Every now and then you read something that is accepted in the MSM, or better yet, perpetrated upon its readers that literally leaves you speechless. The Gawker Jew bashing articles were my most recent examples. Until now.
The Washington Post has gone on a fact bashing mission over a stump speech that Presidential candidate Fred Thompson made in Iowa. The anonymous writer of 'the claim' zeros in on the following statement made by Thompson.
"You know, you look back over our history, and it doesn't take you long to realize that our people have shed more blood for other people's liberty than any other combination of nations in the history of the world.''
As a result the WaPo staff has decided that Fred Thompson's claim deserves "four Pinocchios" for a "jingoistic assertion cannot be supported by facts, barring some tortuous definition of the phrase "other people's liberty.""
In doing so the WaPo article begins by citing U.S. census bureau figures of causalities for all the conflict casualties in U.S. wars, ending with a witty, or so they think, "as of today" stat to emphasize the ongoing wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. They then proceed to follow that by examples of countries that have "shed more blood for liberty" by using the Soviet Union's WWII casualties along with other stats from the conquests of Alexandrian Greeks and Napolean!
Seemingly oblivious to the difference between giving a life fighting for other peoples liberty and shedding blood in a conquest to either defend yourself from conquest or seeking to conquer others the WaPo author proceeds to mention case after case that supposedly pins Fred Thompson as a liar.
The Post awards Thompson "four Pinocchios" for his statement. I'd award the Post about ten dunce caps for borderline illiteracy.
Thompson specifically mentions that we shed our blood for "other people's liberty", not our own. That excludes any nation that fought to defend its own territory. The Soviet Union had allied itself with Nazi Germany -- right up to the moment of Hitler's invasion of June 1941. The Soviets did not fight the Germans to liberate anyone except themselves. True, they bled massively in their defeat of the Nazis, but they didn't do it out of love of liberty or selfless devotion to France or Britain. Their effort certainly helped the West in achieving victory on Hitler's Western front, but that wasn't why Joseph Stalin insisted on crushing the Nazis. Had Hitler not launched Operation Barbarossa, Stalin wouldn't have lifted a finger for anyone's liberty, let alone those of his own people -- which he proved in the post-war Iron Curtain he imposed on Europe.
Anyone who can't figure this much out has no business writing for a professional newspaper. It's a ludicrous, almost ghoulish argument in the face of what followed World War II in Europe. It's worthy of Walter Duranty, the disgraced Soviet apologist of the 1930s New York Times.
The rest of the piece is almost as bad. The unidentified writer uses the conquests of the Alexandrian Greeks (actually Macedonians, to be accurate) as a counter-example to Fred's claim, as well as Napoleon. The Post seems to have some trouble distinguishing imperial acquisition from liberty, a lost distinction that explains quite a bit of what appears on the pages of its newspaper.
Ed's post is a must read in full because he lays out the facts of the "fact checkers" in a strikingly cogent and comprehensive fashion even though it took little space to do so.
The newsrooms of the mainstream media are filled with seemingly poorly educated products of a highly biased and narrowly sighted education system that is turning out more students that appear arrested in development rather than clear thinking objective individuals. Of all the claims to fact check coming out of the mouths of politicians it is interesting that the Washington Post would choose to do a twofer by attacking both Fred Thompson and the memories of heroes, men and women of honor who died defending their right to be so biased and wrong in such a public forum.