That’s how long ago I wrote this article:
And here we are. Let me take you on a brief stroll through the last 16 days.
Remember when I said Trump was going to piss the world off and nobody was going to come help us when shit happened?
It’s in here. I suggest reading Aftermath or Dots. Later.
Meanwhile: How did this happen?
One word: Putin.
On March 6, when the US was still largely in denial, this was the party line. It’s taken only 16 days to get where we are today. Most of the major coastal cities are on some form of lock-down, and the majority of the country’s breadbasket couldn’t care less because they’re convinced this won’t affect them one whit.
“But neither the CDC nor the coronavirus task force chaired by Vice President Mike Pence would say who made the decision to forgo the WHO test and instead begin a protracted process of producing an American test, one that got delayed by manufacturing problems, possible lab contamination and logistical delays.”
Two days later, after reports that infected people attended CPAC this year (including Pence and Trump), this word got out:
The Hill: Paul Gosar says he’s under ‘self-quarantine’ after interacting with person at CPAC who now has coronavirus
I would like to say I’m sorry about this, but I’m not. The members of CPAC all get what they deserve for blowing up our safety net. If that was the be-all, end-all, I’d be okay with it. But it’s not.
On March 12 (six days), we started looking for someone to take responsibility. Instead? We got this:
Snopes.com: Did Trump Administration Fire the US Pandemic Response Team?
As a new coronavirus spread in 2020, so did concerns about the United States’ preparedness for a potential pandemic.
Yep. Mr. “Obama’s work must be burned down” IS responsible. Thanks. But he’s not the only one who’s complicit.
GQ: Trump Voters Wanted to Blow up the System. Well, Here We Go.
Yeah, it would be nice to blame just Trump and his administration, but we got here for a reason. And it wasn’t just Trump voters, either. Every so-called “Third Party” voter should bear the same responsibility. We had a shot at a different future, but we’re here today because people believe what they want to believe and they were convinced this is what a Clinton presidency would lead to.
Fast Company: When you say coronavirus will only kill the vulnerable, you’re talking about me
As the coronavirus turned into a pandemic, I’ve watched public figures try to reassure people that only vulnerable people—people like me—will die.
Just because you might be in a low risk group doesn’t mean everyone is. I have a form of asthma. Many of my friends have compromised immune systems.
Of the three of these articles, though, it’s the third that gives me actual pause. On that particular morning around 3:30am, I was Googling “martial law.” Why? Because I woke up from a fitful sleep to wonder what would happen if I looked for “movie+plot+virus+martial+law+fascist” and this is the article that showed up in my feed.
The Nation: An Internal Pandemic Document Shows the Coronavirus Gives Trump Extraordinary Powers
A leaked Customs and Border Protection directive allows the agency to actively surveil and detain individuals suspected of carrying the illness—indefinitely.
Nice to see I’m not just imagining things, right?
From the article:
“Titled “Operations Plan for Pandemic Response” and marked for official use only, the document was drafted during the avian flu pandemic of 2007. It’s a blunt statement of authority, describing Customs and Border Patrol overseeing potential tent cities of quarantined detainees at the border and coordinating with unspecified intelligence agencies—both foreign and domestic—as well as the Pentagon.
Though the plan was drafted during the Bush administration, it remains CBP’s most recent pandemic response plan and is still in effect, according to a Department of Homeland Security source who provided The Nation with the document. A memo dated February 28 of this year, signed by CBP’s Acting Commissioner Mark Morgan and reviewed by The Nation, made reference to the pandemic response plan.”
You know who did show up when I searched on those words above? Ferdinand Marcos.
But I digress.
March 13 (seven days): Trump tried to lie his way into a different reality. Google had something to say about that.
This is also the day the stock market officially entered Bear territory.
The same day, this article landed at The Atlantic:
The Trump Presidency Is Over
It has taken a good deal longer than it should have, but Americans have now seen the con man behind the curtain.
This is what worries me most, because the Senate Republicans a chance to stop this shitstorm from happening. Instead they chose craven greed and corruption.
“The president, enraged for having been unmasked, will become more desperate, more embittered, more unhinged. He knows nothing will be the same.”
We have no idea what’s next.
March 15 (nine days):
Washington Post: U.S. sees largest one-day increase in coronavirus death toll since the outbreak began; San Francisco area asked to shelter at home
Live updates: Trump says states should find their own respirators; countries turn to drastic measures as new coronavirus infections rise outside China
There’s a shock:…from the article:
“President Trump in a Monday news conference recommended that states with evidence of community transmission of the virus should close schools, as well as bars, restaurants, gyms and other gathering spots. Trump suggested that the outbreak could last until July or August, and also said it’s possible the economy will go into recession.”
That’s not all, either.
The Atlantic: The Coronavirus Called America’s Bluff
Like Japan in the mid-1800s, the United States now faces a crisis that disproves everything the country believes about itself.
March 17 (eleven days):
The Atlantic: 2020 Time Capsule #4: Trump Is Lying, Blatantly
Seriously. This shit could have been avoided. I want to know why it wasn’t, but I really don’t have to ask. All I have to do is look at the news. It has Putin’s fingerprints all over it. It also has Trump’s. He sees this as the opportunity of a lifetime, and if we don’t get our collective act together, they’re going to win.
March 19 (thirteen days):
Trump is now working hard to shift blame away from his administration and to blow up racist anger against people who have nothing whatsoever to do with the disease. Rather than accept responsibility for making this situation a thousand times worse than it might otherwise have been, here we are.
Washington Post: U.S. intelligence reports from January and February warned about a likely pandemic
But this will only happen to Democrats in Democratic states, right?
I’ve been working from home since Monday (March 16, Day Ten). In that time, I’ve seen events cancelled all the way to Memorial Day, schools closed, probably for the year, entertainment venues shut down, and when I last visited the stores, there were huge empty spaces where just days earlier there were boxes, bags, jars, stacks of everything you can imagine.
Know what that looks like to me? Like those reports of bread and rationing lines in the Soviet Union, pre-1980.
Kids are going to go hungry. People across the country will die. And the President of the United States of America will take NO responsibility for any of it because even though he was TOLD this was a likely scenario, he believed that his pal in Moscow had his back. Now he’s panicking because the truth IS out there and it’s going to be impossible to hide when his own base starts dying. And when the GOP leadership were told this was going to happen, three of those stellar human beings dumped stock.
That’s right: The GOP’s base of voters has so far failed to understand how we got here and they are all too willing to assign blame to anyone BUT themselves. I have seen with my own eyes people who continue to praise Trump and his administration even in the face of all the bald-faced lying and verifiable facts.
The Supreme Court is in the hands of the GOP. So is the Senate. The House is the only thing standing in the way of a complete turnover of government. Its members are elected every two years, regardless of tenure. And now, that election process is in danger because people really don’t understand the way the GOP works. Will there be an election in 2020? Is there school now? Where are you working? Are you going to the office anymore?
I tell you this now: Those who still support a Republican agenda are either uber rich or fail to understand that when the GOP use pronouns such as “we” and “our” they don’t mean their average constituents. They are talking to the millionaires and billionaires. The suckers in red hats still won’t get it until they start dying.
It’s like I said, lo these many years: When the shit finally hits the fan here, nobody is going to come to our rescue. We’re on our own.
Are you in it for the long haul? Better start thinking about what happens when your local economy collapses. It is, in fact, only a matter of time, now.
And if…IF…you get the opportunity to vote this year, there is only one choice you can make, because the alternative is to give over this country to the Republicans, now and forever.