Abduction in the Time of Trump

How to soothe a stomach after swallowing alternative facts.

Reading Walker Percy’s timeless classic “The Message in the Bottle” this morning, looking for answers. Not linguistic studies, per se, more a study of his overview of scientific method and me applying it to the news cycle as we receive it. Because we do receive it. Like communion from the church of the unholy, we hold out our hands and bow our heads in supplication. What shall be delivered unto us from the unholy church of Trump. Will it be the ridiculous, the sublime or just a plain old pack of lies?

From Percy I learn about scientific inquiry. The three logical components of scientific method. Pay attention here, we’ll quiz on it later. 1) DEDUCTION: explores the logical consequences of statements. 2) INDUCTION: seeks to establish facts 3) ABDUCTION: starts from the facts and seeks an explanatory theory.

Then I take those three components and apply them to how I interpret, extrapolate, and consider the “news” as it is delivered. The media seeks to induce, the “panels of experts” then deduce the consequences of the facts as the media presents them — easy peasy. Then walks in the abductionist who starts from facts and explains. The fault in the abductionist’s presentation of the news, these days, is the skewering of facts and the lies told bald faced to the open-face populace.

Trump’s Truths are not based on 1&2. His abductionist explanatory theories lack substance because they are not based on fact. Oh wait, yes they are, alternative facts. If only I was back in graduate school, sitting dumb-founded in my logics class, trying to create truths from statements — I could create an amazing amalgamation of what is perceived (an untruth), what is then disseminated (another untruth), compounded by a media confused and in disarray because what then is “truth” and it goes around and around.

Reality disseminated from the man in the white tower cannot be trust nor can it be believed. Anyone who is surrounded by only those who deliver the accepted alternative truth rather than actual reality is not only living in a fool’s paradise — they are also naked in their new clothes.

My daughter is about to lose her health insurance. With no policy to replace the Affordable Care Act, millions more stand to lose and lose big. How ironic are the ads on TV urging taxpayers to sign up or pay up (a minimum $698 penalty plays a prominent part in the ad’s message) to sign up for ACA? Blue Cross/Blue Shield NC has ads now, leading to a website I have not yet perused, but I assume is some sort of response to either the end of ACA or to make all NC residents happy in their one and only choice for insurance.

The man in the white tower cares not for established facts from outside sources. The voices in his head, always congratulatory and full of grandiose plans with little substance or form, will continue to be those of sycophants and mercenaries. Breitbart is ruling this country from the grave and no one seems to care…

It’s absurd to believe we can just sit by and watch the next four years go by and that it will all just be okay. It won’t be okay if WE merely observe. A land of couch potatoes taking to the streets in protest. Will it do any good? Skeptic me says no, the man is insulated from the truth and is fed pablum to bloat his already massive belly, is fed tainted wine to bloat his already massive ego, and his skin is coated with scented oils of deceit. Children and women will die because of his policies. Children and women will die with no healthcare. My daughter. Your daughter, your grandchildren could die.

Use any of the three scientific methods of inquiry but base your own ideas and conclusions on the truth. Not alternative facts. Without access to healthcare, people die. It’s not a women’s issue. It’s your mother, your daughter — sure — but it’s your son too. Women aren’t the only ones who go to the doctor. Duh.



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Valerie MacEwan

The Dead Mule @deadmule writer, thinker, advocate for an ethical society, publisher www.deadmule.com online for 25 years.