The Big Lie, The Greater Fool
What we’re seeing now is bald-faced deception that is no longer based in reality or supported by facts, and on a scale that is hard to process.
It’s hard to know just what to call the Republican Party’s willful abandonment of the truth. The current strategy of not just bending or twisting the truth to suit their needs, but the straightforward endeavor to tell us that the sky is green, that up is down, and that there is no man behind the curtain even when we clearly see him, is a new low.
Is it gaslighting? Next-level propaganda? Just good, old-fashioned lying? There’s nothing new about politicians lying. It’s like breathing for most of them. Kissing babies and kicking dogs.
It used to be held a little closer to the vest, or at least to the truth. We called it spin. We expected them to stretch or bend the truth, but not to abandon it altogether. We understood they were going to present themselves and their policies in the best possible light. It was showmanship. A version of the truth, but still close enough to recognize it.
What we’re seeing now is bald-faced deception that is no longer based in reality or supported by facts, and on a scale that is hard to process. They will deny the truth even when there is audio or video evidence to the contrary. They will pick will your pocket while you’re watching and then accuse you of being the thief.
There was already some of this going on, but really the flood gates were opened with the arrival of Donald Trump. He showed them that there was no downside to the brazen deception, the big lie. The bigger the lie, the better. The more lies, the better.
The CIA’s psychological profile defined Hitler’s use of the big lie this way, “His primary rules were: never allow the public to cool off; never admit a fault or wrong; never concede that there may be some good in your enemy; never leave room for alternatives; never accept blame; concentrate on one enemy at a time and blame him for everything that goes wrong; people will believe a big lie sooner than a little one, and if you repeat it frequently enough people will sooner or later believe it.”