, 03.04.2021 05:47 AM

My latest: trust the experts, trust science

When you suspect you are being conned, and you’re not an expert, what do you do?

You go find an expert who tells the truth, that’s what.

Dr. Anthony Fauci is ours.

In my family, Dr. Fauci is regarded as a saint who hasn’t been beatified yet. He’s Catholic, like us, and was taught by Jesuits, like me. He was born to a family of modest means in Brooklyn, and went on to serve every U.S. president since Ronald Reagan. He’s now the chief medical advisor to President Joe Biden.

During the dark, grim early days of the pandemic, Fauci was the only one who seemed to be telling us the truth. Remember? Back then, Canada’s Minister of Health was demanding that Canadians stop wearing masks. Patty Hajdu was calling the virus “low risk” and dismissing any criticisms of China’s approach as “conspiracy theories.”

Back then, too, Donald Trump was declaring that the coronavirus “a hoax,” and – when it became apparent to all that it wasn’t – he suggested we should inject ourselves with bleach to kill the virus.

Trump, and his minions, despised Fauci. But Fauci told, and tells, the truth. He’s “America’s doctor,” as The New Yorker call him. But what he has to say is important for Canada, too. Especially this week.

This week, Canadian politicians and health officials started executing a slow-motion volte face – a flip-flop. This week – after telling us over and over, for months, that we need to meticulously follow the instructions of the vaccine manufacturers – those politicians and officials abruptly changed course.

After insisting that we all must get the second dose of the vaccine, and that we shouldn’t delay doing so, some politicians and health officials started to rewrite the truth. My Sun colleague Brian Lilley broke the news: “a number of provinces [are] looking to vaccinate more of their population by extending the time between first and second doses for those getting the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines.”

Wrote Lilley: “If the [federal] recommendation gives the blessing to all provinces to delay second doses, that could mean most of us vaccinated with at least one dose by Canada Day.”

For a nation languishing at around 60th spot globally for vaccinations (as we are, says Our World In Data), and for a nation with more than 70 per cent of us “angry” at the federal government (as we are, says the pollster Ipsos), all of this sure is convenient, isn’t it? For a Liberal Party eyeballing a June vote, getting everyone a potentially life-saving single jab sure would be politically-helpful, wouldn’t it?

Not so fast, says the truth-teller, Dr. Anthony Fauci.

Britain is now doing what Canada wants to do – delay the second dose. Quebec, meanwhile, isn’t even providing a second shot, Lilley reported.

Asked about messing with vaccinations, Fauci didn’t mince words.

“We’re telling people [two shots] is what you should do, and then we say, ‘Ooops, we changed our mind’?” Fauci told the Washington Post. “I think that would be a messaging challenge, to say the least.”

Delaying a second dose, as Justin Trudeau’s government clearly plans to do, has “risks,” Fauci says. In Forbes, Fauci said that approach wouldn’t work for America.

So why should it work for Canada? Why should we take what Dr. Fauci calls “a risk”?

Is it because what was once true is no longer true? Or is it because it will assist the Trudeau government in its re-election?

When in doubt, seek out a real expert. When uncertain, find a truth-teller.

Anthony Fauci is an expert truth-teller. Asked about delaying, or even denying, a second dose?

He says don’t do it.

[Kinsella is a former Chief of Staff to a federal Liberal Minister of Health.]

23 Comments

  1. Yes delaying the second dose has risks, but delaying the first dose has significant consequences both known and unknown.

  2. dour, sullen, and unsmiling political hack says:

    Dr. Fauci is a doctor. Period. End of story. There are way too many non-doctors making calls on this stuff. I’m from Ontario and we have been getting ridiculous mixed messages over the past few weeks in radio / TV ads. The advertising is meant to scare the hell out of you and make you stay home. At the same time they are re-opening gyms, stores restaurants etc.. What the hell is the call here? The answer is the government has no idea. Too much government bureaucracy is being clouded with the advice of consultants, MBA people and so called “emergency managers” with extremely dubious credentials / professional knowledge base. Let the doctors do their work FFS and get the hell out the way.

  3. Mark says:

    Well, here in BC, I consider Dr. Bonnie Henry to be an expert. Dr Bonnie, as she is affectionately referred to, disagrees with your assessment about the timing of second doses. While not Catholic myself, I consider her to be a saint as well. Thousands of British Columbians would agree.

    • Warren says:

      Go tell Dr. Fauci.

      • Warren,

        I find myself being in the curious position of neither being a Yes nor a No on the first vaccine shot. My mind hasn’t even gone there as regards a second shot, which apparently I would have to get outside Quebec.

        It’s quite the balancing act thinking of the general welfare by getting at least the first shot but then worrying about possible side-effects or reactions that I may not necessarily enjoy, or which might possibly impact my health due to the accelerated vaccine development and subsequent approval process. That has me wondering.

        And the other thing is: what if people end up with two doses and the vaccine meets a particularly deadly strain? Will that require an emergency rethink and reformulation to save lives of those unfortunate people who might catch this as yet theoretical strain? Granted this last point is more of an intellectual exercise than anything else but it’s worth pondering.

      • David Bronaugh says:

        Bonnie Henry actually addressed Dr Fauci in her recent talk: https://youtu.be/D-IE-6APSDw?t=1778

        Fauci did not recommend extension of dosing interval in the USA because they do not have supply problems. I quote: “Very quickly the gap between supply and demand is going to be diminished and then overcome in this country,” he said. “The rationale for a single dose — and use all your doses for the single dose — is when you have a very severe gap between supply and demand.”

        We have that problem. Ergo, Fauci approves of our approach.

  4. Jim Murray says:

    I agree with Mark and I’m in BC too. Dr Bonnie is my saint. I’ll go with her.

  5. Yet Another Calgarian says:

    Canadians should be calling for a full, non-partisan public hearing on the government’s handling of this.

    Even beyond Trudeau’s massive and blatant incompetence things like the mismanagement of the emergency stockpile by what should have been full time, professional bureaucrats reeks of institutional failure as well.

    We are *owed* an explanation.

    • YAC,

      This government doesn’t give a damn what Canadians think, much less what they demand: their manta is to always shutdown any legitimate avenues of inquiry, period. How many Commons committees have they bottled up and prevented from getting at their so-called record? I’ve lost count.

      • Yet Another Calgarian says:

        I am in 100% agreement with you unfortunately.

        Sadly a lot of Canadians dont seem to give much of a damn either which really bothers me moee than an incompetent politician.

        We may as well be living in Brazil.

  6. Doug says:

    The “trust the experts” narrative has two flaws:

    1) It lacks accountability. A politician can point out that they are following expert advice and if the the expected outcome does not materialize, neither the politician or expert falls on their sword. Ultimately, politicians are accountable for all of their decisions. They can choose how much weight to place on expert advice, but they must always be the ultimate decision maker

    2) Issues don’t exist in a vacuum. Following expert advice on one issue usually means not following advice on other issues. A true leader (remember those) finds the good enough compromise

    Bringing expertise to the forefront of politics is as worrisome a trend as the increasing influence of social media. Politicians seem to be able to pass issues on to experts and focus on social media popularity, instead of facing the consequences of making difficult decisions on their own. I miss the conviction politics of the 80’s. Like her or not, Thatcher took on challenging issues, sometimes listened to experts, but always accepted the accountability

  7. Douglas W says:

    Virus, in a couple of years, will shrug at a first dose or a second dose.

  8. Carlos says:

    Experts such as Dr Fauci and Dr Henry can both be right. And the BC CDC is putting out that info with regards to why they are delaying the second shot. If the primary objective is to prevent folks from being in the hospitals, and preventing COVID deaths, then getting everyone a first shot will help those objectives. http://www.bccdc.ca/Health-Info-Site/Documents/COVID-19_vaccine/Public_health_statement_deferred_second_dose.pdf

    Again its a fluid situation right, but blindly adhering to Dr Fauci’s advice may not help our own situation.

  9. Phil Brunet says:

    Puh-leeze. The attention whore that is Fauci has flip-flopped with the best of them.

    When Trump stopped travel from China (before Biden had ever said anything on the subject BTW), Fauci said it wasn’t necessary. Last February Fauci said masks were not needed; now it’s wear two, or even three. Never mind that with two masks it’s almost impossible to breathe. Last March Dr. Doom, mimicking ice cream Nancy Pelosi, said it was OK for restaurants to stay open. Before long Fauci did a two-step shuffle on that as well.

    No wonder this guy is the highest paid employee of the US Government. Fits perfectly.

    He also did a 180 on social distancing. Easy, just blame Trump. Genius Fauci said we would not have a vaccine within a year. Enter Trump. But now weasel Fauci is taking credit for everything.

    The latest from Fauci is he doesn’t think things will be back to normal in a year, and the lockdowns will have to continue. Say what? Fat chance everybody goes along with that.

    A day without Florida orange juice is a day without sunshine. And a day without Doktor Fauci clogging up the news cycle is a day without self-serving bullshit.

  10. Peter says:

    As we don’t yet have the evidentiary verdict on the efficacy of any vaccine, it’s too early for any layperson to choose sides in this highly technical debate among doctors, scientists and epidemiologists, or to accord any of them total trust. The choice seems to be between offering immunity to fewer people and offering protection against serious illness and death for more people. Given the chaos surrounding the vaccine acquisitions and rollout, I’m more than comfortable going with the latter, which many Canadian experts seem to be calling for. This is not a theoretical debate going on against a backdrop of unlimited supply. There are more than enough differences of opinion within Canada for me to start looking to foreign experts. Fauci made lots of miscalls at the beginning and is not infallible, despite your intriguing image, and I see no reason to think our public health officials have performed worse than those elsewhere.

    Besides, what choice do we have? Canadian governments are going to rely on their experts. If the expert call is made to lengthen the space between doses, that’s what will happen. I’m not going to let my frustration with the situation and the bungling by the feds lead me to think I am qualified to have a credible opinion on this and weigh in on debates I really can’t understand.

  11. Pedant says:

    Dr. Fauci seems to think we should be under prolonged house arrest and permanent face-covering, as if we’re in Yemen.

    All to “save” the Baby Boomers who when young would have NEVER made such sacrifices for their elders.

  12. Martin says:

    A great man died last night.

  13. Martin says:

    Listening to JT and all of his “great news” right now. The bottom line is that we have dropped to 61st on vaccines into people’s arms. Only number that matters.

  14. True Liberal says:

    Come on Warren, time to get back on Team Justin. Dr. Fauci is yesterdays news, he was great when we wanted trump out but now he’s in the way of a true government for everyone, women, people of colour, a government of true feminism…..Justin believes in them all. You don’t want to be left behind with the NDP of God forbid the Conservatives. Come on Warren, come back and be one with the Liberals and their brave new world.

    • Douglas W says:

      I have no problem with the Liberals, leading the country.

      It’s the guy who’s leading the country right now …. he’s the guy I have a problem with.

      He and his mob are awful, and incompetent.

    • Ronald O'Dowd says:

      TL,

      Because I’ve got a big heart, I hear you and I’m going to help you out with reality. Liberals = utopia, other parties dystopia = living in fantasy land. You see, real Liberals are not Justinite Liberals: the conditional equal opportunist and ten shades of grey feminist. Some “brave new world” where trying to abide by the rule of law, ethics and in the best interests of Canada is ultimately rewarded with the true image that defines Justinite Liberals: getting quickly and summarily punted from “Team” Justinite Liberals. See ya on election day!

  15. Douglas W says:

    Real Liberals = Laurier, King, St. Laurent, Pearson, Chretien, Martin.

    Fiscally responsible + socially progressive.

    Trudeaus 1.0 + 2.0: anything but Liberals.

  16. Phil Brunet says:

    Fauci is a thoroughly bought carnival barker for Big Pharma. And they sure are getting their money’s worth.

Leave a Reply to Douglas W Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


*