The main PoliticsDebunked.com page

Facebook has a bug directing all links here to the blog. For the main site please go to http://www.PoliticsDebunked.com

Monday, December 10, 2012

Site redesigned for ease of social media spread.

According to the Pew Center: "Among adults younger than age 30, as many saw news on a social networking site the previous day (33%) as saw any television news (34%), with just 13% having read a newspaper either in print or digital form". Other groups aren't as far along but show the same trend.

The site now provides "posters" at the end of each article that are sized to be posted on Facebook or tweeted, along with links to make that easier. You may also copy the images and spread them anyway you want. The main  PoliticsDebunked.com page has been updated with posters for existing articles and those "coming soon".

 The only way the government will ever change is if those who wish to see change spread the word virally. If you don't take part in the process, then don't complain after the next election or major  new law change. Perhaps information on this site is nothing new to you and your friends.. but it may be to friends of friends. The only way to reach the public is if *you* help do the work to spread the word via email (still the most viral media), social networking sites (posting on your own page, and on group pages or asking the owners to post to group pages), posts on blogs, letters to the editor, emails to talk shows an columnists, etc.

The general sharing links let you get to any sites that are missed. Better integration for some like Google+ are considered as time permits.  If the lack of a Facebook "like" button seems odd, its partly because the "share" and "send" buttons on Facebook are more viral (especially if you share things directly on the page of friends).

Its  also because the Facebook "like" button won't work with the site even though oddly other  Facebook methods do. It appears likely to be due to a censorship campaign on the part of those who didn't like some  content posted to Facebook . CNET reported before that some partisans have taken to seeking out any political content they don't like to label it as "spam". They'll go to facebook groups of their opponents and label  anything they disagree with as spam even when its non-commercial content relevant to the topic and with the same political leanings   the group was intended for. . People reported having PoliticsDebunked.com content labeled as "spam".   Its necessary to risk posting even to groups that may not always agree with the content to get other voices heard, risking closed minded censors.

 There wasn't a like button  on the site at first, and adding one didn't work, it gives  an error claiming PoliticsDebunked.com is a  "suspicious URL".  Alternatively there are reports on the net  that  a Facebook bug may also be causing  that error for some sites,  research is ongoing.  This site is new, so after more people share its content another test will be done in case that helped.

Note: when the site was first launched recently there was a glitch. At some point Google's web  creation and blogging tools didn't play well together and the PoliticsDebunked.com main website  links were going to the blog for some people, notably many from Facebook. They worked for the site author so it wasn't noticed right away. This has been fixed, so please tell others who may not have seen the main site to go take a look. Or to  look again if they haven't seen the new site :-)

Feds spent 3.7 times as much in 2011 as in 1961 per person

Government spending will grow unless politicians get incentive to change.

The Federal government spent 3.7 times as much per person in 2011 as it did 50 years ago in 1961 when Democratic hero JFK was in office (adjusted for inflation). If Kennedy were around to propose his level of spending today he'd be denounced by the mainstream media as a radical extremist.  They propose growing spending even more rapidly in the future, and revenue won't keep up.

Our government was designed around "checks and balances" that work to control many things, but not apparently not spending.  Politicians get elected by promising to spend on programs. There is no reason to expect the results to change unless we change the incentives. "Pay for performance" works in the private sector, its time to consider applying proven techniques to politicians and government employees, e.g. a bonus for spending cuts. In the case of elected officials perhaps they'd be collected only if reelected to confirm voter approval. Even if you disagree with that approach,  consider learning more about the problem here in this new article on the main site: Government spending is out of control. at http://www.politicsdebunked.com/article-list/federal-spending

Much of the public doesn't realize that spending has on average grown steadily for decades. So please pass this on to everyone you know. Even if your friends are aware of the issues, perhaps friends of friends aren't . The major media usually doesn't inform people well about such things, the only way for them to learn is for *you* to spread the word.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

AP's "fact check" obscures Obama's continued lie

Obama's  has continued his lie claiming he plans to pay down the debt. In a speech on November 4th, 2012he said again: "But it’s time to use the savings from ending two wars to pay down our debt".  The AP did addressed the issue in a   "fact check" article on November 3rd and did say his claim isn't  true. Unfortunately the article is flawed and misleading. They "bury the lead", or more to the point ignore it, by failing to point out how simple, explicit and large the lie is.  Obama's own budget document explicitly contradicts his claims in a table showing the debt increasing each year by over $900 billion, there is no need to trust any other source to confirm he lied.

The article also tries to mislead the public into thinking the media has often addressed the issue by saying Obama's claim has persisted   "no matter how many times it's whacked", when of course the media has mostly ignored the issue.  The newspaper where I live *never* printed anything disputing his claim, and searches of major media sites turn up either no or few  debunkings. The few articles like this one from the AP that  do address it  do so in a way meant to downplay its importance.

The article seems to be trying to  draw attention away from Obama's current lie to focus on the sins of those who started the wars by saying "The wars were financed mostly with borrowing". Since the article doesn't provide actual numbers, that phrasing leaves room for those who don't look at the numbers and wish to believe Obama to think the topic might be open to debate. They may think "mostly" means that some wasn't borrowed. People who don't pay close attention sometimes have an inflated view of the amount spent on war.  They might think: "ok, so perhaps they were spending $1.5 trillion/year on wars and borrowing $1 trillion a year. Ending the wars would leave   money to pay down the debt". As this site has pointed out  obviously the numbers are vastly lower and he won't be paying down the debt,  but the AP fails to provide enough support for the less well informed to assess the claim.

Its   misleading for the AP to claim  the  "wars were financed mostly with borrowing" when there weren't dedicated bonds issued for the purpose. The government spent too much and borrowed money. Most of the money it spent wasn't borrowed, so all spending was "financed mostly with tax revenue" and not with borrowing.  The problem is that last year it borrowed far more than it spent on wars, so even ending them entirely wouldn't be enough to start paying down the debt. Its true that adding a new expense can lead to borrowing, but it is possible to instead cut other expenses when you choose to spend more. The borrowing is required by the total spending, not any 1 particular item



Friday, November 2, 2012

Government fails poor & taxpayers

A new video on "Government fails poor&taxpayers" (a cartoon&mashup of Obama words used against his views) was added to the site, along with a web page with details.

 If you wish to help people: you donate to a charity, you don't give extra money to the government. Last year president Obama gave more money to private charities than he paid in federal income tax. Even the head of our government felt it was better to give his money to charities than to  the government he manages.

 Official US Census poverty figures show about 46 million people have been living in poverty the last couple of years, the most ever. The 15% poverty rate is tied for the highest it has been since 1965. The problem isn't lack of funding.

$195 billion would have been needed last year to simply give everyone enough money to bring their income above the poverty level.
$1030 billion at least was spent on federal anti-poverty programs (including state funding put into those programs).

read more on the site

Monday, October 29, 2012

Obama proves Orwell correct

You can spread the word about the first topic of this site via the sending the text below as an email, just cut and paste it. There are two possible subject lines to experiment with:

Subject: Obama proves Orwell's 1984 correct (urgent: forward to everyone)
Subject: Obama's big lie most media missed (urgent: forward to everyone)

Please forward this message to everyone you know.
George Orwell expressed a fear in the book 1984 that leaders would gain so much influence   they could: "announce that two and two made five, and you would have to believe it."  Previously he wrote: "This prospect frightens me much more than bombs".

We seem to have reached that point. Obama claimed at the Democratic National Convention on Sept. 6th, 2012:  "I'll use the money we're no longer  spending on war to pay down our debt".

Yet the White House site contains his 2013 budget proposal with a table showing his planned national debt at the end of each year through 2022. It adds at least  $900 billion to the  debt every year, $9.6 trillion over a decade.

If a CEO   lied about his company's finances to get people to buy stock, the public would cry "fraud! send him to jail!". Should we trust someone to run our government that we wouldn't trust to run a company? This isn't a one time gaffe, he has repeated it from the State of the Union in January, through  dozens of speeches into October  and a campaign commercial.

In fiscal year 2012 the government borrowed $1276 billion. He  implies   lower   war spending will save so much money the government  won't need to keep borrowing. Yet his proposal only cuts $82.3 billion per year  by 2014 for war spending compared to 2012.  Simple arithmetic (almost as simple as adding "2 + 2" to get the right answer),  shows that is ridiculously far from saving enough money to pay down the debt. The president has been insulting the intelligence of the American public  trying to get away with this.  

It is shocking that only a few in the media even bothered to comment on this as: "the biggest lie of Campaign 2012". They ignored the ranking member of the Senate Committee on the Budget (a former  federal prosecutor) explaining: "For the President to say his plan will pay down the debt is one of the greatest financial misrepresentations ever made to the American people.".  It seems to be a case of the "Emperor's New Clothes".

Why should you care about the debt? It may seem too abstract for many people to worry about, but it isn't a minor issue. The debt is bad for the economy, the poor, retirees, and the future of this country's children. For details about this, or to see the issue described in  an amusing cartoon&video mashup of Obama's own words, see the new site:
  Politics Debunked (http://PoliticsDebunked.com)
Watch the site for news about more major political myths coming soon.
[Note: The budget table is a spreadsheet link, you can open it in your browser directly here or paste the link into the spreadsheet viewer directly here].

Friday, October 26, 2012

Site Launched

This site PoliticsDebunked.com just went live. Some links mistakenly point here to the blog rather than directly to the site, please go there for information. More  on this blog in the future.