Factless Facts

After nearly a week of hard and grueling work covering the Republican convention, the fact checkers can take a well-deserved weekend off.

In fact, they just as well take the rest of the year off, and maybe never come back.

Why? Because Republicans have decided Mittens and Paul, after all, are entitled to their own set of facts, facts that are beyond checking by journalists, or anyone else who doesn’t share an enthusiasm for, well, lying.

As Media Matters noted, the truth-detectors are being shot, one by one, by Romney surrogates and the campaign’s rather extensive public relations department, also known as conservative media:

♦ Romney pollster Neil Newhouse:

We’re not going let our campaign be dictated by fact-checkers.”

♦ Rush Limbaugh:

Within five minutes, the drive-by media was on a mission to try to prove that Paul Ryan had lied. And they got their bogus fact-checkers up and in gear.”

♦ John Nolte of Breitbart:

For four long years, I’ve waited for these disgracefully partisan left-wing fact checkers to implode, and this morning and last night it finally happened.”

♦ And another piece of wisdom from Nolte:

This isn’t journalism; this is extortion. And “lie” is nothing more than the new word the corrupt media uses to describe any and all effective attacks launched against Their Precious One.”

♦ Jon Scott of Fox “News”:

…a rousing speech from Paul Ryan gets folks at the convention all fired up. But there’s also been some criticism of the speech. Some media outlets suggesting he got some of his facts wrong. Is that fair?

♦ National Review:

The website PolitiFact is going to be truth-squadding the Republican convention speakers this week, delivering verdicts on which claims are “mostly true” and which deserve a “pants on fire” rating. Our advice: Pay no attention to those ratings. PolitiFact can’t be trusted to get the story right.”

♦ Erick Erickson of Red State:

The media’s fact checkers are propped up as arbiters of truth when they just still promote the media’s own bullcrap, just this time with a “truth” label stuck to it.”

So, the Romney campaign will not be “dictated by fact-checkers,” and thus by facts, because fact-checkers are “bogus,” “left-wing,” “corrupt,” “unfair,” “untrustworthy” and promoters of their own “bullcrap,” whatever that means.

The result of this all-out offensive against fact-based journalism will, of course, have an effect. It will, as it always does, make mainstream journalists,

a) think twice before writing or broadcasting a story claiming Republicans got their facts wrong, and/or

b) make those journalists play the “both sides do it” game and hand Democrats just as many Pinocchios as they give Republicans, thereby making it safe for Romney-Ryan to keep on lyin’.

And that is the reason for the offensive.

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1 Comment

  1. Edward Robinson

     /  August 31, 2012

    So, Duane —
    I offer this suggestion once again in the innocent belief that if we can’t get honest information to the public during election season, big money and pure corruption will doom the country and the people who comprise it.
    News groups offering up lies would be penalized with fines: $500,000 per lie in each market where it airs, each time it airs. One Faux News lie in 5 markets in each of 5 battleground states broadcast 5 times in each market: 125 x $500,000 = $61,500,000.00. Given the fact that this is equal to about 5 minutes of Faux broadcast time — well, they’d be “outa bidness” in a week.
    As for candidates — I suggested a sliding scale of vote forfeiture per per district (or per precinct if you’d prefer) with a rider carrying those penalties into the next election when the candidate got into less-than-zero territory, ensuring no Republicans would ever hold office again in this century.

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