Trump’s lawyers proceeded in the impeachment trial with the same rhetorical technique Trump and his supporters use: they flat-out lied. Clearly, they were not trying to get at the truth but were instead trying to create sound bites for right-wing media, the same way Trump and the rest of his cabal convinced supporters of the big lie that he had won, rather than lost, the 2020 election. In that case, they lied consistently in front of the media, but could not make anything stick in a courtroom, where there are penalties for not telling the truth.
Misinformation is about structuring the lie, the fiction to be taken as true. When the people who are holding the mic are building a false narrative the goal can be to get pieces of a lie read into public record. So that it can be stitched together with other pieces and spread.
Tiffany Trump is not the most prominent or politically adept of the President’s children, but her speech at the Republican National Convention last week served as a succinct summation of the event’s key messages. Donald Trump is a giant among Presidents, protecting the country and keeping his promises. His reëlection is a contest between freedom and oppression. Yet he’s subject to hatred, Tiffany said, because so many people have been “manipulated and visibly coerced” by the media and tech companies that present a “biased and fabricated” version of reality. “Ask yourselves, why are we prevented from seeing certain information?” she urged viewers. The answer is “control.”
She was far from the only speaker to have discerned a connection between attempts to deceive the American people and efforts to subdue them. On Thursday night, when her father accepted his party’s nomination, he did the same, saying, “They are coming after me, because I am fighting for you!” Kimberly Guilfoyle, a former Fox News journalist who is Donald Trump, Jr.,’s partner, loudly warned about “cosmopolitan élites” who “want to control what you see and think and believe so that they can control how you live.” Richard Grenell, the former acting director of National Intelligence, said that Trump’s opponents “never want the American people to know who’s actually calling the shots.”
I don’t think it’s the lies we have to fight against, rather it’s the narrative that gives people an excuse to vote in a way that protects their interests (or what they see as their interests) at the expense of democracy, fairness, and inclusion.
I believe this means we have to provide a counter narrative that is equally attractive and let’s people change, save face, and join together. Not be in opposition.