In the opening paragraph of his novel A Tale of Two Cities, Charles Dickens might as well have been talking about America’s battle with the COVID-19 Wuhan Virus when he penned the famous line, “It was the best of time and it was the worst of times.” That line describes the contrasts between the cities where the deaths are being recorded and the rest of the country where we see it only on TV and wonder why we must socially distance and wear a mask. It isn’t that we don’t care about what is happening in New York City and other places because we care deeply and want to help. It’s that the draconian control measures that have been imposed are weighing on our economy like a lead blanket protecting us from X-rays and the weight is crushing us.
The day needs to come very soon when our economy is allowed to re-open because we simply cannot afford for the shutdown to continue even into May. Our impatience is being fueled by watching both our bank balances and the predictions about how many people might die going down. At first the “experts” predicted that a million people could die. Then they predicted a quarter million deaths and now they are saying less than 100,000, yet those “experts” with the moving numbers are still respected. Even so, a groundswell of frustration is growing across America that is fueled by the daily downloads from Dr. Fauci and Dr. Birx telling everyone we must all continue suffering the economic devastation their guidance is producing. They are committing the ultimate act of medical malpractice because they are prescribing the same radical treatment used to prevent deaths in New York City for the rest of America when all we have is a hangnail.
President Trump has given us some hope of relief when he told us the time was nearing when we could begin taking steps back toward normal. He is assembling teams of advisors to guide how that will happen. However, that is going to take time when we can’t afford to wait. So, armed with an MBA and five decades of work experience I offer him the following pieces of advice from Mainstreet USA.
First, Mr. President, since you’re damned if you do and damned if you don’t in the eyes of your critics in the mainstream media, just do what is right and let the results speak for themselves.
Second, expand your picture of the impacts from COVID-19 to look outside of New York City. Yes, the numbers there are bad but there is a whole lot more to America than NYC and things are much better out here on Mainstreet USA. A whole lot of us are wondering where the virus is because we’re not seeing it.
Third, you need accurate numbers so we need you to direct the CDC to rescind their instruction to doctors to list the COVID-19 as the cause of death in every case where the person tested positive. Their directive skews the numbers to make the virus appear to be a far greater threat than it is and the imaginary numbers we’re being fed each day are spreading needless fear. You should also direct the CDC to review all death certificates listing COVID-19 as the cause of death and revise the documents to reflect the actual cause unless it can be demonstrated that the virus was the primary cause.
Fourth, your medical advisors warned you that COVID-19 was potentially going to be a mass killer but the ever-changing numbers we’re seeing each day are painting a very different picture so you need to season what they are saying not with a shake of salt but at least a handful of rock salt. They’re feeding us an ever-changing number stew that is seasoned with an overpowering taste of doomsday.
We’re not talking about the Ebola virus that kills something like 80% of the people who get infected, we’re talking about something much closer to a mild flu. Yes, when COVID-19 is mixed with one or more underlying conditions like obesity, diabetes, heart disease, lung disease or any other long-term disease process it has been demonstrating an amazing ability to create a “perfect storm” in the body where a person who might otherwise have died five or ten years from their underlying conditions instead dies this week. Yes, those deaths are tragic but they cannot be avoided. They are the inevitable casualties of war with disease and the containment efforts are almost powerless to prevent them. Focusing on New York City makes it look like Mainstreet USA is facing the same health threat when our greatest threat is the damage being done to us economically.
Fifth, you need to stop burdening our economic future by expanding the national debt in the name of giving relief to laid-off workers. Interest rates may be near zero today so they can only go up in the future. We’re not repaying a penny on our national debt so when those treasury bonds come due in the future they will be rolled-over at whatever the interest rates are then. Acting to give relief to laid-off workers today has enlarged the economic time bomb waiting to detonate in our future. As Mark Levin said it so well, “if massive runaway deficit spending makes a nation prosperous then Venezuela should be the richest nation on the planet.” Venezuela undertook decades of deficit spending in the name of helping the poor and it has produced the greatest mass suffering seen in the western hemisphere in a century. Don’t take us another step in that direction! Turn us loose and watch how the people address the problem without government action.
Sixth, you have proposed a suspension of the payroll tax through the rest of the year. Don’t just talk about it, do it! Even better, make the change permanent. You want us to be prosperous. Reducing how much the government takes from our paychecks will give us a great boost in restoring our prosperity.
Seventh, your “Achilles’ heel” is your habit of making deals with everyone. We can’t afford to have you make deals with Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer. Their objective is transforming America into a socialist nation so they have already leveraged worker aid bills to get morsels of their objectives enacted into law. We need you to resist both them and your habit of making deals with every fiber in your being. Give them nothing. Tell them what you want and make it clear that you will veto anything they send you that adds even a crumb of their socialist wishes. When they scream about it you need to take it to the American people and give us a chance to pressure them into doing what is right.
Last, we need a clear and short path allowing us to begin returning to normal. Immediately recommend relief on all restrictions on counties and cities where there is no problem. Where there is a problem set a clear threshold where the restrictions will be relieved. Most of all, announce the thresholds quickly. I suggest that all restrictions be relieved immediately where there have been ten or less COVID-19 hospital ICU admissions or less than two deaths on any day in the previous week. Don’t just relax the restrictions, eliminate them.
Mr. President, we need relief from the spreading economic devastation the battle against the COVID-19 virus is causing. We don’t need another government program. We need relief now so we can get restarted on our path to prosperity.
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