July 31, 2020
Quote of the Week: “The risk of COVID-19 mortality for children is about 0.1 per 100,000. So another way to say that, it’s one in a million. Now, I’m not trying to belittle that. I’m just trying to make sure we look at it proportional. Because if you do the same thing for influenza deaths for school-age children over the last five years, they’re anywhere from five to 10 times greater."
Quote of the Week: “Our data indicate that children are at far greater risk of critical illness from influenza than from COVID-19. SARS-CoV-2 appears to behave differently in children and adolescents than other common respiratory viruses, such as influenza, on which much of the current guidance regarding school closures is based.”
Quote of the Week: “Schools are fundamental to child development and well-being and provide our children with academic instruction, social and emotional skills, safety, reliable nutrition, physical/speech and mental health therapy, and opportunities for physical activity, among other benefits.”
In This Issue:
PANDEMIC PANIC PERSISTS
The mania, propaganda, misinformation, intimidation, and rejection of reason continues apace regarding the pandemic.
Just when it seems there really isn’t anything more to say, government does something stupid and the misery is propagated and perpetuated.
The latest foolishness comes to the masses in the form of Tim Jong Walz’s edict regarding school openings this coming school year.
Since the Watchdog is one of the last objective news sources in Minnesota, let’s give our Dear Leader some credit – it could have been worse.
Many readers were expecting that The Exalted One would either dictate distance learning or some sort of hybrid model for the entire state.
Thus, his Rube Goldberg matrix of rolling case averages isn’t all that bad.
No word on whether the same U of M grad students who concocted the Minnesota pandemic model crafted this matrix.
Of course, the matrix has already created a host of problems that apparently escaped the beta tests run at the gov’s manse in Saint Paul.
First, some districts cross county boundaries. How to account for cases when they are calculated on the matrix by county? Are the two to be blended? Weighted?
Second, the Saint Cloud public schools have pointed out that the prison accounts for a significant portion of cases. Should they be counted when inmates have no chance of contact with the public at large?
Third, the matrix offers no meaningful opportunity for parents to plan their work and family schedules. There is no certainty offered parents.
Fourth, while it is laudable that the policy offers a measure of local control, it is maddening for school districts that this decision was rendered in late July.
In other words, if the governor was going to essentially kick the can back at school districts, why wait until nearly August?
For the Watchdog, the school policy is a mixed bag.
This publication is pleasantly shocked that Walz didn’t knuckle under to the teacher union and shut it all down until Christmas.
But the matrix falls short on a number of fronts, especially in that it offers so much uncertainty moving forward.
QUESTIONS FOR WALZ
It’s aggravating, but not surprising that the media was treated Governor Walz and his staff with kid gloves with respect to questioning key aspects of administration decision making.
Tom Hauser of KSTP is the only journalist who has consistently represented the profession well by asking tough but fair questions.
It’s rather stunning to consider that there has been no real reporting of key issues regarding the primary issue impacting the lives of Minnesotans.
For example, why was the pandemic model so wrong?
When will the model be updated? Will it be regularly updated moving forward?
What metrics will be used to determine when you will relinquish your unilateral powers under the peacetime emergency declaration?
Why do you think it is good public policy to make decisions that are normally made in concert with the legislative branch in unilateral fashion?
What is your definition of “emergency” as that term is used in chapter 12 of Minnesota statutes?
What is the strategic goal of these peacetime unilateral executive orders? At the start, citizens were told you were exercising these powers as a resource preservation measure, to keep hospitals from being overwhelmed with COVID-19 patients. Now, it seems that the strategic goal is virus suppression or elimination. What is the goal here? When will we know the goal has been achieved? What are the metrics you are using to determine progress towards the strategic goal?
Asking these questions and pursuing them until an answer is given would be a great place to start.
NAZI IMAGERY HYPOCRISY
The Watchdog strongly supports the long-standing practice of refraining from the use of Nazi imagery and rhetoric to attack political opponents.
Use of this imagery and rhetoric diminishes the historic and solemn place of the Holocaust as one of the darkest chapters in human history and cynically co-opts that overwhelming tragedy in the service of a political issue.
Sadly, that practice has been under assault, as the use of Nazi imagery and rhetoric has proliferated as our civil discourse becomes coarse, virulent, and vile.
It is also disturbing to see the hypocrisy surrounding the issue, as many parties to today’s political discourse are quick to call out the use of this imagery by their opponents while excusing it when used by allies.
Minnesota GOP chair Jennifer Carnahan deserves credit for quickly condemning the Wabasha County GOP for using such imagery in a recent social media post.
This publication wonders when Democrat leaders will condemn a recent statement from long-time gadfly Jesse Jackson, who recently co-opted the Holocaust by comparing federal law enforcement personnel to Hitler’s Brown shirts.
Jackson’s statement included these words:
“Hitler had his Brown shirts and Mussolini had his Black shirts, now Donald Trump has his camouflage shirts.”
“Comparisons to Hitler are always explosive, but the comparison is apt.”
“Hitler’s bullyboys operated on the fringes or outside of the law to violently intimidate Germany’s leftists and finally to exterminate Jews. Trump’s bully boys are operating on the fringes or outside the law to violently intimidate America’s progressives and people of color who are exercising their First Amendment right to protest racial injustice.”
This is especially true considering that Jackson has a well-documented history of anti-semitic and anti-Israel comments.
Waiting for Democratic condemnation.
Welcome to my web site!
I created this website in response to governmental waste and abuse in Anoka County.
Many taxpayers don’t know that our local governments spend millions of tax dollars every year on things like public relations teams, lobbyists, and junkets to places like Hawaii.
Since there seemed to be no place to turn for the “other side” of these issues, I created the Anoka County Watchdog. My intent is to create a one-stop-shop where concerned taxpayers can find fact-supported information and other resources to counter the governmental machine. Many people want to confront their elected officials regarding waste and abuse but feel they don’t have the information they need to make an effective argument. This web site offers that information.
Some of our elected officials in Anoka County have become arrogant and unresponsive, forgetting that they work for the very people who put them in office. It’s high time to hold them accountable for their decisions.
Harold E. Hamilton
US Mail: Anoka County Watchdog
C/O K Solutions LLC
3083 Victoria Street
Roseville, MN 55113
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