The Lie

TimeWatch Editorial
March 14, 2017

The Free Encyclopedia describes the origins of The Economist Magazine. The Economist is an English-language weekly magazine-format newspaper owned by the Economist Group and edited at offices in London. Continuous publication began under its founder, James Wilson, in September 1843. In 2015 its average weekly circulation was a little over 1.5 million, about half of which were sold in the United States. The publication belongs to the Economist Group. It is 50% owned by the English branch of the Rothschild family and by the Agnelli family through its holding company Exor. The remaining 50% is held by private investors including the editors and staff. In fact The Economist Group is also owned by the Cadbury, Schroder and other family interests as well.

One of the families mentioned in the above paragraph that would most likely be well known, was the Rothschild family. According to the Free Encyclopedia, The Rothschild family is a wealthy family descending from Mayer Amschel Rothschild, a court Jew to the German Landgraves of Hesse-Kassel in the Free City of Frankfurt, who established his banking business in the 1760s. Unlike most previous court Jews, Rothschild managed to bequeath his wealth and established an international banking family through his five sons,  who established themselves in London, Paris, Frankfurt, Vienna, and Naples. That is why when you think of “The Economist Magazine” you would immediately think of the global financial issues of society. In fact, when you follow the articles, they do indeed testify concerning the banking systems and markets of the world. This is why it is so intriguing to find a rather philosophical treatment of a moral issue in their September 10, 2016 publication. The title of the article was “Art of the Lie.”  One can only imagine the title of that article to be a parallel of Donald Trump’s book entitled “The Art of the Deal.” Here is how the article begins.

“Consider how far Donald Trump is estranged from fact. He inhabits a fantastical realm where Barack Obama’s birth certificate was faked, the president founded Islamic State (IS), the Clintons are killers and the father of a rival was with Lee Harvey Oswald before he shot John F. Kennedy. Mr Trump is the leading exponent of “post-truth” politics—a reliance on assertions that “feel true” but have no basis in fact. His brazenness is not punished, but taken as evidence of his willingness to stand up to elite power. And he is not alone. Members of Poland’s government assert that a previous president, who died in a plane crash, was assassinated by Russia. Turkish politicians claim the perpetrators of the recent bungled coup were acting on orders issued by the CIA. The successful campaign for Britain to leave the European Union warned of the hordes of immigrants that would result from Turkey’s imminent accession to the union.” “Art of the Lie,” The Economist, September 10, 2016

Even though the article deals with the personality of the President, the real point being addressed here is what the author describes as “post-truth” politics. The fact is however, that the atmosphere of present day politics is simply a reflection of the environment of morality that exists.  The kind of danger we face is not so much from the “alternative facts” that pervade social media and those who are empowered to lead the society, the real danger is the seed that has been sown in the characters of an entire generation. Our children, who are absorbing the horror of the dishonesty that is being spread by those brainlessly warped “leaders” who believe their dominance is worth any level of destruction that they can inflict upon the society, will ultimately be completely divorced from truth. But those greedy, lust filled fake leaders, care not for the children they are polluting with their lies, they care not that the stench of their characters are destroying the very fabric of society. Their stupidity blinds them to the ultimate price they will themselves pay. They are preoccupied with only the temporary support that they receive based upon their dishonesty. Sooner or later, their lies will be revealed and where will the support be then? Listen to how the author continues his thoughts.

“Once, the purpose of political lying was to create a false view of the world. The lies of men like Mr Trump do not work like that. They are not intended to convince the elites, whom their supporters neither trust nor like, but to reinforce prejudices.  Feelings, not facts, are what matter in this sort of campaigning. Their opponents’ disbelief validates the us-versus-them mindset that outsider candidates thrive on. And if your opponents focus on trying to show your facts are wrong, they have to fight on the ground you have chosen.” “Art of the Lie,” The Economist, September 10, 2016

So in the month of September 2016, the Economist turns to dealing with the moral issue of truth. I can only suppose that those who would normally be focused on financial matters are realizing

How important truthfulness and trustworthiness are with regard to “The Art of The Deal.” If one cannot be trusted, then the deal cannot be made. The future will therefore be uncertain, because the level of commitment will be questioned; For Post-truth opens the door to a kind of relativism that removes all confidence and faith.

“Post-truth has been strengthened by the evolution of the media. The fragmentation of news sources has created an atomized world in which lies, rumor and gossip spread with alarming speed. Lies that are widely shared online within a network, whose members trust each other more than they trust any mainstream-media source, can quickly take on the appearance of truth. Presented with evidence that contradicts a belief that is dearly held, people have a tendency to ditch the facts first. Well-intentioned journalistic practices bear blame too. The pursuit of “fairness” in reporting often creates a phony balance at the expense of truth." “Art of the Lie,” The Economist, September 10, 2016

Hopefully, the abandonment of truth and integrity will not take hold of the entire society, for there will always be a remnant who will first seek and then hold fast to truth. I certainly pray that you will be a part of that group.

Cameron A. Bowen

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