Obama’s cabinet: Neal Boortz spreads hoax smear, months after debunking


Neal Boortz, the Georgia-based radio broadcaster, goes beyond irresponsible journalism.  After we caught Boortz spreading false tales about Hilary Clinton last year, I proceeded to ignore him.

Traffic links pointed to Boortz this morning — now we find he’s spreading a hoax about Obama’s cabinet’s qualifications, months after the guy who started the false story caught his error and retracted it.  [July 4, 2011 – If that link doesn’t work, try this link to Boortz’s archive.]

That’s not just irresponsible and sloppy:  Boortz clearly has a grudge and will tell any falsehood to push his agenda of hatred.

Birds of a feather:  Texas deficit champion Rick Perry with Neil Boortz, who tells whoppers about Clinton and Obama

Birds of a feather: Texas deficit champion Rick Perry, who refused to talk about his $18 billion deficit in Texas, with Neil Boortz, who spread a hoax about Hillary Clinton in 2008, and now spreads old hoaxes about President Obama.

Boortz posts this at his site, probably as a warning for what his philosophy of reporting is:

“When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men living together in society, they create for themselves in the course of time a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that justifies it.”

Frederic Bastiat

Just before Thanksgiving last year, a J. P. Morgan official wrote a humorous piece of conjecture for his weekly newsletter — a week when most of the markets in the U.S. were closed, and so there was little news.  Michael Cembalest, the chief investment officer for J. P. Morgan, without serious research wrote a piece wondering about what he saw as a lack of private sector experience in Obama’s cabinet in those positions in Cembalest’s view that are concerned most with job creation.

The spin meisters at American Enterprise Institute abused Cembalest’s rank conjectures as a “research report,” created a hoax saying Obama’s cabinet is the least qualified in history, and the thing went viral among otherwise ungainfully-employed bloggers (a lot like Neil Boortz).

Cembalest retracted his piece when he saw, in horror, what had happened (but not before I was too rough on him in poking much-deserved holes in the AEI claim).

Cembalest called me before the end of that week, noting that he’d retracted the piece.

Nearly eight months later, full of vituperation but bereft of information, today Neil Boortz resurrected the hoax story on his blog (on his radio program, too? I’ll wager Boortz is double dipping with his false-tale telling . . .).

Here’s a series of falsehoods Boortz told:

Last year J.P. Morgan thought it might be interesting to look into the private sector experience of Obama’s Cabinet. America, after all, was in the middle of an economic disaster and the thought was that the president might actually look to some people with a record of success in the private sector for advice. So a study is done comparing Obama’s Cabinet to the cabinets of presidents going back to 1900. secretaries of State, Commerce, Treasury, Agriculture, Interior, Labor, Transportation, Energy and Housing and Urban Development were included. The J.P Morgan study looked at the percentages of cabinet members with prior private sector experience, and the results were amazing.

The presidential cabinet with the highest percentage of private sector experience was that of Dwight Eisenhower at around 58%. The lowest — until Obama — was Kennedy at about 28%. The average ran between 35% and 40% … until, as I said, Obama. Care to guess what percentage of Obama’s cabinet has prior private sector experience? Try 7%.

Here’s a start at the truth — try 11 times the experience Boortz credits:

All totaled, Obama’s cabinet is one of the certifiably most brainy, most successful and most decorated of any president at any time.  His cabinet brings extensive and extremely successful private sector experience coupled with outstanding and considerable successful experience in government and elective politics.

AEI’s claim that the cabinet lacks private sector experience is astoundingly in error, with 77% of the 22 members showing private sector experience — according to the [standards of the] bizarre chart [from AEI], putting Obama’s cabinet in the premiere levels of private sector experience.  The chart looks more and more like a hoax that AEI fell sucker to — and so did others.

Boortz is eight months late, and the whole truth short.  Shame on him.

Not just false stuff — old, moldy false stuff.   Atlantans, and all Americans, deserve better reporting, even from hack commentators.

_____________

Coda:  Sage advice, but . . .

Boortz includes this warning on his website:

ALWAYS REMEMBER
Don’t believe anything you read on this web page, or, for that matter, anything you hear on The Neal Boortz Show, unless it is consistent with what you already know to be true, or unless you have taken the time to research the matter to prove its accuracy to your satisfaction. This is known as “doing your homework.”

Great advice — but no excuse for sloppy reporting.  He should follow his own rule.  On this piece, Boortz didn’t do his homework in any fashion.  He’s turning in somebody else’s crap, without reading it in advance, it appears.

26 Responses to Obama’s cabinet: Neal Boortz spreads hoax smear, months after debunking

  1. […] tempest over the false claims that President Obama’s cabinet lacked business experience (also here and here), this headline must have made you […]

    Like

  2. mahilena says:

    Today thru a CNN interview Neil Boortz again seems tobe spreading lies…Don Lemon asked him about his thoughts on the Arizona Sherif’s comments on vitriolic language and he just took the opportunity to turn the conversation around saying Obama is the first making vitriolic statements such as “punish your enemies”…”victory with Republicans will require guns” and a whole bunch of other false statements about the President ….as some commented on this post this Neil Boortz is a pig….well said

    Like

  3. Ed Darrell says:

    Will I catch the disease simply by reading your stuff?

    You might learn something. Knowledge is a powerful tool, and I can’t be responsible for what you do, if you get informed.

    Like

  4. Jim Stanley says:

    Hi Kim!

    Ah, I dunno if I believe in Keynes or Smith or Robert Reich. I know I usually agree with Paul Krugman. But I can’t say I believe in him.

    What I believe is that to whom much is given, much is required. What I believe is that nations are judged on the basis of how they treat the least and the last. What I know, historically, is that those nations that put the poor and the needy first are blessed.

    And curiously, when the tax rates in this country were the highest (on both business and the wealthiest citizens) everyone prospered. When taxes were cut on those groups, prosperity for all declined.

    To me, it’s ultimately not really a matter of what’s pragmatic or what’s pleasing to the powerful. It’s a matter of what’s just. But I realize everyone’s mileage on this varies…and I don’t, for a minute, believe that those who disagree with me are greedy bastards who hate poor people. :-)

    Like

  5. Ellie says:

    Dear Kim,

    I’m a 63 old woman with few marketable skills outside of retail. Spent most of my adult life as a SAHM and volunteer. I lost my job because my store closed and I haven’t been able to find another full time job. I’d like a job and don’t want to go on the dole.

    If you find a “conservative” or a Republican who really gives a rat’s behind whether or not I have a job, trot her out, I might even vote for her. I live in NY, if that’s any help. Most “conservatives” I’ve heard would be happier if, at my age, I would lie down and die — preferably without any “heroic” intervention to keep me alive.

    None of this seems particularly relevant to a talk show personality who baldly states that one should not believe what he says.

    Like

  6. kim says:

    But, since you seem helpful and friendly, I’ll respond in kind to the rest of your comment. You and I have a fundamentally different take on the economy. You believe in Keynes and I don’t. And I believe in the Laffer curve. We need more people productively working rather than more on the dole. Frankly, it’s our only chance.
    ==========================

    Like

  7. kim says:

    Look, this was about members of ‘Obama’s cabinet in those positions in Cembalist’s view that are concerned most with job creation’. Is distraction the common sophistry at this site? Will I catch the disease simply by reading your stuff?
    ==================

    Like

  8. Jim Stanley says:

    Hi there, Kim!

    In your recent post, you say… >>”Heckuva job those cabinet members are doing at job creation.”<<

    Can you articulate which cabinet members you're specifically referring to? Do you know which ones are responsible, at least in part, for job creation? I'd be a little taken aback if you wanted to indict the entire cabinet. Presumably, a Secretary of State, a Secretary of Defense, an Attorney General and, in fact, most of the cabinet have little or nothing to do with job creation.

    As to the overall record, it's not pretty. You might want to check the link below out. When Representative Maloney made that state, even I (a Democrat) was a bit plussed when I heard her say it. Could it possibly be true? Evidently, it is. At least, it stands up to the rigorous review of the relentlessly non-partisan Politifact.com. Take a peek…

    http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2010/jan/25/carolyn-maloney/congresswoman-says-democratic-presidents-create-mo/

    Excuses? Yeah, I know. When the numbers for Ronald Reagan were bad, it was Carter's fault. When they were bad for George H.W. Bush, it was still Carter's fault. When they were bad for George W. Bush, the right argued it was Bill Clinton's fault. I am slow. But I am detecting a pattern here.

    Now, I'm not going to argue that President Obama, Secretaries Solis, Geithner and Locke are doing a great job on the economy. What's needed is a helluva lot more spending in the form of a much-less-timid stimulus. Oh, and a more generous dole. So yeah, I'm not delighted with the first 18 months by any stretch. And while I'm tempted to blame The Decider, I'm not terribly comfortable resorting to typically Republican excuses about "the previous administration".

    Let's just say, I'm thanking my lucky stars Americans chose the monumentally lesser of two evils in 2008. A third Bush term does not give off the scent of economic growth.

    Like

  9. kim says:

    Heckuva job those cabinet members are doing at job creation.
    ===================

    Like

  10. Ed Darrell says:

    You’re Making Sh– Up, Tim. CNN was not in league with Saddam Hussein, at least, not so much as you are.

    Your view of how the world works is truly screwed up.

    Like

  11. Tim says:

    The fact remains CNN covered up reports of murder, torture, and planned assassinations in order to maintain CNN’s Baghdad bureau. Of course Jordan tries to couch it in terms to make him look like he was only saving lives or whatever. He even admits Iraqi officials told him Saddam was a madman and needed to be removed. Do you think they reported that? No

    Your problem is you want to focus on talk hosts and entertainers because you don’t like their message. I never said Boortz was right I just believe he’s inconsequential. Get the actual journalists to tell the truth and stop being shills for politicians of any stripe that’s what I want to see. I want to see journalists stand up to politicians and ask the hard questions like Luke Russert did with Charlie Rangle last week. But you probably think Rangle is being harrassed because he’s black not because he’s committed crimes.

    Like

  12. Jim Stanley says:

    Nick,

    Excellent point, my friend. As one blogger said, “Of course Saddam has WMDs! Don Rumsfeld has the receipts!”

    An overstatement to be sure, but the heart of the barb is well aimed. The link below is informative.

    http://www.ratical.org/ratville/CAH/USmadeIraq.html

    Like

  13. Nick K says:

    So tell us, Tim, are you going to accuse Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld and others of covering up and dismissing Iraqi atrocities against its own civilians?

    Oh you didn’t know? Back during the 80’s when Saddam was gassing his own people the Reagan administration not only supported him and armed him but turned a blind eye to what he was doing.

    Tell me..if the Republicans were so gungho to take out Saddam when he was murdering his own people..why didnt they do so then?

    Like

  14. Ed Darrell says:

    In a shocking New York Times opinion piece, CNN’s chief news executive Eason Jordan has admitted that for the past decade the network has systematically covered up stories of Iraqi atrocities. Reports of murder, torture, and planned assassinations were suppressed in order to maintain CNN’s Baghdad bureau.

    Wait a minute. You were complaining about a liberal bias in reporting. This doesn’t say anything close to that. It’s a horror story, not of suppressed news, but of the inability to get the full story out. How does this story of horror in Saddam Hussein’s Iraq say anything other than it was time for Saddam to go?

    Certainly Eason’s story does not say that CNN was complicit in Saddam Hussein’s treachery. They were victims.

    That piece denies all your other claims against journalists.

    It’s a horrible story. It reveals some of the prices real journalists pay to get the story back to us.

    Especially, it does not excuse Neal Boortz’s prevarications now. It demonstrates the importance of getting the truth out. It does not justify in any way Boortz’s inventions against Obama’s cabinet.

    Like

  15. chamblee54 says:

    The NYT piece was dated 2003.

    Like

  16. Tim says:

    In a shocking New York Times opinion piece, CNN’s chief news executive Eason Jordan has admitted that for the past decade the network has systematically covered up stories of Iraqi atrocities. Reports of murder, torture, and planned assassinations were suppressed in order to maintain CNN’s Baghdad bureau.

    Read Jordan’s op-ed at:
    http://www.nytimes.com/2003/04/11/opinion/11JORD.html

    Like

  17. Jim Stanley says:

    Fascinating…

    Boortz includes this warning on his website:

    ALWAYS REMEMBER
    Don’t believe anything you read on this web page, or, for that matter, anything you hear on The Neal Boortz Show, unless it is consistent with what you already know to be true, or unless you have taken the time to research the matter to prove its accuracy to your satisfaction. This is known as “doing your homework.”

    So Neal feels he can be excused from bearing false witness against other human beings because he offers a CYA disclaimer on his web site?

    What about common decency and civility? What about simply doing the right thing? Perhaps the problem with Boortz, Breitbart, Limbaugh, Beck, O’Reilly, Hannity and all the others is that they can’t generate enough interest on the part of their viewers, readers, listeners…without lying. In short, perhaps their policy beefs with liberals or the President aren’t sexy enough to keep the mouth-breathers sated? Perhaps these hosts, their viewers, or both, are incapable of comprehending substantive, complicated issues in the first place. They continually deride and discount intellect and academia as suspect to begin with. In other words, they know they haven’t the cerebral heft, moral integrity or creative skill to sustain interest in discussions of environmental policy, the minutiae of the health care reform bill or a comprehensive series plumbing the depths of an issue like nuclear arms control or elmination. So…

    …better to fulminate about Commies (it worked for Father Coughlin) and Beelzebama (it works for James Dobson and Pat Robertson). When in doubt, make it up! It will keep all the ridge runners well sated and glued to their TVs, radios and computer screens.

    Thanks Ed. Nice work, as always.

    Like

  18. chamblee54 says:

    You should not wrestle with a pig. You will only get dirty, and the pig enjoys it.
    Ditto a comment battle with an admirer of Neal Boortz. (spell check suggestions:Boorish,Boor,Booster,Boozer).
    As radio whiners go, Neal is one of the less offensive ones. Just don’t believe everything you hear, and keep the off switch handy.
    If you have too much free time, do a google advanced search for Neal Boortz at http://chamblee54.wordpress.com/ and http://chamblee54.blogspot.com/ The posts about the “fair tax” and Neal’s military record are amusing.

    Like

  19. Ed Darrell says:

    It’s really too bad you get your knickers all in a knot over what a talk show host says and wast time correcting a story Boortz likely posted in good faith believing his source was correct while the real media out there who are supposed to adhere to and ethical code tell lies to us daily.

    We’ve already determined that Boortz doesn’t act in good faith. If he found that story on the internet — and what other source is there for it? — he found the debunkings, and the updates, and he ignored them. Crappy behavior, irresponsible behavior, potentially libelous, and excremental journalism, which is the profession he’s paid for now whether he wants to think of himself as one or not.

    In terms of citizenship, Tim, Boortz’s actions fall short of the Rotary Club’s Four-Way test. His actions fall short of what I’d expect of a 15-year old, Second Class Boy Scout. I expect any adult to be able to live up to standards of truthfulness that a Cub Scout could. Boortz hasn’t done that here, not yet.

    His being “not a journalist” doesn’t excuse him from being a good citizen.

    So, his unethical behavior can’t be excused.

    Where were you when Dan Rather falisfied documents to try and smear George Bush so he’d lose an election?

    First, I wasn’t blogging — but second, Dan Rather didn’t falsify documents. Others did. However, those falsified documents did not tell a false story. You miss one of the great tragedies of that whole incident: Those people in a position to know testified, under oath, that Bush didn’t fill his duties, but was excused because others intervened to save his tail.

    That was what Rather reported, and it was accurate. One of the the sources of the story thought it would help things to have documents — as the producers had asked.

    Lost in the hoo-haw was the fact that the story was true. Rather lost his job not because he made up the story, but because the true story he told was reinforced with false documents.

    See, people who use the public airwaves need to be like Caesar’s wife, well above suspicion. Rather lost his job for telling the truth with false documents.

    In this case, Boortz is telling falsehoods with false documents. By your standards, shouldn’t Boortz be out on his ear?

    This would be a good forum for you call for Boortz to be fired, or resign in a fit of good ethics. How soon will you put out your statement?

    Where were you when CNN was soft pedaling Saddam to the American people to protect their honey hole in Iraq?

    That didn’t happen. You falsely accuse. CNN investigated. Even CNN strives for accuracy.

    Or when the New York Times admitted to just making stuff up and printing it as truth?

    The New York Times had a rogue reporter. The Times itself discovered the falsehoods, exposed it, and fired the reporter.

    Wasn’t blogging at the time. We discussed it in my business law class at a local outlet of higher education, and one of my students actually included the incident as part of a paper. But I had no outlet to publish beyond what was done then by others, better than I could.

    Again, that example rather requires Boortz to resign, doesn’t it?

    In no case do these examples excuse Boortz’s misbehaviors, and wehn we look at them, they seem to suggest Boortz should hang up his mic, as a point of honor. Has he any?

    Or did you take offense and do a piece this week when it was revealed that A group of liberal journalists in 2008 sought to sweep under the rug the Rev. Jeremiah Wright scandal that threatened to derail then-Sen. Barack Obama’s presidential campaign? http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2010/07/20/liberal-journalists-reportedly-plotted-protect-candidate-obama-jeremiah-wright/

    Fox News is a source of fiction, mostly. Did they publish that story? Let me see . . .

    Ah, I see how you’re own ability to discern facts has been twisted in collisions with Fox News. Read the story again.

    1. It assumes some scandal involving Jeremiah Wright, but it doesn’t say what the scandal was. There was no scandal. Wright said some things that were offensive. In direct repudiation of the behaviors of Republican politicians, Obama repudiated the words of Wright, the chief preacher at the church Obama had attended, and repudiated Wright himself.

    What scandal? Fox asserts a scandal, falsely. Will you add to your call a few more resignations?

    2. There is an assertion of a cabal of journalists that is not documented. Fox assumes that journalists get together to discuss and act in concert. No evidence of that — apparently there is a list-serv discussion group, and one member suggested that the coverage of the presidential campaign had gotten off-track — it had — and suggested others cover serious issues instead.

    An act of good citizenship.

    If you look at the actual coverage from that time, however, you’ll find that, sadly, journalists stuck with the Jeremiah Wright story. Most of them got that story right, but it was a major derailing of serious campaign coverage. You, for example, still think Jeremiah Wright was a significant campaign story, that it might have some impact today.

    So, ultimately, it seems to me that you’ve got no ground to stand on. You don’t make any adequate excuse for Boortz to publish stuff he knows to be false. You don’t make a good case that other journalists regularly publish false stuff — even your Fox News story could be just really crappy editing (they don’t do a good job of accurate writing, with their corporate policy to ignore Journalism 101).

    You strain at a gnat and swallow a camel.

    Boortz isn’t the gnat you make him out to be. He’s a human, presumably an American citizen, who has a duty not to tell whopping lies about our government and our president.

    You’ve not made a good case to excuse Boortz at all, nor have you made a case that we should ignore his malfeasances and pretend he’s a nonentity.

    Let us know as soon as you put out your call for Boortz to resign. He should correct this false story before he does that, or at the same time, of course.

    My knickers don’t knot. My Hemingway Solid Gold Sh– Detector™ goes off long before the knicker-twist mechanism kicks off. You should get yourself a Hemingway.

    Like

  20. Marion Delgado says:

    Boortz cultists will clutch at any straw they can see swirling around them as they go down the drain – and if there aren’t any, they’ll hallucinate one.

    Like

  21. Tim says:

    It’s really too bad you get your knickers all in a knot over what a talk show host says and wast time correcting a story Boortz likely posted in good faith believing his source was correct while the real media out there who are supposed to adhere to and ethical code tell lies to us daily.

    Where were you when Dan Rather falisfied documents to try and smear George Bush so he’d lose an election? Where were you when CNN was soft pedaling Saddam to the American people to protect their honey hole in Iraq? Or when the New York Times admitted to just making stuff up and printing it as truth?

    Or did you take offense and do a piece this week when it was revealed that A group of liberal journalists in 2008 sought to sweep under the rug the Rev. Jeremiah Wright scandal that threatened to derail then-Sen. Barack Obama’s presidential campaign? http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2010/07/20/liberal-journalists-reportedly-plotted-protect-candidate-obama-jeremiah-wright/

    You strain at a gnat and swallow a camel.

    Like

  22. Ed Darrell says:

    Look at that headline! See how easy it is to correct an error, Tim?

    Boortz didn’t correct his stuff from two years ago. He’s been apprised of of today’s errors now for about 12 hours — no action.

    He’s a coward as well as a prevaricator, according to you. That’s not excused by a lack of a claim to be a journalist.

    Like

  23. Ed Darrell says:

    Spelling’s important in journalism, Tim — but getting the story right, and not libeling people, is much more important.

    Boortz is an entertainer? That doesn’t give him the right to libel. He’s irresponsible, period, and he’s committed a rather grave civil offense.

    If Boortz wishes to be a credible broadcaster, he should get the story straight. He’s abusing the public airwaves. The FCC has been asleep on such issues of late, but that doesn’t excuse Boortz’s libel, or misuse of public domain.

    Thanks for catching the spelling error. Now go correct Boortz.

    Like

  24. Tim says:

    “Neil Boortz, the Georgia-based radio broadcaster, goes beyond irresponsible journalism”.

    First you mis-spell Boortz’s name (it’s NeAl not Neil), then you mischaracterize his occupation. Boortz has not ever been nor claimed to be a “Journalist”. So he is technically incapable of “irresponsible journalism”.

    He is a Radio talk host and as you point out your own self he warns people to do their own homework because as he’s said on many occaisions he will bull shit you just to see if you’re paying attention.

    If you want to have a credible blog it would seem to me that it would behoove you to learn to spell correctly and to learn the definition of “journalism” before you take upon yourself to correct others.

    Like

  25. […] Obama's cabinet: Neil Boortz spreads hoax smear, months after … […]

    Like

  26. […] Obama’s cabinet: Neil Boortz spreads hoax smear, months after debunking « Millard Fillmo… says: July 23, 2010 at 1:15 pm […]

    Like

Please play nice in the Bathtub -- splash no soap in anyone's eyes. While your e-mail will not show with comments, note that it is our policy not to allow false e-mail addresses. Comments with non-working e-mail addresses may be deleted.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: