Hold my bier!

Prologue: Mark Steyn mentions a paywalled Telegraph article, Wuhan scientists planned to release coronavirus particles into cave bats, leaked papers reveal.

It can also be found here. It’s a good thing there’s still some journalism going on in Britain. It isn’t happening here.

Chimeras, Cleavage and Bounced Czechs

New documents show that just 18 months before the first Covid cases appeared, researchers had submitted plans to release skin-penetrating nanoparticles containing “novel chimeric spike proteins” of bat coronaviruses into cave bats in Yunnan, China.

They also planned to create chimeric viruses, genetically enhanced to infect humans more easily, and requested $14 million from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) to fund the work.

Papers, confirmed as genuine by a former member of the Trump administration, show they were hoping to introduce “human-specific cleavage sites” to bat coronaviruses which would make it easier for the virus to enter human cells…

A Covid-19 researcher from the World Health Organisation (WHO), who wished to remain anonymous, said it was alarming that the grant proposal included plans to enhance the more deadly disease of Middle-East Respiratory Syndrome (Mers).

“The scary part is they were making infectious chimeric Mers viruses,” the source said.

“These viruses have a fatality rate over 30 per cent, which is at least an order of magnitude more deadly than Sars-CoV-2.

Drawing inspiration about merging viruses from a mashup of Jurassic Park with The Andromeda Strain, or possibly a combo of Frankenstein and Contagion; Dr. Fauci’s GovFundMe guy, Peter Daszak, says: “Here’s an idea! Let’s create an airborne coronavirus also transmissible through the skin.

American taxpayer funding for the coronavirus particle accelerator experiment was spiked following a DARPA review. There’s a check-box on the DARPA grant denial form: “Don’t give the ChiComs any ideas!

Some Daszak inspired coronavirus research that Dr. Fauci did fund, and about which Rand Paul asked Dr. Fauci, was exempted from DARPA review. By Fauci.

The responsibility of the NIAID and NIH is even more acute because for the first three years of the grant to EcoHealth Alliance there was a moratorium on funding gain-of-function research. When the moratorium expired in 2017, it didn’t just vanish but was replaced by a reporting system, the Potential Pandemic Pathogens Control and Oversight (P3CO) Framework, which required agencies to report for review any dangerous gain-of-function work they wished to fund.

The moratorium, referred to officially as a “pause,” specifically barred funding any gain-of-function research that increased the pathogenicity of the flu, MERS or SARS viruses. It defined gain-of-function very simply and broadly as “research that improves the ability of a pathogen to cause disease.”

But then a footnote on p.2 of the moratorium document states that “An exception from the research pause may be obtained if the head of the USG funding agency determines that the research is urgently necessary to protect the public health or national security.”

This seemed to mean that either the director of the NIAID, Dr. Anthony Fauci, or the director of the NIH, Dr. Francis Collins, or maybe both, would have invoked the exemption in order to keep the money flowing to Dr. Shi’s gain-of-function research, and later to avoid notifying the Federal reporting system of her research.

“Unfortunately, the NIAID Director and the NIH Director exploited this loophole to issue exemptions to projects subject to the Pause –preposterously asserting the exempted research was ‘urgently necessary to protect public health or national security’ — thereby nullifying the Pause,” Dr. Richard Ebright said in an interview with Independent Science News.

Fauci has also admitted there’s no way of knowing whether researchers in Wuhan carried out undisclosed gain-of-function research. Grant money is, of course, fungible.

Unsettling

They might have gotten away with it if their Lancet published letter hadn’t insisted on a “willing suspension of disbelief”.*

The now-infamous letter, signed by 27 leading public health experts, said they stood together to ‘strongly condemn’ the theories which they said ‘do nothing but create fear, rumours, and prejudice’.

‘Prejudice’ here is just a stand-in for ‘racism.’ The word reinforced the “Trump is a racist” meme because he accurately called SARS-CoV-2 the Spanish flu German measles Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever Wuhan flu.

A letter from 27 elite public health officials? In the Lancet?! They cite “prejudice”!!?

That moves the burden of supplying any actual evidence to the footnotes, which the MSM fact checkers never check, giving headline writers a free hand. Too good to check. Probably too complex to understand. And, as it turns out, not at all settled science (oxymoron alert) – despite the credentials and insistence of the signatories.

The letter in question was written by Peter Daszak, whose blatant conflict of interest goes unmentioned;

[H]e told his fellow signatories in an email that the letter would not be sent under the EcoHealth logo ‘and will not be identifiable as coming from any one organisation of person’.

The emails show he even considered not signing the letter himself, although in the end he did.

The idea, Daszak said, was for it to be coming from ‘a community supporting our colleagues’.

It condemned as conspiracy any thought that the CCP virus did not naturally emerge from wild animals. Of course, he stands by it.

The letter would have been more plausible if the Chinese Communist Party had actually been “rapid, open, and transparent” in “sharing of data” at the beginning of the outbreak, rather than the opposite. It would have been more believable if the Chinese hadn’t restricted travel internally, while leaving international flights out of Wuhan undisturbed. It would have been more credible if the Chinese hadn’t stonewalled the WHO investigation of which one Peter Daszak was a part. It would have been less suspicious if the US Department of Health and Human Services hadn’t redacted parts (which, absent the other prevarication, would have appeared unremarkable) of an email from Daszak to Anthony Fauci, who had used Daszak as a cutout to fund bat coronavirus research in Wuhan. Research which had all the qualities of gain-of-function despite Fauci’s ever less plausible denials.

Peter Daszak enlisted 26 scientists and the Lancet to spike scientific inquiry of a totalitarian regime’s response to a pandemic, which unequivocally began in their country (though they mounted laughable attempts to shift the blame to the US Army, and imports of frozen food)… in favor of self-interest tempered by political expediency. What he was really concerned about was his own reputation, funding, and relationship with the totalitarians in China… and in our own NIAID.

The scientific credibility of the ‘Public Health’ elite Daszak brought on board has been damaged. Worse, much worse, the credibility of public health science and science in general has suffered.

The Lancet consensus science (oxymoron alert) article rejected as “conspiracy” the possibility that the CCP virus could have originated in a lab. It claimed the CCP “worked diligently and effectively to rapidly identify the pathogen behind this outbreak” We knew the Chinese Politburo had by then already deleted a major bat coronavirus genome database, and had restricted the WHO team’s physical access to the wet market and to the labs.

Now the Lancet U-turns over Covid lab leak theory and publishes an ‘alternative view’ calling for a ‘transparent debate’ on the origins of the virus

After eighteen months the science is no longer settled.

We’d have far less vaccine resistance if we could place any trust in these ‘experts’ who think their most precious resource is credentials; when, actually, it’s trust. Credentialism corrupts absolutely. Trust is only protected by truth.

*H/T: Samuel Taylor Coleridge

“This is not a black and white issue,” Tom intoned.

The title is word play called a ‘Swifty’: A punning relationship between an adverb/adjective and the statement it refers to. This arises from the style in which the Tom Swift juvenile science fiction/adventure books were written up until the 70’s. I haven’t read any later than that. I fear woke erosion of the franchise.

Back to Swifties. A couple examples might clarify the word play:

I’ve got to fix the car,” said Tom mechanically.
I love hockey,” said Tom puckishly.

Like me, many elderly (or post elderly) writers, entrepreneurs, scientists, and inventors were inspired by the Tom Swift books: Ray Kurzweil, Robert Heinlein, Isaac Asimov, Paul Allen, and Bill Gates among them. Steve Wozniak had this to say:

“Another hero was Tom Swift, in the books. What he stood for, the freedom, the scientific knowledge and being an engineer gave him the ability to invent solutions to problems. He’s always been a hero to me. I buy old Tom Swift books now and read them to my own children.”

Here are a few example titles that explain why these books excited these creators:
Tom Swift and His Wireless Message -1911
Tom Swift and His Photo Telephone -1914
Tom Swift and His Giant Magnet -1932
Tom Swift and His Rocket Ship -1954

You can probably put an individual’s name on each of those titular dreams – now real world accomplishments. Several of those names are in the list above.

We owe the authors of the TS books a bit of respect for their effect on the imagination of daring individuals who were young 60 or more years ago. We owe those now rich, formerly young, for much of our current comfort and wealth.

What is inspiring the next generation of Wozniaks is unclear. We’re not going to have Tom Swift. If our teachers unions have their way, our kids are going to be reading Heather Has Two Mommies and Not My Idea: A Book About Whiteness.

Speaking of things that can’t happen anymore, it wasn’t long ago that NPR was acknowledging Tom Swift:

“Science fiction hero Tom Swift has amazed children with his incredible inventions since combustion and electricity drove the nation into a new era. These stories captured a cultural love of science and inspired such famous figures as Steve Wozniak and Isaac Asimov — all while predicting new technologies decades in advance.”

Now, that cultural love of science is under attack by ideologues who dismiss the scientific method as racist, by entrepreneurs who virtue signal by selective private censorship, and by so-called scientists who bring science into disrepute in exchange for celebrity. Who wants to grow up to be Ibram X. Kendi, Mark Zuckerberg, or Anthony Fauci?

That story wouldn’t be published today on NPR.

Tom Swift‘s history would be seen as “problematic” now. The TS books of the early 20th century had racist characteristics, and all (of the first 73 – through 1971, at least) celebrate objective, rational, linear thinking; delayed gratification, and self reliance – which the Smithsonian tells us are markers of ‘whiteness.’

It is by no means obvious, to anyone aside from Robin D’Angelo, et. al. that the racial anachronisms of the Tom Swift books affected those inspired by them. Nonetheless, TS books will be cancelled in the U.S. as soon as Ibram and Robin get around to it. Cat in the Hat comes first. Tom Swift is a Fahrenheit 451 candidate to be burned in Canada first…

Woke social media could remove all trace of my ever having existed!” said Tom unpersonably.

Which brings me to the actual point of this post. What if I told you a private individual and a few others “designed a [CCP virus] vaccine, and contracted a company to manufacture that vaccine in June 2020 for under $5k.” Now, the individual who arranged this is not a Swiftian teenager, he’s got a PhD. But this guy named Josiah Zayner did just that. This amazing feat won’t be inspiring many young people, though. When Zayner started sharing this info he was banned from YouTube for life.

Which is why – combined with corporate-news silence – you probably haven’t heard about it.

Read this whole thing: The Crime of Curiosity. It carries an inspiring call to individual possibility.

bypassing elite institutions, democratizing science, and biological self-determination, or every individual’s right to his or her own body, which includes their DNA — and the right to change it.

And don’t forget why John Galt, an adult version of Tom Swift, started the strike.

Scientific Mess-od

“If you thought that science was certain – well, that is just an error on your part.”

“I would rather have questions that can’t be answered than answers that can’t be questioned.”

-Richard Feynman

One thing we learned from the CCP virus is that we have unelected, credentialist politicians passing themselves off as scientists: Sinecurists for whom the scientific method is something “more honoured in the breach than in the observance.”

The consequences are predictable:
Misplaced trust: When trust in science fosters belief in pseudoscience and the benefits of critical evaluation

“We identify two critical determinants of vulnerability to pseudoscience. First, participants who trust science are more likely to believe and disseminate false claims that contain scientific references than false claims that do not. Second, reminding participants of the value of critical evaluation reduces belief in false claims, whereas reminders of the value of trusting science do not.”

You might think that means it is easier to persuade those with more education to apply critical thinking than to convince less credentialed people to do so. The rubes in flyover country are therefore more likely to qualify as domestic terrorists, by DHS definition, than the anointed.

Apparently it doesn’t work quite that way:
Americans with PhDs are the most reluctant to get vaccinated against COVID, study finds

Maybe that Carnegie Mellon University/University of Pittsburg study is bogus. Maybe the 10,000 PhDs in that study have their degrees in Education or ________ Studies, and see CCP virus vaccination as a plot against oppressed minorities.

Our President agrees with the plot theory. He sees the Tuskegee Experiment (not to be confused with the Tuskegee Airmen, Mr. President) as a reason blacks are vaccination hesitant.

Really? Joe, you’re this ‘ ‘ close to forcing every American to be vaccinated. Somehow resistance to that is comparable to an immoral government experiment on a handful of black men? 70 years ago? Under a Democrat President? … Actually, you would absolutely correct about the immorality in both cases. Too bad that you can’t understand the point. Because, if you did, you would have told the DHS that people who object to forced vaccination are not to be called terrorists.

All you accomplished was to remind blacks of something deserving an abject apology. Which has already been made, but it couldn’t have hurt to do it again instead of re-politicizing it.

You promoted racial discord for current political gain. You discouraged blacks from getting the protection you advertised. I know that is straight out of the Democrat Playbook… but SHAME! While it does reprise the theory that AIDS was developed by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) to kill off African Americans and gays, it is unworthy of Hunter’s legacy.

OK. To atone for the Tuskegee Experiment atrocity, what could we do to encourage CCP virus vaccination? Make White people go first! Been there. Done that.

Back to the thinking of those of PhDs. Maybe they did apply critical thinking – noted the government positions change frequently by 180 degrees, have been worse than ineffective, and claim ‘science’ is being attacked when any diktat is questioned.

Is it possible those PhDs consider basing conclusions on pictures in the New York Times to be unscientific?:
CDC Took Mistaken Data on Delta Variant Transmissibility From a New York Times Infographic

The CDC makes national economic policy based on incorrect data in NYT pictures, and bases its disease prevention advice on CNN chyrons:
The Gay Festival Behind the CDC’s New Mask Guidelines
…instead of the Random Controlled Trials, which they insist on when evaluating everything else.

The word “method” is no longer to be inferred when the apparatchiks tell us to ‘follow the science.’

The “Public Health” version of the 1st Amendment

There’s a vacillating post at Areo, titled The Promotion of Ivermectin: A Free Speech Edge Case, arguing that some modified limited hangout version of free speech should at least be considered when public health is the question.

On the facts, and given the performance of the ivermectin prohibitionists, it’s as near the free speech edge as Omaha is near an ocean.

The article’s case depends on a critique of the paucity of ‘gold standard’ Randomized Controlled Trials conducted on ivermectin. This is the only acceptable methodology for the CDC, FDA, and Dr. Fauci. The essential question is posed as “What if some people resist vaccination because they become persuaded ivermectin is an alternative?” Before we examine the precursors to the social media ban on discussing ivermectin at the behest of the gold standard exclusivists, let’s note that they have refused an opportunity to conduct a human challenge trail.

The boots-on-the-ground clinical evidence for Ivermectin is significant. There are very well respected practicing clinical physicians recommending it in their treatment protocols. The broad empirical data from Peru and India strongly suggest calling let’s-try-ivermectin proponents conspiracists is irrational. Nonetheless, that is our situation with government approved protocols and in Big Tach political interference.

Our “public health” apparatchiks might have a more acceptable case for prohibiting experimental use of a safe drug such as ivermectin in the midst of a pandemic if anyone still trusted them. If they hadn’t started out telling us CCP virus wasn’t a problem for the US; fumbled the specification, preparation, approval, and distribution of test kits; lied about masks, mandated masks, and then lied about lying about masks; insisted the virus couldn’t possibly have escaped from a lab with a sketchy safety history, that researched bat viruses, was at the epicenter of the outbreak, erased records, refused to cooperate with investigations. And to which they had supplied funds for gain of function research.

Meanwhile, they usurped power. For example, where is it written that the CDC has authority to order payment of rents suspended? Why wouldn’t we laugh out loud at practicing bureaucrats claiming they are very embodiment science?

If all this bullshit hadn’t been combined with a lofty display of their superiority, vaccination resistance would be much less a problem.

As if that performance is not enough to make reasonable people nervous, combine it with a Twitter/Facebook/Amazon political conspiracy to prevent us from talking about anything those same bureaucrats told us was ‘settled science,’ and what do you expect will happen?

People will take ivermectin doses manufactured for horses, because their doctors are prohibited from giving them appropriate safe doses. It’s less risky than following the ‘science.’