Doug's Darkworld

War, Science, and Philosophy in a Fractured World.

AMERICA, TRUMP, AND CORONAVIRUS … THIS IS NOT GOING TO END WELL

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Looks like Coronavirus is on its way to America, according to the CDC. Pondering this eventuality, I realize America in many ways is completely unprepared for a pandemic. Here are ten ways America is punching itself in the face when it comes to effectively responding to Coronavirus:

  1. Lack of access to health care. In the rest of the developed world, people that think they might have or might have been exposed to the Coronavirus have every incentive to seek health care immediately. Tens of millions of Americans have no access to health care except through emergency rooms, and even then it’s iffy. So simply not having access, and then fear of the costs incurred, will keep people from seeking treatment until it’s too late, or never. Works for all infectious diseases actually, why Americans want to share their public places with untreated sick people is a mystery to me.
  2. Demonizing law-abiding undocumented people. Guess what, the anti-immigrant hysteria Trump has engendered makes it far less likely that undocumented people will seek medical treatment. Treating law abiding undocumented people as criminal undesirables makes the illegal immigration problem much worse. Basically Trumo has turned undocumented people into a huge pool of potential Coronavirus spreaders.
  3. Sick leave policies. American companies have sick leave policies that are draconian compared to the rest of the civilized world, workers are often forced to work when sick, either by their management or they can’t afford unpaid sick leave. Not exactly conducive to fighting an epidemic.
  4. Codicil, businesses won’t want to close. Similar to number three, American corporations are going to be loathe to close factories and such, and they have the political pull to strongly resist such calls.
  5. Snake oil salesmen, legitimised! Not only is the so called ‘alternative medicine’ industry thriving in America, it’s made great strides in legitimizing itself. Sorry, snake oil is snake oil, drinking water (homeopathy) and sticking oneself with needles (acupuncture) won’t cure or treat Coronavirus. People will try though.
  6. Faith based medical deniers. Adults not seeking medical treatment is bad enough, but there are states where parents can legally deny their children medical treatment. And plenty of snake oil salesmen here too, Jim Bakker is already selling fake cures. Millions of Americans are likely to depend on God and prayers to fight Coronavirus. Didn’t work to fight the Black Death, won’t work now,
  7. Anti-vaxxers. Yes, the people who believe hand washing eliminated smallpox aren’t going to be cooperative in this epidemic. Even if a vaccine is developed in time, this is another huge pool of people who will avoid it. Hell, if anything they will have Coronavirus parties to deliberately expose their kids.
  8. Media as infotainment. The mainstream media in the USA is totally beholden to corporate  and political interests. These interests are going to protect themselves at all costs, public welfare be damned.
  9. No accountability. Washington is a bizarre city where no matter how badly people screw up, no one is accountable. The invasion of Iraq is the perfect example. An invasion that was supposed to prevent a WMD attack on the US, trigger a democratic revolution in the Middle East, and cost next to nothing in lives and treasure. Instead it proved to be a disaster of epic proportions … and the WMD threat turned out to be non-existent. Yet the architects of this catastrophe are still respected pundits and politicians. When a nation’s leaders aren’t accountable for failure, they have no incentive to not fail. Nor can they learn from their mistakes.
  10. Americans just don’t give a damn about the common good. Literally, a huge percentage of Americans see everything as a partisan battleground, and the losers are such because they subscribe to the wrong ideology. Horace Greely on steroids. Not a good mindset for dealing with a pandemic. Coronavirus is as likely to tear us apart as it is to unite us.

My first draft of this list was much simpler. 1. Trump is president. 2. Trump is president. Etc. Mr Trump and much of his base believe in simplistic solutions to complex problems. History has shown quite clearly the folly of this sort of thinking, if simple black and white solutions worked, Earth would be a paradise. There’s every reason to believe the Trump administration’s response to Coronavirus will be chaotic to incompetant. Hell, the man fired the national pandemic response team, hasn’t replaced them. And of writing this, hasn’t even appointed someone to coordinate America’s response to Coronavirus.

This is the first real domestic crisis Trump has faced, second if we count the hurricane that smashed Puerto Rico. Yeah, his response to that was less than stellar. I suspect he will spend his time trying to prop the stock market up and controlling the narrative. Alas, sharpies and lies aren’t going to cut it here Mr. Trump. I hope the virus is contained and we don’t have to deal with it in the US. That’s pretty unlikely at this point. If Coronavirus does hit us big time, I hope I’m wrong about Trump and this crisis brings him out as a national leader leading the country and all Americans through difficult times.

A man can dream. Please share.

Copyright © 2020 Doug Stych. All rights reserved.

(Image: The Triumph of Death.  Credit: Pieter Bruegel the Elder  (1526/1530–1569) As the artist has been dead for centuries. The image is Public Domain under US and other copyright law.)

Written by unitedcats

February 25, 2020 at 7:14 pm

One Response

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  1. […] Number three abortive Covid-19 post. I notice it’s not making a huge amount of news, I think some attempt is being made to avoid panic. A good thing, panic rarely helps. As the CDC says, keep calm and wash your hands. At this point, still thinking Covid-19 is the cold from hell. The 1918 flu of our time. 40-70% of the world’s population will catch it, millions will die. The US will be particularly hard hit because of the dismal state of our public health care system, among other factors I previously blogged about. […]


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