The Solidity of Fog by Luigi Russolo. 1912
The quarantine era in the vast expanses of our homeland is coming to an end. Does this mean that we can forget the coronavirus story as a kind of nightmare, that it has vanished “like a dream, like a morning fog?” I don’t think so.
During the summer period, lasting for me from the beginning of June to the beginning of September, I completely immerse myself in the work of the theatre and do nothing but deal with stage plays and only the most absolutely critical public issues. At the same time, I minimize everything else, including appearances on Central television. But I will finish this series on the coronavirus, because I consider it absolutely necessary, both morally, intellectually and politically.
On June 9th, 2020 in the capital of our Motherland, Moscow, the quarantine epic ended and soon it will be completely over in the vast expanses of our homeland. Does this mean that we can forget the coronavirus story as a kind of nightmare, that it has vanished “like a dream, like a morning fog?” I don’t think so.
First, even nightmares sometimes leave quite deep traces in the psyche. And we know that any traumatic event sometimes leaves a deep wound that requires a great deal of time to heal. If you have completed a divorce, it does not mean that even after everything related to it has been resolved, that it will not leave traces in your psyche. So, the coronavirus will live with the population of Russia and humanity for quite an indefinite time.
Secondly, what I can call COVID trauma has engendered not only psychological, but also other — social and economic consequences, not to mention the political consequences. I’m telling you, they are yet to come. So again, the coronavirus will be with us, even if it is in different guises.
Thirdly, someone already tasted the pleasures of COVID. You can lock them in houses, command them left and right, and ultimately so much more. You know, when someone starts really consuming the living blood of unlimited power, it gives rise to an insatiable thirst in this person. And I am convinced that they exist.
Fourth, and this is important, we are promised to have a second, third and fourth wave of COVID. Dr. Fauci says there will be five. And if this mysterious phenomenon called “COVID” suddenly mutates, then perhaps all the “joys” will be repeated again or even amplified.
Fifth, the disgust over incomprehensibly transforming all of life because of this very COVID, and therefore, the very possibility of such a transformation happening again and again under any pretext, will incessantly dominate the minds of those who do not like having incomprehensible games played with them (like me, for example, and, I am convinced, most of those who are watching this program). “Give us direct answers to the damned questions.”
Sixth, it is unlikely that this COVID, which suddenly appeared out of nowhere would somehow go and disappear. The consequences of the COVID frenzy are too large a scale. This means that there is a high probability that this frenzy was not only invented but holds far-reaching goals and no one has canceled those goals. They have not yet been reached. This means that those who invented this COVID will continue their game. Therefore, we will need to understand the meaning of the game tomorrow even more than yesterday.
If that is so, then we will continue to discuss the meaning of the game, which people are playing under these COVID masks. I consider the work on the political hermeneutics of COVID to be strategic. And so, I propose another installment of calm, unhurried analysis of this COVID story.
According to a plausible political parable, a number of people in Joseph Stalin’s inner circle were concerned that Stalin had a liking for Ivan Alekseyevich Likhachev, a prominent Soviet statesman, one of the organizers of the Soviet automobile industry, the director of the 1st Moscow state automobile plant, which later became known as the Likhachev Plant or ZIL.
Likhachev was not just a prominent Soviet Director, but also a real founder of the Soviet automobile industry. At one time, he was the People’s Commissar of Medium Machine-Building of the USSR. This kind of work was of the utmost importance. But Stalin’s entourage, according to the parable, was concerned not only about Likhachev’s high positions, but also about the leader’s special favor for Ivan Alekseevich. And this entourage was deeply worried that this would have some political consequences. What if Likhachev would become the successor of the leader? You never know!
And allegedly — I emphasize: allegedly! — Stalin’s inner circle decided to undermine the reputation of Stalin’s associate in terms of his interest in women.
The leader was shown photographs that, in the opinion of Stalin’s inner circle (I emphasize again that this is a plausible parable), were compromising. The leader looked at these photographs carefully and with interest. The process went on for an eerily long time. Then one of the slanderers asked Stalin, “So what are we going to do, Joseph Vissarionovich?”
Stalin allegedly said at first, as if thinking: “What are we going do, what are we going to do…” Then paused, which always terrified his colleagues, and added, “We will envy him!”
For my broadcasts not to turn into some secret service puzzle, incomprehensible to most, part of them has to be devoted to how the lives of intellectual elites in the West are organized, especially in the United States and Great Britain. That is, what one can call the context of the COVID story. But, hand over heart, I want to say that when I examine certain aspects of how these Western elites organize their lives or, for example, the problems of elite education and so on — my pathos, in this case, is like the leader’s: “What are we going to do? We’ll envy them.”
Yes, I envy the opportunities that the most outstanding educational institutions in the United States, Great Britain, or Western Europe have overall. And I would like to see even more opportunities like this in my country, since it has chosen a certain path for itself. Therefore, when I examine these opportunities, I do not do so satirically or with an air of condemnation (“God! Look at the travesty they’re making!”). I mean something else. I mean that it would not be bad to look closely and learn something from what they have. In terms of elite education, upbringing, and so on.
Yes, I think you can be envious of the way the so-called “Ivy League” is organized in the United States of America, which includes eight of the best private American Universities located in seven States in the northeast of the country.
The top three in this League are Harvard, Princeton, and Yale Universities. These are the richest of all the private American Universities. And to understand the context, we need to determine how rich they really are.
There is such a concept of an endowment, which is a donation of money or property to a nonprofit organization, like a university, which places it in a trust, and then uses the resulting investment income for a specific purpose. The endowment is an ancient institution that has existed since the time of Plato’s Academy. Plato endowed his famous Academy with capital for a special purpose. This academy was closed after nine hundred years of existence in the 6th century AD by the Emperor Justinian.
So, the endowment of Harvard University, which is part of the “Ivy League”, for 2019 was $38.3 billion dollars. The endowment of Yale University in the same year, 2019, amounted to 29.3 billion dollars.
Similar opportunities are available to the remainder of the eight most prestigious American Universities that are part of the “Ivy League”.
But there are other US Universities located not in the northeast, but in other parts of the country. And their capabilities are quite comparable to the capabilities of “The Ivy League”.
When I compare what I’m doing with conspiracy theories, it’s not about making excuses. The thing is, there are two ways of thinking. And I would like to see the second method that I am proposing (in the better or worse execution is not for me to judge) to prevail. This method is analytical, special-analytical, special-historical, and it involves examining a certain whole as the sum of many elements. And the conspiracy theorist approach involves picking one element, absolutizing it, attributing some overblown characteristics to it, and then reducing everything to this element. This is a deeply misguided way of understanding reality and thinking. I know it’s easier, and I know it’s more tempting. I understand that in some sense it even “tastes” better. But this does not give an understanding of reality. And to be able to fight, one needs to understand the difference between reality and fiction.
Yes, there are conspiracy theorists who are convinced that inside the most prestigious American elite training centers — in “The Ivy League” and the like, there is something exclusively demonic, most often called the “Skull and Bones”.
I see this version as banal and overly alarmist. For every “skull” and every” bone” there is a “rose “and a “cross”. And so on. There are so many of them that it would be strange to absolutize just one thing.
But it would be just as strange if US elite talent pools like “The Ivy League” and others would not receive guidance from anyone at all. This would mean that the US elite is devoid of agency or some kind of a core. But we clearly see it isn’t so.
And the question is not whether this core is good or evil. The thing is that it exists. And is quite intent on eating everything else. Well, you have to understand that it exists. And observe how it works, not denying its existence, which, I repeat, looks as comical as the absolutizing all the “skulls” and “bones”.
So the truth is found somewhere in the middle between the hysterical alarmist excess, or conspiracy theories (which people love so much, and from which people have to be constantly averted, because otherwise they’d submerge themselves in it until the end of time), and stubborn claims about how the US elites do not receive guidance from anyone, that each acts as he wishes, that elites are not prepared according to a certain plan, and that what can be referred to as the leading American talent pool lacks any selection. But again, it exists.
And what is the incredibly powerful United States in relation to the long-ago weakened and increasingly weakening Great Britain?
First, here it is quite appropriate to draw an analogy between a pumped-up teenager who revels in his own strength and an old man who has been studying the practice and the mystics of martial arts for a hundred years.
And secondly, there is a certain imitative effect. The United States copies the UK in everything that concerns elite reproduction, it imitates the key British educational centers, the methods of teaching in these centers and the methods of elite selection that the British aristocracy has carried out over centuries. At the same time, of course, the Americans can’t stand Great Britain ever since the War for Independence. And this is a very stable trend.
But it’s a jealous dislike. And it is a small and faintly perceptible part of US-UK relations. The main and most declared part of this relationship, on the other hand, is American imitation. Plus, a British acquiescence in following the formal course of the United States. Plus, the very subtle and cunning British manipulation of this course. One should tell a teenager, “Yes, Yes, we are with you! We’ll go wherever you want! But have you thought about how best to proceed? Oh my, a road block! Why don’t we go over here instead?” This is all happening to the full degree.
So, the equivalent of the US Ivy League is an association of British Universities, called the Russell Group. This group includes 24 of the most prestigious Universities in the UK, including the renowned Oxford and Cambridge Universities.
Once again, we are dealing with huge endowments which give this intellectual community the utmost degree of control over everything that concerns funding certain research. It’s not just a question of whether or not they have these funds. They have grants and other sources of funding. They have contracts and many other things. This is a huge financial-intellectual, financial-political, financial-social, and financial-anthropological machine that produces what we then deal with. In other words, here again, we are not talking about billions or tens of billions, but hundreds of billions of dollars. That is, about the kind of money that already gives off the scent of power. And power is always something more than just money.
We have seen again, through the COVID story, that those with the power get huge amounts of funding in times of crisis. And those without power get bankruptcy, and those with power buy up the property of those without it. We have seen this again, and we saw it in previous years. Lehman Brothers lost, but Goldman Sachs won. Why? It’s clear why. Some got help, because they were close to the power structure, while others found themselves further away. That’s it. It’s a matter of life and death.
The Russell Group, which has the same significance in the UK as the Ivy League in the United States, along with other Universities, includes the educational institution that will be of most interest to us during this broadcast. It’s called Imperial College London.
Moreover, Imperial College London is not only part of the fairly broad Russell Group. It is part of the so-called Golden Triangle of Universities. The two corners of this Triangle are the city of Cambridge with its Cambridge University and the city of Oxford with its Oxford University. And the third corner is London, which is home to the three colleges of the University of London and this Imperial College of London, which I cannot help but discuss in connection with the COVID story. Because it is extremely important in connection to this story, and I will prove it. At the same time, the Imperial College has a special meaning in this Golden Triangle. Otherwise, it would not stand out from among the family of London’s super-privileged colleges. And most certainly, it stands out.
In 2019, Imperial College London ranked eighth in the list of the top two hundred Universities in the world. So, this is far from a minor factor in what constitutes the cream of the crop among the prestigious educational institutions that form the elite.
And now a necessary, though seemingly unimportant detail.
In June 2004, Imperial College London opened its own Business school, which was named after a certain Gary Tanaka. Who is Gary Tanaka? He is a Japanese man, who was born in the United States during World War II. Gary Tanaka was born in a concentration camp that the US set up for all of the Japanese, who happened to live on its territory. Tanaka graduated from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and then graduated from the same Imperial College London, to understand the role of which I diverted the viewer’s attention from COVID-19, discussing the Ivy League, the Russell Group, and the Golden Triangle.
At the moment, I can’t say that the Tanaka family, and above all its head, who has masterfully minimized the costs of his time in prison, are directly related to the Imperial College London’s activities associated with the COVID-19 frenzy, though the Imperial College London’s activities played a very significant, even an exceptional role in the COVID epic. But just in case, I will inform the viewer about the intertwined fates of Mr. Tanaka and Imperial College London. At the same time, I neither want to exaggerate the extent of this intertwining, nor to take it beyond the scope of my consideration.
Let’s start with the fact that Gary Tanaka earned his PhD degree in mathematics at the Imperial College London. But Tanaka and his sons, Mark and Michael, were not at all engaged in mathematics, but rather in investing in various Internet ventures.
Gary Tanaka became famous as a co-founder of the investment company Amerindo Investment Advisors. What is this company famous for?
On the one hand, with its successful investments in the Internet-giant Yahoo!.
On the other hand, it got its hands particularly dirty during the so-called dot-com boom, that is, the inflating of the stock prices of Internet companies, which gave rise to the collapse of these very peculiarly inflated bubbles.
When the bubbles burst, many people suffered as a result. But the story of Tanaka and his partner Alberto Vilar was the most scandalous, because Tanaka and Vilar were convicted of fraud, under multiple charges.
In May 2005, less than a year after the grand opening of the Tanaka Business School at Imperial College London (and Tanaka donated 27 million pounds to the establishment of this business school), Tanaka and Vilar were arrested. The reason for the arrest was one of the long-time clients of Amerindo Investment accusing Tanaka and Vilar of stealing $5 million from her.
In 2006, they were faced with charges that when Amerindo Investment shares fell in value, the partners stole money from clients to pay their bills. Prosecutors alleged that Amerindo invested in risky stocks against the wishes of its clients, offering investors a fictitious product in fixed-rate deposits.
Gary Tanaka was acquitted of 9 of the 12 charges. However, the remaining three charges were enough for the court to sentence Tanaka to five years in prison in 2010. And in 2014, the court added another year to these five years after an appeal.
I do not have the opportunity now of examining in detail how Tanaka’s fraudulent activities were connected to his philanthropic gesture to his Alma mater, Imperial College London, which managed to open its own business school thanks to Tanaka. But the fact that there is the connection is obvious enough. There is no place for random people in this kind of venture! In order to do what he did, Tanaka had to be a not just any person for Imperial College London. And it’s not enough that he studied there; in the grand scheme of things it means nothing. Everything is viewed through very different optical systems that recognize what kind of people can have their donations accepted, and even have a business school named after them, and where it would be better to be careful. I emphasize, The Imperial College London is too prestigious. And it is to show this that I have temporarily diverted your attention from the immediate details of what is called the COVID-19 story.
In 2008, the business school at Imperial College London, which was built with dubious money from Tanaka, changed its name from the Tanaka Business School (not everyone who gives donations has the right to have a certain structure that used this money named after him) to the Imperial College Business School. The renaming was most likely due to Tanaka’s failure to fully evade all the fraud charges. Although Imperial College, of course, denied that this was the reason for the renaming.
As the London student newspaper reported in September 2008, “The reversal has sparked speculation that Imperial may be trying to disassociate itself from Dr. Tanaka, who was charged with fraud in 2005. A spokesman for Imperial said there was no link between the charges and the decision.”
Well, first, of course, there is a connection. Second, it will never be advertised. And third, when they say that, they emphasize the role of Dr. Tanaka. They say, “Even in these conditions, we will not detach ourselves from him. Because any detachment does us harm, and he is a person from whom it is not desirable to detach. He is a man with a future.”
After being released, Tanaka returned to business and his famous racing stables. In any case — there is no reason to nullify the connection between Imperial College London and the Tanaka family. Is it a big connection? And does it have anything to do with COVID – that’s a different issue. But even if the story with Tanaka is just a note in the margins of my research (and I’m starting from this, I emphasize – just starting), such a note is worthy of consideration, and of course, it is reliable. And with the COVID story I assign special importance to reliability.
Now let’s discuss why the topic of Imperial College London requires our close attention. And we need to direct our attention to it even before we begin to deal with the initiative called the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI). After all, I ended the previous broadcast mentioning this very CEPI, and I alluded to its importance. Well, I still remember that. I had to first start with this different topic, to make the CEPI story more distinct.
I will not venture to say that COVID-19 itself was raised in the flasks of this or that institution. I can suppose that, I can consider it a plausible hypothesis, but nothing more. But there is no doubt that Imperial College London was a flask, where the initiatives related not only to COVID, by a certain Ferguson, Anderson and other organizers of the “COVID” frenzy received support, this point is clearly obvious to anyone who seriously analyzes this “COVID” frenzy.
Let’s start with a person named Anderson.
Roy Malcolm Anderson was born in 1947.
In 1968, he was awarded a Bachelor of Science degree in Zoology at Imperial College, which at that time was part of the University of London.
At Imperial College, Anderson received his PhD in 1971 in the field of parasitology. Writing his thesis entitled “A quantitative ecological study of the helminth parasites of the bream (Abramis brama).”
After receiving his degree in 1971, Anderson became an IBM biomathematics research fellow at Oxford and worked there until 1973.
From 1973 to 1977, Anderson was a lecturer in parasitology at King’s College London.
By 1977, he moved to Imperial College London and lectured on parasitology at that institution until 1982.
In 1982, the 35-year old Anderson became the youngest Professor at Imperial College London, holding his professorship in the field of parasitic ecology.
Quickly elevating his career in 1984, he became head of the Department of Biology at Imperial College.
Only two short years later in 1986, Anderson was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society (equivalent to the Russian Academy of Sciences).
In 1989 Anderson began working with the Wellcome Trust, which co-founded CEPI in 2017.
In 1989, the Wellcome Trust established the so-called Wellcome Centre for Parasite Infections at Imperial College London, which Anderson became the director of.
In 1991, Anderson’s ties with the Wellcome Trust were further strengthened when he became one of its Trustees (at that time, the Board of Trustees consisted of individuals). And when the legal entity Wellcome Trust Limited was established in 1992 as the unified Trustee entity of the Wellcome Trust, Anderson and the other Trustees joined the Board of Governors, where Anderson remained until 2000.
And now we will leave Sir Roy Malcolm Anderson for a moment to become acquainted with what this Wellcome Trust is all about.
First of all, this is the organization that in 2017, along with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, a consortium of a number of countries, and several others, co-founded of the very CEPI that we are most interested in. So, we have now gotten to CEPI, one of the founders of which was this Wellcome Trust. Why are we so particularly interested in CEPI? Because CEPI was previously assigned the lead role in creating the COVID-19 vaccine. This was just a given, like the air we breathe. Even though COVID itself was not even yet a reality, the role of CEPI was already defined.
But we can hardly understand what CEPI is until the whole set of far-reaching intricacies that accompanied the appearance of CEPI is discussed in our translated analytical picture.
For having such a multifactorial translational image, you should be patient and concentrate on the co-founders of CEPI, such as the Wellcome Trust.
Here is a brief history of this organization, whose leadership for almost a decade included the organizer of a number of unjustified alarmist infectious frenzies (indeed a multitude of frenzies, as we will see soon), the last of which, but not the only one, is the “COVID” frenzy, this very Sir Roy Malcolm Anderson.
So, what is the Wellcome Trust that this Anderson is so strongly associated with?
Once upon a time there was a certain Sir Henry Solomon Wellcome who was an American-born British entrepreneur.
In 1880, this same Wellcome, along with his colleague Silas Burroughs, founded the pharmaceutical company Burroughs Wellcome & Co.
This initiative was not the only belonging to sir Henry. And in 1924, he founded the Welcome Foundation, a holding company to combine all his assets under a single corporate roof.
In 1936, this outstanding pharmacist died. Wellcome was a practical man, and remained practical until his death. Before his death, he decided to set up a philanthropic organization, the Wellcome Trust. The Wellcome Trust became the Wellcome Foundation’s sole stakeholder. According to sir Henry’s decision, the Wellcome Trust was to fund medical research from the profits of its pharmaceutical business.
And then everything began to develop the following way.
For the first two decades, that is, until 1952, the Wellcome Trust existed modestly. But in the period from 1952 to 1986, it managed to increase its holdings fifty times — from 10 to 500 million pounds. To a large extent, this jump was due to the fact that the Wellcome Trust funded the creation of new drugs, and a number of its investments were successful.
In 1986, the Wellcome Foundation holding company entered the stock market under the name Wellcome PLC. Recall that until this moment, the sole stakeholder of the Wellcome Foundation was the Wellcome Trust charitable foundation.
But in 1986, the Wellcome Trust sold 25% of its shares in the Welcome Foundation holding company. In 1992, another 35% of the shares were sold. And in 1995, the Wellcome Trust sold its remaining 40% stake in Wellcome PLC to the pharmaceutical company Glaxo. As a result, Glaxo Wellcome was formed, and the Wellcome Trust received a portion of this company’s shares.
By the beginning of the 21st century, as a result of the merger of Glaxo Wellcome and SmithKline Веесham a monster called GlaxoSmithKline, abbreviated GSK, was born.
In order to diversify its investments, Wellcome Trust sold 100 million shares of GSK in 2001 for 1 billion 780 thousand pounds, retaining a “modest” position of 50 million shares.
GSK is not exactly the largest company, but it is not a small one. GSK’s market capitalization comes in at just 82.8 billion pounds, or $105 billion.
When I say “just”, I’m not completely joking. Because there are pharmaceutical monsters with incomparably greater capitalization. But even this capitalization, as you can understand, is not small.
But it’s not about capitalization. Or not only capitalization. GSK specializes in creating vaccines, among other things. So, when we say that we will be saved by this very CEPI, among the founders of which is the Wellcome Trust, which is closely linked to GSK, does it not mean that we will be saved by GSK? This is a bold though quite reliable hypothesis as we will see later. And if so, let’s deal further with GSK and others.
So, GSK specializes in creating vaccines, among other things. And it offers its products with excessive vigor. This does not lead from my insinuations, but from the undoubtable fact that in 2012 GSK plead guilty to multiple crimes. Crimes including providing false or incomplete information when marketing diabetes drugs, antidepressants, and other pharmaceutical products.
Having plead guilty to such crimes (and pleading guilty is not done lightly), the company paid a whopping $3 billion dollars. Think about it, this is a very rich company, and it has to pay insane amounts of money. Better not to plead guilty at all. So how badly did this company get caught red-handed? What kind of a pro are they at aggressive illegal pharmaceutical marketing tactics? It doesn’t matter if it’s diabetes or COVID. When someone pushes a product, they push everything, if that’s their nature. And that is the nature of this company. GSK pushing its products is now recognized as the largest case of fraud in the health care and pharmaceutical industries. This is the GSK born of the Wellcome Trust, where Mr. Anderson and others were thriving at the time, but they were not the only ones thriving, the Imperial College London was as well. That is how famous they are, how aggressive, how combative, and so on.
Some may think that I am too impulsive in making connections between the past and the present. But I haven’t even made any connections yet. I am simply discussing the past so that it is not completely disconnected from the future. And ultimately, if a company with a $100 billion capitalization is a champion in the field of fraudulent activities for illegally marketing pharmaceutical products and other similar practices, if this company’s leadership included Mr. Anderson, who both promoted the COVID-19 panic, and established CEPI together with the Foundation that was related to this company, then you have to agree, that this already is not small change.
In September 2019, the value of Wellcome Trust’s assets exceeded $36 billion.
And now this financial fist, this armored fist – which, as we can see, has nothing philanthropic about its aims, and can make money quickly, which is very important — is focused on what? To gain positions in the field of vaccinations. New drugs generally speaking and vaccines as the primary focus.
According to all the official data, the Wellcome Trust is one of the largest charitable foundations in terms of its financial capabilities. It is associated with the very peculiar pharmaceutical giant GSK, which not at all charitable, but it is responsible for committing large-scale fraud. And who was part of the Wellcome Trust’s leadership for many years? Mr. Anderson, who commissioned Mr. Ferguson to incite pseudo-mathematical epidemic alarmism.
Let’s go back to Anderson’s biography.
So, in 1992, Anderson joined the Board of Governors of Wellcome Trust Limited and was one of the Governors until 2000.
In 1993, Anderson left Imperial College London and resigned as head of the Department of Biology, as well as the Director of the Wellcome Center for Parasite Infections, and then he moved to Oxford.
He was appointed head of the Department of Zoology at Oxford, and lectured at Merton College — one of the oldest colleges in Oxford, founded in the thirteenth century by the distinguished English nobleman Walter de Merton, Bishop of Rochester, who served as Chancellor under Kings Henry III and Edward I, and then decided to devote himself to teaching and educating the English elite.
Anderson’s move to the University of Oxford led to the creation of the Wellcome Center for the Epidemiology of Infectious Disease at the University. In the same year, 1993, Anderson became head of the center. And in 1994, the center received five major grants from the Wellcome Trust. As we remember, Anderson was at that time a member of the Wellcome Trust’s Board of Governors.
In 1998, Anderson was replaced as head of the Department of Zoology by Paul Harvey-let’s remember this name. At the same time, Anderson continued to work at Merton College as a researcher. He also continued to lead the Wellcome Center for the Epidemiology of Infectious Disease.
But in 2000, Anderson’s career took a sharp turn — he had to resign because of a scandal from his Oxford Department, from the post of Director of the Wellcome Center for Infectious Disease Epidemiology, and from the Board of Governors of the Wellcome Trust.
Anderson himself actually started the scandal, claiming that a colleague named Sunetra Gupta, who received a position at Oxford, allegedly got this position due to an inappropriate relationship with Paul Harvey — Anderson’s successor as head of the Department of Zoology at the University of Oxford.
It is not known whether Anderson wanted to compromise Harvey and get him to resign in order to regain the post himself, or whether he was motivated by something else. In any case, his attack on Gupta and Harvey resulted in two internal investigations.
In the first investigation, launched by the University of Oxford, focused on whether Anderson had slandered Gupta, the second concerned Anderson’s business interests. And this investigation involved not only Oxford, but also the Wellcome Trust. As a result, Oxford and the Wellcome Trust concluded that Anderson had concealed information about the commercial activities of the biomedical consulting company he founded, the International Biomedical and Health Sciences Consortium (IBHSC), which created a conflict of interest for him as an Oxford professor and as a member of the Wellcome Trust’s Board of Governors.
“The Wellcome Trust can rightly claim to be the saviour of British biomedicine. Without its largesse, Britain would almost certainly have ended the 1990s as a second-rate biomedical power. Instead, labs benefiting from Wellcome funding have prospered scientifically, and the trust’s emphasis on improving salaries and career structure for researchers has shamed the UK government into action.
… some of the trust’s friends are urging it to consider internal reforms to safeguard its reputation. In some ways, the Wellcome Trust is falling victim to its own success. Through shrewd management of its investments, the trust’s spending power and influence have grown phenomenally over the past eight years. But governing structures and procedures that were adequate for a modest-sized charity may not be appropriate for a behemoth that — by working with government as an equal partner — helps direct national science policy.”
Nature Medicine claims that internal investigations polarized the University of Oxford. “There [was] a destructive series of votes,” recalls Neil Ferguson, then at Oxford’s Zoology department. “Zoology returned a vote of no-confidence in Roy, whereas most of the center staff voted in his confidence – the atmosphere was dreadful.”
Forced by scandal to leave Oxford University, losing his position on the Wellcome Trust Board of Governors, infectious disease expert Roy Anderson seemed destined to become a persona non grata in the scientific community. However, his stature in the international infectious disease community remained undiminished.
According to Simon Levin, a renowned evolutionary biologist and biomathematician at Princeton University, Anderson has stimulated the field both through his training of a new generation of scientists and through his international leadership.
“Anderson has been one of the most important forces for creating entirely new and powerful ways to study the dynamics of disease,” Levin says. “His mathematical approaches…have served to revolutionize the subject.”
Despite the scandal, Anderson evaded the role of an outcast not only in the international scientific community, but also at home in the UK.
After leaving Oxford, he soon moved to the new Department of Infectious Disease Epidemiology at Imperial College London. He was followed by many colleagues from the University of Oxford.
As the Guardian reported on September 2, 2000, professor Brian Spratt who specializes in bacterial infections and professor of virology Geoff Smith left with Anderson. These professors brought about 80 researchers from Oxford to London. More than £7 million in research grants from the Wellcome Trust also left with them. “Eighty people will make a big dent in Oxford’s reputation and research income,” said one of those who made the move.
An echo of this long-standing conflict is the current bitter rivalry between the Oxford research group, a key member of which is Professor of Theoretical Epidemiology Sunetra Gupta, and the Imperial College London group, whose leaders are Ferguson and Anderson.
Both groups created models for predicting the development of the COVID situation. And these models have fundamental differences.
First of all, Imperial College introduces different fatality rates for different age groups, ranging from 0.002% (two thousandths of a percent) for children under 10 to 9.3% for people over 80.
The Oxford model uses a much lower infection fatality rate of 0.14%.
In addition, Oxford and Imperial College are looking for answers to different questions.
The Imperial College model answers the question of how mitigation and suppression strategies will affect the COVID-19 epidemic curve.
And the Oxford model answers the question: “Has COVID-19 already spread across a proportion of the population?”
And the answer is that “ongoing epidemics in the UK and Italy started at least a month before the first reported death and have already led to the accumulation of significant levels of herd immunity in both countries.”
Accordingly, the Oxford model lacks the alarmism of the Ferguson — Anderson model.
When the foot-and-mouth disease epidemic began in the UK in 2001, the government relied heavily on Anderson’s expertise in the mathematical modelling of epidemics. We will discuss this story in detail later.
In 2003, Anderson joined the Scientific Board of Grand Challenges in Global Health (GCGH). Recall that the initiator of the creation of GCGH and one of the co-founders was the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
From October 2004 to September 2007, Anderson worked as Chief Scientific Adviser at the UK Ministry of Defense.
In 2006, during the celebration of the 80th birthday of the British Queen Elizabeth II, Anderson was knighted.
On October 1st, 2007, Anderson joined the Board of GSK, where he became an independent Non-Executive Director and expert in science and medicine. Anderson served on the GSK board until 2018. In other words, at CEPI’s inception, he was a member of the Board.
In 2008, Anderson became Rector of Imperial College London. One of the ideas that he actively promoted as Rector was the creation of a branch of Imperial College abroad. According to The Independent, the area Anderson found most attractive and was most interested in was the Persian Gulf, and above all Abu Dhabi (in the United Arab Emirates) and Qatar. Anderson thought that if Imperial were to set up in Qatar, it should concentrate on a single subject such as engineering linked to materials, energy or gas and oil exploration.
But Imperial had its eye on other countries, notably China and India. And it was also engaged in negotiations with institutions in Delhi, Mumbai and Kolkata about how to begin establishing a medical school in India.
As the Independent noted, “Anderson is looking to make Imperial more independent of government by engaging in some astute commercial activity.”
Anderson did not hold the position of a Rector for long, only a year and a half. His departure from the post of Rector in November 2009 came as a surprise to many. The official motivation for leaving was “the desire to return to the primary concern, research interest into global health”
However the Lancet magazine calls Andersen’s departure a “palace coup”: “Imperial insiders point to a palace-style coup as being behind his departure, whereby council governors were pressured to act following complaints about Anderson’s management style.”
Anderson is a proponent of privatizing elite state Universities and sharply increasing their tuition. To date, the list of Roy Anderson’s regalia is as follows. He is:
- Professor of Infectious Disease Epidemiology at the School of Public Health (Imperial College London School of Medicine);
- Director of the Centre for Neglected Tropical Disease Research
- Trustee of the Natural History Museum;
- Member of the Singapore National Research Foundation Fellowship Board;
- Member of the International Advisory Committee of Thailand
- Member of the Malaysian Biotechnology Advisory Board;
- Chairman of the international consulting firm Oriole Global Health;
*, and is a member of the International Advisory Board of the consulting company Hakluyt and Company Ltd. The Times writes about this company that it is a private British Intelligence Agency, “whose staff almost entirely consists of former officers of the intelligence services.”
Now let’s turn to another figure closely associated with Anderson — Neil Ferguson.
And now let’s move on to another figure closely associated with Anderson – Neil Ferguson.
He studied at two Oxford colleges.
In the first of them – Lady Margaret Hall College – he studied theoretical physics from 1987 to 1990, and at the end of this stage of training he received a master’s degree.
Then he continued his theoretical physics studies at another Oxford college, Linacre College, where he studied from 1990 to 1994. In 1994, Neil Ferguson defended his thesis on “Continuous interpolations from crystalline to dynamically triangulated random surfaces”. His research advisor was Professor John Wheater, who worked in the Oxford University Department of Physics. As Wheater told Business Insider, “Neil was a pleasure to supervise. He was one of my best graduate students. He’s a very smart guy, and he worked very hard”.
Many expected that Ferguson would continue his physics studies. However, after defending his thesis he did not go into physics, but changed this discipline to mathematical biology specializing in epidemiology. Why? Because Ferguson caught the eye of Sir Roy Malcolm Anderson, whom we have already discussed.
Anderson himself was involved in both zoology and infectious diseases. But he recruited Ferguson as a mathematician, who had to shift from interpolation of triangulated random surfaces to the interpolation and extrapolation of everything related to the development of infectious diseases.
Ferguson did not receive any education in the field of forecasting disease, epidemics and so on. Although, of course, being a very nimble fellow, he quickly began to get up to speed after being recruited by Anderson, who commissioned Mr. Ferguson for a pseudo-mathematical epidemic alarmism.
Anderson and Ferguson conducted this alarmism quite consistently. All the time – since 1996, when alarmism arose around the so-called mad cow disease – we have been dealing with the same thing. The Imperial College London website has many references to it. I repeat, not some low-brow tabloids, but on the very website of Imperial College London.
Along with this, Ferguson has been publishing with extraordinary fruitfulness in the Proceedings of the US National Academy of Sciences. Incidentally, this is the leading national organization of the United States, which was founded in 1863 by an act of Congress. President Abraham Lincoln himself signed the Act. The Academy, as stated on its website, aims to provide the nation with independent, objective opinions on issues related to science and technology. It founded the National Academy of Engineering in 1964. And in 1970 – the National Academy of Medicine. Now the three academies work as one. And this whole is called the National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine.
Time and again, the US Congress and the White House issue laws and regulations confirming the unique role of this triune whole, the medical part of which has opened its arms to the author of the COVID madness, Mr. Ferguson. Who, I emphasize once again, has no direct relation to medicine, but forecasts everything. And not only without breaking, but strengthening ties with Anderson, who does have a direct relation to medicine.
In 2001, Ferguson and Anderson sparked a panic around foot-and-mouth disease in the UK. 19 years remained until COVID.
In 2002, Mr. Ferguson received an award for this work – which was totally substandard and produced results that had nothing to do with reality – what kind of award would you think? The Order of the British Empire.
What did he receive such a high award for? For proposing to slaughter not only the cattle that were infected with the virus, but also the cattle that were on neighboring farms, even if they had no signs of infection. There is no infection, but slaughter the cattle anyway.
Ferguson and Anderson stated that “extensive culling is sadly the only option for controlling the current British epidemic, and it is essential that the control measures now in place be maintained as case numbers decline to ensure eradication.”
Later, in 2006 and 2011, two reports were issued by scientists from different Universities stating that the model did not reflect the real picture of the epidemic.
Who brought this up? Who started these revelations, which, by the way, are more than convincing? Some marginalized, amateur critic who is not responsible for anything and does not understand anything about what is happening? No. The World Organization for Animal Health brought it up.
The history of this organization shows that it is highly competent. Back in 1924, through an international agreement, the International Office for Epizootics, meaning for animal diseases, was established. It was called Office International des Epizooties (OIE). Later, in May 2003, the Office became the World Organization for Animal Health, but retained its historical name of OIE.
The World Trade Organization recognized the OIE as a global reference center of expertise. The OIE publishes the journal Revue scientifique et technique (REV SCI TECH OIE), which in 2006 published a report by Richard Kitching, Michael Thrusfield and Nicholas Taylor, which eviscerated Anderson and Ferguson’s schemes. The report was entitled “Use and abuse of mathematical models: an illustration from the 2001 foot and mouth disease epidemic in the United Kingdom.”
The report stated that “the model that Ferguson et al. presented to the Science Group in late March probably had the most influence on early policy decisions, specifically, the introduction of the pre-emptive contiguous culling policy.”
At the same time, according to scientists, “the models were not fit for the purpose of predicting the course of the epidemic and the effects of control measures” because they did not take into account a number of factors, such as the speed at which the epidemic spread among different species and the species composition of animals on farms. The authors insisted that the Ferguson model provoked a devastating excess of preemptive slaughter.
I repeat once again – this all unfolded in 2001, 19 years before COVID. They are repeat offenders with experience in organizing frenzies.
Therefore, the question of who benefited from this slaughter is quite legitimate. Cattle are grown in order to sell meat to the consumer. If British farmers do not sell the meat to the British consumer, then someone will sell it. Because the British consumer eats meat. So, who sells it? Whose meat replaces the meat of cattle slaughtered in Britain on the recommendation of Ferguson and Anderson? Which foreign competitor should have been excited over the elimination of its British competitor who had an advantage on the domestic market (which is natural)? And how does excessiveness of the forecast relate to such competition? It can’ t help but be connected, if the forecast is blatantly exaggerated! In whose interests did Ferguson and Anderson’s alarmist duo work, then? Moreover, Anderson’s leading role in this duo is obvious. Anderson, as opposed to Ferguson, deals with big business in that very Wellcome Trust, which would then merge in ecstasy with Gates and others to spawn CEPI – the global “savior” from COVID.
But it is one thing to slaughter cattle, and another thing to devastate the world economy and Man. So what? Was killing British cattle a rehearsal for COVID, to then kill the world economy and to do something peculiar to Man?
The same journal published an article by another group of authoritative scientists in 2011. The authors of this report were Leonard Mansley, Alex Donaldson, Michael Thrusfield, and Naomi Honhold. The report is entitled “Destructive tension…” (remember this title, for that is exactly what COVID is demonstrating!) “Destructive tension: mathematics versus experience – the progress and control of the 2001 foot and mouth disease epidemic in Great Britain”
In this report, both scientists working in related fields and veterinary specialists (such as Alex Donaldson from the University of Edinburgh) analyzed the experience in fighting the epidemic and concluded that the government had ordered millions of animals to be slaughtered based on “completely incorrect” modeling. The report said (people had managed to figure it out, they had conducted their comparative studies, and they had worked long hours to present their materials to society):
“The mathematical models (meaning Anderson and Ferguson’s models – SK) were, at best, crude estimations that could not differentiate risk between farms and, at worst, inaccurate representations of the epidemiology of FMD. Ultimately, the models neither correctly predicted the course and duration of the epidemic nor the effectiveness of the traditional control measures put in place nor the novel ones proposed. Thus, they failed the acid tests of refutedness, testedness and usefulness. The rush to embrace non-validated mathematical models in policy-making, presented without balancing their apparent numerical certainty against the degree of improbable biological assumptions they contained, resulted in traditional methods proven by generations of veterinarians being neglected. As Kitching et al. put it: ‘The UK experience provides a salutary warning of how models can be abused in the interest of scientific opportunism’.”
Unfortunately, this experience was not taken into account.
It continues as follows:
The consequences of the contiguous cull policy were severe. Not only were over a million animals culled on more than 3,000 farms (astounding scales! – SK), but further problems were generated, including (pay close attention here! Does what follows remind you of anything? – SK):
“– the diversion of scarce resources (I spoke previously about the diversion of resources because of COVID-19 from heart and cancer care – SK) from the high-priority tasks of IP (infected premises – SK) and DC (dangerous contact – SK) tracing…”
They didn’t do any tracing. Instead, they just sent all the animals to slaughter – that’s all. In the context of today’s COVID situation, instead of identifying people who were infected, everyone was just sent to lockdown, and that’s okay.
“– a huge increase in the number of carcasses awaiting disposal”
They simply filled everything with these millions of carcasses, which incidentally, can cause infection on their own if they begin to rot.
“– an exponential increase in the movements of vehicles and personnel engaged in the cull in the protection zones, perhaps facilitating local spread”
In other words, the vehicles and personnel involved in cattle disposal began to move so quickly that they began to infect more cattle. It’s just like how they filled some makeshift hospitals to such an extent that they began to spread the infection.
“– reduced cooperation from farmers (sometimes leading to a conscious or unconscious delay in reporting suspicion for fear of the consequences on neighbours)…”
If an outbreak focus was found, the cattle were culled within a three-kilometer radius… It’s a lot like someone being afraid of seeking medical attention, because he would be admitted as suspicious for having COVID-19 into a makeshift hospital, where he would actually get infected. And at the same time, they will work to “trace his contacts” … Is there no analogy? I think it’s clear.
“– a hugely demoralising effect on the British population in general and among farmers in particular”
Does this not remind you of anything? It has its own consequences.
“– a major loss of epidemiological data”
That is, if there was a normal response to foot-and-mouth disease, one could analyze and understand something in the process. But here they just slaughtered all the cattle – and there could be no understanding.
But that’s not all.
On March 28, 2020, The Daily Mail quotes Professor Michael Thrusfield, one of the co-authors of the articles I cited above. Michael Thrusfield, who represents the University of Edinburgh, an educational institution no less reputable than Imperial College London, claims that during the 2001 foot-and-mouth disease epidemic, more than 6 million animals were slaughtered because of Neil Ferguson’s (and therefore Anderson’s) model and recommendations, leaving “rural Britain economically devastated.”
This is already serious. In a language of a similar but different era and another set of principles for evaluation, this was called treason. Unjustified economic disruption and so on. This would lead not to being awarded the Order of the British Empire, but to something very different. When people like these are knighted, one has to wonder why. Because these 6 million animals were worth something, they were slaughtered, and something else was substituted?
In an interview with The Telegraph on the same day, March 28, 2020, Professor Thrusfield said that this episode with foot-and-mouth disease was a warning about the limitations of mathematical modelling, and that he had “déjà vu when he read Mr Ferguson’s Imperial College paper on coronavirus”
But if only it all came down to throwing a shaky bridge from 2001 to 2020! Then one could say that competitors (from the University of Edinburgh or elsewhere) are demonizing Ferguson. But before COVID-19, Ferguson and Anderson made peculiar predictions not only in 2001.
Having disgraced themselves in 2001 and having received the Order of the British Empire for this, as well as corresponding promotions, which cannot help but arouse our strategic bewilderment, Ferguson and his colleagues published a prognostic article on May 14, 2004 entitled “Public Health Risk from the Avian H5N1 Influenza Epidemic.”
The article published in the June 2004 issue of the journal Science, with a list of authors including, of course, Mr. Ferguson and Mr. Anderson, states that an epidemic among birds may provoke a global pandemic of a highly pathogenic human virus. That the viral transmissibility is growing. And that this should be counteracted with extreme methods.
Observe the current yelling about the coronavirus’ growing transmissibility. How common and frightening this word has become. It’s like they say, hide under the table, and keep your head down, for transmissibility is coming after you! Well, it is nothing new, for this appeared 16 years ago. And not in connection with cattle anymore, but with birds. Does this not give rise to any mournful reflections on the nature of what is happening?
In 2004, they said that to save the birds from viral transmissibility, we need to issue global warnings and implement global strict control measures.
Well, it is impossible not to see that the preparation for a COVID hysteria is in full swing! And that the same Ferguson – Anderson tandem is engaged in spreading this hysteria around COVID, which will ravage the global economy, as well as having certain adverse effects on people.
Of course, Ferguson is a pawn just like Gates. Of course, he has Anderson, Imperial College London, the Wellcome Trust, and many others standing behind his back. But it is always possible to trace the big strategy by looking at how those whom the strategists have trusted to be their pawns behave. Including Gates, I repeat. A pawn in play, though a pawn, is a very important pawn. And it is very indicative and revealing, through which much can be tracked. Because it becomes exposed through its work at the front.
And so, the hysteria around foot-and-mouth disease is joined by the hysteria around the avian flu. Once again, we are dealing with blatantly alarmist and foul-smelling gibberish, the malign qualities of which not only do nothing to diminish the capabilities of its creators, but also leads to their further elevation.
Ferguson already has two pieces of gibberish to his credit, with the last one in 2004.
And in 2007, Ferguson, who had already shown himself in a telling way in the field of false forecasts for two epidemics, heads Center for Global Infectious Disease Analysis (formerly the Center for Outbreak Analysis and Modeling). Ferguson himself is the founder of this Center.
One could say what does it matter that some researcher can create some centers – I can go create some. But that is the issue, that Ferguson only initiated the creation of this organization. And it was created under the Medical Research Council of Imperial College London.
This Imperial College keeps reappearing! By the way, Ferguson continues to head this center. And Ferguson’s curator, Mr. Anderson, works in this same center.
This is how Ferguson describes his life-changing work on unprecedented machinations in the field of pseudo-mathematical forecasts of various epidemics on the Imperial College website: “My research”, says Ferguson, “aims to improve understanding of the epidemiological factors and population processes shaping infectious disease spread in human and animal populations.”
Next he says literally the following: “A key practical focus is the analysis and optimisation of intervention strategies aimed at reducing transmission or disease burden. Much of my work is applied, informing disease control policy-making by public and global health institutions.”
Remember these words “intervention strategy.” And what is this “intervention strategy”? It’s exactly what killed the quarantine victims, who were locked in their apartments, what killed patients with various diseases, who did not receive the necessary medical care, what drove people to insanity, who suddenly found themselves in a strange semi-custodial imprisonment, which was offered to them for an unclear reason, which is an intervention strategy. “In order to avoid a big disaster, an intervention strategy is needed. And how will we intervene – not in the lives of birds and those poor cows, but in your life and those of your children?”
As for Ferguson’s work being of an applied nature, only informing about something, that is especially mysterious when it comes to forecasts, which cannot inform of anything by definition. Or what, does he inform about the forecasts of state authorities? Of course not, he informs about his predictions. What does this have to do with government agencies? He hides behind their authority. Or does Ferguson mean that someone tells him what the predicted results should be? But then it is necessary to understand, who specified these results to him. After all, it can’t be just Mr. Anderson, Wellcome Trust and the major organizations that created Wellcome Trust. Then who?
On July 20, 2007, Imperial College London, towards which my interest is now perhaps more understandable, released a new alarmist report with direct participation from Ferguson, for whom this college has created a special Center. This report is called “Control of a highly pathogenic H5N1 avian influenza outbreak in the GB poultry flock”.
The report states: “Only national vaccination is significant, reducing final size to between 200 and 1000 IPs [infected premises] in established outbreaks. Even this moderate effect is only achieved by vaccinating upwards of 2000 premises.”
What is essentially said here? Vaccination or death! Is it not an advertisement for vaccines? And who here is involved in vaccines? Wellcome Trust and GSK, among others. And who works there? Who is involved with this and what is the connection to Imperial College? So, first they sound an alarm for cows and birds, and then what?
Someone highly appreciates the chatter coming from Ferguson, who has headed the Department of Infectious Diseases Epidemiology at Imperial College London since March 2012.
Someone will ask, “It is not possible, after all, to head a department of a reputable institution without having a professional education in the field that the department’s name specifies? If a person is focused on mathematical models rather than the epidemiology of infectious diseases, how can he head this department?”
I will answer, “Yes, in principle someone like that cannot head the department. But there’s a reason they say that if you can’t, but really want to, then you can.” And here is the main question — who needs Ferguson and his advancement so much, that the impossible becomes possible. Who wants it so much, that this advancement happens in spite of all the “can’ts”?
Since April 2014, Ferguson has been the head of a research unit of the National Institute for Health Research in the British Department of Health and Social Care. This is literally the equivalent of the US National Institutes of Health (NIH), a structure we have already reviewed in detail. At the same time, the UK Department of Health’s National Institute for Health Research is the largest clinical research fund in Europe.
According to the Clinical Medicine Journal, which is published by the Royal College of Physicians, the budget of the National Institute for Health Research at the end of 2016 was about 1 billion pounds or 1.248 billion dollars. Of course, this is not $39 billion, like in the United States. But you have to admit, it is not pocket change either.
But status is more important than money.
September 7, 2018 in the WHO Weekly epidemiological record references Ferguson’s work on population vaccination. Not too shabby for specialist on extrapolations and interpolations of dynamically triangulated random surfaces, is it?
COVID is approaching – and as it approaches, Ferguson’s capabilities continue to grow.
In 2019, Ferguson (I emphasize once again – I am tracking him as an actively significant “pawn”) becomes the director and one of the founders of the Abdul Latif Jameel Institute. And again, this is not an initiative where individual organizational agility is enough. It’s bigger than that.
The Abdul Latif Jameel Institute for Disease and Emergency Analytics is an organization affiliated with someone else. With whom? Imperial College London.
And who is Abdul Latif Jameel? He is a sheikh who founded a company in Saudi Arabia, which became the main distributor of Toyota vehicles by 1955. The sheikh died in 1993, but his business lives on. And everything revolves around the sale of Toyota products. This includes consumer goods, electronics, and marketing support. There are more and more new branches of this honorable endeavor in different parts of the world. I repeat, everything is constantly revolving around Toyota. For some reason, the sheikhs need to promote Toyota. For some reason, Toyota wants to have Abdul Latif Jameel’s company promote its products. And this includes promotion in Turkey, China, Malaysia, Algeria, and anywhere else. And this firm needs to act everywhere.
This venture’s Toyota-centrism slightly decreases over time, but not too much.
In 2013, this same Abdul Latif Jameel company entered into an agreement with the company “King Abdullah Economic City” for the construction of plants that should produce Japanese cars. Gradually, the company began to look at solar energy and the production of desalination plants.
And as usual, the company has a philanthropic structure. It is called Abdul Latif Jameel Community Initiatives. Or Community Jameel.
The institute, which was headed by Ferguson, is called J-IDEA or the Abdul Latif Jameel Institute for Disease and Emergency Analytics. It was not at all Ferguson entered into a partnership with Imperial College London to establish this institute. It was founded by Imperial College London and Community Jameel. That is, this organization, which is deeply Saudi-Arabian, infinitely rich and infinitely connected with Japan. Specifically, with Toyota. This is the humble Mr. Ferguson’s partner in creating a certain institute.
What is this humble institute, which has very ambitious and peculiar patrons, engaged in?
What do you think? Of course, the coronavirus! In other words, it deals with everything related to the processing of data for rapid response to emergency situations, namely: epidemics, extreme climatic events, natural and humanitarian disasters. But how can it be without the coronavirus? With its very ambitious and peculiar patrons?
As early as the beginning of 2020, Ferguson began to push through what he had previously called the “intervention strategy”. In other words, what is aimed at reducing the burden of infection or disease transmission. In other words, total quarantine, which obviously produces devastating economic, social, psychological, geopolitical and other consequences.
And on March 16, 2020, Ferguson’s group from Imperial College London released its forecast (we talked about it in the 5th episode), according to which, if no decisive measures are taken to combat COVID-19, deaths from coronavirus may reach 510 thousand in the UK, and 2.2 million in the United States.
Based on this prediction (do you find it odd? Maybe it seems strange to me too, but it is true) tough quarantine measures were introduced not only in the UK, but also in the US, and on the very same day, March 16 (Ferguson said in an interview that he shared his data with the Americans a week before he released his forecast). In France, Emmanuel Macron announced the quarantine a little earlier, on March 12 (apparently, also after received Ferguson’s forecast in advance). What do you think of this picture on a global scale?
Who else received this forecast? Nothing separates our elite from its western counterparts. It strolls around the same Davos and does not deny itself anything. And in general, no one has cancelled international cooperation. The Cold War is by itself (someone is still trying to claim that there is no Cold War, but this someone is not Mr. Pompeo), while such international cooperation is separate. And Davos is by itself. So, everyone received this forecast from Ferguson. And everyone reacted immediately.
On March 17, 2020, the day after the report was published, Imperial College received a request from Julian Todd, a programmer and freedom of information activist. The request made in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act 2000. Todd asked for the code to be disclosed for the modeling program, as well as the accompanying documentation describing how the model was created and how it was utilized.
In later correspondence with Imperial College London, Todd pointed out that Imperial College was obliged to provide experienced code developers with an opportunity to look at the codes for Ferguson’s program, which has put the whole world on its feet. And that providing such an opportunity could save the world a lot of trouble. Because “Prof Ferguson would have been informed of methods of coding and debugging that would have substantially improved the efficacy of his team’s work“. This is how delicately they worded it.
Programmers such as Julian Todd and Irving Francis are constantly raising concerns about substandard forecasts based on pseudo-mathematical modeling. And they demand that this modeling be subjected to at least some kind of expert review by the software development community. Of course, they say it is impossible if the product is secret. But what is secret about COVID? It would seem that everyone is interested in minimizing its disastrous consequences. So why not share the information? Why not consult? One head is good, but two are better… In general, it is impossible not to pay attention to such assertions.
On March 23, 2020, Neil Ferguson, responding to this delicate but very dangerous black mark, in the form of an appeal from programmers to Imperial College London, stated the following in his Twitter, “I’m conscious that lots of people would like to see and run the pandemic simulation code we are using to model control measures against COVID-19. To explain the background – I wrote the code (thousands of lines of undocumented C) 13+ years ago to model flu pandemics…”
“And that’s why I can’t give it to you” – I would add from myself. “Because it is written in such a way that no one but me, Ferguson, can read it, and I created it devil knows when.” Charming immediacy, isn’t it?
A little later the same day Ferguson further refines his message to the programming community and writes, “I am happy to say that @Microsoft and @GitHub are working with @Imperial_JIDEA and @MRC_Outbreak to document, refactor and extend the code to allow others to use without the multiple days training it would currently require (and which we don’t have time to give)…”
So, he is saying that big companies are starting to clean up after him, to cover his tracks.
So, first of all, he refers to Microsoft, i.e. Gates, who will gladly cover up these traces (for all the talk that he left somewhere – give me a break, everyone who “leaves” like this are here to stay).
And secondly, he says that his program, based on which the world was placed on its feet, is now being reprocessed. Refactors, code extensions and so on. And when it is reprocessed, that is, when all the loose ends are hidden in water, then the programming community will be able to get acquainted with the new edition, which has nothing to do with the previous one. Or with a very heavily edited one. But until then, don’t bother us. And no one knows what the program will be like after processing. In the meantime, hide the loose ends in the water. Because everything was written not like this, not then, and it is impossible to read, you need training that would take too long, and so on. Look how he’s dodging the question!
On March 25, 2020, Ferguson confirmed that he intends to disclose the code at a meeting of the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee of the British Parliament. Then they really got a good grip on him! It is possible to go to prison, the scandal is too high-profile, and it is too “mathematical”. In other words, it is made objective.
On May 5, 2020 a scandal broke out, which, in my opinion, is quite private in relation to what Ferguson created. But which had grim consequences for Ferguson. Perhaps because, among other things, it was time to move the “pawn” aside, so that its activities being exposed would be excessively scandalous.
Instead of discussing Ferguson’s scam and identifying his accomplices and sponsors, that is, the real organizers of the COVID madness, the public attention was directed to something else. To the fact that Ferguson met with his married mistress, who would come to his apartment during the lockdown, and he did not stop even after being infected with the coronavirus.
Society was informed that Ferguson, due to the shady nature of this behavior, was ashamed and decided to resign from the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies under the British Government. Whether he really resigned or not is a separate issue.
On May 6, 2020 the community of programmers, which the organizers of the coronavirus frenzy had managed to intimidate, decided to get up off the defense. It is not so easy. It is an interconnected community, first of all. And, secondly, people here are dealt with very easily. Coming out of its defense, from the hole it crawled into (except for those people I mentioned earlier), it timidly informed those who have not yet completely lost their minds, what exactly he thinks about the scam by Ferguson and his accomplices – a scam called the “coronavirus frenzy”, based on the gamble by a specialist in dynamically triangulated random surfaces, aka Mr. Ferguson OBE, an outstanding expert, professor, and the head of a department working in disciplines he understands nothing about, and so on.
On behalf of a certain Google software engineer, who did not wish to disclose his name, a devastating article was published criticizing the Imperial College code, aka Ferguson’s code.
It says that the Imperial College is stochastic… “Imperial know their code has such bugs, but act as if it’s some inherent randomness of the universe, rather than a result of amateur coding.”
The well-informed specialist says that representatives of Imperial College London, in their argument with representatives of the University of Edinburgh (I have already introduced elements of such arguments), indicated that, “the problem goes away if you run the model in single-threaded mode, like they do. This means they suggest using only a single CPU core rather than the many cores that any video game would successfully use.”
Then it is reported with irony that the representatives of Imperial College London ignore the surprise from experts that the model is run in single-threaded mode using a single-core processor.
“Go ahead and eat people alive, but do not touch our math!” – that’s what they’re saying. And in response to all those who protest, they say: “that’s not a problem, just run it a lot of times” on a single-core processor in single-threaded mode “and take the average.” What are you supposed to calculate the “average” on, on an arithmometer?
Moreover, the author is particularly indignant that the Imperial College folks “haven’t had the time to work out and maintainable way of running the regression test.”
Well, the author says, that is just bloody perfect… So, they did not have the time? If you do not have time to figure out what is happening to me, will you just cut off my head real quick?
Next, the author mentions the parameter R0, which is the basic reproductive number or the basic rate of reproduction — these are different names of the same thing.
What does that mean? It means the number of people who will be infected by a typical patient (that’s the question, who is a typical patient – is it a seriously ill person or who?), found in a completely unimmunized environment (try to find such a thing) in the absence of quarantine. If R0 is more than one, then in the initial stage, the number of patients will grow exponentially.
Since the presence of people with immunity reduces R0, it is actually necessary to consider a different indicator. It is equal to this very R0 minus the proportion of immunized people.
Specialists have repeatedly discussed the speculative nature of this damn R0, which cannot even be measured directly. And also, the fact that everything depends on the infection model. And that the same data can give different R0 within different models.
The author, speaking clearly on behalf of the scientists from Edinburgh who were astonished by the actions of their colleagues from Imperial College London, says that one can only rely on R0, which is exempt from such adjustments, if one goes mad. Or, as I say, if he has very malicious intentions. Specifically, the author says the following: “Despite being aware of the severe problems in their code that they ‘haven’t had time’ to fix, the Imperial team continue to add new features; for instance, the model attempts to simulate the impact of digital contact tracing apps.”
If he had used only profanities instead, it would still have been softer. Because when translated from mathematical slang it’s like saying, “What the hell is wrong with you? You are out of your bloody minds!”
On May 16, The Telegraph published an article in which it referenced specialists, who said that the Imperial College code is “totally unreliable” and is “a buggy mess“. In particular, the publication referred to David Richards, co-founder of the technology company WANdisco, who said the Imperial College code is “a buggy mess that looks more like a bowl of angel hair pasta than a finely tuned piece of programming.”
On May 18, The Heritage Foundation, a US think tank, published a report by statistician Kevin Dayaratna , who together with his colleagues analyzed the published code for the Imperial College model. The Heritage Foundation report states that according to the Imperial College model, “by October, more than 500,000 people in Great Britain and 2 million people in the U.S. would die as a result of COVID-19. The model also predicted the United States could incur up to 1 million deaths even with ‘enhanced social distancing’ guidelines.”
They’re saying: “Well, this is not even a forecast! You take completely wrong numbers, plug them into an erroneous algorithm, you do not take multiple factors into account, like the heterogeneity of those infected, who become ill with varying degrees of severity, you do not correct for any of it, and then give delusional figures. And what, are we supposed to tolerate this?”
And how many Moscow residents and Russian citizens in general were supposed to die according to the Imperial College forecast? After all, hardly anyone believes that Imperial College did not make such predictions. Of course they did. How could they not? And of course, they were relayed their findings to Russia, and rapidly. The world is interlinked – such is the era.
The Heritage Foundation report goes on to talk about the impossibility of focusing on R0 the way that the programmers from Edinburgh University and other competent organizations have already ridiculed.
The Heritage Foundation states with a touching degree of tactfulness: “The Imperial College code provides different answers using the same inputs. In particular, the same assumptions can provide results that differ by 80,000 deaths over a span of 80 days. ”
What can you compare such a statement with? With drawing the attention of specialists in complex numbers to the fact that for some reason they have begun to multiply them like regular numbers. And that this cannot but cause a certain delicate anxiety.
Professor Ferguson remains part of the leadership of the Center for Outbreak Analysis and Modelling, heads the Infectious Disease Epidemiology Department, and he is part of the British Government’s Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies.
That means, he said: “I got caught doing something bad, so I’m leaving!” But they told him, “No, you don’t have to.” It was like that apparently? Or is there a lengthy investigation? How is this really happening? I do not want to absolutize my judgments, but it is necessary to understand what is going on.
Now I suggest we return to the origin of the coronavirus story, when people discussed Ferguson and his incredibly “wise” predictions with unimaginable reverence, accompanied by some fairly valuable information, which they later began to hide under the rug.
(To be continued.)