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Where Bill Moyers’ Inspiration and Reality Meet

I just yesterday returned from the Media Reform conference in Minneapolis where Bill Moyers’ made, as usual a deeply inspirational speech, telling how it is all of our tasks to rekindle the dream on which the USA was built and the need for journalism to keep us well informed.

Then on Monday, the New York Times  reported on how Sam Zell was about to cut “500 pages of news each week from the company’s dozen papers, including The Chicago Tribune and The Los Angeles Times. ”

The story added:

The one thing everyone seems to agree on is this: Newspapers around the United States have tried a lot of approaches, newsy to fluffy, parochial to international, voluminous to sparse — and all are in trouble.

Moyers referenced all this in his speech. Of course, we have been chronicling it here for months and months. I am worried as is everyone that quality journalism might disappear, but in the last week I have been to both  the Media Reform conference  and the Journalism that Matters conference which preceded it. At both there were dozens, maybe hundreds of people trying to reinvent journalism, to preserve its best qualities. To tell truth to power.

To me it is the American Dream at work. Each of us has the power to participate in the Democracy and to work to save it, despite all the forces that want to consolidate power into the hands of the few. Each day we have to stand up to them and look for ways keep the spirit and reality of journalism alive. But listen to Bill Moyers he says it better than I. It is truly a great speech.

One final note think of people like Sam Zell and people like Bill Moyers. Which of the two would you want in charge of your most precious democratic institutions? We have to take action now.



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