No Hush Money Can Make It Go Away
There are certain things that money can’t buy. Some people say that money can’t buy you happiness. The Beatles said money can’t buy you love. Ayn Rand said, “Money is only a tool. It will take you wherever you wish, but it will not replace you as the driver.” On the other hand, Warren Buffet suggests, “Only buy something that you’d be perfectly happy to hold if the market shuts down for ten years.” And that brings us to our present moment.
I totally get Donald Trump. I have worked for many multi-millionaires and a couple of billionaires in my life and they all had two things in common. They loved a great meal and always left the table before the bill came. Trump will do the same thing with America. He will leave office, hopefully sooner rather than later, and hand a giant bill to our children and grandchildren. If you are young, you will be paying for Donald Trump’s mistakes your whole life.
Regular readers of this blog know that I hardly say anything nice about Donald Trump, but here goes. COVID-19 was not caused by our president. Whether you believe his diatribes or not, this pandemic could have started in any country. The common belief that the coronavirus started in Wuhan, China may have cultural overtones, but you cannot blame a whole race of people or one country for this disaster. You cannot impugn Trump, Obama, Bush or any US President for this creepy little germ. In fact, if COVID is Trump’s fault, wouldn’t we just arrest him, put him in jail and throw away the key?
It’s not his fault that we have another plague running around the world and bringing the financial markets to their knees, but what he didn’t do from day one must be analyzed because it’s important to our grandchildren. They shouldn’t be afraid to live. Donald Trump will die well before we figure out a way to end the spread of future viruses. We must have a vaccine to protect us from each future mishap between the animal and human world.
This corona-calamity has brought a new reality. We now have “social distancing” to learn and do. There are signs telling us where to stand in the grocery store. Most people where I live are not following the one-way aisles plan. I guess better signage is needed to fully instill this new abnormal.
The liberal media-types use the term “rage tweeting” to describe what the President of the United States does in his spare time. WHAT? During a global pandemic the president has spare time? He seems to be in a never-ending war with anyone who says he has no idea what he is doing. Why so much rage, Mr. President? Get a shrink.
I am sick of the words, “new normal” and “unprecedented.” First, anything that is new can’t be normal until it’s been around for a while. Donald Trump has brought the word unprecedented to new levels of trending every day. The term means “never done or known before.” We hear the President say, “No one knew this was possible,” as his copout for not knowing about the coming pandemic and his inaction at the beginning of the fight. If he were a boxer, he would have been knocked out cold in March.
More terms are popping into our lexicon, like “herd immunity” and “modeling.” If you ever spent time on a farm you know that when one of the cows gets sick you move that one bovine away from the rest of the herd. Herd immunity doesn’t always work. For a farmer or rancher, if you sacrifice some of the herd while the others get beyond the ailment you are losing money. Full-grown cows can cost between $4,000 to $5,000. Do you remember “Bovine spongiform encephalopathy?” It was better known as “mad cow disease” and farmers had to kill every cow that came down with it. It was highly contagious and destroyed the animals’ central nervous systems. Some believe it was caused by feeding beef to cows. They aren’t cannibals, they are cows. People shouldn’t eat bats and cows should be vegetarian. Got it?
The idea of “modeling” is not new to the scientific community. We use modeling to predict where hurricanes will make land. We use modeling to track where people shop and determine where a new mall should be built. Fashion designers use modeling to sell their designs. Sorry, I just had to write that. Did you laugh? Here’s the important point, though. Modeling is not reality. It’s an estimate or prediction based on all the known data at the time the model is created.
The scientists and doctors of the COVID -19 Task Force once told us that we could have 250,000 deaths. Then they changed their model and predicted we could keep deaths from the coronavirus to below 60,000. Soon that was revised to say the death toll would be larger. Yesterday, the model was recalculated because many states are reopening. Scientists now say that as many as 134,000 Americans will die by June. So, why then should we be taking the risk of opening states right now? I guess the White House thinks opening is worth loss of life. This president thinks the economy will quickly and magically pop big numbers as a result. I’m willing to lay a wager that won’t happen.
People like Putin, Xi, Kim and Trump think they are in charge. They are not. Each one of them will lie to look good. China kept COVID-19 a secret for as long as they could. Putin, in the middle of taking full dictator control of Russia, had to call off his coup d’état because of the coronavirus. Kim Jong-Un probably contracted the virus but kept his discomfort from the world. Trump tried to talk the virus out of coming here. What a pitiful, naïve fool to think his words are that powerful. These boisterous leaders are just mortal men with agendas and misdirection.
Putin, Xi, Kim and Trump view people simply as numbers or statistics. No head of a country can hold the grief of every death in their heart, but it would be better if they attempted to express more empathy during this tragedy with its great loss of life. Numbers are used in science and stock markets, and if you don’t know MATH, you don’t know JACK. Some countries teach math to every child, but because we are in this global pandemic we are now forced to teach adults how math works with respect to percentages of death, percentage of chance of getting the virus and the like.
I surely hope our US State Governors, will keep a body count during their foolish quests to “open the economy.” As former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie said on Monday of this week, politicians should all admit, “people will have to die” to open the malls and entertainment. Perhaps he sees this like Sophie’s Choice. You know, older people’s lives for money. Thanks, Chris. You can take your family back to the beach now. Maybe Trump will make you ambassador to Wuhan.
Two Books For Your Stay-at-Home