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Fact-checkers tackle Mitt Romney's RNC speech; fact-checker-checkers caution readers

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  • DN Subscriber Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Aug. 31, 2012 5:35 p.m.

    I hope the "fact checkers" are getting geared up to scrutinize every word Obama or Biden speaks between now and November 6th.

    Given their past records for saying one thing and doing the exact opposite, or making no sense at all, respectively, the fact checkers will indeed be working overtime to bring their prevarications and malapropisms to the public's attention via the ever vigilant news media.

    Yeah, right. The liberal bias in most of the media is blindingly obvious to those who pay attention, but sadly remains undetected by millions of voters who pay scant attention to politics or politicians. They will continue to proclaim as false much of what Romney or Ryan say, regardless of the truth.

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    Aug. 31, 2012 6:07 p.m.

    So, the premise is that the definition of "apology" is subjective, suggesting that the Fact checker sites may be biased, and then you cite 4 pages of Karl Rove's opinion as a rebuttal?

    How about doing some real fact checking of your own instead of playing the exact same game you criticize in your article.

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    Aug. 31, 2012 6:21 p.m.

    And, facts do have degrees of truth or require context to be fully understood.

    Facts. Ronald Reagan lowered the top tax rate to 28%.

    Today's tax rate is 35% for the top earners.
    Reagan's tax rates are lower than today's.

    All factually correct statements.

    However, Reagan's top rate kicked in at earnings of $30,000.

    Today's rate of 35% starts on earnings well over $350,000.

    So, the rate is only one piece of pertinent information.

    In reality, going back to Reagan's Tax rate, with associated Tax brackets would be a HUGE tax increase.

    Fact. Today's EFFECTIVE Federal Income Tax rates are lower than they were under Ronald Reagan. (and quite a bit lower, at that)

    While we are at it, Today's EFFECTIVE Corporate tax rate is also much lower than it was under Reagan.

    Fact check THAT!!

  • one old man Ogden, UT
    Aug. 31, 2012 6:24 p.m.

    Oh, so the standard bearer of truth is none other than one of the most crooked political hacks in the history of America --- Karl Rove?

    Yeah.

    Sheeeesh!

  • staypuffinpc Provo, UT
    Aug. 31, 2012 6:42 p.m.

    I'm glad to have seen this article appear. Last night, I read the piece in the NYT about Ryan "throwing the facts out the window" in which they broke down his lies one by one. But, "fact" after fact, they failed to actually address any facts. It was an obvious attack on opinion and character more than anything. In some instances, they claimed Ryan was outright lying when, in their own analysis, he was telling the truth. What they really should have said was that, though truthful, Ryan was disingenuous in criticizing Obama for allowing a committee to fail when Ryan was part of the committee and that his actions allowed it to fail. Nothing he stated was false, though it was certainly a bit disingenuous. Funny thing is, by referring to opinion and grandstanding as facts, the NYT writer committed the very act he was really criticizing--disingenuity!

  • BarkforSark PROVO, UT
    Aug. 31, 2012 6:57 p.m.

    I'm disappointed because when I first discovered Politifact, I thought, "This is a great idea. Now I'll know what's true and what's not." But then I discovered that they weren't checking "facts," but rather "opinions." Romney's opinion is that Obama embarked on an apology tour, and he bases that opinion on Obama's own actions and words. The only way you can assign a "true" or "false" rating to his opinion is by looking at what it's based on, and whether it's reasonable for the average person to conclude the same. I think there are more than enough people who look at what Obama said and did and consider him to be "apologizing," whether he actually used the word "apologize" or not. So how can you say Romney's claim deserves a "false," much less "pants on fire" rating. All you're saying is that you disagree with how he has come to his opinion, but that's not being a "fact" checker.

  • DanO Mission Viejo, CA
    Aug. 31, 2012 7:28 p.m.

    staypuffinpc, far more than just NYT called Ryan's speech full of falsehoods, including Fox News.

  • There You Go Again Saint George, UT
    Aug. 31, 2012 7:33 p.m.

    It's not a lie, if you believe it (George Costanza)...

    easily morphs into...

    romney campaign vowing...

    we're not going to let our campaign be dictated by fact-checkers.

  • DSB Cedar Hills, UT
    Aug. 31, 2012 7:53 p.m.

    Paul Ryan got a "Pants on Fire" rating from Politifact for claiming that Obama promised that government intervention would keep open the GM plant in Janesville, WI. His claim was deemed False because Politifact found that Obama pledged to keep the plant "viable," not "open."

    This clearly show the bias of Politifact, and the insanely idiotic logic used to label Republicans as liars. It renders Politifact entirely intellectually unreliable as a resource for a rational debate. The "Pants on Fire" rating over the Apology Tour is another excellent example of their obvious agenda and lack of credibility.

    Seems we need a fact checker for the fact checkers.

    I'm still waiting for an explanation of how the GM plant in Janesville could be shut down, and still "viable."

  • Jack Aurora, CO
    Aug. 31, 2012 7:53 p.m.

    @DanO, it wasn't "Fox News", it was a commentator, a liberal commentator who labeled the speech "full of lies". The fact that she contributes to the Fox News Channel is relevant only in that she voiced her opinion there, it doesn't constitute an indictment of Ryan by Fox News.

  • rightascension Provo, UT
    Aug. 31, 2012 8:28 p.m.

    With this article, the Deseret News obsession with Romney has become laughable. I take from this article so0called that there are no facts just opinions. I also take from this piece that we must accept whatever the USA does as necessary, so it does not apologize. If I were to take those positions with my relatives, they would dismiss me as hogwash.

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    Aug. 31, 2012 8:46 p.m.

    The biggest value I find with fact-checkers is the research and information they provide on the topics/subjects they are fact-checking, including links to the information. They take the time to dig up the Bureau of Labor statistics or the text of the entire speech that newspapers are too lazy to report.

    Deseret News mentions Robert Rector as a "welfare expert" but doesn't identify that he is a research fellow at the conservative Heritage Foundation. This is what passes as "fact-checking" by Rector:

    Rector: "Moreover, HHS has made it clear that it will not accept waivers for new conservative policies. The agency’s guidance states that it will not approve policy initiatives that are “likely to reduce access to aid.” Translation: HHS will oppose any policy that reduces welfare caseloads. “

    This is what the HHS policy actually states:
    “The Secretary will not approve a waiver for an initiative that appears substantially likely to reduce access to assistance or employment for needy families.”

    Obama's remarks at various stops around the world could just as easily be framed as "criticizing" the countries he visits.

  • On the other hand Spanish Fork, UT
    Aug. 31, 2012 9:01 p.m.

    George W. Bush didn't know the first thing about diplomacy. He seemed not to realize that the United States had ever had allies, or that we needed any (other than Israel, of course). Barack Obama has had to clean up the mess Bush made, and he has done a pretty good job. Romney's repeated criticism of Obama's efforts to restore goodwill toward the US, together with Romney's own comments and actions during his recent tour abroad, strongly suggest he hails from the Bush school of foreign policy and that he would undo a lot of the good that Obama has been able to accomplish with our foreign allies.

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    Aug. 31, 2012 9:16 p.m.

    DSB - he couldn't keep the plant viable because it closed before he came into office. The transition between the Bush and Obama ears were actually quit presidential, and actually Bush still has maintained a good sense of dignity here and refused to be pulled into the ugliness game going on.

    But bottom line, once a plant is closed, it is pretty hard to keep it viable. What Obama did do was keep the plants at both GM and Chrysler open while Romney preferred to have the companies offered up to investment bankers (the very same ones we tax payers were feed tax dollars to to keep themselves above water) to be bought, sliced up, and dissected.

    Oh, and did Ryan also let everyone know that while he claims he was against TARP, he himself put in request for TARP funds for companies in his own district. Worked really good... you can complain all you want and yet still take advantage of the program.... Sounds like another group I know.

  • DSB Cedar Hills, UT
    Aug. 31, 2012 10:17 p.m.

    @UtahBlueDevil - you can read it yourself at Politifact:

    "...the article reported that Obama, who later provided an $80 billion auto bailout, had pledged to help keep the Janesville plant and others like it "viable." That's not quite the same thing as pledging keep the Janesville plant open. We find nothing in the article that he explicitly promised to keep it open."

    Ridiculously illogical by any standard, exposing Politifact's bias and agenda. I will admit my mistake, however, as they rated Ryan's comments "False," and not "Pants on Fire."

    Obama assured the people of Janesville that the bailouts would keep them "viable," but apparently not "open." Sounds like Obama making promises, or pledges, that he couldn't necessarily keep even if he wanted to. And, that his hope for Janesville, as with unemployment numbers, green industries, and bailout results, have no basis in reality.

    With Obama as President, coal mining area and towns that relied on NASA also found out how Obama keeps his promises. He doesn't. When he's campaigning, he'll say anything with no thought of ability or intention to follow through.

  • silo Sandy, UT
    Aug. 31, 2012 10:59 p.m.

    DSB

    From Politifact...

    "and more importantly, the Janesville plant shut down before he took office."

    in case you missed it...

    "and more importantly, the Janesville plant shut down before he took office."

    The plant was closed before Obama even had a chance to do anything to prevent it's closing. Perhaps Ryan should take that up with former President Bush?

  • DSB Cedar Hills, UT
    Aug. 31, 2012 11:17 p.m.

    @silo - in case you missed it, from Politifact, candidate Obama made "a statement of belief that, with government help, the Janesville plant could remain open."

    Also, in case you missed it from my prior post:

    "Obama assured the people of Janesville that the bailouts would keep them 'viable,' but apparently not 'open.'"

    To make it simpler for you to understand, Obama made assurances to people that proved to be wrong. The bailouts from Bush, that Obama said would keep the plant open or viable, and then implemented as President, neither kept the Janesville plant open, nor did they cause the plant to re-open, or become viable or any other terminology that means "we're employing people," when he became President.

    False assurances based on unfounded hope, just like most of Obama's promises.

  • DavidNL Holladay, UT
    Sept. 1, 2012 12:02 a.m.

    Who wants facts anyway, right? "The truth" is too complicated while opinions, strong assertions, confident proclamations, and "being right" is really -- winning at any cost -- is what matters most, especially in politics. So this is what politicians give us -- neat, tidy, easily digestible bits of info with an emotional center. Soundbites. Even if we could -- or would -- search for "political truth", if it rocked our boat too much, where would that leave us???

    Probably looking for the next soundbite to make it all good again.

  • The Rock Federal Way, WA
    Sept. 1, 2012 12:05 a.m.

    All I can say is that I remember Obama going on his apology tour.
    If liberals want to call it something else; well, that is their prerogative. Calling it an apology tour is my prerogative.

    Most so called "Fact Checking" organizations lean to the left. They are part of the propaganda machine.

    BTW: I am so sorry that liberals don't like Karl Rove. Bet the feeling is mutual.

  • Tyler Ray Taylorsville, UT
    Sept. 1, 2012 12:38 a.m.

    President Obama's statements were more than apologetic, they were contradictory and weak. How many "buts" were in those examples. he was doing too much addressing what he felt were imperfections of America's policies and decisions and instilled less confidence in America than anything. Stop focusing on the past and show what the future will bring. typical Obama: Blame past presidencts, the other party, Congress, etc. we've heard it for four years. Contrast that with Romney's message. We gave Obama a chance, he didn't deliver. let's move forward.

  • mtmanmc Colorado Springs, CO
    Sept. 1, 2012 1:12 a.m.

    FactCheck.org is made up mostly of Journalists. What proof do we have of these Journalists that they are in fact nonpartisan since this organization is local at University of Pennsylvania?
    I no longer take information just from Journalists. I read and listen to more than one source.

  • TA1 Alexandria, VA
    Sept. 1, 2012 5:22 a.m.

    Karl Rove - font of truth - I don't think so.
    Americans need to stop relying on one side or the other and start to take the time to make choices based on the best information they can discern, but then that world actually mean turning off talk radio (or TV) and actually doing some research before going into the voting booth (and that’s work not entertainment).

  • djc Stansbury Park, Ut
    Sept. 1, 2012 6:36 a.m.

    I read your article with a great deal of interest and was nodding my head in agreement with much of what you wrote until I came to the term "mainstream media". At that point, I discounted much of what you had written because you clearly laid your bias out for all to see. The term mainstream media seems to be a flag to show that the writer is a conservative and that she believes all professional recognized media is unfair to conservatives. The term is ridiculous and those who believe in a vast left-wing conspiracy on the part of the media are being deliberately mislead by a faux or false media which is in reality a propaganda arm of the Republican party. I just wish more people would recognize the difference between propaganda and news and not discount all news that they don't like.

  • sailhardy BOSTON, MA
    Sept. 1, 2012 6:46 a.m.

    Fact checkers these days need to be fact checked themselves. A fact checker accused Paul Ryan of lying in his speech. When I fact checked the AP Fact Checker, it turned out that its evidence was false information from a White House spokesperson (Stephanie Cutter). Did she lie? If I were a White House flack, I might say so, but let us be charitable and simply say she got it wrong. The Left's general m.o. is to sneer and condescend to its opposition with the predictable result that it infuriates them. The Right is little better.

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    Sept. 1, 2012 6:47 a.m.

    can't wait to see the fact checker results after the DNC. Yikes!!! Hard pressed to find ANY legit facts after this liberal love fest of lies. What a line up they have for the DNC with such soaring statesman and deep thinkers as Sandra Fluke and Eva Longoria!! Wow - top notch intellectual talent there!! How you can watch the DNC on a full stomach is beyond me.

  • DaveRL OGDEN, UT
    Sept. 1, 2012 7:09 a.m.

    Facts have never been a issue for Mitt, he makes up his own as he goes along, nothing new there. Now citing Karl Rove as a reputable source now that's new...it brings journalism to a new low.

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    Sept. 1, 2012 7:19 a.m.

    DSB... let me follow your logic here.

    You are more upset at the person who said he would take care of the patient, but the patient didn't make it until the doctor could get there, than you are at the one who created the environment where the patient got ill in the first place.

    Your solution is, turn control back over to the people who crated the circumstances where the plant closed, because in this case, Obama wasn't able to save a patient who was already dead by the time he got there.

    Do you not see how just illogical that is? And the thing is, the ones who created that caustic environment aren't saying they will change what cause the problem in the first place... they not only wanted to patient dead, they wanted to kill the whole family (GM) by denying them help when they needed it.

    And here is the best part. The reason Republicans wanted to kill GM was to kill the UAW, the theory being that if the UAW was dead, these blue color workers would all of a sudden vote Republican - despite the fact that their employer was shut down.

  • BYUalum South Jordan, UT
    Sept. 1, 2012 7:22 a.m.

    Go back and read the first post: DN Subcriber's well-written words and hold dems' feet to the fire as well after next week. Now, there would be some real talking points. Such a double standard in the media!

  • Owen Heber City, UT
    Sept. 1, 2012 7:24 a.m.

    If we could just start with a definition of "the truth" it would help these discussions. How about R.L. Stevenson's: "to tell the truth is not merely to state facts, but leave a true impression."

    It is not true that work requirements have been removed from welfare. It is not true that Obama does any more damage to Medicare than Ryan's proposal. Yet we hear it over and over. Obama's campaign is also playing politics by gaming ethics - overstating and understating - instead of personal ethics.

    The difference for me, personally, is that I expect more of Mitt Romney than I do of Obama when he says "I approve this message."

  • RG Buena Vista, VA
    Sept. 1, 2012 8:05 a.m.

    to On the other hand: Bush had a large coalition of countries with us before we went into Iraq. And, he had congressional approval. People seems to forget that. On the other hand, Obama had neither a coalition nor approval when he went into Libya, but the liberals don't seem to complain about that!

  • Mountanman Hayden, ID
    Sept. 1, 2012 8:09 a.m.

    Here is how liberals define truth: ”it depends on what is, is”. If you understand liberals, that makes perfect sense.

  • pragmatistferlife salt lake city, utah
    Sept. 1, 2012 8:27 a.m.

    It will be interesting to see what Democrats do in their convention. I hope they aren't afraid to take on Romneys' challenge of "are you better off than you were four years ago", because the answer for America is definitely yes. Four years ago we had an economy that was losing gdp growh at a rate of 9% per quarter, businesses were shedding hundreds of thousands of jobs a month, we were engaged in two foreign wars, losing American lives each week. Since then we've had positive gdp growth, a net gain in jobs, and we are out of one war. How does that not count for being better off?

  • theworm63 Downers Grove, IL
    Sept. 1, 2012 8:41 a.m.

    Wow, I wonder which candiate Jackie is supporting. Biased, maybe?

  • KellyWSmith Sparks, NV
    Sept. 1, 2012 8:50 a.m.

    I also remember the Apology Tour& of Obama and this author was just using the report by Karl Rove to show a date and reference point. Why discount this source when it is legitimate? Just because you don't like Karl Rove does not give you license to wipe away any of his comments. That is a problem with many of those on the Liberal and/or Ant-Mormon side of things: they think that an easy dismissal of anything in any way justifies the refusal to ignore it. Karl Rove is correct in his reference because it actually happened. I don't remember Mr. Rove telling me about this incident, I saw it on the CBS Evening News. I saw Mr. Obama deride and lower America's standing in the world. Because my memory is the same as referred by Mr. Rove, I now have better regard for his words and will pay more attention to what he says in many other areas of politics.

  • skeptic Phoenix, AZ
    Sept. 1, 2012 9:27 a.m.

    Kelly WSmith, It seems some posters are so ignorant of American and World history that they are shocked at the notion of the ugly American. But other nations and Americans are not so ignorant of the facts. America has made mistakes and miscarriage of justice and foreign policy (the same goes for most other nations also). President Obama did the right thing and a great service to better international relations by acknowledging past poor performance and encouraging better future performance. The best road to reform and improvement starts with honest evaluation of past performance.

  • DSB Cedar Hills, UT
    Sept. 1, 2012 9:31 a.m.

    @UtahBlueDevil - it's odd for you to question my logic when you seem unable to follow a simple narrative. Do you think Bush, as the doctor in charge, personally came to Janesville and closed the plant? Obama, as a Senator, and President Bush were both responsible for the bailouts, but it was Obama who assured the people of Janesville that government bailouts would save their plant, not Bush.

    My point has nothing to do with Bush or Obama being responsible for the plant closing. Neither of them were personally responsible for that. But, Obama is the one who thinks government intervention and tax dollars are the fix for everything.

    The point is, and hopefully I can finally make it simple enough for you, is:

    1. Obama assured that stimulus money would save the Janesville plant.
    2. Stimulus money did not save the Janesville plant.
    3. Obama was wrong whether it was his fault or not, revealing the ignorance of his hope for government resolutions.
    4. Paul Ryan's comments don't deserve a False rating from Politifact.
    5. Giving a False rating because Obama pledged to keep the plant "viable," but not "open" is absurd and exposes the bias of Politifact.

  • williary Kearns, UT
    Sept. 1, 2012 9:32 a.m.

    This is the new Republican party. You can anything you like, whether it's fact or fiction, and then just claim the independent fact checkers are wrong.

    Win at any cost.

    The party of suposed superior morals at work!

  • MormonDem Provo, UT
    Sept. 1, 2012 9:46 a.m.

    I don't know what the Deseret News is these days, but it sure isn't a newspaper any more. This is pathetic.

  • LetsDebate PLEASANT GROVE, UT
    Sept. 1, 2012 9:48 a.m.

    @williary

    This is the new Democratic party. You can stack the fact-checking outfits with people of a leftist worldview, and then just claim they are independent.

    Keep yourself blinded from your own bias at any cost.

    The party of supposed enlightenment at work!

  • 1aggie SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Sept. 1, 2012 9:51 a.m.

    Admitting a mistake and then pointing out my spouse's mistakes has never served as an apology in my house.

    From Dale Carnegie's book “How to Win Friends and Influence People”
    Be a Leader: How to Change People Without Giving Offense or Arousing Resentment
    1.Begin with praise and honest appreciation.
    2.Call attention to people's mistakes indirectly.
    3.Talk about your own mistakes before criticizing the other person.
    4.Ask questions instead of giving direct orders.
    5.Let the other person save face.

    A communications professor at the University of Illinois, studies presidential rhetoric/political language, said Obama used conciliatory language for diplomatic purposes, not apologizing.
    Lauren Bloom, business consultant, wrote “The Art of the Apology,” advising on when to apologize and how to do it, said Obama's didn't use the words "sorry" or "regret." "I think to make an effective apology, the words 'I'm sorry' or 'we're sorry' always have to be there.” “Obama's remarks were really non-apologies, and they're not good in business or personal relationships,” Bloom said. “The one area where they can be useful: international diplomacy.”

  • SoCalChris Riverside, CA
    Sept. 1, 2012 10:08 a.m.

    I love the way liberals believe they have won an argument just by spewing the name Karl Rove. Much easier than addressing any of the substance of what he says. Like him or not he is intelligent and does his homework.

    The examples Rove cites are verifiable and most of us remember them well. Describe them however you like. I consider them apologizes, and yes "fact-checkers" are mostly political hacks.

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    Sept. 1, 2012 10:31 a.m.

    I don't always agree with the ratings fact-checkers give, but almost always I learn valuable information.

    I find it very disturbing that the LDS church-owned newspaper would write this type of article. One would think Deseret News, above all other papers, would be supportive of efforts to sort fiction/truth from fact/lies. Nowhere in the article does it point out the benefits and value of fact-checkers. The article points out the Investors Business Daily claims that fact checkers don't provide balance which is not true. Most fact-check both sides, using conservative and liberal sources.

    Deseret News is just following the Fox strategy of discrediting anything that doesn't support/promote the conservative/GOP agenda. Many Republicans get most of their news/information from one source. Is this healthy for the future of our country and the LDS church? The LDS church sends missionaries out all over the world in hopes that people will have open, questioning minds/hearts, yet their newspaper has a narrow, one-sided message/focus.

  • staypuffinpc Provo, UT
    Sept. 1, 2012 10:39 a.m.

    @DanO, I said nothing of whether or not Ryan was right. In fact, I called him outright disingenuous. He criticized Obama for the same thing of which he was guilty. There is no lie in that, but there is deception. My criticism was of the NYT article, which, as I mentioned, I had read right when it came out. Read the article. The title and writing suggest blatant, outright, made-up lies. Point for point, they go through Ryan's falsehoods, but none of the things they criticize as being infactual are actually infactual. They're opinion, and they're passing off their opinion a factual rebuttal, which it is not.

    I regularly read fact-checks because I don't believe most politicians. There's a reason, though, that the fact-checkers are getting criticized on this one. There is a clear bias in the media, which in itself is ok if one is clear about it being bias and opinion. What's not OK is to pass bias as "fact." That is disingenuous.

  • Wisconsin Moderate GREENDALE, WI
    Sept. 1, 2012 10:52 a.m.

    The Janesville plant closed during the Bush administration, before President Obama took office. That's a fact. What else needs to be said?

  • Owen Heber City, UT
    Sept. 1, 2012 10:52 a.m.

    Articles like this are what lead many to believe statements of political neutrality by this paper's owners are merely lip service. When the " letter" is read to congregations in the next few months, half will roll their eyes and half will wink at each other.

    There are "facts" and there is "the truth." it is a that each of has lied. It leaves a false impression to call each other admitted liars. Political ads/speeches are intended to leave impressions. I expect Mitt's integrity to elevate him above the fray, otherwise his election will have been in vain.

  • Midwest Mom Soldiers Grove, WI
    Sept. 1, 2012 11:01 a.m.

    Here's substance for you:

    Obama visited the Janesville GM plant as a presidential candidate in February of 2008 where he told the workers that hybrid vehicles were America's future. Obama said:

    "The question is not whether a clean energy economy is in our future, it's where it will thrive. I want it to thrive right here in the United States of America; right here in Wisconsin; and that's the future I'll fight for as your President."

    The plant was idled in April of 2008, laying off some 750 employees by July of 2008. The last vehicle rolled off the line in December 2008, before Obama took office. Source: Wisconsin State Journal

    How a candidate's campaign trail encouragement translates into broken-promise causation before he was even sworn in is some "truthiness" that Romney and Ryan will have to explain. Or maybe the DN can do that for them.

    I expected more from good, Christian candidates. Certainly there are enough real issues to address. I did not expect the Deseret News to be so engaged in helping to deceive the electorate.

  • staypuffinpc Provo, UT
    Sept. 1, 2012 11:03 a.m.

    @Truthseeker, have you read the articles the DNews is criticizing? If you're going to call it one way, call it both ways. The fact-checking that is being criticized is nothing of the sort.

    For the record, I'm neither a Repub. nor a Demo., I'm an independent calling it how I see it. For all those claiming Obama's words are not apologies b/c he didn't use synonyms of such, consider how we would perceive it if Ahmadinejad, Putin or Chavez toured the world and used those same words to discuss their countries' past policies.

  • bullet56 Olympia, WA
    Sept. 1, 2012 11:21 a.m.

    I was glad to read the words of our President in this piece. It makes me proud to be an American again and I do not see his words as apologies. You might, and that is fine, in America; we can agree to disagree.

  • LetsDebate PLEASANT GROVE, UT
    Sept. 1, 2012 12:24 p.m.

    @bullet56 - although I disgree with your interpretation of Obama's comments, I respect that your opinion is reasonable. If you meant what you said, then you should agree with the message of the article. Politifact apparently does not believe "we can agree to disagree." Although many reasonable people interpret Obama's comments as an "Apology Tour," Politifact arbiters think everyone who believes that is basically believing outright lies, and denying indisputable facts, even thought we're dealing with opinions. As the article suggests, that demonstrates a bias with the fact checkers, and reduces their credibility.

  • jparry Provo, UT
    Sept. 1, 2012 1:33 p.m.

    There were far more serious untruths and misrepresentations in Mitt Romney's speech than what he said about Pres. Obama's apologies, and I expect this newspaper to report such matters, just as I expect that you will do so for Pres. Obama's speech next week. And there may, indeed, be a story that needs to be reported about fact checking the fact-checkers. But in that case, I expect this newspaper to assess the performance of the fact-checkers across the board--the fact-checkers in the Washington Post and elsewhere have been quite persuasive about a host of Romney's deceptive statements in the convention speech. Falsities perpetrated by both parties, including the candidates, is one of the most urgent news items of this campaign, and the press needs to be the truth-tellers about, rather than the apologists for, what the candidates say.

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    Sept. 1, 2012 2:01 p.m.

    e:Staypuffinpc
    I read the politifact articles, the Karl Rove article, the Robert Rector article, the Clive Crook article. As I said before, I don't always agree with politifact ratings but they do provide valuable information. Politifact in their critique of Romney's statement consulted communication experts, not political pundits and although I agree with their conclusion that Obama's speeches don't qualify as apologies perhaps I wouldn't have given it the rating--pants on fire that they do, because there is an element of subjectivity. I think Factcheck's approach is better in that they discuss/examine the facts/data and come to a conclusion but they don't have a particular rating system like politifact and the Washington Post do.

    If Chavez etc said the same things as Obama I would imagine the press would highlight Chavez's criticisms of the U.S., downplay his acknowledgment of mistakes, and most certainly the press(and Republicans) wouldn't characterize his remarks as an apology.

    btw, I was a registered Independent for over 30 yrs, at times voting on both sides of the aisle and have only been a registered Democrat the past 6 yrs.

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    Sept. 1, 2012 5:00 p.m.

    Has anyone of the people claiming a double standard here actually visited any of these fact check sites? They tear apart statements by the "liberals" equally, and yes, they will have plenty of fodder to work with this week as well. Stop playing the victimized here.

    Here is a novel thought. We don't the members of each party hold their own accountable for their honesty and integrity. Lying is lying. It is party independent. Stop giving people a pass to these people just because they are of the same party as you, on either side. Lying is. A bad trite in any leader.

    I get differences in opinion. I get differences in perspective. But there are clearly things said by both sides that are lies, and the acceptance of such behavior is most disappointing.

  • mark Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 1, 2012 6:17 p.m.

    Did the Deseret News really just print an article basically saying that there is no such thing as facts, only opinions? Yes, yes they did. Unbelievable.

    By the way, there is not one apology in all the examples given. Words really do have meanings. And apology does have a definition, no matter that the D-News, for some reason, wants you to think otherwise.

    You would think that people that actually use words for a living would be a bit more aware of this.

  • 1aggie SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Sept. 1, 2012 6:22 p.m.

    Does it bother any members out there just a little bit that one of the two political parties playing so fast and loose with the truth is now headed by a Mormon? When this is all over I wonder how we'll be viewed by the average American?

  • NeilT Clearfield, UT
    Sept. 1, 2012 8:18 p.m.

    Fact: The far right hates Obama. If you don't agree just listen to the rhetoric on talk radio. The day Obama took office Mitch McConne openly vowed to destroy his presidency. My opinion is the far right is terrified of Obama because he is a minority, perceived as being muslim and that means non-christian. Politics is about power and being in control. America's demographics are changing. Minorities are gaining poliitical power and that terrifies the far right. How many times have you heard the tea party followers attack the values of the poor, minorities and immigrants. America is changing and if the Republicans don't do more to reach out to women and minorities they are going to regret it. I am not an Obama apoligist. I am a conservative who is tired of the mean spirited and hateful rhetoric coming from the extremists in my party. Despite my dissapointment I am still voting Romney. I had expectations that Romney would run a more positive and honest campaign.

  • LetsDebate PLEASANT GROVE, UT
    Sept. 1, 2012 9:44 p.m.

    @NeilT - thanks for the biggest pile of baloney on the entire thread - baloney being altogether too mild a description, yet probably the most severe name the DN monitors would probably accept. Minority Republicans are treated like rock stars in the party. People hate Obama's efforts to "fundamentally transform" our country, which needs tweaking once in awhile but does not need to be fundamentally transformed.

    One individual, Mitch McConell, made one stupid comment, and partisan hacks have been beating half the country with it for 3 years as though he speaks for us all. Seriously, way past time for a new false outrage to beat the Republicans with. I, like Mitt Romney said, wanted Obama to succeed because I want America to succeed. I don't think I'm unique among Republicans.

    What are the values of the poor, minorities, and immigrants? I've never heard Tea Party members denigrate the poor, minorities, or legal immigrants, or their values. Seems to me you're swallowing a lot of swill from those with a vested interest in making sure Republicans are despised. A whole lot of baloney.

  • Owen Heber City, UT
    Sept. 1, 2012 11:22 p.m.

    Talk about baloney. "One individual, Mitch McConell, made one stupid comment, and partisan hacks have been beating half the country with it for 3 years as though he speaks for us all." just Google post inauguration republican meeting to see the list of 15 powerful legislators and others who vowed to sink this president during his inaugural ball. " We've got to challenge every single bill."

  • MoabUte Springville, UT
    Sept. 2, 2012 3:57 a.m.

    It is unfortunate that individuals have to politicize fact checker commentary. It really should boil down to this. Is what the politician saying a fair and accurate representation of the facts?
    If the answer is "NO" then we as citizens should demand ethical commentary from our elected officials. Instead what we do is say, "well, the other side does it" or "just another attempt by the liberal media to denigrate a conservative". I know both sides do it but this article is in response to Ryan's speech and it is worthy of derision. At least, it is misleading and intellectually dishonest. At worst, it is outright lying. We ALL should demand more from our politicians and, until we do, they will continue to pander to the zealots in our country that love nothing better than a good sounds bite regardless of merit.

  • LetsDebate PLEASANT GROVE, UT
    Sept. 2, 2012 10:27 a.m.

    @Owen - are you saying that Republicans plotted to regain political power after losing the White House to someone who promised to "fundamentally transform" our country? Wow - really big revelation there. Maybe they have to challenge every single bill because they don't want our nation to be fundamentally transformed. I say thank goodness they challenged every single bill.

    I know Democrats don't play any political games, and don't challenge every single idea from Republicans. Oh wait, there were those George Bush years, and Harry Reid will never bring a bill to the floor that has been sent from the Republican-led Congress.

    Baloney indeed.

  • SoCalChris Riverside, CA
    Sept. 2, 2012 12:19 p.m.

    I hate lying and propaganda in politics and I see it on both sides - vastly more of it on the left. There is a big difference between lying and expressing an opinion.

    In this entire thread I don't think I've read a suggestion of a better way to characterize Obama's statements around the world during his first few months as president, in which he pointed out what he considered shortcomings of the US. In context they sure seemed like apologies to me. Should it have been called "the United States has made mistakes in the past tour"? It's disingenuous to say he was not apologizing in my "opinion."

  • Sophie 62 spring city, UT
    Sept. 2, 2012 2:46 p.m.

    Gee, for a minute there I thought that the Deseret News was suggesting that people should check the facts against claims by the GOP. I had a momentary flare of hope, but it was doused when I understood what they were really saying: Fact-checkers are not to be trusted.

  • Sophie 62 spring city, UT
    Sept. 2, 2012 3:05 p.m.

    Anyone who believes that America is perfect and has always behaved perfectly out there in the world is pretty unrealistic. Americans and America have done some pretty great things, aiding other countries in many ways. But America and Americans have also made a lot of mistakes, some of them terrible and far reaching. Some of them accidental and some because of some very self-serving motives, not caring about the consequences as long as they get what they want. Other countries have done the same.

    Why be enraged and offended because Obama acknowledged that America hasn't always been perfect? It's the truth. He also pointed out that other countries are not perfect.
    It takes strength to tell the truth.
    If Bush had made these same statements, the people who are enraged now would have interpreted them differently.
    It's only because Obama said them that people are angry and offended.

  • JWB Kaysville, UT
    Sept. 3, 2012 4:08 p.m.

    The term fact-checkers may appear to have some truth to it but it is actually a form that is similar to statistics. Those people, especially in the Internet days have the ability to pull data from a variety of sources to show that the information is valid. The fact that that term exists is there for a specific reason, to allure people that don't do their own research to pull data to prove what they want to prove, whether it is valid or not.

    When politicians these days decide to be politicians, a lot of them believe they can do anything, whether it is truth or not, to get elected by people. In a time when very few go to the polls to vote, those type of politicians don't have to prove anything to those voters as those voters don't study and learn about people or issues.

    Others, who don't want the untruthful words to influence what people really value, integrity, honesty and character, then they dig into those statements or facts to study for others that don't do it. As my friend said 48 years ago, "Truth is truth, only the facts change"

  • Counter Intelligence Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 4, 2012 10:28 a.m.

    @silo
    "From Politifact...

    "and more importantly, the Janesville plant shut down before he took office."

    in case you missed it..."

    the plant closed in April 2009 - after Obama took office

    isn't it interesting the politicifact is actually political tool

  • HotGlobe SAN RAFAEL, CA
    Sept. 4, 2012 1:16 p.m.

    It's not just that the term "apology tour" is part of the big lie as there were no apologies. The other problem here is that if you look at what Obama said, it was all quite admirable. America has made mistakes and has been arrogant and he was trying to turn things around and be a better partner on the world stage. There should have been bi-partisan cheering. Instead, the attitude seems to be "never admit a mistake." That is stupid and dangerous.

  • MapleDon Springville, UT
    Sept. 4, 2012 4:20 p.m.

    It's interesting to me that the DesNews (which has a policy of not criticizing Pres Obama) has never--and will never--publish any fact check of anything Obama says. Nor will they ask the paramount question of its readers, "Are you better off today than you were four years ago?" As a news organization the DesNews, along with all other MSM, is absurd. This one-sided reporting and shaping of public opinion is offensive to any thinking person.

  • Mike in Cedar City Cedar City, Utah
    Sept. 4, 2012 4:34 p.m.

    Good Grief DN, you have to jump through so many hoops to punch up your boy. You and your minions are entitled to your own opinions but not your own facts. The factual truth is that Romney and the Republicans have deliberately created a fictional Obama, a straw man to strike down with multiple lies. Most of the responsible press has reported that reprehensible attack. But, your obvious bias will not let you do objective journalism How sad, how unprofessional.

  • FazaPops Ponte Vedra, FL
    Sept. 4, 2012 4:46 p.m.

    I've lived in Washington DC most of my adult life. My wife was the secretary to a former cabinet member. I've been to way too many political functions in my life. I have news for you. I've tried red Kool-Aid. I've tried blue Kool-Aid. They're both Kool-Aid. They both pretty much taste the same. And they're both bad for you. Drink up.

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    Sept. 4, 2012 6:50 p.m.

    Debunking the fact checkers. So basically the DN is saying "don't believe anyone anymore".

    Here is an idea, why don't the candidates focus more on what they can and will do (or intend to do), rather than spending 90 percent of their calories on trying to explain the opposition.

    Worf actually had a good comment a while ago. Lets treat this as a job hire excursive. Now those of you who have actually done hiring... how many people have you brought on board that spend 80 percent of their interview trash talking their other applicants. Anyone?

    So why do we tolerate it from these men? Can anyone explain that to me?