Sooner or later, COVID will subside and likely become endemic — as much a part of life as the flu. And with it, the newfound power of the public health technocrats would also dwindle.
They know that and it doesn’t make them happy. So, people have started to advocate for a “new normal” – I hate that term – that would not simply restore society to a state where it accepts respiratory disease as a part of life, but rather constantly challenge us to the presence and keeps busy preventing disease.
To this end, bioethicist Ezekiel Emanuel and two co-authors wrote three columns in the Journal of the American Medical Association. There is not enough space to reproduce them in full. However, they are free, so all readers can access them through the provided links.
First, they concede that the current “No COVID” policy is unenforceable. That’s correct.
Then they argue that our response to the endemic occurrence of COVID should be to treat all respiratory diseases as one thing by summarizing the statistics. Out: „A National Strategy for the ‚New Normal‘ of Life with Covid“:
The “new normal” requires recognizing that SARS-CoV-2 is just one of several circulating respiratory viruses, which also include influenza, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), and others. COVID-19 must now be considered as one of the risks posed by all respiratory viral diseases combined. Many of the measures taken to reduce transmission of SARS-CoV-2 (e.g. ventilation) will also reduce transmission of other respiratory viruses. Therefore, policymakers should abandon previous public health categorizations, such as deaths from pneumonia and influenza or pneumonia, influenza and COVID-19, and focus on a new category: the overall risk of all respiratory viral infections.
Of course, the whole point would be to terrify society. Because if public health officials were constantly releasing respiratory disease statistics, summarizing all “cases” of flu, pneumonia, and other respiratory illnesses — along with the hospitalizations and deaths they cause — our media hysteria would keep us in a state of constant fear and empower our public health technocrats to keep taking “emergency measures” to “protect us.”
And imagine what the teachers’ unions would do with it! Our poor children.
Do you think I’m paranoid? The authors admit the intention:
Although the seasonal influenza, RSV and other respiratory viruses that circulated before SARS-CoV-2 were harmful, the US has not considered them a sufficient threat to impose emergency measures for over a century. People have lived quite normally with the threat of these viruses, although more could have been done to reduce their risks.
That does not work at all!
The authors would like a “peak week threshold” to be established – based on pre-COVID statistics, which are lower than now – that would allow health officials to kick into gear:
This peak week risk threshold serves at least 2 basic functions. This risk limit triggers policy recommendations for emergency implementation of mitigation and other measures. In addition, healthcare systems could rely on this threshold to plan what bed and staffing capacity they typically need and when to take congestion measures.
Do you see what I mean?
The authors would then use the fear generated to force massive investments in public health infrastructure and the expansion of bureaucracy. The end result would be a health technocracy without end.
The second column further illustrates the above point. Out: „A National Strategy for COVID-19: Testing, Surveillance, and Mitigation Strategy“:
Like the flu, SARS-CoV-2 is spread through aerosols. Proven public health strategies can reduce the risks and complications of respiratory viral infections, including SARS-CoV-2. Risk reduction strategies should be put in place, including new enforceable Occupational Safety and Health Administration standards specifically mandating masking, distancing and ventilation in workplaces.
In the third column, the authors advocate draconian vaccine regulations. Out „A National Strategy for COVID-19 Countermeasures“:
The government should accelerate the development of a universal coronavirus vaccine that protects against known coronaviruses, including SARS-CoV-2. A vaccine with broader protection would allow the world to limit the impact of emerging variants and respond quickly to novel coronaviruses likely to emerge in the future. There can be trade-offs between broader protection against serious disease and less effectiveness against infection…
An electronic platform for vaccination certificates needs to be created to make it easier to check vaccination status and track post-vaccination infections. Relying on forgerable paper ID cards is unacceptable in the 21st century. Current government immunization information systems are incomplete, fragmented and non-interoperable, hampering national efforts to control the virus. We need a national e-vaccination certification platform like the SMART Health Card that ensures interoperability between states and countries, protects individual privacy, and is based on open-source technology that is publicly available to allay concerns about government surveillance .
While this is controversial, it is not new. State and national databases are also used for other information, e.g. B. for driver’s license, social security, voter registration and for certain health purposes, such as. B. organ donation.
Strict guidelines will guard against abuse, of course… Considering what they wrote about summarizing all respiratory diseases as a hazard, their prescription would not be limited to COVID.
Again, don’t believe me, read for yourself:
Tremendous strides have been made in the rapid development of new COVID-19 vaccines and therapeutics. Still, these efforts are not enough to achieve a “new normal” in which the combined risk of all viral respiratory diseases, including COVID-19, does not exceed the risk in the pre-COVID-19 years. The US needs to invest in variant-specific vaccines, alternative vaccine delivery mechanisms, and research into optimal vaccination strategies. Effective vaccines have real value in halting the spread of COVID-19 and serious diseases, but their usefulness will be limited without near-universal coverage.
Nobody objects to keeping statistics, properly monitoring diseases, developing new vaccines and therapeutics, improving ventilation in schools and workplaces, and providing better access to testing and effective masks for those who wish.
But the authors have much more in mind. They pave the way for the introduction of a public health technocracy into society that would constantly declare emergencies based on peak-week respiratory disease statistics to limit personal freedom in the name of disease prevention.
No, damn it.