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This is Planet Money from NPR. OK, so this is like our go to spot for Hangover's. I was just going to say New Year's Day every year. Oh yeah. Oh yeah, yeah.
That's my mom. I like Gonzalez. We're at our favorite seafood spot, Mariscos Spot in San Diego.
Oyster Bar is a restaurant name. And it's really just because we're from T.J., TJ is basically shafted decline. And it's like street food kind of style. Basically, it's street food. Yes. And you guys are brother and sister. Yeah, we're brother and sister. Yeah. My name is Ivan. Yvonne, Yvonne Castle. I am owner and cook a dishwasher server bartender, busser everything.
My name is Monica Fassel and I'm owner of the same. I do everything. Your mom's in the back. She's of my mom Aleesha the bus.
This family makes the best drinks for a hangover from the Merinda margaritas.
My favorite animal, Margarita, comes from the tamarind sea and we make it into a paste. We put sugar on it, remet with. It's not spicy, but it's like sweet chili powder, chili powder and lime.
So good. But then Michala is the real cure for me. Salted rim lime ice cream like a Mexican soy sauce we like to call it. And the beer.
OK, you know what you're going to get Mom. OK, I'm going to have the two seviche tostadas shrimp subject from Civita. OK, would you like me to love to drink. But we're doing this to go ok. Yes of course. Yeah we can now do that. You can take your drinks to go your metellus your wine to go with a few exceptions, New Orleans or Vegas. This is kind of a new thing for the United States.
We put it in a plastic cup and we feel it so you can take it. We recommend that you don't open it until you get home. California and a lot of other states have recently told restaurants to help you out during the pandemic. We're suspending the rules about taking cocktails off the premises. We want you to make some money and this will help.
I remember that I was like, afraid at first because it's been like such like you can't do that. You can't sell alcohol to go. People can be outside of the door drinking a beer because we can get in trouble. But then, like all of these restrictions that we had to start like loosening drinks to go our thing right now just for the pandemic.
And at first Monica was like, this is great until she had to start handing off cocktails to food delivery drivers in little plastic cups.
What made me nervous was that they looked at very, very young and we were giving them like Metellus climate, those wine to go and we started carting them. You're asking the drivers for their idea? Yes.
But now getting a Tamarindo margarita delivered to your door by a suspiciously young looking driver just seems totally normal. Another change, drinking outdoors. In normal times, there was this rule that if a restaurant wanted to serve a beer on the sidewalk, they had to build some kind of barrier. It's just like another special permit. And it's in it's hard on businesses, too, because they have to spend more money to do that stuff.
Now, everyone is outside, though. You don't need a special permit. You don't need to build a special fake fence out of flowerpots or something like that. People are drinking margaritas everywhere. Rules have been broken. And it's not just drinking a bunch of things we thought we had to do.
We don't have to do them anymore, like paying our student loan payments on time. All of a sudden, we don't have to pay them for the rest of the year.
There's no interest, no consequences. That job your boss said you had to go to the office to do. You don't have to go to the office to do it every day.
Rules are going out the window and maybe some of the pre covid rules should stay broken.
Hello and welcome to Planet Money, I'm Sarah Gonzalez. And I'm Jacob Goldstein. Today on the show, after the pandemic, when things go back to normal in, let's say, January of twenty twenty two.
Oh, too much, it seems so far away. That's not even wildly optimistic. I know. What is life going to look like? What rules are going to stay broken? Are we going to be just walking down the streets with our cocktails in our hands forever.
Oh, my gosh, I was such a good mutola. It's a great margarita and it's good. This message comes from NPR sponsor, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. Michigan is leading the U.S. for mobility related patents and is developing the future at their World-Class autonomous vehicle testing sites. If you're ready to move into the future with your mobility business, see how they can help at planet AMCOM. Pure hyphen opportunity. Good question. That's a really good question. It's a great question.
This is free therapy. Thank you for asking me that. God, that's such a good question.
That's an interesting question. But what fresh air interviews are really about are the interesting answers. Listen and subscribe to Fresh Air from why an NPR.
Linda Aikin is a professor at the University of Pennsylvania's School of Nursing and the director of the Center for Health Outcomes and Policy Research.
And you're like pro rule breaking your rule breaker?
Well, the rules that I think deserve to be broken, not all of them. Would you be like a nursing expert? Yes. Yeah, yeah.
And in health care, Linda says there were lots of rules that were out there just begging to be broken.
First of all, we have way too many rules in health care and they're not really in the consumer's interest.
And it's not just Linda who thinks this. In March, the federal government, the US secretary of Health and Human Services, sent a letter to governors basically saying, please states break some of these health care rules, like there's this one that says nurses can't go work in another state super easily. If you are a nurse in New Jersey and you want to go be a nurse in New York, just across the river, you have to apply for a new license.
You have to pay a fee. Wait the processing time, it could take months.
Linda says this makes no sense because it's not like nurses have to take a new test or study some New York specific medical information. Every nurse, no matter what state they're in, they all take the same test.
All nurses take a national test. So it's not like the California nurse exam. It is the regular national exam.
Yes, because health care, you know, we have the same technology in every state. Patients are the same. They have the same problems. Everybody has babies everywhere.
Linda says this is such a silly rule that 34 states don't even follow it anymore. But big states like New York, California, they do have this rule. So when covid hit and states were short nurses, they had to officially waive the rule. They had to come out and say, out-of-state nurses, you can start working today, please just come on over.
And Linda says, when the world goes back to normal, these rules will probably stay broken, at least for the most part. It'll probably be much easier for nurses in one state to go work in another.
OK, so nurse regulations, that's one big change. Another big one in health care telehealth. You know, those like doctor visits by video chat. We've had the ability to do this for a while. The technology has been there. Telehealth just never really took off.
It was really thought of as something just for rural areas where they didn't have enough providers or maybe for the homebound elderly. It hasn't really been offered to you and me and the average person who didn't want to wait six months to get an appointment and who didn't want to take all day off from work to get to a specific place.
Doctors were like, how do we even charge for a telehealth visit? It was considered too tricky to even deal with. But when the pandemic hit, everyone was like, oh, telehealth, we can do that. We love Dell, please stay home.
Do not come to our office with your deadly infectious disease. So they wanted to do it. But there was this little, frankly, kind of ridiculous rule from Medicare and Medicaid about billing.
The rule was doctors and nurses. If they are going to see patients even by telemedicine, they have to be in their office, their doctor's office.
Yeah, because that's what constitutes a visit. Yes. If you're going to bill for a visit, the service has to be provided from the address of record where you're located. So you can't say you provided a visit to a patient if you're at your home and you're a patient in your living room and.
Yeah, and yeah, right. And so that thing had to be fixed.
Fixing this little silly billing rule took an act of Congress in March. As the pandemic was shutting down the country, Congress had to come out and say yes. A doctor's visit is still considered a doctor's visit if the doctor is at home. This kind of visit is now billable to Medicaid and Medicare. And Linda says private insurers tend to follow whatever Medicaid and Medicare does.
Already everybody has face time with their doctor and people are getting used to it. Lots of us have tried it. We like it and we want those rules to be permanent, Linda says.
After the pandemic, we're not going to want to take a day off of work, pay for parking, wait in the waiting room just to spend five minutes talking to the doctor and have them tell us everything is fine. Next up, college, sports, sports, sports, bikes, bikes. This one comes from an economist named Damon Jones, I'm an associate professor at the University of Chicago Harris School of Public Policy, also for a long time.
He was a huge college sports fan. He left Stanford, his alma mater. He was so into the football team that even after he got a job as a professor at the University of Chicago, he kept doing whatever he could to get back to Stanford during football season.
I'm booking talks at Stanford, coincidentally, on the same time when there's a home game, whatever it takes to appear like a super fan.
Yeah, but over time, Damon starts hearing people talk about how college athletes are being exploited and Damon starts thinking more about the economics of student athletes.
We can call them student athletes. You can call them whatever you want. Let's cut to the chase. Their labor is being used to produce a product that is being sold.
And he says there is a racial dimension here to the biggest programs. The players are in football, a majority black in the south, and their fan base is much more made up of white people.
And and that's when it becomes like particularly uneasy for you to say, like, well, these players shouldn't be played for Daymon.
The key moment came in July of twenty eighteen. This is the straw that broke the camel's back.
Here's what happened. Sanford had this star football player and he was supposed to go to this media day in Los Angeles where lots of football players were going to talk to reporters. But Stanford star player didn't go because he was going to summer school trying to get through his premed courses. Football star wanted to be a doctor. And then people complained that this student athlete didn't go talk to the reporters because he was going to class instead.
I remember reading it and tweeting about it and being like this is just disgusting. I don't feel comfortable supporting this. I'm probably not going to watch anymore. And then, you know, it's like once you say things out loud, then you have to really, you know, you can no longer pretend.
And so after that, I stopped watching for real. Having watched the Stanford game since.
Wow. Recently in California did pass a law saying that college athletes will be able to get some endorsement money, you know, for like choose video games. So there has been some movement toward kind of paying student athletes.
Then the pandemic hits and things get more intense. College athletes realize they might be risking their lives by playing this fall. And here's where Damon's prediction about the future comes in, about the rules. He says college players may think about the risks they're taking and they may look at professional athletes who are represented by unions and negotiate for safety measures with their leagues. And the college athletes may say we want that kind of bargaining power.
Basically, the way that it goes is that they say we're not going to play. They get everyone to agree. On a team or some unit to not play, and then they force the university or the NCAA to try to meet them at a table and negotiate, and Damon says their safety concerns might lead them to negotiate, to get paid.
So my prediction for January 1st, 2022, I'm going to be bold and optimistic here. OK, NCAA college athletes. Are able to collectively bargain, have union representation like in other professional level sports, so that was Damon's prediction.
And then like three days after we talked hundreds of athletes in the PAC 12, the league that includes Stanford issued this set of very union like demands about safety and racial justice and getting a share of the revenue that their sports generate getting paid. So it seems like the world is already starting to move in the direction Damon predicted.
By the way, the PAC 12 has since postponed its football season, but some other college football league's do still plan on playing this fall.
After the break, something possibly good about working from home. Also masks.
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Listen. Every day. OK, so we are imagining it is the after times the pandemic is gone. The world is back to whatever the world is back to. You're walking down a crowded street while you're having a FaceTime visit with your doctor and you have a media love in your hand. The question here is, is anyone wearing a mask? This one we can do pretty fast.
Hello. Hi, it's Jacob Goldstein. Oh, hi, Jake. How are you?
I talked about this with Yusheng Wang. He's a professor at MIT who's been thinking a lot about this. And he says when he was a teenager in Beijing in the 70s, people wore masks all the time. They did it whenever pollution got bad in other parts of Asia. It's been common for a long time for people to wear masks when they're sick to prevent spreading disease.
So we saw that in Asia. We saw that in Asia, where you see so many people doing the same thing, you tell yourself, oh, that's a normal thing to do, right?
Will it be normal in the US, too? Like if you think you might have the flu, but you have to go out, will you maybe wear a mask so you don't make other people sick during the flu season?
Like we give back vaccination and all of that. Maybe in the future people say, well, I have another tool kit, which is a mask.
So here's the testable hypothesis. Yeah. In January 20, 22. Yeah. Hopefully I'll be back taking the subway to work again. OK, I'm taking the subway every day for a week. At rush hour I will see at least one person wearing a mask. You're on board with that?
I'm on board with that.
I think normalising mask wearing is a huge part of this current situation.
You tell yourself, oh, that's a normal thing to do.
I just wear a mask. Yeah, obviously I'll wear a mask as robust.
Yeah, yeah, yeah. OK, last one, we've heard a lot about working from home, clearly it has made work harder for a lot of people, but it also made it easier for some people, like some people with disabilities, who have a hard time getting into an office or just working and being in an office. I talked about this with Carol Glaser. She is the president of the National Organization on Disability.
Wait a minute, wait a minute. Hold on. I just need to let my son know, Jacob, that Carol, I'm recording something that's going to be on the radio, so you can't be talking out here, OK? OK. All right. I have a young adult child with disabilities who's got a lot of activities going on on Zoom right now.
Carol says people with disabilities have historically been underemployed. Before the pandemic, only about 30 percent had a job. And then when layoffs and furloughs started this spring, she says people with disabilities were among the first to get let go. More than a million lost their jobs.
So, yes, people with disabilities are losing their jobs at disproportionate rates and in comparison to the rest of the population.
But Carroll says there may be one good thing to come out of all of this before the pandemic. Carol says employers would say all kinds of things about what a job entailed that kind of left people with disabilities out of the running. They would say like, oh, no, you can't do this job. What exactly would they say?
Oh, we need you to be in the office. We we need you to be interacting face to face with your colleagues. You know, our work depends on personal contact. So those were the excuses, you know.
Yeah. I mean, I've even I've heard them again. You really need to be you need to be in the office.
You have to be able to look each other in the eye. You have to be able to be in each other's proximity. And so all of these things were some of the what we now know were myths. In some cases, nobody ever challenged them. We never thought, oh, let's try it a new way.
And then this year, lots and lots of companies did try it a new way.
They suddenly had a lot of workers working from home and in many cases, companies realized it could work.
And so in many ways, for people with disabilities, this is a welcome to my world situation, because people with disabilities have indeed been saying for years that this job or that job could be done from home.
Carol says now that companies have had some experience with working from home, they've seen it happen. They know it's possible it didn't break their companies. Carol says a lot of companies are no longer going to be able to say something like, oh, you need to be in an office to do this job. And the hope is that this would mean more jobs for people with disabilities.
There are, of course, many, many changes in the world that we didn't talk about on today's show, you can hear a few more ways the world has changed on our sister show, the indicator they did an episode a few days ago talking about everything from cigarette smoking to energy use. That episode is called Five More Ways Life Has Changed. It was published on Wednesday. Also, we're almost done with Planet Money Summer School. You can still catch up and test yourself with the summer school.
Final quiz. If you pass it, you will get a real fake diploma. You can find the quiz and all the episodes at NPR. Again, PM Summer School. That's NPR's Margot P.M. Summer School. Today Show was produced by Adam Barnes' with help from The Yagur. Alex Goldmark is our supervising producer and Bryant or edits the show you and your book being right here. I do. Thank you for asking. I wrote a book. You wrote a book.
It's called Money The True Story of a Made Up Thing. It's like Planet Money, but a book comes out on September 8th. You can preorder it. Now, if you like this episode, chat with the friend. I'm Sarah Gonzalez. I'm Jacob Goldstein. This is NPR. Thanks for listening. A quick one. OK, handshakes, after all this feature, the rule be that you shake somebody's hands that you don't know, you don't shake anyone's hands ever.
You think you think that's they really think done forever. Forever.
I think I'm going to take the other side of this one. I think the handshake is going to come back. What about just like that?
You know, like the head nod, like, hey, what's up, man?
Like State of the Union, the president walks into Congress and just does the stuff. Yeah. Chin lift to all the congresspeople. Yeah. And like, you know, like it's a dream that's normalized the the head nod handshake.
So I'm actually doing it as I do. I did everything. Yeah. We'll get a crick in my neck.
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