Our commander in chief proved beyond a reasonable doubt that he is the chief fabricator of news while visiting troops at an air base in Iraq the day after Christmas.
It was inexcusable for the president of the United States to lie to the troops during what was billed as an expression of the nation’s gratitude for their service but was treated like a political rally.
Donald Trump, in the event you didn’t know and obviously don’t care, your inaccurate comments about troops not receiving pay raises would have resulted in your firing as a reporter for any newspaper and/or news outlet in the world.
Yes, and it is our role as journalists to call you out on your fabricating.
First, you not only defy convention, you defy the law.
This event should not have been treated by you or by troops in uniform as a campaign event. You should know and should abide by Department of Defense rules about such matters.
Neither should you have claimed that military personnel haven’t received a pay raise in a decade.
You told troops, “… you just got one of the biggest pay raises you’ve ever received … You haven’t gotten one in more than 10 years – more than 10 years. And we got you a big one. I got you a big one. I got you a big one.”
PolitiFact reports that statement is incorrect.
“Service members have received pay increases every year, as mandated by federal law, for over three decades and the 2019 increase is set at 2.6 percent.
“Even if Trump meant that members hadn’t received that large of a raise in over a decade, that would also be false. The increase is exceeded by raises in 2008, 2009 and 2010.”
It is a falsehood Trump has repeated before. The president made similar statements in May to a gathering of military mothers and spouses.
During a speech to Naval Academy graduates a few weeks later, he made a similar false statement.
The president has made more than 7,500 false or misleading claims in his 700 or so days in office, according to The Washington Post’s Fact Checker.
Unfortunately, the leader of the greatest nation on earth continues to ignore the facts and has the gall to accuse journalists of “fabricating news.”
The greater concern may be that truth no longer matters and that it may be politically correct for citizens to sit in a tub of water on a hot stove and avoid watching the temperature rise.
You don’t have to be a journalist or a president to know where that may lead.