Recently found a terrific web site called Spinsanity. It's a non-partisan web site devoted to calling out unfair or misleading spin in the media. Today's example took several publications to task for taking a statement by President Bush out of context:
The event featured seven men who have each been given a prosthetic hand to replace one cut off by Saddam Hussein's regime in Iraq. Bush shook the prosthetic hand of a victim, and then said "I'm honored to shake the hand of a brave Iraqi citizen who had his hand cut off by Saddam Hussein." Taken out of context, Bush's statement may appear to be unclear or garbled. But [...] it was actually perfectly reasonable -- the man has been given a new hand, and Bush shook it.

However, Slate's Jacob Weisberg ridiculed the quotation in his Bushisms column the next day, providing no link or context for readers, who were left to assume that the statement was a verbal stumble rather than a reference to a prosthetic hand. ...

Mocking Bush's verbal stumbles is one thing, but misconstruing his statements is another.

Indeed. And as much fun as it is to mock Bush (and he doesn't need much help there) it's much more important to have a site that takes ANYBODY to task for being misleading, whether they be on the left or the right or somewhere in between. Good for you, Spinsanity.


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