Tuesday, April 07, 2020

Observations in virus time...

---The HBO series "My Brilliant Friend" is now halfway through its second season.  This is exceptional film making.  The principle players in the film, both as children and young adults, had never been actors and actresses before being chosen for their roles.  Other players were identified in the same way. They learned their roles and played them as real people, as much of their roles related to their real life experiences.  The main set, built to resemble a slum area, is realistic. Others parts of the film are in real locations, beaches and small regional towns.  If one does not share this unequivocably positive view, you must  admit that it is definitely different.  It is in Italian with subtitles, easy to follow.

---The HBO series "The Plot Against America" could have some parallels to the current day.  Each viewer can decide that on their own.  It rewrites history and shows Charles Lindbergh winning the 1940 Presidential election, defeating Franklin Roosevelt.  The heroic pilot sees no role for America in a European war, and sees the Nazis and Hitler as important to defeating the Russian Communists.  It is seen through the eyes of several families in New Jersey, both Jewish and Christian. At times, for me, it was viscerally unpleasant to watch.  Yet the film making is convincing and alarming.

---Here, in real time, so much has changed in the last month.  While this extremely volatile stock market offers significant opportunities for future gains and stupid mistakes, the economy is in serious trouble.  Unemployment is ramping up and will continue to do so.  While Congress is passing bills to alleviate the damage, the personal toll of so much change is wrenching to many.  Social distancing is a concept that can help, but many jobs are essential and families and close friends will be together.  Our President seems unhinged at times, just making stuff up and overriding medical experts.  He had a "hunch".  Yet he definitely enjoys being at the center of the action and speaking every day on televised news briefings, with a new favorite word for reporters who ask questions that he does not like, "snarky".  More to come, unfortunately, and with his base strong his poll numbers are somehow rising.  More to come...


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