A Constant Struggle

Ambinder mediates on the difficulty of reporting the truth:

If you assume that you know everything, nothing will satisfy you. When a journalist makes a judgment based on experience and on seeking out as many different sources of information as possible, if you are predisposed to agree with the outcome, then you will not complain of bias. If you disagree with the judgment, you will find some way to attribute it to blatant bias, or to a pack mentality, or to a savvy village, or whatever.

Earlier in the day, he answered those readers who charge him with stenography:

I've found that I enjoy trying to figure out the difference between what the Obama administration is saying about what it is doing and why it is actually doing what it is doing. So I often write posts that explain what the powers that be are trying to accomplish even if -- especially if -- they're presenting a different face to the public. For this I am often accused of stenography. If pointing out complicated motivations and explaining policy choices is automatically assumed by the reader to be a validation of said explanations and policies, then, well, I'm one hell of a stenographer. Occasionally, my prose trips me up, but more often than not, the small minority of readers who don't get it simply don't get it. They're the ones who will e-mail, write and comment, so they're the ones I try to engage with, usually fruitlessly.