Not long ago, it was hard to write a column. Guys like Mike Royko used to have to get up from their desks, get into a car and ask people questions in neighborhoods that were sometimes dicey. Neighborhoods, I'm told, that had no decent restaurants for expense lunches. Back then, when the concept of news was limited to what happens to other people, editors wouldn't even consider something as monumental as a columnist's own mother's wedding to be newsworthy.

Then along came Larry King. King, in USA Today, reinvented the concept of the column, making it the easiest job in...

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