Archives for category: Lies

Trump is obsessed with Barack Obama. He tried to reverse whatever his predecessor did. In the wake of the FBI seizure of classified documents from Trump’s residence, Trump insisted that Obama took 33 million documents and no one complained. This became a talking point on rightwing Trump talk shows.

The National Archives issued a statement refuting Trump’s lie:

The National Archives and Records Administration issued a statement Friday in an attempt to counter misstatements about former president Barack Obama’s presidential records after several days of misinformation that had been spread by former president Donald Trump and conservative commentators.

Since the FBI search of his Florida home and club this week for classified documents, Trump has asserted in social media posts that Obama “kept 33 million pages of documents, much of them classified” and that they were “taken to Chicago by President Obama.”

In its statement, NARA said that it obtained “exclusive legal and physical custody” of Obama’s records when he left office in 2017. It said that about 30 million pages of unclassified records were transferred to a NARA facility in the Chicago area and that they continue to be maintained “exclusively by NARA.”

Classified records from Obama are kept in a NARA facility in Washington, the statement said.
“As required by the [Presidential Records Act], former President Obama has no control over where and how NARA stores the Presidential records of his Administration,” the statement said.

Trump’s lies never end.

The New York Times reported:

Even as former President Donald J. Trump invoked the Fifth Amendment in a New York inquiry into his business practices, he and his allies began an effort to discredit another investigation, suggesting without evidence, that federal agents may have planted incriminating materials before searching his residence in Florida on Monday.

In a post on Wednesday morning on his social media app, Truth Social, Mr. Trump said that the agents who showed up at Mar-a-Lago would not let anyone, including his lawyers, observe their work, which was authorized as a by a federal magistrate judge.

Mr. Trump — who has not released the search warrant provided by the agents to his lawyers or the manifest his team was given of the materials the agents gathered and removed — baselessly suggested that the F.B.I. might have acted inappropriately.

“Everyone was asked to leave the premises, they wanted to be alone,” he wrote, “without any witnesses to see what they were doing, taking or, hopefully not, ‘planting.’”

Mr. Trump’s effort to sow doubts about the F.B.I.’s search before the results are known was in keeping with his history of trying to head off news by seeking to turn the tables on his accusers. The former president’s first line of attack against adversaries is often to mount a campaign in advance to discredit them and their work.

Around the same time that his message appeared on social media, The New York Post published an article about the F.B.I. search, noting in the third paragraph that “a source close to the former president” had expressed concern that federal agents or prosecutors could have “planted stuff” in the 128-room building.

The unfounded allegations seem to have first emerged on Tuesday morning when Christina Bobb, a lawyer for Mr. Trump who was present during the search, was asked during an interview on the right-wing TV station Real America’s Voice about whether it was possible that federal agents could have planted evidence.

“There is no security that something wasn’t planted,” Ms. Bobb said before quickly admitting that she did not know if anything improper had occurred.

Huh? No one was present during the search except his lawyer Christina Bobb.

This might be one of the tricks he learned from his mentor Roy Cohn, who advised Mafia dons.

Donald Trump said many times when he was running for president in 2016 that anyone who takes the Fifth Amendment is guilty.

Yesterday, when questioned by New York state investigators about the practices of the Trump Organization, he repeatedly took the Fifth.

The state is investigating whether he manipulated the value of his properties to lower his taxes, then inflated their value to sell them.

The Boston Globe offered Trump’s explanation for his silence:

NEW YORK (AP) — Donald Trump invoked the Fifth Amendment and wouldn’t answer questions under oath in the New York attorney general’s long-running civil investigation into his business dealings, the former president said in a statement Wednesday.

Trump arrived at state Attorney General Letitia James’ offices in a motorcade shortly before 9 a.m., before announcing more than an hour later that he “declined to answer the questions under the rights and privileges afforded to every citizen under the United States Constitution.”

“I once asked, ‘If you’re innocent, why are you taking the Fifth Amendment?’ Now I know the answer to that question,” the statement said. “When your family, your company, and all the people in your orbit have become the targets of an unfounded politically motivated Witch Hunt supported by lawyers, prosecutors and the Fake News Media, you have no choice…”

James, a Democrat, has said in court filings that her office has uncovered “significant” evidence that Trump’s company “used fraudulent or misleading asset valuations to obtain a host of economic benefits, including loans, insurance coverage, and tax deductions.”

James alleges the Trump Organization exaggerated the value of its holdings to impress lenders or misstated what land was worth to slash its tax burden, pointing to annual financial statements given to banks to secure favorable loan terms and to financial magazines to justify Trump’s place among the world’s billionaires.

The company even exaggerated the size of Trump’s Manhattan penthouse, saying it was nearly three times its actual size — a difference in value of about $200 million, James’ office said.

Trump has denied the allegations, contending that seeking the best valuations is a common practice in the real estate industry. He says James’ investigation is politically motivated and that her office is “doing everything within their corrupt discretion to interfere with my business relationships, and with the political process.” He’s also accused James, who is Black, of racism in pursuing the investigation.

In the Texas governor’s race between the vile Gregg Abbott and challenged Beto O’Rourke, the candidates are fighting for rural votes on the issue of vouchers. Rural Republicans have a strong allegiance to their public schools, which are often the heart of the community and its biggest employer. Many rural communities do not have any other schools.

Yet Governor Abbott has supinely sought the approval of Betsy DeVos’s American Federation of Children.

The Texas Tribune summed up the conflict:

A battle over school vouchers is mounting in the race to be Texas governor, set into motion after Republican incumbent Greg Abbott offered his clearest support yet for the idea in May.

His Democratic challenger, Beto O’Rourke, is hammering Abbott over the issue on the campaign trail, especially seeking an advantage in rural Texas, where Democrats badly know they need to do better and where vouchers split Republicans. O’Rourke’s campaign is also running newspaper ads in at least 17 markets, mostly rural, that urge voters to “reject Greg Abbott’s radical plan to defund” public schools.

Abbott, meanwhile, is not shying away from the controversy he ignited when he said in May that he supports giving parents “the choice to send their children to any public school, charter school or private school with state funding following the student.” He met privately last week with Corey DeAngelis, an aggressive national school choice activist who had previously criticized Abbott as insufficiently supportive of the cause.

“School choice” tends to refer to the broad concept of giving parents the option to send their kids to schools beyond their local public school, while vouchers would allow parents to use state tax dollars to subsidize tuition for those other options, including private schools. Opponents of vouchers say they harm public school systems by draining their funding. In the Legislature, vouchers have long encountered resistance from Democrats and rural Republicans whose public schools are the lifeblood of their communities.

O’Rourke is leaning into the bipartisan salience of the issue.

“For our rural communities, where there’s only one school district and only one option of public school, he wants to defund that through vouchers, take your tax dollars out of your classroom and send it to a private school in Dallas or Austin or somewhere else at your expense,” O’Rourke told a rural audience recently.

As usual, the voucher vultures are pushing the lie that money taken away from your public school will allow children to attend elite private schools.

It can’t be said often enough: voucher funds are never enough to pay for elite public funds. It is a lie. Voucher funding ranges from $4,000 to $8,000. The tuition at elite private schools ranges from $30,000 to $70,000.

Elite private schools don’t have vacancies. When they do, they don’t seek to enroll poor kids.

After 25 years of vouchers, the research is clear: kids who leave community public schools for voucher schools lose academic ground. Large numbers return to their public schools.

Meanwhile public schools are grievously harmed by the withdrawal of funding. They must lay off teachers and cut programs.

If the Devil designed a program to hurt the public schools, he would call it vouchers. And it would be funded by the American Federatuon for Chiildren.

The Oklahoma State Board of Education lowered the rating of two districts—Tulsa and Mustang—for offering lessons or training that violated state bans on “critical race theory.”

Let’s be clear: hardly anyone in the state of Oklahoma knows what “critical race theory” is.

The board punished the two districts because they asked students or teachers to reflect on the meaning of racism.

In Mustang, one teacher complained.

Tulsa is a majority-minority district, but it made the mistake of teaching something other than lily-white stories about America., where racism might have long ago existed. Teaching about racism today is intolerable.

Representatives for the Tulsa and Mustang school districts did not immediately respond to requests for comment Saturday. In a statement to the Oklahoman, Tulsa Public Schools denied that the training stated that people of a certain race were inherently racist, saying it would “never support such a training,” but the system defended the need for implicit bias training.


“In Tulsa, we are teaching our children an accurate — and at times painful, difficult, and uncomfortable — history about our shared human experience,” the district told the newspaper. “We also teach in a beautifully diverse community and need our team to work together to be prepared to do that well.”


Charles Bradley, the superintendent of Mustang Public Schools, said in a statement published by News 9 that he was “shocked” by the board’s demotion, which he called a “harsh action.”


H.B. 1775 prohibits teaching that any individual “bears responsibility for actions committed in the past by other members of the same race or sex.” It also bans any course material that would make a student “feel discomfort, guilt, anguish or any other form of psychological distress on account of his or her race or sex.”

Message: Never teach the truth!

Kathryn Joyce writes in Salon about a new “patriotic” social studies curriculum that celebrates rightwing ideology and deletes social justice from American history. The goal of the new curriculum is to fight “critical race theory” and “wokeness,” which are allegedly trying to “overthrow America.”

Just to be clear, the goal of the new curriculum is to delete the accurate and tragic facts about racism, past and present. They want teachers to stuff children’s heads with fake history. They assume that if students learn the truth about slavery, the Ku Klux Klan, Jim Crow, segregation, redlining, and the unfinished struggle for equal rights for all, they will not have faith in America. If they learn the truth, they think, they will want to “overthrow” the government. This is almost too insane to write or repeat, but it’s happening. Crazy people want teachers of social studies and history to teach lies.

We used to teach children that it was wrong to tell lies. But these extremists want the entire education system to embrace lies. The danger is that students will watch documentaries on television and discover that everything they learned in social studies was a pack of lies. What then? Who will they want to overthrow?

Joyce writes:

In late June, a conservative education coalition called the Civics Alliance released a new set of social studies standards for K-12 schools, with the intention of promoting it as a model for states nationwide. These standards, entitled “American Birthright,” are framed as yet another corrective to supposedly “woke” public schools, where, according to Republicans, theoretical frameworks like critical race theory are only one part of a larger attack on the foundations of American democracy. 

“Too many Americans have emerged from our schools ignorant of America’s history, indifferent to liberty, filled with animus against their ancestors and their fellow Americans, and estranged from their country,” reads the introduction to “American Birthright.” (The “birthright” here refers to “freedom.”) And the fields of history and civics, it suggests, exemplify the worst of that trend. “The warping of American social studies instruction has created a corps of activists dedicated to the overthrow of America and its freedoms, larger numbers of Americans indifferent to the steady whittling away of American liberty, and many more who are so ignorant of the past they cannot use our heritage of freedom to judge contemporary debates.” 

While it claims to represent an ideologically neutral, apolitical history, the document holds that most instruction that references “diversity, equity and inclusion” or “social justice” amounts to “vocational training in progressive activism” and “actively promote[s] disaffection from our country.” It heralds Ronald Reagan as a “hero of liberty” alongside Abraham Lincoln and Martin Luther King Jr. Its proposed lessons in contemporary U.S. history include Reagan’s revitalization of the conservative movement, Bill Clinton’s impeachment, “Executive amnesties for illegal aliens” and the “George Floyd Riots.”  

American Birthright is just one of numerous recent right-wing efforts to overhaul public K-12 curricula to align with the dictates of current conservative ideology. 

Last week, the Miami Herald reported that Florida’s Department of Education has begun holding three-day training sessions for public school teachers around the state to prepare them to implement the state’s new Civics Literacy Excellence Initiative, Gov. Ron DeSantis’ flagship effort to create a more “patriotic” civics curriculum. The new Florida standards were created in consultation with Hillsdale College, a small Christian college that has become a guiding force on the right, and the Charles Koch-founded Bill of Rights Institute. 


These new rightwing curriculum writers want to impose the evangelical Christian worldview on America’s children. They want to force their fundamentalists ideology on everyone. Once they have gained control of the Governor’s office, they want to gain control of the schools and use them as centers of indoctrination. You may believe, with some evidence, that public schools have always taught American history with the atrocities edited out. But not even the bowdlerized textbooks were as audacious as the outright lies that the fundies are pushing now.

Mainstream textbook editors might balk at portraying Ronald Reagan as the equal of Abraham Lincoln. If so, the states that want anti-woke (i.e., unconscious) accounts of history can always purchase the texts produced by the publishers that supply Christian fundamentalist schools and Bob Jones University. The Abeka curriculum, written for homeschoolers and Christian schools, might become the official textbooks of Florida and other red states.

Who needs an educated citizenry? Apparently the educated are a threat to the indoctrinated.

There will never be justice for the families who lost loved ones at the Sandy Hook (Ct) massacre.

But Alex Jones will pay for his lies, his claims that the massacre of children and educators was a hoax staged by “crisis actors” to build support for gun control.

A jury in Texas awarded one set of parents $45 in punitive damages in addition to $4 million in compensatory damages for the pain and anguished he inflicted on the survivors.

This is the first trial. There are more to come.

Others will have to explain why Jones shamelessly exploited the suffering of Sandy Hook families. If it was greed, then it is just that he lose his ill-gotten gains.

What a vile, evil man.

It was widely reported yesterday that Florida Governor Ron DeSantis had fired the state prosecutor for Hillsborough County because he refused to enforce state law on abortion and gender-affirming care for young people.

The prosecutor spoke out and basically said DeSantis was lying. No such cases had come up in Hillsborough but DeSantis was playing to Republicans in Iowa and other red states.

Raw Story reported:

On Thursday, Florida Politics reported that Andrew Warren, the Democratic state prosecutor of Hillsborough County, Florida, is hitting back at Gov. Ron DeSantis after he moved to suspend him from office.

“People need to understand this isn’t the Governor trying to suspend the one elected official,” said Warren. “This is the Governor trying to overthrow democracy here in Hillsborough County.”

Florida is unusual among states in that county prosecutors are elected directly, but that the governor has the authority to suspend them from office. DeSantis took this action against Warren, a progressive prosecutor who was elected on criminal justice reform, because of his refusal to enforce the state’s 15-week abortion ban and prohibition on gender-affirming care for children. In his place, DeSantis has installed Susan Lopez, a right-wing lawyer he previously appointed as Hillsborough County Judge.

“We’re protecting people’s rights; we have fought so hard for public safety and fairness and justice,” Warren said. “If the Governor thinks he can do a better job, then he should run for state attorney — not President. The Governor wants to do his sideshow with his cronies. I’m the one who’s upholding the law.” He added that regarding abortion and gender-affirming care prosecutions, “None of those cases have been brought to us. We’re not anticipating those cases being brought to us,” and urged any concerned to ask the county sheriff if any such cases are even being investigated.

In the past few years, we have seen the rise of something called the “parental rights” movement. This movement consists of angry white parents, mostly women, like “Moms for Liberty” and “Parents Defending Freedom,” who insist that they as parents have the “right” to decide what their children are taught in school and what books they read. They strenuously object to teaching about race and racism, which they say makes their children “uncomfortable.” They believe that teachers are “grooming” their children to be gay or transgender by teaching them about gender or sexuality. Of course, if the last were true, almost everyone would now be transgender, since most students have taken a sex-ed course at some point, focused mainly on health.

In response to the outcry from these groups, a number of states, led by Florida and Virginia, have passed laws they describe as “parental rights” laws, which ban the teaching of “divisive concepts” because they make students “uncomfortable.” The most “divisive” concept of all is “critical race theory,” which states ban. Since legislators don’t know what critical race theory is, their laws are meant to remove any teaching about race and racism from the curriculum.

Bottom line: only white parents have parental rights.

But what about Black parents? Do they have rights? Apparently not.

What about other parents who do not identify with angry white parents? Don’t their children have the right to learn an accurate history of the state, the U.S., and the world?

Why do Moms for Liberty get to define what all parents want?

Shouldn’t Black children learn about the history of race and racism?

Why shouldn’t all students learn accurate history, even if it makes them “uncomfortable”?

Why should a small subset of far-right fringe white parents get the power to censor what everyone else is taught and is allowed to read?

These “parental rights” laws are a paper-thin veneer for censorship, gag orders, lies and propaganda. They are the product of arrogant racists who can’t be bothered to hide their venomous racism.

They prefer ignorance to knowledge. They should not be allowed to impose their hateful ideology on others.

Ron DeSantis is either very crazy or very mad. At a press conference, he claimed that elementary school teachers are “instructed” to encourage children to switch genders.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is never one to let the facts get in the way of his latest bit of fear-mongering. The governor and possible presidential candidate tossed out another bit of rancid, Republican red meat, telling a crowd at a recent press conference that school teachers are “instructed to tell kids” to switch genders.

Governor DeSantis has insulted every teacher in the state of Florida. He hates teachers, except when he wants to arm them.

This attack must be part of his plan to turn parents against their local public schools and to create demand for vouchers. With vouchers, students can attend religious schools that openly indoctrinate their students.