Mid-Day Digest

Mar. 13, 2020

THE FOUNDATION

“Men, to act with vigour and effect, must have time to mature measures, and judgment and experience, as to the best method of applying them. They must not be hurried on to their conclusions by the passions, or the fears of the multitude. They must deliberate, as well as resolve.” —Joseph Story (1833)

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IN TODAY’S DIGEST

FEATURED ANALYSIS

The Great Coronavirus Canceling

Thomas Gallatin

Some are calling it a responsible action in light of the threat — postponements, partial shutdowns, and outright cancellations as fear of the coronavirus has spread across the nation. Certainly, what has become known as “social distancing” to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 is needed (along with basic hygiene), but when does responsible action become panic-induced overreaction?

What we know of the novel COVID-19 is that it is highly contagious and poses the most serious threat to the elderly and those with chronic health problems. The World Health Organization, which has officially labeled it a pandemic, notes that for at least 80% of those who contract the virus, their symptoms will be “mild” — fever and a cough. The biggest concern is overloading the healthcare system, which means that isolation has become the go-to response.

Cancellation of all public events seemed to really take off with the NBA announcing on Wednesday evening — immediately after President Donald Trump’s speech meant to quell fears — that it was suspending all games indefinitely. The following day, all other major sports leagues followed suit. Simultaneously, the popular March Madness college basketball tournament followed the cancel campaign, which then bled over into classes — colleges and universities all over the nation have suspended classes and are having students take their courses online.

Then Disney announced it is closing its theme parks, all of New York City’s Broadway theaters have canceled shows and shut down, and the Mormon Church has canceled all church gatherings worldwide for at least a month.

With all these cancellations and the rippling impact it’s having on everyone, the greater problem caused by COVID-19 may not be health related but rather economic devastation.

Here is just one example we in our humble shop have experienced thus far. For months we have been planning and preparing to host a booth at the upcoming NRA Annual Meeting in Nashville. That event was canceled on Thursday over coronavirus concerns. That’s certainly a hit to our small business, but others are faring far worse.

Schools have closed their facilities all across the country, instructing students to stay home and take their classes online. What are families with two working parents supposed to do — leave their children home alone? And, like it or not, many kids get one or even two meals a day from their school, adding another hardship for these families.

Or what about all the businesses that depend upon sports leagues and the entertainment industry? How many restaurants and hotels will have to cut staff or reduce hours because there are no games or public entertainment attracting people, or because people are simply self-isolating? And that’s not to mention the bear market, which has cost millions of Americans a significant chunk of their retirement savings. (That’s why the Federal Reserve announced it will pump $1.5 trillion into short-term markets for stabilization.) The economic ripple effect of these mass cancellations after all the recent market volatility is already enormous.

However, much like the 2008 recession, those who will feel the least impact are mainstream-media talkingheads and DC politicians. Worse, they’ll be the ones to tell us what a great job they did when this is all over. In the meantime, hang tight, keep calm, take care of your family and neighbors, and wash your hands.

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The Coronavirus Cure Is Killing Us

Mark Alexander

Given that the current viral fear pandemic besieging our nation is a medical issue, let me draw a rough healthcare analogy.

If a woman goes to her doctor and tells him that she is having chest pain, she should get ready for a battery of tests, especially if she is well insured. One reason for all those tests is that the physician wants to help determine the cause and will call in other specialists who will keep ordering tests until the cause can be identified and the risk quantified. If it turns out to be a heart condition, a proper course of treatment can be determined. But if the physician assumes it is heartburn with no further assessment, sends the patient out the door with a roll of antacids, and that patient dies of congestive heart failure in the parking lot, there is an enormous liability, not to mention the fact the patient is dead.

In the case of COVID-19, the diagnosis is out of order. The mainstream media is playing the medical team who worry the patient to death, the politicians are playing role of the doctor trying to cover their rear end, and Americans are the patient being subjected to all the tests.

Here in Tennessee, there is another analogy.

If weather reporters predict a big snow (“big” is relative), knee-jerk school administrators close schools. This creates a significant local disruption and financial burden on working parents and the businesses that employ them. This is particularly true in the case of lower-income single parents. The administrators force these closures because of liability — if a bus driver or parent has an accident on a slippery road trying to get kids to school, they can be held legally liable. In the meantime, the snow panic results in a consumer run on basic necessities, and the accidents mount up because people are still out and about.

In the nationwide viral fear pandemic currently sweeping our country, the “weather predictors” represent the mainstream media, the “administrators” represent the politicians, and the “working parents” represent anyone with a job, particularly actual working parents and their families. On those occasions when the weather prognosticators were right, the administrators can claim they made wise decisions that protected many people. However, more than a few times, the snow never fell (insert eye rolls here).

Now, as we have written repeatedly, this will be a bad flu season — it is not just heartburn and the snow is going to fall. In the U.S., there have already been 26,000 flu deaths this season, and WuFlu will push those numbers higher. It may even be a record year with more than 60,000 deaths, as was the case in the 2017-18 flu season.

When COVID-19 viral infections and deaths accumulate — and they will — politicians have attempted to indemnify themselves from voter liability, regardless of the burden they have created across the nation for working men and women and their families. And in two months, when the threat has subsided and the fear dissipated, the politicos and their Beltway media echo chambers will be preening their feathers, reminding you that if you survived WuFlu, you owe them an eternal debt of gratitude for saving your life, regardless of the price you and the rest of the nation paid for the cure.

But is the current cure right-sized for the illness?

The fact is that all the extraordinary measure taken to, in effect, shut down the nation under the auspices of “social distancing” will help mitigate the spread of coronavirus and the rate of COVID-19 cases and deaths. That will buy us additional time to develop treatment regimens and come up with a vaccine — but at what price? This viral contagion is already nationwide, and it will continue to creep until the weather changes.

All the coming political self-congratulations aside, the response to coronavirus is a case study of the most grossly negligent media-driven panic in decades, and it’s indicative of the degree to which the MSM can drive fear and panic.

The WuFlu viral fear pandemic is the biggest load of crap ever dumped on American workers. They and their families are absorbing the financial shock of this monumental malfeasance, and the nonstop 24/7 news cycle is responsible. Every media talkinghead fomenting the fear and those politicians who are using it as political fodder should be exiled to Wuhan.

As one of our editors noted this morning, “We founded a nation out of wilderness, settled the great untamed West, survived a Civil War and two World Wars, and a Great Depression between them. But today we seem like a nation of chicken littles.”

As President Donald Trump reminded us Wednesday: “No nation is more prepared or more resilient than the United States. We have the best economy, the most advanced healthcare, and the most talented doctors, scientists, and researchers anywhere in the world. We are all in this together. We must put politics aside, stop the partisanship, and unify together as one nation and one family. As history has proven time and time again, Americans always rise to the challenge and overcome adversity.”

And we will again.

Fear not. Follow the fundamental preventive guidelines we provided in our comprehensive and updated COVID-19 contagion resource and response page, “The WuFlu and You.”

Panic is not a strategy — unless you are a Democrat wanting to defeat Trump.

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Unhappy Birthday: ObamaCare Turns 10

Brian Mark Weber

Back in 2010, Barack Obama boasted about his new healthcare plan, “If you like the plan you have, you can keep it. If you like the doctor you have, you can keep your doctor, too. The only change you’ll see are falling costs as our reforms take hold.”

It all sounded too good to be true … because it was a BIG lie. And yet Obama and his fellow Democrats kept repeating that lie, along with the fiction that a massive government takeover of healthcare would somehow reduce the federal deficit.

In fact, ObamaCare’s bureaucracy is now eating up a higher percentage of national spending on health, premiums have skyrocketed (including those for employer-provided coverage), deductibles have increased, and patients have little say over which doctors they can see.

As Chris Talgo writes in The Hill, “Sadly, since Obamacare’s inception one decade ago, the vast majority of Americans are not better off in terms of their health insurance costs and health care access. Obamacare has failed miserably because it lacks free-market principles and is a one-size-fits all, centrally planned boondoggle.” Talgo adds, “In the next decade, and for decades to come, the American health care system would function much more optimally if patients, not bureaucrats, were allowed to take control of their health care decisions.”

It’s no wonder that more Americans than ever before are without health insurance.

Even the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services assert that despite ObamaCare’s promises to provide affordable health insurance, the law failed to control costs. As a result, “These data show how Obamacare created an entirely new class of uninsured individuals, among those with middle to higher incomes who don’t qualify for government subsidies and can’t afford coverage because of skyrocketing premiums.”

And what about those tired complaints from Democrats that ObamaCare would’ve been just fine had it not been for Republican interference, and that it’s President Donald Trump’s fault for tinkering with an engine that was running smoothly?

Actually, the ObamaCare engine wouldn’t start from day one — because it was nothing more than a bunch of bad parts thrown together under the hood of a shiny car.

The editors at Issues & Insight write, “None of Obamacare’s failings can be blamed on Republican attempts to sabotage the law. Double-digit premiums were the norm long before President Donald Trump entered the White House. Most of the heavily subsidized non-profit ‘co-op’ plans — which were supposed to keep premiums in check — had already failed. The Republicans’ repeal of the individual mandate had no impact on enrollment. Nor did expanding ‘short-term’ insurance plans that bypass Obamacare’s massive and costly regulatory regime.”

After such an epic failure, we might rightly expect Democrats to hang their collective heads in shame. After all, every single aspect of ObamaCare turned out to be the opposite of what they promised. But Democrats have no shame.

And let’s be honest: ObamaCare was never really supposed to do anything other than begin the fundamental transformation of the world’s best healthcare system into a fully socialized one.

That’s why presumptive Democrat presidential nominee Joe Biden is today spouting the same old lies. On the campaign trail this year, the former vice president promised, “If you like your health care plan, your employer-based plan, you can keep it. If in fact you have private insurance, you can keep it.”

What’s the old saying? Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.

Indeed, shame on all of us if we buy into the Democrats’ BIG lie once again.

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China’s Rampant Human-Rights Abuses

Michael Swartz

It’s a litany that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has called the “stain of the century,” so it was no surprise that the Chinese government was once again called on the carpet by the recent release of the State Department’s annual Country Reports on Human Rights Practices.

In his remarks announcing the latest report, Pompeo singled out China, as well as Iran, Venezuela, and Cuba. In China’s case, Pompeo noted the ubiquitous use of surveillance on citizens, harsh treatment of dissidents, and imprisonment of religious minorities such as the Uighurs. (It’s also been reported that the Uighurs are unwillingly filling in for workers too sick from the Wuhan coronavirus to work in factories such as those owned by Apple and Nike.)

Last year’s unrest in Hong Kong also drew the attention of the State Department, which categorized problems in nearly 200 nations and territories around the globe in its 2019 Country Report. Like those of its cousins on the Chinese mainland, Hong Kong’s issues included police brutality and restrictions on political participation. Predictably, government puppets in Hong Kong countered countered that they were only responding to an “unprecedented” situation that “seriously endangered people’s personal safety, public order, and security.” This aligns neatly with Beijing’s longstanding reaction to American reporting on its human-rights abuses — a reaction that typically includes both denial and misdirection to claims of American poverty, homelessness, and rampant imprisonment.

The brutal Chinese regime does have some allies, though. Amnesty International director Tarah Demant called the latest State Department report “politically motivated,” telling the Trump-hating Washington Post, “I don’t remember the Obama or Bush administration using this opportunity to make political attacks at their perceived political adversaries. That does not help improve the human rights situation on the ground in China and Iran, where Amnesty International has real human rights concerns.”

Got that? The human-rights abuses are very real, but let’s not talk about them.

Another powerful ally for China comes in the person of former Vice President and presumptive Democrat Party presidential nominee Joe Biden. Even setting aside his son Hunter’s various Chinese business interests over the years, Biden’s record on China is worrisome. We were reminded of this by Sen. Tom Cotton, whose National Review op-ed this week contended, “Biden’s announcement of his campaign alone was enough to encourage Beijing suddenly to take a harder line on trade negotiations with the Trump administration. As Biden’s star seemed to fade, China suddenly got easier to deal with, striking a ‘Phase 1’ deal with us in January.”

“It’s a safe prediction that they are about to take a tougher line again,” added Cotton, who called Biden “China’s choice for President.”

Fully half of our nation’s people are too young to remember the iconic image of a lone human-rights protester in Tiananmen Square facing down a column of Chinese tanks. Since that 1989 massacre of reform-minded young people, China has, by hook and by crook, grown its economic powerhouse thanks in large part to American manufacturing that fled our shores, enticed by the promise of cheap labor and a huge new market.

But while the ChiComs gladly took our money, they didn’t embrace our deeply held belief in the rights of man. For that, many millions of their citizens suffer merely for having been born Chinese. The ChiComs’ record of abuse deserves our continued condemnation, and those who risk everything to expose it deserve our unending admiration.

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SCOTUS Reinstates ‘Remain in Mexico’ Asylum Policy

Thomas Gallatin

President Donald Trump’s “Remain in Mexico” asylum policy was reinstated all along the U.S.-Mexico border as the Supreme Court overturned an injunction by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals against the policy on Wednesday. The Court’s ruling does not mean the end of challenges to Trump’s asylum policy, but it ensures that for the time being it will continue. And not a moment too soon, as thousands of migrants still sit waiting just across the border. As a senior U.S. Customs and Border Protection official observed, “Within hours of the issuance of the Ninth Circuit’s decision, mass gatherings on the Mexican side of the border were determined to be a safety risk to the traveling public and CBP personnel, and operational decisions were made to temporarily suspend port operations in certain locations.”

Furthermore, with the fast-spreading coronavirus threat, the last thing the country needs is thousands of asylum seekers released into the U.S. population. Speaking of COVID-19, will Democrats now start caring about border security?

Since the policy has been in effect, the number of migrants arriving at the U.S. southern border each month as decreased by 75%. The Wall Street Journal reports, “In the past year, the government has sent more than 61,000 migrants back across the border, where they have been required to wait in violent Mexican border cities while their claims for protection are reviewed, a process that can take months. Immigration court data show that many people placed in the program, as many as half, have since abandoned their asylum claims.” In other words, the policy works.

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Blinded by Hate

Grassroots perspective by Roger Helle

It has been interesting watching the primaries and caucuses of the Democrat Party. It’s come down to two old angry white men.

Bernie Sanders seems to be mad all the time, waving his hands and yelling about how evil the country is. So, to save it, he’s going to tear it all down and start over.

Joe Biden is pretty angry too, which is surprising because just two weeks ago they were preparing his campaign’s obituary. None the less, he seems to go ballistic whenever someone asks a question he doesn’t want to hear. Whether it’s a young woman, senior citizen, or construction worker, Joe flies off the handle and resorts to name-calling. I’m not a politician (thank you Jesus!) but that doesn’t seem like the best way to win over voters.

Everyone seems angry! Nancy Pelosi is angry because Donald Trump is president and, she says, civilization as we know it is in great peril! And here I thought global warming would destroy us. Adam Schiff never stopped being angry since the entire impeachment scam began. That’s probably why he told us in the Senate chamber we couldn’t trust voters to vote the way he wants, so Trump needed to be impeached.

Chuck Schumer stood outside the Supreme Court threatening two Supreme Court justices with violence if they vote the wrong way. You can slice and dice his words to try and defend him, but it was a threat. Fortunately, he’s a Democrat and there will be no consequences, just as Pelosi faced none after tearing up the State of the Union speech. Both are violations of written laws.

During the same rally outside the Supreme Court, activists ranted like lunatics about women having the right to choose what they do to their bodies. No mention was made of the really innocent victims — the preborn children.

What’s interesting is the case before the justices had nothing to do with eliminating abortion. It’s about doctors having access to a hospital in the event the abortion procedure goes badly. (I mean, worse than usual.) Aren’t progressives all about saving the woman’s life? Yet, they were all unhinged, screaming and yelling and waving signs saying abortion is a Catholic value. Who thought up that one?

The coronavirus is giving the Left more ammunition to attack the president. Trump is racist and xenophobic for stopping flights from China. However, in retrospect, it turns out to have been the right decision. A young Hispanic woman on the Denver City Council encouraged people with the virus to go to Trump rallies. No comment from the media.

These are just a few of the outrageous things happening in our country, fueled by the Left’s rage and anger at losing the 2016 election. The network talkingheads have spewed hate, fake news and garbage day after day after day for over three years now.

What are leftists offering Americans as a vision of the future if they are elected? There are no plans to make this country a place where we can live and thrive together. Hate, greed, and envy are not a winning message for normal voters in this country. You’ve overplayed your hand, Democrats. We know who you really are!

Something to think about?

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NEWS EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

Jordan Candler

  • “WE’RE CLOSE”: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi aims for coronavirus package deal with White House today (Washington Examiner)

  • NOT A CHECK: Federal Reserve to inject $1.5 trillion into markets to offset economic impact of coronavirus (National Review)

  • COMMUNIST DISINFORMATION: China government spokesman says U.S. military may have brought virus to China (Reuters)

  • A RELUCTANT DECISION: NRA cancels annual meeting (The Washington Free Beacon)

  • MORE SPORTS FALLOUT: Major League Baseball announced Thursday it will cancel the rest of spring training and delay the start of the regular season for at least two weeks amid the coronavirus outbreak. MLB followed in the footsteps of the National Basketball Association and Major League Soccer in deciding to put their season on hold. The NBA and NHL both suspended their seasons. (Fox News)

  • PRIME MINISTER IN ISOLATION FOR TWO WEEKS: Justin Trudeau’s wife tests positive for new coronavirus (AP)

  • RETALIATION: U.S. launches strikes in Iraq against Iranian-backed militias after attack that killed coalition troops (The Washington Post)

  • OH, BY THE WAY: Buried from Trump Tower meeting: translator telling FBI “no collusion” (RealClearInvestigations)

  • SEVEN MONTHS TOO LATE: 1619 Project leader admits she got it wrong (Washington Examiner)

  • “I HAVE DECIDED TO STEP DOWN”: U.S. Soccer president Carlos Cordeiro resigns amid women’s national team pay dispute (ESPN)

  • BORROWING DENIED: Had enough? Taxed-enough-already Californians turn down higher taxes, debt (AP)

  • POLICY: The case against a coronavirus stimulus plan (E21)

  • POLICY: No, the Fed is not cutting a check to banks (National Review)

  • HUMOR: Parents worried they’ll have to raise their own children as government schools shut down (The Babylon Bee)

For more of today’s editors’ choice headlines, visit In Our Sights.

The Patriot Post is a certified ad-free news service, unlike third-party commercial news sites linked on this page, which may also require a paid subscription.

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VIDEOS

Video: AOC Says Coronavirus Causing Racism — Ben Shapiro describes a video from AOC on how people are no longer going to Chinese restaurants due to racism associated with the coronavirus.

Video: U.S. Soccer Tells Women’s Team Its Pay Gap Is a Skill Gap — The national team doesn’t have legal standing under the Equal Pay Act, the federation contends.

Video: An Unbreakable Code: Navajo Code Talkers — The Marine Corps needed an “unbreakable” code for its island-hopping campaign in the Pacific.

BEST OF RIGHT OPINION

For more of today’s columns, visit Right Opinion.

SHORT CUTS

Insight: “It is when power is wedded to chronic fear that it becomes formidable.” —author Eric Hoffer (1902-1983)

Food for thought: “BTW, great call on that 20 year campaign to promote high density urban living and public transportation, smart people.” —David Burge

Observations: “Trump [Wednesday] night said, ‘This is a major government response to the foreign virus,’ and this immediately lead people in the media to whine about the fact that Trump said that the Wuhan virus is a foreign virus. … Why is that a problem? Is that an element of xenophobia? Seriously? This is what you’re focused on … that Trump points out that another major virus comes from China and that maybe this will have implications on U.S. policy and yet your initial takeaway is, ‘That’s Trump being a racist against Chinese people’? That’s really where you’re going with this?” —The Daily Wire’s Ben Shapiro

Upright: “The President can fly Air Force One over major cities and dump freshly printed hundred dollar bills out of the belly of the plane, but if people think they’re going to get the coronavirus, they still are not going to take that cash and go shop, eat out or mingle in large crowds. They won’t even go to the bank to deposit it. They will, like with the toilet paper, simply stockpile it till the crisis is over. Before any stimulus can work, the public must trust the health care response. … Unfortunately for all of us, there is a bipartisan problem in Washington. Both sides have ‘electionitis,’ and the only cure is denying the other side any sort of public successes in order to beat them in November. It is not yet known how many Americans will die in the process.” —columnist Erick Erickson

Non compos mentis I: “You know, since the beginning of the COVID-19 outbreak, we have seen not only the spreading of the virus but also a rapid spreading of racism and xenophobia.” —Rep. Ayanna Pressley

Non compos mentis II: “Labeling COVID-19 a ‘foreign virus’ does not display accountability for the misjudgments that have taken thus far by the Trump administration.” —Joe Biden

Grand delusions: “I get the sense that this is not only the low point of the Trump presidency but the low point of the American presidency ever. Has any president ever been this overmatched by a crisis?” —New York Times columnist David Brooks

And last… “This started in China, has become a global crisis. They stifled the flow of information. Lied. Stopped doctors and health experts from talking about it. They weren’t transparent and still aren’t. This is their Chernobyl. They deserve massive blame and should get it.” —The Daily Wire’s Matt Walsh

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TODAY’S MEME

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For more of today’s memes, visit the Memesters Union.

TODAY’S CARTOON

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For more of today’s cartoons, visit the Cartoons archive.


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