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Just How Easy is it to Fool the Public?

 

Do you know what Donald Trump’s greatest talent is?  Deception.  An endlessly dishonest man (cheated on every wife; has cheated in every business venture undertaken, win or lose; cheats on his taxes, cheats in politics, cheats and cheats and lies and lies and lies), somehow he has convinced millions of people to be loyal to him and that somehow he is the only one telling the truth.  I mean, that is remarkable.  As a fan of both real world and literary villains (if not their deeds, than at least of their fascinating characters), Donald Trump is the sort of figure that history will never discard, no matter how many different and divergent interpretations over and underwhelm him in the future.

 

This will be brief today because my family and I have plans this afternoon, so I wish to only zero in on one example and play it for all that it’s worth.  It’s one of the big news stories today (and Donald Trump is capable of inserting a handful of them every day in order to break up the interest and keep everyone roving and distracted and disinterested and convinced that everything is a lie).  Here is one of the headlines:

US formally withdraws from nuclear treaty with Russia and prepares to test new missile

The facts of this include: “‘Russia is solely responsible for the treaty’s demise,'” Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in a statement Friday announcing the US’ formal withdrawal from the Cold-War era nuclear treaty.”  Pompeo backed this up with “Russia failed to return to full and verified compliance through the destruction of its noncompliant missile system.”

 

These blathering words are mostly meaningless, of course.  Scripts prepared in advance for the press.  If you were to turn on the news–right now, anywhere, any station, nearly anywhere in the world!–it would not be long before your hear a slanted-one-way-or-the-other commentary on this story.  But that’s all it is, really, isn’t it?  A story.  Meaningless anyway in this age of ignored and broken treaties.  Donald Trump does not care about earlier agreements that were meant to maintain peace in a hostile world.  I do not think he is even considering whether he could “make a better deal.”  He does not care at all.  Peace, safety, security for the nation he is presumably meant to protect–not good for business.  If we hear about him or his family buying up most of the fresh water reserves in the nation, get ready for the post-apocalypse, survivors.

 

Do not think that I am going so far as to proclaim this yet another stage of “Russian collusion” in some conspiratorial manner (yet remember, Trump himself is a true conspiracy theorist, everything in his purview some gargantuan plot; the way that conspiracy theorists view history is through the lens of their frequent delusions mixed in with a few bare boned nuggets of truth which inspire such ideas.  See A. Ralph Epperson’s The Unseen Hand: https://www.abebooks.com/servlet/SearchResults?isbn=9780961413507&n=100121503&cm_sp=mbc-_-ISBN-_-used for a fascinating discussion and justification of outrageous plots purported to have been brewing since long before the first life crawled out of the slime).  No, Donald Trump is loyal to no one, to nothing.  All he sees in condemning Russia in this brief and pointless manner is that the 2020 election is getting close and he thinks he needs to take a hard-line against them in order to keep the circling buzzards getting closer and closer to whatever unexpected truth he is actually covering up.  He is distracting, once again, much of the public from the much smaller, greasier, greedy and selfish motives behind his cheap, power-hungry crimes.  Go look on Twitter, on Facebook, on any of the other social media sites that feature people arguing nonsense based exclusively on partisan lines, without the slogging frustration of evaluating reality, and see what people are alleging: “This proves that the treasonous liberals are still crying about Crooked Hillary,” and “Putin’s little bitch is just doing what he’s told.”  Neither of these statements are true.

 

The right-wing jackass has no idea what they are talking about.  Somehow they see this through the lens of Democratic Socialism (or Communism, or whatever other buzzword for evil being dredged up from the past), and the overly emotional weakness both extreme sides suffer from, without understanding anything about any form of political ideology, including the one they nominally throw in with.  What the douchebags on the left are really doing is diminishing the true awfulness of the implications of such a momentary international break down.  What yet another broken treaty means is that, slightly more than before (and this seems to be Trump’s ultimate goal), every nation is isolated, in it exclusively for themselves.  Sure, Trump sees scheming Russians potentially further debasing our social order again, but he neither engineered this the first time around, nor cared that it was being done.  Yes, he benefitted.  But I agree that there was “no collusion.”  One cannot collude with indifference.  No, there was only outright corruption and, should anyone bother to go back to the US Constitution, there we can find the actual treason, a betrayal of the nation itself in favor of only himself.

 

Donald Trump cares about nothing.  He does not even believe in the United States of America, for all the senseless bullshit to the contrary he sometimes spits out in order to rile up his blind nation of followers.  I am not necessarily calling these people stupid (although surely many of them are, just like the loud-mouthed conspiracy theorists on the left are pretty fucking dumb as well).  What I am saying is that we are easy to con.  We almost want to be tricked as to the meaning of reality.  It gives some semblance to our lives if we can identify a specific enemy we must fight against, even if that enemy is ourselves.  Such wars allow the truly corrupt to do whatever it is they want, and achieve whichever greedy goals they may have been planning since youth, those fantasies of childhood world domination being fulfilled.  And we are easily fooled, easily tricked, easily distracted.  We don’t even see reality coming upon us until it is far too late and we are forced to adapt our lifestyles to whatever lesser joy it eventually, constantly becomes.

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