Life In The Land Of LiesWhile reading the news last week you may have come to the conclusion as I did that everyone in this country is lying. A more important revelation is that most of these lies are coming from people in positions of leadership and power. My mother has often told me that “there is nothing new under the sun” but I am getting a sick feeling that we are progressing far beyond a few lying politicians. The extent to which everything we are being told is nearly devoid of the truth is to me frightening and becoming downright dangerous.
Am I wrong to be so scared? Here is a review of some highlights from just last week.
The week started with Brian Williams taking flak for not taking flak when some Iraq veterans exposed his dramatic 2003 war story as a lie. Williams had claimed for years that the military helicopter he occupied was forced to land while taking RPG fire. This was not true, and once it was reported the flood gates containing a myriad of William’s factual inaccuracies was opened. By weeks end it was clear that the NBC News anchor was more than someone who creatively embellished a story. He appeared to have a seemingly pathological habit of putting himself into the news events on which he reported. These included stories from hurricane Katrina, the Brandenburg Gate, the Pope, Seal Team Six and one or more puppies that he rescued from a burning building.
What is of greater concern here is the credibility of NBC. The last shoe to drop before they suspended Williams was a report that the network had known of his credibility issues for years and ignored them. This is not the first time that the temerity of NBC news has been questioned. In 1993 they were caught placing incendiary devices in Chevrolet trucks to prove they had an exploding problem, and in 2012 they were caught inserting themselves into the Trayvon Martin case by selectively editing George Zimmerman's taped 911 call. They also employ Al Sharpton.
“The fiddling with temperature data is the biggest science scandal ever” was the title of a story The UK Daily Telegraph published the same week. The story documents the extent to which official temperature records were systematically “adjusted” to show the earth as having warmed much more than the actual data justified. This story comes just a week after the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration claimed 2014 was the warmest year on record, a widely disputed allegation that made headlines worldwide almost instantly. Apparently the taxpayer-funded agency employed fudge factors and dubious temperature estimates rather than objective global data. The “undisputed scientific fact” of global-warming that has been beaten into our heads for the past 30 years by educators, politicians, entertainers, government agencies, movies, commercials, green businesses, the UN and whatever it is Al Gore has become is quite possibly neither science or fact and could be, dare I say it, a great big fat lie.
The credibility of the administration’s Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) also made the news when the CEO of Gallup, Jim Clifton, wrote an opinion piece on the organization’s web site stating that the number of full time jobs in this country as a percent of the adult population “is the worst it’s been in 30 years” and called the government’s 5.6 percent unemployment figure “The Big Lie” in the article’s headline. These unemployment numbers are published by the BLS every month and have been touted since the Great Depression as an important economic indicator. Of late they are being heralded by both the media and the administration as proof that the US economy is doing just dandy even though most of us living in it have very good personal reasons to believe that it is not. Mr. Clifton is not the first to suggest that these numbers may somehow have become skewed to support current economic policy and may be in the words of George W. Bush “misunderestimated”.
Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Tom Wheeler has acknowledged that the commission decided to avoid congressional input for its new “Net Neutrality” program while adopting Franklin Roosevelt’s 1934 Communications Act to regulate the Internet. To hide this decision from those who care about free speech, markets, and commerce, Wheeler “embargoed” the release of any specifics. The President has touted the plan as a way to make the internet “an even playing field”. Last Thursday Ajit Pai, a Republican FCC commissioner inferred that the 332-page document is really a scheme by the federal government to extract billions in new taxes and enforce content regulation contingent with the progressive left’s idea of fairness. The FCC’s actions include lies, cover ups, and a blatant act of disregard for the Constitution, but if tyranny exists on an even playing field then I guess its ok.
Midweek came revelations from a book written by former presidential adviser David Axelrod claiming that President Obama lied about his support for gay marriage before his election in 2008. Axelrod defended the President’s “evolution” on gay marriage as a matter of political expediency thus proving that the “most transparent administration ever” was off on the wrong foot before Mr. Obama ever took office. Media indignation on this reported lie was at best tepid. One can only assume this is due to the current and widely publicized narrative that Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) rights are without doubt among the most important topics of our time. So it’s ok to lie a little.
The President confronted another of our country’s crucial issues during last week’s Grammy Awards presentation when he inserted himself into the festivities with a PSA to bring awareness to rape and domestic violence against women. This is especially poignant considering Kayla Mueller’s recent death at the hands of ISIS. This is beyond a lie. It is an absolute insult to the American people to tell us that we should focus on the ‘abuses’ against women committed by Our culture, Our laws, Our own people while true evil is abusing, enslaving, raping, prostituting, torturing, and killing women all over the rest of the world. Our President has no trouble discussing changing "our culture for the better by ending violence against women and girls" or for that matter the “terrible deeds” performed during the Crusades but he seems unable to string together the words "Islamic Terrorist".
The Grammy’s also brought us more evidence of what a colossal ass-hat Kanye West is as he rushed the stage to once again insult another artist. You may remember Kanye from the fundraiser for the victims of Hurricane Katrina when he ditched his lines to proclaim that "George Bush doesn't care about black people". Mr. West did not mention New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin who let hundreds of busses go under water and hundreds of thousands of people go un-evacuated. The former mayor is now doing a 10 year stint in federal prison for corruption charges but hey, he meant well, everyone knows that Bush was the real problem. I bring this story up because George Bush has been gone for 7 years and yet the racism in this country apparently continues. With the first black president and first black attorney general it is interesting to see that it’s not George Bush but the nation’s police departments who now “don’t care about black people”. Instead of putting an end to any perceived race problems we had under the Bush administration, the Obama administration has continued to instigate, foster, and support a narrative of racism in this country, particularly with law enforcement. It is at best a blatant misrepresentation of the truth. It is extremely dangerous and it’s starting to get people killed.
Hillary Clinton has been strangely unobserved of late which is making some curious considering all of the 2016 presidential posturing that’s going on. This prompted RNC chairman Reince Priebus late last week to send a letter to the DNC asking their chairman Debbie Wasserman Schultz if the Democratic Party has “suspended” Hillary Clinton in the same way NBC News suspended Brian Williams. You see there is a striking similarity between William’s Iraq helicopter lie and a whopper that Mrs. Clinton told in 2008 about having to do a corkscrew landing while taking sniper fire on a trip to Bosnia as First Lady. She further embellished the story explaining that once on the ground they were told to run for it. None of this was true and she later recanted saying that she “misspoke” due to “sleep deprivation”.
Human nature tells us that someone who is exaggerating on such a large scale for self-aggrandizement is quite capable of doing so for other reasons, and when as Secretary Of State Hillary Clinton made a conscious decision to repeatedly blame the sacking of our Benghazi consulate on a little known internet video called “Innocence of Muslims” she was promoting a serious and dangerous lie. And it is a lie that she may have taken part in fabricating. But, as she said to Congress, “at this point what difference does it make?” Is she right? If we continue to accept the lies fed to us every day by the people that we elected (or those appointed by the people we elected) to run this country then are we not just getting what we deserve?
Last week ended with a story about the Federal Election Commission (FEC) and their plans to regulate the internet. It seems they cannot let the Federal Communication Commission have all of the fun. The FEC is calling for burdensome new rules on Internet-based campaigning that would in effect allow them to control content on ‘political based’ web sites from The Drudge Report to Jib Jab. In the words of FEC Chair Ann M. Ravel. “A reexamination of the commission’s approach to the internet and other emerging technologies is long overdue.”
Ann Ravel’s statement may not be a lie, but the foreboding conclusions one can derive from it create a chilling portent of a grave new direction for this country, one where the very definition of the truth is removed from the citizenry and placed firmly in the hands of the federal government. Anyone else thinking of Orwell’s Big Brother? Be afraid, be very, very afraid…..