The Ignorant Cranks Behind Trump’s Hydroxychloroquine Push


A guy Jared Kushner found on Amazon, a quack, and Rudy Giuliani. What could go wrong?

On a Sunday night, during his 928,365th televised coronavirus briefing, Donald Trump made an extremely hard sell for the anti-malarial drug hydroxychloroquine, whose effectiveness against COVID-19 is still virtually unknown. “What do you have to lose?” the president asked of taking a drug for which there is very little data, as though he was talking about trying a new flavor of Laffy Taffy or experimenting with two-ply versus four-ply toilet paper. “I really think they should take it,” he said of ill patients. “But it’s their choice. And it’s their doctor’s choice or the doctors in the hospital. But hydroxychloroquine. Try it, if you’d like.”

In fact, as health experts and actual doctors have stressed, there is a lot patients could lose by trying hydroxychloroquine just for yucks, given that the drug can cause a heart arrhythmia that could lead to cardiac arrest, for starters. “It causes psychiatric symptoms, cardiac problems and a host of other bad side effects,” Megan Ranney, an emergency physician at Brown University told the New York Times, noting that she had never seen an elected official hype a drug as a miracle cure the way Trump has. “There may be a role for it for some people,” she said, “but to tell Americans ‘you don’t have anything to lose,’ that’s not true.”…

RTFA. The gory details aren’t anything unusual in the smog of incompetency that surrounds the Fake President like the miasma of a stage-fart. Worth knowing to offer to that silly breed of American apparently still dazzled by the porcelain smile of a reality TV “star”.

15 thoughts on “The Ignorant Cranks Behind Trump’s Hydroxychloroquine Push

  1. Ellen H. says:

    Hi, I’m sharing a quote from the NY Times:

    “If hydroxychloroquine becomes an accepted treatment, several Pharmaceutical Companies stand to Profit, including Shareholders and Senior Executives with Connections to the President.”

    “Mr. Trump himself has a small Personal Financial Interest in Sanofi, the French drugmaker that makes Plaquenil, the brand-name version of Hydroxychloroquine.”

    If true, wouldn’t this be slightly Illegal?

      • Teflon Don says:

        “Trump’s Virus Drug Whim Costs Millions, Even as the Mania Wanes” https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-05-05/trump-s-virus-drug-whim-costs-millions-even-as-the-mania-wanes
        “A top Senate Democrat is demanding information from the Trump administration on efforts to distribute an anti-malarial drug to help states fight the coronavirus before it was rigorously vetted as a potential treatment.” http://sandhillsexpress.com/abc_politics/government-coronavirus-response-updates-senator-demands-information-on-distribution-of-hydroxychloroquine-drug-abcid36280891/ “Sen. Patty Murray, D-Washington, the ranking Democrat on the Senate panel that oversees the Department of Health and Human Services, asked Secretary Alex Azar to provide details to Congress on the distribution of hydroxychloroquine, according to a new letter obtained exclusively by ABC News.
        Throughout March and April, Trump and top administration officials touted the potential benefits of the anti-malarial drug, prompting a surge in demand for the drug. Some Republican and Democratic governors across the country also promoted its potential efficacy in treating COVID-19, despite a lack of clear scientific evidence.”
        Re: Dr. Rick Bright, a former senior health official in the administration, alleging he was removed from his post at the agency responsible for vaccine development after resisting efforts from political leaders at HHS to promote hydroxychloroquine as a potential treatment see https://www.help.senate.gov/imo/media/doc/April%2030%20-%20BARDA%20letter%20FINAL.pdf

      • Update says:

        (July 28, 2020): Dr. Anthony Fauci on Tuesday dismissed dubious medical advice President Donald Trump shared on Twitter the previous evening, vowing to continue in his role as the country’s top infectious disease expert despite a new salvo of attacks from the White House. https://www.politico.com/news/2020/07/28/fauci-trump-ineffective-coronavirus-treatment-383809
        In an interview Tuesday morning on ABC’s “Good Morning America,” Fauci promoted best practices for combating the coronavirus and repeatedly contradicted the president, who tweeted more than a dozen times Monday night in defense of hydroxychloroquine as a treatment for Covid-19.
        Fauci also was asked about one of Trump’s retweets Monday that cast doubt on his scientific credentials, including a message alleging he had “misled the American public on many issues.” [Steve Bannon’s War Room https://twitter.com/WarRoomPandemic/status/1285948554880544769 ]
        The widely respected immunologist has served as director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases for more than three-and-a-half decades, advising several presidents over the course of his career.
        “I don’t know how to address that. I’m just going to certainly continue doing my job,” Fauci said Tuesday, adding: “I have not been misleading the American public under any circumstances.”

        • p/s says:

          Twitter deletes video promoted by Trump on hydroxychloroquine use for coronavirus https://www.foxnews.com/politics/twitter-post-that-seems-to-show-doctors-praising-hydroxychloroquine-use-for-coronavirus One of the doctors in the video, who was identified in reports as Dr. Stella Immanuel, claimed that she treated more than 350 coronavirus patients — some with diabetes and high blood pressure — and not a single one died after being administered hydroxychloroquine, zinc and Zithromax. She claimed that she even administers the drug in prophylactic measures.

          “A Houston doctor who praises hydroxychloroquine and says that face masks aren’t necessary to stop transmission of the highly contagious coronavirus has become a star on the right-wing internet, garnering tens of millions of views on Facebook on Monday alone. Donald Trump Jr. declared the video of Stella Immanuel a “must watch,” while Donald Trump himself retweeted the video.
          Dr. Immanuel has claimed that gynecological problems like cysts and endometriosis are in fact caused by people having sex in their dreams with demons and witches, that alien DNA is currently used in medical treatments, and that scientists are cooking up a vaccine to prevent people from being religious. And, despite appearing in Washington, D.C. to lobby Congress on Monday, she has said that the government is run in part not by humans but by “reptilians” and other aliens.
          Both Facebook and Twitter eventually deleted videos of Immanuel’s speech from their sites, citing rules against COVID-19 disinformation.
          Immanuel responded in her own way, declaring that Jesus Christ would destroy Facebook’s servers if her videos weren’t restored to the platform.
          Immanuel is a registered physician in Texas, according to a Texas Medical Board database, and operates a medical clinic out of a strip mall next to her church, Firepower Ministries.

  2. Steve Ruis says:

    Why does not one of our brave news reports ask in one of the interminable press briefings of Trump and Pence are taking these drugs as a preventative. If not, then we’ll know “Only Recommended for Proles (#ORFP).

  3. ‘出る釘は打たれる says:

    “A Health and Human Services official helping to develop a coronavirus vaccine said Wednesday he was removed from his post because he questioned the value of drugs being pushed by President Donald Trump.” https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2020/04/22/coronavirus-ex-hhs-official-says-he-ousted-opposing-drug/3007415001/
    Rick Bright, who until this week was director of the HHS Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), said he is speaking out “because to combat this deadly virus, science – not politics or cronyism – has to lead the way.”
    Bright said he opposed the use of chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine – drugs touted by Trump and others in the administration – because they “have potentially serious risks associated with them, including increased mortality observed in some recent studies in patients with COVID-19.”
    In his statement, Bright said he called on the HHS Inspector General, the department’s internal watchdog, to investigate the circumstances of his dismissal from BARDA.
    “This Administration has politicized the work of BARDA and has pressured me and other conscientious scientists to fund companies with political connections as well as efforts that lack scientific merit,” he said. “Rushing blindly towards unproven drugs can be disastrous and result in countless more deaths.”

    Trump said he doesn’t know anything about Bright or his accusations.
    “I have never heard of him,” Trump said Wednesday at a White House news conference. “I don’t know who he is.”

  4. Update says:

    (April 24, 2020): “On Friday, the FDA issued a safety announcement regarding the use of hydroxychloroquine or chloroquine, saying the drugs’ use “should be limited to clinical trial settings or for treating certain hospitalized patients.” The move came in response to a growing number of “adverse incident” reports from hospitals and outpatient treatment, focused on a known side effect of chloroquine and its derivatives: changes in heart rhythm that can be (and apparently have been) fatal.” https://arstechnica.com/science/2020/04/more-reason-for-caution-with-malaria-drugs-as-covid-19-treatment/
    FDA Drug Safety Communication https://www.fda.gov/media/137250/download
    “The rise and fall of Trump’s obsession with hydroxychloroquine : Forty days of promotion, hype — and eventual retreat” https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2020/04/24/rise-fall-trumps-obsession-with-hydroxychloroquine/
    “Fox News hosts go mum on the covid-19 drug they spent weeks promoting” https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/media/fox-news-hosts-go-mum-on-hydroxychloroquine-the-covid-19-drug-they-spent-weeks-promoting/2020/04/22/eeaf90c2-84ac-11ea-ae26-989cfce1c7c7_story.html

  5. Curiouser and curiouser says:

    Trump dismisses hydroxychloroquine study that undermines him as a “Trump enemy statement” : suggests his own government is part of a conspiracy to demean his favorite unproven drug. https://www.vox.com/2020/5/19/21263989/trump-hydroxychloroquine-study-enemy-statement-fda
    The “Trump enemy statement” in question is a study of coronavirus patients in Veterans Affairs hospitals that became the basis for a Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warning about hydroxychloroquine treatments for coronavirus.
    The study, which the National Institutes of Health posted to its website last month and is the largest of its kind, was not peer-reviewed, but it found more deaths among those treated with hydroxychloroquine than those treated with standard care. Researchers also reported finding no benefit to its use.
    The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) subsequently posted a warning on its website that “cautions against use of hydroxychloroquine or chloroquine for COVID-19 outside of the hospital setting or a clinical trial due to risk of heart rhythm problems.”

    Trump’s infatuation with hydroxychloroquine can be traced back to a controversial French study released in March on a small number of Covid-19 patients that found hydroxychloroquine could lessen the duration of infection. As Media Matters for America has detailed, the French study and similar anecdotal evidence from China was covered by Fox News and amplified by Trump, with Trump’s amplification in turn being covered by Fox — in other words, it was the perfect illustration of the Fox-to-Trump feedback loop. https://www.mediamatters.org/fox-news/how-fox-news-convinced-trump-it-found-miracle-cure-coronavirus

  6. Update says:

    The Food and Drug Administration has revoked its emergency use authorization for the drugs hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine for the treatment of Covid-19. https://www.cnn.com/2020/06/15/politics/fda-hydroxychloroquine-coronavirus/index.html
    Hydroxychloroquine was frequently touted by President Donald Trump, and he has claimed to have used it himself.
    After reviewing the current research available on the drugs, the FDA determined that the drugs do not meet “the statutory criteria” for emergency use authorization as they are unlikely to be effective in treating Covid-19 based on the latest scientific evidence, the agency noted on its website on Monday. https://www.fda.gov/emergency-preparedness-and-response/mcm-legal-regulatory-and-policy-framework/emergency-use-authorization

    Meanwhile “Rare, super coronavirus antibodies likely to yield vaccine, say Stanford, UCSF experts” https://www.sfchronicle.com/health/article/Rare-super-coronavirus-antibodies-likely-to-15339594.php
    “Epidemiologists have found “neutralizing antibodies” in fewer than 5% of COVID-19 patients, but the ones they are now attempting to isolate are unique in their ability to prevent SARS-CoV-2 — the specific coronavirus that causes the illness — from entering human cells.
    It means anyone with these antibodies would almost certainly be immune to the disease and that their blood plasma could potentially be used to inoculate others, according to several studies published over the past month by research laboratories in the United States and China.”
    (see https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1074761320301813 )

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