Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
July 17, 2020

Georgia's Gov. Kemp Faked The Numbers, Fights Mask Mandates And Hurts Its Economy

Yesterday I asked about Georgia's governor Brian Kemp:

What does Kemp think will happen in Georgia? Does he wish for more deaths in his state? Is it malice that is driving him? If not malice what is it?

The question is still open and there is now more data to find an answer.

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp Sues Atlanta to Block City From Enforcing Its Mask Mandate

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp is suing Atlanta to block the city from enforcing its mandate to wear a mask in public and other rules related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Kemp and Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr, in a suit filed in state court late Thursday in Atlanta, argue that Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms has overstepped her authority and must obey Kemp’s executive orders under state law.

“Governor Kemp must be allowed, as the chief executive of this state, to manage the public health emergency without Mayor Bottoms issuing void and unenforceable orders which only serve to confuse the public,” the lawsuit states.

Kemp on Wednesday clarified his executive orders to expressly block Atlanta and at least 14 other local governments across the state from requiring people to wear face coverings.

This is irresponsible. It is not Atlanta Mayor Lance Bottoms who is confusing the public. It is Kemp who is doing it. We do not just ask people to put on seat belts, we mandate it.

It was also Kemp who decided to put out fake numbers:

Georgia Massaged Virus Data to Reopen, Then Voided Mask Orders

Among the last U.S. states to lock down, Georgia in April was first to widely reopen, after just three weeks. Critics said the state misrepresented its data to justify the move, and they predicted disaster.
[T]he same week Kemp ordered the reopening, his administration began presenting data in a way that made the state appear healthier than it was, said Thomas Tsai, a professor at Harvard University’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

The technique involved backdating new cases to the time of first symptoms or taking a test, instead of reporting them as they were reported to the state, like Georgia had previously done -- and like most states do.
The effect -- as states were being told to predicate their reopenings on two weeks of declining case numbers -- was to artificially make Georgia’s trends look better. The state began adding new cases to past dates on its trend line, making current numbers both too low and incomplete, Tsai said.

“What’s deceptive is that they shave off the most recent two weeks,” he said. “If you look at the most recent two weeks, it’s always very low. It always looks artificially like a downward trend.”

Looking again at Georgia's data we can tell the moment Georgia did this.

Source: COVID Tracking Project - bigger

Around the beginning of June the new case numbers suddenly went to zero while a hump was added to the earlier data. The trick helped Kemp to reopen the state.

But the virus can not be tricked by fake accounting. Without sufficient countermeasures the epidemic will accelerate, more people will die from it no matter how many times Kemp massages the data.

A leaked White House document lists Georgia as one of the 18 states which are in a coronavirus "red zone" and should take serious measures to stop a further rise:

A document prepared for the White House Coronavirus Task Force but not publicized suggests more than a dozen states should revert to more stringent protective measures, limiting social gatherings to 10 people or fewer, closing bars and gyms and asking residents to wear masks at all times.

The document, dated July 14 and obtained by the Center for Public Integrity, says 18 states are in the “red zone” for COVID-19 cases, meaning they had more than 100 new cases per 100,000 population last week. Eleven states are in the “red zone” for test positivity, meaning more than 10 percent of diagnostic test results came back positive.

Source: Public Integrity - bigger

Kemp, some of the other governors, and Trump do not understand that it is not the virus that is now hurting the economy. The economic damage that is occurring now in Georgia and elsewhere is caused be the lack of countermeasures which are needed to be able to live with the virus while it continues to circulate.

We are still a year or so away from a good vaccine that can be produced in sufficient numbers. Until at least half of the population is somehow immunized against it we will have to live with it without allowing it to spread freely. Masks are the easiest and cheapest way to stop the virus from jumping from person to person.

The experts in the latest Grand Round video of the UCSF explain why that is the case. They also add a point that should reinforces the message. There are signs that countries with mask mandates had on average less serious cases. The reason is that the dose matters. We know from other viruses that an infection with a high dose of viruses will create more damage than one with a low dose. Masks may not stop all infections but the help to keep the virus dosage low.

Under the current circumstances wearing a mask, even a not perfect one, is the best thing one can do for ones health AND for the economy. It is high time for Kemp to learn that.

Posted by b on July 17, 2020 at 18:26 UTC | Permalink

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Really?? @Jul18 4:08 #111

One last round of drinks on me

The video Really links to is just more of the same disingenuous half-truths that we see constantly from the anti-lockdown/anti-mask fake libertarian propagandists.

Some of the comments on the video:

  • Emcee Squared

    At 3:39, this video claims coronavirus kills 400k per year, but the year is only halfway done and it's already killed over 600k, and this with all the lockdowns and social distancing measures.

    Secondly, the WHO estimates that the influenza virus kills between 290k - 600k a year, and this video goes with the higher figure, however, that statistic actually is for one whole year, since we have historical statistics about the flu virus.

    It's use of only half-a-years worth of data for the Coronavirus makes this otherwise convincing sounding video lose credibility.

  • Demetri Panayi

    Absolute nonsense. I could list so many inaccuracies but how about comparing a 6 month flu season to a three month Coronavirus under lockdown. Really pathetic right wing propaganda video masquerading as an info film. I hope most people don't listen and the damage this causes will be limited.

  • Flemming Hansen


    - the video exaggerates early predictions of deaths in Germany [and likely other places as well] to manipulate the audience into believing that the nature of the virus is much less harmful than it is;

    - the video falsely compares Covid-19 to the flu: IFR for the flu is 0,1 and the Covid-19 0,3 - 1,0 [which has been debunked many times];

    - the video falsely claims that lock-downs had no effect so they can falsely claim that the lower-than-predicted deaths mean that the virus is less deadly than it really is;

    - the video compares the pandemic/Covid to non-infectious diseases like Diabetes, Cancer and Cardiovascular;

    See more at his comment


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 18 2020 4:59 utc | 101

Correction @Jul18 4:59 114

Under Flemming Hansen, the bracketed note is in the wrong place. It should read:

- the video falsely compares Covid-19 to the flu [which has been debunked many times]: IFR for the flu is 0,1 and the Covid-19 0,3 - 1,0;


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 18 2020 5:03 utc | 102

B, why are you not mentioning the fact (or maybe even understand the fact) that nobody really cares about Covid in the States ?

The vaste majority of the deaths are native americans and blacks (by a 5 to 1 ratio !).
They also happen to be the poorest and least "important" people in the US.

So who cares...

Yeah, I know BLM etc etc is the new "in" thing now over there (but only in large democrat cities).
But I guess that'll fade out pretty soon too and no one will regret living in a less "colored america"...
And since those blacks are killed by a virus and not a white cop, it's nobody's fault and maybe even "God's plan" :)

PS: It is not my opinion, and frankly I don't really care. I am not american and I don't live there but I wouldn't be surprised at all if a lot of folks there think that way :(

Posted by: SysATI | Jul 18 2020 5:41 utc | 103

Posted by: Really?? | Jul 18 2020 2:55 utc | 89

One has to feel sorry for all those deluded doctors and nurses in surgury who wear masks for one to six hours during a surgical procedure breathing in bacteria spewed into their masks, infecting patients in the mistaken belief that they are protecting them.

No pro-mask contributor on this site has claimed masks are fool proof in preventing the spread of disease, but they obviously must help when properly worn and refreshed, otherwise the medical profession would not have been using them for the past century or so. I mean really, Really!! You make an interesting point with T-cell research, but otherwise, give us a break.

Posted by: Blue Dotterel | Jul 18 2020 7:03 utc | 104

@1 Blue Dottrell

I really must say that I do not undrstand why the mask wearing is such a problem for USAians.

I think there are two main reasons.

The first one is a kind of primitive libertarian anti-authoritarianism that says government = bad and anything legislated by a government is therefore illegitimate. Decades of propaganda by corporations and banks who oppose any rules that hinder their plunder have reinforced this view.

The second reason is that masks are associated by many Republicans and other right wingers as a symbol of the “woke” liberals they despise. Therefore, wearing a mask is equated with submission to their enemy’s will.

The mask issue is a metaphor for how dysfunctional the US has become.

A liberal version of this is the notion that anything Trump says or does is bad simply because Trump supports it and that anyone who dislikes Trump is a heroic figure worthy of deification (e.g. Bolton, Mueller and Bush Jr).

It is a failed state in the making.

Posted by: Daniel | Jul 18 2020 7:25 utc | 105

All those against the US's transformation from big brother to global bully should be happy about this US cold civil war; it diminishes its power and image.
Just don't be naive about the next bully coming up: CCP China. That club is also constituted out of power hungry big egos, not saints.

Let's have a multi polar world where no one can take over the whole planet, neither one country, one MNC or one person.
An association of independent free nations would be healthier and more representative: real multiculturalism / diversity.

Posted by: Antonym | Jul 18 2020 8:26 utc | 106

Posted by: james | Jul 18 2020 3:48 utc | 105 rsh - why wait for a perfect gov't?

Where did I say I was?

"you think there is such a thing as a perfect non gov't??"

Re-read what I said. I said explicitly that I don't think even anarchism is feasible given human nature.

"people can change that and eventually they will"

Good luck with that. As I said before, call me when your "new and improved" government comes into existence.

"what would you like to see come out of this?? no gov't, or a gov't that ideally serves the people??"

I think I answered that question, too, obviously.

"most all of the gov'ts now are mostly just rubber stamping a corporate agenda"

Agreed. Now tell me *exactly* how you intend to change that - or how *anyone* is going to change that.

I expect to hear crickets from here on out.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Jul 18 2020 8:34 utc | 107

Posted by: Grieved | Jul 18 2020 3:51 utc | 107 I wish you well.

Thanks. Anyone ever tell you you're much nicer than Really?? :-)

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Jul 18 2020 8:36 utc | 108

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 18 2020 4:59 utc | 114

Then Really?? wonders why I spew at him... You clearly show why. I don't have the patience to calmly list everything wrong with his nonsense - and on top of that I firmly believe he spouts that stuff because he's a paid troll - or a terminal case of cognitive dissonance who isn't the slightest bit interested in dealing with reality. The same applies to most, if not all, of the anti-maskers and pandemic-deniers.

The psychological basis for these attitudes has been discussed previously in articles I posted which specifically talked about cognitive dissonance as a major reason why people simply can't handle the facts. Cognitive dissonance is a *massive* phenomena that occurs in almost everyone at some point or another. It just depends on how much influence the negative emotion has on one's ability to reason, and that depends mostly on how much investment the person has in his fantasy reality. If your job, health, sex, life or whatever is on the line, there is massive incentive to take refuge in a made-up world where facts are no longer relevant.

People who think I'm making this up should check the Wikipedia reference on the subject. This stuff has been known since Leon Festinger's experiments in 1957. The Atlantic just had an article on it explicitly applying it to the pandemic:

The Role of Cognitive Dissonance in the Pandemic

The theory isn't the be-all and end-all in human psychology, obviously, but it explains a lot of the way people behave in common circumstances and especially in highly emotional matters.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Jul 18 2020 8:53 utc | 109

Posted by: Daniel | Jul 18 2020 7:25 utc | 118

I agree. Cognitive dissonance requires that one have conflicting viewpoints with opposing emotions. Obviously, the threat of the pandemic is one side of that. The other side is whatever belief system the individual happens to adhere to. For the anti-maskers and pandemic deniers, it's the attitudes you correctly identify.

You are especially correct when you refer to "primitive libertarianism." As I mentioned in an earlier post, there are people who formulate a coherent philosophy and there are people who are just a grab-bag of opinions. Also, as I indicated, "libertarianism" itself is an imprecise term that covers a wide range of political philosophies. A lot of people mistake it as just another word for "Republican." When you combine the two points I'm making, you get people with a significant amount of ignorant opinions on philosophy mixed with a grab-bag of notions about "freedom" or "Trump" or other matters. Put the two together, you get anti-maskers and pandemic-deniers.

As you say, a lot of this sounds like "Trump Derangement Syndrome" - the view that anything involving Trump is bad whether it's true or not. The opposite view is what I call "Trump Savior Syndrome" - the notion that Trump is "making America great again", or that Trump "has a hidden plan", etc. Both sides are lunatics. But the reason is cognitive dissonance - the Democrats can't accept the reality that *their* "Great White Hope" - Hillary Clinton - got trashed in the election, and the Trump-supporters can't accept that Trump has made a hash of his term in office, culminating in a pandemic and economic crash and that their version of "Satan" - the Democrats - might get back in office as a result. It's all a case of being emotionally over-wrought.

Dysfunctional doesn't even begin to address the situation.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Jul 18 2020 9:08 utc | 110

Washington state listed in the "11 state red zone" for more than 10% positive test... this is not supported by the data which shows 6% postive. Furthermore deaths attributed the virtus are being inflated. in one countyba by at least 13%...these 13% died from gunshot wounds but tested positive... garbage in garbage out

Posted by: dp | Jul 18 2020 9:59 utc | 111

@all - Cleaned up some of the trolls. Comment numbering will be distorted.

@Richard Steven Hack - Don't feed the trolls.

@Juliana - the quote in the UCSF video "When you mix science and politics, you get politics. With the coronavirus, the United States has proved politics hasn’t worked. If we are to fully reopen both the economy and schools safely — which can be done — we have to return to science."

It's the opening paragraph of a July 14 NYT OpEd by John M. Barry The Pandemic Could Get Much, Much Worse. We Must Act Now.

John M. Barry is the author of the acclaimed book about the Spanish flu: The Great Influenza

Posted by: b | Jul 18 2020 10:28 utc | 112

Like the British Labour Party under Corbyn subjected to a sustained attack. It’s clear to see this blog is very influential and a powerful force for good.
You can gage that by the frenzied attack by the delusional trump / antimask, racists here. I take that as a positive win on our behalf.
Some of the idiots are sounding very scared, insane and void of truth or reason !
Hilarious !

Posted by: Mark2 | Jul 18 2020 11:40 utc | 113

Posted by: b | Jul 18 2020 10:28 utc | 112 @Richard Steven Hack - Don't feed the trolls.

You got it, b.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Jul 18 2020 11:47 utc | 114

RS Hack: you definitely have a natural ability to write detailed explanations of your viewpoints and philosophy. Some call it “spewing”. I think it’s a talent more like some people have a special talent for playing a musical instrument . Reminds me of a research scientist I once worked for who described the skill as “diarrhea of the pen”. He meant it in a good-humoured way as someone who found writing arduous.

Posted by: krypton | Jul 18 2020 12:07 utc | 115

When you hear the truth it can be like a breath of fresh air.
The truth cuts through all this dissonance and hatred.
So take 11 mins to really focus on what is said on this link !!
So you trump supporters! It takes a brave person to admit you were wrong. But now is a good moment to do so.
Change sides.
No more race hate.
No more greed and lie’s
No more virus denial
Let love into your heart.
Welcome back to sanity.

Posted by: Mark2 | Jul 18 2020 12:50 utc | 116

Moon of Alabama has become Masks on Anyone.

Posted by: Perimetr | Jul 18 2020 13:02 utc | 117

Well I wear a gas mask model 1979, Danish Army issue, new filter, which I believe is sufficient to deal with Covid- 19.
The problem is that other people become frightened and invariably the police is called, some stores also think that a robbery is imminent....
Living in these times is difficult.

Posted by: Den lille abe | Jul 18 2020 13:19 utc | 118

Wtf happened to this place? Sad

Posted by: Wtf | Jul 18 2020 13:34 utc | 119

An excellent article at Novara Media on the situation in the UK.

"...As Britain feigns a return to normality, it’s increasingly clear that while the economy matters more than human life, the government’s approach will fail on both counts. We aren’t exiting lockdown because it’s safe, but because our economic system – and what it prioritises – has no alternative. Yet the way in which this is happening is about more than capitalism. It is an intensified variant of it – embraced most eagerly in Britain and the US – which sees politics as nothing more than the administration of economic activity.

"The miserable failure of Anglo-America compared to Cuba, Vietnam and Kerala will be remembered as a singular moment in the demise of an economic orthodoxy. Pretending lockdown is ending for any other reason than the imminent collapse of an already broken economic system – and this being defended across the political and media class – suggests the moral collapse goes even deeper."

As has been noted before, this pandemic is a dramatic illustration of the truth behind Rosa Luxemburg's doctrine that the choice before humanity is between "Socialism or Barbarism."
Given the fiscal consequences of the pandemic it is a choice that is going to have to be exercised within the next few months. It is this which lies at the heart of the viral idiocy of the 'pandemic denialists' they are so wedded to the capitalist system that they refuse to explore any alternative. For all their contrarian preenings they are in the same camp as Bolsonaro, Trump and the class they represent-a class which values its commercial profits over human life.

Posted by: bevin | Jul 18 2020 13:43 utc | 120

Trump refused to issue a federal order for mask wearing because that is a federal regulation and he was put in the Oval Office to gut federal regulations, not impose more. (by the Koch brothers)

Posted by: Antonym | Jul 18 2020 13:55 utc | 121

Anybody else getting tired of the f word usage increasing in the comments? Its usage usually means weakness of argument.

This isn't Zerohedge and this ain't no fight club. Get a grip please.

Posted by: Morongobill | Jul 18 2020 14:07 utc | 122

Well, it so happens that the US death rate from the Spanish Flu was 655 per 100,000 persons (675,000 deaths in a population of 103 million). That’s obviously orders of magnitude larger than the 39 per 100,000 deaths to date from the Covid.

Now, you don’t need to take a single class in epidemiology to understand a core truth: That is, when nearly 60 percent of the population under 45 years accounts for only 2.5 percent of the reported WITH-Covid deaths and has a rounding error mortality rate, while the 6.5 percent of the population 75 years and older accounts for 60 percent of the deaths—you don’t fight the disease with a one-size-fits all strategy of generic lockdowns, quarantines, and social regimentation.

And surely you don’t shutdown the schools, gyms, bars, restaurants, movies, ball games, concerts, beaches, theme parks etc. because the vulnerable elderly don’t patronize these venues in appreciable numbers anyway, and could easily be warned to stay strictly away.

The key point, however, is that this whole unspeakable Lockdown Folly does not remotely stem from the “science”

Posted by: jose | Jul 18 2020 15:40 utc | 123

It’s just a hair-brained experiment in social control that happened because the Donald was too weak, ill-informed, distracted, and innumerate to send Fauci and his camarilla of doctors and vaccine-peddlers packing when the mid-March guidelines were first issued by the CDC.

Yes, the Donald’s political enemies in the ranks of big city mayors and Blue State governors have feasted upon the chum Fauci & Co have persistently tossed into the fetid waters of national politics, but that doesn’t let Trump off the hook.

If the truth be told, this is the Trump Lockdown Folly and ranks among the greatest blunders ever committed by a US President. That’s because even at this late date nearly four months into the resulting economic disaster:

there is no evidence that asymptomatic persons are transmitters of the virus,

there is powerful statistical evidence that 95 percent of the population can cope with the disease and recover if they do become infected.

Posted by: jean | Jul 18 2020 15:41 utc | 124

In a constitutional democracy, where the liberties and properties of citizens are protected by law, you need overwhelming proof of an existential threat to society before ordering mass house arrests. But in this instance, the head of the WHO task force–the agency that fomented the whole coronavirus hysteria in the first place–has said quite unequivocally: No cigar!

In a word, Dr. Fauci is peddling dangerous humbug under the banner of pseudo-science, and should have been shut-up and forced into retirement long ago. The unfortunate truth, however, is that the Donald is too chicken to use the Fake “your fired” tool that made him a short-lived TV star, if not a successful businessman.

His defenders, of course, mumble that his hands are tied because Fauci is a member of the legally protected Senior Executive Service (SES). That’s Jimmy Carter’s gift to insubordinate bureaucracy, which your editor happily voted against back in the day—but the excuse is poppycock.

Posted by: leo | Jul 18 2020 15:42 utc | 125

The Virus Patrol has switched from the death count to the “case” count because the latter is not at the 3,000 per day predicted by the CDC in early May, and ballyhooed by the NYT and MSM as the leading edge of a horrid "second wave” coming down the pike.

In fact, during July to date (thru the 14th), the daily WITH-Covid death count has averaged 613, or only one-fifth of the projected June-July-August surge; and even that level is suspect, given the growing evidence that many local jurisdictions are doing retrospective death audits to pad their case counts.

In any event, the readily available state-by-state data tells you all you need to know. This so-called Sun Belt wave of cases is, indeed, the equivalent of the normal flu.

In the case of Florida, for instance, during the first 14 days of July, there have been 139,195 new cases reported, but only 4,322 new hospitalizations. So that means only 3.1 percent of this ballyhooed surge of cases was sick enough to even require hospitalization.

Needless to say, that’s not a crisis; it’s just one more part of the indictment against Fauci and his gang of malpracticing doctors. They have put the anti-Trump press into a rabid feeding frenzy, and that coverage, in turn, has caused the American public to head back into their Covid holes.

As it happened, three of the nation’s largest banks reported their totally confected earnings for Q2 this AM, but the one thing that stood out as meaningful was a collective $28 billion provision for future loan losses. That is, they see the massive wave of defaults set in motion by Fauci’s misbegotten Lockdown Nation strategy, and are getting prepared for the worst.

Posted by: ed | Jul 18 2020 15:44 utc | 126

There is literally no evidence that re-usable cloth masks are effective in community settings. None. It’s like wearing a tin foil hat in case you get struck by lightening – an ineffective way to protect yourself from an almost non-existent risk. What has become of us?

Posted by: jose | Jul 18 2020 15:46 utc | 127

So Masks?
I am OSHA 10&30 certified. I know some of you are too. I don’t really know WHY OSHA hasn’t come forward and stopped the nonsense BUT I want to cover 3 things
• N95 masks and masks with exhale ports
• surgical masks
• filter or cloth masks

Okay, so upon further inspection, OSHA says some masks are okay and not okay in certain situations.
If you’re working with fumes and aerosol chemicals and you give your employees the wrong masks and they get sick, you can be sued.

• N95 masks: are designed for CONTAMINATED environments. That means when you exhale through N95 the design is that you are exhaling into contamination. The exhale from N95 masks are vented to breath straight out without filtration. They don’t filter the air on the way out. They don’t need to.
Conclusion: if you’re in Target and the guy with Covid has a N95 mask, his covid breath is unfiltered being exhaled into Target (because it was designed for already contaminated environments, it’s not filtering your air on the way out).

• Surgical Mask: these masks were designed and approved for STERILE environments. The amount of particles and contaminants in the outside and indoor environments where people are CLOGGING these masks very, VERY quickly. The moisture from your breath combined with the clogged mask will render it “useless” IF you come in contact with Covid and your mask traps it, YOU become a walking virus dispenser. Everytime you put your mask on you are breathing the germs from EVERYWHERE you went. They should be changed or thrown out every “20-30 minutes in a non sterile environment.”

• Cloth masks: I can’t even believe I’m having to explain this, but here it goes. Today, three people pointed to their masks as they walked by me entering Lowe’s. They said “ya gotta wear your mask BRO” I said very clearly “those masks don’t work bro, in fact they MAKE you sicker” they “pshh’d” me. By now hopefully you all know CLOTH masks do not filter anything. You mean the American flag one my aunt made? Yes. The one with sunflowers that looks so cute? Yes. The bandanna, the cut up t-shirt, the scarf ALL of them offer NO FILTERING whatsoever. As you exhale, you are ridding your lungs of contaminants and carbon dioxide. Cloth masks trap this carbon dioxide the best. It actually risks your health, rather than protect it. The moisture caught in these masks can become mildew ridden over night. Dry coughing, enhanced allergies, sore throat are all symptoms of a micro-mold in your mask.

-Ultimate Answer:

*N95 blows the virus into the air from a contaminated person.

*The surgical mask is not designed for the outside world and will not filter the virus upon inhaling through it. It’s filtration works on the exhale, (Like a vacuum bag, it only works one way) but likely stops after 20 minutes, rendering it useless outside of a STERILE ENVIRONMENT (correct Becky, they don’t work in a bar, not even a little bit).

*Cloth masks are WORSE than none. It’s equivalent to using a chain link fence to stop mosquitos.

Posted by: john Wyne | Jul 18 2020 15:49 utc | 128

Mask mandates are nothing more than an effort at control and submission by the government. The fact that so many people mindlessly follow, comply, and submit to this garbage is truly alarming.

Posted by: Rick Moran | Jul 18 2020 15:54 utc | 129

jose 124

Medical knowledge of the day was such that all they could do was place the beds outside so patients had fresh air. no antibiotics for secondary infections, no intravenous fluids, no ventilators.

If today we were no further advanced in medicine than the early 1900's covid19 fatalities would be many times more.

Some current number per hundred thousand that will rise further - New York 167.2 New Jersey 177.4 Without modern medicine those numbers would be easily multiplied three or four times. Death toll as a percentage of population would be somewhere near Spanish flue, perhaps a bit more, perhaps a bit less.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Jul 18 2020 15:59 utc | 130

john Wyne 129

N95 is simply a filtration standard. Many different models and types are made to that standard. Something you get from a hardware store is most likely to be vented as they are purely to keep particles out.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Jul 18 2020 16:08 utc | 131

et’s assume that the events of the last five months are neither random nor unexpected.

Let’s say they’re part of an ingenious plan to transform American democracy into a lockdown police state controlled by criminal elites and their puppet governors.

And let’s say the media’s role is to fan the flames of mass hysteria by sensationalizing every gory detail, every ominous prediction and every slightest uptick in the death toll in order to exert greater control over the population.

And let’s say the media used their power to craft a message of terror they’d repeat over and over again until finally, there was just one frightening storyline ringing-out from every soapbox and bullhorn, one group of governors from the same political party implementing the same destructive policies, and one small group of infectious disease experts –all incestuously related– issuing edicts in the form of “professional advice.”

It all boils down to this: Ruling class elites are using a public health crisis to wage a full-scale war on the American people and their system of representative government. The Democrat-CIA-Media Axis has been instrumental in prosecuting the conflict, as they were in the Russiagate fiasco. These are the shock troops who execute the battleplan of economic strangulation, covert skulduggery, and relentless disinformation. By the time the American people figure out what’s going on, the political landscape will have changed completely.

Posted by: jose | Jul 18 2020 16:10 utc | 132

Watching the sheeple comply with every communist edict is rather like observing an experiment in a Petri dish. Most mill around each other, watchful of their fellow amoebas as to the extent of the other's compliance. If a mask is lowered below the nostrils or, God forbid, not worn AT ALL... the other specimens glare their disapproval at the dissident's stubborn independence. It truly is astonishing to behold. We, the thinking people, must pray that there are enough of our species who still have the ability to reason and thus, can reclaim and rebuild our civilization after this surreal and insane era passes into history.

Posted by: leo | Jul 18 2020 16:11 utc | 133

Watching the sheeple comply with every communist edict is rather like observing an experiment in a Petri dish. Most mill around each other, watchful of their fellow amoebas as to the extent of the other's compliance. If a mask is lowered below the nostrils or, God forbid, not worn AT ALL... the other specimens glare their disapproval at the dissident's stubborn independence. It truly is astonishing to behold. We, the thinking people, must pray that there are enough of our species who still have the ability to reason and thus, can reclaim and rebuild our civilization after this surreal and insane era passes into history.

Posted by: leo | Jul 18 2020 16:11 utc | 134

Not wearing a mask is not mere “personal choice” like deciding between a head covering or a t-shirt. It is a flashpoint for being a free human being who has consented to be governed but has not consented to be ruled. We do not consent to a masked America, because that is a fundamental change in American society, culture, norms, and rights.

Posted by: Jean | Jul 18 2020 16:11 utc | 135

The scientific usefulness of a mask has been so aggressively overstated, and the foundational importance of the Constitution has been so aggressively understated, that we have normalized people screaming obscenities at each other while hiking.

The Covid virus was supposed to be contained in the kind of lab where people wear astronaut suits and go through triple sealed doors. It is a con of massive proportion to assert that now, having escaped those environs, a bandana will magically do the trick

Posted by: Ed | Jul 18 2020 16:13 utc | 136

People who are apathetic toward their own liberty cannot eliminate Constitutional rights for those who are not. This is not the first (or last) time that people who believe in superstition are screaming the loudest. The Constitution exists precisely to protect all people during times of mass hysteria.

The mask has become the most visible symbol of #socialconditioning to Americans determined to preserve individual freedom. Thus far most Americans have continued to give their consent to be governed. But you are trying our patience.

Posted by: Jean | Jul 18 2020 16:14 utc | 137

If by "mandatory nonsense" you mean the official insanity of lockdown and social distancing, I'm afraid not. They are engaged in a five year plan to radically change the way we live. They are doing lots of things behind the scenes to prepare for the Great Global Reset.

The climate change hoax wasn't working too well so they have switched to this coronavirus hoax. Inter alia it is covering up a second bail out of the banks.

Posted by: Bill | Jul 18 2020 16:15 utc | 138

My guess is Kemp has a substantial petite-bourgeois electoral base. That's why he's going all-in with the genocidal option.

There's a thesis among conservatives in the USA (and among the Americanized Latin American elites) that, if you create a propaganda environment where deaths by COVID-19 are acceptable, people will go back to work and consume as usual and the economy will not suffer at all, i.e. this crisis is psychological, not real. This thesis is particularly strong among the petite-bourgeoisie, whose small and medium businesses are zombie firms and can't survive too long without rotating their capitals (my guess is most of them don't have insurance?).

The thesis that the economy is purely psychological is not new. It has been a dominant doctrine in Western Economics since the beginning of the neoliberal era. Deep down, it is the symptom of the financialization process of the Western economies, where bubbles are the rule. The difference now is that it is being taken to the extreme: now even hard facts and death itself are being deemed as purely imaginary.

However, this crisis is not "psychological". The pandemic has shut down the manufacturing sector, which has strangulated the services sector. As the world is already interconnected in a "global market" (globalization), the shutting down of the manufacturing countries has resulted in the strangulation of the services countries (consumer countries). That's why, for example, Norway (which implemented a lockdown) and Sweden (which went for social Darwinism) are suffering roughly the same economically: they are very similar economies, completely dependent on China and the other major manufacturing powers to keep their capital rotating.

Manufacturing must shut down with the pandemic because, if they don't, their highly skilled workers will be infected and die or be neutralized as a productive force. Since you can't replace experienced and trained manufacturing labor power overnight, that would result in a de facto general strike effect, shutting down the plants either way - for a much longer time. To claim the economy can keep working as always during a pandemic is the same to claim the economy can keep working as always after a major earthquake or tsunami.

The petite-bourgeoisie, however, has a greater threat in this specific case: the big bourgeoisie. Since the Western economies already were on all fours before the pandemic, the big business in the West is now calculating that, by eliminating the small, unproductive businesses, they have more vital space after the pandemic to expand, thus initiating a new cycle of accumulation of capital. Needless to say, the petite-bourgeoisie has no chance of winning this war: the big bourgeoisie has the MSM at its disposal, and is easily winning at the narrative front (plus, it has, for once, science at its favor: it's much easier to win the propaganda war when truth is on your side).

I believe there will be such a vital space for big business, but I don't think it will be enough so as to initiate another Kondratiev Cycle (cycle of innovation) in the West. The WWII case - which gave birth to the post-war miracle - was different because the new, revolutionary technology (electronics) was already ready for massification at the 1920s. In that specific case, a large scale war solved the problems of capitalism because it destroyed the old technological infrastructure at the center of the system (Europe and Japan), in a way there was no other way out if not rebuilding with the new technology.

There's no substitute for electricity in our times: nuclear fusion is still at its early experimental stages, and show no promising results. A world war is also out of the cards, because now we have nuclear weapons (which would imply in the outright extinction of the homo sapiens, not in a technological revolution).

The solution is inciting America's enemies to wage a more aggressive, but non-nuclear war against it, as I put it here in another thread. The American Deep State seems to believe that a war against a powerful foreign enemy will be enough of a societal catalyst to force American big business to initiate another Kondratiev Cycle (mainly fusion energy, but also logistics and communications, as the Amazon case indicates).

The problem with this (rather demented) thesis, besides the fact that it doesn't make scientific sense, lies in the fact that the USA has already grown so big, so imperialist and so aggressive, that it became almost impossible to hide its position (the "whale in a swimming pool" dilemma). China has seen its cards and has already stated it will not fall for it:

Will there be a war between China and the US?

Posted by: vk | Jul 18 2020 16:15 utc | 139

A surgeon wheres a mask in the operating theater to prevent moisture, saliva and anything on his face etc from entering an open wound. Wearing a mask outside in the open air or in a large store is idiocy.

And the insanity is that wearing masks of any type is not only worthless in controlling the spread of the virus, but they masks themselves contribute to health problems.

So when Civil War II finally develops, make sure your understand that leftists politicians, bureaucrats, and the management of major corporations are all the enemies of freedom. As for the corporate management, you can tell which corporations are involved when you can't enter their stores without submitting to their tyranny.

Posted by: Jimmy | Jul 18 2020 16:17 utc | 140

And the fake libertarian trolls continue to spew their garbage.

Not worthwhile to respond because b will take out the garbage later.


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 18 2020 16:17 utc | 141

Further evidence which supports the view that mankind is being beaten down to impoverished fearful people forced to wear face masks, ask yourself what sectors of the economy are being decimated the most.

Well, it's the pleasure fun sector:

..tourism/travel, airlines are all on life support

..the hospitality sector, hotels, bars, restaurants, clubs all on their knees and many will never reopen

Welcome to the new Marxist World Order.

Posted by: Alex | Jul 18 2020 16:18 utc | 142

And let’s say the media used their power to craft a message of terror they’d repeat over and over again until finally, there was just one frightening storyline ringing-out from every soapbox and bullhorn, one group of governors from the same political party implementing the same destructive policies, and one small group of infectious disease experts –all incestuously related– issuing edicts in the form of “professional advice.”

Yep, pretty much. Funny, where I am the local news media has picked up the baton from the Governor's "Covid task force" and runs wall-to-wall coverage every single day. I get that this is absolutely how the "Big Lie" works, but I'm thinking that in 4 months the people might decide to hand the Dims their *** politically just to change the story. But I don't know what the next thing is that the DeepState/Swamp has planned between now and then

Posted by: Jane | Jul 18 2020 16:19 utc | 143

Given that the crises is being handled the way it is, and that big tech, big tech, big health insurance and biotech are doing quite well while all others suffer, does it not make sense that these organizations authored the national plan and lobbied to get it implemented? Anyone looking for an explanation

Posted by: | Jul 18 2020 16:20 utc | 144

@ 142 jackrabbit...

it is fairly clear the poster - Really? went back to his favourite website - - and told them to do a mass attack on moa which is what we are witnessing now... fun hey??

Posted by: james | Jul 18 2020 16:26 utc | 145

I'm as yet unconvinced that this merciless COVID-19 death virus, that has so many governments desperately panicking and shutting down their precious economies, is in any way realistic.

I do not see the IFR (Infection Fatality Rate) is any more than that of the common cold, somewhere between 0.25 and 0.5%. It may be more infectious, but I have yet to see any sensible statistics on R0, compared to Swine Flu or Jacobs-Creuzfelds disease, or any other 'pandemic', which the genius Dr Neale Ferguson's glorious AI predictions assured us we will all be dead from shortly.

If we measured the common cold with the same intensity we measured the COVID-19 SARS-2 virus, I daresay we would come up with similar numbers. One has become a preciously notifiable virus to be searched out and tested for eagerly, and to be blamed for as much possible, despite the fact that most that have died were very old, and their immune systems were already failing, or had various co-morbidities.

It seems much the same as the other more normal flu's, which, as often as not, gets put down to 'respiratory failure', and not worth maesuring.

Numbers, damned numbers, and statistics.

It all depends how you collect and advertise them, doesn't it?

Posted by: Ant. | Jul 18 2020 16:36 utc | 146

james 146

Someone's doing the organizing that's for sure. Yank freedom from thought and intelligence on full display

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Jul 18 2020 16:39 utc | 147

@ Posted by: Alex | Jul 18 2020 16:18 utc | 143

Well, Spain, Italy, Greece and Japan forced a reopening under the very same argument of yours: to revive the tourism sector in order to stimulate a V-shaped recovery.

Regardless of the fact that the tourism industry is a sham that has never promoted any kind of development of any nation (unless you're talking about the micro-nations from Oceania), you have that all of them immediately saw a sudden spike in cases and are already considering to reinforce some form of lockdown.

Make whatever conclusions you want from this information.


@ Posted by: Jane | Jul 18 2020 16:19 utc | 144

The counter-argument (against this position, which is mainly held/appropriated by the Western "alt-right") is that the first nation to enforce a full-fledged lockdown (and, so far, the only one) is China, and that the first instinct of the governments of the major Western powers was not of enforcing the lockdown and creating a panic mode, but of denying the pandemic and claiming it was a "hoax" from China.

It was only after the pandemic ate Italy alive that the Western powers begun to enforce - very timid - lockdowns. And it was only well after the pandemic was already devastating New York City that the Trump administration caved in and tried to enforce some form of lockdown (which was later denied, as the SCOTUS or whatever determined it was in the governors' power to enforce or not any kind of lockdown).

So, History of 2020 tells us the primeval instinct of the Western governments wasn't to instantly enforce lockdown and implement an atmosphere of fear, but the exact opposite: to calm their peoples down, claim it was a hoax from the Chinese (or claim it only infected Asians, as was initially spread out by a charlatan from the Imperial College of London), and incite them to keep working and consuming. It was only when the virus showed it didn't care about geopolitics and economics that the Western governments were slowly, but surely, being put down to their knees.

Besides, you have to face the fact that different governments from different ideologies of the political spectrum came - albeit from different routes - to the same result of enforcing some form of lockdown. If you accept the premise there's a global "Masters of the Universe" organization that secretly controls all the governments of the world, you automatically (by logic) have to accept the fact the hypothesis of "Cultural Marxism" is false (as in that case, Boris Johnson and Donald Trump would be, at the same time, alt-righters and cultural Marxists). This goes against the alt-right belief there's a faction of the elite indoctrinated in the so-called "cultural Marxism".

On the other side, some alt-righters have developed the more sophisticated version that the "cultural Marxists" are instead a powerful, subterranean middle class of courtiers that are "deceiving" (with witchcraft?) the capitalist class with their ideology, thus manipulating it through crafty palatial politics. But, in this case, they deny the "Masters of the Universe" hypothesis. The alt-right ideology is, therefore, logically unsustainable, and the facts indicate that, at least the "cultural Marxists" are a complete fabrication, i.e. far-rightist propaganda.

Posted by: vk | Jul 18 2020 16:44 utc | 148

It is a shame when our host has to play janitor, but apparently some visitors to the bar cannot handle their uisce beatha and feel compelled to leave a smelly mess. Everyone else should just avoid stepping in that mess until our host has a chance to clean it up. Do note that comment numbers will change when that cleanup happens and try to use the UTC comment posting times to link replies for now.

Posted by: William Gruff | Jul 18 2020 16:47 utc | 149

Kemp is a criminal who won the GA election by fraud. Before becoming governor, he was in charge of GA elections. I forgot exactly how, but he used his position to cheat in the governor's race and "win".

Posted by: Edward | Jul 18 2020 16:49 utc | 150

Posted by: john Wyne | Jul 18 2020 15:49 utc | 129

Surgical masks protect other people (to at least some degree), not the person wearing them. Thus, they still have value for that purpose. The problem is that people conflate using an N95 mask to protect *them* with surgical masks to protect *others*.

Ideally one would want to have everyone wearing a non-valved N95 or even an N99 mask or even a full-head-covering respirator.. In practice, the best we can do is provide some sort of face covering.

As I've said before, it is a probability game. The goal is to reduce the probability of infection, not eliminate it which is a goal that is next to impossible. However, even if a mask of any kind is not more than X percent effective, there is still the likelihood that most of the viral load will either get trapped in the fibers or blocked by the physical fibers themselves. No matter how small the viral particle is, it can be stopped by a solid object like a mask fiber. Thus, the goal is to reduce the level of viral particles that enter the vulnerable orifices, and failing that, to reduce the viral load of the particles that do get through.

Agree about the home-made masks, but as they say, anything is better than nothing. Especially if, as was the case a couple months ago, N95 masks were simply unavailable outside of China (which is where I got mine.)

OSHA recommends N95 masks for health care workers in a pandemic situation. See this document.

Bottom line: Dismissing masks as not worth the effort is incorrect. *Any* effort is worth doing as long as it is practical - which masks certainly are.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Jul 18 2020 16:51 utc | 151

this is all quite puzzling. why the concerted effort to convince people that wearing a mask is bad? are all these people so egotistical that the thought of a simple act of consideration toward a fellow human causes them discomfort?

how are they bettering society by attempting to convince us not to wear a mask?

this BS about personal freedoms is not applicable, there are far greater dangers than being asked to wear a mask when communicable diseases are widespread and causing pain, suffering, and death.

what is the agenda here?

Posted by: dan of steele | Jul 18 2020 16:54 utc | 152

Posted by: james | Jul 18 2020 16:26 utc | 146 it is fairly clear the poster - Really? went back to his favourite website - - and told them to do a mass attack on moa which is what we are witnessing now... fun hey??

Sure looks like it. Supports my suggestion that Really?? was a paid troll.

Oh, well, I've been up too late, need to get some sleep. Hopefully by the time I get up late this afternoon, b will have done another housecleaning.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Jul 18 2020 16:56 utc | 153

richard - you are a real night owl!

Posted by: james | Jul 18 2020 17:01 utc | 154

dan of steele 153

US 'freedoms' is very applicable to what is happening in the US. It has been hammered into Americans along with exceptionalism.
Everything about the US now is the maturing of its culture, particularly the post WWII cold war culture.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Jul 18 2020 17:02 utc | 155


Do you any evidence that particulate masks, no matter what fineness, can protect others from your sneezes? Viruses are tiny sub-cellular organisms. They are are much smaller that the tiniest bacteria that masks can be designed to protect against.

I don't object to them, if they they give you a sense of protection then enjoy. I personally think it's a false sense of security, lacking reality.

Posted by: Ant. | Jul 18 2020 17:03 utc | 156

dan of steele @Jul18 16:54 #153

what is the agenda here?

The agenda is really quite transparent: excuse Trump's inept response to the virus; kill minorities and 'useless' older people whose healthcare costs the government a great deal of money (these are the two groups most susceptible to dying from Covid-19); and provide a boondoggle to Big Pharma.

These trolls are astroturfed Trump/Republican partisans or paid by Big Pharma.


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 18 2020 17:10 utc | 157

There are no honest numbers or clean numbers and there will not be. Here in Cook County entirely impossible to get accurate or consistent daily stats because the County Public Health Department is split into six separate competing .... oldhippie @ 17.

Yup. Other ex. Why are nos. of infections, ICU occupied beds, deaths, etc. so different in England (Wales left out + N. Ireland is part of a diff. land and system) and Scotland, as the contrast on a tiny territory with no borders is striking.

One can try to tease out, speculate, about factors (dense town vs. country, high travel / not, mass meetings/not, medical savvy, etc.), often an illusory exercise as in an epidemic chance events drive the spread — in part. (e.g. one manic superspreader early on.) See here about reporting:

Sorting UK reporting out would take about 3 qualified ppl 2 days or so, but that won’t happen. If it did, the conclusions would be repressed, or mocked, challenged. Confusion and uncertainty are the name of the game, and imho the miasma (sic) isn’t even deliberately organised, it’s an outcome of incompetence, competing interests, and a total lack of caring about people, children.

The UK has ++ professionals in many agencies who submit to bosses, colleagues, and/or orders from above, Gvmt. about reporting etc. Possibly some don’t even know or fully understand what they are doing. Others may grasp, but hey, my kids go to private school. They are part of the 20%, with acceptable salaries, positions, so to conserve their status they simply obey, do what is asked … The schema for reporting is imposed from above, changes often - nobody questions it publically, etc.

So all the competing interests, tribal factions, scammers, mega corp. stooges are fighting it out.

The UK will break down, will break up.

Posted by: Noirette | Jul 18 2020 17:50 utc | 158

There has been a real deterioration of the discussion about Covid19 here, in part because B embraces the mythology about masks and does not understand how epidemics develop over time. Rather than try to answer all of this stuff, I am going to provide two useful links, one about masks and their effectiveness (or lack thereof), the other about immunity:

Those wanting genuine information, please go and read the linked articles. They will clear away a lot of the misconceptions circulating about the pandemic.

Posted by: R.A. | Jul 18 2020 17:56 utc | 159


Trump's response to he corono-virus has nothing to do with bigotry or minorities. What you are really moaning about is the way corporate America is run. That's not Trump, he is only the latest example of many US of A presidents. Do you think really Biden could do anything better? He's just a plastic facade for corporate interests too.

That's America, love it or not. Sink or swim, according to your abilities. Unless you have a sense of social responsibility, like having free education, or free health-care, or decent unemployment benefits, or a right to own a home (like Moammar Khadaffi's Libya, which NATO decided to trash, for their own fantastic reasons).

Of course, the glorious US of A is more freedom-loving that Khaddafi's Libya. We've all been assured of that by the NYT, Wapo...

Posted by: Ant. | Jul 18 2020 17:57 utc | 160

Moon of Alabama. Bwahaha! This site is only slightly worse than The Daily Kos. Never seen so much ignorance in one spot. Masks 😂,what good are they...zilch. Might as well hold up your used handkerchief over your face. .04micron. What part of that don’t you get? N95 aren’t designed to protect the next guy....supposedly just the wearer. F##k MofA. Used to be somewhat just another mouth piece of MSM. Go Georgia governor! KAG

Posted by: Ljag | Jul 18 2020 18:47 utc | 161

Ant. @Jul18 17:57 #161

Trump's response to he corono-virus has nothing to do with bigotry or minorities.

I didn't say that it did. I wrote about the objectives of the trolls.

But it's clear to anyone paying attention that Trump's bigotry is thinly veiled. I'm sure he and his Administration knows the composition of who is dying/affected. Partisans and paid trolls do the dirty work.

We see the same sort of two-faced crap in other areas. Good example is the recent news that Trump signed a Presidential finding that lets CIA conduct covert wars while Trump bashes Bolton as a warmonger (so Trump himself looks like a peacenik).

... the way corporate America is run. That's not Trump ...

Neoliberal government is essentially fascist. The traditional meaning of 'fascist' is a melding of government and corporate interests. So any difference between corporate America and Trump (or any US President) is difficult to distinguish.

... he is only the latest example of many US of A presidents.?

I guess you don't read moa much. Most of us here are well aware of the two-party scam and illusion of democracy.

That's America, love it or not. Sink or swim ...

No. That's the America that they hope you will accept like a good sheeple.

We've all been assured of that by the NYT, Wapo...

I think you forgot the /sarc tag.


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 18 2020 18:50 utc | 162

I am really confused. With 4 known proven generic cheap cures, why do you get yammering about Gov. Kemp? With thousands of epidemiologists proving conclusively that masks do nothing to stop infection, why do you keep yowling about masks?

Really. Why do you keep writing these columns?

Posted by: restless94110 | Jul 18 2020 18:57 utc | 163

The American Myth is not sustained by the majority of Americans actually practicing personal responsibility in their lives.

Since (according to "someone on the internet") children do not transmit the disease, why not staff old people homes entirely with children,no worries about school and would be allowed by the Constitution.

Posted by: Randy | Jul 18 2020 19:44 utc | 164

If I came on here and wrote: "could you pass some of that Jim Jones Kool Aid my way? I'd like to get in the Left's bizarro version of reality" I suspect most would get their backs up in a hurry. Yet the one consistent thing I see from the Left is endless insults against people who oppose the lock downs or mandatory mask wearing. Either one accepts our version of reality or you're a Trumptard! You can't have an intelligent discourse if opposing views are immediately demonized. Like with everything else in the culture war, the Left sees it has the upper hand - full support from the media and the government - and chooses to bully others into conformity. Personally, to find myself in agreement with the MSM version of events would make me reassess my position.

Perhaps you people are correct. Maybe lock downs and social distancing and mandatory masks are buying us time for, at least, better treatment of Covid 19. Nevertheless, these dictates from government are counter to a free society. One should be honest about the choice here. Temporary suspension of civil liberties is a Trojan Horse. How can it be temporary once one has granted governments the power to impose such measures whenever they want? The Left could at least come clean and admit that we are giving up certain freedoms in order to keep everyone safe. How you do that without sliding down a slippery slope is beyond my comprehension. Perhaps its self deception and many people believe all will magically return to normal some day soon. That's certainly the BS the government and its scientists are selling to con everyone into obeying.

Honestly I do not know how dire this pandemic is. I would not be surprised if Covid 19 is something we must simply live with. If that's the case then we lose both ways because we're well on our way to creating a conformist society in which personal freedoms exist only with the permission of government. I'm not going to begin trusting a media which has lied to me for, at least 2 decades. Plus the idea of giving unlimited power to politicians no one with any sense should trust - or scientists who got tired of pushing global warming because they found something more frightening - is crazy thinking. Perhaps that's why the Left is so rabid when it comes to those disagreeing with their views. Insult people, shout them down, do whatever it takes to enforce conformity, just don't look at how unsustainable the position you are taking is. I guess a society in and out of endless lock downs works so long as the government is creating money out of thin air and giving it to everyone. Common sense tells me that can't last forever.

Posted by: EoinW | Jul 18 2020 19:48 utc | 165

Regarding all these covid / mask denialists what we’re seeing is a lashing out at the undeniable truth. We are now in the ninth month of infection (probably much longer)
You can deny reality for only so long. We are seeing a coping mechanism, lashing out at the messenger. ‘b’
My advice to these new commenters ———
‘Don’t punch downward, punch upward’
Have some self awareness for goodness sake,
Never show weakness in front of the enemy!
Right now you appear to be wetting your pants.

Posted by: Mark2 | Jul 18 2020 19:58 utc | 166

The WHO has more moves than OJ Simpson in his prime. People who have CovID-19 and are Asymptomatic rarely pass disease to secondary persons.

Posted by: Lawrence Cook | Jul 18 2020 20:16 utc | 167

@164 you are confused because you have fallen for propaganda.
1.there are no proven cheap cures yet, much less 4 of them
2.masks work
if you start off by being unaware of basic facts about the subject, you are not likely to reach a sound conclusion.

Posted by: pretzelattack | Jul 18 2020 20:19 utc | 168

Jackrabbit | Jul 18 2020 17:10 utc | 158

the great Billmon called these people "little Eichmanns". I guess that still fits. I see similar behavior on Fox News. Some of those people are genuinely stupid and have no idea what they are proposing but others know what they are doing and are doing it because the money is good.

It has been my experience after more than 65 solar orbits that what goes around comes around. Of course these "morons" won't get it and insist that life has been so unfair and if only their guy had not run into resistance from the enemy of the day, everything would have worked out swimmingly.

as for this being an American thing, that is a bit of a simplification. As top dog for the last 70 years or so, it was easy to submit to hubris. Most people wouldn't understand the advice of George Burns who said to be nice to people on the way up because you will meet those same people on the way down.

well, we might not be going down just yet but I don't think it is that far off.

Posted by: dan of steele | Jul 18 2020 21:47 utc | 169

You don't have to be a rocket scientist
to see that we are headed to
a Chinese Communist-style
social credit system based
on receiving a COVID vaccination.
We need to reject the mask now.

We need to start organizations in every state
and province to offer moral, legal and financial support
to courageous people willing to defy fascism.

Posted by: Jose | Jul 18 2020 22:44 utc | 170

@b | Jul 18 2020 10:28 utc | 112

["When you mix science and politics, you get politics."] It's the opening paragraph of a July 14 NYT OpEd by John M. Barry The Pandemic Could Get Much, Much Worse. We Must Act Now.

Normally, I avoid the New York Times like poison, but I read the article on your recommendation. I was not disappointed; it's a good piece.

I see that the author is connecting the coronavirus to the Spanish Flu, which I also did two months ago here and here.

I also see that the person (Caliman) I was chiding for his misguided "herd immunity" recommendation is still against a reasonable tactic like mandatory facemask wearing, perhaps because it violates his constitutional right to infect anyone he damn well pleases.

Posted by: Cyril | Jul 18 2020 23:00 utc | 171

@jose | Jul 18 2020 16:10 utc | 133

Ruling class elites are using a public health crisis to wage a full-scale war on the American people and their system of representative government.

The elites are almost certainly exploiting the coronavirus crisis, but facemask wearing, soap, and social distancing are still good ideas.

Posted by: Cyril | Jul 18 2020 23:31 utc | 172

Trump's attempting to prevent anymore appropriations for CDC and COVID testing and tracing this report reveals:

"With coronavirus cases, hospitalizations, and deaths rising in states across the U.S., the Trump administration is reportedly attempting to block the inclusion of billions of dollars in new funding for Covid-19 testing and contact tracing in the next stimulus legislation....

"The White House's attempt to block funds for coronavirus testing and tracing comes weeks after President Donald Trump said during a June 20 campaign rally that he ordered members of his administration to 'slow the testing down,' falsely blaming the surge in Covid-19 cases on increased testing capacity. In an interview with the Wall Street Journal the previous day, the president said 'testing is overrated' because it 'makes us look bad.'

"Public health officials, including Dr. Anthony Fauci, have repeatedly stressed that the United States cannot hope to contain the spread of Covid-19 and reopen safely without a nationwide testing and contact tracing system in place."

I repeat my charge that Trump's committing Treason by deliberately destroying the ability of the people to "provide for the common defence," which is a key part of the Constitution he swore to uphold and defend:

"I try to avoid hyperbole but I can't think what to call this other than attempted murder."

Posted by: karlof1 | Jul 18 2020 23:34 utc | 173

You wear masks all the time indoors ? Even when sleeping ?
Masks neither effective nor safe

Posted by: Brian | Jul 19 2020 0:56 utc | 174

mask wearing leading to another envitronmental catastrophe

Conservationists have warned that the coronavirus pandemic could spark a surge in ocean pollution – adding to a glut of plastic waste that already threatens marine life – after finding disposable masks floating like jellyfish and waterlogged latex gloves scattered across seabeds.

The French non-profit Opération Mer Propre, whose activities include regularly picking up litter along the Côte d’Azur, began sounding the alarm late last month.

Divers had found what Joffrey Peltier of the organisation described as “Covid waste” – dozens of gloves, masks and bottles of hand sanitiser beneath the waves of the Mediterranean, mixed in with the usual litter of disposable cups and aluminium cans.

Posted by: brian | Jul 19 2020 1:01 utc | 175

TN editor:
'My wife and I dined out last night in a very empty restaurant and the young waitress was required to wear a cloth mask. I asked her how she was doing with the mask and if there were any side effects. She related that was consistently short of breath (when away from the table, she lowered the mask below her nose) and that she had actually passed out because of it a few days earlier, taking her straight to the floor. Fortunately, she was not hurt. ⁃ TN Editor

Posted by: brian | Jul 19 2020 1:04 utc | 176

It's been interesting to catch up on the last half of this thread. It showed me what a troll attack is really like. We were spoiled previously ;)

Libertarians showing the power of collective action. Cute.

Posted by: Grieved | Jul 19 2020 1:22 utc | 177

Let's say there are 100 virus infected people in the bar. And also assume that the average person can be infectious for two weeks (14 days) before getting any signs of sickness. If with no mask they will infect 1.1 people in 14 days. Then in one year:

100*(1.1^(365/14)) |very nearly|= 1200.0

We now have increased the infection from 100 to 1200 victims.

But if they all have masks they will (only) infect 0.9 people in 14 days. Then in one year:

100*(0.9^(365/14)) |very nearly|= 6.4

So the number of infected victims drops from 100 to 6.4.

You have to play poker with the virus. With a slight disadvantage, you lose.

Posted by: blues | Jul 19 2020 3:10 utc | 178

Worth the read, but won't convince the trolls, and the rest of us probably already know this stuff.

Masks offer much more protection against coronavirus than many think

If you’re unlucky enough to encounter an infectious person, wearing any kind of face covering will reduce the amount of virus that your body will take in.

As it turns out, that’s pretty important. Breathing in a small amount of virus may lead to no disease or far more mild infection. But inhaling a huge volume of virus particles can result in serious disease or death.

That’s the argument Dr. Monica Gandhi, UC San Francisco professor of medicine and medical director of the HIV Clinic at Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital, is making about why — if you do become infected with the virus — masking can still protect you from more severe disease.

“There is this theory that facial masking reduces the [amount of virus you get exposed to] and disease severity,” said Gandhi, who is also director for the Center for AIDS Research at UC San Francisco....

“This anti-mask rhetoric is mind-blowing, dangerous, deadly and polarizing,” said Dr. Peter Chin-Hong, professor of medicine and an infectious diseases specialist at UC San Francisco. “There is no evidence that it is dangerous.”...

Transmission rates for coronavirus have been rising across the state. Nearly 1,000 of San Francisco’s nearly 4,600 cases have been diagnosed in just the last two weeks, said Dr. Grant Colfax, the city’s director of public health.

In San Francisco, nearly half of all those who have tested positive in the city are Latinos, he said, even though Latino residents make up just 15% of the city’s population. Overall, the city has seen 7.8 new infections per 100,000 residents over the last seven days, far above its goal of no more than 1.8 new infections per 100,000 people.

“This, again, indicates that the virus is spreading throughout the city, particularly ... in the southeast part of the city,” Colfax said.

For every one person who contracts the virus, another 1.25 people on average are now infected, he said. “We really need to drive that down to 1 or below as quickly and as soon as possible.”

That rate of increase in San Francisco might be the start of the "homeless and SRO" outbreak I've been expecting. It didn't happen so far, probably due to the lockdown, but now that more people are running around, many without masks, I would expect it to be more likely.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Jul 19 2020 3:26 utc | 179

And from UC Davis...

Your Mask Cuts Own Risk by 65 Percent

“Everyone should wear a mask,” Blumberg said. “People who say, ‘I don’t believe masks work,’ are ignoring scientific evidence. It’s not a belief system. It’s like saying, ‘I don’t believe in gravity.’

Well, some of these morons probably don't believe in gravity... After all, gravity is invisible and it's "politically oppressive" because it prevents you from flying. :-)

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Jul 19 2020 3:31 utc | 180

@ 180 & @181 Richard Steven Hack

Both good articles - many thanks. I like the UC Davis one best because it serves as a great recap of what we already thought was true. The information continues to get better and consequently we have to update our surmises continually, and it's good to see the latest studies and consensuses are holding true to what we have been acting on for months now. All good.

The LA Times article brings to the fore this aspect of viral load. That's a relatively new piece that we've only learned in the last month or two, and it's really uplifting to see this mainstream news level focus on this factor and explain it. Viral load is perhaps the greatest factor (after masks) of the whole examination of how we live and conduct ourselves for safety during this pandemic.


Gravity. I'm in the mood to investigate this difference between what we believe and what we accept as true. Why do we even have this distinction?

The trolls were useful to observe in a group because their approach was the same. They were trying to reject mask-wearing from their beliefs rather than from what they accepted as true.

I suspect you are the same as me in that we spend a lot of time perfecting our beliefs, and even cherishing them - and yet when the virus strikes, we create a new body of knowledge that is separate from our beliefs. Our beliefs can come around to accommodate these facts later, at our convenience, after we survive, if we survive.

I haven't allowed my beliefs to interfere in my receptivity to emerging facts from the field during this pandemic, and I'm sure you haven't either. How does this happen?

Is it something to do with having a belief system that is continually being refined, versus a belief system that is finished and not subject to further refinement?

Someone up-thread (apologies for not knowing who) said that people have philosophies they spend time working on and articulating, and others have a grab-bag of opinions with no connecting coherence - or something like that. So is this the key to why people reject the facts coming in and remain fixed with their view of reality? I don't mean to be mean to anyone. But I hope I honor the truth far above correctness, and this seems to be a clue.

I'm sure you have an opinion. Your gravity comment actually is probably all the answer we need to this question. I felt like expanding on it, although you probably said it all already, and concisely to boot.

So - to turn it into doctrine - does all this show that we have to have beliefs that are subject to refinement from emerging facts, rather than facts that are allowed to emerge only subject to beliefs?

Posted by: Grieved | Jul 19 2020 6:19 utc | 181

Older Children Spread the Coronavirus Just as Much as Adults, Large Study Finds
The study of nearly 65,000 people in South Korea suggests that school reopenings will trigger more outbreaks.

A large new study from South Korea offers an answer: Children younger than 10 transmit to others much less often than adults do, but the risk is not zero. And those between the ages of 10 and 19 can spread the virus at least as well as adults do.

The findings suggest that as schools reopen, communities will see clusters of infection take root that include children of all ages, several experts cautioned.

“I fear that there has been this sense that kids just won’t get infected or don’t get infected in the same way as adults and that, therefore, they’re almost like a bubbled population,” said Michael Osterholm, an infectious diseases expert at the University of Minnesota.

“There will be transmission,” Dr. Osterholm said. “What we have to do is accept that now and include that in our plans.”

This is what you get when you don't wait for the science...

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Jul 19 2020 9:07 utc | 182

Posted by: Grieved | Jul 19 2020 6:19 utc | 182 I haven't allowed my beliefs to interfere in my receptivity to emerging facts from the field during this pandemic, and I'm sure you haven't either. How does this happen? Is it something to do with having a belief system that is continually being refined, versus a belief system that is finished and not subject to further refinement?

Well, in my case, I don't think I have any beliefs that conflict with the fact of a pandemic. So probably that latter in my case. I don't need to refine my belief system, in terms of the basics anyway - although of course I continually refine my knowledge and am prepared to refine my beliefs should they be contradicted by facts. But at this stage of my philosophical development, my philosophy can pretty much handle anything that's thrown at it.

Or of course, I'm deluding myself like everyone else. LOL

"Someone up-thread (apologies for not knowing who) said that people have philosophies they spend time working on and articulating, and others have a grab-bag of opinions with no connecting coherence - or something like that."

That was me - and you got it exactly. I spent a lot of time while in the joint going through everything I thought I knew and breaking it down to logical reasoning based on what I considered to be bottom-line facts about human history, human psychology, human economic behavior (a la the Austrian School - all human behavior is economics and vice versa, aside from basic human psychology), physical facts of the world and more. Then I reasoned up to what made sense.

But I had a long history even before that. As I mentioned before, I started out as an Ayn Rand Objectivist, discovered anarchism from a publication called "The Libertarian Connection" back in the '70s, then on to people like Robert Anton Wilson, Timothy Leary, William S. Burroughs, Nietzsche, many of the classic anarchists, martial arts readings ('80s ninja philosophy from Steven Hayes was a find),etc. - in short, iconoclasts on all sides of the philosophical spectrum. I was an agnostic for a long time, then reasoned out that religion was based on human psychology, because we understand the history of religious beliefs, and there was zero logical reason to believe in a physical deity, so atheism made more sense. On the side, I studied things like insurgencies and guerrilla war, military history, and much more.

All of this rattled around in my head until I sat down and organized it from what I considered first principles of facts of history, observation of human behavior during my life, etc.

I continue to refine the details - but basically from where I'm at now, I can figure out what I believe are the "correct" approaches to most issues. I *still* have problems applying that to my personal life. But I'm getting better at that. A little late at 71, but, hey, better late than never.

"So is this the key to why people reject the facts coming in and remain fixed with their view of reality? I don't mean to be mean to anyone. But I hope I honor the truth far above correctness, and this seems to be a clue."

I honor *factual correctness* over any "belief system." That's the key - intellectual integrity. Which is based on reason and logic. And that's something most people simply don't have. Not that I'm perfect at that, no one is. It's a matter of degree. The Bell Curve says fifty percent of the population is dumber than the other fifty percent - that has policy implications, as someone once said. It applies to philosophical organization as well.

"So - to turn it into doctrine - does all this show that we have to have beliefs that are subject to refinement from emerging facts, rather than facts that are allowed to emerge only subject to beliefs?"

As I say, it's an issue of intellectual integrity. People need to be taught to understand from a young age that facts and logic matter over emotion. And that's something you just don't see in the educational system until at least college (and depending on courses taken, maybe not even then.)

Then on top of being *taught*, people need to be *trained* to emotional control. I've always felt that children should be trained in martial arts rather than ordinary sports, because martial arts teaches you to control your emotions while under stress - real stress, not just losing a game - which is probably the most important lesson one can learn: dealing with the fear of death (and social ostracism which from a social evolution perspective is the equivalent) which is inbuilt in human nature.

Again, I get ticked off too easily, so I'm not good at that, either. But my first instinct is to *figure out* what's going on rather than react in some knee-jerk way.

But as I keep repeating, none of that - changing the educational system, training children to think better than their parents, altering the social and political system to enable those things - is going to happen. So the downward spiral is going to continue socially, politically and economically.

There's a book called "The Psychopath's Bible: For the Extreme Individual", written by Christopher S. Hyatt, a psychotherapist and occultist. It's a book on how to manipulate people and events for one's own benefit. A couple quotes from that book might illustrate my opinion of how things are going to go:

It is important to reinforce the notion that the Toxick Magician is not the cause of human suffering. Human suffering is the norm. Being numb to the depth
of this suffering is normal. Being unaware of the stupidity of life is a necessary defense for the survival of this particular species. The Manipulator
is fully aware that anyone who accepts and adapts to this stupidity is not a member of the futures to come and is nothing more than a breeding machine for
more slaves. The Practitioner didn't invent the human condition. He is only taking advantage of it by helping others get what they want. The human condition
is simply slavery - a repeition of species behavior from one generation to the next. The difference between humans and other organisms is that there appear to
be more wild card possibilities - and this includes the complete annihilation of the species.

The Toxick Magician accepts these fundamentals and doesn't lament. Instead, he helps the species to replace itself with something better, something more
flexible, something stronger, something immortal. This will require the death of billions of people, and/or the leaving of this particular planet. Whatever it
takes, the Practitioner is constantly preparing himself both in attitude and information. However, he is not fooled like some by man's inventions or
cleverness in certain areas. He is completely aware that man uses all his inventions to further his primitive nature and that to wait for evolution to
catch up is pure folly. He attempts to force life to speed up the process of evolution - even if it costs him his own life - but he only does this out of

Democracy is the best political system of slavery ever invented. In a democracy, the slaves believe they are "free" and have a "voice" in their affairs. Thus,
they are willing slaves and, as such, the possibility of a revolt is much less than in an overt system of slavery. This simple fact is supported by the number
of books which have been written about self-esteem. The desired results are impossible to obtain since a slave can only have false self-esteem. And even
this is a theft accomplished by identifying with his master. There are no free people, only slaves who have more privileges than others. Even the masters are
slaves to their greed and terror. Control over the lives of millions doesn't free one from having to pay the price. There are no real successes in this world
as we are all bound in the brotherhood of death. If you have to die, you have failed...

Understanding the origin of human behavior is like looking for a place to land a plane when the earth below is covered by a huge, thick cloud. Human behavior makes no sense from a hedonic point of view, nor does it make sense from any alternative idea. The human being is an unfinished entity, burdened by a strange set of cortical and sub-cortical processes and a body which requires immense artifices to protect and assure it of its immortality...

Common man, as so many brilliant and stupid authors have noted, is simply a domesticated primate. And the zoo runs quite well most of the time until any of
the many zero hours is reached - at which time pandemonium breaks loose. While common man is domesticated, seething within him are all the necessary components
of destruction which allow him to be controlled, and, at the same time, allow him to be self-destructive. In this way, common man has the potential to act as
if he was a sower of discord and disobedience, but this remains well under control - except at certain times of the year and in certain places. Other than
pathological individuals, common man is nicely controlled by bouts of depression, temper tantrums, guilt, sorrow, terror and fear. The result of all
these emotions is that common man is nullified, which allows for his ability to perform the rather pathetic and puny tasks to which he and others have given significance.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Jul 19 2020 10:03 utc | 183

"Democracy", as practiced in the West, is simply a mechanism that reduces to a manageable count the total number of individuals in a society that the capitalists must buy off in order to maintain control of that society. Of course, this is enabled by the fact that in a capitalist society everything is a commodity, which naturally includes all politicians.

George Bernard Shaw: (to woman seated next to him at an elegant dinner party) "Would you sleep with me for ten million dollars?"

Woman: (giggles and responds): "Oh, George, of course I would."

GBS: "How about doing it for fifteen dollars?"

Woman (indignant): "Why, what do you think I am?"

GBS: "That’s already been established. Now we’re just haggling about the price."

It is funny because the point is valid. In capitalist society literally everyone is a whore. Some may prefer a different descriptor, such as prostitute, or escort, or journalist, but they are all still just whores. The only difference is price.

The point of western "democracy" is to reduce the number of whores that the capitalist must buy in order to end up with the reins of society in his hands. So long as you are the highest bidder the whores in Washington DC can be purchased for as little as a hundred grand or so each. That is pocket change for an oligarch. That's a real bargain when you need a massive military machine to crush some rebels trying to interfere with your right to extract blood profits from their families.

Posted by: William Gruff | Jul 19 2020 12:05 utc | 184

So let me get this straight. Kemp and his gang, aware that their hold on political power is menaced by demographic change, manufactures false data to support early reinfecting err I mean "reopening" which is likely to lead to more disease and death overall and disproportionately in the portion of the population that doesn't support him, and his gang. He's handing out "infected" data to exterminate a population. Reminds me of Jeffrey Amherst whose "legacy is controversial due to his expressed desire to exterminate the race of indigenous people during Pontiac's War, and his advocacy of biological warfare in the form of gifting blankets infected with smallpox as a weapon,[1] notably including at the Siege of Fort Pitt." per wiki. Shared intent, means, and method.

Posted by: Stephen Laudig | Jul 19 2020 12:25 utc | 185

Rancourt, again...


You see, b, trolls never stop. You need to find his IP in the logs and ban him.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Jul 19 2020 13:37 utc | 186

I live in the central plains of the U.S. and for non-US residents it cannot be overstated the attitude of "Nobody tells me what to do!" The attitude is seen clearly from gun ownership rights all the way up to USG foreign interventions. This is the same group that praises the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, they don't remember how many years they have been doing that, they now have kids that are adults who think its always been that way. This is a country of individuals, it is clear we are not a community working together on anything. So much of what goes on here is designed to make and keep it that way. Why that is is a topic for another day.

Posted by: Oz | Jul 19 2020 14:03 utc | 187

Case counting in America......

Florida Man Who Died In Motorcycle Wreck Labeled As COVID-19 Death By State

Posted by: SwissArmyMan | Jul 19 2020 14:28 utc | 188

"There's a thesis among conservatives in the USA (and among the Americanized Latin American elites) that, if you create a propaganda environment where deaths by COVID-19 are acceptable, people will go back to work and consume as usual and the economy will not suffer at all, i.e. this crisis is psychological, not real."

One of the quirks of Trump's personality is his habitual use of superlatives, "fantastic", "perfect", "outstanding", "the best in American history", etc etc. This reflects his (mis)understanding of "positive thinking" which he inherited from his father, Fred Trump. Donald and Fred were both devotees of the dogma of "positive thinking" which they learned from Norman Vincent Peale, minister of the Marble Collegiate Church on 5th Ave in NYC. Peale is probably the best known latter day advocate of "New Thought", a metaphysical twist on traditional Christian beliefs that developed in the 19th Century in the US. It is not "conservative" politically, whatever conservative may mean, if anything at all.

Trumps attitude to the pandemic is shaped by his embrace of the doctrine preached by Peale. Another well-known advocate of New Thought is 20th Century author Napoleon Hill, whose magnum opus is titled "Think and Grow Rich". This is the point: what you think determines what outcomes you experience in your life. In Trump's little mind reality is a result of what you think. The pandemic is a psychological event. He refuses to talk about it. He complains that testing only makes it seem worse than it is. He claims repeatedly that is is just going to go away (probably because Sylvia Browne, renowned psychic, predicted it will), and he is currently attempting to suppress public knowledge of the pandemic by stopping data flow from the CDC. Trump is not merely a stupid man, he is, as his niece Mary claims, a dangerous man, because he is below his shallow surface a magical thinker.

People wonder why the religious right finds Trump so impressive. He represents a strong element in Christianity today that is not recognized by the left, which is largely rational and science-oriented and atheist a la Bill Maher. Georgia governor Kemp seems to mirror Trump's view. The idea that propaganda creates reality emerged during the Bush debacle (administration) that gave us the Iraq war. Christian "new thought" was part of the mental inventory in George Bush's little mind, too. Trump learned the mental discipline of rejecting negative thoughts from his daddy and now he is imposing it on the American people, or trying to.

This is not "conservative", vk, unless you believe authoritarian leaders who put themselves above the law, like those leaders Trump admires, Puten, fat boy, Bolsonaro, Erdogan, etc, are "conservative".

Posted by: jadan | Jul 19 2020 14:51 utc | 189

I would hope that the right-wing libertarians who are railing on this site about being made to wear masks by Big Government are equally incensed by what's going on in Portland right now, with Trump's storm troopers grabbing protesters off the streets and disappearing them like death squads in Central America. But probably not.

Posted by: JPM | Jul 19 2020 15:09 utc | 190

Posted by: jadan | Jul 19 2020 14:51 utc | 190

Excellent points. I am inclined to agree that Trump is a "magical thinker". This is what one gets when one is raised in a "religious" mindset, whether that is conventional organized religion or some other belief system.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Jul 20 2020 2:29 utc | 191

@Den lille abe | Jul 20 2020 12:41 utc | 104

This has resulted in 77800 infected and 5619 deaths.

Note that more people have died from Covid-19 in Sweden (population: 10 million; deaths: 5900) than in China (population: 1400 billion; deaths: 4600). I do not consider the Swedish action a successful response to the epidemic.

But we did not have any lockdowns, and we do not use masks, and infection/death rate has almost come to a standstill.

It's early yet. The first wave of Covid-19 hasn't been very deadly. The first wave of the 1918 flu was also relatively mild ("just another flu"). However, the second wave of the Spanish Flu was fatal -- as was the third wave.

More waves of Covid-19 may yet arrive. What is certain is that the more people who become infected by the first wave, the more likely it is that a truly killer second wave will come.

Posted by: Cyril | Jul 20 2020 22:00 utc | 192

@Cyril | Jul 20 2020 22:00 utc | 192

Correction: "1400 billion" should be "1400 million".

Posted by: Cyril | Jul 20 2020 22:01 utc | 193

@Cyril | Jul 20 2020 22:00 utc | 192

Sorry, wrong thread.

Posted by: Cyril | Jul 20 2020 22:17 utc | 194

Especially @ john Wyne | Jul 18 2020 15:49 utc | 129

N95 Masks DO WORK, and the Proof is Available All Over the Net!

There has been so much oh-so-earnest and so much oh-so-authoritarian nonsense bruited about on this site about the non-effectiveness of the N95 masks that it's getting really, really tiresome. It also calls into question either the honesty (trolls?) or the intelligence of those who could so easily have just looked up the information from, and about the inventor of the N95, Dr. Peter Tsai.

If they had done just that little bit of research, they would have discovered that the N95 works because of an inner layer of plastic fiber that carries an electro-static charge that attracts and destroys the virus, and that can be cleansed and sterilized for re-use by a number of different techniques.

Please do not believe any of the contra-factual and sometimes dangerous nonsense being spewed about by people who don't know what the hell they're talking about.

Oh, and N95 masks are NOT “vented to breath straight out without filtration!” And as you can see below, the electric charge attracts even sub-micron particles, so the idea that the mask cannot trap viruses because they're too small is simply more nonsense from uninformed and/or deviously motivated individuals.


Just a small sample of information that's easily found all over the net:

Brief bio: Peter Tsai, Ph.D.
Employment: Research faculty, Joint Institute of Advanced Materials, The University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Expertise: Development of meltblowing (MB) systems and the electrostatic charging (EC) of materials for making air filter electrets. The MB and the EC developed by Tsai have been used in the industries worldwide making tens of billions of pieces of N95 respirators or face masks. He has received three prestigious awards from UT in recognition of his contribution to technology innovation. Tsai is a Fellow Member of American Filtration and Separation Society and a member of Electrostatic Society of America.

Peter Tsai and the Electrostatic Filter Mask
“Prof. Tsai's innovation was to find a way to take a cold pre-fabricated mat of non-woven material and subject it to two electric discharges of opposite polarity, one after the other.  Under the right conditions, this process embedded quasi-permanent electric charges into the plastic fibers and made them very attractive to even sub-micron particles, like the 100-nanometer-diameter SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19.  The charge is durable and will persist even if the masks are sterilized with steam, according to a new article that Prof. Tsai just put up on a University of Tennessee website.'

The retired inventor of N95 masks is back at work, mostly for free, to fight covid-19


More technical information for those curious enough:

Posted by: AntiSpin | Jul 21 2020 2:22 utc | 195

@AntiSpin | Jul 21 2020 2:22 utc | 195

Thanks for the info on N95 masks.
Makes me want to buy some, but all I see are probably ripoff prices.
Anybody know where they are available at reasonable cost?

Posted by: Cyril | Jul 21 2020 3:27 utc | 196

Posted by: Oz | Jul 19 2020 14:03 utc | 187

Boil the US culture down to the core and it's obvious that evasion of responsibility is the only true value Americans adhere to.

The so-called "universal values" are merely excuses for their endless hypocrisy.

Posted by: J W | Jul 21 2020 4:02 utc | 197

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