The stock market got off to a very rocky start Monday morning, with Dow futures falling another 1200 points on fears of the coronavirus, triggering an automatic suspension of trading.
Also hurting confidence was a big drop in Asian markets caused by a plunge in oil prices. With people cutting back on travel to avoid the disease, oil producers have been thrown into panic by the possibility of a worldwide glut of oil, exacerbated by a price war between Russia and OPEC. Some experts say that could send oil plunging to as little as $20 a barrel this year.
While really cheap oil and gas seems great for consumers, it won’t help the US if the underlying cause of it slows down the economy worldwide, or if oil prices are so low that American producers can’t stay afloat.
Of course, what’s fueling all this isn’t really disease but uncertainty. The market is reacting to panicky reports and worst-case scenarios. By this time next year, if we’re careful, lucky and blessed, we might be looking back on this turmoil in relief that it all passed quickly and wondering why we let ourselves be so spooked by it. At least, let’s hope so.
In the meantime, keep doing whatever you can to help stop the spread of the coronavirus. To help, here is advice from the CDC:
And here’s that same info in more entertaining form, a music video from a Vietnamese pop group called “Jealous Coronavirus.”
By Mike Huckabee
The traditional symbol of the GOP is the elephant, and the new symbol of the Democratic Party is the elephant in the room. There are so many things we’re not allowed to say in this PC age, according to the Democrats, but the latest “I see nothing!” item on the list is to question Joe Biden’s fitness to take on the most stressful and important job in the world for the next four years.
Let me state a caveat right up front: I have never joined in the attacks on candidates for making slips of the tongue. Having campaigned myself, I know how easy it is to fumble your words when you’re exhausted, sleep-deprived and making the same speech for the 12th time that day. Even great stage actors will tell you how hard it is not to fumble dialogue when you’re repeating it for the 500th time. This is why I never gave Obama a hard time over saying “57 states.” Brain glitches and tongue fumbles are only human. Few people have benefited more from our indulgence of that fact than Biden, whose “glitches” have been laughed off as a charming idiosyncrasy for years.
I also have no patience with the leftists who keep trying to diagnose and psychoanalyze Trump or his supporters without ever meeting them. Disagreeing with leftist policies that have failed miserably everywhere they’ve been tried, or fighting back when you're unfairly attacked, are not mental illnesses.
But Joe Biden’s latest appearances have gone so far beyond mere “gaffes” that they can’t be laughed off any longer. Even those on his own side are starting to question whether, at 77 and after two brain aneurysms, he’s up to the job. Just since I last wrote to you, he’s called Kim Jong-Un “Cum Jong-un,” referred to himself as “O’Biden” (it’s not St. Patrick’s Day yet) and referred to the “Obidenbama” Administration. He also apparently revealed Kamala Harris’ endorsement prematurely. (I won’t pile on the “We’ll reelect Trump” gaffe because that appears to have been taken out of context.) And it’s hardly the first time he’s forgotten Obama’s name on the campaign trail.
There are even whispers that Obama’s seeming reluctance to endorse Biden might stem from his having been around him in person and suspecting something was wrong, but not wanting to say so.
His campaign insists he's perfectly fine, and I hope that's true. But this is no longer just trash talk from the right, but genuine bipartisan concern, and it’s growing. As that first link above reveals, even leftist Matt Stoller tweeted, “Democratic insiders know Biden has cognitive decline issues. They joke about it. They don’t care.”
Podcaster Joe Rogan, who’s endorsed Bernie Sanders, declared, “Stop. Pause. He can't be President. Listen, we can't play any games here folks. This is a really old man who can't talk." And liberal journalist Glenn Greenwald scolded the media for ignoring what he calls Biden’s "obvious cognitive issues," which he’s been writing about for months.
Even Bernie Sanders, who is 78 and had a recent heart attack, thinks the DNC’s decision to schedule more breaks and let the candidates sit down during the next debate is an attempt to help Biden get through the evening.
There’s a theory going around that cynical Party leaders think of Biden as a faux moderate Trojan Horse. Once he’s in, they’ll run things with him as a figurehead or else pair him with a leftist running mate who will quickly take over. That would seem like a crazy conspiracy theory if they weren’t acting so defensive about it.
Bottom line: I don’t want to cast aspersions, and I sincerely hope and pray that Joe Biden is not suffering from any health issues, both for his and his family’s sake and for the good of the nation. But if there is anything serious behind this escalating series of worrying “senior moments,” then the Party and the candidate owe it to the American people to be honest and tell us now. The future of the United States is too important to spring it on us after the election.
I wanted to make sure you also read these comments:
Goofus & Gallant, 2020: If you are exposed to the coronavirus, be gallant and self-quarantine the way Sen. Ted Cruz and Rep. Paul Gosar did after learning they had contact with someone who’s tested positive for it at last week’s CPAC gathering. And let's all remember them, and anyone else who's had exposure, in our prayers.
On the other hand, don’t be a Goofus and break your quarantine to attend a father-daughter school dance at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel.
There’s an age-old question: “If a tree falls in the woods and nobody is around to hear it, does it make a sound?”
The 21st century version, “If yet another Obama Administration scandal is revealed, and the media refuse to cover it like they have all the others, is it still a ‘scandal-free Administration?’”
Bible Verse of the Day (KJV)
"With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love."
- Ephesians 4:2
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