Improving Trump’s LiesMonday, December 25th, 2017
If the President of the United States continues lying, Alec Baldwin made that Access Hollywood tape twelve years before he played Trump on SNL. Baldwin had a vision of the future and knew Trump would be elected in 2016. In rehearsal, the lines were entirely different, and what’s seen on Fake News and media has been drastically altered. In the original version of the script, Trump saw a car on fire and rescued the woman inside by pulling her out feet first, thereby saving her life. What woman would object to being grabbed by her ankles in that scenario?
In Trump’s own words, everything written about him in the “The New York Times and the Washington Post has been so false and angry that the Times actually apologized to its dwindling subscribers and readers”. Had that claim been true, The Times would have published an abject apology in its daily error section. The NY Times sends daily print and online corrections to the growing millions of its international subscribers and readers. It’s known all over the world for its perfect manners and prompt apologies. The two operative words in the Trump lie are “dwindling” and “apology”. Circulation of both newspapers is exponentially increasing. What might seem false and angry to the president is only incredible and terrifying. If he’d chosen those terms, he’d be telling the truth.
If Trump, using his extraordinary negotiating ability, could save “billions and billions of dollars” on a Defense Department order of F-35 fighter planes, a thrilled Secretary of the Department would announce that astonishing fact, and publicly thank him. Even when the discount was reduced to a less remarkable 750 million in savings, they would have been grateful. Trump continually repeats his imaginary triumph, as if Lockheed-Martin had offered him a buy-one; get-ten-free special on those F-35 fighters. By his twelfth repetition, the amazing deal has escalated to 2,500 planes, making it not only less magical but completely untrue. Any and all of those savings had been arranged during the Obama administration; happening before Trump took office, turning his lie into a typo. He’ll blame an overworked copy editor.
If “Obamacare really covered very few people and remember, deduct from the number all of the people that had great health care that they loved that was taken away,” then why did sixteen million people rush to sign up for the ACA in the tiny window of time while health care is still available to them? The one hundred sixteen million Americans registered for Medicare, Medicaid and the Child Health Insurance Program are about a third of the entire population. That’s hardly anyone to him. No wonder he keeps saying Believe me.
Everyone will have a personal favorite Trump lie, but one certain to be on every popular list is “I’ve accomplished more in 10 months than any other president ever”. To whom he referring? There are various five-person choice of those with the lowest total of accomplishments; Herbert Hoover, Warren Harding, Chester Arthur, Millard Fillmore and John Tyler. Though William Henry Harrison sometimes appears on the lists, that’s unfair, because he died of pneumonia after only a month in office. Will America ever be able to offer Trump position five on the non-accomplishment list? No one else has earned it so rapidly or dramatically. There are also lists of the worst presidents. So far, only Warren Harding turns up on both the forgettable list and the list of the worst. We can do better, though the forgettable part might be difficult.
Just in case the weeks before and after the holiday season may be slow news days with fewer presidential photo-ops than usual, it’s rumored that Trump is reviving his belief that Obama was not born in the United States. After all, that was one of his first and best lies. He couldn’t just let it die, useless and unappreciated. He’s clearly sorry he ever agreed to give it up. Apparently the Birther myth wasn’t dead; merely hibernating until needed for distracting the public from major issues like health care, taxes, and nuclear war. Among the bolstering possibilities for this theory is the notion that Hawaii temporarily dropped out of the union for a week or so in 1961, telling no one but giving Obama’s mother the chance to have a baby somewhere else and have the birth certificate FedExed to Hawaii. No, wait! FedEx wasn’t founded until 1971, when Obama would be ten. The Birthers can’t use that. But making him foreign? There’s DHL, but that would mean the birth certificate would still be 8 years late. Never mind. If expert forgers can fake a 500 year-old masterpiece, a mere 57-year old birth certificate should be no problem at all for Trump, just a great, great Christmas gift to the United States.
A journalist and playwright, Elaine’s books of American cultural history were published by Little, Brown, Putnam and Capra; her plays by Samuel French, Smith & Kraus and Art Age. Musical plays are An American Cantata; The Would-be Diva; Isadora! and COLE and WILL: Together Again! Non-musical dramas are The Chameleon; Two Margarets; The Trial of Mata Hari and The Nominee. The “I” Word; Gun Show Follies and Secrets of the Showroom are short comedies. She has written for many national magazines; The New York Times and the LA Times. Current articles appear monthly in the aptly-named online journal The Satirist.
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