I have it on very, very good authority that the IB is intending to call the legislature into session in the near future and try to get it to agree on a second shutdown for a supposedly limited period. What is most interesting to me is why he doesn’t just order it. I believe it is because he is concerned that his own party may have defectors the next time he tries to extend his emergency powers. If people aren’t starting to question why all these measures that he put in place–mask mandates, the LTC battle plan and business limitations and school limitations and on and on, micromanaging personal, social, economic and educational lives; haven’t had any impact, than we are all way denser than I would have thought possible. They aren’t making any difference, period.
But at the briefing today, instead of some acknowledgment that their plans and measures aren’t working, what we got was an astonishing exercise in warped logic, or rather, should I say non-logic. The Commissioner literally said, because we see this rise in cases, it must mean Minnesotans aren’t complying with the orders and engaging in the recommended mitigation measures. I see zero evidence of that and aside from the bizarre logical fallacy, the State offered no proof of it. What I do know and can see very plainly is that Minnesotans are highly compliant, way too unquestioningly compliant in my opinion. We have almost the highest mask wearing rate in the country. (By the way, I am going to use better logic than the Commissioner to say that the mask mandate has caused a more than 300% rise in cases. We need to discourage mask-wearing immediately to get cases back to where they were before the mandate.) Here is the real logic, which is obvious to anyone who isn’t interested in ignoring the obvious, cases are rising because the mitigation of spread measures aren’t effective, not because people don’t comply with them.
The whole briefing was an exercise in blaming, and we were admonished to take the rise in cases seriously and make behavior changes. We made changes in our behavior, they aren’t making any difference.
We got a review of the five point LTC battle plan and some select statistics to show that is working. I had forgotten what a lot of bureaucratic gibberish was in that plan. It isn’t working. Cases and deaths are rising, and if we hadn’t already so exhausted the pool of vulnerable LTC residents, they would likely be even higher. But here too, it isn’t the state’s fault for having an inadequate plan, it is staff and the community’s fault for allowing spread and bringing it into the facilities. Be a lot smarter messaging to just admit that there are substantial limits to the ability to control this virus.
Lots of questions from the media aimed at getting quotes to feed the hospitalization hysteria and the need for more dial-back. The media, as usual, is a big part of the problem, failing to ask challenging questions about blaming Minnesotans for non-existent non-compliance with mitigation of spread measures, and more than willing to amplify the frenzied panic over virus spread.
We supposedly had over 5000 new cases today on about the highest testing volume ever. But there is something weird going on with the spread of those cases to date of actual specimen collection. The new cases got very widely dispersed over a lot of past days. The state did not mention a testing dump, but I have to believe that a good part of these cases were delayed reporting of results.
One final note, the CDC is trying desperately to crank out non-science research to support the obviously futile mitigation of spread measures. The latest study, which you can find on their website if you really like junk non-science, supposedly shows how well all the mitigation measures worked in Delaware. With the usual cherry-picking approach, they stopped looking in late June at cases and deaths. Might want to extend that study to the current time, looks like its baaaack. Just absolute garbage to pick a time when cases and deaths were already on the decline and pretend that those measures had anything to do with it and then ignore the return.