Paul Ryan is the Latest in a String of Honest Men Who Weren’t

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Liberals have spent the past year complaining that Paul Ryan isn’t the courageous truth-teller that the press corps has made him out to be. Today, Bob Somerby reminds us that Ryan is hardly the first to get this treatment:

For the past twenty years, the press corps has invented a string of Most Honest Men:

Paul Tsongas, Bill Bradley, Saint John McCain? All were pronounced The Most Honest Man—and all were soon issuing gruesome and weird misstatements.

Colin Powell was The World’s Most Honest Man too. After that, he made that peculiar presentation at the UN!

On the bright side, the press corps seems to have caught on to Ryan’s flimflammery a little bit faster than usual. On the not-so-bright side, I can’t tell if this is because the press corps has gotten better or because Ryan’s schtick is more transparent than his predecessors’. Unfortunately, it’s probably the latter. You have to keep the blinders pretty firmly attached these days to keep buying Ryan’s particular brand of happy talk.

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You just sent an incredible message: that quality journalism doesn't have to answer to advertisers, billionaires, or hedge funds; that newsrooms can eke out an existence thanks primarily to the generosity of its readers. That's so powerful. Especially during what's been called a "media extinction event" when those looking to make a profit from the news pull back, the Mother Jones community steps in.

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