An Unbelievably Disastrous State of Affairs

Like most of the rest of the U.S. population, Montanans are wondering how we’re going to get out of the very serious and growing problems afflicting our state and nation right now. They are also, on an increasing basis, growing very angry that our Republican president and his snarling pack of enablers are ignoring the old adage that “when you find yourself in a hole, quit digging.” There’s no great mystery how we got in this unbelievably disastrous state of affairs, but getting out is the greatest challenge facing our nation in a century.

Right now, one American a minute — 60 an hour, 1,500 a day — will die from a disease other countries have managed to contain. Yet, in the wealthiest nation on the planet, coronavirus rages wildly out of control. How did it happen? Look no further than the White House, where a malignant narcissist will sacrifice anything and everything to gain a second term in the office he is historically unfit to occupy.

Of course there are many who would say the disasters now encompassing the nation were totally predictable— especially when an incompetent individual surrounds himself with “senior advisers” from his own family who are anything but senior in the experience that’s vitally necessary to successfully govern a nation of 330 million Americans.

Add to that the hundreds of corporate lobbyists who were politically appointed to “manage” federal agencies that are supposed to ensure public resources are used for the public good. But instead, despite the obvious and enormous conflicts of interest, these corrupt individuals remain committed to ensuring the profits of their former employers — and the public good be damned, the devil take the hindmost.

How bad is it? Well, the Gross Domestic Product, which is the measure of all goods and services produced in the United States, has fallen a whopping 32.9% in the last few months. The temporary federal moratorium on evictions expired last week while 30% of U.S. households didn’t pay their July rent on time and 12 million Americans face immediate homelessness. The unemployment supplemental payments that helped carry some 25 million citizens through for the last few months is likewise gone. But the Republican-dominated Senate decided to leave Washington rather than address the terrible crises afflicting the citizens they were elected to serve and protect.

In the meantime, rather than face these daunting challenges, our ludicrous president decides to spew the threat of postponing the November election because, in his own words, “nobody likes me.” Well, at least he told the truth that one time. But of course, as we have all come to realize, it’s another empty Trump threat since he has absolutely no authority whatsoever to postpone a national election.

Here in Montana, where we’re known for taking care of ourselves and our fellow Montanans, we have gone from one of the least infected states to being listed as a “high risk” state by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention “where the seven-day moving average of daily new COVID-19 cases is 10 or more per 100,000 persons.” How did that happen? Look no further than the flood of inconsiderate tourists from high-infection states flooding Montana while flaunting our precautionary pandemic protocols.

Is there any good news? Well, sort of. Every day that passes brings us one day closer to evicting those who truly deserve to go — the corrupt White House dwellers and their Republican enablers nationwide. Only after that deep cleansing can we begin to rebuild our nation and focus, as we should, on taking care of our citizens.

George Ochenski is a columnist for the Daily Montanan, where this essay originally appeared.