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My County’s New Mask Mandate: Stupid is as Stupid Was

“Two things are infinite: the Universe and human stupidity; and I’m not sure about the Universe.”

—Albert Einstein

So yea, because of Omicron my country executive, Calvin Ball—who I voted for and who has done far more pandering than thinking during COVID— implemented a mask mandate. All indoor locations are subjected to this necessary and lifesaving measure. The Country Executive, using the best that medical science has to offer, is doing this to save lives.

Funny, because the executive hasn’t banned obesity or smoking, the two major determinants of health in our state, so if he was really trying to save lives, why not just legislate mandatory health safety across the board? Hmmm, I guess that is likely coming our way, but let’s start with masks.

Two funny stories. First, Ball cited the fact that hospitals were filling up with COVID patients as justification for his mandate. On the same day he said that, I received an email from my hospital saying that the emergency room was cluttered by COVID positive people who weren’t sick but who either refused to leave or whose facilities (nursing homes and assisted livings) or families refused to take them back. No, no one was ill from Omicron, it’s just they were scared after almost two years of fear mongering by Ball and others, creating a fabricated hospital crisis only to be made worse by a new mask mandate which visibly instills more fear into the atmosphere that is already saturated by fear, all for what is now an over-hyped cold.

Second funny thing is that testing centers in our country have become overwhelmed by that same dread of escalating cases (that the CNN geniuses who created our COVID mess keep pounding us with) that drove Calvin Ball to take immediate action with his mandate. You can drive and see long lines of people being tested, either because they believe they have COVID or because they aren’t allowed into family gatherings without a negative test. So now we have scores of people standing in close quarters falsely believing that their mask is protecting them, healthy people standing near people with COVID, and guess what’s going to happen? Yea, they may test negative, but they likely caught COVID on that line and will bring it to grandmom’s house tomorrow. Of course, this variant isn’t really very dangerous to even the elderly, who Ball did nothing to protect throughout the pandemic, but with more testing there will be more cases and more media hysteria and more fear and more mandates. A vicious cycle.

Why is this mask mandate absurd in the setting of a virus that goes through masks? Just to ask that question provides its answer, although such common sense hasn't penetrated Calvin Ball's brain yet, which is too cluttered by Fauci "science" to open his eyes to reality.

In fact, in our county, the largest flurry of COVID cases is occurring in long term care and in schools, two venues that already have mask mandates in place. Thus, our extant mask mandates clearly aren’t working so Executive Ball rubs his brilliant head and says: Guess we need more mask mandates. Even our governor, whose famous line is “Just wear your damned mask” caught COVID through a mask and HE is considering a new mask mandate. Are the lights out inside these people’s skulls or is it all for political theater that they are demanding a solution that is already in place and failing?

I’ve talked about the danger of masks in other blogs, two of which are notable here. First the illusion that masks protect you and others from infection gives mask wearers a false sense of security that exposes them and others to danger. People with sickness feel safe to stand in testing lines, go to the store, and be with people as long as they are wearing a mask. Thus is this snake-oil approach touted by the likes of Ball and Hogan and Fauci as being science-based, necessary, and lifesaving actually causing more COVID spread by giving people false reassurance and inviting them to act recklessly. This cognitive disconnect is most obvious in some of the long-term care places I work—something that causes me and all the nurses and aides just shake our heads in utter disbelief—since when our facilities are put on lock down because someone has COVID, all of us have to be tested weekly and take precautions, but family members can come in not tested as long as they’re wearing a mask. Thus are we inviting in family members into the most vulnerable locations in the nation and telling them that the mask is enough to protect them, thereby assuring that COVID will enter these buildings effortlessly.

Since the start of this crisis, as COVID swept through our masked facilities, we have asked for rapid daily testing of anyone who enters a long-term care facility. Health care workers like me are happy to be tested every day to make sure we’re not infected. Families are happy to do that too. That strategy has worked brilliantly in Japan and South Korea to stop COVID spread into long term care. But according to the likes of Calvin Ball and Anthony Fauci, we have no need for testing when we have masks to protect us. What about the 300,000+ long-term care deaths in our nation that have occurred in facilities with mask mandates in place from the start of COVID? Well, people must have been wearing the masks wrong, since hell, we know masks work, so how else could all those people have died with mask mandates in place? Thus, Calvin Ball and all the other mask fanatics, by elevating masks to a superpower shield, have prevented us from adapting measures that could actually save lives. “Just wear the damned mask.” How’s that working out, Governor Hogan? I see the burning fires of human devastation from this false credo, but somehow reality has escaped their tinted glances, so, more mandates!

I wrote to Calvin Ball about my concerns, but as with all the notes I’ve written to him and Governor Hogan insisting on a policy of rapid daily testing and early treatment in long term care, they respond with form letters telling me what a great job they’re doing. I guess a doc who has cared for hundreds of COVID victims infected through masks, who has written two academic books on COVID, who was named Top Doc by Baltimore Magazine the past two years, I guess I’m not worthy to express my opinion. The Baltimore Sun thinks so too. I wrote an op-ed about the Executive’s new order, and they just ignored it. They don’t want to hear from a real doctor about these issues; I’m sure they think my views—my facts which don’t fit into their neat and tidy dogma—are dangerous. I had a radio interview pulled because I talked about masks not working in long term care; the host said my views were dangerous. And of course my license came under review for the same reason, so yea, why listen to me when you have a bunch of basement epidemiologists over at Hopkins making models that say masks work, and Antony Fauci and his CNN pals telling us that the mask is science at its best. I always say it’s like when your weather app says it’s sunny but it’s raining outside. Fauci and Calvin Ball believe the app and say, no it’s not raining, look at the app, it’s sunny. Don’t believe people saying it’s raining. That’s fake news and anti-science!

Here’s my op-ed if you want to read it. For someone as indignant as I am about the complete obliteration of science and common sense in the name of political exigency and dogmatic thinking that the mask mandate is, I think it’s pretty measured and even-handed.

Howard County Executive Mask Mandate op ed
Download PDF • 107KB

So, the mask law was slated to start at 5pm last Sunday, and I went to my gym earlier in the day and asked, “I still have time to work out without my mask, right?” And the guy at the front desk laughed and said, “Yep. The COVID swarm doesn’t arrive until 5pm. We’re COVID free until then. And then it hits us.” Of course, he was joking. Somehow, he knew a lot more than Calvin Ball about how absurd this new mandate really is. Guess he's not versed in Fauci science.

The next day, after the mandate started, I was going to Starbucks to do some work, and I called them and asked if I had to wear a mask at the table. They told me yes. So, I called the County Executive’s office and asked. “If i am eating or drinking at an indoor table do I have to wear a mask?” Executive Ball’s assistant responded that I didn’t if I was actively eating or drinking. “What if the cup is there but I am not actually drinking at the time, do I have to put the mask back on?” I asked. “It depends how long between sips,” she said. So, I asked, “How long between sips is scientifically safe to keep the mask off so I don’t spread my COVID all over the restaurant?” She put me on hold to ask someone higher up! Apparently, there was a scientific answer to this question; she didn’t even care that I said I had COVID (which I don’t and never did despite not wearing masks) but seemed focused on the interval between sips. When she came back on, she told me to use my best judgment. I guess Fauci and the Hopkins basement doctors and all the other COVID geniuses are still working on that conundrum. Hopefully they’ll figure it out soon and tell Calvin Ball so he can enlighten us!

So now, for a variant of COVID that is far less lethal than flu, one that is clogging up our emergency rooms not from illness but from fear, and one that if it spreads enough may allow us to get to herd immunity, we are resorting to the old trick of counting cases, scaring everyone to death, and forcing people to mask up which is nothing but a parlor trick that gives our Executive some good creds for being tough and caring. Masks are harmful to individuals and to society in ways we have shown, their prolific use weaves an image of dystopian horror across the landscape, and they clearly don’t stop the spread of infection. But the County Executive and the Baltimore Sun and the over-educated affluent people in my county don’t care about all those petty details; we need to be safe; can’t you see the cases escalating? Religious faith couched in the language of science and then forced upon everyone is a great way to handle a self-created crisis and to explain away almost two years of lethal policy failures. Another surge? Well then, time to get out the old Fauci playbook and resort to masks! Works every time, not to stop the virus, but to soothe the public and trick them into thinking we’re doing something.

Oh, and as an ironic footnote, on the day my op-ed was rejected, the very public health officials who helped to orchestrate the mask myth, who insisted on locking up my frail patients and instigating many of their deaths, who demanded a prolonged lock-down of society, who didn’t advocate early treatment until monoclonals came out (treatment I gave despite their lack of guidance and which saved many lives), were featured in an article in the same Baltimore Sun for being named Marylanders of the Year. That’s American exceptionalism at its best! The highest death toll in the world from both COVID and from the quarantine, and we slap the architects of our policy on the back while shunning anyone trying to make a difference. Such is science under the careful watch of Fauci and Calvin Ball. Just like Einstein said at the start of this blog, there’s no accounting for human stupidity.

I want to end with a quote from Scott Atlas’ new book. Atlas worked tirelessly to steer our country in a pragmatic, scientific, and humanistic direction; had we heeded his words, hundreds of thousands of lives would have been saved, and millions would not have had to suffer under the Faucist quarantine and mask myth. He is one of my medical heroes, because despite being called a charlatan and even mass murderer by the media and true charlatans, he persevered and kept trying. Hopefully one day, as he says in his book, the truth will prevail. He’s what he writes at the start:

“Accountability remains absent from government leaders, public health officials, and scientists in failing to admit errors about lockdowns; some even distort their records and portray disastrous death tallies as ‘successes.’ Public health officials and government leaders keep using wildly incorrect projections that instill fear and alarm the public, and when they’re wrong, they fail to acknowledge that fact.”

He could have been written that about Calvin Ball, who again is wrapping our county in a deceptive vice, helping no one who needs help, instilling the atmosphere with the pollution of fear, and resorting to cheap parlor tricks to address a virus that is fairly mild and whose only vice is that we keep testing for it unnecessarily and increasing the number of cases.

Anything for votes I guess. He certainly won’t get mine!

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