The COVID-19 Chronicles, March 24, 2020

I’m doing whatever I can to abide by the rules laid out to prevent the spread of the Coronavirus, AKA CODIV-19; I’m social distancing, I’m standing and sitting far apart from people, and regularly washing my hands. It does suck, not being out, but I don’t want to burden the hospitals as one more patient.

I always look at the news to find any good news out of this-but the reality is, our commander in chief has abandoned us by his actions. He has told people to get back to their jobs immediately, even as medical professionals-the only ones we should pay attention to-warn that the spread of the COVID-19 has not yet abated; trump is more worried about the stock market and bailing out luxury industries-like his own-than in the health of the American people, not caring if they get sick or die; his own followers, who believe every lies he coughs up, are expendable to him. (https://www.aol.com/article/news/2020/03/24/trump-again-breaks-with-experts-by-calling-for-people-to-go-back-to-work-claims-seniors-will-be-watched-over-protectively-and-lovingly/23960346/?a_dgi=aolshare_facebook&fbclid=IwAR11M7GPyURptlLVyR1V_ZO10syiCdtn6Qk_j2qcjnZ-s40RwZd08blYMGg)

(https://news.yahoo.com/america-not-place-shutdown-trump-222523478.html?soc_src=newsroom&soc_trk=com.apple.UIKit.activity.PostToFacebook&.tsrc=newsroom)

There are always these little nuggets of hope; a few days ago, my neighbor’s son’s girlfriend gave me a big box of groceries-fresh and canned veggies, oranges, pears-God bless them! People are in need this time; a lot of people, who work in restaurants, hotels, airports, etc., have been laid off due to shut-down orders; they need help, so let’s stay in contact with them; phone them and ask how they’re doing and do they need anything.

There are many private individuals, of varying levels of affluence, who have stepped up and donated money and supplies to hospitals and medical staff who are working round the clock to save COVID-19 patients, so let’s support them however we can.

Let’s also commend the state and local officials who have taken charge in this crisis, particularly Governor Andrew Cuomo of New York, who has demanded help for the federal government, which has the greatest amount of power to set up aid for states, and who has called for contributions of surgical masks, and people have stepped up.

The refusal of the “president” to do anything about the pandemic-besides piling on some fabulous lies- is a crime, period, and he needs to be evicted from the White House NOW. Can you imagine Lincoln during the Civil War, and FDR in the Second World War and Great Depression-three of this nation’s greatest crises-acting this way? He had told the governors “you’re on your own” in acquiring needed equipment -ventilators, respirators, hospital beds, etc.-even as the federal government outbid the states for this equipment. Couldn’t he just donate the gear to the states’ hospitals? Has he continued, even in a crisis, his habit of greed and avarice, “Gimme more, gimme more!”?

At ANY moment, trump could implement the Defense Production Act of 2020, authorizing the federal government to order the production of the venerators, respirators, and other machines, and he would come off as a hero; but NOOO, he remains close to our nation’s oligarchy, who are too addicted to the “free market,” even at the nation’s hour of need, to put their greed aside, just once, to fight off this enemy. (https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/22/us/politics/coronavirus-trump-defense-production-act.html?searchResultPosition=1) (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5X0NHWy_Q6I)

And Congress? The Republican leadership-yeah, you, Mitch McConnell!-has tried to push through the Senate the trillion dollar spending bill that would have a little for working people-maybe-but $500 BILLION for businesses, to be handed out at Steve Mnuchin’s and trump’s discretion, with no oversight or transparency. (https://www.esquire.com/news-politics/politics/a31901316/mitch-mcconnell-bailout-bill-steve-mnuchin-500-billion/) The emphasis on the fund has been on such luxury industries as hotels (like trump’s), cruise liners, and airlines, companies that have used the money saved from the 2017 tax bill to buy back stock to raise the value of the remaining stock. You KNOW that trump will divert some of that money to his own properties, like he has held campaign events at Mar-A-Lago and his other clubs. (https://qz.com/1823225/senate-republicans-corporate-rescue-more-like-slush-fund-dems-say/) (https://www.alternet.org/2020/03/trump-refuses-to-promise-his-own-company-wont-get-a-taxpayer-bailout/0) The attitude is that corporations-vast soulless bureaucracies that overpower the state-are more worthy of help than working people who need to pay their bills, feed their families, and live their lives.

Even more insidious, Bill Bar, technically Attorney-General but acting like trump’s personal legal valet-is calling for the power to hold people without trial and suspend the right of Habeas Corpus, and to allow judges to pause trials during “emergencies”.  (https://www.esquire.com/news-politics/politics/a31903481/william-barr-emergency-powers-coronavirus/) (https://thegrio.com/2020/03/22/department-of-justice-emergency-powers/) This is another Republican-plutocratic dream, to repress any popular opposition without consequences-or are they afraid of a popular uprising?

Americans, we DO NOT need to accept this. We deserve a government-particularly a President-who will work of, by, and for the American people, and not be lignin their own pockets and the pockets of already billion-dollar criminals. We deserve and demand action NOW to fight this disease killing our loved ones, and we must organize for that; current communication technology like the internet make that doable during this social-isolation period. Stand fast, stand strong, and stand together, and we’ll beat this.  

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