Tag: Lies

Drowning in Irony

 

One thing you can count on: the Left has no interest in being consistent, truthful or rational. They are perfectly comfortable contradicting themselves or misrepresenting the facts, because, after all, it’s for the greater good. So far no one has told me what the “greater good” actually is, or what’s good about it, but I digress.

Lately, the number of confusing and contradictory statements that have come from the Administration has been startling. I decided to list some of them, and you may find them both alarming and amusing. Some go back a couple of years. I will do my best to represent the understanding of the Left—although “understanding” might be an overstatement. For your aggravation and pleasure:

Let’s See More Republican Rage and Democrat Reticence

 

Have you noticed the change in the tenor of the political debate? I certainly have, with the Republicans not just complaining, but raging against the injustices, lies, and government overreach that the citizenry is being subjected to. And even Democrats are mumbling their discomfort with some of the actions that Joe Biden is taking, as well as pressures from their fellow legislators.

So, what is the evidence that there may be a genuine shift going on in the rhetoric? Here are the examples of Republicans expressing their anger about the misrepresentations about their goals and activities.

When Hyperbole Becomes Reality

 

Remember the good old days when we rolled our eyes and protested with annoyance at the exaggerations that the Left repeatedly spewed? We assumed they did it to demonize those of us on the Right, to upset us, and cause us to react defensively at their hyperbole and distortions. And of course, to some degree that was precisely what they were doing. And eventually, we reached a point where we grew accustomed to their misrepresentations because no one was in a position to stop them. Yes, some of us protested their statements—some of the politicians, the few journalists on the political Right, and those of us on Ricochet. But for the most part, the media repeated these attacks, happy to be in the ranks of the Left.

Terms like Nazis, concentration camps, cruelty to children, bigotry, the influence of the rich were all terms used to discount and discredit the people on the Right. Their contrived reputation of us as racists, the enemy, fascists, white supremacists, and the like were often used to condemn our criticisms of the strategies of the Left. When we called out “fake news,” we were called enemies of the state and destroyers of democracy. The attacks have become a normal part of the rhetoric of the Left. The word “hyperbole” has no place in their vocabulary, and they continue to try to destroy those who do not buy into their ideology or accept their lies and distortions.

The irony of their words and actions is that hyperbole has been transformed into today’s political reality. Only the attacks of the Left on the Right to defame and demonize us have emerged as definitions of the Left: they have become everything they accuse us of.

How Not To Be a Press Secretary

 

Case in Point: Unforced Errors by Jennifer Psaki

“How To” books are a dime a dozen and cover every imaginable topic, or so it seems. But one might think another genre would also be popular, even important: “How Not To” publications. That advice can often prove more valuable. It can at least help one avoid missteps.

Lying to Ourselves

 

We have a problem with our federal government, but it’s not exactly the one we’re used to thinking about. Frankly, we don’t want to think about it all – better to deny the reality entirely.  Easier to lie and lie and lie, and blame our problems on everyone else.  Easier to blame Liberals, or Wokesters, or (the current favorite among the increasingly reality-averse folks who still cannot face that Trump has immolated himself once and for all time) traitors and sabotage.  It is, of course, all lies.  Mind you, lies can be useful – especially when trying to avoiding hurt feelings (our own not the least), but they’re still lies.  At one time rebellions against ruling monarchs favored the lie “We’re not really rebelling against the King, he’s just the victim of bad advisors.” 

The lie we all tell ourselves today is that we are the helpless victims of “The DC Establishment” (or whatever other term you want to use).  Synonyms for this include “Wall Street,” “Big Tech,” and a host of others.  They are the “bad advisors” we blame for manipulating Congress, for stealing elections, or for disloyalty to Trump (fact check here: the only consistent disloyalty in the Trump administration came from Trump – watching his cabinet members go from vaunted heroes to filthy traitors and sellouts in the commentariat was much akin to studying Soviet photography for disappearing faces alongside Stalin).  We are very good at lying to ourselves about why Trump lost this or that political battle, about why Congress is a dysfunctional mess, and about why the “authoritarian ratchet” is inexorable.  The truth we cannot confront about it is all is simple, and we all bear the shame of it.  We do not really want any of our congress critters, our president, or our courts to lead us out of our morass, we want them to follow us into the pit of our own making.  And follow they blithely do.

The Outrageous Hypocrisy of the Media

 

This morning I was nearly spitting teeth when I saw the main editorial from the Editorial Board of the Orlando Sentinel. (We subscribe only to the Sunday paper which entitles us to the weekly e-newspaper; I like their puzzles page.) The title was “Election Day 2020: A Referendum on Truth.” It was an attack on President Trump.

Seriously?

Yes, it was an editorial. It focused only on “Trump’s Lies” during his administration. It listed several sources of information, like their colleagues at the Washington Post and the New York Times.

Book Review: Live Not By Lies

 

To grasp the threat of totalitarianism, it’s important to understand the difference between it and simple authoritarianism.  Authoritarianism is what you have when the state monopolizes political control.  That is mere dictatorship – bad, certainly, but totalitarianism is much worse.  According to Hannah Arendt… a totalitarian society is one in which an ideology seeks to displace all prior traditions and institutions, with the goal of bringing all aspects of society under control of that ideology.  A totalitarian state is one that aspires to nothing less than defining and controlling reality.  Truth is whatever the rulers decide it is.  As Arendt has written, wherever totalitarianism has ruled, “[I]t has begun to destroy the essence of man.”⁠ (pages 8-9)

Many have fought and endured Hard Totalitarianism – repression at the end of a rifle – and while we may have (for now) seen the back of such regimes, Rod Dreher warns, in his new book Live Not By Lies: A Manual for Christian Dissidents, that we are facing a new form of totalitarian repression.  This new form, he warns, will not (for now) come at the ends of rifle barrels and the points of bayonets, nor will it come all at once.  It will come gradually, and it will attempt to corral us not with overt force, nor even fully from our government, but through the mounting pressures, nudges, and unseen pushes and constraints of the very technologies we rely on and willingly install in everything in our lives.  Dreher predicts the emergence of a Soft Totalitarianism which will resemble the Social Credit System of the People’s Republic of China, created by an alliance of ideological interests from the technology, information, and banking industries.  This new totalitarianism will be radically hostile to any religion, creed, or understanding of the world that conflicts with its own, and especially towards Christianity, which it slanders as repressive and “hateful”, especially on matters of sex and race.  How can we recognize it?  Can we fight it?  How do we survive and endure it without compromising?  Rod has much to say.

Rod Dreher is, by his own frequent admission, something of an odd duck in American conservatism.  His first book, Crunchy Cons, was about people very like himself – the heterodox conservatives who find themselves on the political right, usually for deep-seated social concerns (religion, family, tradition, anti-corporatism), but who also find that these core values are ignored, or else clash with other conservative orthodoxies on matters like free markets or foreign policy.  Dreher is also especially known for being one the leading reporters to blow open the sexual abuse scandals of the Roman Catholic Church, and unearth how deeply that rot actually ran – the integrity of the Christian faith is important to Dreher.  His prior book, The Benedict Option, was a statement to Christians that they have lost the culture war and need to rebuild the foundations of faith and society, with instructions on how to begin this process through intentional community formation – as such it is like a book warning on how to prepare for a cultural tornado, and clean up afterward.  Live Not By Lies can be therefore likened to a warning on what cultural tornado will do, how it will act, what it will try to destroy, and how to survive during it with one’s soul intact.

Join Jim and Greg as they discuss how the final debate was much more pleasant to watch and far more substantive than the first one. They also dissect Joe Biden’s many lies in the debate – from saying he never promised to ban fracking to suggesting that the Hunter Biden laptop story is just Russian disinformation to inexplicably contending no one lost their private health insurance plans because of Obamacare. And they appreciate many lefties revealing just how little they know about immigration policy by misunderstanding and mocking Trump’s reference to “coyotes” smuggling kids across the border.

Who’s Died?

 

The more misleading information about Covid-19 that is published, the angrier I’m becoming. Here’s one of the latest lead paragraphs to one story :

A coronavirus outbreak centered at the White House has exploded in the week since President Trump said he tested positive on October 2. At least three dozen people so far are known to have contracted the virus, but the true number is unknown absent a running update from the White House. Instead, reporters have tapped sources and otherwise relied on the infected to come forward in order to gain a fuller portrait of the disaster. The outbreak has grown so vast that it has apparently infected everyone from unnamed federal employees to senior Pentagon leaders. Here is a running tally of those known to be infected (italics mine).

Disingenuous would be a generous way to describe the information described in this story. Dangerous and treacherous might be a better choice of words. Why do I say that?

It’s Trump’s Fault!

 

It’s bad enough that we have to question just about everything the media tells us. They refuse to report the facts on the cities being trashed by rioters, characterize federal law enforcement in cities as the actions of a dictator, and one of the latest insults came from Nancy Pelosi calling COVID-19 the “Trump Virus.” I guess I should have seen that one coming; we’ll probably hear the media saying it’s only right to name it after Trump, since he appears to be regularly calling the virus the “Chinese Virus.” You know, tit-for-tat.

Lately I’ve been especially concerned about the distortions that the media is promoting regarding COVID-19. I’m perplexed at their willingness to mischaracterize just about everything about the virus: how children respond to it, which children are spreaders, whether schools should be re-opened, which drugs are effective and how they are best used, death and hospitalization rates versus cases. They try to create the most alarming narrative that they can, and people are terrified. It’s one detestable thing to lie about things that Trump has said and done, but why would they be terrorizing the American public, when people are literally concerned about who will live or die?

Member Post

 

During the COVID-19 shutdown, how many political leaders have claimed legitimacy because they are using the “Science and the Data”? For many people who crave certainty, the experts reassure them that they are receiving information they can rely on, in making the important daily decisions of their lives. As the lockdown continues in some states, […]

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Anti-Tobacco Fanatics Lie like a Cheap Rug

 

Yes. They lie. Their lies, coming from allegedly left and right (social conservative) positions, are swathed in “good intentions” and focus on “the children.” Yet, any citizen, any member of Congress, any judge, Article II or Article III, and any president who has merely been alert to their environment as they walked past, at least, a hotel bar, knows the basic claim is a flat-out lie. Why? See for yourself:

Impeachment 2020: A Lifetime of Education

 

The curtains are about to come down. The audience is leaving the auditorium, shaking their heads either in dismay or victory, having seen the whole show. Even if they see the play again, they will never see anything quite like what was presented in this arena.

It has all been like a show. Yet, the impeachment inquiry and trial have been an education like I would never have imagined. It will take a while for me to fully digest what I have witnessed. But this is my first take . . .

John Bolton and the Leaked Manuscript

 

Just when we could see the impeachment trial winding down as the President’s defense team squashed the House Managers, we learn that the John Bolton manuscript of his new book has been leaked. What a shock. The manuscript has not been quoted and the references to it have been vague. (The NY Times article is behind a paywall.)

The manuscript was sent to the National Security Council’s Records Management Division for a “standard prepublication security review” on December 30, in the belief that no classified information was included. Over the weekend, the information was conveniently leaked to the New York Times. Yet there was this report:

Sarah Tinsley, an adviser to Bolton, told Axios that the former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations sent the draft manuscript only to the White House for a prepublication review by the National Security Council. ‘The ambassador has not passed the draft manuscript to anyone else. Period,’ she said.

It’s a bleak search for good news on the Three Martini Lunch.  Today, Jim and Greg cringe as reports show the federal government has been flailing unsuccessfully for a sound policy in Afghanistan, lying to the public about what’s been achieved, and wasting an obscene amount of taxpayer dollars.  They also react to the mass shooting committed by a Saudi military officer at Pensacola Naval Air Station Friday, in what increasingly appears to be an act of Islamic terrorism.  And they roll their eyes hard as the Democratic counsel for the House Judiciary Committee claims his young son asked him a deep and probing question about the character of the president.

Bombshells are Repeatedly Busts: Republicans Need to Take Charge of the Narrative

 

The unfolding of the impeachment saga sounds like a very poorly written detective story, where the Left already knows who committed the crime. But the Democrats are still trying to re-write a story that the public will swallow. It’s not going well.

This story required dozens, maybe hundreds, of bureaucrats, who were delighted to be led along in the Trump impeachment story. It’s not difficult to understand why those who have been interviewed are so angry (since Trump violates everything about their Leftist agenda), but their determination to indulge in lies and distortions is revolting and even bewildering. They have decided to be “strung along” and assist in the writing of the detective story because they hate the supposed perpetrator.

They may be successful in impeaching Trump, and they will also be successful in destroying any respect that citizens may have held for the Democrat party.

Quote of the Day: Lies

 

“But it is not the lie that passeth through the mind, but the lie that sinketh in, and settleth in it, that doth the hurt” — Francis Bacon, “Of Truth”

Which are the lies that pass through the mind and which are those that sink in? In the latter category, I’d put:

Are You a Political Warrior?

 

When I first came to Ricochet, I was baffled at how people engaged so seriously in political discussion. I mean, it’s just politics—right?

As discussions got especially rabid and polarized over the entry of Donald Trump, I found myself feeling compelled to take sides. At the same time, I was trying to keep up with the destructive efforts of the Left and the media. What in the world was going on?

The Left Knows ‘Exactly’ What Trump Said

 

We are experiencing the worst case of confirmation bias in this presidency that we’ve ever seen. Due to the extreme nature of its appearance and the rage with which it’s expressed, we should be very concerned. Let me explain what confirmation bias is:

Confirmation bias occurs from the direct influence of desire on beliefs. When people would like a certain idea or concept to be true, they end up believing it to be true. They are motivated by wishful thinking. This error leads the individual to stop gathering information when the evidence gathered so far confirms the views or prejudices one would like to be true.

Once we have formed a view, we embrace information that confirms that view while ignoring, or rejecting, information that casts doubt on it. Confirmation bias suggests that we don’t perceive circumstances objectively. We pick out those bits of data that make us feel good because they confirm our prejudices. Thus, we may become prisoners of our assumptions.