I would guess at least 80 percent

Wed 7/23/08 3:02 PM
I seem to get this reaction to Chris Hedges every time I read him. I have sympathy for his lament, but also find him to be part of the problem.

“Newspapers, when well run, are a public trust.”

Then perhaps they should be owned, run and managed by the public instead of by wealthy ideologues.

“The endless rows of talking heads on television, do not report … they rarely pick up the phone, much less go out and find a story. Nearly all reporting—I would guess at least 80 percent—is done by newspapers and the wire services. Take that away and we have a huge black hole.”

Unfortunately that 80% is underpaid, under-educated, unprepared and are given inadequate time and resources to…

“ferret out lies and the abuse of power by elected officials and corrupt businesses, to give a voice to those who would, without the press, have no voice, and to follow, in ways a private citizen cannot, the daily workings of local, state and federal government.”

But pick up any newspaper and look through the stories. How many stories actually accomplish the noble goals set out by Hedges? How many articles by Hedges himself accomplish that? Does Hedges take the time to research his basic facts or does he “guess at least 80 percent” of the time? The real problem is that so few journalists have the intelligence, the skills, the knowledge and the tenacity to bother to do journalism in the first place.

(Chris Hedges, “The Internet Is No Substitute for the Dying Newspaper Industry” 22 July 2008, http://www.alternet.org/mediaculture/92284/the_internet_is_no_substitute_for_the_dying_newspaper_industry/)

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~ by severalfourmany on July 23, 2008.

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