They Said They Would Slow the Spread

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by Jeffrey A. Tucker via Brownstone Institute

It’s been the most astonishing two weeks for American public life, with so many prescient changes, from new censorships, admissions, backtracks, experts speaking out, public outrage, and what strikes me as a progressive unraveling of every orthodoxy imposed nearly two years ago. 

Not even the influential and powerful are in a position to defend what has happened to us. They seem to be gradually pulling away from public life, unable to say things that connect to what everyone knows. 

Above all else, what’s remarkable right now is the undeniable arrival of Covid to a degree to which hardly anyone could have imagined all that time ago, when so many experts set out to deploy their fabulous new system for stopping the spread of a disease. 

There was a goal (stop cases). There was a method (state compulsion). And there was a test (cases were supposed to go down and go away). There would be a war on a virus and the state would win! And now we look around and see the evidence of failure so pronounced, so impossible to deny, that we must face that which so many have worked so hard to deny for so long. 

The best way I can describe this is by observation. In the Northeast of the US, and in many other parts of the country, everywhere you go, right now, you see sick people milling around. They don’t admit it and they don’t talk about it with strangers simply because there is such shame attached to having Covid. They complain of a cold, of a flu, or just suffer in silence. But there it is. 

After nearly two years of work to control the spread, after brutal shutdowns of the whole country – shutdowns that happened two years too early, as judged by actual case trends (but of course lockdowns never should have been considered in the first place) – Covid is here. Not just here. It is everywhere. The case counts are beyond anything anyone on the planet could have imagined a year or two ago. The spikes make everything that came before look like child’s play. 

Here is the global chart. 

And we are talking really sick. Not so much death. Not even out-of-control hospitalization. We are talking about being sick in bed or walking around with misery. The nasty bug lasts maybe two days, maybe two weeks, maybe longer but it is vexing and wicked, not like a cold or flu but something more electric and strange. 

Which variant? Two weeks ago, the CDC wanted to blame it all on Omicron. That is no longer possible. Perhaps that constitutes 20%; we just do not know for sure because tracking is so weak. Most of it is evidently Delta, meaning very sick but with no serious loss of taste and smell. Most everyone eventually gets well, and that’s what happens here. 

We get to endemicity perhaps in a month or so and life will move on, my experts tell me, at least in some areas of the country. What’s striking and truly shocking is that all of the efforts, all of the propaganda, all of the astonishing spending and compulsion – the shutdowns, masking, size limits, travel restrictions, vaccination requirements, the track and trace, the endless testing, the enforcement, the intimidations, the censorship – and what do we have to show for it?

Lockdown architect Carter Mecher promised us as follows: “If you got everyone and locked each of them in their own room and didn’t let them talk to anyone, you would not have any disease.” They attempted a version of that, experimenting on the human population in ways without precedent. And let’s say that is true (it probably isn’t). That is not life. That is not society. That is not freedom. That is something else unimaginably horrific. 

It was unsustainable. They pushed their theory without regard to the history of public health or, really, the whole of human experience. And now, the true pandemic finally arrived. And what is it? There are a ton of sick people. People are calling in sick because they cannot come to work. Institutions are having to shut down, not because government closed them but because people are too sick to come to work. This is the normal course of events – exactly what one would expect in a pandemic. 

And it’s not just Covid. The head of an Indiana life insurance company reports that deaths among people aged 18-64 are up 40%, an astonishing increase. It’s suicide, drug overdoses, and every other manner of horror. And that’s just death. Many others are just sick from other things. 

I personally know dozens and they each know many dozens of more people in the Northeast right now who are down for the count, miserable and pathetic, but still testing negative for Covid. Why would this be? It’s because immune systems have decayed over two years. The lack of vitamin D, the lack of exposure to normal germs in life, the isolation and depression, the overconsumption of liquor and drugs – it’s all been a terrible drain on health. 

Meanwhile, the actual pandemic of Covid has certainly arrived. And it is far worse than the data indicated. Look at Massachusetts, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Connecticut, any of these states, and including some Southern and Midwestern states, and what you find is increases of 500-1,000% in cases. And keep in mind that these are just cases as discovered by official testing spots. 

Go to any CVS or Walgreens and you find long lines of people buying testing kits. If they are available. If they are not, the wait is weeks. They are $23 a kit and people are buying as many as possible. Why? Partially it’s because employers and schools are demanding negative tests, but it is also just curiosity. People are sick as dogs and want to confirm their illnesses. 

People are estimating that real cases are 50x to 100x what the official data say. 

But let’s talk now about a real scandal. When you are sick, you need treatment. Every competent medical professional I know is pretty darn sure that the best hope for dealing with Covid is a combination of Zinc, Vitamin D, and (sorry to mention the dreaded name) Ivermectin. This is not ideological. This is what experienced doctors are saying right now. I’m on many email lists with serious medical professionals and they are all saying the same thing. We can add HCQ to the list if you catch it early enough. 

But here’s the kicker – and let me be clear that I’m NOT giving ANY medical advice here, merely just reporting the sense of the community out there. What’s remarkable is that people are having a very difficult time getting these basic therapeutics. Vaccines are everywhere but things to make you well once the virus penetrates the vaccine? Those are hard to come by. 

There is a problem getting a prescription because state medical boards are actually barring people and preventing them from serving patients if they prescribe HCQ or Ivermectin, as incredible as that sounds. But once you get the prescription – if you have a doctor brave enough to risk it – finding a pharmacy to fill it is another challenge. 

Most people in the UK today are getting their therapeutics from India. Americans get them from Mexico. And some are shipping to the US and they are being distributed via gray markets for anyone who is lucky enough to have a contact. It’s a speakeasy nation but this time for distributing basic therapies. 

I feel like I’ve seen horrible things for almost two years now, and you feel the same way. But of all the scandals, and there are so many, this one seems to top the list, namely that once the real pandemic has arrived, there are no effective medicines that are widely available. Doctors are actually being blocked from doing their jobs. 

Beyond belief. But you know this. I’m sure you have your own stories. I suspect that many of our readers have encountered this virus for the first  time in the last two weeks and have dealt with the horrors of just getting basic medicines to get through this. 

The NIH has funded almost no serious trials of these generic drugs. It is not in the interest of pharmaceutical companies to fund them either. As a result, we are truly at a loss – nearly two years into a pandemic at a time when people need meds more than ever. 

Meanwhile, the FTC is spending its time cracking down on pharmacies that advertise that they have therapeutics available for people. They are sending cease and desist letters all over the country as a way of intimidating providers. I’ve seen these letters. They have invited me to post them but I’ve declined in the interest of keeping people out of trouble.  

One merciful upside to all of this is that there is no more talk of lockdowns. At last, even the experts are saying that society must function. Lockdowns are not even being considered. The whole country is fed up with the phony baloney enterprise of virus control. It did not and cannot work. 

Nearly two years ago, they deployed a new experiment in stopping a pathogen. It was a plan that was 15 years in the making, hatched by fanatics who imagined that state policy could outwit a virus. 

The wreckage was astonishing, and yet what was the payoff? Here we are today with a wave of sickness that defies every prediction, and with collateral damage beyond even the worst predictions (including my own). And the truth of this is all over the data that anyone can see and the stories that anyone can hear. 

The country is right now sicker than it has ever been in our lifetimes. 

What a stunning repudiation of state policy – the worst failing of public health and public policy perhaps in the history of the US if not the entire world. We are right now living in its last days. Remember these days, my friends. They are legion and mark what is likely the end of the great fiasco. 

And yet it is not really the end. There will be decades of hell to pay for what has happened to us. 

To learn more about Jeffrey Tucker’s ideas on liberty, check out his book Liberty or Lockdown.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

Reprinted with permission from Brownstone Institute.