Alicia Howard
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Just the FACTS ma'am...2008 Presidential Election Debunking

I just posted this over at the Jet Li Forum but I'll repeat it here just in case I can reach some new people.  This website is the best of the best, and sets the record straight in this very crooked world of politics....

In this age of soundbites, both McCain and Obama try to persuade people to vote against the opposing candidate by "exposing" their true views, their faults.  No one talks about what he CAN do.  

A lot of the time those soundbites are filled with lies, exaggerations, and half-truths.  Since I don't watch TV except on-line, and listen to public radio and not commercial radio, I am not bombarded with these phony statements.  

But I do get emails from FACTCHECK.ORG, which is

QUOTE:a nonpartisan, nonprofit "consumer advocate" for voters that aims to reduce the level of deception and confusion in U.S. politics. We monitor the factual accuracy of what is said by major U.S.political players in the form of TV ads, debates, speeches, interviewsand news releases. Our goal is to apply the best practices of bothjournalism and scholarship, and to increase public knowledge andunderstanding.The Annenberg Political FactCheck is a project of the Annenberg Public Policy Center of theUniversity of Pennsylvania. The APPC was established by publisher andphilanthropist Walter Annenberg in 1994 to create a community ofscholars within the University of Pennsylvania that would addresspublic policy issues at the local, state and federal levels.

The APPC accepts NO fundingfrom business corporations, labor unions, political parties, lobbyingorganizations or individuals. It is funded primarily by the AnnenbergFoundation.

I don't know which campaign has been the biggest lying sack of doodoo, but I can guarantee you that the coming weeks will get uglier.  

If you hear something in the debates or in advertisements or literature which persuades you to vote for or against either candidate, check again.  See if what he or she said is the truth.  

I think this is a great service doing noble work.  Check it out at:   www.factcheck.org

You can also sign up for email alerts on the home page.  

Just as an example, here is an article on "THE WHOPPERS OF 2008"


Normallywe post a "Whoppers" compilation the week before Election Day. Thistime we've already seen such a large number of twisted facts,misleading claims and outright falsehoods that we are doing that now.

It's not just Sarah Palin's claim about killing the bridge project thatshe had supported until it became a national laughingstock and Congressturned against it. That's just the whopper that got the attention ofmany news organizations earlier this month. There have been lots ofothers.

McCain has made multiple false representations of Obama's taxproposals. Obama has made false claims about McCain's stance on SocialSecurity. Both McCain and Obama have traded some whoppers about theirenergy policies, about Iraq, and about Iran, and about supportingtroops.

For our full sampler of the campaign distortions we've seen so far,please read on to our Analysis section. There we provide summaries andlinks to extensive articles on each. This is a partial tally. We stillhave more than five weeks to go before Nov. 4.


Bothcandidates are flinging rather a lot of political poppycock, and someserious deceptions, too. We've gone after them in our regular articlesand also in our new feature,The FactCheck Wire. Here are the lowlights – thus far.McCain: Obama will raise your taxes.It'sa pretty standard Republican theme: "Democrat X favors higher taxes andwasteful spending." But the McCain-Palin campaign has repeatedly pushedthis line far beyond what the facts will support. Among the whoppers:that Sen. Barack Obama has voted to raise taxes on families earning aslittle as $32,000 per year, that Obama wants to tax your electricityand your heating oil, that he has voted for "higher" taxes 94 times,and that he will raise taxes for 23 million small-business owners. Eachof these claims is false. Sen. John McCain also claims Obama will raisetaxes on your investments, which is untrue for all but those at the topof the income scale.

Obama has not proposed new taxes for electricity or for home heatingoil. McCain likes to point to a budget resolution for which Obamavoted, which would have raised the marginal tax rate on a singleindividual earning $41,500 per year or a couple earning $83,000 peryear. But that isn't part of Obama's tax plan, which would raise rates(including capital gains and dividend rates) only for couples earningat least $250,000 per year, or singles earning $200,000 or more. Anyinvestments held in Individual Retirement Accounts, 401(k) plans orother tax-deferred retirement accounts would remain just that,tax-deferred. Nor would Obama's plans affect 23 million small-businessowners; most, in fact, would see a tax cut. At most, a few hundredthousand of the most affluent business owners would see rates go up.And those 94 votes for "higher" taxes? We count 23 that would not haveraised taxes at all, but were merely votes against tax cuts. Seven ofthem would have taxes for many. As for Obama's actual plan: The nonpartisan Tax PolicyCenter says that 81.3 percent of all American workers and familieswould see a tax cut.

Tax Tally Trickery  July 3

The $32,000 Question  July 8

McCain's Small-Business Bunk  July 14

More Tax Deceptions  August 12

A New Stitch in a Bad Pattern  September 2

There He Goes Again  September 18Obama: McCain will cut your Social Security.

Democrats aren't without a classic theme of their own:"Republican Y wants tocutSocial Security benefits for our seniors." John Kerry used something like that againstGeorgeW. Bush in 2004. It wasn't true then and it hasn't gotten any more truein the past four years. But that hasn't stopped Obama from claimingthat McCainwants to cut benefits in half.McCain did support Bush's Social Security plan. But that plan would not have cutbenefits at all. Everybody who gets a check now, or who is nearingretirement, would have remained in the current system. For youngerworkers who retire in the future, Bush proposed to slow the rate atwhich benefits grow – keeping pace with the rise of prices but not withthe faster rise in wages, as is now the case. Compared with whattoday's retirees get, that's a smaller increase, not a reduction.

Obama also claimed that if McCainhadhis way, "millions" who rely on Social Security would have seen theirinvestments disappearing in the recent stock market turmoil. Hereferred to "elderly women" at risk of poverty and said families wouldbe scrambling to support "grandmothers and grandfathers." Balderdash. TheBush plan, which McCain embraced, would nothave allowed anybody born before 1950 to have private accounts, sonobody retired on Social Security today could possibly be relying onprivate accounts for even a small portion of his or her benefit check.For younger workers, the accounts would have been voluntary anyway.

Scaring Seniors  September 19

Obama's Social Security Whopper  September 20And this is supposed to give us all "hope" and portend "change"?  Same old, same old.  

For the record, I was a Hillary supporter and now I'll vote for Obama/Biden, not totally enthusiastically but I will.  McCain/Palin scare the crap out of me.  

Have fun watching the VP debate tonight.  It should be really good television!  I guess it's on PBS, again, www.pbs.org.  Oh, I checked, it's on TV everywhere.  But I'll have to watch it online.

Whatever you do, please make sure you're registered and VOTE on November 4.  No one else can do it for you.  

Oh yeah, another couple of programs which also DEBUNK the bunk flung by both candidates, with an openly "liberal" slant are:

The Daily Show with Jon Stewart - you see stuff here you never see anywhere else!   http://www.thedailyshow.com/full ... ml?episodeId=186763

The Colbert Report - http://www.comedycentral.com/col ... ml?episodeId=186541

I'm sure a lot of you have seen these shows but they are essential viewing during the election cycle.  They make me laugh and shake my head at the same time.  These shows have great writers.  

Edit:  For those of you who are in other countries, non-US citizens, these shows are great to watch anyway.  But be warned, both shows use a lot of sarcasm and irony so may be tricky to appreciate if you don't understand American humor.  Just FYI, the star of The Colbert Report, Stephen Colbert, is "posing" as a Republican supporter but is clearly not.  So when he says "McCain is great" it is with a wink.  Enjoy!

9 年多 前 0 赞s  7 评论s  0 shares


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Thanks for bringing this out of the forum. very informative. I will go to factcheck.org for the facts.
9 年多 ago | flag as spam
Photo 35751
great stuff flagday, sometimes it's really hard to now where to go to get the facts - does Palin really want to ban books for instance or is that scaremongering. Now I know where to find out. Cheers Not that I am American but these elections have an impact internationally
9 年多 ago | flag as spam
Photo 29080
Election by default is so sad & that's what it's come to with Obama & McCain. I think there would have been a lot more enthusiasm & confidence if Hilary was a candidate. Who knows what would have happened if her campaign had gone differently. I didn't follow in depth, but it seemed a case of too little too late when she fired her campain manager & people seemed to finally 'get' it was her or the inexperienced Obama who would be the candidate.
9 年多 ago | flag as spam
Default avatar
As a Brit I think we get the sarcasm humor, so it will be fun for me too! I was a Hillary suporter, and now I want to see Obama win, but he was never my first choice, I just don't see anything in either candidate, just like the ones running for parliment here. It may be a 'hung' parliment this election, so few a voters these days.
9 年多 ago | flag as spam
Photo 197077
not really on anyone's side this election .. :(
9 年多 ago | flag as spam
Photo 98004
Sigh. If I hadn't fallen for you yet I would have now ... :-)
9 年多 ago | flag as spam
Photo 290347
nicely written facts flagday! now the real issue is ... Can we bail out failing systems when the root of the problem lies so much deeper? Last month, I had a chance to visit America's Busted Homes and this man left 30 piles of his own feces in the front lawn. Even if you have 2 bowel movements per day, that's 15 days of determination on leaving a pile for the neighborhood to see. Sadly enough, he used to have a job at LVS (Las Vegas Sands). He paid a small down payment to maximize his writeoff and with the downturn lost his shirt, lost his job and went nuts. Is it his fault? Is it the systems fault? What a mess ... we are in a major global tsunami. Our medicine used is to give out more credit to improve the goodwill and use taxpayer dollars to finance mistakes. There was a time when Enron situations resulted in imprisonment. Today, it is called bailout and too big to fail. Bottom line, can't afford any mistakes or else it is going to get really bad.
9 年多 ago | flag as spam


Think Globally, Act Locally.


May 4, 2005

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