Tuesday, November 06, 2012

Half the world's problems will be solved if corporations and people aren't allowed to lie

Look at this beautiful advertisement of Qatar and Qatar Airways. Makes you feel like Qatar and Doha are beautiful places, isn't it? Indeed they are, except that Qatar is also a barbaric country that is accomplice [along with US, Turkey and Saudi Arabia] in the murder of thousands of innocent Syrian people. The ad doesn't tell this to you. Half-truth, in this case, is tantamount to a lie. The viewer is left with an impression that Qatar is awesome and beautiful, but no one educates the viewer about Qatar's ugly side.

This example can be extended to other corporations and countries. We are literally surrounded by advertisements and messages with praise about everything. South Koreans praise themselves, with no one telling the world that South Koreans eat live animals - an inhumane atrocity. Boeing praises itself all the time, but hides the dozens of design flaws discovered in its products. And so on.

The result? Most people do not make optimal choices, as they are largely unaware of the other side. To end this, we must outlaw half-truths and lies. Corporations must not be allowed to lie. Nor should they be allowed to present only handpicked facts. A fully-informed society will take much better decisions than a half-informed society.

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