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Letter: “Experts” must toe the official COVID line or be discredited

The opinions expressed by letter or opinion writers are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of AlachuaChronicle.com.

Dear Editor,

I read with great interest attorney Childers’ letter about experts, wherein he asserted that the system works, notwithstanding its flaws. According to Mr. Childers, competing experts on both sides of a scientific issue are to be expected and are therefore acceptable, subject to the weight attributed to the expert’s testimony by the jury. Having testified in hundreds of trials in the U.S. and Canada in state and federal courts over a 30 year period in the fields of human factors, injury biomechanics, and accident reconstruction, I can say with some authority that the system does not work. 

The expert witness business is essentially what many lawyers refer to as a “whore” industry. Most, but not all, so-called “experts” are indeed whores who sell themselves to the highest bidder. Science virtually never prevails in court. The most persuasive experts are usually the most glib who can do a good job of entertaining a jury. Few jurors have sufficient education in science or technology to even begin to understand highly technical arguments. Consequently they must be razzle-dazzled with a good dog and pony show to influence them. 

One of the major flaws in the system is the judges. Under various legal precedents, they are supposed to be “gatekeepers” who can keep junk science and phony experts out of the courtroom. An expert is subjected to a voir dire wherein the lawyer seeking to have the court allow the expert to testify tries to establish the expert’s alleged “impartiality.” This is usually done by establishing that the expert routinely testifies for both plaintiffs and defendants. In reality, all that is established is that the expert may be a “whore” who sells opinions to whatever lawyer or insurance company will pay him or her. 

The important issue that is virtually never established is how many legal cases the expert has reviewed over a period of time versus how many cases the expert turned down because he or she saw no merit in the case. Judges should demand to know this. For example, if an expert has reviewed 200 cases, how many has the expert turned down? What are the odds that an expert could preliminarily review 200 cases for further technical and scientific review and not find a single case for which courtroom testimony could not be offered on behalf of the retaining lawyer? Any time I have counseled a lawyer client to explore this issue with an opposing expert, the expert folded, since the evidence indicated that the expert was a whore for hire. 

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In the United States, there is a principle that when a lawyer hires an expert, the expert really is not in the lawyer’s employ. The expert is supposed to be an impartial advisor to the trier of fact. Judges, however, fail to adequately establish such impartiality by exploring the expert’s case history and the number of cases turned down by the expert. Thus the “whores” escape adequate judicial scrutiny and exclusion from the courtroom. 

Consequently, the system is so polluted that trials involving science and technology devolve into entertainment circuses. I personally know lots of conscientious experts who will not sell out for a fee, however I got so sick and tired of the corruption of the system by dishonest “experts” that I quit and wrote a novel about just how rancid the system really is. 

So what does all this have to do with the present COVID pandemic? Just follow the money. Almost all the so-called “official” medical and scientific experts in the COVID arena are beholden to some government organization or the pharmaceutical industry for grant money,  or they are subservient to the CDC or the WHO. Fail to toe the official COVID line, and they are blacklisted. No more grants. No more job. This is all about “science” for hire. 

I once had a meeting with an insurance company executive who closed the door to her office and told me with all candor:    

“Sal, I am going on to another job in a week. But I want you to know one simple fact. If you do forensic work for this insurance company, the first time you tell them something they don’t want to hear is the last time you will do any work for this insurance company.” 

So much for honest science and technology when somebody like that is controlling the checkbook. I declined to work for them, as did a few other experts I know. 

Sal Fariello, Gainesville

  • Glad you called them out for what they are. By these same standards we have a bunch of “whore” politicians as well… especially within our local confines.

  • Going further, I am going to expand your statement real truth2020: “Glad you called them out for what they are”…By these same standards, we have a bunch of “whore” experts, “whore” lawyers, and “whore” politicians too…”especially within our local confines.”

    Mr. Childers’ letter was better and he talked about how
    It was up to the “layperson” on the jury to decide…

    The layperson isn’t so dumb and we know a “whore”
    When we see one. The system can work when you
    Have a good lawyer, good experts, and an “unbiased
    Judge”.

    I do agree with Sal about Covid and “follow the money” though…

    This layperson believes Covid is a total crock…that’s its
    A means to control the people and to advance the communist utopia towards the new world order/one world
    Government…we should never have closed down our
    Economy for a “seasonal” flu l, and mask wearing is BS.

    How did the Mask thing and plandemic begin?
    It started when protesters were Mask wearing in Hong Kong to beat the facial recognition cameras, and then China said “no face masks”…Hong Kong says, “ no! That’s Unconstitutional!” China responds with,” ok, flu bug, quarantine!”… they called quarantine to stop the mask wearing protesters…

    “Never waste a good crisis!”…now we got flu BS, masks, quarantine , a suspension of our liberty & freedom, and BLM Marxist protesters and
    Antifa here wearing face masks and rioting/looting, etc…

    Do a crime with a face mask on should be mandatory time! Should be:
    Violent protest/riot with face mask on, mandatory 5 years
    Federal prison.

    I can’t wait until the “big lie” is over…

    • Good amplification of my thoughts and expansion of underlying reasons for the current political weaponizing of the current medical crisis.
      I agree with you that we as laypeople should be afforded the opportunity to determine for ourselves whether or not we want to wear a mask. Unfortunately the powers within the community, however wrong they may be, feel we are incapable of making the determination for ourselves. Not only that, they will continue to pat one another on the arse and say it was their intervention that saved society. This is only the beginning of what our local leaders are hoping to interject into our lives. Masks today, rental properties in the works…. what’s next in their Marxist utopia?
      I feel for the people who have lost family and friends but what will be the final cost? Politicians speak of the enormous debt being passed on to our children but they don’t seem to understand that by shutting down the financial might of our country, the debt will last long after we have died from global warming and carbon emissions.

      • You had to bring up global warming…Man made global warming is a hoax too… Public schools are brainwashing
        Today’s youth in school to grow up to be snowflake
        Commis. CO2 is good for plants and through photosynthesis, creates oxygen for us to breath. Cutting
        Down trees for biomass fuel hurts the planet, flora, & fauna. “Whatever we do to the web of life, we do to ourselves“…how are tomorrow’s children gonna pay their
        Electric bills? If we get one world government, it will be
        “Mad Max”…by the way, those discarded face masks are
        Polluting the oceans and turtles , dolphins, & Whales
        Are choking on them like the plastic straws… hypocrite
        Politicians need to ban disposable masks now to protect
        The planet.

        • Glad you “picked” up on that. After all, those types of political agendas will be what they use to dismantle the Constitution of the United States in their continuing efforts to take away rights of all Americans.
          I would be willing to bet that if the “left” claims both houses of Congress and the Presidency in the November elections, they will work to make their political beliefs “right” and propose a bill to make it a “protected” class.

          • Trump needs to extend the November election
            Until they find a cure for Covid…He can use his
            Executive Order (Emergency powers)because of the pandemic…. Congress can vote on extending the election , and adding more terms until they find a cure…
            Maybe Trump can be in office a few more terms…
            This will make Dems heads explode and they would probably
            Burn “this old house”down…

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