So the media meltdown continues as the Tribune chain has filed for bankruptcy. What this doesn't have in common with other businesses in crisis: No one is asking for more than the usual handout, I mean bailout. What it does have in common: Blame the workers, hurt the workers, screw the workers.
The rumor I got is that those who graciously took early retirement are having their payments and maybe health benefits held up since the whole deal's now hit the courts. Who do these workers and people trying to collect their pensions think they are? Everyone knows when a business fails, it's the fault of the ones out there doing the work. The ones flying around and collecting millions in salaries and commissioning ice sculptures are just trying, trying as hard as they can, but those workers keep bringing it all down. They ask for so much. They live like kings.
So now we'll be stuck with the Post, and that's floating around on a deck chair among the icebergs too. Gotta love a paper you pick up in the hangover haze and it tells you you're a member of the the dumbest generation of the past 200 years. OK, maybe dancing with that gangster-looking guy WAS dumb, but give me a break. The Outlook piece uses the Generation Jones tag on us--that undernourished slice of a generation born between the boomers and GenX--and claims we had the worst test scores, the worst education, etc. The Millennialists, he claims, are the really smart ones.
That Generation Jones tag's got trendy Gladwell-wannabe all over it, but I kind of like it anyway, with its shucks-shuffle rhythm and undertone of illicit, unrelieved longing.
We Jonesers were alternately neglected and demonized as children? Check. We were subject to weird educational experiments (at the hands of boomers, I might add) and classrooms depleted by inflation and municipal failure? Check. We were so terrified by our free-lovin', boozin', Ice Stormin' parents that we started dressing preppy and voted for Reagan? Ah, here's where we splinter. A faction of us became obsessive autodidact punks instead.
And we're so dumb? Here's a little test: Generation Jones gave us Henry Rollins. The Millennialists claim Britney Spears. Your witness.
Speaking of newspaper cutbacks, Die, Sunday Source, Die, with your hilarious stabs at fashion and absurd "product testing" crew who write like 7th-graders ("I don't usually use anything but Ivory soap, but this body lotion smelled kind of good, like Lemon Pledge? but it felt all goopy? and made me cold when I put it on, so I threw it away. But if you like body lotion maybe you might like it. It costs $75.")
Well, I won't have it to kick around anymore. The Post claims the staff will be sucked into the Style section. Better this than subject us to more pages full of interns trying to pretend they care about heels and mascara ("I'm just obsessed with mascara--I have a dozen different kinds," one lied recently) when we know all you little DC vixens really want to talk about is the dangers of protectionist trade policy to the international economy.
Oh, and Barack Obama? Jones.
Photo: Henry, a pub job.