The recall of Governor Gavin Newsom seems to have picked up some momentum and in the latest poll, published Tuesday in the LA Times, 50 percent of the likely voters polled said they were going to vote “No” on the recall, which means they want to keep the governor, while 47 percent of likely voters said they were going to vote “Yes” to recall the governor. That is a lot closer than it was one month ago. The surprising thing is that there isn’t any individual Republican who has picked up any momentum or appeared as a significant Republican frontrunner. In fact, California’s handling of COVID-19 is among the best in the nation. The state economy seems to be OK and the state has acquired a substantial surplus, which Newsom is spreading around like manure, and yet everyone is still angry. It looks to me like people are just generally angry, tired of COVID and the constant stops and starts, and just want to express their dissatisfaction with everything. Woe to any politician who is out front. That probably explains why most politicians today, except for some of the crazies, are working hard to keep a low profile and stay out of the public eye. When you consider that California is a very blue state, and in the last governor’s race voted 69.1 percent Democratic (voting for Newsom) and only 38.1 percent Republican (voting for Cox) and then contrast that with the recent LA Times poll, you can understand why so many politicians are hiding. They’re not exactly profiles in courage but they all understand the danger of putting their heads up.
With this new Delta wave of COVID, governments at all levels—federal, state and local—and private companies, also, are losing patience with asking for voluntary compliance from the public. More entities are obviously going to be requiring you get vaccinated or just take a hike. Much as it goes against my own personal grain, making things compulsory does work. When I went to school, we had to be vaccinated for just about everything. I can remember measles, German measles, tuberculosis, small pox, whooping cough and others I can’t even remember. Later, it was polio vaccines. Those vaccines worked. No longer did parents spend endless nights trying to nurse their children through childhood illnesses and mourn children dying of childhood diseases. The vaccines were generally so successful that serious, contagious childhood illnesses became unusual events and it wasn’t that long ago—it was the 20th century. A couple of generations have passed and people have forgotten how children died in childhood from contagious diseases. They’ve forgotten about being locked in the apartment in the hot summer because of the fear of getting a chill and then polio. I can remember in elementary school going to funerals of classmates. That kind of stuff happened, and if we continue to be stupid, that kind of stuff can happen again. What’s different is social media. In the old days, your family doctor was God and his instructions were words from God. Did they make mistakes? Did they sometimes get it wrong? Absolutely, but at their worst they were a heck of a lot better than some guy sitting in his garage in Pomona or Little Rock pumping out crap on the internet, because he has an axe to grind or somehow has discovered a way to make money peddling bull. It’s also hard to know who is an expert since we have so many fake experts out there. Recently, someone sent me a video clip of a French virologist who is of the opinion that the vaccinations of millions of people has probably lead to the various variations in COVID. Delta may be the direct result of our building up immunity to the earlier versions of the virus and he may be correct. This was no ordinary Frenchman, either; in fact, he’s a Noble Prize winning virologist. After all, man and virus have been battling each other forever, each trying to survive the other. However, this is where the messages get a bit strange. The French virologist said we shouldn’t vaccinate for reasons that mystify me, because in time, the virus contagion will subside. He’s probably correct. It’s unlikely to kill everyone on the planet and, in time, it would naturally run its course. That’s what happened in the Middle Ages when the Bubonic plague swept through Europe. Ultimately it did subside but en route it killed about one third of the population of Europe. I would consider that not to be an acceptable public health outcome, then or now. Sadly, many people are seeking a guaranteed outcome without risk and the simple fact is it doesn’t exist. If you make personal medical decisions based on an expectation of 100 percent success, you are doomed to never making decisions, which sadly may be what many of the unvaccinated are doing—and some of those unvaccinated are going to die.
Remember to visit Legacy Park. Not only are the ducks and birds back, but there is also a momma duck with six little ducklings.