QUESTION ASKED: Who the hell is in charge of Orange County?

Locally, at 2:26 p.m. on March 17, we got an Order from the County (this Order and the aftermath all pre-dated the statewide shutdown, but is still instructive as to our leaders). Here’s what they ordered: “Effective immediately…the following will be in effect in Orange County: 1. All public and private gatherings of any number of people, including at places of work…are prohibited.”

Just to make sure you were paying attention, the County closed with a warning: “this Order may be enforced by the Sheriff or chiefs of police.” Serious stuff. Businesses were closed, effective immediately, and the cops could come after you for disobedience.

Where did this strong medicine come from?

This was the valid Order of Orange County’s Health Officer. Who is that and who elected her? No one knew—before March 17 that is, when, suddenly, no one could go to work and each had ample time to Google this doctor who had just unemployed them. Turns out she, ultimately, works for the County Board of Supervisors. They are elected by the People. But their bureaucrat doctor, seemingly without their approval, shut down by fiat all “non-essential” businesses in a county of over 3 million people.

How did we get from “the aim of every political constitution”—from republican government—to here?

Elsewhere in Southern California: Paddleboarder arrested at Malibu Pier for flouting state stay at home order. As Joel Engel tweets, “Genius. He was miles from another soul until confronted face-to-face by the deputies, then who knows how many others at the sheriff’s substation. ‘We had to destroy the village in order to save it.'”