Coronavirus

A New York Times Reporter Claims Americans Distrust the Government's COVID-19 Advice Because They Don't Understand How Science Works

If so, public health officials have compounded the problem with disingenuous arguments, dubious policy shifts, and misleading statements.

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Many Americans do not have much faith in the government's COVID-19 advice, which has changed repeatedly during the pandemic, often for questionable reasons. It has not helped that local, state, and federal public health officials have defended their positions with disingenuous arguments or misrepresented the scientific evidence.

A survey conducted last spring by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and Harvard's T.H. Chan School of Public Health found that just 52 percent of Americans had "a great deal" or "quite a lot" of trust in recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Other public health authorities had even lower ratings: 44 percent for local health departments, 41 percent for state health departments, 40 percent for the U.S. surgeon general, 37 percent for the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and 33 percent for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, for example.

New York Times health and science reporter

Is it really so surprising, then, that Americans feel bewildered and bamboozled, even enraged, by rapidly changing rules that have profound implications for their lives?"

There is some truth to this. Emerging evidence concerning the especially contagious delta variant and the possibility that vaccine effectiveness wanes over time, for example, has given rise to lively debates about the merits of new masking guidelines and booster shots. Evidence that face masks play an important role in reducing virus transmission, which was pretty meager early in the pandemic, has been reinforced by more recent studies, although it is still not strong enough to persuade many skeptics, including some who are familiar with the scientific literature.

But Mandavilli completely overlooks other factors that help explain why so many Americans are disinclined to accept the government's guidance as gospel. Public health advice is not simply a function of science. It incorporates cost-benefit analyses and value judgments on which well-informed people of good faith can honestly differ. Whether "universal masking" in schools makes sense, for instance, depends not only on the uncertain evidence that it prevents outbreaks but on the weight one assigns to the burdens that policy imposes. It also depends on what level of risk is deemed tolerable.

In this case and others, it often seems that public health agencies are working backward, settling on a policy and then searching for evidence to back it up. Anyone who delves into the studies that the CDC cites to justify its recommendation that everyone 2 or older wear face masks in schools and other public settings, regardless of their vaccination status, can see that science is just one element of the agency's deliberative process.

The CDC's initial dismissal of general mask wearing as a precaution against COVID-19 likewise was clearly influenced by nonscientific considerations—in particular, the concern that the practice would aggravate a shortage of masks for health care workers. The agency's reversal of that position in April 2020, although supposedly justified by evolving evidence, officially was driven mainly by concerns about asymptomatic transmission, a danger that had been recognized for months. And while the CDC's double reversal of its mask advice to vaccinated Americans was based on concerns about a new development—the proliferation of the delta variant, coupled with evidence that vaccines are less effective at preventing infection by it—there was legitimate disagreement about the merits of both shifts.

As far as Mandavilli is concerned, the CDC has simply been following the science all along, a point that Americans are too ignorant to recognize. "One jarring backtrack was the mask guidance by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention," she writes. "The agency said in May that vaccinated people could drop their masks, advice that helped set the stage for a national reopening. Officials did not emphasize, or at least not enough, that the masks could be needed again. Now, with a new surge in infections, they are." Mandavilli thus takes as a given the very point that critics of the CDC's latest guidance contest.

State policy likewise has been driven by scientifically questionable reasoning. After California banned outdoor restaurant dining in late 2020, the state's health secretary admitted the policy was not based on evidence that the newly prohibited activity posed a significant risk of virus transmission. The real aim, he said, was to discourage Californians from leaving home.

Around the same time, San Mateo County Health Officer Scott Morrow, an early advocate of lockdowns in the San Francisco Bay Area, complained that there was little rhyme or reason to the new restrictions imposed by Gov. Gavin Newsom, which ultimately delivered no perceptible public health benefit. "I am aware of no data that some of the business activities on which even greater restrictions are being put into place with this new order are the major drivers of transmission," Morrow said. "I'm not sure we know what we're doing."

Morrow, a physician with a public health degree who has been San Mateo County's health officer since 1992, presumably cannot be accused of misunderstanding how science works. His complaint was that California's policies were not justified by the evidence.

The distrust provoked by disingenuous arguments and empirically shaky policies has been compounded by official statements with no basis in fact. Early in the pandemic, then–Surgeon General Jerome Adams flatly asserted that face masks "are NOT effective in preventing [the] general public from catching #Coronavirus." After the CDC changed its advice on masks, public health officials erred in the opposite direction. Last fall, in his zeal to promote face masks as "the most important, powerful public health tool we have," then–CDC Director Robert Redfield claimed they offered more effective protection than vaccines would. The current CDC director, Rochelle Walensky, has grossly exaggerated the risk of outdoor transmission and the danger posed by breakthrough infections, blatantly mischaracterizing the scientific evidence.

Americans should be able to rely on public health officials for accurate summaries of COVID-19 research. Episodes like these suggest they can't, which is at least as big a problem as the public's lack of appreciation for scientific uncertainty.

Mandavilli likewise blames the public rather than the government for the skepticism inspired by the FDA's delay in fully approving COVID-19 vaccines. Today the FDA finally gave full approval to Pfizer's two-dose COVID-19 vaccine, eight months after it granted an emergency use authorization. "Some holdouts found it suspicious that the vaccine was not formally approved yet somehow widely dispensed," Mandavilli  writes. "For them, 'emergency authorization' has never seemed quite enough."

But surely it was reasonable to wonder why the FDA—despite expressing confidence in the safety and efficacy of vaccines and allowing millions of injections, which generated reams of data to supplement the evidence from clinical trials—waited so long to address the concern that Mandavilli seems to view as frivolous. While full approval may not persuade committed anti-vaxxers, it could have made a decisive, potentially lifesaving difference for many waverers. If the delay led to avoidable COVID-19 deaths, the FDA bears some responsibility for that outcome.

Mandavilli does fault "health officials" for failing to take "full advantage" of their ability to counteract COVID-19 "misinformation," which she says offered "a powerful opportunity to fill in the knowledge gaps for many Americans." But while rebutting misinformation certainly is preferable to suppressing it through government-encouraged censorship, there is always a danger that health officials themselves will err, evincing unjustified confidence and mistaking their own opinions for incontrovertible fact.

Mandavilli, for example, thinks it's a fact that universal masking is "needed," which implies that people who disagree are disseminating misinformation. That attitude is hardly consistent with the epistemological modesty that seems appropriate in light of the scientific uncertainty she emphasizes.

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  1. “Science” is judged solely on the political party promoting it.

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    2. That’s why we have ‘Science Department’, to order us what to do.

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    3. Says the guy advocating masks even for those who are not infected and asymptomatic under the guise of “courtesy.”

      1. When they were counting deaths instead of cases, and old people were scared, yeah. I advocated for putting on a mask to ease their minds and not be a jerk. I never said anyone should be forced. What’s wrong with that?

        1. Actually, you lying fuck hole, what you said was that anyone who refused to wear an utterly worthless face diaper was a selfish asshole who was endangering people’s lives and deserved to be ostracized, beaten, and, if still failing to comply, be attacked by government agents. That’s a pretty fucking far cry from “When they were counting deaths instead of cases, and old people were scared, yeah. I advocated for putting on a mask to ease their minds” It’s actually promising that you have enough self awareness to be ashamed of your own idiocy and try to walk it back like this though. Surprising, since you typically stick your mindless keyboard vomit to the death.

          1. Yes, when stupid and dishonest people were saying the masks are pointless because they don’t work to protect wearers from the virus, I clarified that the purpose of the masks was to protect others from wearer.
            But I never once said it should be forced.
            That’s just you making stuff up.

            1. When people made valid comments, this asshole whined.

              1. When have you ever made a valid comment? You’ve got “Go kill yourself” on cut’n’paste, and that’s the most intelligent thing you’ve got to offer.

    4. yes she is promoting political party.

    5. I used to love Reason, back when it was a libertarian website. Why do people mistrust the government? Because they aren’t idiots – anyone who trusts the government is an idiot who is ignorant of history & devoid of commonsense. Why would anyone believe that government officials are more knowledgeable or honest than anyone else? Why would anyone believe that government officials are less likely to be motivated by greed, lust or power than anyone else? Please – the liberal fantasies about government officials and their motives are just that, fantasies.

      The fact that you idiots at Reason want to pretend masks might work is just infuriating. Few scientific issues have been more definitively resolved than the proposition that a mask cannot stop the spread of COVID. Basically, you’re trying to stop mosquitos w/ a chain link fence. And all of the real science says it (the pro-mask studies are obviously & ludicrously flawed, relying on nonsense like mannequins, rather than people). But Reason wants to be “respectable” so its writers send their kids to government schools in NYC & DC (the worst of the worst government schools) and churn out crap about masks.

      I really hope Reason folds – it’s giving libertarians as bad name.

  2. “To the extent that government messaging can be blamed for the lack of public trust, Mandavilli argues, it is because officials have failed to clearly explain that COVID-19 science is constantly evolving, justifying changes –”

    Far more likely is that the state does not want to admit it is / was wrong which can also cause lack of public trust.

    1. Far more likely is that the state does not want to admit it is / was wrong which can also cause lack of public trust.

      I think that is a big part of it. If the CDC/WHO would say “Ok, we’ve got some new data in and what we said earlier is wrong.” it would certainly help things.

      1. Anthony Fauci arguing against an earlier manifestation of himself is an argument against an earlier manifestation of science.

      2. It wouldn’t help at all in instances where there was uncertainty and the health “experts” pretended there was none. Like the vaccines are safe (we still don’t know that for sure), the virus didn’t come from a lab, etc. These are flat out fabrications that destroy credibility.

        1. We know that as well as we know that anything is safe.

          1. 45,000 adverse events and nearly 10,000 deaths thus far. More adverse events and deaths than all other vaccines combined since 1990. And the safety studies will not be completed until the first or second quarter of 2023. There’s a reason every other vaccine in existence has been studied for 5-10 years before being rolled out widely to the population, let alone made mandatory. Don’t presume that everyone else’s knowledge or analytical abilities are as piss fucking poor as yours are, you mindless sack of shit.

            1. 45,000 adverse events and nearly 10,000 deaths thus far. More adverse events and deaths than all other vaccines combined since 1990.

              The VAERS database suffers greatly from ‘Post Hoc Ergo Propter Hoc’. There have been 45,000 adverse events and 10,000 deaths that were cotemporaneous with the vaccinations, but the causal links have not been established in virtually any of those instances.

    2. Why is this an issue? Those who choose not to be vaccinated, only pose a risk to the unvaccinated, and therefore are the only ones at risk of contracting Covid.

      If people were to consider the unvaccinated, like obese people, then you might see a change.

      1. They are still hung up on ‘my mask protects you and your mask protects me’, even though it’s 100% proven fact the shot doesn’t stop you from getting or spreading the virus.

        Your shot doesn’t protect you, my shot doesn’t protect you.

        1. Agree. I got vaccinated and I’m done. If any adult doesn’t want the vaccine the is fine with me. Here in New England most adults got vaccinated and it seems that has ended the pandemic. We are pretty much back to normal.

        2. even though it’s 100% proven fact the shot doesn’t stop you from getting or spreading the virus

          To be fair, no vaccine is 100% effective. But it’s pretty well established that COVID vaccinated people are less likely to get sick, less likely to die, and less likely to transmit, even if those chances are not zero.

      2. ” only pose a risk to the unvaccinated,”
        False, immunity is not a binary switch. Against Delta the vaccine is only 82% effective.

        “like obese people”
        There is no proof that obesity along predisposes more likely contagion or more serious consequences

        1. There is no proof that obesity along predisposes more likely contagion or more serious consequences

          I already linked you to a half dozen sources that conclusively proved this you stupid fucking prick. Here, let me do it again just so that I can rub your nose in it like a dog that shit on the rug the next 50 times you drag out this lie:

          Study: Severe COVID, higher viral loads, immune response linked to obesity

                  1. Now, want to tell me that the CDC you think we all ought to worship is actually wrong about obesity you lardass piece of shit, or do you want to shut that gaping cocksucker?

    3. “Mandavilli argues, it is because officials have failed to clearly explain that COVID-19 science is constantly evolving,”

      This is completely missing the point. If the Science is evolving so much, then the government shouldn’t merely message differently, it should ACT differently. Massive, state-wide mandates are being enacted based on this “evolving science”. We have already seen that the government’s decisions to gut shot our economy has done exactly zero to reduce the spread. So when they tell us that we need to Mask up, Get the jab, get the jab and mask up, get the jab and mask up and get another jab, people are starting to get the picture that the government isn’t as competent as it claims to be. It isn’t just about the safety of the vaccine, it is that people have stopped believing that the government is doing anything in their better interests.

      1. 42% effective, but share prices way up!

        https://twitter.com/TerryMcAuliffe/status/1429843066492526595?t=E6uYQ32fKA8ij8V7dHdIoA&s=19

        BREAKING: Following the full FDA approval of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine this morning, I’m calling on EVERY Virginia employer to require all eligible employees to be vaccinated. We need every eligible Virginian to get vaccinated to beat this virus. Together, we’ll get it done.

        1. To be safe, a certain fraction of the population should remain unvaccinated. Those should probably be very young children and those who have recovered from COVID. By the way the most reliable chart from the CDC is the “excess deaths from all causes”. Deaths have held at the high end of “expected” since March 2021. Don’t put all your eggs in one basket. That’s science.

          1. Children under 12 have no choice but to remain unvaccinated.
            Also if you look at excess deaths world wide you will see a very uneven picture. In some countries the number of deaths in 2020 decreased with respect to 2019

      2. Mandavilli seems to have set herself the task of defending the governments at every turn. But we all have seen the the “rady, shot, aim” approach and disseminating half-truths has undermined public confidence while exacting a very high cost. The past and present Administrations didn’t have the nerve to be brutally honest and transparent with the public.

  3. It would not do to forget that the politicians and bureaucrats have their own agendas. Many mayors and governors enjoy being able to rule by decree without the bother of consulting legislators. And many private citizens really enjoy the buzz from playing self-righteous virtue signals. In short, it isn’t just scientists who are demanding our attention.

  4. New York Times: “Hey, America, you’re fucking stupid!”

    Excellent endorsement of union-dominated public education!

    1. The Democrats and their fellow travelers at the NYT are fine with Americans being scientifically ignorant.

      It’s the disobedience they have a problem with.

    2. My thoughts, exactly.

  5. I distrust the NYT because they don’t know how journalism works.

    1. Nonsense. They have fostered some of the worlds greatest reporters from Judith Miller to Walter Duranty.

      1. Sarcasm detector on full.

      2. Don’t leave out Jayson Blair in the discussion. He’s much more relevant to the operation of today’s Times as well as the government agencies they cover. Just look at the COVID reporting and pronouncements for evidence of their fact free ways.

        1. And, of course, the 1619 project.

          1. Remember when the New York Times argued black people should be kept in zoos.

            https://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/jun/03/the-man-who-was-caged-in-a-zoo

            1. Remember when the New York Times argued black people should be kept in zoos.

              Their racism is – only slightly – more subtle these days.

    2. I wouldn’t use the NYT to wrap dead fish in.
      Maybe good for lining the cat litter box.

      1. Don’t use NYT for fish, they waste a lot of ink and it rubs off.

    3. Jayson Blair disagrees.

  6. I wonder what Apoorva Mandavilli’s position would be on scientific “misinformation”, like the kind of shit some random patent clerk might write a letter to the editor about…

    1. I should have read the whole article first:

      Mandavilli does fault “health officials” for failing to take “full advantage” of their ability to counteract COVID-19 “misinformation,” which she says offered “a powerful opportunity to fill in the knowledge gaps for many Americans.”

      Fuck off, Mandavilli, your “the science is settled” ass can go on the trash heap with the rest of the media’s “science writers”.

      1. The Science is settled, but also evolving. That’s why we need Experts – so we know which Science is settled at the moment and which Science has evolved and is newly settled now.

        1. The Science is always settling, evolving and then re-settling. Only the high priests have the insight to discern where The Science has settled on any given day.

        2. My favorite excerpt from The Book of Jeff.

        3. But that won’t stop us (the government) from making life-changing, nearly permanent changes based on that evolving science.

        4. My rebuttal when people say that the science is settled, “Cool. We can stop funding it – given that we know everything. “

        5. “Science is settled, but also evolving.”
          That means that it is NOT settled.

      2. It’s not science if you’re not allowed to question it. It’s a belief system, a religion, a cult, but NOT science.

          1. What about the scientology?

            1. It strikes me that employers, bars, venues, etc requiring vaccination for employment/admittance is basically mass date rape…

  7. Added to the reasons why people maybe are vax-hesitant: Our leaders who are briefed in more detail then the avg American continued to live their lives without restrictions. Kind of makes Americans think that maybe all these health measures are just security theater.

    1. The staff at Obama’s birthday party acted as a covid ‘buffer’ between the guests.

      1. Being a member of the globetrotting international elite means not having to live with the same rules as the peasants.

        https://twitter.com/ggreenwald/status/1429478618548342785?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1429478618548342785%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.battleswarmblog.com%2F%3Fp%3D48965

        Glenn Greenwald @ggreenwald
        Aug 22
        All the servants fully masked.
        The almost-entirely old, white, rich crowd of DCCC donors free to go maskless as they’re served.

        Kenneth P. Vogel @kenvogel
        Aug 22
        This appears to be a video of @SpeakerPelosi talking to donors at the @dccc retreat this weekend in Napa.

        I’m sure chemjeff and White Mike have a ton of reasons why it’s okay for Pelosi and her billionaire Democrat pals not to follow their own rhetoric.

        1. It wasn’t like Pelosi was at a public place such as a hair salon. Cut her some slack.

        2. Yeah but did you hear about what Rand Paul’s wife did?

  8. This is not hard. Americans understand all too well what is happening here. They are watching government and media follow the science….political science.

    They sure in shit are not following biological or statistical science very well.

  9. But Mandavilli completely overlooks other factors that help explain why so many Americans are disinclined to accept the government’s guidance as gospel.

    I would suggest that one of the factors is that we have New York Times reporters claiming to be experts on whatever subject they’re blathering about when we all know they’re subliterate whores incapable of finding their own asses with both hands and a flashlight. Nothing infuriates people more than being condescended to by their inferiors and nobody’s more inferior than a reporter.

    1. “Briefly stated, the Gell-Mann Amnesia effect is as follows. You open the newspaper to an article on some subject you know well. In Murray’s case, physics. In mine, show business. You read the article and see the journalist has absolutely no understanding of either the facts or the issues. Often, the article is so wrong it actually presents the story backward—reversing cause and effect. I call these the “wet streets cause rain” stories. Paper’s full of them.
      In any case, you read with exasperation or amusement the multiple errors in a story, and then turn the page to national or international affairs, and read as if the rest of the newspaper was somehow more accurate about Palestine than the baloney you just read. You turn the page, and forget what you know.”

  10. People began seeing it in earnest with public health officials’ special dispensation from strict distancing/lockdown dictates for George Floyd protests.

    1. What’re French restaurants, chopped foie gras?

      1. Was Whitmer also at a French restaurant or did she slum it and get Mexican?

        1. No matter where she is, she’s slumming it. As long as she stays in Lansing and doesn’t show up North, that’s fine with me.
          from a Michigander.

          1. I read an amusing story about Gretchen Whitmer recently. It ended with her receiving a special moniker, “Stretchin’ Gretchen”.

            *Barf*

    2. Fauci: “Attending church is dangerous and should not be done.”

      Churchgoers: “What about all of those ‘peaceful protests taking place right now in the summer of 2020?”

      Fauci: “I can’t really speak to that.”

      1. Now they’ll tell you nothing happened at all.

        1. Or deny that the experts justified and defended the riots while condemning you seeing grandma on her deathbed.

  11. New York Times health and science reporter Apoorva Mandavilli thinks she has identified the problem: Americans do not understand how the scientific process works.

    A study done at MIT showed that a substantial portion of public-health skepticism was highly informed, scientifically literate, and sophisticated in the use of data. Skeptics used the same data sets as those with the orthodox views on public health. From a writeup of the study:

    Combining computational and anthropological insights led the researchers to a more nuanced understanding of data literacy. Lee says their study reveals that, compared to public health orthodoxy, “antimaskers see the pandemic differently, using data that is quite similar. I still think data analysis is important. But it’s certainly not the salve that I thought it was in terms of convincing people who believe that the scientific establishment is not trustworthy.” Lee says their findings point to “a larger rift in how we think about science and expertise in the U.S.” That same rift runs through issues like climate change and vaccination, where similar dynamics often play out in social media discussions.

    1. This study doesn’t say they’re more scientifically literate. It says they’re “data literate” in a way that the authors hadn’t realized. Basically, they’re better at finding data and then presenting data visualizations that they can use to bolster their position.

      Subtle difference, but you’re picking and choosing on this one.

      That said, your point that people with differing opinions from this Time author aren’t bumpkins and yokels is well taken.

      Once you get away from 50 centers, there are a lot of people who are skeptical and more than capable of seeing shoddy science, like not publishing before you make a public health order (or at all), and calling it out.

      1. There’s no more/less here. The Timeswoman thinks that Americans are distrustful because they’re not scientifically literate. This study indicates that they’re distrustful despite whatever literacy they have, which means the distrust must be driven by factors beyond mere ignorance.

    2. …and those morons at MIT were somewhat taken aback by the observation that the “skeptics” view science as a process instead of an institution. This is revealing in that is shows that the MIT folks see it as an institution. There are institutions in science but the utility of the field is in the process.

      1. “those morons at MIT were somewhat taken aback ”
        why morons? Could you have dug out the information? No.
        Were they honest about what they found? It seems so.
        I’d trust them far more than you, who only is able to insult, or a NYT reporter.

        1. That you threw in the Times reporter there outs you as a partisan.

          1. hmm … just looking at this and it struck me that you might have said that you trust them more than EITHER ‘you…or a NYT reporter’.
            I read it as you trusting them AND the times reporter more.
            My mistake.

    3. This is why WIkipedia now prefers secondary sources to primary sources. Can’t have the masses doing their own analysis of data.

      1. Really? Didn’t notice this. Must keep my eyes open.

        I know they have rejected edits made by the person the page is about. Because it isn’t a valid reference.

        1. Biden had somehow edited his page with: hdsthdbkshgqipvz.

          1. No proof he said it. Lol.

  12. Science journalist – a group which pretty much universally doesn’t understand the science they write about – complains that the public doesn’t understand the science. Oh the irony.

    “Evidence that face masks play an important role in reducing virus transmission, which was pretty meager early in the pandemic, has been reinforced by more recent studies…”

    Weasel words. Which studies? Much less why should we find them persuasive. Many of the studies published during the pandemic are statistically and scientifically flawed in ways fatal to their conclusions. (I won’t say all, i haven’t read all of them. But I haven’t seen a single one that survives the laugh test).

    And meager early in the pandemic? Try non-existent. Literature consensus in January 2020 was that masks had no effect on respiratory virus transmission.

    1. BTW, the linked article is not a study, but a literature review. And it immediately starts by basically dismissing all the RCT mask studies because they weren’t done during a pandemic. I am not impressed.

      1. Yeah, but he’s got a link, and that little underline means your sentence is backed by indisputable facts.

    2. But if we put two cloth masks around a tube in a laboratory tied down with rubber bands, we some some reduction in the transmission of test particulate data.

  13. Maybe too much gaslighting from idiots like can be found at the NYT have done this to themselves. I mean, when the experts can’t be trusted to tell the truth, it’s not the public’s fault for not believing them anymore. And more importantly, when the media instead of calling out BS, rather pick a political team’s BS to constantly elevate, there will never be trust again.

    1. Don’t forget, the NYT was nothing more than an echo chamber for the Chaney/Bush war/invasion of Iraq and Afghanistan.

      1. Not sure the purpose of you bringing this up but yeah, they are gaslighters of the highest order.

      2. because Biden led the charge for (D)

      3. Be fair, that had full support of all but the leftmost fringe of reporting at the time as well as the entirety if congress. There was a lot more than groupthink at the Times going on for that one. On the other hand it does show they were always an organ of the State.

        1. The Iraq War was a fully bi-partisan deal. Check out the House and Senate roll calls for the votes on the Iraq War. Pretty much every prominent Democrat voted in favor of the actions, including Hillary Clinton, John Kerry, Harry Reid, and Joe Biden.

          In the House, 82 (39.2%) of 209 Democratic Representatives voted for the resolution.

          Indeed, in the Senate Democrats could have stymied the whole thing if they had not gone over to the other side on the vote. It passed 77-23, but 29 (58%) of 50 Democratic senators voted for the resolution. If Democrats had voted as a bloc against the war, it would not have passed (i.e., resolution fails 48-52).

          Senate Democrats voting for the resolution were:

          Sens. Baucus (D-MT), Bayh (D-IN), Biden (D-DE), Breaux (D-LA), Cantwell (D-WA), Carnahan (D-MO), Carper (D-DE), Cleland (D-GA), Clinton (D-NY), Daschle (D-SD), Dodd (D-CT), Dorgan (D-ND), Edwards (D-NC), Feinstein (D-CA), Harkin (D-IA), Hollings (D-SC), Johnson (D-SD), Kerry (D-MA), Kohl (D-WI), Landrieu (D-LA), Lieberman (D-CT), Lincoln (D-AR), Miller (D-GA), Nelson (D-FL), Nelson (D-NE), Reid (D-NV), Rockefeller (D-WV), Schumer (D-NY), and Torricelli (D-NJ).

    2. The emperor has no mask.

  14. A leftie would like you to know their religion requires obeisance to the word and the law, meaning science can never be wrong.

  15. I’ve heard nonsense like Mandavilli’s for over a year now. And it’s no less utter tripe. If altered rules were a function of evolving science, you’d expect to see random errors identified post rule and a random walk with respect to the rules themselves. Instead, you see both the errors and the rules consistently reveal the rules favor the interests of the authorities. Mass public gatherings were a mortal danger. Until Black Lives Matter decided to protest (and riot in some cases). Then, meh. But, once they’d petered out, public gatherings resumed being a mortal danger (unless it was Obama’s birthday or Pelosi’s fundraiser). What was the new science that urged those changes? Or, hell, even the evolution of “two weeks to flatten the curve” into “stay masked and locked down forever”? What was the science of any of that? I pretty clearly recall hearing absolutely no science. Just changing arguments. Cuomo sticking COVID patients in nursing homes was no big deal. Until after the election and progressives had their eye on his governorship. The only new science in that one was new political science. The list can easily go on and on and on. Politicians, progressives and their public health cronies have used the virus to push their preferred policy mixes.

    1. As I said in a thread last week, “two weeks to flatten the curve” should be screamed into the faces of everyone at the NYT for 12 hours a day by R. Lee Ermey.

      1. “Our 6 cases will soon be going to zero.” – Misinformationist in Chief / King of Bankruptcies

        1. When you try to do a “but Trump!” 8 months after he left office and can’t even get the 2 year old quote right.

      2. As I said in a thread last week, “two weeks to flatten the curve” should be screamed into the faces of everyone at the NYT for 12 hours a day by R. Lee Ermey.

        The Gunny hasn’t done any screaming for over 3 years now…at least not in an Earthly manner.

    2. Politicians, progressives and their public health cronies have used the virus to push their preferred policy mixes.

      Something about “never let a crisis go to waste.”

    3. This really cannot be stressed enough.

      When the SCIENCE! ™ flips on a dime every time it is convenient to the Left, people on the Right are going to suspect maybe possibly there is something fishy going on. It isn’t just that the Government reversed itself CONSTANTLY, but that it always reversed itself to the benefit of the left.

      It is a bit shocking to me that Sullum doesn’t see this basic fact.

      1. It’s a bit shocking to me that you haven’t accepted Reason is pure propaganda just like NYT, CNN, or WaPo

        1. The thing that separates Reason from the rest is their comment section that serves to vet articles and the subsequent opinions. Even in its current wildly dysfunctional tribal incarnation it is able to use articles as a springboard for much more robust investigation of the issues presented. I have never seen the follow up in the comments section here surpassed in the the echo chambers of any other news blog or online newspaper – even if they were\are allowed. And keeping comments open and uncensored is a choice Reason has made so for that they should be applauded.

          1. Agree, which is why I come here. Rarely read the articles.

      2. This is absurd. Do you really think that “the Left” WANTS mask mandates and lockdowns *for their own sake*? That the CDC recommending wearing masks is somehow a political benefit to Democrats? This is stupid. Very very few people actually WANT to wear a mask, not on the left nor on the right. This is more tripe of treating Democrats like they are cartoon villains. I expect such nonsense from Nardz, but not from you.

        1. No they want them for the sake of POWER. Just like every two-bit dictator ever.

        2. Of course you want it, you get off on it Jeff.

        3. “Do you really think that “the Left” WANTS mask mandates and lockdowns *for their own sake*?”

          Yes.
          They talk about it openly.
          Write articles even.

        4. Yes. You can tell because they whined and cried for a year that Trump wasn’t being authoritarian enough.

        5. You are saying that the Leftist authorities didn’t loudly insist that mass gatherings were wrong when it was churches doing the gathering, but then suddenly find that it was ok when the Floyd Riots began? And they didn’t have rafts of self proclaimed scientific authorities backing their claim?

          Surely you get the game being played here, right? “Hur dur, stupid sky god people anti science! But wait, it is more complicated when social justice is at stake.” Isn’t it odd that every time a scientist comes out with a new study, it just happens to require a collectivist response? Shut down entire cities. Reorganize our economy! Make room for race riots!

          This goes beyond the healthcare debates. Remember when Russia came out and said, “Hey we could use a little global warming up north,” and within months there were very serious papers saying that in fact Climate Change would shut down the gulf stream and cause major cooling to northern Eurasia? I do.

          This is not about cartoon villainy. It is about confirmation bias. The Left likes to style itself as the scientific ones- because they have been scientifically trying to perfect man since their Eugenics programs of the early 1900s. And it just so happens that they have the megaphone, so it isn’t just one big fat coincidence that the SCIENCE! ™ happens to confirm everything they called for all along!

        6. I give you the Mayor of Champaign Illinois. This was back in March 2020. You just know she had this secret plan all along, just sitting n a big red folder in a special drawer in her desk waiting for an opportunity to whip it out.

          The mayor of Champaign, Illinois has declared a town emergency over the Wuhan coronavirus that includes a potential ban on the sale of firearms and ammunition.

          Champaign Mayor Deborah Frank Feinen has issued an executive order that would give her office “extraordinary powers.” She has issued the order despite the town and surrounding area not having a single case of the disease.

          Here is the list of other items from the declaration/executive order, which also includes the ability to ban the sale of “food, water, fuel, clothing, and/or other commodities, materials, goods, services and resources,” in addition to alcohol and gasoline. Additionally, government agents or officials have the ability to seize private property and to cut off the city water supply. The mayor justifies everything “in the interest of public safety and wolf.”

          After the declaration of an emergency, the Mayor may in the interest of public safety and welfare make any or all of the following orders and provide the following direction:

          (1) Issue such other orders as are imminently necessary for the protection of life and property.

          (2) Order a general curfew applicable to such geographical areas of the City or to the City as a whole, as the Mayor deems advisable, and applicable during such hours of the day or night as the Mayor deems necessary in the interest of public safety and welfare.

          (3) Order the closing of all retail liquor stores, including taverns and private clubs or portions thereof wherein the consumption of intoxicating liquor and beer is permitted;

          (4) Order the discontinuance of the sale of alcoholic liquor by any wholesaler or retailer;

          (5) Order the discontinuance of selling, distributing, or giving away gasoline or other liquid flammable or combustible products in any container other than a gasoline tank properly affixed to a motor vehicle;

          (6) Order the discontinuance of selling, distributing, dispensing or giving away of explosives or explosive agents, firearms or ammunition of any character whatsoever;

          (7) Order the control, restriction and regulation within the City by rationing, issuing quotas, fixing or freezing prices, allocating the use, sale or distribution of food, fuel, clothing and other commodities, materials, goods or services or the necessities of life;

          (8) (a) Order City employees or agents, on behalf of the City, to take possession of any real or personal property of any person, or to acquire full title or such lesser interest as may be necessary to deal with a disaster or emergency, and to take possession of and for a limited time, occupy and use any real estate to accomplish alleviation of the disaster, or the effects thereof;

          (b) In the event any real or personal property is utilized by the City, the City shall be liable to the owner thereof for the reasonable value of the use or for just compensation as the case may be.

          (9) Order restrictions on ingress or egress to parts of the City to limit the occupancy of any premises;

          (10) To make provision for the availability and use of temporary emergency housing;

          (11) Temporarily suspend, limit, cancel, convene, reschedule, postpone, continue, or relocate all meetings of the City Council, and any City committee, commission, board, authority, or other City body as deemed appropriate by the Mayor.

          (12) Require closing of business establishments.

          (13) Prohibit the sale or distribution within the City of any products which could be employed in a manner which would constitute a danger to public safety.

          (14) Temporarily close any and all streets, alleys, sidewalks, bike paths, public parks or public ways.

          (15) Temporarily suspend or modify, for not more than sixty (60) days, any regulation or ordinance of the City, including, but not limited to, those regarding health, safety, and zoning. This period may be extended upon approval of the City Council.

          (16) Suspend or limit the use of the water resources or other infrastructure.

          (17) Control, restrict, allocate, or regulate the use, sale, production, or distribution of food, water, fuel, clothing, and/or other commodities, materials, goods, services and resources.

          (18) Suspend or limit burning of any items or property with the City limits and up to two (2) miles outside the corporate limits.

          (19) Direct and compel the evacuation of all or part of the population from any stricken or threatened areas within the City if the mayor deems this action is necessary for the preservation of life, property, or other disaster or emergency mitigation, response or recovery and to prescribe routes, modes of transportation and destination in connection with an evacuation.

          (21) Approve application for local, state, or federal assistance.

          (22) Establish and control routes of transportation, ingress or egress.

          (23) Control ingress and egress from any designated disaster or emergency area or home, building or structures located therein.

          (24) Approve the transfer the direction, personnel, or functions of City departments and agencies for the purpose of performing or facilitating emergency or disaster services.

          (25) Accept services, gifts, grants, loans, equipment, supplies, and/or materials whether from private, nonprofit, or governmental sources.

          (26) Require the continuation, termination, disconnection, or suspension of natural gas, electrical power, water, sewer, communication or other public utilities or infrastructure.

          (27) Close or cancel the use of any municipally owned or operated building or other public facility.

          (28) Declare, issue, enforce, modify and terminate orders for quarantine and isolation of persons or animals posing a threat to the public, not conflicting with the directions of the Health Officer of the community.

          (29) Exercise such powers and functions in light of the exigencies of emergency or disaster including the waiving of compliance with any time consuming procedures and formalities, including notices, as may be prescribed by law.

          (30) Issue any and all such other orders or undertake such other functions and activities as the Mayor reasonably believes is required to protect the health, safety, and welfare of persons or property within the City or otherwise preserve the public peace or abate, clean up, or mitigate the effects of any emergency or disaster.

          1. Seems like the residents of Champaign, IL have some work to do.

        7. Yes. Some of them do anyway.

          If they didn’t want them, they wouldn’t be calling for them.

        8. Do you really think that “the Left” WANTS mask mandates and lockdowns *for their own sake*?

          They want them as a test of loyalty to the Party.

          Wear your talismans, recite the shibboleths, participate in the rituals… How else can we be sure you are “one of us”?

      3. It is a bit shocking to me that Sullum doesn’t see this basic fact.

        “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it” – somebody who probably met a lot of brown envelope journalists like Sullum.

    4. “Cuomo sticking COVID patients in nursing homes was no big deal.”
      That was an action that defied elementary logic and the rudimentary knowledge of the causes of disease.

      1. perfectly sound decision. take the dying and put them with the old folks, and as the covid deaths occur reap the benefit of payment to the home for taking care of the old folks.
        Has little effect on the covid people as they are dying like the old folks and the city is paying for the treatment of both, but maybe reaping the benefits of the covit 19 death benefits, if there are any!
        economic benefits to the city

  16. A New York Times Reporter Claims Americans Distrust the Government’s COVID-19 Advice Because They Don’t Understand How Science Works

    Science is “whatever your ‘betters’ says it is” and/or “whatever the majority of experts the clergy in lab coats priestly robes say.” Duh, everyone know that, except those deplorable rubes in flyover country, that is.

  17. Public health advice is not simply a function of science. It incorporates cost-benefit analyses and value judgments on which well-informed people of good faith can honestly differ.

    I have not seen a single cost-benefit analysis of Covid policies ever. Public health advice is 100% politicized and will only include testable and falsifiable analysis to the extent it furthers the political goal. All science contrary to the political goal will be ignored, discounted or labeled as fraudulent.

    1. “I have not seen a single cost-benefit analysis of Covid policies ever.”
      It’s really very simple; we pay the costs, the politicians (and their buddies) reap the benefits.
      Next question?

    2. pretty much this.

    3. ” testable and falsifiable analysis to the extent it furthers the political goal.”

      We even had falsifiable data. Remember the “flatten the curve” websites that showed us all those scary scenarios if we didn’t GRAVELY infringe on everyone’s rights, killing our economies in the process? Every one of those models was invalidated, and all that happened was the government changed the subject.

      This is why arguing about the SCIENCE! ™ is so pointless. They have an infinitely bigger megaphone than us. They will change the subject, parrot “New science”, and when pushed, censor us if our facts do not agree. The question of whether we should lockdown, mask up, jab jab jab, was never a scientific question- it was a moral question- and allowing the government to demand we skip that question because of a crisis doomed us to 2 years of bullshit.

      1. 2 years is being very optimistic

    4. Here is one
      “COVID-19: Rethinking the Lockdown Groupthink,”
      Frontiers in Public Health, 1 February 2021, Volume 9, Article 625778, doi: 10.3389/fpubh.2021.625778

  18. Americans do not understand how the scientific process works.

    *The* scientific process! ROFLMAO! There can be only one!

    1. There is A (or THE) scientific process.

      Fauci says some shit, the NYT writes about it, punctuating the article with “The Science is Settled” and then the media whines about misinformation on Facebook.

  19. Yep, no question about it. Us rubes listen to a guy saying “I lied to you”; then doubt everything else he says. What a bunch of skeptical idiots, right?
    Oh, by the way, that same logic applies to a “news” organization as well.

  20. I just love getting lectures on “denying the science” from humanities majors.

    The same people keep complaining that “we ‘need to’ adopt the metric system” while demonstrating that they know absolutely nothing about measuring anything.

    1. Are they the same humanities majors who contend there are more than two genders as well?

      1. Well, grammatically, of course, in the English language (whether we consider the British, American, Australian et al versions thereof) there are, in fact, three genders, viz, masculine, feminine, and neuter.

        Some pedants will insist that gender is a grammatical or linguistic concept rather than a biological or scientific one. For example, in Latin and its main derivatives, Italian, Spanish and French, there are only two genders. Thus, in French we might write or say “La plume de ma tante est sur la table” (My aunt’s pen is on the table). Here we see that my aunt, my aunt’s pen and the table are feminine due to the use of the feminine definite article, “la” applied to pen and table (plume/table) as well as the feminine possessive pronoun applied to my aunt (tante).

        What any of the foregoing has to do with men or women who think they aren’t what there genitalia suggests that they are or with men or women who don’t feel like they want to have intercourse with anyone, I’m not exactly sure.

        I will leave that up to others to figure out.

        But, for now, if you want me to use a plural pronoun for you, forget it.

        1. For example, in Latin and its main derivatives, Italian, Spanish and French, there are only two genders.

          sorry, but Latin has a neuter gender…

            1. Sorry for the HTML fail. Seems like Latin is not my only poor subject. 🙂

            2. Again we are at gender is a matter of grammar not biology.
              In French or Italian, change the gender, change the meaning.

          1. Romanian has but two genders too. There is a funny joke about it but is only good in Romanian.

            1. I’ve got it: A Romanian non-binary person walks into a Bucharest bar….

    2. Oh, BTW, for any metric enthusiasts out there, “we” have adopted the metric system across huge swathes of “our” industry and commerce.

      For example, all American auto makers use metric units in manufacturing their products. Wine and spirits producers use metric units in selling their products. Many states now allow the sale of goods denominated in either customary or metric units. The list goes on.

      1. Hell, we’ve been buying our soda in 2-liter bottles for nearly a half-century now.

        1. And our booze (except for beer which is sold primarily in fluid ounces with metric units (ml) shown as an afterthought.

          In the sciences metric or SI units have been used for a century or more. Engineering schools have been using SI units since congress passed the metrication act in 1976 as has just about every school district in the USA from first grade on. There is not a single person in the USA under the age of about thirty who does not have some understanding of SI units. Fortunately Policy in the US is not based on what children want. On this issue the government has generally accepted that most people are most comfortable with “customary units”. They want to buy their butter and beef by the pound and their milk by the gallon.

          When that amorphous thing we know as “the market” determines that “we” are ready “we” will start using metric units for everything or not.*

          *It is worth remembering that the universal unit of distance at sea and in the air is still the nautical mile (equal to one minute of latitude) and that the universal unit of speed at sea and in the air is still the “knot” or nautical mile per hour. That is unlikely to change since pretty much all aviation and navigation rely on those as “customary units.” If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

          1. Booze has been in750ml and 1.5 liter containers for a long time now. Soda and water have been in 500ml, 1l, 2l bottles for a long time now too.

            Beer and soda CANs are still 12 or 16 ounces usually.

            1. Imported beers frequently are sold in 330ml(11.2fl oz) cans or bottles.

              Democrats in the Florida Legislature resisted a change in the state law that allowed retail beer sales only in 8-12-16-etc fl oz containers for years. To buy imports you needed to go to a bar, since they were only sold in the customary metric containers of their home country.

          2. I sure do wish that all nuts and bolts on new equipment were metric instead of SAE or a mix of metric and SAE. If the go-to 9/16th is too big or small, it’s some mental gymnastics to figure out which is next to try, esp. if you’ve gotten a few head out of order. If the go-to 10mm socket is too big or small, finding the 9mm or 11mm is pretty easy.

      2. And we use the imperial system where it makes sense- like in deciding what to wear outside for the day. Fahrenheit is oodles better than Celsius due to its higher precision.

      3. My 230 HP car with 16″ wheels says otherwise

      4. Once had to review a design that was in metric because some of the work was going to also be in Canada. After having a meltdown, I red inked everything back into English units.

        There are two types of countries on planet Earth: those that use the metric system and those that have sent a man to the surface of the moon and returned them safely.

      5. But pipe fittings are in English units

      6. And US customary units are defined in terms of metric units.

        I’m glad we aren’t on metric. It’s certainly preferable in many ways for most technical and scientific things. I can’t imagine doing carpentry in metric, though. Powers of 2 are cooler than powers of 10.

    3. Metric is as arbitrary as inches, but at least it scales easier. I’d prefer it for ordering materials, honestly.

      And I always wondered what happened to humanities majors… Kinda figured most petered out to government work, but I suppose NYT fits.

      1. The US decimalized customary units well over a hundred years ago. the complaint that SI “scales easier” is nonsense.

        I was keeping track of production for three asphalt plants as well as the incoming purchases of aggregates and asphalt cement in either short tons or gallons conveniently decimalized nearly fifty years ago when I first started working as an entry level clerk.

        1. And of course the imperial system has other advantages, such as when I do wood working, or cooking. Being able to create cuts without converting fractions to decimals (as you must in the metric system) is very helpful in the shop or kitchen.

  21. Maybe, just maybe, it’s because the government has and continues to straight out lie to the American people everyday.
    As George Carlin once said,” there are two things I live by: I don’t believe anything the government says and I don’t take very seriously anything the mainstream media says.”
    All governments lie as well they all steal but that’s for another time.
    Fauci has lied through his teeth. He has spent his entire grifting career in Washington with nothing to show for it except one blunder after another starting with the AIDS/HIV epidemic. That’s over 40 years of bureaucratic blunder.
    The government on the other hand should not be trusted in any way to tell us the truth.From propagandizing Americans into one disastrous war after another to lying about this phony pandemic.
    It’s unfortunate there are so many brain dead Americans, products of public schools, who fall for it every time.
    These are the ones who should not be allowed to vote.

  22. “To frustrated Americans unfamiliar with the circuitous and often contentious path to scientific discovery, public health officials have seemed at times to be moving the goal posts and flip-flopping, or misleading, even lying to, the country,” she writes in a “news analysis.”

    Writes Jacob Sullum in a “news analysis” “analysis”.

    1. I think he’s been reading the comments and is upset.

  23. “ Health officials have not acknowledged clearly or often enough that their recommendations may—and very probably would—change as the virus, and their knowledge of it, evolved”

    If the problem is health officials and their communication of their recommendations, then how is the problem people misunderstanding science?

    You being a bad communicator doesn’t mean your audience doesn’t understand science.

  24. As far as Mandavilli is concerned, the CDC has simply been following the science all along

    No, not “the science,” “The Science.” God is usually capitalized.

  25. Mandavilli has been shown to be an idiot, why would anybody write an article about her without assuming that is true?

  26. Hey, these things happen when you’re in the Super Science racket.

    Masks are required in most public indoor spaces for residents age 5 and up — regardless of vaccination status. The move comes as every county in the state has been categorized as substantial or high risk for transmission of the coronavirus.

    From the CDC on disposable medical masks:

    Disposable medical masks (also known as surgical masks) are loose-fitting devices that were designed to be work by medical personnel to protect accidental contamination of a patient wounds, and to protect the wearer against splashes or sprays of bodily fluids. There is limited evidence for their effectiveness in preventing influenza virus transmission either when worn by the infected person for source control or when worn by uninfected persons to reduce exposure. Our systematic review found no significant effect on face masks on the transmission of laboratory confirmed influenza.

    1. Moreover, they are for 1-time use only. The way people use masks render them at best marginally useful. Better to stay an extra 3 feet away

      1. Or just stay home if you’re sick, and behave as normal if you’re not.
        Simple stuff.

  27. “Many Americans do not have much faith in the government’s COVID-19 advice, which has changed repeatedly during the pandemic, often for questionable reasons. It has not helped that local, state, and federal public health officials have defended their positions with disingenuous arguments or misrepresented the scientific evidence.”

    An important part of Dr. Fauci’s job as the head of the NIAID is to be a trusted source of information for the American people on issues surrounding infection disease. Fairly or unfairly, a significant portion of the American public have completely lost faith in Dr. Fauci as a source of information on infectious disease. So, why is Dr. Fauci still the head of the NIAID if he can’t do his job anymore?

    It certainly isn’t because the government cares so much about giving the American people information from a person they trust.

    I suspect Dr. Fauci is still the head of the NIAID because the one party, Democrat government that controls the White House, the House, and the Senate doesn’t care whether the American people trust the information they get from the NIAID–at least, not anywhere near as much as they care about showing contempt toward those Americans, who don’t support the Democrats, by antagonizing them with a bureaucrat they hate and distrust.

    1. Replacing the current crop of bureaucrats with people who aren’t distrusted might improve the situation, but that’s just one side of the equation. The other side has to do with persuasion. To persuade the general population to do something different (especially for their own good), it’s generally necessary to show them that you care about them first. And how can the Democrats pivot to that at this late stage in the pandemic?

      The Democrats spent the last 18 months showing nothing but contempt to average people and their resistance to lockdowns, school closures, and mask mandates, and every time a progressive inflicted a mask requirement, opposed opening schools, or locked down their local economy, they made it worse. They demonstrated that they didn’t care about how those Americans felt, what they wanted, or even if they lost their livelihoods.

      Our Democrat controlled government might be able to turn that around when it comes to vaccines if they managed to start showing they cared about their fellow Americans rather than showed them contempt, but I wouldn’t bet on that happening. The problem for the Democrats is that in order to persuade people that you care about them, you probably need to . . . um . . . actually care about them, and I don’t think the Democrats can bring themselves to do that.

      Using the coercive power of government to force people to make sacrifices for the greater good, as Democrats see it, is what being progressive is all about. You can’t push forcing certain people you hate to make sacrifices as the solution to every problem, from climate change to free speech online and from police reform to the pandemic, without them noticing that you hate them along the way. In fact, you can’t both openly advocate using the government to violate people’s rights and persuade them that you care about them.

      Caring about people’s rights is what it means to care about people.

      1. Disaffected, defeated, delusional, desperate, downscale right-wing clingers are among my favorite culture war casualties.

        1. You’re an idiot.

          1. Ken I think he’s the anime twin of queen amalthea

        2. It must really gall you that those “Disaffected, defeated, delusional, desperate, downscale right-wing clingers” are still higher status than you, doesn’t it, Arthur?

          1. When I said that I don’t think the Democrats can bring themselves to care about their fellow Americans, I wasn’t kidding, and this is a pretty good example of their mentality. Ask a progressive why the white, blue collar, middle class thinks that Democrats hate them, and the conversation almost invariably morph into their explanation for why the white, blue collar, middle class should be hated.

            1. Ymmv. In my neck of the woods, those are the folks that answer the phone at 2 am when there is an emergency. They get out of bed and head to it. Those are the folks out in 20 below weather fixing a downed power line. Those are the folks that work two straight days to fix a broken water pipe to restore service to others. They aren’t getting rich. They aren’t getting famous. Books are not written about them. And no statures are sculpted commemorating them. But we as a nation do enjoy the standard of living we have because of them.

        3. Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland, Exhibit A to Ken Shultz’s comment.

        4. I really don’t understand why you shit on your fellow Democrats so much Artie.

      2. “To persuade the general population to do something different (especially for their own good)”

        Not quite. You have to persuade me to make a known sacrifice in exchange for an unknown good for an unknown person.

        No one does that. Lots of people make perceived sacrifices in exchange for social status. No one actually endures hardship on behalf of an unknown good.

        1. When my girlfriend wants me to do something she knows I don’t want to do, she gives me a kiss, tells me she loves me, and asks me to do what she wants–and I don’t think I’ve ever said no.

          There was no upside to going to her awful sister’s kid’s piano recital, and spending hours at her sister’s awful house, listening to her awful words and eating her awful food, didn’t have any upside either.

          Generally speaking, consumer advertising doesn’t try to get you to buy their products, user their services, or try their restaurant by treating you with contempt. They want you to know that they care about you, they care about what you want, and they want you to be happy.

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pZodu9AgwZE

          1. Lol
            I enjoyed that story, Ken

          2. Sort version: Kamala didn’t disparage the guys that could help get her political power; she sucked on their cocks.

            1. Hey! Some of us are trying to eat lunch here! C’mon, man!

    2. A single person, (and yes, especially Fauci) never should have been a spokesperson for something as complex and contentious as this “pandemic”. It should have been a board, quietly advising policy makers, with their meetings and discussions broadcast live on the internet. That’s how you do transparency.

      1. That wouldn’t work, because even if you assume that we all agree on the “science”, we don’t agree on the value of the trade offs.

        At the end of the day, we do NOT agree on how many grandmas we are willing to let die in exchange for keeping the economy running.

        For some reason the people who support a lockdown most, are the ones whose lives are least disrupted.

        1. I’m not trying to suggest it would have “worked” but it would have been more transparent, without Fauci becoming a singular voice of “fact”. That would be much better than Fauci claiming he’s “the voice of science”.

          1. My favorite bit of absurdity in all of this is my super bright electrical engineer cousin, IQ around 170, naming his newly adopted pet Fauci in a burst of adoration.

            But our betters are sO sMrT that they are immune from silly things like irrational worship.

      2. Even so, he’s more interesting as an answer to the question–why is he still there?

        It isn’t to provide a source of information that Americans trust. The people who need convincing don’t trust him anymore.

        The Democrats don’t care whether Americans have a trusted source of information on the pandemic. That’s also, presumably, why they haven’t replaced him with a committee for the sake of transparency.

        Fauci’s job, apparently, is to take the heat for federal policy away from the White House and to keep the research grants flowing.

        1. Fauci is also supposed to be brake to control the Overton window. It’s supposed to be unacceptable to contradict an expert bureaucrat like Fauci or the people at the CDC.

          1. The problem is that that Overton Window sometimes does need to be moved. If the contradiction is substantive and based on fact, then a Fauci, or his hypothetical replacement needs to either substantively address it or incorporate it into the dialogue. Because you can’t maintain a system of authority when it’s obvious that that authority is evading significant data points. That’s precisely why so many people don’t trust the existing authorities.

            1. The Overton window should be moved sometimes, and trying to dictate terms to the market of ideas can be as futile as trying to dictate terms to the auto market. Fauci couldn’t stop people from talking about the origin of the pandemic, not even with the government, the news media, and social media behind him. People talked about the ideas they wanted to talk about anyway.

        2. The Democrats don’t care whether Americans have a trusted source of information on the pandemic. That’s also, presumably, why they haven’t replaced him with a committee for the sake of transparency.

          Fauci’s job, apparently, is to take the heat for federal policy away from the White House and to keep the research grants flowing.

          I have no doubt that I’m playing checkers, and they’re playing 11-d chess.

          1. You’re the one playin 11-d chess. Fauci’s just playing defensive checkers and keeping the money spigot running. It’s not complicated. It’s simple.

            “The NIH invests about $41.7* billion annually in medical research for the American people.

            More than 80 percent of NIH’s funding is awarded for extramural research, largely through almost 50,000 competitive grants to more than 300,000 researchers at more than 2,500 universities, medical schools, and other research institutions in every state.

            About 10% of the NIH’s budget supports projects conducted by nearly 6,000 scientists in its own laboratories, most of which are on the NIH campus in Bethesda, Maryland.”

            —-U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

            https://www.nih.gov/about-nih/what-we-do/budget

            If we started going after Fauci and what he did with that research money, it might threaten that $41.7 billion in cash flow the NIH dishes out every year. That’s a lot of money they’re throwing around.

            Amazon’s gross profit was $115 billion in 2019 for the sake of comparison.

            1. Did Ken just quote Big Sean?

              1. I don’t know who Big Sean was, but maybe Big Sean was quoting Big Ken!

    3. Who put Fauci front and center at the beginning to get those great ratings? Who didn’t fire him after he lied to the American people about masks? Who didn’t fire Fauci when he refused to speak against the mostly peaceful, mostly social distanced protests?

      Peppermint Farms remembers.

      To be fair to that person, he made the decision to keep Fauci to get elected, just like his eviction moratorium. What lesson should Republicans learn from this, the same one they always fail to learn – Don’t do things to placate the media/progressives, they won’t vote for you anyway but it may just turn people away who would have.

      1. Trump improved his 2016 total votes received by at least 10 million in 2020.

  28. Pandemic management pointers and science tips from superstitious, half-educated hayseeds who prefer faith healers and livestock supplements to reason and vaccines are always a treat.

    1. Showing contempt for average Americans is a big part of what got us into this mess, and if you go around showing contempt for your fellow Americans despite that, you might be stupid.

      1. Kirkland is a fed. Overpaid and underqualified.

      2. It’s almost the exact opposite of the left’s rhetoric of 100 years ago. It’s what you would have expected to hear from a fat French aristocrat, in 1788.

    2. Literally is what the left is doing. They have become a self righteous intolerant cult that cannot accept new information. Their religion is this abasement to a form of science that doesn’t actually exist.

      But Artie knows this, he’s just a bigoted half wit.

      Also you managed to scrape all the Bush neocons into your party. How’s that feel now.

    3. Retarded, impotent, self-loathing, raging hicklib closeted faggots who aspire to bureaucratic mediocrity and still fall short are always a treat.

  29. cute how many different takes there are on my take.

  30. As far as Mandavilli is concerned, the CDC has simply been following the science all along, a point that Americans are too ignorant to recognize.

    “Those people” are too stupid to run their own lives. In fact, we should probably bring slavery back.

    /What Mandavilli is really thinking.

  31. It’s a fundamental conflict between “what message generates the best public health outcome,” and what are the specific details of my specific situation.

    And then we see the leaders consistently failing to abide by their own public policy generalizations, for reasons.

    Fuck it. It can both be true that I understand why a government agency supports a mask mandate, and I decline to participate.

    1. Is it?

      1. Define best public health outcome (note: to do so you’ll also have to define public health)

      2. Explain how in/action (the details) in anyone’s particular case conflicts with the best public health outcome as you’ve identified above

      If I’ve already had covid, or I’m not at statistically significant risk of harm should I catch covid, and decline to get vaccinated, it in no way prevents anyone else from getting vaccinated if they choose to do so. If I’m not symptomatic and don’t wear a mask, not only can I not spread the virus, but I’m also in no way preventing anyone else from wearing a mask. If I’m not symptomatic and choose to go about my life as normal in public, I’m in no way preventing anyone else from staying home to avoid risk. And if I’m not symptomatic, I can’t harm this mythical public health collectivists so obsess over.

      1. We end pandemics with vaccines.

        Before vaccines, viruses killed off large fractions of human populations regularly.

        Vaccines are perhaps the single greatest invention humans have ever shat into the universe.

        I would say public education, but clearly it’s not working very well. You’re not special. You’re not a snowflake. You not taking the vaccine puts humans at risk. You’d be less of a threat if you were waving a gun and shouting allahu akbar. The fact that you aren’t is the only reason you’re permitted to spread your filth.

        1. You didn’t even come close to answering either question

        2. Now do AIDS, faggot.

          1. If we did AIDS the way you morons do COVID, we’d be buttfucking you against your will constantly.

        3. “Ha Ha!!!”— Nelson Muntz

        4. Really, when have we done that? Smallpox was endemic for thousands of years before it was wiped out. Polio too. It’s fantastic that with vaccines people could make those horrible diseases not exist anymore. But they are not remotely comparable to an airborne virus with loads of animal reservoirs and no vaccine that provides sterilizing immunity. Pandemics that we encounter are generally respiratory diseases like flu or coronaviruses and we have never ended a pandemic of that sort with vaccines that I can think of. Vaccines help somewhat to keep deaths low and increase community immunity, they do not in general “end pandemics”. Pandemics end when a virus becomes endemic, not when no one dies from a particular thing anymore.

          1. So your evidence for why you don’t have to take the vaccine is two diseases eradicated by vaccine.

            1. Are you getting stupider?
              I said nothing about myself, nor whether anyone should or should not take the vaccine.
              I simply responded to your wildly wrong claim that “we end pandemics with vaccines”.

  32. No. Americans trust the Government’s COVID-19 Advice Because They Don’t Understand How Science Works. Or how Government “works.”

  33. Libertarians used to say it’s all about personal choice. Now they just “follow the science” which is another way of saying get on your knees and pray.

    1. “Follow the science” is always bullshit. Science doesn’t tell you what the right policy is. Ideally it tells you what is going on and what is likely to happen if you do one thing or another, but that’s it. It doesn’t tell you what we should do about it. That requires judgements of a sort that science doesn’t touch.

  34. Here’s the science I don’t understand: how does prohibiting evictions stop the spread of WuFlu?

    1. It doesn’t. It prevents “excess deaths”. When you lock down the entire country and make it illegal to earn a living, people can’t pay the rent. If people can’t pay the rent, they get evicted. If people get evicted, they commit suicide or die of drug overdoses because of the lack of availability of Safe Injection Sites. Those are deaths that COVID caused.

      Died with COVID, died from COVID, died during COVID.

      1. The dogs in Australia will be reported as COVID-related deaths.

      2. Another totally unrelated fringe benefit that certainly nobody in government ever thought of: independent landlords who can’t service the mortgages on their investment properties when they are unable to collect rents are forced into foreclosure and colossally huge, well-capitalized hedge funds, REITs and investment banks who can afford to hold the properties until rent collections begin again get to purchase those properties for pennies on the dollar, distorting the housing market and making homeownership untenable if not impossible.

  35. Evidence that face masks play an important role in reducing virus transmission, which was pretty meager early in the pandemic, has been reinforced by more recent studies,

    Please provide a link to at least one study showing masks as they are worn in practice, i.e. ill- fitting, filthy, and below the nose, reduce virus transmission. A study showing a brand new N95 mask, fitted, handled and worn properly in laboratory conditions, can reduce the inhalation and exhalation of some percentage of particulate matter, is worthless.

    1. I can show you one where they don’t. does that count?

      Disposable medical masks (also known as surgical masks) are loose-fitting devices that were designed to be worn by medical personnel to protect accidental contamination of patient wounds, and to protect the wearer against splashes or sprays of bodily fluids (36). There is limited evidence for their effectiveness in preventing influenza virus transmission either when worn by the infected person for source control or when worn by uninfected persons to reduce exposure. Our systematic review found no significant effect of face masks on transmission of laboratory-confirmed influenza.

    2. I heard an interesting theory the other day that because of the immune response in the lungs stimulated by the vaccine those infected after getting the shot tend to have symptoms isolated to their sinuses. Anecdotally, this is exactly what my wife experienced. Because of the lack of other symptoms, the prevalence of allergies, and the perception of invulnerability of the vaccine, people are not isolating and because it is concentrated in the sinuses, they are spraying it all over even when covering their mouths. This type of information gets lost in the attempt to scare the unvaccinated with the delta variant. Vaccinated people may actually be more contagious than the unvaccinated.

      That would make me a fucking hero for not taking the shot, toughing it out and not spreading the contagion. For my wife and I, contact tracing reveals zero subsequent infections. Nobody at either of our workplaces tested positive after us, and we stayed completely isolated other than work and the testing center until receiving a negative test.

      The only people who increase risk for others are sick. Vaccination status does not change the calculus at all.

      1. Yes yes. All those scientists telling you to get the vaccine are corrupt morons. Youtube ‘scientists’ and personal anecdotes represent the ‘real truth’.

        1. You didn’t even come close to addressing his comment

          1. Democratic Underground hasn’t published any new talking points yet and he tried to go it on his own.

        2. It’s hilarious that you deride “YouTube scientists” when YouTube has censored anyone outside of the CDC orthodoxy, including the CDC itself when the orthodoxy changed and they hadn’t gotten the memo yet. Not only is your talking point rather stupid in consideration of the fact that you get all of your science from Buzzfeed and 60 Minutes, but YouTube is if anything even more cloistered than your Buzzfeed and 60 Minutes circle jerk.

        3. The vaccine was supposed to prevent the spread of the virus. Now we know that’s not true and we are beginning to see from the new data coming in that it may marginally protect you from contracting it and do zero in the prevention of the spread of the virus. Keep in mind, you were finger wagging everyone about getting the vaccine to stop the spread of the virus. You’ve been wrong at every step, given in to goal post shifting and still are arrogant enough to believe you are still right. You’ve been spreading misinformation this whole time. It’s like you delight in being the Reason Village Idiot.

          ChemJeff Radical Village Idiot.

  36. I would argue that the NYT reporter is the one who doesn’t really understand how science works. Those of us who do understand it know it’s both its strengths and it’s weaknesses – and very clearly understand that what the CDC has been doing is politics far more than science.

    1. The NYT readership also don’t understand it. But it makes them feel good about themselves if one of their priests disparages folks of “another religion.”

  37. One way to reign in this BS is to challenge TPTB when they announce they are considering/evaluating the data in preparation for a policy decision: “With all due respect, please show us your work. You know, the raw data, the hypotheses, the statistical analyses.”

    1. *rein in*

      *** gets coffee ***

    2. They stuck their thumbs in thier asses in the morning. When they likes how it smelled after pulling it out in the afternoon they knew thier hypothesis was correct.

  38. That’s inaccurate, we do understand the science, the cdc is missing the fact that we have to learn how to live with viruses just like we have before. they keep pushing vaccines, and even back in the day, they did the same thing. we are all still here. You cannot make us sterile and keep us away from viruses and bacteria, we have to be exposed in order for our bodies to know what the virus and bacteria looks like, so our body CAN fight it of. If our immune systems never get that chance, when a new virus is introduced, we could die faster and in greater numbers. The CDC is a power hungry entity and falsely fauci is the head of that serpent!

  39. Obviously anyone that doesn’t write to the New York Times is either stupid or ignorant. Or stupid and ignorant!!! (sarc)

  40. “New York Times Reporter Claims Americans Distrust the Government”

    Seeing as the current administration and the New York Times report to the same bosses, I can see why they’re upset.

      1. The Sulzbergers and their billionaire pals.

        1. I guess that they do act cold-blooded though, so sure.

        2. Have you people ever considered the fact that the Jews actually do a pretty good job of running things?

          1. “You people”
            “Jews”

            I’m guessing you heard a dog whistle in Mother’s comment. You know what that means, right? You know who hears the dog whistle, right?

  41. I blame the NYT’s pay wall for my ignorance.

  42. LOL the ‘seasonality theorists’ have been predicting everything that’s happened in the last 12 months. We told you to watch out for the sunbelt summer spike back in May when Fauci had no idea why cases were dropping in Texas.

    I can think of 10 people off the top of my head who would eviscerate the ‘leaders’ of the science, but OF COURSE those people are never allowed anywhere near a hot mic.

  43. Here is another possibility: NO MATTER WHAT THE SCIENCE, you have no moral obligation to stick needles in your arm to protect strangers from a natural threat.

    The reason people like Sullum and NYT fret about people believing the science is that they have allowed themselves to believe that facts will somehow resolve a moral question. They are, to put it frankly, deluded. There are facts on both sides of this debate and Sullum has ZERO ability to tell whether or not he is reading the correct ones. ZERO. He is an econ and psych major, for christ’s sake- two disciplines notorious for cherrypicking data and poor statistical rigor.

    If the SCIENCE! ™ crowd really wanted to get people looking honestly at the facts, they would stop using their facts as a substitute for logic and morality. When they say “Right or wrong, the science says this is a crisis (or the cost to you is super low” they are trying to elevate SCIENCE! ™ to a position it has no right having. And when they claim to be The Smart Ones, then I can only conclude that they are stupid or disingenuous. Neither of those cases gives me any confidence in their data.

  44. The NYT, dutifully carrying the govt’s water. Never mind the contradictory advice. Never mind how the lab leak theory was initially conspiracy stuff before turning into a spoiler alert. Never mind the bouncing mask guidance – none to prevent a run on supply, then one, then two, back to one, wear them at home, too. Never mind the rank dismissal of alternative measures despite a host of doctors with no connection to one another reporting success. No, the problem is us. Never the top men. Never their stenographers.

    The messaging has been so fucked up that it can only be described as intentional. The whole point was to sow fear, chaos, and confusion, not to inform, not to adequately focus on the most at-risk populations, even though everyone knew who they were from the start. Instead of a focus on elder care facilities, old and sick people in general, and some guidance for those with compromised immune systems, we shut down schools, offices, entire towns in some cases (I’m looking at you, Vegas, eternally grateful we got out before the Strip went dark).

    Rather than one time saying, “we just don’t know; this thing is new and things are rapidly changing,” they chose a course of action and stuck to it like the worst of zealots. In many ways, it became a religion, with its talismans – masks and vaccines, its priests in Fauci and politicians who flouted the very rules they enforced on us, and its catechism – distancing, lockdowns, avoid family at holidays, every large gathering is a potential super spreader, except riots, of course. Future comms classes will, or should, be reading about this in the same vein as the response to the Exxon Valdez.

  45. it is because officials have failed to clearly explain that COVID-19 science is constantly evolving…

    There is some truth to this.

    No there isn’t.

    Science does not evolve, it emerges. It is the discovery and description of things as they actually exist. Theories are either replicated or falsified. What they are calling ‘constantly evolving’ here is doublespeak for parties with their own interests rushing to publish theories that have not been rigorously tested or sufficiently replicated or publishing theories based on insufficient data and/or fudging data where a more robust data set would have otherwise have falsified the theory.

    That is all fine and dandy when studying black holes and sub-atomic particles. The speculation that led some scientists to think the first atomic explosion could destroy the planet proved unfounded. The worst errors in those processes have resulted in populations exposed to deadly amounts of radiation, but the dangers are usually just as significant to the scientists themselves, which tends to have a limiting effect on their tolerance for risk.

    That is not remotely true when studying human behavior or the transmissibility of infectious diseases. Would anyone claim with a straight face the science of the syphilis bacteria ‘evolved’ in response to the Tuskegee experiment? In case anyone has forgotten, that experiment was begun by the USPHS and transferred to the CDC after its creation.

    Think about this critically for a moment. The science of viral function and transmission is so well understood that scientists can literally alter the function of a virus to be transmittable to new species in a lab. To engage in such potentially dangerous experiments absent a near-certain knowledge of what will result and without complete control over laboratory conditions would stretch the limits of the word irresponsible to what could only be described as xenocidal. The science of forced evolution of infectious agents should not be ‘evolving’, they better good and god damned well be able to predict the outcome. How could the NIH ever justify funding ‘evolving’ science to Congress?

    Here we are, being told by the ‘scientists’ charged with maintaining this particular body of science for the most technologically advanced nation on the world that the science is ‘evolving’. Fuck that. Tell us what you know and tell us what you don’t know. Don’t speculate, and don’t treat us like children. Real scientists would have a commitment to truth above any other interest.

  46. Kinda weird that it’s been 18 months and there’s not any officially recommended therapeutic treatment, no?

    1. Don’t be a selfish prick and use old off-patent medicines to control symptoms so that you never have to see the inside of a hospital! Wait until you are on the verge of death so we can put you on a ventilator and collect a $20,000 check from the federal government, or else inject yourself with a vaccine whose safety trials will not be complete for another 2 years! We’re all in this together to bolster Pfizer’s balance sheet!

  47. Power!!!!! UNLIMITED POWER!!!!!!
    – Sheev Palpatine

  48. The government burns its credibility on “noble lies”, and then blames the people for being sceptical.

    1. Even Slate.com gets it…they got through at least 4 “noble lies”

      https://slate.com/technology/2021/07/noble-lies-covid-fauci-cdc-masks.html

      “Noble lies—small untruths—yield unpredictable outcomes. Nietzsche once wrote, “Not that you lied to me, but that I no longer believe you, has shaken me.” Public health messaging is predicated on trust, which overcomes the enormous complexity of the scientific literature, creating an opportunity to communicate initiatives effectively. Still, violation of this trust renders the communication unreliable. When trust is shattered, messaging is no longer clear and straightforward, and instead results in the audience trying to reverse-engineer the statement based on their view of the speaker’s intent. Simply put, noble lies can rob confidence from the public, leading to confusion, a loss of credibility, conspiracy theories, and obfuscated policy.

      “Noble lies are a trap. We cannot predict the public’s behavior, and loss of trust is devastating. The general population is far too skeptical to blindly follow the advice of experts, and far too intelligent to be easily duped.

  49. Where on earth did this idea come from that biology, virology, immunology, genetics, epidemiology, were so easy that all you had to do was to post data sets on the web and your average idiot with a Youtube channel could correctly figure out what was going on? To do science correctly is hard, and brilliant people specialize for their entire lives in the field just to make small progress. No, I don’t trust most of you know the tiniest fuck what is *actually* going on when it comes to the science of virology or infectious disease or genetics or public health. You listen to demagogues with Youtube channels who tell you what you want to hear, cloaked with science-y sounding arguments that give the argument a veneer of respectability. And then you think you know “science”, and so the government scientists, or all of those pointy-headed experts with letters after their names, who come to different conclusions, they must OBVIOUSLY be corrupt frauds because they say things that you don’t like. That is not science, that is arrogance and paranoia.

    Technical subjects require technical experts in order to fully understand the subject. To hear some of you talk, anyone is capable of doing anything. Sure, your average guy is capable of performing open heart surgery, and capable of playing Mozart concertos on a violin, and capable of starting for the New York Yankees, and capable of solving theoretical physics problems. Oh, and also capable of understanding the details of virology and epidemiology in order to navigate the perils of a pandemic by analyzing the raw data from some lab. And that to suggest that the average person is not capable of some, or even any, of these things is being condescending, or treating people like children. No, it is recognizing REALITY. Not everyone is excellent at everything. Not everyone is capable of doing everything.

    It is also having the humility to know when you don’t really have the knowledge or expertise that you think you might have. You all could use a big dose of humility right about now. Appearances can be deceiving and to truly master a subject requires more than just staring at datasets.

    The responses to this post have been revealing. Now I understand why a lot of you don’t want to get the vaccine. It is because you are so arrogant that you think that because you know how to interpret a graph, that that makes you an expert in everything. No, it doesn’t.

    1. It makes a certain amount of sense considering the right-wing disposition towards education generally. To get an education, all you need is a brain and an Internet connection. You don’t need to go to school, you don’t need credentials, you don’t need formal training, you don’t need practical experience, you don’t need anything in the formal education establishment. All those pointy-headed elitists with letters after their names, *at best* they are just elitist gatekeepers, and at worst they are progressive totalitarian indoctrination shock troops for the Communist Left. Or some such nonsense like that. So of COURSE they don’t believe what the experts say. The so-called ‘experts’ were NEVER necessary to understand any subject! They have a brain, they know how to read a graph, how hard could it be? You don’t need a Ph.D. in theoretical physics in order to understand the latest physics research, all you need is a good Internet connection and to watch reruns of Big Bang Theory.

      1. And Jeff you have a physics or chemistry or engineering degree? And you have worked in research either in a govt lab or private sector? Just asking..

        Credentials? Sure what does that mean? a law degree? an education degree or a gender studies from Brown..

        1. Titus,
          I have degrees in physics and engineering and have led large research enterpizes in each discipline and I find that chemjeff is very accurate in his posts

          1. Luckily physics and engineering don’t require the basic knowledge to spell the word “enterprises”. When you were leading those teams did you routinely lie about the same thing over and over and over again despite having been presented with contradictory evidence dozens of times like you have been doing with the link between obesity and COVID for the last 2 months?

      2. If the experts are so good why have they been wrong the whole time while the seasonality theorists continue to predict everything that’s happening?

        You can call people stupid but you can’t convince them with actual data because it’s all behind us. And everybody knows it.

        1. If the experts are so good why have they been wrong the whole time

          Well, that’s a loaded question. They haven’t “been wrong the whole time”. They have been right sometimes and wrong sometimes. Because that is how the scientific process works. They were wrong more initially because we didn’t know much about the virus. The initial models for transmission were wrong. The initial guidance on masks was wrong. That is true. But since we have learned a lot more about the virus, the experts have been quite good really in understanding how the virus operates. What specific errors are you complaining about? And how can you point to the copious amounts of scientific research that has been engendered by the virus and say “it’s all wrong” – on what basis?

          while the seasonality theorists continue to predict everything that’s happening?

          You mean like this?

          https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7892320/

          Here is one of the experts that you hate actually tackling the seasonality hypothesis with regards to COVID. Does anyone actually deny that COVID like other similar viruses can be influenced by seasonal patterns? But it is simplistic to attribute everything about COVID to this one seasonal model. In the above citation, the seasonality model only explains about half of the transmission.

          Did your “seasonality theorists” tell you this?

        2. So here is an example of “seasonality theorists” (whoever they are) reducing a complex subject into a very simplistic model that is appealing to those who don’t like masks or social restrictions, because the simplistic seasonality model absolves them of any responsibility of having to do anything to stop the spread of the virus. “Oh well, it’s out of my hands, the virus comes and goes with the seasons, nothing to be done about that!” Except that is only part of the story. This is precisely the type of problem that I’m talking about. You are eschewing what the experts say in favor of a guy who tells you an appealing story based on a simplistic model that even a layman can plainly understand.

          1. No I’m looking at the actual data in the actual real world and coming to the obvious conclusion that seasonality trumps anything that we do. That’s how we’re able to tell you what’s going to happen next.

            If the experts were actually experts they would be able to tell us, but they are constantly wrong. They speak as if the rules are what dictates the course of the virus. The data quite clearly demonstrates that is not the case. If they have a theory that is not backed up by the data, they are wrong about their theory.

            That’s why cases didn’t explode when we opened up in the spring.

            1. Elvis,
              Unless you understand the underlying science, the methods and instruments used to collect data what you are commenting on is a table of numbers. Tables of numbers without that information and without the uncertainties in numbers is of low value
              You cannot analyze what you do know understand

              1. Stop projecting your idiocy, lack of education, and need for explanatory authority onto other who do not share your mental impairments you stupid prick.

    2. Technical subjects require technical experts in order to fully understand the subject.

      This isn’t a technical subject: it’s public health policy. This is an interdisciplinary field which requires tradeoffs of competing goods, and different weighting of qualitative values. The technical experts can and should inform, but they cannot dictate. When they do it promotes a reaction against them, especially when those diktats are out of step with the preferences of broad swaths of the public.

      1. The technical experts are informing us, quite strongly, that the vaccines are effective. And yet we have large numbers of people rejecting that information because (1) they are so arrogant that they think that if they watch a few Youtube videos that their opinions ought to carry just as much weight as an expert who has a lifetime of experience in the field; and/or (2) they are hostage to black/white thinking, with the erroneous belief that if the vaccine does not work 100%, then it must be 100% useless; and/or (3) they simply don’t give a shit and won’t lift a finger to help themselves or others until they themselves are in immediate trouble.

        1. Others are not helped by you getting the jab.

          1. His death would help others the most, but the selfish, narcissistic fatass evidently doesn’t care about others.

            1. Could be part of a calorie reallocation program.

          2. Wrong again, That would only be the case of immunity were binary, i.e., 0% or 100%

            1. Not at all, you’re just incredibly fucking stupid and apparently have no better a grasp of probabilities than you do immunity. That aside, we were assured that immunity was pretty fucking close to binary: 95%. Turns out that 2/3 of the people getting hospitalized with COVID are double-vaxxed, and that they carry higher viral load than the unvaccinated. So now we’re having boosters for a vaccine that came out 8 months ago. Turns out getting the jab doesn’t help you or anyone else, and that immunity not only isn’t binary, but isn’t conferred in any meaningful way by the vaccine.

    3. That’s an awful lot of words to wrap up a really simple appeal to authority.

      They say if you can’t dazzle ’em with brilliance, baffle ’em with bullshit. What do you do when you can’t do either?

    4. Give it a rest, dude. There are many proper experts who disagree with the mainstream narrative. And experts get things wrong all the time.

      And no, I’m not going to completely defer everything to experts. It’s not impossible to understand these things for a smart lay person. It would be nice if we could trust the experts, but the ones we are told we must listen to now have lost all credibility.

  50. The evidence that “masks” work is a joke. As a former research chemist who spent years working in virology/cancer field, I’ve not seen one and I mean one “mask” study that had a null group (comparison group with no mask). Unlike Physics, where you control a test in a laboratory, this isn’t easy and you can’t isolate other factors but you can statistically get a good idea on what is going on..and so far looking ta country versus country or even State versus itself over time you just don’t see any evidence masks work..outside for sure and inside likely.

    The issue here isn’t people don’t understand science, many of my friends who disagree with masks and question social distancing are hard science and engineering majors not the f’ing typical NYC woke liberal art Ivy League elites who honestly never go past a freshman chemistry or physics class.

    The issue is govt has to look like it is in control. Govt sells security, certainty, and being “in charge” and when they screw things up and honestly don’t know what is going on like with Covid they don’t want panic and have to give the illusion of knowing..hence the idiotic mask and social distancing fear mongering…

    Lastly only the woke libertarians care what the bolshevik NYT says anyway..they are still denying the slaughter of Ukrainian christian peasants at the hands of Troytsky and the lynching of Italian Americans in New Orleans..its a pos rag and always has been.

    1. People going out of their way to spread a deadly disease doesn’t help end the deadly disease either.

      You people have been reduced to demanding absolute freedom for yourselves no matter how many other people it kills. You’re a parody of yourselves. You’ve stopped thinking entirely.

      1. You didn’t address what he said at all.

      2. Failing to comply with nonsensical lifestyle restrictions not supported by science or experience is not “going out of your way to spread a deadly disease”.

        Fucking another man up his ass when you know that you are an HIV infected faggot, on the other hand, *is* going out of your way to spread a deadly disease.

        The former is presently illegal and punishable by summary execution by police, starvation for lack of access to basic food necessities, or death by withholding of medical care. The latter was recently legalized because criminalizing the deliberate, willful and knowing exposure of one’s sex partner to a deadly disease with no cure was considered discriminatory against faggots.

        I can sleep at night just fine secure in the knowledge that, never having contracted COVID-19 infection, I have not spread it to anyone else by failing to carry around a device that St. Fauci once described as a talisman. Even if I knew I were positive for COVID-19 and had gone about my business in public without carrying around a device that St. Fauci once described as a talisman, I would sleep at night just fine secure in the knowledge that everyone else is responsible for mitigating their risk to endemic environmental pathogens and at most I have exposed them to an approximately 1 in 1,000 chance of being hospitalized and a 1 in 10,000 chance of death. I would have exposed more people to a much, much higher probability of injury or death by driving to the pharmacy to pick up some vitamin C, zinc and cold medication than by walking through the aisles with my face uncovered.

        How about you, Tones? Do you sleep well at night sticking your AIDS-infested cock into another man’s rectum without alerting him to the fact that you will be exposing him to a virus that causes a disease with no cure?

      3. Tony, you’ve lost it. Everything you say now is beyond ridiculous.

  51. There is medical science and there is public health policy. They are not the same. One seeks the truth and the other seeks to manipulate the public in order to achieve a policy goal.

    The fucktard known as Fauci is conducting health policy manipulation as if it were the 1960s – when nobody had access to information. People today can check Fauci’s utterances almost immediately. Because of this, they know quickly when the health policy is bullshit. A great example is downplaying of cheap prophylaxis drugs like Ivermectin in lieu of vaccinations – when clearly we need both.

    “Follow the science” is non-think with Covid.

    1. Are you still confused about whether there’s a virus or what?

      What’s so hard to understand? How has Fauci confused you?

      1. You seem confused. He didn’t say there was no virus.

        1. I don’t understand what the problem is. If someone is confused about what to do, I’ve just told them. Failing that, the CDC has done so. It’s pretty simple in the grand scheme of things.

          1. That’s exactly why I refuse to shake hands with homosexual men. Dr. Fauci assured me in 1983 that household contacts could spread AIDS. I don’t understand what the problem is. If you don’t know what do about AIDS, I’ve just told you. Failing that, the CDC has done so. It’s pretty simple in the grand scheme of things.

            1. So you go out of your way to be ignorant of things or what?

      2. Dude, there is always a virus. How do you connect “there is a virus” to “it’s now OK to ignor the rights of anyone at any time because there is a virus”.

  52. It is completely true that Americans, especially Rs do not understand science. Just look at the comment section here, they can not comprehend that science is different then politics.

    1. Needz moar adverbs.

    2. “especially Rs do not understand science”
      I cannot tell you about Congress under the Orange Clown. But R’s have historically been more supportive than D’s of fundamental science. The preference of the Ds has been for so-called applied science such as funding Solyndra

    3. they can not comprehend that science is different then politics.

      Tell us again how race riots are necessary for public health but protesting being placed on house arrest without due process is murderously irresponsible you fucking clown.

      Stick to raping children and posting child pornography, shreek. You’re not good at anything else.

  53. You’re blaming imperfect pronouncements from government and science during the rapid onset of a novel deadly virus around the world. There’s also an entire political party and its media empire feeding vaccine skepticism and COVID nihilism every day, all day, for either cynical partisan reasons or as a result of a radicalism gotten completely out of control.

    If you’re blaming your own ignorance on scientists, then you need to read more. Most of us understand the simple math. Take the vaccine and shut the fuck up.

    You take no personal responsibility for your duty to protect other human beings from dying, and you take no personal responsibility for your ignorance.

    Tomorrow: you all lecture poor people about personal responsibility.

      1. You say all scientists are in a conspiracy to piss you off, yet you drive over bridges without a care in the world.

        1. Federal government scientists didn’t design the bridges. Structural engineers did. I like the structural engineers I work with.

          Care to get anything else wrong?

          1. Far be it from me to confuse engineers with scientists.

            1. Words can be confusing.

              1. So it’s just specific types of scientists during politically charged moments who are in a conspiracy against you?

                1. When people say one thing but act in opposition to what they are saying, the words become meaningless.

                  1. Ah, the old “someone was a hypocrite, therefore I get to decide what facts are” argument.

                    1. Ah, the old “my team is caught lying again but I will still push the lies as facts” defense.

                    2. So all the scientists ARE lying to you because… conspiracy? Fluoridation? Something something freedumb?

                    3. What about fluoridation? I don’t believe it is a conspiracy per se other than gravitas and ignorance.

    1. There’s also an entire political party and its media empire feeding vaccine skepticism and COVID nihilism every day, all day, for either cynical partisan reasons or as a result of a radicalism gotten completely out of control.

      Trump just got booed at his own rally for telling his supporters, as he has been since last December, to get vaccinated. Perhaps some day the scientists will come up with a narrative you can peddle that isn’t self-defeating.

      You’re certainly right about one thing though: We should never hold public health bureaucrats accountable for saying demonstrably false things during the outbreak of a novel and deadly virus. For example, no one ever blamed Dr. Fauci for claiming that AIDS was transmissible through simple skin contact and preventing AIDS patients from accessing experimental treatments. Do you know why? Because you can never fault someone for coming to an incorrect conclusion IN THE MIDDLE OF THE RAPID ONSET OF A NOVEL DEADLY VIRUS!

    2. Observe that in Tony’s socialist world the Communivirus sprang full grown from the forehead of Communist China without the existence of a single biological warfare laboratory. In his adversaries’ nationalsocialist world, Creation Science and girl-bullying goood, experimental science and hypothesis testing baaad. But neither the socialist or fascist looters who flock here to spew coercion have any inkling of individual rights.

    3. We do not have a duty to do everything we possibly can to keep other humans from dying. That’s just absurd. Try thinking that one through and it should be pretty obvious why.

  54. They lost my confidence when they said the virus was not in danger of spreading much at BLM rallies but was a super-spreader event at a Trump rally. I thought about why that could be true for about 2 seconds, re-read the the article to make sure that was what they were saying, thought about 2 second more and said, “Nope, I’m done listening to the ‘experts’.”

    1. Aren’t you in danger of only listening to people who are explicitly not experts then?

      1. I only follow Super Scientists. They have been issued uniforms with SS on the shoulder for easy recognition.

        1. You follow Facebook feeds and talk radio shock jocks instead of the world’s finest experts on the subject at the CDC.

          You’re never going to admit how stupid you’re being because it would feel too bad. If only we could subtract shame from our emotional vocabulary, we’d all be much better rational thinkers.

          1. I don’t listen to the radio and do not have Facebook. I also used to work at a state CDC where I won some awards despite being a vocal libertarian. Eventually I graduated and couldn’t be happier.

            Care to get anything else wrong?

            1. I can see how it would be unlibertarian to concern yourself with the economics of a global pandemic. To me, that’s simply a foundational problem with libertarianism, much like every other natural disaster and the existence of children.

              But being a self-obsessed know-it-all certainly doesn’t preclude taking a vaccine to protect yourself and fellow homesteaders. Hey, they were developed by evil megacorporations. What’s not to like?

              1. Worldwide global pandemic affecting the entire planet. Needz moar adjectives.

                1. Are you criticizing me for bad prose you are suggesting I might have written but didn’t?

                  A pandemic need only spread to multiple countries. Hence the clarity of “global.”

                  But I do appreciate your appreciation for verbal parsimony.

                  1. It should be in bold and italicized too. If only larger fonts were available. Maybe colors too.

                    1. Some of my authors like the bold-italic-underline for maximum emphasis. I believe the Chicago Manual says of it, “use sparingly.”

                    2. A pile of crap that is underlined is merely an underlined pile of crap.

          2. Tony is absolutely right here. You are succumbing to the same fatal mistake that AIDS activists made in the 1980s. Instead of following the established science, established by the established experts at the CDC, AIDS activists instead mindlessly ranted and raved, took the streets, and even held a “die in” protest on the very steps of the CDC where the established expert scientists were establishing expert science on HIV/AIDS. All because they were riled up by know-nothing pamphleteers and homeless intravenous drug users. And do you know who their whipping boy was? Then just as now, it was the selfless public servant and immunology expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci. BELIEVE THE EXPERTS!

    2. the virus was not in danger of spreading much at BLM rallies

      WHO said that? Provide a quote. Because that is a complete distortion of what was actually said.

      1. Jesus fuck you are dishonest. The cops would break up any gathering that wasn’t blm.

        1. The cops were unfairly deferential in favor of anti-cop protests? When did cops get so reflective?

          1. Do you deny that that is what happened?

            1. Do you expect a shred of honesty from that lying pile of lefty shit?

            2. I remember seeing a lot of violence and tear gas coming from cops toward BLM protesters.

              I also remember seeing cops open the Capitol doors for neo-Nazi insurrectionists.

              As a logical proposition alone, cops favoring anti-cop protests is wanting.

              1. neo-Nazi insurrectionists

                Nevermind. You are an idiot. I bet you think you are being clever.

              2. I don’t remember shitstain ever being honest.

      2. WHO said that? Provide a quote.

        OK

        #BLM Protests Temporarily Reduced COVID Spread, Study Finds

        “I think there’s a stark difference between [the Black Lives Matter] protests, where there’s an explicit messaging around social distancing and masks, and the anti-lockdown protests, which were explicitly against the public health measures — they encouraged people not to wear masks and not to social distance. That intentional messaging does matter,” Buckee said.

        Gee, that sure was easy. Anything else I can help you with, you halfwitted sack of cunt mucus?

      3. “the virus was not in danger of spreading much at BLM rallies”

        True. They didn’t say that, exaclty, what they said was that the cause was more important than any COVID risks associated with the protests, because *those* protests were important. Other protests, e.g., protests against government overreach, were not important and those should be shut down due to COVID concerns.

        Thus: ignore what we say about the dangers of COVID, because the politics we espouse override those dangers. How bad could the danger be if the people tellign us how bad they are can ignore them for protests they believe in?

        That last bit in the quotes below “This should not be confused with a permissive stance on all gatherings, particularly protests against stay-home orders.” sounds suspiciously similar to “To be clear, this is not to suggest that in similar circumstances, a person who engaged in this activity would face no consequences. To the contrary, those individuals are often subject to security or administrative sanctions. But that is not what we are deciding now.”

        Over 1,000 health professionals sign a letter saying, Don’t shut down protests using coronavirus concerns as an excuse [CNN headline]

        “We created the letter in response to emerging narratives that seemed to malign demonstrations as risky for the public health because of Covid-19,” according to the letter writers, many of whom are part of the University of Washington’s Division of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

        “Instead, we wanted to present a narrative that prioritizes opposition to racism as vital to the public health, including the epidemic response. We believe that the way forward is not to suppress protests in the name of public health but to respond to protesters demands in the name of public health, thereby addressing multiple public health crises.”

        “Staying at home, social distancing, and public masking are effective at minimizing the spread of COVID-19. To the extent possible, we support the application of these public health best practices during demonstrations that call attention to the pervasive lethal force of white supremacy,” the letter says.

        “However, as public health advocates, we do not condemn these gatherings as risky for COVID-19 transmission. We support them as vital to the national public health and to the threatened health specifically of Black people in the United States. We can show that support by facilitating safest protesting practices without detracting from demonstrators’ ability to gather and demand change. This should not be confused with a permissive stance on all gatherings, particularly protests against stay-home orders.”

        1. Your complaints are from a news cycle that’s over a year old.

          Progressives were imperfect on social distancing.

          Conservatives openly flouted social distancing at every opportunity and are still doing so.

          Clearly progressives are worse for being hypocrites.

          THIS IS NOT LOGIC.

          1. “Progressives were imperfect on social distancing.”

            Shitstain can’t seem to spell “hypocrites”, but shitstain is never honest.

          2. Jesus christ! Yeah, it’s a year old BECUASE THE INCIDENTS UNDER DISCUSSION HAPPENED A YEAR AGO. The topic was that scientists and experts blew their credibility when the supported the BLM protests despite the COVID dangers. So yeah, since that was a year ago, the evidence that they in fact gave up their credibility when they said that BLM protests are more important than COVID precautions (but hey, other kinds of protests are too dangerous to allow!) will also be from a year ago. WTF?

    3. And the fact that the virus could NOT be spread at democrat dinners and fundraisers but COULD be spread at my Thanksgiving dinner pretty much sealed the deal for me. I’d rather listen to my late grandmother’s advice which was get plenty fresh air and sunshine, eat your veggies, and drink plenty of water, and you will stay pretty healthy.

      1. You did say “late” grandmother?

        Was it the polio?

        1. No. She died at the ripe old age of 96, peacefully in her sleep. She had gathered eggs from her hen house that day and watered her flowers so she was active on her last day of life.

          1. Why do we even need a CDC then?

            1. We don’t. Thanks for asking.

      2. Well, they’re all so sophisticated and vaccinated, so there was never any reason to follow guidelines.

  55. I live in San Mateo county. Let us not forget that Morrow was one of the first in the country to impose lockdowns.

    That included closing 1000s of acres of wilderness parks and 100s of miles of largely unused hiking trails, to stop the spread of covid somehow.

    He was one of the first to close schools.

    And all of this continued in San Mateo county for 18 months. Except the parks, which opened again after about 6 months with all kinds of silly rules. Like 1 way trails, and capacity limits.

    The fact that he later acknowledged they don’t know what they’re doing isn’t enough. He should have acknowledged it up front.

    And, we’re right back to mandates. All people, vaccinated or otherwise, must wear masks indoors. He signed onto more restrictions again this summer, despite his dismal failure at controlling the virus last year.

    1. Some insist that the next sand castle they build in the surf won’t be washed away by the waves.

      1. As one of my Twitter friends said, he has a strict “No puppy pee in the house” rule so that he doesn’t have to let the dog out. The policy is rock solid so clearly the puppy is the problem.

  56. https://twitter.com/LeonydusJohnson/status/1430004640599379969?t=AYAAHWvRnvYm-r0CgKsx_A&s=19

    If a man can simply identify as a woman regardless of biological reality, then there is no real reason why a person can’t also identify as vaccinated. There is no reason why “vaccinated person” can’t be a gender identity.

    #TransVaxxedAreVaxxed

  57. Couple informative threads here – the one directly linked below, and the one it quote tweets:

    https://twitter.com/_BarringtonII/status/1429945521448304640?t=SOrl4NULT6tfo0SqUJsaQQ&s=19

    Read this thread.

    “@asoldiersvoice
    My brother Kevin, the only one who enlisted in Marines in my entire family, passed from Covid just now. He was vaccinated and caught it from an unvaccinated person who came to work sick.

    F all you mfers who refuse to get vaccine/wear masks/social distance. You killed my brother.”

    1. Why didn’t her brother socially distance? Was it truly an unvaccinated person? And doesn’t the marines have a protocol for addressing anyone showing up with symptoms?

      1. Pretty sure it’s a fake story.
        One of many that seem to be popping up across social media.
        It’s the holocaust mindset, that exemplifies the left broadly, in the comments that are an issue.

  58. Fuck you, Reason.
    What a boot licking bitch.

    https://twitter.com/robbysoave/status/1429929018720141318?t=ZZQ2RhgKP4Xv7wFHgfbmCA&s=19

    On the streets of DC, it is still common for somewhere between 20-40% (!) of people to wear masks outdoors. It baffles me that this many people are doing something completely pointless and contrary to health guidance.

    People not getting the vaccines are in general making an uninformed choice for themselves. People wearing masks while walking by themselves on the sidewalk are also making an uninformed choice, though!

    1. Thread is nothing but cope and logical fallacies.

    2. Some government employers are mandating that employees wear masks on zoom calls even when they are working from home alone, to “set an example”. There’s not one single scientific reason to wear a mask when home alone, so this is only being done for political reasons, further undercutting the notion that “we’re just following the science!”

      ————————

      In addition to wearing masks while working at DNR facilities or in the field, Natural Resources Secretary Preston Cole told employees they should also wear one while on video conference calls, even if they are home alone.

      “Also, wear your mask, even if you are home, to participate in a virtual meeting that involves being seen — such as on Zoom or another video-conferencing platform — by non-DNR staff,” Cole wrote, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. “Set the safety example which shows you as a DNR public service employee care about the safety and health of others.”

      1. “She also said that the agency is concerned that screen grabs of high-ranking employees not wearing masks could be misconstrued to insinuate that they are not following the governor’s order.

  59. https://twitter.com/9NewsAdel/status/1428642084005818370?t=Nwn3Tpxj6ghMyouHJIVmyA&s=19

    COVID-19 quarantine signage must now be placed on the front doors of homes in South Australia where occupants are isolating for two weeks. @HarveyBiggs #9News [video]

    1. Wouldn’t it be easier to just spray paint the yellow star on their front doors?

      1. Why not just burn the houses down?
        With the unclean locked inside of course

    2. Just shoot them, along with the dogs they’re already shooting.

  60. New York Times health and science reporter Apoorva Mandavilli thinks she has identified the problem: Americans do not understand how the scientific process works.

    But fear not! Apoorva Mandavilli, a journalist with no scientific training or experience is going to femsplain to you how science works!

  61. It seems the reasoning goes something like this:
    1. They (people who disagree with us) don’t understand the science.
    2. Therefore, we can tell them any bullshit we want and they will accept it unquestioningly.

  62. Jacob Sullum has my appreciation for his work and his articles on the pandemic. Brilliant.

  63. Correction —
    Americans Distrust the Government’s COVID-19 Advice Because They Don’t Understand How the Gov-God *religion* Works…

    Now that sounds right.

  64. You could have stopped at “A NYT reporter claims”
    Shorter article but most of us would come to the same conclusion.
    A better article maybe who still thinks the government should be in charge of, well anything.

  65. Easy To Understand

    Those who mistrust governmental pronouncements about CoVID-19 do so for good reason. Those pronouncements are political not scientific.

    Three guidelines in the Scientific Method; namely, specificity, objectivity, and accountability. The politicians and their bureaucratic hacks violate all three all the time.

    Among the sciences, that which is most pertinent for most people most of the time is one about which few even have heard — Biobehavioral Science, about which this commentator has written for decades in both peer-reviewed professional and lay publications.

    https://www.nationonfire.com/biobehavioral-science-2/ .

    “Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you.” -Matthew 7:7

  66. Can Sullum or anyone else at Reason name three drugs the government HASN’T lied about? Americans are not as stupid as the looter press, that’s all.

  67. Did the NYT take Kamala Harris to task for saying people shouldn’t trust the vaccine while Trump was in office?

    1. And the D governors who were going to have the vacc’s independently tested?

      1. He didn’t find the time to get that done, what with sexually harassing his staff.

        1. Plus, Trump lost, so the vaccines magically became just fine with everyone on their side.

  68. The NYT article is extraordinarily disingenuous.

    What has actually happened is that 90% of the scientific effort directed at COVID has been censored in favor of the narrow view promoted by those in power, and that narrow view has changed over time. The 90% have cited the fact that the narrow view has been allowed to change as evidence that their views should not have been censored, and now the NYT is gaslighting its audience into thinking that the 90% don’t believe that real science can change.

  69. I find it funny that a lot of the crowd who protests against allowing people and animals to eat GMO corn all the sudden think getting a shot of genetically-manipulation virus RNA directly into their body is a good idea. Overlaps a lot with the “vaccines cause autism crowd” who are now all shaming people for not getting the COVID jab.

    1. Why don’t you stop worrying about other people and do the rational thing for yourself?

      1. “Why don’t you stop worrying about other people and do the rational thing for yourself?”

        Why don’t you stop worrying about other people and do, and get your nose out of their business, shitstain?

      2. A) I’m not “worrying” about anyone. I’m mocking them.
        B) I’m vaccinated, in deference to my wife’s request due to her 85-year-old mother living with us. It was rational and pragmatic at the time, even though I felt that it was unnecessary and I told her that if I get epstein-barr or a pulmonary clot, I’m going to be very mad at her.

        So STFU, because you’ve no idea.

    2. Overlaps a lot with the “vaccines cause autism crowd” who are now all shaming people for not getting the COVID jab.

      Are they? The crazy anti-vax people I know (who are definitely not Trump supporters) are sticking to their guns and being consistent.

      1. Yeah, I can’t find it now, but I had a list of some anti-vaxers (or at least famous people who made some public anti-vax statements back in the days before COVID) who are now hawking the COVID jab. Oddly, Trump was one of them.

        1. It seems the Scientologist anti-vaxers are mostly holding fast, but some others have gotten their COVID vax.

          Bill Maher was one, but he’s now back to being anti (doesn’t want the booster). Robert de Niro was anti-vax but he said “”It’s unclear what coronavirus will do to the industry,” DeNiro said. “I really hope a vaccine is found and people can feel safe to go to the cinema.

  70. She should understand, writing from a profession that no one trusts.

  71. What’s is there to understand?!? Science is “corrupt”…just like everything else….:)

  72. Covid pandemic hits very hard to all countries. people have to take precautions to control it. The best they can do is take all safety measures.
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  73. The FDA gets 75% of its funding from Pig Pharma. Does that surprise anyone?
    Who knows how much money the CDC receives from the same lot of corrupting bastards?
    Ever hear of Rezulin? If not check this out:
    https://citizenfreepress.com/breaking/whatsherface-knocks-out-the-fda/

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  75. “2 weeks to flatten the curve.”

    The policy goals have quietly shifted over time from keeping our hospitals from being overrun to keeping everyone “safe” to completely eliminating Covid from our society.

    The public health bureaucrats and politicians have admitted to lying about masks and herd immunity and transmission to manipulate people’s behavior. They’ve destroyed businesses and lives and even sued people for going to church. They’ve hidden the damage they’ve caused and tried to censor anyone who dared question them, all the while not following their own arbitrary lockdown rules and exempting their political allies. The CDC allowed teachers unions to write health guidelines for schools!

    In short, they’ve behaved like tyrants acquiring and maintaining more power to micromanage our lives. The Pandemic won’t end because they don’t want it to. They need it. Our corporate overlords are all too happy to play along, too. They’ve repeatedly made terrible decisions out of fear rather than science, claiming that a lack of information about Covid justifies their tyranny. Now they’re mandating we take experimental vaccines just so we can go to the supermarket and all so we don’t get mild flu symptoms.

    Instead of taking responsibility for their own repeated blunders, they blame the people who don’t trust them. Only in rare occasions have our leaders simply provided the best available information and allowed us to decide for ourselves what our personal risk tolerance is. Those leaders have been crucified by the statist media that has pushed the fearmongering message. The collective wisdom of the hundreds of millions of Americans about their own risk tolerance dwarfs that of any health agency. It’s not even a contest.

    The best possible way to say it is that our public health establishment has not covered itself in glory. In reality, they’ve been a complete disgrace and un-American.

  76. The job of the public health bureaucracy is to pass along the recommendations/orders of the senior public health authority. That authority is either A. Fauci, the CDC director, the President, or the Governor, depending on who you ask. If we were in Medieval England the public health bureaucracy would be passing along the instructions of King Henry VIII. If for some reason the CDC director said the moon is made of green cheese then half of us would be swearing that as we look at the moon we can plainly see that it’s made of green cheese.

  77. On another board, where I am on long-standing threads about COVID, and people are very well educated- both through brick and mortar institutions and through self-education, hardly anyone trusts the CDC, FDA, etc. And everyone is getting the vaccines, masking, etc but not masking outside when not in crowds, using effective masks- i.e. N95, KN95, or very close equivalents and we were doing it when CDC said don’t wear masks- early March 2020, and started again when Delta came around. I listened to the entire CDC meeting on third shots for people like me who are moderately immunocompromised or severely immunocompromised. It did not give me great optimism in waiting to hear what the CDC says. I will actually follow science and know that respiratory viruses are almost exclusively airborne and over-spraying, over-wiping is just hygiene theater when it comes to COVID. Apparently, all of us Moms were far more prescient than Abbott Labs which destroyed tons of Binax covid home test kits right before everyone wanted them. We all knew Delta was coming and it would be bad. Unlike Abbott, CDC, etc, we pay attention to what is happening elsewhere in the world and how it is likely to affect us. No, we aren’t anti-science, we are anti-bureaucracy.

  78. Tens of millions of Americans can’t afford to visit a doctor to ask questions about covid vaccinations or even for routine checkups. so they reach out to the Internet for medical advice and what’s n the internet is not always reliable. Unfortunately for the health of our nation, much Internet covid info has been politicized where getting vaccinated is synonymous with a police state controlling our lives so people resist vaccinations resulting in deaths. The American medical system or should I say the lack of a medical system is partially responsible for the huge unnecessary death toll.

  79. Most of the people with signs on their lawns saying “we believe science is real” couldn’t tell you the difference between an ion and an isotope to save their lives, and if you asked them about the current replication crisis in the scientific community, they’d look at you like a deer caught in the headlights. For 80% of the population, “science” is just a magic word talisman that lends artificial weight to the pronouncements of those in authority.

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