Saturday, September 1, 2012

The lies of Mitt Romney and post truth politics

Watching the speeches at the US Republican convention is a reminder that politics has entered a "post truth age".

Politics is now dominated by an onslaught of brazen and deliberate falsehoods and lies. 

And the media and the political and corporate elite simply accept or fail to challenge the lies.

For the Republicans, particularly Mitt Romney, mendacity and lies are a stock and trade. He simply repeats the same falsehoods over and over.

Steve Benen has been chronicling and exposing Romney's lies. Benen writes that Romney has told 533 lies in 30 weeks, more than any other national candidate. Romney, he argues, is the first Presidential candidate to build an entire campaign around deliberate deceptions.

Benen' columns can be read here.

Over on the Grist website blogger Dave Roberts uses the concept of  post truth politics to dissect the Romney campaign:
Similarly, it seems that the lip service given to truth in politics is but a norm itself, one with increasingly tenuous hold. Political campaigns have always lied and stretched the truth, but when caught in a lie, would typically defend themselves (claim it was actually true), retract, or at the very least stop repeating the lie. Either way, the presumption was that truth-telling had some moral force; one ought to tell the truth, even if that commandment was often honored in the breach.
What’s creepy about the Romney crew is that they don’t do any of those things. They don’t deny, they don’t stop, they just don’t care at all. What they’ve realized is that, given today’s hyper-polarization and fragmented media, there’s no practical risk to lying. It doesn’t hurt them, in terms of getting votes, so why shouldn’t they do it?

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