No Minister

Archive for the ‘Healthcare’ Category

Has something happened here in NZ?

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I ask because I encountered some news about this country while doing my morning reading of US blogs and news sites.

Something about all of NZ going to “Red” – whatever the hell that means. The person writing the post was laughing about it, which I thought rather mean but then they’re living in Florida so understandable.

Anyway, my kids will fill me in on the news, which they get from their friends. Don’t know the details yet but since the criteria for what we’re about to enter has been ignored (health system under massive strain) then I figure all the prescribed restrictions also mean shit and we just live as if we’re in L4 Lockdown again?

I must admit that at times like this I’m very grateful for the lifestyle I’ve been leading for some years now, in that it makes very little difference to me. Oh well. Onward with Omicron.

Make sure you’re N95 mask is properly fitted at all times (especially when you’re outside), carry hand sanitiser at all times – and get your second booster shot asap.

Just a reminder of what all these health and safety precautions are saving us from, courtesy of the CDC in the USA.

Written by Tom Hunter

January 23, 2022 at 1:20 pm

Sad Stats and a world of unending fear

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Perhaps scary would be a better word. These being from the USA: Ten Statistics to Ruin Your Day.

Obviously there are pragmatic things like the $28 trillion debt of the USA and the increasing problems of getting military recruits because of obesity, other health problems and 10% of the pool (17-24 years old) having criminal records.

But these were the ones that I found sad:

1. The nuclear family fades in the USA:
According to a Pew Research study, the United States has the highest number of children living in single-parent households.  Almost one-fourth (23%) of children in the U.S. under the age of 18 live with one parent and no other adult, which is the highest in the world.

3. Tens of millions can’t read:
More than 30 million adults in the United States cannot read, write, or do basic math above a third-grade level.

5. We’re not having kids:
America’s total fertility rate fell in 2020 to just 1.67 births per female, the lowest in history, and well below the replacement level of 2.1.

Given the fading of the family that last is not surprising. But then there is perhaps the saddest of all – which feeds right back in the 1st.

8. But we’re lonely: A poll of 1,254 adults aged 18 and older found that 27 percent of Millennials have no close friends, 25 percent have no “acquaintances,” and 22 percent — or 1 in 5 — have no buddies at all.

Lindsay Mitchell addressed some aspect of this in her post, “Millennial Fetal Contentment”:

When enough Millennials reached young adulthood in the 2010s they cried out in pain. The real world wasn’t like the highly structured environments of their daycare centers or schools. Suicide, self-harm, depression, deviancy, drugs, self-mutilation (eg tatooing,) shock-hair colouring, and piercings became epidemic. When enough young Millennials had the chance to be an influence they promoted ‘Safe Spaces’ and Feminism and Gender Pronouns and Climate Change Catastrophisation and Racism to try to change their uncomfortable world into a place they felt at home.

When the world hurts you, and especially when you find you can’t control everything about even your small part of that world, you withdraw from it. The online world has the best safety since it is the most controllable by you. Lindsay finishes her piece with this:

The Millennial dream is everyone else’s nightmare.

She means in terms of control but what those stats above tell us is that another nightmare will be upon us before long where we don’t have enough young(ish) people, especially enough capable people, to power the world forward.

There are more than a few in the West who perhaps rather like that idea.

This slow destruction started decades ago:

In March of 1970, Anne Bernays penned a piece titled “What Are You Supposed to Do if You Like Children?”[1]  Her target was the Women’s Liberation Movement that was ushering in ideas that “men are sexual vampires, [and] marriage is stunting and exploitative.”

Those women who are “willing to acknowledge the remotest emotional obligation to husband and children, especially to children during their fragile first five or six years of life … can’t summon the time, physical energy, and psychic equipment to do two jobs simultaneously.  You can’t split a woman’s life down the middle and expect each half, like a severed worm, to go happily crawling off, to survive and function in perfect health.”

Yet that is exactly what has been demanded of most women as they valiantly try to raise a family and work outside their homes.  Or they simply decide that children are not worth their time or effort, or some other agency is left to the care and development of their children.

What I find incredible is that this feminism I grew up with in the 1980’s, that every one of my female friends supported, has not made women happier, as it was supposed to do.

And now women are being erased from many spaces by the transgender movement, to the horror of feminists, even though it was their ideas that started the ball rolling:

… it was Shulamith Firestone in the 1970s  who wrote that it has “become necessary to free humanity from the tyranny of its biology” and “eliminate the sex distinction itself [so that] genital differences between human beings would no longer matter culturally.”  Ultimately, Firestone asserted that the “blood tie of the mother to the child would eventually be severed,” and the “disappearance of motherhood” would follow.

Wish fulfilled, as the article points out by noting the steady legalisation of eliminating or marginalising oppressive words like father, mother, parents, son, daughter, and so forth: replaced by “gender-neutral language”. And the “legal” aspect is nasty, as this article noted:

Whereas the gay rights movement was about demanding more freedom from the state for people to determine their sex lives unconstrained by the law, the transgender movement demands the opposite: it calls for recognition and protection from the state in the form of intervention to regulate the behaviour of those outside of the identity group. Whereas in the past, to be radical was to demand greater freedom from the state and institutional authority, today to be radical is to demand restrictions on free expression in the name of preventing offence.

Exactly. With force of law.

Going back to the sad stats of the Millennials, many of whom are driving the Woke movement, the question must arise of how this has been affected by our two-year Pandemic Panic? There have been a couple of occasions where huge blackouts in New York City have led to baby booms nine months later, but I’ve yet to see the same from our lockdowns anywhere in the Western world. What’s different this time aside from a longer period of “nothing else to do”? Over at the NYT, David Brooks does not have an answer to any of this but points out that:

Not only is reckless driving on the rise, Yglesias pointed out, but the number of altercations on airplanes has exploded, the murder rate is surging in cities, drug overdoses are increasing, Americans are drinking more, nurses say patients are getting more abusive, and so on and so on. … Teachers are facing a rising tide of disruptive behavior. …

What the hell is going on? The short answer: I don’t know. I also don’t know what’s causing the high rates of depression, suicide and loneliness that dogged Americans even before the pandemic and that are the sad flip side of all the hostility and recklessness I’ve just described.

Well the massive increase in the murder rate is down to the sort of Democrat cities that Brooks loves, the hangovers from the Antifa/Burn Loot Murder riots of 2020, and idiot theories of law enforcement. But the rest of it probably has a lot to do with the response of TPTB to Chinese Xi Snot.

Sadly these effects may not go away anytime soon in our “post-Covid world”, at least judging by this argument from Commentary magazine, The Atlantic’s Nervous Breakdown:

The Atlantic reader who visits the website rather than simply journeying there through social-media links is turned into a doom-scroller, confronted time and again as she journeys down the homepage with headlines like this one: “America Is Running Out of Time.” Note how the title lacks specificity; it doesn’t need specificity, because this is what nearly every article in the Atlantic is about. (A recent feature in the January/February print issue of the magazine was titled, simply, “Are We Doomed?”)

“Bring Back the Nervous Breakdown,” urged a 2021 article. And so Goldberg’s Atlantic has. An astonishingly large number of stories in both the print and online versions of the magazine now focus on the irrational feelings of a very particular and privileged class of people—elite, left-of-center, educated people who ironically believe themselves too sophisticated to be emotionally manipulated like the unwashed Fox-viewing masses they abhor.

Pieces like Ian Bogost’s essay “I’m Starting to Give Up on Post-Pandemic Life” typify the Atlantic’s panic porn—the titillating personal account of a distorted negative emotional experience described lubriciously with no observable larger social purpose.

I read that last article. My advice is that you should not. A godawful piece of existentially painful navel gazing from a self-absorbed twat, who just happens to be “an American academic and video game designer.” He’s not alone: the article looks at another Atlantic writer, Alexis Madrigal, who caught Covid at a wedding despite being fully vaxxed, and promptly had a meltdown:

“The life disruption—the logistical pain you cause those around you—is now a major part of any bad scenario. As I write this, I’m now 10 days past my first symptoms, but I continue to test positive on antigen tests, and so I have not returned home. I haven’t hugged my kids for 10 days.”

He experienced only mild illness, his kids never got sick, and yet:

Madrigal’s conclusion isn’t that he might have overreacted in his risk assessment. He doesn’t even entertain that possibility. Rather, he doubles down on the idea of living in permanent emotional lockdown because of COVID: “Things aren’t likely to change that much for quite some time. Even after however many kids get vaccinated, there will still be breakthrough infections. Other variants could spread. Maybe we’re in this space for another year or two or three.”

Christ! What a hideous fate for a grand old American magazine that made its name during the US Civil War and was still an excellent read just twenty years ago.

FFS, we’re certainly never going to have a “post-pandemic world” if it’s heavily influenced by people like this, and while it’s tempting for me to make scathing observations about the modern writers of The Atlantic, the terrible truth is that there are apparently millions of people in Western nations that have been driven as insane as this – including New Zealand, judging by the frightened hordes lining up this week to get their little kids jabbed.

Despite this doom and gloom I will finish with this hopeful quote:

Human nature possesses an irreducible—or, if you will, an irremedial—capacity for resisting domination. We humans will not accept an harmonious arrangement of our lives that denies us all freedom to act as individuals. . . . We will not recognize as good any course of action that annihilates our sense of responsibility for the course of our lives. We cannot care for a world, however ostensibly good, in which we cannot recognize ourselves, or any whom we love.

Written by Tom Hunter

January 20, 2022 at 6:00 am

Hey Kids! It’s your Covid Jab Day

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I already wrote about the nonsense of vaccinating kids aged less then 12 against the “deadly” C-19 virus, in the post The kids are alright.

That article noted some of the horrendous reporting that has happened on this specific issue via places like the New York Times, where claims of 900,000 kids hospitalised with C-19 since early 2020 were so wrong even that publication had to correct its “facts”.

Scanning Newshub the other day I noticed that the trick is now simply not to mention at all the extraordinarily low numbers of kids getting sick and dying from Chinese Xi Snot virus. Charts like the following from the CDC in the USA will not be seen in our local MSM.

That’s basically the Delta virus at work, but the statistics for Alpha in 2020 were no different for young kids (and young adults).

Such a chart won’t be seen in our MSM for good reason; it might increase “vaccine hesitancy” and the government can’t have that. There’s also this from my previous post:

“Then for other children in the 5-11-year-old age group, you really have to put a high premium on ensuring safety. Because we know that once you’ve excluded that probably 2 or 3 per cent of children with severe other problems, then the rest of the children, the chance of them getting even more than a cold or something they may not even notice, is really very small.” 
– Peter McIntyre. Otago University professor of women’s and children’s health,

To be fair that quote actually did come from Stuff.co.nz, which had an entire article on the question of vaccinating kids for C-19. But it’s the only such article I’ve seen, and it’s hard to find even on Stuff unless you have the link.

I wonder how many of those who are vulnerable to the virus, clearly shown in the chart, feel any guilt or shame about this at all? My read is few.

Written by Tom Hunter

January 17, 2022 at 10:47 am

A second answer to Why?

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Why? was the title of a post by Nick K, my co-blogger here at NM, as he grappled with the “reasoning” behind the vaccine and mask mandates here in NZ and similar approaches taken in most corners of the globe.

I came across one possible answer to that question covered in the post, One answer to Why?, which looked at the control of popular thinking via language control in the modern context of Tech companies in the Webosphere.

Here’s some background to those companies and their leaders in this article from City-Journal in 2017, The Disrupters, which is all about the new Lords of Silicon Valley:

In just ten years, Facebook built a global empire that surpassed General Electric in market value—and did it with just 4 percent of the Old Economy giant’s workforce: 12,000, compared with 300,000. Whatsapp, a recent Facebook acquisition, managed an even more impressive wealth-to-labor ratio, with a $19 billion value and just 55 employees. Combined, both companies reach roughly one-sixth of humanity. Facebook’s entertainment colleague just to the south, Netflix, crushed Blockbuster’s mammoth national network of 9,000 stores and 60,000 employees with its more nimble workforce of just 3,700 employees.

Capitalism in action. Many firms have been so destroyed in the past by new competitors. The article goes on to explore what might happen next with AI, robotics and so forth, providing examples along the way involving brilliant young people, like Michael Sayman. In doing so the writer interviewed a number of the leading lights of this IT revolution and even got an opinion poll done of them to assess where they thought it was all going.

That’s where it gets sad – and scary. For a start these founders (147 were polled) don’t like talking about inequality, probably because of this:

As far as the future of innovation and its impact on ordinary people, the most common answer I received in Silicon Valley was this: over the (very) long run, an increasingly greater share of economic wealth will be generated by a smaller slice of very talented or original people. Everyone else will increasingly subsist on some combination of part-time entrepreneurial “gig work” and government aid.

Now I’ve done pretty well out of capitalism, but to me that future sounds like it sucks ass, even with a theoretical Universal Beneficiary Income (UBI). Fully Automated Luxury Communism it is not. It’s actually Marx’s “disguised form of alms”. It’s quite clear that these “thought leaders” are very leary of what may happen when they’ve built robots that can do most things better than a human.

And what of the political and philosophical attitudes that go with all this? Well it’s not actually as obvious as you might think. First with the political:

Contrary to popular opinion, most of Silicon Valley is not a libertarian ATM. The tech industry is overwhelmingly Democratic. In 2008, 83 percent of donations from the top Internet firms went to Obama, not John McCain. Many of the Valley’s household names, including Google’s then-chairman Eric Schmidt, personally helped Obama in both presidential campaigns. Republicans rarely get much money or talent from the Valley.

Yet they’re against unions and regulations (of their industry) and big on free trade of course, which is why Bernie Sanders gets no love from these people, nor would any Democrat of the pre-1990’s. Nor Donald Trump. Bill Clinton sniffed the winds well.

Then there’s the philosophical ideas that drive their politics:

What I discovered through my survey was that Silicon Valley represents an entirely new political category: not quite liberal and not quite libertarian. They make a fascinating mix of collectivists and avid capitalists…But Silicon Valley philosophically diverges with libertarians and conservatives in a key way: they aren’t individualists. 

He gives a great example of the latter:

When the libertarian icon Rand Paul began his early run for president in 2015, in San Francisco, he expected to be greeted like a hero. During the rally that I attended, Paul got rousing applause for railing against mass government spying. But when Paul asked, “Who is a part of the leave-me-alone coalition?” expecting to hear cheers, the room went silent. “Not that many, huh?” he nervously asked.

He’s not the only one who is nervous on hearing that, and it leads straight into this:

In my survey, founders displayed a strong orientation toward collectivism. Fifty-nine percent believed in a health-care mandate, compared with just 21 percent of self-identified libertarians. They also believed that the government should coerce people into making wise personal decisions, such as whether to eat healthier foods. Sixty-two percent said that individual decisions had an impact on many other people, justifying government intervention.

That is, tech founders reject the core premise of individualism – that citizens can do whatever they want, so long as they don’t harm others.

And consider that several of these fantastically wealthy men control companies that very much can aid (or oppose) a government via their extraordinary reach into influencing the lives of hundreds of millions, probably billions, of people. This is the world of “Nudge Theory”, and it’s very applicable to the last two years of the C-19 pandemic – a period that has seen their fortunes skyrocket beyond what was even thought possible in 2017, in several cases almost doubling to $150 billion or $200 billion plus.

Hold that thought.

What has all this done to the US state that is home to almost all of this wealth and genius, California?Well, as this National Review article describes, it’s not good, The Crumbling California Model. Again it’s lengthy with a lot of links to prove its points, but basically it comes down to this:

Yet it’s time now to see what California’s “success” is all about. It reflects a new kind of economy — dominated by a few large companies, with an elite workforce, a large service class, and a population increasingly dependent on wealth redistribution. This emerging oligarchic regime, however progressive it likes to label itself, is more feudal than egalitarian, more hierarchical than competitive, financed largely by the same tech giants who help fund Newsom’s successful defeat of the recall.

Exactly what was described by that 2017 poll of those Californian tech leaders. That state was once a remarkably diverse, job-rich economy, with vibrant aerospace, oil, trade, manufacturing, business services, and agriculture sectors, as well as software and media. But aside from the IT industry those sectors have fallen away, taking with them the well-paid jobs for people who can’t program a computer. If living on wealth redistribution sounds great to you, consider this:

For most, the reality on the ground is increasingly challenging. The state is now the second-most unaffordable state for home-buyers, a particular challenge for Millennials, and it suffers the highest rate of “doubling up” — only our friend Hawaii does worse. California has the largest gap between middle and upper wage quartiles in the nation, and it has a level of inequality greater than that of Mexico and closer to that of Central American countries such as Guatemala and Honduras than to such “progressive” developed counties as Canada and Norway.

The paradox is that California Democrats, the voters as well as the politicians, adore those welfare states and wish to be more like them without recognising that there is more to “welfare” than government money.

Back to that article I linked to the other day, looking at the control of language and ideas in our modern world. It finishes with this:

During the last three decades and possibly more, Western governments working hand in glove with large corporate interests have spent enormous energy and resources on perception management techniques designed to effectively undermine citizens’ ability to oppose the policies that these same elites, in their incandescent wisdom, have decided are best for the people. 

The attacks of September 11th gave these corporate and government leaders both the additional funds and the political latitude they needed to greatly accelerate work on these culture-planning processes. The Covid crisis has put the whole game on steroids. 

We have many ways of ignoring these frightening developments, most common and intellectually lazy of these being to dismiss them without examination under the rubric of “conspiracy theories.”

One answer to Why?

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When an individual enters the regressed mental space [of “learned helpness], the stature of all those presented to him as authority figures—no matter their actual level of competence or coherence—rises dramatically. 

Why? was the title of a post by Nick K, my co-blogger here at NM, as he grappled with the “reasoning” behind the vaccine and mask mandates here in NZ and similar approaches taken in most corners of the globe.

I have two possible answers to that question, they’re rather disturbing, they’re connected, and I’ll deal with the second in a follow-up post.

This article from The Brownstone Institute in the USA is a bit of an intellectual wank:

When we write as humanists, we select from the inventory of verbal metaphors we have acquired in the course of our lives to tell a story that we believe will enlighten and will capture the attention of our readers. In providing them with this carefully arranged series of “charged” anecdotes we trust that we are, in some way, facilitating ….

Blah, blah, blah. Yuck.

But it does contain two nuggets as it compares the culture, the use and control of language and thinking surrounding the 9/11 attacks and the C-19 pandemic:

Once this “mini-course” in fear-tinged mental disjunction was offered to the public and accepted by it with little visible pushback in the first weeks and months of the crisis, Fauci, Birx and Redfield, along with their chosen spokespeople at the CDC and in the media, were in effect, “off to the races.”

With the basic template we rely on to make reasoned risk assessments about our lives effectively shattered, millions lapsed into the mental state that has always been the programmatic end goal of those, like Bruce Jessen and James Mitchell, who design torture programs for the US government: “Learned helplessness.” 

When an individual enters this regressed mental space, the stature of all those presented to him as authority figures—no matter their actual level of competence or coherence—rises dramatically. 

Indeed, considerable research suggests that a lack of coherence or predictability in such authority figures only enhances the now psychically helpless person or group of persons’ estimation of the “authority figure’s” irreplaceability and excellence. This suggests that there may have been more than a little “method” in the apparent “madness” of Fauci’s notorious flip-flops on key policy issues. 

For a certain part of the population, perhaps bereft of rituals and practices designed to help them transcend the crude, cruel and ambiguity-generating rhythms of our now largely transactional culture, the surrendering the self to authority can take on an almost religious allure. 

They give an example of a conversation that is…

“… quite representative of dozens I have had in real life during the last 22 months, maintained often with “well-educated” people who, in no small percentage, can rightfully place MAs and PhDs after their names on resumes”.

Person A: I am really scared about Covid. 
Person B: Do you know what the chances of dying for someone your age who happens to catch Covid? 
Person A: No.
Person B: Well, according to the latest CDC statistics your chances of survival if you get it are 99.987%. 
Person A: But I know of the cousin of a friend who was my age and healthy and who died. I also read a news report about a healthy young person dying in New York the other day. 
Person B: Yes, the reports you speak of may be true. But they point to very particular instances that might not be representative of general trends, and thus are not really helpful in helping you determine your actual risk. The only useful way to do that is by looking at broadly-constituted statistics. 
Person A: I knew it. I just knew it. You really are one of those conspiracy-loving Covid deniers who is happy to just let lots of people die. 

That’s also quite representative of conversations I’ve had over the last two years, including with commentators on this blog.

Written by Tom Hunter

January 15, 2022 at 4:00 pm

“I’m gonna shutdown the virus”

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Of course you aren’t, you imbecilic, senile old fool, and now even you realise it with case numbers like those.

Also, as predicted, Biden’s C-19 death toll has exceeded that of Trump’s, despite having vaccines, and with seven days to go in the first year of this “Administration”.

There’s also these things happening on his watch. From the Marietta, Georgia area.

In Fredericksburg, VA (H/T Instapundit)

If you look closely at the petrol pump in the first photo, you’ll see the “I did that” Biden sticker pasted to it and pointing at the gasoline price.

Somebody should start producing the same things for Ardern here in New Zealand. They’re going to be useful in 2022.

The suicide of expertise

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This was the title of an article written by Law Professor Glenn Reynolds for USA Today back in 2017. But what it has to say seems even more powerful as the years have passed.

According to Foreign Affairs magazine, Americans reject the advice of experts so as “to insulate their fragile egos from ever being told they’re wrong.” That’s in support of a book by Tom Nichols called The Death of Expertise, which essentially advances that thesis.

Well, it’s certainly true that the “experts” don’t have the kind of authority that they possessed in the decade or two following World War II. Back then, the experts had given us vaccines, antibiotics, jet airplanes, nuclear power and space flight. The idea that they might really know best seemed pretty plausible.

But as Reynolds points out, the last fifty years contains a rather large number of big mistakes by experts:

  • The Vietnam war and “The Best and The Brightest”.
  • The War on Poverty (still being lost the last I heard).
  • Government nutritional advice from the 1960s on.
  • Failing to foresee the fall of the USSR.
  • Failing to foresee the rise in Islamic extremism.
  • Iraq and other “democracy building” projects gone awry. (2022 added Afghanistan to that ilist)
  • The Housing and Subprime mortgage bubbles of the 2000’s, leading to the Global Financial Crisis of 2008; a failure in both forecasting and handling.

There are a whole lot more smaller ones scattered in there as well, including Brexit and the botched launch of Obamacare. Reynolds quotes Nassim Taleb, a mathematical statistician (best known for his book The Black Swan):

“With psychology papers replicating less than 40%, dietary advice reversing after 30 years of fatphobia, macroeconomic analysis working worse than astrology, the appointment of Bernanke who was less than clueless of the risks, and pharmaceutical trials replicating at best only 1/3 of the time, people are perfectly entitled to rely on their own ancestral instinct and listen to their grandmothers.”

Reynolds also points out that this class of “experts” has done pretty well for itself in this same time period, even as many of the ordinary people they tell what to do, have not. Reynolds has a suggestion on that:

If experts want to reclaim a position of authority, they need to make a few changes. First, they should make sure they know what they’re talking about, and they shouldn’t talk about things where their knowledge isn’t solid. Second, they should be appropriately modest in their claims of authority. And, third, they should check their egos.

In the last two years of the C-19 pandemic I’ve seen no sign of any of this from the “experts”, where ego has been combined with an MSM that loves “experts” (as long as they agree with the Narrative and/or “Settled Science”).

On that last I appreciated these end-of-year musings about it all in Science and Chainsaws. There’s some throat clearing at first:

I’m no virologist or geneticist, but experts I respect persuaded me of the vaccines’ safety and efficacy. I got jabbed as soon as possible and regret that others chose not to. I wear masks in some situations, and not others. I see people socially but avoid large crowds. I favored lockdowns and school closings in early 2020 but think they lingered too long.

As grateful as he is to these scientists however, he sounds some warning notes:

The history of medicine offers ample reasons to avoid smug certitude which, unfortunately, is abundant on social and traditional media. Science is always about likelihood and never about certainty, though word apparently hasn’t reached Twitter and TV news. Then there is the flagrantly political demeanor of so many COVID experts.

He makes particular mention of the way that ex-New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo was lionised, and the feedback of the man to that praise with comments like, “Look at the data. Follow the science. Listen to the experts. … Be smart.”

How many times have we heard that from others? But as the writer says:

Here’s why they shouldn’t. Science, like a chainsaw, is an exceedingly powerful and useful tool. But “follow the science” makes no more sense than “follow the chainsaw.” The chainsaw doesn’t know the safest way to cut a tree, and science—let alone some anthropomorphic vision of it—can’t weigh the tradeoffs between slowing COVID and shutting down schools and cancer surgeries.

He finishes by quoting from a woman Ann Bauer, who has an autistic son and in the 1990’s was hammered as the cause of autisim; a “refrigerator mother” according to the theories of Psychologist Bruno Bettelheim, who is now regarded as a charlatan but for a time was held as the holder of a gospel truth:

In October, novelist and essayist Ann Bauer wrote a poignant column, “I Have Been Through This Before,” on her discomfort with the parade of cocksure COVID experts issuing ever-changing diktats and pronouncements. When vaccines didn’t end the pandemic, she wrote, “doctors and officials blamed their audience of 3 billion for the disease. The more the cures failed, the greater the fault of the public.”

Science is ultimately about learning. I see little evidence of that at present.

Written by Tom Hunter

January 11, 2022 at 9:56 am

From ZOMG Omicron to “Long Covid”

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I’d already covered much of this in the post, Political Science, but other recent news is worth adding into the picture.

That was Dec 27 and just like clockwork, here’s the Associated Whores on Christmas Eve.

You’d have to dig deeper to discover the amazing fact about NYC, or that nearly every other state has also broken records. Like most of the MSM they rely on 80% of their readers not going beyond the headline.

Then there’s this Christmas news and the speculation about an end to Covid-shaming:

Of the top 10 states (including Washington, D.C.) with the highest COVID-19 infection rate at the moment, seven of them are governed by Democrats.

Unfortunately for CNN and MSNBC, that fact can’t be directly traced to Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis so they’ve chosen not to really talk about it, but if they did, they might ask what Democrats are doing so wrong in D.C. (averaging 1,313 new cases each day), New York (32,566), New Jersey (14,028 ), Rhode Island (1,382), Delaware (1,029), Illinois (12,426), and Hawaii (1,361).

What’s going on? Why aren’t they Following The Science? Are Democrats trying to kill people?

The national media’s beloved New York, the place Saint Anthony Fauci once said was doing everything “correctly,” has seen a 55 percent increase in hospitalizations as of Monday. D.C. has seen a 94 percent increase.

Actually this is good news for two reasons.

First, because Omicron fear will not long survive the stats on low hospitalisation and death rates:

Second, because political fear is rapidly exceeding health fear:

The administration of floundering bozos who currently run the country are desperate to get out of the epidemic… Nothing is going to stop the butt-kicking coming in November, but it will be magnitudes worse if we aren’t out of the epidemic by then, so I predict that sometime in the spring, the Presidementia will declare victory and do everything possible to end all restrictions and return to “normal”, if we even remember what that was.  He and his party have to get the CV-19 millstone off their necks.

As pointed out yesterday the process has already started but I’ll let the Health Skeptic sum it up:

You can read the tea leaves from Fauci, Walensky, et al, the political stooges of the White House.  Backtracking as fast as they can from their former rigid orthodoxy about how the epidemic had to be handled.  Suddenly PCR tests aren’t reliable indicators of infectiousness and maybe every hospitalization and death attributed to CV-19 actually wasn’t caused by it.  Two Democrat governors have said very clearly that mask mandates are worthless and masks do nothing to stop the spread [“Well it’s not curbing the spike down in New York City, which is probably ground zero,” Connecticut Governor Lamont responded.] I am shocked that they were not instantly struck down with lightning bolts for such heretical apostasy to the mask religion.  The mass media, which is slavishly devoted to the interests of the progressive wing of the Dumocrat party, is even publishing articles about the need to move on.

Of course there are grifters out there for whom “moving on” means shifting the goal posts:

What exactly is “long COVID”? Good luck finding a solid, evidence-based answer to that. It’s typically described as a set of symptoms that could possibly be caused by the lingering effects of previously having the coronavirus. The problem? The symptoms in question (brain fog, low energy, etc.) are so generic that they could literally be caused by dozens of other ailments, or they could actually be nothing at all.

For example, as RedState reported months ago, a study out of the UK examined “long COVID” in children. Incredibly, the results showed that kids in the control group (i.e. those who never even had COVID) had a higher prevalence of “long COVID” symptoms than those who had actually been infected at the four-week and 12-week intervals of the study.

What does that tell you? Well, it seems to suggest that “long COVID” could very often just be people being human. Humans tend to get sick, have headaches, feel spaced out, etc. from time to time. To assign every preceding ill a person endures to a past COVID infection is highly dubious.

The perfect scam. You don’t have to actually prove that “long COVID” is highly prevalent and a serious issue. You can just claim that a whole group of common ailments that likely have nothing to do with C-19 are a result of “long COVID” and then demand others to prove the negative.

Written by Tom Hunter

January 8, 2022 at 6:00 am

They got it wrong again.

with 5 comments

Having already written in 2020 about the insanely wrong predictions made early that year by British epidemiological “expert”, Neil Ferguson, followed by his total hypocrisy in breaking his own lockdown rules for a little bit of crumpet on the side, I didn’t think I’d ever have to hear from him again.

I should have known better since that first post listed equally hysterical and wrong predictions from him going back twenty years across Swine Flu, Bird Flu and Mad Cow Disease. If they were still listening to him after those then his failures on the Chinese Xi Snot Alpha virus would not have stopped the MSM turning to him again for Omicron predictions:

I’ll let Mr Watson explain further.

Written by Tom Hunter

January 7, 2022 at 4:00 pm

Political Science

with 9 comments

No, not the “scientific” study of politics.

We’re going to have to add another category:

There have been some extraordinary flip-flops in the USA over the last couple of weeks on the Chinese Xi Snot disease.

Cloth masks don’t work – CNN

“Cloth masks are not appropriate for this pandemic,” CNN’s Dr. Leana Wen said on Monday night. “It’s not appropriate for omicron,” she continued. “It was not appropriate for delta, alpha, or any of the previous variants, either, because we’re dealing with something that’s airborne.”

On the other hand, back in July of 2020, Wen was actually touting cloth masks on Twitter. “It’s a lot less uncomfortable than ventilators, dialysis lines, all of those things that have had to happen to my father,” she warned.

PCR tests are unreliable – CDC director:

The newly updated CDC guidelines don’t require testing at the end of isolation because PCR tests can stay positive for up to 12 weeks, CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky told “Good Morning America” Wednesday. “So we would have people in isolation for a very long time if we were relying on PCRs,” Walensky explained.

I can think of other problems raised by such sensitive tests that can produce a bucketload of false positives – like huge numbers of cases that could scare the shit out of ordinary people when publicised by unscrupulous or moronic MSM sources and government healthcare bureaucrats – and politicians of course.

Ten day quarantines can be cut to five days – CDC

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) just dropped adjusted quarantine guidelines for COVID-19 and vaccinated individuals. This is after an outcry from the airline industry that the guidelines and the surge in Omicron variant cases were causing staffing shortages.

Wait! What? You mean to say they took other factors into consideration rather than just “YOU WANT TO KILL GWANDMA.

The reason for the change then was not “SCIENCE” but complaints from industry. This was promptly backed up by none other than Dr Fauci. The decision is based on keeping things open because the sheer number of people testing positive with Omicron would crash things if they were all told to follow the previous CDC rules.

As a result the Left hit the roof, as you can see from the responses on that Twitter thread. My fave so far (H/T Spongebob Squarepants):

sAcRiFiCe YoUr LiFe FoR tHe GlOrY oF mAmMoN

Although it’s a tough competition since they’ve thrown their idol as far under the bus as they could (from that link):

The Left “embraces the science” only when the science embraces the left’s narrative. When it does not, science is to be ignored, manipulated, dismissed out of hand, or bald-faced lied about it. BTW, one of the nutters there, Rashida Tlaib, is a member of Congress; part of “The Squad” actually, those fearsome new Women of Colour taking the baton of socialism from Bernie Sander’s dying hands.

Yet the same Left is aghast that Fauci admitted that “The Science” is really The Politics. But barely anything in the past two years of the pandemic has been done because of science. It’s all politics. And dirty, crude, base-stroking politics at that.

In fact this is the CDC doing science, although they’re just catching up – to the point where they’re obviously now going to start treating C-19 like every other respiratory virus. Cold and flu contagions are generally within the first 2-5 days of onset of symptoms. If a person has no symptoms, then it is a waste of time, money, manpower, and critical resources forcing them to isolate. They had been warned a few days earlier:

A trade group representing major U.S. airlines urged the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to halve its recommended quarantine time for individuals with breakthrough cases of Covid-19, warning the current 10 days could lead to labor shortages and flight disruptions.

An implicit lockdown then. Well duh! And it wasn’t just the CEO of Delta Airlines either.

Folks on the Left are mad at Fauci and the government for making it so plain that it isn’t just about public health – that economics and politics factored into the decision. Why were those important factors not important enough to consider before when small businesses were being shut down and people were losing their jobs? It was always true that you should consider other factors. It’s just that earlier they didn’t care and were willing to throw everything under the bus. Some of them – not just the screamers – still are:

Is it because they don’t want society to grind to a halt under Joe Biden? I’d bet that it is.

Which is why we got this from The Big Guy: “There is no Federal solution”. Plus an assist from the “conservative” journalist, Jennifer Rubin at the WaPo, whose brain was so broken by Trump that she flip-flops shamelessly on everything; here on what rising case numbers mean politically for DeSantis vs Biden a few months apart.

In this she and the rest of the MSM are just acting as stenographers for the Administration; here’s Biden COS Ron Klain repeating the same argument that saw Right wingers and other opponents of these policies cancelled from FaceTwit just months ago. It should always have been about protecting those most at risk and not locking everyone down. But the Democrats were too busy pushing fear pornography.

The FaceTwit banning shit is still going on:

But in nine months time, they’ll find out he was right the whole time, which will then add some more fun to Right Wing commentator Ben Shapiro’s selection of all these backtracks and more in this thread:

So once it became clear that covid was not in fact a pagan god visiting vengeance on the unwashed Trump voters alone, the media and Democrats are now willing to admit the following:

1. Cloth masks are ineffective against omicron (Leanna Wen, CNN);
2. The vaccinated can spread and get covid;
3. The death rate is comparable to the flu (Chris Hayes);
4. Many people are entering hospitals with covid, not from covid (Fauci);
5. Natural immunity is a reason omicron hasn’t been as virulent (Fauci);
6. We have to take into account societal needs, not just spread prevention (CDC);
7. The asymptomatic should not be tested (NFL);
8. We should focus on hospitalizations and deaths, not case rate (Biden);
9. Children are not at risk and schools should remain open;
10. Covid is predominantly an illness affecting the immunocompromised and elderly and we should not shut down society.

I wonder when anybody in New Zealand, starting with our MSM, is going to catch up with any of this?

Oh, who am I kidding, they were ideological bitches for the Left before this started and thanks to $110 million they’ve moved to be whores for Labour.