But Hoyt focuses on a phony conflict issue and relegates the real issue to one paragraph:

On Thursday, he came under attack from a blogger for The Atlantic for not mentioning in his book that his wife had twice filed for bankruptcy — the second time while they were married, though Andrews said it involved an old loan from a family member. He said he had wanted to spare his wife any more embarrassment. The blogger said the omission undercut Andrews’s story, but I think it was clear that he and his wife could not manage their finances, bankruptcies or no. Still, he should have revealed the second one, if only to head off the criticism.

Look, Andrews and Clark are both right that there’s plenty of information available for readers to know that Andrews and his wife couldn’t manage their money. This lapse is no high crime.

But that doesn’t excuse it. The bankruptcies are simply part of the story, and there’s no way around that. It’s not even a close call.

Just say so.

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Ryan Chittum is a former Wall Street Journal reporter, and deputy editor of The Audit, CJR's business section. If you see notable business journalism, give him a heads-up at rc2538@columbia.edu. Follow him on Twitter at @ryanchittum.