Omicron or OmniCon?
You might remember from my post 3 weeks ago,
“Psychological operations (PSYOP) are operations to convey selected information and indicators to audiences to influence their emotions, motives, and objective reasoning, and ultimately the behavior of governments, organizations, groups, and individuals.”
One of the most insidious and pervasive elements of the COVID-19 PSYOP is the notion, enthusiastically promulgated by the lamestream media, that the slew of biosecurity theatrics that has been inflicted on the public – including mass quarantining of healthy people, business and school closures, curfews, wearing of facemasks by people in the community, “social distancing” and closure of international and domestic borders – is backed by scientific evidence.
However, most people don’t want to plough through hundreds of pages of government documents to find out what “science says”; they’d rather hear it from a scientist.
But which scientist should they listen to? Well, as 60 Minutes producer Gerald Stone was fond of opining, “If there’s a flood, the only person you want to interview is Noah”. And Noah, in this case, would be Dr Donald Henderson.
Donald Ainslie Henderson MD, MPH, was the man credited with designing the strategy that eradicated smallpox from the world. The self-described “disease detective” also worked on poliomyelitis eradication, served as an adviser on bioterrorism to several US presidents, and published extensively on viral illnesses including influenza, ebola and dengue.
Unfortunately, we can’t interview Henderson on the global response to COVID-19, as he died in 2016 at the age of 87. However, we can do the next best thing, which is to read an extraordinarily important article that he authored ten years before his death.
In the early years of the twenty-first century, Henderson became concerned that a small coterie of computer scientists and public health officials, none of whom had any experience in managing outbreaks of infectious disease, was attempting to replace the evidence-based strategies that he had helped develop during his long and illustrious career, with primitive, myopic and non-evidence-based approaches to infectious disease containment such as large-scale quarantine, travel restrictions, prohibition of social gatherings and community masking.
In his 2006 paper, ‘Disease Mitigation Measures in the Control of Pandemic Influenza‘, Henderson systematically demolished the arguments for all of these containment measures, pointing out that not only was there either a lack of evidence for their effectiveness, or direct evidence of their ineffectiveness, but that each measure would inevitably have unintended consequences, or as he described them, “secondary social and economic impacts”.
Even if containment measures were shown to have a small benefit – for example, a temporary slowing of viral transmission – Henderson painstakingly explained that the negative consequences on public health and social and economic activity would far outweigh those trivial benefits.
“Disease mitigation measures, however well intentioned, have potential social, economic, and political consequences that need to be fully considered by political leaders as well as health officials.”
Henderson’s conclusion is eerily relevant to the situation we find ourselves in today:
“Experience has shown that communities faced with epidemics or other adverse events respond best and with the least anxiety when the normal social functioning of the community is least disrupted. Strong political and public health leadership to provide reassurance and to ensure that needed medical care services are provided are critical elements. If either is seen to be less than optimal, a manageable epidemic could move toward catastrophe.”
And now, we find ourselves in the very jaws of the catastrophe which Henderson so presciently foretold, 15 years ago:
Normal social functioning has been severely disrupted through prolonged closure of schools, many workplaces, gyms, cafes, bars, churches, social and sporting clubs and most other venues for human interaction, as well as inconsistent and frankly nonsensical restrictions on the size of gatherings in people’s homes and even outdoors, in public places.
Politicians and public health officials have fomented unwarranted terror of SARS-CoV-2 infection (which for most people poses an extraordinarily small risk to health and life), as well as inciting division by scapegoating and stigmatising individuals who have made the informed decision to decline an experimental medical treatment which does not prevent infection with, nor transmission of, SARS-CoV-2 and therefore offers no community benefit.
The provision of medical care has been compromised in multiple, equally egregious ways. Firstly, the denial of evidence-based early treatments for COVID-19 has resulted in the needless suffering of people who, had they received home treatment, could have reduced their risk of hospitalisation and death by 85%. Secondly, diagnosis and treatment of non-COVID-related illnesses was impeded by the large-scale switch to telehealth and the cancellation of elective procedures. And thirdly, the president of the Victorian branch of the Australian Medical Association, Dr Roderick McRae, has effectively called for the denial of medical treatment to people who question the dominant narrative on COVID-19 despite Australia’s public health system being funded by everyone who pays income tax in this country – or who did, until they were sacked or had their small business shut down because of the diktats of power-drunk “public health officials” who have no understanding of what public health actually is.
It’s difficult to imagine a more comprehensive failure of public health policy than the one we’re embroiled in.
And just when you think it couldn’t possibly get any worse, we have – drum roll please – the Omicron variant.
Countries around the world are rushing to out-stupid each other by suspending flights and barring arrivals from countries in which the – supposedly – new scariant has been detected, despite the fact that it has already been detected in California, Hong Kong, the Netherlands, Italy, Germany, Belgium, Austria, the United Kingdom and here in Australia, which means it is already successfully spreading across the globe, rendering border closures utterly pointless.
As D. A. Henderson pointed out 15 years ago:
“Travel restrictions, such as closing airports and screening travelers at borders, have historically been ineffective. The World Health Organization Writing Group concluded that ‘screening and quarantining entering travelers at international borders did not substantially delay virus introduction in past pandemics . . . and will likely be even less effective in the modern era.'”
But if your aim was to generate panic in the financial markets and coerce people who don’t want to take ineffective and dangerous experimental medical treatments into accepting them on pain of economic and social destruction, the last thing you would want to do is to adhere to scientifically-sound principles of infectious disease management.
You also wouldn’t want to publicise the fact that of the four cases infected with the Omicron scariant who were detected in Botswana, the country in which the scariant is believed to have emerged, all four were fully vaccinated against COVID-19. So much for the unvaccinated being “human petri dishes” brewing up new variants of SARS-CoV-2. As Geert Vanden Bossche has been pointing out for months, vaccination during an active pandemic drives the phenomenon known as viral immune escape, favouring the dominance of strains of the virus with mutations that evade vaccine-induced immunity.
And you wouldn’t want to listen to a doctor in South Africa who has actually treated patients infected with the Omicron scariant and who describes their symptoms as “very, very mild”, with none requiring hospitalisation.
And you absolutely, categorically would never want to give air time to a Russian virologist (based at the Gamaleya Research Institute of Epidemiology and Microbiology which produced the Russian Sputnik V COVID-19 injection), who points out that there’s absolutely no evidence that the Omicron scariant is any more dangerous than previous variants – in fact, quite the contrary – and that its high mutation load could actually spell the end of the pandemic:
“We already see Omicron has many mutations, more than Delta. More than thirty-thousand in a single gene of its spike protein. This is too many, and it means the virus has an unstable genome. As a rule, this sort of infectious agent becomes less dangerous, because evolutionarily, an overwhelming number of mutations leads to a weakening of the virus’s ability to cause disease.”
So, what should be our response to the emergence of the Omicron scariant (aside from a giant yawn, that is)? Dr Angelique Coetzee, chair of the South African Medical Association and a practising GP based in Pretoria, has some sensible advice:
“It’s all speculation at this stage. It may be it’s highly transmissible, but so far the cases we are seeing are extremely mild… Maybe two weeks from now I will have a different opinion, but this is what we are seeing. So are we seriously worried? No. We are concerned and we watch what’s happening. But for now we’re saying, ‘OK: there’s a whole hype out there. [We’re] not sure why.’”
While you’re waiting for some actual science to emerge rather than the fear-porn peddled by the presstitutes, bollockticians and corruptocrats, you could always play anagrams with the name of the new scariant – “I C moron” and “moronic” are my personal favourites – or learn the Greek alphabet and speculate about what happened to Nu and Xi. Y’all have fun now!