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On one recent day President Reagan was amiably informing reporters on his ranch that they must have brought the fog with them. On almost the next day the Washington Post was reporting a poll in which more than half the pollees agreed that the major news media often cover up stories and reporters often give too much of their own opinions and not enough facts. Half the pollees denied that editors and reporters are more arrogant than other people, though more than 60 percent considered the media invaders of privacy.

is somebody trying to tell somebody something? When the President jokes, that's one thing. When private citizens express doubts, that's another. Our own impression is that their impressions are due more to lapses of competence than abuses of intention on the part of us newsmongers. But that's no excuse for not doing better.

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