November 2nd, 2020 3-5PM ET
Monday on The Robert Scott Bell Show:
Trump Hints At Firing Fauci After Election All pretense of Donald Trump getting along with Dr. Anthony Fauci, who has advised six presidents in his nearly four decade tenure as head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, is gone after the president hinted that he may fire the long-serving official after the November 3 election at a rally Sunday. Fauci and Trump have butted heads countless times over the government’s handling of the Covid-19 pandemic, for which Fauci is supposed to be a leading member. Fauci has ruffled feathers repeatedly by calling out falsehoods and misinformation coming from the White House, including claims that the pandemic is going to end quickly (it’s not), and last week revealed that Trump had not attending the Covid-19 task force in months. In the Washington Post interview, Fauci said the U.S. needed to make an “abrupt change” in its Covid-19 approach, and questioned the White House’s reliance on Scott Atlas, who is an expert in neuroradiology and not infectious diseases, as an advisor for the pandemic response. The White House’s response was scathing, accusing Fauci of unacceptable behaviour, breaching behavioral norms and playing politics mere days before an election.
Only Science-Deniers Believe In A National Mask Mandate It’s now a crime in many places in the United States not to wear a face mask. These misdemeanors, like simple assault or trespassing, are punishable by fines and even jail. At the moment, these are state and local matters, but if Joe Biden is elected president, he has promised to declare a national mask mandate. Although such a mandate would likely be ruled unconstitutional in the courts under the 10th Amendment, which reserves such authority to states instead of the national government, the stakes are ramping up with power-hungry politicians in positions of authority. It’s more urgent than ever that mask policy be based on scientific evidence. Scientists have long tested the value of masks for the general public. The results are not, on the whole, in favor of masks for general use because there are just too many trade-offs and exceptions. Besides, not all masks are created equal. A clean, properly-fitted N-95 respirator and face shield worn, and never touched while worn, by a trained health professional is one thing. A dirty cloth neck gaiter worn begrudgingly at the gym is quite another.
Coronavirus News: Gov. Cuomo ends quarantine list, switches to testing plan for visitors – Visitors must test negative before and after traveling to New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced New York is moving away from the Tri-State Travel Advisory and will now require people coming to the state to test negative. The newly unveiled quarantine policy will do away with the current Tri-State Travel Advisory list, and now mandates that anyone visiting the state must test negative or quarantine for 14 days with the exception of residents from contiguous states New Jersey, Connecticut and Pennsylvania. There will be no quarantine list, there will be no metrics,” Cuomo said. “If you are coming into New York within three days you must have tested negative. Once you arrive in New York, you must quarantine for three days and can take a test on the fourth day.” Travelers must also have proof that they tested negative upon arrival, and must quarantine for three days. Cuomo says that if on the fourth day you test negative, you’re released from quarantine. However, if a person tests positive, they must remain quarantined. The governor also outlined scenarios for New Yorkers who travel outside of the state. He says that New York residents can travel to another state for 24 hours or less, come back and take a test within four days upon arrival.
Dr. Scott Atlas, White House Coronavirus Task Force adviser, apologizes for interview with Russian propaganda network Dr. Scott Atlas, an adviser on the White House Coronavirus Task Force, apologized after appearing in an interview with Russian state broadcaster RT, just days before Election Day. In his apology, Atlas claimed he was unaware RT was a registered foreign agent. “I recently did an interview with RT and was unaware they are a registered foreign agent. I regret doing the interview and apologize for allowing myself to be taken advantage of. I especially apologize to the national security community who is working hard to defend us.” — Scott W. Atlas (@SWAtlasHoover) November 1, 2020 RT is owned by Russian state-owned news agency RIA Novosti and subsidiary RT America is registered with the US Justice Department as an agent of the Russian government. The Kremlin uses RT to spread English-language propaganda to American audiences, and was part of Russia’s election meddling in 2016, according to a 2017 report from the US Office of the Director of National Intelligence. Twitter labeled a video from the Russian-state controlled broadcaster RT as election misinformation on Thursday. YouTube videos posted by RT carry the disclaimer: “RT is funded in whole or in part by the Russian government.”
Making health a central part of identity may improve mask compliance, other healthy behaviors Virtually everyone agrees it’s good to be healthy, but fewer people think of their health as a central part of their identity. New research from Iowa State University shows that encouraging people to think of health as an essential part of themselves also encourages healthier behaviors, including adherence to physical distancing and mask guidelines during the COVID-19 pandemic. The research, led by Beatriz Pereira, an assistant professor of marketing, appears in the Journal of the Association for Consumer Research. The publication describes two studies that gauged how individuals responded to messages aimed at encouraging them to elevate the goal of staying healthy to be a major part of their self-concept. The results showed that people who read material asking them to think of their health as a central part of their identity were more likely to wear masks and comply with physical distancing guidelines over the Memorial Day holiday. The results also highlighted differences in how political conservatives and liberals respond differently to public health messages. Pereira said the research could inform how public health officials and businesses encourage citizens to change their behaviors, particularly when those behaviors may conflict with other parts of their identity, such as political ideology.
Dismal U.S. Life Expectancy Trend Reflects Disconnect Between Dollars Spent On Healthcare And Value Produced Long before the Covid-19 pandemic struck, there were signs of structural inefficiencies and comparatively mediocre outcomes in the U.S. healthcare system. Most worrisome was the fact that decades of ever-rising healthcare expenditures haven’t led to a concomitant improvement in value, measured in terms of mortality and morbidity outcomes. In recent years U.S. deaths from Alzheimer’s, diabetes, suicides, stroke, and even heart and lung diseases have been rising at alarming rates. Furthermore, deaths from unintentional injuries, including drug and alcohol overdoses, have soared. With the exception of a very small (0.08%) increase in 2019, life expectancy in the U.S. has been falling since 2014, as the figure below shows. And prior to 2014, for several decades, the slope of the life expectancy curve was relatively flat. This is a trend not seen in any other Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) nation.
Trump Maligns Doctors And Outrages The AMA And Healthcare Professionals Career healthcare professionals are outraged by President Trump’s accusations, and they speak out to defend the honor and integrity of the profession. They’re the core of our essential workers, and they are fighting hard to save lives. Doctors, nurses, scientists and other healthcare professionals have been on the front lines of the Covid-19 pandemic since day one. But today they are fighting against more than a deadly virus. After attacks by President Donald Trump, many career medical professionals are speaking out to defend the honor and integrity of their profession. Trump made a baseless accusation that medical doctors are inflating Covid-19 deaths for financial gain. As evidenced in the video below, President Trump denigrates the integrity and honor of those in the medical profession and implies that doctors often lie about the true cause of deaths in order to game the system for monetary gain. Trump is accusing doctors and, by extension, the entire medical profession of fraud.
55% of Americans believe 2020 Election Day will be most stressful day of their lives! As if the coronavirus pandemic wasn’t giving Americans enough anxiety already, you may have heard there’s a presidential election this November. With political divisions reaching historical highs, a survey finds a majority of the country believe their most stressful day of 2020 hasn’t even arrived yet. The poll examining mental health reveals 55 percent of Americans think Election Day 2020 will be the most stress-filled day of their lives. The OnePoll survey examined the current mental health of 2,000 adults, focusing on the stress caused by COVID-19 and the presidential race. Nearly six in 10 people can’t imagine being more stressed than they already are this year, while 67 percent want the year to be over now. The study, commissioned by Feelmore Labs and Cove, reveals Millennials (61%) and members of Generation X (58%) are feeling the Election Day strain more than anyone else. Only one-third of Baby Boomers feel the same way about the upcoming vote.
Outcome of 2016 US election associated with poorer mental health in Clinton voters There were 54.6 million more days of poor mental health among adults in states that voted for Hillary Clinton in December 2016, compared to October 2016, according to a study published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine. No such increase in poor mental health following the 2016 US election was observed in states that voted for Donald Trump. The increase in average number of poor mental health days per person in Clinton-voting states largely persisted in the six months after the election. Comparing states in which Trump had received the most votes with states in which Clinton had received the most votes, a team of researchers from the University of California, San Francisco, USA, and Duke University, Durham, NC, USA found that in Clinton-voting states, the average number of days on which adults reported experiencing poor mental health in the last 30 days increased by 0.50 days, from 3.35 days in October to 3.85 days in December 2016. Brandon Yan, the corresponding author said: “The additional half a day per adult translated into 54.6 million more days of poor mental health in December 2016 alone for the 109.2 million adults living in Clinton-voting states.”
Decision to Dump Radioactive Water from the Fukushima Nuclear Disaster Site into the Ocean Sparks Alarm In mid-October, the Japanese government announced plans to dump water contaminated with radioactive isotopes from a nuclear disaster site in Fukushima, sparking alarm all over the world. Japanese news service Kyodo reported on October 16 that the Japanese government had announced that it would authorize the release of about a million tonnes of radioactive water into the ocean from the Daiichi nuclear power installation in Fukushima prefecture. Following the announcement, Greenpeace published a report stating the contaminated water contained “dangerous” levels of carbon-14, a radioactive isotope that can damage human DNA. Amidst concerns about the impact of the contaminated water on the environment and human health, however, some experts pointed out that it was difficult—if not impossible—to assess the true risk without knowing more about the government’s plans. Fukushima’s economically devastated fishing sector opposes any sort of plan that includes ocean disposal, which might contaminate their catch. Japan’s maritime neighbour South Korea expressed “serious concern” as well. On the other side of the Pacific Ocean, the news alarmed some locals on Vancouver Island, on Canada’s Pacific coast, some 7,300 km from Fukushima