NPR: national propaganda readers

assessing federal claims about an "unvaccinated pandemic" and just who is spreading disinformation

the soviet union called. they want their national media policy back.

psyop 101: if you’re going to tell the big lie, the best one is to accuse your detractors of whatever it is that you yourself are doing.

this makes your opponents look like they are just being petty and responding to you with “i know you are but what am i?” then you censor and silence them and use repetition in the place of reason and make up facts free from contradiction.

in an age when the white house has taken to hectoring and threatening media and social media platforms alike into acquiescence with “the approved narrative” to the exclusion of all others, calling for universal social media blacklists for people excluded from one outlet, and endlessly using federal grant money to tailor “the science” to “the politics” it is perhaps instructive to examine just how things are going in the actual US public media such as NPR whose lofty tagline of “hear every voice” would seem to imply an open and honest debate.

it is not. their aspirational tagline appears to be a classic example of inversion and obfuscation. NPR has sunk to 1960’s pravda levels of misinformation and the amplification of propaganda. they are making up facts, misreporting half-truths in extremely misleading ways, and carry only one voice and only one narrative. this recent piece provides an excellent example:

bereft of context, laden with flat out falsehoods, and amplifying in the most slanted of fashions a number of “facts” that bear absolutely zero relationship to what is actually happening, this article is not “reporting” it’s hallucinatory story telling. the claims it makes are so wrong, so bad, and so divorced from the underlying data and science that it is small wonder that we see a leadership desirous of silencing other views.

this is trivial to pick apart and leave in tatters.

if you’re going to tell a lie like this, you need to be the only one speaking.

this lie starts in the denial of seasonality which has been a key driver of covid and of differing regional effects since day one. the northeast gets its surge in winter. the southern states get a summer surge. this is natural hope simpson seasonality, a well documented pattern known for 100 years. a look at last year is instructive.

this is a chart from last year .

as is readily visible, we saw deaths rise at exactly this time in 2020.

that rise was strongly regional in character. it was not a surge in the US, it was a surge ending in the northeast and one starting in the south. it’s seasonality and it’s localized. to make this obvious, i broke it down by climate region:

it becomes patently obvious that geography is a powerful predictor of covid outcomes and timing. this has been known for a year, yet again, NPR would have us forget. when cases rise in lockdown states, it’s “seasonality” when seasonality hits in non-lockdown states, it’s “irresponsibility.” it’s evergreen partisan point scoring.

“The upward trend in national statistics is being driven almost entirely by outbreaks in places with low vaccination rates, such as the Ozarks, Florida and parts of the Mountain West. Some counties, especially in Missouri and Arkansas, are recording more cases now than they did during the winter.” -NPR

of course it is. this is seasonal. it’s sort of dazzling the way they fail to ascribe southern outperformance over the winter (or even mention it) to behavior, yet suddenly do so come summer. this is dishonest attribution. it’s literally the same shabby trick they used last year to attack florida and texas (yet oddly not california). it’s also a severe misstatement of the overall situation.

“The seven-day average of new cases has increased by nearly 70% to almost 30,000 per day; hospitalizations are up 36%. And deaths from the virus have risen steadily in recent days, reversing a months-long downward trend that began in mid-January.” -NPR

deaths are rising so infinitesimally at this point as to not even warrant comment and are 53% lower than the same day last year. and this figure is still VASTLY overcounted because of the “deaths with detectable trace virus” methodology instead of deaths with covid as cause and how profitable is is to find such deaths and cases.

this is the “hospitalization surge” about which they are so concerned. again, it’s 55% below a year ago and remains at the lowest level since this all started being tracked apart from the predicted late spring low. it’s 89% below the january peak.

the delta variant going around is barely a sniffle and the risk reward for using an experimental vaccine on the young, the major target of the current vax push, is terrible.

per the CDC’s own data, it’s on the order of 30-300X as dangerous for an under 25 to get vaxxed than to get delta variant covid. (analysis HERE)

yet we hear this from the head of CDC:

"There is a clear message that is coming through: This is becoming a pandemic of the unvaccinated," Dr. Rochelle Walensky, the CDC's director, said at a Friday briefing of the White House COVID-19 Response Team. "Our biggest concern is we are going to continue to see preventable cases, hospitalizations and sadly deaths among the unvaccinated."

and this from fauci:

“More than 99% of recent deaths were among the unvaccinated, infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci said earlier this month on NBC's Meet the Press, while Walensky noted on Friday that unvaccinated people accounted for over 97% of hospitalizations.”

and yet i have torn the internet apart looking for data to support this and cannot find it. it’s all news stories citing news stories. there is never a link to data. facui speaks, walensky speaks, but there is never a source or a cite.

the CDC does not have it.

as far as i can tell, this data is made up.

(though if someone knows where it’s coming from, please let me know.)

it also flies wildly in the face of all expectation, global data, and basic epidemiology.

  • the vaccines would need to be near perfect for this to be true, and they are not.

  • the vaccinated cohorts are older, sicker, and more immunocompromised. vaccines only work if your immune system does. no way they are only 1% of deaths and 3% of hospitalizations. that’s all but mathematically impossible given the risk stratification.

    • this is either another of fauci’s total whoppers (seems likely)

    • or there is something deeply dishonest going on in the counting

    • the LA figures that go back to december include peak seasonality from a time of near zero vaccination. this is like claiming that “98% of all human deaths occurred in people without internet access” as “proof” that “internet saves lives.” not terribly relevant to people dying in the year 1300, is it?

we can check this set of claims against some other datasets to assess its plausibility. this is certainly not what is happening in the UK. most deaths there are among the vaccinated.

the guardian has quite a good take here:

“It could sound worrying that the majority of people dying in England with the now-dominant Delta (B.1.617.2) variant have been vaccinated. Does this mean the vaccines are ineffective? Far from it, it’s what we would expect from an effective but imperfect vaccine, a risk profile that varies hugely by age and the way the vaccines have been rolled out.”

this is exactly right. the key salients are that those vaccinated are older and have more risk factors than those who are not. they had first access and self select for vaccine based on risk reward. this combines with the fact that a vaccine is only as good as the recipient’s immune system.

“But the risk of dying from Covid-19 is extraordinarily dependent on age: it halves for each six to seven year age gap. This means that someone aged 80 who is fully vaccinated essentially takes on the risk of an unvaccinated person of around 50 – much lower, but still not nothing, and so we can expect some deaths.”

this issue is going to pervade the US data as well. i can see no reason why it would diverge.

this gets FAR more worrying when one starts to look at the israeli data which is among the best around at this point and comes from a society with a 66% vaccination rate. their data is showing what looks to be near zero vaccine efficacy in suppressing cases.

the % of cases is tracking quite tightly to the % vaccinated even when stratified by age cohort. this is a worrying sign about vaccine efficacy.

it could be argued that the point is not to prevent detectable trace virus, but rather, hospitalization and death, and this is not an unreasonable stance to take. unfortunately, the data fails to support this claim as well.

This is the number of admission and severe case of the this month.

Upper graph represents admissions Lower graph represent severe patients

Green is fully vaccinated Orange is one shot of Pfizer. Red is unvaccinated”

this makes the facui/walensky claims look impossible. the US is not going to diverge from others this significantly.

  • there is also a nasty sleight of hand here. studies show an increased incidence of covid in the 2 weeks post first dose of mRNA vaccine. this is why the US only starts counting “vaxxed case/death/hosp” at 1-2 weeks post 2nd dose.

    • the vaccines themselves may be driving many of these surges

    • to assess that, we’d need data on deaths/cases/hospitalization post dose 1 and to split that out as a separate cohort from “unvaccinated”

    • adding this cohort to the “unvaccinated” group when it is quite literally the fact that they began the vaccination process that enhanced their risk seems careless at best and deliberately shifting risk at worst.

this whole thread is worth reading. (study HERE) one dose basically doubled covid risk in healthcare workers over the next 2 weeks. this needs to be added to vaccination risks, not excluded from them and lumped in with “unvaccinated” as is done in the US. it’s a massive inherent slanting of the data.

one can easily see why the “vaccinate everyone” gang wants to keep this info from propagating. “you’ll be at twice the risk of covid for your 2 weeks between doses” is not what marketing dreams are made of.

but science is about facts and healthcare choices should be about real risk and real reward.

“lie ‘till you comply” is not the mantra of good people or good government.

all in all, this leaves the NPR tale in tatters. there is no sourcing for their claims and they fly in the face of all other data. it’s not plausible and likely not even possible that fauci is telling the truth.

yet those quoted therein and supported slavishly thereby are the people who would erect a truth ministry to determine what can be spoken about vaccines online. they would turn all the internet into a megaphone for their “expert” voices alone.

this is not even a pot calling a kettle black.

this is a fox accusing the chickens of raiding the den.

demand better. this has become obscene.