Issues & Insights
COVID-19 virus. Source: Centers for Disease Control

When Will The U.S. Be Released From COVID Prison?

Japan announced Tuesday that it was lifting its coronavirus state of emergency. The country joins Norway, Sweden, and Denmark in returning to normal. America, however, will continue to be largely under the boot of politicians, bureaucrats, and meddlesome public health officials. Even convicts have release dates. But we have no idea when we’ll be liberated because there are no objective standards, only political whim.

When asked Monday “how many Americans need to be vaccinated for us to go back to normal,” President Joe Biden replied: “I think we get the vast majority … 96, 97, 98 percent.”

First of all, that’s unrealistic. There is no single activity that more than 95% of the population, any population, will agree to participate in. Even if Biden said that Washington was going to hand out $1 million to every American next week, there would be holdouts. So the president’s benchmark is never going to be met. Which might very well be by design.

Second, herd immunity can be achieved when as little as “70% of the population – more than 200 million people” have recovered from COVID-19, says the Mayo Clinic, which also acknowledges that “reaching herd immunity through vaccination against COVID-19 might be difficult for many reasons.”

Of course a combination of those who have recovered and those who’ve taken the shot(s) could provide herd immunity.

Opinions, of course, vary. Others say the threshold is higher. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, whose credibility is suspect at best, said at one time that herd immunity could be reached at a 60% to 70% vaccination rate. He then changed it to 70% to 75%, then to 80% to 85%, even suggesting but not claiming that the minimum is 90%, while also admitting that he’s basing his estimates on a gut feeling.

Seems obvious where Biden is getting his “science” from.

Incidentally, the full-vaccination rate is 59% in Japan, 64% in Sweden, and 68% in Norway, all higher than the U.S. rate of 56%, but nowhere near the impossible rates that Fauci and Biden are demanding. Even Denmark, where the rate is 75%, falls short of the ruling class’ minimum.

While some red state governors have restored basic freedoms, Biden and blue state governors seem they’d rather follow the uncompromising models of Australia, which has suffered from “a mad rush into totalitarianism,” and New Zealand, also a “prison nation.” The Democrats and media are deeply invested in both stoking fear and putting as much of the country under their control as is possible.

Not only have tighter restrictions robbed people of their freedom, they have caused outcomes worse than if officials had done nothing in response to the pandemic. According to investigative journalist Jordan Schachtel, “you can now make the case that these ‘public health’ solutions actually caused far more health problems than COVID-19 ever could by itself.” He didn’t go by his gut. He arrived at that conclusion by following the facts, which led him to observe:

In America, due to government edicts, our overall health declined, we got sicker, we saw an unprecedented obesity increase, among other issues caused by ‘public health’ interventions. Far from solving the virus issue at hand, it’s become clear that all of these mandates and restrictions just added additional problems on top of the issue of an endemic seasonal virus.

Democrats have insisted theirs is the party of science and it is science that has determined their responses to the pandemic. But it’s clear that politics dictate their decisions, and that their rules will be lifted only when doing so benefits them and their agenda. The coronavirus outbreak has been a gift to the party that has come to exist solely to perpetuate and increase its ruling class powers and privileges.

— Written by the I&I Editorial Board

We Could Use Your Help

Issues & Insights was founded by seasoned journalists of the IBD Editorials page. Our mission is to provide timely, fact-based reporting and deeply informed analysis on the news of the day -- without fear or favor.

We’re doing this on a voluntary basis because we believe in a free press, and because we aren't afraid to tell the truth, even if it means being targeted by the left. Revenue from ads on the site help, but your support will truly make a difference in keeping our mission going. If you like what you see, feel free to visit our Donations Page by clicking here. And be sure to tell your friends!

You can also subscribe to I&I: It's free!

Just enter your email address below to get started.


I & I Editorial Board

The Issues and Insights Editorial Board has decades of experience in journalism, commentary and public policy.


  • “When Will The U.S. Be Released From COVID Prison?” Perhaps when Democrats figure out their next ‘existential, but useful, crisis’. Meanwhile, figure out that you are being gamed yet?
    1) March 22, 2020 “Democrat House Majority Whip Rep. Jim Clyburn said that the Coronavirus Relief Bill is “a tremendous opportunity to restructure things to fit our vision,”
    2) April 2, 2020 “California Governor Newsom: Yes, We Will Use Coronavirus to ‘Reimagine a Progressive Era’ “There is opportunity for reimagining a progressive era as it pertains to capitalism,” absolutely we see this as an opportunity to reshape the way we do business and how we govern.”
    3) May 07, 2020 “Gavin Newsom of California promises no return to normal until a vaccine is developed. Newsom told residents in his state not to expect life to go back to normal from the coronavirus pandemic until after a vaccine is rolled out.”
    4) Sep 27 2021 “Biden: We Need Up to 98% Vaccination Rate Before We Go Back to Normal”
    5) 9/29/2021 Fauci “It is likely, for a real complete regimen, that you would need at least a third dose”

  • This was one of your best editorials. Additionally, if our health bureaucracy were even slightly interested in better health outcomes, they would suggest people go outside without masks in the sunshine to increase their vitamin D levels, an easy way to help prevent covid and lessen the severity of infections; not to mention zinc and ivermectin (one of the safest drugs on the planet) and additional treatments that help to prevent and treat covid before one ends up in the hospital. Sadly our health bureaucracy is more interested in control and power than health.

About Issues & Insights

Issues & Insights is run by the seasoned journalists behind the legendary IBD Editorials page. Our goal is to bring our decades of combined journalism experience to help readers understand the top issues of the day. We’re doing this on a voluntary basis, because we believe the nation needs the kind of cogent, rational, data-driven, fact-based commentary that we can provide. 

We Could Use Your Help

Help us fight for honesty in journalism and against the tyranny of the left. Issues & Insights is published by the editors of what once was Investor's Business Daily's award-winning opinion pages. If you like what you see, leave a donation by clicking on donate button above. You can also set up regular donations if you like. Ad revenue helps, but your support will truly make a difference. (Please note that we are not set up as a charitable organization, so donations aren't tax deductible.) Thank you!
%d bloggers like this: