Patient readers, a comment on comments, supplementing what Yves said here on informational hygiene. Before you press “Post Comment,” please consider the cascading effects your comment can cause, and the effect such cascades can have on moderators, who may end up having to rip out entire threads, a cumbersome, error-prone, and extremely irritating process. Comments that cause cascades tend to be ill-informed, politically motivated without being deft or knowledgeable, or (sometimes) simple shit-stirring, as if NC were Facebook or Reddit. It isn’t.
The Climate Crisis Will Be Just as Shockingly Abrupt The New Republic
You Need To Listen To This Leading COVID-19 Expert From South Korea (video) ASIAN BOSS. Professor Kim Woo-joo from Korea University Guro Hospital. In Korean, with subtitles (very clear). Kim says “re-activation” is possible.
On reinfection (dk). Thread:
If you are hearing about #covid19 “reinfections” in Asia, I can offer you my take as a virologist. The best explanation for what we’re seeing is likely due to three things…
— Peter Kolchinsky (@PeterKolchinsky) March 28, 2020
Shorter: The tests are sensitive not just to the virus but to DNA (and RNA?) in the environment, some of which is from patients having smashed the virus to bits successfully.
Why are there so few coronavirus infections in Singapore’s health workers? South China Morning Post
* * *Potential treatment:
‘Let hospitals decide,’ experts warn, as chloroquine hype triggers rush on pharmacies France24 (3/26), France sanctions use of chloroquine for certain patients with coronavirus France24 (3/27), and US regulator gives anti-malaria drugs emergency approval to treat coronavirus France24 (3/30).
Coronavirus: 9 things to know about chloroquine The Africa Report. Good summary of the drug’s history.
* * *Materiel shortages:
Inside the start of the great virus airlift Axios (nvl).
“Absolutely Mission Impossible” Der Speigel (Re Silc).
The U.S. Tried to Build a New Fleet of Ventilators. The Mission Failed. NYT. A must read. This is very much “sabotage” as Veblen would have understood it: “a deliberate restriction of the productivity of capital and labor in order to keep prices and profits higher.”
‘Swamp Creatures’ Attack Effort To Make Medicines American Again The American Conservative. More sabotage.
* * *Spread:
Fauci says US could have ‘millions’ of coronavirus cases and over 100,000 deaths The Hill. Bernanke: “At this juncture, however, the impact on the broader economy and financial markets of the problems in the subprime market seems likely to be contained. In particular, mortgages to prime borrowers and fixed-rate mortgages to all classes of borrowers continue to perform well, with low rates of delinquency.” Plus ça change….
How coronavirus mutated and eight strains raced around the world after initial outbreak in China as global cases top 660,000 and deaths hit 30,847 Daily Mail. NextStrain.org finally hits the Daily Mail. Good explainer for the layperson, though.
The Selfish Revelers Rod Dreher, The American Conservative. Dreher is Dreher, but: “Christian friends, I am not a proselytizer, but if your church or tradition is not teaching you how to orient yourself towards bearing suffering…. then it is all but useless, and will chewed up by the dragon that has us in its jaws. I’m not kidding.”
Darwin Awards (1):
Hey, Charlotte citizens, Come on! Take this pandemic seriously! Your selfishness is putting everyone at risk. https://t.co/Ala6pZ0mgZ?
— Marilyn Marks #StayHome (@MarilynRMarks1) March 29, 2020
Darwin Awards (2):
California to residents: Outdoor activities are A-OK during lockdown! But not near anyone. And not on a hiking path. Actually, stay home. https://t.co/C5ooUap26x
— wsj (@WSJ) March 29, 2020
Darwin Awards (3): FLORIDA CHURCH PACKED WITH WORSHIPERS … Pastor Shuns Social Distancing TMZ. The Shincheonji Church of Jesus? What’s that?
* * *Economic effects:
Longer-run economic consequences of pandemics? Oscar Jorda, Sanjay R. Singh, and lan M. Taylor (PDF). From the abstract:
How do major pandemics affect economic activity in the medium to longer term? Is it consistent with what economic theory prescribes? Since these are rare events, historical evidence over many centuries is required. We study rates of return on assets using a dataset stretching back to the 14th century, focusing on 12 major pandemics where more than 100,000 people died. In addition, we include major armed conflicts resulting in a similarly large death toll. Significant macroeconomic after-effects of the pandemics persist for about 40 years, with real rates of return substantially depressed. In contrast, we find that wars have no such effect, indeed the opposite. This is consistent with the destruction of capital that happens in wars, but not in pandemics. Using more sparse data, we find real wages somewhat elevated following pandemics. The findings are consistent with pandemics inducing labor scarcity and/or a shift to greater precautionary savings.
* * *State-level reponse:
A natural experiment:
Curious about COVID-19 stats in GA & NC, states where I work & stay. Both have approx. 10.5 million people.
GA ha 2,651 cases, 80 deaths.
NC has 1, 105 cases, 6 deaths
Both reported first cases 3/3/20.
Has there been report on scientific/reporting reason for the difference? pic.twitter.com/Ao1asRbiPZ
— Marilyn Marks #StayHome (@MarilynRMarks1) March 29, 2020
* * *Political response:
Never get high on your own supply:
The #CARESAct is nothing short of an act of legislative jujitsu. Republicans presented a corporate-focused plan, and Democrats flipped it around and delivered expansions to unemployment insurance, support for small businesses, and so much more. #FamiliesFirst #TRMS pic.twitter.com/7xKLP8S7xd
— Nancy Pelosi (@SpeakerPelosi) March 28, 2020
Liberal Democracy’s Advantage in Addressing COVID-19 RealClearPolitics
Coronavirus stimulus lets struggling Americans tap retirement accounts early Los Angeles Times. Oh good.
* * *Corporate response:
Private equity eyes industries crippled by coronavirus: ‘They have been waiting for this’ CNBC. Because of course.
Why Didn’t We Test Our Trade’s ‘Antifragility’ Before COVID-19? The American Conservative
Coronavirus: “Agribusiness Would Risk Millions Of Deaths.” (interview) Rob Wallace, Marx21 (BK). Wallace is author of Big Farms Make Big Flu, recommended by Yasha Levine.
* * *Remedies and ameliorations:
How to get groceries and take out food using sterile technique (Furzy Mouse). The glitter analogy is good:
NOTE: The author says SARS-COV-2 lasts “one hour” on cardboard in the first minute or so, but I’m sure that’s whatever a videographer calls a typo for one day. With Amazon’s next-day shipping, it looks to me like the cardboard in your package is likely to be fine (one day); it’s the plastic bubble-wrap to watch out for (two to three days). Don’t let the kids pop it!
Astrophysicist gets magnets stuck up nose while inventing coronavirus device Guardian. Don’t dunk on them. This is how science progresses!
China and Huawei propose reinvention of the internet FT. Here is the “proposal“, which the FT calls a standard. It doesn’t look like an international standard to me; what on earth can “strategic transformation” possibly mean, in standards terms? Which throws this into the “power play by non-technical people” bucket for me, which is pretty much where the FT comes out anyhow. (The proposal assumes robot cars will be a thing, for example.)
Black-clad men hurl petrol bombs at Hong Kong police station South China Morning Post
Centre orders quarantine camps for migrant workers The Economic Times (J-LS).
UPDATES: New employees could be sworn in on FaceTime Federal Times
Media Silent as Poll Workers Contract Covid-19 at Primaries That DNC, Biden Campaign Claimed Were Safe FAIR. The tweet I saw from the Sanders campaign said that voting was a personal decision; Sanders himself said that postponing the primaries would be a good idea. The Biden campaign, by contrast, actively encouraged voting, against CDC advice to avoid gatherings larger than 50, and (via spokesperson Simone Sanders) on national television. One might wish that the distinction between the approaches taken by the campaigns was more crisp (IMNSHO, Sanders should have issued a full-throated call for the primaries to be postponed) but it is real. The savage irony, of course, is that Biden’s base is older, hence more likely to suffer from life-threatening co-morbidities. Poll workers, too, skew old.
This Documentary Will Show You Just How Fragile Our Democracy Really Is Time. Vulnerable to “state actors.” Never domestic actors! Never, never, never!
Joe Biden coronavirus ad praises Ronald Reagan, seemingly forgetting his handling of the AIDS crisis killed thousands Pink News. Cool, because with the coming condom shortage, we’ll have an HIV spike.
Big Brother Is Watching You Watch
Real ID Deadline Delayed Until Late 2021 Because of Coronavirus NYT. That’s a damn shame.
Police State Watch
Someone at Rikers gave my cell # to others & for a couple of days I’ve been getting calls from people whose loved ones are there. They’ve all said some variation of the same thing — the people there need us to hear what is happening to them. They have asked me to share. THREAD/
— female astronaut suit with pockets (@mk_esq) March 29, 2020
Imperial Collapse Watch
The Staggering Collapse Of U.S. Intelligence On The Coronavirus Scott Ritter, The American Conservative. I hate the headline — this is news? — but there’s a tiny nugget of bureaucratic gold: Search on “Infectious Disease Risk Assessment” (and don’t go CT, or we’ll whack you). This is another ugly loose end, like the loose end of not knowing the name of the contractor that screwed up the CDC’s reagents.
Bailouts for the Rich, the Virus for the Rest of Us Counterpunch (GF). Everything’s going according to plan!
From fishing rods to fans: the fight is on to save our crafting skills Guardian. Like, ya know, machine tools.
Antidote du jour (via):
Bonus antidote (CW):
CW writes: “While working in SE Texas I paddled the creeks in the more remote areas of the big thicket. I’m an old river rat. This is where I went to get away from the world. I made some videos in 2017 before I was transferred out after the hurricane. They are (virtual) rides through walls of vegetation and downed trees jammed up on the hard bends and strewn about on the banks and in the beds of the creeks.” There are said to be herons. The video itself is peaceful and mesmerizing.
See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here