thinking about the world differently . . .
January 26th, 2017

How to navigate the NEW truth

5The NEW truth is just my term for the phenomenon spreading worldwide, much more openly since the 2016 Election campaign in the USA. Yeah, we are the “trendsetters” here, although it is no great source of pride.

The new truth is what both campaigns were using to twist and bend whatever info was out there to suit their marketing and communications needs. In the past, this was done in a more subtle way, such as the laws passed in several US states named “right to work” laws. These laws are specifically aimed at reducing or destroying collective bargaining power workers have (union representation), by cleverly denying unions the right to collect membership fees from workers when those workers are not members of the union. The rationale behind the fee collection is that workers benefit from collective bargaining (e.g. work conditions, hours, safety standards improve for all workers.)

Denying the agency fees to the unions undercuts their ability to support workers during work actions and makes their job harder.

The laws to affect these denials are called “right to work” because they allegedly “protect” the workers who are not interested in being represented by a union. This is, of course, a complete deceit and verbal sleight-of-hand.

Such examples of subtle deceit were rampant in the past, but in the new politics, sublety is apparently not sufficient. A new mechanism appeared a few short years ago, which more openly deploys a lie.

To understand how this works have a look at today’s Dilbert cartoon.

Pointy Haired Boss (PHB) posted a racist post about the mythical Elbonians and was called out by Dibert in yesterday’s strip.

This relates to the wave of “fake news” items, which is still another step away from truth and deeper into the reaches of lies which sort-or, maybe, kinda pass like true stories.

On January 14, 2017, there was an interesting article on NPR by WNYC On The Media titled “A Taxonomy of Trump Tweets“. It provides a brief structural analysis of the tweets produced by the new President of the USA. These tweets, while seemingly the rantings of an insomniac lunatic, do have structure, they have purpose, and a theme. The analysis is provided by a heavy-duty scientist, George Lakoff, a cognitive linguist of great renown.

The article is an 8 minute or so of reporter Brooke Galdstone’s interview with Lakoff, well worth your time. The transcript of the interview is here.


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