There’s a really stupid discussion happening on Twitter and in political analysis about whether Biden really did inherit a vaccine mess from Trump. Here’s the ultimate refutation from TPM, which points out that Trump’s vaccine distribution plan was to basically mail it to the states and let them figure it out. Not to mention that he and his group of dopes didn’t order enough vaccine.
As usual, the wankers who think the obvious fact of Trump’s gross COVID incompetence needs a re-think can only make an argument if they ignore the whole picture. Let’s go beyond the question of what a merely competent response from Trump would have looked like. What if we had decided that we were really going to slay the virus and show the world what we can do? What would that have looked like?
Let’s start with technology:
This is the Abbott BinaxNow home COVID test, made right here in the US of A. Look, it comes with an app! It’s a 15-minute test that requires a gentle nasal swabbing. What if a rock-star President had invoked the Defense Production Act, found some other manufacturers who would work with Abbott, and cranked out millions of these things? Just imagine if, last Fall, we a COVID test was easier to get and use than a home pregnancy test.
This is a KF-94 mask, the Korean standard. The shape is better than the more popular KN95s (better face coverage, in my opinion), the ear straps are adjustable for a better fit, and, most importantly, they come in individual sealed flat envelopes suitable for mailing that makes them easy to store. What if our imaginary rock-star President had something similar to this produced in massive quantities and mailed regularly to every residential mailbox in the country? Call it the USA-94 and put a god damned flag on it.
Of course, this would all be coupled with smart and forward-thinking policies, like subsidies for every business that had to close due to COVID, hazard pay and priority testing for essential employees, and a host of other things that I’m sure we can imagine.
The notion that what could have happened if Trump weren’t President was a merely competent response shows a failure to imagine what we could have done if we had great leadership. Of course, a press that’s committed to status quo ante at best can’t even begin to talk about this kind of stuff, so we’re left with weak defenses of a pathetic, careless almost non-response to the biggest worldwide challenge of the last hundred years.