Tag Archives: pandemic

Pandemic surrender?

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

Did I hear this correctly?

Did the White House chief of staff, Mark Meadows, actually tell CNN’s Jake Tapper that the White House cannot “control” the pandemic that Donald Trump keeps saying is “under control”?

I’ll be dipped …

There can be zero doubt as to why Joe Biden is making the pandemic response — or non-response — from the White House his signature campaign topic as he seeks to defeat Donald Trump in eight days.

Biden is telling the nation that Trump has “quit” on Americans, that he is lying about having the pandemic under control. Trump keeps lying. Now we have the White House chief of staff, who should be Trump’s key adviser, essentially endorsing Biden’s allegation of Trump’s decision to quit, to surrender in the fight against the pandemic.

Simply astonishing.

Meanwhile, Americans continue to get sick, continue to die. Their families continue to worry about their loved ones’ fate and continue to mourn their deaths.

We hear now that the White House is saying it cannot do what Donald Trump has said it has done already.

Mixed message? Yeah! Do you think?

Down the stretch they go!

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

As long as the media keep reporting on the “horse race” aspect of the 2020 presidential campaign, I suppose it’s fitting now to note that Joe Biden and Donald Trump are heading down the stretch.

Did anything change substantively from their second and final joint appearance? It appears, um … no!

Biden’s lead remains steady if not overwhelming. Trump is trying to find a new path to the 270 electoral votes he needs to win re-election. Biden is taking his talking points this week — get this — to Georgia! Biden thinks he has a chance to capture that Deep South bastion of Republican politics. Who knew?

I remain hopeful — but I am leery — that Biden can pull this off, that he can banish Trump from the White House and that he can restore our national “soul,” which was his initial campaign message when he jumped into this contest.

My hope cannot wipe away the memory of what happened in 2016. Hillary Clinton led Trump down the stretch, too. Then she — and the rest of us — got the surprise of our political lives when Trump cobbled together an electoral majority to win!

He ran four years ago as an outsider vowing to shake things up. Well, he has shaken things up, all right. Now he is the ultimate insider.

Oh, and we have that pandemic that he ignored and the economic revival he inherited has collapsed as a result.

Stay busy, Joe Biden. Your work ain’t done yet.

Trump speaks stupidly

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

Forrest Gump had it right when he said, “Stupid is as stupid does.”

With that want to I delve into Donald J. Trump’s latest volley of stupid statements, this time involving one of the world’s premier epidemiologists, Dr. Anthony Fauci.

You see, we have the Liar in Chief calling Fauci’s work on the coronavirus pandemic a “disaster.” What’s more, he threw in an epithet hardly befitting anyone, let alone a president of the United States. He referred to Fauci as an “idiot.”

I am left with three thoughts.

One of them is how in the name of presidential statesmanship can Donald Trump refer to his handpicked science adviser on the pandemic as being a “disaster” to the White House pandemic response team. Trump selected this individual to serve on that team, tasking him with providing cold, hard scientific data. Trump promised to listen to the experts on the team. He lied about that, too!

The second thought is the use of the “idiot” term to refer to Fauci, an Ivy League-educated scientist and medical doctor who has served every president of both parties dating back to Ronald Wilson Reagan. He has been at the forefront of HIV/AIDS research, has led efforts to fight previous epidemics.

Dr. Fauci is as brilliant a doctor/scientist on matters of infection disease as anyone on Earth.

Yet he now is being scorned and vilified by a politician who cannot find his backside with both hands when it comes to discussing intelligently the complicated matters of science and epidemiology.

Finally, how in the world does Dr. Fauci continue to work for this moron? Fauci would be able to provide unfettered scientific advice and counsel to the nation without having to answer to Donald J. Trump, whose abject stupidity continues to marvel me.

Trumpkins hang tough … astounding!

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

I must admit to a certain astonishment as I watch Donald Trump seek re-election as president of the United States.

It comes as I watch those members of the Trumpkin Corps continue to make excuses for their candidate’s astounding behavior. I admit to watching Trump at those rallies he stages and am shocked and amazed at how little substance he offers. Indeed, his rants and riffs are bereft of any policy initiatives.

He prances and preens in front of those adoring fans of his as if he’s a TV star … oh, wait! I forgot that he once was one once upon a time. He mocks Joe Biden because the former vice president chooses to wear a mask while speaking in public. Hey, we do have a pandemic among us that is still killing Americans by the hundreds every day.

Trump gripes about the news coverage he gets. He has taken aim at the moderator of the next “debate” scheduled for later this week with Biden, NBC reporter Kristen Welker.

Trump continues to deploy his Twitter account relentlessly, ad nauseum.

And still … the Trumpkins out there think he’s just the bee’s knees, the greatest thing since pockets on shirts, the alleged “messiah,” the guy who “tells it like it is.”

They ignore the president’s failure to respond initially to the COVID-19 pandemic. They dismiss Trump’s unwillingness to challenge Russian loon Vladimir Putin for placing bounties on our American fighting men and women and paying real money to Taliban terrorists for killing them on the battlefield. They ignore his un-Christian behavior at every turn yet some of them keep suggesting that God dispatched Trump onto the campaign trail in 2016 to save the nation.

This individual has created a cult of personality the likes of which I have never seen in this great nation of ours. He cuddles (proverbially) with murderous dictators and denigrates our own intelligence professionals. Trump recently said FBI director Christopher Wray “isn’t doing a very good job” because Wray says white supremacists pose an existential threat to this nation. He challenges the expert advice given him and the nation by the world’s pre-eminent infectious disease guru, Dr. Anthony Fauci, who – for the life of me I don’t understand this – continues to serve at the pleasure of this goofball.

Through it all Trump sways the faithful who just cannot bring themselves to acknowledge what the rest of us have seen all along. It is that their guy is as phony as they come.

Pathological narcissism?

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis)92@hotmail.com

We were chatting with friends tonight about this and that when the subject turned to Donald J. Trump.

Specifically, we chatted for a moment about Trump’s inability or unwillingness to mourn the deaths of more than 215,000 Americans from a killer virus.

I noted to our friends that the most astonishing aspect of Trump’s lack of empathy or compassion is that the man himself has lost a member of his family to tragic circumstances. His brother Fred died of alcohol abuse. So, Donald Trump — one could presume — could relate to the pain of others who have lost loved ones to a disease.

Then one of our friends offered an astute observation. “There is some serious pathology going on here,” he said. “Trump is a narcissist,” he said, and narcissism doesn’t allow Trump to exhibit the kind of empathy one would expect from most individuals.

Instead, Trump continues to insist, as he did again today, that we are “turning the corner” on the killer virus despite reports from more than 30 states that illness is surging right along with death from the coronavirus.

We are turning no corners. None. It’s worsening. We still do not have a national plan to attack the illness and to save lives.

Meanwhile, a president who should know better than to say “it is what it is” continues to exhibit an outrageous lack of concern for those among us who are suffering grievous misery.

Is he infecting his throngs deliberately?

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

This thought comes from a member of my family and I want to share it here.

Since the early 1980s, when the world first got acquainted with a killer virus known as HIV/AIDS, we have seen an interesting and regrettable trend develop.

Over the span of many years, individuals have been arrested and convicted of crimes relating to the deliberate infecting of other people with HIV/AIDS. Today it’s now known as “HIV non-disclosure,” meaning that someone passes the virus on to others without telling them they are infected.

Some HIV/AIDS-infected men have raped or drugged women while having unprotected sex with them. They have gotten caught, tried and sent to the slammer. History is replete with instances of this kind of prosecution.

My family members wonders — and I happen to concur with this view — why those who are infected with COVID-19 can get away with exposing others to a virus that is every bit as fatal as HIV/AIDS once was thought to be.

Listen to me, Donald J. Trump. I’m talking about you. I also am talking to the minion/morons who support your cockamamie notion that it’s OK to mingle with others without exercising proper “social distancing” and without wearing protective masks.

Trump is back to staging rallies. He has been infected with the coronavirus, along with literally dozens of key aides and staffers. They traipse around with masks, without observing the distance guidelines offered by health experts.

Isn’t there some criminal liability here in the fashion that has been ascribed to HIV/AIDS patients who infect others?

If not, then there damn well should be!

Trump ‘cured’? Uh, huh

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

Donald J. Trump says he is “cured” of the coronavirus that felled him and the first lady.

Do you believe him? Do you take anything that comes from Trump’s mouth at face value? Nope. Neither do I.

The doctors, though, do say he is no longer contagious, which I suppose Trump has interpreted as meaning he is “cured.”

Donald Trump has called his positive test for the virus that has killed more than 215,000 Americans as  “blessing.” Yet he continues to downplay it. He declares the disease will disappear. I have this flash for The Donald: More than 50,000 Americans are still getting sick daily from the virus, which is a trend that has spanned several days in a row. From my perch out here in Flyover Country, it doesn’t look like the disease is anywhere near disappearing.

This brings me to another key point. If Trump was “blessed” to have been stricken by the virus, one might hope he would have learned to keep his mouth shut and let the scientists, the medical doctors and the assortment of experts who comprise his White House COVID response team explain to us in detail what is going on with the disease.

I only can surmise that Trump’s blessing doesn’t extend to acquiring any wisdom about speaking out of turn and spewing lies that put Americans at risk.

He went so far as to declare himself “immune” from future positivity because he has caught the disease once. Not so fast, say the experts. COVID doesn’t respect previous afflictions, they tell us.

So now we’re back to where we were when Donald Trump tested positive for a serious disease. I am glad he appears to be on the mend. I only wish he would have learned something from it. He didn’t learn a damn thing.

Leave the country?

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

This item showed up on my Facebook feed today. It makes me chuckle.

It reminded me of previous zealots who “threatened to leave” the country if a certain candidate was elected to high political office. Alec Baldwin said as much in advance of Donald Trump’s election in 2016; I believe Whoopi Goldberg did, too. Other celebrities pop off prior to election, threatening to do things they have no intention of doing.

To be honest, I have not heard any Trumpkins make such a pledge. It doesn’t bother me in the least were they to stay. I welcome them, actually.

In fact, I consider these statements about bailing on the country to be just so much nonsense from those who like to make idle threats.

Understand this: There likely was no one in America who was more adamantly anti-Donald Trump than I was during the 2016 presidential campaign. It never occurred to me — at least in any serious way — to pack up everything I own and move to some faraway land were he to actually be elected president.

I say that while acknowledging that my wife and I have friends in Germany who have offered to help us find a place to live there. If only the European Union would lift the travel ban on Americans because we have done such a sh**ty job handling the coronavirus pandemic. But that’s another story.

Yeah, these threats to leave the country make me laugh, and I do mean laugh. They aren’t to be taken seriously, even when high-profile celebrities make them.

So, let’s just chill out. Let us also allow the political system to run its course. If it turns out the right way, we can all rejoice in the return to sanity in our federal government. If it turns out badly, well, we can keep raising all the hell we want. Our beloved Constitution grants us that right.

Trump endangers his followers

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

Certainly long after this election has gone by — perhaps even forever and ever — I will remain baffled by how Donald Trump continues to hold onto his support when he puts his ardent followers at extreme risk of catching a virus that could have killed him.

Trump once again today called a rally at the White House. Supporters were arrayed in front of the balcony from which he spoke. Trump himself might still be contaminated with the COVID-19 virus that hospitalized him for a few days this week; at least he had sense enough to stay away from the fans.

There they were, though. Clustered together. Many of them wore masks. Some of them didn’t. They cheered the Old Man’s lies and invective just like they always do.

And there he was, in all his campaign-rally glory, exhorting the troops to march on as if nothing has happened to change everyone’s life for well past the foreseeable future.

Joe Biden continues to enjoy a comfortable poll lead. Do I believe the former vice president will win this election going away? Hah! No. I don’t! My hope remains strong that he will be able to win by a comfortable enough margin to dispel any doubt that Trump vows to concoct that the election is somehow “rigged.”

How in the world does Trump manage to hold tightly to that 40 to 42 percent bloc of voters, some of whom get to stand in front of him in crowds that defy medical experts’ recommendations — and admonitions?

It’s a mystery. Perhaps I should just let that mystery stand and cease trying to attach a semblance of reason to the irrational.

Terrorism comes home

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

Thirteen men have been charged with assorted crimes associated with a plot to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and possibly do some serious harm to her.

These individuals are terrorists. They fit the description. They aren’t religious zealots. They do not march under some foreign flag.

They are home-grown, corn-fed terrorists and for the life of me I do not understand why Donald Trump won’t condemn them for what they are accused of doing.

The FBI busted them this week as Whitmer sought to manage the coronavirus pandemic that continues to ravage the state she governs. You’ll remember that other armed “militia” members stormed the Michigan capitol in Lansing, taking over the public’s grounds in a hideous display of armed defiance of the government.

These lunatics are members of something called the Boogaloo Boys.

The FBI has uncovered a plot described as an attempt to kidnap Whitmer, put her on “trial,” and punish her for whatever conviction they concoct.

Donald Trump’s response to all of this has been to criticize Whitmer’s handling of the pandemic. Whitmer told an interviewer on Friday that a “decent man” would have asked how she’s doing and inquired about the health and well-being of her family. Donald Trump is, shall we say, not a decent man.

Here we are. The FBI is now pursuing an investigation into a serious terrorist threat that resides in the nation’s heartland. Of course, this isn’t a new phenomenon. Recall what Timothy McVeigh did in April 1995 when he detonated a bomb in front of the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City, killing 168 Americans … including several children. Back then, though, we had a president — Bill Clinton — who had the heart to call it then what we knew it to be: an act of terror.

These terrorists well could portend a wave that should frighten us all we move past this most consequential election.