Louis Menand at The New Yorker:

The power of the press, such as it is, is like the power of academic scholars, scientific researchers, and Supreme Court Justices. It is not backed by force. It rests on faith: the belief that these are groups of people dedicated to pursuing the truth without fear or favor. Once they disclaim that function, they will be perceived in the way everyone else is now perceived, as spinning for gain or status.