• “EXCESSIVE ANXIETY IS COUNTERPRODUCTIVE, whether caused by real or imaginary circumstances; Coronavirus is real. But the vast majority of people experience mostly manageable levels of anxiety, even during a crisis… which may be a positive force, driving progress by enhancing certain behaviors that increase productivity.” Psychological research has shown that anxiety can: (1) increase performance by self-awareness of others’ expectations & evaluations; (2) enable self-criticism, self-improvement and humility, both at individual & cultural levels, to control tendency for overconfidence; and (3) motivate more strategic, future-focused, less selfish decisions… The point of having an unpleasant experience is not just to worry, avoid or ignore problems, but to turn the experience into a productive action plan… It takes courage to face anxieties in this manner, but that challenge is what leads to success.” [FAST COMPANY – 4/3/20]
  • FACIAL RECOGNITION TECHNOLOGY IS NOW AUTHORIZED FOR DEPLOYMENT by Washington State agencies starting next January, first in the nation. Some restrictions apply to ostensibly help protect citizens’ Privacy Rights, including public notice/meetings/reports and obtaining a warrant or permission from a judge. The bill was lobbied heavily by Microsoft, (one of the state’s largest employers who developed the technology and provides applications through its Azure Cloud platform), along with Sheriffs & Police Chiefs, but ACLU has, no surprise, already called for a ban on the technology. California has banned facial recognition in body cameras that police wear, and several other states have pending bills to allow or regulate this technology, but it’s definitely here. [BANK INFO SECURITY – 4/2/20]
  • 10% OF THE OPIODS DISPENSED IN AMERICA ARE FROM DENTISTS. Researchers analyzed over a half-million dental visits over several years to determine that nearly 30% of prescribed medications were “more powerful than medically necessary, exceeding recommended morphine milligrams, and over 50% of prescriptions exceeded the 3-day supply recommended by CDC for management of acute dental pain management.”   [AMER JRNL OF PREVENTIVE MEDICINE – 2/3/20]
  • POLITICS IS CLEARLY PLAYING A ROLE IN BEHAVIOR RESPONSE TO COVID-19. Since ‘stay-at-home’ policies have been implemented, the average national reduction of travel has been 30%, measured by location data from mobile phones which “track and analyze people’s movements (on behalf of restaurants & property companies), based on distance travelled.” In all ‘blue’ states (where people voted majority Democratic in 2016), travel has been cut by over 44%; whereas 22 of the 25 ‘red’ states cutback travel only 29%, and that pattern is repeated at the county level. Also, a recent Pew Research poll found that nearly six in ten Democrats think the virus is “a major threat to the nation” versus only a third of Republicans. It’s almost certain that people are primarily reflecting the Media they watch and listen to.  [ECONOMIST – 4/4/20]
  • BUT THE CORONA-CRISIS HAS BEEN GOOD FOR ONE ANCIENT BUSINESS: DRIVE-IN MOVIES. Resurrecting “across much of the country, operators of the throwback outdoor cinemas” are reporting double their ticket sales, with popcorn & snacks being ordered by phone and delivered directly to customer vehicles to protect social distancing, in jurisdictions where ‘shelter-in-place’ orders don’t apply. [THE WEEK – 4/10/20] 
  • THOUGHTS FOR THE WEEK: The Chinese bat which transmitted COVID-19 virus to humans is one of 1,100 bat species, 45 of which reside in America, the most common called ‘big brown bat.’ Only three species are ‘vampire’ bats.  

      Dear California:  classic, but pathetichttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1_JOscPpaBM&feature=youtu.be