Is nearly everybody a 'Conspiracy Theorist' Now in Covid Times?
PART ONE: IDENTIFYING AND DEFINING THE CONSPIRACY THEORIST
Who and what is a conspiracy theorist?
This has become one of the most commonly used phrases of the COVID era embracing anyone who challenges the mainstream COVID narrative. It is now being used to justify censoring social media platforms, taking down Facebook, YouTube and Twitter accounts of individuals or groups that gives an alternative view to the mainstream position, however respected they may be in their field of expertise. It is quite extraordinary when ordinary doctors and citizens are being censored and labelled a conspiracy theorist for simply disagreeing with the government’s position on how to deal with the virus. Another word commonly used now is to be a “denier or denialist”. Are you a Covid denialist?
Nowhere is the conspiracy theory label used more commonly now than to describe anyone who questions that a COVID19 vaccine is anything but essential, perfectly safe and will save humanity. These “anti-vaxxers” are being described as somewhat unhinged people, resisting the best of Science in some kind of luddite stubbornness, crazy right-wing libertarianism, hippy fundamentalism, neo-Nazi extremism or just plain “conspiracy theory” insanity. Is this a correct analysis of those who question vaccines, or are their concerns relevant as we rush towards a corona virus vaccine that has eluded scientists for many years.
The government is concerned that these “anti-vaxxer” types will now resist common sense and make a big fuss and conspire against the wisdom of our “experts”, Boris Johnson calling those who question vaccines as “nuts.” The media in the USA and UK has been going on about this for a number of months now, reflecting “health experts” position that only a vaccine will solve this crisis. As soon as this statement was used by “experts,” governments all followed, saying the same thing. “This will only end when a vaccine is found.” This was in March/April when we didn’t know how long this would last. Both the USA and UK governments have since given billions of dollars/pounds to the largest drug companies in the world to find a vaccine and there are now over 100 different companies world-wide racing to be first and get the potential profits, so the stakes are high. To say it is a feeding frenzy doesn’t even begin to do justice to the way money is being literally thrown at already very rich drug companies.
As a rehearsal for the coming juggernaut of vaccine propaganda for a COVID19 vaccine, the UK government is now rolling out its plans to encourage nearly everybody (you are exempt if under 2 years of age unless you are vulnerable ) to get a flu jab, which will do nothing to protect against COVID19, but will apparently help us stay healthy, prevent stress on the health system and overall be a good thing. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the American media has been particularly good at bombarding people every year with fear of the next global pandemic, saturating the media with all kinds of “science”, but even then, only about 47% of adults in the US bother to get one. Even the British Medical Journal commented on the fact the U.S. figures seemed more like PR than Science, confusing flu and pneumonia and maybe therefore inflating figures. In the UK now, in wake of COVID19, the sudden crucial need for a flu vaccine takes on more seriousness, with the government giving everyone over 50 years old a free vaccine as well as children, front line workers and under 2’s who are vulnerable. Only in the USA do they routinely start at 6 months of age with a flu jab but I am sure we will get there in time in the UK with the ever changing “facts” regarding the need for a flu vaccine.
What is the media saying about the anti-vaxx conspiracy theorists?
Just to get a flavour of the types of articles being written about anybody who even dares to doubt that all vaccines are needed and totally safe, the following articles in the New York Times and the UK Guardian, both upstanding representatives of journalistic integrity, reveal their concerns about these crazy “anti-vaxxers.” They could even be seen to be complementary to those questioning the vaccine propaganda if it wasn’t so silly.
However, the fact remains that there is a legitimate and democratic discussion to be had regards the necessity and safety of any vaccine, as part of the larger debate regarding how our governments and experts have handled this crisis. To simply demonize those who may question whether spending many many billions of dollars/pounds for a vaccine undermines their own argument. The issue of safety is very significant as is the fact that over 99% of the world’s population is unlikely to get very sick with the virus. There may be other better solutions to explore like ensuring hospitals have quarantine centres, and to have better resources for elderly and vulnerable. And yet, all we are hearing is how crucial and vital a vaccine is and how “crazy” are those that question it. The following articles in “serious” newspapers show how far this has now gone in the era of Covid.
In the New York Times on May 16th, an article titled: Get Ready for a Vaccine Information War: Social media is already filling up with misinformation about a Covid-19 vaccine, months or years before one even exists. https://www.nytimes.com/2020/05/13/technology/coronavirus-vaccine-disinformation.html
In the article it is described how a highly efficient and well trained anti-vaxx movement is ready to spring into action in the event a Covid-19 vaccine is ready for use. The article expresses the profound concern that large numbers of people will be influenced by this and not take the vaccine.
If that is the case, then surely the question should be, why are so many people very concerned about the idea of a Covid-19 vaccine being ready to use within a mere few months? Since the SARS Cov-1 epidemic in 2003, scientists have been unable to produce a vaccine for this type of corona virus. What has changed since then?
The New York Times article uses very emotive language:
“This war could pit public health officials and politicians against an anti-vaccination movement that floods social media with misinformation, conspiracy theories and propaganda aimed at convincing people that the vaccine is a menace rather than a lifesaving, economy-rescuing miracle.”
As the article continues:
“I’ve been following the anti-vaccine community on and off for years, watching its members operate in private Facebook groups and Instagram accounts, and have found that they are much more organized and strategic than many of their critics believe. They are savvy media manipulators, effective communicators and experienced at exploiting the weaknesses of social media platforms.”
“In short, the anti-vaxxers have been practicing for this. And I’m worried that they will be unusually effective in sowing doubts about a Covid-19 vaccine for several reasons. First, because of the pandemic’s urgency, any promising Covid-19 vaccine is likely to be fast-tracked through the testing and approval process. It may not go through years of clinical trials and careful studies of possible long-term side effects the way other drugs do. That could create an opening for anti-vaccine activists to claim that it is untested and dangerous, and to spin reasonable concerns about the vaccine into widespread, unfounded fears about its safety.”
If the vaccine is being rushed through and bypassing the years of studies normally needed to ensure its safety, isn’t this a cause of legitimate concern? It is not only “anti-vaxxers” saying this, but many other vaccine researchers and scientists, including the WHO. The WHO states:
The major concern is that animal studies of some, but not all, vaccine candidates against the related coronaviruses, have shown enhanced disease can occur in immunized animals upon subsequent exposure to live virus.
“Evaluating the potential for enhanced disease in humans is critical before [vaccines] can be assessed through larger-scale studies, the roadmap says.
The “enhanced disease” described above has been a serious concern in many recent vaccine experiments. Trials should be done on enough people for a long period of time to see how effective and safe they may be. This is not what is being planned now in the fast-tracked vaccine schedule of many drug companies, racing to be first in line, with profits waiting. For example, the Oxford University trial in the UK, in partnership with AstraZeneca, one of the front runners in the vaccine race has had just over 1,000 participants (healthy people age 18-55) in its study in the 1st and 2nd phase of the trial which is predominantly about safety and not efficacy which will come in phase 3. But that hasn’t prevented them stating how well the vaccine “seems” to be showing efficacy and pumping up its profile. The UK government has just given another £84 million for phase 3 of the research, which is about efficacy not safety, involving 30,000 people in the U.S. as well as phase 3 trials in low-to-middle income countries, including Brazil and South Africa. There were demonstrations in South Africa recently regarding the vaccine trials being carried out, with people concerned about the use of “guinea pigs” in the trials, generally poor people who may not be aware of all the consequences of participating, as well as the history of poor people in Africa and elsewhere being used in many previous drug trials. More recently they said they are expanding their trials in South Africa.
The issue of the ethics of drug research was discussed in the New York Review of Books on July 2nd in an article called “An Ethical Path to a Covid Vaccine” which reviewed a book called “Adverse Events, Inequality, and the Testing of New Pharmaceuticals.” The history of drug research has been full of examples where the poor, prisoners, prostitutes, psychiatric patients, soldiers and other people who either had little choice or for economic reasons were the participants in drug research. The article discusses, amongst other things, doing a “challenge study” in which researchers give healthy people a new vaccine and then infect them with the pathogen being tested, in this case the corona virus. The general view is that this wouldn’t be ethical as there is no accepted treatment for COVID19 but the author of the article discusses the growing call for challenge studies to be introduced for COVID19 vaccine trials. This could even involve elderly people in nursing homes who may well not survive the experience. The author uses this as a possible example of how previous drug research has often profoundly crossed the ethical line, comprising medical ethics and human rights. As the race for a vaccine heats up now, some drug companies may be tempted to embark on doing challenge studies for Covid. As the article states, most drug research today involves poor people, who do repeated trials as a form of subsistence income. Given the numbers of current trials for a COVID19 vaccine, the ethical issue of the role of participants should be an ongoing concern, whether its in the U.S., UK or low-to-middle-income countries.
The article states further:
“Third, if and when a Covid-19 vaccine is approved for widespread use, people may be required to take it before being allowed to fly on certain airlines, attend certain schools or enter certain businesses. That’s a good idea, public health-wise, but it would play into some of the worst fears of the anti-vaccine movement.”
“Mandatory vaccination has been an especially potent talking point for anti-vaccine activists, some of whom have rebranded themselves “pro-choice” when it comes to vaccines. And years of battling states and school districts over mandatory vaccine policies have given them a playbook for creating a tangle of legal roadblocks and damaging publicity campaigns.”
Well, yes, a mandatory vaccine for Covid-19 does play into the worst fears of many people who question the agenda of Big Pharma to push ever more vaccines onto people, using the force of law to impose their point and who are exempt from legal liability, not to mention fundamental constitutional issues like freedom of speech. This is no small thing.
In another article, this time in the UK Guardian on May 25th, Europe's Covid predicament: how do you solve a problem like the antivaxxers? Compulsory vaccination risks boosting a protest movement gaining ground in Europe’s cities, the article states that:
“…The alliance of anti-vaxxers, neo-Nazi rabble-rousers and esoteric hippies, which has in recent weeks been filling town squares in cities such as Berlin, Vienna and Zurich is starting to trouble governments as they map out scenarios for re-booting their economies and tackling the coronavirus long term.”
The article expresses concern that the move to make any vaccine mandatory would only activate the above “class” of people into a street movement, who are infected with conspiracy theories about “Big Pharma” and government’s authoritarian tendencies. The article stated that research in some European countries showed that anything between 10-40% of people asked were not interested in getting a vaccine if one was produced for Covid-19. Isn’t this rather a sign of people thinking for themselves and not being willing guinea pigs for the interests of Big Pharma. Why should people believe them? Unless of course, you agree with the editorial in Forbes magazine recently that said that “you must not do your own research when it comes to Science.” Well, OK then. Thanks for letting us know. It is interesting how even many liberal progressives, who may normally be critical of the neo-liberal capitalist order, give the pharmaceutical industry a free pass. Perhaps it is part of putting “Science” on a pedestal.
“While scientists predict that immunising about 70% of the population could be sufficient for the virus to vanish, there are concerns that a noisy minority could seize the narrative around vaccination.”
“There’s a real fear of an unholy alliance between esoteric left-wingers, the far right and the Reichsbürger movement,” said Natalie Grams, a doctor and author who specialises in debunking claims about the effectiveness of alternative medicine.
Ok then. Good to know that the doctor and author is unbiased when it comes to alternative medicine.
In another article in the esteemed Guardian newspaper in the UK on Monday June 8th,
entitled ‘Evil forces': how Covid-19 paranoia united the wellness industry and right-wing conspiracy theorists: Wellness advocates used to talk about Bali retreats and coconut oil. Now it’s Bill Gates and 5G.
The author makes the case that there is a new alliance between the new age movement and radical right-wing movements, what has been described as “fusion paranoia” by another writer. This is the coming together of left wing “anti-war” activists with more right-wing “pro-civil liberties” groups which the author states “shared common traits of anti-government views and belief in conspiracy theories.” Anti-vaxxer = conspiracy theorist.
To quote from the article:
“Such a tight alliance (or fusion paranoia) between the wellness industry and the far-right would have been unthinkable to me a year ago. But the connection between the alt-right, conspiracy theorists and sections of the wellness community have strengthened and bonded during global lockdowns. The messages of the different groups are remarkably the same: the virus is a cover for a plot of totalitarian proportions, designed to stifle freedom of movement, assembly, speech and – to the horror of some in the wellness industry – enforce a program of mass vaccinations.
A popular, multitrillion-dollar sector, the wellness industry’s huge reach and influence has the power to bring people into the conspiracy that previously would not have had any contact with the alt-right. “
Again, we see a common narrative. The huge, multitrillion dollar wellness industry aligning itself with extreme forces to combat the essential life-saving vaccine, soon to be given to all and ideally mandated by law. To imagine that this “multitrillion dollar wellness industry” is some kind of coherent movement! This is in the Guardian! And again, there is no reflection whether a mandated vaccine is needed, is democratic and in anyway threatens basic liberties. Does it not justify some legitimate discussion and reflection? Do the numbers of deaths in the pandemic justify crossing such a democratic Rubicon and when the vast majority of the planet is either immune or has no susceptibility to the virus? Have governments worldwide simply abrogated their responsibilities and duties to protect the people for Big Business interests and the growing surveillance state? These are fair enough questions.
And finally, back to the New York Times again, on August 3rd: Thousands March Against Virus Measures in Berlin. “An estimated 17,000 people defied social distancing and mask requirements in a protest supported by neo-Nazi groups, conspiracy theorists as well as Germans who said they were fed up with the restrictions.”
What these four articles share is the demonization of any questioning of the conventional narrative of COVID19 and the use of words such as “anti-vaxxer”, “conspiracy theorist”, “far left/right” as a way of delegitimizing any concerns people may have. It is no longer journalism but simple opinion pieces, propaganda for one particular perspective. Many who are questioning the whole COVID19 situation find it extraordinary to be given so much power but this is a common strategy in any form of propaganda. A German doctor friend of mine was at the rally. The vast majority of people were “normal” citizens simply voicing their concern at what the government is doing. A few black shirted types were around, but no neo-Nazis as far as he could see! Estimates of the number there were rather more than 17,000 as well, more like 500,000.
PART TWO: THE AGENDA OF BIG PHARMA IN CREATING VACCINES
The challenges of vaccine research and the money being spent
After the 2003, Sars-Cov-1 pandemic, vaccine trials were initiated but it never got beyond the animal stage of trials. Challenges with extreme reactions to other natural viruses were seen, often described as an “enhanced immune response,” or “Antibody Dependent Enhancement.” Therefore, a human vaccine has not been found since then. The most famous mishap with a swine flu vaccine though was in the 1976 outbreak in the USA, which led to over 40 million people receiving the vaccine and serious side-effects, the most common being a neurological condition called Guillain-Barre Syndrome. This led to the vaccine being stopped and greatly eroded the confidence of the American people in vaccines. It is useful to look at the history of the flu vaccine and its ups and downs ever since the terrible “Spanish Flu” pandemic of 1918, which is always the baseline for looking at the worst case scenario for a possible flu pandemic. Finding safe vaccines for viruses is not easy and shouldn’t be rushed. This was experienced in 2014 when experimental vaccine for a viral disease found in the tropics called Dengue fever led to many side-effects and deaths in trials in the Philippines with the vaccine being banned. There are many other examples of problems with vaccine trials. Will it be any different for a corona virus or new flu vaccine now? After the swine flu of 2009, a new vaccine was produced which led to many cases of narcolepsy in those receiving it. The vaccine was removed from the market.
In the Cochrane Review, the following research was done on flu vaccines and especially their usefulness for healthy people and concluded that the vaccine serves little purpose when given to healthy people and have very moderate effect. In an earlier study the same researchers came to the following conclusion:
“The results of this review provide no evidence for the utilisation of vaccination against influenza in healthy adults as a routine public health measure. As healthy adults have a low risk of complications due to respiratory disease, the use of the vaccine may only be advised as an individual protective measure.”
Flu vaccines in general have been inconsistent at best in their efficacy. Overall, evidence shows that they don’t work about 50% of the time and there is some evidence that flu vaccines may predispose to other viral and bacterial diseases, meaning that a person may get more sick even from a corona virus if they have a flu vaccine. Also, children between 2-18 years old can be given a nasal live flu vaccine, which in the insert, the following advice is given: if you are in close contact with someone with a severely weakened immune system (for example, a bone marrow transplant patient needing isolation). In fact, given it’s a live flu virus, it means that it can spread in the surrounding air for some days or weeks with whomever that child is in contact with: parents, grandparents, including immune compromised people, or even people with COVID19.
Therefore, people have every right to be concerned about a vaccine that is currently being rushed to market for COVID19 and being allowed to circumvent long term animal and human trials. If the flu vaccine isn’t necessary for healthy people, why would a Covid vaccine be? The UK government seems to have no hesitancy though. Not only has it invested millions with Oxford University/AstraZeneca’s and Imperial College’s vaccine programme, it recently made a deal with GlaxoSmithKline, BioNTech/Pfizer and a company called Valneva so that it will have 250 million doses of the vaccine available for the people of Britain, population 63 million. That is 4 doses of a vaccine for each man, woman and child. The government has already pledged 744 million pounds for corona virus research and an annual £330 million pounds contribution to GAVI vaccine alliance, (the largest donor) as well as £250 million to the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Initiative (CEPI), where our Chief Scientific Officer Dr Chris Whitty was on the interim board in 2017 and now chairs the UK Vaccine Network. CEPI also has a partnership with Imperial College, London. The government announced this dramatically on May 4th with Boris Johnson saying its “humanity against the virus.” The government also admitted it has since spent $10 billion on the Contact/Tracing programme and another £15 billion on PPE for the health service. Much of this has gone to private companies, likely without tenders, leading to some serious criticism. It has also planned to invest in a new state-of-the-art Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult Manufacturing Innovation Centre in Braintree, Essex to mass produce a vaccine for the whole country in six months. For a government that since the financial crisis in 2008-9 has been pleading poverty and the need for yet more austerity, the turnaround is enough to make even the most pro-vaxx person wonder if the billions being spent are really justified and whether buying vaccines in advance, when they might not even work, may be a waste of taxpayer’s money. It is a legitimate question, even if you think a vaccine is a good idea.
Will these new vaccines be safe?
And finally, can we talk a little more about safety concerning the possible COVID19 vaccines. Two of the leading vaccine companies, U.S. based Moderna and Inovio, both funded by CEPI (and therefore the UK government) are using new DNA and mRNA technology that has never successfully been used before and not been licensed for use. Imperial College’s vaccine is also using new DNA technology These vaccines may change the DNA structure in the hosts receiving the vaccine. No one knows what the long-term impact of these vaccines will be. It is a crap shoot and no one can say it has been scientifically proven to be safe. It is possible that these DNA/RNA vaccines could be embedded in a person’s germ line cells in reproductive systems and then passed on through generations, changing the very fabric of human DNA. Both U.S. companies have been working in partnership with the Pentagon’s Defence Advanced Research Project Agency (DARPA), which has been experimenting with this type of vaccine technology for a while, being interested in its military application, amongst other things. DARPA has been accredited with helping develop the DNA and RNA vaccines with Moderna and Inovio which could lead to a COVID19 vaccine. DARPA’s interest in exploring the use of nanotechnology and genetic applications for military and other purposes have caused concern for some time. The gene drive research described in the article has also been carried out at Imperial College, London. The more one looks into DARPA, the scarier it gets and the more one inevitably meanders into the territory known as “conspiracy thinking.” In fact, when you really study this stuff, it’s hard not to go there unless you believe that the U.S. military’s interest and that of vaccine industries is simply for the benign well-being of humanity. If so, then no problem but the history of the U.S. military research is not that innocent, so if they are investing a lot of time into this type of technology, including the use of nanotechnology to have specific affects in the hosts of vaccines, then there are reasons to be concerned. The U.S. military’s research into anthrax vaccine and using military personnel as guinea pigs is but one egregious example.
There are many other questions that can be asked about the links between the vaccine industry and their partners from the US military. DARPA has been working in the contentious “gain of function” research based at Fort Dietrich, Maryland, the centre of the US biowarfare and medical research since after the 2nd World War. The gain of function research was suspended from 2014 to 2017 due to concerns over safety but conveniently continued in one of its partner laboratories, the Wuhan Institute of Virology before starting up again in the USA. This research involves manipulating pathogens to alter their capabilities. A Fort Dietrich laboratory involving Ebola and other viral research was controversially closed in July 2019 by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) due to bio-safety standards and opened again in November, although some of the same issues remained. Inovio has also been working with the Pentagon’s Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) as part of its active biodefense programme and were given $45 million to create a vaccine for Ebola. It has also worked on a DNA vaccine for Zika virus, but which has not been given authorization for use in humans in the USA. It also was given a grant from the U.S. military to develop a small, portable intradermal device for delivering DNA vaccines jointly developed by Inovio and the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases (USAMRID). CEPI has also invested in Inovio to make a DNA vaccine for the corona virus that caused MERS (Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome). Inovio is the only company chosen by CEPI that has a direct access to the Chinese pharmaceutical market. So, it’s good to know that the British tax payer is subsidising US drug and vaccine research to help the profits of these companies selling their stuff to China!
Who is influencing the narrative regarding the vaccine agenda?
Given all of this, it is perfectly reasonable for citizens everywhere to question our governments when it comes to a vaccine. The ubiquitous presence of Bill Gates on every TV everywhere in the world is enough to make us question whether our government is listening to the right people. Gates thinks the whole world should be vaccinated and shouldn’t be allowed to leave home without it. Bill Gates is a pivotal figure given his profound influence. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is now the largest donor to the WHO and deeply involved in nearly all the organizations proposing the global vaccine agenda, including GAVI and CEPI, and is invested in the companies making the vaccines. He is therefore either deified or despised, depending on your position. His work in this and many other areas has been described as “philanthrocapitalism,” using the cover of an NGO to wield great influence and make money in the process. It could be described as “to give in order that you shall receive.” It is cause for great concern and is now being widely critiqued. However, he was warmly welcomed to London by Boris Johnson in June for the vaccine summit. Neil Ferguson from Imperial College, famed for being wrong with his modelling forecasts for COVID19 has benefitted from Gates’ largess as has Dr Chris Whitty, the UK Chief Medical Officer. Many other UK and US health experts and government spokespeople have benefitted from Gates Foundation money. It is a long list. Sir Patrick Vallance, UK Chief Health Officer was on the board of one of the largest vaccine manufacturers for over ten years, GlaxoSmithKline, which was also funded by the Gates Foundation. During the time he was with the company it was found guilty of fraud with U.S authorities, leading to fines in the billions of dollars. The company also had to pay out over £60 million for damages in the UK from its swine flu vaccine in 2009 after it produced cases of narcolepsy and catalepsy. The company paid the fine but because it had indemnity from the government, it will get the money back. In the USA, the head of the government’s “Operation Warp Speed” to find a vaccine is Dr Moncef Slaoui, also a former executive with GlaxoSmithKline.
This relationship between government and the vaccine industry is partly unavoidable in the revolving door between business and government. However, given the extraordinary situation we are in and the pressure on governments to do the right thing, they are going to listen to those people who they think know what they are doing. However, the fact is that the relationship now between government and the pharmaceutical industry is simply too close. Can we really trust those who are embedded in the vaccine industry to think that there is any other solution but to find a vaccine and to give it to global population. Are they really going to look at the evidence and say, well, actually, maybe a vaccine isn’t needed now as COVID19 isn’t as lethal as we first thought?
But the drama continues in looking at all the options, including the possible use of hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) as a cheap and effective alternative to a vaccine or other expensive anti-viral medications. The WHO, Gates Foundation, governments and drug companies seem to be doing everything they can to suppress its use, from actually banning it, suppressing and censoring discussion about it and producing flawed and badly designed research. The Lancet and New England Journal of Medicine had to retract their published study showing that HCQ did not work when the evidence used was fatally flawed, with much egg on their faces. This led famed French expert in the use of HCQ, Dr Didier Raoult to roundly criticize the sloppy research. Dr Raoult’s own work with HCQ has even been suppressed in France. It doesn’t end there. The WHO, Gates Foundation, Wellcome Trust and others embarked on another two trials but both used toxic and lethal doses of HCQ, leading to some deaths and subsequent cancellation of the trials. Was this deliberate or just a mistake? The evidence is there to investigate but the silence in the mainstream media is deafening. However, individual doctors are refusing to be silenced, from “America’s Frontline Doctors” who were immediately censored on social media to other sincere doctors working on the frontlines. So who benefits? One alternative to the use of HCQ is the anti-viral drug Remdesivir, that has shown a somewhat marginal effect in treating COVID19 but enough for Dr Fauci to advocate for its use while condemning the use of HCQ, contradicting his own Commander in Chief. No matter, there are bigger stakes here it seems. Remdesivir is made by Gilead Sciences Inc and is the biggest pharmaceutical donator to the World Health Organization. Whereas HCQ can cost in the range of $60 per patient, Remdesivir goes for $3,200. Quite a difference.
We have to realize that the potential money involved is huge. There are massive profits to be made for a successful vaccine. Imagining being able to vaccinate everybody on the planet, forever! A yearly flu vaccine(s) for everybody. Bill Gates recently even said people may need multiple doses of a vaccine! The vaccine industry is seen as a growth industry for Big Pharma. Various companies have many potential new vaccines being planned and especially if new technology allows them to be made more quickly and cheaply, the temptation is huge. As patents run out on profitable drugs, it is way cheaper to produce vaccines – especially with government subsidies as now – than to produce new drugs. Vaccines for adults, especially if mandatory and protected from indemnity by the government is a perfect situation for them. Let’s not be naïve and think that profit is not a large incentive here.
It is beholden on people everywhere to understand what is happening and insist on being able to make their own choices in this matter and not to be coerced by the government and the interests of Big Pharma. There is too much at stake to put all one’s trust in the government. It is time people trust themselves. Many governments worldwide have deeply compromised the democratic rights of their people by imposing a one size fits all solution to the COVID19 crisis, seriously infringing fundamental civil liberties in the process.
The UNESCO Universal Declaration on Bioethics and Human Rights (2005) states: “Any preventive, diagnostic and therapeutic medical intervention is only to be carried out with the prior, free and informed consent of the person concerned, based on adequate information.” It should not be dismissed lightly.