To Be Totally Fair to Everyone, We're Complete Idiots

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

To Be Totally Fair to Everyone, We're Complete Idiots

Factcheck, in its desire to be the beacon of truth in Washington's cesspool of lies, takes a look at some recent interest group ads on judicial nominees and concludes, shockingly, that "both sides twist facts."

First, they examine ads run by Progress for America supporting Priscilla Owen and Janice Rogers Brown
[W]e find that the ad also falsely implies that three big Texas newspapers endorsed one of Bush's choices for federal appeals court judge.

The ad says Priscilla Owen is "endorsed by major newspapers." On screen it shows headlines from the Houston Chronicle, Dallas Morning News and San Antonio Express-News. But that gives the false impression that they are endorsing her now.

Those newspapers did endorse Owen several years ago when she was running for election to the Texas State Supreme Court. But they haven't endorsed her for the job on the Fifth US Circuit Court of Appeals to which President Bush has now appointed her.

One of those newspapers was highly critical of Owen in 2003 after Bush nominated her to the federal appeals court, and another urged the President to make appointments that are more moderate than Owen in order to avoid "gridlock."


Neither of those is an endorsement of Owen by any stretch.

The ad also lauds another of Bush's appellate court nominees, Janice Rogers Brown, who currently sits on the California Supreme Court and is nominated for a seat on the US Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. The ad said she has "won praise by Republicans and Democrats." But there's only one Democrat cited by Progress for America - former Senator Zell Miller, the Georgian who supported President Bush's reelection campaign, delivered the keynote address at the Republican National Convention and suggested John Kerry would arm the US military with "spitballs."
So Progress For America flat out lied about the two major points in its ad.

But what about the ad from People For the American Way?
On the other side, the liberal People for the American Way released an ad May 3 attacking both Owen and Brown. The PFAW ad says of Brown, "She's so radical that she says, with programs like Social Security and Medicare, seniors are cannibalizing their grandchildren!"

Actually, Brown was speaking about the debt being passed on to future generations, not suggesting that Medicare or Social Security causes old people to eat human flesh.
So Progress for America "twists facts" by actually twisting the facts. On the other hand, People For the American Way presented the facts accurately, but since incredibly stupid people might think that Janice Rogers Brown was literally claiming that elderly people have to eat the flesh of their grandchildren, PFAW is guilty of twisting the facts as well.

Factcheck bills itself as a "nonpartisan, nonprofit, 'consumer advocate' for voters that aims to reduce the level of deception and confusion in U.S. politics." That is ironic considering that, with idiotic exposés like this, they just end up increasing the level of deception and confusion in U.S. politics.

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