Ricochet is the best place on the internet to discuss the issues of the day, either through commenting on posts or writing your own for our active and dynamic community in a fully moderated environment. In addition, the Ricochet Audio Network offers over 50 original podcasts with new episodes released every day.
If you think the public health response in Blue States to COVID-19 is anything other than a proxy for generalized state control of individual liberty, let me point you to Minnesota (and California). As has been detailed by Scott Johnson at Powerline blog in his series CORONAVIRUS IN ONE STATE, Democratic governor Tim Walz has been exercising autocratic rule on thin data. Remember the SARS-CoV-2 panic was started by visions of Chinese authorities welding high-rise apartment doors shut and Italian hospitals refusing ventilators to anyone over 80. The viral tsunami was coming and it was going to crash our health care system.
“Flatten the curve” was the mantra as government took extraordinary control over our lives and livelihoods for a brief period. Yes, the refrigerator trucks parked outside of New York hospitals were alarming. Yes, the mobilization of the government to provide emergency health care facilities in New York and Los Angeles was dramatic. Yes the response of private companies to providing PPE and tests was heartening and hopeful. And the wave passed. That didn’t mean there would be no more illness and death. But the health care system survived, treatment protocols were developed and shared. So now, let’s get back to living our lives, right?
Slow down there, Mr. and Ms. American. When we said “flatten the curve” we really meant “until there’s a cure.” Your individual civil liberties are a threat to public health so we still need to control your lives. Don’t you know, that if we maintain control of your life, death and disease will be banished?
That is certainly the rationale of the government in Minnesota (and California). You would think the absurdity would be obvious. And yet, here we are.
As Scott Johnson reported:
New deaths attributed to the epidemic have cratered. In the past three days, for example, the authorities have reported four (7/11), three (7/12), and two (7/13) new deaths. Six of the 9 new deaths occurred among residents of long-term care facilities. As I noted over the weekend, the median age of decedents as last reported is 83.6. The number of hospitalizations attributed to the disease would be unnoticeable under normal circumstances. It should be difficult to sustain the panic and to make the case that one-man rule is warranted on these facts.
But if you don’t sustain panic what is your justification for controlling everyone? As quoted by Scott, from a report in the Star Tribune:
State health officials worry that a recent uptick in COVID-19 cases among young adults and teenagers could spread the virus to people at higher risk — which would result in more deaths and hospitalizations.
In other words, we know the younger people will not get seriously ill but they will continue to be a vector for disease which threatens other people. So everyone must be controlled to preserve…what exactly? Is this strategy a conquering of death? No. People have and will continue to die of a variety of causes. But if government is permitted to control everyone in this “crisis” what prevents government from exerting control to attack other presumed bad outcomes for a subset of the population?
This same rationale is being applied in California. Our death count is higher than Minnesota but our deaths/1 million population is actually lower (Minnesota 273; California 180). Both of these states have higher deaths/1 million population than the Red States of Texas (115) and South Dakota (123) even while exercising far greater control of their respective populations. Flattening the curve never assured that the area under the curve would be any less. And so death continues to collect its tithe as it always does, but somehow this eternal phenomena justifies government control over my life?
In an America where we believe that…
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness
it is unimaginable that we have let our government exert such control over us. And yet here we are. This is madness.Published in