Jefferson Against Newspapers
By Bryan Caplan
When I was reading some famous quotes about newspapers, I came across Jefferson‘s famous line that, “Were it left to me to decide whether we should have a government without newspapers, or newspapers without a government, I should not hesitate a moment to prefer the latter.”
Literally speaking, I agree with this quote, but most people interpret it as an ode to newspapers. So I was surprised to learn that all of Jefferson’s other famous newspaper quotes are extremely critical:
Advertisements contain the only truths to be relied on in a newspaper.
I do not take a single newspaper, nor read one a month, and I feel myself infinitely the happier for it.
And best of all:
The man who reads nothing at all is better educated than the man who reads nothing but newspapers.
Wow, Ansolabehere, Snowberg, and Snyder should have put that quote at the head of their paper.