“Naturally I prefer somebody who feels but doesn’t write, to someone who writes but doesn’t feel.” —Marina Tsvetaeva I was (and am again) a paid subscriber to one of the many writers I greatly admire (a subject that will expand)—Margaret Anna, of “Alice Through The Looking Glass.”
Thank you for broaching this subject. Berenson's anti-IVM stance is peculiar, given his admirable ability to call out the bogus and corrupt aspects of covidmania. But he does seem keenly sensitive to the Overton window, and may wish to offend both sides equally to try to appear neutral.
However, the more important issue is why are the people credited with protesting covid-pretext tyranny exclusively male? The other day some Chris M guy I'd never heard of claps himself on the back publicly for standing with Kirsch, Malone, McCullough.
It was Simone Gold MD, JD, now subjected to solitary confinement in jail for having been ushered into the Capitol building by Capitol police. She was one of the earliest to speak publicly about early treatments for COVID, founded Frontline Doctors. How about Drs. Stella Immanuel, Sherrie Tenpenny, Lee Merritt, myself, both of you, researcher Jessica Rose?
I am a bit disgruntled for having written the most thoroughly researched book to date on how early treatments for COVID work, and the most thoroughly researched book to date on the health hazards of the COVID vaccines. But then, . . . I haven't been one to jump to the microphones, so there is that well-traversed path to anonymity.
I dumped my (unpaid) Berenson subscription pretty quickly after setting It up, based on that shilling you mention and his anti-IVM stance.
Both of those things I found highly offensive.
Alex wants his old job back at the NY Times. 🙄
Thank you for your heartfelt words, Celia, and I am grateful for your bravery, kindness, commitment to truth, and friendship 🤗
Spot on. I dropped my Berenson subscription months ago, just after his book was released. One big issue (for me) was the denial of Ivermectin, of course. But if you look further, he really is a fan and uncritical supporter of western medicine and big pharma in general. He really is.
How he could dismiss the undeniable success of Ivermectin based on "studies" -- knowing fully well about the corruption with studies -- is something that I couldn't see my way around all by itself.
But further, he really believes that there are little, if any, problems associated with any vaccine or typical big pharma intervention. That is just not supported by facts, history, statistics, or even the actual product enclosures.
Then, when he continued (ad nauseum) to deride people that said otherwise, well, see ya later Alex!
Alex was the first substack I paid for. I even bought his book. I then saw him attack Dr Malone and attack ivermectin. I quickly cancelled my subscription and never finished reading his book. I realize him for the phony he is. Can’t understand why he would have so many paying subscriptions!
Berenson came to this party on Substack with advantages most don't have. He wrote for a big name media outlet and benefits from a conferred reputational credibility. Rightly or wrongly, I tend to the later.
His training and experience makes him a master manipulator of his audience. Linguistics, rhetoric, and the psychology of words are tools taught to pros in expensive schools by top practitioners of persuasive communications, i.e. propagandists. Who are skillful at connecting with an audience and gaining their confidence, roping them in and securing an agreement with them.
Just because he left the NYT doesn't mean he no longer uses all his experience and training and doesn't have the backing and support of powerful and deep-pocketed others he shares an agenda with. His path and rise is not yours, he's not the scrappy new writer on the block or older one who never held the king's ring.
Comparisons could never be fair. And only serve ego. Your only constructive comparison you can ever do in life is with yourself. Being the best you. Develop the best plan for your financial freedom that allows you to write in your authentic voice. Be rigorous and faithful, be flexible and creative, be strategic and be better than you were yesterday, always. Use your network, don't be afraid to brag on yourself, if you don't who will? But stay authentic to you, forget the other names you see having financial and reputational success you aspire to have. They've made negotiations you haven't. Many of which hardly make them better off than you in the grand scheme of life.
Envy is a deadly sin for a reason. Don't indulge it. You will have all you need for happiness and success in your career and life by walking your own path using your own talents and efforts guided by the higher source within you, honoring and giving glory to God for the gifts he has given you to be a warrior for truth that betters all of his creations.
I dumped my unpaid Berenson subscription, as well. As others have said, I found his "my way or the highway" approach very off-putting. Berenson comes off as unteachable, a 𝒄𝒉𝒂𝒓𝒂𝒄𝒕𝒆𝒓 trait I abhor. Buh-bye. 😊
I love the exchange, as it wonderfully illustrates something I've been pondering for a few years. Why is it that every single religion that comes along kills communion, by reducing it to the very most simplistic drivel, and in the worst cases, reduces it further to justifying horrible crimes against all life and all prospects of life on the planet? Why? Why do certain peeps go there, park their lives there, and ruin as many other lives as they can imagine how to do so? The philosophical question is less interesting to me than is the theological one; the theological one was addressed perhaps best by Buddha, Lao tse, Socrates (actually, the priestesses he quoted), Jesus, and Rumi, among many others. If there is any divine any thing, it is inside every one of us, every living spirit, and if we have anything to do with it, our task is to clean up our own inner being first, Of course, this isn't a room with a perfect view, so we must enter a practice of continually course-correcting our own habits, particularly our habits of mind, and more particularly our habits of spirit. Rumi's poem, The Guest House, perhaps puts this house-cleaning best:
Coleman Barks is, in my humble estimation, that poem's best caretaker while translating it into English.
Thank you, Celia, and Margaret Anna Alice for having elicited this little rhetorical trickle from my soul and stimulated dribbling it here.
Namaste', to you both and to all your readers & especially the commenters; it is, after all, the commenters who most cultivate the dialogue the posting artists have presented. It is these dialogues, after all, that seep out into the world, delivering the most salutary push-back against the wayward religious freaks.
You can’t agree with everyone on everything and at least the comments give an opportunity to raise issues. I think Alex has that je ne sais quoi for a few reasons which all add up to be je sais.
1. His NYT background. When he wrote ‘Tell Your Children,’ which I own and which is why I knew him in the pre-covidian age, he really did get blindsided by the pushback. I love how it was his wife, the psychiatrist who practices at a state hospital, who opened his eyes to the dangers of pot in such a nonchalant way, “Everybody knows...”
2. He got cancelled for ‘Tell Your Children.’ By the time covid rolled around, he had a rep for sticking to his guns and not putting up with the zeitgeist at the NYT. People on Team Reality love that and Team Reality needed people with big names and credentials.
3. He had an established Twitter following and he tweeted often and well. Gathering more followers.
4. His tweets were informative, challenged the narrative, had his “Former NYT writer” on his profile. That carried weight. He could be biting in his tweets, but used subtleties and humor.
5. He is in NYC suburbs and already knew A LOT of people. By that, I mean decision-makers and those connected to power in law and media.
6. He used his these connections, NYT background, etc, to get media hits. In turn, those in alternative media like podcasts and internet shows etc were also attracted to interviewing him and he took A LOT of these interviews. He knows how to do a media interview well.
7. While he may not see the light on HCQ or IVM, that, too, draws Team Reality in -- “Argh! He’s soooo close, we have to convince him!” Thus the Dr Kory debate. Which he obviously lost.
There’s more, like you noted HE ASKS for the support. But to get the $upport, he already had the cheerleading support. He’s also doing the Project Veritas strategy of dropping out the discovery of his legal case. He just dropped the White House emails, said he can’t do more now, but he will drop more soon I am sure.
Berenson is as zealous about Ivermectin as he is about cannabis and his professional jealousy for Dr Malone. Every time there is a mass shooting, Berenson screams to the rooftops, he smoked cannabis! Never mind the battery of anti-psychotics he might have been on, or the isolation, or the shitty upbringing, or that 50 million Americans who use cannabis do not perpetrate violence.
He jumped on the Together trial on Ivermectin like he was working for the NYT again, or NPR. Meanwhile a few dozen other substackers dismantled that designed-to-fail trial with ease.
He also looks half the time like he doesn't sleep, which can create psychosis. So maybe that's part of the attraction, his psychotic zealotry? There seems to be a lot of support for that in America. Less support for those of us writers less inclined toward the rabid.
Celia , what you do is so unique that I’m officially subscribing now..hadn’t to this point.
An amazing mixture of solid information done is sort of poetic way.
I also follow Mr Berenson. He does provide good data but has no heart . And he doesn’t care.
I don't really know who Alex Berenson is. I looked up his post on Long, long, long covid which linked to a post by ezugyppius; a plague chronicle which I followed for awhile (never paid), who set up this statement 'Nobody disputes that some nontrivial number of people suffer chronic sequelae from SARS-2 infection' which I obviously couldn't reply to, as I'd don't pay, but I really really wanted to stick up my hand and say 'me me me" I dispute that people have SARS-2 infections at all , there is no evidence"- I wouldn't use a posh word like sequelae, but they can't have them to what they didn't have.
I think in order to drum up the money you have to set up annoying, controversial or plain silly statements that people will pay to reply to. This is the model of phone in talk shows exemplified by Jeremy Vine 'Should smokers be allowed treatment' etc obviously now 'should the unvax' blar blar blar.
Ive dropped all who continue to promote the virus 🦠 hoax. I love Alfa Vedic, Sol Luckman, Tom Cowan, Andy Kaufman, Alec Zeck, Drs. Bailey, Dawn Lester, David Parker, and more who have their minds open to truth.
Celia…you were one of the first people I subscribed (a paid subscription) to on Substack. I believe I found you through Mark Crispin Miller (who I found through an interview he did with RFK Jr. and then I signed up for his email list). I also am a paid subscriber to MAA! I love you both and though your ‘writings’ are quite different they always have something to ponder and consider, though from different perspectives.
I also subscribed to Mr. Berenson’s Substack (free subscription) at the same time as I did you.
I did it first because of his name and so called ‘status’. I was never really impressed with what he had to say, many times just giving a ‘regurgitation’ of what others had already talked about. I was given his book ‘Pandemia’ for a Christmas gift. I read the first two chapters and felt it was a ho hum accounting of what we have gone through these past two years and never finished the book. (I ended it donating to my local thrift store!) I have become more disenchanted with what he talks about, especially after his ‘settlement’ with Twitter. From my POV Mr. Berenson is about Mr. Berenson and few others. So I will be ‘un-subscribing’ from his Substack in the not too distant future.
Keep sharing your musings, both interior and exterior…I so enjoy them. And I think Spain may be a good fit for you. Te amo Las Puertas de España!
Well, you gotta love MAA. She was one of my original 'stacks, and she's still fighting the fight. Clever writer, with no backup in her.
As @ColleenHuberNMD comments below, there are many women writers who have contributed so much. How is it they (y'all) aren't more read?
When I think back to how my 'stack inbox became what it is, I discover that the ones I have kept over time are these very ones. Originally, I paid for all the usuals--Berenson, Taibbi, Greenwald, etc, but I found that I was only too happy to eliminate them after a few months. The ones that I've kept are the ones that I found on my own, mostly from reading and contributing in the comments sections of various 'stacks. That's how I found MAA (she's really good at promoting her thoughts that way) and also because when I commented, these writers took the time to comment back, or at least acknowledge that I exist. Also, if a writer I sub to also subs to another writer, I often check them out, too. Which is how I found CF.
I've cancelled more than a few 'stacks. Some because I found that I was using up hours a day just reading and commenting, some like Berenson and Bari Weiss because they were just trying to be with the cool kids again, some because they wrote the same thing over and over.
Substack is best at creating community, but for a writer, I think it must be nearly impossible to make it pay. I notice some of my favs are using it as a lever or springboard to other paying venues, so it may be helpful that way. I'm guessing it must be similar to my small farm. I love it, I slave over it, I wouldn't do anything else, but I better have a different source of income to make it pay.