Columnists: The Tenacious Muckraker

Drew Pearson once remarked that his job as a newspaperman was "to spur the lazy, watch the weak and expose the corrupt." For 37 years, until his death of a heart attack last week at 71, Pearson took on that task with the zeal of a cub reporter and earned for himself more controversy than any other journalist of his time. In the view of his admirers, he provided extra-constitutional checks and balances against negligence, incompetence and malfeasance by public officials. From detractors, he prompted unprintable epithets and paroxysms of billingsgate. A...

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