It’s under control as much as you can control it

He’s bumpity-bumping down the stairs.

Donald Trump stumbled through his second damaging interview in as many weeks, floundering in a conversation with the news website Axios over key issues he is tasked with responding to as president.

In a lengthy discussion about the US’s poor response to coronavirus, Trump described the pandemic as “under control”.

Swan responded: “How? A thousand Americans are dying a day.”

“They are dying. That’s true. And you – it is what it is,” Trump said. “But that doesn’t mean we aren’t doing everything we can. It’s under control as much as you can control it.”

Ohhhhhhhhhh I see, “under control” means “as under control as we can get it, which is zero, because we’re not trying, and in fact we’re trying to make it worse.” That explains a lot.

The president then appeared unable to distinguish between different measurements of coronavirus deaths.

Trump brandished several pieces of paper with graphs and charts.

“United States is lowest in numerous categories. We’re lower than the world. Lower than Europe.”

“In what?” Swan asked. As it becomes apparent that Trump is talking about the number of deaths as a proportion of confirmed Covid-19 cases, Swan said: “Oh, you’re doing death as a proportion of cases. I’m talking about death as a proportion of population. That’s where the US is really bad. Much worse than Germany, South Korea.”

Trump responded: “You can’t do that.”

We can and we have to.

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