During a Tuesday hearing of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions, Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) went on a reality-disconnected rant against those trying to protect Americans from the spread of the Coronavirus. He basically implied that he thinks the entire idea of “forecasts” is garbage, as if he wants Americans to simply close their eyes, march off into the distance, and hope for the best, no matter if there’s a deadly virus that has killed over 125,000 Americans spreading rapidly. When Dr. Anthony Fauci, who was a witness at the hearing, finally got a chance to answer Paul’s rambling attempt at a question, he laughed and asked for clarification from the committee chairman about how much time he had to respond, since Paul had gone well over the allotted five minutes.
Fauci begins his response by laughing aloud.
— Josh Wingrove (@josh_wingrove) June 30, 2020
There’s apparently little to nothing that will cause Paul to waver from his mindset of “protecting” pompously-claimed “freedoms” at all costs. In his original melodramatic attempt at a question, the Senator self-confidently declared:
‘Fatal conceit is the concept that central planning, with decision-making concentrated in a few hands, can never fully grasp the millions of complex, individual interactions occurring simultaneously in the marketplace. It is a fatal conceit to believe any one person or small group of people has the knowledge necessary to direct an economy or dictate public health behavior… It’s important to realize if society meekly submits to an expert, and that expert is wrong, a great deal of harm may occur, when we allow one man’s policy or one group of small men and women to be foisted on an entire nation.’
Watch a clip below:
Rand Paul criticized Dr. Fauci for not providing more “optimism” and for being “presumptuous” — and Fauci wasn’t really having it pic.twitter.com/2yEoZKrVYW
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) June 30, 2020
So now following basic public health guidelines is “meek” to Paul? It’s important to note — Paul’s implication that individuals like Fauci, Dr. Deborah Birx, and others have behaved like some kind of puppet masters of U.S. policy is brazenly false, conspiratorial nonsense. Does Paul think that there’s little need for caution, even if it’s slightly more than technically necessary, when over 125,000 Americans are dead and health authorities struggle to get a handle on the virus?
A quote from Rand Paul at the Senate coronavirus hearing: "We shouldn't presume that a group of experts somehow knows what's best for everyone."
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) June 30, 2020
The example that Paul cited in alleged support of his criticism of the supposed faults of supposed “central planning” is that of schools. He pointed, for instance, to data from European countries indicating no significant spikes in Coronavirus cases after schools reopened, and he criticized those in the U.S. who have suggested schools might need to remain closed. Paul also noted the lack of evidence supporting the idea of a significant level of child-to-adult transmission.
Rand Paul now warning Americans at Senate hearing about the dangers of relying on expert advice in fight against coronavirus
— John Harwood (@JohnJHarwood) June 30, 2020
Paul brazenly ignores the facts that, for starters, European countries have imposed an actually effective plan to curtail the pandemic, and cases are down overall, entirely unlike the U.S. situation. Thus, there might be a low opportunity for the virus to emerge at a school in the first place. He also ignores the fact that it’s not just children on school campuses! Adults are there too. They can get sick and spread the virus.
A reminder that it isn’t just Trump who is letting Americans die. Rand Paul and an entire culture of post-truth fantastic thinking may prove deadlier than either the Russians or coronavirus. https://t.co/XfcZRBKvOT
— Derek Cressman (@DerekCressman) June 30, 2020
Fauci noted in response to Paul, who eventually asked for “more on schools” from the health official, that he believes authorities should “do whatever we can to get the children back in school.”
Listening to Rand Paul (opthamologist) berate and lecture A Fauci (three-decade head of NIH Infectious Disease division) on matters of epidemiological science is a reminder that ….
… the admirable state of Kentucky is represented by (1) Mitch McConnell, and (2) this guy.
— James Fallows (@JamesFallows) June 30, 2020