Today, I turn Around the Block over to Bob Cesca of Salon.com and his essay, “Donald Trump’s murder math: Any death toll under 2 million is a ‘very good job.'”
As Cesca writes, and with all due respect to the very clever and very funny Andy Borowitz and his “Not the News” posts in The New Yorker, “During a presidency that’s beyond satire, no one really anticipated that Trump’s Red Hat militia would end up being a death cult, but here we are.”
I’ll let you read Cesca on your own, but wanted to highlight two short excerpts from his piece.
The first talks to Trump’s pronouncement this week that he would be doing a “very good job” if “only” 100,000-200,000 Americans die from a pandemic, a pandemic that just a few short weeks ago he characterized as a “hoax.”
“Yet our badly demented and criminally incompetent chief executive believes we should chalk up 100,000 to 200,000 deaths as being ‘a very good job.’ So in other words, if around 150,000 Americans die painful and lonely deaths, due in part to Trump’s colossally irresponsible minimizing of the pandemic for weeks on end, then Trump will presumably get to declare victory and insist that the ‘fake news’ should congratulate him for it. Either Trump doesn’t understand the definition of the phrase ‘a very good job,’ or he genuinely believes he deserves a standing ovation if 150,000 of his fellow Americans succumb to a ‘hoax.'”
The second concerns the unfortunate reality that Trump will continue in office at least until January 20 while this crisis roils and we deal with its aftermath. Recently, I wrote about the Senate’s self-serving refusal to remove Trump when they had the chance; the unwillingness of Mike Pence and the Cabinet to invoke the 25th Amendment and do what the Senate wouldn’t; and the cowardly stance and vote of my senator, Marco Rubio and his GOP colleagues, to “do the right thing” regarding Trump and removal.
Here’s Cesca’s take.
“Donald Trump needs to step down now, before we ever reach the catastrophic milestone he cited. My words may carry little weight, but this needs to be said by all of us who still have our wits about us. Deciding to resign is the only way Trump will ever be applauded by anyone outside his brainwashed death cult. A good leader understands his limitations, and Trump had no business in this post from the beginning — in fact, he’s getting worse at it. For the sake of the Americans he’s supposed to be leading, resignation is the best possible thing he can do, and he needs to do it now before his “leadership” makes things even worse.”
Obviously, a Trump resignation is not going to happen. But, like Bob Cesca, one can dream!
Here’s the link to Cesca’s Salon.com essay: https://www.salon.com/2020/03/31/donald-trumps-murder-math-any-death-toll-under-2-million-is-a-very-good-job/
And here’s the PDF version:
One last thing about Andy Borowitz’s Not the News and Around the Block’s “News with a Twist.”
For the second time since I re-started this blog several years ago, I’ve reached the “it’s not funny anymore” stage. The last time was in 2017, about six months into Trump’s term. At that time not only did I stop writing satire, I took a break from writing completely. And a break as well from watching the TV satirists…Samantha Bee, John Oliver, Trevor Noah, etc….as it struck me that they were forcing humor during an intolerable time, namely, the unfolding horror of the Trump presidency. They just weren’t funny. Nor was I. Even though the horror now is worse, more serious and deadly, I’m not going to stop writing this time. And, where appropriate, I’ll even continue to write some satirical posts sub-headed “News with a Twist.” But going forward, I think the majority of what I write will focus on more serious commentary and observations, not humor. To paraphrase, and expand on, Bob Cesca,
“This is a presidency, this is a president, this is a global human tragedy that is beyond satire.”
Thanks for reading. Stay well. Stay safe.