“I don’t think you are the one person who gets to make a decision. We can listen to your advice but there are people on the other side saying there’s not going to be a surge and we can safely open the economy.”

The speaker was Sen. Rand Paul, in the hearing with the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions on Tuesday. Sen. Paul, a medical doctor, was addressing Dr. Anthony Fauci of the president’s coronavirus task force. Dr. Fauci did not appreciate the challenge.

“I’m a scientist, a physician and a public health official,” Fauci said. The millions of Americans struggling to get their lives back might quibble with the order, and a key part of the description is missing.

Anthony Fauci earned a medical degree from Cornell University in 1966. He does not list advanced degrees in molecular biology so, strictly speaking, Anthony Fauci is not a virologist.

In 1984, a full 36 years ago, Fauci hired on with the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID).

There Fauci made a name for himself with the claim that AIDS would ravage the heterosexual community. That turned out to be wrong and for background see The Myth of Heterosexual AIDS, by Michael Fumento, and Inventing the AIDS Virus by Peter Duesberg, who is a molecular biologist.

On Fauci’s watch, NIAID became a major funder of research for what is now known as HIV/AIDS. Dr. Fauci could often be found testifying before Congress, which is where the money comes from. Lately his ability to get things wrong has been on full display.

In January of 2020, Dr. Fauci said it was unclear whether the coronavirus could spread person to person and cited a very low risk to the United States. Fauci said people need not wear masks and then contended they should. No more shaking hands, but according to Fauci it’s okay to have sex with strangers you meet online.

In press conferences, Fauci avoided the most important fact about COVID-19—the true mortality rate. Instead, Fauci showed fondness for various “models” of how the virus might spread. In early April, Fauci said the coronavirus might become “seasonal” with a resurgence later in the year. On Tuesday, the good doctor held to that line.

“If some areas—cities states or what have you—jump over those barriers, checkpoints and prematurely open up without having the capability of being able to respond effectively and efficiently,” Fauci testified. “My concern is that we will start to see little spikes that might turn into outbreaks.”

So maybe the kids would not be returning to school in fall, and their embattled parents not returning to work. That brought on the pushback from Rand Paul, who cited varying mortality figures and rejected a singular approach for the entire country.

In his response, Dr. Fauci said he it was not his business to address economic concerns. That comes something as a surprise to the millions now unemployed due to the lockdown approach Fauci advances.

Prophecy and fearmongering are not science, so Dr. Fauci’s claim to be first and foremost a scientist needs some qualification. Fauci, 79, is indeed a public health official, but also a politician of sorts.

Dr. Anthony Fauci has held forth at NIAID for 36 years, making decisions that affect millions of people, without once having to face the vote of the people. If the people thought that he should have been shown the door years ago it would be hard to blame them.