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Mike Rowe brings a dose of common sense to coronavirus panic

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Mike Rowe has won legions of fans because he is the ultimate pragmatic man. He came to fame showing us the “dirty jobs” that keep America functioning. His current crusade is to deflect some energy, money, and prestige from academic degrees and channel it into trade certifications. He makes the case that we have a deficit of people capable of keeping the country running at a mechanical level and that more English majors will not solve the problem.

In a long and fascinating Facebook post, Rowe turns his pragmatic outlook to the coronavirus. He is not a skeptic and has the humility to recognize that he doesn’t fully understand the whole situation. Still, he understands how systems work, and he's worried that the panic that's breaking the American system is worse than the coronavirus itself.

Before getting to Rowe’s wisdom, here are a few things to think about. First, Rowe is not alone in having an incomplete understanding of the situation. Indeed, it would be hard to find anyone who fully understands what's going on. There’s too much data for any one person to absorb. Moreover, just as “to a hammer, everything is a nail,” the experts to whom we turn tend to view things through the narrow filter of their expertise. This means that they, too, cannot fully understand the situation.:snip:

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Mike Rowe: Coronavirus is an unprecedented chance for capitalism to 'step up'

TV host and author Mike Rowe said on “Fox & Friends” on Monday that the coronavirus outbreak “is a chance, unlike anything I've ever seen, for corporate America to step up and do what the government simply can't do.”

Rowe made the comments after several companies, including General Motors and two partners, have combined their efforts to build more ventilation systems for hospitals during the novel coronavirus pandemic, the auto company announced Friday.

GM, Ventec Life Systems and StopTheSpread.org, a coordinated private-sector response to COVID-19, are collaborating so that Ventec can increase its production of respiratory care products as hospitals across the U.S. face a potential ventilator shortage.:snip:

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Mike Rowe: Big business response to the coronavirus will show 'what capitalism is really all about'

Television star and businessman Mike Rowe predicted a nationwide outbreak of the coronavirus will help make the case for capitalism. 

 

“We’re going to see what capitalism is really all about,” Rowe said Monday on Fox & Friends. “When we have these big conversations about the direction the country is headed and what direction the country ought to be headed ... this is a chance, unlike anything I’ve ever seen, for corporate America to step up and do what the government simply can’t do." 

The outbreak of the pandemic has led to a slowed economy with hundreds of thousands missing work. Restaurants, bars, and other nonessential businesses have been shuttered in states across the country. 

President Trump has insisted the virtual shutdown of small businesses is only temporary and that the U.S. economy will "pop" back once the virus has passed. 

Meanwhile, U.S. health officials have scrambled to get necessary medical supplies to healthcare workers on the front lines of the crisis. 

Companies such as Facebook and Apple have pledged to donate goods or help the supply chain for the manufacturing of surgical masks or ventilators.:snip:

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