Archive for politifact

Fact Checking The Talking Heads? Why Fox News Is Nervous

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truthometer

Time marches on. First we had Fox News. No checking of statements or facts. Just say whatever works for the Right wing and it will be accepted as gospel.

Then comes along PolitiFact. It's a fact checking group who's mission is to take apart widely circulated stories and do some fact checking on them. The stories are rated on their veracity. That started to keep some of the more outrageous claims to a limit -- or at least allowed for a tamping down of the total fabrications. But even the results of the PolitiFact findings were often called into question -- just ask Rachel Maddow.

Now, born November 1st, just a few days ago is PunditFact, a site dedicated to checking claims by pundits, columnists, bloggers and the hosts and guests of talk shows.

According to the source itself, PolitiFact.com:

PunditFact is a partnership of PolitiFact and the Poynter Institute, the journalism school that owns the Tampa Bay Times.

The new site will have a dedicated staff of journalists who will research claims by media figures and rate them using PolitiFact’s Truth-O-Meter. The fact-checks will be published on PunditFact.com and will often be featured on the main PolitiFact site.

This could be interesting.

Soon those nattering nabobs of negativism, the jabbering ninnies of the networks will be encouraged to do more than just read the stories handed to them. They might have to actually start listening the the balderdash that comes out of their echo chambers. These pundits will be held to veracity levels that heretofore escaped them -- just like the hot air most expel with each eye-rolled sigh and statement they made courtesy of their teleprompters.

Will it matter? Will it change anything? Probably not, but it will be fodder for more criticism and conjecture.

How truthful is O'Reilly? Chris Wallace? Joe Scarborough and Sean Hannity? Well, if PolitiFact is any guideline as to the accuracy of facts and verisimilitude of PunditFact itself, Rachel Maddow will most likely nail it as she had done in the past. They ought to be sued for their own lack of fact checking.

While it remains to be seen who the most trusted name in news will be, the act of rating talking heads promises to be a fun one. Now if we can just hook up these people to get a large, non-lethal jolt of electricity every time they lie, we'd have a lot more fun with this. If we turn up the juice, we might even have ourselves a Hunger Games of News -- and around election time, won't that be fun?

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Study: Media Fact-Checker Says Republicans Lie More

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mindblown

Whowouldathunk?

A leading media fact-checking organization rates Republicans as less trustworthy than Democrats, according to a new study by the Center for Media and Public Affairs (CMPA) at George Mason University. The study finds that PolitiFact.com has rated Republican claims as false three times as often as Democratic claims during President Obama’s second term. Republicans continue to get worse marks in recent weeks, despite controversies over Obama administration statements on Benghazi, the IRS and the AP.

(snip)

The study examined 100 statements involving factual claims by Democrats (46 claims) and Republicans (54 claims), which were fact-checked by PolitiFact.com during the four month period from the start of President Obama’s second term on January 20 through May 22, 2013.

Major findings:

PolitiFact rated 32% of Republican claims as “false” or “pants on fire,” compared to 11% of Democratic claims – a 3 to 1 margin. Conversely, Politifact rated 22% of Democratic claims as “entirely true” compared to 11% of Republican claims – a 2 to 1 margin.

A majority of Democratic statements (54%) were rated as mostly or entirely true, compared to only 18% of Republican statements. Conversely, a majority of Republican statements (52%) were rated as mostly or entirely false, compared to only 24% of Democratic statements.

Despite controversies over Obama administration statements regarding Benghazi, the IRS and the Associated Press, Republicans have continued to fare worse than Democrats, with 60% of their claims rated as false so far this month (May 1 – May 22), compared to 29% of Democratic statements – a 2 to 1 margin.

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Lie of the Year: the Romney campaign's ad on Jeeps made in China

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See? Do something often enough you get really good at it!

It was a lie told in the critical state of Ohio in the final days of a close campaign — that Jeep was moving its U.S. production to China. It originated with a conservative blogger, who twisted an accurate news story into a falsehood. Then it picked up steam when the Drudge Report ran with it. Even though Jeep’s parent company gave a quick and clear denial, Mitt Romney repeated it and his campaign turned it into a TV ad.

And they stood by the claim, even as the media and the public expressed collective outrage against something so obviously false.

People often say that politicians don’t pay a price for deception, but this time was different: A flood of negative press coverage rained down on the Romney campaign, and he failed to turn the tide in Ohio, the most important state in the presidential election.

PolitiFact has selected Romney’s claim that Barack Obama "sold Chrysler to Italians who are going to build Jeeps in China" at the cost of American jobs as the 2012 Lie of the Year.

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Video- The Rachel Maddow Show: Politifact, You're Fired

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Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Jeff's on vacation this week to be able to take me back and forth, and he's watched more MSNBC evening line up than ever. (Rachel is his fave) Last night he watched this segment and afterwards came sputtering into the computer room with this totally wtf'd look on his face. It's so easy to forget that not everyone in this country knows what we know, but easy to realize that maybe if they did, things would be different.

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Video- The Daily Show: Fox News False Statements

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Jon Stewart is a gem.

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Video- Rachel Maddow Spanks Politifact

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Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

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PolitiFact's Lie of the Year: 'A government takeover of health care'

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This is the lie I would have gone with also, this or "death panels".

In the spring of 2009, a Republican strategist settled on a brilliant and powerful attack line for President Barack Obama's ambitious plan to overhaul America's health insurance system. Frank Luntz, a consultant famous for his phraseology, urged GOP leaders to call it a "government takeover."

"Takeovers are like coups," Luntz wrote in a 28-page memo. "They both lead to dictators and a loss of freedom."

The line stuck. By the time the health care bill was headed toward passage in early 2010, Obama and congressional Democrats had sanded down their program, dropping the "public option" concept that was derided as too much government intrusion. The law passed in March, with new regulations, but no government-run plan.

(snip)

PolitiFact editors and reporters have chosen "government takeover of health care" as the 2010 Lie of the Year. Uttered by dozens of politicians and pundits, it played an important role in shaping public opinion about the health care plan and was a significant factor in the Democrats' shellacking in the November elections.

Readers of PolitiFact, the St. Petersburg Times' independent fact-checking website, also chose it as the year's most significant falsehood by an overwhelming margin. (Their second-place choice was Rep. Michele Bachmann's claim that Obama was going to spend $200 million a day on a trip to India, a falsity that still sprouts.)

By selecting "government takeover' as Lie of the Year, PolitiFact is not making a judgment on whether the health care law is good policy.

The phrase is simply not true.

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