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The speech Trump must, but cannot, give...

Ted Rall on

Some of my commentary about politics is presented in the form of "advice" to the ruling classes. Please understand: I don't really expect those in the ruling class to take my advice. My advice is not really directed toward them. It is a theoretical exercise.

I am really speaking to you, the people. My goal is to set a standard of behavior and policy to which we are entitled and ought to expect the ruling class to conform. I set a minimal bar. I know that the ruling class will not meet the minimum standard. I want our rulers' failures to be placed in the sharpest possible relief so we can judge them accordingly and take the next logical step, getting rid of them.

If I were a speechwriter, I would advise President Donald Trump to deliver something like the following from the Oval Office on national television. He will not. He cannot. The system won't allow it.

But he has to. And he won't. Which is why the regime is on the way out.

"My fellow Americans: I know you are scared. I'm scared, too. Anyone who is paying attention is frightened.

"We will lose some of our sons, our daughters, our spouses, our parents and our friends. Even after the coronavirus has been eradicated, it will take years to recover from the economic shock. Pain, suffering and death are inevitable. We will lose many of our best people.

 

"But I want you to know that we will get through this. America survived the Civil War, which killed 2% of the population at the time, the Spanish flu epidemic and the Great Depression. The COVID-19 pandemic will be remembered as a challenge on par with those horrors but not greater.

"Today I want to assure you that no American will come out of this economically ruined. It will be tough. But no one will lose their home to eviction or foreclosure. No one will go hungry. The United States government has ample resources to meet the basic needs of every American. This assurance goes beyond the end date of the present crisis. No one will be asked in six or 12 or 18 months, when we come out on the other side of this, to pay back rent or pay mortgage or pay giant medical bills.

"This assurance extends to noncitizens. The COVID-19 virus does not care if you are a native-born citizen, naturalized, a permanent resident or an undocumented worker, so neither do I. We are all in this together. COVID-19 is a lowest-common-denominator problem; neglect of the physical and medical needs of the most disadvantaged among us will increase the rate of transmission throughout the entire population. For the time being, there are no Americans; there are only people who happen to live in the United States.

"This and many other decisions I will be making in the coming days, weeks and months may be unpopular. I take full responsibility. If you disapprove of my policies, please vote against me in the coming election, which I personally guarantee will take place even if most votes are cast online.

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