Accessibility for screenreader – source credibility

George W. Bush at an NCAA college basketball game on Dec. 17 in Dallas. A piece in the New Yorker said Bush “is widely considered the worst President of the modern era.” (Brandon Wade/Associated Press)
By Barton Swaim January 1

Barton Swaim is author of “The Speechwriter: A Brief Education in Politics.”

When I was young, my friends and I would support our more improbable factual claims by following them with the words “ask anyone.” One of us would make a preposterous statement, another would say it wasn’t true, and the response would be something like: “Sure it is. Ask anyone.” In time, we would learn that the rules for corroborating assertions were more stringent and that disputable claims required either reasoned argument or reference to a reputable source.

Lately, though, I’ve wondered whether some journalists are relying too much on the “ask anyone” method of citation. Its more sophisticated form appears

Accessibility for screenreader Home Page Politics Opinions Sports Local National World Business Tech Lifestyle Entertainment Video Photography Washington Post Live Live Chats Real Estate Cars Jobs WP BrandConnect Classifieds Partners washingtonpost.com 1996-2015 The Washington Post Terms of Service Privacy Policy Submissions and Discussion Policy RSS Terms of Service Ad Choices Opinions It’s time to curb this widely committed journalistic sin

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