Roger L. Simon

The LAT continues its swoom

The woes continue at the LATimes.  The AP tells us: LA Times to cut 250 positions, merge print and online departments, print 15 percent less pages.

LAT editor Russ Stanton informs us their problem is about length: “The number one reason that people cancel the L.A. Times is, they tell us, they don’t have enough time to read the paper that we give them every day,” Stanton said. “We’re going to be more picky about the stories we choose to write long and a lot more picky about the ones we write shorter.”

Okay, Mr. Pirandello, it is so if you think so.  On the other hand, some of us might think it has something to do with the content itself, which at the LAT veers consistently toward the most fuddy-duddy and predictable liberalism. Why even bother to read it?  The Wall Street Journal, as opposed to the LAT, seems to be doing just fine, thank you, and appears to be growing in length.  Word is out they may soon even be publishing a Book Review section.  Ever try reading the LAT Book Review these days?  It’s like the slush pile from the New York Review of Books circa 1977. [Hey, you ungrateful cur?  Didn’t the LAT Book Review make your career with its rave of The Big Fix back in 1972?-ed.  You would bring that up.]

What the LA Times needs is a serious over-haul, something absolutely non-traditional. It won’t happen.