Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Another One: Just Add It To The List

It's time to Break It Down!

According to the Washington Post, by August 12, 2019, Donald Trump had made more than 12K false and misleading claims. Mr. Trump’s aversion to veracity is so legendary that a number of media outlets have shied away from calling them lies, but rather, false and misleading claims. That’s impressive in and of itself, in a perverse sort of way.

I’ll make this short and sweet. A couple of days ago, we were reminded, once again, of the preferred Trumpian communications style. Long ago, Trump himself, was apparently so enamored with his proficiency at dissembling that he gave the practice his own very special appellation. In a 1987 book that he authored, I won’t promote it for him today, he called it truthful hyperbole. About the phenomenon, Trump is quoted in the book as saying, “I play to people’s fantasies… People want to believe that something is the biggest and the greatest and the most spectacular. I call it truthful hyperbole. It’s an innocent form of exaggeration.”

Even as a private businessman, it’s questionable whether Trump’s exaggerations were innocent. They were almost certainly not harmless. His business practices, including truthful hyperbole contributed to numerous lawsuits, claims, and even bankruptcies. Many of his erstwhile employees reported they we underpaid, or not paid at all, stemming from his deceptions. 

With such a predicate, it is no surprise Trump would claim President Obama wiretapped him, or that the FBI’s Russia probe was a function of deep statists, never-Trumpers, and people trying to overthrow a duly elected government. In part due to Trump’s claims, and at the direction of Attorney General William Barr, the FBI’s Inspector General Michael Horowitz opened a probe last year, that resulted in his team conducting over 100 interviews, and reviewing more than a million documents.

To quickly summarize, the investigation found clear fault, detailing 17 omissions and inaccuracies deemed to be significant in the Carter Page FISA applications. While he recommended rules changes, it is noteworthy, the report concluded the FBI followed existing rules. It also concluded there was sufficient evidence to prompt the investigation, and that the FBI acted properly in doing so, and that Obama and the FBI did not spy on Trump’s campaign.

Count me at the front of the line of people neither shocked nor surprised by this. It’s just “Another One: Add It To The List.”

I’m done; holla back!

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