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January 8th, 2019

Lies, Lies and Damned Statistics

Lover and I watched the Brexit drama last night. Compelling viewing.

Fixit guy gets lots of money, from bankers, hedge funders, insurers, property developers and their cohorts*, all of whom, of course pay their full and proper whack of personal and corporation taxes *snort*.

He asks the people what they want to hear. Ordinary Joe Bloggs people, the masses.

He then gets politicians to repeat it back to them, ensuring that the good bits are robotically emphasised and the not-so-great bits scarcely get a look in. And throws in a few completely untrue promises and statistics to reel us in further.

Stir in a few million quid's worth of very cynically targeted ads via social media, and away you go.

He wins. And then vanishes.

The group were left with a court case and a fine (most of them can pay that paltry sum without blinking) and still having won.

It's breathtakingly simple and utterly immoral.

It's a staggering example of how the digital age has sold us down the river, using our own habits and fears to manipulate us.

Money talks. If you are a large organisation or government, you can opt to tell people only what you want them to know. You can bias our opinions using incredibly simple techniques, combined with incredibly clever software. You can crush individuals and potentially bring down governments.

You might call somebody like him an adviser or communications specialist or media guru. Professional liar might be more on point.

Most people will believe what they are told, based on fondly imagining that the person doing the telling is imbued with the same amount of common decency as themselves. We look up to what we perceive to be authority figures. The Brexit fiasco and the lies openly propagated show us what mugs we've been. When I say we, I voted remain, and still firmly believe that was the right choice.

Effectively as end users, we pay companies to pay professional liars to paint black white and sell us a rainbow.

It's been both eye opening and eye watering, hasn't it.

* Rocco Forte gave £42k. Jesus man, why????? Your entire business, both in terms of suppliers and users depends on foreigners!


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