Time for a bit of panic buying!

Discussion (42)¬

  1. Richard Harris says:


  2. Son of Glenner says:

    Topical and brilliant, Author. I note that J & M are following the two-metre rule.

  3. Someone says:

    God botherers, the only things more virulent and pervasive than a pandemic.
    Maybe they too believe that alcohol will keep them sanitized.

  4. jb says:

    I actually laughed out loud at this one!

  5. two cents' worth says:

    When the righteous do succumb to Covid-19, will J&M say that God/Allah called them home, or will they say it’s evidence that the deceased weren’t as righteous as they seemed?

    Someone, on the March 12 episode of The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, he said that he was hoping to drink enough whiskey that he’d just sweat out the sterilizing 😉 .

  6. Tinkling Think says:

    Barmaid, honey, they are cartoons, inky shapes on paper transferred to screens, they can RoadRunner anything; physics is not something they need to worry about.

    Also, at least one of them is a real, live dead guy with magical super-powers so he can probably do stuff. It’s true that he did need to roll a rock away from an entrance, once, but that was ages ago, he has surely learned a few things since then. [Lock-picking, for example can be partially learnt on a wet afternoon. Our boy has had plenty of those to spare.]

    And while we’re on the subject of unwarranted presences, what are you doing there? Shouldn’t you be at home doing home-type stuff? Everyone else on the planet seems to be.

    You may not be classed as “essential worker”, Barmaid, but we need you and like you so you really should take care of yourself.

    A thought that includes everyone here. Take care, be safe, don’t use aquarium-cleaners to fight The Bug and try to all come out the other side healthy and fine.

    I’d send virtual hugs but that would be breaching the 2-metre rule.

  7. Tinkling Think says:

    A rebuttal to Mo & Jez could be that many Italians are Catholics, many other counties have Muslim populations yet Winnie’s Flu is affecting all of them indiscriminately. There is no statistical relationship between infection rates and religious status or lack of.

    Had there been it would have been the top news item globally forever and whichever church had immunity would have been mobbed.

    But not even Wiccans and Odinists are protected.

    J&M are proven to be wrong.

  8. Paddy says:

    Notable, of course, that two of the largest initial outbreaks around China were linked to religious activity (packed church services in S Korea and pilgrimage in Iran).

    And now most religious services, along with so much of the rest of public life, are cancelled for the time being. May be even more of a change to lifestyle for the regularly religiously observant than for the rest of us.

  9. Son of Glenner says:

    Tinkling Think: We recently saw evidence that the Barmaid actually runs the C&B pub, buying in beer specially for J&M when stocks ran out, so she is not just an employee. My hypothesis is that she is the licensee and lives upstairs, above the bar. When J&M magicked their way in, they rang the service bell and she came down to find them there, waiting to be served.

    If you think my idea is far-fetched, you should take a look inside a Bible, Koran, or other Holy Book!

  10. Baz says:

    Corona: I was sure ‘all creatures great and small – he made ’em all’ was gonna be in there!

  11. Josh says:

    Thanks for the smile. 🙂

  12. Tinkling Think says:

    SoG, it’s a possibility. The days when a lady couldn’t own a business or property are, at least in some countries, gone, hopefully forever.

    And that is a bloody good thing.

    Imagine having a clever species of beastie and making up rules to deliberately waste well over half of all that cleverness. It was simply dumb.

    But I do have a tiny reluctance to see her as the owner-manager as she has always been named “Barmaid” by the customers. Barmaids tend to be employees. “Barkeep” is more the title I’d expect for an owner.

    Still, maybe it’s a gender thing. Maybe olde worlde guys like the two Mo’s, Thor, Mr. Smith and Jesus are more comfortable with “Barmaid” even should she own half the country.

    Me, I’d call her whatever she preferred; maybe the gentlemen do, too?

    I still don’t see the people of any church, cult, sect or coven being protected by Hecate, Ra, Ptah or Ganesh.

    Reality is. Everything else is fantasy.

  13. Wee Jim says:

    A divine miracle!

  14. tfkreference says:

    I appreciate the allusion to the locked room where the disciples hid after the crucifixion. Nice of Jesus to bring Mo in with him. The distancing is probably due to each thinking the other is “the impure” to “keep at a safe distance” at this time.

  15. passing1 says:

    How they sleep after that tho?

  16. OtterBe says:

    Most of the news on NPR was pretty grim today, but I genuinely burst out laughing upon hearing that our (Virginia’s) governor has declared the state-owned liquor stores to be essential businesses which shall remain open.

  17. hotrats says:

    Is Trump placing too much faith in Mike Pence and prayer when he says a miracle will eradicate the Corona virus?
    It’s instructive to see the response of the Church to the Black Death in the 14th century. Ignorant of its causes, they blamed human sinfulness and pride, the cure for which was more obedience and deference to the clergy, a lot of church attendance, and the purchase of masses for the afflicted, and of indulgences for those who found the stricter rules onerous.

    This should have been an object lesson in the predictable failure of superstitious guesswork to solve public health problems. While Church authorities discovered the benefits of not handling corpses, by trial and error, they never put two and two together to work out why priests and church functionaries were dying in greater numbers then the population at large, to consider that congregating in churches might be a bad idea, or why all of their remedies, which included sharing a communion cup, healing by the laying on of hands, and mass self-flagellation, did absolutely nothing to stop the spread of the infection.

    We now know that their remedies were all making it worse, but if you misidentify a problem, all of your supposed solutions will create problems in their own right, and any number of unintended consequences.

    These included rampant profiteering and corruption among priests, including quack cures and promises of divine immunity, contributing to public disenchantment and the move towards Reformation; and in the aftermath, blaming the squalor the plague had caused on the Jews, whose enthusiastic persecution added grist to an long-standing anti-semitic tradition that would result, centuries later, in the Holocaust.

    Over 600 years later, preachers are still ranting about both the disease being God’s wrath, and the guaranteed healing power of Jesus, blaming pride (now Gay Pride) and evil foreigners, and encouraging people to go to keep going to church and passing the collection plate from hand to hand.

    This gives a chilling insight into the imperviousness of their worldview to any reasoned criticism, no matter how scientifically and ethically inescapable. Assuming that they are capable of reading the statistics, they would literally rather watch themselves and their congregations die faster than everyone else, than consider the possibility that their beliefs do not square with reality.

    The fact that Trump is prepared to put in charge of responding to a deadly pandemic, someone who believes that the best cure for AIDS is prayer, and says with a straight face that it will all soon end ‘like a miracle’, is the triumph of the same blinkered 14th century mentality that prioritised the Church getting rich and consolidating its political power as half of Europe died unnecessarily, over everything we have learnt about disease and epidemiology since then. The church only ever had wrong answers, and nothing has really changed in the interim; there are no Iron Age solutions to 21st century problems.

    Although a connoisseur of Darwin Awards, I take no pleasure in the fact that religious communities will suffer disproportionate and unnecessary contagion and mortality by virtue of their beliefs, but nor do I feel any compulsion to set them straight. If they want to give their health as a hostage to fortune, I already pity them for the lack of imagination and initiative that religion cultivates, but pity is an inadequate response to collective Russian roulette.

    I do feel vindication for every time I have taken a religious science denier to task over less important matters like evolution or Noah’s Flood, because exactly that kind of thinking leads to the willingness of some church leaders to turn their congregations into disease vectors for the community at large. There has never been a better time for atheists and believers to completely avoid each other’s company, on purely hygienic grounds.

    In Genesis it is claimed that God gave Man dominion over all the living creatures of the Earth, and the idea that God’s bountiful nature can be implacably hostile to humans could only be attributed to God’s wrath over Man’s sin.

    Christopher Hitchens observed that we now know facts about microorganisms not at the authors’ disposal, and that the reverse is true, the living creatures on Earth have dominion over us, and there’s not a damn thing that God can do about it.

    On the bright side, the more incompetently the pandemic is handled, and more Americans get sick, broke, unemployed, and homeless, the more likely they will belately recognise that elements of socialism underpin democracy. Unless it embodies those Rooseveltian values that inspired the defeat of fascism – equality under law, the collective provision of justice, healthcare, and education for all – democracy becomes a vehicle for entrenching the power of the rich, and denying agency to the people.

    And that realization will mean higher expectations from Americans of their government, and either the end of the soulless, sociopathic braggart in the Oval Office, and everything he and his party stand for, or martial law, and democracy closer to the Chinese model.

  18. Anonymous says:

    Sure liquor is essential in Virginia … San Francisco says marijuana businesses are essential.

  19. Mike Hunt says:

    Notice all the “proper churches” are not following their big book of instructions about what to do with sick people, why not , don’t they really believe?
    Is anyone among you sick? Let them call the elders of the church to pray over them and anoint them with oil in the name of the Lord.
    And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise them up. If they have sinned, they will be forgiven.
    Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.
    —— so says the word of the LORD ———-
    so why arent they doing it?

  20. A Fan says:

    How weird. We are at a time when the faithful could actually help by staying home to send their “thoughts and prayers.”

  21. Me et al. says:

    Liquor stores are essential services, because we have enough people who are so physically dependant on alcohol, that sudden withdrawal would kill them. (There are enough that /could/ die, that some would die.)

  22. Suffolk Blue says:

    I enjoyed the fact that Lourdes has closed its baths because bathing in the healing waters could be injurious to the health of the visitors.

  23. Tinkling Think says:

    Suffolk [can I call you “Suffolk”?], my local Spa closed, too. No more hot bubblies for a while. That’s probably okay as the weather’s been rather nice since they closed England down. I’m surprised that Lourdes shut, there’s money in them there waters and the Church is awfully reluctant to part with a good revenue stream.

    I can’t appreciate the nice days fully, of course, as we’re not supposed to go out much but I have huge garden window-doors and they face Sunwards. Nice. The drawback to this is that I now have to see all of the things I need to do in the garden. 🙁

    Further to the idea that religiots aren’t immune, we have this gem: While I don’t enjoy bursts of glee at anyone’s suffering and I feel for his family and friends, I can’t help having just a tiny touch of schadenfreude [oh, wow, my speelchucker actually likes that one!].

    I wonder whether they’ll finally get the idea that Reality trumps their fantasies all day, every day and absolutely on Sundays?

    Probably not.

    Just as a personal disclosure: were I to have a dying loved one who had no chance of recovery even with the awesome powers of modern medicine, I would be tempted to try Lourdes. Why not? Odds are it couldn’t hurt, much and even if the spa wasn’t magical it might make her feel better.

    Assuming the relative didn’t catch some demons from the sickies crowding out the place, to prevent which, of course, is why they’ve shut it.

    It’s a smart move. They wouldn’t want a massive outbreak laid prominently, scientifically and based on evidence laid at their door. That would be severely unfaithy. It might have lead to unpleasant thinkies among the flock.

    Thinkies are long-term bad for business.

  24. Dirio Candeias says:

    Acoording to worldometers website there are already 4 infected on the vatican. OMG

  25. Son of Glenner says:

    postdoggerel: I love the song! Reminds me of Darwin Harmless and his classic “Don’t Be Divisive” (still available on YouTube), although DW plays the guitar, not the piano.

    Greetings, DW, BTW, hope you are getting on OK and avoiding the dreaded COVID-19.

  26. Laripu says:

    Glenner and postdoggerel, here’s the direct YouTube link:

    I don’t know why, but as soon as I saw it, it also immediately made me think of DarwinHarmless. And you beat me to the punch.

  27. Son of Glenner says:

    Apologies to Darwin Harmless – I wrote “DW” when I should have written “DH”. Anyway, I still wish you, Darwin Harmless, well. I know you have your own health problems, unrelated to COVID-19. There’s no point in saying I’ll be praying for you, as we both know that neither of us believes in that nonsense!

  28. two cents' worth says:

    postdoggerel, thanks for the laughs! The rolled r in prick was an especially nice touch 🙂 .

    Darwin Harmless, I hope that the Spring is bringing you some relief, and that you can find some diversion and respite here at the Cock & Bull.

  29. Mind your own... says:

    The Russion Orthodox have not closed, or restricted access to their churches. You cannot become infected whilst in the house of God. That Russsian Doctor has spoken. Another winner for Putin. There is no pandemic in Russia – In Moscow they will run out of critical care beds within five days!

  30. Dr John the Wipper says:

    Another winner for Putin. There is no pandemic in Russia
    That’s right. Only, there ARE just a few (ten of thousends) extra cases of of pneumonia…

  31. Laripu says:

    I’m at a loss for the words to describe just how stupid this is. This is in Tampa, 23 miles or 37 kilometres from my door.

    The people there will infect each other in the belief that their pastor can cure COVID-19. Then they will go forth and infect others. Some of the infected will be old people. Some will have weakening conditions. Some will die unnecessarily. Stupidity can kill.

    If you think I seem angry about this, you’re right.

  32. Someone says:

    Laripu, that is, ironically, a prime example of Darwinism.

  33. Succubus ov Satan says:

    Of course they would shut Lourdes – they hardly want visitors to realise the ‘miracle cure’ wouldn’t work on the Covid

  34. tinkling think says:

    Succubus, according to anecdotal evidence and reports from “the Authorities” Lourdes waters have cured many thousands of people previously inflicted by cancers, blindness, “paralysis” [not specifying which sort] and other ills. By their logics there is no reason why an infectious respiratory disorder should not succumb to the magics.

    As the magic fluids cure everything there is logically no reason to close them nor any reason to insist in a two yards “social distancing” policy among the incoming victims.

    The only two possible reasons for closing it would be to comply with governmental orders, local, regional or national, or because it might just possibly present a post-drink, post-dip health hazard to to departing hordes of once-sick, now cured humans by way of them being infected by relatives or carers who didn’t partake of the healing liquids. The patients, who would have, could not, of course infect anyone as they would not be carriers.

    As this would have posed a great risk to the community at large, even were only a few carers or relatives to be sick, by way of the exponential-growth nature of viral populations, closing Lourdes was a wise and mature decision by those whose only thoughts were for the best interests of the community they serve.

    Though it does occur to me that they could have achieved the same result by insisting that all carers, relatives and friends accompanying a patient take the waters. That way no one would have been able to spread the virus.

    This policy would have had the added benefit of showing Lourdes to be real and the additional benefit of giving us a global cure to and end of Winnie’s Flu, possibly forever.

    That would have been worth having.

  35. tinkling think says:

    Sorry, no edit-function so please assume a close-italics after “departing”, thank you.

    Oh, and sarcasm mode was ever so slightly on. 🙂

  36. tinkling think says:

    … and I think it should have been “… global cure of and end to …” or, maybe even better, “… global cure and end of …”. As originally typed it is ugly and dissonant. Sorry.

    I fancy sushi. Maybe I’ll have some tea, instead.

  37. OtterBe says:

    Laripu, thanks for the link about River Church. I heard an article on public radio less than an hour ago about a pastor of a Tampa church being arrested after defying the ‘gathering of less than 10 people’ order. Yep: same church. I note with interest that he claims to have machines which sterilize the church—even kills the virus when someone sneezes! I’m betting the authorities will be quite interested to hear about those!

    Of COURSE he couldn’t close: cash in the offering plate is much easier to hide than credit card donations if he was operating remotely. Filthy god-bothering scumbag scammer!

    *Note: I do not have any material evidence that this particular pastor IS a scammer.
    But, 1) he runs a mega-church
    2) he claims to have a way to sterilize the entire church-even saying it’s probably the cleanest building in the US
    3) in the linked article he seems to claim that they prayed the Zita virus away
    4) again; he runs a mega-church. Pretty much self-defining

  38. jb says:

    Tinkling Think — Catholic thinking may be boneheaded, but it isn’t that boneheaded! The Church (like other religions) has had centuries of experience with plagues, and it knows perfectly well that it cannot guarantee miracle cures. In fact, although Church teaching makes a place for miracle sites like Lourdes, Catholic theologians in general, even the most hidebound and conservative, aren’t all that enamored of them, and have long seen that sort of thing as dubious quasi-pagan folk religion.

    In any case, all anyone has ever claimed for places like Lourdes is that sometimes there are miracle cures, and that perhaps there may be less tangible physical or spiritual benefits that play out over the longer term. Believers aren’t necessarily idiots. Heck, even the lunatic mullahs of Iran are arresting shrine-lickers! No Catholic “Authority” is going to doubt the wisdom of closing Lourdes in the face of the China Virus (heh!) pandemic.

  39. tinkling think says:

    jb, I was being a littley bit sarcastic. I really don’t expect a multi-milliard business to sully its one snake-oil product with evidence of massive failure. Not evidence that is obvious, globally reported and scientifically repeatable. That’s like the “yogurt” makers telling us the truth about their chemical sludges being non-foods, not being magical and being nutritionally useless, it just won’t happen.

    They may be deluded or hypocrites [I’ve never been entirely sure which and they are surely never going to admit either one] but they can see the difference between income in the trillions of currency-units over millennia and empty, broken-down churches.

    Even bloated, bald, badly-tanned Presidents can understand that no money is less nice than lots of money and sometimes act to preserve their sources of the latter.

    Rich may mean corrupt, venal, evil, greedy, selfish, uncaring, sociopathic and inhuman but it does not necessarily mean completely stupid.

    Not always.

    Still, it would have been fun had they tried it on. 🙂

  40. jb says:

    In my experience — and I have clergy members in my extended family — most people who claim to have strong beliefs, religious or otherwise, actually believe what they say they believe. I think that goes for people at the top almost as much as for those at the bottom.


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