“Once you start down the dark path…” Longing for Honesty from the President

Friends of Padre Steve’s World,

Thomas Jefferson once noted “Honesty is the first chapter of the book wisdom.” It is a lesson that the President, his spokespeople, and his flacks should learn. However after observing them on the campaign trail for nearly two years, and in the nearly five months since the election I doubt if the President  or his advisors have the capacity for this. With every day there is a new revelation of untruthfulness. On Monday FBI Director James Comey basically said that the President and his spokespeople were lying about their connections to Russia, and their allegations that the Obama administration had been spying on them. To way the President respond on Twitter and to be shot down in real time was discouraging for anyone that esteems the office of the Presidency.

The web of untruths concocted by the President and his advisors is stunning. I did not think that it was possible and I really hoped that once they had won the election that a modicum of sanity would take root and grow as the President and his administration dealt with the reality of the office. But that is not happening and it seems to me that they keep adding to the fire and with every new statement, with every new botched riposte to damning allegations, with every new  tweet and twitter storm, it looks like they are covering things that might be worse than any of us had imagined just a few months ago. Sadly for the nation and for the esteem of the office of the Presidency, the untruths, the shifting of blame, the deflections, and misdirection are destroying any credibility that President Trump might have had. Abraham Lincoln said that “If you once forfeit the confidence of your fellow citizens, you can never regain their respect and esteem.”

That confidence that citizens give a new President is rapidly evaporating as the web of deceit grows on a daily basis. I wish that the President and his advisors could just admit the times when they were wrong, admit the times when the facts are not on their side rather than making up alternative facts, alternative truths, and alternative history. I long for the day when they will heed the words of Sophocles in Antigone, “All men make mistakes, but a good man yields when he knows his course is wrong, and repairs the evil. The only crime is pride.” 

All of us can learn from our mistakes, even the mistake of being factually inaccurate once in a while. But when one continues to be untrue, when one compounds a lie with another lie, and another and another, it no longer is a simple mistake, it becomes the web from which escape is impossible.

For a leader, especially the President, this behavior is not only destructive to them as people, but to the esteem of the office that they hold, and detrimental to the people that they serve.

I long for honesty from this administration. I wanted this President to be successful and to be all of our President. I would hope that maybe something will happen to make him change his course and speak truth, admit error, and apologize for those that he has used his power to demean, destroy, and harm. But I fear that the President’s journey down the dark path of life has gone so far that it has consumed anything that might have been human in him. As Yoda said, “Once you start down the dark path, forever will it dominate your destiny, consume you it will.” 

So have a great day,


Padre Steve+



Filed under ethics, News and current events, philosophy, Political Commentary

3 responses to ““Once you start down the dark path…” Longing for Honesty from the President

  1. JoeKoffee

    I feel the President is irredeemable. It is not that he’s gone too far down the dark road; no, I believe he’s trod that path, consistently, all his life. He is lost to goodness, light, and truth.
    What needs to be addressed, then, are the self-concerned executives around him, whom I sense are equally, hopelessly corrupt, and his delusionally hopeless base of loyal true believers, those stupid, faithful, believing souls who hate to think for themselves, who love demonizing “the Other,” and who long for a strong man who will think for them, who has all the answers, and “who alone can save them.”
    Those last need desperately to be broken of their delusion, enlightened & educated regarding the true and actual state of things, and, ideally, forced into the to-them awful, tortuous, painful necessity of thinking, reasoning, & making decisions for themselves.
    Trump is broken and can never change. His power and agency can only be broken by destroying his foundation – the greedy self-servers with something to gain from him, and the puling idiots who believe he cares one bit about anyone besides himself.

    • padresteve

      I like you think he went down that path so long ago that he can never get off. I remember during the campaign telling people to look at his business and personal life and see if they could trust him. I was rebuffed so many times. I don’t know how anyone thought he could change. I wanted it to be so but I never believed he could get off the path. Now his deluded followers will find out for themselves. It will be a hard lesson for them, but no matter how hard I try I still have a sense of schadenfreude toward many of them.

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