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Lying

August 17, 2009

Lying is, I suppose, as old as politics. Still, something has clearly gone awry when lying becomes the predominant strategy of a major political party. There is a case to be made for limited government, but that’s not what were getting. Instead, prominent voices on the right — from Palin to Limbaugh to Beck– have tried to block health care reform by warning the public of death panels and birth certificates, rationing and Nazism.

What’s even worse than lying is lying about lying, and lying about other people lying, which is what we got from FreedomWorks chairman Dick Armey on Meet the Press this morning. First, Armey denied any responsibility for the Obama-Hitler comparisons and threats of violence made at recent town hall meetings, despite playing a key role in organizing the protests and belonging to a coalition whose website promoted violence at a Tampa town hall meeting. Second, Armey erroneously claimed that Moveon.org ran an ad likening Bush to Hitler, when in fact the website hosted a contest for 30 second televison ads against Bush, and received two such ads (out of 1,500).

There is a case to be made for limited government. But is there anyone left to make it? Perhaps the mantle must be passed on to the libertarians…

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. November 18, 2009 12:02 pm

    According to http://deligentia.wordpress.com/2009/11/18/enabling-lies-the-palin-factor/, Palin’s lie about not quitting her job also involves misappropriating hunting language that really doesn’t apply. I agree. I wonder how many people will call her on it?

    • innocentsmithjournal permalink*
      November 18, 2009 12:25 pm

      Rather than calling Palin on her lies, I’m starting to wish that the media would just ignore her. Half of the problem right now is that right-wing pundits like Palin and Beck and Limbaugh are spreading falsehoods like this. But the other — even more troubling — half is that the media continues to hand them its megaphone.

      On the other hand, the Tea Party-wing of the conservative movement is helping undermine the credibility of the Republican party. Which is arguably not a bad thing.

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