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Articles about the work of Campbell Robertson

News Article or Opinion Piece?
smartertimes.com

Today's New York Times features both a front-page news article and an op-ed page opinion piece about the threat posed by greedy, unlicensed tax preparers. Here's a quiz to see if you can tell the difference between the news article and the opinion piece:

Web headline: "Tax Preparers Targeting the Poor With High Fees"

That was the news article.

Passage from the text:

For millions of low-income Americans, tax season means the biggest one-time influx of money all year. It also means the annual sprouting of commercial tax preparers: some of them big-name franchises, some mom-and-pops and some, as 20-year-old Brittany Dixon discovered this year, shockingly expensive.

That was from the news article, too.

Another passage from the text:

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Smearing Jindal
smartertimes.com

A news article about the governor of Louisiana, Bobby Jindal reports, "surveys show a growing frustration with the annual deep cuts to higher education and health care." The article refers again to "routine deep budget cuts — made even deeper after routine midyear revenue shortfalls."

Maybe the Times could just tell us what the cuts were in percentage terms, or in absolute dollar terms, without characterizing them as "deep" or "even deeper"? That would allow readers to judge for themselves how deep the cuts are. But the Times prefers, it seems, to make that judgment on its own rather than allowing readers to think for themselves.

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Campbell Robertson

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