CNN's Jake Tapper may be the most respect down-the-middle journalist in Washington right now. He has some thoughts on how Jeff bezos might save the failing Washington Post.
HH: I wonder what do you think Bezos is up to?
JT: I don’t know. It’s such a miniscule amount of money for him, less than 1% of what he’s worth, right? He’s worth like $20 billion dollars or something like that. So I don’t know. I mean, I think ultimately, the tech industry is, wants to have a platform, wants to have, they have lobbyists in Washington, D.C. There’s a lot of stuff that goes on here having to do with lobbying that we don’t know about, and tech certainly is part of that in terms of intellectual property, in terms of privacy issues, in terms of what they’re forced to cooperate with by the government, in terms of trade. It doesn’t hurt for somebody like that to be involved as a major media player in the city, even if he lives in the other Washington. But I don’t know. Was it Charles Foster Kane who said I would like to buy a newspaper? I’m not really sure what would drive him other than this is obviously a guy who’s made his fortune having to do with books, and that there seems to be, and he seems to invest in things that tickle his intellectual fancy. And maybe owning one of the most prestigious newspapers in the world, even if it’s not what it once was, is part of that.
HH: Now on that, we’re going to end up with a movie about Bezos that ends up with him saying Rosebudzos or something. But I think the by line is the brand in media now. And if you look at the Washington Post, and you used to be a print guy, and you run down, they’ve got some of the greatest reporters in the world. I saw that Dan Balz was on with you yesterday. He was on with me. Rajiv Chandrasekaran, Greg Sargent, Cillizza, Del Wilbur, Jay Mathews, you name it, and they’re bloggers are great, Ezra Klein and Greg Sargent and Jennifer Rubin. Does he revolutionize it? Or does he just let it go on? Or does he free those writers to do even more of what they do well?