Publisher’s Letter: Value vs Profit!

BY BLAINE HOWERTON

With the fast pace of modern life we often tend to get caught up in immediate and ephemeral results. It’s often hard to measure what really matters in helping to craft a story bigger than our own.

And it might be said that we need to change what we reward. If you doubt that, have you ever considered that if a dedicated teacher can assist a special needs child to work through their challenges and lead a productive life how much that contributes to society? A life that can be well lived that subtly but surely impacts us all — it’s often hard-to-impossible to see these things that really matter and to recognize the people in our culture who are quietly making a huge contribution.

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It can be argued that 2019 is not our peak civilization — there’s so much more we can do.

But what needs doing? And of that what leads most to the creation of lasting value?

These are questions I ask myself on a regular basis and why in May 2017 when this newspaper was shutting down after serving its readers for over two decades that I stepped in to do the hard work of saving it — not because it would be immediately profitable but because it was of value and because it was important not to let yet another local newspaper go under and thereby expand the “news desert” that now exists in so many areas of this country.

In a relatively short time, our culture has become quite insular where people who live right next door to each other may not know each other’s names.

This began with the advent of the automobile where from the late 1800’s through the early twentieth century people were so fascinated by these insular forms of transportation that they turned away enmasse from public transportation and thus a natural way to meet new people on a regular basis — their fellow travelers and commuters.

Imagine if you could commute to Denver by train and relax along the way, reading the paper or planning your day rather than battling with ever-increasing traffic — and once you were there you didn’t have to worry about and/or pay for parking. That once existed but we weren’t paying attention and we let train travel die off.

Contrast this to Europe where people have transportation options we don’t enjoy because they werepaying attention and maintained their train service, made it easy for bikers, which admirably, we are now doing and even made being a pedestrian safer than it is in many parts of the United States — locally, we are making progress on that as well.

As a nation we have morphed into a culture that is driven by self-interest and a fast buck. We may not stop to think of whether our current choices will make a difference for future generations.

Here at the newspaper, we work hard to recognize people, nonprofits, local business owners, and government agencies that are working hard to shepherd their responsibilities not just to benefit their current-day constituencies but the generations who will come after us — not because it’s profitable but because it’s of great and lasting value.

We’d love to hear from you, our readers, as to why you believe our hard work on your behalf matters. In what way do you believe we serve the needs of the Northern Colorado communities we cover? And how can we do better? Your answers help guide us in our pursuit of creating more lasting value and of uncovering what truly matters!

Please send Letters to the Publisher to: ahunter@northfortynews.com

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Blaine Howerton