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COVID-19: the unwarranted panic

Four more stories today indicate once again that the worldwide panic over the corona/COVID-19/Wuhan virus is strongly unwarranted:

The first report, from the science journal Science, provides an update on the situation in South Korea, where testing for the virus has been the most thorough of any nation in the world and where, because of that extensive testing, has shown the death rate has turned out to be far lower than the preliminary statistics have suggested. Out of a population of 50 million, slightly more than 8,000 have been infected, with only 81 dying. This is a death rate of 0.9%, higher than the flu’s 0.1% but not horribly so. And like the flu, most of those deaths have been among the elderly.

The numbers there are now dropping, indicating that the disease might have run its course without causing a catastrophic disaster. There is still a chance it could break out again, but the data suggests otherwise.

Moreover, South Korea controlled the situation without any strong-arm authoritarian tactics, as seen in China and as becoming popular here in the formerly free U.S.

“South Korea is a democratic republic, we feel a lockdown is not a reasonable choice,” says Kim Woo-Joo, an infectious disease specialist at Korea University.

It sadly appears that South Koreans might value freedom more than too many of today’s Americans.

The second article describes research from Wuhan in Hubei province in China, reconfirming the South Korean data. There it appears the death rate was 1.4%, only slightly higher than in South Korea. And once again, the death rate is mostly confined to the older population with already existing health issues, like the flu:

The chance of someone with symptomatic Covid-19 dying varied by age, confirming other studies. For those aged 15 to 44, the fatality rate was 0.5%, though it might have been as low as 0.1% or as high as 1.3%. For people 45 to 64, the fatality rate was also 0.5%, with a possible low of 0.2% and a possible high of 1.1%. For those over 64, it was 2.7%, with a low and high estimate of 1.5% and 4.7%.

The chance of serious illness from coronavirus infection in younger people was so low, the scientists estimate a fatality rate of zero.

The third report also confirms what the first two studies suggest, that a large percentage of those who get the virus show no symptoms at all, indicating that the death rate is even lower.

The final link is to me the most significant, as it describes in detail the situation that unfolded on the cruise ship Diamond Princess when coronavirus was discovered there and the entire ship was placed under strict quarantine. In a sense the ship was a perfect controlled experiment for determining the infection and death rate of this virus.

One would have thought, if this virus is so virulent and deadly as the press and politicians and too many panicky Americans are claiming, that everyone on the ship would have gotten badly sick, and many many would have died. Instead, 83% of the passengers and crew never got the disease at all, despite being closely confined with infected people for weeks. This despite the fact that the ship’s population was heavily skewed towards older people. In fact, older people were just as likely to not get infected as younger people.

The total number of deaths was 7, all over seventy years of age, producing a death rate of 1.2%, once again in the same range as South Korea and China.

I repeat: Any disease like this requires a rational aggressive and focused response. We can’t ignore it. People need to voluntarily self-quarantine if they feel sick, or if they have older and sick relatives living with them. We should also wash our hands regularly, and avoid unnecessary physical contact with many other individuals.

At the same time, we mustn’t waste our energies doing things that are unnecessary, foolish, or downright counter-productive, such as releasing entire prison populations into the general population.

We also should be outraged by politicians who are using this situation not to deal with it but to impose their pet totalitarian rule over the population, such as passing entirely irrelevant gun bans and shutting down businesses willy-nilly and imprisoning everyone in their homes.

These actions will do little to ease the epidemic. Instead, they might worsen the situation by causing panic (as they have apparently done). Panic is not what this situation warrants. Instead it needs a calm rational response, something that only civilized rational people can give it.

Are we that? Watching what is happening I must sadly say I have my doubts.

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  • Brian

    Bob it seems that we need some kind of new National Liberties organization other than the ACLU, to stand up against a lot of the government over reach that is increasingly happening and not just during this epidemic.

  • Brian: What we need more than anything is for American public to get into the voting booth in November and fire every one of the politicians who have been abusing their power for the past decade, from both parties.

    The more incumbents out, the better. The more from the Democratic Party, which has been the worst abuser (though not alone in its abuse), would be even better.

  • Andi

    Slight correction: Wuhan is a city, in Hubei province.

  • bluedirector

    Bob, appreciate the sentiment. Couple of countervailing opinions:

    1. Italy doesn’t shut down their country (gradually, over time) because of hysteria. Hospitals are simply overwhelmed, I hear.
    2. 0.9 mortality vs 0.1 is nearly an order of magnitude. That’s huge.
    3. The American government, with the best data and scientists in the world, are recommending social distancing for a minimum of 15 days, which is disruptive to say the least


  • Cotour

    Dr. Ron Paul on the Covid 19 virus:

    Paul seems to agree that its being hyped a bit too much. Between the desperate politicos who fear making a politically costly mistake of some degree, and the media that just pumps and pumps for all they are worth. Not a good combination.

    And, we also have a situation where the only things that could make the inevitable Trump 2020 election victory questionable appear to have been delivered in a timely manner.

    Covid 19, a function of a sloppy market keeping habit? Or a convenient agenda and strategy delivered to effect a world wide economic depression and a last ditch effort of the Globalists to install a pliable and vacant American president in order that they get a second bite at the apple? That Hillary delivering the goods just did not work out, too bad.

    Two reasonable questions. But which one is the truth as it related to the public? Sometimes coincidences are just too coincidental for me. (And I wrote a book about coincidence)

    I suspect that this effort too, if it is indeed an executed strategy as opposed to a natural event, will also ultimately fail IMO. Trump is just that kind of guy if history is any judge. But then who really knows?

  • John

    I’m a self proclaimed germ-o-phobe. I’ve carried hand sanitizer long before it became cool. I’ve always kept my distance from people in general, and I can’t stand being near the sick. I’ve been known to “that guy” who puts on an anti-viral mask when flying, and I’m a chronic hand-washer. Even I think the response has been way way overblown.

    The governor closed the gym. Really? The sick don’t go to the gym.

    A COVID-19 mortality rate of over 1% from the second link is actually very bad. The last 8 flu seasons killed approximately between 12k to 61k. If the flu mortality rate averages around 0.1%, then we could conceivably be looking at hundreds of thousands to half a million or more dead with this. That combined with how rapid it may occur gives plenty of reason for legitimate concern.

    I just hope everyone has enough toilet paper to get through this.

  • Cotour

    “Coronavirus war of words erupts as superpowers blame each other for COVID-19 ‘bioweapon”

    And what are all of the big powers doing? Pointing their fingers at each other for some S.O.M. type strategy by one of them.

    The Chinese say that the U.S. developed and set the virus in Wuhan, which is a possibility IMO, the arms length deep state players that remain in our government and who oppose Trump would be able to accomplish such a strategy. And it would be effective, just look around, take a look at your IRA. Make you nervous? Scared enough to want a change in the leadership and direction the country is going?

    Timing is everything in life, and Covid 19 delivers on soooo many levels.

  • Craken

    Your sources avoid what is probably the most serious threat Covid-19 poses: that the medical system may be overwhelmed. Intelligent people (NN Taleb, Greg Cochran) with actual epidemiological/quantitative background have been warning about this for 6 weeks+. It has happened at a small scale in Northern Italy. Their death rate (as reported) is running over 7%. No doubt it is lower than that in reality, since their statistical sample is less complete than South Korea’s. But, the real rate is much above the 1% S Korea is seeing. Slowing down the spread prevents medical over-capacity deaths, gives time to develop better treatments, and, hopefully, gives time to produce a vaccine.

  • “Apollo 13″

    Ken Mattingly (Gary Sinese):”I don’t have the measles! I’m not gonna get the measles!”

  • sippin_bourbon

    What I find interesting is that depending on where you look around the world, the impact is not the same.
    South Korea appears a successful lock down.
    Italy not so much.
    China, specifically Wuhan, about what you would expect for Ground Zero.
    The US and the rest of the EU, the jury is still out.

    I think the social distancing is not a bad idea. I have old parents and old neighbor, and have contact with people that are immune-compromised. So my decision to self-isolate after being around 200 strangers seems prudent. That means food stocking, consumable stocking, and such, to be away from the public for a while.

    The problem is not the death rate. It never has been. The problem is the transmission rate.
    The world will survive, but choosing not to be a vector to infect others is not an over reaction. Its responsible behavior.

  • Brendan

    I have to ask the question. Why would the Chinese shut down their economy for what looked like (at the time a few tens or few hundreds) dead.

    Sorry to sound like a conspiracy nut, but I think the truth is they had a lot more dead than they admitted. The rest of the world has exceeded both the Chinese infection rate and their death rates. That the Chinese weren’t effectively trying to shut it down to begin with seems to indicate that they gave false numbers throughout the crisis.

    I think that intelligence to that fact is the reason Trump has acted as he has. Because otherwise this whole thing lacks logic.

  • pzatchok

    Simulating a reporter.

    0.9 mortality vs 0.1 is nearly 500 times more lethal.
    By God if SARS killed 16,000 this will kill millions.
    They are at least preparing properly in Iran by digging mass graves early.
    Trump just wants everyone to look the other way by giving away cash. Like a thousand dollars will bury grandma. He is heartless.

    Sarcasm off.

  • Brendan wrote, “The rest of the world has exceeded both the Chinese infection rate and their death rates.”

    Actually no, this is incorrect. In fact, two of the links in my essay prove it, in South Korea and on the Princess Diamond. In both those places, outside China, the infection rate and death rate was lower than in China.

    China imposed harsh restrictions I think for two reasons. First, there were a lot of unknowns then, and they needed to act aggressively when it looked like the disease might become a disaster. It has not however.

    Second, they are a totalitarian government, prone to harsh measures. They like to use power over their lowly subjects. This was another opportunity.

  • wayne

    This is extremely enlightening–

    “Coronavirus Perspective”
    Richard Epstein- Hoover

    “Perhaps my analysis is all wrong, even deeply flawed. But the stakes are too high to continue on the current course without reexamining the data and the erroneous models that are predicting doom.”

  • wayne: He confirms everything I wrote, across the board.

  • Craig Strange

    How much medical care was available on the diamond princess? If that was below average that would also affect the calculations

  • pzatchok

    China did not shutdown their economy. Not anymore than the US has at least.

    If you look at it with a real eye not all that many people or companies are actually totally closed. I bet far less than 5% in total.
    And everyone out of work will get compensated in some way.

    We are on a short term temporary slowdown.

    Plus China was already on a long holiday the Chinese New Year. All companies were either closed or running short staffed. Two more weeks was not that big of a slow down and only effected one province at a time.
    They are all back up and running now.

    Heck our company just told us to stop hoping for a layoff we have been declared a national necessity. We will stay open no matter what.
    We are even hiring for more permanent positions and expansions.

  • DougInWA

    Before you guys freak out about the 0.9% mortality rate…don’t forget. That’s the rate for those that ACTUALLY CAUGHT THE BUG, not the percentage of the total population. For S.Korea, that was 8000 infections out of 50mil or 0.016% of the pop got the virus, and of THOSE, 0.9% died. That’s why all the draconian measures that the various blue-state governors are taking are doing nothing other than causing economic pain, and social panic.

    When the story of the cruise ship came out, everybody thought, “Oh boy…zombie ship, everybody’s gonna die”. The truth turns out to be much less sensational.

    This madness HAS TO STOP.

  • Brendan

    Bob. By rate I mean growth rate as a function of time. Not the probability of death. I should have been more clear. Sorry!

    I have some more reasons for saying what I did but it’s too late to go into it in detail. But there’s a good paper here on the newest death percentages from Italy.

    And here’s some of the growth rates per country. Better than the John Hopkins. I’ll look at it tomorrow to see if they have raw data or a source to make it easier to examine.

  • Drol

    ”83% of the passengers and crew never got the disease at all, despite being closely confined with infected people for weeks.”

    That was with passengers being confined to their cabins, though (with only minor exceptions).

  • jack

    the Chinese did shut down most of their economy, the electricity use figures show that, it has not ramped up post New Year as it usually does, which is why we have had such beautiful clear skies here in Hong Kong.

    Personally i doubt that they would do that for the then disclosed number of deaths.

    HK has taken a hit as schools universities have been closed for weeks, lots of small business closures, its been tough, but the new cases now are nearly new arrivals, and compulsory 14 quarantine for all arrivals starts tonight.

    The numbers have been kept low enough to allow the health system to cope.

    Much easier in a city state of course, but it is high density living, public transport rich city.

  • wayne

    pzatchok– 20 new hires starting this week in grocery retailing, see below.

    Mr. Z.,
    –I noticed that! (and then I *re-read* your post again, to make sure you hadn’t referenced him!!)
    Pretty good for a law professor, eh?

    Anecdotal Tale from the Front-
    Regional grocery retailer (200 Stores) to which I’m affiliated– the 48 hour period from Friday 9pm to Sunday 9pm., they did slightly over $1 million in sales, which is roughly 4X’s what they consider normal for that store, at this time period. (fully 99% of that was food & grocery related items.)
    [concurrently, a large food-sale was in effect, so we had slightly more inventory in stock than non-sale weeks.]
    All “touchpoints” in the Store are being sanitized every 3 hours, and the customers went through 7,500+ Purell wipes in 2 days. (They even ‘retired’ the mechanical Pony ride in the lobby, she’s “resting in the Barn right now, and Will See You Soon.”)
    [the empty TP aisle, on the upside, actually gave them a chance to sanitize shelving]
    I witnessed 99.9% cooperation from customer’s; calm, cool, and collected. It was slow but steady process.
    There was a definite pattern in buying, but I don’t have access to that data. (The closing of k-12 schools announced Friday and starting Monday, caught everyone even more off kilter.)
    –The toilet-paper thing is confusing everyone at Corporate. A truckload of TP means a truckload of FOOD can’t be delivered. They are trying to balance that out.
    –my advice– buy what you normally would buy and pick up additional as available.

  • pzatchok

    I would not take Italys infection/death rate at face value either.

    They have a FAR higher rate of extended families than in America. They virtually forced all their old people to stay at home with young people who were far more socially active until that point.
    Now that the younger people are not as socially active the infection and death rates are falling into line with the rest of the EU.

    Personally I am curious about the nursing home my brother lives in.
    They have been on total lock down for 2+ weeks now after being on a security lock down for 3 months. Limited visitors and limited hours then.
    Its a Jewish home and received threats. Police caught the idiot but a new security station and doors were then installed. Its a good place, but he gets a little tired of the kosher meals all the time.
    So far as we know no residents are infected.

  • Lee S

    Some more boots on the ground views..
    My son’s school has moved over to year 9 pupils only in the morning, and year 8 after lunch, with missing lessons being done online…. It very much feels like they are ramping up for a shutdown.
    I have been told by my work that 48 hours after fever has gone and back to work.. so I’m back in tomorrow.
    But things have got REALLY serious in the UK… Filming has been cancelled on the most popular UK soap opera!!! This may cause riots!
    Also many supermarket chains are opening only for pensioners for the first hour of the day. This seems to me like the only good idea out of all the above.

  • GWB

    86% of people with coronavirus are walking around undetected, study says
    The controllers are using that as the reason for the shutdowns.

    with already existing health issues, like the flu
    Or pollution/smoking. *hack* *cough*

    older people were just as likely to not get infected as younger people
    Not really accurate representation of the data. They were significantly more likely than “younger people.” The group that was statistically as likely to get infected were the kids in the middle and high school years. Those from 20 to 60 or so were half as likely to get infected.

    Yes, this is a deliberate attempt by some to 1) drive the economy into the ground (because when the economy takes a downturn, Republican presidents lose their mandate) and 2) to impose authoritarian rule – even if just for a few moments.

  • GWB


    0.9 mortality vs 0.1 is nearly 500 times more lethal.
    Hah! And 500 million divided by 325 million is 1 million!

  • Lee S

    @GWB… Quote..
    “Yes, this is a deliberate attempt by some to 1) drive the economy into the ground (because when the economy takes a downturn, Republican presidents lose their mandate) and 2) to impose authoritarian rule – even if just for a few moments.”
    It makes zero sense that anyone would create a GLOBAL downturn, and kill potentially many many thousands worldwide, just to influence one government out of the 48 working democratic countries.
    Last time I checked, my supermarket was out of toilet paper, but there was plenty of tin foil.

  • GWB

    Lee S
    It makes zero sense that anyone would create a GLOBAL downturn, and kill potentially many many thousands worldwide

    That’s not what I said. In response to the post, which is about unwarranted panic, I said the panic-inducing measures and authoritarian responses were a deliberate attempt by some.

    I firmly believe the Chinese were messing around with various virii in their Wuhan lab, and poor procedures had someone carry this one out the door and down to the market. Everything proceeded according to nature at that point.

    The response to the virus in America among the media and some gov’t actors has been outrageous.

    (And I’m all stocked up on tinfoil, thank you. It’s patience I’m out of.)

  • Cotour

    Lee S:

    Boudica: Was a queen of the British Celtic Iceni tribe who led an uprising against the occupying forces of the Roman Empire in AD 60 or 61. She died shortly after its failure and was said to have poisoned herself. She is considered a British folk hero.

    After Boudica led her uprising against the Roman empire, and after the Romans returned with several legions of men to teach the Celts, (And everyone else and recover what was “Rightfully theirs”), a lesson they moved into what I believe is London today and killed as I understand it 80,000 people. Hacked them to pieces. And those who were not killed out right was made a slave.

    1. What is it that you, Lee S, does not understand about the real exercise of existential power?

    2. Why / how do you remain living in such an unconscious state?

    Your inability to understand why a Globalist force in the world would want to impose authoritarian rule makes everyone’s existence and freedom tentative at best. Economic destruction causes the need for transformational solutions and it is a perfect play regarding the subject at hand. What exactly do you think George Soros and his adherents, which IMO include the Chinese who would inherit the leadership in the world from the U.S., is up to when he spends his BILLIONS on making Globalism a reality? You already living within the belly of the beast and it all seems so very nice in that warm belly, doesn’t it?

    Lee S, please awaken, I beg of you, for as you slumber in your Socialist bed that you share with the beast and remain ignorant related to the lessons of history and the nature of man related to the exercise of existential power we are all diminished and our freedom as it is becomes questionable.

  • Andrew


    Read in the news today that the death toll of COROVID-19 topped 100 in the U.S.

    Here are last year’s flu stats:
    “The 2017-2018 flu season was severe for all US populations and resulted in an estimated 959,000 hospitalizations and 61,099 deaths”

    That year 61,099 people [deleted] DIED from the FLU. There was no panic. No massive shut down of the economy! Didn’t hear about one single school closeing. Now we are in a panic over death toll of 100.

    This hullabaloo is 100% political. It was CNN shouting “FIRE” in a crowded theater. It was designed to appear to tank the US economy to swing voters away from Trump in the November elections.

    YES it’s a nasty virus. YES it can kill you, if you are extraordinarily vulnerable. But “OMG THE WORLD IS ENDING!!!”???? Good Gawd. The people who have spread this panic need to be put in jail for the same reason you get put in jail for shouting “FIRE” in a crowded theater.

    Will the Lame Stream News ever publish the death toll related to the PANIC they have engendered? nope.

  • Andrew

    ugh, not last years. Two years ago.

  • Lee S

    You do understand that both you and I adhere to different THEORIES of government… It can never be proven that any form of government is correct, it can only be proven that a form is wrong.
    I understand that you have some sort of idea that you are trying to “educate” me, in actual fact, you are just proving your own closed mindedness. I have big problems with your form of government, you have with mine…. But our relative economies doing just fine…. or were before the virus.
    You might want to check this out..
    I acctually wasn’t aware of this fact until earlier… (As rated by the Economist, 2019… A trusted source.)
    The top 3 countries rated as the most democratic are Scandinavian… Including Sweden. The US is rated 25th. Perhaps it’s time to focus more on internal problems instead of arguing that you know better than the whole of Northern Europe.

  • Cotour



    These are all, in the case of America, Democrat / “Progressives” / Democrat Socialists mantras of operation, and they mean every inch of them. Those words and their combined implied intent have real meaning in the real world.

    Trump and his very simple America First / Make America Great Again / Keep America Great mantra is a direct and existential threat to the Democrats mantra.

    Be not confused and choose a side.

    Keeping in mind that I do not trust either side absolutely, all forms of governance are corrupt and a threat to the peoples freedoms. All of them, turn your back on them in trust and regret it without doubt.

  • Lee S

    Cotour, On a more cheerful note I have a great coin in my collection from The Iceni tribe C.25-43 AD……
    Should you wish to take a look…. Feel free to browse my other coins also…500BC thru to 1578.
    Believe it or not, I have a touch of knowledge regarding history! ;-)

  • Cotour

    WOOOOSH, right over your head.

    The subject was not Democracy, the subject was Globalism and the thought that an action that one might consider outrageous would not be plausible.


    Your tactic of distraction and obfuscation is useless here. I know it is by necessity your and their go to strategy, but not today, please.

    Awaken Lee S.

  • Cotour

    I did not want to post this again, but it appears necessary for Lee S’s reeducation. Just because in your reality this kind of thought process and action justification does not exist does not mean that it does not exist. Just like the shark that in fact ate you in my imaginary scenario, the shark or the “beast” cares not one second whether you believe in him or not.

    Lee S: What measures do you think Globalist government interests, assuming that you agree that they exist that is, would NOT undertake in order to install their paradigm in the world? Where do you think their morality would force them to draw their line? What are the moral rules that dictate where this line is drawn?

    STRATEGY OVER MORALITY / S.O.M. : The Existential Exercise Of Power And The Foundation Of Abuse Of Power
    Copyright, J.G.L. 2011, revised 1/20/18, revised 1/19/20


    How civilizations, governments and wars and their leadership throughout history are founded, fought and at their existential human core must operate.

    Strategy Over Morality describes a two-tiered “conversation” between a Public and their Empowered Leadership where the Public believes there is only a single, no tiered conversation occurring and that single conversation is assumed by the Public to relate to the Public’s morality and truth model perspective.

    A model in which leadership or their empowered subordinates within government can subjectively justify to choose to formulate an interpretation of their core fiduciary responsibilities which becomes paramount over and above the public’s truth and morality model. Where plausible deniability can be claimed when “immoral” acts or modified “truth” strategies are employed or executed by leadership, their subordinates or by arms length leadership proxies.

    In this “conversation”, leadership in the empowered “Political Realm” or their empowered subordinates step “down” to the public’s level, the “Pedestrian Realm”, and presents information, agenda, policy or strategy in a tailored, palatable package the public can believe and comfortably accept. Leadership then steps back to their “higher” level, formulates and executes “necessary”, by their subjective standards, agenda, policy and strategy where the public’s interpretation of morality or truth is not relevant or becomes optional.

    CONCLUSION: The public lives and operates under a subjective moral code or within a “Pedestrian Realm” perspective which they assume their leadership which exists within the “Political Realm” is constrained by. This is a subjective false perspective conclusion on the part of the public. Leadership is not about morality, truth and honesty, leadership is about the fundamental exercise of power and survival.

    PUBLIC OR PEDESTRIAN REALM: The individual citizens of any civilization, society or country.

    LEADERSHIP OR POLITICAL REALM: Any macro empowered governing entity or their direct subordinates concerned with the formulation and implementation of laws, strategies and policies, both civil and military.

    LEADERSHIPS CORE PRIME DIRECTIVE: Above all else the securing, promotion and survival of the society, culture, territory, power and treasure.

  • Buck

    The Chinese dictator would love to see regime change in the US.
    But this virus will jeopardize his authoritarian control over 1.4 billion people.
    It’s easier to attribute this virulent outbreak to incompetence rather than cunning.
    Of course Xi is rather cunning.

  • Cotour


    “But this virus will jeopardize his authoritarian control over 1.4 billion people.”

    How? Other than his fellow Communist rulers over turning him because the plans of the “president for life” president Xi went awry (Have a bullet put in his head, or he would just not be seen any more, he “became ill”).

    The people of China can become as displeased as they like with there president for life, and it would not really matter that much. He is ready to kill them by the millions if necessary. He has the guns and the men at the ready, just like in the Roman legions.

    So other than president for life Xi having to face international scrutiny and criticism, how would his control be threatened in your scenario?

    The president for life must have Trump removed by some means, Trump in real terms threatens his power and possibly his life. Can he survive another 4 years of Trump? Trump and his continued administration is the issue and not the president for life worrying about his people not being happy with him.

    And so if you agree with me, what will the Chinese leader NOT do to make what must happen happen?

  • mpthompson

    As much as the wanna-be authoritarians may attempt to take temporary advantage of the Covid-19 situation (particularly here in California), the world-wide reaction, whether justified or not, is going to be a very serious step backward for the globalist.

    Will the general public be sympathetic to arguments for open borders? Not a chance. With the economic and job loss fallout, there will likely be calls to drastically reduce, if not eliminate H1B programs. Assuming Trump remains in office, the decoupling from China will likely occur at a 10x rate than it might otherwise have occurred. The public will be much more willing to pay higher costs for domestically manufactured goods and accept high tariffs on foreign goods than they otherwise would be if it avoids the next multi-trillion dollar hit to our economy. Finally, if gun and amunition sales is any indicator, there will be higher support for 2A issues among the public than less.

    What we are going through is painful, but the end result doesn’t seem likely to be playing into the hands of the globalist. If we can keep our wits about us, the end result will be a much stronger United States.

  • Lee S

    @Cotour, I didn’t mean to use the democracy index as point in my argument, I just found it interesting, VERY surprising! , And food for thought.
    Quote from myself “I understand that you have some sort of idea that you are trying to “educate” me, in actual fact, you are just proving your own closed mindedness. ”
    I genuinely need no form of re-education, I am fairly intelligent, pretty well informed, well traveled and balanced in viewpoint… ( As I’ve said many times, I’m concidered a very centralist socialist… You have read my thoughts several times… No need to reiterate.) Just remember, because I disagree with you, doesn’t mean I think less of you.
    Did you check out my coin?

  • Max

    We had an earthquake an hour ago here in Salt Lake City, fun stuff. 5.7 on the Richter scale. The best part is the coronavirus news has been pushed out of the headlines. Power outage near Saltair epicenter (Carnival of souls) and Airport closed, Control tower damaged. Some structures lost some bricks, and the angel Moroni on top of the iconic Mormon temple lost his trumpet.
    The funny part is they’re telling people to stay away from the buildings, and to stay away from each other so that you do not infect others with the coronavirus. Even first responders are reluctant to help with out protective clothing. What we are programmed to do an emergency is been rewritten as we speak. Everything is changing.

  • Lee S

    @mpthompson, you are spot on!! Over here in Europe I have not heard a peep regarding how wonderful the EU is, and even the left leaning press I read have finally shut up about Brexit…. Every cloud has a silver lining!
    The fact is that every country in Europe are shutting down their borders and restricting movement… Everything the EU don’t stand for, yet We hear nothing at all from the European parliament. Europe is going to learn a lesson which can’t be easily forgotten when this has all past… Namely, when the chips are down, it’s still every country for themselves.
    Presumably the same lesson is been taught all over the globe…. I think things are changing in a very basic way… If it will be good or bad remains to be seen… But the times are a changin’

  • Cototur

    Mpthompson: I agree with your ultimate resulting eventuality. But desperate people will do desperate things in order for things and established trajectories to remain in place that they perceive as being in their interests.

    Lee S: I do not consider you unintelligent, not at all. My point to you is your perspective is narrow and self serving.

  • Lee S

    @Max, funny we come to the same conclusion, for different reasons, but at the same time!
    Not so funny, your earthquake…. I hope you, yours and your fellow citizens are safe, and stay safe…
    I’d rather have Corona than an earthquake any day. :-(

  • Andrew: You are new here (probably coming from the link on Instapundit that Sarah Hoyt posted last night), so you might not realize that I do not tolerate obscenities in my posts. And replacing one or two letters doesn’t work either. I have deleted the curse word.

    This is a warning. Do it again and I will suspend commenting for a week. Do a third time and you get banned.

  • Lee S

    More boots on the ground….

    I just checked my banking app, and my bank is offering a month’s default on mortgages without penalty to anyone financially affected…. And my meager savings have suffered a 5.6% loss this week… ( Like all good socialists I have my money in managed funds), strangly enough the only fund to be in profit is my high risk medical industry account…. Go figure!
    ( Are my boots reports welcome? I know there are few Europeans here, so I hope reports from over the water are welcome)

  • mpthompson

    Another silver lining in a very dark cloud is that we can expect a rapid and massive shift to on-line university classes (and perhaps high-school). My daughter is in the University California system and many (all?) campuses have already shited to on-line classes for the remainder of this semester and the coming Spring quarter. Much of this shift will stick and it portends a massive change in high-level level education that was inevitable anyway, but will now happen in weeks rather than years or decades. This shift will drive new entrepreneurial driven solutions into an education system that has been fighting tooth and nail for the status quo. It may become much more difficult for the leftist to maintain their stranglehold on education in what is likely to be a more competitive environment.

  • mpthompson

    Lee, I’ll speak for myself, but I always welcome and appreciate perspectives from outside the US. I strongly suspect the others do as well. Please continue the boots-on-the-ground reports.

  • Tom D Perkins

    “Coronavirus cases have dropped sharply in South Korea” <– As a result of strenuous control efforts, yes.

    "Lower death rate estimates for coronavirus, especially for non-elderly, provides hope " <– Hope for what? It's still twice as likely as the common flu to kill young people, clear down to age 10.

    "86% of people with coronavirus are walking around undetected, study says" <– If you test almost no one, you get that. It's not good, it's how is spread quickly throughout the population, becoming endemic among survivors — the way the common cold and flu are.

    " A review of the disease on the confined Diamond Princess " <– Shows 1%+ of those who get it die from it. To the extent they were confined, it was in their own rooms and with conditioned air. So what?

    None of that contradicts American responses to date, after the failure of the CDC meant we could not adopt South Korea's successful containment efforts.

  • wayne

    On a pessimistic level– our so called leaders ARE going to drop (borrowed) money by helicopter, they ARE going to continue to blow the budget to Mars, Fake News Inc., will continue to lie, and Billions of borrowed money will be lost to waste fraud and abuse.
    Swine are lining up to the biggest feeding trough in history.
    -War & Plague, are the Mother of all Tyranny.

    On a more optimistic level–
    This looks very hopeful:
    “An Effective Treatment for Coronavirus (COVID-19)”
    James M. Todaro, MD
    Stanford University School of Medicine, UAB School of Medicine and National Academy of Sciences
    March 13, 2020

    “Recent guidelines from South Korea and China report that chloroquine is an effective antiviral therapeutic treatment against Coronavirus Disease 2019. Use of chloroquine (tablets) is showing favorable outcomes in humans infected with Coronavirus including faster time to recovery and shorter hospital stay. US CDC research shows that chloroquine also has strong potential as a prophylactic (preventative) measure against coronavirus in the lab, while we wait for a vaccine to be developed. Chloroquine is an inexpensive, globally available drug that has been in widespread human use since 1945 against malaria, autoimmune and various other conditions.”
    “Chloroquine and its analogs has been manufactured and distributed at global scale since approximately 1945. While there has recently been a shortage of N95 protective masks, medical systems can adjust and dramatically increase the supply of chloroquine in the world. Chloroquine tablets and intravenous formulations are generic and easy to produce.”
    –“As of February 26, 2020, the UK government has added chloroquine to the list of medicines that cannot be parallel exported from the UK.”
    –“In early February, Chongqing Kangle Pharmaceutical was requested by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, Consumption Division to promptly increase the manufacturing and production of the active pharmaceutical ingredients chloroquine phosphate despite slowed production during the Chinese New Year.”

  • wayne

    Kelly’s Heroes –
    “Oddball takes a rest”

  • pzatchok

    Woof-woof…that’s my other dog impersonation

  • Cotour

    So far its a “wet” market origin.

    And still it produces the two things that can take Trump out, massive stock market reversal and potentially economic consequences not seen since 1929.

    Think of all of the people who are running on their credit cards and their weekly pay, and have little or nor cash on hand or savings. I see it all the time, in many cases a waitress for instance who opens her wallet and she goes through 20 credit cards to choose one. I may comment that all of those credit cards is not a good idea. And they will tell me that they know, but its how they manage their finances. Chilling but a reality for probably more than you would think.

    She still has those monthly carrying charges to pay, where does that come from now that she has no job and may not have one for many months? Unemployment will take up some of the slack, for as long as it lasts. Then what?

    This is a transformational event in the world, business will be done in a very different manner in the future.

  • Cotour

    Wayne, an excellent point.

    What necessary prosecutions of those who attempted treason against our president will be gone forward with at this point?

    Answer, none.

    Provides solutions for problems on so many levels.

  • Milt

    It seems to me that these two sources pretty much summarize the current state of the “established scientific understanding” of the CV outbreak:

    One question, I suppose, is how many people — whether in Washington or not — have the basic science literacy to understand any of this? Or, to question it.

    The conclusions of the Imperial College study, at least, are quite straightforward:

    “Perhaps our most significant conclusion is that mitigation is unlikely to be
    feasible without emergency surge capacity limits of the UK and US health-
    care systems being exceeded many times over. In the most effective miti-
    gation strategy examined, which leads to a single, relatively short epidemic
    (case isolation, household quarantine and social distancing of the elderly),
    the surge limits for both general ward and ICU beds would be exceeded by
    at least 8-fold under the more optimistic scenario for critical care require-
    ments that we examined.In addition, even if all patients were able to be
    treated, we predict there would still be in the order of 250,000 deaths in GB,
    and 1.1-1.2 million in the US.”

    Yet, per the article and comments on this site, the Imperial College study is apparently not being seen as “real” science, and ideological (i.e., Libertarian / Market Fundamentalist) thinking seems to be driving the discussion. But which interpretation better better represents reality as we believe that we understand it? And should our actions be driven by ideology or some “pure” form of the data?

    The problem seems to be that most people — inevitably — also analyze / interpret the data itself based on their own preferred ideology / belief system, and cherry pick the “facts” that are most in accordance with their their own worldview. (Recall the debate over anthropogenic climate change.) In this sense, as the deconstructionists have taught us, there is no “unbiased” truth. So — again — which approach gives the better picture of reality?

    My own reaction, for what it is worth, is that “both” things are probably true. Yes, we face a very real health crisis, but I also — per many of the comments — am not very pleased with the heavy-handed, statist options that we seem to have been given. Should we, then, just let the Corona Virus burn through the population (possibly overwhelming our health
    care system), go on about our business, and start over without all of the “inconvenient” old people like myself?


  • Cotour


    The people of America, and the world for that matter, have been presented with several versions of information / reality related to this virus and will develop a set of rational precautions to mitigate its potential. They are aware. Be aware of what you touch, wash your hands, stay away from others etc, etc.

    The media has served their purpose, no matter how biased or slanted they may be presenting the “News”.

    PS: Being an older person is not “Inconvenient”, its just a condition one finds themselves in. Be well.

  • wayne

    take it easy, avoid watching cable news, [Do not look at Drudge] and be highly leery of Modelling.
    [Washington Post = they manufacture lies, wholesale. If they told me the sky was blue, I’d wonder what lie they were perpetrating.]

    excellent dog imitation.

    Negative Waves

  • Lee S

    @Wayne quote.. “Use of chloroquine (tablets) is showing favorable outcomes in humans infected with Coronavirus including faster time to recovery and shorter hospital stay. “….. How ironic that such an old drug,and a drug derived from quinine could potentially be a life saver… Fingers crossed! And have any studies been done on the response to Gin and Tonic? I’ll gladly volunteer for that study!
    @Coutour…. Quote “Unemployment will take up some of the slack, for as long as it lasts. Then what?”….. I’m not baiting now, I’m making a genuine point, in Sweden, which has a large social welfare purse, she will be assisted until she can go back to work… Admittedly all this OPM may run out before the end of this crisis, but we certainly have more in the crisis purse per capita than many, many other countries. Indeed, this is the absolute acid test…. If Sweden’s waitress ends up ok, and the US’s waitress ends up homeless…. It proves my point. Let’s hope neither end up struggling too much!
    Boots on the ground update…
    All pupils at my daughter’s school… ( Years 5-7 ) are being issued laptops ( I think Chromebooks) tomorrow, “just in case…
    And this is both stunning, amazing, and troubling all at the same time…. Tomorrow’s crafts project is “make your own mask”….
    Genius or twisted? I have no idea…. I’m leaning two ways at the same time…. But I still agree with everyone… Things are changing.

  • sippin_bourbon


    Regarding the so called “democracy index”.

    1.From the very link you provided, there is no transparency on how this idex is formed.
    2. Its based on a survey of questions to ” various experts” (no mention of qualifications, how many, etc).
    3. Seems to favor socialist countries that still have a monarchy… hmmm. (a monarch is a monarch, regardless of being “Constitutional” or not. If you cannot vote for them then not a full democracy. This is a fact that seems over looked by those surveyed).
    4. Has a whole section on “The capability of the civil servants to implement policies”. But does not say of that is a good or a bad thing. (Hint:, it is a very bad thing)

    I could go on, but feel like I am wasting time.
    This “index” is a joke, put together by socialist that wanted to make themselves look better.

    It also ignores one very important point. The United States of America is not a democracy.
    It is a Republic. We have, in black and white, a Republican form of government.

    “You do understand that both you and I adhere to different THEORIES of government… It can never be proven that any form of government is correct…”

    Ignoratio elenchi (Irrelevant Conclusion) or a straw man. Pick your fallacy.

    No one is anyone is trying to prove a particular form of government “correct”.
    Correct implies a system without error, which we know is entirely impossible for government (theoretical or otherwise).

    What can be proven is if one is better than another.
    Which several people posting here have done repeatedly.

  • sippin_bourbon

    re: Kelly’s Heroes.

    “I’ve had nothing but good thoughts about that damn bridge…”

    Such a great line.

    I need to borrow from Oddball. Next time my boss asks me what I have been doing…
    “Drinking some wine, eating some cheese, catching some rays…”

  • Lee S

    If you were familiar with The Economist you might trust its results more… It is deeply impartial, and one of the few “paper” periodicals I still read… Dig a little deeper and I guarantee you will find all the metrics… Anyone who is familiar with the publication will back me up that it is honest and affiliated with neither left, center or right.. they just speak as they see.
    As for calling me out on logical fallacies… Straw man argument yaself!! My point is true… You can never assert a system is wrong until it fails. You can also not empirically prove your social system is “better” than Sweden’s by any given metric…. Go and try…. ( With respected and impartial studies..)

  • Lee S

    One little parting question quote ‘Has a whole section on “The capability of the civil servants to implement policies”. But does not say of that is a good or a bad thing. (Hint:, it is a very bad thing)…. ”
    Perhaps it’s a translation thing, but our definition of a civil servant is a government worker who’s job is to turn legislation into practice…. If you really think there should be “middle men” who can’t do their job, yet get paid…. And stop the business of government without being elected or oversight… It’s your system that is broken.

  • Lee S

    Ok, when baited, I cannot help but bite… I guess I’m the traditional English bulldog, but I’m going to try very hard to not bite no more in this, or other Corona related threads….. We are in the poop one way or another… And I would like very much to keep the conversation on topic…. Of course politics comes into everything, and the handling of this crisis will undoubtedly be political, but let’s keep this on topic… I will argue my ass off, as you know, but I’d rather keep it separate. Politics tomorrow…. Facts regarding the demon virus today…
    Boots on the ground reports welcome from you guys also!! ( It’s nice to know we’re all in the poop together!!)
    Stay safe guys…. I gotta go sleep… Bloody work tomorrow! ;-)

  • sippin_bourbon

    I am quite familiar with the Economist. I never said they were a bad publication.
    That does not change the fact that there is no transparency in the creation of this particular index.
    It also is based on London, and leans to the liberal.

    Everyone is biased. Agreeing with the bias does not mean it is non-existent.

  • Cotour

    Lee S: Clarification.

    The waitress that I spoke of participates in an insurance program administered by the state that is funded by herself and her employer, a “Social Program” of choice if you will. A line is drawn. The greater point here to me is her other choice which is to choose to live way beyond her means through her credit cards, that is just a very bad practice.

    And these bad choices are promoted by our consumer culture and creates these potentials for these bad choices. Freedom, as it is, is a double edged sword that can cut both ways. A sword that can be used to defend yourself from the beast and build a life, or to cut your own head off.

    There is no replacement for some degree of common sense and being aware of what you should and should not be partaking in, most people are immersed in their subjective reality and can not see the forest for the trees. What will be the result of these conditions is that people will be thinking much more clearly and with no more confusion based in the fantasy of having the appearance of having more choices than less.

    America and the world is going to go through a transformational event and will be restructured in many ways, and their will be pain.

    The trick to surviving and moving into the future? Keeping your head and day by day taking care of business. this too will pass.

  • commodude

    The Economist is far from impartial.

    Your bent toward socialism colors your view of the magazine, it tends left, and has for a long time.

  • sippin_bourbon

    Rule of law? Who needs that in an over-hyped crisis?

    The City of Philly has a list of crimes that will no longer require arrest.
    The document with this policy was leaked.

    The Commissioner of Police was forced to clarify that they were still enforcing laws, but simply issuing “Arrest Warrants”.
    So it is a officially a catch and release program.

    If an officer happens upon someone in the act, the person will be detained, identified, “relevant paperwork” filed, and then immediately released.

    At this time, I have not found if the police will respond to a 911 call or other report of a crime after the fact for these crimes.

    They are claiming that these are “non violent” crimes. But in court, if they ever get around to actually arresting the perpetrator, it will be your word against theirs if a knife was flashed, a gun brandished, a threat issued, or some other form of intimidation used when the crime was committed.

    I wait to see if other departments will follow suit. To avoid infecting prison populations or wide-spread infection of LE personnel, I suspect many will start to scale back enforcement.
    If they have already started they are not publicizing it.

    But the next time someone says, “What do you need it for?” I have my answer.
    In a time of crisis, Law Enforcement will not be there.

    Link to a screen shot of the document:

  • Andi

    From the second link: “Philadelphia Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw” – how appropriate!

  • wayne

    sippin_bourbon & commodude
    Ref: The Economist — they are FAR from impartial. They have an Agenda that does not include free-market capitalism.
    (and… “British Conservatives,” love their National Health, and will NEVER touch it. They are “severely conservative,’ like that Puke Romney is…. ya know.?)

    Lee– you can get your quinine from tonic, but the concentration is fairly low.

  • wayne

    remembering the People, that keep us alive—

    Grapes of Wrath
    “Two for a Penny ” scene

  • Lee S

    Good morning guys…. Boots on the ground… My cough has got worse, if I breath too deep I hack up a lung… I’m not speculating anything at this time.
    My son is about to start his online schooling… First class in Swedish. Apparently they are using Google docs, with the tutor and student both operating within an open document. This is going to be interesting in a class of 22 students. I don’t see how the tutor has any chance of watching over 22 separate documents live.
    It’s an experiment, this has never been done before.
    @Wayne… Quote..”you can get your quinine from tonic, but the concentration is fairly low.”….. But surely this can only mean you have to drink more of it! ;-)

  • Lee S

    @Sippin…. Quote ‘The City of Philly has a list of crimes that will no longer require arrest.”
    The police in the UK have had this problem for years… But thru underfunding rather than a virus. I have a friend who is a desk Sargent over there, and he has told me they also have a list of crimes not to attend. If your car gets stolen, and you call the police, you are given a crime number, the theft is reported, and nothing more happens. A field day for criminals. I hope this isn’t the start of a slippery slope for Philly, I don’t know the statistics, but if the police implement this policy, expect a massive increase in crime. Those that have no respect for law will have little respect for Corona.

  • Lee S

    @everyone…. There is a right wing columnist I follow in my old local newspaper (online also now, of course.).. yes a right wing columnist! He posted a cracker today, I read it and thought you guys here would laugh also……. Discussing the snowflake left press…… “In May we will celebrate the 75th anniversary of Victory in Europe. If some of today’s hacks had been working back then, and were fixated on challenging every word from Downing Street, what sort of stories and headlines would they have produced in May 1945? “Suicide in the bunker – could counselling have saved Mr Hitler?” ”
    It made me giggle…. I hope it raises a smile here also!

  • wayne

    Who recalls this Gem?

    The Twilight Zone –
    “The Shelter”

  • Ian C.

    Brian, I like your idea of a new liberties organization. I’d like to see an approach that also covers (at least) the Western world with national chapters. Harmful measures from one country are copied to others so fast and often enough they coordinate their attacks on civil liberties with the same legal tricks, moral arguments, globally networked NGOs etc. Attacks on freedom are a global threat and require a global response.

    Lee, get yourself tested. I’m not joking.

  • sippin_bourbon


    “Perhaps it’s a translation thing, but our definition of a civil servant is a government worker who’s job is to turn legislation into practice…. If you really think there should be “middle men” who can’t do their job, yet get paid…. And stop the business of government without being elected or oversight… It’s your system that is broken.”

    The problem is not turning law into practice. The problem is when the bureaucracy decides that it needs to expand on those laws and grant itself authority never intended in the original law. Example, the abuse of the Clean Water act. Clean water important, yes, fining and threatening farmers with prison for building a pond to water their animals, no.

  • sippin_bourbon

    “My point is true… You can never assert a system is wrong until it fails”
    That’s not what you said. I quoted what you said.

    As for this statement, it is false. I can assert a tyrannical system that keeps its people in poverty and isolation to preserve its power is wrong. Example, the Norks. They have not totally failed yet, but it IS wrong.

    I have a theory, and wish I had more time to research for it. But I suggest the reason why socialism is so palatable among Europeans is because every country was originally beholden to a Monarch. Acceptance of tyranny is built into the system. I can expand on this some other time.

  • Lee S

    @sippin…. It is a translation thing…. In the UK a civil servant has no responsibility for creating law, that is down to the elected officials. Their job is purely to keep the wheels of government turning, basically pen pushers. It could reasonably be argued that there are WAY too many of them, at least in the UK and Sweden.. I’m guessing over there also.
    I’ve no idea about your clean water act, but it sounds like something the EU would try and implement!

  • Edward

    A couple of days ago in another thread of the same topic, I almost suggested that in a few weeks we would know whether the lives saved were worth the destruction to our economy, lifestyles, businesses, jobs, and retirement savings and the fear and panic created in our daily lives, but it occurred to me that someone might say that it was all worth it to save just one life. So I didn’t make that comment, at that time.

    Whether or not someone were to say such a thing, it seems to me that if we are willing to do all this for this one flu, then why not do the same for all the other flus we suffer? We lose tens of thousands of lives each year due to these flus, hospital beds are tied up, and hundreds of millions of sick days are are used up each year, but we do not go through this much trouble to prevent those from happening. Why not?

    Could it be that there is a limit to the value of one human life, or even to tens of thousands of human lives? Certainly we would not have the efforts of all 320 million Americans be expended for a year solely to save one other American life, so there certainly is a limit to the value of one life. By extension, there is a limit to the value of tens of thousands of lives. We may be exploring that limit right now.

  • Cotour

    In the macro, the big scheme, we as individuals, are worth exactly, zero.

    In the macro who emerges from this financial transformational world wide event, whether it be a function of nature or a function of strategy and agenda is what is of the greatest import.

  • Cotour

    PS: What is the financial / economic model that will emerge from this transformational event?

    This is where the future economy and who controls it will be established. This might be seen as an opportunity to get most everyone to surrender all of their cash as they attempt to stay a float. A good reason and vehicle to destroy most all debt / ownership and recast the worlds economic model.

    Who will emerge in the end the victor? Who has the most debt? Who has the most assets to support their fiat currency? Who has the most gold or precious metals?

    Again, the timing of this event and the opportunities that it presents and facilitates is in a word, as Joe Biden would say, very interesting.

  • Lee S

    I just read an interesting article regarding the pandemic on RT…. (Yes, yes, I know!, I also read Al Jazeera, the Guardian, the BBC, The Mail, and Behind the Black.. I understand all the biases… To left and right…)
    Anyway, this essay is genuinely non partisan, and raises some interesting points…. A 3 minutes read I recommend having a quick look at.

  • wayne

    “I’m Smart!”

  • pzatchok

    Fredo was a great character. And the actor played him great.

    “I remember when I first went fishing saying the ‘Our Father’. I caught the biggest fish………”

  • richard korenfield

    I heard you, Robert Zimmerman, last night on CoasttoCoast. Some of your stats are right but generally you are sadly mistaken if you really think there isn’t much cause for trepidation. I just heard that today (7-2-2020) there are more than 10,000 new cases in FL (a new record) and of course other states like Cal., Texas, Ariz. and a few others are setting sad new records. Positivity rates are increasing rapidly. Covid-19 is spreading throughout the country. When you said that the number of deaths is overreported you stated a lie because nearly all reputable doctors and scientists believe that the number of deaths is probably about 20% higher. There are now officially 130,000 deaths. So really there are about 156,000. There are now about 2,700,000 cases in the U.S. Of course there are actually 5 -10 times that amount. Globally, the numbers are skyrocketing. If you believe that all the above is not cause for much concern,
    then you are sadly mistaken. I actually enjoyed the show last night. CoasttoCoast is a great show when it deals with space, astronomy, etc. but unfortunately the show is probably the world’s greatest source for misinformation and conspiracy theories.

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