The Widdershins

Archive for October 25th, 2011

Does truth matter anymore?

Have we become so immune to the lies being fed us every day of the week that “truth” itself has gone out of fashion?  Particularly in the political world when these things should matter but don’t?   Does anyone care?

Sheer lies led us into an invasion of a country that had nothing to do with the 9/11 event yet here we are, almost 10 years later, arguing over whether we should go or stay when it is obvious we should never have gone in the first place. What WMDs after all?  The dead, wounded, and destruction were a result of a huge lie that has bled our nation dry and caused us the loss of any credibility in the global stage and no one has been held accountable.

Charming narratives involving presidential hopefuls are tossed around like fairy tales creating a picture of the candidate “coming up the hard way” as an example of an “American success story”.

Barack Obama laid claim to his mother living on food stamps, creating a picture of his upbringing as one rivaling a Dickens novel that was purely false. She may have had access to food stamps but it was partially based on her opportunities for further education and judging from his enrollment into some pretty prestigious schools along the way, he was never in danger of starving to death. Factor in his relationship to an absent father whom he met twice during his life, the other half of the narrative would have us believe that he was the product of two opposing cultures when the truth is that he was raised in a mostly white world.

The latest narrative to hit the airwaves involves Marco Rubio, a “rising star” in Republican circles, who has produced a “story” surrounding his parents immigration from Cuba. No doubt his parents left the island but it does raise the question of exactly when.  The “storyline” says they fled the Castro regime in 1959 but other reports suggest that they came here in 1956, three years before Castro had seized control of their country and only then caused the US to break off relations owing to the terror that followed.  In other words, had they left in 1956 it had little do with Castro but more to do with opportunity.  However, by moving the timeline up by 3 years invites a different picture altogether. Why let the facts stand in your way when a more “dramatic presentation” enhances your profile? 

Presented with possible “misstatements” Marco bristles at the suggestion that he may have possibly “invented” the scenario for his own political purposes. How dare anyone challenge his timeline?  Fled or left, what’s the difference?   A whole lot if you are paying attention to the “fairy tale” this one is attempting to create.

Wasn’t it Mitt who alluded to his own father marching on behalf of the civil rights movement when it was then reported that he did no such thing? Didn’t Michele Bachmann refer to “retraining camps” about to be set up across the country following Obama’s election? And Rick Perry was “unaware” of the “niggerhead stone” since he took another route onto the property?  Believe that one and I have a bridge to sell that you will just love!

As a mother of 4 kids I can almost consider myself an “expert” in this area of truth telling.  Shifty eyes, hangdog expressions, slouching posture, bundled along with “the teacher doesn’t like me” as one excuse for a bad grade, and I never resorted to a lie detector to know someone was about to lay on a “big one” in order to avoid the consequences.  Best to “fess up” before digging the hole any deeper because I was always able to get to the bottom of the mendacity of whose fault it was for the dangling spaghetti hanging from the ceiling.  My own homegrown “bullshit monitor” never failed.  And though I found myself secretly admiring the most “creative stories’ they threw my way, no one was ever rewarded for being the “most inventive”.

You rarely get an “oops” from these people.  It’s always the fault of someone else, or the intrusive media that has bothered to examine some of the bilge called into question. Instead we are never surprised at the “spin” that arrives when one of these jokers is caught in a lie.  The newest one has now become my favorite: “ too tired from campaigning to be held accountable”.  But isn’t this what campaigning is all about?  Putting out facts to support your case with the belief that you are to be taken seriously?

How does one go about “trusting” these people when “push comes to shove”?  How do we trust that what they are “selling” by going to war is the truth? If you can lie about the little things there is nothing to prevent you from standing behind a “whopper” that puts us all at risk.

The sad fact is that Rubio is no different from most politicians who strive for power.  Lying is second nature to many of them so what’s one more?  “Flip flopping” positions from one week to the next are lies, not a “shift” that serves as an “epiphany” they would have us accept.  Inserting “made up facts” is not political expediency but mindbending falsehoods.

Getting caught does not turn you into a “victim” but it does underscore your inability to work with the truth.  And why would I believe anything you have to say?

The truth is, I don’t.

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