A few days after the Tribune's Baltimore Sun said it would close its Beijing and London bureaus, the Los Angeles Times and its newspaper cousin the Chicago Tribune inadvertently made it a lot easier for the bean counters at headquarters to press their case for even more belt tightening in the foreign budget. In Sunday's Times, T. Christian Miller went to Nepal to report on the dozen immigrants who came down out of the mountains to take work in Iraq, only to be slaughtered in a ditch. Good story, and worth doing even with all the expensive travel. The unfortunate part is on Sunday the Chicago Tribune also began its own series recreating the journey to Iraq of the twelve Nepalese, sending a Tribune reporter and photographer to the same area of Nepal. I'm all for this kind of enterprise reporting, but I suspect that Dean Baquet at the Times and Ann Marie Lipinski at the Tribune will hear about this episode more than once as they argue against the inevitable cuts coming down from Chicago's axe-wielders.
* Monday better: Tribune's checkbook-watching execs will be happy that Monday's Times covers the Astros-Braves playoff with a story picked up from Newsday. On the other hand, the Times had two columnists and at least two reporters in New York for the Angels-Yankees series.