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Down for the count? 败得很惨

中国日报网 2020-07-24 14:47


Reader question:

Please explain "down for the count", as in "Donald Trump is down for the count."

My comments:

Oh, a boxing term.

They are probably talking about Trump's poll numbers. Donald Trump, the American President, has fumbled - bigly, to use his word - the coronavirus pandemic test and in consequence seen his poll numbers taking a dive.

Trump, a Republican, trails Joe Biden, a Democrat, by double digits, 10, 12, even 16 percent in various polls. Historically, few people, if any, have been able to come back to win after falling behind by such margins.

That's why they say he's down for the count, meaning he's failing badly, probably never to recover.

Let me explain. In boxing, when a boxer is knocked down, down to the canvas or mat or, in plain English, the floor, the referee will step in to prevent him from being further attacked. The referee will order the other fighter to return to his corner, then administer the count. He counts out loud, one, two, three...

Usually, the referee counts to eight before the fighter on the floor gets back on his feet. Then the referee calls for play to resume. If the fighter on the floor fails to get to his feet by the count of eight, meaning eight seconds, then the referee waves his hands and declares "game over". The fighter who's been knocked down to the floor is declared the loser, the opponent who has thrown the knock-down punch declared the winner.

Yes, "down" in "down for the count" means down to the floor; "for the count" means "for the count of eight". At this stage, the fighter can also be described as "down but not out", meaning he's down but not totally defeated.

Out, meaning out of consciousness, out of the count, out of the game, is the same "out" we see in such boxing terms as "knocked out", "out for the count" and, indeed, "down but not out" and "down and out".

In other words, "down for the count" means the fighter is knocked down for the count, but not counted out yet. He has eight seconds to get back up - in order to get another crack at it. After he's counted out, however, the match is formerly declared a knockout, meaning an emphatic win for the opponent.

So, therefore, Trump being "out for the count" means he's beaten badly, is close to total defeat and is unlikely to recover, as boxers who have been knocked down or knocked out for the count seldom recover to win the match.

There are exceptions, of course.

Of course. Trump, though, is hopefully no exception. Actually I look forward to seeing him counted out literally when the votes are tallied in November.

All right, media examples of "down for the count" or "out for the count":

1. A Milwaukee woman says she broke her leg riding an electric scooter downtown.

Solana Ramos wrote on a GoFundMe page started by her friend, Tomika Vukovic, that she hit a pothole near Wisconsin and Water. The injury required surgery, and she’s facing months of physical therapy.

She is down for the count for the foreseeable future, three to five months probably,” Vukovic said. “There’s a lot of good people in the world that come into problems, and she’s one of those people.”

Ramos wrote she has mostly managed to get by financially, but for others who suffer scooter injuries, it could get more complicated.

Marco Briceno, a personal risk manager, says car insurance will likely not cover any medical bills incurred from riding a scooter, because auto policies only apply to vehicles with four wheels.

- Milwaukee woman says she broke her leg riding an electric scooter downtown, CBS58.com, August 20, 2019.

2. Unless you've been living in hiding for the last month, you already know that the COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak is a genuine threat to the global economy and corporate earnings -- notably in the aerospace sector. Indeed, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) projections for 2020 are now building in scenarios that suggest a significant impact on airline profitability and, in turn, aerospace stocks in general. Let's take a closer look.

It's a simple fact that airline profitability is the key to the commercial aerospace industry. If passenger traffic and load factors are increasing, airlines are likely to make more profits. In turn, more profitability usually translates into aircraft orders for Boeing (NYSE:BA) and Airbus, and that means more orders for original equipment manufacturers like General Electric (NYSE:GE) and United Technologies (NYSE:RTX). Moreover, if more passengers are traveling, there will be an increased demand for aerospace aftermarket parts.

Of course, the reverse is also true, and the last thing anyone in the aerospace industry wants to see is declining passenger traffic -- usually measured in terms of revenue passenger kilometers (RPK). A look at the chart below shows that it's been a great decade for the commercial aerospace industry, with a never-before-seen run of profitability driven by passenger growth. For reference, I've included the original IATA forecast for passenger growth and airline profitability. More on that in a moment.


While it's clear that aerospace stocks' earnings estimates for 2020 are under threat and will probably have to be taken down, it doesn't mean the industry is out for the count. On the contrary, new case growth appears to be on a downward trend in some of the earliest-affected countries like China, South Korea, and Japan -- a sign that the outbreak is starting to be controlled on a local basis. If this occurs in the rest of the world in the coming weeks, aerospace stocks are likely to bounce back strongly.

There is a case for buying into the industry right now in anticipation of a recovery, but anyone buying in must appreciate that the current earnings estimates for 2020 are likely to be downgraded. In other words, don't buy in without expecting some volatility along the way.

- Here's Why Aerospace Stocks Are Under Threat in 2020, Fool.com, Mar 12, 2020.

3. Movie theaters are down for the count right now, but when they open again following the current coronavirus pandemic, they may be free to attend at the start. With public gatherings essentially banned across the country to slow the spread of COVID-19, movie theaters have become ghost towns, with tens of thousands of employees furloughed or laid off due to the lack of revenue. Many movie studios have responded by postponing releases of their blockbuster films, raising the question of how movie theaters will survive the coronavirus.

The National Association of Theatre Owners (NATO) is witnessing firsthand what happens when the movie industry undergoes a complete shutdown. NATO is lobbying Congress in an attempt to secure funds and loans to keep movie theaters across the country in business as the finish line for the coronavirus pandemic remains far out of sight. The organization is also following developments from around the world in an attempt to figure out how to move forward when this is all over.

In an interview with Screen Rant, NATO's chief communications officer Patrick Corcoran suggested movie theaters may open for free when they're back up and running again. That idea is taking a cue from some theaters that have been able to reopen in China and have done so at no cost to the consumer while showing old movies. If movie theaters have the stability of money coming in the form of loans or a bailout, it may not be a bad idea to remind consumers why it's exciting to see movies on a big screen or with a large group of people.

- Movie Theaters May Open For Free When Coronavirus Shutdown Ends, ScreenRant.com, March 25, 2020.


About the author:

Zhang Xin is Trainer at chinadaily.com.cn. He has been with China Daily since 1988, when he graduated from Beijing Foreign Studies University. Write him at: zhangxin@chinadaily.com.cn, or raise a question for potential use in a future column.

(作者:张欣 编辑:丹妮)


Fool proof? 万无一失


Cancel culture? 抵制文化


Body blow? 重击


Out and about 外出走动


Crystal ball 水晶球


Trump's enemies are scrubs 小人物

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