Have you heard of the Truth In Advertising law? The Federal Trade Commission is tasked with enforcing it and investigating any allegations of false advertising. It protects consumers from false advertising. The law applies the same standards regardless of where the ad appears – in newspapers and magazines, online, in the mail, or on billboards or buses. The federal law says the ad must be truthful, not misleading, and, when appropriate, backed by scientific evidence. Again, the purpose is protecting consumers from fraud and deception.
Think about the concept and purpose of this law at a high level. An entity lying and/or manipulating information to mislead/deceive a group of people. This law is focused on consumers buying products or services. You can easily understand the importance of having this law and enforcing it. Look at all the diet food and health supplements. Imagine what they could say and promise if we didn’t have this law.
Let’s contrast this to politicians and our government. We have no such law or even rules regulating what they can so. Some might argue that the public has the power to vote against a politician who is deceitful. Well, a consumer has the power to not purchase their product. But neither can exercise their right if they aren’t aware they are being deceived.
Why aren’t their consequences for their actions? A federal law for this would have to be written and approved by government. The very people it would be regulating. I think we all know they will not do that. And we know there’s politicians deceiving us all the time. It happens so much we have an entire segment of the media that fact checks politicians. And we wonder why the public has such a low opinion of government.
Then there’s the media. They don’t really have anyone fact checking them. Just about every media organization favors one of the two parties; Democrats or Republicans. It’s gotten so bad now that they really don’t hide it. It’s startling and amazing how different organization report stories and the facts they present to their audience. Everything they do and say is specifically intended to convince the viewer to believe in what they want you to believe. Now we see this happening to non-traditional media like Facebook and Twitter. Recently whistle blowers have reported that these organizations hide or promote content based on their agenda. Hide negative stories about liberal politicians while increasing the trending of favorable ones.
Imagine how informed the public would be if politicians and media were held to the same standard as companies advertising? Imagine how governments credibility would improve?