It is a tight contest over which U.S. regulatory agency is most captured by industry. But leading the pack is surely the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Many of us in the past believed the main problem with the agency was the costs it imposed on industry. The situation turns out to be more complicated. Whatever its past, it’s become an industry-dominated vending machine for drug approvals enacted with a very expensive rubber stamp.
The ordeal of the COVID vaccine proved it. So long as the check cleared, the FDA was ready with committee-based approvals for which no one in particular took responsibility. On Aug. 31, 2021, as the FDA was preparing to approve boosters for a variant that had already been superseded, two top officials resigned in protest: Marion Gruber, director of the Office of Vaccines Research and Review, and her deputy, Phil Krause.
They just couldn’t be part of the unfolding disaster. These were principled decisions. They should have marked a complete upheaval in the agency. But because hardly anyone in the mainstream media cared, and because both the agency and the industry decided to look the other way and pretend like it didn’t matter, the resignations without precedent made no difference at all.
And here we are in mid-2023 and agency capture is more intense than ever. No one doubts it. But it never ends with just financial and regulatory corruption. There is another stage, which is suppressing information and censorship. One might suppose that the FDA would have nothing to do with that end of things. But that would be wrong.
The FDA has now joined the censorship crowd, in effect masquerading as the one source of truth regarding pharmaceuticals.
“Inaccurate information spreads widely and at speed,” the agency says, “making it more difficult for the public to identify verified facts and advice from trusted sources, such as the FDA. However, everyone can help to stop the spread. If you see content online that you believe to be false or misleading, you can report it to the applicable platform:”
What follows at the FDA’s site are links to all the mainstream social media platforms and a method of reporting wrongthink. Note especially the invocation of the slogan “Stop the spread.” Yes, we heard that during the whole of COVID. It was never clear what the purpose of the slogan was in the first place. The spread simply could not be stopped. The virus did what it wanted to do and everyone got hit and nearly everyone recovered with a stronger immune system than before.
So “Stop the spread” was always a pretext for human control by the state. It was never anything else. And now we see the FDA appropriating the same language to shut down open discussion of what the heck happened to this agency over the last three years. Keep in mind that the top experts at the FDA itself have penned denunciations of the agency’s own processes. It’s hardly “disinformation.”
At the link at the FDA itself, there is a 55-second video that is straight out of Orwell. If someone claims that the government is up to no good, the agency says that this is very clearly wrong. You should verify that claim against “nonprofit fact checking organizations” (which are controlled by government) or “a government resource,” as if these are the only two credible venues out there.
The FDA is coming very close to saying that if the government does not confirm it, it is not true. The first time I heard such a preposterous claim it was from Jacinda Ardern, the one-time dictator of New Zealand who flat out told the national media that the government would “continue to be the one source of truth.” When I heard that, I immediately assumed she would be shouted down by every civilized person on the planet.
The opposite happened. Ardern instead was lauded and praised, winning a top speaking slot at Harvard and was cheered by know-nothing students. And now the British royal family has conferred on her the title Dame Ardern for her “service” to New Zealand. This woman is probably the single most hated leader in the whole of that country’s history and yet King Charles has decided that her service is worthy of a royal title.
This censorship stuff is no longer an aberration, a mistake made in panic, a secret plot to violate settled norms, or something about which these people are embarrassed once caught. Censorship has become the main agenda of many governments in the world today. It is being codified by the European Union, promoted by NATO, and institutionalized in every regulatory bureaucracy.
And there is a feeling of panic in the air about all of this, almost as if these agencies and industries are freaking out about losing control and desperate to regain the monopoly that they believe they once had. They have every intention of ramping up the spying, putting more pressure on social media, and otherwise deploying every trick in the book for clamping down on those who would dare to disagree.
Over the last three years, we’ve discovered that the best information about the virus and the vaccines has come from outside the agency and from unexpected sources. I invite you to peruse the archive of writing by Dr. Maryanne Demasi at Brownstone, for example. Here you will find extensive and highly documented proof that this agency is captured, manipulating data for industrial ends, and tricking the population into accepting medicines they don’t need and are not proven either safe or effective.
If government posited itself as one source of information among many, that would be one thing. We could take it with a grain of salt. But that is not what is happening. Governments around the world are positing themselves to gain the full monopoly on information and doing it through surreptitious means that fly in the face of the whole ethos of freedom itself, and with the ironic result of the triumph of misinformation and disinformation.
We must realize that these efforts can no longer be written off as weird aberrations. The push is organized, focused, intense, and involves security agencies at the highest levels. They have made their peace with the idea of hardcore censorship and will push it as far as it can go.
There is another worry too. Right now, there are myriad lawsuits extant that are challenging the cooperation between industry and government to restrict the free-speech rights of citizens. These lawsuits are succeeding. Discovery has unearthed a vast amount of proof that all of this is taking place in a very nonchalant way, as if it were perfectly normal for government to insist that social media companies block information they don’t like, even that which is admitted to be true.
These legal efforts seem to be succeeding. So why does this continue? Why is every agency, even the FDA, ramping up its censorship campaigns? Do they not care? My worry is that their power is so out of control that they frankly do not care what the courts say. Not even the Supreme Count has a police force to enforce its judgments. From what I can tell, the collaboration between government and industry is so tight and normalized that they have every intention to keep it up even after the courts slap them all down.
What are free people supposed to do then?
The government has effectively announced that it considers free speech to be a pandemic. And we know how they deal with pandemics: lockdown.