Saturday, January 23, 2016

Why Donald Trump Keeps Lying About Unemployment

By Teresa Tritch, NYT
January 21, 2016 6:32 pm

Trump received four Pinocchios this week from fact checkers at the Washington Post who vetted his claim that the unemployment rate in the United States is really 23 percent – which would be about as bad as it was in the depth of Great Depression of the 1930s.

At its worst in the last downturn, unemployment was 10 percent (in 2009). Since then, it has fallen to 5 percent.

Case closed? Unfortunately, no. One reason political lies are insidious is that rebutting them requires repeating them. Rebuttal is a vital public service, but lies thrive on repetition.

Mr. Trump has been making wild-eyed claims about unemployment since at least last June, when Politifact rated his pronouncements as “False.” But he keeps it up because, obviously, his goal is not to inform. It’s to inflame. The facts would not stoke the raw emotions that power Mr. Trump’s candidacy, so he uses lies. What he loses in credibility among detractors he gains in popularity among supporters.

(More here.)


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