Tom Hanks Was the Last Straw

March 12, 2020   |  
  • U.S. Slaps 26 European Countries with Coronavirus Travel Ban
  • Carnival Sinks as Princess Cruises Suspends Business
  • Coronavirus & the Market: Small Changes, Big Effects


U.S. Slaps 26 European Countries with Coronavirus Travel Ban

Well folks, President Trump finally got his travel ban. It just ain’t the kind of travel ban he wanted.

It’s almost as if… Oh my god! The president has been wishing on a cursed monkey’s paw. This explains everything.

Addressing the nation last night, President Trump imposed a travel ban on 26 European countries, just hours after Tom Hanks announced he had the virus. (Oh, and the World Health Organization declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic but I’m convinced it was the Tom Hanks thing.)

With confirmed cases of the virus surging on the continent, the U.S. has taken the extraordinary step to ban travel from the 26 European countries that make up the Schengen Area: a restriction-free utopia where Europeans can travel without a passport. (Which is a pretty chill way to spend the summer if you’re a college student or the coronavirus.)

Of the 26 countries affected, France, Spain, and Italy have been hit the hardest by the virus. And I don’t think it’s a coincidence that they just so happen to be Europe’s sexiest nations.

European countries not a part of the Schengen Area are excluded from the ban, for now, including the U.K. and Ireland (who are already rotten with coronavirus).

The ban starts at midnight Friday and lasts for 30 days (so the Catholics can just think of it as giving up flying to America for Lent).

The ban will apply to anyone doing fun stuff in any of the effected countries up to 14 days prior to their arrival in the U.S. But won’t cover U.S. residents or their families (because it doesn’t count if you get the virus off some dude from Oklahoma City).

In other coronavirus news (because all news is coronavirus news now), Tom Hanks announced he and his wife Rita Wilson are positive for the coronavirus.

Hanks is by far the biggest name to contract the virus, but the only reason we know he has the virus is because he’s in Australia right now where testing is free and abundant. It’s likely that there are more celebrities with the virus who just haven’t been tested. (I’m looking at you, Cher.)

In other other coronavirus news, the NBA has suspended the season after Utah Jazz player Rudy Gobert tested positive for virus. (Which is probably the best thing that could have happened to the Golden State Warriors this season.) The NHL also suspended the regular season just a few hours ago.

Yesterday’s avalanche of fun coronavirus news did little to reassure investors (especially the thing about Tom Hanks). And the global selloff continued when the markets opened this morning.

The S&P 500 plunged 7% after the opening bell, triggering a 15-minute halt in trading for the second time this week. At market close the DJIA had fallen 2,352 points (9.99%), the worst day in a pretty crumby week. The S&P 500 fell 9.92%, while the NASDAQ gave up 9.43%.


Carnival Corp. Sinks after Princess Cruises Suspends Business

Carnival Corp. Sinks after Princess Cruises Suspends Business

Shares of Carnival Corp. did an impression of the Titanic this morning after its Princess Cruises line announced it will suspend global operations for two months.

Princess Cruises has the distinct privilege of being the coronavirus’s preferred mode of travel.

Back when this pandemic was just a little baby outbreak, the Diamond Princess had one of the highest concentrations of confirmed cases with more than 700 infected passengers and crew. And just last week, 21 cases of COVID-19 were confirmed on another Princess moored off the coast of California.

When asked why the coronavirus outbreaks seem to be disproportionately affecting its floating tubs of germs, Princess President Jan Swartz said: I dunno, that’s weird, right guys? What a crazy coincidence. Haha, DON’T NOT LOOK BEHIND THE CURTAIN AT THE ALL DAY NACHO BAR.

“We’ve been asked, and we’ve asked ourselves, why COVID-19 seems to be impacting Princess so heavily,” Swartz said in a video shared on YouTube. “We don’t really know.”

Voyages will be suspended between today and May 10. Some trips that are already underway will be brought to an early end at the “most convenient location for guests.” (GET OFF IF THIS IS YOUR CONTINENT, FOLKS!)

Shares of Carnival, which owns Princess Cruises, slid 17% after the opening bell. Overall the stock has fallen more than 57% since Jan. 1.

In Other News

Young people captilize on cheap


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Coronavirus & the Market: Small Changes, Big Effects

In today’s One Last Thing, we’re going to continue our commentary on this week’s downturn from our in-house experts.

But before you get to that, I have a small announcement to make. Tomorrow, you’ll be getting a new (free) addition to your OLT subscription. You don’t need to do anything about it.

Just scroll on down and check out a new feature right here in the issue. Can’t tell you what is, but I will say, you’ll probably like it if you have ears. And you like listening to stuff with those ears. And if you were ever curious as to what I sound like in real life…

That’s all say for now. Today, I want to continue our emergency coverage with our resident futurist, George Gilder.

As usual, George is approaching the situation from a completely different angle. He relates the virus panic to the research of Nobel Prize winner Thomas Schelling, author of the book Micromotives and Macrobehavior.

In short, slight changes in everyone’s behavior and ideas – as long as the changes are similar – can have huge effects.

To hear George’s conversation with our publisher, Doug, simply click the image below. You’ll be taken to our website where you can listen in.

Doug and George


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Closing Data for Today

DJIA$21,200↓ 9.99%
S&P Index 500$2,469↓ 9.92%
NASDAQ$750↓ 9.43%
Gold$1,569↓ 4.52%
Silver$15.67↓ 6.60%
Bitcoin$6,042↓ 23.22%

  • According to a new ISM survey, coronavirus has disrupted the supply chains of nearly 75% of U.S. companies.
  • Yesterday the Dow entered a bear market for the first time since 2009. (Investment prices dropped at least 20% from a recent high.)
  • The Trump admin proposed limiting insulin costs to $35 a month for older Americans.


Shane Ormond
Editor, One Last Thing

The post Tom Hanks Was the Last Straw appeared first on Laissez Faire.


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