Three things cannot be long hidden: the sun, the moon, and the truth- Buddha
As we the people come to realize and celebrate the power and accessibility of good information we face the unprecedented fact that information, this nation’s uniquely renewable resource, has been brutally weaponized.
Not that anyone needs more evidence, this piece in the NYT tells the story with clarity – and a flair. (https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2017/06/23/opinion/trumps-lies.html?_r=1) Wired also offers a fresh analysis of the basics in this recent article: https://www.wired.com/story/president-trumps-lies-and-untruths/?mbid=nl_7217_p1&CNDID=44690478
And yet the fact is that the forefathers created this democracy on the fundamental premise that we the people are thoughtful, informed, educated and oriented to search for truth. Today’s clash between truths and alternative facts is cataclysmic. The good news is that the torrent of alternative facts does not drown but inspires truth seekers to resist in creative and wondrous ways.
The fact that Congress is even now taking steps to unlock the work of the Congressional Research Service is a case in point. ( https://marytreacy.wordpress.com/2017/07/02/congress-moves-to critical-research/) In ways too diverse and numerous to describe concerned individuals and organizations are “taking arms” to resist prevarication. Some related stories.
- For an understandable overview of digital record keeping start with Don DeLoach’s article published recently in ELGL. “Archiving Public Sector E-Communications” counters the widely-held assumption that public records not retained are exempt from open records laws. (http://elgl.org/2017/06/12/archiving-public-sector-e-communications/)
- Daniel I. Weiner and Lawrence Norden at the Brennan Center for Justice at NYU School of Law take a legalistic approach in their recent article entitled “Presidential Transparency: Beyond Tax returns” (https://www.brennancenter.org/analysis/presidential-transparency-beyond-tax-returns) Their scholarly essay suggests a number of remedial steps that might be taken to right the ship of truth. The authors conclude “while not erasing otherwise unaddressed ethical problems, more transparency would at least help mitigate the resulting harms by allowing the public to act as a check on self-interested government decision-making.”
- If you go for the granular follow the presidential tweets here: http://www.trumptwitterarchive.com. Follow up with a digital tour of “The Donald J. Trump Presidential Twitter Library”: https://www.forbes.com/sites/russespinoza/2017/06/18/donald-j-trump-presidential-twitter-library-a-smash-for-the-daily-show/#710e1df96e0c
- This handy guide may help fill in the blanks: https://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2017/06/donald-trump-conflicts-of-interests/508382/
Clearly, this nation faces an unprecedented challenge. Instinctively we assume that the rules of logic prevail. It helps to face the harsh reality of the dilemma, to rethink the very nature of prevarication. Consider this thoughtful article: https://www.wired.com/story/president-trumps-lies-and-untruths/?mbid=nl_7217_p1&CNDID=44690478
One creative – and mind-expanding — approach is to view reality through a different lens, that of the artist. A good prompt to refocus the observational lens can be is this article published in Hyperallergic.( https://hyperallergic.com/387008/the-trump-regime/) To peer with greater depth into the creative imaginations of several contemporary artists explore this digital display: https://hyperallergic.com/tag/drawing-in-a-time-of-fear-lies/
The man who lies to himself and listens to his own lie comes to a point that he cannot distinguish the truth within him, or around him, and so loses all respect for himself and for others – Fyodor Dostoevsky