Herland Report: Facebook Fact Checker Opinions: Facebook has admitted in a court of law that its fact checkers are not asserting facts but, rather, First Amendment-protected opinions.
Steve Kirsch, founder of the COVID-19 Early Treatment Fund, recorded a phone call with a fact checker from PolitiFact, showing just how ignorant the fact checker is about the facts, and how unwilling she is to look at the data.
There are three sources for vaccine injury data: The Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System (VAERS) on the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s Wonder site; OpenVAERS; and MedAlerts, created by the National Vaccine Information Center. Of these, MedAlerts has the easiest-to-use interface if you want to search and collate data.
What makes VAERS so valuable is the fact that you can find important safety signals that would otherwise be missed.
This is its intended function, and it works quite well for that, writes Dr. Joseph Mercola, an osteopathic physician, best-selling author and recipient of multiple awards in the field of natural health, his primary vision is to change the modern health paradigm by providing people with a valuable resource to help them take control of their health.
Fact checkers are now trying to dismiss VAERS data as unreliable at best and useless at worst. But they have a serious problem. The U.S. government had a clear duty, enshrined in law, to create a system to detect potential vaccine injuries.
If VAERS is useless, then government broke the law. In their zeal to protect Big Pharma, fact checkers may be inadvertently throwing government agencies under the bus.
Facebook Fact Checker Opinions: If you thought fact checkers were a source of unbiased facts, think again. Earlier this year, Facebook admitted, in a court of law, that its fact checkers are not asserting facts but rather “First Amendment-protected opinions.”1,2
A recent telephone recording by Steve Kirsch, founder of the COVID-19 Early Treatment Fund, in which he responds to a fact checker from PolitiFact, is equally revealing. The young woman clearly has no idea what she’s talking about, yet she’s been put into a position where she gets to be the sole and final arbiter of truth.
Why Use MedAlerts?
Facebook Fact Checker Opinions: The PolitiFact fact checker, Gabrielle Settles, contacted Kirsch with a number of questions. First, she wanted to know why he uses MedAlerts3 as a source rather than the Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System (VAERS) on the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s Wonder site.
VAERS was an outgrowth of the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act of 1986, a law that Barbara Loe Fisher, co-founder of the National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC), helped fight for. As you likely know, this site and many of you have supported NVIC with donations, which allows them to carry on their terrific work, including their MedAlerts VAERS database query tool.
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Facebook Fact Checker Opinions: Between 1990 and 2001, VAERS data were accessible only by filing a Freedom of Information Act request. In 2001, a VAERS website was created,4 and in 2006 the database was moved to CDC Wonder. The MedAlerts VAERS interface was created by the NVIC, which is the reason why fact checkers attack it. It went online April 9, 2003.
In response to Settles’ question, Kirsch explained that MedAlerts simply has a more user-friendly interface, while providing the same exact data as VAERS and OpenVAERS.
Are VAERS Data Valid?
Settles then moved on to question the validity of VAERS data in general. She pointed out that raw VAERS reports are not vetted and verified for accuracy, and that they cannot be used to prove causation. In other words, the fact that there are more than 24,400 deaths5 reported post-jab does not automatically mean that the shot was the cause of all those deaths.
Kirsch countered by pointing out that what makes VAERS so valuable is the fact that you can find important safety signals that would otherwise be missed. This is its intended function, and it works quite well for that.
For example, looking at the dosing data for myocarditis, you find that after the first dose, there are relatively few myocarditis cases reported, but after the second dose, reports explode. This kind of consistency in the data is very telling and not easily dismissed.
Fact checkers are now trying to dismiss VAERS data as unreliable at best and useless at worst. But they have a serious problem because the U.S. government had a clear duty, enshrined in law, to create a system to detect potential vaccine injuries.
If they now want to throw VAERS out, then the government is in a real pickle, because that means they did not create a functional and useful system. If VAERS is so seriously flawed as to be useless, then government has broken the law, and are duty bound to replace it with something that actually works. It’s a real Catch-22. In their zeal to protect Big Pharma, fact checkers may be inadvertently throwing government agencies under the bus.
Weak Hit Piece Tries to Salvage the Narrative
Facebook Fact Checker Opinions: PolitiFact published its NVIC/MedAlerts article February 28, 2022, under the title, “How an Alternative Gateway to VAERS Data Helps Fuel Vaccine Misinformation.”6 While clearly meant as a hit piece, it actually provides NVIC some much-needed publicity, even giving links to both its About Us and Reporting Options pages.
The main point of contention, however, is so weak it smacks of desperation. According to Settles, the government’s disclaimer — which states that VAERS reports can include information that is incomplete or inaccurate and doesn’t provide enough information to determine causation — isn’t prominent enough on the MedAlert’s website.
“Users who go to MedAlerts can search through VAERS reports without ever reading a government disclaimer,” Settles contends, adding that “unlike the CDC’s Wonder database, users on MedAlerts who don’t notice or click on the links won’t see the warnings about what they read.”
Without a clear understanding of the limitations of VAERS, MedAlert’s search results are “vulnerable … to misinterpretation by members of the public who are not trained to evaluate the information,” Settles insists. She goes on, “When government researchers use and interpret VAERS reports, they are not drawing conclusions based on the numbers alone but, rather, looking for patterns that warrant further study.”
The irony is that this is precisely what Kirsch and many others have been doing. VAERS is a tool that can help identify potential safety issues by looking at patterns and trends, but the total number of reports of a specific problem cannot be discounted because it’s part of the signal.
The fact of the matter is that there are many safety signals in the VAERS data, but those tasked with investigating them are refusing to do it. At this point, one wonders whether any U.S. agency can actually be trusted to conduct an unbiased investigation even if they decided to do one.
Settles also attacks Kirsch personally, dismissing his safety concerns by stating that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has chalked his claims up as being “not based in science.” Essentially, Settles’ article can be summed up as a desperate attempt to redirect people back to the CDC and FDA propaganda, which dismisses the now outlandishly large number of post-jab VAERS reports as being of no consequence.
Post-Jab Neurological Issues Were Under Investigation in 2021
Facebook Fact Checker Opinions: Meanwhile, The Epoch Times recently reported7 that “Two U.S. agencies have been quietly studying neurological problems that have appeared in people who have had COVID-19 vaccines.”
According to emails reviewed by The Epoch Times, Dr. Janet Woodcock, principal deputy director of the FDA, “has been personally evaluating neurologic side effects from the COVID-19 vaccines since at least Sept. 13, 2021.” In a November 16, 2021, email, Woodcock wrote:8
“We are having difficulty pinning down these nervous system-related events that have been brought to our attention. I’ve asked for specific searches of the reports we get both from here and ex-U.S. (as these vaccines have been used in many countries) as well as from trials, where oversight of participants is greater.”
Emails from Dr. Peter Marks, director of the FDA’s Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, which is in charge of the regulation of vaccines, suggest other FDA epidemiologists were also looking into it, as were a team at the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), which belongs to the National Institutes of Health. The NINDS supposedly started seeing vaccine injured patients in early 2021. According to The Epoch Times:9
“Dr. Avindra Nath, clinical director of the NIH’s NINDS, headed a team that examined patients who experienced serious neurological issues … Nath and Dr. Farinaz Safavi, one of Nath’s top deputies, have said they believe the issues are linked to the vaccines.
‘We started an effort at NIH to look at neurological side effects of COVID-19 vaccines,’ Safavi said in an email to one of the patients on March 3, 2021. ‘We believe the symptoms to be real. That is the reason we have been treating patients,’ Nath said in a different message on July 27, 2021.”
Were Patients Abandoned to Protect Big Pharma Profits?
While it’s tempting to see this as good news, there’s something really strange going on. For starters, none of these investigations was ever publicly announced. Why not?
What’s worse, as 2021 wore on, the research appears to have stalled and then been abandoned altogether. It’s hard to find another explanation for this other than they don’t want to do anything that might force them to take the COVID jab off the market.
“Even among those examined, the excitement of connecting with top researchers and government officials turned to disappointment and frustration when repeated queries yielded few signs of progress on research into post-vaccination problems,” The Epoch Times writes.10
“Woodcock and Marks would often only provide updates after being prodded … Nath and Safavi also grew distant as 2021 wore on. They eventually stopped examining patients.”
Brianne Dressen, who had been examined by Nath and given a diagnosis of “post-vaccine neuropathy,” suddenly hit a dead end as 2021 drew to a close. Nath would do no more for her, and also told her to stop referring patients to him, saying they did “not have any clinical trial for vaccine-related complications.” Epoch Times writes:
“Dressen responded in January that she will ‘always be indebted to you and what you did for me,’ crediting Nath … with keeping her alive. However, she added, her ‘heart is shattered.’
‘I am more confused now than ever about what my active and willing engagement in the scientific process actually meant, or has led to,’ she wrote … ‘Looking back on this, I can see how unethical it was even when they were helping us,’ Dressen told The Epoch Times.”
Another vaccine injured patient, Dr. Danice Hertz, who was seen virtually by NIH experts in early 2021, expressed similar feelings to The Epoch Times.
“Hertz described being shocked about the lack of public acknowledgement of the post-vaccination issues by the FDA … ‘They refuse to acknowledge what’s happening to so many thousands of people,’ Hertz told The Epoch Times. ‘We’ve been completely abandoned. And we’re despondent over it.’”11
Who Is Responsible to Investigate and Treat Side Effects?
Facebook Fact Checker Opinions: People who have been injured by the COVID jab are now in an incredibly tough situation, as doctors, government agencies and the vaccine makers are all refusing responsibility. In a September 16, 2021, email to Dressen, Nath wrote:12
“Ordinarily when any drug is released, it is the manufacturers responsibility to investigate and treat the side effects. Where are the vaccine manufacturers in all of this? Have you tried contacting them? It cannot be the government’s responsibility to pick up after them. They are a [for] profit company and they should be the ones taking change [sic]. Don’t you think?”
But vaccine makers are not investigating or treating side effects either. Why would they? They’ve been granted total immunity against liability. The only way they can be held responsible for damages is if they’re found guilty of willful misconduct or fraud.
Unfortunately, the FDA, CDC and NIH aren’t looking for misconduct or fraud. They’re covering it up. And mainstream media, including so-called “fact” checkers, have been bought wholesale by an industry that has every intention of obfuscating and hiding the truth about their products.
Why Media Have Embraced Censorship
Facebook Fact Checker Opinions: As noted by independent journalist Paul Thacker,13 mainstream media are refusing to call big tech censorship for what it is, in large part because they support, and indeed need, fake fact checks:
“Disinformation doesn’t have to be sophisticated when people believe what they read. Once this belief is established, censors ensure that disinformation remains strong, followed by denial that there is censoring. That way inconvenient facts do not mar the chosen story.”
In the COVID era, the chosen story includes the fantasy that the COVID jabs are safe and effective and have harmed no one, and there’s simply no way to prop up that story without fake fact checks.
Who Funds the Fake Fact Checkers?
It should come as no surprise then that fact checking organizations are funded by Big Pharma and Big Pharma PR companies like the Publicis Groupe, which also happens to be a partner of both Google14,15 and the World Economic Forum (WEF).16
Pfizer, for example, funds Facebook’s fact checking operation.17 Is it any wonder then that Facebook rejects anything that criticizes the COVID jabs? Pfizer also has significant conflicts of interest with Reuters. Reuters chairman (and former CEO) James Smith is both a top investor and board member of Pfizer.18 Might he have a vested interest in keeping Pfizer’s media record clear of incriminating details?
Many fact checking organizations also belong to the International Fact-Checking Network,19 which is financed by George Soros (through his Open Society Foundation and the National Endowment for Democracy), Google and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation20 — all of whom are part of the WEF’s technocratic cabal that is pushing for a Great Reset.
Truth Tellers Have Data, Liars Have None
Facebook Fact Checker Opinions: To end where we began, with the fact check on Kirsch and the NVIC’s MedAlert, a few days after posting his conversation with Settles, he received an email from PolitiFact’s editor-in-chief, Angie Holan, asking him to remove the recording. He refused. In a February 25, 2022, Substack post, Kirsch wrote:21
“Gabrielle asked if she could record the call and I consented, so that entitles all parties to record the call. PolitiFact did not deny that we both consented. She wrote, ‘I am not in the least embarrassed by how she conducted the interview. I’m asking that you remove the video as a professional courtesy because the reporter did not consent to be recorded.’
First of all, she should be embarrassed by the interview. The interviewer was clearly focused on proving an agenda and showed no interest in exploring evidence that was counter her agenda. I gave her the story of the century if she would just follow up on what I suggested she do.
Secondly with respect to permission, by asking me if it was OK to record the call, she is giving implied consent for the call to be recorded since she is doing the asking. All parties on the call consented to being recorded meaning the conversation is no longer private and all parties can record the call.
I then raised the stakes: I challenged PolitiFact to a debate to settle the matter once and for all in front of a live Internet audience as to who are the liars and who are the truth tellers …
Of course, the problem with a debate is that usually one side wins. If it is the misinformation spreaders, the narrative is crushed. This is why nobody wants a debate: they can’t take the risk.
PolitiFact can’t win a fair debate. There is way too much information out now on how dangerous the vaccines are that is impossible for them to explain. This is why I don’t think that there is a snowball’s chance in hell they will accept.”
Indeed, the chances of PolitiFact accepting an invitation to debate someone like Kirsch, who has all of his ducks in a row, is slim to none. In fact, it’s probably because of the excellent data analysis of Kirsch and others that the CDC has started withholding certain data on COVID jab injuries and hospitalizations. The reason given is that “they might be misinterpreted as the vaccines being ineffective.” But as noted by Kirsch:22
“The only way the vaccine data could be interpreted as ineffective by us ‘misinformation spreaders’ is if the data shows the vaccines don’t work … The CDC long-standing policy is that no information can be released that may threaten the national vaccination initiative.
This isn’t about public safety. This is about not letting the public know the vaccines are killing them … Let’s be clear. The CDC hid the data because the data proves they were lying to us. That’s the real reason.”
- 1 wattsupwiththat.com John Stossel Lawsuit against Meta Platforms (PDF)
- 2 WND December 10, 2021
- 3 MedAlerts
- 4 VAERS.HHS.gov
- 5 OpenVAERS Data as of February 18, 2022
- 6 PolitiFact February 28, 2022
- 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 The Epoch Times February 20, 2022 (Archived)
- 13 Jospi.org February 22, 2022
- 14 Ad Week September 22, 2008
- 15 Google Marketing Platform Partners, Publicis Sapient
- 16 World Economic Forum, Publicis Groupe
- 17 The National Pulse February 25, 2022
- 18 The National Pulse December 1, 2021
- 19 Poynter IFCN
- 20 Poynter.org About the IFCN
- 21 Steve Kirsch Substack February 25, 2022
- 22 Steve Kirsch Substack February 21, 2022