Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19): Conspiracy Theories & Claims

bugmum

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Biden will be at the G-7 meeting in Cornwall on June 11th with Putin.

Then Biden and Putin will meet in Geneva June 16th.

Some think this China controversy has something to do with China not wanting Biden and Putin to get to comfortable ?

Cornwall is happy everyone is coming to them.

Cornwall is happy? That's not what our local news is saying! Half the car parks in Falmouth are already closed, just in time for half-term holidays...
 

Lobeydosser

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President Biden's renewed inquiry into Covid's origins, with apparent emphasis on the Wuhan lab leak theory, has prompted a furious response from the CCP - who now counter-claim that it may have started on an army base in Maryland!

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2021/may/27/biden-china-coronavirus-origins-beijing
I've posted earlier in this thread, there is quite plausible evidence that it "could" have come from Ft Detrick - to be honest it is or isn't (in my opinion anyway) just as likley as the Wuhan lab.
Here - https://forums.forteana.org/index.p...cy-theories-claims.66849/page-68#post-2037525
 

blessmycottonsocks

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Thousands of anti-vaxxers, led by Piers Corbyn, storm London shopping mall, calling for Covid restrictions to be dropped:

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2...rt-protesters-occupy-westfield-mall-in-london

The irony is that, by organising mass rallies, where social distancing and face masks are conspicuous by their absence and by spreading anti-vaccine propaganda, these conspiracists are exacerbating the very conditions that may make further lockdowns unavoidable.
 

uair01

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Here's a good argument against the lab leak theory:

I still find it hard to see how the virus could leak from a lab without the authorities in China noticing it and trying to contain it until weeks later. Or to all evidence we have without even knowing until very late what kind of virus it was

We know that both local and national authorities tried as hard as they could to convince themselves there was no human transmission and later no asymptomatic transmission. Why would they do that if the virus had come from a lab?

It’s one thing to have such a low level of security that a coronavirus could infect one or two workers. But no one notices? They miss work because they are very sick, no one wonders if it could be a lab virus? Then when dozens get sick, no one thinks it could be the lab?
 

marhawkman

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Here's a good argument against the lab leak theory:

I still find it hard to see how the virus could leak from a lab without the authorities in China noticing it and trying to contain it until weeks later. Or to all evidence we have without even knowing until very late what kind of virus it was

We know that both local and national authorities tried as hard as they could to convince themselves there was no human transmission and later no asymptomatic transmission. Why would they do that if the virus had come from a lab?

It’s one thing to have such a low level of security that a coronavirus could infect one or two workers. But no one notices? They miss work because they are very sick, no one wonders if it could be a lab virus? Then when dozens get sick, no one thinks it could be the lab?
Ah, but you missed the REAL kicker about why the lab leak is plausible. You said "very sick". But the reality is that most people infected become contagious BEFORE they get sick, and most have mild, if ANY, symptoms. A lab worker who was accidentally exposed, might never even have a fever.

Which is one of the things that makes tracing transmission hard. Who had the virus? Some people develop the typical "flu-like" symptoms, some don't.

Also... one thing people pointed out over a year ago... is the Wuhan lab did in fact have the data needed to do antibody tests to screen people for exposure. When did they figure that out?
 

marhawkman

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blessmycottonsocks

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The Guardian's latest podcast on the Wuhan lab leak theory.

A couple of important points were that "China has been churning out misinformation about Covid from the start" and the bat to human theory seems to be less plausible now as, despite desperate efforts to prove the link over the last 18 months, no definitive evidence for animal transmission has yet been found.
The podcast ends on a pessimistic note that, given China's notorious lack of transparency and the extreme political sensitivity, a definitive answer to Covid's origins may never be found.

https://www.theguardian.com/news/audio/2021/jun/03/the-wuhan-lab-leak-theory-podcast
 

Stormkhan

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Thing is, I've always thought that the Chinese government is guilty of cover-up; cover-up of an accidental 'leak' from the lab. Say, a worker at the lab becoming a carrier and then going to market etc. etc.
The CCP is absolutely reliant on the party being perfect and that the government can do no wrong. Ever. It does not make mistakes nor do its "high tech" labs make mistakes. Lone citizens do. And they are punished.
So even if it was the labs poor containment procedures that kicked it all off, the CCP would never admit it.
 

GNC

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If you were going to make a virus, how would you go about it? Being a Chinese scientist doesn't make you a magician.
 

Analogue Boy

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If you were going to make a virus, how would you go about it? Being a Chinese scientist doesn't make you a magician.
Being a Chinese scientist puts you closer to creating a virus than someone who does card tricks. This is why scientists get asked about science a lot while magicians are often asked ‘How did you do it?’ when the 3 of clubs turns up again.
 

uair01

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https://www.vanityfair.com/news/202...inside-the-fight-to-uncover-covid-19s-origins

At times, it seemed the only other people entertaining the lab-leak theory were crackpots or political hacks hoping to wield COVID-19 as a cudgel against China. President Donald Trump’s former political adviser Steve Bannon, for instance, joined forces with an exiled Chinese billionaire named Guo Wengui to fuel claims that China had developed the disease as a bioweapon and purposefully unleashed it on the world. As proof, they paraded a Hong Kong scientist around right-wing media outlets until her manifest lack of expertise doomed the charade. With disreputable wing nuts on one side of them and scornful experts on the other, the DRASTIC researchers often felt as if they were on their own in the wilderness, working on the world’s most urgent mystery. They weren’t alone. But investigators inside the U.S. government asking similar questions were operating in an environment that was as politicized and hostile to open inquiry as any Twitter echo chamber. When Trump himself floated the lab-leak hypothesis last April, his divisiveness and lack of credibility made things more, not less, challenging for those seeking the truth. “The DRASTIC people are doing better research than the U.S. government,” says David Asher, a former senior investigator under contract to the State Department. The question is: Why?

... In a CNN interview on March 26, Dr. Redfield, the former CDC director under Trump, made a candid admission: “I am of the point of view that I still think the most likely etiology of this pathogen in Wuhan was from a laboratory, you know, escaped.” Redfield added that he believed the release was an accident, not an intentional act. In his view, nothing that happened since his first calls with Dr. Gao changed a simple fact: The WIV needed to be ruled out as a source, and it hadn’t been. After the interview aired, death threats flooded his inbox. The vitriol came not just from strangers who thought he was being racially insensitive but also from prominent scientists, some of whom used to be his friends. One said he should just “wither and die.” Peter Daszak was getting death threats too, some from QAnon conspirators. Inside the U.S. government, meanwhile, the lab-leak hypothesis had survived the transition from Trump to Biden. On April 15, Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines told the House Intelligence Committee that two “plausible theories” were being weighed: a lab accident or natural emergence.
 

blessmycottonsocks

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If you were going to make a virus, how would you go about it? Being a Chinese scientist doesn't make you a magician.

No magic necessary.
The Wuhan lab was engaged in so-called "gain of function" research.
This means that existing viruses are modified to make them more transmissible and more deadly.
The rationale behind this is supposedly to help scientists identify which viruses are the greatest threat to humanity and to help with developing countermeasures.
 

GNC

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No magic necessary.
The Wuhan lab was engaged in so-called "gain of function" research.
This means that existing viruses are modified to make them more transmissible and more deadly.
The rationale behind this is supposedly to help scientists identify which viruses are the greatest threat to humanity and to help with developing countermeasures.

But which is easier, modifying viruses (which nobody here has explained how you do) or contracting an infectious disease from natural circumstance, and it, unlike loads of others that arise naturally, happens to be the one which finally catches fire? It was only a matter of time. Bubonic plague wasn't developed in a lab. Spanish flu wasn't developed in a lab.

I can believe this Covid being examined in a lab and someone carelessly being infected, but people were infected already. We've already seen how easily this disease mutates without any help from a lab.
 

blessmycottonsocks

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"which nobody here has explained how you do"

Perhaps because we're not virologists?
The Wuhan biotechnology lab specialised in gain of function research and, presumably, employed some very experienced scientists to carry out the modification of SARS-CoV-2.
 

GNC

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"which nobody here has explained how you do"

Perhaps because we're not virologists?
The Wuhan biotechnology lab specialised in gain of function research and, presumably, employed some very experienced scientists to carry out the modification of SARS-CoV-2.

Did they do the same with avian flu, for instance?
 

Lb8535

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Although the transmission from animal seems most likely to me based on our past experience with illness, as a non-biologist I can accept that viruses can be bred. I suspect it's like breeding mammals - find a strain that is more [xxx] [transmissible], start colonies, let them into a live environment and they will push out other strains. Viruses mutate constantly - you find and encourage the ones with the structure that you are looking for. Might even be possible to find some that are more transmissible but less harmful and let them push out the other strains. That being said, the main reason that no one believed the laboratory story originally is that there was absolutely zero evidence behind it, and it was being proclaimed by irresponsible idiots. If there is a responsible non-idiot who says, you know, like the other theories there is no evidence, but it's a possibility that should be examined, then that's a good reason to examine it. I find the explanations as to why anyone would be experimenting to create something like c19 for anything other than biological warfare illogical, which I imagine is why China is pushing back so hard. But I also understand the experts who say that for biological warfare purposes, c19 is not ideal. But no one ever said that projects being funded by the government in any country are all worthy of funding or conducted by competents.
 

bugmum

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But which is easier, modifying viruses (which nobody here has explained how you do) or contracting an infectious disease from natural circumstance

Viruses, although strange things, still have RNA or DNA. That leaves them open to genetic manipulation - removing genes, inserting genes, scrambling genes. As to how easy it is, I believe the earliest genetic manipulations on any kind of virus took place in the 1970s, when biotechnology was a whole lot more primitive than it is today. I cannot vouch for how these things work in viruses as I am a bacteriologist, but some types will be easier to manipulate than others. Fro example, it took me a couple of months to mutate a Salmonella species, but 18 months into trying to manipulate Yersinia pseudotuberculosis, 3 different methods, and I had to admit defeat.

Phage, which are bacterial viruses, are bred by infecting them into a host bacterium, which is then grown in the traditional manner (in a flask of media or on an agar plate) before the phage are extracted. Previous reading suggests human viruses are often maintained in cultured cell lines - cell culture is laborious and time-consuming, but generally straightforward, depending on which cell types are being used. (J774s - yay! Differentiated CaCo-2 - argh!)

As for the accidental lab release, I have no opinion either way, but would respectfully remind you of the foot and mouth virus escaping from Pirbright a number of years ago...
 

uair01

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Viruses, although strange things, still have RNA or DNA. That leaves them open to genetic manipulation - removing genes, inserting genes, scrambling genes. As to how easy it is, I believe the earliest genetic manipulations on any kind of virus took place in the 1970s, when biotechnology was a whole lot more primitive than it is today. I cannot vouch for how these things work in viruses as I am a bacteriologist, but some types will be easier to manipulate than others. Fro example, it took me a couple of months to mutate a Salmonella species, but 18 months into trying to manipulate Yersinia pseudotuberculosis, 3 different methods, and I had to admit defeat.

Phage, which are bacterial viruses, are bred by infecting them into a host bacterium, which is then grown in the traditional manner (in a flask of media or on an agar plate) before the phage are extracted. Previous reading suggests human viruses are often maintained in cultured cell lines - cell culture is laborious and time-consuming, but generally straightforward, depending on which cell types are being used. (J774s - yay! Differentiated CaCo-2 - argh!)

As for the accidental lab release, I have no opinion either way, but would respectfully remind you of the foot and mouth virus escaping from Pirbright a number of years ago...
Since you are a bacteriologist, please let me pester you with a layman's question ... have they modified bacteria yet so they can eat plastics? That might be useful. AFAIK those beast can eat almost anything.
 

GNC

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Viruses, although strange things, still have RNA or DNA. That leaves them open to genetic manipulation - removing genes, inserting genes, scrambling genes. As to how easy it is, I believe the earliest genetic manipulations on any kind of virus took place in the 1970s, when biotechnology was a whole lot more primitive than it is today. I cannot vouch for how these things work in viruses as I am a bacteriologist, but some types will be easier to manipulate than others. Fro example, it took me a couple of months to mutate a Salmonella species, but 18 months into trying to manipulate Yersinia pseudotuberculosis, 3 different methods, and I had to admit defeat.

Phage, which are bacterial viruses, are bred by infecting them into a host bacterium, which is then grown in the traditional manner (in a flask of media or on an agar plate) before the phage are extracted. Previous reading suggests human viruses are often maintained in cultured cell lines - cell culture is laborious and time-consuming, but generally straightforward, depending on which cell types are being used. (J774s - yay! Differentiated CaCo-2 - argh!)

As for the accidental lab release, I have no opinion either way, but would respectfully remind you of the foot and mouth virus escaping from Pirbright a number of years ago...

Thank you! Good thing about this board is that it attracts some learned folks. But I would ask, is it easier for a virus to mutate naturally, on its own, or is it easier for a deadly version of it to be manufactured in a lab? Was the foot and mouth incident closer to a one-off, or is it the norm?
 

bugmum

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Since you are a bacteriologist, please let me pester you with a layman's question ... have they modified bacteria yet so they can eat plastics? That might be useful. AFAIK those beast can eat almost anything.
I'm not aware of anybody intentionally doing this, but it's a big old world out there. However, the model organism that I worked with - wax moth larvae, Galleria mellonella - were touted as an answer not long ago as they were observed eating plastic, and I have mentioned it elsewhere on the boards. There is evidence that they are actually digesting it, not just chewing it into smaller pieces, and that digestion is likely to be the result of their intestinal microflora working on it. G. mellonella in the wild eat beeswax, which has chemical similarities to certain types of plastic, hence this digestive ability. I don't know whether the boys at Cambridge are trying to isolate the microorganism responsible; if they are, they're understandably keeping it close to their chests. Lots of Universities investing in commercial spin-out companies these days!

is it easier for a virus to mutate naturally, on its own, or is it easier for a deadly version of it to be manufactured in a lab? Was the foot and mouth incident closer to a one-off, or is it the norm?
Every living thing has the possibility to mutate when it reproduces - the mechanisms that read the code are prone to getting it wrong. Some errors have no effect, some will have a lethal effect, some will confer advantage and be propagated. However, these are random mutations, and thus the possibility of a particular effect arising is low. If you want to produce a particular mutation, these days we have the technology to do so by introducing the appropriate code, but it will take time and effort as Nature doesn't always want to be told what to do! So yes, it's easier for the virus to mutate naturally, but if you're looking for a particular outcome, it's easier to do it yourself. (For instance, back to bacteria: Yersinia pestis, causative agent of the plague, is very closely related to Yersinia pseudotuberculosis, which is a less virulent pathogen giving rise to gastrointestinal problems. Y. pestis has evolved quite quickly through the acquisition of three plasmids which have given it the ability to survive inside flea guts and produce the nasty bits that make Yp so lethal. However, this 'quick' evolution has occurred within the last 5,000 years - small beer in planetary terms but quite a long time in human perception.)

As to the foot and mouth incident at Pirbright, it should definitely be a one-off - facilities like that are supposed to be very closely monitored so that they don't release things accidentally, and the staff are trained to minimise such a risk. When they were building the BSL3 facilities in our lab, which allow us to hold some nasty bacteria, there was a very heated staff meeting during which a couple of people were extremely persistent in asking how sure they were that nothing would be escaping. I recall my eventual boss having his head in his hands at one point as he patiently explained the measures for the umpteenth time...
 

blessmycottonsocks

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I'm not aware of anybody intentionally doing this, but it's a big old world out there. However, the model organism that I worked with - wax moth larvae, Galleria mellonella - were touted as an answer not long ago as they were observed eating plastic, and I have mentioned it elsewhere on the boards. There is evidence that they are actually digesting it, not just chewing it into smaller pieces, and that digestion is likely to be the result of their intestinal microflora working on it. G. mellonella in the wild eat beeswax, which has chemical similarities to certain types of plastic, hence this digestive ability. I don't know whether the boys at Cambridge are trying to isolate the microorganism responsible; if they are, they're understandably keeping it close to their chests. Lots of Universities investing in commercial spin-out companies these days!


Every living thing has the possibility to mutate when it reproduces - the mechanisms that read the code are prone to getting it wrong. Some errors have no effect, some will have a lethal effect, some will confer advantage and be propagated. However, these are random mutations, and thus the possibility of a particular effect arising is low. If you want to produce a particular mutation, these days we have the technology to do so by introducing the appropriate code, but it will take time and effort as Nature doesn't always want to be told what to do! So yes, it's easier for the virus to mutate naturally, but if you're looking for a particular outcome, it's easier to do it yourself. (For instance, back to bacteria: Yersinia pestis, causative agent of the plague, is very closely related to Yersinia pseudotuberculosis, which is a less virulent pathogen giving rise to gastrointestinal problems. Y. pestis has evolved quite quickly through the acquisition of three plasmids which have given it the ability to survive inside flea guts and produce the nasty bits that make Yp so lethal. However, this 'quick' evolution has occurred within the last 5,000 years - small beer in planetary terms but quite a long time in human perception.)

As to the foot and mouth incident at Pirbright, it should definitely be a one-off - facilities like that are supposed to be very closely monitored so that they don't release things accidentally, and the staff are trained to minimise such a risk. When they were building the BSL3 facilities in our lab, which allow us to hold some nasty bacteria, there was a very heated staff meeting during which a couple of people were extremely persistent in asking how sure they were that nothing would be escaping. I recall my eventual boss having his head in his hands at one point as he patiently explained the measures for the umpteenth time...

That's a genuinely illuminating response, Bugmum - not the least of which was shedding some light on your unusual sobriquet!

Regarding the Foot and Mouth outbreak in Surrey, which may or may not bear something of a similarity to events behind Covid's origins, when animals in close proximity to the research centre in Pirbright first displayed Foot and Mouth symptoms, I assume that a lab-leak was immediately considered?
Odd then that when people in close proximity to the Wuhan Virology Research lab, first started displaying symptoms, the lab-leak possibility was immediately played-down.
 

Souleater

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ITVs 'This Morning' has banned anti-vaxxer Beverly Turner from the show after a heated debate with host Dermot O'Leary

"ITV has blocked pundit Beverley Turner from showing on This Morning following an on-screen row over the coronavirus vaccine.

A dialogue concerning the jab’s effectiveness grew to become a heated row after Ms Turner stated younger individuals ought to reject having the vaccine.

It is understood that employees on the present have been instructed to not ebook Ms Turner, 47, as a information reviewer amid fears her Covid-19 views are too controversial."

https://travelguides.buzz/topstorie...ley-turner-is-blocked-from-itvs-this-morning/
 
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Souleater

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Author Naomi Wolf has been banned from 'Twitter' after a series of tweets about conspiricies around the Covid 19 vaccinations and calling Dr. Fauci 'Satan'

"American author Naomi Wolf has been suspended from Twitter after spreading vaccine misinformation.

Dr Wolf, well known for her acclaimed third-wave feminist book The Beauty Myth, posted a wide-range of unfounded theories about vaccines.

One tweet claimed that vaccines were a "software platform that can receive uploads".

She also compared Dr Anthony Fauci, the top Covid adviser in the US, to "Satan" to her more than 140,000 followers."

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-57374241
 
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