CANDIDATE SO-AND-SO WANTS TO EAT YOUR CHILDREN
CANDIDATE SUCH-N-SUCH VOTED TO BAN ALL HOLIDAYS
Though they spent a lot of money trying to convince you they are the epitome of truth, justice, and the American way, the candidates for office this year also spent a lot of money to doing just the opposite.
The campaigns, and the outside interest groups supporting candidates spent a fortune on broadcast advertising this year. If you watch any T.V. you've probably seen hours of political advertising over the last several months. Most of what you and I heard was garbage. The vast majority of ads stretched the truth. Most of them had, at best, a shred of truth. Nearly half of them... were just plain made up.
I hope you enjoyed the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's use of PolitiFact this election season. They graded the "truthiness" (term borrowed from Stephen Colbert) of 61 ads run in Wisconsin this year. Here's my analysis of their analysis:
MOSTLY TRUE: 4
HALF TRUE: 13
BARELY TRUE: 16
PANTS ON FIRE: 12
Makes you proud of our democracy, doesn't it?
Three? Three ads were an unqualified true? Just three? That's 5 percent, and needless to say, the smallest percentage of any category.
In fact, only 12 percent of all the ads rated were better than half true, meaning 88 percent of the ads were half true at best. Barely true or worse describes 67 percent of the ads, and 41 percent were flat out lies, receiving "False" or "Pants on Fire" designations.
The lying appeared to infect all the major races, all parties, and all candidates considered. This was not a red or blue issue.
So, when you proudly head out to exercise your rights in this democracy today... when you fly your flag... when you check in at the polls... when you bring your children with you to vote today... when you pick up an elderly relative or neighbor and help them cast their ballot... when you feel that little tingle as you connect the arrows, and feed your ballot into the machine... when you proudly don your "I Voted" sticker... when you do these things... remember... in many cases you've just voted for your favorite liar.