Sunday July 26, 2020
Lies, Damned Lies, and Trump
I'm not a big fan of Frank Bruni, but I like his column in today‘s Times, all about Trump’s re-election strategy:
...his strategy isn't really “law and order” or racism or a demonization of liberals as monument-phobic wackadoodles or a diminution of Joe Biden as a doddering wreck. All of those gambits are there, but they spring from and burble back to a larger, overarching scheme. His strategy is fiction. His strategy is lies.
Can he sell enough Americans on the make-believe that he really cares about the quality of life in cities and is dispatching federal officers as a constructive measure rather than a provocative one, in a flash of empathy versus a fit of vanity? He gave himself away a few days ago when he punctuated a mention of “the wonderful people of Chicago” with the needless notation that it's “a city I know very well.” Everything Trump says is self-referential, and everything he does is self-reverential.
This is pretty dead-on. Then Bruni goes over the recent lies:
- Joe Biden plans to abolish the police
- U.S. management of the Covid pandemic has made us “the envy of the world”
- The pollsters who predict he‘ll lose in November are incompetent liars
He goes over why Trump gets away with it: social media platforms, particularly Facebook; internet clusters reveling in a made-up world. Does he mention the weakness of the mainstream media? He should.
It’s a good column. It's a good reminder to just call out the lies. Bruni anticipates they'll get worse before November, and they will. Trump has gotten away with it all his life but I get the feeling the bill is coming due. Pass the popcorn.