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Fahrenthold

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I maintain a digital subscription to the New York Times. I do this because it seems marginally worth it to have unlimited access to a major national newspaper, although it’s a fairly close call, and I’ve contemplated giving it up a few times. (I’m currently getting a very good teaser deal because I called up threatening to cancel.) Why the Times? Habit, mostly. The Times and the Washington Post both have very real and clear strengths and weaknesses, but I can’t claim to have ever done a serious accounting of them that led me to the conclusion the Times was a better choice. I’ve just always read it, going back to grad school when M-F campus pickup paper subscriptions were so cheap as to be virtually free. I’ve seen a number of people, in comments here and elsewhere, threatening and/or pledging to cancel their subscription for the express purpose of protesting the extraordinary and appalling return of the “Clinton Rules” and I’ve had some sympathy with that sentiment. I’m skeptical this kind of protest will ever occur in the kind of numbers necessary to have practical value, but I don’t have much confidence in that judgment, and it would certainly feel right.

That said, I never hear anyone talk about the opposite. I’m thinking if I do go through with such a course of action, I’ll also sign up for a Washington Post subscription at least to get me through the election, and if I do, I’ll make a point of letting them know that I’m signing up primarily to gain access to the outstanding and important investigative journalism of David Farhenthold on the Trump Foundation. Whatever fleeting value negative reinforcement might have, positive reinforcement might have it too. And while both sides do it hackery may wax and wain, it has always and will always be with us, while the same can’t be said for resource-intensive long term investigative journalism Fahrenthold is doing.

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