Almost every time I read a newspaper, a magazine, watch the news, listen to the radio, basically anything where I can hear news, I hear the word "bailout." The auto industry, banks, you name it, need bailouts from the government in order to stay afloat (some need more than others, ahem, AIG). But as I keep hearing about how these industries and companies are failing, I can't help but wonder if they deserve to fail. Why is it that these companies are getting what seems to be free money from the government?
So now newspapers need to be saved. I'm not all that surprised that they are asking for a (do I have to say it again?) bailout. Granted, this b****** is for only $5 billion, it pales in comparison to many of the other b******s (let's go with a different one this time...Bank of America). But this bailout (I'm too lazy to use those asterisks over and over again) would render the newspapers as NON-PROFIT ORGANIZATIONS. So the newspapers would be funded solely through outside sources who don't expect anything in return. No "good" press for themselves, these contributors just want newspapers to survive. For the sake of argument, there could be some who are like that. What I think, and I know I'm just a caucasian, Jewish man, with a high school education and no "real world" experience, is that there are few people left who are truly that virtuous. Not like there isn't some bias in certain newspapers already, but I think it would be much more prevalent when given these "endowments."
Now to tackle the problem, there is a simple solution (not mine, I heard it on The Daily Show a few weeks ago), start charging money to read the day's news online. Just like people can buy a paper at a newsstand for maybe $1 a day, the people can pay $1.25 a day to read their news on the internet. This price (hypothetical) would provide the physical newspapers with an edge in price and would drive people away from their internet news. And I know that my plan is not perfect. I obviously haven't tested the theory or have any real expertise on the matter, but nowadays it seems like everyone is looking for their bailout...
Sample Dialogue (fake)
Boss-"Our company is failing, we need to file for bankruptcy. What should we do?"
Employee-"Oh I KNOW! I KNOW! Let's find new and better ways to make money!"
Boss-"Shhh, we don't care about all that fancy new things to do. We need an easy way out."
Different employee who, after his suggestion will receive a promotion-"Let's ask for a bailout from the government!"
Boss-"Great idea! It's easy, and why should we take responsibility for our failure? You get a promotion, no pay raise though."
So as it seems as if every company and every industry asks for more and more bailout money from the government, can newspapers please ask themselves if they can find some other way of making money?