Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Sublime Bloviations: "PolitiFlub: Udderly confused by EPA milk regs"

 Crossposted from Sublime Bloviations.


(link to story at

That's President Obama from yesterday's State of the Union Address.

(clipped from

The latter rating came from PolitiFact Virginia almost a full year ago.

On the face of it, one can imagine a reconciliation of the two rulings.  But it's doubtful if you've looked at the one for Obama after evaluating the one for Griffith.

The best part of it is that PolitiFact may have flubbed both rulings.  The EPA was leaning toward an exemption for homogenized milk.  But the exemption would not have covered raw milk, which should have left Griffith's claim at least partly true.  And if raw milk received no exemption from the EPA then Obama's claim is approximately half true as well.  A raw milk spill would still be treated just like an oil spill even after President Obama supposedly eliminated the rule that required a milk spill to be treated like an oil spill.

Welcome to the wonderful world of PolitiFact fact checking.

Update:  Looks like the EPA did get around to exempting all milk products from the rule. Griffith was still partially correct at worst, and President Obama did not eliminate an EPA rule.  Rather, Obama's EPA exempted milk from a rule that remains in effect.  And Obama's statement obscures the administration's vacillating actions on the issue:
"The Obama Administration pulled back the rule in January of 2009, then reissued it in November, and to large degree it was the same rule," Schlegel said.

Jeff adds (1/26/2012): This is more accurately a "Bryan adds" because I simply wanted to highlight something Bryan wrote on PolitiFact's Facebook page regarding this ruling. I think it exemplifies the "gimme" True's that PolitiFact grants to Obama:

"[T]he Bush administration had created an exemption for milk as it was leaving office. That exemption was one of those that Obama pulled back for re-examination when he took office. So the only reason he had the chance to save us from the EPA's application of oil spill rules to milk was by preventing Bush from fixing it first."

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