Friedman on Truth

The way you get democracy to function is by informing the public. — Robert Kennedy

   

By now millions of people will have read Thomas L. Friedman’s column from the New York Times headlined “Only truth can save our democracy.” (That was the headline also in this morning’s Berkshire Eagle, the Chattanooga Times Free Press, and the Salt Lake Tribune, where it may be read online HERE, and elsewhere. A blogger used “The Trump presidency and the normalization of lying.”

“On Saturday morning,” Friedman begins, “I was sitting in the kitchen with my wife, Ann, who was stirring her Cream of Wheat, when out of nowhere she surprised me with a question: ‘Is not lying one of the Ten Commandments?’”

The trouble is, the column could seem to imply that lying in government and politics began with Republicans and Donald Trump’s first campaign for the presidency, which included signing on to the pre-existing “birther” baloney that Barack Obama was born outside the United States.

Anyway, lying includes lies of omission. Everyone at the Times including their many Pulitzer and Nobel prize winners knows that the government/news media narratives about the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, are false. As are a host of other government/new media narratives defended by the Times when it has looked the other way.

My hunch is Friedman wrote the column not just for the multitudes, but for higher-ups at the Times and at news organs elsewhere who keep reporters away from forbidden topics. 

The column ends, “We need to restore the stigma to lying and liars before it is too late. We need to hunt for truth, fight for truth and mercilessly discredit the forces of disinformation. It is the freedom battle of our generation.”

— Mark Channing Miller

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