As a legislator and as a citizen, I respect our public health leaders and the process they go through to make decisions. I usually trust the conclusions they reach and accept the recommendations that they make. My recent survey about vaccine mandates suggests that most of my constituents feel the same way.
Yet, I never lightly dismiss the views of my constituents who disagree. Two constituents went to the effort to send me copies of Robert F. Kennedy Jr.’s book, The Real Anthony Fauci. I did read the first section of the book, the section that speaks to management of the current pandemic. I skimmed the rest of the book which speaks to older history. I also examined some of the sources that RFK Jr. relies on.
RFK Jr., perceives a malicious conspiracy to promote vaccines over alternative health care methods. The basic narrative is that a vaccine cartel exaggerated the dangers of COVID-19 and discredited lower-cost treatments — like Vitamin D, Ivermectin, and Hydroxychloroquine — with the goal of making profits on vaccines.
The lead villain in the narrative is Dr. Fauci, the head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. A villain needs to be larger than life. RFK Jr. says that Fauci wields “power enjoyed by few rulers and no doctor in history.” (Page xvi.) Consider that statement in light of the many state and local officials across the country who are bucking federal pandemic advice. The CDC with Dr. Fauci’s support reinstated indoor masking guidelines last July when the Delta variant emerged, advising people to wear masks in indoor public spaces in areas with substantial or high transmission. Now with Omicron, the whole country is a high transmission area. Yet, many states have never required masks or do not currently require masks and some states prevent local governments from requiring them. Would lower level officials respond so casually to the great dictators of history? No. Dr. Fauci is respected by many, but should not be numbered among the most powerful rulers in history.
RFK Jr. points out that Dr. Fauci is “the highest paid of all four million federal employees, including the President.” (Page xvi.) What that observation really speaks to is not how all-powerful Dr. Fauci is, but how low the federal salary scale is. Physicians with research and leadership skills are very marketable in the private sector and the public sector has to pay them well to retain them. The highest paid state employee in Massachusetts is the head of the University of Massachusetts Medical school and he makes more than twice what Dr. Fauci makes. Similarly, all of the top five highest paid state employees in New York are health researchers or executives and they all make more than Dr. Fauci. For a southern example, 11 of the 25 highest paid state employees in Georgia are medical doctors and they all make more than Dr. Fauci. The health care sector employs 22 million people in the United States and includes many centers of power. Dr. Fauci is a visible and important person, but health care leadership is broadly dispersed.
RFK Jr. portrays Dr. Fauci as “cracking down on HCQ [hydrochloroquine] to keep case fatalities high.” (Page 30.) Speaking of federal decisions not to authorize Hydroxychloroquine as a COVID treatment, he says:
Most of my fellow Democrats understand that Dr. Fauci led an effort to deliberately derail America’s access to lifesaving drugs and medicines that might have saved hundreds of thousands of lives and dramatically shortened the pandemic. There is no other aspect of the COVID crisis that more clearly reveals the malicious intentions of a powerful vaccine cartel — led by Dr. Fauci and Bill Gates — to prolong the pandemic and amplify its mortal effects in order to promote their mischievous inoculations.The Real Anthony Fauci, p.19
The framing, “Most of my fellow Democrats understand . . . ,” is plainly false. As recently as December 2021, Dr. Fauci was one of only three leaders with a positive favorability rating among Americans, and he had an 85% favorable rating among Democrats. In 2020, 79% of Democrats and a majority of Republicans felt Dr. Fauci had done a good job handling the pandemic. He was the fourth most admired man among Americans in 2020, behind three presidents.
But then consider the horrific allegation itself — distorting research results so as to kill people so as to make other people want vaccines. As part of his case for the allegation, RFK Jr. zeros in on one of the clear failures of the research vetting process in 2020. An influential study in Lancet showed that hydrochloroquine was not clinically useful in COVID-19 treatment. However, it swiftly emerged that the study and another study on a different issue that appeared in the New England Journal of Medicine were based on likely non-existent data from a bogus “big data” research company called Surgisphere. RFK Jr. reads the incident as proof of the power of the “cartel”:
The capacity of their Pharma overlords to strong-arm the world’s top two medical journals, the NEJM and The Lancet, into condoning deadly research and to simultaneously publish blatantly fraudulent articles in the middle of a pandemic attests to the cartel’s breathtaking power and ruthlessness.The Real Anthony Fauci, p. 30
RFK Jr.’s over-the-top word choice is a red flag in itself. But the fundamental problem with his argument is that in the same time frame, Surgisphere also was able to circulate an influential, but fraudulent article supporting Ivermectin. Ivermectin is the other potential treatment for COVID-19 that RFK Jr. believes has been unfairly discredited by Fauci and the “cartel.” Surgisphere’s fraudulent article contributed heavily towards the expansion of Ivermectin as a COVID-19 treatment in Latin America. If the “cartel” is so powerful and ruthless, why did it allow that?
The simpler truth is that in the midst of a rush for cures, a recklessly ambitious company like Surgisphere was able to deceive a number of smart people. Before long, other smart people uncovered the deception, the articles were retracted and Surgisphere was permanently discredited. The Surgisphere scandal shows both the fallibility of the humans doing science and the ability of the scientific process to ultimately correct itself. It is not evidence of a global vaccine cartel.
There can be no question that in some cases pharmaceutical companies are able to steer both the direction of research and physician clinical choices (see Massachusetts gift ban legislation). But I am completely unable to step into RFK Jr.’s worldview. In his world, a few ruthless titans are pulling the strings for profit. I see a world in which a whole lot of mostly decent people with normal levels of self-interest are trying to do their jobs — to create medications and improve public health. People near the center of health policy decisions, like Dr. Fauci, have to sort out a lot of information and maintain awareness of the quality and motivations of their information sources.
Dr. Fauci is 81 years old. He has been well compensated for decades. It appears that he could retire any time to a federal pension equal to roughly 80% of his salary. It seems unlikely he is in his job for the money. Without putting him on a pedestal of infallibility, I trust him to exercise his judgment for the greater good. I expect his views to continue to evolve in good faith as the research accumulates and new virus behavior emerges.
For my summary responses to themes in these comments, please see this post. Comments were closed on this post on January 31.
You are the villain Will. For not supporting bodily autonomy. I really don’t know how you can look in the mirror at this point in time.
PJ, Will Brownsberger is one of the most honest, community-minded, caring, genuine people I’ve ever met. This has nothing to do with bodily autonomy. It has to do with being part of a society and community and thinking about what you owe a stranger, not what you owe yourself. You don’t have to get vaccinated, just don’t go anywhere where there are other people. Will is selfless, bright, well-educated and has a great world view. Name-calling someone like him reflects poorly on you, not him. He did all the research, read a book that constituents asked him to read, reported back his findings and disagrees with you. That doesn’t merit name-calling. The anger about vaccination at this point is just mind-blowing. It’s a pandemic–time to step up.
Bravo, Patti et al.
I agree completely with Patti.
um, not all of us can get “safely” vxed, including me based on my medical history, and Will is well aware of that. His hubris here is beyond compare. As for some others making comments below, that think unvxed people like me are gonna get sick and die, and take up your hospital resources, but it will be “good”, because, “Darwin”… Yup, ok, keep telling yourself a virus that has always had a 99% survival rate, even with the suppression of early treatment that works, is something you need to inject everyone with novel genetic therapy that doesn’t even fit the longstanding definition of “vaccine” with (i.e. doesn’t stop infection or transmission). And as for the treatment you get once in the hospital? If you think Remdesivir and a Vent is gonna SAVE your life, I think you have a little reading up to do. But I digress. This really isn’t about health, or caring for people, is it? All this back and forth fake virtue singnaling. Because if this was, about health, the health care workers that put themselves in harms way in the Spring of 2020, when we lost almost 750 in Boston in one month (we are still well under 2,000 deaths 2 years later, less than 1,600 actually), all of them, EVERY SINGLE ONE, would still have a JOB. Boston is in distress, and it’s definitely not over a “virus” https://www.masslive.com/coronavirus/2022/01/massachusetts-is-on-the-verge-of-firing-a-partially-covid-vaccinated-state-worker-who-sought-medical-waiver-after-suffering-allergic-reaction-to-first-shot.html?utm_source=facebook&utm_campaign=worcester_sf&utm_medium=social&fbclid=IwAR2CWBeTjY9FUIPX94NkykLJ2EJTISV6JPRtCoTVV8k4qiStZVwgE36A_Vs
There is a reason why ALL vaccine mandates include an exception for people who are medically unable to be vaccinated.
To refute the falsehoods in your diatribe one at a time, 1) no one is rooting for people who can’t be safely vaccinated to die. That is a libelous claim. A primary reason for vaccinating as many people as possible for ANY disease is to PROTECT people who can’t be vaccinated for medical reasons. Please read responsible sources on the history and biology of vaccines and epidemics, not pseudo scientific gibberish from antivaxxers. All of their claims can be and have been refuted by scientific evidence.
2) mRNA vaccines are NOT gene therapy. Gene therapy integrates with a cell’s genome, and for mRNA, would require enzymes to penetrate a cells nucleus, a reverse transcriptase enzyme to produce DNA from the RNA, and other enzymes to splice the resulting DNA into the cell’s original DNA. mRNA vaccines contain NONE of these enzymes.
3) 1% deaths (it is much higher for many populations including elderly people and people with multiple diseases like cancer, diabetes, immune disorders and many others) is 80,000,000 people. Are you saying their lives don’t matter? This is more than ten times as many people as Hitler murdered in the death camps.
4) It’s not just direct Covid deaths, excess deaths for all causes have doubled, due to insufficient medical resources to treat all the people who have other diseases, or are in accidents, or normal routine preventive medical care.
5) For every Covid death, between 5 and 10 people suffer severe long term debilitation (long Covid.) If everyone got Covid (and without vaccinations, there is NOTHING that will ultimately prevent this), there would be 400 to 800 million people suffering from these effects.
6) The vast majority of health care workers got vaccinated and boosted as soon as possible. The refusers eventually got fired, as they should have been. They have no right to call themselves health care providers when they put their own irrational fears above their patients.
Indeed — Bravo, you saved me 10 minutes worth of typing!
Not necessarily true, one friend died of blood clots from getting the COVID shot, his sister was hospitalized with a blood clot after getting the shot.
another hospitalized after getting the booster shot, (couldn’t breath), and couldn’t walk with the first shot, prion diseases seem to be appearing in the US and Canada more frequently,
read the Sars-CoV-2 Vaccines and Neurodengenerative disease. by Stephanie Senell, PhD, (as of May 21, 2021 over 2500 reports of Bell palsy following COVID 19 vaccines. Prion diseases have been increasing, in the USA and Canada. There are many reasons to be wary of the vaccines, which have been rushed to market with grossly inadequate evaluation. Look at Dr. Marrero’s concerns in New Brunswich Canada, Professor Bridle Global News, and Jessica’s Roses article on COVID.
A 3 year old girl died a day after getting the vaccine -had a heart attack. It is not a black and white issue. Some people will benefit and some will be damaged for life.
Patti, Well said. Thank you for saying it.
Tell him Patti
Yes, thank you for this.
Thank you. Well said
I assume you are against the polio vaccine, measles, mumps and rubella too. How about Tetanus shots?
Think about it.
Why would you assume that? Those are real vaccines; the mRNA shots are not. Read up about it.
I did not give you permission to infect me with a dangerous virus just by getting near me. You violating my “bodily autonomy.” Do you see how quickly your thinking falls apart? It’s nonsense.
PJ, the mere fact that Will even considered this book is a refute of your accusations. I have found will to be one of the most open-minded, thoughtful people I know. Sorry, I think you simply don’t understand the science of Public Health.
I haven’t read the book (and Will has admitted to reading only a part of it), but it’s interesting that the book has been the No. 1 or 2 on Amazon’s bestseller list ever since it came out (and it’s now out of stock). It has 6,243 reviews — 92% 5-star, and only 2% 1-star. I guess six thousand people must be entirely wrong, right?
Yes. Nearly all purchases are by those who are predisposed to believe in it.
And all the overblown criticisms of the book are from those who are predisposed to be prejudiced against it.
Well they do say there is a sucker born every minute. The book title does not let on to the fact that it’s arguments do not hold up to reason or logic as has been pointed out so well by Will in his review. Where or in what way is Will’s review in error?
Some of the top-rated Amazon reviews of this book are very much worth reading (that’s why I provided the link). They are much more informative than most of the comments here which are primarily about emotions and kissing up to Will. Group-think central.
Yes, wrong, just like the millions who thought DTs deserved another term in office.
Bravo Mr. Brownsberger. You considered the “argument” and came to the logical conclusion. Unfortunately we are witnessing the end of the Age of Enlightenment.
Will – I think pJ is right time to get a super Villain suit – maybe look to the characters from the Batman series we grew up with – maybe go with the evil cyclists
The same people who cry out for “bodily autonomy “ (to have the right to sicken others because they refuse to wear a mask and get vaccinated) also have supported rigging the Supreme Court to take away Women’s Constructional rights. This is a matter of public policy that keeps our society running and people healthy. It’s not a conspiracy… Even Donald Trump came out to urge people to get the vaccine. Until everyone is vaccinated, this virus will mutate and we will be at the mercy of people who think their rights are more important than any one else… Get vaccinated. You have to vaccinate your kids before they can go to school, and you vaccinate your babies so they don’t die a premature death from other horrible diseases. People who think this a conspiracy are watching too much Fox News, and allowing their feelings to take over facts-
This is an example of pro-vaccine misinformation. You wrote: “Until everyone is vaccinated, this virus will mutate and we will be at the mercy of people who think their rights are more important than any one else… Get vaccinated.” PLEASE UNDERSTAND that mRNA vaccines do absolutely nothing for eliminating this virus. The virus mutates with and without those “vaccines”. If anything, telling people that those shots are a cure all is giving people a false sense of security. The virus will stop being prevalent on its own, through mechanisms that we don’t understand. The Spanish Flu epidemic ended without any vaccines being forced on people. And if the shots that are now mandated worked, we would not be in the situation we’re in right now.
CDC Director: Covid vaccines can’t prevent transmission anymore
I support your right to bodily autonomy if you agree to go live on an island and give up contact with other people. The point of vaccination is not your bodily autonomy, but your assistance in reducing the likelihood you and everyone around you do not get or give this, and for many of us, very serious illness to other people. It is your responsibility to other people. One thing left out of our Constitution are the responsibilities of citizens. Rights we got in the constitution and hear about it all the time from certain corners of society. But then I think the founders assumed fellow citizens would be mostly responsible to other citizens.
Daniel and all others who believe that PJ and others have a responsibility to get vaccinated – you’re in the grips of some major cognitive dissonance. You act as if those mRNA vaccines are effective stoppers of the virus. They are not. You’re just ganging up on PJ and whoever may have a reason not to be vaccinated, just so you, the “good and responsible” citizens can feel virtuous. This self-righteousness is ridiculous given the fact that covid mutates and spreads among the “vaccinated” as well. This virus can evade the meager and temporary protections that you get from the mRNA vaccines, and you don’t know what repetitive administration of those shots will do to people’s immune systems. You don’t know what you don’t know, but you act like you know everything. PJ is within her rights to opposed mRNA vaccine mandates. She stated she was seriously vaccine-injured. Why do you have no compassion for people like that? Since when is our society into sacrificing individuals for the collective? Maybe you should all move to China.
Why do you tell people who are in disagreement with your thinking to move to China? Why China?
Why not Hungary? Or Turkey? Or Belarus?
I suspect your racism is showing through your anger. Such a comment is certainly not an expression of rational debate.
Nice but nonsensical try bringing race into this. China is a totalitarian country. If that is a racist statement in your opinion, you don’t think straight, and your opinion carries no weight.
Daniel — I so agree with your note regarding responsibilities. While likely a non-starter initiative, it would be oh-so-incredibly great if we were able to define and add as Constitutional Amendment some list of “Bill of Responsibilities” — after all these years, we should have a good idea of what such would be.
I am such a fan of creating this Bill of Responsibilities!
Thank you so much, Will Brownsberger, for your balanced, fact-checked examination of sources. I have been astounded at RFK Jr.’s grand conspiracy theories re vaccines, which sadly influence like-minded people who feel power in their “special knowledge” by attacking peer-reviewed medical studies and mainstream well-credentialed leaders. As Will points out, that doesn’t mean that various companies and individuals in the field will always be honorable and honest. Money talks. But I agree with him that most people are reasonable, decent, if sometimes fallible.
Are you calling someone a villain who reviews scientific data and shares it with you to protect your health? Perhaps it’s you than should find a mirror….and wipe the white dust off it and come back to reality.
Thank you for your carefully considered thoughts.
Well said, Will. Rfk not rational
Will, thank you for this. I support you in your effort to work for those of us concerned with the community, as well as with the individual.
I commend you for getting through even part of this book.
Will, I don’t think that history will treat Fauci, Big Pharma, and Big Government’s attempted control over our lives and bodies as kindly as you. I highly recommend you and others watch the following video. It’s balanced, non-partisan, non-ideological, and intellectually honest. (Easy to listen, but closed captioning may be helpful.)
Paul Kingsnorth: Why I changed sides in the vaccine wars – YouTube
“In his world, a few ruthless titans are pulling the strings for profit.” Consider this statement. In our times, and for the last hundred years, the “ruthless titans” are usually named. Without watching the video myself, please tell me who this Paul Kingsworth names as a ruthless titan.
Thank you for sharing this content, Eva. Twas interesting, to a point…
First problem is, Mr Kingsnorth jumps immediately from the idea that [doing something that is in the best interests of collective societal health can be a common good] to the idea that [those that subscribe to the collective societal health are somehow authoritarians bent on excluding The Others from the societal activities]. There need be no further ingestion of Mr Kingsnorth’s rationale, for on this first, he dove right off the plank.
Mr Kingsnorth lives in that fantasy world where there are no consequences of one’s personal decisions on the greater societal community. And therefore, Mr Kingsnorth’s view subscribes to a world that ceased to exist conclusively with the Industrial Revolution (if not earlier!) — where individuals become dependent upon the greater society for many of their sustaining products, rather than being able to be fully self-sufficient alone.
Worse, Mr Kingsnorth ascribes political characteristics to each side! So, he is actually quite partisan, quite ideologically-seated, and absolutely intellectually dishonest — so sorry.
In this manner, Mr Kingsnorth subscribes to the same delusion of much of the militia-society folk of the USA and many who have bought the FNC, OAN, Newsmax propaganda — that “government” is bad, that collective pressure to act is bad, that the needs of society are secondary to MY needs, MY thoughts, MY MY MY MY MY etc.
We do live in a dependent, collective society, where most (if not all) are somehow dependent upon others for those products+services that the individual does not provide for themself.
Further, at least in the USA, the population can reverse course and choose to elect politicians (those people that comprise the “govern” part of “government”) that reflect the switch in course the public would like — for example, PotUS Trump in 2016, and PotUS Biden in 2020 — each a choice that embodied the society changing its direction.
I have only one suggestion for all of these folks, and all that follow their leadership: please, PLEASE, leave. Please take their world-revolving-around-themselves mentality to some isolated place, where they can not infect, infest, abuse, or otherwise harm the rest of society that imperfectly struggles how to balance the needs of the many with the needs of each one.
We will all see, soon enough, that collective concern and action would have been better.
But, unfortunately, that time is now past.
I lament the inability to find any kind of common thread of thought upon which we might base a discussion, towards climbing out of this chasm.
Well said Jim but I would have to add that we can not stop talking to one another because we disagree. It is this pushing away and demonizing each other that is making the bad even worse. We have to start punishing those that use the drug of hate to gain power over others. The pedaling of hate is what too many republicans use to attract there base who don’t even know they are being manipulated. We, well congress really, needs to put a stop the pedaling of hate rhetoric by the media and by politicians with more immediate and severe consequences. I believe Will is fighting the good fight as we all must do with those around us who have been led astray by leaders who are just taking advantage of their gullibility.
Hi, David — thank you. I absolutely agree in keeping open discussion channels, but careful to offer that there need be agreement to be genuine, to actually listen and talk.
I know my post was over-the-top re “leaving”, but if no discussion possible, perhaps the hyperbole gets attention. Perhaps not best approach, I agree.
I hear you and thank you for your words Jim. It’s shocking that the folks that declare they are “the party of life” so willfully put other’s life in danger so that they don’t have to be bothered with masks and lifesaving vaccines. I have Trump=lie-buying family members in this boat who have assured me that they have horse suppositories if they get covid so apparently they’d rather shove something in their rectum than protect the health of the innocent people in their surroundings with the same prick they got vaccinated with as children. Why Trump who pushed this vaccine on the market and took it himself is being so secretive to those who love him like the second coming is beyond me. Incredible that a self-proclaimed pussy grabber who pays porn stars for sex has become their new Christ almighty.
So wish there was a vaccine or effective treatment for TDS.
sorry… why should vaccinations be optional?
Do we control stuff like people defecating in public water? (Yes we do)
Do we control stuff like making sure people drive safely? (Yes we do)
Do we ask you to fight for your country? (Yes we do)
Do we control public health? YES WE DO!
Rejecting science is not only a decision to endanger your own life… it’s a decision to endanger mine! (and everyone else’s)
If you get sick:
1. You can get me sick
2. You suck up potential resources that I might need
3. You are simply being inconsiderate
Seriously, I’m a libertarian, but public health is not a personal decision. That’s why it’s called “PUBLIC” health.
In fact, it’s time for you and everyone else to take some PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY to keep yourself healthy, and maybe save some other lives in the process. Get Vaccinated!
Paul Kingsnorth makes no sense and seems to actually believe he’s living in 1984. Also, he should put his bird in another room when he’s on camera (at least I’m hoping that’s what it was). His anti-science, anti-logic stance makes absolutely no sense! Of course, he doesn’t understand the science, he’s not even willing to try! Kingsnorth would like us to go back to the middle ages…..
Well… that’s 34 minutes and 36 seconds I’ll never get back…
Here’s 16 seconds in response:
Your whole long posting misses the point – entirely. We don’t have the responsibility to take mRNA vaccines because they are not real vaccines; they give you only temporary artificial immunity, and are not sterilizing to this virus. So they have no ability to eliminate Covid (especially since the virus is smart enough to mutate, very likely in response to those shots).
Long-term impact of those “vaccines” on our immune system is not known. Covid-“vaccinated” people still contract and spread the virus. At the same time, the injections have the potential to seriously injure some people (and they have – only the dishonest media that you consume don’t tell you about it).
We have no right to sacrifice individuals on the altar of ineffective jabs that may be actually only prolonging this pandemic. We need to focus on early and effective treatment instead. That’s where Fauci at al dropped the ball.
OK, so you dont’ understand the meaning of “vaccination” (they are never 100% effective), you the also do not understand “herd immunity” and the role vaccines play in curtailing them and you clearly don’t understand how pandemics work. BTW, the places where the virus mutated (Brazil, the UK, South Africa) where all the places WITHOUT vaccines.
Re “vaccines” doing harm:
In the US:
COVID Deaths: 836,000
VACCINES given: 206,000,000
VACCINE Side Effect Deaths: 3 (Blood Clots, J&J)
Soooo… 3 deaths out of 206M…
This is clearly a safe proposition by the numbers, but you gotta know the numbers. Not just vaguely refer to them the way you do.
No problem. When you’ve done your homework, come back and we can discuss. Until then, conversation over.
Meanwhile, you should definitely look up the Kruger Dunning effect:
Your side has shamelessly politicized those “vaccines” to the point that nothing that is available in mainstream sources on the topic of vaccine-related injuries and deaths is verifiable and credible. You want to believe there is nothing to worry about with respect to those shots when (even when they’re administered repeatedly) – and it is your right to believe that. I beg to differ. And so we must part ways. Feel free to be a pin cushion for Big Pharma all you want. Many others will say, “my body belongs to me” – and you cannot do anything about it. Bye-bye.
Please, before you rant about “your side” shamelessly politicising the vaccines…..
Remember, please, it was The Trumpus who began the politicisation, at the catastrophically toxic level. It has been impossible for any public discourse of any rational level since Trumpus bloviated.
He does one thing well: all Trumpus touches dies.
Please, not me or you!
Oh my gosh – this is not about Trump. When will you guys finally rid yourselves of your Trump obsession? A dog is barking – must be Trump’s fault. It was absolutely democrats who politicized the covid pandemic – it was exploited in order to increase chances that he would lose the election. Do you not remember when Kamala Harris said that she would never take any vaccine that was brought to market under Trump?
The link gives a small glimpse of the damage being done.
One more thing: Will, I hope you realize that when you say that you “trust” Fauci (and by extension, the powerful and completely unaccountable establishment he represents) on pretty much everything is simply not a valid argument – not one iota more valid than somebody else saying the opposite.
You’re a smart guy and all, but no intelligent free-thinking adults should be blindly trusting you or anybody else on such complex issues. It’s kind of lazy – or maybe just a misplaced desire that some people have to submit themselves to a higher power – even it’s just you. But no person has monopoly on being always right. The way this pandemic has been managed by Fauci et al has been full of highly questionable decisions – and the bad consequences of those decisions will be with us for decades. Not to mention the murky issue of the gain-of -function research — a big Pandora Box that may one day fly open. I just don’t understand how can you and other Fauci admirers completely suspend your critical thinking?
I’d love to see a day when for once you could bring yourself to express an unpopular opinion, and surprise your faithful groupies into an uncomfortable silence. Sycophantic praises are not valid arguments either. Just so boring.
There is truth in your comment about “a misplaced desire that some people have to submit themselves to a higher power.” The flip side of that desire is the opposite desire to simplify the world by declaring some people Evil (as RFKJr. labels Fauci). My purpose in this post is to pull people back towards the greyer middle — our leaders are mostly trying to do the right thing but are not perfect and the answer is never final. As I said: “Without putting him on a pedestal of infallibility, I trust him to exercise his judgment for the greater good. I expect his views to continue to evolve in good faith as the research accumulates and new virus behavior emerges.”
Eva you seem to have everything figured out here. Since you are the armchair chief medical advisor of the nation, why don’t you insult your way to the top and solve everything right now? 😉 But seriously, when did you become so snide? (please don’t answer – this is just a sad question I ask myself out loud.)
‘Kissing up/groupies’? Totally insulting and I’m embarrassed for you.
Will, I would like to thank you for your thoughtful and patient posts. Please know that I have more positive things to say but I’ll refrain at the moment because I’d hate for Eva to spew her venom at me today. A sincere thanks for all that you do.
To spew venom at you would be a total waste of time. Your post is saying nothing of consequence.
Eva, you are awesome. keep speaking the truth.
Eva, you’ve got serious head problems. What happened to you? Was your response to me not spewing your same venom? I guess I was worthy of it after all. I’m saddened by your demise. Your former integrity has been obliterated. Spew away, you are an embarrassment. Take your own insulting advice and go back to your homeland. Right? Doesn’t that sound like something YOU would spew at someone? Again, don’t bother “responding”. It’s so sad to watch an adult act like a weird angry child. All of your insult-slinging is a waste of time. You don’t see that. You’re stuck in your libertarian-style bull. Insult after insult yet you say that everyone else (except for your groupies) is inconsequential. Weird. I know you won’t be able to resist responding to this. Rest assured, it won’t be seen by me. Goodbye Eva, foreva.
Thank you for sharing this, Eva. I deeply respect Paul Kingsnorth. And, Will, I deeply appreciate your willingness to read RFK, Jr’s book and provide this opportunity for conversation. We can argue about whether RFK, Jr.’s arguments are valid or not, but, echoing Paul Kingsnorth, it’s about the larger question of where these decisions from those in positions of authority are leading us. I also recommend this article which lays out many of my concerns: https://www.kosmosjournal.org/kj_article/marching-orders/
I’ll take a look at that.
Consider this- women who were pregnant were excluded from the vaccine trials. Why? Because it would be unethical to include them. Now these same women are getting vaccinated to keep there jobs. Also, I agree with Eva (who on the last thread of conversations was largely ignored) that this is not a vaccination. When you have to take repeated shots within several months, I think you are being medicated..repeatedly. Also, Brazil had quite a crisis..then that was resolved so quickly. Interesting that Ivermectin is sold over the counter there. Are we looking at what other countries are doing or will we staunchly adhere to our own little bubble?
Elaine…these are all questions which are not allowed. We must “Trust the Science”. Please get onboard…it’s for the “Greater Good” that you do what you are told by the experts.
so… let’s start with your first point and acknowledge that this is a conundrum. If we ethically cannot test on pregnant women, how can any therapy ever be approved for them? This is true of all therapies, not just vaccines.
Given the small percentage of the population , there’s clearly a need for testing and masking as an alternative (although I will point out there have been at least 200K pregnant women who have taken the vaccine with no ill effects).
Re Eva being ignored – I think if you look at the metrics, she’s nowhere near being “ignored”. People have taken time and effort to address every one of her concerns.
Re Vaccine as a therapeutic — why do you care? I get my flu shot each year and expect I will for the rest of my life. I got 3 shingles shots, and I expect that I’ll be getting more COVID shots. If there was a Cancer shot I could get every year, I’d line up for it. About being medicated multiple times — There are loads of people on daily vitamins, herbs and drugs to help them live a better, safer life. What’s your point?
Re Brazil — Perhaps you’re forgetting that Brazil is below the equator? That means the seasons are reversed. Also, the Brazilian government is not terribly good at keeping statistics…. AND… now that they have Omicron, new cases have just clicked up to Jul levels again in Brazil. AND because they had a very bad winter, there are fewer viral targets. I’m sure they are all blissfully dewormed as well, but I suspect this has nothing to do with any of the COVID numbers….
Re “are we looking to other countries”, the answer is Yes! That’s why we monitor the Israeli experience. And South Africa. And the UK…..DO you not read the news?
Richard, you wrote: “About being medicated multiple times — There are loads of people on daily vitamins, herbs and drugs to help them live a better, safer life. What’s your point?” Yes, you had to ask that question, because you have no idea. The point IS that people are taking/doing all kinds of things to their bodies – but it is THEIR choice. You of course want to preserve that choice for yourself, but you see others as lesser human beings who have no right to decide for themselves. That kind of thinking is at the root of fascism. I would not be so proud of it if I were you.
Really appreciate this thoughtful and informative response. Thank you.
Thank you for taking the time to go through all these points. I agree 100%.
Thank you, Will, for taking the time to read that book and debunk it for us. It’s really sad that so many people are misled by such stuff and refuse to do the minimum to protect themselves and their neighbors.
Thanks for the book review. RFK, Jr. is getting known for wild, unsupported accusations. If he wants to find someone motivated by greed and pushing conspiracies, he need only look in the mirror.
“…it [the book] is getting known for wild, unsupported accusations”, you wrote. Unless you read the book, and decided that all the footnotes and verifiable references that are included in the book are all fake, you’re only repeating gossip. Choosing sides before reading the book is like deciding that a theater performance was bad without ever seeing it. Like most people here, you’re just trying to say nice things to Will. But that’s not a meaningful discussion.
Will: thank you for your willingness to be clear-minded, and not swayed by the ill-informed views of those who have succumbed to conspiracy theories. Not sure how we can persuade those who have succumbed to ignorance, but alas, the pandemic doesn’t care about ideology. Science works. Those who choose not to believe in reality are still subject to it. Whether they like it or not.
Dismissing everything as “conspiracy theories” is in itself a crude conspiracy theory – a catch-all for all real or imagined conspiracy theories. Is it a conspiracy theory to point out that Fauci was telling the nation that mRNA vaccines are going to rid us of covid, and they have not and they won’t? Is it a conspiracy theory to point out that he is recommending those “vaccines” for pregnant women when those shots were never tested on pregnant women? Is it a conspiracy theory to point out that those shots have no long-term record, when they don’t? Is it a conspiracy theory to point out that Fauci and his collaborators were funding viral gain-of-function research on corona viruses in Wuhan – when that is actually what happened? I could go on…
Thank you for your reading of this book and for sharing your thoughts.
I do share your perspective (regarding Mr Kennedy’s view and elaboration). I do also think that while not perfect at all, nor all-knowing, Dr Fauci professes neither and does have greater good as his objective.
It is true that in our money-corrupted system there will be a constant battle between those peddling their products (with the influence of their $$$) and those who do try to look out for the public. The guardians will not always win, but with time the peddlers are generally revealed for what they truly are (either promoting genuine resolution or stealing our $$$).
Thank you for your continued efforts to shine light into corners of darkness.
Per Will…he did not exactly read the book. Read chapter and skimmed the rest. Just enough to pull out a couple of sentences, mis-characterize, and set up a straw man argument of why it’s not worth reading for others. Basically, a consensus building exercise for his followers.
I highly recommend others actual read the book. Verify the endnotes/footnotes,. The focus of the book is not Fauci’s salary….come on man!
Your research and analysis make a lot of sense to me, Will. I wasn’t aware of RFK’s book but I’m glad to have read about it and hear about other anti-vax opinions just to get a handle on why some people are resisting. Thanks.
I find folks who come up ingenious schemes of disinformation particularly repulsive. I feel sad for the folks who buy into their schemes. The high covid death rate among the unvaccinated is a sad example of Darwinism at work.
It’s time to stop entertaining medical naysayers. It takes over a decade of education to become a doctor, and takes absolutely no education whatsoever to make baseless arguments against modern medicine and science.
Thanks Will. I wish you did not have to go through libels. We need you rested for building legislation that truly affect us 🙂
RFK Jr’s” framing, “Most of my fellow Democrats understand . . . ,” is plainly false,” as you say. The same rhetorical trick was used by Trump when he said that even his opponents know that he “won by a lot”. Thanks, Will.
Thank you, Will, for your always measured and thoughtful approach, in this situation and in many others. Your constituents can always be assured that your responses are both well-researched and well-communicated.
Thank you Senator for having the stomach to get through his writings. Having heard an interview with RFK, Jr. and seen some of his writings pre-pandemic, I long ago made the assessment that he was not of sound mind. Thank you for your service to our community.
I would only plead to my neighbors that this is not hard: get vaccinated and wear a proper mask properly. Do it for your neighbors and to prevent even more virulent variants.
While some apparent nut jobs have responded with delusional nonsense, I see that the vast majority agree with me that you are a voice of well balanced investigation followed by the truth. Please, for all our sakes, keep it up. I am begging you.
What are you begging for? He’s not threatening to quit.
Well done, Will. Thanks.
Hear, hear, Tesi.
“Science doesn’t care what you believe”
Even RFK’s family believes he is wrong.
I don’t agree with RFK Jr. on a lots of things, but this is a well documented book that carefully documents the crimes of Anthony Fauci et al. I encourage all to read and make up their own minds. I learned a lot regarding the despicable policy decisions and experiments Fauci and team did during the AIDS crisis for one. Many more crimes added with Covid. Eerily similar to what is going on now. These people could care less about saving lives…pure evil.
“In his world, a few ruthless titans are pulling the strings for profit.” Consider this statement. In our times, and for the last hundred years, the “ruthless titans” are usually named.
In RFK Jr.’s view, apart from Dr. Fauci and Bill Gates, whom does he name?
Are you naively saying that the world has never seen individuals who could be characterized as “ruthless titans”? How do you think obscenely huge fortunes are made?
Did you know that birds aren’t real too?
Thank you for taking the time to do this. Your analysis and conclusions seem highly rational. This is exactly the kind of cool-headed and direct response we need more of, to the steady stream of questionable (and sometimes outright mis)information one encounters these days.
Thank you Will for your thoughtful and concise review of this over the top exploitation of an already heartbreaking pandemic, and by making it quite clear by breaking down the points in understandable language. I so much appreciate your global caring and heartfelt integrity.
Thank you, Will.
I asked a couple of respondents who disagreed with your conclusion about the book the following:
“In his world, a few ruthless titans are pulling the strings for profit.” Consider this statement. In our times, and for the last hundred years, the “ruthless titans” are usually named.
I asked them to tell me who was named apart from Dr. Fauci, Bill Gates (a common ruthless titan nowadays) and this entity called Big Pharma.
I do not intend to clog your response list with invective (and will certainly not do on my part).
I am old enough to be familiar with where responses to such an inquiry usually lead. I want to test whether my unmentioned assumption of their answers was true or not, or somewhere in between.
Thanks for your thoughtful analysis of RFK’s book. It sounds like bunk. You gave it more of the benefit of the doubt than it deserves. But you thoroughly demolished it all the same.
Thank you Mr. Brownsberger for the thoughtful case of reading an alternate view and rationally assessing it. Seemingly, a portion of our population has been sucked into a hysteria which is not build on a rational basis, but is an emotional striking out at “authority.” Hence, unfortunately, rational discussion with such fellow citizens is unlikely to be heard by them.
Thank you for such a thoughtful response when so many others merely fan the fire or reject anything that counters their position. Science is never perfect and by its nature always evolving.
Thank you for your service.
Will, Thank you for taking the time to read the book and to explain why its basic premises are false. This kind of misinformation/disinformation about Covid has killed untold numbers.
Thanks for this run-down on RFK Jr’s book. He has long been known as a whacko. That some of the people on your list cite his book as a reliable source shows us once again how gullible some people are and how ready they are to grab onto any source to support their own prejudices.
I have never had a high opinion of commenters who go after the person (in this case RFK Jr.) instead of arguing on issues at hand. It was on full display with Trump too. It’s a smoke screen that in no way brings us closer to solving our problems.
Thank you for taking the time to read such drivel, saving your constituents valuable time. I appreciate the seriousness with which you always take your work.
I have absolutely no patience left for anti-vax thinking. Those who die vaccine-free at this point, deserve it.
This is what happens when a Kennedy goes bad. Because of the name they were born with, they can publish without principle. I know: I haven’t read it. No, I don’t intend to.
“Those who die vaccine-free at this point, deserve it,” is a terribly evil thing to say, Janet. Is that really who you are? A psychopath? You have no idea why certain individuals are refusing the vaccine. Do you think the same way about people who die from obesity-related illnesses, lung cancer after smoking for years, driving while they’re intoxicated or texting, uncontrolled type 2 diabetes, etc.? If not, why not? People in these categories all had the opportunity to improve/save their health/lives if they had made different decisions as well, yet most of the time people, who make evil comments such as yours have more sympathy for them than those they label “anti-vax.” Is that really logically consistent though?
As a side note, I don’t believe anyone deserves death no matter how vehemently I disagree with their health decisions.
Celia – thank you so much! Somebody had to say it, and you did so beautifully.
Will thanks. It was very generous of you to give this awful book as much time as you did.
Thanks as always, Will, for your careful reading and straightforward reasoning.
Thank you, Will for even reading JFK Jr‘s “book” of falsehoods and lies and pointing them out so clearly.
Continue your good work for us.
JFK Jr’s book isn’t coming out until after he appears at his Qanon event.
I’m sure you consider yourselves open-minded people.
Thank you for this analysis. I second every appreciation stated above.
Your critique of RFK He’s book & concepts are logical & well modulated. I appreciate that. One issue is the lack of messaging & perception. To convince the skeptical public, it behooves Dr Fauci to step back & certainly step away from the media spotlight.
It would be a better visual with a team of scientists & doctors to diffuse the him vs everyone dynamic. He’s not the only qualified person-& I hope Fauci takes a step back for the overall benefit of a tired nation.
Biden needs to have a more consistent policy nationwide. We, the people, are tired of governors, mayors Fauci telling us different things on any given day.
No we are not. Fauci isn’t perfect but has done a great job. At least half of the governors have done a terrible job. Boston’s mayors have had a mixed performance. Marty was adequate. Janey was awful. Wu is good but too little too late regarding omicron.
I agree. Fauci has allowed himself to become a TV personality – hardly a good look for someone in his position. I’m tired of seeing him, and don’t pay much attention to what he is saying — since I learned he may be twisting himself into a pretzel saying something different in not too long.
Thanks so much for this analysis, Will!
It is particularly needed given the reckless, dangerous incitement of hostility being directed by ne’er-do-wells and the simply misguided towards that fine fellow Fauci.
Thank you, Will, for separating fact from fiction.
Opinion never does that. Most of what Will wrote is opinion.
The silver lining behind this cloud of misinformation is that the people dying of covid are almost entirely unvaccinated, which will get us to herd immunity sooner. Again, it is my opinion that unvaccinated people showing up at the hospital with Covid should be sent home. It is the most sensible form of triage
Hateful and shameful of you. You should embarrassed.
And you have no idea what you’re talking about, Alan. Even triple-vaccinated people are getting covid and many are walking around spreading it, while most unvaccinated are very careful, responsibly self-isolating, and masking and distancing when in public. It is mind-boggling that people like you exist. Maybe you’re also fantasizing about executing the unvaccinated. Looks like you would surely volunteer for that task. Revolting.
And herd immunity is not achieved by temporary artificial immunity of mRNA shots. You will learn the hard way.
I have seen this hateful rhetoric from several of the postings…wishing for someone’s death is something Will should publicly condemn. I even saw a retired nurse in these postings cheering on the death of unvaxxed. Will, this is exactly why you do not divide societies along lines such as this. You need to take responsibility for the hateful society you and other misguided politicians are creating.
Mark — you are not seriously accusing Will of fanning flames by sharing his thoughtful and respectful analysis, as invited to do by his constituents? How exactly is that “misguided”?
No Robin. My response was to Alan who said the unvaxxed should be sent home to die. I do think Will should clearly state his objection to such hateful comments.
!! Go Will Go ***
I wonder why RFK with his misguided opinion gained traction in American society. But, then, Trump in all of his hateful incompetency still gets media coverage. What this shows, in my opinion, is too many people lack an ability to think critically.
A famous name and lots of money.
They think the same of you. The jury is still out.
Thanks for taking the time to comment on the book and for allowing this open exchange
Will, I appreciate your sharing your insight about the book you read. Me, learning more why people are anti- vaxers. I appreciate the work you do for your constituents & always going the extra step to help & support us. Thank you-
I too thank you for taking the time to read RFK Jr’s book; I’m one of many who wouldn’t have the patience.
I know Tony Fauci, because Sheldon Wolff was his mentor and mine. If Dr. Fauci had wanted money and power, he would not have spent his career at the NIH. He is a serious and sincere person, and we have every reason to think that he is doing his best for the public health. (The same is true of Rachelle Walensky.)
There is an interesting freely available and non-technical essay about COVID and HIV denialism in this week’s New England Journal of Medicine, https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMp2115832 . The author says that “The truth is that I believe HIV causes AIDS because I trust the people – professors, editors, scientists – who have told me so, not because I can independently evaluate and confirm the science. I am part of what anthropologist Heidi Larson calls a ‘chain of trust’ in a social system that has treated me fairly and generously – a chain did not reach Mr. B. I realized that the chain’s links consist of lived experiences and relationships, not data in scientific journals. I believe what my colleagues say because of of my proximity to their experience: I work with people like the scientists who conducted the earliest studies, and I know them to be generally honorable and credible. “
That is why I believe Tony Fauci and Rachelle Walensky.
Well said. The challenge is to extend that chain of trust. It is not blind trust. It is informed trust.
So proud to have voted for you! Thank you for thinking about ALL of us. I agree with your reflections.
That’s it…how to we build a chain of trust in this country again? So very easy to break it.
Thank you. While RFK jr. book is not on my list, I’m glad it was on yours. I am heartened by your thoughtful research and analysis of it, and for all your efforts in our community. Again, thank you. I feel so grateful to have such a genuine and respectful person as our senator, especially in these times.
Thank you for spending the time on this. You’re an incredibly patient and probing person. I hope your analysis will be helpful for some in the district.
Thank you, Will — and shame on RFK and all the other anti-vax conspiracy theorists. This whole thing is scary, as are a number of other widespread public delusions that I need not mention.
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