The unsurprising “War on Thanksgiving” lie

cheap applause material

war on ThanksgivingYou may have seen the New York magazine article. “Trump Says Liberals Want to Change the Name of ‘Thanksgiving'”.

This bothered me more than his usual rubbish. He tells this tale to his supporters in Sunrise, Florida. “As we gather together for Thanksgiving, you know, some people want to change the name Thanksgiving. They don’t want to use the term Thanksgiving.”

If this were correct, it would be distressing. But this “war on Thanksgiving” is untrue. “Even the Fox & Friends crew struggled to substantiate the president’s claim… They… entertained the possibility that Trump was referencing a long-debunked rumor that Barack Obama tried to change the holiday’s name to Celebrate Immigrants Day by executive order.

I was pleased to find that Hot Air, a very conservative site, confirms the BS quality of the story. They speculated that perhaps “a guest or a host made an offhand comment on some Fox News show (e.g., “Next thing you know with these liberals, there’ll be a war on Thanksgiving!”).

TV age

The TV was on and Trump “either misheard it or misunderstood it…” Or intentionally misstated it. “Suddenly the imperative to support [him] in all things requires righties to back him up by at least pretending there’s a ‘war on Thanksgiving.'”

Or maybe, “two Fox News executives bet each other a dollar, a la the Dukes in ‘Trading Places,’ over whether one of them could turn an inane idea like the ‘war on Thanksgiving’ into a bona fide moral panic among Fox’s elderly Republican viewership. Starting with the most important elderly Republican of all.”

It’s likely “they were inspired by a random greenie piece at HuffPost about how to limit one’s carbon footprint on the holiday. Eat veggie instead of eating turkey, for instance… Buy locally to minimize emissions generated by transporting food — you know how this song goes.

“The piece doesn’t call for boycotting Thanksgiving, though, or otherwise object to the concept behind the holiday. And it certainly doesn’t call for changing the name. It’s about climate change, not some bizarre conscientious objection to the practice of giving thanks.”

Of course, the new resident of Florida is also claiming that there was an attack on the big December holiday as well. “But now everybody’s using Christmas again. Remember this?” He claims credit for beating back the fictitious “war on Christmas.” He needed another “win” using “some cheap applause material about political correctness gone mad.”

The United States requires a leader who will bring people together, not a person who prevaricates to show up “them” as somehow lesser Americans.

Dems lying about Trump’s racism?

“bound together in love and loyalty, friendship and affection.”

Trump.racist..Newsweek coverHey, I said you can Ask Roger Anything. Someone I know IRL sent me this link from Fox News – “Deroy Murdock: Dem presidential candidates lie when they claim Trump is a racist.” The subtitle: “Democrats love to call President Trump a ‘racist.’ It’s a lie fanned by the Old Guard media that contributes to the poison of division choking America.” I’m not connecting to it, but you can find it if you want.

“These and other Democrats deliberately ignore the 25 or more instances in which Trump condemned racism, denounced white nationalism, attacked anti-Semitism, applauded Jews, embraced blacks, praised Muslims, and preached national unity and love among Americans, from coast to coast.” These include calls against white supremacy after the El Paso shootings, and generic good wishes during Black History Month or Ramadan.

This is a lot to unpack. First off, I reject the notion that the candidates are “lying.” They are expressing opinions. I mean, “What IS racist anyway?”, which I tried to address.

Next, the notion that the MSM is “fanning” the flames suggests something that isn’t accurate. I’ve watched the evening news on two networks (CBS, NBC) at least five days a week for several years. Many people, and I am among them, had been exasperated by the media saying he said something “racially tinged.” It’s been only fairly recently when a report noted when a “racist” comment had been made.

I have said I believe he is racist. This does not reflect a few events or policies but rather a systemic pattern of behavior.

An Example

One of the positive examples Murdock, citing a National Review article, mentions is this: “All Americans, whether first-generation or tenth generation, are bound together in love and loyalty, friendship and affection.” This was at a swearing-in ceremony in the Oval Office on January 19, 2019.

“We are all equal. We are one team, and one people, proudly saluting one great American flag. We believe in a safe and lawful system of immigration, one that upholds our laws, our traditions, and our most cherished values.” Yet his policy on LEGAL immigration belies his rhetoric.

In other words, his words are often not to be believed. In other words – yes, I’m going to use the same L-word here, so brace yourselves – he lies. He prevaricates about issues consequential and irrelevant. He states mistruths about foreign policy and weather maps.

On Full Frontal, there is The Well-Documented Case of Trump’s Undocumented Employees. One of them called him “a hypocrite, a liar, racist.”

“My African-American”

The man he once called ‘my African American’ leaves the Republican Party, with harsh words on his way out. “My African-American,” BTW, is, at best, cringeworthy.

His “attacks on the congresswomen of color in The Squad were the breaking point for… Gregory Cheadle. [He] has not only broken with the Republican Party, he’s running for Congress as an independent.

“President Trump is a rich guy who is mired in white privilege to the extreme,” Cheadle told PBS Newshour. “Republicans are too sheepish to call him out on anything and they are afraid of losing their positions and losing any power themselves.”

“Cheadle is calling out the ‘pro-white’ agenda of Republicans, and he’s come to have second thoughts about his initial response to [Trump’s characterization] ‘I wonder to what extent he said that for political gain or for attention.’ Don’t wonder!”

Still, if you are uncomfortable with labeling him “racist,” that’s fine by me. Former Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Donna Brazile recently said that she often has trouble from people angry because she will not label [him] as a racist… She thinks it is time for citizens to have a ‘conversation’ without resorting to name-calling.

“Brazile said, as a woman of color, people, and not only Democrats, expect to hear she thinks [he] is a racist, but racism, ‘America’s original sin, slavery,’ is something that everyone has to deal with.” This is no doubt true.

He cannot be the sole authority of truth

“He progresses from learning of the existence of a new (to him) concept, to misunderstanding completely what it is and why it’s controversial, to wanting it, developing a strong opinion about it, painted in a childlike understanding of the world and of morality to expressing outrage that anyone could have an opinion about it that diverges from his own.”

I haven’t written much about a certain resident of New York City AND Washington, DC AND Palm Beach, Florida. It’s not for lack of interest. Some of it has been a lack of time. But mostly, it’s that it’s too hard, with so many issues popping that I can scarcely keep up. I’m amazed how Lawrence White does it. But I’m not inclined to make this blog only about him; I have a life.

It appears that 45 wants to be seen as the sole authority of truth. The sycophants around him have said pretty much the same thing. This is particularly problematic because, as it was the case LONG before he took office and more so now, he lies. He lies ALL of the time. Or as Scott Pelley of CBS News gingerly put it recently: “It’s been a busy day for presidential statements divorced from reality.”

Orange has thrown around the fake news canard as he lied about the murder rate in the US being at a 45-year high. He lied about the media coverage of terrorist activities, making journalists spend their time fighting back.

And then there was the press conference of February 16, 2017 that was fact checker’s dream. Or nightmare.

The man tweeted one morning, “Thank you to Prime Minister of Australia for telling the truth about our very civil conversation that FAKE NEWS media lied about.” The only problem is, no one had any idea what he was talking about. From the Washington Post: “It was unclear exactly what [he] was referring to, however. Turnbull did not deny the candid and frank exchange between the two men, with sources close to him describing [Orange] as a ‘bully’ in news reports.”

I thought I had missed some news detail, which, I suppose, was the point. As a local editor mused, “This is more than a little curious. Did the president just make up what a foreign leader said? Did he imagine it? Is he gaslighting us all? Or, did his administration feed false information to the press so he could accuse it of getting the story wrong? Any one of these scenarios is serious.”

He’s just as politically correct as the ones he criticizes. It “makes it impossible to talk about white supremacist terrorism, or right-wing terrorism of any kind. He can’t criticize Vladimir Putin.”

See John Oliver’s take on the issue.

His lackeys lie as well. Press Secretary Sean Spicer references an imaginary Atlanta terror attack to defend the travel ban.

And in a bit of doublespeak that quite literally gave me a headache, counselor Kellyanne Conway said that the things 45 says that are untrue are less important than the “many things he says that are true.” WTH?

Interestingly, he is always talking about OTHERS lying. It IS quite a clever distraction.


*He often does not understand what he is talking about

Watching Him Try to Puzzle Out What ‘Asset Forfeiture’ Means Is Deeply Discomfiting: “What’s striking here is the manner in which, over the course of an exchange that lasts perhaps a couple of minutes, he progresses from learning of the existence of a new (to him) concept, to misunderstanding completely what it is and why it’s controversial, to wanting to reinstate and expand civil asset forfeiture so cops can steal your stuff developing a strong opinion about it painted in a childlike understanding of the world and of morality (‘Who would want that pressure, other than, like, bad people, right?’), to expressing outrage that anyone could have an opinion about it that diverges from his own.”

He Is Signing Executive Orders That He Doesn’t Read or Understand. It is well known that he is intellectually lazy.

The conservative publication Foreign Policy says his big mouth has already weakened America.

He and Spicer don’t know, or don’t care, that THEY called the Muslim ban a ban, not the “lyin’ press.” Presidents have always misled. This one seems not to understand what the truth is.

*He runs a White House Devoid of Integrity

The ‘swamp’ he promised to ‘drain’ is growing again

The president is using his continued ownership of Mar-a-Lago to line his pockets. “‘Swanning through the club’s living room and main dining area alongside Abe, he was — as is now typical — swarmed with paying members, who now view dinner at the club as an opportunity for a few seconds of face time with the new President…’ To capitalize on the the premium people are willing to pay for access to the president, the Trump Organization recently doubled the Mar-a-Lago initiation fee to $200,000.” Orange has spent two of his three full weekends as president there.

Conway is hawking Ivanka’s wares, likely violating federal law, after he used his Twitter bully pulpit doing the same thing.

In general, it’s White House, Inc.

*He is petty and vindictive.

He demands an apology from Senator John McCain for saying that the failed raid in Yemen was not a success.

Who disses someone at the National Prayer Breakfast?

Just read the daily links from the relatively apolitical Mark Evanier.

*He surrounds himself with scary folks

Advisor Stephen Miller: “Our opponents, the media and the whole world will soon see, as we begin to take further actions, that the powers of the president to protect our country are very substantial and will not be questioned.” Will not be questioned? He’s been a schmuck for a long time.

I would like to think DT and Steve Bannon’s coup in the making was hyperbolic. America’s Leading Authoritarian Intellectual Is Working for 45. Michael Anton, operating as a senior national security official, has written a “textbook justification for authoritarianism.” This makes Robert Reich’s question about the thugs at Berkeley not very far-fetched.

In other words: he is unfit to serve. I’ve moved from thinking that the Orange one could be impeached to the belief that it’s inevitable.

I’ve said it before, others have said it: this is NOT about Hillary losing. Some of it’s about policy, but it’s as much about the chaotic way it was done, his temperament, his judgment, his distressingly odd vocabulary.

And I was going to throw out there some solutions about how to deal with him. The problem is that I have a LOT of them collected. Some contradict others. Guess I need to synthesize these some more.

But I will say this: we need to be kind to one another. When you’re nasty to your potential ally in this fight, because you’ve been doing it longer, or know more, or have status, or are politically “pure”, you’re doing it wrong. If you drive away folks who mutually dislike Orange, how on earth are you going to reach out to those folks who support him currently, but may be persuaded otherwise down the road? They’re out there and we need to provide them somewhere to go.

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