1-5: The Cost of News

[I write about politics because of the direct link I see between the words and actions of politicians and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. America’s political class manipulates our military as though they were pawns in a global game of chess. To them, PTSD is merely an unfortunate cost of war.]

[I consult and consider many sources in search of appropriate subject matter for this blog. Often I find material that is best left (mostly) untouched by me, e.g., today’s piece from blogger RetIII.]

Blogger RetIII opens with the headline sentence,

The root cause of TV journalism’s problem is not hard to understand.


Even the casual news consumer will recognize most, if not all, of the names bulleted below. Their salaries are impressive. Are they worth the money they are paid?

  • Chris Wallace — $1 million
  • Scott Pelley – $5 Million.
  • Chris Mathews — $5 million
  • Megyn Kelly – $6 Million (and increasing soon)
  • Rachel Maddow – $7 Million.
  • Shepard Smith – $7-$8 Million.
  • Anderson Cooper – $11 Million.
  • Diane Sawyer – $12 Million.
  • George Stephanopoulos — $15 million
  • Bill O’Reilly – $20 Million.
  • Matt Lauer – $25 Million.

RetIII notes: “We have hit a point where the prominent journalists are part of the story themselves.” Unfortunately, journalists in general are poorly paid (with relation to the hours they work) and print journalism in the form of daily newspapers is becoming a lost art. In checking backgrounds of each of these familiar faces, I’m pretty sure—in my fantasy world as TV news producer—I would find a spot for them on my team. Just not sure I would pay their rates.

Chris Wallace

Although being the son of hard-hitting reporter Mike Wallace probably didn’t hurt, Wallace began his news career at the Boston Globe.

Scott Pelley

Pelley, the only non-college grad of the group, began as a copyboy at a local newspaper then worked his way up the ladder via a series of positions at local TV stations in Texas.

Chris Mathews

After joining the Peace Corps rather than risk being drafted during the Vietnam War Era, Matthews landed a position on the Capitol Hill Police Force. He wrote speeches for Jimmy Carter, was an aide to Tip O’Neill, and wrote a political column for the San Francisco Chronicle.

Megyn Kelly

Kelly began her professional life as a lawyer. A prime time figure at Fox News, Kelly will soon transfer to another high profile position at NBC News.

Rachel Maddow

Maddow graduated from Stanford University before moving on to Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar. There she earned a Ph.D. in political science.

Shepard Smith

Smith earned his degree in journalism at the University of Mississippi.

Anderson Cooper

The son of Gloria Vanderbilt, Cooper earned his degree in political science at Yale.

Diane Sawyer

Having earned her BA in English from Wellesley College, Sawyer went on to work as a staffer for President Richard Nixon.

George Stephanopoulos

In addition to his degree in political science from Columbia, interesting fact: Stephanopoulos has a masters degree in theology from Oxford.

Bill O’Reilly

O’Reilly worked at a number of local TV stations around the country before attaining his masters in broadcast journalism at Boston University.

Matt Lauer

Lauer graduated from Ohio University with a degree in communication.

They sure make a bundle of money, but it is hard to argue that they didn’t prepare for their chosen career path.


The illustration at the blog’s top is the Combat Infantryman’s Badge. The blogger is a Vietnam Veteran, 1966-67. He is an author and past state chaplain for a major veterans organization. He welcomes comments on posts and encourages readers to subscribe to PTSDOutreach.com; two points: 1) it is free, 2) posts appear directly in your e-mail in-box.

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