What We Know Now, by Rich Paschall
From the 2016 campaign right up to the 2018 midterm elections the best and worst of America has been on display, mostly the worst. While the vocal Trump minority will not agree, the picture of America now not only is degrading to most, it is also an international embarrassment of epic proportion. Having just returned from an international trip, I can verify that we look like third world thugs from the outside. Forty-five’s supporters just don’t care, however.
Imagine if you can, any America politician saying the following:
“A vote for the Democrats in November is a vote to let MS-13 run wild in our communities.” (MS-13 is a criminal gang, most of Central American ethnicity.)
“Democrats want anarchy, they really do, and they don’t know who they’re playing with, folks.” (Another fear tactic of epic proportion)
“Who wouldn’t take Kate’s picture and make lots of money if she does the nude sunbathing thing. Come on, Kate!” (Regarding the Duchess of Cambridge)
“Sorry losers and haters, but my I.Q. is one of the highest – and you all know it! Please don’t feel so stupid or insecure, it’s not your fault.” (You be the judge.)
“This is an island surrounded by water, big water, ocean water.” (On Puerto Rico, see above)
“We’ve got to keep our country safe. You look at what’s happening in Germany, you look what’s happening last night in Sweden. Sweden! Who would believe this?” (This was said on Feb. 18, 2017. Nothing of note was reported in Sweden the night before.)
There are literally thousands of these statements. Reputable websites and media outlets have reported them to the general public. There is video evidence on these and just about all of the thousands of lies and outrageous opinions expressed by 45. It would seem to be an indisputable fact that 45 is not just a bad president, he is also one on the most narcissistic and deceitful people on the planet.
The level of the con job being perpetrated on the American public by 45 might be of little surprise to the people who have done business with him in the past. It might also be of no surprise to those who followed the celebrity of the reality TV star. But it sure seems to be a surprise to much of the public.
With someone who is not a politician, diplomat or even a good businessman (reportedly), the West Wing of the White House often seems to be in disarray. The lies and contradictions that come out are not as bad as some of the policies put into place by Cabinet appointees and Republican legislators.
The party of Trump would like you to believe they have a mandate for their harmful positions. You know the ones: tax cuts for the wealthy and corporations that have exploded the deficit, deregulation allowing pollution of the air and waterways, elimination of school policies that protect students from unfair treatment, filling federal court vacancies with extreme right-wing conservatives (that will protect them), putting immigrant children in cages, ignoring the needs of Puerto Rico (a Commonwealth of the United States), and the list goes on.
The fact is they have no mandate at all. Trump lost the popular vote to Hillary Clinton by 2.9 million votes. While 45 likes to tell his followers that the Democrats stole millions of votes as a way of explaining this, if the Russia collusion claim is true, millions of votes may have been stolen for Trump.
Here is the mortifying part of all this. There is an overwhelming number of people in this country who believe the lies told regularly, daily in fact, by the Trump administration, or they just don’t care. They have a man who will speak his mind, no matter how crazy it is, and they like that. While they are cheering him on, his government is enacting policies that hurt almost every one of them.
“I think the most damaging aspect of Trump’s lies is that many people believe him. The more Trump tells lies, the fewer people seem to care,” opined Ted Slowak of the Daily Southtown. “I think it’s wrong for the president to say those who disagree with his views on immigration want terrorists and violent criminals to come into our country.” But that is what he says and what his followers believe.
As he left the Senate, former Senator Al Franken commented that he felt we were losing the war for truth. “And if that’s the case — if that’s what happens — then we have lost the ability to have the kinds of arguments that help build consensus, or at least help the American people make informed choices about the issues that affect their lives.”
Sources include: “The 11 most dangerous things Donald Trump said in his Montana speech,” The Point, July 6, 2018, cnn.com
“(Only) 35 of the stupidest Donald Trump quotes,” 4 October 2017, tattler.com
“Trump’s biggest whoppers of 2017,” December 24, 2017, nbc.com
“Trump’s ‘best policies’ are the worst,” 8/12/2018, opinion, washingtonpost.com
“Slowik: Worst part of Trump’s lies is so many people believe him,” June 28, 2018, chicagotribune.com