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December 18, 2014

Ebola Panic Wins 'Lie Of The Year,' But The Real Culprit Goes Free

PolitiFact says that one of the factors its researchers weigh when determining the "Lie Of The Year" is the extent to which "a myth or falsehood infiltrates conventional thinking." There's no doubt that America's first Ebola outbreak provided a fertile space for the paranoid style in American public health crises, a space in which outsized panic and conspiracy flourished. So why does this feel oddly unsatisfying as a "Lie Of The Year?" Maybe because lots of what was wrong about the way people talked about Ebola was less about an active attempt to deceive, and more about people simply being complete idiots.

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