The Onion predicted Trump’s disinfectant insanity

The White House has not held a full coronavirus press briefing since last Thursday, which was the occasion when Trump made the widely ridiculed and condemned suggestion that injecting bleach and other disinfectants might be a cure for Covid-19. The next day, he and Pence held a 20-minute session and walked off without taking questions. The weekend went by without any briefings and today they announced that there would also be no briefing. It looks like they may be gone for good. Trump, like the coward he is, does not want to face challenging questions and, like Brave Sir Robin, “When danger reared it’s ugly head, He bravely turned his tail and fled.”

Of course, the press briefings could have gone on with just the scientific and public health personnel conducting them. That would have been very useful. But Trump cannot stand to have others be in the limelight, especially since there would be almost universal approval of such a move and constant references to how much better they are without him.

One month ago, the satirical website The Onion presciently ran this piece with the headline: Man Just Buying One Of Every Cleaning Product In Case Trump Announces It’s Coronavirus Cure

EVANSTON, WY—Throwing bottles of bleach, ammonia, and Drano into a cart at his local grocery store, area man Troy Mitchell was reportedly stocking up on one of every cleaning product he could find Wednesday in case President Donald Trump announces it is a coronavirus cure. “I got toilet bowl cleaner, carpet cleaner, Swiffer WetJet refills—you name it—just so me and my family will be ready if the president announces one of these things can treat Chinese virus,” said Mitchell, indiscriminately throwing containers of laundry detergent, Scrubbing Bubbles, grout whitener, steel wool, Febreze, Tilex mold and mildew remover, and laptop screen wipes into the cart, the contents of which rang up to $2,513.67 at checkout. “I’m not getting caught without some oven degreaser should Trump say it’s going to save us, so I better go ahead and grab me a bottle. After this, I’m hitting the hardware store to pick up a 5-gallon bucket of roof sealant to make sure I’m prepared in the event that turns out to be what gets rid of the Wuhan. Could just be 10 or 20 squirts of Windex into each nostril. You never know what might work in a pinch!” At press time, neighbors confirmed Mitchell had been found unresponsive on the floor of his bathroom with several empty aerosol cans of Rust-Oleum wax-and-tar-removing solvent by his head.

The saying “A lie can travel halfway around the world while the truth is still putting on its shoes” is wrongly attributed to Mark Twain but the sentiment is valid, whoever the original author was. Governments exploit this phenomenon all the time. They lie about something, knowing that many people will believe the lie and by the time the lie is debunked, people’s attention is elsewhere.

As a result, I actually would not be surprised if some Trump supporters heard about his crazy suggestion that ingesting disinfectant could be a cure for Covid-19 but have not heard the pushback against it. I shudder to think of the consequences.


  1. Who Cares says

    There are indications that the people around Trump used the bleach insanity to convince Trump to stop the briefings for another reason. They saw the poll numbers and while they initially showed a (small) bump due to the daily briefings the last week or so they were going down thanks to them. So cue a good (even for Trump) reason to stop doing the briefings.

  2. Jenora Feuer says

    Well, as others have been pointing out, the ‘Genesis II Church’ which considers their ‘Miracle Mineral Solution’ (essentially a precursor to bleach) to be a ‘sacrament’ appears to have been talking to Trump even before this.

    (The ‘Church’ in question was a pretty blatant attempt to get around rules regarding medical advertising by using freedom of religion as an argument. They’re hucksters through and through.)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *