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Politics and the art of misdirection

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FromEditorsDesk Tony CroppedBy Tony Farkas
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I’ve always been fond of the word obfuscation, largely because I watch it unfold almost on a daily basis.

Illusionists use a version of this to perform their feats, and it seems it’s an ability taken quite to heart by our leaders.

Events, drama and issues bounce around the press, social media and watercooler conversations about trivialities which probably covers for serious issues that we the public don’t need to be aware of.

So, for instance, while you saw post after post after news story about the dress code being changed in the Senate for perpetual teenager John Fetterman, the House is debating on sending more and more of our tax dollars to the Ukraine by piggybacking on measures to provide relief to U.S. citizens suffering after natural disasters.

Even that event is misleading, to my mind, since there hasn’t been a proper federal budget passed since 2006. Now there is talk of a shutdown — again — so be prepared for more drama about people going without paychecks and seniors not getting Social Security checks, all of which will distract from the fact that pretty much the No. 1 job our legislators are supposed to do, which is fund the government.

Another for instance in my mind is the way-over-the-top “debate” over gender, which dominates pretty much every news and information source. The more things the government does that bear scrutiny, the more over-the-top things become.

While to many it may seem legitimate and serious, I have to wonder what is going unnoticed, say, like the fact that the legitimately issued leases for exploration and drilling in Alaska were unilaterally cancelled, the Strategic Petroleum Reserve is mostly depleted and new drilling leases will not be issued.

Similarly, the UAW is striking because of the government’s insistence on switching to electric vehicles, leaving the country dependent on other countries for oil that run cars and lithium that go into the batteries that run EVs.

There’s so much more that is going on behind the scenes, but we hear about the mannequin Vice President now in charge of a new commission on gun control, apparently since she did such a standup job being in charge of an effort regarding immigration and border issues. We’re not hearing about why, even though we’re told otherwise, that the economy is in the toilet, that resources and items are becoming harder to find, that electrical grids are becoming notoriously unreliable.

That last one is especially puzzling. I’ve lived through power outages before, most if not all of which were caused by serious weather events. I feel, however, that there have been more power outages in my neck of the woods just this summer than there have been in the last 40 years.

One of the keys to control in a governmental sense is control of information. A recent article I’ve read said that for the last few decades, the information given to college students has been framed in such a way that students have become disillusioned with the country; and the government is spoon-feeding its constituency drivel to keep attention focused elsewhere while it manufactures crises to keep things destabilized.

At a recent talk, a local congressman said that in order to be informed, you should gather information from any and all sources you can find, and the truth will be somewhere in the middle. I would amend that sentiment by saying you’ll have to make up your own mind, and decide whether your source can be trusted.

Tony Farkas is publisher of the San Jacinto News-Times and the Trinity County News-Standard. He can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. The views expressed here are his own and do not necessarily reflect the views of this publication.

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