We find ourselves in a truly challenging moment as this coronavirus pandemic becomes a long and difficult daily reality. Not only are our individual lives feeling severely compromised but the massive structural shifts are beyond despairing -- the shocking death toll, the triumph of surveillance structures, the displacements, the police brutality, curfews, imminent starvation, mass unemployment...the list is long. We know that many of you have survived war, reported on war or lived through intensive periods of violence, scarcity and uncertainty.
Whether you’re invested in the stock market or not, you’ve likely noticed that it’s been on a roller coaster lately. The White House and most of the D.C. Beltway crowd tend to equate the performance of the stock market with that of the broader economy. To President Trump’s extreme chagrin, $3.18 trillion in stock market value vaporized during the last week of February. Stock markets around the world also fell dramatically.
In early March, an estimated 7,500 American combat troops will travel to Norway to join thousands of soldiers from other NATO countries in a massive mock battle with imagined invading forces from Russia. In this futuristic simulated engagement -- it goes by the name of Exercise Cold Response 2020 -- allied forces will “conduct multinational joint exercises with a high-intensity combat scenario in demanding winter conditions,” or so claims the Norwegian military anyway.