JEFF PEARLMAN

Coming October 2022: "The Last Folk Hero: The Life and Myth of Bo Jackson"

Michigan’s Man of the Year

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In case you missed this one, tonight in a speech in New Hampshire Donald Trump told the attendees that he was once named Michigan’s Man of the Year.

An award that does not exist.

It’s not the first time he’s made such a claim. Back in 2016, according to various outlets, he boasted of being named Michigan’s Man of the Year, and even discussed the accompanying acceptance speech. This, from CNN’s Daniel Dale, is part of what the then-candidate said when recapping his Thank You address to the people of Michigan …

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This.

Never.

Happened.

The 45th president does so many illogical, dishonest things that it’s hard to keep track. He’s said he helped with the recovery after 9.11. Lie. He’s said a Boy Scouts leader called to praise a batshit insane speech to a jamboree. Lie. He cites growth numbers that aren’t real, takes credit for achievements he didn’t achieve. But what gets me with this one—the Michigan award—is he’s just (poof!) making something up that isn’t even slightly real. Like, does he actually think he won Michigan’s Man of the Year and delivered an acceptance speech? Is this merely an extended version of the pretend Time Magazine covers he had hanging in his golf clubs? Is there a difference between a lie and a fact to him?

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One of the things that bothers me most is the double standard we apply to this creature. We teach our children not to bully—then have them attend #MAGA rallies where the president mocks overweight people, disabled people, liberal people. We praise sharing and compassion—then elect the greediest crumb on the globe. We focus on truth—then digest his lies.

Imagine were one of the #MAGA loyalists to apply for a job and place MICHIGAN’S MAN OF THE YEAR beneath the Accomplishments section of a resume. Like, oh, this …

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He would be laughed out of the room. He’d be deemed insane. The people doing the hiring would be telling the story for years. “Remember that crazy dude who said he was Michigan’s Man of the Year. Now that was fucked up …”