It’s Saturday and time for Biscuit’s truly bad coronavirus ideas of the week. Unfortunately, Biscuit is basking in his notoriety and tried to negotiate for compensation to use his likeness. I overcame this by including his friend Nindy, who is willing to do this service for free. Nindy is more interested in social consciousness than science though, so her commentaries tend to be more “biting.” Together I think they make a good pair!
1) Hoarding food. Toilet paper was bad enough but now people are hoarding food. This is related to sporadic reports of food shortages due to coronavirus infected workers. Of course, these reports also have been exaggerated on the news shows, but if Bill and Melinda Gates need to stockpile food as has been reported, the rest of us have already starved to death.
2) Televising your illness. Chris Cuomo seemed to think it was a good idea to continue to televise himself from his basement while he had coronavirus infection. The fact that we got to listen to him whine about it for a couple of weeks wore mighty thin, and then he infected his wife who was caring for him. If you’re sick stay home and take care of yourself; don’t inflict your frustration on the rest of the country.
3) Arguing with Tony. It’s remarkable the difference between Dr. Fauci’s statements and what gets proliferated in the press. His comments about a “phased opening of the country” have been repeatedly misinterpreted; sometimes seemingly on purpose. Some have suggested that he’ll never let the country get back to normal while others think that he’s moving too fast. If everyone on TV disagrees with him, he’s probably doing the right thing!
4) Refusing to believe the extent of coronavirus infection in the population. Recent studies using antibody testing is now beginning to show that a significant percentage of the population have been infected with coronavirus. In many large cities these percentages may reach up to 20% or more of the population. The concept that this was a rare infection is contrasted by the fact it is so easy to transmit without symptoms.
5) Hospitals taking the hit. Many of the country’s most prestigious hospitals did the right thing and closed themselves to take on COVID-19 patient care. They now find themselves with sick staff, depleted stores of protective equipment and empty beds as the pandemic wanes. These hospitals have lost enormous amounts of money in an effort to treat patients during the pandemic and will need help to re-open.
6) Listening to TV doctors. It’s remarkable how few of the physician “experts” on TV really understand anything about the pandemic. Three characters stand out as particular problems this week. Dr. Phil compared the pandemic to “people dying from cigarette smoking and in swimming pools every year.” Dr. Drew suggested that dying from the coronavirus was “as likely as getting hit by lightning”, and Dr. Oz (after hawking chloroquine) suggested that even if 3% of children die it was time to open up schools (by the way an elementary school child death is incredibly rare from this infection!). Why don’t these folks just hide somewhere until everything is back to normal and they can go back to their usual psychobabble.
7) Forgetting those you normally rely on. Think about the person who cuts your hair, serves you at your favorite restaurant or cuts your lawn (which they aren’t allowing in Michigan!). If you’re lucky enough to have a salary, send these folks a check. It might ensure that they are around to help you once the pandemic is over.
8) And the winner of the worst idea (maybe of all time) are banks making sure hedge fund billionaires get their “Paycheck Protection Program” loan checks first. Banks are servicing their big customers while basically ignoring small business owners who really need the money. My favorite is Comerica, which kept telling small businesses to ‘wait till their web portal was up.” Then last Thursday they posted a notice (above) that the money had run out. I’m sure all their big customers got their applications submitted while the little guys basically got strung along. This proves big banks are evil!