First, conservatives need to read more local and state news and less national news. The outrage rags are popular, but they do little beyond ginning up anger and funneling cash to political actors. Local journalists need support. Conservatives also need to teach their children to value local news, engage with local issues, and support the paper by writing letters to the editor. Model good citizenship for the next generation.
Second, conservative donors need to take Tucker Carlson’s call to arms seriously. Direct some funds toward training young conservative journalists interested in reporting, not commentary. It doesn’t matter where, exactly — right-leaning newspapers, college journalism programs, state think tanks that give interns valuable experience — the important thing is ensuring that young journalists develop interviewing skills, learn how to cultivate sources, file public-records requests, and report on government meetings. Op-ed writing won’t renew the republic of letters; young conservatives need bona fide journalism skills.
Third, conservatives need to renew community groups that instill in their members a sense of duty and responsibility. Without those fundamental values, young people won’t understand the importance of engaging locally nor how local news is a part of responsible citizenship. Many journalists pursue journalism because they see its importance in making society better or keeping leaders honest. But they’ve failed to keep the flame alive as other members of society have become less engaged. Fake news or disinformation isn’t as big of a threat to the future of journalism as the disappearing values of citizenship in society at large.