Friday, March 13th, 2009
One of the things that struck me the most about this interview was how Cramer kept talking about how people had “lied” to him, and lied to his network, and that is somehow an excuse for their pathetic excuse for “journalism”. Softballing CEOs who have run the biggest corporations in the world into the ground and made billions doing it is not journalism.
Journalism is asking real questions, and when you (astonishingly) don’t get answers from the people involved, you go digging. Woodward and Bernstein didn’t blow open Watergate in a 6 minute interview with Nixon on Bloomberg.
I worry that with the popularity of The Daily Show1 and the rise of blogs, we’re losing a generation of investigative reporters. Shouting from the sidelines doesn’t stop cover ups. Stewart and bloggers (like yours truly) adroitly fill the role of observer and commentator2, but the world is full of all sorts of chicanery. We need investigators in these trying times.
Does Woodward really have to be the Woodward of our time? Are we that bad off? Seriously, if you know of (young) people doing solid investigative journalism, leave a comment.
Update: Great comment from Jay O’Conor on how the newspaper business failing is driving this trend.
As I understand it, the revenue model for newspapers was almost entirely based on classified ads — reporting itself doesn’t bring in a lot of direct money, and subscription fees & news stand revenue are largely negligible.
So, to put it in the most oversimplified and pithy way possible, who do we have to thank for the paucity of good journalism? A guy from San Francisco named Craig.