Today will be a little different, as frankly there is nothing truly new about COVID-19. We are all watching the numbers, trying to figure out which model is correct while dealing with incomplete, inaccurate, and outright false information. All we can do is hang on and hope for the best. That, and try to figure out what we can given the above. Powerline has some good notes and queries.
Beyond COVID-19, we know two things for sure. China started this, and both it and others are happy to take advantage of our focus on COVID-19.
That this originated in China is beyond doubt. Powerline has a good article here with lots of linky goodness. Legal Insurrection looks at the theory that it did escape from one of the labs in Wuhan. While I maintain my position that it is not a finished bioweapon, I would be very unsurprised to find one of their labs had screwed the pooch, if not ate it, yet again as they have a history of it. Even if not an engineered economic bioweapon, since it is having that result, why not take advantage of it?
China is engaged in a global propaganda campaign trying to both reshape it’s image as doing a good job in response to what was then an epidemic, and to deal with internal issues. Both of those have to do with the need for Xi and the leadership to be beyond reproach, as if they have to be if they are to retain control.
The Chinese people were, and apparently still are from indications, not buying the story. A new massive round of suppression is underway, with even a number of very prominent people being disappeared (wonder if the number of organs available for transplant has gone up as well?). The open contempt I saw a few weeks ago for the leadership caste — even from those in the caste — and for XI was something I never thought would never see in my lifetime.
But, there is more to it. Xi has global dreams, and has seen them rocked by the Trump sanctions and trade deals. Bad enough his bluff was called there, but then came COVID-19 to shake the people’s faith (or at least tolerance) of his rule. While we are focused so intently on our COVID-19 issue, why not take advantage of it?
This piece from the Asia Times showcases what is being done militarily. Now, in addition to that, we have things happening elsewhere in SE Asia, the Middle East, Venezuela, and in Mexico and Central America. On some of it, I will just say that there are swirls in the data. Straws in the wind if you will, but definite efforts by those who wish America ill to also seize this opportunity to get some licks on. Could there be some coordination on all these efforts? I highly suspect so, and suspect there is one player who sees a chance to take advantage and perhaps minimize the damage they have done to themselves. While I am not sure that they want a full-up war, as this article considers, I would be surprised if there is not some form of military incident in the China Sea in the next 7-10 days. I also would only be surprised if we don’t see something in the Caribbean or on the Mexican border soon.
Why? Let’s just say lots of swirls/straws. One thing that struck me on Wednesday at the briefing was the language used. Phrases, particularly certain phrases in government speak, have meaning. One thing that caught my ear and got my full attention, was when the phrase “National Security Threat” was applied to the Mexican (and other) cartels. There was some other discussion, including national intelligence data and how it could not be discussed. On top of the warning to Iran and their proxies, it is clear a lot of things are potentially incoming besides COVID-19. Buckle up kiddies, we could have A Deeper Blue.
Turning back more fully to COVID-19, here’s a good editorial in the Washington Examiner on the failures (complete in my book) of the media. It pairs nicely with this article from the Mises Institute calling for the FDA to be held accountable for the deaths they have caused (even before COVID-19). This NYT opinion piece looks at the possibility that more medical people are dying because they are getting a higher load of the virus. As discussed before, in The Game of Loads and Vectors, a single microbe will do nothing, a sufficient dose will trigger an immune response and make you resistant, a larger load will make you sick, and a higher load will kill you. The question here is how are the medical people getting the viral equivalent of LD50 despite precautions? For those screeching and thumping their chests that they don’t see the word quarantine in the Constitution, here are two very good articles: one at Powerline and one at National Review.
To end the day on a lighter note, a tobacco company says it has a vaccine for COVID-19 in animal testing that is made from tobacco. Who is a good boy? This dog delivering wine is, that’s who. Now, because it will piss off Winnie the Flu, er, Xi…
Since the media isn’t going to say it, once again, COVID-19 is not Capt. Tripps. It is not the flu. Chill, distance, and use good hygiene. STOP THE PANIC!
Also, a reminder once again: if you are sick or think you are sick, DO NOT GO TO WORK OR TO VISIT PEOPLE. Stay the frack home. Don’t be Stupid, go to work/out, and insist on getting up close and personal to everyone you meet. Yes, Stupid is capitalized as I work with Stupid, who did just that. Don’t be Stupid.
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If you suspect you have COVID-19 or have been exposed: call your state health department and work with them so that you can be dealt with in a way that minimizes the chance of spreading the virus to those helping you and to the general public. Can’t get them? Call your local department or see if your health service has online/telemedicine screening set up; or see if one who has will let you use it even if you are not in their network. Do not go out in public, and don’t go to an ER or other facility without calling ahead. Be smart.
Use the interactive graphic to keep track of things. Is COVID19 an epidemic? Yes. Is it a Pandemic? Yes. Is there need for panic? NO. HELL NO. Should you be paying attention? Yes. Hell yes. Should you be preparing? Yes, better late than never. And good luck finding/getting stuff.
Want to avoid catching COVID19 here in the U.S.? Wash your flippin hands frequently, wash them thoroughly every time you use the bathroom, then follow with hand sanitizer after every washing, use hand sanitizer liberally when you can’t wash on a regular basis. Cover your mouth and nose when you sneeze, and stay away from those who don’t. Also, keep your bugger hooks out of/away from your eyes, nose, and mouth. Do NOT shake hands with anyone, and avoid touching or being touched by strangers. Or your strange friends.
Avoid travel if at all possible. If you have to travel, or go out for any reason, use lots of hand sanitizer and go to full flu protocols. If you have to use a public restroom, take full precautions including using paper towels and such to handle faucets, doors,etc. Believe it or not, this was highly recommended before now, and major grocery chains have long told employees to use those practices to avoid getting or spreading colds, flu, etc. Not many actually do it, but…
If you own a business, make sure your employees know the above protocols. Have someone who refuses to wash their hands or otherwise follow the protocols? Talk to them, write them up, and if necessary fire them as they now pose a risk of infection to you and your customers. Extreme? Yes, but while the CDC and others are working to slow it down, odds are it is already here and could hit hard and fast. Prepare for the worst and hope for the best.
I want to reiterate that there is no need for panic, but there is a strong need to be alert, be informed, and be prepared.
Good Sources Of Information On COVID-19
Instapundit (no longer doing roundups, but great articles from Glenn and his team)
South China Morning Post (decent, some salt may be needed)
Business Insider (decent, even if they did fall for some lies about Trump)
More to come
Local Independent Businesses That Need Your Support
More to come
Other COVID19/COVID-19/2019-nCoV articles: