Questions for those who like to think...

  
By:  thomas  •  one month ago  •  148 comments

Questions for those who like to think...
Why?

(Here is my second attempt because I accidentally closed the window trying to put a picture in after typing for an hour... So it probably won't be anything like I had it originally.)

Several questions are bubbling around in my mind as I write this article, one of which is: How much pressure can the institutions, governments, polities which we separate ourselves into, by and under take before they respond in a meaningful and positive way? Are they capable of such a feat? The present pandemic lends itself handily as an example.

Governments, health professionals, et.al. knew that a pandemic was possible, and probable. They repeatedly warned us that the only variable was when. Indeed, George W. Bush heeded these warnings and prepared for such an eventuality, as did other governments around the world, so we (humanity) were somewhat (even if drastically under) prepared, at least from a logistical standpoint. If you did not know that a pandemic was possible, you have not been paying attention. 

Anyway, in addition to the tremendous burden that this pandemic has and is putting on healthcare, now we find ourselves in the position where millions of people are without employment, without the wherewithal to pay their expenses. Thousands if not millions of businesses worldwide are unable to pay their employees, their vendors and creditors. Governments are looking at their revenue streams disappearing. All of these for an indefinite period of time. The world is teetering on the brink of recession or depression.  

My question is: Why?

Are we insufficiently capable of managing the repercussions of this pandemic that we knew was going to occur? Don't answer that, because obviously we are not up to the task at hand, specifically, preventing a slump or even collapse of the world economy without running up tremendous debts that will linger for decades. 

Again: Why?

I keep hearing these words bandied about: On Pause. The societies around the world are "on pause". The economies of the world, as an effect, are "on pause". At least, the people who are unemployed, who have been furloughed, laid off or otherwise removed from the benefits of a paycheck are "on pause." If we can put the people who would make the payments on pause, could we not also put the ones who would collect that money on pause also?

Why?


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Thomas
1  author  Thomas    one month ago

Just wondering aloud how we get ourselves into such states and cannot seem to find the way out of them when the answers are quite apparent.

 
 
 
igknorantzrulz
1.1  igknorantzrulz  replied to  Thomas @1    one month ago

Just wondering aloud how we get ourselves into such states and cannot seem to find the way out of them when the answers are quite apparent.

i wonder some times, 

and when the wind blows, i wind up lost with a wind up alarm clock ringing the dinner bell curve, that i dive straight and saw intwo

, due to my pear of iiiiz, like an 

apple in my 

i

 find myself

lost,

at the lost and

found

myself lost,

at the lost and

found, wear i war battle fatigued close, that opened up my thought process, and maid me hungry, for food, so i up N began a process where as i thawt, then bought, some food, for thought, and couldn't digest the reality of it all, so i stick figure N 8 what most couldn't stomach to digest,

that which what i never say N

jest n case, i over/under eat a 5 team parlay, i all ways try and begin with a process, 

put it in my food foe thought processor, and force feed like a buleemic smoking weed growing like grass roots, but from the Astro Turf Farm where they do harm more or less, to artificially enhance ones perception of reality, that i uniformly follow, cause i'm, a litre to the quart ship i christened with a Champagne  Super Nova SS ,

as i Rally Wheeled around the family with a pocket full of shells. along with Eddy's Father, who was a real Muther Fckr...

owe, eye c i mite have digressed, but it's watt i herd i due best, over and over, so take the under, where

my thoughts sore, but my throat thinks

before my mind blinks its' minds eye 

that turned blindly to sea how deep it could delve

oh yea, what was the thesis of this feces again,,,,?

let me get back to ya shortly, i've got bigger problems than any damn pandemic, my BEER is empty. 

 
 
 
FLYNAVY1
1.2  FLYNAVY1  replied to  Thomas @1    4 weeks ago

The golden rule baby!

"Those that have the gold, make the rules....!"

Who has more lobbyists..... ? Answer: corporations and the wealthy.

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
2  Perrie Halpern R.A.    one month ago

Human beings are incapable for the most part, to do the tough changes and always kick the can down the road, hoping it will be someone else's problem. The day comes and it kicks us in the butt and then we try to point at each other and put the blame on them. Humans are way too flawed to ever learn.

 
 
 
Thomas
2.1  author  Thomas  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @2    one month ago
Human beings are incapable for the most part...

You aren't getting cynical, are you? I try like hell not to be, but do occasionally find myself kvetching about something or the other. 

KIcking the can down the road is a time honored tradition as far as that goes, but we can never seem to kick it far enough. Seeking for someone or somewhere to place the blame is also a time honored tradition, but as with kicking the can, the results are not lasting, however good they may make one feel. 

Really, I am not looking to place any blame with this piece, just trying to get to some kind of understanding of the different arguments for and against and also any alternate ideas on how we could go through this pandemic and come out the other side not in a severe recession.

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
2.1.1  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  Thomas @2.1    one month ago

I guess I am kvetching, but I have been watching what has been going on across the US and what has been said here, and somehow, people just don't get that we are all in this together, despite regional differences. Viruses don't know from geopolitical boundaries, and so listening to people blame and complain about NY, as if this was our fault, well it gets old really quick. You and I have two different realities in this state and I doubt you feel any differently than I do. But explain that to someone in Georgia and they think we are nuts.

I'm not trying to place blame. I am taking about the human experience and my human experience is that we always act surprised when these things happen, despite the fact that we have been warned about it for a very long time. If you can explain the surprise, I would gladly listen. But even when faced with death, people are still in denial. 

 
 
 
Split Personality
2.1.2  Split Personality  replied to  Thomas @2.1    one month ago

On average the attention span of an adult has reportedly dropped from 12 seconds to 8 seconds thanks to social media, smart phones and the internet....

That presents a huge obstacle when we need 333 million people

just in this country

to think the same way and perform the same tasks.

Highly unlikely.

 
 
 
Thomas
2.1.3  author  Thomas  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @2.1.1    one month ago

Well then, Perrie, if the people are surprised or still in denial, how then to affect change? I would say that we know why they are that way: They have not been paying attention, but that is not necessarily the peoples fault. There are a multitude of distractions and competition for the small amount of time and money that most of us have is fierce. (Especially if your your mind and body run on Commodore 64 bandwidth while the rest of the world runs with their shiny new 5G iphones)

So....

When you imagine your personal best scenario society, what does it look like?  Or, perhaps, moving forward from the situation that we find ourselves in, what path could we take to move towards such a society? That question is large, I know, so concentrate on one tiny aspect and try to move through the hows and whats and all to where you would like to see it, then tell us about it. If you are stuck, well then tell me and I or another on here will try to help. 

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
2.1.4  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  Thomas @2.1.3    one month ago

Well, there are several issues that got us here. 

We never prepared for the worse, especially as a nation. Not with savings, not with health, not with warnings from our experts. Anything that becomes inconvenient, we push off. Also, I have to agree with the short attention span, but this has been going on for a long time, so I am not too sure if 2 seconds of attention span makes a big deal. 

I guess first, would be listening to our health care advisors and be ready to act when they say something is coming down the pike. Let's go there for a start.

 
 
 
Thomas
2.1.5  author  Thomas  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @2.1.4    one month ago

Ok, we'll start from there and move forward. Soooo, it seams we are looking for a way to make the important information stick around in our conscious thoughts long enough for some kind of change to the operating procedure of the public health system. Well, we are in luck, because sitting around with relations for weeks on end can be the memory to tie this to. Going forward, I think our healthcare professionals will have to yell less loudly and the people in government will pay more attention, at least here in the northeast. The trick is to codify the response across the nation. 

 
 
 
FLYNAVY1
2.1.6  FLYNAVY1  replied to  Thomas @2.1    4 weeks ago

I'm a Chess player, use to thinking ahead and planning moves to see the endgame.

There are so many moving pieces to this infection, that I can't seem to get any clarity on where we are going to end up.

One thing is for certain..... there are going to be wealthy people telling us which way to think right up to the point that everything breaks down.  Wish the sale of Kool-Aid was outlawed and more people would start thinking for themselves.  

 
 
 
FLYNAVY1
2.1.7  FLYNAVY1  replied to  Split Personality @2.1.2    4 weeks ago

I call it the Sesame Street phenomena.... five second burst of attention getting learning.  It yields a short attention span.

How many kids do you know these day put puzzles together, or build models, both of which that take patience and visual spacial reasoning?

 
 
 
The People's Fish, Still "Hand Of The Queen"
2.1.8  The People's Fish, Still "Hand Of The Queen"  replied to  FLYNAVY1 @2.1.6    4 weeks ago
Wish the sale of Kool-Aid was outlawed and more people would start thinking for themselves.  

Why would you want that? stupid people often die from drinking the koolaid making the world collectively smarter.

 
 
 
FLYNAVY1
2.1.9  FLYNAVY1  replied to  The People's Fish, Still "Hand Of The Queen" @2.1.8    4 weeks ago

The rise of nationalism and the strong man has happened across the globe.  The only reason that it happened is because individuals have stoked primal fears of xenophobia towards tribalism.   Divide and conquer is one of the oldest tricks in the playbook.  The weak minded can be counted on to always swallow the Kool-Aid, and they are never culled from the herd. 

 
 
 
MUVA
2.1.10  MUVA  replied to  FLYNAVY1 @2.1.9    4 weeks ago

[deleted]

 
 
 
Sparty On
2.1.11  Sparty On  replied to  FLYNAVY1 @2.1.9    4 weeks ago
rise of nationalism

That has absolutely nothing to do with my mindset right now.     To me it’s more about the narcissistic trend we seem to be going through.    Everybody has to get their own way or they are being picked on or abused.

People say they have no money but every room has a TV with an expensive cable plan, every child expects a car and a smart phone with an expensive data plan.    People are building house square footage they don’t need.    Weddings cost almost more than my first mortgage and somewhere along the line colleges have convinced all the youth they ALL need a college degree they likely will never use.    I could go on but personal accountability these days seems to be in short supply so it makes little difference

I just love it when I hear people that make good money complain about not having enough.    Those are the nimrods that are hoarding TP and Hand sanitizer right now.

We need to get back to the basics and learn to appreciate what we do have.  This whole pandemic sucks for us all but I gotta tell ya for me and mine it hasn’t been bad.    The worst part has been, and it really does suck bad, we haven’t been able to have any face time with two aging parents for going on two months.    That sucks hard, really hard.

No amount of money, TP or hand sanitizer can bring that back.

A little perspective.    Be happy with what you have, when you have it.    It could be much, much worse.

 
 
 
Freewill
2.1.12  Freewill  replied to  Sparty On @2.1.11    4 weeks ago
A little perspective.    Be happy with what you have, when you have it.    It could be much, much worse.

Amen to that!

 
 
 
Kavika
3  Kavika     one month ago

As you stated the pandemic was known but the only question was when will it hit. 

To that end, IMO, most humans do not want to face and accept bad news and we seem to think it won't happen, it won't be as bad as explained, it won't happen to me or the best of all I'll bury my head in the sand and not acknowledge it.

Just my thoughts

 
 
 
Thomas
3.1  author  Thomas  replied to  Kavika @3    one month ago

Thank you for your thoughts, Kavika.

Even if one does not want to face and accept bad news, bad news does happen and is eventually unavoidable to even the most staunch of deniers. So, how are we as a society going to deal with the reality of the situation? What will society look like on the other side of this pandemic? Is society the same in terms of its relation of people to money? Can this rupture of the exchange system generate a modification of the societal norms around the ideas of capital?   

 
 
 
FLYNAVY1
3.1.1  FLYNAVY1  replied to  Thomas @3.1    4 weeks ago

Things are going to look very different on the other side...... and I can't get a handle on the amount of pain we Americans are going to have to go through to get there.

 
 
 
MsAubrey (aka Ahyoka)
3.2  MsAubrey (aka Ahyoka)  replied to  Kavika @3    4 weeks ago

I agree Kavika. When I asked my friends on FB in JANUARY, "Is anyone else scared to death of this virus?," most replied with, "No. It's just you" or "It's just like the flu. What are you worried about?" Some of those people that commented in such a way are now the ones freaking out and some are still in denial and going to protests in Lansing. Several of my friends have lost someone they love to this virus now and it's finally sinking in that it's actually happening. It seems that people that aren't affected personally, don't take it seriously. I don't need to be personally affected by it to worry about the potential of doing so. 

I'm lucky enough to be able to work from home and still receive a regular paycheck. My husband lost his job; however, we lived on my paycheck alone for nearly 3 years, so it's not much of an adjustment for us. I realize that a large percentage of people are not that lucky. I realize that there's people that are looking at an empty refrigerator and empty cabinets, wondering how they're going to feed their families. However, that's what food pantries are for and that's what charities are for, but there are some that are too embarrassed to ask for the help they need. I've received charity once upon a time. It happens. Asking for help is something that many people just don't know how to do.

I say that as long as I'm not forced back into society before I'm ready, then let the people that are screaming for reopening go back out into society. I can still order my groceries through Instacart or do curbside pickup, which is what I have done long before COVID-19 hit the US and I can still work from home and keep my family safe. Michigan has closed school for the remainder of the year, so my kids are home. My husband lost his job, so he's home. I can make money still without going to the office and save money in car maintenance and gas for commuting, but still help support the economy from my couch. It's an interesting world we live in today.

 
 
 
Kavika
4  Kavika     one month ago

I believe that his pandemic is showing us the real gaps in the system. Health care being, IMO, one major area. 

How does one look on the other side of the pandemic? I believe that most people at the moment are very concerned not only about their well being but the financial disaster that they are facing. And for the moment probably not concerned or contemplating the financial disaster the local/state/federal governments are facing. This is when we'll be paying the piper.

Will it change/modify our attitude towards capitalism, hopefully, it will, in the end, provide a more well-balanced society in regards to the financial inequities that exist. 

 
 
 
Thomas
4.1  author  Thomas  replied to  Kavika @4    one month ago

Thank you, once again, for sharing your thoughts. 

You note healthcare as an area in which there exist "real gaps in the system." Not being obtuse, but what are these gaps that you perceive? How would you recommend that these gaps be filled? 

You ask how one looks at the other side of the pandemic. We can't with surety say exactly what it will look like, but we can get a general idea and plan accordingly. Also, if we have a conception of what we would like to see,what we want society to look like, we can take steps towards making society look more like we envision.

You say that you hope that society's attitude towards capitalism will take on a more well-balanced, less inequitable look. Could you perhaps be more specific and give an idea of what the society that fits that definition looks like? Perhaps you can't tell what it looks like, if so could you give an example of some of these inequities that exist and we could start exploring from there? 

 
 
 
Kavika
4.1.1  Kavika   replied to  Thomas @4.1    one month ago
You note healthcare as an area in which there exist "real gaps in the system." Not being obtuse, but what are these gaps that you perceive? How would you recommend that these gaps be filled? 

With the current system, we have millions with no coverage at all and many others with minimal coverage. To me, in a country with the wealth of the US that is an unacceptable situation. With this pandemic, the people that work for companies that employer-paid health care could/will see that coverage end for them. What is their alternative? Corba is way too expensive if you're unemployed or on minimum wage.  My solution is for both a private and public option so that everyone is covered. 

You say that you hope that society's attitude towards capitalism will take on a more well-balanced, less inequitable look. Could you perhaps be more specific and give an idea of what the society that fits that definition looks like? Perhaps you can't tell what it looks like, if so could you give an example of some of these inequities that exist and we could start exploring from there? 

I believe that the first thing to look at is the poverty rate, which for a country such as ours is unacceptable. The so-called wealth gap is real but I'm not advocating for a more socialist society but one that offers more opportunity and better wages for the minorities and those without the wealth/money to attend higher ed without going into debt for the rest of their lives. 

The unions built the middle class and I have no problem with seeing the union make a comeback along with US manufacturing. 

 
 
 
MsAubrey (aka Ahyoka)
4.1.2  MsAubrey (aka Ahyoka)  replied to  Kavika @4.1.1    4 weeks ago

This part I slightly disagree. Before Obama-care came into play, I was able to afford my $100 copay for an ER visit, but after Obama-care came into play, I received bills for the doctor I never saw of $240, an ambulance bill of $600 for a 1/4 mile ride, and $2200 for "ER space usage" when I was only there for about 45 minutes... but my cousin that was covered under Obama-care never had to pay a dime because at 34, didn't have a full-time job despite being very capable of working full time. My insurance rates went up immediately after Obama-care even though the company I work for covers the majority of the cost.

And as far as offering opportunities... I know that the city of Detroit has Union-led courses for those that live in the city at NO COST that teach people trades and they can take the journeyman's testing at the end of the courses for a mere $20. If someone can't scrounge up $20, there's a bigger problem. Just by walking around the neighborhood, one could find many returnables at $.10 ea.

I can't speak to those in other states or cities; I can only speak to what I know.

 
 
 
Kavika
4.1.3  Kavika   replied to  MsAubrey (aka Ahyoka) @4.1.2    4 weeks ago

What I was talking about was a private plan as many people have today and a pubic plan for those that don't have a private plan. That would seem to satisfy both sides of the coin.

I can't speak for Detroit but in many of the cities and rural areas that I'm familiar with there is a true lack of opportunities and with this pandamic there will be a hell of a lot less IMO.

 
 
 
Sparty On
4.1.4  Sparty On  replied to  MsAubrey (aka Ahyoka) @4.1.2    4 weeks ago

I can tell you that trade school are one of the better bargains out there.    Most trades work while they are going to school.     The cost for a journeyman’s education is minuscule compared to even some two year college degree s

Now college degree costs are truly out of control.    One wonders where all that inflated tuition is going.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
5  sandy-2021492    one month ago

I think we have a tendency to fear the danger we can see.  We can see a car coming at us, a house fire, a threatening person, an advancing army.  A microbe?  Nope.  We might even be afraid to get near a person who is visibly ill, but with coronavirus, they may not look ill until they're near death, if they ever have symptoms at all.

 
 
 
Thomas
5.1  author  Thomas  replied to  sandy-2021492 @5    one month ago

Thank you for commenting. 

What then do we need do to prevent the delayed to non-existent initial reactions in the future? Is it possible to plan for and make the consequences less severe? How do you think this might be done?

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
5.1.1  sandy-2021492  replied to  Thomas @5.1    one month ago
Is it possible to plan for and make the consequences less severe? How do you think this might be done?

I think it's possible, yes.  But I also think a lot of people won't like the measures we'd have to take, so I don't know if they'd be implemented.

Travel restrictions, for example.  I had no problem with restricting travel when it was clear that this virus was pretty serious.  But we didn't stop travel, and we didn't adequately test or isolate travelers.  We seemed to think that US citizens returning from China, for instance, were exempt from infection.  We should have done a lot more isolation and testing of returning travelers, and those processing them in customs should have had training and equipment to protect themselves.

Enforcement of social distancing by law enforcement officers, if necessary.  We've had in-person church services, protests, etc.  And even for those of us practicing social distancing, others can sometimes make it difficult.  Most times when I get groceries, at least one person, and often more, get way too close to me - within a foot or even touching, and certainly not the 6 feet we're supposed to try to maintain.  Some people don't seem to understand or care what social distancing is about, and foil the efforts of those of us who do.  Let police warn or even arrest those who defy orders against large gatherings, or who won't even do something so easy as stand on the little stickers marking 6-foot intervals in grocery store checkouts.

Maintaining supply chains and prevention of hoarding.  I'm talking PPE and basic necessities, like food.  It's easy to tell people to try to leave their houses as little as possible.  But when store shelves empty within an hour of being stocked, many people find themselves going shopping more often, and making more stops per trip, just to buy enough groceries to get them through a week or a few days.

 
 
 
Thomas
5.1.2  author  Thomas  replied to  sandy-2021492 @5.1.1    one month ago

I am sorry that I could not respond sooner.

So, you have some good ideas there. Let's explore some of them.

On the travel restrictions,do you think that there should be certain trigger points and criterion for determining when each level of these restrictions should occur? Should we err on the side of peoples health or the side of the economy? Personally, I think that we should favor the people for the economy is a construction of the people.

Enforcement of social distancing by law enforcement officers, if necessary.  We've had in-person church services, protests, etc.  And even for those of us practicing social distancing, others can sometimes make it difficult.

Here we are coming into the realm of the state constitutions and just what they allow for each emergency declaration. In most cases, I do not believe that the declaration of a state of emergency grants the authority to suspend the rights of assembly. However, I do not know this for a fact and it will require further study. If you would like to look into this point, feel free. What do you think the trigger point should be to access these restrictions on the right of assembly?

  Maintaining supply chains and prevention of hoarding.  I'm talking PPE and basic necessities, like food. 

How do you envision this happening? 

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
5.1.3  sandy-2021492  replied to  Thomas @5.1.2    4 weeks ago
On the travel restrictions,do you think that there should be certain trigger points and criterion for determining when each level of these restrictions should occur?

Most likely, and those should be determined by epidemiologists, dependent on an infection's severity and ease of transmission.  International travel would be restricted at a lower threshold than local travel.

Should we err on the side of peoples health or the side of the economy? Personally, I think that we should favor the people for the economy is a construction of the people.

I lean more toward erring on the side of health.  I think, though, that we can't forget the economy.  It may be a social construct, but it's our reality.  If we operate without regard for the economy, society may well cease to function.

What do you think the trigger point should be to access these restrictions on the right of assembly?

I imagine it would be difficult to establish one.  When a disease threatens the health of the public, including those members far removed from the protest/church service/etc., I think restrictions are easier to justify.  None of our rights are absolute.  We have the right to peaceful assembly; if we're harming others, especially non-participants, by way of contagion, I think we may well question whether assembly is peaceful.

How do you envision this happening? 

I think this is probably best achieved by business, either voluntarily or by mandate.  Limit amounts of in-demand items consumers can purchase - no filling your shopping cart with toilet paper or hand sanitizer. I'm in health care, and when suppliers knew how serious the situation was in China, they noticed hoarding by existing accounts, and a proliferation of new accounts buying large quantities of PPE. They limited the amount of PPE they'd sell to existing customers, and refused to sell to new customers.  They saw a problem looming, and took the initiative themselves to mitigate it.

 
 
 
cjcold
5.2  cjcold  replied to  sandy-2021492 @5    one month ago

Same with anthropogenic global warming. The frog in the slowly boiling pot of water. 

 
 
 
Thomas
5.2.2  author  Thomas  replied to  loki12 @5.2.1    one month ago

How about the person in the slowly boiling water.....

 
 
 
Larry Hampton
6  Larry Hampton    one month ago

There will come a point in our evolution where we will have no choice any longer. We will pass from our present adolescence into adulthood, or will be knocked back. We are NO different from any other life on this planet in this regards. Natural Law conquers all. This present crisis elaborates our disillusionment that we can control Nature. We have used the tools we have created from the raw materials found in our world, to both create and destroy. Can we use them to save ourselves? Good question.

We need a systemic change. Money is the ruler of our global society. Until that changes, no manner of planning, caring, good intentions or even, plenty, will cure our ills. Life itself, all life, needs to take precedence over money. 

as an example we have Americans waiting in lines for food, while we destroy tons of the stuff because of supply chain issues. 

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/apr/09/us-coronavirus-outbreak-agriculture-food-supply-waste

 
 
 
Thomas
6.1  author  Thomas  replied to  Larry Hampton @6    one month ago

Thank you, Larry, for commenting.

You say we need systemic change. How would you accomplish such change? Perhaps more importantly, what would these changes be and how would society be arranged around them to make the society maintain some cohesion of thought and ideals? I would posit that some amount of cohesion is necessary. Would you agree?

You mention supply chain issues. Do you have an idea how these could be addressed? 

 
 
 
Greg Jones
6.2  Greg Jones  replied to  Larry Hampton @6    one month ago
Money is the ruler of our global society. Until that changes, no manner of planning, caring, good intentions or even, plenty, will cure our ills. Life itself, all life, needs to take precedence over money. 

Easy to say, difficult to do or accomplish in the real world as we currently know it. What would we replace money and all that term implies with?

 
 
 
Thomas
6.2.1  author  Thomas  replied to  Greg Jones @6.2    one month ago

How about suspending capitalism for the duration of the emergency?

 
 
 
MUVA
6.2.2  MUVA  replied to  Thomas @6.2.1    4 weeks ago

No.

 
 
 
TᵢG
6.2.3  TᵢG  replied to  MUVA @6.2.2    4 weeks ago

Here is an example of what Thomas might have in mind.   When people are shut out of work they often lose their income or operate at a greatly reduced income.   Many banks today are suspending late fees, deferring payments etc.   That might be an example of suspending capitalism.   Another example, which is not in effect, is for credit card companies to do likewise and not gouge at 16% for people who are (stupidly or due to lack of choice) relying upon credit cards as if they were a line of credit.

Another more direct example would be a public company that has simply laid off 10% of its employees.   This is business as usual and, given the dynamics of our existing system, there are not many alternatives.   The company sheds costs (employees) to shore up its balance sheet (and stock value) while the laid off employees bear the burden of losing their livelihoods during a pandemic.   This illustrates the lopsided relationships that exist under our current system — one that is business-centric, not employee-centric.   In an employee-centric economic system the burden would be more distributed.   Like an insurance plan, the hardships (when they occur) are buffered by the distribution.   All employees, at all levels of compensation and power, tighten their belts, not just the expendables.

You are no doubt looking at this as a small business owner.   There is not much you can do in this regard; you have few tools with which to work.   If your business opportunities shut down and you have employees 'on the bench' you cannot carry them very long without seriously damaging your business.   That is the nature of our current system.  So the plight of the small business owner is noted.

Now, do you say 'no' to every alternative that would mitigate this situation?   Given nobody can possibly imagine every alternative, on what basis can one categorically state 'no'?   For example, unemployment insurance is part of our existing system.   Given the pandemic, do you find that to be a bad measure?   One change to our system might be to improve the extant unemployment insurance to provide a better safety net when the shit hits the fan.   Would you categorically say 'no' to something like that?

 
 
 
Thomas
6.2.4  author  Thomas  replied to  TᵢG @6.2.3    3 weeks ago

Actually, TiG, I was (am) advocating for the total suspension of monetary exchange.

A great deal of the world is closeted at home. A great number of the worlds businesses are shuttered. Why are they starting to open? Because the risk is gone? No! Because they have bills to pay. Everyone has bills to pay. So, as a consequence, all of these people who have been doing the right things to save up and watch their spending, well they might be , MIGHT be, all right.

But the people who were, for whatever reason, living from paycheck to paycheck... they are just screwed.

And when we get to the other side of this debacle, after who knows how many months extreme financial hardship, businesses that were once running will not be. People who worked at those businesses will be looking for work. People who owned those businesses will be looking for a way to rebuild, for money to try and start over. the governments around the world will have increased their debt load. This exact scenario will play out across the states. Across the nations.

Across the world. 

And why does it have to be this way? 

It has to be this way because we, us, you and I and everybody else, lacks sufficient imagination to keep it from happening. We are all so caught up in our own brain treadmills that we do not realize that we can simply step to the side. Oh my God, I have to pay my landlord, I have to get paid by work or else.... Or else what? The world is definitely not going to stop turning. The Sun will not stop shining. Weather will keep occurring. This virus that has us all in its grip, it does not care what we do. It will grow and multiply and die, regardless of whether we have the money to buy gas and groceries.

Push the button and turn it off

Not forever. just until we get to the other side of this global crisis.

There is absolutely no real reason why we cannot do this. Oh, I am sure that you and everyone else can think up scads of justifications why we cannot simply pause the global economy. But, if the alternative is global recession, why not? We can, by agreement, cease the medium of exchange without ceasing the exchange. Money is agreement solidified into actual currency. As we can see with the banking systems , it can be as ethereal as an electron flipping a bit on a microchip. Money is what we say it is, because we say it is. (It is the ultimate Trumpian dream.) Therefore, if we agree that we don't need it, we don't.

At least for a little while.

 
 
 
TᵢG
6.2.5  TᵢG  replied to  Thomas @6.2.4    3 weeks ago
Oh, I am sure that you and everyone else can think up scads of justifications why we cannot simply pause the global economy.

Let's just start with the basics:  the essential services.   When we turn things off, who will make the food, who will pick up the trash, who will provide the utilities?  

We certainly could quiesce financial organizations.   New cars, homes, clothing, etc. need not be built.   Vanity services, sports, art, entertainment, etc. need not be provided.   But I am still left with this question:  if we could handle the utterly enormous complexity of quiescing non-essential dimensions of the global economy, how do we pay people (and their organizations) to produce what is essential?   The supply chain for this goes all the way back to the acquisition and refinement of raw materials.    The essential dimensions are rather deep.   I do not see them working for free.

 
 
 
FLYNAVY1
6.3  FLYNAVY1  replied to  Larry Hampton @6    4 weeks ago

Your thinking along the same lines I have been over the last couple of decades.  As a species we have to learn to value something other than the accumulation of wealth and power.

I pay my bills with money, but I value knowledge above everything else. 

 
 
 
loki12
7  loki12    one month ago

I will proudly wear the cynic cloak, Why? People are inherently selfish aholes, it boils down to that, they are willing to take and sacrifice you, to protect themselves, the examples here show that, A large portion of people here say we need to stay at home until there is a vaccine, but in honesty what they are saying is they want themselves and THEIR family to stay home, but you better pick up their garbage, deliver their mail, and bring them food, because your family are expendable.  
That in a nutshell is why we don’t prepare, because we are willing to sacrifice some so our lives aren’t.

 
 
 
Thomas
7.1  author  Thomas  replied to  loki12 @7    one month ago

You surely are cynical. That is ok. Are you not People too?

People are frightened, and because they are frightened and unsure of the future, there is a tendency to retreat to known conditions, to circle the wagons so to speak.. I would not say that this is necessarily a thought out reaction, but more instinctual, so I think that you are conflating two issues when you say, "they want themselves and THEIR family to stay home, but you better pick up their garbage, deliver their mail, and bring them food, because your family are expendable." Certainly, there may be some who hold these feelings, but to generalize and attribute them across all people would, in my opinion, be a mistake of the first order. For instance, I don't believe that most people are happy to be stuck at home and think that they would much rather be doing something. I know this to be true with several of my friends and colleagues. 

Thank you for commenting.

 
 
 
loki12
7.1.1  loki12  replied to  Thomas @7.1    one month ago
Are you not People too?

I can point you out to people who will give you serious debate on that, but that's a subject for a different day. My cynicism comes from life experiences and actually taking people at their words, when they don't think you are listening, Their was a comment on trumps immigration ban he just signed, (which is toothless) their immediate reaction, be prepared to pay more for fruits and vegetables,  ie, it's okay to take advantage of brown people who will work for less if I don't have to pay more. Or Americans are to lazy to do that work, I'm sure not, but it's obvious they aren't willing to work hard for pay, I did it growing up, we had to toss the hay bales into the flatbed, and then unload them into the barn. worked at a fish hatchery feeding the breeders, sorting eggs etc. We were in ranch country, so not picking vegetables, but the work was physical none the less.

"Certainly, there may be some who hold these feelings, but to generalize and attribute them across all people would, in my opinion, be a mistake of the first order. For instance, I don't believe that most people are happy to be stuck at home and think that they would much rather be doing something. I know this to be true with several of my friends and colleagues."

Read the articles on the states that haven't issued stay at home orders, or those that are lifting them. it sure seems like they would rather stay at home safe, and belittle anyone who has a different view. Or it may be as simple as blatant partisanship, which again is selfish, because they need to win for their team, which ever team that is. and the good of all be damned.

 
 
 
MsAubrey (aka Ahyoka)
7.1.2  MsAubrey (aka Ahyoka)  replied to  loki12 @7.1.1    4 weeks ago

In Lansing MI, people held protests because they're hurting for money [among some stupid things too], while others are upset by those potentially spreading the virus. It's a mixed bag all over the country. I'd rather stay home, but I can work from home [work in the IT dept.], but I also understand those that can't. I have friends that can't work from home, but are okay with being home for a little while longer. I have other friends that can't work from home but have great desire to return to work despite getting unemployment. So, your statements are not necessarily correct, but that may be just what you're personally seeing.

 
 
 
loki12
7.1.3  loki12  replied to  MsAubrey (aka Ahyoka) @7.1.2    4 weeks ago

It is what i'm personally seeing, and reading right here, we have people insisting that trump should have locked down the entire country, except of course for those people who would serve them, we also have people belittling the governor of SD and Georgia for their plans to reopen. But these are the same people going to grocery stores and ordering takeout, Either all lives matter or they don't. It just seems to some. some lives matter more than others, how much do you think they would howl if the grocery stores and restaurants closed, completely? or their trash service stopped? 

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
7.1.4  sandy-2021492  replied to  loki12 @7.1.3    4 weeks ago
we also have people belittling the governor of SD and Georgia for their plans to reopen. But these are the same people going to grocery stores and ordering takeout,

I don't know that anybody advocated for shutting down everything, loki.  It's always been more a matter of necessity, of risks versus benefits.  People can't live without food and medications, for example, so we couldn't realistically have closed grocery stores.  Restaurants are another story, but those have only remained open with extreme changes to their business model for the time being, if they're open at all.  Same with trash pickup - we'd be overrun with vermin in short order, if that ended.  Sanitation is essential.

But tattoos?  Hairdressers?  Massage parlours?  Yeah, we can live without those.  And IMO, it's not right to risk the health of your grocery store cashier because you (generic "you") caught Covid-19 while getting a tattoo, and passed it on to him.

IOW, it's one thing to risk catching and spreading the virus doing something you have to do to stay alive and healthy.  It's something entirely different to risk catching and spreading it engaging in something that's just fun or vanity.

 
 
 
loki12
7.1.5  loki12  replied to  sandy-2021492 @7.1.4    4 weeks ago

Of course not, it’s obvious that some are expendable, like liquor store employees and Pizza Hut delivery, but Sherry at the cut and Dye needs to be protected, there will always be someone who thinks this makes sense.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
7.1.6  sandy-2021492  replied to  loki12 @7.1.5    4 weeks ago

I personally see no good reason for liquor stores to be open.  Here in my own state, I believe that was a financial decision.  Liquor stores are operated by the state, and the state receive the proceeds.

But, keeping Sherry from getting up close and personal with her clients reduces her chance of catching the virus and giving it to the Pizza Hut delivery guy when he hands her her pizza.  In fact, many restaurants that deliver are doing contactless delivery - pay online or by phone with your credit/debit card, and they'll leave your food on your front porch with no need for the two of you to meet at all.  It's a pretty low-risk transaction for all involved. 

Sherry at the Cut and Dye can't rework my layers or cover my grays without touching me.  And while I don't need pizza specifically, I do need food to live.  My mirror tells me that my hair could use a trim and my roots "did", but I won't die from it.

 
 
 
loki12
7.1.7  loki12  replied to  sandy-2021492 @7.1.6    4 weeks ago

My point is it’s about choices, obviously the government and many people feel some people are expendable while others aren’t, grocery stores a full of people touching the credit card machine, doors, gas nozzles. But you cannot get your hair cut?

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
7.1.8  sandy-2021492  replied to  loki12 @7.1.7    4 weeks ago

Nobody is saying people are expendable.  They're recognizing that people need food.  What is your solution for feeding people, loki?

 
 
 
Freedom Warrior
7.1.9  Freedom Warrior  replied to  loki12 @7.1.7    4 weeks ago

Here we have a dim witted left POS by the name of Lorena Gonzalez that has already screwed the independent contractor community and now wants to require everyone to wear a mask outside. That should get interesting in the surf. 

I’m thinking we should call them masskholes.

 
 
 
loki12
7.1.10  loki12  replied to  sandy-2021492 @7.1.8    4 weeks ago

Let them buy food, get their hair cut, make their own personal choices, do you really trust the government on who gets to live? Because they are deciding who is expendable now.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
7.1.11  sandy-2021492  replied to  loki12 @7.1.10    4 weeks ago

So, because government recognizes that everybody needs food, now you have decided that the owners of Classic Cuts get to decide that their employee hairdressers are expendable?  You're taking the decision of who's "expendable" (which you seem unwilling to differentiate from essential - why do so many people insist on making up their own definitions for words?) and placing it in the hands of employers who may or may not give a damn about their employees' health.

You do recognize that food and sanitation are actually essential to life, and that haircuts aren't, don't you, loki?  And that being capable of understanding that isn't the same as calling anybody "expendable"?  I only ask because from your comments, you're as willing to risk lives to provide haircuts (nonessential) as to provide food (essential), and that just seems a bit...wrong.  Needs versus wants, loki.

 
 
 
loki12
7.1.12  loki12  replied to  sandy-2021492 @7.1.11    4 weeks ago

It’s bullshit Sandy, arbitrary bullshit, liquor stores equal need? Restaurants equal need? Why aren’t gas stations pay at the pump only? So you can get chips and soda? Does that equal need? Gun stores? Sporting goods? Keep defending this arbitrary bull crap, I’ll just laugh at it. 

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
7.1.13  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  loki12 @7.1.12    4 weeks ago

Loki,

Your comment to Sandy is meaningless. You declare that something is meaningless arbitrarily without backing up your claims or even attempting to explain how you came to that conclusion. Then you finish with a taunt that "I’ll just laugh at it. ". When are you going to do more than just throw spitballs at other members' comments,  in the hope that they will lose the argument because they will be angry enough?

 
 
 
loki12
7.1.14  loki12  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @7.1.13    4 weeks ago

I laid my arguments out through several posts, the fact you refuse to see it isn’t my fault, and nowhere did I indicate that I was laughing at Sandy, I’m laughing at the arbitrary way that essential is defined. Why are some lives more valuable than others Perrie? Yes food is essential, but why should someone have to risk their life providing it for you? Is your life more valuable than theirs? Is anybody’s? Do your think death is worth 15 dollars an hour?

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
7.1.15  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  loki12 @7.1.14    4 weeks ago

I read the whole thread and while you were civil to Thomas and Ms. Aubrey, you went right to quips with Sandy. She offered you a 3 paragraph thoughtful post and you responded with 1 sentence guessing at what she was thinking and continued that way, and hence why I took the time to ask you what I did. You say that you are not laughing at Sandy yet this is what you wrote:

Keep defending this arbitrary bull crap, I’ll just laugh at it. 

So, if you didn't mean it that way, it sure doesn't read that way.

Anyway, I am going to end it here as I don't want this to go all meta on Thomas' article. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
7.1.16  TᵢG  replied to  loki12 @7.1.14    4 weeks ago

A key theme in your argument is that the government has deemed certain people expendable.   Sandy, in contrast, has been trying to encourage you to consider a more realistic view which is that the government is cutting back on non-essential services.   The government is not saying that grocery clerks are expendable but barbers are not.   Rather it is saying that some services are essential to society during this crisis.

As a test, would you be in favor of the government shutting down all grocery stores, hardware stores,  trash services, utilities, trucking, etc.?   To keep those services operating, the employees must be on the job and thus run a risk of exposure.  

 
 
 
loki12
7.1.17  loki12  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @7.1.15    4 weeks ago

I will explain that simply, she was defending the government’s definition of essential, I earlier mentioned liquor stores which she agreed wasn’t essential, that was an obvious one, and yet she continued to defend it, I said if she wanted to defend it, even though it is obviously arbitrary, fine, I will laugh at it, because there is now rhyme or reason, take her explanation of liquor stores, government revenue is more important than someone’s life? But The people who own their own hair shop can’t?

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
7.1.18  sandy-2021492  replied to  loki12 @7.1.12    4 weeks ago
liquor stores equal need?

Where did I say that?

It's telling that you have to accuse me of defending that which I have actually opposed when I said

I personally see no good reason for liquor stores to be open.

It seems you either do not believe there is a difference between essential and nonessential services, or you are just arguing for the sake of arguing.  Perhaps it's a bit of both.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
7.1.19  sandy-2021492  replied to  loki12 @7.1.17    4 weeks ago
yet she continued to defend it,

Where?  Quote my defense of liquor stores being open.

 
 
 
loki12
7.1.20  loki12  replied to  TᵢG @7.1.16    4 weeks ago

Defend liquor stores and gun shops as being essential, even sporting goods

 
 
 
loki12
7.1.21  loki12  replied to  sandy-2021492 @7.1.19    4 weeks ago

The essential workers as defined by the “government” I specifically said you didn’t think they were essential, but said the government got revenue from them as an explanation, the only conclusion can be the government values money over lives.

 
 
 
loki12
7.1.22  loki12  replied to  sandy-2021492 @7.1.18    4 weeks ago

Sandy, unless you are the government, I’m not accusing you of anything other than supporting them, you seem to be defending their actions concerning essential employee’s, and in the same breath say that some aren’t essential, I’m pointing out it is arbitrary and makes no sense, states that have no lockdowns have lower mortality rates. So it appears essential isn’t necessarily safer.

 
 
 
TᵢG
7.1.23  TᵢG  replied to  loki12 @7.1.20    4 weeks ago

Why do you ask me to defend that which I have not proposed as essential?   I have not stated that the government (federal and collectively via the states) is executing a perfect strategy.   My point is that Sandy was trying to get you to recognize that the focus by government is on keeping people away from each other and a critical way to accomplish that is to stop non-essential services.

Why they have not closed liquor stores, etc. is a question I cannot answer.   But that was not the point.

The point is that the government is not deeming non-essential people but rather non-essential services.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
7.1.24  sandy-2021492  replied to  loki12 @7.1.21    4 weeks ago

Did I say I agree with that decision?  No.  I specifically said I didn't.  You choose to believe that I have defended a decision with which I specifically said I disagree.

You introduce a false dichotomy, loki.  It's either "well, if people can buy food, then open it all up" or "close it down, let the trash pile up, no food unless you grow your own" with nothing in between.  Most of us recognize that we need to strike a balance. 

Yes, food, sanitation, utilities, and healthcare are essential services.  Within those essential services, some are more essential than others - grocery stores more than restaurants, for instance, and emergency medical treatment more than routine screenings.  That is why restaurants have changed their business model for the time being, as have healthcare facilities.  They're open, in a modified manner.

Is it really that difficult to acknowledge that people need food and want haircuts?

 
 
 
loki12
7.1.25  loki12  replied to  TᵢG @7.1.23    4 weeks ago

That is exactly the point, the government deciding who is essential. I have no interest in continuing with you. Have a good night.

 
 
 
TᵢG
7.1.26  TᵢG  replied to  loki12 @7.1.25    4 weeks ago
That is exactly the point, the government deciding who is essential

You are not reading what I am writing.   It is not about the people it is about the services.   Non-essential services, not non-essential people.

I have no interest in continuing with you.

Understandable.

 
 
 
loki12
7.1.27  loki12  replied to  sandy-2021492 @7.1.24    4 weeks ago

Is it really that difficult to understand that the government chooses that grocery store workers are expendable but hair stylists and there customers can’t decide for themselves? If they didn’t arbitrarily pick and choose who could be open, there may have been a defense for it, Lowes is essential?

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
7.1.28  sandy-2021492  replied to  loki12 @7.1.27    4 weeks ago
Is it really that difficult to understand that the government chooses that grocery store workers are expendable but hair stylists and there customers can’t decide for themselves?

Government isn't making anybody work, loki.  Government is saying that food is more essential than haircuts, so grocery stores are allowed to be open, while hair salons are not.

As far as Lowe's being essential - what will you do if your washing machine breaks?  Go to the laundromat?  I'd rather buy a new washer than sit in a laundromat with a group of people whose Covid-19 status I don't know.  If you have a plumbing problem, are you going to just stop flushing toilets or washing your hands?  Or does the availability of plumbing supplies help maintain sanitation?  And if you have decided that groceries aren't essential, well, I'm gonna need to expand my garden, and maybe build a chicken coop.

 
 
 
loki12
7.1.29  loki12  replied to  sandy-2021492 @7.1.28    4 weeks ago
Government isn't making anybody work, loki.  Government is saying that food is more essential than haircuts

Sigh.............I and you accuse me of arguing for arguments sake, so the food worker or Nurse, or liquor store clerk, who decides they don't want to work because of safety concerns what happens to them?......you can't collect unemployment if you quit. or get fired for cause. so the governments choice....work or go on welfare because you aren't getting unemployment. at least not in my state. 

and isn't it wonderful for you that you can afford a new washer, when over half the country lives pay check to pay check,  Not everyone can fix there own plumbing, are plumbers now essential? electricians? what about lawn maintenance? and yet people who want to go to work can't so cowards can feel safe hiding at home while government sacrifice others? Awesome that you have that much faith in the morons who weren't prepared for this. 

This is the last comment I will make on this, we have a different of opinion on who we can trust, I don't trust trump to make decisions for my life and I sure as shit wouldn't trust any governor whose mortality rate is above 3 either, they have fundamentally failed in their jobs. But i do trust the people i do business with, or else i wouldn't be doing business with them. 

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
7.1.30  sandy-2021492  replied to  loki12 @7.1.29    4 weeks ago
so the food worker or Nurse, or liquor store clerk, who decides they don't want to work because of safety concerns what happens to them?......you can't collect unemployment if you quit. or get fired for cause. so the governments choice....work or go on welfare because you aren't getting unemployment. at least not in my state. 

That's the consequence for everyone, if you want to go back to business as usual during a pandemic.  Including those who are providing nonessential services.

and isn't it wonderful for you that you can afford a new washer, when over half the country lives pay check to pay check

It would be a stretch at the moment, actually.  I'm dipping into my personal savings to keep both myself and my closed-by-mandate business afloat.

Not everyone can fix there own plumbing, are plumbers now essential? electricians?

Yes, those are essential services, unless you happen to have an outhouse and are willing to haul and heat water over a bonfire for bathing and cooking.

what about lawn maintenance?

I have concerns about lawn maintenance workers.  I believe they can work safely - there is very little reason for them to stay close to each other while outdoors.  I think most should reconsider how they get to their job sites - not 4 guys in one truck.

Awesome that you have that much faith in the morons who weren't prepared for this. 

Again with the straw men.  I have repeatedly stated that I don't agree with all of the various state governments' decisions, including some in my own state.  But that doesn't mean we should throw out the baby with the bathwater and all get our hair cut and go to Disney World right now.  

 
 
 
Freedom Warrior
7.1.31  Freedom Warrior  replied to  loki12 @7.1.29    4 weeks ago

I got your back on this one.  It's incredible to me that anyone would engage in such intellectual dishonesty to attack your fully rational position regarding the wholly inconsistent manner in which the government has attended to the lockdown of our economy.

Somebody really needs to do an analysis of why those defending such draconian approaches are predominantly left wing.   Although I recognize the Groupthink aspects of many of the sheeple who fall in line with the stay-at-home mantra, it's generally repulsive to me on an intellectual basis.

 
 
 
TᵢG
7.1.32  TᵢG  replied to  Freedom Warrior @7.1.31    4 weeks ago
... attack your fully rational position regarding the wholly inconsistent manner in which the government has attended to the lockdown of our economy

Nobody has suggested that the government response has been consistent.   

The disagreement is on whether the government is considering certain people expendable and others not.   Sandy (and I) are noting that the government is cutting down on what it considers non-essential services.   Services, not people.

There is no claim made that the government is doing a perfect job or that all of their collective decisions makes sense or that the effects are consistent.   This should be clear to anyone who is actually trying to understand what has been written.

 
 
 
TᵢG
7.1.33  TᵢG  replied to  sandy-2021492 @7.1.30    4 weeks ago
Again with the straw men. 

It seems to often go this way when a position is shown to be incorrect.   No graceful, 'you have a point';  instead out come the obvious (and futile) intellectually dishonest tactics.

 
 
 
Paula Bartholomew
7.1.34  Paula Bartholomew  replied to  sandy-2021492 @7.1.4    4 weeks ago
Hairdressers
When this is over, you will be able tell who self quarantined for a long time.  The messed up self haircuts will be a dead give away.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
7.1.35  sandy-2021492  replied to  Freedom Warrior @7.1.31    4 weeks ago
such intellectual dishonesty to attack your fully rational position regarding the wholly inconsistent manner in which the government has attended to the lockdown of our economy.

It is intellectual dishonesty to refuse to acknowledge that I have noted the inconsistency.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
7.1.36  sandy-2021492  replied to  Paula Bartholomew @7.1.34    4 weeks ago

I would never dare cut my own hair.  Tried trimming my bangs in high school.  Did you know that curly hair ends up WAY shorter than it looks while you're cutting it?  Lesson learned.

 
 
 
Freedom Warrior
7.1.37  Freedom Warrior  replied to  TᵢG @7.1.32    4 weeks ago

[Deleted]

Therefore I don't read them. Hopefully that will help going forward

 
 
 
loki12
7.1.38  loki12  replied to  Freedom Warrior @7.1.37    4 weeks ago

[deleted]

 
 
 
Split Personality
7.1.39  Split Personality  replied to  TᵢG @7.1.32    4 weeks ago
This should be clear to anyone who is actually trying to understand what has been written.

And therein lies the problem.

 
 
 
Freedom Warrior
7.1.40  Freedom Warrior  replied to  Freedom Warrior @7.1.37    4 weeks ago

You may want to check my ignored list.  And by the way, when is somebody going to explain why I am not allowed to express the reason for ignoring someone?

 
 
 
Freewill
7.1.41  Freewill  replied to  Freedom Warrior @7.1.40    4 weeks ago
And by the way, when is somebody going to explain why I am not allowed to express the reason for ignoring someone?

One is free to have any reason one wishes for ignoring someone, but one can do that without being disrespectful or insulting.

 
 
 
Freedom Warrior
7.1.42  Freedom Warrior  replied to  Freewill @7.1.41    4 weeks ago

[deleted]

 
 
 
Freedom Warrior
7.1.43  Freedom Warrior  replied to  loki12 @7.1.38    4 weeks ago

According to some folks, being considered non-essential is rather insulting.  Wonder if they have communicated that en masse to government officials. 

Could it be grounds for libel? jrSmiley_82_smiley_image.gif

 
 
 
Freewill
7.1.44  Freewill  replied to  Freedom Warrior @7.1.42    4 weeks ago
Since you are not going to be serious

I'm as serious as a heart attack about this FW.  You can dislike a comment and explain why in a civil manner, but when you add a personal insult in with your point, it becomes a problem and a CoC violation.

I will pass on further communication with you

Might be best if I'm not successful in trying to reason with you.

As far as the libel and hypocrisy issue, I will likely agree with you on the issue of similar charges being leveled against Trump or other politicians or Supreme Court nominees.  What I don't agree with is the attempt to use that argument to personally attack or impugn the character of someone, like saying that they are supporting a rapist.  If you see similar comments where folks make similar unsupported comments about Trump and then use that to impugn your character or others, please flag it and I will address.  

 
 
 
Dulay
8  Dulay    one month ago

A Forbes article linked a study related this very subject. I've only scanned it but intend to read it thoroughly later today. Here's the link:

Pandemics Depress the Economy, Public Health Interventions Do Not: Evidence from the 1918 Flu

https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/Papers.cfm?abstract_id=3561560

 
 
 
Thomas
8.1  author  Thomas  replied to  Dulay @8    one month ago

Thanks for the link. I will look at it and respond when I can.

 
 
 
Thomas
8.2  author  Thomas  replied to  Dulay @8    one month ago

Interesting. The Abstract from the Paper:

Abstract

What are the economic consequences of an influenza pandemic? And given the pandemic, what are the economic costs and benefits of non-pharmaceutical interventions (NPI)? Using geographic variation in mortality during the 1918 Flu Pandemic in the U.S., we find that more exposed areas experience a sharp and persistent decline in economic activity. The estimates imply that the pandemic reduced manufacturing output by 18%. The downturn is driven by both supply and demand-side channels. Further, building on findings from the epidemiology literature establishing that NPIs decrease influenza mortality, we use variation in the timing and intensity of NPIs across U.S. cities to study their economic effects. We find that cities that intervened earlier and more aggressively do not perform worse and, if anything, grow faster after the pandemic is over. Our findings thus indicate that NPIs not only lower mortality; they may also mitigate the adverse economic consequences of a pandemic.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
10  Nerm_L    one month ago

We know a devastating hurricane or typhoon will hit the United States; we don't know when or where.  We know a large earthquake will affect the United States; we don't know when or where.  We know a large asteroid will strike the planet; we don't know when or where.

So, what do we really know?

We know every human dies; we don't know when or where.  What do we really know?  Should we live our lives planning for our own death every day because we know it's going to happen?

We can make a million predictions and one of them will be correct; we don't know which one.  What do we really know?

Hindsight is a result of experience, not knowledge.  We only know because we have experienced what has happened.  While it's easy to talk about knowledge, the reality is we are comparing experience to a guess.  Predicting the future isn't knowledge; we really don't know the future.  

 
 
 
Thomas
10.1  author  Thomas  replied to  Nerm_L @10    one month ago

Very fatalistic views.  Lets explore some of them.

We know a devastating hurricane or typhoon will hit the United States; we don't know when or where.

That isn't exactly true. We don't know the specific timing or landfall of future hurricanes, but we do know that in North America they are statistically probable between May and November from the Gulf Coast to Nova Scotia. They typhoons occur on the west coast, less frequently. As a country, we have devoted a good deal of money to the prediction of and preparation for just such an occurrence. Surely you can't be suggesting that these have been unwise investments?

 We know a large earthquake will affect the United States; we don't know when or where

We know that one is likely to occur, we know that one is likely to happen. We have spent years and untold amounts of money on studies of earthquakes, how to engineer for them, preparedness for them, civil planning around what to do when one occurs... Likewise seemingly very important social and governmental investments.

We know a large asteroid will strike the planet; we don't know when or where.

Even this scenario is in the disaster preparedness quiver of NASA:

For more than 20 years, NASA and its international partners have been  scanning  the skies for NEOs, which are asteroids and comets that orbit the Sun and come within 30 million miles (50 million kilometers) of Earth’s orbit. International groups, such as NASA’s   Planetary Defense Coordination Office   (PDCO), the European Space Agency’s Space Situational Awareness-NEO Segment, and the International Asteroid Warning Network (IAWN) have made better communication of the hazards posed by NEOs a top priority.

You Said: " So, what do we really know? "

Well, we knew about January that something really bad was occuring in Wuhan , China. I can recall as the month progressed hearing and reading many reports that this was really bad . On the 12th of January China shared the genetic sequence of the novel coronavirus (Why would they do that? I wonder) and on the 14th a case was reported in Thailand. Just so you know, while we were fiddling, China was obfuscating, and the healthcare community was running around trying to get somebody to pay attention to what was happening. On the 30th of January, two days after a team from the WHO went into China on what was supposed to be a ten day fact finding mission, the WHO declared Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) . We all know where it goes from there. When China closed down the City of Wuhan, that closing should have been the call to action to the world health authorities. 

Enough of that though. Do you actually have something constructive to add? If you do, by all means, continue to post. If all you intend to do is say that there is no use planning for any eventuality, why that is just plain silly.
 

 
 
 
Nerm_L
10.1.1  Nerm_L  replied to  Thomas @10.1    one month ago
Well, we knew about January that something really bad was occuring in Wuhan , China. I can recall as the month progressed hearing and reading many reports that this was really bad . On the 12th of January China shared the genetic sequence of the novel coronavirus (Why would they do that? I wonder) and on the 14th a case was reported in Thailand. Just so you know, while we were fiddling, China was obfuscating, and the healthcare community was running around trying to get somebody to pay attention to what was happening. On the 30th of January, two days after a team from the WHO went into China on what was supposed to be a ten day fact finding mission, the WHO declared Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) . We all know where it goes from there. When China closed down the City of Wuhan, that closing should have been the call to action to the world health authorities. 

Gee, that's swell.  But according to the provided WHO timeline, the WHO did not reach consensus until Jan. 30 that the outbreak in Wuhan constituted a public health emergency of international concern.

Here is another timeline published by CNN:  Coronavirus Outbreak Timeline Fast Facts

The original information out of China concerned an outbreak of pneumonia cases of unknown cause that was not SARS or MERS.  The WHO first published information for technical and public health community on Jan. 5 and specifically advised against any travel or trade restrictions on China.  The cause of the outbreak was confirmed as a new coronavirus on Jan. 7.  The first fatality in China attributed to the new coronavirus was reported on Jan. 11.  Jan. 20 the NIH announced it is working on a vaccine against the new coronavirus.  Jan. 22 the WHO convened an emergency committee which concluded there wasn't enough data available to declare a public health emergency.  Jan. 30 the WHO declares the coronavirus outbreak a puble health emergency of international concern.  Jan. 31 President Trump placed restrictions on travel to/from China.

So, what did we really know?  

Something bad is happening around the world on a regular basis.  The United States recorded 289 suspected and probable cases of coronavirus SARS in 38 states during the 2003 outbreak .  The WHO and US public health agencies followed the plan to monitor reports and perform contact tracing.  That was adequate for the 2003 outbreak.

The WHO and US public health agencies followed the same plan for the current coronavirus outbreak.  But the current SARS-CoV-2 has proven to be more virulent that the 2003 SARS-CoV virus. 

The United States wasn't any slower to respond than the World Health Organization.  In fact the WHO was providing mixed signals until the end of January.  

The reality is that the experts didn't know because there wasn't enough data.  And if the experts don't know then what are mere mortals supposed to do?

Now we know from experience that SARS-CoV-2 is really bad.  But in January everything was guesswork, speculation, and predictions; that's not knowledge.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
10.2  Nerm_L  replied to  Nerm_L @10    one month ago
Enough of that though. Do you actually have something constructive to add? If you do, by all means, continue to post. If all you intend to do is say that there is no use planning for any eventuality, why that is just plain sill

Today's guidelines and plan haven't changed over the last 100 years.  The guidelines and plan were developed by medical experts 100 years ago.  The guidelines and the plan used to be part of basic health education in public schools.

Cover your coughs and sneezes.  Wash your hands often.  Keep surfaces clean.  Avoid close contact with sick people.  Stay home if you are sick.  Wear a face mask.

So, who didn't follow the guidelines and the plan?

 
 
 
Thomas
10.2.1  author  Thomas  replied to  Nerm_L @10.2    one month ago
"So, who didn't follow the guidelines and the plan?"

Probably the people who did not realize that there was anything wrong with them.

They hadn't been to China. No one they knew had been to China. The Chinese authorities were not indicating that it was even communicable at first, even though there is a high likelihood that they knew that it was. It took real boots on the ground to alert the WHO, but we all should have known when the case turned up in Thailand.

 So, moving forward, are you going to change any behaviors.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
10.2.2  Nerm_L  replied to  Thomas @10.2.1    4 weeks ago
Probably the people who did not realize that there was anything wrong with them.

Controlling infectious disease requires everyone follow the guidelines and plan all the time.  The role of public health education is to make everyone aware of the guidelines and train them to follow the guidelines.

The guidelines and plan aren't something that sits on the shelf awaiting a pandemic.  The guidelines are intended to be normal daily practice for everyone.  That has been the normal for the last 100 years; it isn't a new normal.

Cover your coughs and sneezes.  Wash your hands often.  Keep surfaces clean.  Avoid close contact with sick people.  Stay home if you are sick.  Wear a face mask.

They hadn't been to China. No one they knew had been to China. The Chinese authorities were not indicating that it was even communicable at first, even though there is a high likelihood that they knew that it was. It took real boots on the ground to alert the WHO, but we all should have known when the case turned up in Thailand.

But the public guidelines are designed to control spread of infectious disease where people live.  Isolating the source of the infectious disease does not change the public guidelines or plans for controlling spread of infectious disease.

We don't know when the SARS-CoV-2 virus began spreading to other countries.  The SARS-CoV-2 virus began spreading during flu season.  It's quite likely that doctors didn't recognize that patients with pneumonia symptoms consistent with flu were infected with a new virus.  The virus may well have been spreading last November or earlier well before anyone recognized it was a new virus.  People may have been dying from COVID-19 before it was recognized as a new disease.  We simply don't know.

The public guidelines and plan were intended to address that circumstance.  

So, moving forward, are you going to change any behaviors.

I have changed my behavior very little.  I was trained to follow the guidelines.  I carry a handkerchief which can be used to cover coughs and sneezes and used as a face mask.  Although the special purpose face masks are more convenient so I do carry one of them now.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
10.2.3  sandy-2021492  replied to  Nerm_L @10.2.2    4 weeks ago
The guidelines are intended to be normal daily practice for everyone.

Setting aside the fact that it is not normal daily practice to wear masks, what happens when these are not enough?  When it's been demonstrated that a virus spreads easily without direct contact at conversational distances, do we just continue as we are, or do we need to modify our behavior to reduce social contact, limit trips outside our homes, etc.?

Of course we should be washing our hands, coughing into a tissue or our elbows, and keeping surfaces clean.  That might suffice at times when pathogen transmission is low.  But it may not suffice during a pandemic of an especially infectious virus.

 
 
 
Thomas
10.2.4  author  Thomas  replied to  Nerm_L @10.2.2    4 weeks ago

I doubt very much that you wore a facemask or remaned six feet away from persons as a matter of course while conducting normal daily tasks before the pandemic. There was no apparent reason to. 

The fact remains that asymptomatic people have the ability to shed the virus when they had no reason to believe that they had anything wrong with them. Even following the hygiene protocol, they still dramatically increased the risk level of others around them.  

 
 
 
Paula Bartholomew
10.3  Paula Bartholomew  replied to  Nerm_L @10    4 weeks ago

I didn't realize that the US ever had a typhoon problem.

 
 
 
Thomas
10.3.1  author  Thomas  replied to  Paula Bartholomew @10.3    4 weeks ago

Well, typhoons occur in the Pacific, hurricanes in the Atlantic... think Hawaii

 
 
 
Paula Bartholomew
10.3.2  Paula Bartholomew  replied to  Thomas @10.3.1    4 weeks ago

I forgot about HI.

 
 
 
Thomas
10.3.3  author  Thomas  replied to  Paula Bartholomew @10.3.2    4 weeks ago

Easy to do. In grad school, in a bar, I was displaying my geography skills by drawing a map of the united states. Everything fit together perfectly, until someone said, "Where is Nevadaon your map?" Doh! Face-palm

 
 
 
Kathleen
11  Kathleen    one month ago

My reasoning about this is we always thought that something like this could happen but we did not take it seriously enough. We have watched movies and read stories about a bad virus but never thought it would really happen. We have more confidence in humans then we should be giving credit for. I think people are naive and selfish in our society and they don’t plan very well either.  We basically thought that something like this could never happen.  That’s a big reason why we were not prepared. I am hoping that our children’s and grandchildren’s future will be better prepared.

 
 
 
Greg Jones
12  Greg Jones    one month ago

In reality, this corona virus will probably end up killing about the same number of people as the season flu does. The victims who succumb to it are overwhelmingly elderly and have underlying conditions. Yes we should have been better prepared and had all the medical chips in a row before this happened, but all the US governments have done for decades is to kick the can down the road as has been previously mentioned. And that includes the present one...mistakes were made and stupid things said.

But in the race to mitigate the threat and find a cure, millions of American families lives and livelihoods have been ruined, some perhaps permanently. Who knows at this point how severe the ongoing fallout from these draconian shutdowns will be and how long lasting the affect on the nation will persist.

 
 
 
Split Personality
12.1  Split Personality  replied to  Greg Jones @12    one month ago
The victims who succumb to it are overwhelmingly elderly and have underlying conditions.

and African American or American Indian...

But in the race to mitigate the threat and find a cure, millions of American families lives and livelihoods have been ruined, some perhaps permanently.

Nonsense, everything will rebound except the national debt, which was unnecessary IMHO

 
 
 
MUVA
12.1.2  MUVA  replied to  Split Personality @12.1    one month ago

Really every business will remain intact and no one will have financial problems and  Trump believe the virus will go poof in the heat ,you guys are two peas in a pod the eternal optimist a site to behold.  

 
 
 
Split Personality
12.1.3  Split Personality  replied to    one month ago
Don't forget all those immigrants without documentation and the hordes of homeless who gravitate to the big cites

Do you have statistics or a link to that ?

 
 
 
Split Personality
12.1.5  Split Personality  replied to  MUVA @12.1.2    4 weeks ago

Has your business suffered?

 
 
 
bugsy
12.2  bugsy  replied to  Greg Jones @12    one month ago

I would be interested to see if anyone does a study later to see if those that regularly received the regular flu vaccine actually contracted the corona virus, or at least in a far reduced capacity. I understand the flu vaccine fights different aspects than the COVID, but maybe there is something in it that suppresses symptoms to the point where you either feel like you have a minor cold, or just be asymptomatic.

In healthcare service facilities, it is nearly mandatory to get a yearly flu vaccine. If you don't want to get one, then most facilities require you to wear a face mask for the duration of flu season while you are in the facility. I'm curious if there is any correlation of health care workers who did not get the vaccine came down with the virus at a much higher rate than those that did.

 
 
 
Ender
13  Ender    one month ago

Hello Thomas. A quick reference, if writing a piece or even a long response, a lot of people write it on an offsite platform, something on their computer like note pad. Then copy and paste the body to the site. I have written long, what I thought, well thought out response and hit a wrong button .. poof.

As far as economy. I don't trust the way those are reported or calculated. Any data can be manipulated to show a narrative. I don't think they show true cost of goods or true inflation.

I don't like or trust the idea that we have had the best economy in years, the best unemployment in years, when true statistics show the economic divide is growing. We rely on low paying service sector jobs that depend on other lower paid service sector employees to spend what little money they do have to keep the cycle going. Basically we hire people to sell useless garbage or useless services and encourage others to do the same. 

Government is not prepared to handle such things because Imo it is not run by our elected officials. It is run by what the 1%, corporations want or lobby to get.

I don't like the idea that the stock market is any indicator of economy because I consider it nothing but pieces of paper that some put a value on. Unrealistic and unreliable except for those at the top that can manipulate their so called worth.

We are also getting back to a point where most people are in debt to a point where if something did happen they would lose it all. Not many true home owners or people paying off homes.

Sorry if this seems like ramblings, just thoughts going through me head. I guess my point would be there is not really much we can do. The wealthy will be fine, the poor will be poor and it goes on and on. 

Nothing can or will change when people do not want to think for themselves and rely on talking heads for their opinions.

 
 
 
Thomas
13.1  author  Thomas  replied to  Ender @13    one month ago

Thank you, Ender, for commenting.

As far as economy. I don't trust the way those are reported or calculated. Any data can be manipulated to show a narrative. I don't think they show true cost of goods or true inflation.

What steps do you think could be taken to clarify the process? It is, I think, standardized in the dataa used and the methods of calculation, so we can get an idea of the trueness even if the actual number is wrong.

I don't like or trust the idea that we have had the best economy in years, the best unemployment in years, when true statistics show the economic divide is growing. We rely on low paying service sector jobs that depend on other lower paid service sector employees to spend what little money they do have to keep the cycle going. Basically we hire people to sell useless garbage or useless services and encourage others to do the same.

How, then, would you change this? Specifically, how would you alter this jobs scenario? 

Government is not prepared to handle such things because Imo it is not run by our elected officials. It is run by what the 1%, corporations want or lobby to get.

So what would you like to see instead?

I don't like the idea that the stock market is any indicator of economy because I consider it nothing but pieces of paper that some put a value on. Unrealistic and unreliable except for those at the top that can manipulate their so called worth.

You realize that money, currency could be described in a similar fashion? What alternate way would you arrange things so that we could track how the economy is doing?

We are also getting back to a point where most people are in debt to a point where if something did happen they would lose it all. Not many true home owners or people paying off homes.

So how do you see us addressing this?

 
 
 
Ender
13.1.1  Ender  replied to  Thomas @13.1    one month ago

Actually I don't think there is any way to address it/change things.

In times past when people had enough they would rise up.

Now they just pit us against each other and we oblige instead of directing our ire in the direction it should go..

It is, I think, standardized in the dataa used and the methods of calculation, so we can get an idea of the trueness even if the actual number is wrong

It is about as right as six degrees of separation on how they calculate unemployment.

How certain items or necessities are not calculated into inflation.

 
 
 
Sparty On
14  Sparty On    one month ago

To me it’s a relatively easy concept.   A simple risk/reward analysis.    The concept is simple.    Getting agreement on how much of either is acceptable is the problem.

Taking little risk means less deaths but kicks the can even further down the road.    Taking more risk potentially causes more death but speeds the process up.   Certainly not an easy analysis to get agreement on but a simple concept just the same.

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
14.1  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  Sparty On @14    one month ago
A simple risk/reward analysis.    The concept is simple.    Getting agreement on how much of either is acceptable is the problem.

LOL, you are appealing to the accountant in me. But remember there is always a way to make those numbers you want. That is what cost accounting is all about. You are not wrong, but again human nature will always kick in.

Taking little risk means less deaths but kicks the can even further down the road.    Taking more risk potentially causes more death but speeds the process up.

And now the biology teacher kicks in. Viruses don't know from kicking down the road... in fact, they almost like it better if you did. Remember, their sole purpose on this planet is population control. The further we kick it down the road, the better they can do their job. Just think! We are helping them by buying more time for mutations! 

 
 
 
Sparty On
14.1.1  Sparty On  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @14.1    one month ago

I agree.    

The longer we all stay at home, the more economic damage is done, the longer it takes for everyone to catch the virus and gain a possible  immunity for following years.      The farther the can gets kicked down the road economically and medically.

There is no way around it.    It does no good to survive if everyone simply starves when it burns out.

 
 
 
MUVA
14.1.2  MUVA  replied to  Sparty On @14.1.1    one month ago

Not to mention all the health concerns going untreated like cancer,organ transplants  and  heart procedures and many more  the death toll from untreated med conditions could end up surpassing the virus deaths.

 
 
 
Freedom Warrior
14.2  Freedom Warrior  replied to  Sparty On @14    one month ago

Well your analysis and you’re thinking are definitely in the right place, what’s mostly missing from just about every public report we get now is any sort of rigorous evaluation of the relative costs associated with the type of catastrophic economic policies that are being implemented. 

And naturally I’ll have to go the extra step because of the stupidity level of a lot of other people (I.e. media, lefties etc.) that don’t understand that there is a human loss beyond the economic toll that is being created by these policies as well.

 
 
 
Split Personality
14.2.1  Split Personality  replied to  Freedom Warrior @14.2    one month ago
Well your analysis and you’re thinking are definitely in the right place, what’s mostly missing from just about every public report we get now is any sort of rigorous evaluation of the relative costs associated with the type of catastrophic economic policies that are being implemented

Agreed.

And naturally I’ll have to go the extra step because of the stupidity level of a lot of other people (I.e. media, lefties etc.) that don’t understand that there is a human loss beyond the economic toll that is being created by these policies as well.

It isn't the media or "lefties" implementing these polices, all of which should have been avoided by the only leadership that matters.

 
 
 
Thomas
14.2.3  author  Thomas  replied to  Freedom Warrior @14.2    one month ago

I would be interested in seeing some of those that confirm what you are saying.

 
 
 
Freedom Warrior
14.2.4  Freedom Warrior  replied to    one month ago

We all know they don’t have anything except misguided criticism designed to inflict maximum political damage of people that they dislike. The notion that they would take more appropriate action based on the nearly catastrophic advice they have promoted so far is beyond absurd. 

 
 
 
Thomas
14.2.5  author  Thomas  replied to  Freedom Warrior @14.2.4    one month ago

What constructive steps would you like to see occur in regards to your complaints? I don't mind you complaining, but if you have a complaint then lay it out specifically and with the corrective measures or way that you would like to see things done so that other people can discuss it.

 
 
 
igknorantzrulz
14.2.6  igknorantzrulz  replied to  Thomas @14.2.5    one month ago

wouldn't hold ones breath for anything constructive, but  fill your complaint department for sure.

 
 
 
dennis smith
14.2.7  dennis smith  replied to  Freedom Warrior @14.2.4    4 weeks ago

We all know they don’t have anything except misguided criticism designed to inflict maximum political damage of people that they dislike. The notion that they would take more appropriate action based on the nearly catastrophic advice they have promoted so far is beyond absurd.

The political divide between Repubs and Dems is a huge problem in America.

Independent voters seem to be the most likely to alter that divide. Unfortunately they only have two candidates to choose from. Perhaps an Independent party with a 3rd major candidate would begin getting politics back to working for the people instead of having the two major parties being so divisive can become a valid option.

 
 
 
Thomas
14.2.8  author  Thomas  replied to  dennis smith @14.2.7    4 weeks ago
The political divide between Repubs and Dems is a huge problem in America.

Personally, I would be happy if all political parties were banned. No parties, just candidates who rise on the merits of their positions.

 
 
 
TᵢG
14.2.9  TᵢG  replied to  Thomas @14.2.8    4 weeks ago

bullseye-clipart-dart-5.png

I have been expressing the very same sentiment for years.

 
 
 
dennis smith
14.2.10  dennis smith  replied to  Thomas @14.2.8    4 weeks ago

Agreed

 
 
 
JohnRussell
15  JohnRussell    one month ago

the future

002_0.jpg

 
 
 
igknorantzrulz
15.1  igknorantzrulz  replied to  JohnRussell @15    one month ago

From the Title, something came to mind:

Questions for those who like to think...

Seems we spend a lot of time talking to many who ARE like the Boy,

in the plastic bubble.

We tend to provide

Answers for those who DON"T like to think... 

.

It is amazing how dense some cro-magnum craniums truly are.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
16  JohnRussell    one month ago

Although it is something that appeals to Trump, which I am loathe to agree with, the best thing for the U.S. to do right now is spend whatever money is necessary to keep small businesses in business. 

The national debt is irrelevant.  We have to borrow from the future to keep the economy intact. We could double the national debt and it wouldnt matter. 

read

https://theconversation.com/why-the-22-trillion-national-debt-doesnt-matter-heres-what-you-should-worry-about-instead-111805

 
 
 
TᵢG
17  TᵢG    one month ago

One thing that remains true throughout history is that aristocracy runs the show.   Ownership is power.   Ownership by a few means those few can dramatically affect the many.   This ownership has taken many forms from early settlements (after the hunter / gatherer stage) to kingdoms and eventually to financial empires.  

Another truism is that people place a higher priority on (local,current) over more (global,distant) concerns.   What happens to one's immediate family now is far more important than what happens to society in general over time.   Those in control, being people, are susceptible to this behavior.   Thus we see our current crop of politicians making decisions that benefit themselves in the short term at the expense of their constituents over the long term.  

As long as we have the few calling the shots for the many, we will see benefit to the few at the expense of the many.   To expect altruism is, historically, unrealistic.

That established ...


The culture of worldwide society is one of conformance.   People naturally rely upon others to take care of things.   This is another aspect of (local, current).   People focus on their families and friends and spend far too little time thinking in terms of society over time.    This enables a minority of others the opportunity to provide short-term local benefits (e.g. jobs) in return for work that ultimately grows their base of power.   This seems like a very good trade-off but over time, when one looks at the big picture, this is detrimental to society as a whole.

You asked a great question: 

If we can put the people who would make the payments on pause, could we not also put the ones who would collect that money on pause also?

This pandemic has made it impossible for most to conduct business as usual.   Businesses, faced with a reduction in revenue, will typically cut costs.   Cutting costs means the loss of jobs.   The business effectively transfers its liabilities to its employees.   Jobs are cut, costs are brought more in line with demand and the business remains solvent.   Those laid-off and/or with reduced compensation and/or greater work are the ones truly bearing the burden.

There is no easy, quick solution to this.  This, as I noted, is how we have operated since before recorded history.   The solution, ultimately, is to evolve into a societal structure where economic power is distributed among an active, engaged demos.    In such a system, the economic consequence of a pandemic such as this would not be absorbed by those with low economic power and barely touch those with high economic power.   

Not in our lifetimes.

 
 
 
igknorantzrulz
17.1  igknorantzrulz  replied to  TᵢG @17    one month ago

Not in our lifetimes.

That seems to be a mighty big part of the problem.

Everyone thinks it can't happen, in 'their' lifetime.

Well, this Pandemic, DID, and because of our societies that do constantly kick the can down the road, many ,

have sore toes.

 
 
 
MUVA
17.2  MUVA  replied to  TᵢG @17    4 weeks ago

I hope never.

 
 
 
TᵢG
17.2.1  TᵢG  replied to  MUVA @17.2    4 weeks ago

You hope never for what, exactly?    I was describing a society which can deal with situations such as a pandemic without people losing their livelihoods.

 
 
 
Thomas
17.3  author  Thomas  replied to  TᵢG @17    4 weeks ago

Thank you for commenting, TiG.

I don't think that we can evolve quickly enough for this crisis.

This pandemic has spawned at least two problems and probably more. One of the problems is, of course, the fact that a great many people have become sick all at once. That is, in my opinion, the greater of the two basic problems. The lesser of the two problems is one that we have created for ourselves by virtue of our societies and have nonetheless thrown up our well wrung hands at and said, "We can do nothing to stop the financial ruin of many people and businesses! We cannot fix this Problem for it is too large and would sink all of our nations!" That is, quite simply put, poppycock. 

It is not that we cannot, it is that we, us, society, are unwilling to even conceive of taking the actions necessary to make this problems severity decrease to the point where it is no more.

You said," There is no easy, quick solution to this." I say," There is!" But as a culture and a society we have been so inured in the trappings of capitalist thought that we would rather plunge the world into another Great Depression than suspend our debt collections for a few months.

I come from New York, and I know the suspicion that everyone is out for themselves and damn the rest, and WTF are you tryin' ta pull? I get that. But I also see the possibility of making a positive change out of a dire circumstance and I see no better time than right now to do just that.

 
 
 
TᵢG
17.3.1  TᵢG  replied to  Thomas @17.3    4 weeks ago
I don't think that we can evolve quickly enough for this crisis.

Without a doubt we cannot.   The evolution that I see (if ever) will be generational.

You said," There is no easy, quick solution to this." I say," There is!" But as a culture and a society we have been so inured in the trappings of capitalist thought that we would rather plunge the world into another Great Depression than suspend our debt collections for a few months.

Suspending debt collections does not seem easy to accomplish nor would it address the full problem.   I can explain my position, but first I should hear what you have in mind.

 
 
 
Thomas
17.3.2  author  Thomas  replied to  TᵢG @17.3.1    4 weeks ago

Well, first off, let us define the situation in which we are presently mired. 

It is called capitalism with the golden egg being money. I can hear you laughing. OK, less hyperbolically.

We have millions of people without a paycheck or work. We have businesses closed or severely restricted in their ability to operate. We have Russia and the Saudis flooding the oil market at the same time as demand falls off a cliff. We have tankers parked off the coast waiting to unload because there is no demand charging $20 to 50K a day storage fees. We have Landlords who can't get paid because their tenants are out of work because they have children who can't go to school...

Or Musically:

We have the governments, around the world, going into Debt, to pay the businesses, to pay the workers, who stayed at home, from their jobs, to watch their young zooming and schooling and learning at home.... We have doctors and nurses to catch Covid, but we have no money to pay Amazon...Perhaps we're screwed..

(If you read that while thinking of "there was an old lady who swallowed a fly" it makes more sense.)

Sorry, it just seems so absurd to me that we think that we have an insurmountable problem. Commerce has been forced to a crawl because people have to remain separated to stop the spread of the virus. Everyone, worldwide, knows that this is the case. Everyone, worldwide is in the same boat because all of our economies are interwoven and the virus is on all continents except Antarctica. 

So, before I totally lose my mind, would you agree that that is a very basic (and not that Complete) summation of the Problem?

 
 
 
TᵢG
17.3.3  TᵢG  replied to  Thomas @17.3.2    4 weeks ago

I think that summarizes the problem nicely.   Further, I agree that a healthy system is one that is moving.   The forced (and necessary) isolation is atrophying our economic systems and of course is taking quite a heavy human toll.   Without money consumers cannot spend;  without consumers spending, the economy tanks in a vicious cycle.  So certainly I agree that it is important that consumers have the means to consume.   And, as a corollary, producers need to be free to produce (they need to be able to reopen 'shop' and go to work) to meet the demand.

My focus is on the word 'easy'.   I can appreciate 'easy' in the sense of conceptually easy to understand.   But I cannot appreciate it in the sense of easy to accomplish.   As an illustration, it is conceptually easy to envision a system where the major banks, credit card companies, insurance companies, auto credit companies, utilities, medical institutions, etc. all grant a refinancing of debt during the crisis wherein payments are dramatically reduced, interest charges are forgiven and no late penalties.   It is also conceptually easy to envision the granting of emergency credit to enable consumers with a compromised livelihood to continue to buy essentials.   Imagine the credit card companies (this will be difficult to suspend disbelief) offering low single digit or zero interest credit and increasing credit limits for a few months;  effectively granting a genuine line-of-credit that can be instantaneously realized by the super-majority of citizens.

But the challenges to accomplishing the above are not easily overcome.   Gaining cooperation is certainly not easy.   Even with said cooperation, one must deal with the equitable and effective distribution of benefits.   That involves means-testing and the myriad information and political complexities of just that element.   It also, crucially, involves fraud prevention, detection and resolution.

I think that given time it would be possible to formulate an emergency economic program that could substantially help people (and the system) weather a short term (i.e. less than a year) crisis like what we are experiencing.   But such a program for the USA would certainly be complex and a long-time coming.  IMO.

 
 
 
Thomas
17.3.4  author  Thomas  replied to  TᵢG @17.3.3    4 weeks ago

Thank you, TiG, for your well reasoned and carefully thought out post.

I came back up her and wrote this after the rest of the post. It appears that I am about to rant.

I appreciate the perception that this would be a very hard thing to do. It will be, unless we just do it. I know, you have to get everybody to agree on the what and the where and things have to be implemented... There is no time to ask permission. If we don't do it now, we will be mired in the false debt of nobody's fault or choosing. It does not need to occur in that fashion. But it probably will.

Who created the concept of money? Humans.

Who created the concept of exchange? Humans

Can we not see the evidence in front of our eyes that the economic systems we have in place, all of them, will not work in situations such as a pandemic because there is limited commerce? Why do we then cling to these models? How stupid are we? 

We invented money, but we cannot control it? Why?

I contend that we can control money and do control money, but that control rests in the hands of the few (a.k.a. the "rich") and it is those few who will not release control. (They probably don't trust us lesser individuals with to much of it) These people, these individuals and entities, who have more than they could ever possibly want or need, do not care about the poor except to remove even more money from them.. The controllers of the money are to blame for all of the economic fallout from this pandemic because they cannot relinquish that control for just a little while, no matter the cost to the common man. That is travesty.

What makes money the end all and be all in situations like this? Why?

There are people worried about AI taking over everything... money has already done that. Everything has to be accounted for in the massive quid pro quo, even if the system breaks under certain conditions, conditions like are occurring right now. So, instead of suspending the system momentarily, we let it grind people and businesses to dust so the system can be maintained. That is fucking bullshit.

If you see someone in need, give them what they need or connect them with someone who can. Facilitate the transaction.

PPE is a great example of how the system we have does not work under these conditions. One of the most important things to have, a mask, maybe gloves or some hand sanitizer, when you find them they are outrageously expensive. We need this stuff to live, and somebody knows that, if we are able, we will pay. But that is if we are able. There are quite a few who are not able, and that is where the true problem lies.

What really really frosts my cookies though is that you can be damn sure that some hyper-small group of people out there among the uber wealthy is going to be licking up all of those cheap stocks out there and when we get to the other side of this, as we will, they are going to be holding onto a box of everything while the rest of us of lesser means have to lick their figurative balls and be happy for the privilege. You think the wealth distribution curve is wacked now...

Sorry. I don't know what came over me. I will get back in line for da'man ball-licking thing so I can get my paycheck and go do my plebe thing and send my money back to da'man.

 
 
 
igknorantzrulz
17.3.5  igknorantzrulz  replied to  Thomas @17.3.4    4 weeks ago
What really really frosts my cookies though is that you can be damn sure that some hyper-small group of people out there among the uber wealthy is going to be licking up all of those cheap stocks out there and when we get to the other side of this, as we will, they are going to be holding onto a box of everything while the rest of us of lesser means have to lick their figurative balls and be happy for the privilege. You think the wealth distribution curve is wacked now...

"and the sick stay poor", as the uber Rich, just want, get, and will grab MORE, like Trump and 'pussy' they/we, just let em'.

.

interesting, thought provocativetation your seeds do plant in the minds of this sub-set of an IGNORANT NATION ALL messed & dressed up, and no where or one to go/blow in many thinking individuals a weigh too heavy a wait, to lift those with out iiii'z and never wish 2 C

watt i've herd, should be relatively easy four about all, accept me a quarter of the time as i won't change n 2 dimes and one cut in half, doesn't make five census 

to an unpopular notion wiped on like a Corona Lotion on the Sandy Beech, wear like apples, Sponges Bobbed smell fishy, and out of reach,

cuz like that plastic bubble, some minds R impossible to reach

a round is squarely owed

asz all deserve to get Blown

up like a bombshell, that exploded over US

all the while      Happy Ending Style

.

 
 
 
The People's Fish, Still "Hand Of The Queen"
18  The People's Fish, Still "Hand Of The Queen"    4 weeks ago

This is the beginning of the Alien Invasion. The Covid-19 simply hatches their spawn in our genetics. Soon they will come to earth and force us to labor for them. We won't be able to resist.

I still can't believe i missed my flight on July 23, 1995. I should be there with the rest of the unics with Adidas on my feetis.

 
 
 
Freedom Warrior
18.1  Freedom Warrior  replied to  The People's Fish, Still "Hand Of The Queen" @18    4 weeks ago

All hail Hale Bop.

 
 
 
Thomas
18.1.1  author  Thomas  replied to  Freedom Warrior @18.1    4 weeks ago

Heee heeee

 
 
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