I really hate negative-campaigning, like when the candidates focus their energy on their opponents bad decisions rather than focusing on what they can bring to the county. Both John McCain and Barack Obama are guilty of attacking each other with whatever political ammunition they can find, be it truth or subterfuge. As one can imagine this makes it quite difficult for the public to decifer the candidate's policies accurately, and I believe that at this point the candidate's have thrown so much muck themselves that they are probably just as confused as to what they are standing for anymore as any of us are.
Now I call to you lone political scholar, do not cry, don't be sad. Our constantly thinking friends of Internet lore have an answer for all these confusing accusations. Two Web sites, Fact Check and PolitiFact have been launched to supply the truthful answers to all of the superfluous non-sensible bullshit that comes out of our politicians mouths. Fact Check is written in more of a blog type form, which just highlights the most recent accusations and judges their truthfulness.
A more recent Fact Check post reads:
A wildlife group's ad attacks Palin for supporting the shooting of wolves from airplanes. She does, but there's more to it than that.
Then the article goes on and explains in full detail what's up with Palin's views on this, my synopsis is that Sarah Palin hates puppies. PolitiFact is a bit more interactive than Fact Check and has really cool features like the Truth-O-Meter which is an electronic meter which rates the truthfulness of a statement, and then backs it up with things the candidate might have said or voted on. The truth-o-meter is interactive and fun! Let's again rate the truthfulness of a recent Sarah Palin comment.
If an Iranian woman shows too much hair in public, she risks being beaten or killed.
The PolitiFact truth-o-meter judged this statement to be totally false, again demonstrating Palin's inepetitude regarding anything foreign policy related. My own synopsis on this, Sarah Palin hates women? I just don't understand any other legitamate reason she would say that if it was never true in the first place.
How do Web sites like Politifact and Fact Check find the correct information to judge the truthfulness of these candidates statements? Once again the Internet Gods are mighty, there are two other sites I want to talk about that highlight the candidate's voting records and general backround. These are Project Vote Smart, which has a plethora of background information on not only the major and minor presidential candidates, but basically all the elected officials working in the Federal government. This site provides biographies, policy positions, campaign financing, as well as transcipts of speeches of everyone involved, it is quite dense, but full of information.
The final site which is more a database than a site, run by the Washington Post, it is the U.S. Congress Votes Database, which supplies details of every vote from every congressperson since 1991. This is a great resource in checking what either Obama or McCain have voted for or against during their time in the Senate or could be used to check whether your local congressperson is voting in favor of you, the constituent, or if they're voting more for their own political benefits. Now, because this is MY blog we will take a short look at MY congressman....can I get a drum role please?
Hailing a staunch 5'7 frame, graduate of Fordham University, hailing from Montclair, New Jersey, please join me in welcoming the Congressman from the 8th district of NJ, BILL PASCRELL!!!!!!!!!!!!
Date Vote Position GOP opinion DEM opinion 9/24/08 Vote 628: H RES 1488: Providing for Consideration of the Senate Amendment to H.R. 2638, Making Appropriations for the Department of Homeland Security Fy 2008 Yes No Yes 9/23/08 Vote 627: H R 642: Honorable Stephanie Tubbs Jones College Fire Prevention Act Yes Yes Yes 9/23/08 Vote 626: H R 5352: Elder Abuse Victims Act of 2008 Yes Yes Yes 9/23/08 Vote 625: H R 6983: Paul Wellstone and Pete Domenici Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act of 2008 Yes Yes Yes 9/23/08 Vote 624: H R 6897: Filipino Veterans Equity Act 2008 Yes Yes Yes 9/23/08 Vote 623: H R 5244: Credit Cardholders’ Bill of Rights Act of 2008 Yes No Yes 9/23/08 Vote 622: H R 5244: Credit Cardholders’ Bill of Rights Act of 2008 No Yes No 9/23/08 Vote 621: S J RES 45: Expressing the Consent and Approval of Congress to An Interstate Compact Regarding Water Resources in the Great Lakes--St. Lawrence River Basin Yes Yes Yes 9/23/08 Vote 620: H RES 1476: Providing for Consideration of H.R. 5244, Credit Cardholders’ Bill of Rights Act of 2008 Yes No Yes 9/23/08 Vote 619: H RES 1476: Providing for Consideration of H.R. 5244, Credit Cardholders’ Bill of Rights Act of 2008 Yes No Yes 9/22/08 Vote 618: H R 6853: Nationwide Mortgage Fraud Coordinator Act of 2008 Not Voting Yes Yes 9/22/08 Vote 617: H R 1907: Coastal and Estuarine Land Conservation Program Act Not Voting Yes Yes 9/22/08 Vote 616: H R 6685: To Authorize the Secretary of the Interior to Provide An Annual Grant to Facilitate An Iron Working Training Program for Native Americans Not Voting Yes Yes 9/18/08 Vote 615: H R 6460: Great Lakes Legacy Reauthorization Act of 2008 Yes Yes Yes 9/18/08 Vote 614: H R 3036: No Child Left Inside Act of 2008 Yes No Yes 9/18/08 Vote 613: H R 3036: No Child Left Inside Act of 2008 No Yes No 9/18/08 Vote 612: H R 3036 Yes Yes Yes 9/18/08 Vote 611: H RES 1441: Providing for Consideration of H.R. 3036, to Amend the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 Regarding Environmental Education, and for Other Purposes Yes No Yes 9/18/08 Vote 610: H RES 1441: Providing for Consideration of H.R. 3036, to Amend the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 Regarding Environmental Education, and for Other Purposes Yes No Yes 9/18/08 Vote 609: H RES 1460 Yes No Yes
Ahhh what a mench! The man votes with his party every time, at least he's not a flip-flopper I suppose.
All Senators and Congresspeople can be found on this site, and it really does provide an excellent resource in making the votes readily available to the Internet population. Thus bringing us in full circle in uncovering if what the politician said is really what they mean.
As you'll find out, politicians are usually full of it, except Bill Pascrell of course.