Monday, November 07, 2005


Howard Kurtz discusses the low morale and loss of profits in the journalism business, particularly at the NY Times and other newspapers:

But for all the anguish among the staff, people at the Times are equally upset that the paper is cutting 45 newsroom jobs, with profits at the parent company dropping by more than half this quarter.

The journalism business is suffering from a double-barreled depression that stretches far beyond the travails of a single paper. If the industry were a person, a shrink would prescribe Prozac.

As I look at the serious ethical breaches of journalists who believe the ends justify the means; the continual use of unamed sources; the ubiquitous editorializing in what should be straightforward news stories; and their tendency to confuse their personal biases as "objective" and "neutral" facts--I am not at all inclined to prescibe Prozac, or any other antidepressant for that matter. My observation is that any depression that they may be feeling is only a minor symptom.

On the contrary, Kurtz has the wrong diagnosis and the wrong treatment. The usual prescription for a thought disorder with delusional thinking; combined with inappropriate, manic, and grandiose behavior-- is an antipsychotic.

It may already be too late to intervene for optimal symptom control.

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