The first rule of journalism is a bit rude but easy to remember. When you’re writing never assume anything. If you do it makes an “ass” of “u” and “me.” It might take extra time, but save yourself the embarrassment of trying to retract something. This first rule has a corollary. If it sounds too good to be true it probably isn’t. Watch out for things that you want to be true because they confirm your cherished beliefs. It is not a character weakness to be skeptical. It’s wise.