COVID-19 – Danger, Prevention, and Treatment

Right and left media alike shout through megaphones to their devoted fans, an echo chamber in which volume counts for more than truth. Neither side has a monopoly on facts, or science. Whom do you trust to understand the COVID-19 pandemic now?

Mainstream news organizations shriek every day about how Corona Virus Disease (COVID-19) is devastating the world and how the US government is fumbling America’s response. Liberals scream that we need to spend more money on the problem, and conservatives oppose governors who close businesses and order individuals to wear masks and stay home. Young adults stay home to escape the virus, despite being young, having no underlying medical problems, and not even knowing people who have been infected. Experts proclaim that “life will never be the same again” while ordinary Americans, like regular citizens from all countries, just want to do a good job at whatever work they do, support their families, and have a rewarding life. Fear is now fever, reporting is desperately biased, and the pandemic has become more political than viral. Many friends and partners in the MD Harris Institute ask about the crisis, and here are our most recent answers.

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Ballad of the Corona Virus

A medical musical tale of love and survival between an American man and a Chinese woman in the world of the new corona virus.

The Ballad of the Corona Virus (tune “Open Arms”, Journey)

Verse 1
Lying beside you, here in the dark
Feeling your fever so high
Weakly you touch me, pain so severe
Why did I stay for the night?
I thought it was true love, I wanted some fun
But now, I just want to run

Chorus
Cause it’s Corona virus, twelve thousand cases
It has got you, will it get to me too?
Oh why, did I, visit China?
Can I catch a plane, or a boat or a train, outta here?

Verse 2
In California, hospital bed
Aching and coughing up blood
In isolation – gloves, gowns, and masks
Chills come on me like a flood
Nurses and doctors, don’t know what to do
There’s no vaccination for me.

Chorus
Cause it’s Corona virus, often fatal
Waiting for doctors, insurance won’t cover
But soon my lady will arrive from Wuhan
I’m fading away, but we’ll beat you someday, Corona

 

US Foreign Policy and Donald Trump

Pundits, politicians, progressives, and prophets panic over Donald Trump’s “failures” in his foreign policy. They may wish to reconsider.

“Disaster!” media outlets howl when they discuss American foreign policy in the first year of the Presidency of Donald Trump. Some commentators bemoan the withdrawal and even decline of US power, while others rejoice to see the return of a multipolar, rather than a unipolar (US “hyperpower”) or bipolar (US and USSR, or perhaps China, as superpowers) world. Recently the Economist, a British news magazine, announced that Trump has made America and the world less safe.

Whatever one thinks of President Donald Trump, he or she must consider these breathless pronouncements in terms of history and geopolitical reality, not just in terms of modern events. In a speech to the House of Commons (1 March 1848), Viscount Lord Palmerston (1784-1865) said “We have no eternal allies, and we have no perpetual enemies. Our interests are eternal and perpetual, and those interests it is our duty to follow.”[1] He was right, and the permanent interests of nations are a surer guide to success on the international stage than the vagaries of the news cycle and the panic of political pundits.

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Consumer Product Safety

In my grandfather’s childhood in rural Arkansas, most of the food that he ate and the clothes that he wore were produced at home. His ancestors had built their own houses and furniture for generations, and store-bought goods were rare and expensive. While people knew little about foodborne illnesses and other hazards, they knew where the food and other products in their lives came from.

Such is not the case today. Our plates are filled with Indian rice, Honduran bananas, Japanese fish, or American wheat. We buy shirts from Mexico, cars from Germany, shoes from Italy, or electronics from China. Imported consumer goods are only as safe as the governments and producers in their country of origin require. A report in the New York Times stated,

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