100,000 PLUS

Coronavirus finally made it. One hunded thousand plus deaths in the United States alone!

Nothing to be proud of. Very possible, no, probable, the number would not have been reached had Trump accepted the virus was a fact and moved swiftly.

It is amazing how swiftly coronavirus moved. Less than 100 dead March 1. In 3 months time, 100,000.

We mourn. The entire Nation. Except perhaps Trump and some of his cohorts. The Nation heard no words of grief as were expressed by Biden yesterday. No words in any fashion. The man lacks empathy. He does not care for that which he should. No matter what he may think, life is more important than the economy.

Large white refrigerated trucks still stand on some streets of New York. Filled with up to 100 dead bodies. Waiting for funeral home and crematorium personnel to become available to care for their remains.

The trucks are referred to as “morgue trucks.” People passing by know what they are. Cabs not attached. Merely the trailer sitting by the curb. The whirring sound of air conditioning can be heard. The green light shining to identify the trailer’s cargo.

While life has ended for those inside the trailers, life goes on outside. New York City on the move. Vehicles, pedestrians, kids playing, etc.

Not callousness. Merely what is.

A personal observation. Things are bad now. They will get worse on occasion. Life will return without the virus at some point. Recovery will not be over night, however. It will take longer for things to get better than it did for them to get bad.

Life at that point will not be the same. The country will have gone through an excruciating mind boggling experience. Yesterday’s normal will be no more.

I cannot tell you what it will be. We all have to wait and see.

Bad things seem to have a repetitive life. Not precisely the same. The same nevertheless.

Take for example 2 major epidemics in 100 years. The 1918 flu and 2020 coronavirus.

Some similarities.

At the beginning of each, some countries failed to reveal the problem or minimized the numbers of those affected.

World War I was on going. Nations involved kept quiet about this flu thing that was causing the people to become sick and die. Even the U.S.

The flu situation was a very close kept secret. More so than Covid-19.

When news of the flu epidemic broke, nations blamed each other as having caused the problem.

The flu was a greater scourge. It infected one third of the world population. In 2 years, 50 million people died.

Trump acted in a similar fashion. He first denied. Then lied about the numbers. Blamed another country as having been the cause.

Trump’s twisted mind and tongue  became evident once again with this conspiracy thing regarding Scarborough and a female staff member that died in Scarborough’s Congressional office in 2001.

The insinuation an affair between the young lady and Scarborough and Scarborough having somehow been involved in her death.

A few days ago, Trump lied in a tweet or two concerning the situation. He lied about something 19 years old and never an issue. The accusation an affair and a murder not true.

Trump has 80 million tweet followers. Most if not all read the accusation. It spread like wildfire into the media.

The young lady was Lisa Klausutis.

Her husband wrote to Twitter’s CEO Jack Dorsey. Quotes from his e-mail tell the story.

“Please delete these tweets. My wife deserves better.”

“I’m asking you to intervene in this instance because the President of the United States has taken something that does not belong to him and perverted it for perceived political gain.”

Lisa’s husband also spelled out the cause of her death: She had an “undiagnosed heart condition, fell and hit her head on her desk at work.”

An old axiom comes to mind regarding a lie and how swiftly one can do damage: “A lie can travel halfway around the world while truth is still getting its shoes on.”

Donald is the Master of the Lie.

United and Silver Airlines are suspending service to Key West till at least September 30. Perhaps even longer. The reason given passenger decline because of the coronavirus pandemic.

It is believed the necessary signatures on 3 petitions to limit the number and size of cruise ships has been achieved. The referendum will appear on the November ballot.

The student loan debt is $1.68 trillion. A big portion is not being repaid. The debt remaining static. Covid-19 making it worse.

A second storm reached hurricane status. Ergo, received a name. Bertha.

Bertha not a problem for the Keys. It made landfall in South Carolina. A tropical storm. Winds and flooding.

Bertha hit “fast and furious.” Took only 2 hours to hit after it was determined to be a problem.

I finally figured out who May Jonson’s love is. Everest. The man presently working in Miami.

May preferred to him in her diary of this date in 1896. She received a letter from “…..my darling Everest.”

I suspected Miguel was her love. She was often out and about with him in Key West. They frequently danced together at La Brisa.

This is day 78 of my self-quarantine. I am beginning to think I would like to get out.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

 

 

 

KEY WEST CHICKENS

First, a Marathon chicken. Then, Key West chickens.

Forty three year old Nicholas Chew was having an argument in Marathon with his girl friend. Some chickens nearby were clamoring away. The noise was aggravating him. He kicked one of the chickens.

The chicken was hobbling on one leg and having trouble breathing. His girl friend called the police. Chew was arrested for animal cruelty.

The chicken was taken to the Marathon Animal Hospital. Diagnosis 4 broken ribs.

A witness to the kicking said Chew kicked the chicken like a football player would kick a field goal.

The Key West wild chicken population is becoming a problem again. The City says too many of them.

The City blames tourists. They feed the chickens. The chickens smart. They know a great home when they see it!

The City says the chickens are bigger as a result.

The tourist food is not required to keep the chickens full. They love bugs and there are enough bugs in Key West to accommodate their gastronomical needs.

Key West works at limiting the chicken population. Since 2009, 15,000 chickens have been captured and relocated to the mainland. Nevertheless, the number continues to grow.

A contributing factor is the rooster’s sex drive. Phenomenal! Whenever you hear a rooster cock a doodle do, he is not trying wake you up. They cock a doodle do all day.

Rather it is their way of telling the hens they want sex. Watch when you her the rooster’s call nearby. The hen(s) immediately run the other way.

My recollection is the gestation period is 29 days. A lot of sex means a lot of new baby chicks.

I don’t particularly like the chickens. They are dirty, disease ridden, in the way, and the roosters too noisy.

However, they are here to stay whether I like it or not!

Jimmy Buffett’s first studio recording in 7 years is out. “Life On The Flip Side.”

Typical Jimmy Buffett. Brings sunshine into darkness. The recording has been described as “equal parts of seduction and absurdity.”

Key West reopens monday June 1.

Covid-19 has been kept in control in the Keys. There has been a slight rise since U.S. 1 has reopened and certain activities in Key West also. The new numbers for the entire Keys are 107 cases, 4 deaths. Key West has the highest numbers of cases. Forty one. No Key West deaths.

Once Key West opens June 1, the hordes will come. As a result, 4-6 weeks later the coronavirus numbers will show a significant increase.

Unfortunately, we have to learn the hard way.

The world’s most prolific tweeter has been taken to task. Tweet announced yesterday Trump will be “fact checked.” About time! He has used Tweet to lie thousands of times.

Two situations gave rise to Tweet finally doing the right thing.

The first Trump’s continued condemnation of California’s moving towards a written ballot also. Fraudulent cried Trump. Elections will be rigged!

Not true. Trump knows it, the people know it, and Tweet knows it.

The second problem arose friday. Trump in effect suggested Joe Scarborough of Morning Joe fame might have been involved in a 2001 murder and there has been a conspiracy to hide the fact.

Lisa Klausutis was a female staffer in Scarborough’s then Congressional office in Washington. She fell, banged her head and died. Scarborough not even in the office at the time.

Nineteen years later, Trump is trying to make something out of nothing.

The young lady’s family has become involved. Her widower husband contacted Tweet’s CEO and ask him to delete the baseless conspiracy theory. Trump’s conspiracy accusation was disrupting the family.

Trump does not seem to care. He spoke later yesterday and rementioned it. Also said the matter should be investigated as there was no statue of limitations.

France has banned hydroxychloroquine as a cure for coronavirus.

Although there has been no formal banning in the U.S., I was under the impression that American hospitals  had abandoned the use of the drug also.

It has.

Not in a Virginia Veterans’ Hospital, however. Still being used as a treatment for coronavirus. Why? Does Trump being President have anything to do with it?

Brazil President Bolsonaro and Trump are both cut from the same bolt of cloth. Authoritarian. Know everything.

Bolsonaro has begun the destruction of the Amazon. Slaughters the forest. Lumber can be sold. The raw land mined for minerals.

A move Trump would make.

The two are on the same wavelength when it comes to coronavirus. Non-believers. Bolsonaro even worse than Trump.

As result, the virus has taken hold in Brazil. Cases number 391,000. Deaths 24, 512. The rise a recent surge.

Testing and masks a big problem. Not available.

Bolanaros keeps telling the people the virus is no problem. Sound familiar?

A Brazilian think tank official said, “If he stays in power, more people will die.”

There is talk the people may overthrow him.

Coronavirus has affected living creatures other than humans in one fashion or another.

In the U.S., city rats have gone “cannibalistic.” Restaurants are closed. A primary source of food. Rats solved the problem by warring in groups. The winning team eating the losing team.

The rats have graduated. They now eat their young, their children.

The CDC warns rats are becoming aggressive in their search for new food sources and humans should be aware and careful.

It is clear 20 year old May Johnson has a bot friend. I have wondered who. Could it be Everest. He apparently in living and working in the Miami area. The two have been writing to each other.

Enough for now.

Enjoy your day!

SHADES OF THE KLU KLUX KLAN

The bad guys of the old South ride again! No white face coverings or robes. Proud of the wrongdoing being perpetrated.

I have a constant fear as to where these right wing protests are going. Where will the protests end? Is death required? Especially a dramatic one?

Andy Beshear is the Democratic Governor of Kentucky.

A right wing group is active in Kentucky. Protesters. Avowed keepers of the American way. Whatever that means.

The group is the Right Wing Anti-Protesters. The name itself confusing.

They hung Governor Beshear in effigy Sunday. From a tree in front of the Governor’s mansion. The protest had begun downtown and then a group marched to the Governor’s mansion. Yelling and carrying signs: “Take Back Kentucky!”

There was a sign on the effigy containing a message: “Sic semper tyrannis.” Latin for “thus always to tyrants.” The significance of the words is that they are claimed to have been said by John Wilkes Booth following the assassination of Abraham Lincoln.

What next? Protests have a way of moving forward. Some could take them a step too far. Will a group tar and feather an elected oficial they disagree with? Then ride him out of town on a rail or mule as in the Old West.

If they get that far, the next step certainly is to hang for real the elected official. Perhaps do so without even tarring and feathering him.

What if the Governor is a woman? I doubt it would make any difference.

There is another alternative. Just shoot the elected official. Don’t screw around with preliminaries.

Trump bears a good share of responsibility for what is going on. He has been disregarding even his own “guidelines.” Those protesting were crazies even before Trump’s election. Now however they have a leader who thinks as they do. They’ve gone public. They remind me of bugs coming out of the woodwork.

Key West is actually a small town. Out of season around 28,000 residents.

Key West is a very patriotic community. People respond to just about everything. From helping neighbors following a hurricane to understanding and respecting the American flag. I sometime think Key West is 50-100 years behind the rest of the country.

An example are the some of those killed when the USS Maine exploded in Havana harbor in 1898. A goodly number are buried in a special section of the cemetery. The community their relatives. The community keeping the grave site neat and tidy.

Guy de Boer ran in a photo yesterday in KONK Life E-Blast of a portion of the Maine section. The American flag neatly placed before each head stone. Two Key West natives walking among the head stones: Two Key West chickens, a rooster and a hen.

We ARE more than one human family!

No one wants to listen. Even in Key West over the holiday weekend.

People were out and about. Distancing forgotten. Bars removed stools. Made no difference to customers who stood shoulder to shoulder.

And Key West has not yet opened to tourists! They arrive beginning June 1.

Most of the “warnings” were “irresponsibly and dangerously” ignored.

My concern is 4-6 weeks from now. The Keys has done well so far. The County Commission passed some tough local laws. However the Commission and Governor are starting to lift them.

Things will get worse. Our good record eliminated. Many more sick. More will die. So far only 3 or 4 deaths in the Keys.

While I am at it, I think Fantasy Fest should be cancelled. It is scheduled at the same time as the anticipated second wave.

Sixty to eighty thousand  persons in Key West the night of the parade. Money winning out over lives. Key West itself will take a beating health wise in the weeks following Fantasy Fest.

Wuhan did not reach its testing goal for its 11 million citizens in 10 days. Turned out to be 6.5 million in 9 days.

Still, a hell of an accomplishment.

Wuhan had initially been hard hit by coronavirus. It beat the virus! Went 30 days with no new cases. Then 2 weeks ago, 6 new cases in one day.

Wuhan did not hesitate. They set up the ambitious program to examine the 11 million in 10 days.

Wuhan says it has enough. The 6.5 million tested revealed 198 asymptomatic cases. People carrying the virus who have not been made ill by it.

Testing in the U.S. has been a failure. Trump is responsible. I will not waste your time setting forth the details. I have in the past. The media has, also. We all know the story.

The U.S. has not at any time met the numbers that Wuhan has demonstrated. Last Friday, Wuhan tested 1.47 million persons. The best one day testing in the U.S. was 416,183.

I find the following amazing. Trump speaks and Biden goes up in the polls.

A short trip back in time. Only to this past February.

Recall Trump saying, “It will all be over in a few days.” A reflection of Trump’s acute powers of prognostication.

It’s hurricane time! A threat every year. This season could be a bad one. The federal hurricane bureau predicts a bad season. The warning does not concern me. They have not always been correct. Hurricanes predicted. None arrived. Hurricanes not predicted. Several arrived.

What bothers me at the moment is the 2 “Arthurs” and Saturday night’s warning that a hurricane was forming and there was a 20 percent chance it would hit the Keys. Guess it did not form. No mention of it this morning.

The 2 “Arthurs” never became a Keys problem.

Nevertheless it is a long way to November 30, the end of the hurricane season.

Hurricanes don’t seem to understand stop and go. Hurricanes have struck after the November 30 date.

I wrote yesterday re the first bad hurricane of modern record keeping times. The hurricane of 1835.

Since hurricane season is around the corner, I did some research. The second “bad” hurricane occurred in October 1846. Over a period of 3 days: 9, 10 and 11.

The October 1846 hurricane was described by those alive at the time as worse than the 1835 one.

Hurricanes back then were described as “cyclones.” Sometimes “hurricanes,” but generally “cyclones.”

The 1846 one was labeled a “severe one.”

Halley’s comet was involved. It passed  over during the hurricane. Many believed the comet aided or created the hurricane. Poppycock or for real? I don’t know.

A resident wrote: It was “the most destructive of any that had ever visited these latitudes within the memory of man.”

Saturday 10/9 brought light squalls of wind and rain which increased during the night.

By Sunday 10/10, the wind was blowing fiercely and the rain was generally constant. Sunday night turned into a “very severe gale.” Note that in addition to cyclone, the term “gale” was also used in describing hurricanes.

Monday 10/11 the storm reached its greatest force. The storm had an “intensity” and blew from the north east. “Trees uprooted, fences blown down, and houses unroofed.”

All families living in Key West north west of Eaton Street abandoned their homes and sought refuge on higher parts of the island in the neighborhood of Southern and Simonton Streets which were thickly wooded.

The light house was washed away. Seven lives lost as the light house was carried away.

I could not find actual number of lives lost.

The residence of William Curry was located at the corner of Caroline and William Street. It was washed from its pillars and floated to sea. The mansion carried with it an “old colored servant” whose body was never recovered.

The storm left. People went to work immediately to overcome their misfortunes. When the sun rose Tuesday morning, people were at work recovering. They asked no outside help.

Colonel Maloney said: “They did not stop to shed tears over their misfortunes. The sun rose…..to behold active limbs and stout hearts cleaning the ground of the debris…..the waning moon of the next night shone up the bright hammer of the mechanic as he drove firmly home the nails in the reconstruction of their homes and business homes.”

Trees blown down were replanted.

Tonight, my blog talk radio show. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. Always interesting. Has to be with Trump around.

Join me for a quick paced half hour. I rant and rave.

Nine my time. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

THE LITTLE BOY PRESIDENT

Memorial Day. A special day. One set aside to honor the men and women who died while serving in the U.S. military.

A brief observation.

The Memorial Day of today is not celebrated in the same fashion as those following World War I and World War II.

I can recall the Memorial Day observances during and following World War II. And those celebrated in the years thereafter.

The Day has changed.

The war dead were memorialized back when. Parades huge. The whole community came out to watch. People listened with revered attention to speeches honoring the war dead.

Then it was off to home. Nothing special the rest of the day. The feeling was having attended a wake a step beyond the actual service.

As the years passed by, the U.S. was engaged in more wars. First Korea, then Vietnam. Most recently Afghanistan. I cannot recall a time the U.S. has not had boots on the ground somewhere in the world.

Something changed, however. The solemnity of the occasion became  a party day, a beach day, a pool day at home, a barbecue, a special shopping day at malls and large discount stores.. Fewer and fewer went downtown to observe the parade. Even fewer remained to listen to the speeches.

Yes, the Day has changed. It is not what was nor what was intended. Good or bad? I don’t know. I am merely setting forth what I have observed. Each of you draw your own conclusions as to why. Even whether the change has any significance.

Respectfully, Trump is a little boy President. Part and parcel of that conclusion is the observation that working class white American men support him. Men’s men. The most relevant component of Trump’s base. Strange since Trump is “the least masculine man to ever hold the modern Presidency.”

Tom Nichols wrote an interesting article in the most recent Atlantic publication: Donald Trump, the Most Unmanly President. An outstanding work as to why white American working men support a person so unlike themselves.

Nichols article is reviewed by setting forth a number of quotes from the article. Each speaking for itself.

Nichols begins with the inquiry as to why the working white men support a little boy President: “So many of Trump’s working-class white male voters refuse to hold Trump to their own standards of masculinity – why they support a man who behaves more like a little boy.”

The observation is made that Trump is not a stand up guy.

“Trump is a vain, cowardly, lying, vulgar, jabbering blowhard.”

“Is Trump a man your father and grandfather would have respected?”

One of George Orwell’s 1984 characters dismissed all the “marching up and down and cheering and waving flags” as “supply sex gone sour.”

“Trump is neither honorable nor courageous.”

He “is a rich downtown bully, the sort working men usually hate.”

“Trump is an obvious coward. He has two particular phobias: Powerful men and intelligent women.”

He “visibly cowers to…..Putin.”

He criticizes China but “likes President Xi, desperately seeking to avoid going on the offense to the Chinese Communist Party boss.”

The old standard of masculinity is “the strong and silent type…..Trump…..is neither strong nor capable of silence.”

Trump says things stereotypically masculine men would not. “Like North Korea’s Kim Jung Un…..We fell in love.”

Trump does not respect women. He doesn’t “like strong women…..Strong women scare Donald. Real men don’t try to bully women.”

Trump fails to accept responsibility. “He is a blamer. Nothing ever his fault.”

Trump fails to look out for his team. “In the midst of disaster, he praises himself while turning on even his most loyal supporters without a moment’s hesitation.” Easily utters, “I take no responsibility at all.”

Trump has trouble with empathy.” He was traumatized “by his childhood and father.” He “should go into psychotherapy.”

Trump lacks masculinity. It “is about maturity. He is not manly because he is not a man. He is a boy…..Not everyone grows up as they age.”

“Trump is a hero to a culture in which so many men are already trapped in perpetual adolescence…..men who feel like life might have passed them by, whose fondest memories are rooted somewhere in their own personal Wonder Years from elementary school until high school graduation, Trump is a walking permission slip to shrug off the responsibilities of manhood.”

Trump indulges “in….. hypocrisy.”

“Cheat on your wife? No problem…..being a father to your kids too onerous a burden…..Let the mothers raise them. Money trouble…..tell your father to write you another check…..Upset your town or workplace has become more diverse? Get it off your chest: Rail about women and Mexicans and African Americans at will and dare anyone to contradict you.”

A macho man. Trump is “the most macho of men…..can turn his enemies to ash through sheer testosterone overload.”

Trump is supported by working class white women also, though the number seems to be diminishing. These women “regard Trump as just one more difficult and mischievous man-child in their lives to be accommodated and forgiven.

These women gave Trump a pass after the Access Hollywood tape came to light. “Women showed up” at rallies with shirts featuring arrows pointing right to where Trump could grab them.

Melania defended the boyishness of it all. “I have two boys at home…..I have my young son and I have my husband. But I know how some men talk, and that’s how I saw it.”

“Trump is unmanly because he has never chosen to become a man…..He is…..working class America’s dysfunctional son, and his supporters, male and female alike, have become the…..parent explaining what a good boy he is to terrorized teachers even while he continues to set fires in the hallways right outside.”

His disgust is prevalent.

Howard Stern said it best: “The oddity in all of this is the people Trump despises the most, love him the most. The people who are voting for Trump for the most part…..He’s disgusted by them.”

Nichols’ follow up to Stern’s words: “The tragedy is that they are not disgusted by him in return.”

So it was said, so it was written.

Enjoy your day!

A SICKO IN THE WHITE HOUSE

Where does it stop? When will Trump cease accusing persons of wrongdoing? Conspiracies are in vogue again.

This time it’s Morning Joe. Joe Scarborough.

The charge that there may have been a conspiracy. A conspiracy to cover a murder when Joe Scarborough was a Congressman.

The year 2001. Lori Klausutis was working in Scarborough’s Washington office. She was found dead in his offices. Investigation determined her death accidental. She fell and hit her head. Scarborough was not in the office at the time.

Nineteen years later Trump decides a conspiracy exists to cover Scarborough’s ass: Scarborough might have killed the girl.

Mika says Trump is a “sicko.” I have to agree.

Trump thinks his record is great. He should run on it! Leave phony conspiracies aside. Let the people tell him how good or bad his record is with their vote. If Trump is as good as he thinks, he should not be afraid to go to the people on what he has accomplished rather than lies and misrepresentations.

Humans are not the only ones hankering for the days they could eat out in a city restaurant. Rats are having a problem. They have become aggressive in their hunt for food amid restaurant closures.

California has a ban on in-person church services. Trump announced Friday that he was lifting such bans across the country. Told the people he was reopening the churches. Considered them essential. And to let him know if they were not reopened. He would take the governors on.

A federal appellate court ruled later Friday in a lawsuit brought by a California church. The Church wanted the ban lifted. The church claimed people had a basic right to attend church.

The appellate court found the ban proper. Based its decision on the lack of any infringement or restriction involving “religious motivation.”

What now brown cow? How will Trump handle the federal court decision? A conspiracy? Judges personally against him? What?

Cocktails at 7 last night. Another enjoyable evening with Cathy in Seattle. The internet is terrific!

I did not drink. Had no alcohol. It was Diet Pepsi for me.

Two Utica friends passed away recently.

One was Michael DeSantis. I believe 93 years old.

Mike was an excellent general practitioner. He was already established when I began practicing.

I always admired Mike because he treated me with respect in my early days as a lawyer. Most people are unaware that many older lawyers dislike and disrespect young attorneys. Mike never did with me.

Mike always called me “Cousin Louis.” We were not related. However, our families had come from the same province in Italy. Mike’s mother and my grandparents were close. We were therefore “cousins!”

Rocco Giruzzi passed on also. Somewhere around 80 years old. We were social friends in our later years. Dinner with the wives, he and I would play golf together, etc.

Rock was a pharmacist. Ended up owning 2 or 3 neighborhood pharmacies. A chain bought him out about 25 years ago for a good buck. Rock retired.

He kept his hand in the pharmaceutical world, however. He had graduated from Albany Pharmacy School. He was on their Board for years. Also on a State board overseeing pharmaceutical practices.

He and some of his classmates got together in their later years. Started some kind of a drug company. Rock was traveling back and forth to Albany once a month for meetings for 3 years.

He and his friends sold the company. Each received $3 million.

A big day in rock’s hose! I was thrilled for him.

Rock was a family man. Extended to aunts, uncles, cousins, etc. That special tight Italian family relationship. He gave each a check from the $3 million. Some $5,000, some $10,000, some more. Such was Rock’s nature.

May Mike and Rock both rest in peace.

I mentioned yesterday Hertz had filed for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy protection. At a time when they were still sitting on $1 billion in cash. An indication how far in debt the company was if $1 billion would not help it.

Reported in the news today that former Hertz CEO Kathryn Marinello received a $9 million compensation package in 2019.

Typical in most of these Chapter 11 filings are the monies a CEO was being paid. Number of employees comes into play and how they may have been treated financially.

In March, Hertz laid off and/or furloughed 16,000 employees. Twenty five percent of its work force.

Hurricane season begins June 1.

The first recorded major hurricane occurred in 1835. Key West’s population 700-800.

The “experts” at the time blamed the hurricane on Halley’s comet. The comet caused the hurricane to have abnormally severe storms, tornadoes and gales.

Halley’s comet revisited Key West in 1909 and 1910 for 2 more hurricanes. Each another story for another time. This tale confined to the 1835 hurricane.

A reading of the damage wrought by the 1835 hurricane reminded me of Irma. Fewer people, boats and homes. Damage never the less severe.

Boats and schooners were thrown out to sea, others inland, everywhere but where they belonged.

Key West isolated at the time. The way it was in 1835. There was no telegraph. Mail took 1 month in either direction.

Folks were on their own. Their prayers and hard work is what helped them to survive. Another problem was money to rebuild, etc. No federal program at the time providing such assistance.

Local merchant Stephen Mallory described the storm as “the severest with which our coast was ever visited.”

Enjoy your Sunday and Memorial Day Weekend!

 

 

 

MORNING STEW #40

A number of disjointed items this morning. Ergo, Morning Stew!

My 72nd day of self-quarantine.

If I had to describe the past several months generally, I would describe them as The Lost Spring In America. Not for me alone. For everyone.

The virus a first for my generation and the 2 following me. The Flu Epidemic of 1918 and 1919 could not have been any fun. The Black Plague horrendous.

The coronavirus crisis has been and continues to be like nothing we living have ever experienced. Never gave any thought we would be going through something like this.

Did we learn anything? Things have been tough. The saying when things get tough, the tough get going comes to mind. Have we been tough? I believe so. Coronavirus has not been easy to deal with.

It has become abundantly clear there are stupid people in this world. Those that fail to accept scientific truth. Those that follow a political leader blindly to their detriment.

Michael Cohen was Trump’s personal attorney and “fixer.” He was released from federal prison this past week after serving 1 year of a 3 year sentence. The prisons are gradually releasing inmates early due to the virus.

Cohen will serve the balance of his term in “home confinement.”

No special treatment here. The feds playing it safe and cost effective. Expensive to provide coronavirus medical care.

Cohen advises he is going to speak out. Write a book. Says the time is not “right yet.” “Soon,” however. Claims he will tell it all.

Week of the Churches!

First Pentecostal Church, Holly Springs, Mississippi, was burned to the ground this past week. The Church refused a stay at home order. Became defiant when the order came down. The members claimed their freedom of speech and ability to worship were being infringed upon.

The Church remained open for services.

Police believe the case to be one of arson.

A spray painted message was left on the grass next to the Church: “Bet you stay home now you hypokrits (arsonist’s spelling).”

Trump came out in support of his Evangelical supporters and churches/synagogues/ mosques yesterday. Defiant he was. Churches, etc. are essential. They are open! If a Governor refuses, he will have to answer to me.

Again Trump stepping where he does not belong. Stay at home and closing religious buildings a State responsibility. Feds have nothing to do with it.

Trump’s position had to have faith leaders singing Hallelujah! Especially his forceful order to the Governors/States to “open right now!”

Religious services in the Keys resume this weekend. Certain rules to be followed.

Masks must be worn. Six foot social distance, except whee families are involved.

Sunday is a Catholic high holy day. The Ascension. St. Mary’s By The Sea has issued its set of rules. In addition to those already listed. Seating will be in every other pew. Service will be limited to 1/2 hour. There will be no choir music.

The climate crisis is turning Antarctica snow green. The perimeter area of Antarctic.

The snow and ice is not melting down to grass. Rather the climate change warmth has caused the snow/ice to form green algae. Resembles a golf fairway. The algae bloom is referred to as “green snow.”

It was announced several weeks ago that 200 plus Mar-a-Lago employees had been furloughed. This past week it was announced that they were no longer furloughed. They were laid off, discharged, gone.

When the furloughed announcement had been made, members were told to bring their own towels to the club. I found such amusing at the time and even now. The initiation fee to become a member is $200,000. Annual dues $14,000.

Bring your own towel?

Michael Moore has been warning the American people to beware. Beware that Trump cancels the November election: “There will be no election if things keep going as they are.”

I have been warning for 2 years that Trump might try to cancel the election. If such occurs, I see the Border Patrol Special Force and ICE in the streets defending Trump’s position against a populist that will be off the wall in justified anger.

The bottom line: The American people may have to fight to preserve their right to vote.

U.S. 1 has been blocked for several months to keep non’residents out of the Keys. There was a crack in the dam, however. Planes were permitted to fly into the Key West Airport.

The numbers of passengers have been released. Not as bad as thought. Passengers not arriving in droves.

Passenger traffic for April was down 97 percent. As it should have been. For May, 63 percent. It is expected that passenger traffic for June will be down 52 percent.

Airport Director Strickland said passenger traffic “fell off a Covid-19 cliff” in April.

The Airport is hurting. Seeking federal aid.

Patrick Allen Tierney died this past week at age 71. A landscaper. One of Key West’s finest.

I bought my Key Haven home in the 1990’s. Immediately gutted the house. Redid the landscaping, even adding to it.

I did not know who to hire for the landscaping. Patrick Hayes, aka Patty Cakes, had become a friend. He was the bartender at Square One for many years. He said, “Get Patrick Tierney.

I did.

I knew nothing about landscaping. Patrick knew everything. I would suggest this and he would say no. Explain why. Did something else.

I was probably a pain. However, he put up with me.

He was the Master!

I told him I did not want the trees and foliage planted in front of the house to grow. He looked at me as if I were stupid. “Everything grows.” Then turned and walked away from me.

His work was outstanding. The final result magnificent. And the trees and foliage in front did grow. So much so I had to hire someone to constantly trim. Patrick was above trimming.

May he rest in peace.

Wuhan a city of 11 million people. They beat the coronavirus problem. Went something like 30 days with no new cases. Then 6 popped up in one day.

Wuhan immediately went to work. Decreed all 11 million people would be tested within 10 days.

A mammoth undertaking!

Wuhan got off to a good start. However, the city has made a change in the testing program. It found that 11 million in 10 days was too much. They have initiated a new program which is moving forward.

Wuhan has 11 districts. Each district will be tested separately. Each will take 10 days to do. Not all districts will be tested at the same time.

Even if the district approach becomes unattainable, Wuhan will have done dramatically better than any city or country in the world. The Chinese know how to move their asses when they have to.

The first system Wuhan discarded looked impressive after 2 days. Not good enough for the Chinese, however.

The first day 887, 321 were tested. The second day, 1,000,724.

Donald, pay attention! They are doing what you haves failed to do. How many Americans have been thus far tested? Three to four percent? Five?

Ben Franklin was many things. Writer, inventor, statesman, ladies man. Many a statement by him has been recorded for posterity. I share 3 with you.

“There never was a good war or bad peace.”

“Nothing…..certain but death and taxes.”

“We do not quit playing because we grow old, we grow old because we quit playing.”

Another major U.S. company has filed for bankruptcy protection. Hertz. Chapter 11. They will continue in business while reorganizing.

Hertz employs 38,000.

The interesting part of Hertz’s bankruptcy filling is that it has $1 billion in cash.

The U.S. is opening. A lot, a little. Many think the coronvirus problem is behind us. It is not. Twenty four States continue to have spreading virus numbers.

There is talk of a second wave. The talk primarily by scientists and doctors. Most politicians keep their heads buried in the sand.

It is anticipated a second wave could be worse than the first which is not yet over. The only way to avoid a disastrous second wave is to take sufficient precautions now. Not later when it is too late.

Party time tonight. Cocktails  at 7 with Cathy in Seattle. Skype is terrific!

Enjoy your day!

 

 

 

WHO IS STRONGER MILITARILY? CHINA OR U.S.?

Japan woke a sleeping giant when it bombed Pearl Harbor. The U.S. woke a sleeping giant when it elected Trump President. China.

China was content to stay in third position in world power behind the U.S. and Russia. Quietly doing its dirty work, quietly improving its military, and as best possible keeping itself out of foreign wars.

Russia has limited power today. From a military perspective, an excellent submarine fleet. And of course atomic weapons left over from World War II which it has improved upon.

Were it not for a leader such as Putin, Russia would be of minimal influence in world affairs. Putin has not relented in his quest to return Russia to the power it enjoyed when it was part of the Soviet Union.

Russia at best is in third place power wise.

The U.S. has been the great power. We thought so. The rest of the world also. Or, so we thought.

The truth is the U.S. has steadily and quietly weakened itself militarily as will be described in this blog. In addition to fighting 20 plus years of wars that should not have been our concern. Wars that weakened us. Wars that wasted our monies.

And then, the American people did what few thought possible. Elected Donald Trump President. The U.S. slide downward began with his swearing in. No President has done worse.

In every respect. Even to the coronavirus epidemic. He has blundered his way through it causing more sickness and death than should have been. Weakening the American fiber in the process.

China yesterday began its major crack down on Hong Kong. America normally would do something. Trump silent so far. His problem is neither he nor his immediate staff know what to do. They are incapable.

Trump never the less stands on the dime. Tensions between the 2 nations will grow even worse. Additional sanctions being discussed already.

This is a new Cold War. Similar to the U.S./Russia one. It will go on for years. Each side hopefully not pushing the button that will commence a nuclear Armageddon.

The Cold War will first be felt on the farm fields of the U.S.

Trump has already done serious damage to American farmers.  Almost from day one with his sanctions involving China. China has retaliated. Each side continues to do so.

Farmers will get destroyed even more. Most of them from States that supported Trump in the 2016 election. I doubt they will in November.

Relations are already strained between the U.S. and China. Going to be for a long time. Twenty years at least from my way of thinking.

As with the U.S./Russia Cold war, both the U.S. and China must be ready militarily to strike or retaliate if necessary.

The U.S. to succeed must without question be the stronger of the two. Otherwise the American people will begin fearing Chinese domination as it did during the previous Cold War involving Russia.

During the past 3 years, I have written several times that from a military perspective, the U.S. was not a match for or superior to the newly developed might of China. We were in a difficult place and no one seemed concerned. Including Trump.

David Ignatius is a Washington Post columnist. An expert in world affairs. He recently wrote an article  for the Washington Post titled: “Think We Have Military Prominence Over China? Think Again.”

I will be paraphrasing the column. He calls it as he sees it. Hits the nail on the head!

Ignatius wrote the U.S. spends nearly $1 trillion a year on defense. China the U.S.’s primary rival. The U.S. has almost a perfect record over the last 10 years in U.S./China war games. The U.S. has lost every time.

The problem seems to be the U.S. has no “kill chain.” The U.S. lacks the capacity to see threats and take quick, decisive action to stop them.

Washington is blind. The U.S. fails to see the future, does not look to the future.

Ignatius places blame on the government, the Pentagon, and Congress. The government, yesterday and today, depends on the Pentagon to guide it. The Pentagon is excellent in seeing what they did yesterday. Understanding how things were done yesterday. No vision into the future.

Congress equally unable to see beyond the past. It wants things done in a similar fashion yesterday, today and tomorrow.

Everyone stuck in a rut. No future thinking.

The U.S. has been so busy buffing its legacy system that it “got ambushed by the future.” It’s a new world! Especially following the end of the pandemic.

China clearly is determined to challenge the U.S. as the global power. Propaganda wars over the origin of the Covid-19 virus just a warm up for the tests ahead.

China’s approach to the military and the U.S. approach are different.

China’s military is not focused on power. Rather on preventing American domination. China cares not the number of carriers and squadrons of jets the U.S. has. China’s approach is not to build carrier per carrier and plane per plane to compete with the U.S.

China’s way is to dwell on precision weapons. Weapons to prevent the U.S. from mobilizing their forces.

For example, the U.S. builds carriers. China does also, but not as many as the U.S. China instead has developed the DF-21. A missile capable of taking out a U.S. carrier. Referred to as the “carrier killer.”

Missiles cheaper to build and operate than carriers in this regard.

Washington lobbyists are a problem. They represent corporations that build yesterday’s weaponry. They are not concerned with military weapons for tomorrow. That would cost their clients more money to produce. An absorbent amount!

Congress goes along. Appropriates monies for current technology. A President signs the appropriation bill believing the more money spent the safer the U.S. will be.

Ignatius advises the U.S. continues to build for an “outmoded strategy” of “projecting power” rather than arming ourselves to deny “China military dominance.”

Ignatius believes the U.S. needs a “radical rethink” as regards its military. The U.S. has the money, technological base, and the human talent to do so.

What is lacking is the will to change.

Ignatius’ message is it would be foolish to enter a new, post pandemic world with the same military hardware.

It’s the 21st century!

Enjoy your day!

COOKING THE BOOKS

Cooking the books? Fudging the numbers?

Certain States, the federal government and CDC…..Any changing number of coronaviyus cases and deaths? Numbers being lowered from what they actually are. To show reopening makes sense.

A State employee charged Florida with so doing yesterday.  She was fired. Governor De Santis fluffed it off by saying it was a “non-issue.”

Apparently a change of mind today. The State employee is being investigated in anticipation of being arrested for cyber stalking and cyber sexual harassment.

Georgia is suspected of having played with the numbers.

I suspect time will prove several entities are involved.

Columbia University has come out with an interesting study. The study suggests coronavirus cases and deaths would be less if social distancing had been put into effect earlier.

The “earlier” time frame small.

If social distancing had been imposed 1 week earlier, the claim is 36,000 lives could have been saved. If 2 weeks earlier, 54,000.

A big difference. Each based on the short time difference. Makes sense however since coronavirus moves rapidly. Recall there were less that 100 deaths for all of the U.S. March 1. Today, 11 weeks later, 95,000 dead.

Unemployment numbers for last week down, but still off the wall.  For the week, 2.4 million new unemployment benefit claims filed.

The nation’s figure historically high.

New York State an example of how bad bad can be. New York has paid 4.5 years of unemployment benefits in the past 2 months.

Trump is one mean man. Classless.

The portrait of every U.S. President since George Washington hangs in the White House. The portrait generally painted after the President leaves office. Ergo, hung after he has left office.

A tradition has developed that the sitting President invites the former President to the White House for the unveiling and hanging of the portrait.

Appears Trump will not adhere to the tradition. Seems he has no intention to hang Obama’s portrait. The White House advises an “indefinite postponement” for the event.

Key West reopens in a limited fashion June 1. Tourists will flock down. Locals will start living again.

I plan on remaining self-quarantined a while longer. I do not believe it will be safe yet to be out and about.

The Covid-19 epidemic has helped a local business. The bicycle shops.

Business is booming for the locals. The bike business has returned. Shop owners advising a struggle to keep up with the increased demand.

This morning’s Key West Citizen’s Citizens’ Voice had some interesting comments. I share them with you.

“When we evacuate Monroe County for a hurricane we do not bring the hurricane to the mainland. When the mainland attempts to enter Monroe County in a pandemic, they bring the virus with them. Minor difference.”

“A 30 year old woman walking down Petronia Street is asked ‘Where’s your mask?’ Response: “Don’t need a mask when you’re outside!’ Genius. Pure. Genius.”

“Jeers to the City of Key West. Work on Duval Street during zero tourists was the perfect opportunity to make it totally pedestrian friendly ‘a la’ Lincoln Road Mall in Miami.” Remove curbs, level entire space, put in plants, etc. Instead “save ol’, save ol’, with blacktop.”

Michigan reeling from all type disasters. The protests, guns in the Legislature, and now 2 river dams breaking. Flooding big time. So far, 10,000 persons evacuated.

Governor Gretchen Whitmer has her hands full. She has proven her mettle thus far. She will handle the dams/flooding problems well. Guaranteed she will not be tossing rolled paper towels to the citizens affected.

On third day in 1972, Michelangelo’s Pieta was on exhibit in the Vatican. “Jesus Christ” damaged it.

A hammer wielding man shouting he was Jesus Christ did the damage.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

TRIPLE CROWN…..OUT OF ORDER

One way or another, major sporting events are returning. Most with no audience.

The Triple Crown. Normal order of the races: Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Belmont. This year the order mixed. Coronavirus the reason.

The new order begins with the Preakness 6/20, followed by the Belmont 9/5, and last interestingly the Kentucky Derby 10/3. The reason given for the change is that the order better fits with the racing season in general.

Mint juleps in October!

My Fair Lady. The exciting Broadway and movie musical. Opened on Broadway in 1957 with Julie Andrews starring as Eliza Doolittle. The movie in 1964 with Audrey Hepburn in the starring role.

Jay Lerner was the song lyricist. At a certain part in the show, Eliza imagines herself having become a friend of the King of England. He tells her: “Next week on the 20th of May / I proclaim Eliza Doolittle Day.”

Today is the 20th of May. Per My Fair Lady, today is Eliza Doolittle Day!

I was not aware an Eliza Doolittle day existed.

My first Broadway show was My Fair Lady. July 1960. Remember it well. I was in New York City for 6 weeks studying for the bar exam. We had classes everyday from 10 in the morning till 10 at night, with one day off. I believe it was July 4th.

For my wife, it was a 2 night trip. We had not seen each other in 3-4 weeks. My Fair Lady was the only part of the 2 days we did not spend in bed.

Ah, youth! The beauty of it all!

There was another reason. It was all we could afford.

Some women have been recognized as special in the relationship with their husbands. How they helped make their husbands successful.

Anne Glenn died yesterday at the age of 100. Wife to astronaut and U.S. Senator John Glenn. An American hero unquestionably.

Mrs. Glenn died of conronavirus. She had been residing in a nursing home.

When her husband was circling the Earth the first time, Mrs. Glenn had already lived many years with a bad case of chronic stuttering. Later in life, she overcame it.

Ohio’s present Governor is Mike De Vine. He was close friends with the Glenns. He said upon hearing of Mrs. Glenn’s death, “There would not have been a John Glenn without Anne Glenn. Theirs an inspiring love story. She represented all that is good about our country.”

President Trump and Florida’s Governor De Santis are close. Very good friends. Trump regards De Santis as the best Governor in the U.S. Easy to understand. De Santis constantly sucks up to him.

Trump lies/misrepresents. De Santis is similarly inclined, though not as bad.

Last week, he tried to fluff off something. Something bad in the ultimate sense. Terrible. Way out of line.

Rebekah Jones was a State employee till very recently. She was responsible for the coronavirus data board in the Department of Health.

She was told to change some numbers re the virus. Number of cases, number of deaths. Reduce them. She refused to manipulate the data.

Rebekah said that for refusing to “manually change data to drum up support for the plans to reopen,” she was charged with “insubordination” and lost her job.

Governor De Santis says the situation a “non-issue.”

Immigrants confined in detention centers and watched over by ICE are suffering from Covid-19. Close quarters, insufficient protections, etc. are causing many to become afflicted.

A lawsuit by or on behalf of the immigrant detainees was brought in federal court. Three detention centers involved. One in Miami, one in Broward County, and one in Glades County.

A federal judge ruled in favor of the detainees. The Judge ordered ICE to bring the number of detainees down from 1,400 to 350 in 2 weeks. The order further provided that each detainee was to be provided masks within 2 days.

The Judge found violations of the Fifth and Eighth Amendments. Violations of due process and unusual punishment.

The U.S. Justice Department sent a letter to California advising the State should open churches. Justice was of the opinion that closing of the churches might violate religious freedoms.

At least one good has come out of the coronavirus crisis. Many factories and other facilities are closed. As a result, carbon dioxide emissions for April dropped 17 percent from last year’s daily average. The last time emissions were down to 17 percent for a whole month was 2006.

First arrest for speeding whiled operating a vehicle. This day 1899 in Manhattan. Jacob Gorman got the first vehicular speeding ticket. He was doing 12 mph while operating an electric car. The speed limit was 8 mph.

Enjoy your day!

I FELL AGAIN

I am falling again. This is the second time in 2 weeks.

I suspect it is the self-quarantine. I have not left the house. Not using the cane while home. Always something to grab on if I think I am going to fall.

Not working out that way as the 2 recent falls evidence.

I am back to wobbling. Walk ok. Then suddenly drifting from one side to the other.

Last night’s fall was not one of my best. I still feel it. On top of the fall 2 weeks ago from which I had not yet totally recovered.

Hurt like hell. Fortunately, no fractures.

How long will I continue to be so lucky?

Anyhow, I am even going to go to bed with the cane from this point forward. It will be with me all the time.

There will be no Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou tonight. I feel tired and beat up. Don’t want to handle preparing for the show and then doing it. So it is an afternoon and night off for me and those who listen to the blog talk radio show.

Trump must be looking for a way to die. Taking a hydroxychloroquine pill every day for 1 1/2 weeks. Trump is obese. No question about it. Of necessity, he must have heart problems. Too old and too fat not to have any.

The FDA says don’t take the pill. The VA says its experience with it is the drug kills people with heart problems. Even FOX’s Neil Cavuto last night was adamant in stressing how wrong it was for Trump to take the pill. Several times he repeated it kills!

A few weeks ago, the news came out that Trump was pushing the production of the drug and its mass sale in New York and New Jersey. Two States buried with coronavirus cases. Trump was pushing hard. I cannot help but wonder what interest he, his family or some friends might have in the sale of the drug.

I put nothing past the man.

I go even a step further. I question whether Trump is even taking the drug. He has to have sufficient smartness not to be that stupid. I suspect he is lying.

The drug is not Socrates’ hemlock. Socrates was forced to drink the hemlock. He was ordered to death. By his own hand via the drink or some other more painful method.

His pill consumption is closer to Jim Jones’ Kool Aide. A more voluntary consumption.

Keep in mind the number of coronavirus deaths in the U.S.

On March 1, less than 100. Today, in excess of 90,000. Ninety thousand in less than 3 months.

Average deaths in U.S. at this time roughly 1,000 a day.

All the result of Trump’s screw ups.

Compiled data clearly indicates that more older men with heart failure than women similarly conditioned  are dying from the virus. Based on the results of a new Netherlands study.

It was initially thought more older heart problemed men were dying because of their wayward lives. More drinking and smoking than women.

Italian data reveals more older heart problemed men than women died. Seventy percent more.

The new study suggests the cause if a key enzyme that men have more of than women. The enzyme is angiotensin-converting-enzyme. Referred to as ACE2.

ACE2 makes it easier for the coronavirus to enter the body. The virus latches on to the inhibitors.

Hurricane noises are being heard already. Tropical storm Arthur is skipping up the eastern seaboard far enough out to do no damage.

More hurricanes expected, however.

Recent studies indicate global warming a contributing factor to the increase of wind speeds. Hurricanes were studied for 40 years in arriving at the conclusion.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration conducted the study.

A step back in history.

It was on this day in 1538 that Henry VIII’s second wife was executed. Anne Boleyn.

Anne did everything to entice Henry to get rid of wife number 1 and marry her. She was a sexy pixie and shared her charms freely and enticingly to the King.

Anne failed Henry in one extremely important regard. She bore him a daughter rather than a son.

She was charged with adultery, incest, and conspiracy against the King. The veracity of the charges questionable.

Henry claimed Anne had seduced him by witchcraft.

She was sentenced to death by burning or execution. Henry decided execution by beheading. He did show her mercy however. Rather than have her head severed by an ax, he permitted a sword to be used. Apparently more humane.

In a sense, Anne won. Title to the crown important. It was her daughter Elizabeth who ultimately became Queen Elizabeth I and ruled gloriously for 40 years.

May Johnson and I have something in common. She wrote in her diary she fell on yesterday’s date in 1896. I fell 124 years later on the same day in 2020.

Enjoy your day!