Our president says blatantly false things all day long. For him, they all serve a large and terrible truth

Our president says blatantly false things all day long. For him, they all serve a large and terrible truth

If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people … It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to … for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the ..

 

Is Donald Trump a Liar? Maybe Not — and that’s When It Really Gets Scary

By Andrew O’Hehir / Salon       June 24, 2018, 12:17 AM GMT

There was and is no law requiring the children of undocumented immigrants to be taken away from their parents at the border. There is no crime wave caused by immigrants in Germany. (That nation’s historically low crime rate has fallen recently, and as in the United States immigrants are less likely to commit crimes than native-born citizens.) There was no measurable number of illegal votes cast in the 2016 election. Donald Trump’s inauguration did not draw the largest crowds in history, and in his first year he did not sign more legislation than any other president. (Indeed, he ranked last among post-World War II presidents.)

Do you want me to go on? I definitely don’t. But how are we to categorize Trump as an unquenchable fount of untruth, who by the Washington Post’s count passed 3,000 “false or misleading statements” as president more than a month ago? Is he a liar, a bullshitter, a gaslighter, a prevaricator, an ignoramus or a delusional sociopath whose relationship to the world of observable reality and established fact is at best “transactional”? I see two viable answers to this question:

  1. It’s the wrong question.
  2. Yes.

The second answer is correct because Trump uses all those tactics and more, sometimes in ways that seem calculated and sometimes on what looks like pure instinct. Clear back to his first intervention in what could loosely be called politics, when he was a New York tabloid celebrity who took out full-page adsin four daily newspapers calling for the execution of the five young men accused in the “Central Park jogger case” of 1989, Trump has displayed little or no concern for the truth. Sanctimoniously declaring that the president lies all the time and that it’s shocking and scandalous, although accurate, isn’t going to convince anyone of anything or make good things happen. There is literally no one in the United States of America who is likely to change their minds about Donald Trump on that basis.

To some degree that’s even following Trump down the troll-hole: His followers either believe that everything Trump says is true and everything the media says is fake news, or understand that he’s a blowhard and bullshitter who gets the libtards’ undies in a bundle and love him for it. In either case, standing there with a ledger counting up all the things he says that are false or misleading or simply not nice is playing an assigned role of schoolmarm in a drama Trump is directing.

 

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