Usually, when a president, or any politician, argues for or defends a position, they use details of the subject. They will use facts while also omitting details that hurt their argument. Sometimes they’ll even lie. Every politician lies. What Donald Trump does with lies isn’t just different, it’s dangerous.
Trump does not argue details or cite evidence or facts. He vilifies. For example, James Comey is a proven liar, leaker and Trump has done us a “great service” by firing him. There’s no evidence Comey lied about anything. There’s no evidence he leaked, but the narrative used by Trump and his sycophants is that Comey is a bad actor. It gets worse.
Trump will engage in conspiracy theories that are so bizarre they should make your tinfoil-wearing, attic-dwelling uncle say, “That crap is cray-cray.” Trump’s political ambitions began with the lie that Obama was not born in the United States. There has never been one ounce of evidence to support this claim, yet Trump harnessed it and rode it to his presidential announcement.
After Trump won the presidency, he claimed Obama wiretapped his phones. Of course, that’s not true, and he made the charge without any evidence. Today, he’s claiming there’s a “deep state” that was designed to prevent him from winning the presidency, and it still exists today in our government trying to bring him down. Never mind the fact that he is the government now and the heads of “deep state” are his appointees.
Trump claims the FBI, under orders from President Obama, planted a spy into his campaign to cost him the election and has even co-opted the term “Spygate.” Trump is so stupid and unoriginal that he had to steal the name “Spygate” from other controversies. A professor in Britain reached out to three Trump team members, Carter Page, George Papadopoulos, and Sam Clovis to inquire about their connections to Russia, and he reported his findings to the FBI. If the FBI was trying to derail the Trump campaign, they did a horrible job of it by making announcements they were investigating Hillary Clinton. They never made an announcement about investigating Trump.
American intelligence received warnings from officials in Britain and Australia about Russians attempting to meddle in the Trump campaign. They received no warnings from the Trump campaign itself. Trump’s team was eager and ready to receive cooperation from Russian agents to win the election.
When Trump screams “Spygate,” he’s deflecting from the fact that he hired Russian spies, he allowed them into his campaign headquarters, and that he even shouted on television asking Vladimir Putin to help him win the presidency. Trump says “Spygate” could be the biggest political scandal in history and everybody in the media is using the term. No and no. This so-called “Spygate” is totally made up from Trump’s feeble imagination and nobody in the media was using the term before Trump, unless they were talking about the New England Patriots spying on the New York Jets.
This is where it goes from being stupid, bizarre, slightly amusing to dangerous. People are listening and believing him.
A recent poll finds that 59% of Americans don’t believe Special Counsel Robert Mueller has uncovered any crimes, despite the fact, the investigation has issues 17 criminal indictments, five guilty pleas and has sent one person to prison. This is from the Goebbels playbook. If you repeat a lie enough people will start believing it, especially those who want to believe. Trump could tweet that the FBI has installed alien lizard people coordinated by Elvis to spy on him and his sycophants will believe it. This has created pressure on those in Washington who are attempting to remain adults.
The Justice Department caved into Trump’s demands faster than a room full of NFL owners to look into “Spygate” and Republicans have been pressuring them to reveal the identity of informants. What they really want to know is what do the DOJ and FBI have on Trump. Yesterday, the DOJ held a meeting with the Gang of Eight, the leaders of Congress from both parties to show them what they had concerning “Spygate.” They actually held two meetings, the first with Republicans Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes (who has used his position to deliver evidence to the White House), Trey Gowdy (because after holding numerous Benghazi hearings, he’s really good with the conspiracy crap), and Democrat Adam Schiff. They attempted to prevent any Democrats from attending these meetings. At the second meeting, Trump’s Chief of Staff John Kelly and White House lawyer Emmett Flood were allowed to attend. Kelly and Flood had no business attending that meeting other than gaining material for Trump’s defense. Their presence should not have been allowed.
Rudy Giuliani went on Fox News and boasted that the Republicans would provide information from the meetings to Trump’s legal team, which proved what this is really all about. This is not draining the swamp. It’s a BYOB swamp party. Bring Your Own Bullshit.
Trump is attempting to use the DOJ as his own personal protection service. Earlier in the day, he said people who want to kneel during the national anthem should leave the country. Trump has also said that our nation having “thousands of judges” to hear immigration cases is a disgrace, and we should dispense with the trials. Trump is using the strategies implemented by authoritarians on their way to becoming dictators, and that is using lies to dispense with democratic institutions. Checks and balances and separation of power will be rid of like the use of facts.
Facts are still important even though Trump and his followers have no use for them and argue for “alternative facts,” conspiracy theories, and confirmation bias. People who get most of their information from Trump’s Twitter feed and Russian troll farms will tell you that we can’t trust The New York Times and The Washington Post.
“Many people” have said Russiagate is like Watergate, but with stupid people. There is no Spygate. There is only Stupidgate. And it may be the biggest political scandal in American history.
Watch me draw.
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