SWAN SONG OF AN INCOMPETENT MONOPOLIST
Walter Cronkite, formerly the most trusted man in America, at age 87 has formally closed his career as a journalist.
Good riddance to bad rubbish.
Cronkite prospered as the genial face of conformist, corporate, liberalism in a day when three networks and an FCC imposed " fairness doctrine " shut out dissenting opinions, particularly conservative ones, from the airwaves. On the most important story of his career, the Tet Offensive
, he had the analysis completely wrong and substituted his own anti-war opinion for the facts on the ground, which were that the Viet Cong had been destroyed as an effective fighting force. Walter Cronkite's report did not singlehandedly finish off America's will to prosecute the war but it was, in my view, the greatest propaganda coup of the war for the North Vietnamese. It devastated the morale of the home front, particularly that of the liberal elite Cronkite himself represented.
After his forced retirement as an anchorman, Cronkite has become well-known as a curmudgeon, attacking the decline in broadcast standards, the proliferation of consumer choices in television news, the airing of conservative opinions before national audiences which never would have been permitted in his day, the internet and the bad language of Howard Stern. In truth, if Cronkite was working today as a young journalist in a hypercompetitive market he'd be damned lucky to even have a slot on CNN or National Public Radio.
Like many monopolists lamenting the advent of a free market he thinks having pranced in an artificially small arena made him a throroughbred.