“They’re making shit up!”

9/9/21

Dr. Brooke Decker, left, argues with Dana Gibson, right, about Gibson’s opposition to a mask mandate for students before the North Allegheny School District school board regarding the district’s mask policy at North Allegheny Senior High School in McCandless, Pennsylvania. (ALEXANDRA WIMLEY/PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE VIA AP)

  • “The documents make it clear that assertions by the NIH Director, Francis Collins, and the NIAID Director, Anthony Fauci, that the NIH did not support gain-of-function research or potential pandemic pathogen enhancement at WIV are untruthful.”Richard Ebright, the Board of Governors Professor of Chemistry and Chemical Biology at Rutgers University and Laboratory Director at the Waksman Institute of Microbiology, after newly released documents provided details of U.S.-funded research on several types of coronaviruses at the Wuhan Institute of Virology in China, including two previously unpublished grant proposals that were funded by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, as well as project updates relating to EcoHealth Alliance’s research, which has been scrutinized amid increased interest in the origins of the pandemic. The documents were released in connection with ongoing Freedom of Information Act litigation by The Intercept against the National Institutes of Health.

  • “Just got my absentee ballot for the California recall. I moved to Tennessee in November, registered to vote here AND submitted a Voter Registration Cancellation form for CA within a month of leaving. Let’s give these bureaucrats control of our healthcare next!”Jeremy Boreing, podcast host and co-founder of the Daily Wire.

  • “The potential educational harms of mandatory-masking policies are much more firmly established, at least at this point, than their possible benefits in stopping the spread of COVID-19 in schools.”Vinay Prasad, associate professor of epidemiology and biostatistics at UC San Francisco, in a recent article for The Atlantic on the downsides of having kids wear masks in school.1

  • “I wish poets understood that the general population has no interest in what we do, so when we speak we are speaking only to each other. The delusion that poetry is something powerful is a straight line to all kinds of toxic positivities that are really just us lying to ourselves.”A tweet from Danielle Rose, former poetry editor for Barren magazine, that resulted in her being fired.2

  • “This desire to reverse Trump’s policies and to do so quickly has landed the Biden administration in this predicament, which was not unpredictable and is very sad to watch.”Alan Bersin, who served as commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection under President Barack Obama. In a recent New York Times article, anonymous officials inside the Biden administration are quoted as being relieved that the Supreme Court effectively revived the Trump-era policy; in fact, some Biden officials were already talking about restarting Mr. Trump's policy in a limited way to deter migration, as concern had already been building that the speed of its immigration changes may have encouraged migrants to stream toward the United States.3

  • “Misinformation on Facebook got six times more clicks than factual news during the 2020 election, study says.”Headline from a Washington Post story that, ironically, is itself misinformation. According to the text of the article, the content that received six times more clicks was not specifically alleged to be misinformation; rather, it was merely posted by “news publishers known for putting out misinformation.” Why does this matter? Because it's one thing to prove something is “misinformation,” but dismissing entire sources of news as misinformation far more effectively narrows the boundaries of acceptable discourse than does stamping out individual ideas. The Post article contrasts the alleged misinformation-purveyors with “trustworthy news sources, such as CNN or the World Health Organization,” both of which have posted misinformation (q.v. — CNN below).

  • “They’re making shit up! They keep saying I’m taking horse dewormer. I literally got it from a doctor. It’s an American company. They won the Nobel Prize in 2015 for use in human beings and CNN is saying I’m taking horse dewormer. They must know that’s a lie.”Podcast host Joe Rogan. Ivermectin is used to treat humans, but versions of the drug are also used to deworm livestock. The inventors of the drug received the Noble Prize for ivermectin’s contribution to human progress, saving billions of people from blindness and parasitic infestation. Some doctors believe the well documented anti-inflammatory properties of ivermectin can help prevent or combat the so-called cytokine storm where by COVID triggers a release of inflammatory proteins called cytokines into the bloodstream. The FDA has discouraged ivermectin prescriptions pending further study. Rogan received the drug from his doctor; he recovered from COVID within a day.

  • “I already set the teakettle on heat.”Russian space chief Dmitry Rogozin, who invited Elon Musk to his home in Russia during a recent CNN interview. Rogozin said that “We respect him [Musk] as an organizer of the space industry and as an inventor, who is not afraid to take risk” and that he wants to discuss “exploring the universe, extraterrestrial life, and how we can use space to preserve life on Earth.”

  • “We think we are in some kind of jail.”An anonymous Afghan woman who is one of dozens of Americans, along with a much larger number of U.S. green card holders and family members, unable to board pre-arranged charter flights at the airport in the northern Afghan city of Mazar-e-Sharif because the Taliban is preventing them from doing so. Veterans’ groups, Democratic lawmakers, and Afghans called Tuesday for urgent Biden administration action on a weeklong standoff that has left hundreds of would-be evacuees stranded.

  • “There was no reduction in per-population daily mortality, hospital bed, ICU bed, or ventilator occupancy of COVID-19-positive patients attributable to the implementation of a mask-wearing mandate.”Conclusion of a study conducted by the US Army Institute of Surgical Research and the Brooke Army Medical Center.

  • “From Cradle to Grave, Democrats Move to Expand Social Safety Net: The $3.5 trillion social policy bill that lawmakers begin drafting this week would touch virtually every American, at every point in life, from conception to old age.”Headline of a New York Times article that appears to recognize conception as the beginning of life, which, amusingly, contradicts the paper’s hardline stance on the controversial “heartbeat” law that went into effect in Texas on September 1st.

  • “They asked them that weekly. Weekly, as if they had changed their minds. And none of that was disclosed to the parents.” Former Fox News host and NBC correspondent Megyn Kelly, who said she disenrolled her son from one of the nation's best all-boys schools after she discovered the school was asking students “whether they were still sure they were boys.”

  • “The greatest threat to global public health is the continued failure of world leaders to keep the global temperature rise below 1.5° C and to restore nature.”A joint statement published simultaneously by the editors of 229 medical journals. 


  • 70%: Percentage of recent calls to the Mississippi Poison Control Center that were from people who had ingested ivermectin to try to treat COVID-19, according to a false story from the Associated Press that was “erroneously reported.” State Epidemiologist Dr. Paul Byers said the number of calls to poison control about ivermectin was actually about 2%. In addition to being picked up by other mainstream outlets like MSNBC and Newsweek, a number of notable media figures (i.e. - Rachel Maddow, who tweeted it to her 10 million followers, but still hasn't deleted the tweet) spread the false story without verifying it’s authenticity after the hospital system in question denied the source’s claim that people were being treated for the overdoses.

  • $32.7 million: Total bonuses that Virginia's largest school district is paying teachers for their “extraordinary contributions and sacrifices” during the coronavirus pandemic, which they spent primarily working from home.

  • 18,765: Unaccompanied children who have crossed the border so far this fiscal year in the El Paso Sector, compared to 4,832 last year. If the children are Mexican, they are immediately handed over to the Mexican authorities. Minors 17 and under from other countries cannot be immediately deported and are placed in the care of the Department of Health and Human Services’ Refugee Resettlement and housed in temporary federal shelters until case workers can determine if they have family in the U.S.

  • 67: Abortions carried out in just 17 hours by Whole Woman's Health in Fort Worth, Texas as women raced to get the procedure before the Senate Bill 8 went into effect. Also referred to as the “heartbeat bill,” the new state law prevents women from getting abortions after the fetus has a detectable heartbeat (usually at six weeks). Some abortion advocates argue the law effectively bans abortion, as many women don’t know they’re pregnant yet at six weeks.

  • 70%: Estimated percentage of Salvadorians who do not have a bank account, and are dependent on money received from relatives living abroad. El Salvador is now the first country in the world to accept bitcoin cryptocurrency as official tender, a move that the country’s president believes will generate jobs and help include thousands who are outside the formal economy.

  • 9: The number of states that prohibit school districts from setting mask mandates. Conversely, sixteen states and the District of Columbia require masks be worn in schools.

  • 4: Guantanamo detainees, of the five total whom former President Barack Obama released in exchange for former U.S. Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl in 2014, who now hold senior positions in the interim government created by the Taliban in Afghanistan. According to the Afghan television network TOLOnews, leadership positions were given to Khairullah Khairkhwa, Norullah Noori, Abdul Haq Wasiq, and Mohammad Fazl.

  • 50: Health care employees suing the Henry Ford Health System over its requirement for all workers to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19, arguing that the mandate unconstitutionally infringes on a person’s bodily autonomy. The complaint, filed Monday in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan, said that the vaccine mandate violates the Fourteenth Amendment’s protection of “personal autonomy and bodily integrity.”



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I'm neither a Democrat nor a Republican, liberal or conservative. I'm an independent constitutionalist and an American, which is what I believe everyone should be first and foremost. But I’m a historian at heart. I majored in U.S. History at West Point, and I read for fun the kind of tomes that usually serve as assigned texts in courses most people decry as “boring.” Accordingly, I tend to view things through a historical lens. I think retrospect is invaluable.

I say all this to preface the following: I'm really concerned about the current state of our country and the insidious ways that the pandemic has been politicized and used for personal gain. I know rank opportunism when I see it, and the governmental and corporate responses to the situation we find ourselves in have been nothing but rank opportunism writ large, with only a tangential connection to public health.

The social discourse, which is largely overseen and directed by the mainstream media, the “elites,” and the honchos at the top of the federal and administrative food chain, does not allow for debate; there is only discussion of the enforcement of policies, and what to do with the people who don't adhere to those policies. But these are not laws, and they were never enacted by a legislative assembly.

Basic cost-benefit analysis, which is the framework that society has always used for anything involving risks or tradeoffs, is still not even remotely applied to the pandemic. It's now de rigueur in Western democracies for large swaths of apoplectic citizens to demand that any measures undertaken to prevent COVID deaths are vital, regardless of the costs imposed by those policies. The refusal to assign any costs to the harms caused by anti-COVID policies themselves isn't just misguided, it's irrational in the extreme.

Unfortunately, though these are issues on which reasonable minds can differ, there's no dissent allowed in the mainstream. Just as those who're not ardent adherents to the new Left are denounced as ignorant, bigoted, Republikkkans, etc., those who profess divergent views on mandates are condemned as uneducated plebeians. “Conspiracy theorists.” The politics-as-religion fundamentalists who insist that Voter ID is Jim Crow 2.0 are the very same people supporting vaccine passports while wearing “My Body, My Choice” on their shirts.

The incessant fear mongering of the media has resulted in a majority of people so scared of COVID-19 that they've gone along with unprecedented infringements on civil liberties. What people are really scared of is death—so scared of dying that they're afraid to live. Cowardice is not a virtue, and I'm tired of seeing people “grave dancing”—celebrating the deaths of those who've either chosen to not get vaccinated or been unable to. Both sides of the ideological spectrum obviously indulge in schadenfreude, but the Left’s hegemony in culture and media comes with immense social power, and they've taken to gleefully exploiting these deaths, publicly shaming and humiliating anyone whom they perceive to have been reckless during the pandemic.

For the sake of perspective, here’s a list of legitimate sources I gathered (linked for verification, if you’re so inclined) with various estimated COVID-19 survival/fatality rates that do not include vaccinations:

The British Medical Journal: 0.66% fatality rate. AP News: “Greater than 98.2% survival rate.” WebMD: “COVID-19 recovery rate is between 97% and 99.75%.” Politifact: 1.7% fatality rate. USA Today: 99% survival rate. WCNC: 99% survival rate. Worldometer: 1.4% fatality rate. Full Fact: 99-99.5% survival rate. Medscape: “Considerably less than 1%” fatality rate.

For the vaccinated, the numbers are even lower. Per The Washington Post, data from the CDC indicates the death rate from breakthrough infections is 0.0005 percent. To put that in perspective, your chance of dying from a lightning strike is .0007 percent, and your chance of dying from the seasonal flu is 0.1 percent. If you’re vaccinated, you have a much greater chance of dying from a hornet, wasp or bee sting, a dog attack, a car crash, drowning, sunstroke, or choking on food than you do of dying from COVID-19.

All of the freaking out is theater. It's theatrics. In the post-modern age, one demonstrates one’s commitment to a particular truth or cause through performance. The screaming and wailing on social media and television is performance designed both to signal one’s commitment to a supposed truth and also identify the heretics who choose not to perform, and not to conform.

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Contemporary America: Where you can be fired for stating a true but banal point that offended some people who prefer believing they are more influential than they really are.

3

The thrust of this story is that Biden's border policies have been so disastrous that White House aides were secretly relieved when SCOTUS ordered them to reinstate Trump's “Remain In Mexico” policy.