The 25th hour

Yes, he really did say it. Here he is saying it.

CNN has more:

President Donald Trump is hoping for a “miracle” that will make the coronavirus disappear but tanking stock markets and signs the disease is stalking America are delivering their verdict on his scattershot management of the crisis.

“It’s going to disappear. One day it’s like a miracle, it will disappear,” Trump said at the White House Thursday as the virus marched across Asia and Europe after US officials said the US should brace for severe disruption to everyday life.

The President also warned that things could “get worse before it gets better,” but he added it could “maybe go away. We’ll see what happens. Nobody really knows.”

Yes but just “seeing what happens” is not going to cut it. There are things people have to do – like wearing protective gear around infected people. Miracle-awaiting passivity is not our only or best option.

There are also signs that the White House is more concerned with its political plight than the burgeoning crisis.

An order for public health officials to clear all television appearances with the White House meanwhile raised the question of whether Trump will prioritize science as the threat from coronavirus rises or his own political standing.

That right there? That’s the wrong kind of action. Preventing public health officials from informing us is not the way to go. Error, error, return to starting position.

As television news channels devoted wall-to-wall coverage to the coronavirus, government public health officials were nowhere to be seen. Sources told CNN that all media appearances have to now be cleared with Pence’s office. The move could deprive Americans of sober, science-based advice from some of the best public health experts in the world.

Could? Almost certainly will, unless someone reverses the order.

CNN has reported that Trump has been angered that government health experts have contradicted his attempts to downplay the threat from the virus by saying it is all but “inevitable” the US will be affected and there will be severe disruption.

The revelation will do little to quell suspicions that Trump is trying to suppress damaging information to pacify the markets and protect himself politically and gets to the fundamental issue of the administration’s squandering of public trust. His acting chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, acknowledged to the Conservative Political Action Conference on Friday that potential disruptions to everyday life, such as school closures and impacts on public transportation, are likely. But his advice to people worried about the market reaction to the outbreak was to “tell people to turn their televisions off for 24 hours.”

Yeah, that’s the ticket, don’t do anything, just stick your head in the sand for 24 hours – on the 25th hour everything will be fine again!

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