Back in March, Maine people faced an uncertain coronavirus threat. Some projections had 2.2 million people dying, meaning thousands in Maine.
Maine’s Chief Executive was able to act quickly to lock down Maine and bend what we thought was going to be a COVID-19 curve. Republicans supported the steps taken in the first few weeks when America prepared for the worst and our President took quick action.
Early on, the decades old emergency powers statute, along with modifications to the June Primary date, and scheduling of town meetings, was working as intended.
Mainers did what they needed to do, learned how to minimize risk and adjusted to COVID-19.
The wisdom of continuing to impose a lockdown of Maine life and our economy, in the absence of scientific data to support it, is increasingly questionable.
Consider these facts:
Maine was slow in providing daily numbers for negative COVID-19 tests. In mid-May, more than two months after the first confirmed case here, Maine was the only state in the country not compiling daily reports on the number of people tested.
Even as Maine has increased its testing to over 87,000, the average daily number of new cases continues to decline. In the week ending last Monday, the state averaged 23 new cases per day. It had an average of 32 new cases daily for the week ending June 15. Still no word on when the new mobile testing lab announced last May will be operational.
Maine’s 7 day positivity rate is 1.0%.
Dr. Shah recently announced that Maine has one of the lowest fatality rates in the country, and the lowest fatality rate in the Northeast. Lincoln, Oxford, Piscataquis, Sagadahoc, Somerset, and Washington counties have had no deaths from COVID-19.
Washington County has had zero deaths and zero hospitalizations. Washington County’s case count remains at 2.
Hospitalizations remain well below the peaks of 35 on April 7 and May 25. Today, only 10 individuals are hospitalized across the state due to COVID-19.
Maine has seen a sharp decline in new hospitalizations since the start of July. As of Sunday, the 7 day average for new hospitalizations was .3.
Maine is using less than 1% of the available ventilator capacity for COVID-19 patients. (4 ventilated – 702 available and alternative ventilators).
New daily cases have continued to trend down for over a month.
While tragic to the families and people who lost loved ones, Maine is one of the states that has been least affected from a coronavirus-related health standpoint.
In the face of these facts and other data, the Governor continues to make irrational, unilateral decisions that will affect us all for years to come.
The Governor is oblivious to the cries of people who have lost, or are about to lose, everything. She is unaware of increasing substance and domestic abuse, depression, suicide and rising anti-social behaviors affecting Mainers who need to work in order to pay bills.
Don’t expect most Maine news organizations to provide much context or question the Governor’s decisions.
With the exception of television stations, over and over, mainstream media decline to cover news of regular Maine citizens harmed by the Governor’s prolonged shutdown.
Many listeners are no doubt familiar with George Orwell’s dystopian novel ‘1984.’ The book warns of the dangers of absolute political authority and how fear and hate are used as a means of control.
In the book, government control is attained by:
Keeping people in a constant state of fear, so that they must trust their leaders to take care of them.
Using social conformity to control citizens.
Conducting daily hate rituals, where citizens are encouraged to be afraid of whichever figure is denigrated on the television screen. Through repetition, they accept, without question, whatever government solution is presented.
Keeping people under constant surveillance and getting citizens to inform on others for the good of the state.