Lockdowns Didn’t Work

I came across a Powerline post that confirmed what I expected to see in the media and scientific community, only several months too early.  I wasn’t expecting reconsiderations of our Corona-policies until after November 3rd, but here you go anyway. The post, on a study in The Lancet ran the known data about government actions taken across the globe to fight COVID-19 and came to some interesting, and if you’re a journalist or on twitter, counter-intuitive conclusions.

But before I get to that, first a disclaimer about models. I’m a model skeptic as I’ve noted on more than one occasion.  So I’ve been happy to rip on them for their near constant failed predictions.  So, why I am more inclined to look at this one less skeptically?  This isn’t a model that is making predictions based on incomplete information, it’s a model looking back at what’s already happened, and trying to find correlations.

That’s useful.

But let’s get right to the meat.

“Increasing COVID-19 caseloads were associated with countries with higher obesity, median population age and longer time to border closures from the first reported case. Increased mortality per million was significantly associated with higher obesity prevalence and per capita gross domestic product (GDP). Reduced income dispersion reduced mortality and the number of critical cases. Rapid border closures, full lockdowns, and wide-spread testing were not associated with COVID-19 mortality per million people. However, full lockdowns and reduced country vulnerability to biological threats (i.e. high scores on the global health security scale for risk environment) were significantly associated with increased patient recovery rates. “

Those are some interesting findings.  And by interesting I mean fairly obvious.  Old fat people were associated higher mortality, as well as longer times to closing national borders. Lockdowns on the other hand, didn’t seem to have any correlation to lower mortality.


“A potential protective effect of smoking was identified in a recent evaluation of 17 million adult patients within the National Health Service of the United Kingdom, with 5683 COVID related deaths. In their analysis, current smokers were associated with a reduced risk of COVID-19 related mortality.“

So instead of locking down and destroying our economy and ruining millions of lives, we should have just gotten skinny and started smoking.

I’ll have to remember this for the next Black Death.

A Sampling of Light Beers

Light beers are not part of my regular beer diet.  I consider kicking back and having a beer a treat, so I can’t be concerned overly much about how it affects the bottom line of my bathroom scale. Of course, beers are not for every day in my world.  I’m saving that sort of wacky lifestyle for retirement.  But I do come across a light beer now and again and have made a few snap judgments about some of them.

Warning: I must caveat that all light beers taste like water with a little bit of beer mixed in, so take that into consideration when considering the ratings.


Bud Light Orange

Carbs: 14.3    Calories: 142

Beers with flavors are somewhat of a crapshoot, and that goes double with light beers.  The Orange “taste” really does seem to imitate an orange artificial taste, if that’s what you are looking for.  It started out OK but by the end of the beer, I was really getting sick of that fake orange.

Rating:  Would not buy again

Yuengling Flight

Carbs: 2.6      Calories: 95

Although this beer shares the light beer problem of being watery, it’s actually not that watery.  In other words, it’s in the upper tier of light beers just on that alone.  However it’s still watery enough that it’s somewhat lacking in flavor. And although I felt the faint hint of an aftertaste, it never quite got there, which, in the light beer arena, is not bad.

Rating:  OK if that’s what is left

IC Light Mango Premium Light Beer


Carbs:            5.3      Calories:  126.50   (for a pint)

Small breweries and microbrews don’t usually dip into the Light Beer market since almost always their inspiration is creating flavorful, delicious beers, but Pittsburg Brewing dared dip its toes into it, and came up with a not bad beer. Again, it’s a light beer, but the flavor is there, if of course muted, and diluted.  However on a hot day, this seems like a good choice.

Rating: Pretty good for a Lite

Bud Light Platinum Lager


Carbs: 4.4      Calories: 137

This is described as “triple filtered” so that sounds important.  Plus it’s called Platinum, which sounds fancy.  As far as light beers go, I couldn’t find too much to complain about, but it’s another side reminder that no one is searching out light beers for their full, rich taste.

Rating: Could be a great mixer with a real beer.




Blue Moon LightSky Citrus Wheat


I could keep going on this light beer list.  There are, after all, plenty of light beers to choose from, but after trying this, I decided to stop. I’ve drank enough light beers to know that the flavor runs from bad to OK.  None of them are great enough to enjoy for flavor on it’s own. But this one seems to hit the top levels of “OK.”  The promise of the name is actually met for this beer.  It has a faint hint of citrus and it’s somewhat wheaty.  Watery?  Sure, but not to the degree that the others are. That’s important.

Rating:  If you are going to get Light Beer, get this one.

This may sound like a very lackluster review of beers, but light beers fill a niche for people who want to continue to drink, but are wary of the sheer number of carbs and calories that go along with it.  If you are throwing a party or get-together, you need to have light beers available to accommodate the people who are on nutrition alert.  Not only that, it’s a good way to cut a beer that you’ve decided you don’t like that much.  It’s a useful household item, and I don’t mind having them around.

One Nation, Divisible


Just when you think the establishment GOP couldn’t sink any lower…

Republican senators Johnson, Lankford propose making Juneteenth a federal holiday and dropping Columbus Day

In response to bipartisan efforts to make Juneteenth a federal holiday, Republican Sens. Ron Johnson and James Lankford have proposed eliminating a different federal holiday “in exchange.”

The choice?

Columbus Day.

“We support celebrating emancipation with a federal holiday but believe we should eliminate a current holiday in exchange. We chose Columbus Day as a holiday that is lightly celebrated, and least disruptive to Americans’ schedules,” Johnson, of Wisconsin, said in a statement Wednesday.

Johnson and Lankford of Oklahoma will be seeking to amend a bill making Juneteenth a federal holiday.

This is the “Republican” response? What happened to all of that standing athwart history stuff?  This isn’t standing athwart; it’s running over with a steamroller.  What could possibly be conservative about this?

Johnson said adding to the number of federal holidays would give federal workers an additional day of paid leave and increase the government’s costs. He called his amendment a “counter-proposal that does not put us further in debt.”

Oh this.  Gotcha.

The further we get from the civil war and slavery, the more enflamed we become by it.

In the continued undoing of e pluribus unum, The NFL makes its contribution.

NFL will play Black national anthem ‘Lift Every Voice and Sing’ before each Week 1 game

Starting with the nationally televised regular-season opener between the Houston Texans and Kansas City Chiefs on Sept. 10, “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” also known as the Black national anthem, will be performed before every Week 1 kickoff, before “The Star-Spangled Banner,” according to a person familiar with ongoing discussions. The person spoke to USA TODAY Sports on condition of anonymity because plans have not yet been finalized and announced by NFL officials.

I’ll freely admit my ignorance that there even is a “Black National Anthem.”  I also don’t know the American Indian, Hispanic, or LGBTQWERTY national anthems either, but I’ve a feeling I’ll be educated on that soon enough.  And as for the “White National Anthem,” would that be The Star Spangled Banner?  Serious question I’m afraid.  I’ve no idea if we are still one country anymore, or if we’ve already spun off into our identity groups fighting over the spoils.

The George Floyd effect may turn out to be the most socially significant movement in American history, not the least because it seems to be effectively ending US history.  When everything that happened the day before yesterday becomes verboten, and we no longer even aspire to be one country, what holds us together?

Something to think about this July 4th; when greater and greater numbers of the nationality formerly known as Americans look at the flag and think, “not my country,” and “not my independence day.”  Of course, this is a wave of hysteria and the tide could well break  and thing return to something close to normal, but the longer it goes on, the more we’re looking at a new normal, when everyone has their own independence day, holidays, and carefully nurtured grievances.

Happy Independence Day.  I hope the next one is better than this one, or that there simply is a next one.