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Is It Time For Newsweek To Be Put Out Of Its Misery?

[ 32 ] September 19, 2012 |

Oh wait, that would be a good question.

My suggestions:

“Should Paul Ryan Be The 2016 Democratic Nominee?” By Jacob Weisberg

“Sam Alito — Closet Moderate?” By Stuart Taylor and Ann Althouse

“Is Train the Greatest Band Since Creed? And Would They Consider Selling One of Their Songs to An Advertiser So People Can Hear Them Already?” By Jonah Weiner

“Is Tim Tebow Better Aaron Rodgers? Or Just Drew Brees?” By Skip Bayless

[Context for Paul's post.]

Comments (32)

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  1. Cody says:

    Are these… real?

    After reading the covers, your suggestions seem likely. I often thought the Republicans were heading towards fascism, but I didn’t realize anyone was openly saying it. Kudos for noticing I guess?

    I would still prefer we try a form of socialism first, but that seems unlikely at this point.

  2. c u n d gulag says:

    Newsweek and Time, the horse and buggy of print news magazines.

    It’s not sad when The Onion is a better source for news – it’s pathetic.

  3. Susan of Texas says:

    Don’t forget that Newsweek hired Megan McArdle, who then wrote a cover article saying that the poors don’t need to go to college because they’ll just be waitresses anyway.

  4. Heron says:

    What’s sad is I’m pretty sure I’ve read articles like that last one before. On the flipside, maybe the Fark community will start getting a bit more respect now that Newsweek is ripping off our thread topics.

  5. agorabum says:

    There was a recent newsweek article by Martin Amis on the GOP convention that was good.
    But in an issue that had a trolling cover (mccardle, college). So it’s not all garbage…just a lot of the stuff they put on the cover.

    • njorl says:

      So they decided to put the rotting fish around the newspaper.

    • Warren Terra says:

      The question isn’t whether Newsweek, which is still a big deal, has some content that is good. With the slim options out there for good writers to get paid for their output, it would be shocking if they didn’t. The point is that their business model now consists of trolling the public with their cover story.

  6. Pays income taxes and votes Obama says:

    There was a short era between the New Deal and Reagan when there was a post-New Deal consensus on fundamental questions like the role of government. During that time a media outlet could realistically adopt a role of objective journalist and make it work because very few people had ideologies outside the main consensus. The one key and obvious exception was around civil rights and Jim Crow, and this was the basis for the southern racists – the forebearers of today’s teavangelicals – developing their distrust of national media.

    It helps that this era coincided with the rise of first radio and then TV news. Because radio and TV stations used public airwaves and had far more barriers to entry than print media the concepts of the Fairness Doctrine and time set aside for Public Service were established early on and further influenced the creation of “objective” media. Thus, a single media source could be trusted by people with a variety of viewpoints – with the standout example being Walter Cronkite.

    Today that is not possible. The consensus and Fairness Doctrine were both killed off during the Reagan presidency. You can’t write an objective account of anything that both right and left will agree with.

    Therefore, what Newsweek is trying to do – and what CNN tried to do before – will fail. They both tried broadening their base by appealing to the wingnuts part of the time. They did get it right that in order to appeal to the wingnuts you had to disable fact-checking or any sense of balance (remember that Lou Dobbs and Glenn Beck both came from CNN) – however if you publish a few wingnut articles mixed with non-wingnut articles, and try to alternate between covers that are raw wingnut meat with those that are pro-Obama, you’ll just piss off everyone. There may be a dwindling market for centrist viewpoints, but for that market you have to do take a Brooks or Broder approach to conservatism, not a red meat approach.

    I don’t know that Newsweek has any good options as the commercial internet approaches 20 years old and print news magazine demand is plummeting, but this strategy will not work.

  7. JohnR says:

    “Is Feudalism the right choice, or just the best choice?”

    “Should Moochers be put to death for their organs, or should they be allowed to contribute to the Productive Class through Work Camps?”

    “Does God require us to wipe out His ancient enemies in the Middle East?”

    Gosh, there are so many good, hard-hitting question for Newsweek to start working up cover stories on. I hope they stay in print for decades to come.

  8. rm says:

    The Case for Not Vaccinating Your Children: Do We Need to Cull the Herd?

    Stand Your Ground: Should Liberals Embrace Gun Rights?

    In God We Trust: Is it Time for a State Religion?

  9. LeeEsq says:

    Pays income taxes, I think that the idea of a post
    New Deal consensus is a bit over stated. There were
    decent numbers of Americans who opposed The
    New Deal from the start. Southern Califonia
    exhibited strong evidence of early wing nuttery
    during the height of the alleged consensus. So
    did other parts of the country. They were weaker but
    the elements of current political partisanship
    were present for a long time.

  10. Joshua says:

    I don’t see Jonah Weiner writing that article, simply because it’s not even up for debate in his mind.

  11. firefall says:

    King Mitt I: Is our Noble Experiment over?

  12. In the Salon piece, was Pareene auditioning for a job at Wonkette?

  13. vacuumslayer says:

    Was Hitler Really All that Bad?

    Isn’t it Time Big Bird Got a Real Job?

    Are Vintage Dildoes an Appropriate Gift for Grandma?

    All less stupid.

  14. greylocks says:

    I’m old enough to remember when Newsweek was considered center-left and Time was considered center-right, and if you really wanted to follow national and world events, you read both.

  15. Linda says:

    Are stupid questions desperate attention whore tactics the future of journalism?

    Fixed it for you.

  16. david mizner says:

    Reminds of this little piece–

    “Counterintuitive cover stories in the Atlantic Magazine”

    http://www.mcsweeneys.net/articles/counterintuitive-cover-stories-in-the-atlantic-magazine

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