The following is an opinion and analysis by John Tierney
At the end of a recent 800-meter race in Oregon, a high-school runner named Maggie Williams got dizzy, passed out and landed face-first just beyond the finish line. She and her coach blamed her collapse on a deficit of oxygen due to the mask she’d been forced to wear, and state officials responded to the public outcry by easing their requirements for masks during athletic events.
But long before the pandemic began, scientists had repeatedly found that wearing a mask could lead to oxygen deprivation. Why had this risk been ignored?
One reason is that a new breed of censors has been stifling scientific debate about masks on social-media platforms. When Scott Atlas, a member of the Trump White House’s coronavirus task force, questioned the efficacy of masks last year, Twitter removed his tweet. When eminent scientists from Stanford and Harvard recently told Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis that children should not be forced to wear masks, YouTube removed their video discussion from its platform. These acts of censorship were widely denounced, but the social-media science police remain undeterred, as I discovered when I recently wrote about the harms to children from wearing masks.
Facebook promptly slapped a label on the article: “Partly False Information. Checked by independent fact-checkers.” City Journal appealed the ruling, a process that turned out to be both futile and revealing. Facebook refused to remove the label, which still appears whenever the article is shared, but at least we got an inside look at the tactics that social-media companies and progressive groups use to distort science and public policy.
The “independent fact-checkers” of my article are affiliated with a nonprofit group called Science Feedback, which has partnered with Facebook in what it calls a “fight against misinformation.” The group describes itself as “nonpartisan,” a claim that I would label “Mostly False” after studying dozens of its fact-checks enforcing progressive orthodoxy on climate change and public health. I didn’t see anything that would have displeased the journalists and officials promoting lockdowns and mask mandates. Nor did I see anything that would have displeased a Democrat, particularly during the last presidential campaign. In October, when former President Donald Trump was predicting that a vaccine was imminent, the group labeled that prediction “Inaccurate” and proclaimed that “widespread Covid-19 vaccination is not expected before mid-2021.” (Fact check: The vaccine rollout began in December.)
My article was flagged because it cited a study by a team of researchers in Germany who established an online registry for thousands of parents to report on the impact of masks on their children. More than half of those who responded said that masks were giving their children headaches and making it difficult for them to concentrate. More than a third cited other problems, including malaise, impaired learning, drowsiness and fatigue. (Continued...)
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It’s pure child abuse! If anyone did this before the Rona in their home, they would have had their children taken away by DFS. It’s all about dehumanizing control. It’s disgusting.!
I read a couple of fact checks on contrarian scientific article. The fact checkers discussed the author's credentials in great detail before opining that he was not qualified in the field. They did not however address the facts cited in the article.. As a consequence I pretty much 8gnore ggs act checkers opinions.
Lee. C.. Parker says
Face mask ...true..but in cold weather...a mask will use body temp to warm the air going into your lungs...thus keeping the lungs from getting seared by frigid temps...of course...hot air temps will make it difficult to deliver O2 to the lungs/body...Duh!...common sense ...Solution... educate yourself...find people who know what they're doing! Hello!
vi Monty says
yeah FB is getting too big for its britches. I am divorcing it as soon as I can figure out how the he!! to escape. I posted something that ole' Hitler wrote about lies because of the lies that are going around today from some people. they accused me of causing danger. what??? it was a famous quote!! I have had enough.
Escape? Simple. Just stop using it.
laura baker says
The online facebook trolls are ridiculously liberal. They try to virtue-shame posters who post something conservative and especially pro-Trump or anti-mask/anti-vaxx. This has happened to me several times. They must be very young, because they never have a real POINT to debate; they just denegrate, insult and call nasty names such as "racist, ignorant" et c. I tried to engage with some of them, before I realized that they are HIRED to do this!!! This is a major reason that so many conservatives have left fb . . . and I guess, that's what fb prefers! . . .https://worldofbuzz.com/can-actually-paid-troll-social-media-pays-rm8500-month/
Jon Brown says
Can Fact-Checking Companies be sued? I heard that 2 European epidemiologists were going after a Facebook "fact checking" company?
Many people simply do not understand how scientists think, speak, or conduct research. Most of all, most do not understand what it takes to become a scientist nor the incredible pressures under which they work.
First of all to be an expert one must first earn a Ph.D. in the field. (Physicians and engineers typically claim to be sceintific experts, but, while engineers are fantastic at engineering and physicians are great at being doctors, they both often make poor researchers for they are trained with a completely different mind set and way of thinking. Likewise, scientists typically make horrible doctors and engineers.) The American Ph.D. is likely the most difficult degree one can earn. Years ago when I compared notes on earning a Ph.D. with colleagues from England, Scotland, Czechoslovakia, Australia, and elsewhere, they often claim that the demands for earning an American Ph.D. was beyond what any normal human could ever accomplish. As a result of its difficulty, those earning a Ph.D. in the hard sciences are very much above average intelligence, self starters, Type A personalities, and problem solvers. Without these traits, one simply will have almost no chance of surviving the program.
Also what many people do not understand is the importance of being funded to perform one's research. In many research jobs, especially those in academia, failure to obtain funding means the loss of the job. It's just that simple. Worse still is that typically one in six or fewer grant applications that are deemed "meritable" are ever funded. Imagine the environment where there is a population of highly intelligent, Type A personality, self starting, problem solvers who are all competing for a very limited pool of money and their careers completely depend upon getting that money. This makes for a level of competition that is unlike anything found anywhere else excepts perhaps for professional sports. While a great many scientists are ethical, some are not and will do what is needed to get an edge to secure funding for their research.
Now consider the less than honest politician. If they have a program or issue involving science they want to implement for whatever reason, then they go in search of a person who has the right initials behind their name who is willing to support the program. This scientist they find may be great or incompetent. It really does not matter. Once chosen, the politician begins hawking the scientist as though they were the only and most brilliant expert on the subject. If the effort is being pushed by a Democrat, then often times the Left owned media will jump on board further building the reputation of the scientist as humanity's only hope. The scientist, in hope of payback with funding and such, then hawks the program the politician demands. Should any other scientist with a differing opinion dare to speak out, they will be doxxed and destroyed as only the media can do. (A version of this process happened in Russia many decades ago under Lysenko with horrific results.) Soon the public, following orders to trust the "science", jumps on board and all the useful idiots start to prowl social media ready to attack anyone who might dare to have an opinion differing from the anointed "expert". And, of course, the "expert's" opinion becomes fact for the fact checkers.
Eventually the "expert" is found to be wrong and the program fails because it was based on bad science. The politician pleads innocence while throwing the expert under the bus for being wrong and the public loses faith in science. In reality, the problem was not that experts are wrong, rather it is how those politicians who choose what expert we must listen to are wrong.
Lather, rinse, repeat. This has happened so often that I am surprised I need to describe the process.
It's time to hold the Fact Checkers accountable able with their lives..See how many LIE then.
Jim Jarvo says
These "fact-checker" sites are anything but independant or non-biased. They should be called fact suppression because that is mainly what they are doing. You can sign up and pay fees to become a certified fact checker with supposed credentials that make you look serious but you have to submit work which shows that you are pushing their agenda otherwise you are out. Ministry of propaganda, should be stamped out and brought to light.
Donna Propper says
I consider myself a 'digital warrior', a truth seeker/sharer. Facebook continually censors truth; truth needed in todays culture. Have been in Facebook jail many times because they deemed my posts to be 'lies or offensive'. This time they put me in jail for 5 weeks. Yes; Facebook and much of Social Media is a hater of truth. I will continue in the battle.