Ladies and gentlemen, behold, some s*** the president said during the previous week:
“I’m viewing the great citizens of this country to a certain extent and to a large extent as warriors. They’re warriors. We can’t keep our country closed. We have to open our country…Will some people be affected badly? Yes.”5/5/2020 in Arizona.
The question was, “Why is now the time to reopen the country?” Note the total lack of an answer. Just a blanket assertion that “we can’t” stay closed. No reasoning. He closes with a tacit admission that this decision will cost American lives. Of course it will.
What got our president all hot and bothered enough to trigger a midnight tweetstorm this time? Here it is. It’s Project Lincoln’s Mourning in America ad, which I do recommend. By the way, I’m all for the idea that no one should be copying Ronald Reagan but if that’s Donald Trump’s new line then someone should let him know Reagan’s 1980 campaign slogan was “Let’s Make America Great Again.”
No, this familiar laundry list of boasts still isn’t true.
I should mention that, simply by mentioning this ad and all its producers, our president ensured that the ad was viewed millions of times, thus proving the ad’s point that our president’s lack of self control has led him to counter productive decisions throughout his time in office.
It’s amazing. Here we are with 1,500 Americans dying every single day to COVID-19 with all sorts of scientific, logistical, and political challenges lingering for day after day, week after week, month after month. Do we have enough swabs? How are we sourcing reagent for the tests? What’s the error rate of these tests? Which epidemiological model has performed best, and what do they say about the efficacy of stay-at-home orders and public mask-wearing? We aren’t having any of these conversations. Instead, we’re sitting here in the middle of the night talking about which people are doody-heads.
“Katie, she tested very good for a long period of time, and then all of a sudden she tested positive…this is why the whole concept of tests isn’t necessarily great…today, for some reason, she tested positive.”5/8/2020, at the White House.
I’m going to stand up for the president a bit. Many assumed Trump was blaming tests for being negative before someone gets infected as if it was proof that the earlier tests were wrong. After listening to the whole quote though, he seems to be rightfully warning against the false security that daily testing can provide, because people can still become infected between tests. Alas, at the moment this is a problem unique to the president and his inner circle. The rest of us have nowhere near these kinds of resources.
“You know there are a lot of people who don’t believe in such big testing.”5/6/2020 at the White House.
Ok, now here is Donald Trump speaking against the concept of mass testing for coronavirus. Not only are there no legitimate experts whom believe this, we know Donald Trump doesn’t believe it. He and everyone near him are tested every single day.
“Sporadic for you, but not sporadic for a lot of other people. Because I’ve heard the opposite, that they are loaded up with gowns now and, you know initially we had nothing. We had empty cupboards.”5/6/2020 at the White House.
That’s what sporadic means.
“Well, I’ll be honest, uh, I have a lot of things going on.”5/5/2020 interview with David Muir.
Yeah, important things, like tweeting about television ads at one in the morning. This interview followed President Trump’s tour of a mask factory while he refused to wear one and “Live and Let Die” blared from a loudspeaker. After Trump repeated his lie that Obama had left the medical equipment stockpile bare, Muir smartly asks what Trump had done about that in 3.5 years. His answer? Uh, he was busy.
“[FBI Director Christopher Wray] was appointed by Rod Rosenstein, and a lot of things are coming out. I would be absolutely entitled – in theory, I’m chief law enforcement officer – in theory.”5/8/2020 Fox and Friends interview.
FBI Director is a presidential appointment and Donald Trump actually appointed Wray via Twitter, so we don’t have to wonder how that went down. There is also a longstanding American tradition of maintaining a degree of separation between presidents and law enforcement so as to avoid the appearance of political prosecution, which is something Trump just plain doesn’t care about. On the contrary, he seems to revel in the possibility of prosecuting his detractors.
That’s our report for this week. Be sure to check out the links for more info on any particular topic and, as always, thanks for reading.