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

Thursday, December 31, 2020

2020—Year of the "trump"

On this last day of 2020, I think it's fair to say this has been "the year of the trump." No ... I don't mean Donald J. Trump, the 45th President of the United States, who will be leaving office in just about three weeks. I mean trump, which according to one on-line dictionary means:

trump  /trəmp/ verb  def. "to outrank or defeat someone or something, often in a highly public way."

Let's take a look at 2020—the year of the trump— first, through the lens of the pandemic:

  • Appeals to the authority of "experts" trumped common sense and past experience, even though the "experts" were consistently wrong in their models, their predictions (e.g., no vaccine until late in 2021, at best), and their proposed policies.
  • Media propaganda trumped honest, context-based reporting, leading to fear, uncertainty and doubt (FUD) among a significant percentage of the public.
  • Media bias trumped journalistic ethics, meaning that any pandemic-related news that would hurt a hated president was dishonestly amplified while news that might help him was relegated to metaphorical page 37 or omitted altogether.
  • Claims of "following the science" trumped actual peer reviewed science resulting in unnecessary and ineffective strategies like city/state lockdowns, closing of schools, and wearing of masks in outdoor settings. Each of these has been shown to be ineffective in stopping the virus and worse, often does far more harm that good.
  • Team Apocalypse trumped Team Reality and therefore ...
  • Hysteria trumped a calm, reasoned assessment of the threat of COVID-19, leading to ridiculous, illogical, and damaging policies at the state and local levels.
On a more pandemic-positive note:
On the political front:
2020 has been a difficult year for many and a disastrous year for those who have become caught up in the petty dictates of blue state governors and mayors. Surely, people who have lost their livelihoods and businesses and incurred debt that may ultimately lead to bankruptcy will be happy to see the year pass into the record books.

Let's hope that in 2021, rational thinking, solid, effective policies, and calm, determined leadership return and trump the hysteria-driven policies of 2020. If those policies are permitted to continue, our social fabric will fray, then tear. I'm hopeful that doesn't happen, but I have little faith that the new president and his team are up the the difficult task of prevailed over the those who currently control the narrative. 

Despite it all, smiles should trump frowns. Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 29, 2020

3 Seconds

 A few days ago I posted a critique of Critical Social Justice Theory (CSJT)—an ideology that has infiltrated college campuses, much of the media, and increasingly, a depressing percentage of corporate America. Over the past few days, a small story broke that provides a solid indication of how CSJT is being used as a weapon for retribution. Even worse, mainstream media defend its use as a bludgeon that enables cancel culture, suggesting that anyone who wields the weapon is somehow doing so to eradicate "racism" or some other "ism." Collateral damage? Who cares.

Eddie Scarry comments:

There's a story in the New York Times this week that everyone should read in order to get a full grasp of how out of control and scary the race-baiting monsters of the so-called "Social Justice movement" can be.

The article, headlined, "Slur, Surfacing on Old Video, Alters Young Lives and a Town," tells the tale of a white high school student in Virginia who saw her future as an athlete at a major university go up in smoke after one of her peers, who is biracial, shared online a years-old video of the first student casually using the N-word.

Jimmy Galligan, the black student, chillingly says at the very end of the story, "I’m going to remind myself, you started something. You taught someone a lesson.”

The New York Times frames the depressing affair in the context of our never-ending nightmare that the media have dubbed a "racial reckoning," when really it's about the havoc caused by "social justice" advocates who intimidate and harass innocent people while claiming the moral high ground.

Fifteen year-old Groves showed poor judgement when she used the lyric, "I can drive, <N-word>" from a rap song (it might be reasonable to ask why SJWs aren't "outraged at the rap artist for using the lyric, but that's another matter) to demonstrate her excitement after getting a driver's permit. Young people make dumb mistakes and do distasteful stuff. In this case, Groves did NOT verbally attack any individual, did not try to hurt anyone, and limited her comment to a private message to a friend.

Somehow, her 3-second video got into the hands of a SJW and the rest is history. Scarry continues: 

"He tucked the video away, deciding to post it publicly when the time was right," the New York Times said. It wasn't until after protests for the death of George Floyd were underway that Galligan decided it was time to blow up Groves's dreams of attending the University of Tennessee, which had sent her an acceptance letter and granted her a spot on the school's cheerleading team.

"Mr. Galligan, who had waited until Ms. Groves had chosen a college, had publicly posted the video that afternoon," the story said. "Within hours, it had been shared to Snapchat, TikTok and Twitter, where furious calls mounted for the University of Tennessee to revoke its admission offer."

The university, in response, removed Groves from the cheer team and told her she should reconsider enrolling. She withdrew her acceptance and ended up attending an online community college.

The incident, the New York Times said, revealed a "complex portrait of behavior that for generations had gone unchecked in schools in one of the nation’s wealthiest counties, where Black students said they had long been subjected to ridicule."

Nonsense. Galligan wasn't ridiculed by Groves. He wasn't the intended recipient of the video, which he didn't even see until three years after it was recorded.

Galligan's intentions were rotten ...

That's what "social justice" advocates do — tear people down in order to feel morally superior. It's sick.

Wouldn't it have been better if the SJW, Galligan, met with Groves before she went off to college. He could have indicated that her use of the lyric, however innocent (or not), could still be considered offensive and counsel her to avoid anything like that in the future. Instead he destroyed her immediate future. Yeah, that's really "moral," isn't it?

But sadly, doing the right thing wouldn't have given Galligan the moral preening opportunity that his actions afforded. And at the end of the day, that's what the actions of SJWs are all about—letting us know just how morally superior they all are. 

Monday, December 28, 2020


I suspect that there were tens of thousands of bloggers who publicly objected to lockdowns when they were first proposed to control COVID-19 as it began to spread in March, 2020. I was one of them (e.g., here, here, and here).

Governors in blue states (e.g., Cuomo, Whitmer, Newsom, Northam) have continued to act as petty dictators over the intervening months, ruining lives and livelihoods, destroying small businesses, creating collateral public health problems and accomplishing little if anything that has worked to slow the spread of the virus. Pushback has been continuous, but progressives and their leaders continue their lockdowns along with never-ending virtue signaling supported by widespread, media driven hysteria.

The American Institute for Economic Research (AIER) has taken a hard look at the efficacy of lockdowns and writes:

The use of universal lockdowns in the event of the appearance of a new pathogen has no precedent. It has been a science experiment in real time, with most of the human population used as lab rats. The costs are legion. 

The question is whether lockdowns worked to control the virus in a way that is scientifically verifiable. Based on the following studies, the answer is no and for a variety of reasons: bad data, no correlations, no causal demonstration, anomalous exceptions, and so on. There is no relationship between lockdowns (or whatever else people want to call them to mask their true nature) and virus control. 

Perhaps this is a shocking revelation, given that universal social and economic controls are becoming the new orthodoxy. In a saner world, the burden of proof really should belong to the lockdowners, since it is they who overthrew 100 years of public-health wisdom and replaced it with an untested, top-down imposition on freedom and human rights. They never accepted that burden. They took it as axiomatic that a virus could be intimidated and frightened by credentials, edicts, speeches, and masked gendarmes. 

The pro-lockdown evidence is shockingly thin, and based largely on comparing real-world outcomes against dire computer-generated forecasts derived from empirically untested models, and then merely positing that stringencies and “nonpharmaceutical interventions” account for the difference between the fictionalized vs. the real outcome. The anti-lockdown studies, on the other hand, are evidence-based, robust, and thorough, grappling with the data we have (with all its flaws) and looking at the results in light of controls on the population. 

Blue state governors have, in fact, conducted "a science experiment in real time, with most of the human population used as lab rats." The problem is that those same governors are woefully ignorant of science, statistics or data analysis and care little for the "lab rats" that have been forced to participate in their irresponsible experiment.

AIER provides links and summaries to 24 scientific papers (spend some time reviewing a few) that present hard data indicating that lockdowns don't work. As an example, consider this paper which concluded that “full lockdowns and wide-spread COVID-19 testing were not associated with reductions in the number of critical cases or overall mortality.” 

Even worse, data collected after lockdowns have been imposed indicate that they do far more harm that good. You'd think that the media might take a look and begin to honestly inform the public that sainted blue state Governors such as Cuomo and Newsom made catastrophic errors that not only don't "follow the science" but in fact, are in direct conflict with it. Or maybe Anthony Fauci, MD might call a news conference and discuss why his lockdown recommendations should continue to be followed in light of peer-reviewed scientific findings that inidcate that lockdowns don't work. But no ... all of that might harm the catastrophist narrative, so covidiocy continues.


Karol Markowicz discusses a cancel culture that makes many Americans, particularly the few progressives who recognize the idiocy and ineffectiveness of business and school closures, afraid to voice an opinion that doesn't conform with the catastrophists who use their masks as a mode of virtue signaling. She writes:

Schools had been open in other countries for months, and they were all reporting lower positivity rates than their surrounding communities. My arguments were measured and evidence-based: The data were making the case for reopening schools all by themselves.

Yet most of the rest of the media seemed determined to tell the story from only one perspective: that of lockdown hard-liners, not least teacher-union bosses. This paper aside, very few outlets pushed for school openings. 

On the left, the conversation is heavily policed, with clear red lines drawn around “unacceptable” opinion. Reopening schools was treated as “irresponsible,” even though the numbers said otherwise. It wasn’t until Oct. 9 when things began to shift. That’s when a piece headlined “Schools Aren’t Super-Spreaders” appeared in The Atlantic. The piece didn’t exactly break new ground. What mattered is that it appeared in a liberal publication. That made it OK to believe and say what even many liberal parents knew but didn’t dare voice. 

In the main body of this post, I reference irrefutable and voluminous evidence that business lockdowns are as ineffective in combating the virus as school closures. To the best of my knowledge virtually none of this has been referenced in the mainstream media. Those of us who discuss these studies and argue that the destruction of lives and livelihoods is irresponsible and borderline insane are accused of being "uncaring."

Markowicz notes that Team Apocalypse membership is overwhelmingly progressive. Its members think, as usual, that they're the smartest most "scientifically" responsible kids in the room as they propose "solutions" to the viral spread that don't work (e.g., consider the recent spread in CA which has the strictest lockdown in the nation) but do cause great and unnecessary damage. 

Very few on the left have pointed out that, hey, these lockdowns don’t seem to be working at all. The groupthink on the left is fiercely enforced.

One liberal mom who frequently engages me online, anonymously, told me she’s afraid of having her livelihood targeted for speaking out on schools. “I will not use my real name and identity, because it is widely known that the activist community purposely baits people with racially charged statements, for the sole purpose of trapping someone and reporting their content to an employer.”

And it’s not just about schools. New York City restaurants remain closed for indoor dining, even though Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s own statistics show they account for 1.4 percent of cases. Indoor dining ­remains open in the rest of the state, despite their case numbers being higher than in the city.

There has been no pushback against this, neither from liberal outlets nor most Democratic politicians. The “Believe in Science” political mantra trumps everything, not least actual scientific reasoning. There’s no introspection on why mostly locked-down New York and California have more cases than mostly open Florida. 

Introspection? From the Left? You've got to be kidding.

Sunday, December 27, 2020


As I do at the end of almost every year, I just sent out a number of charitable donations, including one to my alma mater, The University of Connecticut. My donation to UConn was accompanied by instructions that the funds be used for the Engineering School only. The engineering curriculum continues to teach practical problem solving skills and demands a degree of critical thinking that often avoids the kinds of fantasy solutions that are becoming more and more common in our society today.

I requested that my donation be specifically targeted because far too many schools within UConn, along with virtually every other major university throughout the United States, have become proponents of one or more elements of Critical Social Justice Theory (CSJT), often referred to as "wokeness." I cannot and will not allow my donation to be used to support an ideology that I believe is destructive to learning in general and society at large.

Far too many university administrators and academic programs worship at the alter of Critical Social Justice Theory. And as a consequence, they have been consuming by an ideology that looks at knowledge through a lens that sees systemic racism at every turn, gender politics as the reason for unequal representation in different fields, capitalism as as evil that drives poverty and inequality, and socialism as a utopian ideal (despite a long history that belies that notion). Instead of encouraging debate on these beliefs, advocates of CSJT (and hence, a non-trivial percentage of the professoriate at many universities) abhor free speech, cancel those who speak out, and censor ideas that conflict with their often dubious theories.

A writer who uses the pseudonym, Samatha Jones, comments:

I have a Ph.D. in Women’s Studies, but I’m not woke anymore. I write under a pseudonym because, if my colleagues were to find out about my criticisms of this field, I would be unable to find any employment in academia. That someone who critiques the axioms of a field of study feels compelled to write under an assumed name tells you everything you need to know about the authoritarianism underpinning this ideology. I no longer believe that the fundamental ideas of Women’s Studies, and of Critical Social Justice more generally, describe reality; they are at best partial explanations—hyperbolic ideology, not fact-based analysis. I have seen this ideology up close and seen how it consumes and even destroys people, while dehumanizing anyone who dissents.

I’m sad to say it, but I believe that Critical Social Justice ideology—if not beaten in the war of ideas—will destroy the liberal foundation of American society. By liberal I mean principles including, but not limited to, constitutional republican government, equality under the law, due process, a commitment to reason and science, individual liberty, and freedom—of speech, of the press, and of religion. Because Critical Social Justice ideology is now the dominant paradigm in American academia, it has flowed into all other major societal institutions, the media, and even corporations. Far from being counter-cultural, Critical Social Justice ideology is now the cultural mainstream. A diverse spectrum of liberals, libertarians, conservatives, and all others who, to put it bluntly, want the American constitution to continue to serve as the basis for our society have to team up to prevent this ideology from destroying our country.

The content of anonymous commentary must be viewed judiciously, and what the writer claims about his/her background may or may not be true. But "Samantha's" critique of CSJT is on-target. 

Critical Social Justice Theory, like its cousin, Critical Race Theory (CRT), rages against a system that has brought more people (including the "oppressed" people it claims to support) out of poverty than any other system in the history of the human race. That system, exemplified by our constitution's guarantee of free speech and its suggestion that individuals, not the state, are responsible for their own futures, has offered more opportunity to more people than Critical Social Justice Theory ever could. CSJT is an angry ideology that promotes grievance, encourages certain groups to view themselves as victims, and advocates dependence (on the state).

"Samantha" adds an additional comment:

I realized that Critical Social Justice ideology is not only intellectually vacuous; it is downright dangerous, and that the reason it has captivated so many minds is not because of the strength of its ideas, but because it has succeeded in silencing more reasonable and time-tested principles. If I had encountered a wider variety of ideas in my undergraduate—and especially in my graduate—education, I would have been spared years of being captive to Critical Social Justice ideology; I would likely have changed my field of study to something more practical; I would have matured more quickly in understanding the complex, and sometimes tragic, nature of human behavior; and I would have developed a more rational, sustainable understanding of how to live in the world as a decent person, outside of the narrow framework of being an activist for “social justice.” If Critical Social Justice ideology had been presented in a more intellectually diverse educational landscape, I would have been able to properly assess the strengths and weaknesses of Critical Social Justice arguments. Sadly, American universities are, for the most part, not marketplaces of ideas, but mere echo chambers.

CSJT looks only at societal problems that reinforce its narrative by dishonestly amplifying them, and then proposes not solutions, but a polemic in which America (and more broadly, Western thought) is bad, and only grievance politics can fix it. 

CSJT is the offspring of the more benign political correctness of the 1980s and 1990s. What started as a modest attempt to point out societal biases has now become a new genetic strain, virulent, dangerous, and mean. It seeks not modest change, but aggressive, near-totalitarian  transformation. One can only wonder what the next generation of CSJT will bring. One thing is certain—it won't be good.


Because the arguments and policies that are at the core of CSJT are often vacuous, sometimes infantile, and almost always rather easy to refute, its proponents are enthusiastic believers in cancel culture. Write an opinion piece that is critical of some element of CSJT (e.g., radical feminist theory) and social justice warriors first express outrage, then level ad hominem attacks and name calling, and finally demand that the opinion piece be censored and the writer be sanctioned, banned from further publication, and removed from whatever position they hold in the real world. This has become so common that it's S.O.P. for CSJT.

In a truly entertaining commentary on the "Dr." Jill Biden story, The New Criterion describes how the original author, Joseph Epstein, of the controversial critique of Dr. Jill was cancelled by the Left. The demand to cancel him and remove his opinion piece from The Wall Street Journal was a coordinated campaign in the worst traditions of CSJT. The importance of Epstein's cancellation has little to do with the comical demand by Jill Biden that the honorific "Dr." be conspicuously applied whenever she is referenced. Rather, The New Criterion writes:

It is very rare that [WSJ Opinion Editor, Paul] Gigot responds in print to criticism of what appears in his pages [by an organized army of Biden protectors]. Doubtless this is because he understands that criticism is a natural part of the metabolism of opinion journalism. In the normal course of our political life, it is not only expected but salutary. People have different points of view about contentious issues. A respectful airing of those differences is or should be part of the lifeblood of democracy. If Gigot stepped into print over this contretemps, it was not so much to defend Epstein or even to respond to the chihuahua-like yapping of his interlocutors. It was to sound an alarm against that “big gun of identity politics” he found operating in the background.

The governing strategy of identity politics [a pivotal element of CSJT] is not to encourage free expression but to shutter it. In essence, it is a totalitarian enterprise, deploying the shibboleths of race, gender, and radical egalitarianism to enforce a stultifying conformity. [emphasis mine] It is heartening to see Gigot affirming that, at one of our nation’s most important newspapers, “these pages aren’t going to stop publishing provocative essays merely because they offend the new administration or the political censors in the media and academe.” If, as we suspect, the preview we just witnessed was a sort of sighting shot, it suggests that Gigot is going to have his hands full dealing with ever more intolerant efforts to “turn the page” and enforce ghastly new modes of “healing” and “unity.”

Heh ... "healing and unity" when espoused by the Left are almost as hollow as the "Dr." that they demand be placed before Jill Biden's name.

Thursday, December 24, 2020

A Pandemic of Misinformation

Team Apocalypse and its allies within the Democratic party have done everything possible to suppress the hard truths that swirl around COVID-19. For over 10 months the Team and its media allies have used fear, uncertainty, and doubt (FUD) to reinforce a catastrophist narrative. They have been strong advocates of policies that are not only ineffective, but harmful. They insist that its all about "following the science" and/or "listening to the scientists," even though there is little if any science to support their actions, and they pick and choose to listen to only those scientists that reinforce their narrative (Anthony Fauci comes to mind.). They have done great damage to lives and livelihoods, and they will NOT be held accountable.

Among the many scientific voices who have tried to fight the Team's false and dangerous narrative is Scott Atlas, M.D.. Atlas has been vilified with ad hominem attacks (a leftist strategy that is intended to shut down anyone who questions their catastrophist narrative) even as the points he makes cannot be refuted. He writes about "a pandemic of misinformation:"

Americans need to understand three realities. First, all 50 states independently directed and implemented their own pandemic policies. In every case, governors and local officials were responsible for on-the-ground choices—every business limit, school closing, shelter-in-place order and mask requirement. No policy on any of these issues was set by the federal government, except those involving federal property and employees.

Second, nearly all states used the same draconian policies that people now insist on hardening, even though the number of positive cases increased while people’s movements were constrained, business activities were strictly limited, and schools were closed. Governors in all but a few states—Florida and South Dakota are notable exceptions—imposed curfews, quarantines, directives on group gatherings, and mask mandates ...

Third, the federal government’s role in the pandemic has been grossly mischaracterized by the media and their Democratic allies. That distortion has obscured several significant successes, while undermining the confidence of ordinary Americans. Federal financial support and directives enabled the development of a massive, state-of-the-art testing capacity and produced billions of dollars of personal protective equipment. Federal agencies met all requests for supplemental medical personnel and hospital-bed capacity. Officials in the Health and Human Services Department have told me there are no unmet requests for extra resources.

And with all of that, the virus spread, cases rose, and deaths among the old and the infirm grew. The reality is that COVID-19 followed the path of other SARS viruses. Although it was somewhat more virulent, the extreme measures adopted within a number of blue states did nothing to stop the spread and at the same time, did great harm to those who couldn't metaphorically hide in their basements but had to venture out to work (or were not allowed to). Atlas continues:

In this season when respiratory virus illnesses become more common and people move indoors to keep warm, many states are turning to more severe restrictions on businesses and outdoor activities. Yet empirical data from the U.S., Europe and Japan show that lockdowns don’t eliminate the virus and don’t stop the virus from spreading. They do, however, create extremely harmful health and social problems beyond a dramatic drop in learning, including a tripling of reported depression, skyrocketing suicidal ideation, unreported child abuse, skipped visits for cancer and other medical care.

It adds up to a future health disaster. “For younger people, the lockdowns are so harmful, so deadly, there’s really no good justification,” says Stanford’s Jay Bhattacharya, especially when considering their extremely low risk from Covid-19.

States and cities that keep their economies locked down after highly vulnerable populations have been vaccinated will be doubling down on failed policies that are destroying families and sacrificing children, particularly among the working class and poor.

The media has done its best to misinform the public with political attacks about who is to blame for this pain and misery even as it diminishes the great achievement of the new vaccines. The decline of objectivity in journalism has been evident for years. Now we see that even respected scientific journals, which are supposed to vet and publish the best objective research, have been contaminated by politics. Social media has become the arbiter of allowable discussion, while universities intimidate and suppress the free exchange of ideas necessary to uncover scientific truths.

Throughout this period the media has been despicable in its actions, its dishonesty, and its complicity to use the virus for political purposes. The media will pay no price for any of that and in fact, achieved its political aims by contributing to the ascension of Joe Biden as president.


Although their attempt to control the narrative has now reached a point where legitimate criticism and hard scientific fact is being censored by far too many media outlets, the truth about the debacle created by Team Apocalypse (i.e., Democrats, media journo-hacks, government apparatchiks) is slowing beginning to reach the pubic consciousness. More and more citizens are pushing back against blue state politicians who have instituted freedom-crushing policies that are both ineffective and harmful.

Once the media determined that "case" count was a primary means for increasing FUD and therefore a potent political weapon, COVID-19 death scoreboards were augmented with corresponding "case" scoreboards. No matter that a significant percentage of cases are asymptomatic and the case count will naturally increase as testing increases exponentially (why else the demand for so much testing), "cases" became an irrational indictment of Trump and lead to his ouster from office.

The problem for Team Apocalypse and the case counters is that from 20% to as much as 70 percent of cases are asymptomatic (different studies show a broad range of results)—that is, the "infected" person exhibits no symptoms at all—none. Jeffrey Tucker comments:

Sometime in summer [in conjunction with the newfound emphasis on "cases"], the idea of asymptomatic spread started to trend, bit by bit. It finally went to an explosion of interest in the first week of June. It trailed off again until very recently.

Asymptomatic spread was the answer given to the great question: I’m not sick so why should I have to be locked down? Why are we quarantining the healthy? And what possibly could it mean, in any case, to be sick without symptoms? Why are half the PCR-positive tests assigned to people who otherwise seem to be perfectly fine? 

All these valid questions came to be answered by this one phrase: asymptomatic spread. You might not feel sick. You might not ever have symptoms from SARS-CoV-2. Still, you could be an even worse super spreader without knowing it, infecting people all around you who will carry it to people who will die from the disease. This was also the moment when, subtly and imperceptibly, we were being asked to think of our fellow citizens not as human beings with dignity and rights but pathogen-carrying disease vectors. We had to be masked, all of us, because we are secretly filthy and unclean: we cannot be allowed to breath near others, so even with a mask we must stay 6 feet away. 

(As I type these words, I feel sure that if anyone reads them in ten years, the reader will assume I’m writing fiction or engaged in wild hyperbole. To the future reader: this is all true.) 

On June 7, Dr. Maria Van Kerkhove, head of the WHO’s emerging diseases and zoonosis unit, told a press conference that from the known research, asymptomatic spread was “very rare.” “From the data we have, it still seems to be rare that an asymptomatic person actually transmits onward to a secondary individual.” She added for emphasis: “It’s very rare.”

In fact, a Chinese study indicates that:

Stringent COVID-19 control measures were imposed in Wuhan between January 23 and April 8, 2020. Estimates of the prevalence of infection following the release of restrictions could inform post-lockdown pandemic management. Here, we describe a city-wide SARS-CoV-2 nucleic acid screening programme between May 14 and June 1, 2020 in Wuhan. All city residents aged six years or older were eligible and 9,899,828 (92.9%) participated. No new symptomatic cases and 300 asymptomatic cases (detection rate 0.303/10,000, 95% CI 0.270–0.339/10,000) were identified. There were no positive tests amongst 1,174 close contacts of asymptomatic cases. 107 of 34,424 previously recovered COVID-19 patients tested positive again (re-positive rate 0.31%, 95% CI 0.423–0.574%). The prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 infection in Wuhan was therefore very low five to eight weeks after the end of lockdown.

"No positive cases among 1,174 close contacts.  NONE!! NOT ONE.

Gosh that means that many of the COVID "cases" reported are a threat to virtually no one. They're good for hyping hysteria, but not very good at transmitting the virus. I wonder when ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN, FOX, 60 Minutes, the NYT, WaPo, LAT ... are going the share that rather important information with us.

With every passing day, the idiocy of our misguided approach to COVID-19 becomes more apparent. Driven by a narrative that is both dishonest and anti-scientific, our country has suffered needlessly while in the grip of media-driven hysteria. The policies and half-truths fostered by Team Apocalypse are the reason.

Wednesday, December 23, 2020

Gracious Acceptance

Many of my Democrat friends seem concerned that tens of millions of people haven't graciously accepted Joe Biden's elevation to president. 

"Come on," they say earnestly, "you can't honestly believe that the election was a fraud. You guys have to get past this. You're sore losers."

I smile when that or a similar sentiment is voiced, secretly amazed at the lack of self-awareness evidenced by the comment. 

"So ..." I respond calmly but with evident sarcasm, "you're asking me to be like you guys in 2016? You guys immediately accepted Trump's win, didn't you? No one in your party suggested that the Russians stole the election, right? No Democrat advocated Trump's impeachment on inauguration day, did they? And gosh, dozens of Democrats in Congress didn't boycott Trump's inauguration because you guys were the epitome of 'gracious acceptance.' Your party didn't spend four long years trying to investigate and then impeach Trump and come up empty? And I'm confused ... wasn't it you guys who coined the idea of Resistance?

Silence. Then, "But ... but, this is different?"

Me, "How?"

Silence. Then, "You're just sore losers."

Newt Gingrich writes about his lack of gracious acceptance:

For more than four years, the entire establishment mobilized against the elected president of the United States as though they were an immune system trying to kill a virus. Now, they are telling us we are undermining democracy.

You have more than 74 million voters who supported President Trump despite everything — and given the election mess, the number could easily be significantly higher. The truth is tens of millions of Americans are deeply alienated and angry.

If Mr. Biden governs from the left — and he will almost certainly be forced to — that number will grow rapidly, and we will win a massive election in 2022.

Given this environment, I have no interest in legitimizing the father of a son who Chinese Communist Party members boast about buying. Nor do I have any interest in pretending that the current result is legitimate or honorable. It is simply the final stroke of a four-year establishment-media power grab. It has been perpetrated by people who have broken the law, cheated the country of information, and smeared those of us who believe in America over China, history over revisionism, and the liberal ideal of free expression over cancel culture.

I write this in genuine sorrow, because I think we are headed toward a serious, bitter struggle in America. This extraordinary, coordinated four-year power grab threatens the fabric of our country and the freedom of every American.

I hope Gingrich's last sentence is an overstatement, but I fear it isn't. 

As I have stated many times in this blog, Democrats tend to be masters of psychological projection. They accuse their opponents of the very things they themselves are doing. When they suggest that the reaction of many Americans to the past four years, culminating in the recent election, is a "threat to Democracy," they're projecting their own actions during the past four years onto those who will not buy into their narrative. 

Tuesday, December 22, 2020

Back to the Future

By withholding and/or de-emphasizing news that might reflect badly on Joe Biden and by extension their party of choice (the Democrats), the main stream media (along with virtually all of the major social media outlets) almost single-handedly (they got a little help with voting "irregularities" in select blue cities) succeeded in defeating the man they hate—Donald Trump. 

But even after their expected election result was achieved, they insist on continuing their narrative—in part, to justify their dishonest, unethical, and biased treatment of the man. Among the many outright lies the media perpetuates is the canard that Donald Trump's foreign policy was a disaster. Nothing, and I do mean nothing, could be further from the truth.

Caroline Glick discusses only one of many of Trump's foreign policy achievements:

For 72 years, U.S. presidents sought to achieve peace between Israel and the Arab world. For 72 years, they largely failed.

What for so long eluded presidents from Dwight D. Eisenhower to Barack Obama seems to have come effortlessly to President Donald Trump. In the space of just four months, together with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Trump has achieved four peace deals between Israel and Arab states—twice the number achieved by all his predecessors combined. Last Thursday, Trump announced Morocco has joined the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain and Sudan in the Abraham Accords normalization agreements with Israel. Three or four more Arab states are likely to join the circle of peace in Trump's final weeks in office.

Not only has Trump brought more peace to the Middle East, more comprehensively and faster than all of his predecessors combined, but he made it look easy. Israel's ties with its Abraham Accords partners are expanding massively by the day. Tourists from the UAE are streaming into the country. And with one in seven Israeli Jews descended from the Moroccan diaspora, the potential for business and cultural ties between Israel and Morocco is almost limitless.

Trump's sundry Middle East peace deals are humiliating for his predecessors. Not only did they fail where Trump has succeeded, but they insisted that his achievements were impossible.

Gosh, you'd think that maybe a little credit would be due. But no, the establishment elites would never, ever admit that they have been bested (not a little, but a lot) by a man they view as a vulgarian. Nobel peace prize? Not a chance. That was reserved for Barack Obama—a man whose feckless foreign policy team achieved absolutely nothing and arguably did far more harm than good. Oh well, life's not fair.

And now, Joe Biden has essentially reassembled Obama's foreign policy Team of 2s. Back to the future.


Now that Donald Trump will be gone in less than a month, you'd think that an honest media would spend some time assessing his presidency without the hatred and distain they evidenced since before his election in 2016. Nope. Not only won't they give the outgoing president credit for his many achievements, they continue to push their tired canards. The most recent, that Trump considered imposing martial law because he lost. 

Liz Peek, an unabashed Trump supporter, provides a summary of Trump's many tangible accomplishments during his tumultuous four years in office. She addresses an economy that was booming pre-Covid, the creation of half a million manufacturing jobs, the best wages and economic environment for blacks and Latinos in history, an historic rise in middle class wages, his overhaul of our suffocating regulatory regime, his legitimate attempt to control our southern border. She concludes with this:

Trump’s achievements in foreign affairs include the historic Abraham Accords, which forged first-ever diplomatic relations between Israel and a number of Arab states, ring-fencing Iranian belligerence in the Middle East.  

Trump also took a harder line against ISIS, freeing our troops to crush the caliphate, which they did in short order.  

Most important, President Trump confronted China, exposing and demanding an end to their unfair trade practices, massive theft of American know-how and persistent human rights abuses. In thrall to Big Business and Big Tech, previous presidents turned a blind eye to the rising threat from Beijing; Trump did not. No wonder China hoped for a Joe Biden presidency.   

As for accusations that Trump has been soft on Russia, the charge is as dishonest as the Russiagate hoax. Unlike Obama, Trump sent lethal weapons to Ukraine to help in their battle against Russia, closed consulates in Seattle and San Francisco, threw dozens of suspected Russian spies out of the country and imposed sanctions on Moscow.  

More important, Trump’s enthusiastic backing of our oil and gas industries helped drive oil prices down, wreaking havoc on Russia’s economy. If the climate zealots succeed in hobbling our energy businesses, it will be a great gift to both Russia and China.

The four anti-Trump constituencies (the Dems, the media (legacy and social), GOP NeverTrumpers, and the deep state) would have us believe that Trump's presidency was a failure, that he did nothing to improve the lives of average Americans and embarrassed us overseas. That's an outright lie, but S.O.P. for those who hate Trump. 

One can only hope that Joe Biden and his emerging Team of 2s can accomplish half of what Trump did, and do it in a way that provides more benefit than harm for our country. After all, Biden has a huge advantage—the media will not criticize him and will protect him from scandals and political attacks.

Based on early rhetoric and cabinet choices, I'm pretty sure the Biden administration (for as long as it lasts) will be very diverse, very woke, and very ineffective. But you never know.

Sunday, December 20, 2020

Alice in Covidland

As the thought-leader for Team Apocvalypse, Anthony Fauci, MD will have substantial influence among Joe Biden's followers. The trained hamsters in the main stream media treat him as Saint Fauci—a man who now tells us that even with an effective vaccine, insane catastrophist policies (a.k.a. "covidiocy") must remain in place throughout most of 2021.

Blue state governors, card carrying members of Team Apocalypse all, applaud Fauci's epistles, establishing policies that are as ineffective as they are unconstitutional. They cite Fauci when they tell us that they are "following the science" even as they implement policies (e.g., wearing masks outdoors or shuttering outdoor restaurants or closing schools) that have no basis whatsoever in science and virtually no support in any statistical analysis of the voluminous COVID-19 data collected over the past 10 months.

John Hinderacker comments on one of the the many Democrat governors who is representative of the cadre of "petty dictators" that appear to be doing everything possible to destroy lives and livelihoods under the guise of "keeping us safe" and "stopping the spread."

Every time I think that Minnesota’s Tim Walz must be the dumbest governor in America, I remind myself of two words: Gretchen Whitmer. Still, Walz is definitely a contender. Today he announced his most recent turning of the “dials” of his subjects’ lives. Gyms will reopen on a very limited basis, .... Bars and restaurants are to remain shut down indefinitely for indoor dining, but they can have outdoor dining on a very limited basis ....

I have four kids, all of whom will be in town for Christmas. Under Walz’s shutdown order, we can only host one of the four for Christmas dinner, indoors. And, of course, we have to stay six feet away from each other, so I suppose that means separate tables. If we are willing to have Christmas dinner outdoors, we can host two of our four children, again, apparently, at three separate tables. The other two will have to drive through McDonalds, I guess.

To understand how insane Governor Walz’s order is, you might need to live in Minnesota. The forecast for December 24, Christmas Eve, shows a high of 10 degrees and a low of 3 degrees. That is Fahrenheit, not Celsius. Christmas Day will be balmy, with a high of 22 and a low of 10, with a chance of snow.

The idea that anyone will have dinner on Christmas or Christmas Eve outdoors under these conditions is a sick joke–a sick joke that is perpetrated by the governor of the State of Minnesota, who glories in his ability to perpetrate such absurdities. Likewise, the idea that it is viable for restaurants to stay in business via outdoor service in Minnesota in December and January is ridiculous.

What we are seeing in Minnesota, and elsewhere around the country, is not a sane approach to public policy, but rather the manifestation of a proto-fascist urge to exercise total control over everyone’s life. In this regard, Tim Walz is certainly among the worst, but he is not alone. The sad reality is that millions of Americans have happily dispensed with just about every known freedom–you can’t leave your house without government permission!–in hopes of avoiding a respiratory virus that is dangerous to the elderly whose health is already severely compromised, but not noticed by most under the age of 70 who contract it. Home of the brave, indeed.

The very last sentence might be the most important. What on earth has happened to us? Team Apocalypse has frightened far too many Americans to the extent that they gladly accept this idiocy. Using death scoreboards and "case" counts, collective hysteria has been cultivated by a dishonest and corrupt media and abetted by a majority of Democrat politicians. As a consequence, those of us who reject their flailing attempts at "stopping the spread" (ask yourself: have they worked even in those places that have implemented draconian lockdowns [see Update-2]) are viewed by catastrophists as "uncaring" or "anti-science." It truly is an Alice in Covidland world, carefully cultivated by the Anthony Faucis of the establishment who never saw personal freedoms they didn't want to destroy (in the name of public health policy, of course).

At least some Americans have begun to push back. Hinderacker comments:

Happily, some are now fighting back. Here in Minnesota, quite a few restaurants and bars defied the “law”–i.e., what I think is an arbitrary, capricious and unconstitutional one-man edict by our governor–and opened their doors for business today. It remains to be seen how many will follow. The brave restaurant owners who led the way, like Larvita McFarquhar, are now being threatened with jail time. The proto-fascists will do anything to retain control over the most intimate details of your life.

The time has come to rebel. If a medium-strength respiratory virus can rob us of every known freedom, the republic is doomed. Let’s not let it happen.

Finally, I should add that neither I nor any member of my family has any intention of complying with Dim Tim Walz’s “emergency” order. Christmas dinner is our business, not his. In a totalitarian state, of course, everything is the government’s business. But we are not there yet. Not quite.

But petty dictators like Tim Walz and Gretchen Witmer, Andrew Cuomo and Gavin Newsom smile, because help is on the way. Upon taking office, Joe BIden will tell us that their "proto-fascist" policies should be kept in place for "just 100 days." Masking and lockdowns—that'll do the trick—even though they haven't done the trick for the past 10 months.

100 days is politically convenient because after those 100 days, tens of millions of Americans will have been vaccinated including just about everyone over 70 and in nursing homes (where up to half of all deaths occur). Spring will break, causing a decrease in "cases." The Dems' trained hamsters in the media will credit Joe's 100-day plan with saving us all. "Empathy" and "caring"—not actual science—that's what public health policy is all about.

Yep, Alice in Covidland.


My home state of FL has been among the more open and free states during the COVID era. People are out and about, schools are open to children who want to attend, beaches and parks are open and full, there are no outdoor mask mandates, stores are open, as are gyms and restaurants. The state government has made a commitment that another lockdown will not happen, giving businesses some degree of stability. Under the solid governance of GOP Gov. Ron DeSantis (much maligned by the media for refusing to lockdown the state), FL has not adopted Alice in Covidland policies that are anti-science and ruin the lives and livelihoods of its citizens.

To compare, New York, under the "proto-fascist" policies of Gov. Andrew Cuomo, has locked down much of the state, yet again, closed schools, outdoor restaurants, and gyms, and otherwise abridged the freedoms of it citizens. Yet, FL—which has a larger population than NY with significantly more senior citizens—has had significantly fewer deaths.

Christopher Bedford reports:

Thus far in Florida, approximately 20,000 people have died of COVID-19. In Texas, the number stands around 24,000, and in New York, about 35,000.

New York is the smallest of the three, with 19.54 million residents. Then comes Florida, with 21.67 million, before Texas, with 28.7 million residents.

COVID numbers are difficult to trust. Cases are often counted more than once as patients go in and out of the hospital, and some deaths are attributed to COVID that are barely related, if at all.

There’s a perverse incentive to write down “COVID” and get state and federal money, no doubt, but one thing rings clear through all the din: Despite larger populations, currently freer peoples, and a media narrative that screams otherwise, there are far, far fewer deaths in Texas and in Florida than in New York.

For months, American media consumers have been treated to news of Florida and Texas’s incoming death spirals. For months after, we were promised those death spirals were just around the bend. The funny thing with COVID, though, is unlike global warming doom science — always 3-12 years away and “too complex” to explain when it inevitably doesn’t happen — COVID doom predictions are checkable in just a few weeks. And COVID doom didn’t happen.

You'd think that after being consistently wrong over a the past 10 months, the media and its establishment experts (think: Dr. Fauci) would have the humility to just shut up. Even better, that they'd become introspective and try honesty when they talk about the threat and the risks associated with COVID-19. You'd be wrong, but then again, WRONG is the persistent state in Covidland.

An aside: 

Bedford writes:

In America today, left-wing politicians obsessed with control are crushing the lives and dreams of their citizens while in the same country just across state lines, young and old celebrate Christmas like we used to without any notable difference in risk and impact. How long can this continue before we all figure it out?

Many of us already have, but there are also many, maybe more, who have been propagandized and terrorized by Team Apocalypse. They have allowed "proto-fascist" politicians to crush their ability to think for themselves and take responsibility for their actions. Pathetic.


On Twitter, Matt Strauss, MD notes that the State of North Dakota had the courage to eschew lockdowns and mask mandates until November 13th, when rising "cases" and deaths caused the governor to succumb to political pressure and institute both. The graph that follows indicates the ND case count in blue.

Wow, immediately after following Team Apocalypse's recommendations, "cases" dropped like a rock. That's "following the science," right? Masks and lockdowns work!!!

Uh ... wait. The graph in red represents the results for the State of South Dakota where no mask mandates or lockdowns were ever instituted. The states of ND and SD are geographically proximate, have similar climates, the same population demographics and size. The results are near-identical.

Hmmm. Looks like the virus is gonna virus, regardless of the level of covidiocy brought to bear by politicians and their Team Apocalypse cheerleaders.


Because Covidiocy reigns in Covidland, the trained hamsters in the mainstream media, who invariably do the bidding of their Democrat masters, never ask why it is that draconian lockdowns and ridiculous mask mandates have virtually no effect on COVID-19 cases or deaths (e.g., see Update-2). 

Ground zero for Covidiocy (along with lots of other leftist insanity) is CA. CA's Governor, Gavin Newsom, has gone beyond being a petty dictator and has now moved into the big leagues.

John Miltimore writes:

Newsom’s order closing outdoor playgrounds—a response many see as senseless and ineffective, which prompted the governor to rescind it—is just one example of the hardline approach California public officials have taken in their attempt to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus.

Other restrictions include a 10 p.m. curfew, bans on outdoor dining and religious gatherings, as well as school closures. Surveys in recent months have shown California’s restrictions are some of the strictest in the US.

Sadly, but perhaps predictably, the regulations do not appear to be working. State data show California is smashing its previous highs in both COVID-19 cases and deaths.

“California broke its statewide records for both coronavirus cases reported and deaths reported in a single day on Wednesday,” The Hill reports. “The state reported 51,724 COVID-19 cases on Wednesday, breaking the previous record of 42,088 cases, which was just set on Monday, according to a Los Angeles Times tally.”

This is a classic 'emperor's new clothes' situation. You'd think some junior reporter might stand up at a Newsom news conference and say, 

"This isn't working? At all. Why are you doing this when it isn't working? At all. Why are you hurting people and forcing them into poverty? Why are you ruining businesses? How can you justify any of this when it isn't working? At all."

Won't happen. Because ... Alice in Covidland.


The house propaganda sheet for Team Apocalypse is The New York Times. This morning, some  NYT staffer was too stupid or insufficiently woke to notice the contradiction in this headline (advertised in their Twitter feed):

Recognizing that some reader might begin asking actual questions, the NYT quickly changed the headline to:

As California I.C.U.s fill up, the dead are counted by the hour.

Perfect! Sufficiently misleading and terrorizing—all in one. Covidiocy propaganda at its best.

Friday, December 18, 2020

What Do They Want?

For four long years, leftists, their progressive cousins, and their political party, the Democrats, have been consumed with Trump Derangement Syndrome. From the day Trump was elected, they mobilized the four constituencies—their media (meaning almost all media and social media outlets run by big tech), the Democratic party itself, #NeverTrump Republicans, and thousands of government employees who comprise the deep state—to "resist" Donald Trump. In order to make themselves feel justified in their endeavor, they demonized Trump, calling him a "white supremacist," the reincarnation of "Hitler, a "fascist," a "racist." They used the entire woke outrage vocabulary to convince the public that orange man baaad.

They enlisted the FBI to initiate a soft coup, in an attempt to unseat Trump. They initiated a 2-year special counsel investigation that turned up nothing. They even impeached the man for a phone call. But they failed ... until they used COVID hysteria, fostered by a dishonest and corrupt media that understood it could be used as a political weapon. They used the same media to suppress any negative stories that might impact Trump's opponent during the campaign (think: the growing Biden scandal) and then, to ensure election victory, did some questionable things in Democratically controlled cities in battleground states. 

Trump lost. He'll be gone in less than 5 weeks. 

But the four constituencies didn't stop there. They happily accused anyone and everyone who supported Trump's policies, even if they didn't like his narcissistic, combative and often bombastic style, of being just as bad as their cartoon image of Trump. His 70-odd million supporters were true "deplorables," beneath contempt. After all, they rejected the Woke catechism, they still believed in merit and personal responsibility, they pushed back when petty tyrants told them to hide in their houses, they didn't believe that the United States is "systemically racist," they wanted big government to get out of their way and let them live their lives. 

The Woke were outraged that the deplorables pushed back. And because the woke couldn't win the argument, they resorted to name calling every chance they got. I suppose the feeling of superiority it gave them just couldn't be resisted.

But all of this has a price, and Glen Reynolds discusses it in an important op-ed in the NY Post:

Democrats won the election, but they don’t seem very happy about it. And with reason: The election failed in its main purpose, which was to shut down the Deplorables.

The Deplorables, in Hillary Clinton’s infamous term, are working- and middle-class people who haven’t bought into the progressive agenda. They’re people who don’t see the rise of the tech oligarchy as a plus, who don’t think “woke” politics make sense, who have jobs that produce tangible outputs. They’re nearly half the country.

This election was supposed to demoralize them, crushing President Trump and his supporters in a double-digit landslide that would give the Democrats solid control of the White House and Congress — and, with a little judicious court-packing, of the judicial branch, too. The Deplorables would be made to realize that they aren’t in charge, that if they want to ride, they’ll have to (in Barack Obama’s famous words) ride in the back.

Only it didn’t work out that way. The big congressional victories turned into lost House seats for the Democrats. And the presidential election was hardly a crushing victory. For an election to really take, the losers have to admit that they’ve been beaten. And to admit that they’ve been beaten, they have to think they actually lost fair and square. Not many Trump supporters think that.

Leaving aside charges of voter fraud and vote-rigging, there is the undisputable fact that Big Media and Big Tech put not just a thumb, but both hands, on the scales to influence the result.

As much as possible, the media ignored the Hunter Biden scandal and Joe Biden’s role in it, first reported in this paper. When blue-check reporters did pay attention, they claimed, falsely and without evidence, that the reports were “Russian disinformation.”

Big Tech shut down the accounts of people who shared the story, and Twitter even blocked sharing the link via direct messages.

The machinations worked, but at a high price: According to a McLaughlin poll, enough Joe Biden voters say they would have changed their votes had they known of the Hunter Biden scandal that they would have produced solid Trump win. The impression of tech-media-corporate underhandedness will long endure.

So the Deplorables are still around, and they’re still angry. And as long as they’re still around, and still angry, the Democrats can’t actually get what they want.

The question that each of us must ask is: "Exactly what does the new Democratic party want?" It's the same question that Cubans should have asked about Fidel Castro's legions in the 1950s or Venezuelans should have asked about Hugo Chavez's cadres in the late 1990s. It's a question that will be answered over the coming few years, and I suspect an awful lot of Americans won't like the answer one little bit.

Thursday, December 17, 2020


I have on a number of occasions noted that Joe Biden exhibits all of the signs of early stage cognitive impairment. I know ... because I observed early-, mid-, and late-stage Alzheimer's disease with my Dad. I feel terrible for Joe and his family, I really do, but that doesn't forgive the Democratic party for running a candidate who even last year, exhibited signs of early cognitive impairment, or his family who didn't discourage him from running. 

Arthur Chrenkoff has the courage to discuss what few in the mainstream media are willing to voice:

Joe Biden is not meant to govern. If he manages, and whatever he manages, that’s all well and good, and a bonus but that is not his purpose. His mission was to win the election. This he did, regardless of whether you think he did it fairly, cleanly and legally or not.

Biden was nominated because the Democrat establishment thought he was the only one of the original field of two dozen or so who had a chance of winning against Donald Trump. In that the DNC was correct. All the others vying to take on Orange Man Bad were either too inexperienced and unknown or too far to the left of the party .... Biden was not great but he was the best available; well past his “best by” date – though clearly not “use by” – but still able to project the avuncular image of the slightly embarrassing and yet somewhat endearing drunk Irish uncle. An experienced (47 years in Washington) centrist (by Democrat standards), he could appeal to the independents and the swinging voters tired of Trump’s theatrics as a honest, straight-talking, dignified, well-meaning and non-threatening alternative ...

The mission is now accomplished and Joe is not strictly speaking necessary any more, though it would be a tad unseemly to remove him too soon ...

It's interesting that at long last the significant and well-documented scandal surrounding the Biden family, purposely hidden by the mainstream media during the campaign, has now come to light. It's almost as if the Democrats' trained hamsters in the media are preparing the battle space for the ultimate dismissal of Biden for ... well, it could be due to the scandal (selling government influence for monetary reward is no small thing) or via some "illness" associated with, but not explicitly connected to, Joe's cognitive issues. There are calls for a special counsel, and unlike the Dems' rush to appoint one in 2016, there is plenty of hard evidence and justification for one now.

Chrenkoff comments further:

The battlespace preparation has already begun, with two independent lines of probing attack launched through the mainstream media: the question of age and infirmity, and the controversy over potential family corruption. On one level, these can be seen as completely innocent: Trump has been defeated – the media having faithfully played its part – so certain issues that were untouchable during the election campaign can now be safely aired. That, after all, is the media’s role in our political system, shining the light and holding those in power accountable. No one can accuse them of not doing their job – finally, now that it won’t help Trump. But on another level, the two lines of attack also serve to soften up public opinion, start constructing the necessary narrative, and prepare the country for the inevitable change of guard at the top, much sooner rather than later, as would normally be expected.

The first "line of attack" focuses on cognitive decline. The Dems trained hamsters in the media have decided that cognitive decline among senior (moderate) Democrats can now be discussed. Hence, a surprisingly blunt piece in the leftist New Yorker that outlines Senator Diane Feinstein's (D-CA) struggles with the affliction. It won't be long before whisper's about Joe's cognitive struggles appear in other left-wing media outlets.

The second line of attack may very well grow out of the pay-for-play Biden scandal. It's not that the trained hamsters will investigate Biden with vigor, and there will be no bombshells coming from them, but the slow grind of corruption implications may very well lead people to look for any excuse to remove the "distraction" causes by Hunter Biden's greed and stupidity (and Joe's obvious, albeit indirect, complicity in it all). Chrenkoff addresses these salient questions:

Any deep look into the affairs of the Biden family is going to bring out uncomfortable questions about the way money, political power and foreign influence intersect at the very top: was Joe Biden an active participant? And even if he wasn’t and hasn’t personally benefitted in any way from the wheelings and dealings of his son (and his brother), is it not something that he should have been aware of and put a stop to in order to protect his and his family’s good name and integrity?

That alone is enough to topple Joe, particularly if the media is onboard—and they're certainly  exhibiting the appropriate early signs. 

Enter Kamal Harris. The Dems are obsessed with racial and gender politics, so who better than a Kamala to take over for Biden. Even better, Harris is an opportunist, recognizing that the power shift in the new Democratic party is hard left, so she will govern in that direction. Her gender and racial background will act as a magical force field that will allow social justice warriors to claim that any criticism of her is "racist and misogynist," thereby causing at least some critics to tread lightly.

I am on-the-record among friends as saying that the 'over-under' for Biden's stay in the White House is one year, and I'm taking the 'under.'  Chrenkoff agrees, writing:

All in all, I will be surprised if Joe Biden lasts as president past the first anniversary of his inauguration. He doesn’t need to. Having saved the Republic from a fascist dictatorship and a continuing international embarrassment, he can retire in peace to spend his last few months or years surrounded by his loving family, the Trojan Horse put out to pasture. In the wings, a new generation of leaders stands ready to pick up the mantle of power and responsibility.

Unlike Chrenkoff, I would argue that Biden has "saved" us from a continuation of significant domestic and international achievements, and opened the door for a continuation of the feckless leadership that characterized the Obama era. But that remains to be seen. 

Regardless of how it all works out, I suspect that Joe won't be in the oval office to witness it much past January, 2022.

Tuesday, December 15, 2020

Special Counsel—The Sequel

I'm sure that every leader of the Democratic Party along with the vast majority of all Democrats, would heartily endorse the appointment of Special Counsel to investigate the Biden family—Hunter Biden, Joe Biden and his brother, Jim. After all, It was the Democrats who argued that the only way to get to the bottom of the "Russia collusion" scandal was to name a Special Counsel who conducted two-year investigation that roiled Donald Trump's presidency and consuming the media. No matter that there was little if any evidence of collusion, the Dems insisted that an investigation was not only warranted, it was a moral imperative. 

Even if the Bidens' own emails, banking transactions, and business activities do NOT indicate an active attempt to sell access and influence at the highest levels of government, the simple fact that there are substantive allegations should be enough, right? BTW, if the Trump allegations would rate a 2 on a seriousness scale of 1 to 10, the Biden allegations should rate at least an 8. Unlike Trump, there actually is a paper trail, money from foreign powers did, in fact, change hands, and an actual named witness to the process has come forward, implicating not only the Biden family but indicating that Joe Biden himself knew all about it.

Michael Goodwin writes:

Now that the election is over and it is safe for the media to cover the Hunter Biden scandal they ignored when The [NY] Post broke the story in October, things in Washington are getting back to normal. FBI and Justice Department officials are once again leaking like sieves to their favorite reporters.

The New York Times knew before the election that Joe Biden was the “big guy” in line for a secret 10 percent stake in a deal with a Chinese energy conglomerate, but the paper withheld the information from readers. Yet now that Hunter Biden admits he’s under a criminal tax probe, the Gray Lady begins to stir.

In a Friday piece about the perils of the probe for Hunter’s father, the Times writes that “the inquiry originally focused on possible money laundering but did not gather enough evidence for a prosecution, according to people close to the case.”

Yada yada yada, the real question is, what else did the Times know and when did it know it? And why did it keep silent before Election Day?

Try to imagine Donald Trump and his family getting the same deference.

The feds are investigating Hunter B. and have been for over a year. The question is—what have they learned about Joe B.'s involvement. Goodwin continues:

Someone wrote that, by standing alone against the mob, The [NY] Post proved itself the nation’s indispensable newspaper. That high praise is borne out by the fact that the October reports were on the money — and there were no anonymous sources. The paper identified Rudy Giuliani as the source of the contents of the laptop Hunter left at a Delaware repair shop and failed to retrieve, and the repair-shop owner confirmed it.

To this day, neither Hunter nor Joe Biden has disputed any of the e-mails, messages and lurid pictures found on the device.

Consider this, too: The Post’s reports, including interviews with Tony Bobulinski, a former partner to Hunter and Jim Biden, presented more solid evidence about dirty dealings by the Biden family than anyone found on Trump and his family. This is true despite special counsel Robert Mueller’s two-year probe into Russia, Russia, Russia and the nonstop House impeachment investigations.

The confederacy against Trump gives rise to another reality: The only way to protect the probe into the Biden family money-grubbing is through the appointment of a special counsel. The need for protection was the logic behind the Mueller appointment, and it applies now in spades ...

In China, our No. 1 global adversary, Hunter made millions upon millions of dollars in deals with firms tied to the ruling Communist Party. And recall that Joe and his brother Jim were also involved in the 2017 planned deal with the energy conglomerate, according to Bobulinski, who provided his information to the public and the FBI.

The potential implications for America’s national security are enormous. The Trump administration has forcefully confronted China on numerous fronts, including trade deals, repression in Hong Kong and among the Uighurs and its military expansion in the South China Sea. As a result, Joe Biden will be under pressure from President Xi Jinping to take a softer approach.

If he does, will that show he is bought and paid for? And what else does China know about the Bidens that Americans don’t?

Interesting question. Given their past pre-disposition for a special counsel, I have no doubt that the Democrats will agree that one is warranted to look into the Biden matter. After all, it only seems fair that the "rules" the Dems created for Trump apply to Biden as well. 

Monday, December 14, 2020

Doctor Jill

Sometimes you just gotta laugh. The first time I heard Joe Biden's wife referred to as DOCTOR Jill Biden, I asked innocently, "Is she a physician?" When  told she was not, but instead, received a Ed.D. in education from the University of Delaware, I didn't say a word. I just smiled. 

It seems that the Democrats' trained hamsters in the media never (and I do mean, never) refer to Biden's wife without the honorific. In fact, when reading their teleprompters, it seems that they give a slight emphasis to the word "doctor" as if that somehow gives not only Jill, but Joe, more gravitas.

Joseph Epstein caused a bit of a hubbub when he wrote the following the in The Wall Street Journal:

Madame First Lady—Mrs. Biden—Jill—kiddo: a bit of advice on what may seem like a small but I think is a not unimportant matter. Any chance you might drop the “Dr.” before your name? “Dr. Jill Biden ” sounds and feels fraudulent, not to say a touch comic. Your degree is, I believe, an Ed.D., a doctor of education, earned at the University of Delaware through a dissertation with the unpromising title “Student Retention at the Community College Level: Meeting Students’ Needs.” A wise man once said that no one should call himself “Dr.” unless he has delivered a child. Think about it, Dr. Jill, and forthwith drop the doc.

Hoo, boy, the feminists went wild, suggesting that this takedown was anti-woman and unfair. Nah, it was probably appropriate, sticking a pin in the balloon of a person who has an inflated image of her academic credentials. Like all good politicians and their wives, Jill Biden has written two books—about herself and her family. That's perfectly okay, but a quick search of Google Scholar indicates no substantive recent research papers (in fact, none that I could find at all), no academic textbooks, and no long and distinguished full-time professorial career. When the honorific, Doctor, is attached to someone's name, it's normally because they have published widely and are recognized for important research and teaching. 

Throughout my long career as a professor, a consultant, and a speaker, I have encountered many colleagues, both women and men, who insisted on being addressed using the honorific, Doctor (and many who did not). That's okay, I suppose. Getting a Ph.D. is hard work (and I'll assume getting an Ed.D. is also hard work), and the holder should be proud of the achievement. The abject terror of defending your dissertation in front of an assembled faculty that fires questions at you nonstop is a right of passage for a 20- or 30-something Ph.D. student. I know ... I went through it.

But Dr. Jill got her Ed.D. at 55, long after her hubby was a fixture in national politics. I have to wonder whether the faculty at Delaware asked the same kind of softball questions of Dr. Jill during her dissertation defense as the media now asks on the rare occasions when her husband deigns to appear in front of them. I suppose we'll never know.

It's worth noting that Joseph Epstein has been "cancelled" by Northwestern, where he was an Adjunct Professor. He committed the cardinal sin of questioning whether Jill Biden's insistence (her Twitter handle is, after all, @Dr.Biden) on her honorific is a sign of arrogance or insecurity. I suspect it's a little of both.

UPDATE (12-15-2020):

It seems that progressives just won't let the Doctor Jill kerfuffle die (the criticism must have struck a nerve), so let me add an additional comment.

A reader at Ann Althouse's blog writes:

"When I first started teaching at Stanford, someone remarked to me that he had never met a physicist who used 'Dr.,' and never met a Ph.D. [or Ed.D.] from the Education school who did not. This has held true in my experience for decades now." 

That made me smile because it's been my experience as well. In engineering (the discipline from which my Ph.D. was awarded) students do refer to professors by that honorific or by "Doctor" in the university setting. But in the real world—colleagues, the media, and acquaintances—not so much. Unless the person who has the degree insists on it. I suspect that Dr. Jill does just that.