News From Terre Haute, Indiana

April 6, 2013

RONN MOTT: Finding the news

Ronn Mott
Special to the Tribune-Star

---- — Except for the local news on your favorite TV station, I’m having a more difficult time finding stories I would call news. I had high hopes for Charlie Rose on the CBS Morning Show, who has been a man of instinctive, good interview skills and who has a vast amount of knowledge of many things. However, his show seems to be more concerned about things we call feature material in a newspaper.  

We’re not picking on CBS here, but it is in general less news and more fluff than ever before on the TV channels purporting to be news channels. According to the New York Times, the news reporting staffs are shrinking … fewer reporters, fewer reported stories. A Pew Research study found that many of the newscasts devoted to stories about government and politics fell to 3 percent last year. Are you kidding me? The Republican Party primaries seemed to flood the airwaves, then the Democrats got into it and then we had a national election. I find it ironic there are fewer stories than in the past.

MSNBC leans toward the “left,” and Fox News has a “right-wing” propaganda department. Then there’s CNN, which is 24/7 news, but they keep trying to make stars out of the people who were reporters. It doesn’t always work.

I hate to tell the good American news effort this sad tale of woe. I often go to BBC America to get more news. Even CCTV, which is Chinese/English news, has more actual news and even less of their propaganda than you find on all of our American news channels.

So this statement is not going to be so unusual. It may not be as fast and it may be only once per day, but the local newspaper, in this case the Tribune-Star, delivers more news and comments than any other source I can get my hands on.  

Now, that may sound like a sense of patting oneself on the back, since this is appearing in the Tribune-Star, but that isn’t my purpose. The purpose is for the American news stations to give us actual news stories and less trash. There’s a war going on somewhere in the world all the time. And there are earthquakes, tidal waves, crashing economics and, of course, death and pestilence.  

I hope some of you feel the way I do. Tell me the news. Let me decide if it’s good or bad. I just want the story straight up … you know, the old fashioned way. Who, what, when, where and why.

Ronn Mott, a longtime radio personality in Terre Haute, writes commentaries for the Tribune-Star. His pieces are published online Tuesday and Thursday on Tribstar.com, and in the print and online editions on Saturday.