Should a pendemic strike again, where will you turn for guidance?
The lack of preparedness at every level of government (federal, state, and local) has nothing to do with a lack of funding or inadequate staffing. Instead, it has everything to do with governments’ bloat, mismanagement, cronyism, and poor focus. That’s particularly true of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). The agency’s failure to understand the severity of this virus, to provide useful advice to the American people and to political leaders, and to deliver appropriate testing capabilities has been widely documented.
Take Professor Neil Ferguson of Imperial College, London — arguably the single most influential person in the world right now: it was on the basis of his doomsday report that both Prime Minister Boris Johnson and President Trump were frightened, against their liberty-leaning instincts, into instituting the lockdowns which are killing jobs, businesses and the economy.
But it has since emerged that Ferguson has a track record of getting things spectacularly wrong. For example, his recommended response to the UK’s 2001 Foot and Mouth epidemic is now widely recognised as having led to the needless slaughter of millions of animals. (What’s the word for such an unnecessarily zealous response? Oh yes. ‘Overreaction’)
His modelling has been described by critics as ‘not fit for purpose.’ Worse — a breach of the most basic scientific etiquette — he has been reluctant to share the code which he used to model his doomsday conclusions.
Not only is there no price paid for getting things wrong, there really is no financial incentive to be a grounded, straight-down-the-line, unbiased journalist these days. It’s the Jim Acostas and Philip Ruckers of the world who get the book deals and big followings, not the diligent journalists poring over documents and offering serious, context-rich reporting.
There are plenty of solid reporters, but the most of the big-name journalists are only big names because they are granted a perch by powerful corporations. Most of best-known reporters aren’t especially talented writers, or especially knowledgeable, or especially good interviewers, or especially adept at ferreting out important stories. They have access. They break stories because insiders with hostility toward an administration hand them incriminating or damaging information. All they have to do is show a modicum of skepticism and judiciousness in reporting those facts. Many rarely do.
While money can’t yet buy vaccines for COVID-19, it can buy luxurious amenities to stave off doomsday anxiety and make isolation more comfortable. For rich New Yorkers, that means summer has come early.
“We’re headed to the Hamptons with my whiskey and Lysol wipes,” Upper East Sider Julie Macklowe says. Accommodations in a Cold War bunker and private jets are also now in high demand thanks to the novel and even faster-traveling virus.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Friday continued to spread the lie about President Trump amid the Coronavirus pandemic. “The president is asking people to inject Lysol into their lungs.” “Nancy Pelosi remembers to stock her $24K refrigerators with $13 ice cream but forgot to restock the Paycheck Protection Program for our small businesses,” tweeted Texas Rep. Dan Crenshaw last week. Touché.
Let’s watch together:
No, we will be on our own, as we always have been.