This is nothing short of terrifying. A new ABC/Washington Post poll is out. Unsurprisingly, coronavirus is the fault line that the country is split along. Also unsurprising, but nevertheless chilling, is the fact that a large portion of this country is deluded into thinking that things are just fine, with respect to coronavirus. And those people are voting for Donald Trump.
What this boils down to is half the country is running on truth and half on disinformation — or maybe not half and half, but a substantial amount of people are totally in the dark, willfully in the dark, and are casting ballots from that position. That is why I used the word terrifying.
This is way beyond a partisan difference of opinion. This is a basic disagreement about what’s real vs. what’s not. We have never seen that before in this country. Many comparisons have been made between Trump and Nixon, but back in the Watergate era, there was not one news network claiming that the Watergate break-in never happened, or if it did, that it was engineered by a Democratic billionaire with nefarious motives. You get the idea.
I do not pretend to know what happened in this country, to make a large percentage of people prefer conspiracy theory and tabloid-level infotainment over basic facts, but the only reason Trump got elected in the first place is because that’s where we are. A great many people believed his fire hose of falsehood in 2016. Donald Trump has been waging a war on truth his entire life. He sold his freak show act to a large enough percentage of the American people, and that, coupled with Russian bots and a devastatingly effective 25-year-long disinformation campaign on Hillary Clinton, put him where he is. Some Trump voters have come to their senses, hopefully a majority. Maybe that’s too hopeful.
This graph is disturbing because it corroborates the fact that the United States is a shockingly dumbed down and uninformed country. We may have been a great nation at one point — hell, we were the first nation to send men to the moon. History will record that America was an exceptional country in its prime. History will also record the erosion of the educational system, the pernicious effect of television upon attention span and critical thinking skills, and how right-wing media like Fox News came to pollute the airways with partisanship mislabeled as news.
The graph is also shocking because the facts are so plainly out there. Even if a person would totally distrust all American media to report the truth, fine, go to the Toronto Star or the Guardian, or any number of other credible outlets all over the world. The facts are plain that we have the highest death toll from COVID-19 of any nation in the world. How even one sane person could think that this situation is “somewhat under control” or “completely under control” is beyond comprehension.
Donald Trump lives in a Tower of Babel constructed of lies. Every day he layers on yet more. Yet despite the obviousness of that fact, here’s another graph that appeared in a recent CBS poll.
This strikes me as apocalyptic. I can only pray that the better angels of our nature prevail and that, despite the attempted sabotage of the post office, Trump is resoundingly defeated in 78 days. My God, how did we get this stupid?