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Weekend Reads 5/2/20

The Dr. Fauci Of The 1918 Spanish Flu

It was in this role that Dr. Tuttle first learned to value science over unpopular public opinion. In 1909, Tuttle made headlines in local Montana newspapers—ironically, by coming out against quarantines—much to the consternation of the public. Smallpox had ravaged the population in the early 1900s, but Dr. Tuttle’s reasoning behind the order was that lifting quarantines would encourage people to vaccinate.

Big-government conservatives mount takeover of GOP

Before the crisis, Rubio, Hawley and their fellow Republican populists (the term applies more to Hawley than Rubio) seemed to amount to little more than a small group of legislators, a tight network of D.C. policy wonks, and some right-leaning opinion columnists. But when the pandemic struck, they were suddenly crafting the most consequential and interventionist legislation of the century. Now the question is whether they represent the future of the GOP — the rising stars who will define the party after Trump — or whether they are simply like firefighters called in for an emergency before the party defaults back to its traditional small-government worldview.

The Memo: The surprising popularity of the Great Lockdown

“I think the public has a sense that this is one of the most dangerous things we have ever faced as a country in any of their lifetimes,” said Larry Gostin, a Georgetown Law School professor who specializes in public health. “They are fearful. They see people dying, they see people suffering, and they don’t want to be one of them and they don’t want their family to be one of them.”

We Are Living in a Failed State

Trump acquired a federal government crippled by years of right-wing ideological assault, politicization by both parties, and steady defunding. He set about finishing off the job and destroying the professional civil service. He drove out some of the most talented and experienced career officials, left essential positions unfilled, and installed loyalists as commissars over the cowed survivors, with one purpose: to serve his own interests.

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