Tuesday, March 13, 2012

1806- THE 2% LIE

I want to talk a little bit about how we perceive things- the way the media and politicians use propaganda to sway the way people think.

This weekend I spoke with my liberal friend from N.J. - by the way- when I use examples from our talks- these are real discussions that I have had with this friend for the last 30 years.

This is not a ‘made up person’.

Okay- one of the first things they said was ‘can you believe these Repub candidates- all they want to talk about is birth control’.

Now- I told my friend that this was a perfect example of how the propaganda machine works.

If you remember back to the first time birth control came up during this election- it was a question by George Stephanopoulos.

He asked Romney if states have the right to ban Birth control.

Everyone on the stage- and in the audience were shocked- surprised. Why in the heck would you ask a question like this- no one on the trail is talking about it [until then] and it simply was not part of the ‘conversation’.

A few days later- Stephen Colbert had Stephanopoulos on his show [Colbert Report] and he asked him ‘why would you ask a question like that’?

He responded ‘I had a bet with Dianne Sawyer that I could get Romney to admit that birth control was a good thing’.

He lied.

What really happened was the Dem strategists had a plan- they knew that it would be difficult for the President to run on the economy [even though now the numbers are looking better- to his credit].

So they had a strategy to turn the conversation into one on birth control and ‘the war on women’.

The president was just about to announce his new rule on birth control- that the Catholic church would no longer be able to not provide it thru their plans- and this whole conversation was orchestrated to get the average person to wake up one day and say ‘geez- look at all these stupid stone age Republicans- all they want to talk about is birth control’.

And Walla- my friend swallowed the bait- hook line and sinker.

Now- do both sides do this?

Sure- I’m just showing you how.

Now- the present problem [in my mind] is that Obama has been unable to distinguish between speaking honestly as a president- and speaking ‘politically’ as a campaigner.

What do I mean?

The last 2 weeks the president has been going around making public speeches and saying ‘when these Repubs say “drill baby drill” they are lying to you about the problem- even if we drill- we use 20% of the world’s oil- and only have 2% of the oil reserves here in the U.S.’.

Now- he has said this more than once- and sometimes he qualifies the statement by saying ‘proven oil reserves’.

But as you hear the words- you- the average Joe [Mary] think ‘geez- if we only posses 2 % of the world’s oil- and we use 20%- then just doing more drilling is not the answer’.

Okay- do we only have 2% of the world’s Oil here in the U.S.?

No- if you opened up ALL the oil rich regions- both offshore and on land- we would have 100% of our oil needs met- for 250 years.

Yes- you heard me- we would have so much oil- that we would not have to import any- nada.

So John- how can Obama say we only have 2%?

Well- put aside the ability to lie for a moment- and realize [like the birth control] that the political insiders for Obama realized that the gas/oil issue does have the potential to derail the presidents bid to get re-elected.

So they devised a strategy to respond to the Repubs argument that gas is going up- and blame Obama.

Now- here’s the tricky part.

When Obama uses language like this- he is using a little known definition of ‘proven oil reserves’ that the OMB [office of management and budget] uses.

This definition of proven oil reserves actually means- all the oil reserves that we are currently tapping into- and the ones that the govt. /pres has already approved down the road.

In essence- Obama is saying ‘out of all the oil reserves THAT I AM GOING TO APPROVE- we can only get 2%’.

And when the ‘drill baby drill’ folk say ‘let’s drill’ they are talking about all the reserves that we are not drilling from.

So- in essence- Obama simply lied.

Now- did he lie- like under the legal definition of Bill Clinton ‘were you ever alone with Lewinsky’?

Answer ‘No’.

Reason ‘there were other people in the building at the time’.

Okay- he was alone with her in the Oval Office- but in his mind- if there were other people in the building- or lets say in D.C.- or lets say ‘in the world’ well yes- you can technically say that none of us ‘are ever alone’.

But to the average mind- well- you were ‘alone’.

So- when you hear the president- saying over and over again [he has now stopped- I think- he got caught] ‘we only have 2% of the world’s oil reserves’ well- he’s using Clinton language.


When you campaign- and do stuff like this- okay- they all do it- it’s not right- or good- but they do it.

When you are actually holding the office- and people hear you say this- you are purposefully deceiving folk- you know they think something other than what you are saying.

I mean who thinks ‘Ah- he’s using the OMB definition for oil reserves- not true human speak’.

Who remembers where we left off on our Philosophy posts?

We were in the 18th century and were discussing Empiricism- the idea that we obtain true knowledge about things thru the things themselves- the empirical evidence.

One of the famous philosophers that falls into this category was a Bishop named Berkeley.

Even though he is called an Empiricist- he kind of had some ideas that were also Idealist- those that saw ideas and the Metaphysical world as the main source of knowledge.

You might not have ever heard of Berkeley- but most of you are familiar with his famous statement ‘If a tree falls in the forest- and no one’s there- does it still make a sound’.

Or the modern version ‘if a man speaks in a room- and no woman is there- is he still wrong’.

Berkeley grappled with the debate of what role does the observer play in the actual existence of things.

Does reality depend upon an observer- if something is not being perceived- does it really exist?

His conclusion was- things do depend upon an observer to exist [I don’t hold to this view by the way] and that God is the ultimate observer- he is observing all things at all times- therefore all things really do exist.

As you can see- Philosophy does get fuzzy at times.

When people use language- ‘2% of the world’s oil reserves’ they expect you to be using language that most humans agree upon.

When you say ‘I did not have sex with that woman- Miss Lewinsky’.

They don’t realize that your definition of sex does not include oral sex- or any other sex- outside of standard missionary position intercourse.

So as we progress over the next few months- yes- both sides are going to be using propaganda- the media- to make their point.

And some things are true- others are not.

Reality/truth is not something that changes- or depends upon an observer- if the tree falls- yeah it makes a noise- whether you are there or not.

When you say ‘2%’ of the world’s oil- yes- it makes a difference that you are using a definition that MOST HUMANS ARE NOT OPERATING BY- and whether an ‘observer’ catches you or not- it’s still wrong.


Note- Do me a favor, those who read/like the posts- re-post them on other sites as well as the site you read them on. Thanks- John

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