NEW YORK -- The Federal Reserve's effort to rescue Bear Stearns from imminent collapse was a classic Wall Street Journal story, stripped across the top of the front page amid saturation coverage in the paper.
But just below that was a lengthy piece about Barack Obama's national finance chairman, the "petite billionaire" Penny Pritzker, and a dispatch on violent protests in Tibet.
In the four months since Rupert Murdoch took over the nation's leading financial newspaper, the front page has assumed a harder edge, particularly on politics, establishing the Journal as a high-profile player in the presidential campaign.
Murdoch is "clearly interested in challenging the journalistic establishment," says Robert Thomson, the former editor of Murdoch's Times of London, in his first public comments as Journal publisher. "I think American journalism has some soul-searching to do. American newspapers generally have kept up poorly with change. . . . If there's a presumption that what you might call New York Times journalism is the pinnacle of our profession, the profession is in some difficulty."