Wishing this weren’t true

/ 23 December 2011

How depressing, even if accurate:

But I'm mostly impressed that even the dull-as-dishwater Romney has learned, and learned to exploit, the single greatest lesson of modern politics. Lie, lie often, and lie spectacularly about stuff: Even if you are, by some remote chance, called out on it, the overall effect will still be to plant the idea solidly in the minds of the duller members of the public, and that can gain you real votes. The Swift Boat Vets nonsense was really the textbook-worthy episode of this: I remember Nightline devoting an entire show to the accusations, and showing them to be without any real-world merit at all, but even serious frowny-faced journalism efforts did nothing to stop politicians and partisans alike from suckling at the teat of that sweet, sweet conspiracy theory. What's true or false doesn't matter: All that matters is the framing.