August 2nd, 2021 3-5PM ET
Monday on The Robert Scott Bell Show:
White House frustrated with ‘hyperbolic’ and ‘irresponsible’ Delta variant coverage, sources say The White House is frustrated with what it views as alarmist, and in some instances flat-out misleading, news coverage about the Delta variant. That’s according to two senior Biden administration officials I spoke with Friday, both of whom requested anonymity to candidly offer their opinion on coverage of the CDC data released that suggests vaccinated Americans who become infected with the Delta coronavirus variant can infect others as easily as those who are unvaccinated. At the heart of the matter is the news media’s focus on breakthrough infections, which the CDC has said are rare. In some instances, poorly framed headlines and cable news chyrons wrongly suggested that vaccinated Americans are just as likely to spread the disease as unvaccinated Americans. But that isn’t quite the case. Vaccinated Americans still have a far lower chance of becoming infected with the coronavirus and, thus, they are responsible for far less spread of the disease. “The media’s coverage doesn’t match the moment,” one of the Biden officials told me. “It has been hyperbolic and frankly irresponsible in a way that hardens vaccine hesitancy. The biggest problem we have is unvaccinated people getting and spreading the virus.”
Fully Vaccinated People Accounted for 74% of Infections in Massachusetts COVID Nearly three-fourths of the infections in a recent Massachusetts COVID-19 outbreak were breakthrough cases. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released a study on Friday that found 346 of the 469 reported coronavirus infections occurred in people who were fully vaccinated. The outbreak happened between July 3–17 in Barnstable County as large summer gatherings took place in Provincetown. Of the breakthrough cases, 274 were symptomatic, while four people were hospitalized. One other infected individual who had not been vaccinated was also hospitalized. Testing found that 90% of specimens from 133 patients contained the Delta variant. The most common side effects were cough, headache, sore throat, muscle pain, and fever. No deaths were reported. “This finding is concerning and was a pivotal discovery leading to CDC’s updated mask recommendation,” CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said in a statement. “The masking recommendation was updated to ensure the vaccinated public would not unknowingly transmit virus to others, including their unvaccinated or immunocompromised loved ones.”
Questions of The Day!
Hello RSB show, I have a question about an article I saw you present in the show notes in either June or July. It had to do with critically thinking about the Covid virus and those of us who choose not to get the vaccine. I remember a comment in the article about “us“ not being stupid about it but actually doing our own research and coming to our own conclusions. I’m sorry I can’t remember much of anything else, but I sure would love to get my hands on that article again. Thank you for all you do, I listen every day
MIT Study: Vaccine Hesitancy Is ‘Highly Informed, Scientifically Literate’ and ‘Sophisticated’ https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/mit-study-vaccine-hesitancy-highly-informed-literate-chocholous/
Where can we get that clip you had of Fauci flip flopping? Can you share that? That was the best!
Apple removes anti-vaxx dating app Unjected from the App Store for ‘inappropriately’ referring to the pandemic. The app’s owners say it’s censorship. Apple on Saturday removed Unjected, a dating-and-community app for unvaccinated people, from its App Store, in a move that the app’s owners likened to censorship. “Apparently, we’re considered ‘too much’ for sharing our medical autonomy and freedom of choice,” Shelby Thomson, Unjected’s founder, said in a video posted on Instagram on Saturday. “So, of course, Apple removed us.” The app violated Apple’s policies for COVID-19 content, an Apple spokesperson told Insider on Saturday. The company cited published interviews in which Unjected’s founders said their app was for “likeminded unvaccinated individuals.” Unjected previously had been rejected from the App Store, but Apple reinstated it after updates, the tech giant said. The founders then asked Unjected users to avoid anti-vaccination buzzwords words, including “jabbed” and “microchip.” By trying to trick Apple’s reviewers, the app again violated App Store policies, the Apple spokesperson said. Bloomberg News on Saturday reported that Apple removed the app after being contacted by a reporter. Unjected posted a screenshot of the Bloomberg News story, saying: “We must use our voices. We are fighting the censorship of our freedoms and we won’t stop.” Unjected launched in May as a dating app — one Twitter user called it “OK Q-Pid” — but had recently rolled out additional features. One was a list of businesses that “respect our autonomy and promote freedom.”
Australia deploys helicopters & soldiers to order people to GO HOME in one world’s strictest Covid lockdowns GUNG ho Aussie politicians have deployed the army and helicopters to order people to go home in what is one of the world’s strictest Covid lockdowns. One man caught a chopper shouting out stay-at-home orders from a loudspeaker and shared it online. In footage, a blue and white helicopter circles the Aussie who blurts out “What the F**K!” as he’s warned that local police would find him and issue a fine. Australia is enforcing one of the most severe lockdowns in the world and recently called in the military to help enforce its “Zero Covid” strategy. Under the Government’s policy, rule-breakers caught ignoring the latest regulations will be slugged with a £265 ($500) fine. Borders remain shut until the percentage of the population to receive both jabs jumps from the current measly number of 17 per cent to 80 per cent. On Saturday, up to 1,300 police swarned Sydney and set up roadblocks in a massive show of force to stop a repeat of last week’s violent anti-lockdown protest. Some 300 unarmed army personnel will also help police go door-to-door to ensure people who have tested positive are self-isolating.
YouTube’s Sky News Australia suspension ‘disturbing’ assault on freedom of thought The freedom to engage in debate and challenge conventional thinking and wisdoms were not always accepted as human rights. Philosophically the notion has existed for millennia with the most modern interpretations gaining their foothold in Greek debating chambers. It has changed shape frequently and even been snuffed out by leaders of more totalitarian persuasions. If a society was lucky, it returned. If not, poverty, starvation and horror tended to follow. Holodomor, Auschwitz and Mao, are just three historical examples. So important is your right to communicate freely, without interference, that it was declared a human right in 1948. “Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers,” Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights reads. This human right to be free to share your opinions through “any media”, whether it be criticisms of government policy, or disputing conventional thinking, is nearly absolute. But it is also fickle.
Vaccine mandates will backfire. People will resist even more. In recent weeks, calls for vaccine mandates have increasingly been heard: In a column headlined “Stop pleading with anti-vaxxers and start mandating vaccinations,” The Washington Post’s Max Boot implored President Biden to “stop making reasonable appeals to those who will not listen to reason.” Former Health and Human Services secretary Kathleen Sebelius lamented that “we’re going to tiptoe around mandates,” and she’s “kind of over that.” A coalition of medical professional organizations, including the American Medical Association, has asked for “all health care and long-term care employers to require their employees to be vaccinated against COVID-19.” Meanwhile, there’s a top-down push to get reluctant citizens vaccinated: The White House and the Department of Education partnered with colleges and universities on a “Covid-19 College Vaccine Challenge.” On Monday, the Department of Veterans Affairs became the first federal agency to mandate vaccinations for more than 100,000 of its employees. On Thursday, Biden announced that civilian federal workers must be vaccinated or submit to regular coronavirus testing.
Tenants prepare for unknown as eviction moratorium ends Tenants saddled with months of back rent are facing the end of the federal eviction moratorium Saturday, a move that could lead to millions being forced from their homes just as the highly contagious delta variant of the coronavirus is rapidly spreading. The Biden administration announced Thursday it would allow the nationwide ban to expire, saying it wanted to extend it due to rising infections but its hands were tied after the U.S. Supreme Court signaled in June that it wouldn’t be extended beyond the end of July without congressional action. House lawmakers on Friday attempted, but failed, to pass a bill to extend the moratorium even for a few months. Some Democratic lawmakers had wanted it extended until the end of the year. “August is going to be a rough month because a lot of people will be displaced from their homes,” said Jeffrey Hearne, director of litigation Legal Services of Greater Miami, Inc. “It will be at numbers we haven’t seen before. There are a lot of people who are protected by the … moratorium.” The moratorium, put in place by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in September to try to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, is credited with keeping 2 million people in their homes over the past year as the pandemic battered the economy, according to the Princeton University’s Eviction Lab. Eviction moratoriums will remain in place in New York, New Jersey, Maryland, Illinois, California and Washington, D.C., until they expire later this year.
Obama defies CDC guidance by inviting 500 people to his celebrity-studded 60th birthday party at his $12m mansion on Martha’s Vineyard: Pearl Jam will perform and guests including Steven Spielberg will be served by 200 staff Former President Barack Obama has come under fire for his plans to host nearly 500 people at his Martha’s Vineyard mansion for his 60th birthday, despite a nationwide rise in COVID cases. The former president is set to turn 60 on August 4, and is said to be planning a large soiree at his 7,000-square-foot mansion in the Edgarton section of Martha’s Vineyard next weekend. An official familiar with the plans told Axios that there are now 475 confirmed guests for the party – including Oprah Winfrey, George Clooney and Steven Spielberg – with more than 200 staff members. All guests will have to be COVID tested and vaccinated and the party will be held outdoors on the Obama’s $12 billion 30-acre waterfront property. But Francis Collins, director of the National Institutes of Health, said Sunday on CNN that big parties should be avoided. ‘If you’re talking about a small party like I might have at my house for six or eight people who are all fully vaccinated, I do not believe, at this point, we need to put masks on to be next to each other,’ he said. ‘But if there were 100 people, and, of course, how are you really going to be sure about people’s vaccination status?’ There will also be a ‘COVID coordinator’ to ensure all proper protocols are being followed, but it remains unclear what proof of a negative COVID test or a vaccine will be required, and whether guests will be required to wear masks. The party comes just one month after nearby Provincetown saw a surge in coronavirus cases from the July 4 holiday.