Rueters investigative team of Squibley and Bushwhacker went deep into the heart of Wuhan to uncover startling proof the Chinese can really fuck things up, making them seem, well, like regular folks; don’t expect their government to admit the unvarnished truth about how an ambitious attempt to create a new cookbook with bat-based recipes for their picky countrymen went horribly, horribly wrong
May 30, 2021
By Andrew Squibley and Arthur Bushwhacker, Voted To Kill Independent Commission To Investigate Their Reporting
“Democracy Dies In Darkness…And It Isn’t Looking So Great In Florida, Georgia And Texas, Either”
WASHINGTON (Rueters) — President Joe Biden has ordered U.S. intelligence officials to ramp up efforts to determine the origins of the Covid-19 pandemic, including any possibility the trail might lead to a Chinese laboratory. But a two-month investigation by Rueters has uncovered the bizarre truth of how a seemingly great idea for China’s household cooks turned into a global catastrophe.
After months of minimizing the possibility of a lab-leak as a fringe theory, the Biden administration is joining worldwide pressure for China to be more open about the outbreak, aiming to head off GOP complaints the president has not been tough enough as well as to use the opportunity to press China on alleged obstruction.
At the center of the controversy is Dr. Shi Zhengli, director of the Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases at China’s globally renowned Wuhan Institute of Virology and Haute Cuisine.
In her first interview with a western news agency about the origins of the Covid-19 pandemic which has claimed more than 3 million lives worldwide, the reclusive scientist told Rueters, through a translator, “Talk about a fucking train wreck.”
“The infectious-disease research side of the house was getting a bit bored in 2019. There really hadn’t been any serious viral outbreaks since Ebola in Africa (2014-2016), so we thought, ‘Hey, let’s see if we can do something interesting with our lab creatures.’ And what better subjects to experiment with for developing new recipes than bats? We’ve got zillions of them. And we Asians love them — steamed, par-boiled, barbequed, sautéed, fried, bone-in, fileted, you name it.”
Dr. Zhengli said “about 500” mature bats at the institute were selected for recipe testing. “Everything was lined up. We had our woks, veggies, various sauces, rice and steamers, everything for experimenting with new bat recipes,” she said. “But, as we discovered, bats are hard to analyze by sight. We thought they were all healthy, virus-free. But when it came to preparing them, we found a number, probably a third of them, that looked sick.
“So, instead of destroying them, as I instructed, my dumbass assistant thought it better to release them back into the wild. She thought it was a more humane treatment of the bats. Well, it took about a week before the first of the released bats made it to Wuhan’s wet market where they came into contact with humans. That’s all it took,” Dr. Zhengli said.
The origin of the Covid-19 pandemic “is no mystery, really. And no, we didn’t tell the team from WHO (World Health Organization) what really happened when they were here to investigate. No one would have believed we could have been that stupid — and the government sure as hell wouldn’t want to admit it,” Dr. Zhengli told Rueters.
Biden ordered an initial intelligence review in March and upon being presented with its conclusions as part of his regular presidential daily briefing determined more digging was required. He also ordered that excerpts of the assessment be declassified to demonstrate the U.S. government’s commitment to investigating the origins of the pandemic and to increase pressure on China to cooperate, the White House announced.
But, as Dr. Zhengli said to Rueters, “Is anyone really going to believe the simplest answer — a stupid human decision — is the real reason for so much death?
“On the plus side,” she added, “the new Wuhan Institute cookbook is getting a lot of positive feedback and can be ordered through Amazon.”
LICENSES!?! WE DON’T NEED NO STINKING LICENSES! IN STUNNINGLY BACKWARD MOVE, TEXAS LEGISLATURE VOTES TO ALIGN REGS FOR HANDGUNS WITH THOSE FOR RIFLES; SPOILER ALERT: THERE AREN’T ANY
AUSTIN, Texas (Rueters) — Texas, with more mass shootings since 2016 than any other state, is poised to remove one of its last major gun restrictions after lawmakers approved allowing people to carry handguns without a license, and the background check and training that go with it.
The Republican-dominated Legislature approved the measure and will send it to Gov. Greg Abbott, who has said he will sign it despite the objections of law enforcement groups who say it would endanger the public and police. More than 70 Texans have been murdered in five mass shootings (incidents with at least 4 deaths) in the past five years, not including the gunmen who were killed either by law enforcement or by their own hands.
Gun control groups also oppose the measure, noting the state’s recent history of mass shootings, including those at an El Paso Walmart (23 dead), a church in Sutherland Springs (26 dead), and a high school outside Houston (10 dead).
Texas already has some of the loosest gun laws in the country and has more than 1.6 million handgun license holders.
Supporters of the bill say it would allow Texans to better defend themselves in public while abolishing unnecessary impediments to the constitutional right to bear arms. Once signed into law, Texas will join nearly two dozen other states that allow some form of unregulated carry of a handgun, and by far be the most populous.
As confirmation of the dubious value of the new law, the National Rifle Association was among those supporting the measure.
“A right requiring you to pay a tax or obtain a government permission slip is not a right at all,” said Jason Ouimet, executive director of the NRA Institute for Legislative Action, apparently oblivious to the irony of the state’s new, stiffer ID requirements for voting.
Texas already allows rifles to be carried in public without a license. The measure sent to Abbott would allow anyone age 21 or older to carry a handgun as long as they don’t have felony criminal convictions or some other legal prohibition in their background.
But without the state background check, law enforcement groups worry there would be no way to weed them out in advance. The bill does include stiffer penalties for felons caught illegally carrying guns. But a spokesman for a statewide felons group, “So, We’re Felons, BFD,” said his members weren’t particularly bothered by the increased penalties. “No licenses, right? Who’s gonna know?”
Texas has allowed people to carry handguns since 1995 and has been reducing the cost and training requirements for getting a license for the last decade. In the 25 years since residents have been legally carrying handguns, Texas has lost more than 130 residents in a dozen mass shootings, ranging from four to 27 victims per attack.
As they used to say in the Old West: “Draw!” Your own conclusions, that is.
WHAT ARE THEY DRINKING IN ARIZONA? GOP PREFERS TRUMP’S KOOL-AID
PHOENIX (Rueters) — A Republican-led hand recount of votes cast in Arizona’s most populous county may have uncovered some 40,000 fraudulent ballots, allegedly from China and favoring Democrat Joe Biden over former President Donald Trump, confident GOP state leaders told Rueters. If confirmed, the new find could have been nearly enough to have pushed Arizona into Trump’s column in the Electoral College. Biden won Arizona by about 45,000 votes.
However, since Biden won the Electoral College by 74 votes, 306-232, even with a loss of Arizona’s 11 votes, his margin of victory nationwide would still have been a commanding 63 votes, a state election official pointed out.
Nevertheless, Arizona’s GOP leaders have insisted on moving forward with the recount — arranging for private financing of the effort — even though no one is yet disputing the validity of Biden’s statewide victory.
“There are accusations that 40,000 ballots were flown into Arizona and it was stuffed into the box, and it came from the southeast part of the world — Asia —and what they’re doing is to find out if there’s bamboo in the paper,” said John Brakey, geographically challenged co-founder of AUDIT, Americans United for Democracy, Integrity, and Transparency in Elections, which is sponsoring the ballot review.
Senate Republicans issued a subpoena to take control of 2.1 million ballots, voting machines and election data from Maricopa County after former President Donald Trump claimed without evidence that his loss in Arizona and other battleground states was marred by fraud. There’s still no evidence. None. Nada.
Heedless of their apparent foolishness in pursuing victory where none existed — while simultaneously attacking the integrity of Arizona’s election processes — Republicans hired several firms led by Cyber Ninjas, a small Florida-based consultancy with no election experience before this year, to audit the materials. So far, not so good, but company officials have high hopes for those Chinese ballots. “We think they’ll validate the recount,” said an official, apparently unaware of what authentic ballots actually looked like.
The review won’t change the outcome of the election, but some Trump supporters believe it will turn up evidence to support his narrative of fraud. Voting-rights advocates and election administrators say the 2020 election was conducted well and worry the Arizona GOP review is using slipshod procedures and investigating far-fetched conspiracy theories. You think?
‘INSTAGRAM FOR KIDS’? OWNER FACEBOOK DETERMINED TO REVERSE PROGRESS AGAINST SEX ABUSERS BY AT LEAST A GENERATION, PROSECUTORS AND CHILD ADVOCATES FEAR
MENLO PARK, Calif. (Rueters) — Facebook says it is working on a version of its Instagram app for kids under 13 who are technically not allowed to use the app in its current form due to federal privacy regulations — but pretty much do, anyway. Pedophiles have been tweeting their support worldwide since news broke of the company’s new marketing drive while prosecutors and activists fighting child abuse are raising the alarm.
The company confirmed it is “exploring a parent-controlled experience” on Instagram called Instagram For Kids, or “Eye4K.”
The move came just a day after Facebook announced a slew of new measures intended to keep teenagers safe on Instagram — but that announcement made no mention of the plan to build Eye4K. Now the exciting news is public, pedophiles have tweeted.
“What were they thinking,” said one state attorney general who agreed to speak with Rueters on the condition of anonymity. “This would be Chester The Molester’s fondest dream come true,” he said, referring to a popular Hustler magazine cartoon character promoting the virtues of child abuse.
Critics said a kid-friendly Instagram is just a way for Facebook to expand its user base and condition children into using its products so it can later make money off of them.
In the meantime, however, Facebook expects to profit handsomely from Eye4K by broadening Instagram’s appeal to potentially millions of new customers whose illicit activities largely have been confined to the Dark Web, home to the worst of the worst internet users, child protection activists told Rueters.
“Facebook poses one of the biggest threats when it comes to children’s privacy,” said Rasha Abdul-Rahim, co-director of Amnesty Tech, an arm of the nonprofit Amnesty International. “Increasing safeguards for children online is paramount, but the fact remains that Facebook will be harvesting children’s data and profiting off their detailed profiles.”
Facebook launched the Messenger for Kids app in 2017, pitching it as an extension of a parent’s account. But many child-development experts urged the company to pull it, saying kids don’t need to be on social media — “and most parents have no fucking clue what their kids are up to online, anyway,” said a Delaware child protection official. “How does Facebook think this is a good idea for kids? They must ignore all the news of child sex abuse and trafficking and abduction of children. Or maybe it doesn’t matter when the bottom line is involved.”
Facebook lamely justified its Eye4K decision in a statement: “Increasingly kids are asking their parents if they can join apps that help them keep up with their friends. Right now there aren’t many options for parents, so we’re working on building additional products — like we did with Messenger Kids — that are suitable for kids, managed by parents.”
Like we said, too many parents are Internet clueless. But pedophiles have really sharpened their online skills.
AND FINALLY….OUR SINCEREST AND HAPPIEST BIRTHDAY WISHES TO NEWSMAKERBLOG’S SENIOR INVESTIGATIVE CORRESPONDENT, ANDREW SQUIBLEY, WHO TURNED A SPRITELY, SPIRITED 140 ON MAY 25TH
“I didn’t have much time to apprentice in this business,” Squibley recalled for us. “I was pretty much thrown right into the meat grinder of daily news coverage. My newspaper, The Bumfuck Bugle of Beulah, NH, didn’t have a large staff but still tried to play with the big boys.
“That’s how I got to cover one of the biggest stories of my career, the assassination of William McKinley,” he said. “Turns out I was a natural, a reporter with the gift, know what I mean? Next thing you know I was on the train to Washington, DC, as national correspondent for The Bugle. The rest is history.”
Another masterpiece, James. As always, insightful, humorous and wickedly on target. Thanks for the b’day wishes. Be well, mi amigo.