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The Truth Will Tell

Guy Reel

In a few months, it should soon become apparent to all but the lowest knuckle-draggers that Barack Obama is not a terrorist sympathizer, he's not a Muslim, he's not going to take away your guns, he's not a Black Liberation theologist, he's not going to raise taxes on the poor or middle class, he won't surrender in Iraq, he isn't supported by al-Qaeda, he won't play nice with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, he isn't a socialist and his health care plan isn't even universal, much less "socialized medicine."

All of these outright lies — which formed the basis of John McCain's run for the presidency — will be easily disproven as events unfold during the Obama administration.

So when the predictive lies don't come true, and the others are exposed as utter nonsense, I'm going to expect an apology from Sean Hannity, Rush Limbaugh, Sarah Palin and all the other professional liars. They must come before the nation and say, "I'm sorry, I was wrong. And I also lied." Nothing short of a statement like that will atone for the outrageousness of their claims.

Yet, obviously, that won't happen. Limbaugh and his ilk will have moved on to a whole new avalanche of lies. Palin seems to have difficulty making even the most elemental assertion without lying — just the other day, she claimed there was no friction whatsoever between her and McCain's staff, which anyone who can read knows is demonstrably untrue. And she probably thinks — and will think for the rest of her life — that she didn't lie about Obama hard enough. The right-wing still believes they lost because they weren't tough enough on Obama — that the campaign missed many golden opportunities to lie.


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Of course, they don't really see it that way. They think the truth about Obama was suppressed by the mainstream media — that no one wrote the full story about his association with William Ayres, that his relationship with Jeremiah Wright wasn't emphasized enough, that his link to Rashid Khalidi was swept under the rug. Of course, because their worldview necessitates it, they are blissfully unaware of the reams of copy written about all of these things. The reason that these weren't daily stories in newspapers and on television was because reporters looked into these matters and concluded there just wasn't much there! Although the right-wingers might think otherwise from watching Fox News, real reporters don't just write things to support a particular point of view. The good ones actually try to find out the truth and report on objective reality.

Many of these people still believe that Obama is dangerous and that his election to president means grave things for the future of America. Never mind that the election of George Bush actually did prove to be a dangerous disaster. They will believe in the goodness of Bush and in the falsehoods about Obama even when it becomes apparent that none of the lies are true.

Some of these right-wing believers aren't fully to blame. They have been misled and brainwashed by an army of conservative blowhards who tell lies, minute by minute, 24/7, on talk radio broadcast in every town in America. This parade of charlatans has poisoned the minds of millions and caused them to believe that the nation has elected a terrorist-sympathizing, socialist baby-killer. Professionals such as Limbaugh may realize, at times, they are lying, that they are engaging in hyperbole, but the listeners often do not. That's why Obama's election, and his performance over the next four years that will disprove all the absurd assertions about him, may actually be a chance for some of these people to wash the scales from their eyes and see how easily they have been played for fools. Well, one can at least hope

Guy Reel is an associate professor of mass communication at Winthrop University. He may be reached at

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