The December 2020 resignation of Dr. Deborah Birx, White House Coronavirus Response Coordinator under Trump, revealed predictable hypocrisy. She was also caught in violation of her stay-at home order, as many government officials across the globe. After nine months of doing unimaginable damage to property and life, she was forced to resign.
Even though Anthony Fauci was the man behind the media, it was Birx that was responsible for the White House’s nationwide lockdowns. These did not control or stop the disease but caused great suffering and are still roiling and destroying the planet. It was important that Birx refused to and could not follow her dictates even though her co-citizens were being detained for similar violations against the “public health .”
In the days before Thanksgiving 2020, she had warned Americans to “assume you’re infected” and to restrict gatherings to “your immediate household.” Then she packed her bags and headed to Fenwick Island in Delaware where she met with four generations for a traditional Thanksgiving dinner, as if she were free to make normal choices and live a normal life while everyone else had to shelter in place.
The Associated Press was first out with the report on Dec. 20, 2020.
“Birx stated in a statement, that she had traveled to Delaware. Interviews were not conducted with her.
“She insisted the purpose of the roughly 50-hour visit was to deal with the winterization of the property before a potential sale — something she says she previously hadn’t had time to do because of her busy schedule.
“‘ I did not travel to Delaware in order to celebrate Thanksgiving,” Birx stated in her statement. She also said that she and her family had shared a meal in Delaware.
“Birx stated that all of her Delaware family members are part of her “immediate household”, even though they do live in different houses. Birx would be included in the Home .”
she initially called Potomac home a “3-generation household” (previously 4 generations).
So it was all just a trick: She was actually staying at home, it’s just she has multiple homes! One would think this is the way power elites do business.
The BBC then quoted her defense, which echo the pain experienced by hundreds of millions:
“My daughter hasn’t left that house in 10 months, my parents have been isolated for 10 months. As they have not had the opportunity to visit their grandchildren, and their sons, I believe that has made them feel very depressed. Over a year has passed since my parents were unable to visit their son. All of these are very hard .”
Indeed. However, she was the major voice for the better part of 2020 for requiring exactly that. She is not wrong to want to be with her family, but it is the reason she has worked so hard to stop others from doing this that is up for debate.
Sin of Omission
The press continued to pile on, and she declared that she was leaving her position and would not be seeking a job at the Biden White House. Trump said that she would be missed. This was Trump’s final discrediting of a man many people in the White House, and around the nation had seen as a fanatic and fake and a person who had influenced the health and liberties of the entire country.
It was the fitting ending to an incredibly difficult career. It would be logical that people might read her book and learn about the true reasons she visited, how it felt to deal with that media storm, her real motivations, her decision to abandon her program, and what it was to realize that her rules were not hers.
One slogs through the entire book to discover this amazing fact: She never mentions it. This incident was completely absent from her book.
Instead at the moment in the narrative at which she would be expected to recount the affair she says almost in passing that “When former vice president Biden was declared the winner of the 2020 election, I’d set a goal for myself–to hand over responsibility for the pandemic response, with all its many elements, in the best possible place.”
At that point the book will skip to the next year. Done. This is like Orwell. The story was covered for many days by the international press, and it became an important moment in her career. It has been erased from her personal history.
It makes no sense for her to not mention it. Reading her book is a very painful experience (all credit to Michael Senger’s review) simply because it seems to be weaving fables on page after page, strewn with bromides, completely lacking in self awareness, punctuated by revealing comments that make the opposite point of what she is seeking. Reading it is truly a surreal experience, astonishing especially because she is able to maintain her delusionary pose for 525 pages.
Chief Lockdown Architect
Recall that it was she who was tasked–by Anthony Fauci–with doing the really crucial thing of talking Donald Trump into green-lighting the lockdowns that began on March 12, 2020, and continued to their final hard-core deployment on March 16. This was the “15 Days to Flatten the Curve” that turned into two years in many parts of the country.
His book admits it was two-level lying from the start.
“We had to make these palatable to the administration by avoiding the obvious appearance of a full Italian lockdown,” she writes. We needed to slow down the spread of the virus, and that meant matching the results from Italy, which was a difficult task. In chess, each move’s success was determined by the previous .”
“At this point, I wasn’t about to use the words lockdown or shutdown. After being there for only one week in March, I would not have said either of these words to the White House task force members. They wouldn’t consider me too alarmist, doom-and gloomy, or too dependent on emotions and facts. Their campaign would have been to put me in jail .
In other words she was ready to become a full-fledged CCP like Italy, but wasn’t comfortable saying that. She knew that the plan was not what she had in mind, and it wasn’t for two weeks. I left out the following: that this was only a beginning .”
” “We convinced Trump to put our two-week shutdown in place, but I had to try to find a way to prolong it,” she admitted.
“Fifteen days to slow the spread was a good start. But I knew that it would take more. I didn’t have the numbers in front of me yet to make the case for extending it longer, but I had two weeks to get them. Getting another shutdown approval for the 15-day period was much more challenging than it was. While I was waiting for backlash, someone from the economic team called me to my principal’s office, or to confront me during a task force meeting. .”
None of these things happened
She was searching for evidence that she didn’t have. Trump was told by her that she had the evidence. Trump was tricked by her to believe that stopping a large population would somehow make the virus, to which all people will be exposed eventually vanish, magically.
The economy crashed both domestically, and internationally, because most countries around the globe followed the US’s lead.
How did she get the idea for lockdowns? According to her report, her most significant experience in infectious diseases came from work she did on AIDS. This was a different virus than the respiratory viruses that all people would get, but would not be fatal for a few. It is a reality that has been known since January. Her experience was more important than science.
“In any health crisis, it is crucial to work at the personal behavior level,” she says with the presumption that avoidance at all costs was the only goal. This meant that HIV/AIDS patients had to be convinced to have their HIV/AIDS tested and seek treatment if they are positive. If they are negative, they could also use other Pre-exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP), or wear condoms.
She immediately jumps to an analogy with COVID. I knew that the government agencies needed to do the exact same thing in order to achieve a similar impact on spreading this new coronavirus. The message to wear masks was the most apparent parallel to the HIV/AIDS case.
Masks=condoms. Remarkable. Her thinking is remarkable. Only behavior matters. Keep your distance. Do not cover your mouth. Don’t gather. Don’t travel. Keep your children at school. All other facilities should be closed. No matter what happens, you must not lose sight of the goal. It doesn’t matter what else. Your immune system should be kept as healthy as possible.
I wish that her thought was more complicated than it actually is, but it’s not. This is the reason for lockdowns. How long did it last? It seems as if it will never end. She does not reveal an exit strategy anywhere in her book. Not even vaccines qualify.
From the beginning she made public her views on epidemiology. On March 16, 2020 at her press conference with Trump, she summarized her position: “We really want people to be separated at this time.” People? Everybody? Everywhere? This outrageous and obviously absurd statement would effectively end all life on Earth was not raised by any reporter.
She was seriously deluded about not only how society works but also infectious diseases. She saw only one thing as important as a measure: she wanted to reduce infections by any means necessary, almost as though she could create a society where airborne pathogens were made illegal.
Here’s an example. It was controversial as to how many people could be allowed in the same space. This included at home, in church, in store, in stadiums, community centers, and in churches. The rules were created by her:
” The real issue with the fifty-versus-10 distinction was for me that it showed that the CDC didn’t believe as strongly that SARS CoV-2 was spreading silently through the air and was not being detected from symptomless people. These numbers mattered. The years have shown that even though there was a lot of viral activity, fifty or more people could gather indoors. It increased exponentially the chance of one among those people being infected. I had settled on ten knowing that even that was too many, but I figured that ten would at least be palatable for most Americans–high enough to allow for most gatherings of immediate family but not enough for large dinner parties and, critically, large weddings, birthday parties, and other mass social events.”
She puts a fine point on it: “if I pushed for zero (which was actually what I wanted and what was required), this would have been interpreted as a ‘lockdown’–the perception we were all working so hard to avoid.”
What does this mean for zero people who want to meet? A suicide cult?
In any event, it was her thinking that led to the prohibition of birthday parties, sports and weddings.
Here is a glimpse into her insane vision. Her ability to achieve such incredible influence is amazing.
Her above reference to her belief that an asymptomatic pandemic was the key to understanding it is a reminder of her earlier mention. She believed that COVID could be fatal, and it had a lengthy latency period. According to her, the normal tradeoff between severity or prevalence was irrelevant.
She was somehow certain that the longest estimates of latency were correct: 14 days. This was the root of her obsession with the “wait two more weeks” rule. This dogma was held by her throughout the movie, as if it were her sole guide.
Later, in her book she says that symptoms are almost meaningless because anyone can carry the virus around their noses without getting sick. This is exactly what PCR testing has shown. She didn’t see it as an error in PCR. Instead, she saw it as confirmation that all carriers are present. Everyone must be secure because we will face a black plague.
Despite her remarkable lack of scientific curiosity in the area and extensive experience, she was able to influence all aspects of the first Trump administration’s response. She was, in short, godlike.
But Trump wasn’t and still isn’t a fool. It is likely that he slept a lot wondering why he approved of the destruction. The virus was long here (probably from October 2019), it presented a specific danger to a narrow cohort, but otherwise behaved like a textbook flu. Maybe, he must have wondered, his initial instincts from January and February 2020 were correct all along.
Still, he very reluctantly approved a 30-day extension of lockdowns, entirely on Birx’s urging and with a few other fools standing around. This was the moment when he finally gave in. Birx reports that by April 1, 2020, Trump had lost confidence in her. It is possible that Trump sensed that something was wrong and intuited this. She stopped talking to him.
It would take him another month to fully reconsider everything he’d approved of her.
It made no difference. It didn’t make any difference. The bulk of her book is brag about how she continued to subvert the White House push to open the economy. Once Trump turned against her, and eventually found other people to provide good advice like the tremendously brave Scott Atlas–five months later he arrived in an attempt to save the country from disaster–Birx turned to rallying around her inner circle (Anthony Fauci, Robert Redfield, Matthew Pottinger, and a few others) plus assembling a realm of protection outside of her that included CNN reporter Sanjay Gupta and, very likely, the virus team at the New York Times(which gives her book a glowing review).
Remember that the White House urged normalcy for the rest of the year while other states kept their doors locked down. This was a confusing situation. It was all over. The impression I got was that there were two distinct regimes: Trump’s and the one he couldn’t control. Trump could say something on the campaign trail, but regulations and panic from his agencies kept him silent.
Birx acknowledges she played a significant role in the cause, due to her clever alternation of weekly reporting to the States.
” After the documents with heavy editing were returned to me I would reinsert their objections and place them in these different places. Also, I reorganized and restructured bullet points to ensure that the most important points–the ones the administration opposed the most–were not at the beginning of bullet points. These strategies were shared with three other members of the data team who also wrote these reports. Our Saturday and Sunday report-writing routine soon became: write, submit, revise, hide, resubmit.
“Fortunately, this strategic sleight-of-hand worked. That they never seemed to catch this subterfuge left me to conclude that, either they read the finished reports too quickly or they neglected to do the word search that would have revealed the language to which they objected. In slipping these changes past the gatekeepers and continuing to inform the governors of the need for the big-three mitigations–masks, sentinel testing, and limits on indoor social gatherings–I felt confident I was giving the states permission to escalate public health mitigation with the fall and winter coming.”
Another example is that Scott Atlas, who came to our rescue in August, brought some sense to this crazy world. He worked together with other people to reduce the CDC’s obsession with constant and universal testing. Atlas understood that the “track, trace and isolate” method was not only a myth but a huge invasion of individual liberties which would have no benefit for public health. His new recommendation was for people who are sick and not able to be tested–just like in everyday life.
After a media frenzy lasting a week, regulations were reversed.
Birx shows that she did it:
“This wasn’t the only bit of subterfuge I had to engage in. After the revised CDC testing guidelines were published in August by Atlas, I contacted Bob Redfield . Bob Redfield and I completed our revision of the guidance in less than one week and posted it secretly. The emphasis was now on testing in order to find areas of silent spread. We knew it was risky, but we were hopeful that everyone at the White House wouldn’t be distracted by campaigning and not realize what Bob had done. We weren’t being transparent with the powers that be in the White House …”
One might wonder how she managed to get away with it. You might wonder how she managed to do this.
“[T]he guidance gambit was only the tip of the iceberg of my transgressions in my effort to subvert Scott Atlas’s dangerous positions. Ever since Vice President Pence told me to do what I needed to do, I’d engaged in very blunt conversations with the governors. Some White House senior advisers wouldn’t admit that I had spoken the truth. Censoring my reports and putting up guidance that negated the known solutions was only going to perpetuate Covid-19’s vicious circle. What I could not get past was the gatekeepers of my reports. I spoke .”
The bulk of the book is her explanation of how she managed a shadow White House that was dedicated to keeping America in lockdown as long as possible. She told the story as the centre of it all, and the only one who was correct in everything. This she did with the help of a few co-conspirators, including the Vice President.
A discussion about the science that was gathering in the space she carefully nurtured is missing. Whereas anyone could have noted the studies pouring out from February onward that threw cold water on her entire paradigm–not to mention 15 years, or make that 50 years, or perhaps 100 years of warnings against such a reaction–from scientists all over the world with vastly more experience and knowledge than she. It was all she cared about, and it is evident that she still doesn’t.
It’s very clear that Birx had almost no contact with any serious scientist who disputed the draconian response, not even John Iaonnidis who explained as early as March 17, 2020, that this approach was madness. She didn’t seem to care. She was certain that she was right or was acting for people or interests who could keep her from being prosecuted or persecuted.
For those interested, Chapter 8 provides a weird look into her first real scientific challenge: the seroprevalence study by Jayanta Bhattacharya published April 22, 2020. The study showed that infection mortality rates were higher than expected, owing to infections and recovery being far more common than Birx or Fauci claimed. Bhattacharya’s paper showed that the pathogen had evaded all control and was likely to become as widespread as any respiratory virus. After examining the paper, she concluded that there were unnamed fundamental flaws in methodology and logic which had “damaged public health in this critical moment of the pandemic .”
And that’s all: Birx is attempting to make sense of science. Meanwhile, the article was published in the International Journal of Epidemiology and has over 700 citations. To further her commitment to the lockdown paradigm, she saw every disagreement as an opportunity for attack.
Even now with scientists all over the globe outraged, citizens angry at their governments and regimes falling and their anger reaching fever pitch, and while studies continue to pour in showing that locked down societies made little difference, and that they at most protected the education systems and economies of their members, she remains unmoved. She is not aware of this.
Birx rejects any contrary cases like Sweden. Americans cannot take this route due to their health problems. South Dakota is rural and backwater. (Birx still finds it mad that Governor KristiNoem declined to meet with her. Florida: She dismisses this case, despite the fact that the results are better than California and the new record population inflow to Florida.
She isn’t shaken by the fact that not one country, territory or region on earth has benefited from her approach. Not even China, which continues to pursue a zero COVID policy. She doesn’t even mention Australia and New Zealand, despite them following the Birx method exactly.
The story of lockdowns has Biblical proportions. It is an account of scientific failure, power, intellectual insularity, insanity, outlandish arrogance and feudalistic impulses as well as political treachery, conspiracy, and political treachery. This is a true horror story for all ages. It tells the tale of how quickly the country of the free turned into a despotic hellscape. Birx was there at the heart of all this, and you can find every fear in this book that anyone can read. Birx is proud of her part in the book, and she takes all credit. She believes that Trump hate media will protect and love her sins from condemnation and exposure.
We cannot ignore Trump’s inexcusable behavior. Trump should not have allowed her to have her way. Never. He was not only a victim of ego-driven fallibility, but he also committed a great deal of betrayal. Trump’s character flaws (like most people in his income bracket, he had been a germaphobe since childhood) led to the destruction of hope and prosperity for millions of people over many years.
I’ve been trying for the past two years to be in that White House scene that day. The atmosphere is hot and there are only a few trusted people in the small rooms. It feels like the whole world is under their control. Trump may have drawn from his Atlantic City casino experience. He must shut down the casino because it is forecasted to be a hurricane. Although he doesn’t wish to, he agrees to do what is right.
Was this his thought? Perhaps. Perhaps too someone told him that China’s President Xi Jinping managed to crush the virus with lockdowns so he can too, just as the WHO said in its Feb. 26 report. In such an environment, it’s difficult to resist the urge to omnipotence and temporarily forget the fact that your decisions could have a profound impact on the lives of everyone from Maine to Florida. This was an illegitimate and dangerous decision, based only on pretension and folly.
What followed seemed inevitable, in retrospect. Inflation, economic collapse, broken lives, desperation and loss of rights, as well as the growing hunger, demoralization, educational losses, cultural destruction all occurred in the aftermath of these tragic days. Even two-and-a-half years after the disaster, judges in this country are still struggling to control their courts and revive the Constitution.
The plotters often admit to it at the end and take credit like criminals who can’t resist going back to the crime scene. In her book, Dr. Birx does exactly this. Her transparency has its limits. She doesn’t explain the true reason behind her resignation, even though this is well-known to the public. Instead she pretends that the whole Thanksgiving mess never occurred and attempts to erase it from the history books.
There is so much to write and this review is just one of many. The book is filled with incredible passages. And yet her 525-page book, now selling at a 50 percent discount, does not contain a single citation to a single scientific study, paper, monograph, article, or book. It has zero footnotes. There are no references to authoritative sources and it lacks the humility expected of a scientific account.
And it doesn’t give an accurate account of her power over the White House, the US and other countries that have imposed their will on this nation and the rest. While the nation is preparing for yet another outbreak of disease, it’s possible for her to collect any royalties from her book sales while she works as a consultant for ActivePure, an air purifier company. She makes more contribution to the public’s health in this role than she ever did when she was president.
From the Brownstone Institute
Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.
Jeffrey Tucker is founder and president of the Brownstone Institute. Five books have been written by him, including “Right-Wing Collectivism : The Other Threat To Liberty.” “