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We are more concerned with what a singer does not say than with WHAT A philosopher SAYS

On social networks I recently found (and without looking for it) a post that included a phrase about friendship, attributing it to Aristotle. The point is that Aristotle never said that phrase. To my astonishment, the next message was a phrase attributed to a well-known singer. Underneath the phrase read: "Things (singer's name) never said."

The unexpected situation made me reflect on the current situation of our society in which thoughts that he clearly never expressed can be attributed to Aristotle, but if thoughts are attributed to a certain singer, then it should be clarified that the artist being quoted never said what is attributed to him.

In other words, one can lie (knowingly or not) with respect to the sayings of one of the founding thinkers of the way of thinking still governing us, but God or the Universe (please, forgive me, Spinoza) will not allow us to lie (knowingly) about the sayings of a famous singer.

Obviously, social media is a kind of lawless land where anything goes. And, in this context, one of the salient elements of the postmodern era appears in all its brilliance: the inevitable presence of post-truth.

As the Spanish philosopher Adela Cortina recently explained, speaking of post-truth does not mean that the truth no longer exists, nor does it mean that the truth has become irrelevant. Post-truth means that lying has been trivialized, banalized. It has become so commonplace that no one (or few) cares anymore.

Lying (in all its forms and on all its platforms) is now something so frequent, habitual, and daily that, even if lying is recognized as such, lying has become something almost insignificant and even "normal". (A recently elected congressman is a clear example of how normal the post-truth has become.)

For this reason, the sayings of Aristotle (or Socrates, Plato, the Bible, Abraham Lincoln, and many others) can be distorted and turned into superficial memes with no consequences and no need for correction for the distortion and misattribution of saying to those persons. 

But if the person being talked about is a famous singer, an actor, an "influencer", then it is better to clarify that the phrase attributed to them was not pronounced by that person. As María Elena Walsh said, we live in the world upside down. And as the tango “Cambalache” (Secondhand Store) says, “An ignoramus is the same as a great professor”.

Post-truth, in short, could be understood as the breakdown of all significant dialogue or, from another perspective, the enthronement of "opinion" (understood as a personal point of view uncritically accepted as valid) as the basis of any attempt at dialogue or conversation.

But, in this way, there is no possible dialogue, because everything is reduced to a succession of interspersed monologues in which each person does not listen to the other, but only downloads information to contradict the other person. This immature attitude of wanting to be right leaves no room for personal creativity or for the communitarian co-creation of the future.

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