COVID-19: The System (2020) Movie Script

Camera is running.
I started my search
after Prime Minister Rutte's speech...
about herd immunity and what's going on
around coronavirus.
Between mid-March and now,
which is September...
I've spent about 1,000 hours myself
researching the coronavirus problem.
And many others with me, so overall
we've done about 5,000 hours of research.
It was all about risk: who's going to
get sick and who's going to die?
In business you always work with risk...
so the first thing I looked at was:
What are the facts here?
How many people will die
and how many will fall victim...
to COVID-19?
Good evening.
Our country has been gripped
by coronavirus.
Ours and the rest of the world. My message
to you tonight isn't an easy one.
The reality is that in the coming time
a large part of the Dutch population...
will be infected with the virus.
What on earth's going on here?
We're also interested
in the number of people...
whose immunity shows signs...
that it has been in contact
with the new coronavirus.
You can see that represented here
for the Sanquin Research data.
It's also being done
for the RIVM's PIENTER Study.
Why is the RIVM national public health
institute telling us half-truths?
It's just half-science.
I don't understand,
it's not right.
I'm a citizen and I want very much
to trust the government.
I want to believe that what I read in
the media is correct and isn't censored.
But when they tell so many lies and
half-truths, what am I supposed to think?
Why pursue this policy when
there are many more non-COVID victims...
than COVID victims?
Is this really about our public health?
Clearly the pharmaceutical industry's
business model is to make profit.
As much profit as possible.
It's got nothing to do with healthcare.
If it did, they would have made sure
to produce good medicines.
The new products they've put
on the market are generally poison.
Nothing more.
If you look closely
at the characteristics of the virus...
the measures taken and consequences are
out of proportion with the virus itself.
This is certainly a time full of danger,
fear, change and transition.
The virus triggered this,
but the consequences are much greater.
That's what we need to look at.
They're drastic.
When people talk about COVID-19
it's positioned more or less as an enemy.
At first when we didn't know
what was coming, they said:
This is war.
We have to fight it, eliminate it.
I thought: Hm, what is this virus?
I didn't know either.
Viruses play a key role in nature.
If you look at the timeline...
viruses and bacteria have been around
far longer than homo sapiens.
Looking at how we're built,
in terms of our immune system...
it becomes clear how incredibly well
they work together.
In nature it's all about collaboration:
between cells, bacteria, viruses.
Yes, collaboration
is one of the key processes in nature.
That collaboration arose
in the process of evolution.
Apparently it was a better way of
organising than the other options we had.
How do you see the timeline?
Other organisms are much older.
Now humans are here. I sometimes feel
that we want to be at the top...
and to be able to engineer humankind.
You see it with the virus,
'We're going to wipe it out.'
Is that even possible?
-If we really want to, it's possible.
It's hard with a virus. It's much easier
to wipe out pandas or rhinos or tigers.
Viruses are so closely linked to us
that they keep adapting and evolving.
The flu virus is a good example.
For the flu jabs we have now...
we have to guess what flu virus is coming
but it's often quite different.
After so many centuries
we still can't predict what it will do.
Viruses are often too fast for us.
Viruses survive because they mutate.
That's why it's so hard to develop
a vaccine or medicine or a treatment.
You don't know which direction it will go.
You see that with flu vaccines.
You think: Hey, it works.
But next time, it's changed again.
It's great, a really big container
has arrived from India. So...
Sports bags again?
-Well, it was a very big one.
Today? No.
As part of the citizens' initiative
I wanted to find out all I could about it.
This is the coronavirus bench
where we collected everything...
to quickly find out all we could
about coronavirus and what's going on.
I'd already read a lot of books.
Especially about scientific knowledge
from the past ten years...
in a very broad sense.
Everyone knows Yuval Harari.
If you look at this, this was how
it all started. The panic about control.
After a while you saw that the collateral
damage was much worse. The hospitals...
talked about 300,000 procedures
that had been postponed.
And it caused huge financial difficulties
for hospitals.
You could see in one article
that on the one hand...
we were trying to save life years
by getting coronavirus under control...
while on the other hand the scales were
tipping too far in a very negative way.
Economically, but also for healthcare
and for society.
Because this is derailing.
I'm not against... I'm not an anti-vaxxer,
I'm not on the left or right politically.
I have no interest in this,
no financial interest, not at all.
I was looking primarily
at my children's future.
If you build up lots of debt
you know someone will have to pay.
I thought: This isn't going to work.
-I'll go move the car.
I liked it at first when I started.
Do you want something to eat?
Ultimately, the government
is supposed to be there for society.
The government can say:
We've got all these support measures.
But we'll have to repay it all.
In the end the citizens and business
owners will have to pay for it in taxes.
Hey Feline, do you know Wim or not?
This is Feline.
I got this from you, Erwin.
As an international entrepreneur...
I thought that a lot of the things
Rutte said were a bit strange.
It's the collated file, Wim.
-It's quite a file.
It's the first time I've seen it.
That doesn't make sense,
certainly not for a business.
I got stuck into it and after a while
I had all kinds of information.
We were talking on the phone...
and I thought: Wait a minute.
My brother knows a lot about this too.
He started telling me things.
We're brothers
and talk to each other regularly...
but I didn't know that he knew
such a huge amount about this subject.
His field of study
and everything he's done...
is related to coronavirus
because he also did SARS-CoV-1.
We had so much common ground.
We really spent hours on the phone...
talking about it and how we saw things
and, above all, the questions we had.
It was funny really
because the crisis started...
and at first everything's new.
For me, for Rutte, for everyone.
It came in and we all wondered:
How bad is this and what's happening?
It was certainly presented
as something that could be very serious.
Then he started that citizens' initiative
and told me all about that.
I went looking for publications.
I have a scientific background...
so I don't want to know all the stuff
on the internet and things like that.
I know that half of it is unreliable.
No, I look in scientific articles.
What's been published?
What do we know? What's been written?
As Nico said earlier
it started with SARS...
which had emerged once before
in the past, in 2003.
Those kinds of articles were published
quite long ago, at that time.
I looked back to see
what we already knew about it back then.
And how did it relate to this new SARS?
This one is called SARS-CoV-2...
because it's the second. The first didn't
have a number then, but now it's SARS-1.
I studied that in depth,
also so that I could answer questions...
especially about immunity.
What does it mean?
And indeed, in the story...
they really talked at first exclusively
about immunoglobulin.
Immunity as it is measured in the blood,
the way that Sanquin presented it too.
That astonished me, because it's one
element of immunity that you can measure.
But there's much more.
The immune system is wide-ranging.
There are T-cells too, as he said.
But there's also a first defence response
that can make a big difference.
So you want to know
how all the pieces fit into the picture.
When the Outbreak Management was set up...
I was surprised that they spoke
very little about public health.
It was all about virologists. That makes
sense because it's a virus, I get that.
But public health
is about much more than just a virus.
There's much more
to ensuring we're healthy.
There are the lifestyle diseases
and so on.
The other strange thing
was the social and economic side.
As an entrepreneur I knew that
what was said would have a big impact.
That wasn't mentioned. Then it transpired
that the other experts weren't in the OMT.
That was so strange.
That's when I started searching
for information myself.
Eventually we were doing research
with 20 scientists in four countries.
It was great, we got so much information.
Everyone had their own task.
We had data scientists,
people looking at economics...
accountants, there were doctors
among the scientists, and econometrists.
It was amazing. In just eight weeks we
got a clear picture of what was going on.
The big question for me was:
What actually happens?
What does the virus do to the body?
You got me on the right track at once:
Nico, it's an overreaction.
It's not so easy to explain.
There are various different aspects
of the immune system you have to look at.
It's like he said:
There were events everywhere...
such as in Italy in Vo'
and on the cruise ships...
where infections were recorded but
not very many people fell seriously ill.
That indicated that there must be
some kind of natural defence.
Interestingly, there are full scientific
reports on the events in Vo' in Italy...
so that's my source. I take little notice
of what's on the internet or the news.
I look at the publications.
Reading that, you find out
that everyone in that village...
after the first serious incidence there...
which led to the death
of one of the inhabitants...
the whole village was locked down
and they tested everyone...
to find out: Who has and has not tested
positive? What symptoms do they have?
And who is infecting whom?
They studied that and reported on it.
They found that 50 percent of people had
no symptoms or no detectable symptoms.
And although people seemed to be
passing it on to each other...
in the sense that
they got a positive result in a test...
there were no serious consequences.
That indicates that there must be
some kind of natural protection.
So you go looking for other articles.
More and more of them appeared, even
in the early phase around April and May.
We wrote in this document that
various articles confirmed back then...
that the T-cells play a huge role.
They cause a kind of cross-reaction...
that originates
in previous coronavirus infections.
Because there are a large number of these
viruses that are all slightly different.
That's what the immunity is built on.
The T-cell recognises parts of the
coronavirus, according to the article.
That means that other people
who have never seen the new variant...
can still demonstrate defence,
based on that.
That turned out to be 40 to 60 percent,
based on T-cells.
It was interesting that on the news
only immunoglobulin was mentioned...
which is made by B-cells
that are measured in the blood.
That appeared in only five to ten percent
of the cases in Brabant...
which was a fairly large
infection hotspot.
Interestingly, I thought,
it later turned out...
fragments had been published
but then the Swedish article appeared...
by the famous Karolinska Institute
in Stockholm.
They measured everything:
The T-cell and the B-cell response
with immunoglobulin, etcetera.
That brought everything together.
They said that the B-cell immunoglobulin
that people always talk about...
was present only to a limited degree,
or even absent.
But the T-cell responses were present
to a certain degree.
Up to around 40 to 60 percent.
This again points to the conclusion...
that there is a natural resistance
to coronaviruses.
That also explains
why a lot of people may test positive...
but don't have any symptoms at all.
That was the basic picture,
which to me meant:
This is essentially
almost a classic immunity...
built up against viruses,
the kind we see all the time.
The whole world
pursued more or less the same policy.
There were two reasons for this.
First, the WHO.
There's a lot of pharma money in the WHO,
so they're not impartial.
The same happened in 2009.
They decide what the status of a virus is.
Back then they classified swine flu
as Pandemic A: life-threatening.
It proved not to be, but many vaccines
were produced and they were all sold.
There was uproar about that,
because in hindsight it was all wrong.
That wasn't how things were. It was
just pharma money pulling the strings.
We don't seem to have learned anything,
as it's happening again now.
The strange thing is that
the rules for that have been adapted.
Looking back,
as our citizens' initiative shows...
the WHO doesn't want social distancing
and lockdowns.
It's in a publication from 2019.
That's not the way to go.
But they changed it nonetheless.
Very odd.
They decide the policy for 193 countries.
The panic and copying each other
is all a part of that too.
There was great panic in Italy,
in Bergamo.
Then India said: Let's do the same
as Italy, that must be the best thing.
Meanwhile the same policy was laid down
for 193 countries around the world.
In the end we tried to present this story
to politicians.
Because we knew that Sweden
was doing very well at the time.
Focus on looking after vulnerable groups,
they're the ones that need it.
We couldn't get through to politicians.
We really tried,
with all the party spokespeople.
We tried through Feike Sijbesma
and Barbara Baarsma. No response.
We tried the newspapers, the media.
They won't publish it.
There's a message from NRC: Dear
Mr Sloot, thank you for your submission.
We get many articles on this topic
and must select stringently.
Your contribution
is not eligible for publication.
They decided that fast. Apparently
herd immunity isn't very important.
That's that, then.
There was huge pressure on Intensive
Care, and care workers did an amazing job.
That was in the first three weeks.
Then it became clear what was going on.
Rutte said: With 50% of the facts
I have to make 100% of the decisions.
That's fair enough.
But as a businessman I'd say that means...
you need to get hold of the information
as soon as possible.
Strangely, it was clear after those three
weeks who the high-risk groups were:
Elderly people with an illness were the
ones who fell ill and were hospitalised.
And a very big group of healthy people,
the economic workforce...
really weren't very much affected.
Some were, but far fewer
than victims of road accidents.
The strange thing is that Rutte told us
we all had to go into lockdown.
I didn't understand that. I thought: Why
don't the people who need protecting...
who are also going into lockdown,
get fully protected...
and why not let the ones who are barely
affected keep the economy going?
With a few measures that may help,
of course.
It was also strange that the experts
in the OMT and the RIVM...
were mainly virologists.
I didn't understand that.
After all those IC weeks, it was clear
this was about more than public health.
And it's only a small part
of public health.
If you look at lifestyle and road traffic
there are many more things
that affect public health.
It was odd that we didn't look
at the social and economic aspects too.
Because imposing lockdowns like this
has quite an impact on your economy.
Why aren't these experts being consulted?
We'd been writing to the House
of Representatives for months...
and getting no answer.
But one hashtag from celebrities with lots
of followers gets everyone interested.
The media want to talk to the celebrities
but not about anything of substance.
They want the sensationalism
but not the content.
If they do want content
they get two opposing camps together...
so you can never
get beneath the surface on TV.
There's no scientific debate
on those kinds of programmes.
I find that difficult.
It's quite a fine line to tread.
I'm worried and above all
I feel I've reached my moral limits...
in the way we're treating public health
and humanity at the moment.
It seems to me that
we're in one big behavioural experiment.
And that we're damaging people.
It's not clear what the added value is
of the actions taken recently.
It's hard not to say what I think,
given the oath I have taken as a doctor.
That's why I have said what I think,
firstly to the medical associations.
That's not getting any real results.
Doctors are quite media-shy and think
we should resolve things among ourselves.
What is that?
-My hospital responded well at first.
They said there's room for differing
opinions in a scientific debate.
It's important in science to doubt and
ask questions. So there's scope for that.
I see that in other hospitals too.
The other side of it is that hospitals
often have several different interests.
And my opinion
isn't necessarily the hospital's opinion.
So the hospital is very cautious
and has warned me too:
Be aware that given your position
and place of work...
even if you say you're speaking as an
individual, people won't always see that.
You see it in the media too, they often
do start referring to the hospital.
This is my view, not my hospital's view.
I'm glad to be able to speak my mind.
But it's actually weird to say:
I'm glad I can speak my mind.
We have freedom of speech and should
be able to talk about it much more freely.
I know that some people
are afraid to speak up.
Or are afraid about their job
or their colleagues' opinions...
or to be out on their own.
-When did you first think that?
Because Rutte said from the start
that it's a dangerous virus.
At what point did you think: Hm.
I'm not sure if that's what it really is.
It's a new virus, much more infectious
and many people are getting sick.
It can be a very nasty illness
and we have to provide much more care.
So our care capacity during the epidemic
and during the peaks...
and maybe again in the coming period,
is insufficient.
It's the norm for us
to have undercapacity.
But there is a consequence...
in terms of what government policy
has been over the past years.
In fact the flu virus in 2017 to 2018
was similar. Lots of people in hospital.
But now
the focus is mainly on IC capacity.
That made sense in the first three weeks.
After that, it was okay.
But the focus now is still on healthcare.
The problem is bedside care.
Massive cuts have been made there.
And in nursing care. There's debate
about salaries, overtime and breaks.
That's a problem around healthcare
and how it's financed.
It's a stalemate.
We're in a healthcare crisis...
and that's magnified by coronavirus.
We've had good plans in place
for pandemics for decades.
Given current population growth,
a pandemic was to be expected.
We have assumed for years
that this would happen at some point.
On the other hand,
we've been downscaling beds for years.
We have far fewer beds than five to eight
years ago and fewer bedside staff.
That's led to extra problems now.
Is that why they're sticking to all these
measures? To keep things under control?
Until there's a vaccine?
I hope not,
as that would be a very bad reason.
That makes the patient and the doctor
part of the product in the...
In the system.
-In the system. In the business model.
We can't allow that
to be an underlying drive.
It should never be the reason
behind any measures taken.
I hope people continue to see that
purely based on the facts.
And that it's taken into account,
because money makes you blind.
We need to be very critical.
We need to look carefully at the links
people have with money flows...
and the decisions they take.
It's essential to keep that unbiased.
But there's more to this.
The research by PIENTER and Sanquin
always said there's grave danger.
As Rutte and Feike Sijbesma said:
95 percent of people have no defence.
Because Sanquin's study said only
5 percent have antibodies, B-cells.
But we know for a fact,
as Robbert Dijkgraaf said...
and it's clear from the asymptomatic
cases that there is herd immunity.
Together with my brother
I wanted to publish that story...
that science has proved
there is herd immunity.
It's strange that in all this time
the RIVM, PIENTER and Sanquin...
have not once mentioned T-cells.
Now all of a sudden...
Feike Sijbesma, I asked him: As a medical
biologist you must know about T-cells?
He said: Nico, T-cells are very important
in all this. So I asked:
You're close to the cabinet,
why don't you tell them?
He said:
I have no say in the politics of it.
A week later in the newspapers and on TV
he was still telling the same story:
Only 5 percent are protected by B-cells.
I thought: Feike, how can that be?
The crazy thing was
that the newspaper said...
that the T-cells need to be jump-started
by the vaccine.
I thought: This is too much. So it's not
important if we have natural T-cells...
but if we make a vaccine it has to
encourage the T-cells to become active.
I'm at a complete loss.
But there's more, because Feike Sijbesma
struck a deal with AstraZeneca.
Then it starts to make sense.
First it's a private deal...
between four European countries
and AstraZeneca to produce the vaccines.
Then it turns out that Feike's brother
is the CEO in Germany.
When that hits the news the coronavirus
special envoy suddenly has to go.
Feike Sijbesma leaves the stage.
And AstraZeneca suddenly says:
Yes, but we're doing the deal for the EU.
So instead of being a deal for just
four countries, it's for the whole EU.
At the same time, the media announces
that hopes of herd immunity are fading.
And Feike tells the press the whole of the
Netherlands will need to be vaccinated.
Like Bill Gates, who says: The whole world
will need to be vaccinated.
But why?
Feike says it's about the purchase price,
he bought it cheaply.
But I'm an international entrepreneur
and it's a well-known fact...
that the pharmaceutical industry makes
three times as much profit as any other.
Feike can't tell me, a businessman, that
it's suddenly a philanthropic institution.
That because they're making a vaccine
for public health they're more or less...
doing it at cost price, for free?
No, it's just a second business model.
That model is real...
as we now know that AstraZeneca
made the deal not just with Europe...
but with Brazil too. And with Korea. And
with China. And with the United States.
They've already sold
three billion worth of vaccines.
Welcome to AstraZeneca.
All our lines our busy at the moment.
We'll be with you as soon as possible.
-Good afternoon, Nico Sloot speaking.
I have a question about COVID-19.
Do you have a special spokesperson
for that or is it Communications?
Sir, you can send an email
It's a pharmaceutical company.
-Send the question by email...
I'm just the receptionist.
You can't get through.
They're not having it.
The prevailing influenza
is caused by a so-called ultravirus.
A tiny bacteria
one ten thousandth of a millimetre across.
The Institute for Preventive Medicine
and Leiden University's virus labs...
collect research material
using liquid air...
made at the Kamerlingh Onnes lab and with
a temperature of 180 degrees below zero.
This plane has not brought
a celebrity to Schiphol Airport...
but an eagerly-awaited, important cargo:
A large shipment of Salk vaccine
to combat infantile paralysis.
Looking at pharma,
do you see that it's a business model?
That health is a business model?
-Yes, it's obvious.
The pharmaceutical industry
makes an enormous profit on its products.
If that benefited people's health,
you'd say: Fair enough, who cares.
But there are increasing signs
that medicines play a key role...
in the falling life expectancy
in the United States...
and stagnating life expectancy
in the European Union.
We've seen big scandals around Vioxx,
Rofecoxib, a simple painkiller.
The medication for diabetes:
rosiglitazone, Avandia.
Countless medications have cost hundreds
of thousands of people their lives.
It just keeps on going. You would think
that after all of those tragedies...
the rules would be tightened. They're not,
in fact they're being relaxed.
So pharma is a great business model.
I've seen that in recent years
it has had the highest returns.
They're at 17.5 percent. I know that
the average is five or six percent.
So they earn three times as much. Is it
because of their powerful monopoly?
Is it due to patents? Exclusive rights?
Is that why?
It's largely due to patents.
But there are a number of big players
that dominate the market.
They've made agreements
with the registration authorities...
about the requirements they have to meet.
These days, the European Medicines
Agency or EMA in Amsterdam...
the Food and Drug Administration or FDA
in America...
say very clearly on their websites
that they want to help manufacturers...
to bring their product onto the market.
That's a very strange situation.
You would expect organisations like this
to put the citizens first.
To only approve medicines
that have been proven to work...
and that have
the fewest possible side effects.
What do politicians do? Edith Schippers
said, when she was Minister of Health:
This can't go on, the monopoly and
power of the pharmaceutical companies.
Has anything changed in politics,
in your opinion?
No. As regards Schippers, she said
one thing and did the exact opposite.
So that didn't get us anywhere.
I'm compelled to conclude...
that there's almost no expertise in this
subject in the House of Representatives.
The same applies
to the European Parliament...
and the leaders of the Ministry
of Health, Welfare and Sport.
So the manufacturers
get almost no pushback.
And that's serious. Very serious.
How do you see that in relation to
coronavirus, the problem we're facing now?
There's a strong focus on the vaccine
now. I'll say more about that in a moment.
And again on a virus inhibitor,
which was given provisional approval
for a few months in the EU.
It's based on extremely bad research that
really doesn't support any conclusions.
It's produced
by a company called Gilead...
the company that also put sofosbuvir,
for the treatment of Hepatitis C
on the market.
Production costs: 150 euros. A course
of treatment costs 80,000 euros.
Those are the kinds of companies
and people we're dealing with.
If you look at our overreaction, say.
We've seen
that COVID-19 causes a reaction...
mostly in people
with weaker immune systems.
Worldwide the people who die
have an average age of 80, 80.5...
with a lot of underlying conditions.
Is that comparable with a bad case of flu?
It is, in fact. The people who die in
yearly flu outbreaks are mainly elderly...
with comorbidity,
in other words other illnesses...
and who use other medicines,
or comedication.
That has been the case with flu for years.
The people who die
are mainly residents of nursing homes.
And it's the same with this illness,
this coronavirus pandemic.
Given that, how do you view AstraZeneca?
What struck me in our research...
was that all the cards had already been
dealt. Feike Sijbesma made a deal...
with his brother, it turned out.
Four countries, then the EU.
Now many countries have joined in and
three billion vaccines have been sold.
Is that not comparable?
AstraZeneca is a company
like so many others, actually...
like GlaxoSmithKline, that are
regularly linked to serious fraud...
especially scientific fraud.
There are some ongoing cases, right?
Another thing I noticed
during my research...
is that these pharmaceutical companies
have an incredible marketing apparatus.
In the Netherlands and worldwide.
Their representatives visit doctors.
Can you say something about that?
They're very good at it.
Yes. The pharmaceutical industry
is extremely powerful.
They have a lot of power and money
and because of that...
they're able to promote and market
their new treatments very effectively.
And it works. It really works.
Otherwise they wouldn't keep doing it.
Doctors are susceptible to marketing.
Often they don't have expert knowledge,
they can't assess the research...
and they rely on what they're told
by medical sales representatives...
and medical opinion leaders.
-And can they earn more?
Is there a business model
for the intermediaries?
Yes. In fact when I was still practising
I was told by the medical sales reps...
that they were assessed on
whether the number of prescriptions...
of their new drug increased
in their region.
Yes, yes.
As well as that
there are doctors, specialists...
who are instructed or employed
by the pharmaceutical industry...
medical opinion leaders or MOLs...
who are actively engaged
in prescribing the new medications...
and to market them.
That works well.
It works well in politics, as there are
no experts at the Ministry of Health...
or the House of Representatives.
So they can do as they please.
The only people who play a significant
role in this are the patients.
They're the ones you have to reach
and I see it as my task...
to inform people as much and as fully
as possible about medications.
How come there is no accountability,
no product liability for pharma...
and they can make decisions
together in secret?
Why are we being advised
by Feike Sijbesma...
and Bill Gates that the world,
our whole country needs vaccinations.
Surely we don't need vaccinations
but a solution to the coronavirus problem?
The problem is the overreaction
in people with low immunity.
The average age of those
who have died is 80.5 worldwide.
Aren't they the ones we need to protect?
The solution
is to have the right medication for them.
So I would say:
Take the time to find a safe vaccine.
Surely we won't use a pressure-cooker
situation and business models...
to quickly produce a vaccine for the whole
of the Netherlands, for healthy people?
I don't get it, it's not right.
I'm going to call Feike Sijbesma now.
We've been in touch for quite a time.
Hey Feike, good morning. It's Nico.
Feike doesn't want to call on camera.
He later emailed the following:
Coronavirus has had a huge effect
on the lives...
of the young, working, vulnerable
and elderly, on all of us.
We all want to return
to the life and freedoms we're used to.
Tests, treatments and vaccines
can help.
The EU is working for all 27 member
states to obtain treatments and vaccines.
These must be effective and safe,
with fully transparent information.
Their use must of course be voluntary,
individually decided and not obligatory.
Good afternoon, NRC media, Thomas
Scholten speaking. How can I help you?
Hello Thomas, I'm Nico Sloot.
I subscribe to your newspaper.
I want to ask a question
about an article you published in July.
Is that possible?
-You can always ask.
I saw an article you published in July
by Feike Sijbesma about coronavirus.
There were some surprising things in it...
that I couldn't imagine Feike Sijbesma,
as the coronavirus envoy, would say.
I spoke to Feike Sijbesma about it...
and it turns out that he did not say
the things you wrote in the article.
I'd like very much to write to the people
who wrote it but perhaps you can tell me.
Why did you go ahead
and publish it like this?
If he says, 'I didn't say that', then I
believe him. I've no reason to doubt it.
I'll see if I can talk to someone
in the ranks and get it changed...
or at least discussed.
-Okay. Thomas, thanks very much.
It was a pleasure, good luck. Bye.
Over the past months the media
have headed in a very specific direction.
We're being told news
in a very one-sided way.
And I think the media have a pretty
big role given the situation we're in.
And that they have a lot of influence
on how people feel at the moment.
Take the Pieter Klok interview
in De Volkskrant newspaper.
I was so astonished.
I couldn't believe what the man said.
If you're the editor-in-chief of a major
Dutch newspaper and you say:
Due to the pandemic and the government's
position, I'm siding with them.
That's just state television,
you're a state newspaper.
In a crisis, especially,
you should check what's going on:
Is what the RIVM says true? The statistics
about the deaths have now proved false.
We need a parliamentary inquiry
right away. This was Radio 1:
With so much fear around
we need to speak with one voice.
You think so?
Isn't there a journalistic duty
to look at the consequences of policy?
You don't just swallow everything whole.
That's the right expression.
Not usually, but when society is so afraid
we need to agree with each other...
and not magnify differences,
as happened yesterday.
You can't expect everyone
to make up their own minds...
by getting all these virologists
to talk at them.
But what should the media do
if the virologists don't all agree?
It's wise for a country to choose
one path and for us to support it.
We all know that there's a lot
we don't know.
So whichever path is chosen there will
be room for criticism. That's just a fact.
But should you magnify the criticism
or simply support the chosen path?
They sow a policy of fear and say:
We're all scared, so just do as we say.
That's basically what he said.
It's bizarre.
Welmoed speaking.
-Hello, Welmoed. This is Nico Sloot.
I have a question for you as a journalist.
What I've noticed since COVID-19...
just as a citizen and a father,
reading the newspapers and on TV...
is that they're mainly telling a one-sided
story. That's what I see in the media.
So much so, that I really do think
as a citizen that they're being censored.
What's your experience of that
as a journalist in the COVID-19 period?
I think that...
because people
know nothing about the subject...
people in general
and journalists in particular...
find it difficult, outside the...
to talk outside the scope
of the government line.
Because if you have no knowledge
about the subject...
it's easy to mess up
by saying something that's not right.
It's safer
to stick to the government line.
Come on in. What would you do
if you were the prime minister?
Look at the media, they should
be critical, that's their job.
But they're the helpers.
Is that not a bit strange?
That's what is so disappointing.
It's now very clear...
we no longer have critical media,
even in our own country.
I'm shocked, as a citizen.
I didn't think it would go that far.
I'm from the generation of journalists
who worked in the 60s.
It was a great time for journalism.
We were highly critical and troublesome.
We made life very hard for politicians.
When I watch those two
at their press conferences...
during the questions I think: Why don't
you ask a critical question for once?
Why not do the research
and ask probing questions?
To my mind, and we made
a bit of game out of this in the 60s...
if you interviewed a politician
in the evening after a news show...
you rather hoped
he would feel a little sick all day.
Because he'd be thinking: I don't know
what might happen this evening.
What they might ask,
Joop van Tijn and the other fellows.
They did their research so thoroughly...
I don't think Hugo de Jonge had diarrhoea
before any of the press conferences.
But he should have.
A touch of nervousness...
Because we...
That's the next turn that the story takes:
We, the vast majority, the ordinary
citizens, are not represented.
There's no lobby for us.
-No. Society needs its own lobby.
That's very important, otherwise
everything will go to the other lobbies.
But we don't have one.
That's the nice thing about the term
'media': it suggests intermediation.
To my mind it's a nice system:
There's reality.
That's more or less complicated.
It's often less complicated than we think.
So that's there. Then there's us,
all busy with our work, our families...
our careers.
-The end of the month and off we go again.
So life is difficult enough
for a lot of people.
You also want to know what's going on
in the world, for when you vote...
and to join in the chat at the pub.
You need intermediaries for that,
and the intermediaries are the media.
The quality of a democracy depends a lot
on the quality of the intermediaries.
They need to be well-informed people
who have in-depth knowledge...
and who can say: But Prime Minister,
I remember that in March 1982...
your predecessor
formulated it very differently.
Someone who has really done the research
and asks critical, probing questions.
That has disappeared.
How can the media
be so fully on the side of the RIVM?
We've heard Pieter Klok's story.
He simply says:
I only report the government's story...
because we're in a pandemic,
there's a lot going on.
But it seems to me that the media should
be especially critical during a crisis.
They should be asking
whether we are making the right decisions.
But when they tell so many lies and
half-truths, what am I supposed to think?
To my mind, there's always a triangle:
It consists of the cartels,
clearly defined and with a clear agenda...
and the political decision-makers,
and the helpers.
Political decision-makers are supposed to
represent the public interest.
But that's not how the game plays out.
Politicians work best in the grey zone...
so that they can say, 'I didn't have all
the facts', like Rutte said at the start.
'We know 50 percent.'
-That was nonsense.
From early January he knew far more
than he ever cared to admit.
I think that for a politician that's the
best way to navigate, in shades of grey.
You can keep your options open.
That's one factor. The other
is the lack of rational thinking.
We always assumed that in politics
and economics, for example...
the decisions made are rational. But
most political decisions are irrational.
That's because we, as human beings,
have a limited ability to act rationally.
So every time the cabinet made an appeal
to people's rationality:
'Please understand
that you need to wash your hands.'
It was a highly rational approach.
But if psychology is right...
and humans have
what is known as a bounded rationality...
then it's entirely the wrong approach.
But that works out well for politicians.
Can they keep that up, Cees?
Citizens are better informed now.
There's a lot of know-how in society,
more than in the cabinet itself.
So as you said, it sounds
as if they're talking to pre-schoolers.
That's how it came across to me.
And it was all about fear, fear, fear.
I know that if I run my business
through fear it won't work.
The same goes for my family
and for schools.
As far as I know,
only regimes do that. Dictators.
So it seemed very strange.
But still that is what happened.
It's understandable
given the third leg of the triangle.
Cartels have the biggest interest,
politicians muddle along.
And then there are the helpers,
the assistants.
Those are the think-tanks, the lobbyists.
Politics is driven mainly by lobbyists.
There's huge pressure on politicians.
That's why it's such a corrupt game.
All the stakeholders except the public
know how to exert influence on them.
And the key helpers in this case
especially have been the media.
Helpers are needed
because decisions are made...
not in the interests of the vast majority
but of the small minority.
They give a justification.
Ultimately, taking into account
everything that's going on here...
you might wonder:
is this really about public health?
It's wonderful
to be able to help your children grow.
You can only do it if they accept it,
if they're okay with it.
It's great to work together so much.
I see my father as hard-working,
and always busy, always on the go.
Here, Max. They came in here.
More headlights.
-I've got some more.
Let's see if they look good.
-Yes. Nice, right?
Let's look at the production
of the pistons and cylinders there.
I'll put this one back and open that one.
I was at home and I got a phone call from
my father. He said: I don't feel well.
Can you pick me up?
I said: Sure.
Looking back, I drove there very fast.
I couldn't explain it at the time,
but I had a feeling...
I got there very quickly.
When I got there I saw my father. He felt
very unwell and went to the bathroom.
I thought: If he's feeling bad
maybe going to the bathroom will help.
Maybe he ate something that disagreed
with him. Let's see how it goes.
I got to the bathroom and thought: This
is bad, I have to make sure I don't faint.
When he got back
I could see he was in a really bad way.
And that it was much worse
than just something like a stomach upset.
He could see that too.
I asked if I should call an ambulance.
So we did that as fast as possible,
and it came.
All the energy drained out of me.
I thought: This is it.
For a moment I thought:
I can't believe that my son...
is going to see me slip away here.
It just can't be.
It turned out he was having a heart
attack. So the ambulance took him away.
I drove as fast as I could
to the hospital.
When I got to the cardiac ward
my father was just coming through.
They were taking him to the operating
room. It was scary to see that.
It shocked me, of course.
I could only hope that he would be okay.
But I was sure he would.
Two days later I was told the results.
A quarter of my heart had died off.
But I had so much energy the next day that
I immediately flicked the mental switch.
I thought: One quarter isn't okay,
but three quarters are okay.
And I feel fine
so everything will be fine.
Business is good,
we have a great management team.
The nice thing is that it works
because you've set it up based on trust.
That linked in well
with what happened around coronavirus.
Politicians should trust society,
the way we do:
I trust my team
and I trust our people's autonomy.
They know what they need to do,
they like working that way.
That's how you achieve success.
But strangely, the government
did the opposite: No trust, no autonomy...
restricting freedom.
You see how important it is. Even if you
drop out, everything carries on as usual.
That was the main thing
about the coronavirus story.
I thought: Surely young people aren't
being locked down, losing their freedom...
people aren't amassing debt
when there's no need?
I understand exactly what he's saying.
I know he's very motivated
and I'm glad he's doing it for us...
and for society.
I have a lot of respect for that.
It's fantastic
that my family is giving me the scope...
to share what we all know with society,
to tell people about it.
To say:
Guys, there's another way.
Why is it our policy
that the only hope is a vaccine?
In that case
there are other powers at play.
So tell me, what do you think, Ad?
What I think, very simply,
I see it very pragmatically:
As long as we have
this financial system...
things will not be okay for us.
I think the coronavirus
is just one part...
of an action
that has now been set in motion...
that really just
pulls the strings tighter...
from the position of those
who are in power at the moment...
and who want to retain that power
whatever the cost...
and who have certain ideas
about what to do with that power.
Who have a vision of humanity
and the future of humanity...
which they want to bring about in reality.
A few people
are going to determine our future...
effectively taking away
our right to self-determination.
Effectively leading us towards a goal
set by them with no regard for us.
So our autonomy...
-Coronavirus is being used for that.
Here in the Netherlands,
about ten percent at most...
own 75 percent
of everything there is to own.
And that will increase even more sharply,
with what is going on now.
By now it might be five percent
who own 75 percent.
That process is accelerating now
as small businesses go under...
and the self-employed go under.
All that's left are the big players.
This is...
nine thousand billion,
if every 50-euro note...
represents 50 billion,
this is nine thousand billion euros.
What are we doing here?
Let's go to the banking crisis first.
In the banking crisis we built up
a 50-billion debt, roughly speaking.
We had to cut costs for eight years
to get that back in order.
In those eight years we also made cuts
in Intensive Care and healthcare...
from 2,200 beds in 2015 to 1,100 beds.
They say healthcare is having problems.
We caused that ourselves,
as we had to cut costs...
because the banks, the financial sector,
had earned an awful lot of money.
Moving ahead a step to 2020...
with all the measures we're taking...
we're heading towards one hundred billion
in debt.
I understand that with a bit of a fight...
two, three, four, five, six, seven.
Seven times.
We have 750 euros. 750 billion,
I should say. I'll just put that here.
It was created as the European fund
for the coronavirus. 750 billion.
The remainder...
is the money that has been earned
by the group you're talking about.
PriceWaterhouseCoopers says: This
money is owned by the financial sector...
and by the corporate states, by people
like Bill Gates and Elon Musk.
There's no democracy,
no supervision there.
It's not about the money they earn.
Because one billion more or less
doesn't make any difference at that level.
It's about it being sucked away from us.
I want to demonstrate that.
Because if you look at this...
You know this too, Ad.
-Literally sucked away.
It's totally parasitic.
-It's incredible.
Looking at
this 750-billion European fund...
we fought with Italy, the European
states are squabbling about it.
If you look at the debt we're amassing...
for that 50 billion,
society will have to...
It makes me angry because it's about
how money is distributed in the world.
We have complex tax systems
and allowances to share it out fairly...
but there's nothing fair about it.
And that 50-billion debt we had...
meant eight years of hard work. By whom?
Citizens and SMEs, they're the ones...
I'm one of them, an entrepreneur.
We're doing well so I pay top rate taxes.
I don't mind that
because if I pay taxes...
it pays for infrastructure, healthcare,
police, we can pay them a good salary.
I pay it as a citizen
and SME business owner.
But these guys pay almost no taxes.
They have the power to avoid taxes.
They pay no tax at all.
-They pay no tax.
So small businesses and citizens
work hard for eight years...
The basis of this system, as I said,
is that tax is paid for the people.
And the people pay.
We've been given as security
for the repayment of the debt.
And now with the coronavirus
we're taking on a debt of 100 billion.
So for sixteen years, small businesses
and citizens will have to work for that.
I want to leave behind
the idea that the state looks after us.
The state has no money.
We do that.
The state's money is our tax money.
When they say
the government will help to pay...
for any claims that may arise
from the vaccinations...
the coronavirus vaccinations...
There's now a guarantee
that the government will pay the claims.
It's our money.
So we're paying for any claims.
And that means...
that the pharmaceutical industry
is fully exempt.
Finance Minister Prof. Lieftinck
requests your attention.
this newsreel is intended...
to better acquaint you
with pressing points of government policy.
Pay close attention to the images
and think about them again at home.
Government business is your business.
The measures that must unavoidably
be taken for our country to recover...
include the long-expected currency
reform, much desired by the government.
So to sum up:
For this pile of money no tax is paid
but there's no product liability either.
Most of this money is going to biotech
and pharmaceutical companies.
Since the swine flu in 2009 they've been
earning more than any other industry.
Yes, but again, it's not about that. They
already have a colossal amount of money.
You simply can't imagine how much money
is available at the highest level.
It's not about that.
-It's about the distribution.
It's about it not being distributed.
It's actually about the real economy
being bled dry.
If you look at the purchasing power
of the average person in recent years...
it has decreased dramatically. Why?
Because wages are barely rising...
benefits are barely rising, pensions
aren't rising, they've been frozen.
But costs are going up. Housing costs,
energy costs. Healthcare costs.
It's all going up and up and up.
So the pressure on citizens
is growing and growing...
and the means to live a reasonable life
under that pressure...
are constantly shrinking. There must
already be an awful lot of households...
that can only afford the bare necessities.
Anything beyond that
they can't do any more.
The people with political power
don't have that problem.
For now, they still get enough out of the
tax trough to afford a good lifestyle.
So they don't understand the problem,
or don't want to, or ignore it.
More and more Dutch people
are facing severe problems.
And not just in the Netherlands,
elsewhere, too.
And it's been deliberately orchestrated...
so they can impose their will
through money.
Here's the money and the power.
Correct me if I'm wrong, Ad:
Suppose that like us...
I have companies in Belgium and France...
and we all have about the same tax rates.
On average I pay about 50 percent tax.
In the other countries too.
If we made these people over here
pay taxes, which should be the norm.
I'm not talking about past taxes
they never paid.
But if we make them pay half worldwide,
that's this much.
So if we say, 'You have to pay tax like
everyone else', and we distribute this...
nobody would have money problems.
There's no need.
Basically with half of this they could
pay off all the coronavirus debt.
All of it. If that money were freed up
we'd have no more poverty in the world.
That poverty is deliberately maintained.
It is maintained based on the fact
that we have a system...
in which self-interest
and greed and power-seeking...
are rewarded, facilitated. I don't see
the people in those positions...
who are so incredibly rich,
with a few exceptions...
voluntarily giving up that position.
It's not even about the money.
It's purely about the position of power.
Because power corrupts
and a lot of power corrupts massively.
This is fascinating to see, Ad.
Because as you say...
I've only looked at the eight months
in the coronavirus period.
That means in thirty years
this group has earned a lot of money.
Calculate it over three centuries.
You're going even further back.
-You're showing a simple example...
of how it adds up in a short time. If you
take that back three centuries or more...
which is the period
that these practices have been possible...
it's easy to conclude
that there are a few people...
who have so much
that it's possible to imagine.
The difference between rich and poor
keeps growing, in the Netherlands too.
This study looked at 2,000 billionaires...
especially those who run biotech,
data and pharmaceuticals.
Bill Gates and so on, as we said.
It's interesting to see, like you said,
it's been going on much longer.
So we need to break this pattern.
Then there would be no problem with debt
and we could also...
But not within this system.
-Then how, Ad? What's your view?
We need to get rid of this system.
This financial system took shape...
over three centuries ago.
It was set up
in the interests of the ruling class.
It was set up as a system
to make money available...
for the kings and the nobility so that
they could finance their operations...
and finance their lifestyle.
It was never actually meant
for the people.
The people were the ones
who had to pay off the debts...
incurred by the king and the nobility.
We need to get out of this system
and move to a different one.
Because the system we're in now
is simply not good for us.
It's a destructive financial system.
I think
people should do their own research...
and make the link
between what we've discussed now...
about money and power and positions
of power and what's done with them...
and the effect that has
in society and in politics.
We're on our way to see Bob.
He's a strategist.
He focuses mainly on the age
we're currently in, on capitalism.
And the fact that we're transitioning
to biotech and data technology.
Lots of people aren't really aware of it
but past history too has shown...
that when you move into a new age
a power vacuum of sorts occurs.
We're going to talk about that.
It's interesting...
because the power that is in place
wants to hold on to that.
That is what's going on,
if you look at how capitalism...
is making way
for biotech and data technology.
So we need a new system and we need
to move to a new social structure.
Many digital technologies
make it possible to create a new society.
We're in the intermediate zone, the vacuum
between the industrial age behind us...
and the digital age we've moved into.
We're figuring out how to do things
and what the new rules should be.
We keep repeating old rules.
Really we should start afresh...
and think about how to make a new society
with these new factors.
The factors are technology, capital,
a lot of data.
There are different factors at play
so you need to make a new society.
The platform you talked about is based
on technology and digitalisation...
but it's still primarily
about making money, the shareholders.
They're really skyrocketing.
We can see all around us
that these are very big companies...
earning so much money that it's more
than individual countries earn.
Who controls that? I believe
you have called them corporate states.
Yes, corporate states.
At the end of the industrial age
and the start of the digital age...
capitalism continued, that's how
the new technologies were built.
The really big tech companies are so big,
they're becoming so powerful...
they're more powerful than countries.
For a very long time
our society was set up in such a way...
that rules were made
by society, politicians, countries.
They made laws, and businesses
had to adapt to the laws to operate there.
That only works if countries
are more powerful than companies.
I call them 'corporate states' because
they're bigger and more powerful...
than most countries. Countries
like the Netherlands, Belgium or France...
have become relatively too small to hold
their own against those big companies.
Corporate states behave like states.
They have their own rules and conditions.
They decide where to go, whether to pay
tax. They're deciding more and more.
And countries have to adapt to what
corporate states see as their interests.
Those are still partly capitalist.
We have to realise that a lot of things
are going to become uncertain.
A lot will change, and the virus
is actually the least of the problems.
We're in transition and the politics of
the old age doesn't work in the new age.
Major players are making use of this
period to safeguard their interests.
There is polarisation and tension in
society, it's not one big civic movement.
If we want to get through this
to a new period and get out of the fear...
we need to decide to do it together,
to help each other...
and overcome our differences
and create a better society.
If we don't take that decision to create
a better society, to unite citizens...
we'll create scope for parties that
want to exploit the uncertain period...
and the tensions that arise.
It's up to citizens to decide to step up,
to unite so we can make something good.
If not, there are powerful forces
at work...
that will take the opportunity
to exploit things.
That's the crossroads we are at.
We must make that choice,
not let others make it for us.
There has to be inequality in society
so that people work for a better life.
That's what is known as
'just right inequality'.
But too much inequality
creates discontent.
We've seen that happen several times
in the past few centuries.
That led to the First World War,
discontent about too much inequality.
The best example may be
the Storming of the Bastille.
At the time, the French king
had a very extravagant lifestyle.
He cared about nothing and life
got worse and worse for the citizens.
He behaved increasingly badly. Then the
very popular finance minister was fired.
That led to the people's revolt
and the Storming of the Bastille.
So when the inequality between
rich and poor becomes too great...
a countermovement emerges
in civil society.
That can play out smoothly
or become a revolution.
The way things are distributed now
it's starting to head in that direction.
The gap between rich and poor is growing.
A few families
own a large part of the whole.
A few companies hold the most power.
Then there are all the masses
with little power and little money.
The gap becomes ever greater,
the rich become richer.
That gives rise to unrest and tensions.
You can feel it happening in society.
The Italians are deeply worried.
In spring the government promised money
to people who were forced to stay at home.
Only part of the money was paid out.
A lot got lost in Italian bureaucracy.
So a lot of people
never received any money.
Hundreds of thousands of them are still
waiting for unemployment benefits...
from the spring,
from June, July, some even from May.
About 20,000 people
have received nothing at all yet.
So they are facing
serious financial problems.
That's why people are obeying the rules
less in the second wave.
They're more afraid about their financial
situation than the virus itself.
There are demonstrations
almost every day at the moment.
They often get out of hand
because people are desperate.
They think: I've got nothing to lose.
I have to work or I won't earn anything.
The Italian benefit system
isn't as well developed...
as for example in the Netherlands
and Germany.
That means that people who don't work
have no income...
and often have serious financial problems,
they're even going hungry.
There are stories that in cities
like Naples, and Palermo in Sicily...
people are going hungry
because they have no money.
That's making this second wave
different from the first wave in January.
People are more concerned about their
financial situation than the virus itself.
The ice boat
is far faster than the summer boat...
from the mainland
to the island of Marken.
There has recently even been a service
from Monnickendam to the island.
Outside the harbour the ice boat glides
swiftly over the smooth Gouwzee.
It's not a busy route.
Within half an hour
the island is in sight.
The connection was good until
the thaw started. Then it all changed.
Marken became isolated, as transport
was impossible on the weak ice.
The ice broke up. The strong westerly
wind drove the ice up onto the dyke...
as far as the houses.
Some jetties were crushed.
There was a risk that in a flu epidemic
help would be unable to reach Marken.
So Dr Pasdeloup, the local doctor,
asked the inhabitants to get vaccinated.
They responded to the request
in large numbers.
Dr Pasdeloup's surgery
had never been so busy.
One by one, hundreds of islanders
aged twelve and up came for the injection.
There are two scenarios or different
kinds of society we're moving towards:
In one society, the one percent
gain even more power and money.
It is the elite, the one percent,
who like in feudal times are the masters.
That's an elite society. The ordinary
citizens have to fend for themselves.
That's one scenario. In the other
scenario, and history has shown this...
in other cases like the extravagant king,
a social countermovement emerges.
You see it happening, entrepreneurs
and citizens creating a countermovement.
There are bottom-up citizens' groups
in the Netherlands who've had enough.
They want more of a civil society.
So our society has two movements:
The elite side and the civil side.
The question is: Who will win?
I don't know that, of course.
But they are two models
taking shape side by side.
In the past, whenever the group
of citizens, the movement, grew too big...
a real force emerged.
Because ultimately the civil majority...
will always beat a small elite...
even if they have access to key
technologies, money and so on...
it's very likely the citizens will win.
So I think that in the coming years,
first some tensions will arise...
between the two models, elite and civil,
and of course polarisation doesn't help...
That will happen too.
-Yes, polarisation in the civil movement.
As a result it's not strong enough to act
or provide opposition.
They're not really united.
And there are some people
who want to keep it that way.
But if we can create a civil movement...
that says: We don't want this. We want to
get back to what matters. To friendship...
being close, having fun, having parties,
normal human things.
If we all agree that we want to go back
to a humane society...
that movement can provide opposition.
The good news in all this is that
the technology we're talking about...
digital technology, biotech,
a number of technological developments...
the platforms you mentioned, blockchains,
artificial intelligence...
they can make the elite more powerful
but they can also empower the citizens.
The technology is neutral,
it depends on how we use it.
We can use technology to create
a decentralised, local economy.
With solar panels and wind
we can generate our own energy.
We don't need companies for that,
local societies can do it together.
There are robots to make strawberries
and tomatoes.
You can automate
vegetable and fruit production.
We're developing cultured meat,
all kinds of technologies...
that make it possible
for local communities...
to function
without the need for the big companies.
The question is: Will it go that way?
Or will our generations have to work
even harder due to the coronavirus debt?
We have to change the economic model.
That's the old industrial model.
You work, get paid, provide a service.
Wellbeing is financed by that model.
That industrial model will be replaced
by a whole new economic model...
in which we're less dependent
on those kinds of parties.
In times like that there's always someone
who thinks: Hah!
There's a vacuum, people are confused.
And they try to use that for their own
gain, to get power or money.
Things often go wrong then. It's a
pattern but it has never succeeded yet.
In the past
companies were located in a country.
The big issues and companies
are no longer in a country.
It's all global.
-The world is their playing field.
And many big issues are global issues.
They used to be national issues.
The climate is a global issue.
The Netherlands can't solve it.
Healthcare is a global issue. More and
more issues now cross over borders...
onto the world stage. But there's
no democracy on the world stage.
The big companies aren't democracies.
Nongovernmental organisations...
act as the public bodies looking after
the environment, health and education.
But they're not democracies either.
Then there are a number
of big global investors, as you said.
And a number of global charities. In my
view, what most of them are doing is good.
Like Greenpeace,
whatever you may think of them.
You may not agree with them but they
really believe in what they're doing.
That's how most of those
organisations are. But not all of them.
Loosen the right side.
What really astonished me
is that the scientists...
who didn't have an interest in pharma
didn't get to speak...
although they had a strong story, the
same as ours. That goes for doctors too.
It's always tricky for doctors,
it's hard for them to speak up.
I've seen in this research
that the people who made the decisions...
and that wasn't 193 countries,
it was a few people in the WHO...
and some important virologists
around important politicians:
Mr Drosten, a virologist
who invented the PCR test.
He has shares in his own company
so he has a strong interest in this.
Fauci too has a big interest in pharma
in America.
Ferguson in England and Ab Osterhaus
in the Netherlands have a big interest.
I don't understand why, when we seek
advice about public health, our health...
these are the kinds of people that
are chosen to tell us what we should do.
If you scare people enough,
they can't think straight.
This experiment in fear
has been going on for seven months now.
It will be a big problem
trying to reverse that in due course.
It's not going to be easy.
If we'd acted on what we found out
at the end of April...
we would have incurred under a third
of the debt we have now. Maybe even less.
We'd have had fewer deaths too.
We'd have protected care homes right
away, where most deaths occurred.
They're doing it again in this second
wave: fear, panic, a kind of experiment.
Just because the ray of hope is a vaccine.
That's the cause of all the trouble.
During our research
an article came in from The Lancet.
The Lancet
is a leading scientific journal.
In it, they drew the same conclusion
that we drew:
That it's a syndemic.
Of course, that needs a bit of explaining.
A syndemic means that you have
two conditions at the same time.
In this case we had the virus, of course:
It turned out that in addition...
the people who were vulnerable
all had underlying conditions.
We know now what they are. They can be
cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes.
So mainly lifestyle diseases
and mainly related to obesity.
If you have both those things
at the same time it's called a syndemic.
In some cases they can exacerbate each
other. And that's when the problems start.
So what we're dealing with is a syndemic.
Research has shown
that 98 percent of people...
are unaffected or barely. It's really
about the 2 percent that are vulnerable.
We must do all we can to protect them.
But for the rest? It's now clear
that all the measures were unnecessary.
We wasted so much money
and it simply wasn't necessary.
We must stop this right now
and get back to normal.