This post is in response to a post on another one of my group blogs, where there was an incipient discussion, although it got somewhat nipped in the bud because of mutual politeness, of a particular news station on American television. Some folks don't like this particular news station; being the radical that I am, I maintain that all the 24-hour news stations are equally dreadful. I do not use these words, equally dreadful, lightly. These stations, whether liberally or conservatively oriented, do not really report the news that matters. Or they'll latch onto a story for a few nights, and then, whether or not it's still relevant reporting, will drop it for something a little sexier and sparklier. I won't go into specifics, but suffice it to say, there's a lot of stuff going on in the world and we should be kept apprised.
As a result, I have long boycotted the t.v. news. I mean, and this is the truth, I simply do not watch the news on television. Ever, ever. Not anymore. This is not a difficult achievement, as I don't really watch much t.v. at all. However, poor Sarge still tunes in occasionally, and I will stumble upon him tearing his hair out, metaphorically.
Rather, I buy three of our local NYC papers every day. The paper of record (The NY Times), the liberal rag (the Daily News), and the conservative rag (The NY Post). The NYTimes has let me down more than once because of its decidedly liberal bent, which makes me, a serious professional iconoclast, arguer, free-thinker and non-line-tower, a bit uncomfortable. But I'll give them a free pass because they also have a commitment to covering actual issues of import, and there are some kickass staff writers.
I worry about the fate of the ink-and-paper news. I have no evidence for this, only anecdotal knowledge of the path we seem to be taking toward digital media. My favorite NYC paper shut its doors only this past year, and the Times has increased prices to an insane degree. So I have taken this up as my cause--I promise to more mindfully, rather than just testily, boycott the television news, to continue making my daily purchase of the papers...and even to read them!