Sunday, February 22, 2009

(Mis)Information Update

My last piece mentioned information contained in another blog on my website (The Girl Math Analyst on
The Girl Math Analyst had included a partial list of items receiving money from the recently passed Economic Stimulus Package. Here's the website where that list came from:
The following disclaimer is displayed at the top of the page: is a user-generated site. That means the stories submitted by users are not edited, fact-checked or screened before they post. Only stories marked "On CNN" have been vetted for use in CNN news coverage.
Basically, this site is a blog. As stated in my last piece, verifying the accuracy of information on the internet can be nearly impossible. But one thing's for sure-if it's a blog it's immediately suspect. Pure and simple. In fact at the top of The Blog Spot page on my website, I quote Mark Twain: "Get your facts first. Then you can distort them as much as you please."
The closest I've been able to get to a detailed list of Stimulus Package spending is a 13 page summary from the Congressional Record. The actual list is hundreds of pages long. I'm not sure who's read it, if anyone. More's the pity. Shouldn't they have taken the time to analyze this a little longer? That, by the way, was exactly the point The Girl Math Analyst was attempting to make. But the issue here isn't the Stimulus Package. It's where we get the information to support our opinions. Our opinions may be valid, but if the information we present is bogus, who's going to believe us? That's the point. OK, enough with this. On to more pleasant things. Stay tuned.

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