The Conservative Curse of Gullibility

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Our good friend Jerry over at Grumpy’s Grumblings has a post that I’d like to share with you. I’ve included a link at the end to continue reading on his site. Thanks Jerry!

Ronald Reagan said, “The trouble with our liberal friends is not that they’re ignorant; it’s just that they know so much that isn’t so.” When he said that I absolutely agreed with him. Liberals live in a fantasyland where beliefs supersede facts, I believed. What my bias prevented me from seeing at the time was that what might be true, to some degree, of liberals was to a much greater degree true of me and my conservative compatriots.

Sure, every human tends to succumb to confirmation bias, but I’ve come to see that it’s also true that we can overcome those biased beliefs through open-mindedness and objective, fact-based education. And, as I’ve increasingly observed, liberals—generally being better educated—are more likely to approach issues with an open mind and a willingness to base their beliefs and decisions on objective data.

Unsupported Conservative Claims

These thoughts whirled about in my mind as I recently spent a few hours sequestered in a car with close friends who are avid Trumpists. Throughout the long drive, the radio was tuned to conservative talk shows. Among the many ludicrous claims I heard the hosts and guests make were 1. George Floyd died from a fentanyl overdose, not from loss of oxygen caused by Officer Chauvin’s knee cutting off his air supply, and 2. “Democrats want to create a police state and take away all our rights.”

Both of those claims are demonstrably false. Let’s assess each of them:

1. Among those making the George Floyd overdose assertion are Fox News, Tucker Carlson, Candace Owens, and Kanye West (who has now admitted his error and apologized for it). But the radio show I was subjected to had as its guest the author of a book carrying the title, They’re Lying to You: The Media, The Left, and the Death of George Floyd.

a. The author, Liz Collin, was a prominent reporter for the Minneapolis Star Tribune while, simultaneously, her husband, Lt. Bob Kroll, served as president of the Minneapolis police union. Both Collin and Kroll sought to keep their marital status and potential conflict of interest from the public.

b. Collin and Kroll are both stalwart law-and-order supporters as long as the subject is protests over police brutality. Lock up the protestors—“terrorists” according to Kroll—and throw away the key. But let the crickets chirp when club-wielding anarchists attack the Capitol Building in an attempt to overthrow a legitimate election.

c. Collin and Kroll are both, not surprisingly, avid Trump supporters.

d. Collin’s new book—the one mentioned above—begins with these disclaimers:

“Author, editor, and contributors to this book shall not be held liable or responsible for any loss or damage allegedly arising from any information, opinion, commentary claim, or suggestion contained within this publication. This creative work does not intend to defame any of the subjects, persons, organizations, and other entities mentioned herein. The facts, figures, sources, data, and references contained herein have been vetted; however, the publisher, author, editor, and contributors offer no claim or guarantee to the veracity and accuracy whatsoever and assume no liability for the consumption and use of the visual and textual information contained within this publication.”

In case some of that bloviating blew past you, here’s a one-sentence summary: “Don’t hold us responsible for any inaccuracies and/or outright lies you will read in this ‘creative work.’” Did you catch that term in the book’s disclaimer? It’s a creative work. There is a legitimate genre known as creative nonfiction; its purpose is to present true stories based on verifiable facts in an engaging style that reads more like fiction. But if a work of creative nonfiction really is based on verifiable facts there should be no need for an extended disclaimer such as the one included in Collin’s book.

To continue reading, please click here: Grumpy’s Grumblings


  1. As always, Jerry is spot-on, but this is just so … disgusting! These Republicans — the politicians, the media personalities, and all the rest — should be forced to wear tinfoil hats so we can identify them at a distance and keep our distance!!! Thanks for sharing Jerry’s post, partner!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Reblogged this on Filosofa's Word and commented:
    Y’know, folks, I really think Republicans should have to wear tinfoil hats so we can identify them and keep our distance! Jeff shares a post by Jerry, aka Grumpy, that will either make you laugh, growl, or at the very least shake your head! Thanks, Jeff & Jerry!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Jerry, good post. Reagan was good at acting and selling a concept. Whether it was truthful is irrelevant, but what was more relevant is did it sound good?

    Trump is very good at one thing – selling. And, his favorite product is himself. The truth matters even less with Trump than with Reagan Trump’s sales schtick is telling you what to be afraid of and how he can help you allay your fears. It matters not if the fear is very real, it just needs to be believable.

    What I find of interest as more Republicans turn on Trump openly ridiculing him is how they can disassociate all the lies he told from the person. If they are turning on him, should they not question more of the things he told them. Maybe, just maybe they weren’t true to begin with.

    I recall when Senators Dick Durbin and Lindsay Graham called his bluff and agreed to $25 billion of his wall – his number one campaign issue. They wanted DACA to be made into law. After agreeing Trump was told by folks like Senator Tom Cotton that not doing the deal would be better politically. Again, this was his number one issue and he reneged.

    As a former Republican, the party remains a adrift untethered to the truth. But, if they cut lines to the former untruthful and bullying acting former president, they will head in a better direction toward shore.


    Liked by 1 person

    1. It seems, Keith, that the shiniest new toy will be DeSantis. He’s not as charismatic as Trump but I feel if he ever manages to grab the presidency he could be even more dangerous. Just my thoughts.


      1. Speaking from the woman’s POV, DeSantis isn’t bad-looking. And it’s been proven over the years that looks do play a role in some people’s mind. Unless Trump gets a facelift in the near future, he may be battling more than he bargained for if he runs against DeSantis. Just sayin’.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I appreciate that Nan. You’re certainly not wrong. In our society, looks certainly play a part. Wish it wasn’t the case, but it is.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Jeff, I have long feared someone who is like Trump but is more competent at getting things done. I expected Trump to be the way he was, but there was one huge surprise for me in how his White House was in normative state of “chaos and incompetence.” These are words shared by conservative pundit David Brooks polling other reporters.

        DeSantis likes to act in an untruthful and bullying manner, but he has shown he can make his mean-spiritedness into law, which scares me. Florida deserves better than him and so does our country.


        Liked by 2 people

      4. So true Keith. I’m not so sure how he plays to a wider audience in the country. He’s not that great on the stage, in my view. He lacks the charisma of Trump in that Trump commands whatever room he’s in. He’s a master at it. But, he certainly has the bullying down pat. We shall see


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