Kevin Roche: On the Moronic variant [with comment by Paul]

Featured image Listening to President Biden’s monomaniacal remarks on the Omicron variant, I found it hard not to conclude we are stuck inside an Escher lithograph. I commented on Biden’s primary theme of vaccination, but testing is also part of the loop. It isn’t only my friend Kevin Roche who finds the emphasis on PCR testing in particular misguided. Scott Atlas also writes about “the role and pitfalls of PCR testing and »

So far, Omicron doesn’t seem as lethal as its worst predecessors

Featured image The bad news about the Omicron variant is that it’s spreading quite rapidly in South Africa and has already appeared in other countries, including the U.S. In South Africa, new reported cases of the coronavirus have spiked from about 250 per day a month ago, to about 2,500 per day a week ago, to 11,500 yesterday. In three days, new coronavirus cases have nearly tripled, due to the emergence of »

Aussies Gone Mad [Updated]

Featured image I used to think that Australians are a freedom-loving people, but that has turned out not to be true. Crocodile Dundee is dead; Pajama Boy now rules. For many months, Australia has labored under one of the world’s most extreme, and most destructive, shutdown regimes. Its national and state governments have pursued the irrational dream of banning a virus from their shores. Good luck with that: it isn’t going to »

Biden’s Covid-19 winter plan

Featured image Yesterday President Biden went out to the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda to deliver “Remarks by President Biden on the COVID-⁠19 Winter Plan.” He spoke in the animatronic style to which we have grown accustomed, with the occasional short circuits and misfires included. He opened with a haywire attempt at humor: I’ve seen more — (laughs) — of Dr. Fauci than my wife. We kid each other, but — »

Biden’s pandemic history

Featured image In his November 29 Best of the Web column “Biden’s partisan pandemic history,” the Wall Street Journal’s James Freeman took up President Biden’s remarks the previous day on the Omicron variant (transcript here). Biden’s remarks implicitly trashed President Trump’s handling of the epidemic in a characteristically ungracious, ungrateful, and dishonest manner. I call it “The Biden variant.” Freeman writes in a more dispassionate spirit (links omitted): At Monday’s [White House »

The Trump and Biden covid scorecards, another look

Featured image Last week, I wrote a post called “Biden’s covid scorecard is worse than Trump’s.” I caveated it by saying that presidents should not be judged based, without more, on how many Americans die during a pandemic. However, I also noted that Joe Biden based much of his case for the presidency on precisely this criterion. Employing it, I found that the U.S. has lost ground to the four major European »

The Biden variant

Featured image President Biden gave two sets of remarks yesterday. First he appeared at the crack of noon to deliver “Remarks by President Biden Providing an Update on the Omicron Variant.” Then he appeared two hours later to deliver “Remarks by President Biden During Meeting with CEOs of Companies to Discuss the Holiday Shopping Season and His Administration’s Work to Move Goods to Shelves.” Good title! I take it that the minders »

Mr. Science balks

Featured image For a long time, I sympathized with Dr. Anthony Fauci. There he was, trying to deal with a pandemic caused by a virus no one knew much about. Sure, he was often wrong about pandemic-related matters, but so were plenty of others, on both sides of the political spectrum and in between, who opined on these subjects. Everyone was shooting in the dark. But at some point — possibly because »

Judge halts vaccine mandate for health workers in ten states

Featured image A Missouri federal judge, Matthew Schelp, has just issued an order temporarily blocking the Biden administration’s coronavirus vaccine mandate for health care workers in ten states. The states are Alaska, Arkansas, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming. These are the states whose attorneys general filed the lawsuit in question. The mandate is now blocked in these states while litigation on the merits of the »

Biden’s empty words about dealing with the new variant

Featured image Today, Joe Biden told reporters that lockdowns are “off the table for now” as a response to the new coronavirus variant. I consider this statement incoherent. To me, “off the table” means “ain’t gonna happen.” Lockdowns cannot be “off the table” if Biden is leaving open their possibility later on. Biden’s statement reflects the fact that lockdowns are no longer popular, not any principled unwillingness to impose them. But even »

How worrying is the new coronavirus variant?

Featured image I don’t think we know yet. But England’s chief medical officer, Prof. Chris Whitty, says we shouldn’t be too worried. (Unless otherwise indicated, his views and the others set forth below are reported by Laura Donnelly of The Telegraph.) Whitty agrees with banning travel from the African regions where the new variant is prevalent. He considers this a reasonable precaution. However, Whitty is more worried about the Delta variant, which »

Biden’s covid scorecard is worse than Trump’s

Featured image Joe Biden has ordered a ban on travel from eight African countries due to the emergence of the latest coronavirus variant. The countries from which Biden is cutting off travel are South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Lesotho, Eswatini, Mozambique and Malawi. When Donald Trump banned travel from China in the early days of the Wuhan coronavirus outbreak, Biden called the move xenophobic. I suppose that makes Biden’s travel ban racist »

Xi Who Must Be Obeyed?

Featured image I hadn’t been following the succession of COVID variations, which the World Health Organization (WHO?) has been labeling in the sequential order of the Greek alphabet. So the last iteration before yesterday’s news was the “Nu” variant. So next in line should be the “Xi” variant. But no!—We have skipped over the Xi variant for some reason right to the Marvel Superhero “Omicron” variant. (Isn’t “Omnicron” a superhero character in »

Oh Joy! Another Covid Variant

Featured image Dow futures plunged more than 800 points last night. Why? Because of a new covid variant that apparently originated in South Africa. The New York Post reports: The World Health Organization has scheduled a special meeting Friday to discuss a worrying new coronavirus variant detected in South Africa that appears to be rapidly mutating. The so-called B.1.1.529 variant appears to have a high number of mutations — about 30 — »

How Much Good Do the Vaccines Do?

Featured image I have always had a lot of faith in the anti-covid vaccines, largely because they were developed under the auspices of President Trump. (It has been utterly bizarre to see Democrats like Joe Biden and Kamala Harris go from vowing not to take a Trump-sponsored vaccine to demanding that all of our elementary school children be vaccinated, like it or not.) At the same time, I think pretty much everyone »

Fifth Circuit strikes blow against illegal vaccine mandate

Featured image Last week, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals reaffirmed its initial stay of Joe Biden’s vaccine mandate. The Court ordered that “Enforcement of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s ‘COVID-19 Vaccination and Testing; Emergency Temporary Standard’ remain[] stayed pending adequate judicial review of the petitioners’ underlying motions for a permanent injunction.” It further ordered that “OSHA take no steps to implement or enforce the Mandate until further court order.” Behind »

Covid and Kids: A Policy Disaster

Featured image I’ve said it before, but will repeat myself: what we have done to our children and young people, in the name of protecting the oldest and sickest in our population, is a crime. We have known for a long time that covid is not dangerous to children, yet they have suffered more than anyone else from the irrational lockdowns that one government after another has imposed. Even today, it is »