Mainly from Tom Woods, with a cameo from Jordan Schachtel.
Again, my words are in bold.
Crawling With Fear, Mask or No Mask
On a related note, Professor Don Boudreaux of George Mason University, on his Cafe Hayek blog, shares this email from a reader:
Experience of one of my daughters with her long time friend (LTF) this weekend, which is very disturbing.
We own a second house in Aiken, South Carolina. This daughter is an equestrian. SC is now fully open and Aiken lifted all mask mandates just this past week (thank God). With college classes over, my daughter and her long time friend made a weekend trip there. Sounds like fun, right?
My daughter made dinner reservations, and another friend invited them to see live music outside. It is important to note that my daughters has one shot of the vaccine, and that her LTF not only had COVID, but is fully vaccinated, and the friend they are meeting had COVID – and they are all under 25, so already not at great risk. They are about to enter the restaurant when LTF has a panic attack, starts crying, and declares that she cannot enter the restaurant because people are dining inside. LTF then declares that she also cannot go to the music event because there will be crowds there. LTF has become so terrified of other human beings that, despite being immunized, she cannot fathom living life normally. LTF is convinced that all the non-mask wearing people are going to infect her, and despite the fact that she, her parents, and her grandparents are all vaccinated, she is going to carry the illness to them and kill them. This is mental illness. This is what we’ve done to our young people. It is heartbreaking.
After sharing a story of his own, Boudreaux concludes with this:
Despite nearly four months of steadily, and often dramatically, falling case counts in Virginia – despite steadily falling hospitalization numbers for Covid – despite falling Covid death rates – despite 50 percent of Virginians now having at least one vaccine shot and 38 percent being fully vaccinated, the government of this State which was home to Patrick Henry, George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and James Madison officially advises citizens to double mask and to worry about “new variants of Covid-19.”
This attitude is deranged.
Well, at least a good section of today’s youth are psychologically crippled due to the 24 x 7 x 365 fear preached from every mainstream source for the last year and a half.
But today’s Established has always despised the young.
It Was Always Politics
Right from the get-go.
The Times is out with an article showing that the CDC has grossly exaggerated the numbers when it comes to outdoor transmission. The CDC has been saying that less than 10 percent occurs outdoors, but the Times says this is like saying that sharks kill fewer than 20,000 swimmers per year, when the exact figure is about 150.
In fact, even though the unscientific crazies glare at you when you walk by them unmasked, the Times reports that “there is not a single documented Covid infection anywhere in the world from casual outdoor interactions, such as walking past someone on a street or eating at a nearby table.”
Before you start thinking maybe the press is becoming reasonable (I know you weren’t actually thinking that), Raw Story is out with an article called, “The data is in — and it’s damning: States led by GOP governors had higher COVID-19 death rates in 2020.”
In an article like that, I bet you’d expect them to compare the COVID numbers from one group of states with the numbers from another group, for the calendar year 2020.
They compared the numbers for a three-month window, which (by what I’m sure was pure coincidence) happened to be a period in which blue states appeared to be doing somewhat better.
In the graph below, the shaded region is the period Raw Story covered for its article on “death rates in 2020”:
Was the media concerned about safety? Health? Freedom?
They were always focused on politics, and nothing else.
If Salvation is by the Right Kind of Law, as Determined by the Best People – as any Greek Philosopher could have told you – why would they care about anything else?
“Power, not Truth, is the Key.”
Take The Quiz
Welcome to the COVID Charts Quiz!
In 2020 people were told that business closures, stay-at-home orders, lockdowns, and mask mandates were necessary to slow the spread of SARS-CoV-2.
Some people expected that places where these measures were absent or implemented half-heartedly would have drastically worse results.
With more than a year of these measures behind us, it’s time to evaluate the results.
Preliminary academic studies have already been published, and they deserve our attention. This quiz is intended for the layman, because if these radical measures were truly justified the results should be clear and unambiguous in the data.
So let’s take a look.
The possibility that the media cares to be held accountable for all the destructive scaremongering it enjoyed (and raked in big bucks for, and pushed Trump out of office with) is zero.
Let’s see how the targets of the relentless scare propaganda handle it.
The people who know that the media complex was always just a pack of politically-driven liars will remain as they are.
And the people who love the liberal-left position will continue to repeat the media mantra, truth or falsity be damned.
Statistical Red Herrings
Yesterday I released my COVID charts quiz, whose point was to show that it’s impossible to figure out which places ruined people’s lives over COVID and which didn’t.
One person wrote to say: my friend is complaining that the quiz doesn’t take population density into account (even though the quiz often compares places that are right next to each other).
So let’s take this opportunity to dispense with this objection once and for all.
Here are population density and health outcomes graphed together. As you can see, the results are completely random:
On another matter, yesterday the graph below was posted on Twitter, showing the results for the states allegedly following The Science, and the so-called neanderthal states. Well, how about that:
A self-described math teacher, evidently not knowing what “per 100K” means, claimed the graph didn’t account for population:
So I responded:
“Now that you know you’re wrong, I guess you have to admit that the chart is a problem for your position. If it didn’t pose a problem for you, you wouldn’t have been so fast to try to correct it. Now that you know you’re wrong, how are you changing your views?”
You will be shocked to learn that I have not received a response.
Well, maybe not so shocked.
- There are people who are interested in the truth.
- And there are people who are interested in gaining Elite approval.
Remember: “Elite approval results in safety, acceptance, and perhaps even promotion and raises. ‘Truth’ on the other hand, is whatever the Elite says it is.”
Our Betters in Washington Flick the Off Switch on COVID Mania
Now, the somewhat level-headed individuals in the Biden Administration have been seeking a way out of COVID Mania for quite some time. While the power grabs related to “the pandemic” have helped the people in charge accumulate power (particularly maniacal state governors) and install an authoritarian Safety Regime, the pandemic policies have also manifested several crises that threatened the integrity of the entire system. The Biden Administration is dealing with countless domestic and international crises, in addition to a sinking economy, among many other impending bubbles and catastrophes. They needed a way out as soon as humanly possible. COVID Mania had so many residual effects that it began to threaten the integrity of the entire system. They needed an exit strategy, so they simply asserted their insider privilege, moved the political appointees and the federal bureaucracy into order, and switched off COVID Mania like it was no big deal.
Could Donald Trump have pulled this off in the same way? I’m not so sure. It’s important to understand how Washington works when someone who threatens the administrative state comes into town, as opposed to someone who is supported by the federal bureaucracy.
The federal bureaucracy is overwhelmingly liberal and conformist when it comes to supporting the power centers in Washington. In the 2016 elections, 95 percent of political donations went to Hillary Clinton, who, like Joe Biden, is very much the ultimate D.C. insider.
Unlike Schachel, I would not use the terms “insider” and “outsider”. I prefer something more like “The Better Sort” and “Commoner Filth”.
Mask as Virtue Signal
From Tom Woods again, The Mask Dead Enders
Masks have been taking a beating.
First it was the sudden Establishment consensus that outdoor mask mandates had no scientific merit and should be repealed.
Then it was the CDC saying that the vaccinated don’t need to wear masks.
Then, from this foundation, big stores like Trader Joe’s, Walmart, and Costco all announced that the vaccinated would not be required to wear masks in their stores — and added that they wouldn’t be verifying anyone’s vaccination status.
And yet in many places mask wearing is still overwhelmingly prevalent.
The wearers either don’t believe their vaccines work, or they suddenly don’t trust the CDC, or who knows what.
Or they’ve simply been so terrorized and propagandized that they can’t think clearly.
Or the mask is a symbol of “science” and moral superiority, and they can’t give that up.
The other day on Twitter someone asked people: why do you care if people are wearing masks outdoors? They’ve just been through a mass death event. Let them do what they want.
Well, of course I’ll let people do stupid, pointless things if they want.
But here’s why I care:
(1) If people did a rain dance after a long drought I wouldn’t say, “Can you blame them? It’s been a long drought.”
(2) Many of the people still wearing masks, especially outdoors, are the very ones who spent the past year lecturing the rest of us about science. When they themselves act in defiance of science, it rightly makes us question what their true motivations had been all along.
(3) Masks don’t seem to do anything. The “studies” purporting to show that they do either involve arbitrary dates (and thus exclude huge spikes that would be embarrassing to have to explain away) or are just models, in which the model assumes from the start that masks work.
What we know in reality is that we have chart after chart after chart of countries around the world in which, just before a massive spike, some headline read, “How Country X Defeated the Coronavirus,” and the story generally involves masks. After the spike, no journalist revisits the issue and says, “Maybe we were being too simplistic when we attributed country X’s success to masks. The Florida panhandle is mostly unmasked, and their health outcomes are no different from those in the rest of the state. Mandates have ended in numerous states, with no ill effects.
(4) Human communication involves more than words (and even words can be hard to make out with masks on). Masks disrupt the full spectrum of human communication, thereby opening the door to suspicion and misunderstanding.
(5) Are we seriously so debased that I actually have to argue in favor of seeing people’s faces?
(6) Infants and toddlers need facial expressions for their proper development. We all know about the studies involving infants and a mother who is expressionless as opposed to a mother who is smiling. Infants and toddlers today are growing up in what must seem like a soulless dystopia.
(7) If you’re wearing a mask outside in particular, you’re either impervious to evidence or you’re making some kind of statement, and neither possibility is particularly flattering. Nobody would do such a thing without at least a vague sense that it’s scientifically justified. So that means they almost certainly look at my unmasked face and assume scientific ignorance. I don’t particularly care for having that assumption made about me.
At first many of us wondered how the politicians would stand down from all these crazy restrictions and requirements. But now an equally compelling question is whether substantial segments of the American public itself will be willing to ditch these things.
I suspect the masks will come off in large numbers once a critical mass is reached. In other words, the remainder will fall quickly because I think many of those people complied in the first place out of a desire to do what was popular. As soon as masks cease to be popular, this group of people will rip them off pretty darn quickly.
Well, until the next mass-media induced mania kicks in.
Some People Just Want the Safety of Chains. Others Just Want to Chain Others.
Or, from an old 80s song,
“Some of them want to abuse you. Some of them want to be abused.”
I’ve had a few people say: enough is enough, Woods. On to another topic.
And I have indeed covered other topics. But just when I consider letting up, I get a news item like this, via Alex Berenson:
“The Canadians have lost their minds. Ontario has 14.7 million people. 1 in 11000 is hospitalized for Covid. Cases are plunging, vaccinations soaring. Yet Ontario has a lockdown as strict as any US state had LAST APRIL. No ‘nonessential’ retail, playgrounds closed, etc.
“And the premier, Doug Ford, just EXTENDED the lockdown — while promising if his subjects are good sheeple and hit vaccination targets, they may get 10-person outdoor gatherings in mid-June.”
The UK has been saying they’ll reopen on June 21 — an already absurd date — but that they can push that date back if not enough people are vaccinated.
Meanwhile, all of Europe has to pretend that Florida doesn’t exist, ignore the American states that have dropped their mask mandates with no ill effect, and not mention the large events that have recently been held in the U.S. without having led to any problems at all.
Earlier this week I released my COVID Charts Quiz, which asks people to identify, on unlabeled charts, which state is the one with the heavier restrictions, and other questions of that kind. It’s impossible to know the answer because of course the results have been completely random.
I’ve received feedback from a handful of hysterics to the effect that I’m not taking into account this or that trivial thing differentiating the various states I’m comparing, even though a lot of the charts involve neighboring states that are demographically identical.
But think about it.
Had you asked hysterics in April 2020 whether in May 2021 they’d be able to distinguish the locked-down states from the open ones by looking at their results on a graph, they would have said absolutely yes. They would have been sure that the differences between the two would be extremely obvious.
The fact that today the graphs are in fact so similar that they’re reduced to laughable (and invalid) nitpicking means they were wrong. You know and I know that in 2020 they were absolutely certain that the states that ignored them were going to be overwhelmed by COVID, no caveats about it, and that this devastation would be clear and unmistakable on any chart.
And now they see the charts, can’t tell the difference, and have to make up phony explanations as to why.
It’s not about Science. It’s not about testing the hypothesis, or experimentation and research, or falsification, or field testing and measuring verifiable results.
And it certainly isn’t about the Health of the People.
It’s about Power.
“I tell you what to do, and you do it.”
Restrictions are falling left and right at this point.
Vegas casinos are back to 100%, and with no mask requirements. Huge sporting events, and even concerts, are coming back (Foreigner performed in Orlando last week, for example).
And yet, even though the scolds’ predictions of “superspreader” effects failed to materialize from the Super Bowl, the college football national championship, or that packed Texas Rangers game we were all warned about, they’re still predicting it, and they’re still wrong.
A couple of examples, courtesy of Ian Miller.
Back on May 8 the Atlanta Braves had their first full stadium since all this started. Nobody was asked about vaccination status.
Sportswriter Peter King wrote on Twitter, above a picture of the event:
“570,615 deaths. Nothing to see there.”
Since King is a mainstream sports journalist, he still — still! — thinks the Fauci “mitigation measures” actually do something, and defying them leads to mass death.
Well, two weeks later, here’s the massive carnage caused by that event:
Here’s something else from two weeks ago: the Canelo Alvarez fight in Texas, a fight attended by over 73,000 people. No indoor boxing event in history has been attended by more people. Nobody checked vaccination status, and not many masks.
Let’s check in on the devastation this event surely caused:
The ongoing wickedness in Canada and Europe is predicated on pretending that these things aren’t happening. They have to pretend that mass events haven’t been going on in the U.S. without any discernible effect.
You’d think the populations of those countries would be demanding an explanation as to why they’re still locked down, but, well, I guess they didn’t value living as much as you and I do.
Despite the groupthink in entertainment, academia, and (most of) government, there’s a clear momentum in favor of restoring normality.
But the long-term effects of what’s been done to us are many, and severe.
Now that they’ve discovered how compliant and unquestioning the general public truly is, who knows what the politicos and what we laughingly call the “public health” establishment will get up to next.
That’s the real story.
There’s going to be another power-grab by Our Betters, and the Right Kind of People will back them to the hilt.
If I wasn’t so confident that the West is going to go quite bankrupt – and so, no more money to blow on massive Command & Control experiments — I would be certain that the enslavers would win.
Certainly they would win, if the majority had their way.
“As long as the dog treats keep coming.”
It’s to Keep You Safe
Last month you may have seen a video featuring a Georgia mother named Courtney Ann Taylor demanding that the local school board drop the ridiculous mask requirement.
My friend Tom Elliott, whom I got to know when I used to fill in on Peter Schiff’s old radio show (Tom was the producer), spread the video around via his Grabien media service.
YouTube decided to take it down.
As Tom described YouTube’s response to the video, “Mothers having opinions about whether their children should be forced into masks ‘violates our community guidelines’ and our ‘medical misinformation policy.'”
Nothing in what she said contradicts what the World Health Organization says about masking children under 12. Here are her exact words:
Every month I come here and I hear the same thing: social, emotional health. If you truly mean that, you would end the mask requirement tonight. Tonight! This is not March 2020 anymore. We have three vaccines, every adult in the state of Georgia that wants that vaccine is eligible to get it right now, and every one of us knows that young children are not affected by this virus. They’re not. And that’s a blessing.
But as the adults, what have we done with that blessing? We’ve showed it to the side and we said, “We don’t care, you’re still going to wear a mask on your face every day, 5- and 6-year-olds. You still can’t play together on the playground like normal children, 7- and 8-year-olds. We don’t care. We’re still going to force you to carry a burden that was never yours to carry.” Shame on us! My 6-year-old looks at me every month before I come here, she says, “Are you going to tell them tonight? Tell them I don’t want to wear this anymore.” And I say, “Baby, it’s not time to fight that battle yet.” I try to explain that there’s so many things, that it’s April 15th, 2021, and it’s time. Take these masks off my child.
And I know what I’m going to be met with: but Ms. Taylor, the CDC. We did not vote for people at the CDC. We did create leaders who do create policy. We elected the five of you. We chose you to make difficult decisions for our children. We chose you to make decisions that would be in our children’t best interest. And forcing 5, 6, 7, 8 and 9-year-old little children to cover their noses and their mouths, where they breathe, for 7 hours a day, every day for the last nine months, for a virus that you know doesn’t affect them, that is not in their best interest. This has to stop. Defend our children. My 6-year-old can’t come up here and say this. It has to stop. Take these off our children.
YouTube took that video down to keep everyone “safe.”
As Tom Elliott says:
Parents are allowed to express opinions over whether their children should be forced into wearing masks. Parents’ perspectives are a valid part of the public debate. This mother does not represent herself as a doctor or medical expert.
Incidentally the WHO agrees with this mother that there is currently no scientific basis for compelling all children to wear masks indoors/outdoors as a measure to stop the spread of Covid. So YouTube’s “medical misinformation” claim is entirely false.
I appealed, noting there’s nothing in the WHO guidance this mother is contradicting (supposedly the basis of the video being taken offline). YouTube has already rejected the appeal. Apparently the platform must remain “safe” from concerned mothers:
It’s not about truth… It’s not about actual medical science.
It’s about making sure that certain people feel safe.
Christians are expected to know the difference between actual safety, and comforting lies… the kind of lies that are far more dangerous and fatal than any uncomfortable truth.
Note that, in this case, the lying involved is the lie of omission. Christians are going to have to sharpen their use of logic and observation to dig out that kind of corruption!