One of Donald Trump’s appeal to his supporters is his ability to tells it like it is. That phrase is usually short-hand for “he tells the truth when other politicians would lie”. However, Politifact’s record’s shows that 76% of what he claims is rated at just plain False, and a whopping 37% of his statements rate at the level of Pants on Fire lying.
It’s at about this point where the news bias claims come in. Many people feel that Politifacts is biased. But you hardly need Politifacts to prove some of this when he makes statements that are flat out lies and are easy to checked, such as the claim that the U.S. has a “$500 billion a year trade deficit with China.”, when in fact at it’s peak it was at $366 billion, and that was a year ago and has gotten progressively less since. There’s hyperbole, and there’s just plain exaggeration and lies.
Now certainly there are plenty of places where what he’s said doesn’t really line up with reality, but doesn’t everyone deserve just a little wiggle room when speaking extemporaneously? I mean speaking live in a stream of consciousness method can be difficult, right? And we all make mistakes. So obviously he should be given more room to move because he’s less scripted… or at least that’s how he sees it. The problem with that is that he has been holding politicians to their every syllable for years, and he knows it. The other problem that it glaringly indicates is that, like other people with these types of anti-personality disorders, he feels that the rules don’t apply to him. And when he is called out on it he actually gets angry and, worse yet, tries to attack back and get even!
These qualities may work in property development, I wouldn’t know, but I know they don’t work in position of power like the President of a major world power. I can think of instances with each and every one of the last few Presidents where they openly admitted, tolerated, and made sure to allow criticism and protest of their policies and actions, because they understood that when they took the oath of office they were promising to protect the rights of the people to do so. As a condition of their initiation in to the job they had to promise to protect the people’s right to criticize all government, as well as themselves specifically.
When Joe the Plumber criticized then presidential candidate Barack Obama we didn’t see a public slap-fest between Mr. Obama and Mr. The Plumber. Nor did we see any public reprisal from G.W. Bush from any of the many protests regarding the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. He too made it clear he felt that “Democracy is a beautiful thing, and that people are allowed to express their opinion.” Now whether or not either would have preferred that people shut the hell up is a different matter. You can’t have a thin skin in that job because you’re the biggest target on this side of the Atlantic.
At this point dragging dissatisfied citizens out on your campaign trail is becoming expected. So when the DNC invited the parents of fallen Army Capt. Humayun Khan to speak at their national convention, it wasn’t anything new. And the fact the Capt. Khan’s father, Khizr Khan, criticized Trumps understanding of the Constitution it was understandable, and even expected. Everyone wants their opponent to look like they’re wiping their ass with the Constitution, it’s the new fad. But now that the convention is over Trump is still having a one-way flame war with this grieving father via Twitter! Insensitive doesn’t begin to describe that kind of behavior. But what happened next is a story that writes itself. In an ironic turn far exceeding anything Alanis Morisette could write, Donald Trump publicly tweeted a reply saying “Mr. Khan, who has never met me, has no right to stand in front of millions of people and claim I have never read the Constitution…” Seriously, you can’t make this shit up, he actually said this! It reminded me of a job I once had where the boss wanted to log everything and anything by communicating through email only, even though there was only 10 people in the office. One day the internet went down, she turned and said to me “Can you send out an email to everyone letting them know the internet is down?” True story! That’s the kind of blithe disregard for reality that people are celebrating when they say Trump tells it like it is. It doesn’t mean he is truthful where others aren’t, it means that he will say the stuff that they have been told isn’t nice to say out loud anymore. It means they like that he can still be a mean old white guy when it’s no longer popular. It has nothing to do with truth. Trump doesn’t care about the truth, he has always had every intention of creating his own reality even if it means looking like a complete idiot by disregarding the Constitution while defending his knowledge of it. That kind of tap dancing would put Sammy Davis Jr. to shame!
His whole persona is built on his fierce masculinity, his unpredictability, and his uncompromising stance in the face of resistance… unless it’s one of his artful deals. With that persona comes his vocal support of the United States Armed Forces and its veterans. In fact his campaign was extremely vocal about the $6 million it raised for veteran’s groups back January, only to be called out by the press about the actual dispersal any funds later that May. His response? Well, of course to blamed the media for giving him bad press for doing a good deed. Even though he had yet to give donate the money as promised Mr. Trump expected to be honored in full for only doing part of the promised work… something for which he has stiffed many a contractor in the past.
And yet, somehow he got away with it for the most part. Sure veteran’s groups were pissed, but once he blamed it on one of his minions and gave out some money the whole thing disappeared, partially because he did something else just as ridiculous a few days later… and then a few days after that… wash, rinse, repeat.
He’s also one of the only people to attempt to attack Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) about his prisoner of war status as a bad thing. The only other time in recent memory that someone did that was when Karl Rove used it to question his emotional stability during the primaries. But since Rove barely counts as human and the action was more covert, many people just shook their heads in disgust and moved on. In this case Trump came right out and said that he had no respect for McCain. To quote: “He’s not a war hero,” Trump said. “He’s a war hero because he was captured. I like people that weren’t captured, okay? I hate to tell you. He’s a war hero because he was captured, okay?” This from a guy who, rather than demonstrate the patriotism he is trying to take credit for, instead received repeated deferments while John McCain was languishing in jungle prison. And as if that wasn’t enough, he not only refused to apologized, but instead doubled-down on McCain and his years of public service in order to score points with the vets at the same time. It’s the kind of move that only a man with a tenuous grasp on reality can attempt: “No, I’ve said it,” Trump said. “And, you know, I was disappointed with John, because I think much more work should have been done for our veterans. We have not done the good job for our veterans, and I will take care of our veterans, and the veterans know that. And I will say that in terms of polls, I am doing better — by far better — than anybody with respect to the veterans. No, I was very disappointed with the work done for our veterans. And we’re going to make it good for them again. We have to make it good for them again. They are great people, and we have done a very poor job.” (...allow me to draw your attention back to the afore mentioned “misplaced” $6 million in donations to vets.)
There is a part in Donald’s brain that sees the truth in very small segments that exist as he produces them. Anything said or done previously was either misinterpreted or is being used against him as part of some conspiracy. This too is common among others, who like him, have these types of anti-personality disorders. Therefore Donald feels that the rules don’t apply to him again. His blindness in these areas is so complete that I honestly believe he doesn’t even see what’s wrong with any of this and is simply reacting to the reactions he gets, and not the realization of what he said. I mean this is a guy who, when a veteran approached him and handed him his Purple Heart, stating “That’s my real Purple Heart. I have such confidence in you.” that Trump later said this about the encounter “Man, that’s, like, that’s, like, big stuff.’ I always wanted to get the Purple Heart. This was much easier.” And I think he actually meant it as a compliment!
Again and again he says and does incredibly disrespectful things to veterans and their families, and the GOP rank and file just releases obfuscated statements meant to quell the unrest surrounding the latest verbal diarrhea made by the candidate they ended up with, thereby literally adding insult to injury to the veterans and their families. Yet when Barack Obama is coming off of Air Force One with his hands full and salutes a soldier standing at attention while holding his cup of coffee, Fox News goes apeshit for months!
The part that scares me the most is that the GOP is behaving as a classic bullied enabler would behave: Making excuses, whistling through the graveyard, hoping against hope that this time really is the last time, and maybe if they can just get through the holidays things will get better. Only to have Uncle Billy say the wrong thing at the dinner table, and an hour later they’re cleaning yams off the wall, making excuses again. …”It’s really the last time mom, he’s going to get help soon. I promise.”