So That’s the Rest of the Story

by Dan Ward

I wasn’t surprised to learn that legendary broadcaster Paul Harvey occasionally sought assistance in writing his scripts. Every good writer knows the power of constructive criticism.

But who would have expected that the respected commentator turned to the FBI for such advice, and that he sent advance copies of scripts to them for review and edit?

If such an undisclosed relationship between a respected news broadcaster and a government agency became public today, we’d hear calls for investigations and a demand for heightened transparency.

Actually, Harvey’s relationship with the FBI doesn’t seem so different from the cozy relationships many journalists enjoy with high-ranking government officials. The issue is whether those relationships are transparent, and whether they impact the objectivity of the journalist or the news organization.

I mean, imagine if we learn tomorrow that MSNBC commentators regularly endorse Democratic proposals, and that FOX leans heavily to the right. It would make us all question the accuracy of their news reports … wouldn’t it?

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