Trump has a funny way with crowds. At his press conference today he claimed that there were thousands in London cheering for him, waving American flags, and only a small ‘rentacrowd’ of protestors. Reports of large numbers of the latter, he claimed, were ‘fake news’. The truth, of course, is the opposite. One is reminded here of his statements about his inauguration turn-out. He also, incidentally, at the same press conference, repeated an earlier lie about his having predicted the result of the Brexit referendum before it happened. He didn’t.
It would be useful – and may be crucial – to know whether he really believes all this. Could he have been so sheltered from reality, or so consumed by conspiratorial thinking – believing that the BBC is now part of the MSM that’s out to get him – as to genuinely hold this alternative view of events? If so, doesn’t that make him psychologically and intellectually weak? (Or, if you like, mad.) If not, of course, it makes him one of the greatest liars ever to have bestrode (bestridden?) the international stage. That could be because he really doesn’t have any regard for ‘facts’, except insofar as they can be manipulated for his purposes, or in order to conform to his prejudices and boost his fragile self-regard. (A bit like his friend Boris.) Or, thirdly, it could be because he’s aware of the lies, but knows how well they can play for him with his ‘base’ back home, even when – as in this case – they’re so easily disproved. That would make him immoral, but cleverer. I think I’d almost prefer that.
I’m sure that this has been debated in the USA for months.