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Making American Journalism Great and Different

Making American Journalism Great and Different

Laura Flanders

A great divide is shaping up in the newspaper business between those who want to make American Journalism “great again” and those who believe it has never been great but could be. It’ll come as no surprise to anyone where I fall.

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Without authentic journalists, of which you Laura are certainly one;
calling for and demanding freedom for Julian Assange; American
journalism isn’t going to be either “Great or Different.” Just the same
corporate state propaganda.


I love the idea of going back to the small and building away from the entrenched “news is money people.” I kind of like M-FALA which would stand for, " Make First Amendment Live Again." : )


Every thing that COULD be great becomes something far less than that and in fact exert a negative influence on a society when the man goal is changed to generating profit.

Money and the desire for it holds every society back.


Killing off corrupt politicians politically before they destroy constitutional rights protecting journalism, is a start.

Legislating against political interference ever happening again, is one of the next steps.

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Education is the key.

Ever since my folks taught my brother and I the proper way to handle money, I have never looked at it differently. Even when I had little to none.

Must have come after I found and occasionally raided their change jar for a nickel here, a dime there.

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Ok, I’ll bite. What is the proper way to handle money? Even better, what is the proper way to think about money? What is money??

My folks, born in 20, and 21, never bought anything unless they had the cash to buy it.

The only item I remember them paying for over a period of time, was the house they raised my brother and I in.

The idea that, “if you can’t afford it, i.e.- you don’t have the money to purchase it outright,” well, don’t purchase it until you have the cash.

Of course there was a thing called layaway back in the day, that allowed you to hold an item until which time you could pay it off before you took possession of it.

Needless to say, with this philosophy of not buying anything until you actually needed it and had the funds to purchase it as well, I grew up with few possessions, by rationalizing my lack of needing them.

Subsequently, I managed to save a lot more than I spent.

I retired at 54 from a great company that provided not only a pension, but also profit sharing.

That was nearly 15 years ago, and I haven’t needed to touch either.

Stupid, huh?


All very good, but I have to say to the readers of Common Dreams and other news aggregators on the left like TruthOut, Counterpunch, etc., that while it’s great that you read these articles, and we alternative journalists who write them, like Laura here (I’ve always been a fan!), certainly appreciate them running our work, you, the readers, need to recognize that what you’re reading is not being compensated by these aggregators. They run them for free, and won’t even consider running just a part of them with a link to the original source, so that at least the source publication could get noticed and perhaps visited directly in the future.
More importantly, whether you read us writers here at DC, or at TO or CP or someplace else, if you appreciate the journalism you are getting, you should occasionally take the time (it only takes a couple of your precious minutes) to jump over to our sites and pop us a few dollars as a tip for our work. For Laura, you can go to LauraFlanders.com. There’s a “donate” button on the top bar of her site. Give her a little cash if you appreciate her work. For me, if you read pieces here that I write, hop over to www.ThisCantBeHappening.net and drop a few bucks on us. We don’t ask for much. $5 per reader per year would allow us do to this work full-time. If you want real journalism, don’t just whine about the sh*t the mainstream media are offering. Support real journalism at its source. (And support CommonDreams.org itself too!)

Dave Lindorff
founding editor of ThisCantBeHappening.net

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Jimmy Dore and Greg Palast again. This stuff is getting really good.


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Sounds like we had identical parents where money is concerned, and I agree with the rest. I have to depart starting with I retired at 54. And the rest is unfathomable. All my working days left me and my honey enough to pay the monthly insurance premiums with a little over a hundred bucks extra.
That will get better when the better half goes on medicare and we can give up the BC/BS, and knock the life insurance down another 25%

I graduated from journalism school in 1981 with an already entrenched and outspoken mistrust of the mass media. Certainly an awareness of the potential problems was included in the curriculum, but I went quite a ways past those tepid criticisms. I then worked for more than a quarter century as a journalist, including stints as a small town weekly reporter and editor, daily reporter, public relations writer. I was outspoken about matters regarding the environment, big government, corporate dominance, the military industrial complex, and more. Many topics that are routinely ignored were fair game for my columns and editorials, and the stories always included both topical and human interest elements.

So I was actually a pretty authentic journalist, took pride in what I thought the profession was supposed to be all about, and in the end I just got sick of the entrenched mediocrity and self-censorship, insincere, shallow and incomplete discussion of the news, tepid, vanilla crap that made me want to vomit. Don’t write this, don’t write that, you can’t say this, blah blah blah. That wasn’t my style, but I was continually compelled to do it “their” way, or else. In spite of numerous awards, in spite of outspoken support from the communities, in spite of excellence and demonstrated economic value even to the employers - it was always the same. So I left the ‘profession’ and mostly focus on playing music these days. The state of American journalism today is so pathetic words do not suffice. It is a primary reason this country has devolved into the state of ignorance and denial that we now experience.

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But money, it seems to me, is a tool. It is like technology. It can be used for good or for evil. And like other technologies, we start out creating it to help us, but then it turns out that this technology kind of turns on us, and we get hurt by it. It starts out as an instrument we use to help us with our lives, but then we inadvertently become its slave. Money is now almost like a prison that we have to struggle within. It is hurting the world via its influence in politics, its corrupting of science, its turning the world into a huge wasteland. Is there some way we could once again make money a useful instrument for the betterment of mankind, rather than something that we become a slave to? Could we somehow take back the reigns of control? Or is there perhaps another technology or tool that we could use in place of money?

Wow, I always wondered about that! So for some reason Common Dreams can just take other writers’ articles and publish it themselves, and not get in trouble as far as copyrights go? Because it seems to me they used to put some kind of disclaimer at the end of articles saying they were republishing with the permission of the original authors. But now I never see anything like that. And they don’t compensate the original authors? I just don’t get it.