Friday, March 27, 2020


So it appears that White House staffers have the same problem many parents do now: They have to do their work while constantly being distracted by the incessant complaints of a demanding child.
Believing the worst is yet to come, some top advisers to President Trump are struggling to steer him away from Easter as an arbitrary deadline for much of the nation to reopen.

... The operating assumption among administration officials involved in the coronavirus planning is that the April 12 mark — 16 days away — will not, in fact, turn out to be the starting gun for businesses across America to reopen.

But Trump is far from chastened. "I don’t think he feels in any way that his messaging was off," a top official said. "He feels more convinced than ever that America needs to get back to work."
As with many young children, Trump often can't really be reasoned with. You have to rely on bargaining.
One person close to Trump expressed concern about market reaction the day after Easter, if the president allows that to be set up too rigidly as Open Day.

If the reality is worse than Trump hopes — and large numbers of Americans have to stay isolated — some close to Trump think a false Easter expectation could send markets downward.
Maureen Dowd calls the stock market Trump's binky. Baby Trump wants to go out with his binky on Easter, but apparently they've convinced him that it might be damaged as a result. Whew! That worked! He's not crying anymore.

But he still wants some parts of the country reopened soon, and that discussion won't wait.
Weaning Trump from setting a date for millions of Americans to get back to work is a delicate, ongoing process.

... Despite the blowback for imposing an unrealistic and artificial deadline on a virus that knows no deadline, Trump remains impatient.

On Monday, he faces his first self-imposed deadline — the end of the White House's "15 days to slow the spread."
Some senior administration officials said they wish they could ignore it, because they need more time for societal isolation to catch up to the virus.

But the White House’s decision to relentlessly brand that 15-day period means Trump will have to address it somehow.

Behind the scenes: Advisers have tried to encourage Trump to offer hope without dates or deadlines — to get him away from offering dates and to find new ways to be optimistic without giving the public a false expectation that an end to the crisis is near.
This must be exhausting. I suspect that most of the people working on this crisis within the administration are at least trying to do the right thing -- but how do you your job when a whiny little brat keeps demanding that you pay attention to his demands?

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