A Daily Dose of Truth II

By Andrew R. Duckworth

Photo and editing by Andrew R. Duckworth

David Goodman was excited for his new assignment, straight out of college and ready to make his mark on the world of journalism. A Daily Dose of Truth had been his favorite news syndicate for the last two years and to finally be given a shot with the company he admired was a breath of fresh air. Finally, he felt as if he had a shot at forging a legacy, at actually ‘being somebody.’

There he was, sitting in front of a large, wooden desk with a dark finish and carvings all down the legs. Behind it, a shelf of hardback books arranged by author. And, on the desk, a golden nameplate, “Peter Vice, Chief Editor.”

“Well, well, well, if it isn’t a Mr….” Peter Vice stumbled through his notes as he walked into the room. “Mr. Goodman!” Vice dropped a stack of papers on his desk and offered a soft handshake. “You a real go-getter?”

“I am, sir,” Goodman said, standing up to shake the man’s hand. “It’s very nice to meet you! And this opportunity is the chance of a lifetime. I’ve been reading ‘A Daily Dose of Truth’ since it started!”

“My goodness, I’m glad to hear it!” Vice said. “A go-getter and a fan! Just what this company needs! And, let me tell you, we were very impressed by your résumé! Very impressive work! Your thesis for your Masters, and I’ll admit, I can’t remember it right off hand, but I remember being impressed!”

“Well,” Goodman said a bit shakily, “thanks!”

“Absolutely! Absolutely!” Vice sat in his massive leather chair. “So, if you get the position, you’ll be filling in some fairly big shoes! The last guy… well, let’s just say he couldn’t cut it. Didn’t necessarily agree with the work we’re doing here. How do you feel about the work we’re doing? What’s the last article you read?”

“I actually read the article this morning, the one concerning Jason Rome’s use of Aspirin to treat Shepherd’s Flu.”

“Ha! What a moron, am I right?” Vice said. “Completely ill advised! Went against everything drug authorities said to do!”

“That’s true!” Goodman agreed. “But you do have to admit, for a guy who is unvaccinated, his incredibly quick recovery must be some sort of medical marvel!”

There was a pause for a moment where the ticking of a large clock on the wall echoed throughout the room.

“Well, I guess that’s one way to look at it… I mean, the wrong way to look at it, but it is one way to look at it!” Vice added. “Well, look, we’re on a big push right now. What’s the one thing that sells? You know?”

“For a news publication?”

“Well, sure, or anything for that matter.”

“Integrity!” Goodman launched with enthusiasm.

“Ha! Try again.”

“Um… Sex?”

“Try fear.”


“You bet!” Vice said. “Fear sells more than anything! Especially in a time like this!”

“How do you figure, sir?”

“Simple! People LOVE to scare themselves! It’s like a drug, fear. A good adrenaline rush, and they’ll keep coming back and back and back and back. Same with the nightly cable news, which is dying, but the way. They’ve been on this thing since day one, driving up the fear as much as possible. Now, that made for terrible ratings for them, but excellent ratings for us!”

“So, wouldn’t that suggest that fear is bad in the news cycle?” Goodman questioned.

“Heavens no!” Vice replied. “You see, they do it first. People start to fear, but they want to see what other sources say. So, when a majority of the online publications start following the trend, the public has little other places to look. They can’t get away from the drug if they try! And once they’re hooked, they’re hooked. Think of the cable networks as sort of a… sacrificial lamb. They die to make way for us. Our product.”


“Well, we do sell subscriptions,” Vice said. “What we produce is something to be consumed, eaten and digested. But our product, unlike most others, is building towards a better world.”

“Is it really our job to ‘build towards a better world’?”

“What do you mean? Isn’t it everyone’s job?”

“Well, sure, as individuals we should all see the value of a better world and work towards ways to get there.”

“Right on, kid!”

“But shouldn’t the prime focus of the news be reporting current events to the public… leaving the opinions to the people who read it?”

“Look, that worked years ago, right? Years ago! But the average reader nowadays? Not a neuron firing underneath that skullcap! It’s our job to make sure they’re following the right protocols, listening to the right people, doing the right things, and so on and so forth,” Vice mentioned. “The time for JUST reporting is over. But there’s this wonderful thing called commentary, and it’s our job to make sure that our readers hear the right message.”

“So, report the news AND indoctrinate?” Goodman asked. “That sounds a bit… Orwellian.”

“I thought you said you were a fan of our work here,” Vice interjected. “Thought you said you liked what we were doing.”

“I can discern between what is reporting and what is commentary.”

“So, you admit that the average reader needs help reaching their conclusions?”

“I can at least admit that the average reader doesn’t often pay attention,” Goodman said, his disappointed glare hitting the floor. “But, sir, I also have to admit, I have a different opinion of A Daily Dose of Truth than I did when I walked in.”


“No, I’m sorry to say, no.”

“So, what are you even doing here?”

“The opportunity to work for one of the nation’s leading up and coming publications sounded great, and I really do read this publication on the daily,” Goodman explained, “But, knowing the methods at work here, that might change quite a bit.”

“So, let’s just take a step back,” Vice said. “What I hear you saying to me right now is that you’re an anti-equality, anti-progress bigot hell-bent on spreading misinformation, that right?”

“I literally said none of that.”

“Well, I think this interview is over,” Vice said, giving a slight groan as he got up from his chair. “And, while we may not have gained a new employee, I think we might have gained a new headline. So, I trust that you can find your way out.” Vice motioned towards the door.

Goodman, although walking away still unemployed in a reckless economy, found himself in good spirits. He found out that one of his favorite publications was in the business of mass brainwashing and then came away with his dignity. Of course, that little flame of rage rekindled when he saw the latest A Daily Dose of Truth article titled “When the Enemy Attempts to Infiltrate: The Editor Who Interviewed an Illiterate Anti-science Bigot for an Opening has a Message for the Reader, ‘We Will Never Stop Working for You!’”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s