Does the New York Times live in this century?

I seriously doubt it. Their logic is of another time and place, and  what they see -- and don't -- is very telling as to why journalism is no longer a thing.

They have some rambling piece with the following headline:

When a Local Paper Gets New Owners, Partisan Strife Hits Its Doorstep

When any media outlet gets new owners, partisan strife hits the fan. I chronicled one example in my book OutFoxed: Rupert Murdoch's war on journalism when News Corps bought a previously independent station and then wanted to veer hard Right. 

The book came out in 2005.

This is not some sort of "local newspaper" thing. When new owners take control, they want to put their imprint, and people who work there do not like a disruption of any routine because they memorized the script and broke in the old bosses, and now there is new rules and games with new rigs, and chances are that the new owners are going to break your code, and then you'll be without a job.

The article revolves around the  Santa Clarita Valley Signal, and its backstory is typical of many other places where the new boss has ideas that the old boss didn't, and now people are throwing fits because people do not like change, let alone an outsider whose beliefs do not march lockstep with their own.

In other words, xenophobia.

But the Times doesn't bother to state why the original owners jettisoned the cargo in the first place. The opening of the article has some folksy logic how everything here was just grand until the Mean Old Republican bought the newspaper, never mind that there was no Good Old Democrat who saved the newspaper in sight:

The paper has a circulation of about 8,000, a newsroom with about 24 reporters and editors and the slightly misleading slogan of “Your community, delivered every day” — the paper is printed and delivered Tuesday through Saturday. For decades, it has been a reliable source of information about the Santa Clarita Valley, a region of more than 300,000 people that includes the city of Santa Clarita and communities such as Valencia, Newhall and Saugus, all part of Los Angeles County.

“It was the one place where people had a kind of town square,” said Anthony Breznican, 41, an entertainment journalist who lives in the Valley. “The great thing about it was that it was very local.” 

For a lead, it could not be more manipulative.

Obviously, the newspaper had problems because you do not shed something that is working for you.

So there is more to the story than is being told for the sake of a fake narrative.

Then we have another feint in the piece:

And in smaller, rural communities, the decimation of the newspaper industry is being keenly felt. Since 2004, more than 1,800 newspapers have died or merged with other companies, according to research by the University of North Carolina’s Center for Innovation and Sustainability in Local Media.

This has left roughly 200 “news deserts” without any local newspaper coverage, and even more areas where a single source dominates, said the study’s leader, Penelope Muse Abernathy, the university’s Knight professor of journalism and digital media economics.

Those numbers are growing. “There are more counties than you can count that are right on the line right now,” Ms. Abernathy said.

Why is there an abandonment of newspapers?

Because they weren't being the watchdogs as the article implies. Local papers covered easy events, and then, when that whole Internet thing came, people had another source to get their information without the middle man. The Times always glosses over this point.

They keep assuming that people cannot communicate without a medium, as if they were psychics who were the conduit between the living and the dead.

Journalism was replaced. 

The photographs in the piece are typical propaganda of activists and citizens looking oh-so-very serious, something typical of partisan newspapers that skew right.

But the stupidest part of the piece comes here:

Some residents of Santa Clarita have taken to Facebook groups and Twitter to make their voices heard.

Like, just now in 2018?

They haven't been griping on social media before?

Hello, New York Times! People have been doing that for years!

That's the reason they don't rely on journalism anymore.

And the brainless buzzword "news desert" is quite the knee-slapper: people are relying on citizen journalism directly through social media.

They think their opinions are superior to journalism's opinions and have for a very long time.

So there are a bunch of discontented white people in California who want everything their own way. That is the sum total of the Times' babbling propaganda piece.

That's not even news. That is enabling and validating middle class ennui and ignorance. These days, it is very posh to whine as you move goal posts and complain how that group called They aren't cleaning up your messes and making life perfect for you, while you pick issues that have no meaning while ignoring the real rot because that would mean being wrong and flawed and then having to do something about it yourself.

It is 2018, and journalists have no idea about their times and place. None. They want that magic wand to make everything good again. Not happening. Deal with it.

Times have changed. So should the Times...