Q&A – To Cruise Or Not To Cruise? That Is Florida’s Question

Today’s entry: What I don’t get with the cruise debate and what I haven’t heard discussed is why the CDC’s saying 95% of passengers have to get vaccinated to cruise. Where’d that come from? We went from 70% for herd immunity to 100% for “vaccine passports” internationally to 95%. I would think DeSantis could win the lawsuit based on the number seemingly being made up anyway. 

Bottom Line: All of this is arbitrary. All of this is made up. Even if the number were 100% as is the case in Europe for cruises to sail, what have you really accomplished? What I mean by that this is, what’s the proven efficacy against infection of the most effective vaccines? 95% with the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines, right? So, let’s say that you have 100% of your passengers vaccinated with only the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines. That still means that if exposed to COVID-19, 5 out of every 100 are likely to contract it. You haven’t prevented an outbreak on a ship at that point you’ve only mitigated it and not knowing who the next five out of a hundred are what happens then? But that’s using the most effective vaccines.

Consider this. The Johnson and Johnson vaccine is only proven to be 66% effective at preventing infection, yet the CDC and foreign governments treat it the same as the Moderna and Pfizer. So, under the same scenario, you could potentially have 34 out of every 100 passengers who have been fully vaccinated contract the virus. To your point, how does that make any sense in regard to the CDC’s 95% vaccination mandate? What does that really mean anyway when vaccine efficacy varies considerably? So yes, the only thing that’s 100% here, is the reality that all of this policy is arbitrary at a certain level.

As for an explanation, this is explained under the “Quarantine and Isolation” section on the CDC’s website, because that inspires confidence, under the subheading of “Cruise Ship Guidance”. Several pages into the CDC’s mandates for cruises they list the 95% mandate. They offer no official explanation. Now, aside from the dynamics we’ve discussed, there’s another point altogether that currently matters more if cruises are to be sailing from Florida’s ports later this month. 

There’s been a lot of confusion regarding what the state of Florida is suing the CDC over. The suit isn’t about the percentage of people who they say must be vaccinated or even the vaccine passport concept itself. The state of Florida is suing the CDC over their “no sail” order. The DeSantis administration's case is that the Centers for Disease Control retains no authority to dictate whether ships can sail under any circumstances. 

As of yesterday, there's another point. Mediation was ordered in May by a federal court overseeing the case. The Mediation between the state of Florida, Biden administration and CDC has failed. Governor DeSantis said, "We were in mediation with them. They were very unreasonable about some of the things that they were asking. The CDC has no excuse for ruining two summers of sailing, and it is well past time to end the CDC’s desperate attempt to prolong its power trip over America". So, this thing’s going the distance. The question is how quickly. Every cruise line which hubs out of Florida has been granted the opportunity for at least a “Simulated Voyage” with volunteer passengers in June. 

So, there are two entirely different issues in play. The reality check that not all vaccines are created equal but are being treated as such by the CDC and whether they have any authority to be doing any of this anyway. There’s also another reality. There’s no way to guarantee people won’t become infected with COVID-19 on a cruise. And conceptually that’s really the most important dynamic people have to wrap their brains around sooner than later. Especially leftist government agencies and officials who are quick to exert power over people in the name of the virus. That principle is precisely why DeSantis is legally attacking this issue the way he is. It’s bigger than just the cruise industry. Especially in Florida. 

Each day I feature a listener question sent by one of these methods. 

Email: brianmudd@iheartmedia.com

Parler & Twitter: @brianmuddradio 

Photo by IVAN PISARENKO/AFP via Getty Images

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