Coronavirus

Why Is Donald Trump So Mad at Anthony Fauci?

The president's COVID-19 adviser is not always right, but at least he is attempting to describe reality.

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During a campaign rally in Miami this morning, President Donald Trump suggested he might fire COVID-19 adviser Anthony Fauci after tomorrow's election. Trump was complaining about press coverage of the epidemic when shouts of "Fire Fauci!" erupted from the crowd. Trump's response: "Don't tell anybody, but let me wait until a little bit after the election. I appreciate the advice."

Trump has been openly critical of Fauci, who has directed the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases since 1984, for months. "People are tired of hearing Fauci and these idiots, all these idiots who got it wrong," Trump said during a phone call with campaign staff last month, calling Fauci a "disaster." At that point, Trump was reacting to a 60 Minutes interview in which Fauci contradicted the president's rosy outlook on the epidemic. Fauci's most recent sin was a Washington Post interview last week in which he did the same thing.

Fauci's comments are obviously inconvenient for a president who has repeatedly claimed that "we're rounding the corner" on COVID-19, which supposedly is "going away." But is there any substance to Trump's complaint that Fauci "got it wrong" when he advised the president and the public about how to deal with the threat posed by the disease?

Trump's spat with Fauci is not simply a matter of optimism vs. pessimism about the course of the epidemic. Last spring, Trump embraced an utterly implausible worst-case scenario that projected as many as 2.2 million deaths in the United States based on the counterfactual assumption of "no intervention." The White House continues to rely on that projection, claiming "President Trump's Coronavirus Response Has Saved Over 2 Million Lives."

Leaving aside the fact that the worst-case scenario was never realistic, the administration's math is puzzling. The current U.S. death toll is about 231,000, which does not leave "over 2 million lives" for the president to have saved, even if you assume no one else will die from COVID-19 and you implausibly ascribe the entire difference between reality and the fantastical projection to Trump's policies.

Nor is the current White House claim consistent with what Trump was saying last spring. "By very vigorously following these [social distancing] guidelines," Trump declared on March 30, "we could save more than 1 million American lives. Think of that: 1 million American lives." That estimate was also dubious, but it was less than half the number of deaths Trump is now claiming he prevented.

Even as the Trump administration was citing the worst-case scenario to urge dramatic changes in behavior last spring, Fauci was telling Americans not to put much stock in those numbers. During a March 29 interview on CNN, Jake Tapper asked Fauci how many COVID-19 cases the United States can expect to see. "To be honest with you, we don't really have any firm idea," Fauci said. "There are things called models. And when someone creates a model, they put in various assumptions. And the model is only as good and as accurate as your assumptions. And whenever the modelers come in, they give a worst-case scenario and a best-case scenario. Generally, the reality is somewhere in the middle. I have never seen a model of the diseases that I have dealt [with] where the worst-case scenario actually came out. They always overshoot. So when you use numbers like a million, a million-and-a-half, 2 million [deaths], that almost certainly is off the chart. Now, it's not impossible, but very, very unlikely."

When it was politically convenient, Trump promoted a highly pessimistic scenario that Fauci deemed "very, very unlikely," and he continues to rely on that scenario to make his policies look good. If the question is who "got it wrong" when it came to predicting how many Americans COVID-19 might kill, Fauci's measured comments certainly look better than Trump's scaremongering.

Perhaps Trump means that Fauci "got it wrong" by favoring lockdowns as a response to the pandemic. But during his debate with Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden last month, Trump strongly implied that lockdowns had helped reduce the death toll; he even tried to take credit for those sweeping restrictions, which were actually imposed at the state level. "As you know, 2.2 million people, modeled out, were expected to die," he said. "We closed up the greatest economy in the world in order to fight this horrible disease."

One way in which Trump explicitly says Fauci "got it wrong" concerns the utility of face masks in curtailing transmission of the coronavirus. During his first debate with Biden in September, Trump noted that Fauci had changed his position on that issue. "He said very strongly, 'Masks are not good,'" Trump observed. "Then he changed his mind. He said, 'Masks are good.'"

Although The New York Times and other anti-Trump news outlets frequently imply that Fauci's initial position was based purely on a desire to avoid shortages of face masks for health care workers, that is not true. Fauci did mention that concern in the early stages of the epidemic, but he was also skeptical that general mask wearing would do much good.

"There's no reason to be walking around with a mask," Fauci said during a March 8 interview with 60 Minutes. "When you're in the middle of an outbreak, wearing a mask might make people feel a little bit better, and it might even block a droplet. But it's not providing the perfect protection that people think that it is. And often, there are unintended consequences. People keep fiddling with the mask, and they keep touching their face….When you think 'masks,' you should think of health care providers needing them."

Fauci is singing a different tune these days, saying "there should be universal wearing of masks." He ascribes that change to accumulating scientific evidence concerning the effectiveness of masks and the importance of asymptomatic transmission. "As you get further information," he told CNN in September, "you have to be humble enough and flexible enough to make your statements and your policy and your recommendation based on the evidence that you now have, which may actually change some of the policy."

If Fauci initially "got it wrong" on face masks, of course, that implies his current position is right. But that is not what you would gather from Trump's persistently muddled messages about the value of this precaution. Although the weight of the evidence indicates that it's a good idea to wear a mask when you are indoors and in close proximity to strangers, the views Trump has expressed on the subject are agnostic at best, and his behavior suggests the same reflexive hostility toward masks that many of his supporters express. While Fauci says his opinion of masks changed based on evolving science, Trump has swung wildly between calling face coverings "patriotic" and dismissing them as a partisan affectation.

Which brings us to the current dispute between Trump and Fauci. Notwithstanding the recent spike in newly identified infections, which have reached record levels during the last few weeks, Trump insists we have "turned the corner." During his interview with the Post last Friday, Fauci strongly disagreed.

"We're in for a whole lot of hurt," Fauci said. "It's not a good situation. All the stars are aligned in the wrong place as you go into the fall and winter season, with people congregating at home indoors. You could not possibly be positioned more poorly."

That last part seems like hyperbole. The United States would be positioned more poorly, for instance, if the case fatality rate had not fallen dramatically since mid-May, partly because of changing patient demographics and partly because of improvements in treatment. But it is surely reasonable for Fauci to worry about the course of the epidemic as Americans spend more time indoors, and he is right that we are apt to see a further increase in daily deaths, although probably not nearly as big as the increase in cases, let alone as big as the huge surge that Biden has predicted.

Fauci not only contradicted Trump's excessive optimism. He made the mistake of contrasting the Biden campaign, which he said "is taking [COVID-19] seriously from a public health perspective," with the Trump administration, which he said is focused on "the economy and reopening the country."

The angry White House response to Fauci's comments noted the falling case fatality rate but was otherwise not exactly substantive. "It's unacceptable and breaking with all norms for Dr. Fauci, a senior member of the President's Coronavirus Task Force and someone who has praised President Trump's actions throughout this pandemic, to choose three days before an election to play politics," said White House spokesman Judd Deere. "As a member of the Task Force, Dr. Fauci has a duty to express concerns or push for a change in strategy, but he's not done that, instead choosing to criticize the President in the media and make his political leanings known by praising the President's opponent—exactly what the American people have come to expect from The Swamp."

In short, Deere is telling us that Fauci is a Swamp creature determined to prevent Trump's reelection, not a scientist giving his honest take on COVID-19 trends. If the White House thinks that take is wrong, it should be telling us why. Instead, the White House is telling Americans to accept the word of a desperate politician whose allegiance to the truth is tenuous even in the best of circumstances.

NEXT: D.C. Schools Suddenly Abandon Plans To Reopen After Teachers Union Objects

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  1. “but at least he is attempting to describe reality”

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                  1. I find it difficult not to agree with your viewpoint.

                    1. Well he does make a persuasive argument.

                    2. When he’s right he’s right.

                    3. It’s also more concise with better clarity.

                    4. He pretty much captured my reaction perfectly.

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                  3. Fauci-apologist is likely not a smart career move, I will grant you that. The logical contortions alone are daunting.

                    1. I quit working at shop rite and now I make $65-85 per/h. How? I’m working online! My work didn’t exactly make me happy so I decided to take a chance on asy something new after 4 years it was so hard to quit my day job but now, I couldn’t be happier So i try use.
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    2. Trump needs to stay out of Wisconsin Trump turds pack in like sardines all defiant with the masks just like Trump! Trumps filling our hospitals and his dumb ass supporters are helping DUMP TRUMP! Republicans against Trump…….VISIT HERE FULL DETAIL.

  2. *pops some corn*

    1. *pops some cornours a double*

      1. So he’s just getting started then.

  3. Because fauci has been a lying retard since the mid 80s and anyone that thinks he is a decent person should not have no connection to any decision making on any level, including what to have for dinner

    1. Yea pretty much this. A better headline would be ‘Inside the mind of someone who writes a an article questioning why Donald Trump is So Mad At Anthony Fauci’

    2. Ahh yes, let’s see your resume Rev. Arthur. Hell, let’s just compare it against Trump’s.

      What a fucking idiot you are.

      1. The stuff I make works. Fauci however played this game with aids. Create mass panic, demonize people and demand more funding.

      2. Jeff calling anyone a retard is pretty ironic.

      3. He didnt have schools disconnect water fountains in the 90s put of fear of aids, while also refusing to shut down bath houses. Already better than Fauci.

  4. “We’re in for a whole lot of hurt,” Fauci said.

    The angry White House response to Fauci’s comments noted the falling case fatality rate but was otherwise not exactly substantive.

    So, ignoring all the dead and dying people, Fauci’s just a scientist trying to describe the reality that Biden’s the better candidate.

    1. Fauci is a bureaucrat who thinks of his position and his organization first – that, rather than his abilities as a scientist is how he rose to the top of a government agency.
      If no one dies from COVID-19 in the next year, but the destruction of the economy leads to a million deaths, he will consider his job to be well done. That is, he does not want anyone to starve, but if his solutions to the pandemic lead to that outcome, it is not his problem. Listen to him – consequences to his policies outside the immediate actions are never discussed.

      1. This is the problem with the medical experts and those who demand that we exclusively listen to them. Their entire lives since their early 20s was predicated on preventing as many people as possible from getting sick regardless of the cost for doing so. Therefore, they do not even consider the other effects of lockdowns and social distancing demands. Just look at their criticism of the Great Barrington Declaration. Not once did they address the non-medical arguments made therein. They merely circled back to the medical arguments they’ve been making all along. Of course, we should also mention that they were wildly off on the actual mortality rate of the disease, but are still using that wrong assumption in their arguments.

        1. That’s a point I have tried to make to a lot of people. A physician’s job is very different from the government’s public health responsibilities (even if you have a much more expansive view of the proper role of government than I do). A physician should do what he can to save the patient. Government health policy can’t do that. Everything comes with tradeoffs. You have to balance some lives against others if you are going to play that game. If that is distasteful to you, stick to medical practice where you can rightly consider the life in front of you the most important thing. If you want to work on big picture stuff, get used to lots of people dying. That’s how life is.

          1. He is a theoretical physician not a practicing one. I have worked with these types in the past, they are removed from reality on the ground and have no concept of risk versus benefit. The thing is he has stated this more than once himself, that the president has to take into account multiple issues where as he is able to address just the one.
            At this point he knows he is out the door after November 4 so he is just sucking up to Biden in the hope he wins and give him another position.

  5. Nobody listens(At least where I live) because they can’t make up their mind. He said don’t wear masks, then wear masks? He was they one we were supposed to trust and got it wrong. At my job I’d be fired; so should he. You don’t see some broke dick with out work for the last few months telling you to stay home. Easy when you have money to pontificate. Those of us in the real world got to pay bills.

    1. what’s absolutely absurd about this train of thought, is that people want to pretend he knows nothing now, because they want to believe what he said when nobody knew anything…… as an argument, that makes absolutely no sense.

      1. Because cloth masks were invented in May 2020?

      2. people want to pretend he knows nothing now, because they want to believe what he said he pretended to have all the answers when nobody knew anything…

        ftdy

        1. you do realize, you are still deciding to go with the less informed opinion as your preferred version of reality….. don’t you? i know it can be hard for the stupid to keep track, when they get locked into insult instead of argue mode, but you are still saying that you are choosing to believe the less informed position.

      3. He’s been wildly wrong about the total mortality of every new disease that has come around since AIDS by at least one order of magnitude. He has risen to his current position not because of any particular expertise he has. He got there because of his skills with bureaucratic politics. That’s why I do not listen to him.

  6. And that reality is . . . ?

    Oh, let’s see: never in the history of a widespread respiratory outbreak/pandemic have we mandated such widespread and lengthy shut downs nor destroyed the world for something with such a high survival rate.

    So the reality is, we need to put on our big person pants, protect the truly vulnerable best we can, and deal with the fact that very very few people are doing to die from this. It will be tragic for the friends and loved ones of those who do. But that’s life. No one gets out of here alive.

    Trump certainly could have articulated this point much more succinctly and less Trump-ly. His instincts are correct, his delivery awful. But that doesn’t make Fauci right.

    1. here is the problem. Trump is a reflection of his base, and not a leader. things that should never have been political became political because of him.

      i think anyone here can agree that the government mandates and forced shutdowns were wrong. using the government as a club and trying to arbitrarily decide what was “essential” was never going to work. the problem arises when voluntary actions that people should be taken somehow get lumped in with those shutdowns as all part of the same wrong being committed against us. that masks can help reduce the transmission of a respiratory disease was once considered common sense….. somehow, that became a political question. same for how many people get sick when you hold large gatherings.

      but, then, that is where trump failed to lead. he didn’t look to the expertise of his doctors and scientists….. he sought to appeal to every wacky notion those nut-jobs in his base put out there…. and he actively spread that disinformation. he is a coward who will not correct stupid things his followers say, he repeats it. his whole beef with Fauci is that he undermines that message the nutjobs want to spread. Trump wants to appease the morons who think masks don’t work and want to pretend there is nothing to worry about. while we should denounce forced actions we should promote people voluntarily doing what they can. there is a real danger if we get to a point where the hospitals cannot keep up.

      1. Democrats made all things trump political, not trump. There were planned riots before inauguration. Do you blame girls skirts as well?

      2. but, then, that is where trump failed to lead. he didn’t look to the expertise of his doctors and scientists….

        You mean the same doctors and scientists who were arguing for lockdowns and mask mandates that you said in the previous paragraph were unnecessary? Do you think these guys suddenly “discovering,” after decades of research on the community spread of infectious disease which indicated otherwise, that a piece of cloth prevents viral spread shouldn’t have come under criticism?

        I’ll agree with you in one sense that Trump didn’t show leadership here. He should have tard-wrangled these guys into showing clinical proof, not lazy, fake-ass correlation = causation wishcasting, that masks regardless of their construction prevent viral spread. He should have led by example by getting off his fat ass and losing weight, and encouraging everyone to do the same. He should have told governors that stuffing nursing homes with infectious patients was going to result in federal manslaughter charges. And he should have told hospitals to differentiate between people who died OF the coof versus people that died WITH the coof.

        1. he didn’t just reject their proposed policies….. he rejected the facts. he rejected common sense. he rejected anything short of blind denial-ism. (much like the adoring retards he was seeking to please, who somehow think the effectiveness of masks was “discovered.” people have been wearing masks during pandemics for over a century, dipstick.)

          1. “people have been wearing masks during pandemics for over a century”

            And have never been shown to be effective against respiratory viruses. You are so full of crap its surprising you can even find a mask that can cover it.

            The mask mandate is nothing more then a ‘do something’ placebo for folks scared of an invisible threat. There is zero fact-based science that shows a benefit of cloth/surgical masks for airborne viruses.

      3. Imagine being so dumb you still think hospitals being overwhelmed is a worry.

  7. This is the inevitable result of turning health into a public concern.

    1. yep just like drugs I don’t give a shit if you take drugs but as soon as we started caring about that and tell people they couldn’t do drugs for their own health then there was no end to it except for babies we don’t care about babies abort them all

      1. We do care if drug addled moms are pregnant though. Then the baby matters.

  8. Fauci has been talking out of both sides of his mouth for months now. And why is he getting political? He past his sell by date.

    As for the masks. This is getting exhausting. There is no growing list of evidence. There are just a flurry of laughably flawed studies none of which over turn the massive body of evidence AGAINST MASKS.

    Read the latest two part study on this site that culls a bunch of studies showing masks suck dick.

    https://masklockdowndata.squarespace.com

    Sweden and Norway aren’t masked up. This stupidity has reached cult like idiocy and anyone who wears them denies science.

    Enough already. FORK OVER IRREFUTABLE PROOF they work or shut the fuck up and put an end to this imbecilic and pernicious act of faux-virtue and ignorance.

    1. Most of the studies conducted prior to this March, have shown that masks do very little to stop the transmission of respiratory viruses.

    2. I pretty much agree. Forget about the science of things, government has no business deciding for people whether or not they must wear or not wear something on their face. Full stop.

      The policy side of this epidemic is more about the proper role of government and less about the “science.”

      This stupidity has reached cult like idiocy and anyone who wears them denies science.
      I only wear masks when private property owners require them, because I respect property rights.

      1. I talk specifically about mandates.

        1. My point is that even if there were irrefutable proof that masks were 100% effective, that shouldn’t give government the ability to force me to wear one. We should be focusing on the liberty side of this issue, not getting dragged into the questions about the science.

          It’s the same argument about vaccines. The science there is pretty solidly in favor of vaccinations. Still doesn’t mean I should get a needle in my arm at the point of a government gun.

          1. My point is that even if there were irrefutable proof that masks were 100% effective, that shouldn’t give government the ability to force me to wear one.

            This is why everyone rightly hates libertarians.

            1. At least the people that hate liberty.

              1. Liberty is letting the Boomer Remover flourish instead of wearing a cheap mask for 10 days.

                1. No it’s forcing people to do what you want because you’re a cowering pussy.

                  1. Nothing says bravery like refusing to wear a perfect virus destroying mask for several days.

                    1. I heard it also makes one’s dick bigger.

                    2. It’s Leo’s hypothetical. Ask him if his “100% effective” mask will help your dick problem.

                2. 2/3rds of the deaths attributed to Covid were non-boomers.

                  Just sayin’.

                  1. 1) need the cite, sorry that sounds like bullshit

                    2)” attributed to”

                    1. It’s on the CDC website. You can look it up for yourself if you’re really interested.

                  2. Yeah, most are older. The oldest boomers are 75.

                    1. But what rhymes with silent generation?

                    2. Violent defenstration?

                    3. not bad

                    4. Sounds impraguetical…

                3. We’re on Day 117 of 30 for our local mask mandate.

                  Eat a dick with your 10 day shit.

          2. I understand where you’re coming from, but this came became politicized the minute Trump decided to suspend travel from China. Ever since, the Smart Set’s been manically moving the goalposts around in a desperate effort to increase social anxiety and uncertainty.

            1. I doubt Trump’s China travel suspension was the reason. This became political when it happened in an election year in which the majority of media wants the current President to be defeated.

              1. It became politicized because Trump was president.

                1. Replace Trump with GW Bush.

                  It still becomes political, no?

                  1. Replace Trump with Obama. Still political?

                  2. Yeah, probably. It’s not new, but it has been cranked up to unbelievable levels under Trump.

                2. It became political right as the impeachment was failing, Nancy Messonnier (Rod Rosenstein’s sister) started the whole ball rolling with the fear and panic by crying COVID wolf.

                  Those are amazing coincidences in both timing and relation.

                  But I’m sure, Nancy has the same kind of noble government work ethic and upstanding character as her brother. Wouldn’t ever think to weaponize her DC position against her brother’s political adversaries (apparently which includes large swaths of the country), out of petty spite.

                  Only the most shallow and callous federal employee would even consider that kind of nepotism and corruption, worth it for the year long, paid at home, vacation.

    3. The only time Fraudci has been right about anything was when he said there was no reason for people to be wearing masks. The medical establishment changed its position only to appease the political dictators such as Cuomo.

  9. Was it Fauci who blabbered some nonsense about making everybody wear goggles if he could?

    Some days it’s hard to tell reality from the Babylon Bee.

    1. Yeppers, Fauci and goggles.

      That ought to answer the question all by itself, never mind all his previous flips and flops and blatherings.

    2. Fauci’s biggest problem is that he constantly makes these comments about policy. That’s not his job. That shouldn’t be his job. Fauci should provide the scientific basis to inform policy, maybe. But he is not a policy-maker, nor should he be.

      1. It doesn’t help that the news media are treating him like some sage who’s every utterance needs to be followed to the letter. I’ve seen less ass-eating in porn shoots.

        1. A US government bureaucrat with a long distinguished career in the field of grant procurement is a perfect specimen to divide red team and blue team.

        2. Sure. I don’t see anyone in the mainstream really standing up and questioning whether government should have this power or not.

          While Trump’s instincts on this are on the right side, his rhetoric on it really isn’t pro-liberty. It’s more about him wanting to prop up the economy. While I like his position much more than the Democrats on this one, even Trump doesn’t seem to be promoting liberty for liberty’s sake. I could be wrong, but I’ve never heard him question whether government should have the power that he’s refusing to exercise in the first place.

          1. I think you are right. If Trump thought supporting a national lockdown would make him look good and wouldn’t tank the economy, he’d be all for it.

      2. Yeah, this is the big point, I think. I think Fauci gets a lot wrong, but who doesn’t?
        The problem is raising people like him to the position of “official experts” and then pretending that we should listen to them even when they are speaking outside of their realm of expertise. Fauci probably knows lots of things about viruses that I don’t know. That doesn’t make him an expert on whether or not any particular public policy is good or reasonable.
        Experts get things wrong all the time. We need to be constantly questioning these experts, and seeking out other experts who disagree with them, not blindly following the few supposed experts that our political office holders have decided to hitch their wagons to. That isn’t how you do science. The choice of experts to rely on is a political decision. Government appointed experts are the last people we should be listening to. Listen to as many independent experts as you can find, look at the data for yourself and make up your own mind.

        1. Independent experts have been harassed and threatened with losing their licenses and/or jobs so the rest of them keep quite out of fear

          1. There are plenty out there saying what they want to say still. But I’m sure many have been silenced by threats to their careers and reputations. That’s really the most disgusting thing here. Any discussion of whether all of this tyrannical bullshit is really a good idea or not has been shut down in major media and government. Really makes me sick.

    3. He also said that no one should ever shake hands ever again. In like, April.

    1. At this point I don’t see how anyone can claim that Sweden didn’t do the right thing with a straight face.

      1. The problem is that those who would say such a thing really believe it. They’re told Sweden did the very wrong thing, and that’s what they believe.

  10. Fire Fauci, defund the CDC and start over. If Fauci were to end up getting publicly executed for his participation, that would be a bonus.

  11. UK Flu and pneumonia deaths since 1990 compared to 2020 C19 deaths

    https://twitter.com/PrisonPlanet/status/1322511931073331206/photo/1

  12. https://twitter.com/ianmSC/status/1321597217082351617

    Remember when Covid-related myocarditis was such a huge threat that sports media wrote endless articles about how it made sports too dangerous to play this year?

    Who would have guessed that was wildly inaccurate?!

    Oh yeah, anyone paying attention.

    @RossDellenger
    Exclusive: Cardiologists are finding so few heart issues in athletes they are no longer recommending screenings for most COVID positives.

    How emerging data will impact protocols like B1G’s 21-day policy.

    Barry Alvarez: “It’s time to take a serious look”

  13. 1. Fauci’s been right, wrong, kind of right, sort of wrong, and makes me question if he’s ever had a license to practice medicine.

    2. He jumps in front of any camera that will have him, and nothing pisses Trump off more than that.

    1. yes this. At that level, staying on message is critical from an executive management perspective. Right or wrong, the administration needs to provide consistent messaging to the public.

      Fauci has shown that he is not responsible enough to work within a team and maintain the team’s message. He spouts different stuff day-in/day-out to whatever outlet wants to hear him speak. He should have been fired months ago, and the only reason he wasn’t was because the press made him into an anti-Trump darling such that he became a political hot-potato.

  14. I really never thought I’d live to see the day when Reason is basically saying that an unelected government official trying to dictate coercive policy should be deferred to because he’s a Top Man.

    1. Imagine what you’ll see tomorrow, Bill.

      Fauci needed to have been fired well before now. For the AIDS mismanagement, if nothing else.

      1. Gay orgies and BLM riots are the foundations of our democracy.

        1. Knowing history these days is a form of self-torture.

          1. yea, need that MiB zap thing so I can eat the bugs in the pod and watch MSNBC and hate Blormph

  15. What about liberty? No mention of it here. The public is tired of being pushed around by government jerks who care about numbers instead of people.

    Case numbers are not illness numbers. But the government public health jerks don’t care and want to put 10 million people out of work to optimize their spreadsheets.

    1. And yet, in El Paso they’ve got their 4th mobile morgue coming.

      Seems that some people care about HUMAN numbers. It’s a balance but pretending covid doesn’t exist or just writing off a large segment of the population makes you quite the asshole.

      Everyone complains about 3k dead on 9/11 and 4 American dead in Benghazi but miraculously 200-300k excess deaths this year doesn’t seem to move the needle.

      1. Yeah, because terrorism is morally equivalent to a world pandemic.

      2. You don’t seem that broken up about 655,000 dying from heart disease every year. Why are 230,000 in the last ten months of greater concern?

        Also, you left out that none of those mobile morgues have been put to use yet.

      3. No matter how many numbers you write down, I refuse to panic and destroy people’s lives and futures in yet another vain attempt to optimize someone’s spreadsheet.

      4. Do you think we should have imposed a full police state with random searches and interrogations after 911 to make sure no one can ever put together a terrorist plot ever again? If not, then shut the fuck up. If so, also shut the fuck up.

        How about the HUMAN numbers attached to the hundreds of millions of people whose lives have been severely disrupted and many of whose lives have been shortened by the lockdowns and forced business closures? That is a very real cost too. And it really kills people.

        1. “If not, then shut the fuck up. If so, also shut the fuck up.”

          *swoons*

      5. and like all the tent hospital they set up and never used how many of those will get never get used

      6. My health is not your problem.

      7. Dude, if you’re going to put every single death ever in terms of “9-11s,” we have 2.5 9-11s every single day in this country, all the time. 9-11 wasn’t tragic because 3,000 people died- in reality, that’s a rounding error when spread out even over a few weeks. It was because it was a deliberate act with the intent to kill and cause havoc, with the implicit threat of such attacks being carried out repeatedly. And it affected younger, working age people almost exclusively, regardless of health, etc. If you can’t see the difference between that and a population with an average age of ~80, with almost all of them having serious health issues, dying of a natural cause, I’m not sure what to say…

      8. El Paso is basically North Juarez, as the Mexican city abuts El Paso on the border and has double the population.

        But I am sure that you can blame this on Trump somehow.

      9. Imagine that…..a border town with resources that get overwhelmed by those who “visit” when they need medical care!

  16. “The president’s COVID-19 adviser is not always right, but at least he is attempting to describe reality.”

    Why bother reading the rest. Reality goes against Trump.

    1. Literally Hitler!

    2. TRUNALIMUNUMAPRZURE

  17. Fauci spends a lot of time talking but much of what he says seems like attention seeking rather than good information. Generally speaking you don’t normally throw your boss under the bus and then wonder why the boss is mad as you.

    Anyway we are talking about a virus that kills less than 0.3% of total infected people. This means we can go about our lives as normal and not spend one second longer talking about it.

  18. As long as you validate Trump you are a hero. Once you correct his tweets you become a vile enemy. That’s how it works. All praise Dear Leader from whence all goodness flows. Amen.

    1. You live in California and didn’t vote for Biden, but only so you can pretend you wouldn’t have if you lived in a contested state.

      How did I do?

      1. Thats said about a lot of the idiots here. Sarc, sqrsly, chipper.

    2. TRUNALIMUNUMAPRZURE

    3. Get out of sarcasmics lane.

    4. Yeah, close the bath houses. Never shake hands. Pay no attention to the lifelong bureaucrat . . .

      If he were in private practice, his license would have been revoked.

  19. There are too many unknowns about Covid for government at any level to have business ordering precautions at any level.

    Here are some facts that support my plan of immediate reopening.

    (1) The whole time this so-called pandemic has been going in western countries, case counts and especially death counts have been ridiculously wrong. State and local officials are eager to count any death as Covid to get more taxpayer funds, and to make mask and lockdown policies appear necessary.
    (2) Fauci himself owns a large stake in one of the vaccine makers, and stands to get rich if that company’s vaccines are made compulsory. This may be why FDA has given immunity from lawsuit to any vaccine producer (which itself makes any vaccine more risky).
    (3) There has never been a successful vaccine against a common cold, which Covid is.
    (4) Covid related viruses (examples: swine flu and SARS) always mutate over time, becoming less harmful. Anyone who catches it now is very unlikely to die.
    (5) The initial spikes in death rates were from senseless decisions by officials (such as Cuomo’s nursing home order) that were at least criminally negligent and maybe deliberate murder. The like can easily be prevented from happening again.
    (6) There are multiple studies showing masks worn by healthy people don’t help and can kill people with breathing difficulty.
    (7) There are also multiple studies now showing that the economic and other side effects of lockdowns and mask mandates kill more people than Covid. They certainly ruin more lives, which is why the risk-reward decision needs to be left to the individual. And of course (8) Big Tech has banned discussion of all these arguments — which proves to my satisfaction that they can’t answer them, or they wouldn’t feel the need to make people like me shut up.

  20. Wonder how many of those cases are even symptomatic? Hell, if you’re asymptomatic, that’s *good news*–it means you have a weak strain that’s not going to put you in the hospital and will provide some immunity afterwards. Stay at home for two weeks, rest up, and get back to work afterwards. The fact that flu numbers have gone through the floor with these “case increases” is shady as fuck, as well.

    I wonder how many people have had this over the last year and didn’t even realize it?

    1. Probably a lot if the numbers of positive tests are high enough to mask what would normally be reported as flu.

    2. It the antibody studies that have been conducted are correct, between 50% – 90% of actual cases.

  21. Shorter Sullum:

    “The election’s tomorrow people so orangemanbad! Tangerine Tyrant was mean to Fauci! He’s a Doctor! Vote cause TRUNALIMUNUMAPRZURE!”

  22. I was watching college football this past Saturday (don’t remember which game) where there were a limited number of spectators allowed. The game announcers made a point of recognizing that fact, as safety was so obviously important.

    Although the stadium was only partially filled, the spectators were being allowed- or, at least, were not being prohibited- from sitting together in groups.

    So tell me… if masks work, why was it necessary to limit attendance?

    1. The football instructions I’ve seen have people sitting with family, housemates, etc.

    2. The masks most people wear say “not for medical use” on the packaging.

      I never wear a masks in businesses.

  23. Sadly, the main problem that Trump has is that Fauci is more believable than he is to most of the population. If Trump fires Fauci he’s an idiot.

  24. How did the Branch COVIDians get Reason?

  25. Why is the President angry that one of his advisors explicitly stated that the president’s opponent should be elected?

    Hmmm….

  26. Because he’s full of shit.

  27. Why is Jacob Sullum still hanging on to the “official” numbers for fatalities when anyone who has been paying any attention understands the fact that the number is overstated by at least a factor of 100. When terminal cancer patients and gunshot deaths are coded as “covid” for the sake of collecting big bonuses from the feds, you know we’re all being fed bullshit. Also, have you noticed that no one is dying from the flu anymore? Which, in a typical year, accounts for 40-60000+ fatalities. Did the other coronavirus suddenly disappear?

    1. Sullum is a lying hack like Gillespie, welch, KMW, Boehm, Britches, Shika….

      Look at the staff dump one last effort to help the Democrats. Its fucking pathetic.

      It will be glorious when Trump wins reelection and the voter numbers make it clear the democrat party is fracturing into factions and never nationally competitive again.

    2. I don’t agree that the fatality numbers are overstated, as the excess death numbers point to around 200k additional fatalities this year, due to covid/lockdowns.
      I think its a flawed premise to argue around.

      But, I do think that 2-3 years from now, we’ll see the excess death numbers drop well below average and balance out this years spike to a great degree. Covid has killed a lot of people who were on death’s door and the vast majority of those deaths would have likely happened in the next few years regardless of the pandemic. Averaging out the excess death count from 2019-2024 will provide clear answers, but we’ll have to wait and see.

      1. So, if somebody dies from, lets say, cancer and they knew they were about to die from cancer, yet they were coded as “covid” – even though the tests they use are unreliable, that doesn’t constitute overstating the numbers? Or a gunshot?

        My favorite FB post early on in this scam was “Man eaten by shark. DIes of COVID”.

  28. Reality? How about the fact that Remdesivir doesn’t work. Fauci? Silence.

    Reality? The number of life years lost due to the shutdown far exceeds the number lost to Covid. Fauci? Silence.

    No one at Reason holds Trump in greater contempt that I do, but it does not justify defending a lifer bureaucrat who’s protecting his turf.

    1. You are correct. Poverty from the shutdown will kill 130 million people by starvation. The Marxist lockdowns destroyed $4 trillion in world GDP. Millions will die as a result.

  29. Georgia has no mask requirements and we never locked down. Businesses and schools are open. We dont wear masks and dont social distance.

    7,891 deaths while infected in 8months.

    Fauci is an idiot bureaucrat who cant admit when everything ill be fine for America.

  30. Fautchee is the guy who bought in t the H1Ni rage based on the num
    bers put forth by that bary perfesser in England who predicted a couple illion dead of that version of swine flu. He was only off by a factor of a hundred…. big deal. What’s a few Zeroes amongst upportunistic money grubbing profiteers? Near universal panic set in, we all need to DO SUMFIN
    Then there was AIDS…. again, the predictions were off by a factor of about an hundred. Same thing. We’re gonna haffta bury millions……
    Then, more recently there was the big freakout over Ebola maybe five years ago… I do remember the kinyun was still masquerading as “presidon’t”. New outbreak in Africa, millions gonna die, again, if we doan DOOOOO sumpin. the kinyun’s response? He brought some known infected patients here for treatment. super high security protocols, right? No danger at all…. thankfully the folks at that hospital in Texas did their bit well. No new cases.,

    But what I wanna know is this: SINCE this WuFlu has a demonstrated and consistent Infection Fatality Rate of about one tenth of one percent (0.01%)( the proportion of death amongst those infected.. that is, positive test with signficant symptoms, plur al, ) and when those over 75 years old or so are elimintatd from the totals, the reduced IFR drops to about .024%. These mnumbers are very close to IFR of seasonal flu, and/or the common cold.
    and SINCE those numbers are close to the common cold and to seasonal flu deaths,
    and SINCE we’ve never even thought to wear masks in pubilc even when an individual is known to be sick, and SINCE there are known cheap effetive cures that have been tested over decades for viral infections,
    WHY is there any issue with the Chief Executive declaring he’s gonna get with this Fautchee guy and tell him a well deserved YOU”RE FIRED”. Ad I hope he gets very specific as to WHY……

  31. Fauci is a partisan Democrat, an agent of the Clinton campaign.

    He refused to quarantine the early AIDS and loosed a $trillion epidemic that killed 20 million.

    Now, he wants to restrict normal, well people to destroy the achievement of President Trump, and to swing the election results.

    He is a well known hack. He is politically correct, and fits in well with Washington DC culture.

  32. “Leaving aside the fact that the worst-case scenario was never realistic[…]”

    It doesn’t matter whether it was realistic. This is the scale chosen by the media and Top Men™️, therefore it should be the scale by which T is judged.

    Governors used that very number to justify their lockdowns. They use outlandish numbers every day to continue justifying mask mandates and economic destruction.

    You don’t get to pick and choose what standard to follow depending on the actor.

  33. Amazing how people here are lining up to buy more of Trump’s crap about a disease over an ACTUAL DOCTOR.

    1. Doctors kill more people every year than Covid. Medical mistakes are the third leading cause of death in the US. And Covid will eventually burn out. Idiot doctors will go on killing.

      https://www.cnbc.com/2018/02/22/medical-errors-third-leading-cause-of-death-in-america.html

    2. Perhaps because the issue is not strictly a medical one. But lefty shits like you hoping to find the socialist dream in every crisis keep hoping.

  34. Fauci has been all over the place. It’s nt a problem, it is a problem. No Masks, Masks, I don’t need one when in public, But Masks. Lockdwon everything, but have meaningless sexual hookups on Tinder if you can dandle the risk. Can’t go out to eat mind you, but French Kissing and bodily fluid exchange is A OK. FAUCHI IS AN IDIOT!!!!! I hope Trump fires him immediately after this election (Win or lose)

  35. “That last part seems like hyperbole.”

    Not scaremongering?
    Not Bullshit?
    Not Biden talking points?

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