Trump follows Fiorina and Carson down the rabbit hole of Big Lies

Big Lies take your breath away. They disqualify. No one should ever vote for a candidate who tells a Big Lie.

Carly Fiorina disappeared down the proverbial rabbit hole of Big Lies while searching for the mythical Planned Parenthood video that she claimed to have seen. Her last words before she disappeared were, “Watch a fully formed fetus on the table, its heart beating, its legs kicking while someone says, ‘We have to keep it alive to harvest its brain.’ ”

Dahlia Lithwick said,

The enormity of the fabrication surprised me; the fact that nobody had ever seen this extraordinary smoking gun before stunned me; the fact that not one of the journalists moderating the debate followed up on her claim surprised me. The fact that contemporaneous mainstream media reports of the debate—more theater criticism than journalism—failed to fact-check it surprised me. The people who did fact-check it all immediately agreed that it wasn’t true, and yet Fiorina’s word-picture was touted for days as the emotional zenith of the debate.

Ever the hero, Ben Carson took off after Fiorina. Before he disappeared down the rabbit hole of Big Lies, he waved his gifted hands urging everyone to follow him and shouted something about stabbing someone in the belt, hitting his mother with a hammer, the Chinese are in Syria, and he has better sources of intelligence information than the White House. According to Politifact, this is what he said in context about China.

Moderator Maria Bartiromo: “Dr. Carson, you were against putting troops on the ground in Iraq and against a large military force in Afghanistan. Do you support the president’s decision to now put 50 special ops forces in Syria and leave 10,000 U.S. troops in Afghanistan?”

Carson: “Well, putting the special ops people in there is better than not having them there, because they — that’s why they’re called special ops, they’re actually able to guide some of the other things that we’re doing there.

“And what we have to recognize is that Putin is trying to really spread his influence throughout the Middle East. This is going to be his base. And we have to oppose him there in an effective way.

“We also must recognize that it’s a very complex place. You know, the Chinese are there, as well as the Russians, and you have all kinds of factions there.”

Positively brilliant, except the Chinese are not involved in the Syrian conflict and his intelligence sources have denied telling him that. After thoroughly checking the story, Politifact concluded,

In context, Carson’s comments suggested a military presence. That claim appears to be lifted from unconfirmed blog posts and a news report by a Lebanese news site. China and the White House have denied that Chinese troops are in Syria, and experts told us there’s no evidence to the contrary. Even if Carson meant something less than a military presence, China seems to be taking a hands-off approach to the conflict in Syria.

We rate Carson’s claim False.

Not to be outclassed,  Donald Trump took off after Fiorina and Carson this weekend. As he dove head-first into the rabbit hole of Big Lies, he said he saw “thousands” of Muslims in New Jersey celebrating the collapse of the Twin Towers after the attacks on Sept. 11, 2001. Here is what he said when George Stephanopoulos interviewed him on ABC This Week,

It was on television. I saw it. It was well covered at the time, George. Now, I know they don’t like to talk about it, but it was well covered at the time. There were people over in New Jersey that were watching it, a heavy Arab population, that were cheering as the buildings came down. Not good.”

Politifact checked it out,

We looked back at the record to see what we could find about American Muslim celebrations in New Jersey on 9/11. While we found widely broadcast video of people in Palestine celebrating, we found no evidence to back up Trump’s description of events on American soil.

They concluded that the story is an urban myth

We conducted an exhaustive search of newspaper and television transcripts on LexisNexis, looking for reports from September 2001 through December 2001 that made any mention of Muslims in New Jersey celebrating the 9/11 attacks.

Regarding Jersey City, which Trump mentioned specifically, we found two uncorroborated and unsourced mentions.  Neither begins to approach the scale Trump described.

The Associated Press, on Sept. 17, 2001, described “rumors of rooftop celebrations of the attack by Muslims” in Jersey City. But the same report said those rumors were “unfounded.”

The Washington Post, on Sept. 18, 2001, published an article that claimed “law enforcement authorities detained and questioned a number of people who were allegedly seen celebrating the attacks and holding tailgate-style parties on rooftops while they watched the devastation on the other side of the river.” The Post story includes no source for this information, and we found no evidence that any of these allegations ever stuck.

A more rampant rumor of Muslim or Arab-Americans cheering the attacks centered around nearby Paterson, N.J. But that turned out to be just a rumor, spawned by chain emails and perpetuated by shock jock Howard Stern’s radio show.

The Star-Ledger reported that as the rumors spread, “Paterson police rushed to South Main Street, the center of the city’s Middle Eastern community.”

“When we got there, they were all in prayer,” Paterson Police Chief Lawrence Spagnola said.

Three percent of New Jersey residents are Muslim — the highest of any state — according to Pew Research Center. Suspected 9/11 terrorists had ties to Jersey City and Paterson. But there is no conclusive evidence that any New Jersey residents celebrated the attacks, and there is no evidence whatsoever of any demonstrations where “thousands and thousands of people” cheered.

Nor is there any evidence Trump saw these events play out in any way, be it on TV or in person. We reached out to Trump’s campaign but didn’t hear back.

These three clowns have been caught lying red-handed. Their lies are BIG Lies they told to win the Republican nomination for president. All three are unfit for public office.

Last, but certainly not least, Trump is demonizing all Muslims for political gain. That is what Hitler did when he demonized the Jews, and just like Hitler did to the Jews, he wants to force all Muslims to register with the federal government.

He has committed an unpardonable sin.

Never ever forget that because innocent lives and possibly your own life or the life of someone you love depends on it.

26 Responses to Trump follows Fiorina and Carson down the rabbit hole of Big Lies

  1. From Politico,

    Do not say you were not warned. Der Donald has warned you.

    Security is going to rule in America. And unthinkable things will be done.

    Don’t believe me? Ask him.

    “We’re going to have to do things that we never did before,” Trump says. “And some people are going to be upset about it. But I think that now everybody is feeling that security is going to rule.

    “And so we’re going to have to do certain things that were frankly unthinkable a year ago.”


  2. anita says:

    A Muslim lady was just interviewed on MSNBC. Her son was a 23 yr. old 1st responder on 9/11 & he was killed. She says trump is desecrating the memory of her son and so many others. She said , maybe trump should go back to Germany & practice his views. I’m wondering what crazy racist rant he’ ll come up with next. I cannot believe the sick followers he has. They must all be either stupid, full of hate, or both.

    • Definitely both. I saw that interview with the Muslim lady. She was right-on.

      BTW, Representative Keith Ellison from Minnesota called Trump a ‘prolific hater,’ and warned him that he was going to get somebody killed if he doesn’t stop with the racist rhetoric.

      Also: Bill O’Reilly, of all people, warned Trump not to retweet false racist data (in which a bogus chart said 84% of white homicide victims were killed by blacks when it’s actually 4%).

      • Rachael says:

        I saw that with Bill O’Reilly – I was amazed. Of course his response was, he doesn’t have time to check everything. Well he is running for the highest office in the land, if he can’t, he sure as HECK better have someone who can before he posts/tweets, retweets.

      • anita says:

        I saw that ridiculous chart yesterday. It’s just awful. When ass O,’Reilly calls someone out, we know how bogus their claim is. It’s just pitiful & shameful.

  3. Rachael says:

    He also used false statistics to paint black people as violent, citing a source that does not exist. He is a vile POS. But worse than just him, there are actually people who believe his crap, agree with him, follow him and vote. He isn’t a source of American embarrassment, as the “frontrunner for the highest job in the land – with absolutely zero experience and flaunting a ticket of unbridled bigotry, xenophobia, and misogyny – clealy shows everything that is wrong with the U.S.A.”

    • Malisha says:

      Trump is like a middle school bully who wants to be student body president and who is attacking others who want to be student body president instead. He’s “playing house” with a house that is not his and that he can very easily burn down with his pompous, negligent and outrageously stupid behavior. He mocks people rather than making arguments that contradict their points. Rather than insist that Carson never tried to stab anyone, he should have ended the argument (about whether Carson was “energetic” or not — an argument HE STARTED) by saying something dignified such as, “I really don’t think we should equate violence with energy; I have the energy to lead, not to perpetrate violence.” But no, he He makes up shit and screams to make his “points.” He’s unaware of real ramifications of real actions in the real world because he was born rich and dumb and he never had to adjust to anything that required proper behavior from him.

      • Rachael says:

        OMG – did you see his “poor me” thing a while back where he said he can totally relate to “regular” people. His daddy sent him off with $1 mil and he had to pay it all back. Poor guy. Now don’t get me wrong, it is wonderful that his daddy could do that for him, but well, YKWIM. He is – well there are no words for what he is. There are a lot of words I could say, but it wouldn’t come close. Surely, this can’t go on much longer.

    • gblock says:

      As with Carly Fiorina and the video that smears Planned Parenthood, there is s certain category of people who believes a false statistic like that because that is what they WANT to believe. In fact, they may have read the websites where false statistics like those originally appear, so they are all too happy to have their beliefs validated by having someone in the National spotlight like Donald Trump repeat them.

  4. Malisha says:

    I have friends who are Muslim, husband is an independent consultant and journalist (has reported for BBC, for al-Jazeera) and wife is a translator for the US Armed Services. They have two kids, now in college. The kids were little when 9/11 occurred and they were living in California. As soon as the news really hit, two sets of their neighbors (one Christian, one Jewish) came over and sat down with them to plan for their security and safety in case there was an anti-Muslim movement. The mother in the Jewish family decided that she was going to organize a group of moms to walk Huda and her children to and from school every day (Huda wears hijab) and other neighbors set up safety networks in case there were any threats. This is the kind of behavior civilized people demonstrate when there is trouble: protective, helping, reaching-out, neighborly.

    Another point: Instead of saying, “We have to be more belligerent because some terrorists killed people in France,” why aren’t we saying, “Wow, we must have a great president and a wonderful secretary of state because there haven’t been any ISIS attacks in New York when there were attacks in Paris! We’re doing GREAT! Let’s help France beef up their defenses; they can learn a lot from US!”

    • That’s a beautiful story about helping your neighbors and your second point about no terrorist acts in NY during their watch is a great point. Obama Derangement Syndrome assures that the right wing would overlook that.

      • Malisha says:

        Right. “Benghazi Benghazi Benghazi Benghazi” and forget about “New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Atlanta, San Francisco, Miami, Dallas, all OK, all OK, all OK.”

  5. Malisha says:


    A big lie (German: Große Lüge) is a propaganda technique. The expression was coined by Adolf Hitler, when he dictated his 1925 book Mein Kampf, about the use of a lie so “colossal” that no one would believe that someone “could have the impudence to distort the truth so infamously.” Hitler asserted the technique was used by Jews to unfairly blame Germany’s loss in World War I on German Army officer Erich Ludendorff.

    This (above) from Wikipedia.

    Right now, Repugnican politics consists of big lies and indignant outrage when the big lies are opposed. This is just bullying. It will turn into utter unredeemable tyranny.

  6. bettykath says:

    The Young Turks are reporting about a CNN reported who was suspended for 2 weeks for a tweet suggesting that the Statue of Liberty was hiding her face in shame after the House vote on limiting Muslim immigrants.

    • Malisha says:

      Yes, that happened. First Amendment rights are fine if you’re a bully; if you’re in the crowd of people BEING BULLIED, not so much.

    • Yes, CNN claimed that her tweet was “partisan.” I disagree because she stood up for a foundational principle of our country and that’s not a partisan political issue.

      As an aside, I spent a lot of time monitoring and commenting on the #Trump hashtag on Twitter and I was amazed by the number of right wing haters and their absurd claims that CNN is a liberal station pumping out liberal propaganda. MSNBC is as close as it gets to “liberal” and they ain’t liberal. Not by a long shot.

      • bettykath says:

        I tend to follow MSNBC (harder to do since they changed their format on the internet). They are definitely biased, but they tend to be closer to reporting factual information. (Or does it seem more factual because it’s closer to my own beliefs? Hard to tell.)

  7. bettykath says:

    There were confirmed reports of Israelis (3 or 4) cheering as the towers came down. They were there to film the event as they reported in an interview once they returned to Israel.

    Not that we actually elected him, but W was made president even though he had a long history of lying about just about everything, a passion he held onto while in the WH.

  8. gblock says:

    Trump has demonized undocumented immigrants coming into this country from Mexico and Central America for political gain, as well as Muslims.

    I don’t have any particular proof of this, but I strongly suspect that Trump was telling “big lies” long before the current campaign.

    As for Carly Fiorina and the Planned Parenthood lying video, the rabid anti-abortion crowd continued to find Fiorina’s reference to the video emotionally moving because they wanted something like that to connect to, true or not.

    • Sadly, we can keep Fiorina and Trump out of office, but the people that went down the rabbit hole with them tend to stay there despite shining light on their “heroes” activity . . . it’s truly difficult to convince supporters that Trump’s or Fiorina’s (or anyone else’s) facts are skewed even with unrefutable evidence.

      Employees of corporate-supported mainstream media aren’t able to take a stand unless they want to lose their jobs. They’re only useful in giving us a window to view all the shenanigans – so they depend upon our wisdom and discernment to sort it all out.

      If we want pushback, we depend upon bloggers like Fred and independent news outlets (mostly online, though there are alternative print sources, like local free press mags and newspapers, and a few national journals) to dispense the hard truth.

      Thank you, Fred and Crane!

  9. Trump retweeted a new racist BIG LIE yesterday that lists statistics made-up by a right winger who uses a swastika as his avatar. The false statistics support and perpetuate racist stereotypes about murders.

    Think Progress reports,

    Yesterday, Donald Trump tweeted a series of inaccurate murder statistics from the “Crime Statistics Bureau — San Francisco.” The bureau doesn’t exist and the statistics were fabricated. It appears the numbers were manipulated to perpetuate racism against African Americans. For example, the graphic claims that 81% of whites are killed by blacks. The actual percentage, based on the latest data from the FBI, is 14 percent.

    Trump really is dangerous.

  10. jsandero says:

    Good article… but the networks are cowards and in it for the ratings and revenue… truth and accuracy are not considered.

    • Yes, indeed. A good example of what you say is my comment with a link to the Think Progress article about Trump’s retweet. Check out the way most of the media has responded. That is, calling it controversial instead of false.

      Well. I’m going to do my best to make a difference with my blog

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