Truth and Non-Consequences in Political Campaigns

As a skeptic and empiricist I have an admitted weakness for forensic analyses of political posturing, but it’s still remarkable the falsehoods that candidates so blithely spew in an age when they are so easily debunked:

Mitt Romney says he "saw" his father "march" with Martin Luther King Jr. Rudolph W. Giuliani claims that he is one of the "five best-known Americans in the world." According to John McCain, the Constitution established the United States as a "Christian nation." Ron Paul believes that a "NAFTA superhighway" is being planned to link Mexico with Canada and undermine U.S. sovereignty.

On the other side of the political divide, Sen. Barack Obama says there are more young black males in prison than in college. Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton claims she has a "definitive timetable" for withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq. John Edwards insists that NAFTA — the North American Free Trade Agreement — has cost Americans "millions of jobs." Sen. Joseph R. Biden Jr. boasts about his experience negotiating an arms-control treaty with Leonid Brezhnev.

All those claims, made over the past four months as part of the presidential campaign, are demonstrably false.

Relatedly, the Washington Post’s Factchecker blog does yeoman work boring into these claims, and others.

[via WashPost]


  1. So, should we presume that when the marathon for the Lincoln’s bedroom is over. These *folks* – under the aegis of a common nation, will solve all these wrong doings?
    Its an impressive cast list.. even a Hollywood or Bollywood producer cant fathom..
    Now, when is the V-day? – are we gonna hand that Mission Accomplished banner – big and high??