As most of you will be aware, during the Covid era corporate media became little more than megaphones for the Department of Health and lead the charge for longer, harder and faster lockdowns asking health officials not for evidence that lockdowns would stop the spread but rather enquiring as to when the next one would be.
They would more often than not put pressure on health officials and ministers when society was opened up again, wanting to know why it was reopened and when would it be locking down again.
When it comes to the corporate media and the permanent state in Northern Ireland little shocks us but it must be admitted that they always seem to find ways to do just that. This is one such example.
In this report, we will be laying out how the corporate media pressured the CMO and his spin doctor into taking a hostile position against an outspoken doctor. A doctor who came out of retirement to assist with the Covid response but who soon became concerned at attempts to pressure people into vaccination and the tactics employed as part of that coercion.
We will also show, using obtained emails under the Freedom of Information Act, how two journalists would put pressure on the Health and Social Care Board and the General Medical Council, and the CMO to cancel the doctor in question.
This story is as revealing as it is concerning as it evidences just how the corporate media lead the charge to cancel a doctor who was espousing a viewpoint they didn’t like or agree with, and rather than reach out to the doctor concerned for a comment or to ask her to explain herself, in other words, to carry out basic due diligence as journalists, they instead seemingly decided that she had to go and so set about making that happen.
This story is not about whether one agrees with Dr McCloskey or not. This story is about how the corporate media put pressure on the CMO and the HSCB to stop a doctor from practising. It’s about how a nationally disgraced CMO outsourced his statement writing to a person who previously worked on the state-funded BBC Nolan Show and who, according to the emails, was partial and biased in his writing. It’s a story of how the State and its tentacles in the media coalesce to keep order.
In an October 2021 article, Rob Marsh summarised Dr McCloskey’s position quite well. I have quoted part of his article below. I will add that she was one of the very few doctors that continued to see patients face to face during a time when to get an appointment with your GP you would have needed to be in a very bad way. Dr McCloskey realised the importance of face-to-face appointments with her patients and continued to offer them just that, against DoH diktats.
Dr Anne McCloskey a GP from Derry who came out of retirement at the beginning of the pandemic to assist with GP out-of-hours services. Dr McCloskey recorded a video which was shared across social media on the 22nd August 2021. The full nine minute video can be viewed here.
The claims made by Dr McCloskey regarding the pandemic do not fit with the standard narrative being pushed by the government and mainstream media.
Dr McCloskey claimed:
- She is treating very many sick, distressed, worried and traumatised people – most of which been double jabbed.
- Young people are being coerced, bribed, and bullied into getting the jab.
- Her out of hours service jammed with people who are doubled jabbed testing positive for covid.
- Seeing young people being damaged by the vaccines, including a healthy girl with an upper arm blood clot.
- The NHS is not overwhelmed, instead it is being dismantled.
- Covid vaccines are not improving the health and wellbeing of the community.
- Adverse reactions are being underreported to the MHRA’s yellow card scheme.
Because of the above video, the CMO Michael McBride insisted that she be removed from the list of practising doctors in Northern Ireland and investigated thereafter. His position was not just supported but taken further by two journalists.
On the 21st of August 2021, Dr McCloskey posted her video to Facebook which has since been removed but can still be viewed here.
Later that evening at 23:15, the disgraced CMO would email Margaret O’Brien, Head of the General Medical Services, insisting that if Dr McCloskey is still on the “HSCB performers list” he wanted her removed.
It escaped the leading doctor in Northern Ireland that he could have found that information out for himself in less than 30 seconds had he simply checked the publicly available list which can be found here.
Margaret would respond to McBride at 16:00 the following day, 22/8/21, informing him that she will do as he asked.
Four minutes later McBride thanks Margaret for her compliance.
At 18:25 that same evening, Jane Kennedy, Head of the General Medical Council in NI, replies to Margaret O’Brien informing her that Joanna Hayman, GMC Employment Liaison Officer, is covering for the Health and Social Care Board at present and will be in touch.
The next morning, 22/8/21, at 11:54, an Irish News journalist emailed the media department of the Health and Social Care Board having already spoken on the phone with Pamela Yeh, communications manager for the HSCB, who told the journalist to put their request in writing.
In the email, this journalist points to what they claim is “misinformation” from Dr McCloskey and demands to know why the HSCB employs someone who they also claim “is a high-profile anti-vaccination campaigner.” CJs understand this journalist to be Seanin Graham, now of the Irish Independent.
Twenty minutes after Seanín sent her email, a journalist from the Belfast Telegraph also emailed the HSCB press office with the same tone asking if Dr McCloskey is still employed, and if so why, and what are they going to do about her. CJs understands this journalist to be Amy Cochrane.
Palmela Yeh, whom you will recall is the HSCB Communications Manager, forwarded a “Draft Response” of the HSCB statement to Davy Gordon (CMO propagandist) and Karina Meredith (Head of Press Office for the Dept of Justice) on 23/8/21 at 16:58.
Minutes later, at 17:01, Gordon excitedly cc’s in the then “Health” Minister Robin Swann and his superior, the disgraced CMO Michael McBride, saying of this draft response:
“Good robust statement from HSCB”.
The then “Health” Minister responds at 17:03 displaying the depth of his character…
The following day, 24/8/21, at 14:01, Seanín Graham (then Irish News journalist) sent another email on Dr McCloskey but this time to David Gordon (CMO propagandist) requesting that the CMO personally intervene and come out publicly against McCloskey’s comments. She goes on to register her concern that some “patients” were actually “backing Dr McCloskey’s views” which she found to be “really concerning“.
Seanín adds that she was also trying to hold the Health and Social Care Board to account for keeping Dr McCloskey in employment. This is quite an alarming and telling email.
Just under two hours later at 15:44 Gordon emails McBride telling him that “there are good grounds for a strong statement from you.” as per Seanín’s request. Gordon goes on to tell the CMO what to say…
I welcome the investigation announced by the Health and Social Care Board. I was personally appalled by the contents of this video and professionally extremely concerned.
I know it has caused great distress to many members of the public and health care workers, who know the reality of the Covid threat and the importance of vaccination.
“The evidence on the effectiveness of the vaccines is irrefutable. On behalf of the health service, I would like to thank everyone who has come forward to get their jab and would urge others to do so without delay.”
Minutes after Gordon wrote McBride’s statement for him, Pamela Yeh of the HSCB would email Gordon, et al, with an “updated statement” on the HSCB response to the demands of Graham and Gordon (journalists) that McCloskey be held to account.
Gordon immediately emails the then “Health” Minister and the disgraced CMO with the HSCB statement.
Swann acknowledges Gordon at 16:10.
At 16:03 Pamela Yeh sends the statement to Graham and Gordon, respectively of the Irish News and Belfast Telegraph, when minutes later at 16:28 Graham tweets the following:
She follows this up 12 minutes later with quoted text from the above statement supplied to her by Yeh.
So we begin to see a picture taking shape. The Irish News via Seanin Graham grooms Gordon to pressure McBride into issuing a statement against Dr McCloskey. Gordon then not only does what Graham asks but goes further and writes the statement for McBride. This is an excellent example of how journalism and the state merge and evidences what we have been writing about for years now at CJs.
We also know that David Gordon’s written statement on behalf of the disgraced CMO was also forwarded to the journalists in question as can be seen from the Belfast Telegraph article penned by Cochrane and published on 24/8/21 and from an Irish News article published on 25/8/21 and written by Seanín Graham.
Seanín also tweeted re David Gordon’s written statement on behalf of McBride.
What this extraordinary story shows, in great detail, is that the corporate media in Northern Ireland worked in an enforcement capacity for the official narrative during the Covid era, a role that many times saw them being more authoritarian than the State they were actively supporting.
Journalists are supposed to act as a buffer between the State and the people. Their role is to hold power to account. But what we see here is how they acted with the State to quash dissent. We at CJs have long been writing about this morphing of the two. Graham and Cochrane handed us proof of that for the public record.
What is also alarming, and it’s something that should concern us all, is that we have a journalist who contacted the DoH propagandist, David Gordon, concerned that patients shared Dr McCloskey’s views and rather than her saying to herself, “Hold on, there might be something in this that needs investigating or maybe I should at least reach out to these patients to try and understand them” she instead decides to email Gordon and ask him to pressure the CMO to come out publicly against the Dr’s position and also contacted the HSCB to find out if they were still going to keep her employed.
McBride and GMC – A Tale they don’t want you hearing about
Michael McBride reported Dr Anne McCloskey to the GMC in August 2021 and requested that she be removed from the HSCB list of practising doctors for what he claimed was “…disinformation being promulgated by a member of the medical profession which are in my view not consistent with the standards and responsibilities of us as doctors as outlined within “Good Medical Practice.”
Four short months later – and at CJs we would have cause to report Michael to the GMC for the very same thing — not behaving in ways consistent with the standards and responsibilities of doctors as outlined within “Good Medical Practice.”
On the 9th December 2021, Northern Ireland’s Chief Medical Officer Michael McBride, on the BBC’s “The View” programme, would call on the public to “please respect me” as he told the BBC’s viewers how he would challenge people who were not wearing face masks “who clearly don’t have an underlying health problem but choose not to wear [one].”
Michael claimed that he challenges those not wearing masks who he thinks should be wearing one and therefore he broke each of the 5 guidelines outlined in “Good Medical Practice”.
Many people have hidden disabilities which means that they may be unable to wear a mask for reasons that aren’t obvious. Many others have been sexually abused or suffered domestic abuse and show no obvious signs of this abuse and may also feel they can’t wear masks. But somehow Michael believes he can determine who should and shouldn’t be wearing masks and, according to his public confession, he challenges them accordingly.
This sent many abuse survivors into a flurry of panic and we were inundated with emails, texts and DMs from concerned survivors and their families who feared that the CMO was, by his comments, approving of, and encouraging, members of the public to begin challenging non-mask wearers. We received several letters from abuse survivors some of who gave us permission to republish their words here and here.
Against this backdrop of public outcry, we decided to report Michael to the General Medical Council given the seriousness of what he was advocating and the dangers of his self-confessed behaviour towards those unfortunate members of the public that he said he was challenging.
The GMC would share our concern and publicly condemned his behaviour whilst also referring him to superiors for reprimand.
We do not support Dr McBride’s comments and recognise that he should appreciate not all disabilities are visible,
While we are taking no further action ourselves, we do feel it is very important that these concerns are brought to the attention of the doctor’s Responsible Officer. This will allow the issues to be discussed at his next Appraisal or Revalidation meeting. If the Responsible Officer has further concerns about the doctor that requires our consideration, he can be referred to us in line with agreed procedures.The GMC to CJs in response to our complaint re the CMO’s vigilantism
There can be doubting the significance of this condemnation from the GMC towards a Chief Medical Officer yet there was NO coverage of this decision in the media, NO condemnation from politicians, NO calls for him to be censored by the HSCB or anyone else for that matter. There wasn’t a whisper of this statement from any government outlet or from any of their media outlets. The plan was – say nothing and it’ll go away. As always, they got that wrong.
What the CMO was green-lighting was for abuse survivors and those with hidden disabilities to be harassed if they weren’t masked and whilst his behaviour was in breach of all 5 points of the “Good Medical Practice” guidelines, the entire cabal who went after Dr McCloskey claiming her remarks were dangerous all fell silent when it came to McBride. I guess abuse survivors and those with hidden disabilities don’t rate high enough on their list of people to be concerned about.
Whether one agrees with Dr McCloskey or not is something for each individual to decide for themselves. The point of this article is to reveal just how there was NO questioning of the official COVID narrative allowed and that the corporate media worked as enforcement officers for the State and the unelected medical bureaucrats. It also evidences that David Gordon writes statements for the CMO which are then printed verbatim in the corporate media as the CMO’s own words. Many of us knew this to be the case all along and at CJs, we have pointed it out many times. But this episode handed us verifiable proof that we could then present to the public to prove the case. This was very helpful Dave, thanks.
What is also worth noting is the double standards that the media, the CMO, the HSCB, the GMC and everyone else involved in the email chain above displayed when dealing with Dr Closkey. They each set out to see that she was humiliated and cancelled for her views. Yet when we at CJs revealed how a doctor in Northern Ireland used her position to lie to the public, with the very clear intention of coercing young people into taking Covid jabs, by claiming that her hospital was “full with young critically unwell, UNvaccinated COVID patients on ventilators…” when in fact there were NO patients on ventilators, of ANY age – instead of calling for this doctor to be cancelled and/or reprimanded, she was instead celebrated and her claims repeated all over the BBC.
CJs would complain to the BBC News NI team about their spreading of Keelan’s lies without verification or applying due diligence and rather than answer us they ignored us which stalled the progress of our complaint for over a year. We would then be supplied with an email address for someone at the BBC’s Editorial Complaints Unit (ECU) who when contacted agreed to deal with our complaints for us, the result of which was that the BBC ECU upheld our complaints and apologised for the behaviour of the BBC News NI and Nolan teams.
Not a single corporate media outlet covered our revelations even though the public had a right to know what we had exposed, especially the young whom Keelan was targetting. They had a right to know that COVID was not filling up the critical care units of hospitals, as she had claimed.
How many young people went on to take jabs they didn’t need after this doctor’s lies? And how of them may have had adverse reactions? The media don’t care and the CMO has no interest in finding out.
As Rob points out in his article, comparing the treatment of Keelan to that of McCloskey, the BBC’s William Crawley assembled a team of rancid Covidians and then invited Dr McCloskey onto his show in what was a clear hit job as he accused her of “misinformation” and lies. Ironically, during that interview, as Crawley was accusing Dr McMcCloskey of spreading misinformation he stated…
“It is terribly important that we don’t misinform people. You’re absolutely right.”
In a twist of fate for William, we at CJs have caught him, not just spreading misinformation or even disinformation, but spreading outright lies on his show. But again, this is another example of how these self-entitled types happily spread whatever lies they want, yet demand that others are cancelled if they deem that something they said was untrue.
As part of this report, we asked Dr McCloskey if either the Irish News or the Belfast Telegraph had contacted her from when she published the video to when she learned of being suspended and she told us:
“No. I was the last to know.I turned up for a shift at Western Urgent Care at 6pm on the Monday [23/8/21], and was told I couldn’t work. The Trust had my contact details, as had the media.”Dr Anne McCloskey to CJs
So as Seanín Graham and Amy Cochrane were trying to have Dr McCloskey cancelled, as they pressured the HSCB and the CMO, neither of them sought to contact the person they were going after.
This is the true face of journalism in 2023 in Northern Ireland and the role they have assigned themselves is as protectors of the narrative. We can also now verifiably confirm who writes the statements for the disgraced CMO (as he did for the ex-“Health” Minister) and just how much influence he has with the corporate media and the corporate media with him. It’s a big club folks – and we all aren’t in it. But we at CJs are keeping a lot of eyes on it.
We reached out to both Seanín Graham and Amy Cochrane for comment but at the time of publishing, we have not heard back from them. If and when we do we will update this article accordingly.
More to come…