Weekend News Cafe

Weekends are not high traffic days for most news websites and Investigative Post did not update our first two weekends. But we’re going to experiment with something we call “Weekend News Cafe,” in which we’ll post interesting reads we’ve come across over the past week and a video or two that might prove of interest. This will be a work in progress, so let us know what you think in the comments section below or via our contact form.

Just how much doo-doo is the newspaper industry in?

The answer is “deep.”

Consider two reports out this week. The “Economic Report of the President” tracks employment growth and shrinkage in major industries. The fastest growing? Renewable energy, up 49 percent, followed by online publishing (24%) and e-learning (16%). Hmmm, see a trend there?

The biggest loser. Yeah, you guessed it, newspapers, down 29 percent.

Another report put the economic collapse in stark terms. Newspapers are losing $7 in print advertising revenue for every $1 they are gaining in online advertising revenue. The reasons are many, including, one newspaper executive said, “inertia.”

Now we could insert a music video here — say “Eve of Destruction” — but we’ll resist the temptation.

Ending corporate welfare as we know it.

The American Prospect reports that good-government types are pushing back against economic development subsidies that fail to deliver.

Most states and cities will do almost anything to induce companies to set up shop within their borders—or to keep them there. It seems no tax incentive is too plush, no subsidy too bountiful. Businesses, in turn, will make grand claims about the jobs and other benefits they bring to a community.

But what happens if they renege on the deal and pack up or simply don’t live up to their promises? Too often, the answer has been “nothing.” States and municipalities are left scrambling to explain why they spent the taxpayers’ money and got nothing in return.

Fortunately, this is starting to change. Good-governance groups are putting forth a simple message for businesses that do not deliver on their promises: We want our money back.

The full story is here.

In case you missed it

Our most read story of the week was the Q&A with Larry Quinn in which he proposed restoration of the Central Terminal in part to house some of the vast collection of the Albright Knox Art gallery that is stashed away in storage.

We like this guy’s work.

Glenn Greenwald writes for Salon. To say the man has no sacred cows is an understatement. You’re not going to like his work is you’re a right winger. Obama fans won’t like what they read, either.

Greenwald writes a lot about folly and hypocrisy, especially as it relates to the so-called war on Terror and national politics. Such as this piece on the treatment of Bradley Manning,  the poor job the American media is doing (again) in the latest run up to war, and the NYPD’s spying on American Muslims.

Greenwald is nothing if not thought provoking.

We love these guys’ work.

Ladies and gentlemen, we bring you Muddy Waters and Sonny Boy Williamson II, circa 1963.

Enjoy your weekend. We’re back at it Monday.