Thursday, May 18, 2006

Why Cost-Cutting Is Not A Good Idea ...

This says more about the state of journalism in America today than anything else I’ve read. From the New York Times:

“Two Investigative Reporters Leave

Donald Barlett and James Steele, two investigative reporters who have chronicled the vicissitudes of the American economy for Time magazine since 1997, have lost their jobs in a budget squeeze.

The reporting duo, who together won two Pulitzer Prizes and two national magazine awards, were on the payroll of Time Inc. Their jobs were among about 650 that the company has eliminated in the last six months.

John Huey, editor in chief of Time Inc., said that as he cut corporate costs, he sought unsuccessfully to place the two men on the payroll of a company magazine.

"They're very good but very expensive, and I couldn't get anyone to take them on their budget," Mr. Huey said. "We'll miss their work."

Mr. Steele, 63, who began working with Mr. Barlett, 69, at The Philadelphia Inquirer in 1971, said: "We've had a great run at Time, but apparently the decision was made at the corporate level not to fund this kind of work."

These are the guys who exposed our country's dysfunctional tax system; its whacked-out medical system; exposed the problems with post-9/11 security and so much more.

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