Thursday, February 27, 2020

Trump's Coronavirus: Bush's Hurricane Katrina, Obama's Deepwater Horizon

Watching President Donald Trump's press conference on his administration's response to the coronavirus pandemic brought back memories of prior Presidential failures.  President George W. Bush had Hurricane Katrina and President Barack Obama had the Deepwater Horizon (Gulf Oil Spew) disaster.

The Trump administration's lack of testing is akin to Obama's understating the amount of oil spewing from the ocean floor and allowing BP to sink the oil.

People have entered the United States from global hotspots for the last month and a half.  Chinese people from Wuhan took flights to Thailand and then to the U.S.  How many of these travelers had the disease and were able to spread it within their American communities? 

Trump wants to control the narrative and is having Vice President Mike Pence head up the response, as well as vet all comments from government experts. A public health expert said the move was analogous to "putting an arson in charge of a fire department."

Trump added Foreclosure King and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Economic Advisor Larry Kudlow to the Coronavirus Task Force.

President Trump's press conference was about image management, not public health preparation.  I pray for the American people as we hope for the best and prepare for the worst.

Update 2-29-20:  A U.S. patient died from the coronavirus the day after President Trump called the outbreak a new hoax by Democrats.  Problems with the CDC test for coronavirus turned the administration's de facto policy into "Don't test, don't tell."

Update 3-1-20:  Malfunctioning coronavirus tests have frustrated public health labs and delayed outbreak monitoring. 

Update 3-3-20:  CDC no longer reports the number of COVID-19 tests administered on its website.  FOX News reported Trump ordered an investigation in faulty test kits as part of his administration's perfect response to coronavirus pandemic. An ER physician stressed the importance of testing to address the pandemic and expressed frustration at the lack of available tests.

Update 3-5-20:  WHO advises countries to act aggressively to stop spread of virus.  CNBC article stated "scientists currently do not believe that asymptomatic transmission is a “major driver” of the disease."  President Trump says people will go to work with the disease in direct opposition to CDC recommendations that people with illness stay home. Former White House Press Chief Anthony Scaramucci said the coronavirus could be Trump's Katrina.

Update 3-6-20:  Trump said this morning "“It will go away,” he said. “We have very low numbers [of confirmed cases] compared to many countries throughout the world, our numbers are lower than almost anyone...deaths, is it 11?...This came unexpectedly, it came out of China, we closed it down, we stopped it, it was a very early shut down,” he added.  Time reported "President Donald Trump’s visit to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta has been called off because of concerns that a staff member may have been infected by the coronavirus."  That visit did happen after the test came back negative.

The Trump Coronavirus team refused to answer a question on uninsured Americans getting tested for the coronavirus.  Secretary of State Mike Pompeo blamed China in a CNBC interview "That’s not the way infectious disease doctors tell me it should work. It’s not the way America works with transparency and openness and the sharing of the information that needs to take place."

Update 3-7-20:  America's foot dragging on testing remains.  "There has been an astonishing degree of hubris, incompetence and a complete lack of human concern or care."  President Trump did congratulate himself on his interest and understanding of the science during a visit to the CDC.  His administration's "no bad news" management of crisis has fallen way short.  GM management rode such a strategy on the brake failure crisis, which also resulted in the unnecessary loss of human life.

Update 3-13-20:  On Friday the 13th testing patients for coronavirus remains a problem for primary care physicians as test kits remain unavailable.  This is 48 days after Chris Martensen at Peak Prosperity encouraged all countries of the world to activate and scale up emergency systems, communicate with the public on how to stay safe, and test & treat everyone at risk.  President Trump held a news conference today on the coronavirus and said "Yeah, no, I don’t take responsibility at all, because we were given a set of circumstances and we were given rules, regulations, and specifications from a different time,” he said. “It wasn’t meant for this kind of an event with the kind of numbers that we’re talking about."

Update 3-14-20:  Harris County switched coronavirus testing labs as Houston is experiencing community spread.   Harris County will use Labcorp to test patients for the disease, "circumvent the government laboratory’s more rigid criteria."

Update 3-15-20:   "The worsening situation has been acknowledged even by allies of the president. “We probably lost the chance to have an outcome like South Korea,” said Scott Gottlieb, a former Food and Drug Administration chief under Trump, referencing a country that has helped curb the outbreak by testing nearly 20,000 people every day. “We must do everything to avert the tragic suffering being borne by Italy.”

Update 3-22-20:   President George W. Bush had the Hurricane Pam drill prior to Katrina swamping New Orleans and the Gulf Coast.  President Trump had a pandemic drill in October 2019.  Four days ago Bloomberg reported "What’s happening now is much worse in the sense that the U.S. response has been even more ineffective than we would have assumed,” said Sam Brannen, a senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies’ International Security Program, who helped lead the exercise. “The president undercutting his own officials and his messaging -- I’m stunned by the scale of it.”

Update 3-25-20:   A strange new meme opened up for seniors to work to keep the economy going so young people will have an America to enjoy.  This is shocking from the family values party, especially as seniors make up a small portion of the workforce.  Retirees may have to go back to work given huge declines in their 401k and IRA accounts.
"The LameStream Media is the dominant force in trying to get me to keep our Country closed as long as possible in the hope that it will be detrimental to my election success. The real people want to get back to work ASAP. We will be stronger than ever before!"-- Donald J. Trump, March 25, 2020
This should be his order of business:

Update 3-26-20:  The Trump team dusted off the unprecedented word W. used after Hurricane Katrina.  Trump mobilized it to defend his early denial, missteps and failure to competently respond to a global health menace. FP chronicled Trump's coronavirus failures to date.

Update 3-28-20:  Yes, the responsibility is his and his team's.

Update 4-4-20:   Trump's early inaction has been costly for the U.S.  “You can have the best system in the world, but if you give the virus an eight-week head start it will eat you alive.”

Three weeks ago, Pueyo reminds us, the US had fewer than 1,000 confirmed cases at a time when Trump was telling the world: “No, I’m not concerned at all. No, I’m not. No, we’ve done a great job.”

Now it stands at almost a quarter of a million. “This is what exponential growth looks like,” he said.

The number of U.S. cases is nearly 280,000.  That will double in a matter of days and within 8-9 days exponential growth would add a zero the the back of that figure (from 280.000 to 2.8 million).

Nero fiddled while Rome burned.  Bush strummed a guitar during Hurricane Katrina.  Trump hunched over COVID-19, an exponential health threat.

Update 4-7-20:  White House Economic Advisor Peter Navarro warned Trump on January 29th that a pandemic could kill up to 1 to 2 million Americans.  He reiterated the alarm in late February.  So it was not unimaginable.  Instead of acting Trump hunched.

Update 4-8-20:  Politico reported President Trump broke the agencies charged with protecting Americans from a pandemic like COVID-19.

Update 4-10-20:  For Trump image is everything.  Truth tellers within his administration pay the price, sometimes with their careers.  Trump's incompetence raised the death toll in our country.  He takes no, as in zero responsibility for that.

Update 4-12-20:  NYT reported, "Dozens of interviews with current and former officials and a review of emails and other records revealed many previously unreported details and a fuller picture of the roots and extent of his halting response as the deadly virus spread."  Guardian added, "The Trump administration’s self-centred, haphazard, and tone-deaf response [to Covid-19] will end up costing Americans trillions of dollars and thousands of otherwise preventable deaths,” wrote Stephen Walt, professor of international relations at Harvard.

Update 4-13-20:  Real Deal reported the death of Stanley Chera due to complications from the coronavirus.  Chera was a good friend of President Trump.   The coronavirus does not see wealth. power of political connections.  Trump fumed about reports that social distancing had been advised in late February but were not implemented until mid-March.

Update 4-15-20:  Trump had no answer for why there were no accomplishments in February in his video defending his response to the coronavirus.  Trump personally attacked the reporter.  The next day the President blamed the World Health Organization which deserves scrutiny but not scapegoating.  Cutting funding in the midst of a global pandemic may come back to haunt Donald Trump.

Update 4-17-20:  Trump encouraged his followers to get out and protest stay at home orders in three Blue states.   Were any super spreaders at the rallies?  A lack of testing means asymptomatic COVID-19 cases could have attended.  The U.S. remains far from the gold standard pandemic approach.  Nero fiddled, Bush strummed, Trump hunched.

Update 4-18-20:   "Overriding all else is the spectacle of a President, duly elected by the American people, who is a malicious psychopath with not a single redeeming trait. A physical, intellectual and emotional spectre who would defy our imaginative powers were he not on display before our eyes. He has gathered around him a witch’s coven of scoundrels, crooks and crackpots as bereft of mind and ethics as he is. They also are inveterate liars; Trump himself is a congenital liar since clinical narcissism is inborn. Yet, we refer to this motley assemblage as an ‘administration’ – in our impulse to ‘normalize’ the abominable. No dry bill of particulars is necessary, nor could it do justice, to the squalid theater we see played out before us on a daily basis. This man, at this moment, is viewed favorably by 46% of the public. That reality eclipses everything else."  Trump followers have three scapegoats, the World Health Organization, Bill Gates and Dr. Anthony Fauci.  President Trump's latest hunch is America is ready to reopen.  Ten years on the Gulf Coast is yet to recover from the BP Oil Spew, Obama's albatross.

Update 4-20-20:   President Trump's two faces could be seen in his exhortations to liberate states with Democratic governors.  He did so the day after introducing a framework for governors to reopen America.  The Vice President defended El Jefe on Meet the Press.

Update 4-21-20:  Conditions exist for another Gulf Oil Spew.  Experts say nothing has changed.

Update 4-22-20:  Economist Joseph Stiglitz believes Trump's poor coronavirus response will usher in another Great Depression.  El Jefe's lack of empathy has been noted as he rushes to reopen the economy.

Update 4-23-20:  President Trump suggested using UV light and chemical disinfectants to treat seriously ill COVID-19 patients, horrifying medical experts. More Trump hunching, this time medical.

Update 4-25-20:   After proposing environmental surface cleaning practices by used internally on humans to kill the coronavirus President Trump took bold action and declared his suggestions were "sarcasm."    His attempted walk back occurred as "the US death toll topped 50,000 and the grim milestone of 1 million coronavirus cases grows nearer."  It was also the highest number of new cases in the United States.  There were, 36,200 new positives on Friday, according to Johns Hopkins University.

Update 4-26-20:   Two months ago President Trump said “And again, when you have 15 people, and the 15 within a couple of days is going to be down to close to zero, that’s a pretty good job we’ve done.” The number of U.S. deaths from the coronavirus reached 54,883 this evening.

Update 4-27-20:  The Trump White House  officially canceled today's planned Covid-19 coronavirus task force press briefing scheduled for 5:00 pm EST.  A news report indicated the White House was planning to shift to events focused on the economy rather than the public health crisis in the coming days.  Trump canceled his own show due to poor ratings, yet the need for information from the Federal Coronavirus Task Force remains high.  Trump's punching back hard after his disastrous bleach/UV light comments means sidelining Drs. Fauci and Birx. President Trump held the briefing which can be viewed here.

Update 4-28-20:  WaPo reported President Trump received dozens of coronavirus warnings in January and February via intelligence briefings.

Update 4-29-20:   More than 60,000 people in the U.S. have now officially died from the coronavirus, data compiled by Johns Hopkins University shows. The increasingly grim figure exceeds predictions President Donald Trump made just last week when he sought to frame a maximum of 50,000 to 60,000 total deaths as a win for America and a validation of his administration’s highly criticized pandemic response.  Trump will not extend social distancing guidelines that kept deaths lower than they would have been.  President Trump's son-in-law called the White House response a "great success story."

Update 4-30-20:  Trump claims his government's handling of the coronavirus has been "spectacular."  Federal guidelines on social distancing are set to expire at midnight tonight.  At least two dozen states will begin reopening with greater social movement and business activity.  There were more than 2,600 new deaths in the US from coronavirus yesterday. Nonpharmaceutical interventions helped bend the curve away from its initial exponential expression.

Those NPIs are about to be relaxed as part of the balance to keep a functioning economy going.

Update 5-1-20:   National Review noted "The Trump administration’s response to the pandemic has been among the greatest leadership failures in all of American history,” Metzl said. “Not only did they feel to heed the warnings, not only did they completely screw up the testing, but the president of the United States was actively spewing deadly misinformation to the American people and denying this crisis as it was playing out.”

Update 5-2-20:  CDC official said: "Limited testing and delayed travel alerts for areas outside China contributed to the jump in US cases starting in late February."  The nation's top public health agency missed opportunities to slow the spread. Trump continues to punch back those who do not back up his spectacular response narrative.  Trump hunches, then punches.

Update 5-3-20:  Katrina's George W. Bush released a message of unity and hope in contrast to Trump's intermittent hunches and combative division.  Bush said "we are not partisan combatants, we are human beings."

Update 5-4-20:  The Cassandra that called for a pandemic called President Trump "the most incompetent, foolhardy buffoon imaginable."  Laurie Garrett believes Americans may show their collective rage as they realize billionaires continue getting richer while tens of millions of common people are wiped out.  Comedian John Oliver assessed the Trump team's month late response.

Update 5-5-20:  President Trump said on 4-30-20:  "The testing has been incredible now, and to a level that nobody's seen... we have tested more than all countries put together."  The next day our local hospital cited problems getting testing supplies.

Mission accomplished the Trump team turns their attention to reopening the economy and Donald Trump's reelection..

Update 5-6-20:  President Trump visited a medical protective mask plant in Arizona and discussed his plans to set doctors aside in a new reopening Task Force.  Trump wore safety glasses but no mask.

Update 5-7-20: The Intercept unmasked Trump's slow PPE response.  The HHS Assistance Secretary for Preparedness and Response sat on his keister.  Eventually Jared Kushner's slim suit crowd intervened with little actual impact. as detailed by a whistleblower.

Update 5-8-20:  President Trump said too much coronavirus testing makes the U.S. look bad, which was the foundation of his "Don't Test, Don't Tell" strategy earlier this year.  Trump will get a daily coronavirus test after a White House valet came down with the disease.  Image trumps substance in our President's All About Me world.  On National Nurses Day Trump said the PPE problem was gone, then squashed a nurse practitioner who said supplies continued to be sporadic.  Every day is President's Day.

Trump's CDC won't release guidelines for employers to operate safely under the coronavirus pandemic.  It does not want to set a regulatory standard for a safe return to work.  “We recognize that there could be a difference of opinion in regards to whether or not an employer is meeting health and safety standards.  It’s basically a reasonable person’s standards.”

Trump said "there will be more death."  One philanthropist believes the poor federal response has caused unnecessary suffering and death.

A member of Vice President Mike Pence's staff tested positive for COVID-19.

Update 5-10-20:  President Obama called Trump's coronavirus response a "chaotic disaster."  Obama sunk the oil during the Gulf Oil Spew and lied about the numbers.  Strikingly similar to Trump's "Don't test, don't tell" for the coronavirus.  Add Obama's free pass to Wall Street and the greed/leverage boys for the financial crisis and one arrives at:  Politicians Red & Blue love PEU.

Update 5-12-20:  A University of Washington epidemiologist said she has been consistently been let down by the federal response and compared the lack of leadership to her work in developing African countries,  She called the leadership vacuum tremendous and compared the lull in the crisis to the eye of a hurricane.  Bad news on the hurricane front as forecasters predict an active hurricane season.

Update 5-13-20:  Fed Chair Jay Powell said 40% of people making less than $40,000/year who were employed in February, lost their job in March.   Trump and some of his aides have begun questioning whether deaths are being over-counted.  Sadly, Trump doesn't lead or follow, but he does get in the way.  Income inequality widened under the pandemic.

Update 5-14-20:  The anti-science Trump team sidelined the Centers for Disease Control in our national health emergency.

Update 5-15-20:  The US has emerged as a global hotspot for the pandemic, a giant petri dish for the Sars-CoV-2 virus. As the death toll rises, Trump’s claims to global leadership have became more far-fetched.  Trump followers are denying the death toll.

Update 5-16-20:  Muzzled for over a week

Update 5-23-20:

Update 5-26-20:  African Americans in Texas are dying of Covid-19 at a rate more than one-third higher than their share of the population.  Trump administration officials have cited health disparities as a reason.

Update 5-27-20:  US COVID-19 deaths pass 100,000. Data from Johns Hopkins University shows that the United States has recorded more than 100,000 deaths from Covid-19, moving past a sombre milestone even as many states relax mitigation measures to stop the spread of the novel coronavirus. The US has recorded more deaths from the disease than any other country in the pandemic, and almost three times as many as the second-ranking country, Britain, which has recorded more than 37,000 Covid-19 deaths. The latest count of fatalities is 100,047. Earlier this month, president Donald Trump said 100,000 deaths would be “horrible”

Update 5-28-20:   As the U.S neared 100,000 deaths President Trump declared war on Twitter.  South Korea COVID-19 deaths total 269 to date while the U.S. is at 100,467 and rising.  A COVID-19 U.S. timeline helps to remind citizens of the actual chronology vs. Punch Back President Trump's.

Update 6-1-20:   President Trump had riot police and National Guard officers remove peaceful protesters with tear gas, rubber bullets and flash bangs so he could walk up to St. John's Episcopal Church and hold up a Bible.  The country had just over 115,000 coronavirus deaths.

Update 6-2-20:  COVID-19 advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci revealed the President no longer meets with him on tackling the coronavirus.  Their last interaction was May 18th.

Update 6-14-20:  The White House is floating the idea that big increases in COVID-19 cases in the Southern U.S. came from Mexico, despite Mexico's having far fewer cases than the U.S. and travel between the countries being down significantly.

Update 6-15-20:  The ever fading Trump Coronavirus Task Force may hold a session for the public before the end of June.

Update 6-19-20:  Coronavirus cases are increasing due to an inconsistent public response, which is a mirror for the inconsistent government response.  The CDC flip-flopped on wearing masks, the one strategy if adopted right away, could have stifled the spread of cases.  Our mask phobic White House is another part of the inconsistent government response.  Many Red team members won't wear masks as it impinges on their freedom.

Update 6-20-20:  President Trump told his fans in Tulsa, OK, "When you do testing to that extent, you’re going to find more people. You’re going to find more cases. So I said to my people, ‘Slow the testing down, please!’”

Update 6-21-20:  A daughter speaks out about the death of her father due to COVID-19 on Father's Day, stressing his death was completely preventable.

Update 6-22-20:  U.S. passes 120,000 deaths.  European leaders base coronavirus response on science.   U.S. response " cherry-picked models that at each point looked the most rosy, and fundamentally not engaged with the magnitude of the problem."

Update 6-25-20:  Texas had record 5,551 new cases yesterday.  The White House confirmed on Wednesday it will no longer fund 13 testing sites, including seven in Texas, despite that state reporting record highs in the number of coronavirus cases.  That's one way for Trump's people to "slow down the testing."

Update 6-26-20:  As the U.S. hit a daily record number of new COVID-19 cases the Trump administration asked the Supreme Court to end the Affordable Care Act.  Taking away coverage in the midst of his botched pandemic response is cruel. VP Mike Pence will lead first public coronavirus task force briefing in months.  Pence was completely tone deaf to the seriousness of the exponential rise in cases in a number of states.  No gold standard pandemic approach for you.

Update 6-28-20:   President Trump spent the 272nd day of his presidency at one of his golf clubs.  Trump shouted "Four" before retweeting a video showing seniors yelling at one another,  Early in the video a man shouts "White Power".  Worldwide coronavirus cases passed the 10 million mark and the U.S. reached  2.5 million cases while the President was recreating and playing on social media.

Update 6-29-20:  Dr Anthony Fauci said people not wearing masks was “a recipe for disaster” and said of the Trump administration’s attempts at contact tracing: “I don’t think we’re doing very well.”

Update 6-30-20:   Dr. Anthony Fauci said the US was unlikely to achieve herd immunity to the coronavirus even with a vaccine, given a third of Americans say they would not receive it.  “There is a general anti-science, anti-authority, anti-vaccine feeling among some people in this country – an alarmingly large percentage of people, relatively speaking,” Fauci said.  The CDC's Assistant Director added, “We’re not in the situation of New Zealand or Singapore or Korea, where a new case is rapidly identified and all the contacts are traced and people are isolated who are sick and people who are exposed are quarantined and they can keep things under control.”  The botched pandemic response continues for Trump's plague.

Update 7-5-20:   Donald Trump delivered much-needed good news to the American people this week. Coronavirus, he told Fox Business, was “just going to disappear”.  However on planet Earth the virus continued exploding, especially in the Red states of Florida and Texas.  Covid-19 is spreading uncontrolled, hospitalizations are rising in at least a dozen states, and – six months into the crisis – the United States has failed to muster a unified response. It’s crystal clear that Covid-19 won’t “just disappear”, as President Trump said this week – and the pandemic certainly won’t end if wishful thinking continues to be our federal response plan.

Update 7-6-20:   The Trump administration wants Americans to move on while coronoavirus cases continue growing across the South and West.  Vanity Fair wrote "Though the coronavirus crisis in the United States is worse than ever, with well over 130,000 Americans now dead from COVID-19 and confirmed cases skyrocketing, Donald Trump has continued to play down the pandemic, ignoring it in speeches in favor of driving home the importance of Confederate monuments. When he has spoken of the virus, he has been as dismissive as he was in the pandemic’s early days. Americans must get used to dying of the virus according to the White House.

Update 7-9-20:   Trump relegates Dr. Anthony Fauci to podcasts while the U.S. breaks new case records on nearly a daily basis.  The U.S. has over 3.1 million cases and over 133,000 deaths.

Update 7-10-20:  Trump has not been briefed by Dr. Fauci on the coronavirus in two months.  Trump told FOX News Fauci "made a lot of mistakes." Trump is a COVID-19 denier.  You are on your own.

Update 7-11-20:  Republican strategists think Trump is close to the point of no return. A couple of others wondered if Trump had reached his ‘Katrina’ moment: a permanent loss of trust and faith of the majority of voters.” 76 year old epidemiologist Larry Brilliant said in a Wired interview, "it is the first time we have had a pandemic in the United States in which we have had such a total, abysmal failure of our federal government.,,  To this day we do not have a federal pandemic plan.   We are now in the middle of the summer and this puppy is exploding."  President Trump is golfing again today at his Sterling, Virginia golf club.

Update 7-12-20:  The White House made a list of the times Dr. Anthony Fauci has been wrong on the coronavirus.  Staff are still working on the number of times President Trump has lied about the virus.  The scroll increases in length daily.

Update 7-14-20:  Hedge fund manager said:  "Trump talking down COVID-19 risk gave investors an incredible gift -- it kept markets resilient much longer than they should have, and enabled us to ensure our portfolio was sensibly positioned."

Update 7-16-20:   The Republican Governor of Maryland hammered Trump for his coronavirus debacle in a WaPo editorial.  Trump shifted hospital COVID-19 reporting from the CDC to HHS and the data will no longer be public.  Obama sank the oil.  Trump buries pandemic data from public view.

Update 7-18-20:   Over "four months into the pandemic, with test results delayed, contact tracing scarce, protective equipment dwindling and emergency rooms once again filling, the United States finds itself in a fight for its life: swamped by partisanship, mistrustful of science, engulfed in mask wars and led by a president whose incompetence is rivaled only by his indifference to Americans’ suffering."  Dr. Anthony Fauci has no idea why White House Economic Advisor Peter Navarro wrote a highly critical op-ed targeting him.  I do.  Trump knew he didn't have the credibility for a direct attack, so minion Navarro took the shot Trump wanted to take.

Update 7-19-20:   The Guardian reported "As Congress and the Trump White House negotiate the next stimulus and relief package for an economy and a nation hammered by Covid-19, the White House is seeking to block funding for testing and tracing efforts, and other key areas of the pandemic response... In talks over the weekend, administration officials instead pushed to zero out the funding for testing and for the nation’s top health agencies."  As Obama sank the oil, Trump wants there to be no evidence of a worsening epidemic in the U.S.  Trump believes fewer tests, fewer cases, better image for himself.  Trump golfed again today.

Update 7-20-20:  More than 1,200 members of the US National Academy of Sciences have rebuked Donald Trump’s “denigration of scientific expertise” in an open letter seeking to “restore science-based policy in government”.

Update 7-22-20:  President Trump held his second press conference to update the public on America's coronavirus outbreaks in the South and West.  He did not have the Tack Force chair or physician members attend so little actual information was shared about the way forward to stopping this crisis.  Today, over 1,100 people died of COVID-19, nearly 200 of those in Texas..

Update 7-26-20:  Is President Trump hands on or hands off the coronavirus?  Between Tuesday and Friday, the US saw more than 1,000 deaths each day from Covid-19, with confirmed cases in the mid-70,000s daily. According to Johns Hopkins University there have now been nearly 4.2m cases recorded and more than 146,000 people have died.  Trump golfed for the 16th time since Memorial Day weekend, the behavioral kickoff for soaring coronavirus cases in the U.S.

Update 7-28-20:  After a weekend of golfing and fundraising President Trump attacked Dr. Anthony Fauci as misleading the public on the pandemic.  The New York Times reported Monday that Trump was so angered by Fauci being invited to throw out a pitch by the Washington Nationals baseball team that he claimed to have been invited to do the same by the New York Yankees.  No such invitation had been made, leading aides to scramble to save face.

Update 7-29-20:  President Trump left his new tone in a series of tweets, which he magnified during press conference questioning.  Trump lamented Dr. Fauci's high public opinion, even as he undermines his advisor and keeps him away from the media.  It was bizarre, nearly a chlorine/disinfectant/UV light moment.

Representative Gohmert tested positive for the coronavirus.  He said he would not wear a mask until he tested positive.   "[I]f I get it," he told CNN in June, "you'll never see me without a mask."  Gohmert was scheduled to fly to Midland, Texas on Wednesday morning with President Donald Trump and tested positive in a pre-screen at the White House.  In Midland, Texas, Trump will visit the Double Eagle Energy Oil Rig and attend a fundraiser.

Six months of Trump denials on coronavirus.   U.S passes 150,000 deaths with over 4.4 million cases.

Update 8-1-20:  Vanity Fair ran a story on Jared Kushner's national coronavirus testing plan, which evaporated when early cases were all in blue states.

Update 8-5-20:  Trump called Dr. Deborah Birx pathetic after she said the virus was extraordinarily widespread.   He defended his botched response in a bizarre Axios interview.  Trump continues to hold coronavirus press conferences without public health experts and medical professionals.

Update 8-7-20:   Trump landed in New Jersey last night and headed to his Bedminster Golf Club for the weekend.  Deaths topped 160,000.  How many rounds of golf will he get in this weekend?

Update 8-10-20:  President Trump introduced Dr. Scott Atlas, new COVID-19 advisor to the White House.  Dr. Atlas is a neuroradiologist and currently senior fellow of the Hoover Institute  'Pathetic" Dr. Birx and "Alarmist" Dr. Fauci have been pushed aside.  The Guardian reviewed how Trump got the pandemic response wrong.

Update 8-11-20:  Dark comedian Donald Trump wants people to "stop politicizing" the pandemic as he undertakes a "science based" response.  I needed both of those laughs.   President Trump held another bizarre press conference on the China virus.  Dr. Atlas attended but did not speak. Obama sank the oil and lied about the volume of oil spewing from the ocean floor.  Trump sank his public health/virology experts in favor of Dr. Atlas..  Compliance and adulation are everything to a man like Trump.

Update 8-12-20:   Trump let neuroradiologist Dr. Scott Atlas speak at today's press conference.  Atlas provided no scientific data for the public but he did high level pandering to our Ego-in-Chief.  Like the White House Florida is not listening to scientists.

Update 8-13-20:  Trump's Coronavirus updates have little to do with COVID-19 and are more of a campaign tool.  Dr. Anthony Fauci is very concerned about America's epidemic.  All told, the United States could see up to 300,000 deaths from Covid-19 by the end of the year.

Update 8-19-20:  President Trump started off his Coronavirus briefing with Iran.  Dr. Fauci and Dr. Birx have been banished in favor of a politically oriented neuroradiologist and the My Pillow CEO.  Right Scott?  Trump said "the role of testing is to prevent transmission period."  He once said "slow the testing down."  Did he do that to goose transmission? Trump spoke the "science based" words again, the day after suggesting toxic oleander extract be considered.

Update 8-24-20:  President Trump touted convalescent plasma treatment as a great breakthrough after leading physicians called study data weak.  Government scientists and doctors remain shut out of any public role while Trump ignores their input.  The Carlyle Group is pleased convalescent plasma remains in play for big profits.

Update 8-27-20:  The CDC bowed to political pressure for fewer tests (President Trump) and made testing optional for people exposed to others with positive COVID-19 tests.  Physicians and public health professionals have long called for more testing.  Testing volumes dropped in the U.S. over the last few weeks.  Managing President Trump's image takes precedent over managing a pandemic.  The U.S. death toll is over 180,000 people.  Trump accepted the Republican nomination for a second term with thousands of mask-less supporters sitting next to one another.  That is not in compliance with CDC guidelines, unless Trump changed those right before his White House production, which included "Trump 2020" in a fireworks display.
Update- 9-3-20:  President Trump said he inherited Dr. Fauci who has been brushed aside in favor of Dr. Atlas,- a one-time promoter of herd immunity.  Fauci asked the public to not their their guard down over Labo:r Day weekend, calling the number of new cases unacceptably high.  Memorial Day and 4th of July gatherings resulted in spikes in cases in the U.S.   Fauci stated the strategy is to prevent infections.  Trump advocated for herd immunity.  One might have deduced that from his South Lawn speech during the RNC when 1.500 people sat in close quarters with no masks.  
Update 9-8-20:  The death rate in the US from Covid-19 among African Americans and Latinos is rising sharply, exacerbating the already staggering racial divide in the impact of the pandemic which has particularly devastated communities of color.  Days ago President Trump cancelled the federal government's training on racism.
Update 9-12-20:  On February 7, 2020 President Trump told reporter Bob Woodward the coronavirus was deadly stuff and was caught through the air.  Trump deliberately played down the virus to the public while not preparing for a deadly pandemic.  A Health and Human Services spokesman tried to get the department to change reporting of cases to support Trump's public discounting of the threat.  Trump shunned Dr. Anthony Fauci said the country is not turning the corner and life won't return to normal until well into 2021.
Update 9-16-20:  President Trump said the virus would go away due to herd mentality.  “It would go away without the vaccine George,” he said speaking to ABC journalist George Stephanopoulos. “With time it goes away. And you’ll develop like a herd mentality. It’s going to be herd developed, and that’s going to happen. That will all happen.”  It's herd immunity.  
Update 9-18-20:  A staffer for VP Mike Pence said at one Coronavirus Taskforce meeting President Trump said, ‘Maybe this Covid thing is a good thing. I don’t like like shaking hands with people, I don’t have to shake hands with these disgusting people.’ She added, "It was shocking to see the president saying that the virus was a hoax, saying that everything’s OK, when we know that’s not the truth.”
Update 9-26-20:  The White House Coronavirus Task Force has a distressed Dr. Birx and a concerned Dr. Fauci.  Birx is distressed over her minimized role since Trump brought in neuroradiologist Dr. Atlas.  Fauci said "if I were to wave a wand now, it would be to get the entire country uniformly pulling together in a public health way to get these cases down."  Meanwhile Trump holds rallies where people are shoulder to shoulder without facemasks, other than the small group sitting behind the podium.
Update 9-27-20:  Dr. Anthony Fauci made the cover of Time magazine's 100 most influential people edition.  "Dr. Fauci doesn’t sugarcoat his words and refuses to be pressured by politicians. He delivers the truth, as difficult as it may be to hear, earnestly and with one goal: to save lives."  Meawhile President Trump plans to spend $300 million of taxpayer money promoting his coronavirus response.  Over 200,000 Americans have died from COVID-19 with 43,000 new positive cases daily.    Trump paid $750 in federal income taxes in 2016 and 2017.  That won't help pay the Trump team's coronavirus marketing bill.  
Update 9-28-20:  CDC Director Robert Redfield was overheard saying "everything he says is false" in regard to Trump's newest COVID-19 advisor Dr. Scott Atlas.  Trump lies, people die.  The total is over 204,000 U.S. deaths.
Update 10-2-20:  President Trump and First Lady Melania tested positive for COVID-19.   The latest nonsensical statement from White House Spokesman Judd Deere was “The President takes the health and safety of himself and everyone who works in support of him and the American people very seriously.”  Trump's actions hardly support Deere's statement.  President Trump was transferred to Walter Reed Hospital out of an abundance of caution. 
Update 10-4-20:  As the Trump White House became a COVID-19 hot spot President Trump continued to flaunt his government's recommended health precautions.  Trump drew an "immediate rebuke from doctors on Sunday afternoon for an “insane” surprise drive-by visit to supporters outside the Walter Reed military medical center, where the president is being treated for an infection of Covid-19." 
Update 10-5-20:  White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany tested positive for SARS-COV2 but has no symptoms. In March Donald Trump he “didn’t have a lot of time” to meet the top public health expert Dr Anthony Fauci for a briefing about the coronavirus outbreak that was then gathering pace, according to a new recording released by the reporter Bob Woodward.  Early detection of disease is not a sole means of prevention.  White House staff failed to protect the President.  That said there is only one decision maker.  Trump failed to protect himself and the people who work for him.  Two more staffers in the White House Press Office tested positive for the coronavirus.  This evening President Trump returned to the White House where he removed his mask for a gasping photo op.  Image is everything.

Update 10-7-20:  Trump claimed Mission Accomplished on his personal battle with COVID-19.   White House top aide Stephen Miller tested positive for COVID-19.  Health insurer profits doubled during the pandemic.  UnitedHealth Group, reported its profits were $6.7bn in the second quarter of 2020 compared with $3.4bn in last year’s. Anthem’s profits rose to $2.3bn from $1.1bn for the same three-month period in 2019. Humana reported last week its earnings rose to $1.8bn, compared with $940m in 2019.   While millions lost their livelihood billionaires saw their wealth rise 25% during the pandemic.

Update 10-8-20:  The Chief of the White House Security Office has COVID-19 and has been hospitalized since September.  The New England Journal of Medicine published an editorial in which it said the current leadership had “recklessly squandered lives” and “largely claimed immunity for their actions”.  White House Physician Sean Conley issued a letter predicting the President will be able to return to public events on Saturday.  No negative test results have been released by the White House for President Trump.  Predictive medicine is here.

Update 10-11-20:  President Trump declared himself immune from COVID-19 despite the White House refusing to say whether he is yet to test negative from his bout with the disease.  Dr. Anthony Fauci said Trump used his words out of context and without permission in a campaign ad.
A recent nonpartisan study concluded that Trump’s blatant disinformation has been the largest driver of Covid misinformation in the world.
Update 10-13-20:  President Trump insulted Dr. Anthony Fauci while refusing to remove the ad where Fauci's comments were taken out of context.  The Trump team muzzled Fauci for months.  A new documentary reveals the timeline around the Trump administration's colossal failures around the coronavirus.   

Update 10-14-20:  From Fauci to Birx to Redfield, the president’s top health officials appear to be at their wits’ end.  That's the result when one has a narcissist boss.  The Chair and President of ACCESS Health International declared the White House move toward herd immunity is"mass murder" of potentially millions of innocent people.

Update 10-17-20:  Trump and White House medical advisor Scott Atlas downplayed mask wearing.  President Trump completely distorted a CDC report. 

Update 10-19-20:  Trump resorted to calling Dr. Fauci names, yet again.

Update 10-20-20:  Just 16% of Americans say they trust coronavirus information from President Donald Trump a great deal or quite a bit,  U.S. citizens trust Dr. Fauci much more than Trump on the coronavirus.

Update 10-21-20:  Trump downplayed the virus even as the White House expressed concern over spiking cases throughout the country.

Update 10-28-20:  The White House claimed "ending the COVID-19 pandemic" as on of President Trump's accomplishments.  A Coronavirus Task Force member refuted the claim saying "There is no world in which anyone can think that statement is true."  The number of coronavirus cases hit an all time high over the weekend and more than 73,000 new cases were reported the day of the press release highlighting Trump's delusional accolades.

Update 11-1-20:  After the U.S. hit record positive test results Dr. Fauci said the U.S. could not be more poorly positioned as winter approaches.  Trump said he might fire Fauci after the election.

Update 11-4-20:  The U.S. had over 91,500 new positive COVID tests on election day, the second highest total since the pandemic began.

Update 11-5-20:  New cases top 100,000 for the first time.

Update 11-7-20:  White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows tests positive for COVID.  President Elect Joe Biden will announce his Coronavirus Task Force on Monday.  Trump golfed as the U.S had over 130,000 new cases on Friday.

Update 11-11-20:  The U.S. had over 1 million new positive coronavirus tests in the last ten days.  “In the last couple of months you have seen the federal government basically throw in the towel,” Ashish Jha, dean of the Brown University School of Public Health told NBC.  President Trump appeared for the first time in days, laying a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Arlington Cemetary on Veteran's Day.

Update 11-12-20:  Wednesday marked a new record for daily cases with 143,231 new infections and 2,005 deaths in the U.S.

Update 11-14-20:  The US set yet another daily record for new coronavirus cases on Friday, topping 184,000.
Update 11-21-20:  COVID-19 deaths in the U.S. topped 2,000, new cases over 187,000. Trump remains focused on inflicting as much revenge on the Blue team as possible.  The Carlyle Group plans to profit from Trump imposed coronavirus suffering.

Update 11-26-20:  COVID-19 hospitalizations hit a record for the 16th day in a row.  Trump golfed six times since election day.

Update 11-27-20:  President Trump golfed seven times since the election when the U.S. had 9.3 million cases (on election eve).  The U.S. has over 13 million cases today.
Update 11-28-20:  Trump golfed for the third day in a row and for the ninth time since election day.  Yahoo News reported:
Over 30,000 Americans have died from COVID-19 since Election Day, according to data from the World Health Organization. Outgoing-President Donald J. Trump has spent at least nine of those days at his golf course, Trump National Golf Club in northern Virginia, hitting the green.

Update 11-30-20:  Trump's coronavirus thug Dr. Scott Atlas resigned from his position with the White House. 

Update 12-3-20:  The U.S. experienced a record number of coronavirus deaths and hospitalizations

President Trump remains silent on the legions dying under his deluded watch.

Update 12-5-20:  New infections reached a record 227,885 on Friday.  President Trump will hold a rally in Valdosta, Georgia for Republican Senators seeking re-election.  Congress plans to include liability protection for corporations in the latest coronavirus relief package.

Update 12-9-20:  President Trump cheered the fact that 15% of Americans have come down with COVID-19 saying "That's terrific."  Trump attorney Rudy Guliani was hospitalized with COVID-19, while fellow Trump attorney Jenna Ellis tested positive after attending a White House party.  Several months ago Ellis tweeted "there is no pandemic."
Update 12-12-20: U.S. set records for new cases, deaths and hospitalizations.  Record 3,309 deaths.
Update 12-17-20:  Records keep breaking as "the US confirmed 247,403 cases of coronavirus yesterday, and another 3,656 Americans died of the virus yesterday as well.  And this morning’s unemployment report showed new jobless claims rose to 885,000 last week, representing the highest weekly number since September.  It’s clear that many Americans are suffering acutely in the final days of the Trump administration."
"Former Australian prime minister John Howard said Donald Trump penned a lengthy “political suicide note” with his “terrible” handling of the coronavirus pandemic, without which the Republican would have prevailed against Joe Biden."
Update 12-23-20:  WaPo reported on Trump's coronavirus debacle caused by denial, mismanagement and magical thinking.
The catastrophe began with Trump’s initial refusal to take seriously the threat of a once-in-a-century pandemic. But, as officials detailed, it has been compounded over time by a host of damaging presidential traits — his skepticism of science, impatience with health restrictions, prioritization of personal politics over public safety, undisciplined communications, chaotic management style, indulgence of conspiracies, proclivity toward magical thinking, allowance of turf wars and flagrant disregard for the well-being of those around him.

The best chance to control an outbreak is at the very beginning. But U.S. officials squandered that opportunity in February for two key reasons. The first was the CDC’s failure to deploy a working coronavirus test, and the second was the task force’s almost singular focus on repatriating Americans from China and cruise ships, rather than on preparing the United States for an inevitable outbreak. 

Pence's Chief of Staff Marc Short halted Americans from receiving masks from the federal government in a March discussion.  Short tested positive for COVID-19 in October.

Update 1-2-21:  The U.S. passed 20 million coronavirus positive test with nearly 350,000 deaths and over 125,000 patients in the hospital with COVID-19.  NYT reported President Trump wanted the U.S. to go full Mexico on COVID this summer..

Overheard yelling at his son-in-law and senior advisor Jared Kushner on 19 August, Mr Trump reportedly demanded to "do what Mexico does" when it comes to testing for Covid-19.

"They don’t give you a test till you get to the emergency room and you’re vomiting," he said during a gathering of top aides in the Oval Office.

Update 1-6-21:   3,775 Americans died of COVID-19 today, a new record.  Earlier today President Trump incited an attack on the U.S Capital.

Update 1-7-21:  The same day a largely maskless mob attacked the US Capitol, the country recorded nearly 3,900 deaths from coronavirus.  “Folks are gasping for breath. Folks look like they’re drowning when they are in bed right in front of us.”

Update 1-13-21:  The U.S. recorded 4,327 coronavirus deaths on Tuesday.  Over 380,000 Americans died from the pandemic thus far.   The country is now in the most lethal phase of the outbreak since it began. 

Update 1-18-21:  Trump's mismanagement of the coronavirus pandemic has been an unmitigated disaster with the death toll from Covid-19 in the US near surpassing the 405,000 Americans who died in WWII.

Update 1-19-21:   President Elect Biden held a memorial service for the 400,000 Americans killed by the coronavirus to date.  

President Donald Trump has repeatedly contradicted Dr. Fauci's assessment of the pandemic and pushed back against necessary public-health measures."People are tired of hearing Fauci and all these idiots," Trump said in a campaign phone call in October.

Fauci, meanwhile, has scrambled to correct misinformation circulated by the president - including Trump's false claims that the US was "rounding the corner" on the pandemic and that 99% of US cases were "totally harmless."

Trump leaves office tomorrow.   The pandemic cost him re-election.  It remains to be seen the cost of his inciting the Capital insurrection.

Update 1-24-21:  Dr Fauci says pressure from Trump had a 'chilling' effect on White House coronavirus scientists.  Scientists working with the White House felt they could not tell the truth because Trump wanted to project an image of the pandemic that suggested everything was under control and improving.

Update 1-27-21:   Dr Fauci said the former president "very likely" cost American lives by spreading lies and misinformation about the pandemic.  Twitterless Trump is unable to punch back harder, further fueling his rage.

Update 1-29-21:  The U.S. Covid response is ranked among last in the world.

Update 2-4-21:  Trump's pollster did an autopsy on his election defeat.

Trump's disastrous handling of the COVID-19 pandemic was a significant factor in his election defeat, and he also lost significant, crucial support among white voters, and white men in particular.

Update 2-21-21:  Trump's coronavirus failures resulted in 40% more deaths in the U.S. says an expert panel.

Update 2-22-21:  Coronavirus deaths hit 500,000 in the U.S.  Pinhead Matt Pottinger went on Face the Nation to rewrite the Trump team's mask failure.

Update 2-24-21:  Dr. Fauci said political divisiveness contributed to USA's staggering death toll.  Trump changed mask wearing from a public health response to a political statement.

Update 3-11-21:  As Texas Republicans hold mask burning parties one in five Americans lost someone close to them due to COVID-19.  

Update 8-13-21:  Texas suffers under the onslaught of the Delta variant of COVID-19.  Texas Governor Greg Abbott has taken the Trump dice roll with people's lives with his lack of public health action.  Hospitals are filling with COVID patients and people are dying, yet again. 

Update 8-23-21:  Former President Donald Trump held a mask-less rally in Alabama, a state with no empty ICU beds due to being pummeled by the coronavirus.  

Update 12-15-21:  Public health has been parked on the sidelines in Missouri.  Credit Missouri's Attorney General.

Update 12-19-21:  The Trump White House tanked its COVID-19 response for political purposes, confirming its his Hurricane Katrina, Gulf Oil Spew.  

Update 2-16-22:  Yahoo Finance reported "It’s really, massively stupid not to welcome vaccination,” the 98-year-old Charlie Munger said. “We probably have 30% of the people in the country that think vaccination is evil and [are] coming after them like the hobgoblins. It’s not good that there’s that much ignorance’s so much safer to be vaccinated than not vaccinated and so much more considerate to your fellow citizens. It’s a massive kind of ignorance that 30% of the people have, and of course it isn’t good.”