- EntertainmentThe Guardian
Years after his pandemic novel, bestselling author tells CNN he is mystified that US was not better preparedIt has been four decades since Stephen King wrote The Stand, his acclaimed novel about a deadly influenza pandemic wiping out most of human civilization.So the bestselling contemporary horror novelist has difficulty understanding why authorities did not see the coronavirus crisis coming, or take the necessary precautionary steps.“Just in the last three or four weeks people are saying to me, ‘We are living in a Stephen King world,’ and boy, all I can say is I wish we weren’t,” King, who has sold an estimated 350m books worldwide, told CNN.“This has been waiting in the wings for a long, long time. I wrote The Stand about a pandemic that wipes out most of the human race, and thank God this one isn’t that bad, but I wrote that in 1979 and ever since then this has just been waiting to happen.“The fact that nobody really seemed prepared still mystifies me.”King has been outspoken in his criticism of Donald Trump’s reaction to the crisis. On Sunday he added Ron DeSantis, the Republican Florida governor, to his list of leaders he believes have underperformed. DeSantis has been under fire for not enacting a statewide shelter-in-place order and for allowing beaches to remain open, placing hordes of spring breakers at risk of infection.“It’s almost impossible to comprehend,” King said. “I remember back in the 70s when Republicans laughed at Jimmy Carter as being indecisive and wishy-washy.“The president we have now, and Ron DeSantis here in Florida, these are supposed to be go-to-it guys, the guy you want in charge when something really goes wrong because they don’t waffle, they don’t wishy-washy.”King, who has homes in Maine and Florida, continued: “You had Trump at first saying, ‘This isn’t really very serious, don’t worry, everything’s going to be OK,’ then when the stock market starts to die, when the reality of the thing hits home, he’s talking about, ‘Well, take it easy. This thing is going to be like a miracle, everything’s going to be OK by Easter and we’ll have the churches full.’“And then a couple of days later he talks about a quarantine. [New York governor] Andrew Cuomo didn’t know about it, nobody really seemed to know, it just came out of his head.”DeSantis, a fervent supporter of the president, is following suit, King believes: “I’m not sure he’s ahead of the curve, I think he’s somewhere behind it. This whole situation is a little bit like the barn door has been locked but the horse was stolen, I’m going to say, 10 days ago.”The author did have some good news for fans. Publication of his next book, If It Bleeds, has been brought forward two weeks to 28 April, to entertain self-isolating readers sooner.King noted that the new publication date would be the same as his fellow bestselling author John Grisham’s new novel, Camino Winds.“I want to talk to the publisher about maybe doing a two-for-one,” he said. “Wouldn’t that be cool, a double feature?”
- U.S.LA Times
The deadly outbreak among members of a choir has stunned health officials, who have concluded that the virus was almost certainly transmitted through the air from one or more people without symptoms.
- WorldYahoo News UK
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The harrowing image shows the bodies of deceased COVID-19 patients being stored in a refrigerated truck outside the ambulance bay.
- BusinessYahoo Finance UK
Emotional intelligence, or emotional quotient, is vital to our success in the modern workplace.
(Bloomberg) -- Jem Bendell doesn’t shy away from doom and gloom.The lockdowns and social distancing caused by the coronavirus are giving humanity a taste of the disruptions to daily life that will be caused by climate change, he said.“In modern industrial societies, the fallout from Covid-19 feels like a dress rehearsal for the kind of collapse that climate change threatens,” Bendell said in an interview. “This crisis reveals how fragile our current way of life has become.”The University of Cumbria social-science professor is well-known among environmentalists for his theory of “deep adaptation.” In a 2018 paper, Bendell said that time was up for gradual measures to combat global warming. Without an abrupt transformation of society, changes in the planet’s climate would bring starvation, destruction, migration, disease and war -- the collapse of civilization -- within a decade.Now he’s focusing his scalding assessments on the parallels and links he sees between climate change and the pandemic.As edgy as people may find him, Bendell shares common ground with some of the world’s most sober-minded financial types, like former Bank of England Governor Mark Carney.Bendell is a former consultant to the United Nations, has presented papers to the European Commission, co-authored reports for the World Economic Forum and advised Britain’s Labour Party.He said the first effects of climate change are disasters such as the wildfires in Australia and California, African hurricanes, South Asian typhoons and harvest collapses in the Middle East. Because those factors can disrupt wildlife migration, the second effects of climate change are pandemics, he said.Carry DiseasesWhile there’s no direct evidence linking global warming with Covid-19, animals are moving to cooler areas, according to Aaron Bernstein of Harvard University’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health. That’s brought humans in closer contact with them and the diseases they carry, he said. Epidemiologists say the novel coronavirus originated in bats.Bendell is more willing to make the connection between coronavirus and climate change. He says that a warmer habitat may have caused the bats to alter their movements, putting them in contact with humans.Partly because of that connection, Bendell said governments should commit only to “fair and green” bailouts, and shouldn’t save carbon-intensive industries such as airlines, oil, gas, coal or cement. Instead, they should let the companies approach bankruptcy and nationalize one or two of them to get them aligned with national climate policies.“Keeping the most polluting industries afloat will increase the likelihood of future pandemics,” Bendell said.A fantasyReturning to business as usual is a “fantasy,” Bendell said. Policy makers and business leaders must recognize that climate change will be even more disruptive than the coronavirus, he said.Not everyone is on board with Bendell’s view of the future and his paper, “Deep Adaptation: A Map for Navigating Climate Tragedy.”The paper wasn’t peer reviewed, and Michael Mann, a distinguished professor of atmospheric science at Pennsylvania State University, said that Bendell “gets the science wrong on just about everything.”“Bendell’s paper is a classic example of climate doomism, where the science is exaggerated grossly in favor of a doomist narrative,” Mann said in an email.Bendell, a professor of sustainability leadership, said it was strange that climate scientists are viewed as authorities on predicting climate’s impact on human societies. He said academics in areas such as sociology, economics and politics are better suited for that.Some authorities echo Bendell’s views. Carney said financial companies could face a “climate Minsky moment,” or a sudden collapse of values, if they didn’t address climate change. Economists at JPMorgan Chase & Co. warned that the most extreme risks of climate change, including the collapse of human civilization, can’t be ruled out. Consulting firm McKinsey & Co. said intensifying climate hazards could put millions of lives at risk, as well as trillions of dollars of economic activity.Steven Desmyter, co-head of responsible investment at Man Group, one of the world’s largest hedge funds, also agrees with Bendell.“No one saw Covid-19 coming,” Desmyter said. “With global warming, there’s a catastrophe of equal or greater magnitude on the horizon that we can still do something about.”For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
(Warning: Spoilers ahead. Do not watch if you haven't seen all seven episodes of Netflix's "Tiger King.") Like a stealthy tiger padding through the jungle, no one saw Netflix's "Tiger King" coming until it was too late to un-see the questionable conditions the animals were kept in, and the questionable taste in tattoos of nearly […]