Friday, December 16, 2022


The Bible

After a gap of about a year, I have just put something up on my scripture blog. It is about love

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Researchers Decry Censorship in COVID Policy During Meeting With Gov. DeSantis

Michelle Utter, a health care worker and single mother of grown sons who are active-duty military, said she was in great physical shape—running, working out, and martial arts—until she took the Pfizer vaccine for COVID.

Utter described the ordeal she’s been through for the last two years—physically, trying to do her job and facing resistance and silencing from the Florida hospital that employs her. She’s not allowed to say, “vaccine injury.” She’s been on IV infusions for 17 months.

Another vaccine victim, Steven Ordonia, a retired law enforcement officer and military veteran, talked about his ordeal, which began when he received the Pfizer booster shot in December 2021.

“And from that day on, my life has been turned upside down,” with numerous trips to the emergency room, joint pain, muscle twitching, and convulsions.

“I was convinced at the time I was having a mental breakdown, and that’s what was causing all the symptoms. I contemplated suicide several times.”

As a reminder to all that public health policy has real consequences, the two spoke at a round table on Dec. 13 led by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis.

The governor convened a panel of experts—primarily researchers who had tried to warn about problems with the vaccines—and launched a grand jury investigation into vaccine problems and how they were dealt with or covered up.

The researchers will sit on the state’s new Public Health Integrity Committee.

Researcher after researcher talked about how the public health establishment suppressed information: that the vaccines often don’t pass risk-benefit analysis. How sometimes-fatal myocarditis has emerged as a side effect. How the vaccines’ rates of complications were far higher than those of most approved vaccines. How countries like Denmark, rather than mandating children take the vaccine, now don’t allow them to take it. How lower COVID mortality among vaccine users is often offset by higher mortality from other causes.

They, DeSantis and Florida Surgeon General Joseph Ladapo excoriated a medical establishment that, in DeSantis’ words, “wanted to just cocoon themselves from any criticism, and to try to denigrate anybody that had a different way of thinking.”

‘Largest Blunder in Human History’
“I don’t think it’s an exaggeration to say that all decision-making surrounding COVID amounts to the largest blunder in human history,” said Bret Weinstein, a former evolutionary biology professor at Evergreen State College.

“I think the major problem has been that … people, regular people, scientists, whoever thinks that there’s something really different than the narrative, you’re gonna get destroyed,” said Jay Bhattacharya, a Stanford Medical School public health professor. “That’s happened over and over again, even for very prominent scientists,” he said.

“A lot of the censorship that’s happened of scientific discussion comes from the top.”

Bhattacharya and another round table participant, Martin Kulldorff, were two of the three lead authors of the Great Barrington Declaration, signed by over 60,000 doctors and researchers, plus 870,000 others. Made public in October 2020, signers decried the harm of the lockdown.

They urged, until a vaccine became available, a policy of “Focused Protection”: isolating those at greatest risk while allowing others to go about their lives, acquiring natural and herd immunity.

It called for the resumption of everyday life for most people, said basic hygiene like routine handwashing and staying home when sick were sufficient community measures, and described how the vulnerable, such as the elderly, could be best protected at home and in nursing homes.

The declaration was targeted immediately by the head of the NIH, Francis Collins, with “a devastating takedown of the premises of the declaration,” Bhattacharya said.

“The federal officials were working to suppress what they called misinformation, but actually what they suppress is scientific discussion.”

Emergency Room Physician

Joseph Fraiman, an emergency room physician in what he termed “Cajun country” in Louisiana, said that he and six fellow researchers studied “serious adverse events” associated with the vaccines, events the manufacturers themselves defined.

“And what I mean by serious is that you’re either hospitalized, or you were permanently disabled, or dead,” he said.

They wanted to look at them with “a magnifying glass” because the manufacturers “originally reported that there was no harm, there was no serious harm to the vaccines.”

What they found, Fraiman said, “is that there are more of these types of events in the vaccine group than in the non-vaccine, the placebo group.”

“To our surprise, in the Pfizer trial, the first vaccine to go through it was a 37 percent increase in the number of serious adverse events. That was never reported, not by the FDA, not by Pfizer,” he said.

“In fact, Pfizer says—I may get it wrong verbatim—but they said that the incidence of serious adverse events are similar in the vaccine and placebo groups. Thirty-seven percent is not similar. It’s actually statistically significantly different.”

And, “it turns out in both Pfizer and Moderna, we had a one in 800 risk of serious adverse events” from the list.

Other vaccines, Fraiman said, have a one in one million or one in two million risk. “One in 800 is disastrous, if true.”

Most people, if they contract COVID now, don’t have a one in 800 chance of being hospitalized, he said.

pfizer vaccine

A health care worker prepares a dose of Pfizer BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine in a file image. (Ezra Acayan/Getty Images)
Researchers with different areas of specialty talked about their findings, perspectives, and experiences, trying to publicize what they’d found.

Ladapo discussed a small, preliminary study in Florida comparing all-cause mortality with cardiac mortality after COVID vaccination. They found two remarkable things: a markedly increased risk of cardiac death in young men, specifically in that age and group, and a failure by most public health officials to acknowledge it.

Christine Stabell Benn, a Danish doctor and researcher at the University of Southern Denmark who videoconferenced in, said the vaccines appear to have “nonspecific events”—greater risk of infection by other diseases.

“If we’ve only studied its effect against the target disease, we also need to study its effect against other diseases and its effects on overall mortality and morbidity,” she said.

“I was very concerned when we started recommending vaccines for everybody because I simply didn’t think that the vaccines have been investigated thoroughly enough for nonspecific events. In fact, they haven’t been investigated (at all) for nonspecific events,” she said.

“This means that particularly for children and young people who weren’t at a high risk for COVID-19, I was concerned that nonspecific effects might outweigh or exceed … the benefits achieved from the specific protection against COVID-19.”

Danish public health policy now only recommends booster COVID vaccinations to those over 50 except those at severe risk, and immunization of children has stopped altogether.

As of a few weeks ago, she said, COVID is now regarded in Denmark like any other respiratory disease. “It’s really nice to be here (in Denmark),” she said. “Life goes on as it used to do before COVID. Nobody pays attention to COVID-19 anymore.”

‘Disregarded Basic Principles’

Kulldorff, on leave from Harvard and a fellow at Hillsdale College’s Academy for Science & Freedom, said, “I agree with Dr. Weinstein that our approach to this pandemic is the biggest public health mistake in history … We basically disregarded basic principles of public health.”

He and others who wrote the Great Barrington Declaration argued for a different approach: better-focused protection for high-risk old people while keeping schools open and not locking down the rest of society.

“I think now, over two years later, we have been proven right. Florida and Sweden were two exceptions to the strategy, and both Sweden and Florida have come out on top when it comes to both COVID mortality and, even more importantly, to all-cause mortality,” Kulldorff said.

Sweden has among the lowest rates in Europe. “I think it’s very tragic what we have gone through by mismanaging this pandemic so thoroughly.”

Weinstein discussed the high personal cost of his dissent from COVID orthodoxy.

YouTube shut down his channel, and two videos—one featuring an inventor of mRNA technology and the other with an expert on treating COVID—were removed. “They knocked out more than half of our family income inside of a single hour,” he said.

“There was a radical inversion of the normal medical order of things in this pandemic,” Weinstein said.

“The relationship between doctor and patient is essentially an intimate, sacred relationship. And what happened here is that there was a coup, in which what was swapped in place of that relationship was public health wisdom from bureaucrats,” he said.

“And the problem is that, had we not done anything coordinated with COVID, we would have learned clinically how to treat it. Doctors would have followed hunches. They would have tried things out. They would have discovered what worked and what didn’t. They would have talked to each other, and we would have gotten good at treating COVID.

“Instead, what happened was the policy came down from on high, instantaneously, and fully formed. And then that policy was protected with these draconian censorship measures. With slander.”

The system wasted the narrow window of time when it might have contained the virus’ spread.

“So, at this point, we have millions needlessly dead. We have trillions of dollars of wealth that have been destroyed, and the vital systems that humanity depends on have been stressed to their very limit. But worse than that, we have now made this virus into a permanent fellow traveler of humanity.”

‘Afraid to Speak Up’

Bhattacharya said he had been accused of being a fringe epidemiologist.

“The illusion is that there was a scientific consensus, that everybody, all the smart people, agreed. But actually, that was never true. The censorship was used to create that illusion of consensus,” he said.

He called out U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy, who put in place a policy to identify misinformation online and then gave out instructions for suppressing it to media and social media companies.

“You can’t have good public health policy in this kind of environment,” Bhattacharya said.

“People are afraid to speak up … Even qualified people are afraid to say no because they’re afraid that they’ll also get called ‘fringe.’ They’ll lose their ability to make a living, they’ll lose their reputation, and they stay silent as a result. Scientists always disagree with each other.”

Tracey Hoeg, a physician and epidemiologist at UC San Francisco, talked about how the California Medical Board got a bill through the legislature “telling physicians what they are and aren’t allowed to say to their patients, and that’s specifically related to COVID.”

DeSantis said, “The rule of thumb for us in Florida is whatever they do (in California), we do the opposite.”

His administration plans to move through Florida’s upcoming legislature a bill “that actually protects physicians’ First Amendment rights, and it protects their right to dissent from orthodoxy and from the establishment.”

Loss of Trust

“There’s been a tremendous loss of trust in public health,” said Steven Templeton, an immunology and microbiology professor at Indiana University School of Medicine.

“Fewer people are getting traditional vaccines,” he said. “This isn’t just, you know, anti-vax people. This is people who really lost trust in the system.”

Fraiman interjected that parents listening to the round table should not apply what they heard about the COVID vaccines to most other vaccines, which have nearly no side effects.

DeSantis listed various actions Florida had taken against federal lockdown policy and preserving individual rights.

One event highlighting the system’s corruption for him, he said, happened early on, in the spring of 2020. People were being told to stay home, and Florida, which didn’t follow that policy, had people going to the beach and playing golf.

“If you left your house, you’re almost like a bad person,” DeSantis said of the lockdown rules. “Until you started to have the George Floyd protests. And you had massive numbers of people that are meeting to protest.

“And these public health people wrote a letter, which like hundreds, maybe thousands of them signed, saying, ‘yes, we don’t think you should be leaving your house normally, but we endorse the protest,’ and basically said it was important that people went out even in big groups and protested.”

But they wouldn’t endorse other protests such as those against lockdowns, DeSantis said. “If that just didn’t take the mask off and just show, you know, that this is all a huge political farce,” he said.

“They have totally squandered any type of confidence or goodwill that people would have.”

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Also see my other blogs. Main ones below:

http://edwatch.blogspot.com (EDUCATION WATCH)

http://antigreen.blogspot.com (GREENIE WATCH)

http://pcwatch.blogspot.com (POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH) Also here

http://australian-politics.blogspot.com (AUSTRALIAN POLITICS)

http://snorphty.blogspot.com (TONGUE-TIED)

https://immigwatch.blogspot.com (IMMIGRATION WATCH) Also here

https://awesternheart.blogspot.com (THE PSYCHOLOGIST)

http://jonjayray.com/blogall.html More blogs

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Thursday, December 15, 2022



Twitter Files Confirm Censorship of the Great Barrington Declaration

Users have suspected Twitter of engaging in “shadowbanning” and suppressing the visibility of user accounts for years, even though the social media giant has adamantly denied the practice.

Yesterday (Dec 8 2022), using the information provided by Twitter under direction from new Chief Executive Elon Musk, journalist Bari Weiss, released a Twitter thread confirming these suspicions. Twitter secretly suppressed accounts, operated a “search blacklist,” and blocked certain content from trending, Weiss’ thread confirms. In response, Musk tweeted that Twitter plans to release software that will provide users with more clarity regarding shadowbanning.

Victims of Twitter’s practices include Dr. Jay Bhattacharya, Stanford professor of medicine and co-author of the Great Barrington Declaration (GBD). Weiss’s thread and The Twitter Files confirm what we’ve long suspected. Seeking to prop up Anthony Fauci and the lockdown policies he promoted in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Twitter (and other Big Tech companies) intentionally blacklisted, censored, suppressed, and targeted the GBD and its signers.

Within Twitter, the Strategic Response Team—Global Escalation Team, or SRT-GET, worked on hundreds of cases daily, actively filtering the visibility of select accounts.

For high-profile accounts, the “Site Integrity Policy, Policy Escalation Support,” team, known as “SIP-PES” would secretly make censorship decisions. The SIP-PES team comprised high-profile executives such as the Head of Legal, Policy, and Trust, Vijaya Gadde, Global Head of Trust & Safety, Yoel Roth, and former CEOs Jack Dorsey and Parag Agrawal.

In addition to Weiss, Twitter’s new leadership granted journalist Matt Taibbi access to its files. Below, Taibbi illustrates how Twitter deleted tweets at the behest of the Biden Presidential campaign.

Still unfolding in this investigation is the role of government officials in pressuring Twitter to engage in censorship over the COVID-19 pandemic. As revealed by a lawsuit earlier this year, internal company Slack messages show that Andy Slavitt, a former official on Joe Biden’s pandemic task force, met with Twitter officials and pressured them to restrict the account of COVID gadfly Alex Berenson. Slavitt also , delivered an ominous warning to executives at Facebook that the company would find itself in the White House’s crosshairs if it did not step up its efforts to restrict what the task force deemed to be “COVID misinformation.”

We now have conclusive evidence that public officials pressure private companies to do the dirty work of censorship. We have yet to discover, and may never know, how far the political involvement in social media censorship went, and which officials were given the power to silence. An ongoing lawsuit by the Attorneys General of Missouri and Louisiana is currently seeking to get to the bottom of those questions. Just two weeks ago, they obtained a court-ordered deposition from Anthony Fauci, in which they grilled him over similar suppressive tactics. Fauci proved evasive, invoking the “I don’t recall” line 174 times, but was caught in a lie about his direct personal involvement in the National Institutes of Health’s (NIH) efforts to smear and discredit the GBD’s authors as “fringe epidemiologists.”

GBD co-author Jay Bhattacharya was slapped with a secret “Trends Blacklist” tag by Twitter executives at some point after his account was created in September 2021, Weiss’s thread confirms. The blacklist tag effectively suppressed Bhattacharya’s tweets by preventing them from going viral or being picked up by Twitter’s trends algorithm. By all appearances, one or more persons on the company’s SIP-PES team made the decision to suppress scientifically grounded dissent against lockdowns.

Given the history surrounding social media giants, government officials, and the GBD, Battacharya’s shadowbanning is not surprising. Unfortunately, neither Weiss nor Taibii’s thread indicates why Twitter took such actions against Dr. Battacharya, a respected Stanford Professor.

What we do know is that Twitter’s actions are consistent with other social media censorship of the declaration, its authors, and supporters. Posts referencing the GBD were removed from popular Reddit threads such as r/COVID-19 and r/Coronavirus, and large online communities with millions of members. Google also played a role. In the week after the GBD’s release in October 2020, Google’s news site search algorithms suppressed mainstream coverage of the document by outlets such as Fox News and the Wall Street Journal.

Instead, it steered news searches for “Great Barrington Declaration” toward anti-GBD hit pieces in fringe venues such as the Byline Times, a blog featuring 9/11 conspiracy theorist Nafeez Ahmed. Google algorithms reportedly prioritized an anti-GBD political editorial in Wired Magazine that Anthony Fauci also mined for his own anti-GBD talking points in the press.

These acts of censorship occurred at a time when government officials were working hard behind the scenes to discredit the GBD and its authors. Most notably, NIAID director Anthony Fauci and NIH director Francis Collins collaborated to wage a “devastating published take down” campaign against the GBD, labeling it “nonsense” or “misinformation.”

Fauci and Collins’ actions are public information in emails first discovered through a Freedom of Information Act inquiry from AIER last winter. The Fauci-Collins emails made national news and became the subject of a Senate hearing in January 2021, where Senator Rand Paul grilled the White House’s COVID advisor over his involvement in the “take down” order.

Last week, Anthony Fauci denied any involvement in coordinating attacks on the GBD under deposition by the Missouri Attorney General. He claims that he was too busy to do so. His emails reveal a different story, though. Fauci expressed his agreement with Collins’ directive, and colluded with Deborah Birx to preempt discussion of the GBD at a White House COVID task force meeting. At some point, Fauci even directed his Chief of Staff Greg Folkers to assemble a list of anti-GBD political editorials, evidently to be parrotted back to the news media during interviews about the GBD. We still don’t know the full extent of Fauci’s efforts, because the NIH heavily redacted several pages of the requested records. But his involvement in the “take down” is undeniable.

Given the nature of Fauci’s smears, lies, and demeanor towards those who question his policy prescriptions, it is time to fully open up the public record at the NIH. It is time to scrutinize the decisions they made during COVID-19, including decisions to politicize science and suppress dissenting viewpoints.

We know that Twitter worked with the Biden campaign to suppress tweets. We know that top Biden administration officials pressured Twitter, Facebook, and presumably other companies to penalize dissenting viewpoints on COVID-19 policy, including lockdowns. We also know that Fauci, former White House Chief Medical Advisor, will leverage the media to undermine his perceived opponents and lie about it under oath. We know.

Private companies are free to censor user speech on their platforms, but when top government officials pressure them to take these actions, that crosses a different line.

Thanks to Musk releasing the Twitter files to Weiss and Taibbi, we have more insight into Twitter’s internal censorship policies. Unfortunately, until the NIH releases more information, the Twitter Files raise more questions than answers.

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With Passenger Mask Mandate Gone, Flight Turbulence Stats Improve Markedly

The friendly skies too often resembled “season’s beatings” shopping brawls during the pandemic, as the number of arguments and even fistfights surged on-board. Viral videos of the flight-and-fight mayhem frequently had a common denominator – the federal government’s mask requirement.

So it may come as little surprise that disruptions on commercial domestic flights have plummeted by 74% since the Biden administration’s mask mandate was overturned by a federal judge in April. The current rate is 1.7 unruly passengers per 10,000 flights, down from 6.4 per 10,000 in February.

But laws and rules created during the pandemic continue to spur federal investigations of passengers, while the federal government has spent untold sums in a legal battle to re-establish its authority, including the power to once again impose mask mandates.

Unions, meanwhile, are seeking stricter measures to give flight attendants more power on the plane.

To date this year, there have been 2,178 reports of unruly passengers, according to the FAA, compared with 87 over roughly the same period in 2019.

Incidents under investigation, which jumped from 183 in 2020 to 1,099 in 2021, have dropped by nearly 40% since a federal judge found the mandate exceeded the rule-making authority of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The U.S. Department of Justice, however, continues to challenge the ruling of U.S. District Judge Kathryn Kimball Mizell, a Trump nominee. A hearing in the Atlanta-based 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals is scheduled for January.

Leslie Manookian, president of the Health Freedom Defense Fund, which filed the lawsuit that overturned the CDC’s mask mandate, sees authoritarian impulses driving the continuing litigation.

“Most administrations of the last 10 to 20 years have sought this kind of power,” she said, likening COVID-era measures to the Patriot Act passed after the 9/11 attacks, which vastly increased the ability of government to surveil the public.

“It’s not just the Biden administration,” Manookian said. “It’s about increasing the power of the federal government as well as people who are not elected, and it’s not a partisan issue. They all want more power and are getting it through these emergencies.”

The CDC asked the DOJ, which represents government agencies, to appeal the travel mask decision shortly after it was handed down. The FAA and the DOJ did not respond to questions from RealClearInvestigations.

The legal struggle proceeds as a new peer-reviewed study adds to skepticism about the effectiveness of mask use in general. (In any case, passenger planes are required to have advanced air filtration.)

In a recent deposition in state-led litigation against alleged federal censorship, Dr. Anthony Fauci, retiring director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, couldn't name any studies showing mask effectiveness, according to Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt.

The CDC issued the directive on orders from President Biden on his first day in office in January 2021. The rule was a formal extension of what airlines imposed in 2020 under pressure from flight attendant unions.

Within six months of the federal mask mandate, 85% of all alleged transgressions in the air were related to mask-wearing, with the federal government and a spokesman for the union-backed American Airlines flight attendants declaring that the policy they insisted on had created a situation “out of control.”

The mask ruling on appeal now has 34 amicus filings, or statements from parties who claim an interest in the outcome of the case. Among those filing in support of the federal government are the American Medical Association and a group of 251 public health and legal officials and various professional public health associations, many of whom have been public about the importance of government’s role in controlling the pandemic.

Filing in support of Manookian’s group are the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons and a group of 338 flight attendants, pilots, and other airline workers from every major airline and most budget airlines. Several of the pilots in the filing are part of a group that sued the CDC in March, also noting that the mandate overstepped the CDC’s authority.

During the pandemic, the airlines became ground zero for the battle between individuals who sought to determine their own safety measures and the dictating model that was imposed by the government. The result was a series of highly publicized confrontations.

The mandate was so vastly unpopular that many flight attendants again began taking self-defense courses in preparation of doing battle with passengers. Flight attendant unions urged that voluntary training implemented in the wake of 9/11, including measures to thwart a terrorist-style assault, be made compulsory.

In March 2021, the FAA declared a “zero tolerance” policy for alleged disorderly passengers in a threatening announcement. The agency also imposed a new rule beefing up enforcement of alleged in-air infractions, insisting it would pursue legal action against anyone alleged to have violated the agency’s conduct rules.

“The rule was changed and what you have now is a greater percentage of cases that are making it all the way through to being fined that we never saw before,” said William McGee, who spent seven years in flight operations management and is now a senior fellow for aviation for the American Economic Liberties Project.

McGee said that while there is no room for violent behavior by passengers, there are “fundamental rights that include innocent until proven guilty. Some rules now are more like being on the high seas.”

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Also see my other blogs. Main ones below:

http://edwatch.blogspot.com (EDUCATION WATCH)

http://antigreen.blogspot.com (GREENIE WATCH)

http://pcwatch.blogspot.com (POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH) Also here

http://australian-politics.blogspot.com (AUSTRALIAN POLITICS)

http://snorphty.blogspot.com (TONGUE-TIED)

https://immigwatch.blogspot.com (IMMIGRATION WATCH) Also here

https://awesternheart.blogspot.com (THE PSYCHOLOGIST)

http://jonjayray.com/blogall.html More blogs

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Wednesday, December 14, 2022


DeSantis Announces Major Move Against COVID Vaccine Makers

Florida Republican Governor Ron DeSantis announced on Tuesday that he was seeking a grand jury investigation into the way COVID-19 vaccines were marketed and promoted and whether wrongdoing occurred.

"It is against the law to mislead and to misrepresent, particularly when you're talking about the efficacy of a drug," DeSantis said on Tuesday.

"Just recently, Florida got $3.2 billion through legal action against those responsible for the opioid crisis," he noted of previous legal action to hold drugmakers and drug sellers accountable. "It's not like this is something that is unprecedented," DeSantis said of his efforts to probe COVID-19 vaccines and the way they were presented to Floridians.

"Today, I'm announcing a petition with the Supreme Court of Florida to impanel a statewide grand jury to investigate any and all wrongdoing in Florida with respect to COVID-19 vaccines," DeSantis said.

"We anticipate that we will get the approval for that," DeSantis explained of his petition. The grand jury, DeSantis expects, "will be something that will be impaneled mostly likely in the Tampa Bay area."

DeSantis added that the grand jury "will come with legal processes that will be able to get more information" about any wrongdoing, and will "bring legal accountability for those who committed misconduct," he said.

The announcement on Tuesday is a follow-through on a promise Governor DeSantis made earlier in December when he pledged that his administration would "work to hold these manufacturers accountable for this mRNA [vaccine] because they said there was no side effects and we know that there have been a lot," DeSantis said of his plan to "bring some accountability" for COVID-19 vaccine makers, namely Pfizer and Moderna who produced the mRNA vaccines.

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Top Doctor: Long COVID is Being Exaggerated to Extort Taxpayers

John's Hopkins Medical School Professor Dr. Marty Makary, who also serves as a health advisor for Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin, is warning "long COVID" is being exaggerated in order to extort American taxpayers for more money.

"Long Covid is real. I have reliable patients who describe lingering symptoms after Covid infection. But public-health officials have massively exaggerated long Covid to scare low-risk Americans as our government gives more than $1 billion to a long Covid medical-industrial complex," Makary writes in the Wall Street Journal.

"The National Institutes for Health has been intensely focused on studying long Covid, spending nearly $1.2 billion on the condition. To date, the return on investment has been zero for the people suffering with it. But it’s been terrific for MRI centers, lab testing companies and hospitals that set up long Covid clinics," he continues. "I’ve talked to the staff at some of these clinics and it’s unclear what they are actually offering to people beyond a myriad of tests."

The White House continues to demand endless funding as Dr. Anthony Fauci claims the U.S. is still "in the middle" of a pandemic.

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Michigan Medicine Prof. of Biologic Nanotechnology investigates Adverse Reactions Associated with COVID-19 mRNA Vaccines

The founding Director of the Mary H. Weiser Food Allergy Center, and Ruth Dow Doan Professor at Michigan Medicine not to mention an exceptional allergy and clinical immunology specialist, Dr. James Baker Jr., spearheads a 200-patient interventional study titled “Assessing Safety of COVID-19 mRNA Vaccine Administration in the Setting of a Previous Adverse Reaction.” Launched in the spring, this single-group assignment open-label study runs till December 2024. In the study, the participant receives a dose of Pfizer-BioNTech (Comirnaty) or Moderna (Spikevax), both mRNA COVID-19 vaccines. The goal? Determine primary and secondary endpoints associated with safety of the mRNA-based vaccines. Specifically, the study team hypothesizes that the individuals that have had adverse reactions to a dose of an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine will tolerate an additional dose and those with a personal history of allergic reaction will tolerate vaccination with an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine.

While the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has deemed the mRNA COVID-19 vaccines safe and effective, various side effects and adverse events have been identified, including in the regulatory package insert. For example, a cardiovascular signal has been identified in the form of myocarditis and pericarditis in young persons.

Can persons that had an adverse reaction to the first or second dose of either mRNA -based COVID-19 vaccine (Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna) safely tolerate an additional dose if they have a personal history of allergic reaction who declined COVID-19 vaccination administration can safely tolerate an initial dose?

In this study funded by both the University of Michigan and the Wallace Foundation, Dr. Baker along with Dr. Charles Schuler IV, seek 200 eligible to receive an initial or additional dose of either Comirnaty or Spikevax.

Participants in this study will also be required to have 1-2 in person visits along with phone call follow up visits.

The study hypothesizes that individuals that have had adverse reactions to a dose of an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine will tolerate an additional dose, and those with a personal history of allergic reaction will tolerate vaccination with an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine.

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Pathological Syncytia Formation with mRNA Vaccines

One of the curious findings from the original randomized trials of mRNA vaccines was an explosive rate of early infection after the first injection as compared with placebo. In a recent paper from Sfera et al., the description of pathological syncytia or fusion between immune cells is described: “The LNP technology, to put it simply, mimics viral envelopes with externalized phosphatidylserine (ePS), a universal “eat me” signal, that directs immune cells to engulf the particle.

However, as ePS is also a potential “fuse me” signal, LNP may inadvertently facilitate the formation of pathological syncytia. Moreover, ePS may activate a disintegrin and metalloprotease 10 and 17 (ADAM10) (ADAM 17), master regulators of syncytia formation, contributing further to the unintended consequence of cell-cell fusion…As mRNA vaccines are based on pre-fusion epitopes, the fusion pathology may be undeterred, allowing viral infection by syncytia formation to continue unabated.

This is significant, as it could account for the reoccurrence of COVID-19 symptoms in fully vaccinated individuals. The authors point out that SARS-CoV-2 utilizes more than just the ACE2 receptor to gain entry into the fused cells and by overlooking this possibility, vaccine developers have made a blunder.

This is further complicated by the choice of lipid nanoparticles and polyethylene glycol which facilitate entry into organs were syncytia as well as Spike protein will incite inflammation and immune system regulation. Sfera also considers pregnancy: “Several studies demonstrated that SARS-CoV-2 can activate HERV-W, an ancestral gene that encodes for the physiological placental fusogen syncytin-1 responsible for the merger of trophoblasts during the early pregnancy. This suggests that the reproductive post-vaccine events may be triggered by the furin cleavage site pathology.” Such processes could occur in the gravid uterus and compound the bleeding and clotting risks of ill-advised vaccination is this special population.

In summary Sfera et al. point out the following blind spots of well-funded DARPA consultants, BARDA funded academic researchers, and later, by Pfizer and Moderna in mRNA vaccine development: 1) pathologic syncytia formation, 2) use of lipid nanoparticles with PEG, 3) failure to consider SARS-CoV-2 could use alternative points of cell entry other than ACE2 (metalloprotease pathway, antibody dependent enhancement, cell penetrating peptides, viroporins).

With billions of people rushed into indiscriminate mRNA vaccination, virologists and immunologists will be picking up the pieces of a failed vaccine campaign that has left so many at risk for more SARS-CoV-2 infections and progressive complications over the months and years to come.

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Also see my other blogs. Main ones below:

http://edwatch.blogspot.com (EDUCATION WATCH)

http://antigreen.blogspot.com (GREENIE WATCH)

http://pcwatch.blogspot.com (POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH) Also here

http://australian-politics.blogspot.com (AUSTRALIAN POLITICS)

http://snorphty.blogspot.com (TONGUE-TIED)

https://immigwatch.blogspot.com (IMMIGRATION WATCH) Also here

https://awesternheart.blogspot.com (THE PSYCHOLOGIST)

http://jonjayray.com/blogall.html More blogs

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Tuesday, December 13, 2022


Soft censorship of my Tongue Tied blog is now in place

Google has put the blog behind a scare warning. Free speech is dangerous in their view, apparently. I can't say I am surprised. They have done the same to my Political Correctness Watch blog.

I do however back the blog up elsewhere so readers who encounter the scare notice can go straight to the backup site if they wish. See here. I will upload to the backup site only minutes after the original site updates

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My other blogs. Main ones below:

http://edwatch.blogspot.com (EDUCATION WATCH)

http://antigreen.blogspot.com (GREENIE WATCH)

http://pcwatch.blogspot.com (POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH)

http://australian-politics.blogspot.com/ (AUSTRALIAN POLITICS)

http://dissectleft.blogspot.com (DISSECTING LEFTISM)

https://immigwatch.blogspot.com/ (IMMIGRATION WATCH)

https://awesternheart.blogspot.com/ (THE PSYCHOLOGIST)

http://jonjayray.com/blogall.html More blogs

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Danish Study Published in Nature Reveals the Prejudice Unvaccinated Individuals Face in Most Countries

The results of a global study from Denmark’s Aarhus University, reveal that across the globe people show prejudice and discriminatory attitudes towards individuals not vaccinated against COVID-19. The findings have been published in the journal Nature.

The study is part of the research project How Democracies Cope with COVID-19: A Data-Driven Approach (HOPE), https://hope-project.dk/#/about supported by the Carlsberg Foundation. It was made in cooperation with the Centre for the Experimental-Philosophical Study of Discrimination, supported by the Danish National Research Foundation.

The researchers set out to assess whether people express discriminatory attitudes in family and political settings across groups defined by COVID-19 vaccination status. Specifically, the sought to quantify discriminatory attitudes between vaccinated and unvaccinated citizens in 21 countries, covering a diverse set of cultures across the world.

Across three conjoint experimental studies (N=15,233), researchers demonstrated that vaccinated people express discriminatory attitudes towards the unvaccinated, often as high as the discriminatory attitudes often seen in common targets including immigrants, drug-addicts and ex-convicts. In contrast, there was little evidence that unvaccinated individuals display discriminatory attitudes towards vaccinated people.

Many vaccinated people do not want close relatives to marry an unvaccinated person. They are also inclined to think that the unvaccinated are incompetent as well as untrustworthy, and they generally feel antipathy against them.

Discriminatory attitudes are more strongly expressed in cultures with stronger cooperative norms. According to the researchers, the reason for this appears to be that the vaccinated perceive the unvaccinated as free riders. The findings suggest that contributors to the public good of epidemic control (i.e., the vaccinated) react with discriminatory attitudes against perceived free-riders (i.e., the unvaccinated).

Part of the overall study looking solely in the United States showed that not only do vaccinated people harbor prejudice against the unvaccinated, but they also think they should be denied fundamental rights. For instance, the unvaccinated should not be allowed to move into the neighborhood or express their political views on social media freely, without fear of censorship.

“It is likely that we will encounter similar support for the restriction of rights in other countries, seeing as the prejudice and antipathy can be found across continents and cultures,” said co-author Michael Bang Petersen, who is a professor of political science at Aarhus University.

With low vaccine uptake still a challenge to pandemic management, the researchers warn authorities against employing a rhetoric of moral condemnation in their attempt increase vaccination rates.

“Moral condemnation may strengthen the cleavages and further feelings of exclusion that have led many unvaccinated to refuse the vaccine in the first place. Our prior research has shown that transparent communication about the safety and effectiveness of vaccines is a more viable public-health strategy for increasing vaccine uptake in the long term,” said Michael Bang Petersen.

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Molecular Changes linked to to Long COVID

One of the first studies of its kind, researchers at Mount Sinai in New York City associate long COVID symptoms with changes in gene expression during acute COVID-19. Specifically, researchers employed with this prestigious academic center in Manhattan are the first to publish a study associating changes in the blood gene expression during COVID-19 with post-acute sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 infection (long COVID) in patients over a year post hospitalization for severe COVID-19. Published in Nature Medicine on December 8, the team highlights the need for greater attention at the infection stage for improved understanding of how the processes that commence eventually turn into long COVID. The hope is that this research can help scientists better understand how the processes that start with SARS-CoV-2 infection led to long COVID. The goal? Develop prevention strategies and treatment options for COVID-19 survivors experiencing ongoing long COVID problems.

What did the Mount Sinai team discover?

Among other things, the New York City-based team found two molecularly distinct subsets of long COVID symptoms with opposing gene expression patterns during acute COVID-19 in plasma cells, the immune system’s antibody-producing cells.

In patients who went on to develop lung problems, antibody production genes were less abundant. However, for patients with other symptoms such as the loss of smell or taste and sleep disruptions, the same antibody production genes were more abundant instead.

Mount Sinai researchers led by co-corresponding author Noam D. Beckmann, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Medicine (Data Driven and Digital Medicine) and Associate Director of Data Science Strategy at The Charles Bronfman Institute for Personalized Medicine at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai wrote that these opposing patterns observed in the same cells, as well as additional unique patterns observed in other cell types. They point to the existence of multiple independent processes leading to different long COVID symptoms; importantly, these processes are already present during acute infection.

Principal Investigator's Point of View

Dr. Beckmann went on the record “Our findings show that molecular processes leading to long COVID are already detectable during COVID-19 infection,” which of course has implications for future care regimens. The Mount Sinai professor continued, “Furthermore, we see the start of multiple molecularly distinct paths leading to long COVID, providing a unique viewpoint into differences between long-term symptoms.”

Study Data Sources

Using the Mount Sinai COVID-19 Biobank, the researchers examined gene expression data in blood samples from more than 500 patients hospitalized with COVID-19 between April and June 2020. More than 160 of these patients provided self-reported assessments of symptoms still present six months or more after hospitalization. The team tested each gene expressed in the blood for association with each long COVID symptom, accounting for ICU admission, COVID-19 severity during hospitalization, sex, age, and other variables. The team then tested for associations specific to each of 13 different types of immune cells, including plasma cells. Finally, these associations were categorized by whether they matched up with changes in patients’ levels of antibodies specific to the virus.

“For long COVID symptoms, like smell or taste problems, connecting antibody gene expression in plasma cells with the actual levels of antibodies against the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein demonstrates a direct link to the body’s response to the virus,” said lead author Ryan C. Thompson, Ph.D., Data Science Analyst at The Charles Bronfman Institute for Personalized Medicine. “On the other hand, the gene expression pattern for lung problems does not match up with SARS-CoV-2-specific antibody levels, highlighting the different immune processes leading to long COVID that are triggered by COVID-19.”

Long COVID Poorly Defined

The reality is that long COVID still remains poorly defined and future studies should take the initial stage of infection into account to characterize the molecular processes of long COVID more comprehensively and identify biomarkers that can help predict, treat, and prevent prolonged symptoms.

“Our findings show there is the potential to use data from the infection stage to predict what might happen to the patient months later,” said co-corresponding author Alexander W. Charney, MD, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Genetics and Genomic Sciences, and Co-Director of The Charles Bronfman Institute for Personalized Medicine. “We should not ignore the infection phase in research on long COVID—this is clearly a critical window of time where the body’s response to SARS-CoV-2 might be setting the stage for what is to come.”

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Exaggerated COVID-19 Death Rates used as Fright Factors

What did Emergency Use Authorizations (EUAs) do to lower the absolute risk of dying from COVID-19?

The phrases "fully vaccinated" and "fully antibody protected" mean different things, obviously. There is not a causation graph that proves that being "fully vaccinated" (a protocol of two shots, that is no longer a measure of efficacy or protection against newer SARS-CoV-2 variants) is any indication of Absolute Risk Reduction (ARR) from the risk of death from SARS-CoV-2. Since the original EUA products have diminishing benefits, the COVID-19 vaccination booster and bivalent booster rates are the only vaccination rates that should be considered to determine the ARR of deaths as a result of the COVID-19 variants of today. Even the nonvaccinated-person (as variable as this "group" is) COVID-19 death rates have changed.

There are hidden reasons for stories to come out the way they do. The recent stories that are being now told -- of achieving a universal saturation in humans of natural and injection-assisted antibodies to the variants of SARS-CoV-2 -- have many tangents. With these data from stories (clinical data are also the basis of "storytelling"), statisticians try to come up with one or two figures that represent statistics to comfort themselves with knowledge, such as how many individuals have died from COVID-19 -- 6,657,680 human deaths is a number that was published yesterday. But what do the statisticians' collective knowledge, represented by one figure, mean?

It means, for one thing, that only those official deaths, that were counted by official counters and recorded by official record keepers, that are the basis for COVID-19 policies and actions -- are not revealing everything we need to know. COVID-19 "death rates" are calculated for as many nations and geographic regions as can be officially monitored, but it is not now reasonable to call these numbers absolutely accurate figures.

Another confounding thing is that the number of deaths of individuals who were sometime-in-the-last-three-years infected with SARS-CoV-2 virus -- "had COVID-19" -- but were not only sick with COVID-19 (they were interfered with) -- having other added reasons that they died.

Yet another confounding factor to the official count is the number of deaths that occurred while attempting to mitigate the COVID-19 infections and contagion scope, with such actions "inadvertently leading to deaths of more individuals" than were in the death-by-COVID-19 designation (think: evasive tactics such as taking medications, receiving vaccinations, trying activities to avoid death from the virus, deaths at the hands of hospital staff, suicides, depression and personal abuses, etc.).

There are also the numbers of individuals that have not been revealed to the officials, those who have neither reported their SARS-CoV-2 infections, nor their recoveries, nor have their determined causes of deaths been clearly confirmed, nor has there been, or will be, a clear inventory of their virus-sharing contacts.

All these are confounding factors. This latter category -- 'contacts' -- is a juicy morsel of human geographical information, with absolute accuracy out of the reach of those demanding to convert us to that theory that the world surveillance of the human population would lower death rates.

But such a strained definition of correlation (of officials having knowledge of where we all are, what we own, what we spend, who we associate with -- correlated to our personal safety through submission to official policy) is a false authority attempt and an untenable conspiracy* that is yet currently being attempted by some so as to become centrally global in scope(if that ever made sense) -- just convince people to waive their own rights temporarily for "the sake of all". The COVID-19 death figure is to be your motivation to serve others in the way the government has found to be approved. Obey the mandates, lower the death rate -- is the mantra.

During this current COVID-19 disease period of changing variants, there is a current single figure representing the death rate from the disease called COVID-19, using one figure. This is supposed to scare us into giving our wills to a central organization that is planning to eradicate the disease COVID-19. We can admit that the figure is indicative of a large number of deaths, roughly calculated at 853.8 deaths of individual human beings -- per million population. With the starting point of "a nearly accurate population estimate" for the world of 8,002,627,404 live humans (the Current World Population from the Worldometers website at 0815 hours Mountain Standard Time on 12-10-2022), we can divide 6,657,680 (current official COVID-19 deaths) by 8,002,627,404 and then worry about how to stop that number from becoming a larger number:

It is not reasonable for the World Health Organization to consider being the One that is skilled and powerful -- so much so that it can attempt to persuade and/or mandate us all to a single-source treatment policy. It is advisory only, and advice can be and will be, in many cases in this vast world --- unuseable when that advice is also untenable.

The current conspiracy (or the milder tone of "collusion") to surveil and control our healthcare through the central organization WHO is untenable. The plans to convince us are dependent on waiving rights of masses of human populations in various and diverse countries.

There are 0.083194% of the World's Human Population that have officially died from COVID-19. Or for more clarity, the decimal fraction of the world's humans that have died from COVID-19, officially, is 0.000831937

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Also see my other blogs. Main ones below:

http://edwatch.blogspot.com (EDUCATION WATCH)

http://antigreen.blogspot.com (GREENIE WATCH)

http://pcwatch.blogspot.com (POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH) Also here

http://australian-politics.blogspot.com (AUSTRALIAN POLITICS)

http://snorphty.blogspot.com (TONGUE-TIED)

https://immigwatch.blogspot.com (IMMIGRATION WATCH) Also here

https://awesternheart.blogspot.com (THE PSYCHOLOGIST)

http://jonjayray.com/blogall.html More blogs

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Monday, December 12, 2022




Pharmaceutical Trials: When Left’s Obsession With Race Kills

One of the last things Francis Collins, then-director of the National Institutes of Health, did before retiring was to pressure Moderna into delaying the release of its COVID-19 vaccine because he wanted more minorities in its clinical trials.

Moderna’s CEO, Stephane Bancel, was happy to oblige him, saying that diversity “matters more to us than speed.”

That decision was not based on science, and it likely cost lives. A new study by law professor Michael Conklin, and a new book by another law professor, David Bernstein, explain why.

The race labels that we are all familiar with—black, white, Asian, Hispanic, etc.—are not scientific. Quite the contrary, Bernstein traces their origins to “a combination of amateur anthropology and sociology, interest-group lobbying, incompetence, inertia, lack of public oversight, and happenstance.” They have no basis in biology, tell us nothing about genetics, and are therefore useless to medical research.

For that reason, when the federal government standardized our race labels in 1977, it said that they “should not be interpreted as being scientific or anthropological in nature.” Since then, scores of scholars and researchers have warned that our arbitrary labels should never be used in medical research.

But the bureaucrats at the Food and Drug Administration and National Institutes of Health, and the leadership of at least one of our major pharmaceutical companies, ignored them.

Conklin explains that “there is no statute or regulation that explicitly mandates pharmaceutical trials reach any racial quota among their study participants,” but the FDA requires companies to gather such data and “recommends” that they submit it when seeking approval for new medicines.

The FDA claims that “[e]nsuring people from diverse backgrounds join clinical trials is key to advancing health equity.” But, as any doctor or medical researcher who isn’t blinded by ideology will tell you, it isn’t.

Ideology, however, trumps science for many on the left.

Take Harvard Medical School professor Farrah Mateen, for example. In a 2021 paper, she called for racial quotas in medical trials to advance “health equity” even while admitting that “[r]ace is a social construct, a poorly defined marker of genetic diversity, and an imprecise proxy for the relationship between genetics and ancestry.”

In truth, our arbitrary race labels are utterly useless to the science of medicine, which needs to understand how drugs will react to biological and genetic traits.

To give an example of how useless race labels are for medical research, consider the category “black.” According to U.S. law, “black” is anyone descended from one of the black tribes of Africa. The race-obsessed, like Collins, Bancel, or Mateen, might think that this category tracks at least somewhat reliably with biological and genetic traits. After all, they might say, all these people trace their origin to one continent and share a skin color.

But the truth is that there is more genetic diversity among Africans than between other geographically organized people groups. In fact, there is more diversity among Africans than there is between Africans and Eurasians.

Genetic diversity is a lot more than skin color. Not that the race-obsessed care.

If our medical experts, bureaucrats, and drug manufacturers were interested in science, they wouldn’t use our arbitrary race labels in medical research. And if they cared about saving lives, they wouldn’t have delayed the rollout of a COVID-19 vaccine so that they could increase the color diversity of clinical trials.

But they weren’t interested in science, and they didn’t care about saving lives. At least, they didn’t care as much about those things as they cared about signaling their obedience to ideology.

People likely died because of Moderna’s decision to delay its vaccine. We’ll never know how many. But even if we did, it wouldn’t change these people’s behavior. Reality finds no purchase in the minds of the race-obsessed.

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Elon Musk Annihilates Two Leftist Shibboleths With A Single Five Word Tweet, And They Are Big Mad

It's no secret that billionaire Elon Musk has done nearly everything possible to rile up the political left since his purchase of Twitter finalized a month and a half ago, from freeing formerly frozen conservative accounts to releasing the Twitter Files detailing how previous management put their thumb on the scales to censor the right. However, a simple five-word tweet on Sunday morning may have finally driven them all insane permanently.

"My pronouns are Prosecute/Fauci," Musk wrote at 5:58 a.m. eastern time Sunday. So yeah, it was much earlier in Texas or California where Musk was likely located, because when has sleep - which the guy never does anyway - ever gotten in the way of an opportunity to massively troll the left?

If you're counting, that's two leftist shibboleths destroyed by Musk, a self-identified political centrist who believes in free speech. First, pronouns. Leftists love them some pronouns, especially ones that describe something different from someone's actual biological sex or are made up out of thin air. So, as actress Gina Carano found out the hard way, they get big mad when someone pokes fun at their new religion.

The other leftist shibboleth is, of course, America's Doctor Himself, Dr. Anthony Fauci, long may his name be blessed. While anyone with half a brain is at least questioning Fauci's approach to lockdowns, school closures, alternative Covid treatments, masks, and vaccine mandates as policies that resulted in massive suffering and death, leftists still revere the guy because he's one of them and they naturally agree with his totalitarian approach to tackling the pandemic.

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China’s dangerous zero-Covid retreat

China’s scrapping of strict Covid controls represents not so much a shift in gear, as a screeching hand-break turn. It is abrupt and haphazard and comes at a particularly risky time. Hundreds of millions of people will soon be on the move for Chinese New Year, which is next month, and the spread of the virus, already fast, will accelerate rapidly. The transition to living with Covid has not been easy for any country but will be particularly difficult for China – and dangerous for the communist party.

After almost three years of instilling fear – with brutal lockdowns, mass testing, sweeping quarantine and claustrophobic surveillance – the virus is suddenly being portrayed as quite benign

Only last month Xi Jinping was being portrayed as the commander in chief of a ‘people’s war’ against the virus. There was to be no turning back until it was defeated. In his address to the communist party congress Xi did not even note the enormous economic costs, the social toll and the mental stress he was imposing on China – and those brave enough to point them out were quickly silenced.

Now the very term ‘zero Covid’, used as a demonstration of party virility and a measure of superiority over bungling western democracies, has been eradicated from party propaganda. After almost three years of instilling fear – three years of at times brutal lockdowns, mass testing, sweeping quarantine and claustrophobic surveillance – the virus is suddenly being portrayed as quite benign. ‘Everyone should treat it with a normal heart – there is no need to be nervous or even fearful,’ declared Wang Guiqiang, director of the infectious diseases department at Peking University First Hospital.

In a review this week of China’s three-year fight against Covid, Xinhua, the state news agency, not only avoided any mention of contentious lockdowns, such as the two-month long shutdown of Shanghai earlier this year, but also made no mention of zero Covid – as if the policy had never existed. It was a rewriting of history, remarkable even by communist party standards. Thanks to party leadership, China had ‘survived the most difficult moment’, it insisted. Hysteric alarmism was replaced by what seems a remarkable complacency, given the challenges China still faces.

When China’s National Health Commission said this week that it was dropping many of its quarantine and mass testing measures, and that it would reduce the use of lockdowns, it presented the change as a logical response to the changing nature of the threat. But the party does not do logical. Its principal concerns will have been the mounting damage to the economy and the wave of unrest that has swept China.

It has been reported that Xi was swayed by a letter sent by Terry Gou, the head of Foxconn, which assembles most of the world’s iPhones for Apple. Its vast factory complex in Zhengzhou was the scene last month of large-scale rioting. Gou warned Xi that strict Covid controls threatened China’s central position in global supply chains. That may well have had some influence, but more likely the trigger for easing restrictions was the often-violent protests against zero Covid that swept across China. They shook the party leadership because they were so geographically widespread and involved a broad range of social groups from migrant and factory workers to students and the urban elite. It was not so easy to blame the unrest on the usual foreign ‘dark hand’ or other ‘bad elements’ – it was an expression of popular anger and frustration, and it targeted Xi and the party.

The party does not do admissions of failure, although that is what its easing of controls amounts to. The country is ill-prepared for the sudden switch away from Xi’s zero-Covid dogmatism. A vast bureaucracy and industry has been built to impose Xi’s will and to fight his fight – as represented by the massed ranks of white hazmat-suited enforcers. But they have not put in place the basic tools needed to live with the virus. Only two thirds of those aged 80 and over, the most vulnerable to serious illness or death, have received the initial course of vaccination, usually two shots, and only two-fifths of this age group have had a booster. Chinese vaccines are less effective than their western counterparts, especially against the latest Omicron variants, and Xi has stubbornly refused to allow the import of foreign jabs. There is also little natural immunity, since most people have until now been shielded from the virus. According to government statistics, China has 3.6 intensive care beds per 100,000 people, compared to 29.4 in the United States and a little over seven in the UK.

The healthcare system could be quickly overwhelmed, and modelling of the likely impact does not make for comfortable reading for healthcare workers – or the party. Up to a million people are at risk of dying in a ‘winter wave’ of Covid, according to projections reported by the Financial Times. Figures from Wigram Capital Advisors, which provided modelling to governments during the pandemic, suggest the number of deaths could reach 20,000 a day by mid-March, with the demand for critical care beds peaking at ten times capacity.

Chinese New Year falls on 22 January – the year of the Rabbit. In any usual year the annual holiday sees the world’s largest migration of people, with perhaps 400 million on the move. This time could be even busier with considerable pent-up demand for travel and a hunger to see loved ones after years of restrictions. Not only does it stand to be a ‘super-spreader’ event, but inadequately prepared rural areas could be overwhelmed by the virus.

After their initial euphoria, financial markets have become much more cautious. The economy is unlikely to quickly bounce back. Few people are ruling out an abrupt reversal by the party, imposing travel restrictions or even more severe lockdowns if there is an explosion in the number of cases. But the rapid return of the zero-Covid straight-jacket could in turn trigger more unrest among a population emboldened by what is seen widely as the success of their protests in forcing rare concessions from the party.

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Also see my other blogs. Main ones below:

http://edwatch.blogspot.com (EDUCATION WATCH)

http://antigreen.blogspot.com (GREENIE WATCH)

http://pcwatch.blogspot.com (POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH) Also here

http://australian-politics.blogspot.com (AUSTRALIAN POLITICS)

http://snorphty.blogspot.com (TONGUE-TIED)

https://immigwatch.blogspot.com (IMMIGRATION WATCH) Also here

https://awesternheart.blogspot.com (THE PSYCHOLOGIST)

http://jonjayray.com/blogall.html More blogs

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Sunday, December 11, 2022



FDA Says Ivermectin Doesn’t Work Against COVID-19 but Points to Studies That Show It Does

The FDA’s website states, “Currently available data do not show ivermectin is effective against COVID-19.”

But half of the studies to which the FDA points support using ivermectin against COVID-19, according to the review.

The papers cut against the drug agency’s repeated exhortations for people not to take ivermectin for COVID-19. In Twitter posts, public statements, and emails, FDA officials have repeatedly warned against ivermectin. Some of those statements triggered a lawsuit from doctors who say the agency’s role is to approve drugs, not to issue recommendations. The suit was dismissed this week.

Dr. Pierre Kory, who frequently prescribes ivermectin for COVID-19 and co-authored a meta-analysis that concluded the drug is effective against the illness, told The Epoch Times that the government’s position on ivermectin “is one of the most glaring examples of the corruption of modern evidence based medicine.”

“There’s one message they want everyone to understand. And that message is that ivermectin doesn’t work,” Kory said. “That’s not a scientific conclusion, that’s theirs. That’s their perverted and distorted interpretation of the data.”

The FDA’s media office did not respond to a request for comment.

Dr. Janet Woodcock, a top official at the agency who was its commissioner from January 2021 to February 2022, told The Epoch Times via email that “ivermectin has been shown to be ineffective against COVID in large randomized trials.”

Studies

The FDA’s website points to a U.S. National Library of Medicine database of studies analyzing ivermectin against COVID-19. There are 88 studies listed in the database.

Out of studies that are listed, have been completed, and have results reported, half show or indicate ivermectin effectively combats or prevents COVID-19, according to the review by The Epoch Times.

They include papers reporting on results from randomized, controlled trials, which are often offered as the highest level of evidence by U.S. government officials. Such trials feature a group that receives a placebo and a group that receives the drug, randomization into groups, and blinding, or shielding operators and/or patients from the knowledge of which participants are receiving ivermectin.

Among the papers is a randomized, blinded, controlled trial that found people who received ivermectin and doxycycline, an antibiotic, recovered faster from COVID-19 than those who received a placebo.

Bangladeshi researchers reported the results from the trial of 363 participants on May 13, 2021, in the Journal of International Medical Research.

“Patients with mild-to-moderate COVID-19 infection treated with ivermectin plus doxycycline recovered earlier, were less likely to progress to more serious disease, and were more likely to be COVID-19 negative by RT-PCR on day 14,” they said. PCR has been used to test for COVID-19.

Another paper, published on July 7, 2022, in the International Journal of Infectious Diseases, found that that ivermectin decreased the level of COVID-19 and its viability. Israeli researchers in the randomized, controlled, open label trial compared 47 patients who received ivermectin against 42 who received placebos and said that “ivermectin significantly reduced the time of viral shedding and affected viral viability when initiated in the first week after evidence of infection.”

“There were lower viral loads and less viable cultures in the ivermectin group, which shows its anti-SARS-CoV-2 activity,” the researchers said. SARS-CoV-2 is a name for the virus that causes COVID-19.

A third paper concluded that a regimen of ivermectin and carrageenan works as a prophylaxis, or preventative medicine. Argentinian researchers found in the observational trial involving 229 health care workers that ivermectin helped prevent COVID-19 infection. A followup study involving nearly 1,200 workers confirmed the results. Both sets were reported in the Journal of Clinical and Biomedical Investigation on Nov. 17, 2020.

Ivermectin “could have saved so many lives,” H├ęctor Carvallo, one of the researchers, told The Epoch Times via email, adding that “it’s been a crime against mankind to prevent its prescription.”

Some other studies, including the largest ones, either found indications that ivermectin works against COVID-19 but did not achieve statistical significance or found no evidence that ivermectin is effective.

That includes a randomized, controlled, double-blind 2021 study by Mexican researchers that found ivermectin did not significantly impact hospitalization duration or mortality, and a randomized, controlled, double-blind 2022 trial by U.S. researchers that concluded ivermectin did not prevent hypoxemia, hospitalization, or death.

FDA Intervention

Scientists in Australia in April 2020 found that ivermectin worked well against the COVID-19 virus in cell culture, prompting doctors in multiple countries, including Peru and the United States, to start using it against the new illness.

Ivermectin is approved by the FDA to treat parasites. One version is used on horses and other animals.

The FDA quickly warned against using the animal form and said that people should “not take any form of ivermectin unless it has been prescribed to them by a licensed health care provider and is obtained through a legitimate source.”

Studies later in the year suggested ivermectin worked well in humans who had COVID-19, including halting the progression of disease (pdf), helping patients improve faster, and preventing COVID-19 infection, though other studies returned results that did not support ivermectin as a treatment.

The FDA maintained its stance against COVID-19, and created a new web page on March 5, 2021. It initially said, “The FDA has not reviewed data to support use of ivermectin in COVID-19 patients to treat or to prevent COVID-19; however, some initial research is underway.”

In August 2021, the FDA urged people against using ivermectin by telling them that “you are not a horse.” It linked to the page, which was updated the following month with the language it now contains about data not showing ivermectin is effective.

American doctors are allowed to prescribe drugs approved for one use for a different use, a practice known as off-label. But doctors who prescribed ivermectin soon found that many pharmacies stopped filling prescriptions, citing advice from the FDA and other U.S. government bodies.

Half of Studies Supportive

The FDA does not cite studies on its website to support its statement that data “do not show ivermectin is effective against COVID-19.”

“Clinical trials assessing ivermectin tablets for the prevention or treatment of COVID-19 in people are ongoing,” the agency adds, providing a link to the U.S. National Library of Medicine’s database.

Of the 88 studies listed there, 56 fall under one of three categories: have not been completed, were completed but results have not been reported, or were completed and have since been retracted or otherwise withdrawn.

Of the remaining 32, 16 found or indicate ivermectin is effective as a COVID-19 treatment or prophylactic, according to the Epoch Times review.

Two of the trials were randomized, controlled, and blinded. Nine others were randomized and controlled but were not blinded at all. Most of the rest were observational, meaning they analyzed data from real-world settings like hospitals, or used observational data to create what’s known as a synthetic control group.

The set of papers includes results of a randomized, controlled, open label observational trial (pdf) that found ivermectin combined with doxycycline, an antibiotic, reduced the time to recovery and the mortality rate, and a randomized, controlled, double-blinded trial that found ivermectin and doxycycline quickened recovery and patients were less likely to see their disease progress.

Of the 16 other studies, six reported mixed results. For instance, Spanish researchers reported in The Lancet in February 2021 that ivermectin did not have an impact on testing results, but that there was “a marked reduction” of self-reported symptoms such as loss of smell and cough, and lower levels of viral loads. The result “warrants assessment in larger trials,” the researchers said.

The remaining 10 studies returned results that did not favor ivermectin or did not achieve statistical significance.

U.S. researchers, for example, found that ivermectin probably worked better than a placebo, but that the results did not achieve statistical significance, prompting them to say in October that “this study adds to the growing evidence that there is not a clinically relevant treatment effect of ivermectin at this dose and duration.”

The FDA did not respond to a request for comment on the revelation that half of the studies it points to support using ivermectin (IVM) against COVID-19.

Woodcock, the FDA’s principal deputy commissioner, reviewed the studies. She was unimpressed.

The Bangladeshi trial, for instance, was criticized for primarily including young persons, and having a higher number of dropouts in the placebo arm. Woodcock said the Israeli study did not report “clinical outcomes” and noted many of the other papers had small numbers of participants.

“There are only a couple studies here that really look at the effects of IVM and see a positive clinical effect and they are much smaller than the negative studies,” Woodcock told The Epoch Times in an email.

The trials in favor of ivermectin are on the smaller side, and more likely to be observational. But that doesn’t necessarily mean they are inferior, Kory said. He cited research that found there was little difference between observational studies and randomized-controlled trials, as well as a paper that said “study design is only one factor that determines study quality.”

The FDA isn’t the only government group opposed to using ivermectin to treat COVID-19. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) COVID-19 Treatment Guidelines Panel recommends against it, citing several of the larger trials that found little or no benefit for ivermectin. The panel cites none of the papers that found a positive effect.

Criticism of Design

Many of those studies have been criticized over their design. One major factor, critics say, is participants not receiving ivermectin soon after a positive test or the start of symptoms.

In one trial, researchers acknowledged that more than 4 out of 10 participants did not receive the dosage level that was listed as the “goal dose.” Further, the median time from the start of symptoms to treatment was six days, and the treatment duration was just three days. The trial, called ACTIV-6, was backed by the NIH.

The corresponding author for the trial did not return a request for comment. The authors said that “there was no evidence of a differential treatment effect based on the median time of symptom onset to receipt of study drug.”

In another trial that reported little difference between the treatment and control groups, the treatment group received ivermectin days after starting to show symptoms.

Ivermectin works best when applied within 24 hours of symptom manifestation, according to a meta regression of ivermectin studies performed by by an unnamed group of researchers.

“They literally try to treat as late into the disease as they can, for a short duration as they can, at the lowest dose that they can. And they also try to find as healthy and mild patients as you can,” Kory said.

“And yet, when they conduct those kinds of trials, it’s on the front page of a high-impact journal and the conclusion states, ‘this shows there’s no role for ivermectin in treatments.’ Absolutely absurd. And so it’s it’s really just corruption of these trials.”

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Also see my other blogs. Main ones below:

http://edwatch.blogspot.com (EDUCATION WATCH)

http://antigreen.blogspot.com (GREENIE WATCH)

http://pcwatch.blogspot.com (POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH) Also here

http://australian-politics.blogspot.com (AUSTRALIAN POLITICS)

http://snorphty.blogspot.com (TONGUE-TIED)

https://immigwatch.blogspot.com (IMMIGRATION WATCH) Also here

https://awesternheart.blogspot.com (THE PSYCHOLOGIST)

http://jonjayray.com/blogall.html More blogs

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