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Guns, Germs and Steel in the Trump era

By Kristof Decoster
on January 25, 2017

I hate to break it to all of you but after just a few days of “executive orders” (and linked nauseous pictures), it’s clear that with the Donald we can just about forget about global health, let alone planetary health. Sorry Richard. There’s just no way you can frame global health appropriately for the new times, in order to “get his orange ear(s)”.  Not even the “business/investment” case for global health, or to “make America really great again”. No, I only see one way out. (Donald: no worries, what follows is just an ‘alternative fact’, nothing serious, at least in our liberal world view 🙂 )

Tom Frieden probably had it right a few weeks ago when he joked that the future for CDC wasn’t perhaps all that bad given the fact that Trump is a self-proclaimed “germophobe”. So let’s think a bit further along these lines in other words. Say, the Trump-version of ‘Guns, Germs and Steel’.

We have a hunch the Donald will take care of Guns and Steel himself in the coming years, given how keen he seems to be to take on the Chinese in their own backyard, but with Germs we might want to help him a bit. (I say this, having just come back from Geneva, the so called “global health capital”, with – yet again – a sore throat, so let’s say I’m a bit “inspired” )

Wouldn’t it be just lovely if some really nasty germ hit the Donald somewhere, say, in his botoxed face, on his (rather tiny) hands, or, even, well, in his “wherever”…?  It would have to be a really nasty, ultra-resistant  and exotic specimen – he’s fast getting used to nasty species anyway after last weekend – and the experience should leave him totally shattered. Enter some great side-effects on his megalomaniac ego.

But Trump needs to survive – as I heard in some shady Geneva corridors, now that the Donald is president, we have to protect him by all means, as the other guy (Pence) is even worse. In order to then, having learnt all lessons needed, be able to take  “unpresidented” measures to boost global health security, tackle AMR, and all the rest of it, around the world.

As for planetary health, we still need an ‘alternative’ / additional game plan, I hate to say 🙂

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