Thursday, January 28, 2010

Fact Checking the Fact Checkers

I really like to be told when I'm wrong, as well as seeing things from other perspectives; as that's the only way to really keep on top of my game.  And so I always make a point of reading the "fact check" pieces that Yahoo cites on their frontpage, as a way of knowing if Obama's lying to me.  But unfortunately, they rely upon the Associated Press, which relies upon bozos who have an extremely loose concept of "facts."  Apparently, it took six reporters to find nine items to fact check; little of which would require even minor corrections.

I'm not even going to bother doing a line-by-line fact check of this fact check, as almost every "correction" falls into one of two categories: Correcting claims that Obama never said and pointing out that Congress might not do what Obama wants it to do.  Like when they cite his claim that people can keep their health insurance under his plan, then call him to task because he didn't explain that insurance companies might raise costs or change the plans.  As if he said they wouldn't.

Or when Obama cited Congress's failure to form a Deficit Commission before saying that he's making one of his own; which is "fact checked" because Obama's commission won't be binding on Congress, while Congress's might have been.  And that's it.  It's not that Obama is lying; it's merely that he didn't explain how his commission might be different from the one Congress would have created.

And another time, they "fact checked" him because not everyone agrees that his policies saved two million jobs.  And because the CBO says it can't make such a determination, therefore Obama is wrong...or something.  And that's the weird thing about the fact check, in that they really don't seem to feel comfortable with the concept of facts, and seem to be calling him to task for making any factual claims at all. 

And I suspect that this is really what their big beef is.  It's not that Obama is a liar; it's that he's positing an objective reality, and that simply blows their minds.  Apparently, that's not what they teach in journalism school anymore.  Six reporters.  Six.  And this is the best they can do.  Is it any wonder an extremely unpopular political party can pretend to be masters of the universe when bozos like this are the gatekeepers of truth?

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