December 19, 2011 by David K. Sutton
Just Once I’d Like A Politician To Shock Us With The Truth
This article will borrow and put into my own words something I heard Thomas Friedman say on Charlie Rose this past week. For once I would like to experience shock by hearing truth instead of hearing nonsense from our political leaders and political candidates.
Too often the only shocking things we hear from politicians, especially Republican politicians, are outrageously false claims. It would be refreshing to hear a politician speak truth to power instead of bow down to it.
A political figure that comes closest to doing this is Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul. I disagree with Paul on many issues but there is some common ground when it comes to the use of military action and national defense. Paul has been a vocal opponent of our military action in Iraq.
Paul has also spoken truth about the reason for the 9/11 attack. It was not because they “hate us for our freedom” as President George W. Bush said. Instead, the most prominent reason for the attack was our presence in the middle east, specifically in Saudi Arabia. Paul stated this in a presidential debate back in September and unsurprisingly he was greeted with a chorus of boos by the Republican crowd. But he is absolutely right on this point and it’s refreshing to hear truth from a politician who is unafraid to stick to his convictions and speak the truth even when it’s unpopular. The truth isn’t up for a popularity vote. People can be ignorant to the truth but it doesn’t alter what is and isn’t factual.
To state this truth about why the 9/11 attack happened in no way condones the attacks and it does not serve to blame America. We acknowledge the truth and reflect on it so that we can learn from it. There is nothing wrong with analyzing why something happened and reflecting on what role our own actions may have played. We should not deny reality because reality is undesirable if we care to learn from past experiences.
I would not like to see Ron Paul as president. I believe his libertarian convictions would be devastating to this country, particularly the most vulnerable citizens. But it is refreshing that such a prominent politician is able to go against the grain within his own political party, stick to his convictions, and speak the truth even when he knows it’s unpopular.
photo by Flapa blog via Flickr