What Would Andy Taylor Do

Remember Andy Griffith’s character Sheriff Andy Taylor of Mayberry, NC. He rarely carried a gun, almost never had one in a holster on his hip. Now I know times have changed since the idyllic 1950’s, but a phone call to a radio station caught my attention. The caller said that X number of years ago, probably in the 1960’s – 1970’s, police forces began learning and training using military type tactics. The caller indicated that people at the top in US police forces all began to adopt similar training.

He stated once upon a time, police were trained and called Peace Officers. The new training teaches them to control and dominate a situation and a suspect.

The situation with Rayshard Brooks could have happened so differently with the mindset of a Peace Officer. And in my mind that’s the policing style of (I know he’s just a TV character) Andy Taylor. So ask yourself in the situation with Rayshard Brooks: what would Andy Taylor do?

The police were talking with Rayshard Brooks for about 30 minutes when they decided they had to arrest him. Rayshard tested positive for DUI with a blood alcohol level of .108. About 30 years ago a person was deemed intoxicated with a level of .10 and then I think all states lowered it to .08. Why he chose to resist arrest and fight so hard when everything was going so calmly is beyond my understanding. No doubt that he’s responsible for the escalation that took place once he resisted arrest. Current police training is to take all measures to control and arrest the individual and if fired upon, end the situation as quickly as possible.

What would Andy Taylor have done – in this case? Possibly talk to Rayshard for an hour, just chattin’ away like Andy liked to do and then re-test him, at which point, his blood alcohol could be down to or below .08. Then perhaps have him go into Wendy’s to get his dinner, eat it there and then go home, by which time he would no longer be above the limit. Another approach after talking to him for a while would be have Rayshard go in and get his dinner and then the police drive him home and Rayshard could get his car the next day. That’s thinking like Andy Taylor, Peace Officer.

And for the future of policing, why they’re not widely using the BolaWrap https://wraptechnologies.com/ boggles my mind. Had they had this when Rayshard ran away, he would have been stopped, like with a spider-man spider web, he would be alive today, his daughter would still have her dad.

I’m not in favor of defunding the police and I applaud and support them for the tough job they have. I think there is room for peace officer training. I realize they do get training in how to de-escalate, they should also have some leeway in how to handle situations like in the case of Rayshard Brooks.

COVID-19 Quarantine Update

Well, I admit it, my optimistic interpretation of the data was incorrect. I felt strongly that April 4 was the peak of new cases in the US and that stayed true until April 24 when we had a spike of 38,ooo+ new cases reported.

Perhaps that is due to broader availability of testing, which is finding more individuals who test positive for coronavirus. However, the optimist in me did find a brilliantly shining piece of good news – April 26 – the number of new cases reported was 26,509; the 4th lowest daily new cases since April 1.

But my prediction that we’d be dancing around the MayPole on May 1 will not be the case. Yes, some states will be easing restrictions on May 1, but not to the extent I’d hoped. We have to continue to be wise and listen to the scientists, review the data and go forward cautiously. 14 days from April 24 is May 8 and my new prediction (like economists know, if you keep changing your forecast, you’ll eventually be right) is that by May 8, we’ll be having 10,000 or fewer new daily cases. Be optimistic – let’s make optimism be contagious!

Quarantine Day 27

April 4 is standing tall as the peak day of new coronavirus cases in the US. We’re now 8 days since that date. Looking at data from other countries, shows that in day 10 – 14 from peak the number of new daily cases is around 20% of the peak.

With over 2,000 patients in clinical trials of drugs that have solid promise based on pre-clinical data, those patients will likely be contagious for shorter periods of time reducing the transmissibility and blunting the number of new cases. Also, the prescribing of hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin in early published trials shows elimination of the virus by day 5 whereas patients with no treatment are still positive for 10-12 days. This, too is probably a significant reason for the decline since April 4.

I truly believe pharmaceutical intervention is playing a big role in flattening the curve. Let’s remember that the US pharmaceutical industry is one of America’s greatest assets and is an important part of our excellent and effective healthcare system.

COVID-19 on the ropes

Well, as you know if you keep changing your prediction you’ll eventually be correct. I had optimistically hoped that the number of new cases would have peaked by March 31; however, I missed it by 5 days. The peak, I believe, occurred on April 4 and in analyzing other countries, by day 10 from the peak, the number of new daily cases will be halved.

Call me an optimist – because I am one. With so many patients being treated in clinical trials with several drugs and vaccines and the availability of the safe (on the market since 1955, side effects well known and manageable) hydroxychloroquine, either alone or in combination with azithromycin, the duration of illness is declining in thousands of patients. This reduces the time they’re contagious. That coupled with social distancing and warmer weather will soon have us back to our new normal.

I think we can all gather around the May pole on May 1 (no one seems to do this any more, do they?) and skip around it, singing, “I’d like to buy the world a coke”. I do recall skipping around a May pole in elementary school. What was the purpose? What is a May pole? Questions for another time perhaps. Or feel free to use the comments section to post a reply.

It is now time to unquarantine all of us and move to quarantining just those who test positive, those who have symptoms or who have had recent contact with someone who tested positive.

And let’s start buying stuff so heavily from one country, maybe even make stuff in America again. I’ve been looking for a toaster oven made in any country but China – no can find!

COVID-19 Day 15+1

Okay, so here we are on 3/31, day 15 + 1 from the 15 day social distancing edict. We’ll have to wait a few more days to see if my prediction that our nation-wide effort will result in the US hitting its peak by 3/31. is accurate. It is encouraging to see that the number of daily new cases is increasing but at a decreasing rate. Only 400 new cases reported yesterday.

Troubling though is the quick rise in a few large cities: Detroit, New Orleans, for example.

COVID-19 Day 10

My day 10 observation of the number of new cases and the groundswell of support for the male identifying members of our society to cease shaving their facial hair until we have two consecutive days of a decline in the number of new cases of the corona virus in the US.

Several good signs in the data, many EU countries have recorded a one day drop from their peak of new cases and two countries have had a two day drop, suggesting that globally we may have hit the peak.

Covid-19 Virus Quarantine

Disclaimer: I am no epidemiologist, but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express in Burlingame, CA earlier this month. Importantly, I am an optimist with a bit of experience as a data analyst.

I am doing two things in regards to global Covid-19 virus event. First, I am not shaving my facial hair until we have two days in a row of new cases in the US increasing at a decreasing rate. I think that’s the same as having two days after the peak number of reported cases.

Second, since Day 6 I have been giving snippets of my analysis on youtube.

I have learned how to show the beard’s progress without having to do each day’s session in two video snippets. Day 9 is below:

I believe that the combination of hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin will be extremely helpful in flattening the curve and getting the country back to normal. Provided that there’s sufficient quantity of these drugs and if not, that generic companies fire up their plants and start cranking this out. Knocking the virus out in 3-6 days in early studies will reduce transmission to others and reduce the projected number of deaths. My prediction is that in the US we’ll reach our peak number of daily new cases by or before March 31. I am hopeful that we’ll be back to going to work in our offices and dining out the week of April 7.

Basic Human Rights

We’ve all heard some politicians say something akin to ” Health care is a basic human right. We are for basic human rights, and that’s Medicare-for-all. Everyone gets covered and the government should provide it free of charge.”

Should all “basic human rights” be provided for free by the government? A lot of these (read below) sure sound like they’re basic human rights and good things for everyone to have access to.

Access to housing is a basic human right. We fight for basic human rights and that’s housing for all. Everyone has a place to sleep (single people live in bunk houses, married people get a 2 bedroom, 1 bath, 1000 square foot apartment).

Clothing is a basic human right.  We fight for basic human rights and that’s clothing-for-all.  Everyone gets covered (Gray cotton pants, shirts and socks and flip flops).

Transportation is a basic human right.  We fight for basic human rights and that’s transportation for all.  Everyone gets a ride (on a bus at a bus stop 5 miles from where you live and it stops twice a day).

Food and nutrition is a basic human right. We fight for basic human rights and that’s food for all.  Everyone gets fed (what we think is best for them -daily menu: ham biscuit for breakfast, black beans for lunch, fried chicken and rice for dinner, orange jello for dessert).

Working and living in good buildings is a basic human right. Architect services should be covered. (why not have all buildings look the same, that would be cheaper.)

Monetary income is a basic human right.  We fight for basic human rights and that’s a guaranteed income for all.  Everyone gets paid ($12,000/year, with everything necessary paid by the government, this will be plenty, they’ll tell us.) Buying a Winnebago to travel the country in retirement or just traveling for fun will be too expensive plus the government thinks traveling needs to be reduced to protect the crumbling infrastructure.

All sound good, but when everything is provided, there’s no incentive to improve, to work hard, to discover new things. If clothing were provided by the government, we’d all be wearing the same thing, just like in Communist China and Russia for years in the 1950’s – 1970’s until they opened up to some capitalism. When you get something for free, it has little value to you. When you work hard for something, it is valuable to you.

Same with healthcare, if the government pays for everything, the quality of the care and the quick access to it declines. Budgets will play a big role in our care. For example, only 110,000 hip placements can be paid for in a year. Unfortunately, in July your hip is causing you excruciating pain, but you’re number 110,001 and it’s August, so you have to wait 5 months. Without the opportunity to have their efforts rewarded; inventors, doctors and pharma companies lose a powerful incentive to discover new and better drugs and procedures. Of course we would like to think they’ll still do this for the good of humanity and the prestige they get, but money and wealth is a very powerful incentive. Is this a trade-off Americans want to make?

The Kindness of People

On December 1st, 2019, FOCM recommended (see “Recommended Businesses” tab) Craig Childs of C & R Photography had his photo equipment gear stolen out of his vehicle while doing an outdoor photo shoot. Through social media and a pick-up by the local news, the kindness and support of strangers during the holiday season was magnificently demonstrated. Craig and his wife Rachel (also on my Recommended Businesses tab for keeping my hair looking good; exceptional hair stylist) gave me permission to share this story.

Craig was photographing families at Fort Fisher, NC and donating all the proceeds to “A Safe Place” which helps victims of human trafficking. While doing so, approximately $4,000 worth of equipment was taken from his Jeep. The thieves also stole his sister-in-law’s purse and keys from the front seat and then broke into her car, parked nearby.

Thankfully, the money (around $600) raised for “A Safe Place” was not stolen and he still had his camera and all his family photos. .

Social media shared the story and a local friend started a GoFundMe drive to help Craig replace his gear. In less than 48 hours, $4,000 was raised allowing Craig to replace his photography gear.

Craig was very stunned and appreciative and wrote this on his C&R Photography Facebook page.

Thank you everyone so much!
The go fund me account that my friend set up for me reached its goal within less than two days! I am so overwhelmed right now. Because of your generosity I’m going to be able to order equipment in place of equipment that I lost. Because of y’all I will be able to continue on with my business/passion that I love. I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart to the people that felt compelled to donate, send prayers, everyone that shared my post, everyone that offered to let me borrow their equipment if I needed it, just all of The love and support and friends that called to talk to me to cheer me up, I just really appreciate it all. For people that are wondering if there’s money left over from ordering my gear I plan to donate it to a charity and help my sister-in-law pay for a new key fob for her car!

Additionally, to show his appreciation to the community, Craig gave away two free family photo sessions drawn from people who commented on his thank you post.

Humanity: kindness at work, it is innate – people helping others.