Scotland extends lockdown until end of February, announces ‘managed quarantine’ for all international arrivals
RT – The Scottish first minister has extended the nation’s lockdown amid severe pressure on the NHS and says the country will bring in new measures to prevent potentially harmful variants entering Scotland from abroad.
The latest data shows that there has been “real progress” in bringing Covid-19 case numbers down, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon told lawmakers on Tuesday, but she also issued words of caution. “The situation does continue to remain fragile…The risk is increased as the new variant accounts for 73 percent of new cases,” she noted.
Pressure on the NHS is severe, she added, noting that the number of people in hospital is still 30 percent higher than during the first peak of the pandemic in Scotland.
Lockdown will now be extended in full until the end of the month, although Sturgeon said some primary schools may open for young students on February 22. School reopening plans are set to be reviewed in two weeks and would see the phased resuming of education.
BBC – The Kent variant of coronavirus that has been spreading in the UK appears to be undergoing some ‘worrying’ new genetic changes, say scientists.
Tests on some samples show a mutation, called E484K, already seen in the South Africa and Brazil variants that are of concern.
Although this change may reduce vaccine effectiveness, the current ones in use should still work, say experts.
The UK has already stepped up measures to control the spread of new variants.
Urgent testing for the South Africa variant is starting in parts of England and travel restrictions have been introduced to stop more cases entering from abroad.
Experts working with Public Health England found a small number of cases of the UK variant with the E484K mutation – it was seen in 11 out of 214,159 samples that they tested, and predominantly from the South West of England.
It’s not unexpected that variants are appearing or that they will continue to change – all viruses mutate as they make new copies of themselves to spread and thrive.
Breitbart – Poland’s new Freedom Act against Big Tech censorship will see members of the public automatically notified of “shadowbans” and empowered to overturn restrictions if their speech online is lawful.
Speaking exclusively to Breitbart News, Deputy Minister of Justice Sebastian Kaleta, who is spearheading the new legislation, confirmed that “every time an algorithm is used to limit reach, the user will be informed if and why his reach is being limited.”
The Polish government has previously confirmed that its new laws against tech censorship will give Polish citizens a statutory right to appeal against bans and content removal if their speech was lawful under the Polish constitution, with a new Free Speech Board able to order tech firms to restore removed accounts and content on pain of huge fines.
Some tech censorship is more insidious, however, with Silicon Valley drastically curtailing some users’ reach and ability to build a following — sometimes openly, sometimes not — through so-called “shadowbans”, without ever outright banning them or deleting content.
Kaleta told Breitbart London that “the process of using algorithms to suppress particular views, as long as they do not break Polish law, [will] be regulated” and that “if social media platforms break this law, they will be fined.”
Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s government in Hungary has also confirmed that it will be taking action to prevent the shadowbanning of “Christian, conservative, [and] right-wing” voices online.
While some right-wingers have been reluctant to call on elected officials to secure their right to speak freely on platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube because they are “private companies”, Kaleta was clear that, for the Law and Justice Party (PiS) government in Poland, the provision of state protection of people’s right to freedom of expression online was merely part of the “civilisational process”.
“Since we have laws regarding banking, telecommunications, the armaments industry, and many other fields, we should also regulate Big Tech,” he insisted, pointing out that social media platforms “provide a concrete service, that is the ability to communicate on a large scale” and compared them to public utilities like telephone companies.
“The owners of social media companies are not running just any business. The Big Tech companies are now monopolies,” he said.
“I mean, imagine if Alexander Graham Bell were to decide who can speak through the telephone and Thomas Edison decided where lightbulbs were to be used?” he asked.
Christian Science Monitor – Aung San Suu Kyi and other elected officials in Myanmar’s National League for Democracy party were detained under house arrest, and communications were cut to the capital.
Military leaders took over Myanmar in a coup early Monday as State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi was detained under house arrest, reports said, and communications were cut to the capital.
Later, Myanmar military television said the military has taken control of the country for one year. The military assigned Vice President Myint Swe, a former military officer, as head of the government for one year. Immediately after he was named president, Mr. Myint Swe handed power to the country’s top military commander, Senior Gen. Min Aung Hlaing.
A party official with Ms. Aung San Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy party told the Washington Post that other leaders of the ruling party were also detained in what appeared to be a coup.
U.S. News, Politics & Government
The trial is scheduled to begin Feb. 9
Fox – Sen. Lindsey Graham, the outgoing chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, told Fox News Monday night that if Democrats call one witness during former President Trump’s impeachment trial next week, they would be “opening a can of worms” and Republicans will respond by calling in the FBI to testify.
The 50-50 Senate is preparing for another trial that many Republicans say will serve no purpose other than to further divide the country. They say Democrats want nothing more than to score political points with the trial and get one last parting shot in against Trump.
Democrats, on the other hand, say Trump needs to be held responsible for the deadly riot at the Capitol last month. They want to convict Trump on one count of “incitement of insurrection.”
Reuters reported that House Democrats will be prosecuting the case in the Senate and are expected to announce as early as Tuesday whether or not they will call witnesses. Graham, who pointed out that no witnesses were called in the House impeachment, said that if Democrats call “one witness” they better get ready for a long trial.
“If you open that can of worms, we’ll want the FBI to come in and tell us about how people pre-planned this attack and what happened with the security footprint at the Capitol. You open up Pandora’s Box if you call one witness,” he said.
“This process is completely unconstitutional and it is a very, very dangerous road to take with respect to the First Amendment, putting at risk any passionate political speaker which is really against everything we believe and in this country,” he said.
Trump aides have made clear that they intend to make a simple argument in the trial: Trump’s trial is unconstitutional because he is no longer in office.
CNN – President Joe Biden will sign three executive orders Tuesday that take aim at his predecessor’s hardline immigration policies and try to rectify the consequences of those policies, including by establishing a task force designed to reunite families separated at the US-Mexico border, according to senior administration officials.
The latest orders build upon the actions taken in Biden’s first days in office and begin to provide a clearer picture of the administration’s immigration priorities.
FNC’s Carlson: Democrats ‘Think It Is Fine to Mobilize the Army in Order to Put Down Domestic Opinions’
Breitbart – Monday, Fox News Channel host Tucker Carlson opened his program questioning the military presence in Washington, D.C., around the U.S. Capitol.
He pointed to some Democrats, who have justified the use of National Guard troops as a means to combat political opinions, as a cause for concern.
Breitbart – President Joe Biden is expected to OK the entry of tens of thousands of foreign graduates to fill the Fortune 500 jobs needed by his college voters when he ends President Donald Trump’s June 2020 migration curbs.
On Tuesday, Biden is expected to sign executive orders that will “rescind the Trump proclamations that precluded the admission of immigrants and non-immigrants either deemed to be a financial burden on our health care system or deemed to present a risk to U.S. labor markets,” a Biden deputy said, according to a January 29 report by CBS.
Economy & Business
WSJ – The momentum against GameStop picked up early Tuesday, with shares trading down more than 40% after a big drop Monday. Other once-hot stocks–AMC, Koss, Express– also fell sharply, while silver also took a leg down, dropping after the CME slapped additional margin requirements on traders.
The broader market, meanwhile, is up. There are lots of fresh stories that break down the latest moves and explain what is driving markets. Some highlights:
- A WSJ primer on GameStop, Reddit and Robinhood. To get more in-depth, read this Q&A on stock clearinghouses and this explanation of what the moves mean for Wall Street. And here’s advice if you are thinking of buying GameStop for fun.
- Short-selling positions in GameStop, AMC and other Robinhood favorites are declining rapidly.
- A GameStop congressional hearing is planned for Feb. 18.
- All the market drama is heading for Netflix and the silver screen.
- The people behind the GameStop rally: The investors who bought GameStop before it was cool. Here’s the man who created Reddit’s WallStreetBets. And Meet Keith Gill, a.k.a. “DeepF—ingValue.”
Energy & Environment
CNN – Brace yourself for six more weeks of winter.
That is, if you like to get your weather prediction from a groundhog in Pennsylvania.
Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow Tuesday morning and, as legend holds, that means six additional weeks of heavy coats and mittens.
Phil was awakened at 7:25 a.m. and made his prediction in front of about 16 members of the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club at Gobbler’s Knob.
“Now, when I turn to see, there’s a perfect shadow cast of me. Six more weeks of winter there will be,” one of Phil’s handlers announced on his behalf at the ceremony.
The celebration, which is over a century old, looked a little different this year. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, there were no crowds in attendance or guests present. It was streamed live.
CBS – A winter storm is impacting nearly 70 million Americans, pummeling major cities with snow, including New York City, Philadelphia and Boston. The storm warnings currently stretch from northern Georgia to Maine.
So far, northern and central New Jersey have already been hit with nearly 2 feet of snow and another foot could fall by Tuesday evening.
Heavy snow, gusts topping 60 mph and white-out conditions have caused numerous accidents and grounded more than 1,600 from Washington, D.C., to Boston. The storm has also knocked out power and forced COVID-19 vaccination sites to shut down across D.C., Philadelphia, New York, New Jersey, Rhode Island, Connecticut and Massachusetts.
Science & Technology
‘Cancel Culture is barreling down the track like a runaway train on a mountain pass’
WND – It’s not just President Trump and the MyPillow guy Mike Lindell who are facing the wrath of Twitter in recent days.
Now, the social-media giant has suspended Focus on the Family, an influential Christian-based family organization.
The supposed crime? Its “Daily Citizen” publication stated factual information regarding the biological sex of Rachel Levine, President Biden’s assistant secretary for health at the Department of Health and Human Services.
“As I’ve noted before, Big Tech titans are the new emperors of the twenty-first century, wielding an inordinate amount of power by silencing individuals and organizations that don’t comport or cave to their political or social point of view,” wrote Jim Daly, president of Focus on the Family.
“This past week, Twitter locked The Daily Citizen for an alleged rules violation, specifically that we had posted ‘hateful’ content. It’s simply not true. We did no such thing,” he continued.
At issue was a Tweet pointing to a story about Dr. Rachel Levine, President Biden’s controversial nominee for Assistant Secretary for Health at the Department of Health and Human Services.
The tweet included the following sentence:
“Dr. Levine is a transgender woman, that is, a man who believes he is a woman.”
It seems, according to Twitter, simply acknowledging biological fact is now “hateful.”
As we noted to Twitter in our appeal (we have since been denied), we were deeply puzzled as to why we’re not permitted to simply acknowledge the definition of what transgender women are – those born male who believe they are a woman, regardless of whether they have had opposite-sex hormones or surgeries.
The article itself had absolutely nothing to do with Dr. Levine’s “trans” identification. It had to do with his fitness for the job based on his previous record.
We’ve asked Twitter to explain what was wrong with our wording and even asked them how we might describe Dr. Levine to their liking. At this writing, we haven’t heard back.
Over the course of the last week, President Biden has been stressing the need for unity – but his actions since taking office are all about demanding uniformity. There appears to be no room for convictional disagreement.
You will comply – or be silenced.
The “Cancel Culture” is barreling down the track like a runaway train on a mountain pass, threatening to run over anyone in its path.
Daly also provided a list of other individuals whose free-speech rights have been pummeled online recently.
- Curt Schilling – had his insurance dropped by AIG; may not make Hall of Fame today because of statements supporting conservative causes
- Brandon Eich – Mozilla CEO, ousted after it was discovered he’d privately given money in support of California’s anti-gay marriage referendum in the past
- Martina Navratilova – thrown off LGBT advocacy board and loses speaking engagements and documentary after arguing that transgender male athletes shouldn’t be able to compete in women’s sports
- J.K. Rowling – prevented from getting last book published because of tweets making distinctions between the sexes
- Ariel Pink dropped from record label for attending Trump rally, not to mention all of the people who have been fired from jobs for attending the January 6 rally, regardless of whether they even came near the Capitol
- CrossFit founder Greg Glassman forced to sell company after making remarks critical of the rioting last year
“It goes on and on. And we’re only at the beginning of a coordinated effort to silence those of us with socially conservative convictions,” Daly said. “Please be in prayer for us as we navigate this cultural maelstrom. In reality, this tension over free speech and religious liberty have existed from the earliest days of the country – but it’s exacerbated and magnified in this post-Christian era.”
Activist Post – The future of total police surveillance just got a whole lot bleaker, thanks to researchers at the Indian Institute of Science (IISc). IISc researchers have figured out a way to turn a vast network of CCTV cameras into one massive surveillance network, which can target a specific vehicle or person.
Anveshak, the Hindi word for “investigator” gives law enforcement the ability to overlap the camera feeds from a thousand CCTV cameras to track an individual person[s].
Anveshak has the big-picture ability to know the locations and overlap points of 1,000 camera feeds, as well as possible paths an object (such as a stolen car) or person could take through those feeds, critical details in limiting what would otherwise be an unfathomably large quantity of video data coming from multiple cameras.
The Anveshak platform will let police use CCTV cameras to track or “spotlight” a person through blindspots.
The system creates a spotlight on the tracked subject, dynamically adjusting the size of that spotlight based on known gaps in camera coverage; for example, four cameras might be monitored for the subject’s arrival in situations of ambiguity, decreasing to only two cameras where their coverage is better and the subject’s route more obvious.
The IISc’s attempt at explaining how law enforcement can use it to track missing people is really just a veiled attempt at showing governments how police could use the Anveshak platform to ID and track people of interest.
The spotlight algorithm narrows the search space for analyzing video feeds if the missing person is found within a camera’s field of view. It gradually expands the set of video feeds analyzed when the person falls in a blindspot between cameras. This intelligence helps reduce the computation required for analyzing videos from thousands of cameras while not sacrificing accuracy.
The “spotlight” AI algorithm is unlike anything we have seen before.
Anveshak will allow law enforcement to use a vast network of public and private surveillance cameras to track an individual persons movement’s between blindspots.
The IISc calls Anveshak “a software platform for smart video tracking”.
Researchers at the IISc have developed a novel software platform from which apps and algorithms can intelligently track and analyze video feeds from cameras spread across cities. Such analysis is not only useful for tracking missing persons or objects, but also for “smart city” initiatives such as automated traffic control.
Don’t be fooled by IISc’s claims that law enforcement will only use Anveshak to track stolen cars or missing persons.
As history has shown, police have used smart AI to identify and track people of interest like Occupy Wall St. and Black Lives Matter protesters.
Ukraine in space! Despite desperate financial situation & need for Western aid, deputy PM says country must launch own spacecraft
RT – Though policymakers in Kiev are embroiled in a bitter row over the constitution and access to Covid-19 jabs, the country’s deputy prime minister says Ukrainians should be setting their sights firmly on a voyage to the stars.
“We have a paradox on our hands,” said Oleg Urusky, who also holds the role of strategic industries minister, in a post on Facebook on Monday. “Ukraine has huge scientific and technical potential to launch its own fleet of spacecraft in near-Earth orbit but, unfortunately, we don’t have one… This situation needs to change.”
He added that, on the same day, the government held a meeting on the creation of a Ukrainian space program “for high-resolution remote sensing” with developers, as well as with potential customers seeking to access satellite services.
While Ukraine has a State Space Agency which receives $80 million a year in funding, it has no history of manned space flights. Much of its work is built on the Soviet-era legacy of aeronautical engineering, based around the area of the Dnieper. In the days of the USSR, it was known as ‘Rocket City’ for its role in manufacturing launch vehicles. However, Ukraine does not have a spaceport of its own and, until the 2014 Maidan, de
Activist Post – The storming of the Red Fort in Delhi on January 26 marked an escalation of tensions between the Indian government – led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi – and farmers who have been protesting against agricultural reforms since August 2020.
With footage of the farmers clashing with police going viral, the Red Fort incident also marked a spike in interest in the farmers’ movement around the world, much to Modi’s embarrassment.
The authorities’ response to events at the Red Fort – a historic building symbolic of Indian independence, and located in the very heart of Old Delhi – was swift. Delhi Police shut down the city’s internet, affecting more than 52 million mobile phone subscribers. The shutdown was ostensibly in the interest of public safety, but it’s also the latest episode in India’s long-running story of heavy-handed internet crackdowns – a strategy used time and again to quell swelling protest movements.
India’s control over the internet is comparable to some of the world’s most authoritarian countries. While India ranks second in the world in terms of mobile internet subscribers, the country also leads in shutdowns. They’re used with alarming regularity to disrupt protest movements and – in the case of Kashmir, currently under the world’s longest internet shutdown – to control entire populations.
During the Citizen Act protests last year, shutdowns were used in Aligarh – home to the Aligarh Muslim University – one of the hubs of the protests, where severe police brutality is alleged to have taken place. The Indian government implemented more than 106 internet shutdowns in 2019 alone – the vast majority in response to protests.
This control is largely achieved via the Temporary Suspension of Telecom Services (Public Emergency or Public Safety) Rules, passed into law in 2017, which expanded the government’s powers for surveillance and connectivity suspension, empowering it to control dissent and opposition.
In Kashmir, where there are tight restrictions on the rights to free expression, speech and assembly, internet shutdowns function as an “invisibility cloak” to crack down on dissent and isolate Kashmiris from the rest of the world. Because India’s supreme court has ruled that “indefinite internet shutdowns” are illegal, India’s government instead downgrades or “throttles” Kashmir’s mobile connectivity from 4G to 2G, seriously limiting what can be loaded on phones.
Tractors and tear gas
The recent events at the Red Fort also presented an example of India’s disinformation ecosystem. At a pivotal moment, some protesters raised a flag sacred to Sikhs next to the Indian flag, even as movement leaders pleaded with them to climb down. Hundreds of cameras caught the moment the flags where raised, uploading photos to social media.
These images were immediately seized upon by social media influencers loyal to Modi, who began a disinformation campaign which spread across the country, claiming the flag to be that of Khalistani separatists. In Modi’s India, separatists are often depicted as enemies of the state.
Disinformation spreads particularly quickly in India, where mobile internet packages make it cheaper to access social media than to run a Google search. This lack of “net neutrality” – favouring traffic to certain websites over others – discourages users from fact-checking what they see on social media.In response to the fast-spreading flag disinformation, social media activists sympathetic to the farmers were quick to point out that the flag was the Sikh “Nishan Sahib”. They showed how the same flag is flown at all Sikh gurudwaras, used by regiments of the Indian army, and had even been sported by Modi while he campaigned in Punjab. It’s unclear how successful these efforts to neutralise “fake news” have been in a country with powerful state-backed media companies.
Television anchors on state-backed news channels regularly tarnish protesting farmers as Khalistani separatists, Pakistani spies, members of the opposition Congress party, or communists. Using abusive words such as “behuda” (impudent), “badtameez” (ill-mannered), and “gunda” (goons), these anchors are aware that their language will inflame passions when cut into shorter clips for social media. These images achieve virality on WhatsApp and Facebook via common channels of circulation, drumming up support for the state’s crackdowns on dissent.
As with the flag dispute, India’s activists also know how to use the digital space to achieve their objectives. They post videos, release their own memes and hashtags, and are particularly strong at satire, humour, music and art.
By positioning cameras at key protest sites, clashes are recorded and live-streamed on social media, capturing alleged police brutality and heightening the pitch of public debate. Unfortunately, such tactics are often nullified by the state’s common default to full internet shutdowns.
And in a further move to shut down dissent, the government recently reportedly sent a legal notice to Twitter that led to the blocking of several accounts linked to the farmers’ protest – revealing the Modi administration’s ability to censor groups and individuals on specific platforms, too.
Beyond signalling the authoritarian drift of the “world’s largest democracy”, India’s internet shutdowns are also expensive affairs. Even as Modi promises to build a “digital India” to boost the country’s economy, his internet shutdowns are costing India US$2.8 billion (£2 billion) a year – which equates to 70% of the global cost of shutting off the internet in 2020. That he is willing to foot this bill is indicative of how much is at stake for Modi. It is time for the world to take notice.
Well+Good – If one of your health goals is to live a long, healthy life (and whose isn’t, really), your kitchen may already be stocked with longevity-boosting foods. Frozen blueberries in the freezer, beans in the pantry, leafy greens in the crisper…they are all linked to adding years to your life. But what about when it comes to what to drink?
While you might guess red wine (it is a beloved beverage in moderation among Blue Zones-dwelling Italians), functional medicine doctor and The Pegan Diet ($22) author Mark, Hyman, MD, says the best drink for longevity is actually green tea. “Tea is a super beverage that contains potent phenolic compounds that fight cancer and protect our cardiovascular system. Green tea is in a class by itself, rich in catechins, some of the most powerful disease-fighting phytonutrients found in the plant kingdom,” he says.
By protecting against both cancer and cardiovascular diseases, drinking green tea regularly is directly linked to living a long, healthy life. An older review of studies found a correlation between green tea consumption and a decreased number of cardiovascular health problems in Southeast Asian countries; a 2018 study also found that regular tea drinkers have a reduced risk of age-related decreases of high-density lipoprotein (aka “good” cholesterol), with green tea having a slightly stronger effect than black tea. Green tea’s EGCGs (a type of beneficial catechin particularly prevalent in the tea) have also been shown to inhibit tumor growth.
Dr. Hyman says green tea is also good for the gut. “There are certain beneficial gut bugs that feed on foods rich in polyphenols, including green tea,” he says. He explains that one of these beneficial gut bugs is called akkermansia muciniphila, which supports the protective mucus layer that prevents a leaky gut by keeping gut lining strong. “Low levels of this critical bacteria have been linked to autoimmune disease, obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and even cancer,” Dr. Hyman says.
In addition to being good for the heart and gut, green tea is also good for the brain. Registered dietitian Neva Cochran, RD, previously told Well+Good that this is because of the drink’s caffeine and catechins. “Catechins help protect the body from free radicals. This benefits the whole body and of course the brain as well,” she says.
Death rates from alcohol reach new high in England and Wales in the first 9 months of 2020, new figures show
RT – More people have died in England and Wales from drinking alcohol during the first three quarters of 2020 than at any other time in the past two decades, according to records kept by the UK’s Office of National Statistics (ONS).
In a new report released on Tuesday, the ONS found that alcohol was a contributing factor in 5,460 deaths in England and Wales between January and September – a 17-percent increase on booze-related fatalities over the same period of the year before.
In 2019, there were 11 deaths per 100,000. That rate increased to 12.8 in 2020.
Julie Breslin from the drug, alcohol and mental health charity ‘We Are With You’ said the increase in drinking deaths was related to the coronavirus restrictions in the UK, which have prevented people from meeting their usual support network, such as family, or accessing addiction resources.
“Our research showed that at the end of last year more than one in two over-50s were drinking at a level that could cause health problems now or in the future, with nearly one in four classed as high risk or possibly dependent,” Breslin said.
The ONS report noted that alcohol-related deaths are normally higher during the first quarter of each year. In 2020, however, the high death rates seen in the early months of the year were sustained in the following two quarters. The agency first started tracking alcohol-linked deaths in 2001.
WND – China, the World Health Organization and the U.S. National Institutes of Health have dimissed the theory that the virus causing the global pandemic that has killed more than 2 million people and devastated economies worldwide escaped from the Wuhan, China, lab funded by the United States.
But there’s no disputing the fact, as Newsweek reported in April 2020, that NIH executive Dr. Anthony Fauci promoted a highly controversial type of research involving the manipulation of viruses to explore their potential for infecting humans. And it’s known that more than 200 scientists pressured the Obama administration in 2014 to temporarily halt U.S. funding for that research because of the risk of a manipulated virus accidentally escaping a lab and igniting a pandemic. Nevertheless, under Fauci’s direction, the dangerous virus engineering resumed in 2017 and continued until April 2020.
Now, documentary evidence makes it a “near certainty” that the coronavirus pandemic originated in the Wuhan Institute of Virology in China, where so-called “gain-of-function” research was funded by Fauci’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, according to Steve Hilton, who is leading a special investigation for his Fox News show “The Next Revolution.”
Significantly, his investigation found a direct link between a bat coronavirus discovered a decade ago in a mine in Yunnan province and one that had been engineered in the Wuhan lab, 1,000 miles away.
Hilton noted on his show Sunday night that scientists at the Wuhan lab published a paper in February 2020 stating they had recently discovered a virus in Yunnan province that “showed high sequence identity” to COVID-19.
However, Hilton discovered after running the virus’s genome sequence through the NIH’s GenBank database that only one virus was an exact match to COVID-19. It wasn’t the virus discovered recently. It was the once discovered a decade ago in Yunnan province that killed miners who had stirred up bat feces.
Hilton found it curious that the Wuhan researchers not only didn’t reveal that fact, they changed the name of the Yunnan virus, as indicated by GenBank.
As evidence that the Yunnan virus was manipulated in the Wuhan lab, Hilton pointed out that the two viruses are the same, except for two key elements: The COVID-19 virus is more infectious and can enter human cells in the respiratory system.
“Those are the exact places in the viral sequence where gain-of-function techniques would be applied, if … you were funded by the NAID to research bat coronaviruses to explore emergences or spillover potential,” he said.
“Spillover potential” refers to the ability of a virus to jump from animals to humans.
That exact gain-of-function research, he pointed out, was touted in a Nov. 30, 2017, progress report tied to an NAID grant.
The crucial question, Hilton said, was whether the virus at the center of that U.S.-funded work was the one that was discovered in the mine a decade ago.
“The match between that virus and the work commissioned by NAID is so perfect, it’s impossible to believe they weren’t,” he said.
He noted that workers in the Wuhan lab were the first identified cases of COVID-19 in the fall of 2019.
CNN – Even for those who have been infected with Covid-19, there is a “very high rate” of re-infection if the new variants become dominant, Dr. Anthony Fauci said Monday.
Health experts have identified at least three coronavirus variants in the US that appeared to originate in the UK, South Africa and Brazil. While the average case rate in the US has declined lately, officials are concerned these variants could fuel another surge.
Fauci, the director of the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Disease, told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer that health experts in South Africa have seen that the variant there has such a high rate of reinfection that previous infection did not appear to protect people.
The threat of reinfection comes after the deadliest month of the pandemic. More than 1 in 5 coronavirus deaths were reported in January, equaling 95,000 in all, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.
Green Med Info – Thiamin may be the missing link to treating autoimmune disease and autonomic dysfunction. Although deficiencies in this vitamin have long been considered eradicated, case studies show supplementation with this nutrient improves fatigue in autoimmune patients in a matter of hours to days
One of the common threads uniting disparate autoimmune disease labels, irrespective of diagnosis, is the debilitating fatigue that plagues patients. Although methylated B vitamins have been given ample fanfare, vitamin B1, or thiamin, has garnered far less attention in communities that emphasize the holistic management of autoimmune disease.
Functions of Thiamin
One of eight essential B vitamins, thiamin is a water-soluble vitamin that functions in the conversion of food into energy (1). The active form of thiamin, known as thiamin pyrophosphate or thiamin diphosphate, is an essential cofactor in both the citric acid cycle and pentose phosphate pathway, two enzyme-mediated pathways of carbohydrate metabolism (1). The citric acid cycle, for example, also known as the Kreb’s cycle, is a central metabolic pathway in the mitochondria that participates in the oxidative degradation of monosaccharides and other nutrients, which generates cellular energy currency in the form of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) to be used in a myriad of energy-demanding cellular reactions (1).
Inhibition of the two main enzymes of the Kreb’s cycle for which thiamin is a cofactor, pyruvate dehydrogenase complex (PDH) and alpha-ketoglutarate dehydrogenase (alpha-KGDH), leads to decreased brain levels of ATP (1). Suppression of brain ATP levels impairs degradation of dopamine in the prefrontal cortex, disrupts synthesis of the nerve-insulating myelin sheath, prevents production of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, and reduces levels of the major inhibitory neurotransmitter gamma aminobutyric acid (GABA), which collectively leads to delirium, delusions, hallucinations, and cognitive impairment (1).
The transketolase enzyme of the cytosol-based pentose phosphate pathway (PPP), on the other hand, also requires thiamin as a cofactor (1). Transketolase converts glucose-6-phosphate into both ribose-5-phosphate and reduced nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate (NADPH), the latter of which is required to donate hydrogen atoms in chemical reactions that produce particular neurotransmitters, steroids, amino acids, fatty acids, and the master antioxidant of the body, glutathione (1). Given its centrality to these biochemical pathways which generate energy for the entire organism, the effects of thiamin deficiency are all-encompassing.
7 Dead and 100% of Residents Infected in Spanish Nursing Home After Being Injected with Experimental Pfizer mRNA COVID Shots
Health Impact News – Comments by Brian Shilhavy
Editor, Health Impact News
In what is becoming a very familiar story all across the world, 7 residents in a nursing home in central Spain have died just after being injected with the experimental Pfizer mRNA COVID shots.
RT.com is reporting that all 78 residents and 12 staff are now testing positive for COVID-19 after receiving the injections, while prior to the injections the nursing home had reportedly been “virus-free” during the previous “waves” of COVID-19.
How long will the world’s elderly population continue being killed in mass by an experimental medical product that is now not only linked to serious injuries and deaths, but also to outbreaks of COVID-19 which world Governments and Health Agencies continue to state is impossible with the mRNA infections?
Dissenting doctors and scientists have been warning for months that these experimental shots are dangerous, and that people should not volunteer to receive them because previous studies on mRNA vaccines conducted on animals have been fatal, and this is the first large-scale mass “vaccination” trial ever conducted on humans, and it is only possible due to “emergency use authorization” to fight the COVID “pandemic.”
7 die at Spanish care home after getting Pfizer Covid-19 jab as ALL residents test positive for virus, second doses still to come
All 78 residents at a nursing home in central Spain have tested positive for Covid-19 after being given their first dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, and at least seven people have died, staff confirmed on Monday.
Most of those who succumbed to the virus had existing conditions, according to Spanish news agency EFE, while four residents are currently hospitalized, and 12 staff have also been infected.
The huge outbreak is at the Lagartera Residence for the Elderly in the Toledo area, southwest of the capital Madrid.
The home’s 33 staff must now present a negative PCR test before they start work, and a spokesperson said that health measures to contain the spread of the virus are in place “at all times.”
“On January 13, all residents, including nursing home staff, were vaccinated with the first dose of the Pfizer vaccine, and after six days the first symptoms began to appear in ten of the residents,” they said in a statement.
Some members of staff began to go off sick with the virus five days after being inoculated.
On January 21, management approved the decision to test all residents of the home and quarantine them to their rooms, with families informed of the move.
The testing results, on January 25, showed that all the residents had caught the virus apart from one, who then also tested positive at a later date.
In December, Spain’s Supreme Court ordered an investigation into deaths at nursing homes, which were a disturbing feature of the early pandemic, making up 69 percent of all Covid-19 fatalities between April 6 and June 20.
The Lagartera Residence for the Elderly insisted the current outbreak was its first of the pandemic, having remained virus-free during the first two waves of infections.
The next doses of the vaccine are to be administered at the home on February 3, and the next round of PCR tests will be carried out on February 5.
Read the full article at RT.com.