Monday, June 28, 2021

For the Record: Fact Checking

Steve points out something that is very wrong about former Attorney General Barr deciding to tell the truth to Jonathan Karl, namely that he doesn't think there was anything morally wrong about trying to overthrow a democratic election, he just didn't think it was going to be successful. It occurred to me that there were a few other things:

He seems to have ordered up an awful lot of investigations for which there was no justification to satisfy his vindictive client. He looks more and more like John Mitchell to me.

A more complex thing was a very annoying "fact check" in Washington Post, where Glenn Kessler assigned four Pinocchios to Biden for saying that the 2nd Amendment didn't allow you to buy a cannon in the 1780s:

Kessler is really the worst, though Politifact often does this too. The point the president was trying to make is an important one: the Second Amendment wasn't a guarantee that anybody can have any gun they want, and no Supreme Court ever held that it applied to individual gun ownership at all until Scalia's decision in Heller (2008). Whether you could or couldn't buy a cannon in 1788, the Second Amendment had nothing to do with it. In not mentioning that, and in acting as if the cannon question had some deep scholarly significance, Kessler really does the debate a disservice.

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