Truth doesn’t matter in political ads. Commentary by Glenn Schuckers

I tried to find out who first said, “Truth is the first casualty of war,” but it has been around for over one-hundred years. I think the proverb could be changed a little to fit our current state of affairs to say, “Truth is the first casualty of political campaigns.”

To see if that is true all I have to do is look at the current political campaigns in Pennsylvania.

Just about every current candidate thinks it is smart tp blame the current governor for the gasoline tax in the state. That will work so long as voters don’t look at the facts. The fact of the matter is that the current gasoline tax was passed during the previous administration of Republican governor, Tom Corbett. But that’s only a fact that nobody cares about and not too many people will look up so it doesn’t matter.

The current  belief at all levels is that truth doesn’t matter.

Another claim is that Pennsylvania has “the highest gas tax in the nation.”  That probably sounds good also, and it is easy to remember and repeat, but again the facts don’t support it. The state with the highest gasoline tax is California, followed by Illinois. Pennsylvania is third.

OK, the tax is high even if it isn’t the highest, but when it comes to choosing a leader would it not be refreshing to have one that 1. Knows the facts, and 2. Tells the truth?

And for weeks another candidate was railing against the policies of the current governor, Tom Wolf blaming him for everything that people like to think about the state.The only trouble is that Governor Wolf is not running for anything.  He has served for two terms and is not eligible to run for a third time. News Flash, Jake et al, your attacks are against a candidate who is not a candidate!

And then there is the candidate who promises to do the opposite of what the current governor has done. Namely Wolf is leaving the state with a budget surplus and increased aid to schools.  Apparently that candidate would also reduce the state’s support of public schools, would reduce the state’s funding for the State Police and would favor leaving the state with another deficit. Is that really what we want?

Getting back to Jake, he wants to reduce the gasoline tax. Don’t get me wrong, I dislike paying a gas tax as much as anybody, but I don’t like driving on roads and bridges that are falling apart either. And industries don’t like coming to a state whose roads are falling apart.  And his answer to losing the income that the gas tax provides? Of course, use the federal  money that comes to us from a bipartisan bill that was proposed by, Gasp, Gasp, a Democratic president and mostly supported by a Gasp, Gasp, Democratic Congress!

OK so we use that federal money, but what does candidate Corman propose to do about all the projects, say  better roads and safer bridges, that the federal money would have gone to?

Apparently the current crop of candidates thinks we are all stupid. They believe we won’t look past the slick slogans and short-sighted ads, and, sad, to say, maybe they are right. Maybe we will be bamboozled by slick ads and bumper stickers, again.

After all, we once elected a president who made a career out of lying, whether it was about his golf scores, his fidelity to his wives, his business practices or his political beliefs. Nowhere is it more appropriate to remember, “Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice shame on me.”