Living Large In Carson City: America Ain’t Got Time for That

White House economic adviser: People don’t care about Trump corruption


When asked in an interview hosted by NPR’s Steve Inskeep on May 29 about the seemingly clear case of Donald Trump and his family profiting from doing the business of the country, Peter Navarro, director of the White House National Trade Council, was both a little perturbed and short with his answer.

I think it’s unfortunate when anybody takes the discussion in that direction,” Navarro said. “I think the American people would rather focus on how to stop China from taking the seed corn of our future prosperity, so that’s what I’m focused on. Can we stay on that, sir?

A little unfortunate? Maybe, but put that aside for the moment. I do agree with Navarro that it is important to focus on getting the best terms when negotiating trade deals with all the countries America does business with around the world. China needs to be held to a standard that benefits all parties as much as feasibly possible. We have a trade deficit with China, and it truly is a bad deal for the United States. It should be a priority to level the playing field where everyone prospers, and in the case of China, stops them for the irksome practice of stealing intellectual property from their trading partners.

Getting back to the “a little unfortunate” allusion, it is mind boggling how Trump sycophants sidestep questions about obvious greed-fueled corruption in the way these people do business. The article covering the NPR interview by Aaron Rupar of goes on to examine the controversy of the Chinese company ZTE that was hit with severe penalties for doing business with Iran and North Korea contrary to America’s sanctions on those countries.

When a Chinese state-owned construction company invested $500 million in a Trump- branded property in Indonesia, the Orange One suddenly became concerned with the high unemployment that the penalties on ZTE would create for the Chinese economy. In a bizarre turn the other cheek moment, Trump found it in his heart to forgive ZTE, despite a warning from one of his own newly installed cabinet members and the military that ZTE was a national security threat, but wait, it gets better.


PYEONGCHANG-GUN, SOUTH KOREA - FEBRUARY 25: Ivanka Trump attends the 4-man Boblseigh on day sixteen of the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympic Games at Olympic Sliding Centre on February 25, 2018 in Pyeongchang-gun, South Korea. Ivanka Trump is on a four-day visit to South Korea to attend the closing ceremony of the PyeongChang Winter Olympics. (Photo by Eric Gaillard-Pool/Getty Images)Getty Images

Tied into the mix is Trump’s daughter, Ivanka. Shortly, before Trump found it in his heart to forgive ZTE their transgressions, Ivanka secured seven trademark deals from the Chinese government that will undoubtedly line her pockets for years to come. She had already been awarded three trademarks after dining with the Chinese president last year. All toll, the young Ms. Trump has received 34 trademark deals since her dad took office. Now, maybe, just maybe, Ivanka is a skilled business woman and made these deals on her own. While she has supposedly put her business dealings on hold, it seems a little odd that the Chinese government is singling her out of all the businesses in the world to heap these golden eggs on her without regard to her father’s vaunted position in Chinese and America’s relationship.

But I digress . . .

My issue is with Navarro and his dismissal of concerns that the Trump clan is not acting on the up and up despite the appearance of something underhanded going on in the Trump administration. He may believe people really don’t care what the president does in his private businesses dealings, or as Rupar put it,

Navarro did not try and reassure people that Trump is actually acting in the national interest. Instead, he suggested that the question itself is offensive, and argued that people have more important things to worry about.

When I read that comment the first time, I actually gasped, and I am normally not a gasper. The sheer audacity of someone in Navarro’s position trying to turn the table on the American people and imply it is “offensive” to question, not just the Trumps, but any public official dealing in corrupt acts is anathema to all that is right and holy in this country.

Is this the new reality in America today where a cabal of rich white people are above the law? The list is endless from Scott Pruitt at the Environmental Protection Agency, an oxymoronic title under Pruitt’s watch, to Ryan Zinke at the Department of Interior, to Tom Price at Health and Human Services (fired), to Ben Carson at Housing and Urban Development, to Steven Mnuchin at Treasury (think solar eclipse escapade), to Mike Mulvaney director of Office and Budget (he’s the one who told lobbyists to pay to play), and on and on. These people don’t even reflect the worst of the worst (Okay maybe Pruitt does), but this leaves out Betsy DeVos and Wilbur Ross who have their own ethical challenges.

People don’t care about Trump’s corruption? I think they do. The only real issue of import to the American people, our democracy, and the integrity of the United States depends on driving these criminals out of office at the first chance the voting booths offers. What is offensive is that a member of the president’s entourage would have the balls to say something this offensive in public and think it was okay.

It’s not.

Living Large In Carson City: The World According to Donald Trump Edition


The constitutional crisis is here

Eugene Robinson

Stop waiting for the constitutional crisis that President Trump is sure to provoke. It’s here.

A constitutional crisis is brought about in a number of ways. It can happen when the federal and local governments come to an impasse on a topic with no constitutional solution that addresses the issue can be found. Additionally, it can happen when different people or groups within the society hold unresolvable stances not covered explicitly by the constitution, or most commonly, when two branches of the government are at odds over the power one branch holds over another.

In this case, of course, the current constitutional crisis is pretty clear cut. Does Trump have the power to use the Attorney General’s office as his personal tool to circumvent history, law, and of course, the constitution? The secession of the southern states that precipitated the Civil War is a classic example.

Yesterday, American’s found out that Donald Trump made good on his demand that he would force Assistant Attorney Rob Rosenstein and Christopher Wray to turn over sensitive documents, normally held in private to protect national interests and the people who would be vulnerable if said documents saw the light of day.

When American’s think about the presidency of Donald Trump, it is hard not to note the lies, graft, greed, ineptitude and total disregard for the laws and mores that are the basis for American society. Sure, Trump is beset by a growing probe that has the potential for bringing him down along with a cast of misfits, his family and close advisors, but no one should be fooled in thinking there is any substance to his claims about a “witch hunt” or the “deep state” or “the swamp” being at fault. Donald Trump is between a rock and a hard place of his own making. This is a fact he may never be able to comprehend and certainly not accept.

Robinson noted,

Trump’s power play is a gross misuse of his presidential authority and a dangerous departure from long-standing norms. Strongmen such as Russia’s Vladimir Putin use their justice systems to punish enemies and deflect attention from their own crimes. Presidents of the United States do not — or did not, until Sunday’s tweet:

“I hereby demand, and will do so officially tomorrow, that the Department of Justice look into whether or not the FBI/DOJ infiltrated or surveilled the Trump Campaign for Political Purposes — and if any such demands or requests were made by people within the Obama Administration!”

Trump’s demand is the equivalent of an angry child stomping their foot and demanding that their parents do their will or else. The one thing that a sane human being can take away from this is that something has the Orange One frightened and running scared. There seems to be little doubt Mueller is closing in, and a reckoning is coming regardless of what Trump and his cronies do or think. Never has there been a time in recent history for the American people to grow a backbone and stand up to Trump the bully and demand that truth and justice be served.

As of yesterday, this is no longer a partisan issue. This constitutional crisis affects everyone from the Republican Party (who have been shamefully reluctant to confront the president), the Democrats, liberals, conservatives, evangelicals, and yes, even the infamous “basket of deplorables” that have done so much to enable the president to bring America to the untenable situation we find ourselves in today. Speaking of the “basket of deplorables”, how can his base, in good conscience, support a man whose life, career and worldview is so antithetical to the American way of life and governance – to say nothing about the damage he is doing to the constitution and the office of the presidency?

Fear is a funny thing. It affects us all in different ways. Yet, here we see a third of the country so frightened of losing their privileged status that they are willing to support and defend someone who has not only lied to the other two-thirds of the country, but in the end, to them as well. The real question is how they will react if and when Trump is brought down on criminal charges and forced out of office. If that occurs, the current constitutional crisis will look tame compared to the confrontation that will come about if that comes to fruition.

Thomas Jefferson was if nothing else prescient and no fool when it comes to the folly of his fellow human beings. He saw firsthand the corrupt nature of those who would wrest control of government from the masses to concentrate their efforts to the benefit of the few. He once said,

(I)n questions of power, let no more be heard of confidence in man but bind him down from mischief by the chains of the constitution.

The American people should not kid themselves. The hounds are literally at the gate and little good can come from allowing Trump to make a mockery of the constitution and the American way of life with little regard for the consequences of his actions. It is time to face reality. Trump and his ilk are not like the vast majority of Americans. They are a self-centered, opportunistic and a threatening force that must be confronted and defeated. Without action, far worse is on the horizon. Forgive me for this, but as the popular television series, Game of Thrones, would say:

Winter is coming.



























Living Large In Carson City: America Ain’t Got Time For That Edition

Image result for images of a jester

This week has been a little frustrating, but fulfilling, as the week unfolded. We had guests who took up most of my waking hours. Consequently, I had to stand back and watch all manner of events, scandals, faux pas’, and the general chaos that our federal government has become under Donald Trump swagger by without comment. Still, I wanted to get something down on record, so I’ve selected several over the top stories that I just cannot let go of in light of their absurdity and poignancy they hold for the American people.

The first story was a Trump Tweet about the Santa Fe High School shooting on Friday. Just north of Galveston, Santa Fe could not be more in Trump’s radar if it was an entrant in the misogynistic Miss America contest. This is after all Trump country. The orange one Tweeted:

“My administration is determined to do everything in our power to protect our students, secure our schools and do everything we can to keep weapons out of the hands of those who pose a threat to themselves and to others,” Trump said during an event at the White House. “Everyone must work together at every level of government to keep our children safe.”

Yeah? How is that working out for you Donald? After the Parkland, Florida massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, you first seemed to stand up against the National Rifle Association while it was politically correct to do so. It didn’t take long for the NRA powers to yank your chain, and you flipflopped. The most you could come up with was to back the idiotic idea of training and arming school teachers as if they would be able to stop a crazed gunman when trained law enforcement officers could not.

He ends with this placid non-statement:

“We grieve for the terrible loss of life and send our support to everyone affected by this absolutely horrific attack,” he said. “To the students, families, teachers and personnel at Santa Fe High, we are with you at this tragic hour and we will be with you forever.”

The most redeeming element of this statement is that he didn’t send prayers for their pain and suffering. This man is the king of the sterilized comments which do little if anything to comfort or promote healing during these radically charged emotional times.

Red more here

Then there was that crazy guy white guy Congressman Mo Brooks (R-Alabama). Okay, no one ever accused Brooks of being the brightest bulb in the basket when it comes to climate change, but the shining light of Alabama’s 5th Congressional district truly out did himself this week. If Bill Nye is the Science Guy, Brooks is the Stone Age Guy.

Here is his contribution to solving the climate change crisis and rising sea levels that the world faces:

‘“Brooks then said that erosion plays a significant role in sea-level rise, which is not an idea embraced by mainstream climate researchers. He said the California coastline and the White Cliffs of Dover tumble into the sea every year, and that contributes to sea-level rise. He also said that silt washing into the ocean from the world’s major rivers, including the Mississippi, the Amazon and the Nile, is contributing to sea-level rise.

“Every time you have that soil or rock or whatever it is that is deposited into the seas, that forces the sea levels to rise, because now you have less space in those oceans, because the bottom is moving up,” Brooks said.

(Moderator) Duffy responded: “I’m pretty sure that on human time scales, those are minuscule effects.”’

The Daily Kos’ blog writer, Hunter, posited that Brooks should also look into boats and whales and how they also displace water, so they too could be a factor. Or most controversial, the Earth is shrinking and is to blame for the sea’s rise around the world. I am fairly certain Hunter was being rhetorical or maybe tongue in cheek. No one, after all, would belittle the august Congressman with trifle comments when his “rock theory” is so well constructed.

Read more here

The question I have on this next story and one all of America is asking: Is Rudy Giualiani high? It would be cruel and unwarranted to simply call Rudy an idiot. Yet, some of the things that comes out of his mouth are truly suspect. Pundits believe that Rudy was a great mayor and possibly a brilliant lawyer at one time, but one has to question why he seems to not understand the underlying issues that are swirling around Donald Trump’s White House these days. The foundation of the United States Constitution places everyone, lying, unscrupulous politicians as well, on an equal footing. Just because someone becomes president does not lift them above the masses and the rule of law. Here Rudy banters with Chris Cuomo on the elite nature of the American presidency, or at least in his mind.

GIULIANI: The president has complete discretion to fire anybody he wants.

CUOMO: What about corrupt intent?

GIULIANI: Doesn’t apply.

CUOMO: Why not?

GIULIANI: There’s no evidence of that.

CUOMO: You don’t think a president can obstruct justice?

GIULIANI: He can. But I think in the case of firing a subordinate who’s going to be replaced by somebody else on an acting basis immediately —

CUOMO: But it’s why you fired them. Corrupt intent. It’s part of the legal analysis.

GIULIANI: It doesn’t matter if in fact it can’t result in anything. The investigation continued. The investigation expanded.

Read More

And just for the fun of it, get a heaping helping of Giuliani metaphorically stomping his foot like a three-year-old child with their feelings hurt.

As Cuomo played the clip, an angered Giuliani screamed, “That’s really unfair. What you’re doing right now is extremely unfair. It’s the reason people don’t come on this show.

Uh, Rudy, you are on the show. See the earlier question about the possibility of his being high.

Read more

Then there is this from the bigoted Hobby Lobby saga that simply won’t go away. Enter Brian Spurlock who returned a circuit cutter to Hobby Lobby for his girlfriend. Armed with the cutter, sales slip and original packaging, Spurlock set about his errand with little more to worry about other than having to deal with the often tediousness task of returning merchandise to a chain store. The first clerk he encountered asked him to step out of line while the clerk went to clear the transaction with his manager.  Here is what happened next:

The cashier returned to Spurlock and told him the manager was calling the store’s corporate office, as if Hobby Lobby has a staff of operators on standby waiting to approve trinket returns. The manager asked Spurlock to step aside and wait while she called Hobby Lobby’s Cricut Emergency Return Squad.

The manager called the police instead. According to the police, the manager thought Spurlock looked like someone who had been returning stolen items to their store.

The police arrived and asked Spurlock for his identification papers. Spurlock was still in the dark thinking checking ID was normal procedure. The cop ran his ID and found nothing. He returned and told Spurlock when he got his refund to immediately leave the store, or he would be charged with trespassing. Huh? Another article stated that Hobby Lobby also accused Spurlock of talking to loudly outside the store.

So, in the course of a few minutes, a seemingly upstanding customer was accused of being “someone” who looked like a mysterious person who returned stolen goods for money, trespassing and finally talking too loud in the parking lot.

The one offense left out of the equation was “returning merchandise while black”. This is one of the most disturbing trends in America today; white people so afraid of anyone that isn’t like them calling the police for no reason but to intimidate and harass people only for the color of their skin.

The Hobby Lobby manager’s response to Spurlock query on why the police were called?

 “We were only following orders from our upper management.”


Read More

Living Large In Carson City: The I Don’t Want To Hurt You, but . . . Edition

Answer the Question: Is Torture Immoral?


Gina, Gina, Gina . . .
This an easy one. Yes, torture is immoral. Say it with me Gina, “Torture is immoral.” There, feel better? I know I do. Really, though, Americans know that you don’t think it is immoral or even inhumane. After all, if you thought it was inhumane, you wouldn’t have tortured in the first place.

Many Americans don’t know that torture is an international crime and has been since 1987 when the United Nations Convention against Torture took effect. The idea behind the prohibition of torture is pretty straightforward. Don’t do to your enemy what you wouldn’t want done to you. Sounds a lot like the Golden Rule, yes? For people like Haspel, however, the ends justify the means. What’s a little session of waterboarding’s harm in the big picture? And therein lies the rub. How can the big picture become clearer if the person being tortured will say just about anything to get the torture stopped?

Caveat: I began this blurb shortly after Haspel first confirmation interview ended. Admittedly, anyone watching her responses, not just about the morality of torture, but how she would conduct her duties came away a little puzzled as to exactly what she would or wouldn’t do as director of the CIA. Stonewalling was one word that was used by a variety of news sources in their description of Haspel’s lack of clarity in her answers.

One interview I watched, however, made me think. It was on Jake Tapper’s show with a panel enclosed to discuss Haspel’s performance as the director of a black ops site, and her future as the director. Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) had just finished an interview with Tapper and had little good to say about Haspel’s performance as to how she would conduct herself as CIA director if she was confirmed. To be clear, Harris asked three yes/no questions to which Haspel obfuscated to say the least. The first question, “Do you think torture is immoral?”, the CIA director wannabe’ could not deliver the simple yes/answer Harris expected. The upshot was Harris came away from the meeting saying she would not vote for Haspel’s confirmation, citing Haspel’s inability to answer the questions in a straightforward manner coupled other classified details that came to light in the closed-door session that preceded the public setting.

On the panel was former CIA Counterterrorism Official, Phil Mudd. In the past I’ve always liked Mudd. He is a loose cannon cowboy who often surprises news moderators by his passionate, and sometimes, potty mouth retorts. Often, he is a breath of fresh air when paired with ideologically inclined guests who toe the party line. In his response Mudd didn’t disappoint on one hand but also wandered into La La land on the other.

Mudd states he was a part of the Congressional hearings into the use of Enhanced Interrogation Techniques (EITs) fifteen years ago. He noted that Harris could vote however she liked, but what he objected to was the “collective amnesia” that Harris and others seem to be suffering from on the topic. Essentially, his contention is the torture techniques that were used were condoned by the Justice Department, President Bush and a host of lawyers who claimed the techniques were legal.

In his view since the torture techniques used were sanctioned by the government, the interrogators were not the torturers, but the United States as a whole. Since Americans elected a president who appointed an Attorney General who said the techniques were legal, voila, it was America’s responsibility, and not in this case Haspel’s problem. She was just following orders.

The Attorney General at the time was Alberto Gonzalez, America’s first Hispanic AG. He was also Bush’s lap dog who acted as little more than a rubber stamp for anything Bush threw his way. The biggest cheerleader for using torture was not Bush or Gonzalez, however, but Dick Cheney, the Darth Vader of American politics.

In an interview with Chuck Todd on Meet the Press, Todd asked the vice-president if he condoned the past use of torture and how did he justify the torture of innocent people.

25% of the detainees though, 25% turned out to be innocent. They were released.
Where are you going to draw the line, Chuck? How are–
Well, I’m asking you.
–you going to know?
Is that too high? You’re okay with that margin for error?
I have no problem as long as we achieve our objective. And our objective is to get the guys who did 9/11 and it is to avoid another attack against the United States. I was prepared and we did. We got authorizing from the president and authorization from the Justice Department to go forward with the program. It worked. It worked now for 13 years.
We’ve avoided another mass casualty attack against the United States. And we did capture Bin Laden. We did capture an awful lot of the senior guys at Al Qaeda who were responsible for that attack on 9/11. I’d do it again in a minute.

An AG willing to condone anything his president asks and a psychopathic would-be killer vice-president do not American policy make, or at least, it certainly leaves the topic up for debate. Mudd’s contention is that since torture was deemed legal then it was policy. Policy that Haspel carried out with all too much relish if her detractors can be believed.

So, in the end, the question is not whether or not Haspel tortured. She did. The real question is would she do it again. She says no, but if confronted with another 911 scenario, how long would she continue to say no. The answer is not long.

Some of us remember the infamous Milgram’s Experiment on Obedience to Authority. Author Gregorio Billikopf Encina tells how Social Psychologist Stanley Milgram devised the experience to determine the effect of authority on obedience. Milgram set up an experiment where random people were asked to participate as either students or teachers. In reality, all of the participants were teachers. The parts of students were played by paid actors. Teachers were given a list of questions they were required to ask students. If students gave wrong answers (as actors they gave plenty), the teacher had the option of administering a jolt of electricity to the student between 75 and 450 volts. The students didn’t actually receive shocks but faked their reactions for the benefit of the teacher.

According to Encina, the results were somewhat unsettling,

Milgram’s experiment included a number of variations. In one, the learner was not only visible but teachers were asked to force the learner’s hand to the shock plate so they could deliver the punishment. Less obedience was extracted from subjects in this case. In another variation, teachers were instructed to apply whatever voltage they desired to incorrect answers. Teachers averaged 83 volts, and only 2.5 percent of participants used the full 450 volts available. This shows most participants were good, average people, not evil individuals. They obeyed only under coercion.

In general, more submission was elicited from “teachers” when (1) the authority figure was in close proximity; (2) teachers felt they could pass on responsibility to others; and (3) experiments took place under the auspices of a respected organization.

How does this play into Haspel’s penchant for torture? Encina notes Miligram found that in the face of authority, people were more likely to comply and shock the students who gave wrong answers or refused to shock the student for wrong answers. Miligram found,

Milgram divided participants into three categories:

Obeyed but justified themselves. Some obedient participants gave up responsibility for their actions, blaming the experimenter. If anything had happened to the learner, they reasoned, it would have been the experimenter’s fault. Others had transferred the blame to the learner: “He was so stupid and stubborn he deserved to be shocked.”

Obeyed but blamed themselves. Others felt badly about what they had done and were quite harsh on themselves. Members of this group would, perhaps, be more likely to challenge authority if confronted with a similar situation in the future.

Rebelled. Finally, rebellious subjects questioned the authority of the experimenter and argued there was a greater ethical imperative calling for the protection of the learner over the needs of the experimenter. Some of these individuals felt they were accountable to a higher authority.

Miligrams findings bode darkly for Haspel and whether she would again condone torture, her assurances to the contrary, if pressure from an authority demanded it, and we all know Trump has made clear he would support, even demand, torture.

Or as Encina wrote,

Why were those who challenged authority in the minority? So entrenched is obedience it may void personal codes of conduct.

Good luck on that one America.

Living Large in Carson City: Christine McVie Said It Best: “Tell Me Lies/Sweet Little Lies” Edition

Mark Twain, considering his legendary gift of storytelling, knew full well that “the lie” was as important as the truth in certain circumstances. In his satirical essay, On The Decay Of The Art Of Lying, he is both celebrating and bemoaning the right of individuals to lie when circumstances call for it. In his opinion lying was a pedestrian art form; an ad hoc means of pushing a conversation down the road . . . hopefully in the direction the liar intended for it to go. As he saw it, in a perfect world, lying was a means of softening reality, thereby, taking the edge off of the truth to protect those one met during the course of any day.

However, even for Twain, lying had taken on a cynical, corrosive nature that was too commonly used in ways that stepped over a line into a malignant creation that left behind the beauty of the lie when used correctly in polite society.  In another piece he wrote,

Anybody can tell lies: there is no merit in a mere lie, it must possess art, it must exhibit a splendid & plausible & convincing probability; that is to say, it must be powerfully calculated to deceive.  “The Ashcroft-Lyon Manuscript.”

In full disclosure, I find Twain’s satire about lying hard to square with the utterances that come out of Donald Trump’s mouth. I think Twain would find Trump a “special” case when it came to untruths, their utility, impact and just the preponderance of miss information that can be attributed to the 45th president’s verbal gymnastics. Only the most deluded, partisan blind (and deaf) followers can say with a straight face that Trump is a truth teller.

Whether its Trump himself or Sarah Huckabee Sanders, Don, Jr., Eric, Scott Pruitt or any number of other Trump sycophants doing the lying, no one can deny that the Trump White House is awash with untruths and falsity beyond what anyone has seen in the past. Our president lies on command, and in so doing, allows his troops his tacit approval of following suit. It’s all a part of the clown act that is the Trump administration.

Speaking of clowns, this video takes lying to a whole different level, or rather, the calling out liars, be it the president or those close to him.

They (journalists) take the next step . . . just present the facts. . .The journalists shouldn’t be the one to say the president or his spokesperson is lying . . .

Schlapp goes on to say what this does is it alienates 50 percent of the population and makes them feel like they aren’t credible anymore. How does that work? First of all, if the president or his spokesperson is a bald-faced liar like Trump often is, then facts are not the issue. It’s the lie that journalists seize upon. They are not the ones telling untruths. And how can 50 percent of America think they are not credible any longer because someone points out, “Uh, Mr. President, that is a lie?” Schlapp seems to be referring to Trump supporters. “Oh, sorry 50 percenters, your guy lied, so your lives are worthless?”

And what about his comment that journalists should just present the facts and let the American people make up their own minds. Huh? If the statements in question are lies, they aren’t facts. I think what Schlapp’s real objective here is to say that journalists should not call out the president on lies, thereby making them public record. This allows the 50 percenters to swallow everything Trump says without having the nasty experience of hearing that their orange idol just told a fib, or in most cases, a whopper.

The real issue here is not the lying end of the equation. It is the fact that Trump has a problem with the truth. Twain was no idiot. He understood the expediency of lying to avoid causing harm to another. Yet, his satirical lament about lying underscored the plain fact that the truth is the basis of all interaction in the world whether it be between husbands and wives, the police and the accused or the interaction between a politician and their supporters. Twain spoke of the truth in On The Decay Of The Art Of Lying. He “quotes” an old proverb that states,

Children and fools always speak the truth.

There is some debate dating back to the 14th century as to what this really means. On one level, it implies that children and fools speak the truth while not knowing the implications of how the truth will be received. Any husband understands this implicitly, “Honey, does this dress my ass look fat?” Depending on the individual circumstances, or not, the only answer to this is no, whether it is a lie or not. Children and fools in their naivety see the truth in an unvarnished way. It’s the truth. How can it hurt?

Trump, however, doesn’t make the connection to the truth and a lie. What he says at any particular moment is what’s on his mind. He uses lies to shape his follower’s minds into believing that he has the answers to all of their desires. Schlapp’s attempt to call into question journalist’s motivations about calling Trump and his followers on their lies falls a little flat. Even the Bible addresses this in John 8:32, “And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”

But to Trump, what does this debate matter? He is a con artist that has no moral or ethical center to filter his thoughts through. Trump will say whatever comes to his mind to gain the upper hand. The larger concern is that his supporters know he is lying and simply don’t care. Let’s be honest. Trump will be gone and forgotten soon enough. The problem is the damage his lies do will be around a lot longer than his orange charisma. The harm  lies in how his supporters and the false empowerment it gives them will dictate how they go forward.

FYI: 3000 lies