Thanks for posting that; I missed it when it came out. Both authors are highly respected and I loved the article.
My advisor at Stanford, who I believe was the most influential earth scientist in history, used to say that anytime you have a panel of experts deciding what papers get accepted for publication, they are good at rejecting weak papers but infamously bad at accepting breakthrough papers.
Allan’s thesis was that continents had drifted during the earth’s past. Sir Harold Jeffreys’ lasting legacy was saying the idea was preposterous. Allan had to create his own journal to eventually prevail.
Dr. Fauci appears to have been slow to embrace masks for consumer use and since he has a stellar reputation worldwide, it seems to have carried the day in the U.S. for awhile. But Dr. Kim of South Korea respectfully disagreed in good faith in a YouTube that went viral, and the WHO and Dr. Fauci appeared to change their positions shortly thereafter.
The article used the term “in good faith.” That’s so critical, no? A company scientist may have powerful financial incentive to say tobacco isn’t bad for you.
What would happen in the age of Covid if a scientist or doctor were to say on Fox News that injecting disinfectants may be helpful? What do you do in that case? That happened with Hydroxychloroquine. In my view, that’s like yelling fire in a crowded theater.
Part of the problem with Hydroxychloroquine was that even those scientific people who suggested it early on were not suggesting it for the purpose that the politicians were touting.
Another problem was that it was being monopolized for an unproven usage so that it was unavailable for the purposes for which it has demonstrated usefulness.