From the Brownstone Institute
Billed as the most in-depth interview yet, the New York Times published a very long piece that contains some rather startling admissions, claims, and defenses from Anthony Fauci, the face of lockdowns and shot mandates.
The author and interviewer is David Wallace-Wells, who before (and now after) Covid specialized in writing about climate change, invokes every predictable trope. So there was a sense in which this interview was a lovefest between the two. Still it netted some interesting results.
Here are my top-ten picks of Fauci quotes.
1. Fauci: “Something clearly went wrong. And I don’t know exactly what it was. But the reason we know it went wrong is that we are the richest country in the world, and on a per-capita basis we’ve done worse than virtually all other countries.”
This seems promising but one quickly realizes that there is an axiom among the people responsible for lockdowns. They were completely correct in their thinking. The problem was not enough centralization, prior planning, or resources. Also there was too much disinformation and non-compliance, leading to a low vaccine uptake compared with other countries. The vaccines are the miracle and the greatest achievement of the pandemic, a point on which they admit no argument.
This is also the conclusion of a thing called The Covid Crisis Group (funded mostly by the Charles Koch and Rockefeller Foundations) which has released the new book Lessons from the Covid War: An Investigative Report. There is no PDF. You have to buy it. The lead author is the well-known fixer Philip Zelikow, who wrote the 9-11 Commission report. Included among the team is none other than Carter Mecher, who bears more responsibility for school closings than anyone else. Also there is Rajeev Venkayya, the one-time Bush administration official who is widely credited with having invented the very concept of lockdowns.
It’s their story and they are sticking to it.
2. Fauci on vaccine mandates: “Man, I think, almost paradoxically, you had people who were on the fence about getting vaccinated thinking, why are they forcing me to do this? And that sometimes-beautiful independent streak in our country becomes counterproductive. And you have that smoldering anti-science feeling, a divisiveness that’s palpable politically in this country.”
If you didn’t think you needed the vaccine or didn’t trust it, Fauci proclaims that you are responsible for divisiveness and anti-science feeling. The “independent streak” is called freedom, which for him is the real problem. The lesson for next time? Hard to know. Maybe he thinks the mandates should have been enforced with more energy.
3. Fauci on the economics of the lockdowns: “The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is not an economic organization. The surgeon general is not an economist. So we looked at it from a purely public-health standpoint. It was for other people to make broader assessments — people whose positions include but aren’t exclusively about public health. Those people have to make the decisions about the balance between the potential negative consequences of something versus the benefits of something.”
There we go with the great divide between public health and real life, as if one does not impact the other. Public health cared not for economics – the science of human cooperation – and, sadly, the economists were too often unschooled on public health. The compartmentalization of speciality fields played into the haphazard totalitarianism we experienced.
4. Fauci on why he is not responsible for anything: “when people say, ‘Fauci shut down the economy’ — it wasn’t Fauci. The C.D.C. was the organization that made those recommendations. I happened to be perceived as the personification of the recommendations. But show me a school that I shut down and show me a factory that I shut down. Never. I never did. I gave a public-health recommendation that echoed the C.D.C.’s recommendation, and people made a decision based on that. But I never criticized the people who had to make the decisions one way or the other.
He was merely deferring to a giant bureaucracy where no one takes responsibility either!
5. Fauci on how they should have locked down earlier: “We were not fully appreciative of the fact that we were dealing with a highly, highly transmissible virus that was clearly spread by ways that were unprecedented and unexperienced by us. And so it fooled us in the beginning and confused us about the need for masks and the need for ventilation and the need for inhibition of social interaction.” Should they have shut down in February 2020? “We should have, probably, if we knew what we know now.”
Inexperienced in a textbook respiratory virus? It’s because they thought it was a bioweapon that could be handled like AIDS. Masks were the condoms. Lockdowns were the behavioral changes. Minimizing of cases was the metric of success. On every point, they were wrong. Plus they didn’t even learn from the AIDS experience. It wasn’t the vaccines that cooled the crisis. It was the therapeutics innovated in clinical experience. Instead, Fauci shut down all efforts at early treatment to wait for the vaccines. Having done it earlier would have been even worse!
6. Fauci on the effectiveness of masking: “From a broad public-health standpoint, at the population level, masks work at the margins — maybe 10 percent. But for an individual who religiously wears a mask, a well-fitted KN95 or N95, it’s not at the margin. It really does work. But I think anything that instigated or intensified the culture wars just made things worse. And I have to be honest with you, David, when it comes to masking, I don’t know.”
He doesn’t know. At least he admits it. And yet the CDC is still suing for the legal right to impose masking on the whole population whoever it wants.
7. Fauci on not understanding the virus: “Herd immunity is based on two premises: one, that the virus doesn’t change, and two, that when you get infected or vaccinated, the durability of protection is measured in decades, if not a lifetime. With SARS-CoV-2, we thought protection against infection was going to be measured in a long period of time. And we found out — wait a minute, protection against infection, and against severe disease, is measured in months, not decades. No. 2, the virus that you got infected with in January 2020 is very different from the virus that you’re going to get infected with in 2021 and 2022.”
To be clear, nothing about herd immunity requires lifetime immunity and it certainly is not premised on unchanging virus. Indeed, it is astonishing that he claims they had no idea the virus would mutate. It’s an established reality that such widespread and mostly non-deadly pathogens like this mutate, which is precisely why they cannot be eradicated through vaccination. Why must anyone have to explain virus basics to Fauci of all people?
8. Fauci on the huge age gradient of medically significant risk: “Did we say that the elderly were much more vulnerable? Yes. Did we say it over and over and over again? Yes, yes, yes. But somehow or other, the general public didn’t get that feeling that the vulnerable are really, really heavily weighted toward the elderly. Like 85 percent of the hospitalizations are there.”
In fact, their solution was to shut down the whole of society for a virus that was mostly if not entirely a danger to the aged and sick. And to justify that, they absolutely did obscure the risk gradient, which is why most everyone was running around like their hair was on fire. The attempt was precisely to create population fear and panic, as Fauci said many times in private.
9. Fauci on whether the NIH funded the lab that leaked the virus. “ Now you’re saying things that are a little bit troublesome to me. That I need to go to bed tonight worrying that N.I.H.-funded research was responsible for pandemic origins…. Well, I sleep fine. I sleep fine. And remember, this work was done in order to be able to help prepare us for the next outbreak. This work was not conceived by me as I was having my omelet in the morning. It is a grant that was put before peer review of independent scientists whose main role is to try to get data to protect the health and safety of the American public and the world. And it was judged that this type of research was important.”
Once again, if the NIH had anything to do with funding the research that led to the virus, he is not responsible for that either. It was those pesky independent scientists. He has again thrown colleagues under the bus.
10. Fauci on gain-of-function research: “Some want to pass a law: All gain-of-function should be stopped. But if all gain-of-function stops, you will have no vaccines for flu. You will have no vaccines for any of the other diseases, because all of that manipulates a virus or a pathogen to gain a certain function to be able to make a vaccine.”
That’s a very hard claim. I asked ChatGPT about that and it quickly spat out the following:
“No, the flu vaccine does not require gain-of-function research. The development of flu vaccines typically involves studying the behavior of the virus and its strains, identifying the most common strains and predicting which one will be most prevalent in the upcoming season. The vaccine is then developed using inactivated or attenuated versions of the virus, which do not require gain-of-function research. Gain-of-function research, which involves genetically modifying viruses to make them more infectious or deadly, is sometimes used for studying the flu virus, but it is not required for the creation of flu vaccines.”
If not for the flu vaccine, what is gain-of-function’s purpose? The creation of bioweapons and vaccines to confound them? The track record of this looks awful.
Fauci and his friends keep trying to close the book on the Covid epoch. They have settled on the messaging and are doing everything possible to tie it all up in a bow in hopes that everyone will move on. The mainstream media wants to move on too. Everyone guilty for the wreckage wants to do the same, particularly the elites in every sector that pushed for and celebrated the mass violation of human rights.
They are wrong. The book is not closed and will not be until we get honest answers.
The Covid Narrative Flunked the Critical Thinking Test
From the Brownstone Institute
At the height of the Covid hysteria, several times I encountered variations of the meme “It’s not a pandemic; it’s an IQ test.” Probably the memesters were poking fun at those duped by the mainstream Covid messaging.
In any case, that meme really misses the point. The essential problem has never been about one’s IQ. Many highly intelligent people (in an academic sense) swallowed a very dubious narrative, while others less academically gifted did not. The real divider was the ability and inclination to think critically about it.
In a previous article I explained the basic concept of critical thinking, which can be defined as rational judgment about appeals to belief. Here I will lay out my own classroom approach to it in relation to the Covid messaging and policies.
The approach was derived from Browne and Keeley’s once popular critical thinking textbook, Asking the Right Questions: A Guide to Critical Thinking. Simplified for Japanese university students unfamiliar with the concept of critical thinking, this approach consists of six questions, all very applicable to the official narrative about Covid. For any Japanese speakers who may be reading this, here is a video link of me explaining my approach.
Number one: What are the issues and the conclusion? The purpose of this question is to spur awareness that very often there is an assertion being made in the context of a debated issue. Many of my students have been completely unaware that a debate exists about many matters they hear about in school or from the media, such as climate change/global warming.
When people insist that no real debate exists in regard to an issue about which reasonable people differ, they have already failed the critical thinking test. That stance certainly has been the substance of much Covid messaging.
Number two: How good are the reasons? Many of my students can brainstorm on their own the characteristics of good reasons: clear, true, logical, objective, and important. In the Covid context, untrue reasons include arguing on the basis that novel, experimental injections are certainly (100 percent or 95 percent) “safe and effective.” Moreover, the demand by pharmaceutical companies to receive complete legal protection from any liability belied this claim of safety.
Along with that, it was not logical to endanger people with potentially serious health harms from experimental injections or to withhold from them medical care in the name of protecting them, as happened during the lockdowns.
Number three: How good is the evidence? For the purpose of learning critical thinking about statistics, a number of books explain common forms of statistical deception and error. The classic book How to Lie With Statistics, along with the more recent book by Joel Best Damned Lies and Statistics, show how such dubious statistical data is often created or else badly interpreted.
In a Japanese book, Shakai Chosa no Uso (The Lies of Social Research), Professor Ichiro Tanioka reveals that government statistics also are often deceptive and simply serve the interests of bureaucrats and politicians, either by magnifying a problem to justify government policies and funding or by making a government program appear to be successful. Since many people are easily impressed by number data, he comments that more than half of all social science research is garbage, a problem compounded when the data is then referenced by the mass media, activists, and others.
Since the earliest days of the Covid panic, statistical chicanery has been conspicuous, including Neil Ferguson’s now-infamous predictions of millions of deaths without lockdowns. Norman Fenton exposed a number of statistical confusions in the UK’s national statistics in regard to Covid. As another example, Pfizer’s claim of 95 percent Covid vaccine efficacy was based on its own shoddy research using the PCR tests. However, few in the Covid-messaging mainstream bothered to look into the statistically shaky basis for this claim. They simply parroted the “95 percent.”
Number four: Are any words unclear or used strangely? A number of words took on unclear, strange, or inconsistent meanings during the Covid panic. One notable example was the word safe. In the case of the experimental Covid injections, the term evidently could accommodate a wide variety of serious side effects and a considerable number of deaths.
However, in other contexts, an extreme, all-or-nothing concept of safety came into play, as in the slogan “No one is safe until everyone is safe.” This slogan makes as much sense as shouting, during the sinking of a passenger ship, “If everyone is not in the lifeboats, then no one is in the lifeboats.” Nevertheless, this nonsensical mantra was on the lips of many in the corporate media, in order to insist on policies like universal Covid vaccination.
Interestingly, this absurd concept of safety is actually one of the items in The Ennis-Weir Critical Thinking Essay Test, which I made use of in my teaching and research (The test and manual can be downloaded for free). The test focuses on a fictional letter to a newspaper editor arguing for a total ban on overnight street parking in a certain city. The test-taker’s job is to evaluate the various arguments in the letter, one of which asserts that “conditions are not safe if there’s even the slightest possible chance for an accident.”
Of course, such a view of safety could lead to the ban of almost anything with the slightest element of risk. To illustrate this, I pretended to trip on a student desk in class. Then I would insist that the accident showed that “teaching is too dangerous” and leave the classroom briefly. There is very little in life that is really “100 percent safe.”
Another conspicuous misuse of terminology has been referring to the Covid injections as “vaccines,” since the novel mRNA technology does not fit within the traditional definition of a vaccine. A more accurate designation would be “gene therapy,” since the injections influence the expression of the body’s genes, as Sonia Elijah and others have pointed out.
In order to allay public anxieties and avoid the necessity of testing their injections for possible toxic gene-related side effects like cancer, the familiar, user-friendly term vaccine was chosen. Then when the “vaccines” were obviously failing to prevent Covid infection, as vaccines are normally expected to do, the public was suddenly offered a new definition of a vaccine –something that does not prevent infection at all but simply ameliorates the symptoms of disease.
Number 5: Are there any other possible causes? People often arbitrarily attribute phenomena to causes that they wish to implicate. However, multiple causes may be to blame, or the real cause may actually be something entirely different. For example, many have been blaming human-generated CO2 for the high temperatures this summer, but other possible causes have been identified, such as an increase in atmospheric water vapor from underwater volcanic eruptions.
In regard to Covid causation, John Beaudoin discovered evidence of widespread fraud on death certificates in Massachusetts, in response to pressure from public health officials wanting to inflate Covid death figures. Hundreds of accidental deaths and even Covid vaccine deaths were counted as resulting from Covid.
Looking at the UK’s national Covid death statistics, Norman Fenton discovered a similar problem. Only around 6,000 people actually died from Covid alone, a mere four and a half percent of the total number of supposed “Covid deaths.” The rest had other serious medical conditions as possible causes of death. If a person tested positive on a PCR test after hospital admission, even someone fatally injured in a traffic accident could be counted as a Covid death.
In another example of wrong-headed thinking about causation, elements of the mainstream news media and certain “experts” credited the initial relatively low numbers of Covid hospitalizations and deaths in Japan to the practice of universal masking here. Unfortunately for that theory, soon afterwards Covid cases and hospitalizations shot up dramatically in Japan, making the “saved-by-masks” explanation difficult to maintain. Nevertheless, many officials and media outlets had decided early on that they believed in masks, regardless of what the evidence and common sense had to say.
Number six: What are the basic assumptions and are they acceptable? An assumption is an underlying, unstated belief that often goes without challenge and discussion. Recently I encountered a false assumption when I decided to stop wearing a face mask in class at my university. This met with the displeasure of one of the higher-ups, who called me in for a chat. He insisted that my unmasked face was making my students uncomfortable in class. He was assuming that they felt this way about it, so I decided to do an anonymous survey to find out their real feelings. To my surprise, only one student in all of my classes objected to my going maskless. The rest preferred that I teach without a mask or else expressed indifference.
Adherents of the mainstream Covid narrative accepted as axioms dubious ideas such as these:
- Viral epidemics can and should be halted by extreme measures bringing great suffering on large numbers of people.
- The threat of Covid infection supersedes human rights such as the rights to work, to commune with other human beings, to express opinions freely, etc.
- Facial masks prevent Covid transmission.
- Facial masks do no significant harm.
These assumptions have been ably debunked by many articles at Brownstone Institute and elsewhere.
Thus from the beginning the mainstream Covid narrative has failed to give persuasive responses to any of these questions. In light of that, it is remarkable that there are still many people who endorse the original Covid measures and messaging. Especially in times like these, more people need to employ critical thinking to become less gullible and more skeptical of widespread ideas and influential entities, including those usually branded as reliable. They neglect to do so at their own peril.
Yes, You Are Being Manipulated
From the Brownstone Institute
Pubmed is a government aggregator site for peer-reviewed research.
Recently, a search on Pubmed using the search terms “COVID-19 vaccines” revealed a shocking trend. So, what did I find?
There are literally thousands of peer-reviewed studies on vaccine hesitancy and how the government can overcome it. In sum, there are over 6,000 such studies on Pubmed. A more narrowly focused search on endnote pulled up about 1,250 studies. These studies have a wide range of topics, but most focus on which groups of people are vaccine-hesitant, statistics on these populations, as well as how to overcome vaccine hesitancy through propaganda, censorship, the law, and behavioral control.
The fact is that our government, governments from around the world, the WHO and UNICEF have spent billions of dollars in a misguided attempt to try to figure out how to make people take (coerce, compel, and entice) these experimental medical products (COVID-19 vaccines). This was clearly a coordinated effort.
This monumental worldwide effort to manipulate beliefs has eliminated informed consent. Informed consent is the idea that a person must be given sufficient information before making decisions about their medical care. Pertinent information includes risks and benefits of treatments, the patient’s role in treatment, alternative treatments, and the person’s right to refuse treatment. When people cannot get reliable safety information on whether to take an experimental product or any medical product, when they are being coerced and are not informed of important safety considerations, informed consent is gone.
Of particular concern is the vaccine hesitancy clinical trials that are specifically designed to see what types of propaganda, nudging, computational propaganda, and behavioral modifications work best to elicit compliance from entire populations. In funding such studies, the government and worldwide leadership have endeavored to eliminate informed consent.
Remember, the US only has Emergency Use Authorized COVID vaccines available. These products have not had to go through the rigors of the clinical trial process to receive full licensure. Of course, much of what has been labeled as misinformation over the past three years has been proven to be truth. People were not allowed to know the truth through propaganda, censorship, and coercion.
These studies have been bought and paid for mostly by the US government, UNICEF or NGO/astroturf organizations working on their behalf.
This is basically taxpayer-funded market research to garner compliance for the COVID-19 vaccine rollout. Marketing research and methods to coerce large populations by the US government for the likes of Pfizer and Moderna.
So, Dr. Mandy Cohen, the Director of the CDC is right. These experimental vaccines have been studied more than any vaccine in history – to ensure 100 percent uptake by the global population.
Below is a recent paper, whose authors work for the Health and Human Services – our government.
From the Abstract:
“the US Department of Health and Human Services launched the We Can Do This public education campaign in April 2021 to increase vaccine confidence.
The campaign uses a mix of digital, television, print, radio, and out-of-home channels to reach target audiences…
The size and length of the Department of Health and Human Services We Can Do This public education campaign make it uniquely situated to examine the impact of a digital campaign on COVID-19 vaccination, which may help inform future vaccine communication efforts and broader public education efforts.
These findings suggest that campaign digital dose is positively associated with COVID-19 vaccination uptake among US adults; future research assessing campaign impact on reduced COVID-19–attributed morbidity and mortality and other benefits is recommended. This study indicates that digital channels have played an important role in the COVID-19 pandemic response.
Digital outreach may be integral in addressing future pandemics and could even play a role in addressing nonpandemic public health crises.”
Re-read that last sentence again. Not only did the US government (HHS) have a huge campaign to program our minds during COVID to increase uptake of the “vaccine;” they are now planning how to use this “Digital outreach” for non-pandemic purposes…
This campaign was bombarded the American people with propaganda, paid for by the US Government. From the article:
The We Can Do This campaign aims to influence COVID-19 vaccine confidence and uptake through the dissemination of advertisements (eg, 30-second videos and static images with text) that address key attitudinal and behavioral constructs relevant to these outcomes across a mix of traditional and new media channels. These channels include television, radio, and print media; site direct (digital advertising directly purchased on websites), programmatic (digital advertising purchased through automated marketplace platforms to reach audiences across a range of websites, apps, and platforms), and paid social media (advertising bought directly on social media platforms) advertisements; earned media; partnerships; and influencer engagement. To reach diverse audiences, the campaign has engaged simultaneously with the general population and with specific racial and ethnic audiences through tailored communications in more than 14 languages, including English and Spanish.
Between April 5 and September 26, 2021, according to Nielsen Digital and Total Ad Ratings (see Multimedia Appendix 1), the campaign is estimated to have reached more than 90 percent of US adults an average of 20.9 times across measured television and digital channels (Nielsen Digital Ad Ratings, unpublished data, 2021). In addition to the campaign’s national reach, it also delivered extra ads to markets, zip codes, and population segments with higher proportions of vaccine-hesitant adults and higher COVID-19 prevalence. As the vaccination uptake rate varied across designated market areas (DMAs), the campaign also took vaccination rates into account when deciding where to deliver these extra ads to help encourage first-dose vaccination.
This campaign not only utilized propaganda, it is also used known neuro-linguistic programming techniques, such as repetitive messaging.
They then did a large clinical trial to see how these techniques affected people’s decision to get the mRNA “vaccine.” The results showed that this huge propaganda campaign was hugely successful in getting people to take the jab.
The problem with propaganda and censorship is that the use of such by governments and world leaders is that it is a slippery slope.
As documented in the paper above, our government leaders now know that the use of such tools was successful in increasing vaccine uptake. The administrative state is only going to increase their use of such techniques during the next health crisis. Climate change or gun violence seem logical choices for more governmental propaganda and censorship.
Yep – there is good evidence that the government is paying for studies such as these:
Finally, the public is waking up to these tactics. As the experimental vaccines failed, the masks were again documented to not work, the economic impact of the lockdowns was exposed and school age children now show cognitive declines from school closures, much of the public is skeptical and untrusting. This is a good thing. This is progress for the people, for our country.
The administrative state will not give up easily; they are only going to increase their use of these behavioral modification tools, propaganda, and censorship. But next time, they will have a bigger fight on their hands.
Republished from the author’s Substack
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