By the time you read this the American death toll officially attributed to the coronavirus will most likely exceed 90,000. Keep in mind that number is demonstrably too low. A week ago it was 80,000. 36 million Americans have signed up for unemployment benefits in the last eight weeks. If you take metro New York out of the numbers the death toll is rising in America. Trump and his Republican minions are sounding the all clear. That is a lethal combination. Let’s explore.
Last week the Republican majority Wisconsin Supreme Court ruled that Democratic Governor Tony Evers’ stay at home order was unconstitutional. Remember this Court is led by Chief Justice Patience Roggensack of the “those people” mentality. This ruling was the result of a lawsuit filed by Republican Wisconsin State legislators. As of this writing Republican state legislators in other states are following suit.
Thursday the CDC finally published reopening guidelines after massive media pressure led by the Associated Press. The initial guidelines were leaked a few days back and a side by side comparison shows just how far the released version differs from the suppressed one. The final version is more like a list of voluntary suggestions than an edict/guideline. There is overwhelming evidence to suggest the delay/editing was caused by the White House. What are the rush and the concern? We are only losing about 10,000 Americans a week. (Keep in mind the true figure is more like 16,000 to 20,000.)
We see the first movement in what I am calling the over/under number. Last week Republican South Carolina Senator and Trump sycophant Lindsey Graham said that 120,000 deaths would be a “Victory.” (The real number is already in the 144,000 to 180,000 neighborhood.)
It’s not just fatalities; Trump’s blunders and incompetence has finally caught up with him on the economic front. I like to compare the American economy to similar western industrialized countries. They differ in population so percentages account for the differences. Here are the unemployment numbers for Canada, France, Germany and the United Kingdom. They are: Canada 9.8%, France 0.4%, Germany -0.1% and the UK 4.1%. The generally accepted economic definition of full employment is unemployment of 5% or less. By that standard unemployment is non-existent in France, Germany and the UK. The latest reported unemployment rate in America is 14.8%. Because the five countries handle unemployment differently admittedly there is a bit of apples and oranges situation here but in any event this is not a situation where you want to be the leader.
Let’s look back at the last century of American economic history. Republican president Herbert Hoover, largely through inaction and denial, brought us the Great Depression. Fortunately Americans were wise enough to elect Franklin Roosevelt to succeed him and FDR brought us out of it. George W. Bush and his continuation of the Republican deregulation agenda gave us the Great Recession. Americans elected Barack Obama who turned it around rescuing not only the American but the global economy in the process. His, albeit too slow, recovery lasted through the first part of the Trump administration until Trump’s follies and neglect proved too much for the Obama momentum to overcome resulting in the current Trump Depression. Hopefully Americans will have the wisdom to elect the Democratic nominee this fall thereby continuing the recovery end of this cycle.
Trump and his minions are killing both the residents and the economy of America. I renew my call for a warning label on election ballots that read Caution: voting for a Republican may be hazardous to your health. History teaches us that Trump and his enablers will meet their demise; the question is how many innocent Americans they will take with them before they are stopped. Sadly, it appears the only force that can end the carnage is the American electorate; the last resort the Founding Fathers gave us.
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