WHAT’S UP: The Trump administration has announced its unconditional surrender to the Covid-19 pandemic. Donald Trump has surrendered without ever joining the battle. I have no doubt he will be remembered as the greatest presidential failure in American history
This administration is surrounding to one of the greatest threats to the public because money, the economy, is more important than lives. As Bob Woodward’s tapes made perfectly clear, Trump actually knew the extreme dangers of an epidemic that has so far claimed 230,000 US deaths ― a toll that rises by around 1,000 each day of Trump’s inaction.
But that’s not the worse of it.
According to the National Center for Disaster Preparedness “estimated that at least 130,000 deaths and perhaps as many as 210,000 could have been avoided with earlier policy interventions and more robust federal coordination and leadership”.
Even with the dramatic recent appearance of new COVID-19 waves globally, the abject failures of U.S. government policies and crisis messaging persist. U.S. fatalities have remained disproportionately high throughout the pandemic when compared to even other high-mortality countries. The inability of the U.S. to mitigate the pandemic is especially stark when contrasted with the response of high- income nations, such as South Korea, Japan, Australia, Germany, France, and Canada, as well as low- and middle-income countries as varied as Thailand, Pakistan, Honduras, and Malaysia. All of these nations have had greater success in protecting their populations from the impact of the coronavirus.
A country with just 4% of the world’s population have lost their lives, accounting for one-fifth of all COVID-19 deaths worldwide.
Why are U.S. deaths disproportionately high?
1ne: Insufficient testing capacity.
- From the start of the pandemic, the U.S. has lagged behind in virus testing efforts, which consequentially has led to an inability to rapidly identify and contain outbreaks through contact tracing efforts and targeted interventions.
- More than two months after the virus first emerged in the U.S., members of Congress wrote the Secretary of Health and Human Services on April 8th asking for a national strategy for testing which failed to materialize.
2wo: Delayed response.
- Delayed interventions and lockdowns in the U.S. – along with a lack of federal guidance – exacerbated the rapid spread of the coronavirus in the U.S. and resulted in tens of thousands of avoidable deaths according to researchers from Columbia University disease modelers.
- If social distancing guidelines and other control measures had been introduced just 1-2 weeks earlier in major metropolitan areas, researchers estimate that 62% of confirmed cases – and 55% of deaths – could have been averted.
3hree: Politicization, leadership vacuum, and the failure of top officials to model best practices.
▸ Many nations facing the pandemic crisis have put politics aside and orchestrated a response led by public health experts and global coordination. Canada, for instance, has witnessed a unique period of political unity surrounding COVID-19 this year.
• According to Canadian researchers, “Unlike in the United States, response to the coronavirus is not constructed by partisanship,” but rather that “Canadian political elites and the public are in a unique period of cross-partisan consensus on important questions related to the COVID-19 pandemic, such as its seriousness and the necessity of social distancing.
In reading this report any normal person would be outraged and angry but these are not normal political times. Intelligent people know that failure in leadership is a failure for our country.
Countries and people who don’t learn from history are due to relive it. For the leader of the free world to ask states to open up and ridicule people who wear masks is a slap to the whole country. I will be glad when the Trump Presidency is over but he, and others, must pay for the crime of allowing so many people to die. It’s unconscionable.