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    Repiglican Roast

    A spirited discussion of public policy and current issues

    Location: The mouth of being

    I'm furious about my squandered nation.

    Friday, October 12, 2007


    Howard Stringer, the president of CBS News, issued a memorandum to his organization yesterday that had, for many, an unpleasantly familiar ring. ''I did not take this job,'' Mr. Stringer said, ''to preside over the destruction of CBS News.''

    Mr. Stringer, responding to a report in The New York Times that the news division had been asked to examine its budget and find cuts of up to $50 million, said that ''the economic times we live in'' required new, more efficient ways of operating the CBS News organization.

    Word that the news division might have to drastically restructure itself, even to finding new ways of producing the ''CBS Evening News,'' brought a good deal of anxiety to an organization rocked repeatedly in the last 18 months by demands for drastic change.

    Laurence A. Tisch, the chief executive officer of CBS, has made it clear to his news division management that he wants dramatic reappraisal of the worldwide news-gathering operation, with the aim of drastically reducing the amount of money that CBS News spends each year. 'Efficiency and Effectiveness'

    Yesterday, Gene F. Jankowski, president of the CBS Broadcast Group, sent a wire to CBS affiliates stating that under Mr. Tisch, CBS News - as other divisions of the company - had ''been asked to review every aspect of their operation with the strictest possible regard for efficiency and effectiveness.''


    Mr. Tisch, an outsider to broadcasting who seized power just a year after becoming a CBS stockholder, was hailed as a hero last fall by CBS News employees, who believed he would restore CBS News to a protected and cherished place within the company. Mr. Tisch is a personal acquaintance of several prominent members of CBS News, including Don Hewitt, producer of ''60 Minutes''; Walter Cronkite, the former CBS anchor, and Mike Wallace, the prized CBS correspondent.


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