“To cannon,” Napoleon once said, “all men are equal.” It is even truer for coronavirus, because one cannot aim a coronavirus. Coronavirus proved to be no respecter of blue or red. But it is a respecter of social distancing, mask wearing and hand washing. So it’s no coincidence that because more Democrats than Republicans do those things, more Republicans and fewer Democrats get sick. Such was the consequence of politicizing the pandemic. It may be the case that that’s all the last administration did about it.
It turns out that we really did need an unimpeachable source (if you’ll pardon the expression) to tell us the truth about what the last administration was doing about coronavirus. It also turns out they lied to us. The outgoing gaggle of cretins were doing even less than we dared to suspect. When the Chief Cretin said “We’ve done a tremendous job, tremendous,” they had in fact been doing almost nothing. Only fools are surprised.
“What we’re inheriting is so much worse than we could have imagined,” said President Joe Biden’s coronavirus response coordinator Jeff Zients in a call with reporters. Another official said: “There is nothing for us to rework. We are going to have to build everything from scratch.”
Mike Pence was put in charge of the previous coronavirus task force and, for bad measure, Jared Kushner was (bafflingly) put in charge of a separate uncoordinated coronavirus task force. Turns out neither man did much of anything. This criminal negligence that has caused (as I write this) 427,635 American deaths, may not merely spell the end of both their political careers, it might see them both safely in prison.
It is within the remit of every district attorney in the United States to file criminal charges against the ex-vice president and the ex-president’s son-in-law for criminal negligence if any of their constituents died of coronavirus. They can also charge the disgraced ex-president as a co-conspirator. I don’t doubt that a lot of other criminal charges are looming for a lot of other members of the pirate ship known as the Trump administration.
The seven day average death rate for COVID-19 remains over 3,000 per day. This is the mess we inherited. Real President Biden has implemented a wartime strategy — in lieu of the last administration’s fake wartime strategy — in order to combat this daily 9/11-sized catastrophe.
It is a juggernaut with so much momentum that, by the end of February, half a million Americans will have died. There is little or nothing that the Real President can do about that. Death is what you might call the ultimate trailing indicator of coronavirus. Those deaths were foreordained long before the cretin who previously infested the White House was whipped from office by a disgusted constituency.
But our Real President can slow it down and eventually stop it. That, in fact, is what he has begun. The Real President Joseph R. Biden has invoked the Defense Production Act (DPA). The DPA enables the government to direct private companies to produce goods for national needs at the same time that it provides a market for the goods the companies produce. Biden has demanded more testing, faster vaccinations, and more funding for state and local governments to enable them to provide more vaccination sites. Our Actual President has announced he hopes to vaccinate 100 million Americans by the 20th of April 2021. And, as ever, ladies and gentlemen, brothers and sisters, comrades and friends, stay safe.
Robert Harrington is an American expat living in Britain. He is a portrait painter.