CNN and other jerks irresponsibility twist Sen. Johnson's mouthwash coronavirus statement.

Sen. Ron Johnson (C-Span)

The death of journalism, again. How many times can journalism die?

Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) was recorded recommending steps everyone should take to stay healthy during the pandemic, including using mouthwash that can kill the coronavirus.

CNN and other anti-journalists jumped all over him, accusing him of claiming, if not by implication then outright lying, that mouthwash can cure Covid-19.

Decide for yourself. Here’s the recording provided by Rolling Stone. Do you hear him claiming that it will kill Covid-19?

Back up: When speaking of “coronavirus,” you’re talking about a group of viruses and not specifically or exclusively about Covid-19 (SARS-CoV-2), according to Johns Hopkins Medicine. Johnson said coronavirus, not Covid-19.

Even if Johnson was claiming that mouthwash was an effective therapeutic to fight early stage Covid-19 (which he was not), he still was absolutely right about it killing coronavirus.

Here I refer to “Use of an antiviral mouthwash as a barrier measure in the SARS-CoV-2 transmission in adults with asymptomatic to mild COVID-19: a multicentre, randomized, double-blind controlled trial,” as described by the National Library of Medicine.

To quote at length:

Objectives: To determine if commercially available mouthwash with β-cyclodextrin and citrox (bioflavonoids) (CDCM) could decrease the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) salivary viral load.

Methods: In this randomized controlled trial, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) PCR-positive patients aged 18-85 years with asymptomatic to mild coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) symptoms for <8 days were recruited. A total of 176 eligible patients were randomly assigned (1:1) to CDCM or placebo. Three rinses daily were performed for 7 days. Saliva sampling was performed on day 1 at 09.00 (T1), 13.00 (T2) and 18.00 (T3). On the following 6 days, one sample was taken at 15.00. Quantitative RT-PCR was used to detect SARS-CoV-2.

Results: The intention-to-treat analysis demonstrated that, over the course of 1 day, CDCM was significantly more effective than placebo 4 hours after the first dose (p 0.036), with a median percentage (log10 copies/mL) decrease T1-T2 of -12.58% (IQR -29.55% to -0.16%). The second dose maintained the low median value for the CDCM (3.08 log10 copies/mL; IQR 0-4.19), compared with placebo (3.31 log10 copies/mL; IQR 1.18-4.75). At day 7, there was still a greater median percentage (log10 copies/mL) decrease in salivary viral load over time in the CDCM group (-58.62%; IQR -100% to -34.36%) compared with the placebo group (-50.62%; IQR -100% to -27.66%). These results were confirmed by the per-protocol analysis.

Conclusions: This trial supports the relevance of using CDCM on day 1 (4 hours after the initial dose) to reduce the SARS-CoV-2 viral load in saliva. For long-term effect (7 days), CDMC appears to provide a modest benefit compared with placebo in reducing viral load in saliva.

To put it in laymen’s terms: Johnson was correct. The rest of you journalism poseurs are wrong.

Johnson cited this study and CNN mentioned it, but skipped over the substance, like what does it matter?

Here’s how this crap gets spread under the guise of journalism: Listerine, the mouthwash company, was manipulated to respond to a claim that Johnson did not make.

Notice the slight of hand. The question poses an incorrect fact: that Johnson said that mouthwash is a “legit alternative to vaccines & kills the covid19 virus.” Johnson made no such claim, but Listerine answered the question as posed. Now Listerine’s response is being picked up and spread across Big Media and social media to supposedly show Johnson as a liar or a jerk. For example, here is Salon: “Listerine says no to Sen. Ron Johnson: Mouthwash won’t prevent COVID.”

The jerks march on:

And much, much more.

Where are my old school journalism colleagues who–at one time I suppose–would not tolerate this? The reporters I sat with at the revered Chicago Daily News and at the Chicago Sun-Times? Where are the city desk and copy desk editors who would toss this crap back at the reporter with the admonition to do real journalism? Where are the news editors and senior editors who once took pride in their newspaper’s important role in a democracy as the Fourth Estate?

“They’ve gone to graveyards every one.”

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Comments

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  • Senator Ron Johnson is a Wisconsin clone of Donald Trump. Touting a mouthwash to deal with a virus that is primarily inhaled is in itself untenable. By the way, I couldn't get the audio you included as proof that Johnson did not say mouthwash killed the virus. Would you be so kind as to quote Johnson's actual words verbatim? The rest of the country seems to think he did say it did.

  • In reply to Aquinas wired:

    The rest of the Blue country thinks he said it. Those who actually pay attention do not. I'm sure you could crank up your search engine of choice and find Johnson's actual quote, but you won't.

    It's well known that mouthwash will kill certain coronaviruses and bacteria when gargled. That's the science. Follow the science.

  • In reply to Aquinas wired:

    Mr. Wired:
    In case you haven't heard, Republicans aren't the only "lawmakers" who say pretty dumb things, although Dennis is correct here re: Johnson's saying his remarks were taken out of context. But I digress. Let's talk about AOC's recent statement that there's no truth to the reports about retailers being robbed of their merchandise by the low-life punks trashing their stores in many major cities. Mr. Wired? Hello?

  • The question is not how many times can journalism die, but how to resurrect it.

  • Do we have the reaction to "Fredo" Cuomo's wife and her bleach baths?

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