The newest term being targeted toward the masses is the coming of the “Dark Winter,” which is nothing more than propaganda based lies meant to prepare the sheep for a planned continuation and escalation of this fake pandemic in order to bring about world domination. Operation Dark Winter was the code name for a senior-level bio-terrorist attack simulation conducted from June 22–23, 2001, which was designed to carry out a mock version of a covert bio-weapons attack on the United States. The players involved in this were the Johns HopkinsCenter for Civilian Biodefense Strategies(CCBS) and the Center for Strategic and International Studies(CSIS), and the project designers were Randy Larsen and Mark DeMier of Analytic Services. It is very interesting that the same Johns Hopkins along with the evil Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation conducted Event 201, a coronavirus “simulation” in October 2019, on the verge of this so-called pandemic. The same players, same objectives, but now it is real.
I would expect the term “dark winter” to become a new buzzword, as this new term the second time around, is strictly tied to the original scenario, but applied to today’s panic. None of this is a coincidence, none of it is accidental, but it is sinister. If things continue as they have been, and this lockdown remains in place, whether fully or partially, the anticipation of this “dark winter” will be on the minds of most all American sheep, especially if it is continually used as the threat of things to come.
With that in the minds of the people, they will be expecting the worst, and will probably get exactly what they expect; another planned pandemic.
The current government plan, regardless of what is partially opened this summer, is to continue to mandate social distancing and masks as some sort of faux protection against this non-existent threat, to continue to shame those dissenters that refuse to comply with government orders, and to use more force to stop any dissent. In addition, testing as many people as possible with flawed tests will continue, and more demands to test will be forthcoming. While that is happening, the contact tracing of individuals will become more and more evident as tracking technology is advanced and implemented nationwide. All of this is leading to this current crisis stage’s ultimate goal, which is forced mass vaccination. As I wrote a few days ago, “the government has announced that a contract for $138 millionhas been issued to fund the production of 500 million pre-filled Covid-19 vaccine “injection devices,” this before any vaccine is available or tested.” As any should be able to see, this is a complex, but an easily identifiable plot that is coming to fruition very quickly and with little resistance. It is planned down to the last detail, just as were all the practice runs that were acted out in the past. I have always thought that bad people will expose what they are up to if only people would listen. Well, this time, they have told the public over and over again what was coming, but few listened.
The “injection devices” are already available, and now Trump is mobilizing the entire military to make war against the American people, by sending armed soldiers into the streets to vaccinate by force everyone in the country. Without mass resistance, this next phase will be successful, and then the following phase of population control would have already been implemented due to the poisoning, sterilizing, and possibly chipping of all those vaccinated. These plans are being accomplished out in the open, and with the consent, implied or not, of the people in this country.
Multiple agendas are being advanced, and the destruction of the economy and the resulting dependence of the population on government are going forward and being accepted. Pending legislation to print more money and dole it out to those out of work is already in process, as $3 trillion will most likely be distributed in small part to appease those not working, but most of that newly printed money will be used to continue the transfer of wealth to the few at the top. As debt, poverty, and bankruptcy continue to decimate the general population, the top of the heap will continue to buy up assets at depressed prices with taxpayer money, so in essence, those now starving are helping to enrich the perpetrators of this fraudulent virus scam.
We are definitely facing a horrible pandemic, but it is not due to any virus. The real pandemic is that the United States government and the enforcers for the controlling ruling class, are waging war on American citizens, and will not relent until the people themselves stop it. This totalitarian takeover will never cease by using the political system, as that corrupt system is why we are in this mess in the first place. A belief in the nation instead of self-led to nationalistic pride where none was deserved, and has brought complacency, weakness, and dependence on government, and left the people without the will to self-rule. The result is obvious, but more than that, it is now fatally dangerous. As I said earlier this year here:
No vibrant society can exist in a state of obedience. While many great minds have discussed the natural desire of man to obey authority, including Sigmund Freud, this trait in man does not allow the capability to seek or claim freedom. The obedient are bound to a life of rule, as that is their nature.
Freedom and independence can only be achieved and held by non-obedient, non-conforming individuals. Therefore, we must in order to defeat this criminal government force, become a nation of dissenters by not complying with any government order concerning this government created a fake crisis.
LISTEN: Deborah Tavarres warns to prepare for Dark Winter and Black Sky
An influential book written by Edward L. Bernays in 1928, incorporated the literature from social science and psychological manipulation into an examination of the techniques of public communication. Bernays wrote the book in response to the success of some of his earlier works such as Crystallizing Public Opinion (1923) and A Public Relations Counsel (1927). Propaganda explored the psychology behind manipulating masses and the ability to use symbolic action and propaganda to influence politics, effect social change, and lobby for gender and racial equality. Walter Lippman was Bernays’ unacknowledged American mentor and his work The Phantom Public greatly influenced the ideas expressed in Propaganda a year later. The work propelled Bernays into media historians’ view of him as the “father of public relations.”1
Edward Bernays is considered to be the “father of public relations” and used concepts discovered by his uncle Sigmund Freud to manipulate the public using the subconscious.
Chapter 1 begins with these words (Unless otherwise noted, page numbers refer to the 2004 Ig Publishing edition, ISBN 0970312598):
The conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society. Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country. We are governed, our minds are molded, our tastes formed, our ideas suggested, largely by men we have never heard of. This is a logical result of the way in which our democratic society is organized. Vast numbers of human beings must cooperate in this manner if they are to live together as a smoothly functioning society. – p. 37
In almost every act of our lives, whether in the sphere of politics or business, in our social conduct or our ethical thinking, we are dominated by the relatively small number of persons […] who understand the mental processes and social patterns of the masses. It is they who pull the wires that control the public mind, who harness old social forces and contrive new ways to bind and guide the world. -p. 37–38
In theory, everybody buys the best and cheapest commodities offered to him on the market. In practice, if every one went around pricing, and chemically testing before purchasing, the dozens of soaps or fabrics or brands of bread which are for sale, economic life would become hopelessly jammed. -p. 39
Propaganda is the executive arm of the invisible government. – p. 48
Who are the men, who, without our realizing it, give us our ideas, tell us whom to admire and whom to despise, what to believe about the ownership of public utilities .. about immigration who tell us how our houses should be designed, what furniture we should put into them, what menus we should serve at our table, what kind of shirts we must wear, what sports we should indulge in, what plays we should see, what charities we should support, what pictures we should admire, what slang we should affect, what jokes we should laugh at? -p.59
The new profession of public relations has grown up because of the increasing complexity of modern life and the consequent necessity for making the actions of one part of the public understandable to other sectors of the public. It is due, too, to the increasing dependence of organized power of all sorts upon public opinion. Governments, whether they are monarchical, constitutional, democratic or communist, depend upon acquiescent public opinion for the success of their efforts and, in fact, government is government only by virtue of public acquiescence. Industries, public utilities, educational movements, indeed all groups representing any concept or product, whether they are majority or minority ideas, succeed only because of approving public opinion. Public opinion is the unacknowledged partner in all broad efforts.
The public relations counsel, then, is the agent who, working with modern media of communications and the group formations of society, brings an idea to the consciousness of the public. -p. 63
If we understand the mechanism and motives of the group mind, it is now possible to control and regiment the masses according to our will without them knowing it. -Page 71 (1928 edition?)
If you can influence the leaders, either with or without their conscious cooperation, you automatically influence the group which they sway. But men do not need to be actually gathered together in a public meeting or in a street riot, to be subject to the influences of mass psychology. Because man is by nature gregarious he feels himself to be member of a herd, even when he is alone in his room with the curtains drawn. His mind retains the patterns which have been stamped on it by the group influences. -Page 73 (1928 edition)
But when the example of the leader is not at hand and the herd must think for itself, it does so by means of clichés, pat words or images which stand for a whole group of ideas or experiences. Not many years ago, it was only necessary to tag a political candidate with the word interests to stampede millions of people into voting against him, because anything associated with “the interests” seemed necessary corrupt. Recently the word Bolshevik has performed a similar service for persons who wished to frighten the public away from a line of action.
By playing upon a old cliché, or manipulating a new one, the propagandist can sometimes swing a whole mass group emotions. -Page 74
It is chiefly the psychologists of the school of Freud who have pointed out that many of man’s thoughts and actions are compensatory substitutes for desires which he has been obliged to suppress. A thing may be desired not for its intrinsic worth or usefulness, but because he has unconsciously come to see in it a symbol of something else, the desire for which he is ashamed to admit to himself…This general principle, that men are very largely actuated by motives which they conceal from themselves, is as true of mass as of individual psychology…Human desires are the steam which makes the soial machine work. Only by understanding them can the propagandist control that cast, loose-jointed mechanism which is modern society. -Page 75 as quoted in Historical Archaeologies of Capitalism edited by Mark P. Leone, Jocelyn E. Knauf, p.40
While, under the handicraft of small-unit system of production was that typical a century ago, demand created the supply, today supply must actively seek to create its corresponding demand. A single factory, potentially capable of supplying a whole continent with its particular product, cannot afford to wait until the public asks for its product; it must maintain constant touch, through advertising and propaganda, with the vast public in order to assure itself the continuous demand which alone will make its costly plant profitable. This entails a vastly more complex system of distribution than formerly. -Page 84
No serious sociologist any longer believes that the voice of the people expresses any divine or specially wise and lofty idea. The voice of the people expresses the mind of the people, and that mind is made up for it by the group leaders in whom it believes and by those persons who understand the manipulation of public opinion. It is composed of inherited prejudices and symbols and clichés and verbal formulas supplied to them by the leaders. -Page 109
One reason, perhaps, why the politician today is slow to take up methods which are a commonplace in business life is that he has such ready entry to the media of communication on which his power depends.
The newspaperman looks to him for news. And by his power of giving or withholding information the politician can often effectively censor political news. But being dependent, every day of the year and for year after year, upon certain politicians for news, the newspaper reporters are obliged to work in harmony with their news sources. – Page 120
Propaganda is of no use to the politician unless he has something to say which the public, consciously or unconsciously, wants to hear. – Page 123
America has been plagued by a powerful mind control tactic which was suggested, experimented with, and fully implemented over a century ago by a man named [lightbox full=”http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qiKMmrG1ZKU”]Edward Bernays[/lightbox]. The time has come for Americans to come to grips with the content and theories that Bernays used to influence American history. It’s time to call out the legacy of deceit and manipulation that this man brought to American history; by doing this, only then can America begin to heal from the web of psychological damage inflicted on a nation.
This tactic of psychological manipulation, control and deceit has spawned into a world-wide media propaganda practice (which he personally developed for the CIA) that has proven venomous and destructive, and that has been directly and indirectly responsible for the death of tens of millions of people in the past century alone.
It was the deceptive Bernays who studied his uncle’s work (Sigmund Freud) on psychoanalysis and thought through his own theories about human behavior and how to manipulate the masses. When speaking of Bernays we are talking about a man who seemed unattached to human suffering. Bernays seems to have walked through life proud of what he had discovered. There seems to be no indication that he ever actually realized the magnitude of the damage he inflicted on humanity by putting into practice his deceptive mind control theories, to be used for promoting ideas that were not necessarily true and ideas that would be used to control humans. Bernays’ pride seemed to have come from knowing that his predictions about human behavior were correct. There are no indications that he felt any remorse for what he had done.
Despite all of this, Bernays is respected and esteemed in a positive manner by Hollywood and constituents. He seemed to have walked through life under the radar of fame. He managed to manipulate the world, including showing politicians how to sell wars to the general public while millions of innocent people and troops from both sides of the world wars died in vain.
It’s time for America to come together to reverse the Edward Bernays effect. Let’s do what we can to expose the deceptive public persuasion techniques he implemented and let the world know there is a manual on how to lie to the public and manipulate the masses into believing propaganda lies.
3 Steps to take to solve the problem
As a nation we can begin to peel apart the lies and deception of Edward Bernays one by one and tell the public today what Bernays refused to tell them then. Three steps can be taken to trigger the reversal of the Edward Bernays effect:
First step is to educate those we come in contact with about exactly who Edward Bernays was. It is important to note that he was the nephew of Sigmund Freud, the most popular and influential figure in the American psychology books and literature. Understanding who Bernays was will likely shed a very different light on how many perceive Sigmund Freud and his work. It will make you wonder if Freud’s work would even be spoken about today had it not been for his nephew promoting his uncle’s work.
Second step is to realize that although humans CAN be influenced by getting them to respond to unconscious primitive urges, that doesn’t mean that we should be striving to do this. Just because something is possible doesn’t mean we should seek to do it. It is possible to skin a cat alive, it is however, a crime and an immoral, heartless and psychopathic thing to do. Bernays was apparently so manipulative and self-absorbed he managed to stop humanity at the first level of logic which I call the ‘Frankenstein experiment’ level; ‘since it is possible, then let’s do it and see how it works.’ In other words, Bernays agreed to be an instrument of deceit to destroy the lives of many just so he can observe the results and receive the glory of being the master manipulator or more officially the founding father of modern day public relations.
By all standards, humanity recognizes that if someone does something that causes the death and destruction of millions, then that action should be punishable and recognized as an evil or immoral deed. No such case when dealing with a historic master manipulator; Bernays died with more blood on his hands than possibly anyone else in American history, yet he was never tried for his crimes against humanity or was ever in jail for what he did.
Third, once you realize the damage implemented by Bernays’ lies and deceit it is up to you to work toward reversing these lies and deception. Let’s tell the world that truth is not determined by a billboard, a cleverly timed mass media article, a TV commercial, a movie trailer or any stage that feeds information to the masses. Truth is not determined by how you FEEL about it or how the messenger delivers the message. We have feelings and those feeling have NOTHING to do with what is true. Let’s admit that we are all vulnerable to manipulation by messages that are based on emotion and sensation. These emotions and sensations can be manipulated with sound and sight, music and emotional outbursts, powerful speeches and rhyming phrases.
Let’s equally realize that human intelligence, commonsense and reason is a special gift that though it doesn’t serve government much, it serves YOU the individual very much. Edward Bernays could have just as easily studied how the people can manipulate governments or how everyday people can promote themselves to corporations to live dynamic and successful lives. Instead he chose the dark side and gave all his work to government and the process of controlling the masses in such a way that it gave controlling governments all the power to kill and destroy.
Will you be someone perpetuating the Edward Bernays lies? Are you willing to look into this topic and see where this man pulled humanity and America in the wrong direction for over a century now? Think for a minute what this world would be like if we can pull together to reverse the evil etched into the consciousness of humanity by one man? I absolutely believe this reversal is possible and is already in progress. With every passing day more and more people are hearing and wondering a little more about just who this guy was and why do most American have no idea who he was.
Enough of the dark theories which have plagued humanity for too long. It’s time to move on from the basic lessons learned. Marketing and public relations are based on lies; all politics and politicians live and die by public relations, lies and carefully timed talking points and sequential messages. The government NEEDS the press and all of its marketing tools to deceive the public into believing what it wants the public to believe. This persuasion IS the matrix of lies and deceit we live in, and this system of cognitive persuasion authored by Bernays IS the very lifeline of the establishment government. To believe anything different is to believe in fantasies and conspiracies.
The Edward Bernays work is a clear record of the cognitive manipulation of humanity. Don’t ignore it, instead confront the reality of it and join humanity as we work to REVERSE this effect for good.
Humanity is gifted with reason and highly intellectual cognitive skills that are far superior to the skills of other animals; yet even animals, many of which are incredibly resourceful, instinctual, intuitive and highly respectful of nature, won’t do some of the things humans do. Will you allow the work of one man erase these incredible skills you are equipped with? Often people speak about waking up, elevating consciousness or going down the rabbit hole of truth and it may just be that these terms refer to simply reversing the Edward Bernays effect. What do You think?
Bernie Suarez is an activist, critical thinker, radio host, musician, M.D, Veteran, lover of freedom and the Constitution, and creator of the Truth and Art TV project. He also has a background in psychology and highly recommends that everyone watch a documentary titled The Century of the Self. Bernie has concluded that the way to defeat the New World Order is to truly be the change that you want to see. Manifesting the solution and putting truth into action is the very thing that will defeat the globalists.
Most of the polls reported by the mainstream media are carefully crafted lies designed to manipulate and shape voter opinion, not report it. There was a time when public electoral polls actually attempted to determine which candidate was going to win an election. They weren’t infallible, but they were, at least, conducted honestly. Today, almost all publicly available polling comes from media companies or universities in partnership with media companies.
The media company that pays for a poll establishes the methodology of the poll. They determine how many people will be included in the polling sample. Who will be polled, such as likely voters, registered voters, or just adults, men or women, Republicans or Democrats. They also determine what questions will be asked by the polling company. The results can be manipulated by the questions that are asked, how they are asked, or even in what order they are asked. In short, media companies determine so many of the factors that underpin the veracity of the poll, they can significantly affect the results of a poll before it is even conducted.
Considering that the Media Research Center recently reported that the mainstream media has slanted their evening news broadcasts to report on Trump unfavorably 95% of the time, compared to 5% favorable coverage. With a 19 to 1 reporting bias, is there any doubt that the media would slant polling results in the same manner?
With the most important election in America’s history to be determined (with Trump wanting to put power back into the hands of the people vs. the globalist at risk of losing many years of progress towards the New World Order), polls once again become an important component of the mainstream media political reporting. But only if the poll results support the media’s agenda. If poll results run contrary to the goals and desires of the leftist media, the results of polls that run counter to approved doctrine are buried deep, if they are reported at all. Presidential poll results favorable to the democrats are woven into high profile stories designed to discourage Trump supporters into believing that resistance is futile, Trump can’t win, so don’t waste your time voting.
Presidential election polls are expensive and media companies usually promote new poll results every way possible to attract more readers and viewers, so it’s always fascinating when media companies don’t report their own polls. Last week CNN buried the results of a large-scale, 2020 Presidential election poll so deep in their website it was hard to find.
So, why in the world would CNN spend all that money and then hide the results of their own poll? It’s simple, the poll must have been favorable to Trump and detrimental to Biden. The more favorable a story is for Trump, the deeper CNN buries it. For them to bury their own poll, it must have been pretty good for the President. The headline for the CNN poll, if you could find it, was “Biden tops Trump nationwide, but battlegrounds tilt Trump.” The Townhall article on the same data came through with “New CNN poll shows Trump crushing Biden in swing states.”
When polls show a majority of folks favor a policy or candidate, it marginalizes those who disagree with the poll, peer-pressuring them into conformity. The mainstream polling companies do not want to correct their polling because they know the skewed polls work to influence people. Republicans in Congress usedskewed polls on repealing Obamacare to justify their lack of action.
A nationwide poll of the type that CNN claims Biden is leading is actually irrelevant in a Presidential Election because of the Electoral College. It’s not a national popular vote, much to the consternation of many on the left, it’s 50 state elections, And by no means are all 50 states in play. Barring a massive event, 35 of those states are pre-determined, not competitive, not changing for anything. An opinion poll in New York or California is irrelevant as it’s a foregone conclusion that the Democrat will win. The margin doesn’t matter as the electoral votes will be the same.
Due to the winner-take-all state laws allocating electors to the electoral college, the national polls aren’t what people should be looking at. It’s not a national popular vote, much to the consternation of many on the left, it’s 50 state elections, and by no means are all 50 states in play. Only the handful of states that decide elections should be taken into account (and if you don’t like that, then changeit). Polls in those states from Rasmussen Reports, as well as from the reputableInvestor’s Business Daily, will provide the most accurate predictions in a presidential race. Rasmussen foundthat Trump was beating Biden by 52 to 45 percent in those states – with oversampling! The poll noted that if equal numbers of Democrats and Republicans were polled, Trump’s lead jumped to 15 percent.
The Power of Manipulating the Data
Argumentum ad populum is Latin for the idea that because many people believe something to be true, it is true. Closely related is the bandwagon effect in marketing, where marketers attempt to persuade people to purchase their goods and services by claiming “everyone else is doing it.” These strategies aren’t just used to sell goods and services—they are also used to sell politicians and policies.
What’s the best way to show that “everyone else” supports the candidate or legislation? Polling. When polls show a majority of folks favor a policy or candidate, it marginalizes those who disagree with the poll, peer-pressuring them into conformity by making them think their opinions are unpopular, invalid, or irrelevant.
The problem, however, is that polling seems to be increasingly skewed in favor of a particular agenda. Can you remember the last time the mainstream media reported a poll on social issues showing a conservative idea winning?
In 2016, they skewed their polls to make it look like Hillary Clinton was going to win the presidential election. The Drudge Report, which used to favor the right, is now linking to these biased polls with headlines that shriek “Shock Poll!” Because they really are shocking; no one believes that Joe Biden is significantly ahead of Donald Trump in the polls. As one writer described it, “Biden can’t get througha fawning five-minute interview from his basement, with notes and a teleprompter, without losing his train of thought or saying something absurd.”
One of the most popular polling companies (though not above manipulating data) in recent years is Rasmussen Reports. Notably, of all the recent major presidential polls, Rasmussen showedTrump trailing Biden by twelve points in October, a month before the election. The poll surveyed likely voters, and did not break down Republicans v. Democrats. Four years earlier, the media was singing the same tune. On June 26, 2016, Time reported, “Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton holds a double-digit lead over presumptive GOP nominee Donald Trump.” How did that turn out?
Tricks are for Kids… and Polling Companies
Oversampling is not an accident or an error, it is media manipulation of the poll in order to ensure a desired result. John Tantillo, writing for Newsmax, looked at some polls compiled at Real Clear Politicsearlier this year and foundthat every single one of them had a bias of at least six points toward Democrats — polling more Democrats than Republicans. The only reason to oversample is to get a specific desired result. The Independents polled were underrepresented and leaned toward the Democrats. This is not an accurate representation. A December Gallup poll of party affiliation foundthat 28 percent identify as Democrats, 28 percent as Republicans, and 41 percent as Independents.
Wayne Allan Root, also writing at Newsmax, identifieda Fox News poll last fall that surveyed a whopping 48 percent of Democrats. Similarly, an analyst who looked at polls in 2017 foundthat by oversampling Democrats, they robbed Trump of 8 points. According to National Review, the major polling company Pew Research Center startedoversampling Democrats back in 1992 and hasn’t stopped. Unfortunately, most polls don’t show the breakdown of those surveyed.
Choosing ‘Iffy’ Republicans to Poll
The other polling bias against Republicans involves surveying voters who aren’t likely to vote. Sometimes this involves surveying “registered voters.” Well, a lot of registered voters have no intention of voting in the next election. And those less likely to vote tend to lean more to the left. Polls are a little more accurate when they survey “likely voters.” These may be people who have voted in the last presidential election. But it’s still not as accurate as surveying “likely likely voters,” as one polling company labeled them. These voters consist of those who vote in every election — which contain a higher percentage of conservatives. You may really hate Trump, but if you don’t vote you’re not going to have an effect on the election.
Rush Limbaugh recently shared on the recent polls coming out that are outrageous if not fraudulent. Townhall reported:
Conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh zeroed-in on how these pollsters are picking their GOP samples. To no one’s shock, they’re skewing these surveys by overloading it with suburban Republican voters who are more hostile to Trump. And of course, they averse to sampling rural Republicans who are die-hard Trump supporters. In essence, the ‘R-split’ are pretty much soft Democrats at this point, as suburban voters are notoriously squishy with zero backbone.
Questions can be worded in a way that leads a respondent to an answer that may or may not reflect his true feelings. For example, I could ask the question “Do you want to stop the war in Iraq so the lives of innocent civilians can be spared?” Virtually every American wants to prevent innocent loss of life, so many respondents may answer yes to this question, even if they think the war is morally just. But reporters summarizing the results may say “…95 percent of respondents answered yes when asked if they wanted to stop the war“. The questioner can also surround the question with information that biases the answer. For example, “Seventy percent of homeless shelter residents are single mothers and their children. Should the next fiscal budget include an increase in funds to local shelters?” Respondents may believe the money is better spent on other areas, but the extra information points people in the direction of one answer.
Answers to poll questions are often more complicated that yes-no or among a small list of choices. For example, a poll may ask “Do you support a war with Iran?” The only choices may be yes or no. But many people may say “Yes, but only if they are making nuclear weapons” or “Yes, but only if it is sanctioned by the U.N.” Another example is a consumer confidence question that asks, “Do you consider yourself rich or poor?” Many people will want to answer something in between, but that isn’t a choice.
It’s normally too expensive or time-consuming to survey everyone in population; thus, we must rely on samples to gauge the opinions of everyone. A reliable, scientific poll questions a large enough sample of people to ensure statistical accuracy and includes a representative selection of respondents. Thus, a poll designed to represent American public opinion wouldn’t be very reliable if it only included 10 people or included only white males. It’s rare that news reports will mention details of the information sample or how the survey was conducted. Viewers and readers usually just take the poll results as fact.
Human Error or Manipulation of Results
Whether the poll is done in person, by phone, by mail, or by web, a human being usually has to eventually tally & report the results. That causes problems for two reasons. One, a human is prone to mistakes. If you’re tallying thousands of responses, you’re bound to make mistakes. Even if a computer handles the tally, computers are still programmed by humans. Second, the person may be dishonest and wants to achieve a certain result. For example, assume I’m a passionate advocate for banning the death penalty and am taking a phone survey. A strong poll result showing the public in favor of a death-penalty ban may convince some politicians to take action. When taking a poll, it’s easy for me to put some extra chalk marks in the anti-death penalty column even when people are answering pro-death penalty in the phone calls. Eventually, I may just achieve the poll result that I want.
A Major Problem – Contacting the Sample
A new problem that affects poll sample is the process of contacting the sample voters. People are no longer interested in participating in polls. They simply refuse to answer the phone, or else tell the pollster that they will not participate.
The classic pollster’s technique known as random digit dialing, in which firms robo-dial phone after phone, is failing, because an ever-dwindling number of people have landlines. By 2014, 60 percent of Americans used cell phones either most or all of the time, making it difficult or impossible for polling firms to reach three out of five Americans. (Government regulations make it prohibitively expensive for pollsters to call cell phones.) And even when you can dial people at home, they don’t answer; whereas a survey in the 1970s or 1980s might have achieved a 70 percent response rate, by 2012 that number had fallen to 5.5 percent, and in 2016 it’s headed toward an infinitesimal 0.9 percent. And finally, the demographics of participants are narrowing: An elderly white woman is 21 times more likely to answer a phone poll than a young Hispanic male. So polling samples are often inherently misrepresentative.
Many who do participate in polls now lie to the pollster about who they are supporting. Since there is little possibility in determining who is lying or not, this presents another bias into the poll.
The type of contact is also problematic. The younger voters have cell phones, so they are more difficult to contact. And with the ability to screen calls, contacting them becomes all the more difficult in getting a representative sample.
Countering the difficulty in obtaining a representative sample, pollsters have turned to the Internet to try and achieve representative samples. This imposes its own standard of difficulty since those willing to participate in on-line polling will tend to have a different “mind-set” than someone who is contacted by phone who would otherwise not participate in polls.
Poll results can be presented in a misleading way
Even if polls are scientifically accurate and are done by unbiased, profession polling organizations, there are still other problems that make polls unreliable. Most news stories don’t present the raw data behind a poll and let you draw your own conclusion. Instead, the results will be presented in summary format as part of an analysis article. For example, a poll question may ask “Do you support military action to unseat the Islamic fundamentalist regime of Iran (Yes | No | Unsure)?” The raw data result may be: 29 percent support, 28 percent oppose, 43 percent unsure. The correct conclusion to draw from this poll is that the public generally hasn’t made up its mind or needs more information. However, a biased reporter may selectively draw from the results and give the wrong impression.
2016 Presidential Election – Trump vs. Hillary: Pollsters and statisticians gave Hillary Clinton odds of between 75 and 99 percent of winning the U.S. presidential election. How did so many get it so wrong? These polls were oversampled with democrats. The article linked also shows that the President of Hart Research and Associates, Mr. Geoff Garin, who conducted a fequently cited poll, had Hillary in the lead by 11 points and soon afterbecame “a strategic adviser for Priorities USA in support of Hillary Clinton’s election“. Hart recieved $220,000 from Clinton’s campaign in September 2016 alone. See HERE also…
A Gallup pollin the fall of 2019 claimed that 52 percent of Americans supported impeaching Trump and removing him from office. But they didn’t even bother to survey registered voters; they surveyed just anyone who picked up their phone — which could include illegal immigrants and felons who aren’t permitted to vote in most elections. The poll also over-surveyed Democrats. Most of the major liberal news and polling organizations, including Reuters, CBS, CNN, Gallup and CNBC are like this, not bothering to even survey registered voters.
Biden’s campaign manager, also known as CNN, has their “poll of polls” described as, “the five most recent national telephone polls measuring the view of registered voters.” Considering that only 58 percent of eligible voters went to the polls in 2016, CNN’s “poll of polls” may not be particularly representative of the electorate.
The Washington Post – ABC News poll sampled 1,000 adults. Not likely voters, not registered voters, not even eligible voters, just whoever answered the phone from their already biased database. They also oversampled Democrats by 6 percentage points and their sample contained 399 Trump supporters compared to 522 Biden supporters, over a 25 percent advantage for Biden. It’s no wonder their survey found Biden favored over Trump 54 to 39 percent, reflecting the sample. Is this designed to inform or influence the electorate?
The Quinnipiac University poll of registered voters, oversampled Democrats by 10 points, 34 to 24 percent. Their poll favored Biden over Trump 52 to 37 percent, a 15-point margin, two-thirds of which is negated by the skewed poll sample.
The Fox News poll oversampled Democrats by 4 points with Biden winning by an 8-point margin. Despite the voting preference for Biden, the poll was split evenly on whether Trump would be reelected.
A 2020 CNN poll surveyed registered voters, instead of likely voters, which is a much more reliable cohort. After all, we know for a fact that half of the registered voters don’t even bother to vote. That makes them remarkably unreliable and the polling is not a representative sample. 34 percent of those polled identified as Democrats while only 26 percent described themselves as Republicans, an eight-point difference.
In Houston, Texas, a proposition that would allow men to use women’s bathrooms failed by nearly 2 to 1 (61 percent to 39 percent). This is despite the fact that polls reported significant support for the proposition in the weeks and months leading up to the vote. In fact, a Houston Association of Realtors poll showed 15 percent more Houston voters supported the proposition than opposed it. Obviously, these polls were grossly inaccurate and skewed to manipulate people to vote in favor of the proposition.
in 2012, North Carolinians voted on a constitutional amendment to define marriage as the union of one man and one woman. Prior to that vote, polls had showed a majority of North Carolinians opposing the amendment, and some polls showed same-sex marriage support by upwards of a 25 percent margin. However, on election day, the amendment passed 61 to 39 percent, by a 22-point margin!
All of the Brexit polls were wrong on the UK as the people voted to exit the EU in spite of the poll manipulation that showed most were against it.
A race for Kentucky governor also reflected the same inaccurate polling. The Huffington Post, which unapologetically leans liberal, showed the liberal leading the conservative, who vocally supported Kim Davis, the clerk who declined to issue same-sex marriage licenses, by about 2.1 percent. Other polling showed the liberal leading by as much as 5 percent. While the race was tight, the conservative ended up with the support of 53 percent of Kentucky voters, while the liberal only secured 44 percent. The conservative candidate won by 9 points.
Data from Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, etc. gives polling companies a very good idea of how a person will likely vote. They obtain this information and include the high probability democrats and low probability republicans into their own database to manipulate the data to sell you a policy or politician and the peer-pressure to conform or the herd mentality to ‘go with the crowd’ will certainly have a profound effect tens of thousands of undecided voters. That is the objective.
Voter Enthusiasm Matters
Voter enthusiasm also matters a great deal, and an ABC News poll prior to the 2020 election to gauge voter enthusiasm found that only 24% of Democrats to be enthusiastic about voting for Joe Biden. That’s probably skewed as well. How can anyone be excited to vote for a career criminal that’s done nothing but line the pockets of his family and cannot give a campaign speach without a fe gaffes, wearing an earpiece, and needs performance enhancing drugs to maintain decent health. The fake polls are manipulated to show fake momentum, but while this manipulation can go either way, let there be no question as to the globalist control over the media and their efforts to use poll manipulation to get their policies and candidates passed or elected.
Polls show a trend towards whatever agenda the globalists are pushing such as anti-police views and approval of such racist groups as Black Lives Matter. Truth is: these views are very unpopular, even among black people.
On the other hand, if enthusiasm is any indication, then President Trump should win by a landslide. Thousands attended lakes and rivers all over the US in support of Trump with Trump and America flags flying high and MAGA hats dotting the water like a bad case of acne. Latinos also turned out by the thousands for car parades. Biden boat parades? Notta! The closest parade for a democrat would be those who turned up in Michigan to protest the tyrannical lockdown rules of Governor Whitmer, who was one of Biden’s finalists for VP.
It describes itself as a “nonprofit ‘consumer advocate’ for voters that aims to reduce the level of deception and confusion in U.S. politics,” however the trojan horse project is a deep state propaganda outlet used to manipulate public opinion and add false credibility to their lies and cover ups. The site monitors TV ads, debates, speeches, interviews, news releases, as well as subjective things like political rhetoric that are not susceptible to fact-checking.
In April 2016 during the 2016 Republican presidential primaries, PolitiFact weighed in on the controversy regarding the public restrooms law in North Carolina. The law required people in the state to use the public restroom that corresponds to their sex at birth.
PolitiFact ruled it objectively false to describe a person by his or her birth sex if that person identifies with another sex. The ruling came in response to an attack ad launched by then-Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz against frontrunner Trump, who said he opposed the North Carolina law. On the famed “Truth-O-Meter,” PolitiFact determined that Cruz’s ad was “mostly false.” But not because it falsely accused Trump of anything. Rather, PolitiFact adopted a radical position in vogue in academia and declared, “it’s not accurate to say that transgender women are men.”
A firestorm erupted. Writing in Mediaite, Alex Griswold said PolitiFact was being irresponsible. “What’s not fair is erasing a serious, highly contested debate out of existence because you want to nail a Republican presidential candidate as ‘wrong’ on an issue,” Griswold wrote. The website that enjoys framing itself as the final arbiter of what is and is not factually true ended up having to add an editor’s note:
“After we published this item, we heard from readers and others who said our description of a transgender woman made it sound as if there is no public debate over transgender issues or how gender is defined. We did not mean to suggest that, and we have edited our report to more fully reflect that ongoing debate. Our rating still stands, however, because the ad distorts Trump’s views on access to public bathrooms.”
The fact-checking website doubled down on its conclusion after it was backed into a corner. In the amended post, the phrase “it’s not accurate to say that transgender women are men,” became, “it’s not entirely accurate for Cruz to define a transgender woman as ‘a grown man pretending to be a woman.’”
Annenberg Public Policy Center
Its parent organization, the Annenberg Public Policy Center, was established by Walter H. Annenberg, the former publisher of TV Guide and the Philadelphia Inquirer, President Richard Nixon’s ambassador to Great Britain, and a Republican. But over time the organization moved to the left.
An affiliated organization, the Annenberg Foundation, was also established by Ambassador Annenberg. The Annenberg Foundation gained notoriety in the 2008 presidential race for its commentary related to Barack Obama’s professional ties to domestic terrorist Bill Ayers, with whom Obama ran the Chicago Annenberg Challenge from 1995 through 2001.
During that period, Obama was an Illinois state senator who wasn’t widely known. But the Chicago Annenberg Challenge most certainly knew who it was aligning itself with in Ayers, a notorious former leader of the Weather Underground group that took credit for bombing the U.S. Capitol and the Pentagon in the 1970s.
The Annenberg education program turned out to be a colossal failure in Chicago. The goal of the Chicago Annenberg Challenge was to distribute millions of dollars to the Windy City’s government-run schools in partnership with other nonprofit groups. Similar Annenberg Challenge programs were established in other cities. The Chicago Challenge doled out $49.2 million over five years as a means of leveraging matching grants from public and private sources. Seventeen other school districts across the country received Annenberg Foundation funding as well, for a grand total of $500 million over five years.
In Chicago, the program assumed a decidedly ideological slant, which shouldn’t be shocking considering the involvement of Obama and Ayers. Millions of dollars were lavished on the Peace School, which taught K-12 pupils about peace organizations; the Global Village school, which promoted “global citizenship” and the United Nations; the Al Raby School with a “focus on community and the environment”; the Cesar E. Chavez Multicultural High School, named for the farm workers’ leader; and Grassroots School Improvement, which was operated by the now-bankrupt Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN).
Founding of FACTCHECK.ORG
It’s tough to imagine 1988 Democratic presidential nominee Michael Dukakis inspiring much of anything. Yet FactCheck.org co-founder Brooks Jackson said the genesis of media fact-checking can be traced to the frustration journalists experienced over the supposedly unfair coverage of Dukakis during his failed presidential bid (Weekly Standard, Dec. 9, 2011).
Jackson was a journalist with the Associated Press, the Wall Street Journal, and CNN. He has covered national politics since 1970 and was the “Ad Police” for CNN during the 1992 presidential campaign. A decade later, in 2003, the Annenberg Public Policy Center’s director, Kathleen Hall Jamieson, recruited him to found FactCheck.org—which was online by the end of the year, in time for the 2004 presidential campaign. Jackson and Jamieson co-authored UnSpun in 2007 to explain how to see through lies and spin. Jamieson has also served on the board of the Center for Public Integrity, a left-leaning investigative journalism nonprofit that receives funding from left-wing hedge fund manager George Soros.
FactCheck.org features “Ask FactCheck,” where users ask questions based on ads or speeches; “Viral Spin,” which targets online myths and rumors; “Party Lines,” which focuses on talking points repeated by multiple members of either party; and “Mailbag,” which is basically a letters to the editor section.
In the Dec. 5, 2003 column that launched FactCheck.org, Jackson to his credit went after both parties’ candidates for president. “Our goal here can’t be to find truth—that’s a job for philosophers and theologians. What we can do here is sort through the factual claims being made between now and election day, using the best techniques of journalism and scholarship,” Jackson wrote.
In 2013 Jackson handed over the reins to Eugene Keily, formerly of the Philadelphia Inquirer and USA Today. Jackson remained as director emeritus.
FactCheck.org made news in the 2004 presidential campaign when Vice President Dick Cheney incorrectly cited it during the debate with Democratic vice presidential candidate John Edwards. Cheney said “FactCheck.com”— rather than “.org”—had defended his actions while he was CEO of Halliburton. The website leaped in to say Edwards was “mostly right” in his criticism of the Vice President. Pouncing on the “.com” slip from the vice president, the firm Name Administration, Inc. used the domain FactCheck.com to direct people to a George Soros-funded, anti-George W. Bush website (Washington Post, Oct. 7, 2004). The Post is now owned by leftist Amazon.com CEO, Jeff Bezos.
During the election cycle eight years later, FactCheck.org angered Democrats. In June 2012, the Obama campaign charged that while Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney worked for Bain Capital the company was heavily involved in outsourcing jobs to other countries. The Obama ad called Romney the “outsourcer-in-chief.” Yet FactCheck.org “found no evidence to support the claim that Romney—while he was still running Bain Capital— shipped American jobs overseas.” That’s because Romney wasn’t working at Bain when the outsourcing occurred; he was off running the 2002 Salt Lake City Winter Olympics. Unaccustomed to being challenged by mainstream media gatekeepers, the miffed Obama re-election campaign wrote a six-page letter denouncing the website. “The statement that Gov. Romney ‘left’ Bain in February 1999—a statement central to your fact-check—is not accurate,” Obama campaign spokeswoman Stephanie Cutter wrote. “Romney took an informal leave of absence but remained in full legal control of Bain and continued to be paid by Bain as such” (ABC News, July 2, 2012).
Both sides stuck to their guns in this case. Writing about the “10 Worst Fact Checks of the 2012 Election,” Forbes opinion editor Avik Roy only cited one from FactCheck.org. That check regarded former GOP presidential candidate Newt Gingrich’s assertion that food stamp usage has gone up under Obama. Roy said a proper calculation shows Gingrich was correct, even though FactCheck.org claimed it was false.
Still, Roy gave the site the benefit of the doubt for a faulty calculation, a more generous analysis than he gave other fact checkers, and added, “FactCheck.org only makes one appearance on this list, and I generally consider them the best of the bunch in terms of the fewest obvious errors” (Forbes, Nov. 5, 2012).
A biased (pro-democrat), propaganda fact checker project that emerged out of a project between the St. Petersburg Times (now Tampa Bay Times) and Congressional Quarterly in August 2007, both owned by the liberal Poynter Institute for Media Studies Inc., a 501(c)(3) nonprofit which recieves funding from Google, The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Open Society Foundations, Facebook, the Tides Foundation, Charles Koch Institute, the Omidyar Network, and other left-wing organizations. They go far beyond what they say they do, claiming to fact-check subjective things like political rhetoric that are not susceptible to fact-checking.
Leftist Bill Adair, the Times’ Washington bureau chief, was named as the first PolitiFact editor. In 2013, he was succeeded by Angie Drobnic Holan. PolitiFact expanded into 11 other states through partnerships with major metropolitan newspapers such as the Austin American-Statesman, the Atlanta Journal- Constitution, and the Miami Herald. After staffing cuts, the Knoxville News Sentinel and the Cleveland-based Plain Dealer dropped their partnerships.
After Poynter sold Congressional Quarterly to the Economist, PolitiFact became affiliated exclusively with the Times. Critics say that’s when the leftward tilt began. The University of Minnesota’s Humphrey School of Public Affairs studied 500 PolitiFact rulings from January 2010 through January 2011. Out of a total of 98 statements, Republicans were associated with 74 of the “False” or “Pants on Fire” ratings on the Truth-O-Meter. That’s 76 percent. Just 22 percent of those liar ratings were given to Democrats (Weekly Standard, Dec. 19, 2011).
A study two years later from George Mason University’s Center for Media and Public Affairs similarly ruled: “PolitiFact.com has rated Republican claims as false three times as often as Democratic claims during President Obama’s second term, despite controversies over Obama administration statements on Benghazi, the IRS and the AP” (U.S. News and World Report, May 28, 2013).
None of this is to suggest that Republican politicians don’t lie. They’re politicians. The bigger problem stems from what PolitiFact decides to evaluate and what standards it applies. You’d have to suspend all rational skepticism to think one of the nation’s two parties is almost entirely dishonest while the other is almost entirely honest. Yet, that’s what the PolitiFact stats would have the public believe.
PolitiFact was awarded a Pulitzer Prize in 2009 for its enterprising coverage of the 2008 election, forever giving it credibility. Part of that body of work in 2008 included rating as “true” the promise by candidate Obama that “if you’ve got a health care plan that you like, you can keep it” under his health care proposal. This rating came in an Oct. 9, 2008 article, about a month before the election. PolitiFact went on to say:
“It remains to be seen whether Obama’s plan will actually be able to achieve the cost savings it promises for the health care system. But people who want to keep their current insurance should be able to do that under Obama’s plan. His description of his plan is accurate, and we rate his statement True” (Forbes, Dec. 27, 2013).
As we now know, Obama’s statement was a bald-faced lie.
Don Surber writes: “Usually, PolitiFact is able to cherry pick enough facts to rationalize its decisions. But in selecting its lie of the year for 2017, the web site was unable to do much more than say well, everyone we like says it is a lie.” That Lie of the Year boldly stated: “A mountain of evidence points to a single fact: Russia meddled in the U.S. presidential election of 2016.” Now debunked, like almost all of their lies, not even Mueller and his team of 16 Trump-hating democrats could anything credible enough to piece the lie together.1
Brooks Jackson, the director emeritus of FactCheck.org, claimed responsibility for leading the media charge to keep the candidates honest. “It’s really remarkable to see how big news operations have come around to challenging false and deceitful claims directly,” he said. “It’s about time.” The chief competitor to FactCheck.org engaged in some gloating as well. “Is this the post-truth election as people have claimed? No,” said PolitiFact founder Bill Adair, “It’s actually the thank-goodness-there-are-fact-checkers election.”
Neither Jackson nor Adair got the facts right as it turned out. The public trusts the fact-checkers about as much as they trust politicians. A Rasmussen poll before Election Day found that 29 percent of likely voters believe the media’s fact-checking of political candidates, while 62 percent think the media just “skew the facts to help candidates they support.”
One only has to look at the fact-checking statistics over this past election year to understand why voters have this view. PolitiFact gave its “Pants on Fire” label, the most severe rank for a lie, to Donald Trump 57 times. Hillary Clinton earned that distinction just seven times.
A Media Research Center analysis in June found that Trump received the “False”/“Mostly False”/ “Pants on Fire” label from PolitiFact’s Truth-O-Meter 77 percent of the time. Clinton received just “False”/“Mostly False” for 26 percent of her statements (Investors Business Daily, June 30, 2016).
From September through Election Day, Republicans overall received a “Pants on Fire” ranking 28 times, and half of those went to Trump. Democrats only received four such ratings, one of which went to Clinton. Even Adair admitted the rankings are subjective. “Yeah, we’re human. We’re making subjective decisions. Lord knows the decision about a Truth-O-Meter rating is entirely subjective,” he said. “As Angie Holan, the editor of PolitiFact, often says, the Truth-O-Meter is not a scientific instrument” (Townhall, Nov. 9, 2016).
Catching politicians in lies is no doubt a worthy endeavor. Fact-checking isn’t the problem. The problem is the subjective nature of selecting what gets fact-checked and by what means; that explains how opinions are masked as fact-checking.
While truth is definite on most fronts, there are matters that can’t truly be fact-checked—often in the realm of strongly held political opinions. Such disputes are what political debates are about. In some cases, it’s what lawsuits are about. Not everything is settled—at least not yet. Even something as highly regarded as the Congressional Budget Office’s 10-year revenue and spending projections can’t be fact-checked per se, because of unforeseen wars or natural disasters that might occur, or plain old irresponsible spending.
What liberal journalist Ben Smith wrote five years ago of fact checkers is even more true today: “At their worst, they’re doing opinion journalism under pseudo-scientific banners, something that’s really corrosive to actual journalism, which if it’s any good is about reported fact in the first place” (Politico, Aug. 17, 2011).
During the 2018 mid-terms, was caught protecting a democrat candidate in the Missouri Senate Race. Here’s one analysis from the Daily Wire:
On Tuesday, Politifact, which purports to be a neutral fact-checking website but in fact leans heavily to the left, got caught protecting a member of the Democratic Party: Democratic Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill.
Politifact took issue with the ad from The Senate Leadership Fund, a pro-Republican super PAC, that claimed that McCaskill said “normal people” could afford private planes.
[…]After they were corrected, Politifact acknowledged the mistake, writing,
Initially, we published this fact-check with a rating of False, because based on the video available, it did not appear that McCaskill was talking about private planes. After publication, we received more complete video of the question-and-answer session between McCaskill and a constituent that showed she was in fact responding to a question about private planes, as well as a report describing the meeting. We re-assessed the evidence, archived the original version here, and published the version you see here with a new rating of Half True. We apologize for the error.
Daily wire also linked to some more failed Politifact “fact checks”: here, here, and here.
Also during the 2018 mid-terms, in the Arizona Senate Race, Politifact screwed up their fact-check for the Arizona Senate race. The Daily Caller explains:
PolitiFact incorrectly labeled it “mostly false” that Democratic Senate candidate Kyrsten Sinema “protested troops in a pink tutu” during its live fact-check of the Arizona Senate debate Monday night.
It’s an established fact that Sinema, a former Green Party activist who co-founded an anti-war group, wore a pink tutu at one of the multiple anti-war protests she attended in 2003.
“While we were in harm’s way, she was protesting our troops in a pink tutu,” Republican candidate Martha McSally, a former Air Force fighter pilot, said during Monday night’s debate.
Here’s their Politifact’s evaluation of McSally’s claim:
And here’s the photo of Kyrsten Sinema, protesting the troops, in a pink tutu:
The Daily Caller notes:
A 2003 Arizona State University news article at the time described Sinema wearing “something resembling a pink tutu” at one of the protests.
[…]Sinema openly associated with fringe elements of the far-left during her anti-war activism.
She promoted an appearance by Lynne Stewart, a lawyer who was convicted of aiding an Islamic terrorist organization, in 2003.
Sinema also reportedly partnered with anarchists and witches in her anti-war activism and said she did “not care” if Americans wanted to join the Taliban.
Colonel Martha McSally, as I’ve blogged about before, is a former U.S. Air Force A-10 fighter pilot, and squadron commander. She logged a lot of hours leading actual combat missions against America’s enemies – the sorts of people who sell and rape Yazidi girls. She fought them.
And now for the big one: Politifact’s fact-checking of Obamacare.
Politifact’s ‘Lies of the Year’ are actually their Own Lies
In 2009, PolitiFact began its popular feature, “Lie of the Year.” This garnered a lot of media attention.
Perhaps it should have been no surprise that the first dubious distinction was bestowed on one of the media’s favorite punching bags, Sarah Palin, the GOP’s 2008 vice presidential candidate. Palin used the phrase “death panels” in describing Obamacare. Putting aside that she was speaking rhetorically, PolitiFact called it a lie because the law did not literally create panels that sentenced patients to death. Palin was referring in part to an actual government panel, the Independent Medicare Advisory Council, or IMAC, that would advise the government on cutting costs by determining what treatments were most effective and efficient.
PolitiFact’s ruling was absurd, argued Wall Street Journal columnist James Taranto, because the law absolutely gave the federal government greater power over life and death decisions and could ultimately lead to rationing of care (Feb. 2, 2011). Taranto wrote:
“Obamacare necessarily expands the power of federal bureaucrats to make such decisions, and it creates enormous fiscal pressures to err on the side of death. Whether it establishes literal panels for that purpose is a hair-splitting quibble. By naming this ‘lie of the year,’ PolitiFact showed itself to be less seeker of truth than servant of power.”
The website seemed to be mounting a full-court defense of Obamacare when in 2010 it gave the “Lie of the Year” dishonor to everyone who referred to the Affordable Care Act as a “government takeover of health care.” PolitiFact argued that since it maintained a private insurance industry rather than a single-payer government owned system, it was not a government takeover.
Interestingly, in 2011, the Pulitzer board gave the highest honor for commentary to Joseph Rago of the Wall Street Journal for his scathing assessment of Obamacare, including his shots at PolitiFact for insisting the law was not a government takeover of health care. Rago wrote in the Journal on Dec. 23, 2010:
“The regulations that PolitiFact waves off are designed to convert insurers into government contractors in the business of fulfilling political demands, with enormous implications for the future of U.S. medicine. All citizens will be required to pay into this system, regardless of their individual needs or preferences. Sounds like a government takeover to us.”
Cato Institute health analyst Michael Cannon, who had previously agreed to do interviews with PolitiFact, stopped talking to its resident fact-checkers over the so-called lies from 2009 and 2010. It’s “not so much that each of those statements is actually factually true; it is rather that they are true for reasons that PolitiFact failed to consider,” he said.
“PolitiFact’s ‘death panels’ fact-check never considered whether President Obama’s contemporaneous ‘IMAC’ proposal would, under standard principles of administrative law, enable the federal government to ration care as Palin claimed.…PolitiFact’s ‘government takeover’ fact-check hung its conclusion on the distinction between ‘public’ vs. ‘private’ health care, without considering whether that distinction might be illusory” (Human Events, Aug. 30, 2012).
Perhaps seeking redemption, PolitiFact turned on Democrats for 2011, naming as “Lie of the Year” the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s claim that Rep. Paul Ryan’s fiscal plan meant that “Republicans voted to end Medicare.” They argued the plan would not eliminate Medicare, only reform it.
Conservative writer Ramesh Ponnuru said the Democratic claim misled seniors but wasn’t a lie. He explained the Ryan plan would make significant changes to Medicare. Thus, he said Democrats didn’t flat out lie, but were using charged rhetoric (Bloomberg News, Dec. 26, 2011). Ponnuru explained that this kind of incident exhibits a core problem with fact-checking sites:
“The reason we have politics at all is that we disagree, sometimes deeply, about how to promote the common good, and we need a peaceful and productive way to resolve or at least manage these disagreements. We disagree about how to improve U.S. health care, and we disagree about how each other’s proposals to change it should be characterized. The pretense of PolitiFact, and other media “fact checkers,” is that many of our political disputes have obvious correct answers on which all reasonable people looking fairly at the evidence can agree—and any other answer is ‘simply not true.’ This pretense really is false, and like dishonesty, it is corrosive.”
After the election in 2012, PolitiFact, not surprisingly, called Mitt Romney the year’s biggest liar after his campaign said Obama “sold Chrysler to Italians who are going to build Jeeps in China.” It rated the claim “Pants on Fire” and quoted a Chrysler spokesman denying that Jeep manufacturing was being moved to China. But later, PolitiFact admitted that what its gumshoes called the “Lie of the Year” was the “literal truth.”
The Weekly Standard pointed out that “Romney’s ad never said Jeep was ‘outsourcing’ existing jobs. Again, a fair reading of the ad would be that it implied that Jeep was choosing to create new jobs overseas rather than in the U.S.” Further, Reuters reported after the election, Fiat’s unit Chrysler would produce 100,000 Jeeps in China (Media Research Center, Jan. 18, 2013).
PolitiFact sought to rebut the Weekly Standard, but only succeeded in harming itself, saying that the “Romney campaign was crafty with its word choice, so campaign aides could claim to be speaking the literal truth, but the ad left a false impression that all Jeep production was being moved to China” (Weekly Standard, Jan. 18, 2013).
Anytime you identify something as a “Pants on Fire” lie, then concede it’s the “literal truth, but …” there is a problem. After playing defense for Obamacare, PolitiFact stepped up to the plate and asserted that the president’s oft-repeated claim, “If you like your health care plan you can keep it” was the 2013 “Lie of the Year.” This came amid the four million cancellations sent to U.S. insurance consumers. Given the overwhelming problems that year, it would have been beyond laughable to name any other statement as the top lie. PolitiFact essentially had no choice but to stop defending the law.
But again, don’t forget that when candidate Obama was running for president in 2008, the website went out on a limb to falsely certify this very claim as true.
“in its article detailing why the President’s promise was a lie, PolitiFact neglected to mention an essential detail. In 2008, at a critical point in the presidential campaign, PolitiFact rated the ‘keep your plan’ promise as ‘True,’” Avik Roy wrote. “The whole episode, and PolitiFact’s misleading behavior throughout, tells us a lot about the troubled state of ‘fact-checking’ journalism” (Forbes, Dec. 27, 2013).
In 2014, the “Lie of the Year” ended up being less controversial: “Exaggeration about Ebola.” Perhaps the worst one could say about the conclusion is that “exaggeration” is by definition something short of a lie.
By 2015, the dishonor went to Donald Trump, the eventual Republican presidential nominee. The website singled him out and claimed 75 percent of his statements were “Mostly False,” “False,” or “Pants on Fire” on its Truth-O-Meter.
Then, in 2016, the winner of the dubious honor was “Fake News,” now referring to Internet lies and gossip presented as news stories, which often went viral on Facebook. PolitiFact said, “In 2016, the prevalence of political fact abuse— promulgated by the words of two polarizing presidential candidates and their passionate supporters—gave rise to a spreading of fake news with unprecedented impunity.”
PolitiFact awarded their “Lie of the Year” award in 2018 to the “online smear machine” that attempted to “take down Parkland students.” “The attacks against Parkland’s students stand out because of their sheer vitriol,” the piece explains. “Together, the lies against the Parkland students in the wake of unspeakable tragedy were the most significant falsehoods of 2018. We name them PolitiFact’s Lie of the Year.”2
“I want to be clear, I was not concerned that anything illegal was discussed,” said Tim Morrison, former NSC Senior Director for European Affairs who was on the July 25 call between the two leaders.
Morrison also testified that the transcript of the phone call which was declassified and released by the White House “accurately and completely reflects the substance of the call.”
For a time, Democrats sought to blame fake news for Hillary Clinton’s loss before President Donald Trump snatched the term to describe questionable reporting by the liberal mainstream media.
PolitiFact itself encourages people to unquestioningly accept its truth ratings through their marketing strategy. When judging a given politician, PolitiFact aggregates its ratings in a way that encourages people to look not at the truth value within any individual article with a speaker’s claim, but at the “larger” picture of the speaker’s commitment to the truth.
This method assumes this or that article might have a problem, but you have to look at the “big picture” of dozens of fact-checks, which inevitably means glossing over the fact that biased details do not add up to an unbiased whole.
A 2016 analysis by the Federalist would certainly show far more bias by Politifact at this point during the Trump administration, however it still shows an obvious bias. Here is their assessment:
(Start) Whenever you see the “Republicans Lie More Than Democrats” headline, whether it is in The Atlantic, the New York Times, Politico, or Salon, you’ll find that the data to support this claim comes from PolitiFact’s aggregate truth metrics. Using collective data instead of individual cases lets PolitiFact gloss over individual articles that delivered a questionable rating, comparable situations for two speakers that PolitiFact treated differently, biased selection of facts, and instances in which PolitiFact made an editorial decision to check one speaker over another.
We could list instance after instance in which we might feel PolitiFact was being unfair, but all those details are washed away when we look at the aggregate totals. And those totals certainly seem to run heavily against politicians with an “R” next to their names.
In the chart below, we’ve ranked politicians according to their “truthiness” as ranked by PolitiFact. Everything above the black line is ranked as “true” or “mostly true.” The individuals are ranked by their “truthiness” from left to right, making Bernie Sanders the most reliably truthful and Donald Trump the least.
A keen observer may notice a pretty clean differentiation. Democrats dominate the “more truthful” side and Republicans dominate the “liars” corner. Of course, the casual explanation is that Republicans lie more often than Democrats. Absent a detailed analysis and reclassification of thousands of articles, there is no good way to disprove this.
Unless, of course, you scrape PolitiFact’s website for these thousands of articles and run your own analytics on that data. If someone were to do this, what sort of patterns would become visible beyond the simple truth value totals?
I’m so very glad you asked, because the answer is a lot of fun. We found far too much to cover in a single article. Here we’ll look briefly at “truth averages” and see how PolitiFact ranks individuals and groups, followed by an analysis of how exactly they differentiate between Republicans and Democrats. In the next piece, we’ll examine how they choose facts and look specifically at how PolitiFact fact-checked the 2016 race.
The Truth, On Average
First we ranked truth values to see how PolitiFact rates different individuals and aggregate groups on a truth scale. PolitiFact has six ratings: “True,” “Mostly True,” “Half-True,” “Mostly False,” “False,” and “Pants on Fire.” Giving each of these a value from 0 to 5, we can find an “average ruling” for each person and for groups of people.
When fact-checked by PolitiFact, Democrats had an average rating of 1.8, which is between “Mostly True” and “Half True.” The average Republican rating was 2.6, which is between “Half-True” and “Mostly False.” We also checked Republicans without President-elect Donald Trump in the mix and found that 0.8 truth gap narrowed to 0.5.
The 2016 election season was particularly curious because PolitiFact rated Hillary Clinton and Tim Kaine as two of the most honest people among the 20 politicians we included in our data scrape (1.8 and 1.6, respectively) while Trump was rated as the most dishonest (3.2).
Using averages alone, we already start to see some interesting patterns in the data. PolitiFact is much more likely to rate Republicans as their worst of the worst “Pants on Fire” rating, usually only reserved for when they feel a candidate is not only wrong, but aggressively and maliciously lying.
All by himself, Trump has almost half of all the “Pants on Fire” ratings from the articles we scraped. Even outside of Trump, PolitiFact seems to assign this rating particularly unevenly. During the 2012 election season, PolitiFact assigned Mitt Romney 19 “Pants on Fire” ratings. For comparison, for every single Democrat combined from 2007-2016 the “Pants on Fire” rating was only assigned 25 times.
That doesn’t pass the sniff test, no matter which group you call your ideological home. But a sniff test isn’t data, so let’s dig deeper. Read more at TheFederalist.com
Verdict: Politifact is an honest and unbiased fact check service – True or false? PANTS ON FIRE!!!
A new scientific study that stunningly suggests the human race sprang from a single adult couple, as the Bible records, also suggests animals appeared at the same time, also as the Bible suggests. It was a major shock to evolutionary science when a sweeping survey of the genetic code showed the human race sprang from a single adult couple, such as an Adam and Eve. The research was led by the Rockefeller University and the University of Basel, Switzerland, and shocked all involved. “This conclusion is very surprising,” … Read More
Back in 2008, a news publication called Phoenix Times News published a story mocking people who believe in so-called “chemtrails,” calling the concept of geoengineering a “strong competitor for dumbest conspiracy theory ever.” There’s simply no such thing as chemical aerosols that are blasted from airplanes, and that remain suspended in the atmosphere, we were all continually told – with a constant emphasis on the alleged “ridiculousness” of such a notion. Well, all of that mockery came to a screeching halt ten years later, as mainstream media outlets … Read More
Referring to bank cards and visa for migrants, Prime Minister Viktor Orban said in a public radio interview on Friday that pro-migration forces consider European institutions as a “transport agency,” because they believe migration is in Europe’s interest. Orban said this was to Hungary’s detriment. Only after the European parliamentary election will the situation change, he added. He said that whereas the European Union justified repressive measures against European citizens by citing the fight against money laundering, the European Commission “is giving anonymous bank cards to people we … Read More
A former Clinton Foundation official who is now an independent director at a company which operates private schools in China has found himself embroiled in a bizarre child abuse scandal involving needles, pills, “brown syrup,” nudity, and sexual molestation, according to parents. The head of a Beijing kindergarten has been fired after China launched a nationwide investigation into a chain of private schools operated by RYB Education Inc. ($RYB) following claims of abuse at multiple locations. Parents report at least 8 toddlers with mysterious needle marks, while others … Read More
Abstract OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the effects of laptop computers connected to local area networks wirelessly (Wi-Fi) on human spermatozoa. DESIGN: Prospective in vitro study. SETTING: Center for reproductive medicine. PATIENT(S): Semen samples from 29 healthy donors. INTERVENTION(S): Motile sperm were selected by swim up. Each sperm suspension was divided into two aliquots. One sperm aliquot (experimental) from each patient was exposed to an internet-connected laptop by Wi-Fi for 4 hours, whereas the second aliquot (unexposed) was used as control, incubated under identical conditions without being exposed to the laptop … Read More
To Silence Wikileaks, #HillaryClinton Proposed Drone Strike on Julian Assange — report https://t.co/S7tPrl2QCZ — WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) October 3, 2016 Julian Assange and his free-speech brainchild Wikileaks were once lauded as global heroes of public service among United States politicians and policy makers. But by 2010, four years after its inception during the President George W. Bush administration, Assange and his organization were no longer considered lovable troublemakers and mavericks. A year into President Barack Obama’s first term, Wikileaks was suddenly considered an out-of-control free-speech Frankenstein wreaking havoc on … Read More
The Millennium hotel is an unusual spot for a murder. It overlooks Grosvenor Square, and is practically next door to the heavily guarded US embassy, where, it is rumoured, the CIA has its station on the fourth floor. A statue of Franklin D Roosevelt – wearing a large cape and holding a stick – dominates the north side of the square. In 2011 another statue would appear: that of the late US president Ronald Reagan. An inscription hails Reagan’s contribution to world history and his “determined intervention to end … Read More