Thursday, August 09, 2012


The Wages of Sin

David Barton's aptly-named book, The Jefferson Lies, has been pulled by its Christian publisher, Thomas Nelson publishing company, because it has "lost confidence in the book's details," i.e. they've finally gloomed onto the fact that the "Jefferson lies" are all Barton's.

Evangelical Christian scholars have been hammering Barton's false history. Christian academics, Warren Throckmorton, Michael Coulter and Jon Fea have exposed Barton's lies. Conservative Christian publications, such as World magazine, assisted by Jay W. Richards, senior fellow at the Discovery Institute (you have to be an especially transparent liar to invoke the disdain of the Discovery [sic] Insitute), and First Things have been attacking Barton.

NPR has also noticed.

The last thing a con artist needs is exposure.

Hopefully, this is the beginning of Barton's end.

I listened to the NPR piece on my van radio and it was very interesting. Personally,I felt they were too tolerant towards Barton but they did expose enough examples of his misrepresentations, distortions and lies to make the point that he just another evangelical propagandist.
NPR is notorious for overdoing "tolerance". Not too long ago they had a report on the "pray away the gay" loonies that failed to fully represent the opposition. The good news was that they went back, admitted their mistake and rectified it by airing a long piece on why "reparative therapy" is bullshit.
It's the old problem of trying to get some journalists to understand that fairness and balance are not just about presenting two opposing views without any context. One of the critics of the NPR piece on reparative therapy rather nicely summed up what reporters sometimes seem to do, but shouldn't:

"Of course, this would be a challenging story to research. It's a whole lot easier for your reporter to just hand microphones to people on opposing sides of the issue and take the rest of the day off."
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