Trump flails/fails in pandemic — Army Corp of Engineers comes through

The commander of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is Todd Semonite, a stocky three-star general who recently turned sixty-three. Every workday for the past forty-one years, he has served in uniform. On his left wrist is a FitBit; on his right, the kind of Casio calculator watch that he has worn since he was a teen-ager. In high school, in Vermont, Semonite wasn’t the biggest guy on the football team, but he played varsity center; he told a newspaper that size is “not really a disadvantage if you work hard.”…

He knows how to work hard.

George Washington created the position of chief engineer at the outset of the Revolutionary War, to oversee the design and construction of military batteries and fortifications. The Corps was formally established in 1802. Combat engineers solve problems through math and physics: they move troops (build the bridge) and protect them from attack (blow up the bridge). The military runs the Corps, but ninety-eight per cent of the agency’s thirty-six thousand employees are civilians: geographers, biologists, ecologists, architects…

…This past spring, when covid-19 overran the United States, Semonite was determined to provide vital infrastructure quickly. He told me, “America needs a capability to step up when something gets really, really hard.”

The article is about what he and the Corp, did, how they did it…and, most of all, it’s a tale written for readers of the NewYorker. We expect damned good writing and a thorough knowledge of the subject – to educate us on the topic.

Done.

3 thoughts on “Trump flails/fails in pandemic — Army Corp of Engineers comes through

  1. Dumpster fire says:

    “Winter is coming: Why America’s window of opportunity to beat back Covid-19 is closing” (STAT 8/10/20) https://www.statnews.com/2020/08/10/winter-is-coming-as-flu-season-nears-americas-window-of-opportunity-to-beat-back-covid-19-is-narrowing/
    “Though there’s been a slight decline in cases in the past couple of weeks, more than 50,000 Americans a day are being diagnosed with Covid-19. And those are just the confirmed cases.
    To put that in perspective, at this rate the U.S. is racking up more cases in a week than Britain has accumulated since the start of the pandemic.”
    Live updates: Florida and Georgia set new single-day records for coronavirus deaths https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2020/08/12/coronavirus-covid-live-updates-us/
    On Tuesday, as Florida set a daily record for covid-19 deaths, Marion County Sheriff Billy Woods prohibited his deputies and visitors to his office from wearing masks at work. https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2020/08/12/masks-florida-ban-billy-woods/

  2. Cassandra says:

    CDC director warns of ‘worst fall’ in history if people don’t follow COVID-19 guidelines https://thehill.com/policy/healthcare/511841-cdc-director-warns-of-worst-fall-in-history-if-people-dont-follow-covid “More than 5 million people have been infected with COVID-19 in the U.S., and more than 165,000 have died. On Wednesday alone there were 1,499 deaths, the deadliest day since May.”

    “The coronavirus is at least as deadly as the 1918 flu pandemic and the death toll could even be worse if world leaders and public health officials fail to adequately contain it, researchers warned in a study published Thursday in the medical journal JAMA Network Open.
    “What we want people to know is that this has 1918 potential,” lead author Dr. Jeremy Faust said in an interview, adding that the outbreak in New York was at least 70% as bad as the one in 1918 when doctors didn’t have ventilators or other advances to help save lives like they do today. “This is not something to just shrug off like the flu.” https://www.cnbc.com/2020/08/13/scientists-say-the-coronavirus-is-at-least-as-deadly-as-the-1918-flu-pandemic.html

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