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More Noem Logic: Refusing Vaccine Leads to More Coronavirus and ICU Admission, So Wash Your Hands!

The Department of Health’s latest video on covid-19 reflects the harmful Republican failure to face facts about fighting coronavirus:

Consider the illogic of the text in this DOH message. The Governor points out two obvious and entirely predictable facts:

  1. “In South Dakota, 90% of the people in the ICU did not receive a covid vaccine.”
  2. “…the parts of our state that are being hit the hardest by the virus right now are areas where not as many people have been vaccinated.”

Presenting those two facts should lead the Governor and South Dakotans to the obvious conclusion: lower the case count and ICU admission numbers by getting your shots. But the Governor does not make that logical recommendation.

And it’s not because she doesn’t think it’s her place to tell people what choices to make about their health and the health of their families, friends, and communities. She concludes by telling South Dakotans what to do, in direct, unequivocal imperative voice:

“And, as always, keep washing your hands. Stay home if you’re sick.”

Governor Noem hit #1 and #2 on Republicans’ preferred methods for preventing coronavirus; I’m surprised the DOH videographer didn’t find a way to squeeze in #3, vitamins.

The only way this public disservice video serves any public interest is by providing English teachers with yet another real-world example of how not to structure a problem-solution argument (or essay, or oration, or one-minute PSA). The Governor cites solutions that have nothing to do with the problem she identified. She did not say that 90% of ICU patients failed to wash their hands. She did not say that the hardest-hit areas of the state are the counties where sick people are engaged in promiscuous hugs and handshakes. She associated our current coronavirus problems with people’s failure to vaccinate, but she still refuses to tell people to solve the problem with the obvious, proven remedy: GET YOUR SHOTS!


  1. jerry 2021-09-22

    NOem is Pontius Pilate reincarnated with the washing your hands schtick.

  2. Porter Lansing 2021-09-22

    Seniors are now able to schedule a Covid booster, if vaccinated with Pfizer and it’s been six months since your first injection.


  3. grudznick 2021-09-22

    Vitamins are bunk. A scheme foisted on the ignorant public by giant corporations, like Hanna-Barbara.

  4. Mark Anderson 2021-09-22

    Well you’d think since it’s mostly their voters who are dying in ignorance the pubs would wise up.

  5. sx123 2021-09-22

    It’s because some people think abortions are being used to make covid vaccines. These people make up a large percentage of her voters. Piss them off and game over.

  6. Porter Lansing 2021-09-22

    Remember when we got polio boosters on a sugar cube?

    grudz is right.

    Vitamins are just a sales pitch, marketed to people that don’t need them.

    Vitamin supplements are for pregnant women, calcium for elderly women, and people with diagnosed vitamin deficiencies.

  7. ArloBlundt 2021-09-22

    Well…typical Governor Noem mumbo-jumbo. It compares with that famous quote from Donald Trump, “One day we’ll all wake up and the Corona Virus will be gone, disappeared. Just like the flu.”

  8. John 2021-09-23

    The deadlist pandemic ever, yet most deaths were preventable. Why weren’t the deaths prevented?
    “There is one overwhelming and grim reality: most of the Covid deaths could have been prevented, but America’s fractured culture — political, economic and personal — mainly delivered death rather than life.”

    “US culture has repeatedly showed itself to be too self-centered, shortsighted and poorly informed to forestall mass deaths and continued surges of infection.”

    “Even with lifesaving vaccines in prospect or in hand, politicians — and notably Republican politicians — and too much of the public demanded complete, immediate and untrammeled personal freedom: the freedom to not wear face masks, the freedom to attend large gatherings, the freedom to eschew vaccines and the freedom to infect others.
    Many right wingers have treated even the most modest and limited protections as an attack on freedom. No immediate gratification should be denied; no face masks warranted even in schools, where children face the threats of infection. The message is now, now, now, without a pause for informed reflection and safety.
    The selfishness of it all has been staggering.”

    “The US has proved itself to be the land of a very peculiar notion of freedom: the freedom to harm others, to put the poor and frontline workers in mortal danger, and to spread misinformation. Freedom, in short, without a glimmer of responsibility.”

    “These facts reflect the two aspects of our broken culture: the Republican ideology of irresponsibility in the name of freedom and a culture prey to misinformation that results from chronically low-quality public education.”

  9. mike from iowa 2021-09-23

    The only way to wise up/expand a magat’s brain is through brain explosion. Magats likely believe using available drugs would turn them into bleeding heart Libs.

    if they want to rush and jump off the lemming cliff, who am i to stand in their way?

  10. O 2021-09-23

    six123, you have a point about the abortion/vaccine relationship for some. However, I remember this coming up when President Trump was vaccinated and churches gave him a pass. That was one of those watershed moments that I saw MAGA as the death cult it is. Conservatives would put their pro-life objections aside to save that President.

  11. Donald Pay 2021-09-23

    The CNN link that John provides is pretty much what my daughter said at that start of covid. She lives in China, where they had a pretty strict shutdown for the first three months of the outbreak, and short shutdowns with smaller local outbreaks that have occurred since then. My daughter and I discussed which country, the US or China would come out of covid sooner and stronger. I took the US, saying the US has a “can-do attitude.” If we set our minds on something, we “get ‘er done,” I said. She thought that China would come out of this faster and in a better position than the US because there is far more social cohesion in China and mask wearing is a cultural norm during yearly flu outbreaks. They didn’t need to be convinced face masked worked, because it has worked for decades in numerous flue outbreaks, as did testing, tracing, isolation, travel restrictions and other measures that are routine in China. You have to understand that the US and Europe developed far better vaccines than China, yet China vaccinated far more people in a faster time. Our great technological advantage fell short because our people are too selfish to use it to their advantage.

    This from the CNN article by Jeffrey Sachs: “US culture has repeatedly showed itself to be too self-centered, shortsighted and poorly informed to forestall mass deaths and continued surges of infection.”

    We now know exactly how terrorists could take down America in a relatively short time. An infectious agent unleashed on our “freedom loving,” dumb and self-centered citizens, would turn “freedom-loving” citizens into lethal weapons, leading to the deaths of us all. Bye-bye, America.

  12. Eve Fisher 2021-09-23

    “Come to South Dakota, where we respect your freedoms*,” but we’re out of ICU beds and short monoclonal antibodies and turning away anyone who isn’t a Covid patient West River. But come be a tourist, spend your money, and enjoy our great outdoors before you get ill and maybe die!

    *respecting freedoms does not apply to marijuana, voting rights, social studies, education, or anything else the Governor is trying to promote on Fox News.

  13. Jake 2021-09-23

    Eve-your last sentence tells it all!

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