Patterico's Pontifications

9/9/2008

FactCheck.org Corrects a Few Smears About Palin

Filed under: 2008 Election — Patterico @ 12:37 am



Via Allahpundit comes a link to a Factcheck.org piece debunking a select handful of the smears that lefties have invented about Sarah Palin. Factcheck.org promises more; as Allah says: “Such is the volume of dirt that they can’t scrub it all at one sitting.” Here are the bullet points:

* Palin did not cut funding for special needs education in Alaska by 62 percent. She didn’t cut it at all. In fact, she tripled per-pupil funding over just three years.

* She did not demand that books be banned from the Wasilla library. Some of the books on a widely circulated list were not even in print at the time. The librarian has said Palin asked a “What if?” question, but the librarian continued in her job through most of Palin’s first term.

* She was never a member of the Alaskan Independence Party, a group that wants Alaskans to vote on whether they wish to secede from the United States. She’s been registered as a Republican since May 1982.

* Palin never endorsed or supported Pat Buchanan for president. She once wore a Buchanan button as a “courtesy” when he visited Wasilla, but shortly afterward she was appointed to co-chair of the campaign of Steve Forbes in the state.

* Palin has not pushed for teaching creationism in Alaska’s schools. She has said that students should be allowed to “debate both sides” of the evolution question, but she also said creationism “doesn’t have to be part of the curriculum.”

Much of this will be familiar to readers of sites like this one, Hot Air, and Beldar. Still, this debunking comes with the imprimatur of FactCheck.org, rather than those untrustworthy wingnut blogs. It deserves distribution far and wide. There’s a reason God Bill Gates fixed things so you can send links to every person in your address book. This is it.

P.S. I hit the creationism meme yesterday morning, in a post that also debunked the smear that Palin has supported “abstinence-only” education. Someone tell this cretin that the latter claim is false.

32 Responses to “FactCheck.org Corrects a Few Smears About Palin”

  1. Someone should also force the JAR’s jharp’s Peter’s Oiram’s, i like america’s, and others to read the FactCheck piece. Not that it will keep them from repeating the same old lies, but at least they will be doing it from a position of knowing that they are lying.

    Icy Truth (1af1be)

  2. A gift for you Icy straight from Factcheck:

    * Palin may have said “Thanks, but no thanks” on the Bridge to Nowhere, though not until Congress had pretty much killed it already. But that was a sharp turnaround from the position she took during her gubernatorial campaign, and the town where she was mayor received lots of earmarks during her tenure.

    * Palin’s accusation that Obama hasn’t authored “a single major law or even a reform” in the U.S. Senate or the Illinois Senate is simply not a fair assessment. Obama has helped push through major ethics reforms in both bodies, for example.

    * The Alaska governor avoided some of McCain’s false claims about Obama’s tax program – but her attacks still failed to give the whole story.

    * Giuliani distorted the time line and substance of Obama’s statements about the conflict between Russia and Georgia. In fact, there was much less difference between his statements and those of McCain than Giuliani would have had us believe.

    * Giuliani also said McCain had been a fighter pilot. Actually, McCain’s plane was the A-4 Skyhawk, a small bomber. It was the only plane he trained in or flew in combat, according to McCain’s own memoir.

    * Finally, Huckabee told conventioneers and TV viewers that Palin got more votes when she ran for mayor of Wasilla than Biden did running for president. Not even close. The tally: Biden, 79,754, despite withdrawing from the race after the Iowa caucuses. Palin, 909 in her 1999 race, 651 in 1996.

    Lies, lies and more slimy sleazy repulsive desperate lies and smears.

    Peter (e70d1c)

  3. FactCheck.com is a blog, and it has a real bias. Their claims are no better than any, and their calims are, imo, always suspect.

    A good liar tells a hundred truths so as to slip in one poison lie.

    bvw (5a1c9f)

  4. FactCheck.com is a blog, like any otehr blog, and it has a real bias. Their claims are no better than any, and their claims are, imo, always suspect.

    A good liar tells a hundred truths so as to slip in one poison lie.

    bvw (5a1c9f)

  5. “A good liar tells a hundred truths so as to slip in one poison lie.”

    And a poor liar just bypasses the hundred truths to make a false point.

    tmac (86debe)

  6. While this blog has preview before post, it happens that it was “below the fold” on screen as I was typing. That’s why the typos and double post above.

    Why take the word of any? In life there are not any neutral parties, for evey sentient being has an opinion, there are no observations made of the next hill over until one has his own hill to stand on.

    There are only those with a proven history of being truthful and conscientious. What is FactCheck’s history, that it should be trusted before other sources?

    It is not a long history. And me, I look to the writing. The use of emotion and adjectives and adverbs, voice and tone. Those tell a tale of a strong bias at FactCheck.

    And FactCheck is a blog. Not even a forum!

    Thus ideas and truths do not get hammered out on it. They do not wrestle out the truth.

    Why is it run? What is the motive for it?

    What is the value of free advice?

    A viper hangs out hidden in the woven weave of a pretty reed basket, to bite the hand of the unwary. Why chose to be unwary when reaching into a basket found along the road?

    bvw (5a1c9f)

  7. So refute the debunking of the myths about Palin, bvw.

    We’ll wait patiently here while you do.

    ** fingers tapping **

    SPQR (26be8b)

  8. SPQR, is their some short pier nearby that you can take a long walk on your hands down? That would be great exercise for your nervous fingers! And you’d get a bath too!

    What to say about the Palin rumors? I think that another blog — NOT “FactCheck.com” — does a much better job, and is not some me-too trying to grab some street-cred like FactCheck.

    That blog is:
    http://explorations.chasrmartin.com/2008/09/06/palin-rumors/

    bvw (5a1c9f)

  9. Yeah… that was linked here a few days ago… “Counting Rumors” was the title…

    Scott Jacobs (a1c284)

  10. And if you’re linking that list, why are you upset about FactCheck saying basicly the exact same thing?

    Scott Jacobs (a1c284)

  11. Because, Scott Jacobs, (1) I do not trust FactCheck.com, (2) I like to give credit to where credit is due — the Explorations blog has been on this longer and more thoroughly, and (3) why put any news source or blog on a pedestal of unquestionable authority? Where does the desire to have such a foolish thing of vain hope come from?

    bvw (5a1c9f)

  12. “Facts are stubborn things.” – John Adams

    Dmac (e639cc)

  13. From Fact Check

    “It’s true that Palin did raise the issue [of removing books] with Mary Ellen Emmons, Wasilla’s librarian, on at least two occasions. Emmons flatly stated her opposition both times. But, as the Mat-Su Valley Frontiersman (Wasilla’s local paper) reported at the time, Palin asked general questions about what Emmons would say if Palin requested that a book be banned. According to Emmons, Palin “was asking me how I would deal with her saying a book can’t be in the library.” Emmons reported that Palin pressed the issue, asking whether Emmons’ position would change if residents were picketing the library. Wasilla resident Anne Kilkenny, who was at the meeting, corroborates Emmons’ story, telling the Chicago Tribune that “Sarah said to Mary Ellen, ‘What would your response be if I asked you to remove some books from the collection?’ Palin characterized the exchange differently

    So reassuring.
    Fact Check

    Palin was never a member of the Alaskan Independence Party – which calls for a vote on whether Alaska should secede from the union or remain a state – despite mistaken reports to the contrary. But her husband was a member for years, and she attended at least one party convention, as mayor of the town in which it was held.

    I have no problem with anyone debunking rumors, but I have a problem with elision and evasion.

    The founder of the Alaska Independence Party — a group that has been courted over the years by Sarah Palin, and one her husband was a member of for roughly seven years — once professed his “hatred for the American government” and cursed the American flag as a “damn flag.”

    That description read and it still holds. And if you’re going to argue wioth me read the link first.
    On another thread when I posted that someone asked “so what?”
    Jeremiah Wright. Goose, meet Gander.

    “he has said that students should be allowed to “debate both sides” of the evolution question,”

    Does one and one equal twp? Questions persist.

    JAR (ab000b)

  14. “Does one and one equal twp

    Allow me laugh at that before anyone else does.

    JAR (ab000b)

  15. Typical white person

    Why must the Left lie and make false comparisons to Wright?

    JD (5f0e11)

  16. bvw – you need to get your facts right, before you spew off bullshit, and repeat twice.

    Factcheck.org is NOT a blog… its the website project of the LEFT LEANING Annenberg Public Policy Center and its funded by the LEFT LEANING Annenberg Foundation.

    It’s bias therefore, would lean left and as such any claims about Palin would more likely substantiate the bullshit being put forward by Daily Kooks…er Kos. Not repudiate it.

    Not to mention the AP and LA Times both huge left leaning democrat supporting media outlets substantiate the truths presented by Factcheck.org.

    DangerGirl (4d74f9)

  17. References at the link

    “The McCain camp has made her signature issue shutting down the Bridge to Nowhere. But as The New Republic put it today that’s just “a naked lie.” And pretty much the same thing has been written today in Newsweek, the Washington Post, the AP, the Wall Street Journal. Yesterday even Fox’s Chris Wallace called out Rick Davis on it. (Do send more examples when you find them.)

    On earmarks she’s an even bigger crock. On the trail with McCain they’re telling everyone that she’s some kind of earmark slayer when actually, when she was mayor and governor, in both offices, she requested and got more earmarks than virtually any city or state in the country.”

    JAR (ab000b)

  18. And TNR is such a bastion of factual reporting…

    *cough*Beauchamp*cough*

    Scott Jacobs (a1c284)

  19. JAR, I don’t mean to be harsh here, but there is a boomerang principle at play here:

    Step One: Go on a tear about Palin taking earmarks.
    Step Two: The situation is shown to be complex, so people start looking into it.
    Step Three: They discover that McCain has never submitted a bill with earmarks, and is one of the staunchest opponents of that kind of politics.
    Step Four: Obama is quite the earmark King, even with his very short tenure in the Senate. How many dollars, fellow posters? I believe is nearly three quarters of a billion dollars in earmarks.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/03/14/us/politics/14campaign.html?fta=y

    Including a million dollar earmark for…wait for it…the hospital where his wife works.

    Now, it is true that Obama has not asked for any earmarks in 2009. Maybe THAT is Hope&Change?

    http://www.cnn.com/2008/POLITICS/04/15/obama.earmarks/index.html

    So all you are doing is reminding people that Obama’s claims of change are just words, and that he is a Chicago machine pol hack.

    Can’t the Left see that? They believe that Obama is so very cool and hip that he can criticize people about things that Obama has done himself!

    Eric Blair (36c1a9)

  20. DangerGirl, why do you say factcheck.com is not a blog? Is the word “blog” your own intellectual property? And being so, I’d assume that you do own plenty of bullshit, since you throw it up quickly. You might try reading a bit further before reaching your hand into that bucket and tossing it up.

    FactCheck.com is a blog, as much as many blogs.

    bvw (5a1c9f)

  21. *cough* Newsweek,*cough* the Washington Post*cough* the AP*cough* the Wall Street Journal.*cough* Yesterday even Fox’s *cough* Chris Wallace *cough*

    But as long as you mentioned it Scott,

    A U.S. Army sergeant outed as a murderer in today’s NYT seems to be the same one that led the unit involved in last years New Republic / Beauchamp controversy. Then he denied atrocities Beauchamp reported on.
    …”In March or April 2007, three noncommissioned United States Army officers, including a first sergeant, a platoon sergeant and a senior medic, killed four Iraqi prisoners with pistol shots to the head as the men stood handcuffed and blindfolded beside a Baghdad canal, two of the soldiers said in sworn statements.
    …After the killings, the first sergeant — the senior noncommissioned officer of his Army company — told the other two to remove the men’s bloody blindfolds and plastic handcuffs, according to the statements made to Army investigators, which were obtained by The New York Times.”

    JAR (ab000b)

  22. JAR,

    There are 172,000 books published each year in the US. How many of those end up on library shelves of small towns? And as time goes on, and books age, and shelves fill up in a small library — what happens to those books? Who makes the decisions?

    It is the job of the librarian to represent the community’s interest in running a library. Most decisions are made by the librarian as to which FEW books of those 172000 will be admitted to the shelves, and which books in inventory on the shelves shall be removed. Yet the decision is not just hers alone — she acts an an expert professional (or volunteer) but not with arbitrary authority. It is to the library board, or I guess, in Wasilla its town council, to have oversight over the library operation and the judgment of the librarian. If a town council says to add such-and-such a book, or to remove such-and-such book it is their authority and even a duty at times to do so. It is proper and needed exercise of their duty.

    bvw (5a1c9f)

  23. The Bridge isn’t her signature issue.

    It’s “Drill baby Drill!”

    Like Barack says: “What were the Republicans hollerin’, ‘drill baby drill’? What kind of slogan is that?! They were getting all excited about drilling!”

    Al (b624ac)

  24. JAR – I am not sure I understand your “arguement”. Are you saying that the Beauchamp stories were true because someone from one of the units committed a crime?

    JD (3f9019)

  25. “Are you saying that the Beauchamp stories were true because someone from one of the units committed a crime?”
    No I’m simply pointing out that one of the main speakers against Beauchamp has been found to be a murderer.
    Unreliable witness?

    JAR (ab000b)

  26. One of the main speakers against Beauchamp. You are kidding, right?

    JD (3f9019)

  27. JAR-JAR Stinks wrote, as s/he usually does:

    And if you’re going to argue wioth me read the link first.

    Which is something I did Saturday afternoon when JAR linked the Washington Post story, “Palin Slashed Funding For Teen Moms,” the aggressively misleading and factually false report by Post writer Paul Kane. I ripped it to shreds, before I even knew that there were already other writers and bloggers who had totally decimated the outrageous allegations and implications.

    JAR’s reaction? At first, dead silence. Finally, yesterday, s/he tried to Clinton his/her way out of it by pointing out s/he knew the story was suspect, which STILL didn’t stop him/her from continuing to repeat the false narrative, the half-truths, and the whole lies. When I swatted his/her lame response back in his/her lying face, s/he posted the following:

    I’d rather discuss the issues.
    I’m done with this one.

    Whatta wuss.

    You Donkey Party people have only one real issue against Palin: The facts about the bridge. Outside of that, you’ve got nothing going but sexism, elitism, hypocrisy, faux outrage, religious bigotry, jealousy, seething hatred, or any combination of those ingredients.

    Under normal circumstances, I would be critical of the McCain camp keeping a lid on Palin interviews over the weekend. However, I’ve never in my life seen such a series of thinly-disguised character assassination attempts on an undeserving target. (The most recent example I can think of is 1992, when the international media turned their guns on skater Nancy Kerrigan over an offhand remark.)

    I think to prepare Palin for her first press conference, the McCain camp should put her in a hazmat suit, rattle the cages in the monkey house at the Bronx Zoo, and get her used to dodging you-know-what. If they take that advice, JAR, drink your Metamucil and join the fun. Oo-Oo-Ah-Ah!

    L.N. Smithee (a0b21b)

  28. Read the link
    “My soldiers conduct is consistently honorable. […] Again, this young man [Beauchamp] has a vivid imagination and I promise you that this by no means reflects the truth of what is happening here. I’m currently serving with the best America has to offer. […]
    1SG Hatley”

    “Is the First Sgt. John E. Hatley who led Beauchamp’s unit the same one that murdered handcuffed prisoners?”

    The answer appears to be: Yes.

    JAR (08f6d2)

  29. Factcheck.org is not a blog. Lol. Why make that assertion? Patterico.com is a blog. To read more about factcheck.org, and NOT about factcheck.com

    http://www.factcheck.org/about/

    G (722480)

  30. What is a blog G? FactCheck.whatever — dot org, sure, sure — is a running dissection and commentary of events just like this blog. It is posted up in HTML on the Internet and responds to HTTP just like this blog. It is a mix of opinion and fact just like this blog. The pages are subject to editing and pulling and change from one moment to the next just like this blog.

    Here, I’ll ask a the same question a different way: Why isn’t FactCheck.org a blog?

    Another question, different: Is FactCheck.org considered a more authoritative source than any posting by Patterico or even by any poster posting? Why?

    With regards blogging I prefer Free Republic, and other long running forums with self-search and archiving. Ideally ideas get hammered out better there. Here — on any blog, not just here — too much framing, too much attempting to create a fenced-in area in the big open range of ideas.

    Truth does not suffer ownership, claims of owning an idea are folly. The instance of an idea, the packaging, the delivery — that can be owned. But ideas are like the air. Un-ownable.

    bvw (5a1c9f)

  31. Hey he mentioned my name!

    … considering trolling ..

    passing…

    Look, regardless of the fact that I may lean left and mercilessly mock you hacks, I do love my country. And if Obama does lose (ain’t gonna happen, hacks), I’ll be a lot happier knowing Palin isn’t as bad as I thought originally

    OK there was some trolling in there after all

    i like america (f4c1e0)

  32. FActCheck.org used to be reliable, but its liberal bias has shown up dramatically in the last few years.

    Timmer (b51f9c)


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