Donald Trump voters: We like the president’s lies
Donald Trump supporters in hardscrabble Ohio have finally figured out that he is lying — a lot. The truth is, they don’t care.
Sun., March 26, 2017
On the whole, Trump has never been viewed more negatively on matters of truth. A Quinnipiac University poll this week found that 60 per cent of Americans think he is dishonest, a new high. Time ran a cover story on Trump with the headline “Is truth dead?” The Wall Street Journal editorial board, long Trump-friendly, accused him of damaging his presidency with a “seemingly endless stream of exaggerations, evidence-free accusations, implausible denials and other falsehoods.”
Yet Trump has also managed a remarkable feat: maintaining a reputation among millions of Americans as a man of rare honesty at the same time as he launches an unprecedented daily barrage of Oval Office lies.
[ . . . ]
Charlie Sykes, the Trump critic and former conservative talk radio host in Wisconsin, says there is an “alternative reality bubble” within the right, created in part by conservative media. Trump, he said, is both developing and exploiting this “post-truth environment,” elevating once-fringe conspiracy theorists and propagandists who will then amplify his lies.
Well worth going over and reading the entire article – explains it very well with quotes from people expressing why they believe Trump even though they know he is lying.
These articles from 2010 and 2014 are examples of the right wing war on facts that has been ongoing for decades. An alternative fact bubble has not only been created but maintained that now alters what many Americans perceive as the facts about various subjects including science, history, the value of education and academics, economics, among many others.
An idea that has been promoted as well, is that facts are a matter of opinion and that one’s opinion changes what the facts are. In application, this means we have, in America, radio stations, right-wing controlled cable news / entertainment shows that have been telling Americans that facts are not only open to interpretation as to their value and meaning, but also that the facts themselves are based in opinion or essentially no more than an opinion and consequently, not facts at all.
Obviously, whether a person decides by opinion that rain is occurring – rain is nonetheless a fact and without some protection from it and good judgment based on that fact, that rain will continue as a fact with whatever dangers it represents. The only real thing that will happen considering rain that is occurring to be only an opinion, is for the person believing that to put themselves in unnecessary and predictable difficulties of getting wet, driving too fast for conditions and maybe harming their life and health or that of others – as a result.
In the two articles below, there are indications of this thrust to change facts, alter facts that are available concerning subject matter and erase the substantive value of facts as a critical foundation of reasoning and judgment. In climate science, the removal of the subject from text books, policy, agencies, websites, government research – does not change the facts about its impacts and dangers. It only makes our country less capable of mounting successful efforts to either positively influence those changes or to mitigate damages and harms that will occur as a result.
In economics and macro-economics, the same is true when the facts are deleted, altered, dismissed, discredited or denied. And, facts in every other arena and focus tend to the same result when treated as mere opinion rather than substance of reality.
Texas Conservatives Win Curriculum Change
As Trump targets energy rules, oil companies downplay their impact
Thursday, 23 Mar 2017 | 11:08 AM ET
President Donald Trump’s White House has said his plans to slash environmental regulations will trigger a new energy boom and help the United States drill its way to independence from foreign oil.
[ . . . a discussion from oil industry financiers that regulation change doesn’t impact them]
Refiners have also long complained that environmental regulations have stymied attempts to build new refineries and that they have borne the brunt of costly rules requiring them to blend biofuels into their gasoline.
Still, some energy analysts and regulation experts point out that the biggest drivers for these industries, too, tend to be supply and demand — not regulation.
The abundance of cheap natural gas is seen as the biggest obstacle to reviving coal country, since both fuels compete for space in the furnaces of U.S. power plants. For refiners, the key driver for profitability is the differential between the price of their raw material, crude oil, and the fuels they make with it.
“Supply and demand are the fundamental forces driving markets,” said Coglianese, the University of Pennsylvania law professor. “Regulation is relatively trivial.”
Trump’s ‘energy independence’ order expected to be pushed back another week
By 3/20/17 7:15 PM
The order is expected to end a de facto ban on building new coal power plants in the country, a moratorium on coal mining and the end of far-reaching climate regulations on states.
According to a draft copy of the “Energy Independence” executive order reviewed by the Washington Examiner, the first target on the menu will be the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan and New Source standard for power plants.
The draft order states that the power plan would cost $39 billion a year, based on a previous industry-funded study by NERA Consulting that the draft order cites to justify ending the Obama administration’s version of the plan,
[ . . . ]
The order also looks to rein in the New Source power plant standard, which the coal industry refers to as EPA’s de facto ban on building new coal plants. The regulation requires that all new coal plants be outfitted with expensive carbon capture technology, which the industry argues is cost prohibitive and makes building new coal plants next to impossible.
But since both climate rules are being reviewed in federal court, the Trump order also directs the attorney general to request all courts reviewing the climate rules to hold the cases in abeyance, or remand them back to EPA while the administration reviews them.
In addition, the order directs the Interior Department to lift its moratorium on issuing new coal leases to open up mining again.
It also calls for an interagency working group to “reconsider” the Social Cost of Carbon, which is the metric the Obama administration used to justify the cost of its regulations, while directing the White House Council on Environmental Quality to rescind an agency-wide directive by the Obama administration to include climate change in all environmental reviews of projects.
The Clean Power Plan is gone — and there’s no ‘replace’
Solve for ‘X’: Trump’s war on facts extends to undermining key federal statistics
How do you run an economy without statistics? Poorly, that’s how. But that’s what we’re in for if we muzzle and starve the agencies that gather this context — a fate that seems likely under the current management.
How tempting to gauge reality by self-fashioned yardsticks. Economists rightly worry that the Republican-led Congress and the Trump administration will do just that.
For years, Congress has been slashing budgets for gathering economic statistics — blithely acting as if calculating mass layoffs, worker pay and benefits, exports and imports, or income disparity between regions is a boondoggle.
A new president averse to facts he doesn’t like could further vandalize honest portraits of economic performance.
[ . . . ]
The consequences could be a federal government that ignores warnings of economic distress and makes misguided policy choices that leave millions of Americas the poorer for it. Calculated chaos — or, rather, chaos born of miscalculation.
Just this month, the Trump administration has embarked on distorting economic reality.
The White House privately has pondered changing the way trade balances are measured — to artificially balloon the size of U.S. trade deficits, the Wall Street Journal reported. Like magic, a $63.1 billion trade deficit with Mexico last year would become a $115.4 billion deficit.
Fabricated fears would be a call to arms for extreme policies on trade favored by the White House.
(etc. – well worth reading)