An interview with Canadian pediatric infectious disease specialist Dr. Ari Joffe discussing a paper he recently released.
Q: You were a strong proponent of lockdowns initially but have since changed your mind. Why is that?
A: There are a few reasons why I supported lockdowns at first.
First, initial data falsely suggested that the infection fatality rate was up to 2-3%, that over 80% of the population would be infected, and modelling suggested repeated lockdowns would be necessary. But emerging data showed that the median infection fatality rate is 0.23%, that the median infection fatality rate in people under 70 years old is 0.05%, and that the high-risk group is older people especially those with severe co-morbidities. In addition, it is likely that in most situations only 20-40% of the population would be infected before ongoing transmission is limited (i.e., herd-immunity).
Second, I am an infectious diseases and critical care physician, and am not trained to make public policy decisions. I was only considering the direct effects of COVID-19 and my knowledge of how to prevent these direct effects. I was not considering the immense effects of the response to COVID-19 (that is, lockdowns) on public health and wellbeing.
Emerging data has shown a staggering amount of so-called ‘collateral damage’ due to the lockdowns. This can be predicted to adversely affect many millions of people globally with food insecurity [82-132 million more people], severe poverty [70 million more people], maternal and under age-5 mortality from interrupted healthcare [1.7 million more people], infectious diseases deaths from interrupted services [millions of people with Tuberculosis, Malaria, and HIV], school closures for children [affecting children’s future earning potential and lifespan], interrupted vaccination campaigns for millions of children, and intimate partner violence for millions of women. In high-income countries adverse effects also occur from delayed and interrupted healthcare, unemployment, loneliness, deteriorating mental health, increased opioid crisis deaths, and more.
Third, a formal cost-benefit analysis of different responses to the pandemic was not done by government or public health experts. Initially, I simply assumed that lockdowns to suppress the pandemic were the best approach. But policy decisions on public health should require a cost-benefit analysis. Since lockdowns are a public health intervention, aiming to improve the population wellbeing, we must consider both benefits of lockdowns, and costs of lockdowns on the population wellbeing. Once I became more informed, I realized that lockdowns cause far more harm than they prevent.
This one comes by way of Maajid Nawaz: The Chinese Communist Party’s Global Lockdown Fraud. It is pretty long, but meticulously documented. I can’t say I’ve taken the time to really dig through every detail, but all the same, this is chilling.
In the 20th century, the term totalitarian was born to describe certain regimes that used modern technology to control every aspect of citizens’ lives, binding them to the state by breaking all pre-existing social bonds. One such regime was the Soviet Union, and there is a growing expert consensus that China today is likewise totalitarian. Totalitarian regimes utilize any and all means in the pathological monopolization of power. Though they deliver an exceptionally low quality of life to their citizens, totalitarian states are advanced political organisms, punching above their weight in geopolitics with their unparalleled ability to keep secrets and execute complex operations — the archetypal example being the clandestine rearmament of Germany in the 1930s. In the wilds of geopolitics, the lion underestimates the snake at its own peril, and with lockdowns, the CCP appears to have delivered the world a hefty dose of snake oil.
Both intelligence agencies and scientists may be forgiven for overlooking the CCP’s lockdown fraud. The scientific concepts involved are complex enough to elude defense officials, while the geopolitical implications of China’s turn toward totalitarianism are certainly convoluted enough to have deceived scientists.
Throughout 2020, lockdown measures have been quite popular, but that popularity is deceptive. For the general public, the idea that anyone might accept some outside incentive to support such devastating policies while knowing them to be ineffective — needlessly bankrupting millions of families and depriving millions of children of education and food — is, quite simply, too dark. Thus, the public supports lockdowns because the alternative — that they might have been implemented without good cause — is a possibility too evil for most to contemplate. But those who know history know that others with superficially excellent credentials have done even worse for even less.
Furthermore, most of the public believes that if there were anything untoward about the science behind lockdowns, intelligence agencies would stop them. For obvious reasons, those who work at intelligence agencies do not have the luxury of such complacency. Given the gravity of the decisions being made, we cannot ignore the possibility that the entire “science” of COVID-19 lockdowns has been a fraud of unprecedented proportion, deliberately promulgated by the Chinese Communist Party and its collaborators to impoverish the nations who implemented it.