Despite all the "new media" alternatives, TV is still Big Business in the U.S., and owning a local TV station or a cable-TV system in a big city is still a very profitable enterprise.
And that, in a nutshell, is the carrot that the Bush administration has quite effectively dangled in front of big newspapers for almost the entirety of their two terms in power: The prospect that the FCC will remove restrictions that have been in place for years prohibiting a newspaper from owning a TV station or cable system in the same market.
So, in these final months of the Bush years, it should come as no surprise to anyone that the FCC is now finally moving on this long-teased deregulatory path -- despite opposition by a large majority of U.S. citizens. (See Americans oppose media market concentration-survey.)
Combined with allowing massive media mergers to take place under its watch, the Bush administration has done an excellent job at keeping the owners of TV signal distribution -- and would-be owners -- salivating.