Accuracy in Media

In the wake of the release of Dr. Anthony Fauci’s emails, BuzzFeed News heaps unjustified praise on him in a new article.

Forgoing any substantive discussion of his emails, the writers focus instead on his style. He’s “courteous, low-key, and empathetic” despite the “tremendous pressure” he was under “both because of the health threat facing the country and the political climate fostered by the Trump administration.”

“Fauci clearly resented any implication that his health team’s response was being shaped by the political values of the Trump administration,” the article says. “His guidance was not always welcomed by his own bosses at the White House. He faced a wide range of harassment, including angry tweets from Trump that questioned his expertise.”

Fauci denied being “muzzled” by the Trump administration in the pandemic’s early days. 

The piece mixes jabs at Trump with a fawning discussion of his tone, “a mix of friendly and formal, employing phrases like ‘let us discuss,’ ‘many thanks,’ and — in rare displays of displeasure — a delicate ‘yikes!’ He signs off as ‘Tony.’”

He also ostensibly has an “ambivalence toward his newfound celebrity status” despite his “embrace of a documentary crew who would tell his story.”

He wasn’t “clearly uncomfortable with the attention,” as the article claims. On the contrary, he’s capitalizing on his fame with a book deal to complement his documentary. That book’s been removed from the Amazon and Barnes & Noble websites since his emails were released.

What is also telling is what BuzzFeed News omitted from the article.

Fauci received warnings in early 2020 that the virus may have been “engineered” while assuring the public it wasn’t. He instead supported the “natural origin” theory, for which he received a “personal thank you” from the head of a nonprofit that utilized a $3.4 million government grant to fund research at the Wuhan lab accused of manufacturing the virus.

Fauci was also friendly with the director of the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, telling him in a March 2020 email, “We will get through this [pandemic] together.”

That same month, he hit Gov. Ron DeSantis (R-Fla.) for his state’s COVID response.    

“Regarding the bars and beaches, I have been screaming on TV 2 to 5 times per night to tell the younger generation to start taking this seriously,” he wrote in an email. “I am very surprised that Gov. DeSantis has not completely closed the bars, even if they serve food. …I will bring this up at the Task Force meeting tomorrow.”

Fauci is the highest-paid federal employee, raking in $434,312 a year.




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