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Energy Dept Blames COVID on Wuhan Lab

Energy Dept Blames COVID on Wuhan Lab

Even considering that Washington wallows in confusion, misinformation, and political propaganda, the opinion on the source of Covid-19 is especially vexing.  

Recently, the Department of Energy (DOE) shifted its assessment of the source of the Covid-19 virus from those bats in the fresh markets to the Wuhan Institute of Virology.   That shift is fundamental.  It means that the virus was not the work of nature that jumped to humans because of shoddy sanitation.  Rather, the virus was created by man and infected millions of folks across the globe because of shoddy safety procedures – or worse.

The one thing that is certain in either case is that the responsibility for the Covid-19 Pandemic rests clearly on the shoulders of China … period.  They caused a real-life human catastrophe, unlike anything we have ever seen outside of a sci-fi movie.

While the shift in the assessment of the source of the virus by the Energy Department is significant, it is not being reported without the government’s tendency to maintain confusion.  In conjunction with the announcement of its latest opinion, the Energy Department gave its own assessment a “low probability” rating.  

In other words, the folks at the DOE are saying: “We believe that the Covid virus is man-made and leaked out of the Wuhan lab – but we have very little confidence in our opinion.”

Across the Washington political landscape, confusion reigns supreme.  The FBI is arguably in the lead in believing Covid was manufactured in the lab.  The all-knowing CIA does not know one way or another.  

Most importantly, is the opinion of the White House – President Biden.  They tend to favor the Chinese claim that it is natural.  Although they did not rate their own claim, it did seem to be made with a discomforting low level of confidence.

There are huge ramifications in determining the source.  If it is from those little furry nocturnal fly-by-nights, China bears a lower level of responsibility.  If the virus was manufactured in the lab in Wuhan, their culpability is far greater.  One is an unfortunate accident at the local level.  The other is official Chinese policy and procedures.

There are also major ramifications for the United States and a big chunk of the Washington establishment.  If Covid is the product of nature, then there is little liability for the folks in D.C.  However, if it came from the lab, a lot of officials – and especially Dr. Anthony Fauci – have a lot of ‘splaining to do.

Most of the Washington establishment – from public officials to the media – stuck with the claim that the virus came from nature.  They may be wrong, but that view best suited their political and pecuniary interests.  Those who said otherwise were accused of being conspiracy theorists – and were either harshly repudiated or cancelled.

Obviously, if China had created the viral monster, Biden would have a bigger problem in dealing with China – a nation he does not like to confront in any meaningful way. 

If the virus is determined to be the work of Chinese scientists, the role of Fauci becomes central to the debate.  More specifically, how money he controlled or influenced wound up in the hands of the scientists doing the gain-of-function research that birthed the virus.  Suddenly, the issue is not about negligence and human error but willful lies to the American people – and the world.

Why would the Washington Establishment participate in what would be a cover-up of the truth?  Why allow China to get away with a much more sinister responsibility?

Is it because Biden would be pressured to take harder action against China?  Is it because Fauci –and others – would have their images tarnished … their past statements and actions exposed … their role in the creation of the virus uncovered?  They may even lose income.

Those are all good reasons to lie and cover-up.  It seems, however, that the inevitable truth is coming out.  The opinion is shifting based on the science and the evidence.  If you were inclined to play the odds, the chances are that the Covid-19 virus was created in and leaked out of the Wuhan lab.  That is the trajectory of the evolving body of information.

If there ever is a time that the truth is known beyond a reasonable doubt – that the virus is man-made — you can rest assured that nothing will happen to those responsible for the cover-up.  That is the Washington way.

So, there ‘tis.

About The Author

Larry Horist

So,there‘tis… The opinions, perspectives and analyses of Larry Horist Larry Horist is a businessman, conservative writer and political strategist with an extensive background in economics and public policy. Clients of his consulting firm have included such conservative icons as Steve Forbes and Milton Friedman. He has served as a consultant to the Nixon White House and travelled the country as a spokesman for President Reagan’s economic reforms. He has testified as an expert witness before numerous legislative bodies, including the U. S. Congress. Horist has lectured and taught courses at numerous colleges and universities, including Harvard, Northwestern, DePaul universities, Hope College and his alma mater, Knox College. He has been a guest on hundreds of public affairs talk shows, and hosted his own program, “Chicago In Sight,” on WIND radio. Horist was a one-time candidate for mayor of Chicago and served as Executive Director of the City Club of Chicago, where he led a successful two-year campaign to save the historic Chicago Theatre from the wrecking ball. An award-winning debater, his insightful and sometimes controversial commentaries appear frequently on the editorial pages of newspapers across the nation. He is praised by readers for his style, substance and sense of humor. According to one reader, Horist is the “new Charles Krauthammer.” He is actively semi-retired in Boca Raton, Florida where he devotes his time to writing. So, there ‘tis is Horist’s signature sign off.


  1. frank stetson

    Good to know if we want to avoid a repeat as we handled this one quite poorly. I care less about the mysterious nefarious side of things Larry alludes to and more about: how do we improve our avoidance or mitigation the next time.

    I start from the position of that the US response sucks, the Chinese suck in general, and the governments from both countries suck in transparency. That’s suck, suck, suck, and suck.

    It seems that the improvement needs to be in the alarm system: as in rapid and full transparency of all aspects from the initial infection, everything that could be known of day one of the infection. I don’t think China did that — but we need to document it and then get world agreement for future reactions.

    On top of that, the world needs to treat these labs like nuclear production sites — safety measures, external observation for compliance, etc. Worldwide wherever possible. Chernobyl, Wuhan — not much difference — oh wait, Wuhan millions of dead worse.

    IMO — it looks like the virus accidently escaped the lab into the Wuhan market area. The cause seems to be sloppiness and proximity. The only maliciousness I think we will find is stupidity and people doing the CYA dance, including the Chinese and US Governments, Fauci and other US scientists.

    First, a fact: I don’t think they sell bats, especially live ones in the Wuhan market. Plus, I think it was the bat hibernation season. Chances are infected people infected people and Wuhan is close to the lab.

    Second, bashing Fauci the person will probably not unveil the evil genius some desire. The US did gain-of-function all over China. It’s probably not all managed by Fauci. Some of these labs are noted as having about the same precautions as your friendly neighborhood dentist. We need to know all, the government, not Fauci, must be transparent. Fauci is either all of it, part of it, or none of it — but we need to know all of it. That should be a no brainer. We know it was “legal” after Obama I believe, but WTF were we doing and why. Did we properly vet the labs, should we have known more, and known faster, because we paid for it? I don’t think Fauci-hunting will bear fruit, but we need to know the story.

    We need to know our part, but that part will not change what happened in China; if we didn’t pay for it, someone else would have stepped up to the line. China, and any other countries with these labs, is the root cause.

    IF it does turn out to be a lab leak, the world needs to know if China did everything it could as soon as it could. The world needs to know this today. If we determine the Chinese were holding back, we should hold that over their heads until they change. As in deal-breaker to the Chinese economy serving the world. They can turn the spicket off, but so can the world.

    This is not about condemnation of Fauci, of China, this is about making sure the world does not do this again, if WE did it to ourselves this time and it sure is looking like we did.

    Third, this is probably not the first time man has screwed himself with a virus proving that it will probably not be the last time. The first is likely the Spanish Flu, killing 5 million. There’s a good chance that the boys being gassed with all sorts of new chemicals, laying in those awful wet muddy trenches, getting upper respiratory disease, mutated by the chems, and then —- we ship the sickest ones home… little man-made flu incubator bombs…..

    If so, in both cases there is one truth: manmade viruses are a bitch that unnaturally defy nature and natural trends for viruses. Hello, Mr. McFly the scientist — is there anybody in there? It’s not good to screw with Mother Nature he said as Florida continues to sink under the waves…..

    It would be good to know what happened so we can avoid it next time or at least be able to react faster and better than either the Spanish Flu or this covid.

    One last thing IMO — the inquiry should not stop there. We can’t stop people cooking these up and releasing them. We need to objectively assess our response to determine how to do it better. Better should be easy. Let’s face it, on the numbers, the US response sucks. We got more, we killed more, and we are still arguing masks, distancing, lockdowns, and the vaccine as if it’s a political problem. We don’t debate, we kvetch, protest, and even attack. Some are thinking of it in terms of a culture war. Come on, it’s the flu. Today, in America, the greatest nation on the planet, we are still killing at 4-5 times the rate of a seasonal flu while dreaming “mission accomplished” because only the old people dying now. We jiggered our metrics to mute the harm, we stopped reporting it in places, we have decided whether here or not, it’s a moot point. That’s not a victory, that’s not even over. At this point, if covid-20 hit us, we would not fare one iota better. We slap ourselves on the back about how fast we designed a vaccine, but then we didn’t even take it. Our 50-state individual response strategy is a nightmare. We ran out of toilet paper. We are still bickering about standing six feet apart as a Bill of Rights issue. We can easily do better; many other countries did. As a nation, we need consensus on what happened and what we might do different next time. The word community comes to mind as a starting point.

    Because there will be a next time and we better get started NOW.

    I hope the Republican House investigation will focus on our real issue of future avoidance and mitigation instead of just head hunting for political advantage and retribution. IMO, this is their most important investigation and I pray the result primes a plan to do better tomorrow.

  2. Tom

    Larry, I told you it would come to this in a previous blog of yours, and I explained how the gain of function was done using Dr. Zheng Li’s own documents. And I referenced her 2018 document in my blog response.

    First about Dr. Shi Zhengli, often called “the Bat Lady’. Dr. Zhengli: Shi is the director of the Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases at the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV), located in Jiangxia District, Wuhan. On her resume, Shi mentioned receiving grant funding from U.S. government sources totaling more than US$1.2 million, including $665,000 from the National Institutes of Health from 2014 to 2019, as well as US$559,500 over the same period from USAID. What many people do not realize is that Dr. Shi Zhengli is on the PLA (People’s Liberation Army) biological research staff and heads the infection virus research for the PLA which reports to the CPC also called the CCP (Chinese Government).

    Dr. Zheng Li and Dr. Fauci and NIH/NSAID have been involved in Corona Virus “gain of function” experiments for many years. POTUS Obama found out about it in 2015 and cut his funding, and also specifically forbade getting involved with such research, labeling such research as “too dangerous”. But this did not stop Dr. Fauci. Dr. Fauci “went sneaky” in 2017 and disguised the funding for gain of function in the NIH budget. Trump administration claims to not have realized Dr. Fauci’s 2017 budget deception. Fauci sent the money to Dr. Zhengli via a third party contract to a health agency called EcoHealth Alliance headed by a guy named Paul Daszak, ( see )for whom she gives credit for the funding in her 2017-2018 research paper delivered to the US-NIH. Senator Rand Paul stumbled upon the paperwork transferring the funding to Eco Alliance when he was investigating Dr. Fauci and the NIH. This is what Rand Paul was so pissed-off about in his TV interview on Fox and CBS, he felt deceived by Fauci when they questioned him all the way back then in 2020-2021.

    So here is the way this Independent/Unaffiliated voter sees the responsibility:

    Fauci – Deception, Budget fraud, funding illegal research.
    USA – Funding illegal research, specifically Corona Virus gain of function experiments performed in China.
    China – lab leak of a deadly Corona Virus in 2019, aiding transmission of a deadly virus by not stopping international travel from China, destruction of Corona Virus data and lab inventories, obstruction of the WHO investigation into Covid-19 origin.

    Peter Danzak, Echo Health Alliance at “”

    The paper that gives Peter Danzak credit for funding is located at ““

    The explanation of how Dr. Zhenli performed the gain of function is this paragraph within the paper referenced above:
    “ In the current study, we successfully cultured an additional novel SARSr-CoV Rs4874 from a single fecal sample using an optimized protocol and Vero E6 cells. Its S protein shared 99.9% aa sequence identity with that of previously isolated WIV16 and it was identical to WIV16 in RBD. Using the reverse genetics technique we previously developed for WIV1 [23], we constructed a group of infectious bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) clones with the backbone of WIV1 and variants of S genes from 8 different bat SARSr-CoVs. Only the infectious clones for Rs4231 and Rs7327 led to cytopathic effects in Vero E6 cells after transfection (S7 Fig). The other six strains with deletions in the RBD region, Rf4075, Rs4081, Rs4085, Rs4235, As6526 and Rp3 (S1 Fig) failed to be rescued, as no cytopathic effects was observed and viral replication cannot be detected by immunofluorescence assay in Vero E6 cells (S7 Fig). In contrast, when Vero E6 cells were respectively infected with the two successfully rescued chimeric SARSr-CoVs, WIV1-Rs4231S and WIV1-Rs7327S, and the newly isolated Rs4874, efficient virus replication was detected in all infections (Fig 7). To assess whether the three novel SARSr-CoVs can use human ACE2 as a cellular entry receptor, we conducted virus infectivity studies using HeLa cells with or without the expression of human ACE2. All viruses replicated efficiently in the human ACE2-expressing cells.”

    • larry Horist

      Tom … So, now you are an “I told you so.” LOL Actually, your piece was an excellent bit of research and writing — better than my commentary, I hate to say. While I dealt with the news-of-the-day, you went deep. Kudos.

      • Tom

        Thanks Larry!

  3. frank stetson

    While I am in your rowboat Tom, not really ready to pull on the oars. I am at a point where it sure looks like a Chinese lab, I am sure we funded gain-of-function —– just not sure how involved we are in THIS pandemic, or how it got out from the lab: accident/sloppiness or purposeful (doubtful given the result). While bats may be involved in the making, I do not think they are responsible for making the pandemic. It’s a lot easier to infect via respiratory doublets than jumping the bat, so to speak. Not to mention: don’t think their are bats in the market or the area.

    This stuff is so complex that I hope Congress can make it simple.

    Here’s my input —- it’s Propublica but in partnership with VanityFair which has some of the best investigative reporting on this. All of your players are mentioned, just not in quite the same darker terms. IF you can explain the conclusions: God bless. My grey matter was leaking out my ears…… It’s really long, and that’s me talking :>)

    These folks have been polishing this story for years; it has gotten easier. Point is they update and will update again. I think it’s the Bible now:


  4. AC

    After each big thing causing human beings tragedy and suffering with death, communicable disease, mental illness loved one’s of the victims, of police brutality, a madman’s shooting, persons stricken with sickness from polluted water-chemical spill-fire-flooding or any calamity happening seemingly weekly. Common is the refrain THIS SHOULD NOT EVER BE ALLOWED TO HAPPEN AGAIN TO ANYONE. A statement that has almost unanimous agreement.
    But, given that Americans’ are known as having an exceedingly short attention span. Those with legislative decision making power are conflicted considering contributions pouring in from lobbyists, deep pocketed donors, and who knows what and whom else. Nothing productive changes in law, with greater resource allocation for investment remedies alleviating causation.
    The mass of Americans appear not to have learned the obvious, if inconvenient truth, COVID-19 is with humanity still in its numerous variants.
    Individuals continue arming themselves legally and illegally. Supply is more than sufficient for demand for more. Police department continue their inability separating out the “bad apples”. Funds are tight in departments short on police experienced on the street and instruction personnel leading retraining.
    So, the bright spotlight’s focus and heat was for a time. That time passed with no perception of wholesale change except along the margin. Change there was superficial, temporary.
    Who or what influences the twin monoliths representing those insisting on change. The other representing the the systems in control determining how things get done. Significant change that matters is as it has been, slow to nil.
    What will it take for a major sea change taking hold of society and remolding minds and priorities into establishing expectance of altruism in opposition to arrogant greed and thirst for power?

  5. Frank stetson

    Words out, it’s live raccoon dogs from wuhan market ! WHO pissed. Nowhow is the lab gonna figure in????