The coronavirus and character

The old adage is that "tough times build character."  The old adage is wrong.  The reality is that tough times reveal character, and a stunning number of people come up woefully lacking in this department:

  • A businessman who retooled his operation to make a wholly unrelated product because that product is needed in dealing with this virus is dismissed as "the pillow guy" by a media establishment whose malpractice is almost a punch line.
  • Members of Congress think it totes wonderful for people in certain delivery services to go on strike.  Because it's apparently better to have more people crowding into stores, not to mention the loss of income for the strikers.  But hey — eggs and omelets.
  • CBS used footage from Italy in a story about an NYC hospital and called that a "mistake."  Just as ABC some months back mistook a Kentucky firing range for a Turkish attack on Syrian Kurds.

It's a remarkably enlightening time in our history, not because of things being learned, but because of people being exposed for who and what they really are.  There have been multiple stories documenting serial failure across all levels of government to restock certain supplies, a failure that predates Trump.  Yet the talking point that the Trump administration responded so poorly continues being repeated.  Poorly compared to whom?

Trump banned flights from China, assembled a task force (which the media immediately objected to as too male and too white), and declared a public health emergency while his critics were marveling at their commemorative impeachment pens.  NYC officials were stoking interest for a February Chinese New Year event, and Pelosi was doing likewise on the other coast.  The E.U. wet itself over another travel ban, until its member nations began locking down their own borders.  Yet Trump is to blame.  Okay, doomers.

For the sake of argument, what would any other administration have done differently?  Obviously, no one knows for sure, yet it's presented as an article of faith that any other president would have done something bigger/stronger/faster/better.  Based on what, not knowing then what has only now come to light?  It's inconceivable to imagine similar hostility occurring if anyone from Cruz to Hillary or Ben Carson to Bernie were in the Oval Office.

If a Dem was president, Mike Lindell would have been on every morning show to detail how honored he is to help his country and answer the call of his wonderful commander in chief.  Some of the other CEOs assembled yesterday would be similarly feted for their selflessness, which could be possible only through the wisdom and guidance of the Dem-in-Charge.

The inability or unwillingness to think outside the Trump lines colors everything, to the point of being a meme unto itself.  A virus originates in China, which hides information and lies; the infected fly around the world to include the U.S.; taxis and shuttles move them into communities, facilitating the spread; hotspots emerge; and now people try to flee cities like N.Y., making the interstate system a mode of further spread.  And somehow, it's the fault of one Donald Trump.  This isn't just losing the ability to debate; it's losing the ability to reason at all.