Does Even Trump Believe What He Says?
There is no doubt President Donald J. Trump talks and writes more about what he thinks at any given moment in time than any other president in American history.
Cascading out daily are buckets full of words, either spoken or tweeted.
Some of these words make sense to some.
Other seem silly to many.
The majority seem inane, sad, or contradictory to most.
It is safe to assume that not even egocentric Donald Trump himself thinks everything he says or tweets can, should or will be believed or taken seriously by all.
A case in point is a lengthy piece in this month’s Atlantic Magazine , which alleges that a lot of the things Trump instructs his White House staff to immediately implement are simply ignored by them until they are ultimately forgotten by Trump.
In addition, there are hints Trump understands that when he utters certain phrases to his staff like “believe me,” he means it as a ‘tell’ to them that they ought not believe what he’s said at all.
Someday historians will have the responsibility of combing through which of Trump’s hundreds of thousands of utterances and ramblings he really believed when he said them, and which comments were merely foolish blunderbuss uttered to confuse or obfuscate his real thoughts from the press, the public, and his enemies.
For example, did Trump really believe it when he first said Mexico would not only build a southern wall for the United States, but they would pay for that wall as well?
Did Trump really believe it when he first claimed after he’d won the Electoral College that not a single person in his 2016 campaign had any contact with anyone from Russia either before, during or after that election campaign?
Did Trump really believe it when he repeated inaccurately and ad nausea that while the Mueller investigators consisted entirely of 13/15/18/20 angry Democrats and thus were hopelessly biased against him, Mueller completely cleared he, his son, and his campaign of both collusion with the Russians as well as obstruction of justice in the investigation?
Did Trump really believe it when he insisted that former Secretary of State and Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry ought to be arrested and charged by the Justice Department for treason for violating the Logan Act?
Did Trump really believe it when he falsely claimed that it was China, and not U.S. consumers, who would end up paying for his new increased tariffs on that nation?
Did Trump really believe it when he claimed to others that the King of Saudi Arabia had broken with longstanding Saudi tradition when he wouldn’t stop kissing his wife Melania while everyone else at the event claimed the King merely briefly shook her hand?
Did Trump really believe it when he incorrectly argued that Puerto Rico had received $93 billion in disaster relief from his administration, way more than was given to Florida and Texas, when in fact that island nation had only received only a tiny fraction of that amount?
Did Trump really believe it when he incorrectly predicted that Iranian leaders would call him immediately to renegotiate a new nuclear deal once he’d broke the old agreement negotiated by his predecessor’s administration?
Did Trump really believe it when he told a large group of evangelical ministers during the National Day of Prayer service in the White House that he’d “gotten rid of” the so-called Johnson Amendment when in fact that provision in the law preventing non-profits from endorsing candidates remains the law of the land?
Did Trump really believe it when he claimed he still completely trusts dictator Kim Jong Un of North Korea despite his resumption of missile tests, which is in in direct contradiction to his promise to the U.S. made just last year?
Did Trump really believe it when he insisted that despite all evidence to the contrary that there was a direct link between undocumented immigrants and an increase in crime in the United States?
Finally, did Trump really believe it when he falsely claimed that former FBI Director James Comey and special prosecutor Robert Mueller were best friends and that he had seen ‘hundreds of photos’ of the two of them together at social settings.