The Corner

Kerrey’s Wrongness

This reader focuses on precisely the reason I distinguished between the moral and ethical issues involved:

Jonah,

I don’t give a you know what about backgrounds being confidential. A man is trying to discredit a presidential administration during an election year, and implicate it as being guilty by omission in the deaths of 3000 American citizens (not to mention get rich in the process by pushing his book the same week he appears in what is supposed to be a nonpolitical public proceeding.) If he said anything to anyone that casts doubt on the credibility of his public statements, then I believe journalists have an ethical obligation to bring it to the public’s attention. Otherwise, the press can sit on their hands and watch the public being misled about its government. That would be beyond shameful. The focus should remain on the credibility of the accuser, not the party that reports the accuser’s contradictions.

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