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Saturday, April 09, 2011

Without notably rare exceptions, my efforts to start internet memes have fallen flat.

But this is just too wonderful to resist.

Quote of the day "his remark was not intended to be a factual statement,"

So who is he and what was his remark ?

Richard Nixon "I am not a crook."

George Bush "Nothing has changed, by the way. When we're talking about chasing down terrorists, we're talking about getting a court order before we do so."

Megan McArdle "Such is blogging."

No in fact he was Arizona senator Jon Kyl

KYL: Everybody goes to clinics, to doctors, to hospitals, so on. Some people go to Planned Parenthood. But you don’t have to go to Planned Parenthood to get your cholesterol or your blood pressure checked. If you want an abortion, you go to Planned Parenthood, and that’s well over 90 percent of what Planned Parenthood does.

His office's full explanation

LEMON: We did call his office trying to ask what he was talking about there. And I just want to give it you verbatim here. It says, ‘his remark was not intended to be a factual statement, but rather to illustrate that Planned Parenthood, a organization that receives millions of dollars in taxpayer funding, does subsidize abortions.’

That is to say that 90 = 0 so more than zero is "well over 90 percent." The office is also ignorant. Planned Parenthood performs abortions. It doesn't subsidize them.

I think we can all agree that if a statement including "well over 90 percent" was not meant to be "a factual statement" then it was a lie. I mean I know people sometimes lie and say things which they don't intend to be factual, but you aren't supposed to say so.

By the way, I don't think that Kyl lied. I think his statement was intended to be factual and that he believed that well over 90 percent of what Planned Parenthood does is perform abortions. This means that I think the more recent statement from his office was a lie. Evidently Kyl's aids would rather lie than admit that he had an incorrect belief. Also, of course, they didn't mean to say he lied. They meant that quantitative claims aren't claims of fact unless they want them to be claims of fact -- that "90 percent" is just a number and a word, both said because they sound good, and, of course, you can't expect a red blooded American to use Arabic numbers correctly.

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