COVID-19: "Post-COVID World," Losses Mount, and now "Phase Four?"

in GEMS8 months ago (edited)

Having last written about this "slow-moving hurricane" on March 23rd, where are we today? Listening to a growing chorus of all the different ways you can say "the world will not be the same," after this global pandemic is behind us.

AP News: Coronavirus claims an unexpected victim: Florida vegetables

Anyone wish to tell me "Oh, that's way too overstated @roleerob!"? Are you sure about that, dear reader?

Given my family's agricultural background, the news report above stood out to us. One of the many unintended (?) consequences, of what is being done in response to COVID-19, are massive disruptions to our various supply chains. In this case our food ...

While the "Almighty State" can pretend it can get away with printing money, what about all of the resulting losses of economic output from the "lockdown?" Can it also "print food?" No, of course it can't ...

Before continuing with this post, here is a bit of what I said in my first 3 COVID-19 posts:

  • Sunday, March 15th (Day 1):

    We are told the protection of our health is the one and only objective of all of these unprecedented actions. With no one questioning (at least that "we" are ever going to hear from ...) what the unintended (?) consequences might be. "We the sheeple" are dutifully falling in line and complying with all of it. With nary a bleat to be heard anywhere ... Because, of course, "everybody knows" ...

  • Friday, March 20th (Day 6):

    In response to Covid-19, the United States is proposing spending measures that have never been attempted before now. With much of the world appearing to be following their own version of the same "plan." Note well, dear reader, the "plan" is not to solve the almost insurmountable debt problems we already have, but instead drive them to staggering new heights.

  • Monday, March 23rd (Day 8):

    In war, people continue on with their lives. In the best way they can individually manage, under hellacious circumstances. In the midst of these tragic times, there are heroes. And there are those who fall under the simple label of "collateral damage" ...

    The overly used word "unprecedented" in these tumultuous times is now being replaced with ... wait for it ... Sacrifice! Of course. Soon enough, to be followed by another "S" word. Suffering.

________________________

Since writing these posts, I have spent less time "in here" and more time "out there" in the real world, with my immediate family, extended family, and friends. Dealing with the consequences of our government's decision to largely "lockdown" America.

This morning, with the close of ~ Day 30 yesterday, I will write a brief update on what's going on here around us, as our world continues to experience the global reaction to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Financial Consequences

Surely the trillions of USD thrown into the "war" on our "invisible enemy" has turned the tide in our favor. The Federal Reserve has taken a number of "unprecedented" steps. The U. S. Government has taken a number of "unprecedented" steps.

We're "good to go," right?

  • Stock market losses reached levels exceeding those of the Great Depression, as "unprecedented" market volatility shakes the global financial system.
  • The Federal Reserve promises to do "whatever it takes" to address the COVID-19 crisis, including the use of financial "bazookas" ...
  • By April 3rd, it was reported 24% of small businesses were already temporarily shut down. With the potential for another 40% to close within 2 to 3 weeks. Scariest of all:
    "Forty-three percent believe they have less than six months until a permanent shutdown is unavoidable. Nearly half of small businesses (46%) believe it will take the U.S. economy six months to a year to return to normal." - U. S. Chamber of Commerce
  • The previous ATH of 17 million Americans unemployed has now risen to 22 million, "as economy sinks" ...

Source: Yahoo! Finance post on "$349 billion coronavirus loan program for small businesses is out of money after 13 days"

Hmmm, I guess not. Well, has the Federal Reserve "thrown in the towel?" Has the U. S. Government said "enough!" and changed course? What would be your first guess, dear reader?

Phase Four" anyone?

Source: The Century Foundation post on "We Need a COVID-19 Phase 4 Relief Package. Here’s What Should Be In It."

Source: Business Insider post on "The next stimulus plan could include more checks for Americans.
Here's what else DC power players want to cram into the bill — and who would benefit most.
"

"Everyone" is coming "out of the woodwork" to weigh in on what should be included in Phase 4. In executing Phase 1, 2, and 3, our "fearless leaders" were merely "warming up in the bull pen." It is incredible the scope of what is being seriously proposed.

Even President Trump and the Republican Party leadership, decrying the Democrats adding a bunch of "non-essential" items to previous legislation, are now talking about using Phase 4 for all sorts of wonderful new ideas. Like, for example, completely rebuilding the infrastructure of America and spending trillions of USD more to do it ...

________________________

I won't spend any more of my or your valuable time to dig into further details because, as this is written, this legislation is once again "bogged down" behind the scenes in smoke-filled rooms, while our futures are being determined. With the inevitable state-selected "winners and losers" being strenuously debated back and forth ...

Supply Chain Consequences

In many countries around the world, we have deceived ourselves to think we can forever print money, creating "something out of nothing" and have it all turn out just fine. After all, if we don't look too closely, it has all been working out well so far, right? Modern Monetary Theory anyone?

Setting the supply of money aside, what about the supply of everything else? In this era of the remarkable complexity and interrelations amongst all the producers of these items? Commonly utilizing the principles of Kanban "just in time" inventory systems to keep costs at a minimum?

Can't we just "print" it? No ...

Growing food, for example, doesn't even pretend to lend itself to any of this nonsense at all. And if not efficiently distributed, once grown and ready to eat? It tends not to have a long shelf-life either. See the lead image and story above ...

In North America:

"Today, conventional wisdom is that the average city in North America has a three-day supply of fresh food (dried, canned and other preserved food supplies will last a bit longer). This, according to some, means that we are all only ever “nine meals from anarchy.” Luckily, North American grocery stores have sophisticated supply chains so no one is seriously suggesting that the panicked purchasing of the last few days that has emptied shelves will persist. Nevertheless, the systems we depend upon are, in many ways, fragile and inherently vulnerable."

The Conversation Post, 17 March 2020 [emphasis added mine]

Source: NPR post on "COVID-19 Threatens Food Supply Chain As Farms Worry About Workers Falling Ill"

Anyone even remotely familiar with the all-important agricultural industry knows we are entering the time of year to begin planting, for a new growing season. While heavy automation helps in a number of ways, it is not all automated. Laborers are needed.

Then, we will have the need to harvest. Again, while there are automated aspects of this mission-critical process, there is also a lot of manual labor involved, as referenced above. What is the "Almighty State" proposing to do about that?

I have obviously only barely scratched the surface of this topic. And focused only lightly on food, which is a universal supply issue. I haven't even started on other critical supply issues, e.g. medical supplies ...

It is enough to convey the general idea of how massive the challenges are we face in having chosen to "lock down" much of the world. The clock is ticking ...

________________________

How do we get out of this mess? Free people up to return to work! To pretend there is an alternative to that basic statement borders on insanity. Or worse ...

Having "locked down" much of the world, to supposedly protect us from COVID-19, how do we do that?

Source: Stat + News post on "Covid-19 ‘immunity certificates’: practical and ethical conundrums"

State-issued "Certificates of Immunity" anyone? No? Okay, how about "COVID Passports" then? Do you need more than a few moments, dear reader, to consider all the complexity involved in getting everyone tested, under some nightmarish new bureaucratic process?

Of course, only after a test has been developed that is:

  1. Reliably and consistently accurate, and
  2. Produced in sufficient quantities and efficiently distributed across the planet?

No pressure. Take all the time you need ...

Given how well all of the global response is working out so far, what could possibly go wrong ...

Global Consequences

With the United States having achieved the unenviable position of suffering the most ("honestly" reported?) COVID-19 deaths, China has slowly but steadily received more and more attention, due to its alleged role in its origin:

  • How accurately are deaths being reported worldwide, particularly in China?
  • Claims are growing louder and stronger that the Wuhan Virology Lab was the source of COVID-19.
  • Growing demand for accountability, all the way up to reports of consideration being given to "waiving" repayment of international loans provided by the Chinese, to recoup the "unprecedented" global costs of COIVD-19 and their cover-up of its seriousness, until it was too late.

Surely, the Chinese Communist Party and the Chinese people's President for Life, Xi Jinping, will have no problem, with whatever is decided. Right?

Source: National Review post on ""How to Make China Pay"

While America's financial losses have already been staggering, reportedly the conditions are even worse in other countries around the world.

  • Japan is in a "severe situation" and is "extremely depressed."
  • In the European Union, with a report that the "coronavirus outbreak is having a profoundly negative impact on people’s livelihoods, on companies of all sizes and on economic growth", the response appears to be similar to that of the United States.
  • Overall, the picture is grim with a report the "World economy in 2020 to suffer worst year since 1930s Great Depression ..."

We all have our perspectives on what it is like to participate with others "all over the world" in adding value to our Hive blockchain. In doing so, we can easily read the personal stories of others and the impact this pandemic is having on people "in here" and their families.

Many have already lost their jobs altogether, been laid off, or furloughed. This is at the end of approximately the first 30 days ... What does the future hold?

________________________

As stated in past writings, I have long been interested in history, in general, and military history, in particular. Have you ever read about some of the "sparks" resulting in outbreaks of full-fledged war?

In this "tinderbox" of problems, all over the world, do you think the seeds of World War III are being sown? While perhaps not so obvious today, what about the impact of growing shortages in the supply chains of needed goods all over the world? What about tomorrow?

There are already stories, even here on the Hive blockchain, over the impact of these shortages. Even though, at the moment, they are still relatively non-threatening. Again, what does the future hold?

Personal Impact

Is it possible, even in the relatively short time frame of 30 days, there is someone, somewhere in the world, whose lives have not been personally impacted by the global response to COVID-19?

Hard to imagine ...

  • The impact on my own family is growing:
    1. Even though we are theoretically in the "high risk" category ourselves, my beloved lifemate continues to faithfully serve daily in her role as a healthcare provider for the elderly, i.e. even older than we are. And definitely more fragile health-wise ...
    2. Three of our children are directly impacted by the "Paycheck Protection Program" [PPP]. 2 as business owners. The 3rd as an SBA Loan Officer for a bank (while their spouse has been indefinitely laid off). All have been overwhelmed by the complexity of compliance for obtaining the "free" money ...
    3. Another child, with the failure to find work and generate income, is facing the sale of their home and a move ...
  • A member of our church family passed away from complications linked to COVID-19, the only fatality in our circle of contacts.
  • Our church family is experiencing an increasing amount of stress in two directions - the emotional and mental impact on every type of "first responder" position held and the financial impact on those who are no longer employed.
  • Our own personal financial losses have been substantial ...
  • While contact via the remarkable digital devices we have available to us at this point in man's history are nice, they are simply incapable of satisfactorily replacing time with loved ones.

Source: Creator enriquelopezgarre on Pixabay

I am very thankful, in the midst of this gathering storm, for the closeness of my family and my friends. I hope you, dear reader, have close associations with others in your life. In whom you have trust and upon whom you can count to "be there," in bonding together, to help you get through what we are already experiencing.

And what is coming ...

________________________

Photo: "Spring" day, here at home, on 16 March 2020. Great day for posting ...


As a follower of Christ, I do not have any fear of the future. I am settled on knowing that God has ordained what is happening. And what is coming. The outcome is in His hands.

Closing

After only 30 days of "unprecedented" this, that, and the other thing, America is in a state of upheaval only matched (possibly) in history by times of an actual war. Right?

Yes, certainly to this "old warhorse," except for one "teeny weeny" difference:

We did this
to
ourselves!

As the losses continue to mount, in general, and the impact of major disruptions on our supply chains "come home to roost," in particular, I predict those finally starting to ask "what are we doing?" is going to grow dramatically in number.

It is very sobering to me to consider what people are going to feel compelled to do, as this crisis grows more acute. And what the "Almighty State" and our "fearless leaders" are then going to justify doing in response. All while we receive an increasing number of calls for and reports to prepare for a "new normal" in the "post-COVID" world ...

I’d love to hear any feedback you may be inspired to provide.

Respectfully,
Hivian @roleerob

🐝 🍯 🐝

________________________

P.S. As soon as "Spring" returns, I am really looking forward to getting back to work on our "Back to Eden" garden. Which now seems to be a far more important activity than when we started into it last summer. Here in America, during World War II, these were referred to as "victory gardens!"

P.P.S. As this is being published, there are reports President Trump is laying out the "guidelines" for "Opening up America Again" in three phases, which the 50 State Governors are to use in determining when to "reopen" their states and allow their citizens to return to work.

________________________

Posted using PeakD and “immutably enshrined in the Hive blockchain” on Thursday, 16 April 2020!


Interested in reading more of my related posts?

Lead Image Title, Link, & Summary
Day 1: COVID-19: Out of the News, Into our Lives at Home ...

Summary: With alarming speed, COVID-19, the "Coronavirus disease," went from the news in China to a pandemic here at home. What are the implications of the unprecedented response to it?

  • Impact at Home
  • Question of "Proportionality"
  • Unprecedented Disruption
  • Unintended (?) Consequences
Day 6: COVID-19: Pandemic Defense and "Helicopter Money"

Summary: How many times can a writer use the word unprecedented to describe what they are experiencing? Trillions of dollars promised, up to and including "helicopter money!"

  • Manna from Heaven
  • Off to War!
  • "Too big too fail!" Right?
  • "Financial Distancing"
Day 8: COVID-19: Gathering Storm of Looming Financial "Armageddon"

Summary: Under a scenario which could aptly be described as a Perfect Storm, "unprecedented" consequences of the "unprecedented" actions from the "Almighty" State continue to grow - on the 8th day of America's "lockdown."

  • War and "Collateral Damage"
  • Personal Impact


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Because the problem we face is political, the solution to our problem is political. Since 'the state' is causing currency to be devalued, undertake alternative to currency to store value. Since the state is causing food supplies to be disrupted, secure food supplies through alternative means. I would not count on victory gardens, as they are impossible to undertake covertly. It is lamentable but undeniable that we are provided plentiful examples of polities undertaken to deliberately prevent masses of civilians from growing, having stores of, and acquiring food from legally allowed, publicly overt means.

If having food become a crime, become a criminal. Prepare to do this in secret, is my best advice. If such secrecy is not necessary, good. If it is, not having secret sources of food will be fatal. It is also necessary to consider what will be done to folks that aren't starving if the state intends to starve us. Secret food supply mechanisms will be routed out, people will be prevented from going to tend guerrilla gardens, and worse.

As supply chains become disrupted, we need to cut our dependence on disruptable mechanisms for existential necessities, and if we intend to thrive, for more besides. Today 3D printing, aquaponics, CRISPR, and much more decentralization of means of production cut supply chains completely. In the past it has been more efficient due to economies of scale to depend on vast global networks of industry for products.

Modern technology makes individually producing our necessary goods and services more efficient in every field of industry today, and as these nascent mechanisms develop, this will become more true as time goes by. I believe this is teh actual impetus for the present imposition of global totalitarian tyranny, because this decentralization eliminates the parasitism that has funneled our production to a tiny minority of vampires that have done whatever it takes to seize control of industry and our life's blood.

The writing is on the wall. If technology continues to improve, individually owned means of production will continue to become more efficient, easier to use, and exponentially decrease the flow of wealth and power to the vampires that have instituted parasitic pipelines to flow our production to them.

Decentralization is literally freedom. Seize those means of production you find convenient today, and do not fail to do what is necessary to ensure existentially critical supplies remain available to you and yours no matter what policies are imposed, as becomes more obvious daily can become unimaginably different from what has been considered SOP just a month ago.

Up well before 🌄 (here) @valued-customer, first let me thank you for an "epic" (the "kids" today seem to love this word ...) comment. Deserves a post of its own, for your benefit, with a link to it in here on this post perhaps!

Second, I always value input, whether I agree with it or not, as long as it is civilly and respectfully (at least for the most part) stated. Yours certainly fits that description. Therefore, in my view, it adds value to this post, for the benefit of others who may read it. Someday ...

Beyond that, I suppose I could write my own post in response, but time does not permit that. We have points on which we largely agree and those on which we don't. Good communication is always beneficial, from my long life's experience, in at least reducing "the gap" on the latter, so maybe I'll just make a couple of brief points, each of which could be greatly expanded upon:

  • "... the problem we face is political ..." - From my system of belief, every problem we have is ultimately spiritual, as touched on briefly in the post I published last night. And it is all "down hill" from there, beginning with politics ...

  • "Decentralization is literally freedom." - Depending on how you define this, I would say not likely, as your input conveys support for the commonly used word "anarchy." Which, in turn, is contrary to what I believe to be "the natural order" of our world. Based upon hierarchies of authority. Which can be "good," but far too often are "bad" ...

The "natural order" ... In ancient times, we have the biblical record of the Hebrew people and details of their opportunity to live in a "decentralized" state of existence. They rejected it and clamored for a KING! So, they could be like everyone around them ...

In more recent history, based upon a proper appreciation for "the human condition," in their associated wisdom and integrity, our American Founding Fathers produced the greatest form of government seen. Described by the incomparable Benjamin Franklin, in response to a question about what had just been created by "consensus agreement" - "A Republic, if you can keep it ..." The greatest modern form of "decentralization" ... Which "we the people," much as people from ancient times, have demonstrated we will not do what is necessary "to keep it." We have progressively decimated all of the "checks and balances" established in 1787, to keep us free of the inevitable, tyrannical nature of centralized authority. As in ancient times, we clamor for the "Almighty State" to be our source of safety and security ...

In both instances, "we the people" suffer the consequences of their decisions. We are still, in my judgment, in only the very early stages of finding out what that is going to be ...


P.S. Interesting to me "in here" that what is left of the blessings the American people have historically experienced draws such admiration from our Korean friend, @silvergrifin007 ...

It is reading your kind responses to @silvergrifing007 that gained my regard for your writing and knowledge.

As to anarchy, hierarchy has always been necessary to our species because war disrupted security. Modern security technology that is able to be manufactured by individuals - and technology far in excess of what is presently available will be soon - eliminates this necessity.

Given that for most members of a hierarchy, it is a 'necessary evil', I reckon most folks will extract themselves as able.

You rule yourself every day. Everybody does. Autarchy is a fact of life. While I am familiar with the Bible, I am not willing to discard my God-given reason to worship what is in all likelihood a man deified in the Roman manner prior to his followers being used to conquer the world.

That is not a use to which I intend to be put.

Jesus was a great guy, and taught men like us how to live. That is the victory over the globalist tyranny I foresee, like a prophet of ancient days. Good folks making what they need and helping each other, and the hierarchical structures that profit parasites be damned.

Thanks for the courtesy of your reply, and know that mine is intended to encourage, not radicalize.

Be well.

Well @valued-customer ...

"It is reading your kind responses to @silvergrifing007 ..."

... it is kind of you, in turn, to ascribe some kindness to my efforts, as I am not accustomed to "hearing" that. While far from perfect, I do make a conscious effort, so thank you.

I appreciate you investing some time into a response. Whether I agree with what you have to say, I know you write "from the heart" and are very earnest in what appear to be your strongly held beliefs.

"... I foresee, like a prophet of ancient days."

[emphasis added mine]

This characterization of yourself underscores what I just wrote, from my perspective.

Beyond that, before deciding what (if any) more to say, I want to be crystal clear about what you intended to convey with these words:

"While I am familiar with the Bible, I am not willing to discard my God-given reason to worship what is in all likelihood a man deified in the Roman manner prior to his followers being used to conquer the world."

They are confusing to me. Would you mind expanding on this sentence?

Insofar as we are what we are, in order to cement our mutual understanding of that fact, I refer to what we are as God given. We have not created ourselves, but are provided to our selves to do with as we will.

My capacity to comprehend the significance of evidence based on my experience is not some denigration of God, nor denial of faith, in any way. It is as God given as my fingers or any other aspect of my existence. Therefore I am obligated to the Creator of that gift to me to use that capability forthrightly to interpret evidence. That is the purpose of reason and understanding we are availed.

In Rome at the turn of the common era, it was the common practice of that culture to deify great men upon their demise. This was done to Jesus, as Christianity was imposed on Rome and twisted into a weapon of imperial conquest that produced the Holy Roman Empire and that antithesis of Jesus' simple teaching of communal love and treating others no less kindly than oneself.

From the 12th Century and the genocide of the Albigensians, the weaponization of Christianity developed by the Catholic Church became refined into one of the most egregious cultures of torture and elimination of human rights in history, producing the Inquisition. We can observe parallels to our American government today, as the rhetoric of revolution and individual freedoms is twisted into support for a police state surveillance imperial institution that features indefinite arbitrary detention, torture, and assassination even of an American child named Awlaki without any accusation whatsoever of wrongdoing by US President Obama.

This is the source and etymology of Christianity today. It is not derived from the teachings of the Albigensians, because they were eliminated by genocide. The Reformation was a rejection of this weaponization, but was a response to that utterly Antichristian institutionalization that produced merely reformed institutionalization of Christianity, and was not a restoration of the original teaching of Jesus, which was simply to act personally to love the others in your community.

It is this demonstration of a good person, Jesus, of his loving and kind actions in life to bless his neighbors and community that is significant to we today, as those were acts mere men such as we ourselves can undertake, not the acts of an omnipotent and omniscient God whose pretense at suffering on a cross being tortured to death has zero relevance and meaning to mortal men. It is this desecration of Christianity and it's replacement with polytheism that has driven world conquering Empire that I cannot accede to against that gift of reason I am bound to honor by fully using it to understand these facts.

I find your inquiry regarding this point revelatory of your own cognizance of that blessing of intellectual functionality we are delivered of God, and the import of this particular point. I will but offer to recommend you undertake to debunk the individual reasons underlying this understanding of Christianity should you find insuperable it's ultimate conclusion, to best enable you to bless me with insightful criticism should you find it necessary to your own faith to refute my understanding.

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Food shortage is the next step. We have already seen headlines saying not to expect seeing much meat on the shelves in the following weeks. It will be the same for fruits and vegetables as the migrant workers from Mexico were not allow to come work. Therefore Canadians will soon see the effects of the lock down.
The current situation was described accurately in a movie made by Peter Joseph back in 2008, Zeitgeist Addendum. What seemed like a conspiracy theory them, starts looking more real now.

Yes @lymepoet. Any time the "Almighty State" decides to step in to the marketplace is a bad idea, from my perspective. The remarkable complexity and interrelations there are well beyond the reach of any bureaucracy to effectively and efficiently manage it.

Their attempts, to "charge ahead" anyway to fulfill their promises to "save us," always result in determining the "winners" and the "losers," as I briefly allude to in this post.

There is no historical evidence of which I am aware that proves otherwise. Failing to "learn from history" we are "condemned to repeat it." It is pathetic to me to witness the ongoing political "back and forth" going on, in an effort to pretend otherwise ...

Dear @roleerob, were you an agricultural businessman?

No @silvergrifin007. But both of our families were involved in agriculture ...

Plus, I enjoyed the blessing of taking care of our family farm for 2 seasons with two of my sons. I wrote about this experience in the "My Life as a Hay Farmer" post I wrote in Sept 2018.

@roleerob, do you live in montena state? Montena was famous for ranches and farms. It's amazing that you worked 12 hours a day. Indeed, America is vast and prosperous. It is a land blessed by God.

@silvergrifin007, to preserve my privacy, I have never shared what state I live in, let alone what city. As far as I am prepared to go, in having details like that "immutably enshrined" in the blockchain, is what you see in my profile. I live somewhere in the Rocky Mountain region of America.

"... you worked 12 hours a day."

Yes. I was blessed to work with two of my sons, drawing us closer together for what we were able to achieve together. Working close to the "good earth" was a very special life-time memory for us. I thank God for the opportunity to have lived it.

Ranches and farms are found all over, not just in Montana. In my beloved mountains, there are many hidden away places where they are found.

And, yes, I do believe America was a land blessed by God. In my view, very sad to say, I personally believe He is in the process of progressively removing that blessing, as we have not honored Him for who He is. What a pathetic spectacle we are subject to here every day, in the unfolding national response to COVID-19 ...

Dear @roleerob, I respect your privacy. Perhaps you are not the governor of the United States?
You looked like the king of America. Hahaha

When I look at the photos you post, I think it's roughly Montana, Wyoming. Utah, Colorado, Idaho, and New Mexico are as dry as the desert.
I always have a fun imagination in which city @roleerob, the king of America, lives in. Perhaps he is a high-ranking person.

I always imagine where the king of America lives.

Nope @silvergrifin007, not "governor," not "king," not "high ranking,"... Just "one of the masses" here in a country of ~ 360 million people ... 😉

@roleerob, i want to call you king of america. You are similar to the face of a kind king of Korea that Koreans want.
I want to make your nickname king of America. please. hahaha

I suppose you can call me anything you may wish @silvergrifin007 ... 🙃

Just be mindful, my forefathers fought a terrible war to be free of kings. Although we are currently well on our way to creating some new ones ... 😌

 8 months ago Reveal Comment