The lies mount at a rate of 14 a day.
It used to be that every word the White House issued was checked, not just for spelling, grammar, etc. but fact checked, with known sources. The White House used to carry a weight like no other place on Earth. You could walk by it and feel the authority imbued within it, an office where life and death decisions were made, how the globe would be managed. Now we cannot get through Memorial Day without Trump desecrating the most sacred civic holiday this country celebrates. Trump made Memorial Day, like everything else, about Trump. Because Trump thinks he IS the country now, and he WILL define reality, he will wage war against it to save himself.
Steve Schmidt, former Republican strategist appeared on Nicole Wallace’s show this afternoon and laid it out like only he really can. Steve Schmidt has a powerful voice, he suffers no fools and is unafraid to go against Trumplican orthodoxy. I don’t have the transcripts, I don’t need them.
He noted that never before has the American public suffered under a concerted propaganda effort run out of the White House, one that doesn’t try to “alter” the truth. No, propaganda done right makes people give-up on the idea that we can know the truth. It mocks the idea of truth. Truth has two “sides.” Therefore we see “alternative facts,” presented as if legitimate. We have an entire network functioning as state TV. We know another nation is manipulating our democracy, our leader denies it is happening, alone in the belief.
We have only seen such efforts from countries we used to count as enemies, hardcore dictatorships where the leaders essentially waged war against their populace. Does this sound familiar? Trump regularly refers to his “enemies” and he isn’t referring to foreign nationals (except perhaps those from Mexico, Haiti and various African nations). No, Trump’s “enemies” are his political opponents, his fellow citizens, ones whom oppose him politically, and investigate his actions. You can threaten the United States and be warmly received in the White House, as the Russians and Saudis were. You threaten Donald Trump and you lose your job, you are mocked, isolated and destroyed – at least with respect to Trump followers, see Steve Bannon.
Of course, presidents have lied before, but generally not in official statements, not on paper, not the written word. A judge once told me, regarding an argument I made in a brief, “sounds like whining, you can whine in court – you better whine in court, but never on paper, paper is sacred.” And that seemed to be the rule with respect to the White House, official statements, whether by letter, at the podium, or even tweet, those words are “forever,” and were sacred.
Trump lies “on the record” and it is getting worse. I’ve already written today (and thank you, readers, your loyalty is noted and deeply appreciated) about the unhinged nature of today’s tweets. Direct propaganda. War against fellow citizens, not with guns – yet, but with ideas, war against “his” own government, propaganda, conspiracy theories, lies as currency, all to protect himself at the expense of the country, the most dangerous practice utilized internally by any government purported to be “free” as a people.
I paraphrased, and surely didn’t capture it quite as well, but close enough. I did the best I could. You know how bad it is, or you wouldn’t be here. But it is getting worse, quicker than we both appreciate. Thank Steve Schmidt for pointing it out, again.