"The rise of the Internet, as everyone knows, has been hell on traditional media outlets -- especially newspapers and magazines, which have seen their circulation, advertising, and profits plummet as millions of readers have gone digital. Thousands of journalists have lost their jobs, national and foreign bureaus have been shut, news coverage has dwindled, and the long-range forecast is for more of the same. To stop the bleeding and keep American journalism viable, some are suggesting a government lifeline in the form of enhanced public funding.
It's not a popular idea. In a recent Rasmussen poll, large majorities rejected the idea of taxing cell phone service, consumer electronics, or Internet news sites in order to rescue the press. Moreover, "58 percent of Americans are confident that online and other news sources will make up the difference if many newspapers go out of business.""