Tag Archives: President Donald Trump

Woodward, Inc.

BY MICHAEL S. JOHNSON  |  SEP 20, 2020

What should have been a blinding dust storm of controversy over the pre-release promotion of Bob Woodward’s new book Rage, turned out to be a minor dust up quickly swept under the rug by most of the journalistic establishment.

The media seem to adore Woodward and largely for good reason. His stature is iconic. He paved the way for a whole class of tell-all books that have no doubt made some enterprising reporters a lot of money. He and Watergate sidekick Carl Bernstein were modern-day pioneers in a new brand of investigative reporting powerful enough to bring down a President. He is a publishing industry tycoon. What a guy.

The pre-release public relations campaign for Rage, however, raised enough troubling ethical questions that the press should not have let slip through the crack of professional courtesy so easily. Continue reading

Institutions and Values Part III: Lies and Damn Lies

BY MICHAEL S. JOHNSON  |  AUG 7, 2018

Within the currency of American values, none has been devalued more than honesty. It’s become okay to lie, especially within one of America’s great institutions, our political process.

Definition of Lie_Merriam WebsterA lie, according to Merriam Webster, is to “make an untrue statement with the intent to deceive.”

A scholarly analysis of lying produced at Michigan State University cited this definition:

“Simply and broadly lying occurs when a communicator seeks knowingly and intentionally to mislead others….” and another conclusion: “Thus it is not sufficient that something is false for it to be a lie; it is the intent that distinguishes the lie.”

But in politics, as in life today, lying is becoming commonplace.

Continue reading