It’s good to be Clarence Thomas and other commentary

Conservative: It’s Good To Be Clarence Thomas

At 72, cheers The Wall Street Journal’s Bill McGurn, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas “is coming into his own.” That’s as a result of conservatives’ 6-3 majority on the court docket means Chief Justice John Roberts switching sides and voting with the liberals gained’t be sufficient to win the day — and Thomas, along with his seniority, would then get to write the bulk opinion. Thomas has made “powerful contributions” by his dissents, concurrences and other commentary, so now Roberts “has an incentive to side with conservatives so he can write a majority opinion more narrow than what Justice Thomas would likely write.” On the ­Supreme Court, it’s “good to be chief” — however “right now it may be better to be Clarence Thomas.”

Conspiracy beat: Randi Pushes Crackpot Theory

American Federation of Teachers boss Randi Weingarten “endorsed the theory that Rebekah Jones was fired” as a Florida “Health Department dashboard manager last year, because she refused to artificially lower the state’s reported COVID deaths,” reports National Review’s Zachary ­Evans. In an “exchange with journalist Samuel Bravo,” Weingarten mentioned Gov. Ron DeSantis “lies and fires people,” citing Jones and asserting that Florida has “been hiding cases” — and she didn’t again down when NR questioned her. In actuality, Jones’ claims have been decisively debunked. Notes Evans: “Weingarten and the AFT have pushed to keep schools closed” for a yr, “claiming that in-person learning would lead to a rise in community transmission, though data drawn from Florida” and other locations that reopened colleges present in any other case.

From the left: Don’t Deify ‘Fact-Checking’

The Poynter Institute’s PolitiFact has withdrawn its “Pants on Fire” ruling on claims that COVID-19 could have originated in a Chinese lab after ­“officials and mainstream press shut down most every discussion on that score” for a yr, notes Matt Taibbi at TK News. This flags a bigger downside: Many shops “trumpet fact-checking programs as a way of advertising a dedication to ‘truth,’ ” when the actual work is “less about determining fact than about preventing the vast seas of ignorance underlying most professional news operations from seeping into public view.” The “press mostly mishandled COVID-19 reporting,” treating “critical issues” reminiscent of masks use and lockdowns “as culture-war narratives” and “using the misguided notion that the news is an exact science to promote the worse misconception that science is an exact science.” We “look like jerks pretending we can fact-check the universe. We’d do better admitting what we don’t know.”

Foreign desk: Biden’s Indefensible Iran Cave

“Reviving a fatally flawed, outdated deal that strengthens the world’s top terrorist regime should not be President Biden’s objective,” declare Mike Waltz and Len Khodorkovsky at The National Interest. Team Trump introduced Tehran “to the weakest point since the 1979 Islamic Revolution,” with 20 nations halting oil imports and 100 firms leaving the Iranian market. Regime leaders estimate US sanctions price Iran $200 billion. “That’s $200 billion less to fund its terrorism abroad and atrocities at home.” Too unhealthy Biden ceded this huge “advantage.”

Expert: ‘Stop Trusting the Experts!’

At RealClearPolitics, computer scientist Bruce Abramson poses robust questions for these mindlessly mouthing “Follow the science”: “How are data collected and reported? What theories guided the design of the models that process the raw data? What studies validated the models? How sensitive are the models to variations in inputs?” And so on. “Anyone surprised by such questions can’t plausibly claim to understand the science, much less to follow it. Most likely, they’ve confused ‘the science’ with a selected scientist, a claimed scientific consensus, or the scientific establishment. Or, worse, partisan politics masquerading as science.” That, sadly, is precisely what occurred in the course of the pandemic. Few Americans who “trusted Dr. Anthony Fauci” to make “drastic impositions on our lives” understand they’re not following “the science” however “an idiosyncratic” immunologist.

— Compiled by The Post Editorial Board

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