by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Anthony Fauci, leading leftists, and their malicious band of media mouthpieces have all been sticking their fingers in the dike of evidence lockdowns are a disastrous pandemic strategy. But as the data blows holes in the idea of lockdown inerrancy and the science gushes out, the ruling class is getting swept up in the current of their own failures, flailing at their opponents in a desperate attempt to divert blame.
For more than a year, proponents and opponents of COVID-19 lockdowns have played tug of war over safety and freedom, with both camps declaring fealty to science despite opposite messages. Thanks to the ruling class who insisted shutting down would save lives, that became the conventional wisdom. Fauci, President Joe Biden, and their allies in the media called for nationwide lockdowns, with Biden condemning Trump for leaving the decision to states and Fauci saying this time last year, “I don’t understand why” a nationwide stay-at-home order isn’t happening.
As is so often the case, however, the conventional wisdom was wrong. A new study from Chicago University economist Casey Mulligan validates what the anti-lockdowners knew all along: Lockdowns are a bad idea. After workplaces implemented mitigation measures, they became far safer environments than people’s homes.
“Available data from schools, hospitals, nursing homes, food processing plants, hair stylists, and airlines show employers adopting mitigation protocols in the spring of 2020,” Mulligan wrote in the study. Such mitigation protocols included masking, reasonable social distancing, screening, and improving airflow — steps people wouldn’t take in their own homes. “Coincident with the adoption, infection rates in workplaces typically dropped from well above household rates to well below.”
One example Mulligan included was the Duke Health system. After Duke’s hospitals and clinics implemented strategies to mitigate COVID spread, “an hour worked in the Duke Health system went from being more dangerous than an hour outside work to being more than three times safer.”