Tag: COVID-19

Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Cryptic Phone Message is No April Fools

 

Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida issued a stay-at-home order that will go into effect Friday night at midnight. Our roads and byways are already empty, except for grocery shoppers and local labor that is still on job sites (i.e., painters, carpenters, etc.). Restaurants are closed – take-out only if they can. So a few minutes ago, a solemn and serious message came over our landline from our local authorities stating the new order. They said our local sheriff’s office will be making more clarifications available and take questions and answers at a certain time tomorrow. We get messages like this when an impending hurricane is approaching, or other weather hazards like extreme heat, where we are asked to conserve energy. But nothing like this.

I watched on our local PBS station the story of the 1918 Flu — how it started, escalated, the tolls. It was appalling and I couldn’t finish watching it. I was trying to understand how worldwide epidemics begin and how they take the world by storm. It’s a different world since 1918. Even with SARS, Bird Flu, and Swine Flu, the swiftness of this terrible scourge across the world is nothing like we have ever experienced. I’m scared and still working. So is my husband.

I picked up some extra items at the store today – they were out of toilet paper at an early hour. I feel very fortunate and blessed – we have no debt and worked hard the last few years to get there. We have some savings and are frugal. I have a small garden. I can get through a measly 30 days. I am scared for those that can’t. I’m shocked by a text where our local church asks us to pray for a parishioner who is having a foot amputated and her husband cannot be there because of COVID-19 restrictions. Funerals are limited to only a few family members, so good-byes have to be done from a distance.

The coronavirus crisis has gotten to the point where Jim Geraghty is saying nice things about the New England Patriots and owner Robert Kraft after Kraft dispatched the team plane to China to pick up 1.2 million N95 masks. Jim and Greg also tackle the brutal loss of 6.6 million more jobs in the past week and wonder how soon we’ll have no choice but to reopen various sectors or regions of our economy. And they throw their hands up as Georgia GOP Gov. Brian Kemp says he only realized this week that COVID-19 could be spread by people before they start feeling sick.

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Unexpected Disaster and Unexpected Triumph: Spring Storms and Flowering Futures

 

An important day in history will coincide with one of our darker days this month,* and President Trump should be ready to link the lessons of the past with our current condition. On April 11, 1970, Americans saw the increasingly mundane sight of yet another Apollo mission rocketing towards the Moon. There were no grand new tricks promised to amaze the global audience. Just two missions after “one giant leap for mankind,” Americans had a false sense of security about an extremely dangerous enterprise in the most unforgiving conditions. Then, on the third day of the Apollo 13 mission, we were given a giant bucket of ice water in the face: “Houston, we’ve had a problem.” That was 50 years ago this month, and what an auspicious time to celebrate America!

President Trump’s team must seize the opportunity now, preparing a video presentation and live link-up of the surviving key players, to remind the nation, at our likely Chinese coronavirus nadir, that there was another very dark week in which all seemed lost but Americans refused to lose. Get on Jim Lovell, who said “Houston, we’ve had a problem,” and Gene Kranz, the NASA chief flight director on duty when the threat unfolded, whose autobiography is Failure Is Not An Option. Celebrate our ingenuity, our resolve, our resilience, and link it all with our current troubles and responses.

Link the disasters of Apollo 1, Challenger, and Columbia. In each case, we were not expecting catastrophe. In each case, we mourned our losses, solved the problems, and advanced with greater safety preparedness. So too, we will now really learn from our response to the latest pandemic, because we know it will not be our last great challenge by a disease.

Join Jim and Greg as they cheer multiple health insurers easing up on deductibles, co-pays, and coinsurance over coronavirus. They also wince as the head of the Centers for Disease Control says it will take two years to fully defeat COVID-19. And they fume as the World Health Organization and others pretend Taiwan doesn’t exist in order to appease China and, in the process, ignores one the most successful coronavirus mitigation efforts in the world.

In a time when our physical health is taking center stage, our own Dave Carter invited radio, television, and podcast personality Dave Sussman to talk about the impact of the Coronavirus to the nation’s economic health as well. Drawing from his own experience in the world of finance and business, Mr. Sussman offers a sober assessment of the road ahead.

Then, taking care to not allow the program to take a morbid turn, Dave checks in with Ricochet Contributor Susan Quinn to discuss her maiden excursion into the world of pizza delivery and the result is a pleasant conversation that is rich in laughs and memories. And as if things weren’t crazy enough, Dave makes a phone to his Cajun friend, Alphonse Fontenot, who has quarantined himself somewhere in the bayous of Louisiana. The results are, predictably, hilarious.

Seth Barron and Nicole Gelinas discuss the latest developments in New York City’s fight against the coronavirus, the impact of the city’s lockdown on future growth, and the response of state and local leaders.

As New York continues under lockdown, the effects of the coronavirus outbreak are becoming evident: the city’s death toll has passed 1,000, with more than 40,000 confirmed cases. In addition to health-care professionals, essential public employees like the city’s transit workers and NYPD officers are falling ill at a troubling rate. Mayor Bill de Blasio and Governor Andrew Cuomo have responded to the crisis with varying degrees of effectiveness, but the outbreak has revealed a lack of preparedness for a public-health emergency of this scale.

Join Jim and Greg for two good martinis and some craziness. They welcome evidence that the spread of COVID-19 may be slowing in New York. They also salute private industries shifting their focus in big ways to meet the demand for ventilators, masks and more. And they roll their eyes as Nancy Pelosi begins eyeing the next big spending bill.

Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Quote of the Day: Plague Year

 

It was about the beginning of September, 1664, that I, among the rest of my neighbours, heard in ordinary discourse that the plague was returned again in Holland; for it had been very violent there, and particularly at Amsterdam and Rotterdam, in the year 1663, whither, they say, it was brought, some said from Italy, others from the Levant, among some goods which were brought home by their Turkey fleet; others said it was brought from Candia; others from Cyprus. It mattered not from whence it came; but all agreed it was come into Holland again.

We had no such thing as printed newspapers in those days to spread rumours and reports of things, and to improve them by the invention of men, as I have lived to see practised since. But such things as these were gathered from the letters of merchants and others who corresponded abroad, and from them was handed about by word of mouth only; so that things did not spread instantly over the whole nation, as they do now. But it seems that the Government had a true account of it, and several councils were held about ways to prevent its coming over; but all was kept very private. — Defoe, Daniel. A Journal of the Plague Year 

Member Post

 

Faced with the death of 25 corona victims and 1020 confirmed cases as of 9AM in a population of 8.5 million, Wreck it Ralph Northam place Virginia in bondage today through June 10. Also, Virginia residents are to make bricks without his supplying straw. Governors are very competitive people, and with his brother governor Cuomo […]

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Member Post

 

President Trump was persuaded by his medical experts’ latest top end estimates to keep Americans unemployed, their businesses crashing, though the whole month of April. He said he would have a briefing or presentation on Tuesday where the claimed numbers would be shown on charts of some sort. The president led with good news, cause […]

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Member Post

 

Some societal problems aren’t real to people until it happens to themselves or someone they know well. For me, the level of concern edged upwards when news of the Diamond Princess started hitting my news sources, as my parents-in-law had just boarded a three-week Caribbean and trans-Atlantic cruise. Mid-cruise, ports of call started closing, or […]

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. The Grim Costs of Total Lockdowns

 

The coronavirus crisis raises two urgent questions for the United States: First, what are the likely number of deaths from the coronavirus in either the absence or presence of a determined program of social intervention? Second, what is the set of tools, both coercive and noncoercive, that should be used to implement the most effective interventions in light of the limited resources that are available? Both questions give rise to multiple, often clashing considerations, and they require urgent answers given the rising anxiety about the disease. As of March 30, a total of over 143,000 cases have been confirmed in the United States, with just over 2,500 deaths, many of which are concentrated in the New York metropolitan area.

It is critical to take a step back from the immediate crisis in order to articulate a few fundamental propositions that should help place this problem in context.

The first proposition is that there are no acceptable market solutions on how best to allocate scarce social resources for dealing with the coronavirus crises. Markets use wealth as a medium of exchange, and do nothing directly to satisfy the subjective preferences, or individual utilities, of market players. In ordinary times, the correlation between utility and wealth is generally strong enough that it becomes unwise to allocate resources on the basis of utility without reference to wealth. A set of charitable institutions grew up alongside markets to provide assistance to those individuals who had evidently high utility but no wealth to satisfy them. The family is one such institution, but, where it breaks down, private orphanages, hospitals, and countless other charitable institutions grow up to fill that void along with some government programs.

Member Post

 

It’s National Doctor’s Day. For those on the front lines of the war on COVID-19 / Wuhan Coronavirus, I offer my sincere, from the bottom of my heart, thanks. Despite the bureaucracy and demanding hours, despite the very real risk to your own health, you are saving lives. Preview Open

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Words Matter: Social or Physical Distance?

 

Words have meaning. Should we “socially distance” ourselves from others? Last Friday, March 20, Wil Addison joined Alexander Hamilton III on his radio show and podcast, The Hamilton Corner. He was on to discuss maintaining a Christian witness in the time of the Chinese coronavirus. One comment, in particular, caught my ear.

Wil Addison said that we are using the wrong word. We should not be putting social distance between ourselves. Instead, we should be maintaining a physical distance. Indeed, if you listen closely to the recommendations, you are being advised to maintain six feet of separation, to engage in or refrain from physical acts. So, we should absolutely be protecting each other with physical distancing.

Join Jim and Greg as they cheer much quicker COVID-19 tests, new treatments, and progress on a vaccine. They also discuss the likely impact of America shutting down for at least another month. And they shake their heads at the tactics of New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo.

Member Post

 

We have been told that a vaccine for the SARS-CoV-2 is 12 to 18 months away. While this is a pretty fast time for a vaccine, perhaps we could go faster. Here are a WAG* that I have that might speed things up. The usual process is as follows, after animal testing: – Phase I – […]

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