April 28, 2021

Four Pinocchios for The Washington Post

Just 100 days into Biden’s term, the “fact-checker” is quitting its database of his lies.

In 2013, Jeff Bezos, a charter member of the “Archenemies of Liberty Club” and the world’s richest man, bought a struggling Leftmedia rag known as The Washington Post. While the Post was clearly already a bastion of leftism in the mainstream media, since Bezos took over — and even more so since Donald Trump ran for president — we’ve noted a marked hard-left turn in the Post’s coverage and tone. Indeed, less than a month after Trump took office in 2017 and for the first time in its history, the Post adopted a motto: the pretentious “Democracy Dies in Darkness.”

With all that background comes news that the Post is already going to let its database of President Joe Biden’s lies fade into darkness. “We do not plan to extend [it] beyond 100 days,” announced the Post’s chief “fact-checker” Glenn Kessler, who claims to have “learned my lesson” about the man hours required — “400 additional 8-hour days over four years beyond our regular jobs for three people.”

“We’ve been comparing Biden (67 false or misleading claims) to Trump’s first 100 days (511 claims.),” he added. “But past is no prologue. In the last 100 days before the 2020 election, we counted 8,859 claims made by Trump. It was a wild ride.” He then explained, “Biden is off to a relatively slow start but who knows what will happen. We will keep doing fact checks, just not a database.” Sure thing. Wink.

We’ll grant that Trump is a braggart and a blowhard who is far from accurate with his words. But the idea that every one of the Post’s “gotcha” claims was actually a Trump lie is as preposterous as the notion that Biden hardly ever lies by comparison. The Post’s partisan “fact-checkers” simultaneously created work for themselves with dishonest hackery and then Kessler has the chutzpah to claim victim status for having been overworked. The Post didn’t just run the database, by the way. It regularly trumpeted it on its website home page, which was an obvious bid to generate traffic and ad revenue. Bezos is a businessman, after all.

More importantly, Biden is a shameless liar in ways that would make Trump blush.

The biggest difference between the two men entirely eludes the sages at the Post. Biden, like virtually every Democrat, lies in order to deceive about his real designs. Democrats know that honestly revealing their plans would often chase voters away, so Biden instead waxes eloquent about “unity” in his Inaugural Address and then proceeds to enact an agenda so radically left that even Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is proud of it.

On the other hand, generally speaking, Trump exaggerated and hyperbolized on the way to conveying an underlying truth. Whether he was specifically accurate or not, he was usually right about the bigger story. We certainly wish he’d been more precise and humble, but bluster is a long way from what Biden’s doing.

The Post seems to have a new strategy with Biden. Remember that time Kessler “fact-checked” Biden’s vaccine lie as merely “a verbal stumble, a typical Biden gaffe”? Trump certainly never got that kind of deference, but treating Biden as non compos mentis is the easiest way around his dishonesty.

Clearly, dumping the Biden database is a decision with both ideological and marketing components. The Post can’t support Biden by actually holding him accountable, and its readers don’t want it to anyway. Besides, we suppose Kessler can always use his newfound free time to keep doing things like phony “fact-checks” about how black Republican Senator Tim Scott isn’t quite black enough for a white Beltway politico.

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