With social media companies like Twitter and Facebook/Meta deplatforming those spreading misinformation, COVID-19 quacks, antivaxxers, and conspiracy theorists are flocking to Substack, where they can monetize their misinformation while Substack profits.
Misuse of the VAERS database to spread fear, uncertainty, and doubt about vaccines has been a favorite technique of antivaxxers for decades. Unfortunately, 2021 was the year when this particular antivax trope was turbocharged, and public health messaging seemed powerless to counter it.
Joe Mercola: An antivaccine quack tycoon pivots effortlessly to profit from spreading COVID-19 misinformation
Joe Mercola is a physician whose nearly quarter-century of promoting quackery and antivaccine misinformation has garnered him a net worth north of $100 million. It is therefore not surprising that in the age of the pandemic, he has pivoted to fatten his bottom line promoting misinformation and conspiracy theories about COVID-19 and the COVID vaccines.
Last month, I discussed why ivermectin is the new hydroxychloroquine:, basically a “miracle cure” that isn’t. Since then, conspiracy theories about its being "suppressed" have continued to bump heads with the science showing that, at the very best, evidence for its efficacy is very weak and, at the worst, the drug is useless.
COVID-19 and antivaccine conspiracy theorists like Joe Mercola, Michael Yeadon, and Peter McCullough are spreading the conspiracy theory that COVID-19 vaccines are intended as a tool for "global depopulation". This is nothing more than an old antivaccine conspiracy theory repurposed for the pandemic. As ridiculous as it might seem, it is nonetheless very appealing to antivaxxers.
Antivaccine alternative health tycoon Joe Mercola claims that the unblinding of participants in the clinical trials of Moderna and Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines was intended to "blow up the trials" and undermine the science, making it impossible ever to identify long term adverse events. What he's really doing is deceptively oversimplifying complex ethical and scientific issues surrounding these trials in the middle of...
Antivaxxers and COVID-19 conspiracy theorists were always going to spin conspiracies about COVID-19 vaccines. Unfortunately, some scientists have made it so much easier for them by having likened mRNA vaccines to "hacking the software of life" and being unclear on what gene therapy is.
Dr. David Brownstein is a "holistic" physician who practices in Dr. Gorski's neck of the woods. Unfortunately, he just wrote a book promoting an unproven protocol involving vitamins, nebulized hydrogen peroxide and iodine, and intravenous ozone to treat COVID-19. There is no evidence that his protocol works, other than a very poor quality case series.
When it comes to antivaccine misinformation and the COVID-19 pandemic, everything old is new again, at least if you haven't been paying attention. This time around, it's the resurrection of an old favorite antivaccine trope, the "toxins" gambit. Truly, lipid nanoparticles are the new mercury.