The Corona Virus Domino Enroute to Collapse

Before the Corona virus appeared, the economic system was teetering along like a delusional drunk on a cliff edge. Now a “Black Swan” like no recent other, has been injected into the collapse parthenon. In the video discussion below Professor Guy McPherson, Peter Miller and Kevin Hester discuss the possibility that COVID19  could be the domino to if not trigger collapse, be a catalyst to speeding up our decent into the abyss.

An audio only version of the discussion can be found here at ‘Podbean’.
Professor McPherson and I have both previously discussed how fragile the supply chain is on a good day let alone during the ‘Perfect Storm’ we are currently navigating. That video and links to the David Korowicz paper titled; “Trade Off: Financial system supply-chain cross contagion – a study in global systemic collapse” is embedded here;

In this recent article from ‘The Atlantic’ is a report titled “The Modern Supply Chain is Snapping”.     This supply chain is already ‘Snapping’ when we are in the very early stages of this pandemic.
We discussed the ‘Ponzi Scheme” that is latest Wall St Bailout; “The New York Federal Reserve Bank said it will offer $1 trillion of overnight loans a day through the end of this month to large banks. That is in addition to $1 trillion in 14-day loans it is offering every week.”Federal Reserve to lend additional $1 trillion a day to large banks.

I mentioned this article about the imminent collapse of the Swiss health system; Swiss hospitals face collapse in 10 days if virus keeps spreading

Peter referred to Professor McPherson’s latest analysis titled Edge of Extinction: Managing COVID-19 and the Aerosol Masking Effect. I have covered that issue previously at this blog; Global Dimming Keeping the Planet Habitable 

Click on the embedded links for verification of the information discussed, subscribe to the blog for the unvarnished analysis as we circle the drain. The predicament can only be worse than we know.

I'm an anti-imperialist, environmental activist and blue ocean sailor, who is passionate about the earth and all it's inhabitants without favour. Brace for imminent impact as we bare witness to the non-linear unraveling of the biosphere and habitability disappearing for most if not all complex life on the only habitable planet we know of. To quote President Niinistö in North Russia: ‘If We Lose the Arctic, We Lose the World’. Folks we have lost the Arctic.

Posted in Aerosol Masking Effect, Collapse, Peter Miller, Professor Guy McPherson
25 comments on “The Corona Virus Domino Enroute to Collapse
  1. My two biologist friends, the neighbor around the corner and oldest friend over on Windward Side of Oah’u that I’m talking and sharing read info with are both saying this is SARS II. Remember SARS I in late 2002? The US was getting close to a vaccine in early 2003 but Wbush said god told him to invade Iraq and the funding got quashed in favor of weapon systems, Imperial overreach, mass murder, war crimes, and of course OIL…aided and abetted by the Democratic Party. 2 faces 1 party.

    So we can all thank Shotgun Dick Cheney and his little batfuck crazy sock puppet Wbush and Rumsfeld and all the generals and all the corporations that are sucking at their tits for this little bump in the road called SARS II.

    Here we are today, a year at least away from a vaccine. And one of the top Pathologists at the UofWashington whose lab has been in the heart of this working on a vaccine just died of it. The lab is in an uproar. Who next was my thought.

    Heard a top Stanford University Infectious Disease doc talking about this on DemocracyNow yesterday or Thursday’s afternoon radio show. She was extremely pointed in it, extremely informative, and if what she said didn’t scare the shit out of the millions of US citizens that probably heard the broadcast, those that caught her comment “…and this isn’t even the worst virus we fear possible” and Amy Goodman kind of choked at that point. I’m sure that statement shook those people that were paying attention. Interesting she also called this SARS II, and was one of the scientists working on the SARS 1 coronavirus outbreak in Asia back in 2002.

    There are 4-6 coronavirus running around the world at this point. This strain is more like the Black Plague virus. It is NOT the flu.
    __________

    My best friend DP was picked to be part of a county-sponsored task force of emergency people to come up with a plan on mitigation, isolation, survival if a Soviet biological warfare attack happened to that university town. The psycho Reagan era, mid-1980s. After months of studies they came up with this plan. Everybody stay home, those that die rot in their homes, those that live, starve to death. Needless to say the county commissioners were not amused. Neither, however, were the emergency people, scientists, and medical folk that were involved in the study.
    __________

    Economy is collapsing here, just fucking disappeared like an ice cube on the sidewalk in Death Valley. How’s that for an appropriate mental image? Disaster Capitalism at its finest is kicking in, the wealthy need more wealth, but doubtful that’ll change any damned thing. Just like the living biosphere and staggering climate cycles are collapsing in front of us. Eat the rich anyone? Long pig BBQ?

    Kevin, I’m sure you noticed the last few posts from arctic-news.blogspot, yes? We just crossed the 2’C threshold. Oh my but we’ve all been expecting that now haven’t we?

    The wealthy neoliberals that rule in Washington DC (and I think most other countries of the world are the same rulers) refused tests from Germany or World Health more than a month ago. No test kits no virus numbers so go to Disney World and Universal Studios in Florida and have a great time. Fly back to California and a few days later die of it. And of course the family says ‘we’re gonna miss him so much.’ I love the article’s statement of a “TRAGIC TURN OF EVENTS.’ That’s irony for ya.

    I’m big on irony.

    Link:

    34-year-old California man died of coronavirus after recent trip Disney World, Universal Studios

    https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2020/3/20/1926202/-34-year-old-California-man-died-of-coronavirus-after-recent-trip-Disney-World-Universal-Studios

    So I guess the timeline looks pretty much like this:

    Flew to FL
    went to meeting
    went to Disney
    started feeling ill
    flew home two days later
    went to hospital
    was confirmed positive 6 days later
    then dead meat

    Look at the size of the crowds in the Disney picture link in the article. I have no words for…that. None. Then there was this article that complemented the previous SO WELL that I’m attaching a link to it, too. Also complete with shoulder to shoulder crowd pictures:

    Mobs of people showed up for Disney World’s closing fireworks show even though experts are begging people to avoid crowds

    https://www.businessinsider.com.au/disney-world-florida-closing-fireworks-show-2020-3?_ga=2.13500599.1600918115.1584542706-1453046877.1579460081
    ____________

    Ya just can’t make this shit up. The Tom Tomorrow ‘Stupidverse’ comic pretty much spells this all out and has been forever. The guy is a cartoonist version of George Carlin I think.

    Speaking of which, I’ve been watching some of Carlin lately. Very appropriate since it sure fits the times and how I’m feeling. Just the kind of ironic black humor that goes with whatever the hell is coming down upon our heads from every direction. Until the power goes off. Best take in the ironic humor now just in case…
    ______________

    Weather: In the mid-60s here at 49’North latitude in mid-March, almost 20’C! Being in the sun is much warmer but when you walk into the shade and look at a thermometer it’s reading 45’F. Killed the first mosquito landing on my arm yesterday sitting with a book on the porch. Far too early for those. First male mountain bluebird showed up yesterday, too, and there are robins hopping around after worms.

    Hospitals are asking for anybody that can sew to make fabric face masks because there aren’t enough for the RNs and docs to use normally. They can then save the N95 masks for suspected SARS II patients. Pillowcases are suggested but any closely-woven but breathable fabric is acceptable. They are short-term wearing but can be washed and disinfected.

    400 people were lined up outside the giant pawn shop 20 miles south out of the mountains in Deer Park Spokane County last Saturday. To buy ammunition and guns. The sold out. Probably half a million dollars in ammo. There isn’t a bullet to be had in this county nor Spokane County. Five years of stashed butt wipe and thousands of bullets. That’ll save your dumb ass, eh MAGA-MAN?

    A former Kenpo student and best friend of my stepson back in the late 90s at Mt. Shasta High School is down in Chico Calif. working in a sweatshop factory full of Mexicans welding agricultural machines paying his way through college. He’s nearly the only white guy. Nobody in N95 masks, no precautions at all, and they have to stand mouth to ear to hear anything. And while he was talking with me standing outside his apartment building two nights ago at midnight or so the Domino’s Pizza delivery guy showed up with his pizza. I could hear them talking as David paid the guy. Neither were wearing masks. The governor of California just shut the state down yesterday. I imagine I’ll hear from him about this as he’s gotten an earful from me the last six weeks about this. He said I’ve been running 100% in my predictions…
    _____________

    From counterpunch’s Roaming Charges. I thought you all might enjoy some of this…irony from Jeffrey St. Clair:

    + I have five really good friends who are emergency room doctors or nurses. It is grueling work in the best of times, often operating in a near-constant state of triage. They are among the most selfless and hardworking people I know and are all now working insane shifts treating dozens of people a day with coronavirus symptoms. Unable to confirm a diagnosis due to lack of tests, they are sending most of the patients back home, while placing themselves at extreme risk of contracting the virus. They are holding the system together while it splinters, quite literally performing triage on patients and the health care system itself. But it can’t be sustained much longer.

    + We’re about to see what happens to a nation whose economy has been kept afloat by the service sector when it shuts down the service sector…

    + MAGAmerica in a nutshell: “The Chinese scientist who invented the coronavirus test had worked at the University of Florida for 25 years and raised his kids here but left, along with two other notable researchers, because of the Trump administration investigating them.”

    **NOW THAT’S IRONY!!!

    + Apparently, the Vampires don’t only come out at night. Consider Sen. Ron Johnson (who Wisconsin elected over Russ Feingold): “Getting coronavirus is not a death sentence except for maybe no more than 3.4 percent of our population. We don’t shut down our economy because tens of thousands of people die on the highways.” (By the way, 3.4 percent of the US population is: 10.8 million people.)

    After attending a secret briefing on COVID-19, Johnson sold off $25 million in stock equity. Then he voted against the coronavirus relief package…

    + While you’re digging graves, here are some political ones to consider…Senators who voted “No” on the coronavirus relief package…

    Marsha Blackburn
    James Inhoffe
    Ron Johnson
    James Lankford
    Mike Lee
    Rand Paul
    Ben Sasse
    Tim Scott of SC

    + Meanwhile, you might want to consign these corporations, who are denying their workers paid sick leave, to their economic graves…

    McDonald’s – 517K workers
    Walmart – 347K workers
    Kroger – 189K workers
    Subway – 80K workers
    Burger King – 165K workers
    Pizza Hut: – 156K workers
    Target – 51K workers
    Marriott – 139K workers
    Wendy’s – 133K workers

    + Dept. of Forbidden Solution: Declaring a national emergency, Trump diverted billions from the Pentagon to build his useless and destructive border wall. How many ventilators could Trump buy by diverting that $3.8 billion in military aid to Israel?

    That’s enough of that for now. Irony, that’s all we have left.
    __________

    Some good news!

    My book ‘Massacre Sites; Working for the Dead’ is at the publisher and being put together as I write. It’s 115,000 words +/-, over 600,000 characters, with 56 photos. And everybody that read or edited one of the early drafts over the last four years has ordered a copy. Oversized paperback, acid-free paper, ecologically sound, and estimated 350 pages.

    Hell of a time to come out with a book, though, eh? Two weeks or so it’ll be in book form…unless the small indy publisher GrayDogPress in Spokane closes down. Looks like it’ll be close…wanna read a really good True Life book written by me?
    __________

    And I’m going to end this with a short story from the 72 year old Reikki masseuse wife of my retired biologist neighbor:

    Their son works in a high dollar tech company out on the coast. They are still in their offices working, and it’s a run-by-Republican Trump-voter wealthy pricks company. There was a screen on and, as he walked through the area, one of the BMW-driving $3,000 suit guys was standing there listening to Trump say that “he knew it was going to be a pandemic long before anyone else.”

    The Trump-voting neoliberal/neocon went over to a wall and started punching it with his fist. Then he literally started hitting it with his head. He put dents in the sheetrock! Last he took his fists and started pounding on the sides of his head at the same time. At that point Jeff exited the area.

    That is the most severe description of cognitive dissonance I’ve ever heard of.

    best to all of you reading this.

    sealintheSelkirks

    PS: I’m home on my property, nobody, friends or whomever, allowed in the house. Just outside off the porch and I stay on the porch to talk with them. Only two friends, local guys, who value my opinions and readings, have come over in the last two weeks. It’s mostly phone calls and emails at this point. But they understand completely.

    My biologist neighbors are forted up completely, gate to their property locked. I go once a week to town for mail but I do that about dark when there isn’t anybody else in the post office. Gloves, N95 NIOSH respirator, then straight home. This never seemed very funny to me and I’ve been getting ‘you’re stupid’ looks from people for the last 2 1/2 weeks but now there isn’t anybody out and not a mask to be found anywhere. The traffic on the county dirt road that runs by the property has dropped to a few vehicles a day… It is amazingly quiet at night and the night sky has been blazing starfields since there is very little light pollution to hide it. I’m staying busy, always chores to do around here, and there isn’t spit I can do about anything outside of this property. I had a dream that my oldest stepdaughter showed up bedraggled, dusty, worn, walking up from the gate with two kids in backpacks. They are 800 miles south of me in Mt. Shasta. She has 3 kids so why I dreamed only two I don’t know…

    Liked by 2 people

    • Kevin Hester says:

      Seal’, by an order of magnitude you are the major contributor of critical analysis in the comments section of this blog.
      Keep the blog posted on the release of your book. I’ll gladly buy and review a copy.

      You mentioned our colleague and fellow social critique George Carlin. George had his own spin on viruses.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Sheila chambers says:

        Carlin as usual is so RIGHT!, I follow his advice, a little filth is good for you! Like Carlin says, your immune system needs PRACTICE, I haven’t had a cold for a very long time,I dig DIRT, worms, bugs & spiders!
        I think we are too dam clean! People sanitize EVERYTHING, the get all panicky if they just see a poor little SPIDER in their house!
        I INVITE spiders to live in my home, their the GOOD GALS, most spiders you see are FEMALE, the males tend to get EATEN after mating.
        So get out & DIG IN THE DIRT, it’s good for you!

        Liked by 1 person

      • I see that Sheila from down in Southern Oregon replied to the original post waaay up under Kevin’s Carlin link (thanks, Kev, it was dang good as usual. Talk about freaking irony. I sent it to my surf partner over on Windward Side…

        So hello lady! I dig in the dirt around here, too, and there aren’t any sidewalks and no paved roads around or on this property. Closest two-laner blacktop State Hwy is a half mile down in the valley.

        I agree with your comment on we But I don’t allow spiders to silk up the house even if they do catch the occasional fly. I’ve had spider bites. Oh, and Sheila, my non-food item garden is germinating in their trays as I write.

        The following reply to X and wqjcy is one I wrote earlier before my dial-up internet refused to post it and then disconnected me. Probably gonna see a lot of that as the system breaks down…

        ____________

        X: Any humor in a disaster, eh? I certainly don’t look like Batman in my N95 respirator but even if I did I just can’t see myself in those clingy tights. Without chortling and snorting tea through my nostrils that is! Made me smile, guy/gal. I needed that. I’m still watching live George Carlin shows…
        ___________

        wqjcv: REALLY? Holy Crap! Your government is as bad as us suffering under neoliberal Trump’s current crackpot Capitalist idiocy raised up by the awful legacy of nothing but neoliberal dickweeds since the Alzheimer’s President was oozed into office in 1980. A direct line of succession from Reagan of bad to worse regardless of their various party labels and campaign ‘promises.’ Obama was just a milk chocolate version of Reagan whose policies were to the right of Ronnie’s, and Loser DNC Hillary is the Butcher of Libya. Don’t get me going on un-indicted War Criminal Dick Cheney and sockpuppet W ‘god told me to invade Iraq’ Bush! And now Biden the Dementia candidate who can’t tell the difference between his wife or sister. The wealthy who run this country will not tolerate another 1930s FDR which is all Sanders is (better than nothing, though).

        They, the DNC & RNC, obviously would rather have Trump! That is seriously demented concept, isn’t it?

        No offense to you personally, and please consider the same accommodation in regards to me and our illustrious mentally degenerating leader, but…REALLY? The armed violent enforcers of the status quo who work for the wealthy Capitalist owners will stop and question you if you have a mask on?

        Boggles the mind! So don’t wear a mask UNTIL and ONLY if you start feeling sick? That’s…seriously ignorant behavior. I have no other word to describe it. Someone contracts this incredibly virulent SARS II/CoV 19, and for the next 5-7 days up to 14(!!)-though docs are calling people ‘outliers’ that take even longer before they show symptoms or become sick. The policy of your government means they are forcing a Typhoid Mary carrier to be shedding virus’ in every goddamned direction until they finally go down sick. Are there NO infectious disease biologists in Nova Scotia?

        How many people can one person get sick in 14 days before they start coughing with high fever and get bedridden? Any average statistic does anyone know of?

        And from what I’m seeing and hearing from others, very few are actually locked behind the door not going out at all having absolutely zero contact with others of our species. It just isn’t happening, only sort of which is a lot like being a ‘bit’ pregnant I guess… I was in the grocery in mask/gloves/safety glasses five days ago that I wrote about above. And, unlike you, I catch the flu damned near every year and have since childhood. Sometimes lightly if I’m lucky, but the various flu virus’ knock me down for a week on average.

        The US death rate is 3.4% currently, but going up every day. Infected rate doubled in Spokane to the south in the last two days and that’s with very little testing going on. Expected that 70% of the US population will catch it. What’s 3.4% of 70% of 336,000,000 people? Unless the US matches the graph that shows we are following the same rate of rise as Italy.

        Remember, we ARE NOT TESTING worth a shit. A hundred a day across the country? There’s a 12 year old girl in Texas in ICU who came in with pneumonia and some suspicious nurse happened to just have a test kit and used it on her…the girl has gone critical (dying) and her 15 yr old brother is in quarantine in the family house alone because the parents are not allowed back in because they’re in quarantine elsewhere.

        Nova Scotia, all I can tell you is that this isn’t the flu no more than Bubonic Plague was a case of the boils. The ‘novel’ word before the family of coronavirus means it has never existed before, and there isn’t anybody that is immune. Like Smallpox brought to this continent by the Europeans, nobody then had immunity and the entire world doesn’t have any to this now.
        ________

        Today I listened to our community radio station KYRS-Spokane, after the Ralph Nader Hour, that was discussing recently released info. The new studies coming out of university labs have discovered that SARS II/CoV19 stays alive for at least 3 hours on paper and cardboard after contamination. Canned goods are in the days level like all hard surfaces. Plastic is showing results of being able to stay alive and transfer it hours after being infected by somebody also (breath, touching, or ‘shedding’ live virus after having it gotten over it sometimes weeks later).

        https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2020/3/25/1931140/-Watch-a-doctor-demonstrate-how-to-safely-bring-groceries-home-during-the-coronavirus-crisis NOTE: see if you can catch the at-least 6 mistakes he made doing this…

        Leaving canned food out in the sun for a few hours kills the virus, UV rays, or behind glass but not plastic windows, but you have to rotate for every side of the can including bottom and top…and that just kills shelf life, so disinfecting with bleach is probably easier. Until, of course, you run out of bleach or your sprayer jams.

        Read paragraph 6 of my first comment. My oldest friend the biologist has been disinfecting his mail both outside and inside, and the outside of all groceries including fruit and vegetables including the bags before taking off gloves, for the last two weeks+. But he was on that county task force in the mid-80s and absolutely knows how bad this could/will get (but oh I hope not but people are generally stupid and the wealthy owners are even more so I’m afraid).

        I don’t think I posted this anywhere on Kevin’s site:

        https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2020/03/the-story-of-a-coronavirus-infection.html

        And now we are discovering it is even easier to catch this crap. Oh my.

        Nothing more for now I guess. Snow yesterday morning, just a dusting that had covered everything before the cloud mass moved and the sun started blazing down. World smelled good, that freshie snow smell. Today is heavily overcast with very pregnant black & gray storm clouds. The county dirt road is really quiet…

        sealintheSelkirks

        Liked by 2 people

      • wqjcv says:

        The rules in Canada say not to go out at all if you’re having symptoms. Thus wearing a mask may raise suspicion that you’re breaking ‘the rules’. There is a contradiction between the advice we are given with regard to masks, and its effect when you are seen in public.
        I suspect most people are already infected due to asymptomatic carriers and mild symptom carriers. Like the US, Canada was slow to enact a lock-down, so the infected had plenty of time to escape the barn. Unless you are nearing death’s door, getting a test is near impossible. Without mass testing, health authorities are operating in the dark.This is what happens when entire nations are unprepared.
        Sorry, but starving to death at home is not an option!
        p.s. I like spiders. The bigger and bristlier, the better 🙂

        Like

  2. wqjcv says:

    How many months until people go stir crazy, and resume their “normal” lives regardless of risk? I doubt this pandemic will stop them.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Kevin,

    Did you just call me a noisy old surfer dude? HA! Thanks for the compliment and I’ll continue to hopefully have words to say that are appropriate. I do kind of go off on tangents now and then but they usually have a connection in there somewhere to the basic thought being talked over…however subtle they might be. My brain often goes faster than my fingers, and I’m a damned fast typist.

    You most definitely will like my book. It’ll…surprise you I think. It’s not fiction. I have a woman who read on of the later drafts, retired prof, PhD., raised on a Rez up in northern Alaska, Eskimo/Aleut heritage who wants to send a couple copies to her Rez library. She thinks it could help with the absolute rash of suicides among the 9-17 year olds going on there. Her last book she had published was about that. She’s 79 and her husband is a bit older. Both sharp as tacks, extremely anti-corporate, environmental, anti-logging, anti-neoliberal etc etc. Like us I guess, eh Kevin?

    And I’m crossing my fingers that this book gets printed. Supposed to send a copy to Library of Congress for copyright protection, get the ISBN number and a bar code to insert into the rest of the copies, etc etc. But are they even still open I wonder? Publisher said they’ll do that for me. The title is NOT just a title, it’s actually a description of events…

    I watched Carlin’s ‘Carnegie Hall Oct. 1982’ last night, and started on ‘Carlin on Campus 1984’. He still can make me laugh. Belly laugh, but then I really am tuned to irony and he’s got a bushel full. I picked up the George Carlin Commemorative Collection cheap two weeks ago off of eBay. All live performances with bonus stuff I’ve never seen. Man was genius, and ALWAYS pissed off. No wonder him and Pryor had so many heart attacks.
    ____________

    wqjcv:

    No doubt. With a population educated by the neoliberal wealthy to be boneheads with zero critical thinking skills and a horrible lack of any kind of knowledge of history, plus a 5-second attention span before they ‘get bored,’ you are talking about Round 2 coming soon. Then Round 3 sometime after that if it’s anything like 1918/19.

    This SARS II virus has already mutated, from the milder ‘S’ strain to a more virulent ‘L’ strain. The US is mostly the former strain. For now.

    What happens when the mega-fires start raging in the heat of summer and people run like hell and end up in large clumps on walmart parking lots living in tents and campers again after their towns burn down? What’ll I do if that happens to my property? Grab the ‘earthquake bag’ I’ve lived with all my life and run like crazy I guess, like everybody else. There are places up the ridge above me that have been logged so heavily that there’s literally nothing left to burn. Nothing grew back, and what they left-the tiny red fir, white fir, western hemlock, ponderosa and lodgepole pine saplings etc etc all freaking died in the summer heat without the protecting shade of the mature trees to allow them to grow the last few years since the butchering took place.

    Big sigh. The possible scenarios I can think up on about everything going on are, without a doubt, impressively bleak. But then I’m talking to freaking biologists and read the science by scientists, MDs & RNs and infectious disease specialists. And of course climate, ecocide, loss of species, need I go on? Oh darn.
    ________

    It has become evening and I’m back home after a journey into the Outer Limits. Do you remember that tv show, Kevin?

    Hoo-boy. Here’s one goddamned insane afternoon in anecdotal form.

    Went to town today, the 2,200 person ‘biggest’ town in the south end of my county 15 miles north. A friend is moving this weekend and had to get the furniture that he couldn’t keep due to the much smaller space he moved into out of the rental, so he wanted to put it into the 2nd Hand on consignment but it was Sunday and she’s been closed since 5pm Friday.

    Since I needed to get my gear, hats and neck gaitors etc. and the display stand, out of the front window (winter snowboarding hats and she does consignment for me every season), I headed in so I could help Marv out by opening the door. Get two things done at one time. Still have to help your friends… Very empty town.

    Madness #1

    The only place open was the pizza place next door to the 2nd hand doing ‘take out only’ as per State-mandated restaurant closure restrictions. Entire street was bare of cars. But I watched people going in and out picking up pizzas, calazones, beef stroganoff. But they couldn’t sell their craft beers because no eating inside. No masks, nothing on all the age groups inside standing or sitting at the tables waiting for their order…but they weren’t eating it there so it was okay to be next to one another at the tables waiting. Oh my fucking hell.

    I went in through the back alley loading door of the 2nd hand wearing leather work gloves since I was inside the store alone. They are now out in the woodshed for a few days. Leather and fabric doesn’t allow any virus’ to live much past 2-3 days.

    SARS II is contagious through airborne water droplets so I kept my sunglasses on and pulled my N95 NIOSH Respirator over my face when I unlocked the front door so they could load the furniture in.

    Madness #2

    Neither were in masks or gloves and I’ve talked with one of them about it. He is one of the two local guy neighbors who came over and stayed down by his truck to talk. Gave him an N95 ‘dustmask style’ to wear and instructed the use of. I guess I wasted it because he wasn’t. But he believes me! He just isn’t changing his behavior pattern because…you know, that’s hard to do.

    Marv got mad, though. He’s late 60s, a very good medical cannabis grower (GREEN thumb old guy) and Harley rider dude, and he said he’s just sick of people telling him what he can and can’t do. He literally wasn’t happy that I was wearing a mask and said he “just don’t give a shit at this point and it’s all Bill Gates fault.”

    We’ve had long conversations on climate and environment and he listens and asks intelligent questions. I think he’s just on overload at this point.

    Ummm, okay.

    Now read the article at the end of this posting to understand why I almost asked him if I could have his Harley if/when he dies of SARS II in the next month or two.

    I was good, I only thought it. Besides, I’d probably kill myself re-learning to ride a motorcycle again. Maybe I should just stick with my old quad…much safer.

    So they left and I went back to what I was doing, locked up the back door and then took off my gloves and washed outside. Drove a couple blocks to the local Safeway (only supermarket within a 30 mile radius). I skated up to the door, pulled my mask up and went inside for the few things I wanted to pick up since I was in town. No, not freaking toilet paper! A big tub of fudge ripple ice cream was one item…

    Madness #3

    There wasn’t a single customer in that store wearing a mask and not a single employee wearing masks or gloves. The cashiers are all less than three feet apart from every customer in line and taking money. She handed me back my change and the coins rattled into the cup under the machine that everybody gets their coin change from. I caught the looks from people, the ‘what an idiot this guy is’ but at least I had a very cool ’77 Bahne pool rider in my hand that they also looked at, right? I saw people frown at the mask but smile at the skate.

    Go figure.

    Skated back across the parking lot, opened the back door of the 4Runner, pulled off my gloves and washed my hands and forearms then took off the mask. A car going by had people behind the windows staring at me like I was nuts standing there washing my hands with a mask on. Who was it that said (paraphrasing) “Being paranoid doesn’t mean it isn’t warranted?”

    Madness #4

    Stopped at Tribe-owned Spoko for gas, where Marv & DJ got their chicken lunches. Trucker diesel pumps out back, lots of people going in and out, probably 8 cars at the 18 pumps out front and cars parked by the door. One of the Native women employees was doing something on the other side of the pump I was getting gas, then she walked back into the building after smiling at me. I smiled back.

    Not a single person was wearing a mask. I wasn’t, either, but I wasn’t going to walk into the building. After I hung the nozzle back up, I decided I didn’t really want any of their great chicken take-out after all, so I dipped my hands into the soapy window washing bucket, scrubbed while singing the Happy Birthday Song twice in my head before using the blue paper towels in the dispenser.

    I taught pre-k back in the late 80s and learned then what the value was in washing hands multiple times a day! Holy crap, I caught everything from my first class. Pink Eye, Strep Throat, every cold and virus and sniffle. 4.5 yr old Typhoid Marys!! The Happy Birthday Song sung twice is about 25 seconds…

    Now read this article:

    https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2020/3/19/1928808/-The-new-Civiqs-50-state-daily-COVID-19-tracker-shows-just-how-dangerous-Republicans-and-Fox-News-are

    This area in the next few weeks is going to kill thousands if it goes like the experts think it will. About 45,000 total in the county.
    _________

    Note: more gunfire echoing through the hills today. Some from the half million dollar sale day at the big Pawn Shop I’m sure. I won’t be going anywhere anytime soon.

    Enough for now, eh?

    sealintheSelkirks

    COVID19 By the Numbers: The View of a 20 Year Veteran of Pandemic Preparedness (UPDATEDX5)

    https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2020/3/21/1929780/-COVID19-By-the-Numbers-The-View-of-a-20-Year-Veteran-of-Pandemic-Preparedness

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Washington State is finally shutting down completely. Governor announced it yesterday, a two week closure of all jobs. Starts in 48 hours, Wednesday. Stay at home order. Do they really think two weeks is all it will take? The odds are for months reading into the science…

    Emailed my publisher. He replied this morning. He’s not an ‘essential service’ so if he loses people…which is going to happen. But he’s hoping to have my book near completion by mid-April unless he has to take over their jobs to complete production of what they’ve already committed to publishing. Backlog of work, but he wrote that he should have the text layout done this week. It’s the inserting of photos and detail work that takes more time. It may stall completely, and of course he’s a small independent and is worrying about “But the lease companies, banks and whoever else we owe money to do not seem to understand the problem.” Yeah, ya think? Fingers crossed but then I won’t have any income coming in, either, to pay for it. The dominoes fall.

    A complete moratorium of all debt payments should be in place, credit cards, mortgages, everything. Think that will happen? Even two weeks out of work no income is going to just crush a majority of the population.

    My ski hill is STILL open today, I checked the webcams. I mean, really? They have not announced a closure yet. WTF?

    I wonder if wqjcv’s prediction above is overly optimistic about people going stir crazy in months. Two weeks stuck at home watching your non-existent savings dribble away in the never-ending procession of bills to your mailbox? I read that Texas has seen a huge increase of children under 6yrs being brought into emergency wards after being beaten by adults who have been locked up with them for day after day. Bored little children and stressed parents is obviously not a good combination.

    As I posted earlier, St. Clair’s “We’re about to see what happens to a nation whose economy has been kept afloat by the service sector when it shuts down the service sector” is about to get far more real…

    Today’s reading for the folks on this site below.

    sealintheSelkirks

    How COVID-19 Is like Climate Change

    Both are existential challenges—and a president who belittles and neglects science has made them both tougher to address

    https://blogs.scientificamerican.com/observations/how-covid-19-is-like-climate-change/
    __________

    The Pathogenic Profits System: Beyond Begging, Praying, and Capital

    https://www.counterpunch.org/2020/03/23/the-pathogenic-profits-system-beyond-begging-praying-and-capital/
    _________

    Start paying attention to these possible coronavirus symptoms you may not have heard about

    https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2020/3/23/1930350/-Start-paying-attention-to-these-possible-coronavirus-symptoms-you-may-not-have-heard-about

    Liked by 3 people

  5. wqjcv says:

    The advice given by health experts in Canada is to wear a mask only if you’re feeling ill. It will protect others. In my neck of the woods, Nova Scotia, I haven’t seen anyone wearing masks. With the non-essential travel rules, someone wearing a mask may be cause for concern. The police may question you.

    I overheard one older gentleman say to another that he isn’t afraid; he still shakes hands with everyone! Some people are willing to run the risk of catching this flu, and I suppose I’m one of them. As a hermit, I’ve been practicing social distancing my adult life. I only go out for groceries and for walks in the wilderness. I haven’t caught a flu in a decade because of my lifestyle. When I have to go to the supermarket, I accept the risk. If I catch it, I catch it. I can’t honestly say that I’m afraid of coronavirus. I’m in my 50s.

    The declaration of emergency in this province caused the rural transit system to suspend operation. For those of us who relied on it, and have no car, we are now stranded. I’m in good enough shape to use a bicycle, but others are not as fortunate.

    I won’t be getting cabin fever because of the way I am, but I know most people aren’t like me. I estimate two months before there’s a revolt to staying cooped up, or as soon as warm weather returns to our region. With our brutal winters, Canadians are going to enjoy summer, if its the last thing we do.

    If only for psychological reasons, there’s a time limit to crisis management. Life will go on, until there really is no one left standing.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. X says:

    I have many times seen Batman wearing a mask

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Sheila chambers says:

    I WAS to get my @#%^&%$!! CATARACT removed next week but thanks to COVIS-19 it was CANCLED since going blind is “elective”.

    I tried to go shopping yesterday but the battery wouldn’t go, put it on the charger.
    How many “little ol’ ladies” have a battery charger?

    Got out today dressed in my wide brimmed hat because of CATARACT GLARE, P9 mask, latex gloves, alcohol & water spray, a clean wipe down cloth & my “scary” black eye patch.
    Spray everything someone else might have touched, stay away from everyone & hope for the best.
    Freddies wasn’t as busy as usual, many open spaces on the shelfs, I was lucky I already had gloves, mask & alcohol as part of my “disaster” kit as well as dried beans, canned goods, RICE, grits, Ramon, Spam etc.At Fredies I had to bag my own stuff as the checker wouldn’t touch my reusable bags & they have people sanitizing the carts, I sprayed mine before I even touched it!

    Now I can hole up for a few weeks longer until some essential runs out.
    Today I also used my mattock to chop orchard grass, a tough grass that grows in clumps, then I planted some potatoes.
    I wouldn’t mind being in lockdown if I could READ MY BOOKS without a BIG magnifying glass, at least on the ‘puter, I can really jack up the fonts.

    Trump is a MORON! There is a video on Twitter that shows him saying that COVIS-19 virus we under control, not a problem, we are right on it, it’s going away etc etc. It’s on “priorities USA” in Twitter.
    Because we have such a CRAPPY, EXPENSIVE PRIVATE FOR PROFIT INSURANCE SCAM instead of HEALTH CARE FOR ALL, the infection is growing expodentally with overpopulated New York at it’s center.

    Now the “REPUGLICONS” are asking that us old folks go out & shop, help keep the economy going to save the younger folks, NO!

    I would like to tell Trump & his criminal minions to GO TO CHURCH, HUG, KISS, SHAKE HANDS & PRAY to your imaginary “god”. I hope they get COVIS-19!

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Well, that was weird. My post from yesterday ended way up under Sheila’s by the Carlin link. I must have hit the reply button when I meant it to be down here because of my replies to X and wqjvc that were in it!

    Oh darn. Hey Kevin, could you move it down on this end of the comments and slot it before Sheila’s latest comment?
    __________

    So hello again, Sheila! Haven’t seen you here much lately.

    Yeah, I do agree with your 1st comment about the overkill of ‘don’t get dirty’ and constantly scrubbing with chemicals that parents seem to do that lessens their children’s basic immunity development to our planet’s dirty reality. Hot water and soap is good, though. But it is similar to about everything our species does, either way too much or way too little!

    I was married to a woman who, disregarding anything I had to say about it, would give her kids antibiotics every time they got a cold. Start sneezing and whatever was in the bathroom cabinet would go into her kid’s mouths. She just wouldn’t believe me that there was a drastic difference between a virus and bacteria which, of course, is what antibiotics was designed for. But then I was just a stepdad and what did I know…SHE was a mother and that conferred exalted special status somehow. Really, that was the attitude. Men get so much shit for having the exact same attitude I’ve noticed…

    I didn’t have much dirt as a kid having grown up on a beach, lots of sand of course! But I was on, in, and under the ocean dang near every day for the first half my life. Closest substance in chemical composition to sea water is blood, but it didn’t confer immunity to influenza virus’ because I catch the flu or a cold just about every damn winter. What I wasn’t was breast-fed which does confer the mother’s immune system into the baby. Born during the corporate ‘baby formula era’ when it was all about making money and screw science. Oh wait, it hasn’t changed a bit since I was born, only gotten worse. Oh darn!

    Really sorry to hear about the cataract surgery cancellation by the way. I’ve got a friend who was due for her ripped meniscus left knee that also has been cancelled. She can’t hardly walk at this point.

    About the groceries, read the link in my reply that ended up under yours up above. Or maybe you already did.
    _________

    As for the neoliberal wealthy who disregard science and intelligent critical thinking, I thought this would be an appropriate place to put this cartoon:

    https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2020/3/24/1930832/-Cartoon-Winning

    Don’t snort your tea through your nose like I did when I saw it. That kind of stings!
    __________

    And this one you are thinking of from the new Texas Lt. Gov in reply to your old people should die comment:

    Watch Texas Lt. Gov. tell Tucker that patriotic grandparents should be willing to die for capitalism

    https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2020/3/23/1930570/-Watch-Texas-Lt-Gov-tell-Tucker-that-patriotic-grandparents-should-be-willing-to-die-for-capitalism
    _______

    You’ll probably like this one, too:

    The Conquerors of America

    https://www.counterpunch.org/2020/03/24/the-conquerors-of-america/
    _______

    As for our prison lock-down, this is one to think on:

    A ‘third wave?’ Hong Kong thought it had a handle on the coronavirus pandemic — it doesn’t

    https://www.marketwatch.com/story/third-wave-hong-kong-thought-it-had-a-handle-on-coronavirus-it-doesnt-2020-03-23
    ________

    And Trump put out a ‘cease and desist’ order on this. He REALLY doesn’t like people repeating what he said when he’s telling them he didn’t say that:

    https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2020/3/25/1931337/-Trump-sends-cease-desist-letter-on-ad-featuring-one-giant-sound-bite-of-his-mad-coronavirus-musings
    ________

    As for staying home weeks, yeah, well, I’m also able to do that. I had two grannies that talk a lot about trying to feed their young families in 1930. My dad was 9, mom was 5. But it was two different views since one was an Iowa farm wife and the other was a piano player in a Speakeasy married to a Buddhist Priest in Berkeley Calif. But they both had a big imprint on my subconscious with the life stories they told about then, the bankers and cops and a barter economy. And, after being homeless and mostly broke for several years in the mid-1970s, I tend to think ahead if at all possible. It’s why, after Cheney/bush was put into office by the unSupreme Court I moved and bought this place because I knew, just freaking knew from everything I was reading, that they were going to crash the economy because rightwing corporate Repub President Clinton killed banking regulations so they could.

    I have no mortgage, and live in the 2nd poorest county in the state paying the much lower property tax rate. That’s a biggie when it comes to a roof over your head.

    And my house is off limits, nobody comes in. People can visit but they have to pee in the bushes. Nobody in means nobody in. I’ve talked with friends from my porch steps. Getting a lot of emails from people, though.

    But when you looked at the cartoon, realize it represents the majority of my fellow Stevens County citizens. They are STILL not wearing masks and going to work and walking into the store and gas stations as if it was…the end of March. There aren’t any masks left anywhere and they were late to the party, but I’ve been getting dirty looks for the lasts 3-4 weeks in mine.

    going out as absolutely as little contact with others as possible is a much better idea. I
    _______

    Latest as I’m listening to the David Packmen Show on KYRS Community Radio as I write this:

    Trump’s stimulus $1,200 checks are ONLY going to people who paid IRS fed taxes in 2018 or this year and GOT A REFUND USING DIRECT DEPOSIT. The account must be still active or no check. Only about half of those eligible did this, and they are facing 3 weeks before they get it.

    The other half who are also ELIGIBLE for this ‘Stimulus’ check are going to be waiting up to two months. Oops.

    The other half of the 336 million population is NOT ELIGIBLE. I’m not having been below poverty level income not required to file IRS for the last few years. I’m sorta like the very rich I guess since they don’t pay squat, either. We don’t feel equal…

    >There are state governors now talking about 2 or 3 months. Cali, NY State, others. Capitalism is GOING TO FUCKING DIE in this country. There is no possible way when business owners start walking away from their $5,000 a month rent for their restaurant space. The banks are going to crash when the mortgages end and the landlords income cancels. No income tax being paid and the cascading dominoes just go crashing one after another.

    MONTHS, folks. Think freaking months with this shutdown getting tighter and more militarized. The tanks will be in the streets of the cities trying to keep starving people, who probably have been evicted for non-payment of rent, off the streets or in the parks camping since they are homeless but the parks have all been closed, too. In Hawai’i they are not moving homeless camps off the beaches. There isn’t anywhere else for those families to go.

    In talking with my biologist friends, they both are nodding their heads about the timeline. Mike (Kevin, he was a comment contributor years ago to NBL) said wait until we see what August looks like. While my partner over on Windward Side is saying it should be longer but he was in that task force so he’s got an even bleaker outlook. Both are saying think 18 months, like 1918-1920 Worldwide Spanish Flu Pandemic (which, interestingly enough, wasn’t from Spain).

    The trajectory of SARS/CoV II cases since the first 100 cases are the worst in the world. 68,000 cases officially or it would be 4 to 20 TIMES larger. And remember, we are NOT testing like S. Korea etc etc. but we are a much larger population. And our states are bigger than many countries across the world. We have passed China’s increase…and to the speed of increase in ten days there will be an insane number of cases overwhelming hospitals. 30 US states are NOT DOING ANYTHING to stop transmission rates. Think 100,000 new cases in the next month. Or more. The US will be #1, baby! Wear your MAGA hat!

    _________It ain’t just the grandparents, obviously:

    Twelve-year-old girl is ‘fighting for her life’ after testing positive for coronavirus, family says

    https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2020/3/24/1930483/-Twelve-year-old-girl-is-fighting-for-her-life-after-testing-positive-for-coronavirus-family-says
    _________

    Spokane, where my book is currently at the publisher’s, just doubled in cases in the last two days. It may not get published and will only be real on the printer copy I made and the one in the computer and on a couple of thumbdrives.
    _________

    OKAY, I know I scribble with a keyboard too fast. Can’t help it! So I leave you all with this analogy:

    ‘Think of Trump being just like the Mayor of Amity Island. Then remember when Chief Brody, out in the boat looking at reality, said “We’re gonna need a bigger boat” as 40 feet of gray reality full of sharp teeth swam by? Yeah, well, here we are…and May is looking like the possible peak of infection rates at Day 100 or so (depending on the vector rate from the multiple 1st cases).

    And the bleeping asswipe Mayor was STILL the Mayor in Jaws II. Think about THAT for a minute or two, then go smoke a big fat bowl of incredibly potent cannabis before your brain explodes…or sit in meditation. Both can achieve similar effects I think…

    sealintheSelkirks

    Liked by 3 people

  9. TYPO! NOTE: That 100,000 cases is what the City of Spokane’s emergency & medical teams are expecting. The city has a population of roughly 250,000. By May half the city will be down or getting over it, or dead.

    I am glad I have no reason to go to the city anytime soon. My book publication work is online since I met the publisher three weeks ago to over it. I was in a mask even then. He raised my eyebrow over that… Now it’s doubling every 2 days. Oh crap.

    sealintheSelkirks

    Liked by 3 people

  10. Kevin Hester says:

    Gail broadly agrees with me.

    Like

  11. I am leaving the property and going to town tomorrow. I need to go get mail and pay bills. Capitalism fucks you if you don’t pay on time. Tomorrow is 11 days since I’ve been out. The post office will send my mail back if I don’t go get it within ten days…supposed to be just a few days before they do that but being rural they let ya go longer here because they know most everybody with boxes…

    So I thought I’d leave this one for your reading pleasure. It ain’t gonna happen but who was it that said “I Have a Dream”….

    sealintheSelkirks

    Former WHO Director: 8-Week Suppression Strategy Could Stop US COVID Crisis in Its Tracks
    https://www.counterpunch.org/2020/04/01/former-who-director-8-week-suppression-strategy-could-stop-us-covid-crisis-in-its-tracks/
    “We know we can get this under control,” says Dr Anthony Costello, a former Director at the World Health Organization (WHO) where he headed up maternal, child and adolescent health. “The problem is that Europe has been too slow to act compared with Asia; and America is now facing a huge crisis.”

    Costello, who is Professor of Global Health at University College London where he previously headed up the UCL Institute for Global Health, spoke to me via telephone from Yorkshire, England, where he is currently isolating from his family members, many of whom are experiencing symptoms of the novel coronavirus.

    Costello, who joined the WHO from 2015 to 2018 before returning to UCL, pulls no punches about the failures that, he says, have allowed the new coronavirus to rampage across Western countries.

    “America is now the epicentre of the pandemic”, he warns, arguing that the United States may experience the highest rate of fatalities anywhere in the world. London, too, he tells me, “will face a health service disaster within two to three weeks, because it’s been allowed to let rip there. I really fear for our people and my health colleagues.”

    The reason the US and UK are on track for disaster is due to the failure to take early action, explains Costello. This allowed the virus to spread undetected among communities for as long as two months, setting us up for levels of exponential growth which are now bound to overwhelm healthcare facilities.

    But he insists that it’s not yet too late to regain control of the situation. And the data suggests we could do it in as little as seven to eight weeks.

    “We know that the virus has been circulating in the US at least since mid-January, when a guy flew into Seattle from Wuhan. He seems to have seeded the virus, and since then we have had exponential community transmission,” Costello says.

    The Trump administration, however, rapidly changed course on its previous inaction after White House officials read a paper released on March 16th by Imperial College London’s COVID-19 Response team.

    That paper, produced by the same scientists advising the Boris Johnson government in the UK, used a mathematical model to estimate the consequences of the US and British government’s prior strategies of minimalist mitigation.

    The findings were frightening, forecasting that as many as 1.1 million Americans and 260,000 Britons would die even if more ambitious measures were pursued to slow the epidemic. The only way to avoid this outcome, the Imperial College team recommended, is a comprehensive epidemic suppression strategy enforcing social distancing for 18 months – until a vaccine becomes available.

    Since then, the US Centers for Disease Control have adopted the 18-month suppression strategy as part of their official response plan. Meanwhile, Trump has already expressed his reluctance to pursue such a protracted lockdown due to its impact on the global economy.

    Seemingly vindicating his approach was a separate model produced by Oxford University which made national headlines, claiming that as much as 50 percent of the British population may have already be infected and built up “herd immunity” to the virus – implying that social restrictions could be lifted far more quickly.

    The study was also amplified by conservative commentators in the US, who suggested that it means the US lockdown policy should be ended.

    But according to Costello, “both these mathematical models cannot be right. I suspect that the truth might in fact be somewhere in the middle.”

    While the Imperial College’s modelling of the potential high fatality rate of a ‘do nothing’ approach has been widely accepted by the scientific community, its 18-month solution strategy has been questioned – as has the Oxford model’s opposite approach assuming a build-up of immunity.

    A study by the New England Complex Systems Institute at New York University found that the Imperial College scientists had ignored data from East Asia demonstrating the efficacy of mass testing and contact tracing in suppressing the outbreak and minimising fatalities within around 5 weeks. Epidemiologists and public health experts had also pointed out that the Oxford paper’s optimistic modelling was already contradicted by fatality data from Italy. And neither model has supported the best tried-and-tested responses to dealing with an epidemic.

    As a result, says Costello, “The United States is now the epicentre of the pandemic. Currently, Britain is a bit ahead of the US, and two and half weeks behind Italy, which is only a few days ahead of Spain, France and Germany.

    “But the problem is that government has placed the modellers in the forefront of decision-making. SAGE [the UK government’s Scientific Advisory Group on Emergencies] strikes me as having downplayed the public health view. Which is that you’ve got to act fast, find the virus, test test test, trace the contacts of those who are infected, isolate and quarantine, and implement strong social distancing. You do all that and what we’ve seen in East Asia is that you can really contain this, suppress this within 7 weeks.”

    This won’t make the virus simply disappear but it buys valuable time and drives down the death rate. According to Costello, while there is nothing wrong with bringing in theoretical experts to do mathematical national modelling, the real problem is that the British government’s scientific experts lack significant experience in staving off real-world epidemics:

    “They are all good academics. I have a great deal of respect for them. But none of them have successfully managed a public health crisis like this. The Imperial College paper for instance didn’t model the impact of mass testing, and talked only about case isolation. Yet these are precisely the tactics that we know work so well. Mass testing for the virus is already working in places like South Korea, where they’ve managed to find a way to keep this at bay without draconian lockdowns.”

    Costello is sceptical of the official claim that the reason we didn’t rapidly bring in mass testing is the lack of capacity.

    He cites virologist Professor Julian Peto of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine who, Costello tells me, has “rightly rubbished the idea that we don’t have the capacity for testing. Just one real-time PCR machine can be used to undertake as many as 10,000 tests over two weeks. All we would have needed to do was ramp this up, mobilising local research labs around the country to reach hundreds of thousands, if not millions. We haven’t done this, and the question is, why?

    “We knew at the end of January that a crisis was developing in Wuhan, and any crisis management team would ask, is there a chance it could come to London, or Washington. And the answer at that time from public health experts was simple: yes. We should have started preparing for the worse case scenario. We didn’t.”

    There is still time to get ahead of the crisis, Costello says. “We have London surging. Many parts of the US are similarly surging. In the UK we also have the West Midlands and some other areas. But there are other places where we don’t really know what’s going on, because we just aren’t doing much community testing. Testing of health-workers is essential, but without community testing we can’t see what’s going on, we can’t tell how the epidemic is spreading. It’s being able to tell that which allows us to move in rapidly to isolate cases, and this is the key to being able to slowly return to some degree of normalcy.”

    After announcing the end of the community testing earlier in March, the government U-turned and declared it would ramp up community testing, with Boris Johnson promising 25,000 tests a day. But it still hasn’t happened. “Community virus testing hasn’t properly kicked-off. We are still doing a maximum of around 5,000 tests a day. This is way too low.”

    Costello is also concerned about tepid government messaging. “It’s not enough to just have modellers, virologists, and behavioural scientists. You need people who can translate this into action. Social scientists. Public health experts experienced in community mobilisation. Right now we are locked into this strange idea that the Prime Minister or President makes a speech and suddenly the entire country changes its mind. That’s just a fantasy. Throughout my career I’ve seen that just giving people a few of the right messages won’t necessarily change behaviour. We need a more serious decentralised approach and to share data with local communities.”

    He refers to some of China’s mass communications measures. “The Chinese managed to suppress the virus in provinces outside Wuhan without the same sort of total lockdown by operating quickly. They had a TV station giving out information on the virus round-the-clock on a 24-hour basis. We had policing of supermarkets and pharmacies. But most importantly we had a comprehensive mass testing and contact tracing programme. And proper protection for frontline health-workers. And that’s how this was brought under control within 7 weeks.”

    In contrast, Costello warns that the situation facing frontline health-workers in the US and UK is nothing short of disastrous. “We simply don’t have enough PPE [Personal Protective Equipment]. Not enough visors, not enough N95 respirators. Government is not following WHO guidelines.”

    I saw this first-hand when I had to call the emergency services to come and see to my 75-year old father. He has dementia, diabetes, heart disease and has had multiple strokes. Earlier this week, he tested positive for COVID19. He is currently in a stable condition in a London hospital. When the paramedics arrived, they wore little more than surgical masks – known to be largely useless in repelling coronaviruses – and thin bibs made out of what looked like the same material as plastic bags. It’s quite possible, if not likely, that they were infected as a result of handling my father – and that they may, in turn, be infecting others whom they deal with during the course of their jobs. But while I’ve been advised to self-isolate after my own contact with my father, no one has told these frontline workers to do the same, and they haven’t been tested – the government only announced a ramp up of testing for healthcare staff at the end of March.

    Costello welcomes the measure, but is clear that it is far from sufficient. While the US government has continued to dither on testing, the UK government has announced plans to make test-kits available to millions. “I’m worried about the immune response tests they are bringing in. These tests might only become positive a week or two after infection. So they are not a good diagnostic test for active infection. If a health worker tests negative and, reassured, goes back to work they might be actively infectious.”

    Further, there is no central coordination for the testing. Costello thinks immune tests will give useful population information but may not give data to authorities which they can use to systematically trace contacts, isolate cases, and contain outbreaks.

    He points out that in East Asia – Singapore, Taiwan, Hong Kong and beyond – while there have been new outbreaks, their coordinated mass test-trace suppression strategies have proven that a huge resurgence of COVID19 is not necessarily inevitable. The approach means that when outbreaks do reoccur, they can be more effectively contained.

    But what about the resurgence of cases, I wonder, occurring in Hong Kong, South Korea and other places? Hong Kong, for instance has had to resort to stronger lockdowns to suppress a sudden upsurge in new cases as restrictions were relaxed.

    Costello points out that their success in minimalising fatalities, and their capacity to move fast to identify and isolate outbreaks, puts them in a better position to respond.

    “We are playing for time”, says Costello. And it’s in that that we can learn more about the virus. “We don’t know yet how many asymptomatic people are being infected and building immunity. With these people identified they can get back to work. We don’t how much herd immunity has been created. The more we learn, the more we can get our economy going a bit more with careful monitoring for outbreaks. And we don’t know when a vaccine will arrive.”

    What does the next 18 months look like then? In Costello’s view, with the right strategy, it doesn’t need to be a permanent, full-scale lockdown – but this can only be achieved with a nimble, adaptive approach based on the interplay between mass testing, tracing and isolation, and the data that can be developed from doing so.

    “The strategy is to firstly get suppression as in China, South Korea, Hong Kong and so on, which takes about two months. And to save lives and not overwhelm the health services in this first phase. Secondly, this buys time to explore other medium strategies for loosening the lockdown, depending upon the data on immunity and ways to get the economy moving. Thirdly, you get a safe vaccine.”

    I ask Costello about the ‘herd immunity’ controversy. Is it possible that we might develop sufficient levels of immunity in the population that prevents the disease from being a problem? Is that how we will eventually beat this? Or are we doomed to have this virus surge back every time we relax restrictions?

    In the long run, he told me, it might be possible that populations do eventually build up immunity to the virus.

    “The general idea that we might eventually build up herd immunity has a certain plausibility in the sense that lots of viruses spread around and a lot of people get sub-clinical infections, and immunity can build up that way. It’s a phenomenon that’s well known. We know well that when most of the population are infected and asymptomatic, this can happen. My view is that the truth of what’s in store may lie somewhere in between the Oxford and Imperial models. The bottom line is that we don’t know the quality of that immunity that we get after recovering from this coronavirus, and how long it will last. Virologists say that generally we don’t get long-lasting immunity from coronaviruses. We might also get new strains due to mutations. So even if lots of people have been exposed, we don’t know the quality of the immunity, there may still be a second surge. There are all sorts of unknowns.”

    Costello comes back to the importance of coordinated testing. “We need to go out and do mass testing for the virus in communities. This tells us who has it, and where. That information can be given back to communities so authorities and citizens know what’s happening in their area. Whether it’s a nasal swab or an antibody test, we need to do this so that we can base our strategies on actual data. We can only go so far with theoretical models.”

    Herd immunity or not, Costello is clear that it is a huge mistake to simply let the virus run. The biggest danger is that if the virus is allowed to simply spread without controls – as it had been for nearly two months – the overwhelming impact on healthcare facilities due to the sheer number of cases requiring hospitalisation could drive fatality rates much higher than anticipated, as is happening in Italy. The model’s warning of the risk of millions of deaths in such a scenario are, Costello says, very possible.

    “If I was advising the government, I would give people a more feasible lockdown period as long as we are very strict. That, as in Asia, we can get this under control in about two months. Even Wuhan is starting to open up. My fear is that we will now have a longer lead-time to achieve this, because we have already let it run. But if we focus on an 8-week challenge, with mass testing to inform a systematic approach to tracing and isolating, we may not need an 18-month lockdown.”

    First published by The Independent

    More articles by:Nafeez Ahmed

    Liked by 3 people

  12. wqjcv says:

    Seal is correct ~ Canadian officials are wrong. Wear a mask.
    https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/covid-19-silent-spreaders-1.5520006

    Liked by 2 people

    • wqjcv: That article and the links in it were not unexpected but were damn bad news, eh? I just loved the picture of Springtime frolic in that BC park. Can you see the death’s heads skulls grinning beneath those happy faces?

      But there are enough goddam idiot people in my country, too. I kid you not. I really want to rant at them but what’s the point? They won’t get it just like the people in that photo. Darwin Awards comes to mind.

      My anecdotal story for yesterday:

      So…I drove the 15 miles to Chewelah yesterday. Not many people on the road but there were still logging trucks carrying dead trees from cutting down the forests. Guess LOGGING is a ‘necessary needed business’ in this Pandemic that the State government wants to keep open, eh? WHAT CLIMATE COLLAPSE? Oh, never mind because we have ‘coronavirus’ to worry about says our supposedly Democrat ‘green’ environmental Governor that this side of the state just hates… I’m getting more cynical by the moment. He just announced that the State will stay closed until May 4th when they will do another evaluation. Like Hong Kong, too early and the number spike two weeks later I’m thinking.

      I parked behind the 2nd hand that I fix furniture etc at once a week for a friend who owns it who is also a goddam idiot that refuses to wear a mask because and I paraphrase: ‘If I get it I get it” christian fate crap. Oh my hell, but she started wiping surfaces in the store a week before she closed. Wore gloves two Sundays ago shopping in Spokane she said…but won’t wear a mask. The 2nd Hand stores do not get special operating permits, unlike Logging Companies I guess. Closed for two weeks and she is quite likely going to lose the store after 15 years by May 4th. People are freaking, they WANT to believe Trump.

      The alternative is literally too horrible to contemplate. They just can’t do it. This is a scary realization.

      Pulled out the ’70s pool rider and skated down the alley around the corner to Main Street and the post office entrance. A woman was just walking in the door, pulled the metal handle with her bare left hand but used her left elbow on the inside metal push bar to open it wider. Mistake # 1 and 2. Her hand could be contaminated as well as the sleeve of her sweatshirt. How many people had come in since the last time anyone in there sterilized the door handles? If anyone is sterilizing the door handles or frames?

      No mask, no gloves, no glasses. Mistake #3, 4, 5. She ignored me, I could feel her deliberately NOT looking at my mask, gloves, and glasses though I had just ridden around the corner on a skate. Does that make sense? Everybody always looks at the long-haired old surfer guy on a skateboard in that town, always have.

      There was an older guy in the back getting something out of the ‘package delivery’ boxes on the back wall. No mask, no gloves, no glasses.

      She was getting mail out of a box above mine barehanded, mistake #6 so I stood back away from her, she turned and left and I watched her push the bar to open the door with her bare right hand this time, mail in the bare left hand. Mistake #7 and 8.

      I got my mail, dumped it into a plastic bag I had ready as the other guy walked past behind me to open the door with his bare right hand just about exactly where the woman had. Common behavior and Mistake #4 for him since, of course, no mask/gloves/ glasses were #1,2, and 3.

      I went out the door, saw a few people walking on the street though just about everything is closed except the ACE hardware store a block away. Passing one another on a sidewalk not more than three feet wide. Not a single one in mask, gloves, or safety glasses. Skated back around the block and down the alley to my old 4Runner, dropped the tailgate, and ripped open all the envelopes before taking off my gloves to write the checks for the bills. Then washed my hands with soap and cold water while singing the Happy Birthday song twice in my head, then took off my mask. One of the young guys from the pizza place next door came out the restaurant/brewery pub’s public back door to smoke a cig. He had no mask, no gloves, no glasses which are Mistake #1, 2, and 3. He had to have turned the doorknob with his bare hand Mistake #4. Smoking a cig…well, you do touch your face at times because I used to be addicted to those damned things. Count it as Mistake #5. We chatted for a few while I was puling the trash out of the back into the big shop can I had rolled over. He went back inside when a customer walk in the front. Probably without a mask or gloves on, too, for that matter. Mistake #6.

      This young guy, an okay dude doesn’t seem like a doofus WTF type, has seen me in a mask for over a month but hadn’t seen me in two weeks. We’ve had serious discussions about SARS II CoV-19 before. And him and other employees are still making pizzas and whatever else because people were still ordering take-out. He’s really worried about the economy because he’s like most everybody, living from every two-week paycheck to paycheck. The ‘shut-down’ is NOT really a shut-down, is it?

      Take-out, of course, meaning people come INSIDE AND SiT DOWN AT THE TABLES while waiting for their orders. They don’t walk out to the curb. No customers in masks or gloves. Pizza is SO worth it, though, isn’t it? Yum-yum. Too many mistakes to count here, folks. I’m…overwhelmed with the utter ignorance. Indifference. Or maybe it’s just plain denial like climate collapse?

      Slipped the gloves back on without handling them (set them down so I could do that) and opened the back door of the store and went in to grab a few things I wanted to take home. Closed the door, let the gloves slide off into the plastic bag with what I grabbed without touching the outside of them, and headed for the bank to deposit the two tiny checks I had in the mail.

      The woman behind the glass had gloves on. She knows me and had given me those ‘funny’ looks in my mask & gloves weeks ago, the last time the bank doors were open. I was the only one in the drive-up so she started asking me questions. Questions to words I had already said in that bank (remember, Chewelah is only 2,200 people so all faces are at least familiar and I’m the ONLY 65 yr old surfer on a skateboard!). She’s was acting very…nervous, and what I came away with was that she had finally gotten scared enough to want to know what I had read recently. I sat there in the 4Runner and told her the latest science. When I drove away she had that rabbit-looking-at-a-coyote look on her face. I think the term is ‘blanched’ face if I’m using the word correctly?

      I drove the hell home, left the mask and glasses on the dash facing south in the sun, sprayed the items I had snagged from the store on the porch as I took them out of the bag, gloves went on the railing in the wind and sun, stripped down including hat and skate shoes and left those outside on the railing also, and washed with soap and water I put out before I left singing the Happy Birthday song. I won’t be using them for another two weeks. I’m done with the outside world for that long, anyway.

      Then I went inside and smoked a big fat bowl of my potent Mantanushka Thunderfuck purple Alaskan strain from my garden and checked the seeds I’m trying to germinate. Not a single person I saw walking anywhere yesterday were wearing protective gear. Not one. Oh my fucking hell.
      _________

      Articles:

      Link to map showing where quarantine is somewhat working, and where not. Notice the political control correlation:

      https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2020/4/2/1933608/-COVID-19-threatens-to-rip-apart-Southern-states-in-a-way-that-isn-t-happening-anywhere-else

      ________

      The US infection rate is MILLIONS higher judging by this posting:

      I Love Rock ‘n’ Roll’ songwriter dies of COVID-19. His widow’s story is heartbreaking

      https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2020/4/2/1933674/–I-Love-Rock-and-Roll-songwriter-dies-of-COVID-19-His-widow-s-story-is-heartbreaking

      NOTE: My 49 yr old Kenpo student neighbor who runs the front office of a local alternative high school, went down sick weeks ago. Her lessons have been on hold of course except for questions over the phone, but she is still coughing when we talk. She went to the doc in early March and they REFUSED to test her because she had other symptoms that were not SARS II CoV-19. I’m freaking sure she had it and still does as the last couple of phone calls after talking a while she went into dry coughing fits. It’s not like you can catch ONLY one virus at a time and even I know that fact, but imagine just how many people in the US are going to die in the next 6 weeks. I’m not holding my breath on anything going well. Well, actually, maybe I am holding my breath in a way…

      400,000 US soldiers died in WWII. That’s all, just 400,000 which, compared to Russia’s 25,000,000 that were the ones who really beat the shit out of Nazi Germany. That is a pitiful number because I’m wondering when I’ll start seeing bodies wrapped in blankets on the sides of the road waiting for pick-up around here. In the next 30 days? Next 3 months? For 18 months like 1918-20?

      FEMA just ordered 100,000 body bags and four dozen new refrigerated trucks, the 52 foot long kind that transports frozen meat. Portable morgues. I seriously am thinking they are waaay undercounting what might be coming.
      __________

      KEVIN:

      Ending on a better note, my book Massacre Sites; Working for the Dead is having text and pictures put together in lay-out as we speak. I’ve already approved the first two chapters before the publisher would continue with it. Sent it to one of my early editor friends Utah Karin who is reading the almost-last copy I sent her a few weeks ago, and she is just going nuts over it.

      I’ve had to make changes in pictures, some going grayscale because of the added cost of color which would make the book cost twice as much being as there are so many photos in the book. Out of the total, 54 (I’ve removed two), three were already B&W. I’ve now shifted 10 (or more) to grayscale B&W. So maybe a third will be B&W, the rest color. The book will end up about 260 pages is the guesstimate.

      I’ve got roughly 40 copies on order already, just from local folks who know me and friends & family elsewhere. I’m kind of nervous about it. This is different from stories I’ve had published online in different magazines, or even the novella The Lunch Counter Trilogy. I don’t get stage fright but I admit this has me a bit unsettled.

      WEATHER:

      I’ve had snow, rain, gropple, good-sized hail, and sunshine each day over the last few days. Just a bit too cold to be comfortable outside in a t-shirt. The wind has been very chill. Was about 6’C at 1:30pm in the shade, but on the way back from town two hours later it was 8C on the casino sign on the highway. Today I’m sitting in reflected sunshine beaming through the south office window, very warm air coming from the sun-heat. Twenty minutes ago it was blowing groppel against the same window. This morning I was catching sizable snowflakes in my hand. Walking across the property with the old blind Husky who wants me with her though she pays no attention to me if I am as long as I’m within range. It smells really good outside.
      ____________

      I had a funny thought a minute ago. Literally just popped into my head. I wonder who, if anyone, might have thought about me being in the mask weeks ago walking in their shop door or people outside seeing me wash my hands beside the truck in a parking lot (I carry soap & water & towel).

      I talk a lot with people because yeah I am a noisy old surfer as the stepkids called me 30 years ago, But I’m also always carrying one or another of my old skates that I’m riding around the city or town (no concrete or asphalt where I live remember!), and those tend to break the social ice and people start talking. I talked a LOT to people about the science I was reading and what my two biologist friends were saying. Did anybody listen or was I just literally wasting my time? Infection rates are climbing rapidly but they are NOT doing shit about testing. You can’t GET tested and that’s probably everywhere. Except wealthy people, and politicians obviously. There are so few being counted or test kits themselves that, like the songwriter…we’re so fucked over exactly like the ongoing massive climate destabilization that nobody is paying much attention to at the moment.

      Even my publisher a month or more ago gave me a shrug-your-shoulder-takes-all-kinds funny look as none of the people working in the publishing shop were in masks. He wasn’t much different other than worrying about the financial side of it in the only physical meeting we’ve had. I wonder what he’s thinking now but people are so stressed I doubt I bring it up.

      Since I started wearing N95 masks every time I left this property going somewhere, about half the people in view gave disparaging looks and some were even showing anger. This is not including the ones that were more conscious and gave the blank stare instead which is definitely a form of disapproval in itself. But there has been people that did want to talk about the mask and reasons for it.

      Not enough, though, definitely not nearly enough wanted to know. My best friend calls me the Cassandra of surfing. Big sigh.
      ________

      Regards to all! Do something fun every single damn day. Even just a small thing.

      sealintheSelkirks

      Liked by 2 people

      • Kevin Hester says:

        Great round up mate. We’re living in a dystopia in the end times. I notice lots of the people who have considered me an alarmist over the last 7 years are contacting me more ! #Surprise.
        Make sure when the book is published you leave a link here for us to order it before the collapse pays out.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Sheila chambers says:

      I’m a freak!
      I wear a N-95 mask, latex gloves, I carry a spray bottle with alcohol inside & a clean washcloth as a wipe. I wipe down door handles, door nobs,belts near cash registers, grocery carts, keypads, tables, desks, trays or anything I need to touch that others have already touched. I use the washcloth to open doors after they have been sprayed.
      I’m alone doing this, only the employees wear gloves but no masks, we can’t get them here. The only reason I do have a N-95 mask & latex gloves is because I had bought them years ago for another purpose.

      I make quite a sight when I do go out, gloves, mask, black eye patch. alcohol spray bottle, cloth wipe & a broad brimmed hat!
      Everyone else in the shops get too close, don’t have either a mask or gloves, can’t get them here because their made in CHINA & it takes WEEKS to ship them here in those BIG, DIRTY CONTAINER SHIPS!

      Now Trump is demanding that automakers switch to making VENTILATORS! How long will it take them to retool & retrain their workers to produce them? months, years, ????
      Trump will soon be demanding that ‘merica get back to work & make $$$$$$!!!
      That’s all that matters to those OLIGARCHS, MONEY!
      MAGA!
      We are expendable, all those dead bodies will PROFIT funeral homes, cemitaries, undertakers, embalmers, grave diggers, priests & casket makers.

      Another fake, rigged corrupt “election” is on it’s way, once again the candidate that most people here want is being cheated, his votes stolen & given to his senile, demented, oligarch warmonger, opponent.

      I’m not even going to waste my time on a “protest” vote this time, I’m calling for a BOYCOT THE FAKE, RIGGED 2020 FRAUDULANT “ELECTION” & have been since the rigged, fraudulent 2016 fake “election”!
      Enough is ENOUGH!

      Liked by 2 people

      • Shiela, there ain’t no bracing for impact of this. I mean, none, lady! When the train hits you, your body parts go flying in all directions. And I assume it’s real freaking painful.

        And then there are the people like this who keep JUMPING OUT IN FRONT OF THE GODDAMNED TRAIN like this Darwin Award winner:

        Karen Kolb Sehlke on March 14th posted COVID-19 hoax, anti-socialism rant on FB supporting Trump.

        April 2nd: *died of COVID-19, family asking for GoFundMe donations*

        MY THOUGHT: Doesn’t even have the decency to leave enough money to have her dumbfuckingass cremated. I have no sympathy whatsoever for this woman. I am TIRED OF STUPID. I really hope she didn’t have time to breed but since I’ve never had FaceBlech I wouldn’t know…

        Here’s another bit of reality:

        Domestic violence incidents spike across the country as COVID-19 pandemic spreads

        https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2020/4/4/1934238/-Domestic-violence-incidents-are-spiking-across-the-country-as-the-COVID-19-pandemic-spreads

        A combination of “shelter in place” orders, the unprecedented social and economic stressors of massive job losses, and an increase in gun sales are contributing to a spike in domestic violence reports all around the country, and victims find themselves literally unable to escape the reach of their abusers.

        Local authorities are reporting a sharp increase in domestic violence calls—in both major cities and rural areas—since states began to discourage travel outside the home in accordance with public health directives. New York City, Seattle, and Los Angeles have all seen a surge in such reports, along with several other metropolitan areas. For example, two days after California’s “Safer at Home” order went into effect, Los Angeles police reported 244 domestic abuse calls in a single day, representing a 240% increase over the previous month’s daily average of such calls.

        The poison of abuse is spreading across the country, as reported by CNN.

        Portland, Oregon had a 27% increase in domestic violence arrests between March 12 and 23, 2020, as compared with the same period in 2019, police said. Boston had a 22% jump in domestic assault and battery reports between March 2019 and March 2020, and Seattle had a 21% increase in reports of domestic violence during the same time period.

        In non-urban areas, entire counties are seeing even higher increases. Hidalgo County, Texas has reported a 55% increase in domestic violence calls, while Morgan County, Ala. and Bay County, Fla. saw such calls nearly double, by 90%, in just one week.

        The incidents are becoming depressingly similar.

        In an eastern Pennsylvania town under a local shelter-in-place order, a man who lost his job due to the pandemic shot his girlfriend in the back and then killed himself on Monday. Just before he went into the basement to get his handgun, he became “extremely upset” about coronavirus, the victim, who survived, told police.

        ***

        In Colorado Springs, a woman accused of fatally shooting her husband in their home last month said he had brandished a knife at her, “blaming the coronavirus and stating he was not going to live through it,” according to court documents reported by the Colorado Springs Gazette.

        The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on domestic violence goes beyond simply cloistering people. As noted by Casey Tolan writing for CNN, the economic hit of job loss is not only a psychological stress, but can also prevent abused partners from escaping their abuser by moving out. The proximity of people living in the same home or apartment may also be preventing abused partners from reaching out for support or assistance, whether through a phone call to help lines or by contacting a close relative for help. As Katie Ray-Jones, the CEO of the National Domestic Violence Hotline, explains, “They can’t reach out safely, because their perpetrator is sitting right next to them.”

        Rhonda Voss, 63, a domestic violence activist and survivor in North Carolina, said being cooped up at home is a domestic violence victim’s nightmare.
        “I know they would be constantly walking on eggshells just trying their best to stay out of the way, to keep the person appeased,” she said. Getting out of the house can be “such a relief” for victims, she said, “and that’s not available that much now.”
        Domestic violence and abuse is rooted in power and control, and abusers are taking advantage of social distancing to exert new ways of controlling their victims. As reported by Madison Paulie and Julia Lurie for Mother Jones, the pandemic has, for some abusers, opened up entire new avenues of abuse:

        Advocates on the ground report that abusers are using social distancing as a means of exerting control over their partners and victims. Twahna Harris, an advocate for survivors in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, has been taking calls from victims who say the coronavirus has already intensified the fear and controlling behavior they live with on a daily basis. One woman who called Harris’ nonprofit, The Butterfly Society, wasn’t able to go to the grocery store to get essential supplies for her family because her husband controlled all their money. Another, a teacher stuck at home because schools are closed, said her partner demanded to review the receipt when she left the house to shop. “He looks over the receipt, what she’s paid, what time did she leave home, how long it took her to make it to Walmart, if the timeline adds up,” Harris says. She recalls the teacher telling her, “I am enslaved to him.”

        Domestic violence shelters are facing compound issues during this pandemic. While “social distancing” requirements are forcing some shelters to reduce bed counts, many are facing an increase in demand as the number of incidents nationwide increases.

        If you or someone you know is threatened by or the victim of domestic abuse or violence, many resources are available.

        __________2 comments:

        >Little Big Zebra

        Such weighs on my mind. Locally, here, rural poverty, high firearm ownership, high levels of child-age trauma from their child-aged parents’ trauma over generations and simplistically focused anger at “them” makes the area dangerous. Forcing containment with a threat of a viral contagion atop all of the other issues causes the inevitable explosive reaction, which now is turned upon those closest; spouses, children and pets.
        What concerns me most is deviant subcultures of seething anger comprised of local chapters of “III% Patriots” and so-called “right-wing militias”. Many local chapters in rural areas (Southern Poverty Law Center).

        >HemlokHex

        Sex toy companies reported massive increase last week. Viagra was selling at 10 times the usual rate in Spain.
        __________

        And this popped up two days ago:

        Another Republican Governor proves herself to be a damn fool

        https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2020/4/14/1937138/-Another-Republican-Governor-proves-herself-to-be-a-damn-fool

        The somnambulent, non-response of most Republican state governors to the worst public health crisis to strike the United States in over a century has been a textbook case in magical thinking, arrogance, and willful stupidity. South Dakota’s first-term governor, Kristi Noem, is no exception.
        From the Washington Post:

        As governors across the country fell into line in recent weeks, South Dakota’s top elected leader stood firm: There would be no statewide order to stay home.

        Such edicts to combat the spread of the novel coronavirus, Gov. Kristi L. Noem said disparagingly, reflected a “herd mentality.” It was up to individuals — not government — to decide whether “to exercise their right to work, to worship and to play. Or to even stay at home.”

        Citing her “commonsense conservative values,” Noem in the same April 2 speech suggested that South Dakotans should stop watching the national news. As reported in the Sioux Falls Argus Leader, Noem sought to draw a distinction between clean South Dakotans and those dirty New Yorkers.

        What South Dakotans should do, she said is stay the course, adjust as needed and stop watching the national news.

        “It’s so important not to turn on the news and look at NYC and think that that’s what Lemmon, South Dakota is going to face in a month,” Noem said. “It’s absolutely not true.”

        Of course, the thinly-veiled racism in the “New Yorkers” refrain has been echoed by other Republican governors resisting any efforts to pay more than casual lip service to the pandemic, most likely because they believe, as Donald Trump and Fox News assured them, that it would all soon “go away.”

        As it turns out, Noem was partly right. It wasn’t Lemmon, South Dakota that has turned into New York City. It’s Sioux Falls, the state’s most populous city, that is now facing one of the largest COVID-19 clusters in the country.

        But now South Dakota is home to one of the largest single coronavirus clusters anywhere in the United States, with more than 300 workers at a giant ­pork-processing plant falling ill. With the case numbers continuing to spike, the company was forced to announce the indefinite closure of the facility Sunday, threatening the U.S. food supply.

        The Smithfield plant, which supplies 5% of the pork consumed in the U.S., employs 3700 people, all of whom have been free to roam about the state and congregate for the last month without any restrictions, thanks to Noem’s “commonsense conservative values.” Employees there were forced to work in close proximity with no distancing measures in place, according to employees interviewed for the Post. The same employees now say that people throughout the city are becoming infected.

        Understandably, local communities and medical professionals within the state are now demanding some type of statewide shutdown to combat the spread of the virus. But Noem won’t back down—as she stated in her April 2 brief, South Dakotans are just better people than those that live in big cities on the coast. They have more “personal responsibility.”

        “The people themselves are primarily responsible for their safety,” Noem said. “They are the ones that are entrusted with expansive freedoms…[.]

        “Our sense of personal responsibility, our resiliency and our already sparse population density put us in a great position..[.]”

        Her only official action thus far in response to the Smithfield cluster has been to issue a shelter-in-place order in two counties for those over 65 and those with an underlying health condition. Everyone else in the state, it seems, is free to demonstrate their “personal responsibility” and “resiliency.” Instead, the governor used her press briefing this week to brag about the “exciting” potential of…hydroxychloroquine, which she heard about from Donald Trump. That and her wonderful conversations with Trump’s son-in-law.

        [S]he used a media briefing Monday to announce trials of a drug that President Trump has repeatedly touted as a potential breakthrough in the fight against the coronavirus, despite a lack of scientific evidence.

        “It’s an exciting day,” she boasted, repeatedly citing her conversations with presidential son-in-law Jared Kushner.

        Noem’s own advisors have told her that as many as 70% of South Dakotans are anticipated to be infected with COVID-19 by the time the pandemic peaks in that state. She acknowledged then that the state doesn’t have nearly enough facilities to hospitalize those who will need it, “but we have a plan to get there.”

        Mayors of other cities within the state, such as Rapid City, have attempted to enforce stay-at-home restrictions, but say that without state-wide support and guidance their efforts are generating resentment from businesses who feel they are being unfairly restricted.

        As the Post article notes, Noem’s non-response in essence mirrors that of other governors of rural states—all of them Republicans, who believe that their citizens’ so-called “homespun” characters and broad traveling distances between homes and businesses will protect them. But whether that belief is rooted in genuine conviction, political expediency or just willful ignorance, it isn’t going to make any difference to the virus.
        ________

        The only hope is that there will be a great cleansing of stupid from the gene pool. Oh, and expect more of that in roughly two weeks in those five states that didn’t keep the churches closed for Easter.

        Can’t say they weren’t flipping warned.

        sealintheSelkirks

        Liked by 1 person

  13. Kevin. YOU an Alarmist? NO, it couldn’t be! By the way, do you know which Republican political hack came up with that label by the way? I know climate ‘CHANGE’ came from that Cheney/bush hack so I’m guessing it’s another Repub attack droid.
    _____

    I followed the link below from another article I was reading. Never heard of them so their credibility is unknown, but looking at their home page…maybe seriously legit.

    After reading it I caught myself nodding my head. Then thought about the possibility of SARS II/CoV 19 being transferred back, human to animal, with some kind of mutation. Especially in the red areas covering the US Southern States map link in my last post where a huge number of these places are located in this country. Where an enormous number of people are going to fall sick & die in the next two months if that map is anywhere close to being accurate.

    What this says makes sense due to having always been so very vulnerable since we can catch pretty much everything from pigs already! It isn’t any wonder that ancient Hebrews were afraid of eating pork. They had no idea what was killing them so they invented ‘rules from god’ about eating it:

    New research suggests industrial livestock, not wet markets, might be origin of Covid-19

    https://grain.org/e/6437?fbclid=IwAR1pAR1L0LXJbqZp_xHAOUsG7105c9UYQf2ZToT7u5o4SRE7qohGzYcDt4w
    _____

    Just a few weeks ago this guy was one of those drug dealing illegal immigrant criminal rapists here to steal our jobs that the Trump Regime was screaming about ICE grabbing and sending back to his shithole country, right? Based solely on nationality and skin color and last name he most certainly could have been.

    And now the guy goes and does WHAT? Like the white guy that threw acid on that brown face a while back (also in Texas I think), this brown face becomes just like that white face due to FEAR of other.

    So this is a species problem I take it, and not just a racial one?

    A revolting short read no doubt below. Should I make a prediction of what this presages? Or since it’s already happening…

    Texas racist says coronavirus fears made him stab an Asian American family as they grocery shopped

    https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2020/4/2/1933698/-Texas-racist-says-coronavirus-fears-made-him-stab-an-Asian-American-family-as-they-grocery-shopped
    ______

    COVID-19: We Won’t Go Back to Normal, Because Normal Was the Problem

    When a global pandemic strikes, the private-sector austerity model simply falls apart.

    https://consortiumnews.com/2020/03/27/covid-19-we-wont-go-back-to-normal-because-normal-was-the-problem/
    ______

    Ain’t the first Fascists to rise in this country. I would really like to see this short doc film. Great picture at link, too:

    https://anightatthegarden.com/
    ______

    Kodiak, Alaska received just 0.19″ of precipitation in March. That’s only 3 percent of normal and makes 2020 by far the driest March of record. The previous driest was 0.40” in 1918.
    ______

    As of 4/3/20, these Trump Repub governors refuse to issue ‘stay at home’ because, well, the bidness of ‘murka is bidness! Let the cash registers ring! All stores, theaters, restaurants, bars, beaches, parks, etc etc are open. How ’bout that?

    Alabama—GOP Gov. Kay Ivey
    Arkansas—GOP Gov. Asa Hutchinson
    Iowa—GOP Gov. Kim Reynolds
    Missouri—GOP Gov. Mike Parson
    Nebraska—GOP Gov. Pete Ricketts
    North Dakota—GOP Gov. Doug Burgum
    Oklahoma—GOP Gov. Kevin Stitt
    South Carolina—GOP Gov. Henry McMaster
    South Dakota—GOP Gov. Kristi Noem
    Texas—GOP Gov. Greg Abbott
    Utah—GOP Gov. Gary Herbert
    Wyoming—GOP Gov. Mark Gordon

    That damn map from my last post feels so REAL…
    ______

    Sure hope my book makes it into a reality where every business actually IS shut down in this state.

    sealintheSelkirks

    Liked by 2 people

  14. Sheila chambers says:

    Well Seal, at least you like all Canadians have HEALTH CARE! We have people here DYING because they can’t afford our PRIVATE FOR PROFIT “health” INSURANCE SCAM.

    Down on the SW Oregon Coast, we are in lockdown, can’t go anywhere except the food shop,drug store, doctors office or get food from a take out.
    Parks, state beaches, campgrounds, hotels, motels, transient lodging are closed, tourists are NOT welcome.
    This is or was a tourist town.
    When I do get out,l see a lot of clueless MORONS,they get too close to other people, panic buy TOILET PAPER! Geeze, I guess their full of SHIT!
    We can’t buy N-95 masks here because we don’t make those here, their made in CHINA, no gloves because their also made in CHINA, No venilators, same problem, OUTSOURCING.

    So here we are, in the richest country the world has ever known but we have people DYING HERE because they can’t afford their insulin, a home or health “care”, but we do have TRILLIONS OF DOLLARS for ENDLESS WARMONGERING, USELESS BORDER WALLS & TAX MONEY to “help” the RICHEST CORPORATIONS ON EARTH, while those too poor to pay taxes GET NOTHING!

    With this lock down, aircraft aren’t flying, cars sit idle, many businesses are closed, their workers now unemployed & C02 is falling but then so are the airasols that kept us cooler by reflecting some solar energy back into space, now it’s all coming down & warming us up even more!

    Looks like a long, hot, miserable, sickly summer.

    This is one way “nature” culls the overpopulated herd, starvation, wars & DISEASE!
    Now let’s encourage those believers to trust in their “god”, go to church, get close, hug, kiss & let’s see the power of prayer & faith.

    If “god” is like he was in WW2 for the Jews, many of them will get sick with COVIS-19,some will die despite all their prayers.
    Is this our “black swan” event?
    Will civilization fail & collapse, stand by & BRACE FOR IMPACT!

    Liked by 2 people

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Kevin Hester

Kevin Hester is currently living on Rakino Island, a small island in the Hauraki Gulf near Auckland, New Zealand, monitoring the unravelling of the biosphere and volunteering at the Rakino Island Nursery is currently developing a proposal to create a marine reserve near by. The Island has no grid tied electricity or reticulated water.  I catch my own water from the roof and generate my electricity from the ample solar radiation on the island.

My Submission to the Ministry of the Environment
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