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Eugenics/Wuhan Lab Leak?/Donziger Update

Andrew Kimbrell, director of the International Center for Technology Assessment, joins us to talk about his documentary “A Dangerous Idea: Eugenics, Genetics and the American Dream,” and to give us an update on the Wuhan Lab leak theory. Plus, Ralph welcomes legendary civil rights attorney, Martin Garbus, to update us on new developments in the case of corporate prisoner, Steven Donziger.

Andrew Kimbrell is an internationally recognized public interest attorney, public speaker, and author. A leading proponent of regenerative forms of agriculture and organic policies, he is the executive director of the International Center for Technology Assessment. He is also the executive producer, co-writer, and featured in the documentary “A Dangerous Idea: Eugenics, Genetics, and the American Dream.” 

“We didn’t just want to say this theory [eugenics] is politically abhorrent, morally abhorrent. We wanted to say that it is scientifically completely unjustified. There is no science that says genes determine any complex human behavior traits at all.”

Andrew Kimbrell, C0-Executive producer of the film “A Dangerous Idea: Eugenics, Genetics, and the American Dream.”

 

“Biological determinism says, ‘Public policy will never work. It’s because some people are basically inferior.’ And it’s based in this idea that difference equals deficiency, instead of difference equals diversity which equals strength.”

Andrew Kimbrell, C0-Executive producer of the film “A Dangerous Idea: Eugenics, Genetics, and the American Dream.”

 

“[Eugenics is] a way of explaining inequality despite the idea of equality that’s supposed to be at the core of the country.”

Andrew Kimbrell, C0-Executive producer of the film “A Dangerous Idea: Eugenics, Genetics, and the American Dream.”

“We now know that’s it’s somewhere in the range of possible, probable, and for some scientists a near certainty that this (the Wuhan Lab] is where it (Covid-19] came from.”

Andrew Kimbrell: executive director of the International Center for Technology Assessment

“It doesn’t make any difference if we finally get what happened (lab leak or wet market). That can deflect us from the critical work we need to do to ban this type of ‘gain of function’ research.”

Andrew Kimbrell: executive director of the International Center for Technology Assessment

Martin Garbus is an attorney who is expert at every level of civil and criminal trial, and litigation. He has appeared before the United States Supreme Court in leading First Amendment cases and is the author of Tough Talk: How I Fought for Writers, Comics, Bigots, and the American Way. He is on the legal team representing Steven Donziger, who has been under house arrest for over two years and now faces six months in jail after a judge found him in contempt for not turning over evidence to Chevron.

“At one point, (Judge) Kaplan asks Donziger to turn over his computer files. And the computer files have all of the private privileged, confidential information between Steve (Donziger) and his clients and Steve and his lawyers. Steve refuses to do it.”

Martin Garbus, representing human rights lawyer Steven Donziger

“It’s an extraordinary case. It’s a cross between Kafka and Gilbert and Sullivan.”

Martin Garbus, representing human rights lawyer Steven Donziger

“It’s unheard of! (Judge Kaplan) hires a corporate law firm with tax dollars because he doesn’t like the prosecutor’s denial of his desire to prosecute Steve Donziger? This is incredible! This is like countries overseas that we have bad names for!”

Ralph Nader

 

To donate to the Steve Donziger Defense Fund, go to donzigerdefense.com

Ralph Nader Radio Hour Ep 389 Transcript (Right click to download)

16 Comments

  1. Don Rimmer says:

    This show demonstrates the level of social degradation the US has slumped into.. Integrity and moral fibre seem a thing of the past. The case against Steve Donziger boggles the mind. It shows how deep the corruption goes within the upper levels of the judiciary, which if it had any professional pride or internal ethical values, would have corrected this travesty long ago. To say this is a nation of law only partially describes the reality. The poor and downtrodden face the heavy hand of the “law” regularly. The rich and corporate class enjoy something quite different. Obama helped set that bar low with his statement that no one is above the law, but we must look forward not backwards. By that logic, we can never prosecute a crime, as they all occur in the past. You cannot bring charges against something that has yet to occur. Remarkably sophomoric by someone who should know better.

    As for the GMO debacle, companies claim to believe in free markets, but one of the provisions of a free market system is “perfect information,” so customers can make informed choices. Yet, the producers of GMOs fight tooth-and-nail to avoid labeling. Mr. Kimbrell explained clearly why they battle so hard against labeling; sales would basically collapse.
    They play both sides of the argument as well (and get away with it). To receive a patent for anything you must prove some uniqueness, otherwise the object is not eligible for a patent. Yet, when it comes to labeling, their argument is that no distinguishable difference exists between the genetically modified version and the natural equivalent. It can’t be both, so which is it? If the two products are the same, the patent should be revoked. If they are different enough to hold a patent, they need to be marked as such. If I can see this conflict, surely those assigned to oversee our food safety can as well; at least we’d hope so.
    The US used to be the gold standard around the world. Now we’re the international dumping ground. The trajectory isn’t good.
    Thank you so much for being a consistent voice pointing out the ugly truth

  2. Bruce K. says:

    I am beyond outraged at the situation with Steve Donziger. I heard about this several weeks ago somewhere, and then on theAnalysis.News and now it seems to be breaking everywhere.

    There corruptions stories seem so hit and miss, I have to wonder how many and how deep does this go and just what tiny percentage of these outrages every see any light of day Thanks for following this.

    What we have for our media, news, social and otherwise just is not working, unless we think that totalitarian corruption and brainwashing is working.

    The Guardian just published a story about how Facebook is shutting down people’s accounts who are using tools to analyze how Facebook works. This is a huge outrage.

    We have got to regain control of the basic functions of a just and democratic society.

  3. Donald Klepack says:

    Ralph thanks again for having 2 great guests that do not of access to main stream media. My question is how can we highlight and challenge the ACLU and New Democratic Party to go back to their core position of free speech? As a supporter of the Green party and the ACLU who helps fight for the Green Party and other 3rd party candidates to be placed on State Ballots and yet not fight for free speech. It’s very sad that the ACLU and the Democratic Party use the hatred of Donald Trump as an argument to change their mission of supporting Free Speech and the Constitution. This program highlighted this truth when Steve used Trumps anti-China position as argument to attack Kimbrell’s strong case against the NIH and Martin Garbus lack of criticism against the ACLU for not taking a stronger stance defending Steven Donzinger.

  4. Afdal Shahanshah says:

    Kimbrell didn’t have any scientific evidence when he hypothesized that SARS-CoV-2 came from a lab last year and he didn’t present any new scientific evidence this time. Vague appeals to authority (“Some scientists agree with me!”) and popularity (“It’s popular now, case closed!”) are not evidence. It’s very disappointing to hear Ralph lend credence to this assertion, but I suppose it’s consistent with some of his vague, nationalistic China bashing in some other episodes recently. Don’t be a dupe for the state department and its stenographers at Bezos’ rag, Ralph, I know you have the capability to be more skeptical than that. As a fan for years and a biologist myself, this was a tough interview to stomach. If progressivism is a commitment to science-based politics (that’s been my understanding), then I’m really starting to think that the ability to read peer-reviewed articles (which lab-leak proponents have regularly failed to do) may have to be a prerequisite for being a progressive. Because relying on science journalists who themselves can’t get the facts right seems to be failing us. The piece Nicholas Wade (who in fact does NOT have a reputation for accuracy among the scientific community he has reported on) wrote for Bulletin of Atomic Scientists was highly inaccurate and he repeatedly misrepresented and straw manned sources he cited. If Kimbrell wants to talk about groupthink he should look in the mirror. Here’s a good resource for listeners that dismantles key assertions made in Wade’s article:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PjafLCvejQA

    HUGE thanks to David for pushing back on Kimbrell’s garbage!

    • Wortmanberg says:

      Thanks for this, I was going to write a comment like this but I see there’s no need to now. I’d only add that it is not helpful, generally speaking (not just on RNRH), to present only one side of a complex or controversial scientific argument, especially with major political implications. Depending on what media one reads, one hears and sees credible sources, not kooks, arguing completely oppositely on an issue in succession, without having to clash with their would-be agonists, and laypeople typically cannot make head or tail of whether to accept one side or the other.

      I don’t know if it necessarily would be the best format for RNRH to have this kind of Munk Debate on an important question every time, but if not then I think it’s a duty of the podcast at least to air the other side at some point, perhaps at a (short) later date, and to have that “other side” directly respond to the party that disagrees with it.

      In this case, for example, wsws.org has an article 09/01/21 on why the Lab Leak theory is bullshit, which cites apparently credible scientific sources that would be expected to have a lively disagreement with Mr. Kimbrell. And so on.

      • Skro35 says:

        We appreciate you comment. But we are giving a platform to Kimbrell because his is not the dominant story out there. This is the alternative theory. The wet market theory is the dominant story.

        • Wortmanberg says:

          Thanks Steve. I don’t agree (the wet market theory might have been the dominant story last year), but appreciate your reply. I certainly do not disagree with the broader and more important proposition that Kimbrell advanced that the very existence if “gain of function” research, especially when it takes place in secret and without regulation, is evil and should be stopped.

  5. Arquimides says:

    SR ties eugenics to”proto-fascism” but the historical fact is that eugenics was promoted as a PROGRESSIVE movement by the same progressive, like the founder of planned parenthood, who wanted to get rid of so-called people of color.

  6. Bruce K. says:

    On most issues I trust and agree with Dr. Anthony Fauci, but a while back in a Senate Hearing Fauci got into an insult match with Rand Paul who I have no trust or agreement with – HOWEVER, in this one case when Paul described what he thought was gain of function research Fauci disagreed with him, citing peer reviewed comments about the research being done at Wuhan as NOT being gain of function, but because of the incompetent lame way these Senate Hearings are conducted Fauci either chose not to explain why what sounded like gain of function research was not in fact gain of function research, or he did not have the time or opportunity to do so. Any ideas on what was the point of that exchange in the Senate Hearing?

  7. David Hutchinson says:

    Here, Bruce…

    3/8/21 “What they were worried about was something called ‘gain-of-function’ research, in which the virulence or transmissibility of dangerous pathogens is deliberately increased. The purpose is to help scientists predict how viruses might evolve in ways that hurt humans before it happens in nature. But by bypassing pathogens’ natural evolutionary cycles, these experiments create risks of a human-made outbreak if a lab accident were to occur. For this reason, the Obama administration issued a moratorium on gain-of-function experiments in October 2014.

    “The Wuhan Institute of Virology had openly participated in gain-of-function research in partnership with U.S. universities and institutions. But the official told me the U.S. government had evidence that Chinese labs were performing gain-of-function research on a much larger scale than was publicly disclosed, meaning they were taking more risks in more labs than anyone outside China was aware of. This insight, in turn, fed into the lab-accident hypothesis in a new and troubling way.” https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2021/03/08/josh-rogin-chaos-under-heaven-wuhan-lab-book-excerpt-474322

    • Bruce K. says:

      David, I’ve read some on “gain of function” research, and my question is, why did Fauci say what Wuhan was doing was not gain of function … not even explaining way … not that he got much chance to speak.

      I’ve heard claims that the lab that Wuhan had was not secure enough to do this kind of research safely.

      I would just like to see some straight answers and less posturing and sound bytes.

      > For this reason, the Obama administration issued a moratorium on gain-of-function experiments in October 2014.

      It also appears that Obama’s ban was not followed. All of this is very concerning. Most concerning is the wild speculation and accusation and bickering among scientists.

  8. Tara L. Carreon says:

    There’s David causing trouble again! Get rid of him! He’s a contentious trouble-maker for Ralph, and does NOT add positive energy to the program. We listeners are nervous as heck every time he opens his mouth.

  9. Tara L. Carreon says:

    Hearing David Feldman attack Ralph’s guest Andrew Kimbrell from his high seat of political correctness was tediously familiar. David accused Kimbrell of propagandizing for China hawks and Trump to cover up his abysmal handling of the crisis. Ralph reined him in, but only after he’d put Kimbrell on the defensive. This type of narrow thinking causes David to miss out on actually learning facts, like the unpleasant fact that, during the Trump administration, the United States resumed paying for “gain of function” research at the Wuhan Lab. You had to listen to Kimbrell to learn, but David wasn’t on the air to learn, he was on the air to preach his tedious dogma of political correctness.

    What Kimbrell had to say was important, but what he didn’t say was far more important. Perhaps David actually managed to so wrong-foot the man that he forgot to tell us about the recently released bombshell from the House Foreign Affairs Committee. Whatever the reason, he missed a veritable five-alarm fire on the Covid front. In a pay-walled August 2nd WaPo article by Josh Rogin, I found a reference to the House Foreign Affairs Committee Report on The Origins of COVID-19: An Investigation of the Wuhan Institute of Virology, August 2021, that does the unthinkable – it baldly tells the truth:

    [quote]“Based on the material collected and analyzed by the Committee Minority Staff, the preponderance of evidence suggests SARS-CoV-2 was accidentally released from a Wuhan Institute of Virology laboratory sometime prior to September 12, 2019. The virus, or the viral sequence that was genetically manipulated, was likely collected in a cave in Yunnan province, PRC, between 2012 and 2015. Researchers at the WIV, officials within the CCP, and potentially American citizens directly engaged in efforts to obfuscate information related to the origins of the virus and to suppress public debate of a possible lab leak…

    This is based upon multiple pieces of evidence laid out in the report, including:

    • The sudden removal of the WIV’s virus and sample database in the middle of the night on September 12, 2019 and without explanation;

    • Safety concerns expressed by top PRC scientists in 2019 and unusually scheduled maintenance at the WIV;

    • Athletes at the Military World Games held in Wuhan in October 2019 who became sick with symptoms similar to COVID-19 both while in Wuhan and also shortly after returning to their home countries;

    • Satellite imagery of Wuhan in September and October 2019 that showed a significant uptick in the number of people at local hospitals surrounding the WIV’s headquarters, coupled with an unusually high number of patients with symptoms similar to COVID-19;

    • The installation of a People’s Liberation Army’s bioweapons expert as the head of the WIV’s Biosafety Level 4 lab (BSL-4), possibly as early as late 2019; and

    • Actions by the Chinese Communist Party and scientists working at or affiliated with the WIV to hide or coverup the type of research being conducted at there.

    Genetic Modification

    This report also lays out ample evidence that researchers at the WIV, in conjunction with U.S. scientists and funded by both the PRC government and the U.S. government, were conducting gain-of-function research on coronaviruses at the WIV, at times under BSL-2 conditions…

    Committee Minority Staff has also identified scientists who are directly tied to the WIV, and who worked on gain-of-function research in the years prior to the start of the current pandemic, who had the ability to modify genetically modify coronaviruses without leaving any trace evidence. An American scientist, Dr. Ralph Baric, assisted in creating a method to leave no trace of genetic modification as early as 2005. And as early as 2016, scientists working at the WIV were able to do the same. This makes it clear that claims by the scientific community that SARS-CoV-2 could not be man-made because it has no genetic modification markers are disingenuous….

    The Cover-Up

    In the original report, we laid out many of the ways the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and the World Health Organization (WHO) went to great lengths to cover up the initial epidemic, and how their cover-up likely turned what could have been a local outbreak into a global pandemic. The CCP detained doctors in order to silence them, and disappeared journalists who attempted to expose the truth. They destroyed lab samples, and hid the fact there was clear evidence of human-to-human transmission. And they still refuse to allow a real investigation into the origins. At the same time, the WHO, under Director General Tedros, failed to warn the world of the impending pandemic. Instead, he parroted CCP talking points, acting as a puppet of General Secretary Xi.

    In this addendum, we have uncovered further evidence of how top scientists at the WIV and Dr. Peter Daszak, an American scientist, furthered that cover-up. Their actions include bullying other scientists who questioned whether the virus could have leaked from a lab; misleading the world about how a virus can be modified without leaving a trace; and, in many, instances directly lying about the nature of the research they were conducting, as well as the low-level safety protocols they were using for that research.”[end quote]

    Given the shocking content of the Foreign Affairs Committee Report, it seems like Josh Rogin committed journalistic malpractice when he titled the article about its release, “New congressional report says covid-19 likely emerged in Wuhan months earlier than originally thought.” A more suitable gravestone could hardly be carved for a story intended to be stillborn.

    Returning to our pet peeve, we see David Feldman rabidly barking up the wrong tree, attacking the man who was revealing the truth about the most horrendous event of our lives. So let me ask a question of David: Is it politically correct to deflect Ralph’s audience’s attention from Trump’s criminal act of restarting gain-of-function research? He is responsible for the entire catastrophe. What is politically correct about covering that up?

    The question answers itself. Political correctness is all about silencing voices you don’t want to hear, and like many other bad policies that Biden is quietly inheriting along with Trump’s cold-shoulder-to-China, Biden’s administration is aiding the Chinese and Trump to conceal their wrongdoing in triggering the pandemic through gain-of-function research conducted at low-security labs. There is bipartisan agreement for this cover-up.

    You can hear the official story that David wants to shove down our progressive throats anywhere on the Internet, on mainstream news, at WHO, anywhere cover-ups are sold. But somebody like Kimbrell can only be heard on Ralph Nader Radio Hour, a point Ralph repeatedly makes when he elicits the litany of MSM outlets that have NOT interviewed his guests. So to have David, like a fair-and-balanced Charlie McCarthy, parrot blue talking points and shake his finger at the guest for imagined political correctness violations, is a serious waste of airtime that should be remedied.

    For those who want to follow up on what Kimbrell wanted to share, here are the proper citations for the four articles he listed:

    (1) The origin of COVID: Did people or nature open Pandora’s box at Wuhan?, by Nicholas Wade, Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, May 5, 2021; (2) The Lab-Leak Theory: Inside the Fight to Uncover COVID-19’s Origins, by Katherine Eban, Vanity Fair, June 3, 2021; (3) Fight Over Covid’s Origins Renews Debate on Risks of Lab Work, by Carl Zimmer and James Gorman, New York Times, June 20, 2021 (hidden behind a paywall); and (4) New congressional report says covid-19 likely emerged in Wuhan months earlier than originally thought, by Josh Rogin, Washington Post, August 2, 2021 (hidden behind a paywall).

  10. margaret walsh says:

    Can we expect the Catholic Biden to reform, expand, tamper with the current SUPREME COURT?
    Catholics stick together, how many judges are staunch Catholics? Thomas, Kavanaugh, Roberts, Gorsuch?, others?

  11. j j says:

    This guy just tried to debunk the “so called DNA/gene theory”. Absolute nonsense.

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