Ask A Genius 535 – Denialistic Shit

In-Sight Publishing

Ask A Genius 535 – Denialistic Shit

March 25, 2020

[Beginning of recorded material]

Scott Douglas Jacobsen: What could happen? There may be half of a million deaths between mid-June and mid-September.

Rick Rosner: It may happen. We may get lucky. The disease may get less virulent and less easily spread in the Summer. Some viruses aren’t as effective as spreading in warm weather. We may get a little miracle there.

Or a number of competent leaders below the national level may arise and educate each other and share resources, even in the absence of competent national leadership or national leadership may just somehow go around Trump and start doing what needs to be done and ignore him.

Some news stations – CNN, NBC – already decided not to carry most of his daily brief conferences because what he says is dangerous, not accurate, or both.

Jacobsen: How is the Christian Right taking advantage of this? Their mass radio shows and followings, etc.

Rosner: People like Jim Bakker have been taking advantage of it. For the last 40 years(!) has been selling bullshit products, he has been told by some agency. It is against the law to sell the shit he is selling and saying that stuff about that he is selling.

Others say to give them money and they will pray you to safety. Jerry Falwell, Jr.’s Liberty University said people can go back to class. So, there might be some temporary political advantage, but it’s reasonable to think that they’ll get their asses kicked eventually as people get sick from the shit in numbers that are too big for people to ignore them for political reasons.

I don’t know what those numbers have to be because the numbers aren’t big enough, yet. Conservatives rightwing lunatics are still saying all sorts of denialistic shit. Everybody should go back to work. It’s better for a few people to die than for the economy to die.

They spread conspiracy theories about where the virus comes from and who it is targeted at. Eventually, if it gets bad enough, people will listen to regular news, even those who do not listen to the news and trust it – out of desperation to save themselves and their families.

I don’t know how bad it’ll have to get.

Jacobsen: I think New York will be the first test case.

Rosner: Yes, but New York is a fairly big state. By acreage, most of New York is conservative, but still it’s not southern conservative. Florida is going to be your test case where the infections are going to go crazy and the governor is shitty.

We will see what it is like with a failed state shitty response.

Jacobsen: How many countries could become failed states because of this?

Rosner: You already have failed states before this like Libya. I don’t know how many failed states there are in the world now, e.g., Eritrea, Somalia, parts of Congo, etc. I don’t know. There are parts of Africa where we are not getting any information because there aren’t any agencies to share any information.

So, I don’t know. You probably have at least 8 states or nation that are already failed states already. Figure that some of the failed states border states that are nearly failed states. Some whole regions are just a complete mess.

For every failed state that we have now, an adjacent state will be tipped into somewhat failedness, maybe 12, 15, 16, failed states by the time this is over. I don’t know that a state that fails because of this is as dangerous to the rest of the world as a failed state where there is genocide, or whether a state that is rife with the virus is more dangerous than one that is genocidal.

I think there will be failed states. The national guard may have to go in there. Although, I don’t know exactly that will work because we have a very incompetent national government, where Trump is interested in covering his ass and Trump may not send.

He has already implied threats or is threatening that he will not give you the shit you need in your state to address the virus if doesn’t like you. We are already seeing underreporting. There continues to be a shortage of tests. It is getting better.

We still have less than one quarter the number of tests per capita as South Korea. Even testing at the same proportion as South Korea won’t do it, they tested like crazy and contained it. Even people who die, they aren’t necessarily being added to the death rolls because even in death they don’t get tested.

Then their deaths are attributed to pneumonia. Nobody has the time or the resources to test them.

Jacobsen: There could be an easy solution there. People could tally the average trendline before this and then subtract between 2020 and 2021.

Rosner: Right, Trump is not going to embrace them. He wants them to be as low as possible.

Jacobsen: Do you think he’s in over his head?

Rosner: Even before his presidency, nobody made any money investing in Trump. He’s never really made money from competence. He’s always been a huckster and a bullshit artist and somebody who skips out on debts via lawsuits, defaulting on loans, and getting new loans to pay for the loans he defaulted on.

He’s never been good at anything legitimate. He’s always been a blowhardy dipshit with only a certain craven interestingness that got him the TV gig. So, he’s been in over his head, as a businessman, as an entrepreneur, and then as president. He’s never been president. He’s uncurious.

He’s got a short attention span. He’s unwilling to learn. He goes with his gut. He goes for things that bring him money or status at the expense of other people. He has none of the qualities that he would need to address the current situation.

[End of recorded material]


Rick Rosner

American Television Writer


Rick Rosner

Scott Douglas Jacobsen

Founder, In-Sight Publishing


In-Sight Publishing


[1] Four format points for the session article:

  1. Bold text following “Scott Douglas Jacobsen:” or “Jacobsen:” is Scott Douglas Jacobsen & non-bold text following “Rick Rosner:” or “Rosner:” is Rick Rosner.
  2. Session article conducted, transcribed, edited, formatted, and published by Scott.
  3. Footnotes & in-text citations in the interview & references after the interview.
  4. This session article has been edited for clarity and readability.

For further information on the formatting guidelines incorporated into this document, please see the following documents:

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License and Copyright

In-Sight Publishing by Scott Douglas Jacobsen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at and


© Scott Douglas Jacobsen, Rick Rosner, and In-Sight Publishing 2012-2019. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Scott Douglas Jacobsen, Rick Rosner, and In-Sight Publishing with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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