Take for example this pair of images-- Both taken from my couch at about 4:30 today:
Friday, September 26, 2008
Friday, September 12, 2008
I'm a huge fan of Factcheck.org .
If you haven't heard of it already, it's a nonpartisan research organization that validates (or, more frequently, invalidates) claims made by prominent public figures. It truly is nonpartisan, going as far as to give Obama and McCain equal billing on their site and in their newsletter. I think it can be hard for liberals to accept the format despite the obvious gravity of McCain's factual errors as compared to Obama, but it's extremely important.
In a politcal climate often characterized by "facts vs. dogma", it's very easy for an organization like Factcheck.org to assuage its liberal readership by swaying to the left. After all, facts are (at least in theory) the backbone of the liberal media. Without facts, the left might say, there would be no Truth in reporting. Yet Factcheck.org bites the proverbial bullet and doesn't actually suggest that facts make Truth.
That's Truth with a capital T.
It's hard to overstate just how important it is to remember that the goal of facts isn't to achieve Truth. Truth happens by manner of faith, not facts-- by persuasion, coercion, hypnosis, and trust. Facts are useful as a means to that end-- to convince a more skeptical audience to believe in a bigger message, perhaps-- but they don't make Truth on their own.
Ideally, the media shouldn't be concerned with Truth; only facts. And it is indeed when we see programs offering the Truth that we see the biggest factual errors.