The First Ward Report – August 24, 2021

The First Ward Report – August 24, 2021

More pandemic panic porn from the Chronicle!

I’d already heard that fully vaccinated Geneva D304 School Board member Mike McCormick contracted a breakthrough case of delta COVID variant, but until the Kane County Chronicle made it a screaming headline, the details were somewhat nebulous.

Apparently, it was quite the serious two-week case that commenced with serious flu-like symptoms and culminated in some tough breathing issues. To wit, he was provided with a O2 monitor and advised that if the reading went south of 90 he needed to hit the ER.

McCormick also correctly noted that, had he not been inoculated, he may well have perished from this more savage iteration of the plague.

But what the Chronicle failed to even mention is that these kinds of serious breakthrough cases are incredibly rare afflicting just one in 20 to 25,000 vaccinated individuals. They also glossed over these important facts:

  • Despite the delta’s far more contagious nature, his 11-year-old daughter tested negative.
  • His fully vaccinated wife was also infected but completely asymptomatic.
  • His half vaccinated 12-year-old daughter tested positive but her only symptoms were a mild fever and cough.

I don’t know about you, but had The First Ward been the venue to run that story, I would’ve focused on the three positive outcomes and not the single way-out-on-the-bell-curve family member who had a more difficult time.

I’m not minimizing McCormick’s predicament, but to put the low blood oxygen level reading in perspective, every asthmatic reader probably chuckled at the whole “below 90” thing. It’s not some strange form of schadenfreude, but you couldn’t get this asthmatic to darken an emergency room door until that number dropped below 85.

That’s why MDs will tell you that asthma sufferers do far better with the more serious plague symptoms because they’ve become so accustomed to congested lungs they don’t go into panic mode when breathing becomes a bit more challenging.

All that said, I’m glad it wasn’t worse and the McCormick family are back on track.


Senator McConchie has it, too!

Yes! The Chronicle also reported that fully vaccinated Illinois State Senator Dan McConchie is experiencing a breakthrough delta variant case, but because he was beset with only the mildest of symptoms, that story amounted to just 111 words.

Meanwhile, the much rarer McCormick tale contained six times that many words (672 of ‘em). So much for any attempt at real journalism.


The good, the bad, and the ugly

Of course, the “bad” is the Chronicle in general and the “ugly” is their bullshit coronavirus reporting. But the “good” may well be that the McCormick and McConchie stories could encourage some of the anti-vaccination nitwits to abandon their self-inflicted stupidity and get the damn shot.

I’m still counting on natural selection to take its course, but despite their lousy reporting, if those insipid Chronicle stories even minimally increase the local vaccination rate, there may be an eventual upside to their particular variety of pandemic panic porn.


Those consarned Batavia electric rates

Yet another Batavian took to social media this weekend to bitch about Batavia’s absurd electric rates, which is exactly what I would do if I was silly enough to live in that absurd city. Though when you think about it, living in Geneva ain’t all that and a bag of chips, either.

I wanted to explain why The City of Energy has so many problems with it, but I figured it would likely turn into an argument with some stupid commentor, and it would be more effective to remind Batavians of what’s behind their sad power plight right here. So, let’s review the slew of stories The First Ward has already published on this subject!


The bottom line is, if city councilmen could successfully speculate on the energy markets, they wouldn’t be wasting their time as lowly aldermen. But because they can’t, they generally just waste our time.

I wanted to ask that woman if she regularly votes, and if so, does she reflexively cast a ballot for the same mayor and aldermanic mopes that put the City in this precarious position in the first place.

Despite a legendary propensity for making terrible decisions (One Washington Place), Batavia Mayor Jeff Schielke is well into his 11th term which is patently absurd for any medium city mayor. When you consider the level to which Schielke and Batavia bought into the Prairie State Energy Campus boondoggle, he may be the only person on the planet that makes Geneva Mayor Kevin Burns look a little better by comparison.

After that June column on those electric rates, some Batavians reached out to tell me that the Mayor and a couple of the longer serving aldermen were taking a page from the Trump playbook by defending this indefensible energy debacle.

But despite this and so many other major blunders, Batavians either refuse to vote, or they keep putting the same bleeps right back into office which only encourages them to further screw up.

How does that Chinese curse go? “May you get exactly what you deserve!”

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