Reason Roundup

Coronavirus: Is It Time To Panic?

Plus: PragerU loses YouTube lawsuit, layoffs abound in Silicon Valley, and more...

|

Media say yes, experts say no. COVID-19, known as the coronvirus, will wreak widespread changes on American society and usher in "the end of affluence politics," suggests Matt Stoller in Wired. "Disruption to everyday life might be severe," Nancy Messonnier of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warned on Tuesday. On Wednesday, President Donald Trump announced that Vice President Mike Pence would be the coronavirus czar.

Cases continue to rise in China, South Korea, Japan, Italy, and Iran, with new cases cropping up in Austria, France, Germany, Greece, Switzerland, and elsewhere. And countries around the world are shutting down schools and travel in response.

So is it time to panic?

The number of U.S. cases remains low. The CDC has confirmed 60 cases, with only one (discovered yesterday) of unknown origin. Fourteen cases are in people who recently traveled to China or were in close contact with someone who had. "The rest were either repatriated individuals who fled the vicinity of the virus's origin in China on State Department-chartered planes or else were rescued from the disastrous Diamond Princess cruise ship outbreak," notes Olivia Messer at The Daily Beast.

And while experts are expecting more cases, many are not that worried. For instance, the UCLA epidemiologist Jeffrey Klausner told Messer:

It's possible to say suddenly we'll have 20 or 30 cases from one particular place. People should expect that, but people should not be overly concerned about that. If we were testing everyone for the common cold, we would find hundreds of thousands of cases.

Alessandro Vespignani, an infectious disease modeler at Northeastern University, told Science:

This has a range of outcomes from the equivalent of a very bad flu season to something that is perhaps a little bit worse than that.

Worldwide, the average death rate for the disease remains unclear, confounded by both uneven reporting and a constantly shifting number of confirmed cases. Death rates may be also be inflated if less severe cases of the virus are going unconfirmed.

"In Italy, roughly 3% of the confirmed number of cases ended in death as of Monday," notes Kenneth Rapoza at Forbes. "But the number of new cases jumped early Tuesday to 270," bringing the death rate down to 2.6 percent.

In South Korea, the fatality rate so far has been 0.9 percent; in Iran, by contrast, it's an astounding 14 percent. "Outside medical experts said reporting on the total number of cases of infection in Iran was possibly lagging behind reporting on deaths," says NBC.

An analysis of coronavirus cases in China found a fatality rate of 2.3 percent, though rates varied wildly by age. "No deaths occurred in those aged 9 years and younger, but cases in those aged 70 to 79 years had an 8% fatality rate and those aged 80 years and older had a fatality rate of 14.8%," reports MarketWatch.

It's hard to get a clear picture of how coronavirus compares to previous high-profile disease threats, since so many people benefit from either spreading or squelching fear and so many others seem intent on using it to push pet political issues (e.g., "Coronavirus makes the case for Medicare-for-all").

"The World Health Organization (WHO) still avoided using the word 'pandemic' to describe the burgeoning crisis today, instead talking about 'epidemics in different parts of the world,'" note Science writers Jon Cohen and Kai Kupferschmidt. "But many scientists say that regardless of what it's called, the window for containment is now almost certainly shut."

Some think containment was never a realistic option to begin with:

many epidemiologists have claimed that travel bans buy little extra time, and WHO doesn't endorse them. The received wisdom is that bans can backfire, for example, by hampering the flow of necessary medical supplies and eroding public trust. And as the list of affected countries grows, the bans will become harder to enforce and will make less sense: There is little point in spending huge amounts of resources to keep out the occasional infected person if you already have thousands in your own country.

In any event, "the fight now is to mitigate, keep the health care system working, and don't panic," Vespignani told Science.


FREE MINDS

No, YouTube isn't the government, a federal court affirmed yesterday. The case stems from a lawsuit filed by Prager University, which objected to the restricted viewing conditions that YouTube placed on some of the organization's videos. "PragerU runs headfirst into two insurmountable barriers—the First Amendment and Supreme Court precedent," writes Ninth Circuit Judge M. Margaret McKeown. More here.


FREE MARKETS

San Francisco startups are shedding employees rapidly. "More than 30 startups have slashed more than 8,000 jobs over the past four months," The New York Times reports. It's particularly bad in the legal weed industry:

Perhaps the most drastic turn has happened among cannabis start-ups, which rode a wave of exuberance in recent years as countries like Canada and Uruguay and several U.S. states loosened laws that criminalized the drug. Last year, more than 300 cannabis companies raised $2.6 billion in venture capital, according to PitchBook.

Then in mid-2019, investors started doubting whether the industry could deliver on its lofty promises when some publicly traded cannabis companies were tarred by illegal growing scandals and regulatory crackdowns. Start-ups like Caliva, a cannabis producer; Eaze, a delivery service; and NorCal Cannabis Company, another producer, have together cut hundreds of members of their staffs in recent months.

"A lot of companies are not going to make it through this year," said Brendan Kennedy, chief executive of Tilray, a cannabis producer that went public in 2018. Mr. Kennedy said he was stopping spending on new projects to survive the shakeout.

Notes SFist:

The poster child of the fall is probably the billion-dollar bust of WeWork…and we told you last week that cash-bleeding delivery services DoorDash, Postmates, and UberEats have all discussed mergers. The Times reminds us there have been significant recent layoffs at 23andMe, Quora and Mozilla, plus a few of those robot companies we love to hate like robot barista startup Cafe X and robot pizza purveyors Zume, which has ceased delivery after burning through more than $400 million in investments….

The once-incredibly trendy scooter sector is taking its lumps too, as the biggest player Lime has pulled out of cities and laid off staff.


QUICK HITS

  • The FBI has arrested a Cincinnati city council member for allegedly taking bribes.
  • Canadian fashion CEO Peter Nygard is being investigated for allegations of sex trafficking. His spokesperson told The Wall Street Journal that Nygard "welcomes the federal investigation and expects his name to be cleared. He has not been charged, is not in custody and is cooperating with the investigation."

NEXT: Encryption Foes in Washington Won't Give Up

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. …President Donald Trump announced that Vice President Mike Pence would be the coronavirus czar.

    Yet he refuses to be in a room with the virus unchaperoned.

    1. Just for the record; he did not say czar.
      He said in charge of the efforts.
      Czar is a democratic term to get the serfs used to dictators.

      1. Also, he didn’t want Bernie to get any ideas.

        1. The last time Bernie had an idea kids were still selling matchsticks on street corners.

          1. “The last time Bernie had an idea kids were still selling matchsticks on street corners.”

            That’s not really true. Bernie is full In on spending hundreds of billions of dollars on climate change.

    2. Hello.

      Even though some of you don’t deserve it.

  2. The received wisdom is that bans can backfire, for example, by hampering the flow of necessary medical supplies and eroding public trust.

    Globalists want you to get the virus!

    1. There’s an Asian influenza
      Infecting us all by the scores
      And it’s turning into pneumonia
      We must go out once more
      There’s a full moon howling at the night
      And each bark is much worse than its bite
      So we must go out and dance around
      Yes we must go out tonight
      La Grippe!

  3. The “panic” is pure politics being pushed by idiots that assume everyone else is an idiot too and, therefore, somehow, “orange man bad.”

    1. Well pussy grabber is bad, and is therefore the rightful recipient for any sort of blame. Especially in an election year.

    2. Everything is a conspiracy against dear leader. He is simultaneously all powerful and a victim.

      1. When Democrat leaders denounced Trump, in lockstep, for purportedly bungling the government’s response to the virus and, as a result, basically destroying all human civilization … ten seconds after Trump stepped away from the podium … yea, I think it’s fair to say idiots are conspiring to stoke the flames of panic for the sake of politics.

        1. the left still blames Reagan for “inaction” to aides when there was nothing he could do the CDC was working on it but at the time the only thing to do was not share needle and don’t screw around. and Like with corona virus there is nothing the president can do other than what is already being done. but its still his fault

          1. And the biggest reason AIDS was so deadly to the gay community is that the gay community did everything it could to keep the CDC from warning people about the disease and taking public health measures like closing the gay bathhouses and telling gay men to stop having unprotected sex. The gay community didn’t want HIV declared a “gay disease” even though it was raging their own community. What gay leaders did at the start of the outbreak particularly in the Bay Area was mass murder.

          2. He didn’t even mention the disease for 4 years after it was first identified. He specifically forbade his surgeon general from issuing any report on the disease until 1986, 7 years after the disease had been identified. Although he eventually did take action, Reagan absolutely deserves criticism for initial inaction.

            1. He specifically forbade his surgeon general from issuing any report on the disease until 1986, 7 years after the disease had been identified.

              Wonder who was President from 1979-1986.

              1. Reagan ’81 to ’89. Did you have a point?

                1. Your special pleading. If Reagan was responsible for “ignoring it,” as you claim (a claim that you undercut in the very next sentence), then so was Carter.

                  1. The first aids cases were reported in the US in 1981, genius.

                    1. He specifically forbade his surgeon general from issuing any report on the disease until 1986, 7 years after the disease had been identified.

                      What is 1986-7, genius?

                    2. Got me there, bud.

                    3. Yes, 1981, and there was very little known about it for several years. Recall it was gays and Haitians who were most impacted. Of course, some people are impressed with the ‘do something, anything’ response to any problem, or throw money at it. Even in 1991 when Magic Johnson was diagnosed, there was a lot of uncertainty, although treatments were developing. So your trope about Reagan is pure, unadulterated BS.

            2. Hasn’t this shit been debunked?

        2. You mean when he appointed Mike “dinosaurs lived alongside man” Pence to be the Coronavirus response czar? Yeah, I’d say that action deserves criticism. Too bad this president doesn’t believe in science and values loyalty far more than competency.

          1. You’re more likely to lie than not. Cite?

      2. “He is all powerful”

        Only in the corroded minds of lefties where he occupies the same space as the devil.

    3. This is perfect for the Democrats. Trump will ask for money to fight it. They will say no. Then the media will pump up the scare and the Democrats will scream, ‘See? HE DOESN’T CARE! HE’S DANGEROUS. WE MUST IMPEACH!’

      Is this how it works?

      1. No. The opposite.

        The dems say he is not asking for enough money, and load up the bill for the “correct” amount with all the goodies they can to expand the federal powers.
        Then they say he is busting the budget and must be impeached IMMEDIATELY of the country will go communist.
        Then when Bernie wins and the country goes communist, they can say “WE TOLD YOU SO!”

        See the sixties (again):
        They told me if I voted for Goldwater, the US would see race riots, get drawn into an interminable ground war in Asia, and the economy would tank.
        Yet I voted for Goldwater anyway, and they were right.

      2. When he stopped air travel from China, we got 1,000 think pieces about racism and Yellow Peril

        Try googling Yellow Peril

        1. But don’t search it on RedTube…

    4. The panic is Illuminati level manipulation for a planned devaluation of the stock markets.

  4. YouTube, et al, are curating content enough to be liable for what they decide to keep.

    When they all deplatform the same people at the same time, it is clearly coordinated action based on content, see above.

    1. Still don’t understand 1a and property rights, I see.

      More likely than “coordination” (amazing how you trumpkins can spot these conspiracies with such amazing clarity and frequency, unless it’s trump asking a hostile government for assistance right in front of your face) is that praeger, Alex Jones, et al are incredibly unpopular and bring more liability than profitability to social media platforms. It hurts their bottom lines to keep hateful and unpopular trash around, so they all independently make the decision that best serves their interests. You know, the free hand of the market in action.

      1. They are free to remove content. They are liable for any content they don’t remove. The 1a doesn’t guarantee YouTube any freedom from legal liability you and I don’t have.

        1. They are free to remove content. They are liable for any content they don’t remove.

          Incorrect

          1. Nope, if you want the rights of a publisher like the NY Times instead of the obligations of a common carrier like T-Mobile, you have the responsibilities and liabilities of a publisher like the NY Times instead of the protections of a common carrier like T-Mobile.

            1. Repeating something wrong doesn’t make it right.

              1. Saying “you’re wrong” doesn’t make you intelligent.

                1. Calling people stupid also doesn’t suddenly make you right.

                2. $parkY is very dumb, so good default on your part, Ra’s al Gore

          2. “if you want the rights of a publisher like the NY Times instead of the obligations of a common carrier like T-Mobile, you have the responsibilities and liabilities of a publisher like the NY Times”

            This.
            And looking at the issue from a libertarian business perspective, outside of the law, these companies censorship policies should be following the will of their stockholders. They should not be about fulfilling the political whims of their COO.

            1. This

              Is still wishful thinking and not reality.

              these companies censorship policies should be following the will of their stockholders

              How do you know they aren’t?

              1. He doesn’t. It’s all a big conspiracy against the totally innocent patriot, Alex Jones.

                1. Fuck you’re an idiot. This shit can be googled you know.

                  1. The attitudes and wishes of the boards of social media companies can be found on google, and found to be pro alex jones? Well, that’s quite a claim.

              2. Because Alphabet Inc. has never once brought this forward in any of their shareholder meetings. At the 2019 meeting it was actually brought up but was stifled before the proposal stage.

                https://abc.xyz/investor/other/annual-meeting/

                1. It wasn’t stifled, it was voted down. Overwhelmingly. Looks like the board has spoken, and they don’t give a fuck about Alex Jones or his cult.

                  1. “these companies censorship policies should be following the will of their stockholders”

                    “Looks like the board has spoken”

                    You’re pretty fucking stupid.

                    1. You’re pretty fucking stupid. Who do you think the board is? It’s shareholders. Mother was the one arguing that shareholders want alex jones hosted. Not I.

                    2. You lie a lot

  5. “YouTube is a government actor bound by the First Amendment” argument.

    Google owns the government!

    1. If only

      1. Then they truly would have all your data.

  6. Then in mid-2019, investors started doubting whether the industry could deliver on its lofty promises when some publicly traded cannabis companies were tarred by illegal growing scandals and regulatory crackdowns.

    Reason sold them a bill of goods and now they’re paying the price.

  7. The secret FISA court should be forbidden from allowing spying on political campaigns ever again — period!

    Paul playing the best angle he could.

    1. FISA should be disbanded.

  8. What a stupid question. It is never time to panic. Panic is a mad fear, a loss of rational thought. When is it ever a good time to stop thinking? The more dangerous the situation, the more important it is not to panic.

    1. It is time to crack open your neighbors’ skulls and feast on the delicious goop inside.

      1. Unless they’re infected.

        1. Sweet, sweet lamentations…

    2. Easy enough to say until you’re about to be thrown out of an airlock by a Vogon.

    3. But what if most people are incapable of rational thought? You are unfairly discouraging personal freedom, which for most persons is emotional reasoning. They can only oscillate between apathy and panic.

  9. Corona Virus proves Trump is correct on borders and trade.

    On January 31, as the Corona Virus began making the news, Joe Biden said, “We have, right now, a crisis with the Corona Virus. This is no time for Donald Trump’s record of hysteria and xenophobia — hysterical xenophobia — and fear mongering to lead the way instead of science.”

    President Donald John Trump had just imposed travel restrictions on Red China, including the quarantining of travelers returning home.

    Closing the border made sense, which of course is why Biden and the rest of his party oppose it. Their hatred of the president has made them dumber than a kid eating a bag of lead chips.

    1. The people who want to have open borders and ship our entire supply chain to China are now going to blame the spread of a pandemic into this country that is the result of Chinese Communist negligence on the people who object to open borders and shipping our industrial base and supply chain to China.

      Yeah, that makes sense. Sorry, but I don’t think the pandemic is going to fulfill the revenge porn of Trump’s opponents. As long as Trump gets ahead of the news cycle and makes sure the public understands he cares and is making every effort he can to control this thing, the public is not going to blame whatever harm results on Trump. Whatever happens it isn’t going to increase the appeal of the “let anyone in no matter who they are and buy everything from China” crowd.

      Trump is a bit smarter than George W. Bush. Trump isn’t going to sit on his ass in the White House afraid to defend himself and allow the media to slander him with blood libels the way Bush did in Katrina.

      1. Yes. Because clearly the best way to deal with a medical threat re a virus is to get ahead of a news cycle. Let’s keep focused on the only thing that actually matters in DeRpland.

        1. That is part of it. One of the keys to dealing with a public health crisis is to ensure the public has confidence in the efforts to stop it and doesn’t panic. Even effective efforts will fail if the public panics or loses faith in them.

          You really are stupid aren’t you?

          1. John – That is EXACTLY what both China and Iran are doing now. Trying to overtly manage the news cycle

            1. As an aside – this is another sort of issue where I find libertarians useless. But Pirate Parties understand this completely and are far more truly ‘classical liberal’

              1. Yes they are useless. That is because there is more to life than “meh principles”. Every principle has a limit.

                1. Hahaha. Says the guy who thinks life is DeRp.

            2. No. They are not dealing with the crisis and are lying. That is not the same as ensuring the public knows and understands that what you are doing.

              Just stop it. Just post ORANGE MAN BAD. It would be less stupid than what you are saying and it would at least have the virtue of brevity.

              1. China is not ‘dealing with the crisis’? They have probably 200 million people under quarantine or internal travel restriction. They have already built at least four hospitals in Wuhan and are building seven more. That may not be the best action – but it is quite obviously focused on the VIRUS and it is most certainly doing something.

                Of course China and Iran are lying. That’s what ‘managing the news cycle’ IS you fucking moron. And it is exactly what Trump and Kudlow are doing in trying to blow smoke up the stock markets butt (which by the way is NOT an action focused on the virus which I’m certain doesn’t give a shit about the Dow).

                1. What is this Bernie Bro’s point?

                  1. DeRpty DeRpty DeRpty DeRp

                2. Of course China and Iran are lying. That’s what ‘managing the news cycle’ IS you fucking moron.

                  Considering the White House press corps has a vested interest in opportunistic anti-Trumpism, combined with their track record of scare-mongering every time China becomes a vector for a new airborne virus, “managing the news cycle” is exactly what the administration should be doing, you fucking moron.

                  1. DeRpty DeRpty DeRpty DeRp

                    1. Translation: “I can’t refute a damn thing you said.”

                3. Hey, Brainiac, you gotta pick one–

                  Either–

                  China is not ‘dealing with the crisis’? They have probably 200 million people under quarantine or internal travel restriction. They have already built at least four hospitals in Wuhan and are building seven more. That may not be the best action – but it is quite obviously focused on the VIRUS and it is most certainly doing something.

                  Or–

                  Of course China and Iran are lying.

                  Can’t have both, ‘cos one means the other is a lie.

                  1. No you can have both.

                    Doing the thing and the PR/spin/lies about the thing is two entirely different thangs.

      2. The only fallout he’s gonna have to deal with, assuming there isn’t a nationwide outbreak, is the economy taking a dive because of Corona. The market has already been hammered. There will be ripple effects. If the economy can remain steadfast he’s fine. If it spirals, even if because of factors not under his control like Corona, he’s gonna take flak because of it.

        1. If he looks competent dealing with Corona, he won’t even take much flak for that. 911 hammered the economy and George W. Bush got more popular. If the public thinks a President is handling a crisis well, they will support him even if the crisis damages the economy. If they don’t think he is, they will turn on him even if the crisis doesn’t affect the entire country.

          1. He’s already made two incompetent decisions re Covid-19.

            Overruling the CDC re the cruiseline passengers who had tested positive (flying them back to the US on the same plane as the uninfected).

            And the Wuhan evacuation where the US was the only country that evacuated its people without also bringing in supplies for Wuhan. Beggar thy neighbor doesn’t work in an epidemic. In fact it backfires because they will cease to share info.

            And since he – like you – is focused on the ‘news cycle’, the safe bet is he will continue to make bad decisions.

            1. And the Wuhan evacuation where the US was the only country that evacuated its people without also bringing in supplies for Wuhan. Beggar thy neighbor doesn’t work in an epidemic. In fact it backfires because they will cease to share info.

              Yeah, he didn’t send supplies to Wutan. That is totally why this is happening and is totally going to sink him.

              And no one on that flight was infected. And the US wasn’t the only country to do that. As yet, none of that has resulted in any infections.

              So why don’t you do me a favor and just shut the fuck up. We are all full of stupid.

              1. he didn’t send supplies to Wutan. That is totally why this is happening and is totally going to sink him.

                Are you just stupid? Yes – not sending supplies of disposables/etc that we already had makes it more difficult at the margin for Wuhan to deal with their problem. And it sends a loud FYTW message to them. Which they will remember – and pay back to us. Likely via not sharing any info with us re the virus.

                And no one on that flight was infected.

                All those flights have had infected people. 21 so far from the Wuhan evacuations (from 0 known before the flights). 39 so far for the cruiseline evacuation (from 14 known before the flight).

                And no – the decision to evacuate is not a dumb decision. Overruling the CDC re the medical stuff IS – in large part because it should (to any non-DeRp moron) hugely reduce any confidence one should have in how the quarantine on this side will be set up. Hmm – who is more credible re health/virus stuff – Mike Pence or the CDC?!?!?!? WTF

                1. Considering your previous sperg-outs about this being a “warm-weather virus” that will burn itself out by the time summer rolls around, why the fuck are you panicking that Trump isn’t micromanaging this apparent global pandemic to your satisfaction?

                  1. The term is cold-weather virus. And no – that doesn’t mean the virus ‘burns itself out’. It merely means it goes into hibernation so to speak – doesn’t transmit as well from person-to-person. We’ll see whether I’m right about it being a cold-weather virus in the next couple of months when we see what happens in Australia, NZ, Chile, Argentina – which are all now in summertime and soon heading into fall. But if ‘managing the news cycle’ is what is important to DeRps, then it is very safe to assume they will ignore the virus once it drops out of the news cycle this summer.

                    B. I’m not ‘panicking’ at all. Just making very rational observations about what IS known about the virus and what I’ve learned as a history buff re epidemics in history.

                    C. No – micromanagement is NOT needed at this point in the US. It’s actually not even needed during the epidemic. PREPARATION is what is needed now. Followed by highly decentralized/dispersed decisions with both knowledge/supplies available once the epidemic hits. Preferably by people who have a clue not MrMagoo and his politicized clowns.

                2. You do, of course, have links to back this up right?

                3. Hell – just yesterday – Trump defended budget cuts to CDC – I’m a businessperson, I don’t like having thousands of people around when you don’t need them,” Trump said. “When we need them, we can get them back very quickly. So as of now, the HHS Secy is calling for some additional funding to deal with Covid-19 – while Trump is continuing to call for a 16% budget cut.

                  Make that four stupid decisions now. Let’s get out the popcorn for when the decisions will actually have to come fast and furious. Your faith in Dear Leader is infantile.

                  1. Well, direct infusions of concentrated cash does cure aids

                4. Haha. No surprise that that you would think that failure to drop down some free goodies is reason to harbor deadly resentment.

                  You a nasty piece o work, ain’t ya?

            2. 3 bad decisions: Appointing Mike “6,000 year old earth” Pence as the Cornoavirus czar.

            3. Dont know what is stupider… thinking Trump controls every CDC decision or ignoring his outrage over it occurring.

              https://qz.com/1807009/trumps-fury-over-coronavirus-patients-being-repatriated-may-be-justified/

              1. The buck stops here.

                Even that article admits that it was Trump appointees who overruled the CDC. He can’t pretend to be outraged about the decisions of those appointees – and keep those appointees in place – and be immune from criticism.

      3. “The people who want to have open borders and ship our entire supply chain to China”

        …haha. As if you weren’t one of those people arguing during the Occupy WS days that any attempt to rein in companies exploiting overseas labor and tax shelters was an affront to capitalism and the god-CEOs whose brave “risk taking” and “job creation” made life possible for all of us.

    2. What the ban on travel from China did was buy time. With hundreds of thousands crossing into the US ‘without documentation’ every year it is unreasonable to expect that someone with the virus can not enter. By delaying the inevitable, Trump has given manufacturers of protective equipment like face masks time to ramp up production, for local agencies to dust off response plans, for hospitals to set up quarantine procedures, and for Big Pharma to start work on a vaccine.

      1. Time for it to become less contagious as the weather warms up and hopefully time for an effective vaccine to be developed. If they can get a vaccine that is even 70% effective out and get it to every healthcare provider before the fall, they will likely avert any serious catastrophe from this.

    3. Trump was right all along about China. Everyone and their drunk whore step-trans-gendered grandmother knew China has been an international problem along with Iran.

      But they preferred to short sightedly dump on Trump because a) it’s easy and b) fulfills some sort of weird superiority complex fetish.

      China is an authoritarian shit hole led by Winnie the Pooh.

      Take a bow NBA.

      1. Nice.

  10. The Donald Trump 2020 campaign is suing The New York Times.

    This is what a fascist dictatorship looks like: civil action.

    1. The action definitely communicates a disdain for the first amendment, especially when you consider trump’s loudly proclaimed opinions on libel laws and the press being enemies of America.

      Putin is a good guy, but the press are trump’s enemies.

      1. The First Amendment does not protect the deliberate dissemination of lies for the purpose of destroying a person’s reputation, even if that person is a government actor.

        The NYT would have been at no risk whatsoever if it simply reported “it is our opinion that ….”

        But, they did not.

        Why? Because they wanted to defame Trump with false assertions of fact.

        1. The same idiots who scream about “fake news” think the media should have a license to lie about their opponents. You really can’t overstate how stupid and unprincipled these people are.

          1. now do Pizzagate.

            1. Haha. And Obama was born in Kenya. These guys are too easy expose as naked hypocrites.

              1. John won’t reply to either of these two, he’ll “just happen to miss them while scrolling” or maybe he’ll roll out the old “I am super smart and everyone else is an emo retard so it’s not worth responding to” card he usually uses when he gets pinned down by a clear example.

        2. The NYT would have been at no risk whatsoever if it simply reported “it is our opinion that ….”

          But, they did not.

          Why? Because they wanted to defame Trump with false assertions of fact.

          More importantly, as ‘The Newspaper Of Record’ someone from the mailroom to the editorial staff to the board should’ve known better. It would be one thing for Gawker to print this or to print and then retract something like this, this has been as bad as the Coakley story or the Covington coverage and the fact that you don’t have to reach very far back into obscure history to find those stories is pretty telling.

        3. “The First Amendment does not protect the deliberate dissemination of lies for the purpose of destroying a person’s reputation, even if that person is a government actor. ”

          I never said otherwise. The NYT did not lie in their opinion piece, though. We all witnessed Trump ask the Russians for help in cheating an election on TV. The NYT having an opinion about Trump’s relationship with the Russians is not libel. Watch how fast this case gets dismissed (or dropped if they subpoena Trump testimony).

          1. The NYT did not lie in their opinion piece, though.

            Yes they did. We all witnessed Trump asking the Russians to release Hillary’s emails if they had them. That is not a quid pro quo or any kind of deal with the Russians.

            So, again stop fucking lying.,

            1. “You will be rewarded mightly (long, long pause here) …by our press.”

              I’d say there was extremely clear communication right there. of course, you have to be willing to see facts such as they are, even if they are not helpful for your fantasy.

              1. He was clearly making a joke about how the press wasn’t really interested in finding out about Hillary’s emails.

                Are you being obtuse or dishonest when you keep using this example as a quid pro quo?

                1. Trump is so funny. Except all he jokes about is treason and getting rid of term limits.

                  I’d say the disagreement about whether that is a joke or not shows the frivolous nature of this libel suit.

                    1. you know Trump was asked, right after he made those comments, if he as joking about asking russia to hack hillary, right? And he responded “no”.

                      Face it, you support a traitor. You support lies.

                    2. He did not ask Russia to hack. He said “if you have them, turn them over” or words to that effect. That’s not hacking, liar.

                    3. Face it, you have TDS. It’s consumed your mind, like maggots.

                    4. BigT, you need to go back and watch it again, because you are mistaken. “If you can find the missing emails…” https://www.politico.com/story/2016/07/trump-putin-no-relationship-226282

                    5. Poor DOL. She thinks she has the goods for impeachment. Did you contact Adam Schiff with your evidence sweetheart?

      2. Not if they can prove Malice or forethought. Show me where the 1A has ever been interpreted as absolute. Purposefully lying has always been verboeten

        1. The thing that might kill the Times is the lack of a retraction. They can probably show that there was some reason to think it was true when they published the editorial. And that will be enough to get them off the hook since Trump is a public figure. The problem is that it has long since been clear that it isn’t true and the Times has never published a retraction. The failure to retract something they now know to be untrue even after Trump requested they do so is malice.

          I think Trump if he stays with it, will win this case. If he gets a hack judge, it will be dismissed at the 12B6 stage for the newscycle. But that will be overturned on appeal if it happens.

          1. Remember this, everyone. Trump will never win this case. All they have to do is call for Trump testimony, and the whole thing will evaporate. Because Trump is a lying buffoon who’s own attorneys have argued that he cannot be put on the stand without perjuring himself.

            1. There is no reason for Trump to testify in this case. His testimony is of not necessary to establish that it was said and that it was false. They have the entire Mueller report to do that. Moreover, there is no way that the Times is going down the rabbit hole of trying to prove that it is actually true. They know it is not. Their defense is going to be that they didn’t know it wasn’t true when they said it and therefore acted without a reckless disregard for the truth. And Trump has nothing to do with that.

              You clearly don’t understand what is going on here. You don’t even understand your own side. You are just emoting and wasting everyone’s time. Since you refuse to understand your own positions much less anyone else’s about this, why don’t you just shut up for a while and let people who do know something talk for once.

              1. The Mueller report specifically states that Trump campaign and the Russians were broadly aware of each other’s actions and expected to benefit from them.

                “Although the investigation established that the Russian government perceived it would benefit from a Trump presidency and worked to secure that outcome, and that the campaign expected it would benefit electorally from information stolen and released through Russian efforts, the investigation did not establish that members of the Trump campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in the election interference activities,”
                -Mueller et all

                That quote from the Mueller report in no way disagrees with NYT opinion piece. I suggest you read them both.

                “Collusion — or a lack of it — turns out to have been the rhetorical trap that ensnared President Trump’s pursuers. There was no need for detailed electoral collusion between the Trump campaign and Vladimir Putin’s oligarchy because they had an overarching deal: the quid of help in the campaign against Hillary Clinton for the quo of a new pro-Russian foreign policy, starting with relief from the Obama administration’s burdensome economic sanctions. The Trumpites knew about the quid and held out the prospect of the quo.”

                https://www.nytimes.com/2019/03/27/opinion/mueller-trump-russia-quid-pro-quo.html

                1. The Mueller report specifically states that Trump campaign and the Russians were broadly aware of each other’s actions and expected to benefit from them.

                  Which means there was not a deal and there was not a prid pro quo. Being aware that someone might do something and hoping you benefit from it is not the same as going to that person and making a deal for them to do it.

                  You just quoted the language in the Mueller report that show that the Times was lying here. It is saying that there was never a deal or any prid pro quo. Can you just not read? Are you that fucking stupid?

                  1. “There was no need for detailed electoral collusion between the Trump campaign and Vladimir Putin’s oligarchy because they had an overarching deal”

                    Are you fucking stupid?

                    1. Why, because he’s not buying the NYT’s biased take on it?

                    2. Particularly this bit:

                      Collusion — or a lack of it — turns out to have been the rhetorical trap that ensnared President Trump’s pursuers.

                      What, do they mean the fucking media, including the NYT, who was parroting that line for three years before Mueller blue-balled them?

              2. Oh, and why don’t you shut up for once, John? You are far more prolific on these boards than I.

              3. And the Mueller report does not excuse Trump from testimony in this civil case.

                1. No one said it did you fucking moron. It just means that there are a million ways to show this wasn’t true without calling Trump.

                  1. And why would the defendant not call Trump?

                    1. Poor Tony is sad and bitter.

                      It’s not our fault that nobody cares about you in real life.

      3. It’s “freedom of the press,” not “freedom from responsibility.”

    2. Just the beginning of the Tausendjähriges Klage.

  11. Start a rumor that tobacco smoke kills the virus in the lungs. Then buy tobacco stocks.

  12. I need a president tough enough to take coronavirus head on.

    1. Hold my beer?

  13. Gender-neutral U.S. passports could be coming soon.

    All part of the plan to lull the world into thinking America is now a colossal pussy.

    1. We must close the Pussy Gap.

      1. We’re doing well—only Western Europe is ahead of us on pussification.

        1. What about Canadia?

          1. They’re just an annex of Western Europe.

  14. The poster child of the fall is probably the billion dollar bust of WeWork

    You mean a commercial real estate company that provides shared workspaces for technology startups isnt a $47 billion company? Fucking stupid idea to begin with.

  15. The American Civil Liberties Union is suing over “sanctuary cities for the unborn.”

    They’ve usurped the pure and noble cause that is sanctuary.

    1. THERE IS NO SANCTUARY!

  16. The FBI has arrested a Cincinnati city council member for allegedly taking bribes.

    Trying to fund a way out of Cincinnati.

  17. …Nygard “welcomes the federal investigation and expects his name to be cleared. He has not been charged, is not in custody and is cooperating with the investigation.”

    Get a new attorney.

    1. Get a new attorney? I didn’t know Nygard’s a Republican.

  18. The Judge’s comments on PragerU case also suggest that YouTube holding itself put as a platform for open debate and free expression is just marketing with the level of truthfulness that implies and that if PragerU’s case is accurate, then YouTube has treated PragerU in bad faith. Basically, Google has a right to be evil.

    1. The problem with that law suit was that it was brought under the 1st Amendment. Youtube has a right to be assholes and even crooks under the 1st Amendment. They didn’t violate Prager U’s 1st Amendment rights. I don’t see how any court could rule that they did.

      What Youtube has done is defraud Prager by promising them a terms of service that said they would not be discriminated against because of their political views or in an arbitrary manner and then doing exactly that. Youtube also is likely an illegal monopoly and engaging in illegal collusion with the other tech companies.

      This is not a 1st Amendment issue. It is a contract and a unlawful monopoly issue.

      1. The court also dismissed the false advertising issue as well under the Lanham Act which was mentioned in Binion’s article yesterday but not in here in the Roundup post. I think that should be actionable part but the court ruled that how YouTube presents itself is hyperbole that cannot be taken seriously

        1. The easy answer to this bullshit is to change the law to make violation of a terms of service by an internet platform actionable in federal court with statutory damages for each violation and attorney’s fees for any successful plaintiff. The law should also mandate that all terms of service are to be construed in favor of the user in every reasonable circumstance.

          The reason why this is happening is that there is no downside to these companies violating their terms of service. The write the TOS to be incredibly vague and unenforceable as possible and do so knowing that the damages for violating them would not be worth the cost of suing in 99% of the cases. Start giving statutory damages and attorney’s fees and that changes. The threat of litigation would force these companies to be honest about their terms of service and live by them.

          That would solve 99% of the problem. These companies would immediately be loath to kick anyone off their platform unless they had an airtight case for doing so. All of the reindeer games their fanatic Prog employees play with shadow banning and “accidentally” kicking platforms they don’t like off and applying appalling double standards to anyone not in the Prog hive would end that day.

          1. I thought you were all for Trump reducing regulation on business. That is, unless the regulation would protect unpopular and unprofitable right wingnuts on social media?

            1. I am. But unlike you I am not a fucking moron. So I understand that the fact that there is too many laws doesn’t mean every law is bad or that some laws can’t be improved rather than eliminated.

              If you knew how to think rather than emote, you would understand that. You would also understand how stupid and silly your point is and be embarrassed to make it rather than thinking it is clever. But sadly, that is beyond your capabilities.

              1. Uh huh. I think you just got caught being a big ol’ hypocrite. Getting rid of MPG regulations was good, even though it reduces our reliance on foreign oil and improves air quality. Forcing social media platforms to host content that hurts their profitability through new regulation is good because it helps your tribe. Got it. Regulations = good when it helps wing nuts. Regulation = bad when it helps anyone else, even if that everyone else is just everyone.

                1. Yes, getting rid of MPG regulations is good. Making sure tech companies are held to their terms of service is also good. They are two different things. There is nothing contradictory about supporting both.

                  Sometimes laws are necessary, sometimes they are not. The devil is in the details. Only someone as dishonest and stupid as you are could fail to understand that. This is what the old canard “a foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds” is talking about.

                  1. If those “terms of service” you keep talking about are enforceable contracts, then I don’t see why we would need extra laws, especially federal laws to address them. I suspect that youtube is acting exactly within their ToS, anyway.

                    The real take away here is that John will excuse any government action, as long as it benefits his tribe.

                    1. The real takeaway is that you are amazingly stupid person and a monument to the failure of our education system. You never learned how think or do much of anything but yell I want. You can’t even rationalize things.

                    2. He’s the worst sort of idiot, because he actually believes he’s smarter than everyone else.

                    3. Tell me again why youtubers need special federal protections.

                      You guys are ridiculous.

                    4. DOL creates a strawman? Say it ain’t so!

                      When did you stop beating your wife DOL?

                    5. The TOS are a contract written by one party on a ‘take it or leave it basis’ , not negotiated. In such cases the court holds the party that writes the contract to extraordinary scrutiny, particularly when the contract is vague. The court is wrong in this case, and it should be overturned.

            2. Regulations are bad, so there should never be a new law ever!

      2. I cannot for the life of me understand why people aren’t fucking flooding these social media companies with breach of contract lawsuits.

        Their lawyers cannot be that stupid.

        1. Because there are no damages. How do you prove you were damaged by being kicked off Twitter? You can’t. If there is no money to be made, no attorney is going to take the case.

          See my post above about awarding attorney’s fees and statutory damages. That would end this crap very quickly.

          1. If your channel is demonetized and shutdown, isn’t that damages?

            1. It is. But the problem is that the TOS are written so vaguely that it is hard to make a case they violated them. And that is another thing the law needs to solve. Strictly construe them against the drafter.

              1. Agreed.

                Still, I say keep suing. Bring contract claims in every jurisdiction and venue possible and keep hammering at it. One crack is all it takes for the dam to break.

              2. OK now I MUST know if you are a lawyer. If so, I cannot wait til your client (some giant douchey company no doubt, or a career litigant like Trump) gets that argument thrown in their face “at all times contract terms should be interpreted against the drafter.” I bet at least half of your smug attitude comes from never getting called on doing the exact same fucking thing while drafting up contracts for your clients.

                1. The terms are strictly scrutinized ONLY when they are not negotiated.

        2. It’s almost like that’s a red herring or something…

      3. The algorithms that trigger demonetization should be scrutinized.

        I see one too many channels from all walks of life complaining about it.

        Here’s how I see it (and I’m sure I’m wrong) but if Youtube demonetizes channels how is this not a violation of the right to the pursuit of happiness? People have turned their channels into a way of earning a living. Some have quit their day jobs because success with their channels permits them to do so.

        To then throttle people’s earnings and cash flow is pretty low if you ask me and it’s ILLEGAL in business. If I were to not pay someone I’d be in hot water faster than you can say ‘open borders! You’re not the boss of me!’

        1. And one of the issues is that YouTube does not explain itself. It will just say that something violated terms of service and not tell the creator how it violated terms of service.

        2. People have turned their channels into a way of earning a living. Some have quit their day jobs because success with their channels permits them to do so.

          Why is it that people who have problems because they spent a bunch of money on a free to use system are called victims instead of morons?

          1. So when your city turns off your water and electricity tomorrow with no explanation, even if only accidentally, you’ll admit to being a moron, right?

            1. Yeah, because water and electricity are free. Maybe you should have read my comment.

              1. It is not a free to use system. You give them your information and content in return for the platform. Also, what other platforms are there? Yeah, you could set up a blog somewhere but it will never get the kind of exposure that Youtube gives you.

                Those people made rational business decisions in reliance on promises made by Youtube. The pro Youtube position seems to be that since they only take information as consideration rather than money, they are free to lie and defraud their customers all they want without ever being in the wrong. In fact, the people they defraud are the ones who are in the wrong because reasons.

                1. It is not a free to use system. You give them your information and content in return for the platform.

                  Right, free.

                  Also, what other platforms are there?

                  Twitch, Facebook, I understand Microsoft has something, I’m sure there are others. Do some research.

                  Yeah, you could set up a blog somewhere but it will never get the kind of exposure that Youtube gives you.

                  That isn’t YouTube’s problem.

                  Those people made rational business decisions in reliance on promises made by Youtube.

                  You can call them rational if you want, I certainly won’t.

                  The pro Youtube position seems to be that since they only take information as consideration rather than money, they are free to lie and defraud their customers all they want without ever being in the wrong.

                  The other pro YouTube position is that YouTube owns YouTube and thus can make whatever decisions they want about their property. If a decision that they make does cause actual damage to someone, that someone should be able to sue for reparations.

                  1. It is not a free to use system. You give them your information and content in return for the platform.

                    Right, free.

                    No it is not free. I just gave something in return. Consideration can be things other than money you idiot.

                    Twitch, Facebook, I understand Microsoft has something, I’m sure there are others. Do some research.

                    Not that put up videos that get the kind of exposure Youtube does. And all of them do the same thing anyway.

                    Those people made rational business decisions in reliance on promises made by Youtube.

                    You can call them rational if you want, I certainly won’t.

                    So your idea of “rationality” is to turn down deals that are in your benefit because you should assume every company that makes a promise is lying? You are not even making a response to my point here. You are just emoting.

                    The other pro YouTube position is that YouTube owns YouTube and thus can make whatever decisions they want about their property.</I.

                    Sure they can. But their freedom to use their property doesn't include the freedom to defraud customers. The rental car company is free to rent their cars to whomever they please. That doesn't mean they are free to promise me a car and then renig on the promise after I relied on it.

                    You really have no idea how contract law works. You seem to think property ownership gives you the right to lie and defraud people. That is not how it works or should work.

                    1. No it is not free.

                      How much money did you pay? None? So it’s free. You wanting to equivocate about the meaning of free doesn’t change that.

                      Not that put up videos that get the kind of exposure Youtube does. And all of them do the same thing anyway.

                      Are you sure about that? You’ve carefully viewed the statistics of all video streaming services and found that YouTube is on top? And being on top makes YouTube a monopoly despite the existence of other similar services?

                      So your idea of “rationality” is to turn down deals that are in your benefit because you should assume every company that makes a promise is lying?

                      My idea of rationality does not include spending my life saving using a free service to hopefully make money back.

                      You are just emoting.

                      As often as you say this, you obviously don’t understand how retarded it makes you sound. You’re moronic belief that you are “rational” and anyone who disagrees with you is “emoting” is moronic.

                      You really have no idea how contract law works.

                      I am not a lawyer and never claimed otherwise.

                      You seem to think property ownership gives you the right to lie and defraud people.

                      I challenge you to find the place where I said that and paste it here with the time stamp. In fact, what I said was:

                      If a decision that they make does cause actual damage to someone, that someone should be able to sue for reparations.

                      Meaning I think service users should be able to sue service providers if the providers lie about the service.

                    2. How much money did you pay? None? So it’s free. You wanting to equivocate about the meaning of free doesn’t change that.

                      So if I agree to let you stay in my house this weekend in return for you mowing the lawn that is free? By your logic it is. No money changed hands. No it is not free. If you don’t give them your information, they don’t give you the platform. Consideration doesn’t have to be money. How many different ways do you need that explained to you?

                      My idea of rationality does not include spending my life saving using a free service to hopefully make money back.

                      That is great but this isn’t’ a free service. Moreover, you are not answering the question of why it is irrational to rely on the promises of a business like Youtube.

                      As often as you say this, you obviously don’t understand how retarded it makes you sound. You’re moronic belief that you are “rational” and anyone who disagrees with you is “emoting” is moronic.

                      No I don’t think that at all. There are lots of rational smart people who disagree with me. You are just not one of them. The problem is you, not me. If you don’t like that, make better arguments and stop defending stupid positions like “if you don’t pay money it is free”.

                      I challenge you to find the place where I said that and paste it here with the time stamp. In fact, what I said was:

                      Every time you say “it is their property”, that is what you are saying. Youtube is making promises to people in their terms of service and then breaking that promise. That is fraud. Your only defense of them is “well they have the right to do whatever they want with their property”. So yes you are saying that.

                      Meaning I think service users should be able to sue service providers if the providers lie about the service.

                      Then we agree. So what is your problem here?

                    3. So if I agree to let you stay in my house this weekend in return for you mowing the lawn that is free?

                      If you agree to let me stay at your house in exchange for me giving you my name and phone number, yes, that’s free. If you want to change the parameters of the agreement to something that isn’t analogous to YouTube, we’ll need to discuss it.

                      No I don’t think that at all. There are lots of rational smart people who disagree with me. You are just not one of them. The problem is you, not me. If you don’t like that, make better arguments and stop defending stupid positions like “if you don’t pay money it is free”.

                      The problem is definitely you. As soon as you start getting pissy about people just not agreeing with you, it’s because “emoting”

                      Then we agree. So what is your problem here?

                      I don’t have a problem. I stated what I think the case should be and you pissed your pants because I don’t hate YouTube.

                    4. If you agree to let me stay at your house in exchange for me giving you my name and phone number, yes, that’s free.

                      If I can sell that information it has value. Not free.

                      John is kicking your stupid ass, as usual.

                2. You’re confusing “content creators” with “customers”.

                  They aren’t. They’re more like cattle then customers.

                  1. They are customers. It is an exchange of information for access. Only the simple minded like Sparky can’t understand that.

                    1. It is an exchange of information for access.

                      Sure. Doesn’t make them a customer.

                      Look at their business model. What they actually sell is advertising time and access to eyeballs. Content-creators provide the bait to bring in those eyeballs.

                      But YouTube has no loyalty, implied or otherwise, to bait.

                    2. Both the advertisers and the users are customers. I am the NFL’s customer when i watch a football game. I am consuming their product. Same thing here only unlike the NFL example, I am actually giving something of value to them. These companies sell platforms to me and the sell the information they get in return to advertisers. Both me and the advertisers are customers.

                    3. You ever heard the saying “follow the money”?

                      You should try it. It’ll illuminate why I keep saying content creators aren’t the customer. It’d also show why the NFL is more worried about pissing off ESPN then it’s worried about pissing off you.

                    4. “It’d also show why the NFL is more worried about pissing off ESPN then it’s worried about pissing off you.”

                      Not a football fan, I see.
                      The NFL made ESPN cancel a tv show because they didn’t like the storylines.
                      You’ve got the order of dependance wrong – it’s ESPN that can’t afford to piss the NFL off, and the NFL cares far more about what its fans think than ESPN

                  2. By Sparky’s idiotic standards non-currency and/or futures-based exchanges are unenforceable.

                    A contract giving the service of plowing the fields in exchange for 1/10th of the yield is unenforceable because no money changed hands and the field was rented out ‘for free’.

                    1. By Sparky’s idiotic standards non-currency and/or futures-based exchanges are unenforceable.

                      Please point out where I said that or I’ll sue you for libel.

                    2. Please point out where I said that or I’ll sue you for libel.

                      You were free to sue me for libel before I said it.

                      I didn’t say you said it, I said your standards were idiotic and they are. I know they are.

              2. Yeah, because water and electricity are free. Maybe you should have read my comment.

                I did read your comment. It was stupid. I gave you a slightly better angle, you rejected it.

                What you’re saying is without prices, contracts can freely be voided. Since the contract doesn’t matter why does the degree of cost or term of interruption? Water costs pennies and you could just get it from your neighbors or any one of hundreds of other sources. Why would a moron like you rely on a protected public service for cheap water?

                1. I did read your comment

                  No you didn’t, it’s clear you didn’t.

                  I gave you a slightly better angle, you rejected it.

                  Nice try. “I read your comment and didn’t like it so I built this strawman that I like better”.

                  What you’re saying is without prices, contracts can freely be voided.

                  Please copy/paste where I said that.

                  Since the contract doesn’t matter why does the degree of cost or term of interruption?

                  What are you even talking about?

                  Water costs pennies and you could just get it from your neighbors or any one of hundreds of other sources.

                  I’m not sure what that has to do with anything. I’m paying the city for water service. Since I’m paying the city, I expect them to deliver what I’m paying for. What does the fact that I could get the service from somewhere else have to do with it?

                  Why would a moron like you rely on a protected public service for cheap water?

                  What argument do you think you’re making here? Seriously. Are you really arguing that since I could pay some other water service to get water that I’m dumb for getting it from the city? And even then, what does that have to do with receiving a service that I don’t pay for?

                  1. Since I’m paying the city, I expect them to deliver what I’m paying for.

                    Just the expectation or do you have a contract or terms of service?

                    1. Because I have it on good authority that your expectations of a service provider mean absolutely shit. In some selective cases even if you have a signed contract or terms of service between you and them.

                    2. Just the expectation or do you have a contract or terms of service?

                      For my water service, I’m dealing with the government so there may be a TOS or contract somewhere that I’ve default agreed to by living in the city.

                      For my electricity and gas service, there is a contract because I get those services from private companies. If they change the terms to something I don’t like, I can try to find a different service.

                    3. If they change the terms to something I don’t like, I can try to find a different service.

                      And if they change up their service without changing the TOS, leaving you hung out to dry. You’re a moron for leaving yourself without recourse, right? Contracts, terms of service, expectations around those are just shit plebes and morons have to deal with, right?

                    4. And if they change up their service without changing the TOS, leaving you hung out to dry. You’re a moron for leaving yourself without recourse, right? Contracts, terms of service, expectations around those are just shit plebes and morons have to deal with, right?

                      Holy shit, dude. This is where you should admit that you completely missed the point. Completely and utterly. You started off with something dumb and now you’re trying to out retard yourself. Please give up.

                    5. Now mad casual is kicking your ass. Aren’t you getting a sore ass?

            2. Those are services you pay for. “Content Creators” are not the people paying for a service on YouTube.

              Those services are regulated as utilities. YouTube (and other tech companies that y’all have loved to target for the last few years) are not. They are private companies.

              1. Sure they are private companies. That doesn’t mean that they should be allowed to lie to their customers and break their terms of service promises or create a cartel to control the market.

                1. Again, content-creators are not the customers.

                  As far as breaking the “terms of service” goes, sue ’em for it. I suspect there’s a reason that, despite y’all saying this for years, terms of service lawsuits aren’t a common thing.

                  Same thing with the “cartel” claims. Gab’s “deplatforming” has been going on for years, as each new “partner” discovers just how awful they are and looks for an exit strategy. That’s not a cartel, that’s just lots of people thinking it’s fucking awful.

                  1. As far as breaking the “terms of service” goes, sue ’em for it. I suspect there’s a reason that, despite y’all saying this for years, terms of service lawsuits aren’t a common thing.

                    The reason is simple; the damages available in any individual case don’t justify the cost of litigation. That is why the solution to this is to make attorney’s fees and statutory damages available in cases of violation of the TOS. That is what we do in copyright infringement cases. The reason for that is that if you didn’t, there would be no way to enforce copyrights since the damages available for any individual violation are not large enough to justify bringing suit. Same problem here and same solution.

                    The other problem is that these companies are very cagey about how they write their TOSs and write them in ways that make them seem binding but actually are not. Courts should strictly construe these TOS’s against the drafters. There is an old tenant of contract law that says contracts should be construed against the party who drafted it and more strictly against that party the more bargaining power that party has. That needs to be applied here. Make these companies adopt clear terms of service and live by them. If Youtube wants to run a platform that is only available to people with politics it likes, that is their right. They should have to be upfront about that however.

                    I really don’t think this is a hard problem to solve. And I don’t think that solving it requires violating anyone’s property rights. You just write the law to ensure that everyone is upfront about their terms of service and lives by their promises.

                    1. Now this? This is a sensible response.

                      It also 100% undermines your up-stream claims.

                      Yes, this is a problem we can “solve”. But contrary to your up-stream assertions, it’s something that needs to be “solved” and current tools aren’t effective.

                      But here’s the bit you’re continuing to ignore: since content-creators are not the customers, even if you got your wish on more easily understandable terms of services, the services are going to preserve their right to de-platform, de-monitize, shadow-ban, or whatever because those capabilities are important to their actual users.

                      Even if you “win”, all you’ll accomplish is more easy-to-understand Terms of Services. Which is good on it’s own, but somehow I’m skeptical you’d consider that a win.

                    2. It doesn’t undermine my claims at all. This is exactly what I am claiming. I also think they are an unlawful monopoly. But that is a separate issue from the contract issue. You can disagree with their being a monopoly and still agree with this or agree with both. They are not contradictory claims. It may be that this solution solves the harm associated with their monopoly. I am not sure to be honest. I do think that we should do this first and if it doesn’t work then go after their asses under the anti trust laws.

                    3. Even if you “win”, all you’ll accomplish is more easy-to-understand Terms of Services. Which is good on it’s own, but somehow I’m skeptical you’d consider that a win.

                      These companies are not upfront about their biases because doing so is bad for business. If they had to tell customers “we reserve the right to throw you off the platform if your committee of woke recent college graduates finds your politics offensive”, they wouldn’t have many customers. They have a business because they sell themselves as an open platform for all. So their having to be honest would mean choosing between their politics or their business model. I have no doubt they would lose the politics very quickly or if they didn’t would lose business such that they would no longer be significant.

                    4. It doesn’t undermine my claims at all.

                      If enforcing the existing terms of service was sufficient (as you say upstream) then we wouldn’t need government to change how it interprets terms of service and pass new loss restricting what and how terms of service looks like.

                      So yes. It does.

                      If they had to tell customers “we reserve the right to throw you off the platform if your committee of woke recent college graduates finds your politics offensive”, they wouldn’t have many customers

                      You’re over a decade late for this claim to be anything but laughable. That these services will kick off people they don’t like isn’t a secret, and hasn’t been for years.

                    5. Esther,

                      Just because this problem can be solved via contract law doesn’t preclude them also being a monopoly. Both things can be true. So, I don’t see how you can say I am undercutting myself here.

                      And no, most people don’t know how bad these services are. Most people don’t care or pay any attention to this stuff. What is laughable is that you think anyone but a small minority pays any attention to it or cares about it until they are affected.

                      If the law forced Youtube to tell customers “we are a Progressive company and only progressive views are allowed”, they would be a much less attractive option. Indeed, the proof of that is in their refusal to say that. If it didn’t matter, these companies would just dispense with the pretense of being unbiased and say so. They don’t do that because they think doing so would hurt their business. I trust their judgement of what would hurt their business over yours.

                    6. Both things can be true.

                      And also not what I’m saying are undermining each other.

                      So, I don’t see how you can say I am undercutting myself here.

                      You have claimed both
                      (A) Enforcing the existing ToS is sufficient
                      (B) We need new laws to interpret and regulate ToS differently.

                      If the law forced Youtube to tell customers “we are a Progressive company and only progressive views are allowed”,

                      The law forces cigarette packs to have warnings about cancer and death. But sure, go off.

                      If it didn’t matter, these companies would just dispense with the pretense of being unbiased and say so.

                      Yeah, I can’t imagine that anyone who doesn’t want to be associated with “it’s just so unfair that I’m socially shunned for saying the n-word” Prager U or “we love our far-right base that cheers on mass murdering incels” Gab would think that they’re “unbiased”.

                      Maybe people don’t think of themselves as the moustache-twirling villains you think they are?

                    7. And also not what I’m saying are undermining each other.

                      No they don’t. They are monopolists who are also defrauding their customers. Neither position has anything to do with the other. Both could be true or either could be true or neither.

                      You don’t understand my position at all. What I am saying is we need laws that force courts to interpret TOS and give attorneys’ fees and statutory damages that will make those TOS meaningful. I don’t know how else to explain it. You not getting what I am saying and maybe I am not smart enough to put it terms where you will.

                      eah, I can’t imagine that anyone who doesn’t want to be associated with “it’s just so unfair that I’m socially shunned for saying the n-word” Prager U or “we love our far-right base that cheers on mass murdering incels”

                      We can imagine a lot of things. What we know is that none of these companies are being honest and all of them are pretending to be unbiased. I think they do that because doing so is good for their business. If you think there is another reason, I would like to hear it. Moreover, if you think being woke and open about it is good for business, then why aren’t these companies doing that? Are you just smarter than they are? Are they lying about this even though they would be better off not and only you know that?

                      Maybe but I doubt it.

                    8. I don’t know how else to explain it.

                      Because you can’t, because your claim is nonsensical.

                      If the ToS are sufficient, you don’t need a law.
                      If you need a law, then the ToS will necessarily change and the current ToS aren’t sufficient.

                      Fact is, you don’t pass laws for self-evident facts. You pass laws to change things. So if you need to pass a law to make ToS mean what you want them to mean, then ToS don’t currently mean what you want them to mean.

                      It’s why you don’t see laws about the sky being blue, and people laugh at the idea of state legislating Pi as equal to 3.

                      What we know is that none of these companies are being honest […]

                      They’re companies, this was obvious from the start.

                      If you think there is another reason, I would like to hear it.

                      “Maybe people don’t think of themselves as the moustache-twirling villains you think they are?” really wasn’t subtle.

                    9. John pwned you, EE. He is correct about the contract terms.

                      I quibble about the unfair monopoly, however, John. A ‘natural’ monopoly is not illegal unless there is collusion with other providers. A government enforced monopoly is illegal, of course…or should be, e.g. roads can be private, but are very difficult to build.

              2. Those services are regulated as utilities. YouTube (and other tech companies that y’all have loved to target for the last few years) are not. They are private companies.

                And when did the US government take control of water and electricity?

                Moreover and to the point, Sparky almost certainly has a contract with the local municipality to provide power and electricity is the assertion that contracts with utilities can be honored and enforced while more nominally private contracts cannot (even when Alphabet provides both private services and ‘public’ utility services)? How obviously “libertarian” of you.

                1. First off, I’m not a libertarian/Libertarian, never have been, never claimed to be, and most likely never will be.

                  Second off, the problem y’all have is that the “nominally private contracts” that content creators have with YouTube really do allow YouTube to do what it wants. It’s a completely one-sided relationship, and the content-creator has basically no rights.

                  1. Second off, the problem y’all have is that the “nominally private contracts” that content creators have with YouTube really do allow YouTube to do what it wants. It’s a completely one-sided relationship, and the content-creator has basically no rights.

                    Disagree. I don’t have a problem with one sided contracts. I have a problem with such one sided contracts being regarded in good faith and, moreover, being provided selective legal protection based on said good faith.

                    1. What part of YouTube’s ToS is unclear about their willingness to take down stuff they think is offensive?

                      Or is the “bad faith” part where they are the sole judges of what is or isn’t too offensive to be hosted on their site?

                2. that contracts with utilities can be honored and enforced while more nominally private contracts cannot (even when Alphabet provides both private services and ‘public’ utility services)?

                  You are the one making this argument. Once again, here’s what I said that somehow led you to your moronic statement.

                  1. People who dump money into a free service are not smart.

                  2. I think service users should be able to sue service providers if the providers lie about the service.

        3. Almost every guitar channel has a comment about demonetization in almost every episode. Apparently, if their guitars were to play more than a bar or 2 of a copyrighted song, the video is demonetized. This makes it extremely difficult to do things like TEACH THE FUCKING GUITAR.

          Their demonetization policy seems capricious.

          1. In fairness to Youtube, that is because our copyright law has become an instrument of oppression. If I write a song and record it, I totally get how other people shouldn’t be able to sell my recordings without paying me. But how the hell that common sense idea has evolved into “I can sue and demand Youtube take down a video of someone teaching guitar playing my song” is beyond me.

            1. That strikes me more as a case of suppression than oppression.

          2. Yup. I watch a few of them and they’re taking it in the chin too.

            Cat channels too!

            1. Without cats and porn, there is no internet.

              1. My teenager assures me that is so 2000’s. It is now memes and porn.

          3. that case is the government’s fault not YouTube’s.

        4. The way it works is some big company, for example, Disney, will auto-flag any video that uses a clip or music from its movies. And Youtube will automatically suspend that video without looking into it, forcing the owner of the video to then prove they were in the right and are using that clip properly under the fair use act (parody, educational, commentary, etc, at least in the USA). This hurts the actual video producers because the majority of the revenue they make off of videos happens right after they release it. If that video gets taken down, they don’t make as much revenue as they would, because plenty of people then miss the video. Large corporations abuse the system, and get away with it, and Youtube abuses the content creators. Trust me, as soon as another video streaming site becomes available that people can make money off of reliably, youtube will be done.

          1. I think you are correct. The problem is that there are so many barriers to entry. To compete with youtube you have to have viewers. To get viewers you have to have content. But without viewers you have no content. Youtube exists because it was first.

            It is like Gab and Twitter. Yeah, gab is an alternative to Twitter. But it is having a very difficult time attractive the critical mass of users necessary to be a real competitor. I don’t know how another video platform does that to Youtube.

            The other problem is that if there were a platform that didn’t abuse content providers and do the bidding of big copyright owners like Disney, my guess is Disney and others would tied them up in spurious litigation so quickly and so completely that they could never get off the ground.

            The whole thing is an oligarchy nothing even resembling a free market.

      4. How does the concept of monopoly apply to an entity that gives stuff away? And where “customers” have unlimited other choices (for what is elective entertainment)?

        1. They don’t give anything away. They give you access to their platform in return for you giving them your information which they then sell to advertisers.

          And no, you don’t have infinite choices. All of the available platforms that offer a large audience are controlled by a handful of companies all of whom are colluding with each other to deny access to anyone they deem undesirable.

          You can’t run a business anymore without a presence on social media. And “social media” in this context means Facebook, Youtube, Instagram, and Twitter. And those are owned by what? Three companies?

      5. What Youtube has done is defraud Prager by promising them a terms of service…It is a contract…issue.

        A mere promise is not a contract and is not enforceable. YouTube is a free service. Users do not pay YouTube anything in exchange for performance by YouTube, so the elements of a contract are not present. YouTube is free to allow or disallow anyone from using their free service. They are legally free to lie about not discriminating.

        1. No it is not a free service. It is an exchange. Youtube doesn’t run a charity. They offer their platform and then sell advertising based on the information and content you provide. It is a contract with consideration on both sides. I give the information and the content, they give me the platform.

          They are not free to lie about anything. If I make a promise to someone and they determentally rely on that promise, I am liable for damages.

          You don’t understand what is going on here Vernon.

          1. You ever get this deep into contract law regarding all those american construction workers that Trump fucked over? Now those are actual, honest to goodness contract violations.

            1. That is nice Jeff but that is not what we are talking about here.

              1. So “no”

                1. Poor Little Jeffy likes to change the topic by asking stupid questions.

                2. Jeff’s getting mentally disemboweled and is embarrassed.

          2. You don’t understand what’s going on here, John.

            YouTube provides a free service—allowing users to share their videos on YouTube’s site. There is no exchange—the service is a gift from YouTube. In its Terms of Service, YouTube informs users that the information they share will be used to direct advertising to them and their viewers. This is simply a condition of use for their site, not a payment to YouTube on the part of the users. There is no requirement that users supply any content—you are free to set up a YouTube account and never upload anything. There is no “quid pro quo”, as the kids say these days.

            If I make a promise to someone and they determentally rely on that promise, I am liable for damages.

            No, you are not, unless they provided consideration to you in explicit exchange for that promise. As I said above, a mere promise is not a contract and is not enforceable as such.

            This is Business Law 301 stuff. Get up to speed.

            1. So verbal contracts don’t exist in your world? WTF

              1. Sure they do, but they still have to contain the elements of a contract to be enforceable. And good luck enforcing them. I don’t anything in what I wrote that suggests verbal contracts don’t exist.

        2. A mere promise is not a contract and is not enforceable.

          It’s not ‘Our promise’, it’s a literal “Terms Of Service” if it’s not, it shouldn’t be presented and selectively enforced as such.

          This shit is as crazy and fucked up as the transgender nonsense.

          1. “Terms of service” is not a contract unless the user is paying for the service and the terms are embodied in the agreement.

      6. +10000 John.

      7. This has been my argument all along. It’s not a 1st amendment issue– what youtube does with its TOS, it’s a breach of contract issue.

        1. Which is my point about the utilities above. If my local water provider breaks the contract, doesn’t matter they’re privately or publicly held, or if I’m buying $1500 of water per mo. or $0.01 of water per mo. If I’m advertising ‘Free Ice Water’ at Wall Drug and show up to find that water doesn’t come out of the tap when I turn it on, the terms of service were broken, the only question is how much to be rendered at judgement.

          1. If Wall Drug advertises Free Ice Water, that in no way creates a contract to provide it to you. They might be in some trouble for false advertising, but they would not be in breach of any contract.

  19. A woman in Utah was prosecuted for being topless in her own home.

    The host family I lived with in Sweden would find this utterly hilarious. My host mother sunbathed topless in the back yard anytime it was over 70 degrees and sunny.

    1. Nobody should know what the human body looks like, except experts.

    2. In front of her step kids when her husband apparently has a toxic divorce from the kids’ mother. It is just a stupid situation but predictable given the culture in 2020.

      1. Still no indication of how the scheming bitch of an ex-wife could testify to events where she was not present.

        1. This, and I’m not a bitter divorced dude.

        2. It wasn’t the ex-wife who started this, it was the kids who were thoroughly creeped out.

          That is why the prosecutor forged ahead with charges despite massive the massive media distortions: This was a case of a stepmom being sexually creepy to her husband’s kids, not some vindictive ex trying to make trouble.

          1. I keep meaning to look up what the kids testified to seeing in court or to third parties. The absence of what story they told being in all the reporting sets off my bullshit radar.

      2. I’ve seen this documentary on pornhub.

        1. lol, you finally came up with something decent. Well, I guess technically it’s indecent, but we’re all degenerates here.

          1. Aw fuck, I didn’t even prepare an awards speech.

            I’d like to thank god, my supporting cast, and all the trolls and clickbait writers who successfully steal hours of productivity from my life…

            1. He said decent. Not really speech worthy. But when you’re a bitch, being called decent is probably like Christmas.

              So Merry Christmas.

  20. The secret FISA court should be forbidden from allowing spying on political campaigns ever again — period!

    Since it was illegal at the time, I take this to mean “we tried it to get Trump, we have to be sure nobody does it to us!”

    1. How many of trump’s campaign staff are in prison now? 4? I’ve lost count. Fill your campaign with the corrupt, the criminal, and the traitorous then don’t be surprised when a few of them are under surveillance. Also helps if multiple members of your campaign lie hundreds of times about contacts with russian agents.

      1. “How many of trump’s campaign staff are in prison now? 4? I’ve lost count.”

        You ‘lost count’ since you had your mittens on and couldn’t get to your fingers, you pathetic piece of shit.
        And who ever is in jail it there for reasons un-related to your fantasy world.
        Fuck off and die.

      2. Fuck off, Jeff.

      3. “4? I’ve lost count.”

        Losing count at 4 is not a good sign.

      4. “Fill your campaign with the corrupt, the criminal, and the traitorous then don’t be surprised when a few of them are under surveillance”
        Funny how this only seems to apply to the Trump campaign, and not Obama, who was illegally encouraging spying, or all the little crooks in the Clinton campaign who were falsifying documents and creating fraudulent reports.

        1. Go ahead and drop some sources for Obama “encouraging spying” on Trump campaign, or of Clinton campaign falsifying documents, while you are at it.

          1. The head of the FBI and his DNI engaged in a conspiracy to spy on the Trump campaign that included committing perjury before the FISA court. Even if Obama didn’t know and participate in that, he is guilty of gross and incompetence and negligence for it happening in his administration.

            Moreover, this is not the first time Obama was caught abusing people’s rights. His IRS also targeted the Tea Party and ended up issuing an apology and admission and paying millions of dollars in civil damages.

            So stop fucking lying. You know what Obama did and you are fine with it. The FBI spying on people and DOJ showing up at people’s door for the crime of starting a political organization is the country you want to live in so long as they are going after the right people. It is who you are. Own it and stop fucking lying pissing on everyone’s leg and telling us it is raining.

            1. I think FISA courts are a disgrace. I think the patriot act and all its trimming are thoroughly unamerican. But I’m not going to shed a tear when politicos get caught in their own trap.

              1. You don’t think that at all. If you did, you would want to hold the people who abused them accountable. You don’t and never will provided they are Democrats. So stop lying.

                1. Ok, John. Why don’t you just have a conversation with yourself about what I believe.

                2. And I’ve never voted Dem.

                  1. Nobody believes you. Mostly because you’re a liar.

          2. ChemJeff you dishonest shit.
            You’re always asking for sources like that somehow disproves a statement. Hoping against hope that they’ll fail to provide them and you’ll get your “win”. Then, if they give you a source you ignore it. Such a dishonest little weasel.

            Anyway here: https://www.justice.gov/storage/120919-examination.pdf

            1. Nowhere in that report does it say Obama spied on the Trump campaign or that Hillary forged documents.

              It says agents failed to follow protocol and generally did the shit heel things they do when they get these warrants. Trump was treated no differently than other targets who appear to be engaging in light treason.

            2. And I’m not Jeff. I know your smooth lizard brain relies on pattern recognition above all else, but two people not liking Trump does hardly a conspiracy make.

              1. Shut up Jeff.

                1. Go fuck yourself, old man. If you have any viagra laying around, that is.

                  1. Poor Little Jeffy.

    2. It is the equivalent of passing a law that bans crime. Doing what these people did was already a crime. There is no need to pass another law. They just need to enforce the laws they have.

      Every government power can be abused. No amount of laws or “blue ribbon oversight committees” of top men is going to prevent government employees from abusing their power if they are determined to do so. The only way to prevent that is to either take away their power entirely, which in this case would mean ending the government’s ability to collect foreign intelligence, or hammer the people you do catch abusing the power so hard that it deters others from doing it. The first option isn’t going to happen. Regardless of how bad the IC is, the public is never going to agree to get rid of it. So, that leaves option two. Everyone involved with this needs to be sent, to quote Office Space, “a real pound you in the ass prison” for a very long time. Unless that happens, this sort of thing will happen more often in the future. “But his career is ruined and he feels bad” is not going to deter anyone.

      1. //“But his career is ruined and he feels bad” is not going to deter anyone.//

        Especially when the #resistance trampoline is always there to help cushion the fall.

        Nobody’s career is ruined when bureaucratic seditionists are welcomed with open arms by every shameless liberal media organization in the country.

        1. At worst their career in government is ruined. But they all move on to big paying jobs in the private sector as a thank you for their services.

          1. A free-pass to a promotion and minor celebrity status. Or, as liberals call it, “deterrence.”

  21. It’s time to panic about the coronavirus if it will take down the Orange Man Bad and help us bring about the Socialist Workers’ Utopia!

    1. Union of Socialist States of America coming next winter

      1. Resist!

  22. “Covid-19, known as the coronvirus, will wreak widespread changes on American society and usher in “the end of affluence politics,” suggests Matt Stoller in Wired….”

    Hey, Matt? Meet this other idiot Krugman; I’m sure the two of you can make asses of yourselves in private.

    1. Is he this stupid or just writing revenge porn for Democrats or both? The country survived the Spanish inflenza outbreak of 1918. That killed 675,000 Americans. That is more Americans than both the World Wars combined killed. It killed more Americans than the civil war. And that is in a population of around 100 million at the time or 1/3rd of today’s population.

      This thing isn’t going to kill 180,000 Americans much less the two million it would have to kill to be equal to the 1918 epidemic. And even if it did, it wouldn’t end the age of affluence or punish us for our sinful, consumptive, capitalist ways.

      At worst it will kill a lot of sick and old people. That will be a tragedy. But, the hard fact is that healthy people either won’t care or will get over it and move on with life. It is how human beings are. If they were not that way, our species would have died out a long time ago.

      1. I’m sure you’ll appreciate this:
        “What it’s like to be a coronavirus patient in San Francisco”
        […]
        “Rick Wright said he feels perfectly fine.
        That’s despite the fact he tested positive for the coronavirus after being evacuated from the Diamond Princess cruise ship in Japan and has been in a hospital room for the past week with his vitals checked by medical professionals in hazmat suits. His wife is quarantined at Travis Air Force Base…”
        https://www.sfchronicle.com/business/article/What-it-s-like-to-be-a-coronavirus-patient-in-15086579.php?cmpid=gsa-sfgate-result

        False imprisonment? Quarantined for a head cold?
        omigerdweallgonnadie!
        (thanks, G3)

        1. A lot of people get this virus and don’t get any symptoms or very light symptoms. That is why it is spreading so fast and so hard to contain. Does this dumb ass not understand that just because it isn’t affecting him doesn’t mean it can’t kill someone else?

          1. It has a 14 day incubation period. I think the dumb ass doesn’t understand what that means.

            1. There is no info that it has a 14-day incubation. 14 day quarantine is an arbitrary number based on MERS.

              The actual info from Wuhan about the Covid-19 virus indicates that it might be 24 days. But they ain’t interested in sharing the details of their study with us so we can peer-evaluate. I suspect because we’ve already sent them a few FYTW’s so they are responding in kind.

              1. “Responding in kind”?

                JFC dude, what the fuck is wrong with you?

          2. Oh hell John. Maybe he just doesn’t have the money to pay for his own quarantine. Which he’ll soon be getting the bill for.

      2. It could improve the financials for SS and Medicare.

      3. The problem with the Spanish flu was that it weaponized the immune system against itself, meaning it targeted the young and healthy rather than the old and sick. Which is why not much was known about it at the time – WWI was going on when the epidemic got started and the largest concentrations of the young and healthy were military encampments and nobody’s dumb enough to publicize the fact that their troops were decimated by the flu. Given that there’s anecdotal evidence that HIV drugs are effective at fighting this coronavirus, I’d be concerned over whether or not it’s attacking the immune system in a similar way. Has anybody seen the data on the people who have died from the coronavirus? Is it in fact the old and sick most at risk as it would be from the regular flu?

        1. I have not heard anything about it affecting the young and healthy more than the old and sick.

        2. Given that there’s anecdotal evidence that HIV drugs are effective at fighting this coronavirus, I’d be concerned over whether or not it’s attacking the immune system in a similar way.

          This is a non-sequitur. HIV drugs are anti-retrovirals that prevent viruses from reproducing. The Spanish Flu was so deadly because it would trigger cytokine storms that would kill the patient. Immunosuppressant drugs would prevent or alleviate cytokine storms but HIV drugs are specifically not immunosuppressant.

          1. HIV itself could effectively combat cytokine storm but would be a bit like ending a heat wave by blotting out the sun.

        3. I’m watching Italy and Japan since they are the first countries with both a comprehensive health care system and a high (by global standards) standard of living for a majority of citizens. I don’t trust numbers coming out of places with rampant poverty, substandard health care, and/or huge disparities in the standard of living populations.

          From what I’ve seen, critical cases and deaths are mostly those who are elderly or have health conditions/behaviors compromising their respiratory systems.

    2. They’re gonna try to pin on this Trump are they?

      Sigh.

      Headline: Trump’s stupid anti-free trade protectionism lead to Coronavirus outbreak…and Climate change. And not allowing transgenders to tick off the ‘other’ box.

      1. Try not to confuse “pinning it on Trump” and critiquing Trump for lying, appointing people who don’t believe in science to lead the response, etc..

  23. Where is my Climate Change caused the Coronavirus article?

    1. Patience; they’re still working on the Trump caused the Coronavirus articles. They’ll get around to Climate Change soon enough, followed by “our lax gun safety laws”.

      1. That’s going to be done interesting truth twisting considering this looks to be a cold weather virus. If the world’s warming extremely that would reduce the viruses deadliness not increases it.

        1. Correct me if necessary, but I thought that the key driver for some increased infections in colder weather (e.g. flu season) has more to do with closer contact among people spending more time together indoors than any environmental preferences of the virus.

          1. I’ve heard that from laymen, but not from an authoritative source. It also doesn’t make much sense to me considering that humans congregate all year long in dense clusters of schools and jobs. Temperature doesn’t change if you’re in your cube every day.

          2. When the temperature dips below freezing the humidity level drops, the air gets drier. Dry air is more conducive to viruses, they last longer. Most strains degraded outside the body in humid conditions, quickly.

          3. What I understand is that those virus change hosts via the respiratory system. Via sneezes and coughs. Which either go directly to another host – or more commonly go to hands to door handles and faucets to hands to eyes/nose/mouth. Which does greatly affect whether masks or hand-washing is the most effective action to prevent its spread.

            Cold weather simply increases the number of people who are sneezing and coughing. So an infected person may be asymptomatic or convalescent or immune – but then they catch cold and start sneezing/coughing. Maybe a bit due to more gathering indoors but my guess is the former.

      2. Why are all you Trumpies convinced that coronavirus and the response to it are all part of some anti Trump conspiracy? You guys are fucking bonkers. The level of paranoia in your cult is reaching critical mass.

        1. Why are you such a prolificshitposter?

          1. He likes to lie, and this is a good place to do that.

        2. Why are all you Trumpies convinced that coronavirus and the response to it are all part of some anti Trump conspiracy?

          Says the guy queefing out about the supposed downfall of a corrupt republic.

          1. The difference is, I can see with my own eyes that Trump is attacking our republic’s foundations. When Trump asks the Russians and the chinese for help in the next election, I can see that and respond honestly, because I’m not a partisan.

            There is no evidence that coronavirus is a conspiracy against Trump.

            1. The difference is, I can see with my own eyes that Trump is attacking our republic’s foundations.

              What a hilariously vague statement.

              The stupidest part about your initial retort is that it was done in response to an obvious joke.

        3. I haven’t seen anybody say that the coronavirus itself is a anti-Trump conspiracy. A lot of people are suggesting that the Democrats will exploit the concerns about it to try and rescue their sagging political fortunes. There’s nothing paranoid about that. Political parties routinely use crises in an opportunistic fashion to undermine their opponents.

          1. Any crisis brings dozens of unforced Trump errors. Will Democrats make hay of those, yes. Is there a conspiracy among politicians and media to frame Trump for this, no.

    2. “I have no evidence that climate change triggered this particular virus”, but…. From three weeks ago. A simple google search shows more that aren’t so hesitant to assert the link.

  24. “Bay Area group sues Coke, Pepsi, other giants over plastic pollution ‘poisoning everything’”
    […]
    “…The lawsuit, filed in San Mateo Superior Court by the Berkeley-based Earth Island Institute, accuses 10 of the giants in soft drink, food, candy, personal care and cleaning products sales of essentially overwhelming the world’s ecosystem with plastic while falsely claiming the bottles, containers and packaging material they produce will be recycled when most of it won’t be…”
    https://www.sfchronicle.com/environment/article/Earth-Island-Institute-sues-10-big-companies-to-15086247.php?cmpid=gsa-sfgate-result

    Berkeley, the home of UC and assorted nuts.

    1. Yeah the problem is coke bottles not bums shitting everyone on the streets.

      1. Sounds like their same incredibly dense anti-gun argument, blaming the litter instead of those who did said littering/dumping.

      2. Coke bottles are pollution, used needles aren’t.

    2. But god forbid the tech oligarchs face the threat of lawsuits

    3. Just ask Bernie. We do not NEED soft drinks, food, candy, personal care, and cleaning products, at least those that come in containers.

  25. Coronavirus: Is It Time To Panic?

    omigerdweallgonnadie!
    … Eventually.

  26. One more place where we can cut into gov’t spending:

    “Philippines’ Duterte says country can fight insurgents, Muslim extremists without US military”
    […]
    “Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday said Filipino forces can fight insurgents and Muslim extremists without American military help, in a defense of his recent decision to terminate a U.S. security pact…”
    https://www.foxnews.com/world/philippines-duterte-says-country-can-fight-insurgents-muslim-extremists-without-us-military

    Thank you, we’ll turn the light out when we leave.

    1. Sounds like a win-win

    2. Most people dont know this but most Filipinos really like Americans. They consider American products as luxury items.

      Stuff will backfire on Duerte like it did on Ferdinand Marcos.

  27. I am increasingly convinced Bernie is going to get the nomination. I don’t see how the Democrats are going to stop him. And that is the result of the intellectual bankruptcy of the center left. Bernie is nuts but he does offer actual ideas. His ideas are crazy and evil but they do claim to actually solve the problems the Democrats claim exist. That is why he appeals to so many people who are too dumb or bullheaded to understand how evil they are. They are solutions. The other Democrats cannot beat him because they have no ideas other than weak imitations of what Bernie is offering.

    All the Clinton/Obama wing of the party have to offer are meaningless crusades against perceived vice that are more religious than political and the opportunity to give them power and wealth. They offer no actual solutions to the problems they claim exist, just meaningless symbolism and membership in the “tolerant upper class brand”.

    The whole thing is the result of the left’s refusal to face the failure of communism. The far left just pretends it never happened. The rest pretend that it wouldn’t have happened if only it had been done in half measures. Both deny the reality and refuse to face up to the failure of their ideas.

    If this country had a sane political class and education system, Trump would be a Democrat and his opponent would be a Republican who is someone akin to Ron Paul. The left should have died in 1989. The only real options left are full on old school tiny government, gold standard capitalism and Trump’s more nationalistic real politik brand. The debate is not about how to expand the social welfare state, it is about how to manage the state we have and quickly to faze it out as it faces inevitable bankruptcy. Those are the debates we should be having.

    Instead we have the fantasy left talking about banning fossil fuels and universal welfare states when we can’t afford and never will be able to afford the welfare state we have. Bernie is going to win the nomination because he is the only one on the Democratic side who is willing to take the fantasy to its logical conclusion.

    1. Not to sound trite, but how much of the continued affection for communism has been nurtured by the sequestering of its fans in academia, and the outsized influence they have on social sciences and media?

      1. I think a lot. And the Democratic Party has only themselves to blame for this. For 50 years they have coddled and excused the extreme left. Whereas every time a Republican running for dogcatcher in rural Alabama says something nice about Jim Crow the media slanders every Republican in America with being associated with him, there are actual Stalinists elected to elective office as Democrats in places like Berkeley and Madison. So the actual radical right has no home in the Republican Party and is minuscule. The infamous alt right Woodstock in Charlottesville had like 600 people show up. You can go to the DNC this summer and find delegates who are full on black nationalists, who are unapologetic Marxists and every other variety of loony leftism.

        The Democrats let the far left into the party and become the majority of their activists and party foot soldiers. They let the far left take over academia. The refused to ever stand up to the far left or admit they had a problem. Low and behold the far left has gained a lot of converts. And now they are tired of being the house pets of more respectable Democrats and are taking over. What did the Democrats think was going to happen?

        1. They elected a socialist refugee who married her brother for immigration fraud to Congress then were too scared to condemn her for anti semitic comments

          1. Imagine if Richard Spencer and Vox Day were Republican members of Congress. Or if David Duke was the favorite to win the Republican nomination for President.

            That is the situation the Democrats are in only with leftist lunatics rather than far right lunatics. Every center left idiot who has ever lived seems to think that the far left is okay and not like the far right; that they can control the far left. They never learn. These idiots are going to end up either destroying the Democratic Party and making it a regional party of kooks or if the far left ever really gets into power destroying the country. It is just amazing how stupid they are.

            1. I look forward to the end of the Democrat Party because most Americans will utterly reject Communism of Bernie Sanders.

    2. What is mindblowing is the attitude on the Left that all that matters is campaign promises. Not whether it makes fiscal sense. Not whether government has the authority. Not even if it breaks the physical laws of the universe. All the matters is if it sounds good to the voters who do not think the current state of affairs is fair to them. That you cannot govern that way is dismissed as irrelevant.

      1. That is because the Democratic Party outside of Bernie is selling a brand. Obama didn’t run on any actual policies. He ran on the proposition that voting for him made you a part of history and a member of the tolerant and enlightened elite. No one who voted for Obama can tell you anything about what he actually did or stood for. It wasn’t about policy. It was about virtue signaling and feelings.

        So, of course none of their policies are realistic. They don’t have to be. That is not the point. The point is to give voters a reason to feel good about themselves and that they are part of a morally an intellectually superior brand. That is it.

      2. “What is mindblowing is the attitude on the Left that all that matters is campaign promises. Not whether it makes fiscal sense. Not whether government has the authority. Not even if it breaks the physical laws of the universe. All the matters is if it sounds good to the voters who do not think the current state of affairs is fair to them. That you cannot govern that way is dismissed as irrelevant.”

        Not to defend Bernie Bros, but all the same criticism could be made of Trump campaign and the Maga’s. Remember Mexico will pay for that wall?

        1. You mean the wall that is being built? That wall?

          And saying Mexico will pay for the wall is totally the same as saying we are going to give free healthcare to everyone and pay off everyone’s student loans while suing the fossil fuel industry out of business and literally tearing down and rebuilding 90% of the structures in the country.

          That is a false equivalence that is appalling even by your appalling standards.

          1. The wall that Trump stole military funds to build? The payment he claimed would be in the form of a direct transfer from mexico, just so we are clear? Trump explicit stated in person and on his campaign promise webpage that the payment would be in the form of direct transfers from mexico, not savings or indirect benefit.

            https://www.factcheck.org/2019/01/trump-revises-history-on-mexicos-wall-payment/

            Still waiting on on that “4 or 5 or 6%” growth Trump promised too. We are back to 2% growth, the 10 year average. Another broken promise.

        2. Mexican illegals pay more in US taxes than they receive in benefits, according to unreason.

          That means that Mexicans are paying for the US border wall.

          1. Trump promised a direct transfer from mexico. Still waiting.

            1. No he didn’t. He said that “Mexico will pay for the wall”. He didn’t say that Mexico will send us a cashier’s check or EFT or anything of the kind.

              As far as I am concerned, a tax on remittances from Mexicans living in the US to Mexico would be sufficient for Mexico to pay for the wall.

      3. “on the Left”? Dude, that’s just normal politics.

        Every president has a list of things they’ll accomplish in the first hundred days. These lists are never fulfilled, not even close. But despite promising the sun and moon and never delivering, not only do voters not punish politicians for over-promising, they reward them for it.

        Cut out the “on the left” and your comment is on-point. But it’s not a partisan thing.

    3. One of the other candidates desperately needs to outright win South Carolina, or at least dilute the vote totals, to somewhat blunt whatever momentum he might have at the moment. It doesn’t need to be a blowout, but if Bernie gets within a hair’s-breath of winning SC like he did in Iowa, donors are going to start shifting their money and votes over to him in time for Super Tuesday. There’s a lot of people that still haven’t made their

      The one fly in the ointment here is that, even though Bernie has a far more enthusiastic base than any other candidate, overall turnout has been relatively poor so far. That’s a bad sign going in to a general election with a candidate that has the support of over 90% of the other party’s voters.

      1. *still haven’t made their minds up.

  28. Ask the engineers who designed it.

    The spike glycoprotein of 2019-nCoV contains a cleavage absent in CoV – showing that it was engineered rather than evolved.

    The profit motive. These viruses are innovation. How much will the big biotechs be paid for the vaccine, if they want to release one?

    Is this just another case of smaller government and letting the market decide?

    1. If the virus was artificially created, it was almost certainly created by a Chinese bioweapons lab. So, I am at a loss to see how a totalitarian government creating a pandemic virus and then through its usual incompetence turning it lose on the world can be blamed on the private sector or government being too small.

      I think it is a very good bet the pharmaceutical companies did not develop and release this. Doing so would risk life in prison for those responsible and the bankruptcy of their company. If someone did this, it is much more likely to be a government that doesn’t have to worry about going to jail or going bankrupt.

      1. The Joooooooos did it

        1. The evidence is being censored.

          1. One thing is certain – stormfags like you wouldn’t be smart enough to pull something like this off.

      2. And there is also the fact that viruses are notoriously mutatable. There’s a lot more money to be made in drugs that manage chronic conditions affecting people over 40.

    2. The profit motive. These viruses are innovation. How much will the big biotechs be paid for the vaccine, if they want to release one?

      Considering how those bastards are still sitting on the cold vaccine, I think they’ll hold out for all the money.

      1. Damn greedy Joos

        1. The evidence is being circumcised.

    3. You know you’ll get kicked off Twitter for repeating that nonsense that three different universities have now hinted at, that the coronavirus was created in a lab somewhere. And don’t even think about hinting that the most likely somewhere was the Chinese military’s bioweapons research lab in Wuhan right up the street from the market where the first known instance of the virus in the wild came from. You know, the one where some years ago a group of researchers published a paper on the subject of how a bat coronavirus could be transmitted to humans by way of an activated glycoprotein spike that’s normally inactive.

      1. Mao was reported as stating that he did not care if half of China’s population (at a time when it was approximately 600 million) perished in an all-out, nuclear war on a global scale given that China would still have hundreds of millions of people to rebuild the nation and take over the world.

        If COVID-19 was, in fact, manufactured by the Chinese as a bio-weapon (or, at least, as a precursor to one), then one way of creating plausible deniability would be to deliberately direct its release within China with the understanding that it would then “naturally” spread around the world. And, along the lines of Mao’s thinking, half of China could die and it wouldn’t make a difference because everyone else in the world would be dead.

        1. It is not deadly enough to be a bioweapon. So, I don’t think they released it intentionally. They are communists. That means they could fuck up a cup of coffee and then lie to your face about doing it. So, this is almost certainly the result of negligence and incompetence at whatever lab this came from.

          1. Call it a “dry run,” if that helps put the analogy in context. Assuming the virus was engineered, it may “beta software” running through a few field tests. How far can it spread without detection? Are the symptoms easy to miss? What responses can we expect from the international community? Is transmission explainable with reference to natural occurrences?

            Perhaps this particular strain is not deadly enough; perhaps it wasn’t intended to be.

            1. I don’t think so. The leaders of China are increasingly terrified of their own people. The last thing they would want to risk is getting blamed for a Chernobyl sized disaster in their own country. This is negligence.

              1. It could very well be negligence. I wouldn’t put too much stock, however, in the notion that the Chinese government cares one wit about the people of China. At the end of the day, the average denizen of the People’s Republic is not a Madisonian freedom seeker, but a member of the largest racial and ideological collective in human history.

                Even if evidence of Chinese government malfeasance was incontrovertible, I don’t think it would matter to most people in China. Most of the rest of the world likely wouldn’t care either. China can afford to break ties with the world and suffer the consequences. Most of the rest of the world cannot.

                1. “China can afford to break ties with the world and suffer the consequences.”

                  They thought that about the USSR too. That experiment failed.

                  Tyrannies still have political considerations where they must appease their populations to some degree. What that degree is is the million dollar question.

                  The Chinese units that got obliterated vs US soldiers in the Korean War had 75%+ dead and wounded and they stopped charging. While their units still could function with more casualties than many other armies, they still had a breaking point.

                  Now hundreds of millions of Chinese have cell phones, decent homes, and are not starving. I doubt Chinese resolve is what it once was. Having something to live for does that.

                  1. Compared to China, the USSR was a relatively isolated, economically illiterate communist state that refused to adapt and, therefore, it crumbled. It was all a smokescreen.

                    China is not the USSR and has adapted quite well while maintaining its totalitarian grip on its people.

                    The reason China can afford to severe ties and thumb its nose at the world is because most of the world is more dependent on China than China is on the rest of the world. China can absorb the losses and dysfunction – perhaps not for long, but still longer than the rest of the world.

                    Obviously this is hyperbole to make a point, but if China ends up with a million people while the rest of the world is incinerated, that is a win for China. That is how the regime thinks. The Chinese are nothing if not patient. They think in hundred year terms, not four year election cycles.

            2. It’s not the first go round that you need to worry about. You can catch it multiple times and if you do it sterilizes you. It’s global population control in slow motion.

              1. So you are saying Bernie Sanders released it? Interesting theory.

                1. Well, he is a commie.

                  1. I am not saying you are wrong.

            3. I can refer you to a bunch of bio weapons that never panned out. Ken linked one project the other day.

              Nature is still the most effective killer of humans to date.

              Mao was a moron if he thinks that 50% of China would survive and 50% of other locations would not survive too. Bio weapons are M.A.D. just like nukes. Even a fully prepared nation would experience bio weapon mistakes that would render survival less sure.

              Plus, kids and old people are not the great re-builders of societies. Adults are. China has a similar population percentage of kids to adults to elderly like everywhere else.

          2. It doesn’t have to be deadly to be a bioweapon if you’re planning on using it as a crowd-dispersion weapon. Like say if you had a problem with chronic large-scale protests in Hong Kong, for example.

            1. So let it lose so everyone is afraid to gather? I suppose. I was thinking more that it is something they have developed trying to get a weapon that isn’t deadly enough yet.

              1. Dead people don’t pay for vaccinations.

              2. If it was an intentional release, I would expect the outbreak to occur in Xinjiang where it would be politically useful.

      2. The Chinese virus engineers were kicked out of US and Canadian virus labs for espionage, taking what was being developed in the west to finish in China.

        1. We’ll find out.

          1. People have.

            Wuhan Biolab experts worked in USA (Uni North Carolina) & Canada (Winnipeg) and brought that research home to Wuhan

            The MSM has set its ‘factcheckers’ to refute ‘conspiracy theories’ about the Covid-19 virus. They are suppressing evidence of Chinese espionage at Western universities. Hate speech.

            However, espionage at Harvard University (Charles Lieber and two Chinese nationals) and Winnipeg NML lab (Xiangguo Qiu) is well attested.

            In both cases, there was a connection to Wuhan. Iin Lieber’s case, Wuhan University of Technology; and in Qiu’s case, Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV).

            Zheng-Li Shi and Xing-Yi Ge, leading virologists at Wuhan Institute of Virology, also worked in the US at the University of North Carolina, and obtained US Research Grants.

            Zheng-Li Shi (also written Zhengli Shi, Shi Zhengli, and Shi Zheng-Li) is a Professor, and director of WIV’s P4 lab.

            She and Xingyi Ge did the genetic engineering for Ralph Baric at UNC, to develop a Coronavirus that could infect humans directly without animal mediation.

  29. It is not time for mass panic.
    I suggest we assign the media, and liberals to panic while the rest of continue to live our lives.

    1. We need a panic czar to organize and prioritize this panic. I’m starting to panic over the number of panics I’m juggling as it is, I can’t handle another one.

      1. Relax, at least this isn’t an epidemic.

  30. More than 30 startups have slashed more than 8,000 jobs over the past four months,”

    you don’t suppose this also has anything to do with the new law that makes contract workers employees now

    1. No way. That law means well. The people losing their jobs is just “bad luck”

    2. Or hell, it’s just a normal part if the business cycle. Most startups fail, I’m not sure why this is news.

    3. The problem may be that these business models are not actually profitable, but local and state governments actively trying to kill some of them is surely a factor.

      1. all of the above are true

  31. Conspiracy mongering is always entertaining in times like these. Someone should start the rumor that Trump made a deal with the Chinese to release the coronavirus so that he could use the resulting pandemic as an excuse to cancel the elections this fall and remain President ruling by emergency degree.

    What do you want to bet that could get a lot of traction and freak out a ton of NPC probs if you unleashed it on the various Progressive internet fever swamps?

    1. I all ready heard that conspiracy some where else

      1. I am not surprised. I honestly thought it up myself but who am I to try and compete with the kind of crazy that exists in the Progressive corners of the internet?

        1. I’m quit sure i read it in teh comment section of Huff post when they were claiming Trump wasn’t doing enough

    2. … you do know it’s one of the Trump Administration folks that’s been beating “it’s a Chinese bio-weapon!” drum the hardest, right?

      1. Yes, and they might be right. But that doesn’t mean they plan to cancel the elections and seize power over it. Did you miss that part?

        1. No. I’m pointing out that even as you try to score points against Democrats for hypothetical “conspiracy mongering”, Trump administration officials are actually conspiracy mongering.

  32. “A woman in Utah was prosecuted for being topless in her own home.”

    No, a woman in Utah was prosecuted for willfully exposing herself in a sexual manner to her stepchildren.

    If Reason doesn’t think stepmoms can ever be considered sex objects then I would advise them to research the internet thoroughly.

    1. Apparently children are never molested by step parents. Didn’t you know that?

    2. If Reason doesn’t think stepmoms pick a noun can ever be considered sex objects then I would advise them to research the internet thoroughly.

      Fixed

  33. Hey Reason, can we get a story about noted Libertarian Megan McArdle endorsing socialist Bernie Sanders for president?

    More proof that for the Washington Media Elites, it’s not about Trump’s policies, it’s about Trump himself.

    1. McArdle is married to reason staffer Peter Suderman and definitely is the alpha in that relationship. So, it is a pretty sure bet Suderman will be voting Bernie as well.

      1. It’s been obvious for months that 90% of Reason’s staff is going to pull the lever in November for whichever lefty candidate survives the Democrat Primaries. And if it happens to be Sanders, well then you have to break some eggs to make an omelette.

        1. Unregulated immigration is far more important than stopping gulags and crimethink after all.

          1. People like McArdle would vote for her own death or imprisonment rather than betray her class and side with people she finds unfashionable. I am not kidding. She would never admit that to herself much less out loud. She no doubt has the same rationalizations about how the other side is worse and Bernie can be controlled and doesn’t really mean it and such that every other useful idiot told themselves on the way to the gallows or the camps. But, the bottom line is she is would rather risk leftist tyranny than have to admit that she was wrong about Trump or worse be associated with his supporters.

        2. So? A common argument from Trump voters is that Hillary made them vote for Trump, even though they weren’t previously republican. If Trump is so noxious that he makes right leaning people vote left, then your problem is Trump.

          1. Sure it is. The difference is Trump isn’t Hillary and Bernie isn’t Trump. The argument was correct in that case because we know now that Trump wasn’t the things people claimed he was and Hillary was. Bernie in contrast really is. One thing we know about Trump, he has been President for four years and the Republic hasn’t ended and none of the parade of horribles that was supposed to accompany his election has happened. Bernie in contrast is at best a complete unknown promising to do some very bad things or at worst an actual tyrant should he become President.

            Jeff, you have to be the most simple minded person I have ever seen. There isn’t a single argument that you don’t fail to understand or know how to apply.

            1. I’m not Jeff, you senile fuck.

              And you could have skipped the wall of text and just wrote, “It is when I say it is, and isn’t when I say it isn’t.”

              1. Yes you are Jeff. It is obvious to everyone. Stop using a sock puppet. It is not fooling anyone.

                1. Wrong, John. Like you always are. And it’s only obvious to Trumpettes, for some reason.

  34. Coronavirus: Is It Time To Panic?

    Media says “AAAAAAAAIIIIIUUGGHH!!!!!1!!1!”

    Meanwhile, number of active cases worldwide has been declining for a week: https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/coronavirus-cases/#active-cases

    1. That is interesting and good news, assuming it is true and not the result of governments lying about it.

      1. more likely China will claim their totalitarian practice of shutting down entire cities resulted in the reduction and they will just shut down more cities and lock up more people and kill more pets.

      2. Or it’s simply a statistical artifact – you don’t find cases you’re not looking for and then when you start looking for them you find them. Maybe it’s not that there were many new cases and now there are fewer new cases, maybe it’s that there were many cases being newly discovered and now there are fewer cases remaining to be discovered.

        If there’s 5,000 people in the US who have the coronavirus but only 15 are aware that that’s what it is, how many people in the US have the coronavirus? Officially, there’s only 15 known cases. If everybody goes and gets tested tomorrow, suddenly there’s 5,000 known cases. It’s not that the number of cases suddenly exploded, it’s just the number of cases we know about that has exploded.

        It was the same thing with the AIDS epidemic and people were alarmed because the trendlines of new cases showed 12 billion people would have AIDS by 1995. No, dumbasses, a lot of these people had AIDS all along, they just didn’t know it. It wasn’t just the AIDS itself that was spreading so rapidly, it was the identification of the disease that contributed to the explosive growth in known cases of AIDS.

        1. Also see: autism and anti vaxx response.

      3. A couple days ago I looked up the SARS epidemic back in 2002-03. SARS was also a coronavirus, SARS-CoV.

        It broke in Nov ’02; panic widespread by Feb ’03. By July ’03 it had run its course and completely disappeared. “No cases of SARS have been reported worldwide since 2004.”

        This year’s looks somewhat more deadly than the ’02-’03 virus, but five will get you ten it runs the same way and has vanished from global memory by July.

        1. I think your guess is more likely than the 28 Days later apocalypse the media is hoping for.

        2. I’m less concerned about the virus than I am about how our local governments are going to over-react to it. My nephew’s high school was shut down today because a staff member traveled out of the country over winter break to an unstated foreign country and one of the family members they met with there now has a cough.

          I’m planning for the general public to react something along the lines of our annual snowpocalypse – that is to say, like panicked lemmings.

  35. BTW San Francisco is already declaring Corona an emergency. Do they know something or is it there already but they won’t report it because its rampaging thru the huge homeless population that they refuse to do anything about?
    enquiring minds want to know

    1. If you’ve got a bear sniffing around in your front yard, you might be alarmed. You should be more than alarmed if your house is a pup tent made of pork chops. San Francisco might not have a large number of coronavirus cases, but they know they’re fucked if a few cases get loose because they’re a garbage dump inside a sewer inside a leper colony and they have no defenses against an outbreak.

      1. because they’re a garbage dump inside a sewer inside a leper colony and they have no defenses against an outbreak.

        You’re describing San Francisco ten years ago. It’s much worse now.

        1. In the good old days it was just a garbage dumb. Now it is a toxic waste site.

        2. What would Don Henley say….

          1. He’d say you’re Driving With Your Eyes Closed

  36. If we were testing everyone for the common cold, we would find hundreds of thousands of cases.

    What’s the death rate and R0 of the common cold?

  37. The received wisdom is that bans can backfire, for example, by hampering the flow of necessary medical supplies and eroding public trust.

    Uhh, there are many reason why bans may not be effective, but these ain’t them. And seriously, “eroding public trust”? JFC the fuck are we talking about? If we’ve got a global pandemic on our hands, it doesn’t “erode my public trust” if my nation says, “Hey, we’re gonna tighten up a little on the border”.

    1. And you can’t ban travelers and still make exceptions for medical supplies or something. No a ban means everything no exceptions. God damn people are stupid.

  38. Coronavirus: Is It Time To Panic?
    Media say yes, experts say no.

    What does famed media icon and noted epidemiologist/vaccines expert Jenny McCarthy say?

    1. Also, while I haven’t heard any “experts” saying “it’s time to panic” I have heard experts say that the WHO and some nations, including the US is “under-reacting” to the disease.

      1. You’re right about the WHO. Keith Moon and John Entwhistle may be under-reacting. I haven’t heard a thing from them on this.

        1. Moon’s idea of using gorilla tranquilizers as treatment seems a bit out there.

          1. Knowing Keith Moon’s history, you may not be making that up!

            1. When Moon collapsed at the Cow Palace concert in November of 73 and the Who called a guy out of the audience to finish the show it was because he took gorilla tranquilizers. I am not kidding. Someone gave him one and told him “take a quarter of this and have a glass of brandy and it really chills you out”. So Moon goes “I am Keith Moon, I am taking the entire thing” and drank and took God knows what else before the show.

              True story.

  39. Get this mfin video player off the page!

    1. Reason needs a thumbs up button.

    2. seriously, is it some kind of E!/msnbc highlight mashup?

  40. Major Garrett: “What would you say to American Jews who might be concerned you’re not, from their perspective, supportive enough of Israel, and specifically, would you move the US embassy back to Tel Aviv?”

    Bernie Sanders: “The answer is it’s something we would take into consideration . . . . I am very proud of being Jewish. I actually lived in Israel for some months, but what I happen to believe is that right now, sadly, tragically, in Israel, through Bibi Netanyahu, you have a reactionary racist who is now running that country”.

    https://www.newsweek.com/israeli-foreign-minister-says-people-who-support-israel-wont-support-bernie-sanders-after-us-1489200

    Others are focusing on what this means for Sanders’ support for Israel and in terms of a presidential candidate calling an important ally a “racist”. The implications are much wider than that–and the contrast with President Trump could hardly be greater. Yeah, Trump might call a foreign leader something like that, but would he make a decision about what’s in America’s bests interests based on whether so and so is a racist?

    That was the problem with George W. Bush. That was the problem with Obama. That was the problem with Hillary Clinton. That is the problem with neconservatives everywhere, whose thinking on this is steeped in the Marxism from which neoconservatism graduated. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama refused to work with Putin in the best interests of the United States because Putin wasn’t supportive of gay marriage. When George W. Bush defended the occupation of Iraq, it wasn’t on the basis of what was in the best interests of the United States, but what was in the best interests of the Iraqis and others in the region.

    Now Bernie Sanders is basically telling us that when he’s president, he won’t make decisions based on whether something is in the best interests of the United States. He’ll make it on the basis of whether it’s good for the Palestinians or whether the leaders of country x is a xenophobe.

    If Bernie Sanders or anyone else wants to make the case that our alliance with Israel isn’t in our best interests, then I’m willing to listen, but the question of whether an alliance is in our best interests should be the primary consideration regardless. If it’s in the best interests of the United States to make an alliance with Joseph Stalin, then that’s what we should do. If it’s in the best interests of the United States to make an alliance with Pinochet, then that’s what we should do. If it’s in the best interests of the United States to form an alliance with Putin to destroy ISIS in Syria, then that’s what we should do.

    1. Now Bernie Sanders is basically telling us that when he’s president, he won’t make decisions based on whether something is in the best interests of the United States. He’ll make it on the basis of whether it’s good for the Palestinians or whether the leaders of country x is a xenophobe.

      So, his foreign policy will be identical to Obama’s.

      1. If Obama’s was bad because he took the problems of people elsewhere in the world into consideration over the problems of the United states, Bernie Sanders will be even worse–because his concern for people elsewhere in the world over the interests of the United States surpasses Obama’s.

        Obama foisted the Paris Climate Treaty on the U.S. despite the fact that China and India were building more coal plants than we were decommissioning. That was all about forcing the U.S. to make sacrifices of their standard of living for the benefit of people elsewhere in the world.

        When Trump makes decisions on U.S. security, it isn’t based on what’s in the best interest of the Kurds or the suffering people of Iran. He pulls our troops out of harm’s way because he thinks it’s in the U.S.’s best interests to do so. He pulls us out of Obama’s Iran deal because he thinks it’s in the U.S’ best interests–regardless of other factors. Trump always takes the best interests of U.S. workers into consideration–and he opposed the Paris Climate Treaty on that basis. I criticize Trump for weighing the interests of American workers over the interests of American consumers, but taking the interests of American workers into consideration over the interests of consumers and workers in other countries of the developing world puts Trump head and shoulders above Obama and Hillary Clinton.

        Yeah, Bernie Sanders is even worse than Obama and Hillary Clinton. Ask him whether it’s in the best interests of the United States to be in an alliance with Israel regardless of whether Netanyahu is a racist, and he’ll assume you’re a sicko yourself. In reality, of course, If he’s willing to sell the security of the United States short if what’s in the best interests of the United States isn’t in the best interests of the Palestinians, then he has no business being president of the United States. He should go rum for office in Gaza instead.

  41. Make no mistake, I don’t want people to panic, because there’s evidence it’s starting. Good friend of mine in Spokane made a run to costco and he said there wasn’t a single bottle of drinking water left on the shelves.

    Hopefully this whole CoronaVirus thing will blow over.

  42. ENB, you lying sack of shit, the Born Alive Act is not an anti-abortion bill.

    1. It is if you consider infanticide to be permissible, which is where the pro abortion people are these days.

  43. The only way to tell about the virus is to wait for more data to come in. Markets can’t predict the future with 100% accuracy, but they do a really good job with gauging uncertainty–given what we know now.

    When it’s all said and done, however, I suspect that the spread of the virus will more closely track the mortality rate than anything else.

    “In Italy, roughly 3% of the confirmed number of cases ended in death as of Monday,” notes Kenneth Rapoza at Forbes. “But the number of new cases jumped early Tuesday to 270,” bringing the death rate down to 2.6 percent.

    In South Korea, the fatality rate so far has been 0.9 percent; in Iran, by contrast, it’s an astounding 14 percent.

    An analysis of coronavirus cases in China found a fatality rate of 2.3 percent, though rates varied wildly by age. “No deaths occurred in those aged 9 years and younger, but cases in those aged 70 to 79 years had an 8% fatality rate and those aged 80 years and older had a fatality rate of 14.8%,” reports MarketWatch.

    Much of what we’re reading here is probably bullshit except for the fatality statistics themselves.

    If the no infants died in China, it may be because the Chinese government doesn’t want to report them.

    If the fatality rate in Iran is 14%, it’s probably because they aren’t reporting the number of infections properly. If 14 people died, and the minimum infection rate is 1%, don’t go by the number of infections 100, go by the number of people who died–which is a harder number to fake and isn’t limited by the availability of test kits. If 14 people died, there were probably at least 1400 infections.

    When you’re looking at the spread of the infection, your numbers are limited by the number of available test kits and the willingness of the government to report statistics accurately.

    When you’re looking at the number of fatalities and deriving an infection rate from that, fatality numbers are harder to fudge. Every time someone dies, they typically have family and friends who are mourning them. It’s harder to brush that under the rug.

    1. “Much of what we’re reading here is probably bullshit except for the fatality statistics themselves.”

      Agreed. There’s a guy on Twitter who was showing with some simple curve-fits on Chinese reported case data that China was going to make it look like the epidemic was dying out, and that therefore the country could go back to work. The inflection point of rate of reported cases was exactly when Xi gave a speech about China recovering from this virus.

      They are going to go back to work—my guess is around March 15, but maybe earlier—and fade the effect of the virus on the working population. Sick people will be yanked out, and sent to one of those new hospitals in Wuhan. The rest will be told to get back to work.

      It may even be rational to do that, if the population effects from civil disorder arising from China being economically shuttered for the three-six months it would take for this thing to burn out naturally, would be more than the effects of increased transmissibility of the disease within China from eliminated widespread quarantine measures. My opinion is that China’s economy and social cohesion can last less under quarantine than America’s economy. Oh, and the Dow dropped yet another 800+ today.

      China will scream that any accusations that they released the bug by accident, or that it’s still raging in their country, are racist, and they will have no end of useful idiots who will carry their water. Especially if the alternative is an economically harmful travel or goods importation ban.

      Aside, the low fatality rate from this disease is in part due to some rather heroic measures that are able to be employed on sick patients. There are more than a few cases of patients in their mid 30s, no significant co-morbidities, who ended up requiring mechanical ventilation for days. Fine, if you have the beds and machines and staff. This gets widespread, like I’m sure it has in China, and that level of care can’t be provided to all who need it. So the CFR will rise by the time this is all done.

      My guess on global deaths from this is that overall global death baselines are going to anomalously rise for 2019, 2020, and maybe 2021, with an increase of deaths from respiratory illness. Covid-19 won’t be specifically implicated for most of these, and its effects will only be discoverable several years after the fact, when looking at baseline death rates from other years.

      1. I read somewhere where a well known Chinese film director, his wife, and two children all died from this while in quarantine. That would raise some doubt about the claim that this is only deadly for old and sick people.

        I see your point about the Chinese just saying to hell with it and putting a gun to people’s head and telling them to go back to work. But, how does the virus ever burn out that way? Wouldn’t it just get worse and worse until even the Chinese couldn’t make people go back to work anymore?

        1. “But, how does the virus ever burn out that way?”

          That depends. Is there an independent reservoir where the virus can propagate besides human beings? If you think this is a zoonotic bat virus, that can propagate in both human beings and bats, then the virus isn’t burning out as is. It may mutate again into a form that isn’t zoonotic, nor pathogenic in people. Most viable mutations work to increase the viability of the mutating organism, and a virus that whacks its host in two weeks is less viable than a virus that doesn’t.

          Or you can think, as I do, that this is a virus that the Chinese scientists (mentioned by the comments-resident Jew-baiter upthread) were fucking with in one of their labs, and chabuduo took over. Contra a post upthread by someone, the Chinese did let SARS out again, twice IIRC, from one of their labs near Beijing in something like the late ’00s or early teens. Not at all unbelievable that a bat coronavirus that one of the leading authorities on bat coronaviruses was working on—the Li Shi chief investigator has something like 50 cited papers on the subject—got out from their shiny new BSL-IV lab they were bragging about setting up.

          I do not think they did it on purpose, nor do I think they were working on a weapon. I do think they were modifying the virus to see how it bound to targets, whether they could interrupt those targets in a human cell model, and investigate new ways of perhaps vaccinating themselves if a similar virus got out of their vast avian, swine, or other animal pool populations. Mol. Biology science stuff, that the US and other nations do every day, and isn’t a violation of the 1972 Convention.

          Conspiracy to deliberately let this out? Absolutely not. This thing, and we may yet see it, has the potential of putting Xi’s head on a stick. There is zero chance the guys running that lab, or the guys funding them and giving them their orders, wanted anything of the sort. Now, if it is true that Covid-19 is much deadlier for East Asian men, with existing respiratory issues, then I can’t guarantee that a dissident working in the lab might not want to see this thing rampaging amidst the Han…

          1. And all of that babbling didn’t answer your question. (I get carried away sometimes.)

            If there isn’t a reservoir for this, besides other people, and if once someone gets it, they’ve immunity from other infections by the virus, then it will eventually burn out. It can last on doorknobs and the like in droplets, but only, at the maximum, for something like two weeks, last I looked.

            There’s decent evidence that this thing has been around since November. Eventually most people in China who could have caught it, are going to have had it. I don’t think a virus with an incubation period of 2 weeks or more, with asymptomatic transmission possible, is something that even China is going to be able to wall off and let burn out. (Although how many virions are required for infection, and how soon that many appear after initial infection, I couldn’t tell you.)

            So, a lot more people are going to get this, and the vast majority of those infected will live (although with unknown aftereffects). And when the virus runs out of hosts, the epidemic goes away.

            It’s still better than everyone getting locked into their apartments for a month, likely starving or dying of thirst, and their society dissolving into civil disorder.

      2. Economists haven’t taken China’s GDP numbers seriously for years–since before the latest virus. Why wouldn’t they lie when there’s so much more on the line? It’s not like they’re worried about losing the next election if they get caught fudging the numbers.

  44. when the government quits answering questions that will be the time to panic. on a similar note a Sacramento station asked for answers locally and everyone they asked passed the buck up the hill till they were told to call the CDC. I think I’ll stock up on some supplies

  45. “Media say yes, experts say no. Covid-19, known as the coronvirus, will wreak widespread changes on American society and usher in “the end of affluence politics,” suggests Matt Stoller in Wired. “Disruption to everyday life might be severe,””

    I remember these statements from just before the year 2000. It’s nice to see they are being recycled and not wasted.

  46. We’re from the government, and we’re here to help:

    “WASHINGTON—A whistleblower alleges that some federal employees were sent to work at coronavirus quarantine locations in California without adequate safety protocols and then flew back home on commercial airplanes, according to a person familiar with the complaint against the Department of Health and Human Services.”

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/whistleblower-says-federal-employees-flown-from-coronavirus-sites-didnt-follow-safety-protocols-11582840144

  47. “Time to panic?” Seriously? Is there ever, in any universe, a good time to panic? Is this not a branch of the magazine that calls itself “Reason”?

    1. Towel day is coming up. May 25, 2020.

  48. Does no one else remember SARS?
    It was going to depopulate the entire world.
    It turned out to be big nothingburger.
    As a medical doctor, I can tell you the flu itself kills around 3,000 people here in the U.S. every year.
    Pneumonia developing from the flu probably kills another 10 to 30,000 every year.
    This corona virus seems very similar.

  49. Yes, it’s time to panic. No one knows how to contain the coronavirus. The wise and all-knowing government quarantined some people with it at Travis Air Force base. Then someone caught the virus in Vacaville, 10 miles away. They went to UC Davis medical center for treatment, and now a student at UC Davis has it. Unexplained cases are popping up on the West Coast, but they’re not that mysterious.

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.