By D. Allan Kerr
Not so very long ago I wrote a column exploring Donald J. Trump’s strange propensity for lying about pretty much anything.
I didn’t think it would be necessary to follow up on that diatribe, but at this point the breakneck pace at which the chronological liar continues his onslaught against fact kind of demands it. And apparently his lying is infectious.
So let’s review:
Using the Republican National Convention as a jumping-off point, the Nutty Professor’s poor wife Melania got busted for plagiarizing Michelle Obama’s speech at a similar convention eight years ago. First the campaign vehemently denied any plagiarism had occurred – even in the face of, you know, the facts.
Then the literary theft was blamed on a Trump staffer, which means Melania lied when she told the folks on the Today show before the convention that she’d written the speech herself “with little help as possible.”
It later turned out she’d also lied about earning a college degree in design and architecture back in her native Slovenia, as biographers revealed she had actually dropped out after just one year. Her website listing the claim was later removed in its entirety from the Internet.
For the record, I don’t blame Melania for all this. It’s safe to assume when she married this oaf in 2005 she didn’t think people would seriously consider him as a potential president. She’s clearly in over her head now, almost as deeply as Trump himself.
The Orange Messiah’s own lies at the convention were mostly just tired old retreads, although he did unveil the interesting claim that “I alone can fix” whatever’s wrong with the country.
Meanwhile, he’s been on quite a roll since the convention.
- He lied about the Clinton campaign rigging the upcoming presidential debates so they would take place during NFL games – even though these were scheduled by a non-partisan commission nearly a year ago.
- Then he lied about a letter from the NFL he said he received complaining about the conflict. The NFL declared that no such letter was ever sent.
- He lied about rejecting a meeting with the deep-pocketed Koch brothers – after it became clear that they had no intention of channeling funds to Trump, despite pleas from his supporters. Then the brothers declared that no such invitation was ever sent.
- He either lied the other day when he said he has no relationship with Russian leader Vladimir Putin, or he lied all the times before when he claimed that he did. But either way, he seems as eager to appease the Russian strongman as Chamberlain was to keep Hitler happy at the dawn of World War II.
- He lied when he said he was “viciously attacked” by the Khan family, the Muslim parents of a Marine captain killed in Iraq, during the Democratic convention. In fact the Khans simply pointed out his own pledge to ban Muslims from entering the United States, and asked if he had ever read the Constitution – a question shared by many other folks as well.
- He lied when he said Russia would not go into Ukraine (they’ve been there since 2014) and when he said Clinton running mate Tim Kaine was very unpopular during his time as governor of New Jersey. The truth is, Kaine serves the state of Virginia and has never ever lost an election there, on any level. In fairness, these might just be instances of stunning stupidity. The Great Pumpkin (is it just me or is he getting rounder?) apparently thought he was running against Tom Kean, a Republican New Jersey governor back in the 1980s.
- He lied this week about Paul Ryan requesting his endorsement, prompting the House Speaker’s office to respond that neither “Ryan nor anyone on his team has ever asked for” such an endorsement.
- He lied about seeing a video of the delivery of $400 million from the U.S. government to Iran, which he described in detail. However, no such video has been released and his campaign had to admit he was referring to video of freed American hostages disembarking from a plane. Then he repeated his lie right next door here in Portland.
- In an ongoing lie that I personally find repulsive, the man insists he’s a champion for veterans. Of course, no one loves veterans more than a politician running for office – unless it’s a politician who never had the guts to serve when it was his time to do so.
What I find curious, and what Trump supporters should question, is why it has taken him 69 years to discover this devotion for veterans. I don’t ever recall him being such an advocate before he started running for office.
However, the Artful Draft Dodger prefers to honor veterans who weren’t silly enough to be taken prisoner during combat (like John McCain), or who aren’t Muslim (like the Khans’ son Capt. Humayun Khan.) And he’s not crazy about vets who refuse to lick his shoe, like Gen. John Allen.
Allen is a retired four-star Marine general who told delegates at the Democratic convention “our international relations will not be reduced to a business transaction” with Hillary as commander-in-chief.
Trump, typically, responded by calling Allen a “failed general” in the fight against ISIS, which is yet another lie — starting with the fact that Allen was in command of security forces in Afghanistan when he retired back in February 2013, prior to the rise of ISIS to prominence in Iraq.
The candidate who told an audience recently he “always wanted” a Purple Heart but sought five (FIVE!) deferments to avoid the Vietnam War apparently knows more about fighting terrorists than the Marine general.
Again, the utter frequency and the casual ease of this guy’s lies over even the most mundane matters is bewildering. Author Tony Schwartz, who wrote the book “The Art of the Deal” with Trump, recently told The New Yorker that “lying is second nature to him.”
“More than anyone else I have ever met, Trump has the ability to convince himself that whatever he is saying at any given moment is true, or sort of true, or at least ought to be true,” he said.
As I’ve said before, the guy needs his head examined. Seriously.
The danger for Trump now is that, like the boy who calls “wolf,” if he ever gets around to actually telling the truth there aren’t going to be a lot of people left who believe him.
(August 6, 2016)