Unsubstantiated ideas are frequently published in the news media without a rigorous investigation into their veracity. Following their initial publication, these ideas are cited and re-cited by other news media organizations, and sometimes the originators themselves, creating a phenomenon known as "circular reporting," repeatedly breathing life into lies so long as they are not fact-checked.
Forty years ago today, President Nixon addressed the nation to announce he would be resigning the next day -- the only time in US history this has happened. Today, President Obama announced the US will be dropping bombs on Iraq once again. That's a pretty heavy-duty amount of the past to contemplate, in one week.