Her are two current examples why the Fourth Estate matters -- why it still serves the public interest.
Locally, in my home town of Milwaukee, readers were shocked and angry to learn how their tax dollars are squandered (again) by a $350 million state child care program that is routinely plundered by a number of providers, including one -- who as a result of Journal Sentinel investigations -- turned herself in to state authorities.
Fine reporting indeed, by Ms. Raquel Rutledge and others at the Journal Sentinel. Read more about the scams they uncovered at www.jsonline.com/cashinginonkids
Ninety miles south of me, another series by the Chicago Tribune exposes corrupt admission practices at the University of Illinois, as well as other cheats and cronyism throughout the Land of Lincoln. Here's the spot to read, "State of Corruption".
Have you ever wondered how we'd learn about these things if old fashioned, gumshoe reporting didn't occur?