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History

After This Conflict Is Won

These last years have been difficult, and one can reasonably expect worse from Trumpism before that ideology is consigned – as it will be – to the political outer darkness. A necessary condition for optimism is an understanding of the present from which one can build a better future. (Local boosterism and babbittry are failures…

Sullivan on Public Officials as Reporters

Editors of small-town newspapers sometimes lack the judgment (and self-respect) to remain independent of government.  During these lapses of decision-making, one finds that elected or appointed officials become, themselves, reporters on their own stories.  (For a case like this in Whitewater involving a school board member, see Public Officials Should Not Be Reporters.) Margaret Sullivan, of the…

Hep the Hepcat (December 1946)

From the Library of Congress: Caption from Down Beat: Probably no dance band ever has played to so many empty tables consistently as the Sam Donahue ork [orchestra] during the recent double booking with Lionel Hampton at the Aquarium. The operators decreed that Sam should play afternoons, and the place isn’t open in the afternoon!…

The Media’s ‘Post-Advertising’ Future

Nationally and locally, the media (whether profit or non-profit) continue their significant transformation: the decline of print, the rise of (interactive) digital media, and the collapse of a middle-of-the-road partnership of boosterism between mediocre newspapers and middling officials. Print’s doomed, and so is digital that merely repeats the same banal style of contemporary print. Traditional…