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Thursday, October 06, 2005

Uncle Walter Sees It Now

Little did I know that making mention of Walter Cronkite yesterday was so timely. Uncle Walter, 88, made the news this week with remarks about Americans (too dumb) and the blogosphere (scary) at the Annenberg School of Communication where he was handing out the eponymous Walter Cronkite Award for Excellence in Television Political Journalism.

The Los Angeles Times reported that the former CBS News anchor had this to say about the state of the polity:
"We [as a nation] are not educated well enough to perform the necessary act of intelligently selecting our leaders."
Further, Cronkite told the interviewer
'he fears the blogosphere, still in its "infancy," could threaten the standing of mainstream media as a news source for consumers already confused by cable's "opinion journalism." It is the function of the educational system, he believes, to train people to understand the difference.'
He also told the interviewer that his
"fellow journalists — primarily broadcast — [should]pressure "our employers, those who are more concerned with profits than they are with performance," to replace the current roundups of celebrity profiles and personal health and finance pieces with "the news of the day."
Well, they can't get the gate closed on that darned celebrity news soon enough for Walter. John Widdicombe of the New York Daily News and Liz Smith of Variety report that Uncle Walter has been keeping company with 60-something opera singer Joanna Simon, the sister of Carly Simon. Smith went on to report the two plan to marry.

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