Donald Trump

12 Blatant Lies in Trump's Speech to Congress That the Fact-Checkers Missed

Every problem can be solved, except the problem of presidential grandiosity.

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The New York Times fact-checked President Trump's speech to Congress and identified just one flagrant falsehood: that the families of people murdered by unauthorized immigrants have been "ignored by our media." The meager harvest of misrepresentations could mean Trump is getting better at sticking to a script or that he is gradually realizing his reputation for making shit up is not doing him any favors. Then again, maybe the Times is inured to the sort of blatant lies that all presidents tell. Here are some of the most obvious whoppers that the Times neglected to note:

  1. A new surge of optimism is placing impossible dreams firmly in our grasp.
  2. Dying industries will come roaring back to life.
  3. We will stop the drugs from pouring into the country.
  4. I am going to bring back millions of jobs.
  5. It will save countless dollars.
  6. Republicans and Democrats can work together to achieve an outcome that has eluded our country for decades.
  7. Action is not a choice; it is a necessity.
  8. Everything that is broken in our country can be fixed.
  9. Every problem can be solved.
  10. Every hurting family can find healing and hope.
  11. Our children will grow up in a nation of miracles.
  12. The time for trivial fights is behind us.

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  1. It always makes me mad when they talk about the president creating jobs.

    That’s not what the president is there for. He is there (like all politicians) to create an ecosystem where people can thrive: Rule of law, reasonable regulation, fairness. It is not the president’s sole purpose to meddle in the economy and “create jobs”. It’s a semantic trap that gets the government involved in all manner of stupid things.

    1. It’s not any part of a president’s purpose to meddle in the economy, nor is it Congress’s purpose. People in govt. seem to have this model of the economy that it’s this big machine with lots of knobs and levers, and all you have to do is have the “right people” manipulate those controls correctly to make the economy do good things. Not so. The economy is more like a brain, with many, many interconnected components, in which the connections change continuously in response to assorted stimuli. It is impossible to control. It might possibly be regulated in the 18th century meaning of the word: it can be “made regular,” be given a logical set of laws that help to enforce contracts, protect property rights, and remove impediments to its operation.

  2. More on the article: while I’m a huge Sullum fan, the article is a little disingenuous.

    These are actually conclusions made from faulty logic or false information. Not facts to be checked.

    That said I agree with the spirit of the article that Trumps speech was just a pile of fluff with no substance (much like his hair).

    1. Trumps speech was just a pile of fluff with no substance

      So, a typical political speech then. I’m glad I didn’t bother watching it.

  3. “The NYT fact-checked…” LOLOLOLOL Still bitter, Hillary fan?

  4. Jake how can you determine something is false when it hasnt happened yet?

    Most of these are vague tone and theme setting for optimism. Not sure how these are blatant lies

    1. Well. We’ll see how much the sunshine and rainbows version of Trump make it past his first late night Twitter meltdown.

      1. Ok that doesnt really make them lies except maybe 12. I am not sure what your point is to be honest

        1. Just trying to understand who the guy on stage was last night, versus the clown that we’ve all come to know and love.

          1. Maybe he is the new and improved Happy Gilmore…here comes the putter throw, hold it…

            1. +1 “The price is wrong, bitch!”

  5. Opinions cannot be fact checked.
    Other than that, a nice heart warming article about something.

  6. “You brain dead slobs will be allowed to touch supermodels and not be arrested.”

  7. Predictive lying?
    Hoping that NO hurting family can find healing and hope?
    Aren’t you just a joy to read over my morning coffee.
    We get it. You hate Trump. It’s going to be a long eight years for Sullum.

    1. Don’t be mean to our Saviour! He is going to solve all our problems!

      1. Sweet delicious salty hammy tears–and you’ve been going since the election!

        Such a treat!

        Doesn’t it feel so much better to vomit forth your scabrous thoughts without that pesky mask?

  8. None of these things can be fact checked at all…and the ones that can are tbd

  9. It seems to me that the new guy just stepped on the gas that will send the country over the fiscal cliff.

  10. A new surge of optimism is placing impossible dreams firmly in our grasp.

    More delusion than a lie. Trump assumes that because he won, this surge exists.

    Dying industries will come roaring back to life.

    Again, more delusion than lie.

    We will stop the drugs from pouring into the country.

    Again…

    I am going to bring back millions of jobs.

    Yet again…

    It will save countless dollars.

    The only identifiable lie so far.

    Republicans and Democrats can work together to achieve an outcome that has eluded our country for decades.

    Back to delusion.

    Action is not a choice; it is a necessity.

    Sometimes, wrong is just wrong, not an actual lie.

    Everything that is broken in our country can be fixed.
    Every problem can be solved.
    Every hurting family can find healing and hope.

    These are actually true. Now, many problems that seem unsolvable do have solutions that we can’t figure out, but every hurting family can find healing and hope. It may be that they never do, but they can.

    Our children will grow up in a nation of miracles.

    How is this a lie? He may be wrong, or the technologies created in the next 20 years may seem miraculous now. It’s just a prediction.

    The time for trivial fights is behind us.

    Aaaaaand more delusion. I counted one actual lie on that list.

  11. “The time for trivial fights is behind us.”

    – I wonder who wrote that for him, and if everyone in the room was laughing when it was first read.

  12. I think that everybody has missed Jacob’s point. The news media have become so accustomed to politicians speaking these lines of empty nonsense that they have become oblivious to just how nonsensical these lines are.

    1. Then maybe Jacob should have characterized it the way you did instead of calling them blatant lies.

      1. Jacob wrote, and I quote: “Then again, maybe the Times is inured to the sort of blatant lies that all presidents tell.”
        Apparently the point was too subtle.

        1. Yea good point. But they aren’t really lies…they are vague themes of optimism and hope. Preferable to doom and gloom

          SotU addresses are only an hour…you can get wonky on a multitude of topics in that timeframe

  13. Everything that is broken in our country can be fixed.

    Every problem can be solved.

    Good lord. Why weren’t these #1 and #2 in bold? It’s this mentality that fucks us every time.

    1. It’s this mentality that fucks us every time.

      Specifically, it’s the unstated assumption that “Everything that is broken in our country can be fixed” and “Every problem can be solved” by the government that gets us in trouble.

  14. So.

    Optimism is a lie.

    You’ve pulled off the mask, ripped off your skin, flayed the muscle down to the bone, and are trying to grind the skull into powder.

    Thank the gods that it’s more than clear that your brain rotted and fell out long ago.

  15. Great article, Jacob. This one deserves to be posted in Salon.

  16. Thanks for the fun post, Jacob. Keep up the good work.

  17. It’s bad enough that Sullum is unable to distinguish dubious predictions from blatant lies. But he also takes the New York Times to task for not making the same error. And to top it all off he has caused me to defend the Times!

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