Lesson from the past

From the NYT: “But America’s experience with polio should give us pause, not hope. The first effective polio vaccine followed decades of research and testing. Once fully tested, it was approved with record speed. Then there were life-threatening manufacturing problems. Distribution problems followed. Political fights broke out. After several years, enough Americans were vaccinated that cases plummeted — but they persisted in poor communities for over a decade. Polio’s full story should make us wary of promises that we will soon have the coronavirus under control with a vaccine. …

“Granted, there are countless differences between the fight against the coronavirus and the long-ago fight against polio. The global capacity for vaccine research and development is far greater than it was in the 1950s. Drug approval and manufacturing safety protocols have been refined since then, too. Already, just months into the current pandemic, there are far more vaccines in development against the coronavirus than there ever were against polio.”

Science? We don’t need no stinking science!

“Fauci’s transgression is to base his evaluations — after decades of public service and expertise fighting HIV/AIDS, Ebola, Zika and anthrax — on facts and logic that conflict with Trump’s chosen version of reality. Fauci has long said that only the virus can decide when normal life — things such as NFL games and schools reopening, for instance — will be safe again.

“Trump has always been battling the pandemic he wants to fight, rather than the one that actually exists, with a strategy shaped mostly by his political requirements as he seeks a second term. The pandemic arrived in the US despite his insistence that it would not be a problem. Now, with 84,000 Americans dead and 1.3 million infected, Trump argues that the country has prevailed over the virus and it’s time to get back to work.”

President Donald Trump's repudiation of Dr. Anthony Fauci has long been probable. Once the trusted doctor warned of the human cost of Trump's push to quickly reopen the country, it became inevitable.