Circling the Drain – Maybe the Government Can Help?


Policymakers have woken up to the plight of the newspapers and are on the problem:

Post Post-Intelligencer

The newsprint carcass of the Seattle PI isn’t even cold yet and we’re already learning new (and perhaps revisionist) things about the departed:

The two best print newspapers in the United States – the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, and the Christian Science Monitor – have just died.

How typical of us not to appreciate what we have until it is gone.

The author then goes on to suggest France as a model for saving newspapers where they are inculcating a (state-subsidized) love for newsprint amongst teenagers.  (Hat tip to John who monitors cutting edge European policy innovations for Platformomics).

image Senator Blowhard to the Rescue

Evidently the newspapers’ problem isn’t a demand issue like declining readership, they are just taxed too much:

With many U.S. newspapers struggling to survive, a Democratic senator on Tuesday introduced a bill to help them by allowing newspaper companies to restructure as nonprofits with a variety of tax breaks.

Easy to offer tax breaks to money-losing entities that don’t pay taxes…

If governments really want to help newspapers, banning the Internet seems like a better way to address the root cause.  Still waiting for a flat-out, cold-hard-cash newspaper bailout, but it can’t be that far off.

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