One way for Trump and Pence to counter Democrat lies
I'm frustrated. While watching two recent debates, I heard both Joe Biden and Kamala Harris spout out lie after lie without being seriously challenged from the other side. They get away with repeating these smears because they tell media-sanctioned lies — ones they repeat over and over until they become part of the dominant narrative. These lies have been told so often and have come from so many different sources that they are now believed as the truth. So when Biden and Harris repeat those lies, they're never challenged, they don't have to defend themselves, and they suffer no consequences for it.
The frustrating part is that they effectively put the truth on the defensive. How do you confront the lie, told in both debates, that Trump paid only $750 in federal income taxes? All you can say is "That's not true! Trump has paid millions of dollars in taxes across dozens of business ventures in his life!" Or "That doesn't mean anything. All he did is use the tax laws that Joe Biden enacted to reduce his tax burden to the lowest amount possible, just as everyone else does." Those statements are true, but they're also defensive. Repeating these lies inside a leftist spin bubble always forces the truth to play defense.
I think there's a better way to deal with these lies, even the lies that have become part of the dominate narrative. We need to go on offense and put them on the defensive. Let me show you what I mean by quoting a long string of lies told by Harris during her debate with Vice President Pence:
And the reality of this is, that we are talking about an election in 27 days where last week, the president of the United States took the debate stage in front of 70 million Americans and refused to condemn white supremacists. And it wasn't like he didn't have a chance. He didn't do it, and then he doubled down. And then he said, when pressed, 'Stand back. Stand by.' And this is a part of a pattern of Donald Trump. He was — he called Mexicans rapists and criminals. He instituted as his first act a Muslim ban. He, on the issue of Charlottesville, where people were peacefully protesting the need for racial justice, where a young woman was killed and on the other side there were neo-Nazis carrying tiki torches shouting racial epithets, anti-Semitic slurs. And Donald Trump, when asked about it, said there were fine people on both sides. This is who we have as the president of the United States.
Pence did a decent job responding to this by pointing out that the media have taken Trump's quote out of context, but he was still playing defense. Explaining that Trump was talking about people on both sides of monument issue and that he can't be a Nazi because he has Jewish children is true, but weak.
There's a way to turn the tables on all the liars who thoughtlessly and automatically spew out the spin created by the media and put them on the defensive. For example, Joe Biden has said several times (including in his debate with Trump) that he was compelled to enter the race when he heard that "fine people on both sides" comment from the president. But if he had spent just two minutes listening to the president's full remarks, he would have learned that CNN and MSNBC distorted the quote to make the president sound racist. The recording is out there, and he can listen to it any time he wants. But here's my question for the Biden campaign: what other important decisions will Joe Biden make based on media spin? Will he form all his policies as thoughtlessly as this decision? Shouldn't the president base his decisions on something more substantive than a CNN report?
We can do the same thing with the other lies Harris told in that one comment. She said the president refused to condemn white supremacy, but he's condemned and denounced this several times over the last four years. She could have easily found that out, but she didn't take the time to investigate Trump's position on this. So here's my question: when the media report that a world leader said something, will the Biden administration draw up its policies based solely on that report, or will it investigate on its own and find out what he actually said? Our relationships with other nations shouldn't be based on an MSNBC hissy fit.
Harris also mentioned the Muslim ban and Trump's immigration policy and used that to call Trump a racist. But those policies were designed to protect the people of the United States from terrorists and criminals. Will the Biden-Harris administration shy away from protecting the county if their actions could be considered racist? Is that why they failed to stand up to the rioters across the country and even contributed to their bail funds? Based on just this one mini-rant by Harris, the American people have a right to know if they will put even a couple of minutes of thought into their policies or if they intend to be puppets of the media.
Serious leaders have to wrestle with complex truths while a petty tyrant will always run with a simplistic lie. Refuting the rhetoric of the lie with the complexity of the truth is tough to do and, like I said, it's always defensive. The better strategy is to use the spin against the liars by showing they can't be trusted with hard issues.
This same approach could be used on every position Biden and Harris have staked out: the Green New Deal isn't based on the complexities of climate science, it's based on the media's simplistic reporting on the environment; Biden's tax policy (whatever it is) isn't based on economics but on the media's assertion that the Trump tax cuts went only to the rich; Biden's mask mandate policy isn't following the science, it's following the panic created by a media that hates the President. Tell us, Joe, is that how you'll handle every decision? If the media shouts that Liechtenstein is a nuclear threat, will you immediately push the big red button?
Don't get me wrong. I'm not suggesting that Biden and Harris actually believe any of the lies they tell. I know they're just using them to advance their socialist agenda. But they can't refute the charge of being simplistic morons by admitting they're just using these lies as rhetoric to attack Trump and hide their agenda. Instead, they'll whine, they'll call us names, they'll try to silence this line of attack. But all we have to do is sit back and tell them to prove us wrong. Just play the full recording of Trump's Charlottesville comment and then have Biden explain how that strong denunciation of white supremacy inspired him to enter the race. Just show us the clinical studies that prove a universal mask mandate will stop the disease from spreading and save lives. Just look over all the things the Trump administration has done since the virus was shipped here from China and tell us what you would have done differently and how that would have helped. Just show us the studies that prove that high taxes and central planning will grow the economy. Just show us real proof that humans are destroying the planet (Al Gore's movie doesn't count as proof).
Every Republican candidate for any office starts off at a carefully designed disadvantage because every question they're asked, and all the acceptable answers, are based on relentlessly repeated media lies. The solution isn't to defend against those charges with well-prepared expositions of the truth. The solution is to turn the tables and force the other side to own every one of those lies.
Steve Matteucci has degrees in Economics, Law, Taxation, and Theology. His book, How to Be a Trustee: Practical Thinking on Settling a Living Trust, is available on Amazon.
Image credit: Screen shot from CSPAN via shareable YouTube.