Years ago, when the Smothers Brothers were the entertainment at a COLAB dinner, Tom Smothers pulled out a yo-yo and dazzled the crowd with his mastery of this child’s toy. Well, as it turns out, Gov. Gavin Newsom could teach Tommy a thing or two about yo-yo tricks, as he deftly dangled our personal freedoms and economic liberties on a string for the past year.
If you recall, we were subject to a temporary, near total lockdown that was supposed to last 15 days last March.
That morphed into an extended lockdown that was eventually attenuated by a series of reopening stages based upon the number of “cases” per 100,000 persons and the county’s testing/contract tracing capacity. Next up, more businesses were allowed to reopen, albeit with severe restrictions, as Gov. Newsom moved the goal posts to reopen based on testing positivity rates and the emergence of new cases.
Then Gov. Newsom changed virtually everything when he no longer allowed a county to progress through his four stages based upon their own COVID-19 numbers. Instead, he unilaterally forced counties to become part of a larger geographical region that fixed their combined destinies on hospitalization and the availability of ICU beds.
And, to note, none of Gov. Newsom’s stages ever allowed us to return to normal!
Then last Monday, Gov. Newsom dropped the regional approach and the hospitalization/ICU criteria saying that “the numbers were projected to get better,” despite the fact that, according to The Associated Press, the San Joaquin Valley agricultural region increased its ICU capacity to a mere 1.3%, its first time above zero in recent weeks, and the Southern California region, the most populous in the state, was still at zero ICU capacity.
Meanwhile, California ranks nearly dead last in getting people vaccinated. One of the problems? The obsession with testing! Why is the state still spending so much time, energy and money testing people when we could be vaccinating them?
I believe there are four reasons for Gov. Newsom’s latest about-face, including the Joe Biden win, lawsuits filed against the governor, the COVID vaccine rollout debacle, all of which point to the No. 4 reason: the recall effort.
With respect to the effect of the Biden win, many conservative pundits, including yours truly, were shamed as conspiracy theorists when we suggested that Democrats wanted to tank the economy while blaming former President Donald Trump for the spread of COVID and the deaths that ensued. Moreover, tanking the economy would position a Biden administration for a bailout of the states that would go far beyond the fiscal impacts of covid.
True to form, President Joe Biden’s COVID-related, $1.9 trillion recovery plan includes $350 billion to bailout local and state governments, not to mention another $350 billion federal supplement for state unemployment payments.
Don’t be surprised if Gov. Newsom asks for another $30 billion to recover the illicit payments his administration lost from giving money to Mexican drug cartels, Russian thieves, along with numerous people in prisons and jails!
With respect to lawsuits against Gov. Newsom, they were many fold. These included suits by members of the state legislature, counties such as San Bernardino, various business associations and churches.
With respect to the vaccine rollout, we are near last place in our ability to get people vaccinated. And there is little to no talk about administering second doses, without which the vaccine is only 50% effective, and a one-dose regimen could cause a major mutation of the virus.
Finally, speaking of the governor’s credibility and his future electability, there is the drive to recall him. Gov. Newsom refused to acknowledge there was a recall effort until the 1.25 million signature milestone was reached and large donations began pouring in.
Most likely, he opened back up portions of the economy after failing to convince the populace that the recall effort was an attempted coup, which I might add, was probably Aunt Nancy’s idea!