Trump is an excellent and persuasive liar
He appears sincere. It is a gift.
Trump says things that are demonstrably and verifiably untrue. Sometimes he says contradictory things within seconds of one another. People believe him.
But there is a problem for Trump: others cannot do what he does.
He looks and sounds sincere. He speaks with emotion, extemporaneously, apparently from the heart. It is an extraordinary skill that fits the current political and media environment.
His current assertion that he has word that Obama wiretapped him — the outrage! — is the current case in point but an easier example was his five year long birtherism claim. He said he had evidence, he had investigators who were shocked by what they found, etc., but then he made a blunt assertion that he had nothing to do with the malicious claim other than to put a stop to the foolishness perpetrated by Hillary. He looked right at the camera and didn’t flinch.
Donald Trump sticks to his story. He is an actor committed to his role and people believe him.
Polls prior to election day showed Americans found Donald Trust to be more trustworthy than Hillary Clinton.
Donald Trump re-defined and clarified what it means to be an “honest politician.” Honest does not mean that what you say is accurate and verifiable and confirmed by independent third parties like the media. “Honest” means you actually believe what you are saying when you are saying it.
Hillary appeared to be speaking what she knew and understood. It was careful and crafted. Trump speaks extemporaneously, as if he actually means it, from the heart, with emotion.
Trump’s first month executive orders are an attempt to show he was “honest.” He is doing what he said he would do, directing agencies to stop enforcement of Obamacare regulations, banning Muslims from entry to America, abandoning the TPP. Keeping campaign promises defines honest.
The fact that what he is doing is controversial enhances his reputation for honesty. Trump does what he says he will do even amid criticism that it is unconstitutional, counterproductive, un-presidential, and unAmerican. A person who sticks to his promises, even in the face of it being criticized as objectively foolish, well, that is a sign of integrity and courage: political honesty.
What about his assertions that are objectively inaccurate, documented by videotape?
There is no such thing.
There is no credible third party, even his own prior statements, since the media is dishonest and full of fake news, and pollsters have been wrong, and experts are contradictory, and judges are biased, and the old rules failed regular Americans. He is assisted by his cheerleading media supporters at Breitbart and Fox News, who present his claims as true or at least plausible and possible (which they are doing currently with the assertion of Obama wiretaps.)
Trump appears sincere and firm and confident and adamant. His outrage is sincere and no one can tell him his facts are faulty.
This is a bold and successful strategy for Trump, but it is a dangerous one. Trump is endangering the GOP brand because not everyone can stand and deny “objective reality” and sell it. Trump’s skill is not transferable.
Who will put a stop to this? Not Democrats and not the media. Neither have credibility with un-engaged swing voters. What will stop Trump is the same thing that in the end stopped Richard Nixon in 1974: fellow Republicans.
Some of their motivation will be disgust and fear of what he is doing to the brand they carry. Some of it will be that they simply cannot feel right saying things they know are objectively inaccurate. They were trained as lawyers. Their instinct is to accept documents, to conform their thoughts to evidence. They just cannot sell it when they know they are lying.
And these are young men of ambition. Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, Tom Cotton, Ben Sasse, Paul Ryan have looked at the job. Older, richer men and told them they should be president. They have been humiliated by Trump. Trump has insulted wives, shown his contempt, gotten crowds of Republicans to rise to their feet as they cheer Trump’s disgust for them.
They are circling, watching, ready. They are young. They are aggressive. They have been trained in the best schools, trained to lead great enterprises, told they are very special people.
They know in their hearts that it is their destiny to have his job. They think not being a persuasive liar is actually a good thing.
[Check out my blog: www.peterwsage.blogspot.com I update it daily.]