It is amusing to see modern journalists get all offended and pearl-clutchy when anyone suggests they might be more interested in advancing a political agenda than uncovering truth and reporting it.

While there are no doubt some journalists who seek truth, most do not. I submit the percentage of journalists who objectively seek truth is roughly equivalent to the percentage of the population in general who seek truth.

This is not a new phenomena.

Near the end of his second term, knowing he was going to retire from public life, George Washington had this thought on newspapers:

He wrote that they are filled “with all the invective that disappointment, ignorance of facts, and malicious falsehoods could invent to misrepresent my politics.” See Alexander Hamilton, by Ron Chernow, p. 505.

Nothing has changed.

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I see a similar pattern with how some view the modern FBI. Any suggestion that they are anything less than idealistic crime-fighters who only care about protecting the American Way is likewise greeted by some with equal pearl-clutchiness. That reaction is a farce.

The base political machinations that are being uncovered currently bely the need to hold any jewelry tightly in one’s hand. 1

Again, this not a new phenomena. J. Edgar Hoover essentially created the FBI. He ran it for half a century. He used it as his own fiefdom. He used it to collect information on public officials and private figures for straight-up blackmail. Pretending the FBI has ever been virtuous is a bad joke.

Nothing has changed.

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  1. Ok, maybe I am stretching out the pearl-clutching thing a bit too far. I own it.