One day and five years ago, as I write this, Donald Trump created what became perhaps his most self-defining and iconic tweet: “Despite the constant negative press covfefe.” It was self-defining and iconic because it began in paranoia and ended in gibberish, and as gibberish it wasn’t even a complete sentence. It became, in short, a metaphor for Trump’s single term of office.
Of course, the word Trump was so artlessly groping for back then was almost certainly the word “coverage.” It was like Marjorie Taylor Greene’s “peach tree dishes” gaffe. It was a non-word that clearly meant something else. But what was remarkable about it was he let this half-finished sentence stand without removal or correction. In fact, I believe the tweet remained on his account until the day Twitter deleted his account. Trump’s account was deleted because he spread dangerous lies about the January 6 insurrection.
At his latest Nuremberg-style rally on Saturday in Casper, Wyoming, Donald Trump mentioned his covfefe tweet again. This time he billed it as “the biggest tweet I ever did.” It was big, of course, because it was mute testimony that the president of the United States was out of his mind. It was a cautionary tweet, alerting the world that the next four years were going to be scary indeed. And so they proved to be.
Trump went to the rally to make several easily disprovable claims. First he told the Wyoming crowd that their House Representative, Liz Cheney, was in trouble. “We’re going to vote out this atrocious RINO, and we’re going to replace her with a Conserviv [sic] warrior from a place called Wyoming.”
Actually, Liz Cheney is doing very well and will capture the nomination easily. She will defeat the nobody challenger Harriet Hageman, a Republican you may safely forget. She will also probably win the election in November, just as she has done since 2009.
Trump claimed that his biggest tweet of all time was the one where he claimed Obama spied on his campaign. He claimed it was later proven true, when in fact it was later proven false.
Trump said that the way to stop the war in Ukraine is to take down the windmills (what he meant to call wind farms) which “kills all the birds and destroys the environment” and which are, presumably, driving up the price of gas. Of course that is nonsense. Putin is driving up the price of gas, together with the greedy oil companies, and they are also driving up the price of everything else as a result.
Trump also claimed that the price of gas is 9 dollars. It’s actually at $4.21 less than half that. He claimed that when he left office the price of gas was $1.87. It was actually at $2.42.
“Now you look at the so-called word ‘insurrection,’ Trump bloviated. “Insurrection” is actually a real word, by the way. Trump went on to say, “January 6, what a lotta crap. And most of this country knows it. You know who else knows it? The Democrats. It’s just another con job like Russia Russia Russia. This was made up by Hillary Clinton and the Democrats. Total, fake story.” January 6 was, of course, captured on numerous digital recordings and has been played endlessly across the media. It was real, not made up.
Trump also claimed that the Russian ruble is at an all-time high. The Russian ruble is actually at an all-time low. Nobody benefits from this particular piece of disinformation except Vladimir Putin, of course.
And so on. Trump’s lies, like the non-word “covfefe,” constitute invented gibberish that say more about him than anything else. But it’s important to remember that this man became president of the United States once, he was elected by Americans, and easily disprovable crazy crap is sometimes all it takes to convince certain stupid people of certain stupid things. And, as ever, ladies and gentlemen, brothers and sisters, comrades and friends, stay safe.
Robert Harrington is an American expat living in Britain. He is a portrait painter.