A legacy of Trump’s presidency is the number of blatant lies, gross exaggerations, and fallacies that you spewed forth in every tweet, comment, or interview on a daily basis. As his niece Mary Trump has confirmed in her book, this is a fundamental character flaw of this narcissistic person. Facts do not matter. Accuracy does not count.
Main picture: Donald Trump
Amongst Trump’s latest lines of attack against the Democrats is that he claims that the Democratic controlled states were the biggest problem as regards the severity of coronavirus irrespective of the draconian measures that they applied.
As my brother, Blaine, has time on his hands, having been retired for many years, he has assumed the unpaid role as the fact checker. In this case he states that “This was only true in absolute numbers and obvious given that they were the most populous states. When daily cases/100,000 are tabulated, they are performing a lot better than the Midwest. It should also be noted that given their sparse populations, it was far harder for the virus to spread. [in these states]
In particular some of the desolate northern states are showing frightening numbers (daily cases/100,000):
By comparison, SA is currently sitting at 2.6 cases/100,000! (Our worst day was 23/100,000)
So, there we have it. This is the 20,000th (sic) lie that Trump has told since assuming the presidency in 2016.
But will my pointing this fact out to Trump’s base make one iota of difference to their adoration of the yellow tanned man? Never. They are enamoured with the spectacle and a real-life reality TV show that is the President. The effect of the egregious lies by the president merely stirs his base up to even greater heights of affection.
Should we just ignore Trump’s utterances? Not at all. For this is the path well-trodden by autocrats and demagogues the world over. Treat one’s opponents as enemies and demonise them. The more outrageous the accusation and the more that it is repeated until, like Goebbels’ propaganda, it becomes believable. Herein lies the abyss that society faces. Especially the American electorate. In advance of voting even being completed, Trump has announced that the only implication that he can draw if he loses the election, is that there was wide-spread voter fraud.
Why does Trump utter his ludicrous comments? For every inaccurate comment that he makes, Trump assumes that at least a small percentage will resonate with somebody somewhere as fact, thereby enhancing his reputation. For the other 99% that are inaccurate, they will dismiss it as Trump being Trump and not internalise the issue. Human nature is fickle in this way. Like an ardent smoker exposed to some negative comment about their smoking habit, will most likely attribute the fact to somebody doing the bidding of the tobacco companies, rather than a concerned person. Merely providing information will not sway the majority of the population to adopt a contrary viewpoint or even to modify their position.
Do not blame the Republicans for this failure. We are all guilty. It is imprinted on human nature.