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2 min read
01 Oct

About being late to the party, and other issues raised by readers about today's "Anthony Fauci, Warmup Dictator" piece

Matt Taibbi

The piece published earlier today, “Anthony Fauci Was America’s Warmup Dictator,” prompted a few hot texts and comments that deserve responses. A common theme is that I need to own being late to the topic.

 It’s true. Fauci, Covid, and treatment of people like fired podcaster Alison Morrow and censored Drs. Martin Kulldorff, Jay Bhattacharya, and Aaron Kheriaty are on my conscience. Intimidated by the science, I decided early to sidestep pandemic stories, and as a result blew off people who could have used support. Bari Weiss and Michael Shellenberger were the ones who knew to look up Jay’s name in the Twitter Files. Their focus on Covid turned out to be key in spotting the worst mischief in those documents, because so many pandemic-related removals were based on narrative rather than factual transgressions. Suppression of posts supposedly encouraging “vaccine hesitancy” created the template for true political censorship. This was the moment when platforms and government agencies learned to punish based not on what was written, but the state of mind of the writer, a next-level dystopian technique. 

I had to start over to get through jargon-laden texts like the Slack chats of the “Proximal Origin” authors. Going back through pandemic chronology was embarrassing — I can’t believe how much I missed in real time — but also drove home how much olé journalism went on among people who supposedly covered the story every day. There was close to zero meaningful pushback in the early months to public messaging on a slew of issues like natural immunity, age-specific risk, and especially the monstrous infection mortality rate error that sent the country into a panic from which it still hasn’t really recovered: 

So, yes, there was an awful lot that anyone paying even minimal attention should have known then, but many official deceptions are also only becoming clear now. An example is this past week’s Public/Racket story about Fauci’s “big tour” promoting zoonotic origin to the CIA, State Department, and White House.

 Even though emails show Fauci was intimately involved with crafting the “Proximal Origin of SARS-CoV-2” paper, and one source told us this week that Fauci might even have brought one of the paper’s authors with him in those official briefings, he pretended not to know their names in an April 17, 2020 press conference touting their findings. “I don’t have the authors right now,” he said, when he insisted “highly qualified evolutionary virologists” determined the data on Covid was “totally consistent with a jump of a species from an animal to a human.” 

We didn’t find out until late July of this year that the “Proximal Origin” authors were exchanging thoughts like “I’m still not fully convinced that no culture was involved,” and “we also can’t fully rule out engineering” up until April 16th of that year, i.e. the day before that April 17 press conference above. That adds a brand new extreme-cringe factor to a video you’ve probably seen before. 

It’s one thing to have an “evolving” take on mask efficacy, and another to tell a lie or two to scare people into getting a shot. Bullying bad research into existence and pretending in perfect TV deadpan not to know the names of the researchers, all while hyping a bogus paper you helped create, is corruption on a different scale. Add algorithmic suppression of Covid policy critics we now know was going on by then, and you have a story that looks uglier every time you glance in the rearview mirror. So yes, a lot of this is old news, but there are also new dimensions to the Covid debacle popping up every day that need examining, as no one’s come close to finding the bottom of this thing. 

The Lie that started it all.

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