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GBD Suppression & Mischaracterization

Message Dom Filanowski

[This is a supplementary article. For a greater understanding of context, please read "The Unjust Condemnation of the Great Barrington Declaration." click here]

The mischaracterization of Dr Bhattacharya:

Before his involvement with the Great Barrington Declaration, Dr Jay Bhattacharya became a household name when he co-authored an opinion piece about Covid-19 in the Wall Street Journal [click here]. The article was widely vilified by members of the press who misrepresented its intent. Dr Bhattacharya outlined several possible outcomes of the pandemic, illustrating how little was known about the novel coronavirus at the time.

Some of these projections did underestimate the severity of the pandemic, but they were presented as possible alternatives to a projection being touted by the media at the time, a possible 2-to-4-million US deaths attributed to the virus itself, based on the case fatality rate and the possibility that 100 million Americans would be infected throughout the course of the pandemic. This projection was based on the assumption that the case fatality rate would not go down as more data was gathered. A projection is a possible outcome, not a prediction. This is something the media could have emphasized instead of intentionally misrepresenting the views being expressed by Dr Bhattacharya.

In addition to the other projections, the article said, "Population samples from China, Italy, Iceland and the US provide relevant evidence...The FATALITY RATE, then, would be at least 10-FOLD LOWER THAN ESTIMATES based on REPORTED CASES...This does not make Covid-19 a nonissue. The daily reports from Italy and across the US show real struggles and overwhelmed health systems."

A CDC guidance that was released in May of 2020 disclosed its "best estimate" for the fatality rate of people who become infected with Covid-19 and display symptoms, 0.4% [click here]. At the time, the global case fatality rate was over 5.8% [see graph click here], which supports what Dr Bhattacharya was referring to when he said the fatality rate could be "at least 10-fold lower," (see the arithmetic below). Plus, the CDC figure specifically excluded asymptomatic infections. Since a significant portion of COVID infections are asymptomatic (not simply pre-symptomatic), the 0.4% figure released by the CDC would be higher than the fatality rate of all COVID infections (symptomatic and asymptomatic combined).

Arithmetic:

"10-fold lower than estimates based on reported cases," CDC "best estimate" 0.4%

(4.0% Ã 10 = 0.4%) &

"at least 10-fold lower," global case fatality rate was over 5.8% at the time

(4.0% is less than 5.8%)

Alternatively,

(5.80% Ã 10 = 0.58%) & (0.40% is less than 0.58%)

Dr Bhattacharya's implications were not reckless. He mentioned the "overwhelmed health systems," and he specifically said, "This does not make Covid-19 a nonissue." Why, then, did the media misconstrue his suggestions? Some of Dr Bhattacharya's projections were low, but he was spot-on with the one mentioned above. On the other side of the spectrum, some experts were projecting between 2 and 4 million American deaths. Dr Bhattacharya was simply demonstrating that the case fatality rate was probably much higher than the actual fatality rate, which it was, according to the CDC's "best guess."

Two distinct ad hominem attacks were applied to the criticism of Dr Bhattacharya's doctorate in economics. The first assault was to deny his credibility as a relevant expert, ignoring the fact that Dr Bhattacharya is also an epidemiologist. He was being portrayed as an economic expert as opposed to a health expert. Dr Bhattacharya was even criticized for the media outlet that published the opinion piece he co-authored (the Wall Street Journal) because of the journal's self-proclaimed "lens of business, finance, economics and money." This may be the publication's lens, but the same is not necessarily true for all of its contributors. Additionally, the concept of economics is not always what comes to mind (e.g., Wall Street speculation; oligopoly; plutocracy), which is illustrated by Dr Bhattacharya's bio, below.

The second ad hominem attack was to imply that Dr Bhattacharya's specialization in health economics created a conflict of interest. According to the disinformation being spread at the time, he was weighing a loss of human life against financial losses [in making his health assessments]. This is completely false as he has explained several times. Instead, Dr Bhattacharya's assessments are based on comparing the potential lives lost from one scenario to the potential lives lost from another. To fully appreciate the nature of his expertise and its application, explore the doctor's work prior to the pandemic. Dr Bhattacharya's University of Southern California bio states the following [click here]:

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Dominic M Filanowski, II is a self-described writer-artist-activist and a cultivator of thought. He's a Philly-boy that truly knows the meaning of brotherly love. Educated in the field of graphic design, Dominic has a working knowledge of (more...)
 

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