Trump ascends to meta-lying: making stuff up about making stuff up

Trump now feels he’s hit his stride as president. Now he’s really strutting his stuff, feeling his oats, his instincts comfortably in the driver’s seat. It’s clear from his latest farrago of actions, lashing out unrestrainedly in every direction. The one thing he’s learned — the only thing — is that however he behaves, there are no bad consequences. So it seems to him, and so far it actually seems basically true. His “shooting-someone-on-Fifth-Avenue” line grows more apt by the day.

Republicans, at least, are so strapped in to this roller coaster ride that they can’t get off no matter what stomach-churning twists and turns it takes. So now there are no checks — internal or external — on Trump’s id-based impulses. He’s broken out of his crib; his baby-sitters are powerless.

Last week there was consternation over a Trump speech at a Missouri fund-raiser, talking about his meeting with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. Here are Trump’s actual words (my emphasis): “Trudeau came to see me. He’s a good guy, Justin. He said, ‘No, no, we have no trade deficit with you, we have none. Donald, please.'” (Trump mimicked Trudeau’s voice.) “Nice guy, good-looking guy, comes in — ‘Donald, we have no trade deficit’ . . . I said, ‘Wrong, Justin, you do.’ I didn’t even know . . . . I had no idea. I just said, ‘You’re wrong.’ You know why? Because we’re so stupid . . . . And I thought they were smart. I said, ‘You’re wrong, Justin.'”

According to the U.S. Commerce Department, in 2017 we had a $2.8 billion trade surplus, in goods and services, with Canada.

Many observers were shocked, shocked, that a president would meet with a foreign leader, discussing our trade relations, without even being prepped with the most basic fact about it. Even more shocking was Trump’s just making it up, asserting something he knew might well be false (which it was). And more shocking still that he’d publicly brag about behaving so irresponsibly. As though his tale might somehow be endearing — like a child giggling about his cute mischief.

This is the guy who’s rushing to negotiate with Kim Jong-un about nuclear weapons. (Who couldn’t even successfully negotiate a hush deal with a porn actress.)

But wait. It actually gets worse. How could it possibly be any worse? It turns out the Canadian government doesn’t know what meeting Trump was talking about. Apparently, it never happened — fake news. He lied about lying to Trudeau. As columnist Kathleen Parker commented, “Not only do weary researchers have to check Trump’s ‘facts,’ but now they also have to check his facts about fictions.”

Call it meta-lying.

One Response to “Trump ascends to meta-lying: making stuff up about making stuff up”

  1. Robert Says:

    The artifacts of Trumps brain.

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