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☕️ Coffee & Covid ☙ Thursday, September 16, 2021 ☙ Pudgy Clowns 🦠
Today’s roundup includes trouble on the horizon for Biden’s national vaccine mandate, the federal government throttles Florida’s monoclonal antibody supply...
Happy Thursday, C&Cers. I hope everyone is having a great week. Today’s roundup includes trouble on the horizon for Biden’s national vaccine mandate, the federal government throttles Florida’s monoclonal antibody supply, more confusion at the CDC over natural immunity, Texas hospitals warn of vaccine mandate closures, and I pen a letter with a humble request to the scientific / medical establishment.
🗞*COVID NEWS AND COMMENTARY* 🗞
🔥 Hear that distant rumbling noise? That’s the sound of the national vaccine mandate starting to collapse like the demolition of empty apartment buildings in China. Apparently — and nobody in the present Administration could see this coming — it’s not a good idea to make up huge controversial new programs and bureaucracies to paper over some bad weekend poll ratings about your Afghanistan exit, not without thinking it through, anyway.
Politico ran a story headlined, “*Biden’s workplace vaccine mandate faces headwinds*.” Headwinds! These guys crack me up. Here’s the subhead: “The potential for legal challenges, union contract disputes and the logistical hurdles underscore the difficulty for the administration to quickly implement a sweeping mandate.”
Hahaha! That’s a masterpiece of passive voice! As a writer I give Politico a standing ovation for burying the real problems under several layers of foggy doublespeak. Here’s how I would rewrite the subhead for them: “The White House’s inability to plan and think critically is on high-profile display again, as Biden’s national vaccine mandate begins to face inevitable legal challenges, union disputes, and an agency inadequate to handle the job.”
The Daily Wire was a little more direct than Politico, and published a story headlined, “Biden Vax Mandate In ‘Chaos’: OSHA ‘Underfunded’ And ‘Toothless,’ Employers Worried About ‘Millions Of Dollars’ In Testing Costs.” That’s a little more like it.
Politico reported that even employers who favor a vaccine mandate are balking at the testing requirement, which could cost millions per year in direct and indirect costs like time off to get tested, and related lost productivity.
“I think this redefines ‘ideas are simple, execution is hard,’” said business attorney Michael Lotito, quoted for the Politico article. “What we have right now is chaos,” Lotito added, “because of the unintended consequences of making such an announcement where there is no clarity with respect to a gargantuan number of questions that have been left open.”
Questions “left open?” You mean, the thing that happens when you don’t think your big proposal through AHEAD OF TIME and don’t have a well-thought-out and carefully drawn plan? As opposed to playing Keystone Cops or whatever you want to call it. It’s almost like all Biden cares about is the political effect of announcing the mandate rather than actually getting it done, or something.
What does “incompetent” mean?
But don’t worry. It’s President Trump’s fault! Business Insider published its own story about the national mandate chaos, headlined “*Enforcing Biden’s workplace vaccine-or-test mandate falls to a ‘toothless’ federal agency that Trump gutted, experts say*.” Well, if it’s true President Trump gutted OSHA, I’d like to shake his hand. Toothless is just what we want, right at the moment.
Here’s my prediction. The Department of Labor, under intense pressure, is going to rush the drafting of the rule, which will be assigned to a bunch of connected partisan political appointees instead of some thoughtful and competent people. And so it’s going to be a complete mess, a highway pileup of unintended consequences, and will fuel limitless fodder for lawsuits. I could be wrong. But I’d be super surprised if I were.
💊 Just yesterday we were talking about effective and efficient government, remember? Or the opposite of that, I can’t remember. Well, after Governor DeSantis opened 25 clinics across the state providing Regeneron’s antibody cocktail at no cost to patients, and the state’s Covid figures began plummeting, the federal government cut Florida’s allocation of the drug in half. Florida’s state clinics and private providers have been placing about 72,000 weekly orders for doses of the safe and effective treatment. But federal HHS officials unexpectedly reset Florida’s supply of monoclonal antibody treatments yesterday, arbitrarily reducing it to only 30,950 weekly doses.
“We didn’t get any notice or time to prepare for this — neither did any providers in Florida,” DeSantis’ spokesperson Christina Pushaw said. “We were blindsided by this and the deficit is pretty significant, but it is the governor’s priority to make sure we fill that gap.”
Under a new agreement announced yesterday, Regeneron will supply an additional 1.4 million doses of its drug to the U.S. government by January 31, 2022. For comparison, the federal government has purchased over a trillion doses of vaccine for its 350 million citizens.
I have a question. In May, Scientific American published an article headlined, “*Why Monoclonal Antibody COVID Therapies Have Not Lived Up to Expectations*.” Well, says you. Anyway, the article reported that the U.S. had already purchased 500,000 doses of the monoclonal treatments. It goes on to say that — by May 2021 — demand had been “weaker than projected.” Obviously most of the drugs hadn’t been used. So, where are those doses?
Are they still at the airport? Parked behind the Louisiana Superdome? In the bus lot? Let’s track them down and then we’ll take them here in Florida if nobody else wants them.
🔥 Yesterday I posted some example articles from over the months about “CDC Confusion.” I thought we were past all that and the CDC was back on course. But, it only took one day. Here we go again!
Yesterday, Fox published an article headlined, “*Dr Makary: CDC guidance on Chickenpox vaccine exposes agency’s contradictory COVID messaging*.” Dr. Marty Macary, a Johns Hopkins professor, criticized the agency, noting how differently the CDC was treating Covid compared to chickenpox, which is a much more infectious and dangerous disease than Covid-19.
It seems that the CDC’s website says this about chickenpox: “CDC recommends two doses of chickenpox vaccine for children, adolescents, and adults who have never had chickenpox.”
Adults who have NEVER HAD chickenpox.
“So why doesn’t CDC say the same thing about those of us who already had COVID?” Fox’s Clay Travis asked Makary. The doctor called the conflicting guidance “absolutely illogical,” and accused the agency of “ignoring natural immunity. It doesn’t make sense with what they’re putting out on Chickenpox,” he said.
Absolutely illogical. It doesn’t make sense. It’s so … confusing!
🧑⚕️ According to an article yesterday in the Epoch Times, Texas’ Brownfield Regional Medical Center’s CEO Jerry Jasper said that “probably 20 to 25 percent of my staff will have to go away if” Biden’s vaccine mandate survives legal challenges. Losing those workers, Jaspar said, would likely cause his hospital to shut down. If he defied the mandate, he’d get shut down by withheld Medicare reimbursements. Catch-22.
It’s almost like they’re TRYING to collapse the medical system. It’s especially weird because this whole thing was originally premised on SUPPORTING the medical system. You remember. Flatten the curve and all that. So if it isn’t really about protecting the medical system, what is it really about?
🔥 I’ve been thinking about all this. There must be a huge bastion of remaining competence in the medical/scientific community that is quietly watching what is going on in stunned horror. They’re silent because they don’t want to lose their jobs or be looked at harshly or not invited to cocktail parties or something. But they might want to think hard about getting involved at this point, because the clowns at the top are about to collapse whatever slender reed of public respect and trust for the “establishment” remains.
So I wrote them a letter! Here it is:
Dear Scientific / Medical Establishment,
How are you? I trust you are well, and busy. I am writing you today to discuss a very urgent matter. First, imagine one of those over-tall parade unicycles. That unicycle represents the credibility and public respect for your industry. Now imagine a morbidly obese clown perched on the top of the public respect unicycle. On the back of the clown’s orange and green striped jumpsuit are the large black letters “CDC.” Underneath its crazy orange hair wig, its face resembles Anthony Fauci, except with a bulbous red clown nose. Imagine that corpulent clown riding the public respect unicycle around in circles in a Wal-Mart parking lot.
Now visualize a lot of money streaming into the clown’s mouth, right out of the air, like a dense flock of bats pouring down into a tunnel at sunrise. The more money that goes down the clown’s mouth, the fatter he gets. Meanwhile he is pedaling and pedaling, riding around in a big circle, as the tire sinks flatter and flatter under all the weight, and the unicycle’s frame starts to groan and creak under the pressure.
That’s where your industry is right now. The public respect unicycle is at the breaking point. The question is, are you going to wait for the two-ton clown to snap the unicycle’s frame and crush you all underneath his grotesquely flaccid, rubbery body? Or are you going to wake up and start calling out the bad science and the bad scientists and the politicians pretending to be scientists? It has to start with YOU. You, individually. Because if that clown comes down, you may not want that job much longer anyways.
Best regards, your humble servant, etc, etc, and so forth,
Jeff Childers, Esq.
Feel free to adapt my letter to your own purposes and send it along to anyone you think might benefit from the sentiments expressed therein, or something.
📊 *COVID IN FLORIDA AND ALACHUA COUNTY* 📊
The South Florida Sun Sentinel ran a dumb story claiming that Florida nursing homes have the nation’s highest death rate. Okay, well, setting aside the fact that we have the oldest (surviving) nursing home community, the Sentinel omitted the fact that in July 2020, resident deaths averaged 4.6 per thousand per week. Today it’s only 1.0 for the most recent week. So.
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