Skip to comments.Fact-checking ‘Plandemic’: A documentary full of false conspiracy theories about the Coronavirus
Posted on 05/07/2020 8:31:02 PM PDT by SeekAndFind
Before YouTube and Facebook removed it, a 26-minute video called “Plandemic: The Hidden Agenda Behind Covid-19” was viewed tens of millions of times on social media.
The clip shows Mikki Willis interviewing Dr. Judy Mikovits, a former scientist at the National Cancer Institute, about the coronavirus pandemic.
We fact-checked seven of Mikovits’ most misleading claims from the video. They span from conspiracies about the origin of the coronavirus to falsehoods about wearing a face mask.
If you’ve been on social media in the past two days, there’s a good chance you’ve seen someone share "Plandemic: The Hidden Agenda Behind COVID-19," a 26-minute video about the coronavirus pandemic.
The video is a deep dive into conspiracy theories about COVID-19, public health and the pharmaceutical industry. It discusses Dr. Anthony Fauci’s efforts to combat the AIDS epidemic during the 1980s and Bill Gates’ support of vaccination efforts around the world.
The film was produced by Elevate, a California production company run by Mikki Willis, who has more than 30,000 subscribers on YouTube. The video is billed as part one of an upcoming documentary.
Many of Willis’ videos highlight conspiracy theories. In one clip, Willis’ young son says Jeffrey Epstein didn’t kill himself. In another, Willis floats a debunked conspiracy that the coronavirus was "intentionally released."
In "Plandemic," Willis interviews Dr. Judy Mikovits, a former scientist at the National Cancer Institute. Mikovits, before her work was discredited, was lauded in the late 2000s for her research on chronic fatigue syndrome. Mikovits makes several claims that are either unsupported or outright false.
Several readers asked us to look into Willis’ documentary. Copies of the film have been removed from YouTube and Facebook for violating the platforms’ community guidelines, but they still received tens of millions of views.
We fact-checked seven of Mikovits’ most misleading claims in the film.
This is inaccurate spin about Mikovits’ past legal problems. She was charged in 2011 with stealing computer data and related property from her former employer.
The Whittemore Peterson Institute for Neuro-Immune Disease in Reno, Nevada, fired Mikovits in September 2011 as research director after her study linking a mouse retrovirus to chronic fatigue syndrome was discredited and retracted by Science, a prestigious peer-reviewed journal. In November 2011, the district attorney in Washoe County, Nevada, filed a criminal complaint against Mikovits for allegedly stealing computer data, notebooks and other property from the institute.
Mikovits was briefly jailed in California on criminal charges. On June 11, 2012, the district attorney’s office filed a petition to dismiss the charges without prejudice.
Mikovits says in "Plandemic" that the notebooks were "planted" in her house. She also alleged that the National Institutes of Allergy and Infectious Diseases "paid off" investigators at the direction of Fauci, the director of the agency.
There is no evidence to support either claim. We reached out to the National Institutes of Health, which houses the NIAID, for a comment.
"The National Institutes of Health and National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases are focused on critical research aimed at ending the COVID-19 pandemic and preventing further deaths," a spokesperson said in a statement. "We are not engaging in tactics by some seeking to derail our efforts."
Scientists say it’s not. The genetic structure of the novel coronavirus rules out laboratory manipulation.
A Nature article published March 17 says the genetic makeup of the coronavirus, documented by researchers from several public health organizations, does not indicate it was altered. Instead, scientists have two plausible explanations for the origin of the virus: natural selection in an animal host, or natural selection in humans after the virus jumped from animals.
"Our analyses clearly show that SARS-CoV-2 is not a laboratory construct or a purposefully manipulated virus," the article reads.
That finding does not rule out the possibility that Chinese researchers were studying the virus in a lab when it managed to spread outside the lab, although the government there has denied that.
‘This occurred from SARS 1 within a decade — that’s not naturally occurring’
This is a wrong explanation for the source of the novel coronavirus. The virus that causes COVID-19 is a new disease — it’s not derived from Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome.
The novel coronavirus is similar to SARS in some respects. Both are human coronaviruses that originated in bats, cause respiratory illness and spread through coughs and sneezes.
But the viruses only have a 79% genetic similarity, according to researchers. The novel coronavirus is more genetically similar to other bat-derived coronaviruses than SARS.
This is misleading. We rated a similar claim Half True.
The federal government is giving more money to hospitals that treat coronavirus patients. But there is no indication that hospitals are over-identifying COVID-10 patients as having COVID-19 — if anything, evidence suggests the illness is being underdiagnosed.
Medicare pays hospitals a set amount of money for the treatment of certain diagnoses, regardless of what the treatment actually costs. Medicare has determined that a hospital gets $13,000 if a COVID-19 patient on Medicare is admitted and $39,000 if the patient goes on a ventilator.
In addition, Medicare will pay hospitals a 20% "add-on" for COVID-19 patients. That’s a result of the CARES Act, the largest of the three federal stimulus laws enacted in response to the coronavirus, which was signed into law March 27.
Experts previously told PolitiFact that Congress included the add-on in the CARES Act because hospitals have lost revenue from routine care and elective surgeries. It is unlikely that physicians would falsify the data, as there are strict policies for reporting.
This is unproven. There is no cure or vaccine for SARS or the novel coronavirus.
While some studies have found that hydroxychloroquine could mitigate some of the symptoms associated with COVID-19, other research has found no such effect. With more than 50 studies in the works, as well as an NIH clinical trial, it’s too soon to say whether the drug is a viable treatment for the coronavirus. (The most recent study, a large-scale study of nearly 1,400 New York-area patients with moderate to severe COVID-19, found that patients fared no better by taking hydroxychloroquine.)
Fauci tempered expectations for hydroxychloroquine during a March press conference after Trump touted the drug. And several states have restricted access to it given how little scientists know about how it affects the coronavirus.
This is inaccurate. Other fact-checkers have debunked similar claims.
In "Plandemic," Mikovits points to a study published in January in the peer-reviewed journal Vaccine. The study found that, among personnel in the U.S. Defense Department between 2017 and 2018, the odds of getting coronaviruses were greater for vaccinated officials than unvaccinated officials.
But that doesn’t support Mikovits’ claim.
First of all, the study was conducted before the COVID-19 pandemic. And scientists have noted flaws in its experimental design; for example, the number of vaccinated subjects was more than twice as large as the number of unvaccinated subjects.
Finally, nowhere in the study do the authors say flu vaccines increased subjects’ odds of getting a coronavirus by 36%. That bogus claim was added to the study in a March 11 story from DisabledVeterans.org.
This is inaccurate. Similar claims have also been debunked by other fact-checkers.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, most flu vaccines in the United States protect against four different kinds of viruses: influenza A (H1N1), influenza A (H3N2), and two influenza B viruses. Others protect against three kinds of flu viruses.
There are no coronaviruses in the flu shot. And there are no human coronavirus vaccines.
There is no evidence to support this. We’re not sure what a "coronavirus expression" even is.
The CDC advises anyone who goes out in public to wear a mask. Since it can take up to 14 days for an infected person to exhibit symptoms, the goal is to prevent unwittingly spreading the coronavirus through coughs and sneezes.
Wearing a face mask prevents the spread of the coronavirus — it does not make people more susceptible to it.
"There is nothing about wearing a mask that would have any biologically relevant impact on viral activity," said Richard Peltier, an assistant professor of environmental health sciences at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, in an email. "Wearing a mask simply catches the droplets before they reach our mouth or nose. It isn’t rocket science, and Dr. Mikovits should know that."
Some times you just know when people are lying about something.
Youtube only removes videos when they’re true.
I wanna believe!
Here are Fauci’s patents involving elements associated with the Coronavirus. Are these patents a conspiracy theory?
And Fauci’s signature is viewed on the diversion of millions of dollars of NIH funds to the Wuhan Lab. Is that a hallucination?
Thank you for posting this and you might want get your fire-proof suit ready, this thread might get hot.
RE: Thank you for posting this and you might want get your fire-proof suit ready, this thread might get hot.
I don’t care how many hot flames are thrown, I just want the truth. As long as the attacks aren’t personal ( i.e. directed at me, the poster, which is against FR policy ) I don’t mind.
Fauci convicted himself with the word “anecdotal.”
Fauci’s gift of $3,700,000.00 to the Wuhan lab/institute in China also says a lot.
Was it those millions that gave us COVID-19?
Both of those are highly probable!
If anyone is looking for the video, it’s here and will likely stay up:
Under the 1980 Bayh Dole act, Federal employees have some legal rights to the IPs they create. The NIH as whole averages 97k/yr in royalties, sometimes 150k. According to Fauci, he's made $45k since 1997, which is about 2k/yr. Fauci's pay started at $200k and by 2018 was $384k.
Regardless if federal employes should have patent rights or are over compensated, the amount of money they make of royalties is not much. Fauci is not getting rich off any of his patents.
I love how they throw out that it’s been debunked! Politico horseshit!
Oh, And Jeffrey Epstein didn’t kill himself!
It’s amazing that so many narcissists are unable to feel embarrassed or ashamed of their own speech in defiance of simple logic. Notice that medical workers use masks. And many of them, short on supplies, have even been doing so with very risky methods (wearing too long, dirty disposable masks, etc.). I’ve seen photos of quite a few of them wearing ill-fitting, leaky surgical masks.
Crossroads with Joshua Phillips
A predominant motive behind the conspiracy theories appears to have been anger and helplessness about business sub-sectors slowing down. It’s more of a market and technical problem than a legal one. Maybe we should harden businesses and the economy against epidemics, before something worse comes along.
Another take down of Plandemic.
Here is what isnt fake in the video. The doctors on the front line and their takes. I have no problem with researching her, but everyone is dodging the facts laid out by the real doctors fighting this.
Respectful Insolence is written by a real doctor.
The claims the CDC is pressuring them to misreport deaths as Covid deaths: No one is looking at the actual CDC guidelines, which in short are to use the best medical judgment when in doubt. The abilty of the CDC to tell any single doctor how write up a death certificate is non existent.
The claims of 13k per covid patient: Medicare is paying out more for covid patients, because it is a emergency. There is a implied accusation that doctors are committing or being pressured to commit malpractice or Medicare fraud, as if that could not happen anyway and are already civil or criminal acts, without any evidence.
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