We are in an age where some try saying facts are no longer linear. Or that the truth is malleable based on one’s perspective. The staff at As The Donald Turns went to journalism school. The staff was trained old school. They know that the truth is based on facts and vice versa and neither are rotating destinations. Thus, As The Donald Turns makes it return with the episode “Lying Liars Who Lie.”
As The Donald Turns; Lying Liars Who Lie
President Trump on Tuesday talked about the ongoing negotiations to avoid a government shutdown over the wall along the southern border. He said he was, “Proud of what was accomplished during the last shutdown.” Clearly this is not a lie. He is proud. Our question is why? American citizens were pushed to the brink of financial catastrophe. Yes, most government workers will get their back pay. Government contractors will not. But hey, any contractor who has ever worked for Trump is used to getting stiffed on the bill.
Trump’s further explanation was that he said he was proud because people learned, during the shutdown, about the crisis at the southern border. HUH? This is a topic that has been discussed for years. And if they were looking for facts, they were not going to get them from him.
Case in point was the presidential pep rally in El Paso, Texas Monday night where Trump repeated his claim about drugs and the border. “Every week, 300 of our citizens are killed by heroin alone, 90 percent of which floods across from our southern border.” Here is the truth about that. The US government does not, as a policy, track overdose deaths by specific drug. So, his first stat is junk.
Most heroin is brought across the southern border, according to Trump’s own DEA. But it is brought through established ports of entry in vehicles. It is not on the backs of migrants who have walked hundreds or thousands of miles to seek asylum. More drugs have been carried through underground tunnels, or even in El Chapo’s submarine than by individuals in caravans. The truth is, and the facts are, that if we are going to learn about the crisis at the border, in any form it can’t be from people who lie about it.
To that point, the president said Tuesday he was reviewing the new bi-partisan budget plan to avoid another government shutdown. It gives money for border security…..$1.375 billion, versus the $1.6 billion he could have had a few months ago. And it makes sure that none of the money can be used for concrete construction. We can’t help but wonder if the president has learned anything, like maybe he is not the brilliant negotiator he claimed to be during the campaign. Many of us who followed the details called him out for the lies at the time, but enough people believed him.
Rallying The Troops
His takes on Tuesday were really just a carryover from the nonsense from his Monday night pep rally in El Paso. It was like a professional wrestling performance staged as a political rally. A photo journalist from the BBC was assaulted by a MAGA hat wearing zealot. Like that was not inevitable. Trump ginned up the crowd into an anti-media fervor many times during the rally.
Of course the most often told lie from Trump lately, (oh who are we kidding….we can’t keep track of which lie gets told the most), is that El Paso was one of the most dangerous cities in the country prior to the wall being built. El Paso has historically been one of the four or five safest big cities (more than 500,00 in population) in the country since 1991 per FBI stats. From those same FBI stats, violent crime in El Paso dropped 34% from 1993 to 2006, when the money for the wall was appropriated. After the wall was finished in 2008, crime went up about 20%, and then has settled back down to its previous levels. Facts don’t lie even when the head of the pep rally does.
Trump also lied about construction of the wall along the Rio Grande River. He told the crowd that they started construction that day and the crowd should go check it out. The truth is there is equipment being moved into the area. It is part of money allocated from last year’s GOP approved budget and will be about 15 miles in length. The plan is to tear up the wildlife area that is the field trip destination of about 24,000 school children per year, and currently has a couple of churches in the area. The Catholic diocese of Brownsville is in court trying to hold up the process by refusing to grant surveyors access to their land. So no, Mr. President, construction did not start on Monday. Your rally signs that proclaimed “Finish The Wall” just look absurd.
It has been duly noted that Trump lied about the crowd size at the rally. He claimed the venue held 8,000 and then thanked the El Paso fire department for letting in a couple thousand more. He also claimed there about 35,000 more watching outside. By saying that, he incriminated the fire department in violation of fire codes.
The El Paso Times reports….
How many attended Trump's El Paso rally tonight? Not as many as he claims, authorities say https://t.co/QIpQzHmqZQ
— El Paso Times (@elpasotimes) February 12, 2019
What’s a Motto With You
There was an odd soliloquy towards the end. We wouldn’t call it a lie so much as an unfortunate moment of complete ignorance. And it was signed off on by a crowd too uneducated to know any better. In an outreach to his evangelical base, Trump brought up several times the “national motto” of “In God We Trust.” He said, “It has always been our national motto and we have never changed it.” Yeah. Ouch. Anyone who has passed a high school civics class knows that the motto was an anti-Soviet, anti-atheism oath of loyalty passed by congress during the height of the Red Scare in the mid 1950’s. Considering Mr. Trump’s lack of knowledge of history, or religion, we can see how he would say what he did, no matter how ignorant it sounded.
It was just a sign of the night. What else can be expected when the opening speaker was Don Jr.? Spawn of POTUS had committed to running the family business and staying out of politics, yet there he was at the presidential pep rally. Another lie told, another lie ignored.
He revved up the crowd as an opening act like he was Ryan Reiss. His material? “You know what I love? I love seeing some young conservatives, ’cuz I know it’s not easy. Keep up that fight, bring it to your schools. You don’t have to be indoctrinated by these loser teachers that are trying to sell you on socialism from birth. You don’t have to do it.” I mean, the teachers did get some of their tax write-offs for self-bought schools supplies cut by Jr.’s dad, so they should not be surprised by any hostility expressed towards the profession.
It all is just par for the course when the truth is not in the same room as the people speaking. It’s hard to tell the regular lying liars from the special lying liars who lie.