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Posted by on Dec 20, 2009 in Health, Media, Politics, Society | 4 comments

A Well-Deserved Honor

From PolitiFact:

Of all the falsehoods and distortions in the political discourse this year, one stood out from the rest.

“Death panels.”

The claim set political debate afire when it was made in August, raising issues from the role of government in health care to the bounds of acceptable political discussion. In a nod to the way technology has transformed politics, the statement wasn’t made in an interview or a television ad. Sarah Palin posted it on her Facebook page.

Her assertion — that the government would set up boards to determine whether seniors and the disabled were worthy of care — spread through newscasts, talk shows, blogs and town hall meetings. Opponents of health care legislation said it revealed the real goals of the Democratic proposals. Advocates for health reform said it showed the depths to which their opponents would sink. Still others scratched their heads and said, “Death panels? Really?”

The editors of, the fact-checking Web site of the St. Petersburg Times, have chosen it as our inaugural “Lie of the Year.”

PolitiFact readers overwhelmingly supported the decision. Nearly 5,000 voted in a national poll to name the biggest lie, and 61 percent chose “death panels” from a field of eight finalists. (See the complete results.)

The genesis of this lie is also at PolitiFact.

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Copyright 2009 The Moderate Voice
  • Leonidas

    Well there were some doozies this year, the Bill Sparkman incident comes to mind. But I think my vote would have to go for Ezra Klein when he slandered Joe Lieberman::

    “That is to say, he seems willing to cause the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people in order to settle an old electoral score.”

    Palin likely beat Klein because she is more famous, had it been say Joe Biden and not a more obscure person, who said it instead Palin would have finished second.

  • kathykattenburg

    Oh, and that article by Michael Goldfarb where he fabricated a story about Pres. Obama threatening Ben Nelson with the closure of Offutt Air Base unless he voted for health reform — that comes to mind also.

  • Leonidas

    Yup a lot of doozies, that one also gets on the list, but again a more obscure figure..I would say this one too
    To achieve health care reform, “I’m going to have all the negotiations around a big table. We’ll have doctors and nurses and hospital administrators. Insurance companies, drug companies — they’ll get a seat at the table, they just won’t be able to buy every chair. But what we will do is, we’ll have the negotiations televised on C-SPAN, so that people can see who is making arguments on behalf of their constituents, and who are making arguments on behalf of the drug companies or the insurance companies. And so, that approach, I think is what is going to allow people to stay involved in this process.”–Barack Obamabut it was said in 2008 not 2009

  • katievw

    Doesn’t matter that SP told the biggest lie, or that her biggest talent is spreading half-truths or outright lies. All politicans lie, and definitely all political commercials lie. Sarah Palin just does it with a prettier face and a folksier attitude. Really sad that she has a following who defend her so vigorously. People really do hear only what they want to hear.

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