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Thursday, March 20, 2008

Fact Check Check

I have been ignoring the Washington Post Factcheck column written by Michael Dobbs.

My bad. He fact checked McCain on al Qaeda and Iran. He notes that McCain is full of it. He also notes that the McCain campaign (which seems to have switched from saying that McCain's claim was a slip of the tongue which he corrected immediately to saying it is true) edited out the key part of a document which they presented as proving McCain's claim (the key part was essentially saying the opposite of McCain's claim).

Good job. Still Dobbs could do better. For one things he refers to "the Sunni-Shiite ethnic divide" it is not an ethnic divide, it is a sectarian divide (there is an ethnic difference between McCain and Obama there is a sectarian difference between McCain and Lieberman. These are not obscure words).

More importantly Dobbs does not address McCain's claim that he mispoke and quickly corrected himself. He does provide the evidence which proves that it is a lie -- he notes that McCain made the same claim on two successive days. However, he doesn't mention at all the fact that McCain claimed that he misspoke. That is to say, he let a blatant demonstrable lie pass in his "fact check".

The rule appears to be that McCain is allowed to lie, then take the lie back, and no decent journalist will mention it.

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