There is little that encapsulates the US response to the coronavirus crisis quite as succinctly as the theatrics around US President Donald Trump’s brush with Covid-19: bluster, bombast, denial, callous disregard, and a hefty dose of magical thinking.

From announcing his diagnosis on Twitter, to his astoundingly irresponsible drive-by to thank supporters outside Walter Reed hospital, to whipping off his face mask on his crowing return to the White House, to suggesting a vaccine will arrive “momentarily”, it’s been an exercise in the politics of spectacle – one utterly at odds with the lived experience of the average American...

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