A Coronavirus Coup

Politicians must be particularly in danger of epidemic diseases. They spend their time in parliaments and congresses and meetings and rallies, ‘pressing the flesh.’ So no surprise that

Leader of Italy’s Democratic Party Infected with Coronavirus

But what about this?

As the novel coronavirus spreads through Westchester County’s Jewish community following an outbreak in New Rochelle, it’s perhaps unsurprising that several individuals who attended the 2020 AIPAC conference, which was held in Washington DC earlier this week, have tested positive for the virus.

The incident is rapidly becoming a lesson in just how difficult it is to keep VIPs – including even senior leaders in our government – away from the virus. In a statement released Friday evening, the organizers of the conference confirmed that two attendees had tested positive at an event where Vice President Mike Pence was a keynote speaker, and where several other senior administration officials were present.

Other high-ranking Republicans in attendance included Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Senator and former Trump rival Ted Cruz and Rep. Liz Cheney, the daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney.

What happens if VP Mike Pence tests positive in a few days time? What happens if Donald Trump tests positive as well?

I suppose that Trump and Pence would be quarantined. Would Trump be able to continue with his duties while living in quarantine?  He’d have to conduct all his meetings by phone and video. But there’d be papers needing his signature. What would his Secret Service bodyguard do?

And then what if Trump gets pneumonia? And Pence as well? What if they are both obliged to step down from their positions. Who becomes POTUS? As far as I know the answer is:

Nancy Pelosi – the current speaker of the House of Representatives.

But it could be even worse than that. Nancy Pelosi is likely to be replaced as speaker pretty soon. So what if the new speaker, and President of the United States, turned out to be…

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez?

That would be quite a coup, wouldn’t it?

About Frank Davis

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23 Responses to A Coronavirus Coup

  1. beobrigitte says:

    Politicians must be particularly in danger of epidemic diseases. They spend their time in parliaments and congresses and meetings and rallies, ‘pressing the flesh.’ So no surprise that

    Leader of Italy’s Democratic Party Infected with Coronavirus
    Italy 7,375 (+1,492) cases; 366 (+133) deaths; 650 critical – has now more cases, deaths and critical cases than South Korea!
    As from today:
    16 days after the beginning of the outbreak, the Italian government took decree today to take exceptional measures to contain about 16 million Italians living in 14 provinces in the north of the country, as well as restrictive measures covering the whole country. [source]
    Northern Italy under lockdown
    – Lombardy region (entire region, all provinces)
    – Piedmont (provinces of Alessandria, Asti, Novara, Verbano Cusio Ossola, and Vercelli)
    – Veneto(provinces of Padua, Treviso, and Venice)
    – Emilia Romagna (provinces of Modena, Parma, Piacenza, Reggio Emilia, and Rimini)
    – Marche (province of Pesaro Urbino)

    There is a list of the emergency measures (see link above)
    The problem is, Milan (Italy’s business hub) is inside the lock-down zone and people working there are exempt from the travel restrictions.
    I’m not convinced this is a good idea….
    Russia does not mess around and gets the concept of self-isolation right!:
    Moscow authorities threaten five year prison term for those failing to self-isolate
    Moscow city authorities threatened prison terms of up to five years for people failing to self-isolate in their homes for two weeks after visiting countries hit by the coronavirus outbreak.
    The Russian capital announced a “high alert regime” and ordered anyone arriving from China, South Korea, Iran, France, Germany, Italy and Spain to report to authorities and self isolate for 14 days, on punishment of a fine.
    The Moscow healthcare department on Sunday updated the advice to warn those ignoring the directive could face up to five years in prison if they infect another person as a result.

    Russia 17 (+3) cases; 0 deaths; 0 critical
    France 1,126 (+177) cases; 19 (+3) deaths; 45 critical
    Germany 1,018 (+218) cases; 0* deaths; 9 critical
    [0* = 1 new death (a new case) in Egypt. First death in Africa. A 60-year-old German who arrived in Egypt last week, on March 1, was hospitalized with a fever on Friday, suffered respiratory failure caused by acute pneumonia on Saturday, and died on Sunday]
    Spain 613 (+88) cases; 17 (+7) deaths; 9 critical
    USA 464 (+29) cases; 19 deaths; 8 critical
    https ://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/08/nyregion/coronavirus-newyork.html
    Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo criticized the federal government on Sunday for delays in allowing private laboratories in New York State to test for the coronavirus.
    At a news conference, Mr. Cuomo also announced 16 new confirmed cases of the virus, bringing the total number in New York State to 105. But he said that the state would not know the full extent of the spread until it could do more testing.
    “I would get nervous if the number didn’t go up,” he said. He added: “The more tests we run, the better.” In his most pointed criticism to date, Mr. Cuomo said the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has been slow in responding to the epidemic and then too slow in allowing states to do more testing.

    UK 273 (+64); 2 deaths; 0 critical cases.
    https ://www.telegraph.co.uk/global-health/science-and-disease/coronavirus-uk-latest-news-cases-update-covid-19-death-toll/
    A further 64 people have tested positive for coronavirus in the UK, taking the total case count up to 273, new figures released by the Department of Health and Social Care reveal.
    It comes as 23,513 people have been tested across the country. So far, only two people have died from the disease in the UK.

    If the UK keeps this up, infection progress is slowed down and makes it easier for the NHS to cope!!

    • Rose says:

      Thanks, Brigitte. Would that be the last of the people who visited Italy for the Half Term holidays, do you think?

      • beobrigitte says:

        I really don’t know but I hope so. I also hope businesses cancel their flights to Milan for a while to avoid adding to the cases here.
        The UK is getting it right, though. Testing, testing, testing. Coronavirus positive patients are removed from circulation, should they get ill, they will be treated immediately and with that the severe illness/infection rate is reduced.

        • Rose says:

          “The half term holidays for the spring term 2020 will run from Monday 17 February to Friday 21 February.”

          By my calculations, the children and their families that had been on half term holiday to places like Italy, had been back home for fourteen days, yesterday.

    • beobrigitte says:

      The Cruise ships:
      Diamond Princess 696 cases; 7 deaths; 245 recovered; 32 critical

      Grand Princess
      Nineteen crew members and two passengers have tested positive for COVID-19. The ship is carrying more than 3,500 people from 54 different countries, according to The Associated Press.
      California’s Office of Emergency Services (OES) said a joint state and federal effort will get underway Monday to disembark passengers from the ship in the port of Oakland. Sick passengers will be taken to medical facilities in California, and those who don’t require immediate care will be housed in federal facilities “for testing and isolation.”

      Cruise ship on Nile 45 cases
      https ://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/mar/07/egypt-announces-33-new-covid-19-cases-on-cruise-ship
      Egypt’s ministry of health said that 171 people were onboard the ship, including 101 foreign nationals, amid conflicting reports about whether the boat, its crew and other passengers remain quarantined. Officials said the ship had previously drawn attention after a Taiwanese-American tourist showed symptoms of Covid-19 on returning home.

      https ://www.reuters.com/article/us-health-coronavirus-egypt/egypt-tries-to-protect-tourism-after-coronavirus-outbreak-on-cruise-ship-idUSKBN20V0QJ
      Officials said on Saturday the coronavirus had been detected in 45 people, including foreign tourists, after the vessel reached the southern city of Luxor. Until then, Egypt had reported only three confirmed cases of the virus.
      The ministers of tourism, health and civil aviation toured a temple on Sunday in central Luxor, across the Nile from the Valley of the Kings where pharaohs were buried in tombs carved into rock.
      “We are here to respond to rumors saying that there are no tourists and people are afraid of coming. Thank God, people are here,” Khaled al-Anani, the tourism and antiquities minister, told state television before the camera panned across to show tourists queuing to enter the site.

      What a wonderful way to spread the virus!

      • beobrigitte says:

        Grand Princess
        A group of British travellers quarantined on the Grand Princess cruise ship said they have no idea when they will be able to return to the UK.

        Although the ship is due to dock in Oakland, California, on Monday, only passengers requiring treatment and state residents will be allowed to disembark.

        It is not known what will happen to passengers from other countries.

        Justine Griffin, of Leicestershire, was on board with her husband Dave and friends Jan and Allen Duffin, and Sharon and Steve Lane, when it was placed into quarantine.

        She told PA news agency: “We won’t be getting off tomorrow as we are at the bottom of the list. First the sick then Californians, then any other Americans.

        “They have no plans for international passengers yet – rumours going round about Texas but nothing concrete yet.”

        The couple, who renewed their vows on board for their 25th wedding anniversary, have not been tested for coronavirus but believe they will have to enter quarantine in the UK for two weeks when they return home.
        This needs checking, though. Just appeared on the feed. Surely they will be put in quarantine before they can be flown home!

  2. Joe L. says:

    I came across this image online today. It shows side-by-side screenshots of the WHO’s guidelines for what one should not do in an attempt to treat a COVID-19 infection, taken one day apart. It’s interesting that on March 7th, they were instructing people not to take “traditional herbal remedies,” but as of March 8th they removed that recommendation.

    However, what caught my eye more is the fact that the WHO also lists “Smoking” as the first thing something one should not do to treat COVID-19 (and they haven’t removed that one). The WHO just can’t resist any opportunity to remind people that they shouldn’t smoke, can they? After all the Antismoking propaganda that has bombarded society over the past decades, how many non-smokers do you think are actually considering taking up smoking to treat this virus? I assume this may have been added in response to the recent study from China (discussed here last month) which appears to indicate that non-smokers are approximately six times more likely to contract COVID-19 than smokers and ex-smokers. But to me, it feels like the WHO has some kind of obligatory mandate to add Antismoking propaganda to everything they publish.

    • Frank Davis says:

      Another example:

      Update (1615ET): NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio just warned that there could be :”hundreds” of cases of Covid-19 in the city in a matter of two or three weeks, up from 13 now.


      He then claimed (without evidence) that smoking or vaping could make a person more susceptible.


      • Joe L. says:

        It seems Tobacco Control is trying hard to not let go of the reins in the midst of an actual pandemic. In my opinion, making unsubstantiated claims like these just further damages their credibility. Good. More opportunities for people to see through their facade.

        It seems there is a growing resentment of the WHO and the CDC for their poor handling of COVID-19 thus far. I just wish more non-smokers were aware of how much time and money these so-called “public health” organizations have wasted on tobacco, when they could have spent that on preparing for contagious, novel pathogens. Heads would roll.

        • Frank Davis says:

          I think that for the WHO and everyone in Tobacco Control the real epidemic is the “tobacco epidemic” cited in the FCTC. They probably see the new coronavirus as a transient, here-today-gone-tomorrow infection, and a diversion from the real task of stamping out tobacco. After all, the war on tobacco is the life work of most of these people. They’ve been at it for 40 or 50 years. It’s the only thing that really matters to them.

      • Саня says:

        Oh, one more doctor without diploma.

  3. beobrigitte says:

    Here an example of how difficult it is to trace “Patient Zero”:
    Coronavirus live updates: Italian outbreak came from German manufacturer, study says; Virginia announces second case
    The epidemic ravaging northern Italy that’s prompted a massive lockdown affecting millions can be traced to an outbreak at a car parts manufacturer in Germany, according to a study by Italian virologists — findings that are likely to shatter assumptions that German authorities had successfully contained the first major cluster in Europe.

    This makes little sense as there were only 4 days between the cases in Munich and the ones in Milan.
    I had come across the young man from Codogno before but it was unclear how he got infected. Apart from that, it is thought that Italy had undiagnosed cases before.
    The first two cases in the Lombardy (Milan) were diagnosed 31. January 4 days after the patient in Munich was.
    https ://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2020_coronavirus_outbreak_in_Germany
    The 2019–20 coronavirus outbreak was confirmed to have spread to Germany on 27 January 2020, when the first COVID-19 case was confirmed in Bavaria. The majority of the COVID-19 cases in January and early February originated from Webasto headquarters in Bavaria.

    If someone comes across this study Italian outbreak came from German manufacturer I’d be really interested. Perhaps international business meetings could be done via Skype etc.?

    • Rose says:

      Italian outbreak came from German manufacturer

      Could this be it?

      18:31 The Bavarian-based employer of the first known coronavirus case in Germany confirmed that two more employees have tested positive for the infection.

      In a press release, automotive supplier Webasto confirmed that one German and one Chinese employee tested positive for the virus, bringing the total number of infected employees to seven, five German and two Chinese employees among them. A child of one of the German employees has also been infected.

      “Both newly infected Webasto employees had close exchange last week with one or more of the five colleagues who tested positive at the beginning of the week,” the press release read. “All seven were together in several longer meetings at the headquarters in Stockdorf.”

      German auto parts supplier Webasto plans largest China sunroof plant

      “WUHAN, March 26 (Xinhua) — German car roof system maker Webasto Group will build a factory in central China to produce 1 million sunroofs a year, its largest such facility in the country, local government sources said Sunday.

      The factory, at a cost of 500 million yuan (70 million U.S. dollars), will be located in Caidian District, Wuhan City, Hubei Province. Construction will take a year and a half.”

      • beobrigitte says:

        Thanks, Rose!
        Yes, these were the first cases. The meeting was in Munich. The Chinese employee had gone back to China and was diagnosed there. The first others (and their families) were diagnosed from 27.1. on.
        I can see it spreading from there – they weren’t all getting ill the same day. And they were told to self-isolate. Carneval was the end of February in Germany and Italy, so people would travel inside the countries and outside as Germany also has a large Italian population (guest workers who came in the 1950s).
        The last Germans repatriated from China around that time were told to go home and self-isolate…..
        Tonight Germany has 1,040 cases.
        The business venture may prove to be a bit much by the time this pandemic is over.

    • smokingscot says:

      This is the second time I’ve seen mention on why the virus is not being labelled a pandemic. It’s in the second section that also confirms your suspicions about funding.


      I did not know that the bss of W.H.O is a thudding great buddy of Bill Gates and, by implication, who he owes his allegation.

  4. beobrigitte says:

    Has South Korea lost it’s head?
    https ://edition.cnn.com/asia/live-news/coronavirus-outbreak-03-09-20-intl-hnk/index.html
    South Korea will contribute $3 million to support the World Health Organization’s international cooperation activities in the fight against coronavirus, said the country’s foreign ministry in a text message to journalists.

    Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha discussed the decision with WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus on Sunday evening, said the ministry.
    The WHO IS at the bottom of this disaster in the first place and needs to be dissolved as a matter of urgency.
    Who CARES about smoking ( or NCDs) in times like this? The anti-smoker infected WHO. Nobody else. But that doesn’t deter the anti-smoking WHO.

    I am glad to see the US president has set his priorities:
    https ://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1236689044366557184
    The New York Times is an embarrassment to journalism. They were a dead paper before I went into politics, and they will be a dead paper after I leave, which will be in 5 years. Fake News is the Enemy of the people!
    At this point in time (testing people is still delayed!)
    USA: 554 (+13) cases; 22 deaths.

    I am trying to find out what is going to happen when the Grand Princess docks. It is a little concerning that there are plans of the staff (about 1100 people) are to be quarantined on board.
    Hopefully this has been reconsidered.

    In the meantime in the UK:
    https ://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2020/mar/09/coronavirus-live-updates-outbreak-italy-lockdown-quarantine-uk-usa-america-australia-recession-fears-update-latest-news?page=with:block-5e65e8838f085f0b8d944bbf#block-5e65e8838f085f0b8d944bbf
    The UK prime minister, Boris Johnson, will chair an emergency Cobra meeting later today to discuss the response to the coronavirus outbreak. The meeting is expected to consider whether or not to move from the ”contain” phase to the “delay” phase of the government’s 4 part action plan . The “delay” phase involves an acceptance that the virus has taken hold in the UK and focuses on “lowering the peak impact and pushing it away from the winter season”. The phase could involve closing schools, banning large public gatherings and urging people to work from home.
    That is EXACTLY the way to go! Also, the BTS will need it’s regular blood donors to continue donating. These in turn need to avoid public transport for the obvious.
    Otherwise, everyone apply common sense: stay at home as much as possible, if you need to go out, avoid crowds of people.

    Germany and France (and Spain?) are learning far too late to take this more serious. Italy, with it’s insistence to keep Milan running may experience further surges. It’s health system (already 650 serious cases) is already beginning to buckle.

    Oh, here the idiocy of the month:
    Saudi Arabia bans shisha nationwide over coronavirus fears
    Saudi Arabia has suspended the serving of shisha in cafes and restaurants across the kingdom to prevent the spread of coronavirus, said the Ministry of Municipal Affairs today.

    Shisha is tobacco smoked on a water pipe popular in cafes around the Middle East.

    A total of 11 cases have been confirmed in Saudi Arabia as of yesterday, according to state media.

    The kingdom has also taken other measures to battle coronavirus including suspending the Mecca pilgrimage, temporarily prohibiting travel to and from Al Qateef province, and halting flights from several countries.
    It is time for a smoker revolt.

  5. beobrigitte says:

    A latecomer to common sense (Germany) has just clocked in the first 72 new cases of the day.
    Apropos common sense: can we please stick with VERIFIABLE data? (Yes, this is incredibly tedious – and the results are often far more boring than theories).

    For the conspiracy theorists I have a new idea:
    “The world decided that too many old people with dementia and other old peoples’ illnesses are bad for the economy.” (I’ve just made this one up, btw)
    How about running away with this one, too?

    • Rose says:

      I’d quite like a little boring news, like no new cases have been discovered today.

      • beobrigitte says:

        Rose, I’m sorry, this isn’t going to happen.
        The good news is that so far there are only 2 so far. Still no serious cases!!
        If Boris keeps this up (rather than containing, minimizing it’s spread by extensive testing and following up) I will be his biggest fan !!!

        Just came back from my Monday shopping trip. At the Lidl there are no toilet rolls and kitchen rolls left. Everything else was as usual.
        At Home Bargains I really did regret having left my phone at home. The toilet roll shelf must have been re-filled and I watched a man loading up his trolley with them.
        Why are toilet rolls so precious? I guess there will be a black market soon!!!
        I did get additional cat food, though. The old beasts are getting on my nerves begging for food!!!
        What I am doing? Living by common sense which is reducing the chances of the raffle of meeting an infected person. Shopping by car, keeping 3 feet distance in the check-out queue (there wasn’t one, btw). Washing hands with soap and water. No concerts and no visits into town, let alone travelling to London.
        Still walking local hiking paths through the fields, though, for relaxation. Normally I rarely meet anybody (dog walkers) there so it should become the place of peace and quiet. I will change things ad hoc if the need arises.

        • Rose says:

          I am mostly staying home and doing my shopping at odd times when there are less people around. No lunches out for a while though.
          Last Christmas was one of those years when everybody seems to give you expensive soap, so I have enough hand soap to keep me going for two or three years.

          I quite understand why people would want to be self sufficient in toilet rolls though, the thought of ever running out is horrifying, but one pack in reserve is probably quite enough.

    • Frank Davis says:

      Or this:

      Journalist Ed Conway of UK Times & Sky News Cheers Coronavirus for Killing ‘Old’ Climate Skeptics – Calls virus ‘ultimate weapon against climate change’

      • Rose says:

        Hardly worth a comment, we are so used to ill-wishing from anti-tobacco after all these years, the ramblings of a warmist aren’t going to impress us.

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