Common sense dictates that if you foolishly step into a colony of fire ants and are beset by a thousand stinging bites, you can’t just brush a few of them away – you have to continue your harried ministrations until all fire ants are wiped off and you’re free of them.
This roughly approximates the plight of New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo with regard to his ongoing, increasingly desperate attempts to sidestep responsibility for his deeply compromised Coronavirus leadership – particularly the catastrophic March 25 directive in which he ordered nursing homes in New York to accept COVID-positive patients.
Even though the president has followed through on virtually every request from the governor – including providing over 4,000 ventilators that went largely unused and a hospital ship – Cuomo recently doubled down and attacked Trump yet again. He attempted to erase his accountability for New York’s dark distinction as the national epicenter of COVID-19 and for the tragic and unnecessary nursing home deaths with a next-level shirk of astonishing audacity, stating:
“Donald Trump caused the COVID outbreak in New York. That is a fact.”
Cuomo’s Major Mistake
The gubernatorial nursing home mandate resulted in the deaths of at least 6,000 elderly New Yorkers and forced Cuomo to reverse his resolution in May – a tacit admission of his grave mistake. Some estimates put the numbers at closer to 11,000 dead from his abject decision, but knowing with certainty has become difficult as Cuomo’s fixers in Albany and the media have endeavored to strenuously ignore the elephant in the room with the medical mask – or to apply lipstick to him. One has to wonder whether a class-action lawsuit brought by the families of the dearly departed will be established and go forward – and with what alacrity.
Try as he might, Cuomo cannot brush away the fire ants of this scandal as they continue to bite at him politically these many months later. Ever since he was called to the carpet for it, he has taken up a part-time job making excuses for his fateful decision, including that he was following government directives – although his actions directly contravened federal CMS (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services) guidelines.
Cuomo had, it seems, the presence of mind to sign legislation that indemnifies all New York State health care workers from lawsuits that arise from the Coronavirus – but not the clarity to prevent COVID-positive patients from being admitted to nursing homes.
Cuomo’s rationale in blaming the president for his state’s plight is that the New York COVID-19 outbreak and response – which was the worst in the country and, by many accounts, the worst in the world – could’ve been prevented if President Trump had established travel bans sooner. Recall that Trump restricted travel from China on January 31, nearly a month and a half before COVID-19 was declared a pandemic by the WHO. Hours after this announcement by the World Health Organization on March 11, the president banned all travel from Europe.
The first case of COVID-19 was confirmed in New York State a little over a week before Trump’s Europe ban.
Cuomo is desperate enough to save his career that he is revisiting the greatest hits of early 2020, swinging wildly like a kid ganged up on in a street fight. Again, he took Trump to task for the president’s “racism” in calling it the “Chinese Virus” – apparently unaware of the history of Spanish Flu, Hong Kong Flu, German Measles, Ebola, Zika, Lyme Disease, and Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever.
But of course, the governor knows about these diseases and the alleged racism of naming them after the places of their origin – or how could he have said the following back in January during the Chinese New Year when New Yorkers were being urged to go to Chinatown for the festivities?
“We went through this before: Zika virus, Ebola, et cetera. But let’s have some connection to the reality of the situation. Catching the flu right now is a much greater risk than anything that has anything to do with Coronavirus.”
None of us had a crystal ball, but Cuomo’s latest deflection, which alleges Trump’s culpability for 32,000 NY deaths, is either the addled muttering of a man in the middle of a political fever dream from which he can’t awaken or a masterful gaslight along the lines of a certain art school reject’s observation that, “If you tell a big enough lie and tell it frequently enough, it will be believed.”
With a career at risk of being torched like a California wildfire for his onerous leadership, Cuomo has opted to firehose the threat with lies and distortions – and a strong assist from the media. What else would you expect from the “New York Tough” guy?
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