A satirical writer’s imagination of President Donald Trump in 2018 led to a fantasy script of the unconventional president going viral. In it, Trump was depicted as ordering White House staff to create an entire TV channel devoted to gorillas.
“To appease Trump, White House staff compiled a number of gorilla documentaries into a makeshift gorilla channel, broadcast into Trump’s bedroom from a hastily-constructed transmission tower on the South Lawn,” read an excerpt of the fabricated story published by the Twitter account @pixelatedboat. “However, Trump was unhappy with the channel they had created, moaning that it was ‘boring’ because ‘the gorillas aren’t fighting.'”
Despite being explicit satire, the fable was convincing to many of the same people on the internet who had been persuaded by the media since the start of Trump’s 2016 campaign that he is a “comic book villain.”
The latest conspiracies peddled by the Jan. 6 Committee this week, however, make the fictional tale of Trump’s beloved gorilla channel, posted below in full, appear far more believable. The tall tales coming from the show trial are just as farcical.
On Tuesday, the nine-member panel investigating the regime’s political dissidents brought forward Cassidy Hutchinson, a former aide to White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows.
Over her more than two hours of public testimony, Hutchinson gave lawmakers graphic but far-fetched details about a president gone mad as the riot unfolded on Capitol Hill. At one point, she testified with third-hand hearsay that Trump allegedly tried to violently hijack the presidential limousine to drive himself to the congressional chambers, saying “I’m the f’ing president, take me up to the Capitol now,” and lunging at the throat of his head of security.
The new narrative built entirely on uncorroborated hearsay fell apart hours after Hutchinson’s performance when her sources decided to go on the record to refute her testimony. NBC, CBS, and CNN each reported that Hutchinson’s sources were prepared to go under oath to testify that nothing she said ever happened.
When repeatedly pressed for corroboration on CNN, Jan. 6 Committee member Jamie Raskin, D-Md., stood by her testimony.
“Well, the story that she told is the evidence that I’m aware of,” Raskin said. “And I’ve not seen anything to contradict it.”
Tuesday’s unsubstantiated tales aside, Hutchinson’s debunked testimony is far from the only time the Jan. 6 Committee has made up claims to perpetuate its chosen narrative. In December, committee members deceptively manipulated text messages twice, and Cheney fabricated a false timeline of Jan. 6 to indict Trump as complicit in the chaos. Just last week, the committee lied about a DOJ attorney’s involvement in the president’s efforts to halt the certification of the election.
The entire Jan. 6 Committee is built on a conspiracy, weaponizing the levers of government after two failed impeachments to smear political dissidents as having orchestrated a fascist plot to take over the U.S. government. Trump, the story goes, corralled his supporters in Washington, inflamed the mob, and ordered them to overthrow Congress in a failed coup. Cheney painted this exact picture in a statement announcing her intent to impeach. Never mind that the president explicitly instructed his supporters gathered in the capital to protest “peacefully.”
Trump, however, is no stranger to opponents concocting conspiracies to indict him, whether it be allegations of manipulating the Postal Service to rig the election or serving in the Oval Office as a covert Russian agent. The Jan. 6 Committee has merely become the Democrats’ latest hoax, capitalizing on a friendly press eager to pass on portrayals of the former president as being engaged in ludicrous behavior no matter how credible. And yet, their base will still believe what they’re told.
At this rate, the Jan. 6 investigators might as well study whether Trump actually watched the gorilla channel — an equally unbelievable tale. News of the channel might not highlight any episodes of presidential malfeasance, but neither does the president telling a crowd of supporters to protest peacefully. Scenes from Animal Planet would just make far better television than the slow-going show trials, where ice cream is given out freely but adversarial questioning is banned.