These are Orwellian times. They are doubleplusungood for language, politics, memory, and sanity. Lies stand unashamedly as lies, passing for truths. The existence of videotape is somehow of no consequence. We see and hear it for ourselves but then misremember it. We are blackwhite in the Newspeak sense– willing to know that facts are revisable and experiences are unreliable. You say it’s black? Looks black to me. No wait, you say it’s white? Right. Clearly it’s white. You’ve always said it was white.
One candidate is being held to account for the unfulfilled promises of a wholly obstructed presidency; the other won’t be accountable for the last five minutes. Seriously. What he said five minutes ago – he no longer believes it. Didn’t mean it. Never happened.
Early on, he expressed concern for the poor but later moved on to claim a lack of concern. When it played poorly in the press, he grew concerned again. Passionately against abortion and outspoken in his belief that life begins at conception, this candidate nonetheless supported the “morning after” pill and vowed to “preserve and protect” a woman’s right to an abortion. He has said that he feels “very deeply about the need to respect and tolerate people of different social or sexual orientation,” but holds that “marriage should be preserved as an institution for one man and one woman.” These last two statements were actually made within the same perfect sentence: one that encapsulates the essence of man who will say anything and then stand by it.
Mr. Contradiction Man, the King of Doublespeak, is running for the Presidency of Oceania. How many of us are willing to live there with him?