After yesterday’s White House presser, several high-profile reporters remarked that for the first time Trump was scared. He finally acknowledged that the best case scenario for the United States is between 100,000 and 240,000 fatalities from the virus, referring to the outbreak as a “plague” and saying the next two weeks will be really bad. He did his usual blustering, boasting and blaming, but his overall demeanor seemed different. He seemed to fully grasp what’s coming and knows he will be blamed for some of it. This was in striking contrast to his determined claim just last week that we would be back to normal by Easter.
To combat the criticism that Trump wasted at least eight weeks calling the coronavirus a hoax and doing nothing to prepare, Trumpublicans were absurdly claiming that the impeachment trial was at fault, distracting Trump and his regime from the danger coming from China. If you hear anyone spreading this nonsense, be sure to mention that during the same period Trump held nine rallies and golfed at least six times. Surely a stable genius can multitask!
In a tweet yesterday, Barack Obama made a subtle dig at Trump’s failure to respond while urging us to heed the warnings about coronavirus and climate change, referencing a story in the LA Times about fuel economy standards weakened by Trump:
We’ve seen all too terribly the consequences of those who denied warnings of a pandemic. We can’t afford any more consequences of climate denial. All of us, especially young people, have to demand better of our government at every level and vote this fall. https://www.latimes.com/politics/story/2020-03-31/trump-rolls-back-fuel-economy-standards
On the local front, New York City now has over 40,000 confirmed cases and the death toll was over 930–almost surely exceeding 1,000 by the time you read this–but hundreds of nurses and doctors from around the country are arriving at NYC hospitals to help with the tsunami of cases that will continue to grow and hopefully peak sometime in the next two weeks.
Dutchess County has also been seeing a steady rise in Covid-19 cases, closing in on 400 with three deaths thus far, the majority centered around Poughkeepsie. The County has produced a very simple and informative coronavirus dashboard with daily updates and maps that you can find here:
It seems likely that the CDC will urge all Americans to wear a mask while running essential errands, especially in places where it’s difficult to stay 6-feet away from others. Since medical masks are in such dire shortage at the moment, it’s likely we will have to make or re-purpose our own. The New York Times published a useful guide to this yesterday that you can find here:
Nobody is safe and nobody is protected from Covid-19 (except perhaps those who’ve already had it and recovered). The CDC now says that at least a quarter of the people infected with coronavirus have no symptoms and don’t know they have it. Most of the people who get it will be okay. But one in five will need to go to the hospital, one in 20 will need to be in the ICU, and one in fifty will die. Absolutely everyone should take this outbreak seriously.
Keep resisting Trump and keep working to “vote his ass out of office.”