See, here's how it works. Over here, Atrios reproduces some total swill from CNN flunky Lou Dobbs:
For the record about a third of the money from Jack Abramoff and his clients did in fact go to Democrats and 2/3 to Republicans. That's the reality. Don't blog me! It's the fact.
Now, as we all know by now, Jack Abramoff never gave a cent of his personal money to a single Democrat. And that's a fact.
But notice how cleverly Dobbs words his claim -- that the money is coming from "Jack Abramoff and his clients." So, technically, Dobbs is correct -- as long as you understand that all of that money came from the clients, and none from Abramoff himself. But if Dobbs conflates the two, well, it's your fault if you happen to conclude that Abramoff actually contributed any of that.
Using a similar rhetorical device, I could justifiably claim that, between the combination of them, Dobbs and a local white supremacist group have gang-raped a total of five black teenaged girls. Of course, I'll cleverly omit the fact that Dobbs had nothing to do with it but, technically, I would of course be entirely accurate as long as I refer only to the total package of perpetrators. (The whole gang rape thing is entirely hypothetical but I could, of course, just scan the local papers to find something equally heinous and it would work just as well.)
Aren't semantics fun? Now, about Bill O'Reilly and al Qaeda being personally responsible for thousands of American deaths on 9/11 ...
Actually I think you'd have to word it as something like "A portion of the gang rapes committed by Dobbs and a local white supremacist group were committed against Group A while the remainder were committed against Group B."
Your wording wasn't quite Repugnican-clever enough to get away with (though I realize they'll defend any wrong statement of theirs)! Saying Dobbs AND some group commited a gang rape would be a lie. Saying that the total number of rapes by Dobbs AND others were distributed in some manner (or perpetrated in some manner, e.g. some rapes committed by Dobbs & friends were committed outdoors, some indoors) would be fair game, as you would simply be omitting the fact that Dobbs committed zero rapes, not lying.
Still, nice post as you're spot on about the intellectual dishonesty required of right whingers in order to defend scum like Abramoff and explain away incidents that make their heroes look bad.
Your points are well-taken -- obviously, you have to phrase your original claims extremely carefully to have plausible deniability later.
I'm thinking the adjective "weaselly" would figure prominently here.
Post a Comment