Thursday, January 26, 2012

Politifact

When is true not true ?

It isn't just private sector jobs growth. They also rate

"Right now, American oil production is the highest that it’s been in eight years." Mostly true. The post concludes

"Obama was correct when he said that "right now, American oil production is the highest that it’s been in eight years." We think he may have overstated his administration’s role in achieving that, but not wildly so. We rate the claim Mostly True."

To summarize "Obama was correct ... Mostly True."

Huh ?!?

I also disagree with this one

http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2012/jan/16/mitt-romney/mitt-romney-tweets-more-americans-have-lost-their-/

“more Americans have lost their jobs under Barack Obama than any president in modern history”
The alleged fact check.


Romney’s claim is accurate if you count from every president’s first day in office to his final day
...
we arrive at a ruling of Mostly False."

Wow. Mostly false ? The claim as stated and quoted is accurate. But it doesn't mean what Romney wants to think it means. So an "accurate" statement is "mostly false."

Fact checkers should check facts.

1 comment:

David Zwerdling said...

Regarding the Romney quote, it's mostly semantical. Paragraph 4 gets to the meat of the matter:

"First, we should mention that there is no useful statistic for "Americans (who) have lost their jobs" during a given time period."

So, if there's no measurement for that statistic, we can't really know it's true. So yeah, his statement was factually false. However, as you imply by interpreting it as "net jobs lost" that, I think was Romney's intent. Perhaps he didn't clarify to the point that it was factually knowable, but the site is mostly right in this particular, semantic, instance.

It's not a discrete, dichotomous fact, since that doesn't exist. So the whole "mostly" part of being false is that they've bent it to be knowable facts. Perhaps Romney should stick to things that we actually do know?