This article in Der Speigel raises questions about the prevalence of lying by US politicians running for office. It lays the blame on weak support for editing in the media, which is struggling with falling revenues, and by the ubiquity of the social media in spreading its favorite lies. It argues that both sides are stretching the truth but that the GOP is winning the lying contest by a wide margin. It also raises a question about the ability of the media in the US to continue in its role of holding politicians accountable in its historical role as the fourth estate.
The article raises good questions about politics in the US which has become more partisan. Politics in the US has become more like war. The GOP, in particular, has the objective of destroying the Democratic Party. It is the only thing that stands in the way of its radical agenda to implement a far right political agenda. The media is caught between a rock and a hard place. It has usually attempted to give equal weight to the information flowing from both political parties. It is becoming more difficult to uphold its position of neutrality under current circumstances. They are more comfortable blaming both parties for shading the truth, and they find it difficult to accuse one party of being more deceptive than the other. We have also seen the emergence of media outlets that are better described as arms of the Republican Party. Fox News has been very successful in promoting the conservative agenda, and its popular success has intimidated the main stream media which they have painted with a liberal brush. Talk radio shows in the US are dominated by figures like Rush Limbaugh who spreads the conservative message to his adoring public. Even great newspapers like the Wall Street Journal, which is now owned by the yellow journalism tycoon, Rupert Murdoch, has become more partisan in its reporting. Before Murdoch, the WSJ used to confine its politics to its editorial page. Its reporting is no longer immune from political influence.