Pretty much but perhaps a bit more extreme. What if that then spins into the view of a biologic warfare act that is feeding into the growing nationalism and increasingly polarized relationships and politics both internationally and internally in some countries vested in the discussion?
Not sure if this really belongs as a reply to Charlie or as a separate comment but seems to fit into the larger bucket here.
I do agree that considering the biology from a simple fact inquiry is needed (and I think others have been doing).
However, I think a big question is not being asked here. What happens if the truth becomes known? First, I think the outcomes will be a bit asymmetric -- with proof of zoonotic origins being mostly a non-consequenceal outcome while proof of a lab leak potentially very dangerous.
Is there an element of some type of information cascade type situation here? How might that inform public debate and disclosure of facts and information?
I don't quite understand why we needed the speculative evolutionary intro here. For me it seems to be a distraction and a bit questionable.
I was also under the impression that China, and many other Asian countries where status and "face" is highly important were generally considered low trust cultures -- meaning you expect your neighbor to behave opportunistically if you're not watching closely.
A mechanic engineer once told me that anyone wanting to be one should be able to visualize in 3-D or they will struggle.
Seems to fit with your view -- and I suspect also for any chemical engineering as well.
So the whole EEZ rights that these other nations are recognized as having should just be ignored? We should just toss the entire UN bath water out?
I think giving into China on SCS and its claims that conflict with international rules it has agreed with and signed on to necessarily make a mockery of any claims to supporting a LWO or a USA commitment to any such order.
I doubt population size is really a good metric for estimating odds for a battle/invasion. Used to be that the rule of thumb was the attacking force needed 3 times the forces of the defender. In the case of Taiwan one might think a higher ratio would be required for many of the same reasons you suggest carriers are essentially sunk costs in a war.
I'm also not sure I agree with your assessment of interests or how long their agenda has been in place. There is that whole century of shame/humiliation its been looking to payback and allow a return to its rightful place as the apex culture. It has also been an imperial culture and polity for much, much longer than it's been democratic or socialist/communist.
With regards to it largely playing by the LWO rules I think that is also rather questionable. It has used its position and acceptance into the UN and other international organizations well to lay the ground work for where they are today. It did so by not playing within the spirit of the rules and often not even within the letter of the rules. But that was just long experience with bureaucratic structures and using them to further imperial goals.
Seems like a form of a fallacy of composition error. Might also be a category error in thinking the aggregate statistic that offers a (part of the) description about the distribution of the whole can be seen as representing meaningful information about individual elements.
I do think there must be some aspect of that in the situation but I don't think that is complete.
Seems that trust here is also connected to loyalty -- we're all in the same ship and will suffer the same fate. Those who have options elsewhere do have more choices but that itself doesn't imply they are less trustworthy or loyal to the group. (Though I agree some will cast them in that light.)
If things get tough what should the group action be? Just keep doing as before and suffer; even if that means the ultimate demise of the group? Maybe. Or perhaps the approach would be more like over time things change and the group also needs to evolve. Those with outside exposure, who have clearly signaled a commitment to the group by staying when they could have changes associations already, might be the very members that can help save the group while preserving the "essence" of the group. (There's probably a very large post (collection of posts) needed there ;-)
So who should members trust here and why? Seems like this is just a bit of a microcosm of what we see in lots of social and politic behaviors in the world at larger levels (which I assume the point of the OP might have been).
For those who have not heard of it, the book Exit, Voice and Loyalty, by Albert Hirshmann, might be a worthwhile read.
If you have natural gas to your house that might also be an option -- nothing to store and it's always on as it were. This would be nice for any extended use of the generator where the gas or propane tank might run out and need to be refilled requiring the generator motor to be shut off.
Also, if you want to use your car as the fuel container, check to see if the fuel rail on the manifold has a fuel outlet port -- many do for things like attaching a pressure gauge or just releasing the pressure in the line and draining. You can also splice something into the lines if not. Then you can just use the fuel pump in the tank to fill the generator (or fill the fuel jug that will fill the generator).