Wednesday 1 April 2020
JOHN BATCHELOR SHOW
Co-hosts: Gordon Chang, Daily Beast, and David Livingston, The Space Show
Wednesday 1 April 2020 / Hour 1, Block A: Richard Epstein, Chicago Law, NYU Law, and Hoover; in re: Friedrich Hayek leads the way to the recovery. Part 1 of 2.
Wednesday 1 April 2020 / Hour 1, Block B: Richard Epstein, Chicago Law, NYU Law, and Hoover; in re: Friedrich Hayek leads the way to the recovery. Part 2 of 2. Give the funds to ten different banks and . . . Those of us who are suspicious of the capacity of the federal government to do some things . . .
One of the great crimes of people like Bernie, e.g., is to [condemn ] US businesses across the board. When insulin was invented by two guys n Canada in 1923 who had no idea what they were dong but accidentally got there. They had one difficulty with the feds: they wanted to use ethanol, which was illegal. Eli Lilly offered to give the treatment for free to fight diabetes. Corporate heads spend their lives trying to figure out how to integrate the pro bono with the financial. . . . The Hayekian problem of knowledge. If one tenth of one percent of the population dies because of the current silliness, you just cost the country [$330 billion?]
Wednesday 1 April 2020 / Hour 1, Block C: John Cochrane, Hoover & The Grumpy Economist blog, in re: Defense Production Act was invoked perhaps for political reasons this time; giving them the profit motive would have wrung just as much out of them. The administrative state is extremely cautious. The FDA’s job is to block drugs to keep them safe. Speed is not its mandate. . . . The dream that technology will save us [by testing everyone every day].
Wednesday 1 April 2020 / Hour 1, Block D: Larry Diamond, Hoover, in re: The matter of maintaining democracy during this existential crisis. The CARES Act: Donald Katz, Johns Hopkins; Zeke Emmanuel, at U Penn; both say, Once we’ve broken the extreme virality of this malady—flattened the curve—and given medical community the chance to ramp up, we can gradually return to normal. First group would be the youngest and healthiest; those who need to be most cautious, . . . The reason East Asia contained this virus more quickly is that they had the experience of SARS. Most people had masks. . . . Voting cannot be done online because we have no means of verifying the voter. However, we can vote by mail ballot. Every state must give voters the options of a no-excuse ballot. States need much better electronic counting mechanisms.
Wednesday 1 April 2020 / Hour 2, Block A: John A Catsimatidis, Red Apple Group and host of Cats Roundtable, in re: The state of the Union, of the state, of the city. Commissioner O’Neill has volunteered to return in order to oversee the distribution of medical supplies. The mayor is looking to be optimistic; how is the city? We need capable people and Commissioner O’Neill certainly is one. April 5 is thought to be a surge day. Most of the positives in New York are in Brooklyn and Queens. The theaters, gyms (except for DeBlasio’s) are all closed. Does it ever come back to normal? If we don; reopen business in the next thirty or sixty days, we’ll be in trouble. And people don't seem to be eager to sit in Lincoln Center, for example, next to strangers.
The MTA has cut back drastically on the number of trains, obliging everyone to be much more crowded. She promised to tell the governor. To boot, they're emptying Riker’s Island of possibly-positive prisoners and putting them n a hotel. Wrong! It's a huge island —build a good medical facility. As for the vagrants around Midtown, the placement are so disgusted, they [in effect give up on arresting many malfeasants]. The president is much concerned with New York , his hometown. Thirty to forty thousand people a year die from the regular flu; if it’s twice as much . . . What will happen in future years about the normal flu? So far, food security in the five boroughs is very good.
Wednesday 1 April
Wednesday 1 April 2020 / Hour 2, Block B: Bill Whalen, Hoover Area 45 podcast, in re: Joe Biden in his basement making observations. What exactly does he say when he emerges from the basement? Last week he gave a teleprompter address, was complimentary to several Democrats. Then he chid the president, then went on CNN. The question arises, what does he have to contribute? . . . He could be a very positive force; there’s no real precedent in presidential politics for his variety of presentation.
Wednesday 1 April 2020 / Hour 2, Block C: Dr Henry Miller, Pacific Research Institute, in re: Serology, which looks for antibodies, and tests. Two US firms have launched an effort to present a serology test that’ll show results very fast. Began shipping some tests on last Monday.
Need to gauge
- Specificity: how accurate? Of 100 persons who've recovered, how many will be correctly diagnosed as having antibodies? We hope for 95%.
- Sensitivity: can it distinguish between COVID-19 antibodies and those of another virus?
A test that doesn't work well is worse than no test at all.
Chronic renal disease, cardiovascular disease, immune-compromised patients, esp those from steroids or chemotherapy, who have a much higher mortality rate than similar persons without these comorbidities. Health physicians and nurses are dying from the virus; why? Could be, for example, an undiagnosed enlarged heart. Germany is testing 500,000 people a week. . . . There’s a suspicion that half or more of the population has been infected and are asymptomatic.
Wednesday 1 April 2020 / Hour 2, Block D: Tunku Varadarajan, Hoover Institution executive editor, & WSJ; in re: Brooklyn, and Adams Morgan in DC. Brooklyn is eerie—streets normally are filled with life, but now it’s silent, except when parents take children out occasionally. People are in the parks when the weather is clement. Adams Morgan: Afghan family arrived as refugees, sent children through grad school and established three restaurants, including Lapis; now have been obliged to lay off 75 employees.
Wednesday 1 April 2020 / Hour 3, Block A: Salena Zito, Washington Examiner: The Middle of Somewhere column, in re: Using Gettysburg to reflect on a national crisis. The turning-point of the Civil War: are people visiting? If so, why? They’re looking for a place where sacrifices were made, and to be reflective about our current experiences. Everyone there was behaving appropriately.
Wednesday 1 April 2020 / Hour 3, Block B: Salena Zito, Washington Examiner: The Middle of Somewhere column, in re: Waffle House closed in Chambersburg, PA. Chain closed it because it can't keep everything open. There’s an unofficial index wherein the economic viability of a community is gauged by whether or not a Waffle House is open. Green: all are open, everything is fine. Yellow: some are closed: warning signs on the horizon. Red: closed. Economic disaster.
[Senior medical staff are being laid off Western PA hospitals because the hospitals are empty because, with no virus patients, everybody is afraid to go to a hospital for [Senior medical staff are being laid off Western PA hospitals because the hospitals are empty because, with no virus patients, everybody is afraid to go to a hospital for any other reason.]
Wednesday 1 April 2020 / Hour 3, Block C: Chris Carberry, CEO of Explore Mars (a nonprofit to advance the goal of sending humans to Mars within two decades), in re: The Explore Mars festival delayed till August.
Wednesday 1 April 2020 / Hour 3, Block D: Jonathan Bass, CEO of PTM Images, in re: Supply chain disruptions and effect of the stimulus bill on small business.
Wednesday 1 April 2020 / Hour 4, Block A: Charles Burton, senior Fellow at the Centre for Advancing Canada's Interests Abroad at the Macdonald-Laurier Institute, in re: https://twitter.com/ezralevant/status/1244806063746056192
Wednesday 1 April 2020 / Hour 4, Block B: Stephen Yates, former deputy national security advisor to Vice President Cheney and currently CEO of DC International Advisory,in re: Taiwan and the coronavirus epidemic, including https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-52088167
Wednesday 1 April 2020 / Hour 4, Block C: Bruce Bechtol, San Angelo State, in re: North Korea and the virus.
Wednesday 1 April 2020 / Hour 4, Block D: John Tamny, RealClearMarkets, in re: The CARES Act. “Conservatives and Libertarians Gulled Yet Again by 'Pork' and 'Deficits' Carmen Reinhart and Kenneth Rogoff released This Time Is Different in 2009. It’s since given conservatives, liberals, and libertarians ammunition of sorts when it comes to making their simplistic cases against budget deficits and debt.
“To be clear, none of what's been written so far is meant to defend government spending. The politicized allocation of precious resources always and everywhere created in the private sector suffocates economic growth. Government spending is a growth retardant. Period. . . .”