Nation and world news briefs
Rand Paul says he has recovered from COVID-19 and is volunteering at a hospitalWearing a smile, a beard and a doctor’s smock, Kentucky U.S. Sen. Rand Paul posted on his Twitter page Tuesday that he no longer has the coronavirus and is volunteering at a Bowling Green hospital.“I appreciate all the best wishes I have received. I have been retested and I am negative,” Paul said. “I have started volunteering at a local hospital to assist those in my community who are in need of medical help, including coronavirus patients. Together we will overcome this!”Paul, a Bowling Green Republican and an oph...
Tribune News Service
Editorial: Pearl Harbor, 9/11 and coronavirus: Yet again, we say 'never again'
U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams said more than he may have intended Sunday when he compared this week’s expected surge in coronavirus deaths to “our Pearl Harbor moment, our 9/11 moment.”Inconveniently for his boss, President Donald Trump, the comparison was to two other disasters that caught our nation similarly unprepared.The failures this time, however, were even more conspicuous and unforgivable.We say failures — in the plural — because of new revelations that Florida, under former Gov. Rick Scott and now under his successor, Gov. Ron DeSantis, has systematically dismembered the state’s ...
Editorial: Is hydroxychloroquine a 'game changer?' We can hope
President Donald Trump needs to leave medical treatment and advice to the nation’s doctors. Wielding the bully pulpit as he did over the weekend to promote hydroxychloroquine as a breakthrough COVID-19 drug is premature and potentially harmful.This is not a medication for Americans to take on their own or insist upon over all other drugs should they become ill with this mysterious new virus. Political pronouncements are not a substitute for medical expertise.Sold under the name Plaquenil, hydroxychloroquine is in the spotlight because there is no medication approved through regular channels to...
Star Tribune (Minneapolis)
Trudy Rubin: Coronavirus lessons: How South Korea got face masks for everyone and Germany kept fatalities down
As U.S. fatalities from COVID-19 rise, Germany’s death rate from the virus is roughly half that of America’s.As America’s front-line health workers still struggle to obtain face masks, South Korea has a smooth system to distribute masks to its health workers and its entire population.Both countries are democracies and U.S. allies, not authoritarian regimes like China. So shouldn’t we be looking at what these countries are doing right, and whether their methods are applicable here?The German case is particularly interesting because relatively few people seem to be dying. Their fatality rate fro...
The Philadelphia Inquirer
Editorial: The hot mess in Wisconsin over its primary shows why our elections need to modernize
The timing of Illinois’ March 17 primary could hardly have been worse. It took place the day after the state recorded its first death from the new coronavirus and the same day schools were closed statewide by order of Gov. J.B. Pritzker. But he declined to postpone the election, citing uncertainty about arranging a later date.Some poll workers didn’t show up out of fear of contagion, and voter turnout was low. It was probably the best that could have been done under the unexpected and unfamiliar circumstances, but it was less than ideal.Wisconsin, with an additional three weeks to figure out a...
Will Bunch: In Tuesday's Wisconsin primary, Republicans will literally kill you to win an election
It’s become fairly common in the 21st century to talk about “a life-or-death election,” and the performance of President Donald Trump these recent months as the coronavirus crisis came to America proves that’s not always hyperbole. But as I write this on Tuesday morning, Republicans in the great state of Wisconsin are putting a brand new spin on the term. They are forging ahead with an election that could literally kill some of their constituents.Do you think that’s hyperbole? Consider Florida, which — led by its reality-denying Trumpist GOP Gov. Ron DeSantis — plowed forward with its March 17...
The Philadelphia Inquirer
Bill Torpy: When stubborn individualism clashes with a stubborner virus
There’s a truism circulating the internet that aptly sums up the patchy state of self-isolation orders. It says, “Having some states lock down and some states not lock down is like having a peeing section in a swimming pool.”As a nation, our pool has many such sections, even within the regions that are supposedly locked down. The problem, of course, is the coronavirus knows no boundaries, whether they be national, state, county or city lines. And until recently, there’s been a hodgepodge of such directives.I get it. For a long while it was someone else’s problem, whether it be China’s or Italy...
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Editorial: Despite some temporary shortages, COVID-19 panic consumption will end
People who live in New York City need never carry an umbrella. At the first sign of a cloud burst, nearly every corner has a ramshackle opportunist selling chintzy parasols for five or 10 bucks apiece.Supply magically meets demand. Instantly and without orchestration. It’s a microcosm of the way the U.S. economy usually works. Adam Smith’s “invisible hand” rarely fumbles.Needless to say, these aren’t normal times, as some supermarkets are emptied of toilet paper, rice, flour and other staples. Nevertheless, pandemic panic consumption shortly will be a distant memory. The recent grocery cart fr...
Star Tribune (Minneapolis)
DeSantis doing better than Trump in handling coronavirus crisis, Florida poll shows
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Although Gov. Ron DeSantis has taken his cues in handling the state’s response to the coronavirus directly from the president, a narrow majority of Florida voters approve of the job he is doing, while most disapprove of the way President Donald Trump is handling the crisis. That’s according to a new poll by the University of North Florida Public Opinion Research Lab.The poll of 3,244 registered Florida voters taken last week found the decision by both DeSantis and Trump to refrain from imposing strict sanctions on public gatherings until last week — in order to keep busines...
Commentary: Masks and our face recognition future: How coronavirus (slightly) clouds the picture painted by tech firms
Facial recognition surveillance systems are ominous. People see how these tools threaten privacy and civil liberties and consider ways they might resist being tracked and profiled everywhere they go. One option that is regularly tossed around is the idea of frustrating identification systems with clothing and accessories that obscure and distort our appearance.Until now, it’s mostly been art installations and academic projects experimenting with face-jamming. But with the spread of COVID-19 fueling expanded surveillance as well as the number of people who are wearing face masks, scarves and ba...
New York Daily News