The set(s) of Morning Joe took aim at Fox News’ medical experts and strongly suggested that booking Dr. Oz and Dr. Phil were irresponsibly offering quackery over sound advice.
In the past 24 hours, the two television doctors made curious comments about the incidence of coronavirus in the context of balancing the public health risk presented by the spread of Covid-19 and the urgent desire to reopen a suddenly cratered economy. Dr. Oz cited an article that stated that reopening schools would only lead to an increase in 2 to 3% mortality rate, which was widely interpreted in a manner that Oz later explained was not intended in a follow-up apology video. And Dr. Phil made the nakedly specious more people “die from automobile accidents” claim.
Co-host Joe Scarborough mocked the ostensibly pro-Trump medical experts, saying “The party of life is suddenly fine with very high mortality rate. I guess it’s getting in the way of, you know — taking care of people’s health is getting in the way of the bottom line.”
But it was Willie Geist who made the point clearer. “The problem is, they have huge followings. Dr. Oz and Dr. Phil both have shows with millions of viewers,” he started. “Fox News, those programs, obviously, are very highly rated. Millions of viewers. So when those prominent doctors go on TV and say these things, a lot of people listen. That’s reflected, by the way, in polling, that shows who is taking this seriously and who is not.”
“That’s why we try to have on this show and bring to our audience actual doctors who specialize in this stuff,” drawing a comparison to the doctors who appear on Fox News. “Public health experts and officials, epidemiologists, who know exactly what they’re talking about, and are not there to play to an audience. They’re not there for TV ratings.”
Watch above via MSNBC.
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