Congressional Hearing on Newspaper Financial Woes Set for Thursday

Congressional hearing on newspapers set for ThursdayEditor & Publisher
The hearing will "examine contraction in the newspaper industry, the economic impact of the changing media landscape, as well as the future of the industry at large," says an announcement. Pew Research Center’s Tom Rosenstiel will be one of the witnesses. 
[Poynter Romenesko]

From the E&P article: 

"The witnesses will review alternative funding options for newspapers in our new and ever-changing electronic age. Since the ratification of the Bill of Rights, the federal government has acknowledged that the press is an institution which is afforded special protections by name. In this spirit, I think that the government can help foster solutions for this industry in ways which protect the independence of newspapers and enables their objective reporting to thrive in a new economic and media climate."

All of which prompts the question: how involved can government truly be in its watchdog’s welfare without harming the watchdog’s objective watchfulness?