Ronald Reagan used to tell the story of a young boy, whistling and grinning as he shoveled out a stable full of manure. Asked why was he so happy doing such a stinky, thankless job, the boy replied, “There’s got to be a pony in here somewhere.”
It’s tough to keep your attitude sunny when everything around you is gloomy. But veteran network producer Tom Bettag believes there’s good news for some journalists in today’s awful economic climate:
Bettag says being fired in 1986 by CBS News, where he was executive producer of the Evening News with Dan Rather, is the best thing that ever happened to him. He went on to produce Nightline for ABC News for 14 years, and then moved with anchor Ted Koppel to Discovery where they produced a series of documentaries. Now that Koppel and Discovery have parted ways, Bettag is focused on an effort to promote news literacy.