To: Vladimir’s Tool
So it was almost refreshing to see that four-star Army General, Gustave Perna, accepted responsibility for the screwed up communication that led to the disconnect between states and Pfizer’s vaccine distribution. Almost. He did say the following (from the WP article led by Isaac Stanley-Becker):
“I want to assure everybody, and I want to take personal responsibility for the miscommunication,” Perna, who is chief operating officer for the Trump administration’s Operation Warp Speed, told reporters. “I know that’s not done much these days, but I am responsible.”
But his press conference introduced more confusion and questions than it settled. He wouldn’t (actually, he couldn’t) answer questions about how the distribution chain is supposed to work and he seemed to shift responsibility to the FDA over quality checks on each vaccine lot when that isn’t their role. So yes, it’s something of a “are you sitting down?” miracle that someone in your administration uttered the words “I am responsible,” but he lost major points when he pulled the usual Trumpian horseshit of claiming ignorance (or to be fair, actually being ignorant) and deflecting blame. He also got impatient when reporters pressed him for details he wouldn’t or couldn’t come up with and got pretty dang snappy with them:
“I am not going to spend any more time talking about the details between fill-finish and releasable.”
It’s not like it’s life or death or anything. Or that those details actually matter or that having access to them might help states and local municipalities regroup around their vaccine distribution strategies. Nah – those reporters were just being wayyyy too pushy and insistent. How dare they? They should know your administration has this, that you’re on top of it. Bigly.
Laura told me earlier today that her brother, who’s a doctor in Atlanta, is slated to get his first dose of vaccine tomorrow. And our friend who is a nurse at the UW should be getting hers before the end of the year. My workplace started vaccinating people on Wednesday. It’s all really, really good stuff – so good that it brings tears of relief just thinking about it. It was also really good to see that nearly everyone we encountered when we were out with the dogs was masked up (everyone was really good about social distancing too). Systems are trying. People are trying. Things are starting to look up, finally.
And still and yet….
We have the damn looming specter of you and your administration threatening to upend the progress. This past week it was “oh, oops, sorry states, you don’t get nearly as much vaccine as you were promised after all” – what’ll it be next week? It could be more of the same Trump-ish crap or it could be that we learn that Russia has infiltrated the vaccine distribution software and they’re either threatening to crash the system if we don’t do X or pay Y or they just go for it and trash it straight out. Or maybe they’ll go after the power grid or air traffic control. What do you think? Has Vladimir given you any indication what all he’s got his eye on?
You do get that no one buys your ludicrous attempt to distract from Russia by blaming China for the hacking, don’t you? As predictable as it is, it still feels pretty damn incredible that you’re denying what your own team is acknowledging – even Pompeo, for Christ’s sake – and it’s scary as hell that you’re giving Vladimir a pass. Again.
You really must hate US.
May we be safe from our POTUS.
May we be willing to stay present and awake.
May we be strong and honorable in the face of the administration’s unconscionable treachery.
May we accept that our POTUS’s allegiances are not with US.