Thursday, December 01, 2005

Objectivity Again

An interesting example of what the current journalistic mode of writing demands. The Pentagon has been planting articles in the Iraqi press, and paying friendly journalists. The New York Times comes down with the following unusually angry denunciation.
Even as the State Department and the United States Agency for International Development pay contractors millions of dollars to help train journalists and promote a professional and independent Iraqi media, the Pentagon is paying millions more to the Lincoln Group for work that appears to violate fundamental principles of Western journalism.
All in the third person, but also non-factive: the phrasing "principles of western journalism" leaves the crucial ambiguity between accepted principles and binding normative principles. I'd love to learn to be able to write like that.

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