Finally, A Major Media Outlet Admits Florida May Have Handled COVID Better Than California
But don't worry, they didn't fully commit to reality
Major media outlets inarguably played a substantial role in ensuring that ineffective COVID restrictions persisted well past any reasonable justification.
The Los Angeles Times, New York Times, The Atlantic, Washington Post, The Guardian in the United Kingdom...all played a part in justifying and promoting ineffective restrictions, even as the evidence base against them grew rapidly. Instead of performing the role that media publications are designed for; skeptically questioning authority, discovering and relaying facts, or demanding accountability, these major outlets engaged in an all-too familiar practice: laundering politically motivated opinions.
During COVID, the public needed the media, more than ever, to hold elected leaders and so-called "experts" accountable. They needed the media to question whether or not lockdowns, school closures or mask mandates were evidence-based policies. They did the exact opposite.
Now that restrictions have ended, for the most part, and the post-pandemic phase has arrived, some outlets are finally willing to ask important questions. And come to important conclusions. Despite their best efforts.
And while doing their best to defend Newsom and California's authoritarian overreach by ignoring inconvenient information, promoting nonsensical studies and reverting back to disproven assertions, they couldn't help but acknowledge that Florida may have actually done better with COVID than California. It's about time.
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COVID Policies Continued Because Media Purposefully Turned A Blind Eye
It's an inarguable truth that Florida handled COVID better than California did, despite what crude outcomes suggest. And the Times comes close to acknowledging it, becoming one of the first outlets to make the necessary adjustments for age.
"When factoring in demographics, another estimate has Florida with an age-adjusted COVID mortality rate that's only slightly higher than California's," the story reads. "And when adjusting for how Florida's population is relatively unhealthier than California's, another estimate actually ranks Florida better."
Turns out that when you have a significantly older population facing a virus where the elderly are at an elevated risk, it's necessary to adjust for differences in demographics to get a more complete picture. Some of us outside observers have been doing this for literally *years*. And it's always shown that Florida's outperformed what the media and Dr. Anthony Fauci said would happen.
That graph, representing age-adjusted COVID death rates throughout 2020 and into 2021, is even more damning for California than the Times is willing to admit. Because it's during the period when Newsom's lockdowns, which were in effect again in early 2020, as well as late 2020 and into 2021, mask mandates, which were imposed statewide or in many major cities throughout 2020 and 2021, and vaccine passports were all used to try and stop COVID. And Florida still did better.
The Times chose to blame the spread of the Delta and Omicron variants in Florida on Ron DeSantis correctly realizing that the COVID vaccines did not come close to living up to expectations created by Fauci, the CDC and other experts and institutions.
"DeSantis' message on COVID shots evolved from boasting about his state's high vaccination rate among seniors in early 2021 to this year accusing federal agencies of using 'healthy Floridians as guinea pigs.' He asserted that the latest inoculations 'have not been proven to be safe or effective,' despite strong evidence cited by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and U.S. Food and Drug Administration that they are."
Even while tacitly acknowledging that Florida's outcomes are no worse than California's, they refuse to accept that claims of 95-100% efficacy, stopping infections and tamping down transmission were hopelessly wrong.
Of course they do.
The media's disinterest in telling the truth about COVID vaccine efficacy, mask efficacy and the absurdity of school closures and lockdowns allowed politicians like Newsom to continue his nonsensical policies for multiple years. Now while admitting Florida got some things right, they still refuse to criticize him for the authoritarian overreach. They'll never stop promoting their ideology over telling the full story.
Honesty Will Always Take A Backseat To Politics
The Times even admits that by mid-2021, vaccination rates among seniors in Florida and California were nearly identical, eliminating a variable between the two states.
"By mid-June 2021, about 3 in 4 seniors in both Florida and California had completed their primary vaccination series," they write. Yet they attempt to blame an increased rate of people under 65 dying on lower vaccination rates for younger people. Conflating multiple statistics, ignoring contradictory information and as always, defending Gavin Newsom.
"Earlier in the pandemic, only 20% of COVID-19 deaths in Florida were people younger than 65. But that share climbed to 40% during the peak of the Delta wave, according to Jason Salemi, associate professor of epidemiology at the University of South Florida."
"'That was an astonishing number,' he said."
"The lower vaccine uptake in younger adults probably played a role," the article claims.
But there's no evidence that's the case. The Times specifically mentions earlier in the story that Florida has poorer overall health than California, something that would have played a significant contributing role. Not to mention that the increased rate of COVID-attributed deaths could have, and likely was, as a result of increased testing availability leading to COVID being listed on an increasing number of death certificates despite not being an underlying cause.
Lumping in everyone under 65 is also bizarre, considering massive differences in risk between those aged 10-20 and 50-64, for example. As is ignoring that incomes in Florida are generally lower, while California's own data tracker highlights that lower income residents have often had poorer outcomes. Whoops.
In fact, Newsom at one point wanted to tie reopening status to "health equity," meaning that counties would be forced to try and achieve equal outcomes for different racial or income groups before getting permission to move forward in his outrageously incompetent "tier" system.
Of course, they also forgot to mention that California saw a similar decline in 2021 of the percentage of deaths attributed to those over 65. Despite their supposedly superior vaccination success.
California's COVID Mistakes Obvious When Seeing Who Ran Their Response
The incompetence of California is, of course, awe inspiring.
The Times reached out to California's health and human services secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly for comment, who on the one hand used crude data to claim California did better than Florida.
"Do I think California did better than Florida? I think your crude numbers show that we did," Ghaly said.
Then on the other hand, admitted that when adjusting for important factors, the picture completely changes.
"Do I think if you really got small and granular, whether it's age adjustment, or other adjustments, and add layers of comorbidity ... can you split this even further? Absolutely," he added.
"I guess the question for me is: What does it tell you?" he said. "And in California, I think the data does speak for itself."
The data does speak for itself. California did worse.
And the worst part is, based on Ghaly's response, they didn't learn a single lesson from being repeatedly and conclusively proven wrong.
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