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Old 05-14-2020, 10:08 PM
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Shouldn't vaccine science be treated like top-secret intelligence?


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Shouldn't vaccine science be treated like top-secret intelligence? With countries competing to outdo each other/hacking each other to bring out the first viable Covid-19 vaccine,. why is vaccine info not released more discretely by Western nations. You can bet China is holding back on its advances.
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Old 05-14-2020, 10:14 PM
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If the US develops a vaccine and China steals it, it only harms the company making the vaccine (plain theft). That would not harm national security.
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Old 05-14-2020, 10:15 PM
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Pretty sure that most scientists are working for the embetterment of humanity as a whole, not some bullshit political game. That's the job of shitty politicians.

But ok, sure, let's keep it a secret...because why? Because you think china is keeping it a secret? How fucking petty is that? You'd let millions die just because they would?
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Old 05-14-2020, 10:21 PM
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Shouldn't vaccine science be treated like top-secret intelligence?
Why on earth? We WANT all potential victims/carriers of an extremely contagious and dangerous disease to get inoculated against it, when/if a vaccine is available, as fast as possible.

Sure, companies who might profit from a vaccine want to protect their intellectual property, and cyberspying can interfere with the crucial activities of research institutions, so spying, hacking and stealing are still Bad Things.

But in the long run, what people overwhelmingly want is vaccines for everybody, as fast as possible. And researchers want to be able to communicate with other researchers. I don't think a movement to impose military-style security classifications on vaccine research data would be well received.
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Old 05-14-2020, 10:52 PM
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With countries competing to outdo each other/hacking each other to bring out the first viable Covid-19 vaccine,. why is vaccine info not released more discretely by Western nations.
Because medicine isn't a competition and viruses don't care what citizenship you hold?
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Old 05-14-2020, 11:09 PM
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Hi

Shouldn't vaccine science be treated like top-secret intelligence? With countries competing to outdo each other/hacking each other to bring out the first viable Covid-19 vaccine,. why is vaccine info not released more discretely by Western nations. You can bet China is holding back on its advances.
How would this benefit the West?
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Old 05-14-2020, 11:18 PM
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Just curious could research on vaccines potentially be used for something bad like an aspect of biological weapons or something, or engineering a bio weapon for which a vaccine could not be made?
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Old 05-14-2020, 11:27 PM
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It's not a competition to see which country will have the most deaths.
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Old 05-14-2020, 11:45 PM
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If vaccines are being used for financial gain/personal profit OR for military (warfare) intent, then yes.

If vaccines are being used for the betterment of humanity and global humanitarianism, then no. We should be working together.
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Old 05-14-2020, 11:50 PM
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Hi

Shouldn't vaccine science be treated like top-secret intelligence? With countries competing to outdo each other/hacking each other to bring out the first viable Covid-19 vaccine,. why is vaccine info not released more discretely by Western nations. You can bet China is holding back on its advances.
On the contrary, vaccine science should be disseminated as widely as possible, as the shared information may speed vaccine development elsewhere. It doesn't matter who crosses the line first, we all win.
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Old 05-15-2020, 04:08 AM
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I think it's only in anti-vax ravings that I ever hear about vaccines being some huge money-making enterprise.
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Old 05-15-2020, 06:17 AM
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Shouldn't vaccine science be treated like top-secret intelligence?
It should be treated like proprietary IP if it is proprietary. That's a far cry from TS intelligence. SCIFs, clearances, ugh...
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Old 05-15-2020, 06:23 AM
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You don't want to use a contagious pathogen as a weapon unless you can precisely target it and ensure all those you care about are immune.

Granted, the same logic can be applied to justify universal health coverage but people can't be expected to be that rational, empathetic and wise.
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Old 05-15-2020, 06:25 AM
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If there turns out to be maybe two or three viable vaccines out of perhaps 50 vaccine projects, who is going to fund the failed projects?

Treatments that are successful and profitable are used to offset the unsuccessful attempts to find treatments - allowing nations to steal the work of others would undermine that and companies are not going to have the resources to fund as many research projects.

It is not possible to determine which projects will be viable until long way down the road.
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Old 05-15-2020, 06:43 AM
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Hi

Shouldn't vaccine science be treated like top-secret intelligence? With countries competing to outdo each other/hacking each other to bring out the first viable Covid-19 vaccine,. why is vaccine info not released more discretely by Western nations. You can bet China is holding back on its advances.
No.

In fact: HELL NO

Vaccine research should be open source (with strong copy-left protections). I'm typing this from a big-pharma computer, so I wont lax linguistic about the industry, but it should not be secret or protected by intellectual property law at all. Especially considering how much of the pharmaceutical industry in general is based directly on government funded research.
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Old 05-15-2020, 07:14 AM
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The fastest way for the world to come up with a vaccine is to openly share research between scientists. Which is exactly what is occurring, the entire world over.

The political pissing around about who gets initial production or how it will/should be distributed, is just that, POLITICAL PISSING.
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Old 05-15-2020, 07:24 AM
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Originally Posted by davidmich View Post
Hi

Shouldn't vaccine science be treated like top-secret intelligence? With countries competing to outdo each other/hacking each other to bring out the first viable Covid-19 vaccine,. why is vaccine info not released more discretely by Western nations. You can bet China is holding back on its advances.
The worlds intelligence services have been helpless spectators as their countries suffer.
Hiding vaccine science will simply ensure that they find something to do. A way they can help.

Can you seen how this might not be a great idea?
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Old 05-15-2020, 08:28 AM
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I saw a notice that Chinese actors are trying to steal research relating to a vaccine. I hate to say this... but good! Everyone should be collaborating, voluntarily or not, to end this crisis.

https://www.cisa.gov/sites/default/f..._S508C.pdf.pdf
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Old 05-15-2020, 08:34 AM
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No.

In fact: HELL NO

Vaccine research should be open source (with strong copy-left protections). I'm typing this from a big-pharma computer, so I wont lax linguistic about the industry, but it should not be secret or protected by intellectual property law at all. Especially considering how much of the pharmaceutical industry in general is based directly on government funded research.
Thank you. I do agree with you. But where do you draw the line on what you in your lab discover that may not be used for benign purposes by bad actors. I'm referring to biowarfare.
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Old 05-15-2020, 08:43 AM
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Because medicine isn't a competition and viruses don't care what citizenship you hold?
Nor does the pathogen check its visa at the border. In infectious epidemic anywhere is potentially a pandemic everywhere.

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It's not a competition to see which country will have the most deaths.
This is the view a normal, sane person would hold. However, if you are a self-described ďvery stable geniusĒ...

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Originally Posted by Bryan Ekers View Post
I think it's only in anti-vax ravings that I ever hear about vaccines being some huge money-making enterprise.
Pharmaceutical research is very much a boom or bust enterprise in general, but vaccines (which are generally one or two applications except for seasonal influenza) are not high value products to the point that their development and manufacture oftenhave to be subsidized. The anti-vaxxers know as little about the business side of phrarma research as they do about science.

Stranger
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Old 05-15-2020, 09:08 AM
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Thank you. I do agree with you. But where do you draw the line on what you in your lab discover that may not be used for benign purposes by bad actors. I'm referring to biowarfare.
It's conceivable that some research findings could be nefariously turned to harmful purposes (I first typed that as "porpoises", which suggests a caffeine deficit needing attention). But the theoretical risk is far outweighed by the need for transparency, leading to faster development and approval of effective vaccines in healthy competition. Imagine also the hay antivaxers could make of secrecy in vaccine development. These are people already madly flogging the idea that Bill Gates wants to microchip vaccine recipients on the pathway to world depopulation.
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I think it's only in anti-vax ravings that I ever hear about vaccines being some huge money-making enterprise.
Vaccines are profitable for pharmaceutical companies. However, vaccine sales make up something like 2-3% of overall pharma revenue, so it's not a huge chunk. And something antivaxers conveniently overlook is that if drug companies stopped making vaccines, their profits would soar from the resurgence of vaccine-preventable diseases, making possible greatly augmented sales of antibiotics and other medications used to treat these diseases.

Here's my nascent viral conspiracy theory: Gilead Pharmaceuticals is secretly plotting to sabotage coronavirus vaccine trials to protect sales of remdesivir.*

*it's a joke, son.

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Old 05-15-2020, 10:51 AM
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I kind of see where the OP is coming from; in a Machiavellian sense, if say.. the US had developed an effective vaccine or treatment for COVID-19 in the course of other research (like say.. remdesivir), or schemed up an effective treatment that we could have used earlier on in the pandemic, in a geopolitical power sense it would have possibly behooved us to keep that close to our chests and not share it. The thinking being that if the rest of the world is ravaged by COVID-19 and their economies crash harder than the US economy as a result of us having the vaccine/treatment, it positions us better in the future economically with respect to those countries.

Now I'm not saying it's *right*, but I can see why it might be in our benefit. Similarly, and more sinisterly, I can see along the same lines why the Chinese might have wanted to keep information about the pandemic under wraps as long as they could; this would position them to be recovering economically earlier than the nations they consider to be their competition (i.e. the West), and to take advantage of our economically prostrate situation.
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Old 05-15-2020, 12:57 PM
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I thought if we learned anything from covid, it's that world funding for vaccine research, and corresponding collaboration is unfortunately inadequate.
Mankind has a shared threat that we were not prepared to handle, and we collectively need to get our shit together.

The idea that we should now decide that a problem that the world cannot quickly solve is best solved buy dropping collaboration and un-pooling resources is taking the piss.

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I kind of see where the OP is coming from; in a Machiavellian sense, if say.. the US had developed an effective vaccine or treatment for COVID-19 in the course of other research (like say.. remdesivir), or schemed up an effective treatment that we could have used earlier on in the pandemic, in a geopolitical power sense it would have possibly behooved us to keep that close to our chests and not share it. The thinking being that if the rest of the world is ravaged by COVID-19 and their economies crash harder than the US economy as a result of us having the vaccine/treatment, it positions us better in the future economically with respect to those countries.

Now I'm not saying it's *right*, but I can see why it might be in our benefit.
I cannot see why it would be in the US' benefit, since economics is not zero sum.

I would prefer to live in a wealthy country than one marginally less ravaged than others.

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Similarly, and more sinisterly, I can see along the same lines why the Chinese might have wanted to keep information about the pandemic under wraps as long as they could; this would position them to be recovering economically earlier than the nations they consider to be their competition (i.e. the West), and to take advantage of our economically prostrate situation.
While some terrible errors of judgement and injustices happened in the early days of handling this crisis, there is no evidence of this being kept secret for more than the 10 day interval between the epidemiologists' report and informing the WHO.
Not much of a head start and it really doesn't explain the very different progression in the US.
Also, while a lot of the media seems to be JAQ-ing this idea of keeping an epidemic secret, it doesn't stand up to a moment's scrutiny. Yes a few sporadic reports can be kept quiet, and that's indeed what happened.
But once you have a full blown epidemic, the circle of people affected in any way gets very big, very fast. And if you don't tell the entire public to take measures to contain its spread, it's going to explode.
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Old 05-15-2020, 01:03 PM
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Here's my nascent viral conspiracy theory: Gilead Pharmaceuticals is secretly plotting to sabotage coronavirus vaccine trials to protect sales of remdesivir.*

*it's a joke, son.
I've already gone on record with my conspiracy theory: Covid19 is a plot by the Los Angeles Xtreme to cancel the 2020 XFL season so they could retain their 2001 championship.

Wake up, sheeple!
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Old 05-15-2020, 01:46 PM
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Besides the other good answers, why would we want to encourage our customers in other countries to die - and our suppliers also.

In 1918 the existence of the flu epidemic was considered a military secret. We can see how that turned out.
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Old 05-15-2020, 02:46 PM
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"Should we keep our hole-plugging techniques secret from the people on the other side of the boat?"

A disease that ravages other countries in the world will affect Americans even if we have a vaccine - there will always be people that the vaccine doesn't work for or who can not receive a vaccine for medical reasons. For that matter, it is possible that a vaccinated person who would not get the disease if exposed to one carrier would get the disease if he encounters many carriers - so it's in everyone's interest to reduce the total number of carriers worldwide.
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Old 05-15-2020, 03:56 PM
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I kind of see where the OP is coming from; in a Machiavellian sense, if say.. the US had developed an effective vaccine or treatment for COVID-19 in the course of other research (like say.. remdesivir), or schemed up an effective treatment that we could have used earlier on in the pandemic, in a geopolitical power sense it would have possibly behooved us to keep that close to our chests and not share it. The thinking being that if the rest of the world is ravaged by COVID-19 and their economies crash harder than the US economy as a result of us having the vaccine/treatment, it positions us better in the future economically with respect to those countries.
But no, it doesn't. The United States is not better off if the rest of the world is poor; the United States is better off if the rest of the world is rich. Rich people buy more stuff, create more cool things you can use, and make for more stables allies.

Furthermore, poor and sick people can infect you, too. Vaccines work better if EVERYONE has them.

Hiding the vaccine from foreign rivals, furtermore, only motivates them to take actions towards stealing it.
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Old 05-15-2020, 04:48 PM
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Consider how long it would take to discover a vaccine if every country kept what they learned from their research secret.
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Old 05-15-2020, 08:25 PM
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"Could you patent the sun?" -- Jonas Salk, when asked if he planned to try and claim a patent for the polio vaccine.

Salk hated the celebrity and attention it brought to him, and usually preferred to do his research in private -- but he didn't feel that one could claim ownership to a vaccine.
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Old 05-16-2020, 12:22 AM
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I just had the unpleasant realization that this exact scenario may well play out.

Hundreds of teams around the world are racing to develop a vaccine. And whoever develops the vaccine, it will rapidly be available everywhere.

Except... if the US wins that race. Because there is zero doubt in my mind that the current administration would care only about political gain and not what is in the best interest of the American people, or saving lives. They would love to say "America beat everyone because 'we' developed the vaccine!" and the idea of other countries begging the US for something gives them wet dreams.
I can only hope that in that scenario there would be scientists willing to leak data out of the US.
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Old 05-16-2020, 01:09 AM
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I just had the unpleasant realization that this exact scenario may well play out.

Hundreds of teams around the world are racing to develop a vaccine. And whoever develops the vaccine, it will rapidly be available everywhere.

Except... if the US wins that race. Because there is zero doubt in my mind that the current administration would care only about political gain and not what is in the best interest of the American people, or saving lives. They would love to say "America beat everyone because 'we' developed the vaccine!" and the idea of other countries begging the US for something gives them wet dreams.
I can only hope that in that scenario there would be scientists willing to leak data out of the US.
I think the public outcry would force Trump to say that he was only being sarcastic when he said that.
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Old 05-16-2020, 02:22 AM
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I just had the unpleasant realization that this exact scenario may well play out.

Hundreds of teams around the world are racing to develop a vaccine. And whoever develops the vaccine, it will rapidly be available everywhere.

Except... if the US wins that race. Because there is zero doubt in my mind that the current administration would care only about political gain and not what is in the best interest of the American people, or saving lives. They would love to say "America beat everyone because 'we' developed the vaccine!" and the idea of other countries begging the US for something gives them wet dreams.
I can only hope that in that scenario there would be scientists willing to leak data out of the US.
Do the developers of a vaccine have to get permission from the US government in order to ship it overseas?
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Old 05-16-2020, 02:31 AM
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Do the developers of a vaccine have to get permission from the US government in order to ship it overseas?
No.
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Old 05-16-2020, 04:52 AM
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That's not the question to ask though, the question is whether the government could prevent vaccines being shipped.

I don't know, but I would guess "yes". We've had plenty of shenanigans with PPE imports being seized and redistributed. Blocking stuff going out from specific manufacturer(s) is comparatively simple, and they won't care whether they have the legal right to do it.

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Old 05-16-2020, 05:44 AM
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Hi
Shouldn't vaccine science be treated like top-secret intelligence?
It would regrettably be of no great surprise that those who struggle with the notion of humanising medicine would wish to weaponise medicine.

After all, MAGA trumps primum non nocere, right?
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Old 05-16-2020, 05:53 AM
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Does it matter who discovers it? Regardless, it will be manufactured in either China or India most likely. Like almost all our current pharmaceuticals, I think. So it’s a silly to think who discovers it is the key.

The US, very publicly hijacked an order for N95 masks purchased by, and being shipped to Canada, at the height of a pandemic. Now, how shy do you think China and India will be to do the same? They are ALL three playing the same tribal political games, after all.
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Old 05-16-2020, 06:24 AM
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The US, very publicly hijacked an order for N95 masks purchased by, and being shipped to Canada, at the height of a pandemic. Now, how shy do you think China and India will be to do the same? They are ALL three playing the same tribal political games, after all.
What? How are other countries playing the same tribal political games?

Despite what the OP says, the most plausible bad faith actor here is the US, and I take no pleasure in saying that.

Yes, if manufacturing output is insufficient, the primary manufacturing country might prioritize their own citizens, for a while.
But deliberate withholding? I'd take that bet for any country other than the US.
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Old 05-16-2020, 06:29 AM
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Is it possible to reverse-engineer a vaccine once it is available, and if so, how quickly? IOW, can another country just copy it once they have their hands on a working sample? Recent news reports have mentioned that the US seems to be investing in getting the distribution channels and ancillary products prepared and available for quicker widespread inoculations. This struck me as unusual, considering how uncoordinated we’ve been with everything else. Maybe the idea is: even if someone else discovers it, we can still take credit by replicating it and getting our people inoculated faster.
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Old 05-16-2020, 07:00 AM
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.....Despite what the OP says, the most plausible bad faith actor here is the US, and I take no pleasure in saying that.

Yes, if manufacturing output is insufficient, the primary manufacturing country might prioritize their own citizens, for a while.
But deliberate withholding? I'd take that bet for any country other than the US.
You know, itís really a shame that this view of the US is so common worldwide. And while Iíve met many Canadians, Australians and Europeans in my life who poked fun at the USís greed and world domination fantasies, the underlying context was always that we were all allied and on the same side on important global issues.

Iíve never been one to drape myself with the American flag, and really donít even understand why we have countries. But the fact of the matter is that much of the worldís innovations over the past century have come out of the US, and there has never been any reluctance to share them with the rest of the world. In fact, many new products and improvements developed in the US are often available and implemented in other countries even before they are domestically. And sure, there is always an underlying profit motive, but that is what drives the investment and resources to fund these advancements.

I hope that the idea that the US could develop a vaccine, and then withhold it from the rest of the world, is just a temporary reaction to the current president. Would anyone have thought this when Obama was president?
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Old 05-16-2020, 08:27 AM
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I hope that the idea that the US could develop a vaccine, and then withhold it from the rest of the world, is just a temporary reaction to the current president. Would anyone have thought this when Obama was president?
Reaction to the current reality, not just the president.

Let me be clear: in my native UK you can often encounter some loudmouth in a pub blaming the US for all the world's problems, and as recently as 5-6 years ago, I would have defended America against such cynicism (while acknowledging yes, there have been foreign policy atrocities and of course the original sin of slavery; similar to the UK).

But the conservative right in the US is just fucking nuts right now and is dragging the whole world backwards. Trump just happens to be the guy that stopped dogwhistling that group and started fully embracing them.

And it's not just words at this point. I hate it when people say things like "There can be much worse things than Trump's tweets". I don't give a shit about his tweets. I care about the actions of the US government.
And, based on current form, I would be perfectly happy to wager that they would at least attempt to withhold a vaccine for political leverage (and then dole it out country-by-country based on who's playing ball). Whether it's logistically possible to do that is another question.

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Old 05-16-2020, 09:04 AM
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I just had the unpleasant realization that this exact scenario may well play out.

Hundreds of teams around the world are racing to develop a vaccine. And whoever develops the vaccine, it will rapidly be available everywhere.

Except... if the US wins that race.
Such a scenario (the U.S. "winning" the race and then withholding the vaccine from the rest of the world (or making them pay dearly for it) ludicrous from the aspect of self protection (we can't seal the borders and prevent anyone from getting in; disease is always going to be just a plane ride away). It's in our best interests to get worldwide coverage.*

With so many scientists in different countries working on the problem, there are bound to be multiple potential solutions within a relatively narrow time frame (it probably won't be this year, but eventually). The U.S. couldn't possibly block or pre-empt all those solutions.

Such musings are yet another manifestation of Trump Derangement Syndrome, a contagious disease for which a vaccine is highly unlikely (hopefully it won't be necessary after January of 2021).

*not to mention the interests of U.S.-based Big Pharma and the Bill Gates Depopulation Squads, oo.
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Old 05-16-2020, 09:22 AM
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Such a scenario (the U.S. "winning" the race and then withholding the vaccine from the rest of the world (or making them pay dearly for it) ludicrous from the aspect of self protection (we can't seal the borders and prevent anyone from getting in; disease is always going to be just a plane ride away). It's in our best interests to get worldwide coverage.
It was in the US best interests to honor the Paris accord, stay in the Iran deal, not unilaterally pull out of Kurdish Iraq, respond to russian hacking, not voice support for conspiracy theories and snake oil cures for coronavirus etc etc. This government doesn't care about such things; they don't care about what is beneficial to their citizens down the line or their international obligations.

Quote:
The U.S. couldn't possibly block or pre-empt all those solutions.
As I said in my previous two responses: I don't know if it is possible / practical for the US to withhold a vaccine. But, this government would absolutely try.

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Such musings are yet another manifestation of Trump Derangement Syndrome, a contagious disease for which a vaccine is highly unlikely (hopefully it won't be necessary after January of 2021).
If thinking the president is an idiot and a crook, and the current republican party are a bunch of enablers and grifters...then, yes, I have Trump Derangement Syndrome.
I caught it by listening to the president's own words and observing his actions.
  #43  
Old 05-16-2020, 09:22 AM
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Originally Posted by Mijin View Post
Reaction to the current reality, not just the president.

Let me be clear: in my native UK you can often encounter some loudmouth in a pub blaming the US for all the world's problems, and as recently as 5-6 years ago, I would have defended America against such cynicism (while acknowledging yes, there have been foreign policy atrocities and of course the original sin of slavery; similar to the UK).

But the conservative right in the US is just fucking nuts right now and is dragging the whole world backwards. Trump just happens to be the guy that stopped dogwhistling that group and started fully embracing them.

And it's not just words at this point. I hate it when people say things like "There can be much worse things than Trump's tweets". I don't give a shit about his tweets. I care about the actions of the US government.
And, based on current form, I would be perfectly happy to wager that they would at least attempt to withhold a vaccine for political leverage (and then dole it out country-by-country based on who's playing ball). Whether it's logistically possible to do that is another question.

You are optimistic to think that it would be withheld from countries that do not show proper deference to Trump, I would not be surprised if he withholds it from *States* that do not treat him with enough "respect".

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Originally Posted by Jackmannii View Post
Such a scenario (the U.S. "winning" the race and then withholding the vaccine from the rest of the world (or making them pay dearly for it) ludicrous from the aspect of self protection (we can't seal the borders and prevent anyone from getting in; disease is always going to be just a plane ride away). It's in our best interests to get worldwide coverage.*
There are quite a number of things that would be in our best interest that are not done by this administration. That it would be good for the world and the people of the US is not a compelling enough reason.
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With so many scientists in different countries working on the problem, there are bound to be multiple potential solutions within a relatively narrow time frame (it probably won't be this year, but eventually). The U.S. couldn't possibly block or pre-empt all those solutions.
This is likely correct. That doesn't mean that we wouldn't try. I'm sure we couldn't block them, but I'm sure we can interfere.
Quote:
Such musings are yet another manifestation of Trump Derangement Syndrome, a contagious disease for which a vaccine is highly unlikely (hopefully it won't be necessary after January of 2021).
Have you not paid any attention in the last 3 years? Now, whether or not our institutions and norms (AKA, the Deep State) manage to override Trump's selfishness and greed is a reasonable question, and I would hope so. But they are doing everything in their power to destroy the institutions and norms that you ensure worldwide distribution of a vaccine or effective treatment.

Do you really think that if it was left up to Trump, and Trump alone, as to who would receive vaccines or treatment, he would not want something in return?
  #44  
Old 05-16-2020, 10:18 AM
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It should be the opposite of top secret intelligence. Everybody should be sharing everything openly. Screw the patents, everyone should agree that when the silver bullet is found it's free to use by anyone. If we all know what each other is doing, perhaps you wouldn't have multiple teams working on the same thing at once and more paths could be pursued simultaneously.
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Old 05-16-2020, 10:18 AM
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Hi

Shouldn't vaccine science be treated like top-secret intelligence? With countries competing to outdo each other/hacking each other to bring out the first viable Covid-19 vaccine,. why is vaccine info not released more discretely by Western nations. You can bet China is holding back on its advances.
The vaccine (when its perfected) is a weapon. Even if you gave away the medical version of source code, there are only so many places it can be produced and I have heard that the first generation of the Vaccine will be in the millions total production. Obviously you can build more facilties, train more workers, QA inspectors and the like. But for world wide distribution for 7 billion people, the actual shot could be as much as five years away.

So the first thing is that you dont want China to grab an Alpha release of the vaccine, as going to full production may cause a severe reaction to distribution of the vaccine, if that version was a failed version that kills more people than it cures. Think Anti-vaxxers on steroids.

But yeah, how fast you get your cure might be correlated with your performance in diplomacy in conjunction with American diplomacy. How fast Mexico gets it for free, instead of say Nigeria does not leave much room to wonder about how you can use it to grease some wheels.
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  #46  
Old 05-16-2020, 10:50 AM
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Do you really think that if it was left up to Trump, and Trump alone, as to who would receive vaccines or treatment, he would not want something in return?
Even if Trump was Total Evil (as opposed to the actual version, which is far closer to bumbling idiot), there are enough responsible people cleaning up after him and independent scientists who don't give a rat's ass about his opinions to make the vaccine-withholding scenario somewhere between wildly improbable and ludicrously impossible.
  #47  
Old 05-16-2020, 11:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Jackmannii View Post
Even if Trump was Total Evil (as opposed to the actual version, which is far closer to bumbling idiot), there are enough responsible people cleaning up after him and independent scientists who don't give a rat's ass about his opinions to make the vaccine-withholding scenario somewhere between wildly improbable and ludicrously impossible.
That is exactly what I said in my post. That the institutions and norms would likely override Trump's impulses, or at least, that is what I hope. The question that you quoted, but did not answer, was "if it was left up to Trump, and Trump alone".

I did not say that Trump was "Total Evil", that is entirely a fabrication of your own creation. I said that he was selfish and greedy. That he is a bumbling idiot does little to mitigate the damage that his narcissism causes.

Let us say that the US gets a vaccine, and it does not seem as though anyone else will have one for 6 months. Sure, we share it with Canada, and northern Europe. But what about Iran? I think we should, but I cannot see that happening without a great deal of controversy among the MAGA crowds. Will we give the IP to China, with all the contentions we have with them, including the conspiracies that are believed and propagated at the highest level as to China's culpability in the pandemic?

Will the less fortunate nations on our planet have the same access as well? How hard are we going to work to get this vaccine into Latin and South America? Into Africa or the Middle East?

Trump is no Salk.
  #48  
Old 05-16-2020, 12:09 PM
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It is possible, given that their are incompetent and evil people holding positions of power in the world, that someone would try to keep vaccine development secret. But it is not, under any circumstances, a good idea to do that. And even if the government tried to keep an exclusive hold on a vaccine, they would fail. All it takes is one person to risk arrest or whatever other punishment the government is attempting to impose, and the secret would be out. We couldn't even keep the nuclear bomb secret, and that's something that the vast majority of rational people would prefer didn't exist. How hard would it be to keep something secret when the vast majority of people think they have a moral imperative to spread the knowledge?
  #49  
Old 05-16-2020, 01:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jackmannii View Post
Even if Trump was Total Evil (as opposed to the actual version, which is far closer to bumbling idiot), there are enough responsible people cleaning up after him and independent scientists who don't give a rat's ass about his opinions to make the vaccine-withholding scenario somewhere between wildly improbable and ludicrously impossible.
You do realize that governors feel they have to kiss Trump's ass to keep from losing out on life-saving equipment and aid, right? And that an independent doctor like Fauci is prevented from testifying before the House because they are too mean?

Anyone using "Trump Derangement Syndrome" to defend him has lost - since the person recommending people take dangerous unproven medication for the virus cares little for the health of America let alone the rest of the world.
  #50  
Old 05-16-2020, 03:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Mijin View Post
Reaction to the current reality, not just the president.

Let me be clear: in my native UK you can often encounter some loudmouth in a pub blaming the US for all the world's problems, and as recently as 5-6 years ago, I would have defended America against such cynicism (while acknowledging yes, there have been foreign policy atrocities and of course the original sin of slavery; similar to the UK).

But the conservative right in the US is just fucking nuts right now and is dragging the whole world backwards. Trump just happens to be the guy that stopped dogwhistling that group and started fully embracing them.
I'll agree with you about the right here in the US, but the UK has no room to talk when it comes to foreign attrocities and greed. They're just as bad, if not worse, than the US. (If only because they're an older and much larger nation)

That's the only thing that gets me -- usually the people in other nations who say these things (NOT accusing you, necessarily) often come from countries with a similiar history.
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