Day 99: 2020 Pandemic. One of the these COVID-19 graphs is not like the others

And it’s even worse than the reported information. We know a number of states are playing fast and loose with their numbers and under-reporting. Also, we’ve seen a sharp decline in New York City in the past month, where the numbers were making up a disproportionate percentage. What the U.S.’s relatively flat line means is we’re increasing dramatically across the country. Each day has various states hitting all-time number that are reported.

A month ago ,I was predicting mass graves in Florida. I’ve been wrong about the mass graves in New York City—they weren’t being buried three deep on Hart Island. The dead were being stacked in freezer trailers. The same will soon happen in Florida.

I’m not being gloom and doom. I’m being realistic. I’m stunned when I see people acting like all is back to normal. It’s not.

If you’re thinking of going to a rally this weekend, consider this graph of Tulsa cases. It will be interesting, and sad, to see what happens two weeks from now.

While the mass protests aren’t good either, it seems being outdoors has a much less likelihood of transmission than being indoors. Regardless, take preventative measures. Oddly, there are people who view not wearing a mask as a political statement. It’s more an intelligence statement.

What can we do?

Protect yourself. Minimize the amount of time around other people, particularly indoors.

WEAR A MASK. Give a shit about people! That’s a human statement, not a political one.

The Green Beret Pocket-Sized Survival Guide (same as above, minus the preparation part in order to be smaller in print)

The Green Beret Preparation and Survival Guide. Also in Kindle Unlimited.

Day 98: 2020 Pandemic. The United States Will Be a Plague State

Facts are facts.

  1. There is no vaccine for COVID-19
  2. We are over 110,000 confirmed deaths due to COVID-19. The true number, given we know many states are suppressing numbers (see Florida) is probably closer to 150,000 when you compare death rates from other years.
  3. We have no Federal policies regarding any aspect of the pandemic. There is inadequate testing and tracing, all delegated to states.
  4. The Federal pandemic task force was disbanded, even though we are still in the first wave of the pandemic.
  5. Cases are rising in over half the states, mostly ones that re-opened without a plan.
  6. No one is immune from COVID-19. Even if one is asymptomatic, you can still spread it to others.
  7. The response to the pandemic at the Federal level was completely bungled and remains incoherent. In essence, nonexistent.
  8. It is likely we will not have an effective vaccine until 2021.
  9. The United States has a strong anti-vax movement.
  10. Our president is holding an indoor rally this weekend with 20,000 people.

What will happen:

Cases will continue to go up. There’s no way around that. We’ll see a death rate of 5,000 a day in a month or so.

Total deaths? Conservatively? A half million directly. Possibly, based on science and math, a million.

That’s direct deaths. We also are already experiencing secondary deaths and that numbers will continue to rise. These are deaths from people who aren’t going to the doctor, who aren’t getting checkups and blood tests like they normally would. Fatal diseases and conditions that would have been detected, will not be.

While the stock market is rallying, we are in the first stage of a bottom-up depression. What that means is that eventually the wealthy-heavy economy will topple.

What can we do?

Protect yourself. Minimize the amount of time around other people, particularly indoors.

WEAR A MASK. One of the most interesting things to occur is the hairdresser who tested positive after working with a number of people; none of whom contracted it because the hairdresser wore mask. Give a shit about people!

The Green Beret Pocket-Sized Survival Guide (same as above, minus the preparation part in order to be smaller in print)

The Green Beret Preparation and Survival Guide. Also in Kindle Unlimited.

Day 97: 2020 Pandemic. What Are The Key Documents You Must Have In a Secure Place and Scanned and Uploaded to the Cloud?

Yes, I was off a day yesterday. Damn time travel. Got me a loop. I’d explain it but then we’d have to use straws and fold paper and all that nonsense.

If you had to evacuate right now, do you have all your key documents in one place? Preferably a portable, fireproof and waterproof lockbox? Are those documents backed up in the cloud in a secure place?

The checklist is from The Green Beret Preparation and Survival Guide and gives you a baseline to work from.

The Green Beret Pocket-Sized Survival Guide (same as above, minus the preparation part in order to be smaller in print)

The Green Beret Preparation and Survival Guide. Also in Kindle Unlimited.

Day 97: 2020 Pandemic. Publication Day, Hell of a Town. Free: New York Minute

Hell of a Town is available now in eBook and print. The fourth installment of the Will Kane, Green Beret series, it takes place in New York City in 1978. There are over 10,000 miles of tunnels underneath New York City. No one knows the full extent. Many have been abandoned. Someone’s taken a section and made a labyrinth. And is hunting. It’s up to Will Kane to put an end to this horror.

Also, the fifth book in the Will Kane series, No Quarter, is now available for pre-order and here is the tentative cover reveal:

In celebration, the first book, if you haven’t read it yet, New York Minute is free today, 6/15 and tomorrow, 6/16. It’s starts slow but catches fire.

Stay safe out there!

Things will get better.

Day 95: 2020 Pandemic. Florida Cases Are Surging and Hurricane Season is Upon Us. Are you prepared?

The glass is half full, and there’s a crack in it. Sadly, we’re seeing a surge in infections in a number of states that have relaxed their pandemic protocol, such as it was. We have no Federal protocol; no coordinated Federal response; no Federal rushed production of PPE. We’ve only got ourselves.

I’m putting the standard hurricane preparation information below, but you need to factor in COVID-19. If you are evacuating, how to do you protect yourself and your family? Do you know where you will be staying? Do you have enough gas to get you there? Can you disinfect after gassing and if you have to stay in a hotel room? If going to be with relatives, do your families have a way of isolating from each other? There are many elderly people in Florida and this all has to be taken into account. If you’re going to the local shelter, be aware they will become hot spots for the virus and make your decision based on that. The best thing. Evacuate as early and as far as possible as possible.

HURRICANE

Evacuate.

That sounds so simple, yet just today I read an article while researching about a family killed because they refused a mandatory evacuation for Hurricane Sandy. Their house had been robbed when they evacuated previously and they didn’t want that to happen again. What happened this time makes a robbery look like such a not bad thing. Hurricanes, unlike tornadoes, move slowly. So you will have warning and time to get away.

Most of the preparation for a hurricane you’ve already done in preparing your house. There are some special actions you can add:

Board and tape windows. Plywood is best for covering window. For taping, use alligator tape, not duct tape. Masking tape is not useful.

Fasten your roof down to the house with tie down straps. Really long ones. You need to have these on hand before the hurricane is coming.

Turn off gas and/or propane.

Clear away debris that can be picked up and smash into the house and windows.

Secure all outdoor furniture. If you have a pool, put the furniture into the water.

Make sure your garage doors are closed.

Looking at the deaths from Hurricane Sandy, over half of them were from falling trees/limbs. Make sure the trees around your house are properly trimmed and if old and unstable, pay to have them removed. It’s worth your life and your family’s lives.

As the storm approaches, turn your freezer and refrigerator to their coldest settings.

Pack any coolers with as much ice as possible. Use them first instead of opening the refrigerator door. If you grew up like I did, your dad was always yelling at your for opening the fridge door anyway.

Fill bathtubs with water.

Make sure all vehicles are topped off.

Know where the closest shelter is for you and for your pets.

If you have to evacuate leave a note saying where you are going.

Unplug everything before leaving.

Turn off electricity, gas and water.

After the hurricane passes, beware of flooding.

Use flashlights or chem lights, never candles.

Do not use tap water after the storm until you are sure it isn’t contaminated.

EVACUATE.

If you did not evacuate and it strikes, then you are in tornado mode:

Underground is always best for a shelter. Those areas that are prone to tornadoes have designated shelters. If your house is in a tornado area, you should have a room, a neighbor’s house with a room, or a shelter already decided upon.

If a shelter is not available, go to the basement of a building. Stay away from windows and glass. Cover yourself with a mattress, cushions, blankets or a sleeping bag. Look around you for objects that could be blown over and don’t be in their path if they fall.

If stuck in a building with no basement, go the lowest floor and the smallest room near the center of the house. Or under a stairwell or in an interior hallway with no windows. Bathrooms are good because you have pipes in the wall which help strengthen them and you can lie in the bathtub. Lie on the ground, face down, and cover your head with your hands and arms. If you have a strong table, take cover under that. Cover yourself with cushions, blankets or a mattress.

Stay in your safe place until well after the danger has passed. Have your GnG bag with you with your survival radio so you can check in to the National Weather Service.

When you do leave your shelter, be careful. Avoid power lines and water that might be touched by power lines. Stay clear of buildings as they still might collapse. Avoid using open flame as it’s likely there are gas leaks.

Tomorrow I’ll post the documents you need to take and also scan and upload into the cloud.

The Green Beret Pocket-Sized Survival Guide (same as above, minus the preparation part in order to be smaller in print)

The Green Beret Preparation and Survival Guide. Also in Kindle Unlimited.

Day 94: 2020 Pandemic. West Point Graduation from a Grad’s Perspective; Free Books;

As I write this, the class of 2020 is marching single-file, social distanced, onto the Plain at West Point where their chairs are set far enough apart per requirement.

There are no families or friends in the stands around the parade field they’ve spent four years sweating and freezing on. I remember doing bayonet drill out there in the sweltering sun in Beast Barracks. Marching in my graduation parade. Also going out there the very first day, hair freshly cut, brain swirling, to sweat my Oath of Office, on my very first day at the Academy.

I don’t have a problem with the cadets being called back. They have to out-process and move on to their branch schools. The fact the president is using them as a prop is the same as him using the bible as a prop; disgusting, but that’s who this president is. He has no honor, no conscience, no thought for another human being other than himself. But for the cadets, this is their duty and they have to do it. Get used to it. They will be required to do much more dangerous things in the near future. Get used to it.

As part of those dangerous things, my first book in the Will Kane, Green Beret series, New York Minute, is free today through the 16th, in anticipation of the publication of the 4th book, Hell of a Town, on Monday the 15th. Kane is a West Point graduate, class of 1966. That was the class most blooded in Vietnam as they graduated into the escalation of the war. 30 members died. Like me, Kane served in the Infantry and Special Forces. The first book is set in 1977; by the fourth, we’ve moved to 1978. A time when there weren’t cell phones or personal computers. When the city appeared ready to go bankrupt and crime was rampant.

Also, Jenny Crusie and I, have revived He Wrote/She Wrote. We’re going through the old blog written over twelve years ago and updating it with what we think now about writing. I know, for me, my process has changed greatly. So you can get an insight into the way we both view various aspects of writing, what we thought, and how we’ve changed. It’s here: He Wrote/She Wrote Again.

Back to survival soon, I promise. Our garden is looking good. The first tomatoes are growing!

The Green Beret Pocket-Sized Survival Guide (same as above, minus the preparation part in order to be smaller in print)

The Green Beret Preparation and Survival Guide. Also in Kindle Unlimited.

Day 92: 2020 Pandemic. Forget About the Second Wave. We Haven’t Left The First. But All Is Not Bleak

Numbers are spiking in 21 states—reported numbers, which in many of those states is far below the real numbers. Most of the states are red and downplaying the pandemic in accordance with what their supreme commander desires. There’s even going to be a rally in OK. Seriously. The attitude is that “it’s over” but it’s still here. There’s no vaccine. Hundreds die daily. Yet it no longer dominates the news coverage. We have protests that also are vectors of spread both for the protestors and law enforcement.

Among those who still care, there is a sense of unreality in the air, along with tear gas and pepper spray from balls (pepper btw is a chemical).

There is no doubt the use of masks slows the spread. Here, I’d estimate a third of people are wearing some sort of mask. For the rest, this is over. Done.

Which makes it a very dangerous time for the rest of us.

What we’re facing is a second wave spiking on top of the crested numbers of the first wave. While New York City and some other centers that locked down for a significant period of time, many other places are cresting. Especially in areas that aren’t equipped to handle it.

On the positive side, I am heartened at the pushback against this administration’s overt racism. General Milley said he was wrong to participate in the events of Trump’s photo op after peaceful protestors were illegally attacked. Trump’s ploy to politicize the military seems to have failed; for now. We’re seeing the Confederate battle flag rightfully banned in many places. It is a symbol of racism and treason. We’re seeing a strong push to rename military posts that currently are named after losing traitors. I’ve been stationed at Fort Benning, Fort Hood and Fort Bragg and never understood why they had those names. Not only were those men traitors, they were shitty generals.

Let’s stay safe and as positive as we can be in dark times.

The Green Beret Pocket-Sized Survival Guide (same as above, minus the preparation part in order to be smaller in print)

The Green Beret Preparation and Survival Guide. Also in Kindle Unlimited.

Day 90: 2020 Pandemic. Juking the Stats

I started writing a post about how certain states are suppressing the true numbers of deaths from COVID-19 and the spread and I just don’t have the energy. Juking the Stats comes from The Wire.

I keep thinking about the sound that Martin Gugino’s head made when it hit the ground. Watching the video from across the street you can hear it and you can even see the police in the front line pause and look as they hear it.

Sure. Faked. Part of “Antifa”. Just when you think a person can’t get any more disgusting, you have to accept there is no bottom.

I’ve trained police SWAT teams. I’ve also trained units at crowd control. At this point, I despair of the amount of brutality I’m seeing from these thugs attacking protestors.

We are in deep, deep trouble.

The Green Beret Pocket-Sized Survival Guide (same as above, minus the preparation part in order to be smaller in print)

The Green Beret Preparation and Survival Guide. Also in Kindle Unlimited.

Day 87: 2020 Pandemic. 6 June. D-Day. True Leaders Take Responsibility

The note is what Eisenhower penned in case the D-Day landings failed.

The most obvious part of it is that he was going to take complete responsibility. No passing the buck. No “I’m not responsible at all”.

The second is that he was prepared for the contingency of failure. That’s key. He knew the awesome responsibility of his decision. People tend to forget that Eisenhower never saw combat firsthand. He didn’t deploy during the First World War and his rise was so fast after the onset of WWII that he never had a field command. Pretty amazing when you think of it. In a way, he was more a politician than a military strategist. His amazing skill was making disparate egos come together for a common goal. He commanded the greatest army the world has ever seen, composed of numerous countries.

Most importantly, he was a true leader.

We’ll be getting back to survival topics soon; because the second wave is ahead and other natural disasters seem to be blossoming.

The Green Beret Pocket-Sized Survival Guide (same as above, minus the preparation part in order to be smaller in print)

The Green Beret Preparation and Survival Guide. Also in Kindle Unlimited.

Day 85: 2020 Pandemic. Suspension of Disbelief

As a fiction writer, we often discuss “suspension of disbelief”. What that means is getting the reader so caught up in the story, that they don’t stop and go: “Wait! That’s not real.”

As we see General Mattis finally weighing in on matters, it’s another day requiring suspension of disbelief in listening to the president’s narrative. As he does with almost all people who formerly worked for him, Trump immediately took to Twitter to denigrate General Mattis. Which requires one to not believe all the speeches, tweets, and other times Trump praised the man. Those weren’t true, apparently. We’re to believe this narrative.  

Trump always claims to bring in the best people and then calls them the worst people afterward. There’s a disconnect there somewhere. Both cannot be true. It’s sad to watch the suspension of disbelief among his supporters as they defend his narrative with lies, distortions and inevitable “what about”; as if someone else were president RIGHT NOW. Because RIGHT NOW is the issue.

What’s also requiring suspension of disbelief is the outright lies Trump tells on a daily basis. Lies that are so easily proved wrong. Lies he doesn’t need to tell; but he must, or else the fragile world around his ego would crumble.

Trump is so ignorant he doesn’t even know he’s a traitor. I’m thinking some of his supporters are smarter. I wonder how they feel siding with that? I learned a lot about U.S. Grant writing my Duty, Honor, Country books. Two things struck me about him early in his life: first, that he freed the only slave that his wife brought into the marriage, even though he was destitute at the time. Two, is that he viewed the Mexican War as imperialistic and evil. And three, because I’m a fan of Spinal Tap (awesome band!), the statement at the very top about traitors and patriots. I’ve been saying it for a couple of years now and I stand by it. Supporting Trump is not supporting to Constitution or the United States. It’s that simple.

BTW: D-Day (Time Patrol) is free today and through 6 June.

The Green Beret Pocket-Sized Survival Guide (same as above, minus the preparation part in order to be smaller in print)

The Green Beret Preparation and Survival Guide. Also in Kindle Unlimited.