The Probability of Trump’s Truthiness on Russian Connections
How do I deceive you, let me count the ways? (A parody, due to the Valentine’s Day Past)
The Washington Post’s Fact Checker of “facts” in Trump’s campaign speeches got Pinocchios 80% of the time (mostly four or three Pinnochios). Clinton only achieved a 20% rating.
You can see while Trump is speaking and trying to state a fact, or opinion, or evaluation, or a narcissistic bragging point, that he is not satisfied with the statement close to the truth, and is weighing how much he can exaggerate it, and get away with it, at least to his loyal followers. He doesn’t care about what the established press says, since not only have his followers been turned off on the liberal press, by watching only Fox News for years, but from his now multiple daily press denunciations.
But to a still cognizant person listening, you have to establish a probability of truthiness to judge his claims, since you can’t possibly check all of his statements. You could read the few fact-finding sites or articles, but you know that the probability will still hover around 80% Pinocchios.
So, here’s the point: When Trump says that he has no connection with Russia or Russians, whatsoever, in the same news conference where he utters exaggeration after exaggeration, and denounces the “fake, dishonest” press dozens of times, how much probability of Truthiness should we assign this? Weight this by the fact that for two days, he has been saying that Lt. Gen. Flynn, his previous National Security Advisor, did nothing wrong by speaking to the Russian Ambassador to the US about US sanctions over the hacking of the Democrats’ computers.
I am usually a trusting person, but not in this case. We are always surprised to learn of Trump’s long term connections to many important or rich people, and his involvements in many, many countries around the world. It’s hard to imagine that he gave up after his initial attempts to build towers in Russia, his bragged profit of selling a Florida estate to an oligarch, his hiring of four campaign aides with Russian connections (including campaign head Paul Manafort, Michael Flynn, Carter Page, and Roger Stone), his appointment of Rex Tillerson, CEO of Exxon, and dealer with Russian oil and Putin, as Secretary of State, and his bending over backwards not to criticize Russia for hacking the Democrats’ computers, and his giving up Crimea and Eastern Ukraine to Putin, and mentioning the Russian speaking part of Estonia, that he has NO connection or communication with Russia or Russians. Give me a break!