People line up behind a health care worker at a mobile Coronavirus testing site at the Charles Drew University of Medicine and Science, in Los Angeles on July 22. Photo: AP
health

Misinformation on the virus proving highly contagious

54 Comments
By DAVID KLEPPER

As the world races to find a vaccine and a treatment for COVID-19, there is seemingly no antidote in sight for the burgeoning outbreak of coronavirus conspiracy theories, hoaxes, anti-mask myths and sham cures.

The phenomenon, unfolding largely on social media, escalated this week when President Donald Trump retweeted a false video about an anti-malaria drug being a cure for the virus and it was revealed that Russian intelligence is spreading disinformation about the crisis through English-language websites.

Experts worry the torrent of bad information is dangerously undermining efforts to slow the virus, whose death toll in the U.S. hit 150,000 Wednesday, by far the highest in the world, according to the tally kept by Johns Hopkins University. Over a half-million people have died in the rest of the world.

Hard-hit Florida reported 216 deaths, breaking the single-day record it set a day earlier. And South Carolina’s death toll passed 1,500 this week, more than doubling over the past month.

“It is a real challenge in terms of trying to get the message to the public about what they can really do to protect themselves and what the facts are behind the problem., said Michael Osterholm, head of the University of Minnesota’s Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy.

He said the fear is that “people are putting themselves in harm’s way because they don’t believe the virus is something they have to deal with.”

Rather than fade away in the face of new evidence, the claims have flourished, fed by mixed messages from officials, transmitted by social media, amplified by leaders like Trump and mutating when confronted with contradictory facts.

“You don’t need masks. There is a cure,” Dr. Stella Immanuel promised in a video that promoted hydroxychloroquine. “You don’t need people to be locked down.”

The truth: Federal regulators last month revoked their authorization of the drug as an emergency treatment amid growing evidence it doesn’t work and can have deadly side effects. Even if it were effective, it wouldn’t negate the need for masks and other measures to contain the outbreak.

None of that stopped Trump, who has repeatedly praised the drug, from retweeting the video. Twitter and Facebook began removing the video on Monday for violating policies on COVID-19 misinformation, but it had already been seen more than 20 million times.

Many of the claims in Immanuel’s video are widely disputed by medical experts. She has made even more bizarre pronouncements in the past, saying that cysts, fibroids and some other conditions can be caused by having sex with demons, that McDonald's and Pokemon promote witchcraft, that alien DNA is used in medical treatments, and that half-human “reptilians” work in the government.

Other baseless theories and hoaxes have alleged that the virus isn’t real or that it’s a bioweapon created by the U.S. or its adversaries. One hoax from the outbreak’s early months claimed new 5G towers were spreading the virus through microwaves. Another popular story held that Microsoft founder Bill Gates plans to use COVID-19 vaccines to implant microchips in all 7 billion humans on the planet.

Then there are the political theories — that doctors, journalists and federal officials are conspiring to lie about the threat of the virus to hurt Trump politically.

Social media has amplified the claims and helped believers find each other. The flood of misinformation has posed a challenge for Facebook, Twitter and other platforms, which have found themselves accused of censorship for taking down virus misinformation.

A professionally made 26-minute video that alleges the government's top infectious-disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, manufactured the virus and shipped it to China was watched more than 8 million times before the platforms took action. The video, titled “Plandemic," also warned that masks could make you sick — the false claim Facebook cited when it removed the video down from its site.

Judy Mikovits, the discredited doctor behind “Plandemic,” had been set to appear on the show “America This Week” on the Sinclair Broadcast Group. But the company, which operates TV stations in 81 U.S. markets, canned the segment, saying it was “not appropriate" to air.

This week, U.S. government officials speaking of condition of anonymity cited what they said was a clear link between Russian intelligence and websites with stories designed to spread disinformation on the coronavirus in the West. Russian officials rejected the accusations.

Of all the bizarre and myriad claims about the virus, those regarding masks are proving to be among the most stubborn.

New York City resident Carlos Lopez said he wears a mask when required to do so but doesn’t believe it is necessary.

“They’re politicizing it as a tool,” he said. “I think it’s more to try to get Trump to lose. It’s more a scare tactic.”

He is in the minority. A recent AP/NORC poll found that 3 in 4 Americans — Democrats and Republicans alike — support a national mask mandate.

Still, mask skeptics are a vocal minority and have come together to create social media pages where many false claims about mask safety are shared. Facebook has removed some of the pages — such as the group Unmasking America!, which had nearly 10,000 members — but others remain. A video of a woman attacking a mask display at an Arizona Target received almost 84,000 likes on Twitter.

Early in the pandemic, medical authorities themselves were the source of much confusion regarding masks. In February, officials like the U.S. surgeon general urged Americans not to stockpile masks because they were needed by medical personnel and might not be effective in everyday situations.

Public health officials changed their tune when it became apparent that the virus could spread among people showing no symptoms.

Yet Trump remained reluctant to use a mask, mocked his rival Joe Biden for wearing one and suggested people might be covering their faces just to hurt him politically. He did an abrupt about-face this month, claiming that he had always supported masks — then later retweeted Immanuel's video against masks.

The mixed signals hurt, Fauci acknowledged on an interview with NPR this month.

“The message early on became confusing,” he said.

Many of the claims around masks allege harmful effects, such as blocked oxygen flow or even a greater chance of infection. The claims have been widely debunked by doctors.

Dr. Maitiu O Tuathail of Ireland grew so concerned about mask misinformation he posted an online video of himself comfortably wearing a mask while measuring his oxygen levels. The video has been viewed more than 20 million times.

“While face masks don’t lower your oxygen levels. COVID definitely does,” he warned.

Yet trusted medical authorities are often being dismissed by those who say requiring people to wear masks is a step toward authoritarianism.

“Unless you make a stand, you will be wearing a mask for the rest of your life," tweeted Simon Dolan, a British businessman who has sued the government over its COVID-19 restrictions.

Trump’s reluctant, ambivalent and late embrace of masks hasn’t convinced some of his strongest supporters, who have concocted ever more elaborate theories to explain his change of heart. Some say he was actually speaking in code and doesn’t really support masks.

O Tuathail witnessed just how unshakable COVID-19 misinformation can be when, after broadcasting his video, he received emails from people who said he cheated, or didn’t wear the mask long enough to feel the negative effects.

That’s not surprising, according to University of Central Florida psychology professor Chrysalis Wright, who studies misinformation. She said conspiracy theory believers often engage in mental gymnastics to make their beliefs conform with reality.

“People only want to hear what they already think they know,” she said.

© Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

©2020 GPlusMedia Inc.


54 Comments
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And it all starts at the WH. No leadership and no brains make for a deadly combination in the middle of a crisis.

5 ( +9 / -4 )

Uncomfortable truths unfortunately are at a disadvantage against convenient lies. Specially when the people lying do so repeatedly even after being proved wrong. That unfortunately happens everywhere, even in these comment section.

If someone says very difficult sacrifices are going to be necessary to defeat the pandemic, but another person says everything is fine and you can do life as usual without danger, it is easy to see which one is going to be better received.

This is complicated when people not used to get scientific information don't get the final product (research well validated over years and years) and instead get the full process (information that is continually changing, getting more and more precise as more data is available); they are told "there is no scientific proof that masks are useful" and two weeks later "now we got that proof, masks help preventing infections" and they think people are lying to them.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Many articles trying to warn us about the "misinformation". Hmmm, give me the impression that they might in fact be telling us the truth, and some people feel threatened.

I recommend people check out Judy Mikovits; she's an experienced virologist and she says some very interesting things that certain people do not want us to hear. She makes it very clear that Fauci is a fraud and a bully, and should not be trusted.

Anyway, the above article is a deceptive piece of trash that is aimed at discrediting dissenting voices by misrepresenting their views. People should form their own opinions by going directly to the source rather than relying on such dishonest trash.

-8 ( +5 / -13 )

I recommend people check out Judy Mikovits; she's an experienced virologist and she says some very interesting things that certain people do not want us to hear.

Judy Mikovits is a liar and a fraud. I recommend that people check her out, too, but not for the reasons the above poster does.

https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2020/05/fact-checking-judy-mikovits-controversial-virologist-attacking-anthony-fauci-viral

https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/scientist-vaccine-jailed/

https://www.liebertpub.com/doi/10.1089/AID.2020.0095

https://www.medpagetoday.com/infectiousdisease/generalinfectiousdisease/86461

... and many, many more.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Well I guess most peopple understand that it is not "harmless" BUT most media try to make it look much worse then it actually is, especially comparted to a lot of others things people die from.

In a Country like Japan with its 120.000.000 people the average number of people that die EACH DAY ! is ~ 3000 ! compare that to 300 people that died that actually had Covid19 ( not even 100% that this is the reason they died ) since January ... that is less then 1 person extra a day ... hardly noticable at all ...

Okay other Countries like the US got hit worse and I can accept that wearing a Mask and beeing more Distant is actually one Reason why Japan got less deads but still people should be carefull about getting to much Panik.

In Afrika there are 2.000.000 Kids every year that die because they can't get enough food or clear water but noone cares and noone makes a fuss as they do because of 666.000 people that died Worldwide while having Covid19 (again not proven that this was the reason all of them died)

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

In Afrika there are 2.000.000 Kids every year that die because they can't get enough food or clear water but noone cares and noone makes a fuss as they do because of 666.000 people that died Worldwide while having Covid19

Who says no-one cares? Personally I contribute on a regular basis to both Oxfam and Medecins Sans Frontieres, both of which do sterling work in Africa and elsewhere. Just because there are huge problems there doesn't make Covid-19 any less of a problem. And you're right about the number of deaths from Covid-19, they're not necessarily accurate. Given many countries reporting capacities and/or honesty, they're 99% likely to be much higher.

If you're concerned about the situation in Africa (and other countries) and would like to help out, I can recommend the two organisations I mentioned. Their addresses are easily found on the internet.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Sorry math early in the morning ... for my example its not less then 1 but a litlte bit less then 2 more then average a day.

The Whole USA has ~7000 deads a day in Average ... okay 150.000 since January are still very much, if not mistaken about 700 or 10% extra a day ... you would Probably notice that but still it is only a very minor fraction of the whole population which is about 330.000.000

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

I recommend people check out Judy Mikovits; she's an experienced virologist and she says some very interesting things that certain people do not want us to hear.

Mitkovits nuttiest claim (and she has stacks of them) is that the corona virus was secretly inserted into the flu vaccine a few years back, and has lain dormant until this year, at which point it was 'activated' by wearing a mask. This she claims was done by design.

She is one of the multiple nutjobs currently making a quick buck off the gullibility of the uneducated.

People should form their own opinions by going directly to the source rather than relying on such dishonest trash.

So what is her 'source' for the illogical nonsense that she spouts? Where can I find the 'source' of mask-activated viruses and demon witchcraft sex?

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Still lots of disagreement among experts about this. I believe some more than others, but that is my choice. What I absolutely do NOT want is Big Tech companies playing doctor and decide what we may see and what not. That Youtube, Twitter et all removed the video of the frontline doctors is a disgrace. And that Google tweaked their search algorithms now so that Breitbart articles do not appear at all in searches should scare the Beejesus out of us.

This thing started when they conspired to shut down Alex Jones. OK, the guy is a clown, but he was also the proverbial canary in the coalmine. Big Tech is increasingly playing Big Brother.

-8 ( +1 / -9 )

Well, wearing a mask does stress the lungs, and this may trigger a variety of responses. I think she did mention something about the places that had the highest rates of Covid19 infection and or deaths had many people receiving certain flu shots. She might be onto something, I don't automatically disregard it. I think those who associate 5G with Covid19 make similar claims, that 5G causes certain stress on the body and that might be the response.

Anyway, any expert that says something that contradicts the official line is automatically silenced or "discredited". And Mikovits is definitely an expert.

Another expert that has been similarly" discredited is Nobel laureate Luc Montagnier (first to isolate the HIV virus), who stated that the virus was likely engineered as a vaccine in the Wuhan lab.

And there are many who believe that the 1918 Spanish flu actually started from vaccinated US soldiers.

Governments do lie, you know...

-7 ( +2 / -9 )

She might be onto something, I don't automatically disregard it.

Her wack theories require only a modicum of critical thinking for them to be disregarded. She relies on people not doing any of that though.

How does a mask activate a virus that has been in the body for several years?

Why wasn't it activated in previous years?

Why aren't Japanese people even more susceptible to the virus, seeing as how they wear a lot of masks?

There are a myriad of other questions that could be asked that would show her claims to be utter tosh, which leaves you wondering what exactly she is an 'expert' in?

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Clip, if you want answers to your myriad of questions, you might want to watch this:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kLzIU2qNHCI

and / or

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6YqkRpvn6jY

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

Clipclop

So what is her 'source' for the illogical nonsense that she spouts? Where can I find the 'source' of mask-activated viruses and demon witchcraft sex?

I have not followed Mitkovits, but can you tell me where she talks about "witchcraft sex"? Thanks. Always interested in learning.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Wonderful. A story about crackpots peddling ludicrous drivel on the internet gets overrun by crackpots peddling ludicrous drivel on the internet. Such glorious times we live in.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Clip, if you want answers to your myriad of questions, you might want to watch this:

That's not answers, that's 3 hours more of her talking to a camera but this time with Bill Gates conspiracy theory leader Robert Kennedy Jr. nodding along. Tell me what she claims so I don't have to watch it.

I have not followed Mitkovits, but can you tell me where she talks about "witchcraft sex"? Thanks. Always interested in learning.

That's not by Mikovits, it's from the latest Loon du jour, Stella Immanuel, who claims that gynaelogical problems are caused by people having sex with witches and demons in their sleep. It is literally written clearly in the article that you are here commenting on. Apparently she's an 'expert' too. The two of them seem to be competing for some crackpottery trophy.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

"Beliefs" have nothing to do with science. You either have the facts or you don't. If you don't then you either find the facts or shut up until you do.

To say "people should be able to chose what science they want to believe" is NOT science.

And that's why 150,000 people are dead in America. With thousands more, sadly, to die by the end of the year.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Clipcloo

That's not by Mikovits, it's from the latest Loon du jour, Stella Immanuel,

But you were talking about Mikovits. It is confusing if you jump topics in the middle of a sentence.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

ArtistsAtLarge

To say "people should be able to chose what science they want to believe" is NOT science.

So WHO should choose what people are allowed to believe, when the science is unclear (as it often is)?

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

But you were talking about Mikovits. It is confusing if you jump topics in the middle of a sentence.

True, but I'd assumed that you had read the article on which you were commenting, and would understand that the general topic is about fruitcake covid theories. Just to be clear on the two:

Mikovits - Magic mask-activated virus crank

Immanuel - Demon sex loon

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Another expert that has been similarly" discredited is Nobel laureate Luc Montagnier (first to isolate the HIV virus), who stated that the virus was likely engineered as a vaccine in the Wuhan lab.

Montagnier was discredited long before this, because for some years now he's been putting out garbled nonsense that has no scientific credibility. Homeopathy dressed up in technical jargon. He's flirted with other pseudoscience and outright nonsense (appearing at Autism One with Andrew Wakefield and Jenny McCarthy, for example).

The science for which he shared the Nobel Prize still stands - there has been no reason to dispute it or discredit it. But he's on a long list of Nobel laureates afflicted with what is jocularly known as Nobel Disease.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

So WHO should choose what people are allowed to believe, when the science is unclear (as it often is)?

Beliefs have nothing to do with this, people should make an effort to be informed with reliable, truthful information, even if it is not as positive or hopeful as they would like. Unfortunately many people really detest to make an intellectual effort, and are perpetually looking for someone that can do the thinking for them so they can just blindly believe.

The science is not unclear for anybody that chooses to invest a tiny bit of effort to understand what is being done and the meaning of results, it only becomes "unclear" when people choose to follow known cranks that endlessly repeat the same proven lies over and over again.

Media and SNS have every right to stop giving a forum to proven lies, and even a responsibility to do it when those lies put in risk the health of millions of people. If objective, valid data proves something is false there is no advantage on that something being repeated.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

virusrex

Media and SNS have every right to stop giving a forum to proven lies,

No, they do not. Because they are not the arbiters of what are "proven lies" in a situation that is in flux. You know very well that there disagreements among scientists, see the different policies that various countries are taking, following the advise of their experts.

In case of this latest incident, this was a group of doctors who have a different opinion from the current mainstream one. Who is Google to decide that we must not see them? And how does that fit with protection as a platform under article 230? Youtube (aka Google) again acting as a publisher, while claiming to be a platform.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Clipclop

Mitkovits nuttiest claim (and she has stacks of them) is that the corona virus was secretly inserted into the flu vaccine a few years back, and has lain dormant until this year, at which point it was 'activated' by wearing a mask. This she claims was done by design.

...and how do you know that if you are not allowed to see her? Or do you take word of the censors at face value? That is admirable level of blind trust.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

...and how do you know that if you are not allowed to see her? Or do you take word of the censors at face value? That is admirable level of blind trust.

It's not 'blind trust' Because that's what she said. What she said is not debated since several million people saw the video and it has been well documented. You can still see it if you want. Google still shows results for it.

"So, if you’ve ever had a flu vaccine, you were injected with coronaviruses."

'Wearing the mask literally activates your own virus. You’re getting sick from your own reactivated, coronavirus expressions. And if it happens to be SARS-CoV-2, then you’ve got a big problem.'

She claims that the flu vaccine contained the corona virus. And that virus was 'activated' several years later by wearing a mask. Do you have any doubts abouth this theory?

3 ( +4 / -1 )

clipclop

It's not 'blind trust' Because that's what she said. What she said is not debated since several million people saw the video and it has been well documented. You can still see it if you want. Google still shows results for it.

It is blind trust when you have to take word of CNN for it, while Big Tech removes the original video. I am old old leftist, but todays left has left me, sorry about the pun. This fanatical demand for censorship and cancel culture used to be a characteristics of the fascists, now the so-called left has adopted it.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

It is blind trust when you have to take word of CNN for it,

CNN did not make 'Plandemic' or make her say what she said, so your odd comment is completely irrelevant.

Right wingers seem to watch / care about CNN more than the people who don't actually watch it.

Mikovits claimed that the corona virus was inserted in to the flu vaccine several years ago, and then 'activated' several years later by simply wearing a mask. Her quotes are below and they are pretty unequivocal. I've yet to hear one person here put their nuts on the line and say that they believe her tosh.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

...and how do you know that if you are not allowed to see her?

Um because science. Because we're not morons.

Literally no one of even average intelligence is stupid enough to believe this woman.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

It is blind trust when you have to take word of CNN for it

Yeah, because CNN is the only news organization out there.

Why do you keep watching CNN? Do you like how angry it makes you? I prefer to take in my news from non-American sources, as the American media is fake-news, both your team's AND the other. If you believe either of you media, you're a complete moron.

I'll assume you don't watch fox or CNN, right?

1 ( +4 / -3 )

"So, if you’ve ever had a flu vaccine, you were injected with coronaviruses"

Nope. Influenza virus are not a coronavirus. Very different. Some strains of the common cold are caused by coronavirus, but the common cold is also caused by some rhinovirus strains. Influenza viruses are something different from both of these.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

"Why do you keep watching CNN?"

It's one news source out of many that are available. Each covers different stories in a given week. CNN does a great job of covering space exploration and planetary science. But to be informed you view multiple news sources, including Japan Today. Reuters is great. So is the Straits Times. Each have their strengths. If you only view one news source daily you miss a lot.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

"Beliefs" have nothing to do with science. You either have the facts or you don't. If you don't then you either find the facts or shut up until you do.

To say "people should be able to chose what science they want to believe" is NOT science.

Yeah, but what we have hear is a group of scientists that decide what is the truth and any scientist that says something different, that threatens their massive profits, are silenced and labeled as loon, discredited, jailed.

I guess people said these things about Galileo.

The food pyramid was a "scientific consensus" that was pushed onto the people. Anyone who disagreed with it was called a quack, loon,... Well we now know that the food pyramid has killed millions.

There is also Semmelweis, the first doctor who noticed that hand washing resulting in a decrease in patient death. The medical establishment refused to listen to him and he was locked up in an insane asylum.

Calling these dissenting voices loons is to prevent people from checking out the original source.

And that's why 150,000 people are dead in America. With thousands more, sadly, to die by the end of the year.

With all the fraud going on in counting covid infections and deaths, I suspect only a small fraction of them are actually due to covid. And from those who did died from covid, probably many of them would have survived if they never followed the food pyramid...

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

No, they do not. Because they are not the arbiters of what are "proven lies" in a situation that is in flux. You know very well that there disagreements among scientists, see the different policies that various countries are taking, following the advise of their experts.

False, they have every right, science is clear and the taken down messages are false for every realistic consideration, they are not "disagreements" but things already proven false, policies are affected by many things other than science, but that does not mean science is different because of differences of policy, you are confusing cause and results.

In case of this latest incident, this was a group of doctors who have a different opinion from the current mainstream one. Who is Google to decide that we must not see them? And how does that fit with protection as a platform under article 230? Youtube (aka Google) again acting as a publisher, while claiming to be a platform.

No, it is not about a different opinion, it is about a false opinion that can be demonstrated as one, therefore there is no obligation for anybody to give a forum to these lies, both a publisher and a platform have the right to take out dangerous lies when clearly identified as was in this case.

Yeah, but what we have hear is a group of scientists that decide what is the truth and any scientist that says something different, that threatens their massive profits, are silenced and labeled as loon, discredited, jailed.

No, that is just ignorance about how science works, scientist that disagree based only on their imagination end up being shunned because that is precisely the worst thing you do while being a scientist, is like law enforcement openly breaking the law.

Your "profits" argument has already been proven wrong lots of times, dexamethasone is a dirt cheap medicine, and what happened to the scientists that published studies about its usefulness in covid patients? where they shunned? punished? their discovery decreases cost in trillions worldwide, but they are perfectly fine and working the same as before. The difference? they did good science and proved its efficacy with cold data, to the benefit of all humankind. On the other hand you have liars and unethical people that cannot prove anything but still ask people to believe them, even if they have been found to lie repeatedly, that is why they are silenced.

I guess people said these things about Galileo.

Except that galielo had the science on his side, crooks hate science because the pesky thing keeps proving them wrong.

The food pyramid was a "scientific consensus" that was pushed onto the people. Anyone who disagreed with it was called a quack, loon,... Well we now know that the food pyramid has killed millions.

Scientific consensus is just that, what science has found about reality, it is pushed because that is the difference between objective and subjective knowledge, objective remains the same even if you don't want to believe it. You know what is the other side from scientific consensus? comforting lies, things that cannot be proven, or even that can be proven as lies, and those have killed billions and billions of people.

There is also Semmelweis, the first doctor who noticed that hand washing resulting in a decrease in patient death. The medical establishment refused to listen to him and he was locked up in an insane asylum.

Which is why science as we know it today is a very different thing, with data at the very top so it does not matter what anybody thinks or believes, truth is as it can be proven, you are on the side of the "establishment" back then, when you just had to believe people even if they could not prove anything that they said, and where people with proof and data could be ignored if their opponents were loud enough.

Sorry, there is no obligation to let the people proven wrong to be even louder.

Calling these dissenting voices loons is to prevent people from checking out the original source.

The opposite, checking the original source is what allows anybody to call the dissenters loons, because they deny objective and precise data and try to replace it with their own unjustified beliefs. You would know if you were to the original source, which obviously are not videos on youtube but scientific reports.

With all the fraud going on in counting covid infections and deaths, I suspect only a small fraction of them are actually due to covid. And from those who did died from covid, probably many of them would have survived if they never followed the food pyramid...

Every professional association in the world involved in health care says you are wrong, so your suspicions can be safely discarded as baseless, you could of course present your data and prove the world is wrong and you are right, but for that you would need data, objective studies, proof.

I seriously doubt you have it, while they do. They are the Galileos and Semmelweis in this situation.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Simply put, years of politicians, newspapers and corporations blatantly lying to us have taken their toll. We just don't know who to trust anymore but so many of us know well that it is NOT politicians and corporations. The list of things that were dismissed as "crazy conspiracy theory" later proven true is long. And its worth noting that those were all the rich and powerful using and abusing the rest of us like we were trash. So don't be too hard on those who will believe anyone BUT them or those working with them. After all, all the corruption and lies is a huge part of how Trump got elected. Sure, he is a fraud himself, but having a non-politician calling everyone else frauds gained him traction for good reason. But those slow to learn, who trusted the government, press and corporations for decades before finally learning are still going to trust Trump and Alex Jones and their ilk for some time to come.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

I guess people said these things about Galileo.

Except that galielo had the science on his side, crooks hate science because the pesky thing keeps proving them wrong.

Except back then, they had self-righteous thugs saying his wacky ideas were wrong, proven wrong, discredited... basically exactly the same as what you, Clipetyclop, and others have been doing.

Scientific consensus is just that, what science has found about reality, it is pushed because that is the difference between objective and subjective knowledge...

No, the food pyramid "consensus" had plenty of critics for decades, basing their opinions on science, not just their imagination. And they were subjected to the same kind of abuse by the same kind of self-righteous thugs. If the critics were given an honest chance to be heard and theories discussed openly, millions of lives would have been saved.

No, that is just ignorance about how science works

Hate to break it to you, but I AM a scientist. Those who do not question what they are being told are the ones that have no idea what science really is. Being a scientist is not just having a carefully crafted name.

Just saying that what you believe is "science" and anything that disagrees with is automatically some imagined nonsense is not what science is about.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

With all the fraud going on in counting covid infections and deaths, I suspect only a small fraction of them are actually due to covid. And from those who did died from covid, probably many of them would have survived if they never followed the food pyramid...

Every professional association in the world involved in health care says you are wrong,

Actually, there were a number of videos out there showing actual health care officials from top government associations clearly stating what I wrote. Well they don't use the word fraud, but except for that they were basically saying the same thing. So I am not just making stuff up.

Unfortunately, those videos have been deleted from YouTube. But I have pointed to them in the past many times on JT, so if you were truly interested in the truth, I am sure you've seen them already...

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Except back then, they had self-righteous thugs saying his wacky ideas were wrong, proven wrong, discredited... basically exactly the same as what you, Clipetyclop, and others have been doing.

No, that would be the contrary, because the data, the evidence, the proof is what proved he was right, and his opponents wrong, as wrong as the information taken down.

Again, you are defending the crooks that have no evidence and want to be as loud as possible to silence those who have it. You are against Galileo.

No, the food pyramid "consensus" had plenty of critics for decades, basing their opinions on science, not just their imagination. And they were subjected to the same kind of abuse by the same kind of self-righteous thugs. If the critics were given an honest chance to be heard and theories discussed openly, millions of lives would have been saved

Put here the science, saying the critics have science on their side is very easy, providing that science is the part where always the critics become silent, because they don't have it. They have cherry picked results, invalid conclusions, sometimes they put a study as proof of something when the study says exactly the opposite. Everybody has the honest chance to provide data. Crooks cannot take that chance because they do not have it. Therefore their only resource are videos without any of that date, hoping that people ignorant about what science is about can be fooled by someone that lie enough confidence.

Precisely because the crooks are so loud is why billions of lives are lost, when people are conviced by their lies they stop being in contact with reality and are fooled into supporting them, costing them their health and lives way too frequently.

Hate to break it to you, but I AM a scientist. Those who do not question what they are being told are the ones that have no idea what science really is. Being a scientist is not just having a carefully crafted name.

If you want to use your position as an argument you need to provide credentials to prove it. Anybody can say they are scientists, that does not mean it is true. Specially when "questioning what they are being told" only means "believing proven lies" for them. That is not scientific, is just denialism pretending is skepticism.

Another very important thing is that people that ignore about science think a position can substitute for data and evidence, it does not. If a Nobel prize say something but an elementary school kid say the contrary and has objective scientific data on his side the Nobel prize would still be wrong.

Just saying that what you believe is "science" and anything that disagrees with is automatically some imagined nonsense is not what science is about.

Yes, that is the point against the missinformers and crooks that were "silenced" they only had their mistaken beliefs that went against the scientific consensus and instead of showing data to prove it they automatically say anybody against them is part of a global conspiracy.

Good that you at least understood now why their lies don't deserve protection.

Actually, there were a number of videos out there showing actual health care officials from top government associations clearly stating what I wrote. Well they don't use the word fraud, but except for that they were basically saying the same thing. So I am not just making stuff up.

See, instead of providing solid proof, direct evidence, the only resource you have are videos, not a single name, not a single full transcript and specially not even what you said but something "similar" that we have to trust you interpreted correctly.

Which health care officials? from which top government associations? from which country? what exactly are they saying? and the most important part, based on what data?

Unfortunately, those videos have been deleted from YouTube. But I have pointed to them in the past many times on JT, so if you were truly interested in the truth, I am sure you've seen them already..

The ones I saw were all terribly wrong, full of lies that were easy to demonstrate as so, with known liars and crooks having a long list of times where they say things that were not true. That only prove the point of the article, they deserve to be deleted.

Do you think youtube is the only place to put videos? no, do you think the only kind of "proof" are videos? scientific studies is the minimum standard of proof, why go much lower than that trying to prove a point? is it because you don't have this minimum?

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Do you think youtube is the only place to put videos? no, do you think the only kind of "proof" are videos?

Youtube is by far the biggest platform for videos, and since they claim to be a platform, they should not act as a publisher by selectively censoring videos.

And it is completely misleading to cloak such censorship as "science". Science, by definition needs free flow of information and not censorship.

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 The list of things that were dismissed as "crazy conspiracy theory" later proven true is long.

I doubt that that's actually true where science is concerned. I get the feeling your list would be short, especially if I was to insist that you confined it to modern(ish) science that actually was dismissed as "crazy".

Meanwhile, the list of crazy conspiracy theories that actually are crazy conspiracy theories is practically inexhaustible.

As to who to believe...not these people.

Montagnier has joined the ranks of the wackjobs. He's far from the first Nobel scientist to do so. But the work that gained him recognition stands on its own merit. It was quickly accepted at the time and HIV science and treatment ever since has been in its debt. The achievement cannot be diminished, but Montagnier himself can certainly be criticized for his erratic pronouncements, bad science, and poor judgement in later years. His Wuhan accusations are being taken in that context: it doesn't help that the science isn't finding any evidence to support his claim that the virus is manmade, and he isn't providing any.

Andrew Wakefield didn't go so far as to achieve great things in his field, but was a physician who received his medical training at a respected institution and had a medical career at a couple more. When he broke his autism/vaccine story, he did incalculable (and ongoing) damage to MMR, to measles vaccination, and to vaccination in general. His work was based on a combination of medical malpractice, ethical violations (including his treatment of patients), conflict of interest, and scientific fraud. This was ultimately uncovered, and he was struck from the medical register. People have been booted off for less. His "work" will never be vindicated; it was worthless. He is not a victim, he is not a maverick. He was a rogue doctor and a fraud. He has lived up to that in the years since by going full antivax, associating full-time with like-minded conspiracy creeps, and basically doing anything for a buck. He parted company with science a very long time ago. Vaccines didn't.

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Youtube is by far the biggest platform for videos, and since they claim to be a platform, they should not act as a publisher by selectively censoring videos.

And it is completely misleading to cloak such censorship as "science". Science, by definition needs free flow of information and not censorship.

You are wrong on both things, a platform have every right to block deceptive content demonstrated as such.

An no, there is no cloaking of censorship as "science", that makes no sense. Nobody is saying "we make science by deleting this video". Science is the basis that can be used to demonstrate the videos are misleading and false, and that they put in risk the public health, thus fulfilling the requisites to be pull down.

What do you think platforms do with deceptive messages from fraudsters and thieves trying to get people to send them money with lies? exactly the same thing. Your idea that a platform cannot do as they seem appropriate is not based on anything but your own imagination.

Also, the main point is that a video is already a tertiary or even lower source of information, if that is your only source that means there is no primary source to sustain your beliefs, else it would be simple to find it even if the videos are taken down (and also it would be extremely easy to link to the videos in any other service to "prove" that point).

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Misinformation on the virus proving highly contagious

I’m just so so relieved that the Associated Press is keeping me informed so I don’t need to think for myself.

invalid CSRF

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I’m just so so relieved that the Associated Press is keeping me informed so I don’t need to think for myself.

Your leader is counting on that, don't let him down.

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I’m just so so relieved that the Associated Press is keeping me informed so I don’t need to think for myself.

Unfortunately, many who feel that it's necessary to "think for themselves", just aren't very good at the whole "thinking" thing. They're like obese people playing soccer.

Which leads directly to articles like this one.

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Youtube is by far the biggest platform for videos, and since they claim to be a platform, they should not act as a publisher by selectively censoring videos.

In a capitalist market, any of those who feel that they've been wrongly censored are whiners who don't take personal responsibility. No one is stopping them from creating their own platform where they won't be "censored". Talk about a bunch of eternal victims.

Eternal victims are pretty useless to society.

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strangeland

Yeah, because CNN is the only news organization out there.

LOL!

Why do you keep watching CNN? Do you like how angry it makes you?

Because it is on Japanese cable, and because I like to look at different information bubbles and not stay locked in one. Strange concept, maybe...

I prefer to take in my news from non-American sources, as the American media is fake-news, both your team's AND the other.

I look at non-American sources too, and try not be part of one "team".

If you believe either of you media, you're a complete moron. I'll assume you don't watch fox or CNN, right?

I watch CNN every day for breakfast and am amazed by the level of fanatical agitprop. I don´t have "Fox" on the TV, from the sheer hatred that station gets by the fanatics I must assume it is vastly better than CNN et al.

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strangerland

No one is stopping them from creating their own platform

Sorry, that talking point is false. In the real world, a few big tech companies have established themselves as the de facto public space and have a monopoly. And they have done so under legal protection (section 230) that frees them from legal obligations they would have as publishers, because they claim to be "platforms". But now with their censorship the "platforms" act as publishers. This clear abuse.

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virusrex

You are wrong on both things, a platform have every right to block deceptive content demonstrated as such.

Criminal content, yes. But they are doing here is editorialising, not acting as platforms.

An no, there is no cloaking of censorship as "science", that makes no sense. Nobody is saying "we make science by deleting this video".

Err, yes. Big Tech like Youtube is doing that by deciding which side in a debate to believe.

Science is the basis that can be used to demonstrate the videos are misleading and false, and that they put in risk the public health, thus fulfilling the requisites to be pull down.

You assume that the "science" is settled and no dissident voices must be heard. That is the opposite of science.

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Sorry, that talking point is false. In the real world, a few big tech companies have established themselves as the de facto public space and have a monopoly. And they have done so under legal protection (section 230) that frees them from legal obligations they would have as publishers, because they claim to be "platforms". But now with their censorship the "platforms" act as publishers. This clear abuse.

There are endless services where anybody can put a video, you can put your own page with the video it is impossible to have a monopoly over where you can put content.

Also, not having the obligation to retire false information do not mean they have now the obligation to let false information that put the lives and health of other alone, that is a completely different thing. They have every right to retire proven lies, the same as you have every right to not use their services if you don't like how they do it.

Criminal content, yes. But they are doing here is editorialising, not acting as platforms.

Platforms do have the right to retire content that is false and that put in risk the lives or health of other people. You are confused between not having the obligation to do something and having the obligation of not doing something.

Err, yes. Big Tech like Youtube is doing that by deciding which side in a debate to believe.

No, it is not, they are retiring false information according to science, that is perfectly fine because only one side have the objective data to prove what they say, there is no debate between objective information and proven lies, lies lose by default.

Put a link here where the media say that they are doing science, you cannot because nobody is saying it. They are doing things supported by science, never pretending they are the ones doing the science.

You assume that the "science" is settled and no dissident voices must be heard. That is the opposite of science.

The science is "settled" in the sense that denialists do not have any evidence to contradict the consensus. They are exactly as right as anybody saying that the virus infection gives you superpowers, The opposite of science would be to do things against the evidence, which is what the videos try to promote.

Dissident voices without basis can be safely discarded.

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Err, yes. Big Tech like Youtube is doing that by deciding which side in a debate to believe.

Alt-facts eh. Science must be bent to support a pre-determined belief. Then that fake science must be given equal weight as real science, and then private companies must be compelled to allow the fake science on their platforms.

The far right & Trump wouldn't be having so much trouble with youtube, twitter et al if they simply stopped lying so much.

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> If you want to use your position as an argument you need to provide credentials to prove it. Anybody can say they are scientists, that does not mean it is true. Specially when "questioning what they are being told" only means "believing proven lies" for them. That is not scientific, is just denialism pretending is skepticism.

@virusrex

Your posts are long and rambling and lack coherence.

Also, where is your ‘proof’ that shows a balanced view?

My previous post on the dangers of vaccines cited actual cases but your posts again and again do not.

Where is science that you speak of?

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It’s interesting watching people claim Virusrex can’t be trusted when he is clearly the most informed scientist on this site.

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@virusrex

Your posts are long and rambling and lack coherence.

So, I prove you are mistaken and your argument is that? Sorry that I prefer to be boring but right instead of mistaken and false like you.

Also, where is your ‘proof’ that shows a balanced view?

Why would I have proof about that if my argument is that there is no need to balance lies and mistakes? If something is proved to be false then it can be ignored without problem, there is no need to balance it. Else how could you possibly balance every single lie? For balance you only need to include true things.

My previous post on the dangers of vaccines cited actual cases but your posts again and again do not.

I have proved every single of your "cases" as false, either you give a wrong conclusion from cherry picked data or give wrong information. There is not a single case where your examples can be constructed as truthful. Why would I need "actual cases" to balance something that is false in the first place?

Where is science that you speak of?

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/

You know, where the primary studies are that guide the actions and recommendations of every professional association that deals with health in the world. And where you can find proof about all the lies that antivaxxers and other science denialists love to repeat.

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virusrex

The science is "settled" in the sense that denialists do not have any evidence to contradict the consensus.

Denialists of what, exactly? This virus is still new, and there are different opinions about its function, about the preventive measures, and about medication. Of course governments have to decide which experts to believe when deciding policy, and that is why we see different policies in different countries.

The way to deal with it is open communication, peer review, and gradual improvement of knowledge.

For the life of it, I can not understand why you think the censors at Youtube should be the arbiters of what we are allowed to see and what not to see.

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virusrex

Where is science that you speak of?

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/

....which right on top of the page says: COVID-19 is an emerging, rapidly evolving situation.

It does not say: "Youtube's censors know best."

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Denialists of what, exactly? This virus is still new, and there are different opinions about its function, about the preventive measures, and about medication. Of course governments have to decide which experts to believe when deciding policy, and that is why we see different policies in different countries.

No, governments do not have to "choose" experts about science because all say the same thing, because a virus being new does not mean knowledge is contradicted and conflicting, we see different policies because (surprisingly!) all countries are different. Not all can put the same policies, not all need the same policies. Factors external to scientific facts influence what has to be done, that should be very obvious. The science is the same, what is necessary in a country don't.

The way to deal with it is open communication, peer review, and gradual improvement of knowledge.

For the life of it, I can not understand why you think the censors at Youtube should be the arbiters of what we are allowed to see and what not to see.

Nothing of what is incompatible with taking out proven lies, it may surprise you but open communication, peer review and gradual improvement is still being done without any problem just because proven liars are not given a forum to repeat their proven lies.

Youtube is perfectly fine being the ones that decide what to give their power and reach, it is there in the terms and conditions people have to read and agree when putting their content, exactly the same as if they wanted to put sexual content, or incite to violence to give more examples.

And specially because they are not deciding what is true or not, they leave that to science, which is the one that should do it, so it is perfectly acceptable.

People that want to repeat their lies should do it in their own spaces instead of trying to force anyone else to have them in their platforms.

....which right on top of the page says: COVID-19 is an emerging, rapidly evolving situation.

It does not say: "Youtube's censors know best."

That is irrelevant, there are things not known, saying so it is not what is being retired, saying proven lies is, which is part of the responsibility they have specially in an emerging rapidly evolving situation, propagating lies is both unnecessary and counterproductive, so they are perfectly fine by not being forced to do it.

And no, youtube is not the one deciding what are lies or not, that role falls to science, which is the best method we have to know that, even if the liars and crooks that want to profit from the ignorance of others hate it.

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