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Community Champion

COVID-19, toilet paper, hoarding, and emergency preparedness

Toilet paper?  Really?

 

Of course, I've seen the news stories showing streams of shoppers with carts full of toilet paper. The news stories all showed Costco, so I was hoping that maybe it was only Costco members who were that stupid. But, no. On my way home last night I stopped for some groceries and the toilet paper aisle in my local Save-On was pretty bare. (Not, fortunately, completely denuded, so my neighbours aren't completely deluded.)  (And, if you're looking, the Safeway had a decent stock, albeit with some bare sections.)

 

Hoarding is a particularly insidious threat.  It's hard to protect against.  Unless you're going to ration, how do you tell people what (and how much) they can and cannot buy?  (Yes, I know.  Rationing smacks of socialism, or some other type of non-or-anti-capitalist system.  But hoarding is the inherent weakness of capitalism: unrestricted, capitalism tends to concentrate capital, which then becomes useless.)  Now, we are not only faced with the coronavirus, but with the COVID-19 toilet paper meme virus.  People see that there is a run on, or shortage of, toilet paper, so they run out and drive around (wasting gas) trying to buy toilet paper.  Creating a shortage of toilet paper.

 

(It's particularly galling here in BC.  We have trees.  We make toilet paper.  By the ton.)

 

Why toilet paper?  I mean, I defer to no one in my admiration for the stuff.  It is one of the marvels of the modern age.  (Toilet paper, and the Internet.)  It has lots of uses besides that originally intended.  But it has no magical medicinal properties.

 

Yes, I know.  We, in the emergency management field, have been trying, for years, to get people to build emergency prep kits.  Have enough supplies to tide you over for three days.  Or seven days.  Or, in this case, two weeks.  Fine.  I get it.  But do you know how much toilet paper you use in two weeks?  You don't need to clear out stores.

 

(I have noticed gaps in the canned beans section, and also in the soup aisle.  Although, for some reason, Campbell's Chunky soups are completely stocked.  Personally, I like chunky soups ...)

 

And, if you are going to build an emergency prep kit, during an emergency is not the time to do it.  You have to put some thought into it.  How much toilet paper do you use in a week?  How much soup do you eat in a week?  Do you eat soup?  Yes, I advise you to build an emergency prep kit.  But build one.  Don't just rush out and buy toilet paper.

 

Besides, COVID-19 is not going to be the type of "stock up on water and canned beans" type of regional disaster.  You will still be able to get Amazon to deliver toilet paper to you if you get sick and have absolutely no friends in all the world to take care of you.  (They may want to drop it and run, and you may have to keep watch on your Ring-camera-that-is-insecure-because-you-haven't-changed-the-default-password-have-you to prevent doorstep thieves from stealing your toilet paper, but they will deliver.)  (So, by the way, will Save-On.)  Travel is going to be a problem, and stocks may be a problem, and there may be lots of other problems.  But toilet paper is not going to be a problem.  Unless people hoard it.


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15 Replies
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Community Champion

Re: COVID-19, toilet paper, hoarding, and emergency preparedness

Ah but who says Amazon will be able to source the toilet paper .

 

All joking aside, we know so little about this virus and the fear is real. I don't feel that the governments (MHOO) are really not being honest about what is happening.  (I am lumping both Trump and Trudeau in here).  I worry that there is constant deflection and contradiction with what WHO is saying.  People are beginning to panic.  

 

I live in Ontario and we have fairly decent drinking water, yet when in the store yesterday, I witnessed people filling their carts with cases of bottled water to the point the store put a 4 case limit on the purchase.  I then saw the same people buy four, exit the store come back buy 4 more and repeat that again......silliness (probably not in their minds)...

 

I also saw folks stocking up on paper towels and toilet paper (and there weren't sales on it).

 

Folks should always have an emergency kit ready but much like security breaches/events they seem to be forgotten until something happens.

 

Okay, getting off my soap box, going to the store to buy water and toilet paper (I think I can squeeze one or two more packages into the closet).....

 

Regards

 

d

 

 

 

 

 

Highlighted
Community Champion

Re: COVID-19, toilet paper, hoarding, and emergency preparedness

My barber is quite the BS artist, so when he told me about $80 bottles of hand sanitizer I didn't believe him. Turns out he was (almost) right.


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Community Champion

Re: COVID-19, toilet paper, hoarding, and emergency preparedness

Apoocalypse now.


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Community Champion

Re: COVID-19, toilet paper, hoarding, and emergency preparedness

LMAO

Highlighted
Community Champion

Re: COVID-19, toilet paper, hoarding, and emergency preparedness

Jim Bakker is selling coronavirus snake oil.  (Well, silver oil, I guess ...)


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Community Champion

Re: COVID-19, toilet paper, hoarding, and emergency preparedness

Rob,

 

Just when you think it is safe NOT to buy extra toilet paper, this happens:

 

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/paper-excellence-canada-malware-infection-1.5474274

 

😉

 

d

 

Highlighted
Community Champion

Re: COVID-19, toilet paper, hoarding, and emergency preparedness

> dcontesti (Community Champion) posted a new reply in Industry News on 03-07-2020

>   Just when you think it is safe NOT to buy extra toilet paper, this happens:  
> https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/paper-excellence-canada-malware-
> infection-1.5474274

OK, so this means that everyone who has stockpiled toilet paper should safely
dispose of it because it may have been infected with a virus.

(The scary thing about making that joke is that I have to tell people that IT IS
JUST A JOKE and some people will still believe it and take it seriously ...)

====================== (quote inserted randomly by Pegasus Mailer)
rslade@vcn.bc.ca slade@victoria.tc.ca rslade@computercrime.org
Without vitamin C, we cannot produce collagen, an essential
component of bones, cartilage, tendons and other connective
tissues. Collagen binds our wounds, but that binding is replaced
continually throughout our lives. Thus in advanced scurvy old
wounds long thought healed will magically, painfully reappear.
- Jason C. Anthony
In a sense, there is no such thing as healing. From paper cuts
to surgical scars, our bodies are catalogues of wounds:
imperfectly locked doors quietly waiting, sooner or later, to
spring back open. - Geoff Manaugh
victoria.tc.ca/techrev/rms.htm http://twitter.com/rslade
http://blogs.securiteam.com/index.php/archives/author/p1/
https://is.gd/RotlWB


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Community Champion

Re: COVID-19, toilet paper, hoarding, and emergency preparedness

Latest 2 cases in BC are at a care home a couple of blocks from me, so, if I suddenly stop posting ...


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Community Champion

Re: COVID-19, toilet paper, hoarding, and emergency preparedness


@rslade wrote:

> dcontesti (Community Champion) posted a new reply in Industry News on 03-07-2020

>   Just when you think it is safe NOT to buy extra toilet paper, this happens:  
> https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/paper-excellence-canada-malware-
> infection-1.5474274


Goes to show you the weaknesses in the supply chain.