Thursday, February 9, 2017

Lie like a Trump: Update

February 2016—he's a brand-new freshman, which makes me wonder why NPR went to him as an authority (update: maybe the senior members are getting more and more reluctant to defend the Trump). Also wonder what lie he was telling when he made this weasel face?
The transcript of that interview with Mike Johnson (R-LA) is up:
INSKEEP: One other thing, Congressman, before I let you go, the president made a statement the other day. He was talking at Central Command - United States Central Command. And he said that the media were hiding terrorist attacks, not reporting terrorist attacks. It was a false claim. The White House was asked for evidence that there were hidden terrorist attacks. They came up with a list of many attacks, like the attack on Paris or Nice, France, that we've covered extensively, that other people have covered extensively. It's just a false claim.
But that leads to my question. If the president's policies are right, why does he have to make false statements to defend them? Why can't the truth suffice?
JOHNSON: Well, listen, I think the truth is out there. I think NPR does a fair job in objectively covering that. But, you know, I would point out Fordham Law School's Center on National Security. Their new report - they released a report on ISIS prosecutions in the U.S. They determined that nearly 20 percent of alleged facilitators in ISIS prosecutions, in our country, do involve refugees and asylees. I mean, those kinds of facts are not as widely publicized, but they should be. I think the American people have a right to know that.
"The American people" have a right to not be abused by this kind of bald prevarication. Note the particular gesture by which he sidesteps Inskeep's question by suggesting the president's mendacity doesn't do any harm: "the truth is out there." It's OK to him that the president lies, because NPR is there and you can always listen to them instead if you want. Everybody playing her or his own part.

And further evidence that this is a Republican phenomenon, not a uniquely Trumpian thing, when he proceeds to dump a falsehood (see previous post) on NPR, one that makes the president's falsehood sound more plausible. Inskeep is perfectly likely to come up with a correction on this sooner or later, but the damage will have been done. It really enrages me.

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