COVID-19 Response

I keep telling people that this situation is going to get worse before it gets better, and they don’t believe me.

There’s no vaccine for this.  That means there are only two ways to avoid being killed by it:  1. Don’t be exposed to it, or 2. Get infected and survive it.   The first one is a sure thing if you can completely cut yourself off from society.  This thing is contagious BEFORE you have symptoms.  That means that any of the people you interacted with in the past week and a half could have infected you and you don’t even know it yet. 

So we’re pretty much left with number 1: don’t be exposed.  That is why the government, schools, churches and businesses are all saying, “stay home” to one degree or another.  If you can avoid coming into contact with infected people, you won’t get sick. 

The first person to be reported to have this disease was December 1st in China. Now there are over 100 countries with infected people, almost 200,000 people confirmed infected, and over 7,000 deaths.  The average mortality rate worldwide is 3.92%.  To put that into real numbers, if every person on earth (7.8 Billion people) gets infected, the death toll will be around 300 MILLION people.  Imagine if tomorrow every American outside the state of Florida died.  That’s how deadly this is. 

Back to the beginning: this is going to get worse before it gets better.  I don’t have a crystal ball, I haven’t received any new information from God regarding the future, but I can use my medical knowledge, and my understanding of how the world works to let you know that people are going to start panicking worse than they are now.  More people are going to get infected.  The hospitals in the United States are going to start feeling the pinch.  Nurses and doctors are going to get sick, and there will be nobody to replace them on their shifts.  That means the hospitals’ capacity to care for the ill will go down.   I truly believe we are going to get to the point where, like Italy, the government tells us all to simply stay home unless absolutely necessary. 

At some point it’s going to start getting better.  The number of people infected and recovered is going to be higher than the number of sick people and people who haven’t gotten it.   Ninety-six percent of people who get this virus will survive.  We all just need to keep our heads, be safe, take precautions, mourn the dead, and move on.  I pray that this virus is more like measles which, once you get it or get vaccinated, you are protected, and not like influenza which mutates.  It would be horrible if this virus killed off 4% of the population every year. 

So for now, understand that the precautions that those in charge are advising are for everybody’s good: we are trying to prevent the rapid spread of this so that our healthcare system doesn’t have to make decisions like they are making in Italy, where some are reporting that people over 60 should not even come to the hospital because they are prioritizing care for those who have the best chance at survival.

God is still in charge.  If you don’t know Christ as Savior, what better time than now to trust in Him, when you have a 1 in 25 chance of dying in the next few months?  You should figure this out anyway, because you have a 1 in 1 chance of dying (a sure thing) in the next 100 years.  And if you think running out of toilet paper will be bad, imagine living for eternity in hell because you ignored God and your own sin. 

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Deer Hunting

I used to go to Missouri to hunt on my dad’s farm/woods every year. Well, almost every year. There was a run of years when I didn’t miss a single year, but then I stayed home when my wife had radiation therapy, or other situations like that. But I haven’t been there to hunt since 2016.

2018 I had a bum knee. 2017 I’m pretty sure it was job related (I had just started a new job 2 months before, and didn’t want to take a week off).

So I missed two years. No big deal. But now I’m going to miss this year too. I put in for the time off last month so I could drive down there Wednesday (tomorrow), and hunt until Saturday evening when I would drive home. Three days of hunting. But then last week I got some cold virus, and although I’m about 75% over it, and getting better every day, I don’t think the wisest thing to do at this point is to go sit in the cold for 11 hours a day. Plus I don’t really feel physically up to the task of dragging a deer out of the woods right now. So I will have to forego Missouri hunting yet another year.

Looks like I will have to pull my muzzleloader out and try to remember how that thing works, so I can hunt in Iowa in a few weeks. Oh well…at least it will be cheaper.

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Burn Your Cash Here

At work tonight I saw a mail-order catalog that caught my attention. Across the top it says, “Sunnyland Farms”. They sell food. On the front cover is a dish with two loaves of what look to be pumpkin bread. I picked it up because I thought, “Who buys pumpkin bread??  It’s dead easy to make! Also who garnishes it with leaves flour and several raw pecans?”

Y’all, this catalog is for rich people. It must be. I looked through it, and you know how they inflate prices for fundraisers for the Boy Scouts or school, like a small tin of popcorn for $10 when you know you could get one twice as big for $5 at Wal Mart? If there were popcorn in this catalog, that same tin would cost $80.

I’m not kidding. I was curious how much they are asking for the pumpkin bread. It’s on page 25. Can you guess? No? Go ahead and guess.

You’re wrong. It’s $40.60 for two 12 oz loaves. I have no idea why it’s $40.60 and not $40 or $41. What’s with the extra sixty cents? You know how much the ingredients would cost to make these two loaves? I could go to the store and buy everything I would need to make them including bowls, mixing spoons, the bread pans, etc, and it wouldn’t cost $40.60. Assuming you already have all the regular baking equipment, I’m guessing the ingredients would cost about $6 including the pumpkin. And they’re selling it for $40.60. Or you can buy eight loaves at a time for $35.73 a piece.

But that’s not all. I looked through the rest of the catalog. That was a mistake. I started to get upset that there are actually people out there buying these drastically over priced baked goods. They’re selling a pecan pie for $50.35. There isn’t a pie in the world that’s worth more than $15. What do they do: polish the pecans individually?

I saw one cake that sounded really good. It’s called a “Rum Crunch Cake” and it says, “This light, fine-textured pound cake is crusted with sweet coconut flakes and midget pecan pieces. Drizzled with a rum butter sauce, it is moist and delicious. Keep on hand for unexpected guests.” If I have guests unexpectedly showing up at my house, they’re going to get whatever food I have already. I’m not giving them a piece of my Rum Crunch Cake for which I have (presumably) paid $44.30. I think I’ll pay the extra $10 to have the cake covered with clear acrylic so I can display it.

I think the most shocking price-gouge in the catalog is how much they are charging for nuts. Would you like a 2 pound 4 ounce box of whole almonds? You could purchase it for $14.02 from Wal Mart and take it home with you the same day. Orrrrr, you could pay Sunnyland $42.75 and wait a few weeks to get them.

Today I learned again that I’m not rich. Because I don’t see myself ever paying this much for this stuff.

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How Dare Carson King be Human!

On Saturday September 14th the nation tuned in to ESPN to watch the show ESPN College Gameday, a traveling show where four men talk about the college football games of that weekend, especially focusing on the game where they are located that week.  That day it was in Ames, Iowa in preparation for this year’s in-state rivalry football game between the Iowa State University Cyclones and the University of Iowa Hawkeyes. It was a hard fought game on both sides, but a muffed punt late in the game by the Cyclones sealed the Hawkeye’s victory this year.

But that wasn’t the biggest story that came out of this game.  A 24 year old man named Carson King was in the crowd at the ESPN College Gameday broadcast and, like many others, he was holding a sign.  Many people’s signs had various messages expressing support for their team, disdain for the other team, or attempts at humor.  Carson’s sign basically stated that he was out of beer money to buy Busch Light, and would like people to donate. 

Donate they did.  Within hours it was several thousand dollars, prompting this young man to decide that he would not keep the money, but after buying one case of beer he would donate everything else to the University of Iowa Stead Children’s Hospital , which famously receives a wave from everybody at the Iowa home football games next door right after the first quarter of the game ends.  The campaign went viral. Both Anheuser Busch and Venmo (the company that was handling Carson’s account) declared that they would match any funds reached, thereby tripling whatever people send in. A few days ago the donation total broke the one million dollar level, meaning that the Children’s Hospital is going to get a very sizable donation.  All because of the kindness and unselfishness of Carson King.  Anheuser Busch jumped on the PR train, announcing they would be delivering “a year’s supply” of Busch Light to Carson, and that the cans would have his picture on the side. Carson was also given tickets to the next Hawkeye home game (this Saturday) so that he could participate in the wave to the children for which he had raised so much money.

This was a happy story all around, a feel-good story about the generosity of people and bonds that transcend any college football allegiance. And then the Des Moines Register stepped in.  The ultra-left-leaning newspaper evidently could not leave this man alone, but decided, in the spirit of #metoo and “cancel culture”, that Carson King must be destroyed.  And so they began scouring his social media accounts looking for any dirt they could find and report on.  And they found something, reporting that eight years ago when Carson was a sophomore in high school, he had two tweets that contained racist jokes in them.  They asked him about them, and of course, Carson did not even remember them.  He deleted them, expressed remorse for ever saying them, and even provided evidence from 2016 (four years later) that he did not really feel that way, with a tweet that read “Until we as a people learn that racism and hate are learned behaviors, we won’t get rid of it. Tolerance towards others is the first step.”   That tweet was written when he was 21 years old, and much more mature. 

But as a result of these tweets being revealed, Anheuser Busch, the company that produces millions of barrels of beer each year, causing untold suffering in the United States, has decided that they cannot be connected with a man who told two bad jokes almost a decade ago. They have cut ties with Carson, stating that his posts do not align with their values.  The irony is almost palpable. 

There are two lessons that we can learn from this whole thing.  First of all, Jesus said in Matthew 12:36 “But I tell you that every careless word that people speak, they shall give an accounting for it in the day of judgment.” unfortunately for some of us, judgment day doesn’t come soon enough to please the Des Moines Register.  They want Carson to be judged today.

And secondly, the left doesn’t care who they have to destroy in their quest for ideological purity.  This man, whose greatest crime in his life is telling a couple of off-color jokes, is now being criticized and rejected.  Nobody is safe.  I have always tried personally to ensure that everything I say and do online is acceptable to God and is true to my values and morals that I have learned from the Bible.  But I am almost positive that you could go through anybody’s social media and find something that would embarrass them like Carson found out today.  And the sad thing is that Carson could have avoided all this if he had identified as a Democrat, or even a political progressive.  If you disagree that those people get preferential treatment by the cancel culture/metoo crowd then please explain how Justin Trudeau is still in office. Please explain how Governor Northam of Virginia is still in office. Even Bill Clinton, when he was credibly accused of rape, was excused by the left, when people like Brett Kavanaugh who was accused of sexual impropriety (not even rape) was raked over the coals, received death threats, and is even now being threatened with impeachment because some other woman decided that she thinks she remembers something from 20 years ago (don’t hold me to those details, I haven’t researched them). 

So people, watch what you say, because somewhere out there is a liberal who will bring up your every mistake to the world, invalidating anything good in your life.  I feel sadness for Carson King.  But I feel indignation for the Des Moines Register and their editorial staff. They are the ones who should be ashamed of themselves.

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