Sunday, March 15, 2020

Trump gets a "D" for his Covid-19 response

Reader Lucas Machias observed that Republicans and Democrats have widely varying views of how severe Covid-19 is with twice as many Republicans thinking the severity has been "over-blown".

That probably due to conservatives' jaunticed view of the mainstream news media and what they see as a history of twisting the news to make Trump look bad. They look at the medias' belated enthusiasm for reporting on Covid-19 and attributed it to (what they see as) their desire to torpedo Trump at any cost.

In my opinion Trump merits a solid "D" for the government's response-to-date.

In spite of Trump not wanting to own it, he is still the Chief Executive. Even if the CDC was protecting their turf (a classic Deep State move), Trump is still their boss.

Sorry folks, when you are talking about my life and the lives of those I love, there is no grading-on-a-curve.

North Korea sets the bar for getting an "F". They executed the first patient. That makes it tough to get histories and establish perimeters.

China essentially arrested the first doctors that tried to blow the whistle. They get an "F+".

Everybody else, except the South Koreans, gets a "D".

South Korea gets a "C".

Republicans are pissed about Covid-19 because it tanked the stock market and that reduced Trump's chances of being re-elected. That ship sailed and is not coming back before the election.

One point that is hugely in Trump's favor is that he is not afraid to contradict himself. That is, he seems almost immune to the sunk-cost-trap. When he gets better information, he runs with it, even when it makes him look foolish.

In a very dynamic situation, like this Covid-19 appears to be, that is an asset. What was accepted as fact last week is now known to be very wrong. Undoubtedly, much of what we think is fact this week will be proven wrong. The half-life of a Covid-19 "fact" is about ten days.

In general, the American electorate has shown a strong preference to not change horses in the middle of the stream as long as that horse appears to be moving decisively. Trump is a quick learner. I expect him to have a "C" by next Saturday.

Just to be a rabble-rouser, what happens if both Biden and Sanders get it and die? Tulsi is still the only other Dem officially still in the race.

---Edited to add---
Another major difference between Democrats and Republicans is that urban people are more likely to be Democrats. As a practical matter, I have certain freedoms living in Eaton Rapids Township (population density 100/square mile) that somebody living in the Bronx (population density 34,000/square mile) cannot exercise.

The behaviors of the person living in the Bronx must be coordinated with the behaviors of far more people than for many of us living in fly-over country. The news media, for good or ill, is one of the major organs that act as the metronomes coordinating those behaviors.


  1. Trump gets better than a "D" for his response. Declaring a National Emergency. He is setting up drive-thru testing at Walmart parking lots. Involving Google to find solutions, using the big drug companies to make test kits, involving CVS, Walmart, Walgreens, and others. This is the first time since World War II that the government is actually DOING anything that involves the public directly rather than just telling us what to do.And he is changing regulations for visitors to nursing homes and hospitals, and other regulations for doctors and hospitals. And you can bet that if more changes need to be made, Trump will not hesitate to change them. Wait and give out grades after this is all over.


    1. more actions coming on the distribution front:

    2. I WANT Trump to be successful.

      One way to help Trump, and the government, be successful is to not give social promotions or to grade on "potential".

      Results count. Not ideological purity. Not intentions. Results.

      If I/we cut Trump slack, then everybody in .gov will be cut slack. He has broad shoulders. He can take it.

    3. I agree with what you say but the key words in my response were "Wait and give out grades after this is all over".
      On another subject I have long enjoyed your blog, ESPECIALLY the highly educational and informative fiction.

  2. If what I hear turns out to be correct, I am anticipating a shut-down nationwide. I have been expecting this to happen once exponential growth is confirmed from the "Infected" and "Death" numbers (which would indicate that 'social distancing' hasn't been working). I don't think Americans are as easily deterred from their habits and mobility as other nations are. Institutions and now businesses have been steadily announcing closures in the meantime, through the weekend and up through tonight. We shall see.

  3. I expect the winnowing of the urban population to overcome whatever failures of the Trump administration and the economy and produce Four More Years. That, and the abject failure of the Democrat party to not be crazy.

    1. The bartender from the Bronx is busy braying that the reason she stopped campaigning for the communist is that he accepted an endorsement from a radio personality who is not all-in on LGBTLMNOQ rights.

      That is, he failed her arbitrary, ideology-purity-test.

      Meanwhile, her constituents (at 34,000 per square mile) are wondering how they are going to execute social distancing and are coming to the realization that she lives in a fantasy land.

      "Abject failure of crazy". That captures most of the Democratic party that is newsworthy.

  4. A solid "D"? I am thinking a resounding F. 

    This virus was not a surprise. He should have been preparing before it got here, instead, he was actively misleading the public about what was coming.

    When he was forced to respond, he wanted to contain sick people on that cruise ship so the virus 'numbers' related to his reelection would look better. 

    That coronavirus speech from the Oval Office on TV, last week, was bungled so bad, it defies common sense. How do you get something like that so wrong?

    This is life and death incompetence. If it were a movie, you would have to sink to the level of a cartoon villain to find something as stupid.


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