Discover more from ☕️ Coffee & Covid 2023 🦠
☕️ Coffee & Covid ☙ Wednesday, January 19, 2022 ☙ SIGNALS OF THE END 🦠
A January 6 Committee primer; more Narrative 2.0 news; a quick CMS update; and Florida gets its mojo, I mean monoclonal treatments, back.
Happy Hump-Day, C&C! Today’s roundup features a January 6 Committee primer; more Narrative 2.0 news; a quick CMS update; and Florida gets its monoclonal treatments back.
🗞 *THE C&C ARMY POST* 🗞
🔊 I’m speaking in DC this Sunday, January 23, at the March for Freedom rally featuring Lara Logan, Robert Kennedy, Jr. , Peter McCullough, Ryan Cole, Paul Alexander, Elvis, and many others (https://defeatthemandatesdc.com/speakers/). Well okay, not Elvis. As far as I know. And Michelle got me a huge pack of hot hands and hot feet. Hopefully that will be enough. Hopefully.
(Oh — I figured out why I accidentally flipped Kennedys yesterday. Last weekend I watched Oliver Stone’s new JFK assassination documentary to brush up on my conspiracy theories. So JFK’s ghost made an appearance in my subconscious.)
🪖 As we lawyers wait for the First DCA to issue its opinion, hoping there’ll be something useful in it, Dan Pisano’s condition is cautiously improving. The family hopes he can be stablized to the point he can be removed from Mayo. Everyone’s prayers are much appreciated.
🪖 WRITING TEAM: How’re those letters coming along? Be sure to link any published letters in the comments of the assignment post (https://tinyurl.com/ywkf8d3m). Even if your letter isn’t published, go ahead and post the text in the comments, so we can give you feedback to help you with the next assignment.
🗞*COVID NEWS AND COMMENTARY* 🗞
🔥 Yesterday, the hardworking January 6 Committee subpoena’d three lawyers plus a Trump campaign advisor: Rudy Giuliani, Jenna Ellis, Sidney Powell, and Boris Epshteyn. (Epshteyn was a special assistant or advisor to President Trump or something; reports vary.) This new set of subpoenas, coming on the heels of the previous day’s set directed to social media companies, highlights the Democrat election strategy and the problems with Congressional investigative powers.
First, the subpoenas to Giuliani, Ellis, and Powell, are particularly problematic because they intrude on or impair the attorney-client privilege and traditional notions of confidentiality between a client and an attorney working on the client’s matter. The Committee’s twitter feed explains why it’s so critical to get these lawyers’ documents:
The four individuals advanced unsupported theories about election fraud, pushed efforts to overturn election results, or were in direct contact with the former President.
Oh, unsupported theories. Well okay then. We can’t have that. Except … isn’t a theory something unsupported by definition? I mean, when it’s supported, it’s not a theory anymore, right? So confusing. Science is getting hard to keep up with.
So it’s time to look a little closer at what the Committee is up to. They have now subpoena’d thousands of people and interviewed hundreds more. Why? According to the enabling resolution, HR 503, its purpose is to investigate and report on the January 6 riot at the Capitol and make recommendations to Congress, such as how to improve security and stuff. Which makes sense, I guess. But the investigation is MUCH broader than that.
The discovery powers provided to House investigations by law is extremely broad. And there isn’t much case law about it, because usually the House restrains itself and does not generate volumes of litigation which lead to cases and opinions by judges. But what little law there is suggests that there are few limits to the scope of inquiry and there are very few defenses to responding. Over the years, courts have repeatedly stated that they want to stay out of the legislative branch’s business, and they give House investigations great deference.
For one illustrative example of how powerful these investigatory tools are: if a person wants to object to a House subpoena, say on Fifth Amendment Constitutional grounds or something, then their objection will be ruled on — not by a Court — but by … the chair of the same House committee that issued the subpoena. And there’s no clear right of appeal once the chair denies the objections. The objecting person has to wait to be found in contempt, and only then has to quickly move for a writ of habeas corpus asserting their constitutional rights. And, they can only do that in the DC Circuit, which is the House’s home town.
Those nearly-unlimited are in sharp contrast to the libraries of law and container-loads of court oversight of CRIMINAL investigative powers, as wielded by the Executive branch — everything from local police to the FBI or the DOJ. There are tons of laws, tons of defenses, tons of case law, and tons of court procedures available to challenge overbroad, invasive, or irrelevant discovery requests by police. You have clear Constitutional rights and simple ways to assert them. Law enforcement can’t just have whatever it wants; it must first show probable cause.
Not so for the Committee. And the January 6 Committee has only 2 Republicans on it — one of them is never-Trumper Liz Cheney, who was kicked out of her state’s Republican Party. So, with a huge and critically-important election season bearing down on us, the potential for over-politicized investigations is at its historic peak.
So here’s what I think is going on.
I think the House Democrats are using the vast, unbounded, and nearly impossible-to-resist legislative investigatory powers of a House committee to gather evidence that NEVER could have been gathered through law enforcement. Never ever. They are building a huge database that will provide generations of odious opposition research into political opponents and — I predict — a massive wave of jumped-up, overhyped criminal prosecutions of conservative leaders, advisors, speakers, activists, donors, and even Republican political candidates. Just in time for the 2022 election cycle.
I hope I’m wrong. I’ve asked a bunch of DC lawyers, and most of them just shrug it off, saying, yes, it’s possible, they COULD do that, but they never WOULD. Because restraint. But I am still concerned because HR 503, the resolution that created the Committee, repeatedly refers to the events of January 6 as “the domestic terrorist attack on the Capitol.” Here’s a link to my copy of HR 503: https://tinyurl.com/9w49a5vf. I am puzzled why the House would describe it that way unless there were some domestic terrorists someplace. And if there ARE domestic terrorists hiding under Nancy Pelosi’s bed, they need some prosecution, or SOMETHING, don’t you think?
The Committee will soon be in a position to turn over massive amounts of “evidence” to DOJ prosecutors — prosecutors supervised by that icon of un-restraint, Merrick Garland — that the Committee has gathered using the broadest discovery powers anywhere, powers that are broad because they are supposed to be reserved for lawmaking activity, powers that Garland’s DOJ lacks.
Since I’m running long, tomorrow I will explain how this January 6 Committee is most historically similar to the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) in the 1950’s and 60’s, and what that suggests we can expect going forward.
🔥 A new Rasmussen poll (from late December) found that 79% of Republicans, 58% of unaffiliated voters, and even 41% of Democrats believe it is at least somewhat likely that cheating affected the 2020 election. The 58% of “unaffiliated” voters who think there was likely to have been cheating in the election is going UP — now +4% higher than the last time Rasmussen took the poll.
Rasmussen also asked whether those surveyed thought that the hundreds of millions of dollars Mark Zuckerberg spent on the election was “good for democracy.” Only EIGHT PERCENT (8%) agreed.
Just saying what Rasmussen found. Don’t cancel me.
🔥 Fomer FDA Commissioner and brand-new Pfizer executive Scott Gottlieb is, apparently, on board for Narrative 2.0. The UK Daily Mail ran an article yesterday headlined, “‘This signals the end of the pandemic’: Ex-FDA chief Scott Gottlieb contradicts Fauci and says ‘dramatically different’ virus strain is unlikely after Omicron as cases drop 10% - the first week-over-week decline since the New Year.”
The article is jam-packed with good news. It’s a Covid miracle! The Mail says that reported deaths are “only up 7% this week, down from the 20% increase recorded last Monday.” Under Narrative 1.0, this would have been reported as “deaths continue to rise.” Thanks Narrative 2.0!
The Mail notes that “state-by-state data shows that cases have generally begun to plateau or even level-off in states that were hit hardest early on by the Omicron variant.” Great news. Remember all the reports of plateaus as previous waves leveled off? Me neither.
Curiously, Tiny Tim, I mean Fauci, doesn’t seem to have gotten the memo. According to the Mail, at a recent Davos conference (of course) the rambling old puppy-torturer encouraged people to stay worried: “The worrisome scenario is that you get something that’s divergent evolution like Omicron did. Something that’s dramatically different than the variants that are circulating right now.” He warned that there is a “potential” for a new strain of Covid that can evade natural immunity, putting the world even FARTHER away from the endemic stage. Scary.
But Gottlieb disagrees. “We’ve never seen a coronavirus undergo shift, where you’ve seen a dramatic change in the virus itself and the strain of the virus. What you’ve seen is these viruses undergo drift,” he said. And the Mail says — as straight news — that Omicron is burning through people so fast that it could soon run out of people to infect. It’s almost over!
🇬🇧 Even Great Britain seems to be getting on board for the new Narrative. The Guardian UK reported yesterday that “All Covid restrictions in England could end in March under No 10 plans.” In March! Just in time for the State of the Union here in the U.S. It explains that Boris Johnson said he is now “prepared to let the UK live with the virus.”
How times change. Rapidly.
A senior source in the British government confirmed that it is looking at ending mandatory self-isolation for positive Covid cases, saying it would be “perverse” to keep the measure in the long term. Perverse! One step away from perverted. The British government also said that work from home and injection passports will soon be wrapped up and shelved, maybe as soon as January 26.
The UK’s health secretary Savid Javid said he is “cautiously optimistic” that remaining Covid regulations in England can be “substantially reduced” starting NEXT WEEK.
Honestly, people, I am having trouble keeping up with all the Narrative 2.0 news.
🔥 Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon announced yesterday that all the new Covid restrictions imposed for the Omicron wave will be lifted starting NEXT MONDAY. You didn’t think these Covid restrictions could possibly be lifted that fast, did you? It’s simply amazing what a new Narrative can do, isn’t it?
All the news is good! According to MSN News, the First Minister said she was “confident we have turned a corner on the Omicron wave” in Scotland. Confident! Not worried, not anymore. “We are now on the downward slope of cases,” she happily informed the Scottish parliament.
And … we have the government to thank for this delightful turn of events: “A combination of booster vaccinations, the willingness of the public to adapt their behaviour to help stem transmission, and the temporary protective measures introduced in December, have helped blunt the impact of the Omicron wave,” Sturgeon explained cheerfully.
Thank goodness for all those mandates. Florida had no comment.
👩⚕️ I’ve been waiting, but I have not yet seen any widespread re-activation of the CMS mandates in hospitals. Anecdotal reports suggest that religious exemptions are now being approved at an accelerated pace, and that the Biden-controlled EEOC is actually being responsive and starting to pursue cases of exemption denials. Nor has CMS itself said anything about the mandates since before Christmas. It would sure be inconvenient timing to start laying off docs and nurses, what with the rollout of Narrative 2.0 and all the Omicron hospitalizations. I remain cautiously optimistic.
🔥 Just in time for Spring, the Federal Government has released the previously-confiscated supplies of monoclonal antibody treatments, and yesterday the State of Florida announced opening a bunch of new treatment sites that had been shut down due to lack of supply. So monoclonal treatments for Covid infection are now available once again to Floridians with a positive Covid test.
Have a wonderfully wacky Wednesday and we’ll see what the news brings us in tomorrow’s roundup in the morning.
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