Divided responses to Trumps address and travel ban

One address was never going to suddenly change the division over Donald Trump’s performance as president and on his handling of the Covid-19 coronavirus. Not long ago Trump was claiming the virus was a hoax and he has blamed a variety of countries and people, especially the media (that criticises him) and the Democrats.

Financial Times Donald Trump’s troubling coronavirus address

Perhaps the biggest fallout of Mr Trump’s address was what he did not say. His most glaring omission was any plan to increase America’s capacity to test for infections.

Epidemiologists say accurate testing is the single most effective method to counter the disease’s spread. It allows the authorities to isolate clusters, trace the movement of the virus and make critical decisions on where the biggest risks lie. That is what places such as Taiwan, Singapore and South Korea have done so effectively without resorting to the draconian measures taken in China.

Trump claimed “Our team is the best anywhere in the world”, but a key member of his team things differently – US admits ‘failing’ on testing, says Fauci top US health official Dr Anthony Fauci:

“The system is not really geared to what we need right now… that is a failing, let’s admit it. The idea of anybody getting it easily the way people in other countries are doing it, we’re not set up for that. Do I think we should be. Yes. But we’re not.” –

In his address Trump praised himself and the US, as he frequently does, and blamed others in the world.

This is the most aggressive and comprehensive effort to confront a foreign virus in modern history.

Viruses are ‘foreign’ to nearly every country, but the source of new strains is largely irrelevant.

China efforts were probably more aggressive and comprehensive, as were South Korea and Japan and recently in particular, Italy, who have just about locked the whole country down.

Until yesterday US states were acting on their own. The worst affected area, Washington State (at least 29 deaths), declared a state of emergency last month, and many other states have done likewise.

At the very start of the outbreak, we instituted sweeping travel restrictions on China.

The European Union failed to take the same precautions and restrict travel from China and other hotspots. As a result, a large number of new clusters in the United States were seeded by travelers from Europe.

No evidence of this claim.

Italy tried travel bans as early as January from China (before the US did), unsuccessfully.

Bizarrely Trump excluded the UK from his travel ban, saying that was because they had done “a good job” on the outbreak and “They don’t have very much infection at this point and hopefully they’ll keep it that way.”

ITV: Up to 10,000 people in UK could have coronavirus, chief scientific adviser warns

Up to 10,000 people in the UK could already be infected with coronavirus, the government’s chief scientific adviser Sir Patrick Vallance has warned.

Speaking at a press conference alongside the prime minister, it was announced the UK would now be moving from the “contain” to “delay” phase in a bid to slow down the spread of Covid-19.

That presumably includes trying to slow down the spread from the UK to the US.

Under the new measures, the Government is recommending foreign trips be cancelled and says even those with mild symptoms should self-isolate for seven days whether they have travelled to virus-hit countries or not.

So the UK is recommending against travel to the US.

Trump closed his address with:

Our future remains brighter than anyone can imagine. Acting with compassion and love, we will heal the sick, care for those in need, help our fellow citizens, and emerge from this challenge stronger and more unified than ever before.

Unifying is not something Trump is known for. After his address he continued his partisan attacking:

As usual, opinions are divided:

However the world financial markets are not divided. They have all reacted in unison – downwards.

Financial Times Donald Trump’s troubling coronavirus address

On Wednesday night the global pandemic met US nationalism. It will not take long to see which comes off best. As Donald Trump was speaking, the Dow futures market nosedived. His Europe travel ban came just a few hours after the US stock market entered bear territory — a fall of 20 per cent or more — for the first time since the global financial crisis. It also followed the World Health Organization’s declaration of a global pandemic. Mr Trump’s address was meant to calm the waters. By the time he finished they were considerably rougher.

Reuters: Markets tumble again as global coronavirus alarm spreads

Trump restricted certain travel from Europe to the United States in a televised address about the health crisis on Wednesday, shocking investors and travelers.

Major European bourses fell by double-digit percentages, with Italian stocks .FTMIB plunging 17% for their worst single-day loss ever, as stimulus efforts from the European Central Bank did little to calm nerves.

BBC: UK shares suffer worst day since 1987

Shares around the world have plunged as investors fear the spread of the coronavirus will destroy economic growth with government action unable to arrest the decline.

The main UK index dropped more than 10% in its worst day since 1987.

Losses on European indexes accelerated after the European Central Bank (ECB) failed to cut interest rates, although it did pledge fresh stimulus measures.

Earlier, stocks in Asia also saw big falls, with Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 index closing 4.4% lower.

“We can call this a market crash – particularly given speed and sharpness, as well as the size of the declines,” said Supriya Menon, senior multi-asset strategist at Pictet Asset Management. The “question is whether this will cause a recession”.

The French and German markets dropped more than 12%

Spain’s main index was down 14%, it’s biggest drop ever.

Wall Street opened after the address down about 7% (Dow Jones) and has mostly stayed down at that level (currently 2 pm so another 2 hours trading to go Thursday there).

NPR: The Fed Steps In, But Stock Market Meltdown Continues

Stocks recovered some of their losses after the Federal Reserve moved aggressively Thursday to try to calm investors rattled by the global coronavirus pandemic, but then the market slide continued. The New York Fed said it would pump $1.5 trillion into short-term funding markets over the next two days.

Stocks fell so fast Thursday morning that it triggered a 15-minute halt in trading for the second time this week.

Those indexes are now down at least 24% from record highs set just last month. At 22,074.10 in early afternoon trading, the Dow was down more than 7,400 points from its peak Feb. 12.

Trump has responded to this crash assuring that the markets will be “just fine” and they will bounce back ‘when the time is right”.

NPR: Trump Defends Travel Ban, Says Stock Market Will Bounce Back

President Trump on Thursday defended new restrictions on travelers from most parts of Europe, a decision that angered allies and trading partners, was questioned by some public health experts, and sent stock markets reeling.

Trump told reporters that he viewed the ban as one way to protect Americans from the virus spreading, and he predicted the stock market would eventually bounce back. “It’s not important compared to life and death,” Trump said in the Oval Office.

Breaking news: The number of confirmed cases of coronavirus in Italy has risen to 15,113 from 12,462 on Wednesday, officials say.

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67 Comments

  1. New Zealand will be affected by Trump’s speech and actions, and not just on stock market here (The NZX was already down 5% yesterday).

    Travel industry in tailspin

    NZ’s travel industry is scrambling to re-route Kiwi fliers after Trump abruptly announced a new ban for Europe.

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/health/coronavirus/120228591/coronavirus-new-zealands-travel-industry-sent-into-tailspin-over-trumps-ban

    Air New Zealand, like airlines around the world, were already severely affected by the virus, and things look more dire for them and the whole travel industry now. Cruise ships must be struggling in particular.

    Auckland, Rotorua, Queenstown and other tourist areas have already been hit hard.

    Reply
  2. Reply
    • David

       /  13th March 2020

      The US has been terrible in getting its testing done, they are so bureaucratic and so fearful of costly lawsuits or political prosecutions it stops them getting their bleep together. Trump could have cut through that nonsense and tore up the rules put in place by the previous administration.
      I

      Reply
  3. David

     /  13th March 2020

    We should follow suit and close our borders to all Europeans.
    China is about to go below Italy,s infection rate latest figures are 18,800 in China are infected currently. Merkel and Lagarde both are saying this virus needs to go through the population and for 80% of people that will be a minor illness, clearly Trump finds this unacceptable and shut the border as clearly parts of European elitists are too aloof to care or are more worried about the economy than people.

    Reply
    • “We should follow suit and close our borders to all Europeans.”

      Why? The virus seems to be effectively contained here. Our big problem is the economic effects of business and especially tourism downturns. Closing our borders would likely not effect the spread of the virus (no new cases this week) but would have a more drastic effect on business.

      Reply
      • David

         /  13th March 2020

        We dont have it here because we shut off the Chinese early. The outbreak has just moved to Europe so logically we should stop it from there and I say this as a part owner of a Queenstown Hotel who is getting smacked hard but I would prefer old and unwell people not to have to die just so I can make a quarterly profit.
        This will pass and we are blessed by distance and season so if we can keep this at bay for as long as possible and hopefully there will be therapeutic interventions that improve outcomes.
        At the moment its just the tourism industry affected, if the virus hits big here then its all of the economy that will be affected, the state can mitigate the affect on the tourism industry more easily than if the affects are widespread. We are largely staffed by visitors on temp work permits not by NZers with family commitments prevelant in other industries.

        Reply
        • “At the moment its just the tourism industry affected”

          That’s wide enough, and a ban on travel from Europe would impact more, but it’s far from limited to that. It’s affecting importers and exporters and retailers. Also education.

          I’m in the IT industry and I know of business trips to the US cancelled.

          Everyone with Kiwisaver accounts are affected, especially those wanting to access their funds to buy houses now.

          Reply
          • David

             /  13th March 2020

            I care more about people being able to stay alive than short term economic pain in one sector. Mate works in shipping and China is starting to open up again.
            Our economy is in pretty good shape and we can survive the tourism industry grinding to a halt for the next 6 months given we are just heading in to the very quiet shoulder season, bookings drop 50% for April May June and if we dont get a ski season then it goes right through to November.
            Be nice if more domestic tourists got out and about.

            Reply
    • What Trump says is contradictory. He claims the US has been the best at containing and combating the virus, but has then taken drastic action to try to contain and combat it.

      And why exclude the UK, who expect a surge in cases? It looks more like rewarding mates and punishing perceived enemies, which is how Trump has always operated. Irrational and ineffective.

      Reply
      • David

         /  13th March 2020

        Why pick out Trump ? What about what is happening over the EU, what has the Spanish PM said given they have more infections than all of the US. What about the early Italian response and their PMs comments just before a 1000 of his citizens dies and he had to lock his country down.
        The rest of the world gets a pass while there is a Trump pile on. Sure he aint perfect but who has been.

        Reply
        • Duker

           /  13th March 2020

          The US market plunged after Trumps move …what does that tell you.
          Trump 2 weeks ago was calling it all a hoax …now its drastic measures …doesnt make sense , but then Trump never does. Just this time its really serious.
          Not impossible that Trump will reverse himself in the next few days as hes often does. A Total Clown

          Reply
          • David

             /  13th March 2020

            Just shows Trump cares more about peoples lives than what the gamblers on Wall St care about which is mainly enriching themselves.

            Reply
            • David, that’s a batshit crazy statement that has no grounding whatsoever in reality.

              The whole sorry state of America (which is dragging the rest of the world down with it) right now has occurred because Trump has put the economy and his re-election hopes first.

              If he seriously cared about peoples lives then he would have announced initiatives like these:
              – free COVID-19 testing for everyone who needs a test
              – paid emergency leave for workers
              – enhanced un employment insurance
              – strengthened food security initiatives
              – clear protection for frontline workers
              – increased federal funds for Medicaid

            • Duker

               /  13th March 2020

              This was Trumps statement just one day previously
              Trump had insisted, “It will go away” if everyone just remains calm
              https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8097025/Just-stay-calm-away-Donald-Trump-tries-reassure-Americans-coronavirus.html

            • Duker

               /  13th March 2020

              In Congress the GOP is resisting CV-19 measures …unless they get something in return over abortion.
              Really !

            • David

               /  13th March 2020

              Trump when asked said he doesnt care what wall st does he is doing what he has for the american people. True there are more votes on main st than wall st.
              Just because you want something to be doesnt make it necessarily so. You have plenty of ammunition not sure why you have to cling to the fake ones.

        • ohhh, all the nasty people picking on poor Donnie?

          Here’s why:
          January 22:
          Trump: “We have it totally under control. It’s one person coming in from China. It’s going to be just fine.”

          February 2:
          Trump: “We pretty much shut it down coming in from China.”

          February 10:
          Trump: “A lot of people think that goes away in April with the heat—as the heat comes in.”

          White House acting budget director Russell Vought: “Coronavirus is not something that is going to have ripple effects.”

          February 24:
          Trump: “The Coronavirus is very much under control in the USA. . . . Stock Market starting to look very good to me.”

          Trump’s top economic adviser, Larry Kudlow: “You should seriously consider buying these [stock market] dips”

          [Note: The Dow Jones ended February 24 at 27,960. It closed March 11 at 23,553.]

          February 26:
          Trump: “[The number of people infected is] going very substantially down, not up.” “The 15 [cases] within a couple of days, is going to be down to zero.” [Note: Two weeks later, as we compiled this list on March 11, there were over 1,000 confirmed cases in the United States.]

          February 27:
          Trump: “It’s going to disappear one day, it’s like a miracle.”

          February 28:
          Eric Trump: “In my opinion, it’s a great time to buy stocks or into your 401k. I would be all in . . . let’s see if I’m right.” [Note: The stock market closed at 25,409 on February 28. It closed at 23,553 on March 11.]

          March 2:
          Trump on a coronavirus vaccine: “I’ve heard very quick numbers, that of months.” [Note: Immunologist Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, has repeatedly said that a vaccine will not be available for a year or year and a half.]

          March 6:
          Trump: “I like this stuff. I really get it. People are surprised that I understand it. . . . Every one of these doctors said, ‘How do you know so much about this?’ Maybe I have a natural ability. Maybe I should have done that instead of running for president.”

          Trump: “I didn’t know people died from the flu.”

          Trump on whether or not to bring coronavirus patients on a cruise ship to shore: “I like the numbers being where they are.”

          Trump: “Anybody who wants a test gets a test.” [Note. This was a lie at the time and remains dangerously untrue today. The previous day, Vice President Mike Pence said, “We don’t have enough tests today to meet what we anticipate will be the demand going forward.”]

          Larry Kudlow: “We stopped it, it was a very early shut down, I would still argue to you that this thing is contained.”

          Larry Kudlow: “Investors should think about buying these dips.” [Note: The Dow Jones closed at 25,864 on March 6, over 2,300 points lower than the previous time Kudlow suggested investors “buy the dip.”]

          March 9:
          Trump: “Good for the consumer, gasoline prices coming down!”

          Trump: “So last year 37,000 Americans died from the common Flu. It averages between 27,000 and 70,000 per year. Nothing is shut down, life & the economy go on. At this moment there are 546 confirmed cases of CoronaVirus, with 22 deaths.”

          March 10:
          Trump: “It will go away. Just stay calm. It will go away.”

          March 11:
          Trump: “If we get rid of the coronavirus problem quickly, we won’t need [economic] stimulus.”

          Trump [in response to a question from CNN’s Jim Acosta asking what he would “say to Americans who say you are not taking this seriously enough and that some of your statements don’t match what health experts are saying”]: “That’s CNN. Fake news.”

          March 12:
          Trump: “We have ’em very heavily tested. If an American’s coming back, or anybody’s coming back, we’re testing. We have a tremendous testing setup where people coming in have to be tested. And if they are positive, and if they’re able to get through—because, frankly, if they’re not, we’re not putting them on planes, if it shows positive…” [Note. This is not true.]

          ——————-

          These are all direct and declarative statements that Trump and his enablers have made amidst an ongoing outbreak — a national emergency and global pandemic — that required the U.S. government to be transparent, forthcoming, and responsive.

          Reply
      • NOEL

         /  13th March 2020

        The ban is not Europe wide. On those countries that have open border in the EU.
        https://www.dhs.gov/news/2020/03/11/homeland-security-acting-secretary-chad-f-wolf-s-statement-presidential-proclamation

        Reply
      • Alan Wilkinson

         /  13th March 2020

        It’s not contradictory to say you are successful internally but need to increase protection against external threats. That’s probably our own situation too.

        The big problem seems to be the infectious stage peaking around the onset of first symptoms. That really means treating nearly everyone as potentially contagious.

        Reply
    • Blazer

       /  13th March 2020

      Covid19 has lit the fuse for a bear market ,that will make your eyes water.

      Elastic money supply and low interest rates have disguised a misallocation of funds that has been evident since the GFC.

      It will be interesting to see if the ‘medicine’ of the survival of efficient business over inefficient models is applied.

      Somehow I doubt it….socialise the losses will be ramped up..again!

      Reply
  4. Remember folks, Trump said it was a hoax. He knew it was a deadly virus that was on the verge of becoming a pandemic and called it a hoax.

    When the first case appeared in America he called it a hoax.

    When it started spreading he called it a hoax.

    The National Guard has now been sent into neighbourhoods in New York to help manage the crisis there. Trump called that crisis a hoax.

    The NBA has just suspended its entire season – Trump called the crisis a hoax.

    When the media raised concerns about the inadequate response from Trump’s administration, he called it a media hoax.

    When the media pointed out that Trump’s statements conflicted directly with the statements of health experts, Trump called it fake news.

    Literally, the best thing Trump could do right now is to shut up and let the few functional adults who remain in his administration handle this.

    Reply
    • Duker

       /  13th March 2020

      New York is one outer suburb that a hotspot, 100 plus cases. New Rochelle where the outbreak begun with a jewish temple.
      The idea is a mini quarantine zone. It doesnt stop the spread but thats not the aim, instead its to slow it all down so the health system – from GPs to ICU- isnt overwhelmed like it has in Northern Italy

      Reply
    • David

       /  13th March 2020

      He didnt call it a hoax, that one has been dispelled by even the left wing fact checkers. He said it was the next democrat hoax after the russia and Ukraine one.
      His speech was pretty rubbish yesterday with errors surely you have enough to critique with out making it up

      Reply
      • duperez

         /  13th March 2020

        Views differ about what the hoax call meant. When you’re a stable genius, a great orator to boot, and knowing that every word and inflection is going to be scrutinised to the nth degree, you have to expect that after the examination of words people will have their say.

        “Trump had said at a rally (emphasis ours):

        “Now the Democrats are politicizing the coronavirus. You know that, right? Coronavirus. They’re politicizing it. We did one of the great jobs . . . They tried the impeachment hoax. That was on a perfect conversation. They tried anything, they tried it over and over, they’ve been doing it since you got in. It’s all turning, they lost, it’s all turning. Think of it. Think of it. And this is their new hoax. But you know, we did something that’s been pretty amazing. We’re 15 people [cases of coronavirus infection] in this massive country. And because of the fact that we went early, we went early, we could have had a lot more than that . . . we’ve lost nobody, and you wonder, the press is in hysteria mode.“
        It’s hard to tell exactly what Trump means here. He could be calling coronavirus a hoax, concerns about its severity a hoax or Democrats’ criticism of his response a hoax.”

        https://techcrunch.com/2020/03/03/trump-coronavirus-hoax-fact-check/

        Is that was a stable genius orator trying to suggest that coronavirus was a Democrat hoax but doing it in a way to give wriggle room? Or just an orator getting slightly tangled in his own brilliance and showmanship?

        Reply
    • This is Trump’s hoax comment.

      “Now the Democrats are politicizing the coronavirus. You know that, right? Coronavirus. They’re politicizing it. We did one of the great jobs . . . They tried the impeachment hoax. That was on a perfect conversation. They tried anything, they tried it over and over, they’ve been doing it since you got in. It’s all turning, they lost, it’s all turning. Think of it. Think of it. And this is their new hoax. But you know, we did something that’s been pretty amazing. We’re 15 people [cases of coronavirus infection] in this massive country. And because of the fact that we went early, we went early, we could have had a lot more than that . . . we’ve lost nobody, and you wonder, the press is in hysteria mode.“

      https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/trump-coronavirus-rally-remark/

      So in typically confusing fashion he seems to have referred to criticisms of his mishandling of the virus as another Democrat hoax. Which is really as silly as directly calling the virus a hoax.

      He was somewhat premature with his claims to have just 15 cases and no loss of life. Time will tell whether what he has done is pretty amazing or not. What he says is unamazingly confusing and self obsessed.

      Reply
      • Alan Wilkinson

         /  13th March 2020

        That pretty much destroys Ishmael’s hoax hoax doesn’t it.

        As for his claim of equity destruction, ignore that. Markets will do what they do, dependent on information from all sources and actions from all actors. In this situation both are global not local.

        Most likely the travel ban will buy some time at some cost. Hopefully that time will be used wisely.

        Reply
    • Pink David

       /  13th March 2020

      “Trump said it was a hoax. ”

      Why do you keep repeating this lie?

      Reply
      • duperez

         /  13th March 2020

        Definitely a lie. I’ve seen the video enough times. Pete even got confused, claiming Trump said, “And this is their new hoax.” He said something about toast didn’t he? Or wokes. Or maybe he said ‘life’s like a box of jokes.’ 😂

        Reply
      • Duker

         /  13th March 2020

        Thats because in the context of his words and what he also said later . It isnt a lie

        What about ““It will go away” if everyone just remains calm” Do you deny he said that later?

        You are just trying to deconstruct his earlier hoax comments . Again the context is that he was saying the Democrats were raising the alarm over ‘something thats a hoax’
        Russian interference in election – a hoax
        Mueller investigation – a hoax
        Ukraine qui pro quo – a hoax

        See a pattern here , but this time Trump is hung on his own petard. Not that denying something he previously said is new to him, just this time the trumpanzees are doing the diversions

        Reply
        • Alan Wilkinson

           /  13th March 2020

          Again the context is that he was saying the Democrats were raising the alarm over ‘something thats a hoax’

          No it isn’t. It’s clear from PG’s comment that he was saying the Dem MSM’s allegations that he mishandled the crisis was a hoax like their allegation he made a deal with the Russians.

          Reply
        • Pink David

           /  13th March 2020

          “Russian interference in election – a hoax
          Mueller investigation – a hoax
          Ukraine qui pro quo – a hoax

          Perhaps there is a downside to bombarding a President with hoaxes then?

          “See a pattern here ”

          Yes. Make up a dozen fake crisis to try and remove the President means the real crisis is disregarded until too late. Perhaps someone should have created a fable to warn about this or something.

          Reply
      • read PGs very first para and take it up with him.

        Reply
  5. duperez

     /  13th March 2020

    One address wasn’t going to change the division over Donald Trump’s performance as president. What it was going to do in circumstances like this was demonstrate the level of leadership in the one invested with the power.

    If you go into a room full of people to choose a leader for a project, the qualities you seek in the candidates will be in the front of your mind.

    Generally you’ll want someone who can see the whole picture, have flexibility in the way they think, can adapt to changing circumstances and get the best out of the best they’ll work with.

    Someone whose prime measure of success is in the achievement of the agreed goals rather than personal aggrandisement is important. You don’t want someone who has too narrow view or no sense of the ramifications of actions or who won’t listen to those with knowledge and expertise. Someone whose default modus operandi is bullying when faced with the slightest of a different opinion is likely not ideal.

    Absolutely tacit will be you don’t want an idiot, a fool.

    Reply
  6. Zedd

     /  13th March 2020

    MrTs whole plan is about ‘how can I get richer & more powerful’. IF he was really concerned about ALL Americans, he would bring in universal Med-care; instead he supports Privatise everything & maximise the profits for his rich mates.. regardless of the impact on those who just cant afford it

    btw: I also hear that Biden said he would veto attempts to introduce such a program ! :/ 😦

    Reply
    • Only Bernie Sanders is promising universal health care. And he’s a lunatic. It would be absolutely impossible to implement federally for 330 million people when the US has already got the best quality healthcare in the world, and coverage for poor people, veterans and seniors. And it would involve massive tax hikes in a country where 53% of the population pay no net tax.

      You may not have noticed this, but Trump has no “rich mates”. They all support his opponent. There is also nothing to privatize. Your comment makes no sense at all.

      Reply
      • Corky

         /  13th March 2020

        Zedds old Labour, Blair. Add that to his views on herb, and I think he will need some slack to collect his muddled thoughts.😊

        Reply
        • Zedd

           /  13th March 2020

          gee thx corky…… :/

          btw.. ‘Blair’ methinks MrT only has RICH mates.. the rest are fools who; actually believe the B-S he says.. as if he really cares about them ! 😀

          Reply
      • Duker

         /  13th March 2020

        Its certainly the highest cost healthcare in the world but as nationwide produces the lowest outcomes.
        Even for people who are insured they find that they can still get a massive bill , as their plan is limited for what it covers or they have limits on hospital and doctor charges.
        Part of the current federal government cost that is hidden is the Company paid health care coverage which is a deductible for tax reasons. Its a loss of taxes of something like $50-75 billion per year

        So the idea that its best quality doesnt mean anything for those who dont have coverage or can afford standard plans.
        Its nonsense to say Trump has no rich mates, the US has a lot of very rich people and most support Trump and republicans

        Reply
        • You don’t know what you are talking about. I live here.

          90% of people have adequate healthcare coverage. Most that don’t are self employed or wealthy.

          Of the top 50 political contributors, most are Democrats.

          Don’t talk about things you know nothing about.

          Reply
          • Duker

             /  13th March 2020

            You are a trumpanzee full of the same lies as he is. Even those with insurance can be bankrupted by a major emergency by Non insured costs.
            As I said there’s probably 250 billionaires in US only a handful are democrats

            Reply
      • ‘Your comment makes no sense at all.’ sez BMH

        I say ditto to urz too

        Reply
  7. Duker

     /  13th March 2020

    Apparently Trump even though he was reading from the teleprompter fluffed his lines

    ban on ALL U.S. travel to and from Europe for the next 30 days

    “Trump did explicitly say that his ban would apply to “the tremendous amount of trade and cargo” between the U. S. and Europe.
    That aspect of the restriction in particular seemed to send market futures tumbling, as companies faced the prospect of not only being locked out of markets, but of also being trapped without access to parts and products necessary for factories to operate in the United States.

    “But minutes after Trump left the Oval Office, the White House issued two enormous clarifications.
    First, the White House declared that the ban was on human travel only, and that those wanting to move cargo and goods need not be concerned.
    and again…
    “White House clarified that the ban did not apply to U.S. citizens or permanent residents. So Americans are still free to fly to and from Europe as they please …

    And some wonder why theres been a massive pile-on to Trump and a stock market plunge

    And why not when Trump was live spreading fake version of his own speech from the Oval Office

    Reply
  8. Alan Wilkinson

     /  13th March 2020

    Oh dear, “Let’s take a tour group to Italy in the middle of a global pandemic centred there”:
    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=12316316

    Reply
  9. David

     /  13th March 2020

    Norway has shut its borders and pretty much shut down the country as well. I guess the Norwegian PM wont receive the Trump treatment despite cancelling overseas travel for health workers. Denmark has pretty much done the same thing and Macron said he would shut Frances borders if the EU would let him. Poland and Slovakia almost shut too.
    Condemn Trump and then quietly do what he did, classy. Merkel is taking the germanic approach and informing the country most will be infected and a some will die and then lets get back to making BMWs asap.

    Reply
  10. Remember when the Dow crashed and Obama said “I got this,” then H1N1 hit and people panicked but Obama said “didn’t I just say it got this?” then Ebola hit and Obama said “I told y’all I got this,” then stocks soared and everyone got free health care?

    Anyway (sigh)
    Good times…

    Reply
    • David

       /  13th March 2020

      I guess the 60 million Americans might feel differently let alone the families of the 13000 odd that died from it. Fond memories of No Drama Obama I guess. He was lucky it died out quickly because he did jack shit but he did look presidential.

      Reply
      • duperez

         /  13th March 2020

        Is there any significant difference between doing jack shit but looking presidential and doing jack shit and not looking presidential? Just in case, I tried to find references as I have no knowledge of these things.🙃

        “Trump repeats lie from Sean Hannity about Obama and the H1N1 flu.

        As Media Matters has previously documented, Hannity and other right-wing personalities and outlets have circulated a lie that the Obama administration had done nothing about H1N1 — waiting six months to declare a national emergency, they say — while Americans died in vast numbers. In fact, this is totally false, and it also relies on obfuscations based around bureaucratic terms of art and specific effects on government regulations.”

        https://www.mediamatters.org/coronavirus-covid-19/trump-repeats-lie-sean-hannity-about-obama-and-h1n1-flu

        “CLAIM: President Barack Obama waited until October 2009 to declare a national health emergency amid the H1N1 pandemic after 20,000 people in the U.S. were hospitalized and more than 1,000 had died.

        AP’S ASSESSMENT: False. Obama declared a public health emergency in April 2009, after roughly 20 cases of the flu strain, more commonly known as swine flu, emerged. He declared a national emergency in October 2009.

        THE FACTS: Social media posts are falsely claiming that the former president waited months to respond with a public health emergency declaration to the flu strain known as H1N1. The posts are conflating two types of emergency declarations a president can make.

        Obama declared a public health emergency on April 26, 2009 _ before a single swine flu death in the U.S. was reported. Such a declaration allows the government to unlock money for antiviral drugs and other medical preparedness measures. By April 29, Obama had requested Congress approve a $1.5 billion emergency funding package to combat the pandemic, The Associated Press reported at the time.

        It was in October, after 1,000 U.S. deaths, that Obama made another declaration related to the flu strain; this time a national emergency.”

        https://apnews.com/afs:Content:8603491796

        Reply
  11. Stepping aside from the politics for a moment, here’s a link to a photo essay on how the world is responding to COVID-19. I’ve been to some of these places and it’s hard to conceive of them being as empty as the photos show…

    https://www.huffpost.com/entry/heres-the-latest-images-from-around-the-world-as-countries-respond-to-the-coronavirus_n_5e6a6deac5b6bd8156f3687f

    Reply
  12. There’s a surprising number of prominent people testing positive for the virus in different parts of the world. As many people have negligible or trivial symptoms that can easily be mistaken for a cold, I wonder if there are many more people with the virus than are being tested and counted.

    Reply
    • Someone else with the same thought:

      Reply
    • David

       /  13th March 2020

      Britains health minister caught it, Brazils President is being tested and there are quite a few Iranian politicians infected.

      Reply
    • Pink David

       /  13th March 2020

      Will anyone notice?

      Reply
      • Kitty Catkin

         /  13th March 2020

        It shows that for most people it’s not that serious, doesn’t it ?

        Reply
  13. David

     /  13th March 2020

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/health/coronavirus/120246639/coronavirus-shut-new-zealands-borders-says-zuru-toy-company-executive

    Lets take some short term pain to save a prolonged problem and unnecessary deaths. Inbound tourism is only 7% of GDP and if Kiwis cant travel they will spend the 10 billion on overseas holidays at home offsetting that. We have shortages elsewhere in the economy we can deploy people too.

    Reply
    • David

       /  13th March 2020

      India is now shut but we are taking Indians ! makes zero sense.

      Reply
      • Alan Wilkinson

         /  13th March 2020

        India is worried it has so few resources to cope with its population if it gets infected. We don’t have the same level of that problem.

        Reply
  14. Alan Wilkinson

     /  13th March 2020

    A reality check for the Trump abusers. How the decision was actually made:
    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-03-12/inside-the-oval-office-a-fierce-fight-over-trump-s-virus-speech

    And of course Bloomberg’s owner is a political opponent of Trump.

    Reply
  15. Griff.

     /  13th March 2020

    Fuck.
    Europe is not the problem.
    Anyone with half a brain would now it is where there is no testing and little health care .
    Have a look at the global infection rates.
    https://www.arcgis.com/apps/opsdashboard/index.html#/bda7594740fd40299423467b48e9ecf6
    Places like India Pakistan Indonesia are reporting very low cases for their populations.
    Becuse in such places places only the elites can afford health care.
    It is the ones you dont see that will get ya .

    Reply

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