The Trump Administration’s war on expertise continues to expand.
Jeff Sessions (memorably identified by a Facebook friend as one of those Confederate monuments that should be removed) ignores 40+ years of criminal justice research and intensifies the drug war. Betsy DeVos gives a feminine finger to the mountains of data rebutting her insistence that vouchers improve educational outcomes. Scott Pruitt spits on the 98% of climate scientists who agree that climate change is (a) real; (b) accelerating and (c) caused by human activity, especially fossil fuel use.
There is a reason that terms like “Know Nothings,” “Keystone Kops,” and “Gang that Can’t Shoot Straight” are being retrieved from past usage and applied to this sorry band of incompetents and theocrats.
When it comes to economic policy, Trump’s alternate reality isn’t limited to his belief that he invented the term “priming the pump.” As a column from the Washington Post recently reported,
President Trump’s administration says his tax cut will pay for itself. It turns out it’s really hard to find an economist who agrees.
The University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business regularly polls economists on controversial questions. In a survey the school published last week on Trump’s tax plans, only two out of the 37 economists that responded said that the cuts would stimulate the economy enough to cancel out the effect on total tax revenue.
Those two economists now both say they made a mistake, and that they misunderstood the question.
So there is not a single economist in the Chicago poll who agrees with the President that his proposed tax cuts would pay for themselves.
Not that the opinion of 39 out of 39 experts has a chance in hell of influencing a Commander-in-Chief whose residence in a very bizarre alternate universe becomes more apparent every day.
In Trump World–a world shared to varying degrees by the members of his spectacularly ignorant and incompetent cabinet–Trump knows more than those elitists who actually studied their subject matter. Sissies read books and conduct empirical research; superior beings (i.e. rich guys) surround themselves with lackeys and listen to their guts.
What did Stephen Colbert call it? Oh yes–Truthiness.
To use a term dear to the heart of our linguistically-challenged President, SAD.