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Musings On The Precipice | William Thomas Online | William Thomas

Musings On The Precipice


wile-e-coyote-gravity




MUSINGS ON THE PRECIPICE

 

by William Thomas

 

 

Another unremarked casualty in all these goings-on are Corona beer brewers. They’re completely hooped. Because even though just about everybody at this point needs a drink, 83% of polled Americans believe quaffing Corona will give them – you guessed it – the coronavirus.

     Thing is, if you’re around 40-something and especially under 30, and you contract corona (the disease, not the beer) – chances are steep you ain’t gonna die. 

     At least the odds of survival – or even mild discmfort – used to be somewhere around 8 in 10 of those infected. So even without acting talents, you will be able to identify with professional castaway Tom Hanks and his wife, who report feeling a little lethargic and “achy”, after catching this globe-trotting bug in Oz. The dreaded microbe hasn’t put them under, Down Under. 

     Problem is, this contagion is a rocketship. Whatever the true death-rate per case-rate turns out to be  and it’s a heckuvalot higher right now in Italy, Iran and Spain than some other places – even credulity-straining 1% mortality rates for an entire population are going to result in deaths in the millions.


Italy demonstrates the exponential case growth model U.S. is following -Chris Martenson

Italy demonstrates exponential growth model the U.S. is following. Hospitals maxed-out March 14. -Chris Martenson


     Logarithmic graphs applicable to Europe and North America show it this way: 1,000 cases of active infection become 10,000 in 14 days. Then 100,000, in another 14 days. Unless the space aliens show up with a rescue fleet, next stop: 1 million confirmed cases by mid-April in countries outside of China. Like in the already freaking-out USA.

     With “draconian” quarantines in place, pandemics burning this hot tend to crash just as abruptly once  large enough percentage of a population becomes exposed, recovered and immune. The UK government is trying this “let it burn” approach, with the intention of trading a huge spike in infections and deaths up front for rapid burn-out on the backside.

     But with this novel coronavirus, is “herd immunity” even a thing? With some “recovered” persons becoming re-infected, it may take longer and with more casualties to achieve enough natural immunity to finally firewall this still steeply-rising pandemic. 

     At least the trigger-happy USA has now backed off from sending 20,000 closely-billeted troops – some of whom have tested positive  prior to deploying all across Europe over the next five months to join another 10,000 completely unhinged NATO soldiers in deterring a  Russian invasion”. 

     In fact, an exasperated Putin is already winning an oil price war that is wreaking total havoc on never-profitable American frackers and threatens to finish-off a whoppingly-indebted Ponzi-economy…


Deceptively few cases are followed by clusters - then an exponential BOOM! -Chris Martenson, Peak Prosperity


     Yup. It’s with media hyping a panic ripe for totalitarian exploitation, it’s total lunacy time. Not that the threat isn’t real. It’s just that a panicky populace and freaked-out Fed are throwing nitroglycerine onto the fire. With skyrocketing rates-of-infection, and at least 10 of every 100 actively-infected persons requiring weeks of hospital isolation and intensive care, we’re within days of swamping hospitals from Madrid and Milan to New York City. So forget tp and start stocking up with scalpels and baby aspirin. Because in cities across the USA, Europe and Iran, it looks like very shortly anyone else with a life-threatening emergency is going to be out of luck and probably out of time.   

     But only geezers are super-susceptible to CORVID-19, right? Wrong. Today's boxscores out of France and the Netherlands show half of confirmed cases under 60 and 50 respectively. (Including a Dutch 16-year-old placed in an induced coma to keep him alive.) 

     So why not double-down on denial and party? With beer-swilling, half-naked college students jamming Bourbon Street in New Orleans and some Florida and Texas beaches for an extended Spring break, figuring they’re immune  how many will carry the coronavirus to families back home? 

     Stay tuned. Right this second, if your age is somewhere between newborn and say, 15  and you are not obese (the highest risk factor) – you’re good. At least medically.

     Probably.

     Maybe.

     Mostly.

     For now.

     Except, oh right. The lungs of some “recovered” survivors are permanently reduced in capacity and painfully scarred.



Wile E. Coyote mascot -Will Thomas photo

For others assaulted by this never-before seen “novel” sequence of HIV-modified amino-acids, SARS-Cov-19 is totally huge news.

    I’m talkin’ about us elders-with-stents teetering on the high-side of the risk scale. You know. That precipitous place where you can look straight down through your toes like Wile-E-Coyote (my favorite mascot) into the abyss.

     Oh yes. Those of us still more-or-less functioning are closely watching the exponential explosion of this astonishingly contagious virus. Not exactly like a hawk, but more like the mouse the hawk is eyeing.

     The folks who were rolling their eyes and snickering at people like me who “panicked” early to avoid the rush and decided to keep our distance are now grappling in store aisles over the last pack of toilet paper. 


      Which is weird since, in a pinch, you can rig a makeshift bidet by sluicing your rear with water and a rinseable glove.

     But what do I know? A square of toilet paper will soon fetch a buck. (Whatever that'll be worth…) So who’s crying now?



Wilma Flintstone taking a call

 

I was just on the phone with someone I hold dear, because we often disagree and I appreciate having my pet assumptions challenged.

     Apparently likewise, since she keeps ringing me up to compare astonishments over this worldwide pandemic pandemonium. And we both go: Even though death rates remain low, known cases are doubling every 72 hours. 

     Thanks to testing barely started so late herds of micro-critters have already fled a cobwebbed barn, many many more covid carriers remain undetected in the Greatest Country In A Wounded World – where greedy oligarchs thought their tottering cash-cow so exceptionally immune to their best mismanagement, they never considered prepping on behalf of all those deplorables, back when China started convulsing.

     So now, despite a promised short-term bail-out already clawed back, tens of millions of Americans who need that next paycheck to make their next payments are still going to work and unwittingly spreading this stealth-virus. Or staying home and crashing the no-longer-globe-girdling consumer economy. And suddenly, life-as-we’ve-always-assumed-its-continuance... isn’t. And the next remake of Contagion won't include a happy outcome.

     Then my wickedly smart friend and I both simultaneously exclaim: “This is only the beginning!” 

     (Or the end for a lot of old folks with “pre-existing conditions” – the newest pejorative meaning, “soon dead.”)

     But hey, kids, the blue-rinse contingent isn’t off this planet yet. And we’ve learned some lessons along the way you young scallywags would be well-advised to heed, lest you add to the woes a few obscenely-wealthy imposters have so cleverly arranged for everyone. Including themselves.

     Like whatever happened to ducking? Or turning the steering wheel before hitting the tree? I know. I know. This means actually paying attention to what’s going on around you. And you can’t do that while updating your online persona and staring down at your hand.

     So then we both go again: “This is only mid-March!” 

    We’re in this much trouble already and the best guessers “believe” that this hopped-up virus will stop pushing over everybody’s applecart by May? Or maybe June. Okay, possibly July. How much irrecoverable damage will accrue by then? If, that is, summer’s tardy heat arrives to “hopefully” make this pesky pathogen lethargic.

     Don’t wait for it, though. Cases are currently spiking in Malaysia (96F).   

     

UPDATE March 16:

Truth is, nobody knows where this is heading. But it national epidemcis don’t have to keep heading where they already are for much longer. And yes, other pandemic pundits are predicting an 18-month run for what could be be just the first wave of this strikingly adaptable coronavirus. But this is unlikely, if job-killing social distancing, travel bans and near-total testing can be maintained for many months to come. (Which could be difficult since this three-pronged response isn’t happening yet outside of China, South Korea and Singapore.) 

     Long before extended countrywide lockdowns and testing corral Covid, there won’t be a single functioning economy on this already-insolvent (in so many ways) planet. But there will be unsupportable loads and loads of additional crushing debt. Which could foster an intensificaton of “emergency" totalitarian tactics among governments facing an outraged citizenry.

     Right now, we’re in free-fall along with Wile E. 

     “Where is the bottom?” a market expert was asked. 

     His reply: “There is no bottom.” 

     Bad news for all those trickster coyotes who’ve only been fooling themselves. 

    

 

Wile-E-Coyote-help


We’re already looking at extremely rapid social and economic dislocation across all class boundaries. Which, we can be sure, is about to piss off a lot of heavily-armed Americans, who will not tolerate being shafted and locked-down – while all the fat-cats fly off to their tropical bunkers.

     Too late now. Cascading bankruptcies among delivery people, irreplaceable small suppliers, college students, and all the essential service providers we took for granted, mean many employment niches will vanish like that gray smear across ancient sediments demarking the Great Permian Wipeout.

     Did I neglect to mention total financial collapse intersecting a mass extinction event and increasingly virulent climate chaos?

     Hopi seers forecast a Great Purification. They said we’ve gone so far astray from the Creative force that provides our every breath, this reset will be a good thing. 

    Right now, that's a hard sell. But “hoping” everything will return to the normally abnormal before inventories run out in another few weeks is as useful as waving a lucky charm in front of an oncoming locomotive. The comforting thought that long-idled factories and rusty supply chains will magically come back online by flipping a few switches is going to prove just as chimerical as the delusions which got us into this perilous predicament.

     Once again, reality is about to call out everybody still indulging in magical thinking.

     Not that anyone actually knows what’s going down. Or where this massive derailment is heading. What we do know, is that a train wreck is bad for everyone onboard. 


Real wiley coyote


To gauge how desperate some folks are already becoming, just notice how often public officials and pundits online are uttering the word, “hope” and invoking their favorite god. Turning to an invisible dad to save us is bound to test everyone's faith as this corona hangover lingers. Because all this fervent beseeching overlooks the small point that every iteration of humanity’s most legendary Superhero – going back to the Pharoahs and probably long before – has sternly insisted that supplicants must be worthy of saving. Looking at the mess we’ve made, I’m guessing few of us actually qualifies for divine intervention.

     Or rescue by the aforementioned space aliens aboard their plague ships.

     This is not the time to argue fundamentalist beliefs. Or mention that almost all human introspection and interaction – from strangers and spouses to nations and financial markets that won’t do what we tell them – is projection.

     In other words, delusion.

     Or what the Buddhists like to call, “a dream within a dream.”

     At least, until the next time we stub our toe. And since death is the ultimate toe-snub, we geezers and geezerettes would really appreciate less pandemic-shaming over our hard-won, experience-based calls for a more prudent perspective going forward.

     Or more likely, backwards to simpler pre-screen times all you young whippersnappers never learned to navigate.

     Whatever comes next in this embodiment, plan on drastic deletion of every illusion you once cherished. Because, yep, when the shelves stay empty, this will be a very Big Deal indeed.

 

William Thomas

March 15-17, 2020



 发件人     William Thomas 2019