Top Three Takeaways – August 24th, 2021
- School mask science made clearer. I don’t know how Leon County Circuit Court Judge John Cooper is going to rule in the case challenging the state’s mask policy mandating parental opt outs. I do know that the school mask science was made even clearer. Throughout this debate in recent weeks, I’ve done what I’ve always done. Aggregated all of the known facts around the issue and in having shared them with you offered an opinion based on them. A quick refresher...13 studies involving masks in an education environment have been published on the National Institutes of Health’s website. All related studies showed teachers are less effective at teaching and students are less effective at learning when wearing masks. Related studies also showed up to 81% of students experienced negative effects from wearing masks to school last year. That can be weighed against the evidence that masks are effective at stopping the spread of COVID-19 by up to 96% depending on mask type. That’s been known and that’s what I’ve shared with you consistently during this debate. New information was introduced by the state Monday regarding mask efficacy in schools that made the school-mask science clearer. The state presented evidence showing 4.8% of students attending classroom education in Florida, in districts with a school mask mandate, contracted COVID-19 last year. For school districts without a mask mandate, it was 5%. 0.2% that’s the difference in COVID-19 spread for mask districts vs optional districts. 0.2%. That’s what this entire debate is about. And for that 0.2% reduction in cases, South Florida’s school districts want to ensure that teachers teach less, students learn less and up to 81% suffer negative personal impacts from being forced to wear a mask inside school all day. Does that even begin to sound logical to anyone? There remain two sides to stories and one side to facts. The state’s evidence, regardless of the outcome, blows the school mask mandate argument into smithereens. Speaking of bogus arguments...
- Ending the federal extended unemployment benefits worked. Remember hearing the stories about how states like Florida which ended the feds extended unemployment benefits early to lure people back to work, didn’t work? Yeah, that was bunk too. The 26 states, including Florida, which ended the federal unemployment benefit assistance in June, have seen people going back to work at a 6% greater increase than in the 24 states where the benefits remain. Especially notable for Florida, the greatest increase in job seekers has been in the leisure and hospitality sector. A Goldman Sachs review of the data showed that there was a connection between the average compensation of certain industries and the job search activity of states that pulled back the federal assistance. In other words, people who had worked in lower compensated industries were more likely to sit at home and collect unemployment as opposed to looking for work. Yet another narrative busted and yet another issue Governor DeSantis was dead on the money about.
- OMG it’s getting worse. Just when you thought the walking-talking debacle that is the Joe Biden administration couldn’t get any worse... It has. So, Jen Psaki, of the Jen Psaki drinking game, returned from vacation, which is naturally what press secretary’s do during a national crisis, and managed to say this... In an exchange with Peter Doocy of Fox News when he asked about Americans being stranded in Afghanistan, she said: I think it's irresponsible to say Americans are stranded. They are not. Umm, wow. Just, wow. Now she has been on vacation. Did she not get the memo? You know, the Taliban has taken control of Afghanistan memo? I’m sure it’s news to the Americans who are pleading with the Biden administration for help to know they’re not actually stranded. The one new reality Jen Psaki might have to wake up to is the truth. One thing that has changed while she was away, is the administration’s ability to make things up and get away with it because of mainstream news media looking the other way.