“When, Mr. President, will you deliver instant, standardized, country-wide testing to all the American people,” comes the daily, petulant demand from the malfunctioning media, reiterated by the expert class and an intelligentsia that is not always very intelligent.
The hype over testing will be the next contagion of illogic on matters related to coronavirus.
The testy twits are treating COVID testing as though it were an amulet against the dreaded disease. It isn’t. All testing does is give an individual a snapshot in time of his COVID status. As soon as he drives out of the testing facility, a COVID-free person could become infected.
Unless they engage in prevention, a single testing in time doesn’t in any way give individuals a clean bill of health.
Prevention protects people.
Testing is, however—at this stage of spread—helpful in giving medical researchers a grip on the symptomless-sick phenomenon, as well as an idea of how the disease is disseminated and distributed in the population.
Test and keep testing large enough representative samples, and you’ll get good prevalence data. You’ll probably discover statistically significant differences in COVID infection rates along the rural/metropolitan axis, and the Chinese/no-Chinese axis.
In fact, high-tech meccas are likely a good proxy for the correlation between COVID and the Chinese population. Hubs of high-tech like my state of Washington—the King and Snohomish counties, in particular—have high coronavirus infection rates.
Antibody status is another essential parameter obtained from testing. In addition to identifying the prevalence of disease in the population, a COVID serology assay will divulge who has developed antibodies to the virus, is now immune to it, and can get on with it.
But unless you vigorously protect your health status with barriers to SARS-CoV-2, testing is but a snapshot in time of your disease status.
In the fullness of time, mainstream will arrive at these simple deductions.
Before the testing fetish came the face-mask mythology. Face masks were the first contagion of illogic sprung on a gullible public.
Most “covidiots” insisted that, because the “experts” had said so, donning face masks during an epidemic to reduce droplet transmission was futile. Proven. Q.E.D. Nothing more to show.
But, as far back as March 5, in “Unmasking Statist, Socialist Propaganda About ‘Face Masks,’” this column unpacked the lies and illogic underlying the contention that masks (surgical and N95) were worthless to the public. As follows:
“While the coronavirus is indeed minuscule, smaller than 0.3 microns (likely between 0.1 and 0.2 microns), COVID-19 is delivered in a larger medium of bodily fluids or spray. Certainly, some barrier to the spittle in which the coronavirus is dispersed is better than none.”
“No surprise then, that world health authorities can’t seem to get their story straight on masks. At times, they concede ‘that N-95 face masks are protective.’ More frequently, they scratch the proverbial proboscis (ostensibly a sign of lying) and say ‘No, of course, they’re ineffective.’ In other words, ‘they work for me, the healthcare worker, but not for thee.’”
“For honesty’s sake,” I had exhorted, “the country’s health-care functionaries might appeal to consumers on the ground of dire shortages. But on the basis that no protection is better than some protection? Please! …”
On March 30, our great Tucker Carlson seconded my mask message of March 5, emphasizing the arguments above. Two days prior to Tucker, 23 days after Mercer—a lifetime in a pandemic—mainstream caught up. Wrote the New York Post: “Experts say face masks can help slow COVID-19, despite previous claims.”
A full month after this column’s advice to ignore government enjoinders against face masks and respirators, the government has reversed its position.
On April 3, government grandees finally instructed Americans to cover their faces with anything but surgical and N95 masks. In so doing, the government had stopped flouting logic and had come clean about why it had endangered American lives.
As pinpointed in my unmasking of March 5, the depraved calculus that went into advising Americans initially, and unintuitively, not to shield viral entry points—mouth, eyes and nose—was purely utilitarian. It stemmed from a fear that, by protecting their health, citizens would contribute to scarcity and undermine the health of healthcare workers.
Sold to the public as settled science, the initial mask fallacy-disguised-as-policy was social engineering for the sake of resource conservation. (The fallacy worked with “brainy” “Binyamin.” Let the shaming of the mini-men who dog Mercer begin.)
As a former HIV/AIDS counselor in Cape Town, South Africa, I remember Dr. Anthony Fauci’s pioneering work in that field. Back in the day, he and his taxpayer-funded medical sleuths impressively tracked down the index case in the AIDS epidemic in North America.
Steered by science, the old Centers for Disease Control and Prevention made that information known quite candidly. The HIV/AIDS index case in North America was Gaëtan Dugas, a dashing and daringly promiscuous Canadian flight attendant, who had had approximately 1,000 sexual partners.
Guided by political correctness, today’s CDC barely mentions the crucial work of contact tracing, because contact-tracing invariably leads viral RNA sequencing sleuths straight back to the individuals who arrived from Wuhan to, unwittingly, deliver death to Americans.
North America’s Patient Zero—the man who carried WuFlu from Wuhan to Washington State and who purportedly started the chain of infection in the United States on January 15—remains anonymous.
Not so Rev. Timothy Cole, a WASP who is (for reasons not quite scientific) openly referred to as Patient Zero of the District of Columbia. The reverend has expiated on television and to other news media for having infected parishioners at Christ Church Georgetown.
Only on April 5, 2020, did Reuters finally stumble on the Index Patient, nothing that,
“Each day that the administration debated the travel measures, roughly 14,000 travelers arrived in the United States from China, according to figures cited by the Trump administration. Among them was a traveler who came from Wuhan to Seattle in mid-January, who turned out to be the first confirmed case in the United States.”
As early as March 13, this columnist explained, at Townhall.com, that, “Genetic sequencing of virus extracted from infected patients allows scientists to pinpoint the virus’ origins and the timing of the ‘seeding event.’ That the virus that continues to kill elderly people in homes for the aged and the infirm, in King County, WA, came from Wuhan is indisputable.”
Trevor Bedford, sequencing scientist at the Fred Hutch Research Center, was therein cited in confirmation that, “The first case in the USA was … from a traveler directly returning from Wuhan to Snohomish County on Jan. 15.” But there was another traveler whose virus was related to that of Patient Zero, and who had, “exposed someone else to the virus in the period between Jan. 15 and Jan. 19, before they were isolated… After this point, community spread occurred and was undetected due to the CDC’s narrow case definition that required direct travel to China or direct contact with a known case to even be considered for testing. This lack of testing was a critical error and allowed an outbreak …” [Emphasis added.]
These days, Fauci fans can find Fauci-face socks, mugs, T-shits and devotional candles on Etsy, “the e-commerce equivalent of a hippie grandmother’s attic.” Surviving the Coronavirus calamity demands, however, that critics remember this:
Fauci was against masks and travel bans before he was for these, and had said not a word about zoonotic transmission: The Asian wet-market depravity. Late to the game, as usual, Dr. Fauci has finally called for shutdown to the barbaric, cruel, disease-breeding Asian wet markets.
The good doctor still persists, though, to voice odious, statist impulses as to the use of hydroxychloroquine on critically ill COVID patients. Many medical clinicians have called Dr. Fauci out for being dogmatically wrong about the critical mass of, yes, anecdotal evidence as to the usefulness of hydroxychloroquine—an old, tried-and-tested malaria drug—in reducing viral load, cell-penetration, as well as mitigating the calamitous cytokine-mediated inflammatory response in COVID patients.
Judging from his own reservations, Dr. Fauci would likely cheer Dr. Seema Yasmin, a CNN Corona commentator. She’s adamant about keeping hydroxychloroquine out of the reach of dying COVID patients until übermenschen like herself and her colleagues at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and CDC give it the go-ahead.
Dogmatic doctors here are making a categorical confusion between science-driven decision making and the individual’s autonomy and agency in charting his course in life and in death.
In a free society, the patient is sovereign. America is founded upon the idea of individual rights. The individual charts his destiny, not the doctor. On his death bed, the patient should be able to decide whether to try a promising but unproven palliative therapy.
In the rush to make stars of the CDC and the FDA state cartel, let us not forget the pill politburo’s role in indirectly killing Americans through one of the most protracted, protectionist and bureaucratic drug-approval protocols in the world.
As I wrote , once again, on March 5, “the Center for Disease Control [is] a cumbersome bureaucracy, which tightly controls both testing capacity and criteria. Such centralization is everywhere and always detrimental to the screening and segregating of the infected, and, ultimately, to disease containment.”
Kung Flu is a killer, all right, but so are the bureaucrats, national and international.
Oh, and sometimes—especially during a pandemic—ignoring reliably predictive analysis can be perilous, too.
Ilana Mercer has been writing a weekly, paleolibertarian column since 1999. She’s the author of Into the Cannibal’s Pot: Lessons for America From Post-Apartheid South Africa (2011) & The Trump Revolution: The Donald’s Creative Destruction Deconstructed” (June, 2016). She’s on Twitter, Facebook & Gab. Latest on YouTube