Newsmax continues to allow its columnists to peddle misinformation about COVID and its vaccines, then tries to weasel out of taking responsibility for the misinformation with a disclaimer noting that a "non-clinician" wrote the column. Nicholas Chamberas and Conrad Black have done so recently, but they're not the only ones.
Dick Morris insisted in a Jan. 11 column that because the Omicron variant "is very unlikely to kill people, especially children," that means "an unvaccinated person poses little risk to others but significant risk to himself" and, thus, "it is neither anti-social nor irresponsible not to get a shot. It is simply an individual’s right to decide." In fact, five times as many children were hospitalized with Omicron than with previous variants.
Larry Bell argued in his Jan. 12 column that Omicron could "actually be a blessing — not just for my family and me, but also for many millions of others — perhaps serving as nature's vaccine."
Michael Reagan -- who likes to misinform about COVID -- complained in his Jan. 14 column that the CDC put an advisory against taking cruises at the height of Omicron because "these days a cruise ship is actually one of the safest places on the planet": "Passengers and crews are 100% vaccinated. Masks are mandatory in public spaces except when eating or drinking. Ships are not booked to full capacity. And there is a hospital with doctors and nurses on board." He then conceded a conflict of interest: "As I've mentioned before, my wife is a travel agent who books people on cruises and I often tag along."
In a Jan. 18 column, Christine Flowers attacked a study claiming that "schools that had mask mandates had fewer cases of COVID-19 than those without," though another study has since come to the same conclusion.
Judd Dunning ranted in his Jan. 18 column: "Brainwashed faithful lapdogs are getting unauthorized 4th and 5th COVID shots. Many in our own elite military forces and professional athletes across the globe are protesting vaccination injury risks while others, like [Novak] Djokovic, have been publicly paraded COVID detention like prisoners. Life insurance firms are reporting a spike of over 100,000 deaths a month beyond COVID." Dunning is implicitly blaming vaccines for the supposed deaths "beyond COVID," which isn't true.
Chamberas returned to rant in his Jan. 19 column: "In 2022 we are experiencing a requiem of the era in which "bloodletting" is passionately defended at all costs. The modern-day version of arrogantly supporting bloodletting is the stubborn defense of vaccine mandates!" He added: "This is no longer about healthcare but a Robespierre-inspired reign of terror against those deemed non-compliant to a persuasive loyalty oath for the regime in power. Comply or your life as you know is over instantly. This type of violent coercion runs counter to the ideals upon which our nation was founded."
Marc Schulte hurled his usual blizzard of numbers in his Jan. 19 column, while at one point claiming, "A possible contributing cause for the colossal 42% increase in COVID deaths between 2020 and 2021, in Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and California, is President Biden's insane policy, since Inauguration Day, of allowing millions of untested migrants to cross the southern border with Mexico." Medical experts disagree.
Michael Dorstewitz claimed in his Jan. 26 column that "the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) admitted last week that standard cloth masks are ineffective. They're just for show, to announce to everyone you meet that you're superior because you're wearing a mask. And vaccines aren't much better." In fact, the CDC didn't say that cloth masks were "ineffective"; they're just not as protective as N95 or KN95 masks.
Jared Whitley huffed in a March 7 column: "The insanity over masks has been particularly pronounced, especially because they accomplish virtually nothing to stop the spread of disease."
Gene Crume declared in a Feb. 23 column that "There is no such evidence for mandates" for vaccines or masks.
Reagan (with Michael Shannon) returned in a March 8 column: "When a swine flu vaccine was rushed to market in 1976 the VAERS database reported 25 deaths and the vaccine was judged too dangerous and pulled from the market. The same VAERS database lists 24,402 deaths from COVID-19 vaccinations and your federal government continues to claim the jab is just fine." Reagan and Shannon are just the latest anti-vaxxers deliberately misinterpreting VAERS data; reports of deaths there are unverified.
Instead of lazily slapping a "non-clinician" disclaimer on these columns, wouldn't Newsmax improve its credibility if it fact-checked columnists before publishing them?