For an excellent demonstration of how not to be a journalist, watch this unhinged
attack by CNN’s John Berman on Peter Navarro, White House trade advisor, forhaving the audacity to disagree with Dr. Fauci on the wisdom of treating COVID-19patients with hydroxychloroquine:
To say that Berman was “biased” rather understates the virulence with which hebadgered, insulted, interrupted and misquoted Navarro, acting less like a reporterthan like a Merck propagandist—which, of course, is what he is.You’ll find the same ferocious deference to Il Fauci in “Trump Again Pushes Drug,Never Mind Expert Opinion,” a brief screed that required the labor of three NewYork Times reporters—Michael Crowley, Katie Thomas and Maggie “Putin Ate MyHomework” Haberman—who evidently needed one another’s help to cut andpaste what the Gray Lady has already published on hydroxychloroquine, the Bad Man who’s said it “may help you to get better” if you have COVID-19, andthe Good Doctor who keeps saying that it may not, and may even do you harm,so nobody should be taking it.
That narrative pervades the “liberal media,” whose war-like partiality to Dr.Fauci’s view has left their audience (trembling) in the dark. Let’s start by start by noting that there’s been a near-total blackout on the FDA’s approvalof hydroxychloroquine for off-label use. That measure—announced a weekago—has been reported only by Fox News and the New York Post, while theNew York Times and all the other “liberal media” have simply blacked it out,despite the FDA’s explicit statement that, while not yet officially approved,hyrdoxychloroquine sulfate “may help you to get better” if you have the virus.(So it wasn’t Trump who used those words, as I mischievously wrote above,but the FDA.)
The Times has been especially careful to avoid reporting the FDA’s revised position. On April 2, three days after the FDA released the”fact sheet” announcing its new stand, the TImes ran a teeny itemat the bottom of p. A6, down in the lefthand corner of the page,entitled “Study Shows Benefit From Malaria Drug.” That wee piece(barely) reported the results of a randomized clinical trial carriedout in Wuhan, demonstrating that the drug “significantly shortened”recovery time for those with COVID-19. Rather than go into suchdetail, the Times piece did include an an enthusiastic response from Dr. William Schaffner, an infectious disease specialist atVanderbilt, offering a view at striking variance with Dr. Fauci’s categorical insistence that there’s nothing there: “It’s going to send a ripple of excitement out through the treating community”—a “ripple” that the Times et al. have taken great pains to deny. https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/2020.03.22.20040758v2https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/01/health/hydroxychloroquine-coronavirus-malaria.htmlThe day after imperceptibly reporting that new Wuhan study, and as if in atonement for it, the Times ran “Touting Cure Brings’Simple Country Doctor’ Cheers, and Doubts,” a long, chillyprofile of Dr. Vladimir Zelenko, who claims to have usedhydrooxychloroquine, axithromycin and zinc sulfate to curehundreds of COVID-19 patients in Kryas Joel, a New Yorkvillage with a Hasidic population. Rather than use that story to suggest that maybe there is something to the promise ofhydroxychloroquine after all—which is to say, that maybe Dr. Fauci has it wrong—the Times’ Kevin Roose and MatthewRosenberg, just following orders, use every grounds tocast the doctor’s story as a “parable” of how, within “ourfragile information ecosystem,” we’re all at risk if we don’tlisten only to the likes of Dr. Fauci, “Bill and Melinda Gates,” and the reporters at the Times: i.e., Those Who Know enoughto save us from the toxic “jumble of facts, falsehoods andviral rumors” swirling miasmatically online. (The Times’own online title to that piece is blunter than the paper version:”Touting Virus Cure, ‘Simple Country Doctor’ Becomes a Right-Wing Star.”)
All that poisoned tripe from “our free press” is based squarely not on science, but on propaganda—especially Dr. Fauci’s lie,which he repeats hypnotically (as winning propaganda always does), that there has been no proper scientific study of hydroxychloroquine to treat COVID-19, that all the claims ofits success are purely “anecdotal.” The watchdogs of ourmedia believe that line because that’s what they’re paid to do,not because they’ve had their teams look into it and see ifDr. Fauci’s right. Doing so would weaken his authority, onwhich (let me speak bluntly) scumbags like John Bermanare dependent—totally and abjectly dependent—for their belligerent certitude in shouting down whoever knowswhat Dr. Fauci doesn’t want the world to know about And so, if they were journalists, John Berman and the restof them would know that, as long ago as Feb. 4, a teamof Chinese doctors reported, in a letter to the editors ofCell Research, that hydroxychloroquine—and the anti-viral drug remdesevir—showed great effectiveness againstthe new coronavirus in vitro. (The letter also ran in Nature.)
And on Feb. 20, the International Journal of AntimicrobialAgents published the results of an open-label, non-randomizedclinical trial of hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin in thetreatment of COVID-19 patients—the work of 18 specialists,headed by Didier Raoult, the eminent French specialist whomMacron’s government has been vigorously smearing, indeference to Big Pharma—as is much of “our free press,”Slate lately calling him “the Trumpian French doctor behindthe chloroquine hype.” This despite Dr. Raoult’s golden reputation: “According to the Thomson Reuters source’Highly Cited Researchers List,’ Raoult is among the mostinfluential researchers in his field [infectious diseases]and his publications are among the 1% most consulted inacademic journals,” we learn from Wikipedia. That Dr.Raoult is not only a far more prolific researcher thanDr. Fauci, but one whose latest research could obstructBig Pharma’s plans, explains why “our free press” reveresthe latter, and either slanders or blacks out the former(whose work has not been mentioned by the New York Times).
And so the evidence that this drug shows effectiveness against thevirus isn’t “anecdotal” after all—which means that Dr. Fauci can’t be trusted, and neither can the Western press that treats him as a sage, and not an instrument of the huge industry that owns them all. That danger is severe—and one that we can only overcome by breakingout of house arrest, and gathering again, as soon as possible.