According to the world’s most prestigious scientific journal, here’s how the history of mRNA vaccines begins:
In late 1987, Robert Malone performed a landmark experiment. He mixed strands of messenger RNA with droplets of fat, to create a kind of molecular stew. Human cells bathed in this genetic gumbo absorbed the mRNA, and began producing proteins from it.
Realizing that this discovery might have far-reaching potential in medicine, Malone, a graduate student at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla, California, later jotted down some notes, which he signed and dated. If cells could create proteins from mRNA delivered into them, he wrote on 11 January 1988, it might be possible to “treat RNA as a drug”. Another member of the Salk lab signed the notes, too, for posterity. Later that year, Malone’s experiments showed that frog embryos absorbed such mRNA. It was the first time anyone had used fatty droplets to ease mRNA’s passage into a living organism.
Those experiments were a stepping stone towards two of the most important and profitable vaccines in history: the mRNA-based COVID-19 vaccines given to hundreds of millions of people around the world. Global sales of these are expected to top US$50 billion in 2021 alone.
The above Nature article is dated September 14, 2021. In late December 2021/early January 2022, the above-referenced Robert Malone was censored by YouTube (UK Independent) and unpersoned by Twitter (Daily Mail). A mixture from the two sources:
Given the doctor’s contested views on Covid-19, including his opposition to vaccine mandates for minors, the act by YouTube has sparked several accusations of censorship amongst right-wing politicians and political commentators.
Malone even questioned the effectiveness of Pfizer’s Covid-19 vaccine in a tweet posted the day before his account was suspended on December 30
He told Rogan that government-imposed vaccine mandates are destroying the medical field ‘for financial incentives (and) political a**-covering’
Malone responded by questioning: ‘If it’s not okay for me to be a part of the conversation even though I’m pointing out scientific facts that may be inconvenient, then who is?’
(What did Malone do for work between 1987 and now? According to Wikipedia, he graduated medical school in 1991, was a postdoc at Harvard Medical School (yay!), and then worked in biotech, including on vaccine projects. “Until 2020, Malone was chief medical officer at Alchem Laboratories, a Florida pharmaceutical company,” suggests that he might live here in the Florida Free State.)
How long would we have to wait for a corrected history of mRNA vaccines from which the unpersoned Malone would be absent? January 15, 2022, “Halting Progress and Happy Accidents: How mRNA Vaccines Were Made” (New York Times), a 30-screen story on my desktop PC. The Times history starts in medias res, but if we scroll down to the point in time where Nature credits Malone, both Malone and Salk are missing:
The vaccines were possible only because of efforts in three areas. The first began more than 60 years ago with the discovery of mRNA, the genetic molecule that helps cells make proteins. A few decades later, two scientists in Pennsylvania decided to pursue what seemed like a pipe dream: using the molecule to command cells to make tiny pieces of viruses that would strengthen the immune system.
The second effort took place in the private sector, as biotechnology companies in Canada in the budding field of gene therapy — the modification or repair of genes to treat diseases — searched for a way to protect fragile genetic molecules so they could be safely delivered to human cells.
The third crucial line of inquiry began in the 1990s, when the U.S. government embarked on a multibillion-dollar quest to find a vaccine to prevent AIDS. That effort funded a group of scientists who tried to target the all-important “spikes” on H.I.V. viruses that allow them to invade cells. The work has not resulted in a successful H.I.V. vaccine. But some of these researchers, including Dr. Graham, veered from the mission and eventually unlocked secrets that allowed the spikes on coronaviruses to be mapped instead.
Perhaps the Times just didn’t have enough space in 30 screens of text to identify Malone? The journalists and editors found space to write about someone who wasn’t involved in any way:
“It was all in place — I saw it with my own eyes,” said Dr. Elizabeth Halloran, an infectious disease biostatistician at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle who has done vaccine research for over 30 years but was not part of the effort to develop mRNA vaccines. “It was kind of miraculous.”
There was plenty of space for a photo of an innumerate 79-year-old trying to catch up on six decades of biology. The caption:
From left: Dr. Graham, President Biden, Dr. Francis Collins and Kizzmekia Corbett. The scientists were explaining the role of spike proteins to Mr. Biden during a visit to the Viral Pathogenesis Laboratory at the N.I.H. last year.
For folks in Maskachusetts who’ve had three shots and are in bed hosting an Omicron festival, the article closes with an inspiring statistic:
He was in his home office on the afternoon of Nov. 8 when he got a call about the results of the study: 95 percent efficacy, far better than anyone had dared to hope.
See also the NYT for Massachusetts hospitalization stats in a population that is 95 percent vaccinated with a 95 percent effective vaccine:
So… it was two weeks from Robert Malone being unpersoned by the Silicon Valley arbiters of what constitutes dangerous misinformation to an authoritative history in which Malone is not mentioned.
107 thoughts on “A corrected history of mRNA vaccines”
About 2,400 Americans are dying every day from covid, making it the #1 cause of death, above heart disease and cancer.
About 75% of them are unvaccinated, per the latest CDC data:
Maybe there a good reason not to boost Dr. Malone’s profile and contribute to a propaganda movement that is killing more people than cancer?
(btw, Massachusetts reports 5.2 million vaccinated in a population of 6.9 million, which seems closer to 75% than 95%:
Al: The 95% number is from the referenced New York Times page. I hope that you’re not arguing with Science (as embodied in the NYT) since, if you were, you’d have to be silenced as a potential source of misinformation.
I think I’ll do a separate blog post on this, but if there is a huge potential to save lives via censorship of minority opinions, e.g., that cloth masks aren’t effective and that the vaccinated can be infected by SARS-CoV-2 (see https://www.cnn.com/2021/08/10/tech/twitter-marjorie-taylor-greene/index.html ), what else should we censor? How about anything that Big Health Care would label “alternative medicine”? Surely we don’t want people being swayed by misinformation and seeking homeopathy rather than a visit to the Emergency Department. Advocating for Christian Science should be impossible on Facebook, Twitter, Google, et al.
Here’s a heretic against government and pediatric advice that children must be placed in the rear seat of a car for safety: https://www.caranddriver.com/features/a15148604/smart-airbags-attack-a-vanishing-problem-feature/ . That’s “misinformation” according to Science (government advice). Why should anyone be able to promote it on Facebook or Twitter? Similarly, https://www.nytimes.com/2019/06/12/business/seatbelts-back-seat-safety.html goes against official advice (front seat these days is safer due to better seatbelts than those in the back seat). We would need to suppress https://www.nytimes.com/2005/07/10/magazine/the-seatbelt-solution.html (booster seats essentially worthless for children).
(Separately, regarding “2,400 Americans are dying every day from covid,” isn’t that inconsistent with a belief in Science and Science-informed government? We are informed that we have a vaccine that is almost completely effective at preventing death from Covid. We have a Science-respecting president in the White House, assisted by a spouse who is an actual “Dr.”. At least in Democrat-governed states such as Massachusetts, New York, and California, there shouldn’t be any deaths from Covid. Yet checking https://covid.cdc.gov/covid-data-tracker/#cases_deathsper100klast7days we see that Massachusetts, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Illinois have high current death rates. Misgoverned anti-Science irresponsible Florida has 1/30th the death rate compared to Maskachusetts.)
There is no propaganda movement. Malone is in favor of personal risk management and had an adverse vaccine reaction himself.
Unlike fascist states like Austria, he does not mandate anything. He does not forbid the vaccine.
It is interesting that you want to erase the memory of Malone. Let’s assume that your statements about vaccine efficacy are true (which I doubt, given the graph in this very blog post). Shall we then remove all sugary drinks and unhealthy foods from public memory. No one is allowed to mention Coca Cola any more, the name will cease to exist?
How about Cannabis, which sends a substantial number of children to the ICU?
It seems that demands for authoritarian health management by central committee are rather selective.
Why should we reference Dr. Malone and not Ms. Mileva Einstein – Maric? Does not sound fair.
Anon: You raise a great point. Obesity has killed way more people than COVID-19. Why is it legal to refer to sweets and junk food? Why do Facebook and Twitter allow the posting of tempting images of desserts? Why does Google allow potato chips to be advertised via its network? If we were to fact check a Coca Cola or Frito-Lay campaign regarding the deliciousness of their respective products, we’d have to say that the statements were “missing context” (i.e., that a person who drinks and eats these items will likely find him/her/zir/theirself getting fatter). That’s “misinformation” in my book.
@philg – you don’t think there is a distinction between food advertising – a product that has been with us for quite a while, and the Covid vaccines? Is there anyone out there anymore saying a 16oz bottle of Coke will improve your health? You believe the inventor of mRNA saying those vaccines aren’t worth the risk is the same type of message as and advertisement for Wendy’s?
@Craig: China doesn’t seem to think vaccines are worth very much, and they should know! They are isolating every single living human being coming into their country from the General Public, regardless of their vaccination status.
@Craig: It’s a little like: “If the vaccines work, why does China greet every person coming into their country – including all the vaccinated ones – as though they are contaminated with plutonium?”
@Alex – maybe the vaccines aren’t as effective as we first thought. Are they dangerous though and shouldn’t be taken? Is there more risk than reward to taking the vaccine? I believe that’s what Robert Malone is contending.
Craig: The worst “misinformation” that the righteous at the Washington Post could find is the following…
“Regarding the genetic covid vaccines, the science is settled,” he said in a 15-minute speech that referenced the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. and John F. Kennedy. “They are not working.”
The vaccines were sold as a pandemic-ending tool and yet, even in states and countries that are almost 100% vaccinated, the pandemic is not over (as measured by mask orders and other restrictions). As measured by the standards of December 2020, I think Malone’s statement is factually correct (i.e., not even a matter of opinion).
Regarding the risk-reward guess, that’s necessarily a matter of opinion since we don’t have the required 10-ish years of experience and data to do anything other than guess. (And, of course, we will likely find that the risk-reward calculation is dramatically different for humans of different ages.)
@philg – do you believe this lengthy article in the Atlantic is factually incorrect : https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2021/08/robert-malone-vaccine-inventor-vaccine-skeptic/619734/ ?
I haven’t looked into the Atlantic’s sources but if the article is factual, Malone has said quite a bit more than you are alleging.
In ten years the unvaccinated will find out if the vaccines did end up causing third nipples or something – if Covid doesn’t kill them first.
I’m looking at the Atlantic article now. “Speaking as a doctor, he would probably recommend their use only for those at highest risk from COVID-19. Everyone else should be wary, he told me, and those under 18 should be excluded entirely.” That’s consistent with what my physician and med school professor friends say. They’d recommend the vaccine to anyone over 50 or 60, give the vaccine to folks 30-60 who asked for it, and not give the vaccine to any healthy normal-weight person under 30.
One big question for me is why censoring and unpersoning people like Malone and Djokovic is thought to be an effective way to boost public confidence in these vaccines as an ideal injection for every 5-year-old. Ordinary people are capable of noticing the desperate measures being taken to suppress questions and dissent. The usual situation in which this kind of suppression is undertaken is when the government or a big company is lying. So the natural inference from seeing that Malone has been unpersoned is that Malone is telling the truth and the priests of public health are lying.
@philg – yes I think this was probably too heavy handed, an overreaction, and counter-productive.
I think though that people able to discern the above are also able to discern that we are in new territory with social media and a not very well understood and rare pandemic.
I wonder if anyone else takes a look at the very unfortunate subreddit called “H
CA” for the Herman Cain Awards. The subreddit has posts describing the same pattern of Covid and Vax deniers posting the same Meme’s, with the final post bein an announcement of their death. Very disheartening. https://www.reddit.com/r/HermanCainAward/
Craig: It is fun for the religious to reflect on the punishments that their god meets out to heretics, but when we finally get some good data from this latest Omicron wave (e.g., UK data), I’m willing to bet that there are far more deaths among those who believed in vaccines and got vaccines than among the unvaccinated. I’d also bet that the data will show that vaccination reduced an individual’s chance of death, but nowhere near as much as American media suggests.
“About 2,400 Americans are dying every day from covid”
Nope. 2400 Americans are dying every day WITH (presumed) covid.
Fixed it for you.
@philg – well that’s a very bold prediction. To be clear, you believe ultimately that those who are vaccinated will have suffered a higher death rate than the unvaccinated (of course adjusted for the time period that the vaccine was available)?
What mechanism would cause this to be true? Surely not the vaccine itself, but some other higher order effect?
Craig: I meant to write the opposite, i.e., that the unvaccinated will have a somewhat higher death rate.
You can already see this for the pre-Omicron UK. Download the Excel spreadsheet from https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/birthsdeathsandmarriages/deaths/bulletins/deathsinvolvingcovid19byvaccinationstatusengland/deathsoccurringbetween1januaryand31october2021 and look at Table 1 for October 2021. 393 deplorably unvaccinated people in the UK died with a COVID-19 tag. 2256 virtuously vaccinated people died. The Brits love to standardize everything by life-years (unlike Medicare, they won’t spend $millions to add a few months of life to a disabled 90-year-old) so the risk of death is a little confusing by American standards. They’re saying it is 285 per 100,000 life-years for the deplorables and 64 for the righteous. I think the adjustment reflects the fact that the unvaccinated who die from/with COVID-19 are younger than the vaccinated who die (if only because nearly all old people in most countries are vaccinated).
@Craig: > maybe the vaccines aren’t as effective as we first thought. Are they dangerous though and shouldn’t be taken? Is there more risk than reward to taking the vaccine?
Let’s leave aside for the moment the risk to forcing children to receive the vaccine.
According to many of the teacher’s unions in this country, the only acceptable level of risk to which they will subject their members for in-class learning is ZERO. Yesterday NPR did a segment on the (in either RI or CT) “Test-to-Stay” system, wherein they are testing every student every day, making them wear masks, and subjecting them to that treatment indefinitely. Their positivity rate as reported is approximately 1%. So they are going to force these kids to grow up as though they living in a contamination ward until we get a vaccine that eliminates an airborne coronavirus completely.
When the Moderna mRNA vaccine was developed in February of 2020 (!! Yes) I knew from my undergraduate studies in immunology at a pretty good University (at a time when the inventor of technology could express their skepticism and other doubts about it without being canceled by media companies) that a lasting, protecting vaccine to an airborne coronavirus had 1) Never been developed and 2) Probably never will be.
But that is not how these vaccines were sold, how the government used and manipulated people to believe they would work, and then spent north of $10 trillion dollars acting on what is basically a LIE.
@philg – I looked at the UK data and narrative and it will take me a while to understand it. For me it just emphasizes how difficult it is to measure and communicate results to allow people to make good informed decisions. It looks like a four or five to one improvement in preventing death from Covid? If it only provided a 20% or 30% improvement would that make it worthwhile to receive the vaccine given the unknown long-term risks?
Since this post seems to have whipped up the anti-vax/ivermectin/government control crowd, I’ll just ask you straight up – do you believe as @Alex does that the vaccines are a lie? What do you recommend to your loved ones/friends about taking the vaccines?
Craig: “If it only provided a 20% or 30% improvement would that make it worthwhile to receive the vaccine given the unknown long-term risks?”
As far as I can tell from the Atlantic article, Dr. Malone’s core message, prior to being silenced, was that you have to segment the population by age, just as SARS-CoV-2 does. Your statement above is likely true for an 80-year-old and might well prove to be untrue for a 5-year-old (whose risk from the virus is very small to begin with). The value of a risk reduction cannot be the same for people of all ages unless SARS-CoV-2 infection has an equally bad effect on people of all ages.
> anti-vax/ivermectin/government control crowd
I’m vaccinated against all sorts of things where the vaccine a) provides real protection and b) does not require a booster every 3 months.
You were the one who brought up Ivermectin. Has anyone seriously promoted or used Ivermectin on this blog? Thank you for demonstrating typical online mainstream discussion tactics.
I used ivermectin when I got the delta cooties. Not sure if it did anything, but for a guy of my age (I did program the computers made of germanium transistors, LOL) the delta was at the level of moderate cold. The only interesting part was not smelling anything for 2 days.
‘(Separately, regarding “2,400 Americans are dying every day from covid,” isn’t that inconsistent with a belief in Science and Science-informed government?”‘
Not when 1,800 of them are unvaccinated.
“We are informed that we have a vaccine that is almost completely effective at preventing death from Covid.'”
If the vaccine were only 80% effective at preventing death from covid, would that be a useful vaccine? Would you take it?
“How about anything that Big Health Care would label “alternative medicine”? Surely we don’t want people being swayed by misinformation and seeking homeopathy rather than a visit to the Emergency Department.”
I do wonder how Steve Jobs would feel about that.
Millennial Al: Thanks for the Steve Jobs reference. You’re proving my point that we need to ramp up our censorship to cover every kind of misinformation, not just what the righteous judge to be misinformation regarding COVID-19. “Jobs refused surgery after diagnosis and for nine months after, favoring instead dietary treatments and other alternative methods. … Jobs had spent time studying Buddhism in India, and he felt it served him in his work. “The main thing I’ve learned is intuition, that the people in India are not just pure rational thinkers, that the great spiritual ones also have an intuition.” … Jobs’ postponement of surgery in favor of alternative means was a bizarre executive decision.”
We could have saved Steve Jobs if we had banned the dissemination of opinions regarding Buddhism, alternatives to surgery, diet tips not approved by the AMA, etc.
Regarding “Not when 1,800 of them are unvaccinated”, I can believe that 1,800 Americans died with a COVID-19 tag who did not get a vaccine at the same health care facility where they were finally tagged as dead from/with COVID-19 (and therefore the vaccination and death would be in the same computer system). But the 1800/600 ratio is inconsistent with what the British report from their central NHS database. If you look at the Excel spreadsheet from https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/birthsdeathsandmarriages/deaths/bulletins/deathsinvolvingcovid19byvaccinationstatusengland/deathsoccurringbetween1januaryand31october2021 and look at Table 1 for October 2021 (the most recent month available, you can see that the ratio was 393/2256 for deaths among the unvaccinated/vaccinated). The UK and the US have similar vaccination rates (right next to each other in the Bar Chart of Righteousness on https://ourworldindata.org/covid-vaccinations ). So you either have to believe that there is a difference in the virus and vaccine effectiveness between the UK and the US or that the US is incompetent at keeping medical records while the UK is competent.
@Everyone but especially Millennial Al:
I have an interesting data point that I’ve been reluctant to share because it involved a little eavesdropping. While I was recently in the hospital being prepped for surgery in the pre-op area, everyone was assigned to stations that were separated by retractable drapes. As a result it was not very difficult to overhear the conversations going on between doctors and other patients in the adjacent stations.
One of the patients in the next station over was about to have an operation for a condition at least as serious and dangerous as mine. The doctor asked her if she had been vaccinated. She stated very clearly and firmly: “No. And I don’t want to be, at least right now. I am having enough trouble coping with the problems I have right now and I do not want to deal with the side effects of the vaccine with everything else that is going on.”
The doctor was not surprised, did not express any alarm, and said: “I understand that decision.”
So this was someone who was in a very good hospital, she was an obviously well-informed and educated woman (as I could judge from the rest of the conversation I overheard) and she made the decision not be vaccinated, even though she was quite seriously ill.
We don’t see the demographic breakdown, case histories, decision histories and comorbidities of these “unvaccinated people dying of COVID” – we only see the numbers, nothing fine-grained. I take it that there are a lot of people who are seriously ill and undergoing treatment but made the decision not to get that jab, just as my pre-op “neighbor” had.
By the way, I took the opposite decision and got vaccinated back in March/April and boosted in November.
This post does not strike me as fair, Phil. So on the one hand you give a lot of space to Dr. Malone whose work was instrumental in developing the vaccines, but omit any mention of Neil Young, who strongly believes that views like Malone’s that are at odds with science should be censored. Ok i accept that Neil Young hasn’t done anything of consequence in close to 50 years, that no one under the age of say 50 has probably ever heard of the guy, and that for all I know maybe he never even completed high school, but the media seem to think that his views on the science are worth repeating. So shouldn’t Neil Young be given equal time here?
That’s a great point. #Science backs Mr. Young, in the form of the WHO: https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2022/jan/27/who-chief-backs-neil-young-over-covid-misinformation-row-with-spotify-joe-rogan
(Who knows more about Science than WHO?)
The only thing better than Silicon Valley censorship is censorship by an international bureaucracy not accountable to any voters.
See also https://www.billboard.com/music/music-news/neil-young-letter-black-lives-matter-president-donald-trump-joe-biden-9398059/
We also need opinions of Baseball, Hollywood, Basketball and Football greats. Can not form correct opinion without them
Neil Young is currently a darling of the Democrats because of his attempt to cancel Joe Rogan. Quite a change from the 1980s indeed:
Politically-speaking, its hard to exorcise the ghost of his 1980s pronouncements, when he swung hard-right behind the Reagan presidency and lashed out at gays (“you go to the supermarket and you see a faggot behind the fucking cash register, you don’t want him to handle your potatoes”) and welfare spongers. “Stop being supported by the government and get out and work,” Neil advised. “You have to make the weak stand up on one leg, or half a leg, whatever they’ve got.
Quite a change of opinion on government intervention.
Anon: Isn’t Joe Rogan a Democrat who supported Sanders and later Biden?
I think Dems are already at purges stage.
Neil Young certain was out of step with the trends when he suggested that Americans should work rather than live in means-tested public housing, enjoy means-tested SNAP/EBT-shopping, receive health care from means-tested Medicaid, and chat on a means-tested Obamaphone! https://www.thenation.com/article/archive/anthems-outrage/ has a longer version of the quote: On welfare Young has opined that the poor should “stop being supported by the government and get out and work. You can’t always support the weak. You have to make the weak stand up on one leg, or a half a leg, or whatever they got.”
(How are the weak supposed to stand up if they’ve been provided with a river of taxpayer-funded opioids? See https://philip.greenspun.com/blog/2016/12/21/who-funded-americas-opiate-epidemic-you-did/ )
CT: Yes, Rogan has identified himself as a liberal many times. He has independent thoughts and an independent channel, which makes him the equivalent of a modern Trotskyite who must be purged.
(Naturally, mainstream people like Justin Trudeau can “wear blackface” and Joe Biden can talk about the “racial jungle” or call a reporter a “son of a …” without being purged.)
A complete history would include the 30 years of unsuccessful efforts to produce a safe mRNA vax, culminating in big pharma remarkably developing 3 vax just a few months!
While highly unlikely, at least it is in the realm of possible.
Now, what I haven’t heard about is any breakthrough in suppressing ADE generated by all previous attempts to vaccinate against CoV. Without that the vaccines must be assumed highly dangerous.
San Jose apparently passed a law requiring gun owners to carry liability insurance. Maybe that model should be applied to unaccountable talking heads that espouse potentially dangerous medical advice. Yes that would apply to homeopathic/alternative medicine Doctors or experts. If an adventurous person listened to a podcast and decided ivermectin (or injecting bleach) was the way to cure Covid based on the podcast expert and then expired, a suit could be brought by the grieving family. Haven’t the tobacco companies been sued for junk science? Is there a reason the FDA exists?
Free speech is the greatest thing in the world – but requiring somebody to defend their medical opinions in court would quickly expose the line between free speech and malpractice.
What a Freedom of Speech!
So your plan of Freedom of Speech as Decided by Judges and Juries would also force people who misstate medical advice given by others (oral administration of chlorine dioxide not injection of bleach) and advocate against effective treatments (https://www.hilarispublisher.com/open-access/determination-of-the-effectiveness-of-chlorine-dioxide-in-the-treatment-of-covid19-67319.html) to pay for their opinions also?
Note that you cannot quibble against this study’s conclusions as it was was performed by the perfectly BIPOC people of Bolivia and affirmed as Science by their democratically elected representatives who legalized the sale of chlorine dioxide treatments.
@Craig Hilarious considering the mRNA vaccine manufacturers have total and complete immunity from any and all liability involving their vaccines. Yes let the vaccine manufacturers defend their products in court, oh wait they will never have to. And their previous vaccines had a special secret court for adjudicating claims of harm.
If we trust the science there is no reason for them to have immunity from liability.
Craig – are you sure your other name aint Mike? You sound familiar …
@GB – The vaccine manufactures readily acknowledge the very slight risk of side effects and personal injury cause by their vaccine use. Because vaccines are so beneficial to society our Government has decided it’s better to provide immunity to the vaccine manufacturers in order to ensure great vaccines continue to be developed and produced. In lieu of claims against manufactures, the Government has created programs to compensate victims of vaccine side effects. These programs are the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP) https://www.hrsa.gov/vaccine-compensation/index.html and the Countermeasures Injury Compensation Program (CICP) https://www.hrsa.gov/cicp. I’m not sure what secret courts you are referring to, the VICP and CICP programs seem pretty transparent from what I can tell.
@Anonymous – If a doctor in Bolivia unsuccessfully treats a Covid patient using Chlorine Dioxide, that patients survivors would probably have a weak malpractice case in the Bolivian courts. If a doctor does the same thing in the U.S., the doctor would most likely be held liable for malpractice.
Craig, you need to buy insurance to advise vaccines on this blog. In case someone follows your advice and suffers from vaccine side effects. Almost everyone suffers to vaccine side effects to some degree.
Craig: In other words, regulatory capture of the podcast industry that benefits the entrenched mainstream media giants. How original.
Why would there be a motivation to make ‘great vaccines’ when you have immunity from making bad ones, or just OK ones? They don’t even have to test them anymore. Show me the long term safety studies in humans on mRNA vaccines. In animal trials mRNA has a perfect record, all of the animals died.
@AnotherAnon – I don’t think the issue is the podcast industry. In this case the question arises as to the responsibilities of those providing medical advice that may be incorrect. Robert Malone’s content was removed from social media sites because he consistently was anti-mRNA vax, and held himself out as an expert. There is a limit to all speech, and the real question is did he deservedly cross a line that caused him to be de-platformed or disappeared from history?
In a larger sense though we need to continue to hold people accountable for providing harmful medical advice if it leads to injury or death. We do that already with conventional doctors, and this should be extended to others claiming expertise. There are so many regulations now as a result of our nations’ history with medical quackery that I don’t understand why this is even controversial.
Craig, injury is in the eye of the beholder. And every life matters, and thus every death, especially give that serious side effects and deaths happen in young people who without vaccine would have long life expectancy.
It is not theoretical reasoning, I had misfortune to observe a side effect in young athletic person who decided triple vaccinate himself, which was much worse then actual disease that he got, as usually double-masked following CDC guidelines. His side – effect was worse them my infection.
If someone vaccinated based on your advise and fell ill, would you be ready to pay damages, unless you are protected pharmaceutical company representative of course?
This is not a personal attack but a logical inference based on your suggestion which would be considered by any court if a precedent could be established.
It is for the sake of reasonable argument.
@perplexed – To answer your hypothetical – I don’t hold myself out as any type of medical expert, and don’t provide medical advice other than to see a competent doctor for any medical questions.
It’s distressing to hear that you observed a serious vaccine reaction, but as I said above, adverse reactions do and will happen (at very low rates), and this is understood when somebody signs all the paperwork to get the vaccine.
Craig, but you do give advice, and it is protected by freedom of speech.
Everyone I know including myself (one dose a while ago) suffered from at least one side effect. I with all the people I spoke with can not be an outlier. I estimate that vaccine causing prolonged pain in my arm that correlated with start of muscle / tendon inflammation tat requires treatment up to now caused much more health damage to myself due to me skipping on working out and aerobic exercises then a case of infection. Pre-vaccine, I was running 5 K one week after infection. Dear me is important to myself. I could sue those who advised vaccination if not for freedom of speech.
Craig: Your liability plan is brilliant, but I wonder how it would work in practice. If I could get appointed by Uncle Joe as a top Covidcrat I would respond to Americans’ dreams of living forever by (1) ordering schools closed forever (save kids from influenza deaths), (2) forbidding trips by bicycle, car, or plane except as necessary for work, (3) sealing all borders (risk of contagious diseases introduced by visitors, migrants, or returning American tourists), (4) electronically enforced speed limit of 35 mph for all cars, etc. Any doctor who is less strict than I would be can then be sued.
@philg – I guess you might get away with that. I wonder what kind of evidence is introduced in malpractice trials? You have a lot of MD acquaintances it seems – maybe you can find out what appeal to expertise is used to determine if malpractice has occurred. I know you work as an expert witness too, so there must be an analog in the medical malpractice world.
Craig: I’m not an expert on malpractice litigation, but I think the typical case rests on the “standard of care”. Every patient of every doctor will eventually die, so the standard can’t be “did the patient survive?” The doctor needs to show that he/she/ze/they did whatever other doctors typically do (the “standard of care”). See https://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/what-the-medical-standard-care-malpractice-case.html
If we apply this to Covid Science, anyone in sync with the prevailing GroupThink (“no masks” then “cloth masks” then “N95 masks”, depending on the month) would be free of liability. The British, however, who dropped nearly all their Covid restrictions in the past week (no more masks in schools, on the Tube, or anywhere else; no vaccine papers checks even at rock concerts, etc.), are now liable for every COVID-19-tagged death going forward. They’re not following the standard of care.
Craig – I encourage you to vaccinate and have at least three boosters. Monthly boosting is even better.
How timely – a family is suing their Covid-deceased mothers health care provider for *not* giving her the vaccine: https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-10449629/Family-mom-MS-died-COVID-sues-hospital-doctors-refused-vaccine.html due to vaccine mis-information.
Ad hominem attacks are beneath us all (except for me). I think Craig is a major dumb dumb!
Craig: Your proposal is effectively regulatory capture, because anyone who shows a YouTube video now needs the legal teams and bureaucracy of large mainstream propaganda outlets like CNN or the NYT (you can’t just buy insurance and hope they’ll pay any claim).
This is exactly what CNN, NYT and their masters want. Top-down prescribed #Science that changes weekly and remains uncontradicted.
How many people have been even harmed by Ivermectin? In comparison, how many soldiers have been enticed to join the army at the impressionable age of 18 and then lost their health or lives for some geriatric president who needed a war to push up his/her/zir/their ratings?
Has #Science proven the existence of God? Should we seize all holdings of the Catholic Church, which might pay for one of Biden’s stimulus packages?
> Is there a reason the FDA exists?
The FDA has approved many harmful substances. The FDA should regulate what you buy in a pharmacy, not speech on Spotify or Twitter. Malone’s influence is completely overblown. He is popular because he articulates what many people think anyway, and he may be right.
You can also sue the government now, which distributes harmful Ivermectin disinformation:
Conclusion: In this large PSM study, regular use of ivermectin as a prophylactic agent was associated with significantly reduced COVID-19 infection, hospitalization, and mortality rates.
James Watson was similarly erased after coming out as a racist. Seems to be a trend of scientists getting erased by the politicians telling us to be scientific.
Malone reminds me of what Scientific American used to be like before the entire #Scientific endeavor was shackled, placed under house arrest and made to bend to the whims of its political paymasters, just as Allan Bloom warned us would happen. It has happened! It is the greatest travesty that has ever occurred in this country, and there are many.
New York Times… a communist rag. Worse than Pravda in Soviet times, actually.
averros: Rewriting history was certainly part of Stalinist and Maoist political systems. But it is accurate to call the NYT “communist”? In the societies that we call “communist” people had to work. The central tenet of the NYT is that nobody should have to work in order to receive housing, health care, food, and smartphone. The “communist” societies were not open to low-skill migrants eager to occupy government-provided housing and this is another pillar of the NYT’s faith.
> in the societies that we call “communist” people had to work.
Actually, under communism (as was taught by Soviet schools) nobody HAD to work, and the work was presented as a basic self-fulfillment need of a New Man. The Soviet and Chinese systems were socialist with communism being a distant goal. Basically, communism is the eschatology of socialism. The whole justification for having socialism was building communism in which people were supposed to give to the society according to their abilities, and were provided by the society according to their needs. (That formulation comes from the utopian novel by Étienne Cabet and was the staple of Soviet propaganda (notably, Icarus was a rather common character) – though in fact it has roots in The Book of Acts).
In practice, due to disutility of labor, people had to be forced to work (unemployment was a crime punishable by jail time). I.e. the socialist system was nothing more than totalitarian slavery for the benefit of Party bosses. Something the American middle class starts to understand. Communism is no longer an abstract cartoonish Evil Thing of Cold War era, it’s now getting close and personal.
There’s a world of difference between propaganda promising the land of eternal youth with milk rivers and self-frying pigs and the reality in which people need to labor to produce necessities of life such as food. New York Times does communist propaganda (and the necessities are conveniently provided by the capitalist economy NYT so explicitly despises).
“The “communist” societies were not open to low-skill migrants” – actually, being explicitly internationalist, they were. Except nobody in his right mind wanted to migrate to Maoist China or the USSR except for narrow family or ideological reasons (or sometimes as refugees from even more obnoxious socialist regimes!). The official propaganda made a lot of fuss over such immigrants, and they certainly were given preferential access to housing (for propaganda reasons).
The American communist Left obsession with unskilled migration is purely utilitarian – the low-skilled migrants usually come from socialist societies (and make no mistake, Middle East is solidly socialist in practice), and thus are expected to be reliable voters for the Democrats (and historically they were). Add the deep ideological hatred the Left has for the white Christian Deplorables — which, in fact, is no different from Soviet persecution of Christians, except Soviets seized the totalitarian power first and then proceeded with direct extermination of priests and destruction of churches (the later phases included “softer” suppression of the religion such as on-going anti-religious propaganda not dissimilar from writings of IYIs like Dawkins and denial of career advancement prospects or ability to practice a profession to those who were caught expressing pro-religious views).
99% averros, all true except small omission. Except soviet persecution of Jews was much harsher the Soviet persecution of Orthodox Christians. I would say that soviet Pentacostals and other Baptists were persecuted to the same degree as Jews but without of ethnic component to it.
The NYT has had a long and intense love affair with the Soviet style socialism/communism starting with the Pulitzer prize winner Walter Duranty (1932, the Moscow bureau chief) who published a series of articles glorifying the life under Stalin and continuing with rather bizarre recent stories educating its readership on how great was soviets’ sex life under socialism (2017).
Certainly, Marxist theory and practice is an explicit or lightly disguised part of the eclectic woke ideology the newspaper is so active in advancing. However, the new religion in-the-making is sufficiently different to be glibly categorized as just another variety of “communism”,e.g. communist ideology never aimed at self-destructing, was much more rational, as another commenter indicated, in the matters that were important for the adherents survival(math and hard sciences).
@averros, @Ivan: I’ve always enjoyed Victor Belenko’s story, myself (from the Wikidripedia entry):
“Belenko almost never appears in interviews. However, in a brief and informal bar interview in 2000 where he posed for pictures and responded to questions, he stated that he was happy in the United States. Belenko remarked in the interview that “[Americans] have tolerance regarding other people’s opinion. In certain cultures, if you do not accept the mainstream, you would be booted out or might disappear. Here we have people — you know who hug trees, and people who want to cut them down — and they live side by side!””
Belenko was was astounded that American women could just walk into a convenience store and purchase basic feminine hygiene products:
“I bought a box of Freedom with the picture of nice looking lady. I did not know what it was. (I’m talking about maxi-pads.) I brought it to my apartment, I opened it, and I tried to figure it out. I thought well it’s probably some cleaning device for the kitchen to give these American women freedom in the kitchen to clean up and absorb everything, because even today Russian women do not have this convenience.”
@averros, Ivan: I was shocked by the price of Belenko’s story on Amazon, as the book is out of print. Who is going to pay $100 for a a copy? A lot of “students” in American universities should read it.
Fortunately it hasn’t yet been #Canceled from the Internet despite Belenko’s relentless sexual binarism and even what reads like a chivalrous tone where females are concerned. A couple of .ru domain sites have it, but you can also get it on Scribd:
“To be a MiG pilot in Russia is to be as close to heaven as communism allows. Millions are spent on your training. And nothing is too lavish for your living. Lt. Viktor Belenko was a MiG-25 pilot — one of Russia’s elite warriors and the supreme expression of the ideal communist man. Or so everyone believed. Then on September 6, 1976, while on a routine training flight, (he) veered off course — and embarked on an incredible escape, an unforgiveable betrayal of his nation, and a daring and torturous personal journey of hope and courage. This is the thrilling true story of how Russia’s greatest air military secret was stolen and delivered right to America’s lap. But it’s more — it’s the fascinating life story of a peasant’s son who grew up to possess every luxury and honor Russia can bestow. And who threw it all away for one desperate chance to possess a dream. The American Dream.”
Scribd is annoying if you’re not a member because they want a credit card or PayPal account for their free 30 day trial, but you can cancel before they bill you, and the book is only 118 pages in their format. Someone should print copies out and nail them to the doors of the Dean’s Offices at a bunch of elite American universities.
@Low Skilled Immigrant
“99% averros, all true except small omission. Except soviet persecution of Jews was much harsher the Soviet persecution of Orthodox Christians.”
Not. Even. Close. While Communists (and other species of socialists) are generally equal-opportunity cannibals and certainly persecuted Jews, the reality is that persecution of Orthodox faithful started much earlier and was far more brutal and deadly.
Basically, suppression of Christianity in Soviet Russia started right after the October Revolution and continued until the fall of the USSR. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Persecution_of_Christians_in_the_Soviet_Union
Some Jews took an active role in that – they were over-represented in NKVD and other Bolshevik organs. https://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3342999,00.html
One of them organized mass murder of over 7 million people, mostly Christians (his biggest atrocity is Holodomor: https://understandingsociety.blogspot.com/2021/12/the-holodomor.html). Belomorkanal and other slave-labor Soviet “industrialization” projects were side shows to that.
The targeted persecution of Jews in the USSR started in 1953, starting at the so-called “Doctors plot”. There is evidence that it started as a way to get rid of then head of NKVD (and notorious sexual predator), Lavrentiy Beria, whose retinue was mostly Jewish. Beria certainly attempted to position himself for seizing power after Stalin’s death (he was also responsible for doctors not being allowed to attend to unconscious Stalin for 12 hours). https://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/the-doctor-s-plot
(As a side note, the Red Army did protect Jews by suppressing pogroms in Ukraine after it re-conquered Ukrainian territory in 1921).
During post-Stalin times (“thaw” and then Brezhnev’s stagnation) openly practicing Christians were pretty much excluded from any form of employment other than menial labor. Suppression of Jews wasn’t mostly religious – what I’ve seen in the late USSR was that most of it was denial of admission to universities which catered mostly to Soviet military-industrial complex as they were considered likely to emigrate (at least they could after waiting for years for permission – I had many friends who were “otkazniki” – i.e. Jews denied immediate permission to leave and thus forced to wait). Rank-and-file Russians and other nationalities simply couldn’t leave the USSR, period, and thus weren’t considered security risks. Most ironically, a casual visit to any Soviet government department made it immediately obvious that Jews were way over-represented there (my immediate boss, a Jew, had drinking pals in the Central Committee of CPSU, and this circumstance did save my ass from being sent to war in Afganistan, for which I’m forever grateful).
So, no, the real history is not as clear-cut and one-sided as conventional American/Western narrative presents it. (I’m not sure why this obsession with sharp black / white division anyway?) The real evil of 20th (and now 21st) century is not ethnic or religious divisions – it’s this death cult, the collectivism, – also known as “leftism”, “communism”, “progressivism”, “Nazism”, “fascism”, etc, etc, etc. This cult murders by millions every time it manages to seize State power and convert it into a totalitarian machine.
Alex, I knew people who became military pilots. Soviet warplanes had about 50% accident rate. Many MiG pilots died in peace time accidents. Looking back it is not a far fetch to say that Belenko probably saved his life by defecting. Even so Belenko was not Jewish and there was not a single Jew serving in USSR military who defected anywhere during war or (cold war) times, maybe with exception of some stealth non provable defections in June 1945 – 1946 in Germany to US side, absolute majority of Soviet Jews were treated as security risk and precluded from entering many colleges and many civil occupations in Soviet Union. In hindsight, it was not a big miss.
Averros, Jewish Communists and Bolsheviks were small minority of all Russian Communists and Bolsheviks pre- and during Russian Communist Revolution and were under-represents in Communist party proportionally to their population numbers in Russian empire, several hundreds out of 30,000 strong Bolshevik fraction of Communists at the beginning of 1917 and negligible portion of 350,000 strong Bolshevik party in middle of 1917. They were over-represents in early Bolshevik government due to it being meritocracy, with about half – 40 % of Jewish Bolsheviks appointed to managing positions, most of them ending up in staff of Red Army whose founder was Trotsky. It was not allowed to say so during Soviet times due to Antisemitism and it is not being said now in modern Russia either. Russian Jews had their own lefty parties, such as thousands-string Jewish Bund, that Bolsheviks considered to be their enemies and whose members were harshly persecuted. Jewish politicians such as Martov and Moisey Ostrogorsky resisted Bolsheviks and were their enemy #1. Even Jewish Bolsheviks Kamenev and Zinovyev were against Bolshevik military coup and warned the public in the press. Bolshevik Jews had no base in Bolshevik party which was rukled by party democracy, i. e. its central committees and its plenum, large majority Russian, that fest supported Lenin and the Stalin who reduced its significance after winning.
It is blatant lie that persecution of Jews started in 1955 or that a Jew designed Holodomor. Synagogues were closed at the same time as Churches were attacked, right during the revolution and in 1920th and about time of Holodomor in early 1930th al Jewish secular schools were closed. During the revolution Rabbis were persecuted same as Christian priests and since 1920th – harsher. The difference was that while many churches and monasteries survived October revolution and early communist rule synagogues did not, only largest cities having being left one synagogue per hundreds of thousands of Jews and which was tightly controlled by NKVD/KGB. Neither Communist party nor KGB leaders in Ukraine during Holodomor were Jewish and Jewish agricultural colonies were subject of same food expropriations measures as Ukrainian villages, my great-grandmother died during Ukrainian Holodomor. Holodomor became known in large part due to honest reporting of 2 Jewish census takers that recorded population loss in Ukraine and who were promptly executed for that. Ukrainian cities and towns, where majority of Jews lived, were to gripped by famine, which Communists used to get remaining gold and valuables that were hidden from revolutionary expropriations. I can write a lot about this and provide many links, maybe I will do it when I am back.
Why would anyone want to send you, smart programmer, to Afghanistan?
That’s a great example of our times, the Nature versus NYT contrast. Not the first time that a scientist has become an unperson but the NYT did a thorough job. Even the Wikipedia article on DNA still grudgingly mentions James Watson, though not now in the introductory paragraphs. He’s been demoted to the small print (compare for example this older version).
The era of rationality (or at least, of aspiring to rationality) began about the time of Francis Bacon (not yet an unperson!) about 400 years ago. That era is over.
The era of aspiring to rationality goes as far back as to Aristotle (he invented logic:). The rationalism became the part of the official doctrine of the Church, in large part due to works of St. Thomas Aquinas (he was deemed Doctor Angelicus – which is the same as saying that what he wrote is considered the doctrine). Christian rationalism led to Enlightenment and science in modern sense (it is no accident that Western is the only civilization worth its name). The late 19th and 20th century utopian egalitarian quasi-religion (aka various socialisms) replaced science with scientism.
Anyway, rationalism is alive and well. It survived for millenia, and remains one of the major strands of thought. (In fact, even Soviets had to tolerate rationalist dissent for a very simple reason – rational thought is necessary for production and effective use of modern weapons. Thus, in post-Stalin “thaw” physicists became the leaders of liberalization.) The apparent failure of rationalism is just local Western affliction, which hopefully will blow over, with West rapidly losing military and economic supremacy.
averros, I could quibble with your first paragraph (e.g.) but no matter. This however
> just local Western affliction, which hopefully will blow over
makes me wonder in what sense western civilization is still alive, in your view? For example, is there any western country today whose historic peoples are other than a dwindling remnant who deprecate their own traditions and history?
As always, Church is a human institution and as such is governed mostly by politics, not by doctrine. Doctrine is the set of principles the priesthood is taught (and many keep faithful to these). That said, the guy who came up with heliocentric system in the first place, a Catholic canon Nicolaus Copernicus, did not suffer any persecution (though he died shortly after De revolutionibus orbium coelestium was published). A few priests helped to make this publication happen, including bishop of Chelmno, and two Lutheran theologicians. There is no record of them being persecuted by Church higher-ups, either.
A propos: the Orthodox Russia was late to the Enligtenment party mostly because Orthodox concept of theosis is more about spiritual revelation than about rationalist theology (as in Catholic faith and its branches).
Craig is not as serious person.
Don’t be like Craig
Anon: I don’t think this is fair! Craig believes what the priests of public health say. That’s not unserious. I think it is the same debate that transpired in England in the 14th century. Can laypeople read the Bible and understand it or should they uncritically rely on what the priests say? (the main difference being that 14th century priests didn’t change what they were saying every few months) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lollardy
I’m generally sympathetic to Dr. Malone’s plight and fight against censorship, but something doesn’t sit right with me when he talks about writing and dating a note when he had his idea for mRNA delivery. Did he foresee systemic doubt about his discovery?
Do you think he committed a thought crime? It is big distance between idea and safe final product; he does not push half-backed dangerous products on everyone. I think if those not really safe vaccines were used only by elderly they would be a huge plus.
COVID management will go down in history as the largest manmade blunder of all time.
The irony of it all is, after all the lockdowns, masks, distancing, vaccinations, billions of $ lost/spent, education, media coverage, et. al. to flatten the curve and save lives, not much has changed or will change when the dust settles down. Even worse, the wrong message is sent, that a vaccine or a pill *is* the cure for our illness and that our government *is* our savior. No wonder why our government spends like a drunken sailor and the pharmaceutical industry is over $400 billion.
Our central planners and the media, should have approached COVID with the simple message of good hygiene and good health.
Since this blog post and related comments have exposed an epistemological crisis, I’ll ask why it’s consistent to criticize the NY Times for their version of the “truth” but not criticize Malone for his version of the “truth?”
Are any of the media outlets obligated to provide time to anybody with alternative views? Can’t Malone fire up WordPress on AWS and let the free markets decide how relevant he is? I don’t believe the government has restricted his freedom of speech.
Since people are upset that so much of the “truth” about Covid has changed (which I consider normal learning) all one can ask is that the partisans clearly state their beliefs at various points in time so we can reward the “winners” once Covid is in our rearview mirrors.
Craig, are you sure that AWS would not ban Dr. Malone? There was huge precedent with parlor. Recall that youtube was bought by google and it is not a major revenue driver for it, most likely the purchase was driven by social order to stifle and control public discourse.
I think it is pretty clearly established that NYT is a lefty wanna-be party organ who now requests Democrats in US Congress to be institutionalized; it just foul to compare its propagandist pamphlets with mRNA “vaccine” process inventor Dr. Malone.
@LSI – you are hitting my point of the question – what soapbox is Malone owed by anybody? Although we might think it’s distasteful, until his constitutional free speech rights are proscribed we should just let the market sort it all out. Right now the NY Times seems to have figured out their demographic. If the NY Times believes he wasn’t worth a mention as a major contributor to mRNA vaccines – well that’s just their version of the truth. Just like Google might say they bought Youtube because they foresaw the incredible revenue potential, we can argue otherwise, since the truth is so uncertain.
Craig: This whole blog post is not primarily about free speech but about rewriting scientific history.
I would argue though that a serious newspaper also has an obligation to report a variety of opinions. The British press still does it for example.
Craig: I don’t think that the NYT and Malone are comparably situated. One has been unpersoned and written out of history while the other remains readily available (at least to subscribers like me!).
Can we get some sort of prize if we generate over 100 comments? What is the all time record holder of number of comments on this blog?
@Toucan Sam: It might be enshrined in the “Commented-on-heavily” category — but that’s very selfish. Isn’t the main reward being “part of the process?” From each according to their abilities and to each according to their needs, as it were?
I don’t for one instant doubt that Philip has the brainpower to assess what our abilities and needs are, but I would be very disappointed if he did it that way! However, I will not speak for him!
@Philg: If we push this baby over 100 with relevant comments, do we all get something from Disney World, or perhaps Machine Gun America? Lol.
@ Alex (1.0, Gun control means hitting your target). The comment moderation policy is silent on this issue! I do think a meet up would be warranted! I would like to see our host Phil shoot a gun. I wonder if he has ever shot one before.
TS: I have done trapshooting with 12 gauge shotguns a couple of times (a friend actually has the whole thing set up at his house in coastal Maine). I have shot at targets with 9mm and .22 pistols a few times. I did some .22 rifle shooting as a kid. I’m not a gun owner because I already have enough hobbies that require regular training to maintain proficiency. As I’ve noted here a few times, I do think that private gun ownership is at risk in the U.S. due to increasing population and a population that has little in common culturally. The response of U.S. residents to SARS-CoV-2 also suggests that we are in the final decades of private gun ownership. When Americans are presented with a choice between freedom and safety it seems that the majority will choose safety (which, of course, was not delivered (see https://www.statista.com/statistics/1104709/coronavirus-deaths-worldwide-per-million-inhabitants/ ), but hardly any of those who cheerfully surrendered their freedom seem to have noticed the failure).
From the NYT: https://www.nytimes.com/2022/01/30/world/asia/covid-restrictions-china-lockdown.html
Living by the Code: In China, Covid-Era Controls May Outlast the Virus; The country has instituted a wide range of high-tech controls on society as part of a mostly successful effort to stop the virus. The consequences may endure.
(Of course, the U.S. is still the Land of the Free from the perspective of the NYT! An American 5+ just has to show his/her/zir/their vaccine papers in order to enter a restaurant, attend school, get a job, etc.)
@philg – I’m surprised you still fly since you must comply with ATC. Didn’t you give up your freedoms to take off and land where and when you want in your Cirrus? You even have to have supplemental oxygen (mask or cannula) over 14,000 feet. But I don’t necessarily believe in the science behind hypoxia since there is too much money involved by those that produce oxygen. And we don’t necessarily know what the long term effects are of excessive oxygen – so we can’t really make good decisions about the risks.
Craig: ATC does not inject an experimental substance into your body for which the European Commission had to revise GMO rules. ATC is proven to work, unlike the vaccine that has possibly prolonged COVID-19 to the historically longest respiratory virus pandemic. The comparison is silly.
(Note that unlike the NYT, philg has not yet censored and unpersoned you. Isn’t freedom of expression great?)
ATC provides great services to pilots who request services, but most US airspace does not require that a pilot talk to ATC, have a radio in the aircraft, or even have an electrical system in the aircraft.
@philg – unless flying IFR or need to get in or out of class B,C, or D airports. I know you are a highly experienced pilot – so not trying to be disrespectful, but pointing out to others that for flying as a practical hobby/profession ATC and the FAA are going to be in your knickers.
Guns of course are going that way, and I don’t want to open up the whole gun debate, but there is a certain freedom in having regulations that everyone complies with to allow the greatest amount of freedoms for everyone.
Craig: you do suggest a good system for controlling Covid (since, of course, control by humans is always possible). Every person who wants to leave his/her/zir/their bunker must first get clearance from Ground Traffic Control (GTC). GTC can ensure at least 6’ of separation among residents of the US at all times by tracking everyone’s mobile phone location. It will be illegal to leave the house without carrying a compliant phone.
@philg – That’s a very good funny reply – love it! I think my wife is already a qualified controller. Reductio ad absurdum tactics can be quite clever.
And I have to add, I can’t wait until auto’s are talking to each other to maintain separation and traffic jams are a thing of the past. I can’t stand those freedom loving speeders that cause accidents and jam up the daily commute. Where is my freedom to get someplace on time?
Craig, I tell ATc when and where I want to fly. They provide service to accommodate me to avoid otherwise _gauranteed_ collision with another aircraft. Collision will result with death almost 99.99999%. With Covid symptom reducer substance I’m Commanded to have it OR otherwise I can get sick and possibly die with 0.02% certainty (age 30 and older) or get some crazy sideffect (pretty much 3 out 10 people I know got them) from the substance. And btw I got Covid and had LESSER symptoms and consequences vs my vaccinated significant other…..
Alex22b: I don’t think that you’re giving enough credit to Craig’s argument. A person follows elaborate and proven-effective rules when flying an airplane, controlling an oil refinery, or handling Ebola in a BSL-4 lab. Therefore, it is obvious that the same person should be delighted to follow elaborate and proven-ineffective rules when going out for a walk in the woods (depending on the month, illegal in Massachusetts unless wearing a mask), going to school, etc. Also, because the person follows the rule book when managing the oil refinery or flying the Airbus A380, he/she/ze/they should be delighted to inject his/her/zir/their child with an emergency use authorized (i.e., not FDA-approved) vaccine.
Does alex22b think gun control means hitting your target?
@philg – I thought you were primarily concerned about the choice between freedom and safety – at least from your comment above. In other words, we should allow more injury and death to ensure continued freedoms. Now you are saying it’s a choice between freedom and ineffective/risky interventions? Or is it both? It’s an important distinction since the ineffectiveness and risk problem is solvable. The freedom/safety tension is much more difficult to address.
Craig: the original post is celebrating the nimbleness of the NYT in rewriting history so that the purged-two-weeks-earlier Malone is absent. It doesn’t address the question of “the choice between freedom and safety” in the context of COVID-19 since, at least anywhere other than China and perhaps a few islands, there does not seem to have been any revocation of freedom that resulted in greater safety.
As noted above, though COVID-19 doesn’t seem to have been responsive to government interventions, I do think that there are a lot of life-years to be saved given what we now know about Americans’ preferences. Above, I wrote “If I could get appointed by Uncle Joe as a top Covidcrat I would respond to Americans’ dreams of living forever by (1) ordering schools closed forever (save kids from influenza deaths), (2) forbidding trips by bicycle, car, or plane except as necessary for work, (3) sealing all borders (risk of contagious diseases introduced by visitors, migrants, or returning American tourists), (4) electronically enforced speed limit of 35 mph for all cars, etc.”
To that I would add alcohol prohibition and also, since obesity cuts a lot of lives short, government-supervised and controlled diets for all Americans, maybe with a daily weigh-in. Why is a resident of the U.S. allowed to go to Krispy Kreme if he/she/ze/they weighs 2 lbs. more than yesterday and/or 5 lbs. more than the authorized BMI range?
See https://philip.greenspun.com/blog/2020/12/22/coronaplague-experts-and-prohibition/ and https://philip.greenspun.com/blog/2020/05/15/use-testing-and-tracing-infrastructure-to-enforce-alcohol-prohibition/ and https://philip.greenspun.com/blog/2016/06/11/reintroduce-prohibition-for-the-u-s/
@philg, your opinion on future ofn gun ownership in the USA and your track record as a prophet gives me new hope that 2nd Amendment is poised to survive for long time.
On another hand @Criag’s confused worldview puts under suspicion positive answer to second part of Benjamin’s Franklin response question when asked what form of government Constitutional Convention of 1787 came up with: “A Republic, if you can keep it”.
I think that original Alex, who rightly notes that gun control means proper, safe, reliable and robust operation of firearm that should result only in intended target be hit but who lives in Bill of Rights – deficient Massachusetts, is the perfect compromise between these two trends. Such compromise already happened once before in US history, in 1930th
@Toucan Sam, I believe this is may be comment #97. We should reach at least 100.
Toucan Sam: you got to define “gun control”. If I’m in control of my gun I’m definitely going ti hit my target. As Obama used to say if you like hitting your target you can keep hitting your target 🙂
@Craig – I think you have a serious misconception regarding relationship between ATC and a pilot.
Pilot is the ultimate and final decision maker. He can (and is expected) to override anything ATC tells him to do if he considers it to be necessary for flight safety. (In fact, even advisories from on-board computer systems such as TCAS override ATC!) ATC may, post-factum, report this to FAA, and FAA will investigate, and if the pilot is found to have done that recklessly or without justification his qualifications may be challenged.
And, yes, anyone who flew for a few years had occasions to do exactly that – though usually by asking ATC to reconsider – situations like that usually arise due to a controller’s error or some miscommunication. The pilots are explicitly taught not to obey ATC instructions unquestionably.
Thanks @averros – I am a pilot too! In fact I was able to meet our wonderful blog host ever so briefly at our Hangar at Hanscom AFB before he moved to Florida and left us to deal with this 2F weather. No engine oil heaters for him!
> When Americans are presented with a choice between freedom and safety it seems that the majority will choose [the illusion of] safety […]
It is strange that in the 1960s students on the left protested for freedom and individualism, but now these protests have disappeared completely. They come from the working class, like from the truckers in Canada:
And conservatives like Trump and Musk support them.
Wonder how many airmen is commenting on philg blog?…
Comment 100!!!!! Now all of us readers shall meet at a gun range in Florida in honor of this glorious day.
what about international readers of the blog! 😉
but there is always my son’s nerf gun!! 😀
Flying my self from an unfree state to Florida this spring. If there is a Greenspun guns and planes flyin scheduled sign me up.
Comments are closed.