Minimum Wage to Increase in 18 States – Here’s How a Rise Could Hurt Workers

What’s going on?

The minimum wage is set to increase in 18 states and around 20 cities and counties for the new year, CNNMoney reported.

Does a mandated minimum wage help workers?

That’s up for debate. On today’s show, Doc talked about how increasing minimum wage ends up hitting workers in the long term when employers have to reduce their hours, work them harder in less time or turn to automation instead of human employees.

“You think randomly you can just mandate $15 without knowing any of these individual companies’ profit margins and what the books are?” Doc asked. “You think they’re making enough to cover that? What if they’re not?”

Companies can’t just magically pay more, and they’re dealing with profit margin expectations and stockholders.

“This is a failure across the board,” Doc said.

Which states are raising hourly minimum wage?

  • Alaska: $9.84
  • Arizona: $10.50
  • California: $10.50 or $11, depending on if the business has more than 25 employees
  • Colorado: $10.20
  • Florida: $8.25
  • Hawaii: $10.10
  • Maine: $10
  • Michigan: $9.25
  • Minnesota: $7.87, rising to $9.65 for businesses passing a threshold of an annual gross revenue of $500,000 or more
  • Missouri: $7.85
  • Montana: $8.30
  • New Jersey: $8.60
  • New York: varies depending on location and company size; learn more here
  • Ohio: $8.30
  • Rhode Island: $10.10
  • South Dakota: $8.85
  • Vermont: $10.50
  • Washington state: $11.50

Do you think an increased minimum wage will help or hurt workers? Let us know in the comment section below

This article provided courtesy of TheBlaze.

DOC: New law going into effect across the country as of Monday. Lots of states have new minimum wage laws going into effect. Federal minimum wage, 7.25 right now. A bunch of states have said we want to hire minimum wage.

Minimum wages are a scam. It's a bad idea. They do not have their intended effect.

But to the extent that we are going to have minimum wages, of course, states should be able to pass a minimum wage. In fact, the federal government should leave it on states. Make it whatever you want, states. The federal government doesn't need involved in this.

Eighteen states are going to have a new minimum wage beginning Monday. Eight states are inflation-adjusted, where they're going up because of previous laws that tie into inflation.

New Jersey, Ohio, Florida, Alaska, Montana, South Dakota, Minnesota, and Missouri. All inflation adjusted. Other states are seeing an increase because of specific legislation.

Colorado and Hawaii, New York and Vermont, all had higher -- or will have higher minimum wages because of the legislature.

Rhode Island, Arizona, California, Washington, and Michigan, all going up.

Minimum wages are a bad idea. The idea is, a minimum wage to, what? What's the point of a minimum wage? You're not taken advantage of? Well, here's the thing, if you feel like you're being taken advantage of, don't work for the company.

But, Doc, without it, they could pay nothing. Great. Then don't work for them. If enough people said, I'm not going to work for them because it's too low, they would be forced to, if they wanted to hire people, raise the salary. Races the hourly wage. That's how it works.

History has proven that. As evident by the fact that, does everybody on the planet -- let's just go to America. Does everybody in America only make the minimum wage?

KAL: Obviously not.

DOC: No. They make more than that. So if companies were just out to screw people, they only pay them the minimum, they pay them more.

For example, after they passed the new tax bill, multiple companies came out, Wells Fargo, AT&T, somebody else -- I think Fifth-Third Bank. Multiple companies came out and said, we are raising our in-house minimum wage to I think $15 an hour. Significantly higher than whatever their state or federal minimum wage is.

Why would they do that? We're talking for hourly employees at the lower end who would be the ones most likely to have a minimum wage-type salary, income.

They're willing to do that. Walmart, who gets a bum rap for, you know, such I low wages and so on and so forth. Walmart, for years, has had less than one or 2 percent of all of their employees making minimum wage. And they made a commitment a year or two ago, that by right about now probably, that no employee would make minimum wage, they would all be over minimum wage.

That's pretty good. Why don't they just pay a minimum wage, how much they would save?

KAL: Legally, they don't have to.

DOC: Exactly. So there's the fallacy number one, that it wouldn't happen without the law. But, again, minimum wage for, what? So people make more.

Is that a livable wage? Because the fight for 15 people say, we need a livable wage. Fifteen dollars an hour. Minimum wage. Fifteen dollars -- so $15 an hour is a livable wage?

KAL: No.

DOC: I don't know where you're living. Lots of these people that say that are living in places like New York City. Fifteen dollars an hour. Even if you're working 40 hours a week, that's $600 a week.

KAL: That's before taxes.

DOC: Right.

That's before taxes. You're making $31,000 a year. That's what that would be?

Fifteen dollars an hour, times 40 hours a week, times 52 weeks out of the year. Thirty-one thousand, that's a livable wage?

KAL: I don't know if you noticed, the average rent in New York is probably about 2,000, maybe 2500 a month.

DOC: Right. Really, really high. So obviously -- and remember, 15, they were saying was the livable wage.

At the minimum wage, at the federal level, it's, what is that? $14,000 a year, if you work 40 hours a week. So it's obviously not a livable wage.

What is a minimum wage then? It's not livable. It's not needed. What is it?

It's just a way for progressives to say, you've got to pay more. And then every day, they constantly say, it's not enough. We got to amp that up. Amp that up. Make it higher. Make it higher. Make it higher.

And if minimum wage was such a good idea, where it finally helps people because they cannot live making less than this -- it's an insult. Then why don't we just make the minimum wage $1,000 an hour?

KAL: Because now you're just being unrealistic, Doc.

DOC: Ah, that's what I heard from others when I suggest this. Okay. How about $100 an hour?

KAL: Still, just unrealistic.

DOC: Well, why?

KAL: Who is going to pay $100 an hour for a burger flipper?

DOC: So you realize at some point the company can't afford that.

KAL: Yeah.

DOC: But you think randomly, you can just mandate 15 without knowing any of these individual company's profit margins, what the books are? You can just go in and say, you must pay 15, because you think they're making enough to pay for that. What if they're not? So they just go out of business and you don't care? Here's what happens, companies don't just pay more and say, well, we're going to make less. They have bills they have to pay. And stockholders to answer to and profit margins, and all kinds of things. So they have to try to maintain that same profit margin. They simply say, you the employees are going to work fewer hours. And the work that we need done, that won't get done because you're working fewer hours. We're now going to say, Kal must do double the work.

We expect more from you in the same amount of time. They cut hours. They cut full-time employees --

KAL: Or they find automation solutions.

DOC: Or they find automation they have to cut. So this is a failure across-the-board. If it's a good idea at 7.25 an hour, based on their logic, then why not pay everybody a million dollars an hour? And guess what, just after a few weeks, everybody is rich, and all of our problems are solved.

KAL: No.

DOC: They know it won't work that way. But somehow they believe they can do it a little bit on the other end.

I have an example from an obvious progressive how this is a failure.

Over the week, last week, a bunch of people reporting on the new minimum wage. And somebody sent me a story from Yahoo finance. Ah, the great financial brain trust that is Yahoo.

Okay. So they have their little reporters there. And the story is reported. Then they're all talking about it. And they have a couple of chicks there. And some dude. And they're talking about this.

And the main reporter, the reporter, she's giving a bunch of the facts and the figures. And this is like, a 30, 40-second clip I want you to hear. Then they go to Rick Newman. He is also a reporter, writer there. Whatever. Yahoo finance.

He starts defending the idea of a minimum wage and challenges the woman on her suggestion that AT&T and these other companies said they're going to pay more and give bonuses now because of the new tax law.

But I think you'll realize that he talks squarely out of his backside and contradicts himself multiple times.

Listen to his arguments based on minimum wage, and then you'll realize, wait. But wait a minute. Then your other argument doesn't necessarily make sense or mean anything.

This is Rick Newman from Yahoo Finance.

VOICE: The states are taking control of this issue, which used to be kind of a federal issue.

VOICE: Yes, exactly.

VOICE: There used to be a federal minimum wage. But it's so low. It's $7.25. Right?

VOICE: Yep.

VOICE: And that hasn't gone up years.

VOICE: Since 2009.

VOICE: President Obama wanted to raise it up to 9 or 9.50. He couldn't get that. And Republicans don't seem likely to raise it at all. So states and cities are kind of saying what --

DOC: So hang on. Pause right there for a second. So to the states' rights points, he sounds like he's glad. States are going to -- local communities.

Because cities -- some cities have higher minimum wages too. That he's happy they're doing this. Hey, they didn't get it done at the federal level.

Republicans aren't going to do it. Obama wanted it, and they wouldn't let him. So good, they're taking it on their own.

Do you say the same thing about states' rights when it comes to other issues? Probably not.

KAL: No.

DOC: But okay. He's happy they're doing it.

VOICE: Kind of saying, well, we'll just take care of it in our own states. And that's what's happening.

VOICE: And do you think that's right? Do you think it should be a state issue? I mean, we know that depending on where you live, the cost of living could be astronomically higher if you're in the northeast compared to say, someone somewhere in the Midwest.

DOC: I mean, I think the shift here is that the federal government is becoming a backstop in -- and if there's enough political motivation in the states to do it, and in cities -- cities can do this too. Let's keep in mind.

Then they're doing it. Of course, the way you want people to get ahead is not by earning minimum wage.

The way you want people to get ahead is to have more skills so they actually demand --

DOC: Hold it. Hold it. Hold it right there.

So you want people -- minimum wage is not going to get them ahead. So why are you advocating this?

You want them to have more than that? Okay. Got you. All right.

VOICE: By earning minimum wage. The way you want people to get ahead is to have more skills so they can actually demand -- get out of the minimum wage. That's kind of an problem, which is a different problem.

But this is a backstop.

VOICE: Yeah. And it's interesting to see the corporations that are now taking a stand as well. So it's getting more and more micro.

Wells Fargo just announced that it will be raising its minimum wage to $15 for its employees. So companies are taking it into their own hands. And many of them are crediting the tax bill, saying that because we are saving money, we're going to be giving it back to their employees, which is a big question that we are wondering.

VOICE: Yeah, I don't buy that.

DOC: Hold it right there.

So the companies have announced that. Right? Back that up about 10 seconds, Kal. The companies have announced, that's why they're doing it.

And he questions, no, they're not.

Okay. They've told you this is what they're doing. But you don't believe it still. Okay. Listen.

VOICE: That are now taking a stand as well. So it's getting more and more micro. Wells Fargo just announced that it will be raising its minimum wage to $15 an hour for its employees. So companies are taking it into their own hands. And many of them are crediting the tax bill, saying, because we're saving money, we will be giving it back to the employees. Which is a big question that we're wondering --

VOICE: I don't buy that, sorry.

VOICE: I'm not sure I translate --

VOICE: Yeah

VOICE: The reason they're doing it is for the right reason economically, which is they have to raise pay to get the workers they need. That's what you want to happen.

DOC: Wait. Wait. What?

They're doing it to get better workers. They're raising it. He doesn't -- won't give any credit to the Republicans and the tax bill. They didn't do it for that.

No, it's not that.

KAL: No.

DOC: No.

They're doing it because that's how you get better workers.

So they're doing it to get -- they're just taking it on their own to get better workers. Doesn't that then show you that you don't need a minimum wage?

KAL: Kind of proves a point.

DOC: Right. He just talked himself around and goes exactly against why we need a minimum wage.

From his perspective, I mean. Okay. A little more.

VOICE: I'm not sure if it will translate.

VOICE: The reason they're doing it is for the right reason economically, which is, they have to raise pay to get the workers they need. That's what you want to happen. And, you know, we're basically getting into a labor shortage in some parts of the country. That's great news. Because then workers get raises for the right reason, because the economy is really humming.

VOICE: Yep.

VOICE: But there will still be some people left out.

DOC: Did you catch it at the end?

KAL: There will still be some people left.

DOC: He talked himself into a corner and realized he was being an outright hypocrite. And was going to be called because -- like, but there will still be some people left behind.

Why would they be left behind? You just said --

KAL: The economy is humming.

DOC: It's humming. We got a labor shortage. And this is going to get it done. They're doing it for the right reasons.

Some people will be left behind.

And what? You believe 7.25 is enough for them? Right?

Oh, it's not. Is 15 enough? Okay. Well, if 15 is good, isn't a million better?

Dude, it doesn't work. It absolutely doesn't work.

You're just an overemotional, illogical, hand-wringing progressive that will not let free markets go because you're ultimately about control.

With all the panic surrounding the coronavirus outbreak, it's important to stay calm and remember where we are as things begin to get worse in the US. We are currently around 50 days behind China in the course of this illness and you won't believe some of the stories and headlines that were out there at the time. Check back each day as we update these stories, here are a few:

February 4th — 63 days ago

The city of Taizhou and three Hangzhou districts will only allow one person per household to go outside every two days to buy necessities, city officials said. The areas between them account for more than nine million people.

Nationwide, despite China's extensive surveillance network with its facial recognition systems and high end cameras which is increasingly used to track its people, the gov has turned to familiar authoritarian techniques - such as setting up dragnets and asking neighbors to inform each other.

Victor Lam, the government's chief information officer, said the wristbands will be connected to a phone plugged into the mains at the wearer's home. If the wristband moves too far away from the phone, an alert will be sent to the authorities.

However, Lam was spotted wearing a mask on Tuesday morning when receiving petitions outside her office from protesters angered at her government's response to the outbreak, just before meeting reporters.

Viruses mutate all the time, but most changes are synonymous or "silent", having little effect on the way the virus behaves. Others, known as nonsynonymous substitutions, can alter biological traits, allowing them to adapt to different environments. Two nonsynonymous changes took place.

China says it has more than 20,000 confirmed cases of the Wuhan coronavirus, representing a huge leap from the 4,400 cases reported as of last week.


February 13th — 54 days ago

Health authorities in China's Hubei province – the epicentre of the coronavirus epidemic – reported on Thursday 14,840 new confirmed cases, almost 10 times the number reported a day earlier, and new deaths attributable to the contagion rose to 242, more than double on the day.

"At some point, we are likely to see community spread in the U.S. or in other countries," Dr. Nancy Messonnier, director of the CDC's National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases. "This will trigger a change in our response strategy."

The coronavirus outbreak may be peaking in China where it was first detected in the central city of Wuhan but it is just beginning in the rest of the world and likely to spread, a global expert on infectious diseases said on Feb. 12.

Global health experts are divided on whether the coronavirus outbreak has peaked or worse is to come, but a more fundamental problem for front-line hospitals and laboratories is identifying when a person carrying the virus becomes infectious to others.

Wuhan's overburdened health workers are unable to confirm many of those who died were suffering from Covid-19, so they will not show up in official figures

Hong Kong schools will remain closed until March 16 at the earliest and an important exam for primary school pupils has been cancelled, the education minister said on Thursday.


February 14th — 53 days ago

Medical personnel in Wuhan, outfitted in protective suits as they battle the coronavirus outbreak, wear diapers as they work through gruelling shifts, often until skin irritation from their masks leaves bloody marks on their faces.

The new cases bring the number of passengers and crew members infected with the virus to 218.

A Japanese health official who visited the quarantined cruise ship Diamond Princess in Yokohama has been diagnosed with the Wuhan coronavirus, Japan's health ministry reported Wednesday.

A cruise ship that spent two weeks at sea after being turned away by five countries over fears that someone aboard may have the coronavirus arrived in Cambodia on Thursday to the relief of passengers and the praise of global health officials.

A labeling mix-up was to blame for a San Diego hospital mistakenly releasing a patient infected with the coronavirus, officials said Tuesday.

Bats, rats and snakes are still flying off the shelves at an Indonesian market known for its wildlife offerings despite a government request to take them off the menu over coronavirus fears.

"This was a sneak attack, like a thief in the night."

"A wartime President."

"A great battle, against an invisible enemy."

"We will win and declare a great victory for our country."

All of these are direct quotes from President Donald Trump, all uttered since March 1st of this year.

And of course, all of them ring decidedly true and make perfect sense. Even Trump's most ardent opponents have referred to the current situation in which America finds itself as a once in a generation emergency, and that we should be on a wartime footing. They've called for more and more power to be handed to, no, more explicitly they've called for more power to be taken by the President to do battle against "The Invisible Enemy," everything from commandeering manufacturing plants to logistics and shipping companies to pharmaceutical manufacturing and research, to nationalizing the banking sector and all mortgages.

On the other hand, the President has preferred to form a partnership with private industries to wage the war. Turning to America's great companies to produce masks, respirators, ventilators, medicine and vaccines that will ensure our country can and will prevail.

The United States – and the entire world – is engaged in a great battle, against an unseen enemy. An enemy that threatens to kill our people and destroy our nation and our way of life. It's an enemy that we have seen and fought before, as a people. We have faced this enemy throughout human history, over and over we've had to battle it. All of us are descendants of survivors of the countless previous wars that humanity has had to fight against this hidden enemy of man.

The enemy is a disease. The enemy is a virus.

The enemy is not SARS-CoV-2, Coronavirus.

No, the virus we're battling against is Slavery.

Call it what you want. Socialism. Collectivism. Communism. Statism. Despotism. A one-world government. Those are all forms of the same thing: some people's individual liberty captured for the betterment and benefit of others. All of those are forms of enslaving some men to the will and needs of others.

A virus is a biological construct. It's a biological disease caused by a virus, an unliving, unthinking sliver of organic material and takes over cells to turn them into factories that produce more viral particles to take over more cells until, ultimately, the host is killed. Doing battle against a virus requires treating both the symptoms caused by infection as well as finding a vaccine that can destroy the virus itself.

But slavery is a political and moral construct. It's a social disease caused by an immoral idea, spread by unthinking, unfeeling human beings who transmit the disease to others turning them into factories that produce more unthinking, unfeeling human beings. They take over the lives of more and more people within a society or a country until that country is destroyed. Doing battle against slavery requires treating both the symptoms caused by the infection within a society as well as finding a cure that can destroy the idea itself.

President Donald Trump is absolutely correct. This is a war.

President Donald Trump is absolutely correct. This is a war. He's also correct, we have fought this type of war before.

But this is not a war against a coronavirus. That's child's play. Terrible though it may be and despite the thousands of lives we may lose to COVID-19, it's relatively straightforward how to defeat it. Prevent the spread, find a cure. And we will. America and the world will survive this pandemic as it has survived a million others in our past. Each of us is the descendent of survivors of a thousand biological plagues.

The President rightly stated, we cannot let the cure for COVID-19 be worse than the disease itself. And he has the right idea in terms of the outcome here: we can't let our response to coronavirus destroy the American economy.

But saving the American economy isn't really the objective. A healthy, productive American economy that enables people to generate wealth and accumulate things is a consequence, an outcome, it's not a cause in itself. What has enabled the American economy to be the most robust and powerful engine for human ingenuity, productivity and wealth generation in world history is individual liberty? Men free to think and build, to seek new achievements and to be rewarded for doing so, to collaborate with each other, to challenge and compete with each other, driving each other to be smarter, to work harder, to find the better way to solve problems.

That is America. That is the battle we're in, what we're fighting to save. Beating COVID-19 is easy, it's only a matter of time. This particular virus may be new to us, but we know the formula for its defeat, much like the long-march to destroy the NAZI war machine in World War II, the writing was on the wall long before Berlin fell. Germany's defeat was inevitable once America entered the war. So too, the defeat of SARS-CoV-2 is already a foregone conclusion, the application of human ingenuity and thousands of years of human inventiveness and knowledge ensures our ultimate victory over this latest scourge.

But that is not the great threat. If the cure for COVID-19 is the slavery of some men for the benefit and betterment of others, then perhaps it would be better for COVID-19 to take us all. If the cost of defeating the biological virus is that we succumb to the political and moral disease of collectivism, then Trump's fear will have been proved right and the cure will have been worse than the disease.

Look at what's being proposed here. In the US, the government should take over every major industry, from healthcare and pharmaceutical companies to grocery and food delivery to airlines to shipping and transportation. Construction, take it over! Banking system, take it over! Stock market, take it over!

And on the global stage, the United Nations is now calling for a permanent 10% global tax on the GDP of every country.

And on the global stage, the United Nations is now calling for a permanent 10% global tax on the GDP of every country.
Ostensibly designed to fight COVID-19, but made permanent to enable the UN to fight future pandemics, as well as the ongoing pandemic of Climate Change…oh, and Poverty and Income Inequality, and sexism and nationalism and a thousand other isms they believe are unfair.

The United States is less than 5% of the World's population, but we represent over 25% of the world's GDP. So, the UN is effectively proposing that about 4% of the population transfer 10% of our wealth each year to support the remaining 96% of the human race, including supporting countries who are our enemies and who seek our very destruction.

What is proposed here is nothing short of the permanent enslavement of the United States for the betterment and benefit of every other national on earth.

There is no doubt the human race will survive COVID-19. Human beings have survived a thousand similar pandemics with barely more than a blip in our progress as a species.

But the plague of collectivism, the idea that some men should be slaves to others, that some people have some sort of right to lay claim to the intellect and productive energy of others, that is the real battle. That is the true invisible enemy that we must yet again defeat.

Ask yourself, would you have some right to charge into Mike Lindell's My Pillow bedding factory and point a gun at him and his workers to force them to produce cotton face masks to avoid being shot? No, of course the idea sounds preposterous and all rational thinking human beings would clearly see that as an immoral, criminal act. And yet many people are proposing that we do exactly that, just the gunman wears a blue UN Helmet or carries a US Marshall's badge.

Alternatively, does Mike Lindell have the right to choose to convert his factory over to making cotton face masks, at his own expense and to pay his workers to make those masks instead of making pillows? Yes, that is moral, that is a human being engaged in activity that he believes to be virtuous and right and, yes, for the love of all that is holy — profitable.

Just as with COVID-19, the defeat of all forms of slavery should be an inevitability. And yet from every corner of our country, the call is for the forced enslavement of some people for the benefit of others.

President Trump has this right. We cannot let the cure for COVID-19 come at the cost of our economy. And if that is the objective, then it is our original principles: individual liberty, freedom of movement and speech, that is what must be defended. That is how we protect and restore our economy and our country. That is how we ensure that our children's children will also be descendants of survivors of plagues and pandemics, whether they are the biological - or the moral kind.

UPDATE: Here's how the discussion went on radio. Watch the video below.


YouTube youtu.be

Glenn gives the latest coronavirus numbers, updating YOU on everything needed to know as Americans and officials monitor China's new COVID-19 virus:

Daily Stats as of 5:30 AM CT (from John's Hopkins)

  • Total Confirmed Cases Worldwide: 1,284,805 (up over 250,000 from 1,030,324 Friday)
  • Total Confirmed Deaths Worldwide: 70,328 (up 16,100 from 54,226 Friday)
  • Total Confirmed Recovered Worldwide: 271,782 (up from 219,896 Friday)
  • 5% of Active Cases are considered serious (requiring hospitalization) Steady from 5% Friday, but down from 19% high back in February
  • Note that about 11% of US Confirmed Cases require Hospitalization, roughly on par with Italy at 12% requiring hospitalization but lower than Spain, where 17% of patients require hospitalization.
  • US has 336,851 Confirmed Cases and 9,620 Deaths, up from 245,380 cases and 6,095 cases Friday
  • The US currently has 309,254 Active Cases of COVID-19, with about 1% of the US Population tested
NY Times: Official US Death Toll Off a Bit...By About 100% https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ICO0KwPFWcI, https://www.wsj.com/video/in-ecuador-epicenter-families-forced-to-leave-dead-outside/B35D7405-55AC-4876-821F-8B995AAEF1BD.html
  • In one Italian village, a Mayor reported he had more than 300 bodies, presumed COVID-19 deaths, which officials had not picked up or counted in Italy's official numbers. "The army told us Friday, then Sunday. We're still waiting," he said.
  • Virus Can Contaminate Facemasks up to 7 Days https://www.scmp.com/news/china/science/article/3078511/coronavirus-can-remain-face-masks-week-study-finds
    • The pathogen that causes COVID-19 is gone within three hours from surfaces like printing and tissue paper, but can last for days on banknotes, stainless steel and plastic, researchers from University of Hong Kong find.
    • The coronavirus that causes COVID-19 can adhere to the outer layer of a cotton surgical face mask for a week, according to a study by researchers from the University of Hong Kong (HKU).
    • "This is exactly why it is very important if you are wearing a surgical mask you don't touch the outside of the mask," Dr. Peiris, research lead, said.
    • "Because you can contaminate your hands and if you touch your eyes you could be transferring the virus to your eyes."
    • In the instance where the public or health care workers must be forced to reuse masks due to short supply, the study recommends using surgical gloves and frequently washing hands immediately after using facemasks.
    USA Today Factcheck: Did Obama Deplete US National Stockpile of N-95 Masks? True! https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/factcheck/2020/04/03/fact-check-did-obama-administration-deplete-n-95-mask-stockpile/5114319002/
    • USA Today researchers Fact Check Daily Wire article from last week that the Obama Administration failed to replenish the National Stockpile of N-95 masks after using for Swine Flu (2009) and Hurricane & Flooding clean up operations (2012).
    • The article notes available funds were used not to replenish masks: "With limited resources, officials in charge of the stockpile tend to focus on buying lifesaving drugs from small biotechnology firms that would, in the absence of a government buyer, have no other market for their products, experts said.
    • Masks and other protective equipment are in normal times widely available and thus may not have been prioritized for purchase, they said."
    • Overall, USA today flags the Daily Wire story as True, lending credence to the Trump claim that the stockpile program was 'in a shambles' when his Administration took over.
    "Most Comprehensive Pandemic Response Plan In History" Bush Plan Based on Spanish Flu Book in 2005 https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/george-bush-2005-wait-pandemic-late-prepare/story?id=69979013
    • In the summer of 2005, President George W. Bush was on vacation at his ranch in Crawford, Texas, when he began flipping through an advance copy of a new book about the 1918 flu pandemic. He couldn't put it down.
    • When he returned to Washington, he called his top homeland security adviser into the Oval Office and gave her historian John M. Barry's "The Great Influenza," which told the chilling tale of the mysterious plague that "would kill more people than any other disease in human history."
    • "You've got to read this," Fran Townsend remembers the president telling her. "He said, 'Look, this happens every 100 years. We need a national strategy.'"
    • Thus was born the nation's most comprehensive pandemic plan -- a playbook that included diagrams for a global early warning system, funding to develop new, rapid vaccine technology, and a robust national stockpile of critical supplies, such as face masks and ventilators, Townsend said.
    • The effort was intense over the ensuing three years, including exercises where cabinet officials gamed out their responses, but it was not sustained.
    • Large swaths of the ambitious plan were either not fully realized due to lack of funding from Congress, or were entirely shelved as the 2008 financial crisis took hold.
    The Latest Casualty: Corona Beer Officially Stops Production https://www.cnn.com/2020/04/03/business/corona-beer-production/index.html
    • Production of Corona beer is being temporarily suspended in Mexico because of the coronavirus pandemic.
    • Grupo Modelo, the company that makes the beer, posted the announcement on Twitter, stating that it's halting production and marketing of its beer because the Mexican government has shuttered non-essential businesses.
    • This week, the Mexican government announced the suspension of non-essential activities in the public and private sectors until April 30 in an effort to curb the spread of the virus. The country has more than 1,500 cases and 50 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins, but researchers fear the actual number of infected and dead could be much higher than reported as almost no testing has occurred in Mexico.
    • Grupo Modelo stated it is ready to enact a plan to "guarantee the supply of beer" if the Mexican government decides to include breweries as essential, according to a statement.
    Japan, Hong Kong May Declare States of Emergency After Virus Researgance https://www.scmp.com/news/asia/east-asia/article/3078542/coronavirus-japan-set-declare-state-emergency-amid-surge, https://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/politics/article/3078491/coronavirus-hong-kong-may-have-impose-wider-lockdown
    • Both Japan & Hong Kong saw new waves of COVID-19 cases as travel and work restrictions were lifted about 10 days ago.
    • Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe plans to declare a state of emergency over the coronavirus pandemic, a government official said on Monday, as a recent surge in infections sweeps Tokyo and other major cities.
    • The news comes after Japan officially moved the 2020 Olympics to 2021.
    • In Japan, An Emergency eclaration, the first of its kind in that Nation, would restrict individual rights and allowing prefectural governors to call for specific limitations on people's activities.
    • It has been made necessary by a rapid nationwide spike in cases that poses significant risks to lives and the economy, an official said.
    • In Hong Kong, officials report they may have to impose strict lockdown with people told to stay home, government adviser says, amid warnings of third wave of infections swamped hospitals over the weekend.
    • The Government put Hong Kong residents on notice for hardline approach to coronavirus seen in countries including Italy and Britain.
    • Epidemiologist Dr. Kwok-yung of The Hong Kong Medical University warns of a third wave of infections as mainland Chinese had resumed work with some traveling to Hong Kong last week.
    • Dr. Kwok-yung recommends reinstating the travel restrictions from Mainland China.
    Dark Days Ahead https://www.cnn.com/2020/04/05/politics/jerome-adams-coronavirus/index.html
    • The US Surgeon General said this week is going to be the "hardest and the saddest" for "most Americans' lives," describing the upcoming grim period of the COVID-19 Pandemic in the United States.
    • "This is going to be our Pearl Harbor moment, our 9/11 moment, only it's not going to be localized, it's going to be happening all over the country and I want America to understand that," Vice Admiral Jerome Adams said on "Fox News Sunday."
    • Adams continued: "I want Americans to understand that as hard as this week is going to be, there is a light at the end of the tunnel."
    • Doctors are expecting peaks in Death Rates to occur in some of the hardest-hit areas, including New York, Louisianna, and Chicago.
    • Washington State, one of the earliest hit states, experienced a peak in cases and deaths nearly two weeks ago, and now new cases and deaths have declined for 2 weeks straight.

    Bill O'Reilly joined Glenn Beck on the radio program Friday to talk about how he thinks President Donald Trump will fair in the 2020 election given the current struggling economy due to the coronavirus crisis.

    O'Reilly said he believes President Trump will win in November if the coronavirus pandemic is under control by this summer, but if schools and businesses are still closed by September, it may be trouble for Trump -- even with former vice president Joe Biden's seemingly declining health.

    "What I've said from the very beginning of this whole ordeal, is that if Donald Trump can get the pandemic under control this summer, he wins. If by September, it's not under control, the kids cannot go back to school in many places, people are not opening up businesses again, he loses," O'Reilly said.

    However, the Democrats have a major problem because Joe Biden ... is tottering. His mental acute is not what it used to be and everyone around him knows that. That's why Andrew Cuomo is warming up in the bullpen," he added. "But Trump knows that his whole future in politics depends on getting this pandemic to subside."

    Watch the video below to catch more of the conversation:

    BILL O'REILLY: Trump 2020 Election Based on Controlling Coronavirus Pandemic by Summer youtu.be


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