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Why We Love Anonymous Sources

Yes, Fourth Estate, public interest blah blah, Mark Felt, yeah, yeah, sanctity of pledge to whistleblowers, good, fine. But the real reason to hail this noble journalistic tradition is that in the hands of gimlet-eyed purveyors of righteous scorn like Jason Vest, it can yields quotes like this, about Joe Wilson:


"In principle, what was done to [Valerie Plame] was shitty, and someone should pay, but the way [Wilson] always goes on about how it's the end of the world for her and national security while saying she's a real-life Jennifer Garner Alias character is just too damn much," says one. Similarly, prominent liberals have choked on Wilson's self-indulgence: At the Nation Institute's annual fundraising dinner last year, some found any inspirational qualities Wilson had to offer swamped by the tsunami-like wave of his continuous ego trip. "It wasn't just that he was sheets to the wind when he gave his speech, it was the sheer self-righteousness of it
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