President Donald Trump’s false persistence that he is the rightful winner of the 2020 election has exposed like absolutely nothing else in his time in office the possibility that America is ending up being a post-truth society, where political partisans can’t agree on a unifying structure of facts, and emotion and personal belief steer the winds of popular opinion.
Since the vote, Democrats and Republicans appear to be living in various worlds. Fans of President-elect Joe Biden point to his solid leads in a number of essential battleground states and record-breaking total vote overall as evidence he won fair and square. Many supporters of President Trump have been convinced by right-wing media claims, so far unsupported by evidence, that the election was swarming with fraud– with dead people voting, tallies tossed, and damaged election devices changing countless votes at a swipe.
Caught in between are state and national election authorities of both parties who insist that the country has managed the heroic act of holding a fair and totally free vote, without any more glitches than normal, in spite of a pandemic and historical turnout. They point out that the Trump project’s numerous claims about the results have practically all collapsed and are not doing anything however further recording the strength of Mr. Biden’s win.
Republican Al Schmidt, a Philadelphia city commissioner, possibly promoted many of these undersung election employees in a CNN interview recently.
” I understand a great deal of individuals more than happy about this election and a great deal of individuals are not delighted about this election,” stated Mr. Schmidt. “One thing I can’t understand is how hungry people are to take in lies.”
This divide over what constitutes fact and facts has been establishing for a long time, state professionals. It’s not simply the result of the increase of conservative media outlets such as Fox News or the election of a president whom fact-checkers rate as an exceptional source of political frauds.
It’s also about the rise of social media, the blurring of lines in between truth and viewpoint, and the decrease in trust of many national organizations and even the nature of expertise.
” It’s a phenomenon that’s not connected to one party or administration. … It’s not only an info problem. It has to do with the context in which details exists,” says Jennifer Kavanagh, a senior political researcher at Rand Corp. and co-author of “Fact Decay: A Preliminary Exploration of the Diminishing Function of Realities and Analysis in American Public Life.”
Unaddressed it might threaten democracy itself. As previous President Barack Obama pointed out today in an interview with the Atlantic, if we lose the capability to arrange the real from the incorrect, then by definition the market of concepts does not work– and neither does democracy. Our whole theory of knowledge– epistemology– is threatened.
” We are going into an epistemological crisis,” President Obama told Atlantic editor Jeffrey Goldberg.
Truth and politics
It may not have actually begun with him, however President Trump has actually shown that truth-bending politics has its advantages. A candidateship that started with Mr. Trump leveraging “birtherism”– the lie that Mr. Obama was not born in America– is ending with a president clinging to incorrect stories about why he has won reelection, in spite of frustrating evidence he has lost.
Throughout the campaign, Mr. Trump firmly insisted without evidence that mail-in ballots were swarming with scams. He called into question tallies counted after Election Day, though lengthy ballot tallies and checks are regular. Given that the vote he has actually seized on small discrepancies in county vote counts as reasons that the ballots of entire states need to be revoked and state legislatures must call him as the winner of their Electoral College votes.