From the Washington Post, by Alexandra Petri:
From The New Yorker:
“We remind everyone that the first defense against this outbreak is vigorous hand washing and repentance.”
From Esquire, by Charles P. Pierce:
If it is possible to avert a public health crisis by inoculating the population with sheer incoherence, we’re all going to be healthy as horses over the next several months.
He’s not ready, of course. He’s shredded the nation’s public health institutions. He’s populated his administration* with sycophantic know-nothings. He himself doesn’t know anything about anything. He looked incredibly relieved during Wednesday’s press conference when somebody asked him about the effect of a coronavirus pandemic on the stock market. He doesn’t know anything about anything there, either, but at least, in that area, he’s more accustomed to faking it.
The sad part was watching all of these accomplished, brilliant people, the people who have dedicated their lives to solving epidemic diseases at the highest level, standing there behind a vulgar talking yam, praising him for his brilliant work thus far, and listening to him hand the country’s response over to Vice President Mike Pence, who is just as ignorant as the president* but with that extra Jesus-y sheen on his ignorance. This is the same Pence who, while governor of Indiana, once oversaw an HIV epidemic in a small town in part because of his animus to Planned Parenthood, and who wrote newspaper columns denigrating the connection between cigarettes and respiratory diseases.
Like so much else about this administration*, the press conference was the apotheosis of over 40 years of Republican governing philosophy: the neglect of science in every field from climate to the human reproductive system, the rejection of empiricism in every field from economics to public health, the deliberately cultivated incompetence within the institutions of government and without. The distance between James Watt and Mike Pence is so small, it’s hardly worth measuring. The press conference was nothing more than what we’ve come to expect from Republican presidents, albeit more of a tussle with the English language than even those engaged in by George W. Bush. The coronavirus may fade. The prion disease, which is just as contagious, rages on.
President Trump speaking at the March for Life anti-abortion rally:
“All of us here today understand an eternal truth — every child is a precious and sacred gift from God,” Trump said. “Together, we must protect, cherish and defend the dignity and the sanctity of every human life.”
From the New York Times:
Demonstrators flooded the National Mall on Friday morning in anticipation of a historic moment for the anti-abortion movement: the first sitting president to address the annual March for Life in person.
Roy Hagemyer, 62, a pastor from Mohave Valley, Arizona, who was standing at the corner of 15th Street and Constitution Avenue giving out signs reading “Human Rights begin in the Womb,” could barely contain his excitement ahead of Mr. Trump’s speech.
“The president is going to speak here today, the first time in history,” he said, smiling. “That really puts a lot of horse power behind our movement.”
Mr. Hagemyer said Mr. Trump’s support makes him even more optimistic about the future. “I firmly believe that in my lifetime we will see Roe V. Wade overturned,” he said referring to the landmark 1973 Supreme Court ruling that extended federal protections to abortion. “The tide is turning. People are starting to realize abortion is not something we should be doing.”
From the Washington Post, by Ann Telnaes:
From The New Yorker:
“So, there’s a rumor one of you is just a thousand hamsters in a horse costume.”
President Donald Trump on Friday used a tweet to order U.S. companies to find an alternative to doing business with China, as he lashed out at Beijing’s latest round of retaliatory tariffs and pledged to respond to them later in the day.
“The vast amounts of money made and stolen by China from the United States, year after year, for decades, will and must STOP. Our great American companies are hereby ordered to immediately start looking for an alternative to China, including bringing your companies HOME and making your products in the USA.”
So much winning…
From the Washington Post, by Alexandra Petri:
The Amazon is burning. Darkness covers São Paulo at noon. The economy is wilting. The Federal Reserve chair dreamed of seven lean oxen, and when he awakened, all his yield curves had inverted. Sean Spicer is on “Dancing With The Stars.” Do not think that these are signs that we drift, alone, through an indifferent universe, where everything is absurd and nothing is funny. Do not mistake these omens. All has been revealed.
*stone tablets containing decades of laws crash down from on high and shatter*
Glorious news, everyone! Donald Trump is God! Everything makes sense now, and the final purpose of all things is at last clear. Donald Trump on Wednesday proudly quoted a messenger who said he was “the second coming of God,” and he described himself as “the chosen one,” looking up at the sky. As I said, wonderful, good, normal news!
*Donald Trump’s entire staff transforms into snakes*
How did we not recognize it before? He can multiply crowds at a wish. He can make the night day and the day night. He can make Melania Trump appear in a window where she is not. He can make friends enemies and enemies, friends. He can stare unblinkingly into the sun (at an eclipse, no less), for the sun shall not strike him by day. He turned Chris Christie into a pillar of salt; his arrival was heralded by a burned-out Bush. With Trump, all things are possible. Don’t give him a baby to cut in half; he’ll do it.
*water across the nation transforms into Trump-branded wine*
Hearken, nonbelievers! Of course Donald Trump is the Chosen One — all relevant tropes apply. He arrived on the scene with no particular expertise, and suddenly, he was in charge of everything, even though there was a woman right there who had been preparing for the same thing for decades. He just stepped into office, and suddenly he could do anything he set his mind to. He can wield nuclear power, melt ice that has been there for decades, and he almost bought Greenland.
*Donald Trump vanishes into the wilderness for 40 days and 40 nights; he is golfing*
Also, he is the King of Israel. Great! And he brought Christmas back. Even better! That was just the first sign of many signs that he would perform. He made the lion lie down with the lamb, and then he stood with the lion after the resulting incident. He healed the nation’s wounds (or will, once he gets a magic and only somewhat habit-forming spray from Johnson and Johnson), and you should see what he can do with the jawbone of an ass! And he suffered the little children to come unto him. At any rate, they suffered.
*Trump smites a rock with his rod, and lead-tainted water starts pouring from it*
No wonder evangelical voters have stuck with him so much. He is literally the Messiah! Which is great! Just great, just absolutely wonderful, and a HIGHLY normal thing for a president to say! Definitely not Fake News, definitely the Good News.
Just super, absolutely, terrifically, the most reassuring news ever! I for one am EXTREMELY REASSURED.
*a great beast with 10 horns and seven heads emerges from the abyss*