Dr. Jay and Rav have released a major new podcast episode breaking down the metastasizing censorship industrial complex that grew throughout the Covid-19 pandemic. They break down the censorship regime point-by-point, examining several egregious cases exposing the corruption in social media and government agencies.
The end of the podcast features a bonus Q+A lead by new Illusion of Consensus team member Sam Szijjarto (who will be taking on various technical and administrative duties on a volunteer basis till we can afford official new hires).
The highlighted transcript will be available tomorrow. Copied below are detailed podcast show notes prepared by Dr. Jay. As mentioned at the end of the show, please consider signing up as a paid subscriber to support our work and get access to our two upcoming Q+A sessions in the next four-five weeks:
— The Illusion of Consensus Team
Censorship Podcast Notes
Overview: Throughout the pandemic, opponents of lockdowns, school closures, mask mandates, vaccine mandates, and other pandemic restrictions have felt the decks have been stacked against them in sharing their message on social media, especially Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, and YouTube.
Early pandemic censorship
Zuckerburg email to Fauci offering to help
Aaron Ginn and AJ Kay censorship in March / April 2020. They both argued a hypothesis that Covid had spread more widely than public health realized and that the infection fatality rate was likely lower than the case fatality rate. Medium censored their essays for being dangerous for public health.
In April 2020, I went on NPR to explain the results of our Santa Clara study. The reporter asked me if I was worried that people would intentionally seek out getting Covid (e.g. covid parties).
In late April/May 2020, I gave an interview where I mentioned that contact tracing was largely useless given the mode and ease of spread of Covid. The Stanford human subjects review board – for a study that had nothing to do with contact tracing – mentioned this interview as a potential human subjects violation in a bid to silence me.
In 2020, doctors based in Ontario, Canada who wrote about natural immunity on twitter (e.g. Dr. Kulvinder Gill) faced censure from medical boards with risk of losing license.
Heavy censorship of early treatment options in online settings. Discussion about whether this was appropriate. Some of the early results for cheap, safe drugs were promising. Why not let people try them for a disease that was deadly in older people?
The clear purpose of these censorship efforts was to create fear in the population and gain compliance regarding lockdown orders.
Censorship of the Great Barrington Declaration:
GBD signed on October 2020
Collins email to Fauci / “fringe epidemiologists” / devastating takedown
WHO says no such thing as herd immunity
Google deboosted search results / hit pieces came first
Facebook took down the GBD page for a week without explanation
Reddit slapped down accounts mentioning the GBD and limited discussion of it.
Censorship and Propaganda in 2021
With the advent of the vaccine, propaganda and censorship efforts by governments intensified.
Government officials vastly overstated the results of the clinical trials re: infection blocking. This included Fauci, Walensky, etc.
Governments engaged celebrities. FB highilghted posts of young attractive people bragging about getting vaccinated early, even while millions of older people who would have benefited more did not get a vaccine until late.
DeSantis Roundtable March 2021. Masking children. Youtube pulls the video
Severe censorship of vaccine discussion online (e.g. Alex Berenson on effectiveness of the vaccine vs. disease spread; Naomi Wolf on menstrual problems caused by the vax)
Twitter files -> blacklist
Government Role in Censorship
As 2021 rolled on, the vaccine campaign fizzled out. The government turned to censorship and mandates to fix the problem.
Berenson case: government officials such as Andy Slavitt directly wrote to Twitter to ban Alex.
Missouri vs. Biden. Dozen federal agencies involved in the censorship effort, including the White House, CDC, Office of the Surgeon General. The government threatened section 230 status. Direct line of communication from White House to twitter, FB regarding censorship. Topics inlcuded true facts (e.g. ineffectiveness of vaccine at blocking infection).
Even the White House itself got caught up in censorship.
Censorship efforts often informed by Stanford virality project & a “disinformation” team at the University of Washington
Use of AI algorithms, with word lists sent by the government, for widescale censorship
Roots of censorship apparatus linked to national security concerns. Obama signed “On Dec. 23, 2016, he signed into law the Countering Foreign Propaganda and Disinformation Act, which used the language of defending the homeland to launch an open-ended, offensive information war.”
Government as #1 source of misinformation
Indiana AG letter
Overcounting Covid cases
Questioning natural immunity
Covid vax prevents transmission
School closures effective and costless
Everone equally at risk of dying from covid infection
No policy alternative available to lockdown
Mask mandates effective in reducing Covid spread
Mass asymptomatic testing and contact tracing effective in reducing Covid spread
Eradication of Covid is a feasible goal.
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