How Beijing’s Pandemic Narratives Influenced Western Actions in Curbing the Spread of COVID-19

Mimicking China's methods for controlling the disease was a serious mistake
December 28, 2021 Updated: December 31, 2021


Clichés and euphemisms are useful tools for Marxists and other garden variety leftists to shape public policy. Endless repeated catchy phrases help convey a sense of “progress” and newness in pushing leftist political objectives and solutions.

Communists the world over have added political phrases galore to an ever-expanding lexicon of balderdash over the decades. Some examples include the following:

  • Workers of the world, unite.
  • Occupy the factories.
  • Abolish alienation.
  • Abolish class society.
  • Peaceful coexistence.
  • Live and let live.
  • From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs.
  • All political power comes from the barrel of a gun.
  • Communism is not love; communism is a hammer which we use to crush the enemy.

Those last two quotes are from former Chinese Communist Party (CCP) leader Mao Zedong, who regularly used slogans as a means of propagandizing his underlings and the masses.

And today, the CCP is at the forefront in ginning up meaningless phrases that sound good but advance CCP causes, for example, whole-process people’s democracy, socialism with Chinese characteristics, shared future, common development, among other things. A particularly execrable claim is that the CCP has a “spiritual legacy,” as noted by state-run China Daily. A legacy of evil spirits maybe, but that of course is not what the communists meant!

All of these euphemisms and phrases intend to advance political objectives and to marginalize opponents. A key CCP political objective is to convey that China is a world leader in all human endeavors.

A particular focus on Chinese leadership relates to control of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. The attendant messages include: China’s response to the virus demonstrates world leadership, China’s strict lockdown strategy worked, Chinese social distancing and use of masks worked, the China vaccine strategy worked, Chinese benevolence in providing medical supplies to other countries is leading the world, etc.

Fear of the virus was interwoven with the propaganda to amplify the claimed success of China’s “virus leadership,” with the message being “the virus is very deadly and contagious, but the total society response orchestrated by the CCP is the model for the world.”

The constant propagandizing of these messages and claims by state-run Chinese media and diplomats was picked up and repeated by China-sympathetic Western media and leftist politicians around the world over the past two years.

Many governments implemented social distancing, mask mandates, vaccine mandates, and lockdowns that were modeled on the authoritarian methods implemented by China, which claims to this very day a grand total of 4,636 Chinese deaths from the virus—a number that has not changed since May 2020, as compiled and maintained by Worldometers. And that number MUST NOT change if the propaganda narrative that China has “defeated the virus” is to retain credibility and influence.

Epoch Times Photo
The title screen of a propaganda program called “How Xi Jinping Led China’s COVID-19 Battle,” from the CGTN archive, is seen as it plays on a computer monitor in London, England, on Feb. 04, 2021. (Leon Neal/Getty Images)

However, politically-motivated phrases, slogans, and euphemisms frequently have expiration dates or, rather, dates beyond which their propaganda values for political purposes are “counterproductive.” Exposure of the truth that disproves the claim is the leading factor in determining expiration dates. And a number of phrases and slogans enabling the authoritarians in the West to implement virus control measures identical to those touted by China have already passed their expiration dates.

Let us examine some of the widely disseminated virus-related claims made by “government experts” (an oxymoron if there ever was one) and repeated endlessly by the legacy media echo chamber during the virus panic over the last two years.

15 Days to Slow the Spread

At the recommendation of government public health authorities, especially Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and the president’s chief medical adviser, President Donald Trump issued the first national guidelines on March 16, 2020, recommending that Americans should “stay home for about two weeks” in an effort to contain the spread of the virus.

Many governors, particular in blue states, took that as a signal to implement a series of lockdown measures and social distancing mandates, which have had questionable effectiveness not just in the United States but also in Europe, as this study reported by the Swiss Policy Research Foundation on Dec. 23 headlined (emphasis added): Austria, one of the most repressive European countries during the coronavirus pandemic, has recently overtaken Sweden in terms of total covid mortality, showing that almost all government interventions have been ineffective and unjustified.”

2 Weeks to Flatten the Curve

This is a variation on the preceding theme. Flatten the curve relates to the graphing of new virus cases and deaths with/from the virus over time. Supposedly, the lockdowns and stay-at-home measures would prevent escalating cases and deaths in the future and keep the associated time-series curves “flat.”

A grossly underreported fact that has been virtually ignored by federal health authorities and the legacy media is that U.S. deaths attributed to the virus in 2021 exceeded the total deaths in 2020. So much for the phrases that initiated the authoritarian lockdowns in early 2020 that disrupted people’s lives and businesses.

A Vaccine Prevents Infection

A vaccine today isn’t the vaccine your mother told you about! Most people understood the traditional definition of a vaccine because they had received several over their lives and were told what to expect by their doctors.

Before 2015, a vaccine meant a killed or weakened virus introduced into the body to prevent a disease (which was why they were once called “immunizations”). The definition was modified in 2015 to “the act of introducing a vaccine into the body to produce immunity to a specific disease,” with the word “immunity” suspiciously being changed to “protection” in 2021, according to the Miami Herald.

Were people purposely fooled into taking the various COVID-19 vaccines because they believed they were being “immunized” against the virus according to the old definition? Because there are plenty of news stories about the (in)effectiveness of the various mRNA injections and the need for “boosters” on a seemingly ever-decreasing periodicity.

Here is one such media report summarizing a recent study: “A Harvard study of 68 nations and 2,947 counties in the United States published in the European Journal of Epidemiology is shattering the argument that the mRNA therapeutic drugs being marketed as ‘vaccines’ do anything significantly to stop the spread of Covid-19.”

A Pandemic of the Unvaccinated

This is the latest fear-mongering phrase from those pushing mRNA injection mandates, claiming without evidence that all new cases are being spread by “the unvaccinated.”

The definition of “the unvaccinated” seems to change every day. First, it referred to anyone who had not gotten a first injection. Then, it referred to those who had not received a recommended booster (one could have gotten the initial injection, but would be considered to be “unvaccinated” for not having received the booster).

Now, with studies showing that the injections lose effectiveness in a few short months or less, an endless series of boosters is being forecasted as a requirement in order to be “fully vaccinated.”

The definition is like shifting sands and changes after each expiration date is achieved! In addition, studies have shown that vaccinated people themselves have spread the virus to others, and that large numbers of previously injected people have been subsequently infected by virus variants over the past few months.

Fully Vaccinated

See above for the changing definition of what it means to be “vaccinated” according to rapidly changing federal health guidelines. No one ever predicted in early 2020 that multiple booster shots would be deemed necessary over time. Virtually everyone who received the first injection believed they were being immunized against the virus.

Is it a stretch to imagine boosters being recommended monthly at some point in the future? “Fully vaccinated” is another political weapon used to control behavior to which people are becoming wise.

Asymptomatic People Spread the Virus

Medical authorities have insisted that asymptomatic people can spread the SARS-CoV-2 virus, as noted here and here. Yet, there have been studies such as this one and this one that have been buried that determined that asymptomatic transmission were rare “if occurring at all.”

However, it is quite interesting that the NFL’s chief medical officer, Dr. Allen Sills, claimed on Dec. 24 that the recent spread of the virus among NFL players is not due to players who are asymptomatic: “I think all of our concern about [asymptomatic spread] has been going down based on what we’ve been seeing throughout the past several months. … [W]hat I can say to you is that I think it’s a very, very tiny fraction of the overall problem, if it exists at all.”

Sills knows the truth from direct experience, it would appear.

Epoch Times Photo
Los Angeles Rams’ Brandon Powell flips into the end zone during a 61-yard punt return for a touchdown in the second half of an NFL football game against the Minnesota Vikings in Minneapolis, on Dec. 26, 2021. (Bruce Kluckhohn/AP Photo)

The Vaccines Have No Adverse Effects

Federal health authorities such as Dr. Fauci have maintained that the mRNA COVID-19 vaccines are “safe and effective” since their emergency use authorizations (EUAs) were first granted in December 2020 to Pfizer and Moderna.

However, key points from Dr. Joseph Mercola’s analysis of the CDC’s Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System Data (VAERS) as it relates to mRNA vaccines dispute that claim in spades:

  • “Data suggest 1 in 317 boys aged 16 to 17 will get myocarditis from the COVID shots, and after a third booster, that number may be even higher.”
  • “VAERS reporting is likely underreported by a factor of 41. Since there are over 8,000 domestic deaths reported to VAERS, and 98% of those deaths are ‘excess deaths,’ this suggests that as many as 300,000 Americans may have died from the COVID shots thus far.”
  • “The deadliest vaccine ever made is the smallpox vaccine, which killed 1 in 1 million vaccinated people. The COVID shots kills 822 per million fully vaccinated, making it more than 800 times deadlier than the deadliest vaccine in human history.”

No wonder the mRNA injections are only provisional under the FDA’s emergency use authorizations—because the lawsuits would be flying if the FDA had fully authorized their use and removed the legal protections granted under EUA approval!

Super-Spreader Events

This politically-charged phrase was all the rage in leftist circles in the United States during the 2020 presidential campaign. Legacy media reporters consistently claimed that large gatherings of Trump supporters and others were accelerating the spread of the virus and its variants.

The term super-spreader event was applied to all Trump rallies, patriotic events such as Fourth of July parades, boat rallies in support of Trump, and even the annual motorcycle rally in Sturgis, South Dakota. Except that the massive explosion of new cases did not happen as predicted. The phrase cannot be politically exploited by the Democrat media via their media echo chamber anymore and is rarely, if ever, used these days except at places like the Poynter Institute.

The Zoonotic Theory Is Correct

Since early 2020, the CCP has claimed that the virus originated in animals and was passed to humans most likely in a Wuhan wet market (the “zoonotic theory”).

Chinese propaganda has subsequently been laser focused on obfuscating the origins of the virus, with the “denial and blame-shifting about the virus origins [that] has continued unabated in Chinese state-run media from early 2020 to the present day,” as previously noted by The Epoch Times.

That article also noted: “The WSJ reported that the CGG-CGG amino acid sequence found in the virus is manmade and can only have been inserted through gain-of-function research, as the CGG-CGG sequence is not found in nature.”

There is zero evidence of the zoonotic theory and increasing evidence of a laboratory leak of a bioengineered virus.

This phrase has passed its expiration date, too!

Epoch Times Photo
The P4 laboratory on the campus of the Wuhan Institute of Virology in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China, on May 13, 2020. (Hector Retamal/AFP via Getty Images)

Masks Work!

The wearing of masks was mandated without any clinical studies demonstrating their effectiveness. As reported in August, Dr. Francis Collins, the now-former director of the National Institute of Health, admitted in an interview with Hugh Hewitt that school mask mandates are not based on science.

It gets worse. As reported by Life Site News, there have been “47 studies confirming that masks are useless in preventing Covid infection and transmission.” Furthermore, there have been “32 studies confirming the negative health effects caused by frequent mask wearing, especially for young children,” including increased incidence of bacterial diseases and adverse psychological effects due to long-term use.

In short, mask mandates are not scientifically based. Was it medical malpractice for Collins, Fauci, and the rest to have buried these studies on the wearing of masks?

Vaccine Passports Work!

Well, no, they don’t, according to experts from Spain’s inter-regional COVID-19 committee, who “have concluded that Covid passports are ineffective in terms of reducing infection, and may even be sending out the dangerous message that being vaccinated means a person cannot spread the virus,” according to The Telegraph.

Check out the 9:22 a.m. log entry at The Telegraph for the details, as the study applies to other European countries, too.

Yet, despite the science, U.S. authorities and others are feverishly planning for the implementation of vaccine passports for air travel and commerce-related activities.

What happened to the omnipresent leftist slogan of “trust the science”?

Children Must Be Vaccinated!

U.S. federal health authorities have been pushing mRNA injections for children of increasingly younger ages, with Dr. Fauci again leading the charge as reported by CNBC here: “I do believe … that we should vaccinate the children, and there are a number of reasons.” Except that, once again, he is wrong.

A major study recently completed in Germany shows that there have been ZERO deaths due to the virus among healthy children: “[N]ot one healthy child in Germany from ages 5 to 18 died of COVID-19 during the first 15 months of the pandemic.”

And never mind the increasing reports of myocarditis and other adverse reactions in teenagers receiving the injections, with even the CDC reporting that myocarditis risks are “higher than expected.”

Meanwhile, as reported by Dr. Robert Malone, the inventor of the mRNA technology used in the vaccines, over 16,000 physicians and medical scientists around the world have signed a declaration publicly declaring that healthy children should NOT be vaccinated for COVID-19.

The general population is starting to figure out the dangers, too, as lawsuits continue to stop local school vaccine mandates in several states and counties in the United States.

China Has ‘Beaten the Virus’

Lastly, this prevailing myth has taken some major hits lately.

On Dec. 22, Chinese authorities locked down the northeast city of Xi’an and ordered all 13 million residents to stay home.

And an article from The Wall Street Journal summarizes other recent events that demonstrate that China has NOT “beaten the virus,” including locking tens of thousands of people inside Shanghai Disneyland, the closing of two schools in Beijing, Beijing residents reporting having been “sent to centralized quarantine or being locked in their homes” (with contact tracing sensors placed outside their doors!), etc.

On Dec. 24, China Daily reported some drastic medical preparations for the 2022 Winter Olympics to be held in Beijing: “The competition zones in Beijing and its Yanqing district have set up 88 medical stations for on-site medical treatment and triage of the sick and injured and have 1,140 medical staff members assigned from 17 designated hospitals and two emergency agencies.”

Do Chinese authorities still claim that China has “beaten the virus”? No one should believe them.


Leftist politicians and their legacy media allies adopted CCP narratives associated with false claims of successful Chinese responses to contain the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Those CCP narratives helped enable the authoritarian lockdowns and mandates that have crippled the world economy and destroyed millions of lives over the past two years.

The clichés, euphemisms, slogans, and phrases used as political weapons to psychologically influence and control people during the lockdowns and mandates have virtually all subsequently exceeded their expiration dates—for political expediency purposes—and have proven to be false.

Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.

Stu Cvrk
Stu Cvrk retired as a captain after serving 30 years in the U.S. Navy in a variety of active and reserve capacities, with considerable operational experience in the Middle East and the Western Pacific. Through education and experience as an oceanographer and systems analyst, Cvrk is a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, where he received a classical liberal education that serves as the key foundation for his political commentary.