Public Health Establishment’s COVID Flip-Flops Should Immunize Against Its Politicization

By Benjamin Weingarten
Benjamin Weingarten
Benjamin Weingarten
Ben Weingarten is deputy editor for RealClearInvestigations. He is a senior contributor to The Federalist, columnist at Newsweek, and a contributor to the New York Post and The Epoch Times, among other publications. Subscribe to his newsletter at
January 18, 2022Updated: January 18, 2022


What does it tell us that the medical establishment is now daily taking positions on significant matters relating to the Chinese coronavirus that its allies in Big Tech used to censor people over—many of which we have known the truth of since early in the pandemic?

It tells us that while The Science has in large part remained the same, the politics have shifted to such an extent in the face of the Omicron variant that the authorities feel compelled to recognize reality.

That is, it shows us that the “Trust The Science” crowd is—as should have been clear from the jump—political, and that it has invoked its favored line to end debate; to ensure the public submit to its edicts based on a “Science” that brooks no dissent.

Presenting select data, and without nuance, context, or balance, that distorted the public’s view of the threat—at bare minimum as reflected in Americans’ gross over-estimation of the Chinese coronavirus’s fatality across age cohorts under 65—and justified its draconian responses to it, suppressing countervailing evidence, and smearing and silencing those who present it is, of course, the height of anti-Scientific behavior.

Seen in this light, the Omicron variant is proving doubly beneficial: To the extent it remains as mild as all evidence to date suggests, it’s conferring some level of widespread immunity; at the same time, it’s exposing public health’s hyper-politicization by causing it to contradict that which it previously held sacrosanct, hopefully immunizing the public to such politicization.

Yet the unwillingness of the public health establishment to reverse its support for the most coercive, immoral, and arguably illegal policies, like vaccine mandates, at the very time the stated primary public health rationale—stopping the spread—has been rendered moot by the authorities’ own admission, indicates how dug in they may be. This only further exposes that politics and power, not public health, are paramount.

When total control over society is rooted in The Science, The Science collapses, but the control persists, it’s clear control was the point. It’s clear Science is a political faith.

The public health establishment is presently being exposed—in fact exposing itself in its rhetorical about-face—as being as corrupted at its top ranks as the Deep State did in pursuing President Donald Trump, and now his tens of millions of supporters. This corruption has implicated, been exploited by, and/or corrupted a slew of actors, as Russiagate did, including among them politicians, the media, the courts, Big Pharma, and the Woke-Industrial Complexto devastating effect for American life, limb, and liberty.

As with the Deep State, Trump’s mere existence drew out the public health establishment’s politicization. Its hostility toward him was evident during the throes of a pandemic used above all else against him in an election year.

That hostility manifested itself in a number of ways, but perhaps most notably in (i) the dismissal of the Wuhan lab leak theory—the sordid backstory of which continues to be revealed to this day; and (ii) the dismissal of over-the-counter, early treatment remedies—potentially at the cost of thousands of lives based upon the successes of doctors in America and around the world with generic drug cocktails. The cost of subordinating all to the vaccines has only been exacerbated as their efficacy has proven to wane, and arguably as we see shortages in the less-emphasized areas of testing devices and alternative treatments.

In recent weeks, the reality that Science is often a stand-in for Politics has further revealed itself.

We have seen definitive proof that there was a concerted effort by NIAID Director Anthony Fauci and NIH Director Francis Collins to run a smear campaign against the Great Barrington Declaration, and its eminent drafters, Harvard’s Martin Kulldorf, Oxford’s Sunetra Gupta, and Stanford’s Jay Bhattacharya. Those doctors had the gall in the eyes of the public health establishment to challenge mass lockdowns in favor of protecting those most at-risk and allowing others to resume normal lives as of fall 2020.

Our authorities of course did the opposite: They endangered the at-risk in nursing homes, while locking down everyone else but the privileged social justice warriors, causing untold calamities for Americans’ health, well-being, prosperity, liberty, and justice.

We have also seen further definitive proof (pdf) in recent days that Drs. Fauci and Collins were aware of the merits of the Wuhan lab leak theory soon after the onset of the pandemic, but for evidently political reasons, chose not to pursue it. We already knew about the reflexive dismissal of a lab leak by not just the medical establishment, but virtually every other establishment once Trump and senior administration officials embraced it. We now know public health officials had another rationale for rejecting the thesis: To appease the most culpable party in the COVID-19 pandemic, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). That is the very CCP of course that under NIH’s direction, America had effectively collaborated with on potentially dangerous gain-of-function research at the Wuhan Institute of Virology of the kind that could have led to this pandemic—though the NIH is adamant it did not.

Now, consider some of the things we’ve seen public health authorities and their mouthpieces flip-flop on—again, to positions that used to get people banned on Facebook and Twitter.

They now admit as we’ve long known that cloth masks do little if anything but serve to virtue-signal.

They now admit that substantial percentages of the very small number of children hospitalized are hospitalized with rather than from COVID-19—a distinction previously verboten in public discourse—and that likewise substantial percentages of the hospitalized generally are hospitalized with rather than from COVID-19.

They also admit they don’t have an accurate count of how many deaths during the pandemic were with versus from COVID-19—both an acknowledgment again of a crucial distinction of which we previously could not speak, and an inadvertent admission of an unwillingness or inability borne of either politics, or incompetence, to accurately record COVID deaths.

They now tell us openly—as the CDC more quietly acknowledged months ago—that the vaccines neither prevent infection nor transmission, and particularly so with Omicron, which again has rendered the vaccines even less efficacious than authorities implicitly admitted when they started endorsing boosters.

They’ve changed the definitions of “vaccine” and “vaccinated” as it’s been clear that the vaccines don’t immunize people, a move smacking of politics. Remember, they had initially argued vaccines would prevent infection and transmission. We were all in this together. Today, claims are far humbler: Vaccines will prevent severe sickness and death, which of course is not wholly true since some vaccinated individuals do get hospitalized, and some do die, though disproportionately those suffering from four-plus comorbidities. That the vast majority of people who have died with COVID in general have suffered from comorbidities, and on average four “additional conditions or causes,” is something that has also been clear for much of the pandemic, yet rarely if ever noted by authorities.

They have also signaled they’re going to change the definition of fully vaccinated—at least by default—once again, an indicator of their failure, and the ever-shifting goal posts.

They have changed the quarantine length subsequent to infection in a move seemingly driven by economics over Science.

They’ve flipped on schools, now acknowledging how devastating closures have been, when we’ve known from almost the very beginning that kids are exceedingly safer from COVID-19 than other age cohorts, and that locking them out would be crippling for children and their families.

Why the flurry of flip-flops?

Occam’s Razor suggests Omicron has exposed to all the inefficacy of the lockdowns, the mandates, and the vaccines authorities promised would serve as a panacea. Even the “sophisticated, vaccinated crowd” wasn’t spared from this latest variant.

So, in part, this may be an act of face-saving: Better to acknowledge undeniable facts over wholly continuing a COVID charade that would only do further harm to the authorities’ credibility.

But there’s something deeper at play as well.

Candidate Joe Biden said, during the 2020 campaign, while America had suffered 220,000 deaths ascribed to COVID that “anyone who is responsible for that many deaths should not remain as president of the United States of America.” He’s now responsible for a multiple of that.

There were surprise Republican wins or near-wins in COVID control-crushed blue states during the 2021 elections, and Democrats are poised to face a shellacking in the midterm elections as of this writing.

The likes of radically progressive Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot even went after the Chicago Teachers Union over its putatively COVID-related walkout.

It’s evident millions are sick and tired of policies that have self-evidently not worked, while breeding poverty and misery, and that a revolt may be brewing.

Hence, now the effort to downplay the high-level numbers once hocked—even terminating death figure reporting altogether; the shift to an “endemic” stage; and an effort to get off of hysteria footing—at least rhetorically.

The authorities are caught between a rock and a hard place as the actual science doesn’t comport with their control—and renders it farcical—but the imperative to control remains.

It should be clear now that when you hear “Trust the Science,” you should run. And then vote out the people who have ceded our life and liberty to public health technocrats and their adjuncts, and for those who will restore our, liberty, justice, and sanity.

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

Related Topics