Category: COVID-19

Improvising & Adapting to Overcome the Meat Crisis in the Heartland

Washington (GGM) Analysis | April 30, 2020
NWHillReport-Pic by Noreen Wise

It should be ingrained in our minds right now, that we all need to make the sacrifices necessary to to save lives and responsibly open up the economy in measured steps. Hearing the traumatic horror stories from the frontlines in the meat packing plants across the nation’s heartland, as well as the medical facilities located near the meat packing plants, is heart wrenching.

Doctors in Iowa were choking back tears as they described how painful it is to have so many covid cases. And one doctor’s account, shared on The Rachel Maddow show last night, in which she bared her greatest fear, that of one or more of her nurses becoming infected with covid and dying, is a wakeup call to consumers.

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Six days ago, CBS news reported that 13 meat packing workers had already died of covid. Thousands are infected and have created covid hotspots in rural areas without the ability or facilities to treat and care for such a large volume of critically ill. President Trump responded to the growing crisis by demanding that meat processing plants stay open, invoking the the Defense Production Act to ensure that the plants would follow his directive.

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Daily conversation focused on how we can turn a negative into a positive and land on the bright side. A daily emotional vitamin that will boost your spirit. PodcastHost, Noreen Wise.

But the emotional toll of the loss of life of family,  friends and colleagues, as well as severe long term medical conditions for many who do survive, is not something any American should want to inflict on fellow Americans. Such lack of empathy and compassion is inhumane. Fifty meat packing workers walked off the job in Crete, Nebraska this week when Smithfield refused to provide safer work conditions.

Why did Smithfield refuse to adapt and adopt the CDC guidelines?

The refusal of meat packing plants to improvise and adapt in an effort to overcome the crisis is mind numbing. They received a huge tax decrease more than two years ago. Thousands of other businesses have improvised during covid to ensure employee and consumer safety.

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The moral depravity found in this type of decision making is more disturbing than covid itself. Those plants who refuse to follow CDC guidelines are making a bold statement through their inaction that they do not value human life. There’s no middle ground here. Continuing to purchase meat, when we know it will harm fellow Americans and the medical community who are making such extreme sacrifices for us, should challenge our moral consciousness.

Just say, “NO” to meat until covid is over, although smaller facilities that adopt CDC guidelines should be safe.🌱

© Copyright 2018 – 2020. ALL Rights Reserved.
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Those Amazon Boxes are Vital for Supply Chain | Recycle

Washington (GGM) Analysis | April 29, 2020
NWHillReport-Pic by Noreen Wise

Back in 2017, according to Quora, Amazon was clocking a staggering shipping rate of 1,600,000 boxes per day. Today, in March and April 2020, it seems clear that Amazon’s shipping rate has substantially increased and may even exceed 2 million boxes per day. The actual shipping numbers aren’t currently available to the public.

Cardboard is one of the easiest materials to recycle, and recycled cardboard boxes are an essential component in the manufacturing of a number of American consumer staples. Just make sure to peel off all plastic labels and codes stamped on the box before recycling. The tape on most boxes is now paper tape. But if you see plastic tape, peel that off as well.

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Daily conversation focused on how we can turn a negative into a positive and land on the bright side. A daily emotional vitamin that will boost your spirit. PodcastHost, Noreen Wise.

The following products are produced using recycled cardboard:

  • new cardboard boxes
  • cereal boxes
  • paper towels
  • printer paper
  • paper bags
  • tissue

Thus, recycling cardboard boxes, especially when millions are readily available, is absolutely imperative. We can’t have manufacturers reverting to chopping down trees to feed their supply chain. TheTrillion Trees Campaign was launched in Davos 2020, where nearly two hundred countries agreed to plant billions of trees in the upcoming months and years so that together we can achieve the goal of a trillion new trees on the planet.

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Search online today to find out your community’s cardboard recycling policies during covid19 and add this to your list of “must do’s” during our global crisis. We are witnessing first hand how catastrophic a crisis can become if we don’t plan ahead and take precautions. The same is true for the climate crisis. These small steps today, will save thousands of lives tomorrow.♻️

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The Golden Rule & Covid-19 | Recycling and Waste Management

Washington (GGM) Analysis | April 27, 2020
NWHillReport-Pic by Noreen Wise

“Do unto others as you want them to do to you.” ~ The Golden Rule

It’s exciting to see that recycling has been deemed an essential service during covid-19, but keeping these dedicated waste management employees safe during the global pandemic is equally as important.

With everyone stuck at home, there’s now more home garbage than ever before. Further, the vast majority of us are ordering the bulk of our purchases online, and having it delivered, so there’s likely a mountain of recyclable cardboard boxes associated with each household. And how about glass bottles from our favorite alcoholic beverages? Many manufacturers rely on these particular recyclables to produces their products. Cardboard and glass are two of the more essential components of the supply chain for recyclable manufacturing.

So, how is recycling being handled during covid-19? There seems to be conflicting accounts depending on the state and local municipality.

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Daily conversation focused on how we can turn a negative into a positive and land on the bright side. A daily emotional vitamin that will boost your spirit. PodcastHost, Noreen Wise.

Here’s what we know according to The Recycling Partnership:

  • even though deemed essential, many communities are suspending curbside recycling pickup so please check with your town’s waste management website
  • if your locality has drop off recycling, please try and take advantage of this, while maintaining the safe protocols of a facial covering and gloves, manufacturers are desperate for these materials
  • cities will have much tighter budgets in the new fiscal year beginning July 1, 2020, many towns are discussing cutting back on curbside recycling pickup, so we have to make plans each week to drop off recyclables at drop off centers
  • states and municipalities are still trying to work out the best way to handle plastic PPE and recycling, hard plastic can be recycled, but it can be dangerous, (more information below)
  • Wipe garbage bin handles down before rolling to curb, and wear gloves when pushing the bin to curb

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Additionally, there are specific rules regarding how to handle waste and recycling if anyone in the household has tested positive for covid-19.

  • No garbage brought to the curb during the 14 day quarantine period
  • add an additional 72 hours to the 14 days for recycling

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Our individual actions are life and death for many in our communities. It’s very important that we follow the guidelines to keep everyone safe. The golden rule has never meant more than it does right now. Do unto others as you want them to do unto you. ♻️

© Copyright 2018 – 2020. ALL Rights Reserved.
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Glass Solar Bricks Coming Soon

Washington (GGM) Analysis | April 7, 2020
NWHillReport-Pic by Noreen Wise

There’s been some exciting climate news released during the tragic covid19 crisis, glass solar bricks will soon be here. According to Reuters, the new glass bricks will not only be able to produce sustainable energy, they will also serve as thermal insulation and allow sunlight in. Very advanced compared to the current solar panels that line roofs, farmers fields and desert land.

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Glass solar bricks won’t be able to replace solar panels, but new buildings will be constructed using futuristic bricks that will power the entire building. Now that’s brilliant, and a lot to cheer about when things seem so bleak right now. According to Bloomberg Green, solar installations have taken a nose dive while everyone is stuck at home trying to cope with their lives being turned upside down.

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The disruption may very well be a blessing for many many families and businesses, however. Solar power is an investment. We always want the most advanced technology when we put down our money. But, with solar power progressing in leaps and bounds, the advancements are happening much quicker than the 5-20 year solar loan payment schedules. I’m sure we’ve all had at least dreadful phone experience, where a few months after we upgrade, Apple releases it’s next iPhone iteration, letting all the air out of our tires as we’re forced to wait two years with our new old phones.

There’s nothing wrong with the current solar panels. They’re very effective, enabling families to save money, and in many cases make a significant amount  of money, all while lowering carbon emissions. But just as we saw with computers, smart phones, cameras… all technology really, the newer versions are always lighter, stronger, faster.

Best not to stress about dismal 2020 solar installations in the short term, we’ll definitely make up for it in the long term.🌱

© Copyright 2018 – 2020. ALL Rights Reserved.
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Finding Our New Groove | Weaving in Green While We’re at It

Washington (GGM) Analysis | April 5, 2020
NWHillReport-Pic by Noreen Wise

Every day is another step in this new, weird world we’re adapting to. And because we were blindsided, and thus had no preparation, we’re missing nearly every safety necessity, which forces us to be incredibly resourceful, and improvise, if we want to overcome these circumstances and stay alive. Sadly, despite all our efforts, many will still perish.

Improvise. Adapt. Overcome. …is a military motto. Makes sense. I can totally picture improvise-adapt-overcome being the daily practice when the military is out in the field. And the military’s story of reality on the front lines, is now our reality as we stand on the front lines. With so much adapting and improvising taking place 24/7, it’s an excellent opportunity for us to absorb the big picture and make all the changes we’ve been promising ourselves for days, months, and even… years.

Climate reality.

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I remember the incredible opportunity I had after the townhouse I lived in was flattened by a tornado. The first few weeks were traumatic, of course. The structure was deemed a total loss. My then-husband and I had to live in temporary quarters, while it was rebuilt. I was so grateful to have lived through the frightening experience (I survived by running into a closet when I heard the train coming, and when I opened the door after the huge KABOOOOM, everything was gone). I thus wasn’t going to complain about any of the inconveniences or hardships that followed.

I think what kept me so positive, was that I could suddenly make all the changes I’d been dreaming of. Be careful for what you wish  for. Be careful for what you wish for. Be careful for what you wish for. Seriously, I must have said that a million times. When life is suddenly helter skelter, I could finally fully grasp what Newtown’s first law of motion was all about: an object at rest stays at rest, or an object in motion stays in motion at the same velocity, unless acted upon by an external force.

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Carpe diem. Seize the day. I became the whirlwind of change, quickly implementing the home designs I’d been planning for years. I upgraded the floors in several rooms with upscale tile, and top of the line carpeting in others. A few months after moving back in, the upgrades enabled us to sell the townhouse in record time during a down market at asking price and relocate across the country to California. I also began a writing course at some point during all this craziness, which set me on a new path to become the writer I had dreamed of becoming ever since I was a child. Those eight months were an endless blur of activity, the equivalent of the shifting of a kaleidoscope where every single spec shifts.

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I feel the exact same right now. There’s safety with all of us suffering the same grim fate together. It reminds me of my father’s chain saw accident when he slipped and fell and accidentally sawed his leg down to the bone (it was amputated at the hospital). The doctor explained that what saved my father’s life was slicing all the way through the largest vein in his leg, causing it to clamp shut on its own. Apparently, if he had nicked it, he would have bled out.

So, too with us. We’re all in this together. Let’s make the most of this incredible opportunity and commit to implement the many changes we’ve been promising to make for climate… as well as removing corrupt, lawless politicians who’ve degraded our American principles and undermined our Constitution, which we all now hold so dear.🌱

 

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Trump’s Weird Response to COVID-19 Should Make Us Question the Bizarre Timing of Soleimani’s Death

Washington (GGM) Analysis | March 31, 2020
NWHillReport-Pic by Noreen Wise

There are no coincidences. Right? So then what are we supposed to make of this very bizarre coincidence?

  • Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was notified on December 30, 2019 of the alarming discovery in Wuhan, China regarding an “unexplained pneumonia” spreading across the city.

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  • The information was shared across social media as Americans were eagerly looking forward to a special New Years Eve, the beginning of a new decade.HillReport2-31-2020b.png
  • Additionally, the Articles of Impeachment had been passed in the House prior to the holiday recess, but Pelosi had the good sense not to send the articles to McConnell in the Senate and this was causing a ruckus. One of the contentious issues was the need to have witnesses at the Senate impeachment trial, specifically John Bolton.
  • Americans were blinded by a distressing curve ball that blew up the news cycle on January 3, 2020 when word came that Trump had approved the killing of a top Iranian military general, the number two man in the Iranian government,  General Qasem Soleimai. This was so controversial, it was debated through every news outlet for the next two weeks, with the Pentagon and the FBI warning Americans to beware of retaliation in the United States.HillReport3-31-2020.png
  • Mike Pompeo, who as mentioned had already been informed about the coronavirus, and likely told Trump, was apparently the one behind the killing of Soleimani, urging Trump to go for it. It seems very plausible the two discussed both matters at the same time.
  • Meanwhile, also on January 3, 2020, in a dark corner of the White House, official word came announcing that something alarming was happening in Wuhan, China. But who would pay attention to this threat on the other side of the globe while a volcanic international crisis was erupting on our doorstep?
  • News of covid-19 was quickly buried under a stack of more pressing and immediate emergencies, with Iran immediately striking back in Iraq with repeated attacks following what some began calling the “assassination” of Soleimani. At one point during this maelstrom, Iran accidentally shot down a Ukrainian commercial flight taking off from an airport in Tehran filled with Iranian and Canadian citizens.
  • The heated conflict between Pelosi and McConnell and Trump’s impeachment trial continued, and remained the center focus of the news cycle despite the international chaos over Soleimani’s death.
  • As if to top off the month of horror and alarm, Sunday afternoon January 26, 2020 our lives were interrupted by yet another heartbreaking tragedy, the shocking death of Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna, and everyone onboard their helicopter that plummeted from the sky, crashing into a canyon north of LA, and blowing up on impact.

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  • In light of these agonizing twists and turns that just so happen to line up exactly with word of the coronavirus arriving in DC, I have a few simple questions: Why did Pompeo push to have Soleimani removed in such a dramatic and controversial take down when he was fully aware it would divert attention away from the coronavirus early warnings? No American leader would do this unless it was their intention to do so. Why was this their intention?

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Positivity | How Do We Find the Bright Side?

Washington (GGM) Analysis | March 27, 2020
NWHillReport-Pic by Noreen Wise

With so much concern and worry and upheaval, layered on top of a traumatic health crisis that spans the globe, which impacts every single life on earth in some way, it’s hard not to feel completely overwhelmed and helpless. Many of our livelihoods have been uprooted and some smashed to the ground. We’re forced to abruptly move in a new direction and quickly master the challenges. That’s very easy to say, but much harder to do. In fact, how do we actually accomplish this?

One step at a time. The following are a few small takeaways that I learned from twenty-five years of surviving traumatic events. I often wonder if I hold the world record for how many life-altering extreme crises a human can overcome. I keep following this same procedure though, so I’m hopeful it will be beneficial to others.

  • Follow advice. When all the key experts say the same thing, and data highlights the validity, as well as our common sense, we simply must do it. In this case, stay home. With the concept being so easy to grasp, why are so many not following through? Probably because it’s difficult. Somewhere in our subliminal conscious we might feel frustrated that this is being forced upon us and we want to rebel.
  •  Changing our perspective. I admit, I’m a very healthy person with a strong immune system and feel that I’ll likely not catch covid-19, although I might somehow become an asymptomatic carrier. I’ve convinced myself that if I stay away from everyone, I can still go out. I run on nearby trails and am very careful to leave a 6 foot gap between anyone I pass. However, while running today, a tiny gnat flew into my mouth. I quickly conjured up a mental image of the little critter flying along the trail, touching every person it passed and now it was in my throat. I was horrified. From now on, I’ll wear an improvised face mask when I run.
  •  Using the right lens. But just because I feel relatively protected running on a trail, I have to check myself about other possible outings (Friday night takeout pizza for example). My rule of thumb is to ask myself, would I go for pizza if this crisis was Chernobyl? No, I definitely wouldn’t. So I tell myself that that’s what this is. Extreme circumstances. Sacrifice pizza. Easy.
  • Nature. Surrounding myself with nature, especially lots of trees, flowers, and green meadows, elevates my spirit every time, without fail. Beautiful trails are usually free.HillReport3-27-2020a
  • Finding the silver lining. I’m sure many of us the first week had a long list of frustrations about why this is so maddening. I know I did, especially after 25 years of life-altering, unfair traumas. Not again, was all I could think. But since my normal routine is to search for the positive when I begin to feel negative, I happily racked my brain:
    • There won’t be any school massacres this spring. This is a big deal. Back in January, I became very worried about a possible spring school massacre. White Nationalists had been gathering and seemingly plotting attacks, and with the 2020 election season beginning, I was fearful there would be another horrific slaughter. But now, no chance. This is a huge blessing.
    • Students who are constantly bullied at school, will have a much needed break from all the cruelty.
    • Be careful for what you wish for. I’ve been stressing about finishing several screenplays for over nine months, but haven’t had time to finish, and may have said a few too many prayers about this. Now I have plenty of time to finish.
    • It seems highly probable, that many young people between the ages of 16 – 24, will find completely new career paths to pursue. By late summer 2020, they’ll be thanking their lucky stars for this unexpected curveball that altered their destiny.
  • Starting the morning on the right foot. Eating right is essential for positivity. I start every morning with 1/4 cup of organic, raw sunflower seed kernels. It’s the ultimate happiness boost. Once done, it’s ten times easier to find the bright side.
  • Getting a good night’s sleep. Deep sleep is very important. Eye shields that block all light, is the easiest way to get deep sleep, 6-8 hours being the ideal. I typically get 6.5 – 7 hours.
  • Exercise. A daily workout routine clears the mind, channels most frustrations and fills us with mood boosting endorphins.HillReport3-27-2020b

Going through this list every single day and checking off each when completed, creates a daily routine that becomes habit. Focusing on these small details, changes our perspective. I keep adding more positives, since everyday something new seems to pop up unexpectedly. And because I’m not able to think of the negatives, when I’m focused on the positives (our brains can only think of one thought at a time), the negatives soon become very distant. I wake up one morning and realize I’m in a whole new world and it’s a wonderful and exciting place to be.

But during a deadly pandemic, following the rules really is essential. Staying home is the bright side. Being attached to a ventilator in a packed, makeshift hospital in convention center is definitely a negative that’s nearly impossible to overcome.🌱

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