Behind the Hive Door

Way back in the olden thymes, American newspapers made the decision to give away their content on-line. It never made a lot of sense, as circulation had been falling for a long time and there was no model for monetizing on-line content, other than porn. It was a classic example of people getting caught up in a fad, without thinking through the consequences. The result has been decades of steep revenue declines, bankruptcies and layoffs at major broadsheets. Warren Buffet thinks all but three newspapers are doomed.

The funny thing about what has happened to newspapers and  the news media in general, is they still don’t seem to understand what has happened to them. Maybe in the business offices they see the reality of their situation, but the people in the media, like reporters and editors, seem clueless. It’s as if they believe some sort of bad juju is the cause of the trouble in their business. You see that in this post by Megan McArdle on the growing number of news sites that are adopting a subscription model for their sites.

For more than a century, magazines and newspapers were what’s known as a “two-sided market”: We sold subscriptions to you, our readers, and once you’d subscribed, we sold your eyeballs to our advertisers. That was necessary because, unbeknownst to you, your subscription dollars often didn’t even cover the cost of printing and delivering the physical pieces of paper. They rarely covered much, if any, of the cost of actually reporting and writing the stories printed on those pages. And you’d probably be astonished at how expensive it is to report a single, relatively simple story.

But that was okay, because we controlled a valuable pipeline to reader eyeballs — a pipeline advertisers wanted to fill with information about their products. You guys got your journalism on the cheap, and advertisers got the opportunity to tell you about the fantastic incentive package available to qualified buyers on the brand-new 1985 Chevy Impala.

Then the Internet came along, and suddenly, we didn’t own the only pipeline anymore. Anyone can throw up a Web page. And over the past 20 years, anyone did — far more than could support actual advertiser demand.

This is exactly backward. Sure, there was a period when the local paper often had a monopoly on news in their distribution area. Once radio and TV got better at delivering news, circulations declined. The reality is the newspaper was a delivery vehicle for employment ads, classifieds and circulars. The news was “free” because people were willing to pay a small fee for the ads, oddly enough. Sure, some portion of the readership would pay for the news, but nowhere near the majority of the subscriber base.

At the moment, in concession to your feelings on the subject, most paywalls are relatively porous. (Yes, we know about the tricks you use to subvert them.) But as more and more publications move behind paywalls, you should probably expect that to change. The less we have to worry about competition from free sites, the more those paywalls will tighten. (To be clear, this reflects my opinion based on analysis of industry-wide economics, not any knowledge of employer business strategy, current or former.)

And that will be a sad thing, because the old open Internet was a marvelous gift to readers, a vast cornucopia of great writing upon which we’ve been gorging for the past two decades. But there’s a limit to how long one can keep handing out gifts without some reciprocity. At the end of the day, however much information wants to be free, writers still want to get paid.

The amusing thing about this post is the writer carries on like media people were doing us a huge favor by providing “free news” on-line. Now the proles have to suck it up and pay the toll so the chattering skulls can continue in the lifestyle they have become so accustomed. The reality is going to much different. As it stand, the only news site to make a pay model work has been the Wall Street Journal. No one really knows if a subscriber model will even work, much less keep the army of chattering skulls in six figure salaries.

The sinister part of the post is “the less we have to worry about competition from free sites, the more those paywalls will tighten.” That’s their dream. If they can starve everyone else of revenue, then they will whither away. At that point the desperate public will rush to pay the establishment propaganda organs for the right to be lectured. These people are so ridiculously entitled, there is no doubt they believe this is possible. The fact is, if Megan McArdle gets hit by a bus tomorrow, more people will be worried about the bus.

The way to look at the news “business” is as something other than a business. For a long time, elite propaganda was financed by a monopoly of the delivery of small ads. Then a group of rich guys figured out how to take that business away. Cable news is facing the same problem. They got to tax every cable home a buck a month to finance government class propaganda. Now cord cutting is killing off that model. What’s about to happen is the rich people will have to pay for their own propaganda, by subsidizing these news sites.

What that means is far fewer chattering skulls living six figure lives. If Megan McArdle had to earn her keep like the various YouTube stars or alt-right figures, she would be taking in borders and doing laundry for the neighbors, in addition to her weekly column. But, none of these people can see what’s coming, because they believe their own BS. They really do think they are a priestly class that gives a greedy public the truth they demand. Tucker Carlson was right about these people. They are stupid rich kids. Deluded ones too.

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Kodos
Kodos
2 years ago

“The reality is the newspaper was a delivery vehicle for employment ads, classifieds and circulars.”
—-
Indeed! Most people who know the history of the decline of hard-copy newspapers know that Craiglist was a major killer of revenue for such papers.

Whiskey
Reply to  Kodos
2 years ago

I did an analysis of the LAT circulation. It peaked in 1988 iirc at a couple of million and declined rapidly from that peak.

Mexicans don’t read newspapers. Not even Spanish language ones. Per capita book purchases is the lowest among mud tier oecd nations. Mexicans don’t read

DeBeers Diamonds
DeBeers Diamonds
Reply to  Whiskey
2 years ago

Mexico has the highest “working hours” of the OECD countries. On paper they lack the time to engage in leisure reading.

A.B. Prosper
A.B. Prosper
Reply to  DeBeers Diamonds
2 years ago

Its cultural mostly,

NYT from a Mexican author living on Mexico city

https://www.nytimes.com/2013/03/06/opinion/the-country-that-stopped-reading.html

Joseph Moroco
Reply to  A.B. Prosper
2 years ago

Does not sound too much different from what Bryan Caplan says about the US in The Case Against Education.

Zeroth Tollrants
Zeroth Tollrants
Reply to  DeBeers Diamonds
2 years ago

Yeah, about that “hard working Hispanic” myth, I’ve been involved w/ manufacturing in Monterrey, MX for 2 decades and before that, 15 yrs in building contract work with large crews of Hispanic immigrants. The fact is, there are a percentage, maybe 25-30% who would classify as hard workers, but overall, the minute they aren’t being directly supervised, they are very similar to most black American employees. There’s a reason the old, (now raciss), stereotypes in the Warner Bros cartoons existed depicting a lot of S American characters taking “siestas.” I invite you to come to what we used to call… Read more »

Zeroth Tollrants
Zeroth Tollrants
Reply to  Zeroth Tollrants
2 years ago

I tried 3xs to use the word non-existant above, and it kept correcting to inexistant.
Is this some new lingo change that I missed hearing about?
Either way, I blame Millennials.

Shyuejinn MAA
Shyuejinn MAA
Member
Reply to  Whiskey
2 years ago

It’s not a matter of working hours. I’ve been to Acapulco, Oaxaca and other smaller cities in Mexico many times. There is a pronounced lack of quality reading matter: a few novels, popular magazines and a small selection of non-fiction. Mexico City was the only place with decent bookstores and a large enough readership to keep them in business. Not cheap, however: with the cost of living as high as it is, average Joes (Josés) certainly can’t afford to buy many books. Libraries are not well stocked, either.

Totally depressing for a multilingual nerd like me.

Monty James
2 years ago

“If Megan McArdle had to earn her keep like the various YouTube stars or alt-right figures, she would be taking in boarders and doing laundry for the neighbors, in addition to her weekly column.”

Don’t discount the possibility of ShavedMegan666 on MyFreeCams.com.

Karl McHungus
Karl McHungus
Reply to  Monty James
2 years ago

Ever see her? Look at her reflection in your shield…

Saml Adams
Saml Adams
Reply to  Karl McHungus
2 years ago

She’s quite engaging in person, but in a “if I’m going to be stuck next to a chatty person on a coast to coast flight” sort of way. Beyond that, yes, polish your shield.

Cloudbuster
Member
Reply to  Karl McHungus
2 years ago

Browsing through the DuckDuckGo image results, and noting a few of her younger pictures, I think she’s the nerdy serious girl type who never had any idea how to be pretty or sexy. You could probably primp, dress and makeup the 21-yo MM up into a decent 6.5 cam whore. 🙂

Karl McHungus
Karl McHungus
Reply to  Cloudbuster
2 years ago

If you had a time machine…

Saml Adams
Saml Adams
Reply to  Cloudbuster
2 years ago

She is pretty much dead serious, but in a good humored way. Not the weaned-on-pickle type you usually expect. Met her at a Bloomberg thing years ago when she was launching her book “The Up Side of Down”. But does have the weird libertarian thing going.

Karl McHungus
Karl McHungus
2 years ago

Trump is going to starve out all the fukkers leeching off the government tit.

DeBeers Diamonds
DeBeers Diamonds
Reply to  Karl McHungus
2 years ago

The stock market gains have boosted the endowments of the leftist universities, SPLC, etc. Lots of transnational oligarchs are also willing to keep enough journolists from having to get a real job.

David Wright
Member
2 years ago

The future is pop up ads, think about it Z, pop ups!
Taki just did it.

Let em beg like the rest with Patreon. Of course you are right, many more will be subsidized by the rich lefties or maybe they have already figured out how to stick it to us again.

Cloudbuster
Member
Reply to  David Wright
2 years ago

Haven’t been back to Taki’s since they disabled comments. I know when I am not wanted.

Frip
Member
Reply to  Cloudbuster
2 years ago

Do you not miss their content? Some really good writers, opinions and ideas over there. Why deprive yourself of that just because you can’t comment?

expatriot
expatriot
Reply to  Frip
2 years ago

The comments are at least as interesting as the article, usually more so. And not just at Taki’s, but anywhere.

Vizzini
Member
Reply to  Frip
2 years ago

There are plenty of smart writers in the world. I can get my fill of Sailer at Unz. I miss Goad a bit, but I’ll just buy his next book. Dalrymple is long, long past his prime. The rest I can live without. Removing the comments was a real smack in the face to their readership.

The comments section was often the best thing about the site.

Andrew
Andrew
2 years ago

So true about buying the paper for the ads. Back in the day some stores started their weekday sales on Sunday and others Wednesday. So, people would subscribe for those two days to get the sales flyers, then the paper would offer to throw in the rest of the week for “free”. With the advent of other sources for information, sales and what not, it was inevitable the papers would decline. It is going to be entertaining to watch what the “privileged class” in the newsrooms are going to do when their world comes crashing down.

Tim Newman
Reply to  Andrew
2 years ago

I heard stories from Australia of people snapping up the fresh copies from the back of the printworks, ripping out the classified section, and hurling the rest in a nearby skip – right under the noses of the journalists. Even then they didn’t realise their writings were worthless.

active pooter
Reply to  Tim Newman
2 years ago

and now you can get all sorts of stuff FREE off of craigslist…once more people start trading their castoff consumer goods, the economy is gonna go down even more

UKer
UKer
Reply to  Tim Newman
2 years ago

When I worked in newspapers (circa 1970-2000) the debate about newspapers gradually boiled down to where the TV programme(program) listings should be. There was even a semi-serious plan to put them on the back page and move sport inside. In the end, they were featured in the centre spread so everything else about the paper was nothing more than padding for another medium. The journalists, many of who thought they were ‘socialist workers’ on a par with coal miners, never noticed that people were buying the product just for a bunch of listings. But then journalists in my experience never… Read more »

Member
Reply to  Andrew
2 years ago

We subscribe to our local mid-sized Georgia college town paper only for the weekly ads and puzzles. They’ve tried moderating their editorial page but they’re still pretty lefty and AP driven. Recently we canceled our subscription because it cost more than it was worth. Immediately followed an offer for about 50% of the usual. When it goes back up, we’ll do it again.

Zeroth Tollrants
Zeroth Tollrants
Reply to  Henry_Lee
2 years ago

You mean you don’t subscribe to that quasi-commie rag, The Atlanta Urinal & Constipation? 😊
They would hound you to death for subs back in the 80s. Worse than dealing w/Jehovah Witnesses.
We get a free paper once a week here in N GA that covers issues that occur in about a 25-35 mi radius.
I read it for the police blotter.

joey junger
joey junger
2 years ago

I thought the solution for these people was to just go back to the old Hearst model, only instead of with tycoons and robber barons, we have Bezos and Carlos Slim and other billionaire pirates buying newspapers to settle grudges with enemies and trying to increase their piece of the pie, while throwing in just enough news to keep eyes on the paper (or website). A lot of what I’ve read at The New York Times or Washington Post in the last couple years is basically, “Don’t support Donald Trump and his Wall because I AM CHARLES FOSTER KANE!!!” Hell,… Read more »

Saml Adams
Saml Adams
Reply to  joey junger
2 years ago

May be close to the only one in NY struck by the irony that a guy who made his fortune fucking over poor Mexicans with the overpriced phone monopoly he bribed his way to, is the shot caller at the NYT.

J Clivas
Reply to  joey junger
2 years ago

Too many caulk zuckers

miforest
Member
2 years ago

I would happily pay for a real newspaper. but they don’t exist. I used to subscribe to the WSJ, national review, American spectator, etc. It didn’t take long to realize that they were establishment and neocon shills .
I currently pay for no media except basic cable . the wife likes watching baseball and hockey.

Zero
Zero
2 years ago

Brilliant. You nailed it.

Shrugger
Shrugger
2 years ago

The Washington Post should update its anti-Trump motto: Democracy dies in darkness, delusions die in the light of reality. Eh, too clunky.

Megan’s “journalist” pals think she’s one of the sharpest knives in the drawer. Hilarious, that.

Ryan
Ryan
Reply to  Shrugger
2 years ago

Democracy dies in darkness is a great motto. I don’t have the slightest clue what it’s supposed to mean but it sounds awesome. I imagine democracy walking down a dark alley with WaPo creeping up behind with a knife in hand.

Freddo
Freddo
2 years ago

“unbeknownst to you, your subscription dollars often didn’t even cover the cost of printing and delivering the physical pieces of paper.”

If journalist were not so condescending towards their readers, on top of being insular, biased and fairly ignorant, there would probably be a bigger market for their product.

Alzaebo
Alzaebo
Reply to  Freddo
2 years ago

Boy howdy! They could use their super-sleuth skills to tell us the details on this one’s tax dodge, that one’s program skim, the other one’s corrupt payoff…

The demand is so great for that that people are doing it, in detail, for free.
Proves that the official media don’t care how much money they lose, profit isn’t the goal. They’re mouthpieces, only used in swinging the hidden deal, where the real money gets made.

Max
Max
Reply to  Freddo
2 years ago

In fairness to McArdle, how many people did know that? Almost certainly fewer than 1%. Probably way below that. But yes, I wouldn’t phrase that so smugly. I would say “unbeknownst to many subscribers…”

Pimpkin's Nephew
Pimpkin's Nephew
Reply to  Max
2 years ago

I would say “unknown to many subscribers”, because ‘unbeknownst’ is an ugly and etymologically challenged expression, like ‘irregardless’, used by writers without an ear for natural diction or, come to think of it, self-awareness.

Tim Newman
2 years ago

Only an idiot writes for money. You write because you want to, and if you can make money from it, so much the better. But if you’re writing solely in the hope of making money, you’re almost certain to end up flat broke.

chedolf
Reply to  Tim Newman
2 years ago

“No man but a blockhead ever wrote except for money.”
– Samuel Johnson

Pimpkin's Nephew
Pimpkin's Nephew
Reply to  chedolf
2 years ago

There seems to be a fundamental disagreement here, between Mr Newman and Mr Johnson.

Third option: Knut Hamsun said that he liked writing because it killed time.

He earned a Nobel Prize, and (somewhat later) opprobrium as a Nazi sympathizer.

Mixed results; but he lived to 93, so there’s that.

Saml Adams
Saml Adams
2 years ago

Only hold two subscriptions outside of professional journals, WSJ and Businessweek. The density of information in both for stuff I have to keep track of for work purposes is almost the sole reason. It’s efficient. Everything else I can get for free.

Alzaebo
Alzaebo
Reply to  Saml Adams
2 years ago

Investors Business Daily. Talk about cost efficient!

dearieme
dearieme
2 years ago

“The fact is, if Megan McArdle gets hit by a bus tomorrow, more people will be worried about the bus.” Not I. I know the bar is low but I rate MM above the great bulk of newspaper opiners. As a journalist she’s not a patch on, for instance, Steve Sailer, but I’m not sure anyone is.

Zeroth Tollrants
Zeroth Tollrants
Reply to  dearieme
2 years ago

If it wasn’t a felony, I’d bribe the bus driver and pay him extra for backing up.

Glenfilthie
Glenfilthie
Member
2 years ago

You saw that one too, eh Z? For me, browsing the mass media on any given day is like being trolled by little girls. STUPID little girls. But unfortunately they have no choice. The only way left for them to draw in the rubes is to be edgy and controversial. Unfortunately that requires intellect and sophistication that most journalists don’t have… so they end up trolling their own readership. Ask the fags at the NRO where that goes. The piece you have is one of the very few that actually give you something to think about – after you’ve been… Read more »

Pimpkin's Nephew
Pimpkin's Nephew
Reply to  Glenfilthie
2 years ago

“So they end up trolling their own readership”…

Bravo. Nothing inspires a loyal reader of a dying paper to stick with the brand more than a hectoring about his ignorance in simple business arithmetic.

MM is saying here, to her gentry liberal readers, that they are to blame for the fact her paycheck shall be lower, and lower, and lower, until she’s reduced to being a performance artist at one of the Metro stations.

Dutch
Dutch
2 years ago

Newspapers and magazines used to be kept underfoot to suck up a bit of time spent on the bus, waiting in the doctor’s waiting room, or while eating breakfast. Or for buying or selling something. We have the Internet for all that now.

When an author or publication becomes insufferable (I’m talking to you, Megan), boom, gone, one click. No canceling of subscriptions. Nice.

Pimpkin's Nephew
Pimpkin's Nephew
Reply to  Dutch
2 years ago

As a recovering ‘civ-nat’ kind of guy, I miss the the 80s, when I lived in the heart of Empire. The Post was liberal, of course, but not the irresponsible monstrosity it is today – way worse than the NYT. In the golden era of Ronaldus, it was fun to browse the handful of communist bookshops in Dupont Circle, and buy weird stuff like Bakunin’s memoirs or the autobiography of Leonid Brezhnev, Kropotkin’s revolutionary pamphlets, stuff like that. I live in a small town, and I haven’t checked this out – but I like to think I have the only… Read more »

Joseph Suber
Joseph Suber
Reply to  Pimpkin's Nephew
2 years ago

More multi-culti, more crazy.

Zeroth Tollrants
Zeroth Tollrants
Reply to  Pimpkin's Nephew
2 years ago

Nothing has changed. Libs and Conservatives still have the same shared fundamental view of where civilization should go, the only difference is Cons will offer us plebs some anal lube, a promise to go slowly & throw in a 3% tax cut for the rich.

bad guest
bad guest
2 years ago

I think it was Mencken who said the purpose of journalism was to fill in the white space around the ads in the newspaper.

DeBeers Diamonds
DeBeers Diamonds
2 years ago

I don’t think we’ve seen the last of the Old Media. As long as there are oligarchs with a need for mass-market propaganda, there will be some kind of “free” publication.

Running a media outlet at a loss is tax-deductible. Using the services of registered lobbyists is not. Some of these guys didn’t get rich by accident.

Karl McHungus
Karl McHungus
2 years ago

The L.A. Times is held in such low regard, you can get it for free. Thing is you can’t get them to stop delivering it once you sign up. Even for free it is a bad deal. And who the fukk wants to handle news ink soaked rags!?

Glenfilthie
Glenfilthie
Member
Reply to  Karl McHungus
2 years ago

The nation’s budgies might disagree! 😉

Pimpkin's Nephew
Pimpkin's Nephew
Reply to  Karl McHungus
2 years ago

Especially in LA. Here, we value newsprint to start fires in the 5 months of cold. A free paper is free fuel. But, alas, they still want money for their product, so I chop up junk mail instead, to start fires.

Drake
Drake
2 years ago

It is amusing that they think anyone would pay for access. My local town paper is free. Reuters, AP, and the BBC are free. Monster, Craigs list, and Ebay are free. FoxNews and business as well as CNN are free. ESPN and most other sports news sites are free.

With full access to the NY Times or similar publications – what exactly would I be getting in addition to the stuff mentioned above?

Kentucky Headhunter
2 years ago

“This is exactly backward.”

It’s ironic how her article is a perfect example of why newspapers are dying. She basically gets everything wrong, while stressing how important the job of newspapers is to get “information” to the people is.

“And that will be a sad thing, because the old open Internet was a marvelous gift to readers, a vast cornucopia of great writing upon which we’ve been gorging for the past two decades.”

Just about none of which came from main stream sources such as newspapers, who didn’t say anything that wasn’t part of the approved narrative.

Saml Adams
Saml Adams
Reply to  thezman
2 years ago

Well, when you go Upper East Side to DC…Same weird bubble that had a couple of women and their friends seriously debating whether or not it was ok to keep getting the snot beat out of them by the NY AG and keeping their mouths shut, since he was so valuable to the “cause”.

Severian
Reply to  Saml Adams
2 years ago

Heh. Or Whatsherface the reporterette offering to blow Bill Clinton “just to thank him for keeping abortion legal.” Bubble dwellers have been reallllly weird for a long time (in fact, that’s what should’ve gotten newspaper folk thinking, all the way back in the Lewinsky years. Does anyone doubt similar shenanigans went on in the JFK White House (or, for that matter, the James K. Polk White House?) But we had the internet then, so the people actually knew about it this time).

Zeroth Tollrants
Zeroth Tollrants
Reply to  Severian
2 years ago

Nina Burleigh. I never could figure out why that old nag was so juiced about the baby snuffing biz, back in the day. It wasn’t like she was going to be needing their services.

LFMayor
LFMayor
2 years ago

We’ve moved beyond the point where it is justifiable to use the word “main” to describe these fading dullards.
“Weak Stream” would better suit them.

Tom
Tom
2 years ago

Hey mission accomplished! Let’s destroy Hollywood next. My coworker uses a jail broken fire stick to stream just about everything without paying.

Frip
Member
2 years ago

The waves of Lefty kids coming out of the schools are already rolling strong. And they’re going to triple every few years. The future is young liberals. They will pay the paywalls. This is the unspoken assumption of Megan’s piece. And she’s probably right.

Dutch
Dutch
Reply to  Frip
2 years ago

Pay the paywalls to subscribe to all the “correct” publications. You can list them on your Facebook page, like our grandparents used to fan the magazines out on the coffee table for the friends to see when they visited.

These people are “journalism majors”. Professionals! And don’t you forget it. You may have your own opinions, and you can post them on-line. But the “professionals” know how to “curate” the news, and assist you in understanding what you need to know. People will fall for anything, once they fall under the sway of credentialism.

Frip
Member
Reply to  Dutch
2 years ago

I barely follow you. Maybe try writing for clarity over cuteness. I’m just saying that Megan’s assumption is that most people are liberals and becoming more Leftist by the day. (However you slice it Hillary…a disliked person and awful politician, won a huge amount of votes). This vast and multiplying Leftist section of America will indeed pay to read their favorite sites. Which is just about every “mainstream”/far left site out there. Because they’ll be forced to, and will go along.

Karl McHungus
Karl McHungus
Reply to  Frip
2 years ago

The leftist cohort in America is shrinking, not growing.

Vizzini
Member
Reply to  Karl McHungus
2 years ago

Not as long as we keep shipping them in by plane, boat, caravan and coyote.

james wilson
james wilson
Member
Reply to  Frip
2 years ago

Silly Frip, nobody, including progs, pays for tripe, or ever has. Progs spent serious coin to promote prog talk radio, which also flopped. Young people won’t even pay for something good. What progs own is the K-12 indoctrination centers. That should prove enough.

Zeroth Tollrants
Zeroth Tollrants
Reply to  Frip
2 years ago

No. You have a fundamental misunderstanding of current/future racial demography and the cultural habits of those demos. White, Jewish and the small slice of talented tenther minority Boomers and older GenXers are the overwhelming majority of legacy media content, with a smaller number of the racial demographic of Millennials rounding out their readership. Over 50% of a large portion of Gen Z is non-white. Besides not being a generation that reads much that’s longer than a meme, in general, non-whites for the most part, don’t read at all. Particularly Am blacks, Hispanics, non-Han Asians, Mid Easterners and African immigrants/children of… Read more »

Rod1963
Rod1963
Reply to  Frip
2 years ago

Actually white libs aren’t even reproducing in enough numbers to maintain their population. The segment that is growing are composed of blacks and Mexicans and they don’t read books or periodicals. Most are so illiterate or plain dumb even if they did read a newspaper they wouldn’t understand what’s being written about. Look at the liberal MSM networks – no one watches them. Every major dead tree lib paper is on life support because most whites refuse to read them The young lib whites get their info from free on-line sources. For them the notion of paying for news is… Read more »

PawPaw
PawPaw
Reply to  Rod1963
2 years ago

I’ve had conversations with young white Libs who who are claiming to be well informed about current events will then look you right in the eye and tell you that their only source of news is Colbert at night.
The stupid. It burns.

Saml Adams
Saml Adams
Reply to  PawPaw
2 years ago

That and agreeing with each other on Facebook…

Vizzini
Member
Reply to  Rod1963
2 years ago

They don’t have to be smart to vote for collectivism and gibmes, just like they’ve done for generations in their home countries.

LineInTheSand
LineInTheSand
Reply to  Frip
2 years ago

.

MBlanc46
MBlanc46
2 years ago

And Megan McArdke is far fromthe worst of them.

BillH
BillH
2 years ago

Three dozen commentors, and not one ‘fessed up to buying the newspaper for the comics, in addition to the employment ads, classifieds and circulars. We lived in a bunch of cities in 23 years of pre-internet (really pre-computer) active duty, and always, but always picked our newspaper by the quality of the comics. Everything else in them was the same no matter the paper.

Dutch
Dutch
Reply to  BillH
2 years ago

Good point! When The Far Side and Calvin & Hobbes both were gone is when I stopped looking at the daily paper. The best part of the Saturday Financial Times was the Sudoku, and they dropped that a while back. Their crosswords full of British idioms are impossible for this Yank to complete.

David Wright
Member
Reply to  BillH
2 years ago

I miss Alley Oop

Karl McHungus
Karl McHungus
Reply to  David Wright
2 years ago

Just watch videos of michelle obama.

Rod1963
Rod1963
Reply to  Karl McHungus
2 years ago

She is very hard on the eyes.

PawPaw
PawPaw
Reply to  Rod1963
2 years ago

For some reason I can’t get the words” hard-on” and “Michelle Obama” to make sense in the same paragraph. Is that just me?

Vizzini
Member
Reply to  BillH
2 years ago

Comicskingdom.com and joshreads.com are two of the few sites for which I pay a regular subscription fee.

Max
Max
2 years ago

Boarders

Joseph Suber
Joseph Suber
2 years ago

The newspaper people are just organs of Big Tech now. The only time the chatterer matters is when they get a big repost or re-tweet.

Victor Davis Hanson yesterday: “The reputation of Big Tech is one of hyper-partisan politics, data miners, snoops, Bowdlerizers and censors, monopolists, progressive multibillionaires, and adolescents in arrested development who exempt themselves from the consequences of what their ideologies inflict on others.”

Sounds like aspirational material for newspaper people everywhere.

Dutch
Dutch
Reply to  Joseph Suber
2 years ago

Journalists to Big Tech are like DC politicians to the elites. They bark loudly at everything, but their true function is to protect the moats of their masters, in exchange for dishes of dog food.

wholy1
wholy1
2 years ago

To reprise: the ” ‘Net ” is Gutenberg v2.GAZILLION. ‘Nuf said.

Christopher S. Johns
Christopher S. Johns
2 years ago

McArdle is just another Ivy League-educated, DC “opinion-maker” chattering class parasite hustling for “exposure.” Her mind revolves around thoughts such as these: “After my latest WaPo column maybe George Stephanopoulos will call and put me on a round-table this Sunday discussing the implications of Trump’s NAFTA moves! Hurray!” Someone needs to sit these people down and explain some things: No one out here in terra incognita knows who you are or cares about what you have to say. You are irrelevant. And no one is going to pay one damn dime for your opinions, because they’re meaningless gibberish. Historical analogies… Read more »

Kentucky Headhunter
Reply to  Christopher S. Johns
2 years ago

Tara Incognita would be a great stage name for the first trans-woman wrestler in the WWE. Is the WWE still a thing? Smackdown? Anyone?

Altitude Zero
Altitude Zero
2 years ago

Speaking of Old Media, National Review has now reached levels of “Cucked” that should not even be possible in this space-time continuum.

https://www.nationalreview.com/2018/05/transgenderism-compromise-necessary-to-preserve-social-order/

David Wright
Member
Reply to  Altitude Zero
2 years ago

My God! My son just sent me that. Just when you think they cucked as much as is possible, this.

The first line:\
I doubt that many Americans would disagree that the country’s conversation about gay rights is far more mature and considered than it was two decades ago.
—Mature and considered— Krikey

Altitude Zero
Altitude Zero
Reply to  David Wright
2 years ago

Yes, the sooner this abomination dies, the better. I expect them to sell out gun owners next.

Vizzini
Member
Reply to  David Wright
2 years ago

I don’t know what word represents “Krikey x 10” … but that.

Christopher S. Johns
Christopher S. Johns
Reply to  Altitude Zero
2 years ago

“The price of social peace is that we must give leftist lunatics everything that they desire, as soon as they desire it, with no regard as to what the cost of such a capitulation will be. But we will do so in the pages of NR, call ourselves high-minded and pat ourselves on the back. Bill Buckley would have approved.”

Silly, naive me. I used to think that only the left was insane.

Eskyman
Member
Reply to  Altitude Zero
2 years ago

Visiting NRO these days is like walking blindfolded and barefoot through downtown San Francisco. You never know what you’ll step in, but it’s almost certain to be bad.

Frip
Member
Reply to  Altitude Zero
2 years ago

Holy shit. I expected this from NR maybe 10 years from now, but already? What is happening? That article is something out of a woman’s magazine at the hair salon. Like Heston I feel like running through the streets yelling “National Review is People! It’s Peeeoooppplllllle!”

LineInTheSand
LineInTheSand
Reply to  Frip
2 years ago

We used to say that conservatism conserved the liberalism of 20 years ago. Then we revised it to 10 years ago, then 5. Now conservatism conserves the liberalism of 1 year ago.

The entire conservative movement is becoming like the conservatives I knew in California: they agree with the left on almost everything, they just believe that we should get tax cuts as well.

J Clivas
Reply to  LineInTheSand
2 years ago

Fiscal conservatives but social liberals to the core.

Ris_Eruwaedhiel
Ris_Eruwaedhiel
Reply to  J Clivas
2 years ago

They like big government well enough, but just don’t want to pay for it.

A.B. Prosper
A.B. Prosper
Reply to  Altitude Zero
2 years ago

This doesn’t surprise me. The people liable to read that rag are ancient on the whole, its a place where 49 year old Jonah Goldberg is the voice of young America Such people are terrified of social disorder , of anything however small upsetting the economy and therefore their pensions and like old people with little legacy could care less about tomorrow so long as they are dead before everyone else gets eaten In that sense that subset of the very old are worse than Leftists who at least do think of a glorious if stupid future The truth is… Read more »

Vizzini
Member
Reply to  Altitude Zero
2 years ago

Standing athwart history yelling, “Sure, why not?”

FaCubeItches
FaCubeItches
2 years ago

Newspaper reporters started thinking that they mattered. They forgot that they exist *solely* to fill in the blank spaces between coupons. Once that happened, the papers were finished.

David Wright
Member
Reply to  FaCubeItches
2 years ago

Then they became journalists.

Severian
2 years ago

Remember Obamacare? It’s a tax, baby! The Supremes have ruled that the government can compel you to buy a product you neither want nor need (nor can afford). You’ll be shocked at how fast “access to professional journalism” becomes a fundamental Constitutional right. Your WashPo “bronze level” premium is $395/month.

Din C. Nuffin
Din C. Nuffin
Reply to  Severian
2 years ago

Severian – Corporations buy legislation requiring their products be purchased all the time, it’s cheaper than hiring salesmen or advertising. The latest is backup cameras on new cars, how many fatal accidents occur in reverse?

Frip
Member
Reply to  Din C. Nuffin
2 years ago

Not many. But as an aside, when I was a kid my neighbor backed into a little girl and killed her.

Severian
Reply to  Din C. Nuffin
2 years ago

Not the same thing, as you still (for now!) have the option to not buy a car in the first place, or buy a used car. You have no option with “health insurance” — you either purchase “health insurance” or pay a crippling fine to not buy it (the automotive analogy would be a law fining you half the price of what you would’ve paid for the car new if you don’t have a backup cam installed into your old jalopy). Soon “news” will go the same way — you can either subscribe to the WaPo, or pay a crippling… Read more »

Frip
Member
Reply to  Severian
2 years ago

That’s a damn fine looking post you got there Severian. A few years ago I’d have thought you were messing around. But I can easily see the scenario you lay out coming true.

PawPaw
PawPaw
Reply to  Severian
2 years ago

Serverian;
Unfortunately your predictions are probably closer to becoming reality than we realize. While the convolutions of Obunghole’s “net neutrality” scam were beyond my minimal understanding of the intrawebs,their shrieking protests were enough to warrant a thumbs down. And what was with the sellout of the domains to foreign countries? What will come of that?
Also, slightly off-topic, I thought I was the only one here old enough to remember the Polk Administration.
Well, except maybe for Van der Luen.

Severian
Reply to  PawPaw
2 years ago

I have strong opinions on the James K. Polk administration. And don’t get me started on the Whigs!!

Mal Reynolds
Member
2 years ago

God damn your good. Well said.