August 4, 2020

THE DISMAL FUTURE

FROM KING FEATURES SYNDICATE
BY BOB FRANKEN

THE DISMAL FUTURE

“‘Cheer up,’” they said, ‘things could be worse.’ So I did, and sure enough they were.” That’s supposed to be a joke, but when it comes to this country’s governing chaos, it is sadly not funny.
First, you had a president who dismissed the seriousness of the invisible invader. Then, only when it became obvious that the lethal coronavirus could not be ignored, or wished away, the people in his administration made a half-hearted response to the deadly organism, even though it was killing Americans at an alarming rate. They left it to state governors to come up with policies to protect the population against the virus, while failing to provide the tools to do it. This meant a lack of personal protective gear for the medical heroes, who stepped up through the toxic atmosphere to bravely try to save lives even though they were often pathetically under-equipped thanks to a supply line that ground to a halt.
Finally, because they had no choice, some of the governors made the agonizing decision to shut down commerce. Millions of people were thrown out of work. They were helped somewhat by trillions of dollars in federal relief funds and eviction moratoriums that provided relief, though the funds were delayed by bureaucratic incompetence and corruption. Still, it was the lifeline between starving and survival.
Even so, the economic plunge had an effect. COVID spikes where thousands died were slowly flattened out. But an impatient president along with his cadre of right wing extremists started pressuring for a return to economic normalcy even though public health experts warned that it was dangerously premature. Given the slightest chance, too many Americans lapsed into irresponsibility, gathering in crowds, not even bothering with masks. The dire predictions were tragically borne out, and now many areas of the country are consumed by the deadly virus waiting to strike.

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August 1, 2020

FAUCI’S PITCH vs. TRUMP’S PITCH

FROM KING FEATURES SYNDICATE
BY BOB FRANKEN

FAUCI’S PITCH VS. TRUMP’S PITCH

President Donald Trump was in one of his whiny moods on Tuesday. He was talking about Dr. Anthony Fauci, who’s been the head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases for 36 years. “He’s got this high approval rating,” grumbled the president. After all, he’s followed some of Fauci’s recommendations. “So why don’t I have a high approval rating?”
Indeed. Tony Fauci threw out the first pitch at Washington Nationals’ opening day and it was wild, to put it mildly. Nevertheless, Topps, the guys that make baseball cards, made one of Fauci in action. They sold out in 24 hours — all 51,512 of them. Trump, on the other hand, gets a big inflated “Baby Donald” balloon.

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July 28, 2020

WILD PITCHES

FROM KING FEATURE SYNDICATE
BY BOB FRANKEN

WILD PITCHES

Tony Fauci memo to himself: “Never EVER throw out the first pitch at a game again!” I don’t want to rub it in to Dr. Fauci, we’ve known each other for a long time, but his toss on opening night was not the stuff of baseball legend, unless a record is kept of the worst ones ever. It was even more wretched than the ones heaved by then-President Barack Obama back in 2009 and 2010. And now the current president says he wants to get in the act.
President Donald Trump, never to be outdone, announced that he’d throw out a first pitch in mid-August. Then he declared that he would not, perhaps because it would be at an empty Yankee stadium where he’d not get to claim it was the biggest crowd ever. Of course he gussied it up a little, tweeting:
“Because of my strong focus on the China Virus, including scheduled meetings on Vaccines, our economy and much else, I won’t be able to be in New York to throw out the opening pitch.”
Maybe he was worried he’d also be embarrassed. Perhaps later, he said. Don’t hold your breath.
The point is that Fauci is not an MLB pitcher, but he is a major league infectious disease doctor, who has tried to apply his experience and wisdom to the battle against the coronavirus. His expertise and amazing ability to speak in a language everyone can understand has made him one of the most trusted people in America when it comes to combatting this pandemic.
Unfortunately, one of the least trusted men is President Trump. There is no way of knowing how many have died because of his and his administration’s blunders. With his initial trivialization of the threat, to the rejection of sound public health advice, to his promotion of various medications without any reason, to his agitation for a premature reopening of the country for political reasons, he has shown that he is exactly the wrong person to be in charge.
And he persists with his ignorance and bluster, trying to peddle the idea that he’s not in way over his head. He still wants to show that he has more knowledge than Dr. Fauci and the other public health experts, who shudder every time he opens his mouth, trying a different sort of pitch. At least now he’s recognizing the fact that the country he pretends to lead is being consumed by the raging coronavirus, because he prematurely declared an “all clear.”


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July 25, 2020

ALL POLITICS ALL THE TIME

FROM KING FEATURES SYNDICATE
BY BOB FRANKEN

ALL POLITICS ALL THE TIME

In ancient history — that is, before TV — there was a gentleman’s agreement that the presidential electioneering didn’t really get underway until Labor Day. But how times have changed! First of all, there are no gentlepersons left in politics, certainly no bipartisanship. The television news era, now known as the “good old days,” is made obsolete by antisocial media, where everyone has a worldwide megaphone and facts be damned. Meanwhile, there is no end to campaigning; no beginning either. It goes on nonstop, a blurry round of constant demagoguery. No longer does it matter the seriousness of the issue. It’s all about how it can be parlayed into political advantage.
Take President Donald Trump’s dispatching of paramilitary federal forces to deal with racial unrest in American cities. Its constitutionality is dubious, but if Trump’s followers heard the arguments pro and con, their eyes would glaze over. All they need to know is that protestors don’t really know their place. POTUS makes his political intent clear with his justification:
“We’re looking at Chicago, too. We’re looking at New York,” he said. “All run by very liberal Democrats. All run, really, by the radical left.”
And, as he sent in the federal cavalry, he didn’t even pretend it was not part of his re-election strategy: “And you know what? If Biden got in, that would be true for the country. The whole country would go to hell.”

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1-800-GRIFTER

WHAT’S IN A NAME?

FRIDAY NIGHT FOLLIES

TRUMP AND THE OTHER TODDLERS

SPORTS AND REAL LIFE

AMERICA IN DENIAL

PREMATURE POLL POSITION

DEFUND FUN

CAMOUFLAGING OUTRAGE

RACIST BRANDING

TRICKY DON

DONALD TRUMP: AMERICAN SYMBOL

THE STAGES OF BIGOTRY

TRUMP TATTERS

THE CASE AGAINST VIOLENCE

FACE MASK FACE OFF

U.S. CRAPSHOOT

TAKING HIS OWN SNAKE OIL?

THE SURRENDER

TRUMP OFFENSIVE

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