1. Robert McChesney and John Nichols wrote The Death and Life of American Journalism, a new book whose central argument is that newspapers are going to need government subsidies to stay afloat.
The economics student in me is reflexively dismissive of the idea—the journalism field is changing, and if there’s demand for objective, hard-news reporting, there’s going to be a supply of it, with or without newspapers.
But McChesney and Nichols, who are reading from their book at Town Hall tonight, are afraid that’s not happening. Of course I like their rap on how the Fourth Estate is critical to the functioning of American democracy. I just think using government funds to sustain a clearly dying medium—namely, newspapers—is probably a waste of money. Not to mention that the idea of government involvement in newspapers seems a little contrary to the writers’ argument that media needs to be independent from powerful entities for it to be appropriately critical.
7:30 pm, at Town Hall, Eighth and Seneca. $5.
On Tomorrow's Calendar
1. Two Seattle Public Utilities committees are meeting tomorrow night—the Water System Advisory Committee and the Solid Waste Advisory Committee, both of which consist of a panel of concerned citizens and two representatives from SPU.
The Water System meeting is at 4 pm, and the Solid Waste meeting is at 5, both tomorrow evening. In Room 4096, at Seattle Municipal Tower.
2. Philanthropy has never been easier for the lazy. You can donate $10 to the Red Cross by texting "Haiti" to the number 90999. It gets even easier than that. If you went to Full Tilt ice cream on Sunday, for example, all of the money you spent went directly to Haitian relief efforts. Half the concerts I came across while putting together the calendar today were fundraisers for Haiti.
The latest, and relatively awesomest, is tomorrow night's DJ-off at the Re-Bar, which features DJ Riz Rollins, of KEXP fame, and a whole cast of DJs. The cover is split evenly between the Red Cross and Yele Haiti. An evening of drinking and listening to people spin records. That's 21st Century philanthropy, I guess.
Tomorrow night, 8 pm, at Re-Bar. $8 cover ($5 with a non-perishable food donation).
3. Robert Fishman is a nationally-recognized urban planning and architecture expert. He teaches at the University of Michigan, and he's in town to talk about urban renewal and the place of nature in cities. If that sounds boring, consider that much of Fishman's lecture is billed as a mash-up of thoughts on A) Jane Jacobs, who led the sane in opposing Robert Moses' highwayification of New York City (although she was too late to stop this monstrous blight), B) Jacobs is the author of a classic, great-sounding book I've never read called The Death and Life of Great American Cities, and C) Rachel Carson, who's generally credited with starting the environmentalist movement in the 50s, and whose Silent Spring led to the national ban on DDT.
Tomorrow evening at 6:30 pm, at the UW's Kane Hall. Free.
4. The Delridge District Council—which consists of neighborhood groups and non-profits from around Southeast West Seattle, is meeting tomorrow night. The meeting tomorrow is mostly focused on this year's city-funded of neighborhood projects, a list of street and park improvements.
At Youngstown Cultural Arts Center, 4408 Delridge Way SW. At 7 pm.