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The Editorial Board of the Wall Street Journal looks back on the reign of Fauci during the era of covid [2]. Three slices:

He and a passel of public-health experts used their authority to lobby for broad economic lockdowns that we now know were far more destructive than they needed to be. He also lobbied for mask and vaccine mandates that were far less protective than his assertions to the public. Dr. Fauci’s influence was all the greater because he had an echo chamber in the press corps and among public elites who disdained and ostracized dissenters.

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Worse, Dr. Fauci smeared the few brave scientists who opposed blanket lockdowns and endorsed a strategy of “focused protection” on the elderly and those at high risk. This was the message of the Great Barrington Declaration authors, and emails later surfaced showing that Dr. Fauci worked with others in government to deride that alternative so it never got a truly fair public hearing.

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The costs of that mindset have been severe, and not merely economic. We know now that states that locked down fared no better, and sometimes worse, than those that didn’t. We also know that the vaccines, while invaluable against serious disease, don’t prevent the spread of Covid—even after multiple boosters. More honest candor would have been better for America’s trust in public-health authorities.

Also looking back on Fauci’s calamitous reign during covid is Michael Senger [3]. A slice:

These lockdowns were unprecedented [4] in the western world and weren’t part of any democratic country’s pandemic plan prior to Xi Jinping’s lockdown of Wuhan, China. However, they did cause Americans to believe the virus was hundreds of times deadlier than it really was. For this, Fauci became [5] “America’s doctor.”

And here’s Reason‘s Robby Soave on Fauci [6]. A slice:

No public official, not even President Joe Biden himself, personifies the U.S. government’s pandemic approach quite like Fauci, who quite deliberately positioned himself as the avatar of correct COVID-19 behavior. Fauci even said that critics who undermined him were attacking science itself [7].

These critics have grown more numerous over the course of the pandemic as Fauci’s miscalculations became more evident. He has confessed to telling nobles lies [8] — to giving the public information he thought was wrong in order to serve some other goal. He downplayed the effectiveness of masks, purportedly out of concern that there wouldn’t be enough of them for hospitals. He also told the public that the herd immunity threshold was lower than his actual mental estimation [9]; in the end, neither figure was accurate, since COVID-19 is able to evade both infection-acquired and immunity-acquired protection.

Fauci became a passionate advocate of mask-wearing, also pressing the public to engage in all kinds of social distancing measures. When criticized for supporting lockdowns, mask mandates, and other COVID-19 mitigation efforts, he has claimed that he only offered guidance, and did not personally authorize the relevant government orders. Many municipalities never felt like they had any choice to disregard missives from federal health officials; local authorities that did chart alternative courses were derided as science-deniers and practitioners of human sacrifice [10] by Fauci sycophants in the media.

When I interviewed [11] Fauci in July, he admitted to making just one mistake: He said that if he could repeat the COVID-19 pandemic, he would recommend lockdowns, mask mandates, and social distancing measures that were “much, much more stringent.” Some people might take note of the dwindling evidence [12] that government mandates led to vastly preferable pandemic outcomes and wonder whether investing a massive bureaucracy with the power to bully millions of people into social isolation, unemployment [13], and juvenile delinquency [14] was worth it; not Fauci, though. If he could do it all again, the bullying would only increase.

The disastrous effect of pandemic lockdowns on children is at risk of being forgotten, the former children’s commissioner [in Britain] has warned. [15]

Niall McCrae tells a real-life tale of covid authoritarianism – the sort of event that, if humanity were to regain its senses, will be regarded in the year 2222 in much the same way that we in 2022 regard witch trials of centuries ago [16].

Jay Bhattacharya tells Julia Hartley-Brewer that “Lockdown was a catastrophic failure, probably the worst peacetime, public-health policy in history.” [17]

John Stossel identifies one silver lining to the covid calamity: “It taught parents that there are better alternatives to government schools.” [18] A slice:

“Don’t tell me school choice is racist!” says Denisha Merriweather, founder of the new group Black Minds Matter. Choice opponents “are implying that parents, especially lower-income, Black parents, should stay trapped in public schools that have failed their children for decades [19],” she notes. “We need a new system . . . empowered by parents.”

School choice increases diversity, adds Liv Finne of the Washington Policy Center’s Center for Education. “Modern-day school vouchers lead to more ethnic and racial integration in the schools, not less.”

One poll showed that 74% of African Americans and 71% of Latinos support school choice.

Choice opponents are mostly unions, establishment Democrats and frightened suburban Republicans.

Michael Strain examines the worrying decline in labor-force participation in the U.S. [20]

Here’s wise advice from Barry Brownstein [21].

Congratulations to Richard Ebeling for being awarded an honorary doctorate by the Universidad Francisco Marroquin [22].