Wall Street Journal 
Wall Street Journal Monday April 27, 2020 [CCLXXV, US ed.]

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Business & Finance illions of credit-card holders can’t pay their debt amid coronavirus-induced financial distress and lenders are bracing for the impact. A1


 Boeing dropped plans to take control of Embraer’s jetliner business, saving cash but adding uncertainty to its own product strategy. B3  At least 13 of the public companies that got coronavirus hardship loans said they would return the money. B5

World-Wide  Some U.S. states took tentative steps toward reopening from coronavirus lockdowns, as officials debated how quickly to remove restrictions amid uncertainty about when the worst of the pandemic would subside. A1




Robert Rodriguez and Migdalia Wharton, a married couple in Orlando, Fla., have been out of work for more than a month and can’t afford to pay their credit-card bills. When they called Capital One Financial Corp. to explain, the bank told them they could skip their April payments. But they doubt they will have money in May. Ms. Wharton, a school-bus driver, was told she wouldn’t get paid until school reopens. Mr. Rodriguez, a can-

InvestorBacked Hospital Demanded A Bailout


 Trump told Azar he wants to keep him as Health and Human Services chief, after learning of discussions under way in the White House about replacing the secretary. A4

BIG STEP: In Barcelona, two sisters played outdoors Sunday, as children under age 14 were allowed to leave their homes for the first time since a state of emergency was declared on March 14. They are still restricted to one hour outdoors a day.

 The U.K.’s Johnson was set to return to work after recovering from a coronavirus infection to face critical decisions over how and when to reopen the British economy. A8  China offered a new route for medical-goods producers to obtain export approval, a move that could help ease recent shipment delays. A7  Trump’s new arms-control envoy faces major hurdles to obtaining a nuclear-armscontrol agreement among the U.S., China and Russia. A3  North Korea’s silence about Kim’s health is amplifying speculation about the leader’s condition as rumors swirl over his absence. A9  A mountain mine in California is poised to get a boost from the Pentagon, which sees the rare-earth metals it extracts there as vital for national defense. A3 CONTENTS Business & FinanceB2,5,6 Business News....... B3 Crossword.............. A14 Heard on Street... B10 Life & Arts...... A11-13 Markets...................... B9

Opinion.............. A15-17 Outlook....................... A2 Sports....................... A14 Technology................ B4 U.S. News............. A2-3 Weather................... A14 World News............ A9


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BY BRIAN SPEGELE AND LAURA COOPER Pennsylvania’s governor was urgently preparing for a surge in Covid-19 cases last month when a private-equityowned hospital said it would shut its doors unless the state secured a $40 million bailout. Steward Health Care System LLC said it needed the money from the state in three days or “Easton Hospital will no longer be able to serve the community’s health-care needs and will be forced to close,” read a letter to the governor from Steward, which is owned by $43 billion New York investment firm Cerberus Capital Management LP. Gearing up for an expected surge in patients, Pennsylvania didn’t want to lose any hospital beds, local and state officials said. “That’s how they kept the state hostage,” said Sal Panto, Easton’s mayor and a member of the hospital’s board of trustees. Private-equity investors including Cerberus poured around $200 billion into U.S. health-care buyouts in the past decade. But a playbook that often includes loading portfolio companies with debt, selling assets to lock in profits Please turn to page A6

cer survivor, is worried for his health and has stopped driving for Uber. “We don’t know what we’re going to do,” Mr. Rodriguez said. Millions of people in the U.S. are skipping their credit-card payments as the coronavirus pandemic puts them out of work. Banks and other lenders that for years relied on heavy consumer spending to create big profits are preparing to struggle alongside their customers. As the economy spirals, credit-card payments are one

of the first places where the effects will show up. They are often the first loans people stop paying when money is tight. They are usually unsecured, which means lenders have little recourse if a borrower stops paying. Many large card issuers, including Capital One, Discover Financial Services and Synchrony Financial, are letting borrowers pause their creditcard payments for a month or longer. Some are lowering or waiving late fees and interest charges, or even forgiving porPlease turn to page A2

The Outlook: GDP likely to go from bad to worse, A2

Farmers dump crops as supply chain is disrupted, A6 Lockdown tests U.K.’s returning leader, A8

Your video therapist will see you now, A11

Salons, retailers and other businesses in several U.S. states started to reopen over the weekend, as governors began easing restrictions in some sectors in an effort to begin to repair the battered economy. Around the world, too, officials began moves to ease restrictions. Hard-hit Italy announced a timetable for reopening beginning in May, while Spain allowed children to leave their homes after six weeks under one of the strictest lockdowns in the world. U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson is set to return to work on Monday after recovering from symptoms that hospitalized him for a week, the government said. In the U.S., the rate of growth in infections in some parts of the country has appeared to slow, some health Please turn to page A4

Coronavirus Means the Era Of Big Government Is Back

Stock Rebound Stirs Doubts

Conflicting signals in the global economy have some investors worried about recent gains. B1 S&P 500 peak-to-trough decline around notable recessions March 1933 June 2009 June 1938 March 1975 Oct. 1945 Nov. 2001 Nov. 1970 April 2020 Nov. 1982 April 1958 Oct. 1949 –100%


By Jennifer Calfas, Talal Ansari and Natasha Khan

National shocks through history have had lasting expansive effects BY GERALD F. SEIB AND JOHN MCCORMICK


History shows that big national shocks have a way of changing the role of government in lasting ways—and any shock as big as the coronavirus pandemic inevitably will alter political life and philosophies in America. The crisis has been not just a public-health emergency requiring a sweeping response, but also the cause of the most searing economic pain since the Great Depression, summoning forth a multi-trillion-dollar government intervention into the economy. Much of today’s new government activism will recede over time along with the virus. Yet conversations with a broad cross-section of political figures suggest there is little reason


Note: Sorted by end date of each recession except for current period Sources: Dow Jones Market Data; FactSet

Live Zoo Cams Offer Solace For Humans on Lockdown i


to expect a return to what had been the status quo on federal spending, or the prevailing attitude toward the proper role of government. “The era of Ronald Reagan, that said basically the government is the enemy, is over,” said Rahm Emanuel, a moderate Democrat who served as mayor of Chicago, a member of Congress and President Obama’s first White House chief of staff. An echo came from the other side of the political spectrum. “The era of Robert Taft, limited-government conservatism?” said Steve Bannon, President Trump’s onetime political guru, referring to the Ohio senator who fought the expansion of government programs and federal borrowing. “It’s not relevant. It’s Please turn to page A10



In role reversal, it’s the people who find themselves caged up; one special penguin BY MIKE CHERNEY AND DANIELA HERNANDEZ Devin Madson, a 33-yearold fantasy author, doesn’t like feeling caged in her home in the Australian countryside because of the coronavirus lockdown. But she feels better after seeing giraffes wander around a zoo pen. “I didn’t realize how much stress I had been carrying

around until I was watching giraffes,” said Ms. Madson, who devoted one of her computer screens to a live video of the animals at Melbourne Zoo. “I thought, ‘Look at those beautiful, calm, graceful animals just walking around, just happily living their normal life.’ It was like a beautiful piece of normal.” Humans are finding comPlease turn to page A10


 Carnival raised billions in the bond market after the Fed stepped in, at rates far lower than it had earlier discussed with hedge funds, though at a potential future cost. B1

More U.S. states took limited steps toward reopening from lockdowns spurred by the new coronavirus, as federal and state officials debated how quickly to remove restrictions amid uncertainty about the path of the pandemic.


 Business leaders say they expect supply-chain problems to remain even as countries start to reopen their economies. B1, B3

co Fo m rp m er er s ci on al a l us , e on

 J.C. Penney, battered by missteps and the rise of ecommerce, is on the verge of being done in by the coronavirus pandemic. B1


 The economy should bounce back in July, August and September as businesses closed by the coronavirus resume operations, Mnuchin said. A4

Some businesses open as a top official says social distancing could go through summer JOSEP LAGO/AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE/GETTY IMAGES

 A Cerberus-controlled Pennsylvania community hospital called for $40 million as the state prepared to treat Covid-19 patients. A1

YEN 107.48

States Begin to Restart Battered Economy

A Carefree Dash as Spain Eases Up on Its Restrictions

What’s News

EURO $1.0823

SPORTS Baseball is back in Taiwan, with cardboard cutouts in the stands A14

BUSINESS The pandemic has sped up J.C. Penney’s march toward bankruptcy. B1

For personal, non-commercial use only. Do not edit, alter or reproduce. For commercial reproduction or distribution, contact Dow Jones Reprints & Licensing at (800) 843-0008 or www.djreprints.com.

A2 | Monday, April 27, 2020



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THE OUTLOOK | By Harriet Torry


he first-quarter figures will be foreboding. U.S. workplaces, schools and nonessential businesses only started shutting down in large numbers in the final weeks of the quarter to stem the spread of the coronavirus. But the scale of the pullback is likely to result in a decline for the whole quarter, economists said. “This is like a really bad hurricane hitting the entire economy,” said Richard Moody, chief economist at

Change in real U.S. GDP 5% 0 –5 Projected

–10 –15 –20 –25


–30 2007



Note: Seasonally adjusted at annual rates, 1Q and 2Q 2020 are IHS Markit estimates Sources: Commerce Department (actual); IHS Markit (projected)

Regions Financial Corp. Unemployment surged to a near three-year high of 4.4% in March from a 50year low of 3.5% in February as demand sputtered and businesses were closed. By the end of March, over 10 million workers had filed claims for unemployment benefits, a number that grew to more than 26 million in the week ended April 18. The shock waves point to a likely sharp drop in consumer spending, the lifeblood of the U.S. economy, as malls, movie theaters and sports arenas shut down in the final weeks of the first quarter, and for the most

part remained dark through April. The Commerce Department reported that retail sales, which make up about 25% of household spending, dropped 8.7% in March compared with February, when sales were down just 0.4% from the prior month. Stockpiling at grocery stores and online wasn’t enough to compensate for a collapse in spending at bars and restaurants and falling sales of new vehicles and gasoline. The economy took other blows that will be reflected in the GDP report. U.S. industrial production—a measure of factory, utility and mining output, which includes oil and natural-gas production—fell a seasonally adjusted 5.4% in March, its biggest monthly drop since 1946, the Federal Reserve reported. Falling industrial production combined with declines in shipping, travel and commuting world-wide to send oil prices plunging. This suggests the downturn in energy-related business investment, such as in equipment and structures, likely worsened in the first quarter as well. April got off to a grim start, with business activity in the U.S., Europe and

Japan falling as governments tightened restrictions, according to surveys of purchasing managers.


he experience of China offers some clues on the pandemic’s initial economic impact. Consumer spending and industrial production took a hit in the country, where the coronavirus first emerged in late 2019 and prompted quarantine measures starting in late January. The world’s second-largest economy shrank in the first quarter for the first time since Beijing began reporting quarterly GDP in 1992. The International Monetary Fund said this month that the global economy has almost certainly entered a recession, with a severity unmatched by anything aside from the Great Depression. The IMF forecast total output to fall 3% in 2020. That compares with a contraction of 0.1% in 2009, the worst year of the previous recession, the IMF said. The U.S. report coming Wednesday “is just a hint at what’s coming in the second quarter,” said Ian Shepherdson, chief economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics.


steepest rate of decline since the recession of 2007-2009. The annualized rate, however, overstates the severity of any drop in output because it is compounded over a full year. Economists generally expect the contraction to deepen in the second quarter but not to keep worsening over a full year. The Wall Street Journal’s most recent monthly survey of economists found nearly 85% of respondents forecast the economy to start recovering in the second half of the year, assuming the health threat subsides, as businesses reopen and companies meet pent-up demand from consumers who put off purchases during the closures.

co Fo m rp m er er s ci on al a l us , e on

The U.S. government is likely to report the country just saw the biggest quarterly economic contraction since early 2009, and forecasters warn the figures will likely provide a preview of worse to come. The Commerce Department’s tally of first-quarter gross domestic product, to be released Wednesday, will cover a period mostly preceding the coronavirusdriven shutdowns of American economic activity that became widespread in midMarch and are set to continue in most of the country at least through April. “This is just the beginning,” said Beth Ann Bovino, S&P Global’s chief U.S. economist, who estimates that GDP dropped at a 7.5% annual rate in the first quarter. Economists surveyed by The Wall Street Journal expect the department to say GDP, the broadest measure of goods and services produced across the country, fell at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 3.5% in the first three months of the year. That would mark the first quarterly economic contraction in six years, and the


Despite Risks, Worshipers Gather in Tennessee


Another Person Dies In El Paso Massacre


A man shot in the Aug. 3, 2019, attack targeting Hispanics in an El Paso Walmart died after months in the hospital, raising the death toll from the attack to 23, according to a hospital official. “After a nearly nine-month fight, our hearts are heavy as we report Guillermo ‘Memo’ Garcia, our last remaining patient being treated from the El Paso shooting, has passed away,” said Del Sol Medical Center CEO David Shimp. Mr. Garcia and his wife, Jessica Coca Garcia, were fundraising for their daughter’s soccer team in the Walmart parking lot when the suspected gunman opened fire that Saturday morning. Mr. Garcia’s wife escaped the attack after being shot in the leg. —Associated Press LOUISIANA


HAVING FAITH: Lacreta Simmons and others came together on Sunday at Middle Valley Church of God in Hixson, Tenn.

payments will buy time for the economy to recover and consumers to get back on track. But for people who have no idea when they will be back at work, that likely won’t be enough. Many people were already overstretched even before the pandemic, tapping credit cards and other debt at record levels to keep up with soaring costs for college, health care, housing and other expenses. Marena Owens called Synchrony in March to ask about deferring payments on her T.J. Maxx, American Eagle Outfitters Inc. and J.C. Penney Co. cards. She accepted an offer to skip the April payments on two of the cards, and to erase the roughly $50 balance on her J.C. Penney card. Ms. Owens lost her job at an Ohio car dealership the same week. Unsure of when she might return to work, Ms. Owens called Synchrony again last week, and was told she could

defer her T.J. Maxx payment due in early May for another month. She is planning to ask for the same reprieve on her American Eagle card. “I probably won’t pay if they’re not willing to work with me,” she said. A Synchrony spokeswoman said the bank “is here to assist our customers…who are experiencing financial hardship as a result of this crisis.” Discover, Capital One, American Express Co., JPMorgan Chase & Co. and other card issuers have together socked away billions of extra dollars to prepare for big potential loan losses. “We clearly have already had significant deterioration,” said Roger Hochschild, Discover’s chief executive. “This was very quick and cataclysmic.” Some lenders are also tightening the credit available to new applicants or existing customers.

Delinquency rates, quarterly*

Credit-card balances, yearly†


$1.0 trillion


Credit-Card Users Feel The Crunch Continued from Page One tions of customers’ balances. Those suspensions will allow some borrowers to stay afloat, but only temporarily. Companies and analysts expect delinquencies and charge-offs to soar later this year. Banks and other lenders can only shoulder the unpaid loans for so long before they face consequences too. Shares of Discover and Synchrony have lost more than half their value so far this year. That is far worse than the broader market, which has declined about 12%, and sectors less exposed to unemployment worries, such as technology, health care and consumer staples. Discover and Synchrony said last week that they have allowed hundreds of thousands of borrowers to defer their payments, including many credit-card customers. Capital One, which has about 120 million credit-card accounts in the U.S., according to the Nilson Report, said it enrolled 1% of its active card accounts into deferral programs. The three banks are a good gauge of the financial health of a swath of U.S. consumers. Discover and Synchrony generally don’t market to affluent customers, and Capital One has a large number of customers with less-thanpristine credit scores. Banks hope that delaying

Credit-card loans

2 0.5

All loans


0 1Q 2016

0 1Q ’17

1Q ’18

1Q ’19



*Delinquent loans are 30 or more days past due. Data are seasonally adjusted. †Data are as of February of each year, seasonally adjusted; based on revolving consumer credit that mostly comprises cards. Source: Federal Reserve

Monday: The Bank of Japan holds a policy-board meeting where officials are likely to discuss further expanding purchases of corporate bonds and commercial paper to support the economy. Wednesday: U.S. gross domestic product is expected to show a contraction in the first quarter. The figures, however, will only capture a few weeks of the coronavirus-related downturn. The Federal Reserve concludes a policy meeting. Chairman Jerome Powell is likely to highlight the programs the bank has launched and reiterate a promise to do whatever possible to help bridge a severe downturn. Thursday: China will release its official manufacturing index for April. Economists expect factory activity to continue a postlockdown recovery, but at a slightly slower pace than in March. The European Union’s economy is expected to show a contraction in the first quarter, underscoring the cost of lockdowns. The European Central Bank holds a policy meeting. Millions more Americans are expected to have sought unemployment benefits. Jobless claims, which are laid-off workers’ applications for unemployment-insurance payments, surpassed a cumulative 26 million during the prior five weeks. Friday: The Institute for Supply Management’s manufacturing index for April is expected to show a sharp contraction.


GDP Likely to Go From Bad to Worse



Banks including Citigroup Inc., Discover and Synchrony are shutting down credit cards that haven’t been used in a while or lowering spending limits. The companies said they were taking these measures before the pandemic as a way to reduce risk. But those moves could also leave some borrowers without access to credit just when they need it most. Missed payments, though, aren’t the only problem for card issuers. Card spending in travel and other categories is plummeting, which means banks won’t get as much revenue from the swipe fees they collect when consumers pay with cards. And since people under stayat-home orders aren’t out shopping, many of them are spending less on the store credit cards they have. That is a problem for issuers that specialize in store cards, including Synchrony and Alliance Data Systems. “For the next two years or so until everything settles, [credit cards] will be much less profitable and more risky,” said Brian Riley, director of credit advisory services at Mercator Advisory Group. In Orlando, Mr. Rodriguez and Ms. Wharton used their Capital One credit cards to buy groceries, toilet paper and medicine for several weeks after they found themselves out of work. They recently were approved for food stamps. They told Capital One they might not be able to pay their bills in May, either. They said they were told to call back at the end of April if they are still in financial distress.

Police Officer Slain; Second Is Wounded

A shooting in Baton Rouge, La., left one police officer dead and his wounded colleague fighting for his life Sunday, authorities said. A suspect was taken into custody after an hourslong standoff in which shots were ex-

changed with a SWAT team. The suspect, Ronnie Kato, 36, was detained after a roughly four-hour standoff in which he barricaded himself inside a house, Police Chief Murphy Paul said. The officers had been seeking to arrest Mr. Kato as a murder suspect in a shooting, Chief Paul said. The slain officer was a 21-year law enforcement veteran and the wounded colleague had seven years of police work, Chief Paul said at a news conference. “Our officers—talk about being public servants and the responsibility that comes along with being a law enforcement officer,” Paul said. “This is a call no chief wants to get.” —Associated Press OHIO

Man Is Shot Dead At His Birthday Party Authorities in Cleveland are investigating the shooting death of a man at his own birthday party. Officers were called to a residence at about 2:30 a.m. Sunday and found a 25-year-old man shot in the chest, police said. He was pronounced dead at the scene. Investigators said a 22-yearold relative was handling a handgun “and reportedly shot the victim believing it was unloaded.” —Associated Press

CORRECTIONS  AMPLIFICATIONS Interior designer Melissa Warner Rothblum is based in Los Angeles. An April 18 Off Duty article about ways to redecorate using what you already have incorrectly said she is based in Seattle. In some editions Thursday, a map with a Coronavirus Pandemic article about plans to resume surgeries was mislabeled. The map showed when nonurgent medical procedures were suspended by state; from

the left, the labels should have read March 18-19, March 20-23, March 24-27 and April 1-6. The labels incorrectly read April 18-19, April 20-23, April 24-27 and March 1-6.

Notice to readers Wall Street Journal staff members are working remotely during the pandemic. For the foreseeable future, please send reader comments only by email or phone, using the contacts below, not via U.S. Mail.

Readers can alert The Wall Street Journal to any errors in news articles by emailing [email protected] or by calling 888-410-2667.

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Monday, April 27, 2020 | A3


A three-way deal for nuclear-arms control has been a goal for a year.


The Pentagon is funding a processing facility at this rare-earth mine in Mountain Pass, Calif. The minerals extracted are vital to defense.

China’s Leverage Spurs Some Action

Strategic & International Studies. The Defense Department put out two requests for information—an early step in the grant process—the following week, and Mr. Trump issued a series of executive orders later that summer authorizing use of the Defense Production Act to invest in rare-earth processing. Ms. Nakano called the first

wave of grants a step in the right direction. “The Chinese government sees value in pumping in money because they think that’s the frontier of economic competition, or economic competitiveness with Western countries,” she added. “If that’s the context in which this game is played, then it’s been about time for us to revisit.

pany MP Materials to buy the site out of bankruptcy. MP Materials had planned to start a larger processing business there this spring, but that is now delayed until 2021 because of the coronavirus pandemic and the retaliatory tariffs eating into company revenue, Mr. Litinsky said, although engineering work continues. The Pentagon grant provides funding for feasibility and engineering studies of the processing plant, and to develop ways to extract and refine more of the mine’s most valuable, but

toughest-to-separate minerals. The companies and the Pentagon haven't disclosed the awards’ value. Some of the Defense Department contract materials published online say grants through these programs usually offer between $5 million and $20 million. In materials for a related set of grants, the Pentagon says it is likely to award up to $40 million, but leaves it unclear whether that applies to only that program or its entire package of rare-earths projects. The grants represent the Trump administration’s first

step to put money behind an effort to break China’s control of the supply chain for these minerals, widely used in weapons systems, jet fighters, wind turbines and electric vehicles. Many regard them as potentially essential to the future of the military and a clean-tech economy, but there is very little capacity to process and build parts from these minerals outside China, according to industry analysts. The administration may need Congress, too, because creating a lasting, rare-earths processing business effectively

from scratch is likely to take years and a lot more money, analysts said. Processing facilities alone typically cost hundreds of millions of dollars each, and new U.S. plants will face stiff competition from state-backed Chinese companies, analysts said. “Symbolically I think it’s huge,” Ryan Castilloux, who leads the rare-earths research firm Adamas Intelligence. “But at this point it’s yet to be seen that it will turn into anything tangible.” He called the new grants the government putting its “toes in the water.”



Chinese leaders haven't been shy about highlighting rare earths as a major advantage. During last year’s trade war with the U.S., Chinese President Xi Jinping and his top trade negotiator toured a region of

China that calls itself a rareearths kingdom. The trip was widely interpreted as a message to the U.S. that his government has leverage over high-technology industries critical to America’s economy. But that message also galvanized bipartisan support in Washington to take action on rare earths, said Jane Nakano, a senior fellow at the Center for

Asylum Seekers See Cases Stall, Hopes Dim BY ALICIA A. CALDWELL

Tens of thousands of migrants who were waiting in Mexico on the slim hopes that their request for asylum in the U.S. might succeed are now stuck there indefinitely until the coronavirus pandemic eases and the border reopens. Under the year-old program called Migrant Protection Protocols, also known as “Remain in Mexico,” most people who request asylum in the U.S. are sent to wait in Mexico and only allowed over the border for hearings in immigration court every few months. Instituted by the Trump administration to deter previously skyrocketing illegal immigration by Central American families seeking asylum, the program dramatically lowered their odds of success. Just over 1% of migrants in MPP whose cases have been decided have been granted asylum or some other legal protection. The success rate for people who waited in the U.S. for their cases to be resolved, which used to be standard practice before MPP, was roughly 30% in the federal fiscal year that ended last September. Of the nearly 65,000 foreigners made to wait in Mexico for U.S. court decisions since the program began last year, roughly 20,000 still have cases pending. Others have appealed rejections of their pleas for protection. Now, with the closure of the U.S.-Mexico border to all but essential travel and the closing of immigration courts due to fears over the coronavirus, most of their cases have been stopped dead in their tracks. Maria, an asylum seeker from Latin America who was put into MPP just over two months ago, said she and others like her waiting in the Mexican border city of Nogales are equally afraid of contracting the coronavirus and the criminal organizations in the area. “We risk both of them to get food,” she said in Spanish via text message. Maria, who shares an apart-


International Peace who worked on arms-control issues at the State Department from 2011 to 2018. Mr. Billingslea has roots in the conservative national-security community and years of experience at senior levels of the Treasury Department, in the Pentagon and as a onetime aide to the late Sen. Jesse Helms (R., N.C.), who as Senate Foreign Relations Committee chairman opposed a raft of treaties, complaining they couldn’t be effectively verified. The envoy has kept a low profile since his April 10 appointment, but his selection was assailed by Sen. Bob Menendez (D., N.J.), the ranking member of the Foreign Relations Committee, as a “terrible decision” that also sidesteps the need for Senate confirmation. Some arms-control proponents took a similar view. “He has a troubling track record on arms control and appears to think that adversaries can be coerced to unconditionally capitulate to U.S. demands,” said Kingston Reif of the Arms Control Association, a private group. Mr. Billingslea’s supporters counter that he is prepared to support agreements if they serve U.S. interests. As a Senate aide, he drafted the resolution of ratification for the 1993 Start II treaty, which decreed that the number of deployed strategic warheads be reduced to 3,000 to 3,500. Mr. Billingslea served as the Defense Department representative on a delegation led by John Bolton—who later served for a time as Mr. Trump’s national-security adviser—that negotiated the 2002 Treaty of Moscow for the George W. Bush administration. It contained no verification provisions. Instead, the U.S. kept track of Russian forces by relying on the older 1991 Start I treaty’s verification arrangements, though they were set to lapse before the end of the Moscow Treaty. The Treaty of Moscow was superseded by New Start, which was signed in 2010 during the Obama administration and set a limit on deployed strategic warheads of 1,550. It provides for on-site inspections, and the State Department said in a report this month that Russia is in compliance. Chinese and Russian officials in Washington didn’t respond to a request for comment. China, insisting it isn’t interested in joining a three-way arms deal, has pointed to the far-larger U.S. and Russian arsenals. Russia has urged the U.S. to extend New Start.

WASHINGTON—A remote mountain mine in the California desert is poised to get a boost from the Pentagon, which sees the metals it extracts there as vital for national defense—but vulnerable to Chinese dominance over the supply chain. The Mountain Pass mine is the only domestic source for rare-earth minerals, which are needed for electronics, lasers, magnets and other applications used in weapons systems. The minerals require special processing after extraction, which is now done in China because the U.S. doesn’t have any facilities to do so. To eliminate that dependence, the Defense Department is helping to pay for developing a processing facility at the Mountain Pass mine, which is controlled by the Chicago hedge fund JHL Capital Group. The fund’s head, James Litinsky, first invested in Mountain Pass as a bet that growing rivalry between the world’s two largest economies would make its rare earths increasingly valuable. He said the Pentagon’s grant and growing U.S. government interest in his business validates that investment. “These supply-chain issues are now front and center,” Mr. Litinsky said. While the U.S. is now grappling with the coronavirus pandemic, “the industrial policy is just as much of a long-term crisis,” he said. The Pentagon is also providing grant funding to Australia’s Lynas Corp. and its partner, the U.S. chemical company Blue Line Corp., which want to build a plant in Texas. Both projects will be eligible for more grants to help with commercialization. “The department continues to work closely with the president, Congress and the industrial base to mitigate U.S. reliance on China for rare-earth minerals,” said Lt. Col. Mike Andrews, Defense Department spokesman. Mountain Pass, located about 15 miles west of the Nevada border, restarted production two years ago after the new owners started the com-

A growing number of migrants seeking asylum have been made to wait in Mexico for their cases to be resolved under the Trump administration's Migrant Protection Protocols Cumulative cases under MPP In thousands 70 60

With legal representation Without Legal representation

Country of origin for MPP participants In thousands

Outcome of hearings* In thousands



Guatemala Cuba



El Salvador




Venezuela 30


Nicaragua 10







0 2019








Note: *Includes present and absentia decisions Source: The Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC) at Syracuse University.

Removal Pending Other order

Grant relief


As President Trump’s new special envoy for arms control, Marshall Billingslea faces what many experts say is a nearly impossible mission: negotiating an accord that would cover all Chinese, Russian and American nuclear arms. A three-way nuclear-armscontrol agreement has been a goal for President Trump for a year, but Mr. Billingslea is looking at major hurdles. China has rebuffed U.S. entreaties to come to the negotiating table. The Russians have long balked at including their tactical nuclear weapons in a new accord. And time for any deal may be running out. The New Start treaty, which provides for inspections and limits Russian and U.S. longrange nuclear arms, is set to expire in early February. The accord can be extended for as long as five years by mutual consent, something the Trump administration is considering. That raises the possibility that one of the last building blocks of the arms-control framework governing the Russian and U.S. nuclear competition might collapse. “Billingslea is coming into this process very late and does not have much to build on,” said Pranay Vaddi, a fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for


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U.S. Targets Metals Vulnerability


Tough Test For Envoy On Arms Control

Lillian Morales waited in a shelter at a migrant encampment in Matamoros, Mexico, in mid-April. ment with other asylum seekers, recently had to take a bus about 10 hours to the east to report for a court hearing in El Paso, Texas, across the Rio Grande from Ciudad Juárez. When she arrived, border authorities told her that because of the coronavirus shutdown, her hearing was rescheduled for June. That is typical for MPP participants, who must make the long and sometimes dangerous trip to official border crossings on their scheduled dates just

to be told it has been rescheduled to May or June. “Requiring individuals to travel on crowded buses in the midst of the pandemic runs contrary to all public-health recommendations and best practices,” said Joanna Williams, director of education and outreach for aid group Kino Border Initiative. Mailing documents to people in MPP is typically impossible, as they tend to live in encampments, shelters or temporary apartments with no

stable address. Customs and Border Protection, which carries out the program, said that “due to logistical issues, coming to the port of entry in person and receiving new immigration hearing dates in person remains the most effective way to continue the process.” Advocates for the asylum seekers say the rates of success have fallen in part because of logistical hurdles such as fewer lawyers willing to cross the border to high-crime

Mexican cities, difficulty gathering and translating paperwork while living in a foreign country with few resources, and obstacles getting across the border to their hearings. “If the goal was to build a wall with Mexico with bricks and mortar, this administration has effectively gotten the same goal without building a wall,” said Muzaffar Chishti, director of the nonpartisan Migration Policy Institute’s office at New York University School of Law. Trump administration officials said the program gets decisions to migrants faster and more efficiently and has reduced illegal immigration. Arrests of people crossing from Mexico to the U.S. without legal authorization declined for eight straight months after reaching a 13-year high of more than 132,000 last May. The program has been challenged in court, and the Supreme Court recently ruled it may continue until a final court ruling. “What MPP also does is it allows us to administer the laws more effectively by assisting legitimate asylum seekers,” said Robert Pérez, deputy commissioner of Customs and Border Protection, at a conference last month. “MPP has absolutely been instrumental in our ability to address the ongoing national security crisis along our southwest border.” There aren’t data on how many migrants living in shelters or encampments are infected with Covid-19. Advocates have said some shelters are trying to quarantine people they believe are sick. Yet the sites are crowded and lack supplies such as soap, sanitizer and masks. As the border closure has essentially frozen MPP participants in place, shelters in Mexico are increasingly denying entry by new arrivals. In some instances, shelters won’t let migrants who have left to report for new court dates come back, fearing that they may have been infected while standing in crowded border port lines.

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A4 | Monday, April 27, 2020
































BY STEPHANIE ARMOUR AND REBECCA BALLHAUS WASHINGTON—President Trump told Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar in a call on Sunday that he wants to keep him in his post, after learning of discussions under way in the White House about replacing the secretary, according to a person familiar with the matter. The Wall Street Journal and other outlets reported on Saturday that administration officials were discussing replacing Mr. Azar following criticism of his management of the early response to the coronavirus pandemic. Mr. Trump was frustrated by the reports and wanted to push back, another person familiar with the matter said. The president tweeted on Sunday that the reports were “fake news” and that the sec-

retary was doing an “excellent job.” Mr. Azar issued his own tweet calling reports of his potential ouster “#FakeNews.” Administration officials said the White House is hesitant to shake up the leadership of HHS during a pandemic, though they acknowledged that frustration with the secretary has been growing in recent weeks. Internal conversations about a possible replacement for Mr. Azar had taken on a far more serious tone in recent days, the officials said. The president has previously indicated his own frustrations with Mr. Azar, tweeting this month in response to reports that Mr. Trump didn’t act early enough to respond to coronavirus that Mr. Azar “told me nothing until later.” In recent weeks, there have been multiple signs that the White House was seeking to

exert greater control over HHS. Mark Meadows, the White House chief of staff, has asked John Fleming, a senior adviser to Mr. Meadows, to serve as a liaison between the White House, HHS and the Food and Drug Administration to allow for “constant communication” on vaccine development, an administration official said. The president this month installed a former campaign aide, Michael Caputo, to serve as assistant secretary for public affairs at HHS. The White House also appointed policy adviser Emily Newman as a liaison to HHS who will oversee the agency’s political hires. Since Mr. Azar began serving as HHS secretary in January 2018, he and the president have clashed repeatedly, officials said. Mr. Trump has been critical of the secretary’s handling of


Trump Denies Plan to Push Out HHS Boss

Alex Azar drug pricing and of a ban on ecigarettes and berated him on the latter issue when Mr. Azar called in late January to brief the president on the potential severity of the coronavirus threat, the Journal has previously reported. In late February, after a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention official said in

a briefing that the administration was preparing for a potential pandemic, a furious Mr. Trump called Mr. Azar on his flight from India to Washington and threatened to oust the official, the Journal has reported. The next day, the president replaced Mr. Azar as head of a White House coronavirus task force with Vice President Mike Pence. Administration officials, including those on Mr. Pence’s team, were upset over circumstances surrounding the ouster last week of Rick Bright, who had been serving as director of the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, or Barda. Mr. Azar had framed Dr. Bright’s transfer from Barda director to a National Institutes of Health position as effectively a promotion, and the vice president and other officials were taken

aback when they later read a statement from Dr. Bright alleging that his ouster amounted to retaliation. Dr. Bright said through his lawyers he would ask the HHS inspector general to “investigate the manner in which this Administration has politicized the work of BARDA and has pressured me and other conscientious scientists to fund companies with political connections as well as efforts that lack scientific merit.” Mr. Azar, 52 years old, served as HHS general counsel and later deputy secretary under President George W. Bush, then worked as the top lobbyist for Eli Lilly & Co., the pharmaceutical company. Mr. Trump nominated him as HHS secretary after Tom Price resigned from the post under pressure over hundreds of thousands of dollars he had spent on chartered flights.

Mnuchin Expresses Confidence in Rebound IRS Is the vast majority of governors in this country—Republican and Democratic—would agree with him,” Ms. Whitmer said. Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan, a Republican, said he thought Sen. McConnell’s bankruptcy comment must have slipped out and was hopeful that the senator would support further aid to states in another stimulus. Without more federal aid, states will be forced to make budget cuts that affect first responders and educators, said New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy. “We need states to be fully funded at the point of attack,” Mr. Murphy, a Democrat, said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.” Mr. Murphy said his hard-hit state is still several weeks away from loosening restrictions.


Larimer Square in downtown Denver was largely vacant on Saturday as businesses remain closed by a stay-at-home order from Colorado Gov. Jared Polis.

States Start Coronavirus Daily Update To Reopen 965,435 54,856 Economy As of 9:31 p.m. EDT April 26

U.S. cases

Continued from Page One and state officials said. The number of confirmed infections neared one million in the U.S., according to figures from Johns Hopkins University. Deborah Birx, a White House health official coordinating the coronavirus response, said the government is seeing cases come down but that doesn’t mean life will return to normal. She had been asked about a comment by Vice President Mike Pence, who said last week that the pandemic would largely be behind the U.S. by Memorial Day. “Social distancing will be with us through the summer, to really ensure that we protect one another as we move through these phases,” she said on NBC. Meanwhile, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told Fox News he expects the economy to bounce back in July, August and September as closed businesses resume operations. “As businesses begin to open, you’re going to see [the] demand side of the economy rebound,” Mr. Mnuchin said. The confirmed death toll in the U.S. rose to 54,856 on Sun-

U.S. deaths

2,970,705 206,495 World-wide cases

World-wide deaths

106,985 U.S. recoveries

865,985 World-wide recoveries

Source: Johns Hopkins University Center for Systems Science and Engineering

day, three months after the first case of contamination was reported in the country. Globally, almost three million people have tested positive and more than 206,000 are confirmed to have died of the virus. Some experts said these figures understate the extent of the pandemic. States including Alaska, Georgia, Tennessee, Texas, and South Carolina began easing shutdown orders in recent days, prompting businesses to slowly reopen with social-distancing guidelines and other restrictions in place. Some health experts have said lifting lockdown measures too soon could weaken progress on controlling the virus’s spread. Guidelines from the Trump administration, which outline three phases of reopening, place the onus on governors to lift measures based on data from individual states. The measures say governors should move into the first phase of the

plan—reopening restaurants, places of worships, movie theaters and other venues with strict social-distancing guidelines—after the state sees a downward trend of documented coronavirus cases or positive tests during a twoweek period. Scott Gottlieb, former commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, said on CBS on Sunday that Georgia’s reopening “does up the risk of infection. Georgia’s certainly not out of the woods.” In Georgia, residents and business owners had mixed responses to an order by Gov. Brian Kemp, a Republican, allowing nonessential businesses to reopen as soon as this past Friday—with some anxious to return to work, and others worried it was too soon. At Suwanee Barber Shop in Suwanee, Ga., manager Thao Ho said appointments have been booked from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. since the shop reopened

on Friday. Many customers have inquired about protective measures the shop is taking, she said. Employees wear masks and other protective gear, Ms. Ho said, and clean chairs and other surfaces after each customer. Customers often wear masks, too, she said. Two barbers haven’t returned to work and won’t until they feel it is safe, Ms. Ho said. Governors across the country have sought to increase testing capacity—a move health experts have said is necessary to better trace the virus’s spread and safely introduce reopening measures. As some state leaders began to ease lockdown measures this month, others extended stayat-home orders. Some governors in hard-hit states like New York and New Jersey have pointed to signs of the virus slowing but are still reporting a significant number of new infections and deaths.

Calling in Thousands Of Workers


accepting applications Monday for the second round of the Paycheck Protection Program, the small-business loan and loanforgiveness program that Congress replenished late last week. “The sooner the money is disbursed the better,” Mr. Mnuchin said. “I actually hope we run out of money quickly so we can get the money into workers’ pockets.” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) had said he would support changes in federal law to allow states to file for bankruptcy. On Sunday, Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, a Democrat, said bankruptcy wasn’t an option. “For Senator McConnell to suggest that is incredibly dangerous, and I don’t think that



man of the Council of Economic Advisers under President Trump, said he doesn’t expect the U.S. economy to experience a V-shaped recovery without another round of “really solid legislation.” “It’s a really grave situation,” he said in an interview on ABC’s “This Week” with George Stephanopoulos on Sunday. “This is the biggest negative shock that our economy I think has ever seen.” Mr. Hassett, who has returned to the White House as an adviser, expects the unemployment rate to approach Great Depression levels. The CBO projected a third-quarter unemployment rate of 16% and unemployment of 9.5% at the end of 2021. The administration will start



WASHINGTON—The economy should bounce back in July, August and September as closed businesses resume operations, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in an interview aired Sunday. “As businesses begin to open, you’re going to see [the] demand side of the economy rebound,” Mr. Mnuchin said on “Fox News Sunday.” That resembles the forecast issued Friday by the Congressional Budget Office, which expects a sharp contraction in this quarter and then growth at an annual rate of 17% in the second half of the year. That rebound depends on

many unknowns, including the spread of the novel coronavirus, the pace at which governors reopen their states’ economies and whether subsequent waves of infections happen. Some Republicans are raising concerns about the national debt. Mr. Mnuchin said the U.S. should spend whatever is needed. Colorado Gov. Jared Polis, a Democrat who is relaxing his state’s stay-at-home order, said the strictest measures need to be replaced with policies that can be psychologically and economically sustainable for weeks and months. “We’re all worried about a potential for a second spike,” he said on CNN’s “State of the Union” Sunday. Kevin Hassett, former chair-

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New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said 367 people died in the state on Saturday and that hospitalization rates and intubations were down. “Still 1,000 new Covid cases yesterday, to put it in focus,” he said. “That would normally be terrible news. It is only not terrible news compared to where we were.” Mr. Cuomo also outlined Sunday a phased reopening for New York, based on guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that allow for reopenings to begin after a 14day decline in the hospitalization rate. Mr. Cuomo said these phases may begin in upstate regions less affected by the virus shortly after May 15, when the state’s stay-at-home order is set to expire. Businesses will reopen based on regional analysis, Mr. Cuomo said, and two weeks will occur between each phase to monitor infection rates. Construction and manufacturing will be the first businesses to reopen, according to the governor’s broad guidelines, and businesses deemed “more essential” would follow suit. Even without a decision to loosen restrictions, many New York City residents enjoyed warmer spring temperatures and abundant sunshine in Central Park Saturday. Some abided by social-distancing guidelines and facial coverings, while others didn’t. —Richard Rubin and Sarah Cheney contributed to this article.

WASHINGTON—The Internal Revenue Service is bringing thousands of employees back to agency offices on Monday to deal with a growing backlog of work amid the coronavirus pandemic. The IRS is recalling some people who do work that must be done in person, according to an internal email released by Reps. Richard Neal (D., Mass.) and John Lewis (D., Ga.). In that email, IRS executives told workers they would be required to wear cloth face coverings and bring their own in case the government couldn’t provide them yet. In a statement this weekend, the IRS said it has requested several thousand workers to return with incentive pay but isn’t requiring anyone to come back. The agency said it prioritizes employee health, emphasized that it is following federal guidelines and said it expects to have protective personal equipment for workers soon. “Bringing employees back to work is essential to address mission-critical needs for the nation, and the IRS is an essential component to our country’s whole-of-government approach to confronting the Covid-19 pandemic,” the IRS statement said. About 10,000 workers at 10 IRS centers are expected to return, according to the National Treasury Employees Union, which represents IRS workers. The agency had more than 70,000 workers in 2018. The two senior Democrats on the House Ways and Means Committee warned that the move may be unsafe. “It is completely irresponsible and unethical for the IRS to demand those workers obtain their own protective equipment,” Messrs. Neal and Lewis said in a statement. Although many tax deadlines have been postponed, the IRS has been extraordinarily busy during the pandemic. The agency has been at the center of the government’s response, sending out the one-time stimulus payments of $1,200 per adult and $500 per child. The IRS also has been writing new rules and preparing to expedite tax refunds to businesses under the economic-relief law passed by Congress last month. That work has happened remotely and largely behind the scenes. The public-facing part of the IRS has been dormant because employees who normally work in large call centers and processing facilities were sent home. Mail has been piling up in trailers, and phone calls have been going unanswered, leaving taxpayers frustrated. According to Messrs. Neal and Lewis, IRS Commissioner Chuck Rettig told congressional staff members that 100 IRS employees have been diagnosed with the coronavirus and that four of them have died. The IRS statement didn’t offer any details about those cases.

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A6 | Monday, April 27, 2020



Farmers Forced to Destroy Their Crops

Orders for produce, milk, eggs dry up amid pandemic’s disruption to the supply chain

Workers picking squash at Fancy Farms in Plant City, Fla., where a dead strawberry plant is shown below. Carl Grooms, the owner, says orders evaporated almost overnight. might just pay for them and tell the nursery to not even bother shipping them. That’s not likely, he hopes. John Harris, president of Harris Farms in Coalinga, Calif., said his business has seen a drop in demand for lettuce, too, but he is going to continue planting in hopes consumer buying habits rebound. Mr. Grooms knows strawberries aren’t needed to sustain life, but everybody needs more than the basics. “You can’t just eat beef and taters every day,” he said. —Jim Carlton contributed to this article.


Prices on strawberries have dropped, indicating most California growers, at least, are getting the crops out of the fields, said Kevin Schooley, executive director of the North American Strawberry Growers Association. While demand is still lagging, he hopes demand rebounds as people get used to being at home and want fresh food. Because of the long lead times, Mr. Grooms and other commercial berry farmers have already placed orders with nurseries for the delicate plants they will need for harvests months down the road. He said that while he is already on the hook for thousands of berry plants, if demand is still cratered in coming months, he


tons of lettuce from a warehouse where they had awaited shipment and dump them back in the fields to be plowed under. “The demand [from the large customers] just went to zero,” said Mr. Borba, who manages 10,000 acres under his Borba Farms. “And not only did we lose restaurants and schools, but people were going to the grocery store buying nonperishable stuff to put in the pantry. They were not buying leafy greens.” On Friday, President Trump announced a $19 billion relief program for the agriculture sector. The effort will include direct payments to farmers and ranchers and mass purchases of dairy, meat and produce that will be distributed through

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Farmer Carl Grooms has been planning harvests for decades but now he is getting ready to plow under his nearly ripe peppers and beans because there is no market to buy them—and he doesn’t want to watch them rot. As the coronavirus pandemic disrupts supply chains, American farmers are dumping milk, throwing out eggs and plowing under healthy crops. Produce suppliers are especially vulnerable to surpluses because fruits and vegetables are perishable and can’t be stored. “We’re not just going to let [the food] die, we’ll go in and destroy it,” said Mr. Grooms, the 74-year-old owner of Fancy Farms in Plant City, Fla. “It’s a mental thing, you don’t want to see your crop rot and suffer.” Mr. Grooms said that a few weeks ago, berry orders evaporated nearly overnight and the strawberry harvest collapsed, with much of it remaining in the fields rather than being picked and shipped. It left a stench of rotting berries hanging over his farm. Right now, he has the labor to pick ripe squash, but he has to sell it for a fraction of typical prices, just enough to cover his workers’ pay and the cost of boxes to ship the vegetables, he said. Lettuce producer Mark Borba, in Huron, Calif., said he has had to plow under 230 of 680 acres of recently harvested lettuce since the pandemic swept the country a month ago. He said demand fell so sharply from restaurants, schools and other large customers that his crews had to unpack 9,000 car-



food banks. This follows steps the administration is taking to reduce costs and restrictions on farmers looking to hire migrant workers during the coronavirus pandemic, including

lowering their minimum wages. Mr. Grooms of Fancy Farms said he is optimistic Mr. Trump will ensure the H-2A migrant worker visa program, which farmers rely on, can continue.

 Ethanol sales collapse, in threat to farms......................... B6

Fed Set for Return Of Lending Program

Hospital Demanded A Bailout


Mayor Sal Panto of Easton, Pa., who is also a member of the hospital’s board of trustees.


Continued from Page One and sometimes shutting hospitals is adding to the healthcare system’s strains. Now the firms with struggling healthcare investments find themselves in unwelcome fights with local communities. “Hospitals should be community assets,” said Pennsylvania state Rep. Robert Freeman, a Democrat whose district includes Easton. “They shouldn’t be subject to the kinds of corporate raiding that goes on in the private sector.” A Steward spokesman said the company has gone “above and beyond to try to keep the Easton Hospital open” during the pandemic. He said Easton Hospital has struggled financially for years and money it accepted from the government was the bare minimum to maintain operations. Beyond Easton, Steward faced complaints in Massachusetts from lawmakers of both parties and a nurse’s union for reducing services for two small intensive-care units. Two private-equity-owned hospitals in Philadelphia and San Antonio have also closed in the past year, sparking protests. Total assets controlled by private-equity firms have more than doubled since the financial crisis to more than $4 trillion. That cash has flowed from global investors such as sovereign-wealth funds and pension funds into investments that touch every corner of the U.S., including hospital chains. One of the best-known firms is Cerberus. The company ran into trouble in the financial crisis after it bought an 80% stake in Chrysler for $7.4 billion. The firm gave up its Chrysler stake as part of the autoindustry bailout, although Cerberus continued to own Chrysler’s financing arm until 2011. Firm co-founder and coChief Executive Stephen Feinberg has been a major Trump election donor and was appointed to lead the Republican president’s intelligence-advisory board. Founded 130 years ago with donations from local churchgoers, Easton Hospital was a nonprofit until 2001, when it



was sold to Community Health Systems Inc., a publicly traded hospital chain. In a complicated eight-hospital deal in 2017, the company sold the operations of Easton and the other hospitals to Steward, the company owned by Cerberus, and it sold the hospitals’ property to a realestate trust in which Cerberus held a small stake for about $300 million. As a result, the Easton hospital was forced to pay millions of dollars in annual rent on property it previously owned. Steward “thought they were

Even before the virus hit, Steward wanted out of the investment. going to turn it around, but they didn’t,” Mr. Panto, a Democrat, said. Even before the virus hit, Steward wanted out of the struggling investment, with Easton Hospital losing more than $5 million in February alone. It lined up a buyer for Easton Hospital, a local nonprofit medical system called St. Luke’s University Health Network, but warned officials that if the deal failed to close on time, Steward would close Easton Hospital around May 15. The pandemic led St. Luke’s to postpone the deal. The delay led Steward to seek a bail-

out. Worried that Easton would suffer if the hospital closed, St. Luke’s cosigned the bailout request letter to Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf, a Democrat. By late March, Pennsylvania officials feared Easton—about 70 miles from both New York and Philadelphia—could be hard-hit by the virus. Steward’s bailout request came on March 22. “Without your assistance, Steward must now close the hospital,” read the letter signed by Michael Callum, a Steward executive vice president. State Rep. Freeman asked Mr. Wolf to intercede. “I cannot stress enough the importance of keeping Easton Hospital open,” Mr. Freeman wrote to the governor’s office. In a March 25 conference call that included a representative for the governor, staffers for Republican Sen. Pat Toomey and Democratic Rep. Susan Wild, and St. Luke’s and Steward, the state agreed to give Steward $8 million to cover Easton Hospital’s costs for 30 days, said people involved, while efforts continued to seek more aid. Steward pledged to return to the state any of the money it ended up not using. A person close to Cerberus said the firm wasn’t involved in any discussions with officials over a bailout. By March 27, Steward was convinced Pennsylvania’s government was trying to backtrack on the initial Easton Hospital deal, with the state pushing that a written agree-

ment for the $8 million of aid include June 30 as an enddate, people on both sides said. Steward feared that could legally bind it to operate the hospital through June even if no more money came through. Steward fired off another letter, giving Mr. Wolf a midnight deadline. Otherwise “Steward Health Care will proceed immediately on planning to close the facility,” it wrote. Up against the clock, the state agreed to change the end date of the aid agreement to April 30, and gave Steward $8 million to keep the hospital running. A person close to the governor said Pennsylvania still expected Steward to keep Easton Hospital open for the duration of the pandemic. “We are pleased that the community’s needs were met and applaud Steward’s decision to forgo any profits while exploring solutions that will continue to support the Easton community,” a Cerberus spokesman said. Ultimately, the coronavirus wave officials feared hasn’t fully materialized. Easton Hospital recently had about 10 Covid-19 patients. The county where it is located has had around 1,800 total cases and at least 49 deaths. Steward is again talking to St. Luke’s about a possible deal that would save Easton Hospital. But with a deal uncertain and further bailout money for Easton unclear, Steward recently informed Mr. Wolf it was still considering a shutdown.

Investors are preparing for the return of a stimulus program that produced big profits during the last financial crisis— and could reignite a debate over how much Wall Street benefits from Washington’s emergency lending. The $100 billion Term AssetBacked Loan Facility is a reprise of a program launched in 2009 that enabled investors to buy bonds linked to consumer and business debt using money borrowed from the Federal Reserve. The central bank and other supporters say the program, known as TALF, helped unfreeze credit markets vital to the workings of the economy. If it works as intended, TALF will jolt the market into reviving the issuance of new bonds, which spreads risk to investors and allows lenders to continue making loans. On the other hand, the Fed could face criticism for helping to supercharge returns for some of the biggest investors at a time when millions of Americans are losing their jobs. “They are trying to ensure there is money available to continue purchasing important sources of liquidity for consumer and business lending,” said Tim Clark, a former deputy director of supervision at the Fed who is now a senior banking adviser at Better Markets, an advocacy group for stricter financial regulation. “The fact that on the back side there may be some money to be made by participants in those markets has to be a secondary consideration.” The Fed hasn’t said when TALF will open, but many investors expect it will begin in May. Investors hope to profit by buying bonds at a time of market distress, when prices are low, and selling them once prices recover. They will be able to borrow up to 95% of the cost of the securities from the Fed, depending on the type of debt. The newest version offers many of the features that made the program enticing to Wall Street in 2009, including cheap loans and a low probability of losses on AAA-minus-rated debt. But the new program may also be harder to capitalize on, since lending conditions have already improved somewhat— lowering the ceiling on bond

returns—and the earliest entrants may soak up the best opportunities. “TALF is going to reward the fund managers who are able to move quickly into this,” said Timothy Spangler, a partner in the financial-services practice at law firm Dechert LLP. Some of the world’s biggest money managers, including BlackRock Inc. and Pacific Investment Management Co., along with a slew of hedge funds, bought assets during the first version of TALF. Some participants earned as much as 48% at the height of the 2009 panic, though returns were more commonly in the range of 20% to 40%. Then and now, TALF targeted newly issued bonds backed by student, auto and credit-card loans and other assets. It also includes bonds linked to business liabilities, such as loans made to car dealers to finance their inventories, and to heavily indebted companies with below-investmentgrade credit ratings, as well as securities backed by mortgages on U.S. commercial properties. Analysts at JPMorgan Chase & Co. said April 15 that investors could earn 21% on AAArated bonds backed by subprime auto loans and 16% on debt tied to privately issued student loans. Other experts say there are limits to potential for profits. Borrowing costs, which soared in March even for the most heavily traded asset-backed securities, have continued to fall since the Fed announced the program in March. That shows how just the Fed’s promise to support markets helps to limit the damage from the virus. The extra yield over benchmark Treasury bonds that investors demand to purchase triple-A commercial-mortgagebacked bonds has dropped by about one-third since late March, according to research by Citigroup Inc. Investors who participate in TALF 2.0 can probably expect percentage returns in the “midto-high single digits on the low end to the low teens on the high end,” said Greg Leonberger, director of research and managing partner at consulting firm Marquette Associates Inc.  Many, but not all, public firms to return aid............................... B5

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Monday, April 27, 2020 | A7

* * * * *


China Eases Medical Gear’s Export Path NG HAN GUAN/ASSOCIATED PRESS

China offered a new route for producers of medical goods to obtain export approval, a move that could help ease recent shipment delays of face masks, test kits and other critical medical equipment to fight coronavirus to the U.S. and other countries. Makers of medical gear in China that met the national standards of their foreign buyer can apply for export approval through an industry association, Chinese authorities said on Sunday. This would allow manufacturers to bypass an earlier rule that required exporters to obtain a certification from Chinese medical-product regulators. The policy, introduced on March 31 to boost quality control of Chinese medical-supplies exports, led to a significant shipment bottleneck in

A worker sorts packaged masks prepared for export at the Wuhan Zonsen Medical Products Co. in central China. Beijing has come under fire over exports of low-quality personal protective equipment sent to some countries. In late March, Dutch authorities recalled 600,000 medical face masks sourced from China because of faulty filters. Last week, the Chinese Embassy in Canada said it has started an investigation after local media reports said about a million N95 masks sent from China had failed to meet the

dustry association called China Chamber of Commerce for Import and Export of Medicines and Health Products would form an expert review committee responsible for approving export contracts, Mr. Li said in a press conference. A list of approved deals would then be uploaded onto its website, he added. Mr. Li didn’t provide more details on when such an expert committee would be formed.

Canadian public-health agency’s quality standards, citing public-health authorities. Many of the export issues have arisen from product standards that differ by country. In some cases, nonmedical items were used for surgical purposes, Mr. Li said. To ensure the quality of the medical goods being exported, China has been conducting random checks and factory inspections, officials said.

Separately, China introduced another rule on Saturday that requires exporters and importers of masks for nonmedical use to sign a declaration that the items met the quality standards of either China or the foreign importing nation. Exporters and importers will also have to vouch that these products wouldn’t be used in surgical settings. —Raffaele Huang contributed to this article.



items including masks, ventilators, surgical gowns and testing reagents, essential for medical workers world-wide to fight the coronavirus pandemic. China’s export rules weren’t meant to restrict exports of items required to fight the pandemic, but to help improve quality control of those products, said Li Xingqian, a director at the Ministry of Commerce. More than a billion masks were exported on Friday, almost five times the number of masks that left the country on March 31, he said. The new regulation follows an outcry by U.S. and other international buyers that important medical-supply exports have been held up in China, one of the largest producers of medical gear globally. Because of the March rule, large quantities of U.S.-bound face masks, test kits and other medical equipment were stranded in China, according to U.S. diplomatic memos seen by The Wall Street Journal this month. China also put in place tighter customs inspections on April 10. Under the latest rule, an in-


Authorities say goods meeting foreign buyers’ national standards can be open to sales bids


Ross Sapir’s customers are clear when they call to hire a moving van: They are leaving New York City because of the coronavirus crisis and they aren’t sure when, or if, they are returning. Mr. Sapir, president of Roadway Moving, said his storage business is booming as people with the motivation and means flee the epicenter of the pandemic, which had killed more than 11,000 in New York City as of Sunday. Many clients are leaving before figuring out where they are going and want movers to go into their now-uninhabited apartments, pack everything up and put it in storage. “It’s a great opportunity for us,” said Mr. Sapir, adding that his company’s 110,000-squarefeet of storage space is nearly full. “But I’m not sure how it’s going to affect the city, economy-wise.” New York City’s economy depends on people—millions of people—wanting to live here, crammed together in small apartments, crowded sidewalks and packed subway cars. But after decades of growth, the city’s population has declined for the past three years, which

the pandemic threatens to accelerate. An exodus could leave the city—as well as others that experience a high number of cases—without the workforce needed to attract businesses and the tax revenue to provide vital services. New York City’s population has plummeted before. The city lost more than 10% of its residents between 1970 and 1980, when deindustrialization decimated urban manufacturing industries, said William Frey, senior fellow at the Metropolitan Policy Program at the Brookings Institution. The accompanying fiscal crisis brought the city to the verge of bankruptcy and took years to recover from. By 2016, the city’s population had grown from over 7 million in 1980 to nearly 8.4 million, according to the U.S. census. Now, with the coronavirus spread through close contact, that critical mass has become a liability. “If a large number of people start to leave now, it could spiral,” said Jonathan Bowles, executive director of the nonpartisan think tank Center for an Urban Future. “It would be a huge blow to the city’s finances and leave the city struggling to pay for the



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Exodus Looms as New York City Residents Pack Up

A mover with Roadway Moving. The company’s storage business has boomed as some New Yorkers have moved out amid the pandemic.

ten prematurely several times, including after 9/11, when many feared people would be too worried about another terrorist attack to live in or visit the city. In fact, New York

things that make New York great, like the subway system, like parks, like schools.” However, Mr. Bowles and others stressed that New York City’s obituary has been writ-

City’s population and tourism industry have boomed since 2001. Seth Pinsky, the former president of the New York City Economic Development Corporation who helped lead the city’s economic-development effort after the 2007-09 recession, said New York officials have to ensure people feel safe and that New York City is still worth it. “New York has always been a difficult place to live,” he said. “The city is dirty, it’s crowded and it’s expensive. But the reason people have consistently made that trade off is the benefits outweigh the cost.” A spokesman for Mayor Bill de Blasio said the mayor wants to rebuild the city to be stronger than it was before the pandemic, making it more hospitable for businesses, workers and families. John Boyd Jr., principal at the corporate site-selection firm the Boyd Company Inc., based in Princeton, N.J., said he has heard from companies that are re-evaluating their plans to move to New York. Several executives have told him they are very worried that city officials will need to increase corporate taxes to raise revenue.

He also said a lot of attractive and affordable real estate outside New York City could be opening up—given low financing rates and the likelihood that many already-struggling bricks-and-mortar businesses, such as malls and movie theaters, won’t reopen after the pandemic. The labor market’s dramatic shift, from record-low unemployment to a surge in job losses, means some businesses will have an easier time finding talent in lower-cost areas or persuading people to relocate outside New York, Mr. Boyd said. For Jaime Hochhauser, the coronavirus pandemic feels like the beginning of her leaving New York story. Ms. Hochhauser, who owns the household-staffing business HomeFront Lifestyle Staffing and lives in Forest Hills Gardens, Queens, fled with her husband and children to live with her in-laws in the Hamptons. Ms. Hochhauser said she doesn’t see her family going back to New York City for at least a year. “I don’t feel it’s a healthy environment to raise children in right now,” she said. “I don’t know if I’ll ever feel comfortable getting on the subway again.”


Counting On a New Approach to Census

BY EBONY REED The Rev. Deth Im knows what it feels like to be isolated. A native of Cambodia who immigrated to the U.S. with his family in 1973, he didn’t have a way to identify his race for most of his school years. “I was forced to check the ‘other’ box,” Mr. Im said during an interview from his home in Kansas City, Mo. “So, I know what it’s like to be and feel invisible.” Today, the 49-year-old community activist is making sure those isolated amid the coronavirus pandemic are counted in the 2020 U.S. census. As director of training and development at Faith in Action—a network of faith-based organizations—he is working to adapt traditional methods of contacting the underrepresented for an era when knocking on doors is impossible. “Our census work has moved to a completely digital format.” The Census Bureau ex-

tended the deadline for the count by two weeks this summer, but that doesn’t make the job any easier. Census volunteers rely on frontporch conversations or large gatherings to get the word out. Mr. Im’s plans for leaders in 24 states to get congregants to talk in-person with neighbors are on ice. Working long days from his home, he spends time encouraging volunteers to approach the job differently. He makes sure technical issues— from a lack of internet access to a supply of working gear— are addressed for volunteers. Everything learned during the census drive can be applied during get-out-the-vote efforts this fall. “We’re trying to be really

relational. More so than if we were trying to get through door-knocks and complete a list, or using a traditional call list.” Online block parties have replaced traditional events; Facebook Q&A sessions are conducted in multiple languages. Organizers encourage people to photograph themselves while completing the census form and share those images on social media. The pace of canvassing has changed during this census season. Often, the first call from a volunteer will be a wellness check. The conversation could touch on someone’s mental health, or how they physically feel. Questions are also asked about food supply, unemployment benefits and


As the new coronavirus forces big changes in how we work, The Wall Street Journal is looking at how different people are coping with the stresses and risks. For earlier articles in the series, visit wsj.com/makingitwork.

The Rev. Deth Im, a community activist in Missouri, is making sure those isolated amid the pandemic are counted in the census.

ability to pay the rent. “We may just want to ask how someone is doing,” Mr. Im said. Census volunteers have asked about a respondent’s access to hand sanitizer or masks, and whether their jobs were safe. At the end of one of these calls, volunteers will ask if they can call again to talk about their plan for being counted. Will they fill the census out online? On the phone? Through the mail? Many people are quarantined, so reaching a person on the phone isn’t as much of a challenge. So-called touch rates are robust. But communicating without the benefit of body language isn’t always easy. “We’re really working on deepening our listening skills so we can hear verbal cues over the phone, so we can ask follow-up questions,” Mr. Im said. Mr. Im has three daughters home on a part-time basis, and says it is important to not let census work or preparation for this fall’s voting drive become a “24/7 process.” Mr. Im is already working with teams to analyze the new processes to see what is effective for the 2020 election season. “We’re gathering a bunch of data,” he said. Volunteers are poised to shift gears. “In the midst of the unknown, we need firm backup plans.”

every one

deserves a decent place to live.

Learn more at habitat.org.

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A8 | Monday, April 27, 2020

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Prime Minister Boris Johnson, shown in an April 12 photo, is set to return to work on Monday after recovering from the virus.

at least May 7. But the government hasn’t announced how it proposes to relax those measures, assuming the number of new cases continues to fall. “The U.K. government is behind the curve on this,” Keir Starmer, the leader of the opposition Labour Party, wrote in a letter to Mr. Johnson on Saturday. “I fear we are falling behind the rest of the world.” Covid-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus, has claimed more than 20,000 lives in the U.K., with hospital deaths in recent days running

at about 800 daily, leaving the country on track to be one of the worst hit in Europe. With Mr. Johnson out of action, a vacuum appeared at the top of government. Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab was deputized in Mr. Johnson’s absence but has played a cautious hand awaiting his boss’s return. “We’re at a delicate and dangerous stage,” Mr. Raab said on Sunday. “We need to make sure the next steps are sure-footed.” A particular worry is that the virus will resurge once restric-

tions are lifted, he said. When the coronavirus hit the U.K. in late January, Mr. Johnson looked to lead the country from the front, regularly appearing at daily press conferences. By March 26, he had tested positive for the virus. He was admitted to a London hospital on April 5 as his symptoms worsened, receiving oxygen in an intensive-care unit, but left a week later. Since then, he has been recuperating in the prime minister’s country manor with his pregnant fiancée. Officials say he remained in touch with aides and senior ministers. Last week, he called President Trump and Queen Elizabeth II. In his absence, the government has been under increasing scrutiny, in particular over why the death toll is so high given the virus took hold in Britain nearly a month after it struck Italy. Mr. Johnson didn’t attend the first five emergency meetings his government held on the coronavirus in January and February. Downing Street says they were led by other senior ministers and that isn’t unusual. Britain initially held off imposing full lockdown restrictions, something the U.K. government has repeatedly said

was guided by scientists’ advice. But the government hasn’t disclosed which scientists advised it or what they recommended. Meanwhile, the government didn’t roll out mass testing, arguing that resources were better focused on testing those who were hospitalized. Epidemiologists now warn that the virus is so widespread in the U.K. that mass testing to track down infected people isn’t yet practicable. Mr. Raab defended the government on Sunday, saying the social-distancing strategy had saved many lives and that the National Health Service hasn’t been overwhelmed. Britons are embracing the lockdown, with polls saying voters are in favor of it continuing. Mr. Johnson’s government’s approval ratings have risen since the crisis, with 51% of voters trusting him on the issue, according to a recent YouGov poll. A strategy shift is under way. The U.K. aims to administer 100,000 tests a day by the end of the month. The British army is touring the country with mobile testing units to help screen essential workers for infection. “We’re learning lessons as we go through this,” Mr. Raab said.


LONDON—British Prime Minister Boris Johnson returns to work on Monday after recovering from a serious coronavirus infection to face critical decisions over how and when to reopen the country’s paralyzed economy. Since Mr. Johnson was wheeled into intensive care on April 7, his government has struggled to articulate a way to loosen restrictions as the death toll from the new coronavirus mounts. With ministers declaring that the U.K.’s outbreak has peaked, Mr. Johnson is due to hold meetings this week to outline how and if Britain will relax its lockdown in May. Britain’s belated efforts to implement a policy of mass testing and struggles to acquire protective equipment for health workers have generated criticism from opposition politicians that the government has been flat-footed in responding to the crisis. Meanwhile, lawmakers are pushing him to stamp his authority on proceedings and map a way out of the crisis, which has left the British economy in free fall. Mr. Johnson announced a lockdown on March 23, and it has since been extended until

PARIS—When coronavirus patients flooded hospitals in eastern France in March, swiftly filling up intensive-care units, doctors sounded the alarm: They were running out of beds and would have to start refusing care. “That is when we realized that transferring patients might save us,” said Yannick Gottwalles, head of emergency medicine at a hospital in Colmar, near the German border. Soon, French health authorities launched one of the nation’s most complex medical-logistics operations of the postwar era, sending hundreds of critically ill patients

from eastern France, and later Paris—as shown above—on highspeed trains to hospitals in parts of the country where the epidemic wasn’t raging. While the peak of the epidemic has passed in many countries, health authorities around the world are bracing for a second wave of infections this year as they lift lockdowns. Doctors and health authorities say France’s model of large-scale patient transfers could help health systems handle a new surge in cases. “We should be prepared to have this be one of the plays in our playbook if a second surge

would come in the fall,” said Michael Rose, a resident physician at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore who has been treating Covid-19 patients. When the outbreak began, authorities outside France mostly added intensive-care beds in pandemic hot spots, rather than transfer patients to less-impacted areas. New York City hospitals raced to convert normal hospital beds into intensive-care beds. Authorities have set up overflow hospitals in Central Park and the Javits Center. In London, the National Health Service relied on the military to

refashion a conference center into a temporary facility with 4,000 beds. French officials say these makeshift arrangements are vital in a crisis but can’t deliver the same level of care as a normally staffed intensive-care unit at an established hospital. French health authorities quickly made plans to more than double the number of intensivecare slots to 10,500. But with more than 7,000 ICU beds filled at the peak of the crisis, they transferred 644 patients, mostly to hospitals hundreds of miles away, on military planes, boats and high-



French Authorities Get Rolling to Transfer Patients From Overwhelmed Hospitals


ROME—Italy announced a timetable for reopening its economy and daily life beginning May 4, a milestone in its fight against the coronavirus pandemic. Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte said the lockdown on industry, services and social contacts will end in stages. He said a resurgence could force a return of restrictions. “Responsible behavior by each one of us will be fundamental,” Mr. Conte said in a live broadcast. He stressed that all social interactions, from working and shopping to using public transport and attending funerals, would continue to need people to keep a distance of over 3 feet. “If you love Italy, keep your distance,” Mr. Conte said. Manufacturing and construction will reopen May 4 under new rules, followed by shops, museums and other venues on May 18. Restaurants, bars, hairdressers and other services that involve closer interaction are to reopen June 1. Mr. Conte said the government is working on a plan to reopen beaches this summer and schools in September. Starting May 4, Italians will once again be able to visit relatives, go jogging, walk in public parks and take out food from restaurants to eat at home, while always respecting personal-distance rules, Mr. Conte said. But group gatherings, including church services and family reunions, will remain banned for now. “No parties,” Mr. Conte said. Italy’s lockdown, in force across the country since March 10, was the first such shutdown of an entire country in modern times, although it followed a regional lockdown in central China, where the coronavirus outbreak began. The end of the lockdown in Italy would mark a symbolic turning point in the global effort to tame the pandemic— provided the country can sustain its reopening without suffering a second wave of contagion. The greatest fear in Italy is that the rate of infections could rise again if people relax their guard. Some of Italy’s preparations for the next phase of the crisis are lagging behind, including systems for testing, tracing and isolating virus carriers and their close contacts. Italy’s government will require the authorities in every region of the country to report every day on how the reopening is going, Mr. Conte said. The government could halt the reopening and impose fresh restrictions on regions where contagion is reviving, Mr. Conte said. Italy has suffered more than 26,000 coronavirus deaths, according to official figures. The data, though, leave out many thousands of suspected virus victims who were never tested.


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Lingering Lockdown Tests U.K. Leader


Italy Sets A Spring Timetable For Return

speed trains. France sent 183 of those to neighboring countries. The French approach has been helped by the existence of a single, national health-care system, allowing patients and health-care workers to be shifted around the country during the pandemic without major financial or bureaucratic obstacles. Dr. Rose says the U.S. should be prepared to organize large-scale transfers of patients, as France has done. That would be particularly useful for outbreaks happening in more remote areas far from major medical centers, he says. —Matthew Dalton

Developing Nations’ Plans to Loosen Restrictions Fuel Worry Some developing countries are easing restrictions aimed at slowing the spread of the new coronavirus, sparking concern that cases could surge as shops and some industries open to provide desperately needed food and jobs.

Many of these countries— including India, Pakistan, Ghana and South Africa—are encouraged by the relatively low number of infections they have seen compared with global hot spots in China, southern Europe and the U.S. But health specialists worry that the case numbers may underestimate the extent of infections and the countries may be in the early stages of an epidemic that arrived later than in the developed world. Data for Africa’s 54 nations on Sunday showed cases rising to some 27,000, with 1,297 confirmed deaths. That is


By Saeed Shah in Islamabad, Pakistan, and Joe Parkinson in Johannesburg, South Africa

A man on Sunday read Quran verses in Larkana, Pakistan, during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. lower than the number of people who died on one single day, Saturday, in the U.S. Yet the World Health Organization said last week that many African states have worrying upward infection trends and that

the continent could be the next center of the outbreak. Some health experts worry that could be the case with the rest of the developing world, as well. Pakistani authorities al-

lowed some industries, including construction, to reopen a week ago. Pakistan also permitted mosques to reopen Friday, for the start of the holy month of Ramadan. That was against the advice of the Paki-

stan Medical Association, which warned that hospitals are nearing full capacity already. Prime Minister Imran Khan has been among the world leaders most vocal in expressing fears over the developing world’s poor. Many of them survive on day wages and their survival is as threatened by the loss of wages as by coronavirus infection, he has repeatedly said. In Africa, Ghana is to lift a three-week lockdown in its two largest cities, citing improved coronavirus testing and the severe impact of the restrictions on the poor and vulnerable. In the past week the number of new confirmed cases has tapered despite expanded testing to take the national total to 1,550 cases and 11 deaths since the beginning of the outbreak. In South Africa, President Cyril Ramaphosa outlined a five-stage process that will help the economy phase out of lockdown, beginning on May 1, with some businesses returning to work but gathering and

travel remained banned and borders closed. In other developing countries the easing comes even before there has been a clear decrease in the number of new cases. India plans to allow all rural and many urban shops to open while keeping malls closed after new cases reached new records in recent days. This has left even some shop owners concerned. “Allowing all shops to open will only worsen the situation,” said Sumit Popli, who runs a stationery store in New Delhi, questioning even his own decision to reopen on Sunday. “Now other shopkeepers will also become greedy and start opening their shops.” Much of the developing world has seen the coronavirus arrive later than in economically developed areas. Alarmed by the spread seen in other places, they clamped down on human interactions and economic activities earlier, which health officials say is critical to slowing the spread.

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Monday, April 27, 2020 | A9


Rumors Swirl as Kim’s Absence Persists North Korea’s silence about leader’s health amplifies speculation about his condition BY ANDREW JEONG One question swirled among North Korea watchers this weekend—Where is Kim Jong Un?—as the dictator’s unexplained absence stretched past two weeks and Twitter lighted up with speculation about his incapacitation or death. As of late Sunday, there was little information about the third-generation leader’s health.

The guessing game began when Mr. Kim missed the country’s most important holiday on April 15, then ratcheted higher after a South Korean publication reported he had had heart surgery. On Saturday, a Japanese magazine took it a step further, writing that he had been left in a vegetative state after the procedure was botched. The rumors illustrate North Korea’s outsize dependence on a single person for its political stability. The answer to the question of his health holds significant implications for the future of high-stakes nuclear negotiations with the U.S. and the stability of a country on

China’s border. “These persistent rumors suggest that there are concerns that his health could impact his ability to lead the country,” said Jean Lee, a public-policy fellow at the Washington-based Woodrow Wilson Center. “And those concerns are always worth paying attention to with a country like North Korea where the system has been built around the rule of one family.” But the flow of information from the secretive state is so poor, especially when it comes to the health of its leaders, that all longtime experts could do was hypothesize, advise caution and wait.

“This is a typical blackswan scenario,” said Go Myong-hyun, a research fellow at the Asan Institute, a Seoulbased think tank. “Kim Jong Un’s death is a low-probability event. But his death would be a game changer.” Mr. Kim—as well as his father and grandfather, who preceded him in ruling the cloistered state—has a history of unexplained absences. He disappeared for more than a month in 2014 before ultimately reappearing with a cane. He was also out of the public eye for several weeks in 2012 and 2013. Mr. Kim’s father, Kim Jong Il, disappeared in 2008, trigger-

ing rumors of ill health. South Korean officials later learned that the elder Mr. Kim had suffered a stroke, accelerating preparations within the regime for a succession plan. When he did die, in 2011, the world didn’t learn of it for two days. In November 1986, South Korea’s Defense Ministry told reporters that Kim Il Sung, North Korea’s ruler at the time, had been killed, citing broadcasts from loudspeakers at North Korea’s front-line military units on the inter-Korean border. The North’s state media published a report a few days later saying he had greeted Mongolian guests at Pyongyang’s airport.

The Asan Institute’s Mr. Go said the most conspicuous aspect of the current rumor cycle was North Korea’s silence. Mr. Kim was last shown in the country’s state media on April 12, with images of him leading discussions on the new coronavirus pandemic and visiting an air force base. He missed the April 15 public ceremonies marking Kim Il Sung’s birthday. U.S. officials have said they are looking into reports that Mr. Kim may have been incapacitated or worse. Robert Carlin, a former U.S. intelligence official, said there is no credible evidence of anything being wrong with Mr. Kim.


Netanyahu ‘Confident’ U.S. Will Back Plan

Rescuers Recover Bodies of Climbers

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he was confident he will be able to annex large parts of the occupied West Bank this summer, with U.S. support. Speaking to an online gathering of evangelical Christian supporters of Israel, Mr. Netanyahu said President Trump’s Mideast plan envisions turning over Israel’s dozens of settlements, as well as the strategic Jordan Valley, to Israeli control. “A couple of months from now, I’m confident that that pledge will be honored, that we will be able to celebrate another historic moment in the history of Zionism,” Mr. Netanyahu said. Israeli annexation of West Bank territory would be highly controversial, drawing widespread international condemnations and extinguishing hopes of establishing a viable independent Palestinian state alongside Israel. The Palestinians, with international backing, seek the entire West Bank as part of an independent state. They have threatened to cancel existing peace agreements if Mr. Netanyahu moves forward with his plan. —Associated Press

Rescuers recovered the bodies of two South Korean trekkers who had been missing since an avalanche in January buried them in Nepal’s mountains, an official said. An army helicopter flew the bodies—one male and one female—from the Annapurna Trekking Circuit to the city of Pokhara, according to Nepalese army official Maj. Gen. Gokul Bhandari. The body of one of their Nepali guides was recovered on Friday, while another was recovered a few days earlier. An avalanche had buried a total of four South Korean trekkers and three Nepali guides in January. Rescuers spent weeks searching for the bodies, but continuing avalanches and thick layers of snow prevented them from finding them. The warming spring weather eventually melted the snow, exposing the bodies and allowing the rescuers to recover them. A search continues for the two trekkers and one guide who remain missing. —Associated Press

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A DAY AT THE MALL: Police confronted hundreds of pro-democracy protesters at a Hong Kong shopping mall on Sunday. The protest, held in defiance of rules banning public gatherings of more than four people, follows the arrests last week of 15 former lawmakers and activists.


King Abolishes Death Penalty for Minors Saudi Arabia’s King Salman has ordered an end to the

death penalty for crimes committed by minors, a top official said. The decision comes on the heels of another ordering judges to end the practice of flogging, replacing it with jail time, fines

or community service and bringing one of the kingdom’s most controversial forms of public punishment to a close. King Salman’s son and heir, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, is seen as the force be-

hind the kingdom’s loosening of restrictions and its pivot away from ultraconservative interpretations of Islamic law known as Wahhabism, which many in the country still closely adhere to. —Associated Press

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A10 | Monday, April 27, 2020


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Pandemic Brings New Approach

pre-isolation routine that remains intact, she said. She can monitor live feeds from her smartphone. The Bronx Zoo in New York City, which temporarily closed in mid-March, started a “virtual zoo” with live cams featuring sea lions, aquatic birds and lemurs this month. Several of the zoo’s tigers and lions have tested positive for the coronavirus. The cats are recovering, the zoo said. Marjorie Housley, a postdoctoral researcher in Indiana, especially likes a live video from Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo that features red pandas, endangered mammals native to the Himalayas and China. She recently posted a list of more than a dozen animal cams, including naked mole rats, sloths and bats, on Twitter so others could stay entertained while they ride out the pandemic. The animals are “not freaking out like most humans are; in some ways there’s some comfort in that,” said Dr. Housley.

Ratchet Effect

large corporations, but one where there is opportunity for small entrepreneurs to thrive and move up the ladder of success.” As the country moves through and beyond the crisis, there will be a debate about whether renewed government activism ought to come at the national or state level. Governors and state governments were widely seen as more nimble in responding to the coronavirus pandemic at the outset, and have taken on an added prominence that seems likely to persist. Traditionally, Republicans have tended to prefer a federalist approach, which seeks to move government power away from the national government in Washington and out to the governors and the states. Mr. Trump’s sweeping declaration this month that he, as president, has “total authority” to decide when to order governors to loosen social-isolation restrictions and reopen their economies runs directly counter to that traditional conservative mind-set. Though he subsequently backtracked on trying to exercise such powers, the tone he struck was decidedly different from Mr. Reagan’s frequent invocation of the Constitution’s 10th Amendment, which reserves for the states or the people powers not explicitly granted to the federal government. Long before this crisis struck, Mr. Trump had been moving the Republican party away from its Reagan-era embrace of traditional conservative precepts and toward a more populist view of government’s role. That populist philosophy isn’t shy about using government power, or the government’s checkbook, to the benefit of working-class Americans. Thus, in the midst of the crisis, the Trump administration declared that the federal government would pay the coronavirus health bills of any Americans without health insurance —and reimburse health-care providers at the rates paid by the Medicare health program for the elderly. Moreover, in direct contradiction to traditional Republican antipathy to deficit spending and a growing national debt, Mr. Trump has explicitly argued in favor of borrowing, at a time of low interest rates, to finance a new, $2 trillion bill to rebuild and improve the nation’s infrastructure. Even before the crisis, there was a push for a larger national effort to build out a 5G wireless network. Mr. Bannon argues that voters will see a powerful central government as essential as the U.S. moves into a long-term era of confrontation with China, where the coronavirus originated. A broad period of tension, he said, “is going to change the focus of government.” In the long run, the impact of the crisis may depend on how quickly or how slowly the economy bounces back. Voters’ reaction may break not along ideological or personality lines, but rather in favor of more competent government at all levels—government that efficiently builds stockpiles of needed supplies for use in a national crisis, for instance, and responds quickly and efficiently when one strikes. “The way the pendulum swings, the quieter, competent leaders might be more in fashion,” said nonpartisan pollster J. Ann Selzer.

Government spending rises during crises and tends not to drop back to precrisis levels. Federal net outlays as a percentage of GDP 28%


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Source: Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis via St. Louis Fed


because it was caused by government orders to shut down businesses and public places to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, which means aggressive and expensive government action is justified to rectify the resulting problems. “Because government action is the cause of what is going on, this action is much more acceptable in response, in Republican ranks,” said Eric Cantor, formerly the second-ranking Republican in the House.

Deregulatory twist


President Reagan spoke of the government as ‘the problem’ in his inauguration speech, top, in 1981. A line for new government parks jobs, above, in Cleveland during the Great Depression. Americans along the way. Similarly, Scott Reed, senior political strategist at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, is skeptical Republicans will continue to embrace big government in the same way they do now. “The size of the government is going to make Washington more and more relevant to the business community,” he said. “But long term, I think the right of center, the Republican Party, is going to want to roll that back some.”


Continued from Page One just not relevant.” The Great Depression produced both a bigger social safety net and a host of new government programs, World War II led to the creation of a unified Defense Department and the Cold War spawned an interstate highway system. In just the past two decades, the 9/11 terrorist attacks produced new consolidated agencies to handle homeland security and national intelligence, and the 2008 financial meltdown led to a broad range of new actions by the Federal Reserve that are being replicated and expanded now. Today, both parties and a vast majority of voters have come together behind a broad and aggressive response at both the federal and state level, and have accepted a sea of new red ink at a time the federal budget deficit already was heading toward a trillion dollars annually. Mr. Trump, more a populist activist than a traditional conservative, has enthusiastically backed that spending, ordered the construction of pop-up hospitals, used his authority to order companies to produce supplies, called for an additional federal infrastructure program and offered an expansive definition of presidential power, including the power to strip away regulations and bureaucracy in some instances. In a recent Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll, voters of both political parties said by a 2-to-1 margin that they approved of the expansion of government’s role in the economy to meet the crisis. Oren Cass, who leads American Compass, a new organization devoted to revising conservative views on economic policy, argued that “one lesson we can and should learn from all this is that you can’t just flip a switch on strong, effective government when you need it. Just as you can’t get rid of the Defense Department in times of peace and then reconstitute it from scratch when attacked, you can’t push for the smallest possible government in normal times and expect to be ready with a competent response in an emergency.” At the same time, while there was consensus behind government activism as the crisis struck, a loud and angry backlash now is emerging over whether the needle has moved too far, particularly on the state level. Protesters have taken to the streets in recent days, saying that political leaders, especially governors, have overstepped their authority by closing down the economy and putting American jobs and livelihoods at risk. “We were already headed toward a conversation about whether we’re going to have a socialist country or a capitalist country,” said Jenny Beth Martin, co-founder of the Tea Party Patriots, an organization that sprang up amid grass-roots anger over government bailouts in the 2008-09 financial crisis. “When we get past the virus, we’re going to have that debate in a new way.” She and others believe a government overreaction has taken shape in recent weeks, hurting many average

“butterfly jungle” enclosure, where it said viewers could see thousands of butterflies and up to 22 exotic bird species. The zoo now has more than 10 video cams, including koalas, burrowing owls, and its most popular, polar bears. The zoo has run videos since the 1990s, when its panda cam went live. Its site now shows “reruns” because the panda, which was on loan, has gone back to China. The animals have multiple cameras on them, so it’s up to volunteers to monitor the feeds and pick the most exciting moments. One volunteer, Jamie Rose, a 55-year-old who works at a university, caught a female polar bear rolling around in the dirt. Ms. Rose also works on the baboon video, the third-most popular, and frequently sees the primates climbing atop a rock structure. “You hold your breath wondering if they’re going to fall, and they never do,” she said. Volunteering on the videos is one of the few parts of her


Continued from Page One mon ground with captive animals as the pandemic has forced people inside. Living space is limited, with some apartments not much bigger than a seal enclosure. Food is delivered to the door. Family spats break out. Chicago’s Shedd Aquarium last month began posting edited videos of its three rockhopper penguins wandering around its newly empty galleries. The videos, which among other things show the penguins staring at beluga whales, stingrays and dolphins, have been collectively seen online 48 million times, the aquarium says. The posts’ popularity hatched ideas for new install-

things,” said really nice to Meghan Curran, have in the backthe aquarium’s ground. It’s a litsenior vice presitle bit like a fish dent of markettank.” ing, sales and The zoo adguest relations. vised viewers the The videos “resothree Sumatran nate because tiger cubs are they’re so real most active and authentic. around their 9:30 You’re thinking a.m. and 2:15 about what’s happ.m. feeding pening in spaces times. Over at you’re not in anythe elephant enmore.” closure, which inZoos and cludes a calf with aquariums, closed his mom, one reCold comfort because of the cent view showed pandemic, scramthe pachyderms bled to put videos online so with their backsides to the housebound humans could camera, huddled near a fence. stay on top of the action—if Nonetheless, in the first 24 there is any. hours of streaming, Mr. Kerr “The tigers are great when said the videos got more than they’re out, but like all cats 100,000 views. The zoo later they do a bit of sleeping as added meerkats and otters to well,” said Cameron Kerr, head video offerings. of the agency that runs SydThe San Diego Zoo says ney’s Taronga Zoo, which this traffic on its live videos is up month began offering live vid- nearly 1000% since shelter-ineos of tigers, seals and ele- place orders went into effect. phants. “I find the seal cam is It recently launched one of a


Zoo Cams Offer Solace

ments, including videos of the penguins nesting. Hope Gainey, 51, signed up for Twitter notifications from the aquarium’s account so she wouldn’t miss any videos. She shows the short clips to her kids and her mom, who laughed so hard at penguin antics that she cried. “If you can forget what’s going on for 30 seconds, it’s great,” said Ms. Gainey. Among her favorites: the penguins hopping up and down the stairs outside the aquarium’s entrance, and a video in which handlers provide the penguins with straw to build a nest. “One of the penguins knew, ‘I want that piece,’ ” she said. “It was like pick-up sticks. The rest went flying.” Ms. Gainey, who lives in Ocala, Fla., said she has developed a fondness for one penguin in particular, a 32-yearold named Wellington. Another Twitter user asked if Wellington is single. Answer: He is. People are “looking for good news, looking for happy

Crisis Spending Government spending rises amid crisis, and tends not to drop back to precrisis levels— at least not for a while. Economists call the tendency the “ratchet effect.” And while there is academic debate over its extent, a look back shows that federal spending as a percentage of the overall economy has never fallen back to its level before 9/11. The ratchet effect may be more likely in the aftermath of this crisis because of structural problems layered over crisis spending: an aging population requiring more social services, aged infrastructure that needs updating, and the costs of servicing a historically large level of federal debt. It is too early in this crisis to predict exactly how the size and shape of the government will be affected in the long run. For now, perhaps the clearest impact has simply been a shift in the public’s attitude toward government institutions, which have been much maligned in recent decades. Former Iowa Democratic Gov. Tom Vilsack, Mr. Obama’s longest-serving cabinet secre-

tary, said he expects that the “chants” he’s heard for the past 40 years about government not mattering and being the problem are likely to fade. “This particular circumstance shows the importance of government at every level and the need for all branches to be better coordinated,” he said. “We’ve had people denigrate people in the post office and federal workers. Well, who are the people working today and putting themselves on the line?” On the left, the crisis already is putting new energy behind calls for a nationalized healthcare system. Sen. Bernie Sanders has argued that “the pandemic puts an even brighter spotlight on the shortcomings of the current corporate-run system,” and his followers are pushing the argument. The crisis is “expediting” a move toward a more progressive Democratic Party agenda, said John Della Volpe, the polling director for RealClear Opin-

ion Research and Harvard University’s Institute of Politics. Others are skeptical the crisis will fuel something so dramatic as Medicare for All, the progressive proposal that got so much debate in the Democratic primary race. “Clearly, inside the party, that discussion will continue,” said Jim Messina, a Democratic strategist who ran Mr. Obama’s 2012 campaign. “I don’t think it affects the views of swing voters.” On the Republican side, the big government response in the current crisis stands in stark contrast to the view articulated by the party’s longtime hero, the late President Reagan, in his first presidential inaugural address in 1981. Then, amid an earlier dark economic downturn, he declared: “In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem.” Many Republicans argue that the current economic crisis is fundamentally different

Christopher DeMuth, distinguished fellow at the Hudson Institute, a nonpartisan think tank influential among conservatives, has argued that, by clearing away regulatory hurdles for private companies seeking answers for the virus, Mr. Trump has actually given a conservative, deregulatory twist to the bout of government activism now under way. In the same vein, Sara Fagen, political director in President George W. Bush’s White House, said that in its response to the health crisis “government was clunky and slow, but companies quickly turned it on, so there is some argument for free enterprise.” In addition, Republicans have been willing to embrace the recently enacted, $2 trillion economic rescue plan because a main feature was the Paycheck Protection Program, which provides relief to small businesses. Republicans consider small businesses the economic force more compatible with their political philosophy than the big banks that were the main beneficiary of the 2008 rescue package. “Why is it that Republicans are willing to defend PPP?” asked Karl Rove, chief political strategist for Mr. Bush. “Because it serves the interests of their constituency, small businesses. Their view of a modern society is not one dominated by

New Agreement There is bipartisan support for the government's expanded role during the coronavirus crisis, unlike during the recovery from the financial crisis. 2009 approval* Republicans Democrats

26% 78%

2020 approval Republicans




*March 2009 Gallup Poll Source: WSJ/NBC News telephone poll of 900 registered voters conducted from April 13-15; margin of error +/– 3.27 pct. pts.:

Protesting stay-at-home orders in Olympia, Wash., this month.

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Monday, April 27, 2020 | A10A

School Districts Prepare for Cutbacks

Officials warn state aid could fall as much as 20% as revenue drops amid pandemic BY JIMMY VIELKIND

School districts around New York are struggling to develop budgets for the coming academic year with the prospect of cuts in state aid as a result of the coronavirus crisis. Superintendents and school-board members say they are weighing painful options, including teacher layoffs and program eliminations. Some are considering proposals to raise property taxes above the state’s normal 2% cap on annual increases. All are assembling spending plans with an asterisk next to an important revenue stream:

the amount of money allocated by Albany. State officials warned Sunday that state school aid could fall as much as 20%, as revenue declines as a result of the coronavirus-related restrictions. “You can’t spend what you don’t have,” Gov. Andrew Cuomo, a Democrat, said last Monday. New York state lawmakers approved a $173 billion budget in early April that included $27.65 billion for education aid in the coming school year— roughly the same amount as the current year. That number has increased each year by about 4%, or roughly $1 billion, during most of Mr. Cuomo’s tenure. The new state budget gives Mr. Cuomo’s administration the power to reduce spending if revenues don’t materialize. The first period to determine

adjustments concludes at the end of this month. The coronavirus brought revenues $13.3 billion below their projected levels and will require the state to reduce its assistance to school districts and local governments by $8.2 billion, according to a financial plan released Saturday. New York State Budget Director Robert Mujica said it was still unclear how much of that would fall on school districts, but they should expect a cut of up to 20%. Schools and nonessential businesses are closed until at least May 15. Mr. Cuomo said Friday that it was still too early to determine whether any schools would reopen again this academic year. But districts must adopt budgets before school fiscal years begin on July 1. Decisions about what courses to

offer and how many teachers to hire are being made now. In most of the state, residents vote on school budgets in midMay; because of the virus, those votes will be pushed until June, though exact details haven’t been set. Even the flat allocation has prompted cutbacks. New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio recently gave a budget update that proposed a hiring freeze for the city’s Department of Education, decreased funding for professional development and reduced enrichment programs. The school district in Troy, an upstate city of about 50,000 people, on Wednesday proposed eliminating 25 jobs, including all 23 reading specialists in its elementary schools. District Superintendent John Carmello said he hoped

class sizes could be kept to fewer than 20 students and that regular classroom teachers could handle the load. He said it was hard to fathom a further 20% aid reduction, which would be about $9 million of Troy’s $140 million budget. “It’s crushing, and no fault of anybody’s except for this crazy situation we’re in,” Mr. Carmello said. In Niskayuna, a white-collar suburb of Schenectady, Superintendent Cosimo Tangorra Jr. froze his own salary and said the district was looking to eliminate 22 positions next year. He said the school board is considering a budget that increases property taxes beyond the tax cap, which would normally need to be approved by 60% of voters. Robert Lowry, deputy director for the New York State

Council of School Superintendents, said it is unclear when and how budget votes will be held, or if they will even be held at all. “Everyone is essentially on hold,” he said. Mr. Cuomo said Sunday that the state hasn’t yet developed a plan for budget votes. Small cities and rural districts are more heavily dependent on state aid than suburban areas with healthier tax bases, and more susceptible to across-the-board cuts, said Neil O’Brien, superintendent of the Port Byron Central School District in Cayuga County. Mr. O’Brien said he didn’t believe voters in his district would approve, or could afford, a property-tax increase of much more than 1%. He and other officials called for more federal assistance to prevent an additional state cut.

A Burst Of Beauty In Brooklyn


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Every spring, the Brooklyn Botanic Garden celebrates cherry-blossom season with a weekend festival called Sakura Matsuri, named after similar events held in Japan. The festival draws up to 70,000 people and features everything from tea ceremonies to musical performances. But its true purpose is to let New Yorkers take in the garden’s 200-plus cherry-blossom trees in all their vibrant, fleeting glory. The festival this year, scheduled for this past weekend, was canceled, another event taken off the calendar because of the coronavirus pandemic. And the garden is closed to the public otherwise during the health crisis. But that hasn’t stopped the cherry-blossom trees from going about their business. If anything, some might argue that nature’s display is all the more powerful without the people in the picture. —Charles Passy

STATE STREET | By Jimmy Vielkind

Special-Needs Students Sanders Supporters Argue Adjust to Remote Lessons Against Canceling Primary



When New York City special-needs teacher Marie Cornicelli learned in March that the city’s 1.1 million publicschool students would be migrating to remote learning, she expected the foray into “crazy, unknown and unfamiliar territory” to be a difficult one. “I wondered if my students would be able to do the work well at home with the level of support that they’re used to,” said Ms. Cornicelli, who has been an educator for 15 years. Now, with a month of remote teaching behind her due to the coronavirus outbreak, the behavior-management specialist at Staten Island prekindergarten-to-eighth-grade school P 373R, which has an enrollment of 640 specialneeds students, says the transition has been almost seamless, thanks to careful execution and strong parental involvement. “When you work with students with disabilities…you work with the families, the siblings and the home-care givers,” she said. “It takes a team.” Ms. Cornicelli’s strategies have helped her five students thrive in the virtual classroom, including adapted lessons, online social and emotionallearning programs, face-toface Google Meet sessions, and daily parent-teacher communications. “We serve students with autism, intellectually disabled, emotionally disturbed—a lot of health impairments,” she said. “So when we go into a classroom, we can’t just teach one lesson, we have to teach each student, and it can be challenging.” Ms. Cornicelli started by giving parents learning packets, including a set of printed out photos for the parents of a nonverbal fourth-grader who uses visual pictures to communicate. “She’ll hand her parents the picture of water and the parent or caregiver then knows she wants water,” she said.



Thomas Soto, a 5-year-old with autism, gets breaks and rewards to help him cope, his mom says.

Since the child is home more often, the parents want to ensure that she can communicate effectively with them. The majority of students work on individual lessons with their parents, but Ms. Cornicelli also brings the class together over Google Meet. For example, she created a new assignment to replace a handson activity that teaches skills such as following directions and interacting with peers. “They have a coffee cart in the school, so they go around every Friday and sell coffee,” she said. Now, students have “newsroom” jobs they carry out over Google Meet and give reports on the weather and the news; another is a food critic, and another does a word of the day. “There are just so many different ways to teach.” Another lesson called Sink or Float allowed students to see each other and parents to interact with Ms. Cornicelli. “We each had a bucket of water in front of us and some household items, and we each took turns testing out the items.” Ms. Cornicelli’s biggest challenge has been the disruption of her students’ daily classroom routines, since they

thrive on “structure, repetition, and consistency, and it is not their norm to sit at the kitchen table.” Thomas Soto, a 5-year-old kindergartner with autism, is adjusting gradually. “I’m his mom, so he’s not as open to doing certain things,” said Jill Soto, 37. He is like, ‘You’re not supposed to be doing this. It’s supposed to be my teacher.’ ” She said Thomas loves to see the faces of his teachers on the computer screen, reading books like “Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?” Ms. Soto uses books, YouTube and Google Classroom to help him with assignments. “We take a lot of breaks and there are a lot of rewards in between, just so he doesn’t have a breakdown,” she said. To help students manage anxiety, Ms. Cornicelli uses the Rethink Ed platform, which offers online tools for social and emotional learning, since “some students with disabilities don’t have those skills yet and we just have to build on it in practice.” The platform lets students and families or caregivers watch videos, she said. “For example, there’s a little purple guy, and he says, ‘I’m feeling sad today. What can I do? I could go ask mom for a hug. Or sometimes when I get mad—instead of yelling—I could take five deep breaths.’ ” Ms. Cornicelli said P 373R parents are well-positioned for this transition, since they always have attended training and work with teachers on lesson plans for their specialneeds children. Teachers and parents also communicate daily, either through writing in-progress notebooks, or over email or phone calls. “We’re very fortunate that we have the systems already set up in place in our school to foster the school-home connection,” she said. “I’m not saying that it’s perfect…But they are just a little bit better equipped because we do have that training constantly.”

Bernie Sanders’s supporters are urging New York’s election officials not to cancel the June presidential primary, even though the Vermont senator has suspended his campaign for the Democratic nomination to face President Trump. Democratic commissioners of the state Board of Elections will meet Monday to consider a resolution that would scrap the primary. Mr. Sanders endorsed former Vice President Joe Biden on April 13, but Mr. Sanders said when he suspended his campaign that he hoped to keep amassing delegates to influence the Democratic Party’s platform and rules. Mr. Biden has won 1,305 delegates to the party’s convention, compared with Mr. Sanders’s 939. New York has 274 delegates in play. Sanders backers say canceling the election would send an exclusionary message at a time when party leaders should be focused on uniting Democrats behind Mr. Biden. “This could be a public-relations disaster for the party,” said George Albro, co-chair of the New York Progressive Action Network, which supports Mr. Sanders. A lawyer for the Sanders campaign asked the commissioners not to cancel the primary. “Senator Sanders has collaborated with state parties, the national party and the Biden campaign, to strengthen the Democrats by aligning the party’s progressive and moderate wings. His removal from the ballot would hamper those efforts, to the detriment of the party in the general election,” wrote the lawyer, Malcolm Seymour, in a letter. New York had planned to hold its presidential primary on Tuesday, but Gov. Andrew

Cuomo moved it to June 23— the scheduled date for primaries for Congress, state and local offices—as a result of the new coronavirus. A budget provision enacted earlier this month lets the Democratic commissioners on the state Board of Elections, Douglas Kellner and Andy Spano, remove presidential candidates from the ballot who have made public statements suspending their campaigns and effectively cancel the primary. Republican election officials in New York canceled their presidential primary after challengers to Mr. Trump failed to submit the required slate of delegates. Mr. Kellner said Friday that he believed that there was no need for the primary to go forward because the party has settled on Mr. Biden as its standard-bearer. Holding a primary would unnecessarily

Gov. Cuomo earlier pushed back the vote to June 23 due to the virus crisis. put election workers and voters at risk, Mr. Kellner said. Mr. Spano said he had been leaning toward canceling the primary last week, but had heard from a large number of Mr. Sanders’s supporters and was now unsure. It is unclear what effect canceling the contest would have on the number of delegates the state can send to the Democratic National Committee’s nominating convention in August. New York’s primary was already in violation of a DNC regulation that requires voting to wrap up by early June; a DNC spokeswoman said any changes to how New York elects or allocates its dele-

gates “would need to be approved by the DNC’s Rules and Bylaws Committee.” Mr. Albro said New York state party leaders, including Mr. Cuomo and state Democratic Committee Chairman Jay Jacobs, who have been supportive of Mr. Biden, would choose all the delegates in the absence of a vote. Our Revolution Chairman Larry Cohen, whose group backs Mr. Sanders, said a cancellation would be an “incredible suppression of voting rights” and vowed to challenge any slate of convention delegates from New York that didn’t have input from the Sanders campaign. On Sunday, Mr. Cuomo declined to offer an opinion on canceling the primary. Mr. Jacobs said last week that he hoped the Sanders campaign would ask the board to take itself off the ballot. A spokesman for Mr. Biden’s campaign didn’t return an email seeking comment. While Mr. Cuomo has issued orders to encourage New Yorkers to vote by absentee ballot, Mr. Jacobs said he worried that in-person voting would spread the virus. If the presidential primary is canceled, some upstate counties where other offices aren’t contested wouldn’t need to hold an election at all. Either way, officials and experts said they expect turnout would be lower without a presidential contest. “Our motivation right now is to avoid what happened in Wisconsin, where we in this situation are holding a primary that asks poll workers, many of them senior citizens, to risk their health for no particular purpose,” Mr. Jacobs said. “In New York we’ve stopped all nonessential business. I think there’s a good argument that you shouldn’t conduct a nonessential primary.” [email protected]

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A10B | Monday, April 27, 2020


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Plan for Patient Recovery Home Sparks Backlash

sites fell through, she said. “It was probably the hardest conversation I’ve been involved in, and I’ve been a nurse for 40 years,” said Ms. Cass. “I wish we weren’t first,” said state Rep. Maria Horn, a Democrat who represents Sharon, of hosting a recovery center. “But I can’t assert we shouldn’t have been on the list at all because this is a seriously urgent situation.” Employees at the Sharon Health Care Center are worried about getting sick them-

selves and spreading it to their families, some staff members say. Access to personal protective equipment, particularly N95 masks, has been among the biggest concerns, these staff members said. Supervisors at the facility have discouraged the certified nursing assistants who help feed and clean the residents from wearing N95 masks, these staffers said. The Athena spokesman said the company continues to work to secure personal protective

equipment so that every employee has what they need. “We require the use of PPE by any staff member in contact with Covid-19 patients,” the spokesman said. The state Department of Public Health is also providing the Sharon nursing home with personal protective equipment, and state health officials plan to make frequent unannounced visits to verify that there is adequate staffing to provide the necessary care, Ms. Cass said.

Marshall Miles, a local radio host who was born and raised in the town, said he knows many people are anxious about the recovery center. “Everyday I get calls from employees [at the nursing home] saying this is a death sentence for us,” Mr. Marshall said. “They are petrified.” Deborah Moore, who lives in Sharon, said she has accepted the state plan, but remains worried. “I’m concerned for everyone. It’s our entire community,” Ms. Moore said.

MTA Completes Overhaul Of L Train Subway Tunnel




Staying home saves lives.

A project to repair a New York City subway tunnel connecting Brooklyn and Manhattan has been completed ahead of schedule, despite the coronavirus pandemic, officials said Sunday. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo swooped in last year to upend longstanding plans by New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority to close a section of the L train line for repairs for 15 months. That stretch of line, between Brooklyn and the West Side of Manhattan, carried 275,000 daily riders on an average weekday. At the time, there were fears its closure could cause crowding on alternate subway lines, flood streets with cars, add significant time to commutes and hurt local businesses.

Mr. Cuomo, who controls the MTA, embraced an alternate plan suggested by a panel of experts led by the deans of engineering schools at Columbia and Cornell universities. The new proposal used different construction

Work began in April 2019 and the repairs were finished ahead of schedule.

techniques, which allowed the line to remain open during the daytime and to operate with reduced frequency on nights and weekends. Work began in April 2019 with little disruption in the city. Mr. Cuomo said at an unre-

lated news conference Sunday that he had pressed ahead with the alternative proposal despite significant opposition. “It opens today and the proof is in the pudding,” he said. An MTA spokeswoman said that, with the repairs complete, the frequency of overnight and weekend service on the L train will increase. The MTA has reduced subway, bus and commuter-rail service because of the coronavirus. Subway ridership has plummeted since the governor and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio closed many businesses and asked people to stay home as much as possible. Currently, fewer than 500,000 riders use the subway system each day, compared with 5.5 million daily riders before the coronavirus pandemic began.


For more information, visit




Mayor Promises Plan Reopening Won’t Be To Help City Rebuild Soon, Murphy Says

Two Deaths Treated As Murder-Suicide

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said Sunday he hopes to have a road map by June 1 on how to rebuild the city after the coronavirus threat subsides. The mayor, a Democrat, said at a news conference that city leaders he has invited to help plan the city’s recovery should give him the road map by then. He said a full rebuild will take about 20 months. He also said the latest statistics on people being treated for Covid-19 continued to be stable or decline. The number of people in the city’s hospital intensivecare units had dropped from 785 to 768. Mr. de Blasio said the city can’t begin reopening until decreases continue for 10 to 14 days. He said such a fall would signal it was time for the first steps in opening up. “The health indicators have to give us the all-clear,” he said. —Associated Press

The deaths of a woman and a man in New Jersey are being investigated as an apparent murder-suicide, authorities said. Jersey City police found an unresponsive man in the Hudson River on Sunday morning, the Hudson County prosecutor’s office said. The 37-year-old man was pronounced dead at the scene just before 8 a.m. Sunday, prosecutors said. Officers who went to his residence found an unresponsive woman with apparent upper body trauma, prosecutors said. Kothari Garima, 35, who also lived in the home, was pronounced dead at the scene, prosecutors said. Prosecutors said “it appears at this time that these deaths are the result of a murder-suicide” but the final determination is pending the findings of the regional medical examiner’s office. —Associated Press

The governor of New Jersey said he believes the state is “several weeks away” from taking the first steps to reopen following the coronavirus outbreak. Gov. Phil Murphy said on NBC’s “Meet the Press” on Sunday that fatalities associated with the virus “continue to be significant each and every day.” He said the positive test curve has flattened and hospitalizations, intensive care and ventilator use have started to come down. “Those are good signs, but we’re not out of the woods yet,” the governor said. “I think we’re several weeks away…The mandate to stay at home and stay away from each other is still very much in effect until we can break the back of this curve.” The state health department posted information Sunday that 5,938 deaths are now associated with the virus. —Associated Press



Staff at Sharon Health Care Center, a nursing home in a rural Connecticut town that now houses recovering Covid-19 patients. Below, an overflow area outside Sharon Hospital. Deborah Moore, who lives in Sharon, carries a flag to show gratitude for health-care workers.


The rural town of Sharon, Conn., is the state’s first test of a plan to relocate older nursing-home residents recovering from the new coronavirus. More than 50 patients recovering from the virus who were discharged from hospitals in cities such as Hartford and Danbury moved into Sharon Health Care Center, the town’s 88-bed nursing home, this past week. To make room, the center moved out all of its regular residents, except for eight who tested positive for Covid-19. Connecticut has some of the highest Covid-19 case rates in the U.S., with 647 cases per 100,000 residents compared with 262 cases per 100,000 residents nationally. Most of Connecticut’s cases are concentrated in the counties of Fairfield, adjacent to New York state, New Haven and Hartford. Sharon, population 2,700, sits among rolling hills and farmland on the border with New York state. Many New York City residents also own weekend homes in the town. In Litchfield County, which includes Sharon, there have been 751 cases as of Thursday. Sharon has had 11 cases. Its top official, First Selectman Brent Colley, and other residents disagree with the state’s plan to put the recovery unit in their community, which they say has minimal health-care infrastructure. In addition to the nursing home, there is a 78-bed hospital. Volunteers run the fire department and ambulance squad. “It’s dangerous to increase your numbers and spread your numbers across the entire state,” Mr. Colley said, referring to case numbers. The number of Covid-19 patients in town was flat, he said, adding, “Why spike us?” Athena Health Care Sys-

tems, the nursing-home company that owns and operates the Sharon Health Care Center, said it viewed its role as helping with the pandemic. “We wanted to care for patients in need, alleviate the incredible strain being placed on hospitals, and do all we can to ensure that as many patients as possible are able to be treated during this pandemic,” a spokesman said. “We have taken extensive steps to protect our residents and staff during this time.” The Sharon Health Care Center is part of a broader strategy by the state to create at least nine recovery facilities for older Covid-19 patients after they are discharged from the hospital. The Sharon nursing home along with another facility in Bridgeport, both owned and operated by Athena Health Care Systems, were the first in the state to open. The company is also reopening closed nursing-home facilities in Torrington and Meriden for this purpose. David Grabowski, a professor of health-care policy at Harvard Medical School, has advocated for the use of Covid-19 recovery centers to free up hospital beds. It is preferable to use closed nursing homes or otherwise empty facilities, he said, because research shows that moving long-term nursing home residents is associated with negative health outcomes. “Nursing-home staff do many things well, but I don’t know that infection control has been something that has been emphasized a lot,” Dr. Grabowski said. Barbara Cass, branch chief for health-care quality and safety for the Connecticut Department of Public Health, said the decision to move residents out of nursing homes wasn’t made lightly. The state pursued the plan after other potential

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Monday, April 27, 2020 | A11





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Your Video Therapist Will See You Now

Sessions have gone virtual amid the pandemic, raising new challenges that some teenagers who had refused to come to in-person therapy with their families are now joining the video sessions. “They come to get something from the refrigerator, they sit down and participate a little bit,” she says. Some psychiatrists say that cancellations and no-shows have plummeted. Bruce J. Schwartz says the no-show rate at the Montefiore Medical Center psychiatry outpatient practice in New York has dropped from 25% to 30% of visits to almost nothing. “The fact that so many people are home, it’s really very efficient,” says Dr. Schwartz, professor and deputy chair of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Montefiore and president of the American Psychiatric Association. Many mental health providers have been offering some video visits for years. But government restric-

tions and payment issues have hampered their growth, says Jay Shore, a psychiatrist and professor at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus and chair of the American Psychiatric Association’s telepsychiatry committee. In response to the pandemic, last month the Trump administration suspended rules that largely limited Medicare coverage of telemental health to rural areas and barred patients from receiving coverage for video visits in their home. In a shift, many state Medicaid programs are now paying for telephone-only mental health treatment. Also, many states have temporarily dropped rules requiring that mental health providers be licensed in the same state where their patients live. Private health insurers such as Anthem and Aetna are temporarily waiving all copays for telehealth visits, includ-


D.C.-based Mr. Suchy, the chapter manager at Active Minds, a nonprofit mental health advocacy group with chapters on about 550 college campuses. But there’s also been a learning curve. During his first video session, Mr. Suchy left his second computer monitor on and found himself distracted by a document that needed to be sent to a colleague and many unread Slack messages. Before his next visit, he made sure to turn that monitor off. He also has found the lack of separation between work and therapy jarring. “I’ll have a meeting with my supervisor and the next minute I’m in therapy,” says Mr. Suchy. So now he takes 15 minutes before his therapy appointment to listen to music and “have a little space to rewire my brain to be in the right mode” for his session. Ms. Hanson says she’s finding

In Anxious Times, The Garden Is a Refuge JESSICA WALLANS copes with the anxiety and cabin fever from the coronavirus pandemic by heading outdoors to her vegetable bed. She and her 3½-year-old son Jasper “are in the garden at least two times a day,” Ms. Wallans says. “It has become our place, where Jasper can get dirty and shovel rocks. For me, tending to plants and watching the spinach seedlings grow has become an increasingly therapeutic act.” The lockdown has sparked a new appreciation for the benefits of gardening. Parents looking to tend neglected corners of the yard—while keeping their children occupied for a precious 20 minutes at a time—are discovering the vegetable patch. “We’ve all had to hit the pause button and get away from our screens,” says Bridget Behe, horticultural marketing professor at Michigan State University in East Lansing, Mich. “Getting your hands in the soil, planting seeds, watching things grow, tasting edible plants you’ve grown is all sensory. It’s emotionally gratifying.” Sharing that with children can not only teach biological concepts but also can be a bonding experience, she says. Many members of AmericanHort, a Columbus, Ohio-based trade group representing greenhouse growers, nurseries and retailers, posted record-setting March sales, spokeswoman Mary Beth Cowardin says. Home Depot, Lowe’s and other big chains say it

is too early to report sales that may have been affected by the pandemic. However, as people working from home tackle their todo lists, “one of the emerging projects has been planting seeds for at-home fruit and vegetable gardens,” according to Lowe’s spokeswoman Amy Allison. Shrub Bucket, of Ithaca, N.Y., which delivers plants to 17 states, says it had 2,023 orders last month compared with 57 in March of last year. “Any time there’s an economic downturn, gardening goes up,” says Heidi Mortensen, who co-founded the online business in 2015. Westgrove, Pa.based Bushel and Berry says blueberry, raspberry and blackberry bushes sold during the first quarter at a clip of 1,200 a week, up from 500 a week during the same period last year. “We’ve already sold out,” says manager Layci Gragnani. Seed company Renee’s Garden of Felton, Calif., says Monday-morning orders have topped 2,000 in recent weeks, up from around 300 in a typical spring. Normally, an online order is fulfilled within a day, but the staff is so backed up, fulfillment now takes seven working days, says founder Renee Shepherd.






n the weeks since marriage and family therapist Shelley Hanson moved her sessions to video calls because of the Covid-19 pandemic, some of her clients—many of whom are sheltering-in-place with family members—have struggled to find private space to talk. Some couples have hidden out in their cars. A few had therapy from their bedroom closets. Some couples in counseling “have kids who would love to listen in and know what’s going on,” says Ms. Hanson, who practices in Tigard, Ore. “You have to get kind of creative.” Privacy is just one issue that has cropped up since nearly all of outpatient mental health treatment has moved online. Over the course of just a few weeks in March, psychiatrists, psychologists and other therapists mostly stopped in-person meetings with patients. They’ve scrambled to adopt new video platforms, tweak therapy approaches and keep up with quickly changing regulations and insurance rules meant—at least temporarily—to make telehealth more accessible. Therapists and clients alike are grappling with everything from technical glitches to interruptions from pets. Some studies have found that video mental health assessments and therapy can be as effective as in-person treatment. But there’s less research on some types of digital treatment happening now, like group therapy and couples counseling. In recent weeks, Mary Alvord, a psychologist in Chevy Chase, Md., has trained around 10,000 mental health providers on how best to deliver treatment online via webinars for the National Register of Health Service Psychologists and other organizations. And companies that solely do digital mental health say they are seeing increased demand. Ginger, which provides chat-based mental health services to employees of other companies, says its number of “active users” in a recent week was 88% higher compared with the average week from August 2019 to January 2020. Talkspace, which connects users to therapists via video and text, says it has seen a 65% rise in demand. As the pandemic grinds on, the company is seeing people’s concerns change: Initially, many users had anxiety about the virus and their health, says Neil Leibowitz, the company’s chief medical officer. That has shifted to worries about finances. More recently, relationship issues have come to the fore. “People aren’t used to spending so much time together,” Dr. Leibowitz says. Robyn Suchy, 27, says there are some upsides to having his weekly appointments with his therapist via video. “I don’t have to travel a half-hour. I can get back to work right away,” says the Washington,

ing psychiatry and psychotherapy. Not all patients want to make the move to video visits. Some therapists say a portion of their clients have stopped therapy until they can resume in-person appointments. Paule McKenna opted to pass on video calls with her therapist, saying she thought having to see her own image would be too distracting. “When I’m talking about myself, I want to focus,” says Ms. McKenna, a 60-year-old former makeup artist in Palm Desert, Calif. “I don’t want to look at myself.” Ms. McKenna is doing her sessions via phone for now. Some conditions and patients are more challenging to treat via video. Rachel Busman, senior director of the Anxiety Disorders Center at the Child Mind Institute in New York, treats children as young as 3 with selective mutism, a disorder where children fail to speak in social situations. The therapy is often done with groups of children and counselors to provide a lot of social interaction and opportunities for speaking, and is usually hands on: Counselors ask questions to prompt children to talk and reward them with stickers and prizes. Now Dr. Busman’s program is running the groups on a version of Zoom for health care professionals. To make the cacophony of group online interaction with a dozen preschoolers and counselors manageable, the Child Mind therapists often break the big group into smaller twosomes or threesomes. And in lieu of physical stickers, during a recent session one counselor drew a star on an index card and held it up to the screen when a child spoke. Anne Marie Albano, a professor of medical psychology in psychiatry at Columbia University Irving Medical Center in New York, runs group therapy programs for children and young adults with social anxiety disorder. Pre-pandemic, the groups would order food at restaurants, approach strangers and role play talking to teachers, all “exposures” meant to elicit anxiety and teach them how to better handle it. Dr. Albano and her colleagues are modifying exposures to make them doable via video. To work on handling embarrassment, for example, she’ll send an email to a participant instructing them to “mime or act out what I’m sending,” she says. “All the sudden, you’ll have one person singing an Adele song, doing jumping jacks or making silly faces.” Kelly Madden, a 22-year-old senior at Ithaca College in Ithaca, N.Y., says she sees a therapist for post-traumatic stress disorder and depression. She’s found her new video sessions convenient but “pretty disjointed. We’re missing that nonverbal body language,” she says. And she’s looking forward to returning to her therapist’s office. “I’d for sure go back to in-person,” she says. “As long as that was safe.”

Lucinda, in yellow jacket, and Amery Leneis; Jessica and Jasper Wallans.

A few weeks ago, Ms. Wallans, a Portland, Ore.-based manager of a sportswear company, turned to gardening, when she and her husband Mike found themselves working from home while caring for Jasper. Her husband built the vegetable beds back in 2018, but Ms. Wallans always felt stretched for time to garden until the lockdown prompted her to seek out activities to do with Jasper nearby. “Putting

him in front of the TV wasn’t going to cut it,” she says. In midMarch “our world changed by bringing us 100% into our home,” Ms. Wallans says. “No more commute, no more school drop-offs.” She and Jasper recently planted celery, carrots, leeks and kale. Working in the garden doesn’t only teach biology and science, says Maree Gaetani, director of strategic initiatives at KidsGardening, a Burlington, Vt.-based garden education nonprofit largely funded by horticulture companies. “It’s a way to appreciate the slowness of life. When you plant something it changes the way you look at the natural world.” Laura Kurz turned growing vegetables indoors into a science experiment with her children, Charlie, 11, and Clara, 8. In late March, Ms. Kurz’s husband Ken picked up a dozen packets of seeds at Walmart and the family planted 11 trays of tomatoes, carrots, cucumbers and

basil. They placed the trays on a ledge in the master bathroom with a skylight overhead, which is “a perfect incubator,” says Ms. Kurz, a special events coordinator in Chadds Ford, Pa. Charlie and Clara help water the plants, which the family will transfer outdoors in a few weeks to a new raised bed they ordered online. Clara says she and her mom chat about which seeds have sprouted. “I like that we can watch them grow and see what happens in a month or two,” the third-grader says. Research shows that gardening or being around plants has physical and psychological benefits, says Charlie Hall, a horticulture professor at Texas A&M University who has analyzed more than 2,000 studies, albeit small ones, usually with 50 subjects or fewer. One 2016 Korean study compared 24 women over age 70 who participated in twice-weekly gardening sessions to 26 women of similar age who didn’t. After 15 sessions over two months, researchers found that the women who gardened showed significantly improved muscle mass, aerobic endurance, hand dexterity and less feelings of depression than the control group. Washington attorney Julia Graff recently started growing beets, carrots and snow peas in a raised bed she built a few weeks ago with her husband, Brad Leneis, 38, also a lawyer. She enlisted their daughters, Amery, 6, and Lucinda, 2, in the project. Initially, gardening held their interest. “Now it’s basically me watering it,” she says. But the vegetable patch has become a way for her to decompress and get outdoors while her children putter nearby. “They’re out there with me, and if they run off and do something else, that’s fine. Eventually they come back to it.”

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A12 | Monday, April 27, 2020

LIFE & ARTS WAYS TO KEEP YOURSELF MOVING AT HOME Here are some things to remember as you try to stay active while stuck at home: n Walking is exercise. Especially outside. But always practice appropriate social distancing. n A 30-minute walk five days a week can help reduce the risk of developing chronic illnesses, according to the CDC. Follow local health and safety guidelines. n While seated and working, set a reminder at 90 minutes to stand up and stretch. n When binge-watching TV shows, pause between episodes for 10 minutes of stairs, stretching or walking around the house.


n Instead of fixating on a number of steps you take, focus on reducing the number of minutes you sit. n Many household tasks count as activities/movement: Cooking, doing dishes, laundry, window cleaning, gardening and caring for house plants.

A Generation Gap Fitbit data shows older users have been more likely to hit 10,000 steps as the coronavirus pandemic moved to the U.S. Dedicated steppers* in January who maintain their steps in March, by age

moderate exercise a week, or 75 minutes of rigorous exercise. “Walking is exercise!” says Claudio Battaglini, professor in the department of exercise and sports science at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. Now is a time for patience, he says. “OK, so you can’t go to the gym and get the perfect workout like you used to. We need to expand our thinking. There are other ways to be physically active.” Even a short walk in the sunshine can bring emotional benefits and improve energy levels, he says. Rather than fixating on the steps you take each day, focus on decreasing the number of minutes you spend sitting down. “If you just break up your sitting time, you’ll significantly lower your risk for chronic diseases,” says Ross Arena, head of the department of physical therapy at the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Applied Health Sciences. He suggests setting an alarm every 60 to 90 minutes to stand up and stretch, or go up and down the stairs a few times. To the collective groan of adolescents everywhere, he recommends family chores. “I tell my kids to come cook with me, so we’re standing together and cooking. Come dry dishes with me, or fold laundry.” He looks for activities that can’t be done sitting down. He’s not the only one. “I washed all the windows, inside and out,” says Michael Fredericson, sports


WITH STAY-AT-HOME orders in place and nonessential businesses closed, most Americans are living their lives within a much smaller radius. The highly motivated have set up home gyms. The rest of us get our daily exercise shuffling from the bedroom to the kitchen to the sofa, making occasional forays out of the house. Although physical activity has gone down overall, not everyone is moving less than they used to, according to activity trackers Fitbit and Garmin. Older adults appear to be keeping up their daily activity levels better than younger adults in data Fitbit analyzed from anonymous users in six U.S. cities: Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco and Seattle. The company found that among a sampling of 50,000 dedicated steppers—people who manage 10,000 steps on at least 21 days a month—about half of those 50 and over were able to maintain their activity levels from January in March despite the shutdowns. Adults ages 18 to 29 had a harder time, with only 29% hitting their target. By comparison, during the pandemic-free March of 2019, some 45% of 18-to-29-year-olds met the dedicated-stepper standard, along with 53% of those 50 and over. “That makes sense, because older adults are more likely to engage in moderate activity like

walking or yard work, which make up a larger portion of their [exercise] profile,” says Melissa Bopp, a professor of kinesiology at Penn State College of Health and Human Development who was not involved in the Fitbit study. Younger adults, particularly students, tend to favor more rigorous exercise, working out at the gym or playing sports. “They get a fair amount of activity just getting places on campus,” she says. With universities on lockdown and many students home, “they’re no longer in charge of getting places anymore.” When Jasmine Lee got her Fitbit last summer, the 20-year-old architecture student at Carnegie Mellon University was sharing a house a 15-minute walk from the Pittsburgh campus and had a job in retail. “I would hit 10,000 steps per day no problem,” she says. Since returning home to Brooklyn, N.Y., in March and shifting to online classes, her daily steps are down to a few hundred. She spends more time on video chats and social media and recently started playing online videogames with friends. Ms. Lee’s parents both work in essential services: her mother for New York City’s Department of Education and her father for the police department. They take stay-at-home orders pretty literally, she says: “There’s a lot of family time. Luckily, I’m really good friends with my little sister.” The past few weeks have

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The Tough Way to 10,000 Steps

medicine physician and director of the Stanford Lifestyle Medicine initiative. “It’s not as appealing to young people, I know, but the key is to break up the day. We’re all doing more video calls and sitting more than we normally would.” “Right now we need to change our focus from training for an event or a goal to staying healthy and keeping our immune system strong,” he says. Dr. Fredericson takes his three children—ages 15, 11 and 5—outside every morning for a 15-minute walk. It isn’t easy, he says, but he doesn’t give them a choice. “My kids keep saying we should get a dog because we’re walking so much,” he jokes. Canine family members may be benefiting the most from the lockdown. Dog-walking went up 50% in the last two weeks of March, according to Whistle, a San Franciscobased company that makes a pet activity tracker, which attaches to a dog’s collar. The company claims about 100,000 users nationwide. Tom Hamdani, a 42-year-old San Francisco resident, used to walk Kuma, his 4-year-old goldendoodle, only a few times a week, leaving the job to a paid dog-walker. He spent most of his time at the CrossFit gym he and his wife own in the city’s Mission District. They closed the gym a month ago and started teaching Zoom classes from their apartment. Mr. Hamdani’s activity level has dropped so much that he stopped wearing his Garmin, he says. But he has been walking Kuma, hitting or exceeding their target of 65 minutes of exercise for the dog each day. “Our new daily goal is to get him to his daily goal,” Mr. Hamdani says.





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18-29 30-49 50-64


*Users who hit 10,000 steps at least 21 days a month Note: Anonymous sample of 50,000 users in Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York and San Francisco Source: the company

yielded a promising development, according to both Fitbit and Garmin: Though net overall steps have gone down, purposeful walks—walking as an activity— have gone up. Purposeful walks nationwide increased 36% during the last two weeks of March, double the increase over the same period in 2019, according to Garmin data. Fitbit claims 30 million users for its devices, which cost between $70 and $250. Garmin devices range from $80 to more than $1,000, with user numbers in the millions, according to the company. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend that adults manage 150 minutes of



THE TENNIS COURTS might be closed, but Zoran Kerezovic’s game has never been stronger. The 66year-old retiree has been rallying regularly with his two grandchildren in the backyard. Mr. Kerezovic and his wife live with their daughter, Nada Kerezovic, and her family in Campbell Hall, a hamlet about 70 miles north of New York City. Born in Serbia, he moved to New York when he was 19. He didn’t start playing tennis until his mid-40s, but now considers himself a die-hard fan—Serbian star Novak Djokovic is his favorite player. To Mr. Kerezovic’s disappointment, neither of his children took to the sport. As soon as his grandchildren, Nicholas Miksa, 9, and Natalie Miksa, 6, started walking, he put a racket in their hands. By the time they were each 5, he had enrolled them in lessons with a private coach. He would often tape the sessions to review with the kids at home. “When you watch yourself play in slow motion, you can really understand how your body moves,” he says. They had been attending lessons twice a week before the coronavirus pandemic. “The kids were so disappointed when lessons stopped and when they learned there wouldn’t be tennis camp this summer,” Ms. Kerezovic says. Mr. Kerezovic wasn’t about to let closed courts end his game or his grandchildren’s training. He devised his own net using twine and rods with specs he found online and created chalk lines on the driveway so they could use the



A Family of Tennis Lovers Rallies, Even Without the Court

Zoran Kerezovic gets creative to play tennis with his grandchildren, Nicholas Miksa and Natalie Miksa. He made a net from twine and rods in his backyard. garage door for skills drills. Tennis lessons allow Ms. Kerezovic and her husband, Danny Miksa, who is self-employed, much needed self-care time. “Those 45 minutes I get on the treadmill are so important,” says Ms. Kerezovic, who has always stayed home to care for the children. Mr. Kerezovic says he has never been more active. This has given him an opportunity to bond more deeply with his grandchildren. “Regardless of the weather, they’re committed to go out and play,” he says.

The Workout

Mr. Kerezovic and his grandchildren jog 1 mile around the neighborhood three mornings a week. He then heads to the garage to lift weights. The children join him doing push-ups, sit-ups and pull-ups. “You need to be flexible to be a good tennis player, so we always

stretch,” he says. When home-school lessons are finished, they join their grandfather for tennis drills. They warm up with a wall rally on the garage door, alternating forehand and backhand and a combination of the two. Next they work on serves. Natalie and Nicholas will play each other and Nicholas also challenges his grandfather. “He has the power now to keep me on my toes,” Mr. Kerezovic says. The family had already been members of Net Generation, the youth arm of the U.S. Tennis Association. At the end of March, the organization launched its Tennis at Home initiative, sharing videos and tips on ways to keep children engaged while courts are closed. Mr. Kerezovic chose a handful of drills from the site that he uses as skill tests. Edgies, a drill that works on your grips, is a favorite. You hold the racket out in front of

you with the frame perpendicular to the ground, and see how many times you can hit the ball to the ground using the outer edge of the racket. After a few rounds you switch and see how many times you can bounce the ball in the air using the top edge of the racket. “They’re always motivated to beat their numbers,” he says. Plank pass is a drill that improves hand-eye coordination, core strength and shoulder stability. The children start by kneeling on their hands and knees and roll a ball back and forth. They make the drill harder by performing it in a plank pose, trying to keep their hips level and a straight line from lower neck to tailbone.

The Diet

Mr. Kerezovic tries to eat a Mediterranean diet and avoids fast food. His wife, Milica Kerezovic, and daughter are the cooks of the

house. Ms. Miksa says she’s thankful the family can still buy fresh fruit and vegetables. “We’re buying more and cooking and freezing food,” she says. The family buys raw milk, eggs and honey from local farms. Yogurt topped with bananas, bagels or oatmeal are the household’s go-to breakfast options. Ms. Miksa has been baking bread and she says the family is grilling outside now that the weather is warmer. Lunch is often salad topped with chicken cooked on the grill. The other night they grilled hamburgers and baked french fries.

The Gear and Cost

Mr. Miksa plays with a Head Radical racket ($220) and likes Head tennis shoes. His grandchildren play with Babolat rackets. Years ago, Mr. Kerezovic turned the garage into a gym equipped with a Smith machine and free weights.

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Monday, April 27, 2020 | A13


A Symphony of Complication and Tenacity Online classical-music performances are increasing, but piecing together an orchestra digitally has many difficulties

can be. This is one reason why so much classical quarantine music involves repeated patterns and rhythms, like the Habenera or “Boléro”: the repeated patterns help keep playing and editing in order. The final performance, then, is created within a home studio, with mixing and editing. This is not that different from the way many recordings of art music have been created in recent decades. There are few recordings of real performances. Tracks are added or subtracted, pitches and tempi are modified, errors are corrected. So the quarantine genre is a strange hybrid. This technological enterprise gathers together distinctive individuals, intriguing because of their personalities, or the trappings of private life we see—the plantings, artwork, bedposts, books. These players can seem throwbacks to an era before recordings when music was primarily made and heard within the home (in the 19th century, operas and orchestral works were widely heard in piano

transcriptions played by amateurs). Quarantine musicians, in their solitude, also hark back to origins of their profession, because it is through solitary and obsessive training that players become musicians. At the same time, they are playing in an ensemble that is pure artifice. It is as if each actor in a Chekhov play had been recorded separately and their performances were stitched together so it looked like they were hearing and reacting to one another. So music’s triumph over solitude here is partly illusion. Moreover, if this technique were used with any more elaborate pieces or with pieces without a steady beat and repeated motifs, the failings would become more evident. Powerful ensemble music is rarely made without players reacting to one another, or bending time, or exploring sounds made together. You can hear some of what is at stake here in recordings beginning a century ago, as very different improvisatory styles of late 19th century musicians gradually began to disappear in fa-

vor of note-perfect, infinitely repeatable performances. If quarantine ends up becoming a long-term way of life, we might expect another wave of transformations. But right now, when quarantine has not yet become normal, and everything may yet change again, there is something inspiring about many of these examples and the immense energies expended on them. I’m particularly looking forward to what Quarantine Opera does as it turns to the Brindisi drinking song of “La Traviata.” It has already solicited public contributions that are now being edited. In most of these offerings, too, the results should sound much more awkward than they do. Instead, they are exhilarating—perhaps, in part, because each player, locked in a private world, can still imagine what lies beyond those walls, and what will one day come after they are no longer needed.


quarantine would just be a heightened version of this duet with players’ images and playing beamed in from different locations, interacting using something like Zoom conference software. But generally with software like Zoom, the lag between a sound made and a sound heard on the other side makes coordinated performance almost impossible. The method used in these performances is much more remarkable: None of the players hears the others. Here is the method used by Quarantine Opera. Each performer downloads a video showing the music director (Fergus McAlpine) seeming to lead an orchestra. Through headphones or earbuds, each musician also hears a piano playing the score and enters at the proper moment, as if in concert; their solo performances are recorded on video by a smartphone or other device. These recordings are then sent to editors, who join them together in a single ensemble, preserving distinct images while combining sounds. If this sounds complicated and difficult, it


A screenshot of Quarantine Opera’s recording of the Habanera from Bizet’s ‘Carmen,’ one of a growing number of coordinated performances

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A CHORAL SINGER is beaming, nodding, holding a cup of coffee before joining in. A trombonist reads a book until he has to play his brief part. One of the five Carmens sings while mixing a recipe; another serenades two balloons with cartoon faces representing her lovers. These musicians perform alone in their homes in Portugal, Slovenia, Sweden, the Czech Republic, Belgium, Italy, Norway, New York and other farflung locations, their parts and presences stitched into a performance of the Habanera from Bizet’s “Carmen” that is as alluring, playful and exuberant as any staged version. The group calls itself Quarantine Opera. In the past month or so, online video mosaics of isolated players united in happy ensemble have evolved into a new musical genre, honoring social distancing while overcoming musical distancing. Figuratively speaking, the genre has gone viral. A spirited segment of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony by the Rotterdam Philharmonic has had 2.7 million views since it was put online on March 20. The New York Philharmonic performs a quarantined Ravel’s “Boléro.” A church choir from Formigine, Italy, offers a similar setting of “O Crux Ave.” And the National Orchestra of France invited aspiring musicians to join them in an online “quarantine concert” performing Shostakovich’s Waltz No. 2 from his second Jazz Suite. New offerings appear in varied forms of pop as well, as in the recent broadcast “One World: Together At Home.” The genre is self-consciously playful, alluding to the bizarre new conditions of life while asserting transcendence of its isolation through music. But the phenomenon is also a lot more complicated than it seems. At first, world-wide social distancing made ensemble music-making seem almost absurd. In a mordant Facebook video, a Turkish pianist, Umut Vicdan, plays a spritely Brahms Hungarian Dance No. 5 for four hands with an unidentified partner. Each is distantly seated at the far ends of an upright piano, wearing surgical gloves and shooting deadpan looks at the camera, as if declaring: Look what things have come to. You might think that an orchestral or operatic performance in



Mr. Rothstein is the Journal’s Critic at Large.


Writing as a Source of Pleasure and Beauty BY LEE LAWRENCE STUCK INSIDE TO FIGHT a pandemic, it’s hard to keep our thoughts from circling back to the virus. Never enlightening; always unsettling. An effective and soothing countermeasure is to engage our minds with complex and beautiful art forms—found aplenty in Asian art. Among these, the most revered throughout East Asia is Chinese calligraphy. Like Robert Motherwell and Franz Kiline, we can and do respond to the abstract qualities of a master’s brushstrokes. But whether the characters they form cascade like rivulets, nestle into grids, or explode joyfully, they are words, written by people who had internalized rules, conventions and models of calligraphy—as had their peers. Achieving their level may not be in our grasp, but even under quarantine we can deepen our appreciation of this artform. A good place to start is “Reading and Looking: The Pleasures of Chinese Calligraphy,” a filmed talk by Robert E. Harrist Jr., professor of Chinese art history at Columbia University. He begins with a 17th-century work by Mi Wanzhong, whose writing offers “a display of beautiful brushwork.” He shows how Mi manipulates the flow of ink for aesthetic effect and cre-

ates a sense of depth by overlapping strokes. “And I think,” Mr. Harrist says, “most Chinese connoisseurs would say this text,” a conventional poem, “is not terribly important. It is the way the characters are written that is the real source of pleasure and beauty.” The art value of calligraphy therefore does not depend on words’ meanings but their form. “There is,” Mr. Harrist explains, “a kind of inner architecture in each character that has to be done just right if it’s going to be beautiful.” Moreover, these forms evolved from pictographs and, while they have become abstract symbols, still retain traces of their early origins. “And it’s probably

this,” says Mr. Harrist, “that gives them a kind of secret animation and life that other forms of writing lack.” This applies to all basic scripts: seal—most visibly related to pictographs; clerical—somewhat squat and flat; cursive—fast, fluid, with connected strokes; standard or regular—neat, easy to read, and used for most printed Chinese texts; and running standard—looser than standard, more restrained than cursive. Columbia University’s web page on 5 Basic Script Styles in Chinese Calligraphy provides a good overview, complete with quiz, while calligraphers in two short videos on the Asian Art Museum’s website—“Decoding Chinese Calligraphy” and

“Appreciating Chinese Calligraphy”—bring the artform to life. A rewarding exercise is to look at masterworks in museum collections, and doing so online is ideal. There, these light-sensitive works are always accessible, can be magnified, and—a rare treat for scrolls—can be viewed in their entirety. Some texts also explain formal qualities of strokes, what past master an artist is imitating, where one innovates or blurs the line between scripts. Those who want to dive this deep can visit the online calligraphy presentations of the Princeton University Art Museum, the National Palace Museum in Taiwan and the China Online Museum. A persistent theme is that calligraphy expresses an individual’s character, mood and vital energy, or chi. In his talk, Mr. Harrist compares the brush to a seismograph that “picks up every inflection from your body—your arm, your wrist, the tip of your fingers—and transmits it to the writing surface.” His metaphor is particularly instructive, for it also points to the rules and models that calligraphers drill into their muscle

memory through endless practice. So the best way to understand what all this means is to pick up a brush. Materials can be ordered from art supply stores and instructions easily accessed online. Columbia and the Asian Art Museum, for example, provide tutorials, background information and worksheets—the former on its Chinese Calligraphy page, the latter on its calligraphy resources page. In addition, animations on Arch Chinese illustrate stroke order and structure, and any number of free, online demonstrations offer follow-along models. Two YouTube videos that complement each other nicely are “Chinese Calligraphy Learning” and a demonstration of basic strokes by Shun Kai Tse, a retired teacher and avid promoter of calligraphy. Longer, fee-based classes are tailored to language students, but one package for purchase offers, for our purposes, a spot-on approach. In Heart of the Brush, calligrapher and artist Kazuaki Tanahashi merges the teaching of basic strokes with the age-old practice of copying ancient masters. As he says in lesson one, “you can experience a beginning and at the same time an advanced study of East Asian calligraphy. And,” he adds with a slight smile, “you can enjoy drawing lines.” The process is slow, its eureka moments not readily shared (“aha, the tip of my brush touches down at the wrong angle!”), and the final results, well, inconsistent at best. But every hour of practice, every page filled, every attempt to emulate the movements of a master silences fruitless thoughts while deepening our understanding of this art. Looking at a calligraphic masterpiece, we take in more details; feel faint echoes of the movement behind the strokes; start to sense the control infusing wild cursives and the vitality animating tidy standard scripts. Might this explain why calligraphy features so prominently in introductions to Chinese painting? A question for another day, another column. Ms. Lawrence writes about Asian and Islamic art for the Journal.




Sections of Huang Tingjian’s ‘Biographies of Lian Po and Lin Xiangru’ (c. 1095), left, and Mi Fu’s ‘Poem Written in a Boat on the Wu River’ (c. 1095), below

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A14 | Monday, April 27, 2020



Baseball Is Back in Taiwan IMAGO/ZUMA PRESS

With cardboard cutouts in the stands, players are adjusting to a strange new reality BY JARED DIAMOND


Cardboard cutouts placed in the stands have replaced fans at games in Taiwan’s Chinese Professional Baseball League. are more intense. Lions pitcher Josh Roenicke went home to Florida last month to be with his wife for the birth of their child. When he returned, he was quarantined alone for two weeks in a hotel room, unable to even go into the hallway. He isn’t complaining. The alternative is not playing at all. Eleven Sports Taiwan has been live-streaming an English-language version of some games. A broadcast of the Monkeys taking on the Fubon Guardians on Twitter earlier this month that began early in the morning in the U.S., drew more than a million views. The CPBL, which played its first season in 1990, is considered Asia’s third-best baseball league, behind those in Japan and South Korea. It consists of four top-level teams, with a fifth set to join next year. Teams are allowed to carry four foreign players, with three active at the same time. More baseball from Asia could be coming, too. The Korea Baseball Organization’s opening day is now scheduled for May 5, and ESPN is in talks with the league to air live games, according to people familiar with the negotiations. A KBO spokesman said that ESPN suggested the Korean league should offer broadcasting rights for free and give ESPN the ability to terminate any deal during the season. He said the ESPN request was a non-starter for the league, though talks have not ended. ESPN declined to comment, citing ongoing negotiations. The Korean league aims to play its entire 144-game regular season. Barehanded high-fives and spitting are banned. Daily temperature checks are mandatory. Players are

co Fo m rp m er er s ci on al a l us , e on

Aspiring U.S. Olympians rang in 1980 with high hopes for the upcoming Moscow Summer Games. But by late March, those athletes’ dreams smashed into the American government-steered boycott of the Games over the Soviet Union’s invasion of Afghanistan. This year unfolded similarly for U.S. athletes. January’s ebullience evaporated on March 24 with the first-ever postponement of an Olympics, as the coronavirus pandemic pushed the Tokyo 2020 Games to July 2021. One of the athletes who would have participated in the 1980 Games, three-time Olympic-medalist hurdler Edwin Moses, entered this year aiming to gain more recognition for his ’80 teammates. But Moses has expanded that effort into an educational push and informal support group for the 2020 athletes— centered on a town-hall webinar to take place Tuesday night. Moses wants young athletes to know “that there is a group of Olympians that you may not be aware of that suffered through, not just a postponement but a total cancellation—and with the condonement of the U.S. government and the (U.S.) Olympic Committee.” The late-1979 Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in the midst of the Cold War sent shock waves through the White House and prompted then-President Jimmy Carter to call for a boycott of the 1980 Summer Olympics, which were to be held in the Soviet Union for the first time. On April 12, 1980, Vice President Walter Mondale lobbied the USOC House of Delegates in Colorado. Later that day, the USOC voted to boycott the Moscow Olympics. Of the estimated 460 U.S. athletes who qualified for the 1980 Summer Olympics, about half never competed in any Games, according to Olympics historian Bill Mallon. Mondale, now age 92, said in a recent interview, “It was going to be the world congratulating the Soviet Union for their fine work, and I didn’t think that that should happen.”


Feeling Pain of Missed Olympics


Edwin Moses at the 1984 Olympics.


It was supposed to be a typical day of work in Taiwan’s Chinese Professional Baseball League, but Justin Nicolino couldn’t shake the feeling that he was being watched. A pitcher for the Rakuten Monkeys, Nicolino was playing catch in what was supposed to be an empty stadium when the paranoia struck. “I see someone out of my peripheral and I’m like, ‘Why is this person staring at me?’” Nicolino said. “I completely forgot there were cardboard people in the stands.” This is what passes for normal these days in the CPBL, one of the few professional sports leagues in the world currently operating. While Major League Baseball tries to formulate a plan to stage a 2020 season amid the coronavirus pandemic, real-life baseball is currently being played in Taiwan. There are no spectators, save for cheerleaders and the fake fans in the seats. But it’s baseball nonetheless. And for the players adjusting to their strange new reality, it’s proof that sports behind closed doors is better than no sports at all. “I definitely think it’s worth it, just to give people something to watch, something to look forward to right now,” said Donn Roach, a pitcher for the Uni-President Lions. “There’s nothing better than giving people hope, which I think baseball would do.” Taiwan has been praised by global health authorities for its response to Covid-19. Despite its prox-

There are no spectators at the games, save for cheerleaders and the fake fans in the seats.


imity to China, the origin of the global outbreak, there have been fewer than 450 confirmed cases on an island with a population of around 23 million. As a result, even as lockdowns continue across much of the U.S., daily life is generally carrying on in Taiwan. Players receive frequent text messages from their teams reminding them to avoid crowded places—like Taiwan’s popular night markets—and to wear face masks in public, but they are otherwise able to move freely. Nonetheless, the CPBL is taking precautions to ensure the illness doesn’t sweep through a team, which could force the entire league to stop. Players have their temperature taken on their way into the parking lot and then walk through infrared body temperature scanners when they enter the ballpark. For players who arrived in Taiwan more recently, the restrictions


expected to wear masks outside the playing field and dugout. Those watching the Taiwanese games are treated to a different style of baseball than MLB. Hitters reign. The average fastball is in the mid-to-upper 80s, as opposed to the flamethrowers in the U.S. Defense is sloppier. Therefore, Monkeys pitcher Ryan Carpenter said, “It’s a slugfest every game.” The crack of the bat is more prominent than ever, because there are no fans in the building to drown it out. Instead, teams have gotten creative: The cheerleaders still

dance throughout the game, and music still plays. Mascots engage in antics for the camera. Carpenter said his fiancée back home contacted the Monkeys to have four cardboard cutout “fans” with her face put into the seats. On the field, it’s baseball as usual. The home-plate umpire is stationed inches behind the catcher. Fielders tag runners. The Monkeys and Guardians even had a benchesclearing incident—sans social distancing—after a beanball last week. —Andrew Jeong contributed to this article.

The WSJ Daily Crossword | Edited by Mike Shenk

Shown are today’s noon positions of weather systems and precipitation. Temperature bands are highs for the day.

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50s 70s 80s



l Helena Billings


50s Boise


10s 20s t Montreal ttawa Ottawa






ip Winnipeg


Salt lt Lake L C Cityy

T Toronto ff l Buffalo

k Milwaukee t Detroit Cleve Cl l d Cleveland Ch Chic g Chicago

es Moines Des

Ch y Cheyenne

30s 40s

30s 40s

A Augusta

40s 50s

p / . Pa pls Mpls./St. Paul

oux FFalls ll Sioux


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