The president’s supporters have a multipronged counterargument: Either he didn’t make those comments or they were taken out of context or even if they are in context they don’t matter because we should be reading between the lines. …

I remain in awe of Dave’s dogged and enterprising journalism, but I don’t believe he can “tell” when the president is saying one thing but apparently meaning something else. I’m also not clear on what Dave’s getting at by selectively boldfacing the sentences “Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If you’ve got a business — you didn’t build that.” You could just as easily prove the opposite by boldfacing “If you’ve got a business — you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.” Either way, there’s no prettying up these lines. Exactly who is playing context games here?