Oct
17
2014

FAIR TV: ABC's Factcheck Fail, Chuck Todd's DQ, and Malala's Message

fairtv101714

ABC botches an easy ISIS factcheck, and NBC's Chuck Todd "disqualifies" a Senate candidate who gave an iffy response to a trivial question. Plus Malala Yousafzai wins the Nobel Peace Prize–but US media doesn't seem interested in her peace message.

Oct
14
2014

ISIS in Texas?! ABC Fails an Easy Factcheck

this-week-hunter2

ABC This Week mangles an easy fact check, after a Republican politician claims that ISIS fighters have been caught at the Texas border.

Nov
11
2013

60 Minutes and Benghazi: When a Hoax Sounds Like a Hoax

cbs-benghazi

Someone at CBS should have known the Benghazi story being peddled by their star witness didn't add up.

Sep
24
2013

David Gregory, Health Law Fact Injector

gregory-health

Meet the Press host David Gregory tried to take a different approach from his colleague Chuck Todd. Unfortunately, his attempted factcheck didn't really clarify much.

Apr
24
2013

Jon Lee Anderson Explains: Because I Said So

Jon Lee Anderson

New Yorker staff writer Jon Lee Anderson has a blog post on the magazine's website (4/23/13) addressing the controversy over his recent coverage of Venezuela (FAIR Blog, 4/17/13): At issue are sentences in three different pieces written in the course of a number of months—two on the New Yorker's website and one in the magazine.  Readers pointed out what they saw as factual errors in each. In two cases I agreed, and corrected the sentences; in the third I didn't, for reasons I'll explain. So you expect he's going to explain why he didn't agree that the third alleged factual […]

Apr
17
2013

Why We Need the New Yorker to Correct Its Error on Venezuelan Inequality

Jon Lee Anderson

The New Yorker is a magazine whose name is practically synonymous with factchecking–which makes you wonder how the glaring, major errors in the its recent coverage of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez got through.

Feb
14
2013

Is John Boehner a Labor Economist?

120801_john_boehner_ap_328

Republican leader John Boehner must have some expertise when it comes to labor economics. Either that, or the New York Times is allowing him to make misleading claims without being challenged.

Nov
09
2012

FAIR TV: Obama's 'Non-Mandate,' Final Factchecking Fail, Climate Science

This week on FAIR TV: How does Obama's "non-mandate" compare to Bush's 2004 "mandate"? Does corporate media factchecking need a reality check? And we look at how superstorm Sandy failed to generate talk about climate change on the Sunday shows. Please watch it–and share it with your friends.<!–preview-break–>

Nov
06
2012

Final Factcheck: Political Lying Perfectly Balanced

Washington Post fact checker Glenn Kessler had his last election piece in the Sunday edition of the paper (11/4/12)– and it made you glad there won't be any more. The article promised, in the headline at least, "The Best–or Worst?–Pinocchios of This Presidential Race." What it delivered was something else: Eight themes of lying and deception (like "Silliest Blooper" and "Worst Math Skills"), each with one example drawn from each side. In other words, lying was perfect balanced. And the piece closes with this bizarre attempt at "balance": Most complex subject for spinning–bipartisan effort The Obama administration's memo saying it […]

Oct
17
2012

Noise and Nonsense on Benghazi Attack

hofstra

Over the past few weeks of the presidential campaign we've been hearing a lot–maybe too much–about the September 11, 2012, attack on a U.S. diplomatic outpost in Benghazi, Libya, that killed four Americans, including Ambassador Christopher Stevens. It's been turned into a campaign issue by the Romney team, which has used the incident to charges that the Obama administration is unable to manage foreign affairs and so forth.  The intensity of the Republican pushback has made this into a major story. It was the lead issue in the vice presidential debate, and has been a regular subject on the Sunday […]

Oct
16
2012

CBS Factchecks Romney's Tax Plan: Maybe, Who Knows?

cbs-romney

Mitt Romney has a multi-trillion dollar tax cut plan that he says won't add to the deficit. How does that work? He won't say, other than to pledge that he'd close some loopholes and deductions, but that none of those would harm "middle-class" Americans. Analysts have argued that this is not mathematically possible. So how do you factcheck that? That was the task for CBS Evening News last night (10/15/12). And their answer seemed to boil down to: Well, maybe. CBS reporter Wyatt Andrews explained: "Romney argues that lower rates will stimulate the economy and he is emphatic the middle-class […]

Oct
05
2012

When Did Checking the Facts Become Taking a Candidate 'at His Word'?

cnn-foreman

Before the first presidential debate, CNN sent out a press release to promote the idea that they'd be doing factchecking of Barack Obama and Mitt Romney. It's kind of sad that this would be considered a novel enough idea to warrant a press release, but the actual factchecking was nothing you'd want to call attention to. Anchor Wolf Blitzer cued up the night's first "reality check" from correspondent John Berman, "on the president's claim that Mitt Romney wants a $5 trillion tax cut." And here comes Berman's factcheck: Now let's look at the facts here. Mitt Romney does propose across-the-board […]

Oct
03
2012

Time: Obama's Lies Are Worse Because They're More Accurate

v_600_cover_1015

In Time magazine's new cover story ("Blue Truth, Red Truth," 10/3/12),  Michael Scherer attempts to sort out the puzzle of campaign season factchecking. But while the cover promises to tell us which candidate is telling the truth, it mostly manages to capture some of the  corporate media's worst factchecking tropes. The article kicks off with a hefty helping of false balance–the tendency to see all problems as coming more or less equally from both sides. Obama complains about Romney's sustained, false claims that the White House is doing away with work requirements under welfare. Scherer notes this is false–and then […]