The AP 'Fact Checks' Paul Ryan
6:13 PM, Aug 15, 2012 • By MARK HEMINGWAY
The Associated Press came out with a lengthy and extremely tendentious "fact check" regarding the selection of Paul Ryan as Mitt Romney's vice presidential running mate. I am on record as deploring the media fact checking phenomenon in pretty strong and detailed terms. And this fact check was so bad it made even my jaded toes curl.
Over at National Review, Ramesh Ponnuru beat me to the punch in critiquing the piece. Not surprisingly, he concludes it's a lot of exceedingly biased opinion masquerading as empiricism:
Read the whole thing—if you're familiar with Ponnuru you know that if there's one thing he's good at it, it's dismantling bad arguments. Of course, the "fact check" was so bad that for the sake of time and sanity, Ponnuru couldn't address every questionable thing in it. In particular, the extended and very subjective defense of the president's now infamous "you didn't build that" remarks was egregious. As was citing Mark Zandi and Moody's—known to frequently be an economic outlier, reliably providing very favorable numbers defending Democratic policy proposals—in defending the stimulus. And Ramesh didn't bother mentioning this part which really stuck in my craw:
Do we really want to argue over what the meaning of "specific" is here? If you can claim to "fact check" obviously debatable rhetorical assertions such as these, fact checking really has no meaning.
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