Here are just a few of the lies George Santos, newly elected Republican Congressman from New York, told voters about his qualifications for Congress:
He’s Jewish. (He’s Catholic…and “Jew-ish”- not “Jewish”)
He went to the upper crust Horace Mann prep school in Manhattan. (Nope)
He attended Baruch College in NY (not for so much as an ethics class)
His mother came from Belgium (Close – Brazil)
She died on 9/11 (Actually Dec 23, 2016)
He worked for Citigroup (Never)
He worked for Goldman Sachs (Ditto)
Everyone is shocked! Seriously!
Actually, seriously? And you know what else? He apologized, not for his lies, but for his “embellishments”.
Remember Trump’s famous “I call it truthful hyperbole”.
Santos: “I ran for Congress because I thought Donald Trump, if he made it, it was time for everyone to have an opportunity.“
Of course, inspiration and achievement are different things. Even if Santos isn’t thrown out of Congress the day after he votes to make Kevin McCarthy Speaker of the 2023 House, I doubt he could match Trump’s 30,000 lies in 4 years.
You see, lies are frequently illegal whereas embellishments or hyperbole are usually legal. Most people call them acts of enthusiasm. I call them “legal lies” – Disinformation, misleading, misinformation, untruths, misstatements, misrepresentation, etc… are just lies wrapped in multi-syllabic BS.
But before we all get ginned up about political lies, let’s remember: Republicans didn’t invent them. Neither did Democrats, although they’ve never had someone at the 30,000 level.
You know who does? Advertisers. If you were able to count the legal lies told by advertisers in four years, the number would dwarf the Don exponentially. My current favorite is Prevagen, the capsule that is touted to strengthen your memory. If you Google it, the actual proof is… well, it might not win Jeopardy for you.
My guess is the last really truthful advertising slogan was coined in 1941: “M&M’s melt in your mouth, not your hand” by advertising creative legend Roy S. Durstine.
When Forest Mars (of Mars Candy) used the phrase in describing M&M’s to his advertising guy, Durstine (the D in BBDO), Durstine was smart enough to see the genius in that simple line. So have been generations of candy eaters whose hands remain free of chocolate smear, which might explain why it’s considered the number one advertising slogan today.
You know who specializes in legal lies? Lawyers. Think O.J Simpson. Think D. J. Trump.
And think real estate developers. Think Big Tech. Think Big Agriculture. Think…
…Big Pharma. They convince all of us to walk into our doctors’ offices, the people with a minimum of 10 years of medical training, and tell them what medicine to give us.
…Insurance companies who take your premiums and then do their best not to pay your claims.
…Car dealers. – the American standard in legal lies.
Think of almost any area you can and you’ll find legal lies are the secret sauce that undermines faith in our institutions.
We can be shocked! shocked! at Trump’s fanboy, Santos. Or we can be shocked! shocked! that it doesn’t happen more often.