If only we could bypass the mediots and go straight to the horse’s mouth on coronavirus to get the real deal… Oh wait a datgummed minute, we can!
Just so happens we have one of our O Society people in Italy right now. He lives there with his PhD wife and their three daughters. They’re bilingual too. So let’s ask Mo! He’ll know!
Here’s the Washington Post version of Hello from Italy.
Below is Mo’s it’s my birthday and I’ll rant if I want to keeping it real unfiltered and unpasteurized version of hELLO FROM iTALY, WITH lOVE lightly edited for, you know, goodness’ sake.
by Molten Smith edited by O Society March 20, 2020
Hello FB Fam, I know you are surprised to hear from me as many of you know I have been on a FB hiatus and I have only checked in on my Birthday, which is tomorrow (thank you all in advance for your B Day wishes!!!). However, today I was advised by a good friend (thanx CPT) to make a statement about the conditions here in Italy.
First, let me say everyone in my circle is doing fine and we are all physically safe, although we are mentally exhausted since the kids are home and the schools are closed!! In addition, most businesses are closed except supermarkets and pharmacies and even though we are allowed movement within the city for limited reasons, we are not allowed to leave the area without cause and a letter of certification for work. All sporting and cultural events have been cancelled, even funerals, and we are discouraged from making social contact with others, particularly in large groups.
Second point has to do with advice for my American friends and family. One of the largest differences I see between what is going on here and what is going on in the U.S. is the decisions being made here to address the issue surrounding the coronavirus are NOT influenced by financial and economic interests, and so the health and welfare of the people is first and foremost.
Granted, we too have selfish people here who were not following the rules and although the initial response was quite liberal, the government dropped the hammer quickly to help force people to take this matter seriously, so my advice is two-fold:
First, DO NOT HAVE FAITH IN WHAT THE TRUMP ADMINISTRATION IS TELLING YOU!!
CAN’T NOBODY TELL ME NOTHING
Second, TAKE MATTERS INTO YOUR OWN HANDS FOR YOUR OWN SAFETY AND WELL BEING!!! IT IS GOING TO GET MUCH WORSE BEFORE IT GETS BETTER!!!
Trump has been exposed to the virus on at least two occasions (and at the moment of this posting) he refuses to be tested himself!!
The Trump administration is NOT taking the necessary steps to even begin to get this matter under control as he is actually forcing some in the administration to withhold information and the information released is misleading or downright untrue.
Trump says anyone can get a test but the CDC guidelines under the Trump administration state you have to meet two criteria to get tested:
1) if you have traveled internationally and
2) you have knowingly been directly exposed to someone who has tested positive.
Simply exhibiting flu-like symptoms is not enough!!
So, if you can stay home, do so. If you can keep your kids out of school, do so.
I was very disappointed to see how many people attended the Utah Jazz game before it was postponed… what are people thinking?!?!?! You can see U.S. officials making decisions based on economics and they put their profits ahead of your health!!
The NBA – as well as all the other sports leagues – shouldn’t have had to suspend the season on behalf of the players, they should have had to do so because people refused to attend the games. Why are you willing to put your own life and the lives of others on the line for the commercial interest of corporations?
NY issued a ban on gatherings of more than 500 people… seriously? It should be a ban on gatherings of more than 2 people, and they haven’t even considered shutting down the subway system or closing schools, although I am happy to see school closings in Maryland, Ohio, and Kentucky.
Now here is another difference:
Trump announced a payroll tax cut, which doesn’t add up to much and doesn’t matter if you can’t go to work, and told insurance companies suspend co-pays, which only matters IF you have health insurance in the first place.
Here in Italy, the government put everyone forced out of work onto unemployment, and they suspended all utility payments as well as mortgage payments, not to mention our universal healthcare system, although we are at risk for overburdening the hospitals if we don’t get a grip on the virus.
And although China is being blamed in the U.S. for the outbreak of the virus, the Chinese sent 9 medical experts, 1000 respirators, 50,000 covid-19 tests, and 31 tons of medical supplies to Italy in the last week.
The U.S. is very, VERY behind in their reaction to this crisis and since Trump put America first, there is no one to offer the same help to you!!
The second point is the American people need to take heed to what is going on with the government and corporations and understand THEY DO NOT CARE ABOUT YOU AS A PERSON, ONLY AS A WORKER AND A CONSUMER.
This is one aspect the covid-19 exposed (not as if you didn’t already know), and the second aspect is the healthcare system which is FOR PROFIT, and is not designed to help you stay well, but rather to treat you when you get sick and force you into high medical bills after the fact because money.
So the second part of my advice is to start to make a change in your lives to separate the economy from your lives as much as possible. Save your money and stop spending on non-essentials. Stop buying useless gadgets and electronics, stop spending money at theaters and sporting events, stop buying new cars, using credit and taking out loans. Stop eating out at restaurants and cook at home (and I don’t mean with Blue Apron) with food you have grown in your yard instead of grass. If you don’t have a yard, start a community garden.
Stop financing your own oppression by participation in a consumer society. Finance your freedom instead.
Two things have become very clear to Americans abroad. Trump is incompetent, and Bernie is telling us the truth. You don’t have to vote for the man, but take heed to what he is saying. As for Biden, he is interested in business as usual, and even though at this moment the issue is getting Trump out of office, Biden represents a return to an aunathentic sense of normalcy, while Bernie represents the future of freedom.
The system is unsustainable in its current state. The power to change the system lies in the hands of the people and how we decide to NOT spend our money because the economy is not a reflection of the well being of the citizens, only the corporations.
I could go on, but this post is long enough, just remember… behind every fortune, there’s a crime!
I hope everyone is doing okay, staying safe, I wish you all well.
Power to the people! Have a good day and Happy Birthday to me!!!