The blame game for the current pandemic has been going on almost since the day we first learned of it. That goes for not only how the virus erupted onto the world stage (a data point that’s still to be definitively established) but also how the United States responded to the threat and if it could have been done more effectively. Most everyone who’s been trying to prognosticate on this subject has wound up with some egg on their faces at times, including yours truly. But that hasn’t stopped anyone from hurling stones, even if they live in glass houses.
Enter the New York Times. This week they’ve dug up a study from September of last year in which White House economists were sounding the alarm about potential damage to the economy if a massive pandemic broke out. And of course they make the time to let everyone know that Donald Trump could have heeded that dire warning and been better prepared to defend the nation when the coronavirus went viral.
White House economists published a study last September that warned a pandemic disease could kill a half million Americans and devastate the economy.
It went unheeded inside the administration.
In late February and early March, as the coronavirus pandemic began to spread from China to the rest of the world, President Trump’s top economic advisers played down the threat the virus posed to the U.S. economy and public health.