The greatest coronavirus risk is in the White House

Per Reuters “Breakingviews – Donald Trump is rising risk factor in virus battle” this morning before the additional precipitous stock market decline “Donald Trump is becoming a growing risk factor in the virus battle. The U.S. president’s address to the nation on Wednesday night sparked more market panic. A $50 billion pledge for small businesses hit by Covid-19 is good, but his speech lacked public-health remedies, was full of mixed messages and focused on a Europe travel ban. He’s missing both diagnosis and cure. Trump’s primetime speech followed his administration’s trend of inadequate and confusing responses since coronavirus cases started rising in the United States.” A link to the full editorial is below.

The Washington Post echoed these remarks in an opinion piece called “Trumps oval office failure.” A link to the editorial is also below.

About three years ago, after the absolutely disastrous travel ban that was implemented without vetting, advance communication or planning was pulled after two days, conservative pundit David Brooks gave us a clarion call. He said the Trump White House is “equal parts chaos and incompetence.” Sadly, per the book by Michael Lewis called “The Fifth Risk,” the White House started out that way by firing the entire transition team, trashing their research of candidates, leaving positions unfilled, not attending scheduled briefings of how the many government departments work.

Even after filling many jobs, this White House has the highest turnover rate of any of the previous ones, the boss is walking powder keg who people try to keep from blowing up and who has a disdain for study and, as a result, push back on poor decisions is not occurring as it was when a few capable people were there. Plus, there is no consistent planning or communication messaging. To say it is willy-nilly, would not be an overstatement.

So, along comes a real crisis. Not one that is on a distant shore, but one that is here. We need a leader who is calming and we know will shoot straight with us. The president does neither in calmer times, so it is not a surprise he is not so doing in a crisis. I have shared with our Senators for many months the president is a national security risk and a threat to our democracy, our country and our planet. I wish I was off base in my feelings, which are not my own.

If we want stabilization and planning, the best the president can do is let some one else handle it. He needs to step back and let someone who is first and foremost trying to solve the problem, solve it and be the face to America. What I see is a president whose first mission is protecting his own brand, then second helping people. That cannot be the priorities of the US president.

One of my wife’s friends, who is a huge Trump supporter, made the comment to her “at least we have the right person in the White House.” That statement could not be further from the truth.

8 thoughts on “The greatest coronavirus risk is in the White House

  1. Note to Readers: Dr. Anthony Fauci directlly contradicted the White House on the availability of screenings to Congress. Maybe I am just noticing it more, but the news networks are doing a lot of Q/A’s to make up for the inconsistency of information. Sadly, many folks are not looking to the White House for answers.

  2. If ever there was a time for both the media and the others in the administration to step up to the plate, it is now, for we most assuredly cannot trust a single word that comes from the ‘man’ in the Oval Office. David said, and I’m inclined to agree, that this may well be Trump’s Waterloo. It certainly should be, for he has bungled this one from the starting line. Good post, Keith.

    • Jill, there have been so many Waterloos that have been rationalized and normalized. Yet, the symptoms of the “illness that consumes Trump” traces back to the most fragile of egos. The narcissism, the lying, the lack of accountability, the taking credit for all things good, the bullying, the corruption, the blaming….Jill, I noticed you put “man” in parenthesis. To me, a man must be accountable (women, too), so I refer to him as the “person in the White House” and as a “person in a leadership position.” It saddens me and disappoints me that elected GOP officials are too scared to criticize this person. Keith

      • This is true … and he slithers like a snake out of the trouble every time. I’m not so sure he can this time, though. Yes, I always put ‘man’ in parentheses when referring to him, to indicate that I am using the term loosely, for in my book he is not a man. Your way works, too, though I’m not sure I even consider him a person at this stage of the game.

      • Well said. David Brooks stated he is angered by this president’s misleading and miscommunication about the coronavirus.

  3. Note to Readers: Conservative pundit David Brooks used the word “anger” to define how he feels about the purposefully misleading and incompetent handling the coronavirus by the person in the White House. Even today, he said the president used propaganda rather than shoot straight with people. Anger. That is impactful and deserved.

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