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Power Of The Press

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We Uke the following extracta from thevery able address delivered by Whitelaw Keid, editor-in-chief oí the New York Tribuut, before the Ohio State Press Associatkm, il Cineinnati, June lü: Is the power oi' the presa declinihg? Every little while snme discontented clergyman or extinct polltlcian declares t Is. (uite recently they have given ns very soleinu discourses about ft. Xewspapers are more read, they admit, bat lesa lieeded. With the air of discoverers they teil us of the great things done by the journals of the past generation, and triumphantly exclaiin, "But whó minds now what a newspaper says ?" Thero were giants in tliose days ; only pigniies walk the eartli to-day. In the earlier times the great newspaper stood i'or a great torce; now it only stands for a great noise. It has become selfish, it want's to make money, it is on a commercial basis now, itactually supports itself - how cansueli a iress wield the old influence? I wisli to speak with due respect; luit really this soit of talk- and we hearagood deal of it, from unsuccessful quarters- seem to me the twadüle of mushy sentirnentalists. Far wiser and manlier was the tone taken bv Macaulay, in opening liis great histovy:- "Those who compare the age on which their lot has fallen witli a golden age wliich existsonly in their iinagination, may talk of degeneracy and decay ; but no man who is correctly Informed as to the past, will lic disposed to take a moróse or desponding view of the present." It is easy to marshal the great naines of the past, and idle to try to match tliern (tam amoog tYnr Milwg, We count no rnan great, anyway, till he is dead. lint gieat men do not necessanly make the greatest newspapers. As well niight you challenge the Londou Times, in the zenith of it s influence. say 1855, t o prove itself ibe equal of the oM Fublic Advertiser, of the century betere, aud crash it with the taant, "Where liitve u a man the equal of Juni usP" As well twit our newspapers i f the staboard to-dav with their inferiority to the old Pennsylvania Qazette, because among thena all is to lomid no Benjamin Franklin. Most true it is that the foremost editorial writerof our time lias had and is to have nu soccessor. Ilorace Greeley stood alone, without a peer and without a rival not perhaps the ideal editor, hut, fairly judged, the ablest rnaster of controversia! English and the most successful popular educator the journalism of the English-sieaking world has jet developed. I remember how through half his career the men he had engaged wereahvas say ing his power had declined. It is not true that the abflity of the pressis declining. The papers of the country are better ritten now than they.eyer were before. They are better edited. Their average courtesy ïa greater: iheir average morality is purer ; their average tendeney higher. They better hit the wants of great, inisi-ellaneoiis communities, and so they have more reader? in proportlon to population. Their power maj be more diff used ; but it is unmistakably greater. Tliere has lieen no more iemarkable pheiiomenon in the liistory of the profession than the rapid growthofthe country press, and its increase in ability, in resources, in self-respect and in influenee. Tliere j are half a dozen towns in the interior of Xew York which now have better newspapers, with larger income and more influenee, than those of the meii.']'T.lo titmmiS-t Ullld UI pufllllIB rveu a (juarter of a century aso. ïhere is more good, young blood teiuling to this than to any of the other profesaions. There is more movement in it than in bar, or ]ulpit, or whate ver other so-called learned professions you viü;--more growth, a larger opportunity, a greater future, we are getting the best. These young men will leave u? far behind, They will aehieve a usefulness and command a power to which wecannot aspire, very erude and narrow will seem our worthiest wórk to the able editors of a quarter or a half century henee - very splendid will be the structure they erect. We shall not rear the columns or carve the capitals for that stately temple, Let us at least aspire, with honest j purpose and on a wise plan, to" lay ■ aright its foundations. The princesa Beatrice of England, the youngest child of Queen Victoria will not be permitted to marry the man of her choice, as her sister JLouise of Lome did. There has been more wire ]ulling and intrigue about poor Beatrice's fate than there has been over the whole of tlie remainder of the Royal family. Eugenie and the late Empress Xapoleon began it. The Queen herself has been to Italy about it, the Empress of Austria has been to England about it, and now the Empress of Germany is taking tea with Victoria and matchmakmg in all p robabil i ty.


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Michigan Argus