President Obama is perhaps the most technologically-savvy presidents the US has ever had. He enjoys listening to music on his Ipod, uses his Blackberry to keep in contact at all times, and has launched a web site “Reality Check” designed to counter what he considers blatant misinformation regarding the health care reform debate.
During his campaign, the President used this same tactic to defeat his opponents by debunking some of the negative campaign information that was circulating at the time. It appears to be a winning tactic, as Obama handily won the election. But will this tactic work for health care reform?
The debate has been fierce, with those opposed to Obama’s health reform campaign making claims that Obama’s plan will mean health care rationing, euthanasia for seniors whose health care bills are expensive and an end to Medicare, among others. The web site showcases several of Obama’s administration members debunking the myths surrounding Obama’s reform plan.
Some of the featured segments on the website include commentaries from administration heavyweights such as Robert Kocher of the National Economic Council, Linda Douglass of the White House Office of Health Reform, Melody Barnes, the President's Director of the Domestic Policy Council, and Matt Flavin, Director of Veterans and Wounded Warrior Policy.
It remains to be seen whether or not the web site will be an effective tool for winning the hearts and minds of those vehemently opposed to Obama’s health care reform plan.Citing 'baseless smears,' White House launches Reality Check Web site
The White House has also launched a Web site to counter critics. In an update on behalf of the White House Media Affairs Office, citizens can log on to the “Reality Check” portion of the site that gives viewers official government updates and information about health care reform as it happens.
The office commented in a Tuesday e-mail update to news editors and subscribers that it is, “a Web site dedicated to debunking the misinformation and baseless smears that are cropping up daily as part of the national debate on health care. The site gives administration officials and experts a place to refute viral misinformation with an aggressive, direct response, and it allows people to take the information into their own hands and share it with friends, family and colleagues through social networks.”
The Web site lists health care statistics and reform considerations that are tailored to each state.