In a media landscape where athletes routinely lie about their doping habits and where whole reality-television empires are built on the catty untruths traded back and forth between characters, should dishonest politicians and false campaign ads really surprise us?
Public figures may not be under penalty of perjury for every statement they make, be it to a reporter or in a rare unguarded moment. But it becomes increasingly harder to hold our leaders to a higher standard when voters are, more and more often, in need of groups such as Politifact and the Sunlight Foundation to sort truth from spin-doctoring. And a casual consumer of politics may not jump on Politifact to see if there’s a “pants of fire” rating for an ad that runs while they’re watching “The Bachelorette.” So what happens for them? Does the casual consumer of political ads believe what they hear or do they expect a degree of dishonesty, a spinning of the truth? During campaign season, when the stakes are the highest, either could be possible.
Tonight political strategist Ace Smith will join Jennifer Granholm in “The War Room” to look at lies politicians often tell and, specifically, lies they’re telling during the 2012 presidential election campaign.
We’ll also have Salon.com editor Joan Walsh on the show to talk about her new book, “What’s the Matter With White People: Why We Long for a Golden Age That Never Was.” We’ll also talk with Daniel Weiss about the energy plan that Mitt Romney has proposed and with Mayor Karl Dean about the successes and setbacks he’s seen while leading Nashville.