Friday, July 22, 2016

Trump said he would not lie; let's hold him to it. Let the fact-checking begin.

Political commentator Andrew Sullivan, writing on "The Daily Intelligenser," distilled Donald Trump's acceptance speech to this pithy characterization:  “Everything is terrible. I alone can solve. Just don’t ask me how.”

Sullivan expanded on this:  "It’s also striking how the concept offreedomis utterly absent from this speech. It’s all about government power – or rather the near-miraculous powers of a strongman."   Garry Kasparov, Russian former world chess champion, now chairman of the Human Rights Foundation:  "I've heard this sort of speech a lot in the last 15 years and, trust me, it doesn't sound any better in Russian."

So there's that aspect.   Trump presents himself as the "Law and Order President," the strong man with the knowledge, the will, and the power to, oh so quickly, fix all these things that are wrong with America that are totally the fault of Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama.  There is no complexity, no partisan opposition in congress to stymie action, no competing good causes for the limited resourses that require compromise   We only need to elect him, and all will be well.   He will magically replace bad trade deals with good trade deals.  We'll be rich again.   We'll be safe again.  We'll be great again.

It was sickening on so many counts.   What kept infuriating me was all the lies.   He began his laundry list of problems that he will take care of by solemnly promising to “present the facts plainly and honestly. . .   There will be no lies.”

And then he proceeded to lie in almost everything he said.   He lied in claiming that hordes of Syrians refugees are flooding into our country, and we have no way to find out who they are.   Some of them were so ludicrous -- like blaming Clinton for things that occurred either way before, or long after, her term as Secretary of State.   Some were more serious, questioning the integrity of our Justice Department.   He simply refuses to believe the professional judgment of the most straight-arrow Attorney General in history, a Republican himself who prizes his reputation for integrity above all else.  But the fact that the FBI did not find it appropriate to bring charges against Clinton in the email case is simply proof for Trump that Comey was part of a rigged system.   You see, it simply cannot be that Hillary Clinton is not guilty.   Trump's whole campaign collapses if they can't demonize her;  hating her is what unites this disparate conglomeration of people that is now the crumbling Republican Party.

Here's another easily checked lie underpinning a key point about taxes.   He said:  “America is one of the highest-taxed nations in the world.”   Not true.   In fact, according to the 2015 statistics from the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, we are among the lowest at #31 out of 32 they rank.    His claim about police killed in the line of duty is grossly misleading.  We are seeing an uptick in this year, but it has been declining every year for the past three decades and is less than half what it was then.

We could catelogue the lies and distortions ad nauseum, but the scary thing is the demagoguery, the jackboot mentality, and the dog-whistles to nativism, isolationism (his "American First" was the cry of those who opposed our entering WWII), law and order (Richard Nixon), and . . . yes, elements of fascism.


No comments:

Post a Comment