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With so much biased news coverage and so much ‘fake news’, it is comforting to know that you can just turn to FactCheck.Org or Snopes.com and get the real truth about  almost anything you read or hear.

You might want to fact check the above paragraph.  If you believe it is true, you would be wise to avoid realtors with bridges on offer in Brooklyn.

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Both Snopes and Factcheck are dripping with bias, and, surprise, the bias is ‘progressive’.  I have not seen a single example of either ‘service’ steering you toward a conservative interpretation of the facts.  Both are as reliable as CNN or FoxNews at showing any issue in the brightest light for the side of the debate which they support.

So what should you do?  There is no simple answer that I have found.  You really need to seek out the original document.  This is what Snopes and FactCheck purport to do.  What they do in fact is act like critics.  Think of the film critic who does not like a certain director.  When viewing works from that director, the critic will carefully watch and study the work of the director who he does not like but always with an eye to find any flaw, any error or exaggeration.  He will then use this exaggeration or flaw to condemn the entire work, regardless how good it is otherwise.

A perfect example is the current debate about how aliens who have been apprehended crossing our borders illegally are treated when captured.  The Snopes fact check claim, “The widely debated practice of separating families at the border is mandated by Public Law 107-296, which was passed by Democrats in 2002.” (Here is a link to that page.) Snopes boldly claims that this is “False.”   It is meant to make you believe that what the Border Agents are doing is not legal and is directed by the Trump Administration, not by law.  Specifically, the progressives (like Snopes) want you to believe that Border Agents are acting outside the law,  separating families and tearing babies from the breasts of their mothers to deter others from trying to enter the U.S. illegally.

First, they word the question in such a narrow fashion that makes it very easy to label the claim as “False”.    By suggesting that a single law is the reason for the way Border Agents are deterring aliens, they obscure the fact that most law is the sum total of laws, regulations, orders and court interpretations of those laws (case law).  In this case, by excluding all but this one law, they make the problem seem very simple which it is not.  The detention of illegal border crossers is guided by no fewer than 3 federal statutes (in 1997, 2002, 2008), a number of lawsuits and both district and supreme court appeals (Flores Settlement Agreement, 1997, 9th Circuit, 2014, etc.)  which have modified those statutes.  So by asking if this single law is the reason for separating families, it is analogous to asking if the 14th Amendment forbids consideration of race when hiring a new employee.  It ignores all the law and court cases before and after the Emancipation Proclamation which speak to this issue.

Second, they sneak in the part about “…passed by Democrats in 2002.”  By limiting this to  a single law passed in 2002 (The Homeland Security Act), and, by suggesting it was done by Democrats, Snopes can call it false since the majority of those voting for the law were Republicans.  This, of course, ignores the fact that all but 8 Democrats in the Senate voted for the Bill.  To be fair, in the House, only 88 of the 295 votes for the Bill were from Democrats.  In any case, it could not have passed without the Democrats.  Did Democrats pass the bill?  No.  Could they have prevented passage? Easily.  Democrats had 50 members of the Senate plus one Independent who voted with them.  The Republicans had 49 members.  Had this been spun by someone biased toward the Republicans, they would have ‘fact checked’ and found that the law was passed by the Democrats since they controlled the Senate and final passage of a bill lies with the Senate.

FactCheck, like Snopes wants you to believe that they are independent, non-biased arbiters of truth.  They are not.  To treat them as such is as irresponsible as to believe everything that you read on the internet (except, of course, anything you read at Responsibility-Freedom Demands It).

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Conspiracy theorists will say that the FTC is paying back the mainstream media for all its one-sided ‘reporting’.  How better to help your friends in the media than to issue “guidelines” that require your competitors to jump through hoops that you are not required to negotiate?  What on earth am I talking about?

Monday, the FTC issued guidelines for disclosure requirements for product reviewers.  In short, the guidelines say that bloggers who receive free product to review it must disclose that fact.  A mainstream media ‘journalist’ need not reveal the free gift.  For a more complete article, go to: http://www.mediapost.com/publications/?fa=Articles.showArticle&art_aid=114860

honest_product_reviews_blogI am trying my best to understand the FTC’s conclusion that a gift would materially effect the impartiality of the blogger but not the ‘journalist’.  Can anyone explain the logic to me?  Oh, by the way, the FTC did conclude that if you buy a product or service, with your own money, and write a product review on line, you will not be considered to be providing an endorsement.  Whew.  I thought maybe the FTC was going to repeal the 1st amendment.

Sleeping on the Job

Mr. Obama promises that by further increasing the spending on his Recovery Plan that his Administration will “create or save” 600,000 jobs this summer.  The press dutifully reports this without so much as a “How do you count jobs saved, Mr. President?”  Fact is that no organization has come up with a way to count saved jobs.  The Labor Department has no measure.  Who is it that will confirm that this is not just a “feel-good lie” being foisted on us by the President?  

By the way, Mr. Obama claimed that his $787 Billion  Stimulus Plan had already “created or saved” over 150,000 jobs just since March.  Did anyone in the press ask for some background to that statistic?  Had Mr. Bush, or any Republican said anything that silly and indefensible, would the press have hounded him?  You bet.  Why not Mr. Obama?  Is he like “Global Warming”?   Is this too dangerous a political “fact” to challenge in front of our dumbed-down populous?  Does anyone wonder why the press is held in such low regard?

Here are some questions the press might want to ask Mr. Obama.  Put another way, here are some questions the press has avoided asking Mr.Obama.

1. Can you describe in detail how you come up with the figures you give us on “jobs saved”?  

2. Once the Stimulus funds are gone, what is your plan to keep all employed who have newly created temporary jobs (in make-work projects) funded by the Recovery Act?  

3. Will there be a need to dump another $787 billion into a similar ‘stimulus’ every 2 years?

4.  Do you have an exit strategy?  How do you get out from under the ownership of banks, automobile manufacturers, etc.?

If you are wondering why the press does not report on matters like this, or, you don’t trust that the press is willing to give you the whole story in fear it may hurt Mr. Obama, you are in good company.  The majority of Americans do not believe the media.

According to “the findings of a WE media Global Forum poll on media bias.  The poll, which surveyed 10,230 adults in the UK, U.S., Brazil, Egypt, Germany, India, Indonesia, Nigeria, Russia, and South Korea, finds that, as RedState writes “Americans gave their own media the worst score in the world on the question concerning “Reports all sides of story.” A whopping 69% of Americans disagreed that the media reports all sides. Only the UK (at 64%) comes close to harboring this sentiment.”  Overall, among the nations polled, Americans turn out to be the most skeptical about the accuracy and fairness of their media organizations

Even the liberal thinkprogress blog agrees that  the media is not to be trusted.  

Is the press just sleeping or is it sleeping with the President?

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