Category Archives: Democrat Party

COVID-19 Vaccine Creator: ‘We Can’t Vaccinate the Planet Every 6 Months’

The Epoch Time,  By Jack Phillips,   January 4, 2022

The creator of one of the most used COVID-19 vaccines in the world acknowledged Tuesday that it is “not sustainable” to continuously provide booster doses to people twice per year.

Speaking to The Telegraph in an interview on Tuesday, Andrew Pollard, one of the creators of the Oxford AstraZeneca COVID-19 shot, remarked, “We can’t vaccinate the planet every six months.”

Policymakers should instead try to “target the vulnerable” moving forward rather than providing doses to anyone aged 12 and older, said Pollard, who is also in charge of the UK’s Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunization. More data should be gathered on “whether, when, and how often those who are vulnerable will need additional doses,” he continued.

It comes as some countries, including Israel, are starting or are considering the rollout of a fourth vaccine dose. On Monday, Israeli officials started offering the dose to all medical workers and individuals aged 60 and older.

In Israel, booster doses are connected to individuals’ COVID-19 vaccine passports, known as “green passes,” that are used to enter certain businesses. Authorities announced last year that green passes would expire if the person doesn’t receive a booster within six months of getting their second initial vaccine dose.

German Health Minister Karl Lauterbach in late December told public broadcaster ZDF that Germans “will need a fourth vaccination” for COVID-19 in the coming months, while authorities in the Netherlands remarked last week that they have purchased enough vaccine doses to provide three extra boosters through 2023.

“At some point, society has to open up. When we do open, there will be a period with a bump in infections, which is why winter is probably not the best time,” Pollard said in the Tuesday interview. “But that’s a decision for the policymakers, not the scientists. Our approach has to switch, to rely on the vaccines and the boosters. The greatest risk is still the unvaccinated.”

The UK, he added, should not blindly follow the booster policies that were implemented or are being currently proposed in Germany in Israel.

Since the heavily mutated variant was first detected in November, World Health Organization data shows it has spread quickly and emerged in at least 128 countries, presenting dilemmas for many nations and people seeking to reboot their economies and lives after nearly two years of COVID-related disruptions.

But more evidence is emerging that the Omicron variant is affecting the upper respiratory tract, causing milder symptoms than previous variants and resulting in a “decoupling” in some places between soaring case numbers and low death rates, a WHO official said Tuesday.

Reuters contributed to this report

https://www.theepochtimes.com/mkt_morningbrief/covid-19-vaccine-creator-we-cant-vaccinate-the-planet-every-six-months_4190735.html?utm_source=Morningbrief&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=mb-2022-01-05&mktids=5d404b681323fd86de8b6863b8c21aca&est=E/7yVdrYq86hnHkxsuPCxts+tUqOPVfJbVwp2cBCSloTzgq9uaKAICbKmi8MwA==

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Gov. Kathy Hochul Will Tell You if You’re ‘Essential’ – WSJ

Power grab. It keeps happening. How long will the general population put up with this? mrossol

Gov. Kathy Hochul announced on Christmas Eve that people whose jobs New York state deems unimportant must stay home and quarantine for 10 days if they test positive for Covid-19. Others are free to return to work five days earlier. The state Health Department described its guidance as allowing for a shortened quarantine for “Healthcare Workers and Other Critical Workforce.” But the meaning is the same: People will be confined to their homes not based solely on their risk of contagion but also on the government’s perception of their social or economic value.

 

Throughout the pandemic, politicians have exhorted the public to “follow the science.” Courts have generally deferred to public-health decrees that greatly restrict individual liberty—on the assumption that they are grounded in epidemiological considerations. Such factors include the disease’s incubation period, its severity and the immunity of the exposed person. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention this week said that quarantine beyond five days is unnecessary for any vaccinated person.

New York’s policy makes confinement in quarantine turn substantially on economic or political considerations. That isn’t science; it’s central planning.

If a shorter period is medically acceptable, it should be the default, not a government-bestowed privilege. Public-health agencies have no expertise in making determinations about what makes the economy tick. To the extent quarantine decisions are demonstrably influenced by nonscientific factors, the protective bubble that constitutional doctrine has placed around them should be weaker.

The jobs New York deems “critical” go far beyond those necessary to sustain human life. Bartenders, movers and law professors may return to work after five days under New York’s new guidance. People providing services to “government owned or leased buildings” are essential—but those doing the same for private buildings aren’t.

Many of the jobs with a shorter quarantine period—including schoolteachers—are those where increased transmission could be thought to be a particular concern. The guidance also makes healthcare workers eligible for the light quarantine out of concern for staffing shortages, which have been exacerbated by vaccine mandates.

The New York quarantine guidance is another step toward general governmental authority to determine who gets to work and who doesn’t. The process began during the lockdown phases of the pandemic, when states across the country issued lists of exempted “essential” jobs—with no intelligible principle determining what made something essential. (New York had such exemptions from its quarantine policy for interstate travelers, which Gov. Andrew Cuomo lifted in April 2021.) Gossip columnists were “essential” in many states. So were marijuana dispensaries, illegal under federal law.

People disagree passionately on policies such as mask and vaccine mandates. But one neutral way to ensure that policy makers don’t abuse the power, and limit coercive measures to the minimum, is to apply them across the board. In a free society, everyone is equally essential.

Mr. Kontorovich is a professor at George Mason University Scalia Law School.

https://www.wsj.com/articles/gov-kathy-hochul-new-york-essential-covid-quarantine-teacher-healthcare-frontline-omicron-11640875496?mod=opinion_lead_pos7

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The Conformity Crackup of 2021

From Covid lockdowns to crime and cops, the political-media consensus was wrong

The year 2021 that ends this week wasn’t the return to normalcy that President Biden promised, but it was invaluable in one respect. This was the year when the conformity that characterizes American politics and media was exposed for its mistakes as never before.

By conformity we mean the progressive political and media consensus that forms quickly around an issue and then reinforces itself no matter the competing arguments or new information. This isn’t a conspiracy in any formal sense; there are no organized calls or Zoom meetings.

This is about a shared set of political values and preferences that leads people to reach the same conclusions about an event. The reporters and commentators of the major progressive media—the Washington Post, Bloomberg, the Financial Times, the New York Times, the Atlantic, and more—all then reinforce what they now like to call the “narrative” of a story.

Politicians and the press feed the narrative with leaks and the stories they pursue—or, as important, what they don’t pursue. Disagreement is rare to nonexistent because the cost can be ostracism or lost careers.

***

Only when it is exposed over time as false does the conformity break, and typically only if there are negative political consequences for Democrats. The saving grace is that sometimes reality is impossible to ignore, and 2021 was the year this happened on some of the biggest events of our time. It’s worth recounting a few examples to see how the dominant consensus was wrong about so much for so long.

The Wuhan Virology Lab origin theory of Covid-19. In the early days of the pandemic, even raising this as a possibility was taboo. Sen. Cotton was vilified for doing so. The Lancet, a supposedly open-minded scientific journal, published a letter in February 2020 “to strongly condemn conspiracy theories suggesting that COVID-19 does not have a natural origin.”

This year we learned that the Lancet letter was part of a coordinated effort to quash the lab theory. We learned about the conflicts of interest of Anthony Fauci and others who provided funding for the Wuhan lab. Eventually even the press noticed that China had blocked an honest inquiry, and that no evidence for a natural origin has emerged.

Lockdowns stop Covid-19. There was no fiercer consensus in the early days of the virus than the belief that locking down the economy to stop the virus was an unadulterated social good. We felt the consensus wrath when we raised doubts, in an editorial on March 20, 2020, about the harm that lockdowns would do to the economy and public health.

Two years later we now know that lockdowns at most delay the virus spread. The damage in lost education for children, lost livelihoods for workers and employers, and damage to mental health is obvious for all to see. Even Randi Weingarten, the teachers union chief who did so much to keep schools closed, now claims she wanted to keep them open all along.

The supply side of the economy doesn’t matter. The Keynesian consensus, which dominates the U.S. and European media, has long held that the demand for goods and services drives the economy. The ability or incentive to supply those goods is largely ignored or dismissed. Spurring demand was the theory behind the trillions of dollars in spending by Congress and easy money from the Federal Reserve.

All that money did spur demand. But the Keynesians ignored the disincentives to increase supply from paying people not to work and restricting work with lockdowns and mandates. The result was the surging inflation that caught nearly all of them by surprise. Their demand-side models never saw it coming.

The Steele dossier and Russia collusion narrative. In 2019 the Mueller report exposed the lack of evidence for the claims that Donald Trump and the Kremlin were in cahoots. This year the indictments by special counsel John Durham have revealed how Democrats and the press worked together to promote the dossier that was based on disinformation.

Yet for four years nearly everyone in the dominant media bought the collusion narrative. One or two of the gullible have apologized, but most want everyone to forget what they wrote or said at the time.

Vilifying police won’t affect crime. The fast-congealing consensus after George Floyd’s murder was that most police were racist, as was most of American society, and violent protests against this were justified—even admirable. Woe to anyone who pointed out that the victims of these riots and crime were mostly poor and minority communities.

Police funding was cut and bail laws eased in many cities. Eighteen months later we see the result in rising crime rates and a soaring murder count. A political backlash now has even many Democrats claiming they really do want more funding for police.

***

We could go on—who can forget the knee-jerk solidarity with fabulist Jussie Smollett? But you get the idea. The reason so many Americans don’t trust the media is because they’ve learned from hard experience that the consensus they are told is unassailable truth will often turn out to be false.

https://www.wsj.com/articles/media-conformity-wuhan-covid-russia-crime-11640805471?mod=hp_opin_pos_1

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Elon Musk, Person of the Year, Radicalized by Lockdowns

Hit at least one nail squarely on the head, possibly more nails, and hit them more than once! mrossol

Elon Musk, Person of the Year, Radicalized by Lockdowns

By Jeffrey A. Tucker   December 14, 2021   Economics, Philosophy   7 minute read SHARE | PRINT | EMAILFacebookTwitterRedditLinkedInFlipboardTelegramPrintEmailShare

It’s a good call for Time Magazine: it made Elon Musk the person of the year. It’s actually even a remarkable call, and a great omen. Musk is arguably the most prominent opponent of lockdowns and vaccine mandates in the US. In his official interview, he refused to take back his last-year denunciation of stay-at-home orders as “fascist.” 

He stepped it up even further concerning vaccine mandates. “I am against forcing people to be vaccinated, not something we should do in America.” Yes, the unvaccinated are “taking a risk, but people do risky things all the time. I believe we’ve got to watch out for the erosion of freedom in America.”

True indeed. For some reason, people have a hard time understanding how someone could be for the right to accept the vaccine but also be against imposing it by force. And yet that position is clearly the most reasonable one, the one consistent with freedom, and good public health. 

Something has dramatically changed in the heart and mind of Musk over the several years. At this point, no one can seem to be able to control his mouth. And despite his ambiguous politics of the past, he is increasingly revealing himself to be what he was raised to be: a brilliant and irascible anarchist. 

Only a few weeks ago, he told the Wall Street Journal that the whole of the Democrats’ and Biden’s $1.9 trillion spending bill on infrastructure should be scrapped. All of it. There is nothing worth anything in it. 

“Honestly, I would just can this whole bill.” Further, he said that he doesn’t want any support for his electric charging stations. He pointed out that gas stations don’t need federal subsidies. He is fully confident that Tesla can continue to grow and thrive without any federal support. 

He is certainly right about that. And there is nothing surprising in his conclusion. 

Just about everyone knows that these huge bills are pork for the rich. They balloon the debt to reward political power and the friends of political power. Nothing more. We know that. The debt will find a buyers’ market mostly thanks to the Fed, which in turn manipulates money and drives up inflation. 

What’s surprising is that someone so rich, so influential, so decisive to our present economic lives, would actually say openly what everyone knows. It’s highly unusual, especially these days. Musk is now America’s most honest plutocrat. He is beyond being controlled or contrite at this point. In that way he is a very dangerous man, in the best possible way we can use that term. He had better watch his back. 

In the same context, he presented the traditional view of the state that emerged out of the enlightenment and which, in many ways, served as a foundational principle of the American revolution: “The government is simply the biggest corporation, with a monopoly on violence and where you have no recourse.”

That’s it in a nutshell, the essential insight of traditional liberalism, the one that gave us limits on the state that unleashed human creativity for hundreds of years and built what we call civilization. 

Today, the White House spokesman routinely says that no edicts against rights and freedom are “off the table.” Anything is possible. Anything can happen. They will decide.  No one says a word; the craven press believes this is just normal. It’s not. It’s dangerous. Musk’s warning about government is the antidote. 

There were a number of turning points for Musk personally. A few years back, he got fed up with the dogmatic attacks on crypto and decided to defend it. Then he trolled harder: he promoted Dogecoin and gave that market a lift. Then he said he would accept Bitcoin in selling his cars, before reversing that decision later. Still, he stepped out front of the opinion cartel and shattered the prevailing view that Bitcoin is something all of corporate America should avoid. 

The last two years have been transformative for him. He is a businessman above all else. When the government told him that he had to close his factories for a virus, he balked. He began to look at the data (he is trained in economics and statistics). He saw that the infection fatality rate was not highly unusual for this type of virus, and he was clearly aware of the harms that would come from lockdowns to his company, the country, and the world economy.

On May 11, 2020, he tweeted: “Tesla is restarting production today against Alameda County rules, I will be on the line with everyone else. If anyone is arrested, I ask that it only be me.” By the end of the year, he moved Tesla’s headquarters from oppressive California to emancipate Texas. Good on him. Remarkable really. 

Two years earlier, his dust up with the SEC made a mockery of the agency. He believes that he should have free speech so he tweeted what he wanted to tweet. The SEC reminded him that this is not a free country and that he cannot do that. He faced their investigatory tribunal, and then resigned briefly as CEO so that he could say what he wanted to say. In the end, he outsmarted them all. 

What’s happened to Elon is what has happened to millions of other people. He began to realize that the governing elites in this country are incredibly inept and unwilling to take responsibility for their actions. He noted the completely undemocratic methods and the unscientific rationale that were deployed to bring about lockdowns. For that reason, he has been smeared and put down as a promoter of misinformation. Anyone who has paid attention for the last two years knows exactly what that means: he is telling truths he is not supposed to tell. 

Let’s address his relationship with China, which in many respects pioneered the lockdowns he despises. He has said that despite his good relations in China, he disagrees with many policies of the government, just as he disagrees with policies in the US. This opinion gets him in trouble with both Democrats and Republicans. But we do well to pay attention. 

Musk is aware of a truth not often faced in the West: China is destined to be the world’s largest economy and easily so. The lockdowns of 2020 and 2021 meant that the West gave up any chance of stopping this trajectory. China gave us a gun and we shot ourselves in the foot. Beijing must still be laughing. Elon watched this all unfold and it was this that caused him to lose all respect in the governing leadership in the US. 

So yes, he will continue to maintain close ties to China. The US attempt somehow to decouple US and China in technology and trade was reckless, even delusional. It led to the chip shortage and supply chain breakages, and incentivized the creation of a robust trade pact that China dominates entirely, while excluding the US. Sorry to say, but this was Trump’s doing and it was a disaster, not so much for China, but for the US.

As regards all of these issues – trade, chips, crypto, spending, infrastructure, securities regulation – the single most dangerous thing that Elon has said is that the top goal of the US government now should be to get out of the way. Do nothing. That’s the best path. Laissez-faire. Leave us alone. 

This thought caused the transportation secretary to explode in a rage.

“These are things that don’t happen on their own,” said Pete Buttigieg said in response. “They require policy attention, and that’s part of our focus both in the charging network that is supported out of the infrastructure bill that the president signed, and the tax credits that will make these vehicles more affordable, that are proposed in Build Back Better.”

Musk will have none of it. “The government is simply the biggest corporation, with the monopoly on violence.” 

The person interviewing him interrupted: “Can you explain that last part?”

Apparently this is going to take a lot of explaining in the years ahead. 

For all the controversy, the hypocrisy, and the mixed messaging over the years, Elon Musk has turned into a true American, a resistor, a revolutionary. His influence in business and philosophical outlook offers a real path forward. He deserves every congratulations for refusing to go along with ruling-class ideology and instead demand that most essential thing, the freedom to trade, speak, run a business, and innovate without government interference. 

That he has been named Person of the Year portends more than Time Magazine knows. There is a new spirit of resistance alive in the land, and Musk embodies it as well or better than anyone else in his position. In that case, there are many people and institutions in this country and around the world that should be very worried. 

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I'm serious… usually. (Martin Rossol)