Allipedia Editor: Do you wonder about the news media's ability to get the facts straight? Well this articles shows you that YOU SHOULD! "Big Brother" is watching you and Big Brother is the deceitful media.
Walter Kronkite and Edward R Murrow would turn over in their graves to see this sad state of the media!
Wash Post Repeatedly Botches Fact Check of Trump’s State of the Union Address
By James D. Agresti February 8, 2019
Two days after airing a Super Bowl commercial that depicts journalists as people of great importance and integrity, the Washington Post published an error-ridden fact check of President Trump’s State of the Union address. Written by Glenn Kessler, Salvador Rizzo, and Meg Kelly, it contains an array of half-truths, straw men, and outright falsehoods.
The State of the Southern Border
During his address, Trump said: “The lawless state of our southern border is a threat to the safety, security, and financial wellbeing of all America.” In retort, the Post writes: “By any available measure, there is no new security crisis at the border.”
That is a straw man argument, or a rebuttal to a point that wasn’t made. Trump did not say this is a “new” crisis. In fact, he portrayed it as a longstanding problem by saying, “Year after year, countless Americans are murdered by criminal illegal aliens.”
Trump’s claim is correct. A 2011 Government Accountability Office study of 249,000 non-citizens in U.S. prisons and jails during 2003 to 2009 found that they had been arrested for 25,064 homicide-related crimes committed in the U.S. throughout their criminal careers. This isn’t even a full count because the study:
examined only “a portion of the total population of criminal aliens who may be incarcerated” in the U.S.
doesn’t include homicides that didn’t result in arrests, which comprise about 40% of all murders in the U.S. and higher rates for murders by minorities.
Like most government crime data, the study doesn’t isolate legal non-citizens from illegal ones, but legal immigrants must pass full criminal background checks and are very law-abiding. Thus, the vast bulk of these murderers were undoubtedly in the U.S. illegally.
The Post also tries to refute Trump’s statement about the dangers of open borders by implying that visa overstays are a greater threat. According to the Post, border barriers won’t stop “travelers overstaying their visas,” and these are “far more” common “than southern border apprehensions.” That argument is often used by activists and the media, but it is a classic half-truth. This is because it ignores the crucial fact that visa entrants are screened for criminality and other risks, while illegal border crossers are not.
Under federal law, “aliens” who pose threats to the public are “ineligible to receive visas and ineligible to be admitted to the United States.” This includes, for example, foreigners who:
have committed serious crimes.
are drug abusers or addicts.
have dangerous communicable diseases or mental disorders.
are “likely … to become primarily dependent on” government welfare.
In stark contrast, illegal border crossers evade all of these standards and the vetting that is done to enforce them. Hence, the Post’s comparison of the numbers of illegal border crossers to visa overstays is irrelevant to the point that Trump raised, which is the safety and wellbeing of Americans.
Moreover, the Post’s numbers are deceitful. First, they downplay the scale of illegal border crossings by counting only “apprehensions.” This overlooks all illegal border crossers who are not caught. Second, they exaggerate visa overstays by failing to account for visitors who leave the U.S. after their visas expire.
Correcting just the second of these figures overturns the Post’s claim that overstays are “twice the number of southern border apprehensions.” The Post writes: “In fiscal 2017, the Department of Homeland Security reported 606,926 suspected in-country overstays, or twice the number of southern border apprehensions.” What the Post neglects to reveal is that hundreds of thousands of these visitors left in the following months.
The Department of Homeland Security hasn’t yet published the full data for 2017, but the same report containing the Post’s figure of 606,926 provides data from 2016 that proves the point. At the end of that fiscal year, 628,799 people who were supposed to leave the U.S. had not. However, by May of 2018, only 340,377 or about half of these people remained. This is lower than the “408,870 southern border apprehensions” reported by the Post, thus obliterating their entire narrative.
Notably, visitors who temporarily overstay their visas are not immigrants, who by definition, are people who leave “one country to settle permanently in another.”
In summary, Trump’s statements about lawlessness at the border are consistent with the facts. Yet, the Post’s fact checkers have turned reality on its head by misrepresenting his words, using fallacious arguments, and misconstruing data.
New York’s Late-Term Abortion Law
In his speech, Trump said: “Lawmakers in New York cheered with delight upon the passage of legislation that would allow a baby to be ripped from the mother’s womb moments from birth.” The lawmakers did cheer with delight, but the Post claims this law “would not” permit such abortions because the bill states:
that a health-care practitioner “may perform an abortion when, according to the practitioner’s reasonable and good faith professional judgment based on the facts of the patient’s case: the patient is within twenty-four weeks from the commencement of pregnancy, or there is an absence of fetal viability, or the abortion is necessary to protect the patient’s life or health.”
Contrary to the Post, the law’s language accords with Trump’s statement. This is because its final provision permits abortions at any stage if “necessary to protect” a woman’s “health.” As defined by the Supreme Court’s rulings in Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton, “health” includes “physical, emotional, psychological, familial” factors, including the “stigma of unwed motherhood,” the work of “child care,” and “the distress, for all concerned, associated with the unwanted child.” This expansive and subjective definition of health provides broad leeway to perform abortions in practically every case.
Like Roe and Doe, the New York law leaves the determination of “health” to anyone licensed to perform abortions. The implication of this is clear from the following words of abortionist Warren Hern, author of “the nation’s most widely used textbook on abortion standards and procedures.” He declared: “I say every pregnancy carries a risk of death,” and “I will certify that any pregnancy is a threat to a woman’s life and could cause grievous injury to her physical health.”
Again, Trump’s statement is true, and the Post’s is false.
The Rise and Fall of ISIS
Trump also stated: “When I took office, ISIS controlled more than 20,000 square miles in Iraq and Syria—just two years ago. Today, we have liberated virtually all of the territory from the grip of these bloodthirsty monsters.” According to the Post, this is “technically correct” but:
“The group was far weaker a decade ago when U.S. forces last withdrew from Iraq.”
Within a week of taking office, Trump ordered the Secretary of Defense to “develop a comprehensive plan to defeat ISIS.” As a result of this, then-Defense Secretary James Mattis explained that Trump made “two significant changes” to Obama’s policies:
First, he delegated authority to the right level to aggressively and in a timely manner move against enemy vulnerabilities. … [N]o longer will we have slowed decision cycles because Washington D.C. has to authorize tactical movements on the ground.
Secondly, he directed a tactical shift from shoving ISIS out of safe locations in an attrition fight to surrounding the enemy in their strongholds so we can annihilate ISIS.
Obama, on the other hand, micromanaged the battle against ISIS, thus impeding the effort. As the Daily Beastreported in a December 2015 article entitled “Pentagon Insiders: ISIS War Plan is ‘Not Working’,” a defense official explained, “Our hands are tied. You want us to do more, then go talk to those guys across the river,” meaning the White House. Likewise, the Los Angeles Times reported in 2017:
“President Obama was so deeply involved in military operations that his first three Defense secretaries all complained, sometimes bitterly, about what they considered White House micromanagement.”
“Senior Pentagon officials and military officers who often chafed under Obama’s centralized decision making have welcomed the shift [to Trump], saying it has freed them to carry out operations based on military, and not political, considerations.”
Retired admiral and NATO commander James Stavridis stated: “The idea of the 10,000-mile screwdriver from Washington making decisions for a field commander, as has been the case over the past decade, is flawed.”
Obama’s former defense secretary Robert M. Gates wrote: “The controlling nature of the Obama White House and the staff took micromanagement and operational meddling to a new level.”
Yet, the Post creates a misleading impression that Obama is mainly responsible for decimating ISIS, when in fact, he played a major role in allowing their rise to power and sometimes hampered progress in the fight against them.
In numerous ways, the Post’s fact check fails to meet the paper’s own “Standards and Ethics,” which declare:
“No story is fair if it omits facts of major importance or significance. Fairness includes completeness.”
“No story is fair if it includes essentially irrelevant information at the expense of significant facts. Fairness includes relevance.”
“No story is fair if it consciously or unconsciously misleads or even deceives the reader. Fairness includes honesty—leveling with the reader.”
In short, a multi-million dollar Super Bowl ad is a poor substitute for quality journalism.
Junk science is faulty scientific data and analysis used to advance special interests and hidden agendas.
Examples of special interests include:
The media may use junk science to produce sensational headlines and programming, the purpose of which is to generate increased readership and viewership. More readers and viewers mean more revenues from advertisement. The media may also use junk science to advance personal or organizationsl social and political agendas.
Personal injury lawyers, sometimes referred to simply as trial lawyers (as in the American Association of Trial Lawyers or ATLA), may use junk science to extort settlements from deep-pocketed businesses or to bamboozle juries into awarding huge verdicts.
Social and political activists may use junk science to achieve social and political change.
Government regulators may use junk science to expand regulatory their authority, increase their budgets o advance the political agenda of elected officials.
Businesses may use junk science to bad-mouth competitors’ products, make bogus claims about their own products, or to promote political or social change that would increase sales and profits.
Politicians may use junk science to curry favor with special interest groups, to be politically correct or to advance their own personal political beliefs.
Individual scientists may use junk science to achieve fame and fortune.
Individuals who are ill (real or imagined) may use junk science to blame others for causing their illness. Individuals may also use junk science to seek fame and fortune.
CAUTION: Being wrong is not the same as being guilty of junk science.
The scientific method calls for trial-and-error until the truth is determined. More than likely, this means many trials and many errors. Scientists learn from their errors. So wrong science is part of the scientific method. (See Junk Science Judo, pp. 43-44)
Wrong science becomes junk science only when its obvious or easily-determined flaws are ignored and it is then used to advance some special interest.
What is JunkScience.com?
Since April 1, 1996, JunkScience.com has led the fight against junk science, including being named:
a “Hot Pick” by Science, April 1998: Vol. 280 no. 5361 p. 171., which noted: “Self-appointed bad science debunker Steve Milloy skewers studies on everything from the risks of diet drugs to global warming on The Junk Science Home Page (http://www.junkscience.com/). Although Milloy’s acerbic wit makes some researchers’ blood boil, others find many of his points valid—or at least entertaining.
Who publishes JunkScience.com?
JunkScience.com is published by JunkScience.com, Inc. It is edited by Steve Milloy.
Who is Steve Milloy?
Steve Milloy is a recognized leader in the fight against junk science with more than 25 years of accomplishment and experience. Credited with popularizing the term “junk science,” Milloy is the founder and publisher of JunkScience.com and, from 2000-2009, wrote the popular “Junk Science” column for FOXNews.com. He is an expert on energy, environmental and public health issues, a public affairs consultant, author, TV/radio commentator and public speaker. Milloy was trained in natural sciences, biostatistics, law and securities regulation. He has also been an attorney for the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and a broker-dealer; and a registered securities principal, investment fund manager, non-profit executive, print/web columnist on science and business issues, and coal company executive. Milloy served on the Trump EPA transition team.
Choices in Risk Assessment: The Role of Science Policy in the Environmental Risk Management Process, Regulatory Impact Analysis Project (lead author), 1994 (reprint coming soon)
Mr. Milloy has authored over 600 articles/columns published in major newspapers/web sites, including the Wall Street Journal, Investor’s Business Daily, FoxNews.com, Financial Times, National Post (Canada), USA Today, Los Angeles Times, Washington Times, New York Post, New York Sun and other print and web outlets.
B.A. in Natural Sciences, Johns Hopkins University;
Master of Health Sciences (Biostatistics), Johns Hopkins University School of Hygiene and Public Health;
Juris Doctorate, University of Baltimore; and
Master of Laws (Securities regulation) from the Georgetown University Law Center.
The following notable individuals and/or organizations have endorsed Mr. Milloy’s work:
Pre-eminent Scientists and Public Health Heroes
Philip Abelson, Phd, Editor, Science, 1962-1984, winner of the National Medal of Science, Co-discoverer of Neptunium. “… Milloy is one of a small group who devotes time, energy and intelligence to the defense of truth and science. His current book deserves widespread reading, quotation and responsive action,”‘ from the back cover of Junk Science Judo.
Donald H. Henderson, M.D., Dean, Johns Hopkins School of Public Health, 1977-1990, Director, UN Global Smallpox Eradication Program, National Medal of Science. “(Milloy’s Silencing Science is) a perceptive and eminently readable book… remarkable insights into the manipulation of science for other than laudable ends,” from the back cover of Silencing Science.
Frederick Seitz, PhD, First President, National Academy of Sciences. “This valuable book (Junk Science Judo) deals in a thorough manner with one of the serious scientific problems of our times, the intentional distortion of the methods of science in attempts to reach conclusions that are not justified by qualified scientific research…,” from the back cover of Junk Science Judo.
Statesmen & Business Leaders
Steve Forbes, President and Chief Executive Officer of Forbes. “Green Hell is the `inconvenient truth’ on extremist, growth-killing environmentalism. A must-read for those interested in keeping America free and prosperous,” from the back cover of Green Hell. About the Free Enterprise Action Fund: “… it’s precept is a sound one,” from “Fact and Comment,” Forbes, April 24, 2006.
Jonathan Hoenig, CapitalistPig Asset Management. “Green Hell… is a brash and gutsy repudiation of the environmental dogma now integrated into almost every aspect of modern life… Throughout this bold, tightly written, well-researched book, Milloy illustrates the overriding goal of the Green movement: Not to preserve nature for man, but to protect nature from man. Green Hell astutely unmasks the dangerous ramifications of that philosophy,” from Not Easy — or Smart — Being Green, May 9, 2009.
Vaclav Klaus, President of the European Union and President of the Czech Republic. “(Green Hell) describes why the world can’t afford to fall for global warming alarmism and environmental hysteria. Steve Milloy shows how to avoid the environmentalists’ vision of our future,” from the back cover of Green Hell.
Barron’s. (Green Hell is a) “convincing book,” from Big Questions, Five Good Answers, February 5, 2011.
Fred Barnes, Executive Editor, the Weekly Standard. “Green Hell explains why Americans can’t afford to fall for Al Gore’s `the debate is over’ line on global warming. While we’re all for the environment, Green Hell explains why we need to oppose the environmentalists,” from the back cover of Green Hell.
Neil Cavuto, Fox News. “Steve Milloy wrote the definitive book on [modern environmentalism]…”, September 1, 2011. “[Milloy] fill[s] a valuable role [debunking junk science], October 31, 2012.
Peter Foster, National Post (Canada) columnist: “‘Thank Gaia for Steve Milloy…,” from “Breaking out of green hell”, June 19, 2009.
Daniel Gross, Slate. “Milloy… made a spectacle at the annual meeting of Goldman Sachs,” from “Thank you for investing,” Slate.com (May 4, 2006)
Investor’s Business Daily. “… so long as (the corruption of science) continues, it’s a threat to future discoveries of real merit as well as to our freedoms. Daylight helps, as does transparency-encouraging critical websites, such as Steve Milloy’s junkscience.com,” from a A Banner Day for Junk Science, January 6, 2011.
Nuclear Street:“Sometimes a guy has to step back, take a long deep breath and reassess everything he thought he knew as fact. Some people conduct this exercise without even thinking, critically examining all that floats their way with the dispassionate eyes of an objective observer. Christopher Columbus did it. Galileo Galilei did it. Charles Darwin did it. Albert Einstein did it. And the world has not been the same since. Now, Steve Milloy does it…,” from NS Book Review of Green Hell, July 2, 2009.
Charles Payne, FOX News. ‘Insightful.’ January 30, 2015.
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. “Kudos to JunkScience.com’s Steve Milloy for debunking suspect blame-mankind research behind demonization of humanity’s mercury emissions,” from … Vapors over vapors, April 21, 2011.
Popular Science. “… made an impact,” from “The Battle,” July 2012.
Rolling Stone. Milloy is a “leading debunker” of global warming alarmism, from the November 17, 2005 issue.
John Stossel, correspondent, ABC News and Fox Business News. “I wish Junk Science Judo had been available when I was doing daily consumer reports. It hits the nail on the head about the media’s role in health scares and scams. I wish all consumer and reporters would read it,” from the back cover of Junk Science Judo.
Washington Post. Junkscience.com is “popular.” (Feb. 21, 1999, October 12, 1999).
RepublicanAmerican (Waterbury CT). “The invaluable Steve Milloy…,” (from “Asthma Illusions Fading,” January 15, 2013).
Juliet Eilperin, Washington Post. JunkScience is “well read.” (Twitter, February 18, 2013).
Kelly Vance, East Bay Express. Milloy is one of the “slickest” deniers.” (March 10, 2015).
Inside Climate News. Milloy is on the ‘Who’s Who List of Climate Denialists.’ March 12, 2015.
Catholic Online. Milloy is an “A-list climate change denier.” March 15, 2015.
Linda S. Birnbaum, Director, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences & National Toxicology Program. Milloy has “obvious dedication to scientific integrity,” from a personal letter, June 21, 2012.
Jane Orient, Executive Director, Association of American Physicians and Surgeons. “[Milloy] has written so eloquently about rational risk assessment, debunked damaging myths,” from “Investing in Sin,” The New Republic (July 3, 2006).
Marc Morano, ClimateDepot.com. “(Milloy is) the godfather,” from This Man Wants to Convince You Global Warming Is a Hoax, Esquire, March 30, 2010.
Dick Morris, Fox News commentator and political consultant: “Regardless of whether you believe global warming is a fraud, the fact is that the current depression, the past spike in oil prices, and the coming technology of electric cars are all going to solve whatever problem exists. Liberals want to use climate change as an excuse to take over the economy and regulate everything and this book exposes their plans,” from the back cover of Green Hell.
Penn Gillette of Penn & Teller. “(Silencing Science) is a way funny book written by heroes,” from the back cover of Silencing Science.
Rich Trzupek, FrontPageMag.com. “…Milloy is a hero. Using his website, junkscience.com, to deliver his message, Milloy has been a key soldier in the front lines of the battle to maintain the kind of healthy skepticism that is a critical component of scientific endeavor. It’s not overstating the case to say that Milloy, along with Climate Audit’s Steve McIntyre and Joe Bast’s Heartland Institute, laid the groundwork for an increasingly skeptical public to ask the tough, uncomfortable questions that are making global warming zealots squirm…”, from “The Heretics”.
Adam Kanzer, Domini Social Investments. Amazed at the media attention the tiny Free Enterprise Action Fund was able to muster, Kanzer said, “What other $5 million investment fund is getting press? They don’t even have a ticker symbol.
John Ehrenfeld/The Blue Route. No climate denier is “more dangerous than Steven Milloy… the disturbingly credible Steven Milloy.” (November 1, 2014)
Media Appearances, Speeches, and Other Activities Mr. Malloy Has appeared on local, national and international television and radio including: ABC’s World News Tonight with Peter Jennings and Good Morning America
Media Appearances, Speeches, and Other Activities Mr. Malloy Has appeared on local, national and international television and radio including: ABC’s World News Tonight with Peter Jennings and Good Morning America; CCTV’s The Heat; CNBC’s Kudlow & Co. and SquawkBox; CNN’s Crossfire, Glenn Beck and Talk Back Live; CNNfn; CNN International’s Insight; MSNBC’s News with Brian Williams; FOX Business Channel’s Bulls & Bears, Cavuto, Dagen & Connell, Freedom Watch, Lou Dobbs, Money with Melissa Francis and Varney & Co.; FOX News Channel’s Glenn Beck, Fox Report with Shepard Smith, Fox and Friends, The O’Reilly Factor, Special Report with Brit Hume, Red Eye with Greg Gutfeld, and Your World With Neal Cavuto; Comedy Central’s The Daily Show; National Public Radio’s Talk of the Nation, the Glenn Beck Program, the G. Gordon Liddy Show, the Dennis Miller Show and many other national and local television and radio programs.
Has testified on risk assessment and Superfund before the U.S. Congress and has lectured before numerous organizations.
Was a featured panelist at the Wall Street Journal‘s first ECO:nomics conference in 2008; and
Was a member of the judging panel for the 2004 American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Journalism Awards: Online Category’.