I have never been a singer in the anti-Dr. Anthony Fauci chorus. I always admired his work in the 90s to bring the HIV catastrophe to heel and thought his early efforts as Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, advising President Trump on fighting the COVID crisis, provided a vital public service to our country.
But of late, I had been having second thoughts. I am mildly put off by Fauci’s relishing embrace of worldwide celebrity. I thought it a bit frivolous, for example, his agreeing to be interviewed for a cover story in the fashion magazine, In Style.
And it was certainly an eye-popping obeisance to popular culture when the man—who said we will have to give up handshaking forever—benignly blessed in a Vanity Fair interview (of course) “asymptomatic strangers” hooking up for sexual liaisons using the dating app Tinder.
Still, those were minor irritations. Nobody is perfect, after all. When the beautiful people decide to make one an icon, resistance is futile.
But now, Fauci has crossed a line that should sound the alarm—audaciously declaring that combatting infectious disease requires the mindboggling task of “rebuilding the infrastructures of human existence.” Not only that but he opined that accomplishing these top-to-bottom “radical changes” requires “strengthening the United Nations and its agencies, particularly the World Health Organization.”
Fauci’s advocacy for essentially establishing an international rule by experts technocracy—co-authored with his National Institute Scientific Senior Adviser David M. Morens—appeared in the respected scientific journal Cell, an important peer-reviewed publication in which scientists usually share discoveries in fields like stem cell research, genetics, and immunology.
Articles in Cell (and its ilk) mostly focus on important but arcane technical issues of science and medicine. But with increasing frequency, such journals have lately pushed ideology too—usually promoting left-wing and internationalist public policy prescriptions, as Fauci and Morens did in Cell.
Fauci and Morens’ prescription should give every lover of liberty and national sovereignty great pause. To prevent future pandemics, the authors argue that virtually everything in society will have to be transformed, “from cities to homes to workplaces, to water and sewer systems, to recreational and gatherings venues.”
The scope and breadth of their ambition is stunningly hubristic. “In such a transformation,” they write, “we will need to prioritize changes in those human behaviors that constitute risks for the emergence of infectious diseases. Chief among them are reducing crowding at home, work, and in public places as well as minimizing environmental perturbations such as deforestation, intense urbanization, and intensive animal farming.”
Oh, is that all? No, as a matter of fact, it is not. The authors quickly add: “Equally important are ending global poverty, improving sanitation and hygiene, and reducing unsafe exposure to animals, so that humans and potential human pathogens have limited opportunities for contact.” Holy cow!
Think about what all of that would take! At the very least, the gargantuan task would require unprecedented and intrusive government regulations and the transferring of policy control from the national to international level—nothing less than an international technocratic and authoritarian supra-governing system—with the power to direct how we interact with each other as family, friends, and in community.
This hyper-state would have to control how the economy operates, where we could build factories and plow farms. It would also determine how and where we live, what we eat, and permanently dictate when and if we can travel. And think about the cost and the means it would take to break inevitable popular resistance. No thanks!