Traitorous Critic Fallacy – FT#31

Traitorous Critic Fallacy – FT#31

Show Notes

The Traitorous Critic Fallacy, or Ergo Decedo, is a fallacy where someone dismisses a person with genuine complaints by telling them if they don’t like it, they can leave. It’s a way of avoiding dealing with the complaint itself and branding the complainer as unworthy of being part of ‘our’ group.

We started out with this clip of the Donald making excuses for his racist tweets:


In Mark’s British Politics Corner, we talked about this clip from BBC’s Question Time.

Then we talked about this Noel Gallagher telling ‘remoaners’ where to go.


In the Fallacy in the Wild, we talked about this clip from The Office episode “Did I Stutter?”:

Then we discussed a clip from American Hustle, just after Jennifer Lawrence blows up a science oven:

Here are the statements from this week’s Fake News game: 

  1. I don’t know if you’ve heard, but I just got a great endorsement from Mitch McConnell. Such a lot of people are endorsing me. Mitch is a great guy and a great friend — a better friend now that he’s endorsed me — and he’s done a tremendous job as Senate Majority Leader. I don’t know him that well, but the couple of times I’ve got to meet him we got on very well. I think we’re going to be good friends.
  2. I just want to say that we just spent quite a bit of time inside with the Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who has been a friend of mine for a long time, long before my world of politics, early into his world of politics, I think. But we’ve been friends for a long time. We are probably now, despite what we read, we’re probably now — I think, at least as far as I’m concerned — closer than ever before. And the relationship is very good.
  3. Mitch McConnell is a man that knows less about Russia and Russia’s influence than even Donald Trump. And I know nothing. So I think it’s a horrible thing when a paper — which is really just a paper for the benefit of Amazon — the Washington Post is fake news, just like the New York Times is fake news. It’s put there for the benefit — the Washington Post — of Amazon. That’s my opinion. And I think it’s a disgrace.

Click below for the answer

Mark got it wrong this week, but at least he’s on a nice round number – exactly 40%.


Then we talked about the second Democratic Debates.


And finally, here are the stories we really didn’t have time to talk about:

  • Last weekend, America suffered two more mass shootings, in El Paso Texas and Dayton, Ohio. Once again Republicans tried to place the blame anywhere but on guns, with Trump reading disingenuous words from a teleprompter that once again blamed video games, included the phrase “Mental illness and hatred pull the trigger, not the gun” and saw Trump ad lib Toledo when the teleprompter said ‘Texas and Ohio’. The White House barred the press pool from attending his subsequent visits to the affected cities, saying it was about the victims, not a photo op. Of course, because it’s Trump, the White House media team took plenty of photos of a grinning Trump giving his signature thumbs up and made a schmaltzy campaign ad out of the visit. Watching the ad, you can’t even tell that all eight of the victims still being treated in El Paso University Medical Centre refused to meet with Trump.
  • Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown and Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley were rather complementary about Trump’s visit to shooting victims at a Dayton Hospital on 7th August. At a press conference after Trump and Melania had left Brown said “He was received well by the patients, as you’d expect. They’re hurting.He was comforting. He did the right things and Melania did the right things. And it’s his job in part to comfort people. I’m glad he did it in those hospital rooms.” But these are Democrats and their weasel words are not to be trusted – by 2:32pm the same day Dan Scavino Jr. tweeted in an uncannily Trump way “Very SAD to see Ohio Senator Brown, & Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley – LYING & completely mischaracterizing what took place w/ the President’s visit to Miami Valley Hospital today. They are disgraceful politicians, doing nothing but politicizing a mass shooting, at every turn they can…” an hour and a quarter later Trump added “Their news conference after I left for El Paso was a fraud. It bore no resemblance to what took place with those incredible people that I was so lucky to meet and spend time with.” er he’s denying the good things they said took place wait what..  How fragile must your ego be to pre-prepare and tweet out a rebuttal even when people are nice about you – oh yeah no wait durr! 
  • Trump just seems determined to kill US agriculture because he can’t admit that trade wars are neither good, nor easy to win. His latest round of tariffs on Chinese consumer goods has caused China to announce they are halting all purchases of US agricultural products and they’ve allowed their currency to drop to its lowest value in over 10 years, leading the Treasury Department to officially designate them as a currency manipulator. This is very bad. According to many economists such as Art Hogan, chief market strategist at National Securities Corporation, exactly how bad it will get is impossible to tell, but the worse it gets, the faster the US will be plunged into a full on recession. And Trump still somehow thinks he’s punishing the Chinese.
  • On that subject I’m not one to normally hold with conspiracy theories but when 99% of the USDA USDept of Agriculture’s funds to help bailout farmers affected as a result of the trade tariffs war with China instigated by, let me check, oh the US government end up going to white farmers – 91% of recipients being MALE white farmers I begin to suspect some higher plan at work. Donald Carr, a senior adviser at the Environmental Working Group, told Bloomberg that when bailout funds “continue to overwhelmingly flow to an elite group of the largest farms, wealthy landowners and city residents with no real connection to the day-to-day operations on the land, it’s clear the program is deeply flawed and not delivering aid to those farmers in desperate need.” The USDA said payments have all been made in accordance with our published regulations and existing procedures,” ah well that’s alright then no need to do anything about it – “we were just following orders” anyone?
  • If Trump put a bit more thought into his nominations instead of just blurting them out, maybe his pick for Director of National Intelligence, Congressman John Ratcliffe, would have had time to look at his own website and delete the parts of his resume where he’d made stuff up, like his claim that he’d put terrorists in prison despite in fact never having prosecuted a terrorist. Or the claim that he was the prosecutor on US v Holy Land Foundation, one of the nations largest terrorism financing cases, for which he in fact was not even on the prosecution team.  When he decided to withdraw from consideration, Trump admitted he had been hasty… no, of course he didn’t. He tweeted: Our great Republican Congressman John Ratcliffe is being treated very unfairly by the LameStream Media. Rather than going through months of slander and libel, I explained to John how miserable it would be for him and his family to deal with these people….Trump’s right, it’s very unfair of the media to report on what people actually do.  Shame on them.
  • Trump of course is noted for insisting people serving in public office hold the law in high regard, and so it is with former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich who continues to serve the remainder of 18 years jail time not least for being caught on tape trying to sell off the appointment to the vacated Senate seat of newly-elected President Barack Obama to the highest bidder. Ah no what am I saying, Rod’s also been on TV – on Celebrity Apprentice season 9 – Trump’s Apprentice!! Trump fired Rod when he couldn’t verify facts about Harry Potter, how times have changed – good ol’ showbiz buddy Trump thinks Rod’s been hard done by, wants to make it up to him and commute his sentence. Yeah great optics Donny great optics, set free a convicted and jailed corrupt politician now, now of all moments! Donny You’re Fired – idiot!
  • Texas Congressman Will Hurd, the only African American Republican in the House of Representatives, has said he will not be running for reelection in 2020. That makes him the eleventh House Republican, and the sixth just in the last two weeks that have announced they are leaving office next year. Giving up their incumbency reduces the GOPs chances of winning those seats in 2020, but then so does being led by a racist reality TV has-been, so who’s to say how much it really matters.  Fans of black Republicans in Congress shouldn’t feel too hard done by, because there’s always the Senate, where you can find Tim Scott and… well, that’s it.
  • Ben Carson Secretary of Housing and Urban Development set up for a press conference outside church in Baltimore to appear like he was doing something for the neighborhood Church officials kindly told him to go back to where he came from. Ironic really cos he used to come from round there, working in Baltimore – where he says he was afraid to send kids home because of  “rats and an unabated lead problem” and thanked god that he was now in charge at HUD and could do something about it, which he hasn’t apart from roll back Obama-era housing legislation and buying a $31,000 dining room set for his office and $8,000 dishwasher in the office kitchen without notifying congress. Whattaguy whattaguy!


That’s all for this week. Welcome to our new Patron, Myles Robinson, and thanks for listening!

Jim Cliff

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