Issues & Insights

Fauci’s Failures Are Firing Offenses

Dr. Anthony Fauci. Photo: NIAID, licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/deed.en).

I&I Editorial

Dr. Anthony Fauci has impressive credentials and a lengthy tenure as a top-level government health official dating back to 1984. But his performance during the COVID-19 pandemic has been abysmal, with politicized non-science-based edicts and frequently reversed “medical advice” that have confused and frightened Americans.

Just a week ago, Fauci made what to some was a stunning admission: “We’ve done worse than most any country” in managing the outbreak, he said. We say “stunning” because Fauci, as head of NIH’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, is the official most responsible for the U.S. response.

His 2019 pay of $417,608 makes him the nation’s highest paid federal official. As a scientist, he’s held in very high esteem by many, particularly those on the left, who see his sweeping powers – lockdowns, masking, social distancing – as a nifty means of social control. It’s control of 330 million people via social isolation and nonstop browbeating of those who dare to diverge from the oppressive “new normal” we all now experience on a daily basis.

The big problem has been Fauci’s pronunciamentos are often nonsensical, not supported by science or contradictory. “These are my principles,” Groucho Marx once said. “If you don’t like these, I have others.” That’s Fauci.

Take masking, for instance. The Daily Wire counted five different mask policies by Fauci as of Feb. 11. Oops! Make that six. After calling masking “largely symbolic” last spring and telling Americans “don’t wear masks,” he now suggests we need to “double mask” and that it might last into 2022.

This, despite some doctors and researchers claims that masking doesn’t do much. After reviewing multiple studies, the group Science-Based Medicine concluded that “the benefit (of masking) is likely to be modest. It should not be considered full protection, but just a way to reduce the chance of spread a little bit.”

Others note that masking may even hurt users by raising their carbon dioxide intake. Heck, Fauci himself even downplayed masking’s positive effects.

Then there’s his bizarre recent edict that even those vaccinated shouldn’t be allowed to dine inside a restaurant or go to the movies. Why not? No way to know. We do know that neither movie theaters nor restaurants are “superspreader” sites, or even “spreader” sites, for that matter.

The Centers for Disease Control claims from its own very limited survey that restaurants pose a major threat to spreading the virus. But literally tens of thousands of data points from surveys in New York and Minnesota show minuscule infection rates: Just 1.4% of New York cases resulted from restaurants, while 1.7% in Minnesota did.

By the way, data for retailers, gyms, and “hair & personal care” salons were even lower.

This compares with roughly 74% of cases contracted in the home. Should people stop going there, too?

Same is true of school closures. As one blogger aptly noted, “Fauci’s ‘evolving’ positions’ … went all the way from ‘close schools immediately’ to ‘close the bars, open schools’ to ‘schools can only open if the Biden stimulus bill passes.’ “

In short, another incoherent policy robbing millions of children of a year or more of in-place schooling, largely dictated by leftist teachers unions that have shown how little they care about educating kids.

What about the whole idea of “herd immunity”? When the outbreak began, Fauci suggested that 60% or 70% being vaccinated would be enough to stop COVID-19’s march. Now, he says it’s more like 90%, after admitting to The New York Times and others that he basically lied to manipulate people into doing what he wanted them to do.

It’s like a bizarre game of “Simon Says,” with Dr. Fauci as Simon. But it’s not “science,” the left’s new god, that Fauci’s guided by. No, he uses deceptive propaganda and policy pronouncements on behalf of dubious bureaucratic goals that have little to do with hard science, but a lot to do with politics.

Once the Democrats understood that Fauci was politically malleable, the left media followed suit and adopted him as their new hero. He could do no wrong. He even became a heartthrob of sorts, leading the Washington Post’s Sally Quinn to call him “sexy” and CNN’s Alisyn Camerota to wax ecstatic about his many qualities. And, no joke, Rolling Stone ran a piece titled, “We Read Dr. Anthony Fauci-inspired Erotic Fiction So That You Don’t Have To.”

Turning Fauci into a fetish object whose every utterance is treated as scientific gospel has only served to punish the rest of us with interminable lockdowns, quarantines, preventable suicides, isolation, chronic fear, clinical depression, school-less children, lost businesses and jobs, and absurd social distancing rules based on nothing more than guesses,

We’re now well into a massive vaccination program, thanks to former President Donald Trump’s Operation Warp Speed, announced just 10 months ago. By the end of the year, it produced not one but two and now three vaccines to help us banish COVID-19 and return to normal life. With herd immunity on the horizon, we’re almost there.

That is, unless we continue to follow the wrong turns, reversals, delays and just plain bad science that have resulted from Fauci’s bureaucratic malpractice. With half a million dead from a virus that’s only a little more deadly than a bad flu strain, Fauci’s poor policy prescriptions have come up far short of what one might expect of the nation’s highest-paid federal official.

None of the above includes his other, often forgotten policy failures and missteps during earlier disease outbreaks (including ebola in 2014 and AIDs in the 1980s). It’s time for the president and Congress to ask Fauci to resign after 37 years of less-than-spectacular performance. If not, his failures will become theirs.

— Written by the I&I Editorial Board

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The Issues and Insights Editorial Board has decades of experience in journalism, commentary and public policy.

20 comments

    • Pray tell, tell us your facts, genius. Are you disputing the fact that this gnome has been all over the board on every issue?

  • FAUXci’s credentials are his MD (Medical Degree) and several Honorary Degrees that count for nothing. He wrote an article about AIDES back in the 80’s. Someone in Government liked it and gave him the job he has held for over 30 years.
    He has no degree in Epidemiology…just opinions.

    • As far as I know he has never practiced in a clinic setting either. What is more alarm g is that all states follow CDC and NIH guidelines he has control of. The mask wearing should stop completely. If that worked then why so many Positive. For one thing, the way the tests are done have been very sensitive Cuasimg lots of false positives. This includes those with no symptoms. Recent data indicated the tests were finding maybe remnants or such low count as to be none infectious. That’s why the tests were redone to not be so so sensitive.

      The death rate is not from Covid alone. It includes tested and none tested deaths with multiple underlying conditions. How else did seasonal flu, strokes, heart attacks, and other usual cause of death just disappear or decrease by over 60%?

      Don’t even get me going with how the media has hyped thing into a frenzy. I still have friends so scared they haven’t left the house in a year. I’m 70, retired RN and this all makes me crazy. The politicians should have left this to the entire medical community in the way they have in the past. What agenda does this support and why?

  • The sickness that is Fauci was on display in my cardio’s office yesterday. There, at the sign-in desk, was a small figuring of the sainted one himself, Dr. Fauci. Talk about false idols.

      • Who is paying your troll fees? We know you are a troll, as clear facts as presented in the article, are treated as disappearing ink by you.

      • I am George Kamburoff, a real person and no troll, a 76 year old engineer and Vietnam vet who got PTSD from opposing the war I was in.
        I am sensitive to lies and untruths.

  • When history finally processes this era I hope we can celebrate an Anthony Fauci Day the same as the Brits celebrate Guy Fawkes day. We can dress in mocking costumes and have a party with outlandish masks. Through the masks we can sing:

    Black is white and
    White is black.
    Don’t dare ask me to take it back!

    • So far I see no reality-based objections of Fauci here. They seem to be based on political prejudice. We all have it, but it does not overrule reality in many of us.

  • Fauci first said to not wear masks because we had to save the supply for health care workers.
    Later, we had sufficient supply to give to all.

    • Nope, that’s not it. Fauci specifically said that masks were ineffective at first. If they were lying to prevent people from hoarding masks, that’s not what the CDC should be doing. They should have been honest from the beginning that we should stay at home and not buy up masks so healthcare workers could get them. However, there are many instances where Fauci claimed masks were a placebo, or ineffective, or essentially implied other countries that wore masks were all dumb. Just admit it, Fauci messed up. I don’t agree with a lot of other points in this article, but you’d have to go through a lot of mental gymnastics to claim Fauci didn’t mess up on this topic.

  • The article mis-represents Science Based Medicine. The May-2020 article they link to clearly recommended N95 masks as being useful and recommended wearing cloth masks because they “may be of some benefit” but points out that they were not “total protection”. The latter is not surprising as N95 masks are designed to higher standards and cloth is, well, cloth.

    Of course, the article fails to link to the updates from the SCM since May, 2020 such as the recent one from January where they say “The short answer is – the evidence is very strong that masks are beneficial” and “the evidence is complex enough to feed (unjustified) denial, and warrants periodic review.”

  • Firing isn’t good enough. He needs to have to give back that insane salary, plus interest.

  • Dr. Fauci has been in his current position since 1968, two years after he graduated from medical school.

  • If we could have had the HCQ Dr. Zalenko recommended and Fauci banned, Covid-19 would not have effected the country even so much as a serious flu. Doctor after doctor testified that HCQ worked!! We could have used the drug therapies we knew we had, and about 75% of the people who are dead now would not be.

  • I disagree with the editors’ observation regarding Fauci’s “impressive credentials”. Any practicing MD has better credentials than Anthony Fauci has. Unless the writers are defining credentials as having government ID documents (known among federal employees as ‘creds’) issued by a government bureaucracy for the purpose of identification for admission to federal buildings, then Fauci has none at all .

    He doesn’t practice medicine and couldn’t do so if he tried. He is an incompetent bureaucrat who is unemployable outside the federal bureaucracy, and who wouldn’t even be able to hold a job in a state agency if he had to start from scratch with no political connections.

    This is my opinion, based on my own research on the object of the article.

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