Wondering why South Korea can test so many of its citizens (and thus flatten the coronavirus curve) while America can't? Could be at least in part because our Administration had to have our President's son-in-law benefit financially from it! He had a vested interest in the corporation our HHS contracted to create a website that would supposedly have helped you evaluate your symptoms and find a testing center near you -- and then the website never went live, possibly because they all knew they'd stepped in it. Thus our Administration wasted time and lives trying to figure out how to profit from this pandemic. Nice work if you can get it! (Also, too, our President's votaries should remember that he promised a "national network of drive-through test sites" which has not as of yet materialized. I kid, of course: our President's votaries never remember anything that might reflect badly on their Personal Lord and Savior.)
Suraj K. Sazawal at Defending Rights and Dissent reminds us that we should not allow our government to use physical distancing rules to roll back Constitutional protections. As they're very anxious to do, amirite? And as they like to do to cover up their own incompetence, as Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has been very slow to impose physical distancing rules in his state, but very quick to blame New Yorkers for coming to Florida with the virus, and almost as quick to sic our National Guard to question New Yorkers when they come down (and even track their movements with an app, though of course I don't suppose he'll necessarily develop a good app). And that's before we get to our Justice Department's recent attempts at power grabs -- or the USA PATRIOT Act.
Hamilton Nolan at In These Times tells us "What a General Strike Would Take." We've never had a general strike larger than an American city, but quantum physicists might tell us that whatever we imagine comes to pass sooner or later -- though nobody wants an "indiscriminate" general strike in which "truly essential" workers would participate. In any case, we'd best not think of so many good Americans now out of work as an opportunity, not just because recasting someone else's misery as your opportunity is what evil people do, but because the West Virginia teacher union's strikes of 2018 and 2019 were not a response to an obvious "opportunity." We shouldn't be waiting for the right landscape so much as creating it.
In a related note, that peach of a Philippine President says police and military will shoot anyone who violates lock-down laws. The Philippine National Police Chief said later that of course they all know he didn't mean what he actually said, but the Philippine President is the same fellow who openly encouraged folks to shoot drug dealers dead -- after all, who better to protect the due process rights of others than a rage addict with a gun? I just know our own President wishes he could have uttered the line "(d)o not intimidate the government. Do not challenge the government. You will lose." Hopefully you noticed as quickly as I did that if he'd said "do not challenge your government," it wouldn't have come off as well.
Ho hum, even Florida's current Administration contends that the state's unemployment website is a "shit sandwich," and its design under previous Governor and now Senator Rick Scott "was about making it harder for people to get benefits or keep benefits so that the unemployment numbers were low to give the governor something to brag about." But note well Mr. Scott has now won three consecutive elections -- with 49, 48, and 50 percent of the vote, to be sure -- because Democrats didn't field candidates who could convince large numbers of Floridians that they would actually do things for their bosses, the people.
Finally, our President insists that we should all show up to the polls in November -- and claims, of course without evidence, that voting-by-mail would cause all kinds of voter fraud -- but he himself has requested a vote-by-mail ballot for the upcoming Florida primary! And that's just another reminder that our President believes rules are for little people, not big people like him.