Monday, October 22, 2012

comment on Kessler

Glenn Kessler has been doing his job lately.  He has been calling Romney lies lies.
But he does feel the need for Ballance.  So in his latest he recalls giving the Obama campaign 4 Pinocchios for a claim about Romney and Bain which was supported by massive documentation.

I think on the particular issue of when Romney stopped managing Bain, Kessler fell for Romney lies and just won't admit he was wrong.  I also think he feels that he must Ballance his criticisms of Romney.  The reference to Bain and outsourcing has nothing whatever to do with the ostensible topic of the current article.

Kessler is also clearly wrong on the substance.  Also the June fact check which he brings up only for Ballance bases his decision on what "seems".  That is his word.  He couldn't have made it clearer that his so called fact checking is an expression of hunches and opinions.

I give Kessler 4 Posties for arrogant refusal to admit he is fallible, stubborness and Ballance (I know that the number of criticisms isn't clearly four but they seem roughly four in number to me).

I put my angry comment here where Kessler won't read it, because I don't want to irritate him.  It is clear that criticism angers him and I honestly hope that he will write an opinion column (you know on the op-ed pages where it belongs) about how Romney is amazingly dishonest.

my comment

You just won't let your stubborn insistence that official SEC documents don't matter go will you.  I had decided to forget about your Bain fact check gross error, but you have chosen to re-repeat it.  I quote from your 4 pinocchio fact check

..." the Obama campaign supplied reams of additional SEC documents regarding Romney’s *ownership* in Bain after he left for the Olympics, most of which we had examined previously when we first looked at this question. The campaign also supplied SEC documents showing that two of these companies, Modus and SMTC, as well as one called Stream International (a predecessor of Modus), earned money in part by helping other companies subcontract work overseas. Some of this business predated Romney’s departure from Bain, but thus far it *seems* a slim case for this particular ad."

(emphasis mine)

So you concede that the basic claim in the ad is accurate then give it 4 Pinocchios on the basis of "seems".  I recall my very first angry comment here.  It was related to the Obama campaign and Bain and your use of the word "seems."  You claim to be a fact checker.  You just can't use the word "seems".  If you don't know, do more research.  Your 4 Pinocchios for Obama are, in your own word, an expression of opinion.  I think fact checking is very important.  I suggest you consider that it might be and stop writing about what "seems".

I also note your pathetically totally utterly dishonest use of the word "ownership."  Romney's continued ownership of Bain when he was in Utah for the Olimpics has never been contested.  The issue on which you incorrrectly asserted that the Obama campaign had made a false claim (making the error because you didn't check publicly available documents) was whether he was a manager..  The SEC documents list him as CEO and President.  They constitute proof that he was a manager when you said he wasn't, that the Romney campaign lied and you fell for their lie.

You decided that your hunches count for more than official documents by citing an anonymous legal source.  That was a plain violation of Washington Post policy.  You did not explain why you granted anonymity.  I can't imagine a justification.  I think that you must name your source.  I strongly suspect that you didn't, because the source is obviously grossly biased in the direction pleasing to you, because you just won't admit your error.

You asked the Romney campaign if Romney attended board meetings (as sole shareholder and chairman of the board at the time. when they refused to answer (tacitly conceeding that he had)  you said that moving forward your writing on the matter would be different as you would consider claims on a "case by case basis".  The June fact check which you, not I, brought up proves that, after you were forced to admit you were totally wrong, you went right back to the same claims from pure stubborness.

Everyone makes mistakes.  Your refusal to accept that you do to threatens your standing as a fact checker.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I got into an extended debate with Kessler during the 2004 election and it became very clear that Kessler is simply dishonest.

The idea that that guy is a "fact checker" is laughable.