Monday, September 6, 2010

Let's Debunk Those Obama Myths

According to the results of a study on facts versus beliefs conducted at the University of Michigan and discussed in an August 25 blog on ThePoint, the debunking of myths and lies about President Obama may not fit the belief system many Obama detractors have developed. Therefore, many of these detractors will continue to believe these myths in order too justify and support their incorrect belief system about Obama.

The accurate facts about Obama may have little impact on these people, and in fact, according to the study, the corrected information may act to more strongly reinforce the incorrect and inaccurate views of these detractors. The study found that people tend to interpret information with an eye toward reinforcing their preconceived notions, and then, when shown correct information, sometimes tend to "dig their heels in" for fear of being proven wrong.

But we will review the myths and the CORRECT information (provided by Jonathan Alter in Newsweek cover story this week) anyway and see what happens:

Myth #1: President Obama was born outside of the United States. Fact: All tabloid "proof" has been debunked as crude forgery. A clear copy of his State of Hawaii birth certificate, with seal, has been provided by the press. I have a copy saved on my computer hard drive.

Myth#2: President Obama is a Muslim. Fact: He was raised by an atheist and became a practicing Christian in his 20s. He spent 20 years in the Christian congregation of Rev. Jeremiah Wright in Chicago.

Myth#3: President Obama's policies are socialist. Fact: He explicitly rejected advice to nationalize the banks and has stated clearly that he wants government out of General Motors and Chrysler as quickly as possible.

Myth #4: President Obama is a warmonger. Fact: He promised in 2008 to withdraw from Iraq and escalate war in Afghanistan and has done both.

Myth #5: President Obama is a coddler of terrorists. Fact: He has already order the killing of more high value al Qaeda terrorists in 18 months than his predecessor did in 8 years.

Myth #6: He is a coddler of Wall Street. Fact: His financial reform package, while watered down by Republicans, was the most vigorous since the New Deal.

Myth #7: He is an enemy of American business and small business. Fact: He favors tax credits for small business, which were stymied by the GOP to deprive him of victory. Sunday, the President of the National Small Business Assoc. endorsed Obama's small business jobs bill which provides $12. billion in tax relief to small business.

This is only a short list of the many myths about the President.

There is no problem with us differing politically and philosophically about how to approach the problems of the world. But let's try hard to be intellectually honest with each other and to not let our emotions blur fact and blur our best judgement.

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