Healthcare Expert Greg Travis Speaks About the Official Disappearing of COVID-19 Pandemic

Yves here. As much as I strongly prefer video presentations with transcripts, this long talk on Covid with Greg Travis, organized by WSWS, is very much worth your time (and you can listen at 1.25x time). Readers may remember Greg Travis from the Boeing 737 Max debacle. Travis, a software developer/technologist with a strong interest in public policy, was an early and accurate critic of the Max, and his posts included helpful explainers about things like how AOA sensors work.

A major theme is how what passes for our public health care system has been “disappearing” Covid via persistent undercounts, made worse recently by changing definitions and out and out cessation or reduction of key types of data gathering and reporting. Scientist GM, who has been e-mailing frequently about data reductions and sleights of hand, said “Some of the subtleties I had missed myself and wasn’t aware of.”

This discussion focuses on how the officialdom has engaged in persistent misleading messaging about Covid, initially by misrepresenting its severity, selling the bogus notions of “natural” and “herd” immunity and of Covid becoming weaker over time. As Travis says at 32:55:

Diseases do not become milder with age. They do not become milder as they become less novel. Basically, flu has had the same severity for hundreds of years. It did not become milder. Polio, my favorite example, was endemic in the United States from 1890 to 1960, seventy years it was endemic. It never became milder.

To entice you to watch, here are some key slides:

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  1. Basil Pesto

    WSWS also recently put out a video with David Berger, a rural Australian GP and prominent anti-Covid activist (the fact that such a category of people even has to exist at this point is a testament to our monumental civilisational idiocy). Haven’t watched yet but I’m sure it’s worthy.

  2. Ignacio

    No, SARS CoV 2 does not become ‘weaker’. The now dominant variants are more pathogenic (increased quantitative ability to cause disease) but less virulent (generally decreased qualitative severity of disease, even if the range goes from asymptomatic to death very much like former variants but with qualitative differences). As we see such combination results in quite a lot of havoc.

    The problem is that you cannot deem Omicron as ‘mild’: it can be mild but it can also be severe enough to kill.

  3. Paul Whittaker

    the stand out for me is the trashing of early treatment, (just stay home and see how bad it gets?) the lies and bullshit from government mouthpieces and their media accomplices has proven false as the story unfolded.

    1. Arizona Slim

      Same here. I am still on this planet because of early treatment. Permit me to explain.

      During the winter of 1968-69, I caught a nasty case of what my father called “le grippe.” ISTR that he was being polite and not saying that I had the flu.

      If you’re a student of pandemics, you’ll know that 1968-69 was when the Hong Kong Flu pandemic occurred. Most likely, that is what ailed little Slim.

      Well, my mother took me to the doctor straightaway, I was treated with, oh, I don’t remember, but here I am, more than 50 years later.

      1. Tater

        That’s nothing, Slim. One day in 1958-59 I didn’t feel well. History buffs will remember the atomic bomb tests and radiation fallout experiments in the upwind desert just to the west of us here in Oklahoma. I’m not sure if’n that’s what ailed little Tater, but Mom straight away told me to take a walk around the block. And here I am sixty five years later.

  4. PF

    “Most people, particularly in the United States, have no first-hand experience with disease of any kind.”
    “Most people under 50 don’t die and don’t get sick.”
    “Most people don’t get the flu.”
    “Diseases do not become milder with age.”
    This is a “Health Expert”? Mr. Travis seems to be a self-taught software engineer with a B.A. in History…
    OK, let’s ignore credentials, and only look at facts.

    Most people definitely have first-hand experience with disease – of many kinds. Most people definitely get sick. And most people do get the flu. The CDC finds that 5-20% get infected each year… Therefore at any one time, the majority of the population has had it. Even Mr. Travis had it. Twice.

    And finally, “Diseases do not become milder with age?” They evolve with age. Some absolutely become milder, some go extinct (SARS-CoV-1), and some like the flu (or rather the flu family of diseases) occur for many centuries and have peaks and valleys. Newly created viruses introduced to humans definitely evolve to optimize their evolutionary advantages. And the higher transmissibility and milder features of Covid Omnicron is part of this evolution. So, yes, it became milder with age.

    1. Yves Smith Post author

      If you had listened, Travis defines getting the flu as getting a bad enough case so as to be unable to get out of bed. By that standard, I have had the flu only once.

      As for Omicron, it is not mild and BA.2 leads to more severe outcomes.

      SARS-COV-1 was eliminated. It did not evolve at all.

      1. Mikel

        “SARS-COV-1 was eliminated. It did not evolve at all.”

        With the environment at play in the evolution of a virus, I can only imagine what’s different now…

    2. Basil Pesto

      Wrong. Omicron is “milder” purely by chance. There is no guarantee that all future variants will be less virulent. Indeed until Omicron, VoCs were progressively more virulent, and BA.2 appears to he moreso than vanilla Omicron.

      some go extinct (SARS-CoV-1)

      lmao are you suggesting that SARS1 spontaneously gave up the ghost and buggered off?

      1. Ignacio

        SARS 1, from the very beginning was not nearly as pathogenic as SARS CoV 2 (not to mention current variants). It didn’t have the chance to evolve into something more pathogenic. And yes, the evolution of virulence is very much unpredictable and could go either way. High virulence has an epidemiological trade-off on behaviour and if highly virulent variants come i bet for a return to lockdowns (even voluntary), no matter how fed up with this is the PMC. This is something that propaganda efforts wouldn’t be able to fight.

        1. Basil Pesto

          But SARS1 didn’t just spontaneously go extinct; it was successfully contained with considerable human effort. I grant that this was technically easier to do given that asymptomatic spread wasn’t a factor.

  5. antidlc

    New White House COVID czar says it’s not a moment to be ‘excessively concerned’

    The new White House COVID-19 response coordinator, Dr. Ashish K. Jha, said Monday that while there had been a recent uptick in new U.S. coronavirus cases, he was not overly concerned.

    “We’ve got to watch this very carefully — obviously, I never like to see infections rising — I think we’ve got to be careful,” Jha said on the “Today” show. “But I don’t think this is a moment where we have to be excessively concerned.”

    “Right now that is showing an uptick, but not showing substantial changes in what we should be doing,” Jha said on CNN, referring to the CDC framework. “And I think the CDC policy is right on this.”

    Nothing will fundamentally change.

  6. Mikel

    This article gets to a contributing factor of why so many in the medical establishment go along with the political and economic propaganda. I have to wonder how many go along to get along because of crushing student debt?
    Years and years of scientific research on various illnesses/drugs is now too often dismissed in favor of pharma talking points (backed by zero to miniscule and manipulated research) to sell more drugs.

    1. playon

      Exacerbated by the corruption of the American FDA and CDC & their sellout to big pharma…

  7. Left in Wisconsin

    It seems pretty clear that we have never had, and still don’t, any idea of actual case counts. Look at the data from Shanghai (via Reuters):

    Shanghai reported 25,141 new asymptomatic coronavirus cases for Tuesday, up from 22,348 a day earlier, and symptomatic cases also jumped to 1,189 from 994, city authorities said.

    When extensive population testing is done, asymptomatic cases outnumber symptomatic by 20 to 1.

    1. chris

      That’s a very good point. I agree that we probably have no idea how prevalent SARS2 is in our population on the best day of our best testing. Data collection for public purposes in the US sucks… no wonder why :/

  8. SteveD

    This is a brutal watch. I had to do it over 5 sessions to keep my blood pressure down. Not that I didn’t know some of this, and suspect some of the rest…but to watch it all laid out in one sitting…just brutal.

    1. GM

      If people knew and understood what is being done to them, the system would collapse in a day — those in power would be hanging from trees and lampposts within hours.

      So it is vital that people do not understand what is being done to them.

      And the propaganda has been remarkably successful in accomplishing that task.

      1. LawnDart

        Perhaps lessons were learned from Jonestown? Because, so far, they seem to have been well-implemented.

      2. Joe Well

        What amazes me is that this is also being done, to a lesser extent, to the elites, at least if they ever want to go to a nightclub, concert, or Eyes Wide Shut-type private event (/s).

        Many of these people will pay Gwenyth Paltrow $10,000 for a bag of magic chia seeds to slow the aging process. Why aren’t they up in arms just for their own sakes?

        1. JBird4049

          $10,000 bags of magic chia seeds from Gwenyth Paltrow??? Say what!?

          It sure says much about our world that I am not sure that this satire or just Tuesday.

  9. Rolf

    My thanks to Yves for posting this. The full interview, although lengthy, is well worth the listen, and I urge NC readers to do so. Travis describes the degree to which COVID data are no longer being released, tracked, published etc., how “getting back to normal” is relentlessly pushed by those who are fundamentally invested, quite literally, in the resulting dysfunction, but united in their mediocrity and overwhelming short citedness. Although many readers will be familiar with the phenomenon of under-counting of deaths, Travis also documents the degree to which deaths in children are being dismissed. Per Travis,

    COVID is the deadliest disease of all diseases in children. COVID has killed in two years somewhere between 1000 — at an absolute minimum — and probably much closer to 5000; 5000 when we look at the excess deaths.

    To me, this last observation was absolutely stunning. And with the wholesale return to in-person instruction in schools, this number will continue to climb. This will ultimately bring COVID — as a child killer in the US — into the same order of magnitude as vehicle crashes and firearm deaths.

    The failure of the current administration and its media agents to blow the whistle on this disaster, to instead relentlessly pat themselves on the back, to engage cheerleaders to peddle absurd happy talk, to distort or conceal the truth from ordinary citizens, is a national disgrace. And as people often quip, if COVID-19 was the quiz, climate change will be the final exam. Given how we have performed thus far, that test will truly be — final.

    1. JBird4049

      Yes. IIRC, death by gun is roughly forty fifty thousand with one-third is homicides and two-thirds are suicides combined for all ages. Car deaths are roughly the same total amount.

      So, rounding up to a total of one hundred thousand deaths and then doubling for the injured especially requiring hospitalization makes it three hundred thousand dead and injured each year. Combined. What are COVID’s numbers? If I understand today’s water cooler, just the combined deaths from the past two and a third year exceeds the current and predicted total casualties (deaths and injuries) from guns and cars for the same period plus the remainder of this year. By then, using the back of the envelope, total COVID deaths should be somewhere near of 1.3 million people.

      Restated, the combined totals of deaths and injuries from guns and cars for three years should be something like nine hundred thousand rounded up. The numbers do bounce around. The combined totals of just the deaths from COVID-19 is probably, almost certainly north of 1.3 million people. Or four hundred thousand greater than the combined total casualties of the other two causes.

      Or I could just compare the three hundred thousand fatalities of guns and cars to the one million three hundred thousand deaths of the disease. Hey, that is only a factor of four. I have been reluctant to think of all this as an example of mass democide. Maybe, I should not be.

  10. Noone from Nowheresville

    If only the Tzar knew… I think that applies to ordinary people as well. I mentioned to someone recently that it’s amazing that over 1 million people have died in the US of Covid, yet no riots or protests. Their basic response was to shrug and say no one was to blame, why would anyone protest? I hope Hudson’s wrong on his protest date.


    Okay, I haven’t finished the interview yet so I don’t know if this gets re-addressed. It nags at me. Starts around 40:08 auto-generated YouTube transcript timestamp. There are truths within the overcounting lie. Governments and corporations did impose restrictions from vaccine employment requirements to a digital vaccine passports to access to certain businesses. There was and is massive Scapegoating. As well as Shaming. Massive unemployment. Hoop jumping for assistance. Small businesses crumbled while the stock market soars. Different day, different noble lie. Active destruction of public health. etc., etc.

    So we can scoff and say no one declared a dictatorship. That even leaky Covid restrictions were a “good” thing.

    But I don’t think the comment would be received well. I think people would hear him say that they were ridiculous rather than the myth. I also don’t hear him acknowledging that there have been massive power grabs.

    The overcounting myth tells enough truths to cover multiple lies for a lot of people. Countering the myth can do the same thing in reverse.

    An oncologist at uh university of california san francisco vinnie prasad who came out and wrote that basically all of these coveted restrictions that we’re seeing are based on inflated cases and based on inflated deaths because uh governments use pandemics as a way to impose power and control for power and control’s sake and by the way that’s how nazi germany happened you know which which caused quite a bit of a ruckus. Since nobody can remember any pandemic that hitler used as an example as an excuse to seize power and and and at the same time if a pandemic was a great way to to seize power and establish a dictatorship why didn’t trump do it? You know yeah and and instead what we what we see and so so this myth that the government was was overstating covet cases and overstating coveted deaths as a way to maintain power is ridiculous on its face because all that we have seen again both federal administrations democratic and and uh and republican as well as basically every single state government in the in the nation whether it’s a democratic governor or republican governor has bent over backwards to find ways to undercount deaths and and and and cases yeah um and and there’s a systemic bias in in the united states.

    1. Basil Pesto

      Nevertheless, Team Incipient Vaccine Fascism is downright weird. The reality of the situation is way more insane than the most feverish vaccine conspiracy theory. The vaccine mandate was pointless but at some point it’s very difficult to reach people who think that every crisis is a Reichstag fire, especially when they’re being nudged along by cynical PMC jackals like Vinay Prasad. And as GM says, if people understood what was truly being done to them (hint: it’s not vaccine holocaust – I know this fully aware that vaccine adverse effects are very real), there would be blood in the streets.

      As I’ve long said, this is all Covid Remedy Identity Politics. Keep people arguing about vaccines which are individually helpful but socially disastrous as policy. Keep them arguing about masks, or Ivermectin, or that lockdowns are a fascist overreach invented by the CCCP (this last one is particularly disastrous, when there’s an outbreak of a new pathogen that will require intense TTIQ to bring under control, the well of the one and only known technique that can put a stop to them may well have been irredeemably poisoned in the west). And as with regular identity politics, it’s all divide and conquer nonsense designed to stop us from coming together and meaningfully addressing the root problem.

      And I note with interest as well that FLCCC has thrown in their lot with the nationwide reactionary truck parade against mandates (of all kinds, not just these vaccines, which I oppose)… mandates which are no longer an issue, which for the most part don’t exist. That is a discrediting embarrassment and delineates them as a worthless political body rather than a useful scientific one.

      1. Lambert Strether

        > And I note with interest as well that FLCCC has thrown in their lot with the nationwide reactionary truck parade against mandates (of all kinds, not just these vaccines, which I oppose)… mandates which are no longer an issue, which for the most part don’t exist. That is a discrediting embarrassment and delineates them as a worthless political body rather than a useful scientific one.

        That’s depressing.

        1. Basil Pesto

          and it highlights something that’s been clear for a while now: vaccine monomaniacals and ivermectin monomaniacals are two peas in a pod. They are functionally almost exactly the same. Just their pharmaceutical of choice is different, and the circles they roll in/are accepted by are different. But neither of them can see the forest for the trees. And here we are.

          1. Noone from Nowheresville

            Did you happen to catch that video done in collaboration with Taibbi’s substack, which interviewed people at various locations although the truckers’ rally* path?

            I know that they were only snippets of what the independent media team choose to show. But what struck me was how my memory of it had one side was able to discuss their positions in off-the-cuff plain language whereas the opposing side read their speeches off their cell phones using college level terminology / language. Again, I’m aware that these were purposefully chosen interview snippets and that my memory may be faulty.

            Still two very different in-groups using different levers to grow and keep their groups together. I know the media promoted this as an anti-vaccine mandate public flag event but I think that explanation is too simplistic and denies agency to those involved. The whole media event seemed manufactured to me, even if real people with real issues (on both sides) took part.

            I got nothing else. Just something in your comment which promoted the tangent string my mind is pulling on right now.

            *sorry, parade doesn’t seem an appropriate word to use.

      2. Noone from Nowheresville

        I brought this up because the person listening with me freaked out. They had no idea who Vinay Prasad was. They don’t subscribe to fascism / Nazi memes generally tossed around by both sides. Aren’t on Twitter or Facebook. But they do watch videos on YouTube and NBC at the national, state and local levels so there is both trust and distrust of the status quo.

        There are so many layers to the PR being deployed to divide and conquer. Intellectually I think the NC community is more intellectually aware of it, but even we let things get by our internal filters without giving it careful consideration.

        I knew what Travis was trying to convey so I gave it a pass even if I did have a few niggles up to that point. Why? Because he had important information to convey. I’ll even admit that I probably would’ve erased the niggles from my memory of his talk had the person listening with me not called me on my own hypocrisy. I’m quite critical of political thought influencers found on YouTube and elsewhere, who I feel use telling certain truths to cover bigger lies. So I was guilty as charged.

        What the incident revealed to me was that my internal filters weren’t set to a fine enough level. Especially if I wanted to pass the information onto others not already in the NC community with the hopes of getting them to question pieces of the narratives their public / private masks had become invested in.


        As a test run for future policy deployment, were the vaccine / restriction mandates pointless? I don’t think any policies which were deployed since 2020 were pointless. Think of all the data gathered from the various test environments in the US alone. Then throw in data from Canada, France, UK, Germany, etc., etc., etc. Beyond the pandemic itself, we are awash in full scale PR deployment. And I think we can be sure that someone somewhere is using and parsing any information gathered for potential future policy deployment.

        That is a discrediting embarrassment and delineates them as a worthless political body rather than a useful scientific one.

        Worthless to whom?

        Trickle down economics was worthless for the majority but it’s still being deployed today decades later. Many worthless ideas and organizations are like zombies who simply refuse to stay dead and buried because it benefits someone with enough money or capital to keep it alive.

        So, yep, the well, especially as it pertains to public health, is poisoned from above, below and corkscrewed from the side. I fear that the only way to go back towards actual public health will be if those with the power to make or influence policy decisions are threatened by the virus. I also fear that any implementation would need to stay under the radar on a location by location basis.

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