Why does Trump get away with lying?

An article titled, “Why does President Trump get away with lying?,” recently appeared in the November 20, 2018 Newsweek.

Written by Lee McIntyre, the article focused on Trump’s motivation. Some excerpts:

Most politicians lie. And if most politicians lie, then why are some Americans so hard on President Donald Trump?

According to The Washington Post, Trump has told 6,420 lies so far in his presidency. In the seven weeks leading up to the midterms, his rate increased to 30 per day.

That’s a lot, but isn’t this a difference in degree and not a difference in kind with other politicians?

Every human being on earth has told lies. The difference between Trump and normal human beings is both in degree and in kind.

Yet the difference in Trump’s prevarication seems to be found not in the quantity or enormity of his lies, but in the way that Trump uses his lies in service to a proto-authoritarian political ideology.

I recently wrote a book, titled Post-Truth, about what happens when “alternative facts” replace actual facts, and feelings have more weight than evidence. Looked at from this perspective, calling Trump a liar fails to capture his key strategic purpose.

Any amateur politician can engage in lying. Trump is engaging in “post-truth.”

Ideology, in other words, takes precedence over reality.

As Yale philosopher Jason Stanley argues, “The key thing is that fascist politics is about identifying enemies, appealing to the in-group (usually the majority group), and smashing truth and replacing it with power.”

Consider the example of Trump’s recent decision not to cancel two political rallies on the same day as the Pittsburgh massacre. He said that this was based on the fact that the New York Stock Exchange was open the day after 9/11.

This isn’t true. The stock exchange stayed closed for six days after 9/11.

So was this a mistake? A lie? Trump didn’t seem to treat it so. In fact, he repeated the falsehood later in the same day.

Why would he do this?

The point of a lie is to convince someone that a falsehood is true. But the point of post-truth is domination. 

When Trump lies he does so not to get someone to accept what he’s saying as true, but to show that he is powerful enough to say it.

Just to remind you, the title of McIntyre’s article is, “Why does President Trump get away with lying.”

Unfortunately, the article does not address that question.

The words, “get away with,” do not ask why Trump lies. They ask why his lying goes unpunished.

Those who see Trump not only as a liar, but as a dangerous, incompetent, immoral psychopath — an obvious, and dangerous, incompetent, immoral psychopath — are mystified that millions of people willingly ignore and even defend his lies, the danger, his incompetence, and his psychotic behavior. 

“How can they be oblivious to what he is?” some ask. “Are they stupid? Are they immoral, themselves?”

There is an answer.

Imagine you are married to a plain looking woman, but when she wakes up in the morning, her hair askew and her face creased by pillow wrinkles, you kiss her and tell her she is the most beautiful woman in the world.

She knows you are lying, but she enjoys your lie. She married you to protect her from the pain of reality, and from the danger of the truth. She is soothed by your lies.

The conservatives’ perfect, white America


If they are poor, they want to be told it is not their fault, but rather the fault lies with immigrants who steal jobs and change America from the beautiful place it once was.

If they are rich, they want someone to tell them he will distance them from life’s dangers by applying Gap Psychology, and keeping down the madding crowd.

If they have lost hope, they want someone to give them hope that “something will be done” about “aliens” — Muslims, Mexicans, gays, browns, yellows or blacks, who commit crimes, rape, pillage, and murder.

They don’t care that Trump boasts virtually every awful characteristic a human can have.

Trump doesn’t just “get away”  with lying. His followers are not shocked by his lies.  Like the “white” lies you told the plain-looking woman:

Trump’s lies are what his followers want.

If Trump stopped lying — if he opened his followers’ eyes to reality — they would abandon him. Reality is an anathema to Trump’s followers. 

What’s important to Trump’s followers is that he hates the same people they hate. Like Hitler’s, Trump’s following is based on hatred.

It is no surprise that Trump, formerly a liberal, has been adopted by conservatives. They are the people who abhor progress. They want to conserve things as they were in some make-believe version of 1950s America.

Thus the slogan, “Make America Great Again.” The key word, is “again.”

A conservative wants to conserve the innocent past, when things were blissful, and “aliens” did not have so much power — when these people knew “their place.”

Conservatives do not dream. They do not send men to the moon, nor dream of Mars. They do not wish to learn of other cultures. They do not try to reduce poverty with a “Social Security” or “Medicare for all plan.” They do not open their arms to the “tired, the poor, the huddled masses yearning to breathe free.”

Conservatives abhor the liberal dream of equality and prosperity for all, not because the dream is unrealistic — the “Ten Steps to Prosperity” could take us there — but because the dream is a danger to the illusory past. 

Trump and his lies protect them from that.

Ironically, Trump imprisons his followers in his cage of lies. He wants to build walls, to create fortress America, to lock up his followers, and make their lives worse, ever worse.

While he and his family and his minions gain power, the rest will lose it.

Today’s politicians have lost the ability to dream for America. For them, no progress is possible. Cut budgets for science, while abusing it. No help for education or the arts.


The federal government needs to get out of the education business and let the states, local districts and parents determine what is taught in our schools.”

Re. the National Endowment for the Arts: “The Congress, as representatives of the people, make the determination as to what the spending priorities ought to be.”

“The (Trump) administration often disregards science in and excludes agency scientific staff from decisionmaking even when legally bound to consider such evidence. The Trump administration is sidelining science from decisionmaking and weakening the federal scientific enterprise.” (A survey of scientists at 16 federal agencies.)” 

Now fifty years have passed since Americans have touched the moon, and we have no more dreams. We pull each other down, like lobsters in a bucket. Every dream is sneered at as being “unaffordable” and “unsustainable.”

Instead of free education for all people, we give tax cuts to the rich. We send troops to the border to protect us from foreigners who dream of creating a better world. 

America was populated and built by dreamers, who came from other lands and other cultures. Together, they are what really made America great. 


Now, instead of dreams, we settle for a despot’s lies to a stagnant old America. Rather than accepting the challenge to climb and grow, we want only to keep what we have, away from change and mythical invaders.

That is how Trump gets away with lying. Progressives imagine a better tomorrow. Conservatives imagine a better yesterday.

Rodger Malcolm Mitchell

Monetary SovereigntyTwitter: @rodgermitchell; Search #monetarysovereigntyFacebook: Rodger Malcolm Mitchell


The single most important problems in economics involve the excessive income/wealth/power Gaps between the have-mores and the have-less.

Wide Gaps negatively affect poverty, health and longevity, education, housing, law and crime, war, leadership, ownership, bigotry, supply and demand, taxation, GDP, international relations, scientific advancement, the environment, human motivation and well-being, and virtually every other issue in economics.

Implementation of The Ten Steps To Prosperity can narrow the Gaps:

Ten Steps To Prosperity:
1. Eliminate FICA

2. Federally funded medicare — parts a, b & d, plus long-term care — for everyone

3. Provide a monthly economic bonus to every man, woman and child in America (similar to social security for all)

4. Free education (including post-grad) for everyone

5. Salary for attending school

6. Eliminate federal taxes on business

7. Increase the standard income tax deduction, annually. 

8. Tax the very rich (the “.1%) more, with higher progressive tax rates on all forms of income.

9. Federal ownership of all banks

10.Increase federal spending on the myriad initiatives that benefit America’s 99.9%  

The Ten Steps will grow the economy, and narrow the income/wealth/power Gap between the rich and you.


A very short question to you who still support Donald Trump

It takes only two things to keep people in chains: The ignorance of the oppressed and the treachery of their leaders.

When a person becomes a known and repeated liar, eventually nothing he/she says is credible, even on the rare occasions when he may tell the truth.

Any statement of the past or present is viewed as a work of fiction. Any promise will not be trusted.

So the question for the minority of you who still support Donald Trump is: WHY?

The man almost never stops lying. What he tells you rarely is accurate. What he promises for you will not happen. And what he does invariably hurts your country.

Image result for sign a contract with eyes closed
“I am sitting in the Oval Office with a pen in hand, waiting for our senators to give it to me.”

Here is a man who declared he would sign any — ANY — anti-Obamacare bill that came out of Congress, no matter how many people it deprived of health care, no matter the cost, no matter the fallout.

He wasn’t asking what beneficial features or what harmful features the bill had. He was just sitting there, as he said, “pen in hand,” willing to sign anything.

This is the President of the United States, the most powerful man in the world, wanting to sign any bill just so he could say he accomplished something.

Is this the man you trust to act responsibly as President? When you cast your vote, is this what you expected?

And as for lying, do you know of any President, any politician, any human being, who lies as continually as Donald J. Trump? He lies during his rallies. He lies in his tweets. He lies during interviews. He even lies to the Boy Scouts, for heaven’s sake. There is no time, when he is talking or writing, that he is not lying.

Want evidence? Here are three websites you should visit:

A Chilling Theory on Trump’s Nonstop Lies

All statements from Donald Trump

Trump’s Lies

So again, the question for the minority of you who still support Donald Trump is: WHY?

What is it that Trump has done for you, is doing for you, or will do for you that makes you support him? And how do you really know what he has done, is doing or will do?

You might say it doesn’t matter whether or not you support him, because he is President and your support or non-support means nothing.  But that wouldn’t be true. Your support or non-support is vital.

The key now is Congress. If you contact your Senators and Congressperson, and if you write to your local media, indicating your dissatisfaction with a lying, ignorant, immoral, “do-nothing-but-play-golf-on-his-properties” President, the Republicans in Congress will turn away from him.

Then, the two parties can begin to work together, as they normally have done in the past, to benefit America, and not just to win.

Congress is not a zero-sum game, where if one party wins that means the other party loses. America has many problems that sincere politicians (yes, they exist) can solve if only the pressure to follow the party line were eased.

Trump is a menace to America. His hate-based ideology is alien to our America spirit. His lies are corrosive. He is a terrible role model and an awful symbol for our nation. No one trusts him — not any other nation, not the majority of Americans, not the people he hires and then fires if they don’t put him ahead of the country.

He claims to be a great negotiator, but who would negotiate with a man whose statements are known to be lies and whose promises are known to be false?  Why would anyone?

If you make it clear to Congress that you do not support his lies, his ignorance,  and his cruelty, Congress will take him out of the equation, and do its work to benefit you, not to benefit him.

It can be done. It has been done. It must be done.

It’s up to you.

Rodger Malcolm Mitchell
Monetary Sovereignty



•All we have are partial solutions; the best we can do is try.

•Those, who do not understand the differences between Monetary Sovereignty and monetary non-sovereignty, do not understand economics.

•Any monetarily NON-sovereign government — be it city, county, state or nation — that runs an ongoing trade deficit, eventually will run out of money no matter how much it taxes its citizens.

•The more federal budgets are cut and taxes increased, the weaker an economy becomes..

•No nation can tax itself into prosperity, nor grow without money growth.

•Cutting federal deficits to grow the economy is like applying leeches to cure anemia.

•A growing economy requires a growing supply of money (GDP = Federal Spending + Non-federal Spending + Net Exports)

•Deficit spending grows the supply of money

•The limit to federal deficit spending is an inflation that cannot be cured with interest rate control. The limit to non-federal deficit spending is the ability to borrow.

•Until the 99% understand the need for federal deficits, the upper 1% will rule.

•Progressives think the purpose of government is to protect the poor and powerless from the rich and powerful. Conservatives think the purpose of government is to protect the rich and powerful from the poor and powerless.

•The single most important problem in economics is the Gap between the rich and the rest.

•Austerity is the government’s method for widening the Gap between the rich and the rest.

•Everything in economics devolves to motive, and the motive is the Gap between the rich and the rest..


The Daily Bell says: Facts do not matter. Lies are O.K.

The Daily Bell is a right-wing / Libertarian website, in the business of selling gold to people who believe an essentially useless metal, which pays no interest or dividends, and costs money to ship, store, and insure, is a good investment or “real” money.

In short, they sell a pipe dream, so naturally, they are pro-Donald Trump.

Here are two descriptions of Trump’s latest speech, one from the Daily Bell and one from MSNBC.

First the Daily Bell description:

Trump Speech a Hit: Emotional Honesty May Be Pivotal to His Election Success
By Daily Bell Staff – June 23, 2016

Note that it’s not real honesty, but “emotional” honesty. What is “emotional” honesty? It’s when a person is a liar, but honestly feels emotional about his lies.

To the Daily Bell, this feeling of emotion about one’s dishonesty is admirable:

Donald Trump’s Latest Distortions on Hillary Clinton … A look at Trump’s assertions about Clinton on Wednesday and how they stack up with the facts … Donald Trump’s fierce denunciation of Hillary Clinton on Wednesday was rife with distortion. –AP/Fortune

Trump is not so concerned about statistical accuracy. He’s concerned about emotional honesty.

The other word for “statistical accuracy” is “facts.” What the Daily Bell seems to mean is: “Trump is not concerned about facts. He appeals to emotions. That’s the kind of man we want for the leader of the free world — an emotionally sincere liar.”

NPRs Mara Liasson called the speech one that “Republicans Have Been Waiting 20 Years To Hear.”

Donald Trump did what Republicans have begged their presidential candidate to do for months — lay out the case, from A to Z, against Hillary Clinton.

What they mean is “LIE out the case . . .” The Daily Bell apparently delights in lies.

Trump didn’t hold back in a blistering speech Wednesday. He went through chapter and verse of every criticism — based in fact or conspiracy theory — against the Clintons.

Except there were no facts and lots of conspiracy theories.

In sum, Trump said, Hillary Clinton may be “the most corrupt person ever to seek the presidency of the United States” and a “world-class liar.”

If the Daily Bell believes Trump’s followers have no interest in facts, wait until he doesn’t deliver on his promises to them. Then those lies won’t seem so benign.

As he would be with a good movie, Trump isn’t interested in the plot so much as the feeling.

This AP article wants to diminish the speech based on places where Trump may have exaggerated or misstated.

He accused Clinton of announcing a withdrawal from Iraq that wasn’t on her watch, pulled numbers out of nowhere on her plan for refugees and went beyond the established facts behind the killing of the U.S. ambassador to Libya in stating starkly that she “left him there to die.”

But Trump doesn’t care about rigorous factual accuracy. He wants to get across the point that Hillary is corrupt and lies habitually.

“Rigorous, factual accuracy” is known as “the truth” in the real world. Trump doesn’t care about the truth.

Trump also lambastes Hillary for corruption (accepting jewelry) and for wanting higher taxes and higher spending.

The AP article sets the record straight on these issues. Again, Trump exaggerates.

But it really doesn’t matter.

So Trump lies about his claims that Hillary is a liar, “but it really doesn’t matter”?

Is this the most ridiculous upside-down attempt to excuse the worst candidate in recent memory? The Daily Bell thinks lying is bad except when Trump does it, in which case it’s “emotional honesty.”

Remember Daily Bell’s views on honesty, the next time they try to sell you gold. If they lie to you, it doesn’t matter, so long as their emotions are “honest.”

Here is MSNBC’s take on the same speech:

Donald Trump gets lost beneath ‘an avalanche of falsehoods’

Most of the attacks were predictable and clumsily delivered, but the most striking thing about this morning’s scripted address was its breathtaking dishonesty.

In theory, if Clinton were as awful as Trump and Republicans claim, it should be fairly easy to deliver a speech condemning her using facts and real-world evidence.

Instead, as Slate’s Jamelle Bouie put it, Trump leaned on “an avalanche of falsehoods.”

It’s hard to even know where to start; the lie-to-sentence ratio approached one to one.

Trump said he opposed the war in Iraq before the 2003 invasion, which isn’t true. He said Clinton’s email server was hacked, which isn’t true.

Trump said Clinton wants “totally open borders” and an end to “virtually all immigration enforcement,” which isn’t even close to being true.

Trump lied about Syrian refugees. He lied about the loan he received to start his business.

He lied about U.S. tax rates. He lied about Benghazi (more than once). He lied about the Clinton Foundation. He lied about gifts Clinton received during her tenure as Secretary of State.

And really, this is just a sampling. If there had been a machine in the room that buzzed every time Trump said something untrue, the thing would have caught fire by the time the candidate wrapped up his remarks.

Remember, if Trump had been speaking off the cuff, it might be easier to defend some of these obvious and demonstrable falsehoods; he and his allies might be able to say he got confused or lost his train of thought.

But this was Trump reading on a teleprompter from a prepared text. In other words, Trump deliberately made a whole lot of claims that weren’t in any way true – all while accusing his rival of being a “liar.”

By some measures, this morning’s ridiculous tirade should have been a disqualifying moment for Trump: it served as powerful evidence that the candidate is so disconnected from reality, he hardly understands what the truth is.

Perhaps the Daily Bell’s gold hawkers don’t care about facts. And perhaps those hypnotized by the Trump circus act don’t care whether their hero is telling them the truth.

But somehow, I suspect the great majority of Americans are more interested in hearing the facts about situations and plans than experiencing a litany of sophomoric insults and lies.

The BS act gets a bit stale, and this is no time for circuses.

The futures of America and Americans and our children are at stake.

Dump the clown.

Rodger Malcolm Mitchell
Monetary Sovereignty


Ten Steps to Prosperity:
1. ELIMINATE FICA (Ten Reasons to Eliminate FICA )
Although the article lists 10 reasons to eliminate FICA, there are two fundamental reasons:
*FICA is the most regressive tax in American history, widening the Gap by punishing the low and middle-income groups, while leaving the rich untouched, and
*The federal government, being Monetarily Sovereign, neither needs nor uses FICA to support Social Security and Medicare.
This article addresses the questions:
*Does the economy benefit when the rich afford better health care than the rest of Americans?
*Aside from improved health care, what are the other economic effects of “Medicare for everyone?”
*How much would it cost taxpayers?
*Who opposes it?”
3. PROVIDE AN ECONOMIC BONUS TO EVERY MAN, WOMAN AND CHILD IN AMERICA, AND/OR EVERY STATE, A PER CAPITA ECONOMIC BONUS (The JG (Jobs Guarantee) vs the GI (Guaranteed Income) vs the EB) Or institute a reverse income tax.
This article is the fifth in a series about direct financial assistance to Americans:

Why Modern Monetary Theory’s Employer of Last Resort is a bad idea. Sunday, Jan 1 2012
MMT’s Job Guarantee (JG) — “Another crazy, rightwing, Austrian nutjob?” Thursday, Jan 12 2012
Why Modern Monetary Theory’s Jobs Guarantee is like the EU’s euro: A beloved solution to the wrong problem. Tuesday, May 29 2012
“You can’t fire me. I’m on JG” Saturday, Jun 2 2012

Economic growth should include the “bottom” 99.9%, not just the .1%, the only question being, how best to accomplish that. Modern Monetary Theory (MMT) favors giving everyone a job. Monetary Sovereignty (MS) favors giving everyone money. The five articles describe the pros and cons of each approach.
4. FREE EDUCATION (INCLUDING POST-GRAD) FOR EVERYONEFive reasons why we should eliminate school loans
Monetarily non-sovereign State and local governments, despite their limited finances, support grades K-12. That level of education may have been sufficient for a largely agrarian economy, but not for our currently more technical economy that demands greater numbers of highly educated workers.
Because state and local funding is so limited, grades K-12 receive short shrift, especially those schools whose populations come from the lowest economic groups. And college is too costly for most families.
An educated populace benefits a nation, and benefiting the nation is the purpose of the federal government, which has the unlimited ability to pay for K-16 and beyond.
Even were schooling to be completely free, many young people cannot attend, because they and their families cannot afford to support non-workers. In a foundering boat, everyone needs to bail, and no one can take time off for study.
If a young person’s “job” is to learn and be productive, he/she should be paid to do that job, especially since that job is one of America’s most important.
Corporations themselves exist only as legalities. They don’t pay taxes or pay for anything else. They are dollar-tranferring machines. They transfer dollars from customers to employees, suppliers, shareholders and the government (the later having no use for those dollars).
Any tax on corporations reduces the amount going to employees, suppliers and shareholders, which diminishes the economy. Ultimately, all corporate taxes come around and reappear as deductions from your personal income.
7. INCREASE THE STANDARD INCOME TAX DEDUCTION, ANNUALLY. (Refer to this.) Federal taxes punish taxpayers and harm the economy. The federal government has no need for those punishing and harmful tax dollars. There are several ways to reduce taxes, and we should evaluate and choose the most progressive approaches.
Cutting FICA and corporate taxes would be an good early step, as both dramatically affect the 99%. Annual increases in the standard income tax deduction, and a reverse income tax also would provide benefits from the bottom up. Both would narrow the Gap.
There was a time when I argued against increasing anyone’s federal taxes. After all, the federal government has no need for tax dollars, and all taxes reduce Gross Domestic Product, thereby negatively affecting the entire economy, including the 99.9%.
But I have come to realize that narrowing the Gap requires trimming the top. It simply would not be possible to provide the 99.9% with enough benefits to narrow the Gap in any meaningful way. Bill Gates reportedly owns $70 billion. To get to that level, he must have been earning $10 billion a year. Pick any acceptable Gap (1000 to 1?), and the lowest paid American would have to receive $10 million a year. Unreasonable.
9. FEDERAL OWNERSHIP OF ALL BANKS (Click The end of private banking and How should America decide “who-gets-money”?)
Banks have created all the dollars that exist. Even dollars created at the direction of the federal government, actually come into being when banks increase the numbers in checking accounts. This gives the banks enormous financial power, and as we all know, power corrupts — especially when multiplied by a profit motive.
Although the federal government also is powerful and corrupted, it does not suffer from a profit motive, the world’s most corrupting influence.
10. INCREASE FEDERAL SPENDING ON THE MYRIAD INITIATIVES THAT BENEFIT AMERICA’S 99.9% (Federal agencies)Browse the agencies. See how many agencies benefit the lower- and middle-income/wealth/ power groups, by adding dollars to the economy and/or by actions more beneficial to the 99.9% than to the .1%.
Save this reference as your primer to current economics. Sadly, much of the material is not being taught in American schools, which is all the more reason for you to use it.

The Ten Steps will grow the economy, and narrow the income/wealth/power Gap between the rich and you.