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Research difficulties

Dr. John Campbell • May 29, 2020

Levels of evidence (Dr. Sackett)  https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/arti…

I = Meta analyses or RCT with clear cut results

II = Small RCT with unclear results

III = Cohort or case control study

IV = Historical cohort of case-control studies

V = Case series studies with no controls Practice recommendations

A = Strong recommendation Level I evidence or consistent findings

B = Recommendation Level II, III or IV but consistent

C = Opinion Evidence but inconsistent

D = Opinion Level V evidence or no systematic empirical evidence

Research on covid-19 is suffering “imperfect incentives at every stage” (28th May) https://www.bmj.com/content/369/bmj.m…

Cite bait

Scientists and journalists Journalists are reporting on more preprint studies that have not been peer reviewed and vary in quality

What we are seeing is worrying signs of a compromise in quality

There is an urgent need for data and knowledge, but false information is worse than no information

2181 publications 304 (14%) primary research papers, 218 (72%) of primary papers observational 82 (27%) of which peer reviewed

Therefore 3.7% of all publications peer reviewed primary research

Greater transparency needed

May 29, 2020 Posted by | Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular, Video | | Leave a comment

J’accuse: Pinning down responsibility for Belgium’s dismal record of Covid-19 mortality

By Gilbert Doctorow | May 28, 2020

For a number of weeks in a row as coronavirus infections, hospitalizations and deaths spiraled upwards exponentially, the broad population in Belgium and many other European countries came out at specified times in the evening to collectively celebrate the heroism of their medical cadres on the front lines of the pandemic. For a while I joined in, but then as it became clear that Belgium has the world’s highest number of deaths per capita in the world, and that the explanations for this given by the authorities are utterly unconvincing, my feelings towards our medical profession changed from admiration to pity for their risking their lives only to produce miserable results. Clearly the foot soldiers had been let down by their generals.

As of today, more than 9,500 patients have died in this country of 11.5 million, half in hospital and half in old age and care homes. To put this in proper perspective, in the United States, where the chaotic response of the federal government under President Trump has been exposed to scathing ridicule both domestically and by observers abroad, today was marked with solemnity as the country crossed the threshold of 100,000 Covid -19 deaths. If the official Belgian mortality rate per million were to be projected onto the United States, which is 28 times more populous, we should be marking 270,000 deaths there today.  Of course, given the unruly de-confinement now going in many U.S. states with the active encouragement of the White House, the numbers there may reach and exceed that level in the coming weeks. But they also may not.

If we use another yardstick which has been promoted by the Financial Times, namely the total excess deaths in a given country in 2020 during the months of the pandemic compared to the normal mortality in the same country in the same period over the past several years, Belgium once again comes out at the top of the list of shame, just behind the UK and Italy.

Most of the Covid-19 deaths in Belgium could have been spared had the right decisions been taken at the outset. And I do not mean earlier imposition of confinement. I will explain myself below. Many other unnecessary deaths have continued even up to the present day because of critical errors that are not being corrected due to pure incompetence, aided and abetted by a dysfunctional political system of power sharing, placing political ideology above pragmatism, and being penny wise and pound foolish in the spending to combat the epidemic. In this regard, it is relevant to note that the daily death toll in Belgium this past week has persistently exceeded that in neighboring France, a country with 5 times the population.

In this brief essay, I will ask some of the tough questions that our lame print media seem unable or unwilling to do during the thrice weekly press conferences held by officials of the federal health ministry.

As recently as a few days ago I hesitated to come out with accusations since I am not a health professional and can base my doubts only on the inconsistencies I have remarked between how the epidemic has been handled in other countries including South Korea and Russia where deaths per million are vastly lower, and what is being done and said from high offices in Belgium. However, the very sharp criticism reported on 26 May in the middle-of-the-road French language newspaper La Libre Belgique directed against the Sciensano institute at the center of the Government’s Covid 19 management has brought starkly into the open some of the weaknesses we in lay society had observed among ourselves in kitchen talk. A breach in the Government’s defenses of its policies has opened up and it is high time to march through.

* * * *

La Libre Belgique assigned to the article mentioned above a title sure to attract the attention it merits: “Coronavirus: the Royal Academies castigate the ‘opaque decisions of Sciensano’ which ‘put our country in danger.’” The Royal Academy of Medicine and the Royal Academy of Sciences, Letters and Fine Arts denounce in particular the monopoly of power exercised by the Scientific Institute of Public Health (Sciensano) with respect to management of the health crisis and the way their own advice has not been taken into account. They call for ‘rethinking the strategy for developing the Belgian medical plan.’ They note that the oncoming pandemic provoked panic in the country. Decisions were taken precipitously and without any well thought out plan despite the fact that the viral outbreak had occurred in China already in December. They insist that Belgium must learn from its errors if it is to face up to the likely second wave of viral infections ahead.

The one specific charge the Royal Academies raise is over the flip-flop on public policy with respect to wearing masks. We are told that “They point their finger at the ‘denial of the interest in the population wearing masks to cover up the shortage [of masks] and a lack of foresight, as well as the ‘restrictions on use of diagnostic tests’ for the asymptomatic or pre-symptomatic cases of persons having been in contact with a contaminated person.’”

The net result of the démarche is the following: “The two Academies ask Sciensano to collaborate with them in order to ensure transparency, independence and coherence of the decisions taken. They emphasize that they are composed of ‘internationally recognized experts in numerous disciplines concerned by the problem at hand.’”

Finally we are told that the two Academies point to the mistrust which the population is showing with regard to the management of the health crisis, saying ‘’It is urgent that we reestablish confidence and credibility between the decision-making authorities and civil society.”

* * * *

For little Belgium, the open conflict among elites that we see in the article I have summarized above is quite remarkable. We read that the public has lost trust in the authorities, and we read that internationally recognized experts have been sidelined.

Neither phenomenon is particularly unusual in this country where the flip side of the advanced democratic solutions for holding the kingdom together, given the rivalries of the French-speaking and Dutch-speaking regions, is power sharing. This power sharing broadly equates to institutionalized corruption and incompetence. Ministers receive their portfolios by back-room deals among the parties forming the governing coalition of the day. The coronavirus is the sharp end that has driven these abuses out into the open for public scrutiny, particularly as regards the reviled minister of public health Maggie de Bock.

The remarks about government lies about the usefulness of masks when there were none for the hospitals let alone for the general public hit at the most talked about and grating abuses of the Minister of Health. Moreover, she had a year earlier overseen the destruction of millions of masks purchased for the feared ‘bird flu’ H5N1 ten years ago, thereby leaving the country totally exposed in case of some new viral epidemic. On these grounds alone, the Belgian doctors’ association had called for her to be stripped of her license to practice medicine. That may not seem more than a tap on the wrist, but the notion of hauling her into court for dereliction of duty was too improbable of success to be contemplated.

In the meantime, two months into the pandemic, Belgium has stocked up on masks and latex gloves. In my own commune of Ixelles, one of the boroughs in central Brussels, we received a knock on the door a couple of weeks ago, from a communal official delivering for me and my wife individually packaged double layer cloth masks. A very nice gesture, if somewhat late. In Brussels, it is now mandatory to wear masks on public transit and in stores. However, the damage to public trust from the prevarication of the minister was substantial.

What we see in the allegations of the two Academies is that the rot goes much further than one incompetent minister. The Institute advising the ministry, Sciensano, is itself a concoction of political interests rather than a serious center of expertise. It serves two very different administrations: Public Health and Agriculture. Wikipedia tells us that “its core business is scientific research in the fields of public health, animal health and food safety.” The same source spells out the ideology which Sciensanto promotes: “that the areas of human health, animal health and the environment are inherently connected with each other.” Given this ‘green agenda,’ is it any wonder that early on in the pandemic we heard that the high levels of infection and mortality in Belgium might be explained by the high levels of industrial pollution in its cities. I would suggest that this irrelevancy blinded officials to the mortal threat posed by a vicious and uniquely contagious viral infection, full stop.

* * * *

There is no question but that lockdown everywhere has been effective in “flattening the curve” and bringing the daily admissions into hospital, and more particularly into Intensive Care Units, down to manageable levels and so avoiding the kind of pandemonium that we all saw to our horror hit Lombardy in early March.

It is also beyond dispute that imposition of draconian lockdown rules in democratic societies could come only after the existential threat to society was made plain by the kind of disaster that hit Italy. During an interview with the BBC, Italian Prime Minister Conte said as much to justify his foot-dragging in the early days of the epidemic: “Had I imposed lockdown then, all the political classes would have said I was crazy.”

In this respect, we have to give credit to the government of Belgium, and to its Acting Prime Minister Sophie Wilmès for its breaking the political logjam and imposing lockdown in time to avoid the tragedy of Northern Italy. However, it also has to be said that this very rich country did not do what could have changed the game in favor of both saving lives and saving the economy: it did not reach into its wallet to do what China had done so impressively, namely to urgently construct one or more large scale dedicated hospitals to isolate and treat Covid 19 patients. Removing the flow of patients from the normal hospital infrastructure could have maintained essential services to the public., so important to dialysis patients, oncology patients undergoing chemotherapy, those suffering from cardio-vascular events, and the like. Equally importantly, the concentration of fire power in a very few facilities would have helped to ensure proper training and availability of proper protective equipment for those dealing with the Covid-19 patients.  Instead, Belgium chose the cheap and dirty solution, distributing the daily influx of Covid-19 patients among more than 100 hospitals around the country, most of which were very poorly prepared for the daunting challenges ahead.

The second, very important strategic failure of the Belgian health profession was to advise all those who were reporting Covid-19 symptoms to remain at home as long as possible and merely consult with their ‘family physicians’ (which a great many people do not have) by remote. The net result of this practice is that Belgian patients came to hospital by ambulance in advanced and often untreatable condition. Yes, they may have been placed on respirators in ICU’s. Indeed, Belgium never fell short of respirators. We can have no doubt that failure by the health authorities to inform us about the fatality rate of those placed on respirators is simply that the figures are too shocking.

So what do other countries that have been more successful both in patient outcomes and in damage to the economy show us?  First, that those exhibiting or complaining of Covid-19 symptoms should be isolated by the authorities, not by self-quarantine, and that they should be observed closely and given drugs now known to inhibit the reproduction of the virus, among which we find the Gilead substance remdesivir. This is what is being done with great effect in South Korea. It is what is being done in Russia, where another virus-inhibitor discovered in China during the Wuhan treatments is now undergoing massive production in Moscow for widespread distribution to treat the virus. Russian authorities claim that the Chinese pills shorten the Covid-19 recovery time and lessen the damage from the infection by a factor of two compared to remdesivir.

As we all know, Western media have focused on the high incidence of Covid-19 infections in Russia, said to be third in the world after the United States and China, and the very low mortality, with death toll less than 4,000 at last count. The first fact results directly from the massive testing going on in Russia, far greater than in any other country now experiencing this plague.

The reasons for the relative benign outcomes in Russia are simple if you make an effort to understand what is being done. First, the Russians have copied directly the Chinese approach to urgent construction of dedicated Covid-19 field and permanent hospitals. These are state of the art facilities with $60,000 allocated for each bed. Second, the Russians followed the draconian lockdown on the most vulnerable populations, namely those over age 65.  In Russia, seniors are directed, not merely advised to stay at home. No walking the dog, no visits to pharmacies or food stores. As regards the urban population, volunteers bring food and other essentials directly to the apartments of the seniors. This is precisely what the Chinese were doing in Wuhan for the entire population.

Unfortunately, in Belgium as in most of Western Europe and in the USA, China is today viewed only as the source of the Covid-19 pandemic. Yes, they are paid suppliers of our masks and other protective gear.  But we do not see in them solutions to medical management that are proving very effective in Russia and which have parallel, home developed solutions elsewhere in Asia.

Despite all the talk of globalization, the reality here in Belgium with respect to handling the Covid-19 pandemic has been insular and, quite plainly, ignorant. Let us hope that now, when the first wave of the pandemic is receding, we will stop rallying around the interim government and start exercising our minds by challenging the authorities on the points above and many further points which I am sure our medical experts in the Academies are aware of.

©Gilbert Doctorow,  2020

May 28, 2020 Posted by | Deception, Economics | , | Leave a comment

Lavrov blasts leaders who put selfish interests ahead of saving lives during pandemic

RT | May 28, 2020

The elites who rule the West have put selfish or ideological goals first when choosing their response to the Covid-19 pandemic, Russia’s foreign minister has said in a scathing op-ed.

The ongoing health crisis has exposed the incompetence and failure to adapt that powerful people in the West suffer from. Those people are stuck in the kind of thinking that simply does not work in the globalized world, Sergey Lavrov wrote in a piece published by the Chinese outlet Global Times on Thursday.

The coronavirus came as “an instruction for humility,” said Lavrov, as it posed a threat to all people and nations regardless of their location, wealth, or political preferences. It was a problem that nobody could “sit out in a safe haven, behind moats and walls” or “solve at the expense of others.”

Faced with this challenge, some nations have failed to live up to the values they preach, exposing a “deficiency of humanism,” an “incurable condition” that the ruling elites in those countries suffer from, Lavrov argued. Instead of promoting cooperation, they chose “predatory approaches” and “played the game of Monopoly” in pursuit of selfish goals and settling scores with their “geopolitical opponents.”

“Those who are used to declaring – or declaiming – their moral superiority and rich democratic traditions, are shedding basic properties and ethical inhibitions and acting according to the law of the jungle.”

In recent months, the countries’ responses to the crisis have been unable to avoid taking on political connotations. Washington has continued its attempts to blame China for starting the pandemic and has made accusations against the World Health Organization. It also refused to lift sanctions from countries like Iran and Venezuela for the duration of the crisis.

At the same time, in Europe, Italy faced criticism for accepting humanitarian aid from Russia and China. Behavior like this, Lavrov noted, shows that “the much-lauded solidarity of the Euroatlantic brand is valued more than the lives and health of tens of thousands of common citizens.”

Ironically, Lavrov said, the ultra-liberal economic model that the West peddles to the rest of the world has proven to be a failure when dealing with the pandemic. Nations with “working mobilization mechanisms, clearly defined sovereign interests and original value systems” have dealt with it in more robust ways.

“The elites who rule the West have put selfish or ideological goals first when choosing their response to the Covid-19 pandemic,” Russia’s foreign minister said.

Lavrov suggested that people throughout the world, and especially in Europe, need to learn a lesson from this pandemic. He added that it was time for Europeans to stop looking “to other parts of the world” for “existential guidance” and military protection, which “denies the European Union a chance to establish itself as an independent center of influence in the multipolar world.”

May 28, 2020 Posted by | Aletho News | , , | 2 Comments

How the U.S. response to COVID-19 failed and caused thousands of deaths

CGTN | May 25, 2020

There have been over 1.6 million #coronavirus cases and nearly 100,000 deaths in the U.S. While many countries are gradually recovering, no turning point for the pandemic in America is on the sight.

Lots of people are shocked at how America, the largest economy in the world, and a great country in the eyes of many, has got to this point. So to find out what led to this mess, let’s back up a little and take a look at the timeline.

May 25, 2020 Posted by | Aletho News | , | 1 Comment

China, Russia can initiate probe of US bio-labs

Washington urged to be transparent with bio-weapons program

Drills for Radiological, Biological and Chemical Defence Troops

By Yang Sheng – Global Times – 2020/5/14

In order to hide the fact that the US is researching on biological weapons, the US will not respond to an international query on its bio-labs, Chinese military experts said, adding that China and Russia could initiate an investigation of bio-labs worldwide at the UN to pressure the US.

The US can’t just claim all reasonable inquiries to its bio-labs as “conspiracy theories,” and when US politicians keep accusing China’s lab in Wuhan as the origin of COVID-19 without providing any evidence, they should respond to the questions on US bio-labs, including the US Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases at Fort Detrick, analysts said.

China and Russia can initiate an international investigation of all P3 and P4 labs worldwide, including the ones run by the US, at the UN Security Council, and US antiwar groups and media can also pressure Washington to be transparent on the question of its bio-labs, Chinese analysts suggested.

Washington’s unwillingness to support the idea of a protocol to the Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production and Stockpiling of Bacteriological (Biological) and Toxin Weapons in order to create a verification mechanism makes one wonder what goals the US seeks to achieve through its overseas bio-labs, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov told reporters on Wednesday, TASS reported.

Lavrov said at a news conference following an online meeting of foreign ministers of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) on Wednesday that “These [US] laboratories are densely formed along the perimeter of the borders of the Russian Federation, and, accordingly, next to the borders of the People’s Republic of China,” the Xinhua News Agency reported.

Reasonable concerns

Song Zhongping, a military expert and TV commentator, told the Global Times on Thursday that “Russia has repeatedly voiced its concerns to the US about the labs in its neighbors like Ukraine and Georgia, but the US has ignored these concerns. The reason is simple – the US is hiding its bio-weapons program.”

The US has had a very advanced capability to develop chemical and biological weapons since the Cold War, and it had used them in Vietnam, like Agent Orange, which caused serious casualties and harm to Vietnamese civilians and even US soldiers, so it is reasonable for other countries to worry what the US is doing in those overseas bio-labs, said a military expert at a Beijing-based military academy who requested anonymity.

Jin Canrong, associate dean of School of International Studies, Renmin University in Beijing, said the questions that China and Russia raised about US labs are reasonable queries, which are totally different from the groundless accusations and conspiracy theories about the origin of COVID-19 made by some US congressmen and politicians. The US accusations were dismissed by US scientists, including Dr. Anthony Fauci, and intelligence agencies.

“The US must be transparent and respond to international concerns over its bio-labs,” Jin noted.

US self-isolation

In response to US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s previous groundless accusation of the Wuhan lab, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said at a press conference on May 8 that “According to open records we have access to, China has only two P4 labs, the highest bio-safety level lab, while the US has 13 that are either in operation, under expansion or in planning, according to a February report by the Federation of American Scientists.”

“The US also has 1,495 P3 labs, not including many other labs it built in territories of the former Soviet Union, like in Ukraine and Kazakhstan, and in many other places around the world… the US has been the only country that has blocked the resumption of negotiations on a verification protocol to the Biological Weapons Convention,” she remarked.

Song said “biological weapons research needs to be carried out in the environment and the people that the weapons might be used for. So, Russia and China, as the major strategic competitors of the US, are the targets, and that’s why the US built these labs in countries neighboring its two major rivals.”

“Additionally, building bio-labs overseas can avoid (impact on US territory) in a potential leak accident, and to avoid the legal problems and pressure from US media and antiwar groups,” Song noted.

Song said “if the US wants to launch an international investigation into Wuhan P4 lab, China and Russia can also initiate an investigation at the UN Security Council on all labs capable of researching bio-weapons. Not surprisingly, the US will refuse as it knows it is the one who is really developing bio-weapons.”

If China and Russia, the two influential UN Security Council permanent members, propose the investigation at the UN of all P4 and P3 labs worldwide, most member states will vote for it except the US, and this will embarrass Washington, Chinese observers said.

The Russian foreign minister said at the conference that “For almost 20 years, Russia and most other countries, including China, have been calling for a protocol on the convention that would establish a mechanism to verify and check states’ commitment not to create biological weapons.”

“The US stands almost alone against this initiative. Tensions around the issue have escalated and Washington’s unwillingness to ensure transparency of its military biological activities in various parts of the world raises questions about what is really going on there and what the actual goals are,” The Russian Foreign Minister pointed out.

Lavrov said that the Shanghai Cooperation Organization is preparing an action plan to ensure sanitary and epidemiological safety – specifically bio-safety – with a summit to be held this year in St. Petersburg.

Song noted that “apart from putting pressure on the US, US civilian antiwar organizations and media can also contribute to pressuring Washington to be transparent on its bio-labs.”

May 24, 2020 Posted by | Militarism, Timeless or most popular | , , , | 1 Comment

Dr Shelton Reports on Vitamin D, Parts 1 and 2

Dr. John Campbell | May 21, 2020

Thank you very much Matt, for you excellent insights and knowledge.

Somalia and Sweden

https://www.bmj.com/content/368/bmj.m…

Elderly Vit D

https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.c…

https://www.change.org/p/1-in-5-in-th…

https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.11…

Vit D

https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.11…

https://www.gov.scot/publications/vit…

Prevalence and correlates of vitamin D deficiency in US adults About 42% of the US population is vitamin D deficient. However, this rate rises to 82% in black people and 70% in Hispanics

Vit D in Indonesia

https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.c…

Vit D

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32252…

Vit D and COVID

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/3…

Vit D deficiency in Ireland

https://tilda.tcd.ie/publications/rep…

Prevalence and correlates of vitamin D deficiency in US adults

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2…

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/…

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/…

Vit D and COVID

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/3…

https://www.researchsquare.com/articl…

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/arti…

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/arti…

May 21, 2020 Posted by | Timeless or most popular, Video | | Leave a comment

Will Washington allow the WHO to investigate its military bio labs?

CGTN | May 19, 2020

In Fort Detrick, Maryland, the U.S. Army has cutting-edge labs researching viruses. In August 2019, Ft. Detrick labs were closed and a number of pneumonia cases, or illness with similarities to pneumonia, occurred in Maryland. What happened when the labs were shut down? What does the U.S. need the labs for? Dr. Qiao tries to connect the dots and get closer to the facts.

May 20, 2020 Posted by | Timeless or most popular, Video | , , | 3 Comments

Interview with a COVID-19 survivor

“It felt like a global tidal wave of human sorrow”

Mickey Z. – World News Trust – May 14, 2020

“At my lowest points, the unsettling realization came to me that given the ferocity and rapidity of change with this virus, a further plunge could mean that I might not survive. Indeed, I felt so close to total suffocation that there seemed little room for further decline. I was determined to fight my way through this, but at the same time, I calmly prepared myself mentally for any eventuality.”

These are the words of my friend, Gregory Elich. They’re not uncommon during this pandemic but I believe his story must be shared within the current climate of uncertainty, misinformation, and division. My goal is not to “set the record straight.” Rather, Greg agreed to this interview because we both saw value in reminding folks of the harsh human realities that exist beyond the headlines, debates, and confusion.

This interview is about one person but his harrowing tale encapsulates much of what’s still going on across the globe. Like Greg, I live alone and I often ponder the logistics of a simple question: What happens if I get sick during the lockdown?

Questions like this highlight what I talked about in a recent article, e.g. the importance of focusing on what is within our control. Therefore, no matter where we stand on the ideological spectrum, we must never forget our shared humanity. Beneath the partisan politics, conflicting theories, and medical contradictions are vulnerable human beings trying to survive — emotionally, financially, and physically. I’m very grateful Greg got through this and has agreed to tell us a little about it.

For the record, I met Greg in 2004 when we were both featured speakers at a large political event in Santa Cruz, California. In the ensuing years, we’ve stayed in touch, wrote blurbs for each other’s books, and developed a strong friendship. I reached out to him via e-mail in early May to do this interview. It went a little something like this:

Mickey Z.: When did you first experience COVID-19 symptoms?

Gregory Elich: I became infected in early March, at a time when it was nearly impossible to get tested. My state, Ohio, followed CDC guidelines to determine where to direct limited testing capacity. Initially, testing was restricted to those who had recently been abroad or to those who had contact with someone who had tested positive for COVID-19. Since virtually no one could get tested, there was practically no way one could have contact with anyone testing positive. Later on, the guidance was adjusted so that testing was limited to healthcare workers and hospitalized people showing symptoms.

Under the circumstances, all that could be done was to test me for normal type A or type B flu. Had either test produced a positive result, it would have ruled out COVID-19. The results of those tests were negative.

MZ: Do you feel confident you would’ve tested positive for COVID-19?

GE: I believe so. This virus is like nothing I’ve ever experienced, and my symptoms closely matched those that have been reported. Naturally, since it was not possible to get tested, I am not included in the statistics. At that time I was reading about so many others who, like me, were repeatedly stymied in their efforts to get tested, regardless of how sick they were. I suspect there are millions of people who were in the same situation.

MZ: It’s interesting that the final count will never truly be known and how this fact will be used by a wide range of groups as evidence for whatever their angle on the pandemic may be. How would you respond to someone who wouldn’t want to list you among the COVID-infected or would doubt such status?

GE: Obviously, I cannot prove it, unless someday I can get tested for antibodies. The reader can judge from the description of my experience whether or not to believe that I was infected with COVID-19. However, my case is irrelevant to the larger argument about the overall impact of the virus. My experience does not alter the fact that a great many people who were seriously ill were unable to get tested. Also, a great many people who died were not counted, since the dead aren’t typically tested for COVID-19. Because the virus interferes with the passage of oxygen to the bloodstream, it can wreak havoc in a variety of organs. In particular, cardiac arrest is not uncommon. COVID-19 can bring death in a variety of ways. It concerns me that policy decisions are being made based on flawed statistics that undercount the true extent of the pandemic in this country.

MZ: Back to you and the illness, how did it manifest for you?

GE: I’ve never been so sick in my life. The experience people have with this virus ranges from being asymptomatic on one end, to life-threatening at the other. I’d say mine fell right in the middle and would be labeled as mild or moderate. The terms are relative, of course, as there was nothing in this ordeal that seemed quite so gentle to me.

The first two days, my only symptom was an intense headache beyond anything I had ever experienced before. On the third day, the dry coughing began. Nonstop coughing fits would come and go in cycles, usually lasting around two to three hours, interspersed with approximately equally long periods where the coughing was sporadic.

On the fourth day, I started feeling short of breath. As the days went on, the dry coughing worsened, as did the shortness of breath. Physically, I felt completely wiped out, and I spent almost all of my time lying down. I had to put an increasing amount of effort into each breath, which was wearing.

From the second week onward, the coughing fits intensified, with the longest one lasting around 35 consecutive hours.

Because I have sleep apnea, I have a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine. On several days, I used my CPAP machine during the daytime so that I wouldn’t have to work as hard to get enough oxygen.

While the CPAP helped to reduce the amount of effort I had to put into breathing, it did not change the fact that I was struggling. It was impossible to take a deep or even a moderate breath. My lungs felt constricted, and the sensation I had was that only the top third of my lungs were taking in air. That probably wasn’t literally the case, but the overall capacity was certainly limited.

MZ: Would the sleep apnea be considered an underlying risk for something like COVID-19?

GE: There is no evidence that sleep apnea is a risk factor. I think it is important to point out, though, that the exhaust from a CPAP mask is spectacularly effective at spreading the virus. So if anyone becomes infected by COVID-19 who uses a CPAP and lives with others, it is essential to sleep in a separate room.

MZ: Did the symptoms fluctuate?

GE: That was the oddest thing about the sickness. My condition was like a roller coaster. I could never tell if I was improving or not. There were two periods where I had three straight days where I seemed to be improving, and I thought I was on my way to recovery. In both cases, within the span of one or two hours, my condition plunged so rapidly and so steeply that it was alarming. I suddenly found myself feeling on the verge of suffocating, and I was gasping for air. All I could do was focus on putting all of my energy into each intake of air, inadequate though it was. The experience is worse than one could imagine, and the thought occurred to me that this would be a horrible way to die. During those periods, the CPAP was of no use, as trying to force air into my lungs when the capacity just wasn’t there only magnified the feeling of suffocation.

I read an article by a doctor who described the fluctuation perfectly. He said that when patients with COVID-19 crash, they crash very quickly and crash very hard. “Each patient is a ticking time-bomb,” he added, “and then — suddenly — they are gasping for air with plummeting oxygen levels and a plummeting blood pressure.”

MZ: Did you consider going to the hospital?

GE: The hospitals were overwhelmed. Respirators and ventilators were in short supply, as were personal protective equipment (PPE) for medical personnel. State officials were urging people not to go to the emergency rooms, lest they infect others. State officials were emphasizing that what little equipment and PPE was available needed to be reserved for those patients in the most severe condition. They advised that infected people should work through their doctors to determine when or if hospitalization was needed. In this situation, one has to consider the broader social need. Had I gone on my own to the hospital, I may have deprived someone who was in greater need, with perhaps lethal consequences for that person.

MZ: How did that play out for you? 

GE: I had two tele-appointments with my doctor. I asked my doctor what sign I should watch for that should trigger me to call about arranging a trip to the hospital. He told me the key to judge by would be if I was sitting in a chair and by standing up, I was so out of breath I couldn’t take another step. That would be the way of determining if I needed a respirator or ventilator. As he pointed out, unless one needs a respirator or ventilator, there is no treatment for the virus that a hospital can offer.

MZ: This must have been hard to accept knowing how volatile your symptoms were.

GE: At my lowest points, the unsettling realization came to me that given the ferocity and rapidity of change with this virus, a further plunge could mean that I might not survive. Indeed, I felt so close to total suffocation that there seemed little room for further decline. There was no way to know what the next hour would bring. I was determined to fight my way through this, but at the same time, I calmly prepared myself mentally for any eventuality.

MZ: Was the doctor able to offer any long-distance help?

GE: At my first tele-appointment, my doctor prescribed an inhaler, codeine cough medicine, and an antibiotic to ward off pneumonia. On the second tele-appointment, I was prescribed more codeine cough medicine and prednisone to reduce inflammation in the lungs. These helped, although the cough medicine proved ineffective during my worse coughing fits.

MZ: Was the medicine delivered to you or were there times you could venture out to the pharmacy? 

GE: I go to a small family-owned drug store, so it was possible to make special arrangements. I certainly did not want to infect anyone there, so I waited until I was in one of my milder cycles. Then I called the pharmacy and arranged a set time to show up at their parking lot. Once there, I remained about 100 feet from the door. At the prearranged time, one of the pharmacists came out and set my bag on the ground. Once she was back inside, I went and picked it up. On my way home, I mailed them a check.

MZ: We’ve all heard about the 14-day incubation period. How long were you feeling ill?

GE: I was sick for around six weeks. It lasted so long that it was difficult for me to imagine being well again. But I did recover, and now I am just so happy to be alive and healthy! 

MZ: It’s so jolting to have a specific face put on something as abstract as a “pandemic.” I hope that’s what we’ve accomplished here, in a way. Before we wrap up, is there anything else you feel compelled to share or say about your experience in particular or this entire crisis, in general?

GE: I am grateful to my cousin and several friends who phoned me and/or e-mailed me on a daily or near-daily basis. Their support substantially raised my spirits and made it much easier to cope.

My experience was nothing compared to that of many others. I can’t imagine what it must be like for those who need to go on a respirator or ventilator.

Amid my sickness, my sleep doctor sent out a mass e-mail, evidently to all of his patients. His message included a photo of his wife and a note that she has been on a ventilator for one week with no sign of improvement. He asked everyone to pray for her. I could imagine the anguish and desperation that drove him to send that e-mail. Looking at his wife’s photo, she was so young. I couldn’t stop crying, thinking of what my sleep doctor was going through emotionally and what his wife was going through physically.

It may sound odd, but during my illness, I felt directly connected to every human being across the world who was struggling with COVID-19. That feeling was most intense when I wasn’t entirely sure what my fate would be, but it continues to this day. The virus has brought so much death, suffering, and struggle. It felt like a global tidal wave of human sorrow. 

As far as my general feeling about the entire crisis, that can best be summed up by simply stating that human life should come first.

MZ: After such an experience — one that could be accurately described as near-death — do you feel any palpable changes in your daily mindset or perspective? 

GE: I’m not sure I’d describe it as a near-death experience, in that I never reached the point where I needed a respirator or ventilator. However, had there been a further decline at a crucial moment, I think I would have been at the edge. 

At any one moment, there was no way I could predict which direction I would go, so it was close enough to set me thinking. 

What surprised me was being able to calmly face the possibility of death. Aside from that, striving for achievement seemed to lose importance, and the experience only reinforced my belief in the importance of treating others with kindness and respect. I would also add that the support I received from my cousin and friends only reemphasized that in life all we really have that matters is each other.

Actually, I am still sorting through my feelings and this may take some time to fully work through.

***

Gregory Elich is a Korea Policy Institute associate and on the Board of Directors of the Jasenovac Research Institute. He is also a member of the Solidarity Committee for Democracy and Peace in Korea. His website is https://gregoryelich.org  Follow him on Twitter at @GregoryElich or @GElich_music

Mickey Z. can be found on Instagram here. He is also the founder of Helping Homeless Women – NYC, offering direct relief to women on the streets of New York City. To help him grow this project, CLICK HERE and make a donation right now. And please spread the word!

May 16, 2020 Posted by | Solidarity and Activism | , | 1 Comment

CNN lies about 68% of Americans waiting for vaccine to return to normal life as lockdown gives MSM new lease on life

By Helen Buyniski  | RT | May 12, 2020

Mainstream media is running wild during the US coronavirus lockdown with the kind of distorted “facts” that would normally be ignored but have developed staying power due to pandemic-induced vulnerabilities in its audience.

More than two-thirds of Americans are determined to hide out in their homes until a Covid-19 vaccine comes along. Or so CNN appeared to claim in a Tuesday headline, declaring “68 percent of Americans say a vaccine is needed before returning to normal life.” Citing a Gallup poll, the piece implied that until a vaccine is rolled out for the pandemic that has upended the lives of people around the world, most Americans are content to shelter in place, working from home (if they’re lucky enough to be working at all) and absorbing reality through the mainstream media.

The actual Gallup poll the article cited said no such thing. “Availability of a vaccine to prevent Covid-19” was merely one item on a list of factors that respondents could rate as “very,” “somewhat,” or “not too important” as conditions for returning to their pre-pandemic routines. Indeed, a poll taken the previous week that specifically asked how many respondents would only return to normal if there was a vaccine found just 12 percent of respondents felt they needed the still-hypothetical jab to resume their lives.

More important than a vaccine that is expected to take over a year to come to market in Gallup’s poll were “mandatory quarantine for anyone testing positive with Covid-19” (“very important” for 80 percent of respondents) and “improved medical therapies to treat Covid-19” (“very important” for 77 percent). Even a “significant reduction” in virus-related deaths (73 percent) outstripped the vaccine. Yet this benchmark was used as the headline by CNN.

Sure, the decision could have been motivated by the network’s heavy support by pharmaceutical companies. Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders called out CNN during a primary debate for taking drug company money in a direct conflict of interest, and vaccine safety advocate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. has claimed 70 percent of ad dollars for news networks come from pharmaceuticals during non-election years.

However, given the abysmal track record of previous efforts to develop a vaccine for other coronaviruses, like SARS, there’s no guarantee a Covid-19 shot will ever come on the market. Instead, it’s more likely CNN’s motive in portraying Americans as willing to hide in their homes for another year in the hope of a pharmaceutical savior that may never come is an opportunistic attempt to prey on the newfound vulnerabilities of a pandemic-panicked population.

Everyone makes mistakes, of course, but CNN and its mainstream media ilk have been making an awful lot of them during the coronavirus pandemic, and they’ve all erred in the direction of presenting the virus as a terrifying killer that threatens all populations who dare peek their heads out of their windows (except for the prescribed hour of clapping, of course). CBS was caught re-using the same footage of an Italian hospital overwhelmed by coronavirus-stricken patients twice to illustrate New York hospitals supposedly buckling under the weight of the epidemic, even after the network was caught the first time and excoriated on social media. A Project Veritas exposé last week implied they hadn’t learned their lesson, claiming the network had allegedly staged a long line of patients waiting for coronavirus testing at a Michigan facility, which CBS was quick to blame. Many outlets continued to predict apocalyptic death numbers for the country long after it was apparent that the early estimates were significantly overblown.

It’s not like there haven’t been plenty of sensational Covid-19 stories in the US, which has long been the epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic. Between U-Haul trucks filled with decomposing bodies parked outside a Brooklyn funeral home and New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s appalling order mandating contagious Covid-19 patients be admitted to nursing homes where they’d – in his own words – infect the tenants “like fire through dry grass,” tales of suffering inflicted by the virus abound. Covid-19 has contributed to over 81,000 deaths as of Tuesday, according to data collected by Johns Hopkins University. But it never seems to be enough – so many of the deaths are in nursing home patients or those with comorbid conditions that the media seems compelled to dig for ever more lurid and shocking narratives.

The Covid-19 lockdowns have given the media establishment something it hasn’t had for years – a captive audience. It isn’t about to let something like that go, even as states begin to loosen restrictions and permit the housebound to return to work. Pre-virus, the media establishment enjoyed near-record low approval ratings, with just 41 percent claiming to trust mainstream outlets in 2019. But in the midst of the uncertainty caused by the virus – which has put over 33 million Americans out of work and disrupted the lives of millions more – the certainty and familiarity those outlets provide has shored up their falling stock. Some 57 percent of respondents to a Pew Research poll conducted last month said cable news was doing an “excellent” or “good” job covering the pandemic, while a whopping 68 percent approved of network television coverage. Given the low ratings they enjoy during business as usual, neither CNN nor any other mainstream outlet is going to risk letting their newly-loyal audience return to reality – not when they can keep them at home waiting for a vaccine for another year. For a media that thrives on fear, the best kind of customer is one who’s glued to the couch, terrified of the virus lurking just outside their door.

Helen Buyniski is an American journalist and political commentator at RT. Follow her on Twitter @velocirapture23

May 13, 2020 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , | 1 Comment

Vitamin D linked to low virus death rate – study

Anglia Ruskin University | May 7, 2020

A new study has found an association between low average levels of vitamin D and high numbers of COVID-19 cases and mortality rates across 20 European countries.

The research, led by Dr Lee Smith of Anglia Ruskin University (ARU) and Mr Petre Cristian Ilie, lead urologist of Queen Elizabeth Hospital King’s Lynn NHS Foundation Trust, is published in the journal Aging Clinical and Experimental Research.

Previous observational studies have reported an association between low levels of vitamin D and susceptibility to acute respiratory tract infections. Vitamin D modulates the response of white blood cells, preventing them from releasing too many inflammatory cytokines. The COVID-19 virus is known to cause an excess of pro-inflammatory cytokines.

Italy and Spain have both experienced high COVID-19 mortality rates, and the new study shows that both countries have lower average vitamin D levels than most northern European countries. This is partly because people in southern Europe, particularly the elderly, avoid strong sun, while skin pigmentation also reduces natural vitamin D synthesis.

The highest average levels of vitamin D are found in northern Europe, due to the consumption of cod liver oil and vitamin D supplements, and possibly less sun avoidance. Scandinavian nations are among the countries with the lowest number of COVID-19 cases and mortality rates per head of population in Europe.

Dr Lee Smith, Reader in Physical Activity and Public Health at Anglia Ruskin University, said:

“We found a significant crude relationship between average vitamin D levels and the number COVID-19 cases, and particularly COVID-19 mortality rates, per head of population across the 20 European countries.

“Vitamin D has been shown to protect against acute respiratory infections, and older adults, the group most deficient in vitamin D, are also the ones most seriously affected by COVID-19.

“A previous study found that 75% of people in institutions, such as hospitals and care homes, were severely deficient in vitamin D.  We suggest it would be advisable to perform dedicated studies looking at vitamin D levels in COVID-19 patients with different degrees of disease severity.”

Mr Petre Cristian Ilie, lead urologist of Queen Elizabeth Hospital King’s Lynn NHS Foundation Trust, said:

“Our study does have limitations however, not least because the number of cases in each country is affected by the number of tests performed, as well as the different measures taken by each country to prevent the spread of infection.  Finally, and importantly, one must remember correlation does not necessarily mean causation.”

May 12, 2020 Posted by | Aletho News | | Leave a comment

Vitamin D appears to play role in COVID-19 mortality rates

Patients with severe deficiency are twice as likely to experience severe complications, including death

Northwestern University | May 7, 2020

After studying global data from the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, researchers have discovered a strong correlation between severe vitamin D deficiency and mortality rates.

Led by Northwestern University, the research team conducted a statistical analysis of data from hospitals and clinics across China, France, Germany, Italy, Iran, South Korea, Spain, Switzerland, the United Kingdom (UK) and the United States.

The researchers noted that patients from countries with high COVID-19 mortality rates, such as Italy, Spain and the UK, had lower levels of vitamin D compared to patients in countries that were not as severely affected.

This does not mean that everyone — especially those without a known deficiency — needs to start hoarding supplements, the researchers caution.

“While I think it is important for people to know that vitamin D deficiency might play a role in mortality, we don’t need to push vitamin D on everybody,” said Northwestern’s Vadim Backman, who led the research. “This needs further study, and I hope our work will stimulate interest in this area. The data also may illuminate the mechanism of mortality, which, if proven, could lead to new therapeutic targets.”

The research is available on medRxiv, a preprint server for health sciences.

Backman is the Walter Dill Scott Professor of Biomedical Engineering at Northwestern’s McCormick School of Engineering. Ali Daneshkhah, a postdoctoral research associate in Backman’s laboratory, is the paper’s first author.

Backman and his team were inspired to examine vitamin D levels after noticing unexplained differences in COVID-19 mortality rates from country to country. Some people hypothesized that differences in healthcare quality, age distributions in population, testing rates or different strains of the coronavirus might be responsible. But Backman remained skeptical.

“None of these factors appears to play a significant role,” Backman said. “The healthcare system in northern Italy is one of the best in the world. Differences in mortality exist even if one looks across the same age group. And, while the restrictions on testing do indeed vary, the disparities in mortality still exist even when we looked at countries or populations for which similar testing rates apply.

“Instead, we saw a significant correlation with vitamin D deficiency,” he said.

By analyzing publicly available patient data from around the globe, Backman and his team discovered a strong correlation between vitamin D levels and cytokine storm — a hyperinflammatory condition caused by an overactive immune system — as well as a correlation between vitamin D deficiency and mortality.

“Cytokine storm can severely damage lungs and lead to acute respiratory distress syndrome and death in patients,” Daneshkhah said. “This is what seems to kill a majority of COVID-19 patients, not the destruction of the lungs by the virus itself. It is the complications from the misdirected fire from the immune system.”

This is exactly where Backman believes vitamin D plays a major role. Not only does vitamin D enhance our innate immune systems, it also prevents our immune systems from becoming dangerously overactive. This means that having healthy levels of vitamin D could protect patients against severe complications, including death, from COVID-19.

“Our analysis shows that it might be as high as cutting the mortality rate in half,” Backman said. “It will not prevent a patient from contracting the virus, but it may reduce complications and prevent death in those who are infected.”

Backman said this correlation might help explain the many mysteries surrounding COVID-19, such as why children are less likely to die. Children do not yet have a fully developed acquired immune system, which is the immune system’s second line of defense and more likely to overreact.

“Children primarily rely on their innate immune system,” Backman said. “This may explain why their mortality rate is lower.”

Backman is careful to note that people should not take excessive doses of vitamin D, which might come with negative side effects. He said the subject needs much more research to know how vitamin D could be used most effectively to protect against COVID-19 complications.

“It is hard to say which dose is most beneficial for COVID-19,” Backman said. “However, it is clear that vitamin D deficiency is harmful, and it can be easily addressed with appropriate supplementation. This might be another key to helping protect vulnerable populations, such as African-American and elderly patients, who have a prevalence of vitamin D deficiency.”

May 10, 2020 Posted by | Aletho News | | Leave a comment

Bill Gates’ Plan to Vaccinate the World

Watch on BitChute / LBRY / Minds / YouTube or Download video / Download audio

Corbett • 05/01/2020

TRANSCRIPT

Part One

Part Two: Bill Gates’ Plan to Vaccinate the World

POPPY HARLOW: Ten billion dollars. I mean, just speak about the magnitude of that. That is by far the biggest commitment of the foundation, isn’t it, Bill? I mean this is by far the largest.

BILL GATES: That’s right, we’ve been spending a lot on vaccines. With this commitment, over eight million additional lives will be saved. So it’s one of the most effective ways that health in the poorest countries can be dramatically improved.

SOURCE: Gates Foundation: $10 billion for vaccines

In January of 2010, Bill and Melinda Gates used the World Economic Forum at Davos to announce a staggering $10 billion commitment to research and develop vaccines for the world’s poorest countries, kicking off what he called a “decade of vaccines.”

GATES: Today we’re announcing a commitment over this next decade, which we think of as a decade of vaccines having incredible impact. We’re announcing that we’ll spend over $10 billion on vaccines.

SOURCE: PBS News Hour January 29, 2010 6:00pm-7:00pm EST

Hailed by the Gates-funded media . . .

HARI SREENIVASAN: For the record, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is a NewsHour underwriter.

SOURCE: PBS News Hour January 29, 2010 6:00pm-7:00pm EST

. . . and applauded by the pharmaceutical companies who stood to reap the benefits of that largesse, the record-setting commitment made waves in the international community, helping to underwrite a Global Vaccine Action Plan coordinated by the Gates-funded World Health Organization.

But contrary to Gates’ own PR spin that this $10 billion pledge was an unalloyed good and would save 8 million lives, the truth is that this attempt to reorient the global health economy was part of a much bigger agenda. An agenda that would ultimately lead to greater profits for big pharma companies, greater control for the Gates Foundation over the field of global health, and greater power for Bill Gates to shape the course of the future for billions of people around the planet.

This is Bill Gates’ Plan to Vaccinate the World.

You’re tuned into The Corbett Report.

Given Gates’ pledge to make this a “Decade of Vaccines,” it should come as no surprise that, since the dawn of this coronavirus crisis, he has been adamant that the world will not go back to normal until a vaccine has been developed.

GATES: We’re gonna have this intermediate period of opening up, and it won’t be normal until we get an amazing vaccine to the entire world.

SOURCE: Watch CNBC’s full interview with Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates on the coronavirus pandemic and his work toward a vaccine

GATES: The vaccine is critical, because, until you have that, things aren’t really going to be normal. They can open up to some degree, but the risk of a rebound will be there until we have very broad vaccination.

SOURCE: Bill Gates on where the COVID-19 pandemic will hurt the most

GATES: They won’t be back to normal until we either have that phenomenal vaccine or a therapeutic that’s like over 95% effective. And so we have to assume that’s going to be almost 18 months from now.

SOURCE: Bill Gates on Finding a Vaccine for COVID-19, the Economy, and Returning to ‘Normal Life’

GATES: And then the final solution—which is a year or two years off—is the vaccine.

COLBERT: Just to head off the conspiracy theorists, maybe we shouldn’t call the vaccine “the final solution.”

GATES: Good point.

COLBERT: Maybe just “the best solution.”

[GATES LAUGHS]

SOURCE: Bill Gates: Global Innovation Is The Key To Achieving A Return To Normal

More interestingly, since Gates began delivering this same talking point in every one of his many media appearances of late, it has been picked up and repeated by heads of state, health officials, doctors and media talking heads, right down to the scientifically arbitrary but very specific 18-month time frame.

ZEKE EMANUEL: Realistically, COVID-19 will be here for the next 18 months or more. We will not be able to return to normalcy until we find a vaccine or effective medications.

SOURCE: Dr. Zeke Emanuel On The Return To ‘Normal’

DOUG FORD: The hard fact is, until we have a vaccine, going back to normal means putting lives at risk.

SOURCE: Premier Doug Ford and Ontario ministers provide COVID-19 update – April 18, 2020

JUSTIN TRUDEAU: This will be the new normal until a vaccine is developed.

SOURCE: PM Trudeau on modelling data and federal response to COVID-19 – April 9, 2020

NORMAN SWAN: The only thing that will really allow life as we once knew it to resume is a vaccine.

SOURCE: Life will only return to normal when there’s a coronavirus vaccine, Dr Norman Swan says

DONALD TRUMP: Obviously, we continue to work on the vaccines, but the vaccines have to be down the road by probably 14, 15, 16 months.  We’re doing great on the vaccines.

SOURCE: Remarks by President Trump, Vice President Pence, and Members of the Coronavirus Task Force in Press Briefing

The fact that so many heads of state, health ministers and media commentators are dutifully echoing Gates’ pronouncement about the need for a vaccine will not be surprising to those who saw last week’s exploration of How Bill Gates Monopolized Global Health. As we have seen, the Gates Foundation’s tentacles have penetrated into every corner of the field of public health. Billions of dollars in funding and entire public policy agendas are under the control of this man, an unelected, unaccountable software developer with no medical research experience or training.

And nowhere is Gates’ control of global public health more apparent than in the realm of vaccines.

Gates launched the Decade of Vaccines with a $10 billion pledge.

Gates helped develop the Global Vaccine Action Plan administered by the Gates-funded World Health Organization.

Gates helped found Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, aiming to develop “healthy markets” for vaccine manufacturers.

Gates helped launch Gavi with a $1 billion donation in 2011, going on to contribute $4.1 billion over the course of the Decade of Vaccines.

GATES: And so I’m pleased to announce to you that we’re pledging an additional billion dollars—

[APPLAUSE]

GATES: Thank you.

[CONTINUED APPLAUSE]

GATES: Alright, thank you. It’s not everyday we give away a billion dollars.

[LAUGHTER]

SOURCE: Gates’ mammoth vaccine pledge

One of the Gates Foundation’s core funding areas is “vaccine development and surveillance,” which has resulted in the channeling of billions of dollars into vaccine development, a seat at the table to develop vaccination campaigns in countries around the globe, and the opportunity to shape public thinking around Bill Gates’ pet project of the past five years: preparing rapid development and deployment of vaccines in the event of a globally-spreading pandemic.

GATES: If anything kills over 10 million people in the next few decades, it’s most likely to be a highly infectious virus.

SOURCE: The next outbreak? We’re not ready | Bill Gates

GATES: Whether it occurs by a quirk of nature or at the hand of a terrorist, epidemiologists show through their models that a respiratory spread pathogen would kill more than 30 million people in less than a year and there is a reasonable probability of that taking place in the years ahead.

SOURCE: Gates: Millions could die from bio-terrorism

BABITA SHARMA: Many high-profile personalities have been meeting at this week’s World Economic Forum in Davos, which aims to discuss the globe’s most pressing issues. Amongst them is Microsoft founder Bill Gates, whose foundation is investing millions in the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations to help combat infectious diseases. Here’s some of what he had to say about his push to develop new vaccines.

SOURCE: BBC Newsday January 19, 2017

GATES: Unfortunately, it takes many years to do a completely new vaccine. The design, the safety review, the manufacturing; all those things mean that an epidemic can be very widespread before that tool would come along. And so after ebola the global health community talked a lot about this, including a new type of vaccine platform called DNA/RNA that should speed things along.

And so this Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Initiative [sic], CEPI, is three countries—Japan, Norway, Germany—and two foundations—Wellcome Trust, [who] we work with on a lot of things, and our foundation, the Gates Foundation—coming together to fund . . . actually trying to use that platform and make some vaccines. And so that would help us in the future.

SOURCE: Bill Gates at the World Economic Forum

NARRATORS: We know vaccines can protect us. We just need to be better prepared. So let’s come together, let’s research and invest. Let’s save lives. Let’s outsmart epidemics.

SOURCE: Let’s #OutsmartEpidemics

Given Gates’ mammoth investment in vaccines over the past decade, his insistence that . . .

GATES: Things won’t go back to truly normal until we have a vaccine that we’ve gotten out to basically the entire world.

SOURCE: Bill Gates on his 2015 ‘virus’ warning, efforts to fight coronavirus pandemic

. . . is hardly surprising.

What should be surprising is that this strangely specific and continuously repeated message—that we will not go “back to normal” until we get a vaccine in 18 months—has no scientific basis whatsoever. Medical researchers have already conceded that a vaccine for SARS-CoV-2 may not even be possible, pointing to the inability of researchers to develop any kind of immunization against previous coronavirus outbreaks, like SARS or MERS.

But even if such a vaccine were possible, serious concerns remain about the safety of developing, testing and delivering such an “amazing vaccine” to “the entire world” in this remarkably short timeframe. Even proponents of vaccine development openly worry that the rush to vaccinate billions of people with a largely untested, experimental coronavirus vaccine will itself present grave risks to the public.

One of these risks involves “disease enhancement.” It has been known for over a decade that vaccination for some viral infections—including coronaviruses—actually enhances susceptibility to viral infection or even causes infections in healthy vaccine recipients.

ANTHONY FAUCI: Now, the issue of safety. Something that I want to make sure the American public understand: It’s not only safety when you inject somebody and they get maybe an idiosyncratic reaction, they get a little allergic reaction, they get pain. There’s safety associated. “Does the vaccine make you worse?” And there are diseases in which you vaccinate someone, they get infected with what you’re trying to protect them with, and you actually enhance the infection.

SOURCE: Remarks by President Trump, Vice President Pence, and Members of the Coronavirus Task Force in Press Briefing (March 26)

This is no mere theoretical risk. As researchers who were trying to develop a vaccine for the original SARS outbreak discovered, the vaccine actually made the lab animals subjected to it more susceptible to the disease.

PETER HOTEZ: One of the things we are not hearing a lot about is potential safety problems of coronavirus vaccines. This was first found in the 1960s with Respiratory Syncytial Virus vaccines done in Washington with the  NIH and Children’s National Medical Center. Some of those kids who got the vaccine actually did worse, and I believe there were two deaths as a consequence of that study. Because what happens with certain types of respiratory virus vaccines, you get immunized and then when you get actually exposed to the virus you get this kind of paradoxical immune enhancement phenomenon and what—and we we don’t entirely understand the basis of it. But we recognize that it’s a real problem for certain respiratory virus vaccines. That killed the RSV program for decades. Now the Gates Foundation is taking it up again. But when we started developing coronavirus vaccines—and our colleagues—we noticed in laboratory animals that they started to show some of the same immune pathology that resembled what had happened 50 years earlier.

SOURCE: Hotez Coronavirus Vaccine Safety Testimony

This specific issue regarding coronavirus vaccines is exacerbated by the arbitrary and unscientific 18-month timeframe that Gates is inisisting on for the vaccine’s development. In order to meet that deadline, vaccine developers are being urged to use new and largely unproven methods for creating their experimental immunizations, including DNA and mRNA vaccines.

KELLY O’DONNELL: For a self-described wartime president victory over COVID-19 equals a vaccine.

TRUMP: I hope we can have a vaccine and we’re going to fast-track it like you’ve never seen before.

O’DONNELL: Adding Trump-style branding, the administration launched “Operation Warp Speed,” a multi-billion dollar research and manufacturing effort to shorten the typical year-plus vaccine development timeline.

SOURCE: Trump Administration’s ‘Operation Warp Speed’ Aims To Fast-Track Coronavirus Vaccine | Nightly News

ANTHONY FAUCI: We’re gonna start ramping up production with the companies involved, and you do that at risk. In other words, you don’t wait until you get an answer before you start manufacturing. You at risk proactively start making it, assuming it’s going to work.

SOURCE: Dr Fauci Discusses Operation Warp Speed’s Goal Of 100s Of Millions Of Vaccine Doses By January

BECKY QUICK: You’re thinking 18 months even with all the work that you’ve already done to this point and the planning that you are taking with lots of different potential vaccinations and building up for that now

GATES: Yeah, so the there’s an approach called RNA vaccine that people like Moderna, CureVac and others are using that in 2015 we identified that is very promising for pandemics and for other applications as well. And so if everything goes perfectly with the RNA approach we could actually beat the 18 months. We don’t want to create unrealistic expectations.

SOURCE: Watch CNBC’s full interview with Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates on the coronavirus pandemic and his work toward a vaccine

RHIJU DAS: So the concept of an RNA vaccine is: Let’s inject the RNA molecule that encodes for the spike protein.

ANGELA RASMUSSEN: It’s making your cell effectively do the work of creating this viral protein that is going to be recognized by your immune system and trigger the development of these antibodies.

DAS: Our bodies won’t make a full-fledged infectious virus. They’ll just make a little piece and then learn to recognize it and then get ready to destroy the virus if it then later comes and invades us.

[. . .]

DAS: It’s a relatively new, unproven technology. And there’s still no example of an RNA vaccine that’s been deployed worldwide in the way that we need for the coronavirus.

RASMUSSEN: There is the possibility for unforeseen, adverse effects.

AKIKO IWASAKI: So this is all new territory. Whether it would elicit protective, robust immune response against this virus is just unknown right now.

SOURCE: Can Scientists Use RNA to Create a Coronavirus Vaccine?

Rushing at “Warp Speed” to develop a new vaccine using experimental technology and then mass producing and delivering billions of doses to be injected into “basically the entire world” before adequate testing is even done amounts to one of the most dangerous experiments in the history of the world, one that could alter the lives of untold numbers of people.

That an experimental vaccine—developed in a brand new way and rushed through with a special, shortened testing regime—should be given to adults, children, pregnant women, newborn babies, and the elderly alike, would be, in any other situation, unthinkable. To suggest that such a vaccine should be given to the entire planet would have been called lunacy mere months ago. But now the public is being asked to accept this premise without question.

Even Gates himself acknowledges the inherent risks of such a project. But his concern is not for the lives that will be irrevocably altered in the event that the vaccines cause damage to the population. Instead, he is more concerned that the pharmaceutical companies and the researchers are given legal immunity for any such damage.

GATES: You know, if we have you know, one in 10,000 side effects, that’s, you know, way more, 700,000, you know, people who will suffer from that. So really understanding the safety at gigantic scale across all age ranges—you know, pregnant, male, female, undernourished, existing comorbidities—it’s very very hard. And that actual decision of, “OK, let’s go and give this vaccine to the entire world,” governments will have to be involved because there will be some risk and indemnification needed before that can be decided on.

SOURCE: Watch CNBC’s full interview with Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates on the coronavirus pandemic and his work toward a vaccine

As we have already seen, in the arena of global health, what Bill Gates wants is what the world gets. So it should be no surprise that immunity for the Big Pharma vaccine manufacturers and the vaccination program planners is already being worked on.

In the US, the Department of Health and Human Services issued a declaration that retroactively provides “liability immunity for activities related to medical countermeasures against COVID-19,” including manufacturers, distributors and program planners of “any vaccine, used to treat, diagnose, cure, prevent, or mitigate COVID-19.” The declaration was issued on March 17th but retroactively covers any activity back to February 4, 2020, the day before the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation announced an emergency $100 million to fund treatment efforts and to develop new vaccines for COVID-19.

The plan to inject everyone on the planet with an experimental vaccine is no aberration in Bill Gates’ envisioned “Decade of Vaccines.” It is its culmination.

The Decade of Vaccines kicked off with a Gates-funded $3.6 million observational study of HPV vaccines in India that, according to a government investigation, violated the human rights of the study participants with “gross violations” of consent, and failed to properly report adverse events experienced by the vaccine recipients. After the deaths of seven girls involved in the trial were reported, a parliamentary investigation concluded that the Gates-funded Program for Appropriate Technology in Health (PATH), which ran the study, had been engaged in a scheme to help ensure “healthy markets” for GlaxoSmithKline and Merck, the manufacturers of the Gardasil and Cervarix vaccines that had been so generously donated for use in the trial:

“Had PATH been successful in getting the HPV vaccine included in the universal immunization program of the concerned countries, this would have generated windfall profit for the manufacturer(s) by way of automatic sale, year after year, without any promotional or marketing expenses. It is well known that once introduced into the immunization program it becomes politically impossible to stop any vaccination.”

Chandra M. Gulhati, editor of the influential Monthly Index of Medical Specialities, remarked that “It is shocking to see how an American organization used surreptitious methods to establish itself in India” and Samiran Nundy, editor emeritus of the National Medical Journal of India lamented that “This is an obvious case where Indians were being used as guinea pigs.”

Throughout the decade, India’s concerns about the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and its corporate partners’ influence on the country’s national immunization programs grew. In 2016, the steering group of the country’s National Health Mission blasted the government for allowing the country’s National Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation—the primary body advising the government on all vaccination-related matters—to be effectively purchased by the Gates Foundation.

As one steering group member noted: “The NTAGI secretariat has been moved out of the [government’s health] ministry to the office of Public Health Foundation of India and the 32 staff members in that secretariat draw their salaries from the BMGF. There is a clear conflict of interest—on one hand, the BMGF funds the secretariat that is the highest decision making body in vaccines and, on the other, it partners the pharma industry in GAVI. This is unacceptable.”

In 2017, the government responded by cutting all financial ties between the advisory group and the Gates Foundation.

Similar stories play out across the Gates Foundation’s Decade of Vaccines.

There’s the Gates-founded and funded Meningitis Vaccine Project, which led to the creation and testing of MenAfriVac, a $0.50 per dose immunization against meningococcal meningitis. The tests led to reports of between 40 and 500 children suffering seizures and convulsions and eventually becoming paralyzed.

There’s the 2017 confirmation that the Gates-supported oral polio vaccine was actually responsible for the majority of new polio cases, and the 2018 follow up showing that 80% of polio cases are now vaccine-derived.

There’s the 2018 paper in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health concluding that over 490,000 people in India developed paralysis as a result of the oral polio vaccine between 2000 and 2017.

There’s even the WHO’s own malaria chief, Dr. Arata Kochi, who complained in an internal memo that Gates’ influence meant that the world’s leading malaria scientists are now “locked up in a ‘cartel’ with their own research funding being linked to those of others within the group,” and that the foundation “was stifling debate on the best ways to treat and combat malaria, prioritizing only those methods that relied on new technology or developing new drugs.”

Kochi’s complaint, written in 2008, highlights the most common criticism of the global health web that Gates has spun in the past two decades: That the public health industry has become a racket run by and for Big Pharma and its partners for the benefit of big business.

At the time that Kochi was writing his memo, the executive director of the Gates Foundation’s Global Health program was Tachi Yamada. Yamada left his position as Chairman of Research and Development at GlaxoSmithKline to take up the position at the Gates Foundation in 2006, and left the foundation five years later to become Chief Medical and Scientific Officer at Takeda Pharmaceuticals. Yamada’s replacement as head of Gates’ Global health program, Trevor Mundel was himself a clinical researcher at Pfizer and Parke-Davis and spent time as head of development with Novartis before joining the foundation.

This use of foundation funds to set public policy to drive up corporate profits is not a secret conspiracy. It is a perfectly open one.

When the Center for Global Development formed a working group to “develop a practical approach to the vaccine challenge,” they concluded that the best way to incentivize pharmaceutical companies to produce more vaccines for the third world was for governments to promise to buy vaccines before they were even developed. They titled their report “Making Markets for Vaccines.”

ALICE ALBRIGHT: The project “Making Markets for Vaccines” was really designed to address a problem that’s existed for a long time, which is insufficient research and development budgets as well as investment capacity in vaccine development and production for the third world. How do you create better incentives to get the pharma community—the vaccine community—to produce products that are specifically dedicated for the developing world.

RUTH LEVINE: Michael Kramer, a professor at Harvard, had been thinking about this problem for many years.

OWEN BARDER: He realized that if the rich countries of the world were to make a promise that they would buy a malaria vaccine if somebody produced it, that would give an incentive to the pharmaceutical industry to go and do the research and development needed to make one. But this idea was unfamiliar. No government had made a commitment to buy a product that didn’t already exist.

SOURCE: Making Markets for Vaccines

When the first such “Advanced Market Commitment” was made in 2007—a $1.5 billion promise to buy yet-to-be-produced vaccines from Big Pharma manufacturers—there was the Gates Foundation as the only non-nation sponsor.

The Gates-founded Gavi Vaccine Alliance is an open partnership between the Gates Foundation, the World Health Organization, the World Bank and the vaccine manufacturers. Their stated goals includes “introducing new vaccines into the routine schedules of national immunization programmes” and to engage in “market shaping efforts” to ensure “healthy markets for vaccines and other immunization products.”

If “introducing new vaccines” and ensuring healthy markets for them was the aim of Gates’ “Decade of Vaccines,” there can be no doubt that COVID-19 has seen that goal realized in spectacular fashion.

URSULA VON DER LEYEN: Let’s start the pledging.

KATIE STEPHENS: The EU kicked off its fundraising drive with 1 billion euros. In the hours that followed, pledges were beamed in from across the globe.

TAWFIG ALRABIAH: The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has pledged 500 million dollars.

STEPHENS: Even pop icon Madonna made a last-minute donation of a million euros.

SOURCE: What’s behind the global €7.4 billion vaccine pledge? | Coronavirus Update

MELINDA GATES: By combining the world’s expertise and brainpower and resources, we can attack this disease in the way it’s attacking us: globally. Our foundation is proud to partner with you and I’m pleased to announce today that we will pledge a hundred million dollars towards this effort.

SOURCE: #Coronavirus Global Response International Pledging Conference

KATIE STEPHENS: Germany was one of the leading donors, pledging over five hundred million euros. The money is earmarked for international health organizations and research networks in a bid to speed up the development of a vaccine.

SOURCE: What’s behind the global €7.4 billion vaccine pledge? | Coronavirus Update

And there, at the center of this web, is the Gates Foundation, connected to every major organization, research institution, international alliance and vaccine manufacturer involved in the current crisis.

Certainly, the Gates—like the Rockefellers—have profited from their years as “the most generous people on the planet.” As curious as it might seem to those who don’t understand the true nature of this monopoly cartel, despite all of these grants and pledges—commitments of tens of billions of dollars—Bill Gates’ personal net worth has actually doubled during this Decade of Vaccines, from $50 billion to over $100 billion.

But once again we come back to the question: Who is Bill Gates? Is he motivated simply by money? Is this incessant drive to vaccinate the entire population of the planet merely the result of greed? Or is there something else driving this agenda?

As we shall see next time, money is not the end goal of Gates’ “philanthropic” activities. Money is just the tool that he is using to purchase what he really wants: control. Control not just of the health industry, but control of the human population itself.

May 8, 2020 Posted by | Corruption, Deception, Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular, Video | , | Leave a comment