Chinese Fudge Factory Doubles Output | The Institute for Creation Research
Chinese Fudge Factory Doubles Output
Recent reports show that Chinese “fudge” is being produced in Wuhan at numbers now doubling earlier reports.

The official Covid-19 death toll for Wuhan has been revised [as of April 17, 2020] up by 1,290 to 3,869 as life in the city returns to something like normal as many restrictions are lifted….Authorities in the Chinese city where the global coronavirus pandemic began late last year have revised its death toll upwards by 50%, as the government in Beijing again denied there had been any cover-up in its handling of the crisis.

A local government taskforce in Wuhan charged with virus prevention added 1,290 fatalities to the city’s toll, taking the confirmed count to 3,869 from a previously reported 2,579. Wuhan, a city of 11 million people, suffered more fatalities than any other city in China as residents struggled get help [sic] its overwhelmed medical system.1

Is this governmental science fiction what accountants call “cooking the books,” what historians call political revisionism, and what scientists attribute to “fudge” factors?2

Maybe this doubled mortality statistic has a more benign explanation, like the record-keepers were just too busy reacting to the crisis to accurately count coronavirus corpses.

The revision comes after weeks of scepticism [sic], from both within and outside China, over the officially reported figures. Officials said Friday’s revision was the result of incorrect or delayed reporting and not because information had been suppressed.

“Medical workers at some facilities might have been preoccupied with saving lives and there existed delayed reporting, underreporting or misreporting, but there has never been any cover-up and we do not allow cover-ups,” said China’s foreign ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian at a news briefing in Beijing.1

But this misinformation—whether accidental or faked—is not surprising, as ICR has recently indicated.

Coronavirus expert Ralph Baric, from the University of North Carolina, is uneasy about the numbers coming out of China. “I’m very suspicious about anything they’re saying,” Baric said, pointing to the low numbers China is reporting from other provinces in the country. “The math says there should be a lot more cases.”3

Lamentably, statistical fudge factors have plagued scientific statistics in many contexts, both inside and outside China, and in diverse scientific fields beyond the healthcare industry.2, 4, 5

Of course, having debunked fake science for decades, ICR scientists are never shocked when evolution-based reports are proven false.

How is this relevant to us today, as we strive to separate real-world science “wheat” from misinformation “chaff” and understand what’s really happening in the world of scientific research and education even beyond pandemics?

Is there something we can learn from these false statistical reports that will aid our understanding of politically controversial scientific reporting in non-healthcare arenas, such as dinosaur DNA research,6 radiometric dating chronologies,7 animal depopulation alarmism,8 and allegations of anthropogenic global warming/climate change?8, 9

Think about it.

Keep your eyes open. Social agenda motivations matter. Don’t trust anything that is popularly promoted just because it comes from a scientist, whether it be evolutionary natural selection, uniformitarianism-based deep time, alarmist global warming hype, or suspicious healthcare statistics.

And if a ton of money or political power is at stake, don’t swallow whatever was just offered for popular consumption. It might be that the scientist-salesman is marketing freshly baked fudge.2

References
1. Kuo, Lily. 2020. China denies cover-up as Wuhan coronavirus deaths revised up 50%. The Guardian. Posted on theguardian.com April 17, 2020, and accessed April 17, 2020.
2. Johnson, J. J. S. Hot Fudge Sundaes and Cherry Picked Statistics. Creation Science Update. Posted on ICR.org April 19, 2020, accessed April 20, 2020. See also Proverbs 20:10, 23; Micah 6:11.
3. Suspicion was expressed prior to Wuhan’s recently published revisions. Branswell, H. 2020. Experts say confusion over coronavirus case count in China is muddying picture of spread. StatNews. Posted on statnews.com February 20, 2020, accessed April 9, 2020.
4. Fake science is no newcomer to Chinese research reports. For example, Clarey, T. 2016. Dinosaurs Designed without Feathers. Acts & Facts. 45(3). Sherwin, F. 2016. Another Feathered Dinosaur Tale. Creation Science Update. Posted on ICR.org December 10, 2016, accessed April 9, 2020.
5. Totalitarian regimes, like communist China, mandate (and thus exemplify) state-approved “consensus science.” See Guliuzza, R. J. 2009. Consensus Science: The Rise of a Scientific Elite. Acts & Facts. 38 (5): 4. However, fake science results all too frequently elsewhere when fudge factors are used to transmogrify research data for political power grabs. Johnson, J. J. S. Do You Really Have a Jaguar? Creation Science Update. Posted on ICR.org April 5, 2020.
6. Regarding degradation and suppression of DNA research data, see Johnson, J. J. S., J. P. Tomkins, and B. Thomas. 2009. Dinosaur DNA Research: Is the Tale Wagging the Evidence? Acts & Facts. 38 (10): 4-6.
7. For an example of fudge factor problems in radiometric dating, see Hebert, J. Manganese Nodules Inconsistent with Radiometric Dating. Creation Science Update. Posted on ICR.org January 30, 2020, accessed April 17, 2020. See also Johnson, J. J. S. 2018. Viking Bones Contradict Carbon-14 Assumptions. Acts & Facts. 47 (5).
8. Misreported research data produced false pictures of both Alaska Pollock populations and “climate change” dynamics. See Johnson, J. J. S. 2018. Something Fishy About Global Warming Claims. Acts & Facts. 47 (3): 21. See also Bailey, K. M. 2013. Billion-Dollar Fish: The Untold Story of Alaska Pollock. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2-44, 46-88, 199-215.
9. Johnson, J. J. S. 2020. Signs of the Times: Glacier Meltdown. Acts & Facts. 49 (4): 21.

*Dr. Johnson is Associate Professor of Apologetics and Chief Academic Officer at the Institute for Creation Research.
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