September 2018 marks the 45th anniversary of the 1973 coup in which the CIA helped remove the democratically elected (but leftist!) president of Chile, and replaced him with the military dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet. We're celebrating the anniversary by having Jeopardy!'s Ken Jennings school us all month on real-life dictators of all kind. Autocratic leaders always have a dim view of actual facts, from ancient Rome up to, well, today, but that's no excuse for us to believe all kinds of silly fake news about them.
The Debunker: Did Mussolini Make the Trains Run on Time?
Today, the fact that "Mussolini made the trains run on time" is usually raised sardonically, in recognition of the fact that even the worst political situations can have trivial upsides. It's the fascist version of "Every cloud has a silver lining." The problem with the fact (besides the iffy utility of a proverb that means "Fascism is efficient!") is that it's not historically accurate.