The Dallas Morning Blues

It’s been nothing but bad news lately for Belo, the media conglomerate that owns the state’s leading newspaper. But to understand how Texas’s oldest company can survive in the brave new world, you have to read between the lines.

THE FOLLOWING TABLOID-STYLE HEADLINE would never run in the conservative, sober-sided Dallas Morning News: “Scandal Shocks Family Empire!” Nor would this shamelessly embellished subhead: “Company Reels From Onslaught of Bad News.” Both, however, could easily describe, in a sensationalized and distinctly un— Morning News sort of way, the current plight of Belo Corp., the company that owns the Dallas newspaper.

In August, Belo chairman Robert Decherd indeed shocked his family’s empire when he announced that the

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