The Vent is Too Damn High. A plan to hire General Motors and Ventec Life Systems to produce tens of thousands of ventilators was in the works. But then talks broke down over price. NYT: After Considering $1 Billion Price Tag for Ventilators, White House Has Second Thoughts. It’s not just that America failed to prepare for the need-surge for ventilators, masks, gloves, gowns, and hospital beds, it’s that, according to the president, we don’t really need them now. “I don’t believe you need 40,000 or 30,000 ventilators … You go into major hospitals sometimes, and they’ll have two ventilators. And now all of a sudden they’re saying, ‘Can we order 30,000 ventilators?'” (Dr Who meet Dr WTF…)

+ “Economists might not be able to say how much an individual person’s existence is worth, but they have figured out a way to calculate how much how much the average person is willing to pay to reduce the risk of death — which allows them to put a price tag on the collective value of saving one life.” FiveThirtyEight: What Should The Government Spend To Save A Life? (Spoiler alert: It’s more than the price of a ventilator.)

+ “Trump isn’t facing a political problem he can easily spin his way out of. He’s facing a lethal virus. It doesn’t give a damn what Donald Trump thinks of it or tweets about it. Spin and lies about COVID-19, including that it will soon magically disappear, as Trump claimed it would, don’t work. In fact, they have the opposite effect. Misinformation will cause the virus to increase its deadly spread.” Peter Wehner in The Atlantic: The President Is Trapped. (This a very interesting article with the wrong title. America is trapped.)