The National  Memo Logo

Smart. Sharp. Funny. Fearless.

Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}

Photo by Trinity Care Foundation licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Reprinted with permission from MediaMatters.

Federal data on excess U.S. deaths since the early weeks of the coronavirus pandemic shows a sharper rise in deaths than confirmed COVID-19 fatalities alone account for, according to a Yale University analysis conducted for The Washington Post. Though the excess deaths -- "the number beyond what would normally be expected for that time of year" -- are "not necessarily attributable directly to covid-19," the Yale analysis suggests "the death toll from the pandemic is significantly higher than has been reported."


The data deeply undermines the right-wing media claim that coronavirus fatalities are being over-counted. Presidential Medal of Freedom honoree and conspiracy theorist Rush Limbaugh said that "governments are eager, almost, to chalk up as many deaths to coronavirus as they can because then it furthers the policies they have put in place." Fox's Brit Hume notably argued on Twitter and on-air that fatalities in New York were over-counted because the figures don't "distinguish between those who die with the disease and those who die from it." Fox contributor and Laura Ingraham sidekick Raymond Arroyo even suggested that hospitals have a financial incentive to inflate COVID-19 fatalities, which was also echoed by One America News Network host Graham Ledger.

A widespread conspiracy theory of "empty hospitals" also made rounds on social media and on Fox, its proponents alleging that photos and videos of hospital parking lots and waiting rooms proved that the pandemic was not as bad as the media reported. Among many others, the theory was promoted by Fox News host Steve Hilton, Fox contributor Sara Carter, and former Fox contributor Todd Starnes.

The Fox prime-time lineup was eager to declare "Mission Accomplished" in early April, because reported deaths did not match the severity of earlier projections, ignoring all of the work and sacrifice that went into pushing the curve downward.

It is little wonder that after weeks of reckless coverage from Fox and other right-wing media, Fox News viewers have come to falsely believe that the number of COVID-19 fatalities has been inflated.

Advertising

Start your day with National Memo Newsletter

Know first.

The opinions that matter. Delivered to your inbox every morning

By Pavel Polityuk

KYIV (Reuters) -Ukraine on Wednesday accused Russia of exploiting its capture of a nuclear power plant to fire rockets from the site at a nearby town in an attack that killed at least 13 people and wounded many others.

Keep reading... Show less

Former President Donald Trump

Youtube Screenshot

'Tonight the FBI officially became the enemy of the people!!!' Rep. Ronny Jackson of Texas tweeted.

House and Senate Republicans are irate over the raid by FBI agents on Monday at former President Donald Trump's Florida estate and have vowed to defund the agency and seek retribution against it should the GOP regain control of Congress in November.

The promise to take funding from the Federal Bureau of Investigation and launch probes into the agency's search of Trump's Mar-a-Lago residence came in a flood of tweets after Trump himself confirmed that federal law enforcement officers had carried out the raid. Media reports said the FBI was searching for possible boxes of classified materials that Trump might have improperly removed from the White House when he left office.

Keep reading... Show less
{{ post.roar_specific_data.api_data.analytics }}