Clay and Buck

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Alex Berenson Joins Us to Talk Covid Insanity

13 Jul 2021

BUCK: With us now is a man who has been in the crosshairs of the Fauciites all along, Alex Berenson was formerly a New York Times reporter, he was the author of the very excellent “Unreported Truths about COVID-19.” A three-part series, you can get all of it on Amazon, assuming they haven’t tried to pull it off of Amazon. Alex, great to have you, man.

ALEX: It’s good to be with you.

BUCK: I want to ask you what is the stuff Clay and I always talk about how we are not part of the suppression, the suppression apparatus or we’re not covered by it, I mean, insofar as we do radio; so people will hear what you say. They cannot stop you here. There’s no algorithm that shuts it down. What do you want to say about where we are right now with vaccines that you’re not supposed to say but that you truly and firmly believe?

ALEX: So, that’s a great question, Buck. And, you know, I want to say, I now have a direct outlet, too, which is there’s a platform called Substack, a publishing platform which a number of independent and some conservative journalists have gone to recently, which, you know, like a Glenn Greenwald who’s not conservative or Matt Taibbi, who’s not conservative. So I’m on there now. Again, the publishing platform is called Substack, and mine, it’s just Unreported Truths, if you want in Alex Berenson, you’ll find it. And I feel the need to say that because, you know, I was censored by Amazon last year, and I am on Twitter and they’ve been pretty good but I’m aware that they — you know, they could decide to pull the plug on me if they wanted. Okay. So, now I got that out of the way.

Here’s what I think about the vaccines, and you can read what I think in an un-caricatured way at that site. You can read the newsletters. I think the vaccines have a very complicated risk-benefit analysis. This is not me being a conspiracy theorist. I’m not talking about 5G or graphene oxide or anything like that. What I’m saying, these are complicated pharmaceutical products. They basically are technology that’s never really, you know, been used on a wide scale until the last few months. We don’t know how well they work, we don’t know how long they work, we don’t really know what the side effect profile is, and we don’t — and we know that covid is far, far, far more dangerous to older people and to really obese people, to people with severe co-morbidities than everybody else. So what happened?

When these came out last year, when the clinical trial data came out and they showed supposedly 95% efficacy, there was a push by all the people who pushed everything else last year like masks and lockdowns and school closures, we’re gonna make everybody get these. And guess what, it turns out that the math is a lot more complicated than anybody realized, although people should have realized it at the time and that it appears that the side effects for healthy young men, they can get myocarditis, young women can have these terrible blood clotting disorders. These are rare. But covid is also not very dangerous to those people. And so people at say 60 and over, 70 and over the risk benefits of the vaccine looks pretty good. Not as good as we thought at first, but pretty good. But for everybody else, it’s far more complicated. And instead of being honest about that, the health establishment has not been telling you the truth about it. And, you know, two months ago they were trying to — and I use the word sucker and I use it again — they are trying to sucker people with lotteries and stuff like that, get younger people at low risk to get these. Now they’re getting angry and they’re threatening mandates.

CLAY: Alex, this is Clay Travis. I appreciate all the work you’ve done over the past years, and I’ve had you on a few times as well. Glad you’re on with us here. So I want to focus on kids for a minute here. There’s a big study that came out from England — and I know you synthesized that study. But I got three kids. I know you have kids too. I’ve got a 13-year-old, I’ve got a 10-year-old, and I’ve got a 6-year-old. To me he talk about the risk-benefit, cost-benefit analysis, there is no way to justify, based on all the data that I have seen, young children being given this vaccine for a virus that literally, essentially, has a zero percent danger to them. Can you quantify that — ’cause there’s a lot of parents and grandparents out there — can you quantify the risk analysis that you think parents should go through as it pertains to kids in particular and this vaccine?

ALEX: Sure. So the British data is quite good. Britain has tell million people under the age of 18. They reported 61 deaths from covid which, okay, that would be one in 200 though which is pretty low, but the real number is lower than that because when they actually looked at death they found that only 25 of those could be linked to covid, which is even lower. Then we looked at who the 25 kids were, they found that 13 had what’s called complex neurodegenerative disorders. You know, these are kids with severe — you know, severe birth defects, probably. So now we’re down to 12. And then when they looked at those 12, they found that only six, only six out of 12 million children or young adults in Britain, children or teens who were previously healthy had died of covid in the first year of the epidemic. And Britain had a bad covid epidemic, as bad as the U.S. So that’s one in two million. On is why on earth would we be encouraging children or young adults to get a vaccine, even if it had no risks, for — you know, for an illness that that’s rare? And the factual, this doesn’t have no risk. There are many, many cases of myocarditis, which is a heart inflammation — which can be quite serious. It can be mild and also be quite serious — that have already shown up in the vaccine side effect reporting database.

BUCK: Alex, it seems — it seems — can I ask you about this just when you talk about the kids because de Blasio, the mayor here in New York, just said that he — even though the CDC says vaccinated kids shouldn’t have to mask up, the policy right now is masking in the schools. And you know masking is my — it is my white whale. It’s the thing I will never concede but we’ll get into that in a moment. Is this just because overanxious adults like the teachers, the teachers union folks don’t want to be exposed to the kids that may give them the virus? Because otherwise it does seem completely insane or are they really saying the one in a million risk to kids is too high? Which is it?

ALEX: No, it’s completely insane. Because even if there were a higher traffic, masks would do nothing, okay? And in the last year unfortunately what I’ve concluded about masks is that people in the public health establishment know masks — they know that masks are useless. Anybody that looks at the data at all can see that masks are useless. Masks are a symbol, okay? This epidemic essentially ended on the day that the CDC said people who are vaccinated don’t have wear masks because everybody stopped wearing masks, whether you were vaccinated or not. And when you don’t see people mask, it is hard to remember to be afraid of this thing that, you know, that’s never put anybody in the hospital, that you know that’s never killed anybody that you know or maybe, you know, it killed your 83-year-old grandmother who had Alzheimer’s.

The risks of covid are, you know, aside again from that fraction of people who are very elderly or very obese, you know, are just so low that it’s impossible for anybody to stay scared of it. And that’s why we have to keep justifying these measures. And look. Masks are problematic, but then these vaccines are much more problematic because a vaccine is not — you know, it’s not a piece of cloth you can take off. It is something that’s being injected to you. And we should know what the risks really are if we’re gonna mandate that.

CLAY: Alex, I know you have young kids. I have said — my wife’s agreed — we’re not going to get our kids vaccinated. We have one who theoretical might be eligible now. He’s 13. Buck and I have been open on this show. We both have had covid ourselves. I’ve been out, and I still have covid antibodies. So personally I don’t see the point of me getting a vaccine when I already have the antibodies that the vaccine would be designed to give me.

ALEX: Yeah.

CLAY: Some people — and I think that’s like a pretty logical perspective. Now, some people out there will label that kind of opinion anti-vax. That’s not accurate, and I think it’s true for you to. There are vaccines that children should get, and my kids got all of the measles, mumps, rubella, all of those vaccines. But this different, right? And what you’re saying is —

ALEX: It’s absolutely different.

CLAY: — we should actually be looking at the logic and the analysis as opposed to just accepting what we’re being told.

ALEX: It’s absolutely different. It works differently. It’s like no other vaccine. It’s being pushed like no other vaccine. And the wants to be you raised are actually the two points that — and again, I’m not a conspiracy theorist, but there’s two points that come up the most that have the least good answers. One is, why would we push kids to be vaccinated? And, two, why aren’t we telling people who have had covid who know they’ve had — you know, had covid with a positive test and with antibodies, why are we telling those people to get vaccinated? That’s how immunity works. And when they have studied this, okay, when they’ve looked at large samples of people who’ve been — you know, who have gotten covid and looked at reinfection rates, they are as low as reinfection — as infection rates for the vaccine at the peak of vaccine efficacy.

BUCK: Alex, can I ask, why can’t Fauci — sorry. There’s a million things as you’re talking that I want to ask you but I also don’t want to interrupt your flow. And, you know, we’re gonna have to take a commercial break, Alex, and we’ll keep you through. But one question I want to put it out there and then we can address it on the other side would be, why is it that we can’t get a straight answer about naturally derived immunity from the public health authorities? But put a pin in that, Alex, for one second. We’re gonna keep you through, and we’re gonna address this on the other side.


CLAY: We are talking right now with Alex Berenson, who has done an amazing job of covering the covid insanity over the past year and a half. And it feels a little bit like every time we talk — and I know you feel like this sometimes, Alex, as well, and, Buck, too, that, you know, this is like — it’s like you’re cutting through all of the what I would call cosmetic theater that has surrounded so much of covid and actually discussing data, which the Big Tech companies to a large extent don’t want and certainly mainstream media doesn’t want. So I appreciate you being on with us, Alex, and continuing to do this work and I want to build on what Buck was just talking about as we went to break and we women’s, Buck and I have both had covid — we are part of probably — I know you look at it, too, Alex — around a hundred million people — and that might be a conservative number — in the United States —

ALEX: Conservative.

CLAY: — who have had covid and gotten over it. No one seems willing to even talk about people like us who know we have covid antibodies, who had covid, and it doesn’t really make any sense for us to go get the vaccine. Why does no one talk about the hundred million — that’s a conservative number — in this country who’ve already had covid?

ALEX: That’s another great question. I don’t have the answer to that. I mean, all I’m trying to do is look at what the data says about whether or not people like have good immunity. And the answer to that question is yes, it’s probably venue vaccine ventured immunity because we know it’s broader than vaccine generated immunity. The vaccines only cause your body to produce the spike protein; so you’re only getting antibodies against part of the virus and in fact it’s not even the whole spike. It looks like that for some reason the antibodies are mainly to one part of the protein called the receptor binding domain. Whereas if you get sick with covid you have antibodies against this whole spike and against other parts of the virus. And so it’s reasonable to assume that those would last longer and be more resistant to mutations. Okay. And then there’s other work being done showing that it may even be detrimental for you, if you’re young and relatively healthy and have had covid to get the vaccine essentially ’cause the vaccine can kind of cause your body to actually go into overdrive and actually burn out some of your T cells. Now, I’m not gonna — that’s very complicated technically. I don’t claim to fully understand it. But the papers that I’ve read do say that.

CLAY: The Cleveland Clinic had a report, right, Alex, where they basically said that if you had to choose between the two, that natural immunity, meaning you got the virus itself as opposed to vaccine based immunity, meaning you get the vaccine, the natural immunity of getting covid provides more protection than the vaccine would in that scenario.

ALEX: That’s absolutely correct. And then, to go to your point about why aren’t we talking about this, the Cleveland Clinic essentially had to backtrack. They had to say, you know what? We’re not really saying this and the reason it came up is they were arguing, well, maybe we should prioritize people who haven’t had the vaccine —

CLAY: Right.

ALEX: — to get doses. And because this was a little bit too honest they had to backtrack. I mean, this is something — you see this — you see this happen repeatedly. This happened yesterday, believe it or not with the World Health Organization. The top scientist with the World Health Organization said yesterday we don’t have good data on mixing doses, it’s a mistake to mix doses. Which is what they’ve been talking about in some countries. If you got the AstraZeneca, you could then get the Moderna vaccine later, even though we’ve never actually tested them in a clinical trial that way, and she just pointed out there’s no data here. That’s a mistake.

Well, guess what? The vaccine fanatics got to her, and she had to say, “Oh, I’m not saying it’s a mistake if national health authorities tell you to do it. I’m saying it’s a mistake if you do it yourself.” This has happened over and over and over again in the last year and it’s why people are suspicious and it’s why people don’t trust, you know, Anthony Fauci. It’s why even though he attacked me directly a couple of days ago, you know, it didn’t stop me from continuing to accumulate followers on the Twitter, continuing to, you know, have people sign up for my Substack. People want information that they perceive as unfiltered and that is unfiltered. And that’s really what I’m trying to do.

BUCK: Alex, Fauci’s a little lab coat tyrant. I mean, I’ll just say it. I’m fond of pointing out that this guy really should be paid by MSNBC or CNN and not NIH. But I want to ask you more specifically, other than just taking a shot at Fauci, who deserves, I think, all the ire that I throw at him, why is it we don’t hear more about whether there’s gonna be boosters or not? Because that should factor very directly into — you know, it seems like there’s the 90% number they came up with and Biden recently said okay, we didn’t hit it by Fourth of July, and everyone’s kind of ignoring — I mean, normal people now — and I also would posit to you that there’s an anxiety disorder this has created that’s affecting millions and millions of people, that covid is — there’s essentially a covid-19 anxiety issue where people now are no longer rational or reasonable. But what about the boosters? I mean, are we gonna need them or not? And how can they not know?

ALEX: I think it looks like we’re going to need them. Either we’re gonna need them or we’re just gonna have accept vaccine failure. Because if you look at Israel and the U.K. which are the countries that led, okay, they led the way in vaccinations. They were faster than we were. Those countries have seen huge spikes in positive tests and cases in the last four weeks or so. And they haven’t seen huge spikes in deaths or hospitalizations. And there’s a number of possible reasons for that, including — let’s be honest — including, one, that the vaccines might be offering partial protection even in people who are getting covid and so they’re not winding up in the hospital. But that’s only one possible reason, but it is clear now that the 95% figure that was thrown around last year is not accurate. Okay. It’s not accurate because at the beginning believe it or not you’re more likely to get covid immediately after your first dose than if you go through and have your second dose, you do enter a window where you have pretty good protection, but that window doesn’t appear to last that long, and those countries are seeing that right now.

CLAY: We’re gonna bring you back for one more segment, if we can, Alex, because people are loading us down with questions. We appreciate the time.


BUCK: We have Alex Berenson, whose Substack you will love if you subscribe, if you care about covid matters and the truth. He is with us now. Alex, we wanted to sort of focus for our last few minutes with you on where we go now. Because you’re seeing more and more people, notably the former Planned Parenthood director — which put that aside for a second — went on CNN and said we should make life uncomfortable for the unvaccinated. More people are talking about mandates. The Biden administration seems to want to use the private sector as their cat’s paw, in a sense, as their instrument here to get people to get vaccinated. Where is this all going, as you see it?

ALEX: I mean, that is a great question, and it’s something people — you know, people don’t understand me at all, certainly people on the left don’t understand me. And you know, they like to say that I’ve secretly been vaccinated. I said it on Twitter yesterday, and I’ll say it to you, I’ve not been vaccinated. I don’t want this. I don’t know how long it lasts, I don’t know what the side effects might be. I’m perfectly comfortable that if I hadn’t already gotten covid that I’ll be fine if I get it.

So there’s lots and lots of people like me and you and Clay who just aren’t interested in this. And maybe in a few months or a few years we’ll make our own decision about it and we’ll get there, and that will be fine. But for the government to force this and to force it on children is insane. And we’re seeing now because half working population doesn’t want to be vaccinated because it looks like the parents of 60 or 70 or 80% of kids don’t want them vaccinated. There’s a sort of increasing fanaticism on the other side, and they don’t seem to understand what the point of all of this was which is to get us back to normal life. You know, covid is not something that’s gonna go away forever. We’re gonna have to manage it. We are managing it. Life is going on. And the people that could benefit the most from vaccines have almost universal gotten them now.

And it’s funny to me when people say, oh, you know, I benefit, you know, from this fight. If they drop this, if the Biden administration drops these efforts, my audience would go away tomorrow, at least, you know, a lot of it would. It’s because they’re forcing this or quasi-forcing it, as I say. They’re using companies. They’re using states. They’re using educational institutions. They’re doing everything they can short of a national mandate to push this that they’re having such pushback, especially when they can’t answer the questions that you asked earlier: Why, if I’ve had this would I be vaccinated? Why should my kids who are at low risk be vaccinated? They don’t have good answers for those questions.

I think you know, they’ve just forgotten what the point of all of this is supposed to be. And we saw in France yesterday, France took a big step towards becoming the first western country, first big western country to have a quasi-mandate. They’re gonna make it very difficult for people who aren’t vaccinated to go out. You’re gonna have to get tested all the time. And I guarantee you that in the White House they’re watching that and watching to see what the reaction is gonna be, because they won’t acknowledge the mistakes they’ve made and they won’t acknowledge that the questions about these vaccines are real and legitimate.

CLAY: I got a good email the other day and I’m curious what you would say in response to this person Alex emailed me and said, “Hey, I’m gonna be a college freshman. I’ve already had covid, I have no issues at all with health, I had covid and it wasn’t a very significant issue.” This is the person who emailed me. They said, “My university is requiring that I get the covid vaccine. If I don’t get the covid vaccine and if I try to come up with a medical reason why I don’t want to do that, they’re going to require me to wear a mask, you know, sort of scarlet letter label me in some way in all my classrooms. ” And as the guy who is writing me, and I was, you know, who’s kind of like, “Look, I’m 18, I want to meet girls and, like, I want to have a normal college experience and I don’t want to be sitting in the classroom like, you know, this reprobate, the scarlet lettered mask wearer.”

What would you say? And it’s interesting question. I haven’t responded to him yet. But what would you say to people out there who are having to make decisions like these because of their institutions or their employers that, as Buck said, you’re sort of getting a back door government mandate because Fauci is encouraging all these universities and all these employers to fry and require it as a condition of going to school or working?

ALEX: I mean, I get the question a lot, too, and I’ve sort of been dodging it because I don’t have a good answer.

CLAY: Yeah.

ALEX: It looks like the lawsuits, you know, that are fighting vaccines on these quasi-mandates are not moving forward, they’re not winning. Actually, that’s one aspect I really want to do, is interview a lawyer to discuss, you know, why it is that these lawsuits — there was a big lawsuit in Houston — why it got tossed. And so right now it looks like employer’s — the courts are giving employers and schools discretion. Now, I actually think if you’re working you have a little bit more flexibility because the labor market is so tight right now and because so many adults of working age are not being vaccinated. But the schools, I mean, they’re sort of saying my way or the highway. And it’s very hard to know what to do. And I think a lot of students are just gonna, you know, cross their fingers, get vaccinated, and hope they don’t get myocarditis or so many other symptom. I mean, t’s hard for me to tell somebody who’s 18 to give up a year of schooling and hope things get better, especially because it does look like eventually these will get full approval. Now, the FDA’s been slow, and I think that’s very interesting. I think I do wonder if they’re pushing the companies for more data, about the boosters and long-term advocacy, I wonder if there’s some pushback happening inside the FDA, that we’re not seeing. But it is likely that fool approval is coming and then the pressure is gonna get even worse.

BUCK: Alex, do you think that we’re gonna be in a place where this coming winter there will be another — I mean, we already had California recently or at least Los Angeles County start to say, oh, unmask mandate indoors, we’ve heard about the Delta variant and then we’re ready for the Lambda variant and, you know, whatever comes after that in the Greek alphabet, we all know this is where this is going. Yeah. Do you think that we could be at a place in November, in December of this year where at least some states and some companies are saying, “We’re back in quasi-lockdown status”?

ALEX: You know, I hope not. The reason I think not is that if you look at the U.K. and actually Scotland which had a very strict lockdown policy for much of last year, they’ve kind of quietly thrown up their hands. So cases went way up in the last few weeks. You know, they had huge lockdown, they vaccinated many people as they could. As I have said from the beginning, virus gonna virus. Okay? So they have a big spike in cases. And they did not go back into lockdown. In fact, Britain is having what they are calling Freedom Day where every restriction is being dropped on July 19th. And I think it is possible that without admitting it, that, you know, the United States, I mean, we’ve pretty much led the way on that. So I think it’s hard to back people down again. I hope.

CLAY: Last question for you ’cause I do think this is gonna turn into a monster battle as we go forward. Mask wearing for kids in school, there is no scientific data whatsoever to support it. It is cosmetic theater of the absurd. I don’t know if you watched last night the Home Run Derby. To me this kind of was a great metaphor. The entire stadium is maskless, none of the players are wearing masks, none of the pitchers, none of that scenario. They got the kids who were trying to field home runs in the outfield, Alex, wearing masks in Denver.

This idea that New York City or LA or California and New York are gonna make kids wear masks is one of the most patently indefensible, from a scientific perspective, rulings that I’ve ever seen. Will there be protests against that stupidity or those parents gonna be so excited their kids are back in school, they won’t care?

ALEX: I think more the latter, and I don’t know how your kids feel about it, my kids don’t really care about the masks. They actually wear them sometimes on their own now. I tell them to take them off, right?

CLAY: Yeah.

ALEX: But they’ve gotten used to it. It’s sort of stupid. I don’t like it. But I’d much rather have them wear a useless mask than be forced to be vaccinated, if that’s the choice. And, you know, I think we’re gonna have to keep fighting. And, you know, it’s funny. I’ve been put in this position, it’s taken over my life the last year and a half, and it’s not going anywhere. And I feel — you know, I used to joke about this. It’s not a joke anymore. I’m like a class traitor, right? I went to Yale; I worked for the New York Times. But I’ve been you know, I’ve been sort of pushed into a position where a lot of people who I used to know won’t talk to me anymore. But you know, the data is what it is. And…

CLAY: Yeah.

ALEX: — we’re gonna have to keep telling people whether the like it or not.

CLAY: Check out Alex’s Substack, everybody. Alex Berenson, subscribe to it and you can pick up “Unreported Truths About Covid” on Amazon. Get ’em while you can. Alex, we both really appreciate your work on this. As you know, Clay and I have both had you on for over a year to tell the audience as much of the truth as we can actually get out there. So thank you for your work.

ALEX: It’s always a pleasure, guys. Thanks.

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