Tabloid Headlines Can Be Literally True But Very Misleading

John Allen Paulos in his excellent column Who's Counting at ABC News:

Tabloids_091030_mn I must admit I read tabloid headlines while in line at supermarkets.

Often the headlines and stories are true enough in a literal sense, but seriously misleading. In this regard they're not always that different from some cable or mainstream media stories.

In any case, here are five possible tabloid stories followed by five brief explanations. You might want to figure out your own explanations before reading the ones here.

Can You Spot the Misleading Headlines?

1. Thousands to Die After Swine Flu Vaccination

Many public health authorities privately fear that there will be many heart attacks among older people and miscarriages among pregnant women occurring soon after these people are inoculated with the H1N1 vaccine. In fact, they expect there to be thousands of cases of this sad combination of events. Autism activists may take this as further reason to skip not just the H1H1 vaccine, but other childhood immunizations.

2. New Birther Claims About Obama Well-Documented

A new birther group has come up with incontrovertible evidence that President Obama was, in fact, born overseas and not in the contiguous United States. The documentation this time is rock solid, and there are reports that Obama himself has privately acknowledged the group's claim.

More here.