What Should He Have Done?

Yooper

Up. Identified. Lase. Fire. On the way.
PREMO Member
I'm gonna take a chance. I didn't see a thread started on this subject/idea, so here goes....

What I'm hoping for is a civil discussion where ideas are batted back and forth in a respectful manner about courses of action. But I don't think I'm gonna get much feedback. In the hope that I am wrong, here's the set-up:

I was reading an article this a.m. on NRO by V.D. Hanson and it got me thinking about strategy formulation. Got me wondering a bit about the administration's response and peoples' takes on it. Then one forum member made the point "If we had a competent president who had a strong response...."

It's a given that the folks who are not in power (that is, these folks and their "party" doesn't control the presidency/governorships, aren't the CEOs, aren't the final decision makers, etc.) will always claim (at the time, in hindsight, sometimes correctly, sometimes incorrectly) that that leader(ship) in power has acted in an incompetent manner (be it specific actions, timeliness, etc.). This time around it's Trump and COVID-19, but we can pick just about any crisis (one of my favorites is criticism (Congressional and otherwise) of Washington's leadership of the Continental Army during the Revolution).

So, let's engage. What would have been the "strong response" that would have gained national consensus? Toss out your ideas and rationale. Invite (respectful) feedback.

My sense is that few will bite on this/my invitation. Because most (and I count myself as one of the "most" more often than I would like to admit) will find it far easier to criticize. To be a Statler or Waldorf (Muppets reference). To be the Monday Morning Quarterback. To be the backseat driver. To be the "I told you so" person.

I have some "national level" experience with this. When I was a student at the Army War College we conducted several table-top exercises over the academic year that dealt with national-level problems (one of which had to do with China causing mischief not just regionally, but globally). Not only were the students centrally involved the War College invited participants from State, other USG entities, diplomats from embassies in DC, corporation CEOs, bankers and brokers, etc. So what did we students learn? We learned (painfully) that it is truly difficult to coordinate a response that's a) really good (hence, why Patton was famous for saying that he would always take a good plan now rather than a perfect plan never implemented) and b) satisfies a broad swath of stakeholders.

The main reason is "equities" (I don't mean equities as far as finances go, but financial equities can be one of the things some stakeholders seek to protect). "Equities" are THE reason why coordinated, efficient responses to anything don't happen until things get really bad. Bean counters want to conserve money, military leaders want more troops and better equipment, diplomats (among others) don't want the boat rocked, private corporations complain they are being squeezed out or want more money or can't complete the contract they bid on on-time, foreign governments' interests don't align with ours, out-of-power political parties want to score points, the global financial situation won't cooperate, news media has stories to write and careers to improve, "enemies" have (and exercise) a vote, etc. and so forth.

So my take is that if the COVID-19 event stays more "perceptionally scary" than "death rate scary" we going to continue to see the squabbling we see here on the forum, on TV, in social media, etc. Because "equities." If this COVID-19 scare turns Captain Trips-like then watch the squabbling lessen as the death count rises. (Certainly hoping for the former (however annoying) than the latter.)

So have at it. What should Trump have done? What would have been the "strong response"? Make your case. Engage in civil dialog. Try to listen, try to learn.

But as I said, I don't think there will be many takers (if any). Because, as I said, it's easier (and more gratifying) to bitch than to constructively resolve.

Prove me wrong. I think if one is open to the dynamics in play with these sorts of things one will find out that while courses of action (COAs) may not be optimal through the lens of various stakeholder stovepipes, it's generally the case that the COA actually embarked upon is the COA that satisfies the majority of stakeholders. That's the nature of non-authoritarian organizations.....

I have some other thoughts, but I'll "check fire" for now (to see if anyone else joins the conversation).

Keep calm and carry on!

Cheers.

--- End of line (MCP)
 
Reactions: BOP

TPD

the poor dad
I thought the press conference he did on February 29th before attending CPAC was effective. Maybe one thing he could have done differently was appoint a medical person instead of Pence as the "team leader" - surgeon general maybe.

Maybe he could have come to the podium every evening at 9pm to do a live update and give the latest numbers, but reassure the American people that this is no worse than the flu. Keep hitting on this point with the numbers - this is no worse than the flu so don't panic! It's still not too late to do the daily live updates on television.

During these updates, Trump needs to remind us why we need to make more stuff in the USA. Because of situations like this, China is eating our lunch - holding back our medicine and cutting off our supply of toilet paper. This to me is big news - keep hitting on this point, on why we can't depend on China for anything!

Then lead by example - continue with the rallys and meeting heads of state. Take a Made in the USA factory tour every week. Take the CV test everyday during your live update and show the results.

Otherwise, I'm not sure what else the people expect from him. We have no vaccine for this. We are a free nation so I don't think we can shut down the whole country. And if it gets to that, I think you will see the well regulated militia out in force.
 

Yooper

Up. Identified. Lase. Fire. On the way.
PREMO Member
We are a free nation so I don't think we can shut down the whole country.
Nice post. Thanks for helping to start the conversation. I will probably come back to your post at some point (because there are quite a few good points worth addressing), but at this point I wanted to highlight what I snipped from your reply.

In a word, exactly. We are a free nation of people who often and in great numbers don't feel the rules apply to them. So, I agree, if for only this reason, we wouldn't be able to shut down the country. There is no way what the Chinese did in Wuhan (and other cities/regions) would be agreed with here. Many of the same people who feel the administration isn't doing enough would see a response such as Wuhan as over-the-top. So something in the middle.... But what?

Anyway, this is exactly what I mean about "equities." All the various stakeholders each have their own interests to protect and since interests vary (often with little overlap) we get friction. And friction is the enemy to efficient solutions.

The final conversation between The Architect and The Oracle in the third Matrix movie demonstrates exactly the problem with friction: in a system containing numerous, independent operators one will never find consensus. The Architect was NEVER going to get the environment he desired because the initial operating parameters didn't allow for it.

All of these independent operators/stakeholders see their own opinions as "the signal." But what they fail to realize (or don't care) is that others will see those opinions as "the noise." And vice versa (referring to Nate Silver's book).

So, yup, I agree with you. That folks expect more of the administration is one thing; whether the system allows for the administration to do those things is an entirely different question. The discussion is in this "delta."

Again, thanks for posting/replying.

--- End of line (MCP)
 

WingsOfGold

Well-Known Member
Hindsight being 20/20... shut down borders coming and going if one expects to return. He did this early on with China and the usual suspects called him racist, may they be the first to drop.
 

Stjohns3269

Active Member
He shouldn’t have spent the last three years making the media the enemy of the people. Once you erode public trust in somethingit is difficult to get people to turn around and trust that thing.

He should not have said

“ this is their new hoax”

“ I didn’t know people died from the Flu”

“ can’t we just use the flu vaccine”

He should have immediately taken the suggestion of the CDC to close schools and to suggest the elderly not travel. Instead he over rode their suggestions. Social distancing should have happened weeks ago.

he should have had the surgeon general on television explaining the virology and what to do to avoid spreading it. Instead he put Pence who admittedly doesn’t believe in evolution in charge of the response.

basically what he did last night should have been done three weeks prior. Instead of hoping to bully the markets into stabilizing and hoping to ignore what was going on and it going away.
 

Yooper

Up. Identified. Lase. Fire. On the way.
PREMO Member
He shouldn’t have....
I don't think the media/trust point works. WRT the media aspect, my take is exactly the opposite; the media chose him as an enemy first. We see this differently. And that leads to my second point: for every person who dislikes Trump there's another who likes/supports him. So trust depends on where one starts out.

He should have immediately taken the suggestion of the CDC to close schools and to suggest the elderly not travel. Instead he over rode their suggestions. Social distancing should have happened weeks ago.
Could not the schools closed on their own? Aren't there experts in these places who could have made those decisions? WRT the elderly, he could suggest, but a suggestion has no force. And no one needs an order to social distance (or wash hands, etc.).

he should have had the surgeon general on television explaining the virology and what to do to avoid spreading it. Instead he put Pence who admittedly doesn’t believe in evolution in charge of the response.
Two points. First, how would the SG doing what you wanted changed anything? Do we have any precedent that says it would have helped? I don't know (which is why I'm asking). Regardless, we have had numerous folks explaining the virus so not sure it would have made any difference. Second, your comment about Pence is a political comment. So you lose any possible future allies. Had you left the comment with saying something along the lines of "Pence was the wrong person to head up a federal task force," then we can talk further. I would have asked you how you would have comprised the TF. But making a snarky comment about Pence and evolution ended the discussion.

basically what he did last night should have been done three weeks prior. Instead of hoping to bully the markets into stabilizing and hoping to ignore what was going on and it going away.
I'm generally not big on comments that hinge on hindsight because it assumes the situation today was the same as it was "three weeks prior." But they're not. So what you're saying is that three weeks ago he should have restricted travel, etc.? You may be correct, but try to answer honestly..., how do you think that would have been received? I ask because human beings are famous for saying "If we had only done that 'x days/weeks/months' before." But we don't because that's not how people work.

But point taken. How does what "should have been done three weeks prior" translate into lessons learned for the future? That's usually the sticking point. In the military we train as we're going to fight, but everyday folks aren't in the military (most don't seem to want to be) and wouldn't put up with that kind of a regimented lifestyle.

That's another reason why I started this thread. If we don't learn from what we're doing now how do we do "it" better next time? The essence of the military's After-Action Report (AAR).

Thank you for the comments. Whether I agreed or not, all got me to ponder.

--- End of line (MCP)
 

Hijinx

Well-Known Member
If you are looking for consensus in this politically charged atmosphere where division is the name of the game and blame for that divisiveness depends on who is speking at the time you are dreaming.
There is nothing that Trump can do that will satisfy the democrats. NOTHING.

Now as for what he should do. Pretty much exactly what he has done. Stop people coming from countries that are having the most prevalence of the flu from coming here.,Keep us informed of what is going on. If there were only some way of stopping the Free Press in this country from playing politics with this thing it would be great, but alas that won't happen.

We have to stop quarantining first responders when they respond to a Corona Virus patient.
The First responder are in grave danger of this flu, especially volunteers , many of which are older and more susceptible to it.
If the flu becomes pandemic and we quarantine Doctors Nurses Firefighters and Ambulance people who is going to be there to pick up the ill?
Will everyone who happens to be in the Emergency room be quarantined? How can the nurses go from one patient to another and be decontaminted between rooms.
Ambulances have to be de contaminated do the people who rode it and may have been contaminated have to de contaminate it.?
If other do it are they contaminated?

Lots of questions.
 

Stjohns3269

Active Member
I don't think the media/trust point works. WRT the media aspect, my take is exactly the opposite; the media chose him as an enemy first. We see this differently. And that leads to my second point: for every person who dislikes Trump there's another who likes/supports him. So trust depends on where one starts out.


Could not the schools closed on their own? Aren't there experts in these places who could have made those decisions? WRT the elderly, he could suggest, but a suggestion has no force. And no one needs an order to social distance (or wash hands, etc.).


Two points. First, how would the SG doing what you wanted changed anything? Do we have any precedent that says it would have helped? I don't know (which is why I'm asking). Regardless, we have had numerous folks explaining the virus so not sure it would have made any difference. Second, your comment about Pence is a political comment. So you lose any possible future allies. Had you left the comment with saying something along the lines of "Pence was the wrong person to head up a federal task force," then we can talk further. I would have asked you how you would have comprised the TF. But making a snarky comment about Pence and evolution ended the discussion.


I'm generally not big on comments that hinge on hindsight because it assumes the situation today was the same as it was "three weeks prior." But they're not. So what you're saying is that three weeks ago he should have restricted travel, etc.? You may be correct, but try to answer honestly..., how do you think that would have been received? I ask because human beings are famous for saying "If we had only done that 'x days/weeks/months' before." But we don't because that's not how people work.

But point taken. How does what "should have been done three weeks prior" translate into lessons learned for the future? That's usually the sticking point. In the military we train as we're going to fight, but everyday folks aren't in the military (most don't seem to want to be) and wouldn't put up with that kind of a regimented lifestyle.

That's another reason why I started this thread. If we don't learn from what we're doing now how do we do "it" better next time? The essence of the military's After-Action Report (AAR).

Thank you for the comments. Whether I agreed or not, all got me to ponder.

--- End of line (MCP)
Trump has spent the last three years attacking the media now he suddenly wants people to believe the media.
He has spent the last three years lying and now he expects anyone to trust what he has to say?

He has spent the last three years attacking democrats as evil scum and divided the country and now he expect people to coalesce in a time of crisis?

This mess is purely on him

As to your point about the surgeon general if we don’t know if it would be effective why do it , then why try anything new at all?

To have an authority come on TV and reassure the public that through proper hygiene they can protect themselves and their loved ones would go a long way to reassuring the public.
Of course state’s can close schools and limit events which is what they did. However to stop the spread throughout the country the government at large could have and should have taken desisive action earlier.

Isn’t that the whole point of this thread. To determine what Trump should have done?

it’s not snark to mention Pences lack of belief in science. It is a fact. People who believe in science should be the ones in charge of the scientifically formulated response to a viral outbreak.
Not someone who allowed the largest HIV outbreak in recent history to occur under his watch due to his policies.
 
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transporter

Well-Known Member
I think the basic problem is as it has been since the day he came down the elevator. Trump is unqualified for the position he holds. Trump's basic problem, one he doesn't seem big enough to overcome, is that he thinks he is still the owner of a privately held company where his word is law.

You mentioned an army War College where you trained and reviewed scenarios such as this. So you should have some definitive concerns about the leadership that has been exhibited over the past 3 months. (Really the past 3 years as Trump has exhibited atrocious leadership qualities.)

Trump hasn't at any point, led. Sure he has the ability to bully. He has the ability to attack others. But he can't lead. To lead, one must know where they are going.

Wings of Gold's point about closing the borders is just as dumb as Trump's banning European travel to the US. There was never any question that this virus would get here. We had at least two months to plan. It is now the middle of March.

We still aren't testing people properly. Look at the article I posted earlier about South Korea vs Italy. Right now, we are Italy. No, testing doesn't stop the virus, but it does tell you where it is. It does tell you where to marshall your resources. You can cancel sporting events in NY City if there is an outbreak...but you can continue to hold ones in Denver. We are cancelling everything because we don't have any other info to go on.

TPD's comments about the FEB 29 presser are also silly. No one on that stage knew who was in charge. Was it Trump? Was it Azara (sp?)? Was it Pence? Nobody knew...certainly not the world who was watching or even Trump himself who waved his arm in frustration and walked out.

Trump could speak eloquently and factually. Trump sounds like a moron when he speaks. Did you ever in your Army War College days meet a guy with stars on his collar who could not command? At that level of professional attainment certain skills are required for the job. One of those skills is the ability to issue orders and direct the troops.

When Trump speaks he is inconsistent...last night was another classic example. Does anyone actually know what the policy of this country is with respect to trade? No...because Trump issued 3 different positions within hours.

Trump doesn't have a command of the facts...so he can't speak factually...so he has no credibility. No one believes him because he has spent his entire life lying to everyone around him. He really doesn't seem to know the difference between truth and lie.

He should have surrounded himself with experts and listen to them. Instead of trashing the governor of Wash State, Trump should have worked with him. Instead of announcing a unilateral ban on travel from Europe Trump should have consulted the Europeans. His excuse that "there was no time" doesn't compute. He's had 3 months to have these discussions or delegate them to lower level folks.

Trump makes a comment that is refuted by his own medical experts. Fauci is an expert. He is believable and credible. Trump is not credible.

Projecting calm....reassuring the nation. He sure failed miserably last night.

Stop blaming...start doing. Trump is more concerned with blaming the Chinese, the Europeans or the Democrats than he is with finding solutions to the problem. Fix the problem. The current problem is lack of knowledge about the spread of the virus in the US. Another current problem that is coming down the tracks FAST is the disruption to business. Mitigate the problem...stop fussing about "Democrat goodies".

And for Pete's sake...stop tweeting...stop watching Fox and Friends...stop golfing. ACT Presidential...but it is way too late for that.

In the end, you are looking for specific policy measures that should have been taken. My response to you have the cart before the horse. Before you can get to policy responses Trump would have to know how to lead. He doesn't.

He may have gotten extremely good advice. He didn't follow it. There may have been extremely competent contingency plans designed. Trump just wings it.

I am sure the Army College "gamed out" all sorts of scenarios. Do you honestly want to try to assert that Trump spent anytime considering options or listened to any advice before he went on TV last night??

But none of the above is news. Trump simply isn't qualified for the job.
 

Yooper

Up. Identified. Lase. Fire. On the way.
PREMO Member
Trump has spent the last three years attacking the media now he suddenly wants people to believe the media.
Of course state’s can close schools and limit events which is what they did. However to stop the spread throughout the country the government at large could have and should have taken desisive action earlier.
And yet when Trump imposed travel restrictions wrt China back at the end of January who was one of his largest critics? Allow me to remind you it was the presumptive Democrat nominee, Joe Biden. Now the hue and cry is that Trump should have been more restrictive earlier? Which is it? So what I'm seeing is a pretty clear signal that "politics" trumps "policy." And because of that a major reason why we can't easily have a coordinated public/private response.

it’s not snark to mention Pences lack of belief in science. It is a fact. People who believe in science should be the ones in charge of the scientifically formulated response to a viral outbreak.
Not someone who allowed the largest HIV outbreak in recent history to occur under his watch due to his policies.
This comment is downright partisan and ignorant. Sorry, but I can't it say it any nicer than that.

--- End of line (MCP)
 

Ken King

A little rusty but not crusty
PREMO Member
I think the basic problem is as it has been since the day he came down the elevator.
To point out the "stunningly obvious", it was an escalator and your hate for the man is and has been plain as day. It always has been you that is an establishment loving hack. All you have is criticism and your continued cry that he is "unpresidential". What the **** is presidential? Getting blowjobs in the Oval Office, letting an ambassador die without lifting a hand, what? Tell us. We are dying for your wisdom (not really but I wanted to swell your head a few more inches to match the size of your obvious bovine ass).
 

TPD

the poor dad
I think the basic problem is as it has been since the day he came down the elevator. Trump is unqualified for the position he holds. Trump's basic problem, one he doesn't seem big enough to overcome, is that he thinks he is still the owner of a privately held company where his word is law.

You mentioned an army War College where you trained and reviewed scenarios such as this. So you should have some definitive concerns about the leadership that has been exhibited over the past 3 months. (Really the past 3 years as Trump has exhibited atrocious leadership qualities.)

Trump hasn't at any point, led. Sure he has the ability to bully. He has the ability to attack others. But he can't lead. To lead, one must know where they are going.

Wings of Gold's point about closing the borders is just as dumb as Trump's banning European travel to the US. There was never any question that this virus would get here. We had at least two months to plan. It is now the middle of March.

We still aren't testing people properly. Look at the article I posted earlier about South Korea vs Italy. Right now, we are Italy. No, testing doesn't stop the virus, but it does tell you where it is. It does tell you where to marshall your resources. You can cancel sporting events in NY City if there is an outbreak...but you can continue to hold ones in Denver. We are cancelling everything because we don't have any other info to go on.

TPD's comments about the FEB 29 presser are also silly. No one on that stage knew who was in charge. Was it Trump? Was it Azara (sp?)? Was it Pence? Nobody knew...certainly not the world who was watching or even Trump himself who waved his arm in frustration and walked out.

Trump could speak eloquently and factually. Trump sounds like a moron when he speaks. Did you ever in your Army War College days meet a guy with stars on his collar who could not command? At that level of professional attainment certain skills are required for the job. One of those skills is the ability to issue orders and direct the troops.

When Trump speaks he is inconsistent...last night was another classic example. Does anyone actually know what the policy of this country is with respect to trade? No...because Trump issued 3 different positions within hours.

Trump doesn't have a command of the facts...so he can't speak factually...so he has no credibility. No one believes him because he has spent his entire life lying to everyone around him. He really doesn't seem to know the difference between truth and lie.

He should have surrounded himself with experts and listen to them. Instead of trashing the governor of Wash State, Trump should have worked with him. Instead of announcing a unilateral ban on travel from Europe Trump should have consulted the Europeans. His excuse that "there was no time" doesn't compute. He's had 3 months to have these discussions or delegate them to lower level folks.

Trump makes a comment that is refuted by his own medical experts. Fauci is an expert. He is believable and credible. Trump is not credible.

Projecting calm....reassuring the nation. He sure failed miserably last night.

Stop blaming...start doing. Trump is more concerned with blaming the Chinese, the Europeans or the Democrats than he is with finding solutions to the problem. Fix the problem. The current problem is lack of knowledge about the spread of the virus in the US. Another current problem that is coming down the tracks FAST is the disruption to business. Mitigate the problem...stop fussing about "Democrat goodies".

And for Pete's sake...stop tweeting...stop watching Fox and Friends...stop golfing. ACT Presidential...but it is way too late for that.

In the end, you are looking for specific policy measures that should have been taken. My response to you have the cart before the horse. Before you can get to policy responses Trump would have to know how to lead. He doesn't.

He may have gotten extremely good advice. He didn't follow it. There may have been extremely competent contingency plans designed. Trump just wings it.

I am sure the Army College "gamed out" all sorts of scenarios. Do you honestly want to try to assert that Trump spent anytime considering options or listened to any advice before he went on TV last night??

But none of the above is news. Trump simply isn't qualified for the job.
And you offered up nothing about the purpose of this thread - what should have been done?
 

Yooper

Up. Identified. Lase. Fire. On the way.
PREMO Member
I think the basic problem is as it has been since the day he came down the elevator. Trump is unqualified for the position he holds. Trump's basic problem, one he doesn't seem big enough to overcome, is that he thinks he is still the owner of a privately held company where his word is law.

You mentioned an army War College where you trained and reviewed scenarios such as this. So you should have some definitive concerns about the leadership that has been exhibited over the past 3 months. (Really the past 3 years as Trump has exhibited atrocious leadership qualities.)

Trump hasn't at any point, led. Sure he has the ability to bully. He has the ability to attack others. But he can't lead. To lead, one must know where they are going.

Wings of Gold's point about closing the borders is just as dumb as Trump's banning European travel to the US. There was never any question that this virus would get here. We had at least two months to plan. It is now the middle of March.

We still aren't testing people properly. Look at the article I posted earlier about South Korea vs Italy. Right now, we are Italy. No, testing doesn't stop the virus, but it does tell you where it is. It does tell you where to marshall your resources. You can cancel sporting events in NY City if there is an outbreak...but you can continue to hold ones in Denver. We are cancelling everything because we don't have any other info to go on.

TPD's comments about the FEB 29 presser are also silly. No one on that stage knew who was in charge. Was it Trump? Was it Azara (sp?)? Was it Pence? Nobody knew...certainly not the world who was watching or even Trump himself who waved his arm in frustration and walked out.

Trump could speak eloquently and factually. Trump sounds like a moron when he speaks. Did you ever in your Army War College days meet a guy with stars on his collar who could not command? At that level of professional attainment certain skills are required for the job. One of those skills is the ability to issue orders and direct the troops.

When Trump speaks he is inconsistent...last night was another classic example. Does anyone actually know what the policy of this country is with respect to trade? No...because Trump issued 3 different positions within hours.

Trump doesn't have a command of the facts...so he can't speak factually...so he has no credibility. No one believes him because he has spent his entire life lying to everyone around him. He really doesn't seem to know the difference between truth and lie.

He should have surrounded himself with experts and listen to them. Instead of trashing the governor of Wash State, Trump should have worked with him. Instead of announcing a unilateral ban on travel from Europe Trump should have consulted the Europeans. His excuse that "there was no time" doesn't compute. He's had 3 months to have these discussions or delegate them to lower level folks.

Trump makes a comment that is refuted by his own medical experts. Fauci is an expert. He is believable and credible. Trump is not credible.

Projecting calm....reassuring the nation. He sure failed miserably last night.

Stop blaming...start doing. Trump is more concerned with blaming the Chinese, the Europeans or the Democrats than he is with finding solutions to the problem. Fix the problem. The current problem is lack of knowledge about the spread of the virus in the US. Another current problem that is coming down the tracks FAST is the disruption to business. Mitigate the problem...stop fussing about "Democrat goodies".

And for Pete's sake...stop tweeting...stop watching Fox and Friends...stop golfing. ACT Presidential...but it is way too late for that.

In the end, you are looking for specific policy measures that should have been taken. My response to you have the cart before the horse. Before you can get to policy responses Trump would have to know how to lead. He doesn't.

He may have gotten extremely good advice. He didn't follow it. There may have been extremely competent contingency plans designed. Trump just wings it.

I am sure the Army College "gamed out" all sorts of scenarios. Do you honestly want to try to assert that Trump spent anytime considering options or listened to any advice before he went on TV last night??

But none of the above is news. Trump simply isn't qualified for the job.
I think you and I value things differently and value different things. As such, we see things differently.

WRT the Army War College gaming scenarios, we did. As far as Trump spending any time considering options, the honest answer is I don't know. But because we see things around us through different lens you come to a far different conclusion than I do. So while you are sure Trump didn't I can say with certainty I think he did (and does).

Your problems with Trump seem to result from him not acting in accordance with your worldview. So as a result, are you able to honestly say that you could give him credit when he does something well/correct? Or is the answer "I could, but he just hasn't. And he won't." Fair enough, but we would differ. Because through my worldview lens he has done quite a few things correctly. And on balance am pleased with his performance as President.

I get it, for you Trump is a buffoon. So who, for example, isn't? Who, if you could just pluck someone from out of the blue and put him/her in the Oval Office, would you see as a good president? A good leader? What does it mean to "act presidential"? What qualifications does one need to have to be qualified for the office? Who fits that bill for you?

For example, many saw Obama as presidential. As a good leader. While he got my 100% loyalty my private opinion was that he was a real light-weight. His command presence was a joke, he was fake, insincere, over his head, had an agenda that wasn't healthy for the military, was utterly naive on the foreign policy front (or, worse, cynically played to a personal agenda that wasn't in the country's long-term best interests), on and on. The country was not in a better place after his eight years of being at the helm. Yet half the country loved him. So were they wrong? Not to them they weren't. All we have now is the shoe being on the other foot. Since I love history let me add this. While I am not saying Trump will be looked back upon with the reverence Lincoln now gets I will say that much of what is said about Trump these days was said about Lincoln then.

So again, who would you pick? I'm genuinely curious. Perhaps that's a better question (as opposed to "what should he have done?), because who you pick would say much about how you approach things.

--- End of line (MCP)
 

SamSpade

Well-Known Member
You know - I can't help but compare what Trump has done to what was done with H1N1 - and the responses and numbers just speak for themselves.


On February 12, 2010, the CDC released updated estimate figures for swine flu, reporting that, in total, 57 million Americans had been sickened, 257,000 had been hospitalised and 11,690 people had died (including 1,180 children) due to swine flu from April through to mid-January.[130]
 

Yooper

Up. Identified. Lase. Fire. On the way.
PREMO Member
Some thoughts....

Does previous USG policy (in any domain, across both domestic and foreign arenas) hamper our government's current ability to react to this issue? In that vein, are previous political choices (made by the electorate via its local, state, and Federal voting) making things worse?

Do business practices that seem to favor sole-source production in China bear any responsibility for this issue?

Did pressure from certain industries (be it travel-related, pharmaceutical-related, etc.) prevent the USG from acting (or create enough friction as to appear to prevent)?

Have foreign governments made our response worse (or better)? Or other international entities (such as the UN or WHO)?

Or did all of this COVID-19 stuff occur in a vacuum?

I could go on and on, but my point is that this is an extraordinarily complicated issue where the answer is far greater than the resolution of any single issue.

Anyway, I still don't see a lot of specific suggestions and rationales. That's not a dig; instead, it's an indicator as to how hard it is for us to get our arms around an extraordinarily complex problem in order to suggest something definitive.

What do Yinz think about these two extreme (and opposing) suggestions? Which one trips your trigger? Why would they work, why wouldn't they?
Suggestion 1: Have the government step back and let states, localities, and private business take care of COVID-19.

Suggestion 2: Close all our borders, ports of entry, ground all airlines. Call up the Guard, declare martial law and enforce mandatory 3-week quarantine-in-place.

If the answer is "neither," then we're back to the "equities" problem. As I mentioned in a reply on a different thread, which Peter gets robbed to pay for which Paul? Does the USG go further into debt to "help" industries hurt by this? Which industries?

I don't have any good answers. But I do have faith that good people are trying to do their best given all the variables. Whether that turns out to be good enough remains to be seen.

--- End of line (MCP)
 

Stjohns3269

Active Member
And yet when Trump imposed travel restrictions wrt China back at the end of January who was one of his largest critics? Allow me to remind you it was the presumptive Democrat nominee, Joe Biden. Now the hue and cry is that Trump should have been more restrictive earlier? Which is it? So what I'm seeing is a pretty clear signal that "politics" trumps "policy." And because of that a major reason why we can't easily have a coordinated public/private response.


This comment is downright partisan and ignorant. Sorry, but I can't it say it any nicer than that.

--- End of line (MCP)
So now it’s partisan to mention Pence’s record in Indiana?

we should just ignore that his policies led to the largest HIV outbreak in the US in the last two decades?

So in your opinion any criticism of Trump is partisan and now the same is true of Pence?

How does one constructively offer solutions if you can’t discuss past policies and decision making of the subjects?

Do you not believe that people who believe in science should be the ones in charge of formulating a response to a pandemic?
 

Yooper

Up. Identified. Lase. Fire. On the way.
PREMO Member
You know - I can't help but compare what Trump has done to what was done with H1N1 - and the responses and numbers just speak for themselves.


On February 12, 2010, the CDC released updated estimate figures for swine flu, reporting that, in total, 57 million Americans had been sickened, 257,000 had been hospitalised and 11,690 people had died (including 1,180 children) due to swine flu from April through to mid-January.[130]
Yeah, this episode should have been instructive. I would hope there was a good AAR at all levels to sort through "best practices." My guess is that the answer, however, is no. It's the nature of the beast for the undifferentiated ego mass of the body politic to find it easier to move on to greener pastures than to learn....

--- End of line (MCP)
 

TPD

the poor dad
Some thoughts....

Does previous USG policy (in any domain, across both domestic and foreign arenas) hamper our government's current ability to react to this issue? In that vein, are previous political choices (made by the electorate via its local, state, and Federal voting) making things worse?

Do business practices that seem to favor sole-source production in China bear any responsibility for this issue?

Did pressure from certain industries (be it travel-related, pharmaceutical-related, etc.) prevent the USG from acting (or create enough friction as to appear to prevent)?

Have foreign governments made our response worse (or better)? Or other international entities (such as the UN or WHO)?

Or did all of this COVID-19 stuff occur in a vacuum?

I could go on and on, but my point is that this is an extraordinarily complicated issue where the answer is far greater than the resolution of any single issue.

Anyway, I still don't see a lot of specific suggestions and rationales. That's not a dig; instead, it's an indicator as to how hard it is for us to get our arms around an extraordinarily complex problem in order to suggest something definitive.

What do Yinz think about these two extreme (and opposing) suggestions? Which one trips your trigger? Why would they work, why wouldn't they?
Suggestion 1: Have the government step back and let states, localities, and private business take care of COVID-19.

Suggestion 2: Close all our borders, ports of entry, ground all airlines. Call up the Guard, declare martial law and enforce mandatory 3-week quarantine-in-place.

If the answer is "neither," then we're back to the "equities" problem. As I mentioned in a reply on a different thread, which Peter gets robbed to pay for which Paul? Does the USG go further into debt to "help" industries hurt by this? Which industries?

I don't have any good answers. But I do have faith that good people are trying to do their best given all the variables. Whether that turns out to be good enough remains to be seen.

--- End of line (MCP)
Yes.

initially I go with suggestion #1, but then that depends on what state I live in. Is the tail wagging the dog, meaning are the state decisions (ie Hogan closing schools) because of what the federal government is saying? I have faith in private industry making the right decisions, provided they are not influenced by government decisions.
 

Yooper

Up. Identified. Lase. Fire. On the way.
PREMO Member
So now it’s partisan to mention Pence’s record in Indiana?

we should just ignore that his policies led to the largest HIV outbreak in the US in the last two decades?

So in your opinion any criticism of Trump is partisan and now the same is true of Pence?

How does one constructively offer solutions if you can’t discuss past policies and decision making of the subjects?

Do you not believe that people who believe in science should be the ones in charge of formulating a response to a pandemic?
What is partisan is to attach ad hominem to statements about capability and competence and expect an audience that may not share your take to buy it with no pushback. Feel free to disagree with Pence's record in Indiana, but "going low" by making assertions that his religious beliefs (beliefs that you have no real idea are true) led to policies that led to... isn't helpful. If you really believe "his policies led to the largest HIV outbreak in the US in the last two decades" then it is incumbent upon you to show a) data about this outbreak and b) if it occurred how his policies led to that. Otherwise, you're stringing together events for politically convenient reasons. That's not a policy discussion, that's politics. So I'm not going to play "Because of an unproven 'X' this person is unqualified for the current 'Y'."

--- End of line (MCP)
 
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