People: Dan in a huff over TV puffs - World - News - The Independent

People: Dan in a huff over TV puffs

THE VETERAN American newscaster Dan Rather has lambasted his profession for what he calls 'the Hollywoodisation of news', in which foreign reports and in-depth analysis are replaced by mayhem, gossip and puff.

This trivialisation of a noble profession was prompted by paranoid fear in television newsrooms of sliding ratings, he said, and he urged news editors to heed their news instinct and stop letting market researchers dictate decisions.

'We pay them to fool us,' he told a convention of news broadcasters. But he is confident the rot can be stopped. 'What has happened to us doesn't have to continue,' he said. 'Just a few good men and women can make a decisive difference.'

A man who felt the full blast of the Hollywoodisation of news, the disgraced former Brazilian president Fernando Collor de Mello, is nostalgic for the good old days of mayhem, gossip and puff. Alone, unemployed and ignored by the press, Mr Collor, who was impeached a year ago for corruption, is dreaming of a political comeback.

'I feel at peace with Brazil. I am waiting for the storm to pass and proving my innocence,' he said in a rare radio interview.

He whiles away his time in the library of his mansion, the Casa da Dinda, living modestly, he claims, though he and his wife, Rosane, are attended by more than 20 servants. What's more, he is feeling the pinch financially.

'I have only dollars 1.5m ( pounds 1m) left from the dollars 5m I borrowed in Uruguay, and I am going through it,' he confessed.

Someone who has come back to the political scene after involuntary absence is the Chinese dissident Wei Jingsheng. Recently freed from 14 years' imprisonment, he has bounced right back into the cause of championing Chinese democracy.

'All along I never changed,' he says. He is still addicted to tea and cigarettes, and dismisses as 'nonsense' the authorities' claim that economic development must come before democratic reform.

Democracy is the pillar of society, he argues. 'Without a tree-trunk, how can you still have leaves flourishing at the top? It's impossible.'

Life and Style
tech
Arts and Entertainment
Robin Thicke's video for 'Blurred Lines' has been criticised for condoning rape
music
News
Paper trail: the wedding photograph found in the rubble after 9/11 – it took Elizabeth Keefe 13 years to find the people in it
newsWho are the people in this photo? It took Elizabeth Stringer Keefe 13 years to find out
Arts and Entertainment
Evil eye: Douglas Adams in 'mad genius' pose
booksNew biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Sport
FootballFull debuts don't come much more stylish than those on show here
Arts and Entertainment
Fringe show: 'Cilla', with Sheridan Smith in the title role and Aneurin Barnard as her future husband Bobby Willis
tvEllen E Jones on ITV's 'Cilla'
News
i100
Sport
Tim Wiese
sport
Life and Style
Kim Kardashian drawn backlash over her sexy swimsuit selfie, called 'disgusting' and 'nasty'
fashionCritics say magazine only pays attention to fashion trends among rich, white women
Arts and Entertainment
TVShows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Arts and Entertainment
Hit the roof: hot-tub cinema east London
architectureFrom pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
Travel
travel
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Project Manager (retail, upgrades, rollouts)

£40000 - £45000 Per Annum + benefits: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Project...

Project Manager (upgrades, rollouts, migrations)

£350 - £425 Per Day: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Project Manager - 3 mont...

Science teachers needed in Cromer

£21000 - £35000 per annum: Randstad Education Cambridge: Science teachers requ...

IT Administrator - Graduate

£18000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: ***EXCELLENT OPPORTUNITY FO...

Day In a Page

Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

The Imitation Game, film review
England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week