Maybe it’s my training as an attorney, but I always like to look back at what people said BEFORE they knew there was a problem.
Opinion by Kent Heckenlively, JD
When people KNOW there’s a problem, (and may have had a part in creating it), they’ll lie like crazy. No conspiracy theory necessary. It’s just human nature. Am I right?
Which is why your beloved attorney turned science teacher, turned virus hunter, has been relatively quiet these past few weeks.
I just haven’t known what to say because I hadn’t run across any REALLY GOOD INFORMATION that I felt supported my suspicion that this virus was created by humans and escaped(?) from a lab.
Then I ran across an article which appeared in Nature on November 12, 2015 by Declan Butler with the title, Engineered Bat Virus Stirs Debate Over Risky Research. Here’s the link: www.nature.com/news/engineered-bat-virus-stirs-debate-over-risky-research-1.18787
Let’s read the first few paragraphs together, shall we?
“An experiment that created a hybrid version of a bat coronavirus – one related to the virus that causes SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) – has triggered renewed debate over whether engineering lab variants of viruses with possible pandemic potential is worth the risks.
In an article published in Nature Medicine on 9 November, scientists investigated a virus called SHC014, which is found in horseshoe bats in China. The researchers created a chimaeric virus, made up of a surface protein of SHC014 and the backbone of a SARS virus that had been adapted to grow in mice and to mimic human disease. The chimaera infected human airway cells – proving that the surface protein of SHC014 has the necessary structure to bind to a key receptor on the cells and to infect them. It also caused disease in mice, but did not kill them.”
The next few paragraphs talk about how this surface protein has been found in at least one other bat population in the wild, raising the question of whether the occurrence of bat to human transmission had happened in the past, or could happen, even though at the time it had not yet been observed.
However, it was the next three paragraphs which really caught my attention:
“But other virologists question whether the information gleaned from the experiment justifies the potential risk. Although the extent of any risk is difficult to assess, Simon Wain-Hobson, a virologist at the Pasteur Institute in Paris, points out that the researchers have created a novel virus that “grows remarkably well” in human cells. “If this virus escaped, nobody could predict the trajectory,” he says.
The argument is essentially a rerun of the debate over whether to allow lab research that increases the virulence, ease of spread or host range of dangerous pathogens – what is known as ‘gain of function’ research. In October 2014, the US government imposed a moratorium on federal funding of such research on the viruses that cause SARS, influenza and MERS (Middle East respiratory syndrome, a deadly diseases caused by a virus that sporadically jumps from camels to people.)
The latest study was already under way before the US moratorium began, and the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) allowed it to proceed while it was under review by the agency, says Ralph Baric, an infectious-disease researcher at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, a co-author of the study. The NIH eventually concluded that the work was not so risky as to fall under the moratorium, he says.”
Do I really need to explain much about those paragraphs?
They engineered a bat virus that infected humans remarkably well, and even those who created it were saying in effect, “Shit! If this gets out of the lab it could cause some real trouble!”
But we’re supposed to feel safe, right? After all, the article says there was a moratorium placed on this type of research in October of 2014. So, maybe we crashed the world economy and caused global panic this time, but it won’t happen again, right?
But in December of 2017 the Department of Health and Human Services published a document with the terrifying title, Framework for Guiding Funding Decisions about Proposed Research Involving Enhanced Potential Pandemic Pathogens.
Just the kind of document which allows you to sleep safe at night knowing the government is protecting you, right? Here’s the link: www.phe.gov/s3/dualuse/Documents/p3co.pdf?fbclid=IwAR37vrv5K3PdDdOHcZf1rnkD9svqUWsTpLMSjL9_TFasFwcJSMBcg7VlutY
How’s this for an opening?
Section I. Purpose and Principles
Research involving potential pandemic pathogens (PPPs) is essential to protecting global health and security. However, there are biosafety and biosecurity risks associated with undertaking such research that must be adequately considered and appropriately mitigated in order to help safely realize the potential benefits. The HHS Framework for Guiding Funding Decisions about Proposed Research Involving Enhanced Potential Pandemic Pathogens (HHS P3CO Framework) is intended to guide HHS funding decisions on individual proposed research that is reasonably anticipated to create, transfer, or use enhanced PPPs.
This HHS P3CO Framework is responsive to and in accordance with the Recommended Policy Guidance for Departmental Development of Review Mechanisms for Potential Pandemic Pathogen Care and Oversight issued by OSTP on January 9, 20171 and supersedes the previous Framework for Guiding Department of Health and Human Services Funding Decisions about Research Proposals with the Potential for Generating Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza H5N1 Viruses that are Transmissible among Mammals by Respiratory Droplets 2.
The HHS P3CO Framework ensures a multidisciplinary, department-level pre-funding review and evaluation of proposed research meeting the scope outlined herein to help inform funding agency decisions. In so doing, the HHS P3CO Framework seeks to preserve the benefits of life sciences research involving enhanced PPPs while minimizing potential biosafety and biosecurity risks.
Again, do I really need to spell it out for you?
This work is DANGEROUS! This is not science fiction. These are documents from our government. They admit, “Hey! we might be creating new bird flu viruses that can spread to humans by respiratory droplets (known as ‘sneezing or coughing’ to you and me)!”
And if you’re wondering to yourself, what is the actual definition of a “Potential Pandemic Pathogen”, they were kind enough to provide it in section 2.
Section II. Scope and Definitions
For the purposes of this HHS P3CO Framework:
A. A potential pandemic pathogen (PPP) is a pathogen that satisfies both of the following:
1. It is likely highly transmissible and likely capable of wide and uncontrollable spread in human populations; and
2. It is likely highly virulent and likely to cause significant morbidity and/or mortality in humans.
B. An enhanced PPP is defined as a PPP resulting from the enhancement of the transmissibility and/or virulence of a pathogen. Enhanced PPPs do not include naturally occurring pathogens that are circulating in or have been recovered from nature, regardless of their pandemic potential.
I’ve given you the evidence. None of that is a theory.
It’s common for attorneys to take evidence and create their own narrative of what they believe happened. We do it because we know human beings lie, especially if they think they might get in trouble for telling the truth.
We do not believe in the existence of Homo Scientificus, that mythical being incapable of lying that the mainstream media seems to believe exists underneath the white lab coat of every scientist and doctor.
Here’s my take:
Scientists created an enhanced coronavirus which was capable of affecting humans, particularly their respiratory tract. The lab mice they tested it on showed evidence of infection, but since they probably weren’t using old mice, they missed how this new virus might cause severe problems in the elderly population.
I also think it’s likely China stole the virus, took it to their labs, and then because they don’t have good containment, it got out.
Then the governments of China and the west have a mutual interest in saying, “Hey, we don’t know where this came from!” Some mutual recriminations between China and the west ensue to keep the news networks busy by creating the appearance of conflict, but neither side is going to escalate by letting the actual truth get out.
I agree we all need to follow the precautions set out by President Trump…
…but when the emergency passes (as it will), we need a full accounting of this situation.
Personally, I think the two men that Trump should immediately fire are Dr. Francis Collins, head of the National Institutes of Health, and Dr. Tony Fauci, head of the Lab of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. These are the two men I believe are most culpable in the outbreak of this disease, as well as the cover-up of how it started.
After they are fired, Trump needs to convene a Blue Ribbon panel of scientists NOT LINKED to this current fiasco, and get to the bottom of these questions.
We KNOW members of the White House staff read Bolen Report, so if you want suggestions of names for people to serve on the panel, we’d be happy to provide them.
Opinion by Kent Heckenlively, JD