There was never a conflict between containing Covid-19 and getting the US economy back on track. The first was always a prerequisite to the second. By doing nothing to contain the virus, Trump has not only caused tens of thousands of unnecessary deaths but put the US economy into a stall.

The uptick in jobs in June was due almost entirely to the hasty reopening, which is now being reversed.

Arizona’s Republican governor, Doug Ducey, initially refused to order masks and even barred local officials from doing so. This week he closed all gyms, bars and movie theaters in the state. The governors of Florida, Texas and California have also reimposed restrictions. Officials in Florida’s Miami-Dade county recently approved the reopening of movie theaters, arcades, casinos, concert halls, bowling halls and adult entertainment venues. They have now re-closed them.

And so on across America. A vast re-closing is under way, as haphazard as was the reopening. In the biggest public health emergency in US history, in which nearly 130,000 have already lost their lives, still no one is in charge.