NPR's article about the COVID Litigation Conference: How accurate was it? Not very.
They paint me as a "conspiracy" theorist and not a scientist among other things. It was a good learning experience for me to see just how accurately NPR reports the facts. I was not impressed.
The NPR article about our COVID litigation conference finally hit.
We were expecting a hit piece and we were not disappointed: NPR delivered!
Next time, I’m going to have my recorder going as well so you can compare what was said against how it was positioned in the article. It’s really stunning how they ignore most of what was said only to focus on small pieces to craft their narrative.
The big takeaway for me from the conference is that it is up to us (the people and their lawyers) to enforce the laws and keep the government in check. If that doesn’t happen, people’s rights get trampled upon.
The article missed all of that.
After reading the article, I called up my PR guy, Trevor FitzGibbon, and asked how NPR could have missed the main point of the conference. He replied that that’s what they do; slant the article in the direction they want to take it.
My response to the article
I’m not going to do a blow by blow rebuttal because that’s a mutual waste of time. I’m going to hit the high points.
Am I a conspiracy theorist?
I’m positioned as a conspiracy theorist who thinks people are conspiring to make a profit.
By "they," Kirsch means a network of pharmaceutical companies, governments, doctors and journalists that he argues are covering up a pandemic-driven plot to poison the world for profit.
Wow. “Poison the world for profit”?!?! That’s outrageous. There may be some people who believe that, but I’m not among them. I’d love to see the tape recording they have backing up that statement.
I’ve always said that the people who are promoting the vaccine are in one of the following categories:
People who genuinely believe (often through willful blindness) that the vaccines are saving lives. About 85% are in this category. It’s about 100% among CNN, CDC, FDA, and NIH employees.
People who know the truth but who are forced into supporting the vaccines in order to keep their job. The rest fall into this category.
People who deliberately suppress the truth such as Dr. Eric O. Freed, the editor-in-chief of Viruses and Gorka Garcia-Malene, the FOIA officer at the NIH. Freed conspired with others to unethically suppress the Jiang paper and all evidence of the cover-up. I’ll be writing about that shortly.
People who now know the truth about how dangerous the COVID vaccines are and consciously choose to suppress it. For example, there are people at the FDA who truly believed that the vaccine injured were just imagining their adverse events. After they became convinced by top doctors (who are actually seeing the patients) that they were wrong, the FDA scientists decided it was better for the FDA to remain silent and not warn the public. I know who they are. Does anyone at NPR want to know who they are? Of course not! I will make this information available to anyone in Congress or the mainstream media who will expose it. Right now, that’s nobody.
I don’t personally know of anyone promoting the COVID vaccines because they (a) deliberately want to kill people or (b) because they want to make lots of money.
I don’t know of any “conspiracy” to promote the vaccine to make money. Of course the government and drug companies “influence” others to promote the vaccine; that is well established. But both the government and the people responding to those requests are doing so because they honestly believe the vaccines are safe and effective.
The reporter writing the story clearly honestly believes the vaccines are safe and effective and couldn’t explain to me any of the data I talked about in the interview. It was of no interest.
Am I a scientist?
The article says that I admitted I’m not a scientist in a Zoom call. That’s interesting because I don’t recall such a call.
Professor Morris, like David Gorski and other “debunkers”, eschews all real-time discussion forums. If this call occurred, I can’t imagine that I would not be publishing it.
Do I qualify? Of course.
I apply the scientific method to the original research I write about. I look at the data and see which hypothesis better fits all the data (while also acknowledging the reliability of the data). That’s what scientists do.
I have two degrees from MIT. Both are science degrees, not “arts” degrees. The degrees are in the field of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science. I have a Master of Science degree from MIT.
For someone who immediately went into a business career after graduating from MIT, I also have a respectable h-index which is a measure of how other scientists respect your work. Had I chosen to engage in an academic career, my h-index would undoubtedly be much higher.
And finally, I’ve written over 2,000 articles on my Substack about the COVID vaccines. In many of these articles, I do original research in order to advance knowledge in this area rather than simply reporting on the advances made by others.
What I do in my articles is to explain what I believe the data is saying and which hypothesis is a better fit to the data. That’s what scientists do.
So in trying to convey to people that I’m not a scientist, that’s just very misleading.
Are we trying to “keep the cause alive”?
The article says:
On May 11, the federal government's public health emergency will expire. To keep the cause alive, some in the movement are trying to build up a legal arm.
Are you kidding me?!? We’d like nothing better than for the federal government to halt the vaccine, admit their mistakes, and pay reasonable damages to the families of the dead and injured, and restore the medical licenses and lost income to the doctors who had the courage to speak out.
If they do that, we’re all happy to pack our bags and move on to other areas.
Are the vaccines safe?
The NPR article says:
The scientific consensus shows COVID vaccines are safe and significantly reduce the chances of death or serious illness. While many Americans may share a distrust of pharmaceutical companies and healthcare systems, there is no evidence of the kind of conspiracy alleged in these circles.
Whoa. Wait a second. Shouldn’t they point out that they achieve “scientific consensus” through censorship and intimidation? If you disagree, they revoke your medical license. The NPR article simply fails to point that out.
There is no doubt these vaccines are unsafe based on the data. That’s why none of us “anti-vaxxers” can get any expert on the “safe and effective” side to engage in a civil scientific debate on the data.
While there may be some people who think there is a conspiracy between pharma and the medical community, the vast majority of people I know wouldn’t characterize that way. They would say that pharma companies buy influence and are very good at it. In addition, the government agencies play along because they have been led to believe that the vaccine is the best way out of the pandemic and everyone wants to get out of the pandemic.
Is Professor Jeffrey Morris reliable?
The NPR article quotes UPenn Professor Jeffrey Morris to debunk me.
Morris wasn’t even at the conference so why did the reporter bring this up?
Easy. She was looking for dirt to discredit me.
The NPR reporter links to his work as definitive debunking of my work.
For example, his article on VAERS was written on Jan 30, 2021 (and updated a few data later). It takes a while for the reports to filter through the VAERS system. So there were few reports at the time. It’s very misleading.
I’ve already written about VAERS extensively. See this article.
I could write a book about Morris, but I wrote a Substack about him instead. He then responded with this article. And so we can get into this spiral of longer and longer and longer articles that may fool most people who are not skilled in VAERS. For example, he claims that “So your estimate depends COMPLETELY on your explicit assumption that there is NO higher reporting to VAERs in 2021 than previous years.” This is blatantly false. The VAERS URF was computed using 2021 numbers.
He never points out that my estimates match estimates independently done by others using other methods. How can THAT happen? For example, how does Morris explain this poll which was done by an independent market research firm? And why doesn’t anyone dare to repeat the poll to “correct” it?
One of us has spent a lot of time in the VAERS system and one of us hasn’t. Can you tell the difference?
I’m not trying to be comprehensive here, but I hope you get the idea.
I used to really respect NPR. But now I know what was said and what appears in the article and my opinion has changed.
If NPR was really interested in the truth, they’d host a panel discussion between experts on both sides of the debate.
They will never do that because they don’t want anyone in America to hear both sides of the debate. It’s not that they are afraid of losing the debate; they are confident they are right. It’s that they truly think they would be legitimizing the anti-vaxxers by hosting a debate.
News is about reporting what happened and not making judgements. NPR has really lost it. NPR, like the other media companies, is putting out propaganda and not news. They need to take a hard look at themselves in the mirror.