Silent Majority Fallacy – FT#98

Silent Majority Fallacy – FT#98

Show Notes

The Silent Majority Fallacy is committed when someone assumes all or most of the people who aren’t vocally disagreeing with them, in fact agree with them.


We started out with this clip of Trump implying people who don’t protest his immigration policies are on his side:

We followed that with this clip of Trump claiming that people with ten flags on their boats are part of the silent majority:

Mark’s British Politics Corner

Mark talked about David Cameron’s invocation of the silent majority in the run up to a vote on Scottish independence

Then we looked at Scottish Tory leader Douglas Ross claiming the SNP’s huge actual majority will be beaten by all the people who can’t be bothered to vote:


Fallacy in the Wild

In the Fallacy in the Wild we looked at this clip from Oliver Stone’s Nixon, with Anthony Hopkins:

Then we looked at this clip of the real Richard Nixon:

And we finished with this clip from Gilmore Girls:

Fake News

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

  1. They suppress the vote, and they artificially suppress the vote and probably illegally suppress the vote, and nobody wants to talk about it, but it’s a very dangerous thing. Now what they do is they use prosecutors. Look, I’ve gone through, in five years, more investigations than Al Capone, Jesse James and Billy the Kid put together. If I fly over a Democrat state in my airplane, I end up before a Grand Jury. It’s a disgrace.
  2. But I just, based on past, I think, probably, nothing will happen. Look, we also had a chance, but Bill Barr, the Attorney General, didn’t want to be impeached. They were vicious with him. They said “We’re going to impeach you”. They didn’t even know why. But they were going to impeach Bill Barr. He didn’t want to be impeached. How do you not get impeached? You sit back and relax and wait out for your term to end.
  3. I told him he needed to do the right thing. I said “I got impeached twice, it didn’t do me any harm”. In fact if you remember, I went up in the polls, by a lot. By a lot. Maybe he should have tried to get impeached. Frankly if Bill Barr had done his job and done what I hired him to do, then we wouldn’t be in the mess we are now. And it is a mess. And now he writes this crummy book, which is full of lies, by the way.

    Click below for the answer

Mark got it right again this week, and is back up to 50%


Hunter Biden’s laptop is not a logical fallacy

We talked about the truth behind the right wing claims that the Washington Post has finally admitted Hunter Biden’s laptop is real. (Spoiler: they didn’t)


The stories we really didn’t have time to talk about

  • Since Fox is famously fair and balanced they probably took regular breaks from talking about Hunter Biden’s laptop to cover the latest scandal involving Trump son-in-law and cheap waxwork of Joseph Gordon Levitt, Jared Kushner. What’s that? They mentioned Hunter 68 times on Monday and Jared zero? OK, yeah, that tracks. In which case, the Fox viewers among you will not have heard that within six months of leaving the White House, Kushner started up a private equity firm called Affinity Partners and approached Saudi Prince Mohammed Bin Salman for investment. But you don’t get to be as absurdly rich as Bin Salman without doing your due diligence, so naturally the investment opportunity was screened by a panel of experts. Every single member of the panel recommended against investing with Kushner, citing objections that included “the inexperience of the Affinity Fund management”; due diligence on the fledgling firm’s operations that found them “unsatisfactory in all aspects”; a proposed asset management fee that “seems excessive”; and, and this is the best part, “public relations risks” from Mr. Kushner’s prior role as a senior adviser to former President Trump. Yes, one of the main objections to investing in the firm was that the association with Trump would make the human-rights-abusing, dissident-torturing, journalist-murdering Prince look bad. MBS clearly took this advice very seriously and immediately invested $2 billion in Kushner’s company. But you know, Hunter might have mentioned his Dad in an email, so that’s basically the same.
  • For $2,500, you can vote for Fauci’s inevitable conviction as part of a mock grand jury convened by an Elvis impersonator, and hobnob with “VIPs.” is the verbatim byline from the Daily Beast. Yes folks a bit like those high school debating society mock-whatevers where one side would propose the motion “This House believes… Darwin invented Dinosaurs” or “ we should go back and Crucify Barabas, on a sliding scale from 25 to 2500 dollars – free t-shirt included, you can join the motley group of far-right anti-vaxxer conspidiots “America’s Grand Jury” to not actually put to Trial one Anthony Fauci but rather vote to see if he should be indicted. The primarily-money-making organisation, notwithstanding the costs of t-shirt printing and live streaming and hosting a shindig at which the expensive tickets get you rubbing shoulders with other high profile crazies, has a website which is rather reluctant to point out in small print that it won’t actually be able to indict Fauci. But hey no point in ruining a good party. What’s it all for? – well in a witchfinder-general kind of way I guess it’s finding someone to blame for the state of one’s own ignorance, stupidity and denial of the existence of something outside of one’s power – in this case COVID. And with the lack of a troller-in-chief in the White House or any new Q posts if you’re gonna be needlessly nasty to someone might as well make some dough in the process. 
  • OK, what the fuck is going on in Georgia? Democratic Senator Raphael Warnock, who won a special election last year and is now running for a full term, is currently trailing in the polls to Republican candidate Herschel Walker. Warnock is a baptist pastor who led services at Martin Luther King’s old church, whereas Walker is a self confessed domestic abuser who claims he’s played Russian roulette more than six times in his life because he just loves to compete. In Walker’s favor, he graduated from the University of Georgia in the top 1 % of his class, and since retiring from football in 1997 he’s been a very successful businessman, and as of 2020 he ran the largest minority owned upholstery and apparel firm in the US, and the largest minority owned food company in the US and he owns three poultry processing plants in Arkansas. His companies employ well over a thousand people and bring in an annual revenue of $70 to $80 million.  Except, none of that is true.  You see Walker, despite having been hit in the head a LOT when he was a running back for the Cowboys and the Vikings, has noticed that if you’re a Republican, you can just say shit and none of your voters will ever care whether it’s true or not.  Not only did he not graduate in the top 1% in his class at the University of Georgia, he didn’t graduate at all. The upholstery firm he claims he runs, and has previously claimed he started, dissolved last year after being run for five generations by the same family – not Walker’s family by the way. When his food company applied for a PPP loan last year they only had 8 employees instead of the 800 he has previously claimed, and when questioned in a deposition about his ownership of the three poultry plants he said “I don’t mean to speak of ‘own’ in a technical sense,” because he doesn’t own them. They are owned by a company he does business with.  And according to another deposition obtained by the Daily Beast, the combined net income of all his businesses between 2009 and 2017 was $14 million. Not per year. In total. That’s 2% of how much he claimed. It’s not often we’re on the same side as a baptist pastor, but come on people, vote for Warnock.
  • As Kermit once said “it’s not easy being green” and even Danny Kaye reminded us in song of the problems of dismissing someone cos of their looks. Well if its not enough to ban books about having a broken butt, now  Author Jason Tharp has reported that a school principal in Columbus Ohio, told him he wasn’t allowed to read his book “It’s okay to be a Unicorn” to kids anymore and that the children’s artwork they’d done subsequently had to be removed from display. Tharp was also told he could no longer read his other book “It’s okay to smell good” about being a skunk. Presumably colourful (mainly red and white I imagine) right wing alternative titles including, “It’s okay to determine what kids read based on your paranoid warped misogynist views of something that might be construed by a paranoid misogynist extremist anti-LGBTQ+ equality bigot as promoting the rights of people/unicorns that you feel – because ‘Merica – they ought not be able to have despite the Declaration of Independence saying otherwise” are too big to fit on the shelves? Probably not the author of that title but Interim District School Superintendent Jeremy Froehlich told WBNS that officials “just wanted to make sure that we vetted the book” and claimed that only a single parent had complained. So no appeal to the silent majority there then – I wonder if the single complainant was a funder/candidate/influential on the board of governors and the potential vetter of the book? Whoever it is he should heed the words of Danny Kaye and “Qwiiicht get out of town!”
  • Ok, what the actual fuck is going on in Texas? Governor Greg Abbott has noticed that as a Republican Governor it doesn’t matter if the things you do actively harm your own voters, so long as you get a bit of publicity for whatever fucked up thing you’re doing. Last week he announced that since Biden’s border policy was so terrible, he would charter buses to transport hordes of illegal immigrants to the steps of the Capitol in DC so that Biden had to deal with them instead. He kind of followed through this week, as a bus carrying a horde of about 30 people arrived outside the offices of Fox News in DC. On interviewing some of them, CNN reported that having started their immigration proceedings they had been offered a voluntary bus ride to DC, where they would be able to continue the process. Usually, charities and NGOs help immigrants to get settled in different areas of the US, but Abbott decided to spend taxpayer money instead so he could pretend he was sticking it to Biden. Never one to rest on his xenophobic laurels, Abbott also decided to exacerbate the supply chain and inflation problems for Texans by requiring all commercial trucks coming across the border into Texas to be inspected by border security. This has caused massive tailbacks and delays, with food rotting in trucks bound for stores in Texas and around the US.  While they haven’t actually found any illegal immigrants or drugs, because it was never really about that. It was about making problems in his own state worse so he can blame them on Biden.
  • His alliterative name being the only thing that makes him interesting Mark Meadows – Trump’s former chief of staff and major yammerer about how the 2020 election was stolen cos of widespread voter fraud, has done what we love to hear about on the show oh so very much. Investigations into voting irregularities have revealed actual voter fraud by one Mark Meadows. Macon County Board of Elections Director Melania Thibault said “What I found was that [Meadows] was registered to vote in Macon County and also registered in the state of Virginia where he voted in a 2021 election. The last election he voted in Macon County was in 2020.”  True to his trailer-trash form perhaps Meadows was registered in Macon County to an abandoned trailer, the former owner of the trailer said Meadows never visited the property, despite being registered there. Well he isn’t any longer  Meadows’ registration in Macon County was removed on April 11. All I can say from the point of view of my legal training from “America’s Grand Jury” is Hahahahahaaa and I don’t think you can vote from jail either when it comes to it MnM!
  • OK people, what the actual motherfucking fuck is happening in Tennessee? It’s like the entire Tennessee GOP saw Marsha Blackburn get a little bit of press for being a performative transphobe at KBJ’s confirmation hearing and said “hold my fucking beer”. Firstly, it seems that lawmakers in the state were only half-listening to Fox News’s regular foaming at the mouth about pedophilia and weren’t totally sure if they came down for or against, so they introduced a bill which would among other things, eliminate the lower age limit for marriage. Shockingly, the bill wasn’t introduced by Tennessee congressman John Rose, who met his wife when he was 42 and she was 17, but maybe it’s in his honor. You might think legalizing child marriage is tough to compete with, but leave it to State senator Frank Niceley. While supporting a bill to fine people experiencing homelessness for begging or camping near a highway, Niceley had this bit of advice for the homeless community: “I haven’t given y’all a history lesson in awhile, and I want to give you a little history on homelessness. 19 and 10, Hitler decided to live on the streets for awhile. So for two years Hitler lived on the streets and practiced his oratory and body language and how to connect with citizens, and then went on to lead a life that got him in the history books. So, a lot of these people — it’s not a dead end. They can come out of this, these homeless camps and have a productive life.” Fuuuuuuuuck me! If you apply yourself, you could end up as successful as Hitler!  Marsha made the news again, for a tweet saying “Tennesseans want a wall on our southern border” and after the past week I think a lot of people from Alabama, Georgia and Mississippi are thinking “yeah, we’re OK with that. Please wall yourselves off from us.” 
  • In a quiet week in British politics – yeah right! – The Prime Minister, nay Prime Suspect is now legally able to be called a convicted criminal as Boris has been in receipt of what will most likely be only the first of many fines from the Metropolitan police for breaking the law regarding gatherings during lockdown. The Chancellor Rishi Sunak also in receipt of a conviction, did the honourable thing and got talked out of resigning cos that would mean Boris would have to go too. Instead Rishi said that Boris had done the honourable thing and apologised, the usual Addams Family of Boris toadies agreed across the media and said it wasn’t as if he’d actually gone into care homes himself and spread covid and caused people directly to die… In an attempt to move us on from the trivialities of having British history’s only criminal in charge of the country – it’s a new thing for us folks! – the delightful bastard offspring of the child-catcher and Cruella Deville – Priti Patel – brokered a deal with Rwanda to take our deported asylum seekers, without bothering to put it to a vote in parliament – well they’re all off on Easter break eating their own chocolate jeeezusses. And for the measly sum of £120 million pounds given to the caring and community-focussed government there, oh no sorry rabid corrupt dictatorship, well I guess if you can’t ask your similarly-behaving friends for help who can you turn to for those post-Brexit opportunities. And it’s only 4 times as much as she’s already paid the French for not doing what her Home Office hasn’t done for years. Happy Holidays everyone.

That’s all for this week, thanks for listening!

Jim Cliff

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