Why Isn’t the Coronavirus Death Toll the Big Story?

RUSH: Now, there are other things still related to this that we didn't get into in the first hour. And, you know, Trump's banning travel from Europe. Democrats not happy about this, folks. They do not like losing their precious travel from their precious European Union even for a day. Some people have asked, "What did you think of the president's speech last night? You didn't say." I thought he gave the right speech at the right time.

Look, I know some people get frustrated. "My gosh, couldn't they do something with the sound? You could hear the president breathing." You can hear him breathing whenever he speaks! He's got... It's part of his speech pattern. I've grown accustomed to it. Maybe some sound people could do something to limit it by turning down the compression. But... (sigh) Look, he did what he had to do.

He was purposely dour because that's what the media and the Democrats are demanding. He read from the prompter. That's what they think is presidential. I've had a lot of people say, "That's not Trump's best format! He should just launch, he should..." Right. But understand what this was last night. This wasn't a Trump rally. This was a presidential address from the Oval Office.

Of course, these lamebrains on the left have this idea of what is presidential and what isn't, and reading a teleprompter -- which takes hardly any skill whatsoever -- is considered presidential. So he read the teleprompter, he stuck to the script, he was dour, he was serious. As far as these people are concerned, that's how you define presidential in their stupid, boring world.

So he did what he had to do. Politically, it was wise. I mean, folks, I cannot tell you how much the left in this country hates the idea of shutting travel from their beloved European Union. But because Trump did it, now they're gonna have to go on record either opposing the travel ban or supporting it -- and if they oppose the travel ban, it's gonna be lethal for them.

They may as well come out and proclaim that they're for open borders, which we all know that they are. In any case, these shutdowns may clamp down the virus and the hysteria because I guarantee you... I asked you before the break, "Can anybody tell me the number of coronavirus deaths in the United States?" (interruption) You looked it up, did you? You had to look it up because you didn't know off the top of your head.

The one thing missing in all of this panic-driven coronavirus news is what? The number of deaths in the United States! Why, we get stories, "My God, a player in the NBA actually touched a microphone of a media person. The NBA's canceling the season!" "Oh, my God! Tom Hanks and his wife are in Australia filming an Elvis movie, and they've got the coronavirus. Are we gonna have to stop going to movies?

"Can it spread from the screen to the audience? Oh, my God! Is it that bad?" In all of this panicked reporting, what's the one thing missing? The death toll. You don't hear about the death toll, do you? Do you know what the total is? I'm not gonna tell you. I'll tell you this. About 60% of the death toll has happened in one place, and I don't mean one city. I mean in one place in one city.

Now, you would think with a panic of this kind, with this magnitude, that the central reporting figure would be the number of people dying, and yet? Well, that's not part of the reporting at all. Yet go back. The swine flu: 18,000 people dead, 60 million infected, 300,000 hospitalized in 2009-2010. You know another reason why that didn't make any big news? It's because that's when Obama was selling Obamacare!

Of course, the swine flu helped push the notion for government-run health care. So the swine flu coming along when it did in 2009-2010, the media glommed right onto it and used that to promote Obamacare. There was no way Obama was gonna be ripped or criticized for presiding over a runaway, mad period of swine flu infectious and death. No way. (interruption) You still don't know the death toll? You can't find it. Folks, you're gonna have a tough time finding it. (interruption)

How long did it take you to find the death toll, Snerdley, and where did you find it? Less than a minute, okay, but what...? (interruption) Okay. Did you go to a specific website, or did you just...? (interruption) Did you do a Google search "coronavirus death toll"? (interruption) And what site did it take you to? You even forgot what the website was already? All right.

Okay. I'll tell you what number he found in his site search. (interruption) Thirty-nine, did you say? Do you know that 26 of those deaths have occurred in a nursing home in Seattle, Washington state? You take the 26 deaths out of the equation from the nursing home in Washington state and how many deaths are we talking about? And yet we are reacting this way? We're wrecking the United States economy!

We are literally destroying the stock market. We're telling people not to go to work! We're telling people not to congregate with people. We're shutting down the freaking NBA season (which, big deal). But now Major League Baseball's getting ready to kick off. Oh, what are they gonna do about March Madness, Mr. Snerdley?

What are they gonna do about the NCAA and what are they gonna do with -- upcoming -- the first major of the PGA season? That would be the Masters. Can you imagine the Masters without the patrons? Can you imagine the Masters without the gallery? Would they do it? In fact, I would think golfers might actually like it with no fans in there, no noise, no distraction. But I could be wrong about that.

And in the midst of all this you get to turn on TV and listen to how incompetent the president is and how incapable he is at dealing with such complex situations. What are we talking about? Anthony Fauci of the National Institutes for Health has been all over television telling anybody who would listen the most important thing that happened here was Trump limiting and banning travel from China in January. Fauci is saying if that hadn't happened it'd be much worse in America than it is.

Are they ignoring him? Yes. They're focusing on other things Fauci is saying, but they're ignoring that. Anyway, Trump doing all of the stuff that these little Chihuahuas were ankle-biting him to do, they now either have to oppose it as unnecessary or say that travel bans were too late, which they can't do given their open borders creed.

So Trump's kind of playing it, I think, brilliantly on the political front. You might not have liked the way he sounded. You might not have liked the way he looked. But what he did and what he said in that Oval Orifice address last night has presented several dilemmas for the Democrats. He stayed on script. He was dour, which means they can't find much to smear him with because he stayed on script and he was presidential.

I don't like all these shutdowns. I think this is so overblown. But remember, this is political. Everybody's, "No, Rush, it's not political. It's a health issue." Yeah, I wish it were. If it were being treated as a health issue strictly, it'd be one thing. But it is political. And so in that context, it was the wise thing to do. And maybe in three to four weeks it'll stop the new case increases that are fueling the panic, 'cause it's not the death toll that's fueling the panic. It's something else.

Isn't that amazing, by the way, folks? The death toll is not part of any of the reporting. Is that fascinating to you, or is that something that only fascinates me?

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

Victor Davis Hanson today with a piece at the Townhall.com: "The Great Coronavirus War Is upon Us." He's taken a very interesting approach here, as has Mr. Hanson. He frames his piece, his column as a war against a clever enemy. Imagine the coronavirus as an active, clever enemy of the United States, and that when you think about it like that, think about it that way, the fact that the left is not on board to work together to fight this enemy in every way possible, can really open your eyes and make you get sick to your stomach.

Here's a pull quote from Mr. Hanson's piece. "It is a vengeful enemy. It knows we have killed off or rendered impotent most of its fellow viruses. Its cousin, the flu, has not since 1918 translated its annual tactical wins into a strategic pandemic victory.

"Viruses and anti-human microbes have not had a major win in America in decades, perhaps not since polio used to terrorize, cripple, and kill thousands of Americans annually. COVID-19 believes our progress, confidence, and sophistication are not our strengths but rather our greatest weakness, as our vanity and assumed invulnerability render us ripe for panic. The battle is upon us. But if we stay calm and rational, we can easily defeat the enemy, whose reputation is likely far scarier than its reality."

It's an interesting way to look at it. Imagine the coronavirus as having its own army -- and it does -- but its own tactical, strategic generals and it's very upset that its cousins, other viruses, have failed to wipe out the United States, but now they're back and they've got something else they're trying with some head fakes here and there. The whole point is imagine as though it's a militarized enemy with a functioning leadership, and it's aiming at the United States and it's trying to wipe us out.

You would think that everybody in the U.S. would align against it. And that isn't happening.

"Try this thought experiment. Envision the coronavirus, also known as COVID-19, as a living, breathing enemy -- which, of course, is exactly what it is. But imagine for a moment that we are in real war with a cognizant, thinking, and clever enemy whose sole reason to live is to hurt, maim, or kill as many of us as it can.

"COVID-19 may not have jets, tanks, or nukes, like our past enemies. But its arsenal, numbers, cunning, and willpower are said to be formidable. To win its war against Americans, COVID-19 must infect and sicken lots of Americans each day. If it cannot infect enough victims to multiply and sustain a hungry army of viruses, COVID-19 will soon sputter and die. It will get trapped in just a few hosts among an otherwise victorious and healthy nation of about 330 million."

Interesting to think of it that way because he's exactly right. And we're not united against this thing. We got too many people attempting to carve a political advantage out of it. But I love also, the expression here, that it needs healthy hosts. We can't contain it in the sense that we think we can. Testing and all these things don't contain the virus. It needs to run out of healthy hosts. And that can happen any number of ways.

Healthy hosts need to develop immune systems that spread and render the virus helpless against most of the patients that it attacks. But again, I just want to remind with you be the total number of coronavirus deaths in the United States as we speak is -- dadelut, dadelut, dadelut, dadelut, dadelut dadelut -- 39. In a story featuring this degree of omnipresent panic, don't you think the death toll would be one of the lead items in stories about this?

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: Looky here. Just to mention this again, Seattle, the Associated Press: "Most Coronavirus Patients Recover. Still, Anxiety and Fear Loom." (interruption) Yeah. You people in the media wonder why. "Most Coronavirus Patients Recover." Why not stop the headline there? "Still, Anxiety and Fear Loom." Despite global fears of coronavirus, more than 60,000 people who've gotten it have recovered from it. In fact, hang on here just a second. Let me look at the number: 68,000 people have recovered.

Here are the worldwide numbers. You ready for this? Let's round it up: 128,000 cases worldwide. The total deaths: 4,718, of which in the United States there are 39. So 39 deaths in the United States, 4,718 around the world. The number of recoveries is 69,000. So here's the headline: "Most Coronavirus Patients Recover. Still, Anxiety and Fear Loom."

Folks, look. I opened the program today and I've been itching. I've been chomping at the bit to get here all night and all morning 'cause I had my fill watching television last night. Just can't do it. I'm watching people who are incompetent and unqualified occupy positions of seeming competence on television doing commentary and analysis, and they're nothing but a bunch of political boobs, they don't know what they're talking about.

They have accomplished nothing in their lives, and they're sitting there proclaiming Donald Trump is overmatched, he's not capable, he doesn't have the brain power to deal with complex issues like this, from people who are demonstrable failures at what they've done in their own lives. They can't even run magazines paid for by other people. They can't even run magazines funded for them by Rupert Murdoch, for crying out loud!

Rupert Murdoch gives them the money for the Weekly Standard and they still go broke! And they sit there and they talk about how Trump is incompetent and Trump is unsophisticated. They couldn't live one week in Donald Trump's shoes. They couldn't live one day in his underwear, for crying out loud. See how mad I get just thinking about this stuff? "Well, the situation is just too complex from someone like Donald Trump to keep track." And then some other sniveling little bald-headed creep, "He doesn't care about us."

He cares about you more than Barack Obama ever did. He cares about you more than Fidel Castro ever would. He cares about you more than Vladimir Putin ever would or any ChiCom leader. Look what he did reviving the U.S. economy. Look what he's done for the stupid media business that you're in. What do you mean, he doesn't care about you? What do you think Make America Great Again is? It's making America great so everybody in it has a chance to be great, to be prosperous. What do you mean, he doesn't care about you?

Donald Trump's not sitting there hoping you get sick. You're the guys that are making it very, very hard to do anything about this by trying to reap as much political advantage out of this as you can. I could go through the swine flu numbers again. You realize that 300,000 people were hospitalized, over 60 million infected with the swine flu in 2009-2010, 17,000 deaths, the swine flu, and you don't even remember it because the Drive-By Media was too busy trying to make Obama look brilliant and competent. And they were using it to help him sell Obamacare.

Meanwhile, 39 deaths from the coronavirus. Total cases, United States, 1,218. The National Hockey League just announced they're stopping their season. The NBA has announced they're stopping their season. We're losing our minds as a nation. We're going soft. This is stupid! This panic and fear. I mean, if people were dropping like flies, it'd be one thing. But we're talking about a virus that is from the family of the common cold.

But since this is the atmosphere that's been created, then this is -- look at this: "Tests Show New Coronavirus Can Live on Surfaces for as Long as Three Days." Oh, no! Really? Do you know how long germs survive on things and you've never even been told about it before. Now we got these guests on TV wearing their white lab coats. I saw some guy last night that showed up with a white lab coat and a stethoscope just to give himself credibility.

No. I'm not panicked because we're gonna come out of this. We always do. But we are wrecking aspects our economy that are unnecessary to be wrecked. We don't need to be doing this. And I'm not even sure that a majority of the American people agree with all of this that's happening. It's just assumed that they do because another thing the Drive-By Media does is assume that everything they think represents majority thinking in America.

I have a tough time believing that we have become a nation of cowards quivering in fear, cowering in the corners of our basements hoping that the coronavirus somehow misses us. Maybe I'm wrong. Maybe I've become totally out of touch. But I don't think so. Don't misunderstand me. I am not trying to downplay this, and I'm not trying to tell you this thing is a hoax, anything of the sort.

I'm saying there's a gigantic sense of proportion missing here on purpose because this has been politicized. I spotted it the minute it began, when this virus pops up and Donald Trump becomes the number one enemy and the focal point, then when the hell else can it be but political.

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