A Year Of Wild Pitches And Curve Balls

Well, Tony Fauci was able to get back into the game yesterday. After being benched by the Trump Administration, the good doctor was invited by the Washington Nationals to throw out the first pitch at their home opener yesterday.

Alas, Fauci’s pitch went more to first base than home plate, a wild pitch that I’m sure won’t be lost on POTUS and his gaggle of infectious disease experts.

Here’s fromYahoo Sports:

The most famous person on the field before Thursday opening night game between the New York Yankees and Washington Nationals wasn’t Aaron Judge, Max Scherzer or Gerrit Cole. It was Dr. Anthony Fauci, the infectious disease expert who has been so prominent in America’s response to the coronavirus.
During his time in the public eye, Fauci has made no secret of his baseball fandom, particularly his fandom of the Washington Nationals. So Fauci was picked by the Nats to throw out the first pitch of the delayed 2020 season — and he probably wants a do-over.
Fauci took the field in a Nats, jersey and cap. He had a mask covering his face, of course. He stretched out his arm a bit and then uncorked a wild first pitch. Probably a good thing there were no fans there to see it.

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Of course Fauci’s wild pitch pales by comparison to the curve balls Trump has been hurling since the virus pandemic season opened in this country in February.

So if you consider that Trump has been and is the manager of this country’s response to the crisis, then I think you have to concede that in worldwide standings he has led us to first place in terms of cases and deaths. Sad.

Maybe even with all his shortcomings as a hurler it’s time to call Dr. Fauci in from the bullpen.

 

No Mask. No Service. It’s Simple

No mask, no service. It’s simple.

Those were the words Colorado Gov. Jared Polis used yesterday when he announced that people throughout the state are now required to wear a face mask when in indoor public spaces.

Good for Polis.

And good for Colorado

Here’s from The Colorado Sun:

Gov. Jared Polis on Thursday, facing pressure from the medical community and Democratic state lawmakers, issued a statewide mandate requiring Coloradans to wear a mask when in indoor public spaces.

The mask order takes effect on Friday and lasts through at least Aug. 15. It applies to anyone older than age 10.

Masks must also be worn by people who are waiting outdoors for a taxi, bus, light rail, car service, rideshare or other mass transit or similar transportation service.

Violators may be “subject to civil or criminal penalties, including but not limited to prosecution for trespass,” the order says.

Businesses must post signs about the mandate and “must refuse entry or service to people who are not wearing masks,” the governor’s office says.

“No mask, no service. It’s simple, ” Polis said as he announced the order at a news conference at the governor’s mansion. “… This is a law like any other.”

If only it were that simple.

But alas, POTUS and his cadre of incompetent lackeys (yes Betsy DeVos, I’m thinking about you) have managed to make wearing a face mask (or not) a political statement. You would think that common sense in the midst of a worldwide pandemic that has already claimed north of 130,000 American lives would prevail. But I guess not.

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Oh, boy. Remember that most of these people (if not hospitalized or worse) will be voting in November. I digress. And I guess we are in a country where you still have a right to your own opinion, regardless of how misguided it might be.

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Still, I have a hard time understanding the opposition to wearing a mask. It seems to me to be a relatively minor inconvenience that could protect me or others from contacting the virus. It’s that simple.

And it’s not like we are completely free to do whatever we want whenever and wherever we want. For instance, I can’t imagine that I would be welcomed in the local grocery store if I decided it was my constitutional right not to wear pants.IMG_0022Good grief.

And I imagine some people have it way worse than being required to wear a face mask.

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Walmart, in fact, announced recently that it would require that everyone entering or working in a store would be required to wear a mask. That’s a good start, although I expect the policy will not be without its glitches.

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Oh, well. I guess it won’t be that simple after all.

A Nation Of Liars

Wow. We have more than 130,000 Americans (and counting) dead as a result of the coronavirus health crisis — and yet we have a game show TV host opining that it is all a conspiracy. Apparently everyone from the nation’s top public health experts to emergency room doctors and nurses are lying about this in a masterfully conceived plot to deny POTUS a second term.

Folks, you can’t make this shit up.

But amazingly — although I guess not unexpectedly — Trump appears to agree.

Here’s from The Washington Post:

With tweets, impromptu interviews and unscripted remarks, President Trump has increasingly undermined the public health message of his own government, adding a sense of confusion to what has been a disjointed and ineffective response to the novel coronavirus pandemic.
Public health experts say Trump’s efforts to deflect blame for the surging virus have become yet another distraction making it harder to slow the spread of covid-19, the highly contagious disease caused by the virus now infecting Americans at a record clip.
On Monday, Trump retweeted a message from Chuck Woolery, a longtime game show host and conservative commentator, that accused the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention of “lying” to the American public about the virus.
Trump in recent days has also accused Anthony S. Fauci, the nation’s top infectious-disease expert, of making “mistakes,” blasted CDC guidelines for opening schools as “impractical,” and repeatedly undercut public health officials’ recommendations by questioning the efficacy of masks and social distancing.

Here’s what Woolery said, via Yahoo News:

During a flurry of activity on his Twitter account, Trump retweeted a message from game show host Chuck Woolery that claimed “everyone is lying” about the coronavirus as part of a plot to sabotage the economy and hurt Trump’s reelection campaign.

“The most outrageous lies are the ones about Covid 19,” wrote Woolery in the message promoted by Trump. “Everyone is lying. The CDC, Media, Democrats, our Doctors, not all but most ,that we are told to trust. I think it’s all about the election and keeping the economy from coming back, which is about the election. I’m sick of it.”

Hmmmm.

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I take it Woolery, and many others, get their infectious disease creds directly from social media, and not the real world.

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Well, I’m not big for conspiracy theories. Especially those being advanced by a TV game show host — Chuck Woolery — and by a realty TV star — Trump — who somehow managed to con his way into the most important job on Planet Earth.

So call me naive but I believe the pandemic is real. It’s a big threat to lives and to our economy. And it’s not going away until we have some national leadership — of which we currently have none.

Here’s the problem in a nutshell, as shared by a group of conservative anti-Trumpers via The Lincoln Project:

When I was still working, I had the privilege to teach journalism at Kent State University. We taught the mechanics of journalism: writing, editing and so on. But we emphasized the ethical imperatives of honesty,  transparency and building trust.

All of those qualities have kind of been flushed down the toilet by a President and his supporters who have worked hard for the past several years to convince us we have become a nation of liars.

I don’t share that belief.

And come November, let’s hope we return honesty and leadership to the White House.

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Reopening Schools. Oh, Boy!

Well, let’s see. We’re into about month five or six of the coronavirus pandemic that has already killed tens of thousands of Americans and crippled our economy. And let’s be honest about it. The advice that members of the administration — and this includes the good doctor Fauci — has given us since the beginning has been misleading or in many cases just plain wrong.

Wait. I have to go wash my hands. While I’m gone, let’s check in on POTUS and see what he is doing to protect Americans and solve this crisis.

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Oops. I digress.

It’s bad enough when people like Trump and Fauci flounder, but when the most incompetent member of the administration, Betsy DeVos, joins the fray, it should be enough to send even the most naive mask-adverse patriot to get in the queue for a ventilator.

Devos, who somehow made enough campaign donations to get appointed Secretary of Education, wants the schools to open pronto — and risks to students, teachers and staff be damned.

Here’s what she told Fox news:

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos told “Fox News Sunday” that public schools that don’t reopen in the fall should not get federal funds, and that the money should be redirected to families who can use it to find another option for their children.

Why it matters: The Trump administration is engaged in a full-court press to reopen schools this fall, despite warnings from some public health officials that the coronavirus outbreak is out of control in many states and that it will be difficult for many schools to reopen safely.

Grilled by Fox’s Chris Wallace on what the administration is doing to make to make it safer or more feasible, DeVos repeatedly stressed that “kids cannot afford to not continue learning” and that she’s not talking about places where the virus is “out of control.”
“We’re talking about the rule, not the exception. And where there are hot spots in the future and in the fall, of course that has to be dealt with differently,” DeVos said.
On CNN’s “State of the Union,” DeVos was asked whether schools around the country should follow the CDC’s guidelines for reopening. She appeared to indicate there would be room for flexibility, stressing that the guidelines are simply recommendations.

“Every situation is going to look slightly different. And the key for education leaders, and these are smart people who can figure things out. They can figure out what is going to be right for their specific situation. Because every school building is different, every school population is different,” DeVos said.
President Trump has called the guidelines “very tough and expensive,” and Vice President Pence said the agency will put out a set of new documents about schools this week.

Oh, boy.

Reopening schools under these conditions seems to me to rely on a strong measure of wishful thinking, just like Trump’s belief that the virus will somehow magically disappear.

And it doesn’t appear that there is a universal consensus that opening schools now is the right thing to do.

Here’s from CNN:

Internal documents from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warned that fully reopening K-12 schools and universities would be the “highest risk” for the spread of coronavirus, according to a New York Times report, as President Donald Trump and his administration push for students and teachers to return in-person to classrooms.

The 69-page document obtained by the Times marked “For Internal Use Only” was among materials for federal public health response teams deployed to coronavirus hotspots to help local public health officials handle the outbreak, the newspaper reported.
The document was circulated this week, the Times reported, as Trump slammed the CDC guidelines around reopening schools and he, Vice President Mike Pence and Education Secretary Betsy DeVos increased their pressure on schools to fully reopen by the fall.
It is unclear whether the President viewed the CDC document, according to the Times.

And it appears that even the American Academy of Pediatrics is having second thoughts:

The American Academy of Pediatrics on Friday flipped its position on reopening schools in the fall, distancing itself from the Trump administration, which cited the organization’s initial stance in order to bolster its push to reopen all K-12 brick and mortar schools.

“Returning to school is important for the healthy development and well-being of children, but we must pursue re-opening in a way that is safe for all students, teachers and staff,” the AAP said in a statement. “Science should drive decision-making on safely reopening schools.”

The AAP added that public health agencies “must make recommendations based on evidence, not politics” and said “schools in areas with high levels of COVID-19 community spread should not be compelled to reopen against the judgment of local experts.

“We should leave it to health experts to tell us when the time is best to open up school buildings, and listen to educators and administrators to shape how we do it,” the AAP said.

” We should leave it to health experts…”

Well, in this environment, good luck with that.

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Well, as with most things, I don’t have a solution to this. It is a complex challenge with plenty of lives and money at risk. But shouldn’t it be a decision based on science and not politics?

So if I were still teaching at Kent State, would I show up in the classroom in another month or so?

Yes. It was my job. And I guess if people can work 40 hours or more a week at Walmart to make sure we have toilet paper then I could spend time in a classroom. But you can be sure I would take whatever precautions — social distancing, wearing a mask and so on — that I could.

And I would want to make sure that schools were being reopened after a careful study by health experts and administrators who have my best interests — and the interests of students, faculty and staff — at heart.

Fortunately I no longer have to make that decision.

But here’s the rub.

Schools aren’t like grocery stores, bars or retail outlets. You’re talking about young people who most likely won’t adhere to safety and health precautions.

So would you send your children back to school this fall?

I’m not so sure I would.

But I’m sure I would base the decision on medical experts were telling us — and not on the mostly faulty advice of politicians like POTUS and Betsy DeVos.

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Trump And The Beanstalk

Well, I knew that Trump had a strategy for combating the virus that has crippled our economy and taken as of now more than 120,000 American lives. So yesterday, POTUS opined that the pandemic will simply just sort of disappear.

You can’t make this stuff up.

Clearly we have reached the point where people are getting anxious about a potentially fatal illness that doesn’t appear to be going away anytime soon.

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So in the midst of all this we have a President who believes that this virus is just going to magically disappear.

Here’s from Forbes:

With the coronavirus pandemic taking a turn for the worse in the United States, with record daily new case counts and rising hospitalizations and positivity rates in Southern and Western states, President Trump on Wednesday continued to profess the belief that the disease will “sort of just disappear” during an interview on Fox Business.

KEY FACTS

For the fourth time in a week, the country set a fresh daily high for new confirmed coronavirus cases on Tuesday, with Dr. Anthony Fauci, the country’s top infectious disease official, telling a Senate committee that, “Clearly, we are not in total control right now.”

Nonetheless, Trump told Fox Business, “I think we’re gonna be very good with the coronavirus, I think at some point that’s going to sort of just disappear, I hope,” similar to assertions he’s been making since February 27, before declaring a national emergency in March.

Wow. Wishing and hoping. What a great strategy.

And I know this is a stretch since POTUS apparently doesn’t read, but I wonder if he developed this viewpoint based on the Jack and the Beanstalk fairy tale.

A children’s story. Jack, a poor country boy, trades the family cow for a handful of magic beans, which grow into an enormous beanstalk reaching up into the clouds. Jack climbs the beanstalk and finds himself in the castle of an unfriendly giant. The giant senses Jack’s presence and cries, “Fee, fie, fo, fum, I smell the blood of an Englishman!” Outwitting the giant, Jack is able to retrieve many goods once stolen from his family, including an enchanted goose that lays golden eggs. Jack then escapes by chopping down the beanstalk. The giant, who is pursuing him, falls to his death, and Jack and his family prosper.

Oh, boy.

Still, I suppose that many Trump supporters are willing to disregard the advice of medical experts and roll the dice with Trump and his magic beans.

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To Mask Or Not To Mask?

With all due respect to the musings of Shakespeare, it appears that wearing a face mask (or not) during a global pandemic has become the moral and political question of our time.

And I’ll admit that I’m not thrilled about wearing a face mask whenever I leave the relative safety of home. Yet I’m also not enthusiastic about the prospect of getting ill with a virus that has killed more than 120,000 Americans and counting.

Yet the face mask dilemma pretty much illustrates the administration’s fatally flawed response to this crisis.

Clearly, months ago the medical experts — including the good doctor Fauci and his cohorts at the CDC — didn’t understand the seriousness of the virus or how it spread or even to whom. So we entered the fray with an abundance of messages that as it turns out didn’t move the ball forward even an inch: masks don’t do any good, only the old and seriously ill could get the virus and so on.

Now the messages have changed, and everyone is being urged (in some cases required) to wear a face mask and we are told younger people are just as likely to get the virus as their elderly parents or grandparents.

I worked in communication related jobs for nearly 40 years, and I can say from personal experience that there is nothing worse than giving your audience a mixed message. Once someone grabs hold of information that supports their own beliefs, changing that message and getting them to believe something else is almost impossible.

And then add into the mix POTUS, someone who defines the Peter Principle and is so inept that he can’t find his ass with both hands in the dark. But at some level you have to give him credit. He managed to turn wearing a face mask into a political issue, and if you a caught wearing one in public you are a wuss while the true patriots are out there bare faced and protecting their constitutional rights and personal freedoms.

Good grief. If we took that approach during WWII, we would all be speaking German or Japanese today. I digress.

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Wow.

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Okay. I get it. As Patrick Henry said: “Give me liberty or give me death.”

Still, I’m not convinced that these modern day patriots have given this all the thought or study that they should. Again, some mixed messages.

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So I guess I’ll take the advice of the medical experts. And realistically, I don’t know if wearing a face mask does any good or not. But if nothing else, wearing one seems to say that I care enough not to want to contract the virus myself or pass it along to someone else.

That seems to be a rather straightforward message.

To mask or not to mask?

That is the question.

 

A Major Disappointment

Well, Trump’s attempt to restart his reelection campaign with a rally in Tulsa Saturday night didn’t go quite as planned. In fact, to call it “a major disappointment” seems to me to be a gross understatement.

POTUS and his advisers wanted and planned for a packed house, around 20,000. Instead, they ended up with about a third of that number, and I guess the best outcome now possible is the hope that most of those attending don’t end up with the virus. Oh, boy.

Okay, it’s possible that one reason attendance fell short was because young people punked the Prez by reserving tickets online even though they had no intention of attending. I imagine POTUS and crew are wondering where the Russian bots are when you need them. I digress.

In any event, it amazes this citizen journalist that anyone would be silly enough to attend this event in the midst of a pandemic that has claimed around 120,000 American lives and counting. Oh, wait. I forgot the audience.

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Still, the Prez is reportedly livid and distraught by the lackluster showing.

Here’s from NBC News:

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump is “furious” at the “underwhelming” crowd at his rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma, on Saturday evening, a major disappointment for what had been expected to be a raucous return to the campaign trail after three months off because of the coronavirus pandemic, according to multiple people close to the White House.

The president was fuming at his top political aides Saturday even before the rally began after his campaign revealed that six members of the advance team on the ground in Tulsa had tested positive for COVID-19, including Secret Service personnel, a person familiar with the discussions said.

Trump asked those around him why the information was exposed and expressed annoyance that the coverage ahead of his mega-rally was dominated by the revelation.

While the Trump re-election effort boasted that it would fill BOK Center, which seats more than 19,000 people, only 6,200 supporters ultimately occupied the general admission sections, the Tulsa fire marshal told NBC News.

And more:

Many issues could have contributed to the poor attendance in Tulsa: a fear of contracting the virus, concern over potential protests and torrential thunderstorms in 95-degree heat. But outside advisers see the visuals of empty seats overshadowing Trump’s remarks as a significant problem for a president and a campaign that are obsessed with optics.

“This was a major failure,” one outside adviser said.

Yep. A major failure.

And maybe the failure of this event portends even worse times ahead for the Trump campaign. Maybe people have finally caught on to the fact that Trump is both a con man and a danger to this country. And it doesn’t appear to me that he has any compelling argument for why he deserves a second term

Given all that, there are going to be plenty of empty seats at upcoming campaign events.

And in January, we’ll have a new President sitting in the Oval Office, with or without a face mask.

 

Survival Of The Fittest

I assume many (most?) Trump supporters don’t believe in evolution. Otherwise, you wouldn’t think that they would be so eager to test the notion of survival of the fittest by attending their leaders campaign rally in Tulsa on Saturday.

I don’t know. Maybe I’m nuts or just overly cautious. But I look at the statistics — and the response by POTUS — and I’m inclined to take this pandemic seriously.

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I guess from the perspective of Trump and the Republican Party leaders the last point on this chart — days till election — is the most important. And realistically, Trump’s  reelection has been the driver in most of the pathetic decisions that the administration has made regarding the economy and public health up to this point.

So with the goal line of November clearly in sight, Trump and his Republican enablers are willing to roll the dice and reopen venues that clearly could lead to another wave of the virus.

Case in point: Planning to pack some 20,000 people nose to nose in a crowded convention hall for a political rally. And apparently there are people willing to disregard all the cautions of the medical experts and expose themselves and others to what is potentially a life ending ailment.

Again, maybe I’m nuts or just being overly cautious, but I’m not gullible enough to put my life at risk to satisfy the political and career ambitions of a handful of elected officials and government flunkies.

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So good luck to those who plan to attend the Trump rally. As they say in the movie The Hunger Games: “May the odds forever be in your favor.”

 

 

The Virus And Beer Festivals

Okay. It’s time to admit defeat and concede that the Trump virus is going to alter life as we know if for months (at a minimum) to come.

I tried to remain optimistic after a scheduled trip to Hilton Head was cancelled in March.

And I kind of just shrugged my shoulders in resignation as the virus sunk my planned European river cruise in early June.

But now shit has gotten real. One of my favorite events every summer is the Breckenridge Summer Beer Fest, set this year for July 11. As I’ve written previously on these pages, it’s hard to top an event that combines a scenic mountain venue, blue skies and sunshine, with the best tasting craft beer from around the state.

Here’s my post from when I attended the festival two years ago.

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Beer And Happy Places

I spent a delightful day last Saturday, July 7, at Breckenridge, attending that community’s annual beer festival. Breckenridge is one of the happiest places I’ve been fortunate enough to visit. And since it’s only about a two hour drive from my home in Woodland Park, Breckenridge is a neat little mountain ski town that serves as a delightful venue for a short get-out-of-town vacation.

And sampling craft beer from about 50 vendors from Colorado and other parts of the United States, while being surrounded by mountains at more than 9,000 feet and with music pumping in the background, certainly adds to the experience.

Since moving to Colorado from Ohio I find I am more inclined to go to these kind of events. I guess it has something to do with the near perfect weather, long stretches of blue sky and sunlight, and low humidity.

Also, the mindset of people living in and visiting Colorado is different. Given the excuse to get outside, they appear all too pleased to take it. Me included.

And when you add beer to the mix, well, it’s a pretty happy place.

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Admittedly, it’s hard to hold a beer festival while at the same time asking people to social distance and wear a face mask. Although it doesn’t appear that the protesters — peaceful or otherwise — who have taken to the streets throughout the country are bound by similar restraints or concerns. I digress.

So I guess it should be no surprise that I learned today that this year’s event has been cancelled.

From the organizers:

Hello Friends!
We have come to the very difficult decision to cancel the Breckenridge Summer Beer Fest 2020. I know that we all wanted this event to happen so bad, but for the sake of all of our partners and the health of the community we are going to cancel this year’s event. We will plan to have the event next year. Please enjoy a beer in the sunshine on July 11th and send us a picture of yourselves drinking it!

Grrrrrrrr!

 

 

 

 

The Virus Is Winning

I guess it is a gross understatement to say that 2020 has been a miserable year, what with a pandemic already killing more than 100,000 in the USA, peaceful protests and riots gripping many American cities and dominating the news, and a mentally challenged President still trying to govern by tweet from the golf course.

Wonder how many parents who are trying to home school have turned to Sesame Street for help?

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I digress.

Anyway, for as bad as the year has been thus far, can it get any worse? Sure, why not! After all, we haven’t even reached the official kickoff for summer yet.

The legitimate and important discussion about racism and law enforcement will continue and will continue to dominate the news.

And we are only months away from what most likely will be a nasty, contentious election.

Then there is the virus. For months, many like me have been trying to follow the advice of medical experts: stay home as much as possible, social distance, where a mask, wash your hands and yada, yada, yada.

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The advice of medical experts appears to be wearing thin. And in the absence of any real leadership I guess that is understandable. Americans in principle don’t like to be told that we can’t do something or go somewhere. And financially many are hurting, with businesses closing or struggling to survive and unemployment increasing to numbers not seen since the Great Depression.

Still, like most matters these days, how we respond to the virus has become highly partisan, with Trump supporters on one side and those who still have the ability to reason and think on the other.

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So it appears that we are inviting the virus to make a return visit, one with consequences that could exceed the first bout. Maybe there is a lesson here from the movie The Hunger Games.

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Here’s from an article in The Atlantic, “The Virus Will Win“:

A second wave of the coronavirus is on the way. When it arrives, we will lack the will to deal with it. Despite all the sacrifices of the past months, the virus is likely to win—or perhaps it would be more accurate to say that it already has.

In absolute terms, the United States has been hit harder than any other country. About a quarter of worldwide deaths have been recorded on these shores. And while the virus is no longer growing at an exponential rate, the threat it poses remains significant: According to a forecasting model by Morgan Stanley, the number of American cases will, if current trends hold, roughly double over the next two months.

But neither the impact of mass protests over police brutality nor the effect of the recent reopening of much of the country—including the casinos in Las Vegas—is reflected in the latest numbers. It can take at least 10 days for people to develop symptoms and seek out a test, and for the results to be aggregated and disseminated by public-health authorities.

Yikes.

And the article continues:

Even so, the disease is slowly starting to recede from the public’s attention. After months of dominating media coverage, COVID-19 has largely disappeared from the front pages of most national newspapers. In recent polls, the number of people who favor “reopening the economy as soon as possible” over “staying home as long as necessary” has increased. And so it is perhaps no surprise that even states where the number of new infections stands at an all-time high are pressing ahead with plans to lift many restrictions on businesses and mass gatherings.

So how did we end up in this mess? The Atlantic’s Yascha Mounk offers an opinion that strikes me as being correct:

In the fullness of time, many books will be written about why a country as rich, powerful, and scientifically advanced as the United States failed quite so badly at coping with a public-health emergency that experts had predicted for many years. As is always the case, competing explanations will quickly emerge. Some will focus on the incompetence of the Trump administration, while others will draw attention to the country’s loss of state capacity; some will argue that the United States is an outlier, while others will put its failure in the context of other countries, such as Brazil and Russia, that are also faring poorly.

I do not intend to offer a first draft of history. We are too close to the events to judge, with a cool head, which factors are most responsible for putting us in our current tragic situation. But I would like to offer a partial list of individuals and institutions who, however central or peripheral their contribution to the ultimate outcome, have helped to get us into this mess:

If the virus wins, it is because the World Health Organization downplayed the threat for far too long.

If the virus wins, it is because Donald Trump was more interested in hushing up bad news that might hurt the economy than in saving American lives.

If the virus wins, it is because the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, created to deal with just this kind of emergency, has proved to be too bureaucratic and incompetent to do its job.

If the virus wins, it is because the White House did not even attempt to put a test-and-trace regime into place at the federal level.

Well, it looks to me like the virus is winning now — and wait until the fall when schools attempt to reopen.

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Good grief.