Corona: When will we ever understand?
By Ekkehard Basten, Manfred Lotze
[This article published in March 2021 is translated from the German on the Internet, Ossietzky | Corona: Wann wird man je verstehn?]
The Corona measures of those currently in power are intended to prevent great calamity. They are used to justify the most severe restrictions on constitutional rights, the likes of which have not been seen since the end of World War II. Through intensive cuts in education and training, disruptions of social cohesion, economic interventions that endanger the existence of small entrepreneurs, the middle class, large companies, cultural life, democracy is being damaged and millions of people in poorer countries are being deprived of their livelihood. And all this, they say, to save people from death and disease.
But who is actually most threatened by "Corona"? Those at risk are overwhelmingly over 80 years old. Younger people are less at risk, and young people only very rarely. Of those infected under the age of 70, a maximum of five per 10,000 die, i.e. 0.05 percent. To speak of an epidemic or pandemic here is not serious.
And even in the case of a truly fatal pandemic, constitutional fundamental rights would still have to be taken into account, again to protect the population. After all, they are the expression of historical, terrible experiences with authoritarian forms of rule.
So shouldn't the damage caused by the virus be much greater than the negative consequences of the containment measures? They would have to be so great in real terms that the massive interventions would be accepted as necessary protection. For whose protection? To protect the very old people (mostly with pre-existing conditions) who are almost exclusively affected by Corona.
It can be read in the ZEIT, confirmed by the Barmer EK and the German Association of Intensive Care Physicians, that at least 20 to 30 percent of the "Corona intensive care patients" so far are not treated at all because of Corona, but for other medical reasons. The Institute of Forensic Medicine at the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf (UKE) recently confirmed that 99 percent of the "Covid deaths" studied suffered from pre-existing conditions - and did not die "from" but at best "with" Corona, and were on average 83 years old. Anyone who "counts" so inaccurately quickly falls into the trap of alarmism.
This leads us to the question of what those currently in power were thinking when they took their measures and especially with regard to the effects on the people affected. Are they acting as haphazardly, chaotically and disproportionately for a growing number of those suffering under the measures as it often seems? Or is the executive branch, which presents itself as a chancellor's round of corona summits without alternatives, bypassing the legislative branch (Paech, Prantl), following the overarching plans of an anti-pandemic strategy developed by the Gates Foundation, the World Economic Forum and the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security as long as 20 years ago (Event 201)?
The decisions of the pandemic regime also include a considerable restriction of all demonstrations of the peace movement, the Ramstein action, the Rosa Luxemburg demonstration in January and many others. All demonstrations disagreeable to the authorities were and are disciplined solely by monitoring mask and distance. There is hardly any room left for active democracy.
Since there is not enough space here to back up every issue raised with sources and citations, we will limit ourselves to a few comments.
The countries with the greatest corona damage are those in which social cuts, with no health care for all, have been most radical. Fifty years ago, historian and philosopher Ivan Illich could claim that the medical system is the greatest threat to human health. IPPNW co-founder Bernard Lown, who recently died at 99, pointed out the same basic evil: "A profit-oriented health care system is an oxymoron, a contradiction in terms. The moment care serves profit, it has lost true care." The medical system is profit-driven. The strengthening of personal immune systems and an expansion of adequate social systems (UN human rights) is detrimental to economic interests. Only diseases are profitable. Analogously, the maximum profit is achieved with wars. The declared "war against the virus" shows the militarized thinking.
Comparisons with countries that live better than us without lockdown policies are not discussed independently. Those who want to know also know the winners of the Corona policy. The gap between rich and poor has been alarmingly deepened in the context of the "viral" amplification of the economic and financial market crisis that has not been overcome since 2008. Cui bono?
Almost 300 child and youth therapists warn of the psychological lockdown consequences. They are critical of political decisions. Schools and daycare centers should be opened, they demanded on Feb. 7 in an open letter titled: "The mental health of children and adolescents must be protected!" The child psychiatrist Hans-Joachim Maaz warned on 15.8.20 in Halle urgently of the consequences of stoked fear, not only for health. It destroys relationships, makes ill and is a gateway for totalitarianism. Rainer Mausfeld has analyzed this connection historically and currently in "Fear and Power".
Anyone who wants to enter into a peaceful dialogue about the benefits and harms of measures with a masked man who follows all the AHA-L orders cannot rely on arguments and factual information alone. It is more important to create a basis of trust where each respects the interests and fears of the other. Hannah Arendt's sentence, "No man has the right to obey," would be out of place here, although we believe it to be valid.
Critical questions can also be asked of the vaccination campaign. All vaccines to date have received emergency approvals at best. So the new Covid 19 vaccines are still experimental. We are, in effect, participants (subjects) in an ongoing trial. From our (physicians') point of view, a truly informed consent for vaccination is not yet possible at all. Data on long-term consequences are logically missing. Speculation abounds. Since "sterile immunity" is not achievable, even vaccinated individuals can still pass on the infection.
In summary, we therefore demand:
Immediate repeal of the "epidemic situation of national importance" and the accompanying authorization of the Minister of Health under the 3rd Infection Protection Act IfSG, so that Parliament can once again perform its constitutional duties.
Protective measures continue to be recommended, and compliance is based on voluntary action.
The greatest possible consideration remains necessary because of the consequences of the fear pandemic, which are likely to last for a long time.
Health care systems must serve the common good alone. Remunicipalization of all health care facilities, abolition of the DRG system, adequate payment of medical staff, improved training and working conditions. Stop of one-sided technical, materialistic orientations, promotion of prevention (immune system strengthening) and education about ecological connections.
Public parliamentary Corona investigation committee.
Investigative journalism. The past year has also been a lockdown for free speech publishing.
The authors, Manfred Lotze and Ekkehard Basten, are physicians who, as members of IPPNW - Physicians in Social Responsibility e. V., represent their personal opinions here.