Not really. An very old film, entitled Rashomon, suggests that under certain conditions there is no objective truth. Especially when what is at issue is what people are doing. Rashomon is about a rape (maybe, depending on who you ask) and a murder. Four people tell four totally different stories about the event, and who murdered the man changes depending on who you ask. The only certain thing is a man is dead. Four people, all involved, claim different people murdered him. The robberclaims he murdered the man, his wife Implies she did it. The murdered man states (through a medium, its weird) the he killed himself. They all seem truthful about the event. What gives? Finally, an unbiased third party confirms that the robber did it and there is all this ugliness that all three parties declined to mention….hmmmmm.

As for our politics, our polls we are definitely in Rashomon mode. People are seeing and believing what they want; and declining to see or acknowledge anything unfavorable to their position. (And that is where the objective truth really breaks down.) because for example, for 80 some percent of Republicans to say Trump is truthful? Is he really? Or are Republicans just refusing to acknowledge Trump’s dishonesty because it is unfavorable to their position?

One event will get at least 100 different versions. How well attended was the Trump inauguration? Very well attended! Best ever! (According to Trump and Co.) Not well attended, (According to the Park Service)

The women’s march? (Same sort of craziness) Is Russia America’s enemy? No Russia is America’s friend! (Depending on who you ask. Russia claims to be…Russia is not biased in any way. Russia wouldn’t lie about their allegiances. It’s not like they have a history of doing that. This is ridiculous.)

There is no longer any objective truth because there is no longer any consensual reality. Everyone sees what they want to see, finds evidence for it, and believes that steadfastly. This sort of reality breakdown probably can change whether it rained or not. I’m just saying.

Working with the Light!

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store