In President Obama's final State of the Union address to Congress, he decided to counter with some calm talk the fear tactics of Donald Trump and the other Republicans striving to replace him.
For nearly an hour, he argued that both the economic and national security calamities they were citing amounted to "political hot air." Domestically, he noted the halving of the nation's unemployment rate and the federal deficit, and he insisted that American military supremacy remained unchallenged abroad.
He argued that "it's not even close" that America "is the most powerful nation on Earth, period," and that the threat of the Islamic State and its terrorism was not comparable to "the dangers of the Cold War, when the Soviet Union posed an existential threat."
Such reassurances are not likely to quell fears being fed by Trump and the others on the home front. But at least they are an effort to combat the wave of manufactured panic by the master of exaggeration and deceit who is the current frontrunner for the Republican nomination, and his copycats.