Saturday, December 17, 2016

All Tactics All The Time

In a well written and thoughtful piece in the NYT, Masha Gessen points out that the "disagreement" between CIA/FBI and Trump/Putin on whether Russia intervened in the American election on behalf of DT "can feel deceptively substantive" and "when journalists are busy proving the obvious, they ignore the important questions. Arguing abut facts is, in fact, the ultimate distraction." No kidding!

The piece proceeds to describe what a meaningful discussion would look like, which is fine on the surface. But the key point here is the pattern of denial that Trump, Pence and their minions use as a tactic to stymie the functioning of democracy. They bring meaningful discuss to a hard stop by denying truths or making up stories that are outright lies. For them, Deny, distract, deflect, accuse is always on the menu. Denying obvious facts, which Trump has been doing for months,  is a tactic difficult to combat effectively. He says something, anything to distract from the issue at hand, makes a statement that deflects to a different issue entirely-though a rough connection in the mind can be made- and finally turns the entire discussion into an accusation against an opponent. To Trump, any observer who is truly objective, by the way, is considered a dangerous opponent. Unfortunately, the NYT has been slow to catch on to this reality.

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