William Saletan at Slate published an important piece yesterday evening on Trump’s catastrophic handling of the pandemic. I posted a link in the morning coronavirus thread, but it deserves its own post, IMO. It’s not that there’s any new information in the article. It’s that Saletan puts it all together — in chronological order and in one place — with tons of links to publicly available statements from Trump and others as the crisis unfolded. The effect is absolutely devastating.
After Biden picks a not-Warren as VP, I wish Bloomberg would rifle through his sofa cushions and come up with the spare change he’d need to pay every fence-sitting voter in America $100 to read the Saletan piece. It’s entitled, “The Trump Pandemic: A blow-by-blow account of how the president killed thousands of Americans.” Here’s the conclusion:
It’s hard to believe a president could be this callous and corrupt. It’s hard to believe one person could get so many things wrong or do so much damage. But that’s what happened. Trump knew we weren’t ready for a pandemic, but he didn’t prepare. He knew China was hiding the extent of the crisis, but he joined in the cover-up. He knew the virus was spreading in the United States, but he said it was vanishing. He knew we wouldn’t find it without more tests, but he said we didn’t need them. He delayed mitigation. He derided masks. He tried to silence anyone who told the truth. And in the face of multiple warnings, he pushed the country back open, reigniting the spread of the disease.
Now Trump asks us to reelect him. “We had the greatest economy in the history of the world,” he told Fox News on Wednesday. “Then we got hit with the plague from China.” But now, he promised, “We’re building it again.” In Trump’s story, the virus is a foreign intrusion, an unpleasant interlude, a stroke of bad luck. But when you stand back and look at the full extent of his role in the catastrophe, it’s amazing how lucky we were. For three years, we survived the most ruthless, reckless, dishonest president in American history. Then our luck ran out.
The whole thing is well worth a read and worthy of bookmarking for future reference, IMO. I’ve never been a huge Saletan fan; he can be concern trolly on certain issues, most notably abortion. But this article was impressive. Open thread.