The title is too much to cover in one article, or perhaps one book. So, consider this an introduction.
Tuesday I took an early flight to San Juan, Puerto Rico for the most front-row seat possible as a group of doctors came together to draw a line in the sand. Wednesday, September 8, 2021 will go down in history as the day the San Juan Declaration was delivered.
I'm half-pictured in the back there as I was invited to make a few comments about the statistics for both early treatment medicine, and the current experimental vaccines. But it was the eight doctors---who represent many more---who were the focus of the event. It would be almost inappropriate to describe them as other than a cast of superheroes. I'll mix the metaphors or universes or whatever as I try to explain just a piece of what just went down.
The Medical Avengers Justice League University
Dr. Robert Malone really is the Professor Xavier of this moment. From the late 80s to the early 90s, Dr. Malone pioneered the techniques of genetic vaccination, but that hardly explains his breadth of medical knowledge, including his understanding of all the institutions and politics. His brilliance is matched by his calm, and if that's not enough, I'm pretty sure his wife (a policy specialist herself) watches over everything with her own complementary set of superpowers. Dr. Malone doesn't always get publicly involved in pandemic policy, but when he does, it's because the authorities are drunk at the wheel.
Dr. Richard Urso helped assemble the amazing group, which underscores the respect he has among top physicians. An ophthalmologist by practice, it is clear listening to him talk with the other doctors that he works with a sharp bird's eye view of medicine. He has invented a wound healing drug, and participated in other drug development. If, like me, you imagine that practicing medicine and managing the business and political sides as something like an ultra-marathon, Dr. Urso stands out as the guy who barely breaks a sweat doing all that. He is the Batman of this particular team.
Dr. Pierre Kory is one of the founders of the FLCCC. Listening to him exchange nitty-gritty details of patient treatment with Dr. Urso and others brought me to this conclusion: if you are held captive in the wrong hospital, he is the guy you hope knocks down a wall with his hammer to get to you. Dr. Kory quickly became a legend among physcians by being that guy who constantly kept testing what worked in order to do it better, and then take the lead, whether in published research or standing in front of Congress demanding that the results be observed.
Dr. Ryan Cole is a Mayo Clinic-trained pathologist whose primary superpower may be clarity of thought. Over breakfast Wednesday morning, I realized that I could probably pass any medical school exam that did not involve hands-on practice if I just kept him talking and teaching. He does theory and practice both well. When he isn't running his lab, he finds ways to more economically use local lumber with big saws on his land, next to the nine acres of organic farm. After meeting Dr. Cole I was forced to revise my list of six people I want around me during the zombie apocalypse (yes, that's a CDC page). His unwaveringly kind and mild manner makes me fairly certain he's smuggling an outrageous green hulk just beneath his skin.
Dr. Brian Tyson engineered what is likely the world's best (largest numbers) perfect record treating COVID-19 patients. Running urgent care clinics near California's southern border, he made the decision early to organize his crew to treat patients immediately---no waiting for positive tests when patients are walking in with interstitial lung damage and a list of COVID symptoms. The population of Imperial County where Dr. Tyson operates his clinics is largely of Mexican descent, and includes some with low trust in the U.S. medical system, yet word of mouth spread about his insistence on treating patients by "throwing the kitchen sink" at the virus, so his staff has treated an increasingly large proportion of the entire county's COVID-19 patients. The Captain America of the physician's group is currently in Rome, Italy to speak about what now stands as over 5,500 patients treated early with zero deaths.
Dr. Heather Gessling is the highest rated family doctor in Columbia, Missouri, according to ratemds.com. She exudes competence and focus, and like Dr. Tyson, successfully treated a large number (around 1600, IIRC) of COVID-19 patients. As I understand it, she lost one single patient who did not follow treatment instructions. Then she got fired, which is one more demonstration of how insane health policy has become during the pandemic. When it came down to discussions of the common practice of medicine, the other heroic doctors consistently turned to her for opinions or confirmation of what works. Is there any better compliment than the trust of your most excellent peers? She sculpted the final draft of the San Juan Declaration as much as anyone in the room.
Dr. Mark McDonald is a clinical psychiatrist and medical-legal expert, and when it comes to understanding the psychological impacts of absurd pandemic policy, he gets it. His superpower is that he grants those around him the ability to resist anxiety and brainwashing---even in the face of mass psychosis.
Dr. John Littell is a Family Physician operating out of Florida. He and his wife were the first new faces I met when I joined the group at the Hotel el Convento where most of us stayed, and they share a sincere positive radiance that I might simply summarize as health. What I mean by that is this: you know those people you meet and think, "I bet they'll be walking great-great-grand-children to school when they're 110 years old, smiling there and back"? That's the Littells. Their superpower is that they're incorruptible.
Other physicians were unable to make the quickly organized trip, but would have been happy to stand together with these remarkable doctors.
I am grateful to have had the opportunity to tag along and learn---about medicine, media, and deeper still into the politics. The trip, including a couple of long walks around Old San Juan, was a combination of inspiration and a much needed break from research, analysis, and writing.
The New New Media
There is a lot of new media over the past few years as the old media circles the drain. What do you even call a business plan of pushing views of government and corporate power holders 24 hours a day, 7 days a week? A sea of podcasters and bloggers have stepped in to fill the void, and yet it's still just too easy for some people to turn on one channel, or go straight to their favorite front page news website. The population that self-curates and the population that takes the easy route are diverging in a way that adds one more destabilizing force to a world starting to spin out of control.
The two unnamed men in Dr. Urso's photo are media journeymen with a plan to shatter the one-sided narrative that has become essentially universal among the major newspapers and networks. But I'll wait to say more because they are about to launch a new, different kind of media company. Their willingness to present the San Juan Declaration is something like their own declaration that large-scale media can still distribute viewpoints stated in opposition to controlling powers.
I nearly did not make the trip after hearing their pitch twice, and receiving an invitation to San Juan. Their concept drew me in because their structure gives up control to the experts of all partisan leanings or ideological stripes (or none) to self-organize their own content production, and in discussions with one another. Executed the right way, the structure resists capture, to a degree (Web 3.0 may one day add an additional degree of autonomy). As part of the launch, the media group recorded several hours of commentary by the physicians gathered, the latter part of which took place in front of an audience.
It is likely at this point that I move over to the new platform being built. I might even move to San Juan. I've been promised a tutorial of the platform technology soon, and I'm working on a financial game plan to put together the team I'd like to employ in the process. Whether or not I make the move, it will not be because I've found Substack lacking. Substack is a tremendous platform whose team has done all the right things during a difficult time, and I suspect they'll continue to grow. They've defended free speech and kept the door open for real journalism. But we live in interesting times, and risks need to be taken to find the best results. Call it "empiric journalism".
The San Juan Declaration
It's not for me to share the statement, yet---not that I even have a copy to distribute at this moment. But it's coming, and it cannot come soon enough. Last year it appeared fully understandable that we overreacted to the pandemic early on, and many are still enraptured by the daily dose of fear porn and unnecessary divisiveness injected into the atmosphere daily. But what might have been a small hiccup in public health history has turned into something horrific that now stands to threaten more lives than perhaps all epidemics in human history. Something must be done.
To Be Continued...Soon