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A 1902 song gave rise to the tongue-twister, “How much wood would a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood?” “Could,” as opposed to “would,” was the appropriate word selection since the woodchuck cannot “chuck” wood. Taking editorial license with the verse and applying it to an emerging 21st century profession, the following is proffered: “How many facts could a fact-checker check if a fact-checker could check facts?” Again, “could” is appropriate since not all fact-checkers do what their title implies.
Article by Lt. Col. James Zumwalt from WND.
Numerous professions have names appropriately describing occupation: ministers “minister,” bakers “bake” and teachers “teach.” Therefore, when an institution such as social media engages “fact-checkers,” we assume their job is to verify that claims made are factual.
But today, the need arises to fact-check the fact-checkers as some use the title as a journalistic smokescreen to promote personal agendas, bending facts to fit when needed. For them, fact-checking involves spin artistry – portraying a claim according to their agenda rather than to facts. Facts are either buried or fuzzed up so as to make them less relevant.
Despite journalist assertions they strive to report fairly, today “it’s pretty much a fact that journalism is one of the most left-wing of all professions.” (Just look at how an NBC reporter covered for President Joe Biden while interviewing NASCAR event winner Brandon Brown Oct. 2 in Alabama: with the crowd clearly chanting “F*** Joe Biden,” she ridiculously told the television audience the crowd was chanting, “Let’s go Brandon.”) So it follows that liberal news sources beget liberal fact-checkers who rush to defend liberal voices. Their skills are in particular need with Biden whom they often have to rescue from incidents of buffoonery or falsification – a practice becoming more difficult with each word he utters.
An example of the former occurred on Aug. 10 when a clip of Biden was aired in which he said preventative measures for hurricanes included getting vaccinated early, seemingly as if to suggest vaccinations prevent hurricanes. Critics bombarded him before liberal fact-checkers rushed to clarify what he meant.
More on point is a tweet by Washington Post fact-checker Glenn Kessler. He gave notice his newspaper would not maintain a fact-checking database on Biden past his first 100 days in office. Such an announcement about a politician who has built his career by telling one falsehood after another – even forcing him to drop out of the 1988 presidential campaign for doing so – and, especially after lying to the American public he had never been advised by his military leaders to keep a military presence in Afghanistan contrary to their recent sworn testimony – strongly suggests the paper recognizes it can only go so far with its fact-checking defense of Biden before losing all credibility.
Liberal fact-checkers also look to falsely portray conservative voices as hypocritical. Supposedly non-partisan PolitiFact, which seeks to hold politicians accountable for their claims, challenged the statement by Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, “You didn’t see Republicans when we had control of the Senate try to rig the game. You didn’t see us try to pack the (Supreme) Court” from nine to 13 members as Democrats sought to do.
PolitiFact gave Cruz a “false” rating, claiming Republicans had rigged the game. However, to make the argument, PolitiFact resorted to leftist spinning, basing its argument on redefining the rules of the game for Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) nominations. It claimed Republican efforts blocking President Barack Obama’s nomination of Merrick Garland prior to the 2016 presidential election while supporting President Donald Trump’s nomination of Amy Coney Barrett prior to the 2020 presidential election represented “rigging the game.”
But, had PolitiFact been fair, it would have admitted rejecting or supporting SCOTUS nominees is in no way similar to seeking to create a majority by expanding the size of the high court. Additionally, Republican actions concerning both Garland and Barrett did not break the rules but followed them. A Senate responsible for giving or withholding SCOTUS approval was doing just that.
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One of WND’s regular commentators, John Stossel, has even been victimized by the sting of the liberal fact-checker’s non-factual whip.
Stossel had posted a video on Facebook reporting facts that suggested a bigger player in the recent California wildfires was probably government mismanagement as opposed to climate change. He went on to add, “Climate change has made things worse …” making it clear he was not dismissing global warming as a factor. Nonetheless, the fact-checker labeled Stossel’s government mismanagement claim as “misleading.”
Strangely, to support this, the fact-checker chose to link to another article it found misleading for claiming “Forest fires are caused by poor management. Not by climate change.” Although Stossel’s article acknowledged climate change was a factor while the linked article did not – the fact-checker determined its decision that the latter – by excluding climate change – was misleading was sufficient evidence to declare Stossel’s – which included climate change – misleading as well. Of additional note is that the fact-checker is a pro-climate change group called Climate Feedback.
Stossel was able to interview two of three scientists who allegedly provided feedback for the fact-checker. He learned neither had even seen his video. After they did review it, one scientist said it definitely was not misleading as it did not exclude climate change. Despite this admission, neither Climate Feedback nor Facebook would change their claim Stossel’s piece was misleading.
Stossel then posted a video addressing climate change myths in which three climate scientists argued we are not doomed because we can adapt to climate change and rising sea levels, challenging climate alarmists to debate them. None did.
Facebook slapped the video as being “partly false,” with only one reviewer agreeing to share why. His criticism only disputed the height of rising sea levels. Interestingly, while Facebook dinged Stossel for disagreeing that hurricanes had gotten stronger, this Facebook reviewer agreed with him.
In an interesting development, an illegal is under arrest now who is believed to have actually started the fire.
While Stossel fully recognizes Facebook, as a private company, can choose whether to provide him with a platform, he says it has no “legal right to knowingly and recklessly lie about what I say.” He adds, “That’s defamation.” To underscore this point, he has filed a lawsuit against Facebook.
While the meaning of “fact-checker” is obvious to the public, sadly a trusting public is largely oblivious to the fact some fact-checkers are not. Should one appear at your door this Halloween, undoubtedly, there is a liberal, unconcerned about truth, hiding behind the mask.
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