Tag Archives: Lies

Fact-checking the fact-checkers: is Politifact reliable or biased?

Politifact is a web site run by some left-wing journalists at the Tampa Bay Times. As you might expect from academic studies of media bias, their content might as well be written by the Democrat Party. But it’s not enough to just declare Politifact a Democrat propaganda operation – I need to actually give you details and examples. And so I will, in the rest of this post.

Let’s start with two recent examples, then I’ll show you the worst example of media bias I have ever seen from Politifact.

Missouri Senate Race

Here’s one analysis from the Daily Wire:

On Tuesday, Politifact, which purports to be a neutral fact-checking website but in fact leans heavily to the left, got caught protecting a member of the Democratic Party: Democratic Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill.

Politifact took issue with the ad from The Senate Leadership Fund, a pro-Republican super PAC, that claimed that McCaskill said “normal people” could afford private planes.

[…]After they were corrected, Politifact acknowledged the mistake, writing,

Initially, we published this fact-check with a rating of False, because based on the video available, it did not appear that McCaskill was talking about private planes. After publication, we received more complete video of the question-and-answer session between McCaskill and a constituent that showed she was in fact responding to a question about private planes, as well as a report describing the meeting. We re-assessed the evidence, archived the original version here, and published the version you see here with a new rating of Half True. We apologize for the error.

Daily wire also linked to some more failed Politifact “fact checks”:  herehere, and here.

Arizona Senate Race

Politifact also screwed up their fact-check for the Arizona Senate race.

The Daily Caller explains:

PolitiFact incorrectly labeled it “mostly false” that Democratic Senate candidate Kyrsten Sinema “protested troops in a pink tutu” during its live fact-check of the Arizona Senate debate Monday night.

It’s an established fact that Sinema, a former Green Party activist who co-founded an anti-war group, wore a pink tutu at one of the multiple anti-war protests she attended in 2003.

“While we were in harm’s way, she was protesting our troops in a pink tutu,” Republican candidate Martha McSally, a former Air Force fighter pilot, said during Monday night’s debate.

Here’s their Politifact’s evaluation of McSally’s claim:

Who are you going to believe? Politifact, or your own eyes?
Who are you going to believe? Politifact, or your own eyes?

And here’s the photo of Kyrsten Sinema, protesting the troops, in a pink tutu:

Anti-war Democrat Senate candidate Kyrsten Sinema
Anti-war Democrat Senate candidate Kyrsten Sinema in a pink tutu

The Daily Caller notes:

A 2003 Arizona State University news article at the time described Sinema wearing “something resembling a pink tutu” at one of the protests.

[…]Sinema openly associated with fringe elements of the far-left during her anti-war activism.

She promoted an appearance by Lynne Stewart, a lawyer who was convicted of aiding an Islamic terrorist organization, in 2003.

Sinema also reportedly partnered with anarchists and witches in her anti-war activism and said she did “not care” if Americans wanted to join the Taliban.

Colonel Martha McSally, as I’ve blogged about before, is a former U.S. Air Force A-10 fighter pilot, and squadron commander. She logged a lot of hours leading actual combat missions against America’s enemies – the sorts of people who sell and rape Yazidi girls. She fought them.

And now for the big one: Politifact’s fact-checking of Obamacare.

Obama’s claims about Obamacare

Avik Roy, health care policy expert at Forbes magazine, wrote about Politifact’s assessment of Obama’s promise to Americans about keeping their health plans after Obamacare.

In 2008, before the presidential election, PolitiFact rated Obama’s claims about Obamacare “True”:

Roy writes: (links removed)

On October 9, 2008, Angie Drobnic Holan of PolitiFact published an article using the site’s “Truth-O-Meter” to evaluate this claim: “Under Barack Obama’s health care proposal, ‘if you’ve got a health care plan that you like, you can keep it.’”

And she concluded:

[…]…people who want to keep their current insurance should be able to do that under Obama’s plan. His description of his plan is accurate, and we rate his statement True.”

Roy notes:

PolitiFact’s pronouncements about Obamacare were widely repeated by pro-Obama reporters and pundits, and had a meaningful impact on the outcome of the election. Indeed, in 2009, PolitiFact won the Pulitzer Prize for its coverage of the 2008 campaign.

Here’s the screen capture from 2008:

Politifact caught with its pants on fire
Politifact says that everyone who likes their health care plan can keep it

Before the election, it’s true! And Obama got re-elected, because people believed that. But what happened after the election?

In 2013, after the 2012 election, PolitiFact rated Obama’s claims about Obamacare “Pants On Fire”:

Roy writes: (links removed)

On December 12, [2013] the self-appointed guardians of truth and justice at PolitiFact named President Obama’s infamous promise—that “if you like your health care plan, you can keep it”—its 2013 “Lie of the Year.”

[…][N]one of the key facts that made that promise “impossible” in 2008 had changed by 2013. The President’s plan had always required major disruption of the health insurance market; the Obamacare bill contained the key elements of that plan; the Obamacare law did as well. The only thing that had changed was the actual first-hand accounts of millions of Americans who were losing their plans now that Obamacare was live.

And the screen capture from 2013:

Politifact says: we were just kidding! Kidding!
Politifact said one thing before the election, and the opposite afterwards

So when Politifact rates a statement by a Democrat as true, what they really mean is that it’s pants-on-fire-false, but it’s election time so they don’t say that. It’s not like the critical assessments of Obamacare from health policy experts were not out there between 2007-2012. I know, because I blogged on every study and report on the predicted effects of the law that I could find. But the intellectually lazy journalism-major clowns at Politifact couldn’t be bothered to read those studies and reports.

Ford’s last witness says that she doesn’t remember a party with Kavanaugh

The obstruction of Kavanaugh is all about Roe v. Wade, and its going poorly
The blocking of Brett Kavanaugh is all about Roe v. Wade, and its going poorly

I am not happy with the Weekly Standard being so anti-Trump, but this article about the accusations by registered Democrat Christine Ford is interesting. She named four witnesses in her accusation of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, and all four have now refused to support her claims. Let’s take a look at an article from the Weekly Standard.

Excerpt:

Christine Blasey Ford has claimed that four other people attended a small gathering at which she was allegedly assaulted by Brett Kavanaugh. Three of those people, PJ Smyth, Mark Judge, and Kavanaugh, have already denied any recollection of attending such a party.

On Saturday night, Leland Ingham Keyser, a classmate of Ford’s at the all-girls school Holton-Arms and her final named witness, denied any recollection of attending a party with Brett Kavanaugh.

“Simply put, Ms. Keyser does not know Mr. Kavanaugh and she has no recollection of ever being at a party or gathering where he was present, with, or without, Dr. Ford,” lawyer Howard J. Walsh said in a statement sent to the Senate Judiciary Committee.

CNN reports that ” Keyser is a lifelong friend of Ford’s.”

Keyser previously coached golf at Georgetown University and is now executive producer of Bob Beckel’s podcast. Keyser is the ex-wife of Beckel, a former Democratic operative and commentator. A search on OpenSecrets.org reveals Keyser’s only political donation has been to former Democratic senator Byron Dorgan.

[…]All of Ford’s named witnesses of the party, both male and female, have now denied any recollection of attending such a party.

This story troubles me because I keep thinking about what it will be like for Christian conservatives going forward. Will they always be blocked from positions of influence with unsupported accusations of sexual misconduct?

With that in mind, I recommend that Christian mothers and fathers take steps to teach their children how to avoid false accusations made by secular leftists.

Here’s a good article by Megan Fox from PJ Media about that.

It says (in part):

Mothers of sons everywhere should be terrified by the constant destruction of men by duplicitous, lying women and an overzealous and political Senate confirmation process. All a scheming broad has to do these days is claim that your son touched her inappropriately more than two decades ago and she can derail his career. Worse, if your son ever happens to end up in front of the Senate, U.S. senators may drive his wife to suicide. The Senate confirmation hearing for Miguel Estrada, a Bush choice, was so stressful that Estrada’s wife had a miscarriage, developed a drinking problem, and overdosed on pills and died, according to The New Yorker.

She has a list of advice for parents who don’t want that to happen to their children.

One of them is this:

1. Take him to church and make sure the lessons stick

Make sure your son knows how to treat others, what his moral obligations to himself and his family are, and to follow God’s laws in regards to dating and marriage. Try to impart the importance of saving sex for marriage. What can happen to him if he fails to do that (poverty, child support, disease, death, false rape charge) isn’t worth it.

People sometimes ask me how it’s possible for me to treat conservative Christian women so well, and then write such harsh judgments of non-Christian women on my blog. Well, I think that Christian men should treat serious Christian women well, but not everyone who claims to be a Christian really is one. Regarding non-Christian leftist women, my advice is don’t talk to them, don’t do anything for them. There are plenty of women who take Christianity seriously who we can pay attention to and help instead. Youth and beauty are not a good measures of a woman’s character. Good women are chaste and sober and self-controlled. I don’t it’s possible to do a relationship with a woman who is drinking a lot, pursuing fun and thrills, etc.

More good advice:

3. Teach your son to assume he will one day have a position of high importance and encourage him to live accordingly

This is the Mike Pence school of behavior that will serve him well. Do not be alone with a woman who is not your wife if you are married. If you are not married, then try to have witnesses when dealing with women. Double-dating may soon be the only smart thing for a man to do when looking for a mate to protect himself from dangerous women who would like to hurt him. Teach him that anything he might say or do today could affect him and cost him a job 30 years from now. Show him what’s happening to Brett Kavanaugh. Teach him to choose his friends wisely, to stay sober, and to stay away from shenanigans that could come back and haunt him.

If you’re planning to have an influence, then you need to understand that there are secular leftist women out there who will use false accusations in order to stop you from making a difference. If your goal is to get on the Supreme Court and reverse Roe v. Wade, understand that according to Gallup polls, almost all young unmarried women want to keep abortion legal. There is a significant group of young unmarried women who think that they should prioritize drinking a lot, and having recreational sex with hot bad boys. They see taxpayer-funded contraceptives and taxpayer-funded abortions as part of their plan to have a lot of sex with hot bad boys. They will do anything to stop pro-life men from putting an end to their fun.

This third one is my favorite:

4. Don’t trust women

[…]Contrary to the saccharine platitude that “women don’t lie,” women lie all the time. They lie like crazy. The younger they are, the more they lie and scheme. It’s probably the rage of hormones and insecurity that contribute to it, but most women lie and scheme. Teach your sons to search out morally upstanding girls and to avoid drama queens. The religious ones are usually better. Stay very far away from party girls and girls who use drugs or drink underage. Those girls are momentarily fun, but ultimately trouble. Teach him to stay away from those girls.

Now, when wise people tell women to avoid rape by being careful how much they drink, and what they wear, and where they go for fun and parties, women tend to get mad and say “don’t tell me what to do, just let me do what I want, and tell men not to rape”. Men, if you think that you should be able to drink what you want, wear what you want, and go wherever you want seeking pleasure, you are mistaken. The costs to you if you get slapped with a false accusation or a false paternity suit or a frivolous divorce will be disastrous. You need to take responsibility for your own decisions, and that means having an accurate view of how women really are, so that you know how to tell the sheep from the goats. All women are not the same inside, and inside is where it really matters – especially at a time like this. Men need to avoid women who are let by their feelings, and prefer women who do the right thing when they don’t feel like it.

My previous post reviewed what studies say about whether accusations of rape and sexual assault are likely to be true.

Why wasn’t Hillary Clinton indicted for her private e-mail server?

Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama
Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama

Andy McCarthy writes about it at National Review. McCarthy is a former assistant U.S. attorney, and that he led the 1995 prosecution of the World Trade Center bombers, as well as prosecuting other prominent terrorism cases. So, he’s familiar with the law, and familiar with national security. The National Review is one of the most prestigious conservative publications.

Excerpt:

From the first, these columns have argued that the whitewash of the Hillary Clinton–emails caper was President Barack Obama’s call — not the FBI’s, and not the Justice Department’s. […]The decision was inevitable. Obama, using a pseudonymous email account, had repeatedly communicated with Secretary Clinton over her private, non-secure email account.

These emails must have involved some classified information, given the nature of consultations between presidents and secretaries of state, the broad outlines of Obama’s own executive order defining classified intelligence (see EO 13526, section 1.4), and the fact that the Obama administration adamantly refused to disclose the Clinton–Obama emails. If classified information was mishandled, it was necessarily mishandled on both ends of these email exchanges.

If Clinton had been charged, Obama’s culpable involvement would have been patent. In any prosecution of Clinton, the Clinton–Obama emails would have been in the spotlight. For the prosecution, they would be more proof of willful (or, if you prefer, grossly negligent) mishandling of intelligence. More significantly, for Clinton’s defense, they would show that Obama was complicit in Clinton’s conduct yet faced no criminal charges.

That is why such an indictment of Hillary Clinton was never going to happen.

He explains how we know that Obama knew about the Clinton private, unsecure, bathroom closet e-mail server:

As his counselors grappled with how to address his own involvement in Clinton’s misconduct, Obama deceptively told CBS News in a March 7 interview that he had found out about Clinton’s use of personal email to conduct State Department business “the same time everybody else learned it through news reports.” Perhaps he was confident that, because he had used an alias in communicating with Clinton, his emails to and from her — estimated to number around 20 — would remain undiscovered.

His and Clinton’s advisers were not so confident. Right after the interview aired, Clinton campaign secretary Josh Scherwin emailed Jennifer Palmieri and other senior campaign staffers, stating: “Jen you probably have more on this but it looks like POTUS just said he found out HRC was using her personal email when he saw it on the news.”

Scherwin’s alert was forwarded to Mills. Shortly afterwards, an agitated Mills emailed Podesta: “We need to clean this up — he has emails from her — they do not say state.gov.” (That is, Obama had emails from Clinton, which he had to know were from a private account since her address did not end in “@state.gov” as State Department emails do.)

They needed to “clean this up”.

Just to reiterate, there is only one reason why someone has a private e-mail server, and that is to escape the record-keeping requirements of their employer. If all your e-mails are stored on your private, unsecure, bathroom closet server, then you can just delete them when you want, and your employer will never know about them. And then if you’ve been pedaling the foreign policy of the United States for donations to your “foundation”, then no one will ever find out.

This could not be allowed to be linked back to Obama, and so it was not allowed to be linked back to Obama.

McCarthy explains:

In April 2016, in another nationally televised interview, Obama made clear that he did not want Clinton to be indicted. His rationale was a legally frivolous straw man: Clinton had not intended to harm national security. This was not an element of the felony offenses she had committed; nor was it in dispute. No matter: Obama’s analysis was the stated view of the chief executive. If, as was sure to happen, his subordinates in the executive law-enforcement agencies conformed their decisions to his stated view, there would be no prosecution.

Within a few weeks, even though the investigation was ostensibly still underway and over a dozen key witnesses — including Clinton herself — had not yet been interviewed, the FBI began drafting Comey’s remarks that would close the investigation. There would be no prosecution.

On June 27, Lynch met with Clinton’s husband, former President Bill Clinton, on an out-of-the-way Arizona tarmac, where their security details arranged for both their planes to be parked.

Over the next few days, the FBI took pains to strike any reference to Obama’s emails with Mrs. Clinton from the statement in which Comey would effectively end the “matter” with no prosecution.

And remember, we have a second FBI scandal being investigated, now. We’re trying to figure out whether the FBI used the Trump-Russia dossier, which was funded by the Clinton campaign, in order to get FISA court warrants to conduct surveillance on Trump and Trump associates. Just a little extra help for their favored presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton. Again, if true – we’re still investigating.

I used to think that the worst thing the Obama administration did was the IRS persecution of conservative groups ahead of Obama’s re-election campaign in 2012. And now there’s this new scandal.  Now we’re finding out little by little what the Obama administration really did, but we’ll probably never know the whole truth.