This may be the biggest ‘I told you so’ of all time.
A few epidemiologists outside the hysteria bubble warned from the beginning that the United States was overreacting with its various compulsory shutdowns and quarantines in response to the Wuhan virus.
Even the most circumspect of these contrarians cautioned our country against reflexive, drastic, and authoritarian measures before the data had come together.
- READ: ‘A fiasco in the making? As the coronavirus pandemic takes hold, we are making decisions without reliable data’ (Dr. John Ioannidis, STAT)
Well, now the data are coming together; and the evidence is mounting that the contrarians were right. Marina Medvin reports at Townhall on a study published recently by Isaac Ben-Israel of Tel Aviv University:
Professor Ben-Israel debunks the misconception of government lockdowns or controls as a leading cause of coronavirus infection rate reductions.
“Some [e.g. Rich Lowry, the New York Post’s resident scientific illiterate] may claim that the decline in the number of additional patients every day is a result of the tight lockdown imposed by the government and health authorities. Examining the data of different countries around the world casts a heavy question mark on the above statement.
“It turns out that similar pattern–a rapid increase in infections that reaches a peak in the sixth week and declines from the eighth week–is common to all countries in which the disease was discovered, regardless of their response policies: some imposed a severe and immediate lockdown that included not only ‘social distancing’ and banning crowding, but also an economic shutdown (Israel); some ‘ignored’ the infection and continued almost a normal life (such as Taiwan, Korea, or Sweden), and some initially adopted a lenient policy but soon reversed to a complete lockdown (such as Italy or the state of New York).
“Nonetheless, the data shows similar time constants among all these countries in regard to the initial rapid growth and the decline of the disease.”
In a nutshell, it looks like ‘flattening the curve’ was a fantasy. The United States probably threw itself into an economic death spiral and civil liberties killing spree for nothing. For reasons yet to be determined, the virus follows a fixed pattern and burns itself out. The Wuhan virus was never going to cascade exponentially through the population and kill millions unless we incarcerated ourselves in our homes, as so many catastrophized. (Any of this remind you of ‘Russian collusion‘?)
SWEDEN VS. THE UNITED STATES
A more recent data analysis published in Spiked! by political scientist Wilfred Reilly reaches similar conclusions when he compares regions in the US:
As a professional political scientist, I have analyzed data from the Worldometers Coronavirus project, along with information about the population, population density, median income, median age and diversity of each US state, to determine whether states that have adopted lockdowns or ‘shelter in place’ orders experience fewer COVID-19 cases and deaths than those which pursue a social-distancing strategy without formal lockdown … In short, I do not find that lockdowns are more effective way of handling coronavirus than well-done social distancing measures.
It looks like we would have done fine with voluntary measures to space people out, putting our resources into supporting hospitals during the rush, while isolating the elderly and those with comorbid conditions, much like the seasonal flu.
And we even might have done without all the spacing people out. Joseph Guzman reports at The Hill:
Instead of imposing strict social-distancing policies like most of the world, Sweden aimed at keeping public life as open as possible, allowing for some exposure to the virus to build immunity among its population [herd immunity]. Sweden rolled out voluntary measures, advising older people and others particularly vulnerable to the virus to avoid social contact. It also recommended people work from home, wash their hands regularly and avoid nonessential travel. But the country’s borders stayed open, along with some schools and many businesses.
Have tens of thousands of Swedes died as a result of their dangerous social closeness and lack of a ‘mask gestapo’? Has their non-flattened curve wrecked the country? Nope:
“In major parts of Sweden, around Stockholm, we have reached a plateau [in new cases] and we’re already seeing the effect of herd immunity, and in a few weeks’ time we’ll see even more of the effect of that. And in the rest of the country, the situation is stable,” Dr. Anders Tegnell, chief epidemiologist at Sweden’s Public Health Agency, told CNBC Tuesday.
WE ARE THE NEW SOVIET UNION
A friend of mine recalled an incident that occurred when he was working in the Soviet Union years ago. After a missile blew up on the launch pad, all the soviets immediately said: “After we deny publicly that this happened, who gets blamed for this to the committee?”
They didn’t ask, “What went wrong?” It didn’t even cross the Russians’ minds to get to the bottom of the fiasco. They went straight to deciding who the scapegoat was going to be.
If this story sounds familiar, that’s because it played out over and over in the former Soviet Union, as dramatized most recently in HBO’s hit miniseries ‘Chernobyl.’ The deny-then-blame game was a signature of authoritarian communism, a way to make sure blame NEVER ended up where it belonged: on the worthless and serially inept system of communist government. The party ideology had to be protected at all costs. Find a patsy and put on a show trial. The party and communist ideology are always right.
Now, it would seem America is the new Soviet Union.
In spite of the emerging evidence that compulsory lockdowns, business closures, masks, social distancing, quarantines, and the like were an unforced error of cataclysmic proportions–not to mention a heinous breach of civil liberties–the lame-stream media and Democrat governors continue to flog the narrative that their authoritarianism was actually super useful and must continue for heavens-knows-how-long.
In effect: “The missile didn’t blow up on the launch pad. That’s just conservative propaganda.”
The Democrat-media complex will never admit they lobbied furiously for a ruinous course, cherry-picking horror stories to scare us all into compliance with house arrest and lopping off our own hand economically. They will deny to the death that they swallowed what they were fed by technocrat ‘experts’ relying on speculative models, then wound up buggering the poodle and destroy countless lives. And for what? Clicks and ideology.
The ideology of the American left–that techno-bureaucratic experts must and should socially engineer every aspect of our little lives–can never be questioned. NEVER.
As their narrative grows increasingly preposterous in the face of further study and public awareness, we can count on the media to pivot and run a campaign of distraction. They will go straight to: “Who gets blamed for the parts of this mess we can’t deny outright, like the depression now in full swing?”
I’ll give you one guess who gets blamed. Go on–guess!
No doubt we will be treated to another Schiff Show, after Pencil Neck & Company figure out:
“How do we lay the authoritarianism and economic devastation wrought by Democratic executives at the feet of Trump, Republicans, and Trump voters? And how do we do that without admitting that technocratic control of everything and everyone still doesn’t work, just like it always hasn’t worked?”
This spectacular nonsense won’t stop until the American people wholly reject the ideological blindness and ass-covering of the left, holding Democrats and their catchfart media accountable for the hysteria and destruction they have foisted on us over and over, and not just with the Wuhan virus.