by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Veronique de Rugy writes at National Review Online about questionable information from the Centers for Disease Control.
The New York Times’ David Leonhardt has a piece … to set the record straight about the CDC’s outdoor-transmission number. The CDC said 10 percent, which seemed incredibly high to me last month based on evidence I had seen, and which Leonhardt says today is “almost certainly misleading”:
“It appears to be based partly on a misclassification of some Covid transmission that actually took place in enclosed spaces (as I explain below). An even bigger issue is the extreme caution of C.D.C. officials, who picked a benchmark — 10 percent — so high that nobody could reasonably dispute it.
“That benchmark ‘seems to be a huge exaggeration,’ as Dr. Muge Cevik, a virologist at the University of St. Andrews, said. In truth, the share of transmission that has occurred outdoors seems to be below 1 percent and may be below 0.1 percent, multiple epidemiologists told me. The rare outdoor transmission that has happened almost all seems to have involved crowded places or close conversation. …”
… Leonhardt has been very good at holding public-health experts accountable recently in a way that few in the media have been willing to, and he is playing an important role in calming those Americans panicking over this virus, or at least helping them to assess the risk better.
Finally, not so long ago, Tevi Troy — a wonderful presidential historian, author of the book Fight House, and a public-health expert — was interviewed by Jonah Goldberg on The Remnant about the United States’ COVID response. It is worth listening to, as it highlights very clearly the permanent damage done to the public perception about the usefulness of and trust in our public-health community. Troy reminds us that the public-health community is a nanny state-ish group, as well as detailing some of the strategic mistruths about mask-wearing, the BLM protests, and other matters.