Sunday, May 29, 2022

The GOP will be back at the mid-terms. Will that ascendancy last?

In a piece titled, “Ping-pong Politics Is the New Normal”, Charlie Cook wrote at the appropriately named Cook Political Report:

“The Democratic Party has moved so far to the left and the Republican Party so far right that not only is the center of gravity in each party heading toward the extremes but the parties are each getting narrower; the ideological distance between the most liberal in the Democratic Party and the least liberal is not that great, just as the distance between the most and least conservative elements in the Republican Party continues to shrink. As a result, candidates and policies that were once on the fringes of each party are now squarely in their mainstreams, and what used to be in the mainstream is now the fringe. The parties have each become so self-absorbed, with so little self-awareness, that they seem not to recognize how much they have become caricatures of themselves. Democrats are becoming what Republicans said they were 30 years ago—and vice versa. What were gross exaggerations not that long ago are now appearing more prophetic.

“This game of political ping pong is likely to continue, with policy ricocheting from the left to right and back in two- and four-year intervals, with each party taking turns absorbing the hits until they are thrown out of power. A helluva way to run a country.”

Yes, indeed. It is a helluva way to run a country, but in essence, it’s not necessarily just the voters’ fault. The chronic dissatisfaction that seems to be a permanent fixture of American public opinion is brought about by ideological insanity on the part of one of the two major political parties and a liberal media establishment that is so bent on preventing reform that it lies, cheats, steals and covers for everything Democrats do.

And the Republican establishment usually stands cowardly by and lets them do it.

No wonder the “wrong track” poll number across the administrations never moves a whole lot -- unless you’re talking about Joe Biden’s presidency. The bumbling senile dunce half-century swamp dweller from Delaware has demonstrated a remarkable singular ability to turn people off. It’s gotten so bad that many people who voted for the Democrat ticket have inexorably turned against him. The old crows on ‘The View’ still love the Bidens, but real people plug their noses whenever his mug flashes on TV.

The speculation on whether senile Joe will run for another term continues and shows no sign of abating. And ticked off American voters appear more than ready to kick Nancy Pelosi out of the Speaker’s chair and return ultra-annoying, nasally voiced elitist “Chucky” Schumer to his former perch as chief senate complainer and whiner on Capitol Hill.

But is Cook correct, that this year’s impending electoral correction is just the latest batting of the power ping pong ball across the proverbial net, to last only as long as public opinion allows and inevitably swings the other way and returns Democrats to power as it did in 2006, 2018 and 2020?

Recent political history would suggest this is the case, but there are also a number of signals that point to a more lasting switch in party control. I disagree with Cook that both parties are gravitating towards their polar extremes and becoming more socialist or conservative, respectively. While it’s true that the GOP, under Trump, made strides to throw off the shackles of big business and the country club establishment Republicans, sadly the changeover has been slow and dissatisfying in principled conservatives’ estimation.

Democrats, on the other hand, have almost completed a full conversion to Bernie Sanders’ version of the big government dark side. The party under Biden, Pelosi and Schumer no longer pretends to be “moderate” and for the working man and woman; no, they’re too busy praying at the Al Sharpton/George Floyd altar of “woke” racial extremism where even proposing to punish criminals leads to accusations of disloyalty and threats of violence.

There is no “moderation” in the Democrat party any longer. West Virginia senator Joe Manchin comes as close to the center as Democrats get these days, but ask your typical leftist agitator what he, she, or “it” thinks of Manchin and you’re likely to be harangued with negativity. Democrats managed to pass a $1.9 trillion COVID “relief” bill and tack on a $1.2 trillion phony “infrastructure” package last year, but it’s not enough for the kooks to sit back and count their cash.

Democrats have also designated their cultural hills to die on -- namely, the idea that “birthing humans” have a right to terminate their pregnancies up to the moment of birth (or beyond) and the notion that biological females can declare themselves men and vice versa. One can’t switch TV news channels without seeing some leftist fringe nut vowing defiance and predicting doom for the country if Roe v. Wade is overturned. And if these same people had their way, you’d believe that every other person is gay or bisexual and contemplating transitioning instead of a minutely small percentage of the population claiming the status.

Decent Americans are fed up with the Democrats’ taking over of normally non-partisan institutions and making them “woke”. Think about it; the left owns the bureaucracy, academia, culture (Hollywood and music outside of country music), corporate America (anyone want to buy Coca Cola these days?) and nearly all of the country’s major cities. Even the once semi-conservative medical profession has been infiltrated and taken over by statists.

I believe that the COVID episode changed folks politically. As more facts come out about the virus’s origin and how the government authorities mishandled the matter, ordinary Americans are seeing through the ruse Democrats concocted. Not only did liberals not eradicate COVID, they spent trillions to wipe out something that couldn’t be swept away. And they lied about it. And they’re STILL wearing masks!

Voters don’t want unrealistic pie-in-the-sky promises that can’t ever be accomplished. That’s what Democrats offer. How would anyone “cure” climate change? How do you “lower prices” in a private economy like senile Joe has repeatedly promised? It all smacks of more government control and more subsidies. Republicans, for the most part, guarantee only that they will expand energy production and try to limit taxes in order to inspire economic growth.

Democrats want to “give” it to you, paid by someone else through high taxes. And they’ll be “woke” while they’re doing it, too. Will anyone want to go back to the way things are at present?

American voters have always been fickle and the “ping pong” nature of politics has tended to switch partisan control back-and-forth often. But one can’t help but feel the overzealous Democrats have really done it to themselves this time. We can only hope people grasp the significance.


Not Just China: The US Government, Universities Are Hiding Evidence On The Origin Of COVID-19

An article published last week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) has ignited a new debate over the origin of COVID-19.

Renowned economist Jeffrey Sachs and Dr. Neil Harrison, a professor of molecular pharmacology and therapeutics at Columbia University, laid out one of the most comprehensive overviews of the evidence yet that COVID-19 could potentially have emerged from a lab in Wuhan, China. However, unlike most previous analyses, Harrison and Sachs point out that there are troves of untapped evidence potentially available right here in the United States that have not yet been investigated.

Attempts to investigate what was going on at the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV) in the leadup to the COVID-19 pandemic have thus far been stifled by a lack of cooperation from the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). However, the two authors allege that more than a half dozen institutions in the United States have evidence that could prove useful in finding where COVID-19 came from, if only they would make it public.

Most of these institutions are government agencies — the National Institutes of Health (NIH), National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), the Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA), Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). The authors also name the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC) and University of California-Davis (UCD) as well as EcoHealth Alliance (EHA), the non-profit which worked directly with the WIV on bat-based coronavirus research.

Neither UCD nor UNC, including Baric specifically, responded to requests for comment for this story. (RELATED: Trump’s CDC Director Was Reportedly Sidelined By Fauci After Urging Him To Investigate Lab Leak)

The article has breathed new life into the search for COVID-19 origins, with many in the scientific community applauding Sachs and Harrison for speaking out. “The authors also show how information has been withheld at every turn, even by US taxpayer-funded agencies, and that the “experts” are no longer entitled to the benefit of the doubt. There must be vastly more transparency for trust in science to start to be restored,” Dr. Louis Nemzer, an associate professor researching biophysics at Nova Southeastern University, told the Daily Caller.

The government agencies named were involved in some fashion with funding or overseeing research at the WIV or done by EHA. UNC employs Dr. Ralph Baric, a scientist who developed a groundbreaking method of inserting new genetic code into pathogens without leaving any evidence, and used it to make coronaviruses more dangerous as part of research projects. UCD maintained a substantial database of SARS-like CoV genetic sequences as part of the government-funded PREDICT project, and EHA was the primary intermediary between U.S. government agencies — and their grant money — and Wuhan researchers.

None of these institutions have fully publicized the work they’ve done involving coronavirus research. According to Sachs and Harrison, releasing their internal communications, biological samples and other research findings could prove critical in determining if COVID-19 is in fact naturally occurring, or same from a lab in Wuhan, China.

“DARPA has never funded directly, nor indirectly as a subcontractor, any activity or researcher associated with the EcoHealth Alliance or Wuhan Institute of Virology,” the agency told the Daily Caller. The other government agencies mentioned in the PNAS article did not offer comment when contacted.

Some of the information which could be of use is, for instance, the data removed from an NIH gene database at the request of Chinese researchers in early 2020, or a full accounting of Baric’s research involving enhancing pathogens to make them more dangerous, or details on the fieldwork conducted by EHA with their Chinese colleagues.

Sachs and Harrison call for a full release of this information, and, if necessary, a Congressional inquiry. (RELATED: Chemical Weapons Expert: UK Government Officials Secretly Believe Lab-Leak Caused COVID Pandemic)

“The PNAS article, wonderful as it is, is just an article. What will prompt an investigation of the origins of Covid-19 is when members of Congress from both political parties come together and make it happen. It is regrettable and embarrassing that House and Senate Democrats have been largely unwilling to do so thus far,” said Gary Ruskin, executive director and co-founder of nonprofit public health watchdog U.S. Right To Know. “We need our members of Congress to unearth NIH top to bottom, figure out what went wrong and restore public trust.”

Republican Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul told the Daily Caller that if Republicans win control of Congress in November, investigations may be in order: “Throughout the pandemic, I’ve repeatedly called for Congress to fully investigate the origins of COVID-19. When Republicans retake the majority in November and I’m chairman of a committee, I will have subpoena power and the ability to thoroughly investigate the origins of this virus that has plagued our nation for far too long.”

This step is particularly notable for Sachs. He was once the chair of The Lancet’s COVID-19 commission, which was formed by the elite scientific journal to investigate the origins of COVID-19. However, in 2021, Sachs dissolved the commission, saying that too many of its members had conflicts of interest with EHA to proceed.

The Lancet itself had a conflict of interest with EcoHealth. Early on in the pandemic, it published a letter spearheaded by Peter Daszak, the head of EcoHealth, calling the lab-leak theory a conspiracy theory harmful to Chinese researchers.

“The fact that Jeffrey Sachs wrote the article shows that people are tired of making apologies for Peter Daszak’s egregious conflicts of interest,” Nemzer said.

Now, Sachs is singing a different tune. In the PNAS article, he and Harrison point out a number of coincidences that seem too strange to explain away under the natural origin theory. SARS-CoV-2 has a sequence of eight amino acids on its spike protein that are exactly identical to an amino acid sequence vital for human lung function. The closest bats in the wild that carry similar coronaviruses are at least 1,000 miles away from Wuhan, where the first outbreak of the pandemic occurred. In 2014, Baric, EHA and WIV received a grant from NIAID to enhance the infectiousness of bat-based coronaviruses.

“Blanket denials from the NIH are no longer good enough. Although the NIH and USAID have strenuously resisted full disclosure of the details of the EHA-WIV-UNC work program, several documents leaked to the public or released through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) have raised concerns,” Sachs and Harrison write.

“These research proposals make clear that the EHA-WIV-UNC collaboration was involved in the collection of a large number of so-far undocumented SARS-like viruses and was engaged in their manipulation within biological safety level (BSL)-2 and BSL-3 laboratory facilities, raising concerns that an airborne virus might have infected a laboratory worker.”

There was already one U.S.-led investigation into COVID-19’s origins. In 2021, President Joe Biden ordered an intelligence community investigation which ultimately turned up nothing conclusive. But the methods used and materials reviewed in that investigation, the PNAS article points out, have not been made public.

The momentum for a second look, this time from independent observers, is growing. “EcoHealth Alliance, USAID, DTRA, and the NIH have made it clear that they will not voluntarily release unredacted information to, and will not voluntarily cooperate with, members of Congressional oversight committees. The Perspective by Sachs and Harrison will not change their position.,” Rutgers University microbiologist Dr. Richard Ebright told the Daily Caller.

“The target audiences for the Perspective by Sachs and Harrison are not EcoHealth Alliance, USAID, DTRA, and the NIH. The target audiences are the National Academy of Sciences, the White House, and the majority party in Congress, which, to date, have resisted calls for an investigation with subpoena power and compelled testimony.”




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