Fact Check Everything

News media’s problem with facts has always bothered me. Cable news is riddled with lies and misinformation, leading their viewers astray. Liberals lambast Fox News for it being mainly a political arm of either the Republican Party of the Tea Party—whichever of the two is the flavor of the day. Conservatives spit venom at MSNBC and CNN for misconstruing the facts as well.

Jay Rosen of New York University has been trying to convince the Sunday morning talk shows to start fact checking their guests, if at least later on in the week. He argues that the talk show guests have been using the air time to disseminate disingenuous talking points and outright lies with no consequence due to a lack of fact checking. It’s difficult, after all, for a talk show host to catch the lies and fallacies their guests conjure up; the hosts can’t compete with prepared talking points on the spot. This lack of accountability leaves the disseminated information, talking points and opinions up in the air, unmatched with facts and truth, for people to soak up.

David Gregory of Meet the Press has refused to go along with the idea. He argues that “[p]eople can fact-check ‘Meet the Press’ every week on their own terms.” Jack Tapper, on the other hand, “has instituted the after-the-show fact check on This Week.”

Colbert sums it up best:

It’s a sad day when a comedy show takes news and commentary shows to task for their lack of accountability. That says more about the sad state of our political discourse than anything else.

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