Closing Thought–18Mar20

By now everyone should be in a lather over the virus that is raging….but how does it compare to other pandemics…..leave it to the Old Professor to inject some history into this thing…..

When a mysterious new coronavirus started to spread out of Wuhan, China, last year, fear began to grow that it would turn into a new global pandemic.

Now, months after reports of an outbreak began, the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus has infected nearly 100,000 and killed just over 3,300 people around the world — a rapid spread in which some historians see parallels to deadly historical diseases.

Graham Mooney, a medical historian at Johns Hopkins University, told Futurism that the ongoing coronavirus outbreak bears a number of striking similarities to past outbreaks like Smallpox and Ebola — and especially to the Spanish flu pandemic that killed tens of millions around the world during the years between 1918 and 1922.

What were the worse pandemics…..

  • HIV/AIDS Pandemic (at its peak, 2005-2012) Death Toll: 36 million. …
  • Flu Pandemic (1968) …
  • Asian Flu (1956-1958) …
  • Flu Pandemic (1918) …
  • Sixth Cholera Pandemic (1910-1911) …
  • Flu Pandemic (1889-1890) …
  • Third Cholera Pandemic (1852–1860) …
  • The Black Death (1346-1353)
  • More……

Scientists and medical researchers have for years have differed over the exact definition of a pandemic (is it a pandemic, or an epidemic), but one thing everyone agrees on is that the word describes the widespread occurrence of disease, in excess of what might normally be expected in a geographical region.

Cholera, bubonic plague, smallpox, and influenza are some of the most brutal killers in human history. And outbreaks of these diseases across international borders, are properly defined as pandemic, especially smallpox, which throughout history, has killed between 300-500 million people in its 12,000 year existence.

Outbreak: 10 of the Worst Pandemics in History

In the US since 1918’s Spanish Flu…..

And then there are those that say we are making too much of this virus…..

As a longtime health care reporter, the unfolding coronavirus pandemic represents everything I’ve read about — from the early days of epidemiology to the staggering toll of the 1918 Spanish Flu pandemic — but had not covered in my lifetime.

And still, I have been caught off guard by the pushback from top elected officials and even some friends and acquaintances who keep comparing it to the flu.

“So last year 37,000 Americans died from the common Flu,” President Donald Trump wrote on Twitter on March 9. “It averages between 27,000 and 70,000 per year. Nothing is shut down, life & the economy go on. At this moment there are 546 confirmed cases of CoronaVirus, with 22 deaths. Think about that!”

Class Dismissed!

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Why Toilet Paper?

Closing Thought–Mar20

There have been lots of interesting stories surrounding this virus outbreak….like ISIS telling its people to not travel for now…..and attempts at authoritarian rule……to include the empty shelves in most stores these days.

3 of the main products that are missing from stores and hand sanitizer (understandable) and paper towels (sort of understandable) and toilet paper (working on that)……none of the main symptoms of this virus has anything that massive amounts of TP will be needed……then why are we hording TP?

There’s nothing quite like the behavior of panicky humans—especially when it comes to hoarding. Let a blizzard approach or a hurricane churn toward shore, and we descend on stores, buying up more batteries, bottled water and canned foods than we could use in a lifetime. We’re seeing the same thing again as America hunkers down against the novel coronavirus, and of all of the products that are being snatched up the fastest, there’s one that’s in special demand: toilet paper.

The Washington Post reports a run on the rolls, with both Costco and the Giant supermarket chain stripped all but clean. Even Amazon’s physical stores “appeared to be down to single rolls of novelty toilet paper in some places Friday,” the Post said. The New York Times similarly reports from a Whole Foods supermarket in Somerville, Mass., where shoppers had to be limited to two packages of toilet paper each, lest they strip the store bare.

Like I said in the beginning…..this one is a bit a head scratcher….

A thought from Australia……

We’ve had to deal with drought, bushfires and a killer virus.

And now we’re having to cope with a toilet paper famine entirely of our own making.

Yep, the hoarders are getting the last laugh because while their panic buying has meant they can merrily wipe their way through the winter and beyond, the rest of us are having to find alternatives.

The trouble is, our toilet paper shortage is not real. It’s an artificial famine caused by the selfish who think their bum is the only one that matters. Toilet paper is made in Australia and if we all buy responsibly there’s enough to go round. Or, rather, down.

But why is TP a hot item?  Really, why?

It’s a scene that’s become familiar around the world from the United States to France to Australia: Rows of empty supermarket shelves where toilet paper used to be, the result of coronavirus-induced panic buying.

What exactly is it about the rolls of tissue that has caused mayhem across cultures, including, at times, violent clashes that have reverberated on social media?

At its most basic, say experts, the answer lies in game theory: If everyone buys only what they need, there will be no shortages. If some people start panic buying, the optimal strategy will be for you to follow suit, to make certain you have enough squares to spare.

I realize these days we are focused on our butts….we have products that keep you from smelling up the bath with a BM…..

Any Thoughts?

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

2020 Latest Abbreviated Primary

In these days of virus panic and we are still exercising our right to vote (while we still have it)…..3 more 2020 primaries were settled yesterday.

The MSM can be proud of their efforts to make the corporate stooge Biden the nominee…..Florida, Illinois and Arizona…..

Polls have closed in the three states that went ahead with their primaries Tuesday, and the result is another dominating night for Joe Biden. The former VP cemented his lead over Bernie Sanders in the delegate race by sweeping all three contests—Florida, Illinois, and Arizona, as called by the AP. Despite Ohio’s decision to postpone its own primary Tuesday, the night still has a large number of delegates at stake, 441, and margins of victory will be important. In incomplete results, Biden led 61% to 22% in Florida, 59% to 36% in Illinois, and 42% to 29% in Arizona. Tulsi Gabbard was registering at less than 1% in all three states. Florida was the biggest prize of the night, with 219 delegates up for grabs.

Generally speaking, missing poll workers, reshuffled voting locations, and a lack of disinfectant supplies made for a “chaotic” day of voting, notes the Washington Post. On Tuesday night, both candidates addressed the COVID-19 crisis. “You know, it’s in moments like these we realize we need to put politics aside and work together as Americans,” Biden said. “The coronavirus doesn’t care if you’re a Democrat or Republican.” Sanders, for his part, said “this is an unprecedented moment that will require an unprecedented amount of money,” via livestream from DC, per CNN. He estimated it would take “$2 trillion to prevent deaths, job losses and to avoid an economic catastrophe.”

The countdown to the convention has started and Biden is looking like the nominee….

Looks like another “hold your nose and vote” election.

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Those Pre-Existing Conditions

With all the “news” about the world and its struggle with the newest virus to invade…..I got to wondering since the GOP is still trying every way possible to kill what little remains of Obamacare….what would happen with pre-existing conditions when it is totally destroyed?

In a headspinning week with President Trump making misleading claims as the nation wrestles with the outbreak of coronavirus, he also weighed in on an issue that could upend the lives of nearly 54 million Americans.

At a recent town hall organized by Fox News, anchor Martha MacCallum asked Trump how he would protect people with pre-existing conditions, which are guaranteed under the Affordable Care Act. President Obama signed it into law in March 2010 and it’s his signature legislative achievement.

Now, it’s a case; it’s called Texas vs. — you understand — it’s Texas who is suing.  They want to terminate it.  But everybody there is also saying, and everybody — we have our great senator from Pennsylvania.  Thank you very much, Pat, for being here.  (Applause.)  And Pat Toomey.

And — but, very important — and our — by the way, our great congressmen, I have to say, they were warriors.  Right?   Real warriors, in terms of the fake impeachment.  I will tell you that.  (Applause.)

But, so Texas is trying — and it’s Texas and many states — they’re trying to terminate, but they want to put something that’s much better.  They’re terminating it to put much better.  And they’ve all pledged that preexisting conditions, 100 percent taken care of.

(Market Insider)

A rambling, bambling, answer… will we be protected or is it just Texas will be protected…..I am not sure anymore.

A closing thought on Medicare For All……and the economics…..

It appears that 20 top economists think it will save money……

By eliminating insurance premiums and out-of-pocket expenses, and lowering overall healthcare costs, Medicare for All will result in enormous savings for almost all households, all except the richest households who will pay more in taxes.

Rejecting “loose talk” from corporate Democrats, the media, and insurance industry that a single-payer system would be unaffordable, twenty leading U.S. economists on Tuesday released an open letter endorsing Medicare for All as the best way to reduce soaring national healthcare costs, significantly cut expenses for most U.S. households, and save countless lives.

Just saying!

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Syria: 10 Year Anniversary

Ten years ago this month, 15 March, to be exact….Syrians took to the streets as part of what the media entitled the Arab Spring….Syrians were protesting for a better nation….little did the know that they had stared down a path that would bring about the destruction of “norm” for the nation.

Syria’s brutal conflict enters its 10th year Sunday with President Bashar al-Assad’s regime consolidating its hold over a war-wracked country with a decimated economy where foreign powers flex their muscle.

When Syrians took to the streets on March 15, 2011, they could scarcely have imagined their anti-government protests would turn into a complex war entangling rebels, jihadists and outside forces.

At least 384,000 people have since died, including more than 116,000 civilians, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights war monitor said Saturday.

The conflict has displaced more than 11 million people internally and abroad.

When I worked in the Middle East I was stationed in Aleppo….an old city where the concept of the “coffeehouse” began… there is very little left to the city….nothing I could recognize.

A sad anniversary for Syria.

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”