Friday, September 15, 2006

New York Times Plays Baquet Rebellion Against Tribune Cost Cutting Big

--Written from Norwich, Vt.

The New York Times gives prominent attention in its Business section today to the rebellion of Times Editor Dean Baquet and other members of the Times staff, including publisher Jeff Johnson, against Tribune Co. executives who want more layoffs at the L.A. Times.

But the NYT article by Katherine Seelye ends with a suggestion the Tribune may crack down on the rebellion.

I think though that it might be difficult for the Tribune to get rid of Baquet without throwing the LAT into a crisis that would eclipse the situation at the Santa Barbara News Press, and reduce both Times circulation and its eventual sale price.

It becomes more and more evident that the Tribune ownership's days are numbered and that the L.A. Times must be sold. Chicago just does not have a determination to run a successful paper in Los Angeles,

Also, the Tribune reports that Tribune CEO Dennis FitzSimons is close to making a deal with dissident Chander family re[resemtatoves on the Tribune board to unravel two partnerships that have impeded a sale. The contents of the deal are not revealed, but a Chandler representative, Tom Unterman, said months ago that ending the partnerships would have to precede a sale.

Baquet, Johnson and others are exhibiting courage in the present struggle and I believe they will eventually reap the benefits in a new, rejuvenated L.A. Times. Let's hope so.

6 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

If the Tribune-Times split occurs, I hope the new owners do some serious personnel replacement in the editorial ranks.

For 25 years, I've read the Times and wondered in amazement: "How does this crap get in a major newspaper?"

Just this summer, the Times has run these whoppers:

--A sad account of leftist radical-bank robber-murderer Sara Jane Olson's depressing life in prison, the contrast with her suburban life married to a Minnesota doctor, and how she pled guilty because she feared the repressive political climate of post 9/11 America.

This repellent article only mentioned her victim, a Sacramento wife and mother, in a footnote.


--A fawning obituary of a 102-year old Communist organizer who "devoted her life to working people". She devoted her life to furthering the most murderous ideology in human history and the Times gives her a nice sendoff.


--A racist, angry screed by a woman bitching about white male Angelenos increasingly finding love with Asian-American women, seemingly preferring them to "women of color" like herself.

Oh yes, she also had one unsatisfactory date with a white guy named Ryan.

--An update on the life and times of Gray Davis, California's classic empty-suit political careerist. As if anyone cared.

The stupidity and bad values shown in these stories reflects poorly on the Times' news judgement.

It screams "We're out of touch!" and crowds out what I would love to read ... reporting that would help bring about good government, good schools, good economy, etc.

9/16/2006 10:48 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Boy, I'll second the first poster's sentiments. When the owner of this blog refers to taking back the times, does he mean to the rot that had set in before it was accelerated by the Tribune company?

In a rare moment of clarity, channel 5 (a Tribune property) covered mayor Villarigosa's address to the Hispanic Broadcasters Association where he made disparaging (and inaccurate) comments about KFI radio hosts John and Ken. To channel five's credit, they allowed John and Ken to view Villaragosa's comments and respond in kind.

It doesn't matter whether you agree with Villaragosa or John and Ken. The idea is that there was a equal representation of both sides, within the time allotted. That is what I want to renew my subscription to the Times. Maybe my memory has clouded with age, but that's how I remember the Times from when I began reading it in the early '70's.

-Lawrence

9/16/2006 7:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"The idea is that there was a equal representation of both sides, within the time allotted.

As if John and Ken are famous for reasoned, balanced discussions.

Obits about the famous and infamous are interesting to more people than the first poster knows. And as for the most murderous ideology in human history, world population-based per captia numbers make the commies look like amateurs compared to other "civilizations."

9/18/2006 2:36 PM  
Blogger MikeZ said...

I'll give an Edurance Award to anonymous #1 for still reading the LAT. I gave up a long time ago. Doonesbury is still on the comics page 1. The paper's vile campaign against Schwarzenegger in the recall election left a mark that will not wash out.

anonymous #3 says that obits are interesting to many people. This is certainly true, but when the obit writer fawns over a failed life, that's not an obituary, that's a eulogy. A good obituary will present the facts, and leave opinion to the opinion pages.

9/19/2006 9:24 AM  
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