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During this time of pandemic anxiety and death, it’s easy to forget the nightmare presidency that has led up to this crisis and enormously exacerbated its effects. Remembering that Donald is a literal criminal, multiple times over, can mitigate tragedies of this magnitude in the future. You know the old saying: Those who refuse to learn the lessons of redundancy are doomed to repeat it. Again. Besides allowing thousands of needless, lonely viral deaths, President Trump is still “Individual No. 1.” His inaugural committee took illegal foreign money and still can’t account for it. He obstructed justice at least 10 times and dangled pardons to keep the rats quiet. He openly witness-tampered. He committed perjury. He has profited illegally from the presidency. He’s a serial sexual predator with several criminal cases pending. His keep-hidden-at-any-cost tax records are widely believed to buttress evidence of financial crimes. And he shook down Ukraine to get illegal, false dirt on his presidential opponent. But his invertebrate GOP buds in Congress thought that one should slide. (scroll down for full article)

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— RECENT HEADLINES –
“PANDEMIC: Trump Reopening Plan: 1) No ‘national’ May 1; 2) No Nat’l Testing Push, States on Their Own; 3) Defers to States After Advisers Warned King-Like Order of Unilateral Reopening Would Backfire Upon Virus Resurgence, He Would Be Blamed; Also, Advisers Mentioned Constitution” (4/16/2020)
“PANDEMIC: Long-Term Care, Nursing Home Deaths Spiking at Shocking Rates” (4/16/2020)
“PANDEMIC: Non-Experts, Drs. Phil, Oz, Support WH, Say Reopening Worth Some Deaths” (4/16/2020)
“PANDEMIC: Trump Undermines Stay-at-Home Orders in 3 Dem Governors’ States, Tweet-Supports Anti-Shutdown Protesters: ‘LIBERATE MI, VA, MN’; Tacitly Supports More Deaths in Corrupt Plan to Push Public Support for Premature Reopening of U.S. Economy to Help Reelection” (4/17/2020)
“PANDEMIC: Trump’s Own Drs. Say ‘Liberate’ Tweets Undermine WH Recommendations” (4/17/2020)
“PANDEMIC: Trump, Entire Admin. Knew Everything WHO Knew Right From Beginning” (4/17/2020)
“PANDEMIC: Many GOP Govs. Refuse Science, Favor Bus.; Non-Shutdowns Causing Death” (4/18/2020)
“PANDEMIC: Trump Unglued, Blaming Dem Govs., Blaming China, Total Lack of Leadership” (4/19/2020)
“PANDEMIC: Nearly 10M Have Lost Health Ins. Due to Job Loss, 28M Never Had It” (4/19/2020)
“PANDEMIC: WH Blessed Private Shipment of Millions of Masks to China in Early 2020” (4/19/2020)
“PANDEMIC: Harvard Study: Must Triple Current Testing Rate to Reopen Country Safely” (4/19/2020)
“PANDEMIC: NBC/WSJ Poll: 2/3 Say Trump Didn’t Take Virus Serious Enough, Say They Trust Govs. More Than Trump, Say it’s Much too Soon to Reopen Country” (4/20/2020)
“ECONOMY: WH, Admin. Has Badly Bungled Small Bus. Paycheck Protection Loan Program” (4/20/2020)
“PANDEMIC: Trump Says Testing Criticism (Not Enough) Is ‘mostly partisan’” (4/20/2020)
“PANDEMIC: Trump to Suspend Legal Immigration Temporarily Due to Virus” (4/21/2020)
“Unanimous GOP Senate Report Confirms: Russia Investigation NOT Biased Against Trump” (4/21/2020)
“PANDEMIC: U.S. New Single Day Death Toll Record: 2,674” (4/21/2020)
“PANDEMIC:1st U.S. Deaths Earlier Than Thought, Feb. 6, 17, Indicating Worse Spread” (4/22/2020)
“PANDEMIC: CDC Head, Robert Redfield, Warns 2nd Wave, w/ Flu Epidemic, Could Be More Catastrophic; Trump Claims CDC Head Was Misquoted, Redfield Said He was Quoted Accurately” (4/22/2020)
“PANDEMIC: Trump Unsuccessfully Pressures Own Drs. to Say Virus Won’t Return in Fall” (4/22/2020)
“PANDEMIC: Anti-Shutdown Protests Pushed by Big$ Trump Support to Bump Economy” (4/22/2020)
“ECONOMY: Senate Passes $484B Aid for Small Bus., Hospitals, Testing; Pres. Will Sign” (4/22/2020)
“PANDEMIC: GA Gov. Kemp Taunting Death, Reopening State w/ Poor Testing, No Decline” (4/22/2020)
“PANDEMIC: Trump Fires Rick Bright, Head of U.S. Vaccine Development, for Insisting, Only Internally, That Hydroxychloroquine (Heavily Pushed by Trump, Fox, for False Hope and Likely for Profit) Be Properly, Scientifically Vetted Before Use; Bright Files Whistleblower Complaint” (4/22/2020)
“PANDEMIC: In Trials, Hydroxychloroquine Resulting in More Deaths Than Placebos” (4/22/2020)
“PANDEMIC: Nursing Home, Long-Term Care Cases, Deaths Exploding; Trump Ignores” (4/22/2020)
“PANDEMIC: Meat-Packing Cases, Deaths Exploding; Many GOP Govs. Still Refuse to Close” (4/22/2020)
“ECONOMY: U.S. Jobless Claims: This Week, 4.4M; 5-Week Total, 26M” (4/23/2020)
“PANDEMIC: Trump Reverses Self, Says GA Governor Opening Up State Economy too Early” (4/23/2020)
“PANDEMIC: U.S./World: 842,624/2,647,512 Cases; 46,785/184,372 Deaths; 8:48 a.m. EST” (4/23/2020)

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COVID-19 Deaths

2/06/2020 — U.S.: 1  |  World: 620
2/17/2020 — U.S.: 2  |  World: 1,873
2/29/2020 — U.S.: 3  |  World: 2,976
3/05/2020 — U.S.: 12  |  World: 3,293
3/12/2020 — U.S.: 38  |  World: 4,717
3/19/2020 — U.S.: 150  |  World: 9,115
3/26/2020 — U.S.: 1,046  |  World: 22,030
4/02/2020 — U.S.: 5,137  |  World: 48,284
4/09/2020 — U.S.: 14,808  |  World: 89,435
4/16/2020 — U.S.: 30,985  |  World: 138,008
4/23/2020 — U.S.: 46,785  |  World: 184,372

(COVID-19 Dashboard by the Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins University; approximately 8 a.m. each day)

Prologue

During this time of pandemic anxiety and death, it’s easy to forget the nightmare presidency that has led up to this crisis and enormously exacerbated its effects. Some pundits like to proclaim now is not the time to analyze how we got here. I say evaluating and loudly criticizing this president’s incompetence and corruption is the only thing pushing him anywhere near a semblance of right direction.

Remembering that Donald is a literal criminal, multiple times over, can mitigate tragedies of this magnitude in the future. You know the old saying: Those who refuse to learn the lessons of redundancy are doomed to repeat it. Again. (— thanks to 21st century American philosopher Rob Emanuel)

Besides being willing to allow tens of thousands of Americans to die needless, lonely viral deaths, President Trump also, still is guilty of myriad provable crimes. He is “Individual No. 1” in the Michael Cohen campaign finance investigation. His inaugural committee took illegal foreign money and still can’t account for it. During the Mueller investigation, he obstructed justice at least 10 times, including secretly and openly dangling pardons to keep the rats quiet. He openly witness-tampered. He committed perjury. He has illegally profited from the presidency. He’s a serial sexual predator with several criminal cases pending. His keep-hidden-at-any-cost tax records are widely believed to buttress evidence of financial crimes.

And he shook down Ukraine, extorting its president to get illegal, false dirt on his presidential opponent. But his invertebrate GOP buds in Congress thought that one should slide.




Unindictable Crimes Against Humanity

“[Dr. Phil] acknowledged that the novel coronavirus is killing Americans — more than 33,000 as of early Friday — but also wondered why the economy would shut down over the pandemic but continues to function as people die from lung cancer, car crashes, and pool drownings. (Unlike coronavirus, none of the causes of death listed by Dr. Phil are contagious.) ‘We don’t shut the country down for that,’ said Dr. Phil, after he cited inaccurate statistics on accidental deaths. ‘Yet we are doing it for this.’”

(Shepherd, Katie; “After Fauci Urged Caution in Reopening the Economy, Fox News Turned to Dr. Phil for a Second Opinion”; The Washington Post; 4/17/2020.)

Note that another infamous non-virologist expert and TV doctor, Mehmet Oz, said in the same week that getting American children back in school to make the most out of their lives “may only cost us 2% to 3% in terms of total mortality [and] that might be a trade-off some folks would consider.”

Presidential Unindictable Crimes Against Humanity

“President Donald Trump urged supporters to [protest] against stay-at-home restrictions. … A day after laying out a road map to gradually reopen the crippled economy, Trump tweeted the kind of rhetoric some of his supporters have used to demand the lifting of the orders that have thrown millions of Americans out of work. ‘LIBERATE MINNESOTA!’ ‘LIBERATE MICHIGAN!’ ‘LIBERATE VIRGINIA,’ he said in a tweet-storm in which he also lashed out at New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo for criticizing the federal response. Cuomo ‘should spend more time “doing” and less time “complaining,”’ the president said.”

(Miller, Zeke & Sedensky, Matt; “Trump Urges Supporters to ‘LIBERATE!’ States With Coronavirus Restrictions a Day After Unveiling Guidelines to Gradually Reopen Economy”; Associated Press; 4/17/2020.)

Never mind that the administration’s own doctors, scientists, and infectious disease experts believe the presidential tweets (there’s an oxymoron) are undermining the White House’s own pandemic recommendations (therefore likely causing increased, unnecessary death).

Lies

“[President Trump accused] the World Health Organization of ‘covering up the spread of the coronavirus’ and … was cutting off funding for the world’s public health body in the middle of a pandemic. … [But] 15 officials from his administration were embedded with the WHO in Geneva, working full time, hand-in-glove with the organization on the virus from the very first day China disclosed the outbreak to the world, Dec. 31. … Everything that the WHO knew, the Trump administration knew — in real time.

(Milbank, Dana; “Trump Tells a Damnable and Murderous Lie”; The Washington Post; 4/17/2020.)

Damn Lies

“For years, President Trump has derided the assessment by American intelligence officials that Russia interfered in the 2016 presidential election to assist his candidacy, dismissing it without evidence as the work of a ‘deep state’ out to undermine his victory. But on Tuesday, a … three-year review by the Republican-led Senate Intelligence Committee unanimously found that the intelligence community assessment, pinning blame on Russia and outlining its goals to undercut American democracy, was fundamentally sound and untainted by politics.”

(Fandos, Nicholas & Barnes, Julian E.; “Republican-Led Review Backs Intelligence Findings on Russian Interference”; The New York Times; 4/21/2020.)

Let me repeat that: “the Republican-led Senate Intelligence Committee unanimously found … untainted by politics.”

Statistics

“A new NBC News-Wall Street Journal poll this weekend showed that fully 65% of Americans say Trump did not take the coronavirus ‘seriously enough at the beginning.’ That echoes a Pew Research Center poll from late last week that showed the same number (65%) said Trump was ‘too slow to take major steps’ to address the situation. In that poll, even one-third of Republicans and GOP-leaning voters conceded that Trump didn’t react quickly enough.”

(Blake, Aaron; “The One Poll Number That Could Haunt Trump on Coronavirus”; The Washington Post; 4/20/2020.)

The Connection

President Donald J. Trump fears indictment and prison if he’s not reelected.

His sole hope for reelection has been the admittedly booming (at least for the markets and the rich) economy, however much he had to stand on Barack Obama’s shoulders to establish it.

Now the economy has entered a colossal crash. It took the blink of an eye for COVID-19 to sink it, but the stock market, unemployment rate, and consumer confidence numbers will take years to recover, certainly not until well beyond Election Day 2020.

The genesis of the pandemic occurred through no fault of Donald’s. But the deadly, corrupt perpetuation of the devastation falls squarely at his feet. I summed up two weeks ago his unindictable crimes of non-action, and those primary points bear repeating:

1) He discounted the virus for two months and still downplays it when he can, encouraging public support for prematurely reopening the economy to jump-start the markets.

2) He won’t nationalize social distancing policy because he fears GOP governors’ and anti-shutdown protesters’ wrath and favors business over lives. He wants to be able to blame governors for a second wave and poor economic performance.

3) He won’t nationalize the supply chain, refusing to interfere with private business, fearing the “socialism” label, while leaving profiteers to leverage states’ desperation.

4) He won’t sufficiently nationalize production (Defense Production Act) for desperately needed supplies and ventilators, fearing the “socialism” label.

5) He won’t sufficiently deploy military medical personnel to desperate private hospitals because he doesn’t want to admit to the country that it’s necessary.

6) He won’t compel needed national testing production and implementation because fewer tests mean lower numbers of cases and deaths, perpetuating the myth that “it’s not that bad, so let’s reopen the country.”

These six points lay out the corruption aspect of Trump’s pandemic response leadership. Now add in the incompetence component: the president and his appointees lack the management skills, intelligence, and compassion necessary to respond. Finally, consider the third leg of the Trumpian stool: amorality. This president is willing to cause many thousands of unnecessary deaths in the gamble to shore up the economy and be reelected.

Of course, any first-term president wants to be reelected. This first-termer also is concerned with staying out of prison.

Remember:

— He is the unindicted “Individual No. 1” in the preelection campaign finance law violation (specifically hush money paid to Trump paramours) for which Donald’s former personal attorney-fixer, Michael Cohen, is serving three years at Federal Correctional Institution in Otisville, New York.

— The exhaustive Mueller (Russian interference into the 2016 election) report detailed at least 10 instances of presidential obstruction of justice. Thousands of former attorneys general, former U.S. attorneys, and constitutional and legal scholars across the country have signed letters stating they believe at least half of those are impeachable offenses, and would be indictable offenses if the president did not enjoy a DOJ OLC presidential exemption — meaning the indictments are possible when he is no longer president.

— The Mueller report also exposed several instances of presidential perjury in Donald’s written answers to investigation questions. Set aside his refusal to give in-person testimony because his lawyers convinced him he’d be constitutionally incapable of avoiding oral perjury.

— The president has several significant emoluments clauses (illegal foreign and domestic self-enrichment from the presidency) cases pending. The number of White House conflicts of interest is astonishing.

— The president has over 20 pending credible accusations of sexual assault and misconduct, and several of those are making their way through the courts.

— The president is deathly afraid of his tax records becoming public. Among speculative reasons: 1) He’s worth far less than he has boasted about for decades; and 2) His tax returns will provide or buttress evidence of financial crimes.

— The Trump inaugural committee still is under investigation for facilitating and accepting illegal foreign contributions, missing funds, and financial malfeasance.

— Finally, we could all have fun chalking up the things like extorting Ukraine for dirt on Trump’s likely 2020 presidential opponent, and the many other crimes he has gotten away with.

Epilogue

Now that his pandemic response poll numbers are upside down by 2:1, President Trump is upping the defensive lies and prompting even more unnecessary death.

This week he said his CDC director was misquoted in The Washington Post saying the pandemic will resurge more harshly in the fall, combined with the seasonal flu outbreak. Donald did this to create false hope. He wants the electorate to ignore his own White House health recommendations and get back to work so his economic numbers will rise by Election Day. Minutes after Donald’s press briefing lie, Director Redfield answered a reporter’s question: “Yes, I was quoted accurately.”

Trump tried again, “But there might not even be a second wave.”

Dr. Fauci responded, “What Dr. Redfield was saying … that we will have coronavirus in the fall: I am convinced of that.”

This week, President Trump fired the government’s Tom Brady of vaccine development, Rick Bright, director of the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority. Bright’s crime: quietly following medical science standards. You might have heard about the president’s (and Fox News’) push to use the drug hydroxychloroquine for COVID-19 treatment, even though the drug has not been tested for this. Trump has been pushing it as false hope, and also is suspected of pushing it for profit (you know, for his buds in the pharmaceutical business). Mr. Bright has filed a whistleblower complaint alleging he was removed for internally resisting White House efforts to “provide an unproven drug on demand to the American public.”

You might also have heard that Donald and Fox have gone radio-silent on hydroxychloroquine since recent studies show its experimental treatment with COVID-19 patients has resulted in more deaths than the use of placeboes.

President Trump blamed the World Health Organization last week for all the malfeasance for which he himself has been guilty. To back up this public relations charade, he’s cutting funding for the WHO, the only worldwide organization that is slowing the viral spread.

To prop up his lies, Trump is causing more unnecessary deaths around the world and in his own country.

Don’t forget that he also is a literal criminal. ■

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Trump Corruption Chronicles — We Must Never Forget