Delta variant bullet points

Notwithstanding my exasperation with the failure of common sense and skepticism to prevail, I will try one more time to simply list why we shouldn’t get all hysterical again and what data our supposed government experts should be providing.

Let’s start with Delta.  Contrary to the misinformation being spread by many, including the so-called experts, the research to date shows:

  1.  It has a lower hospitalization and death rate.
  2. It is perhaps somewhat more transmissible.
  3. It does not result in substantially higher viral loads.
  4. Vaccines are only marginally less effective against Delta infections.
  5. It does not have a worse impact on children.

Now let us move on to vaccine effectiveness, where we find that:

  1.  People who are vaccinated can get infected, but do so at lower rates than the unvaxed.
  2. People who are vaccinated and get infected have lower viral loads than the unvaxed who become infected.
  3. People who are vaccinated and get infected are less likely to be infectious and transmit.
  4. People who are vaccinated have much lower rates of hospitalization and death than do those who are unvaccinated and get infected.
  5. The research is actually mixed as to whether vaccination or prior infection provides a stronger adaptive immune response.
  6. If you understand adaptive immunity, whether from infection or vaccination, in regard to respiratory viruses, none of the above is a surprise, e.g., the performance of flu vaccines and the difficulty in developing an RSV vaccine.

Now what do we need, other than a complete replacement of said political leaders and experts.

  1.  Provide case, hospitalization and death data by vaccination status and give us days after second dose that the case was identified in the case of “fully” vaccinated individuals.  Full adaptive immunity is unlikely in 14 days, it takes weeks for memory B and T cells to be completely in place.
  2. Give us the age structure of cases, hospitalizations and deaths in the vaccinated as well as the unvaccinated.
  3. Show us at least a very representative sample of cycle numbers from supposedly positive PCR tests in both the vaxed and unvaxed cases.  I am certain this will reveal much higher cycle numbers and lower viral loads in the vaxed cases.
  4. Do representative sampling of supposed positives from vaxed and unvaxed persons and attempt to culture the test swabs.  I am again certain this will show much less presence of viable virus among the vaxed group.
  5. Give us complete reinfection cases among the unvaccinated, including hospital and death rates.  Reinfections among the unvaxed are the equivalent of breakthrough infections in the vaxed and a direct comparison about rates and outcomes would be helpful.
  6. Stop hiding how many hospitalizations listed as CV-19 ones aren’t actually for CV-19.  The state of Minnesota started doing this for breakthrough infections but it should be done for all cases, so we can compare true serious outcomes.

Finally, come up with better and more accurate messaging on how respiratory virus vaccines should be expected to work.  Stop calling them breakthrough infections; the virus isn’t breaking through some physical barrier.  Give people at least a rudimentary explanation of how adaptive immunity works.  Explain that adaptive immunity is weaker in older persons and those with serious health issues, so we can expect to see cases and even serious illness continue among that group.  Once more, for the three millionth time, tell people this virus is not going away, we will live with it, we will adapt to it, we will have preventive and treatment measures that are effective, but it ain’t disappearing.  And life is too short and too valuable to waste it in futile attempts to avoid CV-19.

Source: Delta variant bullet points

John Hayward says what needs to be said about the Jan. 6 show trial

Here’s John Hayward’s Twitter thread, turned (verbatim) in the prose I find easier to read:

The 1/6 rioters should be treated with the same severity as Black Lives Matter rioters. Since that is not remotely possible, all else is political theater and raw exercises of power, and I am weary of pretenses to the contrary.

I’m weary of our ruling class sending the message that your home, business, and personal safety are at the mercy of violent Demcorat-approved grievance groups, but don’t you DARE do anything that makes the aristocracy in D.C. uncomfortable.

I’m tired of hearing the Abolish the Police Party demand limitless scrutiny and aggressive defunding of the police who protect the rest of us, but unquestioning support and increased funding for the police who protect THEM. Why not protect the Capitol with social workers, huh?

There are Democrat-controlled parts of the country where theft has literally been decriminalized, and not just during Democrat-approved riots. You have to stand and watch helplessly while your business is looted every day. But the rules are different for THEIR place of business.

The entire premise of the theatrical 1/6 hearings is supposedly that further “insurrections” are a serious threat that must be proactively addressed. That is FAR more true of Democrat-approved grievance riots. They were vastly larger, deadlier, and more likely to occur again.

No group that might contemplate barging into the Capitol was given billions of dollars in funding by politicized corporations, as BLM was. None of them enjoys anything like to [sic] the political and media support of the 2020 rioters, who even got a pass from coronavirus restrictions. Democrat-approved rioters were even given free passes from coronavirus restrictions.

Every rule on the books was bent and broken for them. Prosecution for their offenses has not been zero, but it hasn’t exactly been thorough. The message sure as hell isn’t “never do this again.”

The Democrat Party normalized and celebrated political violence for months before the Capitol riots. Let’s have some hearings on THAT. Let’s talk about how incredibly dangerous it is for one Party to think it has a monopoly on grievance-mongering, street theater, and violence.

Let’s also have some hearings about how one Party thinks it has a monopoly on questioning the outcome of elections. We could roll video of top Dems, including sitting officials, doing that for HOURS. You want theater? I’ll make the popcorn and bring the tapes.

I’m not really interested in hearing any Democrat, or their GOP footstools, give tearful speeches about sacred democracy while their party systematically destroys every bit of protection for our elections and wantonly undermines every outcome they don’t like. We have every reason to fear the full power of bloated, hyper-politicized government being turned against Americans who dissent from the ruling Party.

Show trials designed to establish the predicate that dissenters are potential violent terrorists are not exactly reassuring. There is no need to excuse or valorize anything that occurred on 1/6 to be disgusted by this week’s political spectacle. Our media tells us that “context” is everything. Well, in the full context of 2020, hysterics over 1/6 are absurd and hypocritical.

You can’t say THIS city is sacred ground, but THESE cities must be abandoned to mobs and criminals as lawless wastelands. Hell, most of D.C. outside the Capitol IS a lawless wasteland. You shrieking potentates can see murder factories through your barbed wire fences.

You can’t say THESE cops are sacred avatars of law and order whose actions merit no public scrutiny or investigation, but all the rest of them are trigger-happy racists who should be micromanaged, distrusted, disarmed, defunded, and replaced by community organizers.

You can’t say THIS politicized violence is totally unacceptable and should be prosecuted unto the end of time, but THESE people are allowed to use violence and vandalism whenever they feel the system is not addressing their grievances quickly enough.

You can’t tell me the 1st Amendment must be bypassed to silence “disinformation” because it might lead to “insurrection,” while embracing media outlets that spread Hands Up Don’t Shoot lies with wild abandon, resulting in real and immediate crime and violence.

When people who spent four years role-playing as “the Resistance” against a “stolen election” suddenly start telling us dissent and resistance are treason that will be punished without mercy, we know exactly what’s going on. It’s a grim story repeated throughout human history.

By all means, let’s have universal respect for universally RESPECTABLE elections. Let’s have zero tolerance for political violence. Let every American’s property be treated with the respect afforded to a congressman’s office. These hearings obviously aren’t about that. /end

Source: John Hayward says what needs to be said about the Jan. 6 show trial

Two CRT links

It’s been very hard to pin down just what Critical Race Theory actually is. A lot of the proposed definitions and descriptions seem to be formulated by people with axes to grind, and the rest seem flexible enough that they can be stretched to include or exclude anything desired. Trying to decide whether CRT is being taught (or used) in a school is like trying to nail Kool-Aid to a wall.

These may be useful toward a serious understanding.

First, William Galston writes,

Critical race theory is an explicitly left-wing movement inspired by the thinking of an Italian neo-Marxist, Antonio Gramsci. Against classic Marxism, for which material conditions are primary, Gramsci (1891-1937) focused on “hegemony”—the system of beliefs that “reinforces existing social arrangements and convinces the dominated classes that the existing order is inevitable,” as Ms. Crenshaw puts it.

Noteworthy because Galston is center-left. He is burning some bridges here.

Helen Pluckrose writes,

Rather than quibbling over whether what critics are criticising is really the theories that emerged in legal studies from the 1970s, let’s address the reality of what critical theories of race look like right now and how they are impacting real people of all races.

In much of the essay, Pluckrose really gets into the theoretical weeds, even though she points out that a different CRT has been popularized than what was created in academia. This reminds me of Keynesian economics in grad school, where there were all sorts of esoteric discussions of what Keynes really meant and what Keynesian economics ought to be. Meanwhile, what took hold in the press and in public policy is what I call “folk” Keynesianism, which is nothing more than “spending creates jobs, and jobs create spending.” The academic arguments matter only to the academics.

Similarly, I expect that academic discussions of critical race theory no longer affect “folk” critical race theory, or FCRT, if you will. FCRT is what K-12 teachers and journalists carry with them. I think it includes a belief in the moral inferiority of white males. It includes a belief that “privilege” is a very important concept. I think it includes some Puritan sensibilities, particularly an unforgiving stance regarding heretics. But these are tentative thoughts about FCRT. I do not feel confident that I have it pinned down yet.

Source: Two CRT links

January 6 Hearings Get Under Way

(John Hinderaker) The House Select Committee that purports to investigate the “insurrection” of January 6, 2021, started holding hearings today. I don’t intend to write much about this farce, as I think it is one of the dumbest things we have seen in many years. This is true for many reasons:

  • We Republicans may have our faults, but if we were actually going to stage an insurrection, at least one of us would remember to bring a firearm.
  • Along the same lines, if we were to undertake an insurrection, we would not call on a “shaman” wearing horns and a fur hat to lead it.
  • An actual insurrection would result in casualties. Here, the only person who died, or was seriously injured, other than by natural causes, was Ashli Babbitt. Will Pelosi’s committee call the officer who shot her as a witness? Inquiring minds want to know.
  • If the committee wants to investigate violent riots in Washington, D.C., it is barking up the wrong tree. There was a real riot on the day when Donald Trump was inaugurated in 2017, with businesses looted, buildings and vehicles burned, and innocent passers-by assaulted. Likewise, in July 2016 there was another real riot, in which (going from memory) around 60 D.C. police officers were wounded, and much property was destroyed. Do you suppose the Democrats are interested in investigating those riots?
  • There actually is one aspect of the January 6 protest that deserves investigation: the performance of Capitol security. The fact that a small rabble of unarmed protesters was able to access the Capitol illegally is, or should be, shocking. Moreover, we have all seen the video of the Capitol entrance where guards opened the doors and waved the protesters into the building. The protesters entered in an orderly fashion, taking photos with their cell phones and carefully staying between the red velvet ropes. I suspect that most of those who entered the Capitol on January 6 were invited in by guards. I have never seen an explanation of how and why this happened. Will the committee investigate this bizarre breakdown in security?

Just kidding.

  • The committee is proceeding without meaningful participations by the Republicans. To their everlasting shame, two alleged Republicans responded to Pelosi’s summons as collaborators. But no one on the committee will be a voice of sanity.
  • This committee reminds me of the Select Committee on Assassinations that House Democrats appointed, as I recall, some time during the 1970s. That committee, staffed by the usual suspects, purported to investigate the John Kennedy, Robert Kennedy and Martin Luther King assassinations. The committee wrote a report that concluded, if I remember correctly, that all three assassinations were fruits of conspiracies. If you don’t remember that bit of history, you are not alone. The committee’s report was generally viewed as an embarrassment and was quietly shelved. The current committee will, I think, be similarly forgotten.

On the bright side, I don’t believe the Democrats are fooling anyone. The current “investigation” is a joke, and I think everyone understands that. The New York Times et al. may pontificate about the “insurrection,” but the whole thing is a farce that will get the Dems nowhere.

It also is a reprise of the Dems’ unconstitutional–in my opinion–second impeachment of President Trump. That impeachment did nothing for the Dems, as far as I could see, and the current version is lamer, if only because of the lapse of time. If Joe Biden’s policies had not proved a comprehensive failure, the Democrats would not be trying to focus attention on an ex-president of the opposite party.

Source: January 6 Hearings Get Under Way

Trump must be extremely clean if this is all the NY prosecutors came up with

After years of prosecutors targeting Trump in search of a crime, Trump Organization CFO Allen Weisselberg “surrendered early Thursday to New York authorities for arraignment in the first criminal indictment arising from a two-year investigation into the former president’s company,” according to the AP.

The charges relate to paying perks for executives without showing those perks on their W-2 forms and paying income taxes and payroll taxes on those perks.

I bet the WaPo, NYT, and other media outlets will have trouble finding those charges against other corporations, so I am sure they will advocate for going after all corporations and entities for this crime because they always want equal treatment under the law, don’t they?

All corporations, including the WaPo and the NYT, should now be investigated to make sure that no executives ever get free stuff, like country club dues or special transportation, without paying income and payroll taxes.

Jewish Voice

Donald Trump must be extremely clean because, after years of targeted investigations by the IRS, the FBI, the media, Congress, and N.Y. prosecutors, this is all they could come up with.  That is clearly evidence that this was a witch hunt in search of a crime instead of an investigation because there was evidence of a crime.

The DNC and Hillary campaign committees were having so much trouble finding dirt on Trump that they had to pay a foreign national over $10 million to create a fictional dossier to destroy him.  The media and other Democrats even had to create the lies about Russian collusion in their efforts to take Trump out.  There was never one piece of evidence of Russian collusion, but since Trump’s low-tax, smaller-government policies were very popular and were lifting people of all races and all education levels up, he had to be destroyed.  After all, the media and other Democrats care about power, not great results, so they had to intentionally mislead the public.

The Reichstag fire and the Dems’ Hitlerian response to Jan. 6

Sometimes Godwin’s Law doesn’t apply.

Usually, Hitler comparisons to American politicians and political party’s are erroneous and overwrought. But sometimes they’re very accurate.

The way American Thinker is formatted, it happens on very rare occasions that excellent content gets rolled off the front page and, as far as most readers are concerned, effectively vanished. Such is the case with F. Charles Parker IV’s As long as we’re making World War II comparisons….

We should all try our best to avoid reductio ad Hitlerum because what’s happening in America almost never mirrors what happens in Hitler’s Germany. Trump, for example, was the opposite of Hitlerian, despite the left’s frantic efforts to make the comparison. Trump was incredibly philo-Semitic. Trump sought to shrink, not expand, government, which is the exact opposite of what a socialist leader (as Hitler was) would do. Trump encouraged private citizens to own guns, which is the opposite of what any tyrant would do. And Trump, rather than seeking world domination, believed that America should be less involved in the affairs of other countries. He was the un-Hitler.

However, sometimes the comparisons are so apt that you really can’t help but see connections. Since Biden has been in office, he’s collected anti-Semites into his orbit and shown real sympathy for those who seek Israel’s destruction. He’s been hellbent on expanding the government, including supporting economic policies that will destroy the middle class. He’s been open about his desire to disarm all citizens. So far, the only thing he hasn’t done is made a bid for world domination.

And then there’s January 6 — and this is where F. Charles Parker IV’s post comes in:

When the Reichstag burned, Hitler had become Chancellor, but Germany was terribly divided, and his authority was not secure. Because a demented Dutch communist was accused of setting the fire, Hitler manufactured what would be termed today an existential national crisis. The Nazis termed the fire a prelude to an uprising or insurrection. He arrested many communists and managed to get enacted emergency powers. A law titled the Enabling Act gave him new powers of suppression with authority to pass laws by executive order, without involving legislative bodies. Ultimately, he manipulated the existential crisis to suppress all opposition, including the communists and social democrats.

Source: The Reichstag fire and the Dems’ Hitlerian response to Jan. 6

Climate changes for the better?

Steven Hayward: We all know the Great Barrier Reef is in danger of disappearing because of c—— c—–. The climatistas tell us so, at every opportunity: Well guess what Mom? Check in with The Australian (behind a paywall so here is the relevant text—made available by the indispensable Global Warming Policy Foundation ): The annual data on coral cover for the Great Barrier Reef, produced by the Australian Institute of Marine Science, was released on Monday showing the amount of coral on the reef is at record high levels .

Source: Climate changes for the better?

Gaining depth on gain of function

(Scott Johnson)

Yesterday I posted “The fallacious Fauci strikes again.” My comments elicited a message from Michael S. Rogers, Assistant Professor of Surgery at Harvard Medical School and Research Associate in the Vascular Biology Program at Boston Children’s Hospital. I thought some readers might find it of interest. With his permission I am posting his message below the break.

 

Source: Gaining depth on gain of function