And Donald Trump says the news media is at least partly to blame.
Here's what he said on Twitter yesterday: “Saudi Arabia and Russia are arguing over the price and flow of oil. That, and the Fake News, is the reason for the market drop!”
All I know is that every day I grow more and more afraid to look at my already very modest portfolio of investments that I've worked my entire life to generate and upon which the livelihood of my wife and I depend. And since this all began, as of today, we've "lost" nearly 15 percent of those savings.
You can say, well, that's only on paper. It will come back. No worries.
To which I say, Really? When will that happen? How much worse will it get? Will we live long enough to see those balances return?
Donald Trump is an irresponsible, ego driven imbecile. His people are now talking about a financial package to help companies and, perhaps, workers who are being affected economically. Reportedly, that package will include a payroll tax cut for businesses, provide help for hourly workers, and assistance to industries affected by the outbreak.
That news helped to steady the market, at least temporarily, sending it ahead by 800 points at the opening, but drifting back to just 500 points by midday. We'll see now if the political parties can put aside their petty differences in this election year and accomplish something worthwhile.
Nevertheless, Trump continues to poo poo the coronavirus, calling it a flu, and saying look on the bright side, "Good for the consumer, gasoline prices are coming down!"
Yea, right, that 10 cents a gallon that gas has declined in the last couple weeks is really going to offset the losses that are being experienced by everyday people, including retirees, like me.
This guy keeps trying to undo everything President Barack Obama did because he hates the guy and is so jealous of him that he can't see straight. And so, now he blames Obama for insufficient test kits being available, when Obama hasn't been in office for nearly four years and his own policies actually are to blame.
Here's what Trump said last Wednesday at the White House:
“The Obama administration made a decision on testing that turned out to be very detrimental to what we’re doing. And we undid that decision a few days ago so that the testing can take place in a much more accurate and rapid fashion. And now we have tremendous flexibility. Many, many more sites. Many, many more people. And you couldn’t have had that under the Obama rule, and we ended that rule very quickly.”
Here's what Vice President Pence said on the same occasion:
“The last administration asserted FDA jurisdiction over testing and the development of tests like this. The president changed that on Saturday so that now, as I spoke to several governors this morning, the states now have the ability to actually conduct the coronavirus test in state labs, university laboratories.”
Uh, oh, here comes that troublesome "fake news media" again. The Associated Press did a little fact checking and here's what AP reported:
THE FACTS: They’re trying to blame Barack Obama for something his administration didn’t do.
It’s not true that an Obama-era rule limited laboratories run by companies, universities and hospitals from developing and running tests for the coronavirus during an emergency. No such regulation existed.
The Trump administration’s action last Saturday only undid a policy that its own Food and Drug Administration put in place. The new action lets labs develop and use coronavirus diagnostic tests before the agency reviews them. Previously, the FDA had only authorized use of a government test developed by the CDC.
FDA guidance drafted during the Obama administration called for tighter regulation of so-called laboratory-developed tests, a market traditionally not overseen by the agency. But that guidance was not brought into effect. Even if it had been, it would not have applied to public health emergencies such as the coronavirus.
So while the egomaniac Donald Trump misleads and lies, people are getting sick, people are dying, people are afraid to go to work and school, they are loading up on toilet paper and other supplies for fear they'll be stuck at home, and they are watching their life savings go down the drain.
And Trump can't even bring himself to stop shifting blame and instead take concrete action to help get us through this crisis. He simply cannot get out of the way of his own inflated ego. And that only makes a terrible situation much worse.