Fuzzy math and politics are no strangers
I have been watching the county-wide COVID case numbers with some alarm. It came as no surprise that the state was unhappy with the direction of infection. What has surprised me are statistics cited in news articles that are consistently far below daily reported numbers.
In the Post Independent online, one can scroll down to see boxed daily updates of new cases. Because it is weirdly difficult to find any archival information, and because I sensed the numbers I had been seeing and those reported by public health did not jive, I began recording the figures in a notebook, the old fashioned way. Here are some observations.
Sunday’s news story has the county reporting 54 new cases in two weeks from July 18-31. My records show 172 new cases from July 19-31. In just three days prior, new cases leaped by 60. That is as many cases as the state allows Garfield County in any two-week period.
Since I started tracking, from July 10–Aug. 2, a little over three weeks, Garfield County has tallied 334 new cases.
A July 20 article tossed out handfuls of numbers for rolling two-week periods. According to the Post Independent’s sources, July 7-20 saw 69 new cases — less than 10% above the state’s mandate. But new cases I counted from July 10-20 (three fewer days) actually totaled 149.
Where are all these vanished cases going? Has the public health department devised a method of shuttling COVID back in time to the murky mists of the past? If so, how does this help our understanding of the disease or protect our collective health?
Back on June 16, John Stroud wrote that Garfield County’s caseload was about to cross the 200-mark. As of Sunday, we were up to 713. In less than seven weeks we racked up more than 500 new cases. That’s an average of more than 73 a week. We are nowhere near the state’s limit of 60 in a 14-day period to keep our special privileges.
I want to trust our local health officials. Reporters, turn on your calculators. Fuzzy math and politics are no strangers, and they are on the loose in Garfield county!
A new America!
Do we dare have faith that our grandchildren will enjoy an America that will be better than the last four years of this nightmare of the Trump Administration? Little did we know four years ago how much worse it could get with Trump trying to lead our country. We could not comprehend the level of corruption that awaited us from the White House.
Looking ahead, after we get through the horror of the coronavirus and all the lies from the White House, I’m praying for a better America for my grandchildren. This won’t happen in the near future, as it’s going to take time to sort through all the confusion and chaos of the last four years. My hope is that the new America will include more people who are accepting of our differences in race, color, culture, and level of education. Hopefully, America will open its eyes, minds and hearts to differences. Because of Trump’s deflect, deny and delay in response to the coronavirus, there are now over 153,000 deaths. This has become Trump’s virus, not China’s virus, as he tries to claim.
If there can be any positive from this nightmare of thousands of people dying every day, perhaps the fact that America had to shut down and people had to stay in their homes, they had time to listen and learn the hard truths of America and it’s history.
Hard truths need to be told and 2020 is a reality check on our country. There will be much pain in the years ahead, as we only grow through adversity! We must have strong leadership, honesty and courage to become a better America, May we all do our civil duty and get out and vote this November. This is the most important election of our lifetime to continue as a Democracy!
All you have to do is vote
The final line from Bruno Kirchenwitz’ letter to the editor in Monday’s Post Independent said, “Save us from the evil Democrats and Socialists.” Wow!
I have never met anyone who had to be saved from me before. I wonder how that would go.
Let’s review: We are currently living in a Socialist society, and have been since Medicare, Medicaid, Food Stamps, Social Security (note the word Social), SNAP, Food stamps, etc.
Democrats did not spawn the KKK, they did not hold the ropes while they lynched innocent African Americans from the 1800s up to just a few years ago. Here we are in 2020 and the KKK is allowed to exist. Given my three wishes from the genie in the bottle and any member of the KKK would simply disappear, never to heard from again. Democrats are not Socialists. Let’s get that clear right away.There are social programs that benefit those who are in need of them. As a Democracy we adhere to many principles that could be misunderstood to be another form of government. As of right now, an outside observer could say our beloved country looks like a fascist, authoritarian dictatorship. And they might be right to some degree.
Tonight on Netflix I will be watching the program Trump does not want us, the American people, to see. We get to see how ICE used Gestapo-like tactics to break into the homes of Hispanics nationwide, separate their children from their parents, and treat these immigrants, many of whom were escaping from oppressive governments in their own countries, with the threat of death or imprisonment in their own countries if they are forced to return. Forget about Q-Anon, there is a small group of racists in the White House currently who have Trump’s ear, who call themselves White Nationalists — code for racists. Jared Kushner being among them. This guy has no experience in politics, but he does have Trump’s attention, since he is like Trump’s daughter, and like Trump’s sons, an admitted white nationalist.
So, let’s skip the blah, blah, blah about protests, because that is every protester’s right, going back to 1776. The moms, the veterans, who confronted the Homeland Security agents head on, and backed them off, and now they are leaving Portland. Now, once again Trump is claiming the pandemic virus is a hoax. A hoax that is going to kill 200,000 Americans by the end of August. So, now it is time for Trump to go. He will leave the White House kicking a screaming claiming any number of reasons why he was cheated, but in the end he will leave, and then, we Americans can get back to the business of saving our citizen’s lives, by protecting them against this pandemic, rebuild our country, renewing our solidarity with our allies in Europe, kick the crap out of Russia with sanctions, and putting everyone who wants to work back on a job.
It is so simple. All you have to do is vote. Power of the people. Power to the people. I love my country.
Wilhelm has endurance and dedication to represent our region
Local elections have long been recognized as more impactful in our daily lives, and in 2020 this seems particularly important to remember. I am endorsing Colin Wilhelm for House District 57. While this is the first time I will get to vote for a friend on the ballot, that is not why I am writing to you.
I work in small business lending and economic development finance and it is critical that the elected officials understand the role of entrepreneurs in our rural economy. Our communities don’t have many large employers. Instead it is the founders and owners who start and grow small businesses that create the sustainable, better-paying jobs, as well as sales tax generation and their involvement in making where we live a better place.
Colin understands this dynamic and we have discussed the challenges and opportunities of economic development in Northwestern Colorado. We have attended the AGNC economic summit together, Colin is committed to the prosperity of the entire region. He has joined his wife to grow a small business, he has seen this reality of running a business in Garfield County first-hand. I am also inspired by the work they do — serving those without a voice, as well as being a resource and advocate for their clients, instead of just focusing on bottom line profit.
This way of giving back through work aligns with how I have prioritized my life and career for 13 years now. Wilhelm is working to be better every day; this is tremendously important to me. The ability to work through challenges and struggles and keep moving forward is what I value most in a public servant. Colin has put a team together, spent time and energy connecting to the constituents, and he persistently follows the important issues to understand the nuances that must be addressed to problem solve for the future.
My favorite quote for so many areas of life is from Angela Duckworth: “Enthusiasm is common. Endurance is rare.” I endorse Colin Wilhelm for this elected office based on the endurance he has shown and the dedication he has to represent our entire region.
Kennedy had it right
We recently visited Ft. Logan National Cemetery, where we noticed on the headstones of my father and my wife’s father they had served in both World War II and Korea. The things they saw and the sacrifices away from their families that they endured for our country were profound.
Yet despite a national pandemic, some people still refuse to wear a mask and preach to us about their rights. Some have even called our Governor a nazi for requiring masks in public places.
What was President Kennedy’s charge, “Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country.”