Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
April 14, 2020

Debunking Some Ideas About The Virus

We still do not know for certain where the virus that causes the current pandemic has come from. China's first known Covid-19 case has now been traced back to mid November. While the virus is most likely a natural creation the U.S. State Department officials now point to alleged insecurities at the safety level 4 laboratory in Wuhan which did research on similar viruses. It spreads unfounded rumors that the virus escaped from there. But the U.S. itself has many such laboratories with long documented security issues and there is reasonable suspicion that the real patient zero case has happened in the U.S.

Science will eventually solve that conundrum. Until it does there is little to gain from further speculation about it.

There is a loose group of people who think that the current pandemic is some conspiracy with a nefarious purpose.

Some of them still compare the disease caused by the novel coronavirus to a flu. Some doubt that current restrictions of their personal liberties are legitimate and justified. Still others doubt the value of masks (Yesterday I deleted a comment that argued against masks.)

It is probably a waste of time to counter the arguments of such people. But I will give it a try.

The graphs show the normal mortality rates in the England and Wales and in New York City and the current deviations from it. The flu does not create such graphs. Nor do the lock-downs.

England & Wales - Weekly Mortality - Blue: historic range, Red: 2020

Source: Ed Conway / Skynews - bigger
New York City - Deaths by Month 2000-2020

Source: NY Times - bigger

A lot of the currently occurring death get misclassified. This happens in both directions. Death caused by an underlying disease may be classified as Covid-19 death if the person was tested positive. But the extreme increase of 'cardiac arrests' in New York City is certainly related to Covid-19 even as those deaths are not counted as such:

New Yorkers are making four times as many emergency calls about cardiac arrests as they did last year [...] about 200 of these heart-attack victims are being pronounced dead at the scene each day, up from around 30 this time last year.


New York, Cardiac Arrests

Source: Economist - bigger

Some people in 'western' nations fear for their freedom and mistrust their current governments when they order a lock-down. There must be some nefarious purpose behind it. But why have the governments of China, Iran and Russia ordered similar measures? Are they part of a global conspiracy? I don't think so. Lock-downs are simply a sensible method to slow the spread of epidemics. They have been used with more or less success for hundreds of years.

Personal freedom is not an unlimited right. Diana Johnstone has given a convincing argument for its limits. One's freedom and rights end where they infringe on the freedom and rights of others:

[V]irtually all key aspects of any civilized society go contrary to the absolutism of individual rights. Every civilized society has some sort of legal system, some basic rules that everyone is expected to follow. Most civilized societies have a public education and (except for the United States) a public health insurance system designed to benefit the whole population. These elements of civilization include constraints on individual freedom.

The benefits to each individual of living in a civilized society make these constraints acceptable to just about everybody. The health of the individual depends on the health of the community, which is why everyone in most Western countries accepts a single payer health insurance system. The only exception is the United States, where the egocentricities of Ayn Rand are widely read as serious thought.

It is without doubt that masks are helpful to limit the spreading of the epidemic. An infected person begins to spread viruses by breathing, talking, singing or coughing on day 2 after the infection. Only on day 5 or 6 will the symptoms of the disease set in. Some people will never feel symptoms but can still infect others usually up to day 10 after the infection.

Masks stop the viruses one sheds from reaching other persons. They do this effectively.

Without mask

Source: Flow analyses to validate SARS-CoV-2 protective masks


With mask

Source: Flow analyses to validate SARS-CoV-2 protective masks

The German government is currently evaluating when to lift the current lock-down. It's science advisors are pushing for making it mandatory to wear a mask in all public settings. It is likely that the government will follow their advice. The above pictures show that this makes sense.




Posted by b on April 14, 2020 at 18:12 UTC | Permalink

« previous page | next page »

Bill Gates sees this as a great opportunity to create a national digital proof of vaccination database:

Strangely enough, Gate's last sentence from the above video seems to have been edited out of his entire TED interview:

I am starting to think that the "cure" may indeed be worse than the illness. Remember that all we are doing by flattening the curve is prolonging the curve. Do we really want to prolong this "curve" until they can rush manufacture a vaccine that will not able to be fully tested and create a national vaccination database to restrict the movement of anybody who hasn't paid for their mandatory preventative? Personally, I'd rather take my chances with COVID-19.

Posted by: stickdog | Apr 15 2020 20:05 utc | 301

After months of "Don't wear masks, they make things worse", even from the Surgeon General, we suddenly have a complete reversal of policy, and in New York, people without masks will now be fined.

New Yorkers must wear masks

Posted by: Trailer Trash | Apr 15 2020 20:06 utc | 302

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Apr 15 2020 18:51 utc | 288

Didn't I say "Good job Trump?"

You can take it two ways, and I meant it two ways, the what Trump is trying to do way (blame China, a fail), and the yeah it's a good thing way ...

Of course, I would prefer that we (USA) were a responsible and useful contributor in world affairs, but that is another discussion.

Posted by: Bemildred | Apr 15 2020 20:12 utc | 303

c1ue 204

The stat that I have seen cited a number of times is a 40,000 jump in deaths for every one percentage point increase in unemployment. It seems to have originated, in, or disseminated by, the film The Big Short. But an online search doesn't reveal to me the source of the state.

The point has been researched, e.g., "Rising unemployment causes higher death rates, Yale researcher shows" confirms the phenomenon but I don't see a figure cited there.

But some other researchers think that mortality goes down when unemployment goes up. It probably depends on class, and who is losing jobs (males/females, age), what types of jobs (how dangerous, how well paid), how you lost the job (fired? quit? ) etc.

Posted by: Really?? | Apr 15 2020 20:16 utc | 304

Not agreeing nor disagreeing with Realist, but it is possible that Realist's view can coexist with Govt. etc. wanting to get people back to work if Govt is pushing the idea that a vaccine will solve everything, and the vaccine happens to be the ID2020 Gates-wet-dream (ugh! what an awful thought!) vaccine mit Chip.

Posted by: Really?? | Apr 15 2020 19:57 utc | 304


What?? Ideas coexisting? No "mutual exclusivity" über alles? Nein Danke!

Sheer madness!

Why Sir I'll have you know such thoughts have been declared both fascistic and neoliberal, and even fascistically neoliberal, by MOA's chief Wall St shill, comrade bevin.

Who are you, a mere pleb, to question the Pontiff of pseudo-Communistic Rethoric?

Posted by: Realist | Apr 15 2020 20:16 utc | 305

Lots and lots of intriguing detail on this website. Reading it is an hour of lifetime well spent imho.

Posted by: Leser | Apr 15 2020 19:11 utc | 296
Ich teile Deine Ansicht.

Posted by: Really?? | Apr 15 2020 20:20 utc | 306

Paraphrasing,......."The lamps are going out all over the World, we shall not see them lit again in our lifetime."

Quoting,......."Government is a great institution. Watch it in awe and belief as yee wonder, how many it will kill this time."

Posted by: Siotu | Apr 15 2020 20:26 utc | 307

@Tob Naissur (2) You win the prize for the most ill informed comment of the week. In your mind, it’s a simple either/or decision: either shut down the economy to save a “few thousand” lives or keep the economy open and accept a “few thousand” deaths. The essential problem is that by keeping the economy open, the deaths will number in the millions, and both the healthcare system and the entire economy will be unable to cope and will freeze up. A depression will not be averted, and society may well descend into chaos. I say “no thanks” to all that.

Posted by: Rob | Apr 15 2020 20:34 utc | 308

It's strange how B. stopped his critical analysis during the covid pandemic. Everybody knows there is a virus and that it's killing certain people. Yet B. doesn't seem to care that it's used as a pretext to ramp up surveillance and monitoring like never before. The pandemic will be gone in a few weeks, but surveillance will last.

Regarding mortality rates: All new data shows it's at or even below strong influenza, i.e. about 0.1. It's mostly harmless for the general population below 65 and even above 65 if healthy. The average age of death is 80 or more in most countries. Half of the victims are from care homes. The difference is Covid is spreading/acting much faster, that's why we see the spikes in some places (far from everywhere). Sweden did 'nothing' and is already peaking.

Regarding masks: B should face the science: there is no evidence masks are useful unless you work in a hospital or you are actively sick and coughing. All data shows this and the WHO confirms it. It's of no use to post nice picture and infer something that simply isn't true.

I know that many readers have completely lost trust and respect for B. during this situation, as there was no critical analysis. I'm still on the fence, but I'd like to hear B's view on why he decided to follow mainstream fear mongering and ignore the big picture?

What I suspect is that B. has simply left his field of expertise and thus lost control. Today he writes "cardiac arrests are certainly related to covid 19". No, they happen because people with heart attacks don't visit emergency rooms anymore because they fear the virus. The data on this from many countries is very clear.

Posted by: Andy | Apr 15 2020 20:38 utc | 309

@ Posted by: james | Apr 15 2020 19:40 utc | 300

Except for the fact that Germany now has more deaths than China (and considerably more total cases).

So the correlation is not there.

Posted by: vk | Apr 15 2020 20:44 utc | 310

@Andy 313

Empirical add it may be, countries/ cities where mask wearing are almost the universal norm during this pandemic ARE having a better time. Look at China, Hong Kong, Macau, South Korea etc etc. Singapore was doing well but resisted mask wearing until recently (was told to only wear it if you're sick) and they are on the uptick now.

Can I prove a causal relationship? no. are there any other factors? most probably. However the empirical data is strong and we just don't know enough about this virus you make such rash judgement as to discount what was proven to be effective during SARS in 2002.

it's the not-invented-here syndrome again. you'll learn, at your peril.

Posted by: A.L. | Apr 15 2020 21:00 utc | 311

@ 314 vk... here is the article that triggered this idea that you might enjoy reading...Covid vs Tuberculosis: Did The Commies Do Something Right?

here is a quote from it - "Myasnikov speculates that Russia’s relatively low death rate (not infection rate, but death rate) from Covid-19, might be correlated with universal vaccination against a different disease, namely tuberculosis. It is a fact that the Soviet Union, as well as the Soviet satellite nations, practiced universal TB vaccinations as a public health measure. Which may also explain, according to Myasnikov, why the Germans have been touched so lightly by this plague: Because half of Germany used to be in the Soviet sphere and also benefited from the vaccinations."

read the article if you are interested.. regards!

Posted by: james | Apr 15 2020 21:22 utc | 312

B sweep cleaned Tnx no wonder number changed. First time posting frm my new Huawei Honor V20 phone. Eat your heart out stopid Trump I ain't buying yours anti Chinese shit!

Posted by: JC | Apr 15 2020 21:27 utc | 313

@AL 315. Not really, there are too many factors involved. There are huge differences even between countries wearing no masks (just look at the Nordic countries, or Germany vs France). And keep in mind, it's not the number of "cases" that's relevant, but the numbers of patients and deaths. This is yet another reason why masks for the general population make very little sense. Risk groups may be different, but that's a personal decision.

Posted by: tops | Apr 15 2020 21:34 utc | 314

I agree with the wearing of masks and do so myself when I go shopping with my wife. However, medical experts have stated earlier on numerous occasions that people wearing masks who are not infected makes little sense since a non-infected person cannot spread the virus if he or she coughs or sneezes. Though the availability of such masks has significantly increased over the past few weeks, the soundness of the original argument has still not been discussed under the new mandates.

It is true that a person can be infected and not even know it. However, to be honest, I have never heard of such a flu virus before. When I had the Hong Kong Flu in 1968, an epidemic that was far worse within a much tougher social environment than now when compared to the current crises, that virus ripped through one liked greased lightening. It took me 6 weeks to fully recover. As a result, I find it rather difficult to believe that if someone is infected they would have no idea that something has gotten past their immune system. But then again, I am not a medical specialist of any type.

Nonetheless, in these circumstances, to err on the side of caution is the better part of valor...

Posted by: Steve Naidamast | Apr 15 2020 21:40 utc | 315

@Tops 318

so are we to toss things out from consideration because there are too many factors involved?

countries and cities I quoted are as dense as they come, just like London and New York. you cannot ignore that and the latters are in total shambles now.

"And keep in mind, it's not the number of "cases" that's relevant"

Cases ARE relevant because that's where your very relevant patient and death figures come from.

i am lost for words...

Posted by: A.L. | Apr 15 2020 21:48 utc | 316

karlof1 @ 82

Thank you for additional input. Yes, WHO and CDC reminder directives sent to the funeral service sector. Mirrors 1918 flu.


The Prelude: “Operation Gridlock” rally extends for miles outside of Lansing.

Lockdown-Backlash Begins: Angry Crowd Surrounds Capitol, Demands Michigan Governor Reopen Economy
ZH Link

After a month of lockdowns, slamming the local economy into depression, with hundreds of thousands of job losses, people are starting to get angry and are now locking down roadways around the Lansing Capitol building demanding the governor reverse the public health order.

How long until Operation Gridlock spreads to other US cities?

Posted by: Likklemore | Apr 15 2020 21:56 utc | 317

@AL: New York is hardly in "shambles", the military hospitals are still largely empty, and there may be only minimal excess mortality by the end of the year. You and many others simply fell for the fear porn.

In a modern society, indeed, we don't take measures if there is no evidence supporting them, or as in this case of masks for non-symptomatic people, if there is evidence against them (i.e. they are not effective). It's pure placebo.

And no, cases are *not* relevant, because up to 90% show no symptoms. We *want* to achieve 70% infected as soon as possible. This is also, by the way, the best protection for those truly at risk. We can' lock them in for a year.

Posted by: Tops | Apr 15 2020 22:03 utc | 318

"...MOA's chief Wall St shill, comrade bevin." Realist@309

Not your comrade, or Wall Street's.
Where did that idea-that Communists and Wall Street were allies- come from? It is an ancient right wing charge- the projection of Wall Street's real friends, enemies of socialism and allies of the capitalist class. In a word it is what fascists claim: Goebbels used to make the same claim, it was a staple of Mussolini and the Mosleyites too, generally given an antisemitic "Jew Bolshevism" smear.
It is reassuring to have enemies who are also society's enemies too.

Posted by: bevin | Apr 15 2020 22:23 utc | 319

Andy @313
Your recommendation is criminal:
“Regarding masks: B should face the science: there is no evidence masks are useful unless you work in a hospital or you are actively sick and coughing. All data shows this and the WHO confirms it.”

I suggest you take the time to read and understand the mathematics of convexity as explained by Nassim Nicholas Taleb in his paper titled(Anti)Fragility and Convex Responses in Medicine.

Here are some quotes from his twitter site if the math is too hard.

“One comment about masks and nonlinearities that these imbeciles are not getting. Reducing exposure to viruses by 30% thanks to an "imperfect" mask does not mean reducing risk of contracting the disease by just 30%. By convexity, it must be more than 30%, can even be 95%.”

“FAT TAIL PROPERTY 90-98% of the diffusion can be reduced by limiting superspreaders & forcing masks: + Subways/buses + Conferences (especially involving psychologists/behavioral economists) + Planes + Elevators + Bars with bad Negronis + Indoor restaurants/cafés”

Idiots! Scientism kills pple's innate reasoning abilities & survival instinct You don't wear a mask jus because you have evidence that transmission is airborne. You wear a mask because YOU DON'T KNOW whether transmission is airborne.

“Other fallacy is by the *tradeoff idiots* who don't get: a) even if governments did nothing, airplanes & restaurants would be bust by now as # pple are doing bottom-up quarantines b)hospitals would be overwhelmed c)millions of young sick (many w/permanent damage) d)+uncertainty”

“imbeciles & journo fellow travelers that masks "can give a false sense of security" is interesting. Let's apply it to: +seat belts +airbags +helmets +door locks +condoms +circuit breakers +parachutes +bulletproof vests +fire alarms +scholomorochs ...”

Posted by: krollchem | Apr 15 2020 22:30 utc | 320

Likklemore @321--

Thanks for your reply! I just came across those same Trump/DeVos sponsored gran estupidos in this article. With luck, they'll all infect each other and the collective quality of human DNA will improve.

Posted by: karlof1 | Apr 15 2020 22:32 utc | 321

Posted by: A.L. | Apr 15 2020 18:44 utc | 286 evms critical care covid-19 management protocol -

Thank you for that link! Interesting that their recommended "prophylaxis" is pretty close to what I'm already taking daily. I just need to up my zinc a bit.

Based on my reading, their document is probably the best available protocol for treating this virus. They certainly seem to have covered all the bases.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Apr 15 2020 22:49 utc | 322

France plans to ease restrictions and move toward restarting the French economy by May 11th.

Coincidentally, May 11th is also the day that Jews celebrate Lag BaOmer the day when the plague ended.

“Lag BaOmer also commemorates another joyous event. The Talmud relates that in the weeks between the Jewish holidays of Passover and Shavuot, a plague raged among the disciples of the great sage Rabbi Akiva (teacher of Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai), “because they did not act respectfully towards each other.” These weeks are therefore observed as a period of mourning, with various joyous activities proscribed by law and custom. On Lag BaOmer the deaths ceased. Thus, Lag BaOmer also carries the theme of loving and respecting one’s fellow (ahavat Yisrael).”

“Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai, who lived in the second century of the Common Era, was the first to publicly teach the mystical dimension of the Torah known as the Kabbalah, and is the author of the classic text of Kabbalah, the Zohar. On the day of his passing, Rabbi Shimon instructed his disciples to mark the date as “the day of my joy.”

It remains to be seen if “President” Jared Corey Kushner will follow this Kabbalah tradition and reopen the economy on May 11th , or formally the 18th day of Iyar 33rd day of the Counting of the Omer, which begins the 2nd day of Pesach.

Posted by: Krollchem | Apr 15 2020 22:55 utc | 323

Tops @322:

the military hospitals are still largely empty ...

This isn't an indication of the danger of the virus.

The military hospitals in NYC were never suppose to get Covid-19 patients. They were there to take other patients so that NYC hospitals could treat Covid-19 patients.

... and there may be only minimal excess mortality by the end of the year.

This is essentially an argument for lifting the lockdowns swiftly and completely.

The virus spread has been controlled because of the lock-down. Lifting the lock-down must be done carefully or the virus could start spreading again.

up to 90% show no symptoms

That's too simplistic.

Everyone (100%) will have no symptoms for a short time after they are infected.

Almost all of those infected will be infectious before they experience symptoms (i.e. before they know they are infected). For some, symptoms will be so mild that they barely notice that they are ill.

In some number of patients, mostly those with underlying conditions, the disease will progress to a serious form known as "Covid-19". The percentage of patients that get Covid-19 depends on many factors but the quality of healthcare and air quality are important are some of the more important factors.

10-20% is probably the rule of thumb for the infected that develop Covid-19. And 5-10% of Covid-19 patients may die. But many more will develop lung scarring (pulmonary fibrosis). Lung scarring is a permanent condition that impairs lung function and generally causes an early death (most who are diagnosed die within 5 years).

We *want* to achieve 70% infected as soon as possible.

This is 'herd immunity'. Something that was rejected by doctors everywhere except Sweden.

For a virus as easy to spread as COV-SARS-2, we can't say that the virus would be stopped at 70%. It could go much higher before dying out. And when the spread starts to slow and restrictions are lifted, that is when it is most likely to get to "protected" populations like the elderly and cancer patients.

In USA many younger people have underlying conditions that make them susceptible to Covid-19. Many of these will survive but will get some degree of lung scarring.

So, no. We do *not* want to achieve 70% infected.


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Apr 15 2020 23:03 utc | 324

Posted by: bevin | Apr 15 2020 22:23 utc | 323

Astounding how much bullshit you need to invent so that you can pretend everyone you want to silence is a nazi.

You really are pathetic

Posted by: Realist | Apr 15 2020 23:08 utc | 325


Looks like the recommendation for chloroquine (as a secondary approach if the primary does not work) is much less than 10g.

1g per day for 2 days, followed by 0.5g a day for 5 days:

"If the basic regimen is not effective, chloroquine phosphate can be used on adults between 18-65 years old (weight ≥ 50 kg: 500 mg bid; weight ≤50 kg: 500 mg bid for first two days, 500 mg qd for following five days)"

There's also a bunch of contraindications.

Posted by: bill | Apr 15 2020 23:43 utc | 326

karlof1 @ 325

We can't engage the other disease; C-Stupid-19 that evolved from the corona crisis.

Poster Boy: Senator Graham Says Would Support Funding WHO, 'If Someone Like Bill Gates Were in Charge'

eMed. eVaccine passes in the accelerator..


I feel I am at some airport in a desert being given 15 mins drip announcements on the delayed flight -

addendum to my Lansing, Michigan Lockdown protest @ 321

Anyone Please!!! help me understand this tidbit from Harvard School of Public Health.

U.S. may need to extend social distancing for virus until 2022, study says

(Reuters) - The United States may need to endure social distancing measures adopted during the coronavirus outbreak until 2022, according to researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health.[.]

“Intermittent distancing may be required into 2022 unless critical care capacity is increased substantially or a treatment or vaccine becomes available”, the Harvard researchers said in findings published Tuesday in the journal Science.

(emphasis added)

Not in my dictionary. How does one achieve "intermittent distancing" ???????

Posted by: Likklemore | Apr 15 2020 23:46 utc | 327

Likklemore @321--

Yes, Costupid indeed.

The article presumably implies a resurgence requiring returning to what's being protested--the sort of thing China's being very careful and watchful about. The very big difference between China and the Outlaw US Empire being Chinese trust their government to do the right thing whereas TrumpCo has demonstrated its utter incompetence--criminality--to safeguard any aspect of the populace's wellbeing while allowing the Money Power to further consolidate and expand its grip.

What's most sad about that bunch in Lansing is they're protesting against the wrong entity instead of protesting against the Enemy Within.

Posted by: karlof1 | Apr 16 2020 0:04 utc | 328

So ...

We get this bogus study from Brazil ...

But STILL NO RESULTS from New York State's use of hydroxyChloroquine nearly a month after they said they had secured a large stockpile and would start using it on patients.


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Apr 16 2020 0:06 utc | 329

vk 114 (quote from linked item by Vlchek)

"As reported by Radio France Internationale: "According to its 2018 financial statement, the organization received a total of $2.74 billion in funding … The largest contributors are the US, with $281 million, the UK ($205 million), Germany ($154 million) and Japan ($86 million)."

If only this were true. I imagine that anyone who has been following the covid19-vaccine discussion by now knows that Bill Gates is a heavy hitter in the WHO. Actually, the Gates Foundation is the second largest contributor to WHO. The Gavi Alliance, created and controlled by Gates to impose universal vaccination and ID2020, is the fifth-largest contributor. And these are not chump change donors. All ahead of Japan. Next comes the National Philanthropic Trust, which specializes in "Donor-advised" funds. Whatever that is. You can look it up on Wikipedia. Something for rich people to channel donations in directions that are advantageous to the rich people. Next up, Rotary International, an international service organization whose stated purpose is "to bring together business and professional leaders in order to provide humanitarian service."

It's all about the private-public partnership idea. Call it "camel's nose very far inside tent." It is rational (not "conspiracy theory") to speculate that that means private entities, especially businesses and corporations and various unnamed rich donors tricked out as NGOs, have far too much say or investment in the WHO agenda.

Source of info: Search for World Economic Forum, "How is the World Health Organization Funded?" Scroll down to graph. I am unable to grasp the relevance of the colored bands on each bar of the graph.

As for Tedros, his Wiki entry notes, "As Minister of Health, Tedros was able to form a close relationship with prominent figures including former American president Bill Clinton and the Clinton Foundation and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation." i wonder whether they were any help in Tedros's landing the job (he is the first non-physician in this position). He has served on the GAVI board of directors. Personally I would feel a lot better if the person running the WHO were a physician who had spent years in the trenches treating patients from all walks of life and maybe running a large clinic or hospital or hospital network in a developing nation.

Trump may be "investigating" and withdrawing support from the WHO for a bunch of bad reasons. But surely barflies are not babes in the woods when it comes to those selflessly angelic entities, international NGOs. Surely there are some good reasons to delve more deeply into the functioning of the current WHO, since private entities started to get a foothold in it.

It would be nice if the WHO were completely funded only by actual governments and its agenda could be openly seen to be driven by science, public health experts, and maybe economists---not by corporate actors and business interests in NGO clothing.

Posted by: Really?? | Apr 16 2020 0:06 utc | 330


More on System dynamics and why politicians epidemiologists and virologists do not understand the problem with epidemics.

See also the New England Complex System Institute on stopping the coronavirus pandemic.

Unfortunately, few are listening which will lead to a civilizational crisis that could have been avoided. Interesting that China applied many of these techniques which is why they are rebooting their economy while the Western world is only just beginning to collapse.

Posted by: krollchem | Apr 16 2020 0:26 utc | 331

krollchem - 335
Yeah, Taleb was spot on since the very beginning in this case. Which is interesting, because he tends to like and agree with Trump on quite a number of issues and has or had hopes he'd do some good stuff, so the braindead Trumpian can't really dismiss his warnings as pro-China lies or leftist liberal slanders - the guy's quite libertarian at the global scale, yet sees the need for some common strong measures to fight the pandemic.

And that very first graph in that article is exactly what I've been saying all along: any strategy other than full eradication of the virus now by strong measures now is basically asking for a psychpathic criminal and murderous policy that will needlessly cause ten times (or even more) more deaths than is necessary to fight it off. Herd immunity by letting everyone get infected is purely mass-murder. You have to manage to isolate into small clusters all the infected people, and then after a few weeks of isolation and/or medical treatment the virus dies off in the clusters, and it eventually fully dies off, period; the alternative is not really giving a shit if 2% of your people die, when many of them had still several years of decent life ahead of them.

And more importantly to me, which is possibly also the main reason Taleb goes ballistic at times: assuming the current death rates aren't too far off and the virus doesn't mutate or turns out to bring lasting damages to most infected, even those with mild symptoms, this isn't the real deal yet. This is mostly a rehearsal for the time, in a few decades, when we'll face a real killer, a nasty bug that will kill off a third of mankind if left unchecked. When this one occurs, we can't fail, we can't allow our leaders to fail. They'll have to perform tremendously better than the complete shitshow they've played this time. And obviously "herd immunity" or putting the economy ahead of the people's well-being won't be acceptable strategies; in the face of a real mass-killer, the few psycho loonies who will profer such ideas will have to be put down for our own survival's sake.

And to be blunt, all the fucking morons around here - say, Andy, Really and the usual trollfarmers - claiming there's basically no mortality here or that this is a hoax are the same kind of loonies.

I just hope that when this is all over, we'll hold a grand Nuremberg-like tribunal where we will prosecute all the media people, political leaders and international organizations who fucked up or who downplayed the scope of the threat. This includes not just Fox News or libertarian assholes, this also obviously includes the likes of WHO, EU leaders, heads of CDC and similar offices, and the bulk of our governments - including some Chinese ones of course, since they messed up big time durng most of January, even though the bulk of the political leaders who deserve to hang from lampposts are the Western ones.

Posted by: Clueless Joe | Apr 16 2020 0:51 utc | 332

Phil @ 111

I have put the second German item that Phil linked (and summarized) through Google Translate. The conclusions are startling and seem very relevant to the suppositions going forward as to how SARS-Cov-2 actually interacts with a person's immune system.

Particularly vulnerable people
Since we have observed the outbreak of coronary disease in China and its further spread globally, we have noticed that this infectious disease particularly affects a special group of people: people with high blood pressure. It is postulated that this increased risk could have to do with the SARS-2 coronavirus nesting in the human cell via a receptor that also plays an important role in blood pressure regulation, the ACE receptor (we have reported about this) ). Since the first case reports, it has been clear that people with high blood pressure have a significantly increased risk of developing a more severe illness. Since the blood pressure regulation is not only affected in the case of isolated high blood pressure, but also in particular in the case of diabetes and other heart diseases, it is not surprising that these groups of people are also observed to have a higher risk of a more severe form of louse disease.

Pregnant women and immunocompromised are not at risk
It is also noticeable that an important group of people, who are often particularly at risk in the case of infectious diseases, does not appear in severe forms of Covid-19 diseases: These are patients with a weakened immune system, especially people who are treated with immunosuppressants. And interestingly enough, we also do not see any accumulations of difficult courses in pregnant women whose immune systems are dampened by a natural process to protect the child. If severe forms with Covid-19 occur in young people, these courses are characterized by a particularly active, excessive immune system (so-called cytokine storm) and do not occur in the case of immune deficiency.

Italian experience confirms our observation
Lorenzo D’Antiga from the transplant center in Bergamo, the epicenter of the Covid-19 disease in Italy, now confirms the previous observations in the Journal Liver Transplantation. Immunocompromised people, cancer patients, transplant recipients, but also people with other causes of an immunodeficiency who are otherwise known to be particularly at risk for certain infectious diseases, are not particularly at risk with the Covid-19 infection. Over 200 organ transplant patients were not at particular risk. No difficult course was found in children with immune deficiency states either. This great experience coincides with the observations from China

And pregnant women?
The Italian clinic has now not examined the evidence for pregnant women. If we now write in the title that this also applies to pregnant women, it is only in the sense that so far no other studies have found any evidence that pregnancy shows a significantly increased risk of a serious illness with Covid-19. Before you should unsure pregnant women, you should say what you know after everything you know: There is no evidence that a pregnant woman is particularly at risk. And the fact that the same thing is now very clear for immunosuppressed people also supports the statement in favor of the pregnant woman.

Evidence with consistency -
federal law also has to be adapted
This evidence is a great relief for many affected people. We also have to be critical of ourselves. We are often a bit rash in making medical decisions. The reflex infection: immunosuppressed at risk - is understandable because it applies very often. But in this case it is important that we quickly tell the many people with weakened immune systems that they are not particularly at risk from this condition.

Yes, and the federal government must also urgently correct its regulations: In article 5 of its ordinance 2 on measures to combat the coronavirus (Covid-19), the federal council has identified the groups of people who are particularly at risk from the new coronavirus: diseases and therapies that weaken the immune system, cancer. According to what we now know, this determination is wrong. It has to be corrected, because the regulation has far-reaching consequences for the people concerned, especially in their working environment.

We ask the authorities to at least make this correction based on solid evidence immediately and to inform the population accordingly.

Prof. Dr. med. Pietro Vernazza

Prof. Pietro Vernazza is chief physician of infectiology and has worked at the St. Gallen Cantonal Hospital since 1985. Before working at the Cantonal Hospital, he completed the following training: studies in human medicine, University of Zurich 1976-1982 / clinical training in internal medicine 1983-1988, Sursee and St. Gallen, 7 / 91-9 / 93 UNC, Chapel Hill, NC, USA

Posted by: Really?? | Apr 16 2020 0:52 utc | 333

US Civil Defense film (YT) explains CSW and shows how a biological attack ought to be dealt with, and why America can handle it with smooth efficiency.

"What You Should Know About Biological Warfare | 1950s Educational Film"

I feel so much better!

Posted by: Walter | Apr 16 2020 1:07 utc | 334

The suspicion is therefore that the RKI has been leaned on to obscure the true, much lower mortality of Covid.

Posted by: Leser | Apr 15 2020 19:25 utc | 298
Dr. Hendrick Streeck certainly has raised questions as to why the RKI didn't take the obvious steps to gain as much data on and understanding of this disease as possible, to inform the public and inform public policy. He did this very nicely, because he seems to be a very nice guy. And he has himself stepped into the data breach and conducted his own study at the request of the municipality of [can't recall name] to get some basic reliable figures and information of rates of infections in the general population and actual sites of viruses cells or what ever they are on surfaces of various sorts in the homes of the infected. Streeck concluded that the idea that the virus lives for hours or days on surfaces such as plastic or door knobs and you could pick it up by touching the surface was straight out wrong. They found no viable viruses on thesse surfaces in the homes of test-positive people.

Posted by: Really?? | Apr 16 2020 1:09 utc | 335

When the history books are written about coronavirus, people will understand that a single concept developed by the Chinese explains the difference between it being fully under control in China and still running rampant in the West and that is the Fangcang Shelter Hospitals. The Lancet has already started publishing that history:

Fangcang shelter hospitals are a novel public health concept. They were implemented for the first time in China in February, 2020, to tackle the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak. The Fangcang shelter hospitals in China were large-scale, temporary hospitals, rapidly built by converting existing public venues, such as stadiums and exhibition centres, into health-care facilities. They served to isolate patients with mild to moderate COVID-19 from their families and communities, while providing medical care, disease monitoring, food, shelter, and social activities.

Meanwhile it looks like someone in the U.S. has finally woken up to why Fangcang Shelter Hospitals are so important - two months late.
Sandy Brown’s husband knew he was infected. The 59-year-old church elder had the trademark dry cough and fever of covid-19, but when she drove him gasping for air to the emergency room, the doctor’s advice was to go home and stay home.

So he did.

Soon, their 20-year-old son was sick, and within 12 days, both had died.

The standard prescription from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for the mildly ill to self-isolate at home is something doctors and nurses in coronavirus hot spots repeat hundreds of times each day. But there’s a devastating cost to the public policy decision: multiple families with multiple deaths.

The only problem as far as I'm concerned is that the fucking morons in that prime example of pondlife the Conservative Government in Britain are still fast asleep on this.

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Apr 16 2020 1:10 utc | 336

People who live for decades in highly polluted air for many decades have compromised lungs, and that directly has a major effect on the course of the corona virus.

Posted by: BM | Apr 15 2020 14:48 utc | 216

The damage to lungs from pollution is comparable to damage from second-hand smoke.
Here is a graphic demonstration of the difference between healthy lungs and a smoker's lungs. Instead of "smoker" you can read "in habitant of a heavily polluted city."

See Youtube video "How Smoking Impacts Your Lung Health,"

You can see from the raggedy, deflated lungs blackened by tars (pollution) with crushed and mutilated cells, a virus, bacterium, or any enemy has plenty of weak access points to attack.

If you smoke, please do stop. if you live in a polluted area, consider moving if you can afford it.

Posted by: Really?? | Apr 16 2020 1:19 utc | 337

Ghost Ship @ 340

Meanwhile, the New York Times makes it clear that the morons running New York still haven't worked it out. They are developing field hospital to take non-coronavirus patients rather than Fangcang Shelter Hospitals.

New York, like other American cities, is now trying to rapidly build up capacity to handle large numbers of patients. A temporary field hospital is scheduled to open on Monday in the Jacob Javits Convention Center in Manhattan, with a capacity of nearly 3,000 beds; it is being set up to treat non-Covid-19 patients so as to allow mainstream facilities to focus on patients infected with the new coronavirus.

And neither have the opinion writers for the New York Times as they're suggesting using hotels as isolation hospitals which means that more medical and care staff are required.
There is another solution, though: Using the tens of thousands of hotel rooms in the city, many of which currently are empty, to house people who have tested positive for the coronavirus or — given the dearth of available tests — who display mild Covid-19-like symptoms. Let’s turn hotels into temporary quarantine quarters.

Patients would be put up for free for 14 days, the standard recommended period of self-isolation. Food could be delivered. Nurses could be stationed at the hotels to check on the people who are quarantined, in particular to ensure that anyone who develops more severe symptoms can be rapidly taken to a hospital. Any member of one’s household who subsequently tested positive could move in.

This Chinese development also explains why the claims from Washington and London that the Chinese have lied about the number of cases and deaths are complete bullshit. It's simply that the Chinese government is better at protecting its people than either Washington or London.

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Apr 16 2020 1:31 utc | 338

@ ghost ship.. thanks for the links in your past 2 posts.. scary shit... i hope they work it out in a timely manner and learn from the mistakes as noted in both articles..

Posted by: james | Apr 16 2020 1:58 utc | 339


Thank you for making a stand for the knowledge of the
ages. Epidemics cannot be managed without
containment on various levels.

If you get a chance, look back at Idlib. Finally, we see
Western propped up “rebels”, HTS and their financing
mechanism, White Helmets, in trouble.

They have made a bet that militant groups they control
was going to respond to their call to create barriers
on M-4 highway that splits Idlib, to prevent “Russian patrols”.
Since these are Turkish-Russian patrols. Turkey took an action
against the tents and barricades, dispersing them using
military police. They were helped by militant groups in
Idlib that crossed over to Turkey. This is the first h
split among otherwise solid HTS control. HTS retaliated by arresting leaders
of those groups — then fearing Turkey, released them.

UK and US may want to rethink their outfit position.
The longer Turkey stays, more groups would go under its command.

Which will end Idlib isolation, as soon as the Turkey managed groups
sign up to reconciliation agreement — and start receiving
aid directly not through HTS.

Posted by: Bianca | Apr 16 2020 2:03 utc | 340

@ 335 krollchem.. thanks for the links as well! that one titled The Only Man Who Has A Clue is really worthwhile reading and also scary from a different angle.. we are not listening to those we need to be listening to.. crushing the curve is the way to go..

Posted by: james | Apr 16 2020 2:07 utc | 341

then the WHO may finally be able to execute its mandate as originally conceived.

. . .
Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Apr 15 2020 18:51 utc | 288


That is highly unlikely to be possible, since the WHO is no longer funded as it was originally.
See my earlier post on actual funders of the WHO and actual background of Tedros.

Posted by: Really?? | Apr 16 2020 2:17 utc | 342

there's the choice between safety and truth. To follow the path of safety will never lead to truth. To follow the path of truth will never be save. The path of truth is determined by trust. To build trust is twofold: either by a belief system which you can pray to, or by knowledge or true science.

Posted by: Phil | Apr 16 2020 2:17 utc | 343

@Johan Meyer #191

Thank you for your advice on proper links posting protocol.

In regards to my posting #185, I am not disputing the data from the links I referenced (although I understand that accurate figures are nearly impossible to obtain for the reasons you have identified). I was attempting to point out that the graphs displayed in this article are both misleading and inaccurate.

In the case of the weekly deaths in England and Wales graph, the red line vertical climb above the historical mortality range contradicts the actual data (10,645 deaths from the Office of National Statistics) which is within the historical range.: Deaths registered weekly in England and Wales, provisional: week ending 20 March 2020

In regards to the graph figures for NYC, the second graph in this article shows a misleading and inaccurate spike of 9,780 total deaths in NYC for the month ending April 4th. These figures actually include a range from the last week of February until the 14th of April or 7 weeks. Provisional Death Counts for Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19)

Posted by: Ben C | Apr 16 2020 2:35 utc | 344

Steve N 319

"It is true that a person can be infected and not even know it. However, to be honest, I have never heard of such a flu virus before. "


I don't know how you can say that if you have been following the development of this story. It has been stated over and over again that many people have had the virus and had no symptoms, or perhaps they had such light symptoms, that they didn't know they were technically "ill." Furthermore, even if people do end up getting ill, for about two days beforehand they will be contagious without knowing that they are about to show symptoms. Individuals in either group can, obviously, spread the virus. It could be you. It could be your neighbor, who doesn't look ill. It could be the cashier in the supermarket. Any one of you could be about to show symptoms in two days. The efficacy of the strategy depends on everyone wearing a mask. That multiplies the effectiveness. Thus, even if your mask is just 30% effective and the other fellow's is the same, together that makes 60% effectiveness.

I myself have had a very slight cough. Is it covid-19? I don't know. I'm not sure of the definition of a "dry cough." I don't think it is anything, I don't feel ill, but I really don't know. So I wear a mask.
So, wear your mask, for heaven's sake.
Why would you NOT wear it, when you are near other people?

Sheesh. What is the problem here? Is this a guy thing?

It is logically impossible to prove a negative. This seems to be what a lot of people here don't get. You will never know for sure whether wearing your mask, or washing your hands, prevented either you or some one else from getting infected. Just do it.

Posted by: Really?? | Apr 16 2020 2:37 utc | 345

China classes those without symptoms as suspected cases. PCR tests are not 100% accurate. Bilateral opacity in the lungs can begin before any outward symptoms. I believe all people who test positive in China also undergo a CT scan. People who test negative on a PCR test but have symptoms such as cough runny nose ect also have CT scan of the lungs. Some that show up negative with PCR do have Covid-19 and diagnosed using other criteria. PCR test is only one of a number of Criteria.
Those that have tested positive to a PCR but have no other evidence of the disease are suspected cases and they go into quarantine until they develop symptoms and become a confirmed case or show negative on two consecutive PCR tests.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Apr 16 2020 3:03 utc | 346

Clueless Joe@336

good points, you have a good read on Taleb and system thinking.

Given that most people in the US are living a fragile existence at the edge of collapse the politicians will try to open up the economy soon (May 11th?). This will lead to many additional nodes of infections ultimately resulting in the 1-2% death rate you mention.

Furthermore over 5% of the "survivors" will have one or more damaged organs such as lung fibrosis leading to premature death, especially if reinfected with COVID-19 or even another Coronavirus as graphically illustrated in this pathology video.

I gave up posting nutritional and biochemical advice at MoA that would reduce the fragility of human cellular biochemical systems toward viral and bacterial attacks. I look around and see a massive increase in metabolic syndrome due to the standard american diet (SAD) which will increase the death rate upon subsequent covid-19 outbreaks. It will only get worse as the confined tend to turn into junk food couch potatoes.

We will have to deal with the trolls for a couple more doubling times of the death rate before their "its only the flu" excuses are hollow.

I learned years ago that I cannot fix stupid.

Posted by: krollchem | Apr 16 2020 3:04 utc | 347

Clueless Joe @ 336
"And to be blunt, all the fucking morons around here - say, Andy, Really and the usual trollfarmers - claiming there's basically no mortality here or that this is a hoax are the same kind of loonies."

By "Really" I assume you mean me.
I never said any such thing.
You are lying.
How dare you, Mr. Clueless, put words in my mouth and then call me loony.
Please indicate via quotes of my comments where I said mortality figures are a hoax.
First of all, I am not a scientist and do not present as a scientist, unlike, say, c1ue. I have cited various practitioners who have questioned how data are (or are not) gathered and how numbers are reported. I discussed their discussions of a need for a reliable denominator.
Are you so limited mentally that you can't distinguish between discussing some reporting and resulting math issues, and calling the mortality a "hoax."
I don't think you are that mentally limited. I think there is a greater mathematical likelihood that you are in fact a troll.
It's one or the other. Incredibly stupid, or a troll.

Posted by: Really?? | Apr 16 2020 3:08 utc | 348

krollchem, james

Like Taleb and Ilargi, I've been decrying the "flatten the curve" goal (since March 26):

‘Flatten the Curve’: A Prescription for Failure

But I focus on 'virus suppression' vs. 'virus mitigation' instead of just mask usage.

A 'suppression' strategy should be put into place as soon as the right tools and medicines are found to be effective. China and South Korea have led the way with quick testing and early treatment with chloroquine therapy.

More than 2-weeks ago, Trump announced that 15-minute test from Abbott Labs would soon be rolled out. AFAIK, it still hasn't.

China developed a 15-minute test in early February. By mid-March, Japan was also using Chinese test kits or tests based on the Chinese approach.

Strangely, we still have no news about the use of hydroxyChloroquine in New York State. That was supposed to have started about a month ago (treatment takes 6 days).

<> <> <> <> <> <>

I've also written about how the Empire has gotten good at gaming CRISIS! The goals of the gaming of the current CRISIS! And Government-assisted profiteering (Chloroquine vs. Remdesivir).


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Apr 16 2020 3:10 utc | 349

As this is a debunking thread this Peoples Daily article is worth a read.
BLOCKQUOTE>Editor's note: On Tuesday evening, Zhong Nanshan, a leading respiratory disease expert, was invited to participate in an online live broadcast hosted by Tencent to share his latest views on COVID-19.

Will the patient have sequelae, or lasting conditions, after recovering from COVID-19?

Those healed from COVID-19 showed some decrease in lung function in general, especially in diffusion function, which means the efficiency of air exchange between alveolar capillaries would be affected. But it is believed that it will gradually recover over time. So far, the interval has been relatively short, so the patient has had to be reviewed.

How effective is traditional Chinese medicine in fighting against the epidemic?

Chinese medicine has some certain effects on the prevention and control of COVID-19.

For example, Lianhua Qingwen medicine might be a little weaker against novel coronavirus pneumonia, but it has a good inhibitory effect on damage to tissue cell inflammation caused by the epidemic. And it's proved effective to reduce fever, cough, and speed up recovery.

Consisting of five herbal extracts, Xuebijing, an injection developed and marketed during the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) epidemic in 2003, can relieve symptoms and reduce the rate of fatalities.

We can't judge if the Chinese medicine or western medicine treatment is effective just based on impressions, but prove it according to medical methods.

Are there any effective drugs to treat COVID-19?

The first large-scale clinical efficacy study of remdesivir, published in the New England Journal of Medicine not long ago, found that the drug was effective in severe cases with a response of 68 percent, so we can say it's rather effective.

China has also made great attempts, and found that the effect of Kaletra (a combination of lopinavir and ritonavir) is not that obvious, but chloroquine phosphate is proved effective.

Will patients who are discharged from the hospital after initial recovery but test positive again infect others?

They are less likely to cause infection.

Among the patients who have been clinically cured, a small number of them have tested positive for a second time. We need to do some tests on them, like the detection of antibodies in the serum, which is commonly known as IgG. But even if the nucleic acid test is positive, the patients themselves would not be infected. It's like when you have the flu, you will not get the flu for a long time because you have antibodies.

Will COVID-19 become a new type of flu?

It is too early to predict whether COVID-19 will become a new type of flu or not.

The coronavirus can live in and spread between humans, and it's more transmissible than SARS, MERS and even the flu. We can't control how viruses evolve, so as time passes, whether it will turn into a common disease like the flu is not totally out of question. But as the fatality rate of COVID-19 is still quite high now, it can't be called a flu.

Will there be another round of outbreaks of COVID-19 in China?

If we conduct active prevention and control, it's unlikely to appear another round of COVID-19 outbreaks.

After more than three months of efforts, new cases and transmission in China have been minimized. But as imported cases are inevitable, indigenous ones are likely to rebound.

As long as there is communication between outside and inside China, there is a chance that imported cases infect people inside China. This risk is always present and cannot be avoided.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Apr 16 2020 3:24 utc | 350

Regarding Snowden, I applaud his revealing the scope of US surveillance, but let's not elevate him to some kind of special authority or expert on anything. He knows no more about global affairs than some other guy with internet access. In a recent interview, he said that China lied about its COVID numbers. Just a bald claim, based on no argument whatsoever. He no longer works for the NSA but he's still in that mental space. Coupled with his typical American biases, he strikes me as quite naive.

Posted by: occcupatio | Apr 16 2020 3:41 utc | 351


Yes, that is why I also linked to Taleb's co-authors at the following site. They have a couple of dozen articles on suppression methods. I hope this helps.

Posted by: Krollchem | Apr 16 2020 3:55 utc | 352

Posted by: occcupatio | Apr 16 2020 3:41 utc | 355

Snowden, IIRC, has libertarian tendencies, so while he's a Hero for ratting out the spooks, no doubt, politically he has obvious problems as a thinker, pundit or prognosticator.

Assange is a much more solid thinker/philosopher when it comes to politics, he has had some interesting things to say.

Posted by: Bemildred | Apr 16 2020 3:56 utc | 353

c1ue | Apr 15 2020 14:16 utc | 204

It was long-term statistical analysis, for SIX YEARS. Difficult to track down origins of the 40,000 number. Good analysis and the number was true in the early 1980s, and would now be 60,000+ over six years.

Posted by: fairleft | Apr 16 2020 3:58 utc | 354

Least at 296:

Yes, fantastic website. I think what we see now is what we saw with SARS-2 and other recent epidemics: a panicked response based on lack of knowledge, 'better safe than sorry', and early data that later turns out to be vastly exaggerated. Hopefully reality will break through soon and we'll soon, but carefully (see Denmark), get back to normal plus masks and reasonable social distancing, and great care directed toward the vulnerable.

Reason for pessimism about reality breaking through in the U.S.: a long-term lockdown, damn the facts, seems to have become the main anti-Trump election strategy of the Democrats and the mainstream media (except Fox).

Posted by: fairleft | Apr 16 2020 4:11 utc | 355

Sorry, leser not least.

Posted by: fairleft | Apr 16 2020 4:12 utc | 356

@ Bemildred 357
Your labeling of Snowden as libertarian nicely summarizes his orientation.

I find irksome the prevalence of libertarian angst on alt-media lately in response to the COVID crisis. Wanting less govt, as if a global pandemic can be solved without big government, not to mention cooperation among governments around the world. I've never understood such fantasies.

Posted by: occupatio | Apr 16 2020 4:14 utc | 357

The paper shows causation between TB vaccine and COVID-19 impact.
Posted by: Joe | Apr 15 2020 17:57 utc | 269

More importantly, TB vaccination is confounded with subsequent TB infection. It is the history of TB infection that makes the difference, not the vaccination. TB infections cause extensive damage to the lungs. The lung damage takes place over the course of many years and is cumulative. It is already thoroughly established that compromised lung condition substantially worsens the course of Covid-19 infection.

Therefore the paper most certainly does not prove causation between TB vaccine and Covid-19 impact, but highly probable causation between historical TB infection and Covid-19 impact. Therefore, if you get BCG now, it will give absolutely zero protection against Covid-19.

Related: it would be interesting to research historical records for TB incidence in Lombardy 30, 40, 50, 60 years ago - many of those affected would now be in their 80's, some with multiple other comorbidities, and would thus be highly susceptible to covid-19. I'd be willing to bet that lungs compromised by decades of TB damage would precipitate heart disease, which at 59% is by far the biggest deadly comorbidity with Covid-19.

Posted by: BM | Apr 16 2020 4:58 utc | 358

Ha ha ha! See my critique of that lying fake news Titter chart here (comment 163).

Compare that with this graph here published by the UK's Office for National Statistics (ONS).

Furthermore, be sure to take note that these are the cumulative figures for the whole year from 28th December 2019 until 3rd April 2020, not the deaths registered in the 14th week alone. See the graph. Now compare with that fake news Titter chart!

Posted by: BM | Apr 16 2020 6:07 utc | 359

To my amazement lately I find myself agreeing with b more often! I must say that everything he wrote is on point.

Now regarding the origins of the virus, more and more I'm thinking that the U.S. government, of which Ziofascist Trump is now the head of, making the usual mistakes, is spoiling for a big fight with China, or at least, as I wrote yesterday, is trying to paint China as global public enemy number 1, and if intelligence operators could plant incriminating evidence; nothing would hold them back. But enough with the intrigue.

Here's what I think. This virus is beyond its origin, has a life of its own and is on a mission. This virus has a karmic factor.

Already two pastors that I've read about (maybe there are others I don't know about; no doubt🙄) died from Covid-19. One called it mass hysteria and died end of March after Covid drowned both his lungs. The other died 2 days ago after he dared to preach to his parish in March that God is larger than the dreaded Covid virus and he wasn't afraid to die.

Anyone who isn't sobered by this virus, will be.

This virus has mileage to cover, and if you think you got lucky in Round 1; it'll try to get you the next time around and maybe the time after that and it's going to rain on the parade, and wreak havoc on livelihoods and the economy. Debt is not a safety net; it's immediate gratification for a pound of flesh. The government and bank won't coddle you forever.

Haven't you noticed? The party's over. There's a new normal emerging and it's time to get serious. If you do not take this virus and this karma seriously; it will come after you somehow.

There is non-sanitized tragedy unfolding in our face every day for a f**cking reason and no Dancing with the Stars to make it all feel better. The message is clear: Quit resisting and denying reality, don't run for the material fix and the distraction, get sober, get compassion, teach your children compassion, grow up and make this world more humane, FCS!

(Oh and I believe everyone between 20 and 35 should be working and not getting hand-outs, and masks obligatory, gloves where necessary and should shower immediately when they get home and isolate if there are older vulnerable people around within their household or extended family if they don't live on their own. There is plenty of work to be done in hospitals, nursing homes, (sanitizing & cleaning), food distribution, municipal services and child care for children of people working. I'm sure I'm leaving out work that is essential to quasi-essential that they can do.)

Posted by: Circe | Apr 16 2020 6:10 utc | 360


*) 1984, goldstein

Posted by: E | Apr 16 2020 6:13 utc | 361

The UK Office for National Statistics (ONS) have now corrected some gross errors in their previously published data, and also greatly expanded their clarification and analysis - almost certainly in response to a flood of enquiries and complaints about their misdirection, not to mention all the people deceived by that lying fake news Titter chart.

New analysis expected here today (not yet published at the time of this post).

Posted by: BM | Apr 16 2020 6:33 utc | 362

The results of the study of the first 41 Covid-19 patients.

The chart at the link below shows ages and also date of onset of symptoms. Earliest onset of symptom Dec 1st. This patient had no contact with the market. Next 3 cases had onset of symptoms Dec 10th. Two of these had no contact with the market.
Approximately one third of the 25-49 year age group required intensive care.
Less than half had co-morbidities.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Apr 16 2020 6:35 utc | 363

US Civil Defense film (YT) explains CSW and shows how a biological attack ought to be dealt with, and why America can handle it with smooth efficiency.
"What You Should Know About Biological Warfare | 1950s Educational Film"
I feel so much better!
Posted by: Walter | Apr 16 2020 1:07 utc | 338

Yeah, I am sure. I remember reading someone commenting on his experiences of nuclear bomb drills as a schoolchild in the 1950's - the schoolchildren were taught to hide under their desks! Shows that the US knows best how to protect their children from nuclear bombs or biological warfare.

Posted by: BM | Apr 16 2020 7:09 utc | 364

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Apr 16 2020 1:31 utc | 342 Newspaper Quote: "There is another solution, though: Using the tens of thousands of hotel rooms in the city, many of which currently are empty, to house people who have tested positive for the coronavirus or — given the dearth of available tests — who display mild Covid-19-like symptoms. Let’s turn hotels into temporary quarantine quarters."

San Francisco has now *finally* passed an ordinance requiring the city to acquire 8,500 hotel rooms to house people in three categories:

7,000 rooms for shielding the city's homeless residents from the coronavirus, the city would provide 500 rooms for discharged hospital patients and 750 for frontline workers.... The city has maintained it will only provide hotel rooms for homeless people in the shelter system and for single-room-occupancy hotel residents who either have tested positive for COVID-19 or may have been exposed; homeless people who are over 60 or have underlying health conditions, regardless if they're living in shelters or on the streets; and first responders who need to quarantine.

So a month or more *late*, they requisition enough hotel rooms to house...less than *half* of the homeless...*and* they'll have to also support whoever gets sick in the SROs *and* first-responders who get sick *and* those discharged from hospital who need to be isolated until they're cleared to return home.

This will help...slightly... But it's half the 14,000 rooms they wanted to get - which means the rest of the hotel chains told them to go pound sand...

And as for SRO people who "may have been exposed" - get one person sick in an SRO and odds are ninety percent of the residents have been "exposed" to some's next to impossible to *not* be exposed in an SRO (think worst motel you've ever stayed in while traveling...)

I still point out that 17,000 homeless and 19,000 SRO occupants are a time-bomb waiting to explode in this city should any significant number of these people get the virus. Even if only ten percent get it, that's 3,600 new cases and probably 360 new deaths. And I think ten percent is the minimum, given that virtually all of these people are immune-compromised due to being elderly or poor health due to drugs and alcohol abuse (or black since from my observation at least 50-75% of black people are neither following distance guidelines or wearing masks.) And how many of them are doing adequate hand washing or have enough money to buy masks (I just bought another 5 from LA Police Gear - at $7 *each*)?

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Apr 16 2020 7:13 utc | 365

Posted by: Clueless Joe | Apr 16 2020 0:51 utc | 336 When this one occurs, we can't fail, we can't allow our leaders to fail. They'll have to perform tremendously better than the complete shitshow they've played this time.

Good luck with that. Better hope that we have full-on Transhumans running things by then - or humanity is toast.

Actually, come to think of it, forget that...I view that as a positive outcome... I just hope it isn't this time, since I'm not ready yet...

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Apr 16 2020 7:38 utc | 366

How close we got to *real* societal problems...

Panic Hoarding Put Initial Pressure on Food and Drug Supply Chains
A daily Covid-19 update from Andy Slavitt, former head of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services

There’s normally about 2 weeks of groceries supplies somewhere in the supply chain. We got down to 1–2 days. And obviously that’s an average, so many were out. But now stocks are building back up. We have close to a week in the supply chain now. People are either less panicked or have less money.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Apr 16 2020 7:49 utc | 367

Phil about trust and safety
Northern European countries have a relax lockdown that actually allows people to visit each other, move to another place of the country using trains and cars. That is not only based on 'liberal thinking', I believe, but simply on logic because in the end, it is each one's reponsibility and trust into other people that help us decide if we want to stay closer to this or that person.
The same effort of trust is asked from the French when they go to buy food from a bakery or a supermarket: infected people could well have had infected hands when preparing. But they are not allowed to exercise this logic, and they are not allowed to travel anywhere even inside their city or country, or even, "to take their aged parents isolated in their houses/appartments to their own homes" as I read yesterday.

In appearance, the Eu pretends that only the external borders are closed and that Eu citizens are allowed to travel throughout the continent, except for some countries, including France, that has closed their borders and where to enter you need to show a downloaded paper saying it is either for work, an emergency etc. In practice, it also forbids people to go out to countries where the lockdown has different rules, even if they have family there.

It will be hard for the EU to claim it has helped to preserve liberties...

Posted by: Mina | Apr 16 2020 8:24 utc | 368

France plans to ease restrictions and move toward restarting the French economy by May 11th.

Posted by: Krollchem | Apr 15 2020 22:55 utc | 327

It was more a general aspiration, rather undetailed, apart from opening schools, and that's provoked a lot of protests.

Posted by: Laguerre | Apr 16 2020 8:31 utc | 369

It will be hard for the EU to claim it has helped to preserve liberties...

Posted by: Mina | Apr 16 2020 8:24 utc | 372

You are quite obsessed. There's hardly a cigarette paper's thickness difference between EU and non-EU countries. Only in France, you have to fill out a pointless paper that nobody looks at. Only in Britain, you get abused by the police for taking your children into the front garden (perfectly legal), and a police chief announced they were going to check out people's supermarket trolleys, to verify that there hadn't been purchases of non-essential items (food yes, kids' clothes no). You're not allowed in Britain to help out your aged parents either, in person (unless you're a cabinet minister, and then anything is allowed).

Posted by: Laguerre | Apr 16 2020 8:46 utc | 370

John Pilger on Twitter:

"Isolation is a proven silent killer. The UK govt is silent about the 'expert' estimate of 150,000 deaths as a result of the lockdown, not the virus. This figure may prove as unreliable as the estimates 'modelled' by Imperial College. But isn't it time to break the silence?"


Posted by: fairleft | Apr 16 2020 9:11 utc | 371

Mina @ 372

It will be hard for the EU to claim it has helped to preserve liberties...

Actually it's preserving probably the greatest liberty of all, the right to life itself, which Americans are genetically capable of understanding, and not allowing selfish fuckwits to murder one with their crass stupidity like those moronic protesters in Lansing, Michigan on Wednesday demanding that the governor lift the feeble lock-down restrictions she's imposed so that they can go out and buy lawn fertilizer or get their hair roots coloured, which they could do anyway if the weren't brainless Republicans.
The problem for neo-libs in Europe is that China is now far better than them at preserving the right to life.

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Apr 16 2020 9:21 utc | 372

В России СОЗДАНО МОЩНЕЙШЕЕ ЛЕКАРСТВО ОТ COVID-19 которое не нуждается в тестировании но из за руководства не могу проверить эту гипотезу

Posted by: Rishat | Apr 16 2020 11:12 utc | 373

You apparently both have no idea of the difference in the actual measures in northern Europe + Germany/Austria and the Spain/Italy/France ones. The latter consider that their people are too anarchist to cope with simple warnings.
In northern europe parks, forests and beaches are open, you just have too keep the distance. Moreover, most of the shops are open and no one actually control if the employees respect the distance between themselves (by the way, the employees are apparently not afraid and probably without co-morbidity: in most supermarkets I ve been too no one among the employees was wearing a mask, and the plastic glass is usually much too small in comparison to the area where droplets could actually cicrculate).
The controled suicide of southern Europe will lead to its complete take over by the north.
In the UK, I hear everyday that the opposition is asking this and that from the governement, while in France Macron is ruling entirely alone, and no one can manage to speak up. The news people get all day are so frightening that they all want the lockdown to continue as long as there is no vaccin!
Here is Macron in Marseille, having nothing more to say that if he was greeting people during his electoral campaign, and watch his smile!!

Posted by: Mina | Apr 16 2020 11:21 utc | 374

Legally, only the police is allowed to circulate freely on the streets in France. Others must be within a 1 km radius from home or go to work and have an attestation proving it.
Sounds almost like a curfew but the word is not too popular.

Posted by: Mina | Apr 16 2020 11:34 utc | 375

BM | Apr 16 2020 7:09 utc | 368 (US civil defense CBW film YT)

Superficially of course it seems idiotic and false. But the "US Civil Defense" program served several purposes...primarily it terrorized the population with air-raid sirens and films and drill...creating "consent" for the continuation of the war economy after W2 and the birth of the "mic"...the bomb tests were physics experiments, yes, but also they designed and tested hypothetical attack scenarios to see if indeed civil defense was possible...they evidently were actually trying to learn how a target population in USSR would cope, if at all. Thus The "enemy's abilities, "Their civil defense strategies" was being explored under the rubric and budget of US civil defense.

Thus the film is designed to propagandize and create obedience. It worked, too, generally.

Posted by: Walter | Apr 16 2020 11:55 utc | 376

The simplist reasonably decent mask can be made by putting a tissue handkerchief between the folds of a bandana, producing a 3 layer mask. More than 3 should be used in rotation and can be washed at high temperature.

I am a long term reader but decline to comment much unless I can make a useful contribution, having received approbrium for an early post.

An engineer is a 'man' who can do for a shilling what any fool can do for a pound.

Posted by: Old Engineer | Apr 16 2020 12:38 utc | 377

The UK's Office for National Statistics (ONS) has just published its Analysis of deaths involving COVID-19.

Even though it reports 3,912 deaths involving the coronavirus (COVID-19) that occurred in March 2020 in England and Wales, it also states that:
The overall mortality rate in March 2020 was lower than the five-year average

This appears to be the opposite of what it reported only two days ago that the number of deaths in one week was 6,082 more than the five-year average

This huge discrepancy makes it hard to believe both those reports at the same time. This is because the deaths registered in Week 14 (ending 3 April 2020) should nearly all appear in the number that occurred in March - since the ONS says there is a median delay of four days before a death is registered. This is confirmed by the fact that the two reports give closely matching numbers for deaths to date involving the coronavirus: 4,120 registered up to Week 14 and 3,912 occurred in March. So the differing methodologies of the two reports only explains a tiny part of the discrepancy between them.

Six thousand extra deaths were reported two days ago as if they were mostly caused by the coronavirus (although the ONS did not explain how in the same week only about half that number involved the coronavirus, but let's forget about that). But as reported today, there appear to be no extra overall deaths, only a lower mortality rate in March 2020.

The two reports cannot both be right, unless the ONS is omitting some relevant information.

Posted by: Brendan | Apr 16 2020 12:42 utc | 378

They are not including either deaths in 'Care' homes or deaths at home. Just deaths in hospitals.

Posted by: bevin | Apr 16 2020 12:54 utc | 379

@bevin, the ONS said in both reports: "Our figures also include any deaths that occur outside hospital.", and also that their figures - for deaths registered as well as for death occurrence - were for "Any place of death, including nursing homes".

Posted by: Brendan | Apr 16 2020 13:12 utc | 380

b has either made a complete 180 when it comes to honest discourse or b is no longer running this site.

The summary banning and removal of posts by anyone challenging the narrative is reminiscent of tales of book burning from what we have been led to believe was a bygone time.

Which is it, "b"?

Posted by: Fallen Scales | Apr 16 2020 13:15 utc | 381

There is a concerted effort in the media to portray the situation as the public is impatient with "lockdown" (hyperbole) and with mandated safety measures - using strawman arguments. In my experience, that is not the case though it is tedious. I see most people are appreciating the efforts of the leaders where they make sense (and they generally do). But there are those who try to create a sense of frustration and unrest.

It is neo-liberalism in action - get the lazy unwashed back to the coal mines. I believe the little people are appropriately concerned and prepared to do their part to mitigate and improve the situation.

They will turn-up the discomfort a bit by shutting-off food supply and then water and so on. I suppose it is unwinnable, except really the economy is toast anyway. So we may get the last "laugh" yet.

I guess now the Bojo has been vacinated, he will be out shaking hands and kissing babies again.

Posted by: jared | Apr 16 2020 13:30 utc | 382

Research saying nCOV/COVID-19 is naturally occurring because it does something which existing science had no idea existed: source

Existing computer models predicted that the new coronavirus would not bind to ACE2 as well as the SARS virus. However, to their surprise, the researchers found that the spike protein of the new coronavirus actually bound far better than computer predictions, likely because of natural selection on ACE2 that enabled the virus to take advantage of a previously unidentified alternate binding site.
The hard core conspiracy theorists are just going to say that "weapons science is more advanced than public science", but whaddya gonna do?

Point out that computer predictions of binding are notoriously shite. Doesn't surprise me at all they got it wrong.

Posted by: Sci | Apr 16 2020 14:03 utc | 383

Posted by: Sci | Apr 16 2020 14:03 utc | 387

Computer models are even better than statistics for supporting propaganda and marketing bullshit, and that is mainly what they are used for. As predictors of anything they are indeed shite, unless and until shown by experiment to have a good match to reality, then they can then be of some use. But even then you don't use them as predicters, you use them to find interesting things to investigate experimentally.

Posted by: Bemildred | Apr 16 2020 14:26 utc | 385

I have put the second German item that Phil linked (and summarized) through Google Translate. The conclusions are startling and seem very relevant to the suppositions going forward as to how SARS-Cov-2 actually interacts with a person's immune system.
Posted by: Really?? | Apr 16 2020 0:52 utc | 337

That was an excellent link! I re-read it in the German, and found another excellent page on the site, below. This author is really an excellent source, he is extremely balanced and logical, it is worth making a note of the website for further reference.

Also on the site was a link to an excellent (rather technical of course) paper by Li et al. Link also below, for those who might be interested.

The original link again
Immunschwäche und Schwangerschaft – kein Covid-19 Risikofaktor

Another interesting article on the same site
Neues Verständnis der Covid-19 Epidemie - Vielleicht 90% von Coronainfektionen unbemerkt!

Recently I commented on the fact that figures of 15% and 80-90% recurring in research on rates of asymptomatic Covid-19 in the population. The following very interesting paper in Science substantially reinforces that observation (linked in the above article).
The Li et al paper
Substantial undocumented infection facilitates the rapid dissemination of novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV2)

Posted by: BM | Apr 16 2020 14:39 utc | 386

b, have you given any thought to changing the name of your site to "The Mechanical Hound"? it has an nice ring to it, doesn't it?

Posted by: Fallen Scales | Apr 16 2020 14:58 utc | 387

Japan - vertical isolation posterboy - has just declared nationwide state of emergency:

Japan declares nationwide state of emergency amid coronavirus spread

China expects second wave of COVID-19 to come in November:

China may be hit by second wave of coronavirus in November: Chinese expert

Posted by: vk | Apr 16 2020 15:03 utc | 388

@ 353 jackrabbit... thanks.. your recommendation hasn't been taken up... i think the difference i see from reading your posts is that you seem to think the gov't wants to capitalize on the crisis, as opposed to getting rid of the crisis.. i can't see that myself.. i think gov'ts make mistakes and i think nassim talebs and the authors comments from that link @ 335 that krollchem provides are approaching it from a different angle.. now, maybe i have read your comments wrong, and if so i apologize in advance for that...

@ 367 peter.. thanks..

Posted by: james | Apr 16 2020 15:03 utc | 389

On top of that, the business is juicy for the French administration: they have already given 700,000 fines and placed more than 1,500 in temporary custody for the recalcitrants.
A French MP who wanted to visit a prison to see how the conditions were there has been prevented to do it.

Posted by: Mina | Apr 16 2020 15:10 utc | 390

Thank you for the clarification.
My source was:
According to which
"The UK government does not include deaths outside hospitals in its official figures. But data from five European countries that do include deaths in care homes show that as many people – and in some cases more – die in care homes as in hospitals.
"Given the appalling lack of preparedness of the Tory government, it is unimaginable that the situation is any better in the UK – which means that the real death toll in this country is nearing 30,000, not including deaths of people in their own home.
"The second-highest in the world behind only the US, in spite of having weeks longer to prepare than Spain and Italy.

"At least two thousand UK care homes have reported coronavirus outbreaks – with many of them suffering double-figure deaths among their residents.

"Thousands upon thousands of people not able to access hospital treatment because government-imposed policies deny it to them – and huge numbers dying.

"Around 13,000 hidden deaths, perhaps even more, in care homes not equipped to treat them – or to prevent other residents becoming infected – while thousands of NHS coronavirus beds lay empty..."

That seems to me, if true, to confirm my assertion, though it certainly does not directly contradict your source.

Posted by: bevin | Apr 16 2020 15:31 utc | 391

bevin #323

Great retort there bevin.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Apr 16 2020 15:39 utc | 392

@bevin, the ONS also confirms that the government, as well as the NHS, only includes hospital deaths. See the bottom of either of the linked reports -
Table 1: Definitions of COVID-19 deaths between different sources (...) DHSC COVID-19 (as published on GOV.UK) (...) NHS England (...) Deaths in hospitals (...)
The ONS includes all deaths.

Posted by: Brendan | Apr 16 2020 15:52 utc | 393

Denying any wrongdoing, some gov sources are now erasing the fact some sailors say cases were already on board a month ago and have to admit instead that the vessel was at sea without outside contacts since three months.
That would mean the sailors who were already infected mid-March had caught it some 2 months before?
A clearer chronology is needed. Any website showing the exact road taken by the Charles de Gaulle?

Posted by: Mina | Apr 16 2020 16:11 utc | 394

Interview with Zhang Jixian, a Wuhan respiratory doctor, the first doctor to alert the medical system of the novel coronavirus:

Chinese doctor recalls first encounter with mysterious virus

Posted by: vk | Apr 16 2020 16:15 utc | 395

You are correct. I am more and more convinced that the root cause is the long war against Communism, which in fact was a war against socialist ideas. A defensive war to preserve capitalists from threats to their power and property.

Interestingly enough the long term consequences of this war and particular campaigns such as McCarthyism are easily detected in our discussions of issues such as the Covid crisis.

The two sides, putting aside their claims to be nothing more than attempts to discover the truth, are, on the one hand, those who are sympathetic to socialist ideas. And, on the other, those who, having grown up in societies in which anticommunism was close to being the state religion, felt themselves forced, when they became critical of aspects of those societies, their cultures, and their government, realising that to look at the socialist critique might be dangerous, could be career destroying and possibly lead to their permanent exclusion from government jobs, political advancement, academic careers or even polite society, channeled their criticism of the status quo into the licensed critiques of the 'libertarians' the Austrian Economists and the late Ayn Rand who taught that this isn't really capitalism, but a system polluted by socialist ideas and compromised by its enemies.
That allowed such critics and contrarians to rage against the government and even the economic system without running the risk of being mistaken, by anyone in power, for people who would do anything to change them.

One function of this kind of mindset is that 'libertarians' are generally of the opinion that what is wrong with society is that the, perfectly designed, capitalist system, has been betrayed- the McCarthyites said that the Communists had secretly taken over key offices. And the list of those suspected of these betrayals never stopsd growing: the illuminati, the Jews, the Catholics, the Russians, the Chinese, lizards, the occult.
It doesn't matter that the 'culprits' are never actually identified in the act, it is enough to promote the idea that 'elites', criminals, or whoever is responsible for what socialists see quite clearly are the obvious and direct results of running society for the profit of a few at the expense not only of the many, but of the environment, other species and the planet itself.

Unfortunately, given the intensely anti-communist brainwashing to which Americans have been subject for decades, the default position for those critical of the Imperial society tends to be from the "Individualist/libertarian" spectrum. And from their position the lessons of the conjunction of neo-liberalism with the pandemic is horrifyingly illustrative of the need for socialism- the very thing which, all their lives, they have learned to fear.

From this position it is almost necessary-unless one is ready to change one's deep-seated beliefs- to deny either that there is a pandemic, or that it can be suppressed by society, or that China appears to have made exemplary progress in the matter, or that it was a predictable natural occurrence, or that its mortality can be directly attributed to neo-liberal policies.
The problem being that, for the critics and contrarians who join in the conversation from the right, neo-liberalism is close to being the ideal form of society. They are after all, courtesy of Ayn Rand, Milton Friedman, Jo Schumpeter, Friedrich von Hayek, Steve Bannon, Donald Trump and all, in the final analysis partisans of capitalism, red in tooth and claw.

Posted by: bevin | Apr 16 2020 16:25 utc | 396

- From: the New York Times:

"He Could Have Seen What Was Coming: Behind Trump’s Failure on the Virus".

Quote: (Not from the NYT !!).

Over the weekend, The New York Times published a bombshell report: “He Could Have Seen What Was Coming: Behind Trump’s Failure on the Virus: An examination reveals the president was warned about the potential for a pandemic but that internal divisions, lack of planning and his faith in his own instincts led to a halting response.” One Times takeaway noted that Trump ignored warnings about the pandemic “from the intelligence community, national security aides and government health officials.”

- But senator Lindsey Graham only praised "Our Dear Leader" (a.k.a. D.J. Trump).

This quote comes from a website called "".


Posted by: Willy2 | Apr 16 2020 16:28 utc | 397

@ 400 bevin.. your post is no better witnessed then in the comments and overview of pat langs at sst on the topic of china and the pandemic..

pat is an old school commie fearing nutcase... mentioning communism is like waving a red flag in front of a bull..

Posted by: james | Apr 16 2020 16:29 utc | 398

The UK's Office for National Statistics (ONS) has just published its Analysis of deaths involving COVID-19.
Even though it reports 3,912 deaths involving the coronavirus (COVID-19) that occurred in March 2020 in England and Wales, it also states that:
The overall mortality rate in March 2020 was lower than the five-year average
This appears to be the opposite of what it reported only two days ago that the number of deaths in one week was 6,082 more than the five-year average
This huge discrepancy makes it hard to believe both those reports at the same time.
Posted by: Brendan | Apr 16 2020 12:42 utc | 382

This discrepancy is caused by a very expensive fudge, that dramatically distorts the data. "Expensive" in this case meaning expensive in credibility. The price they pay for that fudge is the lowering of the mortality rate to below the five-year average, thereby making fools of themselves and making the manipulation obvious.

This is a HOTTIE!!!

It shows the government's narrative is already starting to fall apart!

What they have done is this: in order to try to justify their grossly inflated panic porn (even after removing their designation of Covid-19 as a highly dangerous communicable disease!), they misrepresented death rates by representing all deaths as age-standardised mortality rates (ASMRs). See, for example, Figures 1 and 3.

Why is this a problem? Because covid deaths occur virtually exclusively in a relatively very rare age group of over 70's and especially over 80's. By representing deaths as age-standardised deaths, they are skewing the whole of the data to give equal weight to every age group. As a direct result of doing so, they end up with this patently false and patently absurd statement:

Taking into account the age structure of the population, the rate of deaths due to COVID-19 was 68.5 deaths per 100,000 persons
That is saying, in effect, that for every 1000 people living in England and Wales, 0.685 of them died in March 2020 from Covid-19. The population of England and Wales is about 59 million, so the above statement is equivalent to claiming that 40,400 people died from Covid-19 in England and Wales During March 2020!

Sounds frightening, doesn't it? That's the whole purpose! Yet the total number of deaths in England and Wales in March from all causes was only 47,358!

*** FAKE NEWS !!! ***

Use of age-standardised mortality rates here is inappropriate because it grossly misrepresents the data, as you can see very clearly by my comparison above. In effect, what it is doing is to scale the deaths in each age group by different scaling factors, giving equal weight to each age group by compensating for their differing population frequencies. The average age for Covid deaths is over 80, and the over 80's form only a very small part of the population, therefore the distortion is huge.

The use of this trick here is a politically motivated stunt, intended to enhance panic porn. It will backfire, because it seriously undermines the basis of that panic porn, and proves that the UK government is deliberately distorting Covid-19 statistics in order to exaggerate fear.

The ONS try to justify their use of age-standardised mortality rates with the following statement:

ASMRs are a better measure of mortality than the number of deaths, as they account for the population size and age structure.
Are they a better measure of mortality than the number of deaths? Only if your intention is to deceive.

But that is not the only trick the ONS is using here to exaggerate Covid deaths!

Firstly, they add in the "involving Covid" stunt to further inflate the numbers. This is a totally irrelevant distraction. According to their own description, they assign a "most likely underlying cause of death", but if the patient (who might have died in a car crash, to take an extreme example) happened to have had a Covid-19 test, that (as a result of UK Government policy) automatically gets mentioned on the death certificate, and is then classed by the ONS as a death "involving Covid-19". Ignore the "involving Covid-19" deaths, they are irrelevant, according to ONS's own definitions.

Secondly, they have inflated the number of deaths "mainly caused by Covid-19". This is very clear from the ONS charts: See Figure 4.

Note the massive reduction of deaths caused by heart disease compare to the 5-year average - this should immediately raise suspicions, and indicates that they have classified far too many deaths caused by heart disease as "Covid-19 deaths". Also the deaths due to other respiratory diseases and to cerebrovascular diseases is significantly reduced compared to the five year average, which also arouses suspicions. Therefore the raw data for the numbers of "deaths caused by Covid-19" are inflated.

Thirdly, in the category of deaths "caused by covid-19" the ONS has even included deaths where there was only a mention of the suspicion of Covid-19, with no test.

Posted by: BM | Apr 16 2020 16:32 utc | 399

Posted by: vk | Apr 16 2020 16:15 utc | 399

Zhang's experience during the 2003 SARS outbreak, when she worked as a medical expert investigating suspected patients in Wuhan, made her sensitive to signs of an epidemic. After reading the CT images of the elderly couple, she summoned their son, demanding a CT scan of him too.
"At first their son refused to be examined. He showed no symptoms or discomfort, and believed we were trying to cheat money out of him," said Zhang.

So people have to pay for hospital services? Interesting.
Quite peculiar kind of socialism they have over there.

Chinese doctor recalls first encounter with mysterious virus

Posted by: hopehely | Apr 16 2020 16:45 utc | 400

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