Falling from Grace

Spain’s Racist Stamps Program (CNN)

Good morning. Yesterday’s quote was Vice President Kamala Harris opting to celebrate the long weekend instead of our fallen heroes. Today evidence mounts against Anthony Fauci; Biden proposes $6 trillion in new spending; and Spain ends its racist stamps program. Here’s today’s quote:

New USG funding will not be released for gain-of-function research projects that may be reasonably anticipated to confer attributes to influenza, MERS, or SARS viruses such that the virus would have enhanced pathogenicity and/or transmissibility in mammals via the respiratory route. The research funding pause would not apply to characterization or testing of naturally occurring influenza, MERS, and SARS viruses, unless the tests are reasonably anticipated to increase transmissibility and/or pathogenicity.

COVID-19

Famed political doctor Anthony Fauci steadfastly denies funding gain-of-function research at the Wuhan Institute of Virology. Gain-of-function is simply a phrase used to describe the process of beefing up a virus like COVID-19, making it more infectious to preemptively find a vaccine. In an entry for the American Society for Microbiology in October 2012, Fauci seemed far more sanguine about such proposals than he does today. From his paper:

In an unlikely but conceivable turn of events, what if that scientist becomes infected with the virus, which leads to an outbreak and ultimately triggers a pandemic? Many ask reasonable questions: given the possibility of such a scenario – however remote – should the initial experiments have been performed and/or published in the first place, and what were the processes involved in this decision?

Scientists working in this field might say – as indeed I have said – that the benefits of such experiments and the resulting knowledge outweigh the risks. It is more likely that a pandemic would occur in nature, and the need to stay ahead of such a threat is a primary reason for performing an experiment that might appear to be risky.

Within the research community, many have expressed concern that important research progress could come to a halt just because of the fear that someone, somewhere, might attempt to replicate these experiments sloppily. This is a valid concern.

The Weekend Australian unearthed this paper last week, adding that Fauci lifted Barack Obama’s 2014 ban on gain-of-function research under then-President Trump in 2017 without alerting White House officials.

Politics

President Biden unveiled his latest $6,000,000,000,000 spending plan on Friday, the largest national budget in history. Publicly held debt would jump from 98 percent of GDP to 130 percent by 2031, far surpassing the 114 percent-of-GDP debt level in the United States after World War II. Former Treasury Secretary under Bill Clinton and leader of Barack Obama’s National Economic Council Larry Summers said back in March that Biden was pursuing “the least responsible macroeconomic policy we’ve had in the last 40 years.” That was when proposed new spending topped $10 trillion. Far be it for Biden to listen to economic advisors, however. New and proposed spending is close to eclipsing $50,000 for every man, woman, and child in America, with no signs of slowing down.

World

John Stossel led a famed career at ABC news as a consumer reporter. While most news outlets centered around the day’s political happenings, Stossel went after large corporations caught up in shady business dealings. In his most popular video, Stossel travelled to a local mall and sold cupcakes at different prices based on the color of your skin—a racist bake sale. Asians paid the most, followed by whites, then Latinos and blacks, mirroring most affirmative action programs today. You might think this was satire. But Spain went on to implement an identical program through its postal service, Correos. The skin-color stamps program forced those with lighter skin tones to pay more and to subsidize those with more melanin. The so-called equality stamps were part of Correos’ “anti-racism” initiative, a movement where adherents are willfully blinded by their own bigotry. How they thought creating a program where some races are worth less than others would be tolerated is a bit incredible, albeit entirely predictable.

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