Jeron Criswell Konig was a bullshit artist of rare ability. As The Amazing Criswell he had a long -- albeit sporadic & erratic -- career as a psychic. He gave good interviews, was a hit at parties, and his predictions were so crazy and off the wall that nobody could believe him but they were all entertained by him.
The thing about crazy predictions, however, is that occasionally you roll a natural.
Criswell’s best known prediction that came true was “bedbugs in Boston” in which he predicted an infestation of cimex lectularius in Beantown.
And wouldn’t ya know it -- a few months after he made this prediction, there was an outbreak of bedbugs in Boston.
Criswell banked off that wild shot prediction for much of the rest of his career.
He never brought up the literally hundreds of other predictions he made that came nowhere near reality.
Like all other psychics, Criswell made his nickel off the hits and carefully brushed all the misses aside.*
Trump uses Criswell’s playbook.
He makes outrageous claims and statements, equivocating them when pressed, saying they were just “quotes” or generalities, but when there is a hit, he’s quick to take credit.
Recently there has been an arrest in the wave of bomb threats directed against synagogues and other Jewish centers in the U.S. and Canada. What’s surprising is that the arrest was in Israel.
The suspect is a teenager with apparently some severe mental problems.**
In a normal news environment, this would result in a tsk-tsk. We’d shake our heads at the irony that the trouble was caused by a Jewish teen for reasons unknown, but while we could admit we should never judge a situation until all the facts are known, at the same time we also have to admit the odds of a threat of violence against a synagogue coming from an anti-Semite are much greater that the odds of that threat coming from within their community.
But in our current environment, nothing is normal. Do not feign surprise when Trump struts like a little orange peahen, claiming to have been “right” all along.
He’s nothing but a bullshit artist, same as Criswell.
But Criswell had more class.
* Another show biz entertainer, The Amazing Randi, has taken great delight in exposing the frauds who prey on the gullible, and is quick to document the failings of any person who claims precognitive abilities. There are a lot of them, and I’m ashamed to admit that an inordinate number are banging Bibles.
** How severe? The Israeli teen was found unfit for compulsory military service by the Israeli defense forces. Dude, you gotta be six kinds of fncked up not to get drafted by Israel.