The Most Reliable Of The Factcheckers Turns Full Propagandist

My contempt for the mainstream media’s rejection of professional ethics to serve as the lickspittle lackeys of the Democratic Party and its progressive stakeholders knows no bounds. In the same general pernicious category lie the media’s allies—social media, Big Tech, and the self-proclaimed factcheckers. For decades now, I had held on to the hopeful fiction that at least one factchecking organization, the Annenberg Public Policy Center’s FactCheck.Org, at least could be relied upon to make a good faith effort to do its job objectively. Oh, it has always had a left-leaning bias, make no mistake about that. Many years ago I was at a conference where the keynote speaker was the head of FactCheck.Org. She proudly proclaimed the organization’s “absolute objectivity and non-partisanship.” When it came to time for audience questions, I couldn’t restrain myself: by pure coincidence, I happened to have in my briefcase a recent “factcheck” by the group that outright misstated a fact to minimize negative characterizations of Bill Clinton. I read the relevant passage to the speaker, and asked, “How can you honestly describe that passage as anything other than partisan and biased?” Her response was, as I recall, “Huminahuminahumina...”

But still, I am a sap. I so wanted to believe that there was an exception to my conviction that factcheckers are all Democrat propagandists. And now FactCheck has engaged in an instance of flagrant (and inept) propaganda under the guise of factchecking that is worthy of Baghdad Bob or Pravda.

You will recall that poor, addled President Biden had a much mocked Ron Burgundy moment last week, reading “End of quote. Repeat the line,” off his teleprompter as if it were part of his speech’s text rather than stage directions. This is on audio and video; it can’t be denied. Yet the White House took the extraordinary step of trying to make the gaffe go away retroactively. The official White House transcript added two words Biden never said: “End of quote. [Let me] Repeat the line.” Clever! Also dishonest and creepily totalitarian. Next came a direct statement from White House Assistant Press Secretary Emilie Simons, who denied that Biden cluelessly read cues directly from the teleprompter, just as Ron had read “Go fuck yourself, San Diego!” in “Anchorman.”

“No. He said, ‘let me repeat that line,’” Simons tweeted. She went on to claim that Biden “wanted to emphasize that American women should let their voices be heard in order to reclaim our rights” and that he often uses “similar phrases about repetition for emphasis.”

Hey, did you know that President Trump lied all the time and his White House staff couldn’t be trusted? Never mind; I don’t know why that popped into my head just now.

Time for a factcheck! We’ll get the truth now: the gold standard FactCheck.Org is on the case. And what was its verdict? The piece was headlined, “Social Media Posts Misleadingly Edit and Misrepresent Biden Remarks from Teleprompter.”

Its evidence for that assessment: the White House transcript that was edited to eliminate Biden’s gaffe…and the lying statement from Simons! “This is just another example of Biden being falsely accused of having issues while using a teleprompter.” The “Its isn’t what it is” classic also chastised critics for “insinuating that [Biden] is becoming senile” and “falsely claim[ing] that he mistakenly read the cues off the teleprompter.”

The pathetic part of this is that I would be inclined to excuse this episode. Biden is becoming senile, or course, but messing up while reading a teleprompter doesn’t prove it. Unlike 95% of those who are mocking Biden, I’ve used a teleprompter. It’s hard. I can easily see how someone might read a cue that wasn’t supposed to be read. The fact that the White House and the media and “factcheckers” feel they have to engage in a cover-up is far more alarming: they obviously think that the episode is significant and endangers their policy aganda. They think that Biden is senile.

FactCheck.Org is also one of Facebook’s primary censors.

10 thoughts on “The Most Reliable Of The Factcheckers Turns Full Propagandist

  1. What surprises me most (should I be surprised??) about this and similar episodes is how his “handlers” and staff have not figured out how simply avoid putting such directions into the teleprompter, and in this case simply repeating the line again in the read text. But then the current administration staff all really do seem to fulfill the common reality that “education” can actually make one (more) stupid than one was before.

  2. Considering other such instances and Joe’s recently caught on camera made for morons cheat sheet, with such instructions as “YOU take YOUR seat”, the presumption should now be “gaffe” whenever there’s a question. It seems likely that the other times in the speech where he said “end of quote” that he was reading the directions there, too.

  3. What a crock of shit! None of Biden’s critics are insinuating the he’s becoming senile!

    They’re outright stating that he *is* senile, because it’s obvious to anyone who has ever been close to someone with dementia that he’s showing all of the hallmarks. And that’s when he’s cleaned up and prepped for his (short and limited) public appearances. Joe is not well, and I wouldn’t be surprised to find that they jack him up on stimulants like Adderall to help get him through speeches and such.

  4. The process is similar to how super simple religious people work.

    Someone makes a claim. I have a list of sources that claim to be gatekeepers, and these sources all lean in one direction but describe all other sources as “unreliable.”

    The gatekeepers all reinforce each other and therefore keep out anyone who is not part of that group. There isn’t an actual, objective investigation into a particular fact. It’s more like the group trying to keep out anything that could make anyone question the group consensus.

    This is happening because progressivism has become a religion.

    There’s a famous quote that says the question is not whether people are religious or not. Instead, the question is what you will be religious about. People that reject organized religion will replace it with someone else, often politics.

    There are people in this world who have an independent mind and want to know if a claim is true. The fact checkers are emphatically not like that. I’ve worked with these types, and they are extremely rigid.

    In this world:

    1. Global warming is going to kill us all, but I’m not giving up my phone or any electronics.

    2. The mainstream media is almost always right, but these liberal sources that say the media is corporate owned is also right.

    3. Justice Kavanaugh is a rapist.

    4. Clarence Thomas might be a rapist, but he’s definitely not “really black.”

    5. Universities are bastions of tolerance and free inquiry, but conservatives need not apply for any professorships.

    etc. etc. etc.

    • 8728,

      Do t let’s forget that we were supposed to be sitting on a ball of ice, according to “climatologists” in the mid-70s.

      Having watched this fory professional life (since ’71 or so), I’ve realized that climate predictions generally work only in local areas, or in so-called microclimates. I find the notion that “climatologists” can predict global effects, especially anthropogenic, is ridiculous, given all the variables. In engineering, when a model predicts what you expect, count on it being a flawed model or one that’s overdetermined. Never forget that these folks depend on outside funding that would disappear if they didn’t preach the gospel of climate change, and thus lose their status and chances for advancement.

      MB

  5. The whole “[Let me] repeat the line thing is so…. weird. I know that bracket man has been working full time with Biden’s administration for the last couple of years… But this is something special because the brackets really don’t do enough work here. Everyone who was in a position to know says that Biden was meant to repeat a line. So it was, if they’re not entirely full of shit:

    “One of the most extraordinary parts of the decision in my view is the majority writes, and I quote, ‘Women … ’ — it’s a quote now, from the majority — ‘women are not without electoral or political power. It is noteworthy that the percentage of women who registered to vote and cast a ballot is consistently higher than the percentage of the men who do so.’ End of quote, [let me] repeat the line”

    So…. Why didn’t he repeat a line? What he said next was:

    “Women are not without electoral…” and/or political — “or” — let me be precise; not “and/or” — “…or political power.”

    So, is the issue that he’s Ron Burgundying his teleprompter, or that he’s in a running gun battle with it, because I really doubt that the teleprompter said that. And which is worse?

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