The Washington Post editors have been gloriously harrumphing about increased need for objectivity. Ken Houghton at The Angry Bear notes:
But when your Ombudsman claims that your readers “typically demand coverage that is unfailingly neutral,” and cites as an example of “crossing the line” one of your reporters making a statement of fact:
“We can incur all sorts of federal deficits for wars and what not,” Raju Narisetti wrote on his Twitter feed. “But we have to promise not to increase it by $1 for healthcare reform? Sad.”
There is no purpose for your organization to even claim it publishes news.
At this point, I am no longer shocked by the decrepitude and mendacity of the editors of the Washington Post, but I was surprised by the comments at the Angry Bear. Yes, technically speaking, Narisetti was not being objective by offering the commentary of “Sad.” But consider what that implies:
1) Noting that some programs are not held to certain budgetary standards while others are not is editorializing.
2) Espousing the crazy idea that healing sick people should have at least as much legitimacy as maiming and killing people is editorializing.
Sure, #2 in particular is editorializing, but so what? Have we sunk to the point where the notion that healing people is as legitimate as blowing them up (if not more so) is somehow controversial? Are there people who think healing the sick is less legitimate than killing them?
Oh, I forgot: Fred Hiatt et alia.