Amid the questions about COVID-19's origin and lab research are questions about the self-appointed global health groups addressing the pandemic. According to a recent video blog by a Canadian citizen journalist who goes by the name "Amazing Polly," global health groups operate as a Mafia, shamelessly using extortion and protection to achieve their goals.1
According to Polly, even though global health groups have nongovernmental organization "NGO names," they are actually Mafia-like families answering to a "don." The groups use threatening and coercive techniques to "cripple nation states and at the same time, of course, enrich themselves." Their actions are especially apparent during the COVID-19 pandemic.
In Mafia protection racket schemes, people will pay extortion money when they are convinced bad things can or will happen. The same phenomenon is now seen with governments that might have been skeptical about an imminent pandemic until the arrival of COVID-19 and now want to pay for preparedness, says Polly.
$8 Billion Raised in 2.5 Hours
One example of the Mafia-like pressure that is foisted on governments was in evidence at a May 4, 2020, Coronavirus Global Response pledging event hosted by European Commission President Ursula Von der Leyen.2 During the pledge drive, a string of world leaders agreed that their countries would fund the global coronavirus response while sounding "like they were reading hostage notes," says Polly.
One after another in video clips, the leaders of Slovenia, Oman, Monaco, Italy, South Africa, Israel, Sweden, Portugal, Estonia, Switzerland, Finland and Romania deliver wooden and identical statements about the need for "treatments, diagnostics and vaccines" for COVID-19. They sound like robots or, as Polly observes, hostages.
In just 2.5 hours, the "captured nation states" deliver $8 billion for a coronavirus global response funded by taxpayers. Worse, the funds do not go to a neutral party for disbursement but go directly to foundations, vaccine makers and front groups who are self-dealing for enrichment and power.
What Is the National Academy of Medicine?
The National Academy of Medicine (NAM), known as the Institute of Medicine until 2015, is headed by Dr. Victor Dzau, who anchored the Coronavirus Global Response pledging event and wears many public health hats at global organizations and universities.
Though NAM appears to be a government agency and in many respects commands comparable power, it is actually an NGO, notes Polly. Moreover, the NGO NAM is a "foundation funded by foundations."
In keeping with the analogy of NGOs serving as a don's family, the funders of the NAM include the "usual suspects" — high-level industry players with worldwide agendas. They include the Rockefeller Foundation, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF), the Wellcome Trust, the World Economic Forum, the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation and Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation.
Mainstream media are known to give favorable coverage to the NGOs and can work closely with them. At the annual meeting of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) in April 2020, which encompasses NAM, Dr. Sanjay Gupta of CNN appeared as a presenter and "offered lessons from his experience reporting on COVID-19."3
While the usual, well-known global health organizations fund NAM, some of them also oversee its mission. The Rockefeller Foundation, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Unilever serve on NAM's oversight group. With its name change, NAM has also enlarged its scope. According to its web page:4
"Although the National Academies were originally created to advise the U.S. government and advance the well-being of the U.S. population, our mandate is now much broader. The NAM includes members from across the globe and partners with organizations worldwide to address challenges that affect us all …
We identify and generate momentum around critical issues in health; marshal diverse expertise to build evidence-based solutions; inspire action through collaboration and public engagement; and foster the next generation of leaders and innovators."
NAM Works With All the Usual Suspects
Despite the reported origination of COVID-19 in China and the country's disingenuousness about the virus, relations between the countries are still friendly at the NGO level. For example, George Gao, director-general of the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, also spoke at the April NAS/NAM conference, according to the National Acadamies press release.5
"'Early and active case detection is very important, especially at the community level,' he said. Asked whether China is expecting a second wave, Gao said they would have to wait and see, later noting prevention strategies the country is taking as it resumes business and social activity. 'We’ve got to 'dance' with the virus, there’s no choice,' he said."
The consensus of the conference attendants was the urgent need for a vaccine against COVID-19, according to the press release.6
"The only way to ultimately stop the virus from spreading and to prevent its future resurgence is with a vaccine, said National Academy of Medicine President and panel moderator Victor Dzau, an assessment echoed by multiple other panelists."
The Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI)
The Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations is a huge player in the coronavirus global response and vaccine initiatives and was in attendance at the conference.7 CEPI already has 107 active COVID-19 vaccine development programs around the world.
According to remarks at a World Economic Forum event from British journalist Minton Beddoes, CEPI is a collaboration between governments, foundations and the private sector. Players include the Gates Foundation, the World Economic Forum, the Wellcome Trust, the governments of Norway, Germany, Japan and India and the Pharma companies GSK, Merck, Johnson & Johnson, Sanofi, Takeda and Pfizer.8
"We want to make sure that the world has access to those vaccines, and that access to vaccines is not just concentrated in a few nations,” said CEPI CEO Richard Hatchett at the NAS annual meeting, an apparent homage to CEPI's six Pharma members.9
Jeremy Farrar, director of the Wellcome Trust, stressed at the meeting that the vaccine initiative requires a global partnership. "We do live in a tense world, and we live in a slightly polarized world and our job as scientists is to bring people together," he said. Whether the work is happening in China or at NIH, it is all linked at a scientific level, he stated.10
The Global Preparedness Monitoring Board, Another Family
The same, few organizations are behind almost all the global health programs and especially those addressing the COVID-19 pandemic, says Polly. The Global Preparedness Monitoring Board (GPMB) is a case in point.11
It is a front organization that "made itself a seemingly independent organization so when the public hears it they're not going to think 'oh, that's the World Health Organization again; that's the World Bank again?'" says Polly. Yet it is synonymous with both groups.
Commensurate with the Mafia analogy, the GPMB's board members include Dzau, Dr. Chris Elias, who is president of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation's Global Development Division, Gao and Dr. Anthony Fauci. Its funders include the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Wellcome Trust, the government of Germany and a less well-known group, Resolve to Save Lives.
Resolve to Save Lives appears to be yet another foundation funded by foundations. According to its web site, it is funded by "Bloomberg Philanthropies, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Gates Philanthropy Partners, which is funded with support from the Chan Zuckerberg Foundation."12
GPMB has worked closely with Johns Hopkins, which hosted the pandemic preparedness exercise Event 201 in 2019. According to the Center for Health Security:13
"The Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security in partnership with the World Economic Forum and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation hosted Event 201, a high-level pandemic exercise on October 18, 2019, in New York, NY.
The exercise illustrated areas where public/private partnerships will be necessary during the response to a severe pandemic in order to diminish large-scale economic and societal consequences."
One of the goals of the event, says Polly, was to get pandemic preparedness financed even when the panic of an actual pandemic was not at hand.
Questions About the Pandemic
There are many questions about the origin of COVID-19 and whether the U.S. government and the Chinese government are telling the truth. Both governments admit that they have been studying dangerous pathogens like bat coronaviruses at China's Wuhan Virology Lab, Wuhan Center for Disease Control and Prevention and the U.S. Army Biological Weapons Lab in Fort Detrick, Maryland.
What they don't admit to is manipulating or weaponizing the bat viruses. Yet the U.S. funded "gain of function" virus experiments in China's Wuhan lab, which are tantamount to experiments manipulating and weaponizing viruses. Worse, some of the money that funded Wuhan virus experiments14 came from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, which Fauci directs.
The experiments on bat viruses at the Wuhan Labs were also aided by the Galveston National Laboratory at the University of Texas Medical Branch.15 The experiments persisted in China even after such virus enhancement experiments were banned in the U.S. Chinese researchers at the Wuhan Labs admit they developed ways for SARS-like viruses to gain entry into human cells.16
Other Disturbing Red Flags
Also disturbing was the fact that news stories questioning China's official explanations of the COVID-19 outbreak were censored. According to the New York Post in April 2020, some stories were dubbed "False Information" on Facebook and unreadable when users tried to share them with others.17 But at least one Facebook “fact checker” who was supposed to be “outing” false information was false herself.18
Danielle E. Anderson, assistant professor, Duke-NUS Medical School in Singapore, who had previously been a paid researcher at the Wuhan lab, and who regularly worked with Wuhan’s researchers, showed that she had plenty of conflicts of interest when she was busy “fact checking” posts that criticized or questioned the lab’s work. Of course, she attested to the lab’s “strict control and containment measures” as she ruled posts that criticized the lab as “false.”
There are also questions about Dr. Robert Redfield, CDC director, and Dr. Deborah Birx, members of the White House's Coronavirus Task Force. According to Robert Kennedy Jr.:19
"In 1992, two military investigators charged Redfield & Birx with engaging in 'a systematic pattern of data manipulation, inappropriate statistical analyses & misleading data presentation in an apparent attempt to promote the usefulness of the GP160 AIDS vaccine.'
A subsequent Air Force tribunal on Scientific Fraud and Misconduct agreed that Redfield’s 'misleading or, possibly, deceptive' information 'seriously threatens his credibility as a researcher and has the potential to negatively impact AIDS research funding for military institutions as a whole.'"
Beware the Global Health Mafia
It is clear from Polly's research that many global health foundations and front groups are using Mafia-like tactics to further their goals. The "Davos Set," as she calls them, are exploiting worldwide panic over the COVID-19 pandemic for their own self-dealing, self-enrichment and power. The $8 billion they raised at the coronavirus global response pledge event in April is a case in point.
Red flags about media censorship coupled with the Mafia-like operations of foundations and vaccine makers in addressing the pandemic should make us all wary of the global health establishment.
COVID-19 has sparked fear and panic across the world. Every day, the news is reporting the number of individuals who have likely died from the infection. True to the need to report negative news, they are talking about the thousands who have died, but not the hundreds of thousands who have survived the infection.
The virus is virulent and indeed killing people. But there are far, far more who survive it with minor to moderate symptoms and don't require hospitalization or supportive care. In an effort to "flatten the curve," or reduce the number who get infected in a short period of time, many countries have created quarantine rules, shelter-in-place edicts and social distancing recommendations.
State governors across the U.S. have declared a state of emergency, which gives them additional powers under state law. According to the National Governors Association, state governors usually1 "are responsible for implementing state laws and overseeing the operation of the state executive branch."
The declaration of a state of emergency opens the door for a number of different actions and added authority unique to each state.2 According to public health experts from The Ohio State University:3
"Before getting federal assistance, the governor must declare a state of emergency and begin to follow the state's emergency plan, a provision which emphasizes that the state is the primary authority in the disaster. That is important because emergency powers not only allow state governments to 'provide for' populations, but also 'decide for' individuals in ways that might limit their rights.
The idea is that sticking to normal legislative processes and legal standards takes time – and that during a crisis delays could cost lives. In an outbreak, such limits on individual rights involve travel restrictions, social distancing measures and isolation and quarantine.
In the case of COVID-19, the Department of Health and Human Services, using the federal Public Health Services Act, invoked federal powers to prevent 'cascading public health, economic, national security and societal consequences.' In addition to this, federal authority empowers the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to examine and quarantine anyone entering the U.S. or traveling across state lines."
Police Following Rules With Unreasonable Force
Although changes may have helped reduce the initial spread of the virus, how some are implementing the rules look more like the dawn of martial law. This is ironic, considering we are a country that proudly proclaims itself to be the "land of the free and the home of the brave."
For example, Twitter user CJ Pearson4 posted a video on May 14, 2020, showing at least six police officers in New York City physically taking down one small mother. The video is disturbing and clearly shows her exiting the subway station with a mask around her neck and her young child in tow.
The officers surrounded her and forced her back up the stairs into the subway station. At one point they grabbed her and three forced her to the ground with her face against the floor. One officer held her young child within feet of her mother being taken to the floor. Four officers surrounded the woman while attempting to put on a pair of handcuffs as she's lying on the ground.
She squirmed and continued to yell at the officers to leave her alone and to get off her. As they escort her from the station, a bystander yelled to the officers to take her child with her. The video was retweeted 14,300 times. One person commented, "Wow. This is scary! Reminds me of the videos in Wuhan of cops dragging people out of their homes. I thought we were better than this."
Another tweeted, "As a NYC Realtor, I can't physically show a property because #Coronavirus. But #NYPD puts her face down on dirty @MTA floor while others touch her child with dirty gloves? That's OK?"
This isn't the first video coming out of New York and not the only city reeling under the enforcement of regulations, rules or statements that citizens must practice social distancing and wear a mask. A video circulated showing an off-duty officer in Alabama who was caught on camera body slamming a shopper to the floor at Walmart.5
The person walked into the store and refused to wear a mask. At the time, Walmart was simply encouraging their customers to wear them, but they weren't required.6 She became irritated when an employee asked her to put on a face covering. When she refused to leave, an off-duty officer who was working for Walmart at the time tried to detain her.
As shown in the video, she pushed away as he tried to handcuff her. At this point he grabbed her left leg out from under her and flipped her to the floor. Sergeant Rod Mauldin later said the officer felt he needed to gain control of the woman because of "other threat factors in the store."
The threats were not detailed, and the video shows only a second woman standing aside and yelling at the officer. As the officer was escorting her out of the store, two of her friends began arguing with him. The video shows him pulling out a canister and appearing to mace them.7
These are two of many incidents that have happened across the U.S. and around the world. While it may be necessary for the police to implement the rules and regulations, it's not necessary to do it with unreasonable force.
Liquor Stores Are Essential as Drive-In Churches Bullied
Some states are taking extreme measures against specific groups. In Greenville, Mississippi, the city government categorized liquor stores as essential. This allows them to provide curbside service to their customers.8 But, churches were not allowed to hold services when those attending stayed in their cars with the windows up.
In other words, liquor was being handed through open car windows to drivers who were not wearing masks, but church goers were bullied by police officers for being parked in the church parking lot with their windows up. Pastor James Hamilton spoke with Fox News reporter Tucker Carlson about the situation he and his churchgoers found themselves in on the Thursday before Easter.9
The parishioners were lined up in the parking lot, in their cars with the windows up. The pastor had also asked the parishioners to park their cars away from each other, a practice not in place at grocery stores or hardware stores. He was preaching from outside the cars when 20 or more police cars arrived to surround the six cars in the parking lot.
Kelly Shackelford from the First Liberty Institute, a civil rights group that came to the aid of the church, commented on the new regulations in Greenville, saying they were targeting "churches in a way that it targets no other groups. Cars in the parking lot are fine. It's only a crime if the cars in the parking lot are in the church parking lot."
He went on to recount how one police officer approached the pastor and told him because of the new local orders in Greenville, his rights were "suspended." However, Shackelford said that individuals' constitutional rights have not been suspended by the new orders. Hamilton shared it was Mayor Errick Simmons who was behind the order.
The Justice Department backed the lawsuit filed by the church and the suit is pending. Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear ordered police to take down the license plates of anyone parked in a church lot to enforce an additional 14-day quarantine.10 U.S District Judge Justin Walker wrote a 20-page opinion in which he commented the city must stop:
"… enforcing; attempting to enforce; threatening to enforce; or otherwise requiring compliance with any prohibition on drive-in church services at On Fire.
On Holy Thursday, an American mayor criminalized the communal celebration of Easter. That sentence is one that this Court never expected to see outside the pages of a dystopian novel, or perhaps the pages of The Onion."
Abuse of Power Strips Civil Rights
This video is disturbing but illustrates infractions happening around the world:
Human rights infractions are happening worldwide, and the United Nations' human rights chief has issued a warning to governments that are abusing their power, saying,11 "the rule of law in the name of fighting the novel coronavirus pandemic risk [is] sparking a 'human rights disaster.'"
Emergencies have been declared in 80 countries. The UN has highlighted 15 where infractions are troubling, but the director of field operations said several dozen more could have been added. The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet is asking countries to cease violating fundamental human rights. She warned:12
"Emergency powers should not be a weapon governments can wield to quash dissent, control the population, and even perpetuate their time in power. They should be used to cope effectively with the pandemic - nothing more, nothing less."
Tens of thousands of people have been detained and arrested, violating confinement measures to curtail the pandemic. The Philippines was at the top of the list with 120,000 people arrested in 30 days. In South Africa, reports of police using rubber bullets, tear gas and whips were received by the UN. Additional charges against the police included rape, murder, the use of firearms and corruption.
Virus Fuels Potentially Permanent Surveillance Protocols
China, long known for their use of technology to invade the rights of their citizens, has dramatically increased its data collection after the outbreak of SARS-CoV-2. As they pursue gathering more data, in the name of curtailing the pandemic, the government has released a number of new tactics to monitor and track potential cases.
There is much concern that the pandemic has strengthened the country's case for collecting data on their citizens — and that the data harvest will be permanent. In the past months China began using futuristic technology, such as:13
- Using drones to watch which people are using masks or going indoors
- Measuring people's temperatures using new facial recognition software
- Using software to identify individuals based on body and face structure, even under masks
- Using phone data to check who has been close to a person who tested positive for COVID-19
- Using police helmets with cameras fitted with facial recognition and thermal software to identify and quarantine people with a fever
Citizens are also being required to download an app that uses information from their Alibaba account to estimate health and risk of contagion; the information is then shared with the police.
Experts fear the data collection will continue after the public health threat is gone. This type of surveillance already exists in the Northwestern region of China where the state feels they are under threat by religious extremism. Maya Wang is a senior researcher at China's Human Rights Watch. She spoke to Business Insider, saying:14
"The use of these systems is taking place without privacy law or surveillance law that effectively protects people's privacy rights, to allow them to challenge such designation or the imposition of quarantine."
Darren Byler is a technology expert who specializes in China's Xinjiang region. He commented on the use of technology to monitor people, warning:15
"Once you have the tools in place, you'd probably continue to use them, and you can expand them and use them for other purposes. From the US context, the PATRIOT Act, Homeland Security, and countering violent extremist programs that the US put in place initially after 9/11 were focused on Muslim Americans, but have now been radically expanded to look at asylum seekers of all types, like people coming across the southern border into the US.
Once these systems are in place, once things are built, once they're designed — you can't put them back in the box, and once political leaders see the utility of them and see that they can extend their power, extend their control, then of course they will continue to use them and use them in new ways."
Bill Gates has built a global empire around his technologies and “philanthropic” endeavors. His sheer wealth has allowed him to become a veritable superpower in his own right, rising to become the unelected global health tsar on COVID-19. Indeed, the World Health Organization and the White House pandemic response team even kowtows to his nonexistent medical expertise.
Life cannot and will not go back to normal until we can vaccinate the entire global population, Gates says, and that same sentiment is being echoed from government leaders and health authorities around the world. Never mind the fact that actual scientists and medical researchers are finding all sorts of simple, inexpensive and safe strategies to address this illness.
But vaccinating the global population isn’t enough, in Gates’ eyes. We must also implement surveillance of infection and vaccination status. Not surprisingly, Gates’ recommendations benefit himself most of all.
As discussed in “Bill Gates — Most Dangerous Philanthropist in Modern History?” the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation donates billions to the very same companies and industries that the Foundation owns stocks and bonds in.
Using nonprofit money to advance research for companies you're invested in is illegal, yet he’s been getting away with this for many years. At the same time, his Foundation gets tax breaks for the charitable donations it makes money from. Remember, he has “donated” tens of billions, yet his net worth has doubled. This is largely because his “donations” are tax deductible investments.
Pandemic Fear-Mongering Pays Off for Tech Companies
While unemployment has reached a historical high during this pandemic, the financial crush is not felt by some. In fact, Gates and other tech billionaires are cashing in big, in a variety of different ways.
In a May 8, 2020, article1 in The Intercept, Naomi Klein reports on how New York is tasking Gates with reinventing the state’s “post-Covid reality, with an emphasis on permanently integrating technology into every aspect of civic life.”
May 6, 2020, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced the state is partnering with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to develop “a smarter education system” focused on online learning. This, despite the fact that the Common Core curriculum — the Gates Foundation’s previous attempt at remaking American education2 — has been an abysmal failure.3
The state is also partnering with Google, and Cuomo has asked former Google CEO Eric Schmidt to head a new panel to plan the state’s technological infrastructure.4 Schmidt joined Cuomo during a briefing, saying “The first priorities … are focused on telehealth, remote learning and broadband …” As noted by Klein:5
“It has taken some time to gel, but something resembling a coherent pandemic shock doctrine is beginning to emerge.
Call it the Screen New Deal. Far more hi-tech than anything we have seen during previous disasters, the future that is being rushed into being as the bodies still pile up treats our past weeks of physical isolation not as a painful necessity to save lives, but as a living laboratory for a permanent — and highly profitable — no-touch future …
It’s a future in which our homes are never again exclusively personal spaces, but are also, via high-speed digital connectivity, our schools, our doctor’s offices, our gyms, and, if determined by the state, our jails …
It’s a future in which our every move, our every word, our every relationship is trackable, traceable and data-mineable by unprecedented collaborations between government and tech giants.
If all of this sounds familiar, it’s because, pre-Covid, this precise app-driven, gig-fueled future was being sold to us in the name of friction-free convenience and personalization. But many of us had concerns …
Today, a great many of those well-founded concerns are being swept away by a tidal wave of panic, and this warmed-over dystopia is going through a rush-job rebranding.
Now, against a harrowing backdrop of mass death, it is being sold to us on the dubious promise that these technologies are the only possible way to pandemic-proof our lives, the indispensable keys to keeping ourselves and our loved ones safe …
At the heart of this vision is seamless integration of government with a handful of Silicon Valley giants — with public schools, hospitals, doctor’s offices, police and military all outsourcing (at a high cost) many of their core functions to private tech companies.”
In her article — which is well worth reading in its entirety — Klein reviews how Schmidt and Gates have been working and pushing toward the future that is now staring us square in the face, and how the surveillance apparatus that consumers have been railing against is now being rebranded as the answer to everyone’s health concerns.
In a May 6, 2020, article, Vox’s Theodore Schleifer weighed in on Cuomo’s decision to hand over the proverbial keys to the state to tech billionaires whose philanthropy always ends up benefiting themselves the most:6
“Details are scarce about exactly how much power these groups will have beyond issuing recommendations or whether their work will be public. But Gates could suddenly have the ability to recommend what types of things are taught to the state’s students in a ‘reimagined’ system.
Schmidt could encourage the state to significantly embrace remote health care services that could be controversial. While both have been successful business leaders, the concern would mirror the broader criticism of billionaire philanthropy: that this ‘help’ offers a few wealthy people some undemocratic influence over American public policy.”
Schmidt Futures Wants to Make Private Data Public
While less visible than Gates, Schmidt can hardly be trusted any more than Gates. Schmidt Futures — Eric and Wendy Schmidt’s philanthropic initiative, which “seeks to improve societal outcomes through the thoughtful development of emerging science and technologies that can benefit humanity”7 — admits that one of its approaches is to “liberate private data with a public purpose.”8
Clearly, infection status falls into a category of private data that is now rebranded as having a “public purpose.” As noted on its website:9
“There is a tremendous opportunity to use data collected by the private sector to solve societal challenges, and in doing so create the platforms needed to reach people at scale. Examples of data types include mobile, social media, e-commerce, remote sensing/satellite, and sensor data. Advances in data science and machine learning are increasing our capacity to use and interpret these data.”
‘Unaccountable Monopolists’ Replace Elected Representatives
In a May 14, 2020, Guardian article, Zephyr Teachout and Pat Garofalo comment:10
“Even if Schmidt and Gates had good policies, Cuomo’s knighting of them is offensive to American self-government. Nobody voted for them and they are accountable to no one. Cuomo, often accused of being too close to big campaign donors, is tripling down: he is simply allowing billionaires to plan our future directly, taking out the middlemen.
In case you had any doubt that this is a new form of government worming its way into our old democratic ways, Cuomo anointed these tsars at the exact same time that he took vast new powers away from the state legislature,11 which has not been holding regular legislative hearings since 1 April …
Turning away from locally-elected representatives, and towards billionaires with no accountability, represents a terrible erosion of democratic decision-making: Cuomo is quite literally replacing elected representatives with private, unaccountable monopolists. And too many other lawmakers across the U.S. are doing the same thing.”
The Gates, Soros and Clinton Contact Tracing Group
Whether preplanned or not, the COVID-19 pandemic is clearly being used to usher in highly controversial changes that are unmistakably totalitarian-building, including the private take-over of government through public-private partnerships.
Contact tracing serves as a convenient bridge12 for this hostile takeover parading as “aid.” Not only is Big Tech offering up contact tracing apps, self-serving billionaires are also funding contact tracing groups that will provide “boots on the ground” services.
For example, Partners in Health — the group selected by Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker to conduct COVID-19 contact tracing using teams of investigators to interview people who test positive — is funded by Gates and one of the richest men in the world, George Soros. The William J. Clinton Foundation has also funded Partners in Health in the past.13
Chelsey Clinton sits on its board of trustees, and one of the group’s co-founders, Jim Kim, spent three years at the WHO14 and is currently the president of the World Bank. He rejoined Partners in Health’s board of directors in January 2019.15
UK Demands Answers About COVID Data Deal
Meanwhile, on the other side of the pond, OpenDemocracy and the tech start-up Foxglove are demanding the U.K. government share the details of its patient data deals with Big Tech. In a May 7, 2020, post, OpenDemocracy.net writes:16
“Outside of the horrific death toll, perhaps the most far-reaching global consequence of the pandemic is the rapid expansion of surveillance in our daily lives. In the name of beating back the pandemic, governments around the world are giving tech giants extensive access to valuable stores of health data.
Britain is no different. On 28 March, a blog17 quietly appeared on the website of the cherished National Health Service. It announced what might be the largest handover of NHS patient data to private corporations in history.
U.S. tech giants Amazon, Microsoft, and Google — plus two controversial AI films called Faculty and Palantir — are apparently assisting the NHS in tracking hospital resources and in providing a ‘single source of truth’ about the epidemic, in order to stem its spread.”
While the amount of British health data being shared with these companies has been described as “unprecedented,” the U.K. government has yet to release the details about the partnership.
Suspiciously, Palantir is reportedly providing its COVID-19 Datastore services to the NHS for just £1.18 This despite the fact that its services are estimated to cost around £88,000 a week, and that’s just for salaries.19 How and why is Palantir giving away its services for free? The old adage, “There’s no such thing as a free lunch” seems applicable here.
OpenDemocracy also questions how the artificial intelligence (AI) startup Faculty has managed to land seven different government contracts worth nearly £1 million in the last 18 months.20
“We have laws in Britain which mean journalists and members of the public can access information about such deals, so that they can answer precisely these sorts of questions. But now the UK government is acting as though these laws no longer apply,” OpenDemocracy writes.
UK Government Ignores FOIA Request
Foxglove submitted Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests to the U.K. government on April 3, 2020. A reply is required within 20 working days, yet no response has been forthcoming. The British Information Commissioner’s Office, the independent regulator responsible for FOIA enforcement, has announced21 it has relaxed enforcement for the duration of the pandemic crisis.
That seems suspiciously convenient, considering deals are being made in secret that shouldn’t be, and panic is being drummed up without much real-world data to support the narrative that we’re still in a high-risk situation.22
“Although the wording of the announcement was vague, it risks leaving the public with no practical way to hold the government to account — indefinitely,” OpenDemocracy states, adding:
“We have given the UK government until 11 May to release the information requested about these massive COVID data deals. If they fail to do so, we will consider seeking answers in the courts.
The public urgently needs to know not only how their personal information is being traded, and who has access to it. But also whether this pandemic means that our rights to ask questions, and to scrutinize the actions of our leaders, are fundamentally compromised. COVID-19 cannot be an excuse for governments and corporations to avoid accountability.”
Tech Initiative Seeks to Alter Global Behavior
Anyone still living under the misguided spell that governments’ responses to this pandemic are simply temporary emergency measures need to rapidly reassess. As reported by Vox,23 tech billionaires like Gates and Schmidt are hard at work trying to convince governments and the public at large that only they can save us from another pandemic.
Such is the focus of the Pandemic Action Network, responsible for the #MaskingForAFriend Twitter campaign, pushed by Hillary Clinton and other celebrities.24
“… the #MaskingForAFriend campaign … seeks to change personal behavior. But its more important ambition is to change government behavior,” Vox writes.
“This initiative is one of the more forward-looking attempts from philanthropy to shape what the world looks like after the crisis, and one of the few focused on political advocacy. The push is small for now, with just $1.5 million in initial cash from Schmidt Futures, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and other backers.
But the Pandemic Action Network aims to lead a pressure campaign that shapes the policy debate, a debate that will be at the fore of the next wave of pandemic response efforts.”
Digital Health Passports Coming to 15 Nations
A lead-in to global totalitarianism, predicated on protecting public health and preventing another pandemic, is the issuance of “digital health passports.” According to the British tech magazine Verdict,25 coronavirus digital health passports are now being supplied to 15 nations.
The passport is “designed to make it easier for individuals to return to work after the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic” — as if we’ve never been able to return to normal life after any other epidemic or pandemic scare. In a May 11, 2020, article Verdict reports:26
“These countries will include Italy, Portugal, France, Panama, India, the U.S., Canada, Sweden, Spain, South Africa, Mexico, United Arab Emirates and The Netherlands, with the goal of supplying 50 million digital health passports … The Covi-pass27 will work using a color system of green, amber, red to indicate whether the individual has tested positive or negative for Covid-19 and relevant health information.
Firstly, the user downloads the app and enters key information such as name, address, age and verifies their identity using their fingerprint or a facial scan.
They then take a Covid-19 test, administered by an authorized healthcare professional, and the results are scanned into the Covi-pass. They can then use the digital health passport to authenticate their health status to enable ‘a safe return to work, life, and safe travel.’”
According to Covipass.com,28 the app will display “your COVID-19 test history and immunoresponse and other relevant health information.”
As I’ve stated before, a RT-PCR (reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction) test result is basically worthless, since a) it merely detects the presence of SARS-CoV-2 genetic material, not the actual virus, and b) you can get infected at any time after you get your test results, rendering the “verification” of your infection status null and void.
According to a recent speech by U.S. President Donald Trump, his administration is mobilizing the military to distribute the vaccine once ready, which could be as early as the end of 2020.
At the same time, the U.S. Senate has voted to renew federal surveillance powers that would otherwise have expired,29 and an ill-named bill, HR 6666, would put the government in charge of COVID-19 tracking and tracing, costing taxpayers a whopping $100 billion.30
Virus Surveillance and Civil Liberties Collide
As predicted in a Law360 article31 published April 26, 2020, virus surveillance is now colliding head-on with civil liberties:
“Imagine your phone buzzing with an alert: Someone who passed you at the grocery store has tested positive for COVID-19. Based on location data transmitted through a smart phone app, authorities believe the stranger exposed you to the coronavirus. You might be infected.
The alert directs you to self-quarantine for 14 days to prevent further spread of the deadly disease. In the app, a map of color-coded dots displays the population of your home town. You notice the dot associated with you, previously green, has turned to yellow — now everyone else with the app knows you could be dangerous.
Whether the scenario sounds Orwellian or absolutely necessary could depend on your answer to a rhetorical question Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, recently posed during a live Snapchat interview. ‘Do you give up a little liberty to get a little protection?’ he said.”
The answer to that question should be a resounding “no.” The idea that government can keep you safe against a virus by giving up your civil liberties is a fantasy that must be outgrown. As noted by CNN Business:32
“It took the attacks of September 11, 2001 to shove aside the previous decade's phobia of mass surveillance, and usher in an era where many of us imagined the state was probably skimming our emails, in exchange for keeping us safe from terror.
Over the next 15 years, billions of people agreed to a tacit deal where Facebook or Google were permitted to learn a staggering amount about them in exchange for free access to messaging apps, news, and shared pictures … Eventually, that mutated into the heights exemplified by Cambridge Analytica — private companies hoovering up the online lives of tens of millions in order to try to sway elections.
But the challenge presented by Covid-19 — and the urgent need to trace contacts and movements — is of another scale of intimacy … Technology is again claiming the mantle of the savior … embedding into our phones anonymous methods of knowing who we may have infected and when … If they become ubiquitous, where does this new scrutiny end? … Will we look back at 2020 as the moment privacy finally evaporated?”
It’s time to fully recognize that surveillance has become the biggest for-profit industry on the planet, and your entire existence is now being targeted for profit.
For a better understanding of what you’re giving up by going along with the mainstream narrative that we need Big Tech to save us, see my article about social psychologist and Harvard professor Shoshana Zuboff and her extraordinary book, "The Age of Surveillance Capitalism."
We are repeatedly told that COVID-19 originated from a wild animal at the Huanan Seafood Market in Wuhan, China, and that it is a natural mutation of a bat virus. But the hard evidence contradicts this theory.
Did COVID-19 Start in the Huanan Seafood Market?
There is evidence that the first confirmed COVID-19 hospital patient had no contact with the Huanan Seafood Market, and only a few of the next few patients had contact with the market, which would rule out the possibility that the market was the original source of the virus.
The graph below comes from a peer-reviewed scientific paper published in The Lancet. The first recorded incidence of a COVID-19 symptomatic patient being admitted to a hospital occurred December 1, 2019.1 This patient had no contact with the seafood market.
Nine days later, on December 10, 2019, three more patients were admitted to the hospital, two of whom had had no contact with the seafood market. One patient had contact with the market. Five days later, two more people were reported sick after being at the market; however, others who had had no contact with the market continued to be admitted to hospitals. This data clearly shows that the Huanan Seafood Market was not the original source of COVID-19.
The virus (called 2019-nCoV then and now called SARS-CoV-2) was circulating in the Wuhan community for at least nine days before the first reported case of a patient who had had contact with the market. The market cluster most likely came from an infected person visiting the market, and infecting stall holders and customers because of its crowded conditions.
The market was closed down January 1, 2020, and cleaned out with bleach to contain this disease. This effectively destroyed any chance of determining if there were infected animals as claimed by the Chinese government, the World Health Organization and others. However, as the virus was circulating in Wuhan before the first cases occurred in the market, closing down the market did not stop this pandemic.
While the virus was spreading throughout Wuhan, and people seriously ill with a new form of pneumonia were going to hospitals, the Chinese government was jailing the doctors who were warning others about this disease.
The government was also telling the world that there was no evidence of human-to-human transmission, instead insisting that this was a rare disease that came directly from animals and that could not be passed from person to person — which we now know to be a lie.
A paper published February 6, 2020, by two Chinese researchers showed that there were no bats in the seafood market and that the only bats and bat viruses in Wuhan were at the Wuhan Center for Disease Control & Prevention and Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV).
This paper stated that the most likely source of COVID-19 was an accident at one of these labs, and that more research should be undertaken to determine if an accident at the lab was to blame for the pandemic. The Chinese government used pressure to have this paper withdrawn, deleted and suppressed, and the researchers silenced.
However in the interest of transparency and freedom of speech, we are providing a link to the original paper as we managed to save a copy before the Chinese government tried to delete it.2
SARS-CoV-2, the name of the virus that causes COVID-19, has not been found in the wild. Its nearest relative, RaTG13, was collected from bats by WIV researchers in 2013, in Yunnan Province, about 1,000 miles away from Wuhan.
RaTG13 was stored in Wuhan at WIV. However, there was no record of it in the scientific literature or in gene banks until January 23, 2020, when Shi Zhengli, director of the Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases, and others at WIV published that RaTG13 was 96.2 percent similar to SARS-CoV-2.3
The prevailing theory is that an intermediate animal, such as a pangolin, was infected by the bat coronavirus, and the virus mutated in the pangolin before infecting humans. However, at this stage, there is no evidence of SARS-CoV-2 being found in any wild animal.
Several close relatives of SARS-CoV-2 have been found in bats; however, these viruses do not contain the same spike protein found in SARS-CoV-2 that gives the virus the ability to infect humans. The spike protein in SARS-CoV-2 is unique and is different from the spike proteins in other coronaviruses. It has not been found in any other coronaviruses, including RaTG13.
The virus closest to containing a section of spike protein nearly identical to a section of SARS-CoV-2 was found by researchers in one Malayan Pangolin out of a group of 25 pangolins that were confiscated from smugglers at the Chinese boarder.4 However, the rest of this pangolin virus is quite different from SARS-CoV-2.
Several researchers have stated that SARS-CoV-2 is a result of the genetic recombination of part of the spike protein of the Malayan Pangolin coronavirus into RaTG13.5
It is unlikely that this recombination of two viruses happened naturally in the wild. The infected Malayan Pangolin was captured outside of China, probably thousands of miles away from Yunnan, where the only record of the bat virus RaTG13 has been found.
Given that only one out of 25 of the Malayan Pangolins had this virus, it shows that it is not a common virus and does not cause widespread infections in pangolins. RaTG13 has been found only in a few bats in one location in Yunnan, and nowhere else in the world. It is highly improbable that an extremely rare virus from an isolated area in Yunnan infected and mutated inside pangolins that were caught outside of China.
How did SARS-CoV-2 get this unique spike protein? The theory that these two viruses combined naturally, given that they are most likely separated by thousands of miles, lacks credibility. This may be a popular theory, but it has zero evidence.
Evidence SARS-CoV-2 May Have Come From a Laboratory in Wuhan
The Wuhan Institute of Virology has the largest collection of bat coronaviruses in the world, including RaTG13. WIV specializes in Gain-of-Function research. Gain-of-Function (GOF) research involves mutating viruses, bacteria and other microorganisms to enhance their ability to infect and cause diseases.
This can involve taking a harmless virus and manipulating it to infect and cause severe illnesses in other species, or making already-deadly diseases, such as the Spanish Flu or the plague, even deadlier.
This type of research has divided the scientific community with many scientists warning that if one of these enhanced diseases escaped it could cause a global pandemic. The GOF researchers deny that these deadly organisms will escape. They state that this research is needed to protect us from pandemics by using it to make medications and vaccines.
After 30 years of research there is very little evidence of any benefit from GOF research — and many examples of these deadly disease organisms escaping from laboratories around the world, including China. GOF research certainly hasn’t helped with cures to stop the COVID-19 pandemic.
GOF research has been conducted on bat coronaviruses at the WIV since 2007. Researchers there have published several scientific papers showing how they have genetically modified harmless coronaviruses so they now can infect humans. They have been combining parts of two different viruses to make new viruses. Two papers of note were published about this in 2015 and 2017.
In 2015, Shi Zhengli from the WIV, and researchers at various universities and research institutions in the U.S. and Switzerland, published a paper explaining how they genetically modified the SARS coronavirus to create a dangerous synthetic virus.
The researchers took the genetic codes for part of the spike protein from a virus that Shi Zhengli isolated from bats found in Yunnan in 2011, and inserted them into the SARS coronavirus (the virus that caused the original SARS epidemic in 2002-2003).6
The spike protein is found on the top of the spike on coronaviruses. The viruses use this protein to attach to specific receptors in cells to infect them. Each species of animal tends to have unique receptors. This means that the virus has to have a unique spike protein that will bind to the specific receptor. It is a “lock-and-key” system. The spike protein is the same as the key and the receptor is the same as the lock. The wrong key will not open a lock.
Most of the spike proteins in coronaviruses found in animals will not infect people because their spike proteins are the wrong key to unlock the receptors on the cells. The only way coronaviruses from animals can infect people is if the viruses’ “keys” (spike proteins) are somehow modified to fit the humans’ “lock” (cell receptors).
This type of modification can happen through natural mutations, but usually only very slowly, and over many decades. However, spike proteins are being genetically modified in many laboratories around the world, as GOF research, to enable spike proteins to mutate at rates far faster and more frequently than can occur naturally.
This is part of the justification for GOF research: In order to study disease organisms, researchers modify them faster and more often than the organisms would modify on their own, in nature.
The synthetic coronavirus created in 2015 by WIV’s Shi Zhengli and other researchers was genetically modified to make it able to infect the human ACE2 receptor, the same receptor that SARS-CoV-2 infects to cause COVID-19.
This dangerous new genetically modified virus was created by researchers from the University of North Carolina, the Harvard Medical School, the National Center for Toxicological Research, Food and Drug Administration in Arkansas, the Bellinzona Institute of Microbiology in Switzerland and the Wuhan Institute of Virology in China, who were working together and subsequently published their paper.
This shows that these types of dangerous genetically modified viruses are being created in many laboratories around the world, including WIV.
In 2017, Shi Zhengli and other researchers at WIV, along with researchers from the New York based EcoHealth Alliance, published a paper on how they genetically modified the spike proteins of eight bat coronaviruses, essentially by cutting and pasting genetic material from other coronaviruses, so that the viruses infected the human ACE2 receptor. This is the same receptor that SARS-CoV-2 infects to cause COVID-19.7
According to an article in Newsweek, the EcoHealth alliance was funded by the U.S. National Institutes of Health to do this research.8
The 2015 and 2017 papers are clear evidence that researchers at the WIV, in conjunction with U.S. and other researchers, have been genetically modifying the spike proteins of multiple types of coronaviruses, by cutting and pasting genetic material from other coronaviruses, so that harmless viruses can now infect humans.
Could SARS-CoV-2 Have Escaped From Wuhan Lab?
There are numerous examples of deadly diseases escaping from laboratories. A paper in Science magazine documents many of them and shows how it has only been luck that they haven’t caused a major global pandemic.9
A U.S. State Department visit to the WIV in 2018 found that the lab had very poor security standards. In a cable to Washington, department officials reported their concerns that a dangerous coronavirus could escape.
Columnist Josh Rogin said in The Washington Post on April 14, 2020: “The first cable, which I obtained, also warns that the lab’s work on bat coronaviruses and their potential human transmission represented a risk of a new SARS-like pandemic.”
According to Rogin, the officials “… noted the new lab has a serious shortage of appropriately trained technicians and investigators needed to safely operate this high-containment laboratory.”10
Despite these concerns, the National Institutes of Allergies and Infectious Diseases, which funds biomedical research around the world, in 2019 recommended that the U.S. should continue to fund the Wuhan Institute of Virology research as part of a combination grant designated to a number of entities studying the bat coronavirus. However, the grant was discontinued and the WIV lab never received those funds.11
As stated before there is no evidence that SARS-CoV-2, which causes COVID-19, originated from wild animals or the Huanan Seafood Market. The evidence shows that SARS-CoV-2 was circulating in Wuhan for more than nine days before the first case was reported by someone who had been at the market. SARS-CoV-2 has not been found in wild animals or domesticated livestock.
There is strong evidence this virus is a result of the recombination of two viruses. The evidence shows that it was highly unlikely that this recombination could have occurred naturally, as the two confirmed animal host species were geographically separated, possibly by thousands of miles.
There is clear evidence that the closest relative of the SARS-CoV-2 is RaTG13, and this virus was in the Wuhan Institute of Virology. The evidence shows that SARS-CoV-2 is mostly composed of RaTG13, but that part of the RaTG13 spike protein has been modified with a section of a virus found in a Malayan Pangolin. This modified spike protein is what gives SARS-CoV-2 the ability to bind with the ACE2 receptor and infect people.
There is clear evidence that the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV) has been doing Gain-of-Function research to recombine multiple bat and other coronaviruses by genetically modifying the spike protein so that the viruses can infect humans.
There is clear evidence that the biosecurity at the WIV was inadequate due to the lack of properly trained staff and that this could result in one of the many dangerous genetically engineered bat coronaviruses escaping and causing a global pandemic.
The evidence shows that the Chinese government has constantly lied about the facts that caused this pandemic and allowed it to spread, has prevented independent researchers from entering the WIV to investigate what happened there, continues to suppress all independent research, made researchers and papers disappear and silenced others. This is clear evidence of a grand-scale cover up. What are they trying to cover up?
A reasonable conclusion, based on the evidence, is that SARS-CoV-2 was created in the WIV through Gain-of-Function research, and that it accidentally escaped due to inadequate biosecurity.
The Gain-of-Function researchers and organizations are circling the wagons to prevent this information from becoming public. This includes people like Anthony Fauci who, through the NIH, invested millions of dollars into Gain-of-Function research, and many other organizations in the U.S. and around the world that are still funding the WIV and other laboratories doing this dangerous research.
These groups are saying that SARS-CoV-2 has come from natural mutations, because they know that if the facts are revealed, their research and labs will be closed down to prevent future accidents. Fortunately, there are enough scientists concerned about Gain-of-Function research to uncover good evidence about the origins of this pandemic so that we, as a society, can prevent this from ever happening again.
It is time that all Gain-of-Function research is banned. These scientists are creating deadly Frankenstein monsters that can have terrible consequences when they escape. They are Franken-viruses because they are murderous monsters that can kill millions, severely damage economies and destroy livelihoods.
There is very little evidence of any benefits coming from GOF, and the current COVID-19 pandemic clearly shows that this research is too dangerous. Given that there are even deadlier organisms in these laboratories, the next escape could have even greater consequences for all of us. We must stop it now.
André Leu is International Director of Regeneration International and the author of “Poisoning our Children.”
NewsGuard, which bills itself at "the internet trust tool," is among the latest technology tools claiming to rate information as reliable or fake news, supplying you with a color-coded rating system next to Google and Bing searches, as well as on articles displayed on social media.
If you rely on NewsGuard's ratings, you may decide to entirely skip by those with a low "red" rating in favor of the "more trustworthy" green-rated articles — and therein lies the problem. NewsGuard is in itself fraught with conflicts of interest, as it's largely funded by Publicis, a global communications giant that's partnered with Big Pharma, such that it may be viewed more as a censorship tool than an internet watchdog.
Now, NewsGuard has expanded its partnership with Microsoft, co-founded by Bill Gates, which will provide all users of Microsoft Edge browser free access to its questionable ratings, among other services.
NewsGuard Expands Partnership With Microsoft
Under Microsoft's NewsGuard expansion, people who use Microsoft Edge's desktop and mobile browser will have free access to NewsGuard's ratings, which otherwise must be purchased via a $2.95 monthly subscription fee. Microsoft's Bing search engine will also have NewsGuard ratings in real-time, while all other Microsoft departments will also be able to use NewsGuard ratings in their products and services.1
"Projects already underway include the company's Defending Democracy Program and teams within Microsoft Research who are working on misinformation, disinformation and health care hoaxes," according to a NewsGuard press release.2
Also under the agreement is Microsoft's continued sponsorship of NewsGuard's news literacy program, which is a "unique media literacy teaching tool that guides citizens through the overwhelming landscape of online news and information."3 More than 700 public libraries from Los Angeles to London, serving more than 7 million patrons, currently use NewsGuard.
The news literacy program exists in the U.S., Great Britain, France, Germany and Italy, and with the expanded partnership it's expected to roll out in Australia, Canada and other countries in 2020.4
With the news literacy program, librarians will even provide instructions to patrons on how to install the NewsGuard extension on their personal computers, tablets and cellphones. Once you've installed the NewsGuard browser plugin on your computer or cellphone, the NewsGuard icon rating will appear on all Google and Bing searches and on articles featured in your social media news feeds.
The NewsGuard ratings are meant to influence readers, instructing them to disregard content with cautionary colors and cautions — but NewsGuard's ratings are highly questionable, considering its primary backer, Publicis, is an advertising and data firm that's been involved in advertising and marketing pharmaceutical products, cigarettes and unhealthy junk food to kids.
For instance, Leo Burnett, the ad company famous for creating the Marlboro man ad campaigns that made Marlboro the best-selling cigarette in the world and led to the nicotine addiction of millions, many of whom died from smoking, is a part of Publicis.5,6
NewsGuard co-CEO Gordon Crovitz stated in a press release, "We are delighted to be able to expand our relationship with Microsoft, which is a leader among companies in taking steps to address the unforeseen, unintended consequences of new technologies …
The internet has empowered people around the world with unprecedented access to information, but the internet has also made it easier than ever for misinformation to spread, including health care hoaxes about COVID-19."7
Unfortunately, what's less widely publicized is the widespread deception that can occur when a conflicted start-up company is allowed to dictate what's truth and what's not.
Publicis Acquires Big Data Collection Company Epsilon
Publicis was the lead investor among a group of 18 that helped make NewsGuard a reality. As a giant global communications group, Publicis has divisions that brand imaging, design of digital business platforms, media relations and health care.
Publicis Groupe's health subsidiary, Publicis Health, names Merck, Abbot, Roche, GlaxoSmithKline, Celgene, Sanofi, Johnson & Johnson and other Big Pharma giants as clients, which gives you an idea of where its loyalties lie.8
In early 2020, drug giant GlaxoSmithKline awarded Publicis Media a healthy piece of business, and the communications group responded by creating a custom platformGSK to run the drug giant's media business; platformGSK in turn added Pfizer Consumer Healthcare to its portfolio, making the total venture worth $1.5 billion.
Publicis also handles other Big Pharma media accounts, including Novartis'. In August 2019, Publicis created NovartisONE2 to manage the pharma giant's global media account worth $600 million.9
In April 2019, Publicis also announced that it would acquire marketing services company Epsilon in a $4.4 billion deal.10 Epsilon made headlines in 2011 after a massive data breach, but is far from a household name, despite its strong presence in the marketing world. What is Epsilon? CNET explained:11
"In addition to offering e-mail marketing services and managing customer e-mail databases for clients, Epsilon monitors social networking and other sites to see what people are saying about a company, advises on markets to target, helps develop and maintain customer loyalty programs, and offers Abacus, 'the world's largest cooperative database with over 8.6 billion consumer transactions and 4.8 billion business transactions' used for creating lists of prospective customers.
The different data Epsilon sells includes age, profession, residence, ethnic information and political affiliation …"
Digiday further described Epsilon as "a smorgasbord of data given it has more than 250 million U.S. consumers in its database and sends over 71 billion personalized emails each year."12 Epsilon was also an early adopter of Amazon Alexa, integrating public Alexa data with its own consumer information.13 Until the acquisition — the second largest deal in advertising history — Publicis lacked a major data marketing arm, but now, as Adweek put it, is "firmly in the data business."14
In addition to owning NewsGuard, Publicis has made deals with other tech companies, including a $500 million, multiyear ad partnership with Facebook in 2014. "Under the terms, Publicis' agencies and their clients — which include powerful brands like Procter & Gamble, Walmart, Bank of America, McDonald's and Coca-Cola — will receive discounted rates on a range of Facebook products as well as access to Facebook's user data and engineers," according to Entrepreneur.15
In 2013, Publicis also inked a $100 million deal with Google and agreed to purchase millions of dollars in YouTube ads in the next year.16 If NewsGuard continues, it's very likely Google, Facebook, Twitter and other platforms will use its ratings to lower the visibility of content — making nonconformist views disappear entirely.
NewsGuard Ignores Key Data, Censors Truthful News
Once installed on your browser, NewsGuard assigns a color coded "Nutrition Label" to sites, rating them green or red in a process they said would be "completely transparent and accountable."17 The nine criteria NewsGuard is using to "protect" you from fake news include:18
Does not repeatedly publish false content (22 points)
Gathers and presents information responsibly (18 points)
Regularly corrects or clarifies errors (12.5 points)
Handles the difference between news and opinion responsibly (12.5 points)
Avoids deceptive headlines (10 points)
Website discloses ownership and financing (7.5 points)
Clearly labels advertising (7.5 points)
Reveals who's in charge, including possible conflicts of interest (5 points)
The site provides the names of content creators, along with either contact or biographical information (5 points)
A score lower than 60 points gets a red rating, while higher scores get more favorable results, which is intended to provide readers with a "signal if a website is trying to get it right or instead has a hidden agenda or knowingly publishes falsehoods or propaganda."19 However, NewsGuard's ratings can't be taken at face value.
Recently, NewsGuard announced that my site has been classified as fake news because we have reported the SARS-CoV-2 virus as potentially having been leaked from the biosafety level 4 (BSL4) laboratory in Wuhan City, China, the epicenter of the COVID-19 outbreak.
According to NewsGuard, "There is no evidence that the Wuhan Institute of Virology was the source of the outbreak, and genomic evidence has found that the virus is 96% identical at the whole-genome level to a bat coronavirus."20 But NewsGuard's position is in direct conflict with published scientific evidence suggesting this virus was created in a lab and not zoonotically transmitted.
Since my February 4, 2020, article, I've become increasingly convinced — through reviewing the scientific literature that NewsGuard ignores or is unaware of — that SARS-CoV-2 may in fact be a synthetic virus, likely created and released (inadvertently or not) from one or more laboratories that worked on weaponizing SARS and bat coronaviruses.
Interestingly, an April 2020 report by CNN reveals China's censorship of articles mentioning the possibility that SARS-CoV-2 may have leaked from the Wuhan BSL4 facility appears to come from China,21 which means, by essentially also censoring such articles, NewsGuard is functionally protecting Chinese interests and inhibiting scientific inquiry.
Overall, it appears NewsGuard is just another big business aimed at keeping the chemical, drug and food industries, as well as mainstream media, intact by discrediting and eliminating unwanted competition, including yours truly and many others who empower you with information that helps you take control of your health.
Fighting Back Against Fake 'Fact Checkers'
NewsGuard is backed by the Publicis Groupe, which has been manipulating what people think about commercial products for nearly a century.22 You don't need this thought police, advertising front group helping you sort through fake news and telling you what's sound science and what's not.
There are a number of ways to fight back, including choosing browsers and search engines that do not automatically contain NewsGuard ratings. In addition, if your local library is using NewsGuard, you can start a campaign to get it removed, while letting others know that NewsGuard is owned by a pharmaceutical public relations/data firm and is engaged in censoring truthful news and scientific freedom.
Meatpacking plants have joined nursing homes and prisons as hot spots of COVID-19 cases, and the infections are affecting the surrounding communities as well. It's one more way that the industrial model of food production that's permeated the U.S. is failing and, rather than supplying healthy food for the public, is causing environmental destruction and disease.
In an April 2020 report, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stated that COVID-19 cases among U.S. workers in 115 meat and poultry processing facilities were reported by 19 states. The facilities employ approximately 130,000 workers and have seen 4,913 cases and 20 deaths.
"Factors potentially affecting risk for infection include difficulties with workplace physical distancing and hygiene and crowded living and transportation conditions," the CDC noted.1 An analysis by the Environmental Working Group (EWG) further revealed that counties containing meatpacking plants, or located within 15 miles of one, are also facing an above-average number of COVID-19 infections.2
Nearly Double the COVID-19 Infections in Meatpacking Counties
Using cases reported by Johns Hopkins University, EWG revealed that, as of May 6, 2020, counties with meatpacking plants, or within a 15-mile radius, reported 373 COVID-19 cases per 100,000 residents, which is close to double the U.S. average of 199 cases per 100,000. EWG reported:3
"Meat plant outbreaks are among the largest drivers of the recent eight-fold growth in COVID-19 cases in rural America. Before [meat plants were ordered to remain open on April 28] … at least 30 plants temporarily closed to address their outbreaks, although most have remained open without pause. In at least one state, the governor overrode public health officials to force a plant to remain open."
A Bloomberg analysis also revealed that, during the week after the order that meatpacking plants remain open, cases of COVID-19 increased 40% in counties with major meat slaughterhouses compared to a 19% rise across the U.S.4 While such counties represent just 7.5% of the U.S. population, they accounted for 10% of new COVID-19 cases and were described as new hot spots in the mostly rural areas.
Neighboring communities are also at risk, because while the average U.S. commute is 15 miles one way, many meat plant workers likely travel much farther to get to work. "… [B]ecause the 15-mile radius around meatpacking plants often crosses county or state lines, seemingly isolated case clusters not only endanger one community but can also spread the virus to neighboring counties or states," EWG noted.5
As an example, EWG cited Dakota City, Nebraska, which is home to Tyson Foods. The plant reported 669 cases on April 30, 2020, but the seven counties that are located in a 15-mile radius of Dakota City have an average of 1,000 COVID-19 cases per 100,000 people. Worse still are the counties that are near more than one meatpacking plant, "creating a deadly Venn diagram with overlapping zones of potential plant-linked infections."6
Tama, Black Hawk and Marshall counties in central Iowa, which have three meatpacking plants, have an average of 1,483 cases per 100,000 residents — more than seven times the U.S. national average.
Consolidation Leads to Rises in COVID-19 and Meat Shortages
Tyson, JBS USA, Smithfield Foods and Cargill Inc. control the majority of U.S. meat and poultry, most of which are processed in a limited number of large plants. Because the processing is concentrated into a small number of large facilities, a U.S. government statement noted, "[C]losure of any of these plants could disrupt our food supply and detrimentally impact our hardworking farmers and ranchers."7
While the move to keep meat and poultry processing plants open was met with criticism from unions calling for increased protections for workers in the cramped conditions, the government cited statistics that closing one large beef processing plant could lead to a loss of more than 10 million servings of beef in a day.
Further they noted that closing one processing plant can eliminate more than 80% of the supply of a given meat product, such as ground beef, to an entire grocery store chain.8 It's unknown just how many COVID-19 infections have occurred among the more than 500,000 workers employed by the approximately 7,600 slaughter and processing facilities in North America.9
Some states and counties are not releasing information about which facilities have cases. Even the workers at some facilities have been kept in the dark as outbreaks occurred. EWG reported, however:
"According to the Midwest Center for Investigative Reporting, as of May 12, there have been at least 12,500 reported COVID-19 cases tied to meatpacking facilities in at least 180 plants in 31 states. As of May 12, the Food and Environment Reporting Network's map of all meat and food processing plant COVID-19 outbreaks shows infections of 13,342 meat industry workers."10
EWG also reported the meatpacking plants with the most COVID-19 cases, with the top 10 as follows:11
|Company||Location||Infected Workers||Confirmed Cases in Counties Within 15 Miles||Share of Confirmed County Cases From Nearby Facility Outbreaks|
Sioux Falls, South Dakota
Dakota City, Nebraska
St. Joseph, Missouri
Green Bay, Wisconsin
Dodge City, Kansas
CAFOs Killing Off Unprecedented Number of Animals
The problems caused by consolidation in the meat industry are perhaps no more apparent than to the farmers left with hundreds of thousands of animals quickly growing too large for slaughter, and nowhere to send them. Farmers with large pig farms are being particularly hard hit, although egg and poultry farmers have also been affected.
If slaughterhouses close, the farmers have nowhere to send their animals, and with a new, younger group waiting to replace them, have no room to spare. Across the U.S., farmers are being forced to gas, lethally inject or shoot food animals in the head, a waste of meat during a time when many are struggling to find food, and a sentence that's causing emotional damage to farmers.
"The economic part of it is damaging," Steve Meyer, a pork industry analyst, told The New York Times. "But the emotional and psychological and spiritual impact of this will have much longer consequences."12 The mental turmoil is also giving way to another environmental problem — what to do with all the dead bodies. The Times reported:13
"In recent weeks, animal health officials in Minnesota have leased plots of land as large as 100 acres to create composting sites for hogs. Each day, farmers arrive in trucks to unload the remains of their pigs. Then a cleanup crew puts the carcasses into a wood chipper.
So far, the state has composted more than 5,000 pig carcasses across two locations, and it plans to establish up to three more disposal sites in the coming weeks, said Michael Crusan, a spokesman for the Board of Animal Health.
Farmers, who spend about $130 to raise each pig, pay to transport the carcasses to the disposal sites, where the state covers the cost of composting. Some farmers who have had to cull large numbers of animals have lost as much as $390,000 in a single day."
Meat Inspectors Spreading Disease
The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is tasked with conducting inspections on U.S. meat supplies. This requires inspectors to travel to slaughterhouses, processing plants and other facilities across the U.S.
FSIS inspectors speaking to Government Executive criticized the agency's handling of the inspection process during the pandemic, detailing unsafe working practices that are likely contributing to the spread of disease.14 Prior to April 2020, multiple inspectors said they were prohibited from wearing masks during inspections because it would create fear in the facilities.
Reports have emerged of potential disruptions to the food supply chain as meat plants, including facilities in Greeley, Colorado, and Columbus Junction, Iowa, closed due to COVID-19 outbreaks among employees and federal inspectors. However, prior to the closure, as inspectors in Greeley fell ill, the USDA sent another round of inspectors to the plant to supplement the workforce there.
FSIS also relocated employees from a Sioux Falls, South Dakota, Smithfield plant that closed to a facility in Waterloo, Iowa, where inspectors were also testing positive for COVID-19. While inspectors questioned the strategy of moving employees potentially exposed to COVID-19 from one hot zone to the next, FSIS told inspectors to keep working, even if they'd been exposed, as long as they had not yet developed symptoms.15
FSIS has not revealed how many inspectors have contracted COVID-19, but Buck McKay, an FSIS spokesperson, stated that "ensuring the U.S. supply chain remains strong is [the agency's] top priority."16
'The Sickness in Our Food Supply'
In an article titled "The Sickness in Our Food Supply,"17 author Michael Pollan succinctly sums up many of the problems facing the food supply, and how they've now been thrust into the spotlight due to COVID-19. Americans, for the first time in decades, have been faced with empty grocery store shelves and meat shortages.
In May 2020 Costco began limiting the amount of meat each shopper could purchase, while Kroger warned customers that it could soon have limited inventory.18 The problem, however, isn't a shortage of food but problems with distribution and breaks in the supply chain.
Adding insult to injury, the foods that the industrialized food system promotes, including heavily processed junk foods, are those that contribute to the chronic diseases that make people most at risk from severe COVID-19 infection. And some of the most questionable practices of all, like the massive planting of corn and soybean crops, are likely to be unscathed by the pandemic. Pollan wrote:19
"The pandemic is, willy-nilly, making the case for deindustrializing and decentralizing the American food system, breaking up the meat oligopoly, ensuring that food workers have sick pay and access to health care, and pursuing policies that would sacrifice some degree of efficiency in favor of much greater resilience.
Somewhat less obviously, the pandemic is making the case not only for a different food system but for a radically different diet as well.
It's long been understood that an industrial food system built upon a foundation of commodity crops like corn and soybeans leads to a diet dominated by meat and highly processed food. Most of what we grow in this country is not food exactly, but rather feed for animals and the building blocks from which fast food, snacks, soda, and all the other wonders of food processing, such as high-fructose corn syrup, are manufactured.
While some sectors of agriculture are struggling during the pandemic, we can expect the corn and soybean crop to escape more or less unscathed. That's because it takes remarkably little labor—typically a single farmer on a tractor, working alone—to plant and harvest thousands of acres of these crops. So processed foods should be the last kind to disappear from supermarket shelves.
Unfortunately, a diet dominated by such foods (as well as lots of meat and little in the way of vegetables or fruit—the so-called Western diet) predisposes us to obesity and chronic diseases such as hypertension and type-2 diabetes. These 'underlying conditions' happen to be among the strongest predictors that an individual infected with Covid-19 will end up in the hospital with a severe case of the disease …"
Support the PRIME Act
Under current government regulations, the USDA, not individual states, has control over how meat is processed. Small livestock producers are forced to drive long distances to have their animals slaughtered at slaughterhouses that meet federal inspection standards — the same slaughterhouses that are now being shut down because the giant facilities are breeding grounds for disease.
Small, custom slaughterhouses are not permitted to sell any of their meat to grocery stores, schools or restaurants, even though it could now prove to be a lifeline to states.
The Processing Revival and Intrastate Meat Exemption (PRIME) Act, introduced by Representative Thomas Massie, R-Ky., would allow farmers to sell meat processed at these smaller slaughtering facilities and allow states to set their own meat processing standards.
Because small slaughterhouses do not have an inspector on staff, a requirement that only large facilities can easily fulfill, they're banned from selling their meat. The PRIME Act would lift this regulation without sacrificing safety, as random USDA inspections could still occur.20
Massie stated that the shutting down of meat processing plants is driving the euthanizing of animals that may lead to shortages in the supermarket, including a shortage of beef by the fall. "Let those small meat processors fill in the gaps so that we don't have the dangerous situation where we're euthanizing animals instead of providing them as food. My bill would allow that to happen," he stated.21
Dementia is a growing problem worldwide and the numbers are overwhelming. Alzheimer's Disease International estimates the global number with dementia reached 46.8 million in 2015 and is predicted to grow to 75 million by 2030, and 131.5 million by 2050.1
In the U.S. there are more than 5 million people with Alzheimer’s, one form of dementia.2 This number is estimated to nearly triple to 14 million by 2050. One in 3 of older adults dies every year with some form of dementia, which is more than the numbers with breast cancer and prostate cancer combined.
To put it another way, from 2000 to 2018, the number who died from heart disease dropped 7.8%, while the number who died from Alzheimer's rose 146%.
The economic costs have reached $305 billion and could rise to $1.1 trillion by 2050. Primary care doctors are overwhelmed by the number of patients in their practices and half believe the profession isn't ready for the growing number.
The development of dementia and Alzheimer's disease is likely due to a number of reasons. Researchers have identified several factors that impact cognitive impairment, including insulin resistance,3 certain drugs,4 lack of sleep5 and low levels of some vitamins.6
Cholinergic Dysfunction May Drive Dementia
As explained in a recently published paper, scientists analyzed the effect proton pump inhibitors have on the development of dementia. They recognized indicators pointing to cholinergic dysfunction in the development of dementia. In a review article from 1999,7 other scholars outlined data to support the hypothesis that cholinergic dysfunction contributes to Alzheimer's.
By 2008,8 the research community had identified areas of the brain where cholinergic dysfunction may influence dementia. Subsequently, acetylcholine was recognized for the central role it plays in the nervous system.9 It requires an enzyme to synthesize from acetyl-COA and choline. That enzyme is choline acetyltransferase.
Cholinergic synapses are found throughout the brain, including the basal forebrain, which is severely damaged in those who have the disease. With further research,10 scientists found using cholinesterase inhibitors could increase acetylcholine in the brain, which has proven to be clinically useful in the treatment of Alzheimer's dementia.
The use of anticholinergic drugs has a known side effect, though, of causing short-term cognitive impairment in the elderly.11 These medications act on the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, which is involved in sending messages that affect muscle contraction. They also act on parts of the brain that handle memory and learning.
Anticholinergic drugs have been used for decades to treat diarrhea, asthma, insomnia, motion sickness and even some psychiatric disorders. Some of the more common side effects include blurry vision, dizziness, confusion, hallucination and drowsiness.12
As described in study published in JAMA,13 scientists looked at whether exposure could increase the risk of dementia in people 55 years and older. The data revealed that those taking strong anticholinergic drugs, which affect acetylcholine, was associated with a greater risk of dementia.
Gastric acid secretion is regulated in part by acetylcholine. The development of proton pump inhibitors for chronic heartburn became a mainstay of treatment. This resulted in people taking the medication for long periods of time. The intended use of the drug was to inhibit the cellular proton pump that produces acid.
However, proton pump inhibitors are not specific to stomach cells and will inhibit any cell with a proton pump. This may be the trigger for the long list of side effects associated with the drugs, including kidney disease, dementia and liver disease.14 While researchers found an association between proton pump inhibitors and dementia, the mechanism had yet to be discovered.
One Drug Selectively Inhibits Synthesis of Acetylcholine
One team of researchers15 looked at all proton pump inhibitors approved by the FDA and found that the drugs negatively affected the production of acetylcholine in the body.
Using computer simulations, they evaluated how different substances in six proton pump inhibitors interacted with choline acetyltransferase.16 While the drug was designed to limit cellular proton pumps and reduce acid production, the simulations showed they could bind with the enzyme that synthesizes acetylcholine.
The effect of this was to reduce production of acetylcholine. The researchers believe new studies are needed to determine if the effects in the lab also happen in the body. One of the team members commented:17
"Special care should be taken with the more elderly patients and those already diagnosed with dementia. The same also applies to patients with muscle weakness diseases such as ALS, as acetylcholine is an essential motor neurotransmitter. In such cases, doctors should use the drugs that have the weakest effect and prescribe them at lowest dose and for as short a time as possible.”
Choline: Key Factor in Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease?
Nonalcoholic liver disease (NAFLD) is one of the most common forms of liver disease in the U.S.18 It is initiated in part by obesity and insulin resistance. Scientists have found it may lead to fibrosis of the liver and then to cirrhosis or liver cancer.
There are two forms of NAFLD which are not associated with alcohol consumption. The first is simple fatty liver or nonalcoholic fatty liver (NAFL) in which there are fatty deposits in the liver but very little, if any, inflammation or cellular damage.
The second is called nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). This is a form of NAFLD in which you have fatty deposits in the liver and hepatitis, or inflammation of the liver. This results in liver cell damage that can lead to fibrosis, cirrhosis or liver cancer. Most people with the condition have simple fatty liver while only a small number have NASH.
The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases reports that between 30% and 40% of all adults in America have NAFLD. Those who have a higher risk are obese and have Type 2 diabetes. The condition can affect people of any age, race or ethnicity.
In one animal study, researchers found that by supplementing with choline they could normalize cholesterol metabolism, which appeared to help prevent NASH and improve liver function.19 As described in one paper, choline is necessary for liver health:20
“Humans must eat diets containing choline because its metabolite phosphatidylcholine constitutes 40–50% of cellular membranes and 70–95% of phospholipids in lipoproteins, bile and surfactants; it is needed to form acetylcholine, an important neurotransmitter; its metabolite betaine is needed for normal kidney glomerular function, and perhaps for mitochondrial function; and it provides one-carbon units, via oxidation to betaine, to the methionine cycle for methylation reactions.
When humans eat diets low in choline, fatty liver is one of the earliest adverse events, and in some people significant hepatic damage occurs (as assessed by release of hepatic enzymes into blood).”
According to Chris Masterjohn, Ph.D., choline deficiency may be a more significant in development of the condition than taking in too much fructose. His degree is in nutritional science and he believes the rise in fatty liver conditions is largely due to more and more people avoiding egg yolks and liver.
In his review of the medical literature, Masterjohn found a link between choline and fatty liver, which was initially discovered in research into Type 1 diabetes. He describes the relationship:21
"Physicians and researchers had started pinning the blame on alcohol abuse for fatty liver back in the 1800s, so while research was first highlighting the role of sucrose in fatty liver, other research was doing the same for alcohol.
In 1949, however, researchers showed that sucrose and ethanol had equal potential to cause fatty liver and the resulting inflammatory damage, and that increases in dietary protein, extra methionine, and extra choline could all completely protect against this effect.
Conversely, much more recent research has shown that sucrose is a requirement for the development of fatty liver disease in a methionine- and choline-deficient (MCD) model. The MCD model of fatty liver disease is the oldest and most widely used dietary model.
The MCD model produces not only the accumulation of liver fat, but massive inflammation similar to the worst forms of fatty liver disease seen in humans. What no one ever mentions about this diet is that it is primarily composed of sucrose and its fat is composed entirely of corn oil!
The picture that is clearly emerging from all of these studies is that fat, or anything from which fat is made in the liver, such as fructose and ethanol, are required for the development of fatty liver. But in addition to this [same] factor — overwhelmingly, it appears to be choline deficiency — must deprive the liver of its ability to export that fat."
Choline Needed for Optimal Health
Your liver produces a small amount of choline,22 but the rest must be supplied through your diet. Unfortunately, nearly 90% of people living in the U.S. have a deficiency,23 which increases the risk of babies being born with neural tube defects.24
As I’ve written before, groups at particularly high risk for choline deficiency include pregnant mothers, endurance athletes, postmenopausal women, vegans, and those who consume high amounts of alcohol.
Choline serves several vital functions in the body.25 It's used in the manufacture of some phospholipids essential to the development of your cell membranes. Choline is also a precursor for intracellular molecules used in cell signaling.
The neurotransmitter acetylcholine is synthesized from choline and involved in memory, circadian rhythm and muscle control. Each of these specific functions contribute to the impact it has on cardiovascular health, liver diseases, neural tube defects and cognitive health.
Seek Best Natural Sources of Choline First
The National Institutes of Health26 lists the adequate intake for choline provided in the Dietary Reference Intakes developed by the Institute of Medicine (IOM). At the time these were developed, there was not sufficient data to establish an estimated average requirement.
This is a number that's usually used to determine the amount of nutrients needed to adequately supply diets for 50% of healthy individuals. Instead, the Food and Nutrition Board of the IOM established adequate intakes for all ages they believe would prevent the development of liver damage.
To date, men 19 years and older who get 550 mg per day and women who take in 425 mg per day have an adequate intake. This rises to 450 mg per day during pregnancy and 550 mg per day while breastfeeding. These are suggested values and may vary depending on your diet, age, ethnicity and genetic makeup.
It is best to first seek healthy natural sources for your nutrients. For instance, a single hardboiled egg weighing approximately 50 grams may contain from 113 mg27 to 147 mg28 of choline. This is 25% to 30% of your daily requirement. Only grass fed beef liver has more, with per 50 grams per serving.29 As noted in the Fatty Liver Diet Guide:30
"Eggs rank very high on the list of foods that are high in either lecithin, which converts to choline, or in choline itself. Note that this is the egg yolks only, not egg whites, which only have traces of this micronutrient.
Choline is essential in the production of phosphatidylcholine, a fat molecule called a phospholipid. But wait! Isn't all fat bad? No — especially if it is essential to overall health and in particular, liver health. Simply put — if you don't have enough choline, your liver can't move out fat. It instead begins to collect within your liver, creating fatty liver."
That said, supplementation is a potential option if you don’t eat eggs, salmon or other foods with ample amounts of the nutrient. The tolerable upper intake for an adult is 3.5 grams per day.32 Be careful not to take too much, as side effects of excessive choline include low blood pressure, sweating, diarrhea and a fishy body odor.
1 Which of the following owns the equity firm that manages Gannett, the largest media company in the U.S. with more than 260 dailies, including USA Today, under their umbrella?
2 Which of the following is "the smoking gun" proving SARS-CoV-2 was lab-created?
3 What are human gammaretroviruses?
4 Who is the most visible mastermind behind the plan to vaccinate the global population with an experimental COVID-19 vaccine, despite the fact that coronavirus vaccines have a decades' long history of causing a "paradoxical immune enhancement" that turns lethal when exposed to wild coronavirus?
5 In the past, coronavirus vaccine development has been hampered by which of the following problems?
6 What is the biggest risk of Amazon's gigantic empire?
7 Who identified the 1978-1980 Zimbabwe anthrax outbreak as a case of biological warfare?
N-acetylcysteine (NAC) is a precursor to reduced glutathione, and both of these play important roles in health and fitness. NAC has a long history of use as a first-aid remedy for acetaminophen (known as paracetamol in Europe) poisoning.
It's given in cases when you've taken an overdose of Tylenol or other acetaminophen products. It neutralizes the toxic effects of the drug by recharging glutathione, thereby preventing liver damage.
NAC and glutathione may also be important in COVID-19, as explained by pulmonologist Dr. Roger Seheult in the MedCram lectures above. The reason for this is because of the role they play in combating oxidative stress, which is a main cause of inflammation and disease in general, and the cytokine storm associated with COVID-19 in particular. NAC may also combat the abnormal blood clotting seen in many cases.
As explained and illustrated by Seheult, when you add an electron to an oxygen (O2) molecule, you get superoxide (O2), a reactive oxygen species (ROS). When you add another electron (for a total of two electrons), you get hydrogen peroxide (H2O2). An oxygen molecule with three electrons added becomes hydroxyl (O3), and oxygen with four electrons added becomes water (H2O).
Oxygen is the most oxidized form, while water is the most reduced form. Your body has built-in defenses against oxidative stress like1 superoxide dismutase (SOD). SOD converts damaging superoxide into hydrogen peroxide. Another is catalase, which converts hydrogen peroxide into oxygen and water. A third is glutathione peroxidase (GSHPX).
GSHPX does two things simultaneously. While reducing hydrogen peroxide into water, it also converts the reduced form of glutathione (GSH) into glutathione disulfide (GSSG), which is the oxidized form of glutathione. In other words, as GSHPX turns hydrogen peroxide into harmless water, glutathione becomes oxidized.
The oxidized GSSG is then "recharged" or regenerated by NADPH (the reduced form of NADP+), turning it back into GSH (the reduced form of glutathione). NADPH is also converted into NADP+ through an enzyme called GSH reductase.
The reason this is important is because superoxide plays a crucial role in the oxidative stress occurring in the chronic illnesses identified as comorbidities for COVID-19, such as obesity, heart disease and diabetes.
As noted by Seheult, serious COVID-19 infection triggers a perfect storm of superoxide-driven oxidative stress, as SARS-CoV-2 attaches to the ACE2 receptor, triggering angiotensin 2 (AT-2), which stimulates superoxide. Simultaneously, there's a deficiency of AT-1,7, which inhibits superoxide. So, this deficiency allows superoxide to accumulate further.
SARS-CoV-2 also attracts polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMNs), a type of white blood cell, which also produces superoxide in its efforts to destroy pathogens. All of that superoxide is then converted into other ROS that destroy endothelial cells.
This down-spiral can be inhibited by N-acetylcysteine (NAC), which boosts GSSG. As illustrated by Seheult, when you add two GSH molecules and hydrogen peroxide together, you end up with oxidized glutathione and harmless water, thus alleviating the oxidative stress.
NAC Boosts GSH and Protects Against Influenza
Seheult cites research showing low GSH and oxidative stress are associated with a range of nose, ear and throat conditions, affecting tissues both locally and systemically. The good news is that glutathione can be recharged with NAC, an inexpensive and readily available over-the-counter supplement.
Research2 has in fact demonstrated that NAC can attenuate symptoms of influenza and improve cell-mediated immunity. According to the authors:
"N-acetylcysteine (NAC), an analogue and precursor of reduced glutathione, has been in clinical use for more than 30 yrs as a mucolytic drug. It has also been proposed for and/or used in the therapy and/or prevention of several respiratory diseases and of diseases involving an oxidative stress, in general.
The objective of the present study was to evaluate the effect of long-term treatment with NAC on influenza and influenza-like episodes. A total of 262 subjects of both sexes … were enrolled in a randomized, double-blind trial … randomized to receive either placebo or NAC tablets (600 mg) twice daily for 6 months.
Patients suffering from chronic respiratory diseases were not eligible, to avoid possible confounding by an effect of NAC on respiratory symptoms. NAC treatment was well tolerated and resulted in a significant decrease in the frequency of influenza-like episodes, severity, and length of time confined to bed.
Both local and systemic symptoms were sharply and significantly reduced in the NAC group. Frequency of seroconversion towards A/H1N1 Singapore 6/86 influenza virus was similar in the two groups, but only 25% of virus-infected subjects under NAC treatment developed a symptomatic form, versus 79% in the placebo group ...
Administration of N-acetylcysteine during the winter, thus, appears to provide a significant attenuation of influenza and influenza-like episodes, especially in elderly high-risk individuals. N-acetylcysteine did not prevent A/H1N1 virus influenza infection but significantly reduced the incidence of clinically apparent disease."
NAC Is a Potent Antiviral in Its Own Right
As noted by Seheult, the number needed to treat (NNT) in that study3 is 0.5, which means for every two people treated with NAC, one will be protected against symptomatic influenza. (Remember, you can be infected with a virus yet not become ill, i.e., symptomatic, if your immune system is strong enough.)
That's significantly better than influenza vaccines, which have an NNT, or NNV (number needed to vaccinate) of 71,4 meaning 71 people must be vaccinated to prevent a single case of confirmed influenza. It's even better than vitamin D, which has an NNT of 33.5 (Among those who were severely vitamin D deficient at baseline, taking vitamin D still had an NNT of 4.)
NAC has also been shown to inhibit viral replication and expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines, such as interleukin-6 (IL-6), in cells infected with highly pathogenic H5N1 influenza virus.6 According to the authors:
"The antiviral and anti-inflammatory mechanisms of NAC included inhibition of activation of oxidant sensitive pathways including transcription factor NF-kappaB and mitogen activated protein kinase p38 ...
NAC inhibits H5N1 replication and H5N1-induced production of pro-inflammatory molecules. Therefore, antioxidants like NAC represent a potential additional treatment option that could be considered in the case of an influenza A virus pandemic."
NAC in Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome
NAC has also been shown to reduce acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS),7 which is a serious complication associated with acute lung injury (ALI). One meta-analysis8 of five randomized controlled trials found a significant reduction in intensive care unit (ICU) stays among patients treated with NAC, even though there was no significant difference in short-term mortality risk.
Another earlier study9 found NAC improves ARDS by "increasing intracellular glutathione and extracellular thiol molecules" along with general antioxidant effects. According to this study:
"In acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS), there is extensive overproduction of free radicals to the extent that endogenous antioxidants are overwhelmed, permitting oxidative cell damage.
The present study examined the benefit of the anti-oxidant compound N-acetylcysteine (NAC) in the management of ARDS by measuring patient's intracellular glutathione (inside red blood cells) and extracellular (plasma) anti-oxidant defense biomarkers and outcome.
Twenty-seven ARDS patients were recruited from the intensive care unit of a teaching Hospital and randomly divided into two groups. Both groups were managed similarly by regular treatments but 17 patients received NAC 150 mg/kg at the first day that followed by 50 mg/kg/day for three days and 10 patients did not receive NAC.
Treatment by NAC increased extracellular total anti-oxidant power and total thiol molecules and also improved intracellular glutathione and the outcome of the patients. In conclusion, patients with ARDS are in a deficient oxidant-anti-oxidant balance that can get a significant benefit if supplemented with NAC."
NAC Improves Lung Function
Other studies that have shown NAC to be beneficial in the treatment of lung-related problems include the following:
• A 1994 study10 found NAC enhances recovery from ALI, significantly regressing patients' lung injury score during the first 10 days of treatment, and significantly reducing the need for ventilation.
After three days of treatment, only 17% of those receiving NAC needed ventilation, compared to 48% in the placebo group. According to the authors:
"Intravenous NAC treatment during 72 h improved systemic oxygenation and reduced the need for ventilatory support in patients presenting with mild-to-moderate acute lung injury subsequent to a variety of underlying diseases."
• A 2018 study11 found NAC reduces oxidative and inflammatory damage in patients with community-acquired pneumonia.
• Another 2018 study12 found NAC also improves post-operative lung function in patients undergoing liver transplantation.
NAC Protects Against Blood Clots and Stroke
Importantly, with regard to COVID-19, NAC may protect against the coagulation problems associated with this illness. Many COVID-19 patients experience serious blood clots, and NAC counteracts hypercoagulation in the blood as well.13,14,15
As noted in one of these studies,16 "NAC has anticoagulant and platelet-inhibiting properties." Another study points out that:17
"… diabetes exacerbates stroke-induced brain injury, and that this correlates with brain methylglyoxal (MG)-to-glutathione (GSH) status. Cerebral injury was reversed by N-acetylcysteine (NAC).
Here we tested if the pro-thrombotic phenotype seen in the systemic circulation and brain during diabetes was associated with increased MG-glycation of proteins, and if NAC could reverse this ...
NAC treatment partly or completely reversed the effects of diabetes. Collectively, these results show that the diabetic blood and brain become progressively more susceptible to platelet activation and thrombosis.
NAC, given after the establishment of diabetes, may offer protection against the risk for stroke by altering both systemic and vascular prothrombotic responses via enhancing platelet GSH, and GSH-dependent MG elimination, as well as correcting levels of antioxidants such as SOD1 and GPx-1."
A fourth paper,18 published in 2017, found NAC has potent thrombolytic effects, meaning it breaks down blood clots. The authors concluded that "NAC is an effective and safe alternative to currently available antithrombotic agents to restore vessel patency after arterial occlusion." (Restoring vessel patency means the blood vessel is now unobstructed so that blood can flow freely.)
Seheult cites two additional papers19,20 showing the same thing. As noted by Seheult, many COVID-19 cases have blood clots in addition to excessive oxidative stress, and NAC addresses both of these problems.
NAC for COVID-19
Last but not least, a report21 reviewing the evidence for using NAC in the treatment of COVID-19 was published April 14, 2020, by The Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine at the University of Oxford.
This report focuses on acute respiratory disorders, and we now know that COVID-19 is not just a respiratory disorder but also a blood disorder. This is a significant shortcoming of this report, as there's significant evidence that NAC can break down the blood clots responsible for the hypoxia (cellular deprivation of oxygen) in COVID-19.
May 5, 2020, a trial was posted to ClinicalTrials.gov, for the study of NAC in patients with COVID-19, sponsored by the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.22 The study aims to enroll 86 patients with severe or critical illness to investigate whether NAC, in addition to other supportive treatments, can reduce ICU stays and prevent the need for mechanical ventilation. Here, they are giving 6 grams (6,000 milligrams) of NAC a day for up to three weeks.
Seheult's hypothesis for why NAC may be useful in COVID-19 treatment can be summarized as follows:
SARS-CoV-2 attaches to and reduces the ACE2 receptor, which causes AT-2 to increase and AT-1,7 to decrease. This in turn increases damaging superoxide that causes oxidative stress and endothelial cell dysfunction.
This then increases von Willebrand factor from the endothelial space, causing thrombosis (blood clots), and it is this thrombosis that appears to cause the hypoxia in the lungs. NAC — which recharges glutathione — not only reduces superoxide (oxidative stress) but also appears to reduce von Willebrand factors that form blood clots.
Glutathione for COVID-19
In the second MedCram video (second in the playlist), Seheult reviews the blood clotting aspects of COVID-19. He also discusses the potential effectiveness of simply taking glutathione, opposed to its precursor, NAC.
A recent case report23 — which simply reviews one or more medical cases and is not an actual study — reports that two patients with COVID-19 and a history of Lyme disease (coinfection) treated with 2 grams of intravenous glutathione "improved their dyspnea within one hour of use." Dyspnea is the medical term for shortness of breath. According to the authors:
"Oral and IV glutathione, glutathione precursors (N-acetyl-cysteine) and alpha lipoic acid may represent a novel treatment approach for blocking NF-κB and addressing 'cytokine storm syndrome' and respiratory distress in patients with COVID-19 pneumonia."
He also cites a Russian paper24 stating that glutathione deficiency may be "the most likely cause of serious manifestation and death" in COVID-19 patients. The paper, which is a preprint and has not yet undergone peer review, presents a hypothesis "based on an exhaustive literature analysis and own observations." According to the author:25
"The major risk factors established for severe COVID-19 infection and relative glutathione deficiency found in COVID-19-infected patients with moderate-to-severe illness have converged me to two very important conclusions:
(1) oxidative stress contributes to hyper-inflammation of the lung leading to adverse disease outcomes such as acute respiratory distress syndrome, multiorgan failure and death;
(2) poor antioxidant defense due to endogenous glutathione deficiency as a result of decreased biosynthesis and/or increased depletion of GSH is the most probable cause of increased oxidative damage of the lung, regardless which of the factors aging, chronic disease comorbidity, smoking or some others were responsible for this deficit.
The hypothesis provides novel insights into the etiology and mechanisms responsible for serious manifestations of COVID-19 infection and justifies promising opportunities for effective treatment and prevention of the illness through glutathione recovering with N-acetylcysteine and reduced glutathione."
As noted by Seheult, we still do not have any trials demonstrating that NAC will benefit COVID-19 patients specifically, "but if we connect the dots, it looks promising." What's more, NAC is very safe and many studies have shown there are no serious adverse effects associated with its use.
The same can be said for glutathione. Seheult points out it would be interesting to see what the effect might be using a combination of both glutathione and NAC. Overall, the more we learn about this disease, the more we realize there may be simple and inexpensive ways to treat this perplexing illness, and NAC in particular looks like a good candidate for consideration.
Of course, both also have many other important health benefits. To learn more, see "Glutathione and NAC Play Crucial Roles in Health and Fitness," and "The Many Benefits of NAC — One of the Most Important Supplements You've Likely Never Heard Of."
Dr. Mercola Interviews the Experts
This article is part of a weekly series in which Dr. Mercola interviews various experts on a variety of health issues. To see more expert interviews, click here.
Judy Mikovits, Ph.D. is a cellular and molecular biologist,1 researcher and was the founding research director of the Whittemore Peterson Institute that researches and treats chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) in Reno, Nevada.
She is likely one of the most qualified scientists in the world to comment on this disease because of her groundbreaking research in molecular biology and virology. Mikovits is absolutely brilliant, but like many gifted researchers, her complex discussions on science quite challenging for the average lay person to follow.
For this reason, I present her interview in a different format, cutting and splicing pieces together to present a more cohesive and coherent presentation of her many important points. I would encourage you to watch the initial, very short, videos first, so you will be well-grounded, and if you are motivated, watch the entire interview at the bottom of this article.
Because there were so many surprising and important revelations in this interview I will present part 2 next week along with an interview with Bobby Kennedy, Jr which will revolve more on the vaccine issue.
Mikovits Doesn’t Believe SARS-CoV-2 Is the Cause of COVID-19
One of the most shocking revelations Mikovits reveals is that she doesn’t believe SARS-CoV-2 is the cause of COVID-19 but merely serves to activate or wake up a dormant XMRV infection. To support her assertion, she states that COVID-19 patients have the same cytokine signature as the gammaretrovirus XMRV, which she published many years ago.
XMRV stands for “xenotropic murine leukemia virus-related virus.” Xenotrophic refers to viruses that only replicate in cells other than those of the host species. So, XMRVs are viruses that infect human cells yet are not human viruses.2
The XMRV retrovirus is actually the virus that has the same cytokine storm signature as COVID-19, not coronaviruses, which are far more benign. (I delve into what retroviruses are in another section further below.)
Additionally, there may be other infections that also are contributing to the infection, such as Borelia and Babesia or parasites, which may be why some of the antiparasite drugs like Ivermectin and hydroxychloroquine are working.
Vaccine Gammaretroviruses Have Adapted and Are Aerosolized
Getting back to the issue of gammaretroviruses, Mikovits research showed that many of our vaccines are contaminated with them. How did this happen? In short, vaccine viruses were replicated and grown in animal cell cultures that were already contaminated with retroviruses. In other words, the root of the problem stems from the use of contaminated cell culture lines.
Vaccine manufacturing frequently involves the use of animal tissues and many vaccines are grown animal culture cell lines. As noted in the 2010 paper, “Of Mice and Men: On the Origin of XMRV,” published in Frontiers in Microbiology (which Mikovits did not work on):3
“The novel human retrovirus xenotropic murine leukemia virus-related virus (XMRV) is arguably the most controversial virus of this moment. After its original discovery in prostate cancer tissue from North American patients, it was subsequently detected in individuals with chronic fatigue syndrome from the same continent …
The detection of integrated XMRV proviruses in prostate cancer tissue proves it to be a genuine virus that replicates in human cells, leaving the question: how did XMRV enter the human population?
We will discuss two possible routes: either via direct virus transmission from mouse to human … or via the use of mouse-related products by humans, including vaccines. We hypothesize that mouse cells or human cell lines used for vaccine production could have been contaminated with a replicating variant of the XMRV precursors encoded by the mouse genome.”
Mikovits goes even further, explaining that, “It became clear in 2011 that these [gammaretro]viruses had adapted to become aerosolized.” This is a rather shocking finding, and this, Mikovits says, is what allows the gammaretroviruses to spread in laboratories from one cell line to another.
This could be related to research catalyzed by Charles Lieber, the former head of Harvard’s chemistry department, who is a nanoscience experts and was arrested by federal authorities earlier this year for working with the Wuhan Virology Institute.
Lab workers may also be inadvertently spreading them as they are using cell lines contaminated with retroviruses in vaccine production that could result in the spread of these retroviruses via the finished vaccine. Mikovits suspects COVID-19 may in fact be a type of vaccine-derived or vaccine-induced retroviral infection.
“I don't believe [COVID-19] is infection from without,” she says. “I believe the spread across  countries4 is from injection, and there's enough evidence to support that.”
SARS-CoV-2 — A Combination of SARS, Gammaretroviruses and HIV
Another of her theories is that SARS-CoV-2 is unlikely to have had a zoonotic origin but is likely synthetically produced. She believes it originated in and escaped or leaked from a biosafety laboratory. Mikovits believes both scenarios might be at play, where a lab-created virus, SARS-CoV-2, is causing serious infection and/or death only in those who have underlying retroviruses in their bodies.
Mikovits suspects that people who do not have retroviral infections, SARS-CoV-2 causes no or only mild symptoms. Another possibility is that the SARS-CoV-2 virus is the result of growing coronaviruses in retrovirus-contaminated cell lines, producing a gammaretrovirus-carrying virus.
According to Mikovits, her 2009 through 2011 work suggested 25 million to 30 million Americans were carriers of XMRVs and other gammaretroviruses. That estimate is over a decade old now so the number is likely far higher.
“There is a family of gammaretroviruses, most likely [in] contaminated blood supply and vaccines that are still to this day, almost 10 years later, being injected,” she says.
“We don't need an infectious virus if you inject the blueprint, if you inject the provirus. And … there are a lot of data to support COVID-19 is not SARS-CoV-2 alone, that it's SARS-CoV-2 and XMRVs (human gammaretroviruses) and HIV.”
Might Wearing a Mask Worsen Your Odds of Illness?
Mikovits is also highly critical of the recommendation (and in some places mandate) to wear a face mask or fabric cover such as a bandana around your face. She believes:
“Wearing a mask is going to cause more secretions and give more cells a home and amplify any viruses. [Wearing a mask is] immune suppressive; it's going to limit your body’s ability to produce Type 1 interferon.
You're driving the infection in yourself and you're not preventing the spread. [Instead], you're amplifying [replication of] not just [SARS-CoV-2] but also many other [viruses], including your XMRVs, influenza or other dormant viruses.
What keeps those dormant viruses dormant? Your natural killer (NK) cells, your mast cells, your macrophages. That's where you're getting the inflammatory signature.
So, every virus you amplify is driving the inflammatory signature, and you're going to get sick. [The resulting illness] doesn't have to be SARS-CoV-2 at all. You’re making yourself sick [by bringing dormant viruses out of dormancy]. It's insanity.”
Wearing a face mask after getting a live flu vaccine may further worsen your odds, she says. Why? Because you’re injecting three or more live flu virus strains into your body, which lowers your immune function. You’re also going to shed the viruses contained in the vaccine. If you wear a mask, Mikovits says, you’ll shed those viruses into the mask, which could encourage illness.
On the other hand, not wearing one might jeopardize the health of others. “If you're shedding [the viruses] into the air, you're going to make somebody else get another upper respiratory infection that's going to allow [SARS-CoV-2] to make them sicker,” she warns.
Why PCR Testing Is a Bad Idea
We’re also being lied to about the prevalence of infection. We’re seeing inflated case numbers for the simple reason that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention no longer requires doctors to do testing in order to confirm that a patient is in fact infected with SARS-CoV-2 or died from COVID-19. The numbers now include “suspected” and “assumed” cases.
Naturally, without widespread and accurate testing, there’s no way to get a clear idea of how prevalent the infection is, and how many actually get sick and die from it. The initial emphasis on PCR testing resulted in massive false positives and greatly inflated numbers of those infected.
As noted by Mikovits, confirming each case through testing matters greatly, as there are hundreds, if not thousands, of microbes that can cause upper respiratory infections, including seasonal influenza viruses. None of those should be lumped in with COVID-19 if we want to understand the true nature and danger of this disease.
What’s more, the initial decision to use RT-PCR (reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction) testing instead of antibody testing was an unwise one, as it virtually guaranteed an overestimation of the problem. RT-PCR is now being used to diagnose an active infection by detecting the presence of SARS-CoV-2 genetic material.5 However, by doing that, you end up with high rates of false positives. Mikovits explains how the RT-PCR test works:
“We're taking a swab and scraping some epithelial cells [from the back of the sinuses or throat] because that's what coronaviruses infect … We get a little RNA — because it's an RNA virus — we reverse-transcribe that, meaning write it backwards with enzymes in the lab, and then we amplify it [through a] polymerase chain reaction …
We're only taking a piece of the virus, we're not taking the whole virus … The first thing about [the PCR] test is, it was admitted by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the CDC that the tests put out by the CDC were contaminated.
And when you amplify something a million times, or 10 million times — whatever they do in the 30 cycles or so — it's logarithmic that RNA then is way overestimated … [But] no [viral] particle was identified or isolated from your saliva or from your nasal passages. Nobody took the secretions from your nose or your mouth and isolated the [actual] viruses.
[When I isolated] HIV in 1983, I isolated it from saliva. What you do is you take the virus and grow it in any human cell, in an appropriate cell line, and you make many copies. [Viral replication] means you have [a positive test for] that virus. Then you sequence the whole virus.
A PCR [test, on the other hand] can give you a lot of false positives [by amplifying RNA fragments].
We [also] showed the people that had [HIV] infection had antibodies; that they had been fully exposed and it was not a piece of nucleic acid in a biopsy or in their throat or in their nose. [A piece of nucleic acid] is not a virus. And it's certainly not infectious.
If RNA is there and in the tiniest amount, I'm not going to cough it on somebody, especially if I'm not coughing. I'm not going to breathe that [out and infect] somebody because there's no evidence of an infectious virus.”
Better Testing Strategy: Antibodies
Rather than using PCR testing, “what should have been done is test for antibodies,” Mikovits says. This is what was done in South Korea. An antibody test will tell you whether you had the infection at some point, and have developed a strong immune response or immunological memory that will allow you to fight the infection should you encounter it again.
“Epidemiology is not done with PCR. In fact, Kary Mullis who invented PCR, Nobel Laureate, and others, said PCR was never intended for diagnostic testing. So that puts that to bed.
It takes nothing to develop a really good serology [i.e., antibody] test … [It takes] a few weeks. It's pretty easy because the people who have recovered have antibodies. So, you isolate those antibodies, you take their plasma, you purify the antibodies, and then you can grow them.
Then you develop the tests... It's usually ELISA or Western Blot [which check for] the protein and the antibody binds. You form an immune complex, and you detect it with a dye. You can do that test with a finger stick … and it takes 15 minutes to get the answer, almost like a pregnancy test.”
My belief is that the use of PCR instead of a proper antibody test was intentional, as it inflates the case numbers. Mikovits agrees, saying “I wouldn't get any tests right now. I'd simply wash my hands and drink hot lemon water as I always do for any flu season.”
Evidence SARS-CoV-2 May Be a Lab-Created Virus
In the Epoch Times documentary, “Tracking Down the Origin of the Wuhan Coronavirus,” Mikovits details some of the evidence supporting the view that SARS-CoV-2 is not a naturally-evolved virus, but rather a laboratory concoction.
One piece of evidence is that the virus contains a protein envelope from the HIV virus. It’s also very similar to SARS which, according to bioweapons expert Francis Boyle, is an engineered bioweapon.
As explained by Mikovits, an Indian paper6,7 detailed the presence of Gp120, a protein envelope from the HIV virus. That paper was quickly retracted due to political pressure. However, Mikovits colleague, Luc Montagnier, made a similar discovery, finding Gp41 in the SARS-CoV-2 virus, which is the transmembrane domain of the HIV virus.
“The folks from India also had GAG. That's structural proteins. That gives you a clue that it wasn't a CRISPR technique or a pseudotyping where the envelope was expressed in a gene therapy-type of way. If it were CRISPR, you wouldn't put the GAG sequences in there.
What was done is, the virus was acquired as they grew SARS-CoV-2 in Vero-E6 cells — the monkey kidney cells where you get HIV.
Simian immune deficiency virus was the origin, and we were told all the way back in the 80s that somebody forgot to cook their food in Africa and a few promiscuous men spread this [HIV] virus around the world. So, you can see again the patterns of the lies and of what people end up believing.”
The addition of this envelope protein from HIV gives SARS-CoV-2 the ability to impair the immune system. It also contributes to its pathogenicity. Mikovits continues her explanation:
“The first thing is, you must grow a virus to make a lot of it. So, you grow it in cell lines. They didn't take [SARS-CoV-2] from the bat and it jumped into a human. It normally goes through another cell [from] a monkey or a smaller animal. The cell line that supports the growth and expansion [of viruses] are monkey kidney cells.
Maybe [SARS-CoV-2] is not engineered at all … but the end result is, now it not only infects the epithelial cells of the lungs, it infects the white blood cells, it infects the immune cells. We see the splenomegaly in large spleens, we're seeing penias, cytopenias. We're losing cells like HIV-killing T-cells …
So, it's got not only an expanded host range, but also disease symptoms that make no sense for a coronavirus.
Hence, we're killing people because they're treating an upper respiratory infection, and you're getting that inflammatory disease signature because you're infecting the very innate immune response, the macrophages, the monocytes, the natural killer cells, the T cells. And it's primarily the T-cells in the macrophages because those are the cells HIV 120 and Gp41 infect through CCR5 in the CD4 receptor.
So now you're going to lose your adaptive immune response, you're going to drive the inflammation. And it’s the fire [of inflammation] that does the tissue damage.”
Another piece that hints at SARS-CoV-2 being a manufactured virus is the construction of its spike proteins, which bind to ACE2 receptors to gain access into the cell. This appears to be an engineering feature. According to Mikovits, it’s quite clear that the spike proteins came from the original SARS virus, which also infects through ACE receptors.
There are also “single point mutations there that make it far more infectious, easier to spread,” she says, “and how those were acquired, nobody really can say.” At least not yet. Nanotechnology may also have been used to aerosolize it for ease of transmission.
“The nano[size] further increases the host range. So now you can go into every cell. Now you can go across the blood brain barrier. That's nano. Now you don't need a receptor. You can breathe it, it can go into every cell of the body. You don't need the gatekeeper. You don't need the receptor. You don't need the lock and key.”
Contaminated Cell Line Shared With Wuhan Biolab
According to Mikovits, one contaminated cell line is the Vero monkey kidney cell line called Vero E6, which was given by Fort Detrick — a U.S. Army Medical Command installation that hosts many of our national biological defense programs and houses the National Cancer Institute laboratory where she used to work — to the biosafety 4 laboratory (BSL-4) in Wuhan, China. This cell line is what the Wuhan lab used to grow and study coronaviruses, she says.
The Vero cell line is listed in the 2015 paper,8 “A SARS-like Cluster of Circulating Bat Coronaviruses Shows Potential for Human Emergence,” co-written by University of North Carolina researchers and Dr. Shi Zhengli, a Chinese virologist at the Wuhan lab who in 2010 published a paper9 discussing the weaponization of the SARS virus.
The contaminated Vero monkey kidney cells were also used in the production of polio vaccines, Mikovits notes. The original polio vaccines were passed through mice brains, as we didn't have cell lines in the 1930s when that vaccine was originally developed. According to Mikovitz, the spread of this Vero retrovirus has occurred through laboratory workers and hospital caretakers for decades.
“That's why the family studies we did were so important,” she says, referring to studies in which retroviral transmission was tracked to determine how it spread between family members.10
Alas, whenever patterns were detected, she was always directed to cover them up. Her refusal to hide the information from the public was what led to her firing in 2011. According to Mikovits, we’re seeing the same pattern of sweeping evidence under the rug now during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The patterns are the same as far as the science goes, and the patterns are the same as far as the political corruption, the plague of corruption, in covering up data,” she says.
Mikovits Pioneering Research in XMRV
In 2009, Mikovits got embroiled in controversy when she wrote a paper reporting that a retrovirus known as xenotropic murine leukemia virus-related virus may play a causal role in CFS and other diseases, including autism. I interviewed her about this intriguing and complex story in December 2018 (see linked sentence).
Her career background and past troubles also involved Fauci who, according to Mikovits, is guilty of scientific fraud. She details this in her book, “Plague of Corruption: Restoring Faith in the Promise of Science.”
According to Mikovits, Fauci does not appear to have changed his stripes, and is still misleading the public and hiding the truth about SARS-CoV-2, just like he did with the HIV virus and retroviral-associated diseases.
“I think the way to think about the background of what's going on right now is to go back to my first interactions with Dr. Tony Fauci when I was a 25-year-old lab technician in the National Cancer Institute. At that time, we had isolated — from blood and saliva — the lymphadenopathy virus.
[Lymphadenopathy-associated virus (LAV)] was the name given to it by Luc Montagnier, the Nobel Laureate, [who] first isolated and discovered that virus and its association with HIV/AIDS.11
In that situation, Fauci delayed the serology testing [to find out] who was exposed [to HIV]. It was politicized such that the only people that were [said to be] susceptible to getting infected with HIV was gay men [and] IV drug users.
The country was told not to worry about it. It was only spread through blood and body fluids and shouldn't be a problem for most other people. So, the testing that could have been done wasn't done because of political reasons, and the treatments weren't done because Fauci had patents, and — we didn't know this at the time — the wrong type of treatment was used. That led to the spread and [death] of millions worldwide …”
The Discovery of Human Gammaretroviruses
Ultimately, Mikovits and her colleagues discovered that the HIV virus was spread through a contaminated blood supply. After that, they proceeded to look into other “clearly retroviral-associated diseases,” such as CFS,12 certain kinds of autism, cancers, leukemias and lymphomas.
Gammaretroviruses13 are viruses that can cause cancer, leukemia and immune deficiencies in various animals. Examples include murine leukemia virus, feline leukemia virus and mink focus forming virus. As explained in a 2011 paper on gamma retroviruses:14
“Retroviruses are evolutionary optimized gene carriers that have naturally adapted to their hosts to efficiently deliver their nucleic acids into the target cell chromatin, thereby overcoming natural cellular barriers …
Retroviral vectors are fascinating and efficient delivery tools for the transfer of nucleic acids. As a hallmark, all retroviruses are capable of reverse transcribing their single stranded RNA genome into double stranded DNA, which will be stably integrated into the host cell genome.
As highly evolved parasites they act in concert with cellular host factors to deliver their nucleic acid into the nucleus, where they exploit the host cell’s machinery for their own replication and long-term expression occurs.”
The key take-home here is that retroviruses are “integrated into the host cell genome,” and infection can result in “long-term expression.” In other words, once they’re in your body, they can remain dormant, only to reactivate when conditions are favorable. In this regard, they’re quite different from your average virus that, when you’re exposed, invades your cells, replicates and causes symptoms, and is eventually eliminated from your body through your immune response.
In 2009, Mikovits and her team discovered and isolated the first human gammaretrovirus family of retroviruses, known then as XMRVs. As mentioned earlier, XMRV stands for “xenotropic murine leukemia virus-related virus.” Xenotrophic refers to viruses that only replicate in cells other than those of the host species. So, XMRVs are viruses that infect human cells yet are not human viruses.15
My Entire Interview With Judy Mikovits
To reiterate some of the key take-home messages Mikovits delivers in this interview:
• She believes COVID-19 — the disease — is not caused by SARS-CoV-2 alone, but rather that it’s the result of a combination of SARS-CoV-2 (which appears to have been manipulated to include components of HIV that destroys immune function). Previous XMRV (human gammaretroviruses) infection may facilitate SARS-CoV-2 to express the COVID-19 illness.
Put another way, COVID-19 may be initiated by SARS-CoV-2 but dependent upon a preexisting infection with and awakening of other viruses such as XMRV, gamma retroviruses, possibly Lyme and other coinfections, including parasites, and this is why anti-parasitic medications like hydroxychloroquine and Ivermectin help.
• Blood products and vaccines are contaminated with XMRVs that can damage your immune system and cause CFS, cancer and other chronic diseases. The viruses spread within laboratories as they have adapted to become aerosolized, and contaminate cell lines used in vaccine production and other viral research, including research on coronaviruses.
• Flu vaccines have spread a host of dangerous viruses around the world, which can then interact with SARS COV-2.
• It is possible to develop safer oral vaccines, and interferon alpha could be a valuable treatment alternative against COVID-19. Aside from interferons, other treatment strategies discussed in our interview include hyperbaric oxygen therapy, cannabinoids (CBD), peptide T and antioxidant support.
• SARS-CoV-2 is more dangerous and virulent than typical coronaviruses because it includes sequences of HIV, SARS and another virus, which enable it to infect more than just your respiratory epithelium. It can also infect blood cells and hematopoeitic organs such as the spleen.
Last but not least, if this topic intrigues you, be sure to pick up a copy of her new book, “Plague of Corruption: Restoring Faith in the Promise of Science.” You can also find more information on her website, plaguethebook.com.
Dr. Meryl Nass is a physician in Ellsworth, Maine, who in previous interviews has helped us understand the unforeseen consequences of mass vaccination — consequences that could end up impacting public health in a very negative way. Here, she discusses what she's been working on for decades, and how it relates to this current pandemic.
An outspoken supporter of health freedom, Nass provided scientifically referenced testimony to the Massachusetts legislature, December 3, 2019, when it was considering legislation to eliminate the religious vaccine exemption. This is now more relevant than ever, considering there is talk, worldwide, about implementing more or less mandatory vaccination against COVID-19. In her December 2019 testimony, Nass pointed out that:1
“There is no crisis (no epidemic of deaths or disabilities) from infectious diseases caused by lack of vaccinations … The elephant in the auditorium today is Pharma profits …
The pharmaceutical industry has undertaken a very ambitious campaign to legislate away vaccine exemptions in the United States and Canada. France, Italy and Germany have rescinded vaccine exemptions too, suggesting the campaign is worldwide …
It has been claimed that vaccines are, by nature, extremely safe. Yet vaccines are usually injected, bypassing all the body’s natural barriers. Even minute contamination or inadequate microbial inactivation can maim or kill … Vaccines have caused many autoimmune disorders, from Guillain-Barre syndrome to narcolepsy …
Vaccines appear safe because the immediate side effects are usually mild and temporary. Serious vaccine side effects often take weeks or months to surface, and by then it is difficult to know what caused them ...
A 2009 European swine flu vaccine (GSK’s Pandemrix) caused over 1,300 cases of severe narcolepsy, mostly in adolescents. This vaccine was linked to narcolepsy because 15 times the usual number of narcolepsy cases suddenly appeared in clinics ...
It should be apparent, but isn’t: Government waivers of vaccine liability discourage manufacturers from ensuring that the vaccines they sell are as safe and effective as possible.
The removal of vaccine exemptions, combined with liability waivers for vaccine side effects and recently loosened standards for licensing vaccines, create a highly toxic mix.”
Nass goes on to cite statistics showing why the claim that draconian laws are required to control the “crisis” of vaccine-preventable diseases is false. She also points out that:
“The bedrock expectation of medical ethics is that patients must give informed consent2 for all medical procedures, including vaccines. Informed consent means that patients must be informed about the procedure, have the right to refuse, and may not be coerced to accept it.
Isn’t withholding an education an extreme form of coercion? Without any discussion of its moral or ethical dimensions by media, medical societies or government officials, the requirement for informed consent for medical procedures, including vaccinations, vanishes in the blink of an eye when patients are not allowed the right to refuse.”
In 1992, Nass published a paper3 identifying the 1978-1980 Zimbabwe anthrax outbreak as a case of biological warfare. In 2011, I also interviewed her about the 2001 false flag anthrax attack in the U.S., on the heels of 9/11, and the dangers of the anthrax vaccine.
That manufactured crisis initiated the PATRIOT Act, one of the most severe compromises of our personal freedoms up to that point. Now, it appears they’re using the COVID-19 pandemic to take away even more freedoms.
There's strong evidence that this is precisely what's going on. Early in the interview, Nass summarizes our earlier discussion about the anthrax attack, so for a refresher, listen to the interview or read through the transcript. That attack, however, is also what allowed government funds to be allocated toward even more biological warfare research. She explains:
“Congress appropriated a lot of money for bio-terrorism, which is conjoined with pandemic planning. So, the same pot of money that goes into pandemics goes into Biological Defense. Much of it is duly used for research performed in high containment, BSL-3 and BSL-4 labs.
We don't call it biological warfare, but when you're designing pathogens to be more virulent than the originals in nature … essentially biological warfare research gets done. Things are called biological warfare if the intent is to create a weapon. It’s called biological defense if the intent is to design a bad bug so you can come up with defenses against that bug.
What has happened is that a lot of money was spent to develop new high containment labs — many, many more high containment labs … about $6.5 billion a year since 2001 has been designated for this biodefense. So, what we wound up with is hundreds of biodefense labs that have to be used and thousands, possibly 15,000, newly trained bio-defense researchers.
So, now we have cadres of people who are experts in coronaviruses or avian flu viruses, Ebola, Lassa, et cetera. And what most of that money … has been spent on, has been researching these pathogens. Even though the money was supposed to be spent on developing countermeasures and stockpiling countermeasures, to a great extent that did not happen …
As a result, we know a lot about highly virulent coronaviruses that have been created in labs around the world as well as in the U.S. and China, and we have absolutely no countermeasures that have been developed for coronavirus.”
Where Did SARS-CoV-2 Originate?
“Like everybody else, I wondered whether this was a natural jump from a bat or some other animal to humans and scratched my head about it,” Nass says. While she’s not a virologist, she does have a three-decade background in biological warfare and is aware of what’s been created in the past, what it takes, where they may be made, and how it has been done.
“So, I remained curious. Then on February 19 online, and in the March 7 print edition, a group of scientists had a "Correspondence" published in The Lancet, and it was a very curious piece to me. It didn't make sense.
And these were very prominent signatories, including the former head of the National Science Foundation, one of the former top people at CDC, the director of the Wellcome Trust, coronavirus researchers and funders, and other prominent people.
What they said is, ‘We need to quash the rumors that this came from a lab. That is a conspiracy theory and we need to get rid of it. They wrote:
‘The rapid, open, and transparent sharing of data on this outbreak is now being threatened by rumours and misinformation around its origins. We stand together to strongly condemn conspiracy theories suggesting that COVID-19 does not have a natural origin.’ 4
So, what this group was doing, in a very short, less than a page-long letter, was calling the possibility that SARS-2 might have come from a lab a conspiracy theory, and conflating any consideration of this possibility with threatening "transparent sharing of data" with China. And we couldn't interfere with that because we need to work with China to fight the coronavirus …
A couple of weeks later, an article came out in Nature Medicine, which said, ‘Here we have the scientific proof that this did not come from a lab’ …
And this second paper talked about the two things that have been identified by others as the most problematic new genetic segments on SARS-CoV-2 — two sites on the spike RNA, which seem to enhance the tropism and the binding/entry, so it makes it easier for the virus to get into human cells and expands the range of cell types the virus can enter.
And the Nature Medicine authors took these two regions and said: ‘Look, these mutations that are found in the new CoV-2 virus, which are not seen in any of the other coronaviruses anywhere near it genetically, must have come from the wild because these weren't created in the ways that we virologists would have chosen to create them.'
They said, 'We already have ways to create these mutations that would leave a lab signature, but there is no lab signature. And furthermore, we decided that based on computer modeling, the receptor binding domain did not use the ideal formulation we predicted. If a geneticist, a virologist, was doing this, they would have used our computer model. They didn't, and therefore this must have come from the wild.’
Well, that was a really odd argument because it didn't make any scientific sense. The authors did a lot of hand-waving, but failed to consider that other techniques could have been used to create this virus. Nor did the authors explain how such a virus, so ideally adapted to humans, could have developed in wildlife.
We should understand that those were two highly virulent and surprising mutations that could well have been added to a preexisting coronavirus, by a variety of techniques, including the old passage technique, still used today, which is what Louis Pasteur used to create the first live, attenuated rabies vaccine in 1885.
If you passage a virus through multiple human tissue cultures, or mice that contain, for example, humanized lung tissue, you force the virus to develop mutations that adapt it better and better to the new tissue. If the current coronavirus, as claimed by some scientists and seems borne out clinically, is better adapted to binding to the human ACE-2 receptor than to all known animal ACE-2 receptors, then it either:
1) mutated that way by jumping from wildlife to humans long ago, subsequently optimizing its ACE-2 receptor for humans over a prolonged period of time, or
2) was genetically engineered in a lab to do so, or
3) was passaged through cells with human ACE-2 receptors in order to accumulate the mutations that made it most virulent to humans.
I believe the same argument holds for the second unique coronavirus mutation, the addition of four amino acids to form a furin (polybasic) cleavage site. This site takes advantage of the human furin enzyme present intra- and extracellularly, which enhances viral entry into human cells and might convey other advantages to the virus.
There is absolutely no evidence to support the first hypothesis, that this virus has been circulating in humans for years. Thus, we are left with hypotheses 2 and 3: Each requires the human hand, only differing by the technique used. In my opinion, it is likely that both techniques (genetic engineering and serial passage) were used to produce the SARS-2 coronavirus, or its laboratory progenitors.”
We Absolutely Have the Know-How to Create SARS-CoV-2
Nass countered Nature Medicine’s narrative in a March 26, 2020, blog post,5 and again in an April 2, 2020, post, in which she wrote:6
“Why are some of the U.S.’ top scientists making a specious argument about the natural origin of SARS-CoV-2? … Prior to genetic engineering techniques being developed (1973) and widely used (since late 1970s), more ‘primitive’ means of causing mutations, with the intention of developing biological weapons, were employed …
They resulted in biological weapons that were tested, well-described, and in some cases, used … These methods can result in biowarfare agents that lack the identifiable signature of a microbial agent constructed in a lab from known RNA or DNA sequences.
In fact, it would be desirable to produce such agents, since it would be difficult to prove they were deliberately constructed in a lab. Here are just a few possibilities for how one might create new, virulent mutants:
- Exposing microorganisms to chemical or radiological agents that cause high mutation rates and selecting for desired characteristics
- Passaging virus through a number of lab animals or tissue cultures
- Mixing viruses together and seeking recombinants with a new mix of virulence factors”
Why Is Protecting the Narrative so Important?
Nass believes the old technique of passage is a likely candidate here. According to Nass, if you take viruses that are ill adapted to the human ACE-2 receptor but are adapted to another animal’s ACE-2 inhibitor, and then passage them in human tissue culture with the human ACE-2 receptor, over time, the viruses will develop improved receptor binding.
“It’s a likely way that this coronavirus might have been produced,” she says. “Anyway, I read that article and I said, ‘This is complete nonsense. I can't believe Nature Medicine published it.’ And the two groups of authors, the group from The Lancet and the group from Nature Medicine, have consistently referred to each other as they've been interviewed since.
Science Magazine did a short piece on The Lancet article. USA Today did a piece on the Nature of Medicine article. And then the head of the National Institutes of Health, Dr. Francis Collins, Tony Fauci's boss, wrote a blog post (or somebody wrote it for him) about the spurious Nature Medicine article.
He stated, ‘Now we have the scientific answer. This article in Nature Medicine has put to rest any thoughts that this could be a lab construct. That's a conspiracy theory. We have no room for conspiracy theories. This is the end of the discussion’ …
Now, the first thing I thought about the Nature Medicine article was, ‘Did these authors actually write it?’ Because it's such a piece of scientific nonsense than any real scientist reading it, if you can read the language, would not accept it, would dismiss it out of hand. Many other scientists have said exactly this, subsequently.
So, were the Nature Medicine authors asked to place their names on a piece of junk science in order to get it into a high impact journal and create this smoke screen — that "the science proves" (but only to the scientifically illiterate) this is a naturally occurring coronavirus?
There were five authors. I know of a couple of them. One was a virologist named Robert Garry, who I have had some interactions with over the last 22 years, another one was Ian Lipkin. Garry and coauthor Kristian Andersen both worked in Sierra Leone during the Ebola epidemic.
Garry was principal investigator for a project in Kenema, Sierra Leone before the outbreak started. Ian Lipkin's group at Columbia University claimed, just last year, to have finally found a bat in west Africa carrying Ebola virus; in other words, this Nature Medicine coauthor's group produced the long-sought evidence for a natural origin of west Africa's Ebola epidemic.7
I happened to show the Nature Medicine article to a friend of mine, Ed Hooper, who wrote a well-known book called, ‘The River,’ about the origin of AIDS: How did AIDS jump from monkeys into the human population?
Although many claim that it's due to Africans eating bush meat (from monkeys), Ed makes a very strong case that HIV made the species jump via oral polio vaccines that were prepared locally, in the Belgian Congo, from the kidneys of various types of monkeys that were locally caught. The vaccine was designed by Hilary Koprowski in the U.S., and given to millions of Africans.
Ed Hooper has put out additional evidence in the intervening 20-plus years since he wrote ‘The River,’ that it's much more likely that the jump into humans occurred because the oral polio vaccine grown on monkey kidneys was contaminated by monkey viruses, and that those monkey kidneys probably contained the precursor to HIV.
Interestingly, three of these Nature Medicine authors had challenged him on his AIDS origin theory about two decades ago, and now they're challenging the coronavirus origin theory, which made me wonder, ‘Are these five Nature Medicine authors … repeatedly trotted out by the political medical establishment to try to push false narratives that are politically desirable?"
Compelling Evidence SARS-CoV-2 Is a Lab Creation
May 19, 2020, I reviewed evidence presented in a Medium article8 written by Yuri Deigin, as well as a video presentation of this evidence done by Chris Martenson, Ph.D. If you missed “The Smoking Gun Proving SARS-CoV-2 Is an Engineered Virus,” you may want to review it after you’re done with Nass’ interview.
Both sources go into great scientific depth, explaining why SARS-CoV-2 cannot be the result of a natural mutation. Deigin doesn’t actually suggest that it is manmade, but provides strong evidence that one needs to consider before coming to the conclusion that it’s of natural origin. Nass comments on Deigin’s work:
“[Deigin] did his own research and published a massive discussion of all the coronavirus research that has gone on since 1999 that is relevant to SARS-CoV-2, and he particularly discusses these two mutations: One, the furin cleavage site and the other is the receptor binding area.
He talks about all the research that's been done on coronaviruses, the different ways you can make these changes, and how changes like what we're seeing now have in fact been created by coronavirus researchers over the past 20 years. And he analyzes everything very, very finely. It's like Ed Hooper's book. He goes in and out and around and discusses every aspect.
When you finish reading that article, you are convinced that it's almost certain that these two mutations were put there deliberately.
Whether they were done by passage, whether they were done by CRISPR or whether another method was used, scientists did know the implications, in terms of increasing virulence, of both of these mutations. So, I invite you to read that piece.”
Many Nations Funded 'Gain of Function' Coronavirus Research
We now know that the National Institutes of Health, under Fauci’s leadership, funded gain-of-function research, or research on how to increase the virulence of pathogens, with coronaviruses for about two decades.
When the White House temporarily suspended U.S. government funding for that kind of research for MERS, SARS and avian flu in 2014, some work may have shifted over to the Wuhan Virology Institute in China and continued anyway. Other similar research, such as Ralph Baric's at UNC, was given special permission to continue despite the temporary suspension. The funding ban was lifted in 2017. Nass weighs in:
“Coronavirus research, including gain-of-function research over the last 20 years, has been done in many countries in Europe, in many labs in the U.S., in Japan, Singapore, China, Australia and probably other places. And it has often been funded by multiple countries.
So, funders have included the Australian government, different branches of NIH, but primarily Fauci's NIAID, the National Science Foundation and USAID — surprising because you would think USAID is an aid agency.
There have also been organizations like the EcoHealth Alliance, which have served as pass-throughs for the funding. The NIAID or USAID would give money to the EcoHealth Alliance and then EcoHealth Alliance would dole it out to the BSL-4 lab in Wuhan and other places and would participate with them in research.
Most of the most prominent researchers have worked in multiple countries' labs, along with foreign colleagues. It's very complicated. There's a lot of back and forth. Europe has funded this research too.
So, Dr. Zhengli Shi has worked in the United States and our researchers have worked in China. Nature Medicine coauthor Ian Lipkin has a post in China, and he was an expert who advised the Saudis on MERS, which is a cousin of SARS, and advised the Chinese on the 2003 SARS. He is affiliated with EcoHealth Alliance too.
He was over in China at the beginning of this SARS-2 pandemic. Ed Holmes, a coauthor of the Nature Medicine article, is an evolutionary biologist at Sydney University who also holds a position in China. So, these people work together, and … the Chinese, the Australians, the Europeans and the Americans fund all this work … Some of this research is funded by five different institutes from three or four different countries.
Gain-of-function research has been controversial since it started being openly discussed. In 2014, in the United States, there was a pause on U.S. government funding of gain-of-function research, but only for three organisms: MERS, SARS and avian flu.
Probably this occurred because researchers announced success in creating lethal avian flu viruses that had gained the ability to spread via aerosol. And because, at the same time, there was widespread media reporting on lab accidents in the U.S., especially at CDC's, NIH's and the Army's high containment labs. These accidents had exposed workers at CDC and over 100 other labs to live anthrax spores and live avian flu.
There was a lot of controversy in the scientific literature over gain-of-function. However, even though about 20 research projects were initially paused in 2014, seven were given special permission to continue. Here is what U.S. government scientists wrote about this in 2015:
‘The recent safety lapses at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the NIH that could have resulted in exposure to anthrax and smallpox, respectively, have diminished public confidence in the ability of even high-containment laboratories to mitigate the risk of accidental release of pathogens of potential harm ... public tolerance of that risk may be the ultimate determinant of what types of research are allowed to proceed.
… ‘As recent lapses at high profile laboratories have illustrated, there remains the potential that bacterial and viral strains can escape even the most secure environments.’9
At the end of 2017, the pause was removed, new guidelines were issued but not made mandatory, and everybody was allowed to go back and do whatever gain-of-function research they wanted.”
Nass on Mikovits Retrovirus Hypothesis
I recently interviewed Judy Mikovits, Ph.D., a cellular and molecular biologist who suspects SARS-CoV-2 isn’t the actual or sole cause of COVID-19. Rather, she believes the illness is a coinfection of SARS-CoV-2 with a preexisting XMRV gamma retrovirus infection.
One possibility she has raised is that SARS-CoV-2 activates this underlying, latent infection. She supports this thesis with the fact that the cytokine storm signature of COVID-19 is inconsistent with coronavirus, but very consistent with the gamma retrovirus infections she studied.
“What she says is very interesting,” Nass says. “Some of it I think is incorrect and some of it is correct, and there's so much of it that it's very hard to separate … Even though she says coronaviruses don't do X, Y and Z, this is a very new coronavirus. It has some unique features.
What we've talked about so far is only relevant to the spike protein, which is only 13% of the genome. We haven't even begun to explore changes that may have occurred in the rest of the genome. So, I don't think we have the evidence yet to say that this coronavirus alone can't do what it seems to be doing …
Some people are saying there are two, three or four small, six to 10 amino acid segments that look like bits of HIV, and they're inserted in different places. They may have effects on the immune response. I don't know. I think that information will gradually appear … I think I've got to read her book [‘Plague of Corruption’] … and see what the data show …
In my own research, I have found Anthony Fauci to be a hypocritical fraud, who pretends he knows nothing about coronaviruses, [yet] he's funded over $100 million of coronavirus research out of NIAID. He looks so gentle and he doesn't give you any details about anything, but he knows a lot of details. So, I hope she confirms my suspicions about Fauci.”
Potential COVID-19 Vaccine Dangers
As discussed in “Fast-Tracked COVID-19 Vaccine — What Could Go Wrong?” COVID-19 vaccines are being fast-tracked, eliminating animal trials and going straight to human trials.
Speaking of Fauci, Moderna was granted a fast-track designation for its mRNA-1273 vaccine by the FDA on May 12, 2020.10,11 This vaccine is sponsored by Fauci’s NIAID, who, echoing Bill Gates’ edicts, has been calling for social distancing and other lockdown measures until a vaccine becomes available. Moderna is currently preparing to enter Phase 2 trials. No results from Phase 1 have been published as of this writing.
“They're doing human trials of at least two vaccines in the U.S. now. So, I'll tell you what I know. First of all, the Moderna is an mRNA vaccine. We haven't had an mRNA vaccine before, so we don't know what that's going to do in people.
Therefore, it seems unconscionable to give it to people before you test it in animals, so that you can at least have some idea what the side effects might be …
There [have also been] many [experimental coronavirus vaccines in the past], not just the trials at Galveston with Peter Hotez, where four different types of vaccines against coronaviruses all failed. There have been other vaccine platforms attempted for coronaviruses that also failed.”
In one such study, discussed in my recent interview above with Robert Kennedy Jr., ferrets showed an extraordinary good serological antibody response to the vaccine, but when the animals were then exposed to the wild virus, they were overtaken by a cytokine storm response, now known as “paradoxical immune enhancement.” In at least one trial, all the ferrets died.
“Hotez [has stated that] in their animal experiments, the vaccinated animals fared worse when they were exposed to the disease than if they had not gotten the vaccine,” Nass says.
“[In] experiments done in the 1960s, an RSV (respiratory syncytial virus) vaccine [Editor’s note: RSV is similar to coronavirus] … was given to children. Several of the children died — again, with this same cytokine storm problem arising. So, I think this is a vaccine you should tread very lightly with, and it should never have been given to people before it was given to animals.”
COVID-19 Vaccine — Global Experiment Without Precedent
Nass also addresses the issue of how human trials are done, and warns people about joining them without being fully informed about the potential risks. This is particularly pertinent for COVID-19 vaccine trials, considering the lethal failures of such vaccines in the past.
You also need to understand that when you participate in a trial, you are not eligible to receive compensation for any injuries you sustain. As for taking the vaccine once it becomes publicly available, Nass says:
“I'll just point out that Ralph Baric, the top coronavirus researcher in the United States, at the University of North Carolina, said himself in an interview a couple months ago that vaccines aren't going to work in the older population for which this disease is most risky …
Having dealt with many people who've died or developed chronic illnesses, all sorts of terrible complications from anthrax vaccine and smallpox vaccine, and sometimes other vaccines, I try to do a careful risk-benefit analysis before recommending a vaccine to any patient.
Sometimes I think it makes sense for people to be vaccinated, but their own situation, where they live, their age group, who they're exposed to, where they're traveling to are all important factors that would help you to formulate that risk-benefit assessment. And I don't think vaccines should be looked on as risk-free. They're clearly not risk-free. Medical interventions should be done thoughtfully …
Another problem … on the FDA website,12,13 there is a page that talks about the problem of growing vaccines in cells14 that may have oncogenes or cancer causing viruses in them, and what research FDA is trying to do to deal with this. So, the FDA acknowledges this serious potential risk from some vaccines… on the FDA website.”
Level 3 and 4 Biosafety Labs Pose Severe Risk to Human Health
The map below was published in the journal Science15 in 2007 and reprinted in Asia Times16 April 6, 2020, showing the proliferation of high-containment labs in the U.S. A USA Today investigation published in 2015 put the number of BSL 3 and 4 labs in the U.S. around 200,17 and Boyle estimates there are about 400 worldwide.18
In closing, Nass points out there have been many accidental leaks from BSL 3 and 4 labs, causing many deaths. Improperly inactivated vaccines have also claimed many lives.
“Thirty years ago when I was writing papers about the potential risks of biological defense research we had a lot less biological defense research going on. And the risks were significant. Everybody agrees that these labs leak.
I told you there were maybe 600 or more BSL-3s in the United States19 and hundreds of others around the world. There are about 200 reports of lab accidents, mostly exposures of lab personnel to pathogens, in the high-containment labs in the U.S., yearly.20
So, let me actually give you a few examples from a paper by Martin Furmanski, a physician who wrote about lab escapes.21
He pointed out a lab in England. There were several smallpox escapes from that lab to a room below. Two people died. After the second escape happened, I think it was around 1980, the lab director killed himself.
There were huge outbreaks of Venezuelan equine encephalitis. Thousands and thousands of animals and people [were affected] in Latin America, and it turned out to be due to improperly inactivated vaccines. So, the disease they were vaccinating all these livestock for was actually giving them the disease and giving it to humans also. You don't hear about that.
He points out that the worldwide 1977 H1N1 outbreak … started in China or Russia, probably from long-frozen virus that had been thawed, because that particular strain, H1N1, had not circulated in the world for 21 years, and genetically it looked almost identical to the strains that were around in the late '40s and 1950s, early '50s. So that worldwide 1977 flu pandemic was due to a lab escape.
And Furmanski postulates that the reason the virus was thawed was to do vaccine research because of the fear, in the U.S. in 1976-77, that a deadly swine influenza pandemic might occur … leading to a self-fulfilling prophecy. But fortunately, the virus that circulated was much less deadly than the feared 1918 strain.
[The U.S. government] began a swine flu vaccine program in 1976 after one soldier died at Fort Dix in 1976 of a unique swine flu strain. Frightened that a scenario like the 1918 flu pandemic might emerge, the United States public health agencies got together with the U.S. vaccine manufacturers to create, very rapidly, a swine flu vaccine to save the United States. It was an abysmal failure.
As things progressed, the manufacturers refused to produce vaccine unless the government gave them a waiver of liability for possible vaccine injuries. This they received.
First of all, there was no outbreak. The virus had stopped circulating and disappeared. Had the people at the CDC and HHS been honest with the American public, they would have told them, ‘Hey, there's no outbreak. We're just going to cancel the vaccine program. We don't need it.’ But the vaccine program had developed a life of its own.
Harvey Fineberg co-authored a wonderful book [‘The Swine Flu Affair: Decision-Making on a Slippery Slope’22,23] about the vaccine program, for the National Academy of Sciences, which the subsequent DHHS (then HEW) Secretary, Joseph Califano, had requested.
I recommend it. It’s a fabulous read because Fineberg was working under the Secretary of Health and Human Services, so he was able to interview everybody involved in government who had been part of the program.
He tells you the inside story of what went on during that year. All the infighting, all the different reasons why a vaccine was made for a disease that didn't exist. And then, [after the vaccine was] given to 45 million Americans, [it was] found to cause Guillain-Barre syndrome, about 30 people died and 4,000 people applied for damages from the federal government.
This was the first time the government gave a liability waiver to vaccine manufacturers. And I think it was what gave them the idea that in the future they could get liability waivers for all their vaccines.”
You can download a free PDF copy of “The Swine Flu Affair” on The National Academies of Sciences website.24 You can also learn more about the failed 1977 swine flu vaccination campaign in “How Does COVID-19 Compare to Spanish Flu?"
Many people know that Jeff Bezos is the richest person in the world and the founder of Amazon. They have seen pictures of him and perhaps heard about his high-profile 2019 divorce. But many are not aware of the darker side of Bezos' Amazon empire, including business ventures that raise questions about privacy, surveillance and product safety.
A Frontline documentary, "Amazon Empire: The Rise and Reign of Jeff Bezos," released in February 2020, exposes the backstory of the Amazon CEO's rise to power and the global implications of his rampant ambition and aggressive ventures.
It took Frontline a year to create "Amazon: The Rise and Reign of Jeff Bezos" and it includes many interviews with his top lieutenants, almost all of whom are men. What emerges from people who know Bezos and worked with him is not so much a picture of a power-driven despot as someone with uncanny visions of how people can be engineered and data can be exploited.
Customer Is King and so Is Data
As a Princeton graduate working on Wall Street, Bezos is largely credited with introducing the idea of basing financial analyses on data, an approach that had not been done before. He founded Amazon in 1995 as a seller of books, but even then collection of data was crucial to the business plan.
Right from the start, Bezos "treated the site as a laboratory where he studied customer behavior," says the film. According to Randy Miller, former director of pricing and product management at Amazon:1
"We could track how a customer navigated through the site. So we could see what you looked at; we could also see what you paused at; we could see what you put in your basket but didn’t order; we could see what you put in your basket and did order.
So that’s when we started realizing, man, this [data collection] is rich, this is rich rich rich. And so we’ve used it for everything."
Even when it only sold books, Amazon's ruthless business philosophy of using size to annihilate competitors was seen. Amazon could forego profits to gain market share and monopolize the marketplace, unlike smaller companies that couldn't afford to lose money. Undercutting competitors enabled Amazon to deal a deathblow to brick and mortar retailers who also had to pay taxes, unlike online Amazon.
Dennis Johnson, CEO of Melville House Books, says he was shocked when Amazon required 4% of profits to sell his books, which he considered a kickback. Miller admits that Amazon played dirty with booksellers.2
"In order to bring them into line, we would actually take them out of automated merchandising, take their prices up to list price. We would put references on the product page, their product page saying, 'You want this cheaper? You want this book on this topic for a way cheaper price? Click here.'
And we’d send them to whoever we thought their worst competitor was. That was how Amazon forced their vendors to comply. But that's an old Walmart trick. It wasn’t like Amazon created that."
New Initiative Solidified Amazon's Power
Two new initiatives turned Amazon into the force it is today, reshaping the retail marketplace forever. First was its decision to enlarge its offerings beyond books to include almost all merchandise. Sellers and manufacturers could avail themselves of Amazon's 12 million customers as Amazon became America's biggest "mall," reaching more customers than they could hope to on their own.
According to Yahoo Finance, 58% of Amazon sales3 are now from third parties. The second initiative was Bezos' decision to launch Amazon Prime in 2005, which was "the most successful membership program in history," according to Scott Galloway, a professor at NYU Stern School of Business.
Amazon Prime, a program in which customers pay a minimal yearly fee and receive free two-day shipping, later upgraded to one-day shipping, again stemming from Amazon's willingness to undercut competitors even when it meant foregoing immediate profits.
Though Amazon had few warehouses at the time, the bold move, according to James Thomson, formerly a senior manager and business head of Amazon Services4 at Amazon:
“… 'is one of the most important drivers of Amazon’s growth. When you go on [Amazon] and look to buy a product and it’s available in two days, delivered to your door anywhere in the country, that Amazon Prime program becomes a mechanism that keeps bringing you back as a customer to keep buying and keep searching for new products on Amazon."
Amazon also launched its own delivery service in 2013, creating a system that "would rival Fed Ex or UPS," says the documentary. The company made delivery vans small enough to be exempt from federal regulation and also dodged liability. When the vans were involved in accidents, which happened with regularity, Amazon claimed the vans "contractors" and it had no legal responsibility.
The Sale of Defective and Fraudulent Products Grows
With Amazon Prime, the company locked in customer loyalty and undercut competitors. But it also put customers at risk of defective and fraudulent products, according to the documentary. If you buy something harmful or defective at Walmart or Target, you can sue them, but Amazon says it is not legally responsible if customers are hurt by products sold by third parties on the site.
According to Rachel Johnson Greer, a former product safety manager at Amazon, when you create your Amazon account, you accept this indemnification of the company when you assent to the terms and conditions, though it is likely many do not realize this.
There have been reports of Amazon selling hair driers and hoverboards that caught fire, school supplies made with toxic metals, and other unsafe or mislabeled products. These dangers are especially concerning since 77% of all vitamins and supplements sold online are sold by Amazon. Only 2.3% of online vitamin and supplement sales come from brick and mortar retailers.
One example of the many fraudulent and misbranded products that have infiltrated Amazon was a counterfeit probiotics supplement sold last year by Procter & Gamble called Align.5 According to Wired, Procter & Gamble spokesperson Mollie Wheeler said in an email:
"We are aware that some counterfeit Align product was sold on Amazon via third parties ... Amazon has confirmed they have stopped third party sales of the Align products in question and Amazon is only selling Align product received directly from P&G manufacturing facilities.'"
Amazon also acknowledged problems with counterfeiters.6
"We investigate every claim of potential counterfeit thoroughly, and often in partnership with brands, and in the rare instance where a bad actor gets through, we take swift action, including removing the item for sale, permanently banning bad actors, pursuing legal action, and working with law enforcement when appropriate.
We have taken these actions against the bad actors in question and proactively notified and refunded customers."
Anyone who buys from Amazon should be aware that companies selling knock-off products are not regulated under the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act of 1994 (DSHEA) as legitimate supplement products are. (As a matter of disclosure, my store, in which I sell supplements along with a number of other products, is an online entity.)
Other Problematical Amazon Enterprises
Over the years, Amazon has moved into enterprises that seriously threaten privacy. By now, many people have heard of Amazon's Alexa and Echo products, which so many homes unthinkingly install. While they may think of Alexa as an assistant or helpmate, they often do not realize it is a two-way street in which the device listens to and surveils its environments. According to Meredith Whittaker, codirector of the AI Now Institute:
"Alexa is one more way for Amazon to gather extremely valuable data. And this data collection is extremely important to this business model. It’s extremely hard to do, and convincing people to just deploy something like this in their home is a brilliant trick."
Frontline reporter James Jacoby asked Dave Limp, senior vice president of devices and services at Amazon, how the trick was accomplished. "How is it that you convinced tens of millions of people to put what is essentially a listening device in their homes?" he asks. Limp replies:
"Well, I would first disagree with the premise. It doesn't — it's not a listening device. The device in its core is — it has a detector on it — we call it internally a "wake-word engine" — and that detector is listening — not really listening, it's detecting one thing and one thing only, which is the word you've said that you want to get the attention of that Echo."
Limp however, does admit that the devices could deceive.
"If I could go back in time and I could be more clear ... how we were using human beings to annotate a small percentage of the data, I would, for sure. What I would say, though, is that once we realize that customers didn't clearly understand this, within a couple of days we added an opt-out feature so that customers could turn off annotation if they so chose.
And then within a month or two later we allowed people to auto-delete data, which they also asked for within that time frame. We're not going to always be perfect, but when we make mistakes, I think the key is that we correct them very quickly on behalf of customers."
Other Ventures Create Privacy Threats
Another hugely successful Amazon initiative was the cloud computing service, Amazon Web Services, that Bezos built in 2013. The service got a huge boost, says the film, when it was contracted to design a computing cloud for the CIA for $600 million. According to James Bandler, a reporter at ProPublica:
"The CIA contract was probably one of the best things that happened to Amazon's cloud business. It lifted all doubts about the security of the cloud and about whether you could trust Amazon with your most precious data.”
The contract bestowed instant credibility on Amazon, agrees Brad Stone, author of "The Everything Store" about Amazon. In the film he says:
"The message to the world is, if the CIA trusts Amazon with its data, then maybe other companies and government institutions can as well."
Another controversial Amazon venture is Ring, a doorbell camera app dubbed "the new neighborhood watch" by Amazon. Ring has been exploited by hackers that spied on people in their homes. Amazon also used police officers to promote the product. Says Whittaker:
"You have Amazon in partnership with police departments, who have basically turned policemen into Avon salespeople for Amazon Ring. They have given police departments talking points and marketing materials to encourage the installation of Ring by community residents. None of this was public knowledge."
A related app, Amazon Rekognition Video, that allows people to track, detect, recognize, extract and moderate faces from video,7 has also been widely embraced by police departments. Jacoby asks Andy Jassy, the CEO of Amazon Web Services, how the public would know if the app is being used on them since there is no public audit. Jassy says:
"I don’t think we know the total number of police departments that are using facial recognition technology. I mean there’s — you can use any number — we have 165 services in our technology infrastructure platform, and you can use them in whatever conjunction, any combination that you want.
We know of some [police departments], and the vast majority ... are using it according to the guidance that we’ve prescribed, and when they’re not, we have conversations. And if we find that they’re using it in some irresponsible way we won’t allow them to use the service and the platform."
How Amazon would disallow use of the app is unclear since there are "few laws governing the use of this technology," the film notes.
Recent Amazon Ventures
In 2013, Bezos enlarged his empire by buying the struggling Washington Post.8 In 2019, the paper put its sights on me, running an inflammatory hit piece with untruths about my product claims and vaccine stances.
It also looks as though Amazon's glide path may be faltering. In 2019, the Pentagon chose Microsoft over Amazon for a $10 billion contract9 and Amazon canceled its plans for a New York City corporate campus when lawmakers fiercely objected.10 In 2020, Amazon was slapped with a class action antitrust suit alleging that it has monopolized the online retail marketplace.11
Amazon is also trying to capitalize on the COVID-19 pandemic, reports The Verge.12 It has proposed legislation to indemnify seller hosts, like Amazon, from price gouging conducted by a host’s third-party sellers.
In addition to misbranded products and surveillance of customers, Amazon also has workers who suffer under its reign. By June it will remove a "combat pay" increase it had added to its overstressed warehouse workers’ salaries and compress its delivery times to compete with Shopify, Target and Costco.13
In addition, more than 130 Amazon workers, already likely stressed with pandemic work increases, are believed to have been infected with COVID-19, reports The Verge.14 The documentary includes many testimonials from abused Amazon warehouse workers. Buyers beware.
Bacteria and viruses may gain entry to your body through what is known as a “Trojan Horse.” The term grew from Greek mythology and was first recorded in Homer's 8th century B.C. epic poem, The Iliad.1 The Trojan horse was a diversion used to sneak an army into the fortified city of Troy.
As the myth is told, the Trojan War was started by the Greek god Zeus to reduce the human population and reclaim Helen. Unable to achieve their goal in a straightforward attack, the Greeks left an enormous wooden horse outside the city as a "present" for the Trojans.
The horse was wheeled into the city. Late at night soldiers emerged from the belly of the horse and opened the city gates for the Greek army, who then soundly defeated the Trojans. Others have used similar methods throughout history. More recently, hackers use Trojan horse software to inflict damage on your computer or data.2
Is Your Cellphone a Trojan Horse?
Researchers believe their recent review of the literature “exposes the possible role of mobile phones as a ‘Trojan horse’ contributing to the transmission of microbial infections in epidemics and pandemics.”3
Mobile devices have become ubiquitous in society. People take them from the kitchen to the bedroom and bathroom. They are a potential breeding ground for bacteria, fungi and viruses, which the researchers wrote may "constitute a potential global public health risk for microbial transmission."
Prompted by the current pandemic, they evaluated data from 56 articles from 24 countries. The study was led by Lotti Tajouri from Bond University in Australia. They noted that golden staph and E. coli were some of the more common pathogens found on cell phones. Tajouri called mobile devices “five-star hotels with premium heated spas, free buffet for microbes to thrive on.”4
Bacteria and viruses do well on cellphones since the devices are temperature controlled, frequently in people's hands and next to their faces. As detailed in a press release,5 Tajouri said super users may handle their devices up to 5,000 times every day and cautioned individuals to think of their phone as a third hand:
"We know from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that 80 per cent of all infections are associated with our hands. You can wash your hands as many times as you like — and you should — but if you then touch a contaminated phone you are contaminating yourself all over again.”
He cautions people to clean their phones at least once a day. While more information is needed to determine the role contaminated cell phones may play in spreading contagious diseases, Tajouri points out they are with us everywhere and cleaning may make a difference in slowing the spread of viruses.
More Bacteria Than a Toilet Seat
Results from several studies have demonstrated that cell phones carried by health care workers are significantly contaminated with pathogens. In one of them involving 386 participants, some of the most predominant pathogens were Staphylococcus, Acinetobacter, E. coli and Klebsiella pneumoniae.6
The researchers found health care workers’ phones were 100% contaminated and could be a potential source of hospital-acquired infections. In a separate study comparing the cell phones of health care workers and non-health care workers, Iranian researchers found the predominant organism from those working in surgery was methicillin-resistant staph aureus (MRSA).7
Among those in the ICU, they found Acinetobacter was followed closely by MRSA. In non-health care workers’ mobile phones, 46% grew six different types of bacteria.
In a different study in 2016, however, S. epidermidis was the most predominant bacterium found on 84% of 100 cellphones examined, with S. aureus coming in at 54%.8 In hospitals, these infections have become so prevalent that operating room managers began looking at cellphones as possible contaminants causing infections in patients as early as 2007.9
In a later analysis10 looking directly at how infections occur in prosthetic joint replacements in the operating room, researchers said:
“These microorganisms can all be part of normal skin flora; hence, direct inoculation at the time of the operation as well as airborne contamination are the most likely causes of these infections.”
In other settings, researchers from Germany were interested in evaluating the touch screens on smartphones of individuals outside of health care.11 They randomly chose 60 students and found most identified bacteria were typically found on human skin, mouth, lungs and intestinal tract.
Five of the 10 identified bacteria were opportunistic pathogens. Other scientists found a significant association related to the number of bacteria, the age of the phone and the sharing of phones among individuals.12
The number of times you check your phone throughout the day, as well as how often you use them during activities when you would normally wash your hands, increases the risk these small devices are carrying more pathogenic bacteria and viruses than you might imagine.
Adding to this, they are frequently pressed up against your face and may be transferring bacteria to your hands, which you subsequently may use to scratch your eye or touch your mouth. A study in 2012 from the University of Arizona made headlines when they found cell phones may carry “10 times more bacteria than most toilet seats.”13
Clean Your Phone Without Damaging It
More specific to the current COVID-19 pandemic, a recent analysis of 22 studies evaluated the persistence of coronaviruses on inanimate surfaces. Published in the Journal of Hospital Infection, the data included SARS-CoV-1 and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS).14
Researchers found the viruses can persist on metal, glass or plastic for up to nine days. Cleaning surfaces with 62% to 71% ethanol or 0.5% hydrogen peroxide could disinfect within one minute. However, while alcohol and hydrogen peroxide kill pathogens, they are not friendly to your cell phone.15
The amount of damage will vary depending on the device. At the start of the pandemic, Apple changed their cleaning recommendation to 70% isopropyl alcohol to clean nonporous surfaces. Just remember, it’s important to keep moisture away from any of the openings on the device and avoid using bleach of any kind, as this can permanently damage your phone.
A second option is to purchase a screen protector for the touchpad and display. Glass screen protectors can be safely cleaned with isopropyl alcohol. They can be a challenge to install but have the additional benefit of helping to reduce scratches, cracks and other damage.
Phone sanitizers that use UVC light to break down pathogens may also be purchased to clean your phone.16 As Tajouri points out, no matter how clean your hands are, once you touch the screen of your phone you have contaminated your hands once again.
To reduce the number of pathogens that reach your face, nose and mouth, consider using a headset with a microphone to make phone calls. You should also clean your phone on a daily basis, wash your hands frequently for 20 seconds each time and keep your hands away from your face.
Use Linked to Increased Risk of Mitochondrial Damage
Cellphones, and in particular smartphones, have become so commonplace that apps are being developed to track and trace people with the SARS-CoV-2 virus, and to send communications to people and issue quarantine guidelines.17 Most agree there is an issue with your data no longer being private.
While developers are trying to put mechanisms in place to address the question of privacy, apps are being downloaded by millions around the world. Fitness trackers are being designed to monitor your symptoms and artificial intelligence applications are underway to diagnose if you're sick based on your voice or your cough.18
Politicians, scientists and vaccine-driven magnates are pushing to use mobile devices, to which many have become addicted, to reach their own end goals. Data show that even when you don't have the phone in your hand, it may have a distracting influence on your performance of complex tasks.19,20
This may be the result of what programmers want to achieve in a process they call "brain hacking."21 Essentially, programs are designed to capture your attention and draw you back for more interaction. Across several digital platforms, such as Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and games, this may have led to a growing number of users who are addicted to their smartphones.22
Your Phone Is Unlikely to Spread COVID-19
Although you may be able to culture different bacteria, viruses and fungi from the surface of your phone — thus emphasizing the importance of cleaning your cellphone — the CDC is clear:23 "COVID-19 is thought to spread mainly through close contact from person-to-person." They recommend avoiding close contact with people since the virus likely is spread in respiratory droplets from people who are infected. These droplets are produced when a person sneezes, coughs or speaks.
While scientists have noted the virus appears to spread easily between people, it does not spread quickly in other ways, such as after touching an object such as a cellphone. The CDC recommends the best ways to prevent the illness are to avoid exposure by washing your hands and keeping approximately 6 feet between people.
Because scientists are still learning about the virus — even though the potential for spread from contaminated objects is low — the CDC also recommends routinely cleaning and disinfecting objects that are frequently touched and used.
Much of the concern surrounding getting infected from surfaces stem from a paper in the New England Journal of Medicine.24 Researchers were able to find the virus on some surfaces for up to three days. However, it wasn’t clear that people could get infected from the virus found on inanimate objects.
The CDC recommendations correlate with epidemiological data and surface testing. Leading German scientist Hendrik Streeck is an infectious disease specialist at the University Hospital in Bonnhas. He spoke with a reporter from the Daily Mail25 about his findings after sampling the home of one family with multiple SARS-CoV-2 infections.
He could not find "any live virus on any surface," which raises more questions about the virus. He said the virus was not found on frequently used objects, such as doorknobs, or on animal fur. "We know it's not a smear infection that is transmitted by touching objects, but that close dancing and exuberant celebrations have led to infections," Streeck said.
Infectious disease specialist Dr. Amesh Adalja from Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security spoke with a reporter from Yahoo Life, saying:26
“Based on the epidemiology, we know that the main way this virus is infecting people is from direct contact with other infected people. Contaminated surfaces play some role, but it’s likely much smaller. This is a respiratory virus, and respiratory viruses largely spread through breathing in infected respiratory droplets.”
Bill Gates — who illegally invests in the industries he gives charitable donations to and promotes a global public health agenda that benefits the companies he’s invested in — claims life cannot go back to normal until we can vaccinate the global population against COVID-19.1,2
And, according to The Rockefeller Foundation’s white paper,3 “National COVID-19 Testing Action Plan,” privacy concerns “must be set aside” so that the infection status of every individual can be accessed and validated before permission is given to entering schools, office buildings, places of work, airports, concert and sport venues and more.
We’re currently being told that we “must” forgo our civil liberties because we might spread a virus to a potentially vulnerable individual. To prevent deaths from occurring by people moving about freely, we’re told we have to stop living.
Yet every single flu season throughout history, people have moved about, spreading the infection around and facilitating the acquisition of natural herd immunity. Undoubtedly, most people who have ever left their house with a cold, stomach bug or other influenza at any point in the past, have unwittingly spread the infection to others, some of which may have ended up with a serious case of illness and some of which may ultimately have died from it.
There is simply no way to prevent such a chain of events in perpetuity. As noted by Attorney General William Barr in an April 21, 2020, interview with Hugh Hewitt,4 “impingements on liberty” were adopted “for the limited purpose of slowing down the spread, that is bending the curve. We didn’t adopt them as the comprehensive way of dealing with this disease.”
Indeed, giving up our civil liberties in an effort to prevent all future deaths from infectious disease is profoundly misguided, and will not work in the long run.
Still, people around the world are being effectively manipulated and brainwashed with carefully honed propaganda derived from massive behavioral surveillance, to put life on hold until there’s a vaccine. Of course, by then, vaccination will likely become mandatory for anyone who wants to return to regular life.
To pull off this global plan of “disease surveillance” (which will eventually be tied to digital finance and identification schemes that are also in the works), those advocating for a “new normal” need a vaccine, and they need it fast, while fears are still dominating the news.
Vaccine Makers Race to Create COVID-19 Vaccine
Safety testing for vaccines typically leaves much to be desired to begin with, but when it comes to fast-tracked pandemic vaccines, safety testing is accelerated and becomes even more inadequate. The COVID-19 vaccine may in fact be the most fast-tracked vaccine ever created in history, which necessitates the elimination of required safety testing steps, such as animal testing.5,6
May 5, 2020, The New York Times reported7 that Pfizer, in collaboration with BioNTech, was scheduled to begin human trials of a COVID-19 vaccine on May 11, 2020 in the U.S. If successful, the vaccine could be released under an FDA-approved Emergency Use Authorization (EUA)8 as early as September 2020 — an unheard-of timeframe for any vaccine development.
Other vaccine makers have announced vaccine candidates will be ready in September as well9 — far sooner than the original 18 months to two years that Gates, Fauci and other authorities initially predicted at the beginning of this pandemic.
April 23, 2020, a dozen healthy German volunteers, aged 18 to 55, received Pfizer’s vaccine candidate, known only as BNT162.10 That trial is expected to eventually be expanded to 200.
Why the elderly, who are the most vulnerable to COVID-19 complications, would be excluded is a question worth asking — especially in light of the paradoxical immune enhancement that coronavirus vaccines are known for. (l’ll cover that in a later section.)
The U.S. trial will include 360 healthy volunteers in the first stage, and as many as 8,000 in the second stage. Volunteers will be divided into four groups, each group receiving one of four variations of the vaccine. The trial is being conducted at New York University’s Grossman School of Medicine, the University of Maryland School of Medicine, the University of Rochester Medical Center and the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center.
“As soon as pharmaceutical companies can show evidence that a vaccine is effective and has produced no serious harms, they can apply for this kind of approval, which allows doctors to administer the vaccine to those most in need.
But more detailed study results may still be needed to persuade federal regulators to approve a candidate for the broader public,” The New York Times reports.11
COVID-19 Vaccine Will Be Unlike Any Other
Like Moderna and several other competitors, the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine is using messenger RNA (mRNA) rather than live or attenuated (inactivated) viruses grown in animal cells. Among the vaccine candidates are ones containing uridine-containing mRNA (uRNA), nucleoside-modified mRNA (modRNA) and self-amplifying mRNA (saRNA).12 As explained by The New York Times:13
“… messenger RNA … carries the instructions for cells to make proteins. By injecting a specially designed messenger RNA into the body, the vaccine could potentially tell cells how to make the spike protein of the coronavirus without actually making a person sick.
Because the virus typically uses this protein as a key to unlock and take over lung cells, the vaccine could train a healthy immune system to produce antibodies to fight off an infection … But no vaccine made with this technology for other viruses has ever reached the global market.”
So, not only are we dealing with a novel virus, the mechanics of which is still not thoroughly understood (some experts are now saying it appears to be a genetically engineered virus that attacks the blood14 more so than the lungs, for example), they’re also using a novel RNA-based vaccine that has never been used before.
What could possibly go wrong? In my view — just about everything. It could turn into a global catastrophe the likes of which we’ve never experienced before.
Fast-Tracked Vaccine Could Have Catastrophic Consequences
In my recent interview above with Robert Kennedy Jr., he summarized the history of coronavirus vaccine development, which began after three SARS epidemics had broken out, starting in early 2002. Two of those three epidemics were lab-created organisms. Chinese, Americans and Europeans all started working on a coronavirus vaccine and around 2012, there were some 30 promising candidates.
As explained by Kennedy, the four best vaccine candidates were then given to ferrets, which are the closest analogue to human lung infections. Kennedy explained what happened next:
“The ferrets had an extraordinarily good antibody response, and that is the metric by which FDA licenses vaccines … They do a serological response [test to] see ‘Did you develop in your blood antibodies to that target virus?’ The ferrets developed very strong antibodies, so they thought, ‘We hit the jackpot.’ All four of these vaccines ... worked like a charm.
Then something terrible happened. Those ferrets were then exposed to the wild virus, and they all died. [They developed] inflammation in all their organs, their lungs stopped functioning and they died …
The same thing had happened in the 1960s when they tried to develop an RSV vaccine, which is an upper respiratory illness very similar to coronavirus.
At the time, they did not test it on animals. They went right to human testing. They tested it on I think about 35 children, and the same thing happened. The children developed a champion antibody response — robust, durable.
It looked perfect [but when] the children were exposed to the wild virus, they all became sick. Two of them died. They abandoned the vaccine. It was a big embarrassment to FDA and NIH.”
The Cause Behind Paradoxical Immune Enhancement
What could possibly account for this perplexing outcome? Why did the ferrets die when exposed to the wild virus even though they had a robust antibody response to the vaccine?
As explained by Kennedy, after looking into the matter further, researchers in 2012 discovered that coronaviruses produce not just one but two different types of antibodies — neutralizing antibodies15 that fight the infection, and binding antibodies16 (also known as nonneutralizing antibodies) that cannot prevent viral infection.
Incapable of preventing viral infection, binding antibodies can instead trigger a “paradoxical immune response,” or “paradoxical immune enhancement.” “What that means is that it looks good until you get the disease, and then it makes the disease much, much worse,” Kennedy said, adding:
“Coronavirus vaccines can be very dangerous, and that's why even our enemies, people who hate you and me — Peter Hotez, Paul Offit, Ian Lipkin — are all saying, ‘You got to be really, really careful with this vaccine.’"
Additionally, in my interview with Dr. Meryl Nass that will run May 24, 2020, she notes that Ralph Barric from the University of North Carolina — who collaborated extensively with Shi Zhengli from the Wuhan Institute of Virology, and who is widely noted as one, if not the leading coronavirus virologist in the world — predicted that the vaccine would be an abysmal failure in the elderly who need it the most.
Many of the COVID-19 vaccines currently in the running are using mRNA to instruct your cells to make the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein (S protein), in other words, the glycoprotein that attaches to the ACE2 receptor of the cell. This is the first stage of the two-stage process viruses use to gain entry into cells.
The idea is that by creating the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein, your immune system will commence production of antibodies, without making you sick in the process. But are they in fact checking which of the two types of antibodies this process will produce?
Will injecting mRNA trigger the production of neutralizing antibodies or will it produce binding/nonneutralizing antibodies? Simply checking for antibody response may not suffice.
Vaccine Propagandist Expressed Concerns
Fast-tracking vaccine development has considerable risks. The best case scenario (highly unlikely) is that it will simply be ineffective (which is typically the case for the seasonal influenza vaccine), or, far more likely, it will cause serious side effects (as was the case with the fast-tracked 1976-1977 and 2009-2010 H1N1 swine flu vaccine), or it just might worsen infection rather than prevent it, as has been the case with previous coronavirus vaccines. As reported by Reuters:17
“Studies have suggested that coronavirus vaccines carry the risk of what is known as vaccine enhancement, where instead of protecting against infection, the vaccine can actually make the disease worse when a vaccinated person is infected with the virus.
The mechanism that causes that risk is not fully understood and is one of the stumbling blocks that has prevented the successful development of a coronavirus vaccine …
‘I understand the importance of accelerating timelines for vaccines in general, but from everything I know, this is not the vaccine to be doing it with,’ Dr. Peter Hotez, dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine, told Reuters.”
Coming from a staunch pro-mandatory vaccination propagandist like Hotez, that’s really saying something. Needless to say, COVID-19 vaccine makers will be indemnified from financial liability no matter how many casualties a fast-tracked vaccine might cause.
Fast-Tracked Swine Flu Vaccine Caused Genetic Alterations
The H1N1 swine flu of 2009 was the most recent pandemic of note, and it’s well worth remembering what happened with the European fast-tracked vaccine. Europe accelerated its approval process, allowing manufacturers to skip large-scale human trials18 — a decision that turned out to have tragic consequences19 for an untold number of children and teens across Europe.
Over the next few years, the ASO3-adjuvanted swine flu vaccine Pandemrix (used in Europe but not in the U.S. during 2009-2010) was causally linked20 to childhood narcolepsy, which abruptly skyrocketed in several countries.21,22
Children and teens in Finland,23 the UK24 and Sweden25 were among the hardest hit. Further analyses discerned a rise in narcolepsy among adults who received the vaccine as well, although the link wasn’t as obvious as that in children and adolescents.26
A 2019 study27 reported finding a “novel association between Pandemrix-associated narcolepsy and the non-coding RNA gene GDNF-AS1” — a gene thought to regulate the production of glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor or GDNF, a protein that plays an important role in neuronal survival.
They also confirmed a strong association between vaccine-induced narcolepsy and a certain haplotype, suggesting “variation in genes related to immunity and neuronal survival may interact to increase the susceptibility to Pandemrix-induced narcolepsy in certain individuals.”
In addition to that, there’s the research28 showing that the H1N1 swine flu vaccine was one of five inactivated vaccines that increased overall mortality, especially among girls.
The Pandemrix debacle should be instructive. No one anticipated a flu vaccine to have genetic consequences, yet it did. Now they’re proposing injecting mRNA to make every single cell in your body produce the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein. How can we possibly think that the long-term ramifications of this will be clear by September?
Safer Vaccines Can Be Made
In my recent interview with Judy Mikovits, Ph.D. is a cellular and molecular biologist, she points out there’s a way to produce a much safer vaccine against COVID-19. Of course, her proposal will never see the light of day or ever be considered.
She proposes a novel vaccine for viruses like SARS-CoV-2 that involves alpha interferon, small amounts of the virus and peptide T, which would block the interaction of the virus and keep your T cells from getting infected.
Interferon Type 129,30,31 is a type of beneficial cytokine released by your body as one of its first line of defense against viral infections. In a nutshell, it interferes with viral replication. It’s also been shown to suppress certain types of tumors. As part of your immune system, it digests viral DNA and viral proteins in infected cells while simultaneously protecting noninfected neighboring cells.
Interferon alpha and beta also help regulate your immune response. As noted in a 2018 paper32 on the dual nature of Type 1 and Type 2 interferons, “both antiviral and immunomodulatory functions are critical during virus infection to not only limit virus replication and initiate an appropriate antiviral immune response, but to also negatively regulate this response to minimize tissue damage.”
Unlike conventional vaccines, which are mostly injected, this would be oral and only stimulate antibody humoral responses. Her version would also cause innate cellular immunity from the T cells. As Mikovits explained in my recent interview with her, featured in “Could Retroviruses Play a Role in COVID-19?”:
“I was part of the team that first used the immune therapy, a purified Type 1 interferon alpha, as a curative therapy for a leukemia. That research has proceeded for decades, [yet] the Food and Drug Administration said, ‘You can't use that in preventing coronaviruses from jumping from animals [to humans].’
[Type 1 interferon] is a simple food. It's a simple spray. We have it on the shelf now, made by Merck, [yet] Merck discontinued its use. Why would you do that if that was the frontline … prevention? Interferon alpha is your body's own best antiviral against coronaviruses and retroviruses.”
Often used for garnishing meals and improving flavor, parsley (Petroselinum crispum) is a fragrant green herb with a refreshing taste. Don't let its simple appearance fool you, though, as it's a powerhouse of various vitamins and minerals.1,2
There are many ways to consume parsley, as it can be a colorful addition to salads, soups, sauces and sandwiches. But did you know that you can brew parsley into a soothing and therapeutic cup of tea as well? Read on to learn more about parsley tea, its benefits to your well-being and how you can brew a fresh cup on your own.
Parsley tea is an herbal infusion made from the fresh or dried leaves of the parsley plant.3 The leaves have a naturally bright, bitter taste,4 which is why sometimes a sweetener is added. Making the tea is quite easy, as there are parsley teabags available at your local supermarket. However, given the affordable price of fresh parsley, it may be a better idea to make your own tea at home.5
Steeping parsley in hot water infuses its compounds into the beverage. This allows you to obtain traces of its plant polyphenols and the following nutrients with every sip of parsley tea:6
The polyphenols, vitamins and minerals in parsley tea may provide various pharmacological activities, including diuretic, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and nephroprotective properties, among others.7 All of these nutrients work together to help:
1. Detoxify the body — Because of its natural diuretic property, parsley leaves may help flush out toxins from your body through your urine.8
2. Lower the risk for cancer — Apigenin, one of the flavonoids obtained from parsley tea, has been shown to provide chemoprotective properties.
According to a study published in the Journal of Cancer Prevention, the mechanisms by which apigenin help lower the risk for cancer involve stimulating cancer cell autophagy and apoptosis, regulating cellular response to oxidative stress and DNA damage, suppressing inflammation and angiogenesis, and retarding cancer cell proliferation.9
3. Promote immune health — Parsley tea provides you with vitamin C, which may help improve your immune defenses by supporting cellular immune function, stimulating oxidant-scavenging activity and promoting epithelial barrier function against pathogens.10 Parsley tea also increases your levels of vitamin A, which was dubbed as "the anti-inflammation vitamin" in a 1928 study due to its critical role in enhancing immune function.11
4. Relieve bloating — Parsley is traditionally used to help ease symptoms of bloating. Adjusting eating habits, such as slowing down swallowing, may help bloating as well.12
5. Fight against the effects of free radicals — Parsley tea may be a good source of flavonoids, carotenoids, vitamins and minerals that have antioxidant properties to help defend your cells against harmful free radicals.13
6. Lower the risk for kidney stones — A study published in the American Journal of Clinical and Experimental Urology showed that parsley may help increase urine volume, decrease urinary calcium excretion and raise urine acidity, making it a natural antiurolithiasis remedy.14
7. Promote healthy liver function — A study published in the Journal of Intercultural Ethnopharmacology found that the extract of parsley may have hepatoprotective effects due to its antioxidant properties.15
8. Manage blood pressure levels — Parsley may help lower blood pressure levels by releasing more sodium into your urine and stimulating urination. This decreases the amount of fluid flowing through your blood vessels, which in turn reduces the pressure on your vessel walls.16,17
It's easy to make a steaming cup of parsley tea. Simply follow this recipe adapted from Verywell Fit:18
Parsley Tea Recipe
- Place the leaves into your cup or a tea infuser. A French press is also viable if you have one at home.
- Boil enough water for your chosen container.
- Fill the container with boiling water. Steep the leaves for about four minutes, or longer for a stronger flavor.
- Remove the leaves if the tea was prepared in the cup. Add a dash of raw honey or stevia.
You can take your parsley tea up a notch by adding other herbs to it. Here's a refreshing recipe you can try that incorporates mint leaves:
Mint-Infused Parsley Tea Recipe
- 1/2 cup fresh parsley leaves
- 2 cups of water
- Handful of mint leaves
- Lemon slices
- Fill a pot with water and bring it to a boil.
- Put the parsley and mint leaves in a teapot and pour hot water over them.
- Let the leaves steep for five minutes. You can either strain them or leave them in.
- Pour the tea into the cups, add lemon slices and serve.
(Recipe adapted from A Dash of Lemon19)
Although parsley tea is generally a healthy beverage, you still should consume it in moderation. Drinking large amounts of parsley tea may cause a severe allergic reaction. In a case study published in 2014, a woman developed near-fatal anaphylaxis because she was consuming a cup of parsley every day.20
To stay on the safe side, if you don't know whether you're allergic to parsley, consult with a doctor before adding it to your regular diet.
If you prefer making parsley tea from scratch instead of buying ready-to-steep teabags from the supermarket, choose plants that look fresh and crisp, with vibrant green leaves. Avoid parsley that has yellowed leaves or other signs of decay.21
Make sure the plant you choose is grown organically to lower your risk of exposure to harmful gardening chemicals. Buy parsley from the local farmers market to guarantee it's organic, or better yet, grow parsley at home.
Q: What is parsley tea good for?
A: Parsley tea contains health-promoting polyphenols and nutrients such as apigenin, carotenoids, vitamins A, C and K, folate, magnesium and iron, to name a few.22 It also has numerous pharmacological activities, including antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, diuretic and nephroprotective properties.23
Some of its possible benefits include helping reduce the risk for cancer,24 promoting immune health,25 relieving bloating26 and inhibiting the formation of kidney stones.27
Q: How much parsley tea is safe to drink daily?
A: You can safely drink a cup of parsley tea per day, though you should consult with your doctor to learn if you have any allergies before trying it. Consuming too much parsley may lead to anemia or liver or kidney problems.28
Q: Where can you buy parsley tea?
A: Parsley tea is available in health food stores. You also can make your own using fresh parsley leaves.
Q: Is parsley tea good for your skin?
A: Yes. Parsley may help promote healthy skin, thanks to its vitamin A content, which is essential for skin health.29
Q: Is parsley tea good for your liver?
A: Yes. The extract of parsley present in this beverage has been shown to provide hepatoprotective properties.30
Q: Is parsley tea good for lowering blood pressure?
A: A study showed that parsley has diuretic properties, which may aid in the reduction of blood pressure levels.31