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Facebook "Partner" POLITIFACT Offers No Facts In Judicial Watch "Fact Check" Only Opinion.

January 30, 2020

(Opinion)

 

I am just going to get down to making my point here. It is my opinion that Facebooks "fact checkers" can be far more deceptive and misleading than the posts they claim as "false information".

 

The Judicial Watch article itself is from November 19, 2019 so since I rarely post anything over a week or two old, that would be around the time I likely posted it myself on my pages. Unsurprisingly (to me at least) the POLITIFACT "fact check" by  Miriam Valverde was written the same day that Facebook supposedly notified me that this is "false information" and restricted my account. How convenient.

 

As we go through this I will show why it is my opinion that this is not a "fact check" but an opinion piece being used to discredit a Judicial Watch article/post. And by proxy myself and who knows how many others by Facebook restricting our pages based on this "fact check" that in fact is not a "fact check" at all. In other words it is another biased hit piece and nothing more in my opinion. After you read what I have to say you can make up your own mind about it. Unlike these "fact checkers" I have no intention of telling anyone what they must think. Look at both sides yourself and make your own decisions. 

 

Lets go. 

 

You can read the Judicial Watch article here. The U.S. Citizenship and immigratin service (USCIS) report and statement are linked in the Judicial Watch article.

 

You can read the full "Fact Check" by Miriam Valverde here.

 

So as we can see the "fact checker" ( Miriam Valverde) at POLITIFACT claims that this article/post by Judicial Watch is "false information" because; 

 

"Most arrests of DACA applicants were not for murder, rape, DUI".

 

 This statement by POLITIFACT's Miriam Valverde is key because you will not find this statement ANYWHERE in the Judicial Watch article/post, or, the statement/report made by the USCIS.

 

The only person making this claim ( "Most arrests of DACA applicants were for murder, rape, DUI") is Miriam Valverde herself. Apparently she is assuming that this is what Judicial Watch is saying in its post. That is an opinion, not a fact.

 

Now I do not know about you but in my book THAT is misleading and "false information". Claiming someone said things they never said is a lie, pure and simple.

 

The Judicial Watch article/post only uses the word MOST in one sentence.

 

" Most of the arrested DACA approvals involve driving infractions and immigration related civil and criminal offenses, but thousands were granted amnesty after committing serious crimes."

 

Judicial Watch never makes the claim that "Most arrests of DACA applicants were for murder, rape, DUI" as the POLITIFACT "fact check" headline claims that it does. Which is the entire bases for calling the Judicial Watch article/post "false information" to begin with.

 

This is a classic tactic used by Facebook's "fact checkers", we have seen it before. They claim the article, meme, or whatever is false based on statements that are never actually made by the article meme etc. Itself. This is highly effective because these "fact checkers" know as well as anyone else does that a majority of people they are targeting rarely read beyond the headline. That being the case those people will never know that the "fact check" is an opinion, not a fact based debunking of what was said by someone else. I repeat, it is an opinion, not fact.

 

Moving down a few lines we find another OPINION by Miriam Valverde being PORTRAYED as a fact.

 

"The post is misleading. While more than 100,000 people who applied for DACA had an arrest in their record, the bulk of those arrests were for driving offenses that exclude DUI, and for immigration-related offenses."

 

"The post is misleading." That is NOT a fact, it is an opinion of the author Miriam Valverde and nothing more. She can not possibly speak for every person who reads this article/post by claiming it will mislead them. Is Miriam Valverde a mind reader? Is she all knowing and all seeing? I don't think so, not in the real world anyway.

 

A little farther down we again see Miriam Valverde PORTRAYING her opinion as somehow factually debunking the Judicial Watch article/post.

 

"Also, the 100,000-person figure includes applicants who were denied DACA or terminated from the program. The Judicial Watch post does not make that clear."

 

Is it now Miriam Valverde's job to edit Judicial Watch's (or anyone else's) articles/posts? If the author does not say things exactly like Miriam Valverde ( or any other Facebook "fact checker" for that matter) thinks they should then the article/post as a whole, or in part, is declared "false information?"  If people do not say exactly what these "fact checkers" think they should say they will discredit them. That is censorship and it is also a form of fascism. It eliminates free speech by using coercion to force people into following a specific narrative. Their narrative. 

 

I keep asking myself the same question. Who the hell died and made these "fact checkers" God over everyone's articles and posts anyway? Who the hell are they to decide how everyone else must word their literary compositions or posts?

 

Valverde even quotes Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton pointing out the same thing I am.

 

Judicial Watch president Tom Fitton defended the Facebook graphic in an email, saying the post "does not say or even suggest that all 100,000 referenced recipients were arrested for the three crimes," as in murder, rape and DUI. He also said that "nowhere does Judicial Watch refer to the arrests as convictions."

 

In other words Valverde is claiming that the article/post makes claims that it in fact does not make. That makes Valverde's claim a lie, pure and simple.

 

Then we come to a line that is bolded so that it stands out.

 

"What the government numbers say and mean"

 

Before going on we must ask a very important question here.

 

According to her own bio Miriam graduated from Emerson College with a major in journalism and minor in business studies. That being the case,  exactly what qualifies Miriam Valverde, a Journalist, to explain to anyone what a government report on DACA recipients and the crimes they committed says or means? Is she a verifiable expert in this area?

 

Not to mention, just what the hell makes this woman think WE need her to explain it to us in the first place? Is she under the impression that we are too stupid to grasp a very clear and easy to understand report?

 

It seems to me that Miriam Valverde's highest opinion is of herself. Personally, I do not need her or anyone else telling me what I should think or believe. I am quite capable of determining that for myself.

 

Again, this is Miriam Valverde's OPINION, her interpretation, not a FACT.

 

Since Miriam Valverde has no qualification to factually interpret this report I am not going to spend time going through her opinion, you can all read it for yourself.  

 

Don't bother clicking the link that says NOVEMBER REPORT though because it does not link directly to the November 2019 report as the Judicial Watch article does. It is a link to every report put out by the USCIS dating back to at least 2012. This is another common tactic we see over and over again in Facebooks "fact checkers" articles. They either link to massive amounts of information that no one is going to bother to go through or like so many other well known "fact checks" they simply link right back to the "fact check" itself.

 

The next bolded line reads;

 

The most common arrests

 

Followed by this statement by Valverde.

 

"The top arrest category was for "driving-related" offenses, such as speeding or driving without a valid license. (It does not include DUI.)

 

More than 25,300 approved DACA applicants had a prior arrest in this category. The second-most common category was for "immigration-related" offenses, such as overstaying a visa or an arrest related to deportation proceedings. (Nearly 13,000 approved DACA applicants had a prior arrest in this category.)

 

Lets look back at the statement by Judicial Watch in their article/post which Valverde is claiming to debunk here.

 

"Most of the arrested DACA approvals involve driving infractions and immigration related civil and criminal offenses, but thousands were granted amnesty after committing serious crimes."

 

Except for Valverde emphasizing that DUI was not included in the top arrests, these statements say exactly the same thing. Note that Judicial Watch never claims that DUI is included in their statement as one of the most common arrests. The Judicial Watch article/post simply states the same thing that Valverde does in her "fact check". The only difference aside from Valverde injecting a claim Judicial Watch never makes, is the wording.

 

From Judicial Watch article;

 

"Nearly 8,000 illegal immigrants granted protection under DACA committed theft or larceny, the records show, and nearly 7,000 drug-related offenses. More than 4,000 were apprehended for driving under the influence, 3,421 for battery and 3,308 for assault."

 

From Valverde's "fact check";

 

 

Note that this graphic does not appear anywhere in the USCIS report. You can check for yourself here.

 

This brings us right back to Valverde again claiming to debunk something the Judicial Watch article/post never says.

 

Now we get to the  pièce de résistance .

 

Our ruling

 

A Judicial Watch Facebook post said, "More than 100,000 DACA applicants have been arrested — Murder, Rape, DUI."

 

This is deceptive. More than 100,000 DACA applicants have been arrested, but not for murder, rape, and DUI. By emphasizing those crimes, the post gives the wrong impression. The post does not mention the most common arrests, which are for driving and immigration violations (not DUI).

Immigrants deemed to pose a security threat or who have a felony conviction are not eligible for DACA.

 

We rate the post Mostly False.

 

There is nothing untrue about this statement by Judicial Watch and Valverde never claims in her "fact check" that it is untrue.

 

In fact, she never claims that any part of the Judicial Watch article/post is false as far as the information it provides.

 

She is claiming it is false because she disagrees with the way the article/post is worded. She says so herself.

 

"This is deceptive." Again, this is an opinion. Just because SHE sees it as deceptive does not mean that every person who reads it will also see it as deceptive as well.

 

I mean one has to ask. Exactly who the hell does this woman think she is that she can speak for every one and call something deceptive just because that is HER opinion of it?

 

Valverde debunks nothing in her "fact check" because she never claims that any of the actual information within the article/post is in fact false.

 

She then claims that The post does not mention the most common arrests, which are for driving and immigration violations (not DUI). 

 

We have already established that this is blatantly untrue by the Judicial Watch article itself.

 

"Most of the arrested DACA approvals involve driving infractions and immigration related civil and criminal offenses, but thousands were granted amnesty after committing serious crimes."

 

Again, Judicial Watch never claims that DUI is one of the most common arrests, only Valverde herself says this.

 

Now I am sure Valverde would point to her "fact check" not being of the Judicial Watch article and information as a whole, but simply the graphic used in its Facebook post.

 

 

Well, sorry Miriam Valverde but that doesn't fly either. Not in the real world anyway because you have not shown any proof in your "fact check" that what this graphic states is in any way untrue.

 

It seems to me that Miriam Valverde simply does not like the way the article/post is worded and based on that she has declared it to be "false information", based on HER opinion. 

 

That is not a "fact check" by any definition because it checks no facts. It debunks nothing.The only thing it states is Valverde's opinion being presented as fact, and then she offers her opinion up as somehow discrediting Judicial Watch by... not discrediting anything that the article/post presents as information.

 

This blog series titled "Fact Checkers" Truth, Lies, or Propaganda is my opinion of what I see and nothing more. It is only intended to give people a different perspective that they can use to make a well informed and independent decision of how they themselves see Facebooks "fact checks". 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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