Fauci: I should have been ‘much, much more careful’ with pandemic messaging, but ‘no one’s perfect’

Whatever Dr. Anthony Fauci does or doesn’t know about The Science™ may one day be determined by a trial. In the meantime, the outgoing director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) confessed there was an aspect of the pandemic he could have been “more careful” with, but the only science it dealt with was political.

Joining The Washington Post’s national health reporter Dan Diamond for a virtual seminar hosted by the University of Southern California’s Center for Health Journalism on Tuesday, Fauci once again defended his choices during a conversation titled “From COVID to Monkeypox.”

After some buildup where the NIAID director marched through the familiar territories of panic porn, cautioning against the dangers of “sublineage” variants that could become dominant strains in the winter, Diamond asked pointedly if there was anything Fauci would have said or done differently.

“You know, the answer is yes, Dan. I mean, my goodness, no one’s perfect,” the doctor offered in a rare show of humility. “Certainly I am not.”

Unfortunately, the act was short-lived as Fauci expanded on his message being the problem rather than his push for draconian lockdowns that upended the world to which the true cost may never be known.

“When I go back in the early months, I probably should have tried to be much, much more careful in getting the message to repeat the uncertainty of what we’re going through,” he said.

Fauci went on to dismiss quotes of his that had been used against him, arguing that “sound bites” lacked context.

“Well, as a matter of fact, that was true. But if you wanted to say, if we knew then that this virus under the radar screen was transmitting in a way that was not fully appreciated and any of us would have said, ‘Hey, you know, we’ve had five cases in the country. We need to shut down.’ People would have looked at us like we were crazy,” he contended.

“You have to be very careful and think about what your words are for the very same reason…It is really unfortunate, that that’s the world in which we live, in that it’s a bunch of sound bites, sound bites that sometimes get cut in half and get misinterpreted,” he continued.

Sounding all too much like White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre who challenged Fox News correspondent Peter Doocy on whether President Joe Biden was responsible for rising gas prices by arguing, “It’s a lot more nuanced than that,” Fauci embraced the progressive wordplay and argued people listening to the whole conversation listen “to all of the nuances” but “Someone could always make mischief by clipping out a few words.”

As further proof that Fauci was not seeking to correct past mistakes, assuming of course that any of his actions were mistakes, while he harped on his messaging dilemma it had been reported that Peter Daszak’s EcoHealth Alliance had once again been offered a grant of $3.3 million from the NIAID’s parent organization, the National Institutes of Health (NIH), to study bat viruses.

EcoHealth Alliance has been under scrutiny for a believed possible connection to the origin of the COVID pandemic as, after a 2014 NIAID grant, some funds were sent to the Wuhan Institute of Virology reportedly to conduct “gain of function” research.


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Kevin Haggerty


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