Trumps

medicine

Want to understand Trump’s die-hard fans? Look to alternative medicine.

How is this possible, asks the weary majority of Americans who accept Joe Biden’s win? Despite disavowals of fraud from one conservative election official after another? Despite a complete lack of evidence?

To understand them, it’s helpful to turn to an unlikely parallel: the world of wellness, natural health and alternative medicine. It’s a world of unsolved medical conditions, chronic illness, suffering for which the establishment has no answers. Often that suffering is looked down upon or dismissed, leaving patients alienated and ripe for exploitation. Uncertain and angry, they need a new system to make sense of their situation and give them hope.

Where Trump’s favored enemy is mainstream media, alternative-health gurus rail against mainstream medicine. Both paint their opponents as deeply evil propagandists who quash truth by censoring it. All standard sources of evidence become suspect. Strangely, this widespread evil is a source of clarity and hope. Your suffering has an easy resolution, if only “they” would allow it.

The parallels are unmistakable. Consider these lines from a 2020 Trump speech:

“The radical left demands absolute conformity from every professor, researcher, reporter. … Anyone who dissents from their orthodoxy must be punished, canceled, or banished.”

“Modern-day ‘science’ demands absolute obedience and conformity to industry claims; all dissenters must be silenced and punished.”

In both, basic consensus on facts is evidence of sinister conformity. According to this logic, losing one’s credibility or position for insisting on falsehoods is evidence of heterodox heroism.

With authorities discredited, Trump and the gurus encourage their followers to feel as if they have figured things out for themselves instead of submitting to the decrees of mainstream experts. This allows them to provide the same existential prescription: empowerment and freedom. Those who take mainstream medicine are “sheeple,” and so are those who believe in mainstream media. “The sheeple have got to be led,” explains one Trump supporter. “If you go out and look for alternative media sources, you get the truth.” (All cults exploit the empowering thrill of discovering occult knowledge: “Do your own research” is a mantra in the fringes of alternative health and within the QAnon conspiracy theory — a shared foundation that demystifies the seemingly bizarre overlap between the two communities.)

Like Trump, alternative-medicine gurus are frequently inconsistent. They will decry mainstream institutions and elites as hopelessly corrupt, and then they triumphantly cite a study from Harvard University or an article from this newspaper as their evidence. But supporters do not care about consistency. What matters instead is the rush of empowerment that makes the passive patient a powerful actor. “Take control of your health,” promises Joseph Mercola, the owner of an influential natural-medicine website. (Each article on the site comes with its own “Fact Checked” certification.) “Own Your Body, Free Your Mind” says Kelly Brogan, a popular “holistic psychiatrist.”

The ideological overlap of alternative medicine and Trump’s philosophy explains why the following lyrics, rapped by two Trump supporters at the “Million MAGA March,” include a reference to vaccines alongside standard political conspiracism:

Read More
health

The Health 202: Doctors, hospitals blast Trump’s baseless claims they inflate coronavirus deaths for money

“You know that, right?” Trump said at a Michigan rally on Friday. “I mean our doctors are very smart people. So what they do is they say, ‘I’m sorry, but everybody dies of covid.’” 

Chip Kahn, president of the Federation of American Hospitals, said “it is so offensive.” 

There is no evidence that hospitals and doctors are lying about the number of covid-19 patients. 

That would be fraud and something the Department of Justice could prosecute. “It’s unethical, it’s illegal and it’s inappropriate,” Kahn said.

Without naming the president, the American Medical Association called Trump’s statement a “malicious, outrageous and completely misguided charge” and defended front-line health care workers. “They did it because duty called and because of the sacred oath they took,” said AMA President Susan Bailey.

The pandemic has actually cost medical facilities money, although by how much is unclear. 

Elective surgical procedures, which hospitals were forced to cancel or postpone for much of the spring, generate the most revenue for them. In contrast, carrying for severely ill coronavirus patients for weeks on end consumes lots of staffing hours and bed space for hospitals.

“Frankly, these are very expensive cases on average … the hospitalizations are long and so even the reimbursement is probably way below cost,” Kahn said. 

And hospitals don’t get extra money if a coronavirus patient dies. 

Hospitals bill the government and private insurers for specific services related to specific illnesses, regardless of the outcome.

“Hospitals do not receive extra funds when patients die from covid-19,” the American Hospital Association wrote in a blog post yesterday addressing the claims. “They are not over-reporting covid-19 cases. And, they are not making money on treating covid-19.”

Ashish Jha, dean of Brown University School of Public Health:

However, there is a coronavirus “bonus” for uninsured covid-19 patients.

The coronavirus relief package passed by Congress includes money to pay hospitals for treating uninsured covid-19 patients. The package allows hospitals to be paid 120 percent of typical Medicare rates. 

Yet Kahn feels that, if anything, hospitals aren’t getting paid as much as they need for caring for coronavirus patients. Trump’s comments, he feels, reflected little-to-no understanding of how the coding system works. 

Hospitals can only submit claims for the payments that list covid-19 as a patient’s primary diagnosis. For example, a patient admitted with sepsis due to the coronavirus would be given “sepsis” as a primary diagnosis and “covid-19” as a secondary diagnosis — even though the virus caused the sepsis to begin with. 

Hospitals have asked the Department of Health and Human Services to loosen those rules, charging that the majority of claims for coronavirus testing and treatment would be rejected and ineligible for reimbursement under the program.

Trump’s claim was just the tip of the iceberg in how he talked about the pandemic.

The president switched between blaming others for focusing on the pandemic while simultaneously promising a widespread vaccine within weeks.

He offered extreme depictions of a pandemic response might look like under a Biden administration.

Read More
health

The Health 202: Obamacare marketplaces survived Trump’s term better than expected

“The overall impact of the Trump administration’s policies towards the marketplaces have probably been more muted than most expected — at least so far,” said Adam Gaffney, a professor at Harvard Medical School and president of Physicians for a National Health Program.

Enrollment in Healthcare.gov and the state-based marketplaces is open through Dec. 15.

People can shop for private plans, and qualify for federal subsidies if their income is between 133 percent and 400 percent of the federal poverty level.

To the concern of health-care advocates, enrollment has ticked down over the past four years, contributing to the nation’s worsening uninsured rate amid the coronavirus pandemic and fueling a growing sense among Democrats that further health restructuring is needed.

Yet by some measures, the marketplaces look healthier than ever.

Individual insurance premiums and choices have steadily improved over the past four years, despite Democrats’ insistence that the administration’s policies would destroy the marketplaces. That trend will continue in the 2021 enrollment season.

“One thing the marketplaces proved is how resilient they actually are,” said Andy Slavitt, former administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services under President Barack Obama.

Still, there’s a clear difference in how a Joe Biden administration would approach the ACA.

It certainly would invest more in boosting marketplace enrollment, advisers say. The Democratic nominee, if he wins tomorrow’s election, is expected to restore funds Trump scrapped to advertise the law and may push Congress to pass legislation increasing the income-based subsidies available to people. 

A Democrat-led administration may also reverse some of the changes President Trump made to the marketplaces — although Trump’s record on them is more nuanced than either party claims.

“The truth is somewhere in middle between what Republicans say and what Democrats say,” said Larry Levitt, a vice president for the Kaiser Family Foundation.

The average Obamacare customer can choose from plans offered by four to five issuers.

That’s up from an average of three to four issuers in 2020, according to data from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Four percent of enrollees will have access to plans from just one issuer, up from 12 percent of enrollees this year.

And premiums are declining for the third straight year. The average premiums for the second-lowest-cost “silver”-level plan will be 2 percent lower next year. Average premiums for these “benchmark” plans have declined 8 percent since 2018.

“Despite the uncertainty of the pandemic and concerns about the future of the ACA, the marketplaces are strong and healthy, and premiums for high-quality, comprehensive coverage remain very affordable,” said Joshua Peck, co-founder of Get America Covered — a nonpartisan group that has worked to spread the word about the marketplaces even as the administration has cut advertising for it.

It’s a distinct shift from how things looked during the Obama administration. The first few years of the marketplaces were marked by double-digit premium increases and a steady stream of exits by insurers, as they struggled with how to price and sell insurance

Read More
health

Fauci warns of COVID-19 surge, opposes Trump’s response

‘It’s not a good situation,’ said Fauci

President Donald Trump’s repeated stance that the United States is “rounding the turn” on the coronavirus global pandemic has increased concerns among the government’s top health experts.

Many have warned that the country is heading towards a long and potentially deadly winter with “an unprepared government unwilling to make tough choices,” according to The Washington Post.

Anthony S. Fauci, the country’s leading infectious-disease expert, warned in a wide-ranging interview late Friday of what’s to come for the country in the winter months during the pandemic.

“We’re in for a whole lot of hurt. It’s not a good situation,” Fauci said. “All the stars are aligned in the wrong place as you go into the fall and winter season, with people congregating at home indoors. You could not possibly be positioned more poorly.”

Read More: Fauci advocates mask mandate amid COVID-19 surge across US

Fauci’s stern warnings come in response to the number of maskless Trump rallies across the country, and cities experiencing record surges in coronavirus infections and hospitalizations. 13 battleground states have reported rising coronavirus cases including Michigan, Texas, Florida, and Wisconsin.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, testifies at a hearing of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee on September 23, 2020 in Washington, DC. The committee is examining the federal response to the coronavirus pandemic. (Photo by Alex Edelman-Pool/Getty Images)
Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, testifies at a hearing of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee on September 23, 2020 in Washington, DC. The committee is examining the federal response to the coronavirus pandemic. (Photo by Alex Edelman-Pool/Getty Images)

Fauci said the United States needed to make an “abrupt change” in its public health practices and behaviors in response to the virus. He said the country could surpass 100,000 new coronavirus cases a day and predicted fatalities in the next coming weeks.

His response comes as the country hit a new daily record Friday with more than 98,000 confirmed cases, according to The Washington Post.

During his campaign stop in Waterford Township, Mich., Trump downplayed the virus and mocked those who take it seriously, saying that some doctors record more COVID-19 deaths than others because they receive more money.

Read More: White House vetted celebrities to help president ‘defeat coronavirus despair’

“I mean our doctors are very smart people. So what they do is they say, ‘I’m sorry but everybody dies of COVID,’ ” Trump said.

By contrast, the Biden-Harris campaign has taken strides to follow protocols by wearing masks in public and having socially distanced events. Harris cancelled travel for several days when two people who travelled with her tested positive in October, as reported by NPR. When asked about the difference in approaches, Fauci commented that Biden’s campaign “is taking it

Read More
health

Are Trump’s rallies spreading coronavirus? Why it’s hard to know the full impact

(Reuters) – Stanford University economists estimate that President Donald Trump’s campaign rallies have resulted in 30,000 additional confirmed cases of COVID-19, and likely led to more than 700 deaths overall, according to a paper posted online this weekend.

FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Donald Trump waves to supporters from the presidential limousine while departing a campaign rally in Newtown, Pennsylvania, U.S., on October 31, 2020. REUTERS/Tom Brenner/File Photo

The research, led by B. Douglas Bernheim, chair of economics at Stanford University, analyzed data following 18 Trump rallies held between June 20 and Sept. 22, three of which were indoors. Bernheim said in an email the work relies on statistical methods to infer causation after an event has occurred.

Infectious disease experts have long suspected that the president’s rallies ahead of the Nov. 3 election might be so-called superspreader events. But so far, scientists have not been able to get a good read on their impact, in part because of a lack of robust contact tracing in many states.

WHAT IS THE CONCERN?

In recent months, Trump has held several dozen rallies in states such as Pennsylvania, Minnesota and Wisconsin, where coronavirus infection rates were already on the rise.

At each event, several thousand people were estimated to have participated. While most of the rallies were held outdoors, video footage show that participants gathered in close proximity and many were not wearing masks, creating a risk of spreading the virus as they cheered their candidate on.

“It’s not a major stretch” to say that large unmasked gatherings are likely to spread the virus, said Dr. Amesh Adalja, an infectious disease expert at Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security.

Adalja said the Stanford paper was “suggestive” of spread from the events, but not definitive because it was not based on an investigation of actual cases. That would help confirm whether participants were exposed to the virus at the event, rather than other places where transmission is rampant.

WHAT DO WE KNOW?

Minnesota public health officials have attributed four COVID-19 outbreaks and more than 25 cases to Trump rallies held in the state in September and October.

An additional 11 state health departments contacted by Reuters said they had not been able to trace infections to the rallies, although some, including Michigan and Wisconsin, have determined that individual people who later tested positive for COVID-19 were present at Trump campaign events.

WHAT DATA ARE NEEDED?

Disease experts say that rigorous contact tracing from one such large event could help arrive at an accurate prediction of how infectious such rallies can be.

But the United States has fallen behind other developed countries in this regard, due to a lack of funding and coordination for contact tracing by the Trump administration.

“The problem is we’ve not done anything to get real numbers,” said Dr. Eric Topol, a genomics expert and director of the Scripps Research Translational Institute in La Jolla, California. Instead, it is subject to conjecture and mathematical models.

For

Read More
health

Gottlieb pushes back on Trump’s comments of ’rounding the corner’ on virus: ‘Things are getting worse’

Former Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Commissioner Scott Gottlieb is pushing back on President Trump’s repeated comments that the U.S. is “rounding the corner” on coronavirus.



a man wearing a suit and tie looking at the camera: Gottlieb pushes back on Trump's comments of 'rounding the corner' on virus: 'Things are getting worse'


© Greg Nash
Gottlieb pushes back on Trump’s comments of ’rounding the corner’ on virus: ‘Things are getting worse’

Gottlieb told CBS’s “Face The Nation” o Sunday that “things are getting worse.”

“Things are getting worse around the country,” he said. “I think Thanksgiving is really going to be an inflection point. I think December is probably going to be our toughest month.”

Gottlieb said states are “seeing accelerating spread” and the U.S. is “at the beginning of what looks like exponential growth in a lot of states,” including those in the Midwest, the Great Lakes region, Texas, Illinois, Florida and Wisconsin.

“These are very worrisome trends,” he said. “There are about 23 states right now that are accelerating the spread.”

The former FDA official said 15 states have a positivity rate above 10 percent and all of the states are experiencing “an expanding epidemic right now.”

The New York Times documented a record high for new U.S. cases confirmed in a single-day on Friday, at nearly 100,000.

The newspaper categorizes 41 states and territories as places where new cases are “higher” and “staying high.” Eight states and territories were considered places where new cases are “lower but going up.” Almost 30 states and territories are experiencing increasing death tolls.

Overall, the U.S. ranks as the country with the most cases and deaths, with more than 9.1 million cases and 230,732 deaths, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

Continue Reading

Source Article

Read More
health

Explainer: Are Trump’s Rallies Spreading Coronavirus? Why It’s Hard to Know the Full Impact | Top News

By Julie Steenhuysen and Carl O’Donnell

(Reuters) – Stanford University economists estimate that President Donald Trump’s campaign rallies have resulted in 30,000 additional confirmed cases of COVID-19, and likely led to more than 700 deaths overall, according to a paper posted online this weekend.

The research, led by B. Douglas Bernheim, chair of economics at Stanford University, analyzed data following 18 Trump rallies held between June 20 and Sept. 22, three of which were indoors. Bernheim said in an email the work relies on statistical methods to infer causation after an event has occurred.

Infectious disease experts have long suspected that the president’s rallies ahead of the Nov. 3 election might be so-called superspreader events. But so far, scientists have not been able to get a good read on their impact, in part because of a lack of robust contact tracing in many states.

In recent months, Trump has held several dozen rallies in states such as Pennsylvania, Minnesota and Wisconsin, where coronavirus infection rates were already on the rise.

At each event, several thousand people were estimated to have participated. While most of the rallies were held outdoors, video footage show that participants gathered in close proximity and many were not wearing masks, creating a risk of spreading the virus as they cheered their candidate on.

“It’s not a major stretch” to say that large unmasked gatherings are likely to spread the virus, said Dr. Amesh Adalja, an infectious disease expert at Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security.

Adalja said the Stanford paper was “suggestive” of spread from the events, but not definitive because it was not based on an investigation of actual cases. That would help confirm whether participants were exposed to the virus at the event, rather than other places where transmission is rampant.

Minnesota public health officials have attributed four COVID-19 outbreaks and more than 25 cases to Trump rallies held in the state in September and October.

An additional 11 state health departments contacted by Reuters said they had not been able to trace infections to the rallies, although some, including Michigan and Wisconsin, have determined that individual people who later tested positive for COVID-19 were present at Trump campaign events.

Disease experts say that rigorous contact tracing from one such large event could help arrive at an accurate prediction of how infectious such rallies can be.

But the United States has fallen behind other developed countries in this regard, due to a lack of funding and coordination for contact tracing by the Trump administration.

“The problem is we’ve not done anything to get real numbers,” said Dr. Eric Topol, a genomics expert and director of the Scripps Research Translational Institute in La Jolla, California. Instead, it is subject to conjecture and mathematical models.  

For example, scientists can use gene sequencing to trace minute changes in the genetic code of the virus as it passes from one person to another, allowing them to develop a map of where the virus travels. Such work has been

Read More
health

White House unleashes on Fauci after criticism of Atlas and Trump’s pandemic response

The White House on Saturday unleashed on Dr. Anthony Fauci, the country’s leading infectious disease expert, following his comments to the Washington Post that criticized the Trump administration’s response to the pandemic, including Dr. Scott Atlas, who the President has relied on for advice on handling the coronavirus.



Anthony S. Fauci wearing a suit and tie: WASHINGTON, DC - APRIL 07: Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, listens to U.S. President Donald Trump speak to reporters following a meeting of the coronavirus task force in the Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House on April 7, 2020 in Washington, DC. The president today removed the independent chairman of a committee tasked with overseeing the roll out of the $2 trillion coronavirus bailout package. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)


© Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
WASHINGTON, DC – APRIL 07: Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, listens to U.S. President Donald Trump speak to reporters following a meeting of the coronavirus task force in the Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House on April 7, 2020 in Washington, DC. The president today removed the independent chairman of a committee tasked with overseeing the roll out of the $2 trillion coronavirus bailout package. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

“It’s unacceptable and breaking with all norms for Dr. Fauci, a senior member of the President’s Coronavirus Taskforce and someone who has praised President (Donald) Trump’s actions throughout this pandemic, to choose three days before an election to play politics,” White House deputy press secretary Judd Deere said in a statement to CNN on Saturday evening.

Deere took issue with Fauci’s comments where the doctor seemingly praises Democratic nominee Joe Biden’s campaign. Fauci told the Post that the Democratic nominee’s campaign “is taking it seriously from a public health perspective.” While Trump, Fauci said, is “looking at it from a different perspective.” He said that perspective was “the economy and reopening the country,” according to the Post.

“As a member of the Task Force, Dr. Fauci has a duty to express concerns or push for a change in strategy, but he’s not done that, instead choosing to criticize the President in the media and make his political leanings known by praising the President’s opponent— exactly what the American people have come to expect from The Swamp,” Deere said.

Fauci, a leading member of the government’s coronavirus response, said the United States needed to make an “abrupt change” in public health practices and behaviors, according to the Post. He said the country could surpass 100,000 new coronavirus cases a day and predicted rising deaths in the coming weeks.

“Dr. Fauci knows that the risks today are dramatically lower than they were only a few months ago with mortality rates falling over 80%. The Trump Administration, through the work of the Task Force, continues to surge testing, PPE, personnel, and capacity to protect the vulnerable, help schools reopen, and respond to conditions on the ground,” Deere said.

In Friday’s interview with the Post, Fauci also criticized Atlas, a neuroradiologist and Trump’s hand-picked coronavirus adviser, for his lack of expertise.

“I have real problems with that guy,” Fauci said. “He’s a smart guy who’s talking about things that I believe he doesn’t have any real insight or knowledge or experience in. He keeps talking about things that when you dissect it out and parse it out, it doesn’t make any sense.”

Atlas responded to Fauci on Twitter, tweeting on Saturday night:

Read More
health

Fauci warns of covid-19 surge, offers blunt assessment of Trump’s response

President Trump’s repeated assertions the United States is “rounding the turn” on the novel coronavirus have increasingly alarmed the government’s top health experts, who say the country is heading into a long and potentially deadly winter with an unprepared government unwilling to make tough choices.

39 times Trump said the coronavirus would go away

UP NEXT

UP NEXT

“We’re in for a whole lot of hurt. It’s not a good situation,” Anthony S. Fauci, the country’s leading infectious-disease expert, said in a wide-ranging interview late Friday. “All the stars are aligned in the wrong place as you go into the fall and winter season, with people congregating at home indoors. You could not possibly be positioned more poorly.”

Fauci, a leading member of the government’s coronavirus response, said the United States needed to make an “abrupt change” in public health practices and behaviors. He said the country could surpass 100,000 new coronavirus cases a day and predicted rising deaths in the coming weeks. He spoke as the nation set a new daily record Friday with more than 98,000 cases. As hospitalizations increase, deaths are also ticking up, with more than 1,000 reported Wednesday and Thursday, bringing the total to more than 229,000 since the start of the pandemic, according to health data analyzed by The Washington Post.

Fauci’s blunt warnings come as Trump has rallied in states and cities experiencing record surges in infections and hospitalizations in a last-ditch effort to convince voters he has successfully managed the pandemic. He has held maskless rallies with thousands of supporters, often in violation of local health mandates.

Even as new infections climb in 42 states, Trump has downplayed the virus or mocked those who take it seriously. “Covid-19, covid, covid, covid,” he said during one event, lamenting that the news media gives it too much attention. In another rally, he baselessly said that U.S. doctors record more deaths from covid-19, the disease the coronavirus causes, than other nations because they get more money.

“I mean our doctors are very smart people. So what they do is they say, ‘I’m sorry but everybody dies of covid,’ ” Trump said Friday at a rally in Waterford Township, Mich., without offering any evidence.

Fauci said former vice president Joe Biden’s campaign “is taking it seriously from a public health perspective.” Trump, Fauci said, is “looking at it from a different perspective.” He said that perspective was “the economy and reopening the country.”

[Tracking coronavirus cases across the U.S.]

Fauci, who once took a starring role in the response and briefed the president almost every day as director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, described a disjointed response as cases surge. Several current and former senior administration officials said the White House is almost entirely focused on a vaccine, even though experts warn it is unlikely to be a silver bullet that ends the pandemic immediately since it will take months under the best of circumstances to inoculate tens of millions

Read More
health

The Trumps don’t seem to understand that their supporters are dying from the coronavirus

For two consecutive nights, as President Trump was barnstorming swing states, his two eldest sons appeared on Laura Ingraham’s Fox News program, where they dismissed the threat posed by the coronavirus.



a man wearing a suit and tie: President Donald Trump gives a thumbs up during a campaign rally at Phoenix Goodyear Airport in Goodyear, Arizona, U.S., October 28, 2020. (REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst)


© Jonathan Ernst/Reuters
President Donald Trump gives a thumbs up during a campaign rally at Phoenix Goodyear Airport in Goodyear, Arizona, U.S., October 28, 2020. (REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst)

On Wednesday, Eric Trump made his appearance. His interview was centered on the unfounded claim that social media companies were “censoring” conservatives.

“The one thing you don’t want to do to Americans is take away their free speech. It’s our First Amendment right for a reason,” he said, conflating Twitter’s efforts to stem disinformation with government censorship of speech.

“I’m telling you,” he added, “people aren’t happy about it. I think it’s probably become the number one issue in politics in the last couple of weeks.”

A claim that social media companies adding warnings to false claims by the president (which is really the recent spur for this frustration) is the number one issue in politics is unquestionably ridiculous. That the son of the president, someone who has been on the campaign trail stumping for his father, would say this with sincerity during a period when deaths from the coronavirus are on the rise is simply callous.

On Thursday, though, his brother Donald Trump Jr. tried to tell Ingraham that deaths weren’t on the rise.

“The reality is this,” he said. “I put it up on my Instagram a couple days ago, because I went through the CDC data, because I kept hearing about new cases, but I was like why aren’t they talking about deaths? Oh, oh: because the number is almost nothing.”

As The Washington Post’s Aaron Blake reported, Trump Jr.’s claim that deaths were down to “almost nothing” was a function of his making a mistake that has been made repeatedly over the course of the pandemic. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention tracks coronavirus deaths by confirming death certificates. Those certificates can come days or weeks after the deaths — deaths that are reported by counties and states in near real time. So the CDC numbers necessarily and demonstrably show fewer recent deaths but, over time, equivalent long-term totals.

It’s like arguing that there are very few coronavirus infections after scaling back testing for the virus. Which, of course, is what President Trump would like to do.

As his sons were misinforming Fox News viewers, Trump was misinforming attendees at his rallies.

“A safe vaccine is coming very quickly — you’re going to have it momentarily — that eradicates the virus,” he told a crowd in Arizona on Wednesday. “And we’re rounding the turn regardless.”

This assertion from Trump that the country is “rounding the turn” on the virus even without a vaccine is as untrue as his son’s claim that deaths are falling. Both cases and deaths are up, the former leading the latter by about two weeks. On Thursday, the country saw nearly

Read More