Back in October, I joked that it wouldn’t be long before the junk-bond New York Times was lining up for a government bailout. Last month, I followed up with the launch of the Newspaper Bailout Countdown Clock in a post about Tribune Media’s financial woes.
Well, it has come to pass: Democrats have proposed a newspaper bailout in Connecticut:
Seven legislators from the area served by The Bristol Press and The Herald in New Britain today wrote to the state Department of Economic and Community Development to ask for its help in preventing the closure of the newspapers.
We’ll have more on this breaking news later, but for now, here’s the letter.
It’s also encouraging today to see that Jim Romenesko’s daily email roundup of media news for the Poynter Institute, which the whole industry reads, featured at the top of its list the story about Gov. Jodi Rell and Attorney General Richard Blumenthal’s willingness to lend a hand to the effort to save the papers. At the very least, it’s better to go down shouting than to slip quietly into the night.
They’ve only just begun. Not only are the newspaper moochers trying to argue that their services are so “vital” that they deserve taxpayer handouts, they are also arguing that they need federal newspaper subscription subsidies to help make voters smarter.