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Ed Driscoll

Washington Post Suffers 85% Earnings Drop

May 3rd, 2013 - 8:05 pm

Now is the time when we juxtapose, Small Dead Animals-style:

It was undoubtedly impolitic for him to single out Las Vegas, rather than, say, Atlantic City, as a particularly wasteful destination. But as an objective matter, his broader point is correct: Americans need to tighten their belts — for quite a while, probably. During the boom, the ratio of household debt to household income reached 128 percent in 2008, according to the McKinsey Global Institute, far more than leading economic competitors such as Germany, Japan or China. This burden was concentrated most heavily on the middle class, McKinsey notes. And the proof that it was not sustainable is all around us, in the form of personal bankruptcy filings and foreclosures.

The more difficult question is whether this is a reality America should merely endure or actively embrace. For generations, we have built our economy on ever-increasing consumption, with the result (among others) that a metropolitan area of two million people has arisen over the last 40 years in the Nevada desert — based essentially on hedonism.

Far more important, perhaps, than his inconsistent observations about Vegas, is the fact that Obama seems to favor the latter option, embracing a less consumption-oriented economic future. In a speech marking the anniversary of his stimulus plan, he observed that “the jobs of the 21st century are in areas like clean energy and technology, advanced manufacturing, new infrastructure. That kind of economy requires us to consume less and produce more; to import less and export more.”

— “Obama’s hard truth: Americans must consume less,” the Washington Post, February 19, 2010.

Parker asked Zakaria if he had faith the American people could handle the fiscal discipline he advocated. Zakaria used the platform as an opportunity to attack Americans and refute the notion “the American people are wonderful.” His solution: Less consumption by the American people.

“No, I think the people are the big problem,” Zakaria said. “I mean, Americans — everybody wants to say the American people are so wonderful. You know, I think that when they come to recognize that they have to make sacrifices too that it’s not just wasteful — they need to have — they need to recognize that some of what’s going to happen here is fewer. They have to consume fewer things. They have to accept slightly higher taxes. And in the long run, you will have a much better economy.”

— “Fareed Zakaria to the American people: You are ‘the big problem,’” as quoted on December 15 2010 in the Daily Caller. Zakaria is a Time, CNN and Washington Post columnist.

The Washington Post Co. on Friday reported bad news for its newspaper division, with revenue totaling $127.3 million for the first quarter of this year — down four percent from 2012 — and an operating loss of $34.5 million.

Overall, the company posted a profit of just $4.7 million, an 85 percent drop in earnings from the net income of $31 million for the first quarter of last year.

In the newspaper division, daily and Sunday circulation at the Post dropped 7.2 and 7.7 percent, respectively, compared to 2012. Average daily circulation totaled 457,100 copies, with Sundays at 659,500. The report also noted that in January of this year, the Post increased the paper’s price for daily home delivery and daily and Sunday single copies. And print advertising revenue at the Post in the first quarter of 2013 dropped 8 percent to $48.6 million, down from $52.7 million in the first quarter of 2012.

“Washington Post suffers 85% earnings drop,” the Politico today.

Sounds like Americans are taking the Post’s advice; they’re reducing consumption — starting with their consumption of the Washington Post. Add that to the environmental benefits that the Post’s target audience, such as John Kerry and Claire McCaskill say accrues from less consumption, and it sounds like a real win for both the Post and its former readers.

But can the paper top these results in the next quarter? (Survey says: maybe, especially considering the fine product the Post generates these days.)

Update: Welcome readers clicking in from Small Dead Animals, Instapundit, and Ann Coulter.

Comments are closed.

All Comments   (13)
All Comments   (13)
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Now I call THIS Hope'N Change! On the bright side for the WaPo, maybe the Koch Bros will buy them.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
It will be enjoyable to watch the race to doom between NYT and WaPo. Any bets on who files for Ch 11 first.

By the way, WSJ is still in a growth mode contrary the screeds from Leftdom.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Yes it could. The NYT.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
It's a travesty of justice that they have lasted this long.

However I will add, WSJ is also on their way out, of course their daily paper is a quarter the size it was even ten years ago, but recently their editorial policy has gone nearly as "realist" as WaPo, spending half of every column criticizing anyone who names problems honestly, much less offers real solutions. "Compromise", huh? Yeah compromise with your 85% earnings drop and our sixteen trillion deficit.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Actually, I understand the newspaper has been a loss leader for a while -- the WaCompost group is kept afloat by its cash cow, the KAPLAN test-prep empire.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
The corporation has made more profits on the Kaplan divisions for a long time, but the newspaper operation needs to support itself. Actually most of the recent profits have come from the Cable One systems, and to a lesser extent their television stations, even Kaplan revenues are down.

In the newspaper business in the new century, revenues and readership just don't rebound. It's a dead cat bounce at best. We can look forward to Dana Milbank begging on the street. Be kind and step over his besotted form on the sidewalk, perhaps even give him a dollar towards his next half-caff half-fat soy latte venti with rose scented syrup and vegan dark-chocolate biscotti.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
We are wonderful people compared to whiny Fareed Z., born in Mumbai, where they had to be tapped on the shoulder by pasty faced colonialists and told "no, no" when it came to burning a wife alive when her husband died.

Hey, Fareed, go do a story about executing people in Malaysia for drug or gun possession in addition to beating them on the hind end with canes until their unconscious, including illegal aliens. Men like this dope treat us like what the Third World actually does and treats the Third World like they're noble innocents with a Bill of Rights in each hand.

Fire this moron and his cultural relativism. Like most hypocrites, he'll never live in the REALLY wonderful places like Mumbai. In Mumbai, people think waiting in line is a puzzle game. I've seen it.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Boycotts of the MSM has started nationwide. Watch and or read the MSM and if you detect propaganda and misinformation note who the advertisers are and don't buy their products. The MSM can not run without advertising dollars, write to the advertisers and tell them why you will not buy their products and send a .cc to the MSM propagandists. Just do it, its working. Don't like Chris Matthews distortions and lies, what advertisers is he associated with and don't buy, they have to have the advertising dollar, don't give it to them.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Actually, it doesn't have to be an actual boycott. The relevant question is: why would anybody buy the WaCompost to get DNC propaganda they can get elsewhere for free?
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Wouldn't that require me to watch the shows to find out who's advertising there? I have a huge list already of "don't support" businesses. It's getting so that you can't buy anywhere without supporting the liberal left.
Not disagreeing with you, just feeling hopeless.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
I'd suggest buycotting instead --- making a point of patronizing "the good guys" when you find out about them.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Couldn't have happened to a more deserving newspaper.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
My response exactly.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
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