"...The fact that we can correlate waves with lockdowns and other measures shows that these interventions do work..."
Yes, in the sense that carpet-bombing "works" just as well as precision guided munitions, only with massive collateral damage. I have always said that if hard lockdowns are the only alternative to "doing nothing", then it is completely reasonable for any politician or political movement to seriously consider "doing nothing".
The scandal is that competent and honest officials could and should have advised that there were cost-effective targeted strategies. The scandal also is that competent and honest experts not in official positions, have been not only disregarded, but censored.
It is logical to conclude that there are political vested interests and ideology driving all this. Not necessarily a conspiracy, but a coincidence of interests. Have you noticed that some of the wealthiest people in the world have made a killing even as the middle class is in the process of being destroyed? It was the same in the 2008 crash; as most people were being wiped out, Piketty's famous data shows the top 0.1% continued to add to their wealth. They sold out at the right time and even "shorted" the markets to profit from the losses of the many. This indicates more than cleverness, this indicates "agency".
A corollary question I have been repeatedly raising, is why do bureaucrats, the MSM, and Big Tech insist that officials are automatically the gold standard for expertise? How are officials selected? Are experts who apply for positions, thrown into demanding frontline situations and selections made on the basis of who performed the most effectively? Actually, officials tend to be experts who are not so bored by paperwork that they remain in frontline practice. Just as it is often joked about that teachers are most often the people who can't actually DO things so they teach instead, I argue that officials tend to be the LESS competent "experts".
I have been through this on the subject of systemic housing affordability. All the officials are giving governments advice that makes the problem worse, and two or three decades of evidence cannot convince these people that they are wrong. Part of the problem would be loss of face - so they double down. Of course there are powerful vested interests in property investment and finance, and the 0.1%, encouraging this incompetence.
I have also been through this on the subject of certain chronic pain conditions. The entire establishment pursues orthodoxies that leave millions of people suffering unnecessarily; the suffering is all too conveniently assumed away as hypochondria or "phantom pain". In fact the fascia and connective tissue and the interstitial fluids in the body are so important, that "medical research" that fails to look for explanations in this area, are like geographers pre Columbus.
The best reading recommendation I can give is political: "The Decline and Fall of the West" by Mike Alder (2007). He says the west is collapsing because our experts are pumped with knowledge that enables them to pass exams, but we as a civilization, and certainly including the "expert" class, have been steadily losing the ability to think things through logically.
Regarding masks, I think you see my point that they are just one factor among many, and if all the other factors are inimical, then wearing a mask might mean your transfers of infections that will become serious in 1 hour present, will become serious in 1 hour and 10 minutes. Being there for 4 hours "because I am safe because I am wearing a mask" is a problem. One hears anecdotal evidence of people horrified to test positive when they are religious mask wearers.
People wearing a mask outside in non-crowded places are more at risk of mental disorders than they are from Covid. Authorities enforcing mask wearing under these conditions are in such bad faith and so tyrannical (especially when the police act as jackbooted goons) that it would be morally right to revolt against it en mass.
Here is a sickening irony. George Floyd was knowingly Covid positive, and not self isolating. He told the arresting officers this. If he was a white guy in Melbourne, progressives would just shrug their shoulders and say "he asked for it", if paranoid cops trying to protect themselves and the public from the dreaded Covid, had ended up choking him to death. Progressives are doing this for healthy non-infectious people battered into a coma by police thugs merely for being outside for too long, let alone going about shopping while knowingly Covid positive!