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Nevada Today

Nevada Today is a nonpartisan, independently owned and operated site dedicated to providing up-to-date news and smart analysis on the issues that impact Nevada's communities and businesses.

2020 ElectionBio-TerrorismCOVID-19HealthNews and information

This Week in Corona Scams: (Bio-)Weapons of Mass Dysfunction

Is COVID-19 some secret “globalist bio-weapon”? Has President Donald Trump been right all along about hydroxychloroquine being a “game changing miracle cure”? Might special magical beads deliver the ultimate “bombshell” of a cure? And will the COVID-19 vaccine completely destroy human fertility?

Spoiler alert: Hells to the no! So this week in Corona Scams, we’re checking back in on the White House to see what they’re saying… And let you know whether there’s any truth to any of their rhetoric.

So what has Alex Jones been saying, and why is Donald Trump now echoing him?
Donald Trump
Photo by Andrew Davey

For months, we’ve been keeping tabs on conspiracy scammer extraordinaire Alex Jones. This is no accident or coincidence. Rather, as I explained during our original “Web of Hate” series, Alex Jones is one of a group of gatekeepers who expand far-right extremists’ reach into a broader audience. And in case that’s not enough, he also sells overpriced vitamins that curiously resemble Gwyneth Paltrow’s favorite overpriced vitamins featured at Goop.

Such is the case with the “globalist bioweapon” conspiracy theory. While running into trouble with the FDA over his fraudulent “coronavirus cures”, getting caught doing everything but social distancing at his “Reopen Texas” rally, and grabbing attention with his horribly lurid foray into cannibalism, Jones has generally been pushing the notion that COVID-19 is really a “Chinese military bio-weapon” that the Chinese government, the United Nations, and the Democratic Party allegedly spread around the world and imported into the U.S. for the specific purpose of taking down President Donald Trump

For the last three weeks, Trump himself and top Trump administration officials have been parroting Jones’ “globalist bioweapon” claim in the hopes of deflecting blame from their own record of allowing COVID-19 free reign over America and manufacturing a new scandal to hammer former Vice President Joe Biden on. Sure, this “bioweapon” claim makes for some extra punchy campaign attack ads, but is there any truth to it?

So what does actual science prove?

Earlier this month, the Los Angeles Times published an extensive deep dive into the genetic makeup of SARS-CoV-2, also known as the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19. The scientists who have been researching the genetic coding of SARS-CoV-2 are increasingly convinced that the novel coronavirus has lived for a long enough time in bats and other animals that it no longer makes them sick, and that SARS-CoV-2 made the jump from other animals to humans some time late last year.

But wait, doesn’t the White House have military intelligence proving that SARS-CoV-2 originated at the Wuhan Institute of Virology? Actually, no. In fact, The Daily Beast has a new expose showing how the Trump administration is deliberately misinterpreting satellite and cell phone location data. And now, the White House appears to be selectively leaking materials to select media outlets to shift focus away from Trump’s (mis)handling of the COVID-19 outbreak and towards this easily debunkable conspiracy theory. 

As we’ve been warning for some time, there’s real danger in allowing this very real pandemic to devolve into yet another “culture war partisan battle”. No matter how many times Trump and his family try to deflect blame elsewhere, we must not lose sight of what is real and what is not.

Once again, please seek health advice from actual medical professionals (as in, NOT Donald Trump).

Yesterday, Donald Trump bragged about his own personal use of hydroxychloroquine as he again shilled for the “game changing miracle cure” that still hasn’t been proven to be an effective COVID-19 treatment. Despite Trump’s touting of select anecdotal “success stories”, and despite The New York Times’ recent glowing profile of the French hydroxychloroquine promoting microbiologist Didier Raoult as a “brave maverick”, there’s still little evidence suggesting hydroxychloroquine prevents, treats, and/or cures COVID-19.

Rather, we’ve seen growing evidence in the last two months indicating that hydroxychloroquine has not changed any game in regards to treating COVID-19. And even worse, there’s new evidence suggesting hydroxychloroquine may be deadly for certain patients who really shouldn’t be using this drug that’s meant to treat rheumatoid arthritis, malaria, and lupus. But of course, instead of focusing on efforts to find real science-based medicine that works, the Trump administration removed Dr. Rick Bright as Director of the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) for objecting to Trump’s rush to issue an emergency authorization of hydroxychloroquine for COVID-19 treatment (that perhaps never should have happened in the first place).

 

Back in March, we warned everyone not to fall for Donald Trump’s and Didier Raoult’s “game changing” siren songs. Fortunately, Governor Steve Sisolak (D) took action to prevent a hydroxychloroquine shortage that would have harmed both patients who need it and prevent the drug from falling into the wrong hands. Unfortunately, the (four Republicans on the) Washoe County Commission joined a lawsuit last month to try to overturn Sisolak’s order. Yet earlier this month, the Washoe County Commission backed out of the lawsuit

We can only hope those four (Republican) Washoe County Commissioners learned a valuable lesson here. But in case they and/or others are still tempted to tout more pseudo-scientific “corona cures”, we’ll continue to look past the hype, break through the noise, and focus on the facts so you can make more informed (and hopefully, less dangerous!) health decisions.

If you’re in need of medical treatment, contact your primary health care provider first. If you fear you can’t afford treatment from a hospital or doctor’s office, check with the Southern Nevada Health DistrictWashoe County Health DistrictCarson City Health and Human Services, or the Nevada Department of Health and Human Services for resources in your area. For additional aid, check the Nevada Current’s and Battle Born Progress’ resource guides. If you can afford proper treatment and you are fortunate enough to help others in need, please donate to larger operations like Direct Relief and Mutual Aid Disaster Relief, and to local groups like Three Square.

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