Let’s begin with the president’s go-to guy and maestro of misinformation, Sean Hannity.
“Wow, huge massive developments in the biggest abuse-of-power, corruption scandal in American history. Dozens of top Obama officials have unmasked, surveilled Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn… all roads lead directly to Barack… we’ll call out the liars.”
Well, not all the liars, Sean.
What is “Obamagate“?
“What is the crime exactly that you’re accusing him of?” reporter, Philip Rucker asked the President at his May 11 press conference in the Rose Garden.
“You know what the crime is,” Trump said. “The crime is very obvious to everybody. All you have to do is read the newspapers, except yours.”
This is classic Trump.
He knows he can’t answer the question, so he pivots to gaslighting, ably abetted by his friends at Fox who consistently feed him the conspiracy theories, and distortions he loves to bluster about: from suggesting that Sen. Ted Cruz’s father was linked to Kennedy assassin Lee Harvey Oswald to… well, there are simply too many to recount.
In fact, Trump has told so many lies, canards, and prevarications that The New York Times stopped keeping track on November 11 in his first year in office. (I’m sure it was a big cost saving for the Times.)
Beginning with his lie about President Obama’s birthplace, Trump has easily become the platinum standard for lying, which has worked for him in his business, personal and current political life.
According to Washington Post Fact Checker Glenn Kessler (April 3, 2020), the president has reached a total of “18,000 false or misleading statements” regarding everything from the size of the crowd at his inauguration to blaming the Democrats at a February 28 rally for exaggerating the effects of the coronavirus.
“This is their new hoax,” Trump told supporters.
Trump offered up a stunning new low at a press conference on April 23 talking about the White House response to the coronavirus. (Due to his run-on thoughts, I’ve edited a little.)
“So, supposing we hit the body with a tremendous, whether it’s ultraviolet or just very powerful light…. supposing you brought the light inside the body… Sounds interesting, right? And then I see the disinfectant, where it knocks it out in a minute, one minute. And is there a way we can do something like that by injection inside or almost a cleaning, because you see it gets in the lungs and it does a tremendous number on the lungs.”
But listen to how his mind puts words together. This is Trump using his Darth Vader mind tricks to make his base believe he’s the genius he says he is:
“I would like you to speak to the medical doctors to see if there’s any way that you can apply light and heat to cure. You know — if you could. And maybe you can, maybe you can’t. Again, I say, maybe you can, maybe you can’t. I’m not a doctor. But I’m like a person that has a good you know what.”
However, what happened the next day set a new benchmark for incomprehensible.
In attempting to explain Trump’s remarks, White House press secretary, Kayle McEnany said, “President Trump has repeatedly said that Americans should consult with medical doctors regarding coronavirus treatment, a point that he emphasized again during yesterday’s briefing…. Leave it to the media to irresponsibly take President Trump out of context and run with negative headlines.”
Out of context? What context, background or matrix is she referring to?
Let’s take a second look to see where I missed the “out of context” part:
“And then I see the disinfectant, where it knocks it out in a minute, one minute. And is there a way we can do something like that by injection inside or almost a cleaning, because you see it gets in the lungs and it does a tremendous number on the lungs.”
Help me out here, because I don’t have my Trump/McEnany secret decoder ring.
Here is Trump’s entire statement and Q&A from that April 23 press conference. While he mentions doctor or doctors six times. There is no sentence that says or even suggests that “Americans should consult with medical doctors…” None. Zero. Zip.
On her first day on the job, McEnany told reporters, “I will never lie to you.”
So much for honesty.
Ms. McEnany should consider enrolling in remedial ethics training where the class would remind her that misleading or deceptive language, half-truths, or false impressions, are all lies.
Here’s how McEnany attempts to clarify Trump’s “Obamagate” comment.
“…it was reporters’ responsibility to ‘answer the question’ of what Obama did that was against the law. She ignored the reporter pointing out it is the White House press secretary’s duty to respond to questions about something the president said.”
So what is “Obamagate,” and what makes it “the biggest political crime and scandal in the history of the USA.”
“Before you shout ‘bombshell!’ ” media site, Vox, explains, (May 15), “Unmasking is standard practice. The Obama administration did it. The Trump administration does it. According to NSA data, from August 2015 to August 2016, about 9,000 US citizens were unmasked in communications. In 2017, more than 9,500. In 2018 — Trump’s first full year as president — more than 16,700 US persons were unmasked.”
Here’s the gist: “Obama and officials in his administration tried to sabotage Trump’s presidential campaign; when that didn’t work and he was elected anyway, Obama’s team tried to undermine Trump’s presidency by having ‘deep state’ operatives loyal to Obama stay on in government and work to take down Trump from the inside. The primary way they supposedly did that, of course, was through the Russia investigation.”
Trump is promoting all these lies to explain to his base that he is vigorously defending himself from the “Deep State.” After all, Trump says, he has been treated worse than Abraham Lincoln.
How would Lincoln describe Trump’s “Deep State” theories?
“How many legs does a dog have if you call his tail a leg? Four. Saying that a tail is a leg doesn’t make it a leg.”