Coronavirus

Two Years To Slow the Spread

Government can't stop moving the COVID-19 goal posts.

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On December 6, 2021, in his last major act as mayor of New York City, Democrat Bill de Blasio announced that, to stop the spread of the omicron variant of COVID-19, all 184,000 private businesses in the city would henceforth be commanded to enforce vaccine mandates on their employees, and all children ages 5 and up (including tourists from countries that hadn't yet approved pediatric vaccines) would need to show proof of full immunization before entering most indoor venues.

"Look at a country like Germany right now—shutdowns, restrictions," de Blasio explained in a follow-up interview. "We cannot let that happen. So we had to take decisive action."

Five days later, as the Northeast was experiencing a third consecutive winter surge of coronavirus cases, Democratic Gov. Kathy Hochul announced that all businesses in New York would be required to ensure their employees and customers were either provably vaccinated or masked indoors at all times; each violation would be subject to a $1,000 fine. The new rules were applicable through January 15, "after which the State will re-evaluate based on current conditions."

Hochul's announcement came almost six months to the day after her predecessor, Andrew Cuomo, had lifted almost all statewide COVID restrictions, including most indoor masking, on the occasion of New York meeting the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) target of having 70 percent of adults receive at least one vaccination dose. "We can now return to life as we know it," Cuomo crowed then. By the time of Hochul's reversal, the one-shot rate among adult New Yorkers had risen to 93 percent.

The goal posts on pandemic policy haven't just been shifted, they've been uprooted, hitched to a helicopter, and transported to a different county. Joe Biden as president-elect on December 4, 2020, said, "I don't think [vaccines] should be mandatory." His spokeswoman Jen Psaki on July 23, 2021, added, "That's not the role of the federal government." CDC Director Rochelle Walensky stated unequivocally on July 31 that "there will be no federal mandate."

Biden announced a federal vaccine mandate on private employers with 100 or more workers five weeks later.

"I've tried everything in my power to get people vaccinated," the president maintained. "But even after all those efforts, we still had more than a quarter of people in the United States who were eligible for vaccinations but didn't get the shot….So, while I didn't race to do it right away, that's why I've had to move toward requirements." Look at what you made him do.

It was easier to make fun of presidential dissembling about pandemic policy back when Donald Trump was holding extemporaneous bull sessions about COVID every day on the White House lawn, or when he infamously unveiled on March 16, 2020, a bullet-pointed presentation titled "15 Days to Slow the Spread." Even factoring in hindsight bias, that was an absurdly irresponsible prediction to make about a virus already ripping through every continent at a time when testing (especially in the U.S.) was woefully inadequate.

But Trump back then, like his then-lionized, now-disgraced rival Cuomo, was operating in an environment exponentially more impoverished, in terms of both knowledge and mitigation strategies, than what public officials enjoy now. The one-shot vaccination rate for American adults was not 86 percent (as it is as this magazine goes to press) but 0 percent. We were still being reminded to wash our hands several times a day for 20 seconds at a time and implored to studiously avoid touching our faces. And perhaps because the idea of government dictating most human activity outside the home was then still novel, politicians tended to tether restrictions to specific metrics. (Cuomo's "flatten the curve" mantra referred to the trajectory of hospitalizations vs. the hard number of hospital beds.) Immediate-term discomforts were routinely sold with visions of long-term relief.

"If everyone makes…these critical changes and sacrifices now," Trump said on "Slow the Spread" day, as a phalanx of top public health officials looked on, "we will rally together as one nation, and we will defeat the virus, and we're going to have a big celebration all together. With several weeks of focused action, we can turn the corner and turn it quickly."

As the families of 800,000 dead Americans can grimly attest, no such corners were ever turned. Yet what has replaced those naive and prematurely optimistic projections is something no less cruel.

Benchmarks for lifting restrictions have been serially rewritten or quietly dropped, often with little explanation. Major policy promises have been made and broken within the same week. And you can't just blame the capriciousness on the shifting viral facts on the ground—bureaucrats have been agonizingly slow to recognize advances in knowledge that support policy loosening yet lightning-fast when reacting to any new source of fear. It took the Biden administration and his fellow Democrats in New York no time at all to put the clampdown on the omicron variant, but it took the CDC and most coastal state governments more than a year to internalize that people are not catching COVID-19 outdoors.

By making a zig-zagging series of arbitrary and far-reaching edicts, officials have squandered public trust in allegedly neutral scientific institutions and effectively abandoned persuasion for coercion. Instead of a light at the end of the tunnel—or even endemic coping at the end of pandemic panic—we're being offered a future of politicians reluctantly handing out a carrot or two before reaching once again for the stick.

The 1-2 Punch in the Mouth

"Everybody has a plan," former heavyweight boxer Mike Tyson famously said, "until they get punched in the mouth." Not only did COVID-19 punch millions of people in the mouth, but government reaction to the virus proved a second blow from which scores of millions of businesses and families have been painfully slow to recover.

In December 2020, Gavin Newsom, California's Democratic governor, banned outdoor dining in regions where available hospital ICU capacity was below 15 percent. A judge opined (accurately) within a week that the policy was "not grounded in science, evidence, or logic." Newsom then rescinded the order seven weeks later without the threshold having been met in most of the state.

De Blasio shut down New York City public schools in November 2020 because the rate of positive tests among all New Yorkers had risen above 3 percent, even though that community spread threshold was far below those recommended by international health authorities, and weekly tests inside school buildings were showing a miniscule positivity rate of 0.18 percent. The mayor removed that consideration for elementary schools 10 days later and for middle schools and high schools four months later. Science!

Imagine being a landlord during the past two years. First, COVID suddenly increases the chances that your tenants will be unable to pay their rent and prompts millions of renegotiated leases. Then, six months later, the Trump administration makes the absurd and facially unconstitutional decision to put the CDC in charge of enforcing a federal moratorium on evictions. Set aside for a moment that gross violation of property rights, and visualize instead what it must have been like to try to make any plan at all about residential real estate.

On June 24, 2021, the CDC made what it described as "the final extension of the moratorium," pushing it out to July 31. At an August 2 White House press briefing, Psaki announced that "CDC Director Rochelle Walensky and her team have been unable to find legal authority for a new, targeted eviction moratorium." Literally the next day, the CDC announced a new, targeted eviction moratorium covering 90 percent of the country. (The Supreme Court would at the end of month swat that reversal down.)

With the exception of the occasional court ruling, governmental bodies have largely given up on the idea that there is any limiting principle to their vast new pandemic powers. Relatedly, they no longer sell today's restrictions as a ticket to tomorrow's freedoms. Whenever a new wave forms, politicians brace constituents for a quick slap now to put off yet another mouth-punch later.

Hochul portrayed her December mask-and-vaccine crackdown as a way to "prevent business disruption"; de Blasio sold his new mandates by saying, "We cannot let those restrictions come back. We cannot have shutdowns here in New York City. We've got to keep moving forward."

Vaccinations have helped decouple infections from hospitalization and death, especially with the more infectious but less lethal omicron variant. Yet elites kept focusing on case rates instead of serious illness, sowing panic and clampdowns in the process. "Massachusetts is the most vaccinated state in the country and yet here we are in a surge of COVID that is just as bad as where we were last year at this point," University of Massachusetts Memorial Health Care President Eric Dickson said in an NBC Nightly News scare story in December. At the time of Dickson's startling claim, the Bay State's seven-day average of deaths was 17, compared to 51 the year before.

All of which contributes to the suspicion that governmental interventions will just stretch out forever. "It is good policy and practice to establish off-ramps for interventions that aren't meant to be permanent," Johns Hopkins epidemiologist Jennifer Nuzzo wrote in November 2021. "We should be able to answer what conditions would enable an end."

But politicians and public health officials, particularly in Democratic-controlled institutions, are increasingly unable to spell out any such conditions. For them there is no end in sight.

Ripping the Mask Off

The first vaccine shots for 5- to 11-year-olds were made available November 3. On November 5 came reports that a new therapeutic from Pfizer preliminarily demonstrated a remarkable ability to prevent serious illness and death in people already sick from COVID. That same day, Walensky chose to release an "Ask the Expert" video replying to the question, "Why do I still need to wear a mask?"

"The evidence is clear," responded the country's highest-ranking public health scientist. "Masks can help prevent the spread of COVID-19 by reducing your chance of infection by more than 80 percent, whether it's an infection from the flu, from the coronavirus, or even just the common cold. In combination with other steps, like getting your vaccination, hand washing, and keeping physical distance, wearing your mask is an important step you can take to keep us all healthy."

It was a breathtakingly irresponsible remark.

For two years, as the country has engaged in bitterly partisan and intensely moralistic debates over nonpharmaceutical interventions (NPIs)—masking, social distancing, business closures—the single greatest difference maker by far in blunting the lethal impact of the virus has been vaccination. Unvaccinated Americans were 10 to 20 times more likely to die from COVID-19 in fall 2021 than those who had received their shots.

Yet here was Walensky, the very week immunization became available to most elementary school kids, putting vaccination on the same list as the mostly (and rightfully) forgotten NPIs of hand washing and social distancing, in order to counteract any possible erosion in support for a far inferior NPI. By relegating the vaccine to the status of an afterthought, not only did the CDC director snuff out hope among many parents that their children's masks will ever come off, but she also butchered the science.

There does not exist a study showing masks to reduce wearers' COVID infectiousness by anything close to 80 percent. In fact, most studies conducted at that time had not even found the vaccines to be 80 percent effective at stopping transmission in the delta era (although they did better at stopping symptomatic cases and hospitalizations). Choosing the arrival of pediatric vaccines as an opportunity to greatly exaggerate the effectiveness of face coverings sent the implicit message to parents that no amount of compliance will free their kids from masks.

In a tweet promoting the video, Walensky touted the non-COVID virtues of wearing face coverings forever. "Masks," she wrote, "also help protect from other illnesses like common cold and flu." There was a time when having a smiling government doctor suggest open-ended masking for cold and flu seasons would have been seen as too implausibly authoritarian.

Yet when the CDC talks, governments in the kinds of places where people have "In this house, we believe in science" yard signs tend to rubber-stamp the recommendations. As of mid-December, 15 states had mask mandates for K-12 schools; all 15 voted for Biden in November 2020. (The two states with also problematic school-mask-mandate bans both voted for Trump.) In New York, children 2 and older are required by law to wear masks all day long in any public or private school or daycare setting, despite being in the age cohort with the lowest COVID hospitalization rate, and despite the fact that their teachers must be vaccinated by law. (The vaccinated Hochul, who at age 63 is much more vulnerable to COVID than is an unvaccinated 4-year-old, has infuriated her critics by appearing in countless social media photos indoors, amid crowds, unmasked.)

Colorado, a purple state with a libertarian-leaning Democratic governor, has taken a considerably different approach. "There was a time when there was no vaccine, and masks were all we had, and we needed to wear them," Democratic Gov. Jared Polis told Colorado Public Radio in December. "The truth is we now have highly effective vaccines that work far better than masks. If you wear a mask, it does decrease your risk of getting COVID, and that's a good thing to do indoors around others. But if you get COVID and you are still unvaccinated, the case is just as bad as if you were not wearing a mask. Everybody had more than enough opportunity to get vaccinated….At this point, if you haven't been vaccinated, it's really your own darn fault." Was that so hard?

For the rest of the country, the scenes playing out in restrictionist states look alien, dystopian: kids shivering while eating lunch outside in frigid Portland, Oregon; high schoolers in New York City (where the positive COVID rate among regularly tested unvaccinated kids was less than 0.3 percent this fall) still holding debate tournaments on Zoom; glum TV commercials warning parents that "without the vaccine, when your child's teammates take the field, they'll miss out. Or when their friends go off to the movies, a concert, or get a bite to eat, your teen will miss out."

Asked about some of those images in December, White House spokeswoman Psaki replied, "I will tell you, I have a 3-year-old who goes to school, sits outside for snacks and lunch, wears a mask inside, and it's no big deal to him….These are steps that schools are taking to keep kids safe."

Yet the evidence that Psaki's kid is actually safer because of such precautions has proven damnably difficult for the CDC to produce. America's school masking guidance is a global outlier—the World Health Organization recommends against masking children aged 5 and younger, and only a handful of countries in the European Union were masking elementary school students in fall 2021. In trying to persuade the public that it's actually rational and prudent, the country's public health agency has never once cited a masking study that included a meaningful control group. Officials are operating on intuition, and as a result tens of millions of children are degrading their physical comfort, social development, and language acquisition. All to avoid contracting and spreading a virus they are far less susceptible to than are vaccinated adults.

Misrepresenting science to produce a preferred policy outcome is a terrible way to build trust during a pandemic. Adding to that sense of suspicion is the fact that the CDC at the beginning of the pandemic actively downplayed the effectiveness of masks, out of worry that scared consumers would hoard the then-scarce supply of medical-quality protective equipment needed by doctors and nurses. "Seriously people—STOP BUYING MASKS!" tweeted then–Surgeon General Jerome Adams on February 29, 2020. "They are NOT effective in preventing [the] general public from catching #Coronavirus, but if healthcare providers can't get them to care for sick patients, it puts them and our communities at risk!"

The Biden administration was supposed to bring more scientific rigor into the building, yet Walensky has repeatedly massaged research findings to fit her policy desires for Americans to be swathed in real and metaphorical prophylactics. The CDC dropped its guidance for outdoor masking only in April 2021, and even then only among vaccinated people. The moderately populated state of Washington, with its spectacular forests, coastline, and mountains, still has an outdoor mask requirement.

As America braced for the omicron wave before Christmas, the blue-state mandates started to emerge: vaccine passports for Philadelphia, booster-shot requirements at several elite universities, a renewed indoor mask mandate in California. "The imperative is to get through this winter surge," Newsom said. "And to do so in a way where we come out the other side and we have a chance to reevaluate."

Schools in heavily Democratic districts—Cleveland, Ohio; Newark, New Jersey; West Chicago, Illinois; Prince George's County, Maryland—preemptively responded to the omicron surge after Christmas break by once again shifting to remote-only learning. At the Brooklyn elementary school that my first-grader is zoned for, teachers staged a post-break sickout that precipitated a last-minute closure. "We are demanding," they wrote in a letter to outraged parents, "the city and our union take…actions to stop the spread."

So just a few more weeks to stop the spread. Or months. Or years.

NEXT: Brickbat: Freeze Frame

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  1. I guess it's no longer Wild Baseless Disinformation Conspiracy Theory Dangerous To Our Democracy to point this out.

    1. Saturday Night Live did a skit last Saturday making fun of COVID sheeple, so now it's officially OK to notice the emporer is naked. And to claim you knew it all along. We have always been at war with Eastasia.

      1. I said it elsewhere. I hope that progressives will start trying to gaslight us into thinking they always knew the restrictions were BS.

        They'll never admit they were wrong, it's politically untenable as the current zeitgeist brands that as "weak" for a politician. The Science™ can only change their minds when they think it is useful for their preferred worldview, but now that the political winds are shifting they aren't getting the spike from making voters cynical of masks and shutdowns the "other" to blame. They have to do SOMETHING, so, SNL style gaslighting.

        1. I'm currently seeing some Branch Covidians pivot to, "Well, what about the millions of immuno-compromised people?" There's no hope for those assholes and they won't change their tune unless they're told directly to do so by their Democrat leash-holders.

          Some with more sense are indeed starting the rationalizations, such as "Well, we're doing the best we can with the information we have" cope.

          1. Yes. I see that too. It has the emotional appeal of helping those poor people who can't help themselves that those sorts like, and when I see it in news media it is always presented as a counter argument given equal or greater weight than, you know, actual data.

            The data say tough shit. My masking doesn't affect you, regardless of your particular health concerns. Being immunocompromised sucks. It has always sucked, it will always suck, and my saying so doesn't mean I have no empathy. Just that I don't want to do something ineffective to soothe the fears of societies hypochondriacs and germophobes.

            Doing something ineffective to sooth a fear is how we've gotten the TSA gate raping us and constantly making travel more difficult and humiliating over the last 20 years. Now is the moment for masks, and I fear allowing that sort of thing to happen a moment longer will mean those people have control "for the " for the rest of my life.

    2. But Twitter might still ban you for posting it if you don't also list your pronouns, just for old times sake.

  2. Fuck Joe Biden

    1. Fuck Joe Biden

      1. Fuck Joe Biden

        1. Fuck Joe Biden.

    2. Your impotence is duly noted. Now go JO to Trump's poster with no shirt.

      1. Fuck Joe Friday and Joe Biden

      2. Once again, you and your ilk are the only people talking about Trump.

        1. were...the only ones.

          The RINOS just got their asses kicked at CPAC...if I quoted that correctly...

          Hes Back.

          Enjoy the meltdown.

        2. You're the only ones with his poster and the hats.

          Load him up again. He's 2 for 2 in losing the popular vote by millions and was lucky the EC fell for him the 1st time.

          Are you feeling lucky punks?

          1. Well since all of your up to now narratives have been debunked, I guess this is about all you have left; trolling insults and distraction.

          2. Are you feeling lucky punks?

            Unmask your email and you can find out personally, shitlib.

          3. I understand the current political climate makes you very very angry and your impotent wailing is truly entertaining. I hope to see you here for the midterms.

  3. I was twice arrested and Baker Acted for no mask/Vaccine. #CoronaFraud destroyed my life.

    I am #Unmasked for 2 years.
    I am #Unvaccinated for 2 years.
    I am #Untested for 2 years.
    I am #Unemployed for two years.

    I worked in sewers from March to July 2020 with no mask. Nobody got sick. Nobody died. Tampa Bay to Port Charlotte in Florida.

    James 1:8
    A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.

    Spiritual Carnal
    Heavenly Worldly
    Eden Babylon

    All my life, war was in between my ears.
    I always knew something was right.
    I never knew there truly was a facade on earth.
    Family, friends, & Church said go with the flow.
    Get an education, get married, get a career, raise a family, settle down, grow roots, & live happily ever after.

    JESUS said follow ME, lose your life, deny self, & love not the world.

    Now, all things are coming to the ultimate climax in Revelation. Yet, spiritual blindness remains. "Christian" people fail to see, hear, & understand the times.

    My Uncle & Aunt, Mother & Brother are all vaxed, masked, & scared to death of this #CoronaFraud.
    Uncle got double shots, & boosted last year. His cancer blew up in the last 4 months. They have put their faith in Science & Doctors.

    Foolish Galatians & Babylonian Christians won't make it. Lot's Wife did not make it.

    I am persuaded COVID:Certification Of Vaccination Identification. Revelation 6 White Horse, COVID has conquered the world through fear. This is the forerunner to Revelation 13 antichrist beast system.

    To die is to be present with THE LORD. Why be afraid? Tomorrow is not promised. You need a test to tell you that you are sick? Who told you that you are sick? You Trust your Government? The same Government that rebelled against Romans 13 taxes at Boston Tea Party? The same Government that lied & stole from Native Americans? The same Government that Enslaved Africans? The same Government that had Jim Crowe Segration laws? The same Government that killed JFK? The same Government that poisoned it's soldiers with Agent Orange? The same Government that wants to mandate vaccination to be employed?

    #OperationPaperclip
    #OperationMockingbird
    #OperationNorthwoods
    #OperationCHAOS
    #OperationLockstep
    #Event201
    #Agenda21
    #Agenda2030
    #Agenda2050

    Wake-up Ostriches
    Ichabod To The Laodicean satanic 501C3 Church

    “Media companies should commit to ensuring that authoritative messages are prioritized and that false messages are suppressed including through the use of technology” — Event 201

    1. Jesus saves, rebound to Gretzky...HE SCORES!

      1. Oh well done sir!

      2. Jesus Saves...with Bitcoin.

        I think someone missed their Ritalin......

    2. You think the Lib tent is gonna grow from teachers unions?

    3. A beautiful blend of fact, conspiracy, and religion lol.

      Needs a bit more on the corporate technocrats and WEF controlling a lot of this via their ESGs on global corporations.

  4. It's an international pandemic you fucking moron, not the rollout of a new cell phone. Fucking snowflake pussies.

    1. HAHA keep hanging on to it.

    2. The fictional stories of Joseph Friday continue. Today's episode - An International Pandemic, in no way created by a fear based media surge, continues unabated without the endorsement of the Science!

      1. Total dead in the US close to the combined yearly deaths in the US from heart disease and cancer Josey. I know 2 of them, another who almost wished he had died from it after suffering for a month, and I know 2 docs who personally tended to covid patients, one in a big hospital ER and another in the ICUs of 2 smaller hospitals. The unvaxxed are leading the deaths and hospitalizations in both red and blue states, but they are a minority of the population almost everywhere.

        1. no one fucking cares

        2. 3 million people die each year.
          It sucks, but most of us manage to keep going.

          1. Notional death figures released about 2 weeks ago reflect the extra deaths from covid.

            1. The CDC also has been withholding data on Covid since the beginning of the pandemic. You think they're honest now, or massaging some more numbers again?

              Wait, you're a Branch Covidian, so yeah you do.

            2. Yeah, those are reliable numbers.

              Sad that you know 2 people that died of the actual Covid. And one that had it. I know people that have died of other things as they grew old an frail or were caught with conditions while battling another disease. Death comes for us all in one way or another.

              Doesn't make the lies less so and the narrative about the unvaxxed less of a lie. The stats have been skewed to fit the narrative since 2020. You will see more fiction revealed tomorrow evening as the new narrative emerges before the mid terms.

              Hold on fiercely to your beliefs, though Joe. Sprinkle in the anecdotal feels and you may convert another true believer or two.

            3. You're going to die of old age and disease soon, and the human race will be better off for it, you useless fossil.

        3. That sucks, but you still haven't connected the dots. How does that justify a bunch of tyrannical policies that didn't really work? "OMG it's a pandemic" isn't an argument. You need to show that the policies you support are both legal and effective.
          If you are just arguing for vaccination, fine. But you aren't going to convince anyone by calling them stupid idiots or comparing them to children.

          Also, we've been through 3 full seasons of covid now pretty much. You can't just compare that to annual death rates.

          1. Requiring vaccines for certain activities is othing new in America and you almost certainly received them when a kid. The SC ruled that states had an interest in public health and could require them.

            If you think that is tyranny you are complete pussy and snowflake.

            1. "Requiring vaccines for certain activities is othing new in America and you almost certainly received them when a kid."

              Right, and there wasn't a caveat that you were still going to get the mumps, just not as severe. The vaccinations you speak of are actually preventative.

            2. Yum, civil conflict is getting hotter. Yes, forcing experimental "vaccines" and trying to trap people in their homes for two years has taken its toll. Air is getting very thin for democrats and their anger and wailing is indicative of that. Very good.

        4. "Total dead in the US close to the combined yearly deaths in the US from heart disease and cancer Josey."

          First of all, this is untrue. According to CDC, in 2021, some 1.3 Million people died of heart disease and cancer in the US. 350k died of COVID.

          https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/fastats/leading-causes-of-death.htm

          Our country's mortality rate is up, yes. But it is also lower than what it has been through most of history. The 2020 death rate of 835.4 deaths per 100k is still less than any time prior to 2000.

          Back in 1998, when the death rate was 870/100k, people weren't sheltering in place and quivering in fear. They were living life. I'd laugh at the complete disproportionality of Joe's response. But even more hilarious is the fact that Joe continues to cling to these canards even as the most devout of his cult are abandoning him. He would rather go down with the ship on COVID policy than admit how wrong he was, like the rest of the left.

          1. I said complete deaths not yearly you twit. I was claer in my statement and yet still you missed it.

            1. PS Data released about 2 weeks ago confirmed extra - above normaland expected deaths - for the US were up with numbers consistent with recorded covid deaths. Look it up.

              1. I feel your pain, loser.

            2. I said complete deaths not yearly you twit

              People are trying to point out to you that this fact is totally irrelevant. Pointing out that I spent more money fixing my car this decade than I usually spend on groceries in a year tells you nothing about the state of my current finances, or how they've trended.

            3. You compared a cumulative number to an annual average and are mad that people noticed.

            4. You’re not nearly as intelligent as you seem to think you are Asshole Joe.

        5. Dude, you don't get it. If you want to virtue signal to Trump voters you have to say the pandemic never happened. That it's all a big hoax. Like the election. To say otherwise is the same as saying you voted for Biden. Duh.

          1. I'm a slow learner I guess!

            1. Seriously though, I'm on board with those who say government reaction to COVID caused infinitely more harm than the virus itself.

            2. Kill your darlings.

            3. yes you are slow. you have and always will go full retard.

            4. You do strike me as a non-learner, to be honest.

      2. Joe Friday is not nearly as entertaining as Shawn Miller.

        1. You don't like seeing snowflakes scattered?

          1. We get to watch your progressive meltdown, so that's something.

            1. It's so delicious. 😀

    3. 5.5% died OF WuFlu, Barbie Jack.

      When are you going to stop spreading misinformation?

    4. and 2 years later, people are finally realizing that a lot of the actions taken to "do something" did very little.

    5. Poor baby, is nobody taking your Glorious Crusade seriously anymore? Your days as a heroic Covid Commando coming to an end? No more "just like D-Day!"

      Don't be too sad. If you really need to do some more virtue signaling to give your life meaning, you could always get an expensive bottle of vodka and make a TikTok of yourself pouring it down the drain. It would be weapons-grade stupid but think of all the Social Credit points you'll get!

  5. At least the democrat party has openly admitted their goal is the destruction of America, and democracy.
    How many days to the next election?

  6. It's not that we learned new things about masks being ineffective. We always knew that. There's been studies (real science!) going back fifty years proving that they are useless against respiratory infections. The moment it became convenient, the Top Men simply forgot, and on the jackboots went; and then everyone clapped because they hadn't had a good boot print on their face in a few generations.

    1. It was " nothing can be done besides masks" and Control Freaks will Freak bc thats what they do.

      All or None is poor policy.

      So the hyper focused idiots claimed the Jesus Mask as our Personal Saviour and here we are.

  7. When the public demands politicians "Do Something!" Politicians will obey. Whether or not what they do is actually effective is another matter.

    1. Bingo. The value of the masks were primarily psychological.

      1. Which was something known and specifically pointed out in April 2020 by the <a href=“ https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/nejmp2006372”.

        It is also clear that masks serve symbolic roles. Masks are not only tools, they are also talismans that may help increase health care workers’ perceived sense of safety, well-being, and trust in their hospitals. Although such reactions may not be strictly logical, we are all subject to fear and anxiety, especially during times of crisis. One might argue that fear and anxiety are better countered with data and education than with a marginally beneficial mask, particularly in light of the worldwide mask shortage, but it is difficult to get clinicians to hear this message in the heat of the current crisis. Expanded masking protocols’ greatest contribution may be to reduce the transmission of anxiety, over and above whatever role they may play in reducing transmission of Covid-19. The potential value of universal masking in giving health care workers the confidence to absorb and implement the more foundational infection-prevention practices described above may be its greatest contribution.

        Mask don’t do a fucking thing. They never have, and we knew it all along, yet they were forced on us. In some settings like medical offices and airports/planes they still are. My kids’ private school just dropped mask mandates last week, after months of passing previous stated thresholds followed by an excuse for why it can’t happen yet.

        Fuck every single person who mandated these things. Fuck every single person who did this under the mantle of The SCIENCE™️, and fuck every person who Follow[ed] The Science to enforce them.

    2. That is exactly hitting the nail on the head.

  8. But …….good intentions .
    (Except meany Trump)

  9. "Look at a country like Germany right now—shutdowns, restrictions," de Blasio explained in a follow-up interview. "We cannot let that happen. So we had to take decisive action."

    Look at a country like Germany right now—shutdowns, restrictions.
    We cannot let that happen. So we had to impose shutdowns and restrictions.

    FTFY.

    1. They went to the wrong Germany...closer to 1936...

    2. Classic "the beatings will continue until morale improves"

  10. Imagine still being this butthurt about a mask.

    1. Imagine being so afraid.

    2. Imagine still being butthurt by those whose businesses and lives were disrupted or destroyed because of completely ineffectual mask policy.

      What you needn’t imagine is what kind of asshole one must be to provide cover for those who foisted 2 years worth of worthless bullshit, with “unintended” consequences having an outsized effect on everyone.

      TL:DR
      Eat a huge box of dicks.

      1. We also probably haven't seen any images of that giant floating island of garbage in the pacific lately because it's now completely Carolina blue from surgical masks

        1. +1

          Bit of laughter, a few tears.

    3. Does this mean you're done crying about everything Branch Covidians believed in being proven completely wrong?

    4. Imagine chanting "Science!" while ignoring all the data.

  11. imagine still giving a shit or having COVID consume any of your mental energy.

    I stopped caring about masks when I took mine off long ago. I dont care how stupid you look in yours

    1. I care that we're still in this totalitarian experiment. Health passes are underway in the background.

  12. Thesame problem with repeatedly failed Gummit ' economics' occurs bc they use the same Play Book for both.

    They themselves know nothing about the science/ tech/ economics etc.

    So they launch a Dictum then run away and hide while it all blows up, resurfacing later to ' see how it went' in some Committee meeting.

    The Committee of course tells them what they want to hear, that they ' Made a Difference' snd thats always true- making it worse. Worse is different than Better.

    This is the result of Centralization instead of Representation. Its Communism. And it always fails.

    The badis in reality that Policy makers made was that there was NOTHING that could be done to stop this.

    No science was applied, instead, shallow ' measures' that were so '1800s'.

    The basic problem is not a virus. Its too many people stuffed into cities and THAT is the definition of ' unsustainable.'

    Fuck Joe Putin

    1. And the thing is that everybody seemed to understand that in April 2020. Two weeks to flatten the curve. Then the antibody tests showed that the virus had already been circulating for a while and we didn't even notice. Then the 'leaders' shifted to zero covid but were too cowardly to say it.

  13. “Unvaccinated Americans were 10 to 20 times more likely to die from COVID-19 in fall 2021 than those who had received their shots.”

    They were also *infinitely* *less* likely to die of anaphylactic shock, cardiac events, or strokes caused by the vaccine, or to have life-changing non-fatal adverse events. If you’re under 65, at a healthy weight, and don’t have diabetes or other significant comorbidities, the mRNA vaccines flagrantly fail any honest risk-benefit analysis.

    Also, a reminder to those who are afraid of elementary school-level mathematics: the vanishingly small fatality rate for healthy non-elderly people due to covid, multiplied by “10 to 20” (I’d need to see Welch’s sources before I believe that, by the way), is still vanishingly small. Taking an experimental therapeutic with serious known side effects
    and no long-term safety data (hell, without even a control group in the clinical trial since Pfizer blew it up) to mitigate that tiny probability is just terrible, ignorant risk management.

    1. Link please. That's bullshit.

      1. If what I said was bullshit, then it should be easy to refute with facts. Interesting that you didn’t even try.

      2. How many times have I given you VAERS, DMED, JAMA and plenty of other peer reviewed academic publications clearly indicating that the jab is associated with dramatic increases in all the aformentioned diseases, and more?

        1. youre giving a calculus book to a hamster...

          Itll just chew the pages...

          1. At least that's cute.

            1. Crock pot cute...

              1. Cute hamster, Joe's just angry and pathetic.

    2. Yep. My age cohort has an unvaxxed IFR of 0.3%. After the vax it drops to 0.05%. My real risk reduction is 0.25%.

      Only a bureaucrat would claim that somebody 99.7% safe is 'at-risk', while somebody who is 99.95% is 'actually safe'.

    3. Also, at least part, and probably a large part, of unvaccinated people having “10 to 20 times” the fatality rate of vaccinated people is due to the profoundly dishonest and manipulative counting of those who have received the shot as “unvaccinated” until two weeks after the first shot and as either “unvaccinated” or “partially vaccinated” until two weeks after the second. There’s no other “vaccine” where you’re not considered “vaccinated” for some arbitrary period of time following your receipt of the shot, and I have not heard a satisfactory explanation for this method of counting with regard to the mRNA shot. It appears to be nothing more than a way to misdirect from the “vaccines’” poor efficacy.

      1. ...and that 10-20 times reduction is not being seen anywhere else in the world. Places like the UK, Iceland, and Israel have lots of good data that place the reduction at more like 1-3 times. But this is a relative risk so you have to consider the magnitude of the absolute risk to determine if the reduction is actually significant.

        1. I've seen real data showing a 4x reduction in death rate. It becomes 10x when adjusted for age and risk factors.

          But comparing IFR may also be misleading, if the type of person who gets vaccinated is also more likely to be the type of person who decides to get tested more frequently.

          1. ...with an 80% erroneous test?

          2. Likewise, one of the reasons that efficacy rates dropped a bit is that a lot of people have gotten the 'rona. Going simply vaccinated vs unvaccinated doesn't account for that, but it's what we have done.

            And the remarkable infectivity of Omicron, plus how mild it is, skews things even more. The data are simplistic, but they do show that vaccines are effective.

            But... effective for very young people doesn't mean crap when young people aren't at risk. And vaccines don't stop transmission dead, so there's far less of a societal justification for a mandate.

            Frankly, I don't get why people give a shit if a vaccine isn't perfect. The real problem is with vaccine passports and mandates for a vaccine that is solely for the protection of the person who gets it. At that point, you should make your own decisions. If I'm 70 I'm all over that shit, if I'm 20? Well, getting the Omicron isn't likely to be bad.

            That isn't something that warrants mandates. Granted, I'm anti mandate in general, but in this case you can't even point to societal benefits to justify the mandates.

      2. And now they want to space out the first/second doses by 8 weeks. That's basically 70 days of starting the vax regimen when you are considered 'unvaxxed'.

        1. And the jab loses what efficacy it had in 3-4 months.

          1. That's kind of the point to spacing it out. One jab is good enough for most people to get the LT effects, anyway.

            It's unfortunate that the mRNA shots ended up being an immunological sugar rush. Hopefully the next gen ones from Sanofi and Novavax have a longer half life.

            1. There has never been an mRNA vaccine attempt that was safe and effective. Uniformly, attempts have resulted in worse outcomes than the control group.

              The jab does not create enduring antibodies, does not foster diverse recognition of mutations in said pathogen, creates non-neutralizing receptors that mediate infection to your immune cells, causes massive increases in myocardial risks and a diverse host of other ailments (all in line with every other failure in the history of Pfizer) and you can't wait for the next attempt?

              1. The next attempt with a different technological basis? Sure, quite eager to see the results of that. The flaws of the Alpha will drive the progress of the Beta.

                I'm required to get all vaxxed up by both my employer and the state, and I don't expect either to change its policy. Getting that requirement down to every three years instead of every six months holds great appeal to me.

                1. My fault, I skimmed - saw "recombinant protein..." and assumed the trend.

                  That said, it's 1) fighting a rapidly mutating flulike virus. Good luck.
                  2) being beaten only twice a year instead of give times still is worse than no beatings at all.

      3. the vaxxed ones also coincide with " elderly and at risk"

        That does not translate to " general population"

        Its knee jerk, one size fits all policy that asshole politicians are known for.

  14. "Yet when the CDC talks, governments in the kinds of places where people have "In this house, we believe in science" yard signs tend to rubber-stamp the recommendations."

    If you have to put a sign out in front of your house to inform everyone how great you are... maybe you're not as great of a person as you think you are.

    1. Believe Science
      B.S.

      Fits perfectly

    2. "In this house, we believe in science when it's fit our biased world view..."

      FTFY

    3. If you claim to "believe in science", you don't know what science is.

    4. If you claim to "believe in science", you don't know what science is. Like believers in Jesus, you've made yourself a likely target for hucksters, scammers, and Dunning-Kruger victims - only more so, since the average Jesus freak has read _and understood_ enough of the Bible to reject many of the bulls*****rs.

  15. The democrats’ attempts to backpedal on COVID restrictions are almost comical. Reminds me of a crazy ex-girlfriend I had who would throw tantrums about everything then claim she had “changed” after I dumped her. Guess what? You can’t change who you are, and covid has exposed team blue as a bunch of meddling Karens, so too little too late.

    1. I have been amazed at the willful ignorance of progshit zealots before and I expect to be so again... Just look at all the leftists here - confronted with evidence, does Joe Friday admit fault and analyze his convictions, or does he make a new thread to repeat his crap?

  16. I see our intrepid writers yet again Welch on the opportunity of covering another delightful aspect of this farce - the CDC has not only been lying to everyone, but also withholding data on Covid.

    So yes, the data from Israel, UK, Belgium, Ireland or just about anywhere else is more reliable.

    1. Covid is Pi, a transcendentAl number.

      " This" clusterfuck has been policy makers writing Pi out, then that being declared null and void bc one digit at 10 places out is wrong.

      Its still Pi. Except some nit picker found an excuse to disbelieve " pre- data" that masks dont work, instead hanging their hats on a small percentage where they ---" might"__ stop droplets and summarily declaring that as a dictum from God himself.

  17. (The Supreme Court would at the end of month swat that reversal down.)

    Not at the local level, it didn't.

    As I sit here today, Seattle is still under an eviction moratorium.

    1. Hows that? " Interfering in private contracts"... or something...

      That sounds rather "Vlad...."

  18. "The evidence is clear," responded the country's highest-ranking public health scientist. "Masks can help prevent the spread of COVID-19 by reducing your chance of infection by more than 80 percent, whether it's an infection from the flu, from the coronavirus, or even just the common cold. In combination with other steps, like getting your vaccination, hand washing, and keeping physical distance, wearing your mask is an important step you can take to keep us all healthy."

    That is an absolute lie. Absolute medical misinformation.

    1. Its a line from a TV commercial.

      Hiding behind " can help"

      Can also means " can not."

      0.000000000000000000001% chance is " can"

      Probabalism.
      End Justifies the Means.

      The idealogical roots behind the Inquisition.

  19. Yet when the CDC talks, governments in the kinds of places where people have "In this house, we believe in science" yard signs

    My neighborhood, writ large, with fireworks and a large brass marching band going through it every day at noon.

  20. "without the vaccine, when your child's teammates take the field, they'll miss out. Or when their friends go off to the movies, a concert, or get a bite to eat, your teen will miss out."

    For Mila.

    1. thats a tv commercial.

      Fuck that nonsense.

      They can keep their ball game and movie.

  21. "She gave me Covid...I got better"

    A Settled Science Rally....

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=GpMjakNhZTc

  22. "...I have a 3-year-old who goes to school, sits outside for snacks and lunch, wears a mask inside, and it's no big deal to him."

    Jen, your kid has never known anything else, and that's the really sad part.

    1. Her kid probably has to deal with all sorts of stupidity from his parents. The fact that he can put up with it doesn't make it right.

    2. My kid turned 1 when all the covid bs started. She has always refused to wear any sort of mask (not that we would force it on her, but checked to see how she would react.) She also hates anyone (especially me and mom) wearing them and will complain and pull them off of us. Glad we live somewhere where I only rarely had to wear them. Work was a different story, unfortunately

  23. Hitler- Mengele also had a " experimental vaccine to work" program.

    Impfugen macht frie.

  24. This pandemic is so scripted and contrived you can practically see the puppet strings at work on nearly all of the participating politicians and media personalities.

    Given that they are winding down the virus propaganda machine just in time to ramp up the war propaganda machine - until the next virus comes along right on cue - let's put their fear-mongering lies under a microscope and examine them in order to arm ourselves with the knowledge we need to guard ourselves against the next wave of deception:

    -New Normal
    -Build Back Better
    -Follow The Science
    -Flatten the Curve
    -Alone Together
    -Stay Home
    -Protect/Save the NHS
    -Save Lives-Your Home is Your Lifeline
    -Stay Home-Save Lives, Avoid Stage 5
    -Don’t Panic, Don’t Rush, Don’t Overstock
    -Trust The Science
    -Stay smart – Stay Safe – Stay Open
    -NHS Staff: We Stay At Work for You – You Stay At Home For Us
    -Test, Trace, Treat
    -Only You Can Prevent the Spread
    -The vaccine will save us – The booster will save us – The fourth dose is the answer
    -Your freedom ends where your contagion begins.
    -Believe In The Science
    -I wear my mask to protect you and you wear your mask to protect me
    -Out of an abundance of caution
    -We’re all in this together
    -It's Safe and Effective
    -There is no evidence that that vaccine is harmful…
    -THE SCIENCE IS YOUR NEW GOD AND IT IS WHAT WE SAY IT IS

    These are not science terms and phrases. They are hypnotic chants meant to induce an audience into a suggestive state of mind – this is why they are repeated over and over and over again.

    Furthermore, masking has historically been an integral part of an initiation ritual: in our case the initiation into the “new normal” the globalists have planned for us.

    Put another way - as you all are of course aware - all of this was one giant world-wide psychological operation. Here is a collection of authorities admitting this with its horrible effects woven through them. Take the time to read through this–the crimes are horrible:

    https://tritorch.com/covidhypnosis

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