Let the Great Covid Reckoning Begin
Readers of The Pipeline will be familiar with The Great Barrington Declaration, an early (October 2020) response to the Covid pandemic policies of various governments. Here are its conclusions:
The most compassionate approach that balances the risks and benefits of reaching herd immunity, is to allow those who are at minimal risk of death to live their lives normally to build up immunity to the virus through natural infection, while better protecting those who are at highest risk. We call this Focused Protection.
Adopting measures to protect the vulnerable should be the central aim of public health responses to COVID-19. By way of example, nursing homes should use staff with acquired immunity and perform frequent testing of other staff and all visitors. Staff rotation should be minimized. Retired people living at home should have groceries and other essentials delivered to their home. When possible, they should meet family members outside rather than inside. A comprehensive and detailed list of measures, including approaches to multi-generational households, can be implemented, and is well within the scope and capability of public health professionals.
Those who are not vulnerable should immediately be allowed to resume life as normal. Simple hygiene measures, such as hand washing and staying home when sick should be practiced by everyone to reduce the herd immunity threshold. Schools and universities should be open for in-person teaching. Extracurricular activities, such as sports, should be resumed. Young low-risk adults should work normally, rather than from home. Restaurants and other businesses should open. Arts, music, sport and other cultural activities should resume. People who are more at risk may participate if they wish, while society as a whole enjoys the protection conferred upon the vulnerable by those who have built up herd immunity.
The authors of that declaration—stunningly correct in its conclusions and widely disparage by the totalitarian Left—have recently re-formed as the Norfolk Group with the mission of investigating Covid responses now widely seen as mistaken.
America’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic failed on many levels of government and in many aspects. Certainly, deaths are unavoidable during a pandemic. However, too many U.S. policy makers concentrated efforts on ineffective or actively harmful and divisive measures such as school closures that generated enormous societal damage without significantly lowering COVID-19 mortality, while failing to protect high-risk Americans. As a result, Americans were hard hit both by the disease and by collateral damage generated by misguided pandemic strategies and decisions that ignored years of pandemic preparation guidance crafted by numerous public health agencies, nationally and internationally.
Written by experts in epidemiology, vaccine development, and biomedical statistics at leading medical institutions (Harvard, Oxford, Stanford), the Declaration was a statement of risk mitigation by scientists whose professional lives have been spent doing exactly that in the field of infectious disease. The Norfolk Group is making the reasonable point that, as we do for major catastrophes in every field, we must investigate what “went wrong” in our reaction to Covid. Nowhere in the literature, for example, were national lockdowns for respiratory diseases recommended prior to the outbreak of Covid-19. Even Anthony Fauci noted, in response to China’s lockdowns in early 2020, that, “…historically when you shut things down it doesn’t have a major effect.”
Unfortunately the Great Barrington recommendations were rejected out of hand, perhaps because they did not advance the objectives of the ruling classes. Consequently, thousands (millions?) of lives were ended unnecessarily, the economy was imperiled, suicide and drug overdose rates skyrocketed, and a generation of schoolchildren had their intellectual and social developments stunted by means of a useless masking and social distancing regime. The negative impacts of these policies are becoming increasingly clear, and will be with us for generations. It's time for some serious payback.
Ultimately, the Centers for Disease Control begrudgingly and belatedly adopted many of the protocols: focus on the vulnerable, end the lockdowns, and allow those least at risk the freedom our government exists to protect. Masking is now recognized as ineffective (even by the New York Times!), school closures and social distancing of no value, and putting the world under house arrest did nothing to reduce the spread of the virus.
Had the authorities been interested in addressing the pandemic, the declaration at least would have been up for discussion when it was released. Instead, when it wasn't being ignored and its text censored, it was being ridiculed by our public health "authorities." This lack of transparency is among the most-criticized failures of the government's response to Covid. Transparency is at the heart of the mission of the Norfolk Group.
One must wonder whether, had the recommendations of the position paper been adopted, would the mandating of the vaccines that seem mainly to have led to illness, increased cases and deaths and suppressed immune systems, have been considered necessary? Had those not at a higher risk from Covid than they were from influenza been allowed to interact, would herd immunity (which mainstream health authorities are now admitting is superior) have occurred years ago, saving untold lives?
A Truth and Reconciliation Commission is urgently called for—minus the "reconciliation," of course. Fauci should be ignominiously stripped of his pensions, the hopelessly inept Rochelle Walensky of the CDC should be summarily fired. The state governors who willfully violated the First Amendment should be recalled (if not gone already) and disqualified from voting or ever holding public office again. But it will never happen.
Why? Because from the perspective of our cultural elites, nothing "went wrong" at all. You got what was coming to you. Now it's time to return the favor.