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Something Wonderful: How Marcus Aurelius Responded To A Pandemic

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  • John Venlet April 15, 2020, 2:01 PM

    As a goose is not alarmed by gaggling, nor a sheep by bleating, so neither be you terrified by the clamor of the senseless multitude.

    Epictetus

  • Jewel April 15, 2020, 3:46 PM

    Everything is undermined by dwaddling government.

  • OneGuy April 15, 2020, 3:56 PM

    It’s kind of silly to say we’ll get through this. Of course we will except for all of those who don’t. Oh, for get them, they were old and had underlying health problems and were going to die anyway. This just doesn’t sound reassuring to me. At this exact moment over 28,000 people in the U.S. have died from this. They didn’t get through this! This virus has just begun. The death toll doubles every 5-7 days. It hasn’t even taken hold yet in most American cities. It will. Each city and each state will go through what NY City is going through. Wishful thinking is not the cure for this.

  • PA Cat April 15, 2020, 4:21 PM

    Yes, we’ve seen this movie before: some historians of medicine note that the Antonine Plague appears to be a European extension of a pandemic that started in– guess where?– China around 155 AD. The disease, which may have been either smallpox or measles, spread westward along the Silk Road toward the Near East, where Roman soldiers stationed in that outpost of empire brought the plague with them when they returned to Rome. Other legionaries carried the disease northward as far as the Rhine and westward into what is now France.

    Can’t resist adding an old joke, courtesy of my high school Latin teacher: Q: How did Marcus Aurelius get to Rome? A: The Stoic brought him.

  • Fluella De Vil April 15, 2020, 4:53 PM

    “Right now many people all over the world are understandably terrified of corona virus.” He lost me right there. Most people have an excellent chance of survival. If karma strikes me down for my bad attitude, perhaps it is my time to go.
    https://www.latimes.com/science/story/2020-03-19/coronavirus-odds-of-survival

  • Teri Pittman April 15, 2020, 5:25 PM

    It has an eight week cycle. Infections peak on the sixth week, then start to drop off. doesn’t matter if you use social distancing or not. New York is listing a lot of deaths as virus related, when they aren’t even testing for the virus. And most of the country has little in common with the New York City lifestyle. Even hospitals in the Seattle area are empty now.

  • H April 15, 2020, 6:27 PM

    You learn stuff in the Army you can use your whole life, and one of the things I learned real good in Viet Nam is, people who keep their head down can’t see what they’re doing and get shot. Of course, people who stick their heads up to see what they’re doing get shot, too.

    Thus endeth today’s lesson.

    The point, and I do have one for a change, is when it’s your time to go, you’re gone, and no amount of whining, hiding or running is gonna help. You might as well go out like a man (or a real woman!) and not a mouse, hiding in the darkness amongst empty Spam cans and the little cardboard ta-doot-de-doo tubes left over when the toilet paper runs out. It’s time for the United States to come out of the bunker and get back to work.

  • Kurt F. Miller April 15, 2020, 8:14 PM

    Lighten up, Francis…

  • Gnawbone Jack April 16, 2020, 4:04 AM

    I ‘m in the demographic sweet spot for this Batflu and refuse to let it rule my life. So I get up in the morning (every morning) and do what I do: morning prayers, coffee and greet the day. What else ya got?

  • H April 16, 2020, 5:52 AM

    Really, that’s the best you can do?

  • Callmelennie April 16, 2020, 5:57 AM

    No, each state will NOT go thru what NYC and its suburb cities went thru because only NYC has the ultimate Covid super-vector — the subway. Add to that, the fact that everyone there eats out at least once a day and lives in a postage stamp sized living space

    And to top it off, their woke leaders decided it would be cute to give native son Trump the bird by deciding that Covid wasnt “really” that bad like stupid xenophobe Drumpf said. So no need to avoid the subway or mass gatherings for the latest victim du jour of the h8ters – The Chinese

  • OneGuy April 16, 2020, 9:32 AM

    It can be hard to see. We want to believe it will be over soon. We want to believe that NY City did stupid things and that is why their death rate is huge. They are simply the tip of the spear in this war. Viruses tend to spread until they cannot spread anymore. That is the magic 70% number you often hear about. The Covid-19 virus kills from 4%-0.8% (depending on which stats you look at). This isn’t going to change simply because you live in a small town and don’t take the subway. Eventually, a month, maybe two the virus will go through the population in your state and in your town. When it does somewhere between 4% – 0.8% of that population will die. That’s just the way it is.

  • Fletcher Christian April 16, 2020, 10:36 AM

    OneGuy:

    There is a hidden assumption behind what you say. The figures you quote assume that everyone gets the level of medical treatment – up to and including intensive care with ventilation – they need to recover.

    The problem with that assumption is that if the pandemic was allowed to really let rip, most people wouldn’t get adequate treatment; indeed, many wouldn’t get any at all. Nobody knows what the mortality rate for untreated or inadequately treated covid-19 is, and I hope we never find out.

  • OneGuy April 16, 2020, 11:53 AM

    That is true. That seems to be what happened in Italy. That fear is why the quarantine/shutdown was necessary to allow our hospitals to get the supplies they needed and to be better prepared.

  • Callmelennie April 16, 2020, 1:30 PM

    Our historian friend appears to be decimal point challenged. The common wisdom about the Antonine Plague is that it killed 25% of the subjects in the Empire
    This would be in line with 10-19 million total deaths. If the lethality was a mere 2.5 to 3 percent, that would yield a total population of 330 to 750 million for the Empire, which seems a TAD high

    My sources say this pestilence arrived in the Empire after Rome finally subdued the pesky, militaristic Parthian kingdom. Legionnaires picked up the disease after sacking the Parthian capitol. Some irony — Rome’s great triumph sows a seed that led to its decline and eventual fall

  • James ONeil April 16, 2020, 2:18 PM

    Checked again this morning and yep, by golly, the sky’s still up there.

  • Bill Jones April 18, 2020, 12:17 PM

    The Big Fear is out today.
    Cower in Place!

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