MCViewPoint

Opinion from a Libertarian ViewPoint

Posts Tagged ‘Rachel Levine’

The Trans Ploy: Rachel Levine and the Left’s Reality Subversion Trap – LewRockwell

Posted by M. C. on March 29, 2021

Emboldened by their success on the racism front, the left is attempting to subvert more and more obvious aspects of reality. They have become so audacious that they are now publicly challenging undeniable physical facts such as biological maleness and femaleness.

And here is where Dr. Levine comes in. While the left has been cultivating transgenderism for some years now, it was hitherto mostly on the periphery. The national level democrats had not dared to try to impose this agenda openly on the mainstream. But now – having been able to invert reality in other areas – they sense their chance.

https://www.lewrockwell.com/2021/03/vasko-kohlmayer/the-trans-ploy-rachel-levine-and-the-lefts-reality-subversion-trap/

By Vasko Kohlmayer

“Transgendered men do not become women, nor do transgendered women become men. All (including Bruce Jenner) become feminized men or masculinized women, counterfeits or impersonators of the sex with which they ‘identify.’”

– Dr. Paul McHugh, the distinguished professor of psychiatry at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine

A strange scene unfolded a few weeks ago on Capitol Hill. The setting was the confirmation hearing for the position of the US Assistant Secretary for Health.

The candidate put forth by the Biden administration was one Dr. Rachel Levine, who previously served as Secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Health.

The candidate, however, was not your run-of-the-mill physician. Levine is what these days is called a transgender “woman.” In other words, Levine is a biological male who says that he is a woman.

The hearing presented a sight that many people found unsettling. Those who tuned in would see Levine sitting in a citadel of American government dressed in a woman’s clothes wearing a wig and make-up. Anyone who looked more closely could immediately see that the person whose credentials were being examined by the senate committee was no woman, but a middle-aged, somewhat overweight man donning external paraphernalia of womanhood.

Dr. Rachel Levine who has been approved to be the US Assistant Secretary for Health. Dr. Levine is a biological male who says that he is now a woman.

Even a child could recognize the true sex of this person, because no amount of make-up, jewelry, female accessories or painted nails could cover up the obvious fact that Levine is a man. Born Richard Leland Levine, his maleness is encoded on the deepest level of his physical being. As is the case with all biological males, Levine’s cells carry genetic material that contains a pair of XY chromosomes which irreversibly establish his sex as male. As we have pointed out previously, it is not possible for anyone to traverse the biological gap that separates men and women.

Levine himself has, in fact, lived most of his life as a man. For many years he was married to a woman and in the course of his marriage he fathered two children.

And yet, contrary to the obvious physical reality before their eyes, the assembled senators at Levine’s confirmation hearing kept pretending that he is a woman.

By agreeing to behave in this manner, they had fallen into what could be called “The Left’s Reality-Inversion Trap.” Contrary to what some people may think, the left’s push of the transgender agenda is not some temporary embracing of a strange new fad but an essential expression of its modus operandi.

Because its ideology is based on lies, the left has to subvert people’s sense of reality in order to gain and maintain power. It is because of this that the left continually seeks to compel the public to agree to things that are not true. The further we go along this road, the greater the left’s prospects of success. This is the reason why every country where the left has managed to seize control has become a veritable twilight zone where everything goes topsy-turvy. In the communist country of my youth, we had to agree, among other things, that bondage was freedom and freedom was bondage. In that alternative reality the Soviet Union was the freest country on earth while the United States was the most oppressive. Nothing could be further from the truth, but we had to pretend that it was so. The interesting thing was that most people were aware of the truth, but they still went along with the lie. They did this because they were pressured to do so, and the cost of non-compliance could be quite steep.

As the crisis of American society intensifies, the left’s challenge to reality is becoming ever more brazen. Some eight months ago they began claiming in earnest that America is a racist country. This was a bald perversion of truth. The fact is that nowhere in the world are black people (as well as all the other minorities) given so much help, support and leeway as they are in the United States. In fact, American blacks are the most privileged minority in the history of the world. So much so that they enjoy more rights and privileges than the white majority. Just ask any university admissions department. Nevertheless, the lie of racism has gained wide acceptance especially among those of liberal persuasion. Their claims of systemic racism notwithstanding, social justice warriors have still not been able to point to one single racist policy, law, ordinance or rule – whether federal, state or local – in the United States. So complete is the dearth of evidence for their charge that they have been reduced to claiming that racism in America is actually hidden and unconscious. It is, of course, difficult to fight such invisible racism, but we can be sure, they say, that it exists. Your questioning of it is the very proof of its existence with you being the purveyor of this societal malady.

Emboldened by their success on the racism front, the left is attempting to subvert more and more obvious aspects of reality. They have become so audacious that they are now publicly challenging undeniable physical facts such as biological maleness and femaleness.

And here is where Dr. Levine comes in. While the left has been cultivating transgenderism for some years now, it was hitherto mostly on the periphery. The national level democrats had not dared to try to impose this agenda openly on the mainstream. But now – having been able to invert reality in other areas – they sense their chance. In one of his first acts as President, Joe Biden signed an executive order that forces schools to allow biological boys who identify as “girls” to compete with real girls in sports and use their locker rooms to boot. Shortly after loosening this in-your-face disruption of the natural order of things on the American people, the left plowed ahead with nominating a “transgender” individual for the position of the United States Assistant Secretary of Health.

The main objective behind this move was to desensitize American people to aberration and make it appear normal. What the left essentially did was to present a cross dressing man and say: “This is the woman we have nominated for this high federal post. And even though the candidate is obviously not a woman but a man, you are not allowed to say so.” Sadly, all senators on confirmation committee chose to ignore the proverbial elephant in the room and went along with the travesty. Not one of them asked Dr Levine about his curious attire and comportment. Such question would be completely appropriate in a forum whose objective was to assess the candidate’s suitability for the job. Good judgment is certainly an important qualification for such an important position, and one would have liked to hear what Dr Levine had to say on the obvious incongruity of the whole situation. As an intelligent person who is a Harvard- educated physician, he must know that gender dysphoria has been until very recently treated as a psychiatric condition and that the purpose of the treatment was to align the patients’ mind and thinking with the reality of his or her biological sex. This is clearly the wise and reasonable course of therapy given the poor prospects faced by transgender individuals. We have discussed earlier the negative outcomes and miseries that this lifestyle entails for the vast majority of those who fall victim to it. Also, one would like to hear Dr Levine’s view on the obvious physical impossibility of biological males becoming genuine women and vice versa. The game of pretend that transgender individuals are forced to play surely does not contribute to their psychological stability and emotional well-being. This is certainly part of the reason why depression is so widespread in the transgender community and why the attempted suicide rate there is nearly fifty percent.

We should not let leftists get away with their sabotage of reality and we need to call them out on their deceit. If we allow them to proceed with their lies, they will use their gains to destroy the structure of our society in the same way their brethren have done everywhere they have managed to seize complete power.

By way of update, the Senate voted last week to confirm Dr Levine as Assistant Secretary of Health. The vote went down almost entirely along the partisan lines. The Democrats all stood firmly behind the left’s agenda of reality subversion. However, forty-eight Republicans voted against the nomination. And even though most of those who opposed said they did so because of Levine’s advocacy of puberty blockers for young people suffering from gender dysphoria, one cannot but suspect Levine’s own transgenderism had something to do with the way they cast their vote. This means that they must have heard from their constituents who were disturbed by what they saw at the hearing. This is good news, since it shows that there are many people across this country who oppose the reality-denying excesses of the morally deranged left.

Be seeing you

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

Rand Paul vs. Rachel Levine: Do You Support Government Overriding Parental Consent On Puberty Blockers?

Posted by M. C. on February 26, 2021

https://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2021/02/25/rand_paul_vs_rachel_levine_do_you_support_government_overriding_parental_consent_on_puberty_blockers.html

Pennsylvania’s Finest

Posted By Ian Schwartz

Sen. Rand Paul took on Dr. Rachel Levine, President Biden’s nominee for assistant secretary of health, at Thursday’s confirmation hearing on genital mutilation and her position on government resources overriding parental consent on transgender medical methods such as puberty blockers.

“The question is a very specific one, should minors be making these momentous decisions,” Paul said. “For most of the history of medicine, we wouldn’t let you have a cut sewn up in the ER, but you are willing to let a minor take things that prevent their puberty, and you think they get that back.”

“You give a woman testosterone enough that she grows a beard, do you think she’s going to go back looking like a woman when you stop the testosterone? You have permanently changed them,” he said.

Levine responded to Paul’s questions with a standard response on how nuanced transgender medicine is.

“Transgender medicine is a very complex and nuanced field, and if confirmed to the position of assistant secretary of health, I would certainly be pleased to come to your office and to talk with you and your staff about the standards of care and the complexity of this field,” Levine said.

Levine, a transgender woman, was the Secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Health and managed the commonwealth’s COVID crisis.

SEN. RAND PAUL (R-KY): Genital mutilation has been nearly universally condemned. Genital mutilation has been condemned by the WHO, the United Nations Children’s Fund, the United Nations Population Fund. According to the WHO, genital mutilation is recognized internationally as a violation of human rights. Genital mutilation is considered particularly egregious, because as the WHO notes, it is nearly always carried out on minors and is a violation of the rights of children.

Most genital mutilation is not typically performed by force. But as WHO notes that by social convention, social norm, the social pressure to conform, to do what others do and have been doing as well as the need to be accepted socially and the fear of being rejected by the community.

American culture is down normalizing the idea that minors can be given hormones to prevent their biological development of their secondary sexual characteristics. Dr. Levine, you have supported both allowing minors to be given hormone blockers to prevent them from going through puberty, as well as surgical destruction of a minor’s genitalia.

Like surgical mutilation, hormonal interruption of puberty can permanently alter and prevent secondary sexual characteristics. The American College of Pediatricians reports that 80 to 95 percent of pre-pubertal children with gender dysphoria will experience resolution by late adolescence, if not exposed to medical intervention and social affirmation. Dr. Levine, do you believe that minors are capable of making such a life changing decision as changing one’s sex?

DR. RACHEL LEVINE: Well, Senator, thank you for your interest in this question. Transgender medicine is a very complex and nuanced field with robust research and standards of care that have been developed. And if I am fortunate enough to be confirmed as the assistant secretary of health, I will look forward to working with you and your office and coming to your office and discussing the particulars of the standards of care for transgender medicine.

PAUL: The specific question was about minors. Let’s be a little more specific since you evaded the question. Do you support the government intervening to override the parents’ consent to give a child puberty blockers, cross sex hormones, and/or amputation surgery of breasts and genitalia? You have said that you’re willing to accelerate the protocols for street kids. I’m alarmed that poor kids with no parents who are homeless and distraught, you would just go through this and allow that to happen to a minor.

I would hope that you would have compassion for Kira Belle (PH), who’s a 23 year old girl who was confused with her identity. At 14 she read on the Internet about something about transsexuals. She thought, well, maybe that’s what I am. She ended up getting these puberty blockers, cross sex hormones. She had her breasts amputated. But here’s what ultimately she says now. And this is a very insightful from decision from someone who made a mistake, but was led to believe this was a good thing by the medical community.

“I made a brash decision as a teenager, as a lot of teenagers do. Trying to find competence and happiness, except now the rest of my life will be negatively affected,” she said, adding that the medicalized gender transitioning was a very temporary, superficial fix for a very complex identity issue.

What I am alarmed that is that you are not willing to say absolutely minors shouldn’t be making decisions to amputate their breasts or to amputate their genitalia. For most of our history, we have believed that minors don’t have full rights and that parents need to be involved, so I am alarmed that you won’t say with certainty that minors should not have the ability to make the decision to take hormones that will affect them for the rest of their life. Will you make a more firm decision on whether or not minors should be involved in these decisions?

LEVINE: Senator, transgender medicine is a very complex and nuanced field, and if confirmed to the position of assistant secretary of health, I would certainly be pleased to come to your office and to talk with you and your staff about the standards of care and the complexity of this field.

PAUL: Let it go into the record that the witness refused to answer the question. The question is a very specific one, should minors be making these momentous decisions. For most of the history of medicine, we wouldn’t let you have a cut sewn up in the ER, but you are willing to let a minor take things that prevent their puberty, and you think they get that back.

You give a woman testosterone enough that she grows a beard, do you think she’s going to go back looking like a woman when you stop the testosterone? You have permanently changed them. Infertility is another problem. None of these drugs have been approved for this. They are all being used off-label. I find it ironic that the left that went nuts over hydroxychloroquine being used possibly for COVID are not alarmed that these hormones are being used off-label. There is no long-term studies; we don’t know what happens to them.

We do know that there are dozens and dozens of people who have been through this who–who regret that this happened and a permanent change happened to them, and you know if you’ve ever been around children, 14-year-olds can’t make this decision. In the gender dysphoria clinic in England, 10 percent of the kids are between the ages of 3 and 10. We should be outraged that someone is talking to a 3-year-old about changing their sex. I can’t vote for you if you can’t (INAUDIBLE)–

SEN. PATTY MURRAY (D-WA): Thank you so much, Senator Paul. Senator Levine, thank you for answering the question. I will turn to Senator Baldwin.

Be seeing you

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Biden Nominee Rachel Levine Was a Disaster in Pennsylvania. Now She’s Headed to Washington. | Mises Wire

Posted by M. C. on January 25, 2021

This absurd claim completely falls apart, since later Pennsylvania Health Department guidelines make it explicitly clear that nursing homes must readmit covid-positive patients and continue to accept new ones even if they are covid positive, as well. Guidance issued on May 12, 2020, states that “A positive test result is not a reason to refuse readmission to a resident” and that “An NCF [nursing care facility] must continue to take new admissions, if appropriate beds are available, and a suspected or confirmed positive for COVID-19 is not a reason to deny admission.”

Pennsylvania’s finest.

https://mises.org/wire/biden-nominee-rachel-levine-was-disaster-pennsylvania-now-shes-headed-washington

Zachary Yost

On January 19 it was announced that Joe Biden planned to nominate Rachel Levine, the Pennsylvania (PA) secretary of health, for the position of assistant secretary of health in the Department of Health and Human Services. This is potentially good news for Pennsylvanians, who will finally be rid of her after having had to endure her disastrous covid lockdowns and restrictions for nearly a year, but is likely bad news for the rest of the country.

News coverage of Levine’s nomination is focused almost entirely on the fact that if she is confirmed she will be the first transgender official to be confirmed by the Senate and barely mentions or completely glosses over her handling of the pandemic in PA. NPR doesn’t mention her track record at all other than noting that she, unsurprisingly, called for more federal funding to deal with the virus. The Morning Call at least reported that Levine has faced criticism over her handling of the virus response but failed to mention that under Levine PA nursing homes were forced to accept covid-positive patients.

After the announcement of her forthcoming nomination, Republicans began to attack Levine on social media, especially concerning her nursing home policy. In response, Newsweek published a laughable excuse of a “fact check,” asserting, “There is no evidence to support Greene’s [a Republican representative from Georgia] claim that Levine placed coronavirus-positive patients in nursing home facilities, thus likely contributing ‘to the thousands of elderly deaths in Pennsylvania.’”

However, the author, Julia Marnin, seems to have failed to adequately research PA Department of Health guidelines. She cites a guideline issued in March of 2020 that states that nursing homes “must continue to accept new admissions and receive readmissions for current residents who have been discharged from the hospital who are stable,” and that “This may include stable patients who have had the COVID-19 virus.” Marnin then argues that this language didn’t mean that nursing homes had to accept positive patients but that “they can” and that there is no evidence that Levine’s policy “placed coronavirus-positive patients in nursing homes or contributed to thousands of elderly deaths in the state.”

This absurd claim completely falls apart, since later Pennsylvania Health Department guidelines make it explicitly clear that nursing homes must readmit covid-positive patients and continue to accept new ones even if they are covid positive, as well. Guidance issued on May 12, 2020, states that “A positive test result is not a reason to refuse readmission to a resident” and that “An NCF [nursing care facility] must continue to take new admissions, if appropriate beds are available, and a suspected or confirmed positive for COVID-19 is not a reason to deny admission.”

Until the late fall/early winter surge in cases and deaths, roughly 70 percent of all covid fatalities in Pennsylvania were among nursing home and long-term care facility patients. Since the latest surge, that number has dropped to roughly 50 percent. Yet, even with the latest drop, it is clear that the state government’s nursing home policy has been a disaster, and the media does a great disservice to the country by sweeping a discussion of that record under the rug.

Perhaps even more disturbing than forcing nursing homes to accept covid-positive patients is Levine’s policy goal of social justice–based rationing of covid treatments that was released by the PA Department of Health under Levine’s leadership.

As I have written about previously, this guidance, entitled “Ethical Allocation Framework for Emerging Treatments of COVID-19,” states that “a core goal of public health is to redress inequities that make health and safety less accessible to disadvantaged groups—we show equal respect for all members of society by mitigating the structural inequities that cause certain communities to bear the greatest burden during the pandemic.” In other words, according to Levine’s department of health, public health isn’t just about medical health issues, it is about using the response to medical health issues to engineer society to promote “social justice.”

In this scheme, the state recommends that healthcare providers use a weighted lottery system to ration care and encourages hospitals to weigh a patient’s entry based on his or her socioeconomic status as determined by old data aggregated from census blocks. You would think that promoting “equality” would mean that whether you receive life-saving medical treatment wouldn’t depend on where you live, but some patients are apparently more equal than others.

The fact that someone who apparently subscribes to such a radical egalitarian agenda is likely to soon be one of the most powerful healthcare bureaucrats in the country does not bode well, as calls for the federal government to nationalize healthcare continue unabated. Levine’s radicalism, combined with the incompetence she displayed by forcing nursing homes to accept covid-positive patients and other heavy-handed lockdown measures, will hopefully at least lead to a serious analysis of her record during her Senate confirmation hearing. But don’t hold your breath. Author:

Zachary Yost

Zachary Yost is a freelance writer and Mises U alum. You can subscribe to his newsletter here.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Pennsylvania Bars, Restaurants Not Allowed to Sell Alcohol After – Erie News Now | WICU and WSEE in Erie, PA

Posted by M. C. on November 23, 2020

Coulrophobia

Appearing for one, yes one night only.

They make Trump and Biden look like geniuses right before your eyes.

You thought it couldn’t be done! But you never met PA’s world famous Covid Clowns.

This authority extends to all local enforcement agencies in Pennsylvania. Local law enforcement received guidance on enforcement of the various COVID-19 orders in place from the Pennsylvania State Police through the PA Chiefs of Police Association.

Not exactly 911 material.

https://www.erienewsnow.com/story/42952196/pennsylvania-bars-restaurants-not-allowed-to-sell-alcohol-after-5-pm-wednesday-for-onenight-only-stayathome-advisory-issued

Image

Pennsylvania bars and restaurants will not be permitted to sell alcohol after 5 p.m. Wednesday for one-night only in an effort to prevent large gatherings Thanksgiving Eve and slow the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19).

It was one of several measures Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine announced Monday afternoon.

A stay-at-home advisory has also been issued and goes into effect Monday. Dr. Levine said this is not a shutdown order.

The state is also discouraging household gatherings among people who do not live together.

The state also said it is also stepping up enforcement of its public health orders. Anyone who does not comply with an order may be fined between $25 and $300.

Pennsylvania State Police, local law enforcement, personnel from the departments of Agriculture and State, and PA Liquor Control Board stores who interact with visitors will enforce the orders.

The size of all indoor and outdoor events and gatherings is also being further reduced.

School superintendents will need to affirm their districts are abiding by the rules in place. Any who cannot comply must move to full remote instruction.

Telework is mandatory unless impossible.

Full details

Requiring Strict Safety Measures in Our Schools

Summary: The Wolf Administration is requiring Pre-K to 12 public schools in counties that have been in the substantial transmission level for at least two consecutive weeks to commit to safety measures to ensure the safety and well-being of students and educators. If they choose not to, they must move to fully remote learning without all extra-curricular activities. As of Friday, Nov. 20, there are 59 counties in the substantial transmission level for at least two consecutive weeks.

Requirements for Pre-K to 12 public schools in substantial counties for at least two consecutive weeks:

  • Schools are mandated to comply with updated protocols if a COVID-19 case is identified in the school building.
  • By 5 p.m. Monday, Nov. 30, chief school administrators and the governing body president/chair must sign an attestation form stating they have either transitioned to fully remote learning or are complying with the orders if they are conducting any in-person instruction while in the “substantial” range of transmission.
  • Those schools that do not sign or comply with an attestation are required to provide only fully remote learning and suspend all extracurricular activities as long as the county remains in the substantial transmission level.

“All of us have a responsibility to slow the spread of this virus so our children can stay or return to the classroom,” Gov. Wolf said.

Keeping Businesses, Customers and Employees Safe

Summary: The administration is revising and reissuing its orders to protect businesses, customers, and employees. This order will consolidate previous orders and includes reiterating cleaning and social distancing requirements, mandatory telework requirements unless impossible, and other safety measures.

  • Telework is mandatory unless impossible; safety measures required for businesses including cleaning, social distancing and masking.
  • Online sales and curbside pickup for all shopping are encouraged.

Furthermore, to help with enforcement of existing masking orders in businesses, the administration is introducing liability protection for all businesses that maintain in person operations and are open to the public. Businesses will receive immunity from civil liability only as related to the Secretary’s masking order given that individuals and entities are engaged in essential emergency services activities and disaster services activities when enforcing the order.

Strengthening Gathering Limitations

Summary: As Pennsylvania sees an increase in cases, the commonwealth is strengthening gathering restrictions. All large events and gatherings are now reduced until further notice. In addition, the retail food services industry, including bars, restaurants, and private catered events must end alcohol sales for on-site consumption at 5 p.m. on Nov. 25, 2020 only.

  • All indoor and outdoor events/ gatherings categories size limits will be reduced
  • New limits are as follows:

Maximum Occupancy Calculator for indoor events:

Maximum OccupancyAllowable Indoor Rate
0-2,000 people10% of Maximum Occupancy
2,001 – 10,000 people5% of Maximum Occupancy
Over 10,000 peopleNo events over 500 people

Maximum Occupancy Calculator for outdoor events:

Maximum OccupancyAllowable Outdoor Rate
0-2,000 people15% of Maximum Occupancy
2,001 – 10,000 people10% of Maximum Occupancy
Over 10,000 people5% of Maximum Occupancy – up to 2,500 people
  • Household gatherings are also advised against when attendees include non-household members as noted through the Secretary of Health’s Stay at Home Advisory.
  • To specifically address large crowds, on Nov. 25, 2020 only, all sales or dispensing of alcoholic beverages for on-site consumption at businesses in the retail food services industry, including bars, restaurants, and private catered events must end at 5 p.m. Indoor dining may continue, takeout is encouraged.

Empowering local government

  • The governor and Secretary of Health’s orders were issued pursuant to the authority granted to them under the law, and as such they have the force and effect of law. This authority extends to all local enforcement agencies in Pennsylvania. Local law enforcement received guidance on enforcement of the various COVID-19 orders in place from the Pennsylvania State Police through the PA Chiefs of Police Association.
  • Given the importance of local engagement, the Department of Health has provided recommendations for local municipal leaders, as well as county-wide leadership. While statewide mitigation steps are necessary, local leaders can implement their own orders, ordinances, or directives in order to protect health and safety as long as they are stricter than those mandated by the state. Additionally, counties and municipalities are authorized to enforce state law, including orders from the Secretary of Health or Governor.
  • Local leaders at all levels of government should exercise their authority and influence to support public health efforts that will protect residents and local economies. When local leaders engage, their constituents understand that they are supported in adopting and sustaining preventive behaviors.
  • The Department of Health has established thresholds representing low, moderate, or substantial community transmission of COVID-19, and corresponding actions that can be taken by county and municipal leaders. A county’s threshold may change week-by-week as incidence and percent positivity rates rise and fall. Leaders should implement more public health actions rather than fewer if their county is between thresholds. To determine level of community transmission, counties should use the Department of Health’s COVID-19 Early Warning Monitoring System Dashboard. The Department of Health and the Department of Education use the same metrics to recommend instructional models for school leaders.
  • Recommendations for each level of community transmission include increased communication, collaborative planning, stricter directives, and working with school leaders.

Ramping Up Enforcement

Summary: Orders already in place and those announced today are all enforceable, and law enforcement and state agencies will be stepping up enforcement efforts, issuing citations and fines, and possibly regulatory actions for repeat offenders.

Given that this is a critical time for mitigation efforts and orders to be followed, the Wolf Administration is stepping up enforcement on the following orders:

  • Out of State Travel
  • Mask-wearing
  • Business Safety, including telework, occupancy, cleaning, social distancing
  • Restaurant Mitigation, including occupancy, masking, social distancing, self-certification
  • Gathering Limits
  • School Attestation and Mitigation
  • Orders are enforceable as a disease control measure under the Disease Prevention and Control Law. Citations may be written under the Administrative Code of 1929 71 P. S. § 1409 and/or the Disease Prevention and Control Law of 1955 35 P.S. § 521.20(a). The decision whether to issue a warning or a citation is made on a case-by-case basis and determined by the unique circumstances of each encounter.
  • Persons who fail to comply with an order may be fined between $25 and $300 dollars.
  • Enforcement agencies include the Pennsylvania State Police, local law enforcement, personnel from the departments of Agriculture and State, and PA Liquor Control Board stores who interact with visitors.

Because a component of enforcement is investigating complaints, the Department of Health, with assistance from other agencies, is bolstering its ability to receive and respond to complaints from customers and employees. The department will continue to investigate complaints provided via its webform and plans to use additional staff from other state agencies under the governor’s jurisdiction to process complaints.

Following a complaint about a business, the Department of Health will send a warning letter informing the business of the potential consequences, including fines and closure if the business is not compliant with the mitigation orders. If a business continues to receive complaints, it risks referral to the Pennsylvania State Police or regulatory agencies, further fines and possible closure.

“As Pennsylvanians, we have a responsibility to one another, to do what we can to protect each other and preserve the life we all love in this commonwealth,” Gov. Wolf said. “For those who refuse to do their part to protect their neighbors and communities and refuse to accept that their actions have consequences that cause pain and suffering for others, we will be stepping up enforcement of all of the public health orders Dr. Levine and I have put in place.

“We are in a very dangerous situation, and we need to work together to stop the spread of COVID-19 right now because if we give in to the virus, we will lose many more Pennsylvanians. And that is unacceptable.”

Be seeing you

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

Erie Times E-Edition Article-Virus data in Pa. sows confusion

Posted by M. C. on June 22, 2020

WE HAVE BEEN HAD

Along the way, however, the state has repeatedly struggled to explain how data is being collected and used. Instead, officials have had to play defense to dispel confusion and baseless conspiracy theories after a number or metric has unexpectedly changed.

As early as March, county coroners raised concerns about the health department’s process, and the lack of a uniform death reporting system led to discrepancies between state and county counts.

At daily news conferences throughout much of April, Health Secretary Rachel Levine, M.D., discussed the department’s efforts to “reconcile” death data — to merge and vet numbers being collected from multiple systems. That effort is still ongoing, leading to delays between the date deaths occur and the date they are reported publicly.

Even the state’s process of defining COVID-19 deaths became a major point of confusion. – It shouldn’t be that difficult.

So where were you all this time Erie Times-News? Laying palm leaves wherever Wolf and Levine trod.

I had mentioned my own concerns along similar lines via letters to the editor and emails to “reporters”.

Nothing.

The state has turned this into a (worse) horrendous disaster. All the “data” that has put Erie county on unemployment, forced local businesses to close or spend thousands to remain partially open is a mess. This is just what is being admitted. Tip of the iceberg?

Whenever I hear “we go by the data” I think bad “data” is something to blame (besides people) when the “state” causes something to go belly up.

Of course fake data has it’s advantage$. Pains were taken to note “intentional manipulation” was not a factor. Does thee protesteth too much?

It is apparent from the article the state knew they fostered a disaster. Yet, threaten to act against their power grab and you are threatened with violence.

Expand this to a national and international level. Governments world wide almost certainly have bungled this and taken advantage.

Has COVID Cash has been a factor in jacking up the numbers? If not in Erie certainly in all the larger cities and internationally. The WHO is funded to a great extent by government and private institutions. Crying “the sky is falling” with the appropriate doom and gloom numbers is a sure way to keep the cash flowing. Same for cash strapped EU countries.

The good thing is the annual pandemic, that kills 20-60K in the US and hundreds of thousands world wide and that no one pays much attention to, influenza, has seemingly disappeared. I wonder where it went!

State government and its institutions need to be taken to court and to jail before they hurt more people.

https://erietimes-pa-app.newsmemory.com/?publink=00ed62901

Opaque, shifting policies, numbers undercut efforts, understanding

Spotlight PA is an independent, nonpartisan newsroom powered by The Philadelphia Inquirer in partnership with the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and PennLive/Patriot-News. Sign up for our free weekly newsletter.

HARRISBURG — Data is difficult.

At its best, it’s a tool for sound policy. Data can cut through noise to help spot trends, like new clusters of the coronavirus. It can prove which communities face the most risk and where supplies are most needed.

At its worst, though, data brings trouble. Without context, it can seem to tell a story that might not be true. A county’s case count on its own is misleading without information about tests. A death toll might be declining, but it won’t account for reporting delays.

While there is no evidence of intentional manipulation, the state’s coronavirus data blunders have created openings for confusion and baseless conspiracy theories.

Since March, data about the coronavirus has played a profound role in Pennsylvania, underpinning sweeping decisions to close schools, restrict businesses and separate loved ones. Now, in the early days of the state’s reopening, accurate data is critical to detecting a resurgence.

But over the past three months, the state health department has repeatedly failed to safeguard the public’s trust in its data. While there is no evidence of intentional manipulation, the state’s blunders have created openings for confusion.

A Spotlight PA review of the state’s COVID-19 data practices found:

• From the start, Pennsylvania officials failed to acknowledge the full limitations of COVID-19 data. The state has not always clearly explained to the public what numbers mean, what they don’t and when and why they might change.

• On several occasions, the health department has published data without careful vetting. When mistakes have been made, the state has quietly edited information without clearly documenting and communicating the changes.

• The state has been opaque about its methods and sources used to compile the data, obscuring the public’s ability to scrutinize the numbers.

Taken together, these shortcomings make it difficult for researchers, policymakers, and the public to get an accurate sense of what’s happening.

“The whole picture isn’t being painted,” said Raeven Faye Chandler, director of the Pennsylvania Population Network, a research center housed at Penn State, “and it’s possible that we could derive results that are more optimistic than they actually are.”

In a statement, the state health department defended its handling of COVID-19 data, saying it has faced immense challenges and has tried to be transparent.

“Funding for public health in Pennsylvania is among the lowest in the country, and some of the work being done … is work that up until this response, had not been possible,” the department said. “We are providing data on a daily and weekly basis that previously took months and sometimes more than a year to compile.”

The statement added that “when there are items that may confuse the public, we are doing our best to explain what happened.”

Chandler, whose work focuses on social demographic and health research, uses the state’s numbers to build a data-driven analysis of COVID-19’s effect on high-risk populations. She said she understands the challenges the health department is up against, “given the unprecedented nature” of the pandemic.

But the problem, she said, is there has been “no discussion presented to provide clarity” when the state’s methods with data have changed.

“With the lack of information, it’s hard for researchers to understand what’s happening and what the risks are and how that may vary across populations,” Chandler said.

Be clear and transparent

Since the start of the pandemic, Pennsylvania officials have said decisions would be driven by data. They have asked the public to trust the process, saying policies would be fact-based and fair.

Along the way, however, the state has repeatedly struggled to explain how data is being collected and used. Instead, officials have had to play defense to dispel confusion and baseless conspiracy theories after a number or metric has unexpectedly changed.

In April, Gov. Tom Wolf announced a reopening benchmark with clear numbers, easy for the public to track. If a county had fewer than 50 new cases per 100,000 people over the past 14 days, Wolf said, it would be a sign that it’s safe to start reopening.

“We’re going to be applying the metrics that I mentioned — the number of cases per 100,000 people — to make sure that we’re doing this in a data-driven, evidence-based way,” Wolf said at the time.

Local officials and the public latched on to the metric, only to see the state reopen counties that failed to meet it. Wolf later explained the benchmark had always been one of many, and had shifted as the state’s understanding of COVID-19 evolved.

State officials have likewise struggled to explain how they are collecting death data.

As early as March, county coroners raised concerns about the health department’s process, and the lack of a uniform death reporting system led to discrepancies between state and county counts.

At daily news conferences throughout much of April, Health Secretary Rachel Levine, M.D., discussed the department’s efforts to “reconcile” death data — to merge and vet numbers being collected from multiple systems. That effort is still ongoing, leading to delays between the date deaths occur and the date they are reported publicly.

Even the state’s process of defining COVID-19 deaths became a major point of confusion.

Questions about whether the health department’s count included deaths probably caused by the coronavirus have circled for months. The peak of confusion was in April, when the department announced the addition of probable deaths to the count, then, two days later, said they removed more than 200 of them.

“There wasn’t any clarity, aside from minimal asterisks,” Chandler said.

Currently, the state’s death count does include some probable deaths, according to a department spokesperson. But a member of the public wouldn’t know that. The state releases a daily breakdown of confirmed and probable cases, but does not do the same for deaths.

The state has also faltered in the collection of data about race.

For much of the crisis, it has been mandatory for Pennsylvania health-care providers to report the race and ethnicity of people with COVID-19, but the state still lacks the data for more than half of its almost 80,000 cases.

“It’s a really big deal,” Chandler said. “We need this data to be able to understand how COVID-19 may be disproportionately impacting individuals, particularly those who may be more vulnerable.”

Even when data about race and ethnicity is included, the state doesn’t disclose how it was obtained.

That’s a crucial missing piece of the puzzle, said Bob Gradeck, manager of the Western Pennsylvania Regional Data Center at the University of Pittsburgh’s Center for Social and Urban Research.

As the state tries to understand issues with equity, Gradeck said, “it’s important to understand the context” — where numbers about race and ethnicity come from and whether the collection process has been consistent across the state.

Vet data before it goes public

On June 8, the health department debuted a new data dashboard. At its launch, the dashboard’s number of tests appeared impossibly high. The trendline showed a jump overnight from about 12,000 tests administered one day to 26,100 the next.

But the data was wrong.

After Spotlight PA inquired, Nate Wardle, a spokesperson for the department, acknowledged the error, saying the second day’s number should in fact be 9,410. Hours passed before it was corrected. The situation is just one of many.

In mid-May, when the health department published a long-awaited list of nursing homes with outbreaks of COVID-19, the numbers were immediately contested. Without disclosure or acknowledgement, the department began quietly correcting issues. Days later, they admitted to some problems.

Complexities and shifts “should be expected,” said Gradeck, of the Western Pennsylvania Regional Data Center. “It’s not surprising that the numbers change.”

But if you’re clear about the data’s limitations from the start, he said, you avoid “setting yourself up for a gotcha moment.”

And with data constantly revised, it’s important to provide historical numbers, said Coral Sheldon-Hess, a professor of computer information technology and data analytics at the Community College of Allegheny County.

People analyzing Pennsylvania’s COVID-19 data need to know when to “correct any past numbers, to help make predictions better going forward,” Sheldon-Hess said.

But that hasn’t happened in every case.

Since March, the health department has kept an archive page of coronavirus data, publishing daily tallies. But the archive doesn’t disclose when numbers were later corrected, nor does it explain why the department changed its methodology.

What’s more, the health department said June 8 that with the launch of the new data dashboard, it would no longer be posting updates to the archive page. That wouldn’t be necessary, Wardle said, given that the dashboard contained a “graphical depiction” of when COVID-19 cases and deaths occurred.

A day later, after hearing that the dashboard was difficult for some people to use, the department resumed posting to the archive page.

Make data easy to scrutinize

In 2016, the Wolf administration pledged to make government data available and usable to the public.

“One of our most valuable and underutilized resources in state government is data,” Wolf said at the time.

The initiative centered around OpenDataPA, an online portal for data that’s both free for anyone to use and structured in a way that’s easy for computers to process. Think: Excel spreadsheets or CSV files, not PDF files or tables posted on web pages.

The format of data is important, because it sets the stage for what the public can do with it.

“If I have three hours to work on a dataset and I spend two hours just getting that data, my time to explore and understand the data is limited,” said Jacob Kaplan, a postdoc fellow at the University of Pennsylvania, who’s been studying the spread of the coronavirus in prisons.

In the OpenDataPA portal, the catalog has a listing for data about the coronavirus. But the page doesn’t actually contain data.

Instead, it just links to the health department’s COVID19 website, where data is structured in a way that makes it cumbersome to work with and difficult to analyze.

If Pennsylvania made its source data easily accessible, it could have helped quash concerns in May, when the state said its total count of COVID-19 tests included negative antibody tests, then backtracked on the statement a day later.

The situation raised red flags among epidemiologists, as antibody tests show past infections, not current ones, and, if included, would distort the state’s capacity to detect infections in real time.

But as it stands, Pennsylvania is touting total testing numbers impossible for the public to vet. County-level data shows only the number of people receiving COVID19 tests, without disclosing how many times those people are tested.

Those numbers — exactly how many people are being tested more than once — are “reported internally,” Wardle, the spokesperson, said.

Be seeing you

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Covid: Genocide of the Old and Sick? – LewRockwell

Posted by M. C. on May 27, 2020

Harsh

https://www.lewrockwell.com/2020/05/daniel-mcadams/covid-killing-fields-of-the-old-and-sick/

By

Ron Paul Institute

Percent of Covid deaths who were in nursing homes

Dear Friends of the Ron Paul Institute:

The numbers are sickening and impossible to ignore. Throughout the United States the Coronavirus “pandemic” looks more and more like a war on the elderly and sick than a mysterious new virus that was so dangerous and unknown that the entire country (with notable exceptions – South Dakota for example) had to be completely locked down tighter than Guantanamo Bay.

Nationwide, 42 percent of the Covid-19 death toll was comprised of Americans who were confined to live-in care facilities. While at first it was easy to simply gasp at a disease so cruel that it seemed to target older people, now that the smoke has cleared it is becoming painfully – and criminally – obvious that the virus had some very powerful human enablers.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, who has shamelessly used the coronavirus crisis to puff up his national political profile, ordered the elderly hospitalized with Covid back to their nursing homes where they could spread the virus like so many Typhoid Marys. Amid calls for a Federal probe into Cuomo’s callous and deadly decision to rip elderly patients from their hospital beds and send them back to cramped senior facilities, Cuomo demurs, blaming…you guessed it: Trump!

In Pennsylvania a particularly cruel (and unelected) creature, Rachel Levine, in charge of the state’s Covid policy oversaw a virus outbreak that claimed the elderly in care facilities as 70 percent of the entire state’s death toll. Astonishing! A real genocide of the old. Of course before she ordered those elderly hospitalized with Covid back to their care facilities to infect and kill others she moved her own mother out of the facilities and into a hotel.

Under the Mussolini of Michigan, the Covid-ravaged elderly were also returned to their care facilities where they could infect and kill their housemates. Governor Gretchen Whitmer seemed to actually gain pleasure from destroying untold lives with her strict lockdown orders, stooping so low as to strip a 77 year old barber of his license for daring to open his shop against her will as he faced starvation. She loved pushing around working people, who were nearly immune to the virus. But when it came to actually protecting the vulnerable layers of society, she was AWOL.

These shameful policies were followed in many states and while at first when little was known about the outbreak, there might be some room for acceptable error. But as it became clear the demographics of who were most vulnerable, it has become indefensible to focus all resources on shutting down restaurants, bars, churches, mom and pop shops, schools while ignoring that the virus preyed almost exclusively on the old and sick. Yes, shut down elementary schools where virtually no one fell victim, but throw open the doors to the old folks home where the virus raged like a tsunami. Brilliant move.

Coincidence? We should not discount the possibility that sheer government incompetence is responsible for this massive failure and resulting senior killing fields. Maybe there is more to it. The sanctity of life in the United States has been degraded for years, including via a foreign policy that considers half a million dead Iraqi children “worth it” to undermine Saddam Hussein’s rule. A foreign policy that doesn’t blink when an estimated 40,000 Venezuelan civilians die from US sanctions. A foreign policy that has spend the past nine years arming literal Islamist terrorists to overthrow the secular rule of Syria’s Assad with hundreds of thousands dead in the process and nary a notice in the US mainstream media.

When one embraces the idea that it’s OK to kill millions overseas to maintain a US global empire that only enriches the Beltway military-industrial-Congressional-media-think tank complex, it is not a far leap to embrace the idea that seniors are expendable. When some lives are not considered worth saving – from pre-cradle to grave – it is a slippery slope to view others also not worth saving.

Be seeing you

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

PA Gov. Tom Wolf Signals He’s Open to Federal Investigation into Nursing Homes

Posted by M. C. on May 19, 2020

Governor Tommy must have received his medical training the same place as Cuomo.

Masks? Some are just more equal...

Levine admitted last week that he removed his mother from a nursing home during the pandemic.

“My mother requested, and my sister and I as her children complied to move her to another location during the Covid-19 outbreak,” Levine explained. “My mother is 95 years old. She is very intelligent and more than competent to make her own decisions.”

Wolf hired the wrong Levine.

https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2020/05/19/pa-gov-tom-wolf-signals-hes-open-to-federal-investigation-into-nursing-homes/

by Hannah Bleau

Gov. Tom Wolf speaks at a news conference in his Capitol offices as he unveils a $1.1 billion package intended to help eliminate lead and asbestos contamination in Pennsylvania's schools, homes, day care facilities and public water systems, Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2020 in Harrisburg, Pa. Looking on are Democratic state …

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf (D) on Monday signaled that he is open to a federal investigation into his administration’s handling of the coronavirus outbreak in nursing homes, as they comprise the majority of coronavirus deaths in the state…

Be seeing you

 

 

 

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Erie Times E-Edition Article-Officials: No timetable for county to enter green phase

Posted by M. C. on May 13, 2020

State and county leadership has not changed.

Erie County might not enter…

Dahlkemper said that she asked about a timetable to enter the green…

They didn’t say specifically…

Dahlkemper received no guidance from Wolf or Levine…

“The response we got was that they have not determined…

http://tinyurl.com/ycvtbghc

Erie County might not enter the green phase of Pennsylvania’s COVID-19 reopening plan until all of the other counties in the state have left the red, or most restrictive, phase.

Erie County Executive Kathy Dahlkemper said that she asked about a timetable to enter the green, or least restrictive, phase during a conference call Tuesday with Gov. Tom Wolf and Secretary of Health Rachel Levine, M.D.

“They didn’t say specifically, but I understood that they want everyone to get to yellow,” Dahlkemper said.

Twenty-four Pennsylvania counties, including Erie and Crawford counties, entered the yellow phase on Friday. Thirteen more counties will enter the yellow phase this Friday.

But all of the counties in the eastern part of the state remain in the red phase with no timetable to advance to yellow. In addition, Dahlkemper received no guidance from Wolf or Levine about the criteria needed to move from yellow to green.

“The response we got was that they have not determined what those data points would be, but they want to get us all transitioned to yellow,” Dahlkemper said.

Dahlkemper reported two new confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the county Tuesday. The county’s total has risen to 122 during the pandemic.

Ninety-seven of those people have recovered from the virus, Dahlkemper said. Two have died. That leaves just 23 active cases of COVID-19 in the county, even though 27 cases have been reported since Thursday.

“To be recovered, you need to be 72 hours past your last symptoms,” Dahlkemper said when asked about the recent cases.

“Some do recover quickly, and also when did some of these people get tested or get the results of their test,” Dahlkemper said.

The county has recorded 2,734 negative test results. Contact David Bruce at dbruce@timesnews. com. Follow him on Twitter @ETNBruce.

Be seeing you

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Under order, face masks mandatory for workers in PA

Posted by M. C. on April 16, 2020

Why wait until we are at/past the peak?

Why do I see no masks?

Why do all three of these people need to be there in a group? Aren’t they special!

I guess the point is to make the unwashed masses think you know what you are doing.

https://www.wkbn.com/news/coronavirus/under-order-face-masks-mandatory-for-workers-in-pa/

by:

Pennsylvania Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine, flanked by Gov. Tom Wolf and Department of Education Secretary Pedro Rivera, provides an update on the coronavirus known as COVID-19 on Thursday, March 12, 2020.

Pennsylvania Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine, flanked by Gov. Tom Wolf and Department of Education Secretary Pedro Rivera, provides an update on the coronavirus known as COVID-19 on Thursday, March 12, 2020. (Joe Hermitt/The Patriot-News via AP)

HARRISBURG (WKBN) – Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf announced an order Wednesday, requiring those who work in the state to wear masks and take other social distancing actions in order to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Pennsylvania Department of Health Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine signed an order that directs businesses that have maintained in-person operations to protect their workers by providing face masks and making it a mandatory requirement at the worksite. Businesses also must stagger stop and start times for employees, when able to, to prevent gatherings of groups…

Be seeing you

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »