Who Answers When a National Crisis Comes Calling?

I define a “national crisis” as a calamitous event that imperils the overall well-being of the nation’s citizenry. For America, I suppose there could be several answers depending on the crisis: The President, the National Guard, the military, the Department of Homeland Security. In this article I am going to focus on some instances where the President’s answer was not the right one, and end with a President giving the right answer.

Take the case of FDR, for instance, and his answering the nation’s call with his New Deal policies and programs after the First Great Depression. The popular belief and the opinion of some scholarly economists is that the New Deal rescued America. Not so at all, writes Jim Powell, in his 2003 book, FDR’s Folly, How Roosevelt and His New Deal Prolonged the Great Depression. Mr. Powell is a Senior Fellow at the Cato Institute, a libertarian “think tank.” What helped relieve the depressed economy was America’s involvement in WWII, a war that FDR contrived to arrange U.S. involvement by deliberately provoking Japan with embargoes and other hostile actions.

Abraham Lincoln did not answer the call over the Civil War, probably the most disastrous crisis ever within America’s boundaries. Indeed, he was a racist who started the war to preserve the Union so that it would be imperialistically strong enough to exploit the nation’s resources.

Woodrow Wilson did not answer the call during the Spanish flu pandemic that infected 500 million people around the world and that killed an estimated 50 to 100 million people. He downplayed the pandemic and forced America’s soldiers to continue fighting his unnecessary war.

George W. Bush answered the call when hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans in 2005, but his answer was not on behalf of the devastated residents. He sent in the bungling Department of Homeland Security, the fast growing bureaucratic and incompetent Federal agency, and, to add insult to injury, let the public-school system be privatized and ripped off along with leaving thousands of teachers suddenly without jobs. The hurricane washed away many homes in vulnerable areas, leaving thousands of suddenly homeless and impoverished citizens sequestered in the Superdome that quickly became a cesspool.

And did George W. Bush answer the call during America’s Second Great Depression of 2008? It was caused solely by the avarice and wrongdoing of the financial industry that plummeted millions of Americans into financial distress, His answer was hugely discriminatory. He played favorites. So, his sole priority was to bail out the financial industry and he ignored the plight of Mr. and Ms. America. Well, after all, he did descend from banksters.

Let’s now consider an exception, one in which the U.S. president actually did answer the call on behalf of Mr. and Ms. America, Donald J. Trump. Consider what he has done for the American people in response to the current pandemic crisis. His response is in stark contrast to his predecessors. I received a check from the U.S. Treasury entitled, “Economic Income Payment.” I never got anything from President George W. Bush, nor did any other ordinary Americans. They mostly got economic misery of personal indebtedness and burdened with holding down two jobs.

As for his handling of the pandemic crisis, despite much criticism and many jokes about it, he certainly is less irresponsible and incompetent than the overly funded, bureaucratic World Health Organization that fumbled the call. And his much maligned and derided comments about injecting disinfectants was off the cuff and followed the comments made by a Mr. Bryan, acting undersecretary for science and technology at the swamp, Department of Homeland Security, who told about tests purportedly showing that sunlight and disinfectants like bleach can kill the novel coronavirus on surfaces.” Perhaps most ire and derision ought to be directed at Bryan.

Obviously, Trump haters are going to hate my choice of Trump as a rare exemplar. One already has by telling me this:

You’ve got to be kidding, Gary. What has Trump done about the Covid-19 pandemic? First of all, he ignored warnings that it was coming by several months. As he has done throughout his presidency, he has lied and is unwilling to admit his mistakes.

He gives out false information and bogus cures that have led to the deaths of people that believe he knows what he is talking about. He has encouraged defying of governors who are trying to protect their constituents.

He has fired top scientists with knowledge about the coronavirus. He has been wrong every step of the way, claiming the virus would be over soon and that Democrats were making it up to discredit him. He has failed to supply test kits and other useful medical supplies.

I can go on and on, but why bother? It is obvious that Trump is way over his head with this crisis and has been wrong every step of the way. All this is obvious, Gary. What happened to your critical thinking skills?

End of scurrilous quote. And here was my rebuttal:

It’s good to hear from you, my friend, despite your rather insulting question at the end about my critical thinking skills. But rather than be offended, I will simply respond relying on my critical thinking skills, which are as sharp as ever even at my advanced age.

Rabid Trump haters are so blinded emotionally they cannot see or refuse to see the positive side of the man. Here are three positives as I appreciate them. 1. He has killed far fewer people on foreign lands than any of his predecessors. 2 His immigration policy is absolutely the correct one, because, as I have written about, immigration was instituted for two malevolent reasons, to get cheap labor and to keep the nation divided culturally. 3. He shredded NAFTA that was choking our friends south of the border.

End of quote. And end of article with this closing remark: Thank you, Dissident Voice, for allowing me to be so dissident here!

Gary Brumback, PhD, is a retired psychologist and Fellow of both the American Psychological Association and the Association for Psychological Science. Read other articles by Gary.