The New York Times is the last real newspaper standing. That said, it's on shaky legs. Yeah, yeah, I know it's ripped for being ultra-liberal and that liberalism comes out on the editorial page, though a couple of righties have regular columns, as well. And the paper has had its share of embarrassing bogus stories from bogus reporters over the years.
But day in, day out, there is not another newspaper that actually covers national and international news like NYT. Not convinced? Compare the websites for yourselves:
New York Times - so newsy, it looks absolutely dull, though right now it's featuring a photo of Axl Rose - must be the Murdoch influence; give it ten minutes and the photo will change to starving children or the Iraqi war; lives up to its "Gray Lady" reputation
Los Angeles Times - well, showbiz is news in Los Angeles, so I guess we can forgive them for parsing out only a couple of key spots for news that affects the rest of the world
Washington Post - #2 on the news-scale, but it still along way from the news-heft of NYT
The Times/London - all Madonna and "Strictly Come Dancing," all the time (well, that's what you get with Murdoch at the helm)
The Guardian UK - showin' the love for Madonna and Michael Jackson right on the front
The Telegraph UK - fairly newsy at the moment, though it replaced its Madonna story with an old picture of the Queen in bell-bottoms (that's pretty newsworthy, I think)
When I taught Advanced Placement Government and Politics, I had the NYT delivered to the classroom. My students were overwhelmingly conservative and were very wary of the paper until they started using it. Even though many of them heartily disagreed with everything on the editorial page, they became dependent on all the news sections. I had a student come back to see me after he'd graduated to tell me that the best thing I ever taught him was to read the New York Times (and he was one of my most conservative students).
But news reporting is only one reason I'm thankful for NYT. I mean, the crossword puzzle alone is worthy of thankfulness. And the Sunday Magazine. And the NYT Best Seller list. The paper features a great Science section on Tuesdays. The Arts, Fashion, Politics - all superior to any other newspaper. It is one gorgeous hunk o' newspaper, even with its "Gray Lady" style. So I am thankful for "all the news that's fit to print," because obviously the whole Madonna-Guy, Britney, Paris, Come Dancing stuff isn't (fit to print), but a damn fine crossword is.
Thanks for the news, you buncha' rascals.