Google’s YouTube has intensified its draconian censorship of a sitting U.S. senator.
The powerful video sharing company removed a video of a speech given by Senator Ron Johnson of Wisconsin and banned him from uploading new videos for at least seven days. The action took place several months after YouTube removed two videos of testimony given during a hearing he hosted by the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs on the subject of early treatment of COVID-19.
In the video, which YouTube censors forbid the public to watch, Johnson called on bureaucrats in the Trump and Biden administration to “not only ignore but work against robust research. [on] the use of inexpensive, generic drugs to be reused for early treatment of COVID. ”
While major pharmaceutical companies and their allies in government bureaucracies and the World Health Organization have focused their research and funding on new treatments for the new coronavirus, some doctors and studies have argued for the use of drugs that have been on the market for decades. The patents for the substances have expired, which means that they are now manufactured by several companies that will share in the profits. Therefore, trials of the drugs must be funded by the government and private donors.
Johnson noted that he held two hearings on early treatment of COVID-1
“It always told me that there was such a concerted effort to deny the American public that kind of robust investigation for early treatment early in this pandemic,” Johnson said, explaining why he wanted to bring more focus to this issue. He noted that studies have shown that “both hydroxychloroquine and ivermectin” are “incredibly safe” substances.
Both drugs have been on the market for decades and are recommended for various uses, such as Lupus and scabies. Currently, the National Institutes of Health recommends against the use of hydroxychloroquine for the treatment of COVID-19, after a study showed that it did no harm but gave no benefit. The NIH is currently neutral regarding the use of ivermectin for COVID-19, a change from an earlier recommendation against its use.
While most pharmaceutical companies and research funding countries do not rate the two drugs for robust study, some recent studies have supported advocates’ hopes for treatment. See, for example, this study awaiting peer review on positive results associated with multidrug treatment including hydroxychloroquine, and this similar as yet unreviewed study out of Argentina on ivermectin.
YouTube said it censored the discussion of the drug as part of its policy against “medical misinformation”, saying it would not allow anything that “contradicts local health authorities” or the World Health Organization (WHO) medical information on COVID-19 . ”
WHO researchers and other local authorities have changed their position on whether masks are ineffective or should be doubled, whether a vaccine can be developed in a few months, whether asymptomatic spread was a problem, whether spread via infected surfaces, whether children were involved significant risk from the virus, whether the economic lockdown would only require “15 days to flatten the curve” or more than a year, and whether the new coronavirus appeared natural or accidentally leaked out of the Wuhan Institute of Virology.
YouTube’s position is that the content on the site should parrot no matter what comes from its narrow set of authorities, although their position changes frequently and dramatically as more is learned about the new coronavirus.
YouTube has left uncensored a long video chat between Bret Weinstein and Dr. Pierre Kory, a prominent advocate for the treatment of COVID-19 patients with ivermectin. The duo discussed the topic of censorship of debate and discussion on effective treatment of COVID-19 patients.
Weinstein said, “There’s something about the mindset at the moment when it’s all about peer review and these published peer-reviewed papers, and it’s about the ‘official guidance’ from the WHO and the CDC. It is basically a kind of intellectual authoritarianism that is so bizarre in the context of a complex system like medicine, especially in the context of a whole new disease that we are not all experts in. There are no experts that we can simply fail. Everyone is a novice. ”
In the censored video, Johnson said he supports Operation Warp Speed, which quickly tracks vaccines, but that more early treatment is needed for COVID-19 patients. “I thought it was brilliant how the Trump administration was squeezing all the economic efficiencies out of producing the vaccine, but I think we still need early treatments,” as coronavirus does not go away, he said.
He noted that some “world-renowned experts … have come to a different conclusion than our health agencies” and that the health agencies “pretty much sabotaged the possibility that many doctors are even considering hydroxychloroquine, ivermectin or any of these multidrugs generic recycling approaches here . ”
When YouTube censored videos of the Senate’s testimony, Johnson wrote for the Wall Street Journal about it. “The censors on YouTube have decided for all of us that the American public should not be able to hear what senators heard. They are apparently wiser than doctors who have devoted their lives to science and use their skills to save lives. They have decided that only a medical point of view is allowed and that is the point of view dictated by government agencies. “Government-sanctioned censorship of ideas and speech must frighten us all,” he wrote.
In April, Google pulled a video of Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis on March 18 discussing COVID-19 with medical researchers Dr. Jay Bhattacharya, Dr. Sunetra Gupta, Dr. Martin Kulldorff and Dr. Scott Atlas, who all come from elite institutions – Stanford University, Harvard University and Oxford University.
“For science to work, you have to have an open exchange of ideas,” Bhattacharya said of the censorship. “If you want to argue that something is wrong information, you have to put forward an actual argument. You can not just take it down and say ‘Oh, that’s misinformation’ without actually giving a reason. And saying ‘See it disagrees with the CDC’ is not enough for a reason. Let’s hear the argument, let’s see the evidence that YouTube used to decide it was misinformation. Let’s discuss. Science works best when we have an open debate. ”
Kulldorf also weighed in and said at a press conference in April: “I am very concerned about the future of science because science depends on the free exchange of ideas, and it has been for 300 years now. So if this continues, this kind of attitude, censorship of scientific views, then I think we have reached the end of 200 years of enlightenment. ”