President Trump on Sunday night said that the government would reassess the recommended period for keeping businesses shut and millions of workers at home after this week, amid millions of job losses caused by the efforts to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus.
“WE CANNOT LET THE CURE BE WORSE THAN THE PROBLEM ITSELF,” Mr. Trump tweeted in all capital letters shortly before midnight. “AT THE END OF THE 15 DAY PERIOD, WE WILL MAKE A DECISION AS TO WHICH WAY WE WANT TO GO!”
Officials have said that the initial 15-day period for social distancing — limiting close contact between people by banning gatherings, closing schools and offices, encouraging remote work and urging people to maintain a six-foot distance from one another — is vital to slowing the spread of the virus, for which more than 30,000 people in the United States have tested positive. The 15-day period would end Monday.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, an infectious diseases expert and a member of the White House coronavirus task force, has said in interviews that he believed that it would take several more weeks until people can start going about their lives in a more normal fashion. Other infectious disease experts suggest even harsher measures than social distancing are required to truly beat back the outbreaks in the United States.
Wake up Maggie I think I got something to say to you:
But at the White House, in recent days, there has been a growing sentiment that medical experts were allowed to set policy that has hurt the economy, and there has been a push to find ways to let people start returning to work. Some Republican lawmakers have also pleaded with the White House to find ways to restart the economy, as financial markets continue to slide and job losses for April could be in the millions.
What seems likely to happen at this point is that Trump, who has the attention span of a fruit fly and the patience of a tired and hungry toddler, will decide that the stock market has gone down far enough and that he should listen to whatever techbro nonsense Jared just read on the Internet, rather than the so-called experts like Fauci et. al.
We’ll then have a devolution into a kind of federalist free-for-all, with highly urbanized mostly blue states desperately trying to maintain some sort of real restrictions, while out in Jesusland people stock up on guns and ammo and dose themselves with whatever quack cures Fox News and the rest of the Scream Machine happen to be hawking at the moment.
This is a worst of both worlds response: You crash the economy, but you half-ass the restrictions, so you don’t actually stop the pandemic, as China and South Korea and some other East Asian countries seem to have done.