Will Joe ever get his head out of his...mask?
Not one to discard a useful political prop a moment before its allotted time, President Biden is milking the ominous optics of the black mask for all its worth. The Biden-Harris administration — as COVID-created a phenomenon as anything that's escaped the Wuhan lab — is not ready for a return to complete normalcy just yet. At his sparsely attended address to a joint session of Congress last Wednesday night, Biden signaled his wish to yet extend the crisis atmosphere that's held Americans by the throat for over a year. Though fully vaccinated (as was everyone in the chamber), he pointedly approached the podium fully masked, slowly removing it only when ready to speak. Behind him sat Kamala Harris and Nancy Pelosi, both still ostentatiously trussed. The symbolism was unmistakable and utterly depressing.
Prolonging, perhaps deepening the feelings of lurking disaster and looming upheaval among our people is the key to holding onto power for the Dems, and they're quite willing to pursue that destructive course come what may. Keeping us permanently sweating at "battle stations" is the only way to justify the staggering expenditures Biden pushed in his surreal, C-SPAN-ish performance to a nearly empty House chamber. How else can he hope to extend government control over the behavior and work habits of so many people, thereby deepening the dependency so essential to public support for generally unpopular socialist ideas?
Fear is the Democrat Party's coin of the realm — fear, in all shapes and sizes, coming at you from all directions. Fear of the still hovering Donald Trump and the Deep State dismantlement he attempted. Fear of the indelible bigotry of white people — inherited just by virtue of being born white. And perhaps most profitably in political terms, fear of the continued scourge of COVID-19. Unremitting fear, to such an extent that it justifies the insanely irresponsible profligacy Biden seeks to advance.
Respectfully parting company with FDR, "fear itself "is not "the only thing we have to fear." Sadly, it's become the only thing Democrats have left to peddle!
The mask, Biden's chosen combat headgear, was used quite effectively during the 2020 campaign to convey the false impression that it was he, and not President Trump, who was truly serious about fighting the pandemic. Joe and Dr. Jill wrapped themselves like two walking mummies on most public occasions (perhaps as much a precaution against verbal gaffes as viral infection) and let the public's natural fear do the rest. Unwisely, Mr. Trump was slow to grasp the power of such a cheap, obvious tactic, and it wound up costing him dearly.
However, fear as a means of behavior control produces a diminishing return. Human nature dictates that anxiety levels will eventually subside, despite the best efforts of Joe and Company to stretch their political utility. The Trump vaccines that Biden and Harris derided before their nearly miraculous delivery, and now claim parental rights to, are doing their work. New infections are down, even in badly managed blue states. Warmer weather, bringing greater healthy, virus-fighting outdoor activity, is coming. Herd immunity, that apparent enemy of the power our bureaucratic shepherds have gathered into their hands, seems well on the way.
Joe's mask obsession, faintly ridiculous a year ago when the risk of infection was far more acute, is now laugh-out-loud funny. The preposterous nature of the Brady Bunch screen shot of him being the only masked leader among all those attending an international Zoom conference — as if his computer was about to cough in his direction — finally seems to have penetrated his committee of handlers, since soon afterward, he personally announced a token rollback of CDC masking requirements.
Whether the issue is when to doff masks, or whether to be vaccinated, stampeding people into fearful submission is not leadership. Confidence, earned confidence, in our elected officials, our doctors, and our scientists is what will inspire cooperation and consensual compliance with the wishes — and in a truly free society, they are just wishes, not directives — of health officials.
So President Biden would be well advised to end the mask-signaling and fear-mongering as a means to his political ends, whatever in Heaven's name they may turn out to be. Scare tactics are a double-edged sword; use them too many times, and Joe might find that he risks being politically trampled by that herd (immune or otherwise) that he helped put on a panic-stricken run.
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