Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Trump Judge Nixes ‘New Normal’

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

A Trump-appointed judge has finally stood up against the senseless continuing shutdowns by Democrat governors. Federal judges had been going along with totalitarianism at the state level until Monday, when federal judge William Stickman declared that a Democrat governor has acted irrationally.

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf’s never-ending shutdown blocks outdoor rallies by the Trump campaign in the state which may decide the outcome of the presidential election, and has prohibited attendance at other gatherings, too. Prior attempts to restore freedom, including a lawsuit appealed to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court and efforts by the Republican-controlled legislature, had failed.

But those on the side of freedom did not give up, and they finally achieved a legal breakthrough in federal court in Western Pennsylvania, where 8 out of 10 active judges were appointed by Trump. There the University of Pittsburgh is playing football, while Penn State’s Nittany Lions have been sidelined by the Big 10 conference.

Judge Stickman observed that the shutdown order by Gov. Wolf was supposedly necessary to “flatten the curve” and protect hospital capacity against an overflow of patients. No such overflow ever happened and yet the unjustified shutdown continues.

Plaintiffs challenged Gov. Wolf’s restrictions as violations of the First Amendment freedom of assembly, and both the Due Process and Equal Protection clauses of the 14th Amendment. Judge Stickman held in their favor on all of the above in a brilliant 66-page decision which disavows the overly deferential approach taken by other Republican-appointed judges.

“The fact is that the lockdowns imposed across the United States in early 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic are unprecedented in the history of our Commonwealth and our Country. They have never been used in response to any other disease in our history,” Judge Stickman held.

Indeed, Judge Stickman traced the origin of the shutdowns, not merely the virus, to China itself, which he pointed out does not protect individual liberties as we do in the United States. The lockdown approach spread like a domino effect from Wuhan, and “were unheard of by the people of this nation until just this year,” he pointed out.

Gatherings of more than 25 persons indoors and more than 250 persons outside have been prohibited for months in Pennsylvania. This has impeded the ability of President Trump to hold his massive rallies in this all-important state of 20 Electoral College votes.

“Congratulations Pennsylvania,” tweeted President Trump in response to the news that Judge Stickman had struck down its Democrat governor’s restrictions. The Pennsylvania Governor has vowed a swift appeal to the Third Circuit, but he will be greeted by more Trump-appointed judges there.

Short-term restrictions amid an emergency may be entitled to some deference, Judge Stickman wrote, but “that deference cannot go on forever. It is no longer March. It is now September and the record makes clear that Defendants have no anticipated end-date to their emergency interventions.”

He rejected the governor’s invocation of the anachronistic 7-2 decision of Jacobson v. Massachusetts (1905), which is often cited by supporters of mandatory vaccination because it allowed Massachusetts to compel the vaccination of a minister against smallpox. As the judge pointed out, that decision predated the vast expansion of individual rights in the 20th century.

In 1905 the government could infringe on many individual rights, such as freedom of speech, and later denied the right to own gold, which would be unthinkable today. And the Supreme Court carefully limited its decision in Jacobson by saying that government overreach on vaccination should still be checked by the courts.

Judge Stickman rejected the overly deferential standard of the 115-year-old Jacobson decision. He pointed out that “the ongoing and indefinite nature of” of Democrat Gov. Wolf’s actions “weigh strongly against application of a more deferential level of review.”

He found persuasive a recent opinion by Supreme Court Justice Alito, joined by Justice Thomas and Trump-appointed Justice Kavanaugh, when they objected to the Court’s refusal to grant an application for relief to a church in Nevada. “We have a duty to defend the Constitution, and even a public health emergency does not absolve us of that responsibility,” Justice Alito wrote.

Judge Stickman criticized the Democrats’ “one-size fits all approach,” whereby the “vast diversity of the Commonwealth” of Pennsylvania is treated identically by the shutdown. Pennsylvania “has dense urban areas, commuter communities servicing the New York metropolitan area, small towns and vast expanses of rural communities,” over which the “virus’s prevalence varies greatly.”

Democrats’ shutdown orders have created “a topsy-turvy world where Plaintiffs are more restricted in areas traditionally protected by the First Amendment than in areas which usually receive far less, if any, protection.” Penn State football and the entire Nation should applaud this decision against shutdowns that infringe on our fundamental rights.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work. These columns are also posted on pseagles.com.

Tuesday, September 8, 2020

Biden-Harris Would Loot the Midwest

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

While California’s raging wildfires have sent smoke billowing as far away as Kansas, the Biden-Harris ticket would extend its political power to the Midwest, too. California politicians have been looting middle America and the placement of Kamala Harris as the shadow president would pick midwesterners’ pockets even further.

California already controls the House of Representatives through Nancy Pelosi as its Speaker. The San Francisco-based Pelosi effectively holds the purse strings for our entire Nation and can shut down the government until she gets what she wants.

On the other side of the Capitol, both California Senators sit on the powerful Judiciary Committee, where they brutally harangued Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh prior to his confirmation in 2018. Dianne Feinstein is the oldest sitting U.S. Senator and one of its most influential members.

Electing the Biden-Harris ticket would accomplish a trifecta by placing a liberal California politician in the White House, too. Given Joe Biden’s declining capacity, it would effectively put the fringe Leftists who run the San Francisco-based Big Tech industry in charge of the entire nation.

Ouch to the Midwest if this happens. Already California politicians have been transferring wealth and jobs away from the Rust Belt states of Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan and Wisconsin. The shutdowns during the coronavirus pandemic boosted Big Tech by forcing people to rely more on the internet, while hurting auto manufacturers who had to close their factories and suffer declines in sales.

Radical environmentalists would extend their reach if Democrats win in November, and they have already been forcing the transfer of billions from the heartland to California. Biased global warming regulations, which penalize some pollution in favor of others, have caused Detroit automakers to pay billions to the electric car maker Tesla as regulatory credits.

California is home to the wealthiest corporations in the world, including Apple, Google, Facebook, and now Tesla, whose stock market value is higher than all the other automakers combined. Michigan’s auto industry should not be compelled to transfer billions of dollars to Tesla based on misguided regulations about climate change.

The batteries required for electric cars cause as much pollution as traditional cars do, but with different toxins. Batteries require rare metals which are mined in ways detrimental to the environment, and both the manufacturing and disposal of batteries pollute our scarce water supplies more than traditional cars do.

West Virginia voters have gotten the message about how radical environmentalists cost them jobs, and Trump carried that formerly Democrat state by a whopping 42% in 2016. Ohio voters, too, have awakened to the harm caused by the liberal elite to their economy, and Trump carried it by 8% last time.

Next door, Pennsylvania faces many of the same energy issues as West Virginia and Ohio. A Chamber of Commerce study estimates that 609,000 jobs in Pennsylvania depend on fracking, and that it would increase the cost of living there by $4,654 annually if fracking were prohibited, as Kamala Harris promised last year.

Joe Biden, or “Hiden” as Trump calls him for hiding out for months in his home during the coronavirus pandemic, was born and raised in Pennsylvania and enjoys a few percentage-points advantage based on that. But the economic harm to be caused by stopping Pennsylvania’s burgeoning energy industry could become a 10-point issue on Election Day.

Another way Californians tax the Midwest is through litigation, where liberals forum-shop to file in federal court in San Francisco in order to obtain a Democrat-appointed judge. That is what plaintiffs’ attorneys have done in looting the 120-year-old midwestern company Monsanto, now owned by Bayer.

The lawsuits over Roundup, Monsanto’s effective weed killer used widely by farmers and homeowners, are taking more than $12 billion from workers and shareholders located predominantly outside the jurisdiction of California’s courts. That money enriches liberal attorneys, and some of it goes into politics to defeat Republican candidates for office.

When Kamala Harris was California’s Attorney General, she aggressively harassed out-of-state companies to force them to make enormous payments for having made the mistake of selling products in the liberal state. In 2016, she shook down Volkswagen for a shocking sum of $14.7 billion. She then allocated $2.7 billion of that to “a trust fund for environmental mitigation projects,” which finances environmentalist groups to look for the next target to shake down.

Many of those targets are midwestern companies that provide much-needed manufacturing jobs in the heartland. President Trump has added more than 300,000 manufacturing jobs to our economy after Obama-Biden caused hundreds of thousands of such jobs to be lost, which Biden defiantly said would never come back.

On Monday, the S&P 500 Index declined to include the California company Tesla, which sent its stock spiraling downward. California environmentalists, through Biden-Harris, are likewise not worthy of controlling the White House.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work.

These columns are also posted on pseagles.com.

Thursday, September 3, 2020

Importing Third World Medical School Graduates

Scientific American op-ed
Every year, more than 4,000 foreign graduates of international medical schools come to the United States for a residency program. They rarely return home to serve the countries that raised and educated them. Meanwhile, more than 2,000 graduates from U.S. medical schools each year are blocked from becoming doctors because there are not enough residency programs for them to enter, and they cannot practice medicine without this training experience. A further 2,000 American graduates of international medical schools are also denied the opportunity to practice medicine in the U.S. for the same reason. As COVID-19 has inevitably spread to developing countries, this policy will come to be seen for what it is: robbing developing countries of their desperately needed medical professionals. This must stop, even though American medical care benefits from being able to take the best doctors for ourselves.
Note how this is only presented as an argument for America to change American policy to benefit other countries. A better reason is that America should be taking care of its own citizen. If an American citizen completes medical school and wants to become a licensed physician, he should be shut out by a scheme to import foreigners to take his place.

Tuesday, September 1, 2020

Mail-In Voting: Return to Sender

The Phyllis Schlafly Report By John and Andy Schlafly Unlike school, the election or reelection of the president cannot be delayed, because its timetable is written into the Constitution. It’s too late now to change the procedures by which our ballots will be cast and counted, and “return to sender” should apply to the proposal to elect our president by mail.

Electing the president involves tens of thousands of officials in 50 states and over 4,000 counties, not to mention the massive volunteer army of citizens who staff over 100,000 polling places. Adherence to proper procedure is a vital safeguard as we select a single person to exercise what the Constitution calls “the executive power” of the United States.

With so much riding on the outcome, we must resist the pressure by Democrats to use COVID-19 as a pretext to change the process at the last minute. Despite the pandemic, sports leagues have not changed the rules by which hits, runs, errors, touchdowns, extra points, goals, and other game-winning events are measured and tabulated.

Even Democrat-leaning columnists are beginning to recognize that it is just not feasible for the widespread use of mail-in ballots in this election, as some have called for. Partly it is a question of scale: our election system was not built for 100 million ballots to be sent out to eligible voters and then mailed back and tabulated in the short time available.

Nor is there any way for millions of mail-in ballots to be counted fairly and accurately enough for Americans to accept the candidate who declares victory in such an untested process. No system ever works perfectly the first time it is used, but the winner will be entitled to the keys to the White House, the nuclear “football,” and the appointment of judges for the next four years.

Over 200 lawsuits have already been filed, mostly by Democrats, in a well-funded effort to change various aspects of the process by which the upcoming election will be conducted. Here are a few examples, but there are many more in the pipeline that could affect the outcome.

In Texas, the Democrat county clerk of massive Harris County (Houston) announced plans to mail absentee ballot applications to all 2.2 million registered voters. The Republican state attorney general filed suit to stop that plan because state law limits absentee ballots to persons with health disabilities or other good reasons for not casting a ballot in person at a polling place.

In Iowa, two Democrat county clerks were sending ballot applications in which critical voter information was “prepopulated.” In other words, the registered voter’s personal information (including voter ID number) was already filled in, ostensibly for the voter’s convenience.

Judges in the two counties, Linn (population 200,000) and Woodbury (population 100,000), issued separate rulings last week putting a stop to that practice, which could have allowed someone other than the voter to submit a prepopulated ballot application. Both judges ordered their county clerks to issue new absentee ballot applications with blanks to be fully completed by the voter as state law requires.

In both counties, the clerks had repeated the Democrats’ mantra that precautions are unnecessary because voter fraud is virtually non-existent, but as Judge Patrick Tott of Woodbury County pointed out, “it is also the type of fraud that is almost impossible to detect.”

“From a practical perspective,” Judge Tott continued, “once fraud has occurred it will already likely be too late. Sending out absentee ballot requests with all the information that a person that intends to commit fraud would need certainly does not limit the likelihood of fraud taking place, but would likely help to facilitate it.”

Linn County Judge Ian Thornhill separately observed: “It is implausible to conclude that near total completion of an absentee ballot application by the auditor is authorized under Iowa law where the legislature has specifically forbidden government officials from partially completing the same document.”

As the two Iowa decisions illustrate, legitimate absentee ballots require a high degree of time and attention by both the voter and the county clerk (or auditor, as the county official is called in Iowa). Most counties are unprepared to cope with a surge in absentee ballots, and most voters are likewise unprepared to cope with the amount of paperwork required to vote absentee.

Mail-in voting is too complicated for too many voters. There are too many ways in which a careless voter can spoil his ballot, causing it to be rejected by election officials, with no time to fix or cure the mistake.

Many voters would run out of time to complete the process of requesting and casting an absentee or mail-in ballot. According to a recent survey by the New York Times, 35 states do not allow enough time to request, receive, and return a mail-in ballot.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work. These columns are also posted on pseagles.com.

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Voting by Mail Cannot Elect a President

The Phyllis Schlafly Report By John and Andy Schlafly

On the first night of the Republican convention, CNN cut away from President Trump’s speech because, as anchor Anderson Cooper arrogantly explained, Trump “started off falsely attacking mail-in voting. He’s continuing to attack mail-in voting as his postmaster general testifies that the attacks are ‘unhelpful.’”

CNN did not explain why Trump’s criticisms of mail-in voting were “false” or who gave it the right to censor the President’s remarks, when even NPR and the Washington Post report on the hazards of delivering ballots by mail. Putting aside the obvious potential for fraud when voters do not appear in person, the normal error rate of the Postal Service is just too great for a presidential election.

In the 2020 primaries, when millions voted by mail for the first time, we saw how badly the system failed in its mission to deliver ballots in time to be counted. NPR reported that at least 550,000 mail-in votes were rejected by election officials in 30 states, while the Washington Post said 534,000 were rejected in 23 states.

The number of rejected ballots was more than 60% higher than the 316,000 mail ballots rejected in all 50 states in the 2016 general election. In the crucial states of Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin, which Trump won by 80,000 votes combined in 2016, some 60,480 mail-in ballots were rejected in this year’s primary elections.

There are many valid reasons why mail-in ballots might not be counted by election authorities. Reasons include lack of a required signature on the proper line; the signature does not match the voter’s signature on file; lack of a postmark on the envelope; and the ballot arrives too late.

There is no way the voter can cure any of these defects, or even be notified that his ballot is being rejected. Vote tallies must be completed and turned in to the secretary of state by a deadline which is often 7 to 14 days after the election.

While elections for state or local offices can be disputed, litigated, and even redone amid a system failure, the election for President of the United States allows no such leeway. The Supreme Court ruled in Bush v. Gore (2000) that vote counts must be completed in time for the Electoral College to meet on the first Monday after the second Wednesday in December, a date which cannot be postponed.

An official U.S. postmark on the envelope containing the ballot has long been required as proof that the ballot was mailed before election day. Postmarks are supposed to be applied to first-class mail, but many envelopes are delivered without a legible postmark, thereby invalidating the ballot.

Five Western states have conducted all-mail elections, but they are not battleground states in the race for president. If the vote is not expected to be close in those states, we can tolerate more errors from the election machinery.

The post office was created by the U.S. Constitution and played an important role in American history, but its importance has greatly diminished in recent decades. Tens of millions of Americans have stopped using the Postal Service for receiving and paying bills, because the internet and smartphones are so much more reliable.

Readers may remember when lobbies of the nation’s post offices were filled with people picking up Social Security checks on the second or third day of each month. If you remember those days, you may also remember a lineup of disgruntled senior citizens waiting to see a postal clerk because their government checks did not arrive on time.

All those postal customers disappeared when the federal government switched to electronic delivery of Social Security benefits. Other agencies did likewise, distributing food stamps and other welfare benefits by prepaid debit card.

Many other Americans stopped using the post office after they were hit with unexpected late fees because their payments for utilities and credit cards were not delivered promptly. Companies regularly nag their customers to switch to paperless billing, while warning you to allow 7 to 10 days if you insist on paying your bills by mail.

If you file your income tax return electronically, as most taxpayers do, you received your $1,200 stimulus payment by direct deposit within a few days after Congress appropriated the money. If you are among the declining number of taxpayers who still file your returns by mail (with extra stamps for extra schedules), then you had to wait 60 days or more for it.

If the IRS, Social Security, welfare, unemployment, and banks have abandoned the Postal Service in favor of electronic transactions, why do Democrats insist on using the creaky old Postal Service to conduct the presidential election? A government agency hobbled by archaic procedures cannot be reinvented in time before Americans cast over 140 million ballots.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work.

These columns are also posted on pseagles.com.

Tuesday, August 18, 2020

How Trump Finds 10M New Votes

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

To win comfortably in less than three months, President Trump needs to find 10 million new votes. The prospect of millions of dubious mail-in ballots adds further pressure on Republicans to attract votes.

The new voters the GOP needs are those who may be unsure or too afraid to vote at all, or who are disillusioned by the coronavirus pandemic and the responses to it. This includes people who lined up to attend Trump rallies in the past, but failed to show up for his rallies this summer in Oklahoma and South Dakota, primarily due to fear of contracting COVID-19.

Ten million new voters are not easy to find and persuade in the little over two months that remain from now until November 3. Team Biden is confident that Trump cannot pull this out, and that the election is already over.

But in fact the ten million new votes for Trump are there for the asking, and we even know where to look. They are among the roughly 20 million Americans who watched and supported the July 27 news conference by a group of white-coated physicians who endorse early treatment of COVID-19 with hydroxychloroquine (HCQ).

That massive audience, younger and many times the size of the viewership of cable news shows, contains the votes that Republicans can have for the asking. The Big Tech monopolies certainly knew how seriously that audience threatened the candidacy of Joe Biden, so they took down the video almost as quickly as it was posted.

Trump can quench the thirst of those 20 million viewers of the HCQ press conference. Neither addictive nor expensive, HCQ is reportedly consumed like water in Africa, where it is routinely used by residents and visitors alike to protect against malaria. Trump will win if he makes it available.

According to Trump’s liberal opponents, attending a Trump rally could be as dangerous as visiting a malaria-infected region of Africa. Just as HCQ is prescribed for travelers to Africa, it should be prescribed as a prophylaxis for attendees at Trump rallies where liberals say that participants risk deadly exposure to COVID-19 merely by attending.

Better yet, Trump could arrange for open-minded pharmacists to be there to fill the prescriptions for HCQ on the spot. After taking this preventive medication, attendees would then rock the rally with new confidence and enthusiasm.

Imagine the twin benefits that would yield for the 20 million Americans seeking access to HCQ: they would obtain the protective medicine they want, and also have the opportunity to help reelect Trump. This would be a “win win” for everyone except Joe Biden, who would ramble incoherently against it.

Instead of seeking new votes as Republicans can be doing, Democrats push for universal mail-in voting that would have no more integrity than the junk mail that clogs our mailboxes. Republicans are right to reject mail-in voting for reasons that include delay, lack of security, and expense.

Recent primary elections in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York were a real-life test of whether mail-in ballots can be delivered in time. The results should refute the idea that an election can be reliably conducted by diverting ballots through the Postal Service.

All three states received 10 to 20 times as many mail-in ballots as they had ever received before, mostly arriving at the last minute or even after election day. New York’s Democrat primary was held on June 24, but the selection of nominees in its 16th and 12th congressional districts was not determined until July 17 and August 5, respectively.

Nancy Pelosi has recalled the House of Representatives for a rare August session to deal with this self-inflicted crisis. But her solution would shovel money into a federal agency that was never designed to conduct a national election and cannot, even with unlimited resources, provide the security and reliability that Americans rightly demand for this presidential race.

First-class mail volume peaked in 2000 and has fallen steadily in the 20 years since then, with no end in sight. The Postal Service has struggled to fill the gap by delivering more advertising mail and packages, but those competitive services cannot support the massive postal infrastructure if first-class letter mail is replaced by electronic communications.

The Constitution authorized Congress to establish post offices, but it has no responsibility to insure that ballots are delivered on time. First-class postage (currently 55 cents) does not include tracking or delivery confirmation, which can be purchased for an additional $.80 to $2.85, and the cost of guaranteed delivery ranges from $7.50 for 2- to 3-day service to $26.35 for next-day service.

Victory in November requires saying no to unreliable mail-in voting, but yes to inexpensive, preventative treatment of COVID-19. Let the Trump rallies return with confidence, and carry him to victory.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work. These columns are also posted on pseagles.com.

Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Football’s Goal-Line Stand Against COVID

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

The suspension of college football this fall, along with the disruption of other school sports, has awakened many Americans to the failed liberal approach to COVID-19. Masks and social distancing are incompatible with the sport of football, which 100 million Americans enjoy.

College football was saved by President Theodore Roosevelt in 1905, and Donald Trump could earn a spot beside him on Mount Rushmore by saving it again in 2020. Trump would thereby avoid the mistake made by the armchair President Jimmy Carter in blocking Americans, many of whom had trained their entire lives, from attending the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow.

When some Americans called for banning college football, Teddy Roosevelt acted decisively to save the sport for his own four sons, the oldest of whom was then an 18-year-old freshman at Harvard. Roosevelt’s poor eyesight prevented him from playing college football, but our youngest-ever president saw the value of contact sports to his four boys growing up in the White House.

Many parents dream of their son scoring a touchdown, making a tackle, or intercepting a pass in a high-school or college football game. Students must work exceptionally hard to make their team and earn college scholarships.

It is unfair to shut down school sports while casinos, liquor stores, and street protests are allowed to continue. At a recent congressional hearing our national nanny, Dr. Anthony Fauci, was unable to justify this disparity in response to good questions posed by Rep. Jim Jordan, himself a championship college athlete.

Football is still a dangerous sport whose risks, for a young person, are greater than contracting COVID. Shutting down school sports based on the virus is as silly as telling race car drivers not to drive too fast.

During the 1918 Spanish flu pandemic, which was far deadlier to young people than the Wuhan virus is today, college football continued to be played. At least one photograph from that time shows a crowded stadium of football fans wearing masks.

Fans in the stands are essential to football and other sports, whether in high school, college or professional leagues. As President Trump said this morning on the Clay Travis show, a popular sports talk channel, “You can’t have empty seats” for spectator sports.

Major League Baseball risks becoming a fringe sport by playing exhibition games with cardboard cutouts in the seats and fake crowd noise over the loudspeakers. Without real fans expressing their spontaneous reaction to what they see on the field, sports will become unhealthy objects of gambling rather than athletic achievement.

Things never had to be this way, and still don’t. If the bureaucrats had emphasized preventive and early treatment for all those exposed to the virus, rather than trying to hospitalize, intubate, and ventilate the very sick, America could already be up and running.

According to one report nearly 90% of COVID patients who were placed on a ventilator did not come off of it alive. The rush to acquire ventilators has proven to be a great mistake that may have actually caused many more deaths than it saved.

But medicine-by-the-numbers, also known as “cookbook medicine,” has caused COVID patients breathing adequately on their own to be placed on ventilators based on low blood oxygen levels. Bureaucrats and hospital administrators who do not practice medicine themselves pushed the use of ventilators, rather than early medication to keep patients out of hospitals.

Way back in early April, New York City emergency medicine physician Cameron Kyle-Sidell sounded the alarm bells against ventilators by saying that “we are operating under a medical paradigm that is untrue. I believe we are treating the wrong disease, and I fear that this misguided treatment will lead to a tremendous amount of harm to a great number of people in a very short time.”

Instead of listening to frontline doctors who actually treat COVID patients, the response to COVID has been controlled by bureaucrats and academics, who may have a political motive to extend the shutdown or a financial conflict-of-interest in expensive treatments.

In March Dr. Fauci insisted that the Democrat New York Governor Andrew Cuomo be given immediately the 30,000 ventilators which he demanded. How many COVID patients have ventilators harmed, and why haven’t Democrat governors allowed public access to early treatment for COVID?

Even Dr. Fauci has recently backed away from the false hope that vaccination alone would halt COVID and enable Americans to get back to normal in the foreseeable future. Inexpensive preventive medication would confer that much-needed benefit.

Many football fans would be happy to take hydroxychloroquine on their way to a stadium to root for their favorite team. If this inexpensive medication having a 65-year track record of safety were made widely available, we would be talking about touchdowns instead of unemployment.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work. These columns are also posted on pseagles.com.

Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Wuhan Virus Takes Life of Herman Cain

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

Herman Cain, as co-chair of Black Voices for Trump, was helping on reelection and yet his life has been taken from him prematurely by the Wuhan virus. Cain was hospitalized with the virus on July 1 and languished there for four weeks until passing away on July 30.

He was essential both as a conservative and a courageous human being. He spoke out against the political interference with hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) as an effective preventive and early medication for COVID-19, and despite tweets from the hospital there is no indication that he timely received that beneficial treatment.

Instead, his millions of supporters were told that he would make it through with a course of treatment that included receiving oxygen. The liberal approach of hospitalizing first, and then treating without early use of HCQ, has been unsuccessful for many COVID-19 patients, and hospitalization nearly resulted in death for the vigorous prime minister Boris Johnson in England.

Cain was fit and traveling frequently before he was hospitalized with trouble breathing. He was not obese and he had conquered cancer nearly 15 years ago, which he recounted in riveting talks to many audiences.

Throughout his political career Cain was viciously targeted by the Left as other black conservatives are. He ran for president in 2012 and the liberal media went after him harder than any other candidate. At age only 74, he was younger than the Democratic nominee Joe Biden who undoubtedly would receive essential early treatment to overcome COVID-19 if Biden ever does contract it. Biden would not languish in a hospital for weeks as Boris Johnson and Herman Cain did, with Cain tragically not surviving.

Georgia continues to interfere with the use of HCQ to treat victims of the Wuhan virus, by enforcing unprecedented regulations written especially to block access to this medication. Liberal bureaucrats in Georgia imposed an emergency regulation to prohibit access to HCQ by Herman Cain and others unless the prescription has a diagnosis “consistent with the evidence for its use.”

According to the opponents of Donald Trump (and Herman Cain), that regulation prevents a prescription for HCQ from ever being filled to treat COVID in Georgia. Yet had Cain been exposed to COVID in any of dozens of foreign countries which allow access to HCQ, then he could have received it early in the course of the disease and still be with us today.

Merely 1,600 miles south of Atlanta where Cain died in a hospital is Costa Rica, which has held its mortality rate from COVID to only one-fifteenth the rate per million in the United States. In Costa Rica, free of the anti-Trump interference with access to safe medication, HCQ is widely available for preventive and early care for the disease.

The hospitals in the United States are far better funded than the hospitals in Costa Rica, but it is medication that costs less than a dollar a pill which seems more effective than ventilators and ICUs. Impoverished countries which do not even have running water in their hospitals are overcoming the Wuhan virus better than the politicized health care in the United States is.

Last Wednesday liberal regulators in Ohio took the unprecedented step of completely banning the use of HCQ to treat COVID-19 except in very narrow cases of clinical trials, many of which have also been shut down or delayed. Perhaps a Never-Trumper in Ohio thought this was a clever step forward to perpetuate this crisis and defeat Donald Trump, but even its timid Republican Governor Mike DeWine found that over-the-top.

The following day Gov. DeWine “asked” the Ohio Board of Pharmacy to reverse its ban on HCQ, a ban that was contrary to all customary rules allowing physicians to prescribe approved medication for off-label uses. Embarrassed, the Ohio regulators did withdraw their ban, but uncertainty remains there because they plan to study the issue further.

Meanwhile, Yale School of Public Health epidemiology Professor Harvey Risch stated on national television that “75,000 to 100,000 lives will be saved” if HCQ were made available. Though Yale is far from a conservative institution, Yale Professor Risch candidly observed that “we’re basically fighting a propaganda war against the medical facts.”

There was a time not long ago when hospitals were built and run on moral principles, often with religious affiliation. Much of that is gone now, with profits, politics, and utilitarian ethics dominant at most hospitals, which focus as much on the bottom line amid political bias than on saving lives at any cost.

Hospitals which received HCQ from the Strategic National Stockpile have not even used the medication early for patients immediately upon admission for COVID-19. Most hospitals and state governments have returned the medication unused to the Stockpile, where more than 50 million doses deteriorate to eventually be thrown out while thousands of Americans die without access to it.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work. These columns are also posted on pseagles.com.

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

Defeating COVID by Executive Order

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

Censorship by Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter is in full throttle in deleting information about the successful treatment of COVID-19, as described Monday by physicians who spoke in D.C. at a press conference. There have been more than 14 million views of a video in which physicians explain how effective hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) has been for their COVID patients, but Big Tech is censoring it.

Liberal, anti-Trump tech monopolies are on the rampage with their modern equivalent of book-burning. Twitter suspended the account of the President’s son, Don Jr., because he dared to tweet out information favorable to HCQ, and Twitter deleted retweets by the president, too.

Amid this blatant censorship, it is time for President Trump to go directly to the American people. By Executive Order he should command release of the more than 50 million doses of HCQ which are being withheld from the public in the Strategic National Stockpile.

President Trump should also order his Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS), Alex Azar, to post updated lists of where the public can access COVID medication without interference by Never-Trumpers and comrades of Anthony Fauci, who has again disparaged the effectiveness of HCQ despite its success in numerous studies and many countries for treating COVID.

President Trump was right to retweet complaints about interference by Democrats with timely, early treatment for COVID. The election may hinge on whether people are allowed to obtain early treatment for the disease, and blocking access interferes with Trump’s reelection.

Meanwhile, the sudden infection by COVID of 15 Florida Marlins baseball players is alarming not only to baseball fans, but to everyone concerned about the contagiousness of this disease. This casts doubt on whether the NFL football season, which involves more people in closer contact, will proceed.

The liberal fool’s gold of vaccination is opposed by a large part of Trump’s base of supporters. A recent ABC News/Washington Post poll found that nearly 40% of evangelicals are unlikely to get vaccinated against coronavirus, even if it were made available for free.

This opposition to vaccination is even higher among Republicans, and higher still (45%) among strong conservatives, so the resistance is not merely religious. President Trump won in 2016 by garnering a record-breaking 81% of the white evangelical vote.

Reelection of Trump requires holding or surpassing his 2016 share of this massive voting bloc. But that entails appealing to how evangelicals and other conservatives want – and do not want – to address coronavirus.

Many Trump voters do not want the government mandating a vaccine against coronavirus, even if one could be developed. If the virus is the result of bioterrorism, an effective vaccine may not even be possible, or if feasible may be easily circumvented by a mutation of the virus.

Another poll cited on June 30 by the journal Science indicated that merely half of Americans would receive a coronavirus vaccine if made available to the public. The other half are predominantly Trump supporters, and promoting a quest for such a vaccine is not what they want.

Impervious to these numbers, Trump’s advisers have pushed through a $1.95 billion contract for Pfizer to produce a coronavirus vaccine, at taxpayer expense. The pro-vaccine advisers even got Trump to travel to North Carolina to visit a vaccine manufacturing facility on Monday to promote their approach.

The 21-time Grammy winner Kanye West, who has sold 140 million albums and downloads, is an evangelical black rapper who symbolizes potential support for Trump among minorities. His skepticism about a coronavirus vaccine is typical among evangelicals: “So when they say the way we’re going to fix COVID is with a vaccine, I’m extremely cautious.”

“That’s the mark of the beast. They want to put chips inside of us, they want to do all kinds of things, to make it where we can’t cross the gates of heaven,” West added, and millions who do not agree with Kanye’s views are still opposed to mandatory vaccination.

The eagerness with which mega-billionaire Bill Gates seeks a coronavirus vaccine adds to the discomfort. He has heavily promoted population control, while his monopoly over the Windows operating system for computers has subjected many to unwanted influence by his company, Microsoft.

The skepticism expressed by Kanye West to a coronavirus vaccine is not limited to himself, or to evangelicals. No vaccine is even possible before the election, as Fauci himself has said that it takes 12 to 18 months to develop a vaccine.

Trump has a golden opportunity to stand up again for ordinary Americans against the liberal elite and Deep State who are blocking access to inexpensive medication for COVID. He should issue Executive Orders releasing the federal stockpile of medication directly to the American people, and command his HHS Secretary Azar to post where Americans can access HCQ without interference.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work. These columns are also posted on pseagles.com.

Tuesday, July 21, 2020

Mask Police Not the Answer

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

A stark difference between the approach of President Trump and the newly radicalized Democratic Party is revealed by the issue of mandatory face masks. The “mask police” mentality of the Dems is inciting an Orwellian society of snitches and bullies.

Democrats are now insisting that everyone be required to wear masks, and that anyone seen not wearing a mask be reported to the authorities. This is despite how leading liberal television commentators, including Chris Cuomo of CNN, were spotted outside without masks while they were being quarantined for COVID-19.

The wearing of masks in public places causes harm beyond COVID, which is why face coverings have long been against the law in many U.S. states and in other countries. There is no substitute for seeing the faces of strangers on the street and in stores.

A witness cannot give proper evidence in court while masked, for example. Reading a witness’ face is essential to determine his credibility.

The idea of a faceless society has long symbolized descent into totalitarian control, but that is where we are headed. The mask police are determined to exploit the COVID crisis to turn us into a faceless society.

A woman with a medical condition preventing her from wearing a mask recently entered a Walmart in Summit County, Utah, where masks are mandatory. In that Utah county, residents are required not only to wear masks, but to report on anyone seen without a mask so that the police can rush out and give the person a summons or ticket.

Is this what our society should become? With all the violent protests occurring, one would think that local authorities have better ways to spend their scarce resources than to be mask police.

A fellow Walmart shopper apparently saw the woman's bare face and took the law into his own hands. He accosted the woman, allegedly yelling sarcastically “thanks for wearing a mask!!!”

Then the male shopper rammed his shopping cart repeatedly into the cart of the maskless woman, as captured on surveillance video in the store. The bare-faced shopper was allegedly injured by the attack.
Some countries, such as Sweden, have rejected the suggestion that masks be required, and never shut down its society. Sweden indicated that masks can do more harm than good, and could create a false sense of security.

The mortality rate from COVID-19 in Sweden is not significantly worse than in the United States, or in Western European countries which have required masks for many weeks. All have mortality from the disease of less than one in a thousand in the overall population.

Sweden is not the only country to successfully reject masks. Iceland, as another example, rejected going the route of the mask police and never locked its country down either, but still successfully defeated COVID-19.

The latest data show that Iceland has had a mortality of only 29 per million residents, which is less than 7% the reported mortality rate in the United States. Iceland had an outbreak of COVID-19, but then did what Democrats should have supported here: quarantine travelers from other countries.

These steps were what Peter Navarro, the trade advisor to Trump in the White House, wanted to do by closing travel from China when the COVID pandemic first began. But it was Trump's opponents, including Hillary Clinton-supporter Anthony Fauci, who opposed adopting sensible measures early to protect the American people from the Wuhan virus.

There are many valid reasons why a particular individual may be better off not wearing a mask, like the Walmart shopper who had a medical justification. Besides, in a vast open store with high ceilings like Walmart, it is not obvious how a mask would really make a difference as people still touch shopping carts and check-out counters.

When people take off their masks after returning to their cars, their hands typically touch their faces, which the CDC has long said is a particularly dangerous habit. Dr. Fauci even wants us to stop shaking hands permanently to reduce germ transmission by touching.

One might wonder if people will ever be allowed to see others smile again, as the mask police enforce their unreasonable demands. We cannot allow the government to deprive us of the ability to see emotions of other people through their facial expressions, as depicted in the science fiction classic Invasion of the Body Snatchers.

Once Democrats get a new rule installed, such as mandatory masks, it becomes very difficult to ever remove it. Democrat President Truman delayed lifting restrictions imposed for World War II until a landslide Republican victory in November 1946 forced him to.

President Trump is right to reject wearing a mask in most places. Bandits and anarchists wear masks, not the leader of the free world.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work. These columns are also posted on pseagles.com.

Tuesday, July 14, 2020

OTC for HCQ to End COVID

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

It is time to take the bull by the horns to conquer the Wuhan virus. Drastic action is necessary, like on December 8, 1941 after Japan bombed Pearl Harbor.

President Trump should order immediate public access to hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) by making the medication available over-the-counter (OTC). Liberals have interfered with public access to this medication for COVID-19 through the old-fashioned route of requiring a prescription and then having a pharmacist fill or reject the prescription.

Millions of Americans do not visit physicians, and cannot obtain a prescription for HCQ if they did. Even if you have been exposed to COVID-19, you cannot obtain a prescription for HCQ in most states because regulators prohibit dispensing it without a positive test result, which typically cannot be obtained until late in the progression of the disease.

No one credibly doubts that HCQ is safe, and safer than many medications currently available OTC. No one credibly doubts the dozens of studies showing that early use of HCQ, pre-exposure and immediately after exposure to COVID, has helped many overcome this dreaded disease.

Americans do not need a prescription to obtain hundreds of medications which once required a prescription. Nexium, Prevacid, Prilosec, Claritin, Flonase, and Primatene Mist are medications that have been shifted from Rx to OTC in recent years, not because the medical establishment pushed for the change, but because of public demand for it.

No demand is higher at this time than for a medication which helps prevent against COVID. Yet Americans are not being allowed to access the medication which they want and need, and instead are being told by FDA and state officials that they cannot have it.

Last month the Oregon pharmacy board, for example, blocked HCQ access as follows: “Prescription orders for chloroquine or hydroxychloroquine for the prevention or treatment of COVID-19 infection may only be dispensed if written for a patient enrolled in a clinical trial by an authorized investigator.”

They based their ban on an improper statement issued by FDA, which is controlled by opponents of Trump’s reelection. Of course, many government officials in Oregon are against Trump, too.

Every state board of pharmacy or medicine is controlled by left-leaning government workers who, by and large, despise President Trump and hope he loses in November. They are accomplishing their dream by choking off public access to HCQ.

In other countries, such as Costa Rica and Honduras, HCQ is being given freely to the public to successfully defeat coronavirus there. In some countries officials are even going door-to-door distributing HCQ to build up protection against the virus, with great success.

The mortality rate from COVID-19 in the United States is far higher per case, and per million of residents, despite how we have the finest hospital system in the world. We don’t currently have public access to HCQ to protect against the disease, however, and that is what is needed at this time.

An executive order by President Trump, through use of his full emergency authority, could give Americans the same rights to HCQ for COVID which some of the poorest people in the world enjoy. Trump could even dispense HCQ at his rallies, which would both restore their massive numbers and help safeguard against spread of the virus.

But the medical establishment, such as Dr. John Fleming who is advising Trump’s Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, is impeding this solution to the crisis. As a physician, Dr. Fleming is instinctively trained to oppose OTC status for most medications, and he is beholden to the mindset of requiring people to see physicians first.

Americans are accustomed to being advised to consult a physician before starting a weight-loss plan, an attorney before writing a will, and an accountant before filing a tax return. In ideal situations, recommending use of a professional is non-controversial.

When there is a crisis, however, the dynamic is different. When thousands are dying unnecessarily, and millions are paralyzed by fear, directly alleviating that mortality and fear becomes paramount.

There is no valid reason to deny public access to low-dose HCQ, which studies show can protect against COVID, just as there is no legitimate reason to require a prescription for low-dose steroid cream (Cortisone) and many other over-the-counter medications. The political motivation to block access to HCQ justifies making it publicly available.

This is not a decision for Anthony Fauci or the medical establishment or FDA to make during a national crisis. This is for President Trump to decide, and make HCQ available quickly to the public.

If an intruder is discovered in one’s home in the middle of the night, no responsible father tries first to call an expert to get an opinion about what to do. Instead, quick and decisive action is taken, and that means OTC status for HCQ to conquer COVID.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work. These columns are also posted on pseagles.com.

Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Anti-Trump Book Channels Farcical Faulkner

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

The latest fake news to come after President Donald Trump is a book by his Hillary Clinton-supporting niece, Mary L. Trump, to be released on July 14. It should be sold as fiction because it apparently channels the made-up Compson family of William Faulkner’s novels.

The Washington Post reported that the initial listing of this book concealed Mary Trump’s name by saying it was written by Mary “Compson,” and Mary even used the name “Compson Enterprises” for the company she created. The Post also found that as a student Mary was engrossed in Faulkner’s novels, which portray the Compson family as having immigrated from Scotland just as Trump’s mother did.

William Faulkner was a liberal icon imposed on many of us in high school and college, despite how few students could make sense of his stream-of-consciousness writings. Faulkner was an obscure writer until he was put on the map by a surprise award of the Nobel Prize for Literature, an honor never bestowed on conservatives.

Faulkner wrote novels about the rural South, often in stereotypical language that would be considered offensive today. His fictional characters frequently used the N-word, and if the Left were consistent about tearing down monuments they would be demanding expulsion of Faulkner from schools, too.

The liberal-controlled Pulitzer Prizes honored him not just once but twice for his writings, and he doubly won the prestigious National Book Award, too. Like other favored liberal authors of the last century, Faulkner has been a mainstay of the academic elite who are not anxious to admit their errors.

Princeton University recently scrubbed the name of Woodrow Wilson from its campus buildings and programs, even though Wilson had been Princeton’s president before being elected twice as president of the United States. But English departments are notably more liberal and less willing to drop sacred cows like Faulkner down the memory hole.

Unless the author is Shakespeare, of course, who has been a target of the cultural destroyers for years. Or the movie Gone With the Wind, which is being censored despite never using the N-word which Faulkner used so copiously.

Faulkner’s favorite fictional family, the Compsons, was as dysfunctional as imaginable. As the leftwing Daily Beast observed, the Compsons were “a clan plagued by alcoholism, depression, suicide, hypochondria, teen-age pregnancy, and incestuous urges.”

Few Faulkner readers would take the Compson name and adopt it as their own, or draw inspiration from such fiction to smear a president of the United States. But there is big money to be made in fake news, particularly when the presidential election is less than four months away.

Mary L. Trump had been publicly silent about our president throughout his tenure in office, and her book appears timed to exploit the publicity of her uncle’s reelection campaign. It is hardly credible that all of a sudden this disgruntled family member, long estranged from Donald, has something fair to say about him.

The book complains that her grandfather Fred Trump Sr. shouted in front of employees that “Donald is worth ten of” her own father, Fred Jr. It is hardly Donald’s fault if his father spoke of him more highly than his older brother, and no one doubts that Donald was more successful in continuing his father’s real estate business.

Mary L. Trump, a psychologist in New York City, is as biased a relative as anyone could be. She felt shortchanged by a family property settlement after bitter litigation, and she is politically opposed to Trump, too.

Mary’s father Fred Jr. died from an alcohol-related heart attack after becoming an airline pilot. Donald Trump has frequently spoken graciously of Mary’s father in a caring and sympathetic way, while noting that his brother’s tragic fate motivated Donald not to drink alcohol.

While Trump has spoken highly of his relatives, including Mary’s father, the media desperately gives a platform to those who want to criticize our president. The media’s promotion of a fiction-based book by a disgruntled relative is beyond the pale.

This was a bit much even for the Daily Beast, a website that has long been opposed to Donald Trump. That website wondered about this book on Trump as written by someone who apparently views herself and her famous relatives to be characters in a work of fiction.

Why not simply read Faulkner’s famous novel itself, if you have time to waste, instead of trying to retrofit Faulkner’s fiction into the life of President Trump? the Daily Beast implied. On that point many can agree.

But then, nothing about President Trump fits the “Southern Gothic” narrative of a Faulkner novel. Trump grew up in multicultural Queens, made his mark as a builder in diverse New York City, and his approval rating among black voters has been comparable to that of other Republican presidents.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work. These columns are also posted on pseagles.com.

Tuesday, June 30, 2020

Unmasking the COVID Fear Factor

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

As the media sound alarm bells about a possible second wave of COVID, we should firmly reject another nationwide economic shutdown enforced by stay-home orders and mandatory masks. Republicans need an approach that gets Americans back to attending church, Trump rallies, and in-person voting at local polling places.

Forcing everyone to wear a mask, even while jogging or boating, will do nothing to conquer the virus or restore public confidence. Sending the expensive new intravenous drug Remdesivir to hospitals, for COVID patients on their deathbed, will do nothing to calm public fears.

President Trump should turn instead to the approach which liberals fear and oppose the most: making hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) widely available to the American people. Trump may not realize that the medication which he took in May to successfully protect himself against COVID-19 is still inaccessible to most Americans.

A recent compilation of 50 studies of HCQ shows that it is effective as a prophylaxis and as early treatment, but less effective when used late in the course of the disease. This is similar to other anti-virals, such as Tamiflu, which are best given within 24 or 48 hours of first exposure to influenza.

Prophylaxis (or prophylactic) means using a medication to keep from getting sick or to minimize symptoms if you do get sick. Yet Americans are prevented from obtaining HCQ within a few days of exposure to the virus, before they develop symptoms or soon after.

A survey conducted this week by the Association of American Physicians & Surgeons yielded scores of responses by physicians about how their patients cannot obtain HCQ. Lives continue to be lost by denial of this inexpensive, safe medication to the public.

Based on impediments by liberal regulators, all but four small states have blocked the ability of Americans to obtain treatment by HCQ soon after exposure to COVID-19. Virtually nowhere can Americans, even health care workers on the front lines, obtain HCQ as a prophylaxis as Trump took for himself.

Indeed, most world leaders have taken HCQ as a prophylaxis to protect against COVID-19, according to the president of El Salvador as quoted by CNN. And millions of ordinary folks in many foreign countries now have early access to this medication, which is helping conquer the virus outside of the United States.

South Korea was hit early and hard by the Wuhan virus, but that conservative country made HCQ widely available and held its mortality down to only 2.3% per case and 6 per million in its overall population. Contrast that with the deprivation of HCQ from Americans, where the mortality per reported case is 4.8%, and 390 per million at large.

During a presidential election in which voter turnout depends on access to medication that protects against an infectious disease, Trump should not be beholden to biased advice by opponents of his reelection. Yet Never-Trumpers have so far pulled off one of the greatest election-year scams in American history.

Trump supporters did not vote for Anthony Fauci, whose emails gushing praise for Hillary Clinton were published by Wikileaks in 2016. But Dr. Fauci has dictated the most important policy decisions by the Trump Administration in 2020, with disastrous results for the American people and Republicans in November.

Contrast the interference with ordinary Americans’ access to HCQ with the successful response to COVID-19 elsewhere. Russia, India, Israel, and Turkey have all used HCQ to keep their mortality rate from the disease an average of half below ours, and their death rate below 70 per million which is less than one-fifth of the death rate in our overall population.

Sports fans would eagerly take HCQ to attend games and root for their favorite teams, and churchgoers would do likewise. As adults making decisions to protect their own health as they do every day in other contexts, Americans should be allowed to do so for COVID-19.

Everyone who has an allergy, diabetes, asthma, or other affliction knows the fear factor that results from lack of access to immediate treatment if needed. Without access to HCQ, many Americans will not be going to football games, Trump rallies, church, or even polling booths.

Peter Navarro observed how the Deep State has been sabotaging Trump’s reelection by blocking HCQ. He told the New York Times that this “is a Deep State blindside by bureaucrats who hate the administration they work for more than they’re concerned about saving American lives.”

It’s time for others in the Trump Administration to admit that Navarro was right, and make HCQ available immediately to all the American people, not just the well-connected few. Allowing a climate of fear to continue whereby Americans will not even attend church, let alone vote, is unhealthy for our country and unfair to Trump.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work. These columns are also posted on pseagles.com.

Tuesday, June 23, 2020

Removing Statues, to Smear America

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

Americans first watched in horror as mobs of anarchists seized the streets of our major cities, breaking windows, setting fires, and looting stores. Then they began pulling down statues that had stood for decades, or in many cases, more than a century.

The real targets of the violent Leftists are not George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, and Teddy Roosevelt, whose faces are carved into Mount Rushmore. Rather, the goal is to discredit America itself by smearing those who gave us the freedom and prosperity we enjoy today.

Local police in Democrat-controlled cities have mostly stood and watched silently, neither stopping the destruction nor arresting and charging those responsible. At the White House, President Trump reacted on Twitter, promising to restore order if local officials fail.

The restraint by our president came to an end last night when a mob reached Lafayette Square in front of the White House. Cheered by onlookers who broke through a chain link fence, a small group of men tied ropes around the massive bronze figure of our 7th president, Andrew Jackson, mounted on a horse at the center of the park.

United States Park Police arrived at the scene to disperse the unruly crowd mere moments before the vandals would have toppled the 15-ton statue, though not before it was defaced with ugly words like “Killer Scum” that will be costly to remove. It is unlikely that the vandals had any appreciation for what Jackson achieved and stood for.

Andrew Jackson was perhaps the most influential American between the founding of our nation and the Civil War, who more than anyone else defined the scope of presidential power. He was also the first president to represent the common man, triumphing over the elite of his day, and voluntarily retired after two terms when he could have won reelection repeatedly.

“Last night, we stopped an attack on a great monument,” Mr. Trump told reporters the next morning. “I just want to thank law enforcement. Numerous people are in jail and are going to jail today.”

Aside from the character of the man it commemorates, the Jackson statue is remarkable in itself as an important work of art. It was the first bronze statue cast in the United States, and the first equestrian statue in which the horse is balanced on its two hind legs.

“We are looking at long-term jail sentences for these vandals and these hoodlums. They’re bad people, and they’re not taking down our monuments.”

What a difference from last Friday, when a mob succeeded in toppling and burning a statue of a Masonic leader, Albert Pike, in Washington’s Judiciary Square. The statue of Pike had been erected in 1901 with the approval of Congress after a nationwide fundraising campaign by the Masons.

Some weak Republicans have sought compromise with the radical anarchists by evicting Confederate statues from public spaces. But what about Arlington National Cemetery, where America’s honored dead are buried?

Arlington sits on the 1,100-acre estate once owned by the Virginian Robert E. Lee and his wife, who inherited the property from Washington’s adopted grandson, George Washington Custis. Some 400,000 American heroes rest in peace there under the silent watch of the now-empty Custis-Lee Mansion.

The ongoing attacks on statues has little to do with the Confederacy, as the vandals are just as resentful of most of the men in American history. The mob has attacked statues of patriots who fought for our country under the Stars and Stripes, including Presidents Ulysses S. Grant and Teddy Roosevelt.

The mob continued to depose statues of other great historical figures, including Francis Scott Key, author of our national anthem; Father Junipero Serra, the humble Franciscan friar who brought Christianity to California; and Christopher Columbus, who started it all in 1492. The orgy of destruction culminated last week with the toppling of a statue of George Washington by protesters in Portland, Oregon.

The victims of this outbreak of anarchism were not promoters of slavery. Teddy Roosevelt, for example, was born in New York City merely two years before the Civil War started, but Democrats have agreed to remove a remarkable statue of him outside its famed American Museum of Natural History.

Thomas Jefferson, meanwhile, was the man who penned the revolutionary phrase “all men are created equal” in our Declaration of Independence. Jefferson’s words were instrumental in ending slavery.

Ironically, it was white Leftists in Portland, Oregon who used an ax to tear down a statue of Jefferson. Portland is one of the least diverse cities in the nation, and yet wants to accuse great Americans of racism.

This is not really about a sculpture or monument, of course. It is an attempt to make America the object of scorn, while denying credit to those who made America great.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work. These columns are also posted on pseagles.com.

Tuesday, June 16, 2020

Judicial Supremacy Bites Again

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

What took Justice Antonin Scalia decades to build as a doctrine of textualism, his self-described heir Neil Gorsuch burned down in one decision on Monday. Applauded by the liberal media, his incoherent opinion throws federal courts into the middle of the culture war over transgenderism.

Justice Scalia could be rolling over in his grave at this demolition of the house that he so painstakingly built. This 6-3 decision in Bostock v. Clayton County granted a broad new right of transgenders and homosexuals to sue their employers in federal court.

Congress never intended to create special employment rights for transgenders and homosexuals when it enacted Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The text of the statute is crystal clear in protecting against only historical kinds of discrimination.

“But the limits of the drafters’ imagination supply no reason to ignore the law’s demands,” Gorsuch bizarrely wrote for the 6-3 court in creating privileges for transgenders and homosexuals to sue employers. By reinterpreting a statute beyond its drafters’ imagination, Gorsuch implicitly mocks textualism and originalism which have been the hallmark of conservative jurisprudence.

Instead, the court again falls for the bankrupt approach of legislating from the bench, as demanded by liberal culture. This abandons the role of a judge as a neutral umpire, to which Chief Justice John Roberts pledged fealty during his confirmation hearings but did otherwise by joining this activist decision.

To be confirmed, Roberts echoed the view of Phyllis Schlafly who had written about how Supreme Court justices should behave like umpires rather than legislate from the bench. She never thought we had a conservative court, as Roberts disappoints again.

Like scraping nails across a blackboard, Gorsuch even quoted Justice Scalia twice in an attempt to maintain a fa├žade of adherence to what Gorsuch promised when he was nominated. That is as discordant as an off-key performance by an amateur without permission by the songwriter.

Three justices in dissent dismantled the majority opinion. The dissenters could have gone further and echoed Scalia’s “hide my head in a bag” comment about the embarrassment of the same-sex marriage opinion by Justice Anthony Kennedy, which read like a “fortune cookie” rather than legal reasoning.

“There is only one word for what the Court has done today: legislation,” began Justice Sam Alito’s dissent on Monday. “The document that the Court releases is in the form of a judicial opinion interpreting a statute, but that is deceptive,” he continued.

Properly quoting Scalia, Justice Alito wrote that “our duty is to interpret statutory terms to ‘mean what they conveyed to reasonable people at the time they were written.’” Title VII certainly did not mean at the time it was enacted to give special rights to transgenders and homosexuals.

The dissents, including the one written by Trump-appointed Brett Kavanaugh, are logical in contrast with the pandering to the liberal elite permeating the majority opinion. Justice Elena Kagan’s distorted view of textualism at oral argument made it into the opinion, which suggests that she was the ventriloquist for Gorsuch.

Together they began their opinion by posing the deceptive question of “whether an employer can fire someone simply for being homosexual or transgender.” That is not a proper question for a federal court to ask, which is limited in authority by federal laws, and it was improper for the Court then to answer its own misleading question.

The phony question incorrectly implies that federal courts can and should create new rights whenever a handful of unelected justices want to do so. They should have asked whether Congress has commanded the federal judiciary to recognize special rights for transgenders and homosexuals to sue in federal court, which of course it has not.

When Roe v. Wade was decided in 1973, delusional liberals thought that it settled the issue of abortion once and for all. Instead, it converted the judiciary into a political football and caused confirmation hearings to become theaters of the absurd.

Now unelected justices tell Americans that the Court has decided the cultural war concerning special rights for transgenders, so everyone should just accept this elitist teaching and fall in line. But the opposite will occur, as the Court creates unresolved issues about transgenders in school and sports, where girls are harmed by unfair competition from biological males.

On the same day that the Court rendered its decision giving extraordinary priority to cultural liberals, the Court denied ten petitions by Americans who have had their Second Amendment rights infringed. Rights that are actually in the Constitution, like the right to bear arms, are not as important to liberals on the Supreme Court.

The Court also refused to review California’s statewide sanctuary law, which prohibits cooperation with federal immigration authorities. This Court is a far cry from anything that is conservative.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work. These columns are also posted on pseagles.com.

Tuesday, June 9, 2020

How Rioting Ended the Shutdown

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

After a second full week of mass demonstrations, protests, riots and civil disorders in over 30 cities, many law-abiding Americans are wondering why we were forced to comply with stay-home orders. Tens of thousands of people have congregated in confined public spaces for the last two weeks, many of them not wearing masks except to avoid being captured on video while they were looting stores or setting buildings on fire.

Whatever happened to the dire warnings of death and disease if ordinary people ventured outside to meet each other in restaurants, bars, and sporting events? Despite massive crowds filling the streets of our major cities, there is no evidence of any spike in cases of people getting sick from COVID-19.

Churches remain closed, unless they limit attendance to 25 people or 25% of capacity and require worshippers to wear masks and stay 6 feet apart from each other. No similar limits or restrictions have been imposed on street protesters, demonstrators, rioters and looters.

Dr. Fauci, Dr. Birx, and other familiar experts from the CDC are suddenly nowhere to be found. In their place, “1,288 public health professionals, infectious diseases professionals, and community stakeholders” published a statement declaring that “white supremacy is a lethal public health issue.”

“Protests against systemic racism must be supported,” even if not done safely, the 1,288 public health professionals wrote in their widely circulated manifesto. “Our first statement must be one of unwavering support for those who would dismantle, uproot, or reform racist institutions.”

“This should not be confused with a permissive stance on all gatherings, particularly protests against stay-home orders” like those who peacefully gathered outside the Michigan State Capitol last month, the experts continued. Those peaceful protests, the experts agreed, were “rooted in white nationalism and run contrary to respect for Black lives.”

One of the peaceful Michigan protesters was Karl Manke, a 77-year-old barber in Owosso, a town of 15,000 people in central Michigan. A judge in Michigan’s Shiawassee County issued an order that Manke’s barber shop “shall be locked and closed,” and agents from the state attorney general’s office showed up in Owosso to enforce the order.

Manke appealed that decision to the Michigan Supreme Court, which summarily overturned it last Friday. The order shutting Manke’s barber shop without full briefing and argument was “extraordinary” and “inexplicable,” Justice David Viviano wrote.

“Courts decide legal questions according to the rule of law,” Justice Viviano continued. “One hopes that this great principle -- essential to any free society, including ours -- will not itself become yet another casualty of COVID-19.”

In Altamahaw, North Carolina, population 347, Ace Speedway was the scene of stock-car racing last weekend for over 2,000 spectators. The crowd that half-filled the 5,000-seat bleachers was far in excess of the 25-person limit imposed by Democratic Governor Roy Cooper, whose antics are preventing the Republican Convention from meeting in Charlotte in late August.

A sign outside the speedway advertised: “This Event is held in Peaceful Protest of Injustice and Inequality Everywhere.” The Alamance County Sheriff refused to issue a citation because, he said, “my citizens have basically been singled out for the same alleged violations that are occurring all over the State of North Carolina.”

One after another, so-called experts on public health have been proven wrong and forced to revise their earlier statements. The latest about-face comes from the discredited World Health Organization (WHO) which admitted on Monday that it is actually “very rare” to catch COVID-19 from an asymptomatic carrier -- someone who is not coughing or sneezing droplets into the air.

“We have a number of reports from countries who are doing very detailed contact tracing,” the WHO spokesman explained. “They’re following asymptomatic cases, they’re following contacts and they’re not finding secondary transmission onward.”

That contradicts the main reason that was given to justify the nationwide shutdown of our economy: fear of infection from people who do not appear to be sick. In the immortal words of Gilda Radner, who was a regular on Saturday Night Live in the 1970s, “Never mind!”

The two most distinguished medical journals in the world are The Lancet, which is based in England, and The New England Journal of Medicine. Last week both journals were forced to retract studies purporting to show that hydroxychloroquine, the same drug that President Trump took (in combination with zinc) to prevent COVID-19, was not only useless but harmful, and even resulted in death.

Both studies claimed to rely on data from many countries around the world, but when suspicious researchers asked to see the raw data, the authors refused to reveal it. These leading medical journals rushed into print with articles that were obviously intended to embarrass President Trump.

Although hydroxychloroquine is approved for off-label use to treat and prevent COVID-19, a number of federal and state restrictions have made it hard to get, even with a doctor’s prescription. Over 35 states have limited its availability, and five states have rules that prohibit doctors from prescribing the drug as a preventive measure.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work. These columns are also posted on pseagles.com.

Tuesday, June 2, 2020

Whatever Happened to Social Distancing?

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

For 10 weeks, law-abiding Americans submitted to the demands of so-called experts to maintain a 6-foot distance from our friends, relatives, and fellow human beings. That meant familiar gathering places such as restaurants, bars, hotels, and sports arenas had to close and remain closed indefinitely, causing economic hardship to millions.

When a few hundred law-abiding citizens, some lawfully carrying their personal weapons, marched in front of the Michigan state capitol to protest the nation’s most extreme stay-at-home order, liberals feigned outrage.

The “mask police” demanded that all Americans don intrusive face-coverings in public, supposedly to prevent the spread of COVID-19. The House of Representatives has switched to proxy voting despite its unconstitutionality, and Republicans have sued to stop this erosion of safeguards against improper procedures in Congress.

With citizens who respect the law stuck at home under lockdown orders by Democratic governors, the lawless seized the streets. Mobs of thousands of militants, many armed with crowbars, fire starters and other dangerous weapons, rampaged the darkened streets in search of soft targets to loot, burn and pillage in a senseless orgy of destruction.

The violent chaos is the tragedy that results from the absence of an armed citizenry, by which merchants defend their shops with their own lawful firearms. When a black professional basketball player saw his truck being vandalized by a protester in his residential neighborhood, the 6-foot, 6-inch, 225-pound athlete rushed out and beat up the vandal.

But we are not all as strong as giants who play in the NBA, and many of us rely on local police, sheriffs and mayors to protect our private property against lawlessness. The state governor, state police, and the national guard are there to be called in as needed to restore order.

Yet in city after city, all led by weak Democratic mayors, the police stood by while the life savings (and in some cases, the lives) of ordinary citizens went up in smoke. A police station was burned to the ground in Minneapolis and a federal law enforcement officer was shot and killed in Oakland.

The insurrection that has spread to more than 30 cities is fueled by socialists and anarchists who oppose President Trump and the Republican Party. This rebellion is built on three-and-a-half years during which elites in the liberal media and Democrats in Congress, who refuse to condemn the violence, ranted against our president.

The handful of giant companies that control our channels of communication have found profit in fomenting strife and division among the various groups that make up our body politic. Only last week the opulent high tech industry, which evades the brunt of the protests, used its monopoly power to essentially censor the president’s words on Twitter.

Twitter’s disparagement of President Trump by labeling his tweets would be comical if it were not so dangerous as politically motivated censorship. As a monopoly service provider, Twitter should not be allowed to regulate the statements of a political candidate to the advantage of his opponent in a contested election.

Decades ago, when the broadcast networks dominated politics, Congress passed a law to forbid network television from rejecting political ads based on their content. Another law established the Fairness Doctrine which required broadcast television and radio to present both sides of controversial issues of public importance.

Twitter, Google (which owns YouTube), Facebook (which owns Instagram), and other Big Tech companies enjoy monopoly power and immense wealth due to regulatory advantages conferred on them by government. They do not pay the real costs of the traffic that they attract, from which they profit, and they should not be picking sides in political discourse by placing derogatory labels on postings by political candidates.

Twitter gets its internet traffic without paying a dime for it. This free-riding by Twitter, Google and Facebook enable them to punish viewpoints they disfavor, in demeaning and sometimes secretive ways.

If Twitter had to pay its costs as radio stations do, it would be begging for a content-provider such as President Trump to post on its service and thereby attract other users and customers. Twitter would become more like talk radio, where robust competition to attract listeners results in less censorship, not more.

Google, meanwhile, uses secret algorithms that provide greater visibility to liberal websites and YouTube videos, while suppressing conservative views. According to a lawsuit in England, this is one way that Google uses its market power to choke off competition.

A court there has told Google either to produce its search engine algorithm by which it ranks websites in response to searches, or drop its defense to a lawsuit. The Trump Administration need not wait for a British court to compel transparency by the American behemoth, and the Federal Communications Commission should order Big Tech to disclose more than it has.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work. These columns are also posted on pseagles.com.

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

The Folly of Vote-by-Mail for All

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

The extended national lockdown caused by the coronavirus has led to many ideas for changing familiar patterns of the American way of life. But COVID-19 is no excuse for undermining the integrity of our presidential elections by switching from in-person to mail-in voting.

Until a few years ago, Election Day was a special event in which our sprawling nation came together on the same day to select our next president. Some states honor it with a holiday, and many employers give workers time off to vote.

Barely five months before the most important presidential election of our lifetime, with the Supreme Court on the line, is no time to convert the election machinery of more than 100,000 election precincts to an unprecedented, untested system of any kind. Yet Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer seeks to send absentee ballot applications to 7.7 million people on an error-ridden list of potential voters.

As President Trump rightly tweeted in response, “This was done illegally and without authorization. I will ask to hold up funding to Michigan if they want to go down this Voter Fraud path!”

California Governor Gavin Newsom is taking Michigan’s mistake one step further. He issued an executive order to mail not just an application, but the actual ballot to the state’s entire voter registration list riddled with inaccuracies.

No state has ever done that before, including the five states that conduct mail elections, because it invites voting by people who are not eligible to vote. Voter intimidation, coercion, fraud, and other forms of illegitimate voting would be possible under blanket mail-in voting.

A new federal lawsuit has been filed to block Governor Newsom’s scheme. “Fraudulent and invalid votes dilute the votes of honest citizens and deprive them of their right to vote in violation of the Fourteenth Amendment,” it says.

Until now, only five states mail unrequested ballots to registered voters, but those states take additional precautions such as requiring verification of voter registrations. None of the five is a swing or battleground state whose electoral vote for president is in doubt.

All other states allow some form of absentee voting, and most of those permit limited mail-in voting for those who request it. States can more easily manage the integrity of a small number of mail-in ballots compared with being overwhelmed by everyone, even illegal aliens, voting by mail.

The costs are staggering, and states ask Congress to force taxpayers to foot the bill for this folly. Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi already allocated $400 million in the CARES Act as handouts to states for mail-in voting, but that is not nearly enough.

The last presidential election had more than 128 million votes cast, and tens of dollars per mail-in ballot in new costs would be needed for sending and processing them. Democrats want $4 billion in new federal funding to pay for mail-in voting now.

Democrats even want unions to be allowed to collect ballots, but that would add unwanted intimidation of voters to the process. Unionized workers should be free from union coercion when they mark their ballots.

Allowing votes to be mailed until Election Day means that counting ballots and declaring a winner may not occur until weeks later. The post office can take up to ten days to deliver a letter, particularly amid high volume, and in a close election the outcome could change when ballots are lost in the mail.

Our political prosperity depends on the smooth transition of power. It is essential that there be a prompt, legitimate presidential winner, but close elections awash in mailed ballots would frustrate that essential goal.

In the key swing state of Pennsylvania, mail-in voting is being adopted for the first time this year, with restrictions. Ballots must be received, not merely mailed, by Election Day, because many letters are not postmarked anymore.

Ballot harvesting is not allowed in Pennsylvania, which is the pernicious practice of paid workers mailing a bundle of ballots supposedly cast by others. Millions of demented nursing home patients can have their “votes” harvested in this manner for the unfair advantage of a candidate funding the harvesting.

Democrats pretend that voter fraud would be small for mail-in voting, but they do not consider ballot harvesting and other chicanery to be fraud. A generation ago, they did not consider the corrupt Democratic political machine in Chicago to be fraudulent, either.

Supporters of mail-in voting rely on polling which seems to indicate public support for it. But those polling questions avoid mention of the immense additional costs and the susceptibility of mail-in voting to manipulation and corruption.

President Trump is right to oppose this attempt by Democrats to change our election system. Federal funds should be withheld from states that undermine our elections as Democrats are trying to do.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work. These columns are also posted on pseagles.com.

Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Contact Tracing? No Thanks.

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

First a Dallas hair salon owner was imprisoned for opening her store to earn a living. Next Texas has signed a $295 million contract for “contact tracing,” by which law-abiding citizens will have to submit to monitoring about when, where, and with whom they have been.

While this sounds like a dark episode in the history of the communist Soviet Union or China, it is being promoted by Democratic governors today on a massive scale never accepted in the United States. It even extends into liberty-conscious conservative Texas.

Rep. Andy Biggs (R-AZ), the Chairman of the conservative Freedom Caucus, pointed out on the floor of the House that contact tracing would “allow big tech companies to surveil” citizens and “then turn that accumulated information over to the government.” Republican state legislators and Rudy Giuliani have likewise criticized the proposals for vast contact tracing.

Yet Republican Governor Greg Abbott, ambitious to run for president in 2024, is imposing government tracking and monitoring of Texans under the pretense of combating coronavirus. He could conquer the virus by lifting unjustified restrictions on access to hydroxychloroquine (HCQ), but instead wants to find out who and where lawful Texans privately visited.

Far from helping society return to normal activities, contact tracing would terrify everyone into staying at home even more than they have already been. Everyone would have to think twice about whether a visit to someone might end up in a government database, or result in a mandatory unwanted 14-day quarantine.

This would also encourage more people to snitch on their neighbors, reporting on their daily movements. The society of narcs sought by liberals would grow worse under widespread contact tracing, even if promoted as merely being voluntary.

Lying to government agents is a crime in many jurisdictions, so those who are accosted by a contact tracer but do not disclose every person they visited in the last week could be prosecuted. Then citizens would face conviction for protecting people whom they do not want to be harassed by a visit from a contact tracer, who might himself be spreading the virus.

Contact tracing is an approach supported by George Soros, the billionaire Leftist who has been funding numerous liberal causes. He has donated heavily for open borders, which exacerbates the spread of unwanted viruses in the United States.

The real goal of the contact tracing is to use COVID-19 as a pretext to monitor the whereabouts of every American, perhaps through our smartphones, and take away our liberties. Republican political candidates will be tracked and leaks of their private information to the media would be inevitable under this scheme, while Democrats such as Joe Biden are given a pass on their far greater misconduct.

Child Protective Services bullies will be authorized to take children away from parents who have COVID-19, or who have been in contact with anyone who might have the virus. Contact tracing means that a visit to your home by a neighbor who later tests positive for the virus could result in the forced quarantining of you for merely having opened your front door to him.

Texas Gov. Abbott’s contract is with a federally funded contact tracing firm, MTX Group, about which he failed to consult the conservative Texas legislature before obligating the state. MTX Group will soon have a staff of 4,000 employees in Texas, including case investigators, epidemiologists, and contact tracers.

Meanwhile, regulators in Texas and other states continue to block access by residents to HCQ, the same medication which President Trump has successfully taken for more than a week to protect against COVID-19. In most states, including Texas, Trump would not have been able to fill his doctor’s prescription for this medication due to liberal interference.

The FDA, as misled by the pro-vaccine bureaucrat Rick Bright, Ph.D., continues to prohibit any use of the federal stockpile of 100 million doses of HCQ unless the patient is first hospitalized and a clinical trial is unavailable. President Trump’s successful use of this medication would not be permitted from the stockpile maintained under these senseless FDA regulations imposed by anti-Trump bureaucrats.

The conservative, can-do approach is to conquer a virus by treating it early and in a preventive manner, while the defeatist liberal approach is to ration resources while asserting government control over law-abiding residents. Gov. Abbott could follow the successful example of Republican Gov. DeSantis in Florida, who made HCQ available and kept businesses and beaches largely open.

Gov. Abbott has instead sharply restricted access to HCQ and closed businesses for prolonged periods, resulting in the imprisonment of a salon owner. The $295 million that Abbott is spending on contact tracing could have purchased HCQ treatments for half of the entire State of Texas, to reopen the state without the need for oppressive monitoring.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work. These columns are also posted on pseagles.com.

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

Restart Sports Without Gambling

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

The shutdown of professional sports due to the Wuhan virus has exposed the increasing billions of dollars being wagered on these games, and the heightened dependency of state governments on revenue from this formerly illicit activity. When the NCAA cancelled March Madness, the annual college basketball tournament, states addicted to sports gambling lost millions of dollars in revenue from taxes on the betting.

Many were astounded when 15.6 million recently watched the first day of the NFL draft, a tedious event previously interesting only to diehard fans. But the audience this year was boosted by famished gamblers who wagered on which college students would be picked, and when.

That is a pathetic way to spend the family nest egg, or waste one’s time. Yet sports betting has mushroomed to tens of billions of dollars, particularly since the Murphy v. NCAA ruling by the Supreme Court in 2018 allowed states to ramp up sports gambling.

Legalized sports gambling then quickly spread to a total of 18 states, and just as quickly they are becoming hostage to the tax revenue it generates. With professional sports shut down due to COVID-19, state governments have lost this revenue while their residents save money.

There has been no local or state tax revenue from casinos since they were shut down nationwide, to the dismay of their owners including Indian tribes. Their losses benefit casino victims, including many American Indians and every other demographic group.

Democratic politicians complain about how the rich get richer even now, but sports and casino gambling constitute one of the biggest drivers of wealth inequality. Billionaire owner Mark Cuban estimated that the Supreme Court ruling authorizing sports gambling immediately doubled the value of franchises in the top four professional sports leagues.

Sports competitions should restart, as athletes are most able to overcome the Wuhan virus. But we can do without the smoke-filled casinos infecting the less healthy and the integrity of the games.

Democrat-controlled Las Vegas announced that it will reopen its casinos, despite how Democrats criticize Trump for seeking to reopen ordinary businesses. Apparently the concept of which businesses are essential is in the eye of the beholder.
Belarusian soccer and Ukrainian ping-pong are nearly the only professional sports which have carried on. This has left millions of Americans with little to bet on in sports.

This fall Las Vegas is set to be the new home for the Oakland Raiders as the NFL and other leagues embrace gambling and fantasy sports betting like never before. “Gaming management” seeks credibility by holding conferences at prestigious universities and offering accredited college degrees.

Sports bettors attended in March the MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference, which is a fancy name to legitimize the combination of two addictions: gambling and watching professional sports. Conference attendees enjoyed the cigar bar for a little rest and relaxation after a day of panel presentations.

But it turns out that COVID-19 was being spread at that cigar bar during the conference. According to Sports Illustrated, everyone who frequented the bar at that time contracted the virus.

Most recovered from the disease, but the shutdown of professional sports may have caused even worse symptoms for sports gambling addicts and states increasingly dependent on them. Desperate states may soon attempt to expand sports gambling as a way to try to make up for their lost revenue from legitimate businesses.

Democrat-controlled Colorado has now done just that. After heavy spending by gambling interests pushed through a referendum by a narrow 51-49% margin, regulators in that formerly conservative state made sports betting legal as of May 1st.

This was just in time for gambling interests to get “apps” into the state for the college and professional football seasons expected to begin in August, if the coronavirus crisis is over by then. Some NFL owners want to play without fans if necessary, and several taxpayer-supported stadiums had already been poorly attended even before the virus arrived.

The hypocrisy of owners of professional sports teams includes how they have harshly punished players who may have occasionally bet on games, while the owners themselves seek to profit from it. Baseball great "Shoeless" Joe Jackson, whom Babe Ruth imitated as the finest natural hitter he ever saw, was accused of gambling on the 1919 World Series but was acquitted in a court of law, and yet remains banished.

Some of the new state laws authorizing sports wagering allow owners to gamble in ways that players cannot. Meanwhile, states like Pennsylvania are imposing whopping taxes of 36% on revenue from sports gambling.

Professional sports should be reopened without the gambling, which most states recently allowed or seek to permit. The Department of Justice should fully enforce the Wire Act and other federal laws to end nationwide this exploitation of fans when seasons restart.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work. These columns are also posted on pseagles.com.