Tuesday, October 13, 2020


Has government exceeded its power with Covid shutdowns? Some have thought so from the beginning, but almost everyone cooperated for the first few weeks to “flatten the curve.” It seemed logical not to overload our hospitals and I heard no one object in my small circle, but that’s changing. 

The curve has been flattened for some time now but media hype continues unabated and, consequently, so does public fear. Mask-wearing is viewed as a public responsibility to some and an exercise in virtue-signaling for others to whom it has become a woke, fashion accessory.

Michigan Governor Whitmer

We’ve learned that not all of us are vulnerable to the virus — that only elderly persons with multiple co-morbidities need worry. We’ve also learned that the first dire predictions of millions dying in the the U.S. were way overblown. We’ve learned that the CDC has been over-counting Covid deaths by 94%. Studies are beginning to emerge indicating that shutdowns may not have curbed spread of the virus at all — but it’s becoming almost treasonous to suggest that.

Months ago, some Americans filed suit against blue-state governors for exceeding their constitutional authority and rulings on those suits are beginning to come down. In Pennsylvania, a federal judge ruled that Democrat Governor Wolf’s lockdown orders are unconstitutional. Plaintiffs include Republican state representatives, county officials, and Congressman Mike Kelly from the Pittsburgh area. The decision was issued in September and Wolf has appealed. A circuit court stay is in place and it will take more time to work this through to a final conclusion.

Meantime, in Michigan, the state supreme court ruled that Democrat Governor Whitmer exceeded her authority with Covid restrictions as well. The Michigan attorney general declared he would no longer enforce her edicts. It’s hard to determine how much her autocratic behavior around the virus contributed to the FBI-foiled plan by anarchists to kidnap her. Perhaps that will come out at trial, assuming the perpetrators don’t plea-bargain.

And what an odd bunch they are. Governor Whitmer immediately blamed President Trump for the kidnapping plot, but then a video came out of one potential plotter wearing earlobe-stretching disc earrings as he expressed his hatred for the president. Given leftist, anti-government riots perpetrated by BLM and Antifa on one hand and right-wing, anti-government actions by the likes of Terry McVeigh and Terry Nichols twenty-five years ago, it’s hard to position these plotters on the political spectrum.

WHO reverses itself on shutdowns

Just days ago, the World Health Organization reversed itself and advised world leaders to stop “using lockdowns as your primary control method” with the Coronavirus, and “Lockdowns just have one consequence that you must never ever belittle, and that is making poor people an awful lot poorer.” It wasn’t long ago that President Trump cancelled US support to the WHO for being in cahoots with the Chinese Communist Party. Now they’re on the same page.

It’s not just political groups rebelling against autocratic edicts by Democrat officials. In New York City, conservative Jews openly defied Democrat Mayor DiBlasios’ and Democrat Governor Cuomo’s ban on religious gatherings by dancing in the streets. Also in NYC, Brooklyn Roman Catholic Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio filed suit against the state of New York for violating his First Amendment guarantee of free exercise of religion. New York’s usually-timid Cardinal Timothy Dolan surprisingly backed DiMarzio’s suit.

After President Trump tested positive for the virus, mainstream media claim it’s because of his refusal to wear a mask. Some outlets imply that he got his just desserts for his reluctance. I do not believe they’re effective against spreading the virus and I resent the signs on entry doors telling me I cannot enter without a mask. Although they cost me $15 apiece, I purchased some face masks online which declare: “THIS MASK IS USELESS, AND SO IS YOURS.” Some shoppers just stare at me, while others tell me: “I love your mask.”

As I’m about to submit this column on Tuesday, I see a report by national security correspondent Jordan Schachtel that:

“[A]CDC study, which surveyed symptomatic COVID-19 patients, has found that 70.6% of respondents reported “always” wearing a mask, while an additional 14.4% say they “often” wear a mask. That means a whopping 85% of infected COVID-19 patients reported habitual mask wearing. Only 3.9% of those infected said they “never” wear a face covering.”

Last August, according to the Huffington Post, Joe Biden said: “Let’s institute a mask mandate, nationwide, starting immediately, and we will save lives.” A few days ago though, Biden said he’s not sure a president can do that, but he would mandate them on federal property. A glance at the map of federal land in the USA, you’ll see that half of California and nearly all of several western states.


TRD said...

The U.S. is “facing a whole lot of trouble” as coronavirus cases continue to surge across the country.

Dr. Anthony Fauci - the nation’s top infectious disease expert

The U.S. reported more than 44,600 new cases on Sunday and the seven-day average rose to over 49,200 new cases per day, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

I could listen to the experts, scientists and doctors who let us know what is really going on about the spread of Covid, masks and shutdowns, or I can listen to a partisan windbag who parrots back whatever Trump farts out.

CaptDMO said...

"conservative Jews"?
I say, misleading.
Conservative to The Constitution of the USA? Maybe
And in this case, certainly.
Absolutely more conservative to orthodox Judaism than hyphenated except bacon cheeseburger and tattoo folk.
(But not the MOST)
Oh sure there was a fire....in the middle of the street....of paper masks.
You wouldn't expect them to stupidly load the garbage landfills with them.(Hat tip to The Bell Curve)

Which brings me to stupidly spreading Chinese Wuhan Novel Coronavirus-19 throughout the ENTIRE USPS system, as an "unintended consequence" of mail-in voting, in ADDITION to (arguably)legitimate absentee voting, but that's an entirely separate dilemma.
Isn't it?

Steve said...

Mr. McLaughlin, you write CDC over counted the US death rate by 94%. Can you link something that supports that? This link here: https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/#countries provides abundant information about the infection rate by country as well as by our states. Our stated death toll is 221,431. If that number is over counted by 94% that reduces that number to 13,285. That’s one heck of a disparity. I looked at the 25 countries with the highest rates of Covid infection. Our mortality rate based on these numbers is about .027%. The average mortality rate among the 25 countries with the highest infection count is .034%, which puts us below the average of these 25 countries. That suggests they’re all over counting the death toll. Why would they all be doing that? These countries are first, second and third world. They’re on five continents excluding Australia and Antarctica and have a variety of climates. It’s not like they’re clustered anywhere together.

Tom McLaughlin said...


Did those other countries count all deaths or people with Covid as having succumbed to Covid the way our CDC did? I don't know the answer to that. You could look it up perhaps.

The CDC was saying only 6% of the 277,000 people whom they cite died of Covid only. The rest died with Covid but not necessarily of Covid. Would they have died anyway if they hadn't contracted Covid? Perhaps. It's another thing we just don't know for sure yet.

Kafir said...

“ It’s not what the government does with data that defines it; it is what it does to human beings.” -Garry Kasparov

Love the mask, Tom.

TRD said...

If you are trying to dismiss Covid deaths because there are usually underlying conditions, then you would have to also say that AIDS has never killed anybody, because those deaths were all due to the immunity systems being weakened, causing other things to kill them.

There is absolutely no defending the fact that the USA has done worse than any other country when it comes to COVID. That reflects piss poor leadership.

TRD said...

Trump has also learned from Kasparov:

“The point of modern propaganda isn't only to misinform or push an agenda. It is to exhaust your critical thinking, to annihilate truth.”
― Garry Kasparov

Patriot said...

Ronald Reagan's son has just said that his father would be horrified by the Republican Party of today and "this pathological entity in the White House"

As are all patriotic Americans that care about decency and democracy and the well-being of the USA.

Steve said...

This quote from your blog, “We’ve learned that the CDC has been over-counting Covid deaths by 94%.” and this quote from your response, “The CDC was saying only 6% of the 277,000 people whom they cite died of Covid only. The rest died with Covid but not necessarily of Covid. Would they have died anyway if they hadn't contracted Covid? Perhaps. It's another thing we just don't know for sure yet.” are not the same thing. The former is a declarative statement of fact, the latter shows uncertainty. If someone with a well-managed comorbidity dies after getting Covid but would have lived another 5, 10, 15 years without it, then I think it’s fair to say they died from Covid. The catch is it’s impossible to know how much longer anyone would have lived had they not caught Covid. It’s also fair to say, the number of deaths attributed to Covid is not 100%. We’ll never know how many people died from it before we started taking it seriously in this country.

Many of the Trump base think a Covid diagnosis ends in one of three ways: death for an infinitesimally small fraction, asymptotic or illness for a week or so and then a full recovery. The fourth option is those who suffer greatly and possibly permanently. Symptoms, which are still being cataloged, include the whole familiar complement of symptoms seen with colds and flus, but also pneumonia, multi-system inflammation syndrome (MIS-A for adults and MIS-C for children) that can damage the brain, heart, lungs, liver and kidneys, clots in the legs, lungs and arteries, chronic fatigue, brain fog and those who have been dubbed long-haulers because they suffer some of these debilitating symptoms for months. This is a brand new virus to humans, and we have no idea how it will progress or mutate.

This situation was made worse by Trump’s indifference to it. Covid was the first real crisis he faced as President and he simply didn’t want to deal with it. Saying he didn’t want to panic us was a cop out. Punting it to the governors was a cop out. This was an opportunity to lead a nation in a reasoned and strategic way. It was an opportunity to unite instead of divide. He has been a catastrophic failure.

CaptDMO said...

The Monday morning expertise at the water cooler is ASTONISHING!
Marvel Comics backgrounds in Political science.
I suppose whatever interpretation of an elephant from a blind man fits the
contrarian will do.

CaptDMO said...

GOSH but I wish I could edit to add:
Whitmers latest.

Steve said...

This isn’t Monday-morning quarterbacking. We had enough grim news about the virus coming out of China, SE Asia and Europe to know it was going to get bad for us unless we took some preventive measures. Trump, by his own admission to Bob Woodward, continually downplayed the severity of the virus when speaking to us. Trump could very easily have encouraged his followers to take the virus more seriously. Instead he deferred action to the governors, even though, according to him, he has “absolute power over the states.” He removed himself from the situation and is now sitting back and condemning Democratic governors. THAT’S Monday-morning quarterbacking.

I don’t fault people for making the right decisions when faced with a problem. I really don't even fault people for making the wrong decisions when faced with a problem. At least they tried to improve the situation. I fault people when they ignore a problem and then blame everyone else.

Peter said...

I am baffled as to how Trump supporters can rationalize the immense defection of conservatives, Republicans, and military members away from Trump and who now endorse Biden. The latest who announced he will be voting to restore the soul of our nation is former RNC Chair and a lifelong Republican, Michael Steele. He joins hundreds of individuals who have publicly broken with the Republican president, including many who served under Trump.

More than 500 retired generals and admirals have endorsed Joe Biden and/or spoken out strongly against Trump, including retired Army General Stanley McChrystal, the former commander of U.S. troops in Afghanistan, Colin Powell, James Mattis, Marine Corps. Gen. John Kelly, and on and on.

How can Trump supporters feel that they know what is best for our country more than these long time Republicans and long time respected members of our military.

Can anybody answer this?

CaptDMO said...

There are those of us that don't politically "go along with" the folks
you've cited in the business of war, have no occupation without it, and are desperate for a mere figurehead of marked ignorance and weakness that will satisfy their mere vainglorious bloodlust to play chess "directing" others to provide "ranked" board pieces for Stratego,Battleship, Risk, (the game) Diplomacy, or Chess, or the masses of unranked place holders as in GO, ...unnecessarily, for them.

That Mr Biden is clearly most likely to result in permissive mayhem, and EASY co-option, usurpation, foreign and domestic, ....intentionally or not, is enough for the smart folks (but not the rent-seeking, so-called smart MONEY folk of war/ conflict/ disease/ ignorance profiteering) to go another way.
Ideally by the peaceful democratic polls- with one vote per sane man with skin in the game, placing the limited duration/onus of representation in our Republic in the appropriate seats of the gilded halls.

Any questions concerning Mr. Trump's "Noted and award winning" economic critics?
Any questions concerning Mr. Trump's "assigned" religious critics?
Any questions concerning Mr. Trump's "controversy dependent", mail-order elite intellectual, talking head critics?

Peter said...

CaptDMO, the argument you pose that all those people that endorse Biden do so because they think that he would be a more pliable "figurehead" to be directed as they wish makes little sense and actually works against your position. The vast majority of defecting Republicans are out of office and the vast majority of the military leaders are no longer serving. The defectors are not in the position to be "directing" anymore, unlike all those still in office that have stuck with Trump. Most sticking with Trump do so, I believe, because they think it is their best chance to keep what they so desire - power. Or maybe, as you pose, a chance to manipulate the being in the oval office? And do you really think that poorly of great leaders like General Mattis, etc, that they are just conniving and ungenuine? How disrespectful towards our military! No, now they speak freely in the best interest of our nation. If anybody is in the position of being manipulated, it is probably the one who refuses to release his taxes, hiding the money trail of just who he is in debt to, and who can pull his strings.

CaptDMO said...

You asked. I educated you.
What you do with it is no longer my concern.

Peter said...

CaptDMO, really? All you have as a counter is a somewhat rude (and silly) "I educated you"? Did my rational reply to you really shut you down from further discourse? Are you upset that my counter made sense and shot down your argument? I am just trying to have polite conversation, I am sorry you seem to be unable to do so.

Sami Gay said...

Where the heck is Brian? Someone needs to rip Tom a new one for this latest piece of garbage.

Peter said...

Now the conservative NH newspaper, The Union Leader, has endorsed Biden saying "Trump is 100% wrong for America". This is the first time in over 100 years they have endorsed a Democrat.

I suppose the Union Leader is just trying to co-opt and usurp power and use Biden as a pawn?

No, much more likely is that like all the other defectors they see a real threat to our democracy and to the soul of our nation. Believe it or not there are many who will not endorse a despot even if that despot is on their side when it comes to certain issues.