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Debunking Nicholas Wade’s Origin of COVID Conspiracy Theory

Summary:
It seems that Nicholas Wade is playing politics and spreading propaganda rather than doing science. Despite Wade’s journalistic pedigree, close reading of his latest essay on the origins of COVID-19 reveals a poor adherence to reporting standards, investigatory lapses and major biases, and insistent mis-representation or outright falsehoods, leading to erroneous and unsupportable conclusions. Wade concocted a story of false improbabilities — he arbitrarily states conditions: “What if the bat viruses infected some intermediate host first? You would need a longstanding population of bats in frequent proximity with an intermediate host…”. No. Are there well-established conditions for spillover of virus from bats into other species? Where does Wade get the condition that a longstanding

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It seems that Nicholas Wade is playing politics and spreading propaganda rather than doing science. 


Despite Wade’s journalistic pedigree, close reading of his latest essay on the origins of COVID-19 reveals a poor adherence to reporting standards, investigatory lapses and major biases, and insistent mis-representation or outright falsehoods, leading to erroneous and unsupportable conclusions. 


Wade concocted a story of false improbabilities — he arbitrarily states conditions: “What if the bat viruses infected some intermediate host first? You would need a longstanding population of bats in frequent proximity with an intermediate host…”. No. Are there well-established conditions for spillover of virus from bats into other species? Where does Wade get the condition that a longstanding population of bats must be in frequent proximity with the host? Is that a known requirement? Says who? Must there be frequent proximity? Must the infected intermediate host often cross paths with humans? Who says? Wade?

Why MUST these virus exchanges in an intermediate host be outside Wuhan? The first SARS began in a city — Foshan in Guangdong province, originated in bats, and through a civet intermediate before spreading in humans with high mortality (10%).

It took 15 years after SARS1 to identify the animal origin of that pandemic. The lack of clear evidence of a natural origin for SARS2 is NOT a strike against that hypothesis — lack of data is only that — a lack of data.

The SARS1 pandemic was in 2002–3, and Shi was unable to identify the bats from which it originated, and passed through civets to humans, until 2013. And it wasn’t until 2017 that scientists identified the single population of bats from which the first SARS virus originated.

So, pointing to the knowledge of SARS1 now, and the lack of similar knowledge for SARS2 is highly deceptive and misleading.


Debunking Nicholas Wade’s Origin of COVID Conspiracy Theory

Mike Norman
Mike Norman is an economist and veteran trader whose career has spanned over 30 years on Wall Street. He is a former member and trader on the CME, NYMEX, COMEX and NYFE and he managed money for one of the largest hedge funds and ran a prop trading desk for Credit Suisse.

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