☕️ Coffee & Covid ☙ Wednesday, February 9, 2022 ☙ A WILD PIVOT 🦠
HB 7021; the framework of the State of the Union; Leanna Wen pivots, hard; cruise lines drop mandates; the NYT questions masks; and more...
Good morning, C&C! It’s Wednesday, and the Narrative 2.0 continues to unfold in real time. What a show! Pro-lockdown folks on twitter are getting whiplashed, they can’t understand what is happening. In today’s roundup: an HB 7021 update; a key congressman lays out the framework of the SOTU; Leanna Wen pivots harder than anybody; corporate media gets the message; a cruise line drops a mandate; the NYT questions mask efficacy; one-way-masks are a thing; and more.
🗞 *THE C&C ARMY POST* 🗞
🪖 Yesterday I informed the C&C family about a bill on the verge of passing into law, HB 7021.
UPDATE: It’s still, or back, on. Will keep you posted.
💐 It’s the lovely Michelle’s birthday today! She’s twenty-nine again. So I’ll be moving fast, lots of birthday stuff to take care of.
🗞*COVID NEWS AND COMMENTARY* 🗞
🔥 Representative Hakeem Jeffries (D. N.Y.) previewed what the State of the Union is going to look like. In a video press conference yesterday, Jeffries was asked about all the states dropping their precious mask mandates, and he gave JOE BIDEN all the credit: “[The mandates are dropping] because under President Biden’s leadership, a public health infrastructure was put into place … to ensure that we can do everything possible to crush the virus, and that is what has been happening.”
This is the clearest evidence yet that I’m right. Biden is owning the dropping mandates. Jeffries wouldn’t say this stuff without permission, or rather, direction. He provided what can only be described as a preview of the case that Biden is going to make on March 1st.
Jeffries laid it all out in its wonderful, glittering Narrative 2.0 glory:
Here’s where we are in America. Job creation is up, wages are up, unemployment is down, and the Omicron variant is in retreat. And that’s not by accident. A public health infrastructure was put into place, beginning with the American rescue plan, without a single Republican vote, to ensure that we can do everything possible to crush the virus. And that is what has been happening. Through the trials and tribulations of a once-in-a-century pandemic, through the Delta variant, now through the Omicron variant. When Biden took office there were 2 million Americans fully vaccinated. One year later more than 200 million Americans are fully vaccinated. That doesn’t happen by accident. Because Biden and Democrats in the House and the Senate have leaned into the science, to the evidence, to standing up a robust public health infrastructure, we are now seeing the fruits of that work.
There you have it! It didn’t happen by accident. Now you know who to thank for shutting down the virus. Joe Biden plus the House and the Senate Democrats. Because science. So vote for them, or something.
This is a significant statement. Jeffries is chair of the House Democratic Caucus, and is the fifth highest-ranking Democrat in the House. Jeffries was one of seven House Impeachment Managers in President Trump’s Senate trial. He is a reliable Democrat party operative.
Jeffries’ statement quoted above lays out the whole positioning strategy for Democrats heading into the 2022 election cycle. The only thing left for Joe Biden to do is declare victory and order the federal agencies to stand down. If you think about it, Biden WILL have actually “shut down the virus,” if you think of “the virus” as a massive federal anti-freedom program. “Shut down” was always an awkward phrase. You can shut down a killer robot from the future, or an out-of-control teenage house party, but not a microorganism. You can “kill” or “disinfect” a microorganism, but not shut it down. Not really.
But you CAN shut down a gargantuan federal boondoggle of a pandemic response by turning all the measurement dials back to zero. If you don’t measure a pandemic, it isn’t actually happening. It’s shut down.
So get ready. Do NOT be frustrated. That will be tempting and justified, but would be the wrong take. I modestly suggest taking the win and building on it. Be quietly angry, happy warriors.
And what were you expecting anyways? Apologies?
🔥 No one is pivoting harder than CNN’s TV-doctor and former Planned Parenthood president Leanna Wen. In a segment on all the mask mandate terminations announced yesterday, Wen was asked if she agreed with the moves. She confidently said yes:
I do. There was and is a time and place for pandemic restrictions, but when they were put in, it was always with the understanding that they would be removed as soon as we can. And in this case, circumstances have changed. Case counts are declining. Also the science has changed! We know that vaccines protect very well against Omicron, which is the dominant variant. Everyone five and older has widespread access to vaccines. And we also know about ‘one-way-masking,’ the idea that, even if other people around you aren’t wearing masks, if you wear a high-quality mask, that also protects you, the wearer, too. In this case, I’m not saying — no one is saying — that no one should wear masks, but rather that the responsibility should shift from a government mandate, imposed from the state or district of a school, rather it should shift to an individual responsibility by the family, who can still decide that their child can wear a mask if needed.
One-way-masking. That’s the lifeline they are planning to offer the die-hard maskers. Just mask yourself. Like WE have been saying for two years. But they’ve minted an awkward new term for it.
The CNN reporter next pretended to challenge Wen, asking about dropping mask mandates at a time when there are still high case numbers in New Jersey. “Um, is that an acceptable number?” he asked. You’re not going to believe what Wen said:
I don’t think we should be looking at case counts at all at this point. Especially when we’re dealing with a milder variant, and when so many people were exposed to Omicron at this point, and therefore have at least some level of protection either through vaccination or immunity.
So what does Wen suddenly think we should be focusing on instead of cases? Improved hospitalization numbers:
The key number that we should be looking at is hospitalizations. If our ICUs and our hospitals in that particular region are not overwhelmed, if they are not over capacity .. then we should be able to relax all restrictions. And I actually believe that the first restriction removed should actually be the restrictions on children.
Aha! School mask mandates should be FIRST! You want to thank someone for ending the pandemic? Thank the moms groups.
Wen’s little talk was so common sense, so matter of fact, so straightforward, that I thought for a second that Wen is now on Team Reality. Now we know why they have a new task force pressuring the hospitals to make their Covid numbers “more accurate.” Because hospitalizations are going the be the pivot point. In other words, we don’t need to do all this testing and contact tracing anymore! Just watch the hospitals. If they aren’t overwhelmed, then we’re all good.
But … the hospitals have NEVER been overwhelmed. After I cleaned up my bleeding ears, I reflected on the fact that Team Reality has been beating the not-overwhelmed-hospital drum since day one.
🔥 Big Media is getting Wen’s message! The Washington Post published her op-ed yesterday, in an article titled, “Opinion: In This Next Phase Of The Pandemic, Beware Of The Extremes.” In the article, Wen pushes back on criticism from both sides about dropping mandates:
These sensible actions have been met with anger, derision and opposition from both sides. Some claim that these actions are proof that mandates were never needed and question the effectiveness of masking, vaccination and other evidence-based mitigation measures. Others offer no reasonable endpoint for restrictions and make continued masking a symbol of their belief in science.
Both extremes are wrong. Public health policy is nuanced and complex, and the sooner we acknowledge this, the quicker we can move from polarizing rhetoric to reasonable compromises that allow us to live with Covid-19.
The science is NUANCED and COMPLEX, dummies. Leave this to the experts. Just trust them. It doesn’t matter if it doesn’t make sense to you. Wen explained, “I think it’s possible to hold two seemingly contradictory things to be true.” Paging George Orwell.
Did you notice the slam on die-hard maskers? They are making the masks “a symbol of their belief in science.” She’s hinting that those people are about to be stranded on an island and made fun of.
Next, Wen admitted something I’ve spent two years trying to convince judges of — masks cause some harms: “Masks, after all, are a type of medical intervention, and nearly every intervention carries risks and benefits. Sound policies require constant reevaluation of these trade-offs.”
My gosh! If only I could’ve had Leanna Wen as an expert witness! To the courageous judges who agreed with me that masks were harmful: see, you were right. Your decisions have been vindicated.
🔥 The New York Times has arrived at the Narrative 2.0 party. An article in that paper yesterday was headlined, “The Mask Debate — More Democratic Governors Are Saying That Masks Can Come Off In Schools.” The reporter, speaking from personal experience, recounted an experience of trying to talk to a friend, both masked, and not being able to hear each other.
Reflecting on the experience, he admitted the SAME THING Wen did, that masks aren’t completely safe:
It was not a big deal, but it reminded me that masks have both benefits and costs… If you scroll through social media, you will find no shortage of people proclaiming that mask wearing is easy FOR THEM. I don’t doubt it. But it is not so easy for many other people, including young children, people with learning disabilities and people who are hard of hearing.
And then he showed the rusty old iron fist inside the comfy velvet glove. Democrat holdouts better get on board the Narrative 2.0 express, or else: “The poll found that many Democrats, especially younger Democrats, seem to be overstating their personal risk from Covid.” Uh-oh. He was hinting they’re crazy.
The reporter cited — again, where were these people when I was litigating the masks? — mask studies! Studies that show MASKS DON’T WORK: “The benefits of universal masking in schools remain unclear. Studies — in Florida and in England , for example — tend to find little effect on caseloads. One study that did find an effect has been largely debunked.”
Can you believe this was actually published in the NEW YORK TIMES? He continued:
Other experts believe that the universal mask mandates are almost worthless. Among the reasons: Medical masks are designed for adults, not children, Michael Osterholm, a University of Minnesota epidemiologist, notes. Even masks designed for children slip off their faces. Children take off their masks to eat. Add in Omicron’s intense contagiousness, and the benefits of the current mandates may be tiny.
Insert a picture of my shocked face here. Ten minutes ago it was practically ILLEGAL to question the benefits of masking. In fact, on social media, questioning masks was EXPLICITLY a reason to get jailed. You couldn’t have shared this article last week. Well. I’m doing it now, and this post isn’t in jail, is it? How times suddenly change. Or pivot, or whatever.
🔥 I’d like to speak just for a moment to a handful of die-hard C&C haters who’ve been stealthily following my daily posts to try to debunk me for two years now, despite being repeatedly blocked for obnoxious comments. See? I was right, you knuckleheads. Go stalk the New York Times if you don’t like it. So! Or something!
🔥 Proof of vaccination or negative test requirements will end Monday, and mask mandates will end on February 28 — right on time — in Saskatchewan, Canada, Premier Scott Moe announced yesterday.
🔥 After suing the state of Florida to keep their obnoxious vaccine passport, Norwegian Cruise lines has now … dropped their mask mandate! Starting March 1 — the date of the you-know-what — you can cruise without being forced to wear a dirty face rag. “The decision to wear a mask covering when onboard is at the discretion of each guest,” Norwegian announced. Since I’m betting the CDC is going to drop all cruise restrictions on March 1, cruise bookings will pick up and stocks should finally start recovering.
🔥 Narrative 2.0 is going to disappoint a lot of newly unhappy lockdowners. They will be squawking like angry chickens in an undersized coop. But it won’t make any difference. They’ll be minced into ground chicken patties by the same psyops strategies to which they are themselves intensely vulnerable. People who try to cling to Narrative 1.0 are about to experience the full weight of social shaming, which they love to dish out, but fear more than anything. They haplessly think they are due some credit for being loyal party members during the pandemic, but they are about to be extremely disappointed. It won’t count for anything. Fun times.
Have a wonderful Wednesday! I’ll see ya’ll back here tomorrow.
You can help get the truth out and spread optimism and hope: https://www.coffeeandcovid.com/p/-learn-how-to-get-involved-