The news is not all bad (just mostly so)
- Amazon is hiring 100,000 more workers, bumping pay.
- Wisconsin makes toilet paper. Kimberly Clark, Clorox, Campbell soup, cereal companies, and supermarket chains were beating the S&P 500 by 27 points, on average.
- Random acts of kindness. Mike Thomsen says 20 neighbors here in Orchard Ridge have signed up to help older shut-ins at https://orna.wildapricot.org.
- The numbers at Blaska Policy Werkes are up. People have nothing better to do than read this blogge, apparently. Sad. But thanks for the business.
Some are predicting a rise in corona-babies nine months from now. Our cloudy crystal ball also predicts more divorce and, sadly, domestic violence. And crime.
Policing in the pandemic
Even in normal times, Madison WI police carry an arsenal of weaponry: A firearm, handcuffs, Narcan, communications equipment. Many wear bullet-resistant vests. Now they’re dressed like hospital workers. In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, acting police chief Vic Wahl says street cops are being supplied with masks, gowns, gloves, and eye guards. Plus Purell and Clorox wipes. Chief Wahl says:
“We are also minimizing the risk of spread within our facilities. Meetings at MPD community rooms have been cancelled, routine fingerprint service is suspended, and civilian ride-alongs are on hold. We’re handling incidents/contacts by phone where possible and curtailing some non-essential pro-active work. Like other City agencies, we are exploring options for having some of our support personnel work from home.”
Unfortunately, social distancing is difficult for the average beat cop. It is, so often, a hands-on job. Often enough, our police get spit on — COVID-19 or no.
School’s out for the bangers
Because Madison schools are on hiatus, the Werkes also predicts more car thefts. Two on Monday (03-16-2020), the first day of no school. And this from the Madison police blotter:
At 9:30 p.m. Monday, a 17-year-old male was walking in the 200 block of North Blount Street when a group of about 10 to 15 teenagers got out of two vehicles. One of the boys pointed a gun at the 17-year old and demanded everything in his pockets, including his smartphone. The victim told police he knew of some of the suspects. They were described as younger African American males between the ages of 14 to 17 years.
After taking the phone, all of the suspects got back in the two vehicles and left the area. They’re still at large.
The world will change
This worldwide epidemic (therefore, a pandemic) likely will mark a pivot point, as did World War 2, as did 9/11. Two distance-learning entrepreneurs write:
Chaotic times have a way of reordering reality and, in the process, opening doors to new opportunities and mind-sets. In the past month Americans broke a habit of almost a century’s standing. The office lost top billing as the place where white-collar work gets done. … The age of the office as we know it is probably over, and the bell can’t be unrung.
Blaska’s Bottom Line: Depending on how long this lasts, will shaking hands (always unsanitary) disappear in favor of elbow bumps? And say goodbye to the French la bise.