Ross Douthat tells us he is very comfortable with outright lies in politics. In fact, it is so faux to care about truth in politics (but never faux to display outrage at journalists asking factual questions about Palin's stories about her own family). He couldn't get worked up about Clinton's lies either, he tells us. Why? Because the ends always justify the means. If you're going to ban all abortion, you just have to tell a few whoppers and demonize a few opponents along the way:

The point of being in national politics is to win elections and govern the country in accordance with whatever goals led you into the arena in the first place, not to please columnists who disagree with you on ideological grounds but appreciate a finely-tuned sense of political principle.

It's really come to this? Notice the avoidance of what is at stake here: the basic question of truth: empirical, checkable, verifiable truth. How naive to care about that.

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