Idiocy Trumps Immunity
The US death toll exceeds the population of Wyoming, but Fox News viewers think that's how freedom works
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Republicans were for “herd immunity” before they were against it.
In 2020, after President Fairy Tale realized his quack cures and bleach-injection ideas weren’t being adopted in place of CDC guidelines, Trump put nutty radiologist Scott Atlas on his Coronavirus Task Force. Atlas was a proponent of the idea that the best way to get this whole Carona thing under control was by making sure everyone caught the devious little germ as quickly as possible.
At the time, infectious disease specialist Michael Osterholm (who became a Biden Covid-19 adviser during the transition) derided Atlas’s whacked-out ideas as, “the most amazing combination of pixie dust and pseudoscience I’ve ever seen.”
The proper way to achieve herd immunity, of course, would be to get enough people vaccinated the way Operation Warp Speed intended.
But as the New York Times reports today, experts now say the “herd immunity” isn’t going to happen? Why? Because “widely circulating coronavirus variants and persistent hesitancy about vaccines will keep the goal out of reach.
In 2020, “Warp Speed” Slammed Into a Wall
Over on Fox News, “Operation Warp Speed” was a great idea, of course, when Dear Leader was President. Except for the fact that it slammed into a brick wall when Trump botched the rollout.
As we already knew, Trump’s promise to deliver 20 million vaccine shots by the end of 2020 was not backed up with the logistical planning and focus needed to get those shots distributed and injected. Instead of 20 million vaccinations, we saw only 2.1 million.
Worse, when Trump dumped a shit-ton of easy-to-spoil vaccines on ill-prepared pharmacy chains Walgreen’s and CVS, a lot of those vaccines were wasted. As Kaiser Health Network reported today, CVS and Walgreen’s “account for the lion’s share of wasted vaccine doses” since the rollout began. The two companies “have wasted more doses than states, U.S. territories and federal agencies combined.”
Why? Because Trump screwed everything up. According to KHN: “CVS said ‘nearly all’ of its reported vaccine waste occurred” during the botched Trump Administration rollout.
Now That Biden Is Actually Operating at Warp Speed, Republicans Don’t Like It.
We are just over 100 days into the Biden Administration. The economy is booming. And already 100 million Americans are fully vaccinated. It’s an amazing achievement that gives America a real chance of crushing the virus almost completely. Of course, Fox News and the GOP hate it. Tucker Carlson is so determined to kill his own viewers that he’s not only encouraging them to ditch masks in the name of personal freedom but also to harass parents who exercise their personal freedoms differently by making their kids wear masks.
Carlson’s mask screed… fits right in with the “anti-vaccine tirades and rants” he’s increasingly seeing on Fox. There’s clear proof of the dangers in several recent polls, he said, that show significant percentages of people, particularly the Republicans who are Fox’s core audience, will refuse vaccines.
It’s no surprise, then, that 7 of the 8 states most opposed to Covid vaccines voted for Trump in 2020. (The 8th is Georgia, which Trump lost by 11,779 votes.)
As Elaine Godfrey wrote in The Atlantic last month: “It’s possible—even probable—public-health experts told me, that months from now, some rural areas will still have very low vaccination rates, providing isolated havens for the coronavirus. That outcome could be calamitous.”
Vaccine hesitancy is particularly strong in rural communities because freedom. (Also known as “freedumb.”) And even if the rest of America does get the vaccine, these rural communities are leaving themselves permanently at risk.
As Dr. Marc Lipsitch, epidemiologist at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, explains it to the Times : “If the coverage is 95 percent in the United States as a whole, but 70 percent in some small town, the virus doesn’t care. It will make its way around the small town.”
Facebook is still making things worse, too. The Zuckerberg Ad Fraud Machine has a history of funneling readers toward coronavirus misinformation. And even when they take the worst misinformation down, they put it back up! As The Guardian reported recently, one of the first decisions of its new content moderation “Supreme Court” was to restore “blatant medical misinformation about a debunked coronavirus ‘cure’ with potentially lethal side-effects.”
Thanks to Trump, we’ve already reached the point where the US death toll exceeds the population of Wyoming. Under Biden, we could win the war against Covid. Unfortunately, thanks to Fox News, Facebook and GOP misinformation, the citizens of Wyoming (and several other Red States) are still vowing not to get vaccinated.