Friday, April 17, 2020

Dark Clouds and Silver Linings, Part 3 - (Notes From Hell)

Part 1 and Part 2 can be seen here and here.

We are now in Day Whatev of the Great Chinese Bat Plague and here are some observations from the Death Star orbiting above Sodom-on-the-Hudson.

I need to begin with the arguments being had over when the country goes back to work, especially here in New York City.

The Overlord is not a doctor, but he does have some experience with coronaviruses -- Mrs. Overlord had one, perhaps this very one (no one is quite certain when this thing arose), last year -- and despite being crippled by muscular dystrophy and needing "a ventilator", recovered.

Speaking of the word "ventilator" someone needs to make a distinction, and I think this distinction is deliberately NOT being made as part of a wider effort to paper over the complete failure of government-run healthcare in this country to deal with this problem, as to what is specifically being referred to when this word is used.

So far as I know, "a ventilator" is what one uses when keeping a patient who will not recover alive. It means "Life Support", where the patient is given a trachiostomy (a hole drilled into their throat, removal of the trachia), or intubated, and placed on a mechanical contrivance that provides oxygen and removes carbon dioxide forever until someone "pulls the plug", as opposed to BIPAP and CPAP machines which are common (and often temporary) therapies used to help with a variety of less-severe circumstances.

(Mrs. Overlord uses a BIPAP for 8-10 hours a night, with external oxygen. The machine we use is the Swiss Army Knife of respiratory equipment, with something like 20 different functions, including "emergency ventilator").

So that when a Governor Cuomo gets on television and says "there's a lack of ventilators" does he mean we have a scarcity of (temporary) therapeutic devices, or is he talking about keeping people who are not likely to recover alive indefinitely for no good reason by mechanical means?

If anyone has some expertise in this area, please respond. Otherwise, I'm chalking this hysteria up to just one more move in the Cuomo Disinformation Campaign (along with inflating COVID-19-related death tolls) which are part and parcel of making excuses for the failure of the public health system.

Because from everything I've heard -- from doctors, nurses and EMT's -- the private and for-profit hospitals did just fine, and the State has been sending the National Guard and State Police into them to steal equipment for the public hospitals that don't have any. I also have it on good authority -- my next door neighbor is the chief ER nurse at a local hospital -- that doctors and nurses are being given vacations and furloughs because they aren't needed.

She even tells me that the biggest problem they had in her hospital were not the sick; it was the thousands of hypochondriacs and idiots with the sniffles demanding to be tested on the spot, frightened into believing they were dying by a media and political establishment that counted upon the stupidity and panic of such people to hide the politician's responsibility for the hospitals not being up to snuff.

But, back to "opening" New York City.

According to Douchebag Cuomo and Comrade Warren the city will not "open" again until May, at least, perhaps July or August, as we continue to "flatten the curve" (which is utter bullshit. The Curve had nothing to do with containing the disease and refers to lowering the number of people overcrowding public hospitals). I live here: other than the traffic is suddenly lighter, everyone looks like they've just prepped for surgery, and the level of general politeness has increased (unless toilet paper is involved), you'd never know we were under assault by a plague.

In a city of some 8 million, where I have lived my entire life -- I live on an ISLAND, for fuck's sake-- I know of exactly ONE person who caught this virus (he's recovering at home), and I know of one person who has died (of congestive heart failure, but classified as a COVID-19 death) and that was Mrs. Overlord's sister -- who also had muscular dystrophy and a bad heart. She "tested positive" but that's not necessarily what killed her. It is highly unlikely that if the problem were as severe as stated, I wouldn't know of many more cases, I reckon.

It's not like 9/11 where I can list the people I knew that died or were injured on a scroll as long as my body.

So, where are all these sick people? Because when one talks to one's family, friends, colleagues, neighbors, what one does NOT hear is "so-and-so-has-Coronavirus" or "You-know-who-died-of-the-virus" in any great numbers. And so one must assume that the people affected are largely those one hardly hears or knows about, and who live about the margins of society -- the elderly (of course), but mostly immigrants. Specifically, illegal immigrants. Add The Homeless into the equation, too.

And these are exactly the people who depend upon the Public Health System, that is to say, Government-Run-Health Care, and if we told the truth about "the numbers" we'd discover that the liberal passions for Open Borders and Diversity were, in fact, as dangerous as conservatives have alleged for decades, and that the argument for more government-run-healthcare (like ObamaCare) is undermined by the ineptitude and failures.  But I digress...

"Opening New York" is vital. Not just because people are suffering from unemployment more than the Worker's Influenza, but because of what New York MEANS to the business community. It bears a special cachet that few other places do. Wall Street, the Garment District, Broadway, Silicon Alley, the Diamond District, Hospital Row, Madison Avenue, are vital economic engines and examples of free enterprise and social dynamism unparalleled on Earth. The longer they remain idle, the worse the economic problem gets, and the real danger is in losing what makes them "special".

For it is already axiomatic in modern business that one does not need to "be there" to be there. Modern communications means one does not necessarily need to have a Wall Street address to be plugged into the financial system, for example. It's one of the reasons why tech jobs have fled the city in droves over the last decade-plus (in addition to high taxes, high crime, high social spending, incompetent government). Keeping the city closed longer than necessary just gives business yet one more reason to flee at the earliest opportunity, since mere prestige of place will no longer suffice.

Comrade Warren is making noise that he will not deign to open the city until "everyone is tested", and he can go fuck himself. For a start, that's not his call, and secondly, it's a ridiculous goal. An unnecessary goal, to boot. Testing doesn't cure people and it doesn't eradicate the disease, and the city isn't even following traditional epidemic protocols, anyway, because that would mean asking an illegal immigrant his name and tracking his movements and contacts.

And that's raaaaacist, you know.

This is a malady that most people will never even experience a single symptom from, and from which 98.5% of people who catch it will recover. It's easily killed by soap and goddamned hot water.

In the effort to save the useless, illegal, and circling-the-bowl (core democrat constituencies) we're hurting everyone, and the effort is most likely as useful as fleas are to a dog. It's also indicative of mindset I find distasteful: when you set out to "save everyone", you usually save no one. But, hey, at least you look like you care and are doing something effective.

It's a terrible waste and mis-allocation of resources that endangers others.

Put us back to work and let us deal with the flu. For Christ's Sake, if people in this country weren't such fucking pussies about being sick, we'd be back at work already.

Politicians lie. It is as true as water being composed of oxygen and hydrogen and as Hillary having been sent here by a reptilian alien race to assert a program of insidious mind control prior to invasion. However, the good ones do not lie by COMMISSION -- they will not tell you the sky is purple when that is so easily debunked -- but rather by OMISSION. What they DON'T tell you is more important that what is being relayed.

A compliant press helps them. I don't believe a word about anything -- including the numbers, the severity, the causes, or the scope of this "pandemic" -- when the information comes from someone who has something to hide or sell. Not when I can walk out my own front door, pick up a telephone, or just observe reality and see there is a mismatch between what is said and what is happening.

Some general observations from the Quarantine Zone:

1) I have discovered just how much I smoke.

The fire bucket outside the front door I use as an ashtray is full of cigarette butts. I'm personally disgusted. Especially when I'm throwing out a trash bag with several HUNDRED butts accumulated over the course of three or four days, Time to quit.

2) I have noticed just how unvaried my diet has become This is mostly because of Mrs. Overlord, who is one of those people referred to as "a picky eater" (translation; a fucking pain in the ass about food). This is NOT due to any particular shortage or interruption in supply chains (the supermarkets seem reasonably stocked, even with fresh fruits and vegetables), but probably due to a change in shopping habits brought about The Shanghai Death Sentence.

Initially, when things were chaotic and shelves were being plundered by the "we're all gonna DIE!" mindset, I shopped on the principle of "get what you can, while you can get it", and subsequently filled the house with food I know Mrs. Overlord will eat, and eschewed my preferences. So, I stocked up on stuff that she'll eat, but which does not necessarily measure up to my standards or satisfy my need for variety and freshness.

When Mrs. Overlord complains -- I'm sick of meatloaf! -- and that's her favorite meal (with mashed potatoes) it's probably gotten very repetitive, indeed. I will endeavor to find some fresh fish today, and maybe load up on fruit.

3) I have just received, yesterday, four homemade face masks, constructed for me by a friend of my sister's. I am grateful for them, since I was spending $60 a box for disposable paper masks and these have the virtue that they can be washed, sterilized and reused. This is a huge help. I have a respiratory case in the house, already, and don't need to bring anything else home.

There are few (minor) complaints, however.

For a start, I gather fabric is in short supply. My masks all have a floral pattern. Three a lovely lime-green-on-black jungle motif, and the fourth is a lovely bouquet pattern of, I think, tea roses and wildflowers.

I certainly will NOT feel gay wearing these in public (smell that? It was sarcasm). But, desperate times call for desperate measures, and the first asshole who makes a comment is going to need one of Cuomo's not-available-so-be-careful-Numbnuts ventilators.

Also, I get the impression that all four of these masks began life as a brassiere. They have the right shape, the right texture, the right fabric to have once been lingerie, and I think I can detect a whiff of perfume. If so, bravo Madam, your husband is a very lucky man, indeed, and if there isn't a Mr-Mask-maker, call me.

4) Joe Biden is still alive? He's still running for president?

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