Great and Terrible Lies

1 minute read

Our new president lies. Like… a lot. Despite clearly logging more than 10,000 hours designing realities, he doesn’t seem all that good at it. Most of his lies can be disproved with minimal research and that doesn’t seem to matter. People call him out on his fabrications and that doesn’t matter. He keeps spinning yarns and enough people continue to believe them.

“I do know that the slickest way to lie is to tell the right amount of truth–then shut up.” ― Robert A. Heinlein, Stranger in a Strange Land

That’s the part I have the hardest time understanding: why doesn’t he need to be a better liar to get away with it? It’s easy enough to make a snarky comment on “honest politician” being an oxymoron (many people have), but this is beyond manipulative smooth talking to lubricate the machine. He’s spewing a fever dream and his base is eating it up. Facts presented in opposition to his fantasies are dismissed as “fake”.

Lies, Damned Lies and Statistics

In his inauguration speech, Trump described a fictitious dystopian version of America. This alternative america he described was plagued by joblessness. Meanwhile, in reality, jobs are up and unemployment is down.

Later, he said, “You will never be ignored again.” Then, ignores a petition to share his tax documents.

At one point, he said, “We must speak our minds openly, debate our disagreements honestly…”, but when embarrassing facts were made public, the source was silenced

Perhaps his greatest lie was that his presidency marks “the day the people became the rulers of this nation again”. I’d believe that can only be true of a president that received the popular vote. He doesn’t strike me as a particularly good liar, yet his lies have gotten him about as far as one can imagine.