Trump has been hesitant to invoke the Defense Production Act for medical gear. But he's already used it hundreds of thousands of times for weapons and bombs

As if there wasn’t enough evidence for that already :wink:


The White House did use the DPA this past Friday, March 27, to instruct General Motors to focus production on ventilators, although the announcement came several hours after General Motors had already announced their own plans to do so.

This whole story, the more I learn about it, is enraging and awful. An industry group was formed where company heads were looking to see what they could do to help. Not profit, just help. I guess GM was part of that, and got hooked up with the ventilator maker, Ventec. GM offered its manufacturing facilities and labor - at cost - to help increase production.

They were moving ahead with plans when Trump goes off the rails, angrily claiming that “GM” “promised” a certain number of ventilators, were demanding too much money, and specifically attacked GM’s female CEO (what a surprise). The problem is: GM promised nothing - Ventec was doing all the work with price and production numbers, though there’s no evidence they had promised anything either, and pricing hadn’t even been negotiated. (Ventec had made its production plans without discussing it with the government because they figured someone would want the vents; they weren’t counting on a government contract of any sort.) For good measure Trump called GM’s long-standing plan to sell a factory “dumb” when he had previously lauded it.

So Trump apparently invokes the DPA - though it turns out he didn’t - on something that was already happening, apparently just as a response to criticism that he hadn’t been using it, just so he could pretend to play the tough guy, making “tough decisions” that companies wouldn’t (except they were), to show how helpful he was being in the crisis. But the enraging thing, the REALLY ENRAGING thing here, is that not only was Trump not being helpful with his play acting, he was yet again actively HURTING efforts. It’s just thrown a monkey wrench into GM/Ventec’s efforts, but more than that, it’s actively dissuading other companies from doing anything. Other members of that industry group that was formed to help have backed out, worried that if they did anything, Trump would attack them, too.

Yet again, we see how Trump’s whole idea of leadership consists of attacking. Since he can’t attack the problem, he can only attack other people who either a) aren’t fulfilling the impossible promises Trump made, or b) are being more helpful than Trump is in this crisis. But since Trump is doing nothing helpful, that’s literally everyone.


We knew this during his campaign, we knew this when he was enthroned, we know this still: helping people is really off-brand for trump. There’s a reason his catch phrase is not, “welcome aboard”. Trump is all about hurting people he doesn’t like. And if you don’t like him, he doesn’t like you.

If he directs any federal aid toward the states, it would have to be in reward of their support for him in the election.Blue states need not apply.

There was never any reason to expect this to go any better than it has. If he is re-elected, I expect hot civil war.

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There was a weird moment when the US was asking another country for masks, and the confused response was, “But… these are the masks you’ve been sending us!” The Trump administration didn’t know what the hell it was doing.


I respectfully disagree. Trump’s logic is valid. His syllogisms are self consistent. Its his opening premises that are completely fucked.

Refusing to delve into the thought process of their opposition is exactly why Democrats lose so goddam always. Republicans are much better at deconstructing and attacking the logic of their opponents, without accepting it as valid.

I advocate something that might sound like a paradox: become cold-blooded, yet big-hearted. In this case, cold blooded means don’t react emotionally to every idea you entertain. Big hearted means being able to think clearly about agendas that are different from your own.

I am perfectly OK with working toward the benefit of republicans when it aligns with my own interests, and this pandemic is an excellent opportunity to put that into practice.

What trumpublican is working in your interest?

None at all, as far as I can tell. But staying healthy is in everyone’s interests, the virus does not discriminate. Those who say, “fine, let the red states all go to church and share germs” are advocating for the messy needless deaths of lots of Democrats, athiests, and unaffiliated innocents.

He is not “hesitant”, he is adamantly opposed, because this way he is basically able to direct enormous jacked-up prices from the individual states who are bidding up these items, into the greedily waiting maws of his cronies who are making a fortune. If he used the DPA no one would be making those obscene free-market profits. (And you all know what the tiny speartip of plutocrats reaping the befits will turn around and do with a sliver of their profits between now and November, right?)

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