This word has to be the most overused and manipulative one in the political world. “The facts are people in my area are saying I should vote for the bill, not against it.” Technically Joe Spinaway isn’t lying. He’s guilty of some minor omissions like the people he’s referring to are his seven-year-old twin daughters. Why can’t the poor guy be honest for once and tell us he’s voting for it because he agrees with it? That wouldn’t offend me. Why bring fictional characters into the picture? (And to think I sometimes think I’m the only adult with imaginary friends.) These guys and gals don’t even hang their heads when they share those made-up friend’s thoughts. I’m downright embarrassed to admit my penchant for my fake buddies. It’s an admission of loneliness and being an odd duck. Mine have names. For some odd reason, the politician’s phoney friends remain nameless – shadows of themselves, forever stuck with obscure generalities words like ‘voter’ and ‘constituent’.
“Just yesterday I was talking to some constituents on the street.”
My near immediate reaction, however cynical it may sound, is, “Weren’t you on some airplane, a golf-course, a committee discussing the conclusions of another committee, or dining out with cronies?”
My thinking light plays second fiddle to my hearing light. The first comes on two seconds after the latter. The switch mechanism is often this word ‘facts’, most especially when coming from the larynxes of the Elected Ones. In fairness, the fantasy pals alluded to earlier don’t get to vote, thank goodness. Landslide victories would be the norm. Voter’s lists would be longer than phone books.
“Would the honourable minister look at the facts before making such blatant misleading statements?” Whose facts? Yours? Mine? Mike from Canmore’s? Elvis’s? Jerry Springer’s?
Whatever happened to “This is my opinion.”? This is my opinion.