All politicians lie and exaggerate. However, the Biden campaign lies so brazenly that it indicates ominous collaboration with mainstream media.
Just like all other politicians, President Donald Trump is often careless about accuracy. However, he is usually directionally true but adds on some extra bacon to make his message juicier, much like a used car salesman.
As a hypothetical for instance, most would not be surprised if, after having recovered with apparent ease from COVID-19, Trump declares that “many people say that I have the best antibodies ever.” If you are a Trump supporter, you will immediately recognize that it has the ring of Trump to it, and you would chuckle at its charming, kindergarten-like shamelessness.
You would also immediately be able to see through the hyperbole and translate it into a factual statement: Trump has a robust immune system and now has developed potent antibodies that will protect him well. However, when Trump makes a statement that is so easily falsified by the fact-checkers, he is likely doing it on purpose to provoke the media into fact-checking him.
The strategy is to trigger the media to break its conspiracy of silence and force them to write about facts they otherwise muzzle. Often, the only way Trump can get the truth out to the American people is to exaggerate.
In the above example, the media would correctly find that Trump’s antibodies probably are not the “best ever.” Still, in so doing, they would have to tell the American people that he recovered swiftly and without complications at age 74.
The media and those who oppose the president have an interest in maximizing fear of the Chinese coronavirus. In a 24-hour news cycle, panic and crisis keep the wheels turning. Trump has found a way to penetrate the wall of misinformation – by strategically lying about details.
Compare this to the technique employed by former Vice President Joe Biden and Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA). They also lie, but unlike Trump, their lies are so outrageously opposite of the truth and so easily debunked that it implies that they rely on the media’s conspiracy of silence.
The most famous recent example of this is the “fine people” hoax, in which Biden and Harris push the easily-debunked conspiracy theory that Trump, who has Jewish grandchildren, called neo-Nazis in Charlottesville “fine people.” A simple internet search shows that he clarified that “I am not talking about the neo-Nazis and the white nationalists because they should be condemned totally.”
Another example is Harris’s claim, during the vice-presidential debate, that President Abraham Lincoln did not appoint a Supreme Court justice just before an election because he wanted to allow the people to decide. It turns out that this is a pure fabrication. Historian and Lincoln-expert Professor Michael Burlingame said: “I’ve never seen anything like that quote in all my 36 years of Lincoln research.”
Biden and Harris must know that their outrageous lies are easily debunked, and they must also know in advance that most mainstream media outlets will rarely, if ever, fact-check those lies.
The result is that roughly half of the American population lives in a misinformation bubble, believing brazen lies that take 15 seconds to debunk with a simple internet search.
Conspiracy of Silence
Whereas Trump exaggerates to break the media’s conspiracy of silence to force them to let some of the truth seep through, the Biden campaign relies on media collaboration to allow them to push pure fiction as reality.
Read more from Onar Åm.