Saturday, May 9, 2020

Which side are you on?

The faced book has removed a propaganda thing claiming that wearing masks actually makes you more vulnerable the Covid 19 and is a get rich scheme cooked up by the vaccination tyrants. Somehow it  benefits Bill Gates, like he needs more money.   Good on the faced book for exercising intelligent editorial control. To those who claim this violates the first amendment: it does not because the government is  not involved.  And to my dear friend who argued that there are two sides to every dispute... read on. 

Certainly there are two sides to every athletic dispute.

 There are two sides to the argument about whether the presnut had the largest inaugural crowd in history if you are willing to see aerial photos of the Obama inaugural crowd and the current presnut's crowd and not believe your own eyes. There are two sides to the argument over the presnut's continuing support from Russia only if you are not willing to believe the latest findings of the Republican dominated Senate Intelligence Committee or the ongoing work of the CIA and FBI and NSA.  Or maybe you think Russian domination is a good thing. 

There are two sides to the theory of evolution, but you can only teach one of them in school science class.  That's because one of those sides is science.  The workings of evolution have been observed, measured and documented by trained scientists using standard, widely recognized processes and verified by more trained scientists (and many many 10th grade biology classes) in the 200 plus years since Darwin took  his little boat ride around the world.   The other side is religion.  You can teach it in a class on religious belief generally, but you can't label it as science because it  is not.  (See Kitzmiller v. Dover Schools).

There are two sides to the argument over global warming if you fail to recognize the rising temperatures, massive wild fires, freaky tornadoes and storms.  It's another of those arguments you don't want to be on the wrong side of. 

Two sides to every argument admits of disparate approaches to difficult problems but it does not admit to different facts.  It's all about the evidence. It's about rational people critically evaluating the demonstrable facts and deciding what is true or not.  If you assume that all people should have equal economic opportunity then the facts of trickle down economics, established since the turn  of the 20th Century, are that it benefits only the wealthy and leads to substantial inequality.  (And if you hate big government it's worth noting that large or small, government has the capacity to interfere in the marketplace and for the last 50 years at least, such interventions have benefited the rich.)   Trickledowners tell the truth: you don't care about economic opportunity for all.  You believe wealthy people rule and poor people are expendable. 

 The facts about vaccines are that we humans have been vaccinating ourselves for centuries.  The Chinese invented smallpox vaccine more than 1,000 years ago.   John Adams was following a well established practice when he gave each of his children a scratch on the arm and smeared it with the blood of a soldier who had died of smallpox. Louis Pasteur invented a rabies vaccine in 1885 and by 1930 there were vaccines for diphtheria, tetanus, anthrax, cholera, plague, typhoid, tuberculosis. The polio vaccine was years in the making.  When it was perfected it was given to every citizen.  (I was in a cohort of 1.8 million children who got the shot in 1954 as a part of the first mass trial run.  In  a model of government efficiency, children were bused to nearby collection sites (the Weir, KS,  parish hall in my case)  lined up, inoculated with an enormous needle (I was 6) and carted home.  Researchers successfully  targeted other common childhood diseases such as measles, mumps, and rubella and these vaccines were routine for newborn children by the 1990s.

Vaccines became controversial in the late 1990s, when a report was published in France that claimed a connection between vaccinations and autism.  This study has been frequently and effectively discredited., but it persists in the minds of the same people who believe that Bill Gates needs more money and that the Deep  State exists.

There are two sides to the question of whether the government should or should not be involved in combating the virus (or whether big government is better than small government).  We are seeing that argument gamed out in real time, and the evidence so far indicates the less government crowd is not doing such a good job.  Governments actively engaged in the fight (New Zealand, Korea, Germany to name a few) are getting control of the virus. Total victim numbers are declining and the opportunity to safely open up (with limitations) is on the horizon.  In the USA the victim rate continues to rise, the dead pile up, and efforts to "open up" the economy are scaring hell out of rational citizens.  One side of this argument is you embrace your freedom.  The other is it could kill you.  

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