Leadership 101

Highway 101 stretches from California up the Pacific coast through Oregon and to Washington. The three states that make up that drive are sharing directions as they develop a regional plan to gradually re-open their economies. California Governor Gavin Newsom will be announcing preliminary plans he previewed on Monday: "The West Coast is guided by science. We issued stay at home orders early to keep the public healthy. We'll open our economies with that same guiding principle." USA Today: West Coast states are readying to reopen economies, together. (Tupac: "Even though you're fed up, you gotta keep your head up.")

+ Not to be outdone, New York Gov Andrew Cuomo announced a working pact with several neighboring states to develop plans to open a strip of of the Eastern US. These pacts give new meaning to the phrase, Coast Guards. (Notorious BIG: "Only make moves when your heart's in it, and live the phrase 'Sky's the limit'")

+ While states from both coasts are working on regional plans, this is not a resurgence of the classic East Coast-West Coast rivalry. If there's any rap battle going on, it's with President Trump who, during an off the rails press conference (even by current standards) claimed: "When somebody is the president of the United States, the authority is total." The Constitution might have a beef with that. (Vanilla Ice: "Go rush the speaker that booms. I'm killin' your brain like a poisonous mushroom.")

+ NYT: Is California a Nation-State? (In fairness, we could all use one right about now...)



NPR: "The coronavirus pandemic is likely to trigger the worst recession since the Great Depression — dwarfing the fallout from the financial crisis a dozen years ago, the International Monetary Fund warned Tuesday."


Summertime Blues

Even after regions begin to re-open, the fight against Covid-19 won't be over. "Before relaxing the guidelines on social distancing the U.S. urgently needs to expand its ability to test for the virus, and to shore up hospitals with sufficient supplies. These recommendations are sensible, but they hinge on the expectation that the U.S. can recover the ground it lost due to its early inaction. It might not be able to." Ed Yong in The Atlantic: Our Pandemic Summer. (My family barely survived our pandemic spring break...)


Running With the Devil

Many of us are spending the quarantine doing more cooking and baking. Others are literally inside the pressure cooker. "There is new pressure, a type of pressure few of us will experience: being one of a handful of experts in a rarefied field of study that's suddenly in the mouth of every news anchor, politician, and ordinary citizen trapped inside their home, who are all hoping that some expert or scientist somewhere will discover a drug to battle the first virus to shut down the globalized world—and that expert, that scientist, is you." The always excellent Rosecrans Baldwin takes you inside the high stakes new life of a coronavirus specialist. "​​Imagine being tasked with rescuing humanity from a pandemic."


You Gaslight Up My Life

"What the crisis has given us is a once-in-a-lifetime chance to see ourselves and our country in the plainest of views. At no other time, ever in our lives, have we gotten the opportunity to see what would happen if the world simply stopped. Here it is. We're in it. Stores are closed. Restaurants are empty. Streets and six-lane highways are barren. Even the planet itself is rattling less (true story). And because it is rarer than rare, it has brought to light all of the beautiful and painful truths of how we live. And that feels weird. Really weird. Because it has… never… happened… before. If we want to create a better country and a better world for our kids, and if we want to make sure we are even sustainable as a nation and as a democracy, we have to pay attention to how we feel right now." Julio Vincent Gambuto with a piece that's been dominating social media: Prepare for the Ultimate Gaslighting.

+ One other thing the virus has enabled us to see. The views. The Guardian: Disbelief in big cities as air pollution falls. I've seen a remarkable change in the Bay Area. The list of lessons to be learned from all of this will be long.

+ Another thing people are now seeing (at least in Tel Aviv): Jackals. (I have two kids, two cats, and two beagles. You know I'm gonna have two jackals before this is over...)


Barry Picking

"The kind of leadership that's guided by knowledge and experience, honesty and humility, empathy and grace. That kind of leadership doesn't just belong in our state capitals and mayors' offices." NPR: Obama Officially Endorses Biden For President.

+ "The victory, by upward of 120,000 votes as of Monday night, came as a shock to Republicans and Democrats alike in Wisconsin, where contests for president, governor and the state's high court in the last four years have all been decided by about 30,000 votes or less." Upset Victory in Wisconsin Supreme Court Race. (No we'll wait for the possible health ramifications of lining people up to vote during a pandemic.)

+ Speaking of poor decisions about public gatherings... DeSantis deems pro wrestling ‘essential business' amid statewide stay-at-home order. (Hopefully the virus can be defeated by a flying heel kick or getting hit over the back with a folding metal chair.)


Truth Or Darien

"The Pakistanis and Cameroonians were brought to the camp by a smuggler they'd hired in Colombia. Smugglers use the camp as a way station, a place to hand off migrants to other coyotes who will guide them deeper into Panama. This was all part of an elaborate, clandestine system that most migrants barely understand. Many have no idea how long it takes to cross the Darién." California Sunday Magazine with an amazing photo essay tracking five days inside the Darién Gap, one of the most dangerous journeys in the world.

+ And like every other story, this one has a coronavirus angle. Migrants Take Out Huge Loans to Pay Coyotes. Coronavirus Could Cause Them to Default.


Garbage Pales

"A restaurant all of a sudden closes now, which has happened by the thousands in not just New York City but coast to coast and around the world, and those rats that were living by that restaurant, some place nearby, and perhaps for decades having generations of rats that depended on that restaurant food, well, life is no longer working for them, and they only have a couple of choices." And those choices are grim. They include cannibalism, rat battles and infanticide.


Feel Good Tuesday

"Olive Veronesi is one of those people, and her plea for beer as she held a sign in the window of her Seminole, Pennsylvania home quickly went viral over the weekend.
‘I NEED MORE BEER!!' it read." Olive is 93. She got her beer.

+ Cars line up to celebrate WWII veteran's 101st birthday with a socially distant salute.

+ Lego is making 13,000 face visors a day to protect healthcare workers in Denmark. (That sounds uncomfortable! I know, I know, but we're all under pressure here...)

+ Emergency room doctor, near death with coronavirus, saved with experimental treatment.

+ 'Such a simple thing to do': Why positioning Covid-19 patients on their stomachs can save lives.

+ Broward judge tells lawyers to get out of bed and wear a shirt for Zoom hearings. (For Florida, this counts as good news.)


Waive Shaking

The most excellent Damon Lindelof has kindly offered to share a serialized story with NextDraft readers to help us, and him, through the quarantine. The first 13 chapters are here.

+ If you're all caught up, here's a bonus article: When Did Shaking Hands Become a Standard Way of Greeting Someone? (We all know when it ended...)