Saturday, August 7, 2021

The Vax Of Life, Con't

In six weeks, we've gone from 11,000 COVID-19 cases per day to 110,000, and there appears to be no end in sight as to how bad things will get for the unvaccinated and unmasked.

The U.S. is now averaging 100,000 new COVID-19 infections a day, returning to a milestone last seen during the winter surge in another bleak reminder of how quickly the delta variant has spread through the country.

Health officials fear that cases, hospitalizations and deaths will continue to soar if more Americans don’t embrace the COVID-19 vaccine. Nationwide, 50% of residents are fully vaccinated and more than 70% of adults have received at least one dose.

“Our models show that if we don’t (vaccinate people), we could be up to several hundred thousand cases a day, similar to our surge in early January,” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention director Rochelle Walensky said on CNN this week.

It took the U.S. about nine months to cross the 100,000 average case number in November before peaking at about 250,000 in early January. Cases bottomed out in June, averaging about 11,000 per day, but six weeks later the number is 107,143.

Hospitalizations and deaths are also increasing rapidly, though all are still below peaks seen early this year before vaccines became widely available. More than 44,000 Americans are currently hospitalized with COVID-19, according to the CDC, up 30% in a week and nearly four times the number who were hospitalized in June. More than 120,000 were hospitalized in January.

The seven-day average for deaths also increased, according to Johns Hopkins University. It rose from about 270 deaths per day two weeks ago to nearly 500 a day as of Friday. Deaths peaked at 3,500 per day in January. Deaths usually lag behind hospitalizations as the disease normally takes a few weeks to kill.

The situation is particularly dire in the South, which has some of the lowest vaccination rates in the U.S. and has seen smaller hospitals overrun with patients. 
Alabama and Mississippi have the lowest vaccination rates in the country: less than 35% of residents are fully inoculated, according to the Mayo Clinic. Georgia, Tennessee and the Carolinas are all in the lowest 15 states.

Florida makes up more than 20% of the nation’s new cases and hospitalizations, triple its share of the population. Many rural counties have vaccination rates below 40%, with the state at 49%.
So once again we're headed for a parabolic rise in cases, hospitalizations, and deaths. The difference now is vaccination, and among those who still simply choose to refuse, the results are going to be heartbreaking.

Our Little Right Wing White Supremacist Domestic Terrorism Problem, Con't

As WaPo's Greg Sargent explains, having Tucker Carlson personally fawn over white supremacist authoritarian Hungarian President Viktor Orban, saying Orban and Hungary are more free than America because Orban has "bravely resisted" diversity, no longer leaves any doubt as to whether or not Carlson's persona on television is an act.
The first segment of Tucker Carlson’s long-anticipated Fox News interview with Viktor Orban has now aired, and it did not disappoint: It provides a deeply unsettling glimpse into the true nature of the authoritarian nationalist future that Carlson and his fellow travelers envision for our country.

An ugly tension sits at the core of Carlson’s conversation with the Hungarian leader. Carlson fawns over the “free” nature of Hungarian society — contrasting it favorably with the supposed repression of widespread anti-liberal yearnings in American society — while saying little to nothing about the autocratic nature of Orbanism.

In this lurks a sort of dream combination: ethno-nationalism secured via autocracy.

The interview’s central feature is Carlson gushing over Orban’s virulently anti-immigrant policies and demagoguery. Orban describes these as urgent to defending national identity, defined as his country’s “population” and “culture” and “language” and “tradition” and “land,” a right of defense dictated by “God” and “nature.”

Orban also castigates liberal internationalist Western leaders for wanting to intermingle “Muslim” and “Christian” communities, describing the latter as “original inhabitants.” Orban declares that his country decided “not to take that risk.”

Throughout, Carlson treats this vision of national identity as fundamental to Hungary’s success. He even suggests that in Hungary, people are freer than in the United States.

Here, Carlson says, you’ll be silenced by Silicon Valley or hounded from your job if you dare criticize the “orthodoxy” of liberal internationalism and social liberalism — that is, if you yearn for association with a national identity that is culturally insulated and unsullied by socially liberal threats (like “transgender athletes”) to traditional conservative values.

“Who’s freer?” Carlson asks. “If you’re an American, the answer is painful to admit.”

Yet, as Ishaan Tharoor notes, Carlson often has little to say about the autocratic nature of Orban’s rule. Indeed, in Thursday’s broadcast, he blithely dismisses international observers criticizing it as tools of U.S. and liberal internationalist hegemony.

This tension — declaring America a less free society based on paranoid notions of sinister forces repressing anti-liberal-internationalist yearnings, while embracing the autocratic nature of Orbanism — is central to grasping the Carlsonist right’s true dream future.

Though Carlson won’t say it this way, autocratic rule is preferable to democracy because the former, he imagines, is the only route to the closed, ethno-nationalist, culturally reactionary society he wants for the United States. What Carlson and his ilk cannot accept, and are fighting their rearguard action against, is that open, liberal internationalist societies are and can be legitimately democratic creations.

“If you care about Western civilization and democracy and families,” Carlson declared this week from Hungary, “you should know what is happening here right now.” He decried the “ferocious assault” on these things by globalist leaders, which Orban has heroically rebuffed.

As Jonathan Chait says, what’s striking is Carlson’s assertion that the defense of democracy requires embracing illiberalism and autocracy. This is an open declaration of an actual vision of what American self-rule should look like.
Folks, this is textbook fascism from 100 years ago, brought up to date for the 21st digital century. Carlson isn't playing footsie here with the fascists, he's inviting them on his show, going to their countries, giving them free airtime to be watched by millions of Americans. 

This is Tucker Carlson showing us who he is: a white supremacist who wants to see America controlled by white supremacists, with no recourse for those who resist. This is a major cable news personality, openly professing deep respect for, respect he says his viewers should have, of a bloody, authoritarian racist.

This kind of open fascism support is the kind of thing VDARE and Stormfront and Project Evropa could only dream of even a few years ago.

Now it's commonplace, on America's most watched cable news show. We aren't just rocketing toward open violence here in America, we're already making reservations in the graveyard for the results.
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