I discussed some of the lame COVID-19 conspiracies before, but the Bill Gates coronavirus conspiracy requires special attention because it’s particularly idiotic. Most conspiracies are easily debunked or are so ridiculous that we can only debunk them while mocking anyone who pushes it – hey, the coronavirus came from aliens in outer space!!!
We are seeing the COVID-19 deniers significantly overlap with the vaccine deniers, lead by the chief science denier in the country, Donald Orange Trump. So most of the Bill Gates vaccine conspiracies neatly fit into Bill Gates coronavirus conspiracy.
So let’s debunk this crackpot conspiracy, not because Bill Gates needs my help. We’re doing it just so that you have a reference point to debunk the Bill Gates coronavirus conspiracy.
Bill Gates and vaccines
Let’s go back to the beginning. Bill Gates became one of the biggest shibboleths of the anti-vaccine world. As opposed to most billionaires, Gates is a philanthropist who has been one of the world’s leading sponsors of vaccine research along with healthcare (including vaccinations) to underdeveloped countries.
The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF), founded by Bill and Melinda Gates using their vast wealth. most of which came from founding Microsoft. I am a capitalist, and I believe there is no particular moral code associated with accumulating wealth in itself, though how it is used by most wealthy people is abhorrent.
It is wonderful that Bill and Melinda Gates have decided to use their vast wealth to help humanity.
As strong supporters of vaccines, the Gates and their foundation have become one of the leading targets of the vaccine denialists who use a bunch of outright lies to attack his good works. Bill Gates’ support of vaccines is a constant drumbeat from the anti-vaccine world.
For example, the pseudoscience website Natural News claims that Bill Gates says vaccines can help reduce the world population. This is a perfect example of quote mining from Mike Adams, the Health
In fact, Bill Gates actually said that the birth rate drops naturally because of the survival rate of children INCREASES from vaccines! Saving children is precisely what vaccines are supposed to do. More children are living because of vaccines (and other public health efforts of the Gates Foundation and many other government agencies like the World Health Organization), so families don’t need to produce more children who survive to adulthood. It’s a simple concept.
And then there’s nonsense from another lunatic vaccine denier, Sayer Ji, whom I have criticized in the past for his anti-science rants about the immune system, has targeted the Gates and his foundation. Ji wrote an article, “Gates Foundation Funds Surveillance of Anti-Vaccine Groups,” which is a bit fear-mongering, a bit of pseudoscience, and a bit of conspiracy theory lunacy.
Ji also pushes one aspect of the Bill Gates coronavirus conspiracy, but we’ll get to that later.
The vaccine- and science-denying Ji has previously made a completely insane claim that vaccines “subvert evolution”, which was effectively ripped into tiny little pieces and incinerated by Orac a while ago.
Essentially, Ji brings out the naturalistic fallacy (he does this over and over with the immune system), a logical fallacy that knowledge of the present world “is” does not necessarily lead to knowledge of how the world “ought” to be. Ji stated that we interfered with “evolution” through the use of vaccinations.
Orac disabused Ji of his crackpot beliefs:
Ji’s article is the naturalistic fallacy on megadoses of steroids. To him, science isn’t just subverting Nature (with a capital “N,” again!) but it’s producing vaccines that are allegedly going to permanently alter us to make us no longer “human.”
Vaccine scientists and doctors are somehow “callous lack of regard for three billion years of evolution,” as though evolution could never be improved upon. What is medicine, after all, if not interfering with evolution. Antibiotics interfere with evolutionary selection in that they save lives that might otherwise have been lost, allowing reproduction that might never have happened. So does surgery, a whole host of medicines, and a number of other treatments. That’s the idea.
Anyway, Sayer Ji goes after several initiatives of the BMGF including:
- Synthetic Lymph Nodes
- Plant-Produced Synthetic RNA Vaccines
- A Humanized Mouse Model to Evaluate Live Attenuated Vaccine Candidates
- Nanoparticle vaccine for malaria
Of course, that last one with nanoparticles is part of the Bill Gates coronavirus conspiracy. You know, Bill Gates is putting nanobots in vaccines for some unknown, but nefarious, purpose.
These anti-vaccine tropes about Bill Gates and vaccines have been around for nearly 10 years. There are variations on the themes from month to month, but it all comes down to this – Gates supports vaccines, and the anti-vaxxers hate that. For reasons.
There are various parts of the Bill Gates coronavirus conspiracy. None of them have any merit whatsoever, but let me list them out for your edification:
- The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation will earn £31.5 billion on a coronavirus vaccine in the U.K. This came from a post on a well-known anti-vaccine page on Facebook called Revive yourself.
Politifact, which exposes unsupported claims on Facebook and other websites, debunked this particular Bill Gates coronavirus conspiracy. It concluded that:
That number is based on multiplying a reported estimate of the cost of a potential COVID-19 vaccine times the population of the U.K. But the company developing the vaccine has not publicly released an estimate. And while the Gates Foundation has pledged millions of dollars to companies developing potential coronavirus vaccines, there is no evidence that it stands to profit from them.
The Facebook post is inaccurate. We rate it False.
Basically, the claim is based on a YouTube video, a false claim about the price of the new vaccine, and much much more. Every time Politifact try to find evidence supporting the claim, they had to dig deeper into the rabbit hole of false claims.
- Nanobots. We discussed that above – the Gates Foundation has funded research into putting the antigen for a malaria vaccine inside of a nanoparticle, which won’t require injection but through an intranasal spray. There is simply zero evidence that there are nanobots in there.
- Bill Gates wants to vaccinate the world. Oh wait, this is true, and only annoying anti-vaxxers think it’s a bad thing because as we know vaccines are safe and effective. And they save lives.
- Dr. Anthony Fauci is part of the Bill Gates coronavirus conspiracy. In another awful Facebook post from a known conspiracist, it is claimed that:
Fact 9. Dr Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, who walked into the Oval Office and told President Trump to shutdown the economy, has a very close and long time relationship with Bill Gates and the Gates Foundation, as the Gates Foundation are big donors to Fauci’s Institution. Dr Fauci is on “The Leadership Council” for vaccines with the Gates Foundation. He also is a deep state Obama Hillary supporter that has been advising Presidents for decades.
Once again, the good people at Politifact debunked this dumb one. I mean, once you see “deep state Obama Hillary,” you know it’s a right-wing wackadoodle who is pushing this nonsense. Politifact wrote:
The Gates Foundation has supported the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases in the past. He is the director, but NIAID is not “Fauci’s Institution” — it’s part of a federal agency. Fauci is on the Leadership Council for a Gates Foundation-sponsored vaccines collaboration, but Gates himself is not. Finally, there is no evidence that Fauci supported Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama; he has worked for decades under presidents from both parties.
If I were setting up a foundation that advocates for vaccines, I’d want to have one of the great minds in vaccines, Dr. Fauci, advising it on science. Because we know that Fauci has more science in his brain than Trump and the right-wing will ever have.
- The BMGF has a patent on the coronavirus. Before we start, it would be nearly impossible to patent a virus, but let’s debunk it anyway.
Of course, this is another Facebook post with delusional claims. It states that the Gates Foundations somehow owns the patent on coronaviruses.
In science, it’s really difficult to “prove the negative,” but in this case, there is no evidence of this. Again, Politifact did the hard work. They searched US patents, not an easy process, and they found nothing. Another Bill Gates coronavirus conspiracy debunked.
- The Gates Foundation “tested a polio vaccine in India between 2000 & 2017 and paralyzed 496,000 children.” I debunked this conspiracy years ago, but here we go again. I wrote:
Another antivaccination group is pushing the story that Gates is at fault for 47,500 paralysis cases after the polio vaccine in India. However, the CDC has reported that there have been no cases of polio in India since 2011, compared to the 741 cases in 2009.
The paralysis cases were identified as non-polio Acute Flaccid Paralysis, which can result from any number of non-polio viruses or bacteria. In this case, non-polio enteroviruses were identified as the cause and not polio that resulted from the vaccines themselves. In fact, as I discussed before, polio vaccines may spontaneously recombine in the wild and can be transmitted to other humans.
However, in India with a population of 1.2 billion people, there have only been a few cases of actual polio from recombination events. If it were widespread, we’d see millions of cases, but we don’t. Debunked.
Moreover, the Gates Foundation didn’t test a vaccine, they just tried to make sure that the current polio vaccine was available in conjunction with WHO.
There are probably many more Bill Gates coronavirus conspiracy theories out there. But it doesn’t matter – they never have evidence supporting them. They’re just inventions of anti-science and anti-vaccine minds.
This old, skeptical raptor (either avian or non-avian versions) is not an employee of anything run by Bill Gates. Of course, if he wants to offer me an official job mocking anti-vaxxers on the internet, he can contact me. I will insist that I only use Apple products because I have not used a Windows computer since 1998. Seriously.