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Thu Apr 30, 2020, 10:51 AM

We Are Living In A Failed State

https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2020/06/underlying-conditions/610261/

When the virus came here, it found a country with serious underlying conditions, and it exploited them ruthlessly. Chronic ills—a corrupt political class, a sclerotic bureaucracy, a heartless economy, a divided and distracted public—had gone untreated for years. We had learned to live, uncomfortably, with the symptoms. It took the scale and intimacy of a pandemic to expose their severity—to shock Americans with the recognition that we are in the high-risk category.


The crisis demanded a response that was swift, rational, and collective. The United States reacted instead like Pakistan or Belarus—like a country with shoddy infrastructure and a dysfunctional government whose leaders were too corrupt or stupid to head off mass suffering. The administration squandered two irretrievable months to prepare. From the president came willful blindness, scapegoating, boasts, and lies. From his mouthpieces, conspiracy theories and miracle cures. A few senators and corporate executives acted quickly—not to prevent the coming disaster, but to profit from it. When a government doctor tried to warn the public of the danger, the White House took the mic and politicized the message.

Every morning in the endless month of March, Americans woke up to find themselves citizens of a failed state. With no national plan—no coherent instructions at all—families, schools, and offices were left to decide on their own whether to shut down and take shelter. When test kits, masks, gowns, and ventilators were found to be in desperately short supply, governors pleaded for them from the White House, which stalled, then called on private enterprise, which couldn’t deliver. States and cities were forced into bidding wars that left them prey to price gouging and corporate profiteering. Civilians took out their sewing machines to try to keep ill-equipped hospital workers healthy and their patients alive. Russia, Taiwan, and the United Nations sent humanitarian aid to the world’s richest power—a beggar nation in utter chaos.

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Response to Arkansas Granny (Original post)

Thu Apr 30, 2020, 11:13 AM

1. Elections have consequences. I'll take Obama's handling of the ebola crisis over...

the stupid, orange blob's handling of the coronavirus any day.

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Response to brush (Reply #1)

Thu Apr 30, 2020, 11:21 AM

2. While that is definitely true, the issues are bigger and started well before Obama

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Response to Merlot (Reply #2)

Thu Apr 30, 2020, 11:25 AM

3. O put a response mechanism in place and left a playbook for pandemic response.

trump stupidly dismantled or reassigned anything he could that Obama created. This could have been significantly lessened with competent WH leadership.

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Response to brush (Reply #3)

Thu Apr 30, 2020, 11:26 AM

4. Yes, we all know that. The gist of the Atlantic article: not about what Obama could have done.

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Response to Arkansas Granny (Original post)

Thu Apr 30, 2020, 11:28 AM

5. Thanks for posting this.

A very sobering read.

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