Trump and his camorra lie and defend their lies with more lies. They deal not in truth, but in alternative facts, which are nothing but lies. Their behavior and the environment they have created is a frightening patchwork of lies, naked arrogance, and abuse of power and position to suppress free speech and enrich themselves.
It’s no wonder that George Orwell’s “1984” is currently Amazon’s bestseller.
My fear is that Trump’s coterie of vultures is buying the book thinking it is an instruction manual.
Will Trump create a Ministry of Truth? While truth seems to be anathema to the current administration, Orwell’s Ministry of Truth was dedicated to creating alternative history that supported the party line. Perhaps Trump will create a Ministry of Alternative Facts with the same mission.
In Winston Smith’s London, “nothing is illegal, since there were no longer any laws…” Trump and his gang of sycophants and plutocrats have given ample evidence that they think nothing is illegal if it will enrich them or enhance their power. Witness the delays in providing financial disclosures, Trump’s personal refusal to release his tax returns, the failure of Trump and several appointees to divest themselves of properties and income which bring them into a real conflict of interest and perhaps put them in violation of the emoluments clause of the Constitution.
Trump and two highly visible spokespersons seem masters of “doublethink,” a feature of Winston Smith’s musings. Trump claimed that God stopped the rain specifically for Trump’s inaugural address, and that the sun came out. Both are lies. It rained on his speech, and the rest of the day in DC was overcast. His press secretary made clearly false and contradictory statements about the size of the crowds at the inauguration; a spokeswoman later declared those not to be untruths (i.e., lies) but “alternative facts” (i.e., lies).
Trump’s rhetoric (the art of effective or persuasive speaking or tweeting) nicely fits Winston Smith’s description of the speech during the “Two Minute Hate”—“so exaggerated and perverse that a child should have been able to see through it, and yet just plausible enough to fill one with an alarmed feeling that other people, less level-headed than oneself, might be taken in by it.”
There have been reports that some of Trump’s supporters have begun to question whether they were right to support him, and that some have left his camp. Not to fear. As Winston Smith said, “Always there were fresh dupes waiting to be seduced by him.”
It’s not hard to draw parallels between the Trump administration and the world of 1984. While the latter may seem implausible, even impossible, it is neither.
All quotations from “1984” are from the Kindle edition, downloaded 2017-01-25.
Trump and his people’s actions that I compare to themes from “1984” were taken from multiple news sources. A Google search can provide many legitimate news sources as references.
Registered Curmudgeon, scientist, skeptic, humanist, and writer.