Public health should lose your trust
Trust a system in so far as it's performance
I was listening to an episode of Econ talk recently and the guest said: trust a system in so far as it's performance.
In other words, trust is justified based on how an organization or system performs. And the truth is, the entire public health apparatus, failed. In addition to that, leaders at FDA and NIH and CDC engaged in lies and propaganda. As such, they should lose your trust, and without serious reforms you should not return the trust of these organizations. Let me detail some of the failures:
Lack of debates/ smearing scientists who disagreed
We were making unprecedented massive decisions and we had ~zero debates. Worse, any dissent was punished. Francis Collins, NIH director, famously emailed Anthony Fauci calling for a “quick and devastating” take down of the “fringe” epidemiologists who opposed lockdowns. This was unfortunate, but par for the course. During the pandemic major universities held ~0 debates on lockdowns, prolonged school closure, masking toddlers, visitor restrictions, and perpetual hospital masking.
It’s one thing to act in times of uncertainty. It is another thing to stifle dissent and dialog. In many ways talking with the “fringe” epidemiologists could have helped us. We might have reached a compromise, with schools opening sooner than they otherwise would.
Natural immunity counts for nothing
Whether or not having prior COVID-19 means you are less likely to get seriously ill from a repeat bout of covid-19, is now well accepted as obviously true. And yet, this information was steadily suppressed. A paper out this week in the Lancet shows durable reduction in severe disease after natural infection.
Furthermore, whether or not such an individual has a further reduction in severe disease or hospitalization from vaccination remains unclear. The right way to study this to make Pfizer and modern out perform a randomized control trial in this population alone. And yet neither company has done that because the FDA does not make them.
Worse, Paul Offit reports that this administration had a private poll as to whether natural immunity would count and it narrowly lost. Decisions of this magnitude should not be made in secret.
The efficacy of masks was a double lie. First, Fauci told the truth. And the world health organization and CDC pre-existing guidance was consistent with no community recommendation. Then, the entire enterprise of public health lied. Worse they recommended cloth masks which were known not to work.
Worst of all, they performed no randomized control trials to find the truth. The recent Cochrane review shows no effect of community masking. Yet, they continue to lie, Rochelle Walensky recently told Congress that there was no equipoise to run these trials. That is a lie.
In February, the initial reports from Israel showed myocarditis at a rate of 1 in 3,000 in the highest risk of demographic of young men. The US CDC repeatedly denied any signal, and rushed vaccines through for 12 to 15-year-olds without adequately assessing this.
To this date, they have never compelled the company to test the lower doses in young men. It truly does not make sense why our policies have to treat a 88-year-old woman the same as a 18-year-old man.
Normally, drugs given to tens of millions of people are supported by randomized trials. Pax only has data in on vaccinated populations. Vaccinated trials are negative to date. Post exposure prophylaxis is negative. ICU trials are negative.
Both of the FDA and the CDC are pushing this drug product without making Pfizer prove it. Benefits the Americans who are taking it. We all know 20-year-olds with no medical problems who have taken it. That frankly is malpractice. An ongoing UK study will set this to rest.
One size fits all booster recs
Not to belabor the point, but giving EUA to a fourth dose in a 20-year-old man who had covid twice is an abuse of the EUA authority. What emergency is there? One size fits all booster policies enriches the company, but impoverishes Americans.
Trust is lost.
There is no question going forward Public health is facing an existential crisis. Hundreds of millions of Americans don't trust them. That trust was lost because of lies and errors.
Public health has aligned itself with democratic partisan politics, further alienating itself from half of America.
If something bad happens, we are doomed. The country will tear itself apart before we ever succumbed to restrictions again.
The situation is very dire. The only way to regain trust is brutal honesty and accountability. As a scientist, it's my duty to call balls and strikes. This administration struck out a long time ago.