Political Lies

So, Hillary Clinton won the popular vote by 3 million votes, but lost the electoral vote. A very close election, by any measure.

Throughout the campaign, Trump and his cronies, and the GOP, told many, many blatant lies about Hillary and leveled many false accusations. These were not hidden or hard to check on lies, they were lies and accusations that could, and still can, be easily fact-checked and proven false.

As a result, Hillary lost the election, did not get the job she was applying for, lost a chance to make history, and also by any measure, was severely damaged as a person.

Now, I’m just a logical guy, and as such, I must bring up the obvious logical question. Just what logic or reasoning or law or regulation prevents Hillary from taking legal action against those whose lies caused her so much loss, heartache and damage to her reputation?

Surely slander, libel, defamation of character, and other legal remedies should be available to Hillary, and for that matter ANY politician, when outright lies about them cause such damage to their careers and reputations?

By what logical, reasonable, or sane reasons are political speeches and campaigns exempt from laws and regulations that govern every other kind of communication? If this were an individual who was applying for a high-paying job and did not get it because he or she was slandered on national television, surely legal action would be taken. Are those who have careers in public service and must be elected to get the positions they desire any less deserving of these protections?

As Donald Trump has so tragically demonstrated, American politics are rife with lies, deceit, and character assassinations, and the targets suffer just as much loss as those in the private sector. And with politics, the damage often extends way beyond the individuals involved to the entire country and even the world.

Is it not true that a voter who has been deceived into voting against her or his own self-interest has effectively had his or her right to vote denied? Is that, in itself, a crime against The Constitution?

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Simple Truths Number Seven

A series of simple statements, each on a graphic.

Feel free to download and/or share!

ST7

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American Political Myths – Both Parties are Equal

How often have we heard things like “all politicians lie” or “all politicians are corrupt?”  Is there truth in these statements?  Yes, some, but these statements also represent a classic fallacious argument and political tactic meant to deceive and manipulate.  Pointing out that a characteristic or two exists in two different groups, and using that to equate the two groups in all things is fallacious.  To insinuate that the American people would be just as bad off with Democrats as with Republicans in Congress because there are Democrats who have lied and been corrupt, just as there has been Republicans, is a very big deception.

There are many variables not being examined, and the tactic relies on the listeners making assumptions about those variables.  How many Democrats are lying vs Republicans?  How many lies are they telling?  What are they lying about, and what is the impact of those lies?  What is the motivation behind, and the goal of the lying?  A thorough examination of these variables to reveal the truth (instead of making assumptions), would result in a large majority of Republican-supporting Americans realizing that they have been deceived and manipulated.

The Republican Party is the party of the few, while the Democrats are the party of the many.  That is a fact that would mean very few Republicans being elected, if the fact was widely known and believed.  As a result, political survival dictates that the Republicans must lie, deceive, manipulate, and use hateful and racist tactics to cause enough Americans to vote against their own self interests for them to get elected.  Unfortunately, the “few” that the Republicans really represent are the wealthy, powerful, and elite in this country.  These people have the money and control of most of the information channels through which Americans get their information.  They can fund Republican election campaigns and disseminate the lies and deceptions to millions.

As I have said before, there are really only two kinds of Americans who support Republican politicians –  those deceiving and those being deceived.  The Republican base includes many extreme and single-issue groups, such as the gun lobby, anti-abortionists, and far-right religious groups.  Republicans will support the goals of these groups as long as it does not interfere with their real work of making the wealthy even richer and freeing big corporations to do anything they want.  These groups are probably deceiving themselves, blinded by their own irrationality, more then they are being deceived by the Republican politicians.

A much larger part of the Republican base are the good, solid, mostly rural, conservatively-bent, middle-class Americans who have strong beliefs in morality, family values, individualism, and American patriotism.  These are the real victims of the massive deception and manipulation campaign that has been perpetrated by Republican politicians and their big business and wealthy backers for years.  These are the people who are voting against their own self-interest based on false beliefs.  These are the ones being harmed the most.

The deception is massive, ongoing, and has been years in the making.  The very fact that the word “liberal” has become a dirty word is a testament to the power of deception from the Right.  Heinous ideas such as “people are poor not because they lack opportunity but because they lack initiative,” “people on welfare are only milking the system, “trickle-down economics is the best way to run the economy,” “homosexuality is a choice and will ruin the American family,” “illegal immigrants are taking jobs away from Americans,” and many more are not only blatantly false, but they turn concepts like tolerance, compassion, and helping your neighbor into evil things.

But even more effective and pervasive are the millions of hints, insinuations, arguments, and claims, all of which are false, that the Republican politicians and the Conservative media assault millions of Americans with on a daily basis.  This ongoing effort has turned the finest philosophies and concepts upon which this country was founded into what is wrong with America.  How twisted is that?  Tolerance, compassion, and open-mindedness has become “bleeding-heart liberalism.”  Social programs helping the most desperate and destitute Americans have become “entitlement programs” that are dragging down the economy.  Sexual orientations and religious preferences have become crimes against God and America.

More recently, with the success of Clinton and the coming of Obama, this Conservative/Republican power structure, which thought it had achieved full control and a “permanent Republican majority”, has become more and more angry and desperate.  They have stepped up their game, not only in frequency and volume, but also in their extremism.  Their lies have become blatant and less disguised, their rhetoric has become more extreme, un-American, and violent, and their lies have become larger, broader, and more dangerous.  Using the fully-owned and controlled media outlets such as Fox News, and the barely-sentient pundits like Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck, they are making even more extensive use of hate, racism, fear-mongering, intolerance, elitism, and any & all tactics they can come up with to deceive Americans into screwing their own pooch!

Democrats may embellish once in a while and a few members may go over the legal line once in a while, but overall, the Democrats are representing the middle class and poor with their efforts in Congress.  Democrats are trying to build the strong and free America envisioned by the Founding Fathers.  Republicans, on the other hand, are lock-step in a vicious class-warfare.  They act as if they were a single entity.  They freely use lies, deception, and manipulation to harm the vast majority of Americans.

The two parties are NOT equal!!!

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Change We Need

Republicans have a pretty sweet deal. They obstruct, lie, deceive, filibuster, and completely resist ANYTHING the Democrats try to do in Congress, and to appease them almost everything passed in Congress is watered down and made much less effective. Then when things do not get better because of the weakened legislation, the Republicans can say “see, we told you this is not good. We were right to fight against it.” They come out smelling like a rose and the Dems look bad.

There is ONLY one solution. Obama and the Democrats need to forget bipartisanship, they need to quit worrying about how many votes they are going to get, and they need to start using every process, trick, and procedure available to get done what they know is right! They need to fight the lies with facts and the truth, call out the Republicans for their lies, and adopt any and all tactics that will be effective in countering the obstructionism and lies of the Right. Let the Republicans filibuster all they want. Maybe those who believe their lies will start to see the light of truth. There are only two kinds of Republicans – those who lie and those who believe the lies.

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