Billionaire Elon Musk, the owner of Twitter, has waded into the “controversy” over the White House being fact-checked by the social media’s crowdsourced fact-checking system, Birdwatch.
As previously reported, after the White House posted a tweet Tuesday attributing “President Biden’s leadership” to seniors receiving an increase in their Social Security checks, Birdwatch participants swooped in with a veritable fact-check.
“Seniors will receive a large Social Security benefit increase due to the annual cost of living adjustment, which is based on the inflation rate. President Nixon in 1972 signed into law automatic benefit adjustments tied to the Consumer Price Index,” the fact-check reads.
The platform’s decision to allow a fact-check of the White House garnered massive attention, including from Spike Cohen of You Are The Power, a “network of liberty-minded activists.”
Here’s what Cohen tweeted Wednesday:
White House: seniors are getting the biggest SS increase in 10 years.
Context-checkers: That’s because inflation is the highest it’s been in decades.
White House: *deletes tweet*
— Spike Cohen (@RealSpikeCohen) November 2, 2022
What Cohen tweeted matters because Musk responded to the tweet slightly later Wednesday afternoon.
“The system is working,” he wrote with a laughing emoji.
The system is working
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) November 2, 2022
The system is indeed working, albeit better late than never.
Twitter actually launched its fact-checking system, Birdwatch, back in 2021.
“Birdwatch allows people to identify information in Tweets they believe is misleading and write notes that provide informative context. We believe this approach has the potential to respond quickly when misleading information spreads, adding context that people trust and find valuable,” Twitter announced on Jan. 25th, 2021.
However, Birdwatch was in just a test phase at the time. Not until Musk took over Twitter last week did Birdwatch suddenly get rolled out to all of Twitter.
Since the rollout, the White House and President Joe Biden himself have faced an endless barrage of Twitter fact-checks in response to the incessant lies they tell:
According to Musk, it’s all on purpose.
“The community notes feature is awesome. Our goal is to make Twitter the most accurate source of information on Earth, without regard to political affiliation,” he wrote in a separate tweet Tuesday.
The community notes feature is awesome.
Our goal is to make Twitter the most accurate source of information on Earth, without regard to political affiliation.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) November 2, 2022
Musk’s conservative supporters love the feature because it’s allowing for fair and equal fact-checks going both directions, not just one.
It contrasts sharply with the fact-checking system used by the establishment media. While their system does contain fact-checks of the Biden administration and other Democrats, their fact-checks are far and few between.
Indeed, a study conducted earlier this year by the Media Research Center conservative watchdog group found that the establishment media’s fact-checkers prefer fact-checking the president’s critics versus the president himself.
The study specifically found that between Jan. 20th, 2021 and Jan. 19th, 2022, PolitiFact fact-checked the president only 40 times but fact-checked his critics 230 times. Likewise, between Jan. 20th, 2022 and Sept. 19th, 2022, PolitiFact only fact-checked the president 18 times, whereas it fact-checked his critics 108 times
You don’t say? Study confirms PolitiFact fact-checks Biden’s critics more than the president himself https://t.co/55IZEsKtRu
— American Wire News (@americanwire_) October 1, 2022
Again, it’s not that the media doesn’t fact-check the president and his administration — it that’s that they fact-check them far less than they deserve.
With the Trump administration, dozens of fact-checks were issued on any particular day. With the Biden administration, weeks sometimes pass by without a single fact-check being issued, despite the president lying throughout the whole period of time.
In the past seven days or so alone, the president has lied numerous times.
“The economy grew at 2.6 percent rate last quarter. And although it may not feel like it for everyone, people’s incomes went up last quarter more than inflation went up,” he said during a speech delivered last Thursday in Syracuse, New York.
“So economic growth is up, the price of inflation is down, real incomes are up, and the price of gas is down. Folks continue to spend, but now at a more stable pace than during our rapid recovery last year. Businesses continue to invest in America,” he added.
Yet instead of calling out his lies, the media rushed to report them verbatim.
Here’s one example:
The truth is the economy is slowing, inflation is still at record highs, wages are down in comparison to inflation, and the price of gas is still exorbitantly high compared to when the president took office in January of 2021.
“Today, the most common price of gas in America is $3.39 — down from over $5 when I took office,” the president added during his Syracuse speech.
That was a flat-out lie. When the president took office, gas was priced at $2.39 per gallon. In addition, the current average gas price, per AAA, is $3.761, NOT $3.39.
Also, the price of gas is expected to skyrocket once more as soon as the president stops releasing oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve after the midterm elections.
Biden’s weekly whoppers: NOT experiencing record inflation, gas was over 5$ a gallon when I took office https://t.co/oYpVnyPkfH
— American Wire News (@americanwire_) October 28, 2022
The point is these lies used to go under the radar. But not anymore — or at least not when the lies are told on Elon Musk’s Twitter …
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