Random Posts

Monday, March 30, 2020

Beware of the Pot Lickers!

     According to the Urban Dictionary a “pot licker” is a derogatory reference for someone who is poor and would lick the bottom of the pot for all of the scraps and leftovers. 
    That’s not my understanding. I often heard it used to refer to someone who would lick a chamber pot. i.e. a nasty person. You might ask, who would do such a thing? 
    Well, just think of the idiots who are taking the “coronavirus challenge” and licking toilet seats...they are pot lickers in the true sense of the word. 
    Consider the irresponsible actions of people like the clip of Buddy Sluder that went viral. "If I get corona, I get corona. At the end of the day, I'm not gonna let it stop me from partying," That’s what he said at spring break in Miami. 
    And, think of the irresponsible Florida officials who didn’t take any action until after the break was over...financial reasons, you know. 
    This challenge appears to have started with pot licker Ava Louise, a 22-year-old who went viral for licking an airplane toilet seat and posting “Please RT this so people can know how to properly be sanitary on the airplane.” She was looking for fame and in 2019, she appeared on Dr. Phil’s television program; Dr. Phil likes sensationalism, too. 
     We’ve all seen weather people on television yelling, “Snow tonight. I’ll tell you at ten how it will affect your morning commute.” Dreading the possibility of driving in to work in a raging blizzard, we tune in at ten only to find out there’s a 10 percent chance that we could wake up to a cosmetic coating of snow.
     Someone posted a meme on Facebook stating: 112,036 recovered from the virus (and this number increases every minute)... try sharing this instead of the death toll! I got to thinking about this and decided there is a reason why no good news is reported. 
     According to the site I visited, here in the United States there have been 145,531 cases with 4,574 having recovered and 2,616 having died. This translates to 8 deaths per million people which is far, far lower than the 192 in Italy and 157 in Spain. Indeed, the death rate is low (easy to say assuming you or a loved one is not affected), the number of serious cases is low and many are recovering. 
     Media concentrates on the death toll because sensationalism sells. Officials concentrate on it because if they didn’t most people would not take the threat seriously and you’d have situations like happened in Florida. 

    There are just too many pot lickers, literal and figurative, and they would make things worse for the rest of us.  After all, if they don't care if they get sick, why would they care if they were coughing and blowing their infected snot and spit all over everybody else?

Friday, March 27, 2020

America’s Most Audacious Slimeball

     Jim Bakker. televangelist, entrepreneur, convicted fraudster, rapist and general all-around slimeball is at it again. 
     Bakker hosted the television program The PTL Club with his then wife Tammy Faye from 1974 to 1989. He also developed Heritage USA, a defunct Christian theme park in Fort Mill, South Carolina. 
     In the late 1980s he resigned from the ministry over a cover-up of hush money to church secretary Jessica Hahn for an alleged rape. Subsequent revelations of accounting fraud brought about felony charges, conviction, imprisonment, and divorce. 
     Bakker later remarried and returned to televangelism, founding Morningside Church and he hosts The Jim Bakker Show which focuses on the end times prophecy and pandering all sorts of goods from water bottles to generators to survival food designed to enable one to survive the Tribulation or a natural disaster. 
     He also offers, for $35 something called a “Pandemic Bundle.” This consists of The Great Influenza Book which appears to be the history of the influenza epidemic of WWI. Supposedly The Great Influenza is a tale of triumph amid tragedy, which provides us with a precise and sobering model as we confront the epidemics looming on our own horizon. This edition also brings the reader up to speed on the terrible threat of the avian flu and suggests ways in which we might head off another flu pandemic. There’s also a bonus...Satan’s End Time Plan Revealed 
     On his February 12 broadcast Bakker was touting a product called Silver Solution claiming it would be effective against the Coronavirus. His guest was somebody called a "natural health expert” named Sherrill Sellman. She implied that the liquid would likely be effective while admitting it hasn't been tested on this strain of the coronavirus, but it has been tested on other strains of the coronavirus and has been able to eliminate it within 12 hours. "Totally eliminate it. Kills it. Deactivates it.", she said. 
     She also claimed the stuff has been proven by the government that it has the ability to kill every pathogen it has ever been tested on, including SARS and HIV. Four 4-ounce bottles only cost you $80. 
     This, of course, violates state and federal law and as a result the state of Missouri filed a lawsuit against Bakker and his production company to stop them from advertising or selling Silver Solution and related products as treatments for the coronavirus. Missouri is the first state to file a lawsuit against Bakker, but others have also been warning him to stop peddling his snake oil. 
     Additionally, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the Federal Trade Commission warned Bakker that his website and Facebook page were selling "unapproved new drugs" in violation of the law. Bakker's website is no longer selling the solution and his company has refused to make any public comments.
     But, Bakker is not alone. The FDA has sent warnings to other companies that were selling colloidal silver, teas, tinctures or essential oils as treatments for the coronavirus. 
     Bakker’s actions aren’t surprising. In his second letter in the Bible that was written to an audience made up of various Churches in Asia Minor, the Apostle Peter warned his readers...many will follow their (false teachers) immoral ways and because of what they do, others will speak evil of (Christianity)...in their greed these false teachers will make a profit out of telling you made-up stories.

Thursday, March 26, 2020

How Do You Protect People From Their Own Stupidity?

     At what point can someone’s rights to make their own decisions about their own care be overridden? At what point should professionals intervene to force someone to accept help even if they don't want it? 
     I read recently that a test is being tried in Israel that includes LED lighting in the ground to alert people looking down at their phones that the light is red so they will not inadvertently walk into traffic.
     The terror of getting COVID-19 has caused havoc and in the process it has also caused a few people to show their utter stupidity. All these talking heads and "experts" tossing out buzzwords aren't helping. 
      My wife is in health care and a nurse friend told her of a recent experience while she was waiting in line to pick up her regular medicine at the pharmacy in the hospital where she works. A "lady" suddenly began yelling at her to keep her distance and berated her for even being out and told her that it was people like her that were responsible for the spread of this disease. The "lady's" actions were totally irrational. 
     Clinical trials of an anti-malaria drug, hydroxychloroquine, a drug used to treat malaria and some auto-immune conditions such as lupus in combination with the antibiotic azithromycin were set to begin in New York. Before the tests even began some "experts" claimed that existing evidence of the drug's effect on coronavirus is limited and largely anecdotal. I suspect some of this had to with the fact that President Trump who advocated hydroxychloroquine is so despised by some that they rebel against everything he says. 
     His enthusiasm for the drug, misplaced or not, has lead to some people blaming him for prompting the stockpiling of the drug and thereby limiting access to it for lupus patients and...get this...fatally misinformed attempts to self-medicate. 
     Also, apparently it's President Trump's fault that in an attempt to ward off the coronavirus, an Arizona couple in their 60s ingested chloroquine phosphate which killed the man and and landed his wife in critical care. They took the drug after hearing President Trump promote it...only it wasn't the same drug that the President was promoting. The lady stated she was in the pantry stacking dog food and just saw it sitting in the back shelf and thought it was stuff the President was talking about on TV. 
     In what can only be described as irresponsible journalism, NBC News interviewed the woman and slanted the article so it appeared to be the President's fault. She said, “My advice, is “don’t believe anything that the President says and his people because they don’t know what they’re talking about.” In other words, what happened to her and her husband is President Trump's fault, not their own!
     Forbes ran a slanted article, too. They stated President Trump incorrectly announced that the FDA had fast-tracked approval of the drugs chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine for treatment of COVID-19. President Trump added that, "The nice part is, it’s been around for a long time, so we know that if it—if things don’t go as planned, it’s not going to kill anybody.” 
     The next paragraph in the article confirmed that the couple actually took the wrong product. Now, there is a pharmaceutical version of chloroquine phosphate (Aralen); it is a very expensive drug used to treat or prevent malaria infections. It is also used to treat amebiasis. Generic chloroquine phosphate is covered by most Medicare and insurance plans and the lowest GoodRx price is around $74.38, but the average retail price of $494.50. 
     Again, this is not what these people took. They took what they thought was the drug President Trump mentioned and within thirty minutes they were in the hospital. 
     Prior to the Arizona couple's unfortunate mishap there had been a March headline from Valley News Live, a local news network serving TV stations in North Dakota that said "Fish tank additive may treat coronavirus." That headline was wrong, dead wrong. Fish tank cleaners containing chloroquine phosphate are not the same as the prescription drugs nor are they suitable for human consumption. 
     A number of years ago the publication, Advanced Aquarist, an online magazine designed to foster a greater appreciation of aquariums and aquatic life heralded three forms of chloroquine to treat fish diseases and its effectiveness in treating certain parasites in saltwater aquariums. Good news for aquarium owners. 
     Recently one online aquarium retailer was sold out and actually included in its terms of use that customers agree to use chloroquine "ONLY in the treatment and maintenance of ornamental fish. ... We agree not to intentionally divert these chemicals for any other use." 
     How can people who use a product used to treat fish and clean aquariums be protected from themselves and prevented from taking it to ward off the flu? They can't.

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Some people don’t get it

No matter how much money they make or how well known their names and faces may be, some people simply do not understand that while they might be a nice touch sometimes, our society really doesn’t need what they contribute. They are not essential. 

These people are:

Monday, March 23, 2020

Miscellaneous Flu Facts

     Flu season is an annually recurring period characterized by the prevalence of outbreaks of influenza (flu). The season occurs during the cold half of the year in each hemisphere. Influenza activity can sometimes be predicted. 
     While the beginning of major flu activity in each season varies by location, in any specific location these minor epidemics usually take about three weeks to peak, and another 3 weeks to significantly diminish. In the United States, the flu season is considered October through May. 
     An influenza pandemic is an epidemic of an influenza virus that spreads on a worldwide scale and infects a large proportion of the world population. In contrast to the regular seasonal epidemics of influenza, these pandemics occur irregularly – there have been about nine influenza pandemics during the last 300 years. Pandemics can cause a high level of mortality. For example, the 1918 Spanish flu pandemic - the worst in recorded history, was estimated to be responsible for the deaths of approximately 50–100 million people. 
     Influenza pandemics occur when a new strain of the influenza virus is transmitted to humans from another animal species. Species that are thought to be important in the emergence of new human strains are pigs, chickens and ducks. 
     These novel strains are unaffected by any immunity people may have to older strains of human influenza and can therefore spread extremely rapidly and infect very large numbers of people. 

According to an estimate by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there were: 

* approximately 45 million cases of the flu in the United States resulting in an estimated 810,000 flu-associated hospitalizations 
* estimated 61,000 flu-associated deaths. 
Flu killed and hospitalized more people in the United States in 2017-2018 than any seasonal influenza in decades. It sickened millions of people as overwhelmed hospitals pitched tents to treat patients. 
* estimated 29 million flu cases in the United States 
* 497,000 flu-related hospitalizations 
* 38,000 flu-related deaths
* estimated 34 million Americans got the flu 
* 710,000 were hospitalized
* about 56,000 died 
* 22,048 flu cases were reported through the end of 2012. 
By the same time the previous year, only 849 flu cases had been reported This flu season seemed especially bad.  Boston declared a public health emergency and a Pennsylvania hospital was forced to construct a tent to handle flu cases. 

2009 swine flu pandemic 
* lasted from January 2009 to August 2010 
* was the second of the two pandemics involving H1N1 influenza virus (the first being the 1918–1920 Spanish flu pandemic) 
* estimated 1.4 billion people worldwide contracted the illness – more than the number of people infected by the Spanish flu pandemic 
* about 150,000–575,000 fatalities 
A follow-up study done in September 2010 showed that the risk of serious illness resulting from the 2009 H1N1 flu was no higher than that of the yearly seasonal flu. 

How Is Pandemic Flu Different from Seasonal Flu?

Corona Virus Pandemic Update by country

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Social Distancing

     The actions taken by Dr. Max C. Starkloff of St. Louis during the Spanish-flu epidemic of 1918 would later be known as social distancing.
     In Philadelphia authorities decided to allow a Liberty Loan parade to raise money for the war effort and in late September two hundred thousand people marched up Broad Street and at parade’s end, listened to a concert by John Philip Sousa. Within three days, the cities’ hospitals were overflowing and thousands were dead with bodies stacked like cord wood. 

     However, in St. Louis officials took quick, extreme measures to close schools, churches, theaters, and playgrounds, now known as social distancing. 
     Dr. Starkloff was the St. Louis City Health Commissioner that led the way in 1918 with aggressive actions during the Spanish influenza pandemic. The H1N1 virus infected a third of the world’s population and killed 50 million worldwide.
     The first case of Spanish flu is believed to have been contracted at a military base in Kansas. With soldiers taking trains as they were deployed during World War I, it wasn’t long until the virus spread. Jefferson Barracks was hit first in St. Louis with influenza on October 1. Within a week, 800 soldiers were hospitalized. 
     With a population of 687,000 in 1918, St. Louis was the nation’s fourth largest city. Not long after the outbreak at Jefferson Barracks, those living in the city started suffering from influenza. 
     On October 7, Dr. Starkloff, with the backin g of Mayor Henry Kiel, began to shut down the city by closing city schools, theaters, movie houses and places of amusement. He also banned public gatherings of more than 20 people. 
     The following day, he closed churches earning him the ire of Archbishop John Glennon, who protested, but eventually the Archbishop temporarily suspended the weekly Mass. Dr. Starkloff also closed the municipal court, playgrounds, library reading rooms, pool halls, fraternal lodges and limited the use of public transportation which at the time meant streetcars. Downtown department stores operated under restricted hours. 
     The result: The per-capita death rate from influenza in St. Louis was half that of Philadelphia.

Hank Snow


     Clarence Eugene "Hank" Snow (May 9, 1914 – December 20, 1999) was a Canadian-American country music artist. Most popular in the 1950s, he had a career that spanned more than 50 years, he recorded 140 albums and charted more than 85 singles on the Billboard country charts from 1950 until 1980.
     Snow was an accomplished songwriter whose clear, baritone voice expressed a wide range of emotions. His music was rooted in his beginnings in small-town Nova Scotia where, as a frail, 80-pound youngster, he endured extreme poverty, beatings and psychological abuse as well as physically punishing labor during the Great Depression. Through it all, his musically talented mother provided the emotional support he needed to pursue his dream of becoming a famous entertainer like his idol, the country star, Jimmie Rodgers. 
     As a performer of traditional country music, Snow won numerous awards and is a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame, the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame and the Canadian Music Hall of Fame. The Hank Snow Museum in Liverpool, Nova Scotia, celebrates his life and work in a province where his fans still see him as an inspirational figure who triumphed over personal adversity to become one of the most influential artists in all of country music. 
     In 1996, Snow began experiencing respiratory problems which forced him to retire from performing. He died three years later at 12:30am on December 20, 1999, from heart failure at his Rainbow Ranch in Madison, Tennessee, and was interred in the Spring Hill Cemetery in Nashville, Tennessee.

Cities mentioned in the song are: 
Reno, Chicago, Fargo, Minnesota Buffalo, Toronto, Winslow, Sarasota Wichita, Tulsa, Ottawa, Oklahoma Tampa, Panama, Mattawa, La Paloma Bangor, Baltimore, Salvador, Amarillo Tocopilla, Barranquilla, and Padilla Boston, Charleston, Dayton, Louisiana Washington, Houston, Kingston, Texarkana Monterey, Faraday, Santa Fe, Tallapoosa Glen Rock, Black Rock, Little Rock, Oskaloosa Tennessee to Hennessey, Chicopee, Spirit Lake Grand Lake, Devil's Lake, Crater Lake Louisville, Nashville, Knoxville, Ombabika Schefferville, Jacksonville, Waterville, Costa Rica Pittsfield, Springfield, Bakersfield, Shreveport Hackensack, Cadillac, Fond du Lac, Davenport Idaho, Jellico, Argentina, Diamantina Pasadena, Catalina, Pittsburgh, Parkersburg, Gravelbourg, Colorado Ellensburg, Rexburg, Vicksburg, El Dorado Larimore, Admore, Haverstraw, Chatanika Chaska, Nebraska, Alaska, Opelaka Baraboo, Waterloo, Kalamazoo, Kansas City Sioux City, Cedar City, Dodge City,

Thursday, March 12, 2020

Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Where to spend next winter

   Where I live this winter was mild, crappy, but mild. Today it’s a balmy 53 degrees, but gloomy and dripping rain and it will continue to do so for the foreseeable future. So, where should you live for the winter? Here’s a synopsis of weather state by state. 

Alabama – Usually mild winters. 
Alaska - No other state has the vast geographical differences. In some places winters make North Dakota seem like paradise while others are closer to Washington. 
Arizona – In Flagstaff the average winter temperature is somewhere in the 20s. But most of Arizona has a dry desert day heat that is much warmer. 
Arkansas - Once in a great while, Old Man Winter strikes. 
California – With a state the size of Italy it’s hard to generalize, but San Francisco’s weather rarely changes and everyone in Los Angeles and San Diego enjoy nice weather year around. 
Colorado – They experiences some serious snowfall, but it’s a cause for celebration there. 
Connecticut – They enjoy the brutal New England winter. 
Delaware – Nobody knows. Who pays attention to Delaware except people who live there? 
Florida - It’s mostly a humid subtropical state with winters that tend to be mild.
Georgia - Freezing rain is common and tornadoes occur even in February, and when snow does hit, they shut down. 
Hawaii - the average temperature during the winter is 81. 
Idaho - If you live up in what’s know as the chimney it’s ugly just like it is in Canada. The rest of the state is somewhat warmer but winter is still brutal.
Illinois - Chicago winters are notoriously rough. Downstate things tend to be bad, but not quite as bad. 
Indiana – The NW corner of the state bordering Lake Michigan, gets the worst of it. Usually without warning a foot of snow can magically appear. 
Iowa - Snowstorms in the winter; 50 days of thunderstorms; an average of 47 tornadoes a year. It’s bad all the time in Iowa. 
Kansas – Winters are unpredictable and often ugly. 
Kentucky – People often think of it as a Southern state, but it’s weather is like Southern Ohio’s...crappy. 
Louisiana - It’s a decent state when it comes to dealing with the colder months.
Maryland - Cold and snowy except around Baltimore where it’s usually milder.
Massachusetts - Winters are slightly warmer on the coast, but they have heavier snowfall than in the slightly colder Western and Central part of the state.
Michigan - Winter lasts fout to six months from before Thanksgiving to past Easter. Expect to experience wearisome, gray, cold, drizzly, snowy weather.
Minnesota - Parts of northern Minnesota see up to 170 inches (that’s over 14 feet) of snow in a winter. If that’s not bad enough the temperature can plummet to minus 60 degrees. 
Mississippi - North Mississippi gets hit with a little snow on occasion, but it doesn’t last. 
Missouri - It’s far enough south to generally be removed from the worst, but up in the north part of the sate it’s just far enough north to get some bad winter blasts. 
Montana – An odd state because the Continental Divide creates differences in sunlight, wind, precipitation, and temperature, depending on whether you’re in the eastern or western part of the state. In either case, it’s not a noce place in the winter. 
Nebraska - Winters are moderate in western Nebraska thanks to the moderating effects of the chinook winds coming off the Rockies. In the East people just hunker down and wait it out. 
Nevada - Other than in the northern part of the state, Nevada is generally pretty well protected from the worst aspects of winter. 
New Hampshire - 70 inches of snow a year is the norm. It’s cold, too. 
New Jersey – Winters are miserable. 
New Mexico – It’s a lot like Colorado. 
New York – Depending on where you live winters can be mild or like in Buffalo where they get some 30 feet of lake-effect snow. 
North Carolina – the western mountain range acts like a shield preventing invasions by Midwestern winter weather. Winters are usually mild...except in those western mountains. 
North Dakota - Plan to spend the winter buried under snow. 
Maine – Mostly uninhabited forest land with brutal winters that never end except for a few weeks in July. The coast and the south does have more moderate winters though thanks to the Atlantic. 
North Dakota – Blizzards and cold. 
Ohio - the lake-effect snowstorms of Lake Erie along the Snowbelt can dump 3-4 feet of snow on the high ground east of Cleveland while the West side enjoys sunshine. On the other hand lake-effect snow can set up parallel to the coast and dump snow several miles inland, or it can form long narrow bands running N to S...you never know. Winds howling over the Lake out of Canada can be pretty cold. Then there are the moderate cold of the central lowlands and Columbus. But then you’ve got Cincinnati and what is basically Kentucky's subtropical humid climate. 
Oklahoma - The panhandle tends to experience the most cold while the rest of the state typically has at least one serious snow or ice storm per winter, but they don’t linger too long. 
Oregon – Like Washington except when there is 70-degree sunshine on the coast. 
Pennsylvania - In the east it’s not as bad as in the west where people just try to get through winter. 
Rhode Island – See Delaware! 
South Carolina - Outside of the Blue Ridge Mountains, most of the state is snow free for years at a time. The mild winters can be plagued with hurricanes. 
South Dakota – Nicer than North Dakota because the average high temperature during the winter months is four degrees higher than in North Dakota.
Tennessee - they occasionally get clipped by a blizzard, but the weather’s usually mild. 
Texas - West Texas is mostly arid desert where you can get the occasional blizzard that shuts down everything. East Texas is subtropical and humid even in the winter, and they get fog in Galveston where you can’t see things for days. Once in a while it will snow a couple of inches in Dallas and it shuts down the city. Except for the Northern Plains, the average temps in Texas in the winter usually stay in the mid-60s during the day. 
Utah – It’s a lot like Colorado and there’s a lot of sunshine and cold weather leisure activities. 
Vermont – Winters are brutal with most areas averaging around 8 feet of snow.
Virginia - Generally speaking, the winters tend to be a little rougher the closer you get to Washington, DC. The mountains also receive their share of snow.
West Virginia – Nasty snow storms in the mountains make is a bad place to be. Otherwise, it’s a nice place to be. 
Washington – Lots of bone chilling cold rain blowing sideways that is likely to turn into sleet then to ice. The depressing thing is that it never stops. 
Wisconsin – Snow and frigid temperatures. No redeeming qualities like ski resorts. 
Wyoming – Cold and snow, lots of it.