As COVID surges, why is YouTube suppressing SkyNews for its reports on HCQ and ivermectin?
In one of the most outrageous instances of internet censorship, YouTube has suppressed Australian news giant SkyNews for a week, based on its reports about hydroxychloroquine and ivermectin.
The London Telegraph has the first report here:
Sky News Australia has been banned for a week from uploading videos to Youtube after it was accused of spreading misinformation about the coronavirus pandemic.
The Sky News Australia channel on YouTube received a "strike" over "numerous" video clips, including "content that denies the existence of Covid-19," the video platform said.
It means that the broadcaster is blocked from publishing videos on YouTube for seven days, and will be permanently banned from the platform if it receives a second and third strike in future.
SkyNews has explicitly denied that it ever claimed that COVID does not exist, according to this Washington Post report just out. Here's what it probably was really about:
These include featuring some right-wing personalities that discourage viewers from taking the coronavirus threat seriously.
The rest of the beef comes to this, emphasis mine:
Australian media reported that the one-week suspension came after a review of Sky News Australia content that denied the existence of Covid-19 or encouraged people to use hydroxychloroquine or ivermectin to treat the coronavirus. A YouTube spokesman told the Guardian that the video clips on hydroxychloroquine and ivermectin would have been allowed if "sufficient countervailing context" had been provided by the uploader.
They added that "we don’t allow content that denies the existence of Covid-19."
This is an amazingly heavy hand of censorship of bona fide news, given that YouTube is a near-monopoly.
And it's wrong on at least two levels. One, even if the network were wrong (a big "if"), the censorship would be wrong, too. In a free society, news agencies sink or swim based on the accuracy of their information. To shut them down on a false claim of denying COVID, or for reporting on the benefits of hydroxychloroquine and ivermectin, serves zero useful purpose. In a country with a free press, if SkyNews is wrong about those treatments, its credibility will vanish, and its audience will evaporate. Viewers are not stupid. But YouTube seems to think they are.
Meanwhile, YouTube's disgusting bottom note that it will permit some reporting on ivermectin and HCQ provided the news reports include skeptical notes from officials is even more appalling. Who the heck are they to tell reporters how to structure what is important to include in a story? Is that a free press?
They seem to think they've got a monopoly on truth when in reality they have a monopoly on power.
Two, now COVID is catching fire again, apparently in some places — NBC News sensationally reports 35 million cases in the U.S. — so honest reporting about treatments is more than a little newsworthy. To repress news of any treatments in a pandemic is not only anti-news, it's utterly scary.
Because the hard fact here is that news shifts. The mainstream media first downplayed the COVID virus last year as anti-Chinese racism, then overplayed it, complete with utterly false information denying the origins of the virus, likely from a Chicom lab. It has backtracked and pushed forward on other aspects, such as the wearing of masks and the shutdown of schools, seemingly with zero regard for facts, the only common thread visible in it is the urge to Get Trump and support corporate Big Pharma profits.
Censorship has already been pretty bad out there, with doctors on the ground reporting successful HCQ and ivermectin treatments outside the conventional wisdom; we've seen them get abused and shut down.
At this point, what we know now is that the skeptics and outliers have frequently been proven right. Yet right as they may be, the censoring just keeps going on — a bad thing, given that these are life-saving treatments, the current treatments in place aren't impressive, and all of the attention has been on the vaccine.
It's important now because what we know so far is that vaccines don't seem to be working all that well (see AT contributor Brian C. Joondeph, M.D.'s excellent op-ed here), so people are catching it. While deaths don't seem to be all that high, as most cases are mild, in line with the historic pattern of pandemic viral variants to be weaker, the virus is still highly contagious, and some people are in danger.
With vaccines no panacea, it makes sense to look hard at effective treatments for those who get sick.
In Australia, home of SkyNews, as well as its neighbors in the region — Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, India — the effective treatment is widely recognized to be hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) and ivermectin. Just google the names of any of those countries with either of those medicines, and there's your proof. All of these countries have significant experience with battling tropical infectious diseases, so even without the FDA's say-so, it's a given that they've got an opinion about what's safe, what's worth trying, and what's likely to work. HCQ is historically an anti-malarial drug that's cheap and abundant, while ivermectin is known to battle parasites and is also cheap and easy to acquire. These drugs, incidentally, have been hailed in the region as responsible for halting India's disastrous COVID outbreak earlier this year.
According to MedPage Today, which reported that result skeptically:
The Front Line COVID-19 Critical Care Alliance, which has long championed the drug, paid little attention to the difference between causation and correlation in a recent tweet on the issue: "Case counts and deaths are falling in India! A close look ... shows that the declines occurred as the Health Ministry [sic] began its widespread distribution of #ivermectin."
(Apparently, we're supposed to think it all just died off on its own).
These countries in the SkyNews orbit have also produced more than anecdotal evidence that these treatments work — they also have hard studies.
Here's one from Singapore finding that HCQ is effective in treating COVID (added note: Singapore has internationally respected medical research and the region's best medical care).
Here's a devastating case made from leading medical researchers in the states noting study after study on ivermectin's effectiveness, from the Wall Street Journal's op-ed page, which ran this on July 28 under the headline: "Why is the FDA attacking a safe, effective drug?"
Ivermectin was developed and marketed by Merck & Co. while one of us (Mr. Hooper) worked there years ago. William C. Campbell and Satoshi Omura won the 2015 Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine for discovering and developing avermectin, which Mr. Campbell and associates modified to create ivermectin.
Ivermectin is on the World Health Organization’s List of Essential Medicines. Merck has donated four billion doses to prevent river blindness and other diseases in Africa and other places where parasites are common. A group of 10 doctors who call themselves the Front Line Covid-19 Critical Care Alliance have said ivermectin is “one of the safest, low-cost, and widely available drugs in the history of medicine.”
Ivermectin fights 21 viruses, including SARS-CoV-2, the cause of Covid-19. A single dose reduced the viral load of SARS-CoV-2 in cells by 99.8% in 24 hours and 99.98% in 48 hours, according to a June 2020 study published in the journal Antiviral Research.
Some 70 clinical trials are evaluating the use of ivermectin for treating Covid-19. The statistically significant evidence suggests that it is safe and works for both treating and preventing the disease.
The rest of the piece is brutal to skeptics of ivermectin with hard facts and cases, which pretty well make the case that news of this treatment should get out.
Yet this is the news that YouTube is suppressing in its sickola censorship of SkyNews.
How many people are going to catch COVID and die from it because they don't even know about ivermectin or HCQ, both of which show significant evidence of working, all because of YouTube's censorship?
Why is this news of an actual cure being repressed? And show us someone who got sick from the treatment in a controlled prescriptive environment? I have yet to see any; I just see self-interested bureaucrats screaming danger in an exaggerated way, while unsung heroes, such as the doctor in Texas who saved a whole nursing home full of elderly COVID patients based on HCQ use with no bad side-effects, go ignored, demonized, or suppressed.
This is about as strong an argument as can be made for revoking social media's Section 230 protections, which allow them to claim the title of a neutral platform with no liability worries yet act as an East German censor, suppressing news in the name of its own political agenda. If they can't lay off the censorship, then it's time for Congress to take legal action. Lives are at stake now in Season II of COVID, and these censors should be held responsible, should anyone die of COVID, not knowing of the treatments they might have had. Twenty twenty-two can't come soon enough, for this alone.
Image: Pixabay, Pixabay license.
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