Monthly Archives: October 2016

“Words, words, words”


My previous article posted October 10, 2016 and titled A Plague on Both Your Houses was generated by my revulsion to a vicious lie. I specifically dealt with only one of the two presidential candidates because the lie was beyond politics as usual. But in terms of the other candidate, the title of that article speaks for itself.

Now I’d like to reveal another kind of lie. This time it is about our Fourth Estate. This time it is about the abuse of free speech. This time it is about subtext that is deliberately designed to trick a reader into thinking what he is reading means something other than the actual text. This time the lie is the “smoke and mirrors” of dishonest wordsmiths. A not so subtle but perfect example of their dishonesty follows.

On October 23 AOL writes: Among Democrats and Democrat-leaning likely voters, 88 percent said that Clinton won the (third) debate. An overwhelming majority of Republicans and Republican-leaning likely voters, 77 percent said that Trump won the (third) debate. [underlines mine]

My question: Why is 77 percent overwhelming while 88 percent is not!

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A Plague on Both Your Houses


For obvious reasons I have no intention of voting for either Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton. I don’t feel guilty about not voting because New York is not a swing state, so my single vote is of no consequence.

I’m also aware that conflicting political lies are (as always) rampant on both sides of the aisle, and that in the long-run they are a wash. But through the many decades that I’ve heard all kinds of political lies from partisan advocates, those that are most disturbing to me are vicious lies. Clinton is guilty of such a lie.

If you are a voter in a swing state and pondering on whether or not Clinton is trustworthy, this commentary will provide you with a definitive “no” in answer to that question. Of course knowing for certain that she is not trustworthy does not necessarily disqualify her from your vote. You may decide to vote for her because you prefer her over Trump whether she’s trustworthy or not, even if only because you believe she is the “lesser of two evils,” a common reason that millions of people vote for one candidate or the other.

The press and most social media have largely underplayed Clinton’s incredibly unfair lie. Although I’m not a political partisan, I’m compelled to provide you with the following information in the event that you are not aware of it.

A day or so ago, most media claimed that Donald Trump said veterans who suffer from Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) are weak (!). I thought, “That doesn’t sound right. Trump knows a statement like that would guarantee that he’d lose the election.” Later in the week, my speculation about the mainstream media’s deceiving claim was confirmed by two video clips I saw on TV.

The first video clip shows us what Trump actually said. (I would like to quote his words verbatim and entirely but could not find either clip online.) In response to a question he was asked about aid for veterans who suffer from PTSD as a result of their war experiences, Trump was unmistakably sympathetic to their suffering. Part of his response was that while some people “in this room” (a press session?) may not necessarily be mentally injured by PTSD resulting from war experiences, other people (veterans) may suffer from PTSD and that those disabled veterans should receive aid. His message was absolutely clear. It was unequivocally sympathetic to and in favor of helping PTSD veterans. Explicitly or implicitly, Trump absolutely did not call PTSD veterans “weak.” Nevertheless, “Weak” was the media’s spun buzz word.

The second clip was that of Clinton who, along with much of the media, blatantly distorted what Trump said. Clinton didn’t simply ‘imply’ that Trump’s full statement was one of indifference to those disabled veterans. Nor did she simply misunderstand Trump’s position on aiding them. She deliberately lied by distorting Trump’s words beyond recognition and spun them into the opposite of Trump’s actual statement. The tone of her voice was one of deep indignation, a lie in and of itself. That lie is not just run-of-the-mill politics. It’s an unforgivable kind of lie.

[Note: While watching the second presidential debate, I noticed that in her list of reasons for Trump’s unfitness to be president she included his ‘indifference’ to “the disabled,” By avoiding the word “veterans” she safely removed any reference to the real veterans’ incident and at the same time shrewdly implied that she was referring to all the disabled. That is the act of an expert liar.]

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