Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
July 09, 2020

The Pandemic Reveals The Real Disease Of Our Societies

This morning I saw this map on the Washington Post homepage.

Reported cases per 100,000 residents by county since last week


I immediately remembered that I had earlier seen a map with a similar pattern.

It was in my April 2 Moon of Alabama post. Here is the section as posted three months ago:


Charles M. Blow @CharlesMBlow - 11:51 UTC · Apr 2, 2020
My god, I see a disaster brewing
#COVID19Pandemic #RacialTimeBomb


It is quite obvious from the maps that areas where more people of color live are hit much harder by Covid-19 than other areas.

A British study published in Nature which used health care data of 17 million people pseudonymously linked to some 11,000 Covid-19 deaths found that people of color in Britain are much more likely to die of Covid-19:

Compared with people with white ethnicity, Black and South Asian people were at higher risk even after adjustment for other factors (HR 1.48, 1.30–1.69 and 1.44, 1.32–1.58, respectively).

A 'Hazard Ratio' (HR) of 1.48 means that these people were 48% more likely to die of the disease than the average person.

A similar observation has been made in U.S. meat processing plants:

More than 16,200 U.S. meat plant workers had tested positive for Covid-19 by the end of May and 86 had died, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in a report Tuesday. [..] Of the cases that disclosed race and ethnicity, 87% involved minority workers -- with employees identified as Hispanic accounting for 56% of infections despite making up less than a third of the overall workforce.

There is no biological difference between various ethnicities with regards to Covid-19. There is no scientific theory that attributes this to any other causes than social issues - i.e. low income, bad housing and lack of access to care.

This is an issue of class, not of identity. Black and Hispanic people happen to be in the lowest one. Unfortunately neither the British nor the CDC study have parameters that cover income or other social indicators. I am sure that they would otherwise show that deprived white people have the same chance to die of Covid-19 as deprived non-white people living in similar circumstances.

Yes, there is a racial wage gap in the United States. But the real gap is between productivity growth and wage growth. Throughout the last decades neither black nor white workers have seen substantial wage raises. This is a class issue.


This gap between increased productivity and wage gain at the bottom did not exist until the late 1970s when neo-liberal ideologues under Reagan and Thatcher introduced economic policies that favored the top 1%:

From 1979 to 2018, net productivity rose 69.6 percent, while the hourly pay of typical workers essentially stagnated—increasing only 11.6 percent over 39 years (after adjusting for inflation). This means that although Americans are working more productively than ever, the fruits of their labors have primarily accrued to those at the top and to corporate profits, especially in recent years.


Identity policies around ethnicity, gender or sexual preference are instrumental in hiding the real disease of our societies. Class differences have become extreme. The rich have become much richer while those at the bottom have gained nothing. 

The pandemic exposes the deadly consequences of these policies. 


It is likely that Trump started his campaign to urgently end the lockdown after he noticed that the outbreak in New York mostly hit the black underclass. Those weren't his people. But that thinking is wrong. An epidemic, once let off to run its cause, will not differentiate. The poor will be hit first. But the virus will not stop with them. One wonders how long it will take him to get that.

Posted by b on July 9, 2020 at 17:32 UTC | Permalink

« previous page

Just what are these bozos really trying to pull here?
We, the American People who can both read and count while actually thinking, patiently await their next offering of brilliant awesomefull super specialness.

Posted by: Joshua | Jul 10 2020 17:16 utc | 101

@Joshua #99-101
Your math is off. If average annual mortality is 723 per 100K population, then nCOV mortality of 411 per million is 4.7%.
But more importantly, it is additional mortality.
The US bombed the shit out of multiple nations over 3000 dead Americans...what about 130,000+?
The issue has never been that nCOV isn't a health problem.
The issue is: what is the tradeoff between minimizing (if possible, not clear) nCOV deaths vs. the economic damage - both temporary and permanent?
Where is the debate?
Neither side is particularly coherent:
nCOV isn't a problem = stupid, and
nCOV is the Black Death and we must shut everything down = equally stupid.

Posted by: c1ue | Jul 10 2020 17:33 utc | 102

While it is easy to interpret the data as being caused by race I think the larger factor is based on the US not having a public health insurance which covers everyone. Other countries also have large disparities between rich and poor but are not doing as bad as the US because these countries have health care for all.

Posted by: ARI | Jul 10 2020 17:36 utc | 103

One other note: The WP posting is misleading for many reasons, not least of which is that there are a lot of small counties in the South and SouthEast.
Here is a map of US counties - note that just putting a dot in every one would automatically make the South/SE looks worse than the West or even Northeast: County map of US
The super dense NY area gets compressed into almost invisibility, on contrast.
Just another case of lying by omission.

Posted by: c1ue | Jul 10 2020 17:39 utc | 104

There is a racial difference in that blacks and people of color are vitamin D deficient, as are the elderly.

Vitamin D linked to low virus death rate, study finds
New COVID-19 research finds relationship in data from 20 European countries

Posted by: jean | Jul 10 2020 17:59 utc | 105

Posted by: BM | Jul 10 2020 16:46 utc | 96

I have not seen any paper on the differences between ACE2 cells of blacks and caucasians

And you will not see them for sure. Because classifying people to 'blacks', 'caucasians' and other 'races' is a pseudo-scientific bullshit cooked up by ruling classes in Western Europe to justify their imperialistic conquests and keeping conquered people down. American oligarchs adopted this pseudo theory to justify the extermination of indigenous population and to justify slavery while still maintaining the myth that they are the land of freedom and justice for all.
It is a simple and dirty trick in three steps:
Step one: Divide people into subtupes based on how they look, or speak, or whatever.
Step two: proclaim that your subtype is supreme, and other ones are inferior.
Step three: America is great because America is good: for the supreme race, descendants of hillbillies from Caucasus mountain rofl.
Why you Americans are buying into, and putting up with this 'race' bullshit is surreal.

Speaking about Caucasus maintain. One of the hardest hit regions in Russia by Covid-19 is Dagestan. But the neighboring Chechnya is doing quite well.
Explain that using your 'caucasians' vs 'blacks' claptrap.

Posted by: hopehely | Jul 10 2020 18:02 utc | 106

For commenters who've remarked on the incidences of (a) obesity, (b) diabetes and (c) high blood pressure - other cardiovascular ailments (not sure anyone referred to [c] but it's on most lists), these are all ultimately rooted in poverty / stress.

For commenters who remarked on the "Southern" diet and McDonald's food, many urban neighborhoods and poor rural counties are food deserts, period. The urban elite in the South (Black and white alike) have diets that resemble those of residents of Manhattan.

For the commenter who remarked on the absence of a national health care program in the U.S. - yes, this is a major contributing factor but it's further complicated by other intersecting forms of injustice which contribute to the heightened risk for Blacks who contract the virus.

The premise of the OP is correct in my view, and the post correctly concludes the Identity Politics is being used (by both sides) to mask the real disease.

Posted by: dbk | Jul 10 2020 18:05 utc | 107

I must applaud b for finally bringing in the Class War into his COVID-19 analysis. What you are genetically isn't the main factor; rather, it's your socio-economic--CLASS--status that matters most regarding your potential exposure to the disease. Activists within the Outlaw US Empire have pointed to that fact going back to March, and it's certainly a big factor fueling the ongoing protests.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jul 10 2020 18:34 utc | 108

There is no biological difference between various ethnicities with regards to Covid-19. There is no scientific theory that attributes this to any other causes than social issues. b wrote.

In the US ‘race’ and ‘ethnicity’ are endlessly touted to divide and rule, through fakelorum ‘identity politics.’ It is absurd. Class issues are not just ignored, but are subsumed into deceptive categories (“hispanic”, “black”, etc., who are ‘poorer’, etc.)

Note, heh, that some ‘poorer’ countries and ‘poorer ppl’ and ‘ppl who are not white’ have managed to keep deaths close to insignificant - e.g. Cuba, Taiwan, Vietnam, Thailand, where for ex. France and the US have not - but the story is not over (see e.g. Mexico and Brazil death rates today.) Of course, the standard arguments are, this has to do with ‘preparedness’ and ‘obedience’ and ‘lockdowns’ and other governance / social functioning and measures.

However, it is possible that some ‘intrinsic’ (usually called ‘genetic’ today) characteristics / -s, play a role in susceptibility. (Personally I think all this is marginal but it shouldn’t be dismissed out of hand, as it may provide clues to what is going on.)

For ex. Caliman @ 9 brings up vit. D (clear link with skin color), but then drags in social habits (not ‘genetic’ but ‘social’) like diet.

Certain: Men die (at all ages, incl. low teens) more than women, in much of the world, afaik.

In many places in the world, there are more F cases, because they have *smiley* jobs such as cashiers, receptionists, teachers, nurses, nail salons, cleaners, cleaners again, cooks, prostitution, street vendor, clothing factory worker, etc.

Yet deaths are massively more M, even without taking ‘job’ into account, which is arduous of course, hasn’t been done properly imho (?) .. 1

This must be in some way ultimately related to ‘genetics.’ Yes, the F/M distinction is a bit of a cheat, hm, I intend it only as an example of a ‘sure’ genetic diff, it can provide info, clues.

Most likely androgen hormones don’t have a positive effect, the mechanisms can be speculated about..(dozens of med. papers..) Note women live longer and die less of ‘flu’ and colds since forever.

Men are not poorer than women (the diff is massive), men aren’t discrimated against in the health system, men have more power to demand top health care, and so on, all social indicators go bleep-bleep for men.. Yet they are more affected (serious cases) and die more.

1. Until the age of 80 or more .. (Switz, France), because after that age, more women are left alive and thus can die, the men mostly died off before age 80, or so, whatever…

Posted by: Noirette | Jul 10 2020 19:06 utc | 109

@ Posted by: Noirette | Jul 10 2020 19:06 utc | 109

The reason we can't do such generalizations with human beings lies in the fact that it is forbidden to do experiments with humans.

The only data we have regarding human beings is with drug trials made with volunteers and sweeping, statistical data we have gathered over decades and decades in the database of national healthcare systems.

Actual scientific demonstration is very rare in the medicine field (think about the Pasteur demonstration). Even modern drugs (e.g. anti-allergic) have their efficacy only indirectly demonstrated by the drug company that licensed it, through statistical evidence, with unknown biochemical mechanism. They just do blind trials and pray the drug works - this is evidenced by the fact many drugs we have today were originally designed to cure cancer or AIDS and, not to lose the investment, the pharmaceutical refurbished it as an anti-something else when, during the same trial, it is somewhat discovered it somewhat treats said disease or medical condition.

You can't just pick one random black man and one random white man on the street and conclude some medical condition happens more to black men than to white men etc. There are simply too many variables involved among the individuals, and a too great genetic pool (almost 8 billion specimens).

When taking into account sweeping generalizations in the medical field, one must also take into account the cultural factor. One famous example is the virtual nonexistence of autoimmune diseases in poor countries. You also have to take into account the sexual division of labor, cultural division between the sexes etc. etc.

Posted by: vk | Jul 10 2020 19:18 utc | 110

@ 76 jen... the cool thing about the movie is it was an attempt at a fairly neutral read on the influence of the chicago boys and the cia... obviously some will see it strongly one way or the other, but the movie attempted to be somewhat neutral in it's depiction of it all.. i watched it all last night.. thanks for pointing it out to us!

@ 109 noirette.. good comments.. thanks..

Posted by: james | Jul 10 2020 19:56 utc | 111

Actually, there is a difference distinctly related to race: vitamin D deficiency, which is closely linked to increased severity of infection with COVID-19. This has to do with skin pigmentation. The darker the skin, the more exposure to sunlight a person needs to absorb adequate amounts of vitamin D. In northern latitudes, this is quite difficult for people with dark skin. And it has been shown for many years that African Americans are chronically short of D. Meanwhile, many countries that have controlled the spread of the virus and kept the death rates down are sunny southern countries where people spend a lot of time outdoors.

Posted by: Pelham | Jul 10 2020 20:06 utc | 112

To be honest, I really don’t give a fuck about blacks. That’s why I have always practiced social distancing from them.

American blacks are that child who has always been told that he’s special, nothing is his fault and everyones out to get him. Now the child is a dysfunctional adult. And the rest of us has to put up with his shit.

Posted by: Kevin | Jul 10 2020 20:12 utc | 113

Every pathology that can be avoided by personal responsibility is worse with blacks. Highest rates of STDs, HIV, illegitimate births, murder. They won’t wear a condom and you expect them to wear a mask?

Posted by: Kevin | Jul 10 2020 20:18 utc | 114

I'm surprised no one has mentioned Vitamin D. Scientists have discovered that if you paint your face orange like DJT, you can absorb 100 times the daily dose of Vitamin D and it can be any light source, not jus the sun. Fat Orange Donny is overflowing with Vitamin D and thus is immune from COVFEFE-19. The solution is clear and obvious. Black folk need to go Orange Face. Everyone does. Trump could corner the market on this shit is he patents it NOW.

Posted by: | Jul 10 2020 20:22 utc | 115


Wow, speaking of masks, your mask has come off, hasn't it? In my neck of the woods, black folk are ten times more responsible than white folk when it comes to wearing masks at least.

Posted by: | Jul 10 2020 20:25 utc | 116

@kevin > ... that child who has always been told that he’s special, nothing is his fault and everyones out to get him.

Sounds rather like the small but rather loud subset of white Americans, convinced they're better yet always claiming to be victimized by society.

Posted by: ptb | Jul 10 2020 20:51 utc | 117

I'm with you, just wow.

Posted by: Digital Spartacus | Jul 10 2020 20:52 utc | 118

The irony of Kevin the Troll's comment @113 is all humans come from Africa and thus have far more "blackness" lying under their skin than any other hue. The logical outcome for that cretin is he'll have to keep away from himself. Seldom have I read anyone admitting that degree of ignorance on this site, although many have come close.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jul 10 2020 21:02 utc | 119


yeah check all those online videos of (not) black americans loudly proclaiming how they are so special they don't need masks...

Posted by: tspoon | Jul 10 2020 21:05 utc | 120

WHO says it's 'very unlikely' countries can eradicate the coronavirus right now

Looks like the Western peoples will have to keep kissing the floor and beg for mercy.

Posted by: vk | Jul 10 2020 21:16 utc | 121

I do not agree with the part about Trump noticing the effect of Covid on Black people.

For Trump, Covid is just another impending bankruptcy. He will position himself so everyone involved has to save (re-elect) him or they will lose even more.

For the upper classes Covid is just another large scale event to be manipulated for profit. Isolating and protecting the upper classes is what the talking point of protecting the vulnerable really means.

I will give credit to the "this is the common cold/get to herd immunity" people in the US. If you have to be part of the sacrifice for the wealthy it is best to be sleeping alongside Grandpa instead of screaming like all the other passengers.

Posted by: Randy | Jul 10 2020 21:20 utc | 122

Please don’t get me fired from my cubicle job.

Posted by: Kevin | Jul 10 2020 21:33 utc | 123

@tspoon - If what you say is true, does it mean that masks don’t work? Are you some kind of covid denier?

Posted by: Kevin | Jul 10 2020 21:35 utc | 124

New cases in the US reach all time high at 66k, huge spike in hospitalisations to 51k, hospitalisations back to April/May levels. Expect a further spike in death rate too.

Posted by: Passer by | Jul 10 2020 22:20 utc | 125

I don't know if this report is true, but *if* it is - we may be looking at a *more deadly* strain of the virus...

‘Unknown pneumonia’ deadlier than coronavirus sweeping Kazakhstan, Chinese embassy warns

Statement from embassy warns that death rate is ‘much higher’ than coronavirus and says local authorities have yet to identify cause

Kazakh authorities have reimposed Covid-19 lockdown in some parts of the country amid a spike in pneumonia cases last month

While the Chinese embassy described the illness as an “unknown pneumonia”, Kazakhstani officials and media have only said it is pneumonia.

It was not clear why the Chinese embassy had described the illness as “unknown” or what information it had about the pneumonia.

At the moment, I'd say this is anecdotal. But given the possibility that this virus could mutate into a deadlier form, it behooves us to be alert for any sign that it has mutated into a form deadlier than the version we are currently experiencing. This is what happened in the 1918 pandemic. Supposedly this virus is alleged to mutate more slowly. I'm not an expert on virus mutations, but that's what I've read. Nonetheless, we know there are at least *eight* separate clades of this virus already and it has been *speculated* that accounts for the difference in death rates in places like New York vs elsewhere.

So we need to keep an eye on what's happening in Kazakhstan.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Jul 10 2020 22:43 utc | 126

Trump is a threat to the whole world...

‘It Was Like a Time Bomb’: How ICE Helped Spread the Coronavirus
An investigation by The New York Times and The Marshall Project reveals how Immigration and Customs Enforcement became a spreader of the coronavirus.

Even as lockdowns and other measures have been taken around the world to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, ICE has continued to detain people, move them from state to state and deport them.

An investigation by The New York Times in collaboration with The Marshall Project reveals how unsafe conditions and scattershot testing helped turn ICE into a domestic and global spreader of the virus — and how pressure from the Trump administration led countries to take in sick deportees....

So far, the governments of 11 countries have confirmed that deportees returned home with Covid-19.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Jul 10 2020 22:49 utc | 127

This should be common knowledge by now. I assumed that was the case based on my reading back in April. This is why I ordered masks from China back then. Now I've got 14 masks I can rotate over two weeks to insure I never re-use an infected mask more than one day.

The WHO Acknowledges That Covid-19 Can Be Airborne Indoors

While the WHO maintains that Covid-19 is primarily spread through large droplets expelled from the nose and mouth that are breathed in when people come into close contact, it acknowledged that aerosol transmission indoors “cannot be ruled out,” echoing Allegranzi’s statement. By choosing this language, the WHO recognizes that indoor transmission is possible but avoids directly stating that it’s known to occur — a very different statement than that made by the group of 239 experts.

In other words, they're still being wishy-washy about it.

The actual question is: what is the *percentage* of people being infected by droplets vs aerosols vs fomites (viral deposits on surfaces)? I don't think anyone knows that. there have been estimates, but I've seen no actual research data, probably because it would be very hard to acquire data from real situations.

And in essence, it's irrelevant. One has to do whatever is practical to be protected from all forms of transmission. Which means wash hands frequently (and longer than this 20 seconds nonsense), apply hand sanitizer frequently, wear a mask, stay away from people, and disinfect frequently used surfaces.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Jul 10 2020 23:00 utc | 128

This article was referenced in an earlier post by someone, but it needs to be emphasized for its content and embedded links.

19 Truths We Must Face About Covid-19

In reporting on the coronavirus since January, I’ve interviewed dozens of infectious-disease researchers, epidemiologists and other scientists and health experts, and this much is crystal clear: The terrible situation we’re in now was widely, loudly and frequently predicted since very early on. Many U.S. political leaders didn’t listen then. If they don’t listen now, it will just get worse. At least, that’s what the experts say. Here’s a review of lessons not learned, the foibles that got us here, and the sad fact about who must take responsibility to change the course of the growing pandemic.

One of Britt's articles referenced in his current piece needs to be emphasized for the fools who say the death rate is falling.

Covid-19 is as Deadly and Dangerous as Ever
Hospitalizations are rising, the daily death toll is creeping back up, and “the virus is as lethal as ever,” scientists say

While daily count national deaths had been declining, that’s because there had previously been a long decline in new infections, as New York and other states most affected early on in the pandemic got their curves heading down. With new cases surging in other states and the national total at an all-time—more than 60,000 today—there’s simply a lag in hospitalizations and deaths, the Harvard researchers said.

The *morons* here who deny these truths need to *STFU* and *GTFO*.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Jul 10 2020 23:08 utc | 129

You want to talk "death rates" and "how many months of life you lose"?

Official Covid-19 Statistics Are Missing Something Critical
Even if you recover from Covid-19, you may not escape unscathed

Morbidity can happen over a long-term period, so it is a harder variable to study and track in the early stages of a pandemic than death. Anecdotal reports and early data, though, show that Covid-19 morbidity may be a very real concern. According to a report in The Atlantic which followed several people with Covid-19 over multiple months, many had long-lasting symptoms and impairments (including headaches and debilitating fatigue) that didn’t resolve when their active infection stopped.

All of these cases were considered “mild” and didn’t result in the use of a ventilator or a stay in the ICU. And they occurred in people from a variety of age groups, not only older adults and the infirm. Yet despite these “low risk” factors, patients were still experiencing major impacts from the disease months after contracting it...

Even more concerning is emerging data showing that “asymptomatic” Covid-19 infections can cause long-term damage. Recent studies, including one published in Nature Medicine, have found “ground-glass opacities” in the lungs of asymptomatic carriers of Covid-19 — evidence of inflammation which could be causing damage internally, even if the patient feels completely fine.

And although earlier evidence suggested that children are less affected by the disease, the emergence of a new condition, Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome, suggests that the virus may be having longer-term impacts even on the young. MSIS symptoms can emerge weeks or months after the original infection and can be deadly without prompt treatment.

Bottom line: If you catch this thing, *you are screwed*. The only question is *how* screwed: Enough to make you dysfunctional or enough to kill you sooner than you would otherwise have died.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Jul 10 2020 23:15 utc | 130

You are exactly right that this is a class issue - although "liberal" commentators are trying to spin this as an example of "structural racism".

I would bet that if you looked at health outcomes in well-to-do black people living in upscale communities, and compare them with white people in those same communities, would you think they would be notably poorer? I wouldn't. Outright racism is FAR rarer in the US now than 60 years ago, and the few true racists tend to be half-wits lacking in any societal power (other than the capacity to perpetrate the occasional mass murder).

Posted by: Mark McCarty | Jul 10 2020 23:17 utc | 131

This Is What Happens When You Can’t Trust Official Coronavirus Advice
The U.S. has formal and informal coronavirus guidance — and it’s confusing and dangerous

South Korea’s success, for example, has been largely credited to the work the country has done to build a culture of political accountability after past pandemics, which has been important for getting public buy-in for lockdown and distancing measures. In Greece, Sotiris Tsiodras, the Greek Health Ministry’s spokesperson and an infectious disease expert, gives daily briefings and, through empathy and data-sharing, has gained widespread trust and affection. A recent poll declared him the most popular Greek today.

President Donald Trump, on the other hand, contradicts and outright criticizes American scientists who have experience in responding to pandemics. He recently lambasted the guidelines to reopen schools developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and he rarely allows scientists at the organization to speak to the public. The U.S. is also pulling its funding of the World Health Organization, the implication being that the U.S. believes the organization has mishandled the response. For those who like President Trump, these moves might be considered accountability for scientists that mishandled the epidemic and have put Trump’s presidency at risk. For critics, it’s yet another sign of the White House’s incompetence and blame-shifting in responding to the pandemic. Data shows that over 56% of Americans disapprove of Trump’s response to the pandemic — neatly tracking overall disapproval of his presidency as a whole. Taken together, there’s a deep mistrust that leaders at the highest levels of the U.S. government can keep people safe.

This week, New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu said he is supporting Trump’s upcoming rally in his state — and not requiring mask-wearing — but Sununu himself will not be attending. “I will not be in the crowd of thousands of people, I’m not going to put myself in the middle of a crowd of thousands of people, if that’s your question specifically,” he told CNN. “Unfortunately, you know, I have to be extra cautious as the governor, I try to be extra cautious for myself, my family.”

In other words, for the rulers, it's "fuck you, I'm saving myself" - like we didn't already know that.

Of course, as an individualist anarchist, I understand that position. As an anarchist, however, that's why I don't believe in the state. The state will *always* sacrifice its citizens - if it thinks it can get away with it. It boils down to how the leadership believes it should rule - with oppression - or deception - or both as circumstances dictate. In many countries, the state has to be careful. In the US, it doesn't - because US citizens are stupid, ignorant and fearful.

In some countries, Trump would already be out of office for his deliberate mishandling of the pandemic. Of course, given this is an election year, we might as well wait until November, since the VP wouldn't be any better, anyway. Unfortunately, neither will Biden. So the country will remain screwed.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Jul 10 2020 23:27 utc | 132

You want to talk "death rates", morons?

COVID-19 Cases Are Rising, So Why Are Deaths Flatlining?
The gap between soaring cases and falling deaths is being weaponized by the right to claim a hollow victory in the face of shameless failure. What’s really going on?

In the fog of pandemic, every statistic tells a story, but no one statistic tells the whole truth. Conservatives seeking refuge in today’s death counts may find, in a matter of days, that deaths are clearly resurging and their narrative is rapidly deteriorating. But liberals, too, should avoid the temptation to flatly reject any remotely positive finding, for fear that it will give succor to the president.

What follows are five possible explanations for the case-death gap. Take them as complementary, rather than competing, theories...

This is a good piece - it shows that all five explanations are probably at play. It some respects (doctors are getting better at treating the disease), it's good news. But given that the long-term effects of the virus aren't yet known, as referenced in an earlier post, it's not all good news - and it shouldn't be used as a reason to stop practical measures to defeat the virus.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Jul 10 2020 23:36 utc | 133

@126 rsh

I recently read that Kazakhstan is a key geopolitical space for the integration and development of the BRI. If, as Hr. Gruff specuLated earlier, we are in a biowarfare phase of Western imperialist financial monopoly capitalism, then this could be more of that. This is not what I read earlier — I’ll have to search for that elsewhere.

“...Stability and security in Kazakhstan and its neighborhood are fundamental to Chinese economic investment and long-term strategy. ..

“Kazakhstan is the only state in the region to have established an “all-around strategic partnership” with China. It is not only an invaluable supplier of energy and key mineral resources to China, but also a keen supporter of its securitization-oriented development of the Xinjiang Autonomous Region.

“Kazakhstan serves as a vital transit corridor linking China to Europe. It is crucial for China’s BRI strategy both as a supplier, particularly of oil and uranium, and as a transit country.”

Posted by: suzan | Jul 10 2020 23:43 utc | 134

The virus causes even more damage...and it's possible the lockdown has also acerbated it.

Broken Heart Syndrome Is Real — And the Pandemic Is Making It Worse

Broken heart syndrome is on the rise.

That’s according to a new study in JAMA Network Open that found 7.8% of Cleveland Clinic patients presenting with symptoms of a heart attack in March and April had the condition, also known as Takotsubo cardiomyopathy — up from 1.7% prior to the coronavirus.

“It’s about a four- to five-time increase,” says Grant Reed, MD, MSc, the senior author of the study. “If you extrapolate that over an entire country, there’s going to be many more patients coming in with this.”...

Japanese researchers first identified Takotsubo cardiomyopathy in 1990. The condition is characterized by a sudden physical or psychological stressor that likely releases a surge of hormones so strong it stuns certain heart muscles, preventing them from properly pumping blood. The weakened left ventricle balloons out — like an octopus in a takotsubo trap — and people experience chest pain, difficulty breathing, and even heart failure.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Jul 10 2020 23:43 utc | 135

Posted by: suzan | Jul 10 2020 23:43 utc | 133

Occam's Razor suggests a more mundane explanation - the virus may have mutated.

But anything is possible. I just need more evidence than that the US may benefit if Kazakhstan gets messed up. We'll see what develops. The entire story about a "deadlier coronavirus" may be completely incorrect. But we need to keep an eye on it.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Jul 10 2020 23:47 utc | 136

Kids may not die - but teachers do.

As Trump pushes to reopen schools, Arizona school leaders face more uncertainty

The school district's superintendent, Jeff Gregorich, said three teachers went above and beyond in taking precautions against the spread of the virus while teaching in the same room, but all three contracted COVID-19.

Kim Byrd, who started teaching the Hayden-Winkelman Unified School District in 1982, died.

Gregorich does not believe Arizona schools are ready to open and said Trump does not understand the magnitude of recent remarks insisting on reopening schools.

"The learning can be made up, but the lives will never be brought back," he said.

Trump couldn't care less - he simply wants to be re-elected - no matter how many die in the process.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Jul 10 2020 23:51 utc | 137

Lest we think that class only designates or involves black persons and white persons in rich or poor categories -- I know that's a stretch but I'm trying to find a way to include this link here, from Lambert's links at, (who have in fact included this post by b in today's links, thank you Lambert!). And this article I found extremely interesting and well written. So again I will just post the link to a Supreme Court article in two segments here.

It's a bit of good news that we should all celebrate, a coalition of which the Chief Justice is not a part has successfully upheld the Rule of Law!

Posted by: juliania | Jul 10 2020 23:55 utc | 138

Finally - an article that to some degree, at least, explains the *morons* here.

How Identity—Not Ignorance—Leads to Science Denial
Changing the minds of Covid-19 deniers may require a lot more than sound reasoning

“The people who deny science are often trying to uphold membership in something that they find meaningful,” says Nina Eliasoph, PhD, a professor of sociology at the University of Southern California. That meaningful thing could be a political or religious affiliation or some other group that prizes certain ideas or ideals. Whatever shape that group takes, the important thing is that it has other members — it’s a community.

Once a community absorbs an idea into its collective viewpoint, rejecting that idea becomes akin to rejecting the whole community, Eliasoph says. And that sort of rejection is a very, very difficult thing for any of its members to do. “This is why you talk with people who deny science and the goalposts are always changing,” she says. “What really matters is the membership in the thing that has meaning, and to keep that membership you have to ignore certain ideas and pay attention to others.”

Yeah - membership in the *morons club*.

But guess what? The article also discusses what I've been talking about here for weeks: cognitive dissonance.

Why do people do this? Experts say that our aversion to cognitive dissonance is one explanation. “Cognitive dissonance is a negative emotional state characterized by discomfort or tension, or maybe feelings of anxiety or guilt, that’s produced from beliefs or behaviors that are inconsistent with one another,” says April McGrath, PhD, an associate professor of psychology at Mount Royal University in Canada who has published work on cognitive dissonance. For example, a person who believes the planet is warming may also want to drive a gas-guzzling SUV, and these competing interests create cognitive dissonance...

Because cognitive dissonance is unpleasant, people tend to want to get rid of it. And McGrath says that there are generally two ways that people can do this: change a behavior — that is, ditch the SUV for an electric vehicle — or change a belief. Most people go with option B. “Changing a behavior is usually difficult because most behaviors are rewarding,” she says. Changing a belief is often easier, and that’s where some element of denial comes into play. “This could mean trivializing the source of the dissonance” — telling yourself that switching to an electric car won’t make any difference in the grand scheme — “or adding some new belief or idea that supports or rationalizes your choice,” she says. The latter could entail embracing conspiracy theories that argue climate-change consensus is some kind of nefarious ploy.

BINGO! As Don Rickles used to say, "you win a cookie!"

Bottom line: Cognitive dissonance occurs more frequently in *morons*. And people who deny the pandemic are *morons*.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Jul 10 2020 23:58 utc | 139

Richard Steven Hack @Jul10 23:58 #138

My problem with applying Hanlon's Razor in this case is that stupid people don't look for places like moa.

But moa has been constantly beset by trolls.

So most of those you call "morons" are probably trolls. That means they *intend* to spread the virus for any number of reasons. But we can rule out their pretended love of liberty because they fail to take the government to account in other matters.

My guess: they are paid by big Pharma or are Trump supporters responding to anti-China / pro-business / pro-White dog whistles.


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 11 2020 0:27 utc | 140

@134 rsh

The more you spam, the more I float over your posts like a gentle breeze.

Learn to compile, use shorter excerpts, and don't repeat yourself with every stinking covid study you post.

Posted by: NemesisCalling | Jul 11 2020 0:29 utc | 141

In reference to the Supreme Court article I link @ 137, I note that Justice Gorsuch, generally considered to be in the 'right' grouping of justices as compared to the 'left wing', mentions a 'common pattern of state violation of Native American enclaves'. This could be a turning point in the Court's ability to address many such violations, which could be called a real disease of US society it seems to me. And given that in Oklaholma the violations have caused nearly the entire reservation to have been sold to non-natives, even though unusually for the tribes, they and not the federal government had ownership of the land itself, I suppose the ruling will be specific to Oklahoma rather than applicable across the board.

But anyone more versed in such matters is welcome to chime in. I noted that 'Russia Today' has an entirely negative op ed on the subject - I can't really believe that site represents Russian views any longer; it seems to have been totally corrupted.

Posted by: juliania | Jul 11 2020 0:34 utc | 142

Here's a version of the same Court Ruling described in my 137 link that tells more about the case as well as gives some indication of what may develop therefrom:

Posted by: juliania | Jul 11 2020 0:54 utc | 143

Kevin @ 113 & 114 reveals the real disease of our societies...
May the gods help us...

Posted by: V | Jul 11 2020 1:08 utc | 144

b: "There is no biological difference between various ethnicities with regards to Covid-19. There is no scientific theory that attributes this to any other causes than social issues - i.e. low income, bad housing and lack of access to care."

There are big differences in vitamin D uptake.
And comordibity.
Which doesn't negate the importance of social issues, especially in comorbity (hypertension, diabetes 2, obesity, poor nutrition).
Still, effective prevention must deal with reality.

Posted by: Really?? | Jul 11 2020 1:54 utc | 145

suzan @ 22

In addition to the factors named is people's (over)use of sunscreen, instead of their exercising common sense when at the beach or out of doors so that they can benefit from sunshine without letting themselves get burned to a crisp.

As with the lockdown, the cure (overuse of sunscreen) is worse than the problem (skin cancers) because many other, worse, physical conditions result from vitamin D deficiency.

Posted by: Really?? | Jul 11 2020 2:10 utc | 146

Highest rates of STDs, HIV, illegitimate births, murder.

Kevin | Jul 10 2020 20:18 utc | 114:

I guess you didn't hear about the Tuskegee experiments. I would not be surprised to find out there are similar experiments today.

Posted by: Ian2 | Jul 11 2020 3:27 utc | 147

Yeah RT has turned into a FOX lite, full of "op-ed pieces" about the "liberals and their evils". Most likely RT is trying to show the West how they arent pro Russia, they even post articles against Biden and pro Trump. They posted lies about main in voting by somebody who claimed it will lead to cheating. I posted a comment pointing what a BS it was and the comment got promptly deleted. It was the time to leave and never come back. I can't believe what they have become. It's truly sad.

Posted by: Hoyeru | Jul 11 2020 4:25 utc | 148

I’ve gotta agree with the other naysayers.
This isn’t a very well thought out post by B.
What is it with corona and Bs posts?
It’s like someone else is writing them.

Ah, well.
I’ll still read along.
Carry on

Posted by: Cadence Calls | Jul 11 2020 4:40 utc | 149

You killed the real b didn't you?

Posted by: Jezabeel | Jul 11 2020 6:17 utc | 150

Posted by: Hoyeru | Jul 11 2020 4:25 utc | 147

Yeah RT has turned into a FOX lite, full of "op-ed pieces" about the "liberals and their evils".

Yeah, it is annoying, but that is just on RT English.
There are editions in Arabic, Spanish German, French and Russian available, and they are all different both in content and style. Take look and see if you like some of them more.

Posted by: hopehely | Jul 11 2020 6:29 utc | 151

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 11 2020 0:27 utc | 139 My guess: they are paid by big Pharma or are Trump supporters responding to anti-China / pro-business / pro-White dog whistles.

Well, that makes them morons, doesn't it? LOL

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Jul 11 2020 8:53 utc | 152

Posted by: NemesisCalling | Jul 11 2020 0:29 utc | 140 The more you spam, the more I float over your posts like a gentle breeze.

And the more you reveal yourself to be a moron, since the links I post are very good quality.

"Learn to compile, use shorter excerpts, and don't repeat yourself with every stinking covid study you post."

Learn to STFU and don't give me orders. b is the only person here who can tell me what I should post or not and he obviously has my email address - or he can simply delete the posts. Which so far he clearly hasn't wanted to do.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hackr | Jul 11 2020 8:56 utc | 153

You say "I have not seen any paper on the differences between ACE2 cells of blacks and caucasians" but neither do you provide one about the Chinese and Iranian populations one.
Here is a paper arguing against Asian particularity.
And here is one against the Iranian particularity

Here there is a reference to Cao et al. that argue for a difference, but I have not checked it (and leave it to the specialists here):
Both Iran and China are ancient countries that have seen millions of visitors and newcomers through ages, and they should not stand apart than any other places.

Posted by: Mina | Jul 11 2020 10:12 utc | 154

This gap between increased productivity and wage gain at the bottom did not exist until the late 1970s when neo-liberal ideologues under Reagan and Thatcher introduced economic policies that favored the top 1%:
I don't have links handy to dispute you, but the charts I've seen over twenty years have shown the discrepancy between productivity and wages starting in or before 1973 -- same general time period as the Powell Memo. Jimmy Carter, a very nice man, demonstrated the mind-set that Reagan and Thatcher promoted to the extreme, by deregulating the trucking and airline industries. You can thank him for the lack of leg room on the next flight you take.

Posted by: Procopius | Jul 11 2020 10:41 utc | 155

Yes, the pandemic reveals real diseases of our societies, amongst them the project by the international neo-nazi far-right for the take over of governments after testing that their "populist" disguise has not been succesful enough through "democratic elections" to grab power in an apparently legitimate way.

They are, obviously, the ones to profit from the coming socio-economic debacle and chaos. To see if these are not the people behind the pandemic origins...

Notice that while we, average people, get increasingly discouraged and despaired, without a prospect of a reasonable future, in the middle of the willing destruction of Western way of life of unknown porportions to date, with millions of people getting without any source of income and general economic collapse, neo-nazis´ future prospects grow non-stop, along with their unlimited funding...of course...Who are funding these people?

Sergei Korotkij, a key figure in the far-right Azov movement, has declared that the seed of the "new European way of life" will be sown in Ukraine.

The extremist organization and its related groups seek to spread across the continent and already integrate various nationalities.

Korotkij is a figure of great influence in Azov and with national and international projection. He has held positions in the Ukrainian Interior Ministry and is also responsible for the creation and financing of extremist groups in Russia and Belarus.

IMO, the chaos ongoing in the US will at certain point be tried to be exported to Europe and Russian bordering countries, to create the conditions for a far-right coup. To this end, I think irrelevant who wins the coming election in the US as this is a "deep state" project which every Us president serves faithfully since the 2014 nazi coup in the Ukraine....

It is an urgent task for elected European governments to isolate and neutralize terrorist far-right sleeping cells into their militaries and law enforcement forces and NATO.

Posted by: H.Schmatz | Jul 11 2020 11:36 utc | 156

The Covid 19 "crisis" in health care is clearly intentional. Keeping the disease going will keep the potential for corporate profit alive. A nice read is the role of the Gates Foundation in the WHO, which basically is a subsidiary of the foundation and the pharmaceutical companies the foundation has considerable financial interests in. This may be the real reason the US pulled out of the WHO (forget Trump, he is just the tool)

"In short, the (Gates) Foundation’s leadership in previous global health efforts displays an allegiance not to public health, but to the imperatives of Western capital. It prefers not to strengthen health systems, but to ensure nations remain dependent on Big Pharma and/or Big Agriculture for as long as possible. It is in this light the Gates’ leadership in the global fight against COVID-19 can be understood."
Gates has nearly monopolized the realm of public health policy, both nationally and internationally. “Fauci and I are in constant contact,” he has proclaimed, referring to the face of the U.S. COVID response, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Director Anthony Fauci. At the same time, the mega-billionaire is apparently talking to both CEOs of pharmaceutical companies and heads of government “every day".

While maintaining relationships with government organizations and the profit-driven private sector, the Gates Foundation has become perhaps the most influential player in the global COVID 19 response. So if the Foundation’s work has favored Western multinationals at the expense of public health in the past, why should anyone expect a different result this time?"

And this explains in a nutshell the US and UK response/non-response to the virus.

Posted by: Blue Dotterel | Jul 11 2020 11:58 utc | 157

What would be moronic would be listening to a supposed bank robber, supposed ex-con who is also a computer security tech. Who lives in an SRO. Supposedly. Who continuously spams and insults everyone.

There are effects and there are causes. When every effect under the sun is ascribed a priori to a single cause there is a moron in the picture.

Posted by: oldhippie | Jul 11 2020 11:58 utc | 158

On the diseases of our societies, interesting thread on unknown Chinese philosopher Mozi, author of "Against the Art of War" and equally unknown doctrine "Moism", strongly fought by traditionalist classist elites and rescued by Mao:

Mozi, a 5th century BC Chinese philosopher, founded a pacifist and strongly egalitarian school of thought, Moism, which for 2 centuries displaced Confucianism and Taoism as dominant schools, only to be forgotten until the 20th century. I open philosophical thread.

Mozi preached as a fundamental principle the law of universal love and brotherhood, and defended frugality, meritocracy, non-discrimination, and the prohibition of offensive warfare. It is also considered the precursor of utilitarianism (23 centuries before Bentham).

He argued that rulers and intellectuals had an obligation to promote the common good and benefit and minimize harm, and that therefore any benefits and potential harm should be carefully weighed against any decision.

Against Confucius, he rejected the value of traditions and rites and fatalism, and promoted universal brotherhood and a strong principle of non-discrimination. Although he valued respect for authority and order, he defended removing from power those who did not serve the people.

He believed that the source of all ills was "discrimination," that is, differential treatment of people (better treating our friends, or those of our family, or those of our tribe). And that we couldn't make distinctions between "them" and "us"

"A sage who is dedicated to bringing order to the world must know what the disorder is due to, and then he can bring order to the world. If he does not know what the disorder is due to, he cannot bring order"

"Where does the disorder come from? It arises from the lack of mutual love".

"The sages who dedicate their work to bringing order to the world, should prohibit hatred and foster love. If there is universal mutual love in the world, then there is order, while if there is mutual hatred, then disorder appears."

"One must always foster love for others"

Twenty-six centuries ago, Mozi was obviously accused of being "goodist" and of believing in a utopian world on the part of the supposed "realists", those who defended the principle of discrimination against that of universal brotherhood. And he answered them with a simple and implacable argument.

Suppose there are two kinds of people in the world: those who believe in universal brotherhood and love, and those who believe in the principle of discrimination, and defend the power to privilege themselves or their families.

Suppose a member of this second group is in difficulty and needs to entrust the care of his family to a third. Who would you trust with such care? To whom preach universal love or to someone who is not from your family but who, like him, preaches discrimination?

Mozi presupposes that he would choose the one who preaches universal love, and concludes that those who uphold the principle of discrimination thus contradict their words with their own deeds, while supporters of universal brotherhood remain consistent.

His egalitarianism and radical doctrine of universal love spanned China for 2 centuries, but it was fought, and then ignored and forgotten for the next 23 centuries, until Mao rehabilitated him as a precursor to radical egalitarianism and communism.

Then it was republished and translated into English, French and German. As soon as Bertolt Brecht read one of his texts, he immediately converted to Moism and wrote the Me-ti or Book of Changes. Today it is almost impossible to find Mozi's work in Spanish or Catalan. End.

Posted by: H.Schmatz | Jul 11 2020 12:14 utc | 159

@146 - The high rates of STDs, HIV and murder for negroes are based on today’s statistics.

Posted by: Kevin | Jul 11 2020 13:24 utc | 160

Thanks for the posting H.Schmatz | Jul 11 2020 12:14 utc | 158
I was pleased to be reminded about Mozi, a remarkable man.

Posted by: tucenz | Jul 11 2020 13:25 utc | 161


The migration Out of Africa was pre homo sapiens and thus there was not black or white or any color at that time. So, it is a myth that all modern humans are black because pre-modern human migrated Out of Africa. We, all of us modern homo sapiens humans, are all white and we're all yellow and we're all red and we're all brown or whatever color we can list because we're all modern human which is very distinct to the pre-modern humans that migrated from Africa.

I've recently come to learn that the Australian indigenous are not the Aborigine as was historically believed. Archaic humans preceded the Aborigine by nearly 100,000 years on the Australian continent and they had seafaring capability obviously and complex language skills. The Aborigine, in fact, were to the archaic humans as the Europeans were to the indigenous inhabitants of North, Central and South America.

Posted by: | Jul 11 2020 13:52 utc | 162

Mike Whitney suggest that Sweden was rigth after all.

"It’s worth repeating that the reason everyone was so scared about Covid originally was because it was hyped as a “novel virus”, completely new with no known cure or natural protection. That was a lie that was propagated by Fauci and his dissembling Vaccine Mafia, all of who are responsible for the vast destruction to the US economy, the unprecedented spike in unemployment, and the obliteration of tens of thousands of small businesses."

Posted by: Blue Dotterel | Jul 11 2020 13:53 utc | 163

An earlier article by Whitney deals with the class war aspect.

"The lockdowns are an Americanized version of the “Shock Doctrine”, that is, the country has been thrust into a severe crisis that will result in the implementing of neoliberal economic policies such as privatization, deregulation and cuts to social services. Already many of the liberal governors have driven their states into bankruptcy ensuring that budgets will have to be slashed, more jobs will be lost, funding for education and vital infrastructure will shrink, and assistance to the poor and needy will be sharply reduced. Shutting down the US economy, will create a catastrophe unlike anything we have ever seen in the United States.

It’s not surprising that the Black Lives Matter protests took place at the same time as the lockdowns. The looting, rioting and desecration of statues provided the perfect one-two punch for those who see some tactical advantage in intensifying public anxiety by exacerbating racial tensions and splitting the country into two warring camps. Divide and conquer remains the modus operandi of imperialists everywhere. That same rule applies here."

Posted by: Blue Dotterel | Jul 11 2020 14:14 utc | 164

Richard Steven Hack @Jul11 #151

Well, that makes them morons, doesn't it? LOL

I can't dispute that logic. LOL!


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 11 2020 14:15 utc | 165

BM, Mina

Have you seen these comments (which comport with my own understanding):

  • aairfccha @Jul10 12:07 #80

    As soon as we enter Hydroxychloroquine into the picture, G6PD deficiency pops up. This is a genetic condition particularly common in certain parts of Africa, Asia, the Mediterranean, and the Middle East and it has the nasty effect of making HCQ, other antimalarials and a whole host of other drugs quite a bit more dangerous.

  • Really?? @Jul11 1:54 @144

    There are big differences in vitamin D uptake.
    And comordibity.
    Which doesn't negate the importance of social issues, especially in comorbity (hypertension, diabetes 2, obesity, poor nutrition).
    Still, effective prevention must deal with reality.


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 11 2020 14:33 utc | 166

The good old-fashioned flu will NOT be upstaged by this newbie virus!

Fast-Spreading Mutation Helps Common Flu Subtype Evade Immune Response and Vaccines

Posted by: blues | Jul 11 2020 14:40 utc | 167

Cuba emerges victorious:

Cuba salva: 14 días sin casos críticos, 13 sin fallecidos


@ Posted by: Procopius | Jul 11 2020 10:41 utc | 154

If you want to be rigorous, then the apex year of the USA was 1969: this was the last year every relevant macroeconomic data in the USA was getting better. After that, the USA begun to get visibly worse and unequal, but still getting bigger overall (i.e. "lifting all boats")

But 1978 is the year when real wages stopped growing in real terms. After 1978, the USA wasn't able to make everybody happy (i.e. capitalists and workers) anymore.

Posted by: vk | Jul 11 2020 15:02 utc | 168

"Every pathology that can be avoided by personal responsibility is worse with blacks. Highest rates of STDs, HIV, illegitimate births, murder. They won’t wear a condom and you expect them to wear a mask?"

Posted by: Kevin | Jul 10 2020 20:18 utc | 114

I want to be careful how I say this. What. A. F*cking. Dick. You need a condom pulled over your head so human beings are semi-protected from the shit that falls out of your mouth.

Posted by: TominAZ | Jul 11 2020 15:20 utc | 169


Where Cuba was and is victorious, is as follows. The model of the near to mid-term future for humans, if they want to try and manage the imminent contraction in an equitable, egalitarian and humane way as possible, is Cuba. Of note, Cuba arrived at this destination, as the paradigm of how to manage the contraction, purely by accident. It was serendipitous. America played a large part in forcing Cuba into this paradigm-creating circumstance. Of course, it wasn't America's intent and in fact quite the contrary was America's intent, but here we are. China, considering this, is an abomination and it's an insult to the Accidental Revolution to mention Cuba and China in the same breath for one is the inverse of the other. One has it right, the other has it grotesquely wrong. China is the poison dart to the heart of the living planet. It's a giant Pac Man let loose to devour what's left of an already severely denuded and despoiled paradise.

Cuba; The Accidental Revolution

Nice things are clean air, fresh water and an abundance of foliage and wild life. What is mistaken for nice things, things made by man, are the things that destroy the true nice things.

Posted by: | Jul 11 2020 15:22 utc | 170

don't worry... kevin will be back with a different name here at moa... it happens all the time... some troll is run out of town and adopts a new name... the trick is to not engage with these freaks... they just take away from moa...

Posted by: james | Jul 11 2020 15:45 utc | 171

Here's an excellent interview with Howie Hawkins, the Green party candidate for president, in which he discusses the real diseases of US society in particular. Thanks to C-Span for this.

Posted by: juliania | Jul 11 2020 16:12 utc | 172

Every pathology that can be avoided by personal responsibility is worse with blacks. Highest rates of STDs, HIV, illegitimate births, murder. They won’t wear a condom and you expect them to wear a mask?

Posted by: Kevin | Jul 10 2020 20:18 utc | 114

Well, Kevin, this is an unusually pure example of what they call racism. I suspect that b will get around to removing your comments.

The reality is that some people get fixated on some common notion (like racism) I understand that completely. Firstly, white people who have very low incomes are quite similar to the blacks whom you are obviously envisioning. You probably don't seriously (viscerally) understand what being treated like a black person can do to the personality. Also, the ones you are thinking about are virtually always from a very poor background. And I don't think you understand what that typically does to the personality.

In my long and very peculiar life, I have learned that, beyond the effects of unfortunate experiences, black people are nothing more nor less than white people with dark skin. But I don't have any expectation that you will come to see this.

Posted by: blues | Jul 11 2020 16:13 utc | 173

The *morons* here who deny these truths need to *STFU* and *GTFO*.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Jul 10 2020 23:08 utc | 129

It seems like the crowd here is becoming weary of your relentless crusade against the *morons* who don't believe in the virus. Riddle me this: Assuming they really are *morons*, why on earth would you expect them to learn anything from you, or from anybody? But then... I feel that you are referring to them as *morons* because you are extremely angry at them. I really have the feeling that you are angry at a lot of things, and this is scaring your audience. You almost certainly have many things to be angry about. At some point, one must rein in one's emotions. If one is absolutely terrified of mice, one ought not let that cause one to jump off of a high cliff.

And for heaven's sake please at least find something more interesting to be angry about all the time. I would actually prefer to get it across that emotions are to be experienced properly, which generally means briefly. But I would at the least stop dropping the 'm' word. It's getting a lot of folks pissed off.

Posted by: blues | Jul 11 2020 16:42 utc | 174

blues @ 173

...I have learned that, beyond the effects of unfortunate experiences, black people are nothing more nor less than white people with dark skin...

well, except that negro expression seems particularly blessed with rhythms that resonate with something primordially, and cosmically, consequential...

...though, to someone with your handle, the point is probably moot.

Posted by: john | Jul 11 2020 17:04 utc | 175

Don't worry about the working class struggles. Skilled imported labor will now be doing the same thing to wages of Americans in the STEM fields. Until the white collar professionals get outsourced, nothing will happen. The wage problem in the US goes back to non stop immigration. We've seen nothing yet now that are the war party, so there will be even more non stop war and refugees to go along with all that immigration. Yes I know, liberal tummies being virtuously filled diverse food.

Covid19 was just a nice way to kill off some grannies and grandpas. Imagine all pension funds and Social Security savings. Not to mention all dead people vote Democrat. For the record I hate the useless GOP even more.

Posted by: Old and Grumpy | Jul 11 2020 18:46 utc | 176

Old and Grumpy @176

I think perhaps many people overestimate how attractive the US is for workers with globally marketable skill sets. The Covid now being indelibly endemic in the United States is something that goes on the balance sheet along with systemic racism and ingrained societal violence when smart people are weighing where in the world they want to raise a family.

Notice how we don't hear so much jingoist propaganda in the corporate mass media anymore about pollution in China? They've made impressive progress cleaning up, but that part we don't hear about in the West because it doesn't work well with the "demonize China" campaign.

Notice how China's "ghost cities" also don't make the news too much anymore in the West now that many are no longer just gigantic construction sites.

While China is not yet THE hot place to be in the world for people who can pick and choose, it has quietly been moving up the rankings. Market capitalization of corporations gets all the news, but China has been positioning to surpass the US in a number of other metrics as well.

Of course, that isn't necessarily good news for American STEM workers. Who really wants to get their job security from the fact that nobody else wants that job?

Posted by: William R Henry | Jul 11 2020 20:57 utc | 177

Blue Dotterel 163
Thanks for the link to Sweden situation. BUT - a big BUT - what is the role of the population´s size on spread of pandemic? I have not seen any study which ask this question.

Posted by: bystander 04 | Jul 11 2020 21:41 utc | 178

163 Blue Dotterel

The summary of that article I read at ZH hinged on herd immunity becoming effective after an ~15% - 20% infection rate, and an inability to get the virus a second time. The first assumption is very premature and sounds like Germany declaring victory in August, 1940. To date, Sweden has many more infections and deaths than Norway or Denmark.

Posted by: Schmoe | Jul 11 2020 21:58 utc | 179

@ Posted by: William R Henry | Jul 11 2020 20:57 utc | 177

China still doesn't have any legal path for naturalization for non-Chinese (i.e. the Chinese equivalent of a Green Card doesn't exist).

Trust me, I've already researched that (for personal reasons).

You can still go there under a working visa, marry a Chinese and live there indefinitely, but you'll never be able to retire under their pension system and you won't have access to their healthcare system (you would have to pay it in the private sector). Even then you'll still be able to live there without debt or financial insecurity - as long as you have a job and keep working.

The state of the art is as follows: if you're able to live as middle class or above in a tier 1 city (Shanghai, Beijing etc.), you'll practically have a First World experience. People who have visited there recently already state that Shanghai is a full-fledged First World city, on par with New York, Milan, London, Tokyo or whatever you name it. The picture changes completely once you get out of a Tier 1 city.

In a Tier 3 city, you'll live in a Third World experience - but without the violence, the drugs etc. etc. Life seems to be very frugal, you won't have the boulevards of Europe, Japan and the USA, but you'll still live much better than in other "emerging economies" (Brazil, Turkey, Russia etc. etc.).

The greatest problem with life quality in China vis-a-vis the other First World countries (even crumbling ones, like Japan and Italy) is definitely the social safety net - which is still not as universal or as good. The life quality you have in Japan in terms of raising a family and getting old is still some levels above anything you have in China (for a non-millionaire/billionaire) - the security of knowing you'll have a good, free and public school for your children and of having a free (or at least very cheap, in Japan's case) and good healthcare anywhere you are that are a mark of a First World country is still not to be found in China unless you're middle class in a Tier 1 city.

But what impress about China, from a historical point of view, is the scale of its achievements (which have not yet peaked): 1.4 billion inhabitants, which don't have any parallel in human history (even the Second Industrial Revolution in England is dwarfed).

If the CCP is successful with what it wants to achieve until 2049, it will be a monument of human achievement. It would be a true world revolution, about which historians will certainly treat - correctly - as one of the benchmarks of human History.

Or, of course, it could fail. Interesting times and all that.

Posted by: vk | Jul 11 2020 22:06 utc | 180

@ 180 vk... thanks for your overview on china...

Posted by: james | Jul 12 2020 0:02 utc | 182

Posted by: Blue Dotterel | Jul 11 2020 13:53 utc | 163

Re.: Sweden's "great success" - let's compare to their neighbours, as of right now:

Sweden 74,898 cases 5,526 deaths 7,415 cases per million 547 deaths per million
Denmark 12,946 cases 609 deaths 2,235 cases per million 105 deaths per million
Norway 8,977 cases 252 deaths 1,656 cases per million 46 deaths per million
Finland 7,291 cases 329 deaths 1,316 cases per million 59 deaths per million

Posted by: farm ecologist | Jul 12 2020 2:00 utc | 183

vk @180

Of course, I was talking about the curve. China could hit some sort of development ceiling and collapse, but I don't see the mechanism of that ceiling. Also, comparing China to Japan is unfair. There is no country on the planet that compares favorably to Japan where personal/family well being and security are concerned. In some respects Japan as a nation is one big family. I think it might not be possible to reproduce that on a national scale anywhere else.

It is still too early to be looking for the Chinese to develop a path to naturalization. They have only recently starting to realize that they do not really have a population problem that cannot be addressed by technology. Creating attractive high density population centers is depopulating their countrysides, and they are only now starting to seriously think about hyper density urban developments.

But we don't have to wait for the Chinese to begin building those hyper density urban structures before they realize that they have room for immigration. Right this very moment Chinese families are grappling with the wisdom of sending their kids to the US for elite educations. They are wondering why they don't have elite universities like Harvard or Cambridge right in China to send their kids to. They will quickly realize that what makes a university elite is its ability to attract the top minds in the world, and those top minds might not be Chinese.

To attract those top minds the Chinese will soon realize that they must hold out the carrot of citizenship. Even before they realize that, though, they need to reach the epiphany that Chinese citizenship might be something that could be viewed as a carrot by elite minds.

Keep in mind that it was only a few years ago that typical Chinese individuals littered profusely. They viewed the whole country as being a garbage dump anyway, so what difference would a little more litter make? It has only been a few years since the Chinese in general started viewing their country as a place that can be beautiful. It is another step for them to make before they realize that internationally respected people might want to become citizens.

Change is occurring extremely rapidly in China. Change so rapid that consciousness is not keep up with that change. China will begin developing paths to citizenship for academics, scientists, and engineers over the coming years as their consciousness begins to catch up. We will probably see this first in Chinese universities. This process will be accelerated or retarded depending upon how quickly the current economic crisis is expressed in the US.

Posted by: William R Henry | Jul 12 2020 2:44 utc | 184

@184 William R Henry

These are some excellent observations and forecasts - many thanks!

Posted by: Grieved | Jul 12 2020 3:26 utc | 185

Can comment #181 be deleted? Commentator has nothing to say and has buggered the page.

Re comment 153: Please find me sitting on NemesisCalling's bench, they and oldhippie (from an older hippie IIRC) makes for good company. Should be a breeze bypassing obsequious and obnoxious commentariat. Nuf said.

Posted by: Formerly T-Bear | Jul 12 2020 10:39 utc | 186

Re.: Sweden's "great success" - let's compare to their neighbours, as of right now:

Sweden 74,898 cases 5,526 deaths 7,415 cases per million 547 deaths per million
Denmark 12,946 cases 609 deaths 2,235 cases per million 105 deaths per million
Norway 8,977 cases 252 deaths 1,656 cases per million 46 deaths per million
Finland 7,291 cases 329 deaths 1,316 cases per million 59 deaths per million
Posted by: farm ecologist | Jul 12 2020 2:00 utc | 183
Experiment: Re.: Ukraine's great failure, compare to neighbors and Scandinavians, deaths per million, today
Ukraine 32
Russia 78
Belorus 49
Moldova 156
Romania 98
Poland 42
Hungary 62

One can offer interpretations, but we must admit that epidemics have some mysterious logic too. Like

Argentina 40
Chile 360 <-- much more "economically rational"

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Jul 12 2020 12:50 utc | 187

Below is from Xinhuanet
WASHINGTON, July 12 (Xinhua) -- Around 40 percent of positive COVID-19 cases showed no symptoms of the coronavirus disease, according to the latest "COVID-19 Pandemic Planning Scenarios" from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

This document, which the agency said can be used to estimate the possible effects of COVID-19 in U.S. states and localities, was first posted on May 20. The July 10 update is based on data received by the U.S. CDC through June 29.

The new percentage of infections that are asymptomatic, under the CDC's "current best estimate," is up from the 35 percent the agency estimated on May 20.

Also, under the agency's current best estimate, an asymptomatic individual is 75 percent as infectious as a symptomatic individual.

"Asymptomatic cases are challenging to identify because individuals do not know they are infected unless they are tested, which is typically only done systematically as a part of a scientific study," the CDC said.

AND today, for the first time in public, Trump wore a is said that the only thing we really have to share with others is the example of how we live our lives.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Jul 13 2020 3:20 utc | 188

'It is likely that Trump started his campaign to urgently end the lockdown after he noticed that the outbreak in New York mostly hit the black underclass. '

sorry but thats ridiculous and defamatory

Posted by: brian | Jul 13 2020 3:58 utc | 189

' b deleted ALL my posts for reasons not explained. I see that he has let yours stand (to date) It grieves me greatly to think of all the people who might have been helped....

And it infuriates me to read of the bogus deceitful "STUDIES" which gave doses 4 and 5 times the recommended dose to very very ill people. Interestingly - Bolsonaro of Brazil, who was recently diagnosed with covid-19 (after denying it's importance for months ha ha) is receiving hydroxychloroquine. hahahaha I wonder how many other politicos and their handlers have a stash? cheers

Posted by: Miss Lacy | Jul 10 2020 15:29 utc | 91

mine too on hydroxychloroquine were disappeared.

Vitamin D is involved in cases of darker skinned people dying more often. Its involved for everyone esp care home immates, but black people are esp susceptible

'Dermatologist Paul B. Dean, MD, MPH, has been telling his patients for years to take a vitamin D3 supplement to help boost their immune system. He is strongly advising this supplement now to help strengthen our immune system during the COVID-19 pandemic for everyone, but especially older adults and those with darker skin tones.

Paul B. Dean MD strongly believes the important link between vitamin D deficiency and skin pigmentation. Though darker skin tones have more melanin, a natural protector from sun damage, the darker pigmentation reduces the skin’s ability to effectively absorb sunlight and produce vitamin D. As for older individuals, as we age our body loses some of its ability to synthesize vitamin D from sunlight. '

Posted by: brian | Jul 13 2020 4:10 utc | 190

'Bolsonaro states he's taking hydroxycloroquine. Doesn't mean he really is taking it.

His friend is the owner of the main hydroxycloroquine producer in Brazil. It's consensus in Brazil he's lobbying.

Posted by: vk | Jul 10 2020 15:56 utc | 93

if Bolsonaro says he is taking it then he is taking it. Your hatred is driving your cynicism

Posted by: brian | Jul 13 2020 4:14 utc | 191

'If b did indeed delete your comment simply for having written in favour of hydroxychloriquine, he was quite wrong to do so (but it's his blog). I seem to remember him saying he was going to, but it's a error to do so. HCQ as useful as any drug around against COVID, with an actual effect, as opposed to remdesivir, which is 100% fake but heavily supported in the States by Fauci among others, and thus approved elsewhere.

Idiots like Bolsonaro and Trump take it because they're afraid of dying, and it's the only drug which has any effect. It's a mistake to judge a drug by the idiots who take it, but that's what's happened.

Posted by: Laguerre | Jul 10 2020 16:45 utc | 95

thats a bizarre comment. Hated only skews your understanding.
'Idiots like Bolsonaro and Trump take it because they're afraid of dying,'

youre nor afraid of dying?

this is even worse:'It's a mistake to judge a drug by the idiots who take it'

Thats idiotic
'HCQ as useful as any drug around against COVID, with an actual effect,'
its the only orthodox drug with a proven record against Corona viruses

yes B has been removing comments mentioning Hydroxycchloroquine,,,,calling it 'useless and possibly dangerous'

Remdesivir is useless and dangerous

Posted by: brian | Jul 13 2020 4:21 utc | 192

Bolsonaro and hydroxycloroquine. The latter may help in a proper dose and proper combination (not alone). Reminds me that I forgot to take my zinc. The former seems positively toxic. If you correct for the age distribution in the population, Brazil seems to have the worst record, although about the same as Peru. In China, west Europe and USA the death were disproportionally among the folks above 70, and most of all, in the special facilities for disabled old people (few of those in China, plenty in USA, Canada and west Europe). The much smaller population of disabled old people and absence of special facilities may explain smaller mortality in east-central Europe, but Latin America does not have top-heavy age distribution.

Bolsonaro may be innocent. Or not. Population statistic in the less organized countries of South American were reported as sketchy, lazy officials guess the probable number and put them into "official records". Are the "probable numbers" higher or lower than the real one? In COVID-19 times, fewer reporters dare (or are able) to check than in war zones like Somalia and Yemen. There was one report on Bolivia and one on Ecuador, the latter based on the reading of the local press, something that can be done from outside.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Jul 13 2020 6:47 utc | 193

Re deletions,
Due to slowly failing eyesight, my reading speed is also slowing and many of the deletions have happened before the deleted commentary had been encountered so no knowledge was gained from the nature of the comment. However, it is highly likely the comment presented itself as prescribing a given substance to alleviate a medical problem, creating fear driven demand, this prescription proffered from non-medical speculation. I certainly would not be willing to take that responsibility for producing a public forum such as MoA and would also reduce my risk of receiving legal recourse should the prescription fail. Not everything concerning the deletions revolves about the commentariat, there are other considerations to be considered other than some commentariat's ego, but that understanding is part of becoming adults as well.

Re 'A HREF=' fear of links, some advise:
Looking at a link, the beginning section is continuous alpha-numeric (letters, symbols and numbers) that usually is about half the normal page width and is ended with a / before following link information. Notice carefully how that information is presented. If-it-is-separated-by-hyphens-(the-little-dashes-half-the-height-of-the-script-as-you-see-being-used-here)-you-will-never-have-a-problem-using-the-link-directly-in-your-message-because-the-line-will-be-broken-automatically-without-changing-the link.
if you see your
link_has_underlines_used_like_you_see_here_these_act_like_phantom_letters_symbols_or_numbers_and_your_link_will_bugger_the_page boundaries until either a hyphen (-) or a ? punctuation appears.
Further advise is always start a copied and pasted link from the left margin of the page to avoid any chance a starting continuous alpha-numeric sequence might happen.

A suggestion: Copy and paste the A HREF allowed tag above the comment box into your commentary. Carefully delete the '' between the quotation marks("") leaving them and insert your link there and finish the tag by deleting the part seen between the middle > and the final < /A* 'Headline (not the URL)' and put your headline to the link in its place. You will have completed a successful HTML link tag and are now an experienced expert. Congratulations!

Posted by: Formerly T-Bear | Jul 13 2020 17:18 utc | 194


Ukraine tests per million - 18,380
Russia tests per million - 158,973

Best way to keep covid19 numbers down is not to test. Trump seemed to like that option for keeping the disease under control.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Jul 13 2020 17:57 utc | 195

"People of color" don't get enough sunshine. I would have thought that is obvious. Those who live on the streets never fall ill for this sort of flu.

It is all about vitamin D. That is why they want people to wear masks and to hide at home. That is why they try to stop people from going into nature or the beach. Our rulers are criminals. What is so difficult to understand?

Posted by: Alfred (Cairns) | Jul 15 2020 11:41 utc | 196

@farm ecologist #179
Time and studies will shed more light, but it is known that Denmark and Norway are significantly less dense than Sweden. Both of those countries' overall population densities are 8-ish people per square km vs. Sweden's 20+.
Moreover, the density in Sweden's urban areas is 200+.
Finland has a more comparable population density of 18, but it is far more evenly distributed than Sweden.
The same dynamic is occurring both between states in the US and within states: areas with higher population densities have more nCOV, proportionately, than those that are low population density.
The point I will repeat is: we're now 4-5 months into the minimum 12-18 months needed to develop, test, manufacture and distribute an effective nCOV vaccine. Economies are already devastated; initial population helicopter money is earmarked and spent.
Will governments continue to do so for another 8-13 months? (or more; the fastest vaccine approval in reality history was 5 years with manufacturing and distribution adding another 3-4 years on top of that).
And what is the plan to "reopen" the economy after 12-18 months of no restaurants, no travel, no bar/clubs/gyms, no non-food retail?
It is sad but equally clear that there is still no coherent plan or even thought going into how "post-nCOV" will be defined, much less occur. Or that it will even matter after such a long break.

Posted by: c1ue | Jul 16 2020 10:56 utc | 197

Posted by: c1ue | Jul 16 2020 10:56 utc | 197

Thanks for your thoughtful reply. I acknowledge that population density and other demographic factors could play into the differences in infection and mortality rates among Scandinavian countries, however even if such factors fully accounted for those differences one would still be hard-pressed to say that Sweden's laissez-faire strategy is a smart one.

Posted by: farm ecologist | Jul 16 2020 23:35 utc | 198

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