Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Enough WuFlu for You? Part 3 - Schools and Other Pure Politics

The mildew in the digital fridge is getting out of hand, again. 

Schools. Bombshell audio of LA County Public Health Director saying schools won’t open until after November election. Heaven forfend they should allow Trump a victory before the election. AllahPundit at Hot Air whines Hoo Boy: America’s Worst Mayor Delays Reopening NYC Public Schools Again, Just Days Before Classes Were Set To Start. America's worst mayor? That's a high bar, but I think De Blasio can jump it. 

It’s unimaginable that the country’s biggest public-school system is still figuring things out three weeks into September given how the availability of in-class instruction will dictate families’ lives for the next nine months, beginning with whether mom and dad can get back to work. And inexcusable that, rather than stick to a firm date for reopening and then adjust as infections arise, they keep scrambling people’s plans by delaying reopening at the last second.

Alhouse, "Nationwide, six teachers have died of Covid-19, reports Katie Shepherd in the Washington Post. 'It isn’t clear whether any of the teachers were infected at school,' she writes."

"Actually, it is clear that only one of the six had any contact with students before becoming sick. In Mississippi, Nacoma James, 42, coached football over the summer till he developed coronavirus-like symptoms and went into quarantine. It’s not known how he was infected. Some of the others had attended a teacher work day at school or visited their classroom, but none had taught students face to face...."
And from WUWT, COVID-19: evidence shows that transmission by schoolchildren is low. No wonder The Pandemic Has Parents Fleeing From Schools—Maybe Forever (the Atlantic). WaPoo, Opinion, Want to buy schools time? Open the windows.

Lockdown Fever. WSJ, New Thinking on Covid Lockdowns: They’re Overly Blunt and Costly. Michael Barone at WaEx, Were the lockdowns a mistake?. Julie Kelly at the Tennessee Star, Commentary: We Have Had Enough Lockdown. Dennis Prager at PJ Media, The Lockdown Has Gone From a Mistake to a Crime. Sky News, Coronavirus: For every three COVID-19 deaths, lockdown may have caused another two. In my extended circle I know of three people who may have died from the lockdowns, and only one who died of WuFlu. Da Tech Guy, Do these two developments prove the Coronavirus lockdowns were unnecessary? Ace, While the US and Most of Europe Locked Down and Destroyed Their Economies, Sweden Stayed Open -- and Now Has Herd-Immunity and Only Fourteen People in ICU for Covid "Trust your Elites." Da Fed, America’s Biggest Threat Isn’t Coronavirus, It’s Congress’s Response To It. To be fair, isn't Congress always America's greatest threat?

If it weren't for double standards, they'd have no standards at all. AllahPundit again. Chris Cuomo On Pandemic Restrictions: Look, Protesting Is More Urgent Than Going To Church. Da Blaze, San Fran keeps private gyms closed, but has reopened city-owned gyms. Furious owners call out city leaders. Michael Walsh at ET, Pandemic Gives Petty Tyrants Control. Speaking of petty tyrants, Gov. Whitmer: Michigan in 'relatively early phases' with COVID-19  Horowitz: Politicians indicating that flu season is the new threshold for emergency powers & panic. From da Hill, Fauci warns US needs to 'hunker down' for fall, winter: 'It's not going to be easy'. Paula Bolyard, PJ Media, Get Ready for COVID-19 FEMA Camps.  Da Mail, Cuomo signs NYC restaurants' death warrant: Governor says he won't allow city to reopen indoor dining because it 'doubles amount of bars and there's no one to enforce the rules' - so how come other major cities are managing? Sundance,  Email Records Show Democrat Nashville Mayor Hid COVID-19 Data To Intentionally Inflict Economic Hardship on Bars and Restaurants…  Roger Simon at ET,  Nashville Government Lied About the Coronavirus—Does Everybody? Petty tyrants will never give up control without a fight. 

If there’s been one constant in progressive advocacy across this pandemic, it is that anyone who is worried about the economic downside of COVID restrictions is anti-science and doesn’t care if people die. Over the last few days, though, Trump has been slammed for the economic costs of the pandemic and the response to it.

Now, it’s certainly possible to say the best way to boost the economy is to defeat the virus, but, as David Harsanyi notes below, Democrats haven’t really explained how they would have fought the virus except with longer and more pervasive lockdowns, measures that surely would have meant that more businesses would be bankrupt right now and more people out of work. A couple of nights ago, there was a compelling video segment on the struggles of small businesses. But when people protested Governor Whitmer’s lockdown a few months ago, in large part because they wanted to go back to work and feared the consequences of the lockdown for small businesses, they were hooted down as goons and Nazis.

The upshot is that Democrats wanted more lockdowns and now are blaming Trump for the deleterious economic effects of lockdowns.

WaEx, 'Future is very bright': South Dakota unemployment rate shrinking after Kristi Noem refused lockdown measures. Sundance at CTH, Federal Judge Rules Pennsylvania “Lock-Down Rules”, and COVID Compliance Decrees, Unconstitutional… WSJ, As Coronavirus Rebounds, Europe Rejects New Lockdowns "European countries bet on personal responsibility and targeted measures, instead of sweeping restrictions that froze their economies in the spring" Personal responsibility? What a novel thought! Vodka Pundit, Cringeworthy Study Debunked: There Was No 'Sturgis Superspreader' COVID-19 Event. Blueberry! The Sturgis “super spreader” kerfuffle and what it says about contact tracing

Here's some actual science:

We know that wearing a mask outside health care facilities offers little, if any, protection from infection... "It is also clear that masks serve symbolic roles. Masks are not only tools, they are also talismans that may help increase health care workers’ perceived sense of safety, well-being, and trust in their hospitals. " 

And cloth masks are even less effective, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4420971/?fbclid=IwAR1xBSypYCVXHlTXlCLQumiOciiWL6qchK0mK-OXv3AyITOPtFmNtoB9iPo and may in fact INCREASE your odds of infection by slowing air exchange.

And yet another: https://aapsonline.org/mask-facts/?fbclid=IwAR0VpDD0wrEL1NDPZ-6GmDmz2jq7YUtEVdLo2cAh2y8WJC1oxcHGX07NqR0 Conclusion: Wearing masks will not reduce SARS-CoV-2.

Here's another: https://www.cidrap.umn.edu/news-perspective/2020/04/commentary-masks-all-covid-19-not-based-sound-data?fbclid=IwAR1lfzfwrFI-CEiy4WPD7ChiPqfBeXAvsalnD7ggpbE2YxOx-3sRjni3HhY 

Behind the Black,  COVID-19 numbers surge after mask mandate in Hawaii. At best, they didn't stop it. 

Pirate's Cove, Joe Biden Admits His National Mask Mandate Would Be Unconstitutional. Althouse, "But here’s the deal, the federal government — there’s a constitutional issue whether federal government could issue [a mask] mandate. I don’t think constitutionally they could, so I wouldn’t issue a mandate." From "Biden walks back national mask mandate over 'constitutional issue'" (NY Post).

Yahoo asks Will we be wearing masks forever? Here's what experts think. Experts like to hear themselves talk.

NYT, cited from Hot Air, Does Wearing Glasses Protect You From Coronavirus? If the eyes are a significant source of infection, I don't see why not.

In one hospital in Suizhou, China, 276 patients were admitted over a 47 day period, but only 16 patients — less than 6 percent — had myopia or nearsightedness that required them to wear glasses for more than eight hours a day. By comparison, more than 30 percent of similarly aged people in the region needed glasses for nearsightedness, earlier research had shown.

And then there's the "Trump Downplayed the Virus" meme. WaPoo, Trump acknowledges he intentionally downplayed deadly coronavirus, says effort was to reduce panic but as sundance at CTH points out, the Washington Post January 2020: POTUS “Hyping” COVID Panic – September 2020: POTUS “Downplayed” COVID Panic…
Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden led the way, quickly attacking what he called Trump’s “record of hysteria, xenophobia and fear-mongering” after the travel restrictions were announced. A Jan. 31 article in The New York Times quoted epidemiologist Dr. Michael Osterholm as saying that Trump’s decision to restrict travel from China was “more of an emotional or political reaction.”

In March, another Democratic presidential candidate, Sen. Bernie Sanders, conspicuously insisted at a Fox News town hall that he wouldn’t consider closing the U.S. border to prevent the spread of coronavirus, before condemning what he called the president’s xenophobia. The overwhelming narrative was that President Trump’s proactive measures were fear-mongering and intended to produce panic.

Now we fast-forward to today… predictably, as if on the anticipated cue…. the exact same outlet, the Washington Post, now says President Trump “downplayed” the danger.
[…] At that time, Trump was telling the nation that the virus was no worse than a seasonal flu, predicting it would soon disappear and insisting that the U.S. government had it totally under control. It would be several weeks before he would publicly acknowledge that the virus was no ordinary flu and that it could be transmitted through the air.
So in January, February and March, 2020, the best political attack position was to say that President Trump was overreacting and hyping panic. Now in September 2020 the best political attack position is to say he down-played the danger. (read more)

RCP:  Fauci: The Response Of Trump Admin Has Been Impressive, I Can't Imagine Anybody Could Be Doing More and Stephan Kruiser, PJ Meida,  Trump-Hating Media Lying More and More to Keep Low-Info Dems In a Rage

Author Bob Woodward has crawled out from under his Democratic patron rock with a book he hopes will permanently damage President Trump’s hopes for re-election. He accuses Trump of downplaying the coronavirus threat in the early days of this year. Like the “very fine people” thing, this is based on deliberately misrepresenting something the president said, the context of which is plain to any fourth-grader.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, the man who was with Trump during DAILY PRESIDENTIAL BRIEFINGS ABOUT THE VIRUS, came to the president’s defense. Matt wrote about it here.

The Post Millennial  Woodward 'bombshell' falls flat as Fauci defends Trump

"So I may not be tuned in to the right thing that they're talking about, but I didn't really see any discrepancies between what he told us and what we told him and what he came out publicly and said."

Predictably, then Fauci had to come out with something to please his "base",  USA Today, Fauci: Trump downplaying COVID-19 threat 'not a good thing'; expect no 'normality' until 2021, presumably after a Democrat is elected. Stat: Public trust in CDC, Fauci, and other top health officials is evaporating, poll finds. Good. Trusting experts is not a good idea. Listen, but check yourself. Experts always have an agenda. Bloomberg whines, ‘Follow the Science’ Isn’t a Covid-19 Strategy "Policy makers can follow the same facts to different conclusions."

Personally, I think Trump hit it about right, being upbeat, while doing his best to slow down the importation of the virus, while building capacity to deal with it. It also turned out to be far less serious than had been feared, with a infection death rate slightly higher than a bad annual flu, and not being able to infect a substantial portion of the population.

Katie Pavlich at Town Hall, Top Biden Advisor: Yeah, We Really Screwed Up Swine Flu and are Lucky More Americans Didn't Die. Politico, Biden has fought a pandemic before. It did not go smoothly.

“It is purely a fortuity that this isn’t one of the great mass casualty events in American history,” Ron Klain, who was Biden’s chief of staff at the time, said of H1N1 in 2019. “It had nothing to do with us doing anything right. It just had to do with luck. If anyone thinks that this can’t happen again, they don’t have to go back to 1918, they just have to go back to 2009, 2010 and imagine a virus with a different lethality, and you can just do the math on that.”

AllahPundit, Biden Spox Really Didn’t Want To Give Straight Answers In Today’s Fox News Interview and Jazz Shaw at Hot Air, Joe Biden Would Really Like You To Forget That He Opposed Trump’s China Travel Ban. Not gonna happen, Joe.

Matt Margolis, PJ Media, These Joe Biden Flip Flops on COVID-19 Prove He's Incapable of Leading During the Pandemic. Dan Payne at JTN, Biden's virus attacks face harsh reality: worst death tolls are in Democrat-run states "Top three states for total and population-adjusted deaths are run by Democratic governors, state legislators."WSJ, Cuomo Called All The Shots In New York’s COVID Disaster and AllahPundit at Hot Air, Cuomo Hits Back At Trump: Under My Leadership, New Yorkers “Flattened The Curve”. Worst outbreak in the United States. LI, DOJ conducting probe into nursing home COVID-19 deaths in four states
The U.S. Department of Justice announced it has opened a preliminary inquiry into the COVID-19 nursing home policies of New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Michigan that it says “may have resulted in the deaths of thousands of elderly nursing home residents.”

Matt Margolis, This Obama-Biden Administration Failure Killed More Americans Than COVID-19

. . . more than 300,000 veterans died while waiting for care from Obama and Biden’s Department of Veterans Affairs, according to an Inspector General report released in September 2015.

 That's different because, shut up!

and in the old Miscellaneous category: FEE, CDC’s Eviction Moratorium Is an Unconstitutional Power Grab. I agree, but I think it would be wise for landlords to be very slow to evict, as it might be difficult to find suitable new tenants during this periods. I'm not yet ready to call 2021 a Jubilee in the biblical sense, but we might get there. Maybe just have a do over for 2020. 

The Atlantic admits If You Can Grocery Shop in Person, You Can Vote in Person "Experts now say the health risk of casting an in-person ballot is relatively low. Will Democrats tell their voters that?" No, they're counting on fear to get the number of mail in ballots high for fraudulent purposes. The War Room, Bannon: Democrats Have Scared Their Voters into Not Coming Out to Vote on Election Day.

Insty, NANCY PELOSI, MASS MURDERER? Shot: Pelosi in August: ‘People will die’ if coronavirus stimulus talks drag into late September., Chaser, today: Dems Block GOP Covid Aid Package.

City Journal, The Covid Story That Sports Media Won’t Tell "Despite heavy coverage of every positive test, remarkably few serious cases have been recorded among pro athletes." Of course, they're mostly young and healthy, and this virus preys almost exclusively on the old and sick.

JTN, Oregon program allocates millions in federal coronavirus funds exclusively to black residents. All three of them. Quite, likely illegal, but forget it Jake, it's Oregon. 

Just One Minute, Plenty Of Blame To Go Around

Ross Douthat ruminates on how much blame for the COVID debacle should be shouldered by Trump.

He mentions the February testing debacle at the CDC and the slow-walking of Emergency Use Authorizations by the FDA and links to a ProPublica piece. The NY Times and the WaPo had similar coverage and a similar theme - it was careerists, not Trump, that let the process drift.

Which brings us to a "Damned if you do, damned if you don't" point - Trump was not elected on a "Trust The Bureaucrats" platform. Yet that's what he did in February. Ooops. But when he learns his mistake, shifts gears and starts pounding the table for plasma, vaccines, or hydroxychloroquine, the usual suspects gasp that he is politicizing the process rather than trusting the professionals.

Post Millennial BREAKING: CDC defies Trump's executive order, moves forward with critical race theory indoctrination. In the life of every bureaucracy comes a point at which the Vietnamese village principle reigns. It must be destroyed to be saved. Jonathon Swan at Axios whines about  The Trump-Navarro mind meld on the FDA another agency past it's 'use by' date. 

Mercury News, Stanford doctors take aim at former colleague Scott Atlas, Trump’s new adviser on the COVID-19 pandemic "The former chief of neuroradiology is harming public health, according to public letter health". Atlas thinks the lockdowns are a problem. It's good to present competing ideas.

Town Hall, Wait, What? Biden Just Said Something Absolutely Crazy About COVID Deaths, 200,000,000? Well, who hasn't been off by a factor of one thousand occasionally? 

Linked at 357 Magnum in the Wednesday Link Roundup. The Wombat has Rule 5 Sunday: Elizabeth Taylor ready for your digital enjoyment.


  1. A fair number of the links just point to "Blogger.com"

    1. See the section that starts:

      "If it weren't for double standards, they'd have no standards at all."

    2. Thanks. Blogger has a "New improved" interface, and I'm still getting used to it. It'll take me a while to straighten those out.

    3. OK, I think I found them all and straightened them out. Fortunately, I don't discard links immediately after using them. I do wonder why it was mostly in one section, though.