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Perry’s Fantasyland

Presidential candidate Rick Perry is so against federal regulations that he is campaigning against regulations that don’t even exist!

According to an article in the Wall Street Journal, at two different speeches in Iowa this last week, Perry claimed “If you’re a tractor driver, if you drive your tractor across a public road, you’re gonna have to have a commercial driver’s license. Now how idiotic is that?”

It turns out that it was the state of Illinois that had briefly considered requiring certain farmers to have commercial vehicle licenses, but the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration put the kibosh on that, previously announcing “The common sense exemptions that allow farmers, their employers, and their families to accomplish their day-to-day work and transport their products to market” should remain in place. And Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood released a statement saying “We have no intention of instituting onerous regulations on the hardworking families who feed our country and fuel our economy.” And finally, U.S. Transportation Deputy Secretary John Porcari announced “We want to make it absolutely clear that farmers will not be subjected to new and impractical safety regulations.”

Apparently that wasn’t clear enough for Rick Perry. Now how idiotic is that?



  1. TENTHIRTYTWO wrote:

    He also commented that in Texas, they teach both creationism and evolution. But apparently they don’t.

    But you know, you’ve gotta pander to that religious base!

    Friday, August 19, 2011 at 6:54 am | Permalink
  2. Dan wrote:

    I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again, Rick Perry scares me. Apparently bending the truth about real things isn’t enough, now we have to make things up. Amazing how this guy thinks “Thou shall not lie” (actually it’s bear false witness, but that applies also) doesn’t apply to him.
    Think I’ll join the Republican party and caucus for Ron Paul.

    Friday, August 19, 2011 at 7:19 am | Permalink
  3. Patricia wrote:

    This is the continued diffusion of “not intended to be a factual statement” thinking, right?

    Maybe everyone should re-think the idea of “living in your own reality?????

    Friday, August 19, 2011 at 7:54 am | Permalink
  4. Sammy wrote:

    I know this is terrible and that two wrongs blah blah blah, but I would so very love it if the left wing of the media started in with lies about Perry, such as his association with the KKK and his real plans to secede from the union. And I’d love to see them hammer home the lies day after day after day after day until people actually believed them.

    Oh who am I kidding? Progressives wouldn’t fall for it the way neocons do.

    Friday, August 19, 2011 at 11:19 am | Permalink
  5. ebdoug wrote:

    Ik already posted this but it is worth repeat because it is so scary:

    Friday, August 19, 2011 at 6:06 pm | Permalink
  6. Jon Schuller wrote:

    Has America learned nothing from 8 years of George Bush & Friends? Mixing religion and politics, throw in some not-so-subtle scare tactics and Rick Perry becomes Bush Deja Vu. The only things missing are Karl Rove and Dick Cheney. What may become even more scary is that many Right-wingers will think he’s not far-right enough. Didn’t just talk about evolution?

    Friday, August 19, 2011 at 7:02 pm | Permalink
  7. Anonymous wrote:

    Sammy, are you saying Perry never mentioned pulling Texas out of the union? Well then, who was that dead ringer for Perry, with the caption Rick Perry, Gov of Texas at the bottom of the screen, that was ranting about the federal government and how Texas should secede from the union before taking a dime from (Democrat controlled)Washington. Well, except for the money coming in via militay industrial complex.

    Friday, August 19, 2011 at 10:29 pm | Permalink
  8. TENTHIRTYTWO wrote:

    “Our conclusion was that in a politically theatrical moment, Perry stated an old (and factually incorrect) claim that Texas retains the right to leave the union. That is not the same as his saying giddyap, I want to leave. Perry didn’t call for secession then and hasn’t since.”

    Saturday, August 20, 2011 at 7:54 am | Permalink
  9. starluna wrote:

    While I am perfectly happy to grant that Perry may not have called for secession in the way that the media made it sound, I do think this may be another one of those instances in which Politifact’s conclusion is very very questionable.

    First, I was curious that they only found 169 articles on the subject. Turns out that they may have been a little conservative in their search. When I did a Lexis search of “Rick Perry” AND “secede” OR “secession” I got over 2,200 hits from newspaper articles, news magazines (online and print), and TV and radio (including cable) news broadcast transcripts linking Rick Perry to the idea. Granted, much of this is reporting on the same incidents, but it does speak to a wider discussion around this issue that goes back much longer than 2009 than Politifact implies.

    This particular “investigation” has many problems with it. The first starts with interpreting Carney’s comment (as quoted by Maureen Dowd) as being directed at Rick Perry. They have no basis for that, especially considering that in the past two years, five state legislatures have passed resolutions around state sovereignty where not a few legislators stated that they interpreted the resolution as including the right to secede. But they continue on anyway to fact-checking the claim that Jay Carney made that Perry (specifically) “wants” TX to secede. In doing so they’ve set themselves up to the impossible task of looking for evidence of Perry’s motivation, rather than what his words conveyed to the various audiences he was speaking to.

    Why does Perry’s intention matter here when Carney’s intention does not? Perry has made many, very clear comments about state’s sovereignty and state’s rights, and the need to “bring back” the 10th Amendment, all of which fall in the penumbra of his only slightly vague remarks about secession. Whether he “wants” TX to secede is not really known to anyone except Perry himself. Moreover, this is less important than whether he makes it seem to certain audiences that he would support the secession of TX. From the whole record, he seems to give the clear impression that, if it came down to it, he would support secession.

    In this case, Politifact assumed Carney’s intention with no real justification, and then divined Perry’s intentions in a manner contrary to what the evidence offers. They also limited their investigation only to the word “secede” in their Lexis search, rather than the many words that convey the idea of secession to audiences that would see this as an attractive option.

    I rate Politifact’s method here as: unsatisfactory, inadequate, and internally inconsistent.

    Saturday, August 20, 2011 at 10:15 am | Permalink
  10. Sammy wrote:

    @Anonymous: you misunderstood my evil sarcasm.

    Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 12:48 am | Permalink