Saturday, April 21, 2012

Verifying facts with Beatlology techniques

In a world where the media manipulates the truth, or purposefully lie, it is hard to get the facts straight in any given case.

I've personally got my facts outside of the MSM for about 5 years now. I don't have cable tv, I don't usually listen to the radio news. I do check in on a lot of blogs. I listen to the talk show hosts with whom I agree for the most part. But I still think I can correctly refer to myself as well-informed.

If I'm reading a right leaning blog, say, National Review Online or Mark Steyn, I don't take their word for anything they say, but I don't dismiss them. If I find an article interesting, I start trying to walk through the issues presented, backwards. Which means, for example, if the author asserts that the president made a speech in 2010 vowing to cover all Republicans in shellac, I start googling "Obama speech cover Republicans shellac 2010" and glance at what comes up. If one looks like it may refute the blog's claim I am usually drawn initially to that, and if it does, that's great. Blogger 2 says "That goofy blogger 1! Hey doofus, he did mention shellac, but he said HE was shellacked!". Now I feel I'm getting somewhere. Two sources say "shellac" was definitely in a speech Obama made in 2010. Maybe there's a youtube video of Obama making the speech, just where he says "we really got a shellacking.".But that's the whole clip. And I'm not done because I need to know in what context this is being said.

So what am I looking for? What Obama says he said, maybe in a statement he makes about the speech?

Monday, April 16, 2012

"Buy US or Else" bumper sticker = Nice life there, wouldn't want anything to 'APPEN to it, would we?

Living in the eastern part of Michigan, I see a lot of bumper stickers advising me that I am one of many, or perhaps all, types of bad people unless whenever I buy a car it is "made in the US."  That's been true throughout my life, and in the past I would just ignore it.  My father worked at Fords, and his take on it was that many of the big three ran factories in multiple countries and if you bought a Ford it was likely to say "hecho en Mexico" or "fabrique au Canada" on it.  I found out he was right: I've owned 2 new and 2 slightly used Fords; of them, one was made in Mexico and one in Canada.  Conversely, at that time (late 80s, early 90s) Toyota, Honda and Mitsubishi employed a lot of Americans....which is important to know because of course the "buy American" crowd sincerely believe that if you buy a car made by a foreign company, you are personally responsible  for the high unemployment rate.  But since the Japanese companies employ a lot of Americans, if you buy a Honda Civic or whatever, you will help them maintain their jobs.