Saturday, February 27, 2021

J and J's vaccine, actually manufactured by the anthrax vaccine mfr, gets green light from FDA advisors

Yesterday, Feb 26, the FDA's vaccine advisory committee (VRBPAC) met to give its assent to the third Covid vaccine candidate applying for an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA). And I spent another day listening in. FDA is expected to authorize use of the vaccine today.

This one requires only one dose.  For now.  The company is doing a clinical trial of two doses and they could be recommended in future. The VRBPAC committee comments were lackluster.  The members had little to go on.  There is no adenovirus vaccine in civilian use in the US, just as there were no mRNA vaccines.  The committee members simply don't know what they have to watch out for.  One admitted it, and asked if FDA would assist and suggest what types of issues the newly licensed Ebola adenovirus vaccine or the military adenovirus vaccine had faced.  FDA responded with stony silence. Clearly this "advisory" meeting was only needed for its rubber stamp.

Most of the sponsor's (Johnson and Johnson) presenters were from the Janssen division, based in Belgium. Many of the FDA's presenters were non-native English speakers. The combination of an audio transmission that kept dropping out, and inability to catch many of the words made it a challenge to fully grasp the presentations. Was this intended?

FDA has refused to inspect the Covid vaccine manufacturing plants before they are "authorized" under EUA.  I suspect FDA administrators were directed not to slow the warp speed down.  

FDA will have to inspect the factories by law before Covid vaccines are fully licensed, but it seems that the game plan is to get the country vaccinated before adequate data become available and licensure can take place.

The CDC advisory committee has an emergency meeting scheduled for this Sunday and Monday (Feb 28 and March 1), presumably to give their blessing to the vaccine and recommend which demographics will get it first. 

While Johnson and Johnson's Janssen division designed and tested this new adenovirus vectored spike protein vaccine, the vaccine is actually being produced in a factory newly taken out of mothballs, with hundreds of new employees, that has never before produced a vaccine for mass use.  It is owned by Emergent BioSolutions, a company notorious for poisoning soldiers with its anthrax vaccine, which has failed multiple anthrax vaccine inspections.  On Emergent BioSolutions' board is Kathryn Zoon, a former head of FDA's Center for Biologics, which regulates vaccines.

This factory's vaccine may not be exactly the same vaccine that about 20,000 subjects in the clinical trial have received. Usually vaccines for clinical trials are made in a pilot plant under stringent conditions.  

Four million doses of the vaccine are ready to go out the door, with 100 million more promised through June. None of the committee members thought to ask FDA anything about the manufacturing arrangement.

Does the vaccine work?  The vaccine is said to be 66% effective against moderate to severe disease in the trials, and 100% protective against death.  In the clinical trials, having a headache and a cough was enough to put subjects in the "moderate to severe" category.  Like the two mRNA vaccines, the vaccine sponsors apparently did not see fit to test whether their vaccines block infection and transmission in humans. This is the fault of the FDA, which sets the standard for the data needed to obtain an EUA.

Does it work against the South African strain?  Reportedly almost as well as against the standard strain, but J and J is taking no chances.  It is working on a new vaccine to combat newer variants, and Marion Gruber of FDA promised the committee yesterday that newer versions can zoom past FDA regulators with just a modicum of data.

Is it safe?  What was the placebo?  After a discussion, J and J's lead corrected himself and said it was simply saline.  The reported adverse events were practically identical between the saline placebo and the vaccine.  Only hives, ringing in the ears (which eventually resolved) and a small number of blood clots were considered possible vaccine side effects.  I have a hard time believing saline caused all those local (and systemic) effects. Only a subset of the subjects in the trials were evaluated for side effects.  Why was that?  

I can't tell if this vaccine is safe and I doubt anyone else can, either. Nor do I want to be injected with something manufactured by the anthrax vaccine manufacturer, famed for injuring thousands of soldiers twenty years ago, while making 300% profit margins.

Americans either love or hate the Covid vaccines.  The term vaccine seems to give them a luster they probably don't deserve.  How many Americans understand they are all experimental, unlicensed products, only permitted for use under an "Emergency Use Authorization" rule that require a minimum standard of evidence?  The law simply says that in order to receive an authorization, 

"the known and potential benefits of the product, when used to diagnose, prevent, or treat such disease or condition, outweigh the known and potential risks of the product, taking into consideration the material threat posed by the agent or agents identified in a declaration under subsection (b)(1)(D), if applicable

So, the more its sponsor knows about adverse effects, the more trouble the vaccine is likely to have getting its EUA.  Accordingly, it is better for the adverse effects to be as unknown as possible.

Adenoviruses are double-stranded DNA viruses.  So instead of mRNA, DNA coding for the spike protein has been inserted into an adenovirus.  The virus will enter human cells and its DNA will enter the cell nucleus, which will then produce mRNA, and just like with the mRNA vaccines, our own cells will make spike proteins.  For how long?  

Subjects vaccinated with this vaccine developed increasing immunity over a prolonged period, suggesting that spike protein might be made for a long period of time. We don't know for how long, nor how much is too much.  But there are definite concerns about how spike proteins can potentially harm us, and how they may prime us for autoimmune reactions to either a Covid infection or to later doses of vaccine.

Are we guinea pigs?  The EUA legislation specifies that recipients must be given considerably more information than is provided with other vaccines. I have included the language below.  Still, I wonder how many recipients understand that they are part of a vast experiment, with the potential to cause very serious consequences?

(ii)Appropriate conditions designed to ensure that individuals to whom the product is administered are informed—

(I)
that the Secretary [of HHS] has authorized the emergency use of the product;
(II)
of the significant known and potential benefits and risks of such use, and of the extent to which such benefits and risks are unknown; and

(III)
of the option to accept or refuse administration of the product, of the consequences, if any, of refusing administration of the product, and of the alternatives to the product that are available and of their benefits and risks.
UPDATE Feb 27:  Yes, FDA has authorized this vaccine and President Biden says the USG will pull out all the stops to manufacture as much as possible.

Thursday, February 25, 2021

NY Times tries to scare us on new mutations while cases drop drastically

The NY Times would have us believe New York has a new, dangerous mutation.  It has been there since November and has been found in 4 boroughs and Westchester. The vaccines may not work as well against this mutation:

"A New Coronavirus Variant Is Spreading in New York, Researchers Report

"...several studies have now shown that variants containing the E484K mutation are less susceptible to the vaccines than was the original form of the virus. The mutation interferes with the activity of a class of antibodies that nearly everyone makes, Dr. Nussenzweig said.

“People who have recovered from the coronavirus or who have been vaccinated are very likely to be able to fight this variant off, there’s no doubt about that,” he said. But “they may get a little bit sick from it.”'

Be afraid, be very afraid. 

Until you actually look at the statistics to find that despite whatever mutations the experts can find, things in New York state are going extremely well regarding Covid, according to data assembled by the CovidTracking Project, below.  Despite all the mutations that may be circulating, just look:  cases, hospitalizations and deaths are rapidly dropping.  Ignore the hype.


Simple, cheap supplements and drugs that are more effective in clinical trials than vaccines for Covid-19

Please go to Dr. Zev Zelenko's website for simple protocols that can save your life from Covid, or at least reduce the severity of the disease.

https://www.vladimirzelenkomd.com/so/d9NVPLNOO

Drug used to treat lice and scabies (Ivermectin) could cut Covid deaths by up to 75%, research suggests/ Daily Mail

 https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-9297449/Drug-used-treat-lice-scabies-drug-cut-Covid-deaths-75-research-suggests.html

A cheap and safe drug widely used against parasites cuts Covid infections, hospitalisations and deaths by about 75 per cent, a study shows.

More than 30 trials across the world found that ivermectin causes ‘repeated, consistent, large magnitude improvements in clinical outcomes’ at all stages of the disease.

The peer-reviewed study, to be published in the US journal Frontiers of Pharmacology, says the evidence is so strong that the drug – used to treat head lice and scabies – should become a standard therapy everywhere, so hastening the global recovery. 

Study co-author Professor Paul Marik, director of emergency and pulmonary care at the Eastern Virginia Medical School in the US, said: ‘The data is overwhelming – we are in a pandemic, and this is an incredibly effective way to combat it. If we use ivermectin widely, our societies can open up.’

More than 30 trials across the world found that ivermectin causes ¿repeated, consistent, large magnitude improvements in clinical outcomes¿ at all stages of the disease (stock image)

More than 30 trials across the world found that ivermectin causes ‘repeated, consistent, large magnitude improvements in clinical outcomes’ at all stages of the disease (stock image)

Other medications have been touted as effective treatments for combating coronavirus, only for trials to dash hopes – notably with hydroxychloroquine, the anti-malarial drug. 

An earlier study by Professor Andrew Hill of Liverpool University also concluded that ivermectin cuts death rates by around three-quarters. 

Dr Tess Lawrie, director of the Evidence-Based Medicine Consultancy in Bath, convened an online summit of international experts last weekend to discuss the new data. It included evidence that widespread use of ivermectin in parts of India and South America has led to a big reduction in infections and deaths.

The peer-reviewed study, to be published in the US journal Frontiers of Pharmacology, says the evidence is so strong that the drug ¿ used to treat head lice and scabies ¿ should become a standard therapy everywhere, so hastening the global recovery (file image)

The peer-reviewed study, to be published in the US journal Frontiers of Pharmacology, says the evidence is so strong that the drug – used to treat head lice and scabies – should become a standard therapy everywhere, so hastening the global recovery (file image)

Yesterday Dr Lawrie submitted a 97-page report to the World Health Organisation, urging it immediately to recommend ivermectin to treat Covid. 

The drug, taken in tablet form or as drops, is licensed in Britain only as a treatment for parasitic worms, head lice and scabies.

It has been used by hundreds of millions of patients over the past 30 years, mainly in developing countries, and at around £50 per patient – less in some countries – is far cheaper than other new Covid treatments, such as the rheumatism drug tocilizumab, which costs £1,000 per patient.

The UK’s Medicines and Healthcare Regulatory Agency said it was aware of the global study into the use of ivermectin to treat Covid-19 and that its evidence would be reviewed.

Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Federal law prohibits employers and others from requiring vaccination under an EUA/Stat News

https://www.statnews.com/2021/02/23/federal-law-prohibits-employers-and-others-from-requiring-vaccination-with-a-covid-19-vaccine-distributed-under-an-eua/

Ever since the Food and Drug Administration granted emergency use authorization for two new vaccines, employers, schools, and other organizations are grappling with whether to require Covid-19 vaccination.

While organizations are certainly free to encourage their employees, students, and other members to be vaccinated, federal law provides that, at least until the vaccine is licensed, individuals must have the option to accept or decline to be vaccinated.

Knowing what an organization can or cannot do with respect to Covid-19 vaccines can help them keep their employees, students, and members safe and also save the them from costly and time-consuming litigation.

Much remains unknown about the safety and efficacy of the vaccine

Even though the FDA granted emergency use authorizations for the Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna vaccines in December 2020, the clinical trials the FDA will rely upon to ultimately decide whether to license these vaccines are still underway and are designed to last for approximately two years to collect adequate data to establish if these vaccines are safe and effective enough for the FDA to license.

The abbreviated timelines for the emergency use applications and authorizations means there is much the FDA does not know about these products even as it authorizes them for emergency use, including their effectiveness against asymptomatic infection, death, and transmission of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes the disease.

Given the uncertainty about the two vaccines, their EUAs are explicit that each is “an investigational vaccine not licensed for any indication” and require that all “promotional material relating to the Covid-19 Vaccine clearly and conspicuously … state that this product has not been approved or licensed by the FDA, but has been authorized for emergency use by FDA” (emphasis added).

EUAs are clear: Getting these vaccines is voluntary

The same section of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act that authorizes the FDA to grant emergency use authorization also requires the secretary of Health and Human Services to “ensure that individuals to whom the product is administered are informed … of the option to accept or refuse administration of the product.”

Likewise, the FDA’s guidance on emergency use authorization of medical products requires the FDA to “ensure that recipients are informed to the extent practicable given the applicable circumstances … That they have the option to accept or refuse the EUA product …”

In the same vein, when Dr. Amanda Cohn, the executive secretary of the CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, was asked if Covid-19 vaccination can be required, she responded that under an EUA, “vaccines are not allowed to be mandatory. So, early in this vaccination phase, individuals will have to be consented and they won’t be able to be mandatory.” Cohn later affirmed that this prohibition on requiring the vaccines applies to organizations, including hospitals.

The EUAs for both the Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna vaccines require facts sheets to be given to vaccination providers and recipients. These fact sheets make clear that getting the vaccine is optional. For example, the one for recipients states that, “It is your choice to receive or not receive the Covid-19 Vaccine,” and if “you decide to not receive it, it will not change your standard of medical care.”

What this means in practice

When the FDA grants emergency use authorization for a vaccine, many questions about the product cannot be answered. Given the open questions, when Congress granted the authority to issue EUAs, it chose to require that every individual should be allowed to decide for himself or herself whether or not to receive an EUA product. The FDA and CDC apparently consider this fundamental requirement of choice important enough that even during the height of the Covid-19 pandemic they reinforced that policy decision when issuing their guidance related to the Covid-19 vaccines.

This means that an organization will likely be at odds with federal law if it requires its employees, students or other members to get a Covid-19 vaccine that is being distributed under emergency use authorization.

State law often prohibits retaliating against an employee for refusing to participate in a violation of federal law. Organizations that require Covid-19 vaccination in violation of federal law may face lawsuits under these state laws not only to block the policy but also for damages and attorneys’ fees. Such potentially costly lawsuits can be avoided by refraining from adopting policies that require vaccination or penalize members for choosing not to be vaccinated.

Organizations are free to encourage vaccinations through internal communications, through educational events, and through other measures to urge employees to be vaccinated. They can take these measures so long as: (1) they are not viewed as coercive, (2) the organization makes clear the decision regarding whether to receive the vaccine is voluntary, and (3) the measures comply with the requirements in the EUAs and the related regulations for these products.

People across the world have had their lives upended during the last year. The urgency to return to normalcy is felt deeply by many. As decision-makers at organizations decide on their Covid-19 vaccination policy, they should be careful to not let this passion lead the organization to run afoul of the law.

Aaron Siri is the managing partner at Siri & Glimstad LLP, a complex civil litigation firm with its principal office in New York City. This article is not intended to provide legal advice but to offer broad and general information about the law.

Saturday, February 20, 2021

Can employers mandate Covid vaccinations?

The 2 Covid vaccines currently available in the US are experimental unlicensed products. As such, they cannot be mandated.  The Nuremberg Code and subsequent laws guarantee your right to choose whether to be an experimental subject.  Although it may advantage some entities to have you think otherwise, an experimental product is an experimental product. These vaccines have not been approved by the FDA, they are unlicensed, and so they are experimental. And therefore you cannot be forced to be injected with an experimental product. Legally, no coercion may be applied. You have the right to informed consent.

The vaccines were "authorized" under emergency laws that require limited data.  The Johnson and Johnson vaccine will be coming up for a similar authorization, not a license, this coming week.  Once authorized, it too will be an experimental product. These products are given Emergency Use Authorizations (EUAs) by FDA, and the clinical trials for each vaccine are ongoing.

You have not seen the federal government, nor any state mandate these vaccines for schoolchildren, healthcare workers or anyone else.  That is because the government knows that legally, it cannot impose mandates that turn all citizens into guinea pigs:  the government would almost certainly lose when challenged in the courts. Not to mention, the highest authorities probably don't want them for their own families.

What the federal government did instead is underhanded.  It hid behind corporate skirts. Its Equal Employment Opportunity Commission issued a statement that essentially invited corporations to mandate the Covid vaccines, by stating that EEOC had no problem with such a mandate.

I and many others think that employer mandates will be found to be illegal, if challenged.  Del Bigtree and his legal affiliate ICAN are assisting employees in fighting such attempted mandates.  

I was involved with the only case to test whether a military anthrax vaccine authorized under an EUA could be mandated.  The 2005 case (Doe v Rumsfeld) was heard in First District Court, in DC, by Judge Emmet Sullivan, who is still on the bench.  He ruled that under federal law, an EUA vaccine cannot be mandated. 

I am told that the military is being very careful with the Covid vaccines, and soldiers are signing informed consents if they choose to receive the vaccine.  Many are refusing. Are civilians being given full information about the knowns and unknowns of these vaccines, and signing consent forms?

When we seem to be approaching herd immunity, why use mandates?  Because mandates sell more vaccines.  Is Pharma calling the shots?

Today I was informed the Vatican has threatened to fire its unvaccinated employees. Do you think the Vatican will issue religious exemptions? I cannot comment on the European situation, which differs from country to country. Indonesia seems to be the only country, at this point, to have issued a Covid vaccine requirement, punishable by fine.

UPDATE Feb. 21:  The Financial Times reported that the UK is following the US scheme to encourage private companies to issue vaccine mandates and have them deal with the legal repercussions:

"Boris Johnson, prime minister, has said the government will not introduce domestic vaccine passports — an idea that raises many moral and legal issues — but on Tuesday Nadhim Zahawi, vaccines minister, acknowledged that some companies might press ahead with their own schemes."

UPDATE Feb 22: The Vatican has backed off its assertion that unvaccinated employees could be fired.

Once the Covid vaccines are fully approved by FDA, they will be subject to different laws.  While I believe that the right to informed consent for medical procedures, the right to bodily autonomy, and the right to not be discriminated against on the basis of one's medical choices exist, other laws have been passed that have allowed the imposition of vaccine mandates to attend school and for certain employment.  In all but 5 states, religious exemptions for schoolchildren may be used, and the EEOC enforces religious exemptions for employees under most conditions.  My understanding (but I am not a lawyer) is that these apparently contradictory laws have yet to be litigated in a way that resolves the contradictions.

UPDATE Feb. 24:  The Spanish regional government of Galicia is about to have the legislature vote on a Covid vaccine mandate, with fines for noncompliance of 1,000 to 60,000 Euros.

Over and over, we have been hoaxed

It is difficult for me to believe that two thirds of the US (according to a Harris poll) are favorably inclined to the pharmaceutical industry, up 30 percentage points since January 2020, just before the pandemic. Do you believe it?

Who do you trust:  Common sense, or the media's experts?

Surely most Americans have by now figured out that almost everything they are being told about Covid by the experts, the government and the media is untrue?  Haven't they noticed how the stories change with the wind?  That most of them simply make no sense?

Masking

Wear no mask--one mask--two masks--oh, and add some pantyhose to get that tight fit someone over at CDC just decided was de rigeur.  Do any of these 4 choices provide reliable protection?  Do people really believe that Fauci and CDC are calibrating their advice to the newest scientific findings? CDC reviewed the mask research back in 2014, after it badly bungled its PPE recommendations for Ebola.  I discussed CDC's many flip-flops regarding droplets and aerosol spread in 2014.  Within about 10 days, CDC issued 3 different posters, consecutively, about how far Ebola might travel through the air, eventually expanding from 3 to 6 feet.  The NY Post published two articles on these flip-flops, mentioning me. It is funny but it is tragic.  If CDC hadn't pulled that 6' distance out of thin air, would we be social distancing like this?

CDC's 6' 'social distance' is designed to make you think CDC is earning its budget and established a way to protect you from the virus. But there is no effective distance if you are indoors along with sufficient aerosolized virus.  WHO says 3 feet is enough. But if CDC used 3 feet, kids could all go back to school, then parents could go back to work, then the economy could restart. And someone doesn't want that happening. CDC just released its long-awaited guidance on reopening schools.  But CNBC says following it would keep 90% of schools at least partially closed.  Who's fooling who? 

Viral mutations a.k.a. variants

New viral variants are coming, so be afraid.  Oh, they are already here.  Oh, they have been here since at least October.  They are not more lethal, just more infectious. Be less afraid.  But they do reduce vaccine and antibody effectiveness.  Get ready for more vaccines. Rush out and get your vaccination now, there is a shortage.  

In many businesses, nursing homes and hospitals, employees are being threatened with job loss to stimulate vaccine uptake. Why are people who already had Covid being given the shots, when they cannot do any good, and might even put the recipients at greater risk for immune-mediated, vaccine-induced harm?  Why has CDC covered this up, and lied about it?

Why the rush to vaccinate the elderly when new vaccines will supposedly be needed for the new variants?  And the elderly seem to be expiring at high rates post-vaccination. And we don't even know the vaccine's efficacy in the frail elderly, who were never tested in the clinical trials. Nor do we know the vaccine's safety in this group. Many vaccines fail to stimulate immunity in the elderly, and some vaccines have even made the recipient more susceptible to the diseases they were supposed to prevent. Where is the proof the Covid vaccines aren't doing the same thing, or doing it in older age groups?

And why in heaven's name are the media, government and industry pushing out the same story about the frightening mutants, when there is very little evidence to support the scare? For example, the Financial Times titled a Feb 5 story, "Britain Risks Becoming Virus Melting Pot as Mutations Spread." Yet the BMJ tells us that deaths, hospitalizations and cases have been falling dramatically in the UK over the past month, similar to the US.

From the 2/20/2021 LA Times, "Dr. Monica Gandhi, an infectious disease specialist, put it simply: “Try not to worry about the variants.”'

Chlorquine and its cousin hydroxychloroquine:  sinking the magic bullet 

Chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine are licensed generic drugs, which any US doctor is free to prescribe off label for any valid reason, with patient acquiescence. I routinely prescribe hydroxychloroquine for lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, Lyme disease and now Covid.  I have found it to be very safe, and estimate I have used it in 200 patients. In 2005, the Virology Journal published an article that said chloroquine killed SARS-1 coronavirus in tissue culture. In fact, CDC scientists did the experiment and wrote the article.  Here is their final paragraph:

Conclusion

Chloroquine, a relatively safe, effective and cheap drug used for treating many human diseases including malaria, amoebiosis and human immunodeficiency virus is effective in inhibiting the infection and spread of SARS CoV in cell culture. The fact that the drug has significant inhibitory antiviral effect when the susceptible cells were treated either prior to or after infection suggests a possible prophylactic and therapeutic use.

Then suddenly Chloroquine drugs were too dangerous to use, more likely to kill you than coronavirus. What happened? A lot more than Trumps's praise.

Two very terrible things happened. Two deadly medical frauds. The fact that Trump recommended the chloroquines was only a sideshow, used to confuse those who were not paying close attention.

A number of clinical trials were set up to force hydroxychloroquine to fail in treating Covid.  The more benign of these trials simply used the drug too late, after virus was no longer multiplying in the body.  This happens about a week after the onset of symptoms.  At that point you need steroids, blood thinners and other medications to combat the downstream, autoimmune effects of the virus.  Trying to kill the virus (when there is no intact virus) doesn't work at that point.  The drug appears to be ineffective, but had it been given a week earlier, its efficacy would have been obvious to all.

The more malignant of these trials set out to poison patients with potentially lethal doses of hydroxychloroquine.  Largest among these trials were Recovery (sponsored by the UK government, Oxford University, Gates Foundation and the Wellcome Trust, among others) and Solidarity (sponsored by the WHO, Gates Foundation, and others). I have delved deeply into the dosing here.  In the hydroxychloroquine arm of the Recovery trial over 25% of the subjects died:  396 people.  The Solidarity hydroxychloroquine trial had similar results--and shut down 3 days after I warned WHO officials that their failure to disclose to subjects they were being given a known, potentially lethal treatment dose left the WHO liable for damages. 

Yet despite using poisonous doses, these trials continue to be cited as evidence of the dangerousness and lack of efficacy of hydroxychloroquine, even by otherwise highly capable scientists who simply failed to pay attention to the doses used.

The second terrible thing that tanked the use of chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine was a fabricated journal article in the Lancet published May 22, 2020.  The article purported to have access to a phenomenal realtime database, with information from over 600 hospitals on 6 continents, including both medical and financial records in many different languages.  Had any editor every heard of such a database previously?  Of course not, because nothing like it exists.  But a Harvard professor was the paper's first author, the paper supposedly sailed through peer review, and a massive media blitz sounded forth on the day of publication. The blitz announced to almost everyone in the world listening to radio or television that day that hydroxychloroquine and its cousin chloroquine kill Covid patients.  Here is an example.

Two weeks later the Lancet paper was exposed as a "monumental fraud" and retracted, and then Lancet editor Richard Horton admitted to the NY Times that the paper and its global database were a fabrication. But the damage was done.  The damage had been planned and executed like clockwork. No one has admitted any responsiblity nor explained how the publication came to be written and published, nor who orchestrated and paid for the massive media blitz. Most people heard about the drug's danger, but never heard about the paper's fabrication.

Deaths, cases, hospitalizations:  can any of these numbers be trusted?

Alexis Madrigal, a journalist for The Atlantic, co-founded the Covid Tracking Project last March because of the totally inadequate data being released by the states and CDC. It quickly became the go-to site for data on Covid, better than federal data or another site sponsored by Johns Hopkins.  On a shoestring at first, this team put together an amazingly good data collection, independently culling from the states and municipalities, because that was what needed to be done.

However, significant data accuracy problems remained, and persist to the present.  The problem is that we do not have reliable tests for Covid in the US, which I have previously detailed.  We don't have normal, useful case definitions. We have numbers, but we don't know how accurate they are.  We have no idea what the false positive and false negative rates are of the tests we are using to diagnose Covid.  FDA has not approved and licensed a single PCR, antibody or rapid antigen test for Covid yet.  All were "authorized" under emergency regulations. There are over 300 tests authorized for use in the US currently, and FDA has not managed to establish their validity. FDA has gotten as far as listing a "limit of detection" for some of the tests, but not all of them. While FDA warned about false positive antigen tests in November, the public and professionals have never been informed of the false positive and false negative rates of any of the Covid tests.

One positive PCR test makes you a 'confirmed' case, regardless of symptoms.  One positive rapid antigen test makes you a 'probable' case.  But since last April 14, CDC has been recoding what the states called probable cases and deaths, as definite cases and deaths. And some states have been changing their protocols and methods regarding what constitutes a death due to Covid, for example Iowa

Yet FDA and CDC are well aware of high false positive rates on the PCR tests due to excessively high cycle thresholds. Fauci admitted it in July. The NY Times ran a detailed expose of the problem back in August. The WHO warned about this in December and January, noting both the need to dial the cycle thresholds down, and suggesting the need to perform confirmatory testing when the patient lacked symptoms consistent with Covid.  But that has never been standard procedure in the US.  It seems to me that the federal agencies have been doing their best to maximize case and death numbers. This helped strengthen the narrative that we had something so dire to fear that it was worth wrecking the economy and locking us up to slow it down. 

Public health officials suddenly jumping ship--Why?

Now I am wondering why such a huge number of public health officials quit their jobs or were fired since the start of the pandemic. "An investigation by The Associated Press and KHN found that at least 181 state and local public health leaders in 38 states have resigned, retired or been fired since the beginning of the pandemic, the largest exodus of public health leaders in U.S. history."

"In some cases, officials resign after clashing with government officials and elected leaders... In other states, officials are fired for reporting or data issues."

Iowa's former public health director is suing the state.  So is the department's former spokesperson, who claims she was ousted for complying with Iowa's open records law to provide journalists information on Covid. She also blew the whistle that an Emergency Operations Center was created, with new email addresses, and its emails were concealed from public records requesters.  

Did other public health officials refuse to lie or to withhold information, and is that why they are gone?

Is the vaccine saving the day?  

According to the BMJ, not so fast.  While deaths and cases have been dropping like a stone since mid January, the drop may be comparable in the young unvaccinated population as in the older age groups, 1/3 of whom have received at least one shot. BMJ noted:

"the fall in prevalence was similar among those aged 65 years and over compared with other age groups. The study authors from Imperial College London said this suggests that if vaccines are effective at reducing transmission as well as disease, this effect is not yet a major driver of prevalence trends. Therefore, the observed falls described here are most likely because of reduced social interactions during lockdown."

Are we approaching herd immunity? 

In the US, about 40 million people are reported to have received at least one Covid vaccine dose.  That is about 12% of the population.  I've no idea how many got so sick from the first dose that they refused the second, while I am hearing anecdotes that many have.  How much immunity will a single dose provide?

The LA Times today and the Wall Street Journal several days ago, in an Op-Ed by Marty Makary, MD, suggested we are fast approaching herd immunity.  New cases are down 75% in just over a month.  (But that could have been helped by dialing down those pesky cycle thresholds, and performing 30% fewer tests than in mid January.)

No one was allowed to talk about herd immunity until after Covid vaccines rolled out.  Has everyone who wanted a shot already been served? Why is herd immunity back on the table? I'm very glad it is, because achieving herd immunity will end all lockdown excuses. Hopefully we are at the end of the big waves.

Why am I rehashing issues I have already written about?

Because each issue is an example of how the public has been fooled by the experts, the media and the government,  all three dissembling in concert. If I'm correct, we are facing a pernicious conspiracy.

Who really trusts Big Pharma today?  You'd need to be mad to trust the industry that throttled drugs that work against Covid, in order to inject you with new concoctions that tickled Tony Fauci's fancy and pay royalties to his institute.  Who trusts government pronouncements?  Media?  Our bought experts? The corporations and 'charitable' foundations that bought them?

Today I just wanted to make a little list, short enough for a blog post, as a reminder that we have been hoaxed and played, over and over again.  

My advice?  Listen to your common sense, and turn off the TV and radio.  Don't let the propaganda get access to even your unconscious mind.  Help others dissect what is going on.  Stay strong.  There are lots of quiet, sensible people out there.  Speak your truth.  Let's find each other and turn this around.

UPDATE Feb. 23:  Someone must have decided that the LA Times article from 3 days ago, which suggested the new coronavirus variants were not so terrible, needed to be squelched with a new story.

Today's story is that California now has its very own new Covid variant, more infectious than the old one, and all that jazz. It's been there since September.  Be afraid. Be very afraid. 

On Feb. 24 the Washington Post tells us

"A variant that has been circulating in California has become dominant and now comprises more than half of the infections in 44 of the state's 58 counties, new research says from scientists who believe this version of the virus should be declared a “variant of concern warranting urgent follow-up investigation.”

Except here is the truth about California and Covid:  cases have dropped amazingly since January 15, from over 42,000/day to yesterday, Feb. 22, with only 5,750 new cases/day.  Both these numbers are 7 day averages, so the current case number is even lower.  

California is now diagnosing only about 10% as many cases as it did 6 weeks ago.  The new mutation, which is now dominant in most of California, is associated with a 90% improvement in new case numbers!  There were over 52,000 new California cases diagnosed on January 9, and there were under 5,000 today. 

The media, the experts and the government have been playing you again. Thanks for the dramatic example, LA Times and Washington Post.

UPDATE February 26:  Today CDC announced that cases have started rising and we are not out of the woods.  I checked and as I suspected, 3 days ago the number of Covid tests being run daily shot up, guaranteeing more cases as well as more false positives. Is CDC calibrating the fear factor? Seeking more takers for the new J and J vaccine?

Wednesday, February 17, 2021

University of Vermont found that those who wore masks had more infections, more contacts

 http://www.med.uvm.edu/vaccinetestingcenter/news/2021/01/19/van_den_broek-altenburg_colleagues_report_that_without_messaging_masks_could_lead_to_more_covid-19_spread

Study Warns Mask Mandate Without Education May Raise COVID-19 Spread

January 19, 2021 by Jeff Wakefield

Church Street Marketplace in Burlington, Vt. (Photo: Sally McCay, University of Vermont)

A novel new study suggests that the behavior public officials are now mandating or recommending unequivocally to slow the spread of surging COVID-19--wearing a face covering--should come with a caveat. If not accompanied by proper public education, the practice could lead to more infections.

The finding is part of a unique study, published in JMIR Public Health and Surveillance, that was conducted by a team of health economists and public health faculty at the University of Vermont's Larner College of Medicine in partnership with public health officials for the state of Vermont.

The study combines survey data gathered from adults living in northwestern Vermont with test results that showed whether a subset of them had contracted COVID-19, a dual research approach that few COVID studies have employed. By correlating the two data sets, researchers were able to determine what behaviors and circumstances increased respondents' risk of becoming sick.

The key risk factor driving transmission of the disease, the study found, was the number of daily contacts participants had with other adults and seniors.

That had relevance for two other findings.

Those who wore masks had more of these daily contacts compared with those who didn't, and a higher proportion contracted the virus as a result...