Saturday, September 1, 2012

Playing Fast And Loose With Fact Checking

I find it interesting that left-wing media outlets have anointed themselves as fair-and-balanced fact checking machines.

For example, Politifact Wisconsin literally ripped Paul Ryan's convention speech apart by fact checking what they thought were a bunch of lies.   But, when Politifact was, itself, checked, it was found that they were  owed quite a few Pinocchios of their own.  In one such fact check lie, PolitiFact said this about Ryan's recounting of the GM plant closure in Janesville Wisconsin:

Ryan said Obama broke his promise to keep a Wisconsin GM plant from closing. But we don't see evidence he explicitly made such a promise -- and more importantly, the Janesville plant shut down before he took office. We rate Ryan's statement False.
When it comes to promises, the real fact is that Obama visited the Janesville plant right after GM announced that it would probably have to go into bankruptcy.  Obama assured the workers by saying:
"...I believe that if our government is there to support you, and give you the assistance you need to re-tool and make this transition, that this plant will be here for another hundred years."
Now, PolitiFact is probably right in that the above words are not an "explicit" promise to keep the plant open for the next hundred years, but,  I'm quite sure those workers felt as if they were hearing a promise anyway.

PolitiFact is also wrong on the dates of the plant closure.  Only a portion of that plant's operations were shut down before this President took office.  The actual shuttering of all operations took place in late April of 2009; four months after he took office and 3 months after Obama put his car Czar, Steven Rattner, in charge of the GM bailout.  Further, GM's official announcement of the plant closing was that "Janesville was placed on standby capacity in May 2009" which means the plant could be reopened, although today, with GM sales sagging from last year, it hardly seems likely that it will reopen any time soon.

If Obama held true to what he said in Janesville in 2008, he and his car Czar had ample time in 2009 to save the  plant by having it retooled to make more profitable vehicles; or, at the very least, he or Rattner could have gone back to the plant and explained their error in thinking it would be saved for the next 100 years.  But, you see, Obama is a man of many promises and few results; and, the left-wing media is ever ready to hide the sad fact about his inability to get things done.

It just seems that if a liberal paper slaps the words "Fact Check" on something, they are sure you will assume that it must be true.   However, all too often the truth has been manipulated and the conclusions are just opinions being made by politically partisan media types.   

Politifact Wisconsin Analysis:

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