Johanna Faust, a mixed race Jew, prefers to publish pseudonymously. She is committed: first, to preventing war, ecological disaster, and nuclear apocalypse; last to not only fighting for personal privacy & the freedom of information, but, by representing herself as a soldier in that fight, to exhorting others to do the same. She is a poet, always. All these efforts find representation here: "ah, Mephistophelis" is so named after the last line of Christopher Marlowe's Dr. Faustus, whose heretical success flouted the censor for a time.

US Coronavirus: Listen To This. Now.

(Original title: "Contaigous Crossroads: Close Cutting Coronavirus Critique Catalogs Careless Calumny's Cruel Consequences, Champions Creativity, Caution, Common-Sense Compliance"*)

Three months ago, no one knew that SARS-CoV-2 existed. Now the virus has spread to almost every country, infecting at least 446,000 people whom we know about, and many more whom we do not. It has crashed economies and broken health-care systems, filled hospitals and emptied public spaces. It has separated people from their workplaces and their friends. It has disrupted modern society on a scale that most living people have never witnessed. Soon, most everyone in the United States will know someone who has been infected. Like World War II or the 9/11 attacks, this pandemic has already imprinted itself upon the nation’s psyche.
The first paragraph.

Full text is in the audio below.   LISTEN TO IT. 

It is important.  (Crucial, I would say, given the title….)*

I have included the first paragraph in its entirety, above, after which I am posting a short overview summary of the transcript, below, written by my laptop (yes, you read that right, 'by').  For your convenience.  In case it helps you in your task to convince other people to listen. (Didn't I hear you say you wanted to do that?)  Just make sure all of you maintain six feet social distance....

Funny how that is the same recommended distance of feet of earth above you when you are buried...

Whatever you do, please:


How the Pandemic Will End:
The U.S. may end up with the worst 
COVID-19 outbreak in the industrialized world. 
This is how it’s going to play out.

Joan Wong — Story by Ed Yong — March 25, 2020

A global pandemic of this scale was inevitable... 

...Rich, strong, developed, America is supposed to be the readiest of nations. That illusion has been shattered. Despite months of advance warning as the virus spread in other countries, when America was finally tested by COVID-19, it failed.

...Instead, a health-care system that already runs close to full capacity, and that was already challenged by a severe flu season, was suddenly faced with a virus that had been left to spread, untracked, through communities around the country.

...Those tests have been slow to arrive because of five separate shortages: of masks to protect people administering the tests; of nasopharyngeal swabs for coll
ecting viral samples; of extraction kits for pulling the virus’s genetic material out of the samples; of chemical reagents that are part of those kits; and of trained people who can give the tests. 

...Instead, Trump has repeatedly played down the problem, telling America that “we have it very well under control” when we do not, and that cases were “going to be down to close to zero” when they were rising. 

...If Trump stays the course, if Americans adhere to social distancing, if testing can be rolled out, and if enough masks can be produced, there is a chance that the country can still avert the worst predictions about COVID-19, and at least temporarily bring the pandemic under control. 

...But it would also come at a terrible cost: SARS-CoV-2 is more transmissible and fatal than the flu, and it would likely leave behind many millions of corpses and a trail of devastated health systems....

...It’s likely, then, that the new coronavirus will be a lingering part of American life for at least a year, if not much longer. 

...Inequalities will widen: People with low incomes will be hardest-hit... Diseases have destabilized cities and societies many times over, “but it hasn’t happened in this country in a very long time, or to quite the extent that we’re seeing now,” says Elena Conis, a historian of medicine at UC Berkeley. 

...Health-care workers will take time to heal: One to two years after SARS hit Toronto, people who dealt with the outbreak were still less productive and more likely to be experiencing burnout and post-traumatic stress. 

...But “there is also the potential for a much better world after we get through this trauma,” says Richard Danzig of the Center for a New American Security. ...

Listen to the full report, above
or read more -- this was merely a tease -- and, unlike here, includes hyperlinks --
This story is parrt of The Atlantic's Covid-19 Pandemic Coverage.

In any event, I set the summarize software on the least detailed setting on purpose. 

This is to make you listen to the audio or, if you really prefer reading a transcript (& let me say again, the audio is really, really excellent) or, for some reason you dislike British Accents, well then you will have to hop on over to The Atlantic and read it there.                                                        
They have announced that their entire archive of Coronavirus coverage has been made publicly available, for free,  and will remain so for the length of this crisis.

That might be quite a bit longer than most people think.

So, for a full text of this excellent, please-make-all-your-friends-read-it presentation, or if you wish to see the graphic on your right in all its  spectacular detail, just follow the read more links (at the end of the summary, above) to the article at the The Atlantic.  

Please share widely.  

Be seeing you.

*The title was even longer than that.  A monstrosity which I wrote as a meditative exercise so as not to do any Unnecessary Freaking Out.  Freaking Out, when not unequivocally determined to be the Best Course of Action, is always a bad idea.)

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