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Babel

Ronald Dore discovers that it is not only British tabloids which make up stories

By Ronald Dore   March 1997

If you have to fill a column and are a little unsure of your facts or of the weight your own opinions will carry, just invent an authoritative source. Preferably, of course, it should be a plausible and wholly fictitious Professor Bunbury. But if your imagination will not run to that, and you feel in a reckless mood, then cite an actual person, preferably somebody unlikely to read what you have written. The only snag is that you have a good chance of being fired if your editor finds out. But not apparently in Italy.

It was the local baker…

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