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July 27, 2005

Why Oh Why Can't We Have a Better Press Corps? (David Sanger/New York Times Edition)

Eric Umansky writes:

Eric Umansky: Decontructing a Bogus Leak: ArmsControlWonk nails the NYT David Sanger, who hyped a story he knew was shaky (or at least had evidence was shaky), a week later was forced to row back a bit and flag what he had buried in the original piece, and now nearly three months later pens a Page One piece saying his sources were wrong and were passing along what normal people would call gossip.

That the NYT Page One'd that final story is admirable, though it would have been better if the piece also explained the role the Times played in hyping the bogus leak in the first place.

Anyway, it's not like the story was about an important topic with, say, major policy decisions hanging in the balance. It was just an article about one peaceful little country, with whom the U.S. has had no tension, getting ready to explode a big freakin' bomb.

I'm not sure I'd describe glossing over your role as a megaphone for disinformation as "admirable." It has reached the point with the political (not business) reporters of the New York Times that the first question you have to ask is "who is this reporter shilling for today?"

Posted by DeLong at July 27, 2005 01:37 PM