The Wall Street Journal gets no love for its work
Editors of The New Republic, in an editorial, lament the criticism lobbied at newspapers and argue that News Corp. CEO Rupert Murdoch‘s unsolicited bid for Dow Jones & Co., the parent of The Wall Street Journal, should be a rallying cry for liberals to stand behind the industry.
They stated, “We don’t mean to sound naÃ¯ve about the shortcomings of these institutions–which do deserve to be spanked quite frequently for their timidity, laziness, and reluctance to challenge power. But you need only consider the contributions of the Journal to understand the stakes of the present moment. Over the past decades, the Journal hasn’t just been the great chronicler of capitalism; it has been one of the most important checks against its excesses. The paper has regularly exposed important failings of the market–from the leveraged buyouts and insider trading of the 1980s to the stock manipulation of recent years. In the era of deregulation, it’s hard to imagine that the government would have uncovered these epic cases of malfeasance.
“Sadly, these great feats haven’t won the newspaper business liberal love. There are many, especially in the blogosphere, who can’t wait to dance on the graves of the crusty old MSM ‘gatekeepers.’ They champion the rise of ‘citizen journalism,’ as techno-enthusiasts like to describe the bloggers and their Wikipedia model of media: Unlike the MSM brontosaurs, bloggers will actually report the truth without fear of losing access to Washington cocktail parties or pressure from corporate bosses. And the champions of the blogosphere have a point. There have been times in the Bush era when blogs have crushed the largest papers in pursuit of scoops.”
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