The famous scientist Carl Sagan once wrote, “One of the saddest lessons of history is this: If we’ve been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. We’re no longer interested in finding out the truth. The bamboozle has captured us. It’s simply too painful to acknowledge, even to ourselves, that we’ve been taken. Once you give a charlatan power over you, you almost never get it back.”
It’s become painfully clear during this COVID crisis that Americans have been bamboozled. While difficult in early postmortems to prioritize culpability, the villains in this melodrama earning top billing include medical doctors masquerading as scientists, persuasion entertainers, and of course the omni-complicit media. For weeks these megalomaniacal charlatans have twisted facts, sadistically played on our fears, and coerced us to act in ways detrimental to ourselves and our society.
Doctors without Competence: Drs. Anthony Fauci and Debroha Brix led the government response to COVID. In my April 4th post, I questioned the wisdom of believing mathematical models generated by MDs clearly outside their swim lane. Followers of my blog know that as early as March 30th, I warned that federal and academic models were not comporting with WHO/CDC data.
On April 1st, Fauci/Brix chose to scare an already stressed public with their wildly unfounded claim that by April 14th the US would experience 250,000 deaths. Meanwhile, using a simple mathematical function to analyze WHO/CDC data I concluded a probable upper limit on the number of US deaths by April 14th would be less than 50,000. While that projection is still frighteningly high and demands mitigation measures, for the government to error by a factor of five is unpardonable; especially given the widespread panic and over-reach that resulted.
We now learn that in order to rescue credibility, Fauci and Brix have directed the medical community to label virtually all deaths in America as COVID related. An example given by a Minnesota doctor was that if someone is hit by a bus and dying from internal hemorrhaging but presents with a runny noise, the cause of death will be ruled COVID related. The US is the only country falsely inflating COVID numbers in this manner.
When I taught Measurements Lab to second year engineering students, we used the term “dry lab” to describe when students fabricated measurement data to match a desired outcome. In the scientific community, what Facui and Brix are attempting to do by skewing the COVID death count would be labeled professional malfeasance, or to use a term they might remember from when they practiced medicine, malpractice.
Leaders of the Lemming Legions: I hold equal scorn for persuasion entertainers who initially promoted government marketing before jumping the shark to see who among them could advocate the most reckless behavior. It got so absurd that talk show hosts like Limbaugh and Hannity were proposing potentially dangerous practices like taking Chlorquine Hydochloride as a prophylactic regardless of known detrimental side effects; even going so far as to infer it’s our patriotic duty to take the drug.
As early as March 31st, I shared my analysis of WHO/CDC data with the White House, persuasion entertainers, and the media. I worried this collective cohort was creating false stress and fear among Americans with sensationalized claims of death and despair. Rather than review my data driven analyses however, they chose to advance nefarious marketing. As scornful as the actions of persuasion entertainers have been, at least they didn’t falsely present themselves as scientist. Also, I’d like to believe Americans already realize they’re just entertainers.
Media Matters: In times of crisis people rely on news outlets for information. Unfortunately, news has become less about fact and more about outrageous opinions of people disguised as experts. In a time when our nation desperately needs sound journalism, clear informational vetting, and concise unbiased reporting, we are disappointingly denied.
Jeff Richards once opined, “there is a huge difference between journalism and advertising. Journalism aspires to truth. Advertising is regulated for truth. I’ll put the accuracy of the average ad in this country up against the average news story any time.”
The truth has been hiding in plain sight since this crisis began and it was not hard to ferret through WHO/CDC data to ascertain it. Armed with a simple mathematical function taught to high school students, I demonstrated in early April that government and academic models were ensconced in hyperbole and nefariously misleading. Where was media’s due diligence? Where was the effort to spend a few hours back in high school solving a simple homework problem?
So now we witness the cohort’s collective scurry. Like a horrific train wreck we’re compelled to watch, we see the government, the persuasion entertainers, and the entire media complex scrabbling to demonstrate postmortem clairvoyance. My favorite so far, has been a major newspaper reporter claiming he knew all along the Fauci/Brix projections were outrageously wrong. He offers no journalistic evidence, just a feeling that’s been percolating in him from the start.
We see the usual experts stammering to expound that they never were really wrong, but rather that mitigation measures finally had an effect. That is a false narrative. In the first place, government and academic models should have accurately accounted for mitigations, they’ve been modeling influenzas and pandemics for years. Equally poignant is that the WHO/CDC data their models purportedly relied on had the effects of mitigation embedded it all along. To hear Fauci/Brix attempt to reconcile the difference between their dire projections and reality as evidence to just how effective their leadership has been is attempted misdirection.
For those who have followed my blog and reviewed my analyzes, it is clear we’ve been bamboozled by Fauci/Brix, mislead by persuasion entertainers, and let down by the media at large. That is not to suggest we’re not in a crisis or that COVID is not a serious threat to our nation and the world. However, when a ship is taking on water, it’s the responsibility of information gatekeepers to correctly assess and properly report. There’s a huge difference between a leak that needs to be managed and a gaping hole in the side of the stern that’s sinking the ship. There’s a vast disparity between fixing a leak and crying in panic to abandon ship. The government, entertainers, and media went all in for sensationalizing the COVID crisis when they should have been accurately assessing data and developing measured mitigations.