COVID-19

Now is the time to work together

Indiana’s governor extended stay-at-home orders here again, through May 1. From the little bit of news I am reading I see that our President is agitating for some kind of reopening of the country in May. Given that Indiana has a Republican governor, and that apparently the test for “true Republicanism” these days is allegiance to our President, I expect we’ll see some level of return to former ways next month.

I’ve supported classic conservative politics my whole adult life, but the Republican party has lost its way so badly I don’t recognize it anymore. It discourages me deeply.

Because I limit my news intake, I’m only familiar in a general sense with the various theories about COVID-19’s spread. I guess there’s a one-wave-and-done theory at one end, and a multiple-wave theory at the other. I guess it’s possible that you can get COVID-19 more than once. I guess it’s possible that way more of us have it than we know because we can carry it without symptoms.

I find news reports about the economy more trustworthy, because you can observe and count things. Unemployment is approaching Great Depression levels. The small-business stimulus money is all allocated now, but there wasn’t enough to go around.

From what I’ve read, I’m not alone in thinking we could loosen our restrictions too soon to protect public health, but too late to save many small businesses and prevent a protracted recession or even depression.

At this critical time, the people leading the United States remain locked in a battle to beat the other side. Republican vs. Democrat, a fight to the death. It has sickened me for years, but now I’m thoroughly disgusted. If ever there were a time for working together for a common good, this is it.

Here’s a picture of a cat in a sink. Everybody likes those. Warm and fuzzy.

Sophie

Other COVID-19 stay-at-home reports from Sinù Fogarizzu, Christopher May, Fred Wilson, fishyfisharcade, and J P Cavanaugh.

I seldom talk politics here, on purpose, because I hate pointless arguments. Political talk draws pointless arguments like a garbage truck draws flies. Please don’t start one in the comments. State your position there if you must, but don’t try to convince me of it. This is my soapbox; if you want one of your own, WordPress.com lets you start a blog for free.

Last updated on 18 May 2020 by Jim Grey

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42 thoughts on “Now is the time to work together

  1. Dennis says:

    Jim, very well written piece and wholeheartedly agree with every word. Thank you for your blog as I love reading it even though I think this is my first time commenting on it.
    stay safe and take care.

  2. During my life I’ve spent a great deal of time in America, both for personal and professional reasons. I have many good friends there. I’ve never felt America needed to be made great again; I’ve always thought it’s great. It’s a country I have much affection for.

    But whoever is in charge after this president, whether they are Republican or Democrat, I really hope they can undo the damage of the last few years and truly make America great again.

    • The US is what I know, of course. It’s not as perfect as they taught us it was when I was in public school. But at the moment its leadership is a right mess. I agree, I hope the next administration is able to undo the damage.

  3. Thank You for talking about this! We do need to pull together. And I agree, I don’t think many of our small businesses will survive. But if we all die from COVID-19 it won’t matter anyway……….

    And yes, we are living in ‘Interesting Times’.

    • That’s the essential conflict here. Do we let people die, or do we tank the economy? I think the government is trying to walk that line but they’re doing it in a pretty ham-fisted way.

  4. I use to enjoy strenuous debate, but the exercise served to explore the merits of a topic, to fully explore assumptions, viewpoints, and possible solutions. When the criticisms extended into passing judgement on a person’s intelligence, motivation, or moral fiber, my stomach churned.

    Despite popular notions, it is possible to engage in debate and still respect the person presenting an opposing perspective.

  5. Disappointed in general about lack of govt unity especially the latest. I’m independent I don’t vote by party tho. I’m so frustrated teaching kids to share & compromise when our own leaders refuse to do so. It’s really ANNOYING.

  6. Here in California and especially in the San Francisco Bay Area where I live, government (city, county, state) moved very quickly to shut things down. I believe it has helped a lot. In addition, people are following the SIP rules pretty much. When I am out getting essentials, everyone is wearing masks, respecting distance and going out of their way to be polite. I have also discovered that it is possible to smile with your eyes while wearing a mask…and people smile back. With all of the bickering and finger pointing going on in Washington, it’s nice to see common decency and unity at the street level.

    • In this red state we’re not getting the same behavior. At Meijer today 1/4 or 1/3 of shoppers came with no gloves, no masks. More than once I had to back way up to get out of the way of someone intending to dart right by me.

  7. Roger Meade says:

    The American Enterprise Institute, a conservative think tank, has a piece on their website by Scott Gottlieb which lists the steps than need to happen before we can safely reopen the economy. We have not even begun to get step one done, testing of enough people in a timely manner so we have some idea of how many are carriers. Check it out.

  8. Ian says:

    Here in the UK, we’re just going into our 2nd 3weeks of “Lockdown”. I don’t feel the situation was handled as well as it could have been in the UK either, however, it is what it is. I find small Olympus cameras great to take on my permitted walks. Just finished off a roll of Ilford Pan F Plus in the XA and Kodak Portra 160 in the Mju ll. Today a loaded a roll of Fuji Industrial 100 into the 35rc. I took the Canon T90 out the other day and finished a roll of Ilford XP2 Super but felt a wee bit guilty. Not sure what the next setup will be. Keep up the good work with the blog Jim, it brings some sense of normality with it in these extraordinary days. Psalm 146:3,4 spring to mind. Stay safe and keep well to you, your family and your followers. Ian

  9. Keith Walker says:

    It seems to me that your President and the Republican Party is intent on murdering as many people as possible in order to make as much money as possible for the insanely wealthy.. The more I follow your politics (or try to) it is clear that you are being turned into an authoritarion state, more like the old USSR. America can no longer be relied on as a ‘leader’ of the free world, you insult your friends and allies, withhold essential funds from meaningful and busy organisations such as the WHO, You don’t even support your own people who suffer disasters, such as (I forget the name,of the island was it Puerto Rico?). You close your borders to refugees – what does the poem say on the Statue of Liberty?

  10. Christopher May says:

    Beyond exasperation at the federal government’s inability to come together over this, I’m also perplexed and frustrated that so much of the response at that level has been focused on pointing fingers and shifting blame at this stage of the pandemic. There will be plenty of time for that later. Can we address the problems at hand first so we make sure that we can get to later? Kudos to governors on both sides of the aisle that have stepped up to fill in major gaps at the federal level. I wish their efforts could be matched nationally.

    • Yes, it’s the governors who are truly leading right now. I wonder if this will be the start of a swing toward stronger states and a weaker federal government.

  11. DougD says:

    Yeah, we continue to be aghast up here. As I’ve said before, our Prime Minister JT isn’t my total favorite, but he shows up, he talks sensibly, thanks people and is trying to work with other levels of government. That says a lot.

    Canada’s cases are 1/3 the rate in the USA, (and Australia’s are 1/3 of Canada!) at the hospital Mrs D works at they have not seen the surge of cases which makes us wonder what the end game is here? Can we start to reopen things, surely we can’t hunker down for 14 months or whatever until they develop a good vaccine?

  12. Thanks for the photography of a cat in a sink.

    I’ve been turned off from the tribal politics for years. I still vote but not for anyone on the two major tribes. I wish I could vote them off the island.

  13. Ah yes Jim, I feel for you. I have a brother in Texas. But very glad I live in New Zealand. We are fortunate to have a government who are seeing accurately I think that the alternatives are either a wrecked economy with a big pile of corpses including many doctors and nurses, or a wrecked economy. We have been in lockdown coming up to four weeks, it will probably be extended a little, followed by a carefully managed return to work. New cases here are now in single digits daily. Our borders will remain closed for the foreseeable future. My industry, aviation, is one of the worst hit, but I will be able to retire in October anyway so I am very fortunate. When I first realised that this would be such a devastating and lethal pandemic I was reminded of the promises in Psalm 91. Blessings!

  14. Sometimes there is no right answer. The lockdown was sold as a way to buy some time for treatments to develop and to spread the use of emergency resources. So this was never long-term solution.

    But treatment is still a crapshoot, there is no vaccine on the horizon and we’re on the verge of (or in) an economic freefall.

    So, what’s worse – the still unknown (but probably fairly low) death rate from the virus or a massive job loss from the kind of depression people our age have only read about? I guess it depends on whether you are one of the deaths or one who loses your house because you can’t find work. Bad things are going to happen either way.

    • That’s a good, straight-up-the-middle perspective. Now that I think of it, it was never realistic that a vaccine or treatment would emerge from a few weeks of lockdown.

      If the state reopens, I predict that a lot of people will still socially isolate. The economy won’t roar back to what it was.

  15. I think both parties have gravitated so far to their extremes that most Americans find themselves in the middle without a party. It doesn’t help that we have embraced this “us or them” mentality and that the extremist minorities have found platforms for spreading their ideas. And don’t even get me started on how the 24 hour tv news cycle has made room for opinion in an industry that should be rooted in fact. Anywhoo….. love the kitty cat! So pretty. :)

    • The “silent majority,” as Nixon used to call it, is now in the middle!

      One of the smartest things I ever did was get rid of cable. No more 24-hour news channels for me.

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