Reason Roundup

A Second Round of Strict Lockdowns Could Come Quicker Than We Think

Plus: "Jane Roe" in Roe v. Wade says she was paid to lie about abortion, sailors who recovered from COVID-19 test positive again, and more...

|

Developments abroad put a damper on hopes that U.S. life will return to normal soon. Areas of Argentina, Germany, Iran, and elsewhere have seen COVID-19 cases surge again after starting to ease shutdown rules. Now, authorities in these places are once again tightening the screws on citizens' movement, fraternization, and economic activity.

Cordoba, Argentina, "authorized certain activities last week—shops and hairdressers reopened, and visits to religious centers and weekend outings were allowed," points out Yahoo News. "But authorities decided to return to the city's previous lockdown phase after reporting 55 new cases in the last three days."

"When Iran began to reopen late last month, commuters packed subways and buses, young people lined up for takeout hamburgers and pizza, and traffic snarled highways," notes The New York Times. "Three weeks later, the country has been hit by a new surge of coronavirus cases, according to health officials in some of the eight provinces where the numbers have spiked again."

Germany has been heralded as a model of COVID-19 containment, but things aren't all rosy there, either. Several regions have been seeing new increases in number of cases, leading authorities in these areas to extend or reimpose lockdown orders that had been lifted.

Last week, just "days after lifting its weekslong lockdown, Lebanon imposed a new, four-day lockdown due to a spike in new cases," reports Business Insider. And Indonesia is postponing lifting lockdown rules after a new case spike so far in May.

Are Americans kidding ourselves if we think the worst of this outbreak is over for us? Signs point to yes.

"The Maryland Department of Health reported 1,784 newly confirmed COVID-19 cases on Tuesday, setting a new high mark four days after the state began reopening its economy," according to NPR.

Wisconsin has also been letting up on restrictions. An Illinois man who traveled to Wisconsin to partake in activities his state still banned told the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel "I know it's probably bad. I'm just kind of done with it all."

And yet "coronavirus is certainly not done burning its way through the global population," the paper points out. "Wisconsin set a single-day record of cases Saturday as 502 people tested positive for the coronavirus."

Texas and Alabama have also seen surges in confirmed COVID-19 cases since starting to ease lockdown rules. But authorities in these states say the increases could be attributed to more testing, not increasing levels of outbreak. And there may also be data issues. "Texas health officials are combining some antibody tests along with more common viral tests in statewide COVID-19 tracking data," the Texas Observer reported last week.

Results in Arizona are also mixed.

Looking at these numbers, some will be tempted to call off the easing of lockdown orders or reinstitute strict rules. But these rules are only as good as the number of people willing to follow them—and both data and anecdotal evidence suggest that fewer and fewer people are. If the U.S. wants to avoid more COVID-19 case surges, we're going to need way more focus on how to mitigate transmission without simply shutting everything down and ordering people to stay home. The "open up" vs. "shut things down" dichotomy was never a good one; how well we fare going forward will depend on how fast we can move beyond it.


FREE MINDS

"If a young woman wants to have an abortion, that's no skin off my ass. That's why they call it choice," said Norma McCorvey—better known as "Jane Roe" (yes, that Roe)—in an interview with documentary filmmakers before she died in 2017.

Back in 1995, the woman at the center of the case that legalized abortion across the U.S. claimed to have had a change of heart. McCorvey said then she was opposed to legal abortion. But in newly released documentary footage, recorded in 2017, McCorvey said she only claimed to be against abortion because the anti-abortion group Operation Rescue had paid her to say so.

"With an issue like this there can be a temptation for different players to reduce 'Jane Roe' to an emblem or a trophy, and behind that is a real person with a real story. Norma was incredibly complex," said documentary director Nick Sweeney.


FREE MARKETS

A ban on debt-collection calls is unconstitutional, according to the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts. In ACA International v. Healey, the court ruled that Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey's ban on debt collection calls and lawsuits, which was instituted in March, is a violation of the First Amendment.

From The National Law Review:

The Attorney General argues that there is substantial government interest to (1) protect consumers from debt collectors that "wield undue influence in view of the coronavirus"; (2) protect the tranquility of the home while consumers are stuck inside and (3) protect consumer's well-being during the pandemic.

The Court did not find any of the government's interests to be persuasive.  There was no evidence that consumers are more susceptible to undue influence by debt collectors during the pandemic. Nor was there evidence that a debt collector is more likely to chase the consumer down in person. As to the argument regarding a consumer's well-being, the Court notes that the regulation simply provides relief for unwanted phone calls and does not actually offer any relief from the debt itself.

More here.


QUICK HITS

• U.S. sailors who tested positive for COVID-19 and then recovered have once again tested positive for the virus. Scientists still aren't sure what this means.

• McDonald's workers are suing over an alleged lack of protections against COVID-19.

• "Coronavirus cases are spiking from India to South Africa and Mexico in a clear indication the pandemic is far from over," reports the Associated Press. "Cases are still rising across Africa, where all 54 nations have seen confirmed infections for a total of over 88,000 cases and 2,800 deaths, according to the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention." And "Latin America has seen more than 480,000 confirmed coronavirus cases and about 31,000 dead."

• A new study conducted by scientists from nine countries considers different lockdown strategies and suggests that the best option might involve tight "mitigation measures" for 50 days followed by easing these restrictions for 30 days.

Advertisement

NEXT: What Did You Just Say?

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. <i.U.S. sailors who tested positive for COVID-19 and then recovered have once again tested positive for the virus. Scientists still aren't sure what this means.

    Other than we should all PANIC.

    1. Hello.

      55 cases! SHUT HER DOWN!

      Seriously though. I think it’s pretty obvious there will be flare ups and the virus will continue to swirl. We’ve been cowering in homes fo two months like a bunch of sissies.

      The point is, a complete lockdown only delays and damages. We have to learn to live with it.

      Keep the vulnerable as safe as we can and we have to move forward. We’re luck the Coronazilla isn’t as lethal across all age groups as first thought. We can live with it with PRAGMATIC precautions.

      I don’t see any other play here unless someone wants to go with the ‘no normal until a vaccine’ crowd. I personally think it’s utterly irresponsible to ram a vaccine through without long-term testing and verification. I’d be suspicious if we have a bad flu season this fall/winter and one magically arrives. And worse, from China.

      Be careful what you wish for.

      In any event, people will slowly withdraw from doing things voluntarily if they see it comes back. No need for low IQ politicians and compromised health bureaucrats to dictate to us on how to live out lives.

      I think a reasoned, libertarian position is to ket the people govern themselves through proper information and guidelines. Leaders should be less authoritarian at this point.

      But that’s me.

      1. “setting a new high mark four days after the state began reopening its economy”
        Four days after??? Too soon to blame that on reopening given incubation period and all that blah blah blah sciency stuff

        1. The only valid science is the science that tells us to NEVER STOP PANICKING. The science that disagrees with that just wants to kill your grandma.

    2. That’s a given regardless of the news.

    3. Are they getting sick? If not, why does it matter?

      1. According to the left, if someone has even one residual copy of the virus left in their system, there could be a .00001 percent chance that they could pass it to their girlfriend, and the girlfriend could pass it to her third cousin, and the third cousin could pass it to you, and you could pass it to your kindly but vulnerable grandmother.

        Therefore, it’s absolutely imperative that we scrap the constitution and implement the New World Order, Agenda 21, and ChiCom-style one party totalitarianism around the world immediately.

    4. Even explains in the article that it’s not a new infection, but viral debris.

      From having seen how my wife’s dealt with this you have a very long tail on recovery with a lot of inflammation. It’s very possible to end up relapsing (in terms of having respiratory issues) if exposed to irritants, inflammatory things, or mucus producing things, without it being a new infection.

      Week 4/5 for her involved a lot of chest congestion and coughing, from the googling I did likely was actually clearing viral debris.

      From my undeducated position it’s a thing to be wary of, on an individual level (this isn’t the flu where after 2 weeks on the long end you’re 100% fine) to take time recovering, but not a sign that the virus is like going dormant and storming back.

      1. “viral debris”
        good band name

      2. Even some flu bugs can be pretty potent. My oldest daughter and I caught particularly nasty one back when she was a baby, and we battled that shit for a solid month, with spiking 103-degree fevers, chills, stomach-twisting nausea, fatigue, the works, during that entire time. She was still getting ear infections from it up to six weeks after getting sick, to the point she had to be prescribed a much stronger antibiotic to finally clear the remainder of that crap out of her system.

    5. Some people need some extra medical help to assist their immune system getting rid of viruses.

      Billions of humans were exposed but never infected, had minor symptoms, or were asymptomatic.

      What we know is that the Media people should be ignored and never have any power in government. They are nearly all idiots trying to destroy the USA and limit freedom.

      1. Nearly all? You are very optimistic.

  2. “Credentialed experts”, “journalists”, all tossing any credibility they may have possessed into the shitter; welcome to the low trust culture:

    https://amgreatness.com/2020/05/18/fraudulent-models-fatal-consequences/

    Ferguson’s model, however, isn’t the only fraudulent model that led to destructive policy decisions. Citing the Imperial College model, Dr. Christopher Murray, director of the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation in Seattle, produced another set of graphs at the end of March that expanded on Ferguson’s pseudoscientific “social distancing” demands.

    Much like Ferguson, Murray portrayed plague-like conditions in the United States once COVID-19 took hold.

    “In addition to a large number of deaths from COVID-19, the epidemic will place a load on health system resources well beyond the current capacity of hospitals in the USA…especially for ICU care and ventilator use,” Murray warned. “The estimated excess demand on hospital systems is predicated on the enactment of social distancing measures within three weeks in all locations that have not done so already and maintenance of these measures throughout the epidemic.”

    Birx and Dr. Anthony Fauci, without subjecting the raw paper to any peer review, presented Murray’s charts to President Trump at the end of March. According to the president, they then insisted he “shut everything down.” The CDC guidance, first implemented for 15 days, was extended to April 30. (Murray’s model has been updated 16 times since its March 26 release.)

    Subsequently, the world’s most robust economy has crashed, 36 million Americans (and counting) have applied for unemployment, critical health care services have been delayed, kids will be out of school for at least five months, and economists are predicting a double-digit drop in economic growth for at least the next quarter—yet none of Murray’s most outlandish projections, including hospital bed and ventilator shortages, materialized.

    1. https://theintercept.com/2020/05/18/ben-smiths-nyt-critique-of-ronan-farrow-describes-a-toxic-corrosive-and-still-vibrant-trump-era-pathology-resistance-journalism/

      EVER SINCE DONALD TRUMP WAS ELECTED, and one could argue even in the months leading up to his election, journalistic standards have been consciously jettisoned when it comes to reporting on public figures who, in Smith’s words, are “most disliked by the loudest voices,” particularly when such reporting “swim[s] ably along with the tides of social media.” Put another way: As long the targets of one’s conspiracy theories and attacks are regarded as villains by the guardians of mainstream liberal social media circles, journalists reap endless career rewards for publishing unvetted and unproven — even false — attacks on such people, while never suffering any negative consequences when their stories are exposed as shabby frauds.

      It is this “resistance journalism” sickness that caused U.S. politics to be drowned for three years in little other than salacious and fact-free conspiracy theories about Trump and his family members and closest associates: Putin had infiltrated and taken over the U.S. government through sexual and financial blackmail leverage over Trump and used it to dictate U.S. policy; Trump officials conspired with the Kremlin to interfere in the 2016 election; Russia was attacking the U.S. by hacking its electricity grid, recruiting journalists to serve as clandestine Kremlin messengers, and plotting to cut off heat to Americans in winter. Mainstream media debacles — all in service of promoting the same set of conspiracy theories against Trump — are literally too numerous to count, requiring one to select the worst offenses as illustrative.

      Under that warped rubric — in which spreading falsehoods is commendable as long as it was done to harm the evildoers — the New Yorker’s Jeffrey Goldberg, one of the most damaging endorsers of false conspiracy theories about Iraq, rose to become editor-in-chief of The Atlantic, while two of the most deceitful Bush-era neocons, Bush/Cheney speechwriter David Frum and supreme propagandist Bill Kristol, have reprised their role as leading propagandists and conspiracy theorists — only this time aimed against the GOP president instead of on his behalf — and thus have become beloved liberal media icons. The communications director for both the Bush/Cheney campaign and its White House, Nicole Wallace, is one of the most popular liberal cable hosts from her MSNBC perch.

      Exactly the same journalism-destroying dynamic is driving the post-Russiagate media landscape. There is literally no accountability for the journalists and news outlets that spread falsehoods in their pages, on their airwaves, and through their viral social media postings.

      1. There is a special place in hell for these psychotic journo-lists.

        1. Between lockdown induced economic disaster and years of divisive conspiracy theories, all resulting in batshit crazy emotional responses, the Ruling Class needs to no longer rule.

          1. They need to be violently purged

            1. Methinks the tree of liberty needs watering.

              1. No shit.

                If there’s another over reaction and lockdowns, people need to storm the Bastille.

                We’ve pushed the lockdown thing as far as it can go. Continuing it keeps us in a vicious cycle of stupidity.

                We’ve done enough damage.

                1. Continuing the lockdowns will stretch out the time we need to be worried about it. Open up and let the people take chances as they wish, and herd immunity will be reached.

          2. There is no ruling class. People vote for the leaders they have. they really don’t have to, but they keep doing it. why? Because they want it.

      2. Happened long before DJT but likely become much more apparent since.

    2. They pander to the lowest common denominator.

      Last week Ontario Rob ‘Mr. Emergency’ Ford went on youtube to film himself baking a cake.

      While wearing latex gloves.

      The message and optics, to a reasoned mind anyway, were terrible.

      Who wears gloves where bacteria clings to bake a cake?

      He was doing it as a PSA and it was the worst kind of pandering to idiots.

      Instead of pant shitting and locking down life, leaders should LEAD.

      They really need to look up what that word means philosophically.

      Engaging in vapid and stupid theatre is NOT LEADERSHIP.

      1. None of what’s happening is ever going to make any sense until you understand this absolutely critical fact:

        Something like 66% to 75% of our so-called “leaders” are sick and tired of guys like you me and having freedom. They find that state of affairs intolerable and want it to end as quickly as possible. They want us to be reduced to serfs in a new age technocratic feudalism where we only do what they tell us to do, no less and no more.

        Think “Reverend Arthur Kirkland”. That lout may as well be the official voice of these leaders.

        1. Most people don’t want to face the truth.
          If we don’t shoot our way out now, we never will

        2. I’m starting to get that distinct feeling.

        3. Kirkland power-leveled himself on Volokh a few weeks ago and revealed that he’s buddies with PA governor Tom Wolf.

          Considering the goob’s tendency to spout the same posting content over and over, someone with better Google-fu skills than me could probably figure out who he actually is, considering people tend to emulate the same online verbal cues over and over.

      2. But vapid and stupid theater will get you elected and re-elected, so…

  3. Leaked Audio emerges of Biden’s call with the Ukrain over Shokin.

    https://pjmedia.com/news-and-politics/matt-margolis/2020/05/19/leaked-audio-of-joe-bidens-ukraine-quid-pro-quo-call-destroys-msm-narrative-about-shokins-ouster-n407354

    “Yesterday I met with the General Prosecutor, Shokin,” then-Ukrainian President Poroshenko is heard saying on the call.

    “Yes,” Biden acknowledged.

    Poroshenko continued, “And despite the fact that we did not have any corruption charges, we don’t have any information about him doing something wrong… I special asked him to resign…”

    Poroshenko then explained that despite the fact Shokin had the support of parliament, that he was able to get Shokin to give a statement of resignation, which he provided to Poroshenko an hour later.

    “Great,” Biden said.

    “This is my second step of keeping my promises,” said Poroshenko.

    “I agree,” Biden replied.
    ===

    Haven’t we been told that Shokin was so corrupt that everyone wanted him out?

    1. But Orange Man Bad, he will use Covid to kill us all as Putin wants. We all know Putin wants the US destroyed so he gets to face China alone.

    2. “This is my second step of keeping my promises,” said Poroshenko.

      “I agree,” Biden replied.

      Holy Jesus. If you replaced ‘Biden’ with ‘Trump’ and ‘Poroshenko’ with ‘Zelensky’, I’d say you had a no-shit, airtight case of ‘quid-pro-quo’. It would still an open question of whether ‘quid-pro-quo’ constitutes a crime or impeachable offense under the law, but a question that an impeachment trial proceedings should answer.

      The fact that Biden wasn’t the President and presumably wasn’t acting on behalf of the President or the United States should invoke other codified legal specters as well (treason, emoluments violations, etc.)

      1. Yeah, call is bad. Waiting on how the media spins this. Should be fun.

        1. Spins what? I can’t hear you. OMB!

    3. “Haven’t we been told that Shokin was so corrupt that everyone wanted him out?”

      Yes. But only by people that have lied about a bunch of other shit too.

    4. You’re just a lying dog-faced pony soldier.

    5. Has this been verified as real? When something seems too good to be true…..

      1. Yeah, that’s my feeling too. However, again, all of Trump’s allegations were between circumstantial and political nonsense that contradicted material evidence (i.e. any quid pro quo was reached after money had changed hands) whereas all the material evidence against Biden is known and available, jives with the circumstantial evidence, and this drives at mens rea.

    6. shhh, Ukraine is all old news that’s been covered already, why are you trying to dig up stuff that no longer matters and has been put to rest? – Democrats, probably

    7. This was leaked on purpose, I’m telling you this will keep building until the convention, he will be forced to withdraw and they can then pick the one they want. I still go with Michelle, she is the only one in my book who has a chance of beating Trump.

      1. “I still go with Michelle, she is the only one in my book who has a chance of beating Trump.”

        She won’t take the nomination unless she thinks it’s the only way she and Barack, and all of the others in their coterie, can avoid prison. I don’t blame her: the job eats people. Great way to age 20 years in 4 to 8.

        OTOH, Trump seems to thrive on the job. Maybe it’s just great stage makeup?

        1. agreed, also she’s smart enough to know that it’s damn hard to kick out an incumbent president, and seeing as how Trump’s more popular now than in 2016… Unless it’s prison time, she ain’t going for it.

        2. Michael very much enjoyed all his highly paid vacations and other excursions. I doubt he will be able to survive the scrutiny today and also, I am fairly sure he has no work ethic, unlike Bill “BJ” Clinton, though I guess we know why he spent so much time “at work”?

    8. Haven’t we been told that Shokin was so corrupt that everyone wanted him out?

      That’s what those fuckheads DOL and grb were claiming on here just a few short months ago.

  4. Judge in Flynn case apparently wants to allow his specially hand picked new prosecutor to maybe interview witnesses and produce new evidence.

    From the filed brief: “any additional factual development I may need before finalizing my argument in opposition”

    https://townhall.com/tipsheet/mattvespa/2020/05/19/yes-it-looks-like-judge-in-flynn-case-is-trying-to-keep-this-fiasco-going-until-election-day-n2569016

    1. Add the judiciary to journalists and ‘experts’ – welcome to the low trust society. Real shame since it was the high trust one that made us rich.

    2. This judge need to be thrown off the case, thrown off the bench, and thrown off a cliff.

    3. so the Judge is now also acting as prosecuter. wouldn’t that also be a conflict of interest etc there is so much that is wrong with this judge. As Unicorn say he needs to be thrown

    4. I can’t understand why a recusal motion hasn’t been upheld by the relevant appellate circuit. If Sullivan’s public comments about Flynn and the case don’t merit recusal, what does?

  5. U.S. sailors who tested positive for COVID-19 and then recovered have once again tested positive for the virus. Scientists still aren’t sure what this means.

    It’s impossible to know what this means unless we know what was tested. Was it antibody levels or viral count that was measured?

    1. False positives, false negatives, antibodies aren’t 100% for any infections, etc.

      We will, of course, panic and shut down until we get a vaccine, which won’t work because antibodies provide no protection, so PANIC!!!!!!!!!

      AAAAHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    2. I would think that it means that it was the genetic test for the virus itself as a positive antibody test would be the expected result.

    3. What is being measured is the willingness of the public to be held captive by a boogeyman.

      1. Bingo.
        And those who are willing to advocate for that boogeyman, thus not just the technocrats, are no better than German villagers supplying the death camps

  6. A new study conducted by scientists from nine countries considers different lockdown strategies and suggests that the best option might involve tight “mitigation measures” for 50 days followed by easing these restrictions for 30 days.

    Step 3: Profit.

    1. Yeah, but what’s step 2?

  7. https://twitter.com/cabot_phillips/status/1262441045197049856

    Professors around America have been caught selling secret research to the Chinese Communist Regime.

    The national media won’t cover it, so here’s a thread of those who have been caught so far:

    1. You know.

      Those professors should be thrown in prison for life.

      But in reality. A greater fate they should face.

      That’s about as evil a thing you can do to your nation: Being treacherous.

      There’s a reason why throughout history it’s punishable by death. They’re as bad as the common snitch. And see what the mob does to snitches.

      The Nuremberg trials were a joke. Those psychopath serial killers didn’t deserve a trial. They deserved execution.

      Neighbours who call the cops on a neighbour deserve to be pelted with fruits and vegetables and humiliated at the next block party.

      That’s how you run things.

      1. Look at the photos. They aren’t betraying THEIR nation.

        1. spying has been traditionally punishable by death too. Hell, the chinese killed like 30+ CIA agents and associates in China under the Obama administration, due to the administration’s fuckups.

          1. I think they were assets, not agents.
            That is, not American but Chinese spies for us

            1. But Russia is the real hacking threat…

    2. FREE TRADE!!!

    3. Communists? In academia? Must have escaped from a zoo…

    4. New Chinese Exclusion Act today.

  8. Planned Parenthood falsified requests for PPP loans that were solely meant for businesses under 500 employees, which Planned Parenthood does not qualify for.

    https://townhall.com/tipsheet/bethbaumann/2020/05/19/planned-parenthood-received-millions-in-ppp-funds-and-now-theyre-being-told-to-return-the-money-n2569129

    1. Man I hope you get paid for all your low effort spam on here.

      1. I hope more than your fifty-cents, anyway.

      2. I have a real job. You? The 5 minutes out of my day to link stuff isn’t exactly a tough mental exercise like it is for you writing out a single sentence.

    2. That’s okay, the baby abattoir crowd will just call anyone who enforces the request ‘anti-woman’ and ‘sexist’ until they back off.

      1. That’s racist!

  9. Gun Control Groups rebranding as “Gun Safety Advocates”… problem… they don’t know anything about gun safety.

    https://bearingarms.com/tom-k/2020/05/19/which-side-really-cares-about-gun-safety-anyway/

    1. Heh. My pistol is so safe it is banned in CA.

  10. “But in newly released documentary footage, recorded in 2017, McCorvey said she only claimed to be against abortion because the anti-abortion group Operation Rescue had paid her to say so.”

    Or maybe the new film makers paid her to say this in 2017? Once you admit you’re willing to lie for money, who cares what you say?

    1. I recall a popular book on constitutional law which unquestioningly repeated her claim to have gotten pregnant via rape.

  11. //If the U.S. wants to avoid more COVID-19 case surges, we’re going to need way more focus on how to mitigate transmission without simply shutting everything down and ordering people to stay home//

    If **individuals** want to avoid contracting the virus, they can stay home and avoid public transportation and large gatherings. If they don’t really care and determine their risk is low, they can go about their business.

    The country is not a monolithic hivemind. We don’t need a uniform approach. We don’t need to cripple the ability of individuals to make choices for themselves.

    1. How dare you!

    2. We don’t need to cripple the ability of individuals to make choices for themselves.

      We don’t. They do.

    3. I remember arguing this back during the measles outbreak at Disneyland a few years ago. Otherwise liberty-loving parents were going nuts that “science deniers” wouldn’t vaccinate their kids. I pointed out that they may be stupid, but a country that has the power to stick needles in your kids’ arms is a country without limits.

      These parents then came back with, “But you have to protect the children. Kids who are immune-suppressed, or who are younger than the age of measles vaccination could get it.”

      Why the fuck are you taking your immune-suppressed or 3 week old baby to Disneyland? Can people please take a little responsibility for themselves?

      Likewise, I have friends whose older mom lives with them. They are being very careful about the comings and goings in their house. My house is different. There is very little risk to people here, and we should be allowed to act accordingly.

  12. Are Americans kidding ourselves if we think the worst of this outbreak is over for us? Signs point to yes.

    I’m beginning to suspect life is starting to involve risk.

    1. but no reward

  13. https://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2020/05/19/the_covid_spike_in_reopened_texas_cnn_gets_it_wrong_143239.html

    One way to help sort this out is to look at the percentage of tests that are positive. A declining rate of positive tests suggests that this really is a story of a wider net being cast, rather than increased infections driving testing. Indeed, that’s what we see in Texas, where the percentage of tests being returned positive is at a two-month low.

    What CNN has probably discovered is not that Texas’ reopening is driving an increase in cases. Instead, it seems to have discovered yet another outbreak in meatpacking plants, a story on which CNN has reported elsewhere and which has been covered in the Lone Star State for going on a month now. These outbreaks should not be waved away; they represent a genuine problem, though this problem is mitigated by the fact that there are relatively few sick and/or elderly workers on meatpacking floors. At the same time, it has very little to do with the merits of re-opening the economy at this point.

    1. Follow the deaths. They can’t fake deaths.

      But even if the rate increases, we should not restart lockdowns. Otherwise it’s a repeated sequence of lockdown/open up until herd immunity is reached.

      1. Hospitalizations have been flat in Texas basically since they started keeping track in early April.

  14. I say screw a second lockdown. We should just take the hit if the virus comes back, and try to come out of this with an intact economy for the survivors.

    1. Out of curiosity, what do you do for a living? There’s a Brett Bellmore who’s a lawyer in Wisconsin, but you’ve said in the past that you’re in your 60s, and this guy looks barely old enough to shave. You’ve write like an attorney, yet you’ve mentioned having a science degree and doing manual labor. It’s a source of constant intrigue for me.

      1. You’re also too old to be the Canadian hockey defenseman.

        1. Brett, you’re about to be doxxed, say nothing.

          1. Heh, no, I’m genuinely curious about him. He seems like such a multifaceted person that I have to think he has a fascinating life story.

            1. So dreamy…..

            2. So more obsessive stalking than doxing?

            3. Some may be ‘padding his resume’ to establish credibility on various topics, or simply exaggeration.

              1. I’ve never seen Brett talk about what he does

    2. Absolutely. And screw this lockdown too.

    3. Raz al Gul said, it’s a trap.

  15. “Wisconsin set a single-day record of cases Saturday as 502 people tested positive for the coronavirus.”

    I think it’s the tests that are infecting people. How else can you explain new cases suddenly being reported after they increased the number being tested???

    1. Exactly. I’m surprised that ENB didn’t mention that there were also a record number of tests on Friday. Wait. I’m not surprised.

      She might also want to mention that we’ve had less than 200 positives yesterday. I mean, if we’re going to cherry-pick numbers, we might as well mention that, right?

  16. …McCorvey said she only claimed to be against abortion because the anti-abortion group Operation Rescue had paid her to say so.

    She sounds like she would have been an iffy mother.

  17. So Jane Row said she lied for years for money, but is telling the truth now. An admitted liar is to be believed?

    1. What difference does it make either way? Why would anyone’s views on abortion have anything to do with what this woman has to say? She was just used as a test case. Her particular motivations or beliefs are irrelevant.

      1. On the subject of legal abortion, her thoughts are irrelevant. But knowing she is a paid liar going into watching a documentary is relevant and can help one form an opinion on the documentary. How the producers handle that can inform the viewer on other matters; like if the documentary is actually trustworthy.

        1. Yes, matters like did the filmmakers pay her to say “she lied for years for money”?

    2. That works for democrats, why not her?

  18. …the court ruled that Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey’s ban on debt collection calls and lawsuits, which was instituted in March, is a violation of the First Amendment.

    If the First Amendment isn’t about protecting people from the choices they’ve made then I guess I just don’t understand what it’s all about.

  19. “Texas and Alabama have also seen surges in confirmed COVID-19 cases since starting to ease lockdown rules. ”

    Do they have anybody at reason who understands math or statistics?

    https://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2020/05/19/the_covid_spike_in_reopened_texas_cnn_gets_it_wrong_143239.html

    Does ENB just want to admit she only watches CNN at this point?

    1. “Results in Arizona are also mixed.”

      No, they aren’t. The Hill is literally claiming a spike from the same day that things “reopened” which it largely hasn’t. Testing has increased. Full stop.

      Please take a statistics class. Think logically. Stop being a scared child.

      1. And for those that still don’t understand, there is an incubation period for the virus. Positive tests won’t report on those infected that day.

        1. The libertarian case for panic induced fascism isn’t going to make itself. ENB is in a dying industry; no contrarian views here.

        2. There’s also a several day delay on taking the test and it coming back/reporting.

      2. Most jurisdictions don’t report everyday. They report every other day or every few days. So one day you’ll see no new cases (or only a couple), and then suddenly you’ll see a spike in new cases. And the media breathlessly reports it as a new outbreak, when in fact it should be placed on a curve to evaluate it in context.

        1. “evaluate it in context.”

          Phffffft
          context is contrary to clickbait

        2. ENB:
          Remarkably the number of deaths spikes every Monday. People just don’t die on the weekend! Let’s institute the 7-day weekend!

          Prog logic.

      3. “The Maryland Department of Health reported 1,784 newly confirmed COVID-19 cases on Tuesday, setting a new high mark four days after the state began reopening its economy, in rural areas that still haven’t had many cases since day 1” according to NPR.

        FTFY

        Keep Montgomery, PG and Baltimore City locked down if you want (fuckers are assholes anyway). Here in Carroll County we are opening up!

    2. Heard some Texas mayor on NPR this morning. After the NPR guy made it sound like there was a real spike in infections, the mayor made it pretty clear that it was all down to extra testing done at the meat packing plant in the city.

      1. I think it’s pretty much proven that the media is the most despicable profession on the planet at this point. Whores have more decency and are less shameless.

        1. Remember when the entire media had a panic attack over Trump’s comments on the Access Hollywood tape? While this was going on, those same people knew that Epstein was raping children… and then decided to cover it up.

      2. NPR is hilariously bad at hiding their bias as a DNC mouthpiece. If they tried playing poker, they’d get cleaned out in seconds because their tells are so blatant.

    3. Hasn’t california had only about 50 deaths total from COVID? like, the entire state, for the time? That’s not an epidemic, it’s flu season lite. I guarantee you they’ve had more suicides statewide in that time

      1. 2121 CA COVID deaths so far, 569 CA flu deaths 2018, 4323 suicides in 2017. Someone less lazy than I can find stats for the same time period rather than over different years.

  20. https://twitter.com/AlexBerenson/status/1263103747372093441

    Hey, it’s “Abolish ICE and all borders” weighing in! Starting to look like Team Apocalypse is down to the true believers.

    1. “Abolish ICE and all borders”

      Sounds like a potential new slogan if Reason.com ever gets tired of “free minds and free markets.”

      1. “free minds and free markets.”

        Yet somehow they are constantly ‘popping up’ and asking for money – – – – – – – –

      2. I’ve got a few.

        Reason:
        “The Complete JournoList Checklist”
        “To Be Sure”
        “Discarding Doctrine For Clique Respectability”
        “Your Daily Twitter Feed Analysis”

        1. Beautiful!

          Also: “All the News the Kochs See Fit to Print”

  21. …the Court notes that the regulation simply provides relief for unwanted phone calls and does not actually offer any relief from the debt itself.

    If Attorney General Maura Healey wants to be governor she’s going to have to do better than this to get votes.

    1. “does not actually offer any relief from the debt itself”
      that will come in the phase 5 relief bill. Brrrrrrrrrrr

  22. I don’t think we are doing this again sorry ENB. This thing was bullshit, it’s apparent it’s bullshit to pretty much everyone at this point, and nobody is going to pay heed to these top men anymore after this absolute farce of disease that largely only kills people over the average us lifespan. Fuck these commies.

    1. Fooled me once …

  23. https://amgreatness.com/2020/05/19/we-were-never-asked/

    In addition to these voluntary measures, mandatory lockdown measures were imposed to “flatten the curve.” They were supposed to save our hospitals and preserve limited ventilator resources. While severe, this mostly made sense, as the risk seemed enormous, and the lockdowns were sold as a temporary measure.

    As soon as the “15 days to slow the spread” began to expire, however, the goalposts were moved. New reasons to keep them in place were proffered, including inadequate testing and the fact that the virus was so widespread.

    After two months with little human contact, tens of millions of lost jobs, and far fewer hospitalizations and deaths from the coronavirus than the experts predicted, many have concluded that these lockdown measures were a mistake. Even if they were once justifiable based on limited information, more and more people are convinced that continuing these measures any longer will be worse than the risks from the disease itself.

    Last year, through an excellent HBO miniseries, the Soviet Union’s 1986 Chernobyl disaster came to life. Lies about risk were widespread. People were told for years that science proved the reactors were safe, only to be dragged from their radiation-contaminated homes with only the clothes on their back. Certain observers, particularly on the Right, saw the series as a lesson in the evils of communism. While it was indeed that, things also looked rather familiar.

    Like our country today, the Soviet Union was full of hard-working and patriotic little people, whose lives and fates were controlled by authorities more concerned with saving face than doing the right thing. As the series dramatized, individualized justice and truth were often suppressed in the name of ideology and scientific progress. Rank and title counted for a lot, while common sense was often neglected. The Soviet Union was a Communist regime, but it was chiefly a bureaucratic regime, where the bureaucracy’s managerial class had privileged lives and a hostile relationship to the common people.

  24. https://spectator.org/will-we-all-be-forced-to-get-covid-vaccines/

    The WuFlu madness is now going to make me into an anti vaxer. Great. I am a supporter of madatory vaccines for childhood illnesses. Those vaccines are proven to be safe and the disease they prevent are very harmful to nearly everyone who gets them.

    A new COVID 19 vaccine would be brand new and have no such proven record of safety. In fact, the first interration of new vaccines are almost never that safe and have to be perfected over time. And the COVID 19 virus is almost certainly not going to be fatal for someone of my age and health and is likely not to give my any symptoms at all. Given those two facts, it would be foolish of someone in my position to take the first vaccine. Certainly, people for whom the virus represents a greater threat probably should take even an early vaccine. But, someone like me should not.

    Yet, these assholes are going to try and force tens of millions of people to take an unnecessary vaccine of unproven safety and unknown side effects. They are drunk with power. They just can’t help themselves and see this virus as an excuse to derive what can best be called the sexual pleasure of coercion.

    Note that it is the “bioethicists” that are saying we must be forced to risk our health for a vaccine we don’t actually need. Whenever there is some proposed great evil in the world, there is a professional “ethicist” there to rationalize doing it.

    1. Off label use of an anti-malaria drug with a long track record of safety = injecting bleach

      Brand new vaccine with no track record of any kind = mandatory, FYTW

      1. Either take this vaccine that may or may not be safe that may or may not keep you from getting a virus that is very unlikely to do you any harm or we will make it illegal for you to leave your home.

        That is what these assholes want to do.

        1. Isn’t it funny that the NIH and FDA will lay down in front of experimental treatments for years depriving them of willing human trials and are having an obscene reaction to the malaria drug yet got fully behind the public policy of forced imprisoment of people in their homes that has never been tried before and are going to take a largely untested vaccine to market for a disease that largely has no effect at all on the majority of the working population?

          1. I think some of that is how badly the NIH and FDA have been co-opted by the big drug companies. The last thing the drug makers want is for it to turn out that an off the shelf cheap and available drug whose patent has long run out to be effective in treating this. The drug makers see hundreds of billions of dollars to be made either by developing a treatment or a vaccine. All of that money goes up in flames if it turns out this stuff can be treated by something off the shelf. So, they will anything to stop the use of cheap drugs and no amount of proof will ever be accepted that they are effective.

    2. To boot, you’ll be barred from filing suit against anyone involved in this scheme. Maybe there’ll be a means for some government compensation if the vaccine screws you up, but I doubt it.

      The same scientists who 100 percent, pinky swear, tell us that this virus is unquestionably of natural origin, will be telling us with equal conviction that the vaccine is safe.

      1. The feds indemnify all vaccine manufacturers and pay the compensation with tax payer money:
        https://www.hrsa.gov/vaccine-compensation/index.html

    3. I am a supporter of madatory vaccines for childhood illnesses.

      And who gets to decide which ones?

  25. I like the headline in the LA Times every day – “The number of reported cases increases.” If there were 1000 new cases yesterday and one new case today, that is true.
    The deaths per 100,000 for California is 8. For the northern third of California it is 1. For New York it is 146.
    Getting the flu sucks if you get it bad. You won’t die unless you are old and/or have a poor health condition.

    1. even if you are old and of poor health you won’t get it unless other carriers are forced to be near you as happened in New York but didn’t happen in Florida

  26. More bad economic news.

    Charles Koch current net worth: $50.1 billion

    We Koch / Reason libertarians explained that the economy was bad when our benefactor’s net worth was hovering around $60 billion. Now it’s barely $50 billion. Clearly Drumpf’s high-tariff / low-immigration policies are to blame.

    #HowLongMustCharlesKochSuffer?

    1. #ForALongFuckingTime 🙂

  27. Of course there will be more cases as restrictions are loosened. Why would anyone expect otherwise (unless the restrictions were completely ineffective, which is possible, and we are close to herd immunity)?
    The point of the restrictions wasn’t supposed to be to wait until the virus is gone or to stop the spread, but to slow the spread so hospitals aren’t overwhelmed. Why the fuck are people now pretending that it is some magic cure for death? That was never the reasoning behind any of it. God, I fucking hate everyone right now.

    1. And there is also more and more testing going on. More testing means more confirmed cases. This should be obvious, but fucking media pieces of shit insist on making it sound scary. Almost every “spike” that is reported is associated with an increase in testing in a particular place. There is no reason to believe that it indicates a significant increase in the spread based simply on numbers like that.

      1. They aren’t even spikes: they are bundled reports of test results. As far as I know, there aren’t any jurisdictions actually reporting on a daily basis, so of course the data is going to look spiky.

        1. exactly the repots come in on Monday and given to the news on Tuesday and many reports are not daily and not even weekly

    2. There may not be Zeb. If it is the case that the restrictions really are not slowing the spread of the virus, then the number of cases won’t go up. I think there is a good possibility that is the case. The best way to stop the spread of this virus is for people to wash their hands, take care to cover the mouths when they sneeze or cough and be very careful not to touch their faces. Do those things and your chances of catching it go down greatly. It very well may be that following some simple hygiene guidelines slows the spread of this virus about as much as it can be slowed and all of the lockdowns added no marginal benefit in slowing the spread. If that is the case and people follow the hygiene guidelines, the number of cases won’t increase.

      1. Something I was taught years ago by a client always use your own pen. so many even with all teh other precautions are still using the pen and/or teh stylus provided at stores. when I started to make sure I use my own pen my seasonal colds dropped to zero

        1. I just go out in the world and let my immune system do its job and get the same result. Obviously that’s not going to work for everyone, but it works for a lot of people.

    3. The thing I hate the most at this moment is the media reporting on these inflamation cases in children. It’s beyond despicable fear mongering. No context at all.

      1. Sounds like the story of coverage of all of this. But yeah, that one is especially disgusting. Quick find some sad story about children!
        People will always do shit for the children.

      2. and I wonder how many of these inflammation cases are directly related to over use of disinfectants. Even the morning radio news is now claiming a spike in problems from overuse of disinfectants.

        1. any one remember when scientist were claiming over use of disinfectants was going to create a super bug, where are those calls now

    4. I’m with you Zeb. Much like every contrived “war” at some point we lose sight of the original goal so that we can keep pushing the war onwards.

      The stated goal of “extreme social distancing” was to flatten the curve and ease hospital loads. Whether or not social distancing was necessary to do that can be debated, but it’s not even debatable that hospitals certainly haven’t been overwhelmed. Mission accomplished: Full stop.

      End the madness and let’s get back to the old normal.

      1. I have to admit I totally under estimated how depraved people actually are. I really thought that we would do this for a few weeks, it would be clear that it wasn’t needed anymore and that would be it.

        Needless to say, reality has debased me of my nativity. Of course politicians have gotten drunk on having more power than ever dreamed of and don’t want this to end. That was predictable, though it is worse than even I thought. What has been the most shocking to me and that I should have seen coming but didn’t is how many people enjoy being locked in their homes and don’t want this to ever end. It seems to have given some people a purpose in life. They wake up every day and feel they are sacrificing for some greater good. I really think a decent number of people want this to go on forever. They like living like this because it makes them feel important and part of something larger. And that is terrifying.

        1. Yeah, there’s definitely a lot of that going on right now. As the saying goes a recession is when your neighbor loses his job and a depression is when you lose yours. The simple fact is that a majority of the people who are championing this haven’t lost their jobs (yet). Add to that the government keeps printing and handing out “free” money, and you can start to see how people might selfishly want to keep this going. But we can’t lose sight of how selfish these people are for calling on everyone else to suffer economically so that they can feel proud and safe. No matter how unselfish they claim to be, they need to be reminded of that fact.

          They claim they are making sacrifices by staying at home and binging Netflix. The people who have been sacrificed are the business owners who have lost their business and the employees who have lost their jobs. I don’t see a lot of hashtags supporting them.

          1. And that makes it worse. It is not real sacrifice. It is the cheap virtue signaling kind of sacrifice. That is the most addictive of all sacrifices.

            1. Everybody wants to live in the End Times, believer or nonbeliever. It gives their lives meaning, since it puts them in the middle of Something Important.

              God forbid people be forced to recognize mankind muddled through for thousands of years with out them, and will do so again after they’re gone.

              Karen, face it, you just aren’t that fucking important.

              1. It is what happens when you have a society that looses it’s religion. People loose all perspective and go looking for anything that gives them a sense of importance and meaning in the world.

                1. Plenty of Christians believe they are in Revelation’s end times. Its a human thing, not an atheist thing.

                  1. And plenty of Karens are Christian

                  2. “Plenty believe they are in Revelation’s end times”

                    Just because the left is so good at behaving like a pack of little Antichrists.

        2. Yep.
          Which is why they’re blood needs spilling too

        3. I think you meant “disabused me of my naiveté,” but “debased me of my nativity” is an awesome turn of phrase. It sounds positively Elizabethan.

          1. It is. And yes. I hit the wrong letter there. Naivete is one of those words I have never been able to spell and don’t use often enough to make the spelling stick in my mind.

            1. I debase thee of thy nativity, thou ill-begotten whelp of a mongrel cur!

              1. Is that from the Joe Biden insult generator bot thingy?

              2. Haha, John’s going to hell!

        4. John thats what all the self grandizing commercials are for, to make people feel important when they are in reality just pawns in a political game. this has been done at every war so that people on teh home front feel like they are doing something. In this case the warriors are the doctors and nurses and everyone else is the home front. its sickening how people who don’t see it but i guess they don’t know history and how media is always used by all government to manipulate the people.

          1. That is the other thing that is scary about all of this; how the media and all of the big corporations have totally bought into the message.

            1. Well, why not? Big box stores have been allowed to stay open in most states. And no one is shutting down the media at all.

              It’s their small competitors that are being locked out of their businesses. Why wouldn’t Big Business be for this then?

              1. Big airlines, big hotel chains, big movie theaters, big restaurants, big amusement parks, big sports are all taking a beating. Your over-generalization negates your argument.

                Big media are all-in because it’s sensationalism run amok, with morbid statistics and ghastly scenes aplenty. Politicians and medical people like the attention and opportunity for moral preening.

        5. Of course politicians have gotten drunk on having more power than ever dreamed of and don’t want this to end.

          Some are power hungry, but I’m sure more are risk-averse. They don’t want to be blamed for anything, so the easy answer is ‘stay home’. NO elected politicians should be paid during a lockdown; their pay should be reduced by the amount mobility is reduced.

    5. In my northern California county there were 40 cases of covid not one was treated at the hospital they were all sent home. so even teh idea of hospital being flooded with patients was a lie in itself

      1. Maybe was just a misapprehension at the beginning. But it’s a lie now.

        1. was lie from beginning.

    6. We fucking need to increase the rate this virus gets spread around, as long as we don’t exceed what the hospitals can handle for the severe cases — and we now know we have a large cushion in that regard.

  28. Keep the Fear Alive!!! Reason’s apparent stance.

    “Coronavirus cases are spiking from India to South Africa and Mexico in a clear indication the pandemic is far from over,” reports the Associated Press. “Cases are still rising across Africa, where all 54 nations have seen confirmed infections for a total of over 88,000 cases and 2,800 deaths, according to the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.” And “Latin America has seen more than 480,000 confirmed coronavirus cases and about 31,000 dead.”

    So should we be concerned? Well, only if you ignore actual global death rate numbers: As of 2020, the CIA estimates the U.S. crude death rate will be 8.3 per 1,000, while it estimates that the global rate will be 7.7 per 1,000.

    Basically you are seeing about 2.8 million US deaths and 54 million world wide.

    A large percentage of these deaths are the group that Covid seems to favor, the elderly who have comorbidity. We are talking about a fraction of a percent of global deaths that we shut down the world for. At one point do we stop looking at thousands and looking at percentages to stop the fear?

    In the US we’ve had more loss of business, over 100k, that will never recover than we have had deaths. Over 1 full business, of multiple employees, per death. This is insane.

  29. But these rules are only as good as the number of people willing to follow them—and both data and anecdotal evidence suggest that fewer and fewer people are.

    When the governed lose all respect for those who would govern them, bad things happen.

    1. “No society can exist unless the laws are respected to a certain degree. The safest way to make laws respected is to make them respectable. When law and morality contradict each other, the citizen has the cruel alternative of either losing his moral sense or losing his respect for the law. These two evils are of equal consequence, and it would be difficult for a person to choose between them.”

      -Bastiat

  30. Is that a mustache on that lady? Must be a painting of Frida Kahlo. I kid! I kid!

    Seriously, of course there’s going to be a surge! But the goal is not to squash the virus, the goal is to flatten the curve. So long as we keep it flattened we’re fine. Keep the peak below the level were it will overwhelm the system.

    But way too many people got it into their heads that the lockdown is about somehow waiting out the virus. The media certainly bought into the story, and a hell of a lot of politicians did to. But that’s not realistic, it never was and it never will be. We have a year to eighteen months before a vaccine shows up, we can’t be hiding that long.

    Even if some people do want to be hiding that long, there’s no way society can operate like that. Maybe we can dedicate an entire state to people who want to be permanently in hiding. Like say, South Dakota. They can all move there in hermetically sealed buses, and the rest of us can get realistic and deal with a realistic disease. We’ll wear our masks inside stores, but at least we’ll be inside stores!

  31. “Some 108 million people in China’s northeast region are being plunged back under lockdown conditions as a new and growing cluster of infections causes a backslide in the nation’s return to normal.

    In an abrupt reversal of the re-opening taking place across the nation, cities in Jilin province have cut off trains and buses, shut schools and quarantined tens of thousands of people. The strict measures have dismayed many residents who had thought the worst of the nation’s epidemic was over.”

    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-05-18/over-100-million-in-china-s-northeast-thrown-back-under-lockdown

    Some people are taking these new outbreaks that pop up in the aftermath of relaxing the lockdowns as if they mean the lockdowns shouldn’t be lifted. The real lesson to learn here is that the lockdowns are ineffective at killing viruses.

    Lockdowns slow the rate of transmission. They do not kill viruses. Some things kill viruses. Some household cleaners kill viruses, but in order to do so, they need to come into physical contact with the virus. Lockdowns are not virus killing household cleaners, and they cannot come into physical contact with the virus in order to kill it.

    Locking down the economy in order to kill a virus is sort of like invading Iraq and deposing Saddam Hussein because terrorists in Afghanistan orchestrated an attack against us on 9/11.

    As we continue to relax the lockdowns, the virus will almost certainly start spreading more rapidly again–in mutated form or otherwise–as more and more Americans come into contact with each other. Just wait long enough. Once we have a vaccine, we’ll never need to worry about COVID-19 again!

    That’s bullshit of course. It’ll probably be more like the measles, the mumps, and rubella, the vaccines for which have been around since the 1960s–and, yeah, people still need to worry about all three, especially if your kid is immuno-compromised or you’re one of the people for whom the vaccine wasn’t effective (Seasonal flu vaccines, in any given year, are lucky if they have an effectiveness rate of 50%. The mumps vaccine has an effectiveness rate of 78%).

    Locking down the economy in response to the virus is like holding our breath until we turn blue because we can’t get our way. Progressives think they’re acting like adults, but they’re really acting like children. Grow up, already! The world is a risky place, and just because you weren’t aware of the risks before or don’t like feeling scared is no reason for us to hold our economic breath until we turn blue.

    1. Yes. If a government with police power so great it can literally weld people into their homes and leave them to die can’t lock down enough to stop this virus, no government can.

      The other question this raises is why is this virus so much worse in China than other places. Even at its worst in the US, the outbreaks have not had anything like the effect that it has on China.

      It raises two possibilities. The first is there is something about his virus that makes it more dangerous to those of Chinese or Asian dissent. That is possible but it doesn’t seem to be the case here. The second is that China is not doing this to stop the virus. It is using the virus as a public explanation for the need to stamp down on public protest and revolt against the government. I really wonder if it isn’t that and all of these “virus outbreaks” are just cover for the Chinese government suppressing dissent or worse.

      1. Well, I hate to sound like a conspiracy theorist, but look at what is happening in Hong Kong . . .

      2. My first guess is that this is like it is with earthquakes and hurricanes.

        In the aftermath of a hurricane, the survival rates are directly related to standard of living statistics like GDP per capita. When a hurricane wipes out New Orleans, there’s a certain amount of death, but afterwards, the numbers of deaths tails off. When Hati gets hit by a hurricane, the deaths from the hurricane itself are just the beginning. The healthcare infrastructure, the sanitation infrastructure, and the ability of average people to adapt is a huge factor in the number of people who ultimately die.

        For 2020, the IMF has the following stats for annual GDP per capita ($US):

        United States: $65,111
        Hati: $784

        China: $10,098

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_GDP_(nominal)_per_capita

        Do a bell curve with $10,098 and you may be talking about hundreds of millions of people making less than the equivalent of $2,500 a year.

        I would throw out that they also may be more densely populated than people are in the U.S. You don’t live in the suburbs making that kind of money, and the kind of infrastructure and sanitation you have access to isn’t like it is in the United States either. Mexico has a GDP per capita similar to China’s ($10,118 US), and you can’t drink the water out of a faucet in Mexico. I lived in the southern most part (central American really), and even when the cisterns and filters are in place in your house well enough to take showers, they still have to buy bottled water.

        I think that’s the most likely explanation. Our ability to provide healthcare for our most vulnerable and our poorest people is far greater than their ability to do so, and the living standards we enjoy also serve to insulate from the effects of things like natural disasters and pandemics.

        The other thing I’m going to say about the idea that China inflicted this on themselves is that the pandemic and the economic devastation isn’t likely to put down a revolt anywhere near as much as it’s likely to provoke one. Famine, disease, economic devastation, and lost wars have traditionally been signs that the emperor lost the mandate of heaven since forever in Chinese culture, and I suspect we’re likely to see more government opposition to the Chinese government because of the pandemic than there would have been otherwise.

        The bargain between the CCP and the Chinese people has always been that the Chinese people would tolerate the CCP because they were delivering improved standards of living and economic growth. As soon as the CCP stops delivering that, all bets are off–and I think the CCP knows that better than I do. I’ll never put it past government officials to do things that aren’t in their own best interests, but if the Chinese did this to themselves on purpose, I would be astounded. It’s the exact opposite of everything they’ve done and tried to do since China joined the WTO in 2001.

      3. I’ve felt all along that the virus was just an excuse and show in china to lock the country down and get them used to tracking which is required now

        1. You think the CCP needs to provide its serfs excuses for that shit?

          1. Yeah. They were already doing that.

            “The social credit initiative calls for the establishments of unified record system for individuals, businesses and the government to be tracked and evaluated for trustworthiness.[11][12][13][14] Initial reports suggest the system utilizes numerical score as the reward and punishment mechanism;[15][14] recently conducted reports suggest there are in fact multiple different forms of social credit system experimenting at the same time.[16][17] Numerical system has been implemented only in several regional pilot programs, while the nationwide regulatory method has been based primarily on blacklisting and whitelisting.[5][16][18] The credit system is closely related to China’s mass surveillance systems such as the Skynet[19][20][21], which incorporates facial recognition system, big data analysis technology and AI.[22][23][15][24][25]”

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Social_Credit_System

      4. The standard of living of your average Chinese person still isn’t where it is for most westerners, I suspect a lot of them are just in poorer health to begin with than we’d expect. They’re rapidly improving of course, but there are still hundreds of millions of them in pre industrial revolution conditions. Also, their government gives absolutely 0 fucks about the individual, so when the dirt farmer shows up to the “free” hospital I’m not so sure he’s getting the best possible care.

        But yeah, I also wouldn’t put it past their government to lie about these things, or deliberately make the situation worse, in order to further expand their control over the populace.

    2. The real lesson to learn here is that the lockdowns are ineffective at killing viruses, and were never intended to do so. The damned media are promoting this lie.

  32. “McCorvey said she only claimed to be against abortion because the anti-abortion group Operation Rescue had paid her to say so.”

    That’s terrible, if I could find a prominent but mercenary Nazi in ’43 to condemn Auschwitz with some effect for a few bucks, I shouldn’t do it.

    Anyway, something seems very off about her interview as portrayed in that LA Times article. To quote a great sage, “Something’s fucky”.

  33. You know, I am too damn old to go out in the heat of the day and protest government idiocy, but I may have to take up my old ways from the sixties, and revive the mantra “You can’t fight city hall, but you can burn it down”.

    1. That puts a new spin on the phrase “hot take.”

  34. ‘across Africa, where all 54 nations have seen confirmed infections for a total of over 88,000 cases and 2,800 deaths, according to the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.” And “Latin America has seen more than 480,000 confirmed coronavirus cases and about 31,000 dead.”‘

    Hmmm, either melanin is the secret ingredient we need for a vaccine, or Africa might not be be able to track and record metrics properly…

    1. “Black is beautiful” explained the President, as he shocked reporters by smearing blackface makeup all over himself in today’s media conference. Gov. of Virginia said “I told you so.”

      1. ha! Trudeau later praised Trump for experimenting with other colors XD

  35. Btw, do you all remember the gym in NJ that decided to open, to which the cops said “have a good day”? Welp from what I’ve heard, they came back the next day when there wasn’t a mob of people ready to make something of it, fined the two owners, and started arresting people trying to go into the gym.

    1. That is correct. And one patron was arrested for refusing to produce his papers (identify himself) to the gestapo.

  36. Well, I guess the pro-choicers can reclaim Norma McCorvey. RIP.

    Meanwhile, Sandra Cano, the plaintiff in Roe’s companion case of Doe v. Bolton, also became active in the prolife movement and remained steadfast until her death in 2014.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sandra_Cano_(Mary_Doe)

    Then there’s Dr. Bernard Nathanson, cofounder of NARAL and an esteemed abortionist, who inconveniently switched sides and remained prolife until his death in 2011.

  37. In the US we’ve had more loss of business, over 100k, that will never recover than we have had deaths. Over 1 full business, of multiple employees, per death. This is insane.

    Quoted because, well, this should be requoted everywhere. Quoted until people’s eyes bleed. Until people vomit with disgust. Until they’re so fighting mad that they’re willing to do something about it.

    1. So you just want people to die?

      1. …yes

        Not indiscriminately, of course.
        But yea – some people definitely need to be killed for what they’ve done

  38. But in newly released documentary footage, recorded in 2017, McCorvey said she only claimed to be against abortion because the anti-abortion group Operation Rescue had paid her to say so.

    I don’t know if you realize this makes her look as bad as the anti-abortion group.

    1. I don’t think it makes the anti abortion group look bad. What appears to have happened is she told them she was anti abortion to get a pay check. I seriously doubt they went out and found someone who was for abortion and offered to pay them to say they were against it. Why would they do that? There are plenty of people who are against abortion whom they could pay.

      Paying people to be spokesman for their cause is one of the things political activists groups do. The fact that they paid this woman doesn’t reflect poorly on them. The fact that she lied to them to get a paycheck reflects poorly on her.

      1. This is exactly what I was going to say. If anything, the fact that she was willing to lie for a paycheck depicts Operation Rescue as the victim in the exchange. It makes her look like a shameless shill at best, a fraud at worst. On the other hand, you can argue that the organization should have done a better job of vetting her. How they would have gone about doing that, though, I am not sure.

      2. That’s true, it’s not like she was starving in the gutter and the pro-life group came up to her dangling money and laughing maniacally. If someone offers money to do a job they have no way of automatically knowing you’re not being true to yourself when you accept the money. It’s business.

      3. It’s a setback, and one of the prolife ministers who worked with her may have suspected her mercenary motives (or so the article implies – I don’t actually know so I may be being unfair).

        OK, so the pro-choice, “don’t call us pro-abortion” crowd managed to reclaim one of their own.

        But there are still the cases of Sandra Cano (the Doe in Doe v. Bolton, the companion case to Roe) and Dr. Bernard Nathanson (cofounder of NARAL), who not only became prolife but stuck to their guns until they died. Nor are they the only ones.

  39. http://ace.mu.nu

    Jonah Goldberg bluffing his way through yet another Charity Appearance on Special Report, claiming there’s no crime possible in unmasking, claiming that this was all justified because “Obama knew” that Russia had interfered in the election
    Boy Jonah sure does trust Obama. It’s almost as if he’d be willing to, at some future time, offer impassioned defenses of Barack Hussein Obama’s character and integrity.
    I guess Jonah the Duffer didn’t bother keeping up with current events — Brennan suppressed evidence that Putin favored Hillary. But Jonah Goldberg did some light skimming on this issue back in May 2017 and he figures that’s still good enough to get him by
    I do not understand why he does not feel any embarrassment at all at showing up prepared for every single CHARITY appearance on Fox News.

    1. There is a crime in unmasking if you have no good reason for the information. And Flynn was the National Security Advisor to the President elect. The call he made to the Russian Ambassador was cleared by the White House. So, what possible justification did Obama have to listen in on the call? There is none other than in hopes of collecting dirt on Flynn and or Trump. That is called spying on your political opponents.

      If it was so important for the Obama White House to know what happened on the call, they could have just made one of their people being on the call a condition of approving it. Obama was still President. He would have been entirely within his rights to demand one of his people be on what was a diplomatic call to the Russian Ambassador. And Flynn would have had no grounds to object and there is no reason to believe he would have.

      Goldberg is just pathetic at this point. He threw away his career and credibility and rather than face it and try to start over he just digs deeper.

      1. Sadly, empty suits like Goldberg gave up any sense of obligation to honest debate a long time ago.
        Grappling with the actual arguments on the table takes effort, and gets in the way of stoking the unearned sense of superiority to which they’re addicted.

        1. I really liked Goldberg but started to realize what an empty suit and sophist he was when he wrote Liberal Fascism. A lot of conservatives love that book but I never did. It was a totally unfair portrayal of Progressives. I dislike Progressives as much as anyone. But to call them “fascists” in the sense the word has today is complete bullshit.

          Did the Progressives of the 20s and 30s like a lot of things about Hitler and Mussolini? Absolutely. But, people in the 20s and 30s didn’t know how things were going to turn out. They didn’t know Hitler was going to murder 13 million people. Yes, he said he was going to do it. But people didn’t believe him. Progressives are guilty of being naive and not taking Hitler at his word. But, they are not guilty of being fascists in the sense we know the term today because they liked Hitler’s national service programs and how he made the trains run on time. The entire book is one giant slight of hand that claims that because Progressives like a lot of non murderous features of fascism they endorsed the entire thing such that they can be called “fascists” in the way we use the term today now that we know the fascists murdered millions.

          It was a cheap shot and the kind of thing conservatives rightfully criticize the left for doing. Goldberg claimed to be better but really wasn’t.

          1. Fascism is absolutely a type of progressivism.

            1. Sure. But that doesn’t mean progressives are all actually fascists. And the word is too loaded nowadays. Everyone just thinks “Nazi”.

              1. Progressives are a blend of fascits and communists these days.
                Globalism is all about techno-eugenics. It’s about destroying the middle class and cleaving Nan into serf and lord, with a mandarin caste to justify the order

                1. Well, I think there is more than one approach to globalism, but what you describe is certainly one that seems to dominate these days.

          2. But to call them “fascists” in the sense the word has today is complete bullshit.

            That’s a good point, and I agree that Goldberg was trying to have it both ways by using today’s interpretation, where fascism is synonymous with Nazism.
            But it also isn’t wrong to say that today’s “liberal” shares more economic, social and political beliefs with European fascism of the 20’s than any other ideology.

            1. No it is not. I think there are a lot of ways that today’s progressives really are fascist in some of the worst senses. But that case can be made on its own without referencing things that happened 80 years ago.

              1. A lot of people are ignorant of history though and might not realize why putting fascists in charge is a bad idea. It can be useful to reference things that happened 80 years ago and say “Look, these ideas aren’t new, they’ve been tried and it was a disaster”.

          3. Goldberg is a decent blogpost writer. He’s a horrible historian, which is a big reason why Liberal Fascism sucks so bad. I ended up giving up on that tome after the first 50 pages, because I couldn’t take the strawmanning.

            There was a blogger from around that time called Dennis the Peasant who pointed out that its biggest weakness is that Goldberg is so autistically focused on nitpicking policies that he completely missed analyzing the will to power that tyrants always display and how that informs their actions. “Liberals R Duh Reel Fashusts” is basically just a desperate neocon inversion of ideological authoritarianism.

          4. Progs like Obamacare, and it is the very definition of fascism: a system where gov controls prices and exchange with favored companies but does not own them. So, yes, Progs are fascists.

        2. >>empty suits like Goldberg gave up any sense of obligation to honest debate a long time ago

          this. also terrible with dogs.

          1. ?

            I don’t get the “dogs” reference.

            1. He writes about his dogs constantly.

              1. Ah, thanks. Shows how much I read him.

                1. yeah it’s been 5 years but his “hey I’m awesome because I got a dingo and here’s all the bad shit I let him get away with” stories were cringeworthy … bad. owner.

    2. Goldberg is so set in his mind that Trump is inherently wrong and abnormal that he hates to concede that the opposition may be doing wrong to counter him. The arguments Goldberg makes to justify his position that Trump and his clique must be the bad guys are truly convoluted. Unfortunately, he has also said that he has been warming up to the idea that Tea Party opposition to Obama was at its foundation, racist.

      1. I think at this point he knows he will never be welcome among mainstream Republicans again. So, his only hope at having a following is being sort of a Jen Rubin type professional concern troll for the left.

        Whatever you think of him, there is no doubt that Goldberg once had a big following and a great carreer as a pundit. He threw it all away virtue signaling about Trump. I think he got caught up in the conventional wisdom that Trump was going to lose in a landslide. So, he figured the crazier stuff he said about Trump, the more he could claim to be on the right side after Trump lost. When Trump won, he had been so over the top in his criticism of him that Goldberg couldn’t walk back without looking like a complete fool. So, he was stuck pretending that Trump was some kind of special tyrant and denying the reality that he wasn’t.

        1. I am willing to take Goldberg at his word that he genuinely finds Trump viscerally offensive, but that means he cannot evaluate any issue revolving around Trump dispassionately and that he is immensely disappointed in anyone who does not share his revulsion.

        2. “So, he was stuck pretending that Trump was some kind of special tyrant”

          And if you pretend long enough you eventually come to believe your own bullshit, and then you’ll put off any serious introspection because you don’t want to feel like a liar and a hypocrite.
          Then, because you’ve alienated your friends and feel isolated you try and make peace with old enemies by attacking former comrades, which is where Goldberg is now.

        3. Trump is an affront to his class, and proves how so many of them lack inherent worth.
          He is both appalled and deeply threatened by Trump’s success

          1. Trump is Al Czervik and has managed to turn all the D.C. crowd to Judge Smails.

    3. Goldberg going from editor at National Review, to offering an impassioned defense of the outgoing President using national security organizations to spy on a political opponent, is one of the biggest proofs of the UniParty that I can think of.

      Thank God that Trump, for all of the multitude of his flaws, was able to rip the filthy bandages off the face of this mummified evil within our ruling class.

      I look at it, and think of God arguing the fate of Sodom and Gomorrah with Abraham.

      1. Could you imagine telling Goldberg in 2012 that one day he would carry water for Obama over criminal activities that makes Nixon’s crimes look like jaywalking?

        1. I really can’t. It’s just staggering.

          Or telling MSNBC in 2006 that they were going to start kissing up to Bill Kristol and David Frum?!

          It does make you wonder whether the whole News-Washington symbiosis, is just an wannabe egghead’s version of pro wrestling.

  40. “Now, dear reader, I know you’re not a member of an institutionally sociopathic elite caste, trying to extend your power back to the good old days of supreme monarchs ordained by God himself.

    But imagine you were.

    Imagine you were one of the richest people to ever exist, and your vast network of wealth and influence was based on some imaginary money and the widely cultivated belief that “there is no alternative”.

    Now imagine the lies which secure your position are suddenly and violently challenged. Imagine Yellow Vested protests in the streets of Paris, an independence referendum in Catalonia. Anti-globalists, on the left and right, surging in popularity all around the world.

    Imagine Brexit and Bitcoin and PirateBay and the myriad tiny ways people won’t do what they’re told.

    What you’re suffering from is a loss of control of the narrative. What you need, really, is a new story. Something to instil everyone with a sense of common purpose. To frighten them, and distract them and keep them busy.

    You need a threat, something that will make everyone “come together”. To put aside “divisions” and “hate” and all work together to face a “common enemy”

    And enemies, like cakes and lemonade, are always far more satisfying when you make them yourself.”

    http://www.zerohedge.com/political/10-steps-turn-pandemic-brave-new-normal

  41. https://twitter.com/Avik/status/1262716532250906624

    It remains astounding, and underappreciated, that 40% of all deaths from #COVID19 in the U.S. have taken place in nursing homes or assisted living facilities.
    [there is a map]

  42. Whitmer declared a state of emergency for Midland county and urged residents threatened by the flooding to find a place to stay with friends or relatives or to seek out one of several shelters that opened across the county.
    Just don’t go to a second home if you have one.

  43. https://bearingarms.com/cam-e/2020/05/19/wapo-columnist-claims-open-carry-is-a-threat-to-democracy/

    Thus do right-wing extremists exploit America’s lax gun laws for political gain. Of course, the open carrying of rifles or handguns is a recipe for intimidation and potentially deadly confusion, even when not politically motivated. If shots ring out on a street full of armed pedestrians, how are the police supposed to identify the culprit?

    1. which is kind of strange since this democracy was built by people who open carried and was allowed almost everywhere including California until just a few years ago.

      1. Government is becoming afraid of the people. This must stop.

        1. For the Davos crowd that’s a preferred outcome.

        2. No, they need to be so afraid they don’t dare stomp on our rights like they consistently do.

  44. https://twitter.com/nickgillespie/status/1263100832440111104

    In a better America (or one that is much, much worse), this
    @VerminSupreme
    commercial for his
    @LPNational
    candidacy would be playing nonstop from dirigibles covering the skies in NY, DC, LA, etc… Great groove, editing, vision, message, all from a guy with a boot on his head…

    1. That’s a great ad, and it’s true, but it’s getting less true by the day; and unless there’s a revolution in the very near future that halts current trends, it won’t be true at all.

  45. A ban on debt-collection calls is unconstitutional

    Wat? who tried to do such a thing? A law that makes it illegal for me to call you about the money you owe me and haven’t paid? Good grief. How does anyone not see that such a law would just make it more expensive to get loans in the first place? My ability to call you and pester you about paying it increases the chance you’ll pay me eventually, then i’m more willing to take the risk of lending to you. if i can’t do that, I’ll need to make up for it by charging higher interest.

    In the ancient world they used to have “debt holidays”. this was usually a decree from a new king or such that all debts were forgiven going forward, usually happening upon taking power.

    All this did was dry up all credit for the year or two before the debt holiday was expected to happen.

  46. A Second Round of Strict Lockdowns Could Come Quicker Than We Think

    Well they’d better get ’em in before election day, ’cause it’s all over after that.

  47. Well, ya think?

    “Top officials warn of ‘permanent damage’ to economy, need for major policy effort”
    […]
    “Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said on Tuesday the U.S. economy could sustain “permanent damage” if state shutdown measures continue for months longer….”
    https://theweek.com/5things/915454/officials-warn-permanent-damage-economy-need-major-policy-effort

    1. need for major policy effort removal

  48. >>The “open up” vs. “shut things down” dichotomy was never a good one

    “never should have closed anything” much much better argument.

  49. Second round of shutdowns. Finally! A shooting war!

  50. McCorvey said she only claimed to be against abortion because the anti-abortion group Operation Rescue had paid her to say so.

    Why would she have agreed to such a thing? I haven’t followed the link, but, how much did they pay her? And I hate to say it, but if someone’s loyalty can be bought that easily, how do we trust that she wasn’t paid to reverse her reversal?

    1. Thats the tell in progressive insecurity.
      It’s not enough for someone to say “this is what I believe/think”
      Roe couldn’t simply say her beliefs on the issue have changed over time – that she at least wanted to believe what she said then but now has a different belief (because x, y, z).
      No, she has to attribute some nefarious force behind her prior stance and those who believe(d) that way.
      She has to vilify.
      There can be no good and bad, only Good and Evil

  51. “ If the U.S. wants to avoid more COVID-19 case surges, we’re going to need” to find a genie in a bottle and make that our first wish.

  52. The Argentina and Lebanopn data are garbage. The incubation period for COVID-19 is too long for a change “authorized … last week” to show any effect yet. Making decisions to reverse the lockdowns on such flimsy data is the opposite of evidence-based medicine.

    The Iranian example with a 3 week lag is what the incubation period would lead one to expect. The difficult question is whether that’s a real effect or an artifact of testing bias (or some other skewing in the data of this politically-charged issue).

    1. None of that data actually matters though, the data that matters is around hospitalization.

      If everyone in the country contracted COVID tomorrow, but no one actually got sick from it, we’d have some really wild testing numbers that reflected absolutely no danger to society. If all those people had to get hospitalized, the hospital system would collapse and lots of people would die as a result.

      “How many people test positive” is absolutely useless for anything other than fearmongering.

      1. Follow the corpses!

  53. Here’s an interesting idea:
    if people acted like covid was not a unique threat and stopped fear-mongering, tallying bodies, cowering in abject fear and went on with life as normal, life with covid would hardly look different from life without it. Poof just like that this could all be over.

    -or-

    we double down and start making a daily tally for all deaths for any reason and start reporting those alongside cov deaths, cuz that’s about how stupid it is just listing numbers of dead people without any meaningful context.

  54. Stop playing around. GIVE ME MY HERD IMMUNITY! If you want to crawl in a hole and pull the opening in after you, be my guest.

  55. Alright then, come and take it, motherfuckers.

    There is a time for a man of peace, and then there is a time for a man of blood. We have reached the time of the latter.

  56. Those opposed to abortion have done a good job of keeping women like McCorvey as the face of opposition. A deeper dive will likely find that most of the opposition is from men. Certainly male dominated state legislatures have shown some of the strongest opposition. Abortion is an issue that really needs to be left to women. I suspect that left alone women could come up with reasonable solution we could all live with.

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.