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

Tag: covid 19

‘Keep Lining Up Body Bags’: GOP Governor Warns On Vaccine Refusal

Reprinted with permission from Alternet

West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice (R) has a message for the residents in his state that refuse to get vaccinated.

On Friday, September 17, Justice held a press conference to appeal to residents as vaccination rates in the state remain stagnant. With just 45 percent of residents vaccinated, West Virginia is still a state with one of the lowest vaccination rates in the United States, Justice is hoping people will begin to take COVID vaccination seriously.

He also made it clear what could happen if people continue to refuse vaccination.

"We're going to run to the fire and get vaccinated right now, or we're going to pile the body bags up until we reach a point in time to where we have enough people that have natural immunities and enough people that are vaccinated," he said.

Justice made it clear yet again that if eligible individuals do not get vaccinated, "they'll keep dying" and "we're just going to keep lining the body bags up and we're going to line them up and line them up."

At the time, Justice made his disappointment clear as he expressed frustration and concern about those who are still unvaccinated. The Republican governor also emphasized that there is no longer time to make a decision.

"It's too late, West Virginia. It's too late for you to decide, you know, 'Oh, we should have gotten vaccinated.' You can't stop this now, what's happened in West Virginia. But you can still save your own life, or lives that are around you, by getting vaccinated."

Justice's latest press conference follows his remarks a few weeks ago in response to the conspiracy theories about the vaccine. At the time, Justice weighed in on the bizarre "microchip" theory.

"Why in the world do we have to come up with these crazy ideas—and they're crazy ideas—that the vaccine's got something in it and its tracing people wherever they go?"

To improve the state's vaccination statistics, the state of West Virginia has even resorted to offering incentives and prizes to encourage residents to get vaccinated.

‘We’re ALIVE!’ Anti-Vax YouTube Couple Dead After Posting Boastful Video

Reprinted with permission from Daily Kos

Another day, another anti-vaxxer death. As the delta variant continues to spread across the country, anti-vaxxers are not only filling up hospitals but facing death. Almost every day, news of a popular anti-vaxxer being hospitalized or dying as a result of COVID-19 seems to make headlines.

In the most recent incident, two YouTubers from Alabama who were popular for online resale tips died as a result of COVID-19 days after they posted a video confirming they would never get vaccinated, AL.com reported. "We are ALIVE and still Reselling on eBay," the couple said in their last video.

The couple, Dusty Graham and Tristan Graham, known as "Alabama Pickers," posted quite a few videos on their YouTube channel denying COVID-19.

The channel has since then been taken down, but their last video remains online reposted through other accounts, including the channel "Vaxx Mann." That channel belongs to the website sorryanitvaxxer.com, which is dedicated to resharing social media posts from people who publicly opposed the COVID-19 vaccine only to later die from the virus.

According to a GoFundMe page set up by their children, Dusty died Thursday after battling COVID-19 for three weeks. His wife had "passed suddenly in her sleep" weeks earlier due to coronavirus complications on August 25.

"Unfortunately Dusty and Tristan have both passed away," the couple's daughter, Windsor Graham, said. "Thank you for all the kind words and helping us during this difficult time. We will be using the money to pay for funeral expenses." The announcement of their deaths follows an announcement from Dusty weeks earlier that he was in the ICU "battling it [COVID-19] out."

The 90-minute video came days before his announcement and addressed in detail why the couple would never get vaccinated and their stance on other COVID-19 measures. "Still haven't gotten the you know what," Dusty said before mimicking a syringe jab. "Still not planning on getting it."

"I've got my own passport. It's called the 'Bill of Rights.' I think this will be all behind us in a couple of years," Dusty continued, referring to his birth certificate. His comments were made around the 41:30 mark.

"I think this will be all behind us in a couple years," Dusty added. "Then they'll be like you don't need that anymore," referring to vaccine passports.

Dusty Graham also claimed that the COVID-19 vaccine is "technically not" a vaccine and called it an "immunity therapy." He noted that both he and his wife survived without a vaccine for a year alongside friends who had contracted the virus. They even spoke about Tristan's cancer trauma and that being a reason why they did not need to be vaccinated.

We are ALIVE and still Reselling on eBay youtu.be

Crazed GOP Candidates Compare Vaccine Mandates To Nazi Genocide

Reprinted with permission from American Independent

Prominent Republicans in multiple states have compared President Joe Biden's recent announcement of vaccine mandates and increased testing to the actions of the Nazi regime in Europe during World War II.

Biden on September 9 announced a plan to be enforced by the Department of Labor requiring, among other efforts, that employers with 100 employees or more to ensure workers are either vaccinated against the coronavirus or tested weekly for it. The new initiative came in response to increased numbers of coronavirus infections, particularly due to the highly contagious delta variant infecting people who have not been vaccinated against the virus.

Mark McCloskey, who is running for the Republican nomination for the Missouri Senate seat held by retiring Sen. Roy Blunt, took offense at the executive order.

"Actually accusing us of being the enemy. That this is 'a pandemic of the unvaccinated.' I mean, if we had Stars of David on our chests 70 years ago, it would be absolutely no different," McCloskey told the audience at a candidate forum on Wednesday. "They're singling us out for persecution, prosecution, and eventually forced inoculation."

Vernon Jones, a Republican candidate for governor in Georgia, sounded a similar note in an interview broadcast Sunday on former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani's radio show.

"We look at what Joe Biden is doing, he wants to mandate the COVID vaccination, and not even for Congress, they're exempt, his staff is exempt. He's acting like Hitler. This is not a police state," said Jones.

The comments echo other recent claims from Republican candidates like Ohio Senate candidate Josh Mandel, who tweeted, "Do NOT comply with the tyranny. When the gestapo show up at your front door, you know what to do," and Pennsylvania Senate candidate Kathy Barnette, who posted a photo of a couple with stars sewn to their clothing, a quote from the 1998 Holocaust documentary The Last Days, and the phrase "Americans are like the frog in boiling water." In May, Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) said rules requiring vaccinations or the use of masks were "just like" the Holocaust.

The Holocaust refers to the period before and during the Second World War during which the Nazi regime and its supporters murdered six million Jewish people and millions of others considered inferior or undesirable.

Although Republicans continue to compare vaccine safety measures to Nazi persecution, the Biden administration's efforts are based on constitutional authority of the federal government that has been reaffirmed under judicial scrutiny. Donald B. Verrilli Jr., who served as solicitor general under President Barack Obama, told the New York Times, "The constitutionality of this regulatory effort is completely clear."

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.

As Markets Rise, Biden Takes A Bow (And Trolls Trump)

"Biden's Stock Market Returns Continue to Trounce Trump's" reads a recent Forbes headline. Sophisticated investors know this, but most of the public may not because Democrats have this self-defeating aversion to boasting about bull markets during their watch.

That seems to have changed under President Joe Biden.

Recall how former President Donald Trump tied every record high to his alleged brilliance as an economic manager. "The Dow Jones Industrial just closed above 29,000!" he tweeted about six weeks before the 2020 election. "You are so lucky to have me as your president. With Joe Hiden' it would crash."

Not quite. Ten months after Biden was declared winner, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was over 34,500. As for the broad-based S&P 500, that stock index has closed at at least 40 all-time highs since Biden has been president.

Happily for Democrats, Biden has claimed his bragging rights. Even better, he's trolling Trump with Trump-like swagger. "The stock market is surging," Biden crowed in a speech honoring labor unions. "It's gone up higher under me than anybody."

Actually, presidents don't have nearly as much control over the stock market as they may claim. New technology influences economic developments, as do black swan events, such as the September 11, 2001, attacks. Then, there was COVID-19.

That said, stocks have certainly done better so far under Biden than under the previous guy. From the last election to late August, all three major indexes — the Dow, S&P 500 and the NASDAQ — had produced higher percentage gains under Biden than in the same period under Trump, according to Forbes.

Stocks did great under President Barack Obama, too, but you heard nary a peep from him about the Dow. And until recently, Biden didn't talk about it either.

Democrats had reasons, not all good ones, for their reticence. In downplaying gains in stock market wealth, they often note that ownership of shares is heavily weighted toward the richest Americans.

That is true. About 92 percent of stocks owned by Americans reside in the top 10 percent of households. We're including stakes in 401(k)s and other retirement plans, and mutual funds.

Nearly half of all Americans own not a single share of stock. And of the households that do, the median stock value is only $40,000.

But these Democrats often underestimate how many Americans rejoice over a rise in stock prices delivering gains of even a few hundred dollars. And many who don't own any stock associate booming markets with general economic prosperity.

Some liberals, meanwhile, have this sourpuss idea that there's something not quite wholesome about making money in the stock market. After the Trump-era tax cuts favoring rich investors, they want to raise taxes on those with very high incomes, and that makes sense.

But then they must also recognize that stock market rallies produce more taxable income. And the sweet part is that proposals to raise tax rates on capital gains and very high incomes have evidently not depressed Americans' lust for stock investing.

Complicating the messaging for Democrats is that well-to-do Americans account for more and more of their voter base. In 2020, 59 percent of counties with a median household income over $80,000 went for Biden, whereas only 39 percent favored Trump.

Biden later swerved back to his party's earlier talking point that the stock market is not the economy. He complained about some people "seeing the stock market and corporate profits and executive pay as the only measure for our economic growth."

But did Biden use the word "exponentially" to describe rising stock prices under his presidency? He sure did. "I'm glad it's gone up," he added, "no problem." Good for him, and if this change in tone continues, good for Democrats.

Follow Froma Harrop on Twitter @FromaHarrop. She can be reached at fharrop@gmail.com. To find out more about Froma Harrop and read features by other Creators writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators webpage at www.creators.com

Now Fox News Will Require Daily Testing Of Unvaccinated Employees

Reprinted with permission from Media Matters

CNN media reporter Oliver Darcy has unearthed a memo distributed at Fox News from Kevin Lord, the company's head of human resources, announcing that while more than 90 percent of its full-time employees claim to have been vaccinated for COVID-19, the company was now set to institute daily testing for everyone else. (Four weeks ago, all Fox employees were required to upload their vaccination status into a human resources database.)

Keep in mind that this is the same network whose actual on-air content has undermined vaccination efforts, celebrated people who refuse to take the vaccines, and even encouraged the use of counterfeit vaccination cards. The network had also previously attacked President Joe Biden in July for instituting vaccine and testing requirements for the federal workforce, even though Fox News had already been doing something very similar with a vaccine passport system for its own offices.

"Soon we will introduce another important health and safety measure for access to our facilities — daily COVID testing for the small group of employees who are not vaccinated or have not provided their vaccination status," Lord wrote in the new memo. "Additional details about this protocol will be shared with the relevant employees in the near future."

Fox is actually going way beyond Biden's policies. The upcoming rule from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration only requires that unvaccinated employees at companies with more than 100 workers would have to test negative once a week, while Fox News is mandating daily testing inside its own walls.

And since late last week, in response to Biden's order for vaccine and testing requirements for large businesses throughout the private sector, the network's talking heads have gone positively ballistic. (At the same time, none of them have quit their jobs at Fox in protest of the network's internal practices.)

  • Fox News contributor Mollie Hemingway said on Thursday night that Biden's order for vaccine and testing requirements was "going to require everybody to stand up and resist and fight."
  • Fox & Friends Weekend co-host Will Cain on Friday night compared proposals for vaccine requirements in order to board an airplane to "the right of Black Americans to enjoy interstate travel."
  • Sean Hannity also declared on Friday night that "you better get the vaccine or Dr. Joe Biden is going to unleash the full force of the federal government against you and your loved ones and your employer. And you will be cancelled in society altogether. You will be shut out of everything."
  • Fox & Friends Weekend co-host Rachel Campos Duffy said on Monday morning that vaccine and testing requirements are "the beginning of the communist-style social credit system," claiming that "this is the beginning of that system where if you're a dissident, if you don't agree with the party in power, you will be punished."
  • And on Monday night, Fox prime-time host Tucker Carlson warned that vaccine requirements would lead to a dystopian future of surveillance and forced psychotropic medications for the conservative population. Then, he suggested that something must be done to stop all of this before his own hypothetical scenario comes true: "Without mass resistance, that is exactly what is coming and it's coming soon, and once it does come, the question is where does it go from there?"

Apparently, "where does it go from there" is a job at Fox News.

Beltway Media Blame Biden For Vaccine Refusal, Ignore Fox Brainwashing

Reprinted with permission from Press Run

Busy extending the list of "crises" that President Joe Biden must face, the Beltway media are busy adding Covid vaccinations as a looming failure for the Democrat, as the nation readies a national mandate for the inoculations.

By putting the onus on Biden for the millions of defiant Trump voters who refuse to take the free, safe, and effective shot even as their neighbors become sick and die around them, the press is boosting the GOP — and missing a huge story.

We're witnessing one of the great mass brainwashings in American political history, as millions of Fox News Covid zombies eagerly swallow an ocean of lies, distortions, and misinformation. Yet the press blames Biden for not being able to convince them otherwise. Worse, the press blames the president without ever acknowledging the large-scale brainwashing that is happening.

Uncomfortable with reporting on a conservative movement that has lost touch with reality, the Beltway media are much more comfortable treating the vaccine story as one about a Democratic president who's failing to properly communicate and persuade. And one who's being outmaneuvered by Republicans.

Incredibly, the Washington Post recently cited as a "political win" for the GOP the fact that "Republican governors in several states have also had success in undermining Biden's efforts to require masks for schoolchildren and others in an effort to limit Covid-19 spread."

In a headline that was later changed, the Associated Press claimed that with his mandate announcement last week Biden had declared "war on the unvaccinated."

The New York Times announced, "Delta's rise has been fueled in part by the inability of Mr. Biden and his administration to persuade millions of vaccine-refusing Americans to inoculate themselves against the virus," in a type of dispatch that has been repeated nonstop by news outlets in recent weeks.

Virtually every reporter is working from the same script: Covid is surging and deaths are up because of Biden's "inability" to persuade vaccine "skeptics." What the Times report never addressed, and virtually none of them ever do, is that the reason millions of Americans still won't get vaccinated is because there is a choreographed, deep-pocketed political and media campaign designed to make sure millions of people don't get vaccinated. Period.

The press wants us to believe this is all just happening, by chance. It's not. Biden is battling powerful forces that reject science and are committed to prolonging the pandemic. That's essential to understand our continued health crisis, yet the press refuses to address it. Holding vaccine dead enders responsible for their actions is just not something they want to do.

Following Biden's Covid address to the nation on Thursday, CNN's Jake Tapper not only deducted points for the president's supposed "scolding tone," but the CNN anchor suggested Trump voters should not be singled out for extending the deadly pandemic. By Tapper's telling, because Trump voters are being lied to about the vaccine by far-right players, it's the liars who are to blame — who are the "villains" — not the millions of people who willingly embrace the falsehoods.

Last month, the Times posted a seven-minute, narrated report about an Arkansas community in the Ozarks with a ridiculously low vaccination/high Covid rate. "Rhetoric on freedom and choice is dissuading people from getting the shot, at a terrible cost," the Times tweeted, while promoting the clip. But who was responsible for the rhetoric that was creating a"terrible cost"? The seven-minute Times report never mentioned Fox News and never addressed who was pumping out all the Covid lies. But the report did capture lots of Arkansas locals spouting virus untruths: "We're talking about an unproven, untested vaccine."

Eight months after the vaccine arrived we know millions of Trump voters won't take it. That's not the news, although it remains a simple story to tell — and to blame Biden. Instead, journalists ought to be telling the harder truths and fixating on the why, and specifically calling out the forces at play.

The Times' Arkansas report did acknowledge "misinformation certainly exists here," but that single sentence represented the entirety of the coverage of that topic. The report also never mentioned "Republican," and instead referenced "leaders" who have politicized the vaccine.

Just yesterday, the Times published a piece, "How Outrage Over Vaccine Mandates Became a Mainstream GOP Stance," and failed to reference Fox News, which has aired hysterical, non-stop attacks on the federal mandate since it was announced. Fact: That's how outrage over common-sense mandates became mainstreamed within the GOP. Also on Sunday, the Times produced, "The U.S. is Falling to the Lowest Vaccination Rates of the World's Wealthiest Democracies," which included not one sentence addressing the why.

More recently, CNN produced its own 10-minute video about another poorly vaccinated Ozarks community, in Carter County Missouri. CNN spent days interviewing locals who regurgitated anti-virus rhetoric: "I ain't takin' that shit." "There's not enough research on it." "I believe if the good Lord wants me right now it doesn't matter if I take a vaccine or if I don't."

CNN omitted all references to Fox News or the Republican Party, and other bad-faith actors who have brainwashed so many people into thinking the Covid vaccine is evil despite the fact that inoculations have been part of everyday American life for decades — school children all across the country are not allowed to attend classes without vaccines for measles, mumps and many other diseases.

As with the Times report, the CNN segment was exceedingly gracious while interviewing Trump voters as they spewed nonstop misinformation about the vaccine and prolonged the pandemic.

Fuming Howard Stern Calls Out Joe Rogan And Anti-Vax ‘Idiots’

Reprinted with permission from Alternet

Right-wing libertarian comedian/podcast host Joe Rogan recently became infected with COVID-19 after refusing to take a vaccine, and he is now crediting the drug Ivermectin with his recovery. But veteran shock jock Howard Stern is saying that Rogan should have received a COVID-19 vaccine in the first place.

Although Ivermectin is primarily used as an anti-parasitic drug for animals, conspiracy theorists have been claiming that animal-grade Ivermectin should be used to prevent or treat COVID-19. But medical experts, including immunologist Dr. Anthony Fauci, have been warning that taking animal-grade Ivermectin could be dangerous; in fact, Fauci strongly advises against it. But the 54-year-old Rogan is claiming that Ivermectin was beneficial for him after he was infected with COVID-19.

Mediaite's Ken Meyer explains, "Upon his recovery, Rogan lashed out at CNN and other critics who called out his promotions of an unproven COVID remedy. This was noticed by Stern, who remarked that Rogan could have also gotten a vaccine — which Stern heralded as a 'cure' — and skipped the whole ordeal."

On his show, Stern — whose program airs on SiriusXM — told long-time co-host Robin Quivers, "I heard Joe Rogan was saying, 'What are you busting my balls (for)? I took horse dewormer, and a doctor gave it to me.' Well, a doctor would also give you a vaccine; so, why take horse-dewormer?"

Stern was vehemently critical of anti-vaxxers during the broadcast, slamming them as "idiots" who are "anti-science."

The 67-year-old shock jock told Quivers, "There's never been one that said, 'I'm so glad I refused. I'm so happy that I can't breathe. This is a wonderful way to die. It was worth it because I didn't take the vaccine.'"

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 75 percent of U.S.-based adults have been at least partially vaccinated for the COVID-19 coronavirus. Nonetheless, many U.S. hospitals are being overwhelmed by unvaccinated COVID-19 patients, and Stern obviously no patience with anti-vaxxers at this point.

"We have no time for idiots in this country anymore," Stern angrily told Quivers. "We don't want you. We want you to all, either go to the hospital, and stay home, die there with your COVID. Don't take the cure, but don't clog up our hospitals with your COVID when you finally get it. Stay home, don't bother with science, it's too late. Go fuck yourself — we just don't have time for you."

Poll: Most Americans Support Vaccine Mandates

Reprinted with permission from American Independent

Despite loud GOP opposition to vaccine requirements issued by both private companies and the federal government, mandating the COVID-19 vaccine remains popular, with a CNN poll released Monday.

That survey found that 51 percent of Americans support requiring the COVID-19 jab for activities like going to work, shopping, or dining it a restaurant, saying it's "an acceptable way to increase the vaccination rate."

Higher numbers support vaccine requirements to participate in specific activities that are major fixtures of American life. For example, 55 percent of Americans support mandating that students get the COVID-19 jab to attend in-person classes — a six-point jump from April, when CNN last surveyed the issue. Another 55 percent back requiring the vaccine to go to a sporting event or concert — up eight points from April. And 54 percent support mandating workers get vaccinated before returning to the workplace, up nine points from April.

Companies that have imposed COVID-19 vaccine requirements say they have seen major jumps in the number of vaccinated workers. Delta Air Lines' chief health officer said on Thursday that the company's decision to impose $200 penalties for unvaccinated workers led to a "huge" surge in the 20,000 unvaccinated employees getting the vaccine.

"Just within the two weeks of the announcement, we've seen nearly 20 percent, or one-fifth, of that 20,000 decide to get the vaccine," Dr. Henry Ting said at a news conference held by the Infectious Diseases Society of America, accordingto a local media report. That surge means 78 percent of Delta employees are now vaccinated.

Tyson Foods saw an even bigger jump in vaccinated employees after announcing a mandate in August. Tyson employees who have at least one dose skyrocketed from 45 percent to 72 percent after the mandate was announced, according to a White House news release laying out President Joe Biden's vaccination mandate plan. In the early days of the pandemic, Tyson Foods saw massive COVID-19 outbreaks in their meatpacking plants that impacted the food supply chain.

Republicans, however, have railed against mandating the COVID-19 vaccine.

Even House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy has gotten in on the politicization of the mandates, tweeting in all capital letters Sunday night, "NO VACCINE MANDATES."

A number of GOP lawmakers and candidates have even used violent rhetoric in their opposition to the new requirements.

Of course, vaccine mandates have been part of American life for more than 170 years.

Both public and private schools require students to be vaccinated against several communicable viruses in order to attend schools. The U.S. military also requires service members to get vaccinated against a host of different viruses.

The GOP opposition to mandates has led to a sharp divide in support for the requirements among the political parties, according to CNN's survey.

CNN found that 80 percent of Democrats say mandates are "an acceptable way to increase the vaccination rate," while just 23 percent of Republicans say the same.

Public health experts say that the pandemic is now one of the "unvaccinated," with nearly all recent deaths from COVID-19 coming from people who did not get the jab.

A new study released Friday from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that the unvaccinated are 11 times more likely to die from the disease than those who are fully vaccinated.

"Looking at cases over the past two months when the Delta variant was the predominant variant circulating in this country, those who were unvaccinated were about four and a half times more likely to get COVID-19, over 10 times more likely to be hospitalized, and 11 times more likely to die from the disease," CDC Director Rochelle Walensky said Friday at a news conference announcing the study's results, CBS News reported.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.