Over two years after the World Health Organization declared Covid-19 a global pandemic, it seems the end is quickly approaching. Unfortunately, the end of the pandemic appears to be the start of an endemic. Even Dr. Anthony Fauci has admitted, “we’ve only eradicated one infectious disease in man, and that’s smallpox. That’s not going to happen with this virus.”
Nearly two years after Covid-19 first reached the US, Dr. Anthony Fauci indicated what many medical professionals have long known, and policymakers have desperately tried to avoid: Covid-19 is likely endemic.
The UN and NATO showed that their leaders are more preoccupied with grandstanding and residual Cold War rivalries than seeing the Russo-Ukrainian conflict come to a close. The international community’s inability to negotiate with Putin highlights the eroding international order inherited from WWII. The United Nations was initially created to promote security and peace, and NATO was created to provide military security against the Soviet Union. But reliance on these international bodies does not bode well, nor are they especially accountable, even though their budgets come largely from US tax-payer money.
In Mere Christianity, C.S. Lewis wrote:
“We all want progress. But progress means getting nearer to the place where you want to be. And if you have taken a wrong turning, then to go forward does not get you any nearer. If you are on the wrong road, progress means doing an about-turn and walking back to the right road; and in that case, the man who turns back soonest is the most progressive.”
The kinds of theories politicians, news organizations, and others are coming up with to explain why prices are going up are mind-blowing. Some are blaming it on Russia, others on price gouging by corporate America (or corporate Europe or corporate whatever), some on the supply disruptions that stemmed from the pandemic, etc. The most imaginative conspiracy theorists think Gazprom, the Russian gas company that supplies the European market, deliberately depleted European storages so as to soften up those countries’ politicians ahead of the invasion of Ukraine—the idea being that they would think twice before getting involved on the side of the Ukrainians. Gazprom, therefore, sparked off the energy crisis that was then accelerated by rising Chinese demand and pushed other prices up. Although some of these factors and others have played a part, they are by no means the primary cause of the price inflation we are seeing.
Clifford Thies provides his top-ten list of Cold War songs, and it is a treat. But it is more than delightful. It’s a knockout.
How did today’s high inflation in the U.S. get started?
There is a debate among economists about the causes of the high inflation that defines Joe Biden’s presidency. On one side are President Biden’s economists, who claim their policies are not responsible. On the other side are economists whose arguments are supported by a growing mountain of evidence that says otherwise.
In the first order of its kind, a federal district court has held that a warrant used to identify all devices in the area of a bank robbery, including the defendant’s, “plainly violates the rights enshrined in [the Fourth] Amendment.” The court questioned whether similar warrants could ever be constitutional.
When the federal government wants to spend money in a hurry, it does it badly. Very, very badly.
That’s the top lesson to take away from 2020’s Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance Program (PUA). Together, these programs are described as “the biggest fraud in a generation.” Here is NBC News‘ coverage of the ongoing crime story: