The further to the left or the right you move, the more your lens on life distorts.

Sunday, March 22, 2020

Accountability? Nope.

In the age of Trump everything is political. The COVID-19 virus follows the natural progression of all epidemiological outbreaks and the number of cases and deaths among older, health-compromised citizens increase. As this happens, the main stream media is working hard at two things: (1) context-free reporting intended to increase the fear among the general populace, and (2) trying to lay the blame for COVID-19 and its predictable spread on the Trump administration in general and Donald Trump in particular. Michael Goodwin comments:
... after failing to bring down Trump with Russia, Russia, Russia and impeachment, [the media is] now putting their chips on the narrative that he’s bungling the public health crisis.

To get there, they’ve had to reverse themselves on a key allegation. For three years the same media told us Trump was a fascist and a budding Hitler, but now his refusal to rule with an iron fist is also cause for condemnation.

Suddenly, the man whose “Authoritarian style is remaking America” (Washington Post), and whose “Authoritarian Ambitions” were exposed by impeachment (New York magazine), foolishly refuses to use the powers of the Oval Office. As usual, other countries are doing it right and America is wrong.

When Trump advised people to stop unnecessary travel and avoid bars, restaurants and groups of more than 10, a Times headline moaned that the “Guidelines Fall Short of the Mandates in Other Countries.”

The Gray Lady’s latest complaints involve the Defense Protection Act, which gives the president the authority to commandeer private industry. But he’s a lousy authoritarian because, as the Times put it Friday, “Trump Resists Pressure to Force Companies to Make Coronavirus Supplies.”

Behind every complaint is a roster of anonymous sources and Obama administration grousers.

Meanwhile, because of its one-track agenda, the media are missing one of the biggest stories — the sense of unity against the epidemic being forged across America.

Even Dem presidential candidates Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders largely slipped out of sight, a welcome sign that they realize now is not the time to try to score political points.

And the public, despite the media, gets it that the president is doing his best against an unprecedented and invisible enemy. Polls reflect a belief that, after a slow start, Trump is mobilizing an enormous national response involving both the public and private sectors and is committed to victory.
At first, a lack of comprehensive testing was the media boogie man—as if that alone would stop the spread of a global pandemic. Now millions of COVID-19 test kits are coming on-line, so the media shifted to Ventilators.* Here's a thought: When 9,000 to 13,000 mostly older people died in the US in 2009 (CDC data) due to complications arising from the H1N1 (swine flu) epidemic, why didn't the then-Democrat administration (Barack Obama was in the first year of his presidency) order thousands ... no wait, hundreds of thousands, no wait ... millions of ventilators over the 7 years he remained president? Nobody's asking that question. But Obama was probably correct in not stock-piling that equipment because a stockpile of ventilators alone would not stop the majority of deaths among health compromised seniors.

Just this morning, the trained hamsters in the media castigated Trump for not nationalizing industry to produce ... what exactly? Ventilators? That's already in the works. Masks? tens of millions will be available within a few days. Vaccine? Working on it but it takes time. Other treatment options? Read the next paragraph.

In one of the most egregious displays of media bias, the trained hamsters jumped on Trump's recent suggestion that the drugs, hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin** might be used to help in the most severe COVID-19 cases. Data from small samples in Italy indication some efficacy, yet if you were to believe the media, Trump's suggestion was somehow "confused" or "crazy" or "dangerous" or counter to what a god-like Dr. Fauci would recommend. None of that is true, of course, but it does serve to further roil public attitudes—exactly what the trained hamsters want. In one of the most egregious media plays, Bloomberg (then picked up by many other left-leaning media outlets) went so far as to suggest that hydroxychloroquine would poison people—a blatant lie based on doses that are 100 times larger than recommended prescription doses.

All of this further erodes trust in the media. In this case, as well as others, they have become partisan shills that try to inflame public opinion and sentiment, rather than inform. The irony is while they demand "accountability" from everyone else, they avoid any accountability themselves.


* In today's news, an innovative Canadian anesthesiologist used a DIY modification to transform a single-patient ventilator into one that can simultaneously treat nine (9) people. The mods take less than an hour. That should put a dent in the shortage of ventilators -- don't you think? I wonder when the main stream media will report this story with as much enthusiasm and coverage as they've reported all the COVID-19 negative news? Nah ... won't happen.

** Looks like a few major drug companies think there's something to the hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin treatment regimen for severe COVID-19 cases. Novartis, Bayer and Teva, among others, have indicated they'll be producing over 300 million doses soon. I wonder when the main stream media will report this story with as much enthusiasm and coverage as they've reported all the COVID-19 negative news? Nah ... won't happen.