Monday, November 28, 2016

Stupid Lies


The difference between the two candidates for office is still visible, as is the problem with "President Trump" that remains and is deeply troubling.
 
What Trump says about the election results:
 
"In addition to winning the Electoral College in a landslide, I won the popular vote if you deduct the millions of people who voted illegally."
 
He made a specific and enumerated fact claim, that "millions" of people voted illegally.
 
1. There is zero evidence for this.
2. Trump has zero evidence for this.
3. Knowing that there is zero evidence for it, he made the claim anyway.
 
This is the exact sort of casual lying that should disqualify Trump from office. He has constantly and demonstrably made ridiculously false claim after absurd fact claim. Claims that are not supported by data. There are not just lies, they are stupid lies. They insult our intelligence, or should.
 
This is a problem and now it is our nation's problem. It's a problem because now, each and every time that "President Trump" makes a claim, we are obliged to treat it as a possible lie. If he claims that we "need" to bomb a city, how do we know we actually "need" to do so? Because so much of what he has said has been a stupidly false claim, we are obliged to treat everything he says as a false claim. We can't trust our own president (moreso than even normally!). The world can't trust the US.
 
This is why he should never have been elected in the first place.
 
THAT is what Trump says.
 
What the Green Party and Democrats/Clinton have said about the election, on the other hand:
From CNN:
 
"Wisconsin Green Party co-chairman George Martin said the party is seeking a "reconciliation of paper records" -- a request that could go further than a simple recount, possibly spurring an investigation into the integrity of Wisconsin's voting system. "This is a process, a first step to examine whether our electoral democracy is working," Martin said.
 
Both the Clinton campaign and the White House have said they see no evidence that any voting systems were hacked, although the Clinton campaign said Saturday it will take part in the recounts, joining with Stein, to ensure the recount is "fair to all sides.""
 
So, you can see, there are no irrational and sweeping false claims. There is a concern raised and, even though there appears to be no obvious hacking, because of concerns raised, they'd like to have a check to verify that the system is working.
 
That is how rational adults talk. That is how serious presidential contenders review data and make conclusions and act.
 
"Millions cheated!"
"Nu-uh! I'm not! YOU'RE a puppet!!"
"Crooked Hillary!" "Lyin' Ted!"
"I grab them by the p$%#y... I can't help myself."
 
This is how an ill-mannered, bullying, possibly mentally disturbed grade-school student talks.
 
He remains unfit for office.
 
One take-away from this, at least for now, is that all good citizens are obliged to treat each and every Trump claim as potentially false and in need of verification by responsible and moral adults.

26 comments:

Marshall Art said...

Wow! You're actually that desperate, to wet yourself over hyperbole. "Landslide" is a rather subjective term. I personally don't regard his EC win as a landslide at all. I personally don't care that he does, even while noting his saying so is ludicrous. But it's not exactly, "If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor" or "He just wants to help the rich". Good gosh!

Anonymous said...

He makes repeated fact claims. IF you are suggesting that all of them are hyperbole, please let me know and we know to NEVER trust any fact claims he makes, because they are not fact claims at all.

If you are saying only some of them are hyperbole, then let us know how we can know when he's engaging in hyperbole and when he's not, and what demonstrable method you have to objectively "know" when he's not being literal.

Absent some criteria for knowing when he's lying/engaging in "hyperbole," then again, we have to treat each claim he makes as not factual, or at least skeptical.

This isn't desperate. It's a reasonable attempt to demonstrate that he's an unreasonable leader, given his penchant for what you generously call hyperbole, but to a more objective person, seems to be flatly false claims.

~Dan

Marshall Art said...

Again, "If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor". Then there's that "ducking sniper fire in Bosnia" claim, or the "I'm named after the guy who climbed Mt. Everest after I was born" claim, or any number of claims from the current president, or the woman who hoped to succeed him that are no more than BS. But YOU believe Trump is unreliable because he speaks without a filter. You're incredible.

Craig said...

MA,

This tendency of Trump to go off half cocked and spew out whatever the first thing that pops into his mind is one of the things that first soured me on him as a candidate.

I find it interesting that at one point, Dan made the reasonable and accurate point that we have reached the point in our political history where we actually expect politicians to lie and that to some degree or another make excuses to cover their lies. As you pointed out, P-BO told some whoppers. Hillary too. My favorite was the one where she testified that she had her illegal private e mail server so she didn't have to carry multiple devices around, then panders to a bunch of Apple folks that "Of course she has an iPhone" (or words to that effect)(speaking of stupid lies/perjury). We could go on and on, we could argue if some of the "lies" are more accurately termed mistakes, but that doesn't change the validity of Dan's point.

Personally, I can't get past the irony of the "There's no voter fraud." crowd trying to blame voter fraud for the failure of their candidate to win. It's also kind of ironic, that the recount has actually added Trump votes.

Anonymous said...

It's a fact that Trump is unreliable because he lies most of the time. It's objectively measurable.

What's interesting is why supposedly moral people will give a pass to his unrelenting false claims. It makes it hard to believe they're actually concerned about the relatively miniscule false claims of others.

Dan

Craig said...

Yes, it's frustrating when "relatively moral" people (with no objective standard of morality) give a pass to people's false claims. Also when people's expectations are so low as to presume that all politicians lie and it's simply a matter of excusing some lies while criticizing others.

Anonymous said...

I, for one, have never given any passes for false claims. I just recognize that all people and all politicians do lie to some degree or another. To measure it, Clinton made false/misleading statements something like 22% of the time, so did Sanders, depending on the measure. The various GOP candidates this time around made false claims in the 30-40% of the time range.

And then there was Trump, who made false claims like they were candy. Who made false claims something like 70-90% of the time.

And the GOP embraces him for whatever hellish reason.

I, for one, recognize the difference between having a lie rate of ~25% of the time vs a lie rate of +<80% of the time.

The question is why would moral people malign and degrade the person who makes false claims ~25% of the time while voting for the person who did so nearly all the time?

The question is, why would INTELLIGENT people vote for someone who makes false claims nearly all the time and think they could reasonably trust him to do ANYTHING that he said?

I don't have the answer for that.

But speaking for me and mine, I have never given a pass for false claims. I just try to balance the harm and recognize the reality of it and seek to find someone who is relatively trustworthy.

It's not a matter of excusing some lies and criticizing others (that, in itself, is a false claim! ironically for those not immune to irony). It's a matter of general trustworthiness.

If trustworthiness is a goal and Candidate A has a lie rate of 25% and Candidate T has a lie rate of ~90%, then the choice is clear.

Recognizing that reality is not giving a pass. It's choosing the more reasonable option.

~Dan

Marshall Art said...

Of course, one must put one's trust in the source that counted the falsehoods and was honest enough to accurately label them as such. Again, some of the falsehoods of Trump are no more than examples of hyperbole and exaggeration. While not something one would wish in a politician, and certainly not a president, to get worked up about such as if it is akin to the far more serious lies of his opponent and predecessor reeks of dishonesty to me.

It's also very important to remember that a lie is a falsehood intentionally told. Yet Dan chose two example that do not necessarily qualify under that definition (conceding that Dan will likely again have a different definition...this time for the word "lie"). Let's start with the first:

1. Is there some official number that whereby the term "landslide" can justifiably be applied? If not, and I don't believe I've ever heard such a number, then the term is subjective. But then, maybe Dan has some evidence that Trump admitted to another than he knew he didn't win by a landslide but purposely chose that term to...what?..deceive who?

2. a) "Three million votes in the U.S. presidential election were cast by illegal aliens, according to Greg Phillips of the VoteFraud.org organization."

--http://www.infowars.com/report-three-million-votes-in-presidential-election-cast-by-illegal-aliens/

Now, the above has NOT been confirmed, and I can't find anything that shows Phillips providing his proof. But this claim has been showing up in a variety of places and most likely Trump is repeating what he had heard, read or been told by someone in his circle. Not something he should spread without first confirming, but that would not be a lie until the claim could be proven false.

b) Obama granted an interview with a Latina celeb who asked about those, including undocumented people, whom she referred to as "citizens" because they "contributed", being afraid to vote for fear of being deported. While Obama's response eventually distinguished between those who legally could and couldn't vote, he indicated that no one checks the voting rolls afterwards in any way that would lead to anyone being deported. While technically he didn't encourage illegals to vote, his response does indicate that they could vote and get away with it.

c) California, and likely some other states, allow illegals to get driver's licenses, and in that state, if you have one, you can vote. What are the chances that some illegals would indeed cast votes with that knowledge?

The notion that there may be millions of illegals in the country who have voted is not far-fetched at all, given how many illegals are actually in this country. They keep throwing out the number "11 million" and have been for several years at least. But the fact is that there is no way of knowing just how many illegals have voted in American elections. To say that illegals likely voted is not a lie, nor is putting a number on it in some throw-away line at a speech. It's only an unsubstantiated assumption about which dishonest lefties will make a big deal.

Marshall Art said...

And not to put too fine a point on it, I would be interested in hearing of any "lie" told by Trump that is more egregious and heinous than that which Hillary told the parents of the Benghazi dead. If that was the only lie she ever told (and that's ridiculous to even suggest), that "trumps" most everything (if not absolutely everything) that Trump ever said that wasn't true, intentionally or otherwise. Don't tell me where one's trust would be more displaced because Trump likes to think his win was a landslide and that had the integrity of the voting process been better, he'd have won the popular vote as well. You make yourself a greater fool.

Craig said...

Of course a lack of trustworthiness is a part of why I could support neither candidate.

As for the folks who categorize truth/lies, the fact that one such organization categorized the "I you like your doctor you can keep them." as both true and the biggest lie of the year raises questions about both bias and methodology.

Dan, your compulsion to take my agreement with you and somehow turn it into disagreement seems strange to me.

Anonymous said...

Craig, I didn't turn anything into a disagreement. I merely affirmed that what you complained about is nothing I do.

Marshall, infowars is one of the site's that passes on fake news. Hence, the problem.

Dan

Craig said...

I fail to see how one can complain about fake news while not mentioning things like "hands up, don't shoot", "the gentle giant", "if you like your doctor/insurance plan,,,". Those are all fake news propagated by the mainstream media.

Dan you've been pretty clear that you expect and in fact are willing to tolerate a certain degree of untrustworthiness in candidates you support, you've gone to significant lengths to minimize the lies Clinton's lies. Perhaps there is a point at which you will fail to support the leftist candidate due to untrustworthiness issues, but so far we haven't seen it. Maybe we will at some point.

Marshall Art said...

"Dan you've been pretty clear that you expect and in fact are willing to tolerate a certain degree of untrustworthiness in candidates you support, you've gone to significant lengths to minimize the lies Clinton's lies(sic)."

And that's the major takeaway in all of this. Dan is so keen on denigrating Trump, that he provides examples of that which are not lies and lies about them being lies...which is incredibly ironic, if not hypocritical. And in doing so, he's also engaging in the childish ploy of pointing at Trump whenever he's reminded of the lies of those he supports. ("Yeah, I know, but listen to what Trump said! He's such a liar!")

Dan Trabue said...

Marshall, as a point of observable, demonstrable fact, Trump has made constant, repeated false claims. Now YOU claim that those 90% of his claims were intended to be hyperbole, or jokes, maybe. But Trump didn't say that (at least not at the time... sometimes after the fact, he did). The point remains, whether hyperbole or "jokes," 90% of his claims (give or take) are false and we have no way of knowing when they are and when they aren't. Thus, the point remains:

Citizens have a responsibility to suspect every claim he says, since we never know if any individual claim is in the 10% of actual truth-telling/fact-stating.

Craig...

You've been pretty clear that you expect and in fact are willing to tolerate a certain degree of untrustworthiness in candidates you support

I recognize the reality that most politicians lie some portion of the time. That is just demonstrable reality.

Do you disagree with reality?

Do I "tolerate it..."? I recognize it is reality and, if we don't vote for any politicians/humans who sometimes stretch facts/make false claims, then we would never vote for anyone.

Do you disagree? Do you opt to never vote for anyone?

I don't think you do. So I don't see how you're any different than I am, on that point. We ALL vote for (and thus, "tolerate") politicians who lie. So, what's your point?

Marshall Art said...

I find it incredible that in order to insist on your claims that you feel it necessary to insist on that which no one else finds reason to do. The Bible MUST say somewhere that it is to be taken literally in order for you to do so (while having an unusual notion of what it means to take it literally in the first place). In the same way, you now insist that when someone exaggerates or engages in hyperbole, that person MUST point out that it is exaggeration or hyperbole or else he's just a liar. Nonsense. You fully ignore what it means to lie, and worse, do nothing to prove that the speaker, whoever it is, intends to deceive.

Far worse than that, you choose to rip on this guy, as you have throughout the campaign season, as if he's the worst "liar" out there, while Hillary's lies have been far more egregious. You're constant whining about the trustworthiness of Trump therefore makes YOU a liar. Throughout the Obama administration, I can recall no example of you calling him out on his falsehoods, nor have you spent any time ranting about the deceit of Hillary Clinton. IF Trump's "lying" is all that important to you, why no posts on that of Hillary or Obama?

Marshall Art said...

BTW, this...

""I grab them by the p$%#y... I can't help myself."

...as it is a false representation of his actual words, and thus, I can't ever accept that any quote you post is not a lie without a link to something that clearly confirms it. You obviously can't be trusted to speak truthfully.

Anonymous said...

Marshall, you have one chance to answer this question, then I'm done with you.

You are suggesting that in YOUR opinion, all the false claims made by Trump (some 90% of his claims, by some counts) are actually hyperbole. The problem with this is that Trump has not stated that they are hyperbole, he is making these claims as if they were facts. In fact, at least in one case, he was given the chance to clarify. He was asked, "you're exaggerating, right?" No, he assured us. He was being factual. Obama DID create Isis. Only after multiple attempts to clarify this obviously false claim, did Trump finally come around with "yah, I was just kidding, it was sarcasm!"

But according to YOUR hunch, these 90% of false claims are all not intended to be fact claims. The problem with this is obvious, but to make it clear: IF a man makes up false claims some 90% of the time, AND it's never clear - or he even confirms that his claims are factual - then HOW does one know when one can trust a single thing he says?

THAT is the problem with Trump and why his casual, flippant lies are worse than anything that you may believe Obama or Clinton actually lied about... and worse than what Bush and any of the republicans lie about: Because he casually, carelessly makes false claim after false claim. It undermines Truth and makes him entirely untrustworthy.

That is the question you need to answer. If you still don't answer it directly, this conversation is finished, as you will have chosen the side of actually not caring about truth.

~Dan

Anonymous said...

Trump's words...

{You know I'm automatically attracted to beautiful... I just start kissing them. It's like a magnet. Just kiss. I don't even wait..."

"Grab them by the pussy. You can do anything."

I missed the exact wording, but that is the literal gist of what he said when he confessed to sexually assaulting women.

That you defend sexual assault is obscene and makes you not trustworthy. You stay away from any women friends of mine.

~Dan

Craig said...

Dan,

The one significant difference between our positions on the honesty of politicians, is that I've demonstrated a threshold beyond which I will refuse to support a candidate based on honesty, you haven't. You've repeatedly minimized Clinton's lies and have actively supported her despite those lies.

Personally, I can see a significant difference between Trump making a false statement about the magnitude of his victory and Clinton purposely and intentionally lying (to the family members of the deceased) about the cause of the attack in Libya. I also have seen the director of the FBI confirm that Clinton lied to FBI and congressional investigators. (The lack of charges, doesn't mean she didn't lie.). Personally, I can make a distinction between a plethora of relatively insignificant, kind of silly lies and a pattern of significant substantive lies.

Finally, I've been quite clear elsewhere that I believe that character is the most important qualification for office, and that I will vote on that belief. Further, If I am put in a position where I feel like I must vote for someone who's character I find to be lacking, I will be quite clear about my lack of support for that person. Had you simply acknowledged the fact that Clinton was deeply flawed, and that you were voting against Trump rather than for her, then you and MA would have pretty much been in the same boat. But, you chose to tout her superb qualifications and attempt to excuse her character failings.

The simple fact is that the Clintons have been much more directly involved in rigging elections than anyone was in this recent presidential contest. Not to mention P-BO and his administration's attempt to interfere with elections in Israel.

I'm at a loss for anything else to add here, so I probably won't.

It comes back to this, Trump's willingness to spout off with whatever pops into his mind was my first reason not to support him, this tendency is the reason why I fear that Trump will have a hard time accomplishing many of the things he wants to. However, he is the only president we have and I will support the things he does that I think are good and oppose the opposite.

Much like I did with P-BO.

Anonymous said...

The one significant difference between our positions on the honesty of politicians, is that I've demonstrated a threshold beyond which I will refuse to support a candidate based on honesty, you haven't.

Clearly, I have. For one thing: If a candidate - whichever party - makes false claims ~80-90% of the time - and those lies are casual and stupid lies, like Trump's - that candidate can't be trusted to tell the truth and that is a line I wouldn't cross, whichever party that candidate was associated with.

If, on the other hand, all the candidates have made some false claims and the candidate with the fewest false claims was down around 25% (as was the case with Clinton), that's a threshold I'm willing to go along with. As are you, since candidates such as Bush, Romney, and Cruz are candidates you probably supported and they had a higher percentage of lies.

So, that threshold is one I have that you appear to share and are even willing to go higher than me.

Of course, the content of the lies is another thing. False claims about war crimes, for instance (like Reagan/Bush/Bush) are more serious than false claims about a consensual sexual affair (like B. Clinton).

There, too, you appear to have a higher threshold for the false claims of Reagan/Bush/Bush about war crimes than I do.

On the other hand, whereas I don't view lies about consensual affairs as seriously as war crime lies, because the context of B. Clinton's lies were in testifying before Congress, and because it was about an affair with an adult woman who was an intern who was just barely an adult, that was a threshold of false claims that was too far for me and I called for him to step down.

As to any of your hunches about H Clinton's false claims, I was never convinced of the suggestion of false claims. I was dubious about what she had to say, but it was possible, it seemed to me, that she just made mistakes, as opposed to making a false claim and, again, since it was about email mistakes, I'm just not nearly as concerned about those possible false claims as war crime false claims.

Regardless, the point stands: I do object to false claims and have standards that, at least in some cases, are more stringent than yours.

If facts matter.

~Dan

Marshall Art said...

"You are suggesting that in YOUR opinion, all the false claims made by Trump (some 90% of his claims, by some counts) are actually hyperbole"

No I am not. Not even close. I'm stating that the man indulges in hyperbole and exaggeration and that, while not 100% true, hyperbole and exaggeration amplify an underlying truth or truth claim. Thus, to whine about a margin of victory is really NOT a landslide, or that there were MILLIONS of fraudulent votes without which he likely won the popular vote as well, and to use them as examples of "lies" is itself deceitful. Only Trump haters like yourself like to believe such constitutes massive character deficiency rather than mere rhetorical flourish. Few on this side of the divide put much import on such things, knowing the difference between such and actual lies, such as being pinned down by sniper fire in Bosnia, being named after a guy whose fame came after she was born or that the death of a son was due to a video.

"The problem with this is that Trump has not stated that they are hyperbole, he is making these claims as if they were facts"

No one who indulges in hyperbole or exaggeration needs to unless they are addressing lefties like you who look for any opportunity to disparage and demonize someone from the other side of the political/ideological divide.

"In fact, at least in one case, he was given the chance to clarify. He was asked, "you're exaggerating, right?" No, he assured us. He was being factual. Obama DID create Isis. Only after multiple attempts to clarify this obviously false claim, did Trump finally come around with "yah, I was just kidding, it was sarcasm!""

As you've provided no link to this little episode, I cannot in good conscience take it as having actually happened, given your own lack of honesty and your unChristian contempt for those on the opposite side of the divide.

At the same time, Trump is not the only person who draws a line from Obama foreign policy to the rise of ISIS. I find such analysis perfectly legitimate and sensible given how his politically-driven exit from Iraq, and the manner in which he did it, was completely at odds with the advice of his generals and the hopes of the Iraqi president. Thus, I don't believe he backed off that claim, even if he did temperate with an explanation of some sort. Bottom line...not a lie. Just an opinion.

"But according to YOUR hunch, these 90% of false claims are all not intended to be fact claims."

YOU are the one basing all on hunch, including the "hunch" that the "90%" claim is accurate, simply because it makes your political opponent seem worse than he is. Which is a lie. YOU are the one who does nothing to separate "fact claim" from personal opinion or exaggeration or hyperbole, lumping them all under the umbrella of "a false statement made with the deliberate intent to deceive: an intentional untruth", which you do with the deliberate intent to portray Trump as an inveterate liar whose every word cannot be trusted. YOU are the one who suggests that the lies of Obama and Clinton are somehow not problematic, and in fact, you seem to suggest they are absolutely trustworthy.

YOU are the one who buys into this "90%" claim as if you have personally reviewed every claim he's made in this campaign and researched each one for accuracy, for intent and for truth unvarnished by hyperbole and/or exaggeration, having compared it to the claims and pronouncements of each of his opponents with the same "objective" eye. YOU are the one who does nothing to compare the gravity of the false claims made by any politician so as to determine whose "lies" are the more egregious, only focusing on Trump as if his spouting off is worthy of the greater concern.

Marshall Art said...

continuing....

"IF a man makes up false claims some 90% of the time, AND it's never clear - or he even confirms that his claims are factual - then HOW does one know when one can trust a single thing he says?"

First, and again, the "90%" claim is merely that which you choose to believe due to your unChristian contempt for Trump. Even the source of this claim doubtlessly provides no means by which one can assess the accuracy of it. But of course, that doesn't matter to leftists...only the claim itself does and having been made, for the leftist is is thus truth.

Secondly, adults actually research claims of politicians for accuracy or simply put their faith in that person that said person is beyond reproach. Those of us on the right do not take anything on faith that isn't known with certainty to be true. The left, however, gives full support to anything said by their people, while distorting, misrepresenting and lying about political opponents. Said another way, I have a much harder time believing anything that comes from a leftist source, and have found that doing my own fact-checking is essential.

"THAT is the problem with Trump and why his casual, flippant lies are worse than anything that you may believe Obama or Clinton actually lied about..."

No. That's just you pretending it is worse than the gravity of falsehoods spewed by your favored politicians. You want it to be worse than anything that has been proven to be false by both Obama and Clinton, so as to mitigate and minimize their own false witness. Which is lying.

"That is the question you need to answer. If you still don't answer it directly, this conversation is finished, as you will have chosen the side of actually not caring about truth."

As I pretty much reprinted every line you've written in my response, I saw no question to answer. What's more, I'm not likely to answer by the terms in which you demand I do, since your demands and terms suggest the only answer you want.

Marshall Art said...

"As to any of your hunches about H Clinton's false claims, I was never convinced of the suggestion of false claims. I was dubious about what she had to say, but it was possible, it seemed to me, that she just made mistakes, as opposed to making a false claim and, again, since it was about email mistakes, I'm just not nearly as concerned about those possible false claims as war crime false claims."<>

Wow. Just...Wow.

Craig said...

Re: "War crimes lies", I am unaware of any actual charges filed against Regan prior to his second electoral victory. To be honest, I'm unaware of any instance of any president being charged with "war crimes". In the absence of evidence...

Re: "Consensual sexual activity" lies. The problem wasn't that Clinton lied about sex, it's that he committed perjury. The way perjury works is that the subject of the lie doesn't matter, it's the violating of the oath to tell the "truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.". Now if your seriously defending perjury, that's a whole other thing.

The problem you have is that you've thrown out these unsourced figures about % of lies without the context of the seriousness of the lie.

For example, I would hold that lying to the family members of the State Department employees (not to mention the press and the American people) killed in Benghazi about what caused the riots that killed them, is much more significant than an off the cuff tweet about margin of victory. But, hey that's just me.

Again, just me, but when the FBI director says that someone lied in response to an official investigation it seems more significant than a tweet about unregistered voters.

I'm not defending Trump, I'm just pointing out that a few really big significant lies about actions taken while serving in a government position of great responsibility seem at least as significant as a bunch of stupid "little" lies (misstatements, hyperbole, mistakes, whatever).

One final note, it's interesting that you can't/won't/haven't addressed H. Clinton's lies but instead chose to go back in history and bring up one case of perjury and one case of fantasy.

Craig said...
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Craig said...
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