This is the revolution?
Plus: Is Biden's OSHA mandate even possible? ... and There will be a Racketeer Podcast coming soon!
Gov. Gavin Newsom lives to sin another day. If you remember, California residents collected over 1.5 million signatures after Newsom, magister equitum, ordered the hoi polloi to become shut-ins banned from showing their dirty faces in public, while he dined at the exclusive French Laundry with his exclusive moneyed friends.
Now, the media is noting how the recall signature drive would have failed if not for a friendly judge granting more time because of the pandemic. The same media is also noting how Delta is sweeping through the nation, and more draconian measures are needed to stop the unvaccinated from ruining their lavish parties.
Maskless and air-kissing among the rich who paid $30,000 to attend the Met Gala was the revolutionary Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, sporting a “Tax the Rich” gown. Satirists and former Soviet dissidents would drool to mine such a rich vein of irony.
Note that only the proles: media and servants, debased themselves with mandatory masks. The pure breath of the rich and the progressive revolutionary is above such measures. These vaccinated souls must be protected from the unwashed public.
My son is reading The Hunger Games books, and we’ve been watching the movies as he finishes each one. This comes to mind: I thought District One only existed in fiction, but now I see it’s very real. I was waiting for JLaw to emerge in a fire gown.
Seeing rich people who fawn over “tax the rich” is--forgive me--rich. As Erick Erickson noted (please subscribe to Erick!), the line between fawning the lobbying is quite blurry when you know that Democrats are pushing to overturn the elimination of the SALT deduction. That’s the State and Local Tax deduction on federal taxes which rich bicoastal elites enjoyed, where they could pay and pay for their local unionized, subsidized, socialized lifestyles and take every penny out of money they would have paid to the federal government.
The lovely mooching class loves to pretend they agree with “Tax the Rich” as long as their money can buy a tax deduction to pay for it. Perhaps the greatest achievement of the Republican Party during the Trump administration was trashing the SALT deduction. It exposed the rich bicoastal elites for what they are--robber barons who play Robin Hood with government money, and create third word societies like San Francisco where they can live like royalty and the once livable streets are covered with feces and used needles (paid for by the city).
Glenn Greenwald plunged his literary knife into Nancy “do my hair” Pelosi, who packed in the rich like sardines at tables, maskless, while masked faceless servants poured their wine. She charged $100 to sit at the far end and for $29,000 you could be named honorary “chair” and she might not forget your name for 10 minutes longer.
The rich are very worried about COVID, but only when the not-rich public jam the hospitals they might need to use. This is the revolution? Overthrow the rich, so the rich can rule again.
Now Newsom has won, and at least he won by a big enough margin for Republican Larry Elder to concede by 10pm, Pacific Time. Regardless of the splittle-flecked ravings of TFG and his remora claiming California’s election was rigged, Elder lost, fair and square, and many Californians will forget about him within a week.
Democrats will take that victory as if it gives them a renewed mandate to blame and persecute the unvaccinated (and by “unvaccinated,” they really mean anyone who doesn’t fully support President Biden in everything he does) for all our national ills, continue stupid and useless policies to fight global warming (all we need is more nuclear), and spend America into bankruptcy. Thank God for Joe Manchin is all can say.
Is Biden’s OSHA mandate even possible?
There’s been a great deal written about whether President Biden’s OSHA mandate is legal. But I’ve been doing some math. The data I’ve seen in various places pegs the top-end of U.S. testing at between 500 and 600 per hundred thousand. This yields about two million tests per day. The math works out.
There are somewhere around 70 to 80 million American adults who are not yet vaccinated. Let’s say that 50 million are in the workforce, working for companies with over 100 employees and therefore subject to the OSHA emergency standard. The mandate requires employers with over 100 employees to test all unvaccinated workers every week for COVID-19.
That means 50 million tests per week. If the U.S. ran its testing at the pandemic maximum of 2,000,000 tests per day, every day, that’s 14 million tests per week. It seems to me, in the best case scenario, that we’re going to come up short. We would need to increase our testing capacity by 357 percent to even begin to test everyone every week.
I reached out to an industry association, the American Clinical Laboratory Association, which represents labs that, among other things, do COVID-19 testing. As you might guess, the ACLA came out in favor of Biden’s testing plan. I asked them if their members had the capacity to test everyone. They haven’t answered my email.
One possible solution is self-testing--the at-home rapid tests. Some data I’ve found indicates a false negative rate around 12% for those tests, if they’re administered properly. That means for each 100 employees tested who are positive, up to 12 could have COVID-19 and spread it around before they see symptoms. I also don’t know how many of these tests are currently circulating, how long their shelf life is, and how many can be produced on a weekly basis.
I have serious questions as to whether the OSHA testing policy is even possible.
That means the $14,000 fine for not testing employees is bogus. The government can’t fine companies for not doing what can’t be done even if they tried. The carrot (get everyone vaccinated) doesn’t work without the stick (fines for not testing).
If all that’s true, then someone at the White House likely knows all this. It means the entire COVID-19 employer mandate was nothing but a canard. It was a story to get everyone’s mind (and the news) off of the debacle in Afghanistan. But I’m cynical.
I’d like to see if my math makes sense to anyone else.
The Racketeers all got together last night and recorded a podcast. I need to get it edited and posted to this site. I expect it will be up tonight. Look for it!
Actually, David Thornton found himself in my neck of the suburbs of North Metro Atlanta and came over for dinner. We had an enjoyable time and no goats were harmed. We looped in Jay from New Hampshire via FaceTime and fired up the recording equipment.
We discussed Newsom, Gen. Milley, and my questions about the OSHA mandate. Listen in when it posts!
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I'm going to have to get a new Steve Bingo card - I would not have predicted you being against the federal SALT deduction, which penalizes spending happening at a more local level in the interest of filling federal coffers.
If you're taking listener requests, I'd love to hear an expanded take on it that not only includes the partisan warfare aspects of it (penalizing Democrats who pay more state and local taxes), but also the financial aspects and whether it's a policy in the wrong direction for those of us wishing to pull more decision making and spending (and taxing) to the local level where those policies are more accountable to affected citizens.
Looking forward to the podcast. When I saw "revolution" in the title, I was expecting more of a ripping into of General Milley, and less "Hunger Games". As soon as that's up, I'll be adding your RSS feed to my podcatcher app.
Keep up the good work, guys!
I’m looking forward to the upcoming podcast. It’ll be nice to hear you and David discuss various topics aurally. I didn’t follow the Racket News actively until around March or so of this year. But I do remember the podcast you had with your brother Jay and David in the aftermath of 1-6.
As for the SALT federal tax deduction, I’m kind of straddling the fence on this issue. I haven’t really been impacted all that much to the changes to SALT from the tax reform legislation a few years back. I also haven’t paid much attention to the issue until now, so I’m hoping to get some of you and David’s more detailed and nuanced, in depth takes on It and other ideas for reforming our tax system at the federal level.