So here we all are isolating at our homes and the gubment decides to start disrupting the postal service. We might be more dependent on mail than ever before. Somehow this is supposed to be about mail-in voting. Trump made these remarks about the situation:
They want three and a half billion dollars for something that'll turn out to be fraudulent, that's election money basically. They want three and a half billion dollars for the mail-in votes. Universal mail-in ballots. They want $25 billion, billion, for the Post Office. Now they need that money in order to make the Post Office work so it can take all of these millions and millions of ballots.
But if they don't get those two items that means you can't have universal mail-in voting because you they're not equipped to have it.
This is completely bizarre. We're not talking about elections, we're talking about the ability to reliably send and receive mail. My county is 70% Republican and we've had universal mail voting for the past three elections, it works fine and we're not in a position to change it overnight. Then yesterday he said, "I have encouraged everybody to speed up the mail, not slow the mail." I truly believe that this man does not know what he's saying or remember what he's said, nor does he know what his people are doing. He just loves to order people around.
The assault on mail is one more front in Trump's War on Messengers
. From the beginning of his term, he has targeted news media. He's dismissed and attacked experts in every field, to the point that he rejects "expertise" as a concept. He's attacked scientific and public health programs. He's particularly hostile toward testing and monitoring. In the latest example, the administration hobbled measurements of methane emissions: Opinion | Forget the Trump tweets. This is the Trump action that might actually kill us.
The new rules, first and foremost, are not merely anti-science, but anti-measurement. That is, the rollbackâ€™s primary initial impact is to keep Americans in the dark about a climate-damaging pollutant.
â€œHow could we as an advanced society not want to measure these emissions?â€ asks Michael Greenstone, director of the University of Chicagoâ€™s Energy Policy Institute. â€œThis is such a concerted effort to stick our heads in the ground.â€
Maybe so. But it would be of a piece with Trumpâ€™s musings about slowing coronavirus testing so Americans donâ€™t learn how many cases there are; his administrationâ€™s decision to cease publishing economic forecasts so Americans canâ€™t assess the problems facing the economy; and its actions to stop collecting or publishing inconvenient data on all sorts of other troubles.
The conclusion is painfully obvious: Trump doesn't like knowledge, or the people who communicate it, or the instruments and methods that inform it. Objectivity is a threat to him, because he lives in a fluid and chaotic reality of pure spin. Experts and facts diminish his authority. He hates to be fact-checked, so let's go to war against facts.