RUSH: I have a piece here by Heather Mac Donald. She’s a brilliant author. She’s an expert on American policing and law enforcement, has written several books about it. She has a piece today — actually, it was yesterday, but I guess posted last night — at the American Greatness website: “The Deadly Costs of Extended Shutdown Orders.”
The subheadline is gonna dovetail with what so many of you who have called today have said. “The Deadly Costs of Extended Shutdown Orders.” The subhead is: “The focus on saving ‘just one life’ from the coronavirus to the exclusion of all other considerations likely will prove a catastrophic failure of policymaking. The devastation to individuals’ ability to flourish or even survive may soon become irreversible.”
You know, yesterday I was here telling you about how this is breaking my heart, that I look at these shut-down businesses and I see your faces. I said, “To me, it’s personal. I have almost a familial-like bond. I see so many faces of people’s lives that are being destroyed, livelihoods.” This sentence of hers captures my sentiment exactly: “The devastation to [people’s] ability to flourish or even survive may soon become irreversible.”
It’s like there’s this giant disconnect. We have 26 million people who’ve been thrown out of work in two months. We have destroyed two million more jobs — in two months — than we have created since 2008, since the 2008 Great Recession. And I have yet to see anybody in government express any similar reaction to mine about this.
And then I ask myself, “How many people commenting on this — how many people at the task force, how many people anywhere commenting — are still getting paid, and are therefore unaffected by this?” I’ll bet you it’s quite a lot of them are still being paid, or have enough of a cushion because they’ve earned a lot of money in their lives.
And even if they’re not being paid, they don’t face any financial pressure. Because, folks, there does seem to be this huge disconnect, and there doesn’t seem to be… When we talk about closing down to the middle of May or the end of May, the middle of June, there doesn’t seem to have been any calculation at all on the impact that will make on people.
Other than! Other than! (sniveling) “We are going to see to it that they don’t get sick,” as though not getting sick, as though not contracting this virus is the most important thing anybody could do. They have created that impression. They have successfully utilized fear. And, by the way, by “they,” I mean the media, people in politics. But it’s this disconnect that bothers me.
If I saw some concern… (interruption) No, I see it from the president. I know he gets it. But I get the impression that he’s kind of a lone wolf in this task force about this. There just doesn’t seem to be any concern, and not even an attempt to fake it! Some of these people announcing this, some of these governors now, “Oh, we’re gonna shut down until the middle of June.
“I don’t think we’re gonna be opening before the middle of June.” Really? You have nothing to say to the people whose lives are affected by this other than to really rip into them if they want to get back to work sooner, and try to portray them as the problem in the country? These protesters that want to go to back to work, who want to reopen their businesses?
Somehow, they have become the problem and we’ve gotta find out who’s responsible for these protesters, and guess who it is? It’s me and Fox News. Yep, we’re responsible for this. The people protesting and wanting their livelihoods back are not the problem. The people that want their businesses reopened, the people that want to go back to work in those businesses are not the problem — and when to represent a threat.
And yet that’s how they are being approached. “If you leave your house, if you go to the park, if you go to the beach — if you stand closer than six feet to somebody — you are the problem.” Sorry, folks, it doesn’t compute with me — and at some point, this is gonna boil over, because people are not going to take it. At some point, they’re not gonna just sit there and take this.
Now, the Democrats are trying to mitigate this by finding ways to pay a lot of people with government welfare-type payments more money than they were making working. The Democrats think they’ve got a golden opportunity here to rebuild the welfare state. Their belief is… They have so little faith in people anyway.
They believe the vast majority of people can be bought into permanent welfare if you just pay ’em enough. “Give ’em $50,000/$52,000 a year, and people will happily sit home and not work,” and so that’s what the Democrat Party political objective is. It’s to come up with enough money — anywhere, somehow, somewhere — to essentially pay people to happy stay home instead of working.
That’s how they seek to take advantage of this. I’m telling you that repulses me to no end. To, A, look at people that way, because, B, there are a lot of people who would rather do nothing and be paid for it than to go out, take risks, and work? And to have them taken advantage of and to have that group of people become the foundational building block of a political party?
Well, I have news for you. That happened long time ago. That is the foundational building block of the Democrat Party, the welfare state, the need for a permanent underclass. So the Democrat Party is perfectly fine with the status quo, because they think it’s only gonna hurt Republicans. It’s only gonna hurt Republican politicians.
It’s only gonna hurt President Trump, ’cause it’s gonna destroy the economy — and the people in power always get the blame when there’s an economic collapse or economic problem at all. I’m gonna tell you this. It’s not gonna be long before 26 million people are gonna get tired of hearing about how many ventilators we got.
They don’t need ventilators. They need income. No, it’s not that they’re not concerned about their fellow man. It’s that they don’t see the proportionate response. Let me share with you some of these questions that Heather Mac Donald has in her piece. Again, the headline: “The Deadly Costs of Extended Shutdown Orders,” and the subhead:
“The focus on saving ‘just one life’ from the coronavirus to the exclusion of [everything else] will prove a catastrophic failure of policymaking. The devastation to [people’s] ability to flourish or even survive may soon become irreversible.” Now, these questions that she poses here are questions not a single reporter will ever ask any governor.
No governor who is running a state lockdown and is promising to extend the state lockdown would ever answer these questions. No governor can. “How many coronavirus deaths do you expect to avert by” extending your shutdown extension? What are you trying to do here? How many people are trying to keep alive? “How many coronavirus deaths do you expect to avert by the shutdown extension?”
How many people do you expect to save by shutting down your state? “What will your state’s economy look like after another month of” this? The answer to that is (paraphrased): “We don’t care! We’re gonna get a bailout or we’re gonna file for bankruptcy. We don’t care.” Governor, how many workers would have lost their jobs in your state after your extensions? They won’t answer that question.
It’s not… It obviously isn’t a concern. That’s another thing. It’s not a concern to very many people that 26 million people have lost their jobs. The idea that we can’t do two things at once — that we cannot have an open, functioning economy — while fighting off a virus? When did this happen? We’ve never shut down like this before. Not for a pandemic. Not for a virus.
When did it come to pass that the United States can’t continue to go to work while fighting a virus? Governor, how many businesses in your state will have shut down for good after all of your shutdowns and extensions? Governor, “[h]ow many of your state’s young residents, seeking employment for the first time [in their lives], will be unable to find it?
“Instead, the announcements of the prolonged shutdown were representative of government decision-making during the coronavirus crisis: opaque, lacking in criteria for measuring success and failure,” and that’s a big point: They still won’t tell us what shutting down for another month is gonna achieve. Flattening the curve?
What does that achieve?
What’s the objective?
Why are we doing this?
Can you tell us when you’ll decide whether all of this has succeeded or not? They won’t. Governor, how are you attempting to measure the benefits of all this mitigation? You’ve got one particular health problem: Coronavirus. You’ve got other problems out there that also alter the way people live. So how are you measuring the benefits of social distancing and all that when there are many other things to deal with at the same time?
Governor Cuomo, “announced on April 15 that New York’s economy would now be shut down through May 15, instead of reopening on April 29…” It was April 29, but he said we need to add two weeks. “How did he arrive at May 15?” What became magic about May 15? I guarantee you that when we get to May 5, he’s gonna extend it another two weeks because Governor Cuomo thinks you can deal with two-week increments.
But if you were told he’s gonna extend the lockdown ’til August, that you would revolt. Cuomo said his “operating principle” (as “I’m governor and you’re not”) is to “do no harm,” (and “The illness is death.”)
RUSH: Grab audio sound bite number 24. We actually have the “I’m governor and you’re not” Andrew Cuomo quote. This is yesterday from the “I’m governor; you’re not” press conference. And the infobabe said, “Protesters outside right now honking their horns, they’re raising signs. These are regular people. They’re not getting a paycheck. Some of them are not getting their unemployment money. And they’re saying they don’t have time to wait for all this testing. They need to get back to work. They have to feed their families. Their savings are running out. They don’t have another week, Governor. They’re not getting answers. So their point is, this cure cannot be worse than the illness itself. What’s your response to that?”
CUOMO: The illness is death. What is worse than death? You said they said the cure is worse than the illness. The illness is death. How can the cure be worse than the illness if the illness is potential death?
RUSH: Ladies and gentlemen, do you realize how vapid that is? The illness is not death. There’s a 98% recovery rate. That number is out, it hasn’t been refuted. They don’t talk about it ’cause it would raise too many questions. The illness isn’t death. He said it twice. You said the cure is worse than the illness. Destroying the U.S. economy, Governor, is worse than the illness. “No, it’s not. The illness is death.” Well, it’s not.
“How can the cure be worse than the illness if the illness is -” and then he modifies it, a potential death? (interruption) No. I think he really believes this. This is what’s dangerous about it. Look. We’re dealing with a lot of people in this who are an order of fries short of a Happy Meal, folks. We’re dealing with people whose elevators never make it anywhere near the top floor. This is an example.
Here’s Dave in Sarasota, Florida. Save, glad you waited. You’re up next. Hello.
CALLER: Hey, Rush. First-time caller. Thanks for having me. You’re like a beacon of hope in an ever growing sea of despair that we feel right now.
RUSH: Thank you, sir. I hope that’s true, hope it’s true.
CALLER: Oh, gosh. I mean, I just love listening to you because I feel exactly like you do. I’m absolutely — you know, the country is going insane. I mean, you know, we have 30 to 60,000 flu deaths per year, and that’s with a vaccine, mind you. So why don’t we just close the country down like we’re currently doing now, we could probably cut that down to probably 1,500 a year, you know, and just live like we are right now with —
RUSH: I think we’ve got the answer to this. They say it’s not the flu. You can’t compare it to the flu. And we say, why not? Well, because the flu has vaccines. The American people have psychologically accepted 30 to 60,000 people. Well, what about the 800,000 hospitalizations with the flu? The American people have accepted it.
CALLER: Yeah, we’ve accepted all that, exactly, exactly.
RUSH: Well, but but but but but but but but.
CALLER: Yeah. I mean, the problem is in this country is growing, growing, growing. What we do is we cater to the one-fifth of 1% in this country. That’s what we do.
RUSH: Yeah, all of that, but but but but but but but. And now I’m out of time. The difference is we’re being treated like nobody survives this virus. If you get it, you’re dead. That’s what they have conveyed.