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OpEdNews Op Eds    H1'ed 3/28/16

How to Short-circuit Trump's Lying Noise Machine

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Swamped as we are with ear-splitting humbuggery, who'd think a pugnacious, misinformed lightweight like Donald Trump would stand out? Not that it didn't take decades for his infantile celebrity schtick (being rich = being great at everything) to corral collective suckers. How can Trumpettes "think" he's a "straight-shooter who tells the truth"? Obviously, neither Trump nor his noise-making fans know the appalling legacy of America Firstism, this weekend's Know-nothing foreign policy default.

That Trump, whose singular "greatness" is being our greatest public liar, recklessly slams all "enemies" as "the worst liars" imaginable -- that feat explodes irony with the same force by which the Donald nukes the truth. Are there no ready cures for this steroidal Pinocchio? In fact, Trump is a demonstrably inept, gratuitous liar and self-defeating loudmouth: having already captured all the backward males, his misogynistic litany offends women by the millions without electoral offset. Did he not lose far more than he gained by needlessly denying McCain's heroism? Or demonizing all foreigners as virtual bad guys?

The way to defeat Trump, and his empty, reality-denying statements beyond disproof, is to pulverize his primitive magical show, a fake storyline in which reason gasps for breath. You can't argue directly with sneaky non-statements, nor win by throwing mud at an expert slime slinger. Instead, let's deconstruct the groundless Trump worldview, then cement the consistent lies to the unholy source and his ultimate bottom-line: remorseless self-promotion.

Trump doesn't really target real-world opponents, just uses them all to disdain reality. He finds plausible openings (like gross campaign funding), then reduces the entire exchange to bribery (pleading guilty as charged), as if all politicians are rote, knee-jerk puppets. Politicians in fact take money from players with contrary needs and objectives; while money buys access, what donor figures he's buying every specific vote of every recipient?

Disproving Trumpism is not that different from disproving historic, global delusions, like an earth-centered solar system, disease caused by four humors (thus bloodletting works), that human evolution is not about Nature, that what our naked eyes see is all that exists, or that religious metaphors (like Eden, Original Sin, salvation) are literally true. Such mental shifts begin by pinpointing innate self-contradictions, non sequiturs and logical fallacies, let alone with Trump indefensible, gratuitous lying.

Undermine Mindset, Implode Narrative

The assault must focus on source (the con man), context (infinitely complex presidency) and motivation (perpetual narcissism owing to Trump's Attention Deficit Disorder). You can't readily dispel with logic a storyline that comes without evidence (Jeb is low energy, immigrants are rapists, the country is practically done for). But showing these are biased fables is a first step. One counters Trump's hustling lies with adult storylines that answer to complexity PLUS exposing his character flaws, using outrage only to divide and conquer, spouting racism, violence, misogyny, and the totality Paul Krugman calls "invincible ignorance." Personal attacks (his divorces, bankruptcies, money-grubbing practices) won't work because Trump will then muddy the water with a flood of folly.

Trump doesn't simply misrepresent reality (as if assuming something confirmable is "out there") but pathologically invents phony storylines, wrapped with plausible beginnings, middles and ends. That's what makes him a better story-teller/entertainer than imperious opponents like Ted Cruz, or heroic reformers like Bernie Sanders (too many gnomic declarations, not enough informed stories). Trump's con first spotlights the self-evident (terrorists can bomb anywhere or immigrants begin as foreigners), then inserts infantile play logic (let's just wall off all bad guys), then caps perversity with an impossible promise (ban all Muslim travelers; build physical barriers, make American great by indicting interlopers). This sequence from a crackpot who rails about porous borders, then bizarrely assumes skilled terrorists wouldn't laugh at border agents holding Stop signs.

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For a decade, Robert S. Becker's rebel-rousing essays on politics and culture analyze overall trends, messaging and frameworks, now featured author at OpEdNews, Nation of Change and RSN. He appears regularly at Dissident Voice, with credits (more...)

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