How many deaths this man is arguably responsible (by his continued delays & refusals to do anything constructive or useful for people).
So below the usual choices of article, videos you may have overlooked or not known about linked in -- first three linked in which can inform you about aspects of the pandemic and why we have a federal gov't which far from working to contain the virus and help people, is assaulting those institutions we have which can help and forcing people where it can back into dangerous working conditions
A video with Obama from 2014 explaining why he set up units to deal with a coming pandemic, experts all at the ready - all quickly disbanded and fired by Trump when he came in: There is one of these godawful commercials first (and ironically selling just the sort of thing that is wrecking the environment) but then in 2014 here is Obama predicting this coming pandemic and putting in place the structures to deal with it. He could never get adequate funding:
This from the New Yorker showing that the average well-to-do American in Greenwich, Connecticut is for Trump; Evan Osnos. It's not just the extremes of wealth and poverty (and no education), rigid evangelical hatred of the modern world, frantic racism, but the kind of voter who used to vote for Prescott Bush.
Shorter: Powerful people prefer mass death to adopting the social policies of civilized nations by Tim Marchand. Far fewer people would be impoverished for a long time to come were there decent social programs and helps from the gov't they pay for for them. In effect, the US gov't is barbaric -- this quite apart from its insane militaristic spending and ventures.
Now excerpts from longer political, philosophical articles on the general conditions we are facing:
Yesterday Nurses in front of the White House honoring 88 who died -- because of lack of PPE equipment
1) George Packer from the Atlantic argues: We are living in a failed state: We are living in a failed state. From the Atlantic. This Pandemic has made this failed state visible: no one or group of people in power to do it to work to contain and then mitigate this virus effectively and at the same time prevent the average person from falling into an abysmal of poverty across the US. We know how to do it; we see it being done in various European societies.
When the virus came here, it found a country with serious underlying conditions, and it exploited them ruthlessly. Chronic ills—a corrupt political class, a sclerotic bureaucracy, a heartless economy, a divided and distracted public—had gone untreated for years. We had learned to live, uncomfortably, with the symptoms. It took the scale and intimacy of a pandemic to expose their severity—to shock Americans with the recognition that we are in the high-risk category.
The crisis demanded a response that was swift, rational, and collective. The United States reacted instead like Pakistan or Belarus—like a country with shoddy infrastructure and a dysfunctional government whose leaders were too corrupt or stupid to head off mass suffering. The administration squandered two irretrievable months to prepare. From the president came willful blindness, scapegoating, boasts, and lies. From his mouthpieces, conspiracy theories and miracle cures. A few senators and corporate executives acted quickly—not to prevent the coming disaster, but to profit from it. When a government doctor tried to warn the public of the danger, the White House took the mic and politicized the message.
Every morning in the endless month of March, Americans woke up to find themselves citizens of a failed state. With no national plan—no coherent instructions at all—families, schools, and offices were left to decide on their own whether to shut down and take shelter. When test kits, masks, gowns, and ventilators were found to be in desperately short supply, governors pleaded for them from the White House, which stalled, then called on private enterprise, which couldn’t deliver. States and cities were forced into bidding wars that left them prey to price gouging and corporate profiteering. Civilians took out their sewing machines to try to keep ill-equipped hospital workers healthy and their patients alive. Russia, Taiwan, and the United Nations sent humanitarian aid to the world’s richest power—a beggar nation in utter chaos.
Donald Trump saw the crisis almost entirely in personal and political terms. Fearing for his reelection, he declared the coronavirus pandemic a war, and himself a wartime president. But the leader he brings to mind is Marshal Philippe Pétain, the French general who, in 1940, signed an armistice with Germany after its rout of French defenses, then formed the pro-Nazi Vichy regime. Like Pétain, Trump collaborated with the invader and abandoned his country to a prolonged disaster. And, like France in 1940, America in 2020 has stunned itself with a collapse that’s larger and deeper than one miserable leader. Some future autopsy of the pandemic might be called Strange Defeat, after the historian and Resistance fighter Marc Bloch’s contemporaneous study of the fall of France. Despite countless examples around the U.S. of individual courage and sacrifice, the failure is national. And it should force a question that most Americans have never had to ask: Do we trust our leaders and one another enough to summon a collective response to a mortal threat? Are we still capable of self-government?
On The second crisis, in 2008, intensified it. At the top, the financial crash could almost be considered a success. Congress passed a bipartisan bailout bill that saved the financial system. Outgoing Bush-administration officials cooperated with incoming Obama administration officials. The experts at the Federal Reserve and the Treasury Department used monetary and fiscal policy to prevent a second Great Depression. Leading bankers were shamed but not prosecuted; most of them kept their fortunes and some their jobs. Before long they were back in business. A Wall Street trader told me that the financial crisis had been a “speed bump.”
..... Trump came to power as the repudiation of the Republican establishment. But the conservative political class and the new leader soon reached an understanding. Whatever their differences on issues like trade and immigration, they shared a basic goal: to strip-mine public assets for the benefit of private interests. Republican politicians and donors who wanted government to do as little as possible for the common good could live happily with a regime that barely knew how to govern at all, and they made themselves Trump’s footmen.
Like a wanton boy throwing matches in a parched field, Trump began to immolate what was left of national civic life. He never even pretended to be president of the whole country, but pitted us against one another along lines of race, sex, religion, citizenship, education, region, and—every day of his presidency—political party. His main tool of governance was to lie. A third of the country locked itself in a hall of mirrors that it believed to be reality; a third drove itself mad with the effort to hold on to the idea of knowable truth; and a third gave up even trying.
If you click below, you will get the whole article (with a short history of slavery and racist policies excluding black people
from any social programs for housing and education)
2) Chomsky gives the larger perspective, the longer view, the more thorough analysis: he says everyone must vote for Biden as a first small step to repairing the failed state. He would have preferred Sanders or any number of the original candidates for the democratic party, but those running this organization were not having any one but a deeply conservative democrat
Last: Edward Gorey: Quarantined for self-protection. What I've noticed reading each day the last few days this week:
-- One of Trump's cronies took over the Post Office; apparently the president can do this; it will be gradually destroyed, turned into some kind of private enterprise. I worry now about my checks getting to the people I pay; will I be forced to pay online by credit cards? 1916 wasn't it the Post Office was fought over. It's a central institution like the DMV (driving). Democrats did nothing, did not make an outcry as far as I can see; the only way Trump can be defeated is if mailing in ballots is allowed. It's said that Biden's videos from his basement are not very good -- the DNC which put him in place is said to be worried. Right. The Wash Post reported on how Trump squashed the CDC's plan for testing and tracing which would have saved lives; he stopped Fauci from testifying. They actually had a plan on how to do it and how to open the economy while preventing as much sickness and death as possible. Trump overturned Flynn's conviction, or just ignored it. Also tightening grip to stop any general statistics from federal agencies. The Justice Department is fighting in the Supreme Court to destroy what's left of Affordable Care, millions are now w/o health care, to make the whole thing unconstitutional on the grounds that the individual mandate was abolished (irrationally, this small attack is now being used for a frontal one). Many people are dying at home -- of other things beyond Covid10 -- rather than incur lifelong debt. People now fear the hospitals are unsafe because the workers haven't anywhere near sufficient personal protection gear. And Betsy DeVos has reversed the Education department's policy on rape and sexual assault, by making a law or rule that the accuser must come forth, put herself in public and there must be a hearing, a trial; this will be enough to stop the few women who have protested.
So that's just the past week and one half --
Posted by Miss Drake