Martin Kulldorff

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Kulldorff in 2021
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Martin Kulldorff (1962–) is a fringe epidemiologist and biostatistician crank from Lund, Sweden who claims he was fired from his professorship of 20 years at Harvard UniversityWikipedia for his co-authorship of the pseudo-scientific COVID denialist Great Barrington Declaration.[1][2] He has subsequently found work as senior scientific director for the declaration's "spiritual child" the Brownstone Institute[3] and as a founding fellow of the Academy for Science and Freedom at the Christian far-right Hillsdale College.[4]

Pandemic shenanigans[edit]

In October 2020, Kulldorff co-authored the highly controversial Great Barrington Declaration, with colleagues Jay BhattacharyaWikipedia and Sunetra Gupta,Wikipedia calling for the promotion of herd immunity through infection by lifting all restrictions on lower-risk groups whilst shielding the more vulnerable before vaccines rolled out. The declaration, which was sponsored by Koch-funded libertarian think tank the American Institute for Economic ResearchWikipedia (AIER) and published as an open letter, was roundly rejected by scientific and political consensus, with one of Kulldorff's Harvard colleagues apparently equating it with exorcism to expel demons.[1][2]

Kulldorff's promotional tour for the declaration included an ill-advised appearance on the October 6, 2020, episode of The Richie Allan Show,Wikipedia a radio program with links to the far right that has featured Holocaust deniers and antisemites, although Kulldorff claims to have been unaware of its reputation and does not seem to share such beliefs.[5]

During the pandemic Kulldorff offered sage council to such famously well-informed policy makers as President Donald Trump and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis. He entertained the Twitterverse by drawing parallels between fascism and Faucism (referring to immunologist Anthony Fauci),Wikipedia threatening public health officials with the guillotine, and comparing the masking and lockdown of children to the treatment of women under the Taliban. And, most famously, he predicted that the enactment of his wild schemes would bring the pandemic to an end within 3–6 months.[1][2]

Shortly after its foundation by former AIER director Jeffrey TuckerWikipedia in May 2021, Kulldorff went to work alongside Bhattacharya and Gupta, as senior scientific director for the Brownstone Institute, which was described by its founder as the "spiritual child" of the Great Barrington Declaration.[3] And in December 2021, Kulldorff and Bhattacharya were appointed alongside fellow COVID denialists Scott AtlasWikipedia as the founding fellows of the new Academy for Science and Freedom at the Christian far-right Hillsdale College.[4]

Regarding Kulldorff's so-called "firing" from Harvard, the university's chief communications officer clarified that his professorship had been based on his employment by an independent Boston hospital with which the university had an affiliation agreement and that the termination of that employment was outside of their control.[2]