Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
May 08, 2020

Early Lockdown Lifting Will Prolong The Greater Depression

Despite the so called lockdown the number of new cases of Covid-19 in the U.S. is barely sinking. It is only because the heavy outbreak in New York is now in decline that the number sinks at all. In most other states the numbers are just stable or still rising. But the White House and many state governors are lifting the restrictions and want everybody to go back to a normal life. This won't work.


Source 91-DIVOC - bigger

Two weeks after the states declare that everything can be reopened the new cases number is likely to again increase.

But people need to believe that it is secure to go back to normal life before they do so. They will not consume more than necessary unless they feel that it is safe to do so. How can they develop that trust while the numbers and headlines continue to show bad news?

The fear is reasonable at least for everyone over the age of 50 and for the many obese U.S. citizens. Covid-19 spreads easily, there is no medication against it and the infection fatality rate in the U.S. is estimated to be 1.3%, much higher than for the flu, even without accounting for New York County.

A good thing is that fear is the only personality-based variable that predicts virus-mitigating behavior. People who fear to get sick will continue their social-distancing and hopefully wear their masks.


bigger

Some 80% of GDP and employment in the U.S. is generated by services. The economy depends on people feeling safe. Who will go to a restaurant, a theater or on a plane as long as the trust that it is safe to do so is not there? The people will learn about the risks in those places and avoid them. That behavior will prolong the crisis.

A better strategy would have been to increase the lockdown measures until the number of new cases goes sharply down. People would then have regained some trust. Lifting the lockdown only when the people feel it is secure to do so would have been much better for the long term economy then the current rush.

The U.S. now has an enormous unemployment problem. To solve that problem as fast as possible the people need security and peace of mind. Only then can the economy spring back.


bigger

It is likely that the real unemployment numbers are some 25% higher than the official numbers. Economist Nouriel Roubini is right in calling this the 'Greater Depression'. It is now already larger than the one 90 years ago.

As the U.S. does not have a reliable social safety net the shock its economy will go through will be much longer lasting than the one in European economies. A lot of jobs will take several years to come back if they do so at all. Many people will lose their housing. General education and health will further decline. Crime will rise and more nutters will go crazy.

One current Amazon bestseller is by an anti-vaxxer who claims this is a 'plandemic', that Anthony Fauci funded the Wuhan lab, and that covering your mouth 'activates' the virus. The author is Judy Mikovits, a disgraced 'scientist' who has been caught faking her research and papers. She was fired from her institution when she was caught stealing its proprietary data.

That such a book sells at all shows the deep mistrust the people have in their government.

The U.S. needs a prolonged unemployment program to keep its people out of misery. It needs an enormous infrastructure program to bring the many millions of people back into work and to reignite the economy.

But neither the Republicans nor the Democrats are calling for those measures. Instead they are busy shuffling trillions of dollars to those who already have too much money.

Posted by b on May 8, 2020 at 18:08 UTC | Permalink

Comments
« previous page | next page »

Way back in late Feb/early March they were saying 45% of the US population could become infected with a mortality rate of 1 - 2%. That means 150milllion people sick and 1.5 - 3 million dead.

Obviously we are nowhere near those numbers now some 7 weeks later. The mortality rate is in the 0.01 - 0.02% range and there are are total of some 70,000 confirmed deaths from Covid. So what can we say?
The social distancing has worked!
The quarantine and lockdown has been a fantastic success! So the projections we’re wrong, who cares?

And certainly there is a second wave to consider but given what we see now, and how far off early projections were, we should be celebrating not wondering if it will ever be safe to go outside again. And if the projections regarding the second wave are anything like the first, it will probably be significantly LESS deadly.

If we had a competent government we could systematically begin loosening restrictions in areas where there are little or NO CASES and focus on testing and continued social distancing/quarantine where, as Governor Cuomo says the “hot spots” are. Keep the at risk populations (elderly etc) protected and test, test, test.

But we have no such thing. The fallout from this fiasco could make the country basically ungovernable. In many ways it already has. Trump (that means the Federal Government) has already shown the inability to exercise any kind of meaningful authority over the States. Governors, be they Red Team or Blue Team have basically been forging their own plans in dealing with this pandemic. With varying results. This very well could be the beginning of the end of the Republic. But it’s not the virus itself, it’s the incompetence of the political class and the built in liabilities of a profit driven health system that are driving the country to ruin.

Posted by: Mark | May 9 2020 3:50 utc | 101

b

As I read it, you have misrepresented the conclusions in your linked article about the IFR being 1.3%. Instead it calculated the SYMPTOMATIC IFR (IFR-S) as being 1.3%. After including the number of asymptomatic the overall IFR will be lower. I actually found this calculation rather heartening, though it depends on what symptomatic/asymptomatic ratio turns out to be. What we really need is better data e.g. antibody tests to more accurately determine the total number of infections.

"The IFR-S in the US was estimated to be 1.3% (95% central credible interval: 0.6% to 2.1%). County-specific rates varied from 0.5% to 3.6%. The overall IFR for COVID-19 should be lower when we account for cases that remain and recover without symptoms."

Posted by: atomician | May 9 2020 4:10 utc | 102

re Posted by: farm ecologist | May 8 2020 22:37 utc | 55
"We already know that blacks tend to be more severely affected than whites, and thus it's conceivable that whites could similarly be more prone than east Asians. That's an easily testable hypothesis for anybody with access to sufficiently detailed epidemiological data.
Anybody know whether this has been looked at?"

Yep the englanders have been going right into breakdown of the stats by race, gender, income and any other variable they can extract.
They have found that Afro types are around 200% more likely to die if they get covid

ME types about 175% more than whites and South East Asians 150%
and South Asians (eg from the Indian Subcontinent 140%.
This is based upon statistical analysis of the 30,000+ deaths from covid in england.
A bloke was rabbiting on about on the BBC, and said that they tried adjusting for poverty but there wasn't much change.

A big chunk of health care workers in UK are what they call BAME (Black Asian Minority Ethnic) and covid has been laying waste to BAME staff. Judging from the photos of healthcare staff killed there, many of them were 30's or 40's, healthy without other conditions, but now dead.
If this thing was deliberately created, you'd have to conclude white supremacy appears to be a primary outcome.

Posted by: A User | May 9 2020 4:26 utc | 103

James @ 98:

What Y-R @ 91 did not mention is that every state in Australia has its own approach to dealing with COVID-19. Some states have ordered slightly more severe shutdowns than others. Border controls between states are being enforced as well and anyone who has to travel interstate is subject to a 2-week quarantine in the state of arrival. This has stopped COVID-19 from spreading.

Most clusters of infections have occurred in hospitals, nursing homes and in areas where there are beaches or a high number of wealthy residents inclined to international travel. There is currently a cluster of cases in a meat-processing plant in the state of Victoria. That state is likely to stay in Stage 3 lockdown for longer than other states.

The severity or not of COVID-19 in Western countries perhaps says more about the particular social context in those nations than about the measures they took to combat the disease. In some European countries, mortality has been high for a great many different reasons: high air pollution levels in some (Italy for example) or a factory-farm business model in running nursing homes, in which low-paid migrants on contracts care for up to 200 patients in the one facility, spreading the contagion from one inmate to the next, and then go home to spread the disease in their own crowded communities (Sweden). Comparisons between countries in their responses to COVID-19 will be neither here nor there; the issue is how well countries were already treating their most vulnerable groups and how well funded and equipped their healthcare sectors were to deal with sudden crises.

Posted by: Jen | May 9 2020 5:21 utc | 104

@ 812684 with the stats by "race" etc.

Thanks. It was your last statement that gave me pause
"
If this thing was deliberately created, you'd have to conclude white supremacy appears to be a primary outcome.
"
I have thought since the beginning that this virus was human created and consciously distributed. What you call white supremacy to me has always been private finance owners supremacy. The Western world they run is maxed out on debt and war stymied so global pandemic furthering the fear control narrative was necessary.

Will the stronger effects of the virus on various ethnicities change the tenor of global discourse? I think it may. You are reporting the actions of a rabid dog cult of our species.

Posted by: psychohistorian | May 9 2020 5:23 utc | 105

812684 = A User at comment # 124

Posted by: psychohistorian | May 9 2020 5:25 utc | 106

Yep the englanders

Whoever wrote this should read more deeply. The statistics bandied around in UK showed Chinese far lower rates of mortality than Whites in UK population. Then again Sweden found higher death rates among Somali women in Sweden and thinks it is Vitamin D conversion rates for black skin in Northern Hemisphere with low sunlight. It is true that in UK hotspots are London and B'ham where Whites are not really a majority nowadays and these are the 2 biggest cities with congestion and air pollution. Manchester has few cases though it has huge numbers of Chinese students. As for health care staff mortality - they are rarely healthy, eat crap food, smoke, and quite a few use narcotics.

Why people think it is still nuns in white wimples who run hospitals is unclear. They are factories for processing sick people many of whom get even sicker in hospital. It is a great place to get infected - they are breeder farms for viruses and bacteria

Posted by: Paul Greenwood | May 9 2020 5:53 utc | 107

Jen | May 9 2020 5:21 utc | 124

"There is currently a cluster of cases in a meat-processing plant in the state of Victoria."

There is more to this than meets the eye.

Majority Indian/Pakistani/Bangladeshi non-unionised workforce working for a labour hire company from Brisbane. Queensland seems to be the home of dodgy operators.
Low paid workers on 457 visas or equivalent & not covered by the over-hyped JobKeeper allowance,which has been exposed as excluding the most vulnerable migrant workers from receiving any benefits.

These workers are put in a position where they have to work to survive.
There is a stench of cover up.
I imagine this is similar to how the US treats its workers.

Posted by: ted01 | May 9 2020 6:28 utc | 108

Russ #103

Last I heard you Aussies were literally burning your whole country down with your duly elected government throwing on the fuel.

Remain calm comrade Russ, there are many aussies that despise their ignorant governments who remain in thrall to the mendacious mining magnates, be it coal or gas or oil. There are many aussies who are disgusted with craven fawning over all things USA. There are many aussies who go solar, not because of affordability but because of a deliberate readiness to be part of the change for a better future. They have a high uptake of rooftop panels and grid feed in.

The enormous fire season just passed is not merely a result of gross national ignorance but rather a history of gross deforestation, failed appreciation of the extraordinary land management practices of its Indigenous peoples and an ecosystem dominated by highly volatile forest remnants. The enormous fire season just passed is an indicator of under-resourced fire management groups (mostly voluntary) throughout that land. It is a symbol of failed government in thrall to a failed private capital, neo-liberal economic system that boot licks the billionaires.

I share your anger and disgust with the system that creates that fawning, willing slave system. But don't shoot the people, rather criticise them for their failed logic or incomplete case, for sure. Let us not stoop to hating poorly supported ideas as being cause for xenophobia. Leave that to the appalling ignorance that passes for the aussie media.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | May 9 2020 7:29 utc | 109

@all -

Had to deletes some 30 or so comments on this thread.

Besides the known trolls (aka donkeytale) there were like 20+ which came from first time posters all with similar (anti-lockdown, anti-vaxxer) themes.

Someone is investing real money into those disinformation campaigns.

Posted by: b | May 9 2020 7:36 utc | 110

AP Exclusive: Docs show top WH officials buried CDC report

The decision to shelve detailed advice from the nation’s top disease control experts for reopening communities during the coronavirus pandemic came from the highest levels of the White House, according to internal government emails obtained by The Associated Press.

The files also show that after the AP reported Thursday that the guidance document had been buried, the Trump administration ordered key parts of it to be fast-tracked for approval.

The trove of emails show the nation’s top public health experts at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention spending weeks working on guidance to help the country deal with a public health emergency, only to see their work quashed by political appointees with little explanation.

Posted by: b | May 9 2020 7:38 utc | 111

Mikovits-the science

[lots of unsourced bullshit deleted.

Ptf - if you want to continue commenting here please do so with facts, not with obvious nonsense - b.]

Posted by: Pft | May 9 2020 7:41 utc | 112

Regarding the death rate, it's bad, very bad. You only get the really low percent if you measure total number of people infected / death, but if you look at the total number of people who develop symptoms by death its well over 5%.
If you measure death rate by total number of people recovered / death it might end up being closer to 10% but those numbers are not in yet.
Posted by: Christian J Chuba | May 8 2020 18:36 utc | 4

That is comparable to measuring the fatality rate of road accidents where the injured party has severe head injury, and confusing that with the fatality rate for all road accidents; or measuring the fatality rate for falls of at least 100 meters, and confusing that with the fatality rate for all falls.

Pure unadulterated delusion.

Posted by: BM | May 9 2020 8:39 utc | 113

the amount of trolls on this topic is staggering in both rudeness and disinformation they spew..

i remember when B disagree with vanessa beeley suddenly her followers flooded here insulting the host...

i smell paid astroturfer here.

remember when B cover 737 max suddenly trolls claiming as pilots came here to defend boeing and blame third world pilots as if white pilots never crashed a jet..

Posted by: milomilo | May 9 2020 9:24 utc | 114

re Paul Greenwood | May 9 2020 5:53 utc | 107
I cannot help but notice your dubious statements lack a source.
I know what I heard on englander propaganda machine, the beeb, so that when you made the incorrect contention about mortality among people of asian desent without providing a scintilla of evidence, it stuck out like dogs' balls. So I checked out the media & then the science.

The media first, The BAME groups hit harder by Covid-19 than white people, UK study suggests says:

"Early research into the first patients critically ill with Covid-19 in UK hospitals indicates that black and Asian people are more likely to be badly affected by coronavirus than white people.

The Intensive Care National Audit and Research Centre found that 35% of almost 2,000 patients were non-white, nearly triple the 13% proportion in the UK population as a whole.

Fourteen per cent of those with the most serious cases were Asian and the same proportion were black, according to the study, which has triggered calls for further research to understand why the virus appears to be having a disproportionate impact on non-white ethnic groups."

That article is based on a comprehensive braakdown of coronavirus patients in the UK by age, gender race etc.
A table of results for that study can be found here

Contrary to what Greenwood asserts, there is no evidence that patients of East Asian (Chinese) or south East Asian (Korea, Singapore etc) descent have fared better than so-called "white people". All appear to have done worse.

AFAIAC that means un coloured men are not unluckier than Chinamen, quite the reverse, in fact.

Not that it matters, we'ere all in the pooh long term, but we'll never fight back against the 'whatever you wanna call' 'em Oligarchs, elites, 1 %ers etc, down, as long as some of us are told that everything is a conspiracy to bring them, 'the decent folk', undone.

Posted by: A User | May 9 2020 9:28 utc | 115

B , i would suggest you write an article covering the rambos caught by venezuelan authorities.. They are from Green Beret vets from where our dear Col Lang of SST came to geing..

ppl here who oft visit MoA and SST will notice the old Col barely cover venezuela episode , as the Col a firm believer of American Exceptinalism consider south america as US backyard..

now his compatriots are captured in bumbling display of counter intelligence ops , the good Col keep mum on the super soldiers of USA captured by 3rd world bankrup nation..

that venezuealn post will certianly bring out many trolls from US state dept payroll hohoho..

Posted by: milomilo | May 9 2020 9:29 utc | 116

Posted by: uncle tungsten | May 9 2020 7:29 utc | 109

No one's more constantly conscious about the direct evil and destructive consequences of deforestation than I, and I frequently put everything including the Corona bug in that context, most recently at what's currently #18 here though almost no one replied to my comment.

Come March I was just completing my winter research about trees toward my plan to start writing a novel about them, each day going to the woods and writing amid the trees themselves. That's when this whole evil, including amid its insanity the closing of most of the parks, began descending.

Since I'm sufficiently knowledgeable and highly motivated to hike, I found good places to go and never missed a day of hiking except for rainy days, but under the crazed circumstances the peace and calm I feel necessary for writing was a non-starter, so even though all the parks are now re-opened everything's still up in the air for me personally.

So the trees are what directly galvanized me to go beyond mere rejection of the self-evident lies of the government and media to research the detailed character of the lies and write against them. After all, the fascist scum left me with nothing else to do.

So there's just one of my personal grievances against the terror-lockdown campaign, in addition to many others including the job I expected not being there, and all of that just building atop what was already the big rock of my anti-totalitarianism which came from 25+ years of research on that. I have the keenest eye for that, and our current moment is the most dangerous ever.

But don't shoot the people, rather criticise them for their failed logic or incomplete case, for sure. Let us not stoop to hating poorly supported ideas as being cause for xenophobia. Leave that to the appalling ignorance that passes for the aussie media.

I'm from NJ in the US, and I can't imagine anywhere could be worse than here for those phenomena. Whatever xenophobia I feel begins on this very street, since all I see are persons totally foreign in every way.

That was already mostly true before the Corona terror campaign began. The thing that got worse was seeing so many acquaintances from the community food movement and the hiking groups, and almost everyone I know online directly or by reputation, flip 180 degrees to suddenly support a fraud-based totalitarian terror campaign.

Posted by: Russ | May 9 2020 9:40 utc | 117

The US Department of Health & Human Service (HHS), National Institute of Health (NIH) on-line database shows a project, UNDERSTANDING THE RISK OF BAT CORONAVIRUS EMERGENCE that started on 1st June 2014 and ended on 31st May 2019.

The Project Leader was Dr Peter Daszak who is the President of EcoHealth Alliance.

Extract from the Ecohealth Alliance Website:

Regarding NIH Termination of Coronavirus Research Funding

"It’s been EcoHealth Alliance’s position for the past 15 years that coronaviruses present a clear and immediate threat to our safety. That seems clearer now than ever before. The research that the National Institutes of Health terminated aimed to analyze the risk of coronavirus emergence and help in designing vaccines and drugs to protect us from COVID-19 and other coronavirus threats. In fact, genetic sequences of two bat coronaviruses that we discovered with this grant have been used as lab tools to test the breakthrough antiviral drug Remdesivir. For that reason, it is clear that this research is vital for protecting the lives of Americans, and people around the world who are battling COVID-19." (My highlight)

So their funding for Bat Coronavirus Research was cut on May 2019 (and Ecohealthcare Alliance don't seem happy about it) and then we have a coronavirus pandemic.

Posted by: ADKC | May 9 2020 9:49 utc | 118

@ADKC - You are lying.

Th EcoHealth Alliance had a NIH program that ran out on in May 2019. It was about collecting bat viruses to see what is there.

It then had another program that was terminated by Trump in April 2020

The NIH awarded the original grant for the project during the Obama administration, but renewed it in July 2019. The funding allotted this year, and cut last week, came from the Trump administration.

What you are insinuating with your post is a conspiracy theory that has no basis.

Posted by: b | May 9 2020 9:59 utc | 119

Russ #118

Thank you for your response. I too am locked out of the forests that I love very deeply. Some I walk through have never been logged and dense stands of huge red cedars and massive buttress rooted giants. These are the forests that have changed little during the Holocene. There is a place of extraordinary tranquillity. Occasional resonant call of native pigeon or the fantastic calls of a a liarbird with its very own local dialect not heard in other forests. I am off to that restful place as soon as the lockdown ends.

I spend my days away from home in some of the great forests and many are rapidly regrowing after the fires and some destroyed for a century ... but they will return thanks to the bats and the birds crapping while they recover to one day fly over again. I have a note on the value of a tree: you might find it useful:

This document assesses the value of a hollow bearing tree for its hollow bearing characteristics only; it does not take into account such values as: food source to wildlife, nesting opportunities for nest building birds, ground stabilization, water runoff mitigation, carbon consumption, shade value, historic or aesthetic value. This document is the educated opinion only of the author and should be taken as such for further information other expert opinions should be sought.
A 10 year old tree can support one small nest box such as those used by lorikeets, micro bats or sugar/squirrel gliders provided that the habitat is either intact or has been rehabilitated. For each subsequent 10 years of growth another nest box may be added to the tree.
In the wild it is reasonable to assume that a two hundred year old tree could have in excess of 20 hollows of various sizes it would be feasible therefore to suppose that one hollow would be added for each 10 years of life It would of course not be necessary to place nest boxes in a tree of this age as the nest holes would be well established within the trunk and branches of the tree. However, if you had to replace this hollow tree with recruits without hollows (at least for the first 200 years of life) then you would need to hang a single box in 20 replacement trees for a period of at least 200 years. Boxes would need to be replaced every 10 years to ensure quality of the hollow habitat.

The formula

If the approximate age of the tree is 200 years then we consider it to be equivalent to 20 nest boxes at an average price of $100/box
= $2000
Each nest box will need to be replaced every 10 years.
If we plant the same species of tree in the same area given correct growing conditions we can expect that in 200 - 300 years the nest boxes will be replaced by natural hollows1 or if we leave the tree in place it will live for at least another 300 years.
•: Average Price of Installed nest box ($100) x (approximate age of tree ÷ 10) x number of years until new tree replaces old one or tree will live (say 300) @2% inflation per annum

Therefore the value of the tree in terms of nest box replacement is $2,838,515.77

Posted by: uncle tungsten | May 9 2020 10:16 utc | 120

Ghost Ship | May 8 2020 23:33 utc | 63

Not the first time mentioned here: any deaths per million tell nothing until the acquired immunity of the population is measured at the same time and published in additon.

Posted by: Hausmeister | May 9 2020 10:22 utc | 121

b @119

No b. I am not lying.

The NIH database shows no other projects funded to Ecohealth Alliance after May 2019. but there is other funding for different organisations.

The funding that you never even got round to starting as far as I can see. All the article you link really does is confirm that the end of funding was not taken well by Ecohealth Alliance but, for all intents and purpose, that funding stopped in May 2019.

Thank you for not deleting my post.

Posted by: ADKC | May 9 2020 10:33 utc | 122

uncle tungsten | May 9 2020 10:16 utc | 120

I hope you can get back to your woods soon. (I guess you're not in walking distance and have nowhere to stow the car.) I'm heading out to my woods in about 15 minutes.

Thanks for the note about snags. And then their full ecological value goes to all the things the assessment didn't take into account.

Posted by: Russ | May 9 2020 11:02 utc | 123

The NIH database shows no other projects funded to Ecohealth Alliance after May 2019.

And you know that the database is up to date?

EcoHealth press statement issued after the funding was halted last month:

The research that the National Institutes of Health terminated aimed to analyze the risk of coronavirus emergence and help in designing vaccines and drugs to protect us from COVID-19 and other coronavirus threats. In fact, genetic sequences of two bat coronaviruses that we discovered with this grant have been used as lab tools to test the breakthrough antiviral drug Remdesivir. For that reason, it is clear that this research is vital for protecting the lives of Americans, and people around the world who are battling COVID-19. Our research was reviewed by independent scientists, considered extremely high priority by NIHNIAID Strategic Plan for COVID-19 Research, and funded in 2019.

Posted by: b | May 9 2020 11:23 utc | 124

During the early stages of the pandemic, there were moralising stories about how Italian hospitals had moved patients with Covid-19 into care homes with the effect of spreading the virus to the other (at age risk) residents with the result of the terrible rate of deaths in Italian Care Homes.

Today, I read in the Daily Mail that this is exactly what the NHS did in the UK. I understand that the death rate in UK care homes is 4 to 5 times higher than what it would normally be.

Posted by: ADKC | May 9 2020 11:28 utc | 125

This post is, I believe, on topic, but only just.

First...who remembers Bush the Younger and the affair of his AWOL period in the Texas National Guard?

Essentially most or all of the accusations were, are, true. However the original records were destroyed while 43 was Governor. The "original records" were the forged as duplicates. Then the accusations were made on TV MSM...and naturally this discredited the accusers and most people assumed illogically that 43 was therefore an innocent victim.

Now then, it seems to me that the same type or genre of con-job is using the somewhat nutty Mikovits in the same way to discredit her central claim. Again, however, this is a rhetorical deception, as it's fundamental that who says a thing is independent of the argument. A poorly delivered argument colors all subsequent argument as suspect out of hand.

..

Dear 'b'....Yes, this ought properly to be posted under another thread, but it does relate to the overall question of credibility.

And everyone knew that there would be an econo-crash well prior to the highly fortuitous appearance of the disease, upon which, now, all blame is loaded... CV-19 being a Pharmacos, turning the crowds ire away from the people who are looting the public and who caused the econo-crash.

RT has a post on the lady..."Censors crack down on ‘Plandemic’ conspiracy documentary. What’s so dangerous about it?"

That essay ends "Forbidden knowledge is tempting, and by wiping ‘Plandemic’ from the internet, Silicon Valley will only increase its notoriety."

Indeed this is true. Why then do it, unless an over-arching necessity to discredit the central idea the nutty lady presents - that it's a con, and a dangerous one.

Obviously one would promote the "arguments, easily discredited, of a nut - especially if despite an illogical argument, the conclusions were dangerously close to true...

Posted by: Walter | May 9 2020 11:38 utc | 126

Interesting round-up
https://www.politico.eu/article/coronavirus-europe-failed-the-test/

Posted by: Mina | May 9 2020 12:16 utc | 127

@97 Pft: "I will discuss the charges of scientific misconduct later. Nobody charged Judy with any such thing BTW."

I'm sorry, but when was the last time that anyone was "charged" over scientific misconduct?
Is there even a crime in the penal code called "scientific misconduct"?

"That the 2009 paper had an error which did not affect her conclusions, was an error from a collaborator in another lab."

What. The. F**K?

The error was the contamination of the test samples with XMRV DNA.
Mikovits conclusion was that XMRV is the cause of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.

How can that error not have affected her conclusions?

Oh, yeah, that's right: that error completely invalidates her conclusions, which is why Science came to this conclusion: "Given all of these issues, Science has lost confidence in the Report and the validity of its conclusions. We note that the majority of the authors have agreed in principle to retract the Report but they have been unable to agree on the wording of their statement. It is Science's opinion that a retraction signed by all the authors is unlikely to be forthcoming. We are therefore editorially retracting the Report."

"You all might want to read her books before judging her."

Why, exactly? She concocted the data in her paper. Why should we expect her book to be any more truthful?

"She has had a rough go so might make an error here and there in recalling past events."

She had it rough because she was a scientist who carried out sloppy experiments that led her to a false conclusion which she attempted to prove by manipulating her samples. And then got caught because she was lazy. Sympathy is not exactly deserved.

"Mikovits was Principal Investigator on the XMRV research grants unrelated to the test and required to have access research notes at all times as stipulated by the grants. The data notebooks do not contain any trade secrets or proprietary information."

All irrelevant. All research undertaken at WPI remained the property of WPI, not of the Principal Investigator. She was ordered to hand over her samples and she refused, so she was dismissed. Having been dismissed she had her notebooks removed from WPI and refused to return them, even though those notebooks at all times remained the sole property of WPI.

All the rest is simply an attempt to BS her way out of this situation: when she was dismissed she took something that did not belong to her, and when her ex-employer found out she refused to return them.

Posted by: Yeah, Right | May 9 2020 12:19 utc | 128

@104 Jen "What Y-R @ 91 did not mention is that every state in Australia has its own approach to dealing with COVID-19."

Australia is a Federation of states. A Commonwealth. On healthcare matters the Federal Government can issue guidelines but it is the individual states who must agree to carry out those guidelines. States are at liberty to "do their own thing", but in this pandemic those differences have been a matter of degree, not of substance. There have been no maverick states.

"Most clusters of infections have occurred in hospitals, nursing homes and in areas where there are beaches or a high number of wealthy residents inclined to international travel. There is currently a cluster of cases in a meat-processing plant in the state of Victoria. That state is likely to stay in Stage 3 lockdown for longer than other states."

All true, although I will point out that the most extreme "cluster" was a cruise ship that docked in Sydney and passengers were allowed to disembark without testing.

"The severity or not of COVID-19 in Western countries perhaps says more about the particular social context in those nations than about the measures they took to combat the disease."

Utter nonsense.

"Comparisons between countries in their responses to COVID-19 will be neither here nor there; the issue is how well countries were already treating their most vulnerable groups and how well funded and equipped their healthcare sectors were to deal with sudden crises."

Been there, done that.
https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2020/02/these-are-the-countries-best-prepared-for-health-emergencies/

Countries were ranked according to just those "issues", and the US ranked Number 1, and the UK ranked Number 2.

So if you go by those "issues" you will come up with exactly the wrong answer, which indicates that your base assumption is incorrect.


Posted by: Yeah, Right | May 9 2020 12:42 utc | 129

Just fyi..Kaiser Report guest (E1538) Lawrence Lepard of ema2.com about the Rubicon being crossed...says he's pretty sure US is on the cusp of "Weimar type inflation."

He makes what seem to be a credible case...together with vast unemployed and rule by ukase ...so how much is a beer in NYC ten years hence?

One ruble. It used to be a joke...but if you read the contemporary accounts from Weimar... (and I have in old letters withing my hamily's records) those accounts will chill you cold. And their implications are pretty nasty...

Ain't it a happy thing that we are supposed to blame a germ?

How Jolly!

Posted by: Walter | May 9 2020 12:48 utc | 130

b @124

Well b. that was the press release I quoted. And it says that Ecohealth Alliance was "funded in 2019". And according to the NIH database funding ended in May 2019 so the press release (you and I quote) and the NIN database are in agreement.

The NIH database is "up to date" because it shows projects funded in 2020 and the database shows no funding for Ecohealth Alliance after May 2019.

Ecohealth Alliance present themselves as if they were almost a campaigning group and also as some kind of alliance of interested parties from all fields. They appear to function by getting funding for research (mainly from Government grants [$15.1million in 2018]) and then use that funding to commission research/programs [$14.7million in 2018). The Echoheath Alliance bureaucracy is only $1.5million (in 2018) so they really are just a type of middle man).

What Ecohealth Alliance may really be is an industry group which aims to obtain funding to undertake research that will enable commercial companies to make money profit by providing medicines (like vaccines). Ecohealth Alliance financials are opaque in that they do not identify who their actual funders are (as far as I can see).

Their almost non-existent mission statement seems to be:

"EcoHealth Alliance leads cutting-edge research into the critical connections between human and wildlife health, and delicate ecosystems. With this science we develop solutions that promote conservation and prevent pandemics."

They make some broad claims about environment and conservation but really their overriding purpose is the interaction between humans and animals and how this is a vector for pandemics. Their slogan is/used to be (variations appear come and go) "A World Without Pandemics" and this seems to be their main focus.

I do suspect a link between Ecohealth Alliance and Emergent Biosolutions, who aim to provide a vaccine for Covid-19.

Posted by: ADKC | May 9 2020 12:49 utc | 131

Yeah, Right | May 9 2020 12:42 utc | 129

Oh, the simple question then is: „Countries were ranked according to just those "issues", and the US ranked Number 1, and the UK ranked Number 2.“ - fine, why then didn't they perform like this? Leaving aside the discussion of how credible this „forum“ is.

@All: several time I had asked here how people judge „QAnon“. The majority of the comments were that it is just a Trumpian psy-op to keep low educated retards in their filter bubble. Still true?

Posted by: Hausmeister | May 9 2020 12:54 utc | 132

Col. Lang has started a hare which I, for one, am tempted to go charging after.
A generally disliked person in the UK is Dr “Shagger” Ferguson of Imperial College who is generally blamed for most of the decisions - mad and otherwise - relating to COVID 19 (and the Foot and Mouth epidemic some years ago). He was recently “outed” by the press, slowly and I thought somewhat reluctantly, for breaking the lockdown by visiting a girl friend overnight.
According to Col.Lang’s site, the lady in question is a very senior member of an organisation called AVAAZ, which seems to have connections to Soros and possibly Mossad, and which, according the Guardian, boasted 30 million followers globally. There is the implication that Ferguson was visiting this girl on AVAAZ business, rather than recreationally as it were. I have never heard of AVAAZ, which is not saying much, but maybe there is something here.

Posted by: Montreal | May 9 2020 13:04 utc | 133

@Mark #101
It is a false argument to use a non-lockdown infection estimate to compare with our present lockdown nCOV status.

Posted by: c1ue | May 9 2020 13:16 utc | 134

If I were able to get out I would wear a mask and avoid crowded places, just as when I see a patch of poison ivy, I stay away from it rather than roll around and spread it all over.

I also wouldn't call for a planeload of napalm in spite of being very allergic.

For some reason there are efforts to push everyone into "You are either for house arrest or for the Evil Virus". No one is better at Divide and Conquer than Uncle Sam, although maybe he is not so good at the Conquer part anymore.

Posted by: Trailer Trash | May 9 2020 13:20 utc | 135

@Walter #130
There will be no Weimar style inflation in the US in this generation.
Weimar inflation occurred because it had odious debt due to the Versailles treaty. This debt was furthermore denominated in foreign currency.
The Weimar inflation occurred in response to that.
The US doesn't have this situation, nor is the US in a similar state as Zimbabwe. Most importantly, inflation in the US has trended the opposite to money printing.
Loss of reserve currency status is needed before a Weimar can even theoretically happen - and the USD is trending stronger than ever before, right now.

Posted by: c1ue | May 9 2020 13:22 utc | 136

"A good thing is that fear is the only personality-based variable that predicts virus-mitigating behavior. "

The only thing we have to save us is... fear itself?

Posted by: TG | May 9 2020 13:26 utc | 137

Posted by: Montreal | May 9 2020 13:04 utc | 134

I have never heard of AVAAZ, which is not saying much, but maybe there is something here.

Avaaz is the grandfather of the White Helmets chemical weapons hoax in Syria. You should read the series of articles by Cory Morningstar.

AVAAZ: THE GLOBE’S LARGEST & MOST POWERFUL BEHAVIOURAL CHANGE NETWORK [PART I]

In 2014 I wrote an article titled SYRIA: Avaaz, Purpose & the Art of Selling Hate for Empire. This article focused on the Avaaz sister org. Purpose, a for-profit public relations firm in New York City that specializes in behavioural change for many of the largest corporations and institutions on the planet. Specifically it focused on the campaigns Purpose created to foster public acquiescence (and even demand) for a war on Syria following the complete annihilation of Libya in which Avaaz played a vital role for the elites they serve.

Posted by: Petri Krohn | May 9 2020 13:26 utc | 138

@132 "Oh, the simple question then is: „Countries were ranked according to just those "issues", and the US ranked Number 1, and the UK ranked Number 2.“ - fine, why then didn't they perform like this?"

See my post to James.

In short: There was not a lot between Number 1 and Number 10 on that list in terms of preparedness. On paper. But when the punch on the mouth happened those governments that responded by heeding the advice of their experts did well, while those governments that let other voices whisper in their ear ended up prevaricating until it was too late and they were overtaken by events.

It really has nothing to do with resources: Vietnam, for one, had very little resources. But it had an extensive pandemic plan that it enacted very early and communicated to its population very effectively, and that simple combination allowed it to stay well on top of the outbreaks.


Posted by: Yeah, Right | May 9 2020 13:29 utc | 139

An interesting experiment is occurring right now with regards to the lockdowns and climate.
Predictions are for a 5% decrease in carbon emissions, worldwide in 2020.
This is particularly interesting given that overall oil consumption is expected to drop 30% for at least 1 month, 10% for another month.
If a lockdown - which effectively ended all airplane travel, which cut gasoline consumption in half or more, which locked people into their homes for months for a huge percentage of the Western world (and China), only drops CO2 emissions by 5% - is renewable energy really going to turn the tide?

Especially given that non-biomass, non-hydro renewable energy is providing about 2% of world energy consumption (according to Wiki)?

Posted by: c1ue | May 9 2020 13:29 utc | 140

Yes, B, people won 't cconsume more than necessary, economy sill slump further a bit or a big chunk -
and I see one aggravating factor.
I don t know if someone with more brain work and time has said it but what people consume most is servicesand
based on services. By its turn services is in developed economies by far the greatest slice of GDP.
aND they are the big factor of people a=gathering: tourism, restaurantes, sports, shopping promenades, schools...
IF we get much scared of coming back to normal, we will first be scared of service linked participation.
Which in turn will force the product indexes down again and for longer.
Is there anything un logical in this?

Posted by: augusto | May 9 2020 13:29 utc | 141

Let's remember the history of goalpost moving by the anti-lockdown crew here in MoA.

1) When it was just an epidemic, only affecting China, South Korea and Japan: racial theory, Asians were genetically vulnerable to the disease; Westerners were safe, so no reason to worry, no need for a lockdown in the Western nations;

1.5) Those filthy Chinese are just inferior. I knew all along they were a farce. They were bound to fail. Their wet markets and socialism are an abortion of History.

2) When it ravaged Italy: pollution in Lombardy, too many smokers and old people in Italy, Latin cultural habit of close personal contact, inferior healthcare system. Rich Western countries (Anglo-Saxon and Germanic countries) should not worry, no lockdown needed.

3) When it begun to lay waste on the UK, Germany, USA (and then the Nordic nations and smaller Germanic nations such as Austria, Switzerland etc.): it's all just a flu! 80,000 people die in the USA each year with flu and pneumonia! It was all a hoax from the very beginning!

4) When it killed 70,000+ people in the USA in two months: 360,000 people die every year from automobile accidents in the USA! It may not be "just a flu", but it is still a small price to pay in comparison to a lockdown! In the greater scheme of things, a lockdown is still not worth it! (the mask begins to fall here)

4.5) The virus' mortality rate is actually much smaller! We don't know how many people got the virus and showed no significant symptoms! It is still just a flu, if not even milder! The actual mortality rate is more like 0.000001%!

5) Well, actually, white Westerners are just genetically (i.e. racially) more prone to die from the virus. Actually, Asians are (racially) more resistant to the virus. Blacks are either more vulnerable than whites or somewhere in between (as if there were just three "races" in humankind...). It is what it is, but we can't afford a year-long lockdown! (here we're in full circle, as this is inverted argument #1).

Posted by: vk | May 9 2020 13:32 utc | 142

According to Col.Lang’s site, the lady in question is a very senior member of an organisation called AVAAZ,

Montreal | May 9 2020 13:04 utc

Seems like a human tragedy. Selflessly making rounds to relieve the suffering of superannuated nymphomaniacs, and getting fired for the good work.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | May 9 2020 13:35 utc | 143

Forgot the bonus argument:

3.5) The Western governments (i.e. our governments) are just testing us. They engineered the whole thing from the beginning. Fauci sponsored the Wuhan lab to develop the virus and release it. This is all a social engineering operation by our politicians to reshuffle our societal structure in order to build another, even stronger one. The West still rules! The West's still in control! Damn, our leaders are good at their jobs!

Posted by: vk | May 9 2020 13:36 utc | 144

Posted by: vk | May 9 2020 13:32 utc wrote "Let's remember the history of goalpost moving by the anti-lockdown crew here in MoA."

Nice try to charge the opposition with what you're guilty of, a very typical tactic of lefties.

It's the lockdown folks who've moved the goalposts. It was originally about "flatten the curve so the health care system isn't overloaded". That happened. Now it's about "saving lives" by locking people in their homes for many more months until the unicorn vaccine is developed.

In the long run, everybody except a few hermits is going to contract the disease, with whatever death rate that follows. Our only choice in the short term is whether or not to also impoverish the populace, which is what the lockdown does.

Posted by: Don Wills | May 9 2020 13:42 utc | 145

Now we know why Shinzo Abe extended the lockdown until May 31:

Japanese government, criticized for low testing rates, eases guidelines for seeking virus tests

Test corpses whose suspect death cause was COVID-19 (which it was refusing to do, as I posted here earlier) is a good place to start. After all, they can wait for the results.

Amid pressure, Tokyo releases COVID-19 testing and infection data dating back to January

Yep, you read it right, folks: in Japan, the public doesn't have the right to information from the government. They have to fight for it. Many data we're accustomed to have here in the West is confidential in Japan, and are not released.

And people still don't believe me when I say Japan is a fascist state.

Abe administration bombs in global survey on coronavirus response

The obvious is the obvious.

--//--

@ Posted by: Don Wills | May 9 2020 13:42 utc | 145

Besides China, Cuba and Vietnam (and, maybe, South Korea... maybe), which country "flattened the curve"? Please, give me the data. Give your source.

Posted by: vk | May 9 2020 13:57 utc | 146

by: c1ue | May 9 2020 0:14 utc | 72
Good to see you on the age and mortality statistics-based side of this issue.

VietnamVet | May 9 2020 0:53 utc | 81
You get to the heart of the issue, that the pure or nearly pure corporatist states don't want to and have shed the ability to handle the pandemic in an effective and humane manner.

I think if b and bevin (for example) would recognize the above, they at least wouldn't disagree with the 'anti-lockdown' position so stubbornly, even in the face of the stark age-and-co-morbidity statistics.

If we had public-spirited capacity and desire in the US/UK governments, they would've taken strong preventive and tracking actions by early February.  But instead there was almost complete non-action. This included US refusal to accept millions of testing kits offered by China for free and/or at low cost, because the CDC thought US corporations should make US testing kits, and then that was botched, delaying testing till March. That's just the start of a consistent corruption and lack of capacity story.

The result of lack of capacity is a de facto 'herd immunity' strategy in the US/UK. So, for me, the only real-world question now is how to carry out that strategy in the way that has the least cost to our societies.

But that is not the question that good leftist folks like Bevin and b are taking a position on. Their premise is that some sort of Covid eradication strategy, a Korea/China tracking/testing/isolating/ strategy, is still possible in the US/UK. I think that's absurdly unrealistic, but what can I say? I guess we just see the immediate possibilities in the US/UK differently.

Posted by: fairleft | May 9 2020 13:58 utc | 147

c1ue | May 9 2020 13:22 utc | 136 (no Wiemar) Oh, good. That's very comforting.

Wanna bet? (actually we don't have a choice...we all bet like it or not)

Yes, your technical view of Weimar and the US situations, which are not identical, does seem valid - thus I tend to agree...but I am confident that the US is going to have US Style Inflation.

We ought to let Kaiser know his nomenclature is semantically false. He ought to warn of "US Style inflation", not "Weimar Style", eh?

Posted by: Walter | May 9 2020 14:12 utc | 148

All I want to know is "where is my relief check that the Donald promised me?" 'Can't have my capitalism without it.

Posted by: Robert Shule | May 9 2020 14:13 utc | 149

Robert Shule | May 9 2020 14:13 utc | 150 You too? Still waiting...

Posted by: Walter | May 9 2020 14:17 utc | 150

Just a note of clarification. The University of Washington study referenced above gives a 1.3% (with a 95% Confidence interval of 0.6-2.1%) This is the % mortality rate of C 19 of those with symptoms. Other studies, such as the Stanford Univ and the University of Bonn and one in New York are giving % of deaths as a % of those who test +ve for C 19 antibodies, i.e. your body was exposed and breached and reacted to some level of the virus (which of course includes A-symptomatic or low symptomatic cases.) these 3 studies all give well under 0.5% mortality. I take the point that e.g. flu also exhibits Asymptomatic cases . If the % of people who are asymptomatic is truly 20% then 1.3% becomes more like 1.1% but the 3 other 3 studies mentioned (using antibody testing) are lass than half that. All the data is not all in and we don´t have the full story yet but all these studies are starting to give us the picture.
Also these percentages are not the whole story because if far more or far less people actually catch C-19 than flu then this should factored in when comparing the overall impact of C -19 with the flu. Also we have never reacted with such extreme measures to ordinary flu and these measures have surely impacted the data.

Posted by: intp1 | May 9 2020 14:29 utc | 151

@fairleft #147
There is no "side" to the mortality issue.

The question is values.

You apparently think that 0.1% mortality for those under 50 is fine - I do not.

I do not, however, see any visible effort to enact those policies which clearly do have an impact on nCOV mortality, which also have much less impact on the overall economy.

Thus I'm not "pro-lockdown" either.

This is the real world, not a digital/binary one. There are many degrees of choices/actions between lockdown and no-lockdown.

Posted by: c1ue | May 9 2020 14:30 utc | 152

@Walter #149
Agreed, we're all in this whatever we believe.

What I will ask you to think about is:

Will the oligarchy benefit or lose more from hyperinflation?
This is a decent rule of thumb when considering any policy decisions by this country (and many more).

On the one hand, the oligarchy already are the closest to the money emissions trough of the Federal Reserve. They also own most of the "hard" assets - production, real estate, patents etc.

On the other hand, they also own most of the actual cash/liquid currency. The ability to monetize the assets is going to be problematic in hyperinflation scenarios (nobody will be able to afford rent, nobody will be able to afford to buy anything).

Hyperinflation is also generally really bad for staying in power - Weimar got booted in favor of Hitler. Mugabe stayed in power because he was supported by the Army, plus Zimbabwe was mostly subsistence farming at the time anyway. Hyperinflations in South and Central America have never ended well for the regimes in power at the time - and were generally ended by pegging to the USD.

I actually see hyperinflation as helping most Americans by devaluing their debt - which is why we won't see hyperinflation in this country.

Posted by: c1ue | May 9 2020 14:40 utc | 153

@vk #142
I have not been "anti-lockdown" from the start.
I have, however, become extremely dubious of ongoing lockdowns as opposed to other measures like contact tracing/quarantines or protective lockdowns of at-risk populations as opposed to locking down the entire country.
Your characterization is false.
Yes, those who minimize the health impact of nCOV are deluded or deliberately misunderstanding the data.
Yes, the notion that the lockdown kills more people than nCOV is also false.
But this doesn't mean that lockdowns, particularly lockdowns until there's a vaccine, are the best measure.
South Korea and Singapore have now shown that nCOV can/will re-erupt.
A lockdown for 12-18 months is literally unsustainable in Western, service based economies.
The CARES act plus stimulus measures won't be sufficient to tide people over the minimum 12-18 months before a vaccine might be available for mass use.
A CARES act 2 won't help the small business owners, won't get people's hair cut, won't get the meat processed or the fields harvested, won't get restaurants/schools back to normal, won't help all the non-food, non-hardware store owners, won't help the home repair/car repair/post office/mass transit systems.
The lack of a coherent plan bridging between the initial lockdowns and the onset of the vaccine is what I am pointing at as the problem.

Posted by: c1ue | May 9 2020 14:48 utc | 154

Mark @ 101, I agree we should be celebrating, but not for the drawn out catastrophe still unfolding in the US; it is far too soon for that. We should be celebrating the countries that have successfully dealt with the pandemic and perhaps not being so hard on those that have been unsuccessful so far. We can soberly address the reasons for both, and strive to use what we are learning -- and we are learning a lot from both examples. My mother's best friend had a great story to help with seemingly insurmountable problems. Visualize a room piled full of eggs. You enter with cartons. It's a huge fragile mess if you get it wrong. You are tempted to shut the door and go away.

You don't. You start carefully putting eggs in cartons and stacking them in one corner. And to keep your spirits up, you look not at the huge pile that still awaits, but at the orderly pile of cartons that is slowly but surely growing. So as not to lose hope and despair, you concentrate on the difference you are making, and that helps you to keep going.

I would suggest, less rightful indignation against the clear and apparent failures. And more positive examples of the successes. We do need both, but we need the latter more.

Posted by: juliania | May 9 2020 14:51 utc | 155

A User@103
It looks like a very clear question of class to me, with the 'racial' differences being obviously connected to the disadvantages suffered by recent immigrants.

An interesting figure from Toronto, where there are three basic categories of old peoples homes, municipally run, run by non profit cooperatives and corporations and private, for profit, homes. Mortality in the latter, for profit group is twice that in non-profits and four times that in the municipal homes.
The private, for profit sector really began to grow quickly under the Tory "Common Sense Revolution" which ran from 1995 to 2002. Essentially they privatised everything that they could and, to sweeten the pill, they simultaneously de-regulated, loosening the conditions under which licenses for these homes could be issued.
The current holocaust is one consequence, although to put it into perspective, I believe that you need to examine mortality rates in these places since privatisation-my guess is that every winter mini epidemics spread through these places and vacancies open up. Private for profit 'care homes' are a form of cannibalism and part of an end of life system designed to strip the elderly of what remains of their life savings, before their relatives can lay hands on it.
The second consequence of the Common Sense Revolution is that Harris, having been dumped by the voters in 2002 is now the well paid CEO of the largest chain of for profit 'seniors' homes in Ontario.

Posted by: bevin | May 9 2020 14:56 utc | 156

b @ 111 - thank you so much for this information. It seems we are getting back some important aspects of the Fourth Estate in the US. The AP did its job in revealing this news, and I praise Trump for acting upon it as well. This is good news, even if at a late stage in these aweful events! I hadn't seen your posts when I entered my last one, but thanks also for doing your housekeeping here. Your points about opening too soon are well taken. I was watching an excellent review on events in native areas of northern New Mexico. We are seeing very difficult times for those communities which at best have been struggling with a broken economy, and now find themselves particularly hard hit by the virus.

If we are not yet safe to open up such places, they need more government help, which must be redirected from the giveaways to the corporate behemoths. This is about families, our first citizens.

Posted by: juliania | May 9 2020 15:05 utc | 157

@ >"I actually see hyperinflation as helping most Americans by devaluing their debt - which is why we won't see hyperinflation in this country."

(Posted by: c1ue | May 9 2020 14:40 utc | 154)

Pretty much agree, except, we'll see... I am not so sure that "they" have enough control to serve their own interests... But the idea that most US persons might, in the long term, benefit seems solid... Certainly in the admittedly different German experience the long run has benefited the Germans. I tend to agree with Keiser and his fellows, one way or another it is just beginning, and I personally see as precautionary and worthwhile considerable caution, both with disease and finance...ahemmm. Stuff does happen.

Your 153 I agree with entirely.

What "they" do and what they say do not align very well...

Posted by: Walter | May 9 2020 15:06 utc | 158

Posted by: c1ue | May 9 2020 14:30 utc | 153

"You apparently think that 0.1% mortality for those under 50 is fine - I do not."

How the h#ll did you get that as my 'apparently' (love that word) position? Why would any same person think that is 'fine'? In any case, the overall infection mortality rate is very roughly 0.2% to 0.4% and that is very very heavily concentrated among the elderly, especially the very elderly, and folks with several specific co-morbidities. I wish the authorities didn't force me to guess, but surely for healthy under-50s the IFR has to be at the very worst 0.01%.

Anyway, sorry for the peace offering. You have a need to fight and agreement 'apparently' makes you uncomfortable.

Posted by: fairleft | May 9 2020 15:08 utc | 160

Posted by: Mina | May 9 2020 12:16 utc | 127

Apart from the anti-EU article you quote, this other article on Politico by John Lichfield, long time Paris correspondent, gives the French at least a clean bill of health.

https://www.politico.eu/article/coronavirus-frances-strange-defeat/

Posted by: Laguerre | May 9 2020 15:13 utc | 161

@ 96 yeah, right.... thanks for the overview and your views in general on all this... after reading all the comments in the thread, fairleft drew my attention to @ 81 vietnam vets comments... i think he is saying the same thing as you basically... the usa fucked up essentially... i know a lot of people don't like to hear this and will look for another answer to conclude why the numbers are so different in countries, but basic neglect seems to be at the root of it. @ 158 bevins comments on the homes - privatized or not is quite interesting as well..

@ 104 jen... thanks for your comments.. i agree other factors like pollution and etc are at play, but i do tend to believe certain countries acted more aggressively to address the concern then others.. i think that might be the most important factor.. it is ironic that canada and the usa had time to set in motion some protective measures - screening international travellers and requiring they self isolate for 14 days, but that it appears they didn't.. i may be premature in concluding anything here, but it looks like negligence on the part of the leadership to me.. that and the attention to details surrounding the health care business, workers and etc - being a very important focal point that is set up differently in different countries.. just how much privatization and how big the profit motive and etc. etc. - all seem to feed into this..

@ 126 walter... thanks wally... always interesting..

@ 159 juliania.. nice story.. thanks!!

@ 133 montreal / @ 138 petri... avaaz.. i am sticking with my original comment at pl's... intel agency - probably israel... regardless the surface look seems to tell the story on the doctor and the women from avaaz... i doubt there is any more on that, but maybe...

Posted by: james | May 9 2020 15:27 utc | 162

Wouldn't it be possible now to compare total deaths in NYC and NY state with total deaths from the same months in the past? How many deaths total happened in March 2020 compared to March 2010, for example? Seems like it would be useful to average total deaths by month for every month and year since records have been kept to gauge excess deaths for any given month, since it appears ncov is being slapped on every death certificate, often without evidence of infection, for a variety of reasons. Could even screen out certain types of deaths -- homicide, accidents car wrecks, etc. -- for a better idea of excess deaths due to disease.

Posted by: j. casey | May 9 2020 15:42 utc | 163

@j.casey

The Financial Times is doing that on this freely accessible page (scroll down)

Posted by: b | May 9 2020 15:55 utc | 164

@27 -- ToivoS | May 8 2020 21:13 utc

"Getting back to the antivaer's I believe they are incorrect at the public health level, but they do keep on noting that vaccinations do have complications amounting to about 1 case per 100,000. For who experience those complications that is sad, but in terms of public health it is very, very minor to who, for example, experienced polio, which was a major fear and real threat in my youth."

The key point is the underlying science -- Pareto's 80:20 principle. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pareto_principle )

100% vaccination rate is an ideology-based belief system pandered to by the commercial market of vested interests and endorsed by lazy/influenced/corrupt public health policy officials. What is needed is a 'win-win' where (distribution issues aside) those with high risk of injury from vaccinations (and my past research suggested a lot of risk was not from each individual vaccination per se, but more so from the cheap and nasty combination versions for affordable mass distribution use -- i.e. the poor) and those who have conscientious objections can be prioritized to form the 20% non-vaccinated cohort. That is where the science and public policy needs to be focused, imo.

The $$$'s involved in vaccination injury are not trivial -- and the percentages going to lawyers indicates another lucrative aspect of the current system. And the rates of injury of children has escalated in recent years. This is the top priority, imo -- not shutting down the world economy so a 70+ y.o. cohort can live on past their used by date -- basically the tail end of the Boomer class that has made it their life style mission since the 60-70's onward to exhaust the planet's natural resources (i.e. natural forests and wildlife) so that zoonotic disease and coronavirus type pandemics risks are increased. (and btw, I'm soon to in that age group myself).

HRSA Data & Statistics (updated 2019) - Awards Paid FY 1989-2019 -- only FY 2017-2019 (p.9) image attached with totals.
https://www.hrsa.gov/sites/default/files/hrsa/vaccine-compensation/data/monthly-stats-february-2019.pdf

Posted by: imo | May 9 2020 15:59 utc | 165

I'm reminded in these discussions now of the difference between Newton and Kepler as far as my faint collegiate memory of the more accurate astronomical charts given by Kepler as he himself had more accurate instruments than Newton or even Galileo to rely upon. What Kepler discovered was that the planetary orbits around the sun aren't completely circular but are in fact, due to outside influences, elliptical. That is, there are two centers in an ellipse, while only one in a circle.

I bring this up to say that what I see here are two 'centers' vying for dominance, so what we in our conversations are trying to sort out is the power of influence of each. There is the corporate based economy, which in the US has had overwhelming dominance for so long that it is hard to see the importance of anything else. Yet in fact other nations outside the west have fared better because they didn't have the same 'center' to their 'economies' (using that word based on the original greek sense of 'home-building').

The other center, which is or has been the original, historical center of human existence, is family.

No, indeed no! We have to say this, corporations are NOT people. Governments are not corporations. It's 'of the people, for the people, by the people'! It's 'we the people'.

The main center of the solar system is still the sun. The main center of government is the people. The main order of 'business' for the nation is the welfare of the people.

Something good has to come out of all of this; at the bottom of Pandora's box, and boy do we need to empty that box! --

hope

Posted by: juliania | May 9 2020 16:03 utc | 166

Posted by: vk | May 9 2020 13:57 utc | 146

Besides China, Cuba and Vietnam (and, maybe, South Korea... maybe), which country "flattened the curve"? Please, give me the data. Give your source.

Not sure what curve is implied, but lets say that 'the curve' is the one that tracks the number of active cases.
Iceland and Faroe Islands not just flattened, but squashed the curve.
A few Canadian provinces managed to flatten the curve - BC for example. Manitoba, New Brunswick and Newfoundland squashed it. Nunavut does not have any cases whatsoever.
Unfortunately Quebec and Ontario are making up for all of them: The number of deaths in Quebec is higher than the number of total cases in BC.

Posted by: hopehely | May 9 2020 16:09 utc | 167

Posted by: juliania | May 9 2020 16:03 utc | 166

Something good has to come out of all of this

Oh, yeah. No more handshakes. No more obligatory eye contacts, fake service smiles and exchanges of inane pleasantries.
The end of the tyranny of extroverts.

Posted by: hopehely | May 9 2020 16:19 utc | 168

Thanks b @ 164.

Going to the link at the Financial Times, the charts are extremely helpful, explanations also:

"... London has seen overall deaths more than double, and New York City’s total death numbers since mid March are more than four times the norm..."

The article observes that the increases indicate that the virus deaths are being very much undercounted. Which to me means we are not seeing figures that would warrant 'back to normal' policies in many western regions.

[I received a warning about copying the article; I hope it is permitted to use a small extract - if not, please delete.] 

Posted by: juliania | May 9 2020 16:25 utc | 169


re AVAAZ

This is an organization that generally advocates for progressive causes via online petitions (e.g., climate change, Guantanamo, US withdrawal from Iraq, threatened species), at least that's what it seemed to be. I got onto their mailing list by signing on to some of these ~13 years ago. At some point, like other such organizations (HRW, MSF) they got co-opted by the western establishment and began including regime change into the mix, first in Libya and then in Syria.

Posted by: farm ecologist | May 9 2020 17:10 utc | 170

@ 168 hopehely... lol... i like that - the end of the tyranny of extroverts!

@ 170 farm ecologist... that is the rub isn't it? a nice front - advocating for progressive causes via online petitions and etc... i think people need to be more discerning and critically minded when seeing these sorts of fronts... not all of them will be a con, but most of the ones i have seen are - avaaz and change.org is another one that comes to mind... typically you don't see where the funding comes from... that is one tip off right there... i don't know that they got co-opted so much as they were set up with this design in mind - preying on naive people essentially...

Posted by: james | May 9 2020 17:35 utc | 171

Walter @130

That is why I cringe whenever I hear people saying "When things get back to normal..."

There will be no "getting back to normal". The empire's market economy had already run out of steam more than a decade ago and all growth since then has been nothing more than accounting gimmicks and financial masturbation. There is nothing to act as a driver to restart growth. Our host is correct to call what we are in now "The Greater Depression", as this one is going to settle in for the long haul. All of the economic excitement for at least the next decade will be in the "Global South", which of course includes China. The US will not be going back to the Moon "to stay this time", if at all, and it is unlikely that the US will ever build another huge aircraft carrier. It is starting to even look unlikely that the US will ever upgrade its Internet and telecommunications infrastructure beyond the crappy patchwork mess that it has today. The days are numbered for America's aerospace industry and the country doesn't even have any significant amount of STEM talent coming up through the education pipeline.

No, the game is over for the empire. We are facing decades of decline to a global backwater, and that is if we are lucky and the empire consents to going gently into its good night rather than nuking the planet.

Posted by: William Gruff | May 9 2020 17:43 utc | 172

Gruffy--
"No, the game is over for the empire. We are facing decades of decline to a global backwater, and that is if we are lucky and the empire consents to going gently into its good night rather than nuking the planet."

To prevent that scenario which looks inevitable to me the Empire will have to give up on the idea of Empire and join the rest of the world in the 21st century. Hook up with the BRI and forget this full spectrum dominance nuttiness. As a Canadian I strognly wish that Canada would join the BRI but I think we will keep our canoe tied to the Titanic.

Posted by: arby | May 9 2020 18:01 utc | 173

arby @173

That's my hope as well, but the American empire is a fading bully with its foot on the world's neck. The bully fears that if it lets its victims up then it will be payback time and they will beat up on the now enfeebled bully. Terrified of that karma, the empire is afraid to let go. The thought of having to interact with the other peoples of the world as equals instead of the boss has the US petrified.

This is silly, of course, because even peoples who have been severely abused by the US like the Iraqis and Syrians would very much rather see America chill out, go sane, and become genuinely friendly rather than get revenge. Unlike what Americans imagine, the rest of the world is not out to "get them". I just hope the Russians with their genius diplomacy can smooth over the transition long enough for Americans to see that.

Posted by: William Gruff | May 9 2020 18:32 utc | 174

William Gruff | May 9 2020 17:43 utc | 172

Yes, that's the burned-in pattern, I agree. But there is the near inevitable entrance into "our" space a cathodic force, if you will, such that regional divisions will make formal agreement with the natural economic relations. California, for example with China and Russia and Asia generally.

It probably depends on how the cookie crumbles, Friend.

Posted by: Walter | May 9 2020 19:36 utc | 175

to Posted by: b | May 9 2020 9:59 utc | 119 and Posted by: ADKC | May 9 2020 9:49 utc | 118

Some people say (not b) "The idea that the origin of Covid-19 was man made in a lab have been debunked", but this is not the case, and apart from some published research that show people in the I.V. of Wuhan were busy building chimeric coronavirus with GOF; the project granted by the NIH that ADKC sent the link says, in the "Project Information" page:

"We will use S protein sequence data, infectious clone technology, in vitro and in vivo infection experiments and analysis of receptor binding to test the hypothesis that % divergence thresholds in S protein sequences predict spillover potential"

link

If I have understood enough well what this means, for me they are going to make edition and changes in the genome of the coronavirus (using "infectious clone tehcnology"), they will use "in vitro and in vivo infections" (everyone knows "in vivo" is a much more dangerous approach), and they will "test the hypothesis that % divergence thresholds in S protein sequences predict spillover potential", for me this means they will alter the S protein sequence to see if these changes can have a "spillover potencial"; and that means a GOF strategy to "see what happens" when you alter the protein that make easy for the virus to infect humans. Once you know what alterations give a very infectious virus, you can predict future pandemics when it appears in natural form.

For me all the approach is delirant: they want to make many changes in the genome in order to define an "space of structures" that provide infectious characteristics to the coronavirus; to achieve this I suppone they need to do many many changes looking always for a more infectious strain, and you have to do it many times in order to achieve this "phase space" of possible infectious alterations of the S protein, so you can have a data base to compare in the case of natural occurence, and to know in advance if this particular strain could be, or not, very infectious for humans.

It is just crazy!, or only is crazy for me?

What I see is that after the prohibition of the GOF research in USA, they outsource them to China, all with very ethical purposes, it is NOT a conspiracy, in fact they were trying to avoid a pandemic and look for vaccines, all is OK, but anyway, as Nassim Taleb warns many times, the GMO world is a very very risky business with big "fat tails" probabilities of catastrophic results (ruin).

Anyway this is only the tip of the iceberg, to change the genome of infectious, dangerous or normal virus is a routine in hundreds if not thousands of labs aound the world (for vaccines, methods of diagnosis, nano-materials, etc...), and we believe all of this is "safe" and nothing could happens at all, but as Nassim Taleb says GMO's are much more dangerous than a nuclear accident, because thanks to globallization and air planes, all the world, all the humanity, is connected in few days, and that could means "ruin".

We, as civilization, have not very good prospect for the future

Cheers

Posted by: DFC | May 9 2020 20:45 utc | 176

@do 20

In 2013 my daughter was killed by a drunk driver in South Dakota. What does this have to do with COVID?

I'm a statistician. I dug into DUI death statistics for South Dakota and all neighboring states. The neighbors all had much higher DUI death rates than South Dakota. It turned out South Dakota didn't bother to track any DUI deaths on Indian reservations, while neighboring states made considerable effort to do so. State officials confirmed this.

I believe this was an intentional, racist policy of the right-wing libertarian hacks that run that shithole state. It made the state look good and entitled it to federal funds. Indeed, South Dakota has been in the top 5 In terms of federal money as a percentage of the state budget. They have no income tax and are a tax Haven for post box corporations.

They are cooking their COVID death numbers. South Dakota is third world. Stay away!

Posted by: Upstater | May 9 2020 20:51 utc | 177

DFC wrote:
What I see is that after the prohibition of the GOF research in USA, they outsource them to China, all with very ethical purposes, it is NOT a conspiracy, in fact they were trying to avoid a pandemic and look for vaccines,
____________________________________________________
I think this is correct and your analysis that this was an accident waiting to happen is also correct, but that still doesn't mean it was or was not natural. However, It should be a wake up call as to how dangerous these lab experiments potentially could be.

Posted by: jinn | May 9 2020 21:02 utc | 178

Yeah,Right @ 129:

Your reference to the Global Economic Security Index which only considers a more narrow range of criteria to determine countries' preparedness, most of which probably looked at paper statistical information of hospital capacities as in numbers of hospial beds per 100,000 people spread across a country, not considering internal disparities (such as availability of hospital beds to people in rural or poor areas) and not taking into account numbers of healthcare workers such as nurses or hospital support staff needed in hospitals, was not what I was going by.

Posted by: Jen | May 9 2020 21:32 utc | 179

About "flatten the curve" -

The USA has flattened the curve. Period. End of story.

Here's the data on weekly hospital admissions for COVID-19 in the USA -

Link to https://gis.cdc.gov/grasp/COVIDNet/COVID19_3.html

Click on "Display by" in the upper left hand corner, select "Weekly Rate".

On the right in the Age Selection box, turn off all of the various age brackets and turn on "Overall".

See the curve? It's FLAT for the last 4 weeks.

Posted by: Don Wills | May 9 2020 22:10 utc | 180

..."@all -

Had to deletes some 30 or so comments on this thread.

Besides the known trolls (aka donkeytale) there were like 20+ which came from first time posters all with similar (anti-lockdown, anti-vaxxer) themes.

Someone is investing real money into those disinformation campaigns.

Posted by: b | May 9 2020 7:36 utc | 110"...

Well, Bernard. You cut me off. I know you will read this response and not post on your site. Well and fine. You are behaving just like Youtube, and warzone.com who have banned me. Like them, you wish to ban people you disagree with. Your audience dis agrees with you at times, and that what adds to the discussion. If your identified trolls come, fine, accept that as a compliment. Let your audience deal with them, with out closing them out. You would not want to be closed out either by the powers that be. I came to your site looking for superior discussion, but you shut it down, "trolls" again, look everyone I shut them out. This banning is just what the powers that be want, you behaving just as they do! They relish in seeing dissent blocked and you enabled. If you are respectable you can tell me to my face, and reply to my email address that you can see! So go it man and reply. Have a pleasant weekend sir,

Taffyboy.

Posted by: Taffyboy | May 9 2020 22:33 utc | 181

@Caliman | May 8 2020 19:56 utc | 14

As long as we don't exceed the carrying capacity of the medical system locally (and from NYC, it appears those fears were overblown)

The early fears weren't overblown. The higher predictions didn't happen BECAUSE of the lockdowns and the social-distancing measures (the Hammer part of Thomas Pueyo's recipe, The Hammer and the Dance -- which is basically what China did, but translated to Americanese).


We cannot have a dead economy for more than a year. No nation can and all nations will therefore be opening up.

Actually, the U.S. survived the Great Depression, and that was approximately a decade long.

But I agree somewhat. This time around, if the lockdowns last, a huge percentage of the U.S. population will fall into the Third World.


Let's take our Vitamin A, C, D, and Zinc, and let's get back to work.

This is where I disagree. Suppose the people take your advice and they return to work -- and the infection rate explodes again? Then another lockdown will happen. Whether it's official or unofficial, people will refuse to gather. And then maybe another lockdown a few months later, and another, causing the economy to seriously crash and burn.

Better to hammer the coronavirus once, then handle the small cases as they arise (the "dance" part of Pueyo's recipe). Of course, this assumes the U.S. can do mass testing, perhaps a rash assumption.

Posted by: Cyril | May 10 2020 0:52 utc | 182

@Caliman | May 8 2020 19:56 utc | 14

I intended to respond to the point below but I forgot ...

We are already probably somewhere between 5% and 25% true infection rates across the country depending on location (in cities). This needs to go up to 50 to 60% over the next six months and before the next cold season.

In other words, you want herd immunity. Achieving that would kill a lot of people. Worse, it might not work; it certainly didn't succeed against the 1918 Kansas Flu (which for some reason is widely known as the Spanish Flu, though it wasn't Spain's fault).

The deadly Kansas Flu came in waves. According to historians, the first wave's "mortality rates were similar to seasonal flu". After the first wave, you would imagine that people would have lots of herd immunity. In fact,

Reported cases of Spanish flu dropped off over the summer of 1918, and there was hope at the beginning of August that the virus had run its course.

However, a few months later came the second wave, and it was a killer.

In the United States alone, 195,000 Americans died from the Spanish flu in just the month of October.

Then in January 1919 came a third wave, which was just as lethal as the second. Fortunately, the Great War had ended, limiting the movement of troops, so fewer people died.

In total,

The [three waves] infected 500 million people worldwide and killed an estimated 20 million to 50 million victims--that’s more than all of the soldiers and civilians killed during World War I combined.

------

Back to the present. Perhaps you're thinking that mutations usually make viruses less deadly, so the U.S. should take a chance on Covid-19 and try for herd immunity. However, that would be playing with fire.

It's true that for an individual virus, a mutation is likely to make a descendent less deadly. However, the more people who are infected, the more billions and trillions of mutation chances the virus would have -- to go around existing immunities and become deadly once more. That is why the Kansas Flu arrived in three waves. Not one, not two, but three waves.

That is what you risk in trying for herd immunity for hundreds of millions of Americans.

Posted by: Cyril | May 10 2020 2:40 utc | 183

@dp | May 8 2020 20:36 utc | 18

south dakota (no lockdown) population 880,000 death by virus 31
north dakota (lockdown) population 760,000 death by virus 31

South Dakota might not have an official lockdown (I don't know), but state officials have asked the populace to stay home. And staying home is apparently what they are doing. (Remember, the empty street you're seeing on that web page is in downtown Sioux Falls, SD's largest city.) So SD may as well have an official lockdown.

As for the low fatality numbers, (1) both ND and SD are widely spread out, and (2) it is still early.

Posted by: Cyril | May 10 2020 3:20 utc | 184

@ 183 taffyboy... well your post is up... how do you explain it?? you have posted at moa regularly for some time... perhaps some of the posts b deleted were in the haste of the moment? hard to know.. at any rate, continue to post! i don't recall reading anything you have written that was in any way offensive... diversity of viewpoints is a good thing too...

Posted by: james | May 10 2020 3:49 utc | 185

The question remains “what to do as a US citizen” ??
Whether we like it or not, we are stuck with the nutters. How do you deal with these weaker links?

Posted by: Amir | May 10 2020 7:04 utc | 186

@Caliman | May 8 2020 19:56 utc | 14

Further thoughts on the same passage of yours.

We are already probably somewhere between 5% and 25% true infection rates across the country depending on location (in cities). This needs to go up to 50 to 60% over the next six months and before the next cold season.

You're proposing to infect half of all Americans, or 150 million people, in a seriously misguided attempt at herd immunity. I can't emphasize the following enough: allowing the coronavirus to infect so many people is extremely irresponsible.

You must not -- repeat, NOT -- allow a mutable and extremely contagious virus to reproduce itself in a hundred million people! That gives it too many chances to evolve to deadliness. The last time a virus infected on the order of a hundred million people, the world got the Kansas/Spanish Flu in 1918, which may have killed 50 million.

The point is that the Kansas Flu came in waves. The second and third waves were so deadly because the first wave infected so many people, giving the contagion far too many opportunities to mutate.

Therefore, in the fight against Covid-19, herd immunity would be the last thing you should try for, when a hundred million people are involved. I am nervous about Sweden's attempt at herd immunity for 10 million people and even more worried that the UK's 66 million may be backsliding on their lockdown. If half of the U.S.'s population gets infected, I expect some dire results. This is obvious and so serious that I think the media is criminally negligent to overlook it.

Posted by: Cyril | May 10 2020 9:08 utc | 187

Cyril #183

That is what you risk in trying for herd immunity for hundreds of millions of Americans.

YES to that, not only mega mutations but mega death as well. AND mega injured people for decades after.
PLUS if the rest of the world sees this unfolding then don't expect a visa or aircraft landing rights in any other country for three years or so. Exporting products to other countries might be problematic too.

Caliman's proposal could be a game stopper for the USA. Mind you the rest of the world will breath a huge sigh of relief.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | May 10 2020 10:43 utc | 188

DFC #176

We, as civilization, have not very good prospect for the future

I might agree with that 'is this crazy or am I crazy' question you pose DFC. Take a look at the paper - COVID-19 Pandemic: Its Origin, Implications and Treatments author Peter K. Law. It is open access/ download as pdf and pretty solid reading but it does get to a well reasoned essence.

I say we need a people's 'crime against humanity commission'. Perhaps something along the lines of the Bertrand Russel War Crimes Commission on the war against Vietnam by the USA.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | May 10 2020 10:58 utc | 189

DFC @176: "What I see is that after the prohibition of the GOF research in USA, they outsource them to China, all with very ethical purposes, it is NOT a conspiracy, in fact they were trying to avoid a pandemic and look for vaccines, all is OK..."

Sure, doubtless most, or even all, of the scientists and techs involved have the best of intentions. But what about when some psycho gangsters get their blood-stained hands on some of the test samples? You know the kind of gangsters I am talking about; the "We lie, we cheat, we steal" kinds who kidnap humans to torture for the enjoyment of Bloody Gina in their "black site" gangster hideouts. These gangsters can get US State Department diplomatic clearance to any facility they want, so you cannot keep these chimera germs out of their hands. What happens then?

Of course, we all know what happens then because we are living it.

Posted by: William Gruff | May 10 2020 13:21 utc | 190

A typical example of an ongoing condition of exceptionalism>

"South Dakota governor gives Native American tribes 48 hours to remove checkpoints which aim to bar non-essential visitors entering"

(itz a pizzing contest...wanna bet on the outcome? Bet on the Red Indians...)

( tinyurl[dot]com/yb7jawb6

It is possibly note-worthy that a state of exceptionalism exists when a thing is true and false, legal and illegal, and so on.

The revolutionary inflection point of History is a state of exceptionalism - this is how you recognize that it's a revolutionary moment.

It remains, of course, to observe how the revolution goes...further into fascism or, ah, the other way, ahemmm.

Posted by: Walter | May 10 2020 14:06 utc | 191


Cyril wrote:

The point is that the Kansas Flu came in waves. The second and third waves were so deadly because the first wave infected so many people, giving the contagion far too many opportunities to mutate.
___________________________________________________
That may likely be true, but we do not know for sure. The original SARS was stopped dead in its tracks. Who knows what it may have become if it had been allowed to roam free and mutate.

One implication of allowing the virus to mutate is that earlier infections may not confer immunity to later mutations.

Another horrific possibility is that the victims of the first wave of 1918 virus were mostly the old and the immune compromised. The more deadly second and third wave in that pandemic were more deadly to the those who you would expect to have the strongest immune systems, people aged 20-40.

Posted by: jinn | May 10 2020 14:40 utc | 192

@jinn | May 10 2020 14:40 utc | 192


The point is that the Kansas Flu came in waves. The second and third waves were so deadly because the first wave infected so many people, giving the contagion far too many opportunities to mutate.

That may likely be true, but we do not know for sure. The original SARS was stopped dead in its tracks. Who knows what it may have become if it had been allowed to roam free and mutate.

Note that the 1918 Kansas Flu came in three waves. That is, lethal mutations happened twice. If there were only two waves (i.e. just a single lethal variant), I might think a killer second wave would be unlikely for a virus. However, another bad mutation occurred to cause the lethal third wave of the Kansas Flu, which probably means that Covid-19 won't continue to be relatively tame when a hundred million people get infected.

For such an enormous population, herd immunity is a very bad idea.


One implication of allowing the virus to mutate is that earlier infections may not confer immunity to later mutations.

Right.


Another horrific possibility is that the victims of the first wave of 1918 virus were mostly the old and the immune compromised. The more deadly second and third wave in that pandemic were more deadly to the those who you would expect to have the strongest immune systems, people aged 20-40.

Indeed.

Posted by: Cyril | May 10 2020 16:41 utc | 193

Upstater,
Sorry for your loss, if that can mean anything.

Posted by: Mina | May 10 2020 16:58 utc | 194

Thanks Pht for your support for Judith Mikovits. I know only of her research from Researchgate, which references approximately 100 papers. With the exception of the XMRV paper, none have been challenged. To say she "faked" her research, considering its depth and breadth is a significant distortion. Also, thanks for bringing up the fact that the Whittemores were financializing XMRV with a test kit - an activity she knew nothing about and shut down immediately as the research was nowhere near a state to bring such a product to market. Also, she stepped on the third rail in scientific literature - the vaccine disputes, which have been characterized as yes vaccine or no vaccine, rather than safe, well tested vaccines - with trials beginning with animal and then moving to humans, preferably not in third world countries wherein informed consent requirements are often skirted and wherein abreactions can be pushed under the table, and outcome guidelines changed in midstream.

Finally, I would note that as one watches the Trump dialogues on COVID 19, our CDC has been subverted to politics - Birx and Fauci should have risen from their chairs instantly and loudly challenging Trump's suggestion to the nation that Chlorox be injected as a treatment option. The lag in commentary was deafening. A level of personal lack of ethics and honesty far beyond any of the accusations following Judith Mikovits, since such an action would be lethal.

Posted by: abierno | May 10 2020 18:39 utc | 195

Today I'd just like to say that it's about time you implemented a responsive/mobile version of this site.
Scrolling horizontally to read every line of your brilliant articles is useless pain and suffering you're inflicting on your loyal readership. Please stop that nonsense. We're in 2020.

Posted by: Melkiades | May 11 2020 3:59 utc | 196

I am all for massive jobs programs that put people to work performing tasks that are useful to society. The overriding problem, however, is that such programs will require, in many instances, that people work in close physical proximity with one another. Social distancing and building or servicing almost anything are mutually exclusive. A partial way out of of the conundrum would be regular testing of potential and actual workers for Covid infection and/or antibodies, but many people would necessarily be excluded from such work. I'm afraid that herd immunity is still the holy grail, and for that we will need a safe and effective vaccine.

Posted by: Rob | May 11 2020 16:50 utc | 197

From available evidence, Judith Mikovits clearly seems to be a deranged publicity seeker. Such people almost always attract followers who are of the paranoid type. Some of them have now made an appearance on MoA. Hopefully, they will get bored with intelligent discussions and will soon disappear.

Posted by: Rob | May 11 2020 17:09 utc | 198

Petri 14, I posted re. the vaping illness near the top. Your 2) i didn’t know about, good to list. took note of the wi link.

VAP19 was COV19, imho. My judgment might be off, but consider:

How the description / classification came about is quite alarming - atypical pneumonia or respiratory ‘upset’ with no infectious agent identified was immediately tied to X, something new that directly touches the lungs -> vaping.

Smoking tobacco / hash / other / was not considered as this common behavior is ancient and has ‘known’ medical consequences, it can’t suddenly lead to atypical pneumonia and/or a list of weird symptoms, incl. gastro, with elevated T cells.

So vaping it was, for those who vaped and became ill! Recall, 60 out of 2.7K hospitalised died. Now, either vaping did make ppl more vulnerable to COV19 (possible, no idea how) or there were many others (non-vapers) ill …The vapers were honed in on, because they used ‘some substance’ -> infectious disease tied to intake of X, personal habits, etc.

Idk how many ppl in the US vape, that might be a start to some facile indicative calculations - those who died were, more men than women, and imho ‘old’ for vapers, but that is from vague news reports, not a data-base. (Here vapers are young and 'cool' , over 50-s smoke cigs and joints, idk about California…)

Then late 2019 this category of ‘disease’ was ‘dropped’ - rather, was said to have died out. (see link)

OK, docs have interpretations, takes, which don’t pan out. Yet, analysing what went on is vital. NOT done even if the follow up is basic and costs close to nothing.

Contacting 500 vape-survivors and > sero analysis for COV antibodies would provide an interesting picture, good indications and possibly precious clues. (Yes, the tests may be poor, specially for false neg. much less or not at all for false pos.)

CDC link. EVALI, their acronym, unknown...

https://www.cdc.gov/tobacco/basic_information/e-cigarettes/severe-lung-disease.html


Posted by: Noirette | May 12 2020 19:02 utc | 199

south dakota (no lockdown) population 880,000 death by virus 31
north dakota (lockdown) population 760,000 death by virus 31
Posted by: dp | May 8 2020 20:36 utc | 18

I posted analogous numbers for Russia and Belarus. I live in a county that is less affected than Dakotas in spite of a lively industry of nursing homes (but on a small scale, without workers commuting by subway etc.). So now we have "partial opening", like construction work with maintained social distancing (observation from my window).

Posted by: Piotr Berman | May 13 2020 3:30 utc | 200

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