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Some Covid Links

Tweet [1]

Jenin Younes, writing in the Wall Street Journal, argues that “forced Covid vaccinations for kids is unlawful” – and also unethical [2]. A slice:

A new statute permitting mandates for EUA products would be unconstitutional as well. Children have a right to bodily autonomy and to refuse unnecessary medical treatment, which their parents exercise on their behalf. The government can’t conscript them as guinea pigs or vessels to protect adults. Young children face virtually no risk from Covid-19 and the mandates mainly serve to assuage adult fear. Young children rarely infect adults, who in any event have had access to vaccines for many months. And children pose no threat to anyone if they have natural immunity.

Jacob Sullum rightly criticizes CDC Director Rochelle Walensky for making baseless, exaggerated claims about masks [3]. Here’s his conclusion:

Given the gap between the study and Walensky’s interpretation of it, she should have avoided the false precision of that “more than 80%” number altogether. You might think a public health official who has repeatedly caught flak [4] for distorting [5] COVID-19 research would have learned to be more careful when presenting scientific findings to the public. Walensky’s mask hyperbole not only further undermines her credibility; it implicitly makes masking look superior to vaccination as a tool for avoiding COVID-19 and preventing its spread, which is hardly a message conducive to public health.

Also worrying about – and warning of – mandated Covid vaccination of children is Richard Koenig [6].

Jordan Davidson reports that Covid Derangement Syndrome is taking a terrible toll among “public-health experts.” [7] A slice:

In a survey [8] of 28 health experts, epidemiologists, immunologists, and virologists, STAT found that a majority were willing to sacrifice in-person social events and activities such as working out in a gym, traveling on public transportation, and even family holiday gatherings to stay home and theoretically avoid the virus.

When asked whether they would be comfortable joining a Thanksgiving gathering with people of all ages and vaccination statuses, 12 of the 28 said they wouldn’t go. Four of the 14 who said they would attend said that the reason someone was unvaccinated would play a role in their decision whether to go. One evolutionary biologist remarked that she was fine with unvaccinated guests who were ineligible for the shot but would not break bread with any eligible parties who opted not to get the jab.

Here’s a CNBC headline: “White House tells businesses to proceed with vaccine mandate despite court-ordered pause.” [9]

gatito bueno reacts to the above CNBC headline [10]…. and Amy leaves this comment on gatito’s post:

This is a disaster. I live in a Democratic run state and since I am a licensed healthcare provider, an RN, I am mandated to take this medication. A medication I do not want or need. As an RN, working in Emergency Rooms, I have been exposed to not only Covid 19, but the seasonal flu, I worked thru the swine flu epidemic as well as the SARS epidemic. I have started IV’s on HIV positive, Hep B positive, drug addicts unconscious from OD’s etc. I have never felt that my health was in jeopardy and since continued education is mandatory to maintain your RN license, I try and stay up on the most prevalent issues concerning healthcare. I have not had a flu for over 30 years, I am not the picture of health but I don’t smoke or drink. I certainly do not need anyone telling me how to take care of myself, or my family. Yet my ability to support myself and my household hinges on being subjected to having something injected into me that is unnecessary. This is not the America, or world, that I want to be a part of.

“Ten states sue the U.S. over the vaccine mandate for health care workers” – so reads a headline in the New York Times [11]. Here are the opening paragraphs:

Ten states filed a lawsuit on Wednesday seeking to block the Biden administration’s coronavirus vaccine mandate [12] for health care workers, on the heels of a court decision [13] that temporarily halted the broader U.S. requirement that workers of all large employers be vaccinated or undergo weekly testing.

The new suit, filed in U.S. District Court in eastern Missouri, claims that the rule issued last week by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services “threatens with job loss millions of health care workers who risked their lives in the early days of the Covid-19 pandemic to care for strangers and friends in their communities.”

The 10 states also argue that the rule “threatens to exacerbate an alarming shortage of health care workers, particularly in rural communities, that has already reached a boiling point.” They say any further losses will endanger patients, causing “devastating adverse effects on health care services.”

Annabel Fenwick Elliott resists Covidocratic tyranny [14].

But the important thing is that what these children will suffer or die from is not the lone ailment for which it is unacceptable to suffer and die: Covid-19 [15]. (HT Jay Bhattacharya [16])

Jacob Howland decries what he rightly calls America’s “Covid despots.” [17] Two slices:

I note rather that the logic of 21st-century technocratic despotism was spelled out long ago in Plato’s Republic. In that dialogue, a class of self-styled experts — the philosopher-kings and their academically-trained ministers — considers its exclusive claim to a science of politics as a title to rule. Contemptuous of what they regard as the ignorant many, they treat their fellow citizens as subjects to be manipulated, and for reasons Matthew Crawford suggested in his essay on the new public health despotism.

They do so first, because persuasion takes time and effort and is less efficient than other available methods for achieving the desired results. In a democratic republic, this is a fundamental corruption of power. Second, because the notion that governance is an applied science or techne encourages the idea that human beings are basically raw materials to be shaped and stamped, like blanks at the Denver mint. Left unchecked, the state’s fundamentally idolatrous desire to coin young souls exclusively in its own image leads to the destruction of the family. The Attorney General’s attempt effectively to criminalise parental veto over public school curricula is a step in this direction. And third, because technocratic elites are inclined to regard the unsophisticated many as cognitively impaired. In the Beautiful City of the Republic, the rulers’ medicinal lies are justified on the ground that one wouldn’t give weapons to madmen. Just so, Dr Fauci’s supposedly noble lies [18] about Covid presuppose that Americans are too sick to be entrusted with the truth.

It is hard to exaggerate the extent to which the therapeutic idiom of bureaucracies has taken hold in United States.

…..

This question of risk goes to the heart of the problem Crawford raised [19]. Failure to comply with Covid regulations is presumed to be irrational because it exposes the populace to unnecessary dangers. But risk is always relative to possible outcomes, which today are seen darkly through a glass of psychological and physical safetyism. To take a real example, does the possibility that a student might suffer psychic injury from a book spine justify removing a volume entitled American Negro Poetry from a high school library? But what sort of injury are we talking about? And how does it compare to the possibility that a student will never hear Langston Hughes sing America or speak of rivers, or dream a world “where every man is free”? And above all, who has the right to decide these matters?

Our technocratic mandarins dislike such questions and recoil from the political uncertainties of democratic debate. Whatever its psychological causes, their longing for certainty in practice leads them to insist on it in theory, and so to end debate by any means necessary. This is an engine of comprehensive despotism because it can be satisfied only with the advent of univocal global answers.

Tonia Buxton calls Australia’s and New Zealand’s Covid restrictions “horrific.” [20]

Prompted by this report [21] in The Straits Times, Phil Magness (on Facebook) comments [22]:

The Chinese government still thinks that Covid can be spread by the mail.

These are the same people that the ZeroCovid kooks and self-described “lockdown fascist” Sam Bowman have been praising for their Covid response.