Where Is the Truth?

Deborah Venable



Polls.  Polls are an interesting thing, aren’t they?  Polls conduct votes.  Votes represent opinions.  Opinions are like . . . okay, we won’t go there, except to say everyone has one and they all stink!


Some polls even carry the moniker, “Opinion Poll” as if we have to be reminded what the “choices” are measuring.  Opinions?  Where is the truth in the measurement of opinions anyway?


Take an actual election for instance.  They are still measuring opinions, and with about the same accuracy as opinion polls achieve, are they not?  An election is a random sampling after all – certainly not the result of what everyone thinks.  The vast majority of people don’t even bother to participate in elections or opinion polls.  In fact, I daresay that more people have participated in one or more opinion polls than have ever voted in an election.  So where does THAT leave the truth, huh?


I ask this question because we must have the answer.  The polling business is BIG business these days.  Elections are an even BIGGER business.  For every dollar spent to elect bleeding heart politicians, that dollar could have been better spent to charitably assist someone in need.  “Getting the message out” is the justification for grossly over bloated campaign coffers.  I find it interesting that the word, campaign, also refers to military maneuvers in theatres of war.  I guess political campaigns are just that – maneuvers of war, the battle of words, promises, and a grandiose publicity of would-be heroes.  The truth lies in the cost of the campaign. 


If all this sounds a little more than cynical, sorry, the truth often is just that – cynical.


As the last of our freedoms seem to be going down the proverbial toilet, I’d like to remind everyone just what is being thrown away.  Opinions grounded in truth.  That’s what’s being flushed, ladies and gentlemen.  We don’t even encourage children to learn real critical thinking any more.  Oh, the various curricula will claim to support this kind of education – even name a class that very thing, but the truth gets buried in the process that is taught. 


Critical thinking requires the mind to be unleashed to experience results of various actions.  Let that sink in for a minute.  Much of the so-called training in critical thinking these days instead cinches the mind up to follow a “more correct” path to a “more acceptable” outcome.  Here’s just one example:  Since everyone accepts that murder is wrong, why would anyone want to arm themselves with a weapon that could possibly kill someone?  Guns in the hands of individual citizens isn’t a good idea, so put your “critical thinking” caps on and come up with an alternative.  (Wouldn’t you like to hear a few of the ideas that come out of those thinking caps?)  Now, let’s see a show of hands – who believes in strict gun control?


Okay, here is another “path” that more than likely would be pursued in the modern classroom:  Since global warming is a reality, and fossil fuels are bad pollutants that have caused it, why would anyone be against mandating alternative energy fuels?  Put your critical thinking caps on and come up with ways to express this to the public – starting with your own parents.  Now, how many are for saving the planet?  Get those hands up!


Enough with the scenarios – real though they may be.  I’m sure if you really unleash your mind, you will see how collective opinions get formed and become the crux of public policy.  In other words, the horse is lead to water and then made to drink. 


Since everyone knows that political campaigns are expensive, and are also wars of words, why would anyone want to stand up publicly and say, “I will represent what the majority of you want if you will just elect me.  Oh, and by the way, this is what I believe . . . and if you agree, then contribute to my campaign and help to elect me.” 


Are those words more convincing in a war than, “You mustn’t support or elect that other guy because he doesn’t believe what I do?” 


Where is truth?  Somewhere in one opinion, or somewhere between the two, or is it perhaps buried in the cost of the campaign? 


The media does not dig for facts any more, so you are ill equipped to vote if you depend on what you hear and see in the media, just as you are ill equipped at critical thinking if you are the “horse that was forced to drink” from a modern class on critical thinking.  The media presents poll results and expects you to base your opinions on those of others.  That’s the sad truth.  Public policy is thus formed by the presentation of collective opinions, and over time, the truth is buried in them.


People on both sides of the aisle breathlessly watch and analyze opinion polls these days.  It is always worse in election years, but this one in particular is downright laughable!  The same poll can be spun to represent diametrically opposed conclusions.  Meanwhile, the guys having the biggest laugh (all the way to the bank) are the ones conducting those polls!  The big news this week is Obama’s “waning” poll numbers.  According to Rasmussen, the way I read it anyway, there are still a lot of horses drinking their fill of the Obama Kool-Aid – but then, what do I know?


Here’s a challenge:  Try following that one “daily tracking” poll from Rasmussen for a few days.  Don’t wait for the pundits to tell you what it says, just go to the horse’s mouth and read it for yourself.  If you have a really strong stomach, follow a few of the many others out there, and see if you feel any more informed without all the analysis!


Think about all the money these guys and gals are making just to provide all these polls and do the analysis for you.  Now, don’t get me wrong – I’m a capitalist, so if they are providing a needed (or perceived needed) service, more power to them earning the big bucks.  I’m just saying, how lazy have we become?  How dangerous to our freedoms is this attitude?  Where is the truth?


I have people say to me every day, “just wait till November!”  Well, what choice do I have?  Then others have said, “Obama doesn’t stand a chance of getting reelected in 2012!”  How can they be so sure?  I’m not!  I didn’t think he could ever be elected in the first place!  He was the most unqualified (in so many ways) candidate for president we’ve ever had, but too many people didn’t care about qualifications and had not learned critical thinking – but they went to the polls and voted for him!  Or they voted against the other guy.  Or they abstained from voting altogether.  All those in the legislature and in state governments that so many people think they can vote out in November got where they are because a majority of people voted them IN in the first place!  How did it happen in a “free” country that people voted for the chains of socialism and Marxism? 


The truth got flushed!


That’s how it happened!


 Polls.  Polls and those who analyze them have told us many things that are not true.  The salvation of America depends on citizens being able to seek and find the truth for themselves.  It is just as simple as that.  Then we must act on that truth.  The power of the individual to think and act for himself is the only thing we have left!


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