As Donald Trump continues to generate more “Fake News” than the news media that he projects his own lying ways upon, he expanded his repertoire today by moving on from politically-motivated lies to meteorological misleading.
Trump has been filling his Twitter feed with updates on Hurricane Dorian, the category five storm hovering over the Bahamas with enormously destructive power and headed towards the U.S. mainland in a highly uncertain course.
None of which should be a problem, although most people would be well advised to check with the National Hurricane Center or the National Weather Service before going to the president’s tweets for the latest storm updates.
The problem is that when it comes to hurricanes, Trump just doesn’t know what he’s talking about. He already proved that earlier today when he claimed that he had never even heard of a category five hurricane, despite having lived through three others of that magnitude just since he took office.
His melange of misinformation continued later in the day when Trump caused panic among residents of Alabama by mistakenly including the state on a list of areas that will “likely be hit (much) harder than anticipated” from the strengthening storm.
In addition to Florida – South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia, and Alabama, will most likely be hit (much) harder than anticipated. Looking like one of the largest hurricanes ever. Already category 5. BE CAREFUL! GOD BLESS EVERYONE!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 1, 2019
While the slow-moving Hurricane Dorian — with wind speeds of up to 200 MPH and projected 20 foot storm surges — has a wide range of possible paths to take to hit landfall in the continental United States, only the most remote possibilities at this point include a path that would take it to the shores of Alabama on the Gulf of Mexico.
Trump’s tweets forced the National Weather Service’s Birmingham Office to divert resources that could otherwise be monitoring the hurricane to issue an unprecedented retraction of a presidential emergency warning in a tweeted correction to the president’s unofficial forecast.
— NWS Birmingham (@NWSBirmingham) September 1, 2019
While this is good news for the people of Alabama, if America had a president with an ounce of intelligence, much trouble and concern could have been averted.
At least this one of the few times that Trump’s misinformation was more likely a mistake rather than a deliberate lie for his own benefit. Still, the president who cried wolf hasn’t helped his already enormous credibility chasm with his distribution of erroneous information, no matter how well-meaning he may have been trying to be.
Next time, Trump should just leave it to the professionals.
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Original reporting by David Edwards at RawStory.
Vinnie Longobardo is a 35-year veteran of the TV, mobile & internet industries, specializing in start-ups and the international media business. His passions are politics, music and art.