House of Faucistein, by David Cole

For a lot of people, especially Republicans, it’s convenient to blame Fauci and the Wujan lab for the Covid-19 virus, but is it correct? From

The Godfather Part II: Covid Edition

Starring Xi Jinping as Michael Corleone and MAGA as Senator Geary

Xi Corleone sits in a stately office in his home overlooking a lake.

Senator MAGA sits opposite him.

The mood is tense.

Senator: “I don’t like your kind of people. I don’t like to see you come out to my clean country and foul it up with your pandemics. I despise your masquerade, the dishonest way you handled the crisis. You’re gonna have to answer for Covid; you’re gonna have to pay.”

Xi: “I’ll give you my answer now: I’ll pay nothing. In fact, you will take the blame for Covid for me, and you’ll do so without even knowing that you’re spouting my propaganda word-for-word.”

Senator MAGA sneers and walks out.

End scene

I’m throwing in the towel on the Wuhan lab theory. Not because I’m wrong (I’m not). There’s no proof for the lab theory beyond the coincidence of having a virology lab in the same massive city of 11 million where the first case clusters occurred, and the fact that it’s scientifically possible that the bug could have been genetically modified in a lab. But “coincidence” and “it’s theoretically possible” are not proof. That said, the lab theory has become rightist canon. And I’m too old to be arguing with people who want to believe something so badly, arguing becomes moot.

If I were into that kind of thing, I’d go to Scientology HQ and debate the efficacy of E-meters.

Truth is, the lab theory is the perfect vehicle for Republicans looking to woo MAGAs while not actually doing anything legislatively. Because there’s nothing that can be done legislatively. There’s just bitching. GOPs love that. You bitch about something domestic, eventually someone’s gonna say, “You’re lawmakers. Do something about it.” But screaming “evil China lab” is like howling at the moon. And in MAGA-land, where the performative trumps the substantive and “owning” libs through words beats owning them through actions (this is the most unfortunate aspect of Trump’s legacy), yelling “Wuhan lab!” is a risk-free way for rightist politicos to prove their bona fides without actually having to accomplish something.

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