Friday, September 19, 2008

Don't Spread Lies Like the "Obama's 50 Lies"

If you visit lots of chat groups and blogs like I do, you have probably come across the widely circulated list of "Obama's 50 lies." With this being the season of extreme partisanship, it is easy to believe the worst about your opponent. I researched the list to see if it was something I wanted to repost. I discovered the list is simply not true. In some cases, the person who compiled the list claims Obama said things that there is no record of him ever saying. In other cases, what is claimed to be a lie is in fact true. In some cases the items on the list may be open to alternative interpretations of events, or be opinions, or simply harmless slight exaggerations.

As an example of one of the lies, the list says the following:
"Father was a goat herder- Liar, he was a privileged, well educated youth, who went on to work with the Kenyan Government."

Snopes points out that these attributes are not mutually exclusive and Obama's father was all three of these things at one time. Obama's biography states the his father was the son of a prominent farmer and an elder in his tribe and as a youth he herded goats. But it also says that he won a scholarship to study in Nairobi and then he was selected to attend a university in America. There is nothing to this supposed lie.

The internet is a great thing. It has put more information in the hands of more people than anytime in history. It has changed the political landscape and lessened the influence of the liberal mainstream press. Unfortunately, however, lies and rumors spread like wildfire in the blogosphere. Please, before you pass along something you read in a chat group or something someone emails you, check it out. It is not that hard to do. Here are four sources for verifying almost any thing:
Urban Legends
Hoax Busters
Fact check

Please save these as a "favorites" and use them to verify before you pass along a rumor.

I certainly do not want to see Barack Obama elected President, but the truth matters. I think Obama's relationship with 60's radical William Ayers and his radical pastor Jeremiah Wright should be exposed. There is enough to expose about Obama without making stuff up. Just as the left has spread vicious lies about Sarah Palin and her banning of books and other non-sense, some on our side of the political divide have been guilty of spreading lies about Obama. Unfortunately, it seems there have been more liars on our side than on the other side. Both group of liars are to be condemned. Please before you pass on something you get in an email or read in a chat group, check it out. All is not fair in love and war and politics; the truth is important.

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  1. Personally, I'm sick that both Obama and McCain have shamelessly produced Spanish campaign commercials that are 100% outright lies. Fox News' Bill O'Reilly called them both on that last night. I can't say that MSNBC did the same thing.

    I am so disappointed in our presidential candidates and our government and finger pointing.

    At least Sarah Palin wanted to Ban Star Wars and Star Trek and The Lord of the Rings! ;)

  2. I'm bookmarking these favorites. I knew about factcheck, but not the others. I agree, it's frustrating to read articles that are more about the author's opinion than the candidate they are writing about. And frustrating that the candidates lie about each other, and themselves. Mitt Romney was the ultimate on this. He's the master chameleon.
    It's hard getting to what's real. Was politics always like this? I'm an entrenched Democrat for many reasons, but I would still like to hear the truth on things.

  3. I agree with the sentiments posted here. There are far too many important issues that need to be discussed than to go back and forth with the slanders. Like you, Matthew, I too was disappointed to hear about what both candidates were doing with the Spanish language ads. Both were playing fast and loose with the truth, assuming that it wouldn't get mainstream media coverage because they couldn't/wouldn't broadcast the ads along with the coverage.

    To Mr. Williams, I will say that I believe the Ayers/Wright associations have been examined very thoroughly, ad nauseum in fact. From a strictly strategic standpoint, it's unfortunate for McCain that these were given so much scrutiny during the primary season, as I don't know if he can get much traction from them now. A 527 did put out an Ayers ad, and the McCain campaign put out an Rezko ad, so we'll see...