"Good" news: a massive real estate developer and a sugar magnate may buy the Miami Herald. Hey, then let's sell the Washington Post to the CIA! This is a CHILLING VISION of newspapers' future.
We recently put 2-1 odds against the long-term survival of the Herald, partly because the local economy is so real-estate driven that you couldn't possibly pick a worse time to be selling the paper (McClatchy has to, because it's broke). But! We didn't consider the possibility that the most reviled businesses in the state would team up to turn a major metro paper into their own propaganda sheet!
It all makes perfect sense, though. Ron Burkle backed Radar partly so he'd have a friendly gossip outlet. Same with Jared Kushner buying the Observer, which is one of NYC's leading real estate news outlets—Kushner's own industry. Likewise, when the billionaires Eli Broad and David Geffen were each talking about buying the LA Times last year, it was clear that part of the result would be friendlier coverage for, at least, their friends.
But those are all relatively subtle. This Miami thing is brazen. There's no reason—none!—that a freaking sugar industry exec would have an interest in buying a dying newspaper, except to make sure they get some friendlier coverage for their ongoing rape of Florida's environment.
"Trump, Rumsfeld Buy NYT In '09." Watch for it! [via Romenesko]