Leading biologist dampens his ‘smoking gun’ Covid lab leak theory | Nobel laureate David Baltimore says he overstated case, and the origins of the virus are still unknown

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Leading biologist dampens his ‘smoking gun’ Covid lab leak theory | Nobel laureate David Baltimore says he overstated case, and the origins of the virus are still unknown



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20 Comments
  1. naimastaybro says

    Dude, if there’s ever been a scientist that should avoid public overstatement, its David Baltimore.

    Edit: Read The Baltimore Case. Then you’ll understand why David Baltimore might want to chill.

  2. Hammaer96 says

    “I believe that the question of whether the sequence was put in naturally or by molecular manipulation is very hard to determine but I wouldn’t rule out either origin.”

    That’s not a “Smoking Gun” that’s an “I have no freaking clue”.

  3. Nice_Marmot_7 says

    >Baltimore’s clarification came as he was also challenged in Nature on another of his claims relating to Covid-19, that the coding of a segment found in the furin cleavage site was not usually found in viruses, with a fellow scientist pointing out the same coding was also a feature of the Sars virus.

    Shrieking loudly while ignoring basic science that he’s purportedly an expert in.

    What an asshole.

  4. RichBoomer says

    I thought most people would be skeptical about anything David Baltimore spewed after his HIV bullshit.

  5. xccr says

    I’m pretty astounded by how many people are taking the “it doesn’t even matter if it was a lab leak” road in this thread. Are you kidding me? How can the origins of a multi-million person killing pandemic not matter?

    If a lab was cavalier with a deadly respiratory virus and then a ruling party helped cover it up, that would be a spectacularly big deal in every way. It would have foreign policy implications, it would have scientific importations, it would have economic implications for the entire globe. It matters. A lot.

  6. JohnnnyOnTheSpot says

    Leak doesn’t mean unnatural…they could have been studying a collection of live viruses and this one happened to leak. Doesn’t mean malicious intent or any engineering took place.

  7. datacanbeuseful says

    He is 83. He has retired from all official positions. If we have smoking gun evidence, it will be from a biologist who is not necessarily famous but is still active in research. It will not be from him.

  8. No___ImRight says

    Personally, I’m just happy we’re allowed to even discuss the origin possibilities.

    Conspiracy theorists have ruined a lot of valuable dialogue.

    Conspiracy theories should just go back to the auto industry in bed with the air freshener companies to ensure you have to buy a new car to get the new car smell.

  9. A-Fishy-Vagina says

    Social credit score has been lowered by 920 points fyi

  10. okram2k says

    So… He was talking out of his ass and couldn’t provide any evidence to back it up?

  11. neverbetray says

    Science is supposed to be about empirical evidence and testability. It’s unwise to shoot off your mouth until your theories are on solid evidentiary grounds.

  12. Sileni says

    Common sense has left the Century.

  13. resilienceisfutile says

    I can hear it now off in the distance…

    “OMG! THEY GOT TO HIM TOO?!?”

  14. sharrrper says

    The whole discussion around a possible lab leak has been badly tainted by conspiracy idiots. I’ve got a cousin who was swearing it was a bioweapon deliberately engineered and released to tank the global economy because that benefits China… somehow. But also simultaneously claiming that masks are unnecessary, it’s not actually that dangerous, and the whole response is overblown. So it was only actually able to tank the economy because we did unnecessary things, so it wasn’t actually a useful weapon but we did it for them anyway, or something, it makes my head hurt trying to square her constantly self-contradictory positions.

    Now with these rumblings about lab leak getting some fresh run she’s all “See! I was right and you all called me crazy!” nevermind the fact that the exact origin is still far from definite and there’s a HUGE gap between “research lab leak” and “deliberately engineered and purposefully released weapon”.

    I’m happy to listen to any evidence based arguments about a lab accident, it’s not like that sort of broadly general sort of thing hasn’t happened before (killer bees for instance), but no one ever claimed lab leak was impossible, just that there wasn’t any supporting evidence for that a year ago, and even now it’s thin at best.

  15. ganked_it says

    At least the community is opening up about the likelihood that it was a lab leak. Initially those posts were banned

  16. graybeard5529 says

    If this pandemic was somehow man-created it was certainly accidental. I can’t see any reason China would want to damage the world’s economy.

    The Chinese would have damaged their major source of income –their own export markets.

  17. nootomat says

    Aka “guys, I was just shitposting” line.

  18. AidilAfham42 says

    I rather listen to Joe Rogan. Him smoking a cigar with an American flag behind him is a sure sign of scientific credibility.

  19. Yortisme says

    While the truth is putting on it’s shoes, the lie is already halfway around the world.

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