“I’m a journalist,” she said.
“No, you’re not. You’re a propagandist. People in your position lost the privilege to call themselves journalists long ago.”
“I tell important stories,” she insisted.
“You tell important stories, through your own eyes. Literally. The appeal of reading your stories is that you’re the one telling them, right? You crowd-fund trips abroad, you offer the most milquetoast analysis on the tamest of issues, and people buy it because you make them feel like they’re fighting The Man through you. But you’re not fighting The Man. You’re being used – being misled and misleading your followers as well.”
“They send you on an all-expenses paid vacation to a CIA black site where they torture and murder, where people like me disappear, and you are going to show everyone how transparent our government is while glossing over everything they won’t show you, leaving all the juicy parts out because you just good-faith assume people are going to tell you everything, because you’re so damn earnest and cute, right?”
“I blew the lid off the NYPD getting panthers.”
“You did not. But even then, a few days later, your source is off the street and in jail. You did all the footwork for the pigs, broadcasting everything about this guy to God knows who.”
“Menendez was selling heroin,” she said, her voice growing too quiet for the bar.
“Bullshit, he was one of the best organizers they had out there. And he thought he was doing something smart in talking to you.”
“How dare you.” Caroline was developing a furious flush.
“You’re all a bunch of fucking spooks. And look at your face. You don’t even know it.”