"Whenever I go into a restaurant, I order both a chicken and an egg to see which comes first"

Tuesday, August 3, 2021

COVID, Masks, And Race–Mandate Politics At Their Worst

Image result for ridiculous images biden in a mask

Early on during the COVID epidemic, cities struggled with ‘equity’.  How could they assure that both wealthy white neighborhoods and poor black ones would be equally treated?  In one major metropolitan city the municipality struggled with this issue more than most because the city was still as racially divided as South Africa was during apartheid.  

East of Longridge Parkway the neighborhoods were all black; west of it all white.  Wards to the east were almost 100 percent black, while wards to the west were almost all white; and not surprisingly social indicators were consistent with such racial divisions.  The poorest, blackest wards had the highest rates of crime, delinquency, drugs, poor academic performance, and single-parent families; while the wealthy white wards had just the opposite.

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It was not surprising, therefore that when the  COVID vaccine became available in the city the overwhelming demand came from white wards.  Highly educated, professional, and ambitious residents were the first to line up; and in the first weeks that the COVID vaccination website was open to all, most slots were taken by them.  

This was not surprising.  White ward residents knew the importance of the vaccine, had no qualms or reservations about it; no worries about autism, mind control, or deep state conspiracies.

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On the other hand residents east of the Parkway and south of the Alhambra River, had other things to worry about.  Drive-by shootings, a resurgence in drug-related violence, and gang-related murders were endemic.  Single mothers, pregnant, abandoned, and left with young children, turned to grandmothers for child care and the city for welfare and other ‘supplemental support’.  COVID, therefore, was never high on anyone’s list of priorities.

As a result, demand for the vaccine was desultory at best.  While coverage rates in white wards increased exponentially, those in black wards remained sluggish and stagnant.

In a stark, racially-motivated move, the City Council decided to rectify the situation by penalizing white wards and giving preferential access to black ones. Preventing whites from commandeering all the vaccine in the city would give blacks a greater chance of protection.  

The Mayor of course denied any racial preferences, and argued that the inequity was due to epidemiology.  Those wards with high levels of mortality, morbidity, and predisposing factors to immune system failure were to be prioritized. 

Residents of white neighborhoods called foul, charging unconstitutional arrogation of municipal authority and discrimination against those who follow the rules – masks, social distancing, testing – and who consequently had far fewer COVID infections. 

Be that as it may, said the City, one cannot ignore the unacceptable morbidity that contributes to COVID infection in minority wards.   We are being epidemiologically sound by prioritizing those districts of the city with the greatest health needs.

Disingenuous and racially motivated, replied white residents. ‘We are not healthy by accident’, they said, ‘ but have been deliberate and persistent in managing our physical well-being.  Why should we be penalized for such positive behavior?’

‘Racism’, shouted the most radical city officials.  ‘White privilege at best and white oppression at worst’, they said.   ‘It is because of you white people that the black man still suffers.  Social dysfunction is your problem, not his.  We will act on his behalf, favor him, prioritize him, protect him from your racist, white hegemonic, destructive ways.  Your privilege comes on the back of the black man.  This will not stand’.

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Of course, white residents quickly figured out how to skirt the demonstrably racist policies of the city government; and found that hospitals accepted former patients for vaccinations without question or criteria.  Most residents of white wards had been treated at area hospitals at one time or another, so vaccinations came early and easily; but the hostility against the city administration remained.  It is one thing to be politically attentive to your constituency; another thing to favor it with entitlements and walking-around money; but another thing entirely to baldly, hypocritically, and unashamedly to distort foundational principles of racial equality and use race as a deciding factor in public administration.

The flap died down once vaccines became universally available.  Website sign-ups, waitlists, and priorities were things of the past.  Anyone who wanted a shot could get one often without appointment at walk-in drug store clinics. 

Yet despite this now universal access, the vaccination rates in the black, minority wards of the city were less than half that of white.  Recent data from the District of Columbia, a comparable city, show that vaccination rates in majority black Ward 8 are half that of those in majority white Ward 3 (approximately 25 percent vs 50 percent).  Clearly the reasons for low vaccine uptake had nothing to do with problems of ‘access’, as claimed by the government, but to systemic dysfunctionality.

Similar statistics show a high correlation between low vaccination rates and high rate of hospitalization and infection.  It is clear that the unvaccinated are the cause of the continued spread of the disease.  They are giving each other the infection.

Because of a stated concern for the rapid spread of the Delta Variant, the City Council issued a mask mandate.  All those who enter public and private buildings in the city must wear masks, a setback to the renewed social and economic life of the city.  

A spokesperson for the Council said that it issued the restraining order ‘to protect all citizens of this great city’, but such a statement was a raw distortion of the truth.  The mask mandate was issued only to protect the unvaccinated – those who persistently and irresponsibly have refused to get the shot – and because the unvaccinated in the city were overwhelmingly black, her mask mandate was a transparent, baldly political reprise of the city’s racial policies of a year ago.

Image result for Image Arab women in Complete Purdah. Size: 211 x 204. Source: www.pinterest.se

New Delta variant-inspired mask mandates are senseless at best.  Vaccinated people rarely, and only rarely give each other breakthrough infections, and if infected, their illness is minor.  If unvaccinated people want to take the chance of infecting each other, it is up to them.  There is no need whatsoever to subject responsible, vaccinated residents to such restrictions.

It is again no surprise that mask mandates are favored by liberal Democratic jurisdictions.  Progressives reject the principle of personal responsibility as a criterion for policy.  The unvaccinated, regardless of their social and moral dereliction, must be protected in an ‘inclusive’ society.  When race is added to progressive fallacy, it is the perfect storm.  The racial policies of vaccination and mask mandates, popular and seemingly universal in all Democratic-run cities are divisive, unnecessary, and self-serving.   Mask mandates will be remembered as a pernicious by-product of the entire pandemic experience.

Sunday, August 1, 2021

The Sky Is Falling, The Sky Is Falling–Chicken Little In The White House

Chicken Little likes to walk in the woods. She likes to look at the trees. She likes to smell the flowers. She likes to listen to the birds singing.

One day while she is walking an acorn falls from a tree, and hits the top of her little head.

“My, oh, my, the sky is falling. I must run and tell the lion about it”, says Chicken Little and begins to run.

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America is a nation of doomsday-sayers.  Over twenty percent of Americans believe that Armageddon will happen in their lifetimes, and many more expect it the near future – not God-willed, but due to the ignorance and moral lassitude of human beings who refuse the reality of climate change.  

If these environmentalists are to be believed, the earth will continue warming at an accelerated rate, forests will be incinerated, cropland will become dry, cracked, and unproductive, and coastal cities will be submerged.  The earth will become a frightful, uninhabitable place.

Or so Chicken Little says. 

Most people believe in the versatility and adaptability of the human race.  Cities will be reconfigured through engineered wetlands, canals, waterways, hanging gardens, and floating neighborhoods. Recombinant DNA advances will enable hardy, drought-resistant crops to flourish, and eventually most agriculture will move north.  The far northern reaches of Canada, Russia, China, and Scandinavia will become the new grain belts of the world.

Perhaps most importantly, once the human genome is completely deciphered, the age of human genetic engineering will be fast upon us, and man will gain complete control of the environment.  No amount of global warming, Ice Age cooling, or variant climate change will be of any consequence.  

Just as agriculturalists are genetically modifying plants to be resistant to drought, pests, and soil depletion; so will engineers be able to modify the human genome to adapt to environmental conditions.   

Cities will not have to be changed to accommodate global warming.  Human beings will change.  The ability to thrive in water, to breathe different compositions of air, and to live well in either colder or warmer climates will be easily programmed.  Environmentalism will die as a movement, and human modification will be the focus of all attention.

Image result for Images DNA. Size: 156 x 100. Source: wallpapercave.com

If not global warming, then catastrophic, pandemic viral disease will wipe out human civilization, say Chicken Little doomsday sayers. It is only a matter of time before ‘The Big One’ emerges from a live poultry market in Hunan and destroys the human race.  Corona, Ebola, and plague will be nothing compared to the ravages of Virus X.

There are still some old school nuclear worriers who are convinced that an atomic holocaust is just over the horizon.  It is only a question of when before the world unleashes its nuclear armory in one final, extinction event. 

Americans come by this Chicken Little mentality honestly.  Over thirty percent of Americans believe that the Bible – and the Book of Revelations which predicts an imminent fiery end to the world – is the literal word of God; and millions have been duped in an earlier age by snake oil salesmen, snake charmers, hucksters, big tent preachers, side show carny barkers, and vaudevillian charmers.  

Tens of millions believe in wild conspiracy theories circulating virally on social media – alien invasions, fluoride mind control, international financial cabals, and many others even more far fetched. Millions recount their personal encounter with aliens, and tens of millions more with Jesus.   How can we not believe the most incredible stories of doom and annihilation?

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We were not always this way.  Americans not long ago were a hardy lot, afraid of nothing.   Our ancestors braved and survived malaria, yellow fever, dengue, and infection to tame the overgrown bottomland of the Mississippi Delta, the Northern Neck of Virginia, and the pestilential swamps of North Carolina.  

They fought and killed the Indians of the Western plains to make the range habitable for cultivation and residence.  Our great grandfathers fought and killed Mexicans to reclaim lands rightfully theirs.  Our forefathers drove cattle from the Mexican border to the Montana prairies, settled on virgin land and made the dream of Jefferson and Lewis and Clark a reality.

They in their great adventure were maimed, infected, snake-bit, crippled and disemboweled; and yet they persisted.  It was an adventure with death and disease but one of high purpose and determination. The’Greatest Generation’ of World War II was not the first but one of many in the history of the United States – generations of uncommon courage, steadfastness, and honor.

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Along comes the COVID pandemic, and we shake in our boots.  Forget the fact that the death rate is high only in the immune-compromised and the elderly (most of whom are immune compromised in some way) populations.  Forget that the disease causes either no symptoms or mild symptoms in young, healthy people – the demographic majority.  Forget the fact that deaths from cardiovascular disease per year far outnumber COVID deaths at the height of the epidemic.  Forget the fact that over 3 million deaths occur every year in the United States, only a small fraction of which were due to COVID.

Not only do we overreact because of an innate cultural assumption of imminent holocaust, because of a similarly culturally innate credulousness; and because of self-serving progressive arguments about disaster and necessary communitarian, government response, we feel entitled to our four-score-and-twenty years, however spent.

The life expectancy at the time of the Napoleonic Wars was barely more than 30 years.  If death was certain at that young age, then why not die gloriously on the battlefield rather than from snakebite?

Pierre (War and Peace) has noted something else – a spirit and camaraderie that seemed to ignore death and dying:

The booming cannonade and the fusillade of musketry were growing
more intense over the whole field, especially to the left where
Bagration’s fleches were, but where Pierre was the smoke of the firing
made it almost impossible to distinguish anything. Moreover, his
whole attention was engrossed by watching the family circle –
separated from all else – formed by the men in the battery. […] Pierre
did not look out at the battlefield and was not concerned to know what
was happening there; he was entirely absorbed in watching this fire
which burned even more brightly and which he felt was flaming up in
the same way in his own soul.

Even though the battle became more dangerous and threatening, the spirits of the men never flagged, and to Pierre’s surprise increased:

Pierre noticed that after every ball that hit the redoubt, and after every
loss, the liveliness increased more and more. As the flames of the fire
hidden within come more and more vividly and rapidly from an
approaching thundercloud, so, as if in opposition to what was taking
place, the lightning of hidden fire growing more and more intense
glowed in the faces of these men

This was more than Henry V’s band of brothers at Agincourt.

Something else animated the spirit of the soldiers – an indefinable sense of humanity, life, and the exhilaration of war. It is more than morale, discipline, or even patriotism.  Pierre saw in the almost happy faces of his comrades a complete, transforming, and overwhelming drive.

By ten o’clock some twenty men had already been carried away from
the battery; two guns were smashed and cannon balls fell more and
more frequently on the battery and spent bullets buzzed and whistled
around. But the men in the battery seemed not to notice this, and merry
voices and jokes were heard on all sides.

Progressivism in the United States deliberately does not pride itself on courage, valor, duty, and fearlessness but on cautious communitarianism, Utopianism and wariness.  Wars are no longer fought for victory, but for compromised stalemate. Better to win conditionally and save military and civilian lives than to win at all costs.   Life has been ascribed an absolute value, not a value only measured by honor, heroism, or high achievement.

So it is no surprise that the Biden Administration has projected a Chicken Little, Afraid-Of-One’s-Own-Shadow approach to COVID; and it is certainly no surprise that liberals in power are relishing the almost uncontested imposition or government lockdowns, shutdowns, and mask mandates.

Nor is it a surprise that the latest government ‘it’s the science’ flip-flops and the unnecessary imposition of restrictions and mandates have finally awakened the sleeping giant of the American people.  Basta! Enough is enough!

Where are you going? - asks Foxey Loxey.

Do you know where he lives? asks the fox.

I don't, says Chicken Little.

I don't, says Henny Penny.

I don't, says Ducky Lucky.

I do, says Foxey Loxey. Come with me and I can show you the way.

He walks on and on until he comes to his den.

Come right in, says Foxey Loxey.

They all go in, but they never, never come out again.

Friday, July 30, 2021

The Perfect Storm–Mask Mandates, Citizen Rollover, And Government Autocracy

Sam Perkins lived in the Idaho Panhandle in a log cabin in the high mountain forest, off the radar, remote, secure, and the last bastion against government interventionism.  He and his brothers remembered Waco, the FBI assault on the Branch Davidian complex, and the slaughter of innocent women and children.  ‘Nevermore’ was emblazoned on the escutcheon carved over the door; and Sam and the other members of the small, insurrectionist community he had founded meant it.  

Not only would they protect this, their land, but this, their sovereignty.  No government agent would ever set foot within ten miles of their sanctuary or would be met with a firestorm never before imagined.  Sam and his brothers had amassed an arsenal far more complete than David Koresh ever had – an armory of assault rifles, machine guns, bazookas, rocket launchers, grenades, and napalm – and they were willing and ready to use it.

Image result for Images Poe Nevermore. Size: 172 x 99. Source: www.lovethispic.com

Although they lived in the far woods, they had not cut themselves off from civilization.  They were not hippies or social refugees. The roof of their cabin sprouted the latest in communication equipment with which they monitored police, federal, and citizen band transmissions and via satellite linked high-resolution optics surveyed the entire north Idaho territory. 

They monitored both network broadcasting and key social media, and kept abreast of the political developments which could lead to armed government intervention. The cabin was equipped with much of the same surveillance, data tracking, spyware as the CIA, and the banks of telecommunication equipment, satellite up- and downlink software, and sophisticated hacking and anti-hacking tools was not unlike those feeding the White House war room.

When they drove the 100 miles into town for provisions, they rode in an Oldsmobile sedan and dressed like Mormon missionaries.  No one would have expected these mild-mannered, ordinary-looking men to be anything other than proud, patriotic, and duty-bound Idahoans.

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The COVID pandemic had passed them by.  Although they were well aware of it thanks to their media surveillance, they paid little attention.  There was certainly no threat from the virus this far off the grid, and the town where they provisioned was barely a dot on the map. 

However the political and social import of the pandemic quickly became clear; and the more they watched and listened, the more they were convinced that the government response, cloaked as it was within predictable public health nostrums, was a thinly-veiled opportunity for government hegemony. 

Washington had been waiting for decades for the opportunity to finally and once and for all un-man American society – to neuter its pride, patriotism, Old Western independence, and individualism, and to make it over into a socialist model. 

Sam and his brothers talked of their American ancestors who braved and survived malaria, yellow fever, dengue, and infection to tame the overgrown bottomland of the Mississippi Delta, the Northern Neck of Virginia, and the pestilential swamps of North Carolina.  Those ancestors who fought and killed the Indians of the Western plains and made them habitable for cultivation and residence.  Those great grandfathers who fought and killed Mexicans to reclaim lands rightfully theirs.  Those forefathers who drove cattle from the Mexican border to the Montana prairies, settled on virgin land and made the dream of Jefferson and Lewis and Clark a reality.

Image result for images lewis and clark

They in their great adventure had been maimed, infected, snake-bit, crippled and disemboweled along the way; and yet they persisted.  It was an adventure fraught with death and disease but one of high purpose and determination.  The’ Greatest Generation’ of World War II was not the first but one of many in the history of the United States – generations of uncommon courage, steadfastness, and honor.

As the news became more focused on the pandemic, Sam was both angered and incensed by its insidious spread – not just the virus but the government interventionism which followed. The Biden Administration was engaged in the most egregious arrogation of power that the nation had ever seen; and yet township after township, citizen after citizen rolled over like lapdogs and accepted insolent, quiet aggression. 

This was no banana republic violent coup.  It was takeover by insidious means, creating an enemy within to justify its assumption of absolute power. One by one the states followed suit, instituted and enforced lockdowns, mask mandates, and punitive, retributive action against those who refused. 

Only a few governors and mayors pushed back against this federal intrusion.  There might be public health measures to be taken, but not so restrictive as to deny civil and individual rights, to destroy local economies, and to create social mistrust and disharmony.

Sam and his brothers watched in dismay and disbelief as they watched the President tiptoe through his schedule, masked and ‘socially distanced’, afraid of his own shadow and sending a message of craven surrender. 

Of course, he was only a puppet in a White House run by his Rasputin, the Vice President, as calculating and vixenous a woman who had ever held public office.  She told him to project fear and, through the image of his timid capitulation to the epidemic, encourage others’ capitulation – not to the virus but to government authority.

Image result for Images Rasputin. Size: 141 x 204. Source: www.themost10.com

As the vaccines spread and the incidence of new cases dropped, the government decided to ride a new hobbyhorse – the Delta Variant – an unexpected, highly infectious form of the virus that they insisted was threatening the country. 

Of course it was not. Vaccinated people who somehow contracted the new strain came down with little more than a cold, and the disease produced in unvaccinated people was no different than the original strain.  A tempest in a teacup, bald-faced manipulation of 'the science', more government chicanery and abuse. 

Despite the evidence Biden and his shills downplayed the effectiveness of the vaccines and continued to hype mandates, government lockdowns, punitive enforcement and de facto government takeover of municipal and state institutions.

Sam and his brothers were blindsided.  So intent were they on defending themselves against a Waco-like assault; and so vividly did they see martial law and the violent insurrection that would be mounted against it, that they missed the insidious, peaceful assault now well underway.  

There were no barricades to be stormed, no firefights in which to engage.  There were no lines of battle, guerilla warfare, or battlefield strategy.  The government – thanks to the lickspittle cowing of the American people – had taken over without a shot being fired.  The few pockets of resistance were ineffective against the full-frontal government assault. 

Image result for Images FBI Waco Assault David Koresh. Size: 180 x 108. Source: history.com

Masks for so long a complaisant symbol of ‘doing the right thing’, a flag of dutiful obedience to government and ‘science’ and flown proudly by credulous progressives, now were symbols of the Biden gulag – an item of prison gear, a muzzle.

The frustration in the Idaho cabin was palpable.  The government’s blanket of repression had been cast over the country with people welcoming its 'protection'. Without the complaisance – the capitulation – of the American people, such government autocracy would never have been possible. A nation of sheep.

As bad as this public health charade was, agreed cabinmates, the government’s program to reconfigure American society in its own deformed image was even worse.  Progressives were engineering a sexually deformed society, cancelling Independence Day parades and replacing them with San Francisco Bay-to-Breakers gay extravaganzas.  Worst of all America was becoming a place where free enterprise and economic opportunity were replaced by bureaucratic, authoritarian socialism.

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It was, Sam and his friends concluded, the perfect storm – an authoritarian, anti-historical, perversely determined government; and a complaisant, rolled-over, weak and uncomplaining populace willing to accept anything.

This understanding was cold comfort.  It only highlighted their own powerlessness.  They were an insurrectionist group without popular support.  

Although they thought of themselves as Che Guevara-like revolutionaries in the Sierra Maestra, they had no thousands of disaffected supporters in the lowlands.  They were increasingly isolated and alone, without the necessary tools for revolt – a revolt which would have to be mounted electronically, politically, and progressively. A battle of information and disinformation, public relations and snake oil hucksterism until the citizenry finally coalesced into a rebellious majority.  

But Sam and his crew could only watch.  They had prepared for the wrong fight and now were left on the sidelines.

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They dismantled their satellite dishes, electronic surveillance equipment, computer grid, and hi-tech software systems.  They sold most of their weapons at Idaho gun fairs, but kept enough, just in case. 

Yet they stayed angry and militant to a man. This outrage, this arrogation of power, this historical absurdity would not stand, but unfortunately not at their hands.