Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Institutionalized Experts

 

“HANLON’S RAZOR: Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.” -– Murphy’s Law Book Two: More Reasons Why Things Go Wrong

Malice is a fun and easy explanation for the conduct of bureaucrats and politicians we dislike or distrust. Substituting stupidity for malice still lets us feel good in the moment. However, there are very senior experts in many fields within large organizations connected with networks of other large organizations, who are not stupid and who are not self-evidently malicious. Their conduct, when it seems to contradict observable facts and theory, might be better characterized as “institutionalized expertise.”

Whatever the basics of a profession, when that profession is practiced in the context of large institutions over many years, the expert’s reactions are likely conditioned by the culture and system of rewards presented by the institutional context. If the results are, from the outside, less than desirable, they may be the best the expert can conceive of within the limiting conditions of his institutional setting.

Dr. Anthony Fauci

Dr. Fauci, adviser to six presidents, apparently trusted World Health Organization claims about the Chinese virus until it was too late to mount an international campaign to contain the disease in Communist China. He then apparently bought the obviously bogus model of a British serial exaggerator. He then peddled a cocktail napkin model for controlling epidemics. Did this pattern of conduct arise from ill motive, incompetence, or something else?

I have attacked Fauci as a fraudster or ill-motivated. However, I have always entertained another explanation. The fact of his survival in a bureaucratized government research and policy setting for decades points to his successful adaptation to the culture of both United States public medical organizations. Beyond that, as he climbed and clung to the top of his field, he became dependent on relations with networks of similarly public health entities. You are not going to affect the course of diseases that arise on other continents without other nations’ political and medical leadership cooperating. This can be done on a one-to-one basis, event by event, but it might seem more efficient to have one or more international coordinating bodies. Hence the World Health Organization.

Unfortunately, the World Health Organization, like other international bodies, naturally tends away from clear accountability. No elected politician, dictator, or monarch can be effectively blamed for WHO decisions, and only one or two in the world might have the power to unilaterally change WHO conduct. Like other international bodies, it invites political deal-making and cronyism in its staffing. Yet, Dr. Fauci and other American infectious disease specialists needed to work with the WHO.

Likewise, Dr. Fauci needed to work with the Chinese Communist Party. Oh, he would not say it that way, but he needed cooperation from Chinese infectious disease research organizations. These organizations, like all of Chinese society, must act in harmony with the CCP if they wish to survive.

So it is that Dr. Fauci could assert with a straight face that the current head of the WHO is a good doctor, when in fact he is the hand-picked agent of the Chinese Communist Party. To speak this truth would require Dr. Fauci first to assess that burning the bridge to the WHO would be supported by our own national political leadership. This means Congress would have to be on board, in addition to the president. It means that we would have an alternative in place that could replace the function, however compromised, of providing access to the countries where infectious diseases arise or persist, threatening our future security.

Likewise, Dr. Fauci had to claim, likely even to himself, that Chinese medical researchers, with whom he and his colleagues had built relationships, could be trusted to fully and truthfully report medical data. The geographic area from which influenza and “novel” coronavirus strains arise has been under the control of the Chinese Communist Party since 1949. Under long-standing models of disease control, American medical authorities needed timely access to data to then generate a timely and effective response here.

This compulsion overcame the certain knowledge that the Chinese Communist Party completely controls the lives, including the professional lives, of Chinese in the party’s grasp. As I pointed out April 2, 2020, we are now reliving what the Chinese Communist Party did to the world in the 2003 SARS outbreak: “we should have known it was coming.”

If Dr. Fauci were a leftist, deep state operative, he would not now be on the record contradicting Woodward for doing what Woodward always does, inventing quotes. Dr. Fauci disputes Woodward’s claims.

Dr. Anthony Fauci on Wednesday shot down journalist Bob Woodward’s reporting that he once said President Trump was “unfocused in meetings” and that “his sole purpose is to get re-elected” — saying he doesn’t “recall that at all.”

Fauci, the administration’s top infectious diseases expert, was quoted in Woodward’s new book, “Rage,” as disparaging the president’s “rudderless” leadership and saying his “attention span is like a minus number.”

“If you notice, it was ‘others’ who have said that. You should ask ‘others.’ I don’t recall that at all,” Fauci told Fox News correspondent John Roberts….

“I didn’t get any sense that he was distorting anything. In my discussions with him, they were always straightforward about the concerns that we had,” Fauci said.

Marine Corps General (Retired) James Mattis

President Trump recruited a Marine Corps officer who retired at the top rank of four-star general as his first Secretary of Defense. James Mattis made his mark as a two-star general commanding the 1st Marine Division, configured in the World War II and Cold War version of the Marine Corps, in an offensive from the shore across the Iraqi desert in 2003. In the race to Baghdad, with the Army’s premier Cold War corp on the left flank, Mattis ended the career of a successful colonel, a regimental commander because he moved too slow relative to the Army in the race north.

Mattis properly dressed this institutional political move in acceptable doctrinal language, with his spokesman mouthing words about tempo, implying the colonel had placed Marines and the nation at risk by misplaced concern for individual Marines’ lives versus the mission.

Col. Dowdy’s firing was even more unusual because he didn’t commit any of the acts that normally precipitate a dismissal: failing to complete a mission, disobeying a direct order, breaking the rules of war. “It was a decision based on operating tempo,” says Lt. Eric Knapp, a spokesman for the First Marine Division. He wouldn’t elaborate….

Gen. Mattis and Col. Dowdy personify all that is celebrated in Marine Corps culture. Gen. Mattis, 53, is a “warrior monk,” as some of his men put it, a lifelong bachelor consumed with the study and practice of battle tactics. Col. Dowdy is beloved for the attention he pays to his men, from the grunts on up.

The qualities of these two Marines eventually tore them apart. Gen. Mattis, a Marine for 33 years, saw speed as paramount in the Iraq war plan. Col. Dowdy thought sacrificing everything for speed imperiled the welfare of his men.

The dispute was stoked by widespread but mistaken assumptions about how the Iraqis would fight. The desire for speed stemmed from the Pentagon’s expectation of a fierce, protracted battle in Baghdad, with far less resistance in other areas. But it turned out that Baghdad fell easily, while the countryside continued to seethe with resistance.

Mattis then showed interest in the kind of doctrine and strategy reflected in “from the halls of Montezuma to the shores of Tripoli.” When the Bush-Rumsfeld non-strategy collapsed, and Iraq failed to instantly, magically transition to democracy, Mattis joined his name with the real doctrinal change leader, Army General David Petraeus, in a new joint manual on insurgency and counter-insurgency that really updated the Marine Corps’ hard-won knowledge codified in the famous Small Wars Manual in 1940. He at least mouthed all the right words from the Marine Corps’ buried tradition of dealing with messy, ambiguous situations from the dawn of our nation to the eve of World War II.

General Mattis survived the Obama administration without being fired or prosecuted. He served as NATO’s Supreme Allied Commander Transformation and then Central Command (CENTCOM) commander. After three years in retirement, he came back to the Department of Defense as President Trump’s first Secretary of Defense. He had no problem reading President Trump’s National Defense Strategy, which clearly set the course the voters had elected Donald J. Trump to pursue. Yet, in the end, we get the seemingly odd resignation letter.

I have been privileged to serve as our country’s 26th Secretary of Defense which has allowed me to serve alongside our men and women of the Department in defense of our citizens and our ideals.

I am proud of the progress that has been made over the past two years on some of the key goals articulated in our National Defense Strategy: putting the Department on a more sound budgetary footing, improving readiness and lethality in our forces, and reforming the Department’s business practices for greater performance. Our troops continue to provide the capabilities needed to prevail in conflict and sustain strong U.S. global influence.

This is boilerplate, showing Mattis was not an incompetent or entirely insubordinate administration officer. All of these achievements are good government goals that our defense establishment has paid lip service to for decades. So where is the conflict? Now we get to it indirectly:

One core belief I have always held is that our strength as a nation is inextricably linked to the strength of our unique and comprehensive system of alliances and partnerships. While the US remains the indispensable nation in the free world, we cannot protect our interests or serve that role effectively without maintaining strong alliances and showing respect to those allies. Like you, I have said from the beginning that the armed forces of the United States should not be the policeman of the world. Instead, we must use all tools of American power to provide for the common defense, including providing effective leadership to our alliances. NATO’s 29 democracies demonstrated that strength in their commitment to fighting alongside us following the 9-11 attack on America. The Defeat-ISIS coalition of 74 nations is further proof.

“Maintaining strong alliances and showing respect to those allies” had given us decrepit NATO forces, openly contemptuous of America’s willingness to demand allies show us respect by pulling their own weight. It is this that President Trump had already significantly corrected by the time Mattis had his hissy fit. Objectively speaking, NATO was strengthened over President Trump’s first term, especially in the states closest to Russia. Failure to show seriousness in defense budgets is the most basic signal of a weak alliance. How could Mattis not get this?

The answer is in his resume. Mattis was an institutionalized expert. He cannot imagine or think through the problem of decrepit international organizations lacking the urgency of impending general war and nuclear peril. All the people he knows believe in long-established processes and protocols. It was always a given that America would pick up the lion’s share and mouth praise for weaker junior partners in the name of alliance.

Similarly, I believe we must be resolute and unambiguous in our approach to those countries whose strategic interests are increasingly in tension with ours. It is clear that China and Russia, for example, want to shape a world consistent with their authoritarian model – gaining veto authority over other nations’ economic, diplomatic, and security decisions – to promote their own interests at the expense of their neighbors, America and our allies. That is why we must use all the tools of American power to provide for the common defense.

But of course, this was precisely what President Obama had failed to do and what President Trump had worked furiously with all the instruments of national power to correct. President Trump had already gone further in fully implementing his innovative National Defense Strategy, with huge emphasis on revitalizing our economy and energy might as a basis of generating all other forms of national power. How could Mattis miss this? His career had been spent with the military constantly calling for new weapon systems and funding, while the foreign policy orthodoxy held that we should cut trade deals that try to engage potential adversaries and to make their populations more desirous of political liberalization. Now he saw a president taking a consistent course of action that actually put both China and Russia, to say nothing of Iran, more in check than any president since Reagan.

My views on treating allies with respect and also being clear-eyed about both malign actors and strategic competitors are strongly held and informed by over four decades of immersion in these issues. We must do everything possible to advance an international order that is most conducive to our security, prosperity and values, and we are strengthened in this effort by the solidarity of our alliances.

This is disconnected from objective reality, but it is just the verbiage his institutional experience had taught him was appropriate. Mattis certainly did not mean prosperity for all the forgotten Americans. How is record low unemployment for minorities, women, and the least educated, while the stock market soured, grounds for resignation? The trade deals were driving improved American prosperity and shifting the balance away from the economy that kept the Chinese Communist Party and the Peoples’ Liberation Army growing in power. So American security and prosperity were objectively being improved by the policies of the president Mattis now openly despises.

You can call Mattis a snake, even a danger to our constitution. I choose to see him as a deeply institutionalized expert. He is a creature of his environment, just as much as Dr. Fauci. Both are object lessons in the limits of professional expertise in a complex institutional environment.

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  1. DonG (skeptic) Coolidge

    I want to know if any of that money that Fauci sent to the Wuhan lab was used for gain-of-function research that created the pandemic virus. Just add that to his list of crimes against humanity.

    • #1
    • September 11, 2020, at 8:14 PM PDT
    • 6 likes
  2. Stina Member

    Foolish is all encompassing and wields pity more than condemnation.

    • #2
    • September 11, 2020, at 8:29 PM PDT
    • 3 likes
  3. Flicker Coolidge

    Flicker’s Razor: There is a point after which repeated incompetence must be viewed as malice.

    • #3
    • September 11, 2020, at 8:38 PM PDT
    • 10 likes
  4. Fake John/Jane Galt Coolidge

    The issue is that our federal government is a Democrat organization. The only people successful in it are Democrats of one form or another. People like Mattis, Fauci are Democrat by nature and thus Leftists by nature and act accordingly.

    • #4
    • September 11, 2020, at 10:26 PM PDT
    • 5 likes
  5. Arahant Member

    Where does Hanlon stand on Mueller team lawyers who mistyped their passwords ten times in a row? When it was not one, but a whole passel?

    • #5
    • September 11, 2020, at 11:00 PM PDT
    • 6 likes
  6. Stina Member

    What does it mean to be “adequately” explained by stupidity. At some point, either we seriously rethink elevating idiots to positions of unquestionable authority or stupidity isn’t an adequate defense.

    I’m generally in favor of benefit of the doubt, but I am on board with recognizing real evil exists and that there is room for discernment in evaluating these things.

    As such, I think Hanlon’s Razor is misleading with good intention and carries with it it’s own kind of foolishness – naivete.

    • #6
    • September 12, 2020, at 6:57 AM PDT
    • 3 likes
  7. Steve C. Member

    First, I had to read the article on Mattis.

    Speed is one of the ten “principles of war” defined by the American military . A rapid pace allows the attacker to dictate where and when events occur. Like any principle, it is to be balanced by sound military judgment. For every 5 examples where speed, was critical to success, there is 1 where insisting on speed was the wrong choice.

    I’m not going to critique the choices made by those two commanders other than to highlight…

    1. Gen. Zinni’s statement of the obvious: when the boss tells you to go faster, you go faster.

    2. Gen. Kelly, Assistant Division Commander, seems to have failed in getting the message across to COL Dowdy that Mattis wanted him to go faster. Maybe it’s uncharitable of me, Kelly comes across as wishy washy.

    3. Don’t these guys have radios and helicopters? I find it odd that at no point did Mattis call his boss and explain the situation. Or, for Mattis to confront Dowdy in person or over the radio.

    4. it’s quite possible Dowdy was exhausted and Mattis made the correct, if controversial, decision.

    • #7
    • September 12, 2020, at 8:02 AM PDT
    • 2 likes
    • This comment has been edited.
  8. Rodin Member

    Flicker (View Comment):

    Flicker’s Razor: There is a point after which repeated incompetence must be viewed as malice.

    Yes, but it is the malice of the persons who keep them in power.

    • #8
    • September 12, 2020, at 11:34 AM PDT
    • 2 likes
  9. Rodin Member

    What is being described by these successful careerists is “muscle memory”. It is something that comes instinctive in their operational mode. The observaations on Fauci are particularly on point because, in Trump’s terms, Dr Fauci had become a “deal maker” schmoozing the undesirable for desired ends. His philosophy is more in line with central control progressives as that is where he has forged his career. Thus he has been happiest when that mode in is operation whether under a Democrat or Republican administration. 

    General Mattis is a bit more complex. His “warrior monk” persona suggests deep consideration of the manner and uses of warfare. Any military to maintain effectiveness must “blood the sword”. If you equate national defense with an effective military then it stands to reason that participating in a least some low level conflict somewhere is consistent with national defense. When you wrap this terrible reality into a more high-minded purpose — bringing democracy wherever there is tyranny — it is easy to see your task as a religious calling and you strategies and actions as elevated. When your commander pushes for a different direction it is wholly correct, in your mind, to sabotage that strategy and, when necessary, call it out publicly.

    • #9
    • September 12, 2020, at 11:45 AM PDT
    • 2 likes
  10. Flicker Coolidge

    Rodin (View Comment):

    Flicker (View Comment):

    Flicker’s Razor: There is a point after which repeated incompetence must be viewed as malice.

    Yes, but it is the malice of the persons who keep them in power.

    I mean this on the micro level and the macro level. Just as there’s plenty of incompetence, there’s plenty of malice to go around.

    • #10
    • September 12, 2020, at 12:44 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  11. Steve C. Member

    Rodin (View Comment):

    What is being described by these successful careerists is “muscle memory”. It is something that comes instinctive in their operational mode. The observaations on Fauci are particularly on point because, in Trump’s terms, Dr Fauci had become a “deal maker” schmoozing the undesirable for desired ends. His philosophy is more in line with central control progressives as that is where he has forged his career. Thus he has been happiest when that mode in is operation whether under a Democrat or Republican administration.

    General Mattis is a bit more complex. His “warrior monk” persona suggests deep consideration of the manner and uses of warfare. Any military to maintain effectiveness must “blood the sword”. If you equate national defense with an effective military then it stands to reason that participating in a least some low level conflict somewhere is consistent with national defense. When you wrap this terrible reality into a more high-minded purpose — bringing democracy wherever there is tyranny — it is easy to see your task as a religious calling and you strategies and actions as elevated. When your commander pushes for a different direction it is wholly correct, in your mind, to sabotage that strategy and, when necessary, call it out publicly.

    Not a Mattis defender. But he did call it out publicly in his letter of resignation. Did he sabotage Trump’s policy? Possible, but I’d like to see some evidence. 

    • #11
    • September 12, 2020, at 1:50 PM PDT
    • 1 like
  12. TreeRat Member

    How is record low unemployment for minorities, women, and the least educated, while the stock market soured, grounds for resignation?

    Soared?

    • #12
    • September 12, 2020, at 3:05 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  13. Rodin Member

    Steve C. (View Comment):
    Not a Mattis defender. But he did call it out publicly in his letter of resignation. Did he sabotage Trump’s policy? Possible, but I’d like to see some evidence.

    Resigning and then publicly disagreeing is appropriate. The question is, given how you feel, how did you conduct yourself prior to the resignation? “Sabotage” maybe a bit provocative, but when you think something is ill considered, have made your case at the moment you are given a direction and it remains unchanged, it is not unheard of delaying the implementing actions in the hopes that you will be persuasive another day. If you are persuasive later, then the slow walking action is in accord with the final decision, but if the direction remains unchanged, then steps you took in knowing delay are a form of sabotage. They may or may not effect the desired end state due to the delay, but they could.

    • #13
    • September 12, 2020, at 3:20 PM PDT
    • 3 likes
    • This comment has been edited.
  14. CarolJoy, Thread Hijacker Coolidge

    DonG (skeptic) (View Comment):

    I want to know if any of that money that Fauci sent to the Wuhan lab was used for gain-of-function research that created the pandemic virus. Just add that to his list of crimes against humanity.

    I often consider your brief comments, as well as the longer ones, and then the phone rings or whatever and I don’t even get back to “like” yr commentary.

    But I value your statements, as well as the wisdom and knowledge behind them.

    I hope to someday see Obama and Fauci suffer at least as much as Harvard researcher Charles Lieber has had to, for the fact they supported this engineered virus.

    But most of us who wish for such know it is not likely to happen.

    • #14
    • September 12, 2020, at 3:27 PM PDT
    • Like
  15. Mark Camp Member

    Colonel,

    Good post.

    Someone help me out here. I think it was here on R. that we discussed a closely related theory explaining the (consistent, profound, and in the cold light of day: obvious) folly of today’s experts: that there has been, in an increasingly specialized society, a shift. 

    An educated person 150 years ago was educated about the current level of knowledge of every field of intellectual inquiry. He could therefore make intelligent judgements on complex social questions.

    Today, the most educated and empowered courtiers are highly specialized experts (like Dr. Fauci) who lack the general education to make rational judgements about any problem outside their area of expertise.

    I don’t mean to suggest that one of these theories of cause and effect is wrong. I think the cause you identify: the institutional incentives of the courtier class, is just as important as their cognitive deficiencies.

    Private Camp, E1

     

    • #15
    • September 12, 2020, at 4:09 PM PDT
    • 4 likes
  16. Clifford A. Brown Contributor
    Clifford A. Brown

    Rodin (View Comment):

    What is being described by these successful careerists is “muscle memory”. It is something that comes instinctive in their operational mode. The observaations on Fauci are particularly on point because, in Trump’s terms, Dr Fauci had become a “deal maker” schmoozing the undesirable for desired ends. His philosophy is more in line with central control progressives as that is where he has forged his career. Thus he has been happiest when that mode in is operation whether under a Democrat or Republican administration.

    General Mattis is a bit more complex. His “warrior monk” persona suggests deep consideration of the manner and uses of warfare. Any military to maintain effectiveness must “blood the sword”. If you equate national defense with an effective military then it stands to reason that participating in a least some low level conflict somewhere is consistent with national defense. When you wrap this terrible reality into a more high-minded purpose — bringing democracy wherever there is tyranny — it is easy to see your task as a religious calling and you strategies and actions as elevated. When your commander pushes for a different direction it is wholly correct, in your mind, to sabotage that strategy and, when necessary, call it out publicly.

    I do not necessarily contradict your explanations. I am pointing to constrained decision-making under complex institutional conditions. If we rose over 30 or 40 years in these institutions, reaching the very top ranks, chances are we would see the world through the same filters.

    • #16
    • September 12, 2020, at 6:44 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  17. Clifford A. Brown Contributor
    Clifford A. Brown

    TreeRat (View Comment):

    How is record low unemployment for minorities, women, and the least educated, while the stock market soured, grounds for resignation?

    Soared?

    Yes.

    • #17
    • September 12, 2020, at 6:46 PM PDT
    • 3 likes
  18. Clifford A. Brown Contributor
    Clifford A. Brown

    Mark Camp (View Comment):

    Colonel,

    Good post.

    Someone help me out here. I think it was here on R. that we discussed a closely related theory explaining the (consistent, profound, and in the cold light of day: obvious) folly of today’s experts: that there has been, in an increasingly specialized society, a shift.

    An educated person 150 years ago was educated about the current level of knowledge of every field of intellectual inquiry. He could therefore make intelligent judgements on complex social questions.

    Today, the most educated and empowered courtiers are highly specialized experts (like Dr. Fauci) who lack the general education to make rational judgements about any problem outside their area of expertise.

    I don’t mean to suggest that one of these theories of cause and effect is wrong. I think the cause you identify: the institutional incentives of the courtier class, is just as important as their cognitive deficiencies.

    Private Camp, E1

    Yes, humans and human institutions are marvelously complex. I think both sorts of explanation have value and validity.

     

    • #18
    • September 12, 2020, at 6:49 PM PDT
    • 1 like
  19. ToryWarWriter Thatcher

    I am reminded of the ancient times, and the food shortage problem.

    Ancient civilizations would come up with increasingly complex religious hierarchies and then would fall apart at a crop failure. Those advanced and complex religions with byzantine priest classes would fall apart at a crisis.

    We are in one of those crisis now and they are falling apart from there failure to manage it. Its time to find new priests.

    • #19
    • September 14, 2020, at 5:41 AM PDT
    • 3 likes
  20. TBA Coolidge
    TBA

    Stina (View Comment):

    What does it mean to be “adequately” explained by stupidity. At some point, either we seriously rethink elevating idiots to positions of unquestionable authority or stupidity isn’t an adequate defense.

    I’m generally in favor of benefit of the doubt, but I am on board with recognizing real evil exists and that there is room for discernment in evaluating these things.

    As such, I think Hanlon’s Razor is misleading with good intention and carries with it it’s own kind of foolishness – naivete.

    I suppose it’s good for understanding the ‘why’ of failure. But people in positions of power who fail to do the job entrusted to them must be reprimanded or removed. I don’t actually care if it’s endemic to the culture – in fact, the only way to fix the culture is to reprimand or remove members of that culture who deliver bad product. 

    • #20
    • September 14, 2020, at 11:20 AM PDT
    • 3 likes
  21. The Reticulator Member

    TBA (View Comment):
    in fact, the only way to fix the culture is to reprimand or remove members of that culture who deliver bad product.

    Removed or demoted. I remember one reprimand at a university computer center that went something like this. “I’ve gotten complaints that you did X. [Brief discussion.] Consider yourself reprimanded. Now get back to work.”

    • #21
    • September 14, 2020, at 11:32 AM PDT
    • 2 likes
    • This comment has been edited.
  22. Clifford A. Brown Contributor
    Clifford A. Brown

    TBA (View Comment):

    Stina (View Comment):

    What does it mean to be “adequately” explained by stupidity. At some point, either we seriously rethink elevating idiots to positions of unquestionable authority or stupidity isn’t an adequate defense.

    I’m generally in favor of benefit of the doubt, but I am on board with recognizing real evil exists and that there is room for discernment in evaluating these things.

    As such, I think Hanlon’s Razor is misleading with good intention and carries with it it’s own kind of foolishness – naivete.

    I suppose it’s good for understanding the ‘why’ of failure. But people in positions of power who fail to do the job entrusted to them must be reprimanded or removed. I don’t actually care if it’s endemic to the culture – in fact, the only way to fix the culture is to reprimand or remove members of that culture who deliver bad product.

    Reprimand or remove on what precise basis? Define “product” in the State Department. In the Department of Defense. In the CDC . . . . How will firing political appointees actually change the behavior of an organization that is critically dependent on ability to act outside the United States’ geographic boundaries? That requires a lot of political heavy-lifting to get desired outcomes through existing or new international connections/structures. 

    So, you want to catch the next pandemic at or near the source. The source will likely be in an area controlled by the Chinese Communist Party or in Sub-Saharan Africa. How does firing and replacing the head of every single U.S. health bureaucracy get you more effective access/surveillance?

    • #22
    • September 14, 2020, at 12:30 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  23. The Reticulator Member

    Clifford A. Brown (View Comment):
    So, you want to catch the next pandemic at or near the source. The source will likely be in an area controlled by the Chinese Communist Party or in Sub-Saharan Africa. How does firing and replacing the head of every single U.S. health bureaucracy get you more effective access/surveillance?

    I don’t know about every single one, but I’d be in favor of unfairly firing those department heads who are unlucky enough to have bad, human-induced things happen on their watch. It would motivate their successors to have better luck.

    • #23
    • September 14, 2020, at 12:55 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  24. Clifford A. Brown Contributor
    Clifford A. Brown

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    Clifford A. Brown (View Comment):
    So, you want to catch the next pandemic at or near the source. The source will likely be in an area controlled by the Chinese Communist Party or in Sub-Saharan Africa. How does firing and replacing the head of every single U.S. health bureaucracy get you more effective access/surveillance?

    I don’t know about every single one, but I’d be in favor of unfairly firing those department heads who are unlucky enough to have bad, human-induced things happen on their watch. It would motivate their successors to have better luck.

    Yes, provided that the department heads are fired for things under their full control, within the boundaries of the U.S. However, a significant part of infectious disease response/prevention is dependent on what happens in other countries. So, solutions to the weaknesses revealed or made more painfully obvious since last December, lie in the treaty/ international agreement realm, with the Congress and the president responsible for reaching such arrangements with other sovereign states.

     

    • #24
    • September 14, 2020, at 1:21 PM PDT
    • 1 like
  25. TBA Coolidge
    TBA

    Clifford A. Brown (View Comment):

    TBA (View Comment):

    Stina (View Comment):

    What does it mean to be “adequately” explained by stupidity. At some point, either we seriously rethink elevating idiots to positions of unquestionable authority or stupidity isn’t an adequate defense.

    I’m generally in favor of benefit of the doubt, but I am on board with recognizing real evil exists and that there is room for discernment in evaluating these things.

    As such, I think Hanlon’s Razor is misleading with good intention and carries with it it’s own kind of foolishness – naivete.

    I suppose it’s good for understanding the ‘why’ of failure. But people in positions of power who fail to do the job entrusted to them must be reprimanded or removed. I don’t actually care if it’s endemic to the culture – in fact, the only way to fix the culture is to reprimand or remove members of that culture who deliver bad product.

    Reprimand or remove on what precise basis? Define “product” in the State Department. In the Department of Defense. In the CDC . . . . How will firing political appointees actually change the behavior of an organization that is critically dependent on ability to act outside the United States’ geographic boundaries? That requires a lot of political heavy-lifting to get desired outcomes through existing or new international connections/structures.

    So, you want to catch the next pandemic at or near the source. The source will likely be in an area controlled by the Chinese Communist Party or in Sub-Saharan Africa. How does firing and replacing the head of every single U.S. health bureaucracy get you more effective access/surveillance?

    I don’t think I’d fire and replace all of them. Just some judicious executions and tar and feathers for those who didn’t bother to check for counterfeiting data off as hard science. 

    And yeah, I know it’s not that simple. But a man’s gotta grouse. 

    • #25
    • September 14, 2020, at 2:13 PM PDT
    • 3 likes
  26. CarolJoy, Thread Hijacker Coolidge

    ToryWarWriter (View Comment):

    I am reminded of the ancient times, and the food shortage problem.

    Ancient civilizations would come up with increasingly complex religious hierarchies and then would fall apart at a crop failure. Those advanced and complex religions with byzantine priest classes would fall apart at a crisis.

    We are in one of those crisis now and they are falling apart from there failure to manage it. Its time to find new priests.

    The major crisis faced in 2020 has been carefully designed since at least 2014, and put into place only once the media, our holiest of high priests, was a captured puppet of the crisis’ designer.

    The media is always needed as a major portion of the needed control in order for a crisis to expand ever wider. Naomi Klein came up with the idea of “Diaster Capitalism” to describe the way the housing market, Big Moneyed Gambles utilized their capture of the media. These efforts brought about a public that was at least 40% insistent that our Big Government manage a Big Bail Out for Big Financial Players like AIG and Goldman Sachs at the top, and a score of other players beneath them. (Costing the middle class some 23 to 32 trillions of dollars.) The book she published was entitled “Disaster Capitalism.”

    Now we have Bill Gates and Big Pharma united together to bring us “Disaster Infection.”

    Now this is an infection about which people are noticing that while still President, Obama offered up millions to his bag boy Fauci to take over to the lab in Wuhan so that there could continue to be infection explorations that US law had banned in the states.

    Fauci was so aware of what was going on that he brazenly brought up the fact that Trump would be faced with a pandemic in his first years in office. (He stated this in 2017.)

    Meanwhile Big Pharma has steadily increased its funding of media ads such that nary a word is stated about any downside to Big Pharma. Despite increasing consumer awareness that vaccines, maim and kill, the legacy TV and radio news stations never cover this.

    Gates has such a hold on the media that recently The Columbia Journalism Review did an expose regarding Gates’ “donations” to so many media outlets it is mind boggling. I detailed this involvement here: https://ricochet.com/797196/how-bill-gates-money-helps-make-gates-look-good/

    End of Part One

     

    • #26
    • September 14, 2020, at 6:20 PM PDT
    • Like
  27. CarolJoy, Thread Hijacker Coolidge

    Part Two

    @torywarwriter

    Gates also contributes 15% of the $$ that WHO lives on. So WHO itself has gotten into the media influence game. As the Columbia Journal review was coming forward, WHO officials bragged about their paying off social media moguls to continue censoring any one they spot who is undermining the COVID narrative. (I continually had my posts on HCQ deleted by FB until I started spelling hydrozychloroquine backwards.)

    Gates & Big Pharma are intent on us facing various lockdown measures, with a 2nd major lockdown predicted by many social experts by mid October. Also the most lucrative parts of the plan supposed to resolve COVID include continued mandated mask wearing, mandated vaccines, and then having a full fledged contact tracing program. Along with an electronic harnessing system to ensure that we human s remain 6 feet apart at all times. This last item was played up enthusiastically on W”Weekend Edition” Melbourne Australia as the best thing to happen since slice bread.

    It was well established decades ago that quarantine measures work best at the beginning of an infections spread, and are quite pointless later on. Also quarantine makes sense when those who are at risk employ the measure, not when the whole society goes off the economic cliff to try and do this months later. and the idea that we are doing ourselves a favor by remaining locked down is ludicrous. In my County, we did not even have major mask mandates until third week of June, when it was quite likely some 11 to 22% of all of the residents had already become COVID positive with a mild version of the disease.

    Despite spending only God knows how much on PR, Bill Gates misspoke during one of his countless February to May interviews, and let it slip that “now during this first pandemic…” He and everyone involved should be wearing orange jumpsuits. But that is about as likely as the nation having witnessed circa 2011, Obama’s economic adviser Tim Geithner being perp walked to jail on the RICO charges that man clearly deserved.

    • #27
    • September 14, 2020, at 6:27 PM PDT
    • Like