https://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2022/05/scandals-in-the-nih.php

Two stories about the National Institutes of Health hit the news today. The first arose from testimony by acting NIH director Lawrence Tabak before a House Appropriations subcommittee. Tabak admitted that NIH hid genetic information about the covid-19 virus that could have shed light on its origin, at the behest of the Chinese Communists:

National Institutes of Health acting director Lawrence Tabak confirmed to lawmakers Wednesday that US health officials concealed early genomic sequences of COVID-19 at the request of Chinese scientists — but insisted the data remains on file.

Tabak told a House Appropriations subcommittee that the NIH “eliminated from public view” the data from the pandemic epicenter in Wuhan, China, before adding that researchers can still access it via an archaic “tape drive.”

I do not understand why a federal agency would be more loyal to the Chinese government than to the American people. But that is what we have come to in today’s administrative state.

Vanity Fair recently reported that the information was hidden in response to a request from Chinese scientists, despite potentially resolving whether the virus leaked from the Wuhan Institute of Virology or passed naturally from animals to humans.

Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler (R-Wash.) asked Tabek to explain why US officials would comply with such a request.

“There’s no question that the communication that we had about the sequence archive — Sequence Read Archive — could have been improved. I freely admit that,” Tabek said. “If I may, the archive never deleted the sequence, it just did not make it available for interrogation.”

So the information exists, you just can’t see it. There is more at the link about bureaucrats’ hostility toward data that suggested the virus came from a Wuhan laboratory leak.

The second scandal is financial. The Epoch Times reports:

The Epoch Times received no responses from multiple requests to Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.) and Rep. Frank Pallone (D-N.J.) for comment on a report by a non-profit government watchdog estimating that Fauci, former NIH director Francis Collins, and hundreds of NIH scientists got as much as $350 million in undisclosed royalty payments from pharmaceutical and other private firms between 2010 and 2020.

Why are they undisclosed?

The revelations from Open the Books, which were first reported on May 9 by The Epoch Times, are based on thousands of pages of documents the group obtained from NIH in a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit in federal court. The suit was filed by Judicial Watch on behalf of Open the Books.
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A spokesman for NIH also did not respond to multiple requests from The Epoch Times for comment.

It seems rather obvious that millions of dollars from pharmaceutical companies represent a conflict of interest.

Because NIH hands out $32 billion in research grants to medical institutions and researchers annually the undisclosed royalty payments, which are usually for work on a new drug, may indicate the presence of massive and widespread conflicts of interest or the appearance of such conflicts, both of which violate federal ethics laws and regulations.

Based on what we have seen over the last few years, I will hazard a wild guess that Anthony Fauci was at the front of the line with his hand out. And then he went on to demand that all of us get vaccinated–repeatedly!–to the great benefit of the drug companies. Coincidence.

I have always opposed the administrative state on philosophical grounds, while assuming that it was more or less honest. That assumption has turned out to be false. We are crazy to repose so much power in institutions–people–who so little have our interests at heart. Taxpayers are the ultimate chumps.

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