National, State, County, bosses, parents, we need all forms of leadership and we need it now. How we lead matters especially during times of crisis when we need competence and vision the most. We need it now, after months of flailing around, things are beyond dire and with Christmas and shutdowns and vaccines and schools and an array of questions, leadership matters.
A good leader listens, a good leader understands but a good leader also leads and when the world gets turned upside down with something like a pandemic, leadership is tough but also necessary. We are emerging from a leadership period never before experienced in America and although the party is almost over, the hangover might last for a while. My advice, let’s move on America.
The virus is primary and a successful vaccine rollout means two things. First establish priorities then use that information for distribution. If you are obsessed about these things, like me, then you already calculated that you are number 137,700,001 in line in the US for the vaccine, which is scary, much better to say I am number 14,300,001 in California or 195,801 in Sonoma County.
Wanna calculate your own number? https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/12/03/opinion/covid-19-vaccine-timeline.html it’s not perfect but it was nice to know who I am behind in line (Healthcare workers, Nursing Home Residents, First Responders, People with Health Risks, Elderly, Essential Workers then Teachers)
So, we’ve established the priorities but the distribution is a little trickier. The most optimistic estimates are for Pfizer and Moderna to distribute 30 million doses by the end of 2020 (which BTW is three weeks away) then when other vaccines get approved, we can expect 25 million doses per month. This means I will be vaccinated in May and the US should achieve 70% herd immunity in August. So much for my Spring dreams of full classrooms plus tennis and golf teams.
Leadership could screw this all up. A market distribution where the rich get vaccinated first could screw this all up. Complications from the vaccine could screw this all up and the anti-vaxers could screw this all up (I put that last group in with the anti-mask, anti-distancing people and I wish them the best-if you don’t believe in science then science will have a hard time saving your dumb ass).
Plus, we still have way too many unknowns. If Sonoma county moves out of the purple tier for two weeks it can theoretically open schools but who wants to put themselves in that situation? Wanna geek out about things like the “Healthy Equity Quartile” then spend a few hours deciphering this site: https://covid19.ca.gov/safer-economy/
The “Corona Virus for Dummies” version is that if we have fewer than 8% of positive cases per 100k people we will move to the red tier (currently we have 14.2% of cases which is why we are in the purple tier). What I really care about is the Sonoma County death numbers, currently at 160 but projected to rise to 400 by February. This is the most important number to me and why I continue to take this virus very seriously. Yes, distance learning sucks and kids are being impacted but the alternative is just not worth the risk.
Bottom line, continue to follow science and hope that the leaders will provide the exit sign to get us out of this dark room but don’t count on it. Learn for yourself and make plans accordingly. This vaccine distribution will be a bumpy ride but nothing like 8 months ago when we were all wishing we had the problems we do today.
Forget about Christmas parties, or big New Year’s gatherings, your Corona bubble has officially popped, but still find ways to exercise, connect virtually with others and take care of yourself. Maybe even make a 2021 resolution to better yourself. Read more, watch less, walk more, drink less, create more, smoke less. Or just ride this thing out as best you can.
What would I do to lead? Glad you asked. Nationally institute immediate stay at home orders at least till the end of the year while developing a fair and comprehensive vaccine roll out plan. Enough of this “each state for themselves”, let’s get some rational, equal and fair plans in place. And how about a stimulus for real people? We’ve been treating the debt like Monopoly money for the last four years anyway, why not continue by getting all Yang-gang with some monthly cash dispersals.
As Cali Governor I would not spend 12k on wine at the French Laundry (I mean, come on, 12k on wine plus trading your reputation for a nice dinner?!? We already forgave you about Kimberly Guilfoyle and now you throw this in our faces! Strike two Gav-o, how are you ever going to make it to the presidency in 2024 with these decisions?). Other than curtailing my dinners out and wine consumption, I would do the math and tell each person on the prementioned vaccine dispersal list exactly when and where they are getting vaccinated.
County leadership should tell each school, business and organization when they can safely reopen and toss all that hybrid biz, safe is safe, not kinda, maybe, sorta safe. To say that if we have a 7% positive rate per 100k means we can open schools but 8% means we cannot is, to quote my favorite recently fired superintendent, Whack-A-Doodle-Doo thinking.
And if you are a parent, make a serious plan for the holiday. Enjoy this time with the kids, play games, talk, cook, make plans for when you will be getting vaccinated and make some fun plans for the summer. It is not worth seeing the grandparents if you have been exposed and we’ve all been exposed. It is not worth little Johnnie having a playdate unless you know all of Johnnies friends and friends of friends and friends of friend’s friends.
400 local deaths by February, that’s grim business, time for leaders to lead.