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HonestAbe

Does factual accuracy matter ?

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Regardless of your political leanings, I'd assume we could agree, the two most talked about, most tweeted about, most searched about, and most attention getting politicians in America today are President Donald Trump, and AOC.

Both have incredibly poor habits when it comes to using facts in positioning their arguments.  In fact both might be the two biggest abusers of absurd information.

So my question is a simple one to ask....does factual accuracy matter in politics?  Does it matter to you ?  Is it more beneficial for a politician to create truth, that speak it ?  Thoughts....

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7 minutes ago, HonestAbe said:

Regardless of your political leanings, I'd assume we could agree, the two most talked about, most tweeted about, most searched about, and most attention getting politicians in America today are President Donald Trump, and AOC.

Both have incredibly poor habits when it comes to using facts in positioning their arguments.  In fact both might be the two biggest abusers of absurd information.

So my question is a simple one to ask....does factual accuracy matter in politics?  Does it matter to you ?  Is it more beneficial for a politician to create truth, that speak it ?  Thoughts....

It absolutely matters. I think there should be some sort of punishment for willfully lying, misleading, Tweeting as a sitting politician. I think the truth should be stated even if it doesn't help the party or one's own reelection. There should be a non-partisan, independent fact checking organization that is somehow selected in a way that is fair to all parties. Politicians can submit facts they read or wish to state and they can quickly be double-checked for accuracy. Additionally, this committee can submit a monthly or annual report on Presidents, VPs, cabinet, US Reps, Senators, SC judges, and their organizations. If any candidate exceeds a certain % of misleading statements they are publically censured by Congress (a vote) and potentially receive other punishments depending on how nefarious we decide this fault should be. I think misleading in a poker game is okay, but misleading the American people is more similar to lying under oath. It should be criminalized if it exceeds a certain percentage. That said, if Trump, Ocasio-Cortez, Pelosi, McConnell, Clinton, Sanders, Pence, Cruz, Stein, Kasich, Rubio, Obama--whoever--exceeds this amount, should probably be forced to resign and/or face a brief time in jail. 

Sadly, this is the kind of reform we need if we ever want honest politicians. Within a few election cycles, we will probably start seeing better representatives from both major parties. 

I should add that sometimes a politician can't give information away for security reasons and so they may have to lie. Part of this amendment would allow for certain national security protections. They can say, "I am not at liberty to say" or "I invoke the national security clause" or "no comment" or "We're still trying to figure everything out" etc. 

I'm a radical reformist when it comes to ethics and anti-corruption. 

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1 hour ago, HonestAbe said:

Regardless of your political leanings, I'd assume we could agree, the two most talked about, most tweeted about, most searched about, and most attention getting politicians in America today are President Donald Trump, and AOC.

Both have incredibly poor habits when it comes to using facts in positioning their arguments.  In fact both might be the two biggest abusers of absurd information.

So my question is a simple one to ask....does factual accuracy matter in politics?  Does it matter to you ?  Is it more beneficial for a politician to create truth, that speak it ?  Thoughts....

Historical revisionism, deliberate false information, recycling old news stories as though they were current, teaching long debunked myths, legends, and lies in schools, confusing, contradictory, and bizarre rhetoric, and misinformation for it's own sake were among the major trademarks and pillars of power of "Big Brother" and his "Inner Party" in fictitious nation of "Oceania" in George Orwell's novel "1984." We can see this sentiment rising, even, in the U.S., and a number of other countries as well, and SHOULD to people - far moreso than it seems to be. The fact that so many people are comfortable with this way of doing things - even willing to defend it - is an unfortunate state-of-affairs and a sign of social degeneration, as well as a sign of degeneration of social values and ethics that many so-called "Christian" Conservatives never point out as such.

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Politicians have engaged in misinformation since long before the US ever existed.  They'll all lie, often quite blatantly, to get your support.

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1 minute ago, pilight said:

Politicians have engaged in misinformation since long before the US ever existed.  They'll all lie, often quite blatantly, to get your support.

I don't think the historical trend is what this is about. It's more about whether or not it should matter, which also implies, should something be done about it. I think just accepting it because of historical precedence is weak. 

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@vcczar, really, jail time? I can understand fines and stuff but don't you think sending someone to jail for simply not telling the truth is a blatant violation of the first amendment?

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I find Trump's lies to be even more problematic than most politicians because he'll lie about EVERYTHING.  I expect politicians to lie about certain topics, mostly to cover their own asses.  But Trump's lies run the gamut, everything always has to be the biggest and the best ever for him.  He is incapable of acknowledging that anything has ever gone wrong, accepting responsibility, or even accepting "second best". His inauguration has to have had the highest turnout ever, even though it obviously wasn't.  His debates and addresses have to be the most watched ever, even when the ratings prove differently.  He lies about things that don't even matter, and are easily disproven, and he does it all of the fucking time.

Facts matter, at least to establish a base line of honesty.  I work in public relations, and I frequently tell people to tell the truth as frequently as humanly possible -- so that when you DO eventually have to lie one day, you've built a long history of transparency and maybe you'll get away with it.  At worst, you can claim you mispoke and it was an honest mistake, and people will take you at your word.

I can't speak about AOC as I haven't bothered to pay that much attention to her yet.  I enjoyed the dancing video and saw her influence on some early positions taken by Presidential candidates, but I expect her 15 minutes is about up.

But taking away personalities and just answering "does the truth matter".

Yes, but you select the truth that helps you win your political argument.

There are literally no facts you could tell me that would persuade me to suddenly be against gay marriage, or in favor of taking children away from their parents and locking them in cages with no ability to reunite them with their family ever.  You could absolutely, 100% PROVE whatever facts you have on your side, and I still would not agree with you.  Because I would counter with my own facts on the same topics.  Take abortion, for example.  There is compelling evidence for both sides of that debate, that I believe to be 100% true.  In the end, abortion doesn't come down to facts -- it comes down to values (for both sides).

But when you make your case with obvious lies, I think that DOES matter.  

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41 minutes ago, ThePotatoWalrus said:

@vcczar, really, jail time? I can understand fines and stuff but don't you think sending someone to jail for simply not telling the truth is a blatant violation of the first amendment?

No. Not if the amendment is constructed to make a willfully lying politician speak under the oath of their office. As stated in my response. There is some leeway but there is a point when the lying is out of control and should be curtailed. During the campaign fact checkers found Trump to have an obscene number of “pants on fire” level mistruths. Ben Carson was second. I’d say even Clinton was too high. I forgot who had the lowest  I think it was Kasich, who was less likely to make stuff up or get it wrong. 

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55 minutes ago, ThePotatoWalrus said:

@vcczar, really, jail time? I can understand fines and stuff but don't you think sending someone to jail for simply not telling the truth is a blatant violation of the first amendment?

I would see it as being viewed as deliberately lying on a resume or application for (in regards to the election), or in reports for, or during of (while serving) for very high level and sensitive jobs (and are elected lawmakers or executive officials really anything but), for which you can, indeed, be jailed for.

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44 minutes ago, vcczar said:

No. Not if the amendment is constructed to make a willfully lying politician speak under the oath of their office. As stated in my response. There is some leeway but there is a point when the lying is out of control and should be curtailed. During the campaign fact checkers found Trump to have an obscene number of “pants on fire” level mistruths. Ben Carson was second. I’d say even Clinton was too high. I forgot who had the lowest  I think it was Kasich, who was less likely to make stuff up or get it wrong. 

During the campaign Trump wasn't in office, so your theoretical amendment wouldn't have applied to him.

Lawyers will get rich on a law that has some leeway.

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9 minutes ago, pilight said:

During the campaign Trump wasn't in office, so your theoretical amendment wouldn't have applied to him.

Lawyers will get rich on a law that has some leeway.

Read my post on the issue. It's a bit of a different take than @vcczar's as to why incarceration should be justified.

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1 hour ago, Patine said:

@pilight No retort to my point here?

Lying on a resume or application is not illegal, and not quite the same thing.  It's more like lying during a job interview, which is also not illegal.

We already have a mechanism for removing people from office if the offense is serious enough.

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1 minute ago, pilight said:

Lying on a resume or application is not illegal, and not quite the same thing.  It's more like lying during a job interview, which is also not illegal.

We already have a mechanism for removing people from office if the offense is serious enough.

It can be, as I said, for certain high-level, important, and, sensitive government jobs with a lot of high responsibility - and that is the kind of job that ALL elected lawmakers and executive chiefs effectively have...

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1 minute ago, ThePotatoWalrus said:

 

I think Anthony bans outside soliciting here, @ThePotatoWalrus. I don't know why you're posting what appears to be an advertisement for dog food (but I NEVER watch annoying videos linked in forums, because they're always stupid and inane, and I choose not to subject myself to that, so I'm not going to watch this one).

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38 minutes ago, Patine said:

I think Anthony bans outside soliciting here, @ThePotatoWalrus. I don't know why you're posting what appears to be an advertisement for dog food (but I NEVER watch annoying videos linked in forums, because they're always stupid and inane, and I choose not to subject myself to that, so I'm not going to watch this one).

Lol it's not an ad. It's a video to lighten the mood.

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2 minutes ago, ThePotatoWalrus said:

Lol it's not an ad. It's a video to lighten the mood.

@Patine it’s to underscore his contempt for factual accuracy. 

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3 minutes ago, ThePotatoWalrus said:

Lol it's not an ad. It's a video to lighten the mood.

Well, then, it obviously is very safe to ignore. I'm going to my scenario design and leaving the mire of debate I brought up in my last post today therein.

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