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President Trump likes to call the Covid-19 virus the China Virus, but he might as well call it a socialist virus as well. Because what Covid-19 is doing is undermining the "I'm alright Jack" ethic of much conservative individualism and libertarian ideology. The Trumpian predilection for MAGA baseball hats is matched only by their distain for facemasks and any concern for the welfare of others.

Trump has mocked Biden's habit of wearing a facemask in public when not speaking, and persisted in holding mass meetings - dubbed "supespreader events" by his detractors. As a time when deaths in the USA are averaging 1,000 a day, and infections have hit a new peak of 100,000 a day, his son Donald jnr. has described deaths from the disease as down to almost nothing.

Trumps has supported protests against lockdown restrictions and White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows has said the United States and the Trump administration are not going to control the pandemic and instead rely on the pharmaceutical industry to come up with a vaccine. This is in keeping with their opposition to big government and support for private industry.

The idea that individuals should accept restrictions on their personal freedom for the safety of others is alien to their individualistic ideology. The idea that the community needs to be protected from contagion runs counter to their "every man for himself" beliefs. And yet Trump was the first to avail of huge medical resources when he got ill - resources that are denied to most of his fellow citizens.

US voters have a choice on Tuesday to endorse this individualistic ideology or accept that the government, as representative of the wider community as legitimate concerns, and indeed a duty to take all measures possible to stop the spread of the disease and keep as many people as possible free of its debilitating effects. The Reaganite doctrine that the government is not there to help you, but is rather part of the problem has had its day.

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by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Sat Oct 31st, 2020 at 11:31:55 AM EST

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