If we’re candid about our own beliefs, we would acknowledge that we don’t usually think of President George W. Bush as a visionary politician.
Lo and behold, though, comes reporting that in the summer of 2005, while vacationing at his Central Texas ranch, President Bush was reading a book about the 1918 influenza pandemic, aka the Spanish Flu. He returned to Washington and told his top homeland security adviser, Fran Townsend, about what he had read.
The book alarmed and alerted the president, who then told the nation that we needed to get and stay prepared to deal with the next pandemic, which he concluded occurs about every 100 years.
Hmm. Well, he was right. He wanted to re-double our efforts to fight a global pandemic.
President Bush left office in January 2009, handing the office over to Barack H. Obama, who would form a pandemic response team within the National Security Council.
Oh, but wait! President Obama turned the officer in January 2017 to Donald J. Trump. What did the new president do? He disbanded the NSC pandemic team.
So now we learn that Trump not only dismissed the efforts of his immediate predecessor but also of the man who preceded President Obama. Yes, it was George W. Bush who sounded the alarm that Donald Trump chose to ignore … until it was too late.
We’re caught now in the latest pandemic. The coronavirus crisis is killing thousands of human beings every day. The worst is still to come. Most of our states are reacting relatively quickly to the emergency. The feds? They are still trying to catch up. Heck, they’re still trying to get their message straight, which is a damn near impossible task, given Donald Trump’s inability to speak coherently, seriously and knowledgeably about the pandemic.
Do you feel safe now with Donald Trump in charge? You’re not alone. Neither do I.