Newspapers don’t tell the truth under many different, and occasionally innocent, scenarios. Mostly when they don’t know the truth. Or when they quote someone who does not know the truth.
And more and more, when they quote someone who is spinning the truth, shaping it to some preconceived version of a story that is supposed to be somehow better than the truth, omitting details that could be embarrassing.
And finally, when they quote someone who is flat-out lying. There is a lot of spinning and a lot of lying in our times—in politics, in government, in sports and everywhere. It’s gotten to a point where, if you are like me, you no longer believe the first version of anything. It wasn’t always that way.
The former executive editor of the Washington Post died at 93 this week. I use the quote in my analysis “In News Reporting There Is No Truth, Just Perspective“, because what Ben says so superbly supports some of my argument.