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Lies, Damn Lies, and American Politics

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of

Americans now have something in common with people in the old Soviet Union—our government and the media lie to us. The Soviets used to say about their two newspapers Pravda (which means “truth”) and Izvestiya (which means “news”), that “there is no truth in Pravda and no news in Izvestiya.” The Soviet people knew that those two official organs of the Communist Party were lying to them, so they spent more time reading between the lines than reading the lines.


That’s what happens when you get used to having your government lie to you. You expect it. You assume that most things it says are untrue and based on the falsehoods you have to make guesses about what is really happening.

Lying is routine for evil governments. Once a regime starts down the path of dishonesty, it never turns back. Once it gets away with lying about one thing, it will lie about others. Its virtue has been lost forever. And when the citizens discover that their government has been lying to them, it becomes like an unfaithful spouse caught in the bed of paramour—you will never trust it again. Sadly, that is where we are now.

Benghazi, the IRS scandal, “fast and furious,” Obamacare—how many more lies?

Take, for example, Uncle Sam’s economic statistics. Does anyone really believe that only 5.8% of working age people are unemployed? Of course, leftists do. But for the rest of us, we know the government doctors figures, emphasizes the unimportant, and deemphasizes the useful to make the economy look better than it really is—just like the Soviets use to do. We should laugh when the mainstream media gush about how wonderful the low unemployment numbers are, except it is not funny, because the most revealing unemployment statistic, the labor participation rate, is at an all-time low, and it suggests that, after eliminating from the data people who have serious health problems or who have chosen to enter retirement early, the percentage of unemployed would be somewhere between 15 and 30 percent of the working age population. We would have soup lines three miles long in every city, if people were not receiving “food stamp”cards in the mail. Is that a robust economy?


Likewise, the government’s numbers relating to illegal aliens represent what the powerful elite want us to believe rather than a description of the real world. In order to make the masses of illegal aliens seem palatable, the numbers are greatly reduced.

Unfortunately, Americans are not as savvy to government mendacity as the Soviet citizenry were. When President Obama’s people said that his blanket amnesty would apply to about “five million,” almost nobody questioned that figure. But how on earth can it be only five million? The President said in his speech that his amnesty would apply to immigrants who “have been in America for more than five years” or who “have children who are American citizens or legal residents.” “More than five years” would mean anyone who came before 2009.

The questions is, How many illegal aliens were in the US in 2009, five years ago?

Pat Buchanan, in his excellent book, The Death of the West, cites a Northwestern University estimate of eleven million illegal aliens in the US in 2000. The official US census figure for that year put the number at nine million. Even when factoring in those who were deported, if the number of illegals in the country was nine million or eleven million in the year 2000, how could it be five million in 2009, when a million or more enter the country every year? Probably, California alone had more than five million illegal aliens in 2009. If we add one million each year for nine years onto the nine million in the year 2000, that would give us a figure of eighteen million, not allowing for deportations. However, government estimates have repeatedly minimalized the problem and exagerated the number of deportations. The Colorado Alliance for Immigration Reform quotes US Border Patrol Local 2544 as saying in 2005 “there are currently 15 to 20 million illegal aliens in this country.” That was in 2005—nine years ago. Isn’t it likely, therefore, that 25 million illegal aliens were in the US before 2009, the last year they could enter the country to achieve five years’ residency and be covered by Obama’s amnesty, not five million?


Five million or twenty-five million illegal aliens—what’s the difference? The difference is twenty million people—almost the entire population of Australia, or two-thirds of Canada’s population.

The thing is, the government will never tell us the actual number of illegal aliens in the country because the elites need to convince us that it is a small number in order to advance their goal—i.e., amnesty. It is never a good thing when the goal of the government is at odds with the goals of the citizenry.

The current regime lies glibly and often, but the opposition is not faultless either; some big-name Republicans told whoppers to their constituents in order to win re-election.

It is one thing, however, when the government and mainstream media lie to us. It is another, though, when we accept what the government tells us without questioning it.

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