Investor's Business Daily goes looking for Hawaii earthquake, apparently doesn't check own paper

It's been a bad few days for Investor's Business Daily's editorial board. On Wednesday, the paper tried to bolster its own flawed health care poll by noting that a survey conducted by a medical recruitment company called the Medicus Firm using a dubious methodology confirmed its results. According to IBD, the survey “was published as an insert in the New England Journal of Medicine - one of the most prestigious medical journals in the world”; the paper suggested that NEJM's editors had reviewed the survey to confirm its accuracy. Unfortunately for them, Media Matters contacted NEJM and learned that IBD's speculation was risibly false.

Not content to rest on their laurels, last night the paper published an editorial doubling down on the falsehood bubbling up from Fox News and the right-wing blogosphere that President Obama was incorrect in stating during a Fox News interview that Hawaii suffered an earthquake in 2006. IBD wrote::

“By the time the vote has taken place, not only I will know what's in it, you'll know what's in it, ... ” the president assured - sort of. But for the record, he said he's all for giving Louisiana millions of dollars because the state had gone through a “national emergency” - just like Hawaii when an earthquake hit.

We're still checking on that Hawaii reference. But even if there's been no such quake, we doubt the media would make much of the gaffe. This isn't George W. Bush, after all.

What a bank shot! IBD doesn't know if Obama is right or not... but if he's not, the media wouldn't call him on it anyway!

Here's a little help for the folks at IBD (their ability to find facts is somewhat dubious, so they probably need it): Do a Nexis search for “investor's business daily and Hawaii and earthquake.” The first result is your editorial. The seventh includes the following news brief:

Earthquakes hit harder in Alaska

Alaska and Calif. were No. 1 and 2 in a survey based on the biggest earthquake each year from 1898-2005. Alaska's average top temblor was magnitude 6.7 vs. 6.02 for Calif. The study by the Nevada Seismological Laboratory is an effort to get the 10 shakiest states to build quake-resistant structures, especially after Hawaii's 6.7 temblor, which caused $50 mil in damage. Nev., Hawaii and Wash. rounded out the top 5 seismically active states.

On the other hand, it's understandable that IBD would not want to rely on their own newspaper for factual information. So they can try this instead: Search Wikipedia for “Hawaii earthquake.” The first result is “2006 Hawaii earthquake.” Read it.