Truthiness is "a quality characterizing a "truth" that a person making an argument or assertion claims to know intuitively "from the gut" or because it "feels right" without regard to evidence, logic, intellectual examination, or facts." (Stephen Colbert, October 17, 2005) It is important to know about because of the dialog used by some people in the news who resort to this rhetorical device.
Everyone has intuition, and it is often useful. But if you assume that it alone will carry the day in a research paper you are wrong as your professor will look for evidence supporting all arguments. It is also a fallacy to believe that citing a number of news cites from one political spectrum will win your arguement as (1) it often results in a paper that fails to document the whole picture and (2) Political Science professors know the slant of different news sources and can detect papers that use news sources that only paint one side of a picture.
In order to understand more about political slants of different news sources it is useful to consult a number of additional tools that can aid you in understanding more about news sources. These include:
Simply watching or reading the news is not enough. One must also be able to discern accuracy or spin. In order to become a critical consumer of the news you must:
While Think Tanks are not the same as news organizations, they often influence political discussions in the news. So it is important to undertand not just politcal party ideolologies and various news organizations, it is also important to understand the leaning of each Think Tank if you hear them cited in a news story.