We are all familiar with the unsettling demise of some and downsizing of many newspapers in this country. A great industry appears to many to be in its death throes. And, of course, I am an editor at one, Los Angeles' daily for the legal community. The Los Angeles Times, however, has always been special to me. And for most of my years, it has been a daily ritual to read the newspaper of record on the West Coast -- and, since the early 1970s, one of the four or five greatest newspapers in the country. No more, however. Ever since the Chandler family sold its ownership of the Times to the Chicago Tribune at the end of the twentieth century, every change made at the paper has only resulted in a product that is not as good as before. For me, it all started with the sacking of the Times's most popular columnist, Robert Scheer. What I had heard was that the Tribune's publisher simply did not like Scheer's work (which was -- and is -- very much left of center). Add to that the scandal that erupted around the Staples Center entertainment complex in downtown, in which top editors at the Times basically gave in and did a promotion of the Staples Center in what was, to me, a horrifying Sunday edition, and things did not look so hot. Over the years, the Tribune only made matters worse. Typestyle formats were changed and resulted in what looked like a knock off of the New York Times. The "Los Angeles" section (or Section B) was changed in 2001 to the "California" section, to "broaden" its appeal, and entire offices located outside the Spring Street complex, along with those editions of the Times were shuttered altogether. Then Sam Zell purchased the Times from the Tribune and brought to the newspaper his utter disregard for news per se and instituted a strictly bottom-line orientation to the paper. As a result, the editorial staff has been halved. And that "California" section? Dropped completely. All the while, still more changes have been done to the paper's layout, its logo, and its coverage. (Don't get me started on the paper having dropped entirely its separate Sunday book review supplement.) This morning, another disturbing change. One of my favorite remaining columnists, Rosa Brooks, turned in her final column. She is taking a job in the current administration, only too ready to leave what she believes is a dying industry. As for me, I am beginning to wonder why I even still purchase the Los Angeles Times. I mean, look at the cover of this morning's edition, with the bottom of the front page and part of the left side dominated by advertising. It didn't used to be this way. And I am thinking of giving up on this once-proud institution. So sad. To the residents of the increasing number of towns and cities who are witnessing the shuttering of newspapers and/or the cessation of home deliveries or the conversion to "online editions" only, I feel for you and I know what it is like.