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March 25th, 2009
05:00 PM ET

Should government be involved in saving newspapers?

ALT TEXT

(PHOTO CREDIT: GETTY IMAGES)

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

The government might step in and help rescue the struggling newspaper industry. Democratic Senator Benjamin Cardin has introduced a bill that would allow newspapers to operate like nonprofit organizations - kind of like public broadcasting stations.

The "Newspaper Revitalization Act" would let newspapers choose a tax-exempt status; they wouldn't be able to make political endorsements anymore, but could report on all issues - including political campaigns.
Advertising and subscription revenue would be tax-exempt; and contributions made to help support coverage would be tax deductible.

The Maryland senator says his bill is aimed at saving local newspapers, not large conglomerates. He calls the demise of the newspaper industry "a real tragedy for communities across the nation and for our democracy." And he's right.

The head of the newspaper industry's trade group calls the bill a positive step; although he agrees the approach may not work for all newspapers. Newspaper subscriptions and advertising revenue have dropped significantly in the last few years with more people getting their news from the internet or cable TV. Several newspapers have either stopped daily publications or announced they may have to stop publishing; while others have filed for bankruptcy protection, had layoffs, or announced employee furloughs.

Here’s my question to you: Should the government be involved in saving the newspaper industry?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Jack from Boynton Beach, Florida writes:
Jack, The government should definitely be involved in whatever manner necessary to keep our newspapers printing the news and telling us what our government and elected officials are up to. Short sound bites on cable television news can never replace investigative journalists and thoughtful columnists no matter how hard they may try.

Darr from Cleveland writes:
No. Let’s save some trees and have everyone tap the net for their news. More sources. If people are worried about local news regarding their community, have the community start a website or, better yet, actually get off the couch and attend the meetings.

Jaden from Birmingham, Alabama writes:
Definitely. Newspapers have been driven by profits for too long, seeking sensationalist fluff over journalistic excellence. As non-profits, that motive will be gone, and the papers can focus on actual reporting and investigative work. Just look at top-flight services like NPR and the BBC to see how much better our print media can be.

Melissa writes:
No. The newspapers aren't failing because of the economy, they're failing because they've outlived their usefulness. Everyone has been saying this is coming for at least the last 5 years. We knew that the newspapers would be replaced eventually. They are either going to have to change their format, or close down. That’s part of business.

Seth writes:
Absolutely not, this is capitalism at work and we should accept that. Capitalism not only thrives off of competition but requires it. More effective and efficient sources of news are and will continue to take the place of these relics. It’s just the way it is. Newspaper companies would be wise to become more dynamic and make a seamless transition into another type of news delivery medium.


Filed under: Government • Journalism • News Media
soundoff (329 Responses)
  1. Chad from Los Angeles, CA

    Definitely NO! Think how many trees we can save by not printing all that waste on paper. Does anyone read the newspaper cover to cover anymore. Printing needs to stop.

    March 25, 2009 at 1:17 pm |
  2. Gerry In Toronto

    No, newspapers are no longer relevent because of the internet. The good ones with strong investigative and honest reporting will survive and flurish, the others won't.

    Sort of a prelude to what's coming to the cable news business.

    March 25, 2009 at 1:18 pm |
  3. Kevin in Dallas, TX

    Absolutely not, newspapers are obsolete, and they have been for years. I can access the internet on my phone, what do I need a newspaper for? We might as well bring back the town crier.

    March 25, 2009 at 1:20 pm |
  4. Don

    The newspapers should fail or succeed all by themselves. That's the nature of capitalism. The media has failed the public during the last election by failing to offer objective news coverage of the candidates. They've lost their credibility and it's their problem.

    March 25, 2009 at 1:23 pm |
  5. Don from Clifton NJ

    The newspapers should fail or succeed all by themselves. That’s the nature of capitalism. The media has failed the public during the last election by failing to offer objective news coverage of the candidates. They’ve lost their credibility and it’s their problem.

    March 25, 2009 at 1:24 pm |
  6. David Bebeau,Springfield Missouri

    No Jack absolutely not
    It would be nice to hear someone say lets save the taxpayer,lets save the children,lets save our future and our nation.Its time I think to let a few things fail.
    David

    March 25, 2009 at 1:25 pm |
  7. David of Alexandria VA

    It is incredibly regretable that the newpapers are going down the tubes so quickly. But, there is no way that the government can intervene without somehow compromising (in fact or in perception) the freedom of the press. Imagine if the Feds took an 80% stake in a major newpapaer as they did with AIG, and began tinkering with operations in the name of "protecting the public interest"– exactly how much trust would the reading public put in the independence of the paper?

    As it is, I heavily discount (or ignore) the news and opinion reported by papers which I know are significantly owned by heavily biased individuals or groups, left or right.

    March 25, 2009 at 1:26 pm |
  8. Russ in PA

    These questions are easy: of course the government shouldn't be involved in saving newspapers, exactly like they shouldn't be in involved with saving banks or car companies. The government will only compound failure by rewarding it. Since most newspapers are arms of politicians, the only true purpose they serve is to be placed under the mulch in my yard.

    March 25, 2009 at 1:27 pm |
  9. Jenna Wade

    Should the government be involved in saving the newspaper industry?

    I guess deregulation of the industry didn't do much for making them solvent. They failed at the purpose of getting another Republican in office so now they'll pay

    Jenna
    Roseville CA

    March 25, 2009 at 1:31 pm |
  10. Cori of Colorado

    I say No. Why waste money on a dying industry? Let's focus on serious issues like our economy, drug wars at home, jobs and so on. Newspapers are a thing of the past.

    March 25, 2009 at 1:32 pm |
  11. Keith......Sacramento, CA

    This is tricky because newspapers, like the one in denver that was 150 years old are american history, much more so than banks whose greed makes them last on average a much shorter time, newspapers are dealing with the evolution of information transfer gone wireless. Newspapers mush find a way to hold on to a consumer base atleast enough to pay for the paper. More investigative reporting on the economy and where the money from washington is going or more so whom are the contracts going to in all these states with FED funds, these kinds of stories would keep the papers intrest high I believe. The business Exec's will have to settle for small profit margin, tough to live paycheck to paycheck .....isn't it?

    March 25, 2009 at 1:34 pm |
  12. Jason, Koloa, HI

    If the younger generation is not buying newspapers then what is the point in saving them, nostalgia? Let em' go. Those that continue to do credible journalism will find outlets and those that seek to hear from credible journalist will find them. The truth will find a way no matter what the medium.

    March 25, 2009 at 1:36 pm |
  13. Frank from Peterborough

    The short an reasonable answer should be yes. Newspapers have their niche in society and serve a large section of the public despite the emergence of the Internet and 24 hour cable news outlets.

    If this time of economic hardship results in a loss of these forms of communication than society will be the loser in the end. Our family follows news on both the Internet and cable news outlets but we still enjoy reading our local newspaper and if it goes it will not return.

    March 25, 2009 at 1:38 pm |
  14. John from Alabama

    Jack: If a large newspaper employed 15, 000 to 25,000 people it might be feasible to bailout a newspaper. But only if it has a good plan to sell and print newpapers for less to make a profit. The government must realize that by saving a newspaper it can not censor it. Most newspapers in this country will stop printing everyday for 2 days a week, or go out of business. It is truly a sad day in America when newspapers go out of business.

    John from Alabama

    March 25, 2009 at 1:39 pm |
  15. Melvin Seyffert

    Unfortunately the newspaper industry is obsolete and therefore should not be subsidized by the government. The part that concerns me is that there is very little accountability with regard to the blogasphere. You don't have any real way to verify their accuracy. Newpapers alway had a standard that required two verifiable sources before the story could be released.

    March 25, 2009 at 1:42 pm |
  16. JD in NH

    As much as I love newspapers, I would have to say no. Their readership is down because people are getting their news from television channels such as CNN and from the Internet. Government assistance won't make people purchase newspapers. They will have to adapt to the new world order and either sink or swim.

    March 25, 2009 at 1:43 pm |
  17. Tom Ft Lauderdale

    Jack
    We still need the news, we don't need the paper. Newspapers are a waste of energy and resources. I personally have not bought a paper in ten years

    March 25, 2009 at 1:45 pm |
  18. steven bradley

    Jack,
    Nobody saved the CB radio, but doing crosswords on-line seems like a waste of electricity.

    March 25, 2009 at 1:46 pm |
  19. Jackie in Dallas

    No. Newspapers that have maintained good business practices, have found ways to stay useful and valid in this new world, will survive. Those who have not kept up with the times will fail.

    I originally wanted to work for newspapers - looked at getting a journalism degree, the whole works. But even in the 60s, it was clear that newspapers were not keeping up with the times. I'm sorrowful to see another institution find itself imperiled, but in this case, bailouts will do nothing to make the majority of them relevant in the 21st century.

    March 25, 2009 at 1:52 pm |
  20. Sue -Idaho

    Jack, I love reading the morning paper, however, since our paper and the majority of the major ones have become political ads for their parties it's not reporting the "news" anymore. So, I cancelled my subscription for the first time in well, a very long time. Reading the internet now, until they dream up something else. Even the news programs on TV are all slanted one way or another. Reporting the news went out with mini skirts.

    March 25, 2009 at 1:53 pm |
  21. Allan Hanson Placerville, Ca

    We are bailing out everyone else . Newspapers are a very important part of our learning, everyone does not have internet access. Where will they go? It is most important for seniors. Do we want a very unimformed America?
    we don't seem to be very informed now.

    March 25, 2009 at 1:53 pm |
  22. Ray in Nashville

    No. Newspapers are victims of new technology: television, radio, cable and internet. It would be like the government propping up companies that make coal burning locomotives or punch card readers.

    March 25, 2009 at 1:54 pm |
  23. Deborah Black

    No. Newspapers need to get up to date. If they can't survivie it's because they, many of them, are controlled by a very few powerful men, who are only interested in their own profit.

    March 25, 2009 at 1:56 pm |
  24. Mike S., New Orleans

    No. The auto and banking industries are still necessities. Newspapers are not.

    I'd rather logon to my computer and choose which biased publication I want to read. It beats picking up a wet newspaper from the front yard and reading Rupurt Murdoch's view of liberal Democrats.

    March 25, 2009 at 2:01 pm |
  25. Gary of El Centro, Ca

    Someone needs to help them. Many people like to digest their news slowly, usually over a cup of coffee in the morning. That would be a terrible thing to lose.

    March 25, 2009 at 2:05 pm |
  26. bonnie from nj

    Does that mean the government is going to force me to buy and read a newspaper? Newspapers are becoming obsolete and they have to find a way to change and survive. Maybe the government can go back and bailout the company who made my 8-track player and VCR

    March 25, 2009 at 2:08 pm |
  27. Eli, Oklahoma

    I done think the government should be involved in saving any industries.

    That includes the current failing banks, insurance companies and other companies that don't use good judgement or common sense.

    We don't need newspapers anymore, we have the internet.

    March 25, 2009 at 2:08 pm |
  28. Nate of cedar rapids iowa

    In the world with the internet newspapers are obselete.

    March 25, 2009 at 2:15 pm |
  29. Anthony Smith

    NO!!! I appreciate freedom of speech but I also appreciate freedom of enterprise. The bailouts have to stop! In order to be a success, one must fail!

    Wildwood Crest, NJ

    March 25, 2009 at 2:17 pm |
  30. Rose in Az

    NO, No and No, the government needs to keep it nose out of businesses. This government is way too big now. They want to take over everything. Leave private businesses alone to suceed for fail.

    March 25, 2009 at 2:19 pm |
  31. Pablo in Tejas

    Jack,

    Reckon not. The only thing more desirable than the separation of Church and State is the separation of Press and State.
    Our free press, as Jefferson put it, "is the very palladium of Liberty".

    You know the Golden rule of Politics Jack: Whoever supplies the Gold, makes the Rules. So lets keep government money and government influence out of it.

    Pablo
    Arlington Texas

    March 25, 2009 at 2:20 pm |
  32. Jack From WV

    Well first they should grant a panel of politicians to study the newspaper industry. Checking all avenues local and long distant distributions, journalist pay and bonuses, cost, impact on the enirvonment, etc. This should take quit some time. You have to figure in their vacation from office, so they might be able to give and informed decision by lets say mid 2010, and by then the newspaper industry will be gone.

    March 25, 2009 at 2:22 pm |
  33. Greg in Cabot Arkansas

    I think not, in the days before internet, we relied heavily on newspapers to fill in the details of a story we heard on the evening news. Now, a few mouse clicks can provide an overload of information without killing countless trees to make paper that will ultimately wind up in a landfill.
    Unfortunately, newsprint is probably destined to travel the same path as the horse and buggy so if the newspapers can’t or won’t save themselves, don’t expect the government to bail them out. Besides, the Treasury Department already needs all the paper it can get to print more money to pay for the other bail-outs.

    March 25, 2009 at 2:23 pm |
  34. Terry from North Carolina

    Jack
    Why should the government get involved in saving newspapers ? We dont need the newspapers now we have the internet and you and Wolf Blitzer to give us all the information we need.

    March 25, 2009 at 2:24 pm |
  35. odessa

    i don't know because the newspapers that i read are worth reading anymore.i rather read newspapers online or read other magazines who tells the truth.some reporters aren't telling you anything or they aren't reporting correctly.we bailout banks,automobile companies etc;what about bailout the middle class because we are finanical tied and we are tired of private sectors getting taxpayer money for nothing.

    March 25, 2009 at 2:27 pm |
  36. Earl - Reading, PA

    I think so although I am not sure how we go about doing this. Its hard to imagine a Country without Newspapers.Just going to the Internet to get your news really doesn't sem to give you the depth you get in a newspaper. And, afterall what are you going to hit the dog with after he pees on the carpet ? Your Keyboard ? I suppose not !!!

    March 25, 2009 at 2:29 pm |
  37. Jim from Chicago

    No, Jack, newspapers are simply being replaced by electronic media. However, I worry that with the loss of the Fourth Estate, blogs and other media are not scrutinized for editorial integity the way that newspapers have traditionally been. Independent and mostly impartial media are the watchdogs of our democracy.

    March 25, 2009 at 2:33 pm |
  38. Diane/Allentown PA

    Yeah, Jack, and while we're at it, let's have them finance the return of rotary phones. Newspapers, sad to say are becoming obsolete. The sad part is, newspaper always told the story the way it was, without this incessant spin. That I'll definitely miss.

    March 25, 2009 at 2:36 pm |
  39. Max from Grand Forks, ND

    Enough is enough, Jack. My parents owned a small motel many years ago in northern Minnesota. They did great during the busy months in the summer and then not so well during the slow months in the winter. They never asked for a bailout in the winter and were never offered one. They budgeted and made ends meet for more than 20 years – with six kids to boot. When are we going to get past the fact we CAN'T SAVE EVERYONE!!

    March 25, 2009 at 2:39 pm |
  40. Bill in South Jersey

    Jack, newspapers are not enduring hard times because of questionable business practices, greedy executives, or the general economic downturn. They are going out of business because print-on-paper technology is wasteful, inconvenient, and 500 years old.

    The government shouldn't help newspapers for the same reasons it shouldn't help buggy whip makers: technology is making them obsolete, and the general economy doesn't depend on them for survival.

    March 25, 2009 at 2:40 pm |
  41. Gigi in Alabama

    NO! This bailout has got to stop somewhere. Our local newspaper is nothing but yesterday's news . . . and they are owned by the New York Times. I'm like so many others; I get my news from television and the internet.

    March 25, 2009 at 2:45 pm |
  42. Rob

    Since they have been beating up their own investment in AIG, it would seem crazy to let them ever put money into anything. They would just grandstand about pay, ruin the thing, and lose billions. So... NO!

    March 25, 2009 at 2:45 pm |
  43. Jonathan in Virginia

    Yes, but only the newspapers that are favorable to President Obama. After all, we need to have an free and independent media.

    March 25, 2009 at 2:49 pm |
  44. Melissa

    No. The newspapers aren't failing because of the economy, they're failing because they've outlived their usefullness. Everyone has been saying this is coming for at least the last 5 years. We knew that the newspapers would be replaced eventually. They are either going to have to change their format, or close down.

    Thats part of business.

    March 25, 2009 at 2:51 pm |
  45. ROY

    no way .. if you want the country to turn into the UNITED STATES OF Zimbabwe go ahead and let the govt run the newspapers.. the idea that democrats can think of something like that is so disturbing..look at it this way if you save them yoou control them....

    March 25, 2009 at 2:52 pm |
  46. KimSmith, Dodge City, Kansas

    Lets just save the ones that Rupert doesn't own. Unfortunately, newspapers are neither environmentaly friendly, or free from the influences of the priveleged few.

    March 25, 2009 at 2:54 pm |
  47. Daniel Indiana

    No. They have failed on their own and people have become extremely tired of reading the right-wing's opinions. We get too much of that bias on TV. The right-wing/conservative banter is old news.

    March 25, 2009 at 3:00 pm |
  48. ROY from kearney, NE

    if there is something we can learn from all of this is that government shouldnt run anything but the army..the reason why UNITED STATES is the most powerful country in the world is because the government used to be powerless ..now if they run the economy, health care , newspapers then the World will replace the dollar with a foreign currency and believe me you dont wanna do that when you are already leaving a huge deficit for the future generations,

    March 25, 2009 at 3:00 pm |
  49. Dan from Alliance, OH

    No, newspapers should go electronic and not give away the news.

    March 25, 2009 at 3:05 pm |
  50. Tom S. Jordan in Racine Wis.

    I cannot think why .However, it will be a sad day when the last newspaper dies.

    March 25, 2009 at 3:05 pm |
  51. Denny from Tacoma, WA

    No. Computers were designed to replace paper and that includes newspapers. Personally I would love to read a newspaper rather than a computer monitor screen but on the other hand I like the idea of saving the trees too.

    March 25, 2009 at 3:06 pm |
  52. Wally Scherer

    The government should not get invoved in the news delivery revolution. News is a moving target and for growing segment of the population the internet is the source for up to date information. By the time a newspaper is delivered the news is old – it requires a moving medium like the internet to cover a moving target like news.

    March 25, 2009 at 3:06 pm |
  53. Earl

    Not unless this would give them extra recycling money that they can use to pay down the debt?

    March 25, 2009 at 3:07 pm |
  54. Jay in Texas

    NO ! Read the writings of our nation's founders. The government must not be allowed to entangle itself with a free press.
    Brownwood, Texas

    March 25, 2009 at 3:08 pm |
  55. Larry, Ohio

    Jack,I'm sure the left wing government we have now,would love to step in and save their free propaganda,every knows the New York Times,The L.A. times,and the far left rag they publish in San Francisco,are nothing more than an extention of the present scoialist agenda that is now first and foremost in Washington D.C.!!!

    March 25, 2009 at 3:09 pm |
  56. Barbara Casey (St. Petersburg, FL)

    Only if government is also prepared to "save" radio, TV, and blogs, which is where most people now get their news.

    March 25, 2009 at 3:09 pm |
  57. Susan From Twin Falls Idaho

    No, the reason they are not doing well isn’t so much an economic issue as it is a supply and demand problem. With online news, cable news and advertising online the competition has driven the newspapers into un-chartered waters. It doesn’t seem likely they will ever regain the prosperity they once enjoyed.

    March 25, 2009 at 3:09 pm |
  58. Nancy, Tennessee

    Say goodbye to the newspapers. Even if the government tried to save them, the competition of 24-hour news on TV and the internet is too much to overcome. Just like all old technology the newspaper has served its purpose well.

    March 25, 2009 at 3:10 pm |
  59. Sandy in Arkansas

    Why not! It's another worthy cause and I am sure two or three dozen more will pop up tomorrow and then the next day and the day after...when do we run out of lifeguards (assets) to do all this saving? I, personally, would rather see the internet go by the wayside (not going to happen) than lose my newspaper, but there were people who felt that way about their horse and buggy, too.

    March 25, 2009 at 3:12 pm |
  60. Diane, Barneveld, NY

    Not worth the effort. There is no real journalism anymore. Everything printed in the paper is verbatim from the news agencies.

    March 25, 2009 at 3:12 pm |
  61. Mari, Utah

    Nope, industries come and go. We are in an age of technology, paper-media is going the way of the Model-T, obsolete. Most of us now get our news online or via television.

    March 25, 2009 at 3:15 pm |
  62. BRUCE, ST PAUL, MN

    No. Although I personally love to read the paper, I think their problems are much deeper than an economic downturn. They long ago abdicated their role as the canary in the mineshaft. With all the rampant corruption afoot in government and business (especially when the two mix), there is scant reporting of any of it. We still have not seen a good expanation of Iran-Contra, the savings and loan scam, the 2000 Florida recount, the 2004 Ohio voting scandal, the accidental plane crashes of Ron Brown, Mel Carnihan, Paul Wellstone, or Michael Connell. If the Watergate story happened today, we would never know about it.

    March 25, 2009 at 3:16 pm |
  63. LUCY - ILLINOIS

    No I think our President has a big mess to sort through now. If the people aren't buying them, then there is no use to try to save them. I pay over $200.00 a year for a hometown paper. It is well over priced, for a paper full of ads.

    March 25, 2009 at 3:20 pm |
  64. Lynn, Columbia, Mo..

    The government's involved in everything else. I learned alot as a kid reading the papers. I'd miss them if they were gone.

    March 25, 2009 at 3:20 pm |
  65. Chris in Philadelphia

    Why does the government have to save every business from themselves? Newspapers didn't get on board with new technology very quickly and paid the price. I happened to enjoy the paper growing up in Hartford, CT, but that paper is terrible now, in Philly I ordered the Inquirer but the delivery person didn't see fit to drop one off so I canceled. There is a very short list of papers that I would actually pay for now and the newspapers did it to themselves. Please don't waste anymore money on poorly run industries that killed themselves.

    March 25, 2009 at 3:25 pm |
  66. Paula

    No, if no one is buying the paper now, If they take over the papers what changes?

    March 25, 2009 at 3:26 pm |
  67. Lance Schumacher

    Jack, Well, of course! The government is involved in "saving" everything and everybody else, including deadbeats who won't work and rely on welfare to give them everything they deserve, like free health care, food stamps, more unemployment, homes they can't afford, bonuses they don't deserve. After all, what is this nation coming to if we can't have the Sunday morning comics to read. The comics are a "national treasure" and should be saved along with the political cartoons.

    Lance Ridgecrest, Ca

    March 25, 2009 at 3:27 pm |
  68. Robin in Tampa, FL

    I would like to think newspaper industry would rather go down with the sinking ship than sell their souls to be rescued by the bailout.

    March 25, 2009 at 3:28 pm |
  69. George, Dunedin, Florida

    No, if they would all start peddling the truth instead of sensationalism everyone would keep buying the news paper. I buy it every day just for the crossword puzzles, but it is so full of other crap that it has become nothing more than an "American Idol" type gossip columns. Hey guys, it is still called a newspaper, so lets keep it one..

    March 25, 2009 at 3:31 pm |
  70. Mike Spring, TX

    We don't need to save the newspaper industry, but we need to save the presses to print money iif Obama's budget passes.

    March 25, 2009 at 3:34 pm |
  71. Jack Martin

    Jack
    The government should definitely be involved in whatever manner necessary to keep our newspapers printing the news and telling us what our government and elected officials are up to. Short sound bites on cable television news can never replace investigative journalists and thoughtful columnists no matter how hard they may try.
    Jack
    Boynton Beach FL

    March 25, 2009 at 3:38 pm |
  72. Sue Austin Texas

    No most of us get our news either by CNN or other TV news outlets or online. Only the Sports papers will survive we in the U.S. can not get enough of our sports.

    March 25, 2009 at 3:39 pm |
  73. Kevin, Chester Springs PA

    Nope. Enough already. The time has come to let the businesses that are failing, fail. And after this financial fiasco is over, we should break up the banks like we did Ma Bell years back, go to a 21st century form of the Glass Steagall Act and re-regulate all financial firms to prevent this level of greed and mismanagement from ever happening again. We should never, ever again be in the position of bailing out businesses "too big to fail." No business should ever be allowed to be that big.

    March 25, 2009 at 3:42 pm |
  74. kishen c.rao

    i do not think so...these papers should get money from advertisements and survive...and reduce their prices...1.50 sunday magazine...greed...ridiculous....

    March 25, 2009 at 3:45 pm |
  75. Paul S. Columbia, SC

    Consider the government's abject failure with Amtrak and ask yourself the question again. Stop interfering and let the nature of free enterprise takes its course.

    March 25, 2009 at 3:45 pm |
  76. frankie

    No that's just silly. I love newspapers. I choose to believe that we will always have newspapers, and that online is just the newest form newspapers are taking. Perhaps the government could help newspaper corporations to re-tool their industries for the future, perhaps the trees grown for newsprint could be put to other uses. If America learns to have long-range intelligent goals, the future is not bleak.

    March 25, 2009 at 3:46 pm |
  77. RSB - St George, UT

    Saying, "Saving the Newspaper Industry" makes it sound too much like just another bailout. But I do like the idea of the government helping the Newspaper industry to re-define itself and adapt to these changing times, as long as it is not going to put too much of a burden on the taxpayers. As long as there are limits, checks and balances and the laws are well-written to maximize benefit to the local communities and keep corporate greed out of the picture, then I'm in favor of it. (Roland/St. George, UT)

    March 25, 2009 at 3:54 pm |
  78. struggling taxpayer

    Come on Jack. When is this bailing everybody out at the expense of the taxpayer going to stop?

    March 25, 2009 at 3:55 pm |
  79. Tom in Desoto Texas

    “Newspaper Revitalization Act” – NRA – I believe ACT is the operative word here. Newspapers will, unfortunately, continue to go bankrupt. People cannot be made to read. That's where the real detailed story lies. TV news are sound bites. To a lesser extent online news rarely have the same detail as newspapers, rarely does an online story have more than 2 computer pages.

    March 25, 2009 at 3:56 pm |
  80. Ron from SF

    Small local papers yes and the McClatchy group fine, but the rest of the big boys did nothing but cheer-lead for Bush's Iraq war and the worst of his crimes. They are useless and serve no purpose and I won't miss them. After March 2003, a lot changed..well, my views on all mass media changed and not for the better. I used to believe every word, but never again.

    March 25, 2009 at 3:57 pm |
  81. Mark, Bradenton, FL

    No the government is involved in everything already. Why save them? They are over prized and why should I pay for to read the news and all these commercials and ads that do not interest me. It is also more environmental friendly since trees are being saved. I get my news online.

    March 25, 2009 at 3:57 pm |
  82. Eli, Oklahoma

    I don't think the government should be involved in saving any industries.

    That includes the current failing banks, insurance companies and other companies that don’t use good judgement or common sense.

    We don’t need newspapers anymore, we have the internet.

    March 25, 2009 at 3:58 pm |
  83. garrick

    jack look we cant save all the old dinasours of the world,CNN saved you by being on cable,this is the 21st century and we need to look forward to new technology with a click of the mouse i get my newspaper.without killing trees.
    clearwater,fl

    March 25, 2009 at 3:59 pm |
  84. Joyce-Marshall, TX

    NO! They should adapt to the 21st century. I'm finding some papers charging to read them online, with todays technology, they should come to the same and streamline their distribution to adapt.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:01 pm |
  85. Liz, Windsor, Ontario, Canada

    Yes, the government should be involved in saving the newspaper industry – I for one don't want to see our many newspapers wither away and disappear. Print media is still a very important and useful medium to obtain our news, and if government intervention is the only way to save them, then it should intervene.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:02 pm |
  86. Bob Nathanson

    No, the government should not be involved in saving newspapers. However, the government should be involved in saving the few remaining journalists in our pathetic media. They are now commenting on whether Obama uses a TelePrompter too much, or that he didn't call on any major newspapers. If this country never bounces back to being a world leader, the media will have to shoulder some of the blame (although they won't admit it). Ed Henry, Chip Reid, John King and the rest are no better than a journalism student in high school (and I probably owe the high school journalism student an apology). If Jack ever reads this mail, he will know that this is the truth. The American people really do deserve better, more professional people representing us in the media.
    Coconut Creek, Florida

    March 25, 2009 at 4:03 pm |
  87. Allen, Hartwell GA

    Now this is carrying things a little too far.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:08 pm |
  88. Bob from New Brighton

    Nope! Time has passed them by and there are too many ways of getting current information out a lot quicker. The pony express was over when the stagecoaches and trains arrived. It happens!

    March 25, 2009 at 4:11 pm |
  89. Mary Jo

    No. Please, no more bailouts. The newspaper industry is dying. Show your respects by letting it pass peacefully. All of this resuscitation bailout money is just wasted funding to keep the dead alive. The American auto industry and AIG did not need bailout money. They, too, are dying a slow death. Let it happen. Life goes on. We will still read the news online, we will still buy cars from surviving manufacturers, and we will still invest in insurance. Separation of capitalism and state. May the strong survive!

    March 25, 2009 at 4:11 pm |
  90. Dan, Chantilly VA

    No, no, and a million times NO. Let the newspaper industry die already. I'd rather deprive a few people of nostalgic delight than spend millions (or billions) propping up an obsolete technology. When the market changes, you're supposed to change with it, not demand that the government make the market stop changing. What's next? Bailouts for the typewriter and phonograph industries?

    March 25, 2009 at 4:13 pm |
  91. Eleanora Feucht, Mt. Laurel, N.J.

    Jack, although I feel sorry for the people who will lose their jobs If we allow the Newspapers to fail, but enough is enough.
    GREED, GEEED, GREED ! Everybody wants to get on the gravy train. I suspect many of these bailouts may be trumped up. It's like a contgious disease!
    When Mr. and Mrs. John Doe get into financial trouble , and we will, who is going to bail us out. Our children will not be able to go to college and and will not be able to read themnewspapers so they will go bankrupt anyway, Crime will become rampant, so what good will saving the newspapers now do?

    March 25, 2009 at 4:14 pm |
  92. David

    Jack,
    Yes, believe or not most of us learn how to read from a newspaper. If it wasn't for the funny and the sport page I would have never been interested in reading.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:14 pm |
  93. mitchell, arkansas

    no. they no longer serve a purpose if noone's buyin' em. they can raise the price if some people want it that bad, they will pay for it.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:14 pm |
  94. Ralph Nelson

    The newspapers are suffering from the George W. Bush economy. Though I deeply miss the Seattle PI sports. I do not think the government should be involved. Ralph, Yakima, Wa.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:14 pm |
  95. J Georgia

    That's just what we need....government owned newspapers. After all, it works so well for the Kremlin.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:15 pm |
  96. Justin

    The most valuable part of a newspaper is it's journalists. I'm fine giving up the paper and reading it on my laptop or phone. As long dedicated journalists can investigate, report, and annoy the powerful, I'm happy.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:15 pm |
  97. Tom Huntington, NY

    Jack:
    For a year ot two I have been getting most of my news from the Net. I get information days, sometime weeks, before it hits the papers and mainstream media. I still get a paper for local news. Newspapers will go the way of the newsboy on the corner and nothing can stop that. I will miss doing the crossword in ink though.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:16 pm |
  98. LInda in Bisbee, Arizona

    The plan you describe sounds okay. Why not try it?

    March 25, 2009 at 4:17 pm |
  99. Martin

    Yes! If not, there going to be "news blackout." You get your news from the newspapers, isn't it Jack?

    March 25, 2009 at 4:17 pm |
  100. Jim Handy

    ABSOLUTELY NOT! We have spent enough money saving other people while those of us in this country who are truly struggling to keep our head above water can't get ANY help.We are spending a lot of effort trying to save the homes of people who drive around in $40,000 SUV's while some of are riding the bus and can barely afford to rent a studio apartment.

    Jim Handy
    Inglewood, Ca.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:18 pm |
  101. Jacqueline in Atlanta

    Heck no. I am sorry for those who just have to read a newspaper everyday. In the age of 24 hour news media by the time you get the newspaper the story has changed 10 times.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:19 pm |
  102. David,San Bernardino,CA.

    Why would the government want to help newspapers? Without investigative reporters,the politicians would be able to do whatever they wanted because there would be no watchdog reporters keeping an eye on them and telling us what shenanigans they are up to. Anyone who thinks that the internet will do the same job is living in a dream world. Without newspapers,our democracy is finished.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:19 pm |
  103. Ralph in Orange Park, FL

    Should the government be involved in saving the newspaper industry? Of course. It should also be involved in saving the 35 mm camera industry, the VCR industry, and the 8 track tape industry. Lame humor aside, once an information medium becomes obsolescent, efforts to keep it on life support are likely to be unsuccessful. News has to be timely, and the print medium cannot keep up. On the rare occasions when I read a paper version of my local paper, I invariably find stories I have already read online days earlier. Newsprint had a long run, but the run is almost over.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:22 pm |
  104. Carlo

    My impulse action is "no, we don't need to bail out any more corporations." However, after cooling, I realized that newspapers are the cornerstone of our free press. Funny thing about rights-we tend to not appreciate them until they're gone.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:22 pm |
  105. Martin

    I am suprised that it took this long for the newspapers to go down under. Honestly they need to get with the program why would i buy news when i can get it online now. they need to adapt to internet age and market differently, the newspapers are the dinosaurs of the of the media. They have been run the same way since newspapers started.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:23 pm |
  106. Kimberly from Houston, TX

    No, the government can not be expected to do everything...no matter what the Republicans may think...but seriously, no. Like the auto industry, they should have seen the writing on the wall sooner and adjusted with the times.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:23 pm |
  107. James in TN

    I don't see the point other than it's jobs for thousands of people. Today we have internet and by the time you get the paper you've already seen the stories. Some read the paper even before it's printed. Newspapers, magazines, Tidbits, and all that stuff is in the past.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:24 pm |
  108. john ..... marlton nj

    No, the people that own and run the papers are idiots. The level of stupidity almost surpasses our civil servants in DC. FYI, members of the Toll Bothers (of home building fame) thought it made sense to diversify so they bought into The Philadelphia paper(s) (now in bankruptcy) and a huge mega auto dealer... The joke around philly is "find out what Toll is buying and go the other way !!

    I don't care how much good press the Dems are promised... no bail out for papers

    March 25, 2009 at 4:24 pm |
  109. Mark WI.

    As long as it does not cost the tax payers more money, I am all for it! Unfortunately it probably is just prolonging the inevitable of all news having to be read on-line. The computer age just won,t go away. The cup of coffee while reading the newspaper will be replaced with the cup of coffee and the desktop- laptop. God forbid if we had a power failure. But I suppose that is why there is battery backup, Oh and generators, you see where I am going!

    March 25, 2009 at 4:25 pm |
  110. Lisa

    Just like everything else a little to late. I worked in the Newpaper industry. Why do they wait until everything goes to hell before doing anything about it? Is there anyone that can project , forcast, or forsee problem in the U.S. Why does government wait until it cost even more money to bail industries out. More intellegents including security and all the above is needed in the government . Analyize this.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:25 pm |
  111. Matt Harney

    Absolutely not; newspapers are an outdated media in a digital world. If these companies can't adapt they are doomed to fail, with or without government intevension. The government shouldn't spend any more money trying to save newspaper companies than it did trying to save VHS tapes and vinyl records.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:28 pm |
  112. Kurt in Ca

    Jack,

    You ask this question in what media form? And I respond quickly to my thoughts in regards to your question as soon as it is posted.

    I think the proof sits directly in front of both of our eye's as to whether we should bail out the newspapers. No we should not. They must adapt to the future, and the future is now.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:28 pm |
  113. Dan Kelly

    Nine out of 10 tweets on twitter link back to a newspaper story as their source. If newspapers die the Internet blogosphere will be a bigger idiocracy than it is now. I don't trust politicians enough to live without local newspapers. They die, democracy dies.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:29 pm |
  114. Jerry, Huntsville, AL

    Sounds good on the surface, but like a lot of good-sounding ideas it has problems. One, newspapers are failing because the news industry is changing and leaving them behind. We may as well subsidize buggy-whip makers. Two, this would only further the double standard that already exists when it comes to tax-exempt organizations and political support. Just as with churches and ministers, newspapers which support politically correct positions and causes will be fine, those who don't will find themselves constantly defending their tax-exempt status.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:29 pm |
  115. Anthony....Swedsboro, NJ

    Jack, why save the newspapers when most young adults today never saw one? Sorry to say, we old goats never predicted the overwhelming affect of blogger-mania. My sixteen year old son doesn't understand the concept of newspapers and exclaims he gets all he needs for free on the internet. Maybe he's right, I don't even know who Kanye West is.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:29 pm |
  116. Bert

    Did the world start revolveing when the first newspaper was printed?I don't understand the need to save newspapers?
    This is amazing!Wake me up.Please tell me this isn't an issue in our country today!
    We are doomed!

    March 25, 2009 at 4:30 pm |
  117. Jay Slacks

    Yes. Yes, please. This is a bailout we need to build our communities, to make sure our most important freedom has the freedom and ability to report on the business that moves this world.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:31 pm |
  118. Carol

    Why not? Seems they could spend some money for things like this. Personally I love reading the papers in the morning while I drink coffee. The printed word is powerful and I don't think we should just let all the newspapers go down the drain.

    There are still millions of people who don't have computers; and people like me who still prefer to actually sit down and read. I think this is more worthy than some of the bailouts that have been handed out.

    Carol from Mo.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:32 pm |
  119. emma, San Jose

    It will be tragic for this to happen. The Fourth Estate needs to modify itself with newsprint that does not seriously duplicate other news sources. A lot of us are struggling to recoup our losses and are not getting rescued. We should avoid all means that could lead to a state-owned press.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:36 pm |
  120. Pete in Colorado

    Let the newspapers die like any other outdated industry. There is a reason the newspapers are struggling and it's not the fact that subscribers can't afford to buy it. If the reason you don't buy a newspaper because you can't afford the 35 cents for it? or is it because they are environmentally black (wasting massive amounts of paper) and they are no longer filling a need of their customers?

    Find a new revenue model, or die trying to maintain what you always did. ATTENTION NEWSPAPERS: instant, free, delivery methods have existed for the last two decades.... it's call the internet. Innovate or die. I don't want my taxes paying for your ignorance and inability to adapt to todays flat world.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:38 pm |
  121. Mickie

    NO, as much as I love to read the paper, the owners certainly make their bucks both on the paper and the influence they peddle. Let papers make an honest living for a change.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:38 pm |
  122. Terry in Virginia

    We have only one major paper in my area. It's both in print and online. While I love newspapers, our paper has such a heavily slanted ideology that there is no balance in its reporting. I cancelled my subscription last year and banked the $250 a year. Now I go online and read a variety of papers from across the country, so I can determine for myself what is fact and what is just spin. While I do miss the smell and feel of newsprint, I don't feel like I'm wasting my money or time on an unreliable source full of bias and bull.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:43 pm |
  123. Al from Socal

    I think you have to help the papers out until you figure out how they can adapt to new technologies that have created this struggle for them. If you don't American might lose one its fundamental checks and balances "objective journalism". Without newspapers, news and events could be controled much easier. I think it's very dangerous to solely depend on formats that can be a hacked.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:43 pm |
  124. david doherty

    Jack, when the goverment saves the newspaper and the websites that are destroying the papers start to fail, will the goverment rescue them also? Thats the way it works, just like automobiles destroyed the need for horses or the telephone eliminated the telegraph. It's called progress, there will always be winners & losers.

    Dave from NH.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:44 pm |
  125. Jeremy from painesville ohio

    We cant keep doing this!! Yes the news paper industry needs help but thats for them to come up with a plan to keep them from failing. Not the U.S. goverment .

    March 25, 2009 at 4:44 pm |
  126. Peg

    No. The Government has too much on it's plate already. Why bailout anyone? Sink or swim is my motto. News is all too available on line.
    Maybe people should have considered that.
    Peg in NY

    March 25, 2009 at 4:45 pm |
  127. Scott in Canada

    The government shouldn't bail out the industry, but suggestions like this are creative ways to allow Newspaper's to continue to deliver while not creating a question of a Free Press

    March 25, 2009 at 4:45 pm |
  128. Carol

    No, newspapers need to figure out their own viable business model or fail.

    Carol, MN

    March 25, 2009 at 4:45 pm |
  129. Darren

    Why not. We're bailing banks out faster than we can print or borrow the money.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:47 pm |
  130. Bill Wright

    Put it to a public vote and see.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:48 pm |
  131. Jim

    NO ... government involvement will NOT bring back the readers. Why buy the milk when the cow is free...more and more people have discovered they can read their local paper, on line, at No Charge. Government involvement will only screw things up worse. Newspapers need to grow a pair and quit giving it away, free. Until they recapture readers, they are going to continue to lose ground...and no amount of money, thrown at them, will fix it.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:48 pm |
  132. John Webster, Vancouver Canada

    Jack, they compete with you and Wolf, and not that well either. Let them go and save the trees. Besides, not many of us have birdcages anymore.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:50 pm |
  133. HD in Phoenix, AZ

    No more then then bailing out banks and insurance companies.

    HD in Phoenix, AZ

    March 25, 2009 at 4:51 pm |
  134. Jane (Minnesota)

    The newspapers need to cover what CNN & FOX do not to survive – local stories/events. That's the only way they will survive. I want to know what is going on in my City – I don't think I'm alone.

    March 25, 2009 at 4:55 pm |
  135. Jim, Spartanburg, SC

    Yes Jack, if they save only the local independent newspapers. This is the end result when the media is controlled by conglomerates. The press is not free anymore. What we really need in this country is a good trust-busting Attorney General. Hello Mr. Holder, are you listening?

    March 25, 2009 at 4:55 pm |
  136. Matthew

    from Virginia

    Absolutely not. I'm tired of the government blowing our taxpayers on charity. What happened to capitalism? The growing size of government overall is extremely concerning. I fear that we are not only on the brink of socialism, but of a dictatorship of President Obama isn't stopped.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:01 pm |
  137. john p

    Make me tax exempt and I won't endorse anyone either. Papers endorse candidates thru editorial comments from contributers and how they present they're material. Read the paper for one day and you know they're political bent or you must be retarded. If they are for a candidate they will run only material favorable to him and omit unfavorable items. His opponent will get the opposite treatment. All I want is the news as it happens not slanted one way or the other. I canceled my subscription to the Philadelpia Inquirer for this reason. I loved reading the paper but could not stand it's political bias.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:01 pm |
  138. Frank, Connellsville, PA

    When it comes to newspapers – silence is not golden.

    They complement tv and radio. Even 24 hour news can only do so much. Newspapers can do investigations, use Freedom of Information Act to inform and protect the citizens as no other news outlet can.

    I am sure the knee jerk Congress would love to see newspapers go away because there are less folks keeping them accountable to the public. If the President truely wants transparency in government, he must find a way to preserve the print element of the 4th estate.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:03 pm |
  139. Derek T.

    That's a great idea – if we're trying to become Communists...

    Auburn, Alabama

    March 25, 2009 at 5:03 pm |
  140. Pro Kankakee, IL.

    Hell no, they have been wasting perfectly good trees for year, have you seen the billions of tons of news papers of our dumps what a total waste of a good resource! After all no one read them any more in the 21 Century! 🙂

    March 25, 2009 at 5:03 pm |
  141. Susan - Plano, TX

    No, definitely. When they made money, they never thought about us, and now, how many of American people can afford to pay for newspapers? Good thing is there is help with Internet which I am very happy with.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:04 pm |
  142. AJ Igel

    Well, on one hand the newspaper industry is going the way of the automobile industry right now, and are as deserving of a bailout as anyone else. On the other hand, the federal government giving money to the newpapers, or any facet of the media, seems like a colossal conflict of interests.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:04 pm |
  143. mike

    news papers like the drive by media should go away!

    March 25, 2009 at 5:06 pm |
  144. Judi in Illinois

    Unlike banks (and perhaps even the auto industry at large), PRINT newspapers (no offense) are not a core, essential industry for the American economy. Most have online versions, so the ability to 'get the news out" is not eliminated, and they receive advertising income online just as they did in print.

    Besides, newspapers are not a "green" industry. Yes, we can recycle...better not to have all that paper in the first place. Wish we could also "opt out" of all print junk mail that still fills our mailboxes.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:06 pm |
  145. omar

    jack , I guess the government should have saved VHS and analog signal.

    Los Angeles

    March 25, 2009 at 5:06 pm |
  146. Bob Horn

    NO, let the dinosaur die. We are in the process of on going transformation to new technology which is more expansive in comment and points of view.

    The same goes for mass media broadcast television. We pick and choose news on-demand of differing view points instead of the old paradyne of boob-tube TV scheduling.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:08 pm |
  147. Dan Elwell

    Why not Jack? Many left sided newspapers contributed to Obama's campaign fund. It's time for their share.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:09 pm |
  148. Michael, Liverpool, NY

    The government should stay out of private business; every time they get involved it makes things worse. Let the newspapers apply for nonprofit status if they want to but besides that government should stay out of it.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:09 pm |
  149. Mitch

    I applaud Senator Cardin for taking this brave step. A democracy without a vibrant and competitve news industry is a democracy in danger of becoming a totalitarian state. Dictators and juntas love nothing more than a malleable weak press.
    Minneapolis, MN

    March 25, 2009 at 5:09 pm |
  150. Marietta

    Why do't we just all fly to the moon and start a new life. Science, technology and the internet have changed human life forever. The newspapers are just one of many "old timers" that have gone virtual only to leave their ashes behind. The over 50 crowd really needs to leave their baby blankets behind, stop whinning and recognize that we need to find the opportunities in today for the future.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  151. Bob Horn

    Save the forest, save some gas, create new job opportunities – let the newspapers as we have known it pass on. Face it – the economies of internet publishing out weights printing then schleping paper around to be trashed the next day.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  152. Darr/ Cleveland

    No. Lets save some trees and have everyone tap the net for their news. More sources. If people are worried about local news regarding their community have the community start a website or, better yet, actually get off the couch and attend the meetings.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  153. Daniel Martinez, Georgetown, TX

    No, if they cannot keep up with technology, and turn their product to match the times, let them drop like flies.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  154. Joanna Greer

    No. The government should not bail out newspapers. Their death is a natural one not due to mismanagement but to a shift in the use of media in the population. It's sad but their time has come.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  155. JB

    I do not agree with the govt interfering with the newspapers. I would pay more for a twice-weekly paper that had NO ADVERTISING!

    March 25, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  156. Dicky Neely

    Hi Jack,
    I don't know if the government should be involved in saving the newspapers but offering tax empt status wouldn't be a bad idea. It may not surprise you that quite a bit of local newspaper reporting is often driven by advertisers. Perhaps ending ads might make the journalism better.
    Dicky Neely
    Corpus Christi, Tx.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  157. Tennessee Responder

    As newspapers become more unaffordable to publishers, they are
    closing or cutting back the daily version. The internet & TV are
    the source of news to many people, but there is a vast audience
    out here who buy or at least, glance at headlines on news stands.

    The current gov't activity is having an unprecedented impact on
    our lives, and the public need all forms of legit access.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  158. Ronnie

    I don't think that the Government should help bail out the newspaper industry. I'm very pro first amendment and completely agree with the freedom of the press, but capitalism is becoming a forgotten concept recently. Bailing out newspapers would only add to what is already becoming a slippery slope. Newspapers should be allowed to fail just like every other business. There are plenty of outlets for the media to get to news to the public.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  159. Bob

    No! All that needs to happen is to eliminate cable news networks.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  160. Matt Dickerson

    Yeah...that would be great. And maybe while they're at it they can bring back the telegraph.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  161. Sandy Eldridge

    Jack – The newspaper Industry must look at reality. They have been slow to evolve and are not about to become like the dinasours of millions of years ago. They can survive, but I think if you give them tax exempt status you are opening up a can of worms.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  162. shawn

    No, they should charge for online use. Its Karma for all the false and bad things they been writing for years.......

    March 25, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  163. LEIF kolt

    I don't know why our government feels the need to keep bailing out companies that peddle dying technologies... the auto industry was resistant to change, it hurt them, and we bailed them out.... now the newspapers are slowly dying off because of the internet.

    While holding a newspaper is a large part of the experience, it is dying off because of the natural progression of technology. The American public shouldn't be responsible for paying to fight progress.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  164. Sheri Dennis, Rockland Co. NY

    The government can be involved in saving the printed news if it will save me. I'm an unemployed baby boomer facing uncertainty. I may be put out of business because the government keeps saving institutions rather than the middle-class.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  165. Wesley

    Jack,

    No the government should not be involved. If the government gets involved, there goes the right to freedom of press. How can you be critical of the government if it is paying to keep your lights on? Talk about a free pass. The government is not the answer to everything. If the government is allowed to be involved in helping newspapers, we are one step away from outright propaganda.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  166. Dennis Davis

    Absolutely not....It is only a short step to government control of news outlets if they are financed by the government!

    March 25, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  167. Doc

    I recognize the importance of local reporting, but this is an insane idea and will lead to censorship and abuse of the First Amendment. Hmm, Pravda comes to mind

    March 25, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  168. V. B. Cox

    Absolutely not!!! The government is what is wrong with this country now.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  169. Archie McNeill

    Absolutely not, what next after newspapers? Everyone will want to get on the bandwagon. What are these people thinking?

    March 25, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  170. ginger from Trenton, NJ

    Jack, I think saving newspapers is important to saving democracy. The important connection between a free press and democracy is why we have the first ammendment. And just think, we might be able to save newpapers without a billions of dollars and we save jobs in the process. Sounds like a win, win win to me.
    thanks Jack

    March 25, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  171. David

    The newspapers should die a quick and painless death. The sheer quantity of paper should convince any environment loving person that this is necessary. If we could guarantee 100% recycling then fine. But landfills continue to fill up and trees continue to come down. In this electronic age we should be starting to consider an entirely paperless society (as difficult as that may be).

    March 25, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  172. Jerad

    legalize hemp, the newspapers' could cut paper costs by using hemp paper that won't destroy our forests by logging them for paper. That is a way the government can help save the newspaper business. Those who want the physical paper can still have it and for cheaper.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  173. Doris/St. Louis

    It's not the Gov's. money, it's the people's money, and quite frankly I'm tired of the Gov. giving away my money!

    March 25, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  174. Daniel Szilagyi

    So wait the Government steps in and saves the newspapers? and banks and the car markers? how long and who won't they save? oh wait i know i don't see them rushing to save or bother my industry ( animation, film etc ) in fact i lose my job overseas simply because of corporate greed...where is my bailout?

    and no the govenment shouldn't save the newspaper companines, as much as i enjoy reading the paper its a simple matter of knowing that times have changed and it's not the top form of getting news.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  175. Marietta

    No! all good things come to an end–and just think how many millions millions of trees that will be saved which will help in global warming oxygen etc–cut down trees to produce papers to put in the garbage–look at the tax saving dollars, there we spend just to disguard it ...its a good thing!

    March 25, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  176. Conrad

    In regards to the government bailing out the newspaper companies, maybe they should have financed the buggy whip companies after the invention of the automobile. Nothing lasts forever. Things change!

    March 25, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  177. G K in Nebraska

    No Jack, they can all go away, except, of course, the one that will be paying my retirement in a few years – it can stay.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  178. Roddell, Maryland

    I think that the U.S. Government has done enough already with "saving" different markets and industries.After this whole AIG scandal; there should be no more bailing out until the government can regulate where these monies are actually going.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  179. HH Florida

    No-now what else do they want to be involved in as regards my life

    March 25, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  180. Amanda Walton- Fort Erie, Ontario

    Jack-

    I love reading my local newspaper, it's the only place to get information of what's happening in my community.

    I think it's a great idea if government steps in since smaller newspaper as you say concentrate on the 'around town' news and can afford to leave the political opinions and endorsements out of it to become non profit and save the smaller industry of news reporting.

    Everyone else is restructuring and getting government help, the newspaper should too.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  181. Ken in NC

    NO Jack. Let the individual cities bail them out with local tax dollars.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  182. Bernadette Loesch

    dear Jack, I too love to hold and read local newspapers. But alas, we are now into the computer age. I read newspapers online from three different states. We are originally from New York so I read Newsday.com, we live in FL during the winter thus reading rhe Orlando Sentinel, and during the six months from May through October we are residents of New Hamsphire were I can get our local newspaper for free on newstands in and around town. I still keep up with the news, but save so much money by reading the newspapers online.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  183. Dicky Neely

    oops! I meant "tax exempt" status of course!

    March 25, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  184. william

    Someone from congress actually has a good idea. I vote yes on Bens bill!

    William,
    Sebring Florida

    March 25, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  185. Azeem

    Jack, Is there a place where i can put my name on getting a bailout ? It seems like every industry is getting or atleast attempting to get a bailout from the government. The newspaper industry should adapt itself too changing enviroment just like all Americans have too, including myself.

    Daytona Beach, Florida

    March 25, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  186. Bonnie

    Hi Jack – I think that is an excellent solution. I'm a CPA and I can't think of a more worthwhile use of the non-profit tax provision. Local newspapers provide so much to small business, communities, and keeping the politicians honest – coverage that often doesn't work well in other formats.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  187. Morgan, California

    I think that local newspapers are a good thing, and I think that it's sad that newspapers are dying. Yet, I think this bill might be overstepping federal power. Things such as this should be left to the states.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  188. Seth

    Absolutely not, this is capitalism at work and we should accept that. Capitalism not only thrives off of competition but requires it. More effective and efficient sources of news are and will continue to take the place of these relics. It’s just the way it is. Newspaper companies would be wise to become more dynamic and make a seamless transition into another type of news delivery medium.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  189. Joanne Rawlins

    Of course they should Jack. How else are they going to keep brainwashing the masses? Of course they won' t them go under, because they can't just leave that all up to only you and your cohorts, now can they???

    March 25, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  190. Kingsley O. - Georgia

    Newspapers are dying and will continue to die as a result of Internet access expanding to computers, phones, and other portable devices. These days, news going on anywhere in the world is only a click away. The same phenomenon is happening in other developed countries, Japan being a great example. The government cannot and should not try to stifle this technological trend.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  191. Mary

    This is an ingenious move to support the newspaper publishing industry. Newspapers are more than print (or Web), they are a service that gathers, analyses and presents the news. Such a service is essential in this day and age when information updates are so important for understanding and interacting with our economy and society. In Canada we have the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) which is underwritten with taxpayer dollars; the stability of that funding has allowed Canadians to maintain quality programming and support a massive news service that reports consistently and reliably from all over the world. Your proposed American model where subscription and advertising revenue would be tax-exempt is a smart step forward especially for smaller, local publications.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  192. Casey Phillips

    You can't be environmentally conscious and save the newspaper industry at the same time. How much less would end up in our landfills and littering our neighborhoods?

    March 25, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  193. Tony

    No, Maybe the reason we are starting to get our information in the digital for is because we live in a digital age. The government has enough on its plate. It doesnt need to assist a market that was unable to keep up with change. Should we bring back telegrams as well?

    March 25, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  194. John Dunn

    If the govt is going to step in for local newspapers, what about local radio stations that broadcast all the school news, local news and spoting events. Local radio is still more the voice of the community every day than a weekely newspaper

    March 25, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  195. Jeffrey

    In this digital age, the thought of proping up newpapers makes about as much sense as proping up the typewriter business when PC's came along. Newspapers should modify their business models to keep up with current and future market trends.

    Jeffrey
    Atlanta, GA

    March 25, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  196. Jim Blevins

    While I personally think that paper newspapers are very useful, I think that government support should be limited to paying for items that they wish to publish in the paper. How would you feel if you were taxed every year to support the manufacture of buggy whips?

    Jim, Craig, CO

    March 25, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  197. marty forman

    Dear Jack,

    Saving the newspaper industry is definitely a must–but they must be allowed to remain independent!

    March 25, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  198. Ibrahim

    Jack, we did not have to save the steam engine, why do we have to hang into history. If people are getting their news from somewhere else, that is the reality, future.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  199. Jim, Venice FL

    Jack, now this is a great idea! This will keep greed out of our news and maybe we will get the real story.

    Jim, Venice FL

    March 25, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  200. Rex Hodges

    How many dinosaurs would you have our government save. We all cried when railroads didn't need coal shovelers anymore, but we somehow grew from it. And you think just cause it is on newsprint, it is somehow concerned about accuracy? You read the Oklahoman lately?

    March 25, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  201. Kyle

    Absolutely not, if they are to big to fail they should. I live in a small community (Nantucket Island) and our paper covers only local issues and we all buy it. The internet and news channels have made the big papers obsolete, while the small town papers tell us what we need to know about what we need to know locally.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  202. Jim

    No. Sen. Cardin's proposal would not rescue the "press," it would only create a de-fanged, modern-day town crier which, in order to preserve its tax-exempt status, would be required to confine itself to "reporting," i.e., repeating, the views of the powers that be. Recall how PBS pulls itself into its protective shell whenever it receives some hostile attention from Capitol Hill.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  203. Don

    Unfortunately, no. I think people will get used to fewer newspapers. There are far too many options for news and information and the strongest ones will survive. The watchdog part will work itself out. I used to be a daily subscriber but now get info through the web and "The Situation Room". It's just the way it is going to be.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  204. Thom Reges

    Not at all, and I believe at least one founding father would agree. Thomas Jefferson said "The man who reads nothing at all is better educated than the man who reads nothing but newspapers." If people were less manipulated by what people write in papers, we might realize that we need more than two parties, and thus, more than two perspectives on our problems.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  205. Sue

    I work for a century-old family-run newspaper and just saw a 26-year employee with children lose his job in this mess. He deserves a bail-out if anyone does.

    Sue
    Ohio

    March 25, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  206. Tyler C.

    I think a National Public Newspaper, or some organization that subsidizes newspapers, isn't a half-bad idea. The truth is, so much that we call "news" in this country is, in fact, gossip. News organizations have become so focused on what sells that they've pandered away much of their credibility. A newspaper industry with no interest in profit? Hmmm, careful, Jack, that sounds like journalism to me...

    March 25, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  207. Steve, Clifton,VA

    Negative, not the entire industry, however since the Government has , already saved Wall Street and subsequently the Wall Street Journal, it should offer a helping hand to a few similarly situated newspapers that share a business model like the Wall Street Journal

    Steve
    Clifton, VA

    March 25, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  208. Debbie

    Absolutely not!! Look at how we are communicating on this very subject, Jack. The world moves on; advances take place. Government involvement would only hamper the development of the communication system. I wish our own small community would put more info on the internet where I believe it would get more coverage and resident involvement. thank you.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  209. Michael North

    Newspapers forgot they are in the news business and not the paper business. Most of us really do need news that is less than 18 hours old when we get it.

    There is no reason all of what is printed could not be displayed onine. It is sad the the Seattle P-I is only online but they content is there.

    The same can be true for local papers. Let the government fund the transition to online rather than hold them back to something that will be completely gone in less than 20 years. Ask the railroad conductors how that feels.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  210. Georgiann, Ambridge PA

    The local paper which covers the news for the county, has long ago stopped covering local government. They, like the tabloids are only into sensationalism, so that there is no reason to subscribe or read them. They are online and have started a greatly discounted e-edition, which is nice, because you don't have to take it out in the trash, but it still does not cover local government news, pirogi sales – yes; county commisioners or local council meetings – no, unless they know in advance that something outrageous may happen. How they can pay their reporters from the proceeds of e-editions, I don't know. They only thing I miss in the e-edition is the grocery coupons. It seems as though jounalism is no longer the very important "fifth estate"

    March 25, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  211. Mike of Tucson, AZ

    Jack, Everytime government has interfered with a specific industry, bad results usually occur begging the question why they stuck their noses where they didn't belong in the first place. As Newspapers try to survive they will evolve, bringing innovation to their industry.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  212. natx

    Newspapers are a thing of the past just like cassette tapes. If Newspapers are not going to crash our "financial system" then let them fail.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  213. Jack

    No, the newspaper industry should save itself by publishing exclusively online. While it will be a significant change in format and delivery, digital editions can continue to serve a vital role in the community by covering local and regional news. Since they can share updates and refresh content more rapidly, it will also help to ensure readers are kept informed and enlightened about the most important issues, institutions and individuals in their areas.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  214. Don P.

    The newspapers need to get into the 21st century. The Internet age is here. Newspapers are dead as the trees that produced them. The Internet ie:Facebook, Myspace, Ireport, Twitter, and streaming video rule. Twitter this: Please no bailout for newspaper companies.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  215. Marty

    The old model for news delivery is a dinosaur. Most people get their news electronically immediately, which is more benificial and interactive than waiting until the morning for yesterdays news. The major papers dont have to fail, they just need to change their business model to keep up with our preferences.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  216. Tony (Pittsburgh, PA)

    No the government should not be involved in saving newspapers. Just because newspapers die doesn't mean the reporting has to stop. There are other means by which the news can be delivered (the internet, television, etc.). There are things across the board that we don't use anymore as technology improves. The people who do the reporting still have a voice and a means to deliver their message to the public; so as long as the reporting continues the spirit of what newspapers bring does not have to ever go away simply because newspapers themselves cease to exist.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  217. Casey - Manassas, VA

    You can’t be environmentally conscious and save the newspaper industry at the same time. How much less would end up in our landfills and littering our neighborhoods?

    March 25, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  218. david sylvestre

    No, just because jack cafferty and senator Cardin think the newspapers are valuable does not make it so..........the thousands of everday average people who no longer buy the paper have voted with their dollar.....and they have voted in the millions ... NO ! I kinda tired of media and government types telling us what we should value.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  219. Fred Reeser

    Let's see if I've got this right, the goverment want's to strip the fifth estate of it's basic rights. That right being freedom of the press, for a tax exempt status? If a newspaper fails, then it fails, to sacrifice our basic rights is unaceptable.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  220. Shirley Lancelot

    Government has no place in the financial issues of the media.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  221. Michelle in HB

    As a subscriber to three papers, I say yes, yes and yes! Sure, you can find a 'specific' story online, but with newspapers, you get so much more. Case in point, sidebar stories that pique your interest in something you might not have known. I run a topic specific (archaeology) online news site, but still love holding my morning newspaper with a fresh cup of coffee. Non-profit has proven successful in this industry before.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  222. sekanblogger

    Jack, I think it's a great idea. The direction we're going now, the country will end up with two diametrically opposed giant news conglomerates. Also, at the local level, I don't think political endorsements make anyone change their mind about who they support. Endorsements just drive away subscribers who don't agree.
    Tracy
    Kansas

    March 25, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  223. Albuquerque, NM

    Absolutely not, no more bailouts! Newspapers are being replaced by the internet. Inferior products should not be effectively subsidized with taxpayer money.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  224. NANCY M.- Colorado

    Newspapers should be saved if they start being less partisan politically. I have recently dropped my subscription to the newspaper that should be representing my part of the state because it is totally a Republican mouthpiece. The syndicated columnists in it do nothing but trash the President. The editor fills his editorials by tearing down anything Democratic. When I took journalism, news was supposed to be balanced and fair. Editorials have become too one sided. I would not vote to save this newspaper.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  225. Bentley Jenson

    Instead of bailing out the newspaper industry the feds should consider bailing out the troubled funeral industry. That would save a bigger stink in our nation.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  226. Bob

    Hundreds of NPRs repeating the Left's talking points. Just what this Republic needs!

    March 25, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  227. Jim B

    Jack,
    If we can cut a break for the insurance industry, I think we should assist the print industry also. Getting information on an LCD screen is just not the same sensory experience as holding, crumpling, folding and smelling the days newspaper. If we are not careful, another part of our history will be lost forever.

    Jim
    Covington, WA

    March 25, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  228. Herb Greene

    No, No a thousand times no!. Regulation of newspapers, as rotton as some of them are, have a right to be rotten! What does this say about one of our basic rights? The next step will be to regulate what I can say in a blog to the Cafferty File!!!

    March 25, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  229. Len Hudson

    As a long time newspaper man, I say it would be pouring good money down a black hole for our government to do anything to save the newspaper industry. Good newspapers that respond to their community's needs, provide reasonable pricing and do not project an arrogant "we know everything" attitude will be fine. Newspapers that do not serve their community, their advertisers and subscribers will disappear.
    It may be the time that we no longer need to hold a piece of paper in our hands to get the news, opinions and information we need. An online newspaper, as close as your personal computer, may be more effective and cost efficient than the few pages of newsprint thrown in your front yard.

    Len Hudson
    Augusta, Kansas

    March 25, 2009 at 5:20 pm |
  230. lynnej

    Yes, the local papers need to be saved. They are the Fourth Estate and the voice of the voiceless. Our family stopped taking the paper years ago because the price got too high. There are many things that we weren't made aware of because of not getting the local paper.

    This approach to let them act like public access tv channels without being taxed is acceptable to me as long as those who are owned by the conglomerates don't get access to the plan.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:20 pm |
  231. Shocked

    Heck no. Everything the government touches ultimately is destroyed anyway. The reason noone reads the paper anymore is they can get the same snarky opinions paraded as journalism on any news network. And Jack, though it may take a crowbar to do it, please have your lips surgically removed from our mystical new President's rear end. The teleprompter has gone blank and the honeymoon is long over. Thank you.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:20 pm |
  232. george

    Forget socialism if the goverment takes over the newspaters we are headed for communism.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:20 pm |
  233. Michael N Dublin Ca

    Newspapers forgot they are in the news business and not the paper business. Most of us really do need news that is less than 18 hours old when we get it.

    There is no reason all of what is printed could not be displayed onine. It is sad the the Seattle P-I is only online but the content is there.

    The same can be true for local papers. Let the government fund the transition to online rather than hold them back to something that will be completely gone in less than 20 years. Ask the railroad conductors how that feels.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:20 pm |
  234. George

    As much as I enjoy the the pleasant nutmeg scent while reading a newspaper...I'm afraid that like the automobile made the horse & buggy obsolete, the internet and 24-hour news-networks have made the printed word something of an irrelevance. Not to mention the latter two mediums are FREE OF CHARGE.

    That said, I do support the government shifting newspapers to tax-exempt status for the simple reason of saving jobs as well as preserving the classic medium.

    But I wouldn't worry about the demise of local newspapers leading to greater corruption, Jack. The task of muck-racking can be just as easily accomplished from local news websites (which I frequent often) as in printed publications.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:20 pm |
  235. Cliff

    In no way should government be involved in saving the newspaper industry. Although historically the newspaper industry has been an important source of information, the current "Gannett" market has destroyed the local newspaper and any type of responsible local reporting in the papers that service America's larger cities. The current state of the newspapers is best described as wire reports mixed with a small bit of propaganda. If New's papers want to succeed, they should take a look at the success of the internet and create a competitive platform of there own.
    Besides, have we learned nothing from our current government bailouts? AIG anyone...

    Jackson,MS

    March 25, 2009 at 5:20 pm |
  236. Nita Tate

    The paper newspaper is a dinosaur, let it die a natural death. The internet has taken it's place. Now can we have the wake?

    March 25, 2009 at 5:20 pm |
  237. Selina Eugenio

    Sadly, we all have to deal with the changes brought about by modernity. The newspapers have to evolve in order to meet the consumers' demands for new venues of obtaining the news. The fact that the once many newspaper organizations have diminished to a very few say that the demand has shifted somewhere else. Why provide aid to an industry that will inevitably be extinct? It is not worth more taxpayer dollars.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:20 pm |
  238. NMG

    No the G should not help out the newspapers. The Newspapers should be allowed to fail if their business practices do not keep them in the black. I will never subscribe to another newspaper as there are too many sources of news to chose from. I may occasionally buy a paper at the news stand but if there were no more newsstands it would not hurt my feelings, as I will just go online and lookup the news I want to see. I believe that the newspapers should have been focusing their efforts online a long time ago, and if they did not have that foresight too bad close up shop. someone will take your place.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  239. Ryan

    How is it that every time a big company is in need of help we feel the need to help them? Why can't the government just step in and pay everyone's credit card debt when people are careless and go buy things they can't afford? If the newspaper co. is not surviving, its not doing a good enough job, maybe its a good paper but its not being marketed good enough so that enough people know about it. OUR TAX MONEY is their to build our roads, bridges, and improve our schools, how about even cutting the cost of high education, people do not pay taxes so that they can bail out failing companies.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  240. Thad -Laona

    Whatever happened to working hard and innovative ideas to stay afloat in business? That is the problem with todays society, nobody wants to work and use smart business sense to make money. Why should they when the government will step in and bail them out. If they can't make money selling papers, obviously they are not needed in the business world.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  241. Pro Kankakee, IL.

    No, because some things just need to fade away, they are a very very old tech, and they hurt the lungs of our planet by having so many trees cut down so that they could be used as waste paper for dogs, and birds!

    Put the newspapers in a casket and bury them fast before they start to stink!!!

    March 25, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  242. Raymond Blais

    Absolutely not. No one was there to help others when their function became obsolete. The only reason you are even thinking of it is because they are a member of your industry

    March 25, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  243. Emil

    People do not even read newspapers anymore. Let them go bankrupt. People turn to the television and internet for current events. The American people are tired of the government trying to save the failing industries. Look at where the government has placed us in due to their "rescue plans."

    Long Island, New York.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  244. Josh

    NO NO NO NO NO NO! We need to stop bailing out businesses that the free market has clearly deemed not worthy. If GM, or the newspapers, or any other business want to survive they need to adapt to the changing market. Newspapers are obsolete, as the success of your own news site as well as many others have shown. As for the community the internet can easily fill the gap that would replace small locale newspapers, just like it has filled the role of the large.

    Why should these companies get special attention just because they have some nostalgic appeal to lost dreams of the old American Dream? The American Dream may be suffering right now but reviving the old ways of life through dying companies isn't going to save it. The fact is the American Dream has changed, instead of waking up and reading the paper before I go to work when I'm older, I'll be booting up my computer and checking my favorite news sites. Instead of driving a Chevy I'll drive a Honda or Toyota Hybrid. That's just the way it is, and trying to delay it isn't going to help get us out of the recession, just hurt us.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  245. John, Fort Collins, CO

    Alas, newspapers are going the way of high-button shoes and buggy whips; younger people get their news from TV and the internet. As part of the older crew, I enjoy sitting down with a hot cup of coffee in the morning and soaking up the news from the NY Times or the WSJ. Then in the afternoon I treat myself to CNN and the internet. However, when it comes to the daily papers I and we are now in the minority.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  246. Ramon Saldaña

    NO;
    In Puerto Rico, three of the mayor newspaper (two belonging to he same company) are so biased that I have stopped buying them.
    I only buy a weekly, "Claridad"(left wing) to get the nitty gritty of news and investigative reports; I also buy the weekly "Caribbean Bussiness" (right wing)

    March 25, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  247. Jackie in Dallas

    March 25th, 2009 1:52 pm ET
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    No. Newspapers that have maintained good business practices, have found ways to stay useful and valid in this new world, will survive. Those who have not kept up with the times will fail.

    I originally wanted to work for newspapers — looked at getting a journalism degree, the whole works. But even in the 60s, it was clear that newspapers were not keeping up with the times. I’m sorrowful to see another institution find itself imperiled, but in this case, bailouts will do nothing to make the majority of them relevant in the 21st century.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  248. Karol Bauldree

    We should not bail out the newspapers. Let the people that became wealthy from the Newspaper industry bail it out.
    This is progress and change is always going to happen. '
    Let them figure out a way to save themselves. Cut hrs, wages, have people work three 12 hrs shift a week and have people stay home when not needed. The hospitals have been doing this for 20 plus years, as a nurse I have been taking low census days for over 20 years. This might be a good idea for all businesses.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  249. Barbie from Hollywood, CA

    We'd have to ensure, Jack, that whatever administrations are in charge, and that the politics of local politicians would have NO influence whatsoever on which papers would get the money. I'm not sure anyone can do that...

    But I do agree that newspapers must be saved–either the ones we've collected (stored in glass jars and appropriately sealed and buried like Time Capsules, perhaps?) or the ones we'll read in the future. At least if we saved and stored one per month in large glass jars, a couple of thousand years from now archeologists from our future would know for sure we had a real language, photography, and the internet.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  250. Jim from Vancouver, WA

    Some might argue that if they can get the news from the web, why should newspapers survive. Where do they think the news content is coming from? Most web news stories are written by newspaper and broadcast reporters. When newspapers go away, most of that reporting will go away. No one is willing to pay for news on the internet and reporters will not work for free. The survival of newspapers is as crucial as the survival of our economy.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  251. Wayne Pylant

    Absolutely!!!! When I read a newspaper almost every big strory I read I've already seen on cable or the internet but I still buy a paper almost everyday. I can't imagine life without it.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  252. Walt Lindala

    Absolutely not!

    The newspaper business is in no way entitled to a bailout. I am a small-market radio news director and we face similar daily challenges in our industry. We have adapted by spending the money to effectively deliver our information to our consumers through modern methods. We have not received a bailout, nor are we looking for one. The newspapers must adapt to changing technologies in order to stay in business.

    I agree that what newspapers do is very important, but their problem is is HOW their information is delivered to consumers. They must adapt or simply not survive. But they certainly do not need a government handout to help them along.

    I have to wonder how much of Senator Cardin's political war chest is filled with newspaper company based contributions.

    -Walt Lindala
    Marquette, MI

    March 25, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  253. Eric

    No, simply put, many local newpapers express BIAS ideas and concepts which tend to influence the attitudes, behaviors, beliefs and values of the average citizens. This is not news, this is pushing an agenda. Newspapers should always report both sides of every story to ensure an unbiased approach to communicating current events.

    Eric P

    March 25, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  254. John Henderson

    NO WAY!
    They didn' t come bail me out when my business in Photo Processing dissappeared due to "the Digital Age". I lost all my business, my machines are outdated and are worthless, and had to invest again in digital printers. No one helped me...... that is a business risk as it used to be called.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  255. Diane Dagenais Turbide

    Jack,

    there is a need to find solutions. I used to think we could live without papers because of technology...but cannot imagine reading everything on line! And something happens when you hold on to a newspaper, a magazine or a good book -it's called taking and enjoying more of your own time!

    March 25, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  256. Wayne Giampiola

    Not only should the government be involved in saving newspapers it is imperative that it does so. This is simple, there is one industry mentioned in the Constitution and that is the press.
    Wayne Giampiola

    Staten Island NY

    March 25, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  257. D

    ABSOLUTELY NOT!!!!!! Newspapers are outdated and the newspaper companies should keep up with changes in technologies like any other industry. At 22 years old, I very rarely read newspapers. Why pay for something you can get for free online or on television? During these tough economic times, we cannot spare the money to save this dying industry that refuses to change with the times.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  258. Betty

    No, I think that newspapers are obsolete. However, it is very hard to get news in this new era. I would like to see a news media that actually reports news and not just opinions and gossip. I know the economy is issue # 1, but I would still like to hear how our soilders in Iraq and Afganistan are doing? It appears most media has a one track mind now. I do miss real news programs.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  259. Annie, Atlanta

    I love the written word, Jack, but am afraid newspapers are becoming obsolete. The internet filled in for me years ago, right about the time my daily paper subscription price doubled from the original.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  260. Joey in NJ

    Jack,

    If the local newspapers are going under, maybe it's because no one is buying them. Why should we bail them out?? How would that improve their business? Why do we hear about newspapers going under but not magazines? If a magazine goes down, it due to lack of interest. The same is true of newspapers.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  261. Bill J Florida

    No Jack Our Local Newspaper Recently took A group tp Italy ,?
    They also Had A recent weekend at a Beach Resort
    NO BAIL OUTS

    March 25, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  262. Papa Foote

    No, the newspaper industries are just going to either go into newer ideas, find smaller "niches", or go out – like the buggy whips!

    March 25, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  263. Oregon Wally Las Vegas Nevada

    NO ! let them go , we'll save more trees, when Henry Ford made the model A he dropped the model T . no one i know still has a land line telephone, it's a changing world . i feel bad about the job loss, but they can join us ship repair workers, we lost our job's 25 years ago..

    March 25, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  264. Dominic C. Gardunio

    Jack, the government shouldn't be a role to save the newspaper. If people wants to read the newspaper they should help save the newspaper business. The government has more diffcult issues to deal out, and too busy to save the newspaper business. Its should be the people of this nation because they NEED TO BE A HELPING HAND TO THE GOVERNMENT.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  265. Don in Grand Rapids, Mi

    Yes, Democrats better start saving newspaper for a paper drive cause their going to need some form of income beginning with the next election!

    March 25, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  266. Heather in Seattle

    I'm a media buyer who bought print newspaper advertising for years. As much as I miss seeing my ads land on my doorstep, the doorstep has changed. Remaining newspapers need to reinvent the fish wrapper – not the federal government – after the last 8 years, government was smelly enough!

    March 25, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  267. Frank

    Absolutely not. The internet and blogging give people their voice. Newspapers kill trees. I can get news on my phone wherever I go.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  268. Margie Fletcher

    No Jack, they shouldn't; not unless the big conglomerates were broken down or exempted. I'm very tired of this country thinking it's OK for us to practice "corporate socialism" and that those who want it are the very people who have screeched for 40 years about the single mother who sits around eating bon-bons on his hard "earned" dime. The "earned" is questionable to begin with as everyone should ask themselves:

    "Exactly WHAT is really WORTHY of making 15 million/yr PLUS bonuses"????

    How does one's works "worth" get determined? Who assigns that value? It isn't the majority, that's for sure. Meanwhile we ALL know that employees shouldn't think they're "entitled" to ask or organize for a better wage [hm....guess THEY think they're worth something too!].

    And not unless WE get the profits. If y'all want socialism for corporates then it ought to be good for the rest of us too ;o{

    March 25, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  269. ken m.

    J ack i could not agree with you more , every one loves to get there news now from the inter net or t.v. but the sad thing about that is there would be so much corucption on the inter net for your time and perhaps the whole truth will not come out as it does on print where the editor screens and the stories have to pass muster before its ever considered for the paper, and the main thin is they stand behind there word the wriien word that is. you wont find thar on the internet, besdes what are these delivery poeple who deliver ypur daily paper in the wrong place every morning for 30 years going to do, the news paper has been the our main channel for imformation since time and the first set of print was invented, there as inportant as chevy's ,fords, and mom's home made apple pie , these items shold never ever go away unless we all fail one another for 20,000 other opinions and which one to trust. ken

    March 25, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  270. Moore Daddy

    Hell no. Most newspapers have made themselves obsolete by not keeping pace with news the consumer's need for relevant and real information. What's the point in reading a printed page with yesterday's news. The Internet has developed into the most reliable source for diverse and substantive multimedia news that's actually NEW. We don't need typewriters or 8 tracks tapes anymore. Adapt or become extinct.

    Moore Daddy – Washington, DC

    March 25, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  271. john northcutt

    no!!!!!!!!!! it will just be a other bail out!!!!!!!!!

    March 25, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  272. Chuck Bloch

    Local newspapers are vital if we are to preserve our communities and responsible local government. Without them organized interest groups and powerful financial interest would completely destroy any hope of preserving a democracy accountable to the people. As it is, we are already on the brink of that happening.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  273. Ruth

    No the goverment should not bail out the newspaper industry. The goverment is spending to much and bankrupting this Country. Obama has lied to the people so much, "no earmarks" and everything he has signed has been full of them. You said earlier quote "the country is still in love with Obama" I think your wrong on that . Not nearly as many are "in love" with him now and it will be less and less.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  274. Pro Kankakee, IL.

    No, because we have e-books and e-paper now, people have access to full color media and real time news casts on their e-books, and e-papers, we do not want to go backwards anymore! And we do not want any more bailouts we are already broke from the other bailouts!

    March 25, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  275. Willie C.

    The newspapers only report what sells papers. As long as we have you on CNN telling it like you hear it and reporting it like you mean it, what is need for bailing out the newspapers.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  276. John Brewer

    I'm betting those buggy makers are starting to feel a little neglected, no bailout for them when they became obselete.

    John from Canada

    March 25, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  277. Ron

    Should the govt. bailout the papers? Let’s see.
    A few months ago the govt. bailed out the financial industry and we were told that the govt. had no desire to control these companies. Then when our govt. found out that these companies were doing something they didn’t like, the President, the Treasury, the chairman of the House Finance committee, N.Y. Attorney General, the CT Attorney General and pretty much every breathing politician expressed outrage, demanded names, and are now doing everything possible to dictate how these companies should act.
    Sure go ahead bailout the papers. I just hope those papers don’t mind being told what to print.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  278. David Eaton

    Jack, the newspapers are disappearing because most of them are not reporting the news accurately. Most newspapers in this country have a political agenda which is reflected in the way news is reported and in their editorials. The American people are smart and recognize this and are turned off. These newspapers are getting exactly what they deserve and the government should stay out of it.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  279. Pat

    I've worked for newspapers and do not want to see them go. However, if they are subsidized by the government they would not be allowed to voice their opinions against that adminisration whether it was warranted or not. The term "free press" would become obsolete. And another infringement on our rights as a democracy would be imposed. I'm wondering when all this madness will end.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  280. Thomas

    While the cause may be worthwhile, why stop at making some newspapers operate "like" non-profits? Go all the way and let them become completely non-profit.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:26 pm |
  281. Jon

    Heck no !

    Are we going to bailout every company that goes broke?

    I am a Paint contractor, i have 100,000 bad debt can i get a bailout too???

    March 25, 2009 at 5:26 pm |
  282. Karl from SF, CA

    Time marches on and things change. We don’t make products that aren’t consumed, except the auto industry, and we create new products that are of use. The newspaper industry has to do the same. I’m have no clue what they should morph into, but they have to change or die. News is necessary, but paper isn’t the answer anymore.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:26 pm |
  283. maggie berkvist

    YES – Absolutely! So long as their independence is guaranteed. Who else will employ staffs of journalists doing original investigative reporting – with fact checkers and Editors to be sure they stay legit? Not blogs, basically a bunch of unmonitored personal opinions. Not TV – dedicated to the sensation of the moment!

    March 25, 2009 at 5:26 pm |
  284. Enrique, Bronx NY

    Jack,
    The government definitely must take decisive and well-calculated steps to save newspapers across the country. As an educator, I cringe at the thought that vast numbers of people in markets across the country will begin to lose access to legitimate sources of current events and information in general. Think of what that will do to the democratic process, to our overall awareness of our communities and the world at large; and God-forbid we should forget about "maintaining our competitive edge in a 21st century world." If the government does nothing, we could see a devastating drop in the national literacy rate. Wonder what that'd do to our competitive edge...

    March 25, 2009 at 5:26 pm |
  285. Richard

    Yes, let's explore the idea of turning newspapers into not-for-profit organizations, with a number of caveats: (1) freedom of speech; I'm troubled by your report that newspapers could not endorse political candidates; (2) no federal support other than tax exemption; (3) fair treatment of shareholders in the newspapers that convert to not-for-profits; (4) no restriction on which newspapers get to convert - we need the New York Times as well as the local papers.

    Finally, a suggestion from congress that makes sense. Could this be a harbinger of the change president Obama has been talking about?

    I live in Chambersburg, PA

    March 25, 2009 at 5:27 pm |
  286. Kenneth Bonacci

    The marriage of government and the fourth estate as proposed by U.S. Senator Ben Cardin, of Maryland, though well intended is DOA.

    The First Amendment states in part, "that Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or abridging the freedom of the press." A condition of the press not to endorse a political candidate in order to receiving financial consideration, is a form of "abridgment."

    Ken

    Salem, Ma. 01970

    March 25, 2009 at 5:27 pm |
  287. maggie berkvist

    YES – Absolutely! So long as their independence is guaranteed. Who else will employ staffs of journalists doing original investigative reporting – with fact checkers and Editors to be sure they stay legit? Not blogs, basically a bunch of unmonitored personal opinions. Not TV – dedicated to the sensation of the moment!

    maggie – new york city

    March 25, 2009 at 5:27 pm |
  288. Rohan

    If the government has to help, it should help newspapers catch up with technology and make them use the internet because thats where most people get their news from nowadays.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:27 pm |
  289. Bob

    Should the govt. bailout newspapers? No. There is no future in newspapers and any money spent on them is probably an attempt to bring back "the good old days" of print journalism. Like it or not, our future is electronic (like this blog - try that in a newspaper; best print can do is a letter to the editor).

    There is a role for print journalism - indepth, substantive reporting which the electronic media can only struggle to duplicate now, but this is not the same as daily newspapers.

    I can understand bailing out the auto industry because we need a manufacturing base for our transportation needs. I can understand bailing out banks because only banks can handle our financial needs.

    But newspapers? Cable news and the internet has already replaced daily news.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:28 pm |
  290. Ryan - Boston, Ma

    How is it that every time a big company is in need of help we feel the need to help them? Why can’t the government just step in and pay everyone’s credit card debt when people are careless and go buy things they can’t afford? If the newspaper co. is not surviving, its not doing a good enough job, maybe its a good paper but its not being marketed good enough so that enough people know about it. OUR TAX MONEY is their to build our roads, bridges, and improve our schools, how about even cutting the cost of high education, people do not pay taxes so that they can bail out failing companies.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:28 pm |
  291. Rita in NC

    YES! A thousand times...YES!

    March 25, 2009 at 5:28 pm |
  292. Gigi

    I hate to see the newspapers disappear. Cable news is OK but it goes in one ear and out the other. The printed word is tangible proof of history. I have news papers back to WW1. The best record of history and I can hold it in my hands (carefully).
    BUT I don't want government involved in saving them. It could hamper freedom of speech.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:28 pm |
  293. maggie berkvist

    YES – Absolutely! So long as their independence is guaranteed. Who else will employ staffs of journalists doing original investigative reporting – with fact checkers and Editors to be sure they stay legit? Not blogs, basically a bunch of unmonitored personal opinions. Not TV – dedicated to the sensation of the moment!

    maggie b, new york city

    March 25, 2009 at 5:28 pm |
  294. Gwen

    Absolutely not! The government can not give the newspapers the one thing they really need: more readers. More readers mean they can generate more revenue. Without the revenue, no jobs for their workers, etc., etc. They can't force people to buy newspapers.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:28 pm |
  295. Jeremy Sokolsky

    Any business that cannot survive on it's own should be allowed to die. Obviously people don't want or need newspapers anymore, they are quickly becoming anachronistic. You guys on TV seem to think this is a tragic turn of events, a death-knell for journalism, what a joke! The internet has proven itself to be a better, faster, cheaper, more varied, less biased mechanism for disseminating ideas. If you disagree, please send me a telegram.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:28 pm |
  296. Marge in New Port Richey, Florida

    For selfish reasons, I certainly hope so, Jack. It is how I start my day every single morning... I feed my 4 big dogs then nurse 2 cups of coffee and the St. Petersburg Times. And although I watch THE SITUATION ROOM most days along with several other cable "news" shows (The DAILY SHOW with Jon Stewart, COUNTDOWN with Keith Olberman and the RACHEL MADDOW SHOW) and often read news stories on the internet, somehow none compares with actually reading the newspaper. And even though so much of the news is lousy, it is the most peaceful part of my day. I would miss it very much!

    March 25, 2009 at 5:29 pm |
  297. Jasmine in Germany

    Yes. Good newspapers are still important, they allow the reader to think for himself and they set a good example to children. TV news is not precise enough (except for The Cafferty File). We can think about doing away with newspapers when power shortages and the potential of damage to an artificial satellite become extinct, and when every home has access to the Internet. That's going to be a while, Jack.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:29 pm |
  298. Jon

    Heck No!

    Are we going to bail out every company that goes broke!

    I am a paint contractor, with a 100,000 debit problem, can i get a bailout too???

    March 25, 2009 at 5:30 pm |
  299. Chak

    Well, after newspaper, then other media, right?
    Keep outsourcing the ordinary middle class American jobs. Keep the executive bonuses, keep low tax for wealthy and finally eliminate middleclass. Keep spending American money for economic stimulus ..good go

    March 25, 2009 at 5:30 pm |
  300. Brian

    No-No-No... Newspaper are dead. They knew this day would come during the .COM boom... Everything is online. Why would I want to read something with yesterday's news presenting this as today's news?

    It's a bad business, a massive waste of paper and has become irrelevant.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:30 pm |
  301. Chad from Los Angeles, CA

    Definitely NO! Think how many trees we can save by not printing all that waste on paper. Does anyone read the newspaper cover to cover anymore. Printing needs to stop.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:30 pm |
  302. Tony IL

    Absolutely not Jack. Newspapers should have seen this coming. It is a sign of the times and the newspapers have no one to blame but themselves. Newspapers started their own websites, posting the newspaper on it, usually for free. Why in the world would you pay for the newsppaper if you can read it for free on the internet. Maybe the newspapers should have started an online subscription just like the real newspapers then they wouldn't have been losing all that money and closing its doors.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:31 pm |
  303. Erroll

    No – if yes, then how about bailing out all of us small businesses who are getting killed and havin gto cut back (on what few employees`we have anyhow) so the Govt can support those who won't (not same as don't) work.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:32 pm |
  304. Judith

    Jack,
    We are one Country who helps other Countries.We are always right there.Always in the past $$ didn't matter.
    China is starting to buy up all our bad debt.Why?What do they have in store for the USA.
    It is better to help our Country and our President Obama.He's trying to fix the problems that were given to him.He didn't make them.Yes it will cost us high $$ but at the end if we don't we might pay a higher price.
    Is anyone thinking of that?
    If we don't help the newspapers what will happen?Will they not be or will foreigners buy them.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:32 pm |
  305. Bill, Rio Grande Valley, TX

    Jack,
    No, we do not need to pay Rupert Murdoch to publish newspapers. He is already one of the richest men on the planet. His Fox broadcasting empire alone makes enough cash to cover his newspaper empire. He was more than able to spend a lot of cash to buy the Wall Street Journal.
    It is time for us to stop socializing business losses while privatizing profitable ones. Enough with the corporate welfare, already! We have a nation to put back on track: health care, education and energy come to mind, as examples deserving investment. We ask our college students to borrow now to cover their futures. We can do so for our nation too.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:32 pm |
  306. Esther Nemitz

    Jack,
    I really like this approach to saving the newspapers.
    My local papers have been cutting back in various ways.
    It makes me nervous because I really count on them for the news.
    The non-profit concept is genious along with no political ads
    but still allowing for political coverage. I don't want to lose my papers.
    This sounds like a workable solution to protect what is a very
    important and necessary community service – our newspapers.
    Thanks for putting this idea out there for examination and comment.
    And thanks to the Senator proposing this legislation.
    Esther Nemitz

    March 25, 2009 at 5:33 pm |
  307. john christopher

    I have had the great honour of working some brilliant journalists. Been in on the birth of newspapers and the demise of others. We appear to be in technological revolution as well in an economic septic tank . Along with the corporate culture of corruption, we are faced with a corresponding culture of violence throughout society. Judging by the voodoo economic climate, constant whining of Obama's political adversaries and non-stop, micro-surgical prognosications from the most verbose political team on television...

    ...I wouldn't throw away your old Underwood yet.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:33 pm |
  308. Flora Churnin

    The newspaper is clearly the most significant daily informational tool we have. To allow it to collapse would set us back tremendously, Reporting news and providing feature stories that are corroborated with facts constitute the backbone of an intelligently informed society, Without a doubt, the survival of newspapers should be encouraged with the help of the government in any way possible.
    Flora Churnin
    Douglas Churnin

    March 25, 2009 at 5:33 pm |
  309. Rayshaun H.- New York

    NO, I think that the newspaper industry is becoming obsolete frankly and that people young and particularly old should know how to retrieve their information from the World Wide Web. This would assist all people in becoming more technologically and computer savvy for it will be the future of how information is attained. We should just let the newspaper industry gradually phase out.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:33 pm |
  310. Ryan

    No Way! Why should tax payers pay for their lack of innovation? The alternative ways of getting the news has greatly increased in the last decade and it seems like they never capitalized. It's hard to say let them fail, but is the United States supposed to subsidize every industry we have? Seems like another waste of money to me.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:33 pm |
  311. Terry Shortt

    Local news papers that fail do so because they are no longer competitive..they can't sell enough overpriced ads.

    The idea that local's won't know what's going on in their own communities with the death of the local paper is a myth perpertuated by old people (like you and Wolf). A local blog could replace the local paper in a matter of seconds.

    Save the bailout for someone else.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:34 pm |
  312. Jim

    No. The government should not get involved with newspapers in any way. No bailout; no takeover. This is unconstitutional. It is a conflict of interest for the government. Pravda! (That means truth in Russian and Polish for all of you who were born after the wall came down.)

    March 25, 2009 at 5:34 pm |
  313. Julian

    No, the newspapers should have adapted to changing times. This is natural selection.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:35 pm |
  314. Bill G

    While we're in an industry saving mood, one that really needs help is the buggy whip industry. It's been distressed alot longer than the newspaper industry. And they don't need to cut down forests to survive.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:35 pm |
  315. Inventor

    Jack:
    Only low cost loans, like 2% or some such. this loaning and Bailout thing has to stop.
    What we need is "The Next Microwave Oven". How about "Free Energy"??
    I'll show you how. I know I can make a "Change"

    March 25, 2009 at 5:35 pm |
  316. Ashanti

    The government should definitely be involved in saving the newspaper industry. The newspaper is one of the few resources the public has to gain access to the raw truth of an important issue or current event. It delivers the real news, without the drama and suspense of tv news. Especially in a time such as this, Americans need to have access to the truth so that better, more informed decisions can be made by each of us and we can operate more like a democracy and less like an oligarchy.
    Atlanta, GA

    March 25, 2009 at 5:36 pm |
  317. Ismael@Seattle

    I live in Seattle but im on Vacation in Dallas and I've seen with my own house the king country news journal shut downand turned into LA Fitness. The Seattle P.I is bankrupted. We are in a new era in which we get our news/information. It is the first of the three industries that is declining. I predict the radio industry will be the next. I know this because people are 'paying' for commercial-free service like XM radio and who wants to listen to the radio when your banging your ipod that has 1000's of songs. Next, tivo and dvr pause, stop, and record through what?? you got it commercial. These multi-billion dollar industry isn't diminishing but in fact reinventing to the internet. When reinvention occurs opportunity exists for entrepreneurs. It's a trend, in fact the biggest trend that only occurs about every 85 years. The biggest trend our generation will see in our lives. The last one was the industrial revolution with the television, radio, the light bulb, and automobiles. This trend consist of the convergence of the television, computer, cell-phones, and the internet. It's all about convergence and VOIP (voice over internet protocol). If your somewhat ambitious and seek opportunity, this is by far the greatest opportunity to create wealth.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:36 pm |
  318. Ryan

    the comment regarding newspaper innovation by Ryan comes from San Francisco, CA

    March 25, 2009 at 5:37 pm |
  319. Harold on the left coast

    Government getting involved in saving newspapers could be very good for our democracy.
    The loss of many, if not most, of our newspapers could be very bad for our democracy and cause a further loss of the freedoms and rights of we, the people.
    However, it is very important that government not be allowed in any way to influence the content of the newspapers it is involved in saving.

    Harold
    Depoe Bay, Oregon

    March 25, 2009 at 5:38 pm |
  320. D. A. Seese

    Americans seem to want both "a pill for every ill" and "a BILL for every ill," Government bailouts aren't working, or working efficiently, anywhere they have been put in place. Newspapers cannot work like they did in the days of Mark Twain. It is time to put the ingenuity of Twain's day, equipped with today's technology, to work at solving the newspaper problem. If the people want newspapers, they shall make a way without a government bill.

    D.A. Seese
    Phoenix, Arizona

    March 25, 2009 at 5:39 pm |
  321. Ed from Durango, Colorado

    No, we should not bail out the newspapers. They have dug their own hole. And the level of any journalism and reporting is pretty much non existent anyway. Gone are the days when reporters actually went out and got news or did any investigative reporting. I can get more information from the internet.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:40 pm |
  322. Gary

    Why is it that every industry that struggles is being considered for some form of help? Newspapers are obsolete in todays connected society, they need to pursue other ways of revenue production. Also the government should stop wasting time/taxpayers money even entertaining these costly mistakes. We the fiscally responsible are fed up with our elected officials and their halfbaked ideas.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:40 pm |
  323. MJR53

    No, the government should not be involved in saving the newspaper industry, the insurance industry, the automobile industry or in any other private business. Involvment equals a proprietary stake in the industry and that equals, at best, nationalization of an industry and at worst, socialization. Everytime government sticks their fat fingers into private industry, the industry is the worse for it. Let's get back to legitimate roles for government and not the business insurer of last resort.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:41 pm |
  324. Ed'sKate

    The newspapers were here long before the current media outlets. They should be saved.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:43 pm |
  325. Jack McMonigle

    In the case of my two local "newspapers" a resounding H–L NO! Both the Orlando Sentinel and the Daytona Beach News-Journal have gone far beyond merely being pathetic in their refusal to print any ugly truths regarding Israel and Israel-American relations and are now truly despicable. I will leave their financial health in the hands of the local chapters of the pro-Israel propaganda / pressure machine whose interests they serve so slavishly.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:43 pm |
  326. Frank for AIG

    NO!!!

    Why would government save a paper if it is not a free market successful product at this time and technical age? Evolution to computer is no reason to save or subsidize newspapers.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:44 pm |
  327. Buzz in Solvang

    I love the idea of saving local papers. If we can bail out rich CEO's who could care less about the average American citizen then maybe the money would be better spent saving papers who DO care about their people.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:45 pm |
  328. Jeannie

    Hi,
    I agree that our government should take an interest in helping secure local newpapers BUT also help other small investers have a chance to startup, by making government grants & low loans available for them.
    There is a large population dependant on a daily newspaper, mostly the elderly. It is for many elderly their ONLY feeling of a community connection.
    TV news is too driven by ratings & ruled by advertisers, and the web is soon headed that way. Also, not all websites could afford to advertize their website on TV either.

    March 25, 2009 at 5:47 pm |
  329. Bruce

    No; The big trend is going toward electronic dissemination of news. Newspapers are prehistoric, and is a waste to save them. Cardin: Get with the program dude!

    March 25, 2009 at 5:48 pm |