Covid – What Do We Know?
By Paul Agle
As Covid-19 continues to threaten us with unforeseen effects and after-effects, it is difficult, even for those with time-tested memory banks, to reach conclusions about the virus that will stand the test of time. Here are just a few of the facts:
- We aren't going to eliminate or contain Covid, a virus with an estimated spread factor of 6. We can't even stop the flu with a spread factor of 1.3. The spread factor has to be greater than 1 for a virus to even be contagious.
- To date, there have been 73,973 Covid cases and 9 deaths in the 0-19 cohort (school kids) in Maryland. The number of 0-19 Covid deaths in Maryland in 2020 was about the same as the number of 0-19 suicides in MoCo in 2020. For comparison, there have been 15,956 cases in the 80+ group and 4,235 deaths.
- Numerous studies, most of which tested 2019 blood samples, report that 20%-50% of the population has some level of preexisting immunity to Covid.
- Masks cause “mask mouth” (some combination of dry mouth, bad breath, tooth decay, and gum disease), maskne (mask-caused acne), Candida Overgrowth (a yeast infection in your mouth), etc. etc. Putting a warm moist cloth in front of your face creates a breeding ground for bacteria and is a bad idea unless absolutely necessary.
- More fun with masks: a JAMA study showed that children wearing masks average 13,120 to 13,910 ppm of carbon dioxide in their inhaled air. This is over six times the OSHA level. The dead space in the mask accumulates CO2. For perspective, global warmers claim a 100 PPM increase in CO2 (to 500 PPM) is dangerous.
- A randomized study of cloth masks showed that they only filtered about 3% of viral particles.
- Santa Clara and Alameda County refined their approach to classifying Covid deaths and dropped the Covid death rate by 25% by removing people who tested positive but were asymptomatic. Not counting suicides and accident victims who tested positive for Covid as Covid deaths is probably a good idea, but makes the number of non-Covid excess deaths that much higher.
- China effectively dealt with the virus by nailing sick people in their homes and retrieving the bodies a week or two later.
- Wearing masks and isolation has created an “immunity debt.” Other respiratory viruses will come back to haunt us.
- The U.S. has done studies to prove that the benefits of the vaccine outweigh the risks of myocarditis (a heart condition). What is scary is they actually had to check.
- Having low Vitamin D and Zinc levels increases your risk from Covid over 100% (as does being obese).
- Studies show that children under 10 are unlikely to spread the virus, while children 10-19 are more likely to acquire it at school than by staying home. Given that common respiratory illnesses have typically killed more children annually than Covid 19, this is a weak rationale for masks or closing schools.
The vaccines for Covid are the most deadly vaccines that the U.S. has ever released to the general public, and the risk of permanent disability is 3 times the death rate. The Covid vaccines are several times as deadly as all previous vaccines combined. The heart and nervous (mostly Guillain-Barré Syndrome) system problems that can be caused by the vaccines are pretty serious. Furthermore, there is no benefit to vaccinating healthy people who have had the virus (50% or more of the population).
Should you get the vaccine... Qualified yes. If you are over 65 or have co-morbidities, and haven't gotten Covid, swing away. If you have gotten Covid, no. If you are young and healthy, it is a personal decision. There is risk from the vaccine (particularly of permanent disability) and there is risk from Covid. The risk from Covid seems greater, but you might be naturally immune. If in doubt, flip a coin. Giving the vaccine to kids (particularly under 10) serves no useful purpose.
Quarantining healthy people kills more people than it saves. Taking China and the WHO's (and the CDC's) advice on a universal quarantine was unbelievably stupid. There isn't any evidence that it saved people and lockdowns killed a large number of the under 60 crowd by driving them crazy and forcing them to live in fear and isolation (excess deaths were up to 50% of the Covid death rate for that group).
Keeping people indoors caused more Covid deaths by lowering Vitamin D levels. Closing outdoor spaces was based on deluded thinking (no one has demonstrated that Covid can be spread effectively outdoors). If the CDC had concentrated on rapid rollout of mitigation/prevention measures (Vitamin D, Zinc, Ivermectin, etc.) we could have easily cut the death rate in half. The vaccine or bust strategy was unwise. Furthermore, Sweden, which never locked down, currently has about one quarter of the daily case rate of the U.S. (per population) and isn’t reporting any deaths. That is where the US could have been without a lockdown. The CDC made so many decisions based on “don't help Trump” that it should be investigated to determine how many people they killed.
Any mask law that allows cloth masks is pure virtue signaling. Children should not be forced to wear masks, period. With the advent of vaccines, there is no reason for a mask law. There are four groups of people: Those who have had Covid, fearful people who have been vaccinated, people who are naturally immune, and people who don't care. There is no one to protect anymore.
We need to remove the power of the government to order the quarantine of healthy people.
God bless everyone and God bless America.
Paul Agle is a farmer (Michigan), digital hardware engineer, software engineer, 6 time marathoner, 40 year Gaithersburg Resident, 30 year Republican volunteer, a close observer of the human condition and a member of the Montgomery County Republican Central Committee.
Do You Know What's Your Share of the Debt?
After Vacations, When its Cooler -- Save the Date!
LD15 Republicans Annual Family Picnic
Sunday, September 12th at Black Rock Regional Park
Is Zoning a Promise?
By Patricia Fenati
Over a century ago, growth of communities was helter-skelter. There was no assurance when building a home in a quiet place that the following year a factory would not be built beside your home, thus making the property almost worthless. But America came up with a solution to this problem starting in Los Angeles in 1908. The solution is called zoning. Zoning establishes guidelines which guide urban growth and development.
Webster’s dictionary defines zoning as: municipal or county regulation of land use effected through the creation and enforcement of zones under local law https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/zoning?src=search-dict-hed
The according to Wikipedia, the definition of zoning is:
Zoning is a method of planning where land is divided into areas called zones, each of which regulates any new development in that zone. Zones are designated for specific use (e.g. commercial, industrial, residential, single family, multi-family, etc.) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zoning
Both definitions express that a promise is made by a municipality (or laws governing the area) of how land will be used. Thus, a buyer who purchases a piece of property is guaranteed that new neighboring properties will follow the same zoning regulations.
Because the use of land can change over time, there is a way of changing zoning regulations for a parcel of land. It is called re-zoning. This process involves petitioning for a re-zoning hearing, advertise the hearing by signs and other notifications in a public way to notify those in the area that a property is under consideration for re-zoning. There then are public hearings in which the owners of neighboring properties can have their voices heard. If there is good reason and there is no large rejection, the re-zoning can be allowed.
Montgomery County Maryland is considering turning zoning on its head.
In one of the most beautiful counties in the nation, zoning is no longer going to be considered. (Zoning, Shmoning!) This change will move us back to the 1800’s in assurances for the property where we live. In a move that can completely devalue all property in any community, the county government is considering a plan called Thrive Montgomery 2050. Under this plan any single home in the county can be replaced with duplexes, triplexes and quadplexes. This can be done without notification, without hearings without any input from neighboring properties whatsoever. The plan is to eliminate single family housing in the county. This will turn communities upside down.
This plan also tells us that a bunch of hypocrites make up our County Council!
We are constantly lectured about global warming. The County Council requires recycling, they charge for plastic bags. When removing trees on our own property if more than 5,000 square feet of canopy or soil is disturbed, we have to have a permit to remove the tree. We are saving the planet!
Many of the neighborhoods in Montgomery County have large green spaces. We are told that more green space is needed to save the planet … the same planet where our county council is planning to turn green spaces into buildings and parking lots. This plan will destroy those green spaces, including large CO2 eating trees. Black macadam which generates heat and cooks the air above it will be substituted for grass where parking is needed for these new dwelling units.
I assume that now the planet can be saved elsewhere just not in our county.
According to the Montgomery County Planning Board, we're running out of space to provide housing for the 200,000 people that the Planning Board has projected will be moving here over the next 30 years. This plan to eradicate single family homes should not be called Thrive Montgomery 2050. It should be called Projects Montgomery 2050. As the character of more and more neighborhoods dramatically change, we will probably attract more than 200,000 people who need cheap housing. We will have to build larger soviet style apartment buildings. Wait! … We already did that in this country. We called the buildings Projects. How did that work for this country, Montgomery Council?
Montgomery Council, you are breaking a promise to the people of this county.
Breaking this promise will destroy neighborhoods, destroy the value of homes, and destroy peoples dreams, dreams which often take the better part of a lifetime to achieve.
What are your plans for the infrastructure in this county to accommodate 200.000 more commuters? Our roads are already overwhelmed by stop and go traffic and you are fighting improvement of our roads. By the way you clueless environmentalists … you know that if a car is standing for an extra half hour in a traffic jam it is spewing CO2 into the atmosphere all that time.
The voters of this county need to act! A group has been formed called Empowering People in Communities of MoCo (EPIC of MoCo). Please Like and follow EPIC of MoCo on FB and Twitter. Let’s fight this plan. Together we can make a difference.
Patricia Fenati is a Member of the Montgomery County Republican Central Committee and Chair of its District 14 Committee.
Homeowners Are Advised to Have Their Older Decks Inspected
With the recent deck collapses in various parts of the Washington region, Montgomery County’s Department of Permitting Services (DPS) is advising owners of properties with decks older than 20 years to have a licensed third-party inspection of those decks. DPS advises that having older decks inspected every five years is a good safety measure that could help avoid disaster.
The old adage goes that there are two constants in life; death and taxes. But if you live in the DC metropolitan area, there is a third: traffic.
Their have been countless studies, hundreds of news reports and millions of anecdotal stories to tell us why we are ranked dead last for traffic in the country. Think about that, we are worse than Los Angeles, worse than New York, worse than Chicago. All with populations multiple times that of our region.
Some in our region are aware of the problem and are looking to fix this, namely officials in Virginia. However, while some are looking to fix the problem, others, like our leaders in Montgomery County and Annapolis are looking to do nothing. They are interested in subjecting us to generations of a traffic nightmare.
Their apathy towards a solution is two-fold; they have contempt for the average citizen and they are supported by an extremely vocal minority.
However, their apathy towards a solution has now reached critical mass. It is now time for us as frustrated citizens to voice our concern and let the Montgomery County leadership in Rockville and Annapolis know that we have had enough.
The Montgomery County leadership a very vocal group of naysayers. But they are in the vast minority. How many of them are their? Five thousand? Ten Thousand? Fifteen thousand? Are we really going to allow fifteen thousand noisemakers hold hostage the other six-million residents of the greater DC area? These noisemakers are not opposed to any particular solution, they are opposed to ALL solutions. They are more interested in making noise than finding any solutions, and the Montgomery County leaders in Rockville and Annapolis are all too happy to listen to them.
I have written many opinion pieces, I have testified before council and committee hearings, I have written emails and spoken face-to-face. But I am just one person, and my message has fallen on deaf and indifferent ears. To be heard, we need the collective voice of all concerned traffic dwellers. The leaders of Montgomery County in Rockville and Annapolis need to hear from more than just me, they need to hear from all of us. We need to be louder than the noisemakers.
The noisemakers have a loud voice and they are effective. But we can be even louder and even more effective. We must write, we must testify, we must engage and we must remind our neighbors and friends to do the same.
In a region that shares few bipartisan concerns, it is surprising that the issue of traffic has not garnered more outrage. We all know it’s there and we all know it’s a problem. But why are we not so outraged as to take action? The prospect of defeat may keep us from engaging, but this is a self-fulfilling prophecy. We are only defeated because we refuse to engage. It is time we say no more to this self-fulfilling prophecy. It is time we act. It is time we author and it is time we vote for action.
Imagine yourself on I-270 in 2035. Will you be traveling at 65 mph with the flow of traffic getting to your destination on time? Or will you sit in bumper to bumper traffic asking yourself “why didn’t I speak up when I could have?”
The author, Mr. Jason Neuringer is a resident of Montgomery County.
Our Traffic Relief Plan includes finally building a new American Legion Bridge across the Potomac River and relieving traffic congestion on I-270 and I-495.
Unfortunately, Montgomery County politicians Marc Elrich, Marc Korman, and Tom Hucker are doing everything they can to sabotage all of our progress. They're catering to a tiny minority of pro-traffic activists at the expense of the overwhelming majority of residents who are sick of the soul-crushing traffic and who support our plan.
But these far-left and short-sighted politicians are threatening to derail not just the bridge and the project itself. There is much more at stake than just these projects. If their pro-traffic plan succeeds, nearly every single transportation project in the National Capital Region will be killed.
After five decades of delays and kicking the can down the road, this is the closest we've ever been to fixing Maryland's traffic crisis. We need your help to stop these pro-traffic politicians and get these critical projects done for Marylanders.
MCGOP is on the move and growing!!!
MCGOP is looking for experienced computer and technology savvy Republicans to help support our growth and outreach to the voters in Montgomery County. The successful candidate will be a professional team player with a "can do" attitude and have exceptional English reading, writing and grammar skills, internet and computer skills, organizational abilities, availability of 6 hours per week and be reliable. Responsibilities include design, writing, video production, posting and tweeting in support of MCGOP initiatives. This is the non-compensated volunteer opportunity to get in on the growth of the party and the start of bringing common sense back to Montgomery County. Please contact: [email protected]
Big Tech: A conservative investor’s dilemma
Big Tech’s recent strong stock performance and large size creates a conundrum for politically-conservative investors who want to align their core beliefs with their investments. Many conservative investors begrudgingly own these left-leaning companies due to not wanting to sacrifice performance.
The reference to Big Tech companies includes the likes of Amazon, Google, Facebook, Twitter, and Apple, due to their recent collective efforts to censor free speech in America. Strictly speaking, they are all not tech companies, but in the eyes of the public, they are part of the Big Tech monopoly.
Big Tech has censored conservatives on multiple platforms in recent years. Parler, a thriving social media alternative to Twitter, was deplatformed by Amazon Web Services, Apple and Google for allegedly inciting violence at the U.S. Capitol. Facebook, not to be outdone by its Big Tech allies, banned a Virginia Second Amendment advocacy group, the Virginia Citizens Defense League, from their platform without much explanation. Twitter famously banned President Donald Trump from its platform, after suspending his account indefinitely. The Silicon Valley-based corporation said that their “close review” of the president’s account led to the permanent ban because of the “risk of further incitement of violence.” Twitter never commented about why it never banned the accounts of dictatorial regimes, such as Iran’s Ayatollah Khamenei, China’s Xi Jinping, or Russia’s Vladimir Putin.
Is now the time to boycott ownership of Big Tech?
The First Amendment, which protects our freedom of speech and religion, is the bedrock issue that strongly unites all conservatives. These Big Tech companies are actively undermining our freedom of speech and are emboldened by the recently elected Democratic majorities. It is not only the liberal media, liberal CEOs, and campaign contributions that we have grown weary of, but Big Tech companies now have the power to suppress conservative voices, destroy companies, and deny conservatives access to the technological infrastructure that they monopolize. This includes access to e-commerce, cloud technology, credit card processing payments, and more. Big Tech has clearly demonstrated an unabashed and unrestrained willingness to use their power to economically influence those they disagree with. If these companies continue to run roughshod over the conservative beliefs of their shareholders, the silent majority will become the silenced majority in short order.
Results from a recent Gallup poll conducted earlier this year show positive views of Big Tech have fallen 12 percent since late 2019, and the majority of poll respondents want more government regulation of technology companies. Given the customer centric business models and rapid growth necessary to justify recent valuations, how can this level of dissatisfaction not affect the bottom line? Big Tech executives fail to realize that the implementation of liberal-leaning policies may result in lost revenue, a growing opportunity for potential new competitors, and vulnerability to government anti-trust actions.
Certainly, the general market environment should be considered and there are warning signs that Big Tech’s run cannot last forever
If you have been begrudgingly or unknowingly holding onto Big Tech stocks, this confluence of recent events highlights the need for a shift towards greater conservative advocacy. It starts with principle-focused investment and holding Big Tech and left-wing “woke” corporations accountable to their shareholders.
Now is the time for conservatives to take action and hold Big Tech and left-wing corporations accountable and reject “woke capitalism.”
Donald Irvine is the Director of Political Research at Ridgeline Research, the investment adviser to the American Conservative Values ETF (ACVF) and a Member and former Treasurer of the Montgomery County Republican Central Committee.