Trust the (Chinese) Science

From Uncommon Decent, Why trust in “science” is becoming unwise

—<Quote begins>—

And now, from the “really compromised” department:

Allegations swirl that it was not down to editorial misjudgement, but something more sinister: a desire to appease China for commercial reasons. The Financial Times revealed four years ago that debt-laden Springer Nature, the German group that publishes Nature, was blocking access in China to hundreds of academic articles mentioning subjects deemed sensitive by Beijing such as Hong Kong, Taiwan or Tibet. China is also spending lavishly around the world to win supremacy in science — which includes becoming the biggest national sponsor of open access journals published by both Springer Nature and Elsevier, owner of The Lancet.

One source estimated that 49 sponsorship agreements between Springer Nature and Chinese institutions were worth at least $10m last year. These deals cover the publishing fees authors would normally pay in such journals, so they smooth the path for Chinese authors while creating a dependency culture.

Ian Birrell, “Beijing’s useful idiots” at Unherd

So articles are free if China likes them but not even available if China doesn’t like them?

Anyone remember the March for Science? This stuff will not end well for “Trust the science.”

See also: What will the long-term effect be of science journals playing useful idiots around COVID-19? Some of us have been reflecting on the effect of the COVID-19 panic on the public estimation of science. Here’s an article on the “useful idiot” problem among science journals.

—<Quote ends>—

These people are a joke.

A ‘bough-and-paid-for’ joke.

I wonder whose going the laughing…

China’s Youth Learns to Lie Flat

From South China Morning Post:

Why China’s youth are ‘lying flat’ in protest of their bleak economic prospects

* Young Chinese fed up with gruelling work hours, conspicuous consumption and skyrocketing house prices are protesting by doing the bare minimum

* The social resistance movement called ‘lying flat’ is worrying authorities, who see it as a potential threat to China’s dream of national rejuvenation

Why China’s youth are ‘lying flat’ in protest of their bleak economic prospecTS
He Huifeng in Guangdong and Tracy Qu

From the body of the article:

The movement’s roots can be traced back to an obscure internet post called “lying flat is justice”, in which a user called Kind-Hearted Traveller combined references to Greek philosophers with his experience living on 200 yuan (US$31) a month, two meals a day and not working for two years.

“I can just sleep in my barrel enjoying a sunbath like Diogenes, or live in a cave like Heraclitus and think about ‘Logos’,” the person wrote.

“Since there has never really been a trend of thought that exalts human subjectivity in this land, I can create it for myself. Lying down is my wise man movement.”

According to the anonymous poster, this humble existence left them physically healthy and mentally free.

Although the original post has been scrubbed from the internet by censors, copies have spread quickly online, sparking lively discussion and videos that have garnered millions of views each.

Why China’s youth are ‘lying flat’ in protest of their bleak economic prospects
He Huifeng in Guangdong and Tracy Qu

China without a work ethic is just another rapidly aging Second World society.

Worse, actually.

“Whip the slaves, give them nothing, they will give up.”

Side note: In China, it’s a lot safer for locals to talk about Diogenes or Heraclitus, than about Jesus or Moses.

So, surprise surprise, people and governments get what they encourage.

It should be understood that Our Betters in the West have much the same plan for Western young people: “You pay. We prosper.”

But Christian parents can guide and support their children, in effectively spoiling the plans of their enemies.

Lafayette Square: More to the Tale

The one who states his case first seems right, until the other comes and examines him.

Proverbs 18:17, New English Version

I recently discussed my outrage at another media tale regarding Trump and the Park Police.

But perhaps, the full story has not been told:

BastionUnity
Ok, so if I am understanding this correctly, all it says is that the Park Police weren’t the issue, it was the SS and BoP

This is certainly possible, that Trump – or an associated aide – indeed directed a Secret Service/Bureau of Prisons to exercise undue brutality in the clearing of Lafayette Square.

All the facts are needed.

I still distrust the media, as should you. But just because the media are Servants of Progressive Power, doesn’t mean that conservatives politicians can be trusted to stay within the law.

Lets see what a more complete investigation can deliver.

(And wouldn’t it be nice to not have the government investigate itself? But figuring out a way around that will have to wait for another time. Especially as the press simply cannot be trusted.)

Wrathful Lambs

I need to be very clear about a parallel I’m going to draw. Jesus is the Lamb of God who was slain; his death alone takes away sins for those who are in Him. Scripture tells us of a day when Jesus will judge the world, and this terrifying day is known as the Wrath of the Lamb. I do not want to distract away from who Jesus is and what He will accomplish on that day. 

But I want to talk about other lambs for a moment while never losing sight of the Lamb of God. These other lambs don’t take away the sins of the world, but lambs who went to a kind of slaughter themselves. Selfish shepherds and other predators have taken from and consumed too many of the most defenseless among us. More and more, the quiet, traumatized cries of the mistreated have been rising. Many ignored these cries, and the cries for help are turning into something else. These little lambs, innocents who were torn apart for the pleasure of predators, are beginning to show signs of wrath.

The Holy Spirit, inspiring Scripture’s description of how Jesus’ judgment would look, chose this very imagery through John’s writing. The idea of an un-intimidating lamb raging against evil is a strange one. In Revelation, the Lamb, enraged at the evils of the world, pours out His righteous wrath. These lambs are enraged at the evils of the church, and they are set to stampede in their own wrath.

Wrathful Lambs: When the abused come to the end of their patience
Joe Tenney

It’s about time.

Judgement must – MUST – come on the Church first, before it falls on the world.

But even as destruction strikes, those Christians who are not part of the division of wrath-bringers and justice-bringers must work as healing-bringers, setting things right, leading by demonstration and our lives what just and righteous living is about.

Wrath Bringers and Healing Bringers

Fortunately, the divisions of “wrath-bringers” and “healing-bringers” are not mutually exclusive. There is a distinction though: not all of us are victims who can lawfully bring their case before the Lord, and get the lawful-wrathful compensation due to them.

Naturally, we focus on one work or another, not many are called to do both equally.

As for those of us who are not victims?

The strong must serve the weak: Jesus is the example.

Justice must be done. And it will be done.

Get on the Lord’s side, or get run over.

Reconstruction Must Follow Judgement

Being against evil is good – and desperately needed! – but insufficient.

The Kingdom of Satan – even when it is waving crosses everywhere, and led by anointed pastors and priests – must fall.

But the Kingdom of Christ must rise, to take its place.

Evil laws mus be annulled: but good laws – as defined by God – must also be proclaimed. And enforced.

The demons must be driven out. But if the Holy Spirit is not invited in, then all that will change are the nature and the number of the demons.

We do not need a new pack of lies to replace the old.

We need the truth.

As defined by God, and not by powerful men, religious or secularist.

The Day of the Lord

Lawful wrath, when it strikes, is swift and devastating.

Healing and reconstruction is slow and difficult.

BOTH are needed, for a Godly civilization to arise.

What I Learned During the 2020 Fight Over Lockdowns

Just a copy-paste of Jeffery Tucker’s article, What I Learned During the 2020 Fight Over Lockdowns

Summary: People talk about freedom, but when the Experts speak, they kneel without a second’s thought.

Liberty is far more fragile than we though. People are far more conditioned to Obey Authority than we thought.

Tucker wrote:

Where were the places that did not lock down? It was not the tax havens. It was not the birthplaces of liberty like Spain, Italy, or the UK. It was not among the most highly educated and credentialed populations of Massachusetts or Melbourne. Internationally, it was Tanzania, Sweden, Japan, Taiwan, Nicaragua, and Belarus. Even Russia opened up sooner than the US with much fewer stringencies. If I had told you in 2019 to move to Nicaragua right away to preserve your freedom, you would have thought me crazy. And yet that is precisely where we found ourselves, living on a big globe with only a handful of implausible outposts of resistance that no one could have identified in advance.

Some people wish to be free.

The people who wish to be free are generally NOT the highly educated indoctrinated people.

Tucker continues:

3. How resistance is achieved comes mainly from the intellectual sphere, pushed with good timing in a venue with genuine reach.

When I say “intellectual sphere” I do not mean universities and think tanks. I mean, pertaining to the ideas that people hold about themselves and their public lives. These are affected by myriad influences from many branches of thought: religion, economics, public health, memory, deep cultural assumptions, and so on. It is the ideas that people hold that drive the decision to resist or comply. The time to encourage and mold the ideas that people hold are when people are asking the right questions. It is not some abstract “education” that fixes the world but compelling ideas spoken with conviction at the right time. The time for intellectuals to speak out was when the lockdowns happened, not a year later when it was safe to do so. 

The Intellectuals value being safe, and being in a comfortable relationship with Authority.

That’s their road. Christians are commanded by God to choose a different road.

The next bit from Tucker is worth reading twice, for those of use who refuse to kneel to Our Betters.

5. The motivation to confront evil stems from moral conviction primarily and relies on a relentless focus with strategic considerations.

I’ve noticed through the years working in ideological spaces that despair is a huge problem. Even for the most sincere intellectuals, there are so many barriers to making a difference, it can be discouraging when the results of these efforts are not very apparent. But also from my experience, there is one force that is the most powerful and yet the most neglected one: a willingness to stand up when it counts due to deep moral conviction. It need not always be worn and paraded but it must exist. 

Expediency as a first principle is easily detectable as a grave form of weakness and it can kill any cause. Expediency can also stem from institutional arrangements in which purpose is uncertain, leadership is divided, or leaders are risk-averse. Such problems can make change impossible, whereas a steadfast commitment is indeed capable of bringing about change. Any institution lacking in clear purpose will drift, and its staff and employees will drift with it. 

This moral conviction need not be set against creativity, strategic adaptability, and clever marketing. All these are crucial for good strategy but conviction is the indispensable element. When the war comes, when lockdowns are upon us, when the violation of free speech occurs, when people are not granted their fundamental rights, when policies bump hard against what our intuition tells us is right and true, freedom requires that compelling voices speak out, not later, but now, not with ambiguity but with real precision and conviction. The mystery of influence will never be fully solved but these are the core fundamentals that can never be given up, lest the cause is lost. 

Christians need not worry too much about the mystery of influence over others. If God grants it, great! If not? Such is life. The key is to gain God’s approval, not that of powerful men, and not the approval of the masses.

Far more important than the mystery of influence is the movement of the Holy Spirit.

Read your Bible, and have the Law ingrained in your heart, and pray unceasingly. This is the key to recognize His movement, His hand, His word.

Not Tucker, but me:

So far as the Progressive Press is concerned, it’s all about “OBEY AUTHORITY”.

Especially when Authority is dressed up with white lab coats, and/or speak with Progressive political backing.

It’s good to see that the Right is not nearly so quick to Kneel and Submit as the Left obviously is.

Mainly, because certain segments of the Right have a built-in distrust of human authority figures, and their supposed Concern for the Masses.

May those suspicious segments grow, and multiply.

Tucker’s article is now quoted below:


Last year presented the shock of our lives, the near-end of anything we call human liberty in the US (but for one lonely state of 50), all in the name of virus control. I was party to a strategy that successfully helped fight the lockdowns, and it taught me some valuable lessons about the role of ideas in realizing change. 

I had hoped that the fires of liberty, burning within the hearts of the American public, would have been strong enough to stop this kind of tyranny from being visited upon us. I would have predicted massive pushback, but it did not happen for a good part of the year. People were mired in fear and confusion. It felt like wartime, with a population traumatized by shock and awe. Even so, the cause of liberty has generally prevailed over the lockdowns, even though tremendous confusions and impositions remain. That demonstrates that ideas do matter and can beat back the worst forms of malice, provided they are advanced with intelligence, strategic experience, and unrelenting moral courage. 

All my reading in college convinced me that freedom is the most sloganized but least appreciated force for good in the history of humanity. It is how the human imagination is unleashed to create progress, a good life, peace, and general prosperity. We owe the best of civilization around us not to plans and controls but to the seemingly risky chaos of leaving people alone to solve their problems – something most intellectuals and states are loath to do. 

Murray Rothbard, along with his predecessors in liberal thought for centuries, taught me that this struggle between liberty and power is the essential desideratum of the historical narrative, and not only in history but in the current moment. Continuing and winning this fight is the determinative factor in whether and to what extent we can create the conditions for continued progress or plunge further into the controlled morass in which the whole world found itself in 2020. 

Our times truly are at a turning point. 

Most of the world today still struggles with the remnants of lockdowns. Americans can only travel to seven countries in the world without restrictions, tracking, vaccination checks, and quarantines, none of which existed only 18 months ago. The emergency visited upon us in the middle of March 2020 is still with us today and we have a moral imperative to continue to fight and defeat this overreaching hand of tyrannical power. The above lessons will help us do this.

In my entire career, I’ve variously been associated with institutions and projects that have strived to make a dent in the intellectual and public sphere on behalf of the cause of liberty. These efforts have surely not been wasted. Still, the lockdowns did serve as a test of the vibrancy and effectiveness of both the ideas and the institutions. It is a sad truth that these voices fell almost entirely silent just when they were needed most. When the shock of lockdowns hit us, the world cried out for answers as to why this was happening but such answers were not forthcoming. Even more remarkable, some of the very people one might have supposed would be a reliable force for opposition worked to torture their own philosophical leanings in a way to land them on the side of restrictive virus-control measures. 

In mid-January 2020, sensing what might be coming, I wrote against the quarantine power. I pointed out that such a power does exist on the books. It’s been there since 2006. It could be deployed under the right conditions, and Covid-19 might be that condition. I did not genuinely believe it would be used, and the thought of generalized lockdowns was inconceivable. 

That article gained me some attention on podcasts and media shows but the hosts mostly dismissed the fear, and some even chided me for writing it. Another early article came on March 8 in which I blasted the city government of Austin, Texas, for using executive fiat to cancel South by Southwest, a huge international conference of people we now know were in almost no danger of catching or spreading disease. 

When I released that piece, I thought I would be joined by a hundred other commentators who would say the same. It was not to be so. I was stunned that I was alone in this opinion. I briefly wondered if I was the crazy one. For weeks after, as the lockdowns unrolled and the fear grew, I considered deleting that piece for fear of how history would treat it. I’m glad I did not. It was the right opinion then and now. 

I was fortunate to be part of an institution with writers and researchers who held the same view, and pushed that position hard when the rest of the world fell silent. This made a huge difference. The experience was the most exciting of my life because I had a front-row seat to watch the interaction of ideas and events, and a huge role in making it all happen. Maybe it was a once-in-a-lifetime experience, never to be repeated. 

Nonetheless, there are lessons to be drawn here that pertain to any intellectual or institution that sincerely wants to make a difference for good. What follows herein is a summary of the lessons I learned. 

1. Liberty is far more fragile than we knew.

In 2020, liberty was taken away in what seemed like an instant. There is a good excuse, they said, one that had never been tried before in living memory. That reason came out of the blue: public health, and the sudden assertion of the rights of people (some people) not to be exposed to germs. That one consideration became the overriding consideration, and liberty had to fall by the wayside. The “libertarian” movement (with some exceptions) not only had no consensus answer to that claim – people had not thought much about it either way – and many top voices in this community even affirmed this view, as if germs are a phenomenon visited upon the world for the first time and therefore required extraordinary measures by the state to protect society from pathogens. The lack of understanding of public health fundamentals disabled the decisive influence the “libertarian” sector of life might have had during the worst attack on liberty during our lifetimes. 

It was worse than that in terms of general public understanding. The lack of education in basic science over the several decades took its toll. The postwar effort to teach about health in high school, along with basic principles of virus and immunology, clearly faltered over the decades, leaving several generations without the intellectual wherewithal to counter disease panic. The New York Times overtly advocated a medieval solution; the public, in general, reverted to a medieval understanding of disease as if the last 100 years of scientific progress in public health had never happened. 

Meanwhile, the left-wing was so embroiled in their Trump derangement syndrome that they were ready to throw out all principles of civil liberties and back lockdowns. And the right-wing was also disabled due to presidential loyalities; it was Trump himself who initially ordered the lockdowns as part of his longstanding nationalistic bias and “get China” policy. That forged a left-right consensus for lockdowns just as they were happening. That did not break up until many months later when the virus became entirely politicized, with “conservatives” more doubtful of the prevailing narrative and the “liberals” ready to lock down for the duration, regardless of the baneful effects of the constituencies whose interests they claim to champion (the poor, children, workers, people of color, poor nations, etc). 

That confluence of events created a lonely struggle for those of us who had consistent opposition to lockdowns from the beginning. Liberty had been frittered away, the schools and churches closed, business shut, travel restricted, association throttled. Even in places where liberty has a high value, people went along: in rural Texas, SWAT teams were arresting people who gathered in bars just to grab a beer. The population was being mentally reprogrammed in real time. The masking of the whole population was a case in point: without precedent, without solid scientific rationale, with dreadful social effects, but still, compliance was extremely high with people ratting out their friends and neighbors for going without.  

The moral imperative was for compliance and with what? With whatever the CDC was pushing at the time, and that in turn was filtered through a complicated mixture of messy science and political agendas. Still, whatever the CDC said became gospel. And this in turn was reflected in media priorities. Social media began to delete all dissenting opinions. It was ruthless. Media personalities who disagreed were not only deplatformed but made to disappear from any public presence at all. 

And with this perfect storm, liberty took an unprecedented blow in the land of the free. Those of us who had worked for decades to inspire a deep and abiding public commitment to the cause of freedom were left feeling as if our efforts were in vain. Just when the resistance to despotism needed a social force to counter it, it became meek at best, and isolated. I shudder to think what might have happened had a few souls not been out there to take the risk of speaking out. It gained us a tremendous amount of hate, but we served as a reminder that there was no perfect consensus out there for these egregious actions. 

2. The sources of resistance to tyranny come from unexpected places. 

Where were the places that did not lock down? It was not the tax havens. It was not the birthplaces of liberty like Spain, Italy, or the UK. It was not among the most highly educated and credentialed populations of Massachusetts or Melbourne. Internationally, it was Tanzania, Sweden, Japan, Taiwan, Nicaragua, and Belarus. Even Russia opened up sooner than the US with much fewer stringencies. If I had told you in 2019 to move to Nicaragua right away to preserve your freedom, you would have thought me crazy. And yet that is precisely where we found ourselves, living on a big globe with only a handful of implausible outposts of resistance that no one could have identified in advance. 

In the US, there was only one state that fully resisted apart from closing schools for two weeks, and that was South Dakota. That was due to the courage of Governor Kristi Noem, who made her decision to stay open based on an intuition that freedom is better than all forms of government planning. Despite media denunciation, her decision was politically popular in this state that prides itself on the frontier spirit of independence and skepticism toward power. Beyond that, Georgia was the first state to open up after having fully closed. It was accomplished by a Republican governor who defied even President Trump. His decision was widely popular in his state. That further led to openings in Florida, South Carolina, and finally Texas, each one greeted by howls from the media and predictions of disaster that never came true. 

Other communities in the US never locked down, defying even their own governors. A major one that received very little attention – other than perfunctory denunciation from the governor of New York – were the Hasidic Jews in Brooklyn. They went on with their lives under the conviction that their faith dictated certain forms of community engagement, and they refused to give up what was central to their lives for some claim of a disease on the loose that required them to comply. 

Another group receiving almost no attention for their resistance was the Amish of Pennsylvania and Ohio. As the meme said, they were unaffected by Covid because they didn’t have TV or the internet. Yet another community to resist were many people of color in the South. Even now, their vaccination rates are the lowest in the country owing to a deep and justifiable fear of a medical establishment telling them what they are supposed to inject into their arms. These communities of color in the South took to the streets with the George Floyd protests (BLM) but there was plenty of evidence at the time that there was a metatext to these protests: a defiance of lockdowns to which major media could not object. My friends who live here were deeply grateful for the protests and those who pushed them because they knew what was really going on. This was not about BLM; this was standing up to the police power that was enforcing the lockdowns and thus asserting their rights to live freely. 

These were the forces of resistance in the US, in addition to the very small intellectual resistance mostly led by a few outposts and led by small research teams. As time went on, once Trump gave up on lockdowns, Red State governors jumped on board, and with that Fox News spoke out too (rather late in the game). Once it was safe, we saw the D.C. think tanks get involved but this was late in the year. The two weeks to flatten the curve turned to 8 and 10 months before the people who had been assigned the tasks of defending American freedom woke up and got to work. Meanwhile, the real resistance had taken place in the least auspicious communities – ones that we could never have predicted and in places that hardly anyone would have guessed would have led the way in standing up.

In addition, there were the disparate people out there in many states who were skeptical all along – a minority to be sure but they were there. In the early days, I saw very few of these people on social media. People fell silent. Those of us who did speak received torrents of death wishes and denunciation. 

Gradually, over time, that changed. After a year or so of living hell, people began to crawl out and post their opinions. Today, Twitter is filled with people who say that lockdowns were always a terrible idea and that they always opposed them. That’s probably true but the fear campaigns from the media and government silenced them. They were only emboldened by a consistent voice to lead and give them courage. 

I take from these extraordinary examples that the demographics of pushback against tyranny are mixed, unpredictable, and inspired mostly by deep convictions that transcend political categories as we know them. Plus they had to have the courage to act. Tellingly, none of them were part of any well-funded and well-organized “movement.” Their resistance was spontaneous, beautifully unorganized, and stemmed from deep moral conviction.

3. How resistance is achieved comes mainly from the intellectual sphere, pushed with good timing in a venue with genuine reach.

When I say “intellectual sphere” I do not mean universities and think tanks. I mean, pertaining to the ideas that people hold about themselves and their public lives. These are affected by myriad influences from many branches of thought: religion, economics, public health, memory, deep cultural assumptions, and so on. It is the ideas that people hold that drive the decision to resist or comply. The time to encourage and mold the ideas that people hold are when people are asking the right questions. It is not some abstract “education” that fixes the world but compelling ideas spoken with conviction at the right time. The time for intellectuals to speak out was when the lockdowns happened, not a year later when it was safe to do so. 

At this point, I will briefly recount the history of the Great Barrington Declaration that came out in October 2020 and received tens of thousands of media mentions over the coming month. The scientists who were behind this faced an astounding amount of criticism but still went on countless media venues to defend their anti-lockdown views. It was this that caught the attention of Governor Ron DeSantis in Florida, who opened his state completely following many months in which he had been gradually losing confidence in “mitigation measures.”

How did this begin? I had been scrolling through Twitter when I noticed a Harvard professor named Martin Kulldorff who had opened an account simply to remind people of the basic principles of public health, which are not about one disease but all factors that influence health, not just in the short run but the long run. I noticed the parallel with the same teachings from economics as spelled out by Henry Hazlitt.

I dropped a quick note to him, knowing full well of his likely loneliness, and invited him for a meeting. I invited a few others. It was a blessing finally to speak to other sensible people, and his scientific credentials gave us all confidence. Within two weeks and no preparation, we put together a gathering of others in the field of epidemiology plus some journalists. The declaration was written. It was edited in the living room by reading aloud. It was codified and published on a site quickly put together by design technologist Lou Eastman. 

Then the explosion began, not just in the US but all over the world. People were both furious and thrilled depending on which side of the lockdown debate one was on. This was a remarkable thing to watch because I saw the course of ideas fundamentally change in real time. From one small document, a global resistance began rallying not around some extremist dogma but on basic principles of public health and freedom as a precondition for social and market functioning. 

It was then that I realized: the path to fixing the world is perhaps not what I thought it was. It is not about an industrialized movement. It is not about strict dogmas of fine points, infighting within a movement, tedious pedagogy, or even radicalized agitation. It is about basic truth stated when the world seems to have forgotten them. These core truths made the difference because of the strategies we used for communication, their credentialled sources, and how the statement tapped into a deep memory of what good sense in public health feels like. 

I’m under no illusions that this particular strategy and this particular event is repeatable. The challenges are always changing and the needs of the moment are too. The real lesson I take from this is the desperate need of people who want to influence the world to have an entrepreneurial spirit, one that is adaptable, alert to opportunities, a willingness to invest, and the determination to stick it out through every kind of pressure to stop. And like all successful entrepreneurship, it also requires technical skill, discipline, and careful market cultivation. Such is borne of long experience in the world of ideas – entrepreneurship is not something taught in school – and also a burning passion to make a difference. 

4. How ideas travel and realize their results cannot be gamed. 

Historians and social scientists have long speculated about the proper strategy for social change. They examine particular incidents of history and ask the foundational question. How did the Protestant Revolution happen? From where did capitalism come and why did it land and thrive where it did? How did the Bolsheviks rise to power? How did the Prohibitionists come to prevail? What were the means by which marijuana went from illegal narcotic to fully legal weed in so many towns? These are fascinating questions with no consistent or certain answers. 

The reason for this pertains to the unique nature of ideas. They are not like hard widgets or services with supply chains and clear structures of production. Ideas are malleable, infinitely reproducible, invisible, and travel an unpredictable trajectory. There are no aspects to what we call influence that can be gamed. There is no one path or strategy. In addition, the effect of ideas on the human mind is infinitely complex. One person can hear one idea a million times but only truly listen and become convinced on the one-millionth and first time it is heard. The sources of influences are equally diverse. We think teachers are the key but it could be social media, radio, television, or a simple experience in life that triggers the desire to know more. 

There are no limits to the market for a good idea, and no formula that assures it will travel a certain way and land in a particular place. Releasing an idea always takes place in the middle of a metaphorical sandstorm where every grain is another competing idea. The best approach is to build platforms with maximum-possible reach and deploy ideas to networks that find them compelling enough to share publicly or privately, thus expanding the reach bit by bit. In other words, the potential audience for ideas is essentially everyone. 

Too many institutions and movements forget this and instead turn inward with in-fighting, arcane language, and modes of argumentation designed for small cliques of friends and colleagues. It is understandable at one level: people want to speak in ways they feel make a difference, and that means rallying or getting under the skin of people you know personally. But this creates a serious problem. Small marginal movements tend to forget the big picture while obsessing about small controversies within their social circle or, worse, think mainly about their own professional advancement rather than taking intellectual risks. This throttles their effectiveness. 

The friends of liberty need to be prepared to grapple with the unique features of ideas, and not imagine that there is only one way forward. Moreover, the successes of the past (the Great Barrington Declaration as an example) are not necessarily the way forward for the future. A good strategy is borne of a cultivated instinct that acts on intuition, one that is finely honed using a variety of life experiences. It also must avoid very obvious turn-offs: any idea advanced with anger, exhortation, malice, or resentment is already at a disadvantage to that which is inspired by compassion, warmth, generosity, and love. This is especially true for a cause that is as radical as the desire for human freedom to have a durable and primary place in public life. 

5. The motivation to confront evil stems from moral conviction primarily and relies on a relentless focus with strategic considerations.

I’ve noticed through the years working in ideological spaces that despair is a huge problem. Even for the most sincere intellectuals, there are so many barriers to making a difference, it can be discouraging when the results of these efforts are not very apparent. But also from my experience, there is one force that is the most powerful and yet the most neglected one: a willingness to stand up when it counts due to deep moral conviction. It need not always be worn and paraded but it must exist. 

Expediency as a first principle is easily detectable as a grave form of weakness and it can kill any cause. Expediency can also stem from institutional arrangements in which purpose is uncertain, leadership is divided, or leaders are risk-averse. Such problems can make change impossible, whereas a steadfast commitment is indeed capable of bringing about change. Any institution lacking in clear purpose will drift, and its staff and employees will drift with it. 

This moral conviction need not be set against creativity, strategic adaptability, and clever marketing. All these are crucial for good strategy but conviction is the indispensable element. When the war comes, when lockdowns are upon us, when the violation of free speech occurs, when people are not granted their fundamental rights, when policies bump hard against what our intuition tells us is right and true, freedom requires that compelling voices speak out, not later, but now, not with ambiguity but with real precision and conviction. The mystery of influence will never be fully solved but these are the core fundamentals that can never be given up, lest the cause is lost. 

Conclusion 

In 2020 liberty took a huge blow – the likes of which hasn’t been seen for many generations – but it was not finally mortal. The means by which we’ve crawled out of the pit deserve close scrutiny. The cause of human rights is nowhere near being safe. But the ground has been prepared. In all the places where lockdowns have faltered and political and intellectual change have arisen in their stead, we’ve consistently seen one word rise to the top of public rhetoric: freedom. It’s a simple word, much used but rarely understood in all its fullness. To be free is an implausible state of humanity. It is the great exception. When freedom does triumph, and when it does stick as a stable presumption of public life, the results are astonishing but also threatening to established interests and partisans of a thousand other causes. If we can keep in mind the primacy of freedom as an ideal, and let that ideal moor us to all that we think and do, we stand the highest possible chance of success.

He’ll Break Your Leg, and Give You a Crutch

Thanks.”

But she’s seen the science, and has made the decision that on June 30th, the state will be free of this havoc.  And with all the cash she’s received from Trump and Biden, she’s spending as fast as Jerome Powell can hit those computer keys.  Which reminds me what the late Harry Browne said when he was running for President for the Libertarian Party.  When asked about health care, he would say, “What government is good at is breaking your leg, and then handing you a crutch.” 

[….]

Gov. Mills announces COVID-19 state of civil emergency to end June 30

Maine is now free?
Jean Carbonneau:

Lesson: Avoid fake saviours and self-serving healers.

They’re not here to help you. They’re here to help themselves.

1) The Revolt of the Public: An Interview 2) Spadework, Again

If a tiny minority of the millions of people who are in revolt are unwilling to do the work necessary to create an alternative educational system, worldview by worldview, then the establishment will maintain control.

If a tiny minority of the pro-Trump Republicans do not get involved in local politics, then the establishment will maintain control.

The CFR/NWO/Davos establishment prevails because the vast majority of the voters around the world have long found it too expensive to mobilize against it. Now they can mobilize against it. What they cannot do free of charge is this: provide institutional and ideological alternatives to the establishment.

Here are the two rules: (1) You can’t beat something with nothing; (2) there is no such thing as a free lunch.

Talk is cheap. Grousing is cheap. Dreams of political revenge are cheap. The elite within each revolting faction must now put their money where their mouths are. More important, they must now put their time where their mouths are.

Gary North, The Greatest Election Outcome Since 1924, If . . .

I can’t speak for the pro-Trump people.

But I can say a few words for believing Christians: we need to get to work.

Building a Godly civilization is not cheap. It is not for free. It has a price, in time and money, and perhaps pain and loss of face in an explicitly anti-Christian society.

But the goal, the victory, winning the future…. that is definitely worth the price.

One useful tool from North, on a page open to the general public:
Video: My Lecture on How to Protect Christian College Students from Being Picked Off

Democratic Stenographers

No wonder Pulitzer-Prize-winning investigative journalist Glenn Greenwald calls the legacy media “stenographers for the state.” Press coverage of Biden isn’t just soft. It’s the least critical of any president in the past three decades, according to a study by nonpartisan think tank Pew Research Center.

Most of the media will sleep through the Biden years
by Mark Grabowski

Actually, Glenn Greenwald is largely incorrect. After all, Trump was the one in charge of the US Government as President, and the mainstream press was quite hostile to him.

It’s far more correct to consider the mainstream press as Democratic stenographers.1

At times, the Biden administration has been downright hostile to press freedom. Biden continued Trump’s effort to obtain email logs of New York Times reporters to identify their sources. Biden limited media access to border facilities. Journalists must get approval before publishing quotes from Biden officials.  When Biden’s deputy press secretary T.J. Ducklo allegedly made “derogatory and misogynistic comments” to a reporter and threatened to “destroy” her, Biden merely suspended him for a week before he voluntarily resigned following public pressure.

Despite this abuse, journalists’ favoritism can be seen everywhere from how things are covered, what gets covered, and what doesn’t.

The press doesn’t hold Biden accountable. The Associated Press and Politico both ordered reporters not to describe the Mexican border situation as a “crisis,” although Biden himself used the term. And, unlike with Trump, there’s been little media outrage that children remain in cages or that Biden told migrants they’re not welcome here.

Journalists ignore Biden’s blunders. When Biden tripped three times ascending the stairs of Air Force One, major media outlets largely disregarded it. But when Trump slowly walked down a slippery ramp, the media had a feeding frenzy and questioned his health.

The media exaggerate Biden’s popularity. A CBS News poll claimed 85% of viewers approved of Biden’s State of the Union speech, but the annual address this year had the smallest audience in decades, and fact-checkers revealed pollsters significantly oversampled Biden supporters.

Defenders of these double standards argue Trump merited tougher coverage. But that doesn’t explain why journalists have gone so easy on Biden. He’s received less negative coverage in the early going than former Presidents Barack Obama and George W. Bush, both of whom had higher approval ratings during the same period, and former President Bill Clinton, who presided during an incredibly prosperous time.

Most of the media will sleep through the Biden years
by Mark Grabowski

It’s interesting, that the mainstream press is far more interested in fawning over Biden et al than in protecting their own profession.

They are openly become what they have always wanted to be: well-paid progressive propagandists, with acceptance in the right circles. Nothing more.

Recall it was the Washington Post that adopted the slogan “democracy dies in darkness” during Trump’s term. But now the paper and its Beltway brethren are turning the lights off.

Most of the media will sleep through the Biden years
by Mark Grabowski

By 2024, the lights will be off in every mainstream newsroom in the United States.

However, they are not going to get the one-party state they want. The reach and income of the mainstream press continues to decline, and there is no single clear successor for the Better Sort to buy off and corrupt.

They can sleep. We must work.

I recommend local work – religious and anti-poverty, social and small business, and (when everything else is done) political – by the way for Christians: county, town, neighbourhood. If we do well, perhaps some fourth- and third-tier cities by 2030 will be governed by Christian mores, maybe even a low-population state by 2040.

“Politics fourth.” Strengthening the community, insuring that all can freely gain employment, that the poor and the orphans and the widows are going well, and raising the children in the admonition of the Lord, suppressing theft and fraud murder: all these comes before politics.

It’s going to take a generation or three (and a Great Default of the welfare-warfare state!) to turn this ship around. There just isn’t any shortcut to make things faster. But if we work hard for the next two generations or so, the Body of Christ will be in a decent position before the end of this century.

Then, we can finally grow to where we should have been by 1950 or so2, and be the worthy servants God expects us to be.


1It’s a toss-up on whether the press should be seen as Democratic first, or Progressive first. I would argue Democratic-first, as the press is more interested in giving pleasure to power than in ideological purity among the Elite.

It is power and money that matters to the press: ideology is just a tool to separate Us from Them. If the powerful people ignore it, so what? Those of us of a certain age would do well to remember Clinton, his Bimbo explosions, and how eagerly the feminists of the era defended him.

“Gotta keep those abortions coming!”

The Commoners, of course, are expected to Submit and Obey to whatever Progressive dikat crops up, right now. No excuses.

2Can you imagine what would have happened if the Europeans of 1850 turned away from Darwinism, racism, war, statism, lawless atheism, and Imperialism? If they put their energies to the conversion of the Middle East, India, Indonesia, and China?

Or if the Americans took the invention of the cotton gin as a great reason for the ending of the import of slaves, and extend the Rule of Biblical Law to cover everyone – White and Black and Red and Yellow, lives and liberty and property?

I can tell you this: the Christian EuroAmericans would be far wealthier by 1950, far more respected, and would have a good shot at being half the population of Earth.

Being of a sci-fi turn of mind, I would argue that by 2050 the Europeans would have had to turn the Sahara green to feed their population as well, and massive ocean-based aquafarms would have to have been developed. Of course there would be a series of space colonies in near-earth orbit, and probably on the Moon and Mars as well: continued population expansion would have to be up there, even if the earth can hold a population of a few trillion or so.

The joy of dominating the Inferiors would be missing, but there is something to be said for having lots of healthy, morally upright, prosperous children and grandchildren. Instead of wiping out your future with wars and abortions and perversity.

Europe can never get that future back, and China had already destroyed her future: but, just maybe, a repentant America (of all races) can regain our Biblical Birthright.

It’s worth fighting for.

The Limitations of Law

We fail to understand God’s law unless we realize how carefully it limits man. God’s law prevents man from placing too much trust in law, and from becoming a tyrant, by limiting man’s powers of enforcement.

An obvious limitation on the courts of law is the requirements of corroboration: one witness alone cannot convict (Num. 35:30; Deut. 17:6; 19:15). However, a more basic limitation is that many offenses, some very serious, have no penalties which any man or court can impose. For example, tithing is God’s tax; failure to pay the tithe is theft; it is robbing God (Mal. 3:7–12). God Himself imposes very severe penalties on this kind of theft, but He does not call for any man-imposed penalty. Another example: Deuteronomy 22:5 forbids transvestite dress, i.e., the wearing of clothing belonging to the opposite sex, and 1 Timothy 2:9 requires modest apparel of women, but no penalties for disobedience are cited.

God’s law covers every area of life: the family, the church, the state, our vocation, our relationships one to another, the use of the earth, sanitation, sexuality, warfare, boundaries, weights and measures, and all things else. The Lord makes very clear the curses and blessings He places on disobedience (Deut. 28; Lev. 26, etc.). His government is total: we can never, for a moment, step outside of God’s law and government. There is not a neutral corner or atom in all of creation. God is totally God, and His government and law are total, covering all things. At every point in our lives, we are face to face with the living God, in all things accountable to Him, and totally His creatures and servants.

Man, however, is not God, nor can he play god without being guilty of the great temptation of the evil one. Original sin is precisely this fact, the desire to be as God, to determine for ourselves what constitutes good and evil, and to rule all things totally. Among Nietzsche’s manuscripts, after his death, was found a slip of paper on which he had written these words: “Since the old God has been abolished, I am prepared to rule the world.” This is the meaning of humanism’s inescapable totalitarianism. Total government is a necessity, and everything in man requires it. If there is no God to provide it, then man must supply it. More accurately, when man rebels against God’s total sovereignty and government, he replaces it with his own claim to total sovereignty and government.

The Limitations of Law
By R. J. Rushdoony

I grow tired of lawless, unrestricted tyrants.

The rest of the world will weary of their destructive incompetence as well.

But if the world doesn’t understand how we got into this fix in the first place, we will continue to merely replace one set of tyrants with another.

It’s time to place limits on the power of Man, and recognize the holy authority of God.

Not only in reality (where this is already true!) but in our laws and our culture, as well.

God’s law, by reserving, in one area after another, the right of enforcement to God alone, severely limits the power of all human forms of government. Neither church, nor state, nor any other human agency is empowered to play God. Moreover, we do not gain in holiness by becoming “stricter” than God: we gain only in presumptuous sin. God alone is God: He does not delegate His throne nor His sovereign lawmaking power to any human being or agency. To become “stricter” than God’s law, as one pastor boasted to me of being, is to imply a moral defect in God and is blasphemy.

God’s law thus allows man many areas of freedom to obey or disobey without man-imposed penalties. The result is a great freedom for man to sin or to obey than most man-made institutions believe is wise. Certainly, church and state have alike worked to limit the freedom God allows.

One critic of Biblical law has declared to me that any strict adherence in every realm to God’s order would be “disastrous,” first, because in a few areas God’s law is marked by an “undue severity,” as witness the death penalty for adultery. (The family being God’s basic institution, treason in the Bible is adultery; there is no treason with respect to the state.) Second, in most areas, Biblical law would produce “anarchy,” because no penalties can be enforced by man in any strict reading thereof.

From the standpoint of Scripture, God’s rule is not anarchy but justice and freedom. Redemption is not by rules and regulation; salvation is not by law. It is by God’s sovereign grace through Jesus Christ. The redeemed man lives a life of faith and obedience in the Spirit and in terms of the enscriptured Word. Our liberty in Christ is from the bondage or slavery of sin and the penalty of death, and it is a deliverance also from fallen man’s way of salvation, a total government by the words of law, man-made law.

If we take any law of God and alter it, or go beyond it, we too become humanistic. We “correct” God as gods over God, and we limit and finally destroy man’s freedom under God.

he Limitations of Law
By R. J. Rushdoony

God’s Law ordains liberty.

It’s about time we got our birthright back.

COVID Again: June 13, 2021

Or, COVID Restrictions, Masks, and Face Shields as Modern Superstition

From Tom Woods, Warning: good COVID news

This is a bit of a potpourri issue. Item #1 is crazy California, but by the end you’ll see how the rest are all good.

(1) If you want to make sense of the various COVID restrictions, especially the insane ones that make no sense and will clearly do nothing to keep anyone “safe,” this general principle seems to work every time:

Forget trying to find “science” in these restrictions. Imagine instead that the principle is “curtail or eliminate things that bring people joy, and demand things that cause them pain or grave inconvenience.” That principle, rather than “science,” appears to explain every restriction I’ve seen.

I just encountered another example of this.

I’m taking a quick trip to southern California with my 11-year-old daughter next week so I’ve been trying to figure out, in light of the ongoing reopening, what is available for us to do while there.

She’s never been to a drive-in movie, so I was considering that.

When I got to the website of one such theatre, I was met with this: “In accordance with L.A. County guidelines, double features are not permitted.”

Evidently double features — performed while you’re completely isolated in the car — are a driver of infection!

I give up trying to figure out how even the most superstitious person can believe this stuff.

(2) Speaking of superstitious, here’s New York’s lieutenant governor two days ago visiting a restored 1924 carousel on the Buffalo waterfront:

Think of the lives she saved by wearing a mask on an empty carousel! Inanimate horses must be especially vulnerable to the variants.

(3) On the last day of May let’s look back to the CDC’s warning of a COVID surge because of the “variant” bogeyman. Since that prediction, cases are down by just about 50%:

From Tom Woods, WaPo stealthily edits headline 15 months later

Joe Biden might wish he’d never said that thing about the repeal of mask mandates being “neanderthal thinking,” given that those states have done no worse than any others, but since no reporter has challenged him on it, he’s gotten a pass.

In case you’re curious, here’s what the graph looks like:

And one last thing: one of my friends just reminded us, given the recent panic over the “Indian variant,” about what happened after the allegedly devastating UK variant became dominant here in the United States:

Although normality is being restored here and there, we all know people who are clinging to doomsday living for dear life. So the craziness has its own set of variants.

From Tom Woods, The Fauci Emails

Well, everyone is talking about the emails.

You know the ones I mean: the Dr. Fauci emails obtained via a Freedom of Information Act request.

I’m going through them to see what exactly they tell us that we didn’t know already, and I’ll be doing tomorrow’s episode of the Tom Woods Show on the subject.

(The show, remember, is the key thing I do; this newsletter is but a pale approximation of the episodes I release every weekday.)

Now when I say everyone is talking about them, I’m exaggerating a bit.

According to Tom Elliott of the Grabien media service, as of ten hours ago, when Tom posted this, here are the statistics regarding the time devoted to the Fauci emails:

FOX News Channel: 116 mentions; 3 hours and 48 minutes of coverage
CNN: 1 mention; 28 seconds of coverage
MSNBC: 1 mention; 5 seconds of coverage

The Biden White House came to the defense of Fauci without addressing any of the particulars in the emails. White House press secretary Jen Psaki said today, “The president and the administration feel that Dr. Fauci has played an incredible role in getting the pandemic under control, being a voice to the public throughout the course of the pandemic.”

Yahoo News added this, “Fauci has long been a lightning rod for criticism in the culture war around COVID because of his advocacy for mask wearing, among other measures to combat the virus.”

Notice that Yahoo simply assumes that mask wearing combats the virus, thereby making it appear that critics of Fauci must perversely favor the spread of the virus.

I especially like how the devastation of millions of people’s livelihoods, savings, and physical and mental health is subsumed under the anodyne phrase “other measures to combat the virus.”

For this topic, stay tuned for episode #1911 of the Tom Woods Show.

Meanwhile, some great news, which as usual nobody is celebrating: the United States just hit the lowest COVID case numbers since late March 2020 — and since we’re testing five times more now than we were then, the news is even better:

As long as we’re on good news, here are two items for you:

(1) By March 2021, Census Bureau data showed that the percentage of K-12 students being homeschooled had risen from 3.3 percent before the COVID fiasco to all the way to 11.1 percent. That’s at least a silver lining to the horrific ordeal of 2020.

As you know, I’m partial to the Ron Paul Curriculum, since I created 400 videos on history and government for it, and because in addition to the standard subjects we also teach skills that students need but rarely get in school: how to manage money, how to be an effective public speaker, and how to run a small business, among others.

Join the Ron Paul Curriculum through my link and I’ll throw in some great bonuses, including a signed copy of my New York Times bestseller The Politically Incorrect Guide to American History. My link: RonPaulHomeschool.com.

(2) I’m throwing a huge party for normal people, in the form of the 2000th Tom Woods Show episode live event in Orlando, Florida. It costs nothing to attend. This event is my gift to you.

From Tom Woods, CDC pretends adolescents in danger and need you know what

Perhaps you’ve noticed that in recent days there’s been a hysterical drive to make it appear that hospitalizations among children aged 12 to 17 are on some kind of unique rise (with the not particularly subtle subtext that the vaccination of people in this age group is suddenly very urgent).

I am sure that without even looking into the details, you knew this was nonsense.

We have too much experience with hysterical claims like these not to smell a rat.

And you were right.

One of my friends, who helped design my COVID charts quiz, debunked it. I am sharing the debunking, complete with charts, with you.

Here goes:

“The latest CDC MMWR (Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report) study released today is being used by major media outlets to suggest COVID hospitalizations are rising in 12-17 year old children — except they aren’t. The CDC’s own data contradicts this. The CDC cherry-picked dates in their study to push a narrative.

“First, let’s look at the time they cut off their study: April 24th. Based on the graph below, you do see increased hospitalization rates in 12-17 year olds from March to April 24th:

Coincidentally, April 24th was also when hospitalizations peaked and declined for these age groups. Why did the CDC end their study right at this point, I wonder?

“‘Rising hospitalizations’ also misses very important context – hospitalizations were rising in all age groups around this time frame in the spring — even the most-vaccinated cohort (> 65) — and at faster rates. Yet they use this study to justify why teen vaccinations are needed.”

(TW note: In case you can’t see the key in the graph below, the orange line on the top is 65 and over, the blue line is the overall number, and that dashed line at the bottom that barely registers at all is the terrible apocalypse of hospitalizations among the 12-17 age group that is supposed to make their vaccinations urgent.)

“Something in this MMWR study that is worth mentioning, though: almost HALF (172 out of 376) of ‘COVID’ hospitalizations in this age group were likely there for something other than COVID — further supporting the claim that child COVID hospitalization numbers are inflated.

“Additionally, of the 172 children admitted to the hospital, but not for COVID, over 44% were there for psychiatric care. This seems like a pretty alarming number, but we’d need to see what the baseline is for psychiatric admissions of adolescents.

“It’s becoming increasingly obvious the CDC is not an unbiased, agenda-free scientific organization. Just a month ago it was found they let teachers unions influence school reopening guidance. Their reputation rightfully continues to quickly deteriorate.”

From Tom Woods, Another lying COVID liar caught red handed, deletes Twitter account

First, an additional note from yesterday, when I exploded the nonsense about the adolescents supposedly seeing a spike in hospitalizations. If you missed that one, read it. It’s a reminder of the kind of lies these lying liars tell.

Yesterday a nurse in Augusta, Georgia, who has spread unfounded fear in the past, posted a Tweet saying that a whole bunch of adolescents were in her hospital with COVID and were being treated with ventilators.

My friend Eric then pointed out that there is a grand total of two COVID patients in the entire Augusta hospital system right now, so the story had to be false.

Suddenly, our nurse locked her Tweets so the world couldn’t read them.

Why are people like this?

Early on, back in March 2020, Michigan physician Dr. Patrick Wiater claimed that his “ICU in the hospital is full of young adults on ventilators fighting for their lives.”

The hospital then issued a correction:

From Tom Woods, Another “mitigation measure” they now admit is pointless

Now it’s the plexiglass barriers.

Anyone with half a brain knew these things were stupid.

Joseph Allen of the Harvard School of Public Health had been saying from the beginning that the virus was airborne, and that plexiglass shields weren’t going to stop tiny floating droplets.

Only last month did the CDC fully acknowledge that the virus was airborne.

“We spent a lot of time and money focused on hygiene theater,” Allen said.

Not a single study has found these barriers to do a bit of good; if anything, by interfering with ventilation, too much plexiglass has even been found to be slightly detrimental.

Epidemiologist Shira Doron of Tufts Medical Center, while admitting that “there’s no research” in support of the use of plexiglass barriers, insisted on the principle: “If it might help, and it makes sense, and it doesn’t hurt, then do it.”

It’s been on that basis that all kinds of crazy and stupid measures have been forced on us that practically everyone has to know don’t actually do anything.

It calls to mind the anecdotal evidence we read about regarding people and masks. Even though they’ve been vaccinated and the CDC says they can take the masks off, people seem to keep them on for purely irrational reasons: to signal that they’re not Republican, to “show respect,” because everyone is doing it, and so on.

If there’s any “science” in any of this, it isn’t exactly obvious.

From Tom Woods, Guess which lunatic is releasing a book

Well, one of the worst hysterics is publishing a book.

It’s Preventable: The Inside Story of How Leadership Failures, Politics and Selfishness Doomed the U.S. Coronavirus Response, by Andy Slavitt, former Biden COVID adviser.

You can tell from the title: it’ll be the usual, predictable nonsense.

If only we hadn’t been “selfish,” and if only our leaders had done X or Y, blah blah blah.

Andy, we did do X and Y. The signs of the wreckage are everywhere.

These people live in a dream world where we implemented the principles of the Great Barrington Declaration. No, Andy, we did what you wanted. The closed businesses, the despair, the ruined lives — the evidence is all around you.

There is zero correlation between lockdown stringency and health outcomes anywhere.

But here’s some correlation for you: not one country with less than 40 percent of its people overweight had a problem with COVID. Not one.

Every single such country had a death rate lower than 10 in 100,000.

There isn’t a lot that the state can do about that, so politicians rarely even bother pointing it out. All the plexiglass barriers in the world, and all the pretending that walking to your table in a restaurant without a mask is going to give someone COVID, can’t overcome that.

And remember, when Andy was asked point-blank on MSNBC about why places that ignored his advice were doing no worse than those who were ruining people’s lives by following it to the letter, he had no answer.

I’m not exaggerating. He could not explain why his advice made no difference at all.

The entirety of his answer was: “Look, there’s so much of this virus that we think we understand, that we think we can predict, that’s just a little bit beyond our explanation.”

And this guy thinks he’s in a position to write a book lecturing all of us about everything we did wrong.

I’m waiting for the Scott Atlas book. That one will tell us what we need to know about what really went on, and the arbitrariness of the “guidance” we were given. (Really, how can any thinking person not snicker at the phrase “CDC guidance” at this point?) And yes, such a book is coming, as Stanford’s Jay Bhattacharya told me on the Tom Woods Show.