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Old 03-12-2020, 01:04 PM
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Trump administration incompetence with regards to coronavirus -- need more examples!


His speech last night was scattered and full of errors, among them:
  • Erroneous claims about what insurance companies would cover
  • A ban on all travel and cargo from Europe, except not really cargo and not from the UK, oh, and not US citizens either
  • No actionable advice except "wash your hands"
I'm sure this is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the incompetence these guys have exhibited so far. We've been saying since 2015 that Trump was unfit to lead this country, and now he's proving it.

I'm canvassing in Wisconsin the next few weekends and I'm sure this will be a common topic. I'd love to have talking points about what a competent administration would have done and said differently, and how that would have changed what's happening.

Bring it on, Dopers!
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Old 03-12-2020, 01:13 PM
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As it happens, I was recently composing a list of such things to send to my parents, who are Trump supporters and refuse to hear anything negative about him. But now they're endangering their lives with their willful ignorance, so I wanted to point out the following to them:

• As a nation, we were aware of the outbreak in China 3 months ago, yet the administration did almost nothing until about 3 weeks ago. Sure, they suspended travel for China – but that was much too late. The virus was already here. Still, that didn’t stop Republicans from mocking the epidemic by wearing gas masks on the floor of the House and deriding concerns about the virus at CPAC as a “Democrat(ic) hoax.”

• There were perfectly good test kits being manufactured in Germany and available to us through WHO, but instead of importing those, the administration insisted on making their own.

• Their first attempt at making test kits failed. The kits had to be recalled due to giving many false positive results.

• Private industry/research facilities finally ramped up manufacture of test kits. But the administration insists that all approval for testing must go through the CDC. It takes weeks to get results, even for the very few that have been tested so far.

• Trump said anyone who wants to be tested can be tested because there are enough kits. That is a lie. To date, there are 75,000 kits (they claim without evidence) with a promise to increase to 2 million by next week. (NEXT WEEK!!) Go ahead. Try and get tested. You won’t be able to, yet.

• The administration currently plans to charge for both test kits and any vaccine that is developed. Can you think of a single other epidemic where individual citizens were charged for these things? Hint: You can’t, because no administration has ever allowed that to happen. Disgusting.

• The administration removed any reference to how many people have been/are being tested from the CDC website, saying only that the number “keeps changing.” Umm, duh.

• The CDC concluded that older Americans shouldn’t fly. Trump’s White House BLOCKED CDC officials from making that recommendation.

• As best can be determined, fewer than 5,000 people have actually been tested to date. This is a huge problem, since no one, including medical personnel and/or business people can get a handle on the vectors where the disease is most active to make the best plans for dealing with it.

• Trump tried to keep the Grand Princess cruise ship from docking, because he worried it would affect “his numbers.” I’m kidding, right? No.

• As of this morning, the administration still could not articulate a clear plan via Ben Carson for how to handle the passengers disembarking from the cruise ship. They will disburse them to various military installations around the country for quarantine. That’s pretty much all we know at this point.

• Trump continues to push the lie that COVID-19 is “just like the flu.” It’s not just like the flu. No one has any immunity to it. There is no vaccine for it. We don’t even yet know how long the virus can survive on a surface.

• Trump continues to push the lie that a vaccine will be available in “a month or two.” There will not be a vaccine for at least a year, and more likely 18 months. That’s if we get lucky.

• The administration deactivated the White House pandemic task force that President Obama had put in place to proactively deal with upcoming new diseases in the wake of H1-N1 and Ebola epidemics. Oops.

I listed these about a week ago so they are obviously already much out of date. I did not remove my own editorial comments. But at least it will give you a starting place.
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Old 03-12-2020, 01:13 PM
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Go watch the last few days/weeks of "A Closer Look" with Seth Meyers and clips from Trevor Noah. I'm sure the other hosts do plenty of it as well, but those are the two that I happen to watch and they've spent a lot of time on exactly what you're looking for. IIRC, one of them pointed to Trump saying (paraphrased) "there's 15 cases right now, I think we should have close to zero cases within a week" as the single worst presidential prediction ever.

Something else to look into is the way Trump, his kids and Fox News have been trying to spin coronavirus into either a hoax or suggesting that democrats want people to bring it here and [/i]want[/i] thousands/millions to die from it specifically so we can crucify Trump for it.
At the same time, while at the CDC he said he'd prefer if we left the people stuck on cruise ships out at sea. Screw the people that might still be healthy, he said he didn't want the number of sick people in the states to increase just because the ship disembarked here.

So, while they're accusing democrats of attempting to politicize this, they're also blatantly ignoring actual heath officials, seemingly more concerned about statistics and money.
Remember, this is the same person that tore apart the NOAA for daring to have a weather report that was different than the one he made up.
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Old 03-12-2020, 01:22 PM
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Trump himself might be infected.
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Old 03-12-2020, 01:31 PM
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We may get a President Pelosi yet!
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Old 03-12-2020, 01:37 PM
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After encountering a flu (I quarantined myself) that could have been corona (in a few days there will be no way to know since there is no testing and the state told me I made just too much to qualify for health care this year) I would not want him to die from it, but suffering a bit will be ok. But, it is likely that in this case the Germaphobia of Trump will save him, reportedly he already washes hands maniacally and uses a lot of disinfectant.

Last edited by GIGObuster; 03-12-2020 at 01:38 PM.
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Old 03-12-2020, 01:53 PM
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His speech last night was scattered and full of errors
If an official spokesman for the administration had screwed up a public statement that badly, they would justifiably be fired for incompetence.

But this is far worse. Trump isn't just the purpose who's supposed to be delivering the speech. He's the guy who's supposed to be making decisions and setting policies. Yet we just saw that he isn't even capable of reading the policy off a teleprompter.

So who's in charge if Trump can't do the job? Is Pence calling the shots behind the scenes? Do they treat Trump like Henry Blake and have Radar put papers in front of him and tell him to sign them?

Although that's an unfair comparison to Henry Blake. He was a poor leader but a competent doctor. Trump was a failure as a businessman before becoming a failure as a President.
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Old 03-12-2020, 02:06 PM
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I listed these about a week ago so they are obviously already much out of date. I did not remove my own editorial comments. But at least it will give you a starting place.
Holy smokes, great list. Thank you!
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Old 03-12-2020, 02:18 PM
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If an official spokesman for the administration had screwed up a public statement that badly, they would justifiably be fired for incompetence.

But this is far worse. Trump isn't just the purpose who's supposed to be delivering the speech. He's the guy who's supposed to be making decisions and setting policies. Yet we just saw that he isn't even capable of reading the policy off a teleprompter.

So who's in charge if Trump can't do the job? Is Pence calling the shots behind the scenes? Do they treat Trump like Henry Blake and have Radar put papers in front of him and tell him to sign them?

Although that's an unfair comparison to Henry Blake. He was a poor leader but a competent doctor. Trump was a failure as a businessman before becoming a failure as a President.
Not even the hardest-core MAGAts can still dismiss this pandemic as a Democratic hoax, so it seems they will finally experience the impact of Trump's incompetence while it's on full display. And while this administration was able to buy off farmers hurt by tariffs, they'll never be able to compensate the millions of businesses and workers hurt by the pandemic. They're gonna wear this one.
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Old 03-12-2020, 02:51 PM
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Here's another: As of today, CDC reported it had tested just over 11,000 specimens for the virus so far. Meanwhile, South Korea is testing nearly 20,000 patients *per day*.

https://www.nbcnews.com/health/healt...sting-n1157036
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Old 03-12-2020, 03:15 PM
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From a couple of days ago:

Feds to immigration courts: remove coronavirus info posters - Immigration court staff nationwide were ordered by the Trump administration to take down all coronavirus posters from courtrooms and waiting areas.

Because we can't have healthy immigrants and refugees, can we?
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Old 03-12-2020, 03:38 PM
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• The administration deactivated the White House pandemic task force that President Obama had put in place to proactively deal with upcoming new diseases in the wake of H1-N1 and Ebola epidemics. Oops.
Additionally, Trump's current budget includes a 16% cut to CDC. Altho, it has not been passed yet. That is not likely to help our readiness.
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Old 03-12-2020, 03:54 PM
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Holy smokes, great list. Thank you!
Most welcome. I'm super pissed about all this.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RioRico View Post
From a couple of days ago:

Feds to immigration courts: remove coronavirus info posters - Immigration court staff nationwide were ordered by the Trump administration to take down all coronavirus posters from courtrooms and waiting areas.

Because we can't have healthy immigrants and refugees, can we?
The depths of the Trump Cabal's depravity and cruelty knows no bottom.
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Old 03-12-2020, 04:32 PM
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I just got an email from my (Republican) congressman that claimed that he had voted in 2018 to raise the CDC appropriation. Maybe he even did, but it didn't go through, did it.

My daughter who was chief copy editor for the NY office of Nature tells me that, even after considerable effort, they never succeeded in finding a vaccine against SARS. Covid-19 is in the same family as SARS. So I am not holding my breath on getting a vaccine in a year, let alone a month.

Don't forget muzzling the CDC by requiring all announcements to be cleared by Pence.
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Old 03-12-2020, 04:47 PM
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Not even the hardest-core MAGAts can still dismiss this pandemic as a Democratic hoax...
Don't be so sure:

87% of Republicans approve of Trump's handling of coronavirus.

6 in 10 Republicans express low levels of concern.
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Old 03-12-2020, 05:00 PM
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Completely empty stands at NASCAR events over at least the next couple of weeks might put a dent in that.
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Old 03-12-2020, 05:01 PM
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Let's see what happens when plants start closing and relatives start dying.

(God that sounds ghoulish. Shit in my world is coming apart left and right, and here I sound like I'm rooting for the worst to happen. Fucking Trump.)
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Old 03-13-2020, 03:48 AM
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The ban on European travel is regarded as too-late and too-stupid, but one news site made a bizarre charge: The travel ban is carefully worded to allow travel to the U.K. and certain countries in Eastern Europe: countries where the Trump Organization has hotels or golf clubs!

To imagine even this President stooping so low as to worry about his resort income in the midst of this crisis seems far-fetched. But this President is bizarrely petty.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aspenglow View Post
• The administration currently plans to charge for both test kits and any vaccine that is developed. Can you think of a single other epidemic where individual citizens were charged for these things? Hint: You can’t, because no administration has ever allowed that to happen. Disgusting.
There, there. We need our federal agencies to make profits. How else can we afford more tax cuts for the rich?
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Old 03-13-2020, 07:15 AM
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Septimus, not far fetched at all. This is the guy that raises the prices on his hotel rooms when he drags his entourage to them.
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Old 03-13-2020, 08:48 AM
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The House passed a bill that provides for:
- free coronavirus testing
- paid emergency medical leave
- extended unemployment insurance
- food assistance
- help for health care workers.

The Senate is about to go on recess until March 23. According to McConnell ally Lamar Alexander, "The Senate will act when we come back and we have a clearer idea of what extra steps we need to take." Not like there's any urgency or anything.
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Old 03-13-2020, 09:22 AM
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<snip>

There, there. We need our federal agencies to make profits. How else can we afford more tax cuts for the rich?
I must have missed it. When did they start giving a rat's patootie about what we can afford?

(I do know you're teasing. )
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Old 03-13-2020, 09:32 AM
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The cruelty is the point.

https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/ar...-point/572104/
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Old 03-13-2020, 11:38 AM
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I think this may be the one thing that finally turns a few of Trump's less nuttier supporters against him.

As long as the economy was humming along at a nice clip, they could handwave away a lot of his antics and corruption. The Ukraine stuff and all the malfeasance revealed during the impeachment investigation? Just a witchhunt by Democrats as far they're concerned. Putting kids in cages? A lot of his supporters are all for these sorts of hardline tactics, so that was never really going to hurt him politically.

But when they see loved ones starting to get sick, and are continuing to be fed bucketful after bucketful of obvious lies, that could cause them to think, "You know what? Maybe this guy really is full of shit."

Last edited by joebuck20; 03-13-2020 at 11:39 AM.
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Old 03-13-2020, 11:52 AM
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The House passed a bill that provides for:
- free coronavirus testing
- paid emergency medical leave
- extended unemployment insurance
- food assistance
- help for health care workers.

The Senate is about to go on recess until March 23. According to McConnell ally Lamar Alexander, "The Senate will act when we come back and we have a clearer idea of what extra steps we need to take." Not like there's any urgency or anything.
Just when you think the GOP can't possibly be any worse...

But beyond the heartlessness of it all, I think they're setting themselves up to be swept out of congress if this thing gets worse, and all signs are that it will.
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Old 03-13-2020, 12:29 PM
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According to a Politico writer (as reported by Business Insider), Trump has been resistant to testing in part because he wants an artificially low count:

https://www.businessinsider.com/coro...-report-2020-3

I'm careful to put too much stock in reports based on anonymous sources, but this story is plausible. It also explains why much of the federal workforce continues to work despite the growing risks of corona. He knows sending them home would shake and rattle markets even further.
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Old 03-13-2020, 12:36 PM
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Completely empty stands at NASCAR events over at least the next couple of weeks might put a dent in that.
The stands have been mostly empty for years now; no one would notice any difference. Besides, they just suspended the season.
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Old 03-13-2020, 12:39 PM
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According to a Politico writer (as reported by Business Insider), Trump has been resistant to testing in part because he wants an artificially low count:

https://www.businessinsider.com/coro...-report-2020-3

I'm careful to put too much stock in reports based on anonymous sources, but this story is plausible.
It's patently obvious that is what is happening: none diagnosed=none exist.
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Old 03-13-2020, 01:20 PM
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I think this may be the one thing that finally turns a few of Trump's less nuttier supporters against him.

As long as the economy was humming along at a nice clip, they could handwave away a lot of his antics and corruption. The Ukraine stuff and all the malfeasance revealed during the impeachment investigation? Just a witchhunt by Democrats as far they're concerned. Putting kids in cages? A lot of his supporters are all for these sorts of hardline tactics, so that was never really going to hurt him politically.

But when they see loved ones starting to get sick, and are continuing to be fed bucketful after bucketful of obvious lies, that could cause them to think, "You know what? Maybe this guy really is full of shit."
If you believe the lies then you're not going to work on the assumption that they're lies. If you believe that there's only 2000 cases in coronavirus and your mom dies of it, you'll assume it's a fluke. If you assume that's a lie and maybe we have closer to 30,000 cases and your mom dies, you'll be angry that the administration is lying.
However, in either case, if the stock market is even close to recovering, say DJ at 28,000ish, people aren't going to think about it. Or worse, Trump will spin it into a success for himself. He didn't ruin it, he fixed it. Also, keep in mind, as long as it's over 20,000, he'll still take responsibility for it going up while he's been in office.
  #29  
Old 03-13-2020, 01:28 PM
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From the Washington Post:

I ran the White House pandemic office. Trump closed it.

Quote:
It’s unclear whether the decision to disband the directorate, which was made in May 2018, after John Bolton became national security adviser, was a tactical move to downgrade the issue or whether it was part of the White House’s interest in simplifying and shrinking the National Security Council staff. Either way, it left an unclear structure and strategy for coordinating pandemic preparedness and response. Experts outside government and on Capitol Hill called for the office’s reinstatement at the time.

Its absence now is all too evident. In his remarks Wednesday night, the president talked about travel bans and the resilience of the U.S. economy but made little specific mention of the public health crisis unfolding across America — exactly the kind of detail a dedicated NSC pandemics infrastructure would have pushed to address. A directorate within the White House would have been responsible for coordinating the efforts of multiple federal agencies to make sure the government was backstopping testing capacity, devising approaches to manufacture and avoid shortages of personal protective equipment, strengthening U.S. lab capacity to process covid-19 tests, and expanding the health-care workforce.

The office would galvanize resources to coordinate a robust and seamless domestic and global response. It would identify needs among state and local officials, and advise and facilitate regular, focused communication from federal health and scientific experts to provide states and the public with fact-based tools to minimize the virus’s spread. The White House is uniquely positioned to take into account broader U.S. and global security considerations associated with health emergencies, including their impact on deployed citizens, troops and regional economies, as well as peace and stability. A White House office would have been able to elevate urgent issues fast, so they didn’t linger or devolve to inaction, as with coronavirus testing in the United States. It would be in charge of sharing information and coordinating our public health and humanitarian response with partners and allies.
  #30  
Old 03-14-2020, 03:43 PM
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Beside blaming Obama for COVID, can this POTUS also blame his predecessor for the MidEast plague of locusts?
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