Trump’s Manifest Incompetence

Clete Wetli | March 24, 2020 | Opinion Article

Anyone who takes even a superficial glance at Trump’s many past business failures and real estate tax-avoidance, shell-game fiascos, will rapidly come to know the depth and pervasiveness of Trump’s loathsome narcissism and manifest incompetence. His lack of factual understanding, vulgar instincts, and shameless greed have all been displayed as the COVID-19 crisis continues to escalate globally.

Let just start with the fact that Trump did away with the CDC office that was in charge of handling pandemics (you know, ones EXACTLY LIKE THIS!) over two years ago. Worse, he ignored the early warnings and initial briefings regarding COVID-19. He deliberately chose apathy and impotence over decisiveness and responsive action. His words and actions demonstrate that he has no grasp of what “proactive” means. Now, he just blatantly babbles lies and hurls partisan accusations during his coronavirus press conferences, perhaps a glimpse into his magical thinking- that this thing’s not so bad and everything will all be back to normal in just a few short weeks. He’s told people testing was available when it wasn’t, he’s recklessly advocated specific drugs that have not been approved for treating COVID-19, and he’s even managed to act like a bigoted juvenile when he began referring to the deadly illness as the “Chinese Virus”.  

The latest example of head-shaking incompetence is evident in Trump’s recent public statement in which he expresses his desire to scale back social distancing requirements because of the impact on the economy. Clearly, Trump doesn’t mind if you have the virus or are spreading the virus-like Johnny Coughing Appleseed, just so long as you act like a mindless consumer and buy something like gilded toilet paper from the Trump gift shop, thereby doing your part to keep stock prices high so that the rich can keep getting richer.

Trump has gone from calling the Coronavirus a Democrat-inspired hoax to boasting that “we have it totally under control” to laughably claiming recently, “I’ve always known this is a real thing, this is a pandemic. I’ve felt that it was a pandemic long before it was called a pandemic. All you had to do was look at other countries, I think now it’s in almost a 120 countries, all over the world. No, I’ve always viewed it as serious. There was no difference yesterday from days before.”

*Face-palm*

Adding to the damage caused by Trump’s incompetence, the Republicans are making no secret of their allegiance to the wealthiest at the expense of the middle-class and poor. This became evident in the details of the stalled $2 Trillion Senate Coronavirus Republican-backed stimulus proposal that was simply a huge corporate hand-out. It only gave superficial assistance to individuals. Worse, it would allow big companies to enrich themselves off the crisis similar to what happened in 2008 as corporations gorged themselves on executive raises and stock buybacks using tax-payer dollars. 

Trump’s abysmal failure as a leader is shockingly more evident by the hour as the pandemic begins to accelerate in America. Democrats, like Sen. Doug Jones of Alabama, did absolutely the right thing by voting against Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnel’s flawed and unfair proposal. In a video statement, Jones said, “We need a strong, bipartisan package that directly assists our workers, our health care providers, and vulnerable folks who need it most. We have no time to waste, so I am hopeful that this failed vote reiterates the message to Leader McConnell that the time for games is over and we need to move tonight to a bill that can receive broad support from the Senate and also pass in the House. We’ve got more work to do on this bill to make sure we’re not leaving working families behind.”

In sharp contrast to Sen. Jones’ empathetic leadership and unwavering advocacy for the working-class, Trump seems obsessed with the stock market and appears to be ignoring the quickly changing reality of ordinary Americans in cities across the country. Unemployment is poised to skyrocket. Hospitals will undoubtedly face bed and supply shortages. Average people are going to need real and significant help. Trust me, hedge fund managers, CEOs, and real estate tycoons are going to be just fine regardless of what happens next.

Since Trump swore the oath, his incompetence has been a darkly absurdist display and he’s definitely inflicted lasting damage on government institutions, norms, and long-standing policies. However, his colossal failure as a leader during the COVID-19 crisis is disgusting, morally bankrupt, and unforgivable on so many levels. It’s critical for America’s survival to vote this incompetent greedy narcissist out of office. 

The Coronavirus crisis has shown us that Trump is uniquely incapable, willfully ignorant, and wholly incompetent. This will permanently define his legacy, including his Republican enablers who allow this travesty to continue.


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