Expert Pretends She Knew

Dr. Deborah Birx, Anthony Fauci’s righthand fabricator in the Trump administration’s totalitarian overreach squad during the pandemic, has now said in a television interview that she and they knew they “overplayed” the vaccines, which, while they (allegedly) reduce the risk of severe illness, do not significantly reduce either the risk of contracting Covid-19 or the risk of spreading it to others. She further pointed out, against all previous hype (and to the sound of angry silence from Fauci back in the Bat Cave, I’m sure), that “50% of the people who died from the omicron surge were older, vaccinated.” 

Some people, such as Christopher Tremoglie in the Washington Examiner article linked above, have responded to this “revelation” with fury over the tremendous damage to people’s lives, specifically the tens of thousands who lost their jobs due to workplace vaccine mandates with which they did not want to comply. As Tremoglie’s argument implies, reasonably, those employers, including such exalted healthcare entities as the Mayo Clinic, would not have willingly sacrificed the skills of hundreds of qualified employees — during a pandemic, no less — had they not been told by the government health experts that the vaccines were both effective and essential to the restoration of public health. 

Frankly, while I agree with Tremoglie’s outrage from a practical outcomes perspective, I take strong issue with the underlying presumption of the argument, namely that Drs. Birx, Fauci, et al actually knew the vaccines would not achieve their promised goals, but that they deliberately “overplayed” them, i.e., lied about them. I know that is indeed what Birx is saying, to be sure. Essentially, she is, as elite idiots will, incriminating herself by admitting responsibility for the enormous human and economic damage caused by all the vaccine mandates (public and private) without even appreciating the level of harm involved. After all, Dr. Birx, being in the enlightened class, never lost her job, never had to worry about putting food on her table, never had to struggle with fears about her future. If thousands of the little people had such troubles due to her “overplaying” about the vaccines, well, that’s just an interesting point of reflection now, certainly nothing to get all concerned over. It’s not as though she deserves to be treated like a criminal or something, merely because she just admitted to knowingly and intentionally causing extreme material harm and personal hardship to hundreds of thousands of her fellow citizens. I mean, what does being a member of the elite mean, if not that one is forever exempt from such plebian concerns as being held accountable for one’s actions?

If she is telling the truth then, as Tremoglie assumes she is, then yes, she is a monster who truly deserves prison time for the life-destroying fraud she perpetrated by lying about the efficacy of the vaccines, and encouraging private companies and government agencies alike to fire employees who refused vaccination. 

But I don’t believe she is telling the truth about this. That is, I believe she had no idea that the vaccines would not work. I am sure she thought they would. I am sure she believed that people who rejected the vaccines were troglodytes who didn’t care if they were threatening the lives of their neighbors by refusing to get a shot that would protect them both from becoming infected and from spreading the virus. I believe that when she stood on her pedestal, next to Fauci or alone, and reveled in her opportunity to play respected world expert on TV for once in her worthless bureaucratic climber’s life, she actually thought she knew what she was saying, knew the truth about the virus and the vaccines, and knew exactly what would work and how well it would work. I believe that today, having no choice but to concede the reality that everything she and Fauci and the rest of them said was at best wildly speculative, at worst utterly nonsensical, she has made the psychological calculation, as official experts (and their lackeys, the general population) typically do, that the only way to save face is to claim, after the fact, that she actually knew that what she was saying then was false — and of course that she always felt they were “overplaying” that point, against her better judgment. 

To assume that Birx was lying then, but is owning up to it now, is to grant exactly the point that matters to her most, namely that her legitimacy as an expert was never in doubt. No, no, she now insists (and we accept, if we buy her new claim), she knew two years ago that we would be just where we are today. She knew the vaccines would not solve the problem, because they were not really effective in the way one expects a true vaccine to be — and as she herself claimed at the time that these vaccines would be. She was just “overplaying” it then, for public reassurance or something. Or maybe Trump made her do it. 

In any case, the upshot of all this, on my reading of the situation, is that Dr. Birx, knowing that as a member of the administrative elite she is forever immune to accountability or punishment, has made the determination that claiming she lied (“overplayed”) at the public’s expense is easier and more self-justifying than admitting that she was wrong. An expert, in our modern government-approved sense, has no concern for ordinary standards of ethics or decency, let alone for the lives of the worthless nobodies her actions may affect. She is, on the other hand, concerned above all else with preserving the expertise illusion. The lives she ruined are no worry for her, compared to the possible loss of her expert’s infallibility (and the tyrannical authority that rests on it) in the public perception.

Of course the vaccines didn’t really work. Of course the mandates were overplayed and unjustified. Of course masks didn’t prevent illness or the spread of disease. Of course the lockdowns caused far more death and destruction than they prevented. Of course we lost all our freedoms — forever — over the falsehoods of authoritarians and the follies of overconfident busybodies. We know that. The only people who did not know that were the “experts” we were all forced to obey, and the millions who sheepishly bowed before those experts because after a century of compulsory public education, most humans are simply too ignorant and too insecure about their own intellects to judge facts and experience for themselves, as humans used to be expected to do.

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