‘But what part did the victim play in instigating the assailant?’

Limning an objectivity as real as the Easter Bunny, fact checkers change no one’s mind and serve no purpose except as sources from which to cut and paste to counter your conservative aunt’s barrage of nonsense on Facebook. Fact checker columns represent one of the purer bastions of both-sides-do-it, and I would have thought the Associated Press, in an otherwise decent job of fisking the president’s absurd, dangerous prime time address last night, realized that, as Yeats wrote, all has changed, changed utterly. But:

THE DEMS

HOUSE SPEAKER NANCY PELOSI: “The fact is: President Trump has chosen to hold hostage critical services for the health, safety and well-being of the American people and withhold the paychecks of 800,000 innocent workers across the nation – many of them veterans.” — response to Trump’s remarks.

SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER, Senate Democratic leader: “The president of the United States – having failed to get Mexico to pay for his ineffective, unnecessary border wall, and unable to convince the Congress or the American people to foot the bill – has shut down the government.” — response to Trump.

THE FACTS: That’s one way to look at it. But it takes two sides to shut down the government. Trump’s demand for $5.7 billion for his border wall is one reason for the budget impasse. The refusal of Democrats to approve the money is another.

It takes two sides. When a mugger threatens a woman on the street, her clothes and manner of walking played in some part in making him do it.

This is the same errant nonsense motivating reporters to quote climate change deniers.

(h/t Lawyers, Guns & Money)

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