#NYTimes

More double standards in the mainstream media

Two things from last week which carry on with the theme of double standards within the mainstream media. These are so unbelievable that one could be confused to think it was satire coming from the Babylon Bee.

First MSNBC has hired Lisa Page, the lover of former FBI special agent Peter Strzok as a legal analyst. Recall their SMS conversations…no bias there…

FBI report: Anti-Trump texts 'cast a cloud' over email probe

Then The New York Times, despite an invitation, couldn’t publish an opinion piece by Senator Tom Cotton which suggested military support to support law enforcement was sensible because apparently, “Running this puts Black people, including Black @nytimes staff, in danger.”

Apparently, the words of a sitting US senator were deemed more offensive, divisive and dangerous than other NYT opinion pieces from Putin, Erdogan and the Taliban they were only too pleased to publish.

Sen. Cotton said in response, “My Op-Ed doesn’t meet the New York Times’ standards…It far exceeds their standards, which are normally full of left-wing, sophomoric drivel…in the face of the woke mob of woke kids that are in their newsroom.

Never mind the MorningConsult poll which revealed 58% of voters, including a 48% plurality of Democrats who said they’d support bringing in U.S. troops to supplement city police forces amid the protests.

All the news that is fit to print? If the left didn’t have double standards, they wouldn’t have any.

The best description of Twitter ever

yoelroth

If anyone wants to be informed, Twitter is one of the least likely platforms to find it. A fair and neutral playground marshalled by an unbiased hall monitor? Pfffft. We have included the best description of Twitter ever at the end. First some context.

Twitter updated its new rules on May 11th, 2020 vis-a-vis fact-checking and integrity. Of course, the platform, like YouTube and Facebook, decides what it deems appropriate. Who could forget when Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg testified before the Senate that Silicon Valley – where most of the tech world is headquartered – is “an extremely left-leaning place” and the evidence shows what side of politics gets fact-checked.

Twitter’s Head of Site Integrity, Yoel Roth (@yoyoel) is an avid anti-Trumper. Several days after the 2016 election he proudly tweeted, “I’m just saying, we fly over those states that voted for a racist tangerine for a reason.” We should sleep soundly at night that he also referred to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell as “a personality-free bag of farts.” Surely there is no risk of conservative bias with the integrity team at Twitter…sleep soundly.

Recall the time The NY Times hired Sarah Jeong who had tweeted “Cancel White People” among a laundry list of crude bile. Twitter did nothing despite being exposed and the newspaper endorsed her hire regardless (she has since been let go). Black conservative, Candace Owens exchanged the words “white” for “Jewish” and “Black” and was swiftly suspended.

F3570C69-B33D-4BA2-B56F-39A01CEA5DAD.jpeg

We wrote yesterday of our amusement that Twitter chose to use a brazenly anti-Trump media outlet like CNN, which has been regularly caught lying to fact-check the president. How amusing it was to hear White House Counsel Kellyanne Conway tell reporters how the media has no problems immediately retweeting items without a second’s thought to verifying.

Stephen Fry perhaps made the most accurate description of the social media site a few years back.

It’s no big deal – as it shouldn’t be. But yes, for anyone interested I have indeed deactivated my Twitter account…It’s quite simple really: the room had started to smell. Really quite bad.

Oh goodness, what fun Twitter was in the early days, a secret bathing-pool in a magical glade in an enchanted forest. It was glorious ‘to turn as swimmers into cleanness leaping.’ We frolicked and water-bombed and sometimes, in the moonlight, skinny-dipped. We chattered and laughed and put the world to rights and shared thoughts sacred, silly and profane. But now the pool is stagnant. It is frothy with scum, clogged with weeds and littered with broken glass, sharp rocks and slimy rubbish. If you don’t watch yourself, with every move you’ll end up being gashed, broken, bruised or contused. Even if you negotiate the sharp rocks you’ll soon feel that too many people have peed in the pool for you to want to swim there any more. The fun is over.

To leave that metaphor, let us grieve at what Twitter has become. A stalking ground for the sanctimoniously self-righteous who love to second-guess, to leap to conclusions and be offended – worse, to be offended on behalf of others they do not even know. It’s as nasty and unwholesome a characteristic as can be imagined. It doesn’t matter whether they think they’re defending women, men, transgender people, Muslims, humanists … the ghastliness is absolutely the same. It makes sensible people want to take an absolutely opposite point of view. I’ve heard people shriek their secularism in such a way as to make me want instantly to become an evangelical Christian…

Why are 28,000 US COVID19 deaths overreported?

We are curious as to why the US Government’s official Centre for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) records only 37,308 COVID19 deaths as of April 25th-end when Johns Hopkins University (JHU) reports over 65,000…that is a c.75% difference.

CDC explained its methodology as follows,

The provisional counts for coronavirus disease (COVID-19) deaths are based on a current flow of mortality data in the National Vital Statistics System (NVSS). National provisional counts include deaths occurring within the 50 states and the District of Columbia that have been received and coded as of the date specified. It is important to note that it can take several weeks for death records to be submitted to National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS), processed, coded, and tabulated.

In short, the data recorded is that of the official cause of death plugged into the national database.

JHU reports its data gathering as follows:

Johns Hopkins experts are aggregating data from multiple credible sources to track the spread of COVID-19…

…The tracking map’s data powers a number of external research and visualization efforts by prominent media organizations such as CNN, The New York Times, The Guardian, and the Associated Press [all media organizations with an axe to grind]. But its data is also used by smaller organizations, such as Blauer’s data team at the Centers for Civic Impact (CCI).”

Interestingly, the CCI, which was newly instituted at JHU, tried to explain the discrepancy.

Obtaining accurate and timely data about the spread of the virus has become an unexpected challenge in the United States. While the federal government has traditionally been the most authoritative source for national public health data, this has proved not to be the case with the coronavirus pandemic. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the nation’s official source for public health surveillance data, has not kept its site updated with information available through state and local health departments. 

Even if we accept that the official CDC data is delayed by up to two weeks, we are surprised the figures are out by a factor of 28,000 deaths or almost 75%. Will the data JHU gleans from state and local health departments differ to those eventually supplied to the NCHS for publishing by the CDC?

Perhaps we should be a little suspicious of CCI’s noble quest for data when it published a piece which expressed the following statement:

Aggregating information from dozens of sources is challenging and time-consuming, so volunteer projects have stepped in to fill the gap. One major backbone of this effort has been the COVID Tracking Project. Started by two journalists from The Atlantic and a data scientist from Related Sciences, the COVID Tracking Project scrapes data directly from state public health websites so that its numbers are constantly current.”

Volunteers? Journalists from The Atlantic, an unhinged left-leaning newspaper which makes Pravda look like the Volkischer Beobachter? Why is a reputable university relying on such sources? Who validates and peer reviews that data to ensure accuracy? Are the volunteers activists? All valid questions.

To be honest, as a data driven group, FNF Media does not see data collection across 50 states as that time consuming. Much of it is in CSV format making it easy to download.

At the conclusion of the pandemic the numbers should show little variance. We watch with interest to see the final audit. Perhaps we can start with JHU’s current 65,000 number and wait another 2 weeks for CDC to publish the official figures and see just how (in)accurate the numbers are.

No wonder the media has a field day on the data which paints a scarier picture. They might source JHU but not disclose the volunteers that compile it.

It’s just hard to reconcile how a university which has $6 billion in annual revenues can’t divert resources to conduct the research in house?!

Bill Maher bashes MSM for ‘panic porn’ obsession surrounding COVID19

Liberal media host Bill Maher made another sensible 5-minute video which bashes up the mainstream media for its obsession with ‘panic porn’, ridiculous alarmism and confected hysteria.

Maher’s best line was to call out The NY Times for using a North Hollywood event planner to get a quote for a headline which described unemployment as “terrifying.”

 

Debunking liberal funking

An interesting dialogue between liberal media host Bill Maher and Republican congressman, Rep Dan Crenshaw.

It is refreshing to see such a civil dialogue when context and perspective are provided around mainstream media narratives.

One interesting tidbit for FNF Media was why Nancy Pelosi delayed bringing the vote on a $2.5bn supplemental bill to support the CDC, NIH and FDA to help combat the virus to the floor by a week? Instead, she put forward legislation on whether to ban flavoured tobacco. Priorities.

It is a worthwhile 15 minutes.

Nikki Haley’s perspective

Former US Ambassador to the UN gave her 10c worth on coronavirus from the perspective of having been a governor herself. What she says is not dissimilar to that of Australia and the federal-state relationship.

Overheated critics of President Trump accuse him of being an authoritarian. Of not caring about checks and balances, civil rights, and constitutional limits on executive power. And yet, today, many of these same critics demand that he nationalize supply chains, deploy the military on our shores and shut down every town in America. It’s a curious thing.

The coronavirus presents enormous national challenges that call for a strong federal response. But we should not lose sight of the essential role that states and governors must play. America is better served when presidents respect the diversity of states instead of dictating uniform solutions.

As a governor, when you take the oath of office to serve your state, you don’t know what will come your way. During my six years as governor of South Carolina, I dealt with a thousand-year flood, damaging hurricanes, a racially driven church shooting, a white police officer who killed an innocent black victim, and a school shooting.

When times were calm, we would try to get ahead of the curve, holding regular meetings with my emergency team to make sure we were up-to-date on supplies, procedures, logistics and technology. We learned the importance of planning and to control what we could.

I was a Republican governor with a Democrat in the White House. We disagreed on most policy matters, but we put those differences aside to serve the immediate needs of our joint constituents. You don’t serve your people if you let politics get in the way.

If you know a crisis is coming, one of the first things a governor will do is reach out to the White House to coordinate F.E.M.A. relief before it hits. Then, when the trouble arrives, everyone is on the same page.

F.E.M.A. typically sends a liaison who coordinates efforts and assesses vulnerabilities. It’s technical stuff. It requires knowing your own state and building a relationship with those on the federal level who apportion resources. It takes time, effort and foresight.

Once a crisis hits, state responsibility is primary. The federal government can provide crucial resources, but the burden is on the governor and her team to distribute them. No two states are alike, and blanket approaches won’t work.

In today’s crisis, governors from both parties have exemplified strong leadership. They know their residents and their state’s needs better than anyone in the federal government. In the state-federal partnership, governors are in the best position to control what happens on the ground, better than any president could be.

Governors know their state’s mayors and local officials who facilitate aid distribution. They know their local national guard leadership, which in many cases provides essential logistical support. They know their business leaders, who are being called on to uproot their production and services while keeping as many people employed as possible. They know their hospital administrators, who have eyes on the front-line heroes in this war. And they know the leaders of their faith communities, who often spearhead life-saving humanitarian projects.

As our highest nationally elected leader, of course President Trump has enormous responsibility in this unprecedented crisis, and he is marshaling the federal response on a massive scale. But in implementing plans to save people’s lives and keep our economy afloat, look no further than the governors.

They have complicated and difficult jobs. In this crisis, as in any, some are showing their competence and leadership, while others are revealing their shortcomings. It’s true that states shouldn’t have to compete, to bid against each other for supplies at inflated prices. And party politics shouldn’t factor in disbursing federal resources to states. But, most often, this is not the case. Governors who complain about the Trump administration are, in some cases, attempting to distract from their own failures to plan and execute.

Governors are the most successful when they are given the flexibility to lead. The federal government can provide the resources, but it should not take away too much flexibility. New York is not New Mexico. South Dakota is not South Carolina.

Our Constitution has it right: Keep control and decision making close to the people. We are seeing that play out in every state today. We face a painful challenge, but we will get through it. When we do, we will look back and see that governors rose to meet the challenge, and they did it best when Washington did not impose too much on them.”

Now media has an issue with Trump’s $3,100 stake in Sanofi

The story just keeps getting more deranged. Now The NY Times is taking umbrage at the fact that Trump’s family has a $110k stake in a Dodge & Cox global mutual fund that just happens to have Sanofi, the maker of Plaquenil (hydroxychloroquine sulfate), as its largest holding. A whopping 2.9%! Which means his family stake would be c.$3,100.

One imagines if that same fund owned stakes in GM or Boeing that he should be accused of skimming off the top because he is ferried in The Beast and flown around in Air Force One. FedEx is in there too. Better keep an eye on Melania and Ivanka’s outgoing courier mail to ensure that UPS is also getting a fair share.

For the benefit of The NY Times, it might help to know that Trump has no legal control over the asset allocation choices made by a global mutual fund other than choosing to buy or sell it. Furthermore, Sanofi has been a dud stock over the last 5 years in terms of performance.

It would be better had the NYT taken pot-shots at Trump’s dreadful choice in asset manager given Sanofi has been such a dog.

Perhaps it would be nicer to think that the drug actually works. Certainly seems more promising than anything else out there to date.

Sad to think that The NY Times would seemingly prefer the drug fails and people die than Trump get a windfall profit in his 401k.

Trump Derangement Syndrome heading to The Hague for crimes against humanity?

Hague

You have to hand it to Democratic lawmakers who get triggered over anything. When collusion and impeachment failed domestically, why not call upon The Hague for charges of crimes against humanity? Hmmm.

Never mind that Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi was encouraging San Franciscans to “come to Chinatown and join” crowds at a parade in late February. Forget the Democratic NYC Health Commissioner Oxiris Barbot downplaying the health warnings by telling the residents to immerse themselves in Lunar New Year festivities because stigmatization is a far bigger threat to people than a pesky virus.

Guess who is now telling people to stay at home? Yep, you guessed it – Oxiris Barbot. Even though she retweeted someone’s praise of her status as the first Latino female to occupy the post after it had all gone pear-shaped! If only one’s abilities were seen as more important than their identity…NYers would have been happier with an old white guy provided his medical advice kept the city from holding the highest infection rates.

Never mind that The Hill had criticized Trump’s travel ban on Feb 7th as unnecessary, parroting none other WHO, to then write on April 5th that he hadn’t done enough to block travel into the US. Which is it? The NY Times was happy to run a story on Feb 24th saying Trump’s travel ban was more an “emotional or political reaction.

Do Democratic House representatives hold such little faith in the domestic judiciary that Trump needs to be tried in an international court over supposed domestic crimes against innocent civilians? It won’t be long before Nancy Pelosi launches another impeachment trial over coronavirus. We encourage her to do it for the sake of revealing just whether she has any ties to America.

Rep Tavia Galonski’s tweet came shortly after Trump’s media briefing in which he once again spoke of hydroxychloroquine sulfate, a drug which he has previously reported has shown promise as a means of treating COVID-19.

How is it that the mainstream media outlets backflipped on their initial criticism on hydroxychloroquine to acknowledging its potential as reported by the medical profession to flip back to “irresponsibility” again. No country has a silver bullet and in such circumstances

Rep Galonski may have a case if the state was force-feeding strapped down patients against their will. The FDA says otherwise.

On March 28, 2020, the FDA issued an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) to allow hydroxychloroquine sulfate and chloroquine phosphate products donated to the Strategic National Stockpile (SNS) to be distributed and used for certain hospitalized patients with COVID-19. These drugs will be distributed from the SNS to states for doctors to prescribe to adolescent and adult patients hospitalized with COVID-19, as appropriate, when a clinical trial is not available or feasible. The EUA requires that fact sheets that provide important information about using chloroquine phosphate and hydroxychloroquine sulfate in treating COVID-19 be made available to health care providers and patients, including the known risks and drug interactions. The SNS, managed by ASPR, will work with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to ship donated doses to states.

The FDA’s latest fact sheet on hydroxychloroquine is here.

To be honest, who needs the FDA when we can rely on the tweets from a NY Times best-selling author with a law degree, Kurt Eichmann, who proposed 11 questions the White House press corps should ask of Trump with respect to hydroxychloroquine.

1. What dosage should people take?
2. How long should people take it?
3. What studies are you relying on for dosage and time?
3. Are you saying this is prophylactic or post-diagnosis?…(while he won’t know what the last question means if he says anything close to prophylactic)
5. How does hydroxychloroquine prevent viral infection?
6. Since hydroxychloroquine is an immunosuppressant, how isn’t there a risk that it will *increase* the risk of infection?
7. What studies have you reviewed showing it has a preventative effect because I can’t find any. (they don’t exist.)
(If he says for treatment…)
8. At what stage of infection should people take the medicine?
9. What should people with lupus and other autoimmune diseases do to find their medication, since your recommendations have led to a national shortage of hydroxychloroquine?
10. Will the government subsidize lupus & rheumatoid arthritis patients, given the price-gouging happening with these drugs?
11. Are you concerned about lupus and autoimmune patients who can’t find their medication refusing to vote for you because they’re now in pain?

As with any drug, a doctor prescribes medication based on the severity of illness and a whole range of other factors – size, age, gender. Trying to get Trump to answer a series of “gotcha” questions in the hope he bungles some of them just smacks of how little integrity there is in journalism. If Trump told journalists that drinking Drano was great for fixing stomach ulcers, would they believe him? Wouldn’t readers prefer medical opinion?

Let’s deal with the facts.

Hydroxychloroquine sulphate is an FDA approved drug dating back to April 1955. It is best known under the brand name of Plaquenil. There are generic manufacturers such as Teva and Mylan are already making the drug. In the US, it is strictly prescription-only medication. It has been approved to treat malaria

The 65-year-old Plaquenil and its 25-yo generic brothers haven’t been approved for the application of COVID19, which, as we know, in and of itself is a brand new strain of pathogen. So the “drug” has been approved but the application has not.

It is worth noting that it takes on average 12 years and over US$350 million to get a new drug from the laboratory onto the pharmacy shelf. At the company level, it undergoes around three and a half years of laboratory testing, before an application is made to the U.S. FDA to begin the testing on humans. Only 1 in 1000 compounds that enter lab testing will ever make it to the human testing stage.

Which is exactly why the FDA stated in its release late last month that there isn’t enough hard data due to a lack of clinical trials. Stands to reason that a drug we’re trying to find a cure for hasn’t a cure.

The FDA Accelerated Approval pathway was introduced in 1992 so that drugs to treat life-threatening diseases could be brought to market to make a significant impact on the course of diseases. For example, many antiretroviral drugs used to treat HIV/AIDS entered the market via accelerated approval, and subsequently altered the treatment paradigm.

Clearly, there has been no chance to conduct clinical trials on Plaquenil on COVID19 to get official FDA approval. The side effects of Plaquenil, when taken for malaria, are well known with 65 years of data. It is a question of whether the impact of the drug causes other side effects when used to treat COVID19. Hence why the FDA is trying to ensure that people are aware of the risks if they elect to take it.

Yes, the president has a habit of saying unnecessary things. He can be unpresidential at times. We have never hidden that.

However, at what point is Trump deserved of standing trial in The Hague given the timeline of events and an insane liberal media? Perhaps President Xi of China would be a more worthy respondent in the International Criminal Court for the cover-up which led to the outbreak in the first place.