The Fall of Dr. Raoult

The good doctor returns to First Things with an essay on the demise of Dr. Didier Raoult, the (in)famous French microbiologist who falsely claimed hydroxychloroquine as a valid treatment for Covid-19.

A man who, whatever his faults, had deserved well of his fellow creatures, who contributed more than most to the reduction of the concrete suffering of mankind, will now be remembered not for the good he did nor for the enlightenment he brought, but for a kind of charlatanry, without his ever truly having been a charlatan. He is a man destroyed by the dialectical relationship of ego to mankind’s willingness to invest gurus with all but ­supernatural powers.

Maoist Thought in Medical School

The title says it all for Theodore Dalrymple’s Epoch Times column slamming an atrocious, anti-white, maoist article that was somehow allowed to be published in the official publication of the Association of American Medical Colleges.

On a more optimistic note, we would like to extend all of our readers our best wishes for a peaceful, healthy, and happy New Year.

By accident of birth, we are racist (if we are white), no matter what we do or whatever position we occupy; by accident of birth we are victims of racism (if we are non-white) whatever we do or whatever position we occupy. So change is both necessary and impossible, a perfect recipe for permanent political agitation, guilt on the part of whites and resentment on the part of non-whites.

J.K. Rowling Benefits Us by Pointing Out Absurdity; Efforts Made to Silence Her

The dissenting doctor gives yet another example of the absurd and disordered times we are currently living through by highlighting the relentless attacks by the radical gender ideologues on J.K. Rowling.

It might be said that Rowling did not have to comment on the absurdity of the new Scottish legal dispensation, for everyone has the freedom to remain silent (a freedom, alas, too often disregarded), and therefore that, in a sense, she brought the nastiness towards her on herself, since it was entirely predictable. But if a powerful and privileged person such as she refrains from comment through fear of the response, the totalitarians among us, who are many, have won.

Piketty’s Tax Utopia

Back at Law & Liberty, our skeptical doctor demolishes the latest book by a popular marxist economist, who is still spouting the same, tired socialist nonsense as his comrades from the red 20th century.

Never once do considerations other than increased equality enter into Professor Piketty’s mind. There would be no privacy in his world, since the transparency of all dealings, incomes, and expenditures would be absolute. His utopia is tyranny in the name of virtue, the only virtue that counts: equality of outcome.

The Unavoidable Necessity to Make Judgments

In last week’s Takimag column, the critical doctor explains the indisputable fact that all of us must make judgments during the course of our lives.

Judgment, as Hippocrates said a long time ago with regard to medicine, is uncertain; and yet we must exercise it, for life is judgment. Those who claim not to make judgments are always making a self-congratulatory meta-judgment, as it were: that it is a great and glorious thing, indicative of largeness of heart, not to judge. But judge we must, for we have always to choose between alternatives.

Lions Led by Donkeys

On a recent visit to a British hospital, Dr. Dalrymple was reminded of the cliché in the title of this The Critic article.

Needless to say, this poster did not manufacture itself or put itself on the wall: its appearance there was the product of human labour, albeit of labour at a low intellectual level, that of ambitious mediocrities. The contrast with the surgeon, who was probably subordinate in some way to these people, could not have been more painful. 

The Mystery of Murder

In the autumn issue of City Journal, our skeptical doctor recounts the case of the brutal 1949 murder of Samuel Setty in England, as well as the life of the murderer responsible for this contemptible crime.

How do we become what we are? Many have suffered far worse than Hume in childhood, and had none of his advantages, but do not become killers, or even accessories after the fact. There is something ineffably mysterious about the human condition that defies full explanation, though the condition itself dictates that we try to find that explanation.

Compulsion for Its Own Sake?

Back at Law & Liberty, Dr. Dalrymple considers the growing popularity among governments of making Covid vaccinations compulsory, and our favorite doctor takes a firm stand against such ill-conceived measures.

From the editors here at The Skeptical Doctor, we would like to wish all of our readers around the world a Merry Christmas.

In summary, I conclude that there is no reason to make vaccination against Covid compulsory, not even for subgroups of the population. To do so risks provoking civil unrest for no good reason. This conclusion is provisional: I do not exclude the possibility that one day compulsory vaccination might be justified, though I do not expect it ever to be so and think we are far from that situation now. Of course, governments love compulsion for its own sake: it lets the population know who is boss.

Corruption Just Isn’t What It Used To Be

Over at Quadrant, the good doctor breaks down his views on delusion, dishonesty, and modern corruption as he thinks back to ol’ Tony Blair.

It is now normal for everyone to proclaim his honesty despite patent acts of dishonesty, even when caught in the act. Thus, genuinely to believe that you are honest while you are nakedly pursuing your own self-interest under the guise of some elevated general principle has become almost the normal state of mankind, at least that part of it that enters the politico-administrative class.

The Contemporary Revenge on Notre Dame’s Greatness

The critical doctor warns of the planned desecration of the interior of the awe-inspiring Notre Dame cathedral at the hands of French bureaucrats and their tasteless accomplices among modernist architects.

All contemporary French public buildings are monstrosities, from the Opéra Bastille and the Ministry of Finance in Paris to the Musée de la Romanité in Nîmes. The more that is spent on them, the worse they get. They almost always desecrate their surroundings, as if their architects wanted to take their revenge on previous ages, as mediocrity revenges itself on genius.