THE lying, blowhard politician is iconic in our culture.
It's a ready-made, go-to stereotype that rarely holds up when you sit down and talk with any politician you try to apply it to. But that may be changing.
Looking south of the border, the Republicans and Democrats have both wrapped their national conventions and the race for the White House and Senate is in full swing. And never before have we seen a campaign where the truth matters so little, not only to the politicians, but also apparently to their supporters.
Several non-partisan organizations have sprung up in the last 10 years dedicated entirely to methodically and impartially checking what comes out of politicians' mouths. Factcheck.org, Politifact, The Fact Checker, Snopes. com, and various others have been working overtime trying to sift through the political B.S.
The Democrats have had their knuckles rapped by fact checkers for making unproven claims and taking quotes out of context a few times, but we stand in awe of how divorced from reality the Republican leaders have been in their speeches.
The response from a Mitt Romney campaign pollster: "We are not going to let our campaign be dictated by fact checkers."
Why is this a problem? Because 45 per cent of Americans are ready to vote Romney into office.
We used to accuse politicians and their stoolies of "spinning the message," but we are well beyond that now. We are into the realm of outright lies. The scariest part: No one seems to care.