Sponsored Content
« Joy Behar: East Palestine Deserved What They Got Because They Voted For Trump | Main | NPR To Lay Off 10% of Staff In Cuts Equal to Those That Followed the 2008 Great Recession »
February 24, 2023

The New York Times Finally Covers the Cochrane Study Proving That Mask Mandates Did Nothing to Slow the Spread of Covid

Actually, I lied. The New York Times itself has still not acknowledged the Cochrane study. The only mention in their paper comes from a columnist, allegedly from the "center right" liberal NeverTrumper Bret Stephens. He operates independently and chooses his topics himself, of course.

I suppose the editors could kill his column -- but only at the risk of further exposing the Times as a woke indoctrination newsletter.

Ed Morrissey points out that not only has the New York Times not mentioned the study, but that the interview Stephens quotes is from February 5th. Quite a long time ago in the news business. And that interview, of course, was not conducted by a New York Times reporter. He had to go outside the "Paper of Record" to find reportage about the Cochrane Study because, once again, the New York Times has refused to cover it.

And why won't they cover it? Because the Cochrane Study is an impeccable meta-study of 78 other studies which has proven, once and for all, that masks did nothing to slow the spread of covid.

Nothing. Nothing.

Comparing regions in which mask mandates were imposed to regions where they were not imposed shows no difference whatsoever in the spread of covid.

Which Bret Stephens, alone at the New York Times, admits to its readers.

The most rigorous and comprehensive analysis of scientific studies conducted on the efficacy of masks for reducing the spread of respiratory illnesses -- including Covid-19 -- was published late last month. Its conclusions, said Tom Jefferson, the Oxford epidemiologist who is its lead author, were unambiguous.

"There is just no evidence that they" -- masks -- "make any difference," he told the journalist Maryanne Demasi. "Full stop."

But, wait, hold on. What about N-95 masks, as opposed to lower-quality surgical or cloth masks?

"Makes no difference -- none of it," said Jefferson.

What about the studies that initially persuaded policymakers to impose mask mandates?

"They were convinced by non-randomized studies, flawed observational studies."


These observations don't come from just anywhere. Jefferson and 11 colleagues conducted the study for Cochrane, a British nonprofit that is widely considered the gold standard for its reviews of health care data. The conclusions were based on 78 randomized controlled trials, six of them during the Covid pandemic, with a total of 610,872 participants in multiple countries. And they track what has been widely observed in the United States: States with mask mandates fared no better against Covid than those without.


[W]hen it comes to the population-level benefits of masking, the verdict is in: Mask mandates were a bust.

The leftwing media, as well as the technocratic non-elite which claims to be elite but constantly fucks everything up and is always catastrophically wrong about everything, claims that the difference between them and "mininformers" and "disinformation spreaders" and "conspiracy theorists" is that, even though they sometimes get things wrong (for "sometimes," read "always"), they are always quick and forthright about admitting their errors.

So: I'm sure you've noticed all the media and technocratic non-elite rushing to confess their errors? Remember, confessing errors is what they themselves say distinguish them from Disinformation Spreaders. If they don't confess their errors, they are Disinformation Spreaders and Conspiracy Theorists.

Have they confessed, then?

No, they haven't, and Bret Stephens tells them so in their own sorority newsletter.

Those skeptics who were furiously mocked as cranks and occasionally censored as "misinformers" for opposing mandates were right. The mainstream experts and pundits who supported mandates were wrong. In a better world, it would behoove the latter group to acknowledge their error, along with its considerable physical, psychological, pedagogical and political costs.

Don't count on it. In congressional testimony this month, Rochelle Walensky, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, called into question the Cochrane analysis's reliance on a small number of Covid-specific randomized controlled trials and insisted that her agency's guidance on masking in schools wouldn't change. If she ever wonders why respect for the C.D.C. keeps falling, she could look to herself, and resign, and leave it to someone else to reorganize her agency.

That, too, probably won't happen: We no longer live in a culture in which resignation is seen as the honorable course for public officials who fail in their jobs.

When the technocratic non-elite say "Trust the Science," do they actually mean trust the science? Or do they really mean "trust the technocratic non-elite's Public Relations Lies about what science is"?

It's the latter, obviously.

But the costs go deeper. When people say they "trust the science," what they presumably mean is that science is rational, empirical, rigorous, receptive to new information, sensitive to competing concerns and risks. Also: humble, transparent, open to criticism, honest about what it doesn't know, willing to admit error. The C.D.C.'s increasingly mindless adherence to its masking guidance is none of those things. It isn't merely undermining the trust it requires to operate as an effective public institution. It is turning itself into an unwitting accomplice to the genuine enemies of reason and science -- conspiracy theorists and quack-cure peddlers -- by so badly representing the values and practices that science is supposed to exemplify.

Stephens makes a point I'll just digest: The CDC claims that it's "Still Right" because if people had obeyed with 100% compliance rates -- you know, like Perfect Robots -- then, in that impossible hypothetical, masks may have worked So There You Science-Denier, The Science of Masking Is Sound.

Stephens points out that this is an insane hypothetical to claim vindication on. It's also entirely speculative. It's just like saying "If you just believe in masking enough the Masking God will send down Masking Angels from Masking Heaven to bat each covid virus away from the mask, then masks will work, but if you don't, the failure of the mask is due to your Sinful Questioning of the Science!" These "Science" Lovers would of course mock a religious person for saying that, but what they're saying is equally religious in nature.

Any government plan that starts with "Assume perfect compliance by the citizenry" must be immediately be scrapped and the person proposing it fired. Not only is this a completely impossible scenario, but it belies a thirst for authoritarian control, because only with hyper-Mao levels of control over the most quotidian, intimate aspects of citizen lives could you even begin to approach the conditions necessary for perfect compliance.

But that's how the CDC thinks, obviously.

That's how the entire Regime thinks. I hate to quote the Joker, but: "They're schemers."

Finally, he points out that the last justification -- this one offered by none other than Science Himself, Anthony Fauci -- is that masking is justified because it might make people "feel a little bit better" about walking around in public.

The last justification for masks is that, even if they proved to be ineffective, they seemed like a relatively low-cost, intuitively effective way of doing something against the virus in the early days of the pandemic. But "do something" is not science, and it shouldn't have been public policy.

Public policy? It was more than that -- it was a government-coerced mandate.

And the people who had the courage to say as much deserved to be listened to, not treated with contempt. They may not ever get the apology they deserve, but vindication ought to be enough.

No, vindication is not enough. Here Bret Stephens flaks for his employer and the leftwing Karen audience it serves, telling them it's okay, after all, that they're not going to apologize or admit their gross errors.

There is probably a lot more the government, media, and technocratic non-elite (TNE) got wrong, unfortunately:

This is the reporter/doctor who interviewed Tom Jefferson about the Cochrane Study:

She's also calling for a "truth commission" on covid:

When America faced the national tragedy of the Space Shuttle Challenger exploding in 1986, Congress created a commission with independent outside experts, including the Nobel Prize-winning physicist Richard Feynman. His iconic demonstration of a faulty O-ring made brittle in the cold as the cause of the Challenger disaster led to fundamental reforms at NASA.

The American people deserve a similar bipartisan, scientifically minded COVID-19 commission so the public-health disaster of the past three years is not repeated.

Due to insufficient protection of older people -- whose COVID-mortality risk is more than 1,000-fold higher than that of the young -- official counts attribute more than 1 million deaths to COVID in the United States and almost 7 million worldwide. Though people vehemently disagreed about the wisdom of lockdowns, school closures, vaccine mandates and discrimination, masks and so much else, there is near-universal agreement that what we did failed.

By early 2022, about 95% of Americans had contracted COVID despite the harsh countermeasures. A John Hopkins University meta-analysis concluded that lockdowns failed to contain the spread of COVID. At best, they temporarily protected the laptop class, who could work from home while being served by the working class.

This is a real read-the-whole thing article, but I can't quote it all. Hit the link to read more about the harms of the government mandated school closures and shutdowns.

Perhaps the most perplexing sin of the public-health establishment is that it abandoned an essential commitment to science. For instance, why did public-health authorities ignore clear scientific data that COVID infection-acquired immunity is stronger than vaccine-acquired immunity? Vaccine mandates forced many frontline workers -- heroes who contracted COVID early in the pandemic while doing essential work -- to choose between their careers and a vaccine that provides less protection than the natural immunity they already had. University presidents forced young male students, including those with excellent immunity from a prior COVID infection, to accept an elevated risk of myocarditis as the price of a college education.

Many, faced with these anti-scientific choices, will never trust public-health authorities or university scientists again, even on vital topics such as the necessity of traditional childhood vaccines.

One reason for the public-health establishment's systematic failure to arrive at correct answers to basic scientific questions is that the authorities sealed themselves off from outside criticism. Under the banner of combating "misinformation," government health agencies used their power to collaborate with social-media companies to control the public conversation about COVID science and policy.


With such a litany of failures, the American people deserve an honest COVID commission to evaluate the response and document all the errors as well as the few successes.

We deserve it, but we won't get it. The Technocratic Non-Elite has made too many errors to admit any of them. It has shown itself to be utterly incompetent and unfit to keep their jobs, and the entire class needs to be mass-fired. They may then re-interview to get their jobs back; obviously, a fraction of them are competent.

But the rest must be turned away to Seek Opportunities more in line with their lack of skill-set.

So they will not admit any errors.

They have decided upon their course of action in the wake of their epochal failures: They will simply deem anyone pointing out their murderous incompetence to be "disinformation spreaders," "conspiracy theorists," "RUSSIAN AGENTS," "racists," "transphobes," "haters," and "stochastic terrorists," and get their social media allies -- also heavily implicated in this series of apocalyptic failures -- to censor and deplatform them.

Then they'll contact their allies in the financial sector to debank them, and their allies in the DOJ to prosecute them and add them to terrorist watch-lists.

digg this
posted by Ace at 01:15 PM

| Access Comments

Recent Comments
Lurking Cheshirecat: "The Prussian Parrots are a hoot ..."

Mike Hammer, etc., etc.: "Funny clocks over there at HQ these days... ..."

Lurking Cheshirecat: "Almost ..."

Bulgaroctonus : "Yessss! Suck it, Sponge! ..."

Sock Monkey * Invictus maneo: "Yeet ..."

Bulgaroctonus : "1? ..."

2009Refugee : "They aren't students. The notion that they're anyt ..."

Archimedes: "[i]Naked Russian woman swimming in the arctic with ..."

A dude in MI: "Recruits now have a price list for visits, which s ..."

Notsothoreau: "I am dealing with these techs that are taking init ..."

Archimedes: "[i]Recruits now have a price list for visits, whic ..."

SFGoth: "I love watching kitteh rescue videos (if they surv ..."

Recent Entries

Polls! Polls! Polls!
Frequently Asked Questions
The (Almost) Complete Paul Anka Integrity Kick
Top Top Tens
Greatest Hitjobs

The Ace of Spades HQ Sex-for-Money Skankathon
A D&D Guide to the Democratic Candidates
Margaret Cho: Just Not Funny
More Margaret Cho Abuse
Margaret Cho: Still Not Funny
Iraqi Prisoner Claims He Was Raped... By Woman
Wonkette Announces "Morning Zoo" Format
John Kerry's "Plan" Causes Surrender of Moqtada al-Sadr's Militia
World Muslim Leaders Apologize for Nick Berg's Beheading
Michael Moore Goes on Lunchtime Manhattan Death-Spree
Milestone: Oliver Willis Posts 400th "Fake News Article" Referencing Britney Spears
Liberal Economists Rue a "New Decade of Greed"
Artificial Insouciance: Maureen Dowd's Word Processor Revolts Against Her Numbing Imbecility
Intelligence Officials Eye Blogs for Tips
They Done Found Us Out, Cletus: Intrepid Internet Detective Figures Out Our Master Plan
Shock: Josh Marshall Almost Mentions Sarin Discovery in Iraq
Leather-Clad Biker Freaks Terrorize Australian Town
When Clinton Was President, Torture Was Cool
What Wonkette Means When She Explains What Tina Brown Means
Wonkette's Stand-Up Act
Wankette HQ Gay-Rumors Du Jour
Here's What's Bugging Me: Goose and Slider
My Own Micah Wright Style Confession of Dishonesty
Outraged "Conservatives" React to the FMA
An On-Line Impression of Dennis Miller Having Sex with a Kodiak Bear
The Story the Rightwing Media Refuses to Report!
Our Lunch with David "Glengarry Glen Ross" Mamet
The House of Love: Paul Krugman
A Michael Moore Mystery (TM)
The Dowd-O-Matic!
Liberal Consistency and Other Myths
Kepler's Laws of Liberal Media Bias
John Kerry-- The Splunge! Candidate
"Divisive" Politics & "Attacks on Patriotism" (very long)
The Donkey ("The Raven" parody)
Powered by
Movable Type 2.64