Sunday, November 6, 2011

Fact vs. Truth

Being biased is usually fairly innocuous. Bias toward a sports team can lead to a beer gut and yelling at the TV. Bias toward a comicbook superhero can lead to being a nerd and a 40 year-old virgin. Bias toward a political party can lead to, well, yelling at the TV.

However, being biased to an extreme, just like anything in its extreme form, can be dangerous…

You could lose all your savings and your child’s college fund betting on your favorite sports team. You could dress up like a superhero and patrol the streets looking for crime and get your ass kicked. This is real.

Or when it comes to politics, you could vote against your own best interests by blindly following the words but not the actions of your chosen party, which only leaves you a misinformed idiot and worse off for your efforts. An example would be for you to vote to reduce rich peoples’ taxes because you were told that when rich people do well, everybody does well according to the philosophy of “trickle down economics.” But according to all statistical evidence, only rich people benefit from this economic philosophy and it hurts the middle class and poor. You don’t believe that’s true because you believe only what the party you blindly follow says instead of what that party actually does. You’re a willingly misinformed idiot. And willingly is worse than unknowingly. That’s the part that makes you an idiot.

(I’m not even going to get into the extreme militia aspect of right-wing politics - like when white, male, Republican, Roman Catholic, soldier, National Rifle Association member, American, Timothy McVeigh committed the third largest terrorist attack ever on American soil behind Pearl Harbor and September 11 when he blew up the Alfred P. Murrah Building in Oklahoma City on April 19, 1995, damaging over 300 surrounding buildings and killing 168 people, including 19 babies and children in the day care center and injuring 450 more. No, I’m not even going to get into that.)

(I’m also not going to get into the extreme militia aspect of left-wing politics - like the eco-terrorist group, Earth Liberation Front (ELF) burning down housing construction sites killing no one, yet injuring their own sense of self-accomplishment by adding to the very air pollution they’re supposedly battling against. Or the Raw Food Diet. No, I’m not even going to get into THAT fucking craziness.)

Which brings us to my point. “Facts” and “Truth” are not the same thing. Facts can be manipulated in order to further a biased viewpoint, rendering those facts untrue. And blindly following what you are told by a biased partisan news source only makes you stupid. Willingly stupid.

OK, yes. I am specifically targeting FOX “News,” the fair as a quadriplegic in a 50-yard dash and balanced as Dakota Fanning & Lou Ferrigno on a see-saw, Republican fund-raising/donating, lie and propaganda machine (again). But you can’t blame me. They make it really, really easy by lying ALL THE TIME. Don’t get me wrong, now. By ‘ALL THE TIME’ I just simply mean ALWAYS.

Wait! Don’t go. I realize I’m being a cocky bastard, but it’s OK. I have proof to back me up. That’s how I roll. Unlike Bill O’Reilly. He too is a cocky bastard, although he also adds a few heaping dollops of condescention. Problem is, because he is either lying to pander to his base so more people watch him so his salary goes up or because he’s just stupid, he doesn’t ever have the proof to back up his pudding (I must be hungry, I’m using food referencing language). Even when he gives his version of proof, it’s just more stupidity. Like when he “proved” there is a God (I’m not debating the existence of God, just what O’Reilly considers “proof.”). He says that the tide comes in and the tide goes out and the sun comes up and the sun goes down and nobody knows why, ergo: God did it. See, he’s cocky, condescending, yet an utter fucking moron. He apparently has never heard of little things like science, astrophysics, math, celestial rotation, gravity or the Moon. But like all intelligent 16th century men, Bill knows that if he doesn’t know something, then the answer can only be God-magic. ooo-OOO-OO-ooooooooo!! (In my opinion, O’Reilly isn’t completely stupid, he’s mostly just pandering for the ca$h.)

But I digress.

Back to ‘FOX Facts vs. Truth’: The Battle Royale! SUNDAY!! SUNDAY!! SUNDAY!!

Let’s take a look at the screen grab of this graph taken directly from FOX in July 2010:

Let me tell you right off the bat that all the information sourced from the Bureau of Labor Statistics on this graph is 100% fact. And that the entire graph is one giant, unmitigated bullshit-stinking lie. It shows that even though the unemployment numbers steadily increased under the Bush administration, they continued to increase at the same rate under the Obama administration. That his policies are as bad as Bush’s. And it was flashed on the screen only long enough for you to ‘look’ at the graph that says ‘Obama is bad, too’ without getting the chance to ‘see’ the manipulation of the information.

The problem is the randomly picked months and deliberate uneven spacing of the months on the X-Axis of the graph. The first random period from December 2007 to September 2008 is 9 months. The next random period is 3 months shorter, yet the space on the graph is much wider than previous 9-month period; it should be a third shorter. And the last random period is 15 months. The distance on the graph here should be 2/5ths longer than the first period, yet it’s compressed to be the same length.

AND there is no information on the vertical Y-Axis to accurately indicate where the 7MIL, 9MIL, 13.5MIL and 15MIL figures should fall. This further indicates false representation of the numbers. Based on the four evenly spaced horizontal lines on the graph and the 7MIL and 9MIL numbers, one would assume the lines are 8MIL, 10MIL, 12MIL and 14MIL. Between the lines should be 7MIL, 9MIL, 11MIL and 13MIL. But FOX’s 13.5MIL falls below where 12MIL should fall and their 15MIL is just below where 14MIL should be.

What this does is give false representation of the facts in order to say, “Okay, we Republicans grudgingly accept Bush sucked so incomprehensibly bad as President and plunged the country into such an endless job-destroying, money-burning shit-hole that it got an anti-American, heathen negro elected, but he sucks just the same! So, in 2012 you might as well elect a rich, white, religious, southern, completely out of touch with the needs of the 98% of Americans who aren't millionaires, Republican male. It’ll be different next time. Honest.” Or, at least that’s what I read out of this graph.

(And what a half-assed fake graph at that! They didn’t even try. The line through the whole graph is perfectly straight. When the hell have you ever seen a perfectly straight line encompassing an entire statistical representation? FOX didn’t even make it a LITTLE wiggly to give it the appearance of legitimacy.)

Now take a look at the same exact information represented correctly in graph form with a more accurate title:

The graph clumsily, yet accurately shows that the unemployment rate began to level off after Obama’s policies kicked in. Now, if we fill in the data for all 30 months out of the two-and-a-half year period represented by FOX’s graph instead of pinpointing four random months, this is what you get:

The exact same information from the Bureau of Labor Statistics used by FOX, only presented in a highly detailed, un-manipulated, unbiased graph of the unemployment rate. It shows most accurately how the Obama administration’s policies affected the employment problem; they almost immediately curbed the job hemorrhaging caused by Bush’s policies. Not, as FOX “News” would have you believe, continue on the same path. And lest ye believe I got my information from a biased left-wing news source because you don’t understand unbiased statistics (or if you believe the US Department of Labor is “Liberal-Controlled” and lying), here’s another version of that last graph from the Conservative website,

You may be thinking, "Bill, those statistics don't take into account bla bla bla and da da dee." You may or may not be right. But that's irrelevant. Those are the EXACT statistics FOX "News" used for their graph. I just used them correctly. However, they must take into account bla bla bla and da da dee because FOX didn't even try to use right-wing biased statistics as they usually do, they just fucked with the physical accuracy of the graph. (An example of right-wing biased statistics would be for a Fox “News” reporter to go to a local Republican Party meeting and ask if they think Obama is doing a good job instead of asking a random sample of people on the street. Obviously, the answer would be, “Asked if they thought President Obama was doing a good job, 100% of those surveyed said ‘No.’ Back to you, Megyn.”)

This post and my second previous post, “I Know You Are But What Am I?” dovetail together nicely in showing how FOX “News” is completely biased and full of shit. They are simply a Republican Party bullhorn and fundraising machine. ‘Fair and Balanced’ is nothing more than an admittedly clever ad campaign to fool already biased minds into thinking they are getting real information.

They are not.

“Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not to his own facts.” 
                       - Daniel Patrick Moynihan, U.S. Senator 1977 - 2001

Good day!

Originally posted on Facebook 1/31/11


  1. Great post. I think that future posts would be more effective if they focus more on the facts and less on the insults to Fox News. Don't get me wrong, I completely agree with the insults, but I think they degrade the quality of the point you are making here.