Are Medical Mistakes the Leading Cause of Death in the US?



republished below in full unedited for informational, educational & research purposes:

Story at-a-glance

  • According to a 2011 Health Grades report, the incidence rate of medical harm occurring in the U.S. is estimated to be over 40,000 harmful and/or lethal errors daily
  • In 2014 10.5% of American doctors admitted they’d made a major medical mistake in the last three months
  • In 2016, Dr. Marty Makary published a report showing an estimated 250,000 Americans die from medical mistakes each year — about 1 in 10 patients — making it the third leading cause of death, right after cancer and heart disease
  • The World Health Organization’s Surgical Safety Checklist, developed by Makary, has been proven to reduce adverse event rates and save lives
  • In 2019, RaDonda Vaught, a registered nurse, was indicted for reckless homicide for administering the wrong drug to an elderly patient who died. She was found guilty and in May 2022, was sentenced to three years probation. It’s the first time a medical professional has been charged over a medical mistake that did not involve fraud or intentional malice. Many now worry this may prevent openness and transparency about unintentional medical mistakes

In July of 2000, I was still receiving a print subscription to JAMA (Journal of the American Medical Association) and I was shocked that they actually published an article1 from Barbara Starfield, who had an MPH (master of public health) from Johns Hopkins.

Why was I shocked? Because I looked at the data in the article (see below) physician mistakes were the third leading cause of death in the United States. My article on it went viral and that meme became very popular in 2000, but I was rarely acknowledged as the person who was responsible for it.

Deaths Per Year (From 2000)

  • 12,000 — unnecessary surgery
  • 7,000 — medication errors in hospitals
  • 20,000 — other errors in hospitals
  • 80,000 — infections in hospitals
  • 106,000 — non-error, negative effects of drugs

These total 225,000 deaths per year from physician or health care mistakes and are only surpassed by heart disease and cancer.

Starfield's Ironic Tragedy — A Victim to What She Chronicled

Ironically, Starfield became a statistic to her own research. She died suddenly in June 2011, a death her husband attributed to the adverse effects of the blood thinner Plavix taken in combination with aspirin. However, her death certificate makes no mention of this possibility. In the August 2012 issue of Archives for Internal Medicine2 her husband, Dr. Neil A. Holtzman, writes, in part:

"Writing in sorrow and anger, I express up front my potential conflict of interest in interpreting the facts surrounding the death of my wife, Dr. Barbara Starfield ... Because she died while swimming alone, an autopsy was required. The immediate cause of death was 'pool drowning,' but the underlying condition, 'cerebral hemorrhage,' stunned me ...

Barbara started taking low-dose aspirin after coronary insufficiency had been diagnosed three years before her death, and clopidogrel bisulfate (Plavix) after her right main coronary artery had been stented six months after the diagnosis.

She reported to the cardiologist that she bruised more easily while taking clopidogrel and bled longer following minor cuts. She had no personal or family history of bleeding tendency or hypertension.

The autopsy findings and the official lack of feedback prompted me to call attention to deficiencies in medical care and clinical research in the United States reified by Barbara's death and how the deficiencies can be rectified. Ironically, Barbara had written about all of them."

2022 Updated Medical Mistakes Stats

The video above features an interview between Dr. Peter Attia and Dr. Marty Makary, a professor of surgery at Johns Hopkins, in which they discuss the prevalence of medical mistakes in conventional medicine and advancements in patient safety.

Makary is also a public health researcher, a member of the National Academy of Medicine, the editor-in-chief of MedPage Today (the second-largest trade publication in medicine), and the author of two best-selling books.

As a busy surgeon, Makary has worked in many of the best hospitals in the country and can testify to the power of modern medicine. But he’s also witnessed a medical culture that leaves surgical sponges inside patients, amputates the wrong limb, overdoses patients because of sloppy handwriting, or enters prescriptions into the wrong patient chart.

Medical Mistakes Are Commonplace

According to a 2011 Health Grades report,3 the incidence rate of medical harm occurring in the U.S. was estimated to be over 40,000 harmful and/or lethal errors daily. Makary cites a 2014 Mayo Clinic survey of 6,500 American doctors, 10.5% of whom admitted they’d made a major medical mistake in the last three months.

He also cites a 2015 study by researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital that showed about half of all operations involved some kind of medication error. That study and corresponding press release have since been removed and are no longer available online, Makary says. Possibly because the hospital was embarrassed by the results. 

In 2016, Makary and his research team published a report showing an estimated 250,000 Americans die from medical mistakes each year4 — about 1 in 10 patients — which (at that time) made it the third leading cause of death, right after cancer and heart disease.

According to Makary, that number may be higher, because the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention does not collect vital statistics on medical errors. Death cannot be recorded as a medical error as there’s no code for it.

Of course, since they didn’t do autopsies on every death, that number could also be lower, so the final estimate they came up with was between 125,000 and 350,000 deaths per year.

Another widely-cited study5 published in 2013 estimated the annual death toll for medical mistakes in the U.S. at 400,000 a year,6 Makary says. But whatever the true number, and whether it’s the third cause of death or the ninth, medical mistakes are clearly a serious and too-frequent problem.

An estimated 30% of all medical procedures, tests, and medications may also be completely unnecessary,7, and each of these unnecessary interventions opens the door for a medical mistake that didn’t need to happen.

Many doctors have long been concerned about the frequency of medical mistakes, unnecessary testing, and overtreatment, but the culture was such that it dissuaded open discussion and transparency.

It’s really only in the past decade or so that doctors and hospital administrators have started being more honest about these problems. Now, a case (discussed below) in which a nurse was charged and found guilty of negligent homicide after accidentally administering the wrong medication threatens to undo much of that progress.

Milestones in Patient Safety

In medical jargon, a “near-miss” refers to a medical mistake that could have resulted in patient harm but didn’t, and a “preventable adverse event” refers to a medical mistake that does result in harm to the patient.

A “never event” is one that should never happen, regardless of circumstance. One example of a “never event” would be leaving a surgical instrument or sponge inside the patient.

In 2008, Medicare decided it would no longer pay for “never events,” in an effort to de-incentivize sloppiness. Shortly thereafter, private insurance companies followed suit. The following year, in 2009, the World Health Organization organized a committee to address patient safety, as, worldwide, it was becoming apparent that many patients were dying from the care and not just from disease.

At the time, Makary had just published a surgery checklist for Johns Hopkins, and the WHO invited him to present it to the newly formed committee on patient safety. This checklist eventually became known as the WHO Surgical Safety Checklist.8 To this day, it hangs on operating room walls across the world.

Later investigations have revealed this pre-op checklist does in fact reduce adverse event rates and save lives. If a loved one is in the hospital, print it out, bring it with you and confirm that each of the 19 items has been done.

This can help you protect your family member or friend from preventable errors in care. It’s available in several languages, including Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian, Spanish, Portuguese, Farsi, German, Italian, Norwegian, and Swedish.

Opioid Overdose Is a Leading Death Among Young Adults

As of 2017, opioid overdoses have been the leading cause of death among Americans under the age of 50.9 The most common drugs involved in prescription opioid overdose deaths are methadone, oxycodone (such as OxyContin®), and hydrocodone (such as Vicodin®).10

Lawsuits that have made their way through the judicial system in recent years have shown opioid makers such as Purdue Pharma, owned by the Sackler family, knew they were lying when they claimed opioids — which are chemically very similar to heroin — have an exceptionally low addiction rate when taken by people with pain.

As a result of their lies, doctors handed out opioids for pain as if they were candy. Even Makary admits to being fooled by the fraudulent PR. “That is a form of a medical mistake,” he says, adding “I’m guilty of it myself. I gave opioids out like candy, and I feel terrible about it.”

In recent years, the medical industry has cracked down on prescription opioids, making them harder to obtain, but many patients still struggle with addiction, and fentanyl-laced products obtained illegally are still causing many unnecessary deaths.

The RaDonda Vaught Case

In this interview, Makary also reviews the RaDonda Vaught case which, as mentioned earlier might reverse much of the progress achieved with regard to openness and transparency about medical mistakes.

Vaught was hired as a nurse at Vanderbilt hospital in 2015. Two years later, on Christmas eve in 2017, she was taking care of a patient named Charlene Murphy, a 75-year-old woman admitted for a subdural hematoma (a brain bleed). Murphy made a rapid recovery and after two days she was ready to go home.

The doctor ordered one last scan while she was in the hospital, so Vaught brought her to the scanner and ordered Versed (midazolam), a sedative commonly used to help the patient lay still. The hospital had installed an automated drug dispensary system, the alerts of which often had to be overridden due to poor coordination between the electronic health records and the pharmacy.

On this fateful day, Vaught typed “ve” into the system to pull up Versed, but by default, the system populated the search with “vecuronium,” a potent paralyzing agent. Vaught didn’t realize the mistake and overrode the alert. Now, vecuronium is a powder, and most experienced nurses would know that Versed is a liquid.

Vaught, however, didn’t catch the discrepancy and suspended the powder with saline as indicated and gave it to Murphy, who subsequently died inside the scanner.

“The nurse [Vaught] immediately feels horrible; says exactly what she did, recognized her mistake as the patient was deteriorating, and felt ‘I may have caused this,’” Makary says. “[She] admitted [and] reported this whole thing; was 100% honest. I mean, [she] even said, subsequently, that her life will never be the same, that she feels that a piece of her has died.”

In 2019, Vaught was indicted for reckless homicide.11,12 She was found guilty and in May 2022, was sentenced to three years probation with judicial diversion,13 which means her criminal record can be expunged if she serves her probationary period with good behavior. Her nursing license was also revoked.

Should Medical Mistakes Be Prosecuted?

Now, while Vaught immediately admitted her mistake, Vanderbilt hospital, for its part, appears to have been trying to cover it up.

“Vanderbilt had documentation where two neurologists listed the cause of death as the brain bleed. It was deemed, essentially, a natural cause of death. This was reported to the medical examiner,” Makary says.

An investigation by the Tennessean revealed Vanderbilt did not report the death to state or federal officials as a preventable adverse event, as is required by law. Instead, they fired Vaught and immediately negotiated an out-of-court settlement with the family, which included a gag order.

So, it wasn’t the family that brought charges against Vaught but rather a team of district attorneys in Davidson county. Vaught’s case is the first of its kind and has triggered emotional reactions across the country among doctors and nurses alike, as everyone knows how easily and frequently medical mistakes occur.

According to the Tennessean, “The case has put a spotlight on how nurses should be held accountable for medical mistakes.” But should they? Never before has a medical professional been criminally charged for a medical mistake that didn’t involve intentional fraud or malice. As noted by Makary:

“One of the principles of patient safety that we have been advocating throughout the entire 23 years of the patient safety movement in America has been the concept ‘just culture’ — a doctrine which says that honest mistakes should not be penalized ... That is a doctrine that has enabled people to speak up about this epidemic of medical mistakes in the United States ...

In my opinion, we have had decades of progress in patient safety, about 23 healthy years of significant improvements in the culture of safety and the way we approach safety, undone with a single group of assistant young district attorneys that decided to go after one individual at the exclusion of doing anything about a hospital that, unlike the nurse, did not admit to anything initially and broke the law.

There's a preliminary statistic that 1 in 5 nurses are quitting during the pandemic. Now, some of that is pandemic burnout, some of it's a number of [other] factors, but a lot of nurses are leaving the profession and there's this feeling that they don't feel valued, and this [case] has been a bit of a smack in their face.

So, hospitals around the country that are dealing with critical nursing staffing shortages are trying to pay attention to the concerns that nurses have about this case. I have talked to lawmakers at the state level in different states who are thinking about passing protections for nurses. It’s delicate, but this is now a conversation that has surfaced.”

The U.S. Is an Unmitigated Failure at Treating Chronic Illness

The U.S. has the most expensive health care in the world, spending more on health care than the next 10 biggest spenders combined (Japan, Germany, France, China, the U.K., Italy, Canada, Brazil, Spain, and Australia). If the U.S. health care system were a country, it would be the sixth-largest economy on the entire planet.

Despite that, the U.S. ranks last in health and mortality when compared with 17 other developed nations. We may have one of the best systems for treating acute surgical emergencies, but the American medical system is clearly an unmitigated failure when it comes to treating chronic illness.

The fact that properly prescribed and administered drugs kill well over 100,000 every year in the U.S. should really be food for some serious thought. For starters, drug safety needs to become a priority, not an afterthought.

Indeed, one of Starfield's points of contention was the lack of systematic recording and studying of adverse events, and her own death highlights this problem. It was the Plavix-aspirin combination that actually killed her, yet if it hadn't been for an autopsy and her husband insisting on an adverse event report, no one would ever have been the wiser about such a connection.

Only a tiny fraction of all adverse drug reactions are ever reported to the FDA; according to some estimates, as few as 1%. In order to truly alert the FDA to a problem with a product they've approved, they must be notified by as many people as possible who believe they have experienced a side effect.

By filing a report, you help make medicine safer for everyone. So, if you believe you've experienced a side effect from a drug, please report it. Simply go to the FDA Consumer Complaint Coordinator page, find the phone number listed for your state, and report your adverse reaction.

In all, preventable medical mistakes may account for one-sixth of all deaths that occur in the U.S. annually.14 To put these numbers into even further perspective, medical mistakes in American hospitals kill four jumbo jets' worth of people each week.15

According to statistics published in a 2011 Health Grades report,16 the incidence rate of medical harm occurring in the U.S. may be as high as 40,000 harmful and/or lethal errors DAILY. According to co-author John T. James, Ph.D.:17

"Perhaps it is time for a national patient bill of rights for hospitalized patients. All evidence points to the need for much more patient involvement in identifying harmful events and participating in rigorous follow-up investigations to identify root causes."

Many Tests and Treatments Do More Harm Than Good

Overtesting and overtreatment are also part of the problem. Instead of dissuading patients from unnecessary or questionable interventions, the system rewards waste and incentivizes disease over health.

According to a report by the Institute of Medicine, an estimated 30% of all medical procedures, tests and medications may in fact be unnecessary, at a cost of at least $750 billion a year.18 To learn which tests and interventions may do more harm than good, browse through the Choosing Wisely website.

It's also important to be aware that many novel medical treatments gain popularity over older standards of care due mostly to clever marketing, as opposed to solid science. An investigation by the Mayo Clinic published in 2013 proved this point. To determine the overall effectiveness of our medical care, researchers tracked the frequency of medical reversals over the past decade.

They found that reversals are common across all classes of medical practice, and a significant proportion of medical treatments offer no patient benefit at all.

In fact, they found 146 reversals of previously established practices,19 treatments, and procedures over the previous 10 years. The most telling data in the report show just how many common medical treatments are doing more harm than good. Of the studies that tested an existing standard of care, 40.2% reversed the practice, compared to only 38% reaffirming it.

The remaining 22% were inconclusive. This means that anywhere between 40 and 78% of the medical testing, treatments, and procedures you receive are of NO benefit to you — or are actually harmful — as determined by clinical studies.

Safeguarding Your Care While Hospitalized

Knowing that medical errors can and do frequently occur, what can you do to ensure your safety, or the safety of a loved one, who has to go to the hospital? Makary offers the following suggestions:

“Every hospital has a patient relations department and if things just don't seem right, if you feel that you're not communicating effectively with your care team, if you feel care is not coordinated, if you have a concern or there was an error, you can call the patient relations department. They’ve got somebody on call 24/7. That's basically a standard thing in the hospitals now.

It’s important to have an advocate with you anytime you get medical care or you've got a loved one in the hospital. It's amazing how it seems that the care is just overall much better, holistic, comprehensive and coordinated when there's a family member or loved one there, taking notes, asking questions ...

Ask about the medication that's being given to you. You should know what it is and what it's for, and you should ask your doctor or whoever walks in the room if they've washed their hands ...

This is the sort of new dialogue that we are trying to promote to make the patient a participant in their care and not just a bystander. When you do it, what I’ve noticed the more educated they are, or their surrogate is, the better the care is. You are in the middle of a very complicated system of care when you're in the hospital. The more you can be aware of what's happening, the safer the care.”

Once you're hospitalized, you're immediately at risk for medical errors, so one of the best safeguards is to have someone there with you. Dr. Andrew Saul has written an entire book20 on the issue of safeguarding your health while hospitalized.

Frequently, you're going to be relatively debilitated, especially post-op when you're under the influence of anesthesia, and you won't have the opportunity to see the types of processes that are going on. This is particularly important for pediatric patients and the elderly.

It's important to have a personal advocate present to ask questions and take notes. For every medication given in the hospital, ask questions such as: "What is this medication? What is it for? What's the dose?" Most people, doctors, and nurses included, are more apt to go through that extra step of due diligence to make sure they're getting it right if they know they'll be questioned about it.

If someone you know is scheduled for surgery, you can print out the WHO surgical safety checklist and implementation manual, which is part of the campaign "Safe Surgery Saves Lives." The checklist can be downloaded free of charge here. If a loved one is in the hospital, print it out and bring it with you, as this can help you protect your family member or friend from preventable errors in care.

Biden Signs Executive Order to Counter “Attacks” on LGBTQ Rights, Transgender Youth

Biden Signs Executive Order to Counter “Attacks” on LGBTQ Rights, Transgender Youth



republished below in full unedited for informational, educational & research purposes:

President Biden signed an executive order on Wednesday that takes direct aim at efforts by Republican legislatures and governors such as Ron DeSantis and Greg Abbott to protect youth from transgender ideology and gender-transition treatments.

Biden’s order, signed “in celebration of Pride Month,” calls on the Department of Health and Human Services to ban federally funded programs from offering conversion therapy. The order also enlists the Federal Trade Commission to consider whether conversion therapy “constitutes an unfair or deceptive act or practice” and to prepare consumer warnings on such practices when appropriate. It also calls on the secretary of state to work with the secretary of the Treasury, the secretary of HHS, and the administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) to help promote the end of conversion therapy around the world.

It also calls for efforts to protect foster youth and prevent homelessness for transgender individuals.

The order instructs the sectary of HHS to take “steps to address the barriers and exclusionary policies” that would restrict access to various types of healthcare and treatment, namely gender-transition treatments.

Among the many provisions listed in the order is a requirement that the Secretary of Education uses the Department of Education’s authorities to “support LGBTQI+ students, their families, educators, and other school personnel targeted by harmful State and local laws and practices, and shall promote the adoption of promising policies and practices to support the safety, well-being, and rights of LGBTQI+ students.” The order states the Secretary of Education must develop and release sample policies for the well-being and academic success of supporting LGBTQI+ students within 200 days of the order.

According to the White House press release for the executive order, the measure is intended to address the more than “300 anti-LGBTQI+ laws” that have been introduced by state legislatures over the last year.

During the signing ceremony at which Biden signed the June 15 order, he took direct aim at the DeSantis administration’s move to ask state boards regulating doctors to ban Medicaid coverage for minors seeking gender transition care such as hormone therapies, puberty blockers, and gender reassignment surgeries, and at efforts by Governor Greg Abbott in Texas to urge authorities to investigate parents of transgender minors for possible child abuse if they provide their children with gender-affirming care.

“I don’t have to tell you about the ultra-MAGA agenda attacking families and our freedoms — 300 discriminatory bills introduced in states across this country,” Biden said at the White House event. “In Texas, knocking on front doors to harass and investigate parents who are raising transgender children. In Florida, going after Mickey Mouse, for God’s sake.“

Brock Juarez, communications director for DeSantis’ Agency of Health Care Administration, responded to Biden’s executive order in a statement to Newsweek.

“It’s ironic that the Biden administration continues to claim their policies only support ‘affirming care’ while simultaneously defending and promoting permanent, harmful, and irreversible sex-change operations for children,” Juarez said. “We have remained consistent that in Florida we must protect children and parental rights, and our Medicaid program should not be paying for medical experiments.”

As far as the executive order’s reach, the New York Post observed that it’s not “immediately clear” whether HHS will directly challenge states that are pursuing restrictions for gender-affirming healthcare for minors under the executive order.

Despite the self-serving virtue-signaling by Democrats such as Biden, the American Academy of Pediatrics continues to assert that transgender interventions are harmful to children.

“There is not a single long-term study to demonstrate the safety or efficacy of puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones, and surgeries for transgender-believing youth,” the group wrote on its website. The site goes on to state that puberty blockers may, in fact, cause mental illness and permanent physical harm, including increased risk of heart attacks, strokes, diabetes, blood clots, and various cancers.

And the American Academy of Pediatrics is not alone in its assessment.

As the organization notes on its webpage,

Many medical organizations around the world, including the Australian College of Physicians, the Royal College of General Practitioners in the United Kingdom, and the Swedish National Council for Medical Ethics have characterized these interventions in children as experimental and dangerous. World renowned Swedish psychiatrist Dr. Christopher Gillberg has said that pediatric transition is “possibly one of the greatest scandals in medical history” and called for “an immediate moratorium on the use of puberty blocker drugs because of their unknown long-term effects.”

A number of medical professionals have risked being ostracized for speaking out against the prevailing transgender ideology.

In an article titled, “No One is Born in ‘The Wrong Body’,” endocrinologist William J. Malone; Colin M. Wright, Ph.D., biologist and Eberly Research Fellow at Penn State University; and Julia D. Robertson, journalist, award-winning author, and Senior Editor of The Velvet Chronicle, observe,  

Historical data suggests that about 0.5% of children develop gender dysphoria — distress caused by a perceived incongruence between one’s biological sex and gender presentation. Reinforcing studies in the medical literature show that, as children get older, childhood-onset gender dysphoria resolves (i.e. ends) in most cases. As two authors put it in a 2016 International Review of Psychiatry article, “the conclusion from these studies is that childhood GD [gender dysphoria] is strongly associated with a lesbian, gay or bisexual outcome and that for the majority of the children (85.2%; 270 out of 317 [studied individuals]) the gender dysphoric feelings remitted around or after puberty.”

Yet instead of offering counseling, medical professionals now are commonly telling children that they may have been “born in the wrong body.” This new approach, called “gender affirmation,” makes gender dysphoria less likely to resolve, pushing children down the path toward irreversible medical and surgical interventions. If aggressive transition options are pursued early in puberty, the combination of puberty-blocking drugs, followed by cross sex hormones, will result in permanent infertility.

But these assessments from medical professionals have not been enough to convince the “woke” Left that children should not be used as pawns in the fight to advance their political agenda. Even when the World Professional Association for Transgender Health, which still espouses a mostly “woke” view of transgenderism in youth, released a draft of new guidelines suggesting that transgender teens receive more extensive mental-health screenings before receiving hormones or gender surgeries, The New York Times went out of its way to dispute the organization’s findings.

Biden Issues Fascist-style Threats to Oil Companies

Biden Issues Fascist-style Threats to Oil Companies



republished below in full unedited for informational, educational & research purposes:

Wednesday’s interview between Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm and CNN anchor John Berman — in which they discussed the letter that President Biden recently sent to several major oil companies — powerfully illustrates the fascist economic views Biden harbors.

“At a time of war, refinery profit margins well above normal being passed directly onto American families are not acceptable,” Biden said in his letter to the executives of British Petroleum, Chevron, Marathon Petroleum, Phillips 66, Shell, Valero Energy, and Exxon Mobil. “There is no question,” Biden asserted in the letter, “that Vladimir Putin is principally responsible for the intense financial pain the American people and their families are bearing. But amid a war that has raised gasoline prices more than $1.70 per gallon, historically high refinery profit margins are worsening that pain.”

Ominously, Biden threatened to use “emergency authorities” if the companies do not follow his dictates. “Your companies and others have an opportunity to take immediate actions to increase the supply of gasoline, diesel, and other refined products you are producing,” Biden wrote. “My administration is prepared to use all reasonable and appropriate Federal Government tools and emergency authorities to increase refinery capacity and output in the near term, and to ensure that every region of this country is appropriately supplied.”

This is economic fascism.

It’s true that “fascist” is thrown around far too loosely in today’s political discourse, but, economically speaking, fascism is a form of socialism. (Adolf Hitler’s party was known as the National Socialist Party, and the systems in Italy under Benito Mussolini’s Fascist government and in Germany under Hitler were very similar.)

Under socialism, the government owns the means of production, whereas, under a fascist economic system, the government generally leaves ownership of businesses in private hands, but dictates prices and wages, hours, production levels, and even what is produced. In other words, as a business owner, you might retain title to your business, but the government tells you how to run your business. What Biden is threatening is certainly not free enterprise.

Biden is not the only American president who has threatened American business owners who did not comply with governmental dictates. For example, President John F. Kennedy bullied United States Steel to lower its prices in the early 1960s. During the administration of President Jimmy Carter, Congress passed the “Windfall Profits Tax” to punish oil companies for making what were considered too high profits.

Just recently, Biden issued an executive order under the Defense Production Act for American companies to use more production resources to increase the supply of baby formula. Of course, the policies of the federal government created the low supply of baby formula in the first place. Be that as it may, Biden used a law that was passed during the administration of President Harry Truman to allow the president to order private businesses to shift resources during a time of war. Such a takeover of private business is bad enough during wartime, but in Biden’s case, there was no war. The only action that government really needs to take to increase the production of a good that is in high demand is to get out of the way. Businesses are in business to make money. No one has to tell them to increase production when there are people who want to buy their product.

When Ronald Reagan became president in 1981, gasoline prices were quite high. He almost immediately used a law Congress had passed previously to end federal government control of oil prices. Oil companies raised prices at first and quickly increased production, which, as anyone with an elementary knowledge of economics understands, soon brought prices at the gas pump down for American consumers. Reagan did not threaten oil companies; he simply got out of their way.

In this present case, Biden is not only taking the opposite approach, he is being hypocritical.

As CNN anchor Berman told Granholm on his program New Day, the Biden administration has “made it clear from day one they want to transition America from reliance upon oil and gas, and they have even celebrated the current gas price crisis for accelerating that transition. But how can you simultaneously demonize oil companies and demand more oil production?”

In fact, John Kerry, Biden’s special envoy for climate, said just last week that “energy security worry is driving” the thinking that there is a need for additional drilling and for going “back to coal.” However, Kerry made it clear that he does not want additional drilling.

“No we don’t. We absolutely don’t,” Kerry insisted, adding, “we have to prevent a false narrative from entering into this.”

Bluntly put, it was the policies enacted by Biden and Kerry, coupled with sanctions on Russian oils and gas, that have caused the spike in oil and gasoline prices, not anything the big oil companies or Vladimir Putin have done. Some speculate that these policies were enacted because the Biden administration wants oil prices to go up so high that Americans will be willing to shift from gasoline and diesel to electric vehicles — all in the name of fighting “climate change.”

Berman asked Granholm, “Five years from now, 10 years from now, are you telling me you want them drilling for more oil? You want the refineries putting out more gasoline in five or 10 years?” Berman added, “Why would oil companies invest in producing more oil if such an investment will be turned to waste in just a few years?”

This is not a question of whether automobiles should be run by gasoline or electricity. The free market will make that decision. If electric cars become practical and affordable for the masses, then consumers will willingly switch over to them, away from petroleum-based energy.

But the Biden administration has decided that the federal government should simply dictate that transition, regardless of market considerations. That is economic fascism. And in this case, blaming oil companies, and threatening them, for a policy that they did not create, is the height of hypocrisy.

The Left Will Devour Itself: ELCA Calls for Resignation of Trans Bishop—But Not for the Reason You Think



republished below in full unedited for informational, educational & research purposes:

The advent of intersectionalism must make being a leftist more confusing than ever. The hierarchy of grievances and identities must be difficult to keep up with. It’s surprising that there aren’t more crashes at the intersections of intersectionalism.

I’ve long believed that the left will eventually devour itself as one offense to tolerance crashes up against another. We’re seeing this take place in the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America, a far-left denomination that has proven what happens when LBGTQetc issues collide with racial and ethnic concerns — with a sprinkle of neurodivergence thrown in for good measure.

In the ELCA’s Sierra Pacific Synod, which covers Northern California (naturally) and parts of Nevada, the church has asked its first transgender bishop to resign over accusations of racism against the Hispanic community.

Bishop Megan Rohrer is under fire for removing a Hispanic pastor on the Feast of Our Lady Guadalupe, one of the holiest days of the year for Hispanic Christians.

(Disclaimer: I’m really confused about Rohrer. I can’t tell if the bishop is a male transitioning to female or vice versa. Rohrer’s Twitter bio features “they/he” pronouns, but I just don’t know. Since I don’t know which correct pronouns — as opposed to “preferred” pronouns — to use, I’ll simply refer to Rohrer without pronouns.)

Although the offending event took place in December, Bishop Elizabeth Eaton, head of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, waited for the “listening team,” a left-wing term if I’ve ever heard one, to release its report. And it’s all so confusing with preferred pronouns and changing terms for ethnicities.

Related: Wokeism Is a Religion Without Grace

It’s best if you’re sitting down for this one.

Rohrer fired Rev. Nelson Rabell-González of Misión Latina Luterana in Stockton, Calif., on Dec. 12. after “continual communications of verbal harassment and retaliatory actions from more than a dozen victims from 2019 to the present.” The removal took place on the Feast of Our Lady Guadalupe, which commemorates the visitation of the Virgin Mary to a Mexican man in the 16th century.

Emily McFarlan Miller of Religion News Service reports that “Rabell-González acknowledged allegations against him, saying he was accused of ‘verbally mistreating a pastoral intern and members of the church staff’ in a previous position at a different church.”

Oddly enough, one of the complaints against the pastor is that he was too woke.

“The pastor, who is Afro-Caribbean, said he had been asked to resign from that church and sign a nondisclosure agreement, which he declined after members complained about his support for Black Lives Matter and immigrant rights,” Miller writes.

So to summarize where we are so far: a pastor who may or may not have a problem with verbally abusing interns but also may or may not be a little too far to the left for parishioners’ tastes was going to have to resign. It all got worse when the transgender bishop showed up to do the deed on a holy day for Hispanic Christians.

Here’s how Alejandra Molina of the Religion News Service describes the scene:

As the report details, the Misión Latina Luterana congregation in Stockton, California, had no idea about Rabell-González’s removal until members noticed he wasn’t the one leading the Dec. 12 worship service and celebration. Instead, the Rev. Hazel Salazar-Davidson — whose opposition to the pastor’s removal that day is detailed in an attachment of the report — was directed by Rohrer to lead the service. Congregants began questioning out loud about his whereabouts.

Rohrer, who was at the service, didn’t offer further explanations after congregants were informed of his removal, according to the report. Parishioners described Rohrer’s facial expression as a “smirk” that made them feel “small, attacked and humiliated,” but the report also noted that “such an expression on the face of an autistic person is often a response to the stress of a situation.”

Rohrer actually attempted to hide behind the old “neurodivergent” chestnut as an excuse for the smirk as these shocked churchgoers reacted to the sudden dismissal of their pastor. I have a hard time believing that the ELCA would put a bishop in charge of a synod if they didn’t believe that the bishop could keep such “neurodivergent” behavior in check.

The New York Post reports that the congregation was upset at the announcement and that Rohrer wore a bulletproof vest to the church for Rabell-González’s firing.

At least Rohrer issued an apology shortly after the incident occurred.

“Today I ask forgiveness for the ways my action and inactions caused pain, grief, and anxiety for the Latino/x/é community,” Rohrer wrote. (And no, I didn’t hit some wrong keys on my keyboard.) “I understand that trust can be lost with one action and must be rebuilt with hundreds of trustworthy actions. I am grateful to all who have educated me about the needs of the Latino/x/é community and remain committed to doing the work needed to repair relationships. The Sierra Pacific Synod and I seek to be ever-reforming in our anti-racism and anti-bias work.”

Extraordinary Lutheran Ministries, a “queer” ELCA organization, dismissed Rohrer’s membership shortly afterward, criticizing Rohrer’s behavior “specifically as it pertains to being an anti-racist organization.”

The “listening team” (sorry, I can’t type that without chuckling) issued its report, which also overflows with intersectional terminology and explanations.

“The reader should note that the italicized pronouns they/them/their, meant to express use in a singular form when referring to an individual’s preferred pronoun, will be used throughout the document. Additionally, the affected Latiné community has changed names during its journey…” the report explains in a note at the beginning.

Yes. “Latiné” was a new one for me too.

Recommended: Insufficiently Woke Environmental Group Struggles With Accusations of Transphobia

After a whopping 23 pages, the report’s conclusion sounds like the “listening team” has done plenty of listening — to Robin DiAngelo and Ibrahim X. Kendi.

“A person who behaves in passive or uninformed ways that are racist is like someone who is standing still on the walkway,” the team writes. “No conscious effort is being made to walk toward racism, but the person is being carried along to the same destination.”

“Some people may become so distressed by the movement into active racism, that they choose to turn around and walk in the opposite direction,” the report continues. “But unless they are walking more quickly than the speed of the walkway — unless they are very intentionally anti-racist — they will find themselves still carried along with the others.”

At the end of the investigation “listening,” Bishop Elizabeth Eaton determined that Rohrer needed to resign. And so Rohrer did so, a scant 13 months after becoming the first transgender bishop in the ELCA.

What have we learned today? As Dr. Albert Mohler put it on his podcast, “as you’re thinking about all the incredible moral confusion here, that’s really what we need to see.”

When intersectionality is part of your modus operandi, you might come across scenarios where one grievance group clashes with another. In the ongoing struggle of left-wing cultures, one group will win over the other. It has to, and I can’t help but think we’ll expect to see skirmishes like these more often on the left. And then how long will it be before their whole coalition spins apart?