It is something strange about how similar your thinking about America is to my own despite the two of us living on the opposite sides of the planet.
Not just geographically but also culturally and economically. I live in Norway one of the richest countries in the world, a part of western culture, just like America. Yet America is feeling so utterly alien to me.
I feel your exact same sentiment. This ridiculous calm discussion in American media about all the stuff they can do to fight COVID19 and the seemingly serious reflection on why COVID19 got so bad in the US.
The whole problem is obviously Trump. You feel like yelling to them, that they need to wake up. I was thinking about writing an article just like you with many of the same thoughts. But you beat me to it and anyway you did a better job at it than I ever could.
But maybe I could do a spiritual follow up at some point as I feel this isn’t a new problem in America.
I have long watched Americans debate things like their rising inequality and poverty offering all sorts of explanations such as change in technology. As if inequality just happens and you just stand next to it as a passive bystander watching it happen.
None of the “bright” American economists I read discussing this issue ever talks about politics. They never mention the Reagan revolution. How he was the beginning of an assault on unions, tearing down of the welfare state, deregulation, tax cuts for the rich etc.
No, they talk about it as if it is some naturally occurring phenomenon. Ignoring the vital role right-wing politics has played. But it seems taboo in the US for serious intellectuals to ever blame politics.
And so we end up with the Trump clown car, with all the clever people watching the chaos unable to point out the blindingly obvious.