Nelson Mandela Becomes First Politician To Be Missed... The Onion
- Several months ago, I Tweeted something like: Imagine how many lies the political class got away with before social media existed? Prior to the advent of social media, specifically Facebook and Twitter, the media's lies and deceptions were rarely reported---because, quite frankly, they were (are) responsible for many of those deliberate and intentionally false statements and stories. In fact, in many case, there were both enablers and complicit. Who can forget the bogus Dan Rather reporting on Bush's Air National Guard service? I contend Rather's story would not have been given the "legs" it received by the media at the time if he broke that story in today's social media environment.
- Perhaps at no time in the recent history of social media has this been more evident than it is now with the Obama administration and the current political class. To a degree, there is some irony in social media's evolution paralleling Pres. Obama's rise to the presidency. While one can make an argument that this technology played a large role in Obama winning the presidency, it's also playing a significant role in exposing the lies and deceptions of this administration. We're currently seeing this played out with Obamacare and the many associated lies and deceptions exposed by social media. We've witnessed the same with the scandals related to Fast and Furious, Benghazi, the IRS and countless others.
- The problem facing the current political class in their attempts to deceive us is that the electorate is much better educated about the facts. It's much better educated because social media helps create more awareness of what the truth is or where to find it. Don't misunderstand me, social media can be a mixed bag of truths, falsehoods and garbage. It also requires close scrutiny. But the fact is this new technology enables citizens to search a myriad of alternative news sources. And while I still believe face-to-face contacts with politicians at such venues as town hall meetings, board meetings, etc. have their value, many of us just don't have the time to take advantage of those more personal opportunities. Hence, social media helps to effectively fill that void.
- So while social media has its own set of problems when it comes to the truth, it's now undeniable it's also been an invaluable tool for helping ordinary citizens in unveiling the lies and deceptions of both the political class and the main stream media.