NPR logo Have Journalists Gone Soft?

Have Journalists Gone Soft?

Here's one that caught my over the weekend. Writer Sam Schulman complained in the Wall Street Journal that journalists have gone soft... proudly confessing to being duped by mortgage brokers and stock brokers.

All of this is hard to take. Journalists are supposed to mock, not to be mocked. There was a time when the great danger, for mass-circulation writers, was not the proud confession of their own naivet?? and stupidity but an excess of knowingness, an eagerness to go too far in attacking life's "suckers." As the hardbitten reporter played by Jean Arthur, full of remorse, says of the rube Gary Cooper in Frank Capra's "Mr. Deeds Goes to Town" (1936): "He has been the victim of every conniving crook in town. The newspapers pounced on him, made him a target for their feeble humor. I was smarter than the rest of them: I got closer to him, so I could laugh louder." Now softbitten reporters are dumber than the rest of us, and they prefer to laugh at themselves.

Read the rest of it here.

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