This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
ADVERTISEMENT
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
TheStreet Open House

Sometimes Dreams Fade Before the Dreamer

Editor's note: One day before we remember our veterans who have died to protect our freedom, we pay homage to a few business leaders who have recently passed away.

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- One point drummed into my head during journalism school was that you're not a "real journalist" unless you work for a daily paper, that a journalist is someone who works for someone who buys ink by the barrel.

As I started my career, it was drummed into my head that America's status as a technology power rested on our making the most-necessary parts, the semiconductor chips, here at home.

Both these ideas seem quaint today, so the fact that the men behind those ideas died within 14 months of one another somehow seems fitting.

Former Gannett (GCI - Get Report) Chairman Al Neuharth, who passed away last April, was an avatar of the first idea. I still have my first-day copy of his USA Today, acquired at one of several parties staged to celebrate the event, up in an attic somewhere.

Neuharth was the very picture of a great newspaperman, the kind of guy you'd expect would be played by Humphrey Bogart. He was a public man who reveled in his notoriety, a journalist who rose through the ranks to become a publisher, then the hyper-acquisitive head of Gannett, and finally the creator of "America's Newspaper," launched at a time when even I could see the days of print journalism were numbered.

Neuharth saw "professional journalists" as a noble breed, above the fray, unbiased umpires, both priests and spies, whose first loyalty was to readers. This made him a hero to young people like me.

Yet even as he called us to this work, he knew, because he was a publisher, that his first loyalty was to advertisers, just as we knew that defying readers' prejudices was a sure way to get fired. There's one set of rules for working journalists, who are "people who work for people," and another for those they work for, who are governed only by the ethics of business.


Neuharth sold an image: Be like me. But even as he sold it (he retired from Gannett 1989), the image was disappearing like a fog, or a dream. It deserves note here that Gannett has survived the decline of print, and now includes a number of interesting Web properties.

1 of 2

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Try it NOW
Only $9.95
Try it NOW
14-Days Free
Try it NOW

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Options Profits

Our options trading pros provide over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • Actionable options commentary and news
  • Real-time trading community
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
SYM TRADE IT LAST %CHG
GCI $36.64 0.00%
MU $26.68 0.00%
AAPL $126.37 0.00%
FB $83.20 0.00%
GOOG $552.03 0.00%

Markets

DOW 17,976.31 +263.65 1.49%
S&P 500 2,086.24 +25.22 1.22%
NASDAQ 4,947.4410 +56.2220 1.15%

Partners Compare Online Brokers

Free Reports

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs