Tuesday, June 09, 2020

Thanks for the visit, Mr. "President"

When the pandemic was still young, I wrote about a company in Maine that's one of the leading manufacturers of nasal swabs in the company. Puritan Medical Products stepped right up and in, and began churning out a product that was essential to coronavirus testing. 

Perhaps he saw it on Pink Slip, perhaps not. But the current occupant of the Oval Office learned of the little company, in a little town, in a Trump-ist corner of the little ol' State of Maine. And, jonesing for the things he joneses for - adulation, the perception that he's a man of action, a few precious hours away from the protestors in Lafayette Park - he couldn't resist a trip up to Guilford, Maine, so he could parade by his fans - all decked out in Trump paraphernalia and (some) showing their true stripes by displaying the flag of the Confederacy (apparently unaware that their ancestors were killed while fighting on the winning/correct side of the Civil War) - and do a factory tour.

Alas, alack, and a lack of common sense:
...the swabs manufactured in the background during his visit will ultimately be thrown in the trash, the company said. 
Puritan Medical Products said it will have to discard the swabs, a company spokeswoman told USA TODAY in response to questions about the visit. 
It is not clear why the swabs will be scrapped, or how many. The company described its manufacturing plans for Friday as "limited" – but the disruption comes as public health officials in Maine and other states have complained that a shortage of swabs has hampered their ability to massively scale up coronavirus testing. (Source: USA Today)
There is some speculation that the swabs of the day had to be junked because Trump refused to wear a mask. More likely there were just too many people - Secret Service, press, the standard presidential retinue (I almost wrote residue there; hmmmm...).

In any case, although the company (and by all accounts most of the workers) was happy to host Trump, a day's production went out the window. This at a time when there's still a shortage of swabs and PPE. And at a time when:

Nearly a third of Maine nursing homes reported last month they had no nasal swabs to collect specimens, the Portland Press Herald reported. Nearly 61% of those that responded to a Maine Medical Directors Association survey said they had seven or fewer at their disposal.
Does the morale boost (mostly to Trump, but admittedly to the Guilford employees and the townies who support him) outweigh the loss of a day's production?

In the long run, it probably matters little. 

But, seriously, does this guy ever think of anyone other than himself? 

I'm delighted that Puritan Medical Products is doing well. They providean important product and much-needed employment in a poor town in the middle of nowhere. And they're expanding. So props to them. 

As for Trump's visit, all I can say is that when he's swanning around their facility, at least he isn't tweeting out his venomous lies and nastiness, or figuring out new ways to wreck the country.

Can't wait until he gets swabbed out of office.

1 comment:

Ellen said...

Swabbed out of office! Yes!