Category Archives: Mandates

Congress and the Pandemic Response: An Interview with Thomas Massie

Congress and the Pandemic Response: An Interview with Thomas Massie

This is long, but worth the read. Hard to believe the unconstitutional behavior of our federal government. mrossol

May 16, 2022

Congressman Thomas Massie of Kentucky is the rare example of a statesman in the US who saw the pandemic and response with scientific clarity from the very beginning. He was never shy about sharing his views both in speeches and on social media, even when it contradicted the priorities of his own political party.

He spoke out that “two weeks to flatten the curve” made absolutely no sense. He was also personally responsible for forcing a quorum back to Washington, D.C., only one week into lockdowns, thus earning wild attacks from all sides.

He has been consistent from the beginning to end, sticking to good science and principle but always with charm and intelligence. As a result, he is hugely popular within his district, simply because voters know that he will always tell the truth as he sees it. In that way, he should serve as a model and inspiration for others.

In this interview, Congressman Massie shares the inside story of those absolutely critical first weeks of lockdowns, providing a deep and penetrating look into why he believed what he did and what fallout that brought down on him during a national hysteria.

He further reveals details not reported before such as the role of the White House in lobbying for the disastrous CARES Act (“the we don’t care act”) from March 2020 that set the stage for economic collapse and the current crisis.

The Brownstone Institute is deeply grateful for his time and the compliments he gives to our work. First the video and then the transcript follows. https://odysee.com/$/embed/thomas-massie/75ad1503ab861c9a8a96d4c48ed5728b02567df7

Jeffrey Tucker:

Hi, this is Jeffrey Tucker at the Brownstone Institute, and I’m thrilled to be here with my friend Thomas Massie, Congressman from Kentucky. Thanks for taking the time to be with us.

Thomas Massie:

Hey, thanks for what you’re doing at the Brownstone Institute. And thanks for having me on to set the record straight.

Jeffrey Tucker:

Well, this is what we need to do. I’m very worried about this because I’m getting concerned that we’re not going to tell this history of what happened properly. There’s a few things that I kind of want to get codified for the record about your involvement from the very early days. So if we could go back to March, 2020, and if you could explain to me what your intuitions were initially when we heard the slogans flatten the curve.

Thomas Massie:

Yes, we were going to flatten the curve, right? We were told that we would take just 15 days to slow the spread. On about the fourth day to slow the spread, I woke up early in the morning and did some math. I did some calculations. By the way, I went to MIT, did undergraduate and graduate degrees there in engineering. So I’ve had a little bit of math. I understand differential equations, but it wasn’t even necessary to bust out the differential equations to figure out that 15 days was not going to slow the spread. I calculated, if this strategy was going to have any effect, it would have to last for months and months, that it would go at least through the summer, if it was going to have any effect at all. I waited for my wife to wake up. She also went to MIT. So I got her to check my homework as she did when we were at MIT. She said, “I think you’re right.”

Jeffrey Tucker:

You did this based on the existing case reporting and what was presumed to be the R-naught at the time, the infection rate.

Thomas Massie:

Yes, that’s correct. At the time we had information from cruise ships, for instance, which are kind of like little test tubes or Petri dishes to look at, okay, if you assume complete exposure, how many are going to get it? How many will come down? How many will it be fatal with? So I made some quick estimates and some assumptions. My assumptions were probably too rosy even. Later that week or that day, I broke it to my staff. I told them, I said, I’ve done some math. This is not 15 days. So on Easter, our governors sent out state troopers to take down the license plates of people who defied him to go to church. Also, there was a woman who tested positive for COVID in Kentucky, and they wanted her to sign a document to say that she wouldn’t leave the state.

She wouldn’t leave her house. She agreed not to leave her house, but she refused to sign a document. She thought, well, what if I have to go … if there’s an emergency, life or death situation. They sent police to her house and put an ankle bracelet on her in Kentucky to track her. So all of these horrific things we saw on the news happening in China were happening in the United States. Meanwhile, Jeffrey, and again, let me get us back to about the fourth day of 15 to slow the spread. We’re being told we’re going to vote on a giant spending package. The numbers were changing. We weren’t sure what the numbers would be, how much would the money be. I was waiting, I was on call. I was ready to come to DC and debate that and vote on that.

Meanwhile, they were making preparations for continuity of government. Now, this is where things are going to sound conspiratorial, but I can point you back to articles that show what was happening in the event that the branches of government quit functioning. There’s sort of a military government that would take over in this country to maintain law and order. They were making preparations for that. They were telling people, if you remember also, not to leave your state. There was a discussion whether to shut down all the New England states, whether basically to stop all traffic in and out of New York state. There were discussions, serious discussions about that. You can go back in the news and find these things.

Jeffrey Tucker:

So March 12th, flights from Europe blocked, or at least stopped, and so everybody had to come back by Monday or Tuesday causing massive overcrowding. The Fauci, Birx, and Trump press conference occurs on Monday the 16th, at which Fauci clarified, everything has to shut down, bars, restaurants, all public events. If there’s evidence of community spread, he said. Birx is saying a new rule: Everybody has to stay separate from everybody else. That was on Monday. So by Friday, you’re saying there’s already talk of a gigantic spending bill.

Thomas Massie:

Yes, gigantic, unprecedented. So I’m sitting there at home. Actually, I believe it was a Wednesday or Tuesday evening. I think it was a Tuesday evening. I saw Trump’s people come on TV. Larry Kudlow was one of them. He said, well, it’s not really a $2 trillion bill you’re underselling. It’s a $6 trillion bill. We’re going to give $400 billion to the Federal Reserve. They can loan that out at a 10-to-one ratio and inject another $4 trillion of liquidity into the economy. It’ll be really $6 trillion. When I realized that the Republicans were bragging that this was $6 trillion, not really $2 trillion, don’t undersell it, I thought we are in trouble.

Thomas Massie:

Then shortly thereafter, I get an email from House leadership that says, stay home. We don’t need anybody here, and we’re going to pass this. By the way, we still didn’t have the wording of it. We’re going to pass the bill with nobody in Congress. Now this concerns me on many different levels. Number one, if the branches of government quit functioning, that gives an excuse for the folks who are up there, circling in airplanes, ready to roll out the plan for continuity of government that doesn’t include the legislative branch or even the existing people in the executive branch.

Jeffrey Tucker:

Yeah. Well, that’s what they wanted. I mean, clearly that’s the way they’ve behaved for two years, by the way.

Thomas Massie:

Yes. So it bothered me in that part. It also bothered me that this was the biggest spending bill in history. Even the omnibus bill was half that size. So the omnibus bill, which sets records every year, is typically like a trillion dollars or $1.1 trillion. And this was going to be over $2 trillion. If you listen to Larry Kudlow, it was a $6 trillion bill. The final thing that bothered me the most is it’s just flat out unconstitutional to pass a bill with nobody there. The Constitution says that you have to have a quorum to do business. In other words, to pass bills that are going to have any legal effect.

Jeffrey Tucker:

Meanwhile, you’ve got public health authorities saying quorums are just going to be super-spreader events. So we can’t have them essentially.

Thomas Massie:

Right. Although, by the way, there was a way for Congress to vote one at a time. We could have gone into the chamber one at a time and voted. There’s no requirement that you all be in the room at the same time, unless you’re trying to pass a bill without a quorum and somebody notes the absence of one. By the way, this was a technical detail I argued with Nancy Pelosi on for about 15 minutes, that it would be safer for us to vote on the bill than to have a quorum call, but we’ll get to that point in chronologically three days from what I’m speaking about now.

So at 11:00 PM that evening, I resolved to go to DC and tell them you’re going to have to vote on this. By midnight, I had my bags packed. I got in my car. It typically takes about eight hours to get to DC for me, but I hadn’t slept. So I slept for one hour at a truck stop. By the way, I stopped at three places to buy gasoline in West Virginia and they were all closed. There are the signs erected on the interstate, get off the interstate, trucks only, stay home. If you could remember, the whole world was in a panic at this time, and people were ready to take advantage of it.

Jeffrey Tucker:

Yeah. Everybody’s forgotten this. I’m so glad you’re telling this. Those were terrifying weeks.

Thomas Massie:

The third exit I took off the interstate, I found a gas station where you could buy gas with a credit card. It was unattended. It was like the zombie apocalypse or something. So I filled up my tank with gas. I slept for an hour at a truck stop after that, and then I made it to DC by 9:00 AM. You can go back and look in the record on tweets, in my tweets. This is sort of documented. They knew I was there. So, they were accusing me of trying to delay the vote, but they had fiddle farted around for about a week. The Senate had passed this and the Senate showed up to pass it, by the way.

Two senators were not there who might have objected. Due to COVID, they weren’t there. Rand Paul and Mike Lee were not in attendance because one of them had had COVID and one of them had been exposed to COVID. So that’s another reason why I ended up bearing the brunt of this. So I showed up that morning, and this is documented in social media history, in my tweets. There’s these breadcrumbs in the records you can go back and look at if anybody doubts this. I told people, for instance, tweeted out that the Constitution requires a quorum. I was trying to sort of acclimate my colleagues, in fact, that they were going to have to show up and vote. I did something I almost never do. I told our own whip team what my plans were. The whip team says, don’t surprise us. Just tell us what you’re going to do.

We just don’t want to be surprised. Well, then they take that information and they weaponize it against you. I knew they were going to weaponize it against me. They did. They ginnedit up by Thursday when I, in no uncertain terms, told them we were all going to come and vote because I was going to require it. By the way, the parliamentarian who’s ecumenical, he’s neither Republican nor Democrat. He’d been there for four or five Speakers of the House. He agreed with me. He told them Massie’s right. His interpretation of the Constitution is spot on. The Constitution says the House can make its own rules, but those rules can’t violate the Constitution. The Constitution requires a quorum. So they knew I was right. They were going to have to come and vote. They ginned up the entire media against me.

Even Fox was demonizing me. You can go back and hear Geraldo Rivera saying how bad I was and how this was such a bad thing for me to do. Meanwhile, they did find some things about the bill they didn’t like. They found $25 million for the Kennedy Center for the Arts. As if that was the problem with the bill, that it wasted a little bit of money here or there. Not that it was going to bankrupt our country or that it was going to basically put all the governors in a moral hazard where they had to shut down their own economies.

Jeffrey Tucker:

Right. Maybe we want to go there because I don’t think this critique is widely understood. In other words, every time I make it, people are shocked by the point. I got the point from you. I had never thought about it. Your point is that … it was called the Cares Act. Am I right?

Thomas Massie:

Yes. I called it the Don’t Cares Act.

Jeffrey Tucker:

Yeah. But your argument from the very beginning was that this would operate as a kind of a subsidy for the lockdowns. It would perpetuate lockdowns.

Thomas Massie:

Yes.

Jeffrey Tucker:

Can you explain how that works?

Thomas Massie:

Until a year later there weren’t really any federal lockdowns or mandates or things like that. It was all being promulgated by the governors, but it was done, number one, with the imprimatur of Dr. Fauci and Dr. Birx. They were skirting around, skipping around to all the state health departments and giving the imprimatur of the federal government to do these things. In fact, if the governors had gone the other way after hearing the advice from the federal government, it would’ve opened them up to a lot of lawsuits, because here you had the CDC and the NIH and the top scientists in the federal government advising one thing. So you had the imprimatur of the federal health policy experts that worked for Trump at the time. They had too much slack to go do this. Then meanwhile, you had the funding from the federal government. 

One of the arguments my Constitutional conservative colleagues were making, that I was a little bit sympathetic to at first, was that this is a taking, and the Fifth Amendment requires us to compensate people for takings. Here’s the problem. The takings hadn’t happened yet. We were bribing governors to do the takings. By the way, if the state does the taking, it’s not the federal government’s obligation to do the paying back.

Jeffrey Tucker:

Right.

Thomas Massie:

Ultimately, the only thing I thought that would bring the governors to their senses is when they shut down their own economies, they would not have tax revenue, and they can’t print money, and they would be shutting down their own governments.

Jeffrey Tucker:

Right. But then suddenly, after the Cares Act passes, of course there’s tremendous pressure now already from the bottom to give us money, give us money. We want this money. Then after it started arriving, there was no reason to open up. Suddenly, the federal government became benevolent and generous.

Thomas Massie:

Yes.

Jeffrey Tucker:

In a way we had never seen before in our lifetimes.

Thomas Massie:

Right. You had things like minimum basic income. If you look at some of these policies, it was like we’re just going to give you money. By the way, it was a $2 trillion bill, but I said the $1,200 checks were the cheese and the trap. People saw $1,200, but if you multiplied … and I thought I would get some sympathy from the Democrats for this. If you looked at how much money was going out and compared it to the $1,200 checks that were going to go out, it was like 10 to one. The money was going somewhere else. It wasn’t going to individuals, but nobody was doing the math on that. By the way, Jeffrey, just to close out this point, Ron DeSantis, who in my opinion is the best governor, bar none, in the United States, even he shut down Florida for a little while as soon as the Cares Act passed.

He was also put in the same situation, but he did something brilliant. He banned Dr. Fauci and Dr. Birx from coming to Florida and talking to any state employee. That was a stroke of brilliance. So you’re not going to spread the imprimatur, the federal government, and establish that baseline here in Florida. You’re banned. He banned them.

Jeffrey Tucker:

Yeah. So he was suspicious from the beginning about this, but it took him a long time to finally … that sounds like he opened up Florida entirely until about August, right? Or may have been sooner than that, July.

Thomas Massie:

Yeah. I don’t remember the exact timeline, but again, I want to give him a lot of credit because he was at the forefront of this. But what I’m saying is the federal government really put all the governors in a bind by sending out this money. That was my problem with it is the policies were bad. You were going to pay people not to work. By the way, I pointed out at the time for about a month, I went on a road trip of shows, trying to explain to people all the bad things that were going to emanate from this. For instance, I own a farm and I’m connected to a lot of farmers in Kentucky. I realize if you don’t plant fruit trees that summer, it takes three years for a peach tree to bear fruit and five years for an apple tree to bear fruit.

If those people who normally plant those trees aren’t planting them, the tail on these shortages and price increases is at least five years long. I took some of my cattle to a processor that processes beef cattle, and I saw healthy dairy cattle being processed into hamburgers because, at the time, because of the shutdowns, we had dairy that couldn’t go into the market. Farmers were feeding dairy cattle, milking them, and pouring the milk out because it was normally packaged to go to schools and to go to restaurants, and it wasn’t packaged for selling in restaurants. They didn’t even have enough equipment to package it, to sell it in restaurants.

So they then just pour out the milk. You can only do that for so long. Eventually, they were butchering dairy cattle. It takes three years from the time you decide you want a milk cow to create a cow that can milk. The mother has to gestate. It has to be born. It has to reach breeding age. It has to be bred itself. Then it gets its milk when it has its first calf. That’s a 3-year process. Those were the things I was trying to explain at the time that we were touching off by telling everybody to stay home and not go anywhere.

Jeffrey Tucker:

That’s just one sector. You’ve got tens of millions of them, you’ve got the chip issue abroad. God knows what happened to baby formula. So these supply chain issues were utterly wrecked by these closures, not just domestically, but internationally.

Thomas Massie:

Absolutely wrecked, and still we’re feeling the long chain of this, the bolus. I don’t even know that we’re at the peak or the tail end of it yet because they sort of compound. These issues compound. Anyways, this was my great fear. By the way, it was a living nightmare for me to see this three years, five years into the future, the kids who are going to miss two years of education and socialization and whatnot. By the way, there was, at the time … this is another bit of irony. This CDC was telling everybody, including Congress, not to wear masks. Just to go back and look at the video of me there in Congress, demanding the roll call vote in the quorum and to see that nobody had a mask on.

Jeffrey Tucker:

Yeah, that’s right. Yeah, I remember that was briefly … That was also the time when the virus was considered to be inside. No, it was considered to be outside, so we had to be inside, and then later the virus moved.

Thomas Massie:

Yeah, and it was droplets. By the way, Nancy Pelosi later created a Plexiglas box in Congress. After accusing me of putting everybody in Congress at risk of losing their lives, come January 3rd of the next year, she created a Plexiglas box with no top in the gallery of Congress, right below the air conditioning vent, where the air is being blown into the House of Representatives for people with COVID to come and vote for her to be speaker.

Okay. So back to the date of … it was, I believe, the 10th day of 15 to slow the spread where I made the motion. It went from Wednesday to Thursday. Again, they’re fiddling around. They came up with this plan. Instead of passing it by unanimous consent, they were able to placate some of my colleagues by offering instead a voice vote instead of unanimous consent, which are virtually the same. In effect, they are the same. The only difference being they would debate the bill. They would spend four hours debating the bill. If you wanted, you could register … instead of voting against the bill, you could register your objection during the debate.

By the way, each side had two hours. The time was equally divided and everybody was here in Washington, DC because I was quoting the Constitution and it required them to show up. I went to the man managing the time on our side, the Congressman. I said, “When can I have a minute or couple minutes or a minute, or 30 seconds even to debate this bill?” He said, “Oh, we didn’t know you wanted to speak on this issue. So you’re not in the queue. We don’t have time for you to debate it.”

Can you imagine that? They all hate me for breathing air because I compelled their attendance on the biggest spending bill in history. They claim that they wouldn’t even yield me 30 seconds because they didn’t know I was interested in discussing the merits or demerits of this bill.

Jeffrey Tucker:

How was the vote finally taken? Was it just a voice vote?

Thomas Massie:

So this is interesting. I had to decide at what point I was going to exhaust all of my avenues of protest. I was on the floor watching the floor. By the way, I was whipped. But if people don’t understand what whipping means, the name is appropriate. When you first hear, oh, they whip members of Congress to get them to do something. You think something bad, and then you find out, oh, it’s just trying to get them to vote a certain way. But then once you understand what the whip process involves, I don’t want to say it’s waterboarding, but it’s an exercise in psychological warfare.

They get your friends to call you. They call you in the middle of the night. They call you in the morning. I was sleep deprived. I had people calling me at midnight. I had people offering me better committee assignments. I received a phone call from the president. At the instant I was supposed to make the motion, it would be in order to make the motion, I got three phone calls from the White House. I presumed, I knew who that was, but I couldn’t leave the floor because there’s a moment where things are in order. And if you miss that 3-second window, it’s gone for all of history. Nobody would even cover that moment if I went to the bathroom. I had to sit there for hours to make sure they didn’t do a sneak, the quarterback sneak.

So I get these calls and I couldn’t take them. Obviously I was busy, occupied, but eventually stepped out when they yielded some time to somebody. I realized there would be a few minutes where they couldn’t sneak the bill through. I walked out into the speaker’s lobby and I called the president back. That was a fun phone call. By the way, I’m not going to go into all the details of it because he has graciously, two years later, he’s now endorsed me this week.

Jeffrey Tucker:

Well, anybody who’s curious can look up the public record about the names you were called and who said what to whom. So I think that’s out there and I encourage everybody to do so. Strange times, because all this happened under a Republican House, Senate.

Thomas Massie:

It was a Democrat House, but a Republican president, but the Republican minority leader was one of the people who was whipping me to vote. Not just to vote for it, but just not to object.

Ultimately, you have to decide what your battle is. As I approached that day, I decided that my battle was just to try and get a recorded vote. So I requested a recorded vote and something that has never happened in the eight years that I had been in Congress, and something that’s never happened since that day, they denied my recorded vote. I had earlier, a few years before, asked the parliamentarian, “What would transpire if you were denied a recorded vote? How would they arbitrate that?” Because you have to count … The Constitution says if 20% of Congress wants a vote, you have to give the vote. I said, “Well, how would you count that? How would you physically … what would be the process for that?” He said, “Mr. Massie, it’s so messy. We’ve never denied anybody a recorded vote, and we likely never would.” Well on this day, they did.

I’m not saying that 20% of Congress did stand. In fact, 20% of Congress did not stand. They were all in their seats. Maybe there were five or 10 out of 435 who stood. Then something else that’s unprecedented in the history, since the beginning of Congress, happened that day. They counted people present who were only in the gallery. Typically, you have to be on the floor to participate, but they recognize people in the gallery as being present. Long story short, they denied the recorded vote. I made note that a quorum was not present. They said a quorum was present. At that point, there may have been other parliamentary avenues for me to pursue. But at that point, I let them own their mistake. At that point I had done everything I could do. By the way, when I stood up, they didn’t give me even 30 seconds or five minutes to debate this bill.

So I did something that is not in order. Instead of just making a motion that a quorum is not present, I got about 20 seconds of speech out before they ruled me out of order. Then I made my order. I said, “Madam Speaker, I’m here today to make sure that our Republic does not die by unanimous consent in an empty chamber. And I object on the basis that a quorum is not present.” I saw them about to gavel me down, but at least I got one sentence into that debate and injected it while I was making my motion.

Jeffrey Tucker:

Absolutely beautiful. Can I ask a slightly naive question? I don’t understand. Nobody understands how this stuff works, but March 12th, we got the shutdown time. HHS on March 13th releases a document that says, oh, if community spread gets bad, we’re going to shut everything down. But Trump has not given the order yet. March 16th, he goes out to the press conference, having been persuaded over the course of the weekend. Oh, now we should shut down. Ten days after that you’ve got a bill. How big?

Thomas Massie:

It was enormous, but I didn’t print it out. I don’t even know that there was time to print it out, but it was, I think, $2.2 trillion in hard dollars. They said $6trillion in spending authority, basically.

Jeffrey Tucker:

Here’s the question I have. Who wrote this? If somebody had to … where does this stuff come from? If all the politicians are panicked at home, worried about COVID, and the government shut down, what are these bills? Is there some machine out there that cranks them?

Thomas Massie:

It was written in part by the White House. The White House had a lot of input into it. In fact, I was told … By the way, one of my best friends is Mark Meadows. You can believe they employed him to whip me. He was chief of staff at the White House at the time. By the way, I have to say, I love Mark Meadows dearly. The two of us architected the coup that took out John Boehner.

So we’ve been in the trenches together and he didn’t really try to whip me that hard, but I told him, I said, “Mark, this is the biggest spending bill I’ve ever seen. It’s way too much money.” He said, “Well, it is. It’s more money than we need. The reason it’s so big is so we don’t have to come back and pass another one.”

He probably thought that at the time. I didn’t believe it. Later we came back and spent another $4 trillion after that first $2 trillion. So he was not correct in his assessment, but he had input into it. I’m telling you that the White House had input into it just based on my discussions with chief of staff Meadows. There were people from Wall Street that had input on it. This is where I would’ve expected AOC and Bernie Sanders to speak up, because this was the biggest transfer of wealth from the middle class to the upper class in the history of humankind. The Roman emperors couldn’t pull this off.

Jeffrey Tucker:

Do you believe that all this happened between the 16th and the 24th? Do you really believe that a bill this size with this level of specificity was hatched in those 10 days?

Thomas Massie:

I don’t know. I can’t go too deep into that, but I can tell you, I think one of the reasons they were so upset with the prospect that I might delay the bill is that some transactions had already occurred and that it would be illegal. What they had done would be illegal if they didn’t quickly also pass the bill to consummate the transfers that were happening. Because you see, this is March 27th. It’s a Friday. Then there’s a weekend, and the quarter ends on March 31st. It was so irrational that they would get so upset, or maybe somebody stood to collect interest on $2 trillion over the weekend. What would be the interest on $2 trillion in somebody’s bank? But it doesn’t make sense. Maybe someday somebody can go back and exhume the artifacts of the transactions and the wire transfers and what actually happened.

Jeffrey Tucker:

There’s a lot of strange things. I even think about this HHS, March 13th document, which is apparently secret. I don’t know if you even saw it at the time, but the New York Times reported on it about a month later. They already had a blueprint out before Trump had been persuaded.

Thomas Massie:

I don’t know if we’re going to get … I want to make sure we don’t forget about this when we’re laying down what’s happened here, because this is one of the most important things. If you go look at the Fed’s balance sheet in March, they did a couple things. One, the balance sheet tripled overnight, somewhere in that period. They say part of that’s due to the redefined certain terms. On the money supply, they show the money supply also went up enormously, and they said, well, that’s because we changed.

Jeffrey Tucker:

I think that was in May. Am I right about that?

Thomas Massie:

Yeah. Well, you may be right, but here’s the main point.

Jeffrey Tucker:

The balance sheet anyway. It was already expanding before the bill was passed.

Thomas Massie:

Yeah. I don’t know when the definition changed, but here’s what happened. There wasn’t $6 trillion to borrow over the last two years. There’s borrowing authority, but then there’s also, who’s going to loan you that money. Up until that point, we had accumulated $24 trillion of debt, primarily by borrowing from other countries, by borrowing from corporations, by selling treasuries to individuals who wanted a safe investment. So we had accumulated $24 trillion, but when you go out to borrow another $2 trillion, it’s not sitting around. People don’t have it to loan to you. So what happened and what has happened again, and is happening over the last two years, is the Federal Reserve created roughly $6 trillion out of thin air.

Jeffrey Tucker:

Right, according to M2 anyway. Right.

Thomas Massie:

Yeah, and according to their balance sheet. They had a fairly large balance sheet with some bad debt and stuff they had accumulated, but nothing compared to the $5 or $6 trillion that they’ve added to it. I’ve got a debt clock here in my office and, in the last two years, it’s jumped from $24 trillion to $30 trillion. But the alarming thing, or maybe it’s comforting to you, we didn’t really borrow $6 trillion. The Federal Reserve created it and then we borrowed it from the Federal Reserve. The Federal Reserve, their balance sheet includes more Treasury securities than anybody else holds. Not Japan, not China. Nobody holds as much Treasury securities as the Federal Reserve right now. It was a shell game. The reason I know I’m chronologically a little bit out of order, because I’m talking also about the next $4 trillion that was spent, but it started on March 27th.

They didn’t find $2 trillion on March 27th to borrow. This is why you have inflation and why it’s not going away. It’s baked in. There’s 30% inflation baked into everything now. That was one of my concerns at the time. I articulated it. Go back in the annals of Twitter and you will find that I am saying this will create inflation and it will create shortages. So some people say, well, what did you accomplish? You didn’t even force the recorded vote. Well, I think I proved that government could still operate, that we didn’t need some contingency government to kick in. I protected the Constitution that day. But also look at what happened after that.

On March 28th, or the next Monday, the White House announced, you know what? We’re not going to shut down New York and other New England states. We’ve decided to leave them open. So it’s sort of like, by compelling all of those members of Congress to engage in interstate travel, I showed that it was still possible. Now some of those members of Congress, there were four members of Congress looking at each other on an empty plane. But because we kept things going, they had to acknowledge you could still travel. So that, I feel like, is one of the things that was accomplished.

Jeffrey Tucker:

It’s hard for people to remember these days. In fact, maybe you sense this too, I see an active campaign to forget, to pretend as if this never happened. Even Fauci yesterday in testimony said “We never locked down. There weren’t really any lockdowns.”

Thomas Massie:

By the way, I just remembered the name General Terrence J. O’Shaughnessy. You can put that in a search engine and a Newsweek article. Also, he showed up on Fox. That was going to be your leader of the contingency government. They were introducing him to people that week. Go look at it. It’s in the record. They can’t memory haul it.

Jeffrey Tucker:

Okay. Okay. Well, there is so much more we could talk about. I think we should maybe I hope do that someday, but I think we should stop here because I know you’re busy and we have covered this early section really, really well. I just think it’s extremely important we know this history because, as I say, I’m sensing there’s an effort to bury all this, pretend like it never happened.

Thomas Massie:

Yeah. There was a phone call with members of Congress and Dr. Fauci, just to sort of close this out. I remember two of the questions that were asked, one by me and one by Representative McClintock from California. Representative McClintock from California asked, and this was around about that time. It may have been April or May, but McClintock asked, “Dr. Fauci, in these policies, have you taken into account the side effects of shutting down the government on the health of people? For instance, poverty is one of the leading indicators of shorter lifespans, and this is going to create some level of poverty. We’re going to impoverish people by shutting down our economy. Have you taken that into account?” Dr. Fauci said, “I’m just singly focused on this one virus and that’s what I’m working on.”

Thomas Massie:

That was a wake-up call to me, very dangerous. The question that I asked was, “I know you can’t tell us the date at which you think everything should be opened up, because there’s so many issues, but what are the criteria that we need to meet in order for you to recommend opening our country back up?” He had no criteria because they really had no criteria other than panic for shutting it down. That’s when I knew we were in for a long haul and we were in for a lot of trouble as long as Dr. Fauci was in charge.

Jeffrey Tucker:

You figured it was going to last till November.

Thomas Massie:

At least until November. Oh, Jeffrey, let me tell you one more thing. It’s so important. So important. Congress and my Republican colleagues in particular were arguing that it was too dangerous to vote in person in March. Then they turned around and, by November, all 50 states implemented methods and procedures for our constituents to vote remotely. For the first time we had a remote election, but Congress was setting the prototype for it on March 27th. This was a chess move.

Jeffrey Tucker:

Amazing, amazing.

Thomas Massie:

I’ll be honest, on March 27th I didn’t recognize it, but very quickly within a couple weeks, I realized they were setting the precedent for remote voting in all 50 states by arguing, if it’s too dangerous for members of Congress who have paid government healthcare, security guards, very good ventilation wherever they meet, if it’s too dangerous for them to show up and vote, how could you then later argue that American people have to show up and vote? So anybody who’s upset about election fraud or how the elections were carried out, or these drop boxes or the mailing in, your Republican members of Congress were arguing that it was too dangerous for them to vote. Then they set the precedent for everybody else to vote remotely.

Jeffrey Tucker:

It’s weirdly ingenious, or maybe it’s accidentally brilliant, or God knows. I don’t know. Well anyway, thank you Congressman for helping us. You’re guiding us through these early days, which are so important. I’m very happy that you’re able to set that record straight. I hope we visit again very soon.

Thomas Massie:

Thank you for documenting this for history. I hope you etched this into a gold CD rom and can put it in a copper container that can’t be corroded and save it in a time capsule, because the winners write history, right?

Jeffrey Tucker:

That’s right.

Thomas Massie:

They’re going to try and rewrite history. They already are. They’re changing definitions. They’re setting up a ministry of truth. They’re doing all this so that they can establish history. God bless you for trying to establish the real history with the facts of what happened.

Jeffrey Tucker:

We’ve just begun. Thank you, Congressman.

Thomas Massie:

Thank you.

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Public health shooting itself (and us) in the foot

4/28/2022  By Vinay Prasad

The problem is not rogue online misinformation; it is errors from CDC, NIAID, and the White House

Apr 28 Comment Share

Building trust in institutions is vital to their success, but as we enter the third year of the pandemic, public health still seems hellbent on destroying itself.

In recent weeks, we have seen flip flops on major policy proposal: a vaccine passport for domestic air-travel and authorizing the Pfizer vaccine for kids ages 6mo-4 years. These were publicly flirted with, but eventually abandoned. The administration has pushed medical products through, without the traditional advisory boards (as in the case of the 4th dose for Americans over 50).  We have witnessed absurd contradictions– that Kyrie Irving can watch the basketball game from the first row, but not play on the court–, and worse, that this rule only applies in New York city. Finally, the prospect that mask mandates may return in the fall looms over us, even as our rules become more absurd, with restaurant servers and preschoolers acting as the last, powerless people tasked with masking for all.  Public health, the institution, must own these absurdities and contradictions because the CDC has the scope and authority to correct them with clear guidance.  Just as we need trust, public health seems poised to destroy it .   Let’s consider these cases:

In early October 2021 Ashish Jha, the newly selected Biden COVID Czar, suggested a vaccine mandate for domestic air travel, a view he reiterated in late January 2022.  On Dec 27th, Anthony Fauci emphasized the idea of a vaccine passport for domestic air travel.  Politico reports that Dr. Jha has long advised the administration on health policy, and Dr. Jha has confirmed he received  “updates and announcements” from the administration prior to his appointment.  Then silently, the proposal was abandoned with no action taken. As a close observer, I was confused as to what happened.

Similarly, in Feb 2022, the FDA asked Pfizer to submit data from an ongoing, and to date, negative trial for vaccination in kids ages 6mo to 4 years. An advisory committee was scheduled to discuss the results, which was leaked to news outlets as a reduction in symptomatic cases– one of the trials secondary objectives.  Then, at the penultimate moment, the application was withdrawn and the advisory committee was cancelled.  These flip flops were jarring. In the latter case, many parents were crushed, and felt as if the rug were pulled out from them. Scientists voiced protest, suggesting the vaccine be approved anyway. But I was most concerned that an approval based on inadequate data would further poison vaccine hesitancy at all ages, and for other vaccines (so called spill-over effects). Even as it stands, this whipsaw news coverage may yet undermine parental trust.

Last year, the top two officials at US FDA famously resigned, citing pressure from the White House to approve boosters (a 3rd dose) for all adults, despite inadequate data showing benefit at young ages.  Now without this institutional memory, the White House pushed ahead with an ambitious plan to authorize a 4th dose of the original, ancestral Wuhan strain mRNA product for anyone 50 or older. The advisory committee, a bulwark of transparency and independence, was skipped and the product has now been pushed through.  This is a controversial decision because the data showing a 4th dose helps older people is based on observational studies, which are often unreliable, and, in this case, plagued by the bias that wealthier people preferentially sought it out. Better outcomes after a 4th dose cannot be disentangled from better socioeconomic factors.  Moreover, there are underappreciated risk of more doses of the same vaccine, including original antigenic sin. This term means that at some point in the future, if we authorize a different vaccine made to target a new variant, recipients of 4th doses of the older vaccine may be more likely to mount an antibody response to the original strain and not the modified spike protein.  This is an unknown risk to the current policy.

The public saga of Kyrie Irving reminded the world just how absurd COVID policies can be. Mr. Irving is an employee of the Brooklyn Nets, and subject to NYCs employer vaccine mandate.  As such he cannot work in NYC. But recently NYC dropped the vaccine and mask mandate to attend Brooklyn nets games. Kyrie can stand in the front row and cheer, but he cannot stand on the court. He can also play during away games, and visiting unvaccinated players can play in New York. The policy was so contradictory that Kevin Durant, a teammate, called it ‘ridiculous’. In response to criticism, the mayor exempted athletes from the mandate, a band-aid solution that makes the policy even more unjust to average workers, and is now what some are calling the “Kyrie carveout.”

Finally, we continue to be obsessed with masks. Masking kids, preschoolers, and possibly restoring mask mandates in the Fall, if cases rise.  This rhetoric belies the deep truth: we know very little about when and if community mask mandates slow the spread.  Moreover, in a country where any adult who wishes to get vaccinated for the last year could get vaccinated, the purpose of mandatory masks, even if they work (like tight fitting n95s), seem pointless.  Sars cov 2 will eventually infect nearly everyone on earth., a fact acknowledged by Anthony Fauci. Delaying this inevitability while stoking political anger seems a foolish proposition.

Public health is, to some degree, responsible for these contradictions, inconveniences, and irrationalities. Government agencies and actors have failed to articulate the goals. Failed communicate uncertainty, especially around masking kids– an intervention where the US deviates from Europe and the World Health Organization.  The Surgeon General is on a hunt for misinformation, and upset with podcaster Joe Rogan, but appears entirely incapable of introspection. Trust in public health is gone not despite the actions of public health, but because of them.  When a star dies, it may shower pieces across the galaxy, and if public health implodes, Americans will seek out snake-oil salesman and charlatans, and we will have only ourselves to blame.

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Silent No More: Voices Against Restrictions and Mandates

Silent No More: Voices Against Restrictions and Mandates

By Sarabeth Matilsky   April 27, 2022   Society   16 minute read SHARE | PRINT | EMAIL

Around the world, people are coming together to stand up for bodily autonomy, and against the widespread harm that emergency measures and covid mandates are having on society. We must find and support each other.

Here are a few voices: a white, Catholic NYPD lieutenant (unvaccinated, Covid-recovered) who was forced to take early retirement when his religious exemption was denied after having worked for the police department for 18 years; a black activist and employee at the MTA who wore a bulletproof vest to work in February to protest and bring attention to the dangerous working conditions for both workers and riders on the NYC transit system, and is vaccinated for Covid but tore up his vaccine card to protest the “racist and unconstitutional mandates”; a comedian who wrote a stand-up routine concerning his experience with Covid vaccine injury; and an activist who co-wrote the eloquent official statement released by the Black Caucus of the Minneapolis Green Party, denouncing Covid mandates.

Some of these interviews were conducted on behalf of the Children’s Health Defense by a woman who moved her family to Florida when her husband realized he would soon lose his job due to vaccine mandates…and a former special education teacher in the NYC public schools who continues to work, along with more than a thousand other NYC teachers, and many thousands of other formerly “essential workers”, to compel New York City to allow skilled professionals to have their jobs back without regard to vaccine status. Some of these voices are from Defeat the Mandates LA.

——

John Macari

I was a lieutenant with the police department for 18 years, with zero disciplinary history. I was preparing for the captain’s exam to move up through the ranks of the NYPD. I get in my car the first day of the lockdown, and I thank God that I have this job, that I get to try to bring order to chaos in this city. 

I worked through the whole summer of the riots, every day. 

I was out there _every day_. For the first six months, no police officers wore masks. I supported the order to wear them when we started, because it was the same for everyone, and no one was being treated differently.

I contracted Covid prior to vaccines being readily available, I got pneumonia from it, and treatment in New York City at that time was awful. I couldn’t get basic medicine, I was begging for a Z-pack six days into my pneumonia… 

I finally healed. I rush back to work, and everything‘s fine, and next thing I know, the mask and testing mandate comes out for the unvaccinated. I was pretty upset about this, and I spoke at a couple of union meetings about it, and I felt it was very discriminatory: you’re creating two tiers of employees: vaccinated, and unvaccinated. I tested my antibodies, and I had _very_ high levels. I just felt that it wasn’t right to tell one group that you don’t have to test or mask, but the other group: you’ve gotta test, you gotta wear a mask, you’re not allowed at ceremonies…and at that point, the union stance was, they’re going to mandate vaccines so there’s nothing you can do about it.

And again, I kept saying, what’s my recourse in any of this? I submitted to the testing for four months, and I never tested positive, even though many of the employees who did take the vaccine to avoid going through the masking and the testing, got Covid! 

From the beginning, many of my colleagues did not want to wear a mask and did not want to take the test, and they didn’t feel the need for it – they had already worked the year prior, and they had ways to keep themselves healthy other than medicine. Myself, I never really went to the doctor much, and my first interactions with them was when I had pneumonia from Covid. At that time the doctors, including the NYPD doctors, as the vaccine started to roll out, said, “If you’re going to take the vaccine, we suggest against you taking it right after a recent infection.”

And to me, it made total sense, because I had chickenpox, so I didn’t run out and get the chickenpox vaccine. So all of these things played in my head throughout the whole time they’re pushing this vaccine down our throats: we get these emails, “Hey you’re a danger, it’s a pandemic of the unvaccinated.” I’m listening to mayor de Blasio go on TV every morning and call the unvaccinated “Criminals.” 

Even though, my vaccinated colleagues keep coming into work with Covid, exposing me to it, and I’m still not getting it again. And I keep getting tested, and I’m not getting it. In October, when the vaccine actually became mandated, I submitted my religious exemption, I submitted my sincerely held religious beliefs. I am familiar with OEO law, I’m familiar with with The Human Rights Act of New York State, and I’m familiar with the Civil Rights Act of 1964. 

So I submit for my religious exemption, saying basically that I believe in God‘s healing powers, I believe he healed me from Covid, I believe the antibodies were given to me through God. I also do not take medicine, I don’t take aspirin when I have a headache, I don’t take medicine for _any_ reason when I’m not sick. If I do need medicine, I’m _sick._ I point to two verses in the Bible, where it says twice: Jesus says, those who are sick are in need of a doctor, and those who are not sick, do not. And even though the Catholic Church tells me that there’s nothing against this vaccine as a tenet of my religion, I believe that it is a tenet of my religion, and whether they want to admit to that or not, it is clearly written in the Bible. 

The other thing is, I’m a big believer in the truth, and I was always taught through my whole career: Have integrity! Have integrity! I wanna be the guy who walks into a precinct, where 300 guys are dealing drugs, and I’m gonna be the guy that stops that. I’m the guy who’s gonna lock criminals up, I’m not gonna be the guy who partakes in any of that sin. So I’m a big believer in the truth, and what I believe to be the truth, and I see that I’m not harming anyone by not taking the vaccine, and I’m not doing anything wrong. 

And basically I submitted that exemption application, and I said, Hey, you’re offering me $500 to go against my religious beliefs! It’s almost bribery, it’s wrong, I can’t even believe we are at at this point, and I feel that for me to take the vaccine would violate my conscience, which would damn me, not only to hell here on earth, but also to hell in the afterlife.

Meanwhile, of course, athletes and entertainers are allowed to work without vaccination, but not the essential workers.

There are 5000 NYPD members that are still waiting to hear the results of their appeals. And that’s just in the police department! 

I’m not a danger to anyone, I went through Omicron and Delta, I’ve never tested positive again, and even if I did, so do vaccinated people! You know what I mean? It’s so arbitrary and capricious, it’s not even funny. And at the same time, I’m being rejected and some of my coworkers are being rejected – only 30% of them are being approved for the religious exemptions. So New York City is completely violating OEO law on this, New York City is no longer an OEO employer, and I don’t know how they can even put that tag on themselves, since they’re not following the law. They’re basically telling one guy who submits a religious exemption, Okay yeah, you’re approved. Then I submit the same exact religious exemption, and: You are denied. So… Someone’s religion is is an undue hardship to the city, and another one’s isn’t? It’s completely arbitrary and capricious, none of it makes sense, and it’s been the same way with the mask mandate on the MTA. 

Personally, I had to give up my career. I’m not where I thought I would be, I thought I would getting ready to be a captain in the NYPD and pursue higher ranks. At the end of the day, I’m still blessed, but I’m worried for New York City. I love New York City, I worry for all the young guys that are still living in that city and trying to raise a family, and anyone, any city worker like teachers, nurses, these are great people and they’re being demonized. As crime runs wild in the city, all of a sudden, the people that pay their taxes, the bear the brunt of everything in the city, they are turned into the bad guys, and I just pray for New York. I really do.

There were MANY of my colleagues who took this vaccine and they did not want to take this vaccine. They took it to keep their employment, to put food on the table, and I would never judge anyone for doing that, but it was horrible, the way they were being pushed into it. 

The days before you were allowed to submit an exemption, people felt the pressure. Even myself, and I’m not a guy who feels much pressure, I tell you, my right eye at the time was fluttering. It was fluttering for weeks and months leading up to that day…and in that line, at One Police Plaza, everyone’s there lining up to get the shot. And I’m seeing hundreds of guys lining up, day in, day out – as the days got closer it was more and more. It went from 40% vaccinated, to 60% vaccinated, 75% vaccinated… And people were feeling the pressure, and the unions weren’t there for them, they felt they had nowhere to go, and I felt the same way. Which is why I started to look for different career options. I was like, I can’t believe I’m doing this, in my 18th year, looking for different career options! I’m down there at work, I’m watching grown men, with tears in their eyes, sit down, take a shot that they don’t want to take, stand up enraged, and immediately storm out of there: “I had no choice. I had no choice!!!” Same thing with women. 

And you know, these are not your average New Yorkers, these are tough, tough people. They’re New York City police officers, they see and go through things that other people have nightmares about. They deal with these things numerous times per day, they are not your average people, and you watch that response to the mandates…it really just cemented my own conviction even more: Hey listen, I can’t do that, I can’t violate my conscience. I can’t sit there and tell my children to do the right thing, to speak up for the truth, and to protect the weak, I can’t tell that to them if I don’t do it. If I were to succumb to take this thing just as compliance, none of it making sense to me, none of it in my religion…I can make money doing something else. If New York City doesn’t want people like you there, if they don’t want people of faith there, it’s time to move on, then. Let Mayor Eric Adams put his uniform back on, and he can be the cop! He can arrest people. He didn’t do it when he was, but he could try now!

For me personally, I grew up in Brooklyn, I lived in Staten Island, I never pictured myself leaving New York. My neighbors loved me, I shoveled the snow for all my neighbors, my whole family is in New York, I _never_ thought that I would leave New York. I thought that I would retire an old man from the police department, maybe get myself a little condo in Florida and travel back-and-forth, and raise my children here. It just didn’t work out that way. I had to leave my career, to basically put food on the table. I had to come to Florida to come to a state that supports my faith.

… Meanwhile, I have no health benefits for my kids, I have no steady check coming in anymore, and I have a disabled daughter, who is blind. She needs care all the time, and it’s a scary world out there. But it’s even scarier to think that, hey: they could ask me to stick whatever they want in my body…and I have to do it? Or force a medical procedure on me just so I can keep my check? I don’t believe in that, and I put my faith in God and I stick to my morals. As stressful and as hard as it is, I still count my blessings. I loved being a cop, I had a great time, and thank God I did save the way I did and I can get through the hard times now. 

——

Jimmy Dore, comedian; injured by his second Covid vaccine dose, he created a stand-up routine about it. This is the very end:

…Well, it’s been great to talk to all of you white supremacists! And in honor of your white supremacy, I’m going to read the statement from the Black Caucus of the Green Party, which got it right: lockdowns, mandates, and passports are the major issue of the day, with millions of people protesting against them worldwide. In fact, what has become known as the medical freedom movement is arguably the biggest and most diverse international movement in the world‘s history. And you’re part of it! Vaccine mandates, and vaccine passports, are among the most vile, unconstitutional, immoral, unscientific, discriminatory, and outright criminal policies ever to be forced upon this population…

That’s the Black Caucus of the Green Party, [effing] white supremacists! 

Don’t turn on each other! I have more in common with every person here than I do with Bill Gates. We have more in common than we do with the oligarchs! Don’t turn on your neighbor, keep your attention on the oligarchy, and [eff] authoritarianism. Stand together, love your neighbor, don’t turn on them, support each other! Thank you for being here, stop the mandates!

——

Trahern Crews, co-author of the Black Caucus Green Party statement referenced above:

…I am now an organizer with Black Lives Matter Minnesota, and we still feel that the mandates are unconstitutional, especially with the history here with Black people in the medical field. It’s just a no-brainer that we don’t accept the vaccine mandates. We’ve been working in the jails here; my sister’s son died from neglect and abuse in the county jail. They tried to tell her he died in their arms and they tried to revive him, but when we got the footage back, we found out that he was laying on the floor for eight hours and they just watched him die when they could have saved him.

So when we’re talking about medical freedom, sometimes even our inmates are being used as guinea pigs inside jails and prisons, and this is another thing we have to watch for. 

[Interviewer: It is so interesting that Black Lives Matter is against the mandates, and the Green Party is against the mandates… And also, the police officers are against the mandates! When else do we see BLM and the police come together on an issue like this?! That kind of tells you something.]

The St. Paul police union actually sued the city here about the vaccine mandate, and I think the fire department got involved, so that’s something we both can agree on for sure.

The truckers came through Minnesota on 94, and then right when they were starting to show up, mandates started dropping around here, so they were pretty effective, driving through St. Paul on 94! (Laughs.)

I think the experience we had in DC [at Defeat the Mandates] was: here’s a way to show that there are people from all walks of life, this is not just white supremacists, and lots of people who are impacted by this are black. Like in New York, 75% of people who are black are unvaccinated, and these are hard-working people, who want to take care of their families, take pride in going to work…but then you’re telling them that they have to get a vaccine that they don’t trust? We’re educated enough to know how long a product takes to get approved, and we’re like, why should we do this?

[in New York City public schools, you can’t enter your
child’s school if you’re not vaccinated! If you don’t show your
segregation pass… And that means 60 to 70% of black parents there can’t
enter their child school.]

After the March in D.C., a sister reached out to me because she wasn’t allowed to get on the subway. And here in Minnesota recently, I saw a man get asked for his papers in a restaurant, and he was turned away, and then I was like: Wow, so now they can just pick and choose who they want to ask!

[In New York City, you’re not required to ask for passports, but you are still ALLOWED to ask…if you want. Have we not learned these lessons already?]

Just yesterday, a Republican Minnesota lawmaker activist called for a vaccine mandate ban. “Whether you’re pro-vax or anti-vax, we are for healthcare freedom, and mandates that are one-size-fits-all should not be on the agenda.”

We’re also working on some reparatory justice work, so if any of your viewers can contact our Republican friends here in Minnesota, and tell them to support HF 3850…and keep fighting against injustice, tyranny, authoritarianism! When we keep pushing like this, we’re going to see these mandates fall across the country!

——

Tramell Thompson

…Now let me tell you all something. I’m going to be honest with you guys: I’m vaccinated, but I did it by choice. I do not subscribe to the mandates that they have us going through in this country! So what I did in New York City is, I went up to Albany, New York and invited 5000 of my friends. I tore up my vaccination card right there, to let them know I would not subscribe to their tyranny. 

Now check this out: this whole entire two years, I thought that the virus was actually Covid. And come to find out, the virus was never Covid: the virus was fear. The virus was control. 

Now if you notice, in 2022, they’re mandating everything but freedom.

In New York, in early 2020, they were calling frontline workers, “heroes.” They was banging pots at 7 PM, clapping for our heroes. In 2022, they’re firing those same heroes, who are trying to have freedom of choice. It’s crazy, right?

… Are you all familiar with Bobby Kennedy Junior? I got a text last night, and it said, “Tramell, come hiking with me in the morning?”

I said, “Bobby, I have a very important event!“ But I forgot, I’m speaking to a Kennedy! I can’t deny this, right? 

But he told me something important. He said, “When we’re going to sleep, the devil was just now putting on their clothes.” 

I said, “Mr. Kennedy, they must not know that our guard don’t sleep either.“ 

Our guard do not sleep!

Now check this out, I want you all to put your hand in the air real quick. If you are American, and you believe in freedom, put your hand in the air! Every time I name a freedom, I want you all to drop a finger: freedom of speech. Freedom of press. Freedom of religion. The right to assemble. The right to petition the government. Do you see this fist? This is our most powerful weapon in this country. It is time to fight back!

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  • Sarabeth Matilsky Sarabeth Matilsky writes about her family’s unschooling adventures, trying to find as much humor as she can.
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The Meltdown of the Mask Cult

The Meltdown of the Mask Cult

By Michael Senger   April 22, 2022   Masks   3 minute read SHARE | PRINT | EMAIL

On Monday, major US airlines suddenly dumped their mask mandates after a federal judge struck down the CDC’s national mask mandate for travel. Since then, the Covid cult has been in a state of apoplexy. Below is a collection of some of the most priceless takes. https://platform.twitter.com/embed/Tweet.html?creatorScreenName=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.twitter.com%2FMichaelPSenger&dnt=true&embedId=twitter-widget-0&features=eyJ0ZndfZXhwZXJpbWVudHNfY29va2llX2V4cGlyYXRpb24iOnsiYnVja2V0IjoxMjA5NjAwLCJ2ZXJzaW9uIjpudWxsfSwidGZ3X3NwYWNlX2NhcmQiOnsiYnVja2V0Ijoib2ZmIiwidmVyc2lvbiI6bnVsbH19&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1516592996086542336&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fbrownstone.org%2Farticles%2Fthe-meltdown-of-the-mask-cult%2F&sessionId=a6c3771daaa1aeb5d02c4ab20fd4d5543ec0ee0a&siteScreenName=brownstoneinst&theme=light&widgetsVersion=c8fe9736dd6fb%3A1649830956492&width=550px

Apparently breathing equals smoking now, according to Bess Kalb. Kalb is most famous for her early 2020 screed about all the young people her dad was seeing in the ICU who were suddenly falling over dead from Covid, which she blamed on their sinful trips to the beach. https://platform.twitter.com/embed/Tweet.html?creatorScreenName=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.twitter.com%2FMichaelPSenger&dnt=true&embedId=twitter-widget-1&features=eyJ0ZndfZXhwZXJpbWVudHNfY29va2llX2V4cGlyYXRpb24iOnsiYnVja2V0IjoxMjA5NjAwLCJ2ZXJzaW9uIjpudWxsfSwidGZ3X3NwYWNlX2NhcmQiOnsiYnVja2V0Ijoib2ZmIiwidmVyc2lvbiI6bnVsbH19&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1257057870136242176&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fbrownstone.org%2Farticles%2Fthe-meltdown-of-the-mask-cult%2F&sessionId=a6c3771daaa1aeb5d02c4ab20fd4d5543ec0ee0a&siteScreenName=brownstoneinst&theme=light&widgetsVersion=c8fe9736dd6fb%3A1649830956492&width=550px

It remains unclear whether Kalb’s father ever actually treated any Covid patients in the ICU. Next we have former Surgeon General Jerome Adams. https://platform.twitter.com/embed/Tweet.html?creatorScreenName=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.twitter.com%2FMichaelPSenger&dnt=true&embedId=twitter-widget-2&features=eyJ0ZndfZXhwZXJpbWVudHNfY29va2llX2V4cGlyYXRpb24iOnsiYnVja2V0IjoxMjA5NjAwLCJ2ZXJzaW9uIjpudWxsfSwidGZ3X3NwYWNlX2NhcmQiOnsiYnVja2V0Ijoib2ZmIiwidmVyc2lvbiI6bnVsbH19&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1516842036132909058&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fbrownstone.org%2Farticles%2Fthe-meltdown-of-the-mask-cult%2F&sessionId=a6c3771daaa1aeb5d02c4ab20fd4d5543ec0ee0a&siteScreenName=brownstoneinst&theme=light&widgetsVersion=c8fe9736dd6fb%3A1649830956492&width=550px

Imposing their beliefs on others… who would do such a thing?! Oh wait… Here’s former Secretary of Labor Robert Reich. https://platform.twitter.com/embed/Tweet.html?creatorScreenName=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.twitter.com%2FMichaelPSenger&dnt=true&embedId=twitter-widget-3&features=eyJ0ZndfZXhwZXJpbWVudHNfY29va2llX2V4cGlyYXRpb24iOnsiYnVja2V0IjoxMjA5NjAwLCJ2ZXJzaW9uIjpudWxsfSwidGZ3X3NwYWNlX2NhcmQiOnsiYnVja2V0Ijoib2ZmIiwidmVyc2lvbiI6bnVsbH19&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1516817193605816320&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fbrownstone.org%2Farticles%2Fthe-meltdown-of-the-mask-cult%2F&sessionId=a6c3771daaa1aeb5d02c4ab20fd4d5543ec0ee0a&siteScreenName=brownstoneinst&theme=light&widgetsVersion=c8fe9736dd6fb%3A1649830956492&width=550px

Something wrong with a system… as in, constitutional democracy? Fortunately, Abdi appears to have just the solution to that. https://platform.twitter.com/embed/Tweet.html?creatorScreenName=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.twitter.com%2FMichaelPSenger&dnt=true&embedId=twitter-widget-4&features=eyJ0ZndfZXhwZXJpbWVudHNfY29va2llX2V4cGlyYXRpb24iOnsiYnVja2V0IjoxMjA5NjAwLCJ2ZXJzaW9uIjpudWxsfSwidGZ3X3NwYWNlX2NhcmQiOnsiYnVja2V0Ijoib2ZmIiwidmVyc2lvbiI6bnVsbH19&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1516618834957979651&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fbrownstone.org%2Farticles%2Fthe-meltdown-of-the-mask-cult%2F&sessionId=a6c3771daaa1aeb5d02c4ab20fd4d5543ec0ee0a&siteScreenName=brownstoneinst&theme=light&widgetsVersion=c8fe9736dd6fb%3A1649830956492&width=550px

That’s right: Disagree with a court ruling on forced masking, threaten to blow up the whole system to get your way. Though perhaps he won’t need to, according to Alex Steed. https://platform.twitter.com/embed/Tweet.html?creatorScreenName=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.twitter.com%2FMichaelPSenger&dnt=true&embedId=twitter-widget-5&features=eyJ0ZndfZXhwZXJpbWVudHNfY29va2llX2V4cGlyYXRpb24iOnsiYnVja2V0IjoxMjA5NjAwLCJ2ZXJzaW9uIjpudWxsfSwidGZ3X3NwYWNlX2NhcmQiOnsiYnVja2V0Ijoib2ZmIiwidmVyc2lvbiI6bnVsbH19&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1516566071968415754&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fbrownstone.org%2Farticles%2Fthe-meltdown-of-the-mask-cult%2F&sessionId=a6c3771daaa1aeb5d02c4ab20fd4d5543ec0ee0a&siteScreenName=brownstoneinst&theme=light&widgetsVersion=c8fe9736dd6fb%3A1649830956492&width=550px

Pretty sure it takes longer than a few seconds to get Covid symptoms, but what do I know. Then there’s this take from Aubrey Hirsch. https://platform.twitter.com/embed/Tweet.html?creatorScreenName=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.twitter.com%2FMichaelPSenger&dnt=true&embedId=twitter-widget-6&features=eyJ0ZndfZXhwZXJpbWVudHNfY29va2llX2V4cGlyYXRpb24iOnsiYnVja2V0IjoxMjA5NjAwLCJ2ZXJzaW9uIjpudWxsfSwidGZ3X3NwYWNlX2NhcmQiOnsiYnVja2V0Ijoib2ZmIiwidmVyc2lvbiI6bnVsbH19&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1516457058534572036&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fbrownstone.org%2Farticles%2Fthe-meltdown-of-the-mask-cult%2F&sessionId=a6c3771daaa1aeb5d02c4ab20fd4d5543ec0ee0a&siteScreenName=brownstoneinst&theme=light&widgetsVersion=c8fe9736dd6fb%3A1649830956492&width=550px

Imagine being from another culture and trying to make sense of this tweet. Heck, I’ve lived in America my entire life, re-read this tweet about five times and still can’t figure out what the heck Aubrey’s talking about. Though in her defense, it’s still a bit more coherent than this take from Evan Greer. https://platform.twitter.com/embed/Tweet.html?creatorScreenName=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.twitter.com%2FMichaelPSenger&dnt=true&embedId=twitter-widget-7&features=eyJ0ZndfZXhwZXJpbWVudHNfY29va2llX2V4cGlyYXRpb24iOnsiYnVja2V0IjoxMjA5NjAwLCJ2ZXJzaW9uIjpudWxsfSwidGZ3X3NwYWNlX2NhcmQiOnsiYnVja2V0Ijoib2ZmIiwidmVyc2lvbiI6bnVsbH19&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1516415356272848896&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fbrownstone.org%2Farticles%2Fthe-meltdown-of-the-mask-cult%2F&sessionId=a6c3771daaa1aeb5d02c4ab20fd4d5543ec0ee0a&siteScreenName=brownstoneinst&theme=light&widgetsVersion=c8fe9736dd6fb%3A1649830956492&width=550px

Capitalism making a mockery of consent… maybe try communism and let us know how that works out. Fortunately, Andrea Junker has just the solution. https://platform.twitter.com/embed/Tweet.html?creatorScreenName=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.twitter.com%2FMichaelPSenger&dnt=true&embedId=twitter-widget-8&features=eyJ0ZndfZXhwZXJpbWVudHNfY29va2llX2V4cGlyYXRpb24iOnsiYnVja2V0IjoxMjA5NjAwLCJ2ZXJzaW9uIjpudWxsfSwidGZ3X3NwYWNlX2NhcmQiOnsiYnVja2V0Ijoib2ZmIiwidmVyc2lvbiI6bnVsbH19&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1516439105613225992&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fbrownstone.org%2Farticles%2Fthe-meltdown-of-the-mask-cult%2F&sessionId=a6c3771daaa1aeb5d02c4ab20fd4d5543ec0ee0a&siteScreenName=brownstoneinst&theme=light&widgetsVersion=c8fe9736dd6fb%3A1649830956492&width=550px

I think Andrea may be waiting quite a while. Or not though, because it looks like the Biden administration is appealing the ruling. As Jen Psaki tells us: https://platform.twitter.com/embed/Tweet.html?creatorScreenName=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.twitter.com%2FMichaelPSenger&dnt=true&embedId=twitter-widget-9&features=eyJ0ZndfZXhwZXJpbWVudHNfY29va2llX2V4cGlyYXRpb24iOnsiYnVja2V0IjoxMjA5NjAwLCJ2ZXJzaW9uIjpudWxsfSwidGZ3X3NwYWNlX2NhcmQiOnsiYnVja2V0Ijoib2ZmIiwidmVyc2lvbiI6bnVsbH19&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1516859903251558400&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fbrownstone.org%2Farticles%2Fthe-meltdown-of-the-mask-cult%2F&sessionId=a6c3771daaa1aeb5d02c4ab20fd4d5543ec0ee0a&siteScreenName=brownstoneinst&theme=light&widgetsVersion=c8fe9736dd6fb%3A1649830956492&width=550px

That’s right. The administration is appealing the ruling against the mask mandate to “preserve that authority for the CDC.” Power, in the purest sense. Of course the state of emergency can have no end point, because it never had any legitimate beginning.

Notably absent from any of these takes is any analysis of how many lives masks are supposedly saving, any analysis of the costs of wearing masks or, most importantly, when exactly the mask mandates are supposed to end. Though there is one telling exception. https://platform.twitter.com/embed/Tweet.html?creatorScreenName=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.twitter.com%2FMichaelPSenger&dnt=true&embedId=twitter-widget-10&features=eyJ0ZndfZXhwZXJpbWVudHNfY29va2llX2V4cGlyYXRpb24iOnsiYnVja2V0IjoxMjA5NjAwLCJ2ZXJzaW9uIjpudWxsfSwidGZ3X3NwYWNlX2NhcmQiOnsiYnVja2V0Ijoib2ZmIiwidmVyc2lvbiI6bnVsbH19&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1516414810233135121&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fbrownstone.org%2Farticles%2Fthe-meltdown-of-the-mask-cult%2F&sessionId=a6c3771daaa1aeb5d02c4ab20fd4d5543ec0ee0a&siteScreenName=brownstoneinst&theme=light&widgetsVersion=c8fe9736dd6fb%3A1649830956492&width=550px

That’s right. To be honest this tweet isn’t really funny, it’s actually just terrifying. There it is, literally, in the most explicit possible terms: Masks forever, with 137,000 likes and counting.

Republished from the author’s Substack

Author

  • Michael Senger Michael P Senger is an attorney based in the United States. He has been researching the influence of the Chinese Communist Party on the world’s response to COVID-19 since March 2020, and previously authored China’s Global Lockdown Propaganda Campaign and The Masked Ball of Cowardice in Tablet Magazine.
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