Apr 032020

Elliott Erwitt National Congress Building by Oscar Niemeyer, Brasilia, Brazil 1961


US Paying Russia For Entire Planeload Of Coronavirus Equipment – Official (R.)
Our Finest Hour (Ben Hunt)
New York City Nurses Demand Personal Protection Equipment (WABC)
New Orleans Coronavirus Death Rate Is Twice New York. Obesity Is A Factor (R.)
US Weekly Jobless Claims Blow Past Six Million As Lockdowns Spread (R.)
Israeli Scientists: Coronavirus Vaccine Tested On Humans By June 1 (JPost)
France’s Coronavirus Death Toll Jumps As Nursing Homes Included (R.)
Germany Has A Low Coronavirus Mortality Rate: Here’s Why (CNBC)
Fed’s Dilemma: Picking Winners For $4 Trillion In Credit (R.)
This Hard Truth About The Mortgage Markets Isn’t Being Told (Jurow)
A Corporate Debt Reckoning Is Coming (13D)
US Air Force To Release $882 Million To Boeing (R.)
US Crude Futures Trim Record Gain (R.)
Cuomo’s Bubble is Starting to Burst (Lauria)
Google Releases Location Data On Lockdowns In 131 Countries (R.)
Leaked Amazon Memo Details Plan to Smear Fired Warehouse Organizer (Vice)



We’ll keep setting records for a while longer yet, driven by the US in particular.

US cases doubled in 8 days. That rate will speed up.

All countries, the US first of all, need to move their focus away from saving companies and onto saving people. Now would be a good time.



Cases 1,030,181 (+ 79,756 from yesterday’s 950,425)

Deaths 54,194 (+ 5,918 from yesterday’s 48,276)




From Worldometer yesterday evening -before their day’s close-.



From Worldometer -NOTE: mortality rate for closed cases is at 20% –



From SCMP:



From COVID2019Live.info:





Who said the RussiaRussia obsession couldn’t be fun? Bottom line between the lines: the US pays, but as the Russians say, both cover half the cost. In other words, the US pays half price. Will that satisfy the American propaganda voices? Stay tuned. Putin was criticized at home for selling these things to the US while Russia may not have enough for itself.

Compare that to Tucker’s America First declaration. And Thailand’s response.

US Paying Russia For Entire Planeload Of Coronavirus Equipment – Official (R.)

The United States is paying Russia for a planeload of medical equipment sent by Moscow to help fight the coronavirus outbreak, a senior Trump administration official said on Thursday, clearing up confusion as to who footed the bill. It had been unclear whether Russia had sent the 60 tons of equipment as a gift or whether it had sold the shipment of ventilators, masks, respirators and other items following a phone discussion between U.S. President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin. Trump, asked about the shipment at a White House news briefing, said he was happy to take delivery of it. “I am not concerned about Russian propaganda, not even a little bit. He (Putin) offered a lot of medical, high-quality stuff that I accepted. And that may save a lot of lives. I’ll take it every day,” he said.

The Russian Foreign Ministry said Moscow had paid half the cost with the other half picked up by Washington. But the senior administration official, speaking to Reuters on condition of anonymity, said the United States paid. “The United States is purchasing the supplies and equipment outright, as with deliveries from other countries,” the official said. “We appreciate Russia selling these items to us below market value.” The official did not give an exact cost. The State Department did not respond to requests for more information. The plane arrived on Wednesday at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York and the gear was to be inspected by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to make sure it met U.S. quality standards.


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Ben Hunt is setting up a program to purchase and distribute masks and other PPE equipment in the US. It’s a terrible shame that he, like so many Americans, thinks he must, for some reason, put this in terms of warfare. Shouldn’t it be the opposite?

“There is no country in the world that mobilizes for war more effectively than the United States. And I know you won’t believe me, but I tell you it is true: This will be #OurFinestHour.”

Our Finest Hour (Ben Hunt)

Last week we wrote a brief note (Getting PPE to Healthcare Workers and First Responders) to introduce our efforts to get personal protective equipment (PPE) directly into the hands of frontline heroes: healthcare professionals and emergency responders who put their own lives and their families’ lives at risk every freakin’ day to stem the tide against this virus. Today I want to share with you the story of how this effort has come together into something real and tangible. Today I want to invite you to join us. First let me tell you what we’re NOT doing. We are not competing with federal or state emergency management authorities in their big bulk orders of PPE.

We are not going to drive up the price of these supplies any more than they have already been driven up in this global scramble to acquire medical gear. But we are also not waiting on these federal or state emergency management authorities to get these big bulk orders and then trickle the supplies down to the frontlines. What we ARE doing is putting together an end-to-end grassroots PPE distribution effort, where we source the equipment from certified manufacturers who meet accepted international standards, we pay for these purchases out of a 501(c)(3) foundation where 100 cents of every dollar goes to this effort, and we distribute that PPE all the way through the “last-mile”, getting small quantities of PPE directly into the hands of clinicians and first responders who are in urgent need.

Over the past 10 days we’ve purchased and distributed about 15,000 N95 and N95-equivalent masks directly to the doctors and nurses and firemen and EMTs who need the equipment NOW, in deliveries as small as 30 masks and as large as 500, depending on need. More importantly, we’ve set up a pipeline where we think we can get a steady delivery of 2,000 or so masks per day AND the occasional larger order AND the distribution capacity + knowledge to get this equipment directly to our frontline heroes. We’ve raised more than $200,000 to support this effort. We’ve partnered with incredibly generous private companies ranging in size from a Fortune 50 megacorp to the owners of the local UPS franchise. And we’re just getting started.

[..] If you are a healthcare worker or a first responder anywhere in the United States in urgent need of PPE, or you know someone who is, please fill out the online form below to get on our distribution list. Right now we are focused on N95 and N95-equivalent masks (more on the different types of masks in the Sourcing section of this note), although in the future we will try to supply isolation gowns and other PPE items..


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Ask Ben Hunt.

New York City Nurses Demand Personal Protection Equipment (WABC)

There’s a growing concern among nurses and doctors in New York City that they’ll run out of personal protection equipment (PPE) and supplies. A dozen health care workers spoke out Thursday near Montefiore Medical Center in the Bronx about their concerns. “We’re running out of PPE, we’re running out of pain medication, we’re running out of sedatives,” third-year resident physician Laura Ucik said. State leaders say hundreds of thousands of personal protection masks and supplies have been shipped to New York, but some health care workers say their emergency rooms haven’t benefited yet. “If front line care givers are sick, are dying, there won’t be anyone left to take care of the public,” said Judy Sheridan-Gonzalez, ER nurse and president of the New York State Nurses Association.

Some health care workers are saying they’re being told to reuse not only critical N95 masks but every day supplies. “I was given one disposable gown to use all day to take care of COVID-19 patients,” Ucik said. “And I would hang it up on an IV pole in between patients and put my single N95 mask into a brown paper bag.” It’s a problem at hospitals throughout the area. The New York City Health Department recently sent an alert to hospitals, telling them to “conserve all personal protective equipment now.” It isn’t a request, and the language in the alert states health care facilities must immediately implement these measures. “It puts me at risk, it puts you at risk, everyone in the health care building at risk,” nurse Victoria Lanquah said.

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It’ll prove to be a major factor all over the US.

New Orleans Coronavirus Death Rate Is Twice New York. Obesity Is A Factor (R.)

The coronavirus has been a far deadlier threat in New Orleans than the rest of the United States, with a per-capita death rate twice that of New York City. Doctors, public health officials and available data say the Big Easy’s high levels of obesity and related ailments may be part of the problem. “We’re just sicker,” said Rebekah Gee, who until January was the health secretary for Louisiana and now heads Louisiana State University’s healthcare services division. “We already had tremendous healthcare disparities before this pandemic – one can only imagine they are being amplified now.” Along with New York and Seattle, New Orleans has emerged as one of the early U.S. hot spots for the coronavirus, making it a national test case for how to control and treat the disease it causes.

Chief among the concerns raised by doctors working in the Louisiana city is the death rate, which is twice that of New York and over four times that of Seattle, based on Thursday’s publicly reported data. New Orleans residents suffer from obesity, diabetes and hypertension at rates higher than the national average, conditions that doctors and public health officials say can make patients more vulnerable to COVID-19, the highly contagious respiratory disease caused by the coronavirus. Some 97% of those killed by COVID-19 in Louisiana had a pre-existing condition, according to the state health department. Diabetes was seen in 40% of the deaths, obesity in 25%, chronic kidney disease in 23% and cardiac problems in 21%. Orleans Parish, which encompasses the city, reported 125 confirmed coronavirus deaths as of Thursday, the equivalent of 32 coronavirus deaths per 100,000 people. That rate for New York City was at 15.9 on Thursday.

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Will Reuters stop polling the team of economists now, after another ridiculously off the mark prediction? No, it will not.

US Weekly Jobless Claims Blow Past Six Million As Lockdowns Spread (R.)

The number of Americans filing claims for unemployment benefits shot to a record high of more than 6 million last week as more jurisdictions enforced stay-at-home measures to curb the coronavirus pandemic, which economists say has pushed the economy into recession. Thursday’s weekly jobless claims report from the Labor Department, the most timely data on the economy’s health, reinforced economists’ views that the longest employment boom in U.S. history probably ended in March. With a majority of Americans now under some form of lockdown, claims are expected to rise further. Economists said worsening job losses underscored the need for additional fiscal and monetary stimulus. President Donald Trump last week signed a historic $2.3 trillion package, with provisions for companies and unemployed workers.

The Federal Reserve has also undertaken extraordinary measures to help companies weather the highly contagious virus, which has brought the country to a halt. “These data underscore the magnitude of the stop-work order that has been imposed on the economy,” said Conrad DeQuadros, senior economic advisor at Brean Capital in New York. “The scale of the increase should also focus policymakers on getting the cash into the economy with possibly a fourth fiscal package and additional Fed lending programs.” [..] Initial claims for state unemployment benefits surged 3.341 million to a seasonally adjusted 6.648 million for the week ended March 28, the government said. That was double the previous all-time high of 3.307 million set in the prior week. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast claims would jump to 3.50 million in the latest week, though estimates were as high as 5.25 million.

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There are dozens of these things happening. This is the Jerusalem Post on an Israeli company, which makes the “news” suspicious right off the bat.

Israeli Scientists: Coronavirus Vaccine Tested On Humans By June 1 (JPost)

A team of Israeli researchers says that they are days away from completing the production of the active component of a coronavirus vaccine that could be tested on humans as early as June 1. “We are in the final stages and within a few days we will hold the proteins – the active component of the vaccine,” Dr. Chen Katz, group leader of MIGAL’s biotechnology group, told The Jerusalem Post. In late February, MIGAL (The Galilee Research Institute) committed to completing production of its vaccine within three weeks and having it on the market in 90 days. Katz said they were slightly delayed because it took longer than expected to receive the genetic construct that they ordered from China due to the airways being closed and it having to be rerouted.

As a reminder, for the past four years, researchers at MIGAL have been developing a vaccine against infectious bronchitis virus (IBV), which causes a bronchial disease affecting poultry. The effectiveness of the vaccine has been proven in preclinical trials carried out at the Veterinary Institute. “Our basic concept was to develop the technology and not specifically a vaccine for this kind or that kind of virus,” said Katz. “The scientific framework for the vaccine is based on a new protein expression vector, which forms and secretes a chimeric soluble protein that delivers the viral antigen into mucosal tissues by self-activated endocytosis, causing the body to form antibodies against the virus.”

In preclinical trials, the team demonstrated that the oral vaccination induces high levels of specific anti-IBV antibodies, Katz said. “Let’s call it pure luck,” he said. “We decided to choose coronavirus as a model for our system just as a proof of concept for our technology.”

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This can’t be the exception. Such “counting errors” maust be commonplace.

France’s Coronavirus Death Toll Jumps As Nursing Homes Included (R.)

The coronavirus death count in France surged to nearly 5,400 people on Thursday after the health ministry began including nursing home fatalities in its data. The pandemic had claimed the lives of 4,503 patients in hospitals by Thursday, up 12% on the previous day’s 4,032, said Jerome Salomon, head of the health authority. A provisional tally showed the coronavirus had killed a further 884 people in nursing homes and other care facilities, he added. This makes for a total of 5,387 lives lost to coronavirus in France – an increase of 1,355 over Wednesday’s cumulative total – although data has not yet been collected from all of the country’s 7,400 nursing homes. “We are in France confronting an exceptional epidemic with an unprecedented impact on public health,” Salomon told a news conference.

The country’s broad lockdown is likely to be extended beyond April 15, Prime Minister Edouard Philippe said on Thursday, extending a confinement order to try and deal with the crisis that began on March 17. The government was racing to try to ensure it can produce or procure itself certain medications needed to treat coronavirus patients as stocks were running low, Philippe told TF1 TV, echoing concerns across Europe as the pandemic places a huge strain on hospitals in Italy, Spain and elsewhere. More than two-thirds of all the known nursing home deaths have been registered in France’s Grand Est region, which abuts the border with Germany. It was the first region in France to be overwhelmed by a wave of infections that has rapidly moved west to engulf greater Paris, where hospitals are desperately trying to add intensive care beds to cope with the influx of critically ill patients.

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A few remarks: Germany has a huge amount of ICU places. Neighbor the Netherlands has far fewer. But that’s also partly due to a different philosophy: where most countries try to keep people alive as long as possible, the Netherlands has a tradition, way before corona, of focusing more on quality than quantity of life. Old people with multiple ailments are not kept alive at all costs.

And if Andrew Cuomo is correct when he stated that of all people put on a ventilator only 20% survives, a question mark may be suitable. Is Germany’s low death rate a result of them keeping people on ventilators for a long time that will not have a quality life again? Religion is a big issue, but on the other hand there’s a huge increase in Do Not Resuscitate documents.

Note: Germany this morning, like many other countries have, issued a warning that it may run out of ICU places. That may lead to German doctors having to make decisions that they’re not used to making, unlike their Dutch counterparts.

Germany Has A Low Coronavirus Mortality Rate: Here’s Why (CNBC)

Germany seems to be taking the epidemic in its stride with a high number of cases but a low number of deaths, thanks to a number of factors. In Europe, while Italy and Spain are the worst hit countries with over 100,000 cases each, as of Friday, Germany has recorded 84,794 confirmed cases but has witnessed just 1,107 deaths, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. The low mortality rate in Germany, at just over 1%, is far below its neighboring European countries, and this has been put down to Germany’s decision to implement widespread testing of people suspected of having the virus, as opposed to Italy or the U.K.’s decision to only test symptomatic cases.

Karl Lauterbach, a professor of health economics and epidemiology at the University of Cologne, and a politician in the Social Democratic Party (SPD) of Germany, told CNBC that Germany’s less severe experience of the pandemic so far was down to a handful of factors. “I think so far we’ve been lucky because we were hit by the wave of new infections later than many other European countries, for example Italy, Spain and France,” he told CNBC Thursday. “So we had a minor but important delay in the wave of infections coming to Germany. Secondly, the first people that got infected in Germany tended to be younger than the average of the population … so we were hit later and with younger patients initially.”

Lauterbach noted that a third factor that helped Germany was a slow increase in the number of infections, allowing those patients to be treated at the country’s top medical institutions, including some of the country’s best university hospitals (including those in Bonn, Dusseldorf, Aachen and Cologne) in the Heinsberg region where there was a cluster of infections at the start of the outbreak. “Number four, all things considered, the German health-care system and hospital system has been modernized by the Social Democrats and Christian Democrats over the last 20 years … this meant we had more hospital beds, more ventilators, more ICU (Intensive Care Units) beds and more hospital doctors, roughly speaking, than any other comparable country in Europe … So our system is in a reasonable shape for such an epidemic.”

While almost all European countries have introduced lockdowns to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, fatality rates have differed wildly. The mortality rate in Italy around the end of March stood at 11%, for example. Germany’s rate is comparable with South Korea, a country that has also attracted plaudits for its management of the coronavirus crisis with extensive testing, contact tracing and digital surveillance of its citizens. Germany’s lockdown, alongside a rigorous testing regime, has also helped, Lauterbach said. While countries like the U.K. now have to build a diagnostics industry from scratch, Germany already had one built around the multinational might of Roche.

The country reportedly has the capacity to carry out up to 500,000 tests a week, whereas the U.K. can currently only manage just over 10,000 a day. Asked about the possible trajectory Germany’s coronavirus rate could take, Lauterbach said his worst-case scenario was that 10% of Germany’s 83 million population contract the virus, and with a 1% fatality rate, then 80,000 people would die. “It must be lower than that, it would be a tragedy if 10% of the population get infected, that’s my personal worst-case scenario.”

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We all know who will be the winners.

Fed’s Dilemma: Picking Winners For $4 Trillion In Credit (R.)

When the Federal Reserve polled Wall Street about financial stability risks last fall, “global pandemic” didn’t make the list. But the coronavirus outbreak has triggered virtually every other shock that was mentioned – from a stock market rout to a looming global recession – and is forcing the U.S. central bank and the U.S. Treasury to triage a system springing leaks by the day. Compared with the 2007-2009 meltdown, which was centered in the mortgage and financial markets, the current crisis is a massively more complex problem with the Fed pulled to intervene in virtually every aspect of U.S. household and corporate commerce and finance.

The challenge now facing the central bank, in consultation with the Treasury, is prioritizing which market, set of companies or group of institutions to help next as it plans how to leverage more than $450 billion of seed money from the Treasury into perhaps $4.5 trillion in credit programs. It is an uncomfortable role that could push the Fed beyond its traditional job of keeping financial markets open and running smoothly, to picking winners and losers in whatever economy emerges from a pandemic that has brought business activity to a virtual standstill.

“You’ve entered not just the world of accepting credit risk but of allocating it as well,” said Mark Spindel, a Fed historian who is the chief executive officer of Potomac River Capital. Through the emergency $2.3 trillion legislation passed last week, “Congress and Treasury have decided to cast the Fed as the only balance sheet large enough” for the measures that might be needed. In the extreme, that could include roughly $26 trillion in debt held by non-financial companies and households – $16 trillion if home mortgages are excluded.

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Keith Jurow omits one way the housing zombie has been kept alive: ultra low rates.

This Hard Truth About The Mortgage Markets Isn’t Being Told (Jurow)

Everyone wants to know what impact the coronavirus and the government response to it will have on housing markets. While it is too early to hazard a guess, some things are becoming increasingly clear. Already, it looks as if the U.S. is moving towards a temporary moratorium on mortgage payments. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac unveiled an emergency program which provides a two-month deferral of mortgage payments for any homeowner who claims to be facing a hardship because of the virus. The payments will be tacked on at the end of the mortgage term. The coronavirus rescue law just enacted by Congress includes a provision which requires all firms that service federally-backed mortgages to grant a forbearance of up to 360 days for any borrowers who say they have been harmed by the coronavirus outbreak.

It is not much of a stretch to say that this virus has changed everything. Many of you may sense that the virus has undermined what you thought was still a fairly strong housing market around the country. In truth, the so-called housing recovery since 2010 has been little more than a carefully constructed illusion. The belief in a strong housing recovery was carefully devised using a strategy of misleading information, withheld data and false impressions. As I have explained in recent columns, the strategy to turn around collapsing housing markets unfolded in three parts: (1) restrict the number of foreclosed properties placed on the market; (2) radically reduce the number of seriously delinquent homes actually foreclosed and repossessed, and (3) provide millions of delinquent homeowners a mortgage modification as an alternative to foreclosure.

This strategy fooled nearly everyone into believing that the disaster has been overcome. The best example is Los Angeles County — ground zero for the collapse. In 2008, more than 37,000 properties were foreclosed. The plunge in foreclosures didn’t really kick in until 2012 when the number dropped to slightly over 10,000. The next year, foreclosures plunged to 3,340. Don’t think for a minute that this was due to an improving economy. Not at all. It was simply the strategy of desperate servicers. With so few properties foreclosed and even fewer placed on the market, home prices had no where to go but up.

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The Fed will be dragged to the ground by the zombies it’s carrying.

A Corporate Debt Reckoning Is Coming (13D)

Corporate debt is the timebomb everyone saw ticking, but no one was able to defuse. Ratings agencies warned about it: Moody’s, S&P. Central banks and international financial institutions did too: the Fed, the Bank of England, the Bank for International Settlements, the IMF. Financial luminaries expressed concern: Jamie Dimon, Seth Klarman, Jes Staley, Jeffrey Gundlach, Henry McVey. Even a presidential candidate brought the issue on the campaign trail: Elizabeth Warren. Yet, as we’ve documented in these pages for more than two years, corporations have only piled on more debt as their balance sheet health has deteriorated.

Total U.S. non-financial corporate debt sits at just under $10 trillion, a record 47% of GDP. One in six U.S. companies is now a zombie, meaning their interest expenses exceed their earnings before interest and taxes. As of year-end 2019, the percentage of listed companies in the U.S. losing money over 12 months sat close to 40%. In the 12 months to November, non-financial S&P 500 cash balances had declined by 11%, the largest percentage decline since at least 1980.
For too long, record-low interest rates inspired complacency, from companies to lenders to regulators and investors. As we warned in WILTW August 8, 2019, corporate fundamentals will eventually matter. Now, with COVID-19 grinding the global economy to a halt, that time has come.

Systemic threats are littered throughout the corporate debt ecosystem. Greater than 50% of outstanding debt is rated BBB, one rung above junk. As downgrades come, asset managers will be forced to flood the market with supply at a time demand has dried up. Meanwhile, leveraged loans — which have swelled by 50% since 2015 to over $1.2 trillion — threaten unprecedented losses given covenant deterioration. And bond ETFs could face a liquidity crisis as a flood of redemptions force offloading of all-too-illiquid bonds. Red lights are now flashing. Distressed debt in the U.S. has quadrupled in less than a week to nearly $1 trillion. Last week, bond fund outflows quadrupled the previous record, which was set the previous week. Moody’s and S&P have already declared a significant portion of outstanding debt under review for potential downgrade.

Source: FInancial Times

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Boeing’s miliary division is as fault-prone as its 737MAX part. And that’s what the country’s security depends on.

US Air Force To Release $882 Million To Boeing (R.)

The U.S. Air Force will release $882 million in payments to Boeing that were held back due to flaws in the KC-46 air refueling tanker, a Pentagon official said on Thursday. The release of the payment to Boeing is part of a broader recommendation sent to Air Force contracting officials, according to a memo seen by Reuters, aimed at maintaining the financial health of suppliers to the Department of Defense. Will Roper, the Air Force’s chief buyer, told reporters the initiative will free up billions of dollars in funding for numerous contractors, not just Boeing. “If we want to have a defense industrial base coming out of COVID-19, that’s able to continue building,” Roper said, “every day is a new challenge.”

Boeing’s financial situation has become increasingly precarious as economic fallout from the coronavirus has frozen key lending markets and cut off demand for Boeing’s commercial aircraft. The Air Force had the right to hold back about $28 million of the cost of each of the first 52 KC-46 Pegasus jets on order to ensure Boeing delivers fully functional tankers. With 33 jets delivered thus far, the Air Force could have withheld up to $924 million. The Air Force plans to buy 179 of the aircraft, which refuel other aircraft mid-air, but the program has been plagued with problems, including foreign object debris found onboard the planes and issues with a camera system used during the refueling process.

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A lot of money changed hands yesterday. But who won?

US Crude Futures Trim Record Gain (R.)

Benchmark U.S. crude fell more than 1% in early trade on Friday, coming off its biggest one-day gain in the previous session after U.S. President Donald Trump said he expected Saudi Arabia and Russia to announce a major oil production cut. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were down 1.4%, or 36 cents, at $24.96 a barrel at 2223 GMT, after having surged 24.7% on Thursday. Even with the huge gains, prices have still slumped nearly 60% this year as oil demand has plummeted due to the coronavirus pandemic while Saudi Arabia and Russia have flooded the market with crude in a price war.

Trump said he had spoken to Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, and expects Saudi Arabia and Russia to cut oil output by as much as 10 million to 15 million barrels, as the two countries signaled willingness to make a deal. Analysts said even if Russia and Saudi Arabia agreed to cut production by as much as 15 million barrels per day (bpd) that would not be enough to balance the market in face of a deep economic recession. “The 10-15 million bpd oil production cut reportedly being brokered by President Trump is a great start, but deeper cuts will likely be needed to get through a difficult Q2,” said Stephen Innes, chief global market strategist at AxiCorp. A deal between Russia and Saudi Arabia could effectively establish a floor for WTI in the $30s, he said.

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At times it feels like he closely follows a Rudy Giuliani scenario. Rule of thumb: if someone has never been really popular and all of a sudden is, do ask why.

Cuomo’s Bubble is Starting to Burst (Lauria)

Cuomo’s present regard for the well-being of every New Yorker, rich or poor, and his lyrical demands to ramp up the number of hospital beds and ventilators is undermined by an ongoing record of drastically cutting back on the state’s assistance to public medical facilities that serve the poor. While he is now frantically trying to add hospital beds in the state (which has lost 20,000 in the past 20 years), Cuomo, over the past decade, agreed to close and consolidate numerous public hospitals, mostly serving the poor, to save money. For instance, in 2013 he approved the closure of the 500-bed Long Island College Hospital in Brooklyn, despite objections from the community.

Even in these extraordinary circumstances his budget proposal to shave $400 million off the state’s $35 billion Medicaid bill—which provides care to the poorest New Yorkers—was accepted by the state Senate on Thursday when it passed Cuomo’s 2020 budget. It comes precisely as Medicaid recipients need it most. The state Assembly is to vote on the budget Friday. “So determined is Cuomo to slash Medicaid spending that he’s prepared to reject more than $6 billion in matching federal aid approved earlier this month because it would force him to alter his austerity strategy,” The Nation reported on Monday. It said:

“If Cuomo gets his way with the state budget [which the Senate has now given him], many of the city’s most besieged hospitals will lose money at a time when Covid-19 is threatening to crash New York’s health care system. Central Brooklyn hospitals, serving many of the borough’s working class and poor, could lose $38 million a year. Manhattan hospitals could lose up to $58 million a year.” Naomi Zewde, an assistant professor in the Graduate School of Public Health and Health Policy at CUNY, told the magazine: “’The proposal to cut funding to public hospitals during a pandemic reflects really poor decision-making.’” Making it worse, is that Cuomo’s budget did not include rises in property or wealth taxes, despite a $10-15 billion shortfall. “There were no new taxes on the ultrarich, a measure many liberals had clamored for,” The New York Times reported.

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Yes, surveillance state. But no, it’s nothing new.

Google Releases Location Data On Lockdowns In 131 Countries (R.)

Google’s analysis of location data from billions of users’ phones is the largest public dataset available to help health authorities assess if people are abiding with shelter-in-place and similar orders issued across the world. Its reports show charts that compare traffic from Feb. 16 to March 29 at subway, train and bus stations, grocery stores and other broad categories of places with a five-week period earlier this year. In Italy, one of the countries hardest hit by the virus, visits to retail and recreation locations, including restaurants and movie theaters, plunged 94% while visits to workplaces slid 63%. Reflecting the severity of the crisis there, grocery and pharmacy visits in Italy dropped 85% and park visits were down by 90%.

In the United States, California, which was the first in the with a statewide lockdown, cut visits to retail and recreation locations by half. By contrast, Arkansas, one of the few states without a sweeping lockdown, has seen such visits fall 29%, the lowest for a U.S. state. The data also underscore some challenges authorities have faced in keeping people apart. Grocery store visits surged in Singapore, the United Kingdom and elsewhere as travel restrictions were set to go into place. Visits to parks spiked in March in some San Francisco Bay Area counties, forcing them to later put the sites off limits. By contrast, in Japan where authorities have been relatively relaxed in urging social distancing measures but where calls have been growing daily for a state of emergency, visits to retail and recreational places fell 26%. Visits to workplace dropped a mere 9%.

[..] Facebook Inc, which like Google has billions of users, has shared location data with non-governmental researchers that are producing similar reports for authorities in several countries. But the social media giant has not published any findings. Infectious disease specialists have said analyzing travel across groups by age, income and other demographics could help shape public service announcements. Google, which infers demographics from users’ internet use as well as some data given when signing up to Google services, said it was not reporting demographic information. The company said, though, it was open to including additional information and countries in follow-up reports.

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The biggest winner in the lockdown economy still finds time to abuse its workers.

Leaked Amazon Memo Details Plan to Smear Fired Warehouse Organizer (Vice)

Leaked notes from an internal meeting of Amazon leadership obtained by VICE News reveal company executives discussed a plan to smear fired warehouse employee Christian Smalls, calling him “not smart or articulate” as part of a PR strategy to make him “the face of the entire union/organizing movement.” “He’s not smart, or articulate, and to the extent the press wants to focus on us versus him, we will be in a much stronger PR position than simply explaining for the umpteenth time how we’re trying to protect workers,” wrote Amazon General Counsel David Zapolsky in notes from the meeting forwarded widely in the company. The discussion took place at a daily meeting, which included CEO Jeff Bezos, to update each other on the coronavirus situation.

Amazon SVP of Global Corporate Affairs Jay Carney described the purpose to CNN on Sunday: “We go over the update on what’s happening around the world with our employees and with our customers and our businesses. We also spend a significant amount of time just brainstorming about what else we can do” about COVID-19. Zapolsky’s notes also detailed Amazon’s efforts to buy millions of protective masks to protect its workers from the coronavirus, as well as an effort to begin producing and selling its own masks. So far, the company has secured at least 10 million masks for “our operations guys,” with 25 million more coming from a supplier in the next two weeks, Zapolsky wrote. Amazon fired the warehouse worker Smalls on Monday, after he led a walkout of a number of employees at a Staten Island distribution warehouse.

Amazon says he was fired for violating a company-imposed 14-day quarantine after he came into contact with an employee who tested positive for the coronavirus. Smalls says the employee who tested positive came into contact with many other workers for longer periods of time before her test came back. He claims he was singled out after pleading with management to sanitize the warehouse and be more transparent about the number of workers who were sick. [..] “We should spend the first part of our response strongly laying out the case for why the organizer’s conduct was immoral, unacceptable, and arguably illegal, in detail, and only then follow with our usual talking points about worker safety,” Zapolsky wrote. “Make him the most interesting part of the story, and if possible make him the face of the entire union/organizing movement.”

Read more …


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Home Forums Debt Rattle April 3 2020

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    Elliott Erwitt National Congress Building by Oscar Niemeyer, Brasilia, Brazil 1961   • US Paying Russia For Entire Planeload Of Coronavirus Equip
    [See the full post at: Debt Rattle April 3 2020]

    V. Arnold

    Elliott Erwitt National Congress Building by Oscar Niemeyer, Brasilia, Brazil 1961

    That is one awesome picture…!!!

    The rest…later will be greater…


    Won’t someone state the obvious: US practices are extremely inefficient and wasteful. Bitching about having only one N95 mask and only one gown per day? Gimme a break. No, you are not entitled to a new single use mask every time you enter a hospital room, only to be disposed of and discarded the moment you leave the room to move on to the next patient (and the patient likely to be charged $500 for a $5 item).

    Polder Dweller

    A few remarks: Germany has a huge amount of ICU places. Neighbor the Netherlands has far fewer. But that’s also partly due to a different philosophy: where most countries try to keep people alive as long as possible, the Netherlands has a tradition, way before corona, of focusing more on quality than quantity of life. Old people with multiple ailments are not kept alive at all costs.

    Maybe, but then why does Worldometer say that there are 22400 total recovered in Germany against 250 in The Netherlands?

    John Day

    I worked a full day at clinic yesterday, not just the afternoon, as I usually do, because I went in to help work out the flows, tent placements, car greeting and routing, parking spots for drive up swabs and so on.,
    We have a covered waiting area by the south entrance, and we have put a big tent in it, and a portable privacy fence around it for COVID testing patients to wait outdoors. It is really the best sheltered place, but there is another, smaller space that can serve as a waiting area, if we have to put two exam tents in this space. The greeting/masking desk is in front of the entry, and we can locate a provider-space for gowning/gloving, specimens, documents nearby and sheltered also. We got it laid out, and still, we wait…
    “The Wai-ai-ting is the hardest part”, quoth Tom Petty, but it’s not quite true.
    The first thing a medical student learns on-call is to deal with onslaughts of urgent work, emergencies all night and day. The later, and more psychological challenge is to deal with the lulls, the unnervingly quiet periods, while awaiting the onslaught.
    Due to Austin, Texas cancelling South By Southwest on Friday March 6, a full week before spring break, then cancelling school the Friday before spring break, a strong signal was sent early, before Austin had confirmed COVID cases (or tests, really). That first weekend of spring break, the wife of the UT president, then the president tested positive, after schmoozing donors on the east coast for a week or two. Austin was shut down by the time we heard that, voluntarily shut down. The restaurant closures did not come until after spring break, but traffic on all the streets had already dried up, and restaurants were largely empty. Grocery stores had already cut hours and had people waiting outside to keep aisles uncrowded inside. The mandatory shuttering made very little change.
    Austinites were early adopters. Austin continues to have a trickle of COVID cases, as our ability to test gradually increases, and our hospitals and clinics are waiting with the decks cleared for action. Waiting…
    Austin/Travis-County has 351 confirmed cases this morning, in something like a million people. The Health Department is still able to trace contacts. My first positive patient did not have a fever. I broke protocols to test her, because she lost her sense of smell. As of yesterday afternoon, she was feeling better, but we will check on her again today. She remains “minimally symptomatic”. University Hospital did not have a COVID patient, but my brother Robert’s hospital has 2.
    There are a million people in this area, who have not had novel coronavirus infection, and will eventually get it, we presume.
    At this rate, it will take over a decade for everybody to get infected. That seems un-doable, since you can only do so much work at home, and the internet is bound to break some day. Everybody at work was somewhat uncomfortable with the waiting yesterday. I recognized the pattern in myself. It must be embraced.
    Those of you in New York are in a different boat, a cruise-ship, hunkered down with a clear and present threat.
    What we know from the 1918-1919 Spanish Flu epidemic is that having a long quiet quarantine is the best possible thing, the least damaging to society, the economy, and tears up the fewest families with untimely deaths.
    Extended, uneasy bored waiting is success, the best we can do.
    In Austin, it is spring. A coworker took a picture of me with the artichokes a few days ago, out in the vegetable garden I planted for my coworkers, which I was tending a little, as I do. Thanks LouAnne.
    The new staff entrance is through the garden and break-patio area. It’s getting attention. People are cropping kale and chard, and picking and eating the sugar-snap peas. The magic may be starting to work. I have planted this garden 4 years ago as a subliminal invitation to healthy, humanizing change, in the transition, which is now upon us. There are other humanizing and natural changes for us, as the machine tries to completely isolate and de-humanize us. We are the human animals which nature evolved so gradually to work effectively in small groups, to grow food and take care of each other, and emergencies. That is where our strengths lie.
    We must now explore our human strengths as we await the onslaught of dread contagion.
    This is our transition to a future more human or less human.
    It is our future to build as cooperative groups or as isolated slaves.

    Dr D Rich

    ***Leading cause of death in the United States is heart diseae @ 650,000 per annum.

    ***Cancer deaths reach 500,000 with the subcategory lung cancer @ 150,000

    Now, for the difficult discussion. COVID-19 affects the elderly (let’s agree to over 65 yrs old) with the most co-morbidities (heart disease, COPD, asthma, DM, cancer etc).
    This population, old and sick, is the most likely to have had a discussion with their physicians about end of life care. Those discussions are then formalized in documents such as a Living Will, Advanced Healthcare Directives, Do Not Resuscitate Order (DNR) and Durable Power of Attorney for health affairs.
    These documents and their initiatives address the very contingencies we see today where a disease progresses to the point of futility as manifested as the need for intubation and respiratory support, in a word, heroic.
    The Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome, Acute Lung Injury and disseminated intravascular coagulation that often accompany severe COVID-19 disease signal short-term mortality of 30 to 50%, the very situation designed for an advanced healthcare directive.
    Intubated for weeks on a ventilator is exactly the situation most people believe they are precluding with their advanced directive. The document remains valid in the face of a novel disease.

    So, which patients require the ventilators?



    Compared to previous years?
    Obesity Is A Factor
    It’ll prove to be a major factor all over the US.

    • New Orleans Coronavirus Death Rate Is Twice New York. Obesity Is A Factor (R.)

    Some 97% of those killed by COVID-19 in Louisiana had a pre-existing condition, according to the state health department. Diabetes was seen in 40% of the deaths, obesity in 25%, chronic kidney disease in 23% and cardiac problems in 21%.
    Compared to previous years?

    • France’s Coronavirus Death Toll Jumps As Nursing Homes Included (R.)

    The coronavirus death count in France surged to nearly 5,400 people on Thursday after the health ministry began including nursing home fatalities in its data. The pandemic had claimed the lives of 4,503 patients in hospitals by Thursday, up 12% on the previous day’s 4,032, said Jerome Salomon, head of the health authority. A provisional tally showed the coronavirus had killed a further 884 people in nursing homes and other care facilities, he added.
    It was the first region in France to be overwhelmed by a wave of infections that has rapidly moved west to engulf greater Paris, where hospitals are desperately trying to add intensive care beds to cope with the influx of critically ill patients.

    “So, which patients require the ventilators?”
    I think that is the Wrong question.
    What is the mortality Compared to previous years?


    Dr D Rich said “Now, for the difficult discussion. COVID-19 affects the elderly (let’s agree to over 65 yrs old) with the most co-morbidities (heart disease, COPD, asthma, DM, cancer etc)….”

    I’m glad you brought it up. I’m in that age group and I can’t think of a better age group for this pandemic to kill. I would find it horrifying if it was killing my children and grandchildren as in 1918.
    There are over 7.5 billion people on this planet. So if a 105 people die every minute normally + another 3-6 due to the virus, and most of those are old and sick anyway, then we as a species have a long way to go to even worry since about 250 births occur each minute. Total 110 deaths vs 250 births.


    Excellent point D. Rich. Kind of dove tails with Ilargi’s observation about quality vs quantity of life span comparisons between Netherlands and Germany.
    Collective gardens sound lovely. Except they are places where people could congregate so in Ontario Canada it is now an offence to work in a community garden. Insane.


    In Ohio, They’ve closed the play grounds but the golf courses are still open. I hate gentrification.

    Dr. D

    “German health-care system and hospital system has been modernized by the Social Democrats and Christian Democrats over the last 20 years”

    Suuuuure, pal…at the expense of Greece, Italy, and Portugal. Ain’t those Germans smart and far-thinking with extracted colonial money? Why is Lombardy not so smart?

    Also how did testing help? You have it. Great! We know. And we have no cure and nothing for you to do. Somehow knowing helps you breathe better? Reduces your age and underlying conditions?

    “Fed’s Dilemma: Picking Winners for $4 Trillion in Credit (R.)”

    Who’s the winner? Us, because this is going to take the system down. The $6T they leveraged 10:1 won’t last 30 days. You want Socialism? So the system is going to replace every Jimmy-Bob paying every Sally in every transaction? Yeah, that’s Quadrillions, right off. You’ll find out in seconds how tiny the Fed and the Government are in relation to us, the market. But no one will learn except to see it for themselves. Back for a larger bailout in 30 days. And larger. Forever. Things that can’t go on, won’t. It’s a reset.

    “The Fed will be dragged to the ground by the zombies it’s carrying.”

    Yes, and that’s the point.

    “US Crude Futures Trim Record Gain (R.)”

    Who won? Chaos. The volatility is going to explode all leveraged trades (CME, Commodities) and every derivative. Those won’t close and be seen for 30 days, and then, as with Greece, will be denied, re-defined, and covered up. But with what? More printed money? Good, that’s what ends it.

    “Cuomo, over the past decade, agreed to close and consolidate numerous public hospitals, [20,000 in the past 20 years] mostly serving the poor, to save money.”Hand out more to the Manhattan rich.

    Saving me the trouble of going over this. “Jacobin” monkey-hammered Andy on this, roadkill. Since they cover slavishly, breathlessly, I had no idea it was so bad.

    “Google has billions of users, has shared location data with non-governmental researchers
    Don’t take your phone. Never needed it before now.

    “Leaked Amazon Memo Details Plan to Smear Fired Warehouse Organizer (Vice)”

    Ah, this is why the government helps by giving them taxpayer money to kill workers with Pinkerton cops and WaPo articles.



    ..the first people that got infected in Germany tended to be younger than the average of the population..

    Any disease would tend to hit old and vulnerable people first. What made Germany -initially- an exception I don’t know. Spring festivities?

    Also, the professor of health economics and epidemiology who claims a 10% infection rate would be his worst-case scenario should maybe have his brain checked for a virus. 10% is everybody else’s pipe-dream scenario. 60-70% is a general expectation.


    Hey boss. So Gandhi was one of your heroes, huh?


    I agree.

    I only want to die once.
    Don’t be jealous or selfish or mean by halting my journey
    Give me a pain killer.
    Let me go.
    Every one says that its better in heaven.
    DNR (do not Resuscitate)

    I’m retired. I’ve fulfilled my function. Soooo whaaat if I got an answer for everything.
    If nobody wants to hear what wisdom that I have accumulated, why would you keep me around, keep me from going to heaven?
    What ever is happening and whatever is being blamed on the virus, will be irrelevant to me after I reach heaven.

    Captain Nemo

    Swiss Propaganda Research has a site called “Facts about Covid-19” – it will be updated daily. You’ll find the newest information by scrolling down. https://swprs.org/a-swiss-doctor-on-covid-19/
    The relativ low fatality rate in Germany is also due to recommendations by lung specialists (physicians) to be very conservative with intubations.
    I have to admit, I would like to see more facts and not the repetition of the mainstream propaganda here concerning the virus. We had fake pandemies in the past – e.g. the swine influenca in 2009 that followed a similar script.


    Polder, the Dutch don’t seem to publish their Recovered numbers. No idea why, and can’t find them anywhere.

    New York is now at over 100,000, which puts them in third place behind Italy and Spain.

    Oh, and apparently a virologist said sportsgames and concerts will never be the same. Seems a bit much, but surely a thought.


    YES!!! Give em hell, Grandma!!!!


    Dr. D

    No medical system without an economy:

    “Unprecedented unemployment could bring Medicaid to the brink. “This is a quick enough shock that it could be a huge financial burden on Medicaid systems across the states.”

    I wouldn’t worry about it. We’re already gone, as planned. I told you they hit the detonator back in Sept 14th, a month before the earliest case.

    Dr D Rich

    @OMG…Give Me A Break

    BlackRock is spot on observation and they’re overseen by Kappa Beta Phi.


    Also OMG…GMAB, to expand on the Psychopath vid you posted. Let’s face it, the Cluster
    Bs are running this sh*t-show coz that’s what they do. Cluster B personality disorders include Antisocial, Borderline and Narcissistic. Let’s ignore histrionic. They drive individuals crazy. They push entire societies into collective madness. And they make their legion of followers execute their plans. The most dangerous, it’s all relative to their victim, of the group wears a Mask of emotion and sanity like a skilled actor/actress. They are in fact affectless, capable of only a superficial display of emotion/sanity that serves a narrow purpose. They are cold to the bone. Thomas Modly’s public justification for firing the Theodore Roosevelt skipper is a rare public exposition of the psychopath’s cruelty. They disdain empathic people.
    We are already being subjected to a really rough ride the world over with no end in sight. And the Bs are consolidating their power as we walk around in a daze.


    I thought it was pretty clear. We, that is Raúl and I, are in disagreement on just about every point.


    Thank You Captain Nemo. A must read. I can’t comment much because it’ says it all.

    “Swiss Propaganda Research has a site called “Facts about Covid-19” – it will be updated daily. You’ll find the newest information by scrolling down. https://swprs.org/a-swiss-doctor-on-covid-19/”

    The beginning and ending quote is priceless:
    The only means to fight the plague is honesty

    Dr D Rich

    Yep, Dr. D, Overnight REPO operations started back in September 2019 and they denied any connection to bank bailout Quantitative Easing 3, 4, 5, 6 or 7.


    If I remember correctly the early cases in Germany were comprised of skiers who had returned from vacation in Italy and Austria – thus the younger ages.
    Note – these are not the very first cases that occurred in the auto parts company.


    I find it ‘interesting’ that so many people here are espousing the idea that this is ‘no big deal’ so why don’t we just let it rip like this is some kind of original thought.

    It’s definitely not an original idea – it was in fact the default position of apparently all the western democracies. The only one that actually admitted this of course was the UK’s Boris Johnson in his ‘herd immunity’ speech.

    I don’t know how many interviews I heard with ‘infectious disease experts’ who basically said something like ‘Well yes we should probably try to contain this … but … that probably won’t work so then we will just switch to ‘mitigation’ and that will be OK. You know a virus knows no borders, there’s really not much we can do” etc. And of course the widely promoted everywhere – ‘Coronavirus – no big deal – the flu is way worse! ‘

    This idea of don’t do much was reinforced by the stats that showed pretty much everyone who died was old and had co-morbidities anyway. Like no big deal. What a great opportunity to make those pension plans whole, save social security and get rid of these deadweights!

    This idea was thoroughly embraced by some of the younger set who were more than ready to ‘party on’ and cheer for the ‘#boomerremover’.

    But then some ‘stuff ‘ happened:
    1) Italy (Holy Shit!!!)
    2) Info from Europe that it wasn’t just killing old folks and the idea that when it hit North America’s morbidly obese population the stats would be much worse.
    3) Imperial College’s March 16 report that showed that basically any effort at ‘mitigation only’ would probably result in a disaster and full on suppression was also needed.

    Number 3 was sort of the last straw. – If it was right then the optics an this thing would bad – really, really BAD.
    Dead bodies all over the place, morgues set up in ice rinks and refrigerator trucks etc. all those dead grannies. The OPTICS would be bad, really, really BAD.
    I mean we already had ‘populism, we already had people pushing for ‘socialism’ – what would happen after this – pitchforks? (or AR-15’s) We better do something!

    So that’s how we got here. That’s the real conspiracy. There was no real preparation for this and there was no desire to emulate places that had a handle on this until it was too late. No effective travel bans, no effective airport screening, no PPE, no masks, no effective testing, no quarantine, not enough contact tracing, no travel restrictions.

    I ‘followed this story’ from pretty much the start. From the first report of an ‘unknown pneumonia’ in China every new piece of info seemed to make the threat worse but confirmation came when China shut down Wuhan – a city of over 11 million people. I never figured the CCP would have any second thoughts about sacrificing a few thousand or a few 10’s of thousands of their citizens so SOMETHING big must be up – something BAD and then of course they shut down the whole country. What more proof would anyone need (but just in case there were those videos out of Wuhan)

    Yet the west did basically nothing because – see above! Now we have operation CYA starting. ‘We thought masks were bad but now we have ‘new info’ so they are good. It’s all China’s fault – We would have done better but they lied! More of that stuff to come I’m sure.

    Meanwhile ..Well as Martenson keeps saying ‘It didn’t have to be this way”


    raul – when i try to access ‘covid19live.info’ i get a server not found error. searching is also ineffective. is there another address? thanks.



    Its weird to read something that doesn’t blame one of the ism/political


    John Day:

    I envy you your garden! Up here in Toronto, I have to wait another month or more before I can plant anything!

    My daughter’s little Dutch pet rabbit, Moki, all of 2 pounds, wants to come down and nibble away at your garden! She loves her greens!


    Isolated at home. All I’ve got is the internet. But TAE did see that Wuhan China was a future global pandemic which corporate media glossed over the best they could.

    Billionaires have a problem. Either they lose everything, taxed at a 70% rate, or they seize control and throw away the facade of democracy. The professionals, medical doctors and technocrats (who run everything) have turned against globalization and the plutocracy. Life is more important than cheap gadgets.

    Navy Capt. Crozier, fired for letter about coronavirus on USS Roosevelt, gets big send-off from sailors

    Medscape; “US Betrays Healthcare Workers in Coronavirus Disaster”

    Nothing will be the same again. Either democracy is restored and every American gets a job, healthcare and shelter or there will be civil wars and the West collapses into nuclear armed failed states.

    John Day

    Thanks Wes,

    I do better where I can grow some food in the winter. Home garden in Austin pictured here a few days ago. http://www.johndayblog.com/2020/04/april-flu-day.html
    I need to get some pictures of the garden down in Yoakum, too. It;s closer to the coast, generally warmer and moister.

    V. Arnold

    Well, as the worm turns; vitamin C has disappeared from the shelves here; a first in my 17 years. Usually the shelves are full. My wife will check the chemist in her home town this afternoon for some vitamin C.
    Masks also at a premium; even if available, only for personal use. Exporting is verbotten with serious charges for violators.
    Home made can be sent out of country…we’re having some made…
    Mostly staying home and exercising via my exercycle; good for heart and lungs…
    75 in a month and a half with no underlying health issues…
    Very disturbing talk in the media, about us old fogies and our expendability; we’re not used up old rags to be thrown out…

    V. Arnold

    Nothing will be the same again. Either democracy is restored and every American gets a job, healthcare and shelter or there will be civil wars and the West collapses into nuclear armed failed states.

    IMO, the U.S. is already a failed nuclear state; the rest will/are already in serious decline. The CV-19 is akin to a coup de grâce…
    As to civil war; unrest is assured, but; civil war? I hope not…

    Actually, what I fear most, is the U.S. will go to war against Iran or Venezuela to distract its citizens from the domestic collapse; being on a war footing would descourage civil unrest and the military could be deployed easily and quickly to put down dissent…


    John Day:

    Some big green thumb! And to think you somehow manage to have 3 gardens growing at the same time!

    I am not sure if we could quite fit your garden into Moki’s cage even though she has a rather large walk-in cage (12′ x 12′ plus 4′ x 12′ plus 6′ x 12′ solarium) for such a small rabbit! I seriously doubt Moki could possibly eat even 1% of all those greens!

    But I do know, being an European rabbit, she would dig a burrow in your garden! (North American rabbits, contrary to Bugs Bunny, do not dig burrows!)

    Dr. D

    Yes, Moto, a pleasant change. You probably already captured this, but the problems was: it’s not going to be stopped. And therefore, exactly as you say, all attempts to quarantine and stop it are indeed optics. Only. What annoys me is that for the purpose of optics only they will take a virus that can’t effectively be stopped, and increase the deaths 10-fold by shutting down the economy. But in good political fashion, if you die of robbery, it doesn’t count, whereas if you die of Wu, it’s the world’s biggest tragedy.

    I mean, the Humanity, the Humanity! Did you see Chris Cuomo had a FEVER? Why, I say! Shut it all down! Shut it all down!

    Denninger is following this extensively, but I figure what’s the point of repeating?
    http://market-ticker.org/akcs-www?post=238786 (among dozens)

    The only way to stop is to stop ALL people, EVERYWHERE, for over 40 days, which implies either level 4 medical conditions and 100% medical quarantines, including the janitors, or to not have any medical care at all.

    If you fail anywhere, at any time, Wu will immediately re-appear and continue where it left off. We don’t have a lot of worry for respirators since they don’t help a great deal anyway.

    Doing any of this will shut down the U.S. economy, the world, cause 10 or 100x more deaths, and perhaps make nations desperate enough to ram navy vessels into cruise ships in an attempt at open piracy. So that’s not lacking empathy, that’s following science and math like an adult. But sure, make sure 90% of the people who subsequently die are unnecessary, from optics and your need to “do something.”

    That said, they are pathological in refusing to show us deaths vs ADDITIONAL deaths. Is anyone dying? At all? Probably, but you wouldn’t know it over the drama and reporting these guys have, in order to make political hay, get the big $$$, and turn the planet into an eternal Stalinist nightmare. As long described in the white papers of the self-same people.

    Martensen is not correct on this, starting as he does from a doctor’s perspective and training. His theories WOULD be great, it WOULD be nice, but I don’t think they intersect that much with the real world.

    For carriers, same. First, as I said, it’s a gift that 98% of your crew are certain to live. Second, you don’t send a letter, “Hey China! Yoohoo! Over here. Disabled ship ripe for the shooting! Sailing in circles like and injured fish!” If you want to start a world war, that’s a great start. Yes, indicating to the enemy your force of readiness IS a removable offense.

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