With that being said, I am extremely relieved that the president says things are under control with this coronavirus. “There’s a very good chance you’re not going to die,” he said during his trip to India.
Good! Good! Reassuring! I’m reassured!
If there is one thing I know about the Trump administration, it is that it is full of skillful people who take their jobs seriously. They are well-staffed, and the fact that one of the president’s new top officials in his Presidential Personnel Office is a 23-year-old George Washington University senior is not symptomatic of a larger trend. Also, no one is symptomatic of anything! I apologize for that word choice.
The person initially kind-of in charge of the response — who happened also to run the Department of Health and Human Services — did very well during the stolen moments he patched together from his Cabinet day job. Look, if you are passionate about something, you make time for it, whether it’s theater or coordinating the nation’s interagency response to a global threat. It sounds like he was passionate.
At a news conference Wednesday, the president announced that the president was doing a wonderful job handling the coronavirus, a statement that filled me with confidence, as it came from the president himself. The vice president and HHS head also announced that the president was doing a great job, and the president, at that point, officially put the vice president in charge of coordinating the outbreak response.
Who better to lead this mission than Mike Pence? Someone who did not exacerbate the severity of a deadly HIV outbreak in his state with his slowness as governor in approving a needle-exchange program? (No, that question was meant to be rhetorical. I am sure he gets it now, and besides, as vice president, he has nothing else on his plate.) What’s best is that even if he gets overwhelmed, Jared Kushner is there, a man who can be counted upon to provide a solution to any issue, no matter how complicated.
“I want you to understand something that shocked me when I saw it,” the president said at Wednesday’s news conference. “… I think most people are amazed to hear it. The flu in our country kills from 25,000 people to 69,000 people a year. That was shocking to me.“ This is just a sign of how the president is working carefully to understand the issue! Once his great brain is applied to it, we need fear nothing. Also, we do not need to worry about the cuts to health programs his budget was asking for; we can always hire more doctors! Once we hire them, it will turn out that they have been working on the virus for months and developing expertise in combating it. Passionately, in their spare time, the same way the response was being coordinated.
These, in short, are exactly the sort of people you want to be in charge during a real crisis. Sure, during more relaxed moments, the administration displays all the competence of a dog on its hind legs attempting to make an omelet but, in moments where the stakes are high, it is sure to rise to the occasion. All it needs is more pressure.
It is good to know that no matter what is happening, the coronavirus and its dangerous cousin, the caronavirus, are under control. (I did not know about the caronavirus until the president tweeted about it, but that just shows how much better information he has than I have.) In the meantime, I believe, I will just sit here confidently, feeling safe.
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