President Donald Trump has declared journalists to be the enemies of the people, an allusion to history with which the neo fascist leader is probably entirely unfamiliar.
The first 40 days of this administration are shaping up like the prelude to a Greek tragedy.
Once the most authoritative source of information, as the home of the leader of the free world, the White House has become under Trump a font of falsehood and misinformation.
Trump lies about the most insignificant matters and things or great consequence with equal alacrity. He shows no care or concern with the truth, regurgitating falsehoods as facts and often relying on unreliable sources for the majority of his information.
Trump declared his election to be a big victory, when in fact he got almost 3 million fewer votes than his opponent, Democrat Hillary Clinton.
Trump falsely claims he won 306 Electoral College votes, said he had “the biggest Electoral College win since Ronald Reagan” and repeatedly attributed his national popular vote loss to voter fraud.
Trump actually got 304 votes, because two faithless electors didn’t vote for him, and his Electoral College victory was smaller than those of Barack Obama, who got 365 electoral votes in 2008 and 332 in 2012, Bill Clinton, who got 370 electoral votes in 1992 and 379 in 1996; and George H.W. Bush, who got 426 electoral votes in 1988.
There is absolutely no evidence that voter fraud is statistically significant.
“To say that President Donald Trump has a casual relationship with the truth would be a gross understatement,” wrote Igor Bobic, an associate editor at The Huffington Post, who catalogued a list of 100 egregious falsehoods from the GOP administration. “He has repeatedly cited debunked conspiracy theories, pushed voter fraud myths, and embellished his record and accomplishments.”
Among the most disconcerting parts of the situation is the complicity of a fairly unified Republican Party, which has steadfastly refused to acknowledge the lack of credibility in the White House, despite some apparent cracks in that wall.
Rep. Darrell Issa became the first Republican to call for a special prosecutor to oversee the investigation into contacts between Trump associates and Russian agents who American intelligence officials have concluded were engaged in efforts to influence the 2016 election.
Others have asked for a probe of the dossier, compiled by a former British intelligence official who alleges Russia has compromising information on Trump. Republican US Senator John McCain gave a copy of report about Trump’s ties to Russia to FBI Director James Comey on Dec. 9, 2016.
Trump and his minions have yet to explain the three-in-one Russia scandals, while efforts to obscure the issue by changing the subject only appear to be encouraging the news media, Congress and other investigators to pursue inquiries about what happened and why.
Sen. Susan Collins, who sits on the Senate Intelligence Committee, said that panel may call Michael T. Flynn, who resigned as Trump’s national security adviser after he misled Vice President Mike Pence about his pre-inauguration conversations with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak.
Both the Republican chairman and top Democrat on the Judiciary Committee, Sens. Chuck Grassley and Dianne Feinstein, are asking the Trump administration to turn over transcripts of calls between Flynn and Kislyak.
Among Republicans at large, however, Trump has a solid base of support in spite of his dishonesty, ignorance and hypocrisy. Almost 90 percent of GOP voters are blindly loyal to the closest thing America has ever come to a dictator.
Fiercely loyal Republicans appear to be willing to forgive lies and even acts that potentially constitute treason that could weaken the world against the nation’s longtime adversary.
What is clear from watching the first few weeks of this administration is that the future is going to be rocky, with deep division likely to grow worse as facts become less important factors in decision making than political ideology and desire.
Entertainers posing as reporters may do nothing to enhance the situation, but officials who deceive the public are bound to crash hard once their unrealistic promises fail to materialize. Patriots have an obligation to call out the nation’s leadership on these falsehoods before it is too late.
Speaking truth to power may not make anyone popular, but it is better to maintain principles of decency and reliability than to stay silent as mob rule makes America less than it aspires to be. When fools rule, they threaten everyone.
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