3:10 To Yuma
My Contribution to KOVID Konfusion

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Grumpy

Oh my gym shut down as of last night. So all the elements of my normal life are gone.

grumpy

Don't you think Mac that Dreher is looking about right with 'unprecedented national catastrophe'?

Its not looking like such an exaggeration today - not in the USA or in the UK or on the continent of Europe. Its not the disease, its the cure for the disease.

With all the restaurants and bars and cinemas closing, and so many small businesses just shutting up for good, it is difficult to see how there cannot be an enormous number of bankruptcies, and a massive recession to follow.

I like Romney's idea of giving everyone a thousand bucks - I would spend it in my favourite small businesses in about four hours.

And eventually we are going to owe China, not just the Corona Virus but a trillion trillion dollars.

Marianne

Dreher has one-upped it today, relating a dream about how everyone in the world is going to die. Sheesh.

Mac

! I missed that.

"Don't you think Mac that Dreher is looking about right with 'unprecedented national catastrophe'?" I might argue with "unprecedented," but yeah, definitely looking a lot more that way. And as you say the cure (or prevention) is now looking worse than the disease.

This can't go on for all that long before people start saying "I've had enough. Let the damned thing run its course, and if a lot of old people die, I'm sorry, but we can't just shut down the country indefinitely out of concern for them." And I would agree with them, even though I'm officially one of those old people.

grumpy

Mac, Im not sure. In the UK they began (a few weeks ago) with the strategy of slowing down the spread of the virus rather than 'stopping' or suppressing the virus altogether. The idea was supposed to be that 1) you cannot quarantine people indefinitey, 2) if we could make it peak later we could prevent the hospitals being overwhelmed, and 3) if the virus spread slowly some people would develop 'herd immunity.' It sounded ok to me.

This strategy has been abandoned. The problem is that the number of deaths risked by this strategy is too high. They say that the 'slow it down' as against 'suppress' strategy risks a million people dying.

I agree that quarantine won't work indefinitely because people will need to go out and socialize (look at the dog park! - people don't do that just for their dogs' enjoyment). Everyone heard the news reports about the young people on the beach in Florida and partying for spring break in Carolina. A young nitwit interviewed on the radio said 'we are not afraid'. O boy, it is not about your psychology, duh, its about a virus. Parties of young Italians are being broken up by the police. The South Koreans, who have been under quarantine, I guess since February, are refusing to stay put. Even outside of the problem that America is going bankrupt, people will not stay put for too long. What 'too long' is, is anyone's guess. Pascal said all the problems in the world stem from the fact that people cannot sit quiety in their rooms. He must have known perfectly well its incredibly boring sitting quietly in your room.

Im still sticking to not reading political articles - no Spectator, no DT! No Morning Dispatch. No Remnant podcast, no Commentary podcast! The idea at the beginning of lent was that I could read about the Coronavirus because, at that point, I needed to figure out whether or not I could buy a ticket to France. We know I did, and made a bad decision, apparently (unless there's a miracle cure like in the vampire movies - they never do a year of testing in the vampire movies). Its too late to stop reading about the coronavirus now! Over the week-end I cracked and read some newletters in my gmail box by David French and Erik Erickson about the coronavirus. Both of them were about our Biblical duty to the old and how it is not open to question. They don't discuss what we do about very long periods of quarantine that bankrupt the economy. I guess that will come. I've got at least one podcast from Commentary in my inbox which advertizes itself as being about how quarantine does not work. Well, its Lent, and I didn't even listen to my own podcast when it came out. I don't need to listen to Pod and Noah Rothman saying what I already know.

Im going to confess I did read the Caitlin Flanagan piece about Harry & M. I shouldn't have done - it was clearly not about the coronavirus! I was just glad that she said they went too far with their demands.

Rob G

I've stopped reading Dreher, at least his COVID-19 posts. It's arch-negative bubblethink, just as the deniers are in hyper-positive bubblethink. I'm sticking largely to what we're getting from the CDC and local and state government health departments. I really don't need to be told that this is the end of the world any more than I need to hear that nothing's happening and it's all mass hysteria. The truth as per usual resides somewhere between the two extremes.

I'm a little confused about the whole "flatten the curve" thing. Seems to me that efforts to both slow it down and suppress it are part of that strategy. Am I missing something?

Grumpy

Im confused about it too Rob G. I feel like I can understand it when my English stepfather was explaining it to me on the phone but I could never explain it to anyone else which is always a bad sign

grumpy

Both David French and Erik Erkikkson seem to be trying to navigate a mean between the crazies on the left who think its all the president's fault and we can't say it came from China, and the loons on the right who think the Koreans sent it here deliberately. They are hearing the rightwing stuff from their evangelical friends. As Mac said, it has become difficult to read about the Coronavirus now without reading about politics.

Stu

My parish priest here in Rock Springs is having Mass live at 7 am each morning on Facebook. Just got done watching it.

Mac

"trying to navigate a mean between the crazies on the left who think its all the president's fault and we can't say it came from China, and the loons on the right who think the Koreans sent it here deliberately."

Indeed. And I don't think we can discount the interest of the left in making things seem, and to some extent be, as bad as possible leading up to the election. They've been desperately attempting to get rid of Trump since the moment the election went his way. Which doesn't mean the danger isn't real, it just means that has to be taken into account in the attempt to figure out what's really going on.

Certainly, obviously, we have a "Biblical duty to the old." But tradeoffs are just part of life. The inevitable example: think how many lives would be saved if the speed limit everywhere was 20mph. Or, better, if the automobile was banned. It's not like ending the quarantine would be the same as picking out people and deliberately killing them for the greater good. The risk to any particular person, old or young, is at least partly conjectural.

Gruompy

Rob The original English ‘slow the spread’ Model included leaving the schools open. Because children appear not to be much at risk. The stop or suppress model is basically shelter in place even if thats not the legal situation. It means stop everything and stay home

As a joke I’ve been saying that closing the schools in America effectively means shelter in place because everyone is at home looking after the kids

Grumpy

I think French and Erickson are Leading with the duty with to the old Because a lot of people they are in daily conversation with are in denial because Trump. They also appreciate particularly Erickson that the behavior of the left practically causes other people to be in denial. So I think they have to talk to the denial people first and say look we do have a biblically warranted duty to the old. They are both smart guys and Im sure that once they get that first message across they’re going to go into the question of trade offs. They have got an audience who have got to be told that this is a real threat and they have a duty to their elders. That’s where they are right now

Stu

With his response to this crisis it is hard to imagine that trump could possibly be re-elected. He is a complete buffoon. The left doesn't need to do or say anything, just continue a loop of all the nonsense he has spouted from the beginning. It is an embarrassment to the nation.

Rob G

Not true, Stu. If we come out of this in the fall with the effects not being too terrible, and if the economy remains relatively intact, Trump could very well reap the benefits of that electorally. I realize that those are two big "ifs," but they're not beyond the realm of possibility.

As for me, I'm prepared to have a "None of the Above 2020!" bumper sticker made. (In 2012 I had one made that said "White-Pinkman 2012: Respect the Chemistry")

grumpy

Stu, I don't agree either. Yes, Trump is not the ideal commander in chief right now. The TV broadcast where he was vague about who was being blocked from returning flights to the USA and made it sound like trade and goods from Europe were also being blocked was just terrible, and typical. But according to Erickson, he was criticized back in January or February for blocking flights from China - that was Xenophobia back then; now its 'not doing enough'. And the business about not calling this 'Wuhan flu' or 'Chinese flu' is so stupid - we have had Hong Kong flu, Asian flu, etc all my life. Ebola is apparently a river in Africa. Is it unfair to pigs to talk about swine flu? Poor Wilbur!

If Im an American citizen by November, I will use the liberty by actually 'not voting' for the first time.

Stu

If it means 4 more years of trump and this whole thing ending as soon as possible, then that is okay! :-) However, I will vote for the other older man regardless.

Rob G

"If it means 4 more years of trump and this whole thing ending as soon as possible, then that is okay!"

Yeah, that's exactly the way I'm looking at it. I'll take a good end to the thing even if it means DT getting re-elected, as opposed to it dragging on and him losing as a result.

By the way, a co-worker just explained the connection between COVID-19 and the toilet paper shortage: every time somebody sneezes ten people sh*t themselves.

grumpy

there's a funny video going round with someone sneezing and everyone attacks them.

there's a funnier video out there with a professor singing 'I will zoom' to the tune of 'I'll survive'. I may not find it funny any more this time next week. Zoom classes start on Monday. I've done zoom meetings for our podcast, and even a zoom meeting with editors in different countries whilst on a bus to DC in January. I think I can hack zooming with 15 kids ok, though an IT guy at the dog park yesterday said the system keeps going down.

Glad to say this mid Western University is paying all the food people during the interim.

grumpy

I heard that #boomerremover is one hashtag going around. Someone's kids just told me #boomerdoomer is another one.

Grumpy

This is the professor singing

https://www.insidehighered.com/quicktakes/2020/03/17/%E2%80%98i-will-survive%E2%80%99-teaching-online

Mac

He's good! I was about to ask what "zoom" means but it's clear enough from the lyrics.

I feel sorry for the tech people having to make this happen. Poorer schools are likely to have a very rough time of it, as their infrastructure may not be able to handle this. Or maybe it's all "cloud" based now and the school's infrastructure is not the gating factor.

There's a really good chance that this is going to kill some small liberal arts colleges that have been teetering for a long time now. Recruiting students is hard enough, but if you can't go out and meet them, and they can't come to campus...

Mac

I ran across "boomer remover" a couple of days ago. I've been seeing that basic sentiment here and there for the past decade or so. It's kind of startling to hear people wish for your death, even if it's not personal.

Stu

A friend at our old school told me that someone in the administration said in a meeting, "We are one catastrophe away from closing." I hope that is not the case, Mac.

Funny "boomer" story. A lady I work with, who I think is right around 40 said one of her children said to her, "Okay, Boomer!"

grumpy

I think that after about a month of this, when the governments cannot continue supporting all the businesses that would close and the people who are newly out of work, they will just tell the oldies to stay home. The oldies will be ordered home, possibly to baby sit the young whose schools are closing until September. The rest of us will start recirculating.

Other than that, I think they might let us volunteer in large numbers to test vaccines. Yes I know they could end up with large numbers of people sick from the vaccines. But Im not sure what else they can do, if they really can't do the normal tests on the vaccines in less than a year to eighteen months.

Mac

"one catastrophe away from closing" as you know is really not much of an exaggeration. All these little schools that are dependent on tuition and federal loans to survive from one year to the next have been an endangered species for a long time.

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