Scientology Hires Award Winning Journalists to Investigate SP Times

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Scientology Hires Award Winning Journalists to Investigate SP Times

Post  ChefXenu on Tue Feb 23, 2010 11:40 am

By Howard Kurtz
Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, February 22, 2010

After decades of digging into the Church of Scientology, reporters and editors at the St. Petersburg Times are accustomed to being denounced by its leaders.

But they find it unsettling that three veteran journalists -- a Pulitzer Prize winner, a former "60 Minutes" producer and the former executive director of Investigative Reporters and Editors -- are taking the church's money to examine the paper's conduct.

While the journalists have promised an independent review, the Times has refused to cooperate, saying their work will be used to fuel the church's ongoing campaign against the Florida paper.

"I ultimately couldn't take this request very seriously because it's a study bought and paid for by the Church of Scientology," says Executive Editor Neil Brown. "Candidly," he adds, "I was surprised and disappointed that journalists who I understand to have an extensive background in investigative reporting would think it's appropriate to ask me or our news organization to talk about that reporting while a) it's ongoing, and b) while they're being paid to ask these questions by the very subjects of our reporting."

As for accepting payment from the church, they said: "We were as objective in doing this job as we were in pursuing all the other assignments we've done for news organizations during the past 25 years."
Full story: Howard Kurtz - Scientology Church hires reporters to investigate newspaper - washingtonpost.com

I hope the journalists, if they are worthy of the appellation, secured an agreement that the story be published regardless of whether it supports the Scientology party-line.

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