As never before, there is community synergy, there is a sense of country, and a passion for progress. That and not delusions about “masking” need to occupy our energy and attention
– Pic by Shehan Gunasekara
One might argue that a country engrossed in turmoil like Sri Lanka, besieged with economic crisis, experiencing a crisis of confidence certainly in the current Government – with the political elite overall – with skyrocketing prices and heartbreaking shortages of everything from fuel to food to medicines would not waste time getting distracted by discredited quackery about ‘masking.’
Yet somehow, in the post-COVID hysteria and hypnosis, this retains an infuriating death grip on the popular imagination.
The Health Ministry having initially relaxed some COVID fetishes like outdoor masking, seems to have spurred spasms of disquiet from certain quarters, leading to a “temporary suspension” of its own initiative.
We were told that “mask wearing is among the basic COVID-19 protective measures…interwoven with regular handwashing and physical distancing”. There is a suggestion, however, that even outdoors in a crowded setting it would be irrational not to wear a mask.
Piling on, a well-known professor claims that “all questions which validate the relaxation of mandatory face mask wearing” must be answered clearly without any ambiguity, otherwise “such recommendations cannot be scientifically validated.”
There’s a further shout out for keeping physical distance even when masked and a statement, “hand hygiene is also a must.”
Everything above is inaccurate
Just out of interest, on the same day that the Health Ministry made its declaration, a US Federal judge struck down as illegal, on the basis of all medical evidence presented, the mask mandates on board airplanes and airports in the United States.
Within hours, airlines gleefully ditched the requirement, making public announcements to that effect and even Uber joined in the chorus. This was celebrated in many of the US States which have not had mask mandates since 2021, such as Florida, Georgia, and Texas.
And the health outcomes in these States have been better than heavily masked States like New York and California which invalidates essentially all the blather quoted above.
Of course, the White House bemoaned the verdict, though, in a sign of its acceptance of it, made no indication it would appeal the ruling initially. And then seeing the firestorm of populist outrage, backpedalled and said they would “appeal.” Tommyrot knows no global boundaries.
In an attempt to take you through the most recent studies, and science, and the now amply accumulated evidence of the ‘masquerade’ inflicted upon us, let me make just a few canopy points here before we dive in.
Outdoor transmission is bogus
First, as MIT reaffirmed, on the basis of a comprehensive study, also as then reported on by the New York Times, there is no confirmed recorded instance of outdoor transmission, period! The US CDC wouldn’t go so far, but said likelihood was less than 1%!
Secondly, since oxygen enriched air is destructive to viruses, putting a face nappy on makes no sense.
Third, we know now for some time this is an airborne virus. It is not primarily spread through fomites. Therefore, physical distancing is a chimera. When something is wafting through the air, standing apart from someone especially outdoors is absurd.
Oxford University reports that the likelihood of anyone catching C-19 through a physical surface, given the airborne nature, is miniscule.
“Finally,” said Lindsey Marr, an expert on airborne viruses (in the NY Times), “We’ve known this for a long time and yet people are still focusing so much on surface cleaning. There’s really no evidence that anyone has ever gotten COVID-19 by touching a contaminated surface.” On the basis of the results of the studies, the US CDC says, “the chance of getting SARS CoV-2 infection from a contaminated surface is less than 1 in 10,000.”
Hand hygiene has been overwrought, and the hand sanitisers actually damage the protective barrier of the skin undermining our immunity towards not only this, but countless other pathogens.
On the outdoor transmission front again, leaving MIT aside, we now have an overwhelming accretion of crowded physical gatherings outdoors and frankly even indoors ranging from stadia, concert halls, protests, celebrations with nary a surge or spike that has been convincingly correlated with them globally.
This includes occasions like The Grammys, Ascot, as well as world political leaders posing in their masks and then photographed partying together in relative physical intimacy with nary a face covering in sight, scant moments later.
Sweden is one of the few countries in Europe over this fevered Covidian period that had no excess mortality below 70 despite masks in crowds being optional, illegal in many settings (because they are veritable petri dishes of bacteria, soot and dirt after a day’s wearing, being pulled in and out of pockets, being left on countertops, being coughed into and more).
Inside our lungs are tiny sacs that exchange CO2 for oxygen. With each breath, these alveoli facilitate the transaction of CO2, which the body exhales, for oxygen, which we inhale. This oxygenates the blood and boosts immune function. A mask, however, traps CO2 inside the lungs while blocking oxygen intake. This has been demonstrated in the study to create a chemical imbalance inside the body, leaving it more prone to infection and disease. The study itself cites more than 400 other studies that prove the masks provide no benefits and/or are harmful
To be more specific, in a ranking of industrialised countries, all infatuated with masking and lockdowns (Sweden also had open schools and no lockdowns), in terms of cumulative excess deaths from 2019 to now, Sweden has lower excess deaths substantially than Spain, Germany, Canada, Finland, South Korea, Denmark, New Zealand, Australia and Norway! How can that be possible if the mask religion has an iota of credibility? (This ranking is from “Human Mortality Database”)
Sweden’s economy is faster rebounding, and these health stats were true pre-vaccination as well as post vaccination. Again, Florida since September 2021 became an American showcase for the same phenomenon.
Looked at the other way, some of the greatest surges (albeit from the unreliable PCR tests) occurred in the most ‘vaxxed’ jurisdictions like Iceland, Israel, France, California, the UK, among many others.
China, in fact, an avatar of draconian masking, clearly has been anything but protected by this silly fetish, as trapped people pleading for food and water, some jumping out of buildings, in Shanghai can readily attest to.
In the face of all that, one has to admire the supreme detachment from reality posing as ‘medicine’ so pompously and definitively circulated by WHO acolytes.
Masks simply are “non-science”
The SARS-CoV-2 virus, an airborne virus that spreads mainly via minute aerosols, can pass through the pores of masks. It has a diameter of 0.1 microns, or 0.0001 mm. Cloth mask pore diameter is 80.500 microns; surgical mask is 19.3 microns. The mask might arrest large droplets, but with each breath the virus can readily pass through the pores.
“The pooled results of (67) randomized trials did not show a clear reduction in respiratory viral infection with the use of medical/surgical masks during seasonal influenza.” (Jefferson et al, Cochrane Library, November 2020).
In the heyday of their earlier evidentiary sanity, we have this statement from WHO, December 2020 re mask impact, “Several studies have demonstrated statistically significant deleterious effects on various cardiopulmonary physiologic parameters during mild to moderate exercise in healthy subjects and those with underlying respiratory diseases.”
WHO went onto list mask disadvantages in December 2020: discomfort, headaches, breathing difficulties, self-contamination, facial lesions, false sense of security and poor compliance, difficulty with communication, among others.
No new evidence has emerged that contradicts these findings, and yet for clearly political reasons, there was a sea change – mirrored also by Dr. Fauci in the US who first avidly discouraged mask wearing as ineffective, and then did a catapult with no explanation other than deferring to the new theology he helped script.
The two randomised trials, Denmark and Bangladesh (which excluded swathes of its own data in its summary) failed to show any material impact from mask wearing either. The frenzy to keep the Danish study from publication, until they “diluted” their conclusions is a masterclass in censorship and “manipulation” posing as science.
The one study, called the “WHO Mask Study” hailing from June 2020 which was pivotal as an “exhibit” in changing the global policies, all of which were unanimously “anti-masking” until then, is on the cusp of farce.
The Swiss Doctor, an online authority and fact-checker, meticulously mining data (www.swprs.org) itemises major flaws (from misclassification of findings, to relying on observational studies, to drawing on studies about other viruses in lieu of C-19, to highlighting hospital rather than community transmission, to drawing on Beijing phone interviews re SARS 1) all of which led University of Toronto epidemiology professor Peter Jueni to call the study “methodologically flawed” and “essentially useless.” The authors of the study themselves confessed that the “certainty” of the evidence is “low.”
And then, though ignored, WHO itself did not deny the allegation that their masking “recommendation” was due to political lobbying and not reviewing this evidence (reported by UK medical correspondent, Deborah Cohen, medically qualified, 2019 British Journalism Award winner).
Further recent studies
And new science is not kind to this fiction either. A Harvard study just published in the journal “Nature Communications” indicates that merely “breathing fights off respiratory viruses.”
Apparently, the natural exchange of carbon dioxide waste for fresh oxygen in the lungs, also known as respiration, is a powerful antiviral activity that masks directly interfere with, putting the body at risk.
Inside our lungs are tiny sacs that exchange CO2 for oxygen. With each breath, these alveoli facilitate the transaction of CO2, which the body exhales, for oxygen, which we inhale. This oxygenates the blood and boosts immune function.
The sheer outcomes globally, which show no correspondence between masking and case surges, much less mortality, argues this is simply a silly badge of faith among the “panic porn peddlers.” We have had protests in Lanka for several weeks now, with scant mask wearing, with no “eruptions” of even PCR distorted “cases”
A mask, however, traps CO2 inside the lungs while blocking oxygen intake. This has been demonstrated in the study to create a chemical imbalance inside the body, leaving it more prone to infection and disease. The study itself cites more than 400 other studies that prove the masks provide no benefits and/or are harmful.
As stated before, the sheer outcomes globally, which show no correspondence between masking and case surges, much less mortality, argues this is simply a silly badge of faith among the “panic porn peddlers.” We have had protests in Lanka for several weeks now, with scant mask wearing, with no “eruptions” of even PCR distorted “cases”.
The Harvard study utilised a “lung chip” to mimic the mechanical forces of breathing and evaluating the uptake of “dead” influenza bugs, revealed and/or confirmed that breathing is itself an anti-viral activity. “The simple act of breathing also exercises the lungs, stretching and relaxing them with every inhalation and exhalation…which naturally combats infection.”
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention relaxed its rules on mask-wearing in February, with about 70% of Americans no longer required to wear any face-coverings indoors much less outdoors. But here in the “magical kingdom” of masked Serendib, the fact that months later, no issues have emerged from that, does not dent the dogmatic certainty of our alarmists.
Israel, well into a fourth masked surge, flailing with boosters and every other expedient says, as per Prime Minister Natfali Bennett and Health Minister Nitzan Horowitz, “Face masks in enclosed spaces will no longer be required, beginning this Saturday at 8 pm.” Israel is not prone to taking such decisions until having been repeatedly bludgeoned by reality.
England lifted mask mandates 26 January, Scotland has not. Daily new cases in England are dramatically lower than Scotland as of April. Again, how is that possible? Well, easily, as masks are spurious and irrelevant.
In the UK, during a “surge period” of 13 March to 26 March, well after mask mandates had been lifted, in a review of those who claimed masks were needed “sometimes” or needed “never” versus “always”, there was virtually no difference in likelihood of being tested positive (and that from the sham PCR test).
The source is the Office of National Statistics (ONS) in its “Coronavirus Infection Survey.” Among children who “never” wore masks versus those who “always” did, both were equally likely to test positive. Similar findings with adults. Utter shrieking irrelevance.
It is therefore extremely difficult to reduce so called “infections” (positive tests) by introducing restrictions that clearly do nothing to reduce infections! Only the death of sanity keeps this insanity solvent.
The toddler masking in New York City while its new Mayor got tested positive shows us the theatrical farce this is, to protect the vicious, stupid adults whose ignorance and obliviousness have continued to blight the lives of this younger generation.
Hong Kong, with 98% mask compliance has four times the newly reported deaths than even the US has ever had, in percentage terms. In fact, deaths in Hong Kong are now 2.5 times higher than they were in Italy’s first wave!
So, months and months of accumulated global data showing no impact, confirms that in the midst of a national meltdown and a constitutional crisis and an economic disaster, we continue to deal with medical “spin,” a pointless, vicious, unending cycle of face muzzling, virtue signalling, oxygen deprivation, by virtue of data illiteracy, cowardice and incompetent groupthink, to pander to fears we’ve relentlessly stoked through 24/7 panic porn.
For those who enjoy a bit of research, the 150 studies debunking mask efficacy is quite a diverting read: https://brownstone.org/articles/more-than-150-comparative-studies-and-articles-on-mask-ineffectiveness-and-harms/.
“Expertise” is largely a fiction, except where there is no data and we have to extrapolate, or where the data converges clearly on a conclusion, and we need to understand it.
But when blatantly contradicted by facts, how many signatories with how many credentials signed on to “flat earth thinking” is quite irrelevant.
The expert classes in the opining sweepstakes cultivate the right allies, get on the right side of an official narrative, publish in the right journals and “legitimise” prevailing points of view.
These trivialities instil great joy in those, who under the guise of some field, are actually advancing careerist goals. This is not a critique, it’s a natural expression of aspiration. But we somehow feel that’s understood in corporate circles, but “hush hush” in say the medical field. Well, it’s as funding driven as anything.
“Expertise” which we abandoned – the accumulated pandemic playbook up to 2019 – and the “appearance” of expertise (opinions expressed by mainstream credentialed people to bolster a case) often get blurred.
“Experts” are too often consensus-establishing and consensus propagating professionals. And what they present are not “theories”, but cherry picked “arguments” to validate “x” or “y” point of view. Arguments are assembled they way materials are assembled for a house, my Professor of Logic at Oxford University often reminded us.
But if genuine “understanding” is conflated with “persuasion,” then we end up like the feckless “specialists” promoting “masking” and other remedies that are clearly contrary to readily observable reality and a deluge of global data.
What we can deploy though is the “parallel universe” test rightly extolled by the wonderful commentator, writing from Germany, calling himself “Eugyppius.”
Essentially you ask, given this data, what type of universe am I likely inhabiting? “In what universe would this data be prevalent?”
So, we can say, simply by comparing US States that do and don’t have mask mandates, and frankly just the case results of everywhere that has “surged” in the last year, that “mask mandates” fail, on the sheer data, every population-wide test they are put through.
Jurisdictions that require masks have outcomes indistinguishable from those that don’t. Germany and Sweden (roughly 9% mask compliance), pre and post “vaccination,” make that unimpeachably clear.
So, you would expect those facts in a universe where masks don’t work and are frankly irrelevant. To posit a universe where masks “work” but their efficacy is cloaked by an avalanche of factors that are perfectly calibrated to produce results in synch with maskless jurisdictions…this is science fiction territory writ large.
You can apply this to many things. In which universe would a SARS-related virus, whose earliest cases are claimed to be from Wuhan, have its closest relative in a nearby lab in the freezer? Does that tilt the scales towards or away from “lab research” being somehow implicated?
And can we think of anything more irrelevant to Sri Lanka’s current plight than whether people do or don’t wear a face nappy outdoors given no surge nationally, even of faux “cases” from PCR and no surge in excess mortality. Globally yet again, no demonstration of any outdoor spread, even in large gatherings like the Trucker’s Protests in Canada which led to no outbreaks despite virtually no masking or distancing. And remember given what they were protesting, they were “unvaccinated” as well.
How much evidence do you stockpile before “possibility” and not just “probability” collapses?
Back to Lanka
And in what universe would we expect to see leaders blaming COVID, when neighbouring countries built up their foreign reserves by 30-40% and we depleted ours by about 80%?
And in what universe would we expect these leaders to tighten their blinkers re organic fertilisers (overwhelming evidence to the contrary), studiously avoid debt restructuring while the deluge gets ever more evident, and still strut around when we cannot provide power, or affordable food, or medicines?
And in what universe would someone think the relevant metric is that they were voted in, not the debacle since? Being entrusted with national stewardship and populating the government with a cabal of cronies and evident incompetents, and a family mafia, while the above results take place, says what exactly?
But there is also sadly, no universe in which street protests by themselves, translate to new governance. We are getting to the point where the disruptions to travel and economic flow will hurt the economy further, body blows we can’t survive right now.
So, somehow we need to occupy the universe of practical results, and channel the inspiration of the people’s movement to drive key levers of change: repealing the 20th Amendment, giving Parliament oversight over finances for now, appointing an independent commission with private sector experts to deliver on critical short-term must win battles (IMF, fuel and power, exchange rate stability, galvanising tourism, firing up the export engine, driving key Constitutional amendments, establishing the parameters of democratic governance, etc.), allowing a new political party to form which can prepare to contest upcoming elections.
We need to now transmute the ore of outrage and anger and justified conviction into the gold of progress, and viability and leveraging Lanka’s talents and assets productively and with focus and discipline and enterprise.
As never before, there is community synergy, there is a sense of country, and a passion for progress. That and not delusions about “masking” (we’ve had enough things cloaked by now) need to occupy our energy and attention.
(The writer is the founder and CEO of EPL Global and founder of Sensei Lanka, a global consultant with over 30 years strategic leadership experience and now, since March 2020, a globally recognised COVID researcher and commentator.)