Truth in Elections: A Modest Proposal

July 29, 2012 in Analysis & Editorial, Featured News

To Lie Or Not To LieIn a time when our country is in real trouble, we need the real truth from our politicians. People are struggling just to put food on the table. There are no jobs, home values are at their lowest in decades, foreclosures are ramping up, health insurance is a costly mess, and social security and Medicare are on the verge of collapse. We need to get the real facts about what’s really going on to make realistic choices. We need a system in place to make the election process transparent and the relevant facts credibly available.

Both Presidential candidates in this election are airing horrible lies about, not just each other, but about the facts and issues critical to the nation’s problems. How can voters make educated and clear choices about who is best suited to help lead them out of our current mess if they aren’t told the truth? Apparently the candidates don’t care. Each one wants to win, and is willing to say whatever it takes to get himself elected. This election should be about who can do the best job, not who can make false promises.

Let’s create a political truth-in-advertising panel of citizens that is not just bi-partisan, but comprised of non-governmental employees and business professionals. It would be like the Supreme Court of Political Advertising: no favoritism, bias or political affiliations. This panel must be free of any financial commitments and must have full autonomy to govern and act on the advertising presented to them for approval before airing. More than that, it must have full and irrefutable control to regulate political advertising to ensure its accuracy.

That advertising must be submitted to said panel before airing. All facts and issues presented in each spot must be backed by real information, documented, notarized and subject to criminal or civil penalties if proven inaccurate. Anything misleading must be removed and changed to comply with the mandates before airing.

This would eliminate editing of video footage to give the wrong message and any out-of-context information, which is very common. All facts presented would be accurate and verifiable. The execution must comply or it will not air. It’s that simple. If the ad does not comply, the ad can be pulled off the air until it does.

We are in a lot of trouble in this country, both politically and economically. Only the American electorate can change that. That’s if they are given the relevant facts to make informed decisions. Let us hope that they get that. Perhaps one of our politicians will read this modest proposal and run with the idea. In this writer’s humble opinion, America can afford no less enthusiasm or integrity in its electoral process.