It’s Corker’s po-tay-to against the ad­min­is­tra­tion’s po-tah-to

Star Tribune - - EDITORIALS READERS WRITE - KENT BAI­LEY, Rochester ROBERT E. ROBERT­SON, Eden Prairie

Sarah Huck­abee San­ders, in a re­cent news briefing, said that U.S. Sen. Bob Corker is en­ti­tled to his own opin­ions but not his own facts. (This is a fa­mous and beloved quote by Daniel Pa­trick Moynihan.) As a “fact,” she pro­vided the fol­low­ing: “The fact is, this pres­i­dent has been an in­cred­i­bly strong leader on for­eign pol­icy and na­tional se­cu­rity. And he’s been a leader on this front, and I think that’s been seen and demon­strated time and time again since he took of­fice.”

What we have here is a se­ri­ous prob­lem with agree­ing on the def­i­ni­tion of a “fact.” Her ex­am­ple of a fact is, it has to be said, an opin­ion, as any­one with even a nod­ding ac­quain­tance with the English lan­guage would have to agree. So this re­sponse pro­vides a new win­dow into the Trump ad­min­is­tra­tion. Those in the ad­min­is­tra­tion feel en­ti­tled to present their opin­ions as facts, and to quote a beloved states­man as sup­port­ing their right to dis­count op­pos­ing state­ments as mere opin­ions.

• • •

I pre­sume the Star Tri­bune’s edi­tors re­al­ize they are partly to blame for the Trump-hate in Min­nesota and the rest of the coun­try. Many days they have al­lowed ob­vi­ously slanted sto­ries (New York Times) or false or twisted items in the opin­ion sec­tion. For ex­am­ple, in Wed­nes­day’s pa­per they printed a let­ter from a wo­man who says that she and oth­ers will not let the govern­ment and male politi­cians strip away the right to use birth con­trol! Both the edi­tors and the writer know that will never be pro­posed.

Thank you for not us­ing Steve Sack ev­ery day. Wed­nes­day’s car­toon was an­other of his worst. Trump has given the North Kore­ans a warn­ing mes­sage to stop them in their tracks (as we did to Rus­sia to start the Cold War), and Sack is lead­ing peo­ple to as­sume it will has­ten con­flict!

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