Neither the claim that Trump appreciates the vital role of the American judiciary nor the claim that he consulted unusually widely in making his choice is true. What’s more troubling in some ways is that neither claim is even a proper lie intended to trick people.
…The bullshitter, as Frankfurt wrote in his seminal essay on the subject, “does not care whether the things he says describe reality correctly. He just picks them out, or makes them up, to suit his purpose.”
…But in addition to whatever flattery he offered Trump in private, he was so thirsty for the president’s approval that he chose to gild the lily in his public remarks and then reemphasize loyalty to Trump during sworn testimony.
The impression it creates is of a man who is willing to say things that aren’t true to advance his career prospects in really marginal ways. A reasonable observer would conclude that he’d be willing to say things that aren’t true when his fate is truly on the line. And, indeed, that’s what we’ve seen him do in the past.