I applied for the interview after researching the company and seeing the opening on the careers page of their website.
Several days later, their head of HR contacted me for an online interview to book the available interview timeslots. Afterwards, I confirmed the interview time and date upon receiving the calendar invite and prepared for the interview.
However, on the day of the interview, the Head of HR, or anyone from the company that was supposed to interview me did not show up. I emailed the official contact after noticing they did not show up 10 minutes into the interview and even reached out with the number they provided.
After waiting for nearly an hour, I reached out again expressing disappointment that I was not notified if the were running over a previous meeting or if the interview was rescheduled on short notice.
Several hours later, I received messages from the head of HR saying he did not check his calendar for additional meetings after his previous meeting ran over. He also apologized for missing the meeting.
I responded to his message asking the head of HR for any available time to reschedule and sent an email as well. I also asked if they received my emails as I did not receive any replies from them about the interview issue and for a chance to reschedule the interview they missed.
A week later, I received a generic email saying they are not moving forward despite missing their own interview.
It is very disappointing how this was handled and the interview process is a reflection of the company as a whole.
FIVE THINGS FOR VOTERS TO REMEMBER WHEN DECIDING BETWEEN JOE BIDEN AND BERNIE SANDERS
1. Joe Biden is exactly the kind of weak establishment Democrat that Donald Trump can beat — Donald Trump excels at running against members of the Democratic establishment. When he beat Hillary Clinton, it was because he attacked her for being pro-Wall Street, responsible for free trade agreements that shipped American manufacturing overseas, a supporter of the disastrous Iraq War, and embroiled in corruption scandals. Joe Biden is exactly the same: he was in the pocket of credit card companies (and helped them make it more difficult for poor Americans to get out from under crushing debts in bankruptcy), voted for NAFTA, was a key supporter of Bush’s catastrophic war, and has his own corruption scandal. Worse, Biden has lied about things like his Iraq war support. These lies will be the subject of constant, and effective, attack ads in a general election.
2. Joe Biden does not have the ability to inspire voters or the strength necessary to fight Trump. — Throughout this campaign, Biden’s fundraising has been anemic and his events poorly-attended. Biden’s public speeches are rambling and incoherent. His “gaffes” are near-constant to the point where it is often not clear he knows where he is or what office he is running for. One does not want to make fun of this and it is a delicate subject but we are talking about making someone President of the United States and problems like these will be pounced on by Trump.
It will be impossible for Biden to produce a reason for young people to turn out and vote for him, because he has long stood in the way of social progress—such as by partnering with racist senators to oppose racially integrating the school system and expand the prison system—and represents every tendency in the Democratic Party that has turned off progressive voters. Biden’s interactions with voters are often painful to watch: while Bernie Sanders is good at engaging voters he disagrees with and can get even a Fox News audience cheering for his socially progressive agenda, Joe Biden swears at voters, insults them, and tells them to go and vote for his opponents. It’s a terrible approach to politics: Hillary Clinton and Mitt Romney learned the hard way that when you insult voters themselves, you turn them off. Biden will see his support tank as voters realize he is incompetent and he continues the approach that caused him to tank in Iowa and New Hampshire.
3. Joe Biden has very serious vulnerabilities that are going to be exposed — Biden has a history of lying about himself. His first presidential run ended in scandal, because Biden was caught fictionalizing details of his autobiography, making up awards that he had never won and lifting autobiographical details from the speeches of other politicians. Biden still does this: he has been pretending to have been a Civil Rights activist, lying about his voting record, lying about his support for the Iraq war, and making up fictitious incidents in his life that never happened. Biden’s pitch to America is that his moral character is superior to Donald Trump’s, but it will be impossible for him to make that case clearly when multiple women have accused him of inappropriately touching them and Biden has a long history of telling lies.
4. Bernie Sanders does not have any of these weaknesses and is clearly the candidate best positioned to beat Trump. Bernie Sanders has not lied about having been part of the civil rights movement, because he was actually part of the civil rights movement, and has earned the endorsement of the legendary Jesse Jackson. Bernie Sanders has consistently shown better judgment than Joe Biden on the issues that matter: he was a staunch opponent of the Iraq war, which reveals the kind of foreign policy judgment a president needs. When Joe Biden was pushing for cuts to Social Security, Bernie Sanders fought to make sure seniors had the safety net they needed to be comfortable in old age. Joe Biden has been a lifelong friend of the the political and economic elites, while Bernie Sanders has been a lifelong champion of the rights of ordinary people.
5. Bernie Sanders is the only candidate who can deal with the most pressing challenges of our time. — Climate change is one of the most serious challenges of our time, and while Joe Biden’s campaign is stuffed with fossil fuel industry executives and their allies, Bernie’s plans for a Green New Deal represent the best chance we have of taking the necessary action to stop climate change. There is a reason why polls have shown Bernie as a better general election candidate against Trump in key states: Bernie can inspire independents and win back Trump’s own voters. He knows the struggles people face in their day to day lives: Bernie wants a healthcare plan that covers everybody, while Joe Biden would leave millions uninsured. Even people like Joe Rogan, who we might expect to be sympathetic to Donald Trump, trust Bernie Sanders because he conveys authenticity and compassion in a way that politicians like Biden do not. Bernie is the best weapon the Democrats have for taking back the White House. If Democrats don’t choose Bernie, they will be saddled with a nominee who will fumble and go down in flames, turning off the next generation of Democratic voters (who overwhelmingly reject Biden) and handing reelection to Donald Trump.
JOE BIDEN WILL LOSE TO TRUMP.
IF DEMOCRATS NOMINATE HIM, THEY WILL QUICKLY REALIZE WHAT A DISASTROUS DECISION THEY HAVE MADE.
Given the stakes of this election for the planet and the fate of democracy, we cannot take a risk like Joe Biden.
Bernie Sanders will win back the Midwest and is the Democrats’ ticket to victory in November.
To save the country from Trump, we must stop Democrats from the disaster of a Biden nomination.
For more, see: “Democrats, You Really Do Not Want to Nominate Joe Biden” Article, Audio, and Video
From a well respected friend and intensivist/A&E consultant who is currently in northern Italy:
I feel the pressure to give you a quick personal update about what is happening in Italy, and also give some quick direct advice about what you should do.
First, Lombardy is the most developed region in Italy and it has a extraordinary good healthcare, I have worked in Italy, UK and Australia and don’t make the mistake to think that what is happening is happening in a 3rd world country.
The current situation is difficult to imagine and numbers do not explain things at all. Our hospitals are overwhelmed by Covid-19, they are running 200% capacity.
We’ve stopped all routine, all ORs have been converted to ITUs and they are now diverting or not treating all other emergencies like trauma or strokes. There are hundreds of patients with severe resp failure and many of them do not have access to anything above a reservoir mask.
Patients above 65 or younger with comorbidities are not even assessed by ITU, I am not saying not tubed, I’m saying not assessed and no ITU staff attends when they arrest. Staff are working as much as they can but they are starting to get sick and are emotionally overwhelmed.
My friends call me in tears because they see people dying in front of them and they con only offer some oxygen. Ortho and pathologists are being given a leaflet and sent to see patients on NIV. PLEASE STOP, READ THIS AGAIN AND THINK.
We have seen the same pattern in different areas a week apart, and there is no reason that in a few weeks it won’t be the same everywhere, this is the pattern:
1)A few positive cases, first mild measures, people are told to avoid ED but still hang out in groups, everyone says not to panic
2)Some moderate resp failures and a few severe ones that need tube, but regular access to ED is significantly reduced so everything looks great
3)Tons of patients with moderate resp failure, that overtime deteriorate to saturate ICUs first, then NIVs, then CPAP hoods, then even O2.
4)Staff gets sick so it gets difficult to cover for shifts, mortality spikes also from all other causes that can’t be treated properly.
Everything about how to treat them is online but the only things that will make a difference are: do not be afraid of massively strict measures to keep people safe, if governments won’t do this at least keep your family safe, your loved ones with history of cancer or diabetes or any transplant will not be tubed if they need it even if they are young. By safe I mean YOU do not attend them and YOU decide who does and YOU teach them how to.
Another typical attitude is read and listen to people saying things like this and think “that’s bad dude” and then go out for dinner because you think you’ll be safe.
We have seen it, you won’t be if you don’t take it seriously. I really hope it won’t be as bad as here but prepare.
Bloomberg doesn’t relate to the majority of Americans 
There’s a way to slowly decrease the benefits or slowly raise the eligibility age for medicare and social security, there’s ways to have more co-pay on medicaid which will two things. 1) the users will pay a little more but 2) they’ll think twice before they use services – Michael Bloomberg, Mar 29 2012 
It is about as dumb a policy as I can think of [raising taxes on those earning more than $500,000 to fund pre-K programs] – Michael Bloomberg, Oct 8 2012 
I, for example, am not in favor, have never been in favor of raising the minimum wage – Michael Bloomberg, Jul 29 2015 
I could teach anybody — even people in this room, no offense intended — to be a farmer. It’s a… you dig a hole, you put a seed in, you put dirt on top, add water, up comes the corn. – Michael Bloomberg, Nov 17 2016 
If you show up, with prostate cancer. You’re… 95 years old, we should say have a nice life, there’s no cure, we can’t do anything. – Michael Bloomberg 
[If I had the ability] to design the system… you would say we’re going to cut the number of teachers in half, you would double the compensation of them, and you would weed out all of the bad ones, just have good teachers. Double the class size with a better teacher is a good deal for the students – Michael Bloomberg 
Jan 1 2007 – Dec 31 2013. Bloomberg compared teacher and civil liberties unions to NRA extremists 
Nov 17 2008. Bloomberg blamed the poor for causing the 2008 economic collapse 
Mar 20 2012. Mayor Bloomberg banned food donations to homeless shelters 
May 31 2012. Mayor Bloomberg vetoed, then refused to enforce, a living wage bill passed by the New York City Council 
Jan 1 2020 – Ongoing. Bloomberg owns more wealth than 125 million Americans, combined 
Bloomberg is not running an honorable campaign 
[I couldn’t run for President] unless I was willing to change all my views – Michael Bloomberg 
There was a guy, Bernie Sanders, who would have beaten Donald Trump. The polls show he would have walked away with it. – Michael Bloomberg 
Nov 21 2019 – Jan 31 2020. Bloomberg has spent at least $450 million on ads since launching his campaign 
Jan 31 2020. The DNC removed a debate rule that allowed Bloomberg to participate in the ninth debate, after missing the first eight 
Feb 1 2020 – Ongoing. Bloomberg is paying hundreds of influencers to post endorsements and send friends positive messages about him  
Feb 19 2020. Bloomberg doctored a segment of the 2020 Democratic debate to make himself look good 
There’s this enormous cohort of black and Latino males aged, let’s say, 16 to 25 that don’t have jobs, don’t have any prospects, don’t know how to find jobs, don’t know that the — what their skill sets are, don’t know how to behave in the workplace, where they have to work collaboratively and collectively – Michael Bloomberg, Aug 4 2011 
95% of your murders and murderers and murder victims fit one M.O. You can just take the description and Xerox it and pass it out to all the cops. They are male minorities 15 to 25. – Michael Bloomberg, Feb 5 2015 
[You don’t need a nanny], all you need is some black who doesn’t have to speak English to rescue it [your baby] from a burning building. – Michael Bloomberg 
I think we disproportionately stop whites too much and minorities too little – Michael Bloomberg 
I would argue that today we are more segregated in America certainly than we were in terms of race than we were a dozen years ago. And yet, we’re just finishing up eight years with our first black President. Why are we more separated than we were before. That is the question … ask the President [Obama] that’s his job. – Michael Bloomberg 
The way you get guns out of minorities’ hands is to throw them up against the wall and frisk them – Michael Bloomberg 
Jan 1 2002 – Dec 31 2013. Bloomberg implemented stop and frisk as NYC mayor 
All of you girls line up to give him [oral sex] as a wedding present. – Michael Bloomberg, Jan 1 1989 
What the hell did you do a thing like that [get pregnant] for? – Michael Bloomberg 
Kill it [your baby]! Great! Number 16 [women who are pregnant or new mothers at the company]! – Michael Bloomberg 
And Mike [Bloomberg] came out and I remember he said, ‘Are you going to kill it [abort the pregnancy]?’ And that stopped everything. And I couldn’t believe it. – David Zielenziger 
I’d like to do that piece of meat. – Michael Bloomberg 
If women wanted to be appreciated for their brains, they’d go to the library instead of to Bloomingdale’s – Michael Bloomberg 
I know for a fact that any self-respecting woman who walks past a construction site and doesn’t get a whistle will turn around and walk past again and again until she does get one. – Michael Bloomberg 
What a bunch of misfits [the British royal family] — a gay, an architect, that horsey faced lesbian, and a kid who gave up Koo Stark for some fat broad. – Michael Bloomberg 
What, is the guy dumb and blind? What the hell is he marrying you for? – Michael Bloomberg 
If your conversation during a presidential election is about some guy wearing a dress and whether he, she, or it can go to the locker room with their daughter, that’s not a winning formula for most people – Michael Bloomberg 
Bloomberg is out of touch with younger generations 
[Y]oung people listened to [Bernie Sanders] and they said, ‘Yeah, Democratic: That’s good. Socialism: Yeah, that’s that social media stuff – Michael Bloomberg, Dec 8 2016 
DealDash is a penny auction site where users have to pay money for each bid they place. This means you’re spending money regardless of winning.
Some people call this system a scam. In some ways it is. There are many shady practices I’ve uncovered in this article that make Deal Dash seem not legit. But still, it is entirely possible to not only win on Deal Dash, but win a ridiculous amount of items while spending close to nothing.
I’ll go through how exactly: DealDash.com works, what the products are, how the most active users make the most of their bids, and how you can game the system to, in essence, get unlimited free bids. These are secrets not commonly known, and aren’t shared anywhere other than right here on LetsGoBidding.com, the only place to get completely free Deal Dash statistics and strategy.
How They Bring You In
You’ve seen the commercials. You can win that high end electronics device for mere dollars! Over 90% off retail prices!
Obviously this sounds too good to be true, and if it were true it would be a terrible business model. Yet they have been going strong since 2009.
A website that has to put “Fair & Honest” in its own title is already a little suspect. Let’s dive in to see if DealDash is as legitimate as their claim.
The Fine Print
We can see that the retail price, used for comparison, is the “Buy It Now” price. This is very important and we’ll come back to it later.
The end price includes two factors: The price of the item it was bid up to, and the cost of each bid spent on the auction. Since bids aren’t free, there really is no upper limit to how much money someone can inadvertently spend on an auction. Even the people who don’t win end up losing money. This makes it different from what you would expect from a typical auction.
Here’s another interesting statistic. 54% of auction winners save 90% off Buy It Now Prices or more. Is DealDash really giving away over half of their items at a 90% discount?
No, They’re not.
The Buy It Now Price is Extremely Overinflated
The best way to check for good deals is to find how much the item sold for on Ebay.com. Whatever products are selling for (not being listed as) on Ebay is the fair market value of that item. Since many items on DealDash can also be bought on Ebay it’s easy to see how much real people are actually paying for them.
A dinnerware set significantly overpriced on Dealdash.
Another example where DealDash is claiming a jacket is worth 25-times more than what it sold for on Ebay.
These aren’t cherry-picked. You’ll see a steep overvaluation of nearly every item. There’s a reason DealDash gets away with this. They can point to each of these product’s exorbitantly high retail price because:
80% of all Products listed on DealDash were made by companies associated with DealDash
You’ve probably never heard of Galton Voysey, but you’ve definitely seen their products while browsing through DealDash.com. You can find a complete takedown of the company and its relationship to Dealdash. In summary, The founder of DealDash is also the chairman of Galton Voysey. Almost all of the products they make are manufactured in China and sold exclusively for Dealdash.com.
It’s difficult to determine what all the DealDash products are, because they are designed not to be publicly associated with each other. I believe the following is at least a partial list of brands made in house and specifically marketed to be used by DealDash.
This doesn’t mean they are bad products, only that you know nothing about them; Which makes it difficult to tell what they are worth.
DealDash has complete control over the Buy It Now price
Deal Dash’s main claim to being “Fair and Honest” is that you can get your bids returned for free, if you buy the item at full Buy It Now price.
Is this really fair when DealDash can arbitrarily make the Buy It Now price whatever they like? If anyone tries to suethem, they can point to these real products with real prices (that they control) to claim that the system is fair. If you don’t win, you can buy the product at retail value and get your bids back. Except the retail value is so much more than the item is worth.
I don’t have statistics to back up how many people actually do use the Buy It Now feature, but it can’t be many. In most cases you would be spending multiple times more money than the product is worth. This is unfair to those who place bids but lose an auction, but is it even possible to win?
Easy Beginner Auctions
After you make a new account on Deal Dash, you will get additional auctions on the main page that other regular users will not see. Mostly they’re Beanies or gift cards. There’s nothing specifically labeling them as beginner auctions. The only way to tell is if:
A. The auction ends with zero bids placed. (This almost never happens) B. Copy the url of the auction to an incognito browser. If it’s a beginner auction it will redirect you to the home page listing of all auctions.
There’s no time limit here, you’ll keep getting the same items over and over again every couple minutes so wait until you see something you like. A better strategy would be to get whatever has the highest Buy It Now price, but I’ll explain that later.
Just remember, this will be the only easy win you will ever find on Deal Dash. It’s designed to sucker you in, make you think you’re good at Deal Dash. The truth is, the game was rigged from the start.
The Same People on DealDash Keep Winning
If you’re already active on Deal Dash, you’ve probably noticed a trend where the same people are winning every auction. You’ve certainly seen the name UncleTan before. This is because the same handful of people are winning most of the auctions.
The top 1% of winners win 60% of all auctions. If you’re bidding against one of these professional auction bidders, you’re going to lose. Their reputation is what makes them so successful. Few people even try to bid against them. They will throw down thousands of bids exceeding an item’s value just so you will never try to challenge them again.
This is a recent example where UncleTan won an auction by bidding over 8000 times on an inexpensive laptop. If we assume each bid costs $0.12 (which is a reasonable price for bids), UncleTan used over $1000 worth of bids to win a single $479 item. He may do this on any auction. You would be foolish to bid against him.
You might be wondering about the people who are winning thousands of auctions, what are they doing with their winnings? The answer is critical to how Deal Dash works, and it isn’t what you expect.
Selling Cheap Deal Dash Winnings on Ebay
I have heard the theory that there is a cabal of elite Deal Dash users winning all the auctions so that they can resell the items on Ebay for profit. There are a few problems with this theory.
First, if this was a feasible strategy, wouldn’t it make more sense for DealDash to skip the middle man and sell all their in-house products directly on ebay? One problem, as we’ve already shown, is that items consistently sell on Ebay for a small fraction of what DealDash says they are worth.
While we do see exclusive DealDash products being sold on ebay, we can easily check the scale at which this is happening. On this site I have records of every auction won on Dealdash.com. I can take a popular Deal-Dash-Only item such as the Volsen Atom Cordless Vacuum and compare how many times it has been auctioned off on DealDash and how many times it has sold on Ebay in the past 3 months.
My statistics show this vacuum cleaner has been won 440 times on DealDash the past 3 months. During the same period, it has been sold on ebay twice.
The volume of DealDash exclusive items being re-sold on ebay is nowhere near high enough to explain what all these consistent winners are doing with their thousands of wins.
We’ll take a closer look at one of the most eye-brow-raising products being sold on DealDash to get a better picture(or should I say painting?) of what is really going on.
The Far East Collection of Paintings
In DealDash’s own words, this is how the Far East Collection describes itself:
All their paintings are conveniently anonymous, but trust them, these are works of arts worth thousands of dollars! Odder still, they aren’t anonymous. All of them are signed, often by the same artist.
Their facebook page is completely empty, except it has over 1000 likes! Also their website has been Suspended for some time, but even looking at it on the wayback machine, there was never anything on it. Yet still, somehow, an endless stream of anonymous paintings are making their way onto Dealdash.
It gets even weirder.
Look at the statistics for any of the Far East Collection paintings on the letsgobidding.com website. You will see that the same painting has been auctioned and won dozens of times before.
Too add another dimension to this, I was able to find this exact same painting listed on ebay, which has been sitting unsold for months. At the same time the very same painting was being auctioned on DealDash.
If you look at the details I’ve collected on this site, it seems the same paintings get auctioned off every 4-5 days. Unlike other auctions, there is no list of previous winners or any indication that this item has been won before on DealDash!
I suppose it’s not technically illegal If DealDash has a factory of people making the same painting over and over again. Although, is a retail price in the thousands really right for this type of artwork?
This is an interesting view into the sketchy business practices surrounding Deal Dash, but it still doesn’t explain what all the winners are doing with their spoils. I don’t have much proof, but I have a pretty good theory.
Nobody is Buying Anything
Let’s put aside the theory that DealDash has a bunch of fake accounts that bid up auctions and prevent you from winning. DealDash isn’t scamming you that obviously. They don’t need to do that because their own users will do it for them.
Every time you win an auction, you can either buy the item at the auction price, or return the item and get a number (typically the Buy It Now price) of bids in return.
My theory is that all of the frequent bidders, including UncleTan, are exchanging wins for bids on just about every auction as a means to increase their pool of bids. For free.
To make this theory work, we would have to see that the top bidders are able to consistently win auctions with fewer bids than the Buy It Now price. If they won an auction while using less bids than the Buy It Now Price then they could exchange that win for more bids which would net them even more bids than they started out with!
For example, if someone won one of the Far East Collections paintings with 1000 bids, and the painting had a Buy It Now price of $2000. That win could be exchanged for 2000 bids. It would double the bids and cost nothing.
And it’s true! Look at the statistics, there are many big players who are winning auctions with fewer than the Buy It Now price number of bids. As of this writing, UncleTan has a system where he can get back 132% of all bids he places. He’s not even the best at this trick.
I think this theory makes the most sense, how else can these players put down thousands of bids on items they couldn’t want, have no use for, and aren’t re-selling on Ebay? It’s because they don’t want the item, they want the bids. It’s a never ending cycle of farming bids so they never have to pay for their own. During this time, DealDash is profiting off the 99% of users who can’t see what’s really happening.
The DealDash.com Economy
I’ve gone through multiple facets of how Deal Dash works in this article, and they all fit together into the overall profit model of DealDash. It’s based on 5 core principles.
The majority of the Products auctioned on DealDash are made cheaply by in-house companies who are designed to have their products auctioned on DealDash.
Since DealDash controls the retail pricing of these products they can market them as “luxury” items worth an excessive amount. This leads to elevated Buy It Now prices.
Smart users take advantage of the high Buy It Now prices to win auctions below that threshold so that they can exchange them to increase their bid pool.
Everyone else who may actually be interested in buying the products has to compete with users (with nearly unlimited free bids) who are bidding only to increase their bids.
Buying the item at Retail price to get your bids returned is a sham. The products are worth nowhere near their Buy It Now prices and nobody does or should use that feature. People who lose auctions lose all their bids and that goes directly into DealDash’s profits.
Put it all together and the average DealDash user will find themselves out of a lot of money with nothing but a beginner auction beanie to show for it.
Is there anything that can be done?
DealDash has tried to remedy this somewhat with their No Exchange auctions. I don’t see those any more, and I wouldn’t expect them to keep it up. Take away the exchange for bids option and the whole profit system falls apart. It might also reveal the secret that their most active users are exchanging instead of buying.
There’s really only one way to win.
How to be a Shark on Deal Dash
If you can’t beat them, join them. Learn from the big players on how they are able to win auction after auction with the least amount of bids. You can go through each of the auctions they participate in and how they won. Learn which auctions have the best return, which other users to avoid, and when to admit defeat. Even the best don’t win every time.
All the statistics and tools you need to win are right here on LetsGoBidding.com. It’s completely, and always will be free.
Go ahead, sign up, buy your first bid pack, use one bid to buy the highest Buy It Now priced item you can get from a beginner auction. Then exchange it for more bids. Keep using your bids to win more auctions you can exchange for more bids. Soon you’ll have enough bids pooled up that you can try to get one of the serious items: A new Iphone, or even a car.
Most people who have only seen the commercial won’t know all this. For them, Deal Dash is one big scam and they’re going to come out of this much poorer. But if you’re smart, and you understand what it takes, you have a very good shot at coming out ahead. Deal Dash isn’t a scam. It’s just shady capitalism that anyone can take advantage of, but only if they know how.
I have been following the news of the 2019 Coronavirus. One popular fringe theory regarding the coronavirus origin is that it may have originated in a lab in Wuhan. I have found interesting information regarding the Wuhan Virology Institute that I have not seen mentioned on the news. I thought I would share this information, as I have no idea what else to do.
1.) In 2017, researchers at the Wuhan Virology Institute claimed to be the first lab to edit the bat genome using CRISPR-CAS technology (DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0182866 ). While this is not incredibly striking, it means that scientists in Wuhan have had 2+ years of technology to potentially edit the bat genome and create/explore new virus variations.
Origin and evolution of pathogenic coronaviruses (3-2019) Link
Characterization of a New Member of Alphacoronavirus with Unique Genomic Features in Rhinolophus Bats (4-2019) Link
Detection and characterization of a novel bat-borne coronavirus in Singapore using multiple molecular approaches (10-2019) Link
Discovery of Bat Coronaviruses through Surveillance and Probe Capture-Based Next-Generation Sequencing (1-29-2020; submitted Nov. 6 2019) Link
3.) On the Wuhan Institute of Virology webpage, lab pictures have been posted. At least two pictures from the laboratory of Shi Zhengli shows handling of bats/bat samples with little to no protective equipment, in one case a student has no masks and only gloves while clearly seen holding a bat. I have posted all images here: https://imgur.com/a/GwiHVmk in case they get taken down in the future. The native link is: http://220.127.116.11:8082/web/55577/33
4.) The news has reported that the Wuhan Institute of Virology was 20 miles from the Huanan Market. In fact, from Baidu, it seems there are multiple buildings that constitute the Wuhan Institute of Virology (search 武汉病毒所 under Baidu Maps). The nearest building is actually only 20 km (12 miles) from the marketplace, much closer than the news has reported. However, I have no way of knowing which building bat research was performed at.
Overall, this raises 3 immediate questions:
1.) What genomic editing was done at the Institute? And could this be related to the nCOV?
2.) How were bat samples handled and deposited? Was proper protocols being followed? I think this needs to be investigated.
3.) Is it possible to evaluate the relevant genome elements of the bats/viruses studied at the Wuhan Institute in relation to the current Coronavirus? I am sure scientists have thought about this, but I have not seen any work done so far.
When China’s leaders finally declare victory against the outbreak of the new and deadly coronavirus, they will undoubtedly credit the Communist Party of China’s leadership. But the truth is just the opposite: the party is again responsible for this calamity.
CLAREMONT, CALIFORNIA – An outbreak of a new coronavirus that began in the Chinese city of Wuhan has already infected over 4,000 people – mostly in China, but also in several other countries, from Thailand to France to the United States – and killed more than 100. Given China’s history of disease outbreaks – including of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and African swine fever – and officials’ apparent awareness of the need to strengthen their capacity to address “major risks,” how could this happen?
It should be no surprise that history is repeating itself in China. To maintain its authority, the Communist Party of China must keep the public convinced that everything is going according to plan. That means carrying out systemic cover-ups of scandals and deficiencies that may reflect poorly upon the CPC’s leadership, instead of doing what is necessary to respond.
This pathological secrecy hobbles the authorities’ capacity to respond quickly to epidemics. The SARS epidemic of 2002-03 could have been contained much sooner had Chinese officials, including the health minister, not deliberately concealed information from the public. Once proper disease-control and prevention measures were implemented, SARS was contained within months.
Yet China seems not to have learned its lesson. Although there are important differences between today’s coronavirus epidemic and the SARS outbreak – including far greater technological capacity to monitor disease – they may have the CPC’s habit of cover-ups in common.
To be sure, at first glance, China’s government has appeared to be more forthcoming about the latest outbreak. But, although the first case was reported on December 8, the Wuhan municipal health commission didn’t issue an official notice until several weeks later. And, since then, Wuhan officials have downplayed the seriousness of the disease and deliberately sought to suppress news coverage.
That notice maintained that there was no evidence that the new illness could be transmitted among humans, and claimed that no health-care workers had been infected. The commission repeated these claims on January 5, though 59 cases had been confirmed by then. Even after the first death was reported on January 11, the commission continued to insist that there was no evidence that it could be transmitted among humans or that health-care workers had been affected.
Throughout this critical period, there was little news coverage of the outbreak. Chinese censors worked diligently to remove references to the outbreak from the public sphere, which is far easier today than it was during the SARS epidemic, thanks to the government’s dramatically tighter control over the Internet, media, and civil society. Police have harassed people for “spreading rumors” about the disease.
According to one study, references to the outbreak on WeChat – a popular Chinese messaging, social media, and mobile-payment app – spiked between December 30 and January 4, around the time when the Wuhan municipal health commission first acknowledged the outbreak. But mentions of the disease subsequently plummeted.
References to the new coronavirus rose slightly on January 11, when the first death was reported, but then quickly disappeared again. It was only after January 20 – following reports of 136 new cases in Wuhan, as well as cases in Beijing and Guangdong – that the government rolled back its censorship efforts. Mentions of coronavirus exploded.
Yet again, the Chinese government’s attempts to protect its image proved costly, because they undermined initial containment efforts. The authorities have since switched gears, and their strategy now appears to be to show how seriously the government is taking the disease by imposing drastic measures: a blanket travel ban on Wuhan and neighboring cities in Hubei province, which together have a population of 35 million.
At this point, it is unclear whether and to what extent these steps are necessary or effective. What is clear is that China’s initial mishandling of the coronavirus outbreak means that thousands will be infected, hundreds may die, and the economy, already weakened by debt and the trade war, will take another hit.
But perhaps the most tragic part of this story is that there is little reason to hope that next time will be different. The survival of the one-party state depends on secrecy, media suppression, and constraints on civil liberties. So, even as Chinese President Xi Jinping demands that the government increase its capacity to handle “major risks,” China will continue to undermine its own – and the world’s – safety, in order to bolster the CPC’s authority.
When China’s leaders finally declare victory against the current outbreak, they will undoubtedly credit the CPC’s leadership. But the truth is just the opposite: the party is again responsible for this calamity.
Editor’s note: Colleges and universities in China have been instructed to steer clear of seven topics in their courses. Reasons provided by Xi Jinping administration showed an inconceivable retrogression in Chinese Communist Party (CCP) ideology, probably an explicit evidence of the leader’s sense of insecurity and his anxiety in losing powers to rivalries.
1. Universal Values
Cause: they challenges or even expels Chinese commmunist party leaders and the party’s leadership
2. Freedom of Press
Cause: The idea upsets the stability of CCP and society
3. Civil Society
Cause: It creates a new force at grassroots level independent of the CCP
4. Civil Rights
Cause: they upset the CCP’s macro-control over citizens
5. CCP’s historical aberrations Cause: this might undermine CCP’s legitimacy to rule or overturn CCP
6. Elite Cronyism / privileged capitalist class
Cause: it ‘distorts’ the fact that political reform necessitates economic liberalization.
7. Judicial Independence
Cause: it challenges CCP’s rule and authority if the courts are no longer under the direct control of CCP
If micro-management thrives and there is no trust in your organization, you are looking down the barrel of a toxic work culture. If you don’t believe me, use one of the many employee engagement products to find out for yourself.
Tell the people in your company that you are going to be surveying them every three months and they can say whatever they want because it’s completely anonymous. After the first survey, watch the comments and feedback pour in. Keep encouraging your people to say what they think.
Toxic work cultures make going to work feel miserable.
In a toxic culture, new ideas can’t thrive, people can’t be honest, bullying unfortunately occurs, leaders are given power that can go to their heads and fuel their egos, and an eerie feeling occurs at your company’s town hall/all hands when leaders ask for questions.
High performers quit toxic work cultures. Every day on platforms such as LinkedIn, high performers are getting messages from recruiters and competitors who are selling the dream that the grass is greener. If your company has a toxic work culture, high performers have nothing to lose by moving on and trying another company.
High performers know their strengths and are also smart enough to realize that if they can perform well in a toxic work culture, they can thrive in a Culture First company that looks after its employees.
If your high performers look disengaged or show little enthusiasm, that is a red flag that your organization is toxic.
Here is what a toxic work culture looks like from someone who has worked in one:
People can’t make decisions
Basic decisions that can cause customers to leave, can’t be made. A simple refund for a client that never received the service they paid for takes weeks when it should take minutes.
When a decision needs to be made to change a product because customers are leaving by the dozen, a decision can’t be made. It’s easier to make no decision than it is to make a decision that admits things need to change.
Working from home or part-time work is seen as lazy
Management doesn’t allow people to work from home because they want to watch people. Working from home means you’ll be less productive and take advantage of the situation.
The fact you might have a newborn baby at home and don’t want to do the two-hour commute each day so you can work more is ignored.
Then, staff who want to work part-time because they have a side hustle, children, or a second job are prevented from doing so or referred to as “lazy.”
Here’s the thing: part-time work and working from home is not lazy.
Both forms of work allow people to have lives and they will reward you (if you allow them) with loyalty and commitment to their work.
Excluding part-time work or working from home is limiting your talent pool severely because it is such a common way of working. Being chained to a desk in an office does not make you high performing or a profitable asset; being allowed to be flexible and treated like a human does.
Entrepreneurship is frowned upon
Toxic work cultures hate entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs because they are scared to death that they are going to leave and steal their ideas.
Thriving work cultures take people that have experience owning a business and utilize them like their secret weapon. They promote entrepreneurship because they want people to feel as though it is their business and they can make decisions.
Utilize entrepreneurs while you have them, and if they leave, wish them all the best. Entrepreneurs are the reason that businesses are created in the first place — remember that.
“MANAGEMENT vs. US” culture
Leaders are referred to as management and the front line staff are told that the company is cutting costs.
Meanwhile, the leaders are having deliciously catered for meals off silver plates, taking black limos to meetings and spending crazy amounts of money on social media marketing that makes them look good.
Front line staff say things such as “Management really needs to look at problem X.”
In a non-toxic culture, management and staff are one and people are accountable. Sentences like “Management needs to do…” are not relevant because staff can make decisions and the two sides of the business are one.
The less hierarchy, the more people feel included and that produces a thriving, collaborative culture.
The number of hours you work matter
Judging people by when they start work and how late they work is irrelevant. We all know that the number of hours we work has nothing to do with output.
You can be at your desk for 12-hours straight and be doing nothing other than surfing the web and complaining to your pals about the company you work for.
Culture First companies understand that output produces results and that on some days you will be productive, and on other days you may have suffered the loss of a loved one or be feeling unwell. Regardless, all that is taken into account is results.
And here’s the kicker: when the results are not there, leaders take accountability and coach their people out of it or help them get a role they are better suited for.
If leaders are watching the clock, you have a problem.
In-between the formal layers of hierarchy, there are these soft spongy bits called “preferential treatment.”
These are people that are given extra privileges for enforcing the leaderships toxic culture and talking behind people’s backs in order to gain something. Instead of being part of the solution, they make the problem bigger and are rewarded for it.
Talking down to people who have found themselves in the wrong role
People who are under-performing are called all sorts of nasty names and treated unfairly. They are seen as stupid or not good at business.
In thriving cultures, these people are helped, coached and given feedback. Leaders stand up and help them find the right role if it turns out; for example, they applied for sales and don’t really enjoy talking to customers.
People in the wrong roles can be some of the best staff you have in your business if you can be compassionate enough to give them a second chance in a different role.
The appreciation that comes from being helped rather than shamed converts into long-term loyalty that rebuilds careers, and becomes the basis of a thriving culture.
Shaming low performance
If there are punishments for low performance, you have a big problem.
Shaming people won’t make them perform better; it will make them hate the leadership team and the company even more.
This hatred will then be directed towards your customers and you’ll have more of those “Why are we not making money?” meetings when really it’s your culture that sucks.
A rotating door policy
When people decide to leave or mention they are thinking of leaving, they are talked about as traitors.
Having people leave regularly is normal and acceptable in toxic work environments. There are no exit interviews or questions around why a particular leader has had so many people leave in a short space of time.
Each time, the excuse is “Johnny was crap, so it’s a good thing he is leaving.”
When you scour the company’s staff on LinkedIn, you see that staff don’t last long at the company.
Asking staff to write positive reviews online to cover up the toxicity
Yes, it happens. Toxic cultures can easily be recognized by former staff leaving negative reviews on places such as GlassDoor.
In a toxic work culture, business leaders panic and try to cover up the error in their leadership by asking staff to leave fluffy, fake, in-genuine reviews online to cover up the bad ones.
You can’t hide a toxic work culture; you can only fix it by recognizing it and changing how you treat people.
Values are spoken of rarely
They are written on the company website, mentioned at the annual conference, but never talked about in the context of everyday work.
When talking to a client or making a decision, the values are forgotten about.
In a thriving culture, you can’t even get hired unless you can demonstrate the values. The references you provide are asked about values, you are required to provide evidence and you may even be asked to do a case study where the values will be assessed.
At the end of the year when performance reviews are had, profit and revenue is only one small part of the conversation. Leaders focus in on the company values because they know that it’s the glue that holds everything together and ultimately produces revenue.
SOLUTION: It starts at the top
Start with trusting people first
Earn people’s respect
Be compassionate to your people’s circumstances
Give your people development opportunities
Respect the way people like to get their work done
Encourage autonomy of decision-making
Let people be themselves (race, religion, sexual preference, gender, background — who cares)
Toxic cultures cause share prices to drop and profits to plummet. Instead of looking at spreadsheets and accountants for answers, look at your people. Your people are what cause profits to go up or down.
Identify the problems of your company’s culture, own them, and then become obsessed with asking your people how you can change them. Then, implement the changes.
Fight toxic work cultures by making your company transform into being Culture First. It starts with people.
If you want to increase your productivity and learn some more valuable life hacks, then join my private mailing list on timdenning.net