COVID-19 And The Casualty Of Truth
Opinion|Apr 12, 2022

COVID-19 And The Casualty Of Truth

We Might Accept The Need For A Government, But Not One That Ruins Our Lives.
David Leyonhjelm

In World War I it was said that the first casualty of war is truth. If judged by the extent to which truth has been abandoned, you could be forgiven for likening COVID to a war. In the name of protecting us from a disease that’s a moderate risk to the obese and elderly, but less risky than influenza to almost everyone else, our rights were trashed and lives upended. 

As for truth, hearing the full story and being free to contest the conclusions, forget it. Anything at odds with the government narrative is censored or suppressed. The good guys embrace the government and its message; the bad guys are the enemy aliens, contradicting that message and spreading misinformation. 

Think about how many times the official story has turned out to be wrong, but you never heard about it because neither the mainstream media nor social media would allow it. 

In late 2019 the World Health Organization praised China for its “rapid and transparent” handling of the new virus, which originated from wet markets and eating pangolins. Suggesting the virus might have leaked from a virus research laboratory in Wuhan was enough to get you cancelled or, if Chinese, disappeared and never seen again. 

In early 2020 the disease hit northern Italy, probably due to the movement of Chinese workers, and hospitals were overwhelmed. The Italian health system was always perilously close to capacity, but did you hear anyone say that?

Italy took its lead from China and locked people in their homes, becoming a template for other countries including Australia. But don’t mention Sweden, which avoided all coercion including lockdowns, with no higher deaths and minimal economic harm.  

Models predicting tens of millions of cases and millions of deaths were used to justify massive coercion. The Great Barrington Declaration, which argued that protection should be limited to the elderly and other vulnerable groups, was banned from social media. In the UK, the elderly died in nursing homes while idle hospital nurses performed TikTok dances. Australia locked down for two weeks to flatten the curve, then for months to eliminate the virus. All of it based on “health advice” that was never disclosed. Nursing home residents died anyway, and none of the models were remotely accurate. 

A diet of misinformation and half-truths has its consequences; anything the government says is viewed with suspicion

The truth never applied to COVID statistics either. A positive test was a case, irrespective of symptoms, and anyone who died after testing positive was a COVID death even if they fell off a ladder. Suggestions that excess deaths were a better measure were ignored or ridiculed. 

President Trump speculated that hydroxy chloroquine might be a useful therapeutic, prompting anti-Trumpers to become virologists and disagree. Dexamethasone, which he didn’t mention, was praised despite its limited value. Ivermectin, which saved many lives in countries like India and Peru, still cannot be openly discussed. I was threatened with prosecution by the TGA for posting a picture of an ivermectin horse product on Twitter.  

When the vaccines arrived far sooner than expected, President Trump’s Operation Warp Speed got no credit. As candidates, Biden and Harris both expressed doubt about any vaccine in which Trump had been involved. Once they were elected, getting vaccinated was all that mattered. 

Not only will it protect us from catching the virus, we were told, but it will prevent us from transmitting the virus to others and killing Granny. What we never heard, until it became impossible to ignore, was that the vaccines do not prevent infection, do not stop transmission, and only reduce the severity of symptoms for a few weeks. Governments nonetheless made vaccination mandatory in certain occupations and a condition of entry elsewhere. Based on undisclosed health advice, of course. 

And good luck discovering the full story on vaccine side effects. How many suffered blood clots from the AstraZeneca vaccine, or myocarditis from the Pfizer and Moderna mRNA vaccines, and what were their recovery rates? We could make an informed decision for ourselves if we knew. How novel would that be? 

And then there’s masks. At first, the WHO and always flexible Dr Fauci both said they don’t stop respiratory viruses. Then they should be mandatory. Then that two are needed. 

Now, the Centre for Disease Control says that while N95 masks might reduce transmission, cloth masks are useless. 

But it was too late – masks have become the bunny rug of the pandemic. Too many people cannot bear to live without them. A diet of misinformation and half-truths has its consequences; anything the government says is viewed with suspicion. Respect has been replaced with contempt. A Nuremburg type trial, with a jury, would result in many public health officials and key politicians being sentenced to death for crimes against humanity. 

Most of us accept the need for a government of some kind, but we don’t need a government that destroys our lives, removes our rights, and treats us like children incapable of handling the truth. That’s true even in a war. And the COVID pandemic is not a war. 

Illustration by Josh Spencer.