I almost referred to the truth that I wasn’t trying to address here as “capital-T Truth,” so apparently that was clear … or you and I think alike, which is why I’ve been saying we need some time apart. 😉
And I think I concur with your premise: If said congressman had said to himself, “Well, I know that the way I’m throwing these stats out here is misleading and withholds a significant amount of context needed to understand the situation, but I don’t care because I believe the bigger point I’m trying to make,” then his approach, to me, is unethical.
That gets at the kind of belief I’m referring to and saying it’s important to know and understand: Belief that you think stands on real truth and reason and that doesn’t need to be obfuscated with statistical trickery or other shenanigans, even if you can’t get anyone to agree with you. But I might be digressing into the other discussion I wanted to avoid, so I’ll stop here.
You appear to be stating, in any case, that spin is a practical necessity of imperfect human knowledge and is a simple word to describe the sometimes-complicated process of representing a point of view. I can buy that, I think, particularly with you suggestion that we shift to knowing whom/what we representing when we communicate a message.