Former PSC Official – ‘Why do Politicians Lie? Because They Can’
Former Montana legislator and Public Service Commissioner Roger Koopman submitted an editorial to KGVO News entitled ‘Why do Politicians Lie?’ and then proceeded to answer his own question.
“We've all heard the clip, ‘How do you know when a politician is lying? Answer? His lips are moving’. But there's another question that's quite obvious that also begs an obvious answer. ‘Why do politicians lie? Answer? Because they can’.”
Koopman referenced the mainstream media as co-conspirators in the act.
“The furrowed brows on the left from CNN, MSNBC and the major networks were almost gleeful when they could trip up Trump in a self serving fib,” he said. “Carlson, Hannity and other featured fellows on Fox News, hold forth with an unending stream of reported fabrications and falsehoods readily provided by a desperate President and his administration of race baiters and pointy headed socialists.”
Koopman said elected officials take advantage of the public’s fatigue with unending political drama.
“Our officeholders protect themselves in a blanket of citizens’ cynicism that they themselves have woven,” he said. “The blanket remains intact because our standards are so very low. We’d better think about this very carefully. Just how accepting of practiced self aggrandizing lying have we become? And what does it mean to the very soul of our country? Does truth and truthful communication really matter in this day and age?”
Koopman quoted Canadian psychologist Jordan Peterson on the subject of truth and lies.
“Our culture is predicated on the idea that truth in speech is of divine significance,” he said. “It's the fundamental presupposition of our culture. If you believe that, then you need to act it out and you take the consequences. You're going to take the consequences one way or another, you know, so do you want to have the truth on your side, or do you want to hide behind falsehoods?”
Koopman ended his editorial by answering his own question.
“Why do politicians lie? Partly because we ourselves are drawn to lies,” he said. “We love to have our ears tickled and we love to believe gossip. Secondly, because in the political world lying works. How does the saying go? A lie travels halfway around the world before Truth has put its pants on. This is true even when we know intuitively that we've just been lied to. Yet tolerating habitual lying by your favorite politician is identical to participating in it. Complain not when your moral blindness leads you to getting the very government you deserve.”
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