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This morning I awoke from my mild re-occurring bad dream. The one where I have skipped all my college classes for a whole semester and now must face the prospect of exams and telling my grand-parent why I flunked out of school. This is something I never did and wonder many mornings, why this dream?
This morning was different. Now awake, the nightmare we are facing seems much worse. Pulling the cover back over my head was not going to help. Segments of our economy are facing shutdown. Markets are reacting wildly, unable to stop the spiral down into territory unknown/unimaginable. Retail as we know it, likely will never return with mass store closings ensuing.
Yes, a global pathogen. There is nothing new here - the Black Death was a devastating epidemic of the bubonic plague that struck Europe and Asia in the mid-1300s. Over a period of five years, it would kill more than 20 million people in Europe – almost one-third of the continent’s population. (history.com/topics/middle-ages/black-death) The indigenous peoples of the Americas were spared these plagues until Eurasian diseases such as influenza, pneumonic plagues, and smallpox devastated the Native Americans, who did not have immunity to them - global travel's first pandemic.
Today we have vast scientific knowledge to understand pathogens but still lack the ability to do simple preventable measures. This past week one passenger who was sick flew from New York (JFK) to Palm Beach (PBI). What an incredible selfish act that unnecessarily exposed many. There is a lesson for all of us here. You cannot fix stupid.
I do not subscribe to the panic that seems to be occurring. Yesterday I saw one woman leaving my Publix Market with three carts full. She pushed one full cart, her teen daughter pushed another and a Publix bagger pushed another. I was not sure on going in, if I would find anything left.
The post-mortem on the next four weeks will likely turn up many faults. The nation’s inadequate coronavirus testing has meant that the true scope of the problem is still unknown. More importantly, a lack of leadership at the top. A reporter asked the president if he took responsibility for the failure of the government he leads to resolve this sooner. “No,” he replied, “I don’t take responsibility at all”.
Another reporter asked if he [Trump] took responsibility for dissolving the White House office charged with coordinating responses to pandemics. (Beth Cameron, its former director, has an op-ed explaining how damaging this move was.) Trump denied any responsibility for this decision, too. “You say me, I didn’t do it … I don’t know about that,” he huffed, calling the query a “nasty question,” and cutting off the reporter’s microphone.
Still on February 29 Trump was calling the Coronavirus the 'Democrats' 'new hoax'. Watch the video and understand that precious time was lost.
New York Magazine - Intelligencer:
Trump has been quick to take credit for the economy up to last week, but now our reality has changed. Harry Truman once said, “The buck stops here.” It is the most hackneyed cliche about the presidency, and leadership in general. Trump has never had to follow this principle, in a career that ran from inheriting $400 million from his father through various bankruptcies. Trump instead follows the ethos of a different famous leader — Tony Soprano, who once said, “Shit runs down hill, money goes up.”"Every state doing their own thing, different cities doing their own thing, it's confusing, it's chaos," New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Monday night. "The federal government should come up, step in, and say this is what we're going to do..."
Never have we needed a strong leader more. Anyone at this point that can be a strong leader, please step forward. Our Jenga stack has not collapsed and it is not too late. I am personally in the demographic that could see the worst of the Covid-19's' effects. This is personal.
In the absence of leadership, let us all do our part to get through.
I plan to continue to write and will make personal comments as to my health status if changes occur. Please comment and we can use this and other forums to break the tedium that will ensue. Stay healthy. Stay safe. Avoid large groups. Let us all ESCAPE this challenge healthy, smarter and stronger.