No alternative facts
Sherri Tenpenny: The COVID-19 vaccines make people "magnetized. They can put a key on their forehead, it sticks. They can put spoons and forks all over them, and they can stick."
Dr Tenpenny is an osteopathic doctor. "Osteopathic medicine is based on the idea that all the body's systems are interrelated. Osteopaths focus on treating the whole person. " "One key idea in this field is that many diseases result from, or cause, problems within the body's musculoskeletal system, which includes nerves, muscles, and bones."
Dr Tenpenny also thinks that vaccines link people up to G5 cellular networks. Who knows how or why but that's what she claims to think.
Senator Ron Johnson had his Youtube account suspended for spreading anti-vaxxer misinformation.
He was not pleased and said:
"They have decided there is only one medical viewpoint allowed and it is the viewpoint dictated by government agencies,"
Johnson said in a statement to CNN. "YouTube's ongoing Covid censorship proves they have accumulated too much unaccountable power. Big Tech and mainstream media believe they are smarter than medical doctors who have devoted their lives to science and use their skills to save lives."
There is a response to nonsense like this; Consilience.
That's EO Wilson's idea that all scientific knowledge forms a unified body:
that is, though physics and biology are very different studies but nothing in biology contradicts what is know from physics and visa versa.
Basically it's not reasonable to claim 'alternate facts'.
Now Johnson is a politician. He makes his living telling people what they want to hear and there a lot of people who don't want to hear about science. And it's easy to be so disconnected from reality if you don't actually know much about it. And it's easier when you live in an information bubble where everyone agrees with you.
But Dr Tenpenny? What's her excuse?
She spent years in medical school and surely has to be well informed about science. I'm pretty sure she knows that vaccinations cannot possibly magnetize people. The idea is completely absurd.
It is not consilient. It doesn't fit with science at all. It just spouts scientific words like magnetism. But it ignores what magnetism is in reality. It talks about magnetism as if it's some mysterious force. Magnetism is in fact quite well understood by science - it's not a mystery. Dr Tenpenny has to know that. Before she went to medical school she took lots of science courses as an undergraduate. She had to understand and pass those courses to get into medical school. So I think she is knowingly lying when she talks about vaccines magnetizing people.
Dr Tenpenny is known as one of 12 superspreaders of anti-vaxx misinformation on the internet. Something like 65% of the anti-vaxx misinformation comes from those 12. And they have a big audience. What's going on?
One way of thinking of this is in terms of our cultural polarization.
A lot of people still live in the sort of imaginary white world of the 1950s. Everyone went to church. Everyone dressed in a suit and tie to go to work. Fedoras were normal and housewives did their housework wearing high heels and makeup. That kind of never existed for most people and got confronted by cultural change. Everything from hippies to women's liberation was an affront to them. It wasn't normal.
Well - what's normal turned out not to be eternal and given by God.
Now, for most people what's normal has changed a lot. But a lot of people never did get that change. They think of the change as evil.
Here's the kicker - that cultural change is very compatible with consilience -
science backed up gay people who said that they were a part of the normal variation in people.
This was anathema to lots of people.
I think Dr Tenpenny is consciously playing up to those people.
I don't know if she personally is making money off her lies.
But I think she is part of a movement that is trying to destroy the influence of rational thought in society.
We see that kind of thing among trumpists a lot - that's what I think the constant stream of lies is about.
It's trying to destroy the possibility of rational dialogue and is going for 'might is right'.
And really - that's a disaster.
what do you think?