“I don’t take responsibility at all.” March 13, 2020
“When somebody’s the president of the United States, the authority is total.” April 13, 2020
COVID-19 is real, and still spreading out-of-control across America because the US government (at every level) has done little-to-nothing to stop it. This is what’s happening everywhere. Therefore, we need to maintain social distancing to slow the virus spread, until testing & contact tracing can be widely done, and a vaccine developed. In the meantime, it’s time for a revolution.
Governments are using this coronavirus crisis (for which capitalism is responsible) to employ more authoritarian measures. Their primary concern is getting us back to work when it isn’t safe, because to them, profits matter more than lives.
If what happened with oil last week, when it plunged to -$27 a barrel was a “pure freak of markets,” then what is milk dumping & plowing harvested crops into the ground about, and why is it still going on? This is nothing less than sabotaging necessary food supplies, which are already needed in many places, in order to keep prices artificially high. This means more taxpayer subsidies for agri-business, and more tax-payer funded profits for speculators. This is all criminal activity, by any rational definition.
Doctors are unappreciated & overworked heroes who are finally getting their due with the public. Those who actually work in it, already knew. For a long time, doctors have been coerced into working at the mandates of insurance conglomerates, hospital chains & big pharma. For example: if insurance doesn’t cover it, then the patient doesn’t get that treatment, due to affordability. Conglomerates take the biggest profits in the field, from equipment & supplies, to office build-out, and billing patient treatment. Patients are now sicker than ever.
Most recent physician & dental graduates owe student loans. Therefore they are coerced to work for these corporate chains as new graduates, since they lack the experience & resources to open up a solo private practice. That’s why independent doctor offices have largely vanished. Most physicians are contracted corporately, and trained (in the real world) to prescribe pharmaceuticals for patient treatment, which can be life-saving, but also creates side-effects, chemical dependency & enabling of disease. And profits.
Today’s doctors & health care staff are mostly working class. They are facing an unprecedented situation, either on the front lines (above), or quarantined because they are non-essential. I’m an independent contractor dentist, and I need the work, but I’m non-essential right now, so I stay home.
There are a few misguided owner doctors with non-essential practices who are pressuring their staff to re-open. They are in the minority, but yell the loudest. We are led to believe there are more of them than there actually are. It’s bottom lines & politics that are driving them. The problem is that an owner risks wiping out staff & patients with a deadly virus, which isn’t a practice builder.
It’s highly risky, with little pay-off, as most people aren’t going out for elective stuff these days. Those who will, are the ones who don’t practice best hygiene & social distancing, so they are more likely to be infected with COVID-19. This is the deadly game business owners play if they attempt to re-open early. It puts the staff in a tough position where they have to choose between ethics & safety, and a job. I professionally recommend staying closed, for the best of all. Everyone is going bankrupt here anyways, so stop your own crying. It’s selfish.
Dentistry is one of the most hazardous professions in the world right now. Practicing dentists go into people’s mouths, and cut on hard & soft tissue to treat diseases such as tooth decay, periodontitis, and occlusal disorders. Dental surgery creates an aerosol contaminated with saliva, blood, bacteria & viruses. The biggest risk typically is hepatitis, HIV, TB, and the seasonal flu.
Unless the operator is wearing a “spacesuit” for protection, that doctor is being exposed to every disease the patient has. The same for the assistants & hygienists. With a novel coronavirus now at a global pandemic level, this means medical & dental surgery have been changed forever. It means one procedure can infect an entire office. The numbers I’ve seen predict a 90+% risk for dental operators, if a patient is infected with COVID-19, without proper PPE. Cutting back on unnecessary procedures is the future of medicine, including dentistry. Tighter medical screening will be another.
Science is rigid for a reason. There are still too many idiots in power who think the laws of science can be mutated for political convenience. The entire ruling establishment is desperate to get workers back to work. It needs us for the surplus value it steals, which is its life-blood. A massive injection of trillions of electronically printed dollars was just handed to Wall Street, but it’s only enough to last a few more weeks– at best.
The oligarchy needs this fake economy to resume. But the problem is, 1) it doesn’t work for the vast majority; and 2) it is unsustainable for human life. In my rough estimation there are currently worker shutdowns in most industries, with about 1/3 of “non-essential workers” still laboring under the whip. This is the number over which the on-going war between capitalists & revolutionists will be fought. May & June will be deciding months.
I’m even more optimistic than before, because it has just been announced that NASCAR plans to be racing again, starting on May 17 at Darlington Raceway in South Carolina. There are to be seven (7) NASCAR events in May; four Cup Series, two Xfinity, and one Truck Series.
NASCAR had the lead going into this coronavirus shutdown, which I discussed in an earlier piece, due to the fact that it is a technology-driven sport. NASCAR equipped all its top drivers with state-of-the-art simulators in their homes, and encouraged them to join iRacing– for the good of the sport. After a promising first few weeks, the sponsors started getting in on the action, which is never good. First, Bubba Wallace, who isn’t too keen on video games, quit a virtual race early on, and was dropped by his sponsor, Blue-Emu.
Then its brightest, most clean-cut young driver, Kyle Larson, dropped the N-word during an iRace, and he has since been dropped by NASCAR & all his sponsors. Matt Kenseth has popped out of retirement again, and is scheduled to replace Kyle Larson in the #42 car on May 17 at Darlington, SC.
With all the advantages NASCAR had in the early stages of this global coronavirus shutdown, it hurt itself much more than it helped itself. That’s why I’m optimistic about NASCAR failing in May. A lot of people are going to get sick & possibly die, unnecessarily, but that’s a price they are willing to pay. These elitist blow-hards & rednecks never think of the doctors & medical staff that will be expected to take care of them due to their recklessness.
As for every athlete, in every other sport in existence, you are all non-essential workers. What you need to acknowledge is that you need to have fans who care, otherwise there is no prize money or glory. You need service personnel everywhere to maintain your rock-star personas, so maybe you aren’t such rock-stars after all? Maybe it’s the people who have made it possible for celebrities to succeed & stay healthy who deserve the love? But we aren’t getting any in the media. They are our biggest haters.
As for Election 2020, not much new, huh? Except that Trump bankrupted the economy by failing to prepare for coronavirus, and then there was a bi-partisan bailout for only the rich– again. They don’t have to go back to work, but they are the ones behind this campaign to get everyone else to go back to work. They don’t even know what work is. Still no politicians out campaigning in public, so how can we believe that it is safe?
Laurence Olivier: Is it safe?
Ruling class: It’s very safe. It’s so safe you wouldn’t believe it.
Global science: No, it’s not safe. It’s very dangerous. Be careful.