Friday, September 12, 2008

Does Lying Matter?

"I said thanks, but no thanks, to the bridge to nowhere."

Does anyone really care that this statement is exceedingly misleading at best and a bald-faced lie at worst. I think the latter is closer to the mark.

But does this matter? Should we care? Now telling me all the lies you think the Obamacrats might have told doesn't answer the question. That just gives us more lies to either care, or not care about.

Did it matter when Clinton lied? Should we give up on expecting our candidates to be truthful?

7 comments:

unkle e said...

We can hope our politicians won't lie, we can expect that they should not lie, but we can't expect that they won't. In fact, considering the pressures on them and their ambitions, we can probably expect that they will. As long as we allow them to see politics as a competition between them rather than a service to us, I think things won't change.

Anonymous said...

What is interesting here is that McCain/Palin are continuing to lie despite the thorough documention of what really happened.

Usually a candiate will admit to having "misspoken" and move on. But Palin is still using this lie in her speeches to illustrate how committed she is to reducing govt. spending.

Anonymous said...

Obama gets brought up because you never use him for illustrations, Victor. So it's clear your just a talking head. Also, Obama gets brought up because if you are trying to use these posts as REASONS to not vote for Mccain-Palin, then it must be a REASON to not vote for Obama-Biden. Is the Obama campaign sending you money?

As far as "lying," of course Palin DID voice opposition to the bridge. Now, that happened to be AFTER she had supported it, and AFTER intrest was lost, but the fact is that she DID say "no" to the bridge. So, you must be objecting that she left out other details. And of course THAT is something EVERY SINGLE politician does. So to use it as a REASON to chastise Palin is to chastise ALL politicains.

So, in THE CONTEXT that Palin MEANS her comment, it IS NOT lying. It is, in fact, TRUE that "she said thanks but no thanks to the bridge to nowhere," she just said it AFTER she originally supported it.

Now, I happen to believe that leaving off relevant information or misleading is lying, but as I said above, EVERY FRIGGIN POLITICIAN IN THE WORLD DOES THAT. It's called "spin." It's the name of the game. It aint going nowhere.

You would avoid such obvious blunders, Victor, if you weren't such a Obama "Yes man."

Anonymous said...

"So, in THE CONTEXT that Palin MEANS her comment, it IS NOT lying. It is, in fact, TRUE that "she said thanks but no thanks to the bridge to nowhere," she just said it AFTER she originally supported it."



In the context of what actually happened it is a lie.:

"In November of 2005, after the backlash against the bridge -- and the $230 million in federal money that was originally intended to go to its construction -- Congress redirected the money, giving the Alaskan government the choice of how to spend it. The next year, as Palin campaigned for governor, she still supported the bridge. When she then "killed" the bridge in September of 2007, the writing was on the wall, as she now finally admits. As PolitiFact notes, "much of the federal funding for the bridge had already been diverted to other transportation projects," leaving the Alaskan government $329 million short of the estimated cost of construction. "



She did not oppose the bridge because she thought it was a bad idea or because she was trying to reduce govt. spending. The money orginally earmarked for the bridge did get spent on other projects.
The way she tells it, one would think she had led the movement in opposition to the bridge and that she actually reduced govt. spending. But that ain't true. In other words, she is lying.




"Now, I happen to believe that leaving off relevant information or misleading is lying, but as I said above, EVERY FRIGGIN POLITICIAN IN THE WORLD DOES THAT. It's called "spin." It's the name of the game. It aint going nowhere."


If enough people adhere to that cynical outlook, it certainly won't go anywhere.

philip m said...

I'm not exactly sure why everyone thinks that Palin is lying when she makes the above statement. Early support for the bridge's construction does not make it lying to emphasize her eventual rejection of it. If her statement had read something like, "From day 1 I opposed the building of this bridge, and this opposition to wasteful government spending was heard," then you would clearly be able to point out the inconsistency between the reality and her words.

As it is, the reality is that although she was an early advocate of the bridge's construction, she shut down the project and the money was not spent on what pretty clearly would have been a unjustified use of an enormous sum of money. Her emphasis on the latter half of the previous sentence does not make her a liar. She shut down the project. She said she shut down the project. I don't care if she started the facebook group in favor of its construction before that, her statement is true.

Now you might say that it's misleading, which rather than lying means something more like, her statement causes false thoughts or impressions within the hearer's minds. But as long as through her emphasis of her cancellation of the bridge project she is intending to make people believe in the future she will oppose wasteful government spending, and she is intending on that end as much as it is within her power to do so, then she is not being misleading either.

You'd be better off criticizing her embarassingly uninformed understanding of foreign policy. Otherwise I must say .. "If you keep scraping at the bottom of the barrel for objections, I'm fear you'll get get splinters under your fingernails."

Victor Reppert said...

The problem is that there was no longer a congressional mandate from Congress for the bridge once she killed the project. And the money got spent, so she didn't save the taxpayers any money.

In reality, killing the project is hardly an item of any significance on her resume.

Consider my favorite, (which I almost included in the post) the famous "I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Monica Lewinsky" by Bill Clinton. Given the legal definition Clinton was references, the statement was true, but as a response to what the people of this country were concerned about, it was totally misleading.

Yes, I do support Barack Obama. But I am not an Obama yes man, otherwise I would not have posted a set of counter-replies to the allegations against Palin. I also would have accepted all the Daily Kos smushing together of various "dominionist" groups in an attempt to paint Palin as a Christian reconstructionist. I don't know how far in that direction she goes.

If I were a Republican, and if I were one who wants to make reversing Roe priority 1, I would still have serious problems with the Palin selection. I think problems with her truthfulness, her lack of understanding of the major issues, her possible ties to extremist groups, the various scandals that are coming out of Alaska every day, would be sources of concern for me even if I supported the Republican party. I would still vote for the ticket, but with muted enthusiasm.

Victor Reppert said...

It's a little sad when the first question anyone asks in a political discussion is "Whose side are you on?"