The “fascist” may be gone but now we’re primed to get a taste of what authoritarianism really is.
ASTORIA, NYC- I watched them dancing in the streets the weekend before last. They were whooping, cheering, banging on pots and pans, and high fiving each other. The media said their guy won, and they believe the media. They would make eye contact with me as I walked by, seemingly expecting me to reciprocate their hoots of joy and give them a Covid-proof elbow bump. But I just stared straight ahead. I am not one of them. And I can’t believe news networks that have reduced themselves to little more than mouthpieces for a particular political party, China style.
My disposition changed when I reminded myself that these will be the same people who come January will be whining about how they don’t have a job and can’t afford their rent, begging for handouts from the government as retribution for the problems they wantonly voted for.
One candidate said no to lockdowns, the other said yes. They voted to be locked down, to have their rights stripped from them, to have the constitution crumpled up and cancelled like someone who doesn’t believe there are 237 different genders. Their economy will be decimated. They will whine about it. They will riot just to have something to do. They will keep blaming it all on the Orange Man.
Biden selected Michael Osterholm as his special C19 advisor. You may remember him as being one of the earliest fearmongers to jump on the scene when the pandemic first broke out. His business is epidemics. Hardly three days after the media presumptuously gave Biden the victory Osterholm began calling for a nationwide lockdown:
“We have a big pool of money out there that we could borrow — the historic low interest rates by the federal government — we could pay for a package right now to cover all of the wages, lost wages for individual workers, for losses to small companies, to medium-sized companies or city, states, county governments … If we did that, then we could lock down for four to six weeks…”
Economics apparently isn’t his strong suit.
The first question to ask is: do you believe when they say when the lockdown will end? New York City’s lockdown was touted as being two weeks to “flatten the curve” and ended up lasting for nearly three months. We have still have not fully reopened, and now it’s looking as if we’re heading for lockdown once again.
New York City recently required bars and restaurants to close at 10pm (apparently C19 spreads more between the hours of 10 and midnight), closed public schools (even though it’s been proven that schools are not a primary vector for the spread of the virus), and limited private gatherings to 10 people, ostensibly canceling Thanksgiving for many families.
Chicago took things one step further and did cancel the holiday (a day after the mayor was dancing around in the streets with hundreds of people without wearing a mask celebrating the presumptive Biden victory). California announced new Covid restrictions which only took the governor mere hours to go out and violate. Pennsylvania is aiming to force people to wear masks in their own homes.
Speaking of Pennsylvania, courts have in no uncertain terms declared lockdowns to be unconstitutional. The same goes for Michigan. However in Michigan the governor refused to respect the decision, imposed new lockdown measures, and is now potentially being brought up for impeachment.
In Europe, everything seems to be tearing apart at the seams. In France, people can’t leave their homes without papers documenting the purpose of their trip. In Greece, people have to text the authorities each time they step outside. In Denmark, a proposed law is paving the way for the government to force vaccinate people, Nazi style. France, the Czech Republic, and Spain are rioting over the new lockdowns. In the UK, people are not only locked down but are being prohibited from LEAVING the country.
We are experiencing authoritarianism in its purest form to an extent that we have not witnessed in generations — perhaps centuries. Now, you can say that there is a deadly virus and the governments are just trying to keep people safe, but authoritarianism always has an excuse. Look at history. Each totalitarian movement is justified by the premise that society is going to be made stronger and that people will be kept safer. There needs to be some carrot at the end of the stick to get you to willfully sacrifice your liberties.
Don’t fall for it.
While it seems as if the entire planet locked down because that’s what we’ve mostly been shown in the news, that wasn’t the case. Images of China from last winter show people locked up in their homes and businesses shuttered, but these mostly came from a select few cities, such as Wuhan. Most places in China never fully locked down for C19 for significant amounts of time. South Korea never had a universal lockdown. Neither did Japan. Neither did Taiwan. Neither did Sweden. Plenty of countries didn’t impose lockdowns, saved their economies, preserved their citizen’s rights, and are no worse off than those that did.
During the first lockdown I ran the numbers, read the words of contrarian epidemiologist, statisticians, and doctors and came the the conclusion that imprisoning people in their homes wouldn’t only lead to more deaths from other causes (suicide, drug overdose, heart attacks, domestic abuse) and would do little to stem the flow of C19. But my conclusions were mere assumptions — the mass quarantining of healthy individuals was a sick new experiment then. But now we’re able to look at the results of such lockdowns and we know how effective they are:
In almost every case, not at all.
The New England Journal of Medicine recently published a study from Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in cooperation with the Naval Medical Research Center to determine the benefit of quarantine in the military environment. They had one group of Marines kept in strict quarantine while the other group were permitted to live like it was 2019. In the end, 2.8% of those in the quarantine group contracted C19. Meanwhile, the control group, which did not quarantine, contracted C19 at a 1.7% clip. Yes, those who quarantined had a worse Covid rate.
Now, this is just one study in one environment, and, in and of itself, does not mean that quarantine makes Covid transmit at a higher rate. But it is another drop in a stream that’s quickly running towards a conclusion that quarantines do not effectively inhibit the transmission of Covid-19.
Remember, 66% of the people hospitalized with Covid in the later stage of the first wave in New York had been quarantining.
There is simply no connection between lockdowns and lives saved.
When we compare the results of places that locked down against places that didn’t, the results are surprising: at best, they’re random.
The below chart compares the US states with few restrictions vs. those that locked down. If lockdowns had an impact, we’d expect a rapid drop off going to the right.
The below chart that was compiled from Oxford University data and shows that the European countries that had the harshest lockdowns tended to also have some of the worst Covid outcomes:
While this chart shows Covid mortality rates vs harshness of intervention methods from 24 European countries:
Again, it shows that places with more stringent lockdowns had worse Covid outcomes.
While we can argue about the nuances of all of these studies I believe we can agree on one thing: there is no evidence that conclusively shows that lockdowns present a significant benefit in the fight against Covid. Lockdowns seem as if they should work but they are the stuff of pseudoscience.
Meanwhile, our countries are being decimated, millions have lost their livelihoods, and the arts and culture that made places like NYC great has been extinguished. Bars and restaurants are closing in torrents and once busy commercial strips are now gauntlets of empty shops decked out in for rent signs. Midtown Manhattan looks like a refugee camp — the homeless are laying all over the streets, huddled beneath blanket forts. And the rest of the lockdown-loving Democratic states and cities is the US aren’t faring much better.
Even the WHO is saying no more lockdowns.
Yet governments around the world are still pushing for them. Our only question has to be why?
Certainly, they have the data, they have access to the experts, they know how bad the mass quarantining of the healthy individuals is for the society, and they must know by now that they don’t work. So why are they still doing them?
To absolve themselves from responsibility?
To bask in the intoxication of absolute power?
To bring forth a Great Reset?
As I walked through that crowd of revelers I had to laugh at the irony: they were cheering because they think “the fascist” is gone while setting themselves for a taste of what fascism really is.
In the words of Stanford University doctor Scott Atlas: You get what you accept.
The only way this stops is if people rise up.
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