It’s been a rough past few weeks for ‘America’s doctor.’ The COVID-19 pandemic - Dr. Anthony Fauci’s raison d'etre - is winding down, the whole country is perusing his FOIA’d emails, and some are even discussing whether his possible role in the gain of function research that may have started this whole mess in the first place could warrant criminal charges. Of course, given the sorry state of affairs in America today, it’s highly unlikely anything like that would ever happen, especially under a Biden administration ‘Justice’ Department.
It’s also unlikely that anything short of an on-camera puppy-slaying would cause Fauci’s near-cult-like status to suffer a blow among certain, shall we say, liberal segments of the population. No, despite the predictions of some on the right, don’t expect the Avenatti treatment for the Patron Saint of Wuhan, only continued veneration. Just like myths about the efficacy of masks and lockdowns, the left simply has too much invested to let go.
For almost everyone on the right, however, Fauci has certainly become an object of scorn and contempt, a symbol of all the things we got horribly wrong about COVID. And as more and more emails come to light - particularly about masking and gain of function research - our suspicions have only been confirmed. But beyond all those that have already been highlighted by Townhall and other sites, one particular email exchange stood out for me as a tragic example of what might have been had the ‘good’ doctor listened to solid advice sent on March 14, 2020, from an individual named Michael Betts.
From pages 2212-2213:
I wanted to convey an idea I had with regard to the coronavirus. It seems to me that trying to contain the virus as we are doing at present will be futile. Since the virus can be present for many days without a person having any symptoms, you would literally need to test everyone at the same time to determine who has it--an impossible task.
I have a different thought. We know that the virus is especially dangerous for the old and/or immunosuppressed. IMO we should be focusing all of our efforts on keeping that group from becoming infected. To do so that group should be encouraged to self-isolate, to limit their social interactions and other groups should be instructed to avoid them. Sort of a reverse-quarantine idea. All testing would be done within those groups and all groups would also be encouraged to continue with the hygienic suggestions they've already received.
The problem right now is that the media has created a panic. Last night my wife and I went to the local Whole Foods and many of the shelves were empty and healthy younger people were wearing masks. The message is not getting out that the virus is almost solely dangerous to the elderly and immunosuppressed. [Why aren't the demographics being released? That in itself could calm many people.] With my suggestion, exposures to them would be diminished, significantly reducing the number of deaths, as well as the potential impact on hospitals. Any person outside of that group that was severely affected could be identified and treated. Quarantining otherwise healthy people outside of those groups who finally demonstrate symptoms--like the NBA players--is ridiculous. They are likely to get the sniffles and have also already spread the virus. As long as they're not spreading it to the endangered group we should not worry about it. In sum, we need to isolate the vulnerable and realize that the mortality rate for people outside of that group is likely lower than the flu.
Of course, while this occurs we are working on finding treatments and vaccines. But sending home workers who have next to no likelihood of being significantly impacted by this virus is ridiculous. The virus hits hardest the old and infirm, two groups that are most likely NOT to even be in the workforce! To me, this solution is a lot simpler than what is being tried right now and is much more likely of success. To everyone besides the endangered group, this virus is literally less dangerous than the flu. There is no reason that anyone outside of the endangered group should have any concern at all and we need to make that clear. Please let me know what you think.
Take a minute to process this, because it’s quite significant. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the leader of the U.S. response to COVID-19, received the essence of what would later, after months of devastating lockdowns, become the Great Barrington Declaration - a strategy of “focused protection” sponsored by the American Institute for Economic Research and authored by University of Oxford epidemiologist Dr. Sunetra Gupta, Stanford professor Dr. Jay Bhattacharya, and Harvard epidemiologist Dr. Martin Kulldorff.
How much better off would America have been had we better isolated the vulnerable (hellooo, New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania!) and gained a quick herd immunity among the healthy? What if we had stifled the crippling fear that still exists in countless pockets even today by relaying the true statistics not only about who is vulnerable, but about how this virus isn’t nearly the statistical killer it was originally thought to be? What if we had focused on treatments early instead of divisive, worthless, and destructive non-pharmaceutical interventions like lockdowns and mask mandates?
So, what was Fauci’s response after receiving, in a single email, a clear dose of common sense that could have changed history for the better? A curt, “Thank you for your note.” But hey, at least the writer got a response, right? Which leads to questions about the identity of Betts himself, who seemingly had to be someone known by Fauci, one would reason, simply because he received a response in the first place. After all, the man must have been receiving thousands of emails per day and couldn’t possibly have had time to respond to every one, even with a quick answer.
Initially, I suspected the author to be the high-profile University of Pennsylvania researcher of the same name. However, that researcher quickly denied it when I asked via email, writing, “Sorry, you must have me confused with someone else. While I do know Dr. Fauci, I did not send him any emails on that day based on my records. I certainly never ascribed to the opinions proposed in the Great Barrington Declaration, and would not have promoted that view in any way.”
If that Michael Betts isn’t telling the truth, I have no way to know. The email address and signature information are redacted under code b 6, meaning: “Reveal information, including foreign government information, that would cause serious harm to relations between the United States and a foreign government, or to ongoing diplomatic activities of the United States.” Certainly, there is a price to pay for being a dissenter to the ‘established narrative’ on COVID response, and IF Betts did write the email but no longer feels that way - or even if he does but doesn’t want his career to suffer - there are strong reasons to deny, deny, deny. And yes, he could be telling the truth and someone ELSE named Michael Betts who was presumably known to Fauci could have written that email.
Either way, the point remains: Dr. Anthony Fauci received solid advice early on in the pandemic and chose to ignore it. As a result, the ‘cure’ was indeed worse than the disease and the country suffered - and is still suffering - exponentially more than it otherwise would have.
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