Posted in: Op-edPolitics
Published:
March 27, 2020 5:01 PM

Donald Trump Mashes the Panic Button With Unhinged Ventilator Tweet

An unhinged Donald Trump is mashing the panic button to try to make U.S. companies shoulder the blame for the coronavirus outbreak.
  • Donald Trump is starting to panic as the coronavirus threat becomes too large to ignore.
  • He shifted blame to U.S. companies in a desperate tweet.
  • His failure to mitigate this health crisis is bubbling to the surface.

In an abrupt about-face, Donald Trump rage-tweeted at General Motors with a desperate plea for ventilators on Friday.

Source: Twitter

Hours earlier, the president was sticking to his assertion that hospitals’ pleas for more ventilators were dramatic and overdone.

But Mr. Trump was clearly rattled when he called out both GM and Ford for not making ventilators to aid in the country’s battle against coronavirus.

Trump Initially Dismissed Need for Ventilators

As the number of known coronavirus cases in the U.S. surpassed that of any other nation, Donald Trump appeared unfazed.

He balked at health advisors’ warnings and even teased a plan that would evaluate the coronavirus risk level on a county-by-county basis.

When asked about the mounting crisis in New York, where the healthcare system is overwhelmed, Trump argued that the hospitals were overstating their needs.

I have a feeling that a lot of the numbers that are being said in some areas are just bigger than they’re going to be. I don’t believe you need 40,000 or 30,000 ventilators. You go into major hospitals sometimes, and they’ll have two ventilators. And now all of a sudden they’re saying, “Can we order 30,000 ventilators?”

He initially pushed the blame onto local lawmakers, saying the U.S. federal government isn’t responsible for states’ failure to cope with rising coronavirus cases.

We’re really a second line of attack. The first line of attack is supposed to be the hospitals and the local government and the states themselves.

Now he’s shifting the blame onto corporate America, calling GM stupid for not making ventilators sooner.

Trump Finally Sees The Disaster on the Horizon – and Ducks

Donald Trump’s first line of defense against coronavirus was to blame the media. He’s moved on to U.S. companies. | Source: REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

But GM, Ford, and other U.S. businesses could be forgiven for not understanding the severity of the coronavirus crisis. After all, the president at the nation’s helm long dismissed the whole thing as a media ploy to damage him.

Trump compared the virus to the flu, and Republicans even suggested the elderly suck it up and die for the U.S. economy.

And yet the president is demanding U.S. automakers produce more ventilators (in all caps, no less). His tweet reeks of desperation, something the rest of the world might pity if it weren’t so clear how shortsighted he’s been all along.

He’s been focused on one thing throughout the coronavirus epidemic— reelection.

Trump Shifts His Strategy From Denial to Blame

First, he blamed the media for tanking the stock market and striking fear into the economy. Next came China, followed by state governors and the hospitals they desperately tried to support.

It was only a matter of time before Trump turned on U.S. corporations.

Unfortunately, his panic is misdirected. Demanding that Ford and GM help out may get a few thousand much-needed ventilators to New York and New Jersey. It may even save a few lives.

But as long as the U.S. carries on with unrestricted movement and a hodgepodge of social distancing measures that differ from state to state, the U.S. will continue to suffer the brunt of the coronavirus. And Trump will have no one left to blame but himself. 

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of CCN.com.

This article was edited by Josiah Wilmoth.

Laura Hoy @Laura_h_says

Laura has been working as financial journalist covering US markets for more than a decade. Her work can be found in a wide variety of publications including Yahoo Finance, InvestorPlace, Nasdaq and Benzinga. She can be reached at LMarieHoy @ gmail.com

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