The pandemic’s true villain and other commentary

Conservative: The Pandemic’s True Villain

The Federalist’s Georgi Boorman charges that Anthony Fauci wasn’t just “a benevolent science bureaucrat ‘trying to figure it out’ ” nor a “bumbling idiot” — but the “villain” of a real-life “political thriller.” The release of a trove of e-mails by the national virus guru show that he was warned about a potential man-made origin to the coronavirus, yet “Fauci later blasted the ‘lab-origin theory’ as completely incredible, leading the entire media-industrial complex to deride theories of bioengineering or even the idea the ­virus might have leaked from the Wuhan Institute of Virology.” His unbending ­insistence no doubt influenced “Facebook banning posts supporting the lab-origin theory.” Such conduct — including his mask mendacity, his hankering for protracted lockdowns and his potential funding role in the ­Wuhan research that created the virus — make him a “true arch-villain.”

From the left: Dems’ Diversity Challenge

The US electorate’s “rising racial diversity . . . is generally understood to be beneficial to the Democrats’ electoral fortunes,” Ruy Teixeira notes at Persuasion, but with a big complication: “Voter preferences do not generally remain the same.” In key 2016 states, for example, Dems’ rainbow coalition couldn’t overcome stronger “shifts among white voters, driven by white non-college voters,” toward the GOP and Donald Trump. Meanwhile, Joe Biden’s swing-state wins in 2020 were often due to white college-educated voters’ Democratic shift overwhelming “the nationwide pattern of Hispanic voters moving toward Trump.” Demographics aren’t destiny, “unless all else remains equal. And all else almost never remains equal.”

Libertarian: Banning ‘Misinfo’ Blocks the Truth

Facebook’s “quiet but dramatic reveal” that it would no longer censor lab-leak theories “comes in the midst of heated debate about how to ­respond to the perception that social media are amplifying the spread of false information,” notes Reason’s Robby Soave. The left’s “recent obsession with rendering unsayable anything that clashes with its preferred narrative is the height of hubris,” and the revelation that it has been condemning a plausible theory for months “should put to rest the idea that banning or regulating misinformation should be a chief public-policy goal.” But change will require social-media companies to “remember that many supposedly authoritative sources in and out of government have partisan axes to grind.” Otherwise, “any broader effort to shut down conversations that include a great number of lies is likely to inadvertently criminalize some politically inconvenient truth.”

Media watch: Biden’s Useful Idiots

“News reporters are supposed to ask questions, not play the ‘useful idiot’ or the political operative,” remarks the Chicago Tribune’s John Kass. Real questions — not what President Biden’s “favorite ice-cream flavor” is, as some reporters asked recently. Yet “much of the Democrat-friendly corporate media is strenuously avoiding the Hunter Biden story,” though the “president’s son is under federal investigation for tax fraud, his famous laptop is now in the custody of the FBI, and photos are circulating of Joe Biden at dinner with Hunter’s business friends.” Does “China have anything on our president” through Hunter’s “questionable and clout-heavy China business dealings?” The “New York Post is on it,” but the rest of the media don’t “seem all that interested.” You can bet, though, that “China is interested.”

Economics take: The Global Tax Deal’s a Mess

“One small problem” with the tax deal G7 nations reached Saturday, snarks Matthew Lynn at Spectator USA: It’s “an unworkable mess.” The 15 percent minimum tax on tech companies is “less than any major developed country charges anyway, except for Ireland,” and “offshore tax ­havens” aren’t part of the deal. The rule on taxing 20 percent of profits above a 10 percent threshold in countries where sales are made, according to “some pro-rata basis” yet to be determined, is confusing; accountants will “have a field day” avoiding it. Plus, any higher rates may be “passed on in the form of higher prices, lower wages or lower dividends.” Yes, there have been some “poorly designed taxes over the decades,” but “this is among the very worst.”

Compiled by The Post Editorial Board

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