It has become evident that California Governor Gavin Newsom never had an actual exit strategy for his statewide Coronavirus response.
All of California’s schools are still closed due to Gov. Gavin Newsom’s COVID-19 lockdown order – all K-12 schools, community colleges and universities.
All event venues are also closed down.
Professional sports are either still closed down, or are playing a limited schedule with no live audiences present.
Most government offices are closed.
Bars are closed.
Many restaurants are closed.
Most retail is closed.
Most indoor malls are closed.
All museums, theaters, theme parks, are closed.
Campgrounds are closed.
Summer pools are closed, and recreations programs cancelled.
“Lockdowns ended American life as we knew it just five months ago, for a virus that 99.4-6% of those who contract it shake off, for which the median age of death is 78-80 with comorbidities, for which there is not a single verified case of reinfection on the planet, for which international successes in managing this relied on herd immunity and openness,” Jeffrey Tucker wrote at American Institute for Economic Research.
Gov. Gavin Newsom does a daily video press conference talking about more COVID “cases” and “infections,” and discusses his list of counties still locked down, but what are the rules?
Newsom months ago told Californians there would be four phases to re-opening the state. In April, Gov. Newsom outlined a 4-stage plan to bring California “back to normal.” While he confirmed the state was on Stage 1 at the time, it was about staying at home, flattening the coronavirus curve, building healthcare capacity, and preparing businesses and schools for reopening through new guidelines.
Newsom said stage 2 would come online within a few weeks, allowing retail, manufacturing, offices, child care, possible limited school re-openings, and public spaces being opened to varying degrees.
However, Californians were also warned in April the lockdown “could last until June.”
It is now mid-August – the 9th month into this “pandemic.”
In June, Gov. Newsom and California Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly told Californians that phase 3 would begin, but counties would only be allowed to move up to the advanced Phase 3 if coronavirus cases remain low, adequate testing was done, and that counties could show that were are prepared for a greater number of re-openings, as well as being prepared for upticks in the number of cases in case of another outbreak. The Globe reported that most of California’s counties had met those standards and could have reopened on June 12th.
But that didn’t happen either. Even back in June, the Globe posited: “It is apparent to anyone paying attention that Gov. Newsom is trying to keep the state under his thumb in lockdown mode as long as possible – Tuesday, November 3, 2020, comes to mind.”
Counties frustrated with waiting for Newsom’s latest rule change, opened up without his permission. And then the businesses in those counties paid for it by having their licenses threatened by totalitarian local and state officials, and bars and restaurants risked losing liquor licenses courtesy of aggressive Alcoholic Beverage Control officials who paid them untimely visits.
Shortly thereafter, riots appeared to be coordinated in cities throughout the state, forcing businesses, restaurants, bars, boutiques, professionals offices and even government, to clean up the mess and destruction, board up windows and close down. Far too many of those businesses are still closed.
Gov. Newsom shut the state down again with his July 13th order.
“It has become evident there is no actual structure to the phased re-opening of California counties or businesses,” Tucker wrote at AIER.
“In 2006, the great epidemiologist Donald Henderson warned that if government pursued coercive measures to control a virus, the result would be a “loss of confidence in government to manage the crisis.” The reason is that the measures do not work. Further, the attempt to make them work turns a manageable crisis into a catastrophe.”
“So much so, in fact, that this might account for why “14 Days to Flatten the Curve” has stretched to five months in which the Bill of Rights has been a dead letter, many are still locked out of their gyms, we can’t go to the movies, and we are forced to dance around each other in public spaces as if every person might be carrying a deadly pathogen.”
Monday’s California Department of Public Health (CDPH) update only added to the mass confusion. Note the red bold section:
County Data Monitoring Update
CDPH has updated the county data monitoring list now that the recent backlog of data has been cleared. As a result, CDPH has retroactively updated the list for each day over the entire period impacted (July 25 – August 16).
Counties that have now been added to the list include Amador, Calaveras, Inyo, Mendocino, and Sierra. Santa Cruz County has been removed from the list.
If a county should have moved off the list while the list was frozen, that date is being calculated retroactively. The calculation will use the first date after three consecutive days of being under the threshold for the county data monitoring metrics.
If a county moved onto the list during the period the list was frozen (August 1-16), to implement sector closures in compliance with the July 13 order, new closures must be effective by 11:59 pm on August 19.
Counties on the County Monitoring List for three or more consecutive days – currently 42 counties accounting for the majority of the state’s population – must have closed indoor operations for additional activities. The July 13 order specifies that these indoor operations shall remain closed, even when a county is removed from the county monitoring list, until the state health officer modifies the order and authorizes re-opening. The state is actively reassessing the July 13 order in light of evolving scientific evidence regarding disease transmission and the risk of transmission in different settings and will provide updates in the coming week.
Also from the CDPH:
During Tuesday’s daily video press conference this week, Dr. Ghaly said they (CDPH) are working through potential modifications to the order that would allow additional outdoor activities and/or resumption of certain indoor activities.
“Thank you state doctor for considering which outdoor activities we will be allowed to participate in again,” a friend retorted.
The governor, Dr. Ghaly and the CDPH are trying to once again to rewrite the rules – moving the goalposts out, or erasing the lines altogether. This is going to upset many of the state’s county supervisors and Mayors, as well as the state’s citizens who are still unemployed or dealing with a closed business, all searching for some sense of certainty on which they can plan.
Dr. Ghaly spent most of Tuesday’s press conference discussing COVID-19 in children, and how the seasonal flu will be upon us soon, while we are still dealing with COVID. His recommendation is to get early flu vaccinations, and then get a COVID vaccination when it becomes available. Mostly, his language made it clear that Californians are being set up for continuing lockdowns with COVID and the upcoming seasonal flu, which has never shut the state down.
“We are besotted with these public health authorities and government officials who made a terrible, life-wrecking error,” AEIR’s Tucker wrote. “They can’t admit it because the devastation has been so complete.”
On Monday, Gov. Newsom announced that Santa Cruz County and San Diego County would be leaving the state COVID-19 watchlist due to fewer positive cases, while four new rural counties were added to the list. Almost immediately, tyrannical Santa Cruz County Health Officer Dr. Gail Newel announced, “What it doesn’t mean right now is the opening of anything at all.”
Why have a list at all if counties come off of it, and more counties go on, while county public health officials are allowed to determine what businesses can re-open or remain closed?
Why does it appear that Gov. Newsom is shooting from the hip every day?
Tuesday, Gov. Newsom declared another state of emergency, this one due to high temperatures and over two dozen separate wildfires currently burning across the state. Another state of emergency… he hasn’t removed the COVID state of emergency, which gives him unchecked emergency powers.
The state appears to be in full meltdown with the COVID lockdown, statewide power shortages, rolling blackouts even though we pay 50% more for our electricity than the rest of the country, 4-6 weeks to file unemployment claims, 8 million Californians on unemployment (the state of New Jersey has 8 million residents), High Speed Rail is spending billions on a remote route that will never be used, and hundreds of thousands of homeless drug-addicted vagrants and felons living on the streets, but by golly, we are the nation’s greenest state (with no power in many locations).
Who is in charge?
“Still the politicians who had become dictators couldn’t admit such astonishing failure so they kept the restrictions in place as a way of covering up what they had done,” Tucker said.
“If the lockdowns really had lasted 14 days only, it would have gone down in American history as a legendary disaster,” Tucker said. “But five full months of this nonsense? What does that mean for the future? The blowback will be the dominant issue in American life for many years to come.”
The blowback will be as legendary as the disaster.
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