05/20/2005 12:26 pm ET Updated May 25, 2011

Re: Arianna's Turning Point, lies about Iraq etc.

I can't recall his exact words, but the gist was:

"I don't mind people feeling entitled to their own opinions, but now they feel entitled to their own facts!"
- Jack Beatty of The Atlantic Monthly, on Talk of the Nation

Focus on the word "entitled." We cling to the notion that people were manipulated into believing that Saddam was involved in 9/11 etc. But the situation is much more dire. People feel entitled to believe whatever they want about anything. They experience this as a right. They are, in effect, virtual revolutionaries authorized to furnish the world with facts the way they furnish their homes, their iPods and TiVos and Bookmarks. If you listen for this tone of entitlement on the call-in shows, you'll hear it...

It is a very dangerous thing.