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Lord Ratner

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Lord Ratner last won the day on October 23

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  1. Considering how much money we've spent, it's been a huge frustration since about May 2020 that the govt hasn't been running a huge series of studies and tests to get meaningful data on COVID. Seems like most information is coming from other countries. Also, I'm not particularly concerned with case rate. As with most diseases, severe hospitalization and death is the important metric. Regarding the flu, it's always been dangerous for seniors to get influenza, so that fits with the rates you posted. And very young kids as well. COVID is worse, but COVID is also very new. The susceptible population is currently adjusting (dying) to the "new normal." COVID-19 just happens to skip over kids entirely. Lucky for us really.
  2. On global warming you are simply incorrect. The models from the late 90s and early 2000s all had to be massively revised to fit the data, and the data itself had to be revised to fit the temperature record. Far too much to go into here, but suffice it to say that a model is not measured by how well it matches the past, but by how well it predicts the future. The ipcc has only recently gotten to some predictions that are remotely feasible, and those predictions have been revised downward so much that the once catastrophic threat of global warming is now largely going to be a matter of human migration. So in other words, no change from the last 300,000 years. But that's not really the point anyways, the point is that if you are going to portray CO2 based climate change is the greatest threat facing humanity, then being against nuclear power is an impossible to reconcile position. And as you said, the Democrats have been 100% against nuclear. It took a while for me to realize why, but it's the anti-human strain of environmentalism that has taken over the cause. That's also another conversation, right now we're just going to stick with the gas-lighting inconsistencies. As I said, this problem is not limited to liberals. I have been rather vocal about criticizing Trump's many character flaws. And it drives me nuts when conservatives defend him as a family man, or somehow a good person. He's not. But in the same breath, anybody arguing that his administration's policies were somehow equal to his character is simply being disingenuous. And even today I have yet to find a liberal who decries Trump as the most dangerous president in US history who can list off any meaningful policy positions that were outside of the standard conservative worldview. On inflation, I never made an argument that the liberals caused it. These are usual political discussions. The point is the outright denial that it exists. Or that, now that we admit it exists, that it's somehow a good thing. Your last paragraph is spot on. The average voter simply doesn't have the bandwidth to give a shit about issues that aren't affecting their daily life. Somehow the political class figured out a way to turn politics into team sports, so instead of voting for the two or three issues that affect you and your family directly during that specific election, now the voters will actively vote against their interests in order to support the team. This is why we see the same states vote the same way every election now, when 40 years ago presidents would routinely win the vast majority of the electoral college. It's troubling, and I don't have a great answer. But people like you need to spend more time talking to liberals just like people like me need to spend more time talking to conservatives. And convincing them to talk to each other more. There was a great balance with all of this in the past, because politicians have always tried to divide us, but social media changed everything, making it possible to isolate yourself from opposing views and thus caricature the opposition in ways that were never feasible.
  3. Thanks for the analysis. Interesting to get another take. I think what you're missing-- no, missing isn't fair because you got a taste of it from your nurse friend-- what you underestimate is the scale. This wasn't just people having an opinion and disagreeing with you. Or calling you an idiot. This was a coordinated campaign to suppress "wrongthink" by the media-political class. - the efficacy of masks - COVID not being high-risk for healthy adults under 50 - the Wuhan lab-leak theory - the (potential) efficacy of ivermectin and remdesivir - the president of the United States - the (now inescapably true) Hunter Biden story The social media platforms literally declared certain speech verboten. Yeah, they are private companies, but they did it to the cheering of elected Democrats. Now there are hearings where elected Democrats are *outraged* that they aren't blocking more. Democrats, the once-champions of free speech, are now openly (and sometimes violently) against free speech, unless of course you agree with them. And guys like you, without intending to, have fallen right into the trap of well-it-must-be-true-if-the-trumpeters-hate-it. And yes, conservatives have fallen into this trap many times as well. But the pandemic has been overwhelmingly slanted in one direction, with only one side arguing for the *clear* violation of personal liberties while actively misrepresenting the evidence and proudly suppressing opposing (and scientifically supported) views. What's the quote? First they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out—because I was not a socialist. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out— because I was not a trade unionist. Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—because I was not a Jew. Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me. Everyone seems to have forgotten the ideals behind the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, because they live fat, dumb, and happy little lives free from the horrors of the previous 300,000 years of human existence. Turns out The Matrix was right, and humans can't handle a system where they are (overwhelmingly) free from struggle and misery, so they must create it from nothing. And in our profound lack of persecution we have forgotten what persecution feels like, making us much too comfortable with persecuting those who don't please our delicate sentiments. Of course, the celebrities who have found themselves "cancelled" have become remarkably supportive of free-speech and civil discourse after a career of tarring and feathering conservatives as backwoods, inbred, hateful, racists/sexists/homophobes. Now we have graduated to compelled action *of your children.* The vaccine technology that didn't exist until last year for a disease that primarily kills people hanging on to life by a thread is going to be mandatory for 5 year olds? And you're a domestic terror threat if you go yell at your local school board. You know, like the Boston marathon bombers or Timothy McVeigh. And all this is after being told that the concepts of male and female are actually super complicated and how dare you say otherwise. And actually if you're white you are *necessarily* racist. Under 20 unarmed black men killed by the police represents the greatest threat in America (to say nothing of the 6000/year young black men killed in gang violence). Protests where businesses and literal government buildings are burned to the ground *aren't* riots. The completely wrong predictions of 30 years of global warming models should be ignored because global warming is the single greatest threat to humanity (behind the 20 unarmed black men killed by the police), but don't you dare support nuclear power, which would eliminate carbon emissions entirely from power-generation. And Joe Biden definitely isn't going senile, even though you can look up any video of him from 10 or 20 years ago. And yeah, he definitely got hurt falling in the shower (which is the most old-man shit in the world to do) because he was... wrestling his dog. In the shower. And Hunter Biden, not an artist, but selling paintings for $500k, not a Ukrainian energy executive, but on the board of a Ukrainian energy company, not a Chinese lawyer or lobbyist, but representing a Chinese company, yeah that's all totally kosher but OMG did you see how corrupt the Trump family was? I mean Jared Kushner only negotiated the most meaningful peace agreements in the middle east in decades, and none of the Trump kids were caught doing drugs with (underage?) prostitutes or illegally possessing firearms and throwing them in dumpsters... Oh yeah and that totally fabricated golden showers blackmail tape (literally paid for by the Clinton campaign), and the FBI agents who knowingly lied to the FISA courts, and the House Intelligence Committee representatives and ex-Obama administration pundits who *swore* on TV that there was evidence proving Trump was a Russian catspaw? Oops. Don't forget the border. No crisis there at all. No way the incredible, record-setting surge in illegal crossings had anything to do with the Biden Administration immediately undoing the Trump-era policies and openly advocating for a path to citizenship for any and all illegals. Don't worry about that because there's no inflation! In fact, government deficit spending will actually help *reduce* inflation. What's another 5 trillion? You want to know why your seemingly intelligent conservative friends are losing their minds? Look around.
  4. It's not red-pilled. He just took the effort to look at the data (which has pointed towards his conclusions for over a year now) rather than trust the cherry-picked misrepresentations pushed by a large swath of the media and political class. Neg usually has insightful posts. I'm more interested in his analysis as to *why* his conclusions based on easily-accessed data aren't shared by the politicians and authority figures pushing for mandates. I'm also wondering how many liberal-minded people will make the connection between misrepresentation of COVID-19 statistics and the misrepresentation of "racial equity" statistics.
  5. Kinda fun finding out how many people are simply concerned with the authority to control others in a society, isn't it? Compliance is the only discernable goal.
  6. Agreed with the first part. I'm vaccinated and against mandates, so obviously I agree that the truth is in the middle. I'm sympathetic to the individuals who fell for the right wing conspiracy theories regarding COVID vaccines for the same reason I was sympathetic to the individuals who fell for the left wing conspiracy theories regarding policing and minorities in the US. A simple reality is most americans, even many highly educated ones, do not have the skills required to sift through data that is intentionally misrepresented to them by seemingly authoritative sources. Well I can understand your position regarding other people being vaccinated, and I certainly agree that the vaccines have some effect on transmission, I believe the threshold for a mandate is very high, and the vaccines do not meet that. Pre-delta you could at least make a solid case, but the rates of transmission amongst the vaccinated in the Delta environment are no longer reduced enough to justify a mandate in my opinion. All it's going to do is slow down the inevitable, and looking at the numbers, not by much. Unfortunately a lot of the studies that show efficacy against Delta transmission are measuring a few months after vaccination, subsequently the efficacy against transmission drops quite dramatically. The vaccines do, however, continue to stave off severe hospitalization or death, but that brings us right back to "if you're worried, get the vaccine." Much like the flu, and unlike measles, there isn't going to be herd immunity granted by widespread vaccination to the Covid-19. It's a bummer, but there are many bummers in life. A small nitpic, but being on a plane for 9 hours is one of the safest places you can be. I don't believe there are many documented cases of spread from air traffic. Bleed air and whatnot. A big nitpic, unless your kid has a very severe underlying condition that you just left out of your post, being worried about him or her getting covid would only make sense if you already kept them in a protective bubble 24/7. It is simply a statistical reality that covid does not represent a threat to children. Is one of the most heavily supported conclusions, bar none. And it is example number one of the fear mongering you reference to the beginning of your post. In fact, it's a fairly easy way to immediately suss out whether someone talking about the virus is intentionally full of shit or not. Anyone advocating for the mandatory vaccination of children, using the safety of children as justification, either has no idea what they are talking about or know exactly what they are lying about. On a more interesting and philosophical level, we now have a great case study in *why* mandates are bad. It kind of goes to the entire argument supporting Liberty in general. Some of us, atheist or otherwise unconcerned with a higher power, support systems of Liberty because at the end of the day they just work better. A bunch of people on the left are going to spend the next few years figuring out what they did wrong and how to craft a better mandate, but instead they should be asking themselves why they thought mandates were the best way to get it done in the first place. Clearly they aren't, but I think to admit that only very specific, and very few policies can be successfully turned into a mandate would undermine their entire long range goal of widespread "social progress," which will most certainly require many, many mandates. Thanks for the honest reply.
  7. Crenshaw was completely against the withdrawal, and I agree with him. I like Tulsi, but I get the feeling she's whatever she needs to be to stay relevant. I'd much rather see Nikki Haley with Crenshaw as VP. As a bonus, Haley is a Trump favorite and might just be able to keep him from running again, instead taking the role of "queen maker."
  8. The point is that it completely disrupts the very obvious narrative being pushed that "covid can get anyone." It's bullshit. A couple kids and a couple healthy people under the age of 40 die and their deaths are used as some sort of representation of why everybody is supposed to be terrified of this disease. That's the lie. Some people, maybe you, simply can't accept the fact that others just don't care about covid. There's a vaccine, if you want to protect yourself, if you're fat, if you're old, if you have cancer, if there's any reason why you're at a higher risk, get it. So what the fuck else is there left to care about? What exactly is the point of these articles? So and so died, this 14 year old got sick, these 30-year-olds thought they were fine and then they got covid and died, what is the point? The point is to scare people into getting the vaccine. With misrepresented statistics. The point is to say *actually you're wrong, this disease is incredibly dangerous to you if you're young and healthy, and here's a bunch of examples of how risky this whole thing is*. It's using fear to motivate a desired action. Because the truth doesn't support the mandate. I don't know anybody that is happy that fat people or old people are dying from this disease, but the conversation isn't about covid, it's about compelled behavior, vaccine mandates. So it's relevant if they had comorbidities because their death is no longer an obvious justification for government compulsion.
  9. Shack. Just stop lying. The institutions haven't lost wide scale trust because people just suddenly stopped trusting institutions. On the contrary, people just started catching the institutions telling lies. It's a completely rational survival instinct to stop trusting someone you catch in an overt lie. And considering the response from the institutions when caught is to double down, it's entirely predictable.
  10. Kirby was smart, he put the mandate in place well before anybody had radicalized behind their position one way or the other. That left only 3% by the time the government stepped in and guaranteed compromise was dead. American is in a different boat. Something like 3, 000 are on vaccinated, and they've had months of telling everybody who will listen that they're not getting the vaccine. Pride is not so easily overcome, and 3,000 Pilots have a whole hell of a lot of more leverage than 300. I'm genuinely curious as to what's going to happen, because American Airlines couldn't afford even 500 Pilots quitting, and I've flown with multiple Pilots who claim to have already submitted their retirement paperwork. These guys are in their 50s. But our CEO played the same game last year during the furlough crisis. Hardball with the government up until the last minute, and even past it. Then throw his hands up and say he did everything he could but if the government doesn't change their position, all is lost. There's a 0% chance that this administration is going to tolerate this type of turmoil, especially one that will have an effect on the market, when their approval ratings are dipping below 44%. I'm vaccinated, so I don't really have skin in the game. But this mandate stuff is bullshit. The vaccine is no longer sufficient to stop the spread, and thus any justification for mandates, questionable as they were before, are now completely invalidated. And if you're stupid enough to think that it stops here, and won't involve a whole slew of medical decisions starting with mandating boosters, I've got a bridge to sell you.
  11. Ah yes, the only things I find funny are funny argument. A true man of the times.
  12. Just stop fucking with college loans entirely. Like you said, supply and demand. If the government keeps destroying one side of the equation, we can't expect the other side to balance. If the world needs more xxxxx degrees, the market will incentivize those degrees. The problems with advanced education are entries caused by government intervention. The trend line is not good. 60% of college kids today are women. 60% of the workforce is not women. Another imbalance. If you want to make social change you have to get to the chosen minority as toddlers. If they fall behind as small kids then no amount of college loans, affirmative action, or fake degrees will make up for it. But fixing those problems would completely unravel the current social justice narrative that many people are making millions from, so don't expect it anytime soon.
  13. Another fallacy in this line of reasoning is that all bottoms are equal. If you lack the timing and luck that are allegedly required to succeed in america, you still end up in a vastly better position than if you lack the timing or luck required in another country. And if you take one step up from the absolute bottom, you see an even bigger disparity. The second from the bottom quintile in America lead dramatically wealthier and more opportunistic lives than the second to the bottom quintile in European countries. And whereas our citizens in that quintile pay no taxes effectively, European lower and middle class workers pay quite a bit of taxes. So while this system isn't perfect when compared to a non-existent perfect system, it is thoroughly more beneficial to those at the bottom than other systems that do exist. There are only two valid comparisons. That which exists in other countries today, and that which existed in our country in the past. By both metrics, our citizens come out way ahead. Add in the opportunities for upward mobility, and the competition isn't even close. I do agree with the problems regarding college debt, housing prices, and wage stagnation. But the boom times of the 1950s did not come remotely close to the level of regulation and interference we have today. College debt can be directly traced to government backing student loans. That seemingly well-intentioned policy completely decimated a lot of millennial and gen z lives with astronomical debt as teenagers. And we effectively derailed the progress black Americans were making with a series of well-intentioned but ultimately catastrophic programs such as affirmative action. Decades of progress making up for a true evil, completely lost. And now no one on either side has a solution for the glaring racial problem that everyone sees but is uncomfortable verbalizing. The disconnect is that liberals generally see conservative resistance as some sort of lack of compassion. Incorrect. It's generally a realization that second and third order effects of seemingly innocuous (to liberals) government action can have quite devastating effects.
  14. Agreed, except this was a completely foreseeable and realistic outcome. So when policy is developed to toss a hand grenade into the economy and the societal norms at large, a realistic possibility that a mutation will completely negate the monumental fist-fucking the policy exerts on society should be cause to perhaps view said-policy with skepticism. The vaccine is still life-saving, but saving your own life isn't (and shouldn't be) compulsory. The justifications for until-now unthinkable government intervention have been completely invalidated by Delta, but the damage done by furthering the political team sports will not be so easily erased. Let's see how long it takes the party of "follow the science" to acknowledge these studies and adapt their policies. I'm not holding my breath.
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