Napoleon the Pig makes himself ruler of the Animal Farm in Orwell’s 1945 book by lying about Snowball, his rival Pig, and blaming the destructive acts of the former human Farmer Jones on poor Snowball. He is driven away from the farm by the farm dogs whom Napoleon has taught to think since they were puppies. This, even though Snowball was actually the hero of the animal rebellion that drove the humans away. Collusion? Perhaps. But definitely a lie. And the PIG Napoleon, once in power begins to keep all improvements to living conditions for the PIGs. Other animals, he says, are happier with a simpler, hard-working life. The PIGs begin to dress like men and walk upright and wear long red ties.
Keith Olbermann in the video is very much like Benjamin the Donkey, who is cynical and skeptical about Napoleon’s methods. He also reads as well as any Pig. When Boxer the workhorse is wounded defending the farm against neighboring farmers who attack and destroy the windmill, he shrugs off the the wound and works at rebuilding the windmill until he collapses. Then Napoleon declares Boxer will only get better if he’s taken to the vet’s animal hospital. But he calls the Knacker (the man who renders dead horses into glue) to take Boxer away. Benjamin calls him out. He points out that it says “Knacker” on the van that takes Boxer away, not “veterinarian”. He points out that Russian Facebook trolls used targeted troll-posts to help get Napoleon his position of power. But Napoleon gets away with his lies. Boxer apparently dies in the so-called animal hospital.
Now, I am not sure which tiny animal on the farm Robert Reich is like, but he is pointing out in this video that once the PIGS got themselves into power on the animal farm, they lie in order to get their agenda operating, enriching all PIGs (or is that GOPs?) and their political donors. They are doing it all by LYING. Pigs lie. We should have learned that lesson by now. They don’t care who dies and gets rendered into glue.
In 1945 Orwell intended Napoleon to be a satire of Joseph Stalin in communist Russia. But I truly believe, as we are living on the Animal Farm now as the hard-working farm animals, that he has a bad wig on his head with whippy straw-yellow hair, and a distinctly orange face, with the same little piggy eyes he always had. And he is in power because he tells lies. And what’s worse, he gets away with the lies. As long as the PIGs are in power, controlling both houses of congress and the Supreme Court, he will not lose his lying grip on the farm. We are all doomed to continue being hard-working animals who eventually get rendered into glue.