You all ready? Here we go.

Science doesn’t work by fiat, or by forced, fabricated consensus.

That consensus that you see before you? It’s a mirage. It’s a farce.

Science embraces all hypotheses, and says: let me at ‘em. [thread 1/30]
Science does not require a lab coat, or fancy tech, or a big grant. Having a credential and using an authoritarian tone are *useful* for tamping down dissent, but “useful” and “truth-seeking” aren’t always the same, are they now? 2/
.@BretWeinstein & I have the credentials—evolutionary processes are central to zoonotic disease *and* gain-of-function research. But we lack the perverse incentives that might keep us quiet. Refusing to be bullied into a canoe turns out to be freeing. 3/
SARS-CoV-2 has destroyed so many lives and families, businesses and economies. Are we really expected to believe that it’s not in our collective best interest to understand where it actually came from? 4/
Since appearing on @realtimers on Jan 29, @BretWeinstein and I have seen, not for the first time, the chasm open up—the chasm between the evidence and the narrative. I get why most people would rather pretend the chasm doesn’t exist. It’s frightening. 5/
Is it possible that the origin of SARS-Cov2 is simple and obvious and anyone positing a lab origin is engaged in conspiracy thinking? 6/
I guess it depends on what your definition of conspiracy is. From where I sit, positing as complete a solution set of hypotheses for an observed phenomenon as possible, is science, not conspiracy.

I know that I am not alone in this. 7/
Among many thoughtful letters I received in the last 36 hours, one from a doctor in CA stands out. He asks: Are you sure? Of course I’m not sure. That is what we do in science. We wade in and look for all the explanations and we say: I’m not sure, but I think this. 8/
Here is an example of what that can look like—that wading in and trying to figure out what might be true: #DarkHorseLive65, in which we clarify some points from the Maher segment, and add to them. 9/
As always, refs to the papers discussed are in the show notes. Here is 1: In Nov’20, a major scientific journal published an appeal, from a doctor who has advised the U.S. government on emerging infectious diseases, to consider all the possibilities: 10/…
Here is an article from 2015, published in Nature Medicine, that “examine[s] the disease potential of a SARS-like virus, SHC014-CoV, which is currently circulating in Chinese horseshoe bat populations.” 11/…
Note the editorial comment at the top of that Menachery et al 2015 paper. Note the date. They were working hard to get ahead of considering a full slate of hypotheses. What did they stand to lose? 12/
Fact is, in 2015, shortly after the Menachery et al 2015 paper was published, Nature published this news article, outlining some of the on-going concerns within the scientific community about precisely such gain-of-function research. 13/…
The concerns about risks from gain-of-function research were substantial enough that, in 2014, the U.S. government, during the Obama administration, issued a moratorium on all such research. 14/…
The moratorium on gain-of-function research was reversed in 2017, during the Trump administration. 15/…
The fact that serious concerns have been raised about the risks & utility of gain-of-function research is not evidence that the SARS-Cov2 pandemic is a result of such research.

But being told that the matter is decided, move along, nothing to see here…that raises questions. 16/
A twitter thread is not the optimal place to outline a complex scientific argument. Here are three places where possible origins of SARS-Cov2 have been explored at length: 17/
Here is @Ayjchan’s excellent, extensive twitter thread in October of 2020: 18/
This episode of DarkHorse with @BretWeinstein and @ydeigin, from June 2020: 19/
And in December of last year the lab leak hypothesis made it mainstream when Nicholson Baker published this excellent piece in New York Magazine. 20/…
One of many differences between what Bret and I and the many others who are beating this drum are doing, and what the establishment is doing, is that we are saying: here are all of the possibilities. 21/
To do science, you need a complete solution set of hypotheses. By comparison, the establishment insists, and has insisted nearly from day one, that there is one and only one possible origin for this virus. That’s not scientific. That’s propaganda. 22/
Bret and I started our livestream / podcast in March 2020 precisely to bring more careful, scientific awareness to COVID. 23/
We wore masks before anyone around us was doing so, and advocated for it on our livestreams, pointing out that the WHO and the U.S. Surgeon General had been, until very recently at that point, arguing the opposite. 24/
It turns out that the WHO and the Surgeon General were making a political argument, which is now acknowledged. Is it so odd to imagine that they might still be engaged in politics, politics masquerading as science? 25/
Since those early episodes, Bret and I have also come back with corrections. We make errors, as people do. We acknowledge them. 26/
Considering the lab leak hypothesis is not an error, however. It may not be true. I hope it’s not, as if it is all political hell is likely to break loose. But what I think is likely, and what I hope for, are not the same thing. 27/
Science is the process by which we discriminate between what is actually true, and what we think or hope is true.

Arguing that the lab leak is not even a possibility, as most in the establishment argue, *is* an error. This approach is anti-scientific. 28/
If the lab leak hypothesis is truly falsified, all of us who have spoken about it should speak about that as well. We all deserve to be maximally informed. 29/
What we do not deserve is authoritarian diktats from people wearing the mantle of science, while actually engaging in something quite unlike anything that I recognize as science. Call it “partisan science,” or “conclusion-driven science”—either way, it ain’t science. /end

• • •

Missing some Tweet in this thread? You can try to force a refresh

Keep Current with Heather E Heying

Heather E Heying Profile picture

Stay in touch and get notified when new unrolls are available from this author!

Read all threads

This Thread may be Removed Anytime!


Twitter may remove this content at anytime! Save it as PDF for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video
  1. Follow @ThreadReaderApp to mention us!

  2. From a Twitter thread mention us with a keyword "unroll"
@threadreaderapp unroll

Practice here first or read more on our help page!

More from @HeatherEHeying

13 Jan
All of us are capable of beauty, grace & strength, and also of ugliness, spite & weakness. We make brilliant decisions, and bad ones. Sometimes we follow when we should lead in a different direction. Sometimes we conform so as not to feel alone. At our best, we forgive. [thread]
Here are three amazing pieces relevant to this moment, insightful and deep and enjoyable to read. They do not ask you to suffer for your sins, or to turn in your neighbors. They invite you to think, by offering observation and interpretation, and letting you go from there.
.@walterkirn writes of the “liberal switch from skepticism to sanctimony about the most powerful arms of the Establishment” and of “liberal puritanism…fears that the wrong sort of people might be happy, or that their happiness might be of the wrong kind.”…
Read 6 tweets
6 Dec 20
Here are a few cool things. Viewers of the DarkHorse podcast will be familiar with some: DarkHorse merch, an arts & culture magazine, perfume, some books. Gift ideas, if you will. [thread]

Your algorithm’s no good here—a recurring theme on the podcast.…
Root Quarterly is a gorgeous, high-production arts and culture magazine based in Philadelphia—from journalism to poetry, politics to food, it is a joy to read, and to have in your hands.
At the end of #DarkHorseLive53, I read (hilarious) perfume reviews from Turin & Sanchez’s “Perfumes: The Guide.” Soon thereafter, I became aware of Possetts Perfumes, which makes entirely hand-blended, original perfume. This is art, and affordable too.
Read 4 tweets
3 Nov 20
Preparing good food for and with loved ones is a blessing. Image
Update #1: Zack reports that the onions are sad. Image
Update #2: Toby finds the lemons juicier than expected. Image
Read 7 tweets
2 Nov 20
A vote is not a valentine.

It seems that we differ, more publicly and more virulently, in our politics, than we ever have before. We are imagining the worst in each other. Fueled by anger and tribalism, we conflate disagreement with an idea, with dislike for a person. [1/11]
I didn’t vote for Trump, although to my surprise, I did consider it this year. I also didn’t vote for Biden. Both have disastrous potential. Many on the left see imminent threats from our own side. For having this opinion, we are called blind, racist, traitors, fascists, more. 2/
In 1992, riots erupted in Los Angeles, after Rodney King was beaten on camera by police officers, and a jury then acquitted the officers of assault. In the midst of those riots, Rodney King famously asked, “Can we all get along?” 3/
Read 11 tweets
6 Oct 20
On this day I am grateful. I am grateful for all the usual—love & partnership, home & hearth, the prospect of adventures to come.

Today I am also grateful for the moon, waning, high in the sky on a blue sky morning. And a grassy hill, with one tree, in whose shade I can sit. 1/4
I am grateful for a perfectly brewed cappuccino from a café that also sells art, the walls lined with beauty, the owner wondering how to proceed in these strange times, told that her efforts are noticed, appreciated. 2/4
I am grateful for the sounds of activity and connection, traveling up the air of this park where I sit: the scrape of a skateboard on concrete, the pop of tennis balls against racquets; the romping of dogs playing. 3/4
Read 4 tweets
30 Sep 20
Here are three conversations that brought me hope, laughter, and depth of understanding. Six outstanding humans sharing thoughts about childhood, language, society, what is coming and what to do now. The common theme: all six are unflinching.

What a gift.
From two of my favorite people: @FreeRangeKids talked with @meghan_daum on her terrific new podcast, @TheUnspeakPod (and I’m not just saying that because I was lucky to be Meghan’s first guest):…
The always surprising @JohnHMcWhorter in conversation with @SamHarrisOrg is something to behold. This conversation felt audacious, and audacity is exactly what we need now.…
Read 4 tweets

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just two indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member ($3/month or $30/year) and get exclusive features!

Become Premium

Too expensive? Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal Become our Patreon

Thank you for your support!

Follow Us on Twitter!