Tuesday, April 7, 2020

The Civilized World

Every time that I reach a place of acceptance some part of me screams that is only because I've stopped paying attention, and it is at least partially true. One must look away from the incidence and death rates, even as they are starting to look encouraging. Meaning, this might not be the apocalyptic epidemic that it could have been. 

I have been tempted lately to use phrases like the civilized world when discussing it, just to take on that Ann-Coulter way of speaking. I try to get my friends to laugh at recipes of undercooked bat, but there are fewer and fewer takers on such lines of humor. Suffering does not produce immediate growth, it seems. Its fertilizing properties must occur mainly in reflection. 

To help the conversation along, I'll ask if the virus has affected any of the savages yet, and does anybody have any ideas as to why not? Now is the time to suggest genetic differences as a primary risk factor. It's starting to look like being an Italian-American was one of the dumber things anybody could have done, but my math-based models are not yet complete. There might be dumber people still out there waiting to be discovered. Being a German is, of course, suddenly much more appealing. I'll try to mention that as closely as possible to any mention of "national success" and "national unity" and "viral supremacy."

How do you explain the success of the unified national response from Germany?

Jesus. I will stop. Somebody will find this and not understand that I am kidding. Science tells us any coronavirus should not affect the Irish as much. They have not had a High King since the 12th century. Why, you might ask, aren't more scientists looking into this obvious connection? The answer is really quite simple: political history has not yet been shown to be an effective strategy against viruses. I maintain that they're just doing it wrong. It is the appeal to history that unites a people. Give them a shared meta-story and they will happily kill their neighbors to make it appear true. 

Fuck, even when I try to stop, I can't. It's because I've been online arguing with a conservative, so I have rehearsed these types of responses. Whenever he talks about the success of Trump's Chinese travel ban, I'll try to work in something about building a wall on our southern border as a sensible pandemic deterrent, etc. He only notices about half of them. He gets suspicious if it seems like we're agreeing on anything. It rots my mind, and what's left of his, but what the fuck. 

Some experts say that Trump's Chinese travel ban encouraged American nationals to rush home from the infected zones, with no tests awaiting them upon their arrival at America's shores. 

VoilĂ ! Ol' DT does it again. 

He always seems to find a way of making matters worse while still appealing to his base. It seems irrational until you look at his defender's responses. They are still touting his travel bans as a success, even though infection rates would indicate otherwise. I had to ask one friend about 25 times yesterday: Who is responsible for America's federal response to this epidemic? before he would finally admit that it is the president. 

He kept asking me what I would have done differently. I said: testing

Then, I had to ask why he felt America had more confirmed cases, by double, of any other nation. That's when speculation was suddenly permitted in the conversation. Something about Obama and Pelosi and Schiff entered into the equation. No surprises there. The president can not possibly be responsible for all of the disaster he inherited and has to live with every day. The logic is suffocatingly air-tight. 

Ah well, this is not the time for bitter partisan arguments. This is a time that we should rally around our leader. Anything less would be un-Amerified. 

I don't know why they're sending Americans $1200. Those Americans should be offering to pay an extra $1200, from every paycheck, to the conglomerate closest to their hearts. 

Maybe we can start a bailout movement: Thanks For Your Corporation!