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Posts tagged ‘face masks’

Mandatory Face Coverings’ Only Purpose Was Promoting Fear


REPORTED BY: HRAND TOOKMAN | APRIL 21, 2022

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/04/21/mandatory-face-coverings-only-purpose-was-promoting-fear/

woman in a face mask

A lot of people will claim the masks were about establishing and maintaining control. That’s fair, but it wasn’t their primary purpose.

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Now that a judge has stayed the federal mask mandate on public transportation, it’s important to have an honest accounting of what this entire mask situation was truly all about. A lot of people will make a lot of claims. A tiny sliver will continue to claim mask mandates actually helped mitigate the spread of Covid-19. They will be the outliers because, in terms of stopping the spread of Covid or any other virus, wearing a mask is the equivalent of doing a rain dance: it might make you feel better, and some quacks will tell you it works, but ultimately it does nothing except make you look foolish and give you a false sense of security. (Vaccine mandates were the modern equivalent of burning witches at the stake.)

It was all so stupid and foisted on us by people we’re supposed to trust, which is why we need this honest accounting of what it was really all about. A lot of people will claim the masks were about establishing and maintaining control. That’s fair, but it wasn’t their primary purpose. The primary purpose of the mask mandates was to make every person who wore one a walking advertisement for fear. If you were wearing a mask, then you were doing your job, because you had given up your right to free expression and replaced it with one, constant sentiment: “I’m afraid, and you should be too.”

That was the main purpose of the masks. That’s why they wanted everyone to keep wearing them. It was about control, yes, but far more than that, it was about promoting fear. That’s why they lied about the threat Covid poses. That’s why they inflated the number of deaths, counting so often all who died with as having died from. That’s why they convinced so many Americans that the threat of hospitalization or death is exponentially higher than it actually is. (For the record, the survival rate for Covid is 99.7 percent for unvaccinated adults, 99.9 percent for vaccinated adults, and 100 percent for unvaccinated children.)

All they did the entire time was work as hard as they could to promote as much fear as possible, and masks were an excellent weapon they could force on you to help spread their message of constant fear, division, and dehumanization. The mask stripped you of your right to free expression and replaced whatever you wanted to communicate with one single piece of speech: “Be afraid.”

That was the primary purpose. That’s why they were all so fired up about it. That’s why they were all so desperate for you and everybody else to wear them.

It’s important we have our heads around that because it will help us avoid letting them do it again in the future. It wasn’t just about control. It wasn’t just about dividing and dehumanizing us. It wasn’t just about turning us against each other and forcing us to deny science so we could devastate each other’s social, psychological, and emotional health.

All of those were welcome byproducts to the “public health experts” and other elites who to this day claim masking provides value. But the primary purpose was to promote fear, and to stifle your speech and expression so you perpetually signaled that fear to everyone else.

You were obedient, yes. But more than that, you were afraid. That was the message, whether you wanted to send it or not. It was the primary reason they made everyone wear them, and it’s important we never let them do that to us again.


Hrand Tookman is a Cleveland, Ohio native with a background in interpersonal communications. He writes with an objective of exposing media bias, and inspiring unity in defiance of so many forces today that thrive off of division.

The Centers for Disease Control’s Lies Have Destroyed Its Legitimacy


REPORTED BY: Dr. GREGG SCHMEDES | FEBRUARY 22, 2022

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/02/22/the-centers-for-disease-controls-lies-have-destroyed-its-legitimacy/

Centers for Disease Control headquarters

On August 6, 2021, the Centers for Disease Control released a report that the agency claimed showed “Vaccination Offers Higher Protection than Previous COVID-19 Infection.” This assertion came amidst a public battle with Sen. Rand Paul, as the CDC released this data from Kentucky, Paul’s home state.

Yet after indisputable scientific evidence continued to pile up in favor of natural immunity, the CDC finally capitulated on January 19, 2022, recognizing the superiority of natural immunity over vaccination alone: “Between May and November 2021, people who were unvaccinated and did not have a prior COVID-19 infection remained at the highest risk of infection and hospitalization, while those who were previously infected, both with, or without prior vaccination, had the greatest protection.”

The CDC’s reversal came after its previous discounting of natural immunity caused mass layoffs, nursing home resident isolation, and hospital staffing shortages. It must not be forgotten or overlooked, and the CDC must be held accountable.

Last summer, guided by the CDC, President Biden claimed, “If you’re vaccinated, you’re not going to be hospitalized, you’re not going to be in the IC unit, and you’re not going to die.” Biden also spread misinformation about vaccinations preventing the spread of Covid-19 by stating, “You’re not going to get Covid if you have these vaccinations.” 

Who is harmed the most by health misinformation produced by our president and his agencies? Those with low health literacy. Our rich-poor gap is growing in this country and lying about health issues only exacerbates it.

A Positive Test Doesn’t Always Mean Infectiousness

A deeper dive into the August natural immunity study reveals methodology that can be recognized as illogical, even to those without medical experience. The CDC researchers created two groups. The case group included people who tested positive in 2020 and then tested positive again during a two-month window in 2021. The control group included people who had a positive test in 2020 without another positive test during this artificial two-month window.

The study observed that non-vaccinated group registered a positive test 34.4 percent of the time, compared to 20.3 percent of fully vaccinated individuals. The CDC falsely defined the case group’s second positive test as a “reinfection.” This is the central lie of the study. This data conveniently omitted data on people actually becoming symptomatic or what a common person would call “reinfected.”

To illustrate this point, consider if a Covid-recovered person comes into contact with Sars-Cov-2 in their community. They might test positive on a PCR test. Their body can remember the virus, fight it off, and the person never becomes ill. However, shortly after the exposure, a PCR swab can detect bits of genetic material (even if it’s unviable virus). Therefore, this study could be more of a reflection of people’s likelihood of re-exposure to Sars-Cov-2, not reinfection, as the CDC claimed.

By conflating exposure and reinfection, the CDC misled the public. CDC Director Rochelle Walensky stated, “This study shows you were twice as likely to get infected again if you are unvaccinated. Getting the vaccine is the best way to protect yourself and others around you, especially as the more contagious Delta variant spreads around the country.”

This guidance came when mounting evidence indicated Covid vaccines quickly lose their effectiveness against infection and transmission, which the CDC loathed to admit. Unfortunately, Walensky’s guidance undermined the credibility of the CDC for generations to come.

As a physician, it’s frightening that a public health official made a policy recommendation based on such a flawed study. We should encourage critical thinking and scientific skepticism, but such a blatantly flawed study design should not be tolerated in our leading health institutions.

Not an Isolated Incident for the CDC

This isn’t the only time the CDC has been caught misleading the public. Drawing ire from the medical community, the was an uncontrolled study of students in Arizona that Walensky referred to in discussing the CDC’s mask guidance for schools. This study defined a “covid outbreak” as “two or more” positive lab tests among students or staff. So, if your school had two asymptomatic third graders, you’ve got a “covid outbreak” on your hands. Even worse, the study weighted such an “outbreak” equally to a school with dozens of symptomatic teachers or students. According to the CDC, two equals 50—at least for “covid outbreaks.”

In a Georgia study that actually had a sufficient control arm, the CDC minimized the fact that there was no statistically significant difference between masked and unmasked student groups. They’ve also minimized the importance of diet and exercise during the pandemic. They failed to effectively communicate evidence-based, life-saving outpatient treatment protocols. The list goes on.

Why This Matters So Much

How does minimizing natural immunity cause harm in the real world? There are at least three deadly repercussions.

First, many hospitals following the CDC’s guidance mandated that only vaccinated health-care workers be allowed to work at their facilities. This means naturally immune health-care workers were wrongly excluded from the workforce. Based on a toxic lie fabricated by the CDC, hospitals continue to experience staffing shortages, contributing to the hospitalization overcapacity narrative they’ve used to demonize the unvaccinated.

Second, the same problem arose for nursing homes, where seniors were denied visitation rights from unvaccinated, naturally immune family and friends, even though less protected vaccinated people were allowed in. Lack of care workers also prevents patients from being discharged from hospitals to care facilities.

Third, the natural immunity lie also stripped countless Americans of their health coverage and livelihoods. During the delta wave, for example, a worker at Los Alamos National Laboratories was fired from his job for religiously objecting to vaccination, despite working entirely from home and having recovered from a previous Covid infection. The CDC now admits this worker’s immunity provides protection superior to that of his co-workers who had merely vaccine-induced immunity at that time. He lost his job while the less protected did not. By denying natural immunity’s superiority to vaccine-induced immunity, how many others have been fired and lost health-care access the moment we need our population to be at its healthiest?

Punishing People We Should Have Praised

Naturally immune people should have been identified early in the pandemic as the most protected, ushered into hospitals and nursing homes to serve our vulnerable, and certainly should have been allowed to keep their jobs. By refusing to acknowledge the harms of lockdowns, mask mandates, and vaccination, the CDC has brought everlasting shame to itself. There is clear evidence these types of interventions carry measurable risk. A better approach would have been to honestly discuss the risks and benefits with the public, much like I discuss surgical risks and benefits with my patients. This is the very tenet of informed consent, and better communication always results in a better relationship.

Americans need an unbiased, incorruptible, and credible CDC that provides reliable and scientifically sound public health guidance. These lies have de-legitimized and undermined public confidence in the institution of the CDC itself.

The consequences of lying about Covid-19 will spill into other areas of health care. Millions of Americans have lost trust in our hospitals and institutions and are now resorting to “under the table” health care. In health care, loss of trust equals lack of access. The CDC must return to the basics of evidence-based medicine to overcome its crisis of legitimacy.

Joy Pullmann Op-ed: If Parents Pulled Their Kids from School for Covid Insanity, It Would Already Be Over


COMMENTARY BY: JOY PULLMANN | JANUARY 26, 2022

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/01/26/if-parents-pulled-their-kids-from-school-for-covid-insanity-it-would-already-be-over/

Young man in a mask at high school graduation

For almost as long as Covid-19’s been around, parent anger at local school boards over this or that issue has been a reoccurring major news story. We’ve all seen the viral social media videos and Facebook posts of parents skewering their local elected school boards over critical race theory, unscientific and abusive mask mandates, maddening repeat quarantines of healthy children, and other educational corruption that wrecks children’s ability to learn.

We’ve also seen those viral videos have little effect on what the school board or state board of education subsequently decides. So parents have filed lawsuits and are mounting primary and general election challenges, all of which are great and a healthy part of self-government.

What these strategies don’t do is provide immediate relief to children, whom parents claim are being abused, taught racism, and denied their right to an education. They require children to continue to be abused at least until the next election cycle or until three or five or more years when lawsuits finally reach the highest court that will hear them. That’s a third of a child’s education years.

These strategies also are predicated on the assumption that the people who have created these outrageously irrational and abusive school climates should continue to be trusted to run schools. The entire leadership teams of most schools, school districts, and state education bureaucracies have disqualified themselves from leading any children at all by the kinds of abuses parents charge, but just filing a lawsuit or kicking a few school board members out of office will still leave almost all corrupt educators controlling millions of kids in perpetuity.

If you can’t trust a principal or superintendent to keep teachers from teaching racism and to accurately assess children’s needs and vulnerabilities through Covid even though the data on that is plentiful and clear, how can you trust any other of such persons’ judgment calls?

More than being restrained by a lucky court order merely from putting toddlers in masks, a person whose judgment is so corrupt shouldn’t be making any decisions about children. A person who puts a toddler in a mask, or allows teachers to shame children based on their skin color, cannot be trusted to do just about anything else important and needs to find a new and more productive line of work. Errors this bad are completely disqualifying, and they will not be rectified by merely changing a few surface policies such as the quarantining of healthy kids.

The fact that parents keep their children in schools they charge are teaching racism or delaying crucial development with Covid irrationality gives the schools all they need to keep ignoring the parents. Parents are saying one thing while doing another. They are voting with their feet, and their feet are voting for what they themselves acknowledge is oppression.

So it’s no surprise that school boards, principals, and other entities disregard what the parents say. What the parents say has no, or no immediate, enforcement. And therefore it really isn’t credible. No wonder the school districts don’t take them seriously.

If the parents wanted to be truly effective — as well as truly honest — they would pull their children from schools en masse until problems of such serious magnitude were resolved favorably. Sickouts and mass protests are highly effective forms of warfare on children waged by teachers unions all the time. But parents so far haven’t responded in kind.

Why is that? Why are parents all bark and no bite with their school complaints? Possibly they don’t know how to be effective. And possibly, many aren’t willing to make the big sacrifices required to enforce their beliefs. They can see that something very serious is wrong, but they aren’t willing or able to fix it. They’re still waiting on others to fix things for them.

They, and their children, will wait a very long time for that. They will certainly wait long past Covidtide. And that’s why public schools are as bad as they are — the people who are supposed to hold them accountable refuse to do exactly that even while claiming to.

In the end, schools and parents are basically fighting over something underneath all these disputes that almost nobody mentions: money. Schools get public education money, not parents. It gives them the power to abuse children while parents complain yet keep putting that mask on their kindergartener every single day, even after he throws up in it at school or it prevents him from being able to read or speak properly.

School boards don’t care about complaints. They care about money. As long as they have it, and parents don’t take it, schools will continue to do whatever they want to children. And American children will continue to be unhappy, uneducated, and unprepared for life while everyone pretends it’s someone else’s fault.

It’s clear that American parents have a codependent relationship with the schools they claim to despise. They are in fact enabling the very abuse they complain about. So while it is entirely legitimate to go yell at school boards and vote bad people out of office, it’s also time for parents to engage in some critical thinking about their own choices that enable this situation. As long as public schools continue to get money no matter what they do, this situation will continue, no matter how many uncomfortable meetings and lawsuits parents instigate.

If state legislatures do not yank money from America’s abusive public school systems, parents must yank their kids. Trust, me, it will work. It might already be happening.


Joy Pullmann is executive editor of The Federalist, a happy wife, and the mother of six children. Her bestselling ebook is “Classic Books for Young Children.” Sign up here to get early access to her next book, “How To Control The Internet So It Doesn’t Control You.” Mrs. Pullmann identifies as native American and gender natural. She is also the author of “The Education Invasion: How Common Core Fights Parents for Control of American Kids,” from Encounter Books. In 2013-14 she won a Robert Novak journalism fellowship for in-depth reporting on Common Core national education mandates. Joy is a grateful graduate of the Hillsdale College honors and journalism programs.

Health ‘Experts’ Finally Admit Masks Control People, Not Viruses


Reported BY: KYLEE ZEMPEL | JANUARY 05, 2022

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/01/05/health-experts-finally-admit-masks-control-people-not-viruses/

masks worn by Joe Biden (speaking) and Anthony Fauci

We’ve been censored. Hollered at by Karens in the grocery store and sometimes even outdoors. We’ve been lectured, demonized, scoffed at, and called murderers and rubes — all for the sin of ignoring mask security theater and daring to show the lower half of our faces in public. That’s why it’s just remarkable to hear the experts now admit that the same face coverings required in so many establishments and localities are not stopping any virus from spreading.

CNN medical analyst Leana Wen, who was previously president of abortion giant Planned Parenthood, said so on the network — and not only in reference to the current variant, as if new data has suddenly justified a change in guidance. She explicitly said cloth masks haven’t been effective since the dawn of the Wuhan virus.

“Cloth masks are not appropriate for this pandemic. It’s not appropriate for omicron, it was not appropriate for delta, alpha, or any of the previous variants either, because we’re dealing with something that’s airborne,” Wen said.

“Don’t wear a cloth mask,” she said in another segment, going so far as to call them little more than “facial decorations.”

It isn’t just one floating head on CNN. In a letter to Capitol Hill staffers, the attending physician reportedly announced the end of blue surgical masks, cloth masks, and gaiters, ordering that “the more protective KN95 or N95 masks” must now be worn.

“…[S]urgical masks are NO LONGER ENOUGH for an airborne virus that’s transmitting as fast or faster than any virus known to mankind,” tweeted a paranoid professor from the University of Colorado at Boulder. The Washington Post jumped in too.

And here’s the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention spilling the beans that a surgical mask “is not considered respiratory protection.”

WebMD piled on also, urging Americans to discard the kind of cloth face masks worn by busybody fellow shoppers while they lecture the unmasked to cover their faces. Those aren’t good enough and never have been.

This is now the wisdom imparted by the experts, that the sweaty, flimsy, itchy muzzles that have been forced on schoolchildren, healthy athletes, socially distant employees, grocery-shopping moms, and even their toddlers are “not appropriate.” They’re nothing more than “facial decorations” against a virus that’s in the air and can’t be contained.

It’s almost like conservatives have been reading the available scientific studies and saying this since the beginning, like herehereherehereherehere, and here. Maybe sweat-soaked cloth masks in the gym actually aren’t great for your health, many on the right suggested. My 3-year-old’s mask that she can’t stop touching probably isn’t keeping her healthier, others thought. Yet the response from the left to this pushback was routine scorn and censorship.

Amazon banned a book by former New York Times reporter Alex Berenson that discussed the scientific evidence that mask mandates are ineffective. Big Tech weaponized fake fact-checks to choke out The Federalist’s science-backed reporting on masks. Former White House COVID Task Force advisor Dr. Scott Atlas was banned from publishing references to scientific mask studies, as CNN’s Jake Tapper and Dr. Sanjay Gupta cheered Twitter on. Google-owned YouTube infamously nuked a June interview of Atlas.

Yet now, the left’s “experts” are going on network television to announce that we must stop wearing the cloth and surgical masks that have become synonymous with COVID morality, and they’re announcing that actually we’ve known these masks have been “inappropriate” all along.

Americans are just supposed to take this. In response to the gaslighting, they’re just supposed to obediently discard the cloth masks they’ve been berated and coerced into wearing and instead go buy some stronger mask to protect God-knows-who from this wave of a virus that manifests as the common cold for even the vast majority of the yet-unvaccinated.

While in many sane areas of the country, masks have long been an afterthought, that’s not the reality for other Americans. Mask mandates still prevail in too many places, with the entire state of Oregon tossing around the idea of a “permanent” mask mandate.

Other authoritarian pockets such as Madison, Wisconsin, just never let their temporary mandates expire. Of course, these mandates don’t require any particular kind of face covering. So as Wen said, the masks are nothing more than “facial decorations,” meaning the mandates are nothing more than political theater.

The gaslighting is enough to drive anyone absolutely mad, but with the experts’ admission that most of our masks aren’t cutting it, they’ve also admitted something far more consequential. These masks and the mandates that accompany them have never been about controlling a virus. They’ve always been about controlling people.


Kylee Zempel is an assistant editor at The Federalist. She previously worked as the copy editor for the Washington Examiner magazine and as an editor and producer at National Geographic. She holds a B.S. in Communication Arts/Speech and an A.S. in Criminal Justice and writes on topics including feminism and gender issues, religious liberty, and criminal justice. Follow her on Twitter @kyleezempel.

Daniel Horowitz Op-ed: The country that ‘succeeded’ against COVID with masks has the highest case rate in the world


Commentary by DANIEL HOROWITZ | December 07, 2021

Read more at https://www.conservativereview.com/horowitz-the-country-that-succeeded-against-covid-with-masks-has-the-highest-case-rate-in-the-world-theblaze-2655944084.html/

Those who believe in the freedom of bodily autonomy are celebrating a slew of recent court rulings enjoining the Biden administration’s injection mandate. However, no GOP state attorney general has bothered to fight the equally immoral, illogical, and inhumane mask mandates that are still in place. Despite nearly two years of evidence that strict mask-wearing has zero effectiveness in stopping the spread, the mandates on 2-year-olds on planes and in many schools still continue. Slovakia is a perfect case study of the mask mendacity.

On May 13, 2020, the Atlantic published an article lauding Slovakia for, at the time, having the lowest per-capita COVID death rate in Europe. The article’s prediction should now be the laughingstock of the world:

When this pandemic ends, and when the reckoning over how the world responded invariably begins, Slovakia will likely be among those highlighted as a success story, whereas the United States—which was supposed to be the country best prepared for such a crisis—will be remembered as among those that suffered the worst. How Slovakia was able to flatten its curve comes down to more than just quick decision making and the widespread adoption of face masks. Perhaps the greatest lesson to be learned from Slovakia is of the value of leading from the front.

Slovakia was so worried about masks that the country even got Taiwan to donate hundreds of thousands of these useless cloths as part of a bilateral trade agreement.

Well, that was before Slovakia’s first winter wave. One can excuse people for mistaking low spread at the time for mask efficacy rather than the fact that the country just didn’t get its turn yet. But for countries to continue this inhumane mandate despite what we now know demonstrates that masks are not a means to public health but an end in themselves of tyranny.

At over 2,000 new cases per million per day, according to Our World in Data, Slovakia now has more cases per capita than any country in the world. To put this in perspective, that is almost three times the level of the winter peak in the U.S., a country that has not exactly performed well in the pandemic!

It’s true that some individual states closer to the size of Slovakia have had more severe waves. However, even the worst counties in the upper Midwest are tracking about 1,200 new cases per million per day.

And here is the epidemiological curve presented by the inimitable Ian Miller, juxtaposed to policy solutions:

It’s not just Slovakia. Wherever you turn in Europe, both masks and vaccine mandates have failed miserably, and the spread is now worse than ever. Belgium is now six weeks into the new mask mandate, and it has more cases than ever before, even though the Belgians already suffered one of the deadliest waves in all of Europe. Oh, and 87.4% of adults are vaccinated.

To begin with, the CDC, as late as May 2020, was citing the 10 randomized controlled trials that showed “no significant reduction in influenza transmission with the use of face masks.” The Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine at Oxford also summarized six international studies that “showed that masks alone have no significant effect in interrupting the spread of ILI or influenza in the general population, nor in healthcare workers.”

The only randomized controlled trial studying mask efficacy against COVID published last year was the now famous Danish study that failed to show any meaningful reduction in spread from mask-wearing. Then, several months ago, the media trumpeted a large study done in Bangladesh that seemed to show efficacy. Well, now that the authors have released the actual data, we see that indeed no such claim can be made from the study. It turns out that out of over 340,000 individuals over a span of eight weeks, there were only 20 fewer cases of COVID detected in the mask group over the control group – 1,106 symptomatic individuals confirmed seropositive in the control group and 1,086 such individuals in the treatment group.

Even these results are hard to interpret because of numerous confounding factors. University of California Berkeley professor Ben Recht critiqued the study as follows:

This study was not blinded, as it’s impossible to blind a study on masks. The intervention was highly complex and included a mask promotion campaign and education about other mitigation measures including social distancing. Moreover, individuals were only added to the study if they consented to allow the researchers to visit and survey their households. There was a large differential between the control and treatment groups here, with 95% consenting in the treatment group but only 92% consenting in control. This differential alone could wash away the difference in observed cases. Finally, symptomatic seropositivity is a crude measure of covid as the individuals could have been infected before the trial began.

Given the numerous caveats and confounders, the study still only found a tiny effect size. My takeaway is that a complex intervention including an educational program, free masks, encouraged mask wearing, and surveillance in a poor country with low population immunity and no vaccination showed at best modest reduction in infection.

In other words, you can now add this to a list of 400 studies compiled by the Brownstone Institute that fail to find any correlation between public policy interventions and better pandemic outcomes.

It’s not OK for Republican-controlled states to continue to ignore the facts that masks are inhumane and they simply don’t work. Consider the fact that Head Start has now mandated masks on 2-year-olds, many of whom have special needs. Oregon has moved to make its mask mandate permanent. Why are no red state governments at least suing against the federal mandates, and why are so few red states even banning mask mandates within the states?

The courts are all political. They only responded to the lawsuits against the vaccine mandate when they saw robust political opposition within the political branches of the red states. They see no such opposition regarding the mask mandates. Thus, absent a unified effort from state attorneys general, they are unlikely to respond to a handful of individual lawsuits. The same legal rationale denying the feds the power to force vaccines also denies them the power to cover our breathing holes. But the courts only respond to political momentum.If nearly two years of masking failing to work anywhere is still not enough to end the most invasive human mandate of all time, then we truly are no longer a free people.

UPDATE: Only the Servants Wear Masks at Pelosi’s Chi-chi Napa Brunch (VIDEO)


Reported By Jim Hoft | Published August 22, 2021

Read more at https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2021/08/update-servants-wear-masks-pelosis-chi-chi-napa-brunch-video/

As Cristina Laila reported earlier — Pelosi chichi held a high dollar fundraiser brunch in Napa Valley this weekend as tens of thousands of Americans were trapped behind enemy lines in Afghanistan. The cost of a ticket to attend the event starts at $100 and go through $29,000 to chair.

Nearly all attendees were white and unmasked.

The only ‘diversity’ was among the wait staff. Only the servants were in masks.

Masks are for the little people.

Jim Hoft

Jim Hoft is the founder and editor of The Gateway Pundit, one of the top conservative news outlets in America. Jim was awarded the Reed Irvine Accuracy in Media Award in 2013 and is the proud recipient of the Breitbart Award for Excellence in Online Journalism from the Americans for Prosperity Foundation in May 2016.

Daniel Horowitz Op-ed: A group of Florida parents cultured their children’s masks and found dangerous bacteria


Commentary by DANIEL HOROWITZ | June 16, 2021

Read more at https://www.theblaze.com/op-ed/horowitz-a-group-of-florida-parents-cultured-their-childrens-masks-and-found-dangerous-bacteria/

The idea of children, including preschoolers, walking around with bacteria traps on their breathing orifices all day so shocked the conscience that last summer, a bunch of internet parodies were produced illustrating such absurdity. Then, within weeks, most local governments mandated this cruel form of child abuse for an entire year without any study of the side effects. Now a group of parents from the Gainesville, Florida, area have shown that such masks are traps for harmful bacteria that potentially make children much sicker than from COVID — the virus for which the masks were required, but failed to mitigate.

In a press release obtained by TheBlaze and posted at RationalGround.com, six Alachua County, Florida, parents reported the findings of the lab cultures of their children’s masks worn in school. The parents sent the six masks to the University of Florida’s Mass Spectrometry Research and Education Center after they were worn for five to eight hours, most during in-person schooling by children ages 6 through 11. Although many students across the country likely wore dirty masks indefinitely for numerous days, the face masks studied in this analysis were new or freshly laundered before wearing. One of the masks submitted was from an adult who wore it at work as a cosmetologist.

The resulting report found that five masks were contaminated with bacteria, parasites, and fungi, including three with dangerous pathogenic and pneumonia-causing bacteria.

The lab used a method called proteomics to extract proteins from the masks and sequence them. The analysis detected the following 11 alarmingly dangerous pathogens on the masks:

  • Streptococcus pneumoniae (pneumonia)
  • Mycobacterium tuberculosis (tuberculosis)
  • Neisseria meningitidis (meningitis, sepsis)
  • Acanthamoeba polyphaga (keratitis and granulomatous amebic encephalitis)
  • Acinetobacter baumanni (pneumonia, bloodstream infections, meningitis, UTIs — resistant to antibiotics)
  • Escherichia coli (food poisoning)
  • Borrelia burgdorferi (causes Lyme disease)
  • Corynebacterium diphtheriae (diphtheria)
  • Legionella pneumophila (Legionnaires’ disease)
  • Staphylococcus pyogenes serotype M3 (severe infections — high morbidity rates)
  • Staphylococcus aureus (meningitis, sepsis)

“Half of the masks were contaminated with one or more strains of pneumonia-causing bacteria,” according to the release. “One-third were contaminated with one or more strains of meningitis-causing bacteria. One-third were contaminated with dangerous, antibiotic-resistant bacterial pathogens. In addition, less dangerous pathogens were identified, including pathogens that can cause fever, ulcers, acne, yeast infections, strep throat, periodontal disease, Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, and more.”

For a control, the parents submitted a T-shirt worn by one of the children at school and unworn masks. No pathogens were found on the controls.

Obviously, the naysayers will immediately jump on this and criticize it as being a rudimentary study and small sample size. But that is the entire point. Of course, this issue needs further study. But why has this not been done over the course of the entire year by our government or any well-funded institution? How can we mandate such draconian policies without studying the side effects, including the spread of pathogens? Why is this left to helpless parents trying to raise awareness of these concerns?

It’s not like these concerns are novel. On March 8, 2020, Dr. Fauci told “60 Minutes” that masks can only block large droplets, they give a false sense of security, and they cause people to get more germs on their hands by fiddling with them. Several weeks later, Surgeon General Jerome Adams punctuated this point about the counterproductivity of wearing masks in public. Appearing on “Fox & Friends” on March 31, Adams said that based on a study that shows medical students who wear masks touch their faces 23 times more often, one has to assume that “wearing a mask improperly can actually increase your risk of getting disease.”

A 2014 study of hospital workers wearing surgical masks in a Bangkok hospital found their masks to be saturated with Staphylococcus aureus (found on some of the masks in the Alachua study) and the fungus Aspergillus. Another study of hospital workers in China from 2019 observed that after more than six hours of use, masks worn by medical personnel also contained viruses, including adenovirus, bocavirus, respiratory syncytial virus, and influenza viruses. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to hypothesize that a warm and humid microclimate cultivated by a mask is going to serve as an incubator for all sorts of pathogens. Not surprisingly, studies have shown that pathogen density on masks grows exponentially after two hours of use.

To this day, Fauci and CDC researchers have never answered how those concerns were no longer valid after their political U-turn on masks, given the terrible conditions with which we’ve witnessed the entire country wearing and reusing masks. The same reason why Fauci said last summer they never planned to embark on a randomized controlled trial of the efficacy of masks is likely why they never studied the side effects of masks either. They didn’t want to discover the truth that they themselves originally understood.

These findings are important for two reasons. First, there is a need to ensure that mask mandates are never implemented again. The Boston Globe is already advocating their use for the flu season. Second, as much as the mask mandate has ended for most consumers, workers in many professions are still required to wear them for hours on end without regard for the hazards they pose. A Florida appeals court has already ruled that the mask mandate in Alachua County is presumptively unconstitutional because it violates bodily autonomy. The risk of masks cultivating and spreading other pathogens is just another reason why something this personal to the body must remain a personal choice.

Face masks are polluting the world’s beaches and oceans, pose potential health risks to humans: ‘Really concerning’


Reported by PAUL SACCA | April 09, 2021

Read more at https://www.theblaze.com/news/face-masks-pollution-beaches-ocean-health-risks/

This month marks the anniversary of San Francisco implementing the first face mask mandate in the United States. Since then, nearly all states have implemented mask mandates during the COVID-19 pandemic. By October, 93% of Americans said they sometimes, often, or always wear a mask or face covering when they leave their home and are unable to socially distance.

“Humanity is going through 129 billion face masks a month, which works out to three million a minute,” according to Big Think.

With large populations of the world using masks regularly as a health precaution against coronavirus, it has had an unintended consequence – pollution. The Ocean Conservancy released new data detailing how personal protective equipment has polluted beaches and oceans all over the planet. Volunteers who were cleaning beaches all over the world tracked the number of PPE they found on the shore. From late July until December 2020, volunteers collected 107,219 items of personal protective equipment from beaches and waterways worldwide.

The Ocean Conservancy notes that the number is “likely a vast undercount of what was and remains out there” because many volunteers recorded discarded PPE as “Personal Hygiene” or “Other Trash.”

“The amount of personal hygiene litter recorded in the app between January and July 2020 was three times higher than what was recorded in that same time period for each of the previous three years despite significantly lower participation levels due to the pandemic lockdowns.”

The report found that 94% of the volunteers encountered PPE pollution during their cleanup efforts, and over 80% of respondents identified face masks as the most common waste PPE. There were 37% of cleanup participants who reported PPE in waterways.

“This is the first time we have some very hard evidence to shed a spotlight on the magnitude of the PPE component of the plastic pollution issue, and really underscores how this is a new additive component to our existing global crisis,” Nick Mallos, senior director for the group’s Trash Free Seas program, told KING-TV.

“This was not a typical type of litter that we saw more than a year ago,” said Amber Smith, litter prevention coordinator for the Washington Department of Ecology. “This is a brand-new thing related to COVID, and it’s really concerning.”

Volunteers with New Jersey’s Clean Ocean Action environmental group removed 1,113 masks and other pieces of coronavirus-related protective gear from New Jersey beaches last fall.

A report from OceansAsia from last year estimated nearly 1.6 billion face masks flooded the oceans in 2020. The group suspects that discarded face masks would result in an additional 4,680 to 6,240 metric tons of marine plastic pollution. The Hong Kong-based marine conservation organization claims that the face masks would take as long as 450 years to break down.

“Most of these face mask wastes contains either polypropylene and/or polyethylene, polyurethane, polystyrene, polycarbonate, polyacrylonitrile, which add plastic or microplastic pollution to the environment,” ScienceDirect reports.

Single-use face masks are believed to be a source of microplastic pollution, which could pose health risks to humans.

“A newer and bigger concern is that the masks are directly made from microsized plastic fibers (thickness of ~1 to 10 micrometers),” according to a study by doctors Elvis Genbo Xu of the University of Southern Denmark and Zhiyong Jason Ren of Princeton. “When breaking down in the environment, the mask may release more micro-sized plastics, easier and faster than bulk plastics like plastic bags. Such impacts can be worsened by a new-generation mask, nanomasks, which directly use nano-sized plastic fibers (with a diameter smaller than 1 micrometer) and add a new source of nanoplastic pollution.”

“Single-use polymeric materials have been identified as a significant source of plastics and plastic particle pollution in the environment,” another study claimed. “Disposable face masks (single use) that get to the environment (disposal in landfill, dumpsites, freshwater, oceans or littering at public spaces) could be emerging new source of microplastic fibers, as they can degrade/fragment or break down into smaller size/pieces of particles under 5 mm known as microplastics under environmental conditions.”

“Obviously, PPE is critical right now, but we know that with increased amounts of plastic and a lot of this stuff getting out into the ocean, it can be a really big threat to marine mammals and all marine life,” said Adam Ratner, an educator at the Marine Mammal Center, a conservation group that rescues and rehabilitates mammals.

It is noted that face masks are easily ingested by higher organisms, such as fishes, and microorganisms in the aquatic life which will affect the food chain and finally chronic health problems to humans,” one study noted.

“Researchers believe masks could compound that issue, as the spun plastic fibers break down into smaller and smaller particles that evade filters,” KING-TV reported. “Small fibers and particles are widely found in drinking water, and such contamination can bio-accumulate in marine life, causing problems for the creatures themselves, and those higher up the food chain that consume them.”

2019 report by Australia’s University of Newcastle found that the largest source of plastic ingestion by humans were drinking water and eating shellfish.

“Plastic pollution is so widespread in the environment that you may be ingesting five grams a week, the equivalent of eating a credit card,” Reuters reported.

“Because research into microplastics is so new, there’s not yet enough data to say exactly how they’re affecting human health, says Jodi Flaws, a professor of comparative biosciences and associate director of the Interdisciplinary Environmental Toxicology Program at the University of Illinois,” according to a 2019 report from the Washington Post. “Flaws says microplastic particles can also accumulate polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), other chemicals that are linked to harmful health effects, including various cancers, a weakened immune system, reproductive problems and more.”

The article warns that microplastics can disrupt hormones and reduce fertility. Another issue is that disposable masks can’t be recycled with typical recyclables, which makes disposing of PPE even more challenging.

“Used correctly PPE saves lives; disposed of incorrectly it kills marine life,” said Cindy Zipf, the executive director of New Jersey’s Clean Ocean Action. “PPE litter is a gross result of the pandemic, and 100% avoidable. Use PPE properly, then dispose of it properly in a trash can. It’s not hard and it’s the least we can do for this marvel of a planet we all live on, not to mention ourselves.”

Horowitz: Comprehensive analysis of 50 states shows greater spread with mask mandates


For months, we’ve been lectured to by the political elites that cases of coronavirus are spreading too quickly and that we must wear masks to stop the spread. The obvious fault with their act of desperation is that they can no longer mask the fact that most parts of the country have already been fully masked for months — long before the ubiquitous spread this fall.

Researchers at RationalGround.com, a clearinghouse of COVID-19 data trends run by a grassroots group of data analysts, computer scientists, and actuaries, did an analysis of all 50 states divided by those that had mask mandates and those that did not. Justin Hart, co-founder of the website, posted the results in a Twitter thread and shared with me the data analysis:

They studied the number of cases over a 229-day period from May 1 through Dec. 15 and divided the results of the two study groups by days with mask mandates and days without mask mandates. The non-mandate data group includes both states that never had a mandate and those that did at some point, but data set included only the days they did not have a mask mandate.

The results: When comparing states with mandates vs. those without, or periods of times within a state with a mandate vs. without, there is absolutely no evidence the mask mandate worked to slow the spread one iota. In total, in the states that had a mandate in effect, there were 9,605,256 confirmed COVID cases over 5,907 total days, an average of 27 cases per 100,000 per day. When states did not have a statewide order (which includes the states that never had them and the period of time masking states did not have the mandate in place) there were 5,781,716 cases over 5,772 total days, averaging 17 cases per 100,000 people per day.

The reverse correlation between periods of masking and non-masking is remarkable.

The 15 states that did not have a statewide mask mandate for the duration of this analysis were Alaska, Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Iowa, Missouri, North Dakota, Nebraska, New Hampshire, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, and Wyoming.

Importantly, for purposes of this study, the analysts gave the mask mandate states a 14-day grace period from the time of implementation in order to begin counting cases against mask efficacy. This gives time for the existing spread from the original policy to become obsolete, in order to more accurately assess the efficacy of the mandate. Proponents of the mask mandate might suggest that mask mandates were often imposed once cases already spread quickly, so there is a negative bias of increased cases in those areas (or times) that had mandates in place. However, there was no evidence of any reduction in cases or even better outcomes many weeks later. In fact, Ian Miller, one of the researchers at RationalGround.com, found that three counties in Florida (Manatee, Martin, and Nassau) that allowed the mandate to expire after having implemented it had fewer cases per capita than those counties that kept the mandate.

Nor has the mandate worked in states where it was implemented long before the surge in cases began.

California is the ultimate example of a state that had a mask mandate in place forever — long before its turn for spread hit in earnest.

The simple reality is that there is no legitimate data showing the mandates worked.

My first question when reading this analysis was that perhaps there is a bias in case counts against those areas with mask mandates because, by definition, most areas without them are more conservative and tend to have lower population density. After all, dense areas seem to be associated with more spread, and therefore, those areas must be judged by a different standard.

First, it’s important to recognize that over the past few months, as the virus has spread rapidly to the low-population states and counties, the gap between the urban and rural areas has really closed as the virus appears to be giving everyone equal treatment. Also, included in the top-line number of 17 cases per 100,000 in the non-mask states are also the larger states that did eventually adopt a mandate, but had prior days without the mandate in which the cases were counted among the non-mandate data set. Thus, the study is more apples-to-apples than simply taking places that never had a mandate vs. those that always did over the entire study period.

More fundamentally, this study analyzed Florida by county data and shows no correlation between mask mandates and fewer cases, even adjusting for population density. Gov. Ron DeSantis has notoriously declined to issue a statewide mandate in the Sunshine State; however, of the 67 total counties in Florida, 22 have implemented an executive mask order at some point during the study period. Two of them (Miami-Dade and Osceola) were in effect for the entire period, while the other 20 began in the spring, summer, or fall.

What are the results?

When counties did have a mandate in effect, there were 667,239 cases over 3,137 days with an average of 23 cases per 100,000 per day. When counties did not have a countywide order, there were 438,687 cases over 12,139 days with an average of 22 cases per 100,000 per day.

Did population density play a role?

When you isolate only the top 12 most populous counties in the state (>500,000), eight of them had effective mask orders implemented at some point during the study period, and four never had a countywide order (Brevard, Lee, Polk, and Volusia). When the eight did have an order in effect, there were 24 cases per 100,000 a day. On the other hand, during the days when mandates were not in place (which is never in four counties, and some weeks in seven of the other eight except for Miami-Dade), there were 17 cases per 100,000 per day.

We can turn the numbers upside down and inside out, but no matter how we examine them, there is no evidence of masks correlating with reduced spread. If anything, the opposite is true. And it sure as heck is not because of a lack of compliance.

It’s self-evident that the virus does what it does naturally and follows a very mechanical pattern regardless of state policies.

The burden is on those who want to violate the Constitution with such a draconian mandate for the rest of our lives to present affirmative evidence that their religious symbol works. The phony “fact checkers” will always find ways to show that we can’t prove beyond a shadow of doubt that masks will never work. But while they force us to prove 100% that they don’t work, mandates don’t have to prove any efficacy at all, even as 2-year-olds are forced to have their faces covered on planes.

We used to all scoff at the Islamic fundamentalist for believing that if they just waged jihad a little harder, they’d earn their 72 virgins. Well, those people can learn a thing or two about faith from the mask fundamentalists who believe it’s never too late for masks to magically stop a virus after months of failure.

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