“Wow,” I thought, “Andy Schmookler is onto something” (with his Dec. 16 column "What Makes People Vulnerable to Lies?”). What I had hoped for was a discussion about how a badly-divided nation can come to grips with political parties and factions who sucker and “play” us. What I got instead was the standard “woke” bumper-sticker attack on traditional American morality. The author beat the same old leftist canards; the problem begins in the family, he told us, reinforced by nationalism and topped off with an unhealthy dollop of conformity.

His article ignored major contemporary examples of falsehood campaigns altogether. One wonders if Mr. Schmookler has grappled with two of the biggest lies of the past decade: the force-fed and finely choreographed system of fabrications and innuendo known as the “Russian Collusion theory” and the assertion that the Hunter Biden laptop story was bogus and thus properly expunged from all public discourse.

I suspect that he has not allowed himself the same scrutiny on these topics; perhaps because he himself has become vulnerable to the lies of the left?

Dennis Barlow, New Market

(7) comments


Spot on !


There seems to be no lack of QAnon believers in the New Market area.


…and so Mr. Barlow continues the game…A shameful piece from the Vice Chair of the Shenandoah County School Board. What a terrible example to set for our youth.

Steve F

A fairly brief reading of the Mueller report would show the gravity of what was found. With the DOJ under Trump control, nothing was going to come of it. The hand picked attorney general doctored what the public heard and that swayed public opinion. We also see a similar affect with the Trump Treasury Department not bothering to audit their president.


Mr. Barlow shows his bias and tunnel vision when making the absurd declaration of "two of the biggest lies of the past decade..." We know for a fact now that Trump corrupted the IRS. We know that Trump corrupted the DoJ. And now with the Report from the Jan. 6th Committee, we know he corrupted everyone around him. And yet, he is still GOP Candidate #1 for president, and Ben Cline has affirmed he will vote for him in 2024.

Republicans can no longer "ignore major contemporary examples of falsehood campaigns altogether": Donald Trump's Big Lie and subsequent conspiracy to block the peaceful transfer of power. The Report headings summarize:

1. The Big Lie.

2. “I just want to find 11,780 votes.”

3.  Fake Electors and the “President of the Senate” Strategy.

4. “Just call it corrupt and leave the rest to me.”

5. “A coup in search of a legal theory.”

6. “Be there. Will be wild!”

7.  187 minutes of dereliction.

8.  Analysis of the attack.

The leader of Mr. Barlow's party pushed the biggest lie in American history, and a that lie resulted in violent, destructive, lethal attempted insurrection.

Josh Wilberger

Excellent observations. Often the door swings one way as the comments illustrate.

Brad Skipper

This coming from the man that ignores our Pledge of Allegiance by pledging his support instead to the Lost Cause, as well as his military Oath of Office to defend our Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic. How sad, how twisted must one be to regale the soldiers of rebellion that killed anyone carrying the American flag?

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