Friday, January 20, 2012

A Little Storm

Well, that got some attention. The account of my interaction with PolitiFact made a little tour of the interwebs. Here are a few highlights, for those keeping score.

Scott Johnson at Powerline wrote a post called "A PolitiFact Case Study," which reviewed some previous stories about fact checking organizations.

Jonah Goldberg at National Review Online's The Corner found the story "pretty amazing," and called it, "The Lameness of PolitiFact."

Ace of Spades wondered if this meant 'the end of PolitiFact'. Hot Air and Rand Simberg followed a similar line.

John Nolte at Andrew Breitbart's Big Journalism also criticized PolitiFact based on the post.

Politico's Dylan Byers noted the affair, and kindly agreed with my opinion on the matter. Of note, Byers asked whether or not Jacobson consulted any other experts. For the record, he did contact about a dozen other people, some I know and can verify are much smarter than me (faint praise, but still). Bill Adair at PolitiFact chose to respond to the Politico post, and did so here, defending their "pants on fire" determination.

The most detailed response to the whole episode thus far came from Jason Linkins at Huffington Post, "Politifact Hands Mitt Romney Premature 'Pants On Fire'." Linkins filled in the context of Romney's statements from the debate, and concluded that, "Maybe Romney's pants are on fire. But Politifact hasn't yet done the work to make that determination."

That seems right to me, at least on this issue. Because I was not trying to show up the folks at PolitiFact or defend or attack Governor Romney. I thought it was an interesting look into how a fact checking group like PolitiFact worked in one instance. Since I thought their conclusion in this instance went too far, I figured my different perspective was worth sharing.

Thanks for all the links and reading!

UPDATE: A few more links and comments have appeared in the last couple days.

Andrew Sullivan blogged about the issue here. A similar view to Sullivan's can be found in this post at Outside the Beltway.

Ted Bromund, one of the experts quoted in the PolitiFact piece, gave his take at Commentary's Contentions blog. More detail from Bromund can be found here at PolitiFact Bias.

Ed Driscoll at Pajamas Media also took a look, and Verum Serum had a link.

Finally, Mark Hemingway at the Weekly Standard, who has looked at PolitiFact for a while, wrote about the issue here. (Incidentally, it seems that Hemingway is the first to start the trend of spelling my name as "Bruschino," which was picked up by a few others. It is a common mistake, maybe driven by the Rossini opera that is often spelled both ways. But in our branch of the family, we spell it "Bruscino.")


As long as you are here, you might as well go buy my book!: A Nation Forged in War: How World War II Taught Americans to Get Along. If you would like to know what it is all about, Michael Barone reviewed it for Claremont Review of Books.

If you want to read something for free that covers military history and politics, I would recommend "Another Vietnam," my CRB essay on the tired debates and overuse of the Vietnam War. (Here is my page of essays for Claremont.) A little more historical in focus is an essay about Saving Private Ryan and the memory of World War II.

1 comment:

Anonymous said... also were linked at The Weekly Standard's blog...

...not in-depth on the issue, but kudos to you.