Is COVID-19 just an excuse for Bill Gates to mind control us? Probably not!
One side effect of the COVID-19 pandemic has been an exacerbation of practically every conspiracy theory in existence. People who believe in QAnon, Lizard People, New World Order bullshit, aliens, anti-vaxx crap, etc., have all imagineered ways in which the pandemic is a part of whatever their pet theory is. Even some people who may not have bought into these things previously are starting to look to them to explain what's going on, because they do, frankly, provide far more satisfying answers than reality does. This whole thing is less scary, on some level, if it's just a cover-up for something else, if people aren't actually dying, if they aren't actually risking their lives every time they go to the grocery store.
In recent weeks, previously minor conspiracies about 5G technology have gained a major foothold, leading to people in the UK actually going around setting fire to 5G cell towers. The theories are now spreading about as fast as the coronavirus itself, so we thought it would be prudent to do an explainer on what people actually believe and where it's all coming from.
Yes. Mole children.
Since the very beginnings of the Satanic Panic in the 1980s, believers in Satanic Ritual Abuse have been obsessed with tunnels. One of the most memorable features of the investigation into McMartin Preschool in Manhattan Beach, California, were reports of underground tunnels where the McMartins brought children to sexually assault them. The McMartins, of course, were found innocent after a three year trial and no one ever found any damn tunnels. Including Gloria Steinem, who helped fund an excavation of the area around the preschool searching for them.
And now, thirty-plus years later, we're back to the damn tunnels. Because the QAnon idiots have recently turned their attention to a theory that Central Park is currently teeming with mole children who had been living in underground tunnels, and who have recently been rescued by the US military, on the orders of one Donald J. Trump.
It is, perhaps, one of the stupidest theories to have come from these people, and that's saying a lot.
His QAnon PAC is running ads on 8Kun.
Jim Watkins is a middle-aged veteran who runs a pig farm in the Philippines. He is also the current owner of 8kun, formerly 8chan, home of mass shooter manifestos and the world's stupidest conspiracy theory, QAnon. Earlier this year, Watkins went and helped to start Disarm The Deep State, a QAnon PAC meant to identify candidates sympathetic to "The Great Awakening" and support them. Conveniently, the website for this PAC lists all of these politicians so that we can all know who not to support. Or, rather, which candidates to make fun of, because they're all Republicans so obviously we wouldn't be supporting them anyway.
Aside from believing in the QAnon bullshit, the PAC believes in getting rid of the Deep State, instituting term limits, getting rid of the Deep State, more government transparency, and getting rid of the Deep State. Mostly just getting rid of the Deep State, which they are very opposed to. How they plan to do that with "the Deep State" not really being a real thing, no one can tell.
STAY THE F--- HOME!
Everyone I know, probably everyone you know, is doing their best to keep at home, observing social distancing, washing their hands, making a lot of sourdough bread, etc. Some are making masks, others are participating in mutual aid societies, others are getting groceries for older and immuno-compromised people and generally doing whatever they can to not only get through this, but to help other people get through this as well.
But outside our bubbles, I guess you could say, there are those dying to tempt fate — like our friend Rev. Rodney Howard-Browne, getting arrested for trying to hold giant church services during the pandemic. Or Diamond and Silk just asking questions and suggesting that alllllllllll of the doctors could be lying about the numbers of people infected and dying, just to make Trump look bad and prevent him from getting to see churches packed full of people.
Or this dingbat saying he wants to have a Christian Woodstock on Easter.
Who's even dying of coronavirus? Let's ask these experts!
Gather 'round, don a lab coat and hold your favorite Bunsen burner tight, it's time for #CoronaChat with known science experts Diamond and Silk!
Did you learn some science in that video of Diamond and Silk? Good!
In case you cannot watch it, the information they imparted was very #publichealth. Silk said that "my president" Donald Trump wanted to open the country up by Easter. "I knew this was going to happen! He said this was going to happen!," exclaimed Diamond. "Instantaneously!" added Silk, without completing her thought. Silk told Diamond, "Now watch the numbers of deaths go up," so the media could hurt Donald Trump, by reporting a lot of new coronavirus deaths. "And! And! And!" added Silk, America is now number one for coronavirus cases! QED!
Clearly, they are just wondering if all of these deaths are a fake news scam, to destroy Trump.
Like we said, science.
TEACH THE CONTROVERSY!
Remember how Wonkette was just saying Fox News is being a little bit more careful about spreading lies about coronavirus, now that Donald Trump is pretending to take it more seriously for a minute? OK, well that lasted nine seconds, which, to be fair, is a new record for Fox.
During a panel discussion about "groupthink" about coronavirus — you know, all the things the libs obviously don't want you to know! — led by the stupidest Fox News anchor with a British accent, Steve Hilton, they discussed the possibility, based on something somebody saw on Twitter, that hospitals are ACTUALLY empty, but the Deep State doesn't want you to know that, obviously.
But the discussion was more than that, so let's dive into the stupid for a sec. Transcript courtesy of Media Matters:
Like they're gonna be convinced by SCIENTISTS
Ever since COVID-19 first appeared on the scene, rumors have abounded that it is a bioweapon created by Chinese scientists that was either purposely or accident released from a lab. Why? Because there are always people who are gonna believe that crap. I mean, hell, there are people out there who think literally everything celebrities do is an elaborate secret code for "Oh boy, I sure like eating babies!" so of course there are people who think this.
This belief was helped along by a non-peer-reviewed analysis that claimed the virus had "bits of HIV in it." While the paper was quickly debunked and retracted, the tin foil at brigade assumed this was not because it was incorrect, but because it was being "covered up." The fact that The Wuhan Institute of Virology is in close proximity to a seafood market fueled fears that it had somehow gotten out of the lab and spread from there.
However, Kristian Andersen, an infectious disease researcher from California, decided it would be best to get a bunch of scientists together and make for absolute certain that the virus was not man-made.
Via Science News:
t was clear "almost overnight" that the virus wasn't human-made, Andersen says. Anyone hoping to create a virus would need to work with already known viruses and engineer them to have desired properties.
But the SARS-CoV-2 virus has components that differ from those of previously known viruses, so they had to come from an unknown virus or viruses in nature. "Genetic data irrefutably show that SARS-CoV-2 is not derived from any previously used virus backbone," Andersen and colleagues write in the study.
"This is not a virus somebody would have conceived of and cobbled together. It has too many distinct features, some of which are counterintuitive," [Virologist Robert] Garry says. "You wouldn't do this if you were trying to make a more deadly virus."
Other scientists agree. "We see absolutely no evidence that the virus has been engineered or purposely released," says Emma Hodcroft, a molecular epidemiologist at the University of Basel in Switzerland. She was not part of Andersen's group, but is a member of a team of scientists with Nextstrain.org that is tracking small genetic changes in the coronavirus to learn more about how it is spreading around the world.
Is this going to convince conspiracy theorists? Probably not! Nothing will. Unless maybe the scientists do a YouTube video about it from a basement in an undisclosed location and tell people it's information the experts don't want them to know, or distribute the information via email forwards through their brother-in-law's best friend's accountant. In fact, that is exactly what they should do if they want to get people to believe it. It would work. We can even start rumors that certain things celebrities say and do are code words for things like "stay the fuck home" and "wash your hands."
Like for instance, clearly this isn't just a video of The Real Housewives of New York's Ramona Singer not knowing how to use a toilet brush. No! She's doing it that way to signal to the other celebrities that the scientists in China would not have been able to construct a virus to these exact specifications.
I'm telling you. I think I'm on to something here.
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In which we invent the word 'corona-lingus.' Click for proper definition and to see it used in a sentence!
Rush Limbaugh is telling your Republican parents that it's cool to go outside and play right now, because the so-called "experts" in the White House are actually just Deep State plants sent (probably by Hillary Clinton) to make Donald Trump look bad.
You know, Rush Limbaugh has advanced lung cancer and he's not dead yet -- clearly -- but if he keeps going like this, ignoring the actual science about coronavirus, he might end up killing himself at least seven minutes before God planned to, and he might take a bunch of his old-balls-ass listeners with him in the process.
And maybe none of them are okay?
During this period of coronavirus and self-isolation, we have all been asking ourselves some questions.
When the hell is this going to be over?
When will we know if the curve is starting to flatten?
Can people stop telling us to put on regular pants? (I SAY EMBRACE CAFTANS!)
Will we have enough ventilators?
Will people be more open to a national health care system like all the normal countries have after this?
Are the celebs okay?
Okay, fine, maybe that last one is just me (and the one about pants, probably, because I hate pants). But for real, one of the ways some of us have been entertaining ourselves during this period of confinement is by watching the various videos celebrities are posting to social media in order to cope with isolation. Some have been great!
Celebrities need to develop a blogger mindset.
Rapper Cardi B betook herself to Instagram to complain that she's not enjoying being locked up to avoid coronavirus any more than anyone else. She also pleaded for someone at the fucking Pentagon to get in touch with her and let her know when this will all be over and she can go out on the town again.
Thank goodness we encountered the story at military blog Task & Purpose, which gave the story the professional defense-oriented context it needed.
Although the DoD has been issuing daily updates regarding numbers of infected service members, and holding briefings on how the military is dealing with the spread of the virus, fundamental questions still remain: how long is this damn thing going to last? How bad will it get? Should we be freaking out?
Plenty of experts and non-experts disagree over all of those things, but perhaps there is some top secret document buried deep inside the defense secretary's office that holds the key.
Normally we wouldn't air the grievances of someone who thinks the military is withholding a secret timeline for ending the outbreak, but this is Cardi B and we have no idea how seriously she believes it anyway — probably not much? It's kind of awesome. Fortunately, someone recorded it:
Oh, we'll tell you. We sure will!
Today's presser was the usual, in some ways. Trump blamed people, he lied, he blamed people, he lied, and he rattled off a whole list of drugs used to treat other conditions that might maybe possibly serve to treat coronavirus at some point possibly, which was just some smoke he was blowing up America's ass like the conman he is.
Look at CBS News, taking the damn bait:
Trump said one malaria drug, chloroquine, was already approved for coronavirus treatment, and that doctors could start handing it out like candy! YAY! And then the FDA commissioner had to horn in and say actually that's not true. (BUT JARED TOLD TRUMP IT WAS TRUE, PROBABLY ALLEGEDLY! NO FAIR!)
Trump claimed reports of doctors not being able to get important things like masks were fake news, because what he's seeing on the ground is great, just great. He said if there are no masks, no ventilators, well that's just all the governors' fault, there's nothing he can possibly do to fix it.
Trump said it's a "very exciting time for medicine," that's right, OOH, EXCITING, the medical community is just out here JIZZIN' SCRUBS because they get to deal with this pandemic.
Trump bragged about the economy, or at least the economy as it was, before everybody had to go home to hide from the pandemic the Trump administration put them in danger of catching, by refusing to do jackshit about it for more than two months. He claimed the only people who weren't prepared for the pandemic (which he was always calling a pandemic, long before anybody even had heard of that word, he was calling it that) were the media, who were too busy saying fake news lies about how he is a racist.
Trump was asked if there were plans for government employees to be able to work from home or "tele-work." President Best Brain proceeded to answer a question that was not asked, about tele-medicine.
And so on. It was all bullshit, is the point.
You knew it was the gays' fault, obviously.
Fellow gays, we have bad news, and it is that coronavirus is our fault now. Granted, it's been our fault the whole time, because of how we are always gaying, and the Bible says that wherever two gays are found gaying, they are most likely scheming to make a hurricane or a rockslide or a coronavirus. It's kind of our thing, as we all secretly know.
Now, several scientific theologians have come forward to try to assess exactly how the gays caused coronavirus, with varying levels of accuracy. Pastor Steven Andrew of the USA Christian Church in California says March is "Repent of LGBT Sin Month," and that if we do that, we will be saved from coronavirus. A rabbi in Israel named Meir Mazuz says you know how the Ay-Rab countries don't have any coronavirus? (They do.) Well that's because they don't have any gays! (They also do.) Anyway, Mazuz says coronavirus is punishing the world for its gay pride parades, which makes us wonder what hot West Virginia Pride event we've been missing this whole time that's so badass that God decided to finally coronavirus the state.
Those are just a couple examples, but those guys can back the fuck off, because world's annoying-est Canadian wingnut and sometime-Fox News guest host Mark Steyn (that delectable hairball pictured above) guest-hosted the Rush Limbaugh show — you know, the place where they freak out about Pete Buttigieg tonguing his husband right on the mouth! — and explained what is really happening with the coronavirus lockdown in San Francisco. It is such a science-y explanation you are going to feel like you are literally married to Bill Nye The Science Guy by the end of this.
Also atheist. Both atheist and satanic.
With coronavirus in full swing, wingnuts are going one of two ways off the deep end. Either they're in straight-up panic mode and drinking bleach and magic colloidal silver drinks that will turn their skin blue, or they're insisting that actually, everything is fine and everyone should just go out and do whatever without changing anything, because this is all just a plot to do socialism to America and take everyone's freedom away.
Candace Owens is entirely in the latter camp, and has spent the last week or so ranting on Twitter about how the coronavirus isn't even as bad as the flu, everyone is making a big deal over nothing, and Republicans in government who are telling people to stay home or supporting initiatives like "giving people money so they can get through this time if they can't work" are turncoats who hate freedom. Because if they really loved freedom, they would let people be free to get and spread coronavirus and starve to death!
In a Periscope video on Monday, Owens went on an 18-minute rant about how it was wrong, elitist and, indeed, "atheist" and "satanic" for the government to be doing anything to keep people from dying from the coronavirus. Why? Because people die all of the time, from other things, and it's her right to put herself at risk to get the coronavirus if she wants to. Why? Because FREEDOM.
A sphincter says what?
But really, WHY IS NEWT GINGRICH? The man resigned from the House in disgrace 20 years ago, and yet he continues to blight the political landscape. This is a guy who impeached Bill Clinton for having an affair with an intern, while he himself was having an affair with Callista Bisek, a congressional aide twenty-three years his junior. He served his then wife with divorce papers in the hospital as she was dying of cancer. And now he and Callista, the current Mrs. Gingrich, represent America to the Holy See in Rome. Because, who better, amirite?
And who better than this ethical bastion to lecture us on the morality of the coronavirus pandemic. To wit, who is good?
Well, Donald Trump, obviously.
"President Trump was right to cut off travel from China as soon as it was clear how big the pandemic was going to be. He saved American lives and bought time for America to be more prepared as the pandemic developed," writes Newt on his website.
And who is the evil villain here?
Well, of course it is.
Only a few days in and the cabin fever's already affected his mind. OR HAS IT?
The world is shutting down. During times of crisis, they say the best lack all conviction, while the worst are full of passionate intensity. This brings us to former actual Milwaukee Sheriff David Clarke. The conservative Gap Band cosplayer believes America is collectively overreacting to the coronavirus because of “decades of liberal wussification." In his day, everyone walked to school eight miles both ways with an infectious disease and they liked it!
Clarke shared a piece by Clark Whelton, a former speechwriter for New York mayors Ed Koch and Rudy Giuliani. The article is called “Say Your Prayers and Take Your Chances," and while I think that worked as my wedding vows, it's not the best advice during a global pandemic.
Almost TOO normal.
Since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, there have been conspiracy theories about the coronavirus. But this week, as the CDC declared it a pandemic and people are really taking it seriously, extremely stupid conspiracy theories about the coronavirus have started to spread like, well, the coronavirus.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, most of these conspiracy theories have started in and around the QAnon community, as it is filled with people who simply do not believe in coincidences. Or, really, in anything in the whole world happening that is not related to their idiot conspiracy theory.
Even schools closing in order to keep children safe presents an opportunity for them to wax poetic about what that could mean for those who kill children in order to harvest their adrenal glands to produce adrenochrome, a substance that can be manufactured in a lab by oxidizing epinephrine, in order to get high off of it. You cannot, in fact, get high off of adrenochrome.
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