Funny about Money

The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing. ―Edmund Burke

News You Can Believe (More or less) (Free, mostly)

News hunger! Several readers remarked happily when I mentioned some of my favorite news sites the other day. We Netizens have a bottomless pit of news and play-nooz sites from which to build our powerfully held opinions. So many of them do we have that it’s difficult to discern which are reliable, credible sources.

But lo! I have a list — in the form of FireFox’s list of all my bookmarks of news sites. From that, it’s fairly easy to generate a page showing some of the Web’s best places to keep abreast of current happenings. As I remarked the other day, NPR, PBS, and BBC are probably the best of the bunch, in terms of objectivity and intelligence. USA Today is also an excellent source of national and international news, with less pretension to high-browitude. The Christian Science Monitor, interestingly enough, is still a fine source of objective reportage.

As we know, some excellent reporting takes place at newspapers that have an editorial slant. Below, a few from the left and from the right. And given the presence of agenda reporting, it’s important to have a strong Bullshit Detector…or three. I use them all. Frequently.

Investigative reporting is expensive for an organization to underwrite and requires special skills. As a result, we hardly ever see it in local publications, and it has become fairly rare in national media. This is not good: investigative reporting is what the Fourth Estate is all about, and it is the reason freedom of the press is key to keeping America free. Fortunately, investigative reporters live on, largely supported by nonprofits and specialized groups.

And of course, our lives would not be complete without our daily dose of business and science reporting.

National, International, and General News

NPR News

Minnesota Public Radio

San Francisco Public Radio

Los Angeles Public Radio

Boston Public Radio

Phoenix Public Radio

PBS Newshour


Christian Science Monitor

USA Today

News with an Agenda

New York Times (paywall after limited number of views)

Washington Post (paywall after limited number of views)


Fox News

Drudge Report

Bullshit Detectors



Suburban Myths

Investigative & In-Depth

Investigative Reporters & Editors

International Consortium of Investigative Journalists

Center for Media & Democracy


The Intercept

Center for Public Integrity

Pro Publica


Mother Jones



Consumer Affairs

Business Week (ad-blocker blocker)

Wall Street Journal (paywall)

Forbes (adblock blocker)

The Business Journals



Astronomy Picture of the Day


Scientific American

Medpage Today

Retraction Watch

Smithsonian Magazine (paywall after limited number of views)

Aviation Week & Space Technology

One of these days (later!), I’ll list these links in a sidebar. So, watch this space…



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Author: funny

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  1. On the ‘science’ side, you might want to include “Aviation Week and Space Technology”.
    They have straightforward articles regarding some Military items and commercial air travel.
    Not easy reads all the time.

    • Ohhh, great idea!

      These things don’t have to be easy reads…although it must be admitted that I didn’t include the New York Review of Books because of its articles’ length & complexity. Hm. Maybe we have two more to add…

  2. I agree with most of the sources on your list. I’m still a little skeptical of BuzzFeed, even though it has tried to clean up its act. And I would not put the Washington Post or NYT under the same heading as the cable news channels. While both newspapers clearly demonstrate an agenda in their choice of stories to pursue, they do actual reporting. Cable news at its best, on the other hand, is generally two sentences of fact followed by pundits’ endless speculation or analysis. Some outlets don’t even seem to care about the facts. The goal is to engage viewers with controversy.
    I heard a snippet of an NPR interview on Thanksgiving about conversations.
    The subject’s take was that we have forgotten how to have a conversation in which we listen and learn from the other person rather than just stating our own opinions, and she partly blamed cable news.
    Here is a site that I find helpful in telling what is factual from fake online. It is produced by the City University of New York Graduate School of Journalism. The research takes some time, but once you’ve validated a site, you’re good to go.

  3. Ah, this CUNY site has got to go into the “Bullshit Detectors” category! Thanks for the lead. 🙂

    Well, you have to say about most TV news: it’s gnus you can yooze… Much of it is so ephemeral it’s hard to know what to make of it. Cable gnus, where the goal appears to be to fill as much air time as they can sell ad space around, surely is too often superficial, shoot-from-the-hip, and pundit-ridden. And there’s no question that some of my friends on both side of the spectrum say they can’t have a conversation because people they care about have bought into this or that party line to such a profound degree that they won’t hear anything that doesn’t agree with some preconceived spin.

    Remains to be seen, doesn’t it, whether America can survive this particular plague.

  4. Check out this one. Veritas (the organization that tries to discredit media) tried to scam the Washington Post. The reporters did what they are supposed to do — check their facts before publishing — and caught her. Fascinating stories of journalism done right. Really scary that some people will believe Veritas version.