Monday, August 20, 2012

Lies, damned lies, and presidential campaigns

In July, a blog called Human Events ran the following headline:


Here’s the article that followed the headline.

For those who never click on links, Debbie Wasserman Schultz represents Florida's 20th Congressional District (Fort Lauderdale and environs) in Washington and she is also the Chair[person] of the Democratic National Committee. A few days later, Ms. Schults went on MSNBC and repeated the charge on nationwide television.

To be fair, she was being asked to comment about a statement made in a conference call the previous week by Stephanie Cutter, deputy campaign manager for President Barack Obama’s 2012 reelection campaign.. Ms. Cutter had said, “Either Mitt Romney, through his own words and his own signature, was misrepresenting his position at Bain to the SEC, which is a felony, [or he wasn't].” Wasserman Schultz basically attempted to validate what Cutter had said, repeating the accusation for a national television audience.

These two women are not a couple of nobodies out in the hinterland; they are high priestesses in the campaign to get President Obama re-elected.

Fast forward to the present (today, August 20, 2012) and watch this exchange between reporter Nancy Cordes of CBS and President Obama at a news conference.

Again, for the link-challenged, here is a transcript:

Nancy Cordes, CBS: As you know, your opponent recently accused you of waging a campaign filled with anger and hate. You told Entertainment Tonight that anyone who attends your rallies can see that they are not angry or hate-filled affairs. But in recent weeks, your campaign has suggested repeatedly -- without proof -- that Mr. Romney might be hiding something in his tax returns. They have suggested that Mr. Romney might be a felon for the way that he handed over power of Bain Capital. And your campaign and the White House have declined to condemn an ad by one of your top supporters that links Mr. Romney to a woman’s death from cancer. Are you comfortable with the tone being set with your campaign? Have you asked them to change their tone when it comes to defining Mr. Romney?

President Obama: Well, first of all, I am not sure that all of those characterizations that you laid out there were accurate. For example, nobody accused Mr. Romney of being a felon. And, I think that what is absolutely true is if you watch me on the campaign trail, here’s what I’m talking about. I’m talking about how to put Americans back to work.

(End of transcript)

As the Psalmist said, Selah (Hebrew: pause and consider).

The point being, I suppose, that when you tell (or imply) a lie, sometimes you have to tell another lie to cover up the first lie.

To my mind, this is akin to saying, on the one hand, “Mother Teresa could be a common whore” or, on the other, “Princess Diana never referred to Camilla Parker-Bowles as The Rottweiler.” [Editor’s note. As far as I know, no one has ever said such things. --RWP]

It also demonstrates that as long as enough people (a) aren’t really paying attention and (b) believe anything they hear, anything is possible.

Stay tuned.


  1. i am not paying attention and i believe in aliens

  2. once again this is not revelant to what you are talking about

  3. This is all very intense. You need to lighten up and take Mrs Brague out for a few beers at "The Olde Blind Dog" - Canton's only Irish pub. When you're blotto all this stuff about President Obama and the other guys will seem irrelevant.

  4. Putz, I am not advocating not paying attention. In fact, I was saying just the opposite.

    Y.P.,, you may have put your finger on what is wrong in this country: too many people are blotto. But Superman, as I recall, was for truth,, justice, and the American way [emphasis mine]. Not that I'm comparing myself to Superman. I'm more the Clark Kent type.