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March 24, 2020


At the same time, at least "very bad" has the highest percentage of responses. We all know that around 40% of the country is going to support Trump no matter what. To them, the Democrats are evil incarnate, the Republicans are righteous crusaders, and Trump is their glorious leader, to hell with any evidence or logic to the contrary. Then, you have another 10-15% of low info respondents who are probably in denial about both the severity of the pandemic and the lack of competent leadership. These are the folks whistling past the graveyard. Politically uninvolved and uninterested, they can't be bothered with the news lest it knock them off their dandy little cloud and cause feelings of existential discomfort (also, the news is boring). So they hear that the president is giving daily press briefings, and without taking a second to investigate the substance of those briefings, they assume then that the president is "strong," and that's enough for them.

Surprising is it not? Especially since the federal government has not really done much. And Trump personally has only really said it is someone else’s problem. Something tells me those numbers are more based on hope than anything else.

Wait two weeks...

Exactly. Look, I understand if people want to lose their s#@t now, but...the sad fact is that during a national crisis a President's poll number will rise. But it won't stay that way for long.

Besides, Trump's news "conferences" are being aired by the press every day, and the media keeps putting out his nonsense with very few corrections.

And this is one poll. Why don't we take a look at the polls showing Trump vs. Biden?

Might this actually be a bad number? 53/47 is bad when the population generally wants a president to succeed. Bush or Obama woulda been in the 70s.

Kevin Drum has been doing an excellent job posting daily updates of a series of graphs comparing the virus in different countries (here's today's: I only wish he would include South Korea, since they and the U.S. reported their first patient on the same day, but have followed dramatically different strategies that have produced dramatically different results.

We are, unfortunately, on the same track as Italy (the grey dashed line in all the graphs), but roughly two weeks behind. Which means that we are going to see what happened there occur here, but two weeks from now. And they've locked things down pretty tightly, eventually, which is more than you can say for the U.S.

Couple the chart with a few other "known knowns" about the virus. It takes roughly 5 to 14 days to show symptoms after exposure, and it looks like a lot of people are turning out to be asymptomatic. This means that they are out there infecting other people, on the order of two new infections for every current one, which produces an exponential doubling effect every few days. And it takes several days after symptoms appear before it kills its victims. It all means that there are going to be a lot more cases in the next two weeks, and a spike in deaths roughly a week or two after that. And that will happen whether we lock down the whole country or not, because it's already baked in. What we do today won't show up until two to three weeks from now.

Though now, I guess, the GOP has decided that it's better to let the old folks die than to do further harm to the economy. Oddly enough, those are their constituents. Go figure. As if having hundreds of thousands of old people die isn't going to damage the economy.

Sorry ->

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