Monday Ethics Warm-Up, 7/6/2020: Updates On Baseball, The Pandemic, The News Media, And The Little Girl Who Sang “Tomorrow” When We Needed To Hear It…Like Now

Chin up, everyone!

“Annie” opened in the gloom of the Carter Presidency and the Watergate hangover, and it’s hit ballad, “Tomorrow,” sung by a relentlessly optimistic orphan with her scruffy dog at her side, , became a sensation until everyone got sick of it.

Unlike so many child phenoms, there was a bright tomorrow for the original Annie, Andrea McArdle, the 12-year-old with the freakish belt.  She never made the leap to movies, but she has had a steller stage career that’s still going strong, aided by the fact that puberty was good to her, and her voice mellowed without losing its clarion strength. 

After “Annie,” McArdlehad starring roles on Broadway in  “Starlight Express,” “Les Miz,” “State Fair,” and as Belle in “Beauty and The Beast.” For the last 20 years she’s continuously starred in regional production and tours, national and international, of such shows as “Cabaret,””Gypsy” (as Mama Rose), “Mame” and “Hello Dolly,” and several times in “Annie,” though now, in middle age, she plays the little girl-hating comic villain, Miss Hannigan (third photo, first row).

But she can belt out “Tomorrow”…as should we all.

1. Wuhan Virus Ethics Train Wreck update:

  • Apparently the memo has gone out to the mainstream media that highlighting the George Floyd Freakout/Black Lives Matter mob’s anti-America rampage isn’t helping the cause of getting rid of President Trump. Thus it’s back to fear-mongering about the pandemic. Sunday’s Times was filled with giant, scary maps with big red blotches, and the headline was “Virus Inundates Texas, Fed by Abiding Mistrust of Government Orders.” The only non-editorial content in that headline is “Texas.” Further down on page one, another headline about a story that literally has nothing to do with the virus begins, “As Virus Rages…”

In contrast, there was no mention of how protesters danced on the American flag and chanted “America was never great!” during D.C.’s Fourth of July celebration, or how D.C.’s BLM flack mayor Muriel Bowser allowed the mob to block traffic returning to Virginia after the fireworks.

  • When I saw this story last night, I predicted that it would receive far more publicity than the death of a relatively little known 41-year-old Broadway actor normally would warrant. The reason is that  Nick Codero died from a series horrific complications after being infected–a series of strokes, heart failure, lung failure, the necessary amputation of his leg.

The severity of his reaction without having any underlying conditions is obviously an anomaly, but I see on my Facebook feed that friends are already hyping it to argue that America should remain in lockdown until everyone is living on the dole and wearing rags.

  • It’s not going to work now. People are right not to trust “government orders,” since the states and cities have abused their power with arbitrary restrictions and inconsistent enforcement, made fatal miscalculations (like Gov. Cuomo’s dumping of infected seniors in nursing homes), and the waffling CDC, including Dr. Fauci, has no credibility at all. (Rand Paul’s criticism of Fauci in the Senate hearing last week was  fair and appropriate.) Major League Baseball, having committed to the season starting this month, is noting infections among players, getting them quarantined,  and moving forward, in contrast to the NBA cancelling its season after a couple of infections in the Spring.

Good. Play Ball!

  • An article authored by an immunologist and published in the Swiss magazine Weltwoche (World Week) on June 10th begins,
I feel it is time to criticise some of the main and completely wrong public statements about this virus. Firstly, it was wrong to claim that this virus was novel. Secondly, It was even more wrong to claim that the population would not already have some immunity against this virus. Thirdly, it was the crowning of stupidity to claim that someone could have Covid-19 without any symptoms at all or even to pass the disease along without showing any symptoms whatsoever.
  • Why anyone would trust health professionals after they endorsed mass protesting after the death of George Floyd to show their wonderful wokeness is a mystery. I’ll know I’ll never trust them again.

2. Speaking of baseball, I’ll be speaking about baseball in  a two-hour Zoom presentation for the Smithsonian Associates on July 20, on baseball and the American culture. It’s only $35 for non-members—no, I do not get a cut, just an honorarium—and you can sign up here. I just updated the promo text, which will soon read in part,

After being delayed and jeopardized by the coronavirus, the 2020 Major league Baseball season is finally beginning on July 23, and it couldn’t arrive at a better time. This is the perfect program to help you get ready for it, and for fans and non-fans alike to appreciate more than ever before the sport that has profoundly affected every aspect of American life.

It’s going to be a weird kind of season for sure, with only 60 games and some unique rules, but as the sport has shown so many times since it took root in the 19th century, baseball has the power to bring Americans together …as it did during the Great Depression, as it did during the Second World War (even though it meant using players like Pete Gray, the one armed outfielder). Baseball has been at the center of American society’s battle with corruption, the drug culture (when a pitcher threw a no-hitter on LSD) labor relations, and law.  Most significantly of all, baseball played a leading role in the integration of American society, thanks to a heroic athlete, Jackie Robinson, who knew he would only be successful if he were not merely good but great. More recently, a scandal involving technology-based sign stealing focused the national debate about complex ethical and legal issues that reach far beyond baseball.

Baseball has been a catalyst for less weighty developments in the culture too, for no sport has had as strong an influence on our legends, folklore, mores and entertainment than the National Pastime. It inspired one of our most familiar songs and its greatest comedy routine. It dominates the field of inspiring sports movies; and has added metaphors and expressions to our language that have become part of the American creed.  Baseball has given us icons, heroes, villains, and eccentrics, a U.S. Senator and the TV star of “The Rifleman.” Most of all, it has given us stories, shocking, funny, inspiring, and tragic, and we guarantee you haven’t heard all of the best ones.

16 thoughts on “Monday Ethics Warm-Up, 7/6/2020: Updates On Baseball, The Pandemic, The News Media, And The Little Girl Who Sang “Tomorrow” When We Needed To Hear It…Like Now

  1. “…pitcher threw a no-hitter while high on cocaine”

    Dock Ellis’s story involved LSD. I don’t know if it really happened, because baseball has a long, much-celebrated tradition of liars and the lies they tell.

    • That’s right. It is true, and there is a great documentary about Dock. He was a piece of work, to be sure. My favorite Dock story is when he was drunk on the mound and went nuts, throwing at two batters and finally trying to hit the batter who was on deck.

  2. Why anyone would trust health professionals after they endorsed mass protesting after the death of George Floyd to show their wonderful wokeness is a mystery. I’ll know I’ll never trust them again.

    Public health is as scientific as Lysenkoism, phrenology, and Nazi racial science.

  3. Hehe, eventually Annie the musical pushed Fred Rogers, may he rest in peace, into changing his closing song, also entitled “Tomorrow” to “It’s Such A Good Feeling.” I knew Andrea McArdle was still on Broadway, but I had just about forgotten about her. I haven’t been able to listen to the soundtrack of Annie since my mom bought it in about 1978 and played it again and again (and again), so I’m familiar with getting sick of that song, or any song.

    Unfortunately, the mob rampage isn’t going to stop, probably until the weather gets too cold for it to be feasible. It was a mistake to let that genie out of the bottle, just like it was a mistake for the Baltimore police to stand down in the wake of Freddie Gray and it was a mistake for the cities to allow Occupy to spread across the nation. Now there’s no stopping it, until either winter comes, or every downtown is ashes, every statue is smashed, and Joseph Biden is the 46th President. However, the sympathy for this is beginning to wane, which is why now the media is pivoting back to the pandemic, and will keep the nation’s attention there. It will never get better until after the election, and the Democrats/media will use it as a hammer to try to crush Trump.

    Here in the northeast defiance will just result in more misery, as the governors have made it clear that they will lock everything down again in a heartbeat if they don’t like where the numbers are going and “knuckleheads” as NJ Gov. Murphy puts it, just don’t or won’t get with the program. They really aren’t interested in anyone else’s opinion at this point, and they will not hesitate to close your business permanently or impose ruinous fines if you get defiant. Maybe this will come back to bite the next election, but by then Tom Wolf will be term-limited anyway, Cuomo is banking on the people forgetting and the inability of the GOP in NY to get its act together, and Murphy, I think, is hoping he’ll be in the Biden administration state department, far from the voters. Like it or not, the only way to get out of this is to move, and I can’t do that.

  4. The spin on why the protests haven’t caused spikes in viral transmission is amazing. Apparently people are scared of being harassed by protesters, and staying home like they “should”.

    The whispered implication (no firm confirmation offered, only speculative language) is that the virus is spreading among protesters as predicted, but being offset by reductions in the non-protesting population.

    • Wait. Really? So, if I read that theory correctly, BLM/antifa riots have served a social good by forcing people to stay away from riot-engaged areas? Huh. Toppling statues and burning buildings help slow the spread. Whoddathunk?

      jvb

  5. It was a mistake to let that genie out of the bottle, just like it was a mistake for the Baltimore police to stand down in the wake of Freddie Gray and it was a mistake for the cities to allow Occupy to spread across the nation.

    So who let the genie out of the bottle?

    However, the sympathy for this is beginning to wane, which is why now the media is pivoting back to the pandemic, and will keep the nation’s attention there.

    Will people forget?

    Here in the northeast defiance will just result in more misery, as the governors have made it clear that they will lock everything down again in a heartbeat if they don’t like where the numbers are going and “knuckleheads” as NJ Gov. Murphy puts it, just don’t or won’t get with the program.

    will the same people who took to the streets comply with these lockdowns?

    I did manage to post a series of comments on a Facebook post detailing how this campaighn jumped multiple shivers of sharks.

  6. To answer your question, mostly the Democratic Party, using mobs as militia to destroy business owners and the middle class as well as create a need for more aid and destroy landmarks.

    There is nothing limitless as the universe and man’s ability to forget, and I’m not sure about the universe.

    The people who took to the streets won’t, but the Democrats don’t care about them, they’re their militia. They want us ordinary middle class folks to stay home, use up savings, etc. It will prevent us from writing that check to the GOP, destroy our assets, and, they hope, make us all just cower and say “make it stop! make it stop!”

    They also want Trump to feel like LBJ in the spring of 1965, “I feel like a hitchhiker caught in a hailstorm on a Texas highway. I can’t run, I can’t hide, and I can’t make it stop.”

  7. Re WuFlu: Yeah, lots of coverage of upswing in number of cases, but much less emphasis on apparently greatly reduced mortality percentages (not part of the preferred narrative). There seem to be two likely factors for this ratio shift…increased overall testing, and increased numbers of younger infectees, who appear to be at greatly reduced risk of serious complications (like, ummmm, death) from the infection. Younger crowds hanging out at bars, etc. (…and maybe even riots?, to be fair) is often speculated upon as being the genesis for this particular phase of the pandemic.

    Question is, why is this not considered a good thing for society as a whole, not to be discouraged by further lockdowns? Isn’t it just the sort of thing needed to advance a state of herd immunity, by creating a growing pool of non-infectable survivors to reduce vectors for spread of the virus?

    • We, here in Houston, Harris County, Texas, have to contend with this mindboggling reasoning from the County Judge:

      Yes, we are doomed.

      jvb

      • People really need to read the whole article published,in WeltWoche

        According to the full article the quick turnaround PCR test will likely result in many many more false positives because it replicates long dead sequences of the virus so a positive result will be returned on debris that is not necessarily an active virus. This this equivalent to claiming you have a hand grenade when you really only have a tiny fragment of an exploded one.

        • Why would “community leaders” want to count more positive results than actual results? The conspiracy nutcase in my head keeps saying that Wu Han flu, the economic collapse, and social unrest are the results of Orange Man Bad’s failed policies and he needs to be gone ASAP. Black Lives Matter is destroying the social fabric; Wu Han is destroying the healthcare system, along with shutting down economies to punish people for following vague and confusing edicts issued by power hungry and incompetent public officials like Lina Hidalgo. Her statement is more self-indicting than she realizes. She whines and complains that Gov. Abbott overrode her decrees and her ability to enforce her orders, where she would prefer to have the entire country on lock down until further notice (or at least November 4, where a miracle cure will suddenly become available, saving lives and peace will break out across the land).

          • Jvb

            Community leaders dont ask questions from the medical community that is being 100 % compensated by the feds to treat anyone testing positive. They just accept what they are told and if they have concerns those are weighed against the short term probability of political backlash for going against the conventional wisdom.

            I have no faith in any medical expert. I have found that they are more often wrong on what is best for you than not. Case in point: The creation of the Opioid epidemic. If they dont understand something they will not admit that and they never admit a mistake.

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