If one thing is clear about this year, it is that here seem to be few is any consequences not just to lying, but to serial lying.
What is particularly remarkable about one candidate’s lies, is that he repeats them again and again, even after being caught, with no apparent sense of shame, or even awareness. I leave for psychiatrists and psychologists to determine whether his pathological lying is knowing and intentional, or reflecting an even deeper problem of cognition on his part.
In any event, the repetition provides the path to the antidote.
Because of this repetition, anyone who has watched enough Trump can tell as the lie starts what its about, and pretty quickly which version it will be. And, indeed, there is a significant database of previously analyzed and lie-confirmed, assertions.
Thus the TASS (Trump Assertion Scoring System). I trust that those old enough to remember the Soviet news Agency and its endlessly repeated and utterly predictable falsehoods will appreciate the joy of thinking of this name. Nor does it hurt that it could be written T-Ass — guess who. Of course, the system would really have to be deployed on both candidates.
TASS would be deployed on one or more news source networks, in the form of maybe a visual Pinocchio, or other graphic, maybe in the bottom letft of the screen, showing the accuracy or not of the current assertion. One could also use an icon system to note the percentage of lies in the speech. Indeed, the Washington Post Fact Checker already uses a Four Pinocchio scoring system. But it is not in real time. Polifact does some livechecking, but it seems to be text driven, and in any event not on the major network news feeds.
One real key — and one thing that can only be done for an endlessly repeating liar, is to have the documentation ready, but lots of that is there — see links above. A good system would share this documentation also in real time. Anyone watching the news on their computer or an app-driven device could obviously easily be given a link to follow to the documentation. A regular TV might use a modified ChromeCast to catch and display the link from the hearing assist text.
Staffing — probably needs a three of so to focus on different “facts” in the stream of assertions. Or it could be done by trained and supervised volunteers, online, with several checking each assertion, and a red label only being attached when most agree.
So, lets think about it.
Rachel Maddow, how about developing a mock-up TASS from a prior speech? Experiment with different visuals.