Democracy depends on good storytelling. Getting your facts right is always important, but in a democratic government, we need more than good data. We need to be able to organize, explore, and convey complex information in ways that humans understand, retain and can use to make predictions from. We need to be able to convince normal non-data trained voters to make the best decisions for the future of our town, our state, our nation and our world.
Luckily, humans are very good at grasping and retaining visual images. So if your story has compelling and informative accompanying images, it has a much better chance of being remembered. Politicians, marketers and religious organizations have known this for a long time.
This presentation introduces data visualization itself in nice chewable pieces and serves as a great introduction to a field that has more importance every day.
If you want to learn more about data visualization and how to tell stories from data, this youtube playlist might be a good start.