Covid-19 as Bioweapon?

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    • #443788
      eridani
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      • Total Posts: 9,978

      https://www.counterpunch.org/2021/09/02/covid-19-as-bioweapon-the-origins-of-a-conspiracy-theory/

      These findings are important on numerous fronts. The point about doing one’s “own research” should be of no surprise to those familiar with the study of conspiracy theories. This is a common rhetorical refrain from conspiracy theorists, as they seek to build support for their claims, contrary to the “lies” pushed by the mass media. The Fox News and Infowars findings are also to be expected based upon Fox’s history of indulging in the Chinese lab-bioweapon conspiracy (for examples, see here, and here, and here, and here), and Infowars’ notorious history of being a conspiracy venue, including its trafficking in claims that Covid-19 was created as a bioweapon, and that the Covid-19 vaccines are themselves a bioweapon.

      Outside of these right-wing venues, the bioweapon conspiracy has received attention on social media venues, and to some extent in alternative-left media (see here and here). But there is little evidence, perhaps surprisingly, that social media are used as primary venues for promoting the bioweapon claim. As my Ipsos analysis shows, reliance on social media venues for one’s political news is not associated with a greater likelihood of accepting the conspiracy. Nor are specific subgroups significantly more likely to accept the conspiracy, including Republicans who rely on social media for their political news.

      More than 30 years ago, Edward Herman and Noam Chomsky wrote about government efforts to “manufacture” the “consent” of the mass public. Today, officials seek to manufacture dissent to stoke mass distrust of government, in the process fostering mass cynicism – and thereby stifling public expectations that government should be pressured to serve the public and the common good. Stoking faux dissent, it turns out, helps to reinforce plutocratic politics, because it relieves potential pressure on officials to represent the public interest. If the government is so corrupt that it would manufacture a mass pandemic and murder millions of people throughout the world and more than 600,000 of its own citizens, then surely there is little that can be done to pressure an institution so tyrannical when it comes to representing the wants and needs of the masses.

      With the rise of the age of conspiracies, we see the poisoning of the public mind by way of the fostering of a mass commitment to fantastical, but ultimately nonsensical thinking. As Americans’ minds are turned to mush, the masses struggle to discern the difference between fact and fiction, imagination and reality, and actual arguments that draw on evidence from wild and baseless speculation. The embrace of these conspiracies speaks to the death of not only intellectualism but prospects for democratic empowerment. To quote James Madison, “a popular Government, without popular information, or the means of acquiring it, is but a Prologue to a Farce or a Tragedy; or, perhaps both.”

      Jesus: Hey, Dad? God: Yes, Son? Jesus: Western civilization followed me home. Can I keep it? God: Certainly not! And put it down this minute--you don't know where it's been! Tom Robbins in Another Roadside Attraction

    • #443789
      eridani
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      • Total Posts: 9,978

      https://www.cidrap.umn.edu/news-perspective/2020/05/scientists-exactly-zero-evidence-covid-19-came-lab

      Even Kristian Andersen, PhD, a professor in the Department of Immunology and Microbiology at Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, California, and lead author of a research letter published Mar 17 in Nature Medicine on the origins of the virus, first thought that COVID-19 was just as likely to have been accidentally released from a lab as it was to have come from nature.

      But that was before he learned more about COVID-19 and related coronaviruses, which have features already seen in nature. “There are lots of data and lots of evidence, as well as previous examples of this coming from nature,” he said. “We have exactly zero evidence or data of this having any connection to a lab.” And while Andersen, like other prominent virologists, says that he can’t completely rule out the possibility that the virus came from a lab, the odds of that happening are very small. He says the new coronavirus clearly originated in nature, “no question about it by now.”

      Jesus: Hey, Dad? God: Yes, Son? Jesus: Western civilization followed me home. Can I keep it? God: Certainly not! And put it down this minute--you don't know where it's been! Tom Robbins in Another Roadside Attraction

    • #443790
      eridani
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      • Total Posts: 9,978

      https://www.sciencenews.org/article/coronavirus-covid-19-not-human-made-lab-genetic-analysis-nature

      It was clear “almost overnight” that the virus wasn’t human-made, Andersen says. Anyone hoping to create a virus would need to work with already known viruses and engineer them to have desired properties. But the SARS-CoV-2 virus has components that differ from those of previously known viruses, so they had to come from an unknown virus or viruses in nature. “Genetic data irrefutably show that SARS-CoV-2 is not derived from any previously used virus backbone,” Andersen and colleagues write in the study.

      “This is not a virus somebody would have conceived of and cobbled together. It has too many distinct features, some of which are counterintuitive,” Garry says. “You wouldn’t do this if you were trying to make a more deadly virus.”

      Jesus: Hey, Dad? God: Yes, Son? Jesus: Western civilization followed me home. Can I keep it? God: Certainly not! And put it down this minute--you don't know where it's been! Tom Robbins in Another Roadside Attraction

    • #443791
      eridani
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      • Total Posts: 9,978

      https://www.forbes.com/sites/brucelee/2020/03/17/covid-19-coronavirus-did-not-come-from-a-lab-study-shows-natural-origins/

      Plus, it’s a lot easier to leak a pocket of air though your butt than a virus from a BSL-4 facility. BSL-4 facilities maintain the highest level of security among bio-laboratories since they do work on dangerous potentially life-threatening agents such as the Ebola, Lassa fever, and Marburg viruses. So it’s not as if the people inside these labs are playing throw and catch with the viruses and stuffing them into their pockets. To be designated as a BSL-4, the lab has to have the appropriate ventilation systems, reinforced walls, security systems, and construction to keep the wrong things inside and the right things outside.

      Is it unusual then to have a BSL-4 facility in a city like Wuhan, China? Not really. There are already at least six BSL-4 facilities in the U.S. in Atlanta, GA, Frederick, MD, Galveston, TX, Hamilton, MT, and San Antonio, TX. According to the Federation of American Scientists website, seven others may be planned, under construction, or possibly finished in various cities such as Boston, MA, and Richmond, VA. These labs in the U.S. also study and house a range of dangerous pathogens. So again having a lab that studies bad pathogens does not mean that the lab released anything.

      Jesus: Hey, Dad? God: Yes, Son? Jesus: Western civilization followed me home. Can I keep it? God: Certainly not! And put it down this minute--you don't know where it's been! Tom Robbins in Another Roadside Attraction

    • #443792
      eridani
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      • Total Posts: 9,978

      https://www.latimes.com/science/story/2020-05-09/was-the-coronavirus-made-in-a-wuhan-lab-heres-what-the-genetic-evidence-shows

      Meanwhile, other researchers who sifted through the genetic sequences of dozens of preserved viral samples found that the new coronavirus is a distant cousin of the coronavirus that caused the SARS outbreak of 2002 and 2003, and the coronavirus that gave rise to MERS in 2009. The virus responsible for COVID-19 has distinctive features that separate it from its predecessors by many, many generations, according to their report in the Journal of Virology.

      But none of the genetic mutations looked like ones a scientific genius would engineer in a lab to tweak a virus for better performance, the researchers wrote. Instead, they have all the hallmarks of the gradual accretion of changes that occur over time as a virus encounters new environments and the immune systems of new organisms.

      Jesus: Hey, Dad? God: Yes, Son? Jesus: Western civilization followed me home. Can I keep it? God: Certainly not! And put it down this minute--you don't know where it's been! Tom Robbins in Another Roadside Attraction

    • #443793
      eridani
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      • Total Posts: 9,978

      https://theconversation.com/heres-how-scientists-know-the-coronavirus-came-from-bats-and-wasnt-made-in-a-lab-141850

      An estimated 60% of known infectious diseases and 75% of all new, emerging, or re-emerging diseases in humans have animal origins. SARS-CoV-2 is the newest of seven coronaviruses found in humans, all of which came from animals, either from bats, mice or domestic animals. Bats were also the source of the viruses causing Ebola, rabies, Nipah and Hendra virus infections, Marburg virus disease, and strains of Influenza A virus.

      The genetic makeup or “genome” of SARS-CoV-2 has been sequenced and publicly shared thousands of times by scientists all over the world. If the virus had been genetically engineered in a lab there would be signs of manipulation in the genome data. This would include evidence of an existing viral sequence as the backbone for the new virus, and obvious, targeted inserted (or deleted) genetic elements. But no such evidence exists. It is very unlikely that any techniques used to genetically engineer the virus would not leave a genetic signature, like specific identifiable pieces of DNA code.

      Jesus: Hey, Dad? God: Yes, Son? Jesus: Western civilization followed me home. Can I keep it? God: Certainly not! And put it down this minute--you don't know where it's been! Tom Robbins in Another Roadside Attraction

    • #443799
      PADemD
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    • #443802
      PADemD
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    • #443821
      GZeusH
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      • Total Posts: 4,267

      Then it could be unleashed to cause havoc in the country with the world’s worst public health infrastructure, right?  A place where citizens’ health means nothing, and it is run for other ends (profit, maybe?)

      Corporate America consists of totalitarian entities laser-focused on short-term greed.

    • #443830
      NV Wino
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      • Total Posts: 7,992

      It wasn’t manufactured a lab. It originated in nature and animals. It was not manipulated by man. That doesn’t say that it was never in a lab being studied—for whatever purpose. That doesn’t say that it couldn’t have accidentally escaped during this study. In spite of extreme security and safety measures, viruses have been known to escape labs before.

      On a personal level, based on the shoddy merchandise from China that continues to flood our markets, I don’t have the highest confidence that a Chinese lab is so secure that a virus could never escape.

      “As we act, let us not become the evil that we deplore.” Barbara Lee
      “Politicians and pro athletes: The only people who still get paid when they lose.” William Rivers Pitt

    • #443851
      Ohio Barbarian
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      • Total Posts: 21,784

      I, and a few billion other people, are still alive.

      It is better to vote for what you want and not get it than to vote for what you don't want and get it.--Eugene Debs

      You can jail a revolutionary, but you can't jail the revolution.--Fred Hampton

    • #443930
      3fingerbrown
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      • Total Posts: 3,712

      If it can kill a lot of people quickly then the US military is very interested.

      All governments lie to their citizen's, but only Americans believe theirs.

    • #443985
      Red Cloud
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      • Total Posts: 1,536

      to find out from an astronomer that we as individuals are composed of over 300,000,000,000,000 virus parts! So, en garde, Covid!

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