You may think they don't do enough or as much as they used to, but it still exists and is still important.
That is why I said managed, rather than non-existent. Stories have been delayed and modified quite often at the request of government. It's not so much that the information gets out, since it is hard to truly stop disclosure. NSA wiretapping - Delayed at the request of government, Yellowcake/Joseph Wilson incident - war buildup/political revenge, too many examples of news and govt getting into bed to list. The US news is very much a managed resource, since information is power. Heck, it would be completely stupid of them to ignore such a powerful tool.
Then there is the fact that you almost never see anything that would remotely indicate a change from the current Oligarchy. 2004 arrest of two presidential candidates, investigative work by GATA (although that is gaining traction), Ron Paul's approval numbers higher than a lot of "front runner" R candidates but almost zero media coverage, etc.
A lot of it could be explained away as individual incidents, but taken as a whole it points to a troubling reality.