In early March of 2020, I was aghast that the newest James Bond film might be postponed due to the pandemic. It seemed an overreaction.

It is not that I denied there was a disease, I noted the death of a Chinese "Wuhan Flu" whistleblower when corporate media still said that concerns and calls to ban travel were racist and xenophobia. It is because I believed the science community had the best interests of the public at heart instead of politics, for once.

While I don't trust China's government, or any communists, and neither should you, the World Health Organisation was on their side saying there was no pandemic at all. China said only 3,000 people had died. Given that, President Trump's call to ban travel being framed as racist and xenophobic seemed legitimate.

In March of 2020 I was still foolish enough to believe China was telling the truth and that concerns about China were racist and xenophobic, which meant canceling a movie 5 weeks in the future was an overreaction. Despite writing about how politics infects science for 13 years at that point I was still fooled.

Yet then it got weird. We did go into lockdown, I was fine with that, I believe in SIR and R0 because literate people do, but suddenly an article appeared in The Lancet claiming any investigation into a lab leak in Wuhan was, you guessed it, racist and xenophobic and a right-wing conspiracy theory. China, which had imported a virus that looked a whole lot like SARS-CoV-2 to the Wuhan lab from 1,000 miles away after six miners died, took down its entire coronavirus database. They sandblasted the Wuhan wet market where it first appeared in a city. Their COVID-19 death totals remained flatlined while Chinese people reported crematoriums burning non-stop day and night. People were barricaded into homes. All for 3,000 deaths in a country of one billion?

And why were Chinese researchers and a guy in America funneling money to them getting to do public relations for the Chinese Communist Party in The Lancet?

Cut to today and numerous intelligence agencies say that the lab leak theory is a lot more plausible than we were being told then - by career government employees and academics who disliked Trump as much as journalists do. And yet despite this being a real learning lesson opportunity - like just because your political opposition says something does not make it false - we get more rationalization by politicos who care as little about the public now as they did in 2020. 

A hilarious-because-it-is-oh-so-cloyingly-earnest example of 'moving the goal posts' hypocrisy is on The View, where we are now told the lab leak hypothesis dismissed for years as Trump's racism and xenophobia didn't get more acceptance because of...Trump's racism and xenophobia.

It is good to be a rich celebrity when one month you can say any talk of a lab leak is racist and xenophobia and then when you are shown to be wrong by agencies run by your own political party can claim you only denied it because the scientists and politicians worried about it are...racist and xenophobic. They engage in the kind of 'look what you made me do' framing that abusers do.

It is pure politics, it should not be science. Unfortunately, today it far too often is.