Covering the least of these

January 21, 2008
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It isnâ??t often these days that we see deep, serious reporting on poverty that helps explain the problem and makes us think.

In a recent interview, Washington Post columnist E.J. Dionne argued that the subject has been edged out of news coverage by the very way newspapers are structured.

â??Newspapers are built to cover the wealthy and the famous much more than they are built to cover the working class or the poor,â?? Dionne said in Columbia Journalism Review, a trade publication. â??There are entire business sections devoted to what the people running big companies do.â??

Or, he could have added, entire newspapers, like IBJ.

Dionne went on to say there are good reasons for the structures. But the result is that poor and even middle-class people are getting little attention.

What do you think? While news organizations cover CEOs and others who make big decisions and large paychecks, should those organizations also be putting more energy into reporting on those who are less fortunate?

Have we Americans become so enamored with business that weâ??ve left behind those who havenâ??t â??made it?â??
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  • Only guessing here but...I think newspapers are funded by advertisers. And advertisers are only interested in advertising to customers wealthy enough to purchase their products or services. Therefore, most newspapers are going to write stories only applicable to those individuals targeted by their advertisers. So, unless you live in some non-capitalistic country like Cuba, it's unlikely any U.S. newspaper is going to change soon.
  • So the rich & famous are the only ones that purchase advertised products?
    Uh no.

    Perhaps its more to do with what the readership demands - the worship of
    celebrity.

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  1. PJ - Mall operators like Simon, and most developers/ land owners, establish individual legal entities for each property to avoid having a problem location sink the ship, or simply structure the note to exclude anything but the property acting as collateral. Usually both. The big banks that lend are big boys that know the risks and aren't mad at Simon for forking over the deed and walking away.

  2. Do any of the East side residence think that Macy, JC Penny's and the other national tenants would have letft the mall if they were making money?? I have read several post about how Simon neglected the property but it sounds like the Eastsiders stopped shopping at the mall even when it was full with all of the national retailers that you want to come back to the mall. I used to work at the Dick's at Washington Square and I know for a fact it's the worst performing Dick's in the Indianapolis market. You better start shopping there before it closes also.

  3. How can any company that has the cash and other assets be allowed to simply foreclose and not pay the debt? Simon, pay the debt and sell the property yourself. Don't just stiff the bank with the loan and require them to find a buyer.

  4. If you only knew....

  5. The proposal is structured in such a way that a private company (who has competitors in the marketplace) has struck a deal to get "financing" through utility ratepayers via IPL. Competitors to BlueIndy are at disadvantage now. The story isn't "how green can we be" but how creative "financing" through captive ratepayers benefits a company whose proposal should sink or float in the competitive marketplace without customer funding. If it was a great idea there would be financing available. IBJ needs to be doing a story on the utility ratemaking piece of this (which is pretty complicated) but instead it suggests that folks are whining about paying for being green.

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