Thursday, June 20, 2019

Populus vult decipi: How Another Trump Supporter Finally Sees the Light

by Nomad

During the 2016 election campaign, Kraig Moss followed Donald Trump all across the United States singing his praises- literally. Following the candidate from rally to rally, Moss strummed his guitar and belted out his pro-Trump ballads. He even recorded a CD with hits that included Save Our Nation, Build the Wall and Trump Train.

The Say-Anything President

As a mourning father of an opioid victim, Moss had his personal reasons for supporting the unlikely candidate. Trump's position on solving the epidemic had won Moss over.

Somewhere along the way, the soft-spoken Moss realized he had been conned. In 2017 alone, a year after the president took office, the opioid crisis raged on. In that year, it claimed nearly 50.000 American lives, more than 9/11 and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan combined.

At a rally in 2018, Trump claimed the numbers were "way down" after Congress allocated $6 billion to combat the crisis in 2018 and 2019, and the president requested another $7 billion for 2019. Like so many other failed projects, the president has declared victory and then lost interest.
But Trump's victories are never what they seem.
If the president meant overdose deaths, however, his claim was blatantly false. Data from the CDC show that, between 2016 and 2017, prescription opioid overdose deaths decreased by a mere 58 from 17,087 to 17,029. As for overdose deaths from opioids of all sorts (whether legal and doctor-prescribed or illegal, as with heroin), they increased by 12 percent.
On the campaign trail, Moss felt that Candidate Trump adroitly used his personal tragedy to help him get elected. At rallies, Trump -very publicly- consoled Moss from the stage and made promises to fight by opening treatment centers and expanding rehab programs. But, according to Moss, Trump as president soon forgot the promises he made.
That's when I first realized this is who he was. He didn't care about opioid addiction. He didn't care about health care.

Jumping Off the Bandwagon

Now that Moss is on the outside of the "cult," he sees the Trump phenomena very differently. 
The diehard Trump supporters.. will stop at nothing. They treat him like their losing football team. No matter what he does, no matter what he fails at, it doesn't matter. That's their guy.
The reality, Moss says, is something he had to discover for himself the hard way.
The truth of the matter is the president is like any other politician. He will look in somebody's eyes. He's very charismatic and he'll tell them what they want to hear so that they can jump on his bandwagon and vote for him. But in reality, you look at what he's gotten done and everything he's been trying to do has just failed.
And until they wake up, none of Trump's failures will matter to his hard-core base.

All this ties into a centuries-old Latin phrase (and a quote) I stumbled across just yesterday.
Populus vult decipi, ergo decipiatur, which means: The people wish to be decieved and therefore they are deceived.
And it is that desire, and its roots, that we need to address. Not the lies themselves, or even the liars, who are completely interchangeable.
Moss' defection might or might not represent any larger shift but a new NPR-PBS NewsHour-Marist poll has some bad news for the president.
Among Trump supporters, only about three-quarters say they will definitely vote for him. Nearly 20 percent of his supporters say they’re unsure whether they’ll back him in the next election. Like Moss, many, it seems, have finally seen the light.