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OpEdNews Op Eds    H4'ed 1/25/17

The Standing Ovation that Wasn't

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Message Michael Galli

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During his stream of consciousness speech delivered in the lobby of the CIA's Original Headquarters, President Trump told his audience that "God looked down and he said, we're not going to let it rain on your speech." He then proclaimed:

The first line, I got hit by a couple of drops. And I said, oh, this is too bad, but we'll go right through it. But the truth is that it stopped immediately. It was amazing. And then it became really sunny.1

Unlike Trump, I have no way of knowing what God said, of even if there is a God, but I do know his claim that it "became really sunny" after his speech is false, if that word still means anything.

In his first briefing for the President, press secretary Sean Spicer excoriated reporters for "sowing false narratives" while propagating one of his own. In order to prove that his boss is loved by the CIA, Spicer gushed, "The employees were ecstatic that he's the new Commander-in-Chief " They gave him a five-minute standing ovation." 2

Due to the fact that Spicer allowed no questions following his remarks, the press can be excused for not exposing his deception. The next day however, not one of the sixty-plus reporters gathered in the Brady Room challenged Spicer's repeated claim that Trump "walked into the CIA, people were hooting and hollering, they gave him a five minute standing ovation." 3 Nor did This Week's host George Stephanopoulos correct Trump's Propaganda Chief Kellyanne Conway when she repeated the lie that Trump's CIA visit garnered "a standing ovation." 4

Clapping while standing is not the same thing as a standing ovation, something that requires one to rise from a seated position during an applause to demonstrate exceptional approval. This never happened at the CIA. The audience was already standing when Trump entered the room, and remained standing until he left it.5 To conflate this with a standing ovation makes about as much sense as calling a woman obese because she's nine months pregnant.

While the press called out Spicer and Conway on other lies peddled after Trump's visit to the CIA, when it came to the ovation lie, it failed to notice that the Emperor was buck naked.


1. Trump CIA speech transcript:

2. Transcript of White House press secretary statement to the media:

3. White House briefing by Sean Spicer -- full transcript, Jan. 23, 2107:

4. 'This Week' Transcript 1-22-17: Kellyanne Conway, Sen. John McCain, and Sen. Chuck Schumer: 5. President Donald Trump Delivers Remarks at CIA Headquarters:
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Michael Galli is the Dean of Students at Rivendell Academy, a small 7-12 interstate public school on the New Hampshire / Vermont border, where he teaches classes on media and U.S. foreign policy.

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