NOTE: This post is a political one.

As the plague continues, one wants to stay informed. We have questions, and we want answers. Is the spread slowing? How many people have we lost? How many have recovered? Are those treating the sick doing OK? How is the development of treatments and vaccines coming along? When will we be free to roam the Earth again?

Can we just get some news?

Unfortunately, getting this information is challenging. Pretty much every media outlet in the USA is framing every piece of information as a referendum on President Trump.

FOX News wants to frame all information as proof that Trump is doing a fabulous job. Almost every other national platform is trying to frame all information as proof that Trump is evil. No creature that ever walked the Earth is as evil as Trump.

There isn’t anyone merely stating facts and letting the people decide for themselves. And we the sheep – er, uh, I mean, people – are behaving exactly as the media wants us to. We are taking reports that align with our personal bias, posting and re-posting them all over social media. We’re screaming in ALL CAPS, “anyone who disagrees with this is evil and deserving of death.”

As I’ve said many times before, I didn’t vote for Trump or Clinton in 2016. As long as the Libertarian Party nominates someone more developed than an aardvark, that person is who I will vote for. Because even an aardvark will be more qualified than Trump or Biden to be President, in my opinion. (Did you notice that I didn’t scream that anyone who disagrees with me is wrong? You Republicans and Democrats could learn something there.)

What is working?

A Twitter friend of mine, who supports Trump, posted some tweets questioning Joe Biden. He believes Trump’s response has been an epic failure, every step, every turn, every day. The tweets asked questions:

  1. 12/31-China finally tells the WHO about the virus. Would you have known something on that date that the rest of the world didn’t know and start working on it then?
  2. 12/31-China says, “I think we are quite capable of killing it in the beginning phase.” The WHO told the world. What would you have done THAT day?
  3. 1/11, the first China death was announced-Had you been Trump. what would you have done differently?
  4. 1/14-What would you have done differently had you been Trump when the WHO said there was no clear evidence of human-to-human transmission?
  5. 1/17, the decision was made to divert Americans returning from infected areas to get screened-Had you been Trump, what would you have done differently?
  6. 1/24, the CDC says, “based on what we know right now, the immediate risk to America remains low.” What would you have done differently?
  7. 1/27, the CDC urged Americans not to travel to China-Had you been Trump, what would you have done differently? Was the CDC racist?
  8. 1/28, Trump expands airport screenings & institutes mandatory quarantines-what would you have done differently?
  9. 1/31, Trump bans travel from China the day after WHO declares a global emergency-What would you have done differently?
  10. What would you have done differently than Trump to compel the FDA to allow the CDC’s Jan 23 request to use its new virus test, yet the FDA didn’t approve it until Feb 4?
  11. Trump creates the WH Coronavirus Task Force on Jan 20, after he convened the best of the best to work on it. How long would it have taken you to gather these same people?

What went wrong?

Some things could have been done differently on the Federal level.

  1. Were we prepared for this outbreak? Oh, good Gawd, no. We have seen that despite the efforts of both the 44th and 45th presidents, our medical and healthcare infrastructure is as awful as it can be. We were criminally low on essential emergency medical supplies in the event of a sudden health emergency. But that’s probably been true since we recovered from the Great Flu of 1918. We need to stockpile some of these things. And whoever is President in 2076 will need to ignore the people that will be peeing on the Tricentennial parade by bloviating about the waste of stockpiling unneeded supplies for over 50 years.
  2. The President’s juvenile behavior with reporters in the daily briefings has been ridiculous. Everyone already knows that the people from ABC, CBS, NBC, NPR, and the vast majority of the nation’s 50 largest newspapers are run by registered Democrats, and you can’t be a good Democrat if you don’t hate Trump with every ounce of your being. So yeah, they’re going to come at him with criticism and assumption that everything he does is wrong. Mr. President, you’re supposed to be above all that. Calling reporters names and dismissing the actual question behind their grandstanding is unnecessary. It makes you look thin-skinned and petty. Stop it.
  3. The people on the task force are brilliant. But there’s a lot of “bureaucrat” in some of them, especially Dr. Fauci. He has been far too dismissive of the treatments developed in other countries because they haven’t gone through the 47 levels of approval that the USA requires.

Conclusion

I think, given the circumstances, the US government could have done better and could have done much worse. A mixed bag – which is my opinion of the Trump presidency as a whole. Some good, some terrible, with both the good and terrible more on the extreme ends than I would like.

I will continue to pray every day for the plague to wind down, for a minimum of deaths, and for human beings to love each other more. And I can’t wait to vote for the Libertarian aardvark.