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Such is the plight of the dying magazine business: Newsweek paid what's rumored to be a high-six-figures ransom not to keep Steven Levy, its star tech writer, but to unburden itself of him just so he could join Wired. The Washington Post-owned weekly is offering editorial staff generous buyouts, up to two years' salaries, to reduce its headcount. Levy smartly leapt at the offer, knowing he could easily get a job elsewhere. Something seems backwards in this labor market: Don't acquirers normally pay a premium for control?