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WHO Investigates Claims That Swine Flu Resulted From Human Error

Soulskill posted more than 5 years ago | from the bacon-is-innocent dept.

Medicine 249

Tom DBA writes "Bloomberg reports on claims that the swine flu could have been accidentally made in a lab, which are now being investigated by the World Health Organization. Quoting: 'Adrian Gibbs, 75, who collaborated on research that led to the development of Roche Holding AG's Tamiflu drug, said in an interview today that he intends to publish a report suggesting the new strain may have accidentally evolved in eggs scientists use to grow viruses and drugmakers use to make vaccines. Gibbs said that he came to his conclusion as part of an effort to trace the virus's origins by analyzing its genetic blueprint. ... Gibbs and two colleagues analyzed the publicly available sequences of hundreds of amino acids coded by each of the flu virus's eight genes. ... [The CDC's Nancy Cox says] since researchers don't have samples of swine flu viruses from South America and Africa, where the new strain may have evolved, those regions can't be ruled out as natural sources for the new flu.'" Time has a related story evaluating the World Health Organization's response to H1N1.

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First plot! (5, Funny)

Chas (5144) | more than 5 years ago | (#27937929)

My minions! We are discovered!

We must now shift gears from a swine flu pandemic to sharks! With frickin' LASER BEAMS!

Re:First plot! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27938011)

Crab people and sharks teaming up. Scary days ahead.

Re:First plot! (4, Insightful)

dkleinsc (563838) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938059)

It could be worse: Randall Flagg could be traveling the countryside to gather his minions in Las Vegas.

Re:First plot! (1)

Viper Daimao (911947) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938943)

It could be worse: Randall Flagg could be traveling the countryside to gather his minions in Las Vegas.

But what if he is? [twitter.com]

Re:First plot! (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27938087)

My friend, you are more correct than you realize:

Swine Flu is a government media conspiracy to halt the flow of Mexico's tourism dollars as punishment for embarassing America with regards to drug demand and the fact that 95% of guns used in Mexican border crime are procured in America.

There is a bright side to all of this: Cheap bacon and pork chops!

Re:First plot! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27938693)

the fact that 95% of guns used in Mexican border crime are procured in America.

*Citation needed.

It's something like 90% of weapons sent from Mexican authorities to the ATF for tracing purposes come back as US weapons. The actual percentage of total weapons is very small in comparison. There's also no mention on the origins of those weapons. Just b/c they're traced to the US, doesn't mean they came from civilians.

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2009/04/02/myth-percent-guns-mexico-fraction-number-claimed/

Re:First plot! (1)

Viper Daimao (911947) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938981)

Factcheck.org, agrees [factcheck.org] that 90%-95% is wrong too, though they say the actual number is probably higher than in the fox article.

Re:First plot! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27939217)

Or just use a mega shark http://www.youtube.com/v/Fa7ck5mcd1o&hl=es&fs=1 [youtube.com]

lol (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27937943)

That's what you fuckers get.

You fucked up and now you got swine flue.

Re:lol (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27938993)

[...]and now you got swine flue.

Well, at least my house will smell like bacon when I use my woodstove.

So . . . (0)

arizwebfoot (1228544) | more than 5 years ago | (#27937945)

The people who make Tamiflu released a virus into the wild so people would take Tamiflu . . . some marketing guy/gal just made retirement.

Re:So . . . (2, Insightful)

TinFoilMan (1371973) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938013)

It's the American way, don't you know.

Re:So . . . (2, Insightful)

zxjio (1475207) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938063)

-1 crazed conspiracy theory

Re:So . . . (5, Funny)

Fex303 (557896) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938207)

-1 crazed conspiracy theory

You must be new here. The crazed conspiracy theories are the best part of Slashdot.

Re:So . . . (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27938661)

Well, when regular influenze kills ~40,000 americans a year, and this stuff makes headlines with 3 deaths.. You have to wonder who is benefiting.

Re:So . . . (2, Insightful)

twostix (1277166) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938763)

Actually perfectly rational events being labeled 'conspiracy theories' by smug self entitled 'intellectuals' who sit inside and push buttons to make other people rich all day and night is the best part of Slashdot.

Here's a 'crazy conspiracy theory' example:

A big pharma company released a drug that it knew caused more heart attacks than it stopped and when scientists started critising the drug the company drew up a hit list and set out to discredit and destroy the careers and lives of anybody on the list.

Slashdots initial response...

-1 crazed conspiracy theory

Then again the collective "wisdom" of Slashdot was 110% certain that the Ipod was going to be a complete flop so I guess that should say something of the level of understanding about reality here.

Re:So . . . (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938961)

Have you seen my work? I don't make anybody rich~

heh.

Actually I made two guys extremely wealthy and they totally screwed me.

Re:So . . . (2, Funny)

Fred_A (10934) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938681)

-1 crazed conspiracy theory

And judging from the title they don't even seem to know WHO does the investigation. Sloppy journalism as well.

Re:So . . . (4, Interesting)

twostix (1277166) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938165)

I mentioned this when the media was powering up the hysteria machine.

Many government stockpiles of Tamiflu from the last pandemic that according to the "experts" was dead set going to "wipe us out" (lol) are expiring right now. Many governments were *not* going to restock to previous levels due to the enourmous cost [google.com] .

Guess that's changed now huh?

Roche might just have the best marketing department in the world. Even better than Merck [google.com] - Just incase *anybody* tries to make excuses that nobody would stoop so low as to do as the article suggests on purpose, there's the type of entity being dealt with so check your "never attribute incompetence to malice" mindless drek at the door thanks (just preempting, sorry).

- Works a little to close to big pharma for comfort.

Re:So . . . (5, Insightful)

geekoid (135745) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938989)

"according to the "experts" was dead set going to "wipe us out""

No expert ever said that.

You do carry the burden of ignorance pretty well.

Re:So . . . (5, Funny)

Hmmble (829603) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938297)

The people who make Tamiflu released a virus into the wild so people would take Tamiflu . . .

'Viral Marketing'! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Viral_marketing [wikipedia.org]

Re:So . . . (0, Redundant)

Kozz (7764) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938773)

Oooh... viral marketing.

Tinfoil hat wearing crowd said this was man-made (4, Insightful)

VShael (62735) | more than 5 years ago | (#27937955)

I suppose even a stopped clock might be right twice a day. But still, there's a difference between man-made on purpose, and man-made by accident/human error. So all the tinfoil hat wearing brigade, can hold off on the "I told you so's".

Re:Tinfoil hat wearing crowd said this was man-mad (5, Insightful)

Ossifer (703813) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938043)

"[The CDC's Nancy Cox says] since researchers don't have samples of swine flu viruses from South America and Africa, where the new strain may have evolved, those regions can't be ruled out as natural sources"

But let's start spreading those conspiracy theories anyway!

All depends on which group (1)

Shivetya (243324) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938197)

wants to claim they were specifically targeted and which government agency; most likely during Bush's term; started it.

Never underestimate the internet for created a mess, or having Washington to create distractions from their back breaking budgets

Re:Tinfoil hat wearing crowd said this was man-mad (5, Insightful)

twostix (1277166) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938383)

You know there's two things I've learned in my nearly 30 years on this earth.

Men often do evil things for money. Always have and always will. Now there's various scales of 'evilness' but near everyone does something at some stage that could be called evil by someone.

$5000 on the line will make some people murder and everyone accepts that.

Here's the weird thing:

$100,000,000 dollars on the line and a certain type of person thinks that *nobody* would kill for it. It's crazy! I mean you wouldn't even consider releasing a weak little flu on the world to get a taste of that sort of cash? If not that's great! Your a man of values. But there's a million men on the planet who *would* do it without a single shred of remorse.

Rapid anti-conspiracy nuts are as bad as rabid pro-conspiracy nuts. Both are absolutely delusional about the equally beautiful and grotesque mess that is called humanity.

And for god sakes man do you have *any* idea of some of the shit that big pharma has pulled over the years?? Something like this would hardly even be a stretch.

Re:Tinfoil hat wearing crowd said this was man-mad (5, Funny)

thedonger (1317951) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938549)

You know there's two things I've learned in my nearly 30 years on this earth.

30 years? Hmmm, that's about 0.000000007% of the age of the earth. I'd say you are qualified.

Not that I disagree with you, but let's face it: one other aspect of being human (in addition to your 'evil' conjecture), is that we believe not what the facts bear out but rather what the facts bear out that reinforces what we already believe.

In my almost 37 years I have realized that virtually nothing is 100% provable, and therefore virtually everything is open to some level of interpretation, depending on the interpreter's level of delusion.

No matter what "facts" are released to the public there will be people on both sides of the argument backing up their respective positions, and there will be nothing to convince them otherwise.

Re:Tinfoil hat wearing crowd said this was man-mad (5, Funny)

SupremoMan (912191) | more than 5 years ago | (#27939231)

30 years? Hmmm, that's about 0.000000007% of the age of the earth.

That's .5% of Earth's age! Damn God-less American lies!

Re:Tinfoil hat wearing crowd said this was man-mad (0)

Ossifer (703813) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938569)

Mod parent funny.

Re:Tinfoil hat wearing crowd said this was man-mad (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27938595)

And for god sakes man do you have *any* idea of some of the shit that big pharma has pulled over the years??

Enlighten us.

Re:Tinfoil hat wearing crowd said this was man-mad (2, Insightful)

maharb (1534501) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938621)

Just because someone would do it doesn't mean they did it.

This would be a logic professors ultimate example of fallacies.

1) Because they would: they did.
2) Because 'anti-conspiracy' people are nut jobs: you can't argue they didn't release the flu.
3) Because some pharma companies did questionable things in the past: this company is doing questionable things now.

Your claims are backed by nothing but wild speculation and logically flawed arguments.

Huh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27938815)

The post you're replying to doesn't claim they "did it", where are you getting that from? Or is slashdot's "Parent" button broken, and you actually replied to a completely different post? Or did you hit "Reply" to the wrong post?

Re:Tinfoil hat wearing crowd said this was man-mad (4, Insightful)

ClintJCL (264898) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938825)

3) So if I punch you in the face every 5 seconds 20 times, that 21st time you're not going to expect it because something in the past is nothing but wild speculation about the future?

Please come hang out with me ;)

Re:Tinfoil hat wearing crowd said this was man-mad (5, Insightful)

pherthyl (445706) | more than 5 years ago | (#27939011)

People doing evil things for money is not what makes conspiracy theories so unlikely to be true.
People do evil things for money all the time. People do evil things for free all the time, so we certainly don't need the added incentive of money.

Where the train goes off the rails is where a conspiracy theory requires that massive numbers of people are keeping their mouths shut about some grand plan that they're a small part of. That can be done for a short time, but eventually every secret that has more than about 3 people in on it comes out.

Re:Tinfoil hat wearing crowd said this was man-mad (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27939049)

...my nearly 30 years on this earth.

In my 50 years Ive learned when I was 30 I was an idiot

Re:Tinfoil hat wearing crowd said this was man-mad (1)

Vellmont (569020) | more than 5 years ago | (#27939089)


You know there's two things I've learned in my nearly 30 years on this earth.

Here's one thing I've found to be true on my slightly longer years on this earth.

Reasoning purely using peoples motivations and what's _possible_ without looking for actual evidence to support your conclusions will turn you quickly into a conspiracy nut. Conspiracy theories always seem to have at their base the motivations of the people involved. Any "evidence" is always secondary, and contrary evidence is ignored.

Re:Tinfoil hat wearing crowd said this was man-mad (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938749)

They don't have samples from Transylvania, where the flu may have evolved, either. They have viruses there, right? I'm not sure how that is relevant in any way.

Re:Tinfoil hat wearing crowd said this was man-mad (1)

Ossifer (703813) | more than 5 years ago | (#27939005)

> They don't have samples from Transylvania, where the flu may have evolved, either. They have viruses there, right?

Yes, but they probably do have samples from that region. They don't have samples from Mars, and it has been posited that life on Earth originated from Mars, thus if you anti-conspiracy nuts deny the Great Martian H1N1 conspiracy you're all fools!

> I'm not sure how that is relevant in any way.

Thank you for being honest!

Re:Tinfoil hat wearing crowd said this was man-mad (1)

MadTinfoilHatter (940931) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938911)

But let's start spreading those conspiracy theories anyway!

Yes, let's. Business has been slow lately.

Re:Tinfoil hat wearing crowd said this was man-mad (1)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938223)

But still, there's a difference between man-made on purpose, and man-made by accident/human error. Yeah, yeah... never attribute to malice that which can be explained by stupidty... however:

Sufficiently advanced stupidity is indistinguishable from malice.

Furthermore, I may be slightly paranoid, and I know I'm jaded and cynical, but I simply don't believe that a company that makes a flu treatment "accidentally" releases a virulent disease upon the public. If it was gross negligence that allowed this to happen, then I'm wrong... but I don't believe that explanation for a second.

If it turns out that the virus is man-made, whoever is responsible needs to be held fully accountable as if they did it on purpose. There is no amount of plausible deniability that alleviates the hardships suffered by those who lost loved ones.

Re:Tinfoil hat wearing crowd said this was man-mad (3, Insightful)

marcello_dl (667940) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938381)

Tinfoil wearing crowd will never be right since some conspiracy plots simply aren't there, which doesn't prove or disprove any theory.

Since a large number of conspiracies happened, conspiracy deniers tout-court are in the same league of tinfoil wearing crowd.

Back in topic: there are wars for oil, there are environmental disasters, a virus released to raise some money isn't surprising at all.

There are other potential uses too: if economy collapses, crowds may gather with pitchforks the old fashioned way, a more virulent strain of H1N1 would force people to stay home instead.

Re:Tinfoil hat wearing crowd said this was man-mad (3, Insightful)

canajin56 (660655) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938865)

Even if this one isn't, scientists ARE creating lethal strains of H1N1 (aka Spanish Flu/Swine Flu) in the lab. In fact, in 2007, they succeeded in creating an H1N1 variant that kills monkeys in the same way Spanish Flu killed humans. They hope to study how to fight it off, so they will be prepared for another major pandemic. Now, I doubt very much that this is one of them. But don't assume they aren't making them, because they are, and it's not even a secret.

Time to panic already? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27937977)

Cue the widespread panic in 3...2...1 ...And here we go.

Origins (5, Insightful)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | more than 5 years ago | (#27937985)

So the virus is found in the poor countryside of Mexico...

And someone thinks it was created somewhere in a lab?

I've heard some far out conspiracy theories, but creating a mild flu in a lab and then transported out to Colillacarajo, Mexico? That's just dumb.

Re:Origins (4, Funny)

oneirophrenos (1500619) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938109)

I've heard some far out conspiracy theories, but creating a mild flu in a lab and then transported out to Colillacarajo, Mexico? That's just dumb.

You think they'd be so obvious as to release it in a big city such as New York or London? Of course they'd release it in a place where no-one would expect it to be released, like rural Mexico.

Now where's my tin foil hat?

Re:Origins (0)

twostix (1277166) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938479)

Why?

I can think of half a dozen reasons why it would be a good idea.

First would be so people say "creating a mild flu in a lab and then transported out to Colillacarajo, Mexico? That's just dumb."

Just sayin...

Re:Origins (3, Insightful)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938687)

So the virus is found in the poor countryside of Mexico...

And someone thinks it was created somewhere in a lab?

Your comment is stupid because: viruses travel.

It's also stupid because: If you actually wanted to release a virus, you'd do it in someplace that would cover your tracks.

Re:covering tracks (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938783)

So, pretty much anywhere?

Re:covering tracks (2, Insightful)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938861)

So, pretty much anywhere?

It would be incredibly stupid to release it near to the point of creation, and it would be even dumber to not take the tenth of a second to realize this before posting a comment on the subject. With that said, the smartest place to release it would probably be outside the lab of a competitor researching the same or a similar virus. But even more to the point, releasing a swine flu in Mexico is entirely plausible. If you broke it out in Switzerland you'd have a lot of work to do to convince people.

Re:Origins (2, Insightful)

FooRat (182725) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938891)

So the virus is found in the poor countryside of Mexico...

And someone thinks it was created somewhere in a lab?

I've heard some far out conspiracy theories, but creating a mild flu in a lab and then transported out to Colillacarajo, Mexico? That's just dumb.

Yes, because it would make far more sense to release it right near the lab, of course ... nobody would *ever* guess *then*. Also, it makes much more sense to release it in a country far better prepared to not only contain any outbreak rapidly, but also far better able to analyse the genetic make-up and origins, in addition to analysing the spread of the disease for further clues on its origins.

Actually, if you think about it for more than five seconds, if you *are* part of such a "conspiracy", it makes perfectly logical sense to purposely release it in the middle of a pig farming community in Mexico, and would be incredibly stupid to release it in your own backyard.

no labs in mexico? (1)

ClintJCL (264898) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938905)

I forgot Mexico had no labs! /sarcasm

Re:Origins (1)

colfer (619105) | more than 5 years ago | (#27939085)

Next to one of the largest* hog farms in the world, with almost 1,000,000 head.

It's a farming town where most people commute into Mexico City for the work week, though.

* I Googled "largest hog farm in the world" and came up with a lot of stories about the third largest one proposed, on an Indian reservation, at 859,000 head.

Re:Origins (1)

DriedClexler (814907) | more than 5 years ago | (#27939103)

Huh? You're saying it's stupid to do something that others wouldn't anticipate?

Here's the flaw in that reasoning, borrowed from South Park:

Forensic Health Investigator: Vaccine Company X, um, did you deliberately engineer the Swine Flu Influenza so as to make obscenely huge amounts of money by selling the only cure?
VCX: What? Nooooooooooooo, don't be ridiculous!
FHI: Well, um, it looks like you did engineer it and all...
VCX: Okay, FHI? Try to give us a little credit here. If we were going to start a pandemic by releasing an engineered virus on the general population, we wouldn't make it look like a virus engineered to cause a pandemic! We'd release it in some hick town in Mexico or something.
FHI: Oh, okay. ... Just checking.
VCX: *dumbass*

Re:Origins (2, Insightful)

smellsofbikes (890263) | more than 5 years ago | (#27939227)

On the maybe-inna-lab side, if you didn't want to be discovered you'd release it in an area where you'd reasonably expect a new disease to be discovered: a rural area where people, chickens, and swine live in comparatively close proximity. (And Mexico is an extra plus because it's much easier to smuggle samples from US labs to Mexico than to India or China: you just drive.)

On the other hand, the CDC is spending some time and money investigating claims that the first cases were actually in San Diego in September: it's not at all clear it actually started in Mexico. (read the wikipedia page on the outbreak [wikipedia.org] for more details.

accident? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27938001)

After the Merck producing a journal with only positive reviews and their pressure program against MDs that give negative opinions the question begs answer: was it an accident, or was it a marketing movement by some big medicine corporation to grow the market for their products.

In related news (5, Funny)

internerdj (1319281) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938007)

Umbrella Corporation releases an apology saying its really, really sorry for unleashing the pandemic flu on the world. They do however guarantee they are taking the appropriate steps to ensure nothing like this will ever happen again.

Re:In related news (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27939015)

Anyone know why there are people standing outside of my window, slightly hunched over?

What next? (3, Funny)

Dan East (318230) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938053)

Just waiting for a deaf mute, a #1 hit rock star, an unemployed factory worker and a knocked up teen to come out of the woodwork to fight a demon that wears cowboy boots.

Re:What next? (3, Insightful)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938245)

Nick Andros, Jimi Hendrix, Sean Sananikonem and a pregnant Britney Spears fight George W. Bush?
Where can I watch this?

Re:What next? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27938723)

That spells MOON

Re:What next? (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938979)

It's ok, you'll be dead long before they find each other.

Movie Rights!!! (1)

arthurpaliden (939626) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938057)

Quick I need to hire some writers to do the 'Disease of the Week' movie for cable TV. Now who can I get cheap to play the evil scientists. I wonder if I could get George W. and Dick C., I hear they are currently unemployed or would that be type casting?

Re:Movie Rights!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27938241)

This sounds like something out of 24

Re:Movie Rights!!! (1)

rednip (186217) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938719)

This sounds like something out of 24

Only if it can be exposed within minutes of torturing everyone they come across, the bad guys have a mole in the Counter Terrorism Unit, and the nature of the threat changes 12 hours into the investigation.

Re:Movie Rights!!! (1)

bloobloo (957543) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938435)

I would suggest Robert Towne as the writer, with Rade Serbedzija and/or Christian Manon to play the evil scientists. This may save you some time.

Whoopsie (2, Interesting)

Greyfox (87712) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938091)

Could their donation of millions of doses of tamaflu to the WHO a couple days ago be an attempt to hush someone up?

If so it didn't work very well...

pandemic preparation (1)

skeletor935 (790212) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938093)

Well, I guess all our years of preparing for the Zombie Apocalypse will finally pay off with all these scientists sitting in labs creating viruses it's only a matter of time.

/gets out zombie apocalypse survival gear
/puts on cape and sword
/equips shotgun
/prepares to finally be loved

Re:pandemic preparation (1)

BlackSnake112 (912158) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938203)

You forgot the chain saw attached to one arm... Oh wait different movie.

Re:pandemic preparation (1)

Convector (897502) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938209)

No capes!

Re:pandemic preparation (3, Funny)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938559)

Emphasis mine:

by skeletor935 (790212) Alter Relationship on Wednesday May 13, @11:07AM (#27938093)

>Well, I guess all our years of preparing for the Zombie Apocalypse will finally pay off with all these scientists sitting in labs creating viruses it's only a matter of time.

/gets out zombie apocalypse survival gear
/puts on cape and sword
/equips shotgun
/prepares to finally be loved

Dude, you're Skeletor. You're not gonna be loved. Ever. Feared, maybe. Loathed, definitely. Loved? Keep dreaming.

Re:pandemic preparation (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27938945)

You know I think I now understand that cartoon better... There was a lot of subtext I missed.

Now all we need (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27938117)

are for tobacco company's to start investing in cancer research...

M-O-O-N, That spells whoops! (3, Funny)

MetaPhyzx (212830) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938133)

Obligatory nod to the fictional Captain Trips. Welcome to the real world. In other news, I'll be relocating to Boulder shortly...

Re:M-O-O-N, That spells whoops! (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938787)

Here's a fun conspiracy theory: The real illness that actually kills people is on hot standby, and this was just a test to see what infection/spread rates would be like. They're just tuning the process to produce their desired results.

There is a side effect though. If you got sick in the last run, expect to get sick in the next one... or plan to move before then.

I'm not actually advancing this theory as reality, but it's still tempting to think about planning for it.

Re:M-O-O-N, That spells whoops! (1)

rotide (1015173) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938969)

The problem with these conspiracy theories is this single and simple flaw. You have to bring people in on the conspiracy to create it and set it in motion. In this sue happy world, you can bet your ass that at least one person "in on it" will blow the whistle. Maybe not for personal gain but at least to see someone burn. If these people are "evil" and cooking a world altering conspiracy, they would probably have no qualms cutting 401k's or health benefits of the other workers. This would be easily enough to push someone to spill the beans.

Keeping a conspiracy under wraps is near impossible. The only way you can reasonably assure it won't be leaked is if everyone in on it is 100% vested and has no reason to go astray.

I'm not saying there aren't people out there trying to push large conspiratorial agendas, because I'm sure there are. I'm just saying I don't think they can hire all who it would take to make it really work and not have a leak somewhere that blows the plan.

Re:M-O-O-N, That spells whoops! (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 5 years ago | (#27939095)

Planning for most worldwide disaster events is sort of a binary thing. Either you can keep going when the fuel runs out, or you can't. If fuel doesn't dry up, a weeks worth of food will probably make things more comfortable, but that should be about enough, and a week without calories is something most people will be able to survive, so it isn't hugely imperative.

I haven't yet reached the point where I think it is worthwhile being able to keep going when the fuel runs out, but it crosses my mind now and then (a small scale, wood fired, steam power plant would be nicely independent and also be sort of cool just to mess around with).

Greatest quote from a scientific article ever. (1)

fish_in_the_c (577259) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938151)

"This is how science progresses," he said. "Somebody comes up with a wild idea, and then they all pounce on it and kick you to death, and then you start off on another silly idea."
-- the Author of the Study, Adrian Gibbs, 75,

This was the plot of Mission Impossible 2! (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27938183)

Sheesh, you would think that virologists never watch movies or something.

Mexico bio labs (1)

pesho (843750) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938217)

Damn! Those rural Mexico biotech labs are really sloppy. I bet the authorities have not been paying attention to their safety practices.

My response to H1N1 (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27938225)

Queen takes N1, checkmate.

Why is always humans fault. (3, Funny)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938243)

A Virus of such evil that can make most of the population miserable for about a week. However because of a catchy name, and the few people who did die from it didn't quite fit the normal flu victim profile.

Such a thing must be a human fault for creating such a weapon of mass annoyance. Or... It could just be what happens naturally in the word.

Re:Why is always humans fault. (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938553)

Such a thing must be a human fault for creating such a weapon of mass annoyance. Or... It could just be what happens naturally in the word.

Why do you think humans necessarily did this? Think about it for a minute.

We all know that Douglas Adams was right.

Where do you find lots of mice and pigs together? Right?

This was just their first attempt. They're just going to practice a bit more until they get this right. Be afraid.

Be very afraid.

Re:Why is always humans fault. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27938855)

"Where do you find lots of mice and pigs together? Right?"

On a farm?

And got busy... (1)

penguin_dance (536599) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938305)

"I don't think it could be a malignant thing," he said. "It's much more likely that some random thing has put these two viruses together."

[to Mr. Incredible]
Syndrome: Oh, no. Elastigirl? You married Elastigirl? Ho, ho, ho...
[sees the kids]
Syndrome: Oh - and got biz-zay!

No Sir (1)

Gat0r30y (957941) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938361)

âoeYou really want a very sober assessmentâ of the science behind the claim, Fukuda said May 11 at the WHOâ(TM)s Geneva headquarters.

No thanks. I'll take drunken hysteria please.

The govenrments plan (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27938395)

Obviously, this was planned by the government [blogspot.com] to kill us all...

Aliens caused the swine-flu... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27938397)

...right after they caused 9/11

WHO Investigates Claims Swine Flu DESIGNED (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27938469)

in Dr. Evil's [youtube.com] Lab.

Yours In Revolution,
KIlgore Trout [youtube.com]

Eat mor chiken (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27938511)

I think I know where the funding for the lab came from!

I still remember when HIV was blamed on the US gov (2, Interesting)

forgot_my_username (1553781) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938535)

I was laughing about it (the conspiracy us government release of HIV story), until I talked to a friend of mine doing research in retroviruses... and he got a real thoughtful look on his face and said "you know..."
So, I wouldn't put it past anyone to release a virus... by mistake or on purpose.

Chickens and Pigs (1)

kulakovich (580584) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938713)

I didn't know that hanging chicken cages over the pig pen constituted a "lab" nowadays, but ok.

~kulakovich

ps - yeah, it is so the pigs get to eat the chicken waste, and exactly how this type of thing happens.

ReGenesis (1)

suss (158993) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938829)

Wasn't this the plot of the ReGenesis tv series? Life imitates tv?

This sort of thing has cropped up before (1)

xerxesVII (707232) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938845)

and it has always been attributable to human error.

It evolved from WoW! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27938917)

http://totallylookslike.files.wordpress.com/2009/05/world-of-warcraft-totally-looks-lilke-swine-flu.jpg

Ok.. Somebody took the plague a little too seriously...

Also overheard at vaccine research lab... (5, Funny)

idontgno (624372) | more than 5 years ago | (#27938931)

"What the..? This is lemonade! What happened to my culture of amoebic dysentery?"

The day has come... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27939027)

[totallylookslike.com]
  Swine flu came from Northrend. [totallylookslike.com] ...somebody took arthas' plague a little too seriously...

Genetic recipe, not blueprint (1)

noidentity (188756) | more than 5 years ago | (#27939179)

Gibbs said that he came to his conclusion as part of an effort to trace the virus's origins by analyzing its genetic blueprint.

Genetic recipe, not blueprint [blogspot.com]

Media grab attempt (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27939255)

Anon because I played a role in what will be the official response to this claim.

This claim is bullshit. There is *no evidence* to support his claims.

Science progresses when you come up with a credible theory. It makes testable claims based on actual evidence, the current theories fail to explain it, and you have to come up with a new explanation.

This isn't that. This is just a silly idea. It generates press, it eats up valuable time from the members of the flu community, and it will amount to nothing.

No one denies that the current virus is weird. But weird doesn't mean man-made. This is not the first time that Adrian Gibbs has been at odds with the flu community, and he is yet to present credible scientific claim based on fact.

The burden of proof lies with the person who puts forward the wild idea. Once you know that reassortant viruses like this one have been in the swine population for at least the last 10 years, and that the most recent pandemic virus (1968) also came from swine, it is going to take a mountain of evidence to prove this.

It would be impossible to prove that this virus didn't come from a man-made source, so the tin-foil hat brigade will never be satisfied.

For the rest of the population - this is a media grab attempt, and has no basis in fact. Please treat it as such.

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