Donald Trump's Super Duper Task Force To Reopen The Economy And Save My Flabby Ass In November is going just as well as everything else cooked up in this White House of Horrors. It's a shitshow. It was always, inevitably going to be a shitshow.

It started last week when the White House announced that a second task force on ECONOMY was in the works, to be staffed by the best and brightest.

Except no one would trust this crew of dimwits and vultures to open a bag of Doritos, much less America's economy during a pandemic.

"Of course no one wants to go near them," snarked Anthony Scaramucci to Newsweek. "He [Trump] has never been able to keep a council together." A fact confirmed to Newsweek by a White House source, who said that no industry leaders wanted to be That One Corporate Dude stuck in there to lend legitimacy to Jarvanka's after school economics club which the guidance counselor said would offset that B- in Trig on her college application.


So then it was on to Plan B, shout out a bunch of CEOs' names and pretend they've given their blessing to whatever insane bullshit the White House comes up with to "save" the economy by getting us all killed. Because if you can't find one or two CEOs to let you steal their respectability, then you might as well steal from 100 of them at once. On Tuesday, Trump released the names of members of his "Great American Economic Revival Industry Group."

The list of 100 CEOs and business leaders had some predictable names, like Jeff Bezos and Tim Cook. Of course it's appropriate for the White House to consult with the CEOs of Perdue, Cargill, Pepsi, and Kraft about ensuring the nation's food supply chain. Banks need to buy in to the recovery plans, health insurance companies will have to deal with the fallout from the greatest medical crisis since WWII, and companies like Walmart and UPS employ hundreds of thousands of people. Scott Gottlieb, the former FDA Commissioner and current fellow at the conservative American Enterprise Institute, has put out a serious plan to get us back to a place of safety.

Why Vince McMahon, Wolfgang Puck, and "Thought Leaders" Art Laffer and Stephen Moore got a seat at the table is ... less clear. But of course it doesn't matter, because the whole thing was just a massively bungled photo op. Like it always, always is with this crowd of incompetent narcissists.

As the Washington Post reports, this time Trump wasn't taking no for an answer to his request to borrow legitimacy from the nation's leaders. This time, he headed them off at the pass by keeping his plans under wraps.

Some of the groups involved in the calls were notified in advance of Trump's announcement, while others heard their names for the first time during the Rose Garden event Tuesday night.

"We got a note about a conference call, like you'd get an invite to a Zoom thing, a few lines in an email, and that was it. Then our CEO heard his name in the Rose Garden? What the [expletive]?" said one prominent Washington lobbyist for a leading global corporation, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss the sensitive matter. "My company is furious. How do you go from 'Join us on a call' to, 'Well, you're on our team?'"

And since they didn't know in advance that Trump wanted their audience for his dog and pony show teleconferences yesterday, several members of the reported task force were busy when the president summoned them for "consultation." Particularly the CEOs of major corporations, several of whom were on quarterly earnings calls yesterday, because that is a thing that tends to happen on April 15.

Worse yet, the CEOs failed to clap their hands like trained seals when Trump announced that the economy would snap right back on May 1, and soar to even greater heights. All they wanted to talk about was government support for business and workers while the economy sits in the deep freeze waiting for testing to ramp up so we can figure out who is actually sick. Annoying!

"I really don't understand how they are communicating on this," one CEO told Politico on condition of anonymity. "He's got to stop talking about turning the economy back on and start talking about making people feel safe, things that are happening around testing and the health care system. That's the only way you will really get the economy reopened over a period of time."

As council "member" David Solomon, CEO of Goldman Sachs, said on the earnings call he had to take instead of dialing in to the president's talking shop, "Unless people feel safe and secure and confident around the virus, the economic impact will continue in some way, shape or form." Which doesn't sound like everything will be hunky dory next month, TBQH.

Having failed to get the endorsement for his plan to throw open the doors and let the germs fall where they may, Trump did what he always does. HE LIED.

First he bragged about how all the smart people were just dying to talk to him:

These experts and innovators provided extremely productive feedback on how to safely reboot our economy. They gave us a lot of great ideas. We spoke to a lot of very, very smart people — the highest of the high-tech. The level of IQ on some of those calls was about the highest you've ever seen on a phone call, that I can tell you.

But we have a lot of great thought went into those calls, and a lot of questions came out and also statements — very strong statements, as to what they recommend. It was — I think it was a great day. We did a lot of — a lot of calling with a lot of very prominent people — but, more importantly, very smart people and people that love our country.

And then he made a promise he can't possibly keep.

And again, we'll have some openings that will be — will exceed our expectations. And they'll be safe, they'll be strong, but we want to get our country back. We want to get our country back. And we're going to do it and we're going to do it soon.

Third verse, same as the first.

[Newsweek / President Announces Great American Economic Revival Industry Groups / WaPo / Politico / Trump Coronavirus Briefing, 4/15]

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Liz Dye

Liz Dye lives in Baltimore with her wonderful husband and a houseful of teenagers. When she isn't being mad about a thing on the internet, she's hiding in plain sight in the carpool line. She's the one wearing yoga pants glaring at her phone.

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