Trump Goes to Town Hall
The Town Hall hosted by George Stephanopoulos (I always have to copy and paste that name) on Tuesday night will hopefully open eyes for many “undecided” and even Republican voters. It was both hilarious and terrifying that a sizable percentage of the American public still support someone so obviously ill-equipped, so thin-skinned, so wallowing in self-pity, craving of adulation, and even (as many in the mental health profession have stated) a “clear and present danger” 1 to democracy and this nation.
And the Town Hall hopefully illustrated that better, straight from Trump’s own mouth, than we could have otherwise have hoped. Maggie Haberman set the stage: “Trump, by only doing rallies and almost never doing town hall forums, has been insulated from the kind of voter interaction that usually help incumbents as they’re running. But he craves adulation and many of his aides enable it.”2 So we can expect that a crowd of “undecided” voters in Pennsylvania, a state hit unreasonably hard by the Trump Administration’s policies (with one noteworthy exception3) and (lack of) pandemic response had an outcome he did not see coming: people were unhappy with him, especially some former avid supporters.
Stephanopoulos, within just a few seconds of opening the show, let the first voter ask their question.
PAUL TUBIANA: Mr. President, I voted for you in 2016. I’m a conservative, pro-life and diabetic. I’ve had to dodge people who don’t care about social distancing and wearing face masks.
I thought you were doing a good job with the pandemic response until about May 1st. Then you took your foot off the gas pedal. Why did you throw vulnerable people like me under the bus?
TRUMP: Well, we really didn’t, Paul. We’ve worked very hard on the pandemic. We’ve worked very hard. It came off from China. They should have never let it happen.
Bad start for Trump. Yes, it did come from China, and a virus as contagious as Covid-19 (a.k.a. severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2)) would likely make its way to our shores. But how we as a nation and our nation itself respond are the primary concern here, with either a few hundred or a couple thousand people dying, or tens and hundreds of thousands. Delusional Donald wants to blame China for something which we lost control of under his watch, and because of his response to warnings (informing Alex Azar in January that he was an alarmist), failure to use previously established structures and ignoring the “playbook” which was in place for occasions such as this (which I document fully here: ).
In just several months, 66 TIMES the number of dead from the 9/11 attacks have died from a novel virus we had the chance – months in advance – of being able to mitigate on at least some scale. Trump’s horrible blaming of China for our woes illustrates just how unworthy of the job he is. It does, however, fit his pattern. In mid-March, when asked about his role in the burgeoning disaster stressing out our healthcare system and body bags piling up in refrigerated trailers, he stated (and video exists for anyone who doesn’t believe he would say such a thing) “I don’t take responsibility at all.”
And yet people still want to support him? WTF?
He continued with his answer:
TRUMP (cont’d): And if you looked at what we’ve done with ventilators, and now, frankly, with vaccines –we’re very close to having the vaccine.
Once again he shows us he has difficulty putting together two sentences or making at least one coherent thought. Unbelievably, this is something Trump has (again, stumbling with clarity) accused his challenger Joe Biden of. Having difficulty speaking in clear form while accusing Biden of having difficulty speaking. What a fucking scumbag. See the video here: https://vm.tiktok.com/ZMJDCJLo/.
The next day, top CDC public health officials gave a more accurate assessment of the timeline: most likely by the end of March, 2021.
Then, continuing in his true form, he continued to shirk responsibility by blaming the administration which has not been in charge for nearly 4 years:
TRUMP (cont’d): If you want to know the truth, the previous administration would have taken perhaps years to have a vaccine because of the FDA and all the approvals, and we’re within weeks of getting it. You know, could be three weeks, four weeks, but we think we have it. Johnson & Johnson, Pfizer, we have great companies and they’re very, very close.
First, because the “previous administration” actually utilized science as opposed to wishful thinking, 1) the coming vaccine would have roughly the same timeline, and 2) he shows his lack of understanding, once again, of how things work. The trial protocols which are in place, and do certainly slow down the approval before mass release of any vaccine, are there to guarantee a very high degree of public safety. Unfortunately, there are several layers of evidence that these protocols are being played with for political purposes (such as one Trump sycophant, Michael Caputo — the Assistant Secretary of Health and Human Services for Public Affairs — stating there’s “sedition” at the CDC because they wouldn’t stoop to changes which would benefit the appearance of Trump’s response to the pandemic4).
The rest of the Town Hall (here’s the video (it’s also on Hulu) || here’s the transcript) gives an enlightening insight into Trump’s derangement. His 4-Pinocchio lies are so plentiful, I can only drop a few here. Each of these are howlers:
>>“If you look at what we’ve done compared to other countries, with the excess mortality, the excess mortality rate, we’ve done very, very well.”
>>“We were short on ventilators because the cupboards were bare when we took it over.”
>>“We’re very close to having the vaccine.” As noted above, it’s still almost 6 months away.
>>“We have 20 percent of the cases [in the world] because of the fact that we do much more testing. If we wouldn’t do testing, you wouldn’t have cases. You would have very few cases.”
>>“So I didn’t say anything bad about President Xi initially, because nobody knew much about the disease. Nobody knew the seniors are susceptible. They thought people would be susceptible — but not just — you know the seniors are really a very, very endangered group of people, especially if they have problems with hearts or diabetes or any of that.” Trump admitted on Feb. 7 to Bob Woodward in taped interviews that he knew then how deadly this virus would be. Other evidence tells us several advisors warned him as early as mid-Jan.
>>“Well, I didn’t downplay it.” Meaning the deadliness of Covind-19. Yes, he actually said this after tapes came out showing he did. Fuckbag. Scumbucket.
>“The fact is, we created the greatest economy in the history of the world.” Another Fuckublican lie. Glenn Kessler gives us a more reasoned assessment: ‘Before the coronavirus pandemic shuttered businesses and sent unemployment soaring, the president could certainly brag about the state of the economy in his first three years as president. But he ran into trouble when he made a play for the history books to say it was the best economy in U.S. history. By just about any important measure, the economy under Trump did not do as well as it did under Presidents Dwight D. Eisenhower, Lyndon B. Johnson or Bill Clinton. The gross domestic product grew at an annual rate of 2.3 percent in 2019, slipping from 2.9 percent in 2018 and 2.4 percent in 2017. But in 1997, 1998 and 1999, GDP grew 4.5 percent, 4.5 percent and 4.7 percent, respectively. Yet even that period paled in comparison against the 1950s and 1960s. Growth between 1962 and 1966 ranged from 4.4 percent to 6.6 percent. In postwar 1950 and 1951, it was 8.7 percent and 8 percent, respectively. Meanwhile, the unemployment rate reached a low of 3.5 percent under Trump, but it dipped as low as 2.5 percent in 1953.’
It is an old canard that politics and lies are comfortable bedmates. Yet Trump and his administration seem to be perfecting it to an art form. According to a 3 year old article in ‘Scientific American’, there may be something we can do about the problem5. True, something can be done about politicians at all levels using their office as a personal ATM, lying to their constituency, creating false divisions among the populous and enabling/enacting short sighted and short-term policies which help solidify their base; instead of long-term solutions which are better overall, but certainly less popular.
But that takes:
- a nationwide commitment to Civics education
- an automatic registration to vote as soon as someone turns 18 and applies for their (let’s not forget state mandated) driver’s license or ID card; this is called opt-out voting, where the citizenry is automatically registered (saving BILLION$ nationwide), and you opt-out by not voting
- a guarantee that each and every American can vote in their resident county or by absentee ballot for each and every election, and that any attempt to miss-inform, harass, intimidate or otherwise attempt to suppress any legal citizen’s right to vote shall be considered a felony of the highest offense — hell, let’s just call it treason
- big money must be taken out of politics, starting with the horrid Supreme Court decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, 558 U.S. 310 (2010)
Yet, I fear, none of this will ever happen, as American complacency to positive, progressive and unifying political action is in the very air we all breathe.
For more information on some of the issues covered here, as well as the references below, see:
Agree? Disagree? Have a different perspective? Leave a comment below.
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- See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Dangerous_Case_of_Donald_Trump#:~:text=The%20Dangerous%20Case%20of%20Donald%20Trump%20is%20a%202017%20book,to%20the%20%22nation%20and%20individual ↵
- https://twitter.com/maggieNYT/status/1306045321638801411?campaign_id=9&emc=edit_nn_20200916&instance_id=22233&nl=the-morning®i_id=98451622§ion_index=1§ion_name=big_story&segment_id=38240&te=1&user_id=5b91f7db5fe7a1070a332e5d431c7a12 ↵
- https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2020/09/07/superfund-activists-donald-trump-minden-wv-400921 ↵
- See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Caputo#Trump_administration and for more detail https://www.politico.com/news/2020/09/11/exclusive-trump-officials-interfered-with-cdc-reports-on-covid-19-412809 ↵
- https://blogs.scientificamerican.com/observations/how-to-address-the-epidemic-of-lies-in-politics/ ↵