I sometimes compare press officers to riflemen on the Somme -- mowing down wave upon wave of distortion, taking out rank upon rank of supposition, deduction and gossip.
The media ... is like an oil painting. Close up, it looks like nothing on Earth. Stand back and you get the drift.
Blood sport is brought to its ultimate refinement in the gossip columns.
Confidentiality is the nature of all governments. Of course you may say, the government will always want to communicate the good news; things which bring satisfaction, cheer, help or pleasure to voters. And of course, you are right, governments are not masochists by nature.
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