Conscious Choice cover

From the press release: In this ground-breaking new history of early America, historian Robert Zimmerman not only exposes the lie behind The New York Times 1619 Project that falsely claims slavery is central to the history of the United States, he also provides profound lessons about the nature of human societies, lessons important for Americans today as well as for all future settlers on Mars and elsewhere in space.

 
Conscious Choice: The origins of slavery in America and why it matters today and for our future in outer space, is a riveting page-turning story that documents how slavery slowly became pervasive in the southern British colonies of North America, colonies founded by a people and culture that not only did not allow slavery but in every way were hostile to the practice.  
Conscious Choice does more however. In telling the tragic history of the Virginia colony and the rise of slavery there, Zimmerman lays out the proper path for creating healthy societies in places like the Moon and Mars.

 

“Zimmerman’s ground-breaking history provides every future generation the basic framework for establishing new societies on other worlds. We would be wise to heed what he says.” —Robert Zubrin, founder of founder of the Mars Society.

 

Available everywhere for $3.99 (before discount) at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and all ebook vendors, or direct from the ebook publisher, ebookit. And if you buy it from ebookit you don't support the big tech companies and I get a bigger cut much sooner.


Failed past predictions from a COVID-19 “expert”

Neil Ferguson, the Imperial College London epidemiologist and professor of mathematical biology that has been called the “gold standard” of disease modeling, according to the New York Times and Washington Post, and whose initial predictions that the Wuhan flu would kill more than two million people in the United States and half a million in the UK, has in the past routinely made absurdly wrong and vastly overstated predictions for numerous other diseases.

The article compared Ferguson’s predictions with the real data for the following:

Bird Flu: Ferguson predicted up to 200 million deaths worldwide. So far 455 people have died.

Mad Cow Disease: Ferguson predicted up to 150,000 deaths. So far 178 people have died.

Ferguson’s predictions for coronavirus have been as bad. His initial prediction of 2.2 million deaths in the U.S. is going to be so wrong that every politician and individual that cited it to justify the Wuhan panic should be made to apologize, publicly.

As COVID-19 numbers have come in, Ferguson downgraded his predictions, lowering his UK prediction from 500,000 to only 20,000. At this moment the death toll in the Great Britain is under 9,000. It is very unlikely it will reach Ferguson’s revised number. And even if that number ends up close to accurate, it just illustrates that Ferguson’s ability to predict is garbage. His only accurate number was issued on March 26, when almost anyone could have made a prediction of reasonable accuracy.

So we come to the fundamental question: Why have our press and politicians repeatedly relied on this quack’s predictions? Could it be that his over-the-top cries that the world is about to end might serve their interests, and not the general public’s? Might it be possible that they are using him to convince the pubic to give them more power? Could it?

These are valid questions. And the history of the past two decades justifies asking them, as the track record of our mainstream press and politicians during that time has consistently shown they are not interested in the public’s needs, but their own, exclusively.

Readers!
 

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41 comments

  • wayne

    Just a reminder, not to confuse Neil Ferguson with Niall Ferguson:

    “Niall Ferguson: COVID-19 in the Light of History & Network Science”
    Hoover Virtual Policy Briefing
    April 1, 2020
    https://youtu.be/EyOvYZfB7JA
    53:46

  • Ian C.

    Bob,

    “Ferguson downgraded his predictions, lowering his UK prediction from 500,000 to only 20,000. At this moment the death toll in the Great Britain is under 9,000. It is very unlikely it will reach Ferguson’s revised number.”

    20,000 will be reached around April 20.

    “His only accurate number was issued on March 26, when almost anyone could have made a prediction of reasonable accuracy.”

    At the same time I’ve made two predictions here on BtB for the US and Sweden. On April 16 I’ll compare my predictions made for April 5 and April 15 with the reported numbers.

  • Ian C: Your quoting of me is intellectually dishonest, as you leave out my next very important qualifying sentence. Here is the full quote.

    As COVID-19 numbers have come in, Ferguson downgraded his predictions, lowering his UK prediction from 500,000 to only 20,000. At this moment the death toll in the Great Britain is under 9,000. It is very unlikely it will reach Ferguson’s revised number. And even if that number ends up close to accurate, it just illustrates that Ferguson’s ability to predict is garbage. His only accurate number was issued on March 26, when almost anyone could have made a prediction of reasonable accuracy.

    Clever editing to distort the full meaning of what someone writes is not very nice.

  • Andrew_W

    Mr. Zimmerman, was Ferguson’s earlier figure of 500,000 for the UK based on a “do nothing” scenario? If it was, that is it was made before the nation acted to inhibit the spread of the virus with no foreknowledge of what those actions might be, I think you could be accused of misrepresenting the basis of his projection. Ditto for forecasts for the US that produced figures in the millions that were made before the nation acted to inhibit the spread of the virus and when the forecaster had no foreknowledge of what those actions might be in that case either.

  • Andrew_W

    Ferguson downgraded his predictions, lowering his UK prediction from 500,000 to only 20,000. At this moment the death toll in the Great Britain is under 9,000. It is very unlikely it will reach Ferguson’s revised number.
    Take into account the current daily UK increase of nearly a thousand, which will carry on at close to that rate for nearly a week, then take into account that the rate of decline in deaths has typically been at a slower rate that the rate of increase to the peak (South Korea, Italy, China etc.), and I don’t see how the poms are going to total less than 35,000 deaths by mid-June.

  • Ian C.

    Bob,

    If you feel misquoted, please be assured that I acted in good faith. The first refers to the 20,000 and the second to making a prediction in late March. Nothing else needed to be quoted in my opinion as the context of the quotes is easily available on the very same page. My intention wasn’t to prove you wrong — it wasn’t about you at all — but to take two statements and see whether my simple predictions perform well (which we can check in a couple of days). I treat this as friendly discourse, not as confrontation.

    For a more general comment on your blog post:

    One of my backgrounds is in modeling & simulation. I’m aware of the multiple issues models of complex systems can have and know the many pitfalls researchers can fall into (including biases like over-confidence or the inability to separate the model from political preferences and skewed incentives to take the most dramatic scenarios for grants and vanity). I also know how difficult it is to communicate models and their meaning and limitations to policymakers and the press, who usually don’t understand how to treat model-based scenarios properly and who prefer to just hear those outcomes that fit their own interests. And once interest groups get involved…

    When I learned in mid-January what was going on in Wuhan, reading reports and seeing videos (before they were censored by the commies), I found that this might be really serious, that it was coming to the West fast (air travel) and spread undetected, that it will be ignored first, and will be met by an unprepared and potentially overwhelmed health care system.

    If I were a modeler in a public health position and think that something serious is coming, knowing that careful and balanced warnings get usually ignored, boy would I make dramatic predictions under the (valid) assumption that if nothing is done that this might have serious consequences. Considering the massive uncertainties in the medical dimension (characteristics of the disease, surge capacity and performance of the health care system) and the human dimension (how will people behave/react, one has to start with [most likely wrong] assumptions that influence the model significantly), I would see to get people working as soon as possible to take mitigative steps and gather data. A nice “would you please” doesn’t do the job.

    An additional thought: when the eventual real-world outcomes are compared with the (initial) predictions, it’s hard to say how much the alarming statements helped to act early on to prevent the scenarios manifesting themselves. If that results in less trust of modelers by decision-makers, it might make it necessary to be even more alarming next time to grab their attention.

  • wayne

    Cotour–
    Ref: Fauci…. he’s a prime example of exactly why we shouldn’t allow un-elected technocrats to rule over us.

  • Ian C wrote:

    If I were a modeler in a public health position and think that something serious is coming, knowing that careful and balanced warnings get usually ignored, boy would I make dramatic predictions under the (valid) assumption that if nothing is done that this might have serious consequences. Considering the massive uncertainties in the medical dimension (characteristics of the disease, surge capacity and performance of the health care system) and the human dimension (how will people behave/react, one has to start with [most likely wrong] assumptions that influence the model significantly), I would see to get people working as soon as possible to take mitigative steps and gather data. A nice “would you please” doesn’t do the job. [emphasis mine]

    The highlighted words tell me all. In other words, you would lie to get everyone else to panic to get what you think should be done, in your infinite, all-knowing wisdom. You wouldn’t leave it to them to use their own judgment, based on a presentation of the real facts. “No, we can’t have that. I am all-wise, they’re just ignorant hicks.”

    I have been watching this dishonest approach used by the global-warming crowd now for almost thirty years. Every single one of their predictions has been gloriously wrong, and yet they still keep making them, and the press still keeps buying them.

    Living a lie is no way to live. And I would rather not tell you what I think of anyone who would use a lie to manipulate others, to gain control over them.

  • Ian C.

    Bob,

    It’s quite unfortunate that you treat me as the enemy now. I just tell about the dilemma and incentives a modeler might have. And I make testable short-term predictions, am transparent about how I arrive at them, and have no problem with admitting when I’m wrong.
    Fine, I will no longer make predictions or quote you, as this seems to be interpreted as hostility. Let’s just check later how my numbers for the US and Sweden (April 15) and the UK (April 20) performed and leave it at that.

  • Ian C: I don’t see you as an enemy, but I do see your last quote as the poster child for the modern generation of modelers, willing to overstate the danger even if their models really don’t call for it, merely to get the government to do things they want.

  • Ian C.

    Bob, I mentioned the problem of communication with policymakers. Most have a background in law or politics and such, quantitative thinking and the dynamics of complex systems is usually not their strength. Politicians and political bureaucrats have usually other things on their minds and discussing the subtleties of scenarios and model uncertainty is beyond their attention span — you say X as a conditional possibility, they take X as either a certainty or impossibility with little in-between and run with it. Plus that every interest group whines and they know that most of the whining is overblown, which makes the threshold to get their attention even higher: you have to whine louder. That leads to an unhealthy relationship between researchers, policymakers, the press, and the public. It can grow into a huge mess of wrong incentives, (political) corruption, misunderstanding. That was what I tried to say when I gave the modeler’s perspective.

  • Ian C: One question: My impression was that you endorsed the approach of “whining louder.” Do you? Because if you do, then I would not trust your models.

    Nor would I ever want anyone to hire you. The criteria should always be to do good work, not political work.

    As Mark Twain said many times, “When in doubt tell the truth.”

  • john hare

    I have a small construction company, and we fire customers for exaggerating, threatening and lying. Probably three quarters of my work is verbal or handshake contract. Can’t do that with people you can’t trust. I see politicians, and people that inform politicians, in the same light, as in there should be a mechanism for their immediate removal from office for some forms of dishonesty.

  • wayne

    “Tell the Truth or at least don’t lie”
    Dr. Jordan Peterson / Akira the Don
    Feb, 2018
    https://youtu.be/iA8n9JTTM38
    4:38

  • commodude

    Once you alter the model for a purpose, you’re just a lobbyist, not a scientist of a mathematician.

    I refuse to alter business estimates to fit situations. I irritate people, but my integrity remains intact. My estimates are normally correct, which makes people believe them and take them on face value.

  • Ian C.

    Bob,

    “Endorsing” doesn’t describe it, I’m just telling how the game is played. Many researchers and engineers make the mistake to think that their “pure product” is sufficient and leave out the important part of selling it to the right people in the right ways that work. Careers plateau early and startups don’t get off the ground when people don’t know how to sell their stuff in their specific industry — all the hard work is wasted then. Many such cases. Sad.

    john hare,

    It’s different when you talk to peers or customers who actively want a working solution. Obviously it’s a reciprocal relationship. If you have to hard sell to a customer base like I described in an earlier comment, it’s different. They get what they incentivize for. If you have to whine louder to get their attention, whine louder or leave the business.

  • Cotour

    Q: Why was ANYTHING said about this virus by China believed for one second? Why is anything that China says about anything ever taken on face value? When ever I hear some statement that the Chinese government makes my immediate response is: They are lying. That is the starting point, then you go from there.

    https://youtu.be/azcoaFKjAtQ

    These government people are employed to know what is going on in the real world related to disease and its spread. Why is there no default calculation when ever anything that China states is discounted by?

    This is a part of this mysterious way that our government agency heads professionally conduct themselves, are they required to believe what ever a government representative from China or anywhere else says? Is that their default? And we can also remember how the heads of the FBI and the CIA and the NSA conducted themselves. Is it either sedition or willful ignorance, that is their default setting?

    I have listened to the likes of Gordon Chang on many different radio shows and he spells out very clearly how the Chinese think and operate and what they intend, all in plain English and in no uncertain terms. And Chang has been proven over time to be very much correct on all of this.

    And you can throw your models right out of the window as they appear to be in the instance of this contagion to be just the busy work of a bunch of number crunching high IQ nerds. In time the numbers will be revealed, and then they are going to be argued about as to how the dead were classified and calculated.

    I look forward to that version of this argument in the near future.

  • Edward

    Ian C wrote: “knowing that careful and balanced warnings get usually ignored, boy would I make dramatic predictions

    This is what the modelers and advisors to Trump said that they did. So now we are living under a lockdown that turns out to be worse than the disease and have no exit strategy and no method to determine when to exit (part of the strategy, and why Trump has to set up a new advisory panel). Thus, bogus information has screwed us very, very badly.

    How will we Americans ever be able to trust the medical community again?

    How will we readers of BtB ever be able to trust any models in the future, knowing that modelers are willing to give bogus results in order to elicit action?

    Politicians and political bureaucrats have usually other things on their minds and discussing the subtleties of scenarios and model uncertainty is beyond their attention span

    Instead of anyone paying any attention to all the myriad other problems that we have, we are laser focused only on this one flu (as though it is the only problem we have or as though we can only handle one problem at a time) and how we are ever going to recover from the terrible effects of the overreaction to it that we made. A flu is only one among a herd of problems that have to be dealt with, but bogus modeling and overexcited advice put us into a position that is far worse then the effects of this Wuhan flu. We are no longer dealing with those other problems, allowing them to also come and bite us in the butt just as we are trying to recover from what is turning out to be an ordinary flu, dragged out for months after it should have run its course.

  • Ian C: Bah. The right and proper thing to do when someone demands you do something unethical is to smile, tell them no, and if that isn’t good enough for them, walk away.

    I say this having done this numerous times in my life. I might not be as wealthy as I could have been by being corrupt, but I can sleep at night, knowing I have never willing participated in unethical activity.

    You, not so much, apparently.

  • Ian C.

    Edward,

    If one mixes anything with politics, one gets politics. It happened to climate modeling, it’s happening to epidemiological modeling. Fortunately I’m no longer involved in the modeling business. I’m only telling what I’ve learned during my time there.

    Those other problems aren’t out of view, that’s mostly happening in the layers of politics, media, and the public that are driven by attention and fashion. Of course, we’ll see misallocation of resources and will neglect some other important areas (like with climate protection, which draws resources away from environmental protection), but that’s the usual SNAFU state of politics.

    Bob,

    That’s very laudable. You can take this position if you aim to describe and judge the world. Doesn’t work for me. If you want to change something out there, your hands get inevitably dirty. The amount of dirt grows logarithmically to the significance of the task — many people can’t stand that and find excuses why they stay “honorable” or invent harmless pseudo-problems to waste their time on as long as they don’t have to confront what’s out there. The space industry isn’t so much different. You know that. You’re writing about it several times a week.
    You can protect yourself or your organization to some degree from the dirt thanks to some smart arrangements, but you cannot avoid it completely as you’re not operating in isolation.

    I learned to enjoy dirt, so I chose areas that are deliciously dirty but that also give me plenty of leverage to do good. And I sleep like a baby.

  • Edward

    I’m not sure that I can express just how disturbing this new information is.

    It isn’t just the politicians, bureaucrats, and the press that are the swamp, it is also consists of others that we rely upon to not be part of the swamp.

    It was bad enough that the medical community modelers and experts were willing to let their own priorities take precedence over the priorities of the rest of the country, what with them telling us that it is the virus that will tell us when it is time to end our marshal-law-and-house-arrest policy. Now we discover that modelers in other fields also believe that they know best what the priorities should be. Indeed, some people seem to believe that “If you want to change something out there, your hands get inevitably dirty.

    Trump has made change, but the Democrats were unable to find any of this inevitable dirt. Indeed, they had to generate their own dirt in order to make it appear that he and his team were dirty. It seems that some people are unable to make change without getting their hands dirty, and others are able to make change while remaining clean. The difference is that some people don’t take the short cuts through the muddy swamp, because they are willing to do the extra work to do the right thing.

    We elect officials in order to have them set the priorities, but now we see that the swamp, those who are willing to supersede our elected policymakers, is larger than we believed. Reports to the press also are subject to misrepresentation of actual model results, thus the rest of us are also given bogus information for us to rely upon.

    Our policymakers received bogus information, and we were directed to give up our liberty. We received bogus information and agreed to give it up. Now we are wondering how and when we are going to be granted that liberty back again. Somehow, we Americans agreed to alienate our unalienable rights. (This morning, Sunday, there are a few church congregations willing to defy the virtual martial law, at the risk of heavy harassment by the government.)

    To answer Robert’s question: “Why have our press and politicians repeatedly relied on this quack’s predictions?” Leftists want us to believe in science, because they are now able to manipulate the science (making it bogus science) to tell us what they want us to believe, so that they can rule as they please. Rather than getting answers that are based upon science or reality, we get answers that are pulled out of people’s backsides, and these answers are worth just as much as this implies, as we have seen with this flu cluster-bleep.

    The government, including our once wannabe-conservative president, now tells us how to live our lives, ruling as they please, and the scientists and the press back them up, telling us that it is the virus (meaning that it is the modelers) that will tell us when we can exit lockdown. Even the president, who is supposed to drain the swamp, is proposing borrowing huge amounts of money in order to do things that the government wants done (taking that money away from the loan pool available for the rest of us to borrow as part of recovering from this nightmare).

    The coming Dark Age has arrived.

  • Ian C.

    Edward,

    Before that gets interpreted in unintended ways, let me say what I meant by “dirt.” It covers all the usual deal making (including political deals), taking advantage of situations and creating favorable situations, fighting back against unfair attacks in the same ruthless ways. Then the people out there (with often idealized ideas of how things should be) love to think that this is “dirty.” So when I say “dirty” then please think of “pragmatic lie” and “giving a decision-maker what he wants in exchange for save passage” and not of “doing stuff that kills people.”

    The swamp is a self-serving and corrupt bureaucratic-industrial complex. Then we have those who have to deal with it. Like modelers in the public health domain. They’re not the swamp, they have to play along with the swamp’s rules. Especially when there are no alternatives. (Among other reasons that’s why I left the modeling field.)
    Want to change it? Reduce harmful incentives, establish beneficial incentives, remove the established networks of profiteers. I’m sure that many would prefer to play a cleaner game instead of being forced to participate in an unhealthy relationship. Not everybody like Bob or me can just move out of toxic affairs.

    The modelers’ recommendations aren’t wrong (from what I see). Which of the recommendations are followed and how they’re implemented are decisions that eventually are made by elected officials and their trusted advisors (who aren’t modelers). Most of the unwise or silly actions we see all over the West are due to uncertainty and lack of preparation. The measures are rather similar all over the West, so it’s either a really big conspiracy by the Globalist Swamp (that even a professional paranoid like me is falling for) or we’re perhaps seeing a disease that’s more than just the flu. (Can’t remember a flu season where hospitals were flowing over and mass graves had to be dug out.) That being said, we definitely need to watch out for opportunity-grabbers and their overreach and fight back against that.

  • Cotour

    The quote below may be the most revealing, refreshing and honest thing that has ever been posted on BTB, maybe anywhere. Initially off putting, offensive and disturbing, but real.

    Ian C., I salute you. (Not sarcasm)

    “I learned to enjoy dirt, so I chose areas that are deliciously dirty but that also give me plenty of leverage to do good. And I sleep like a baby.”

    The swamp lives, it has always lived, and will always live, and its better to embrace and accept that it in fact exists then to turn ones nose up and be outraged at it. This is what it is to be human, to be alive and to learn to exist and survive. This is the Political Realm, where all is possible.

    And this is also an example of the interface where abuse of power and models and equations of justification like in Strategy Over Morality live and thrive. And in the end some good may come from it (The survival of someone or some entity), but a lot of bad exists and thrives their, people live and people die their.

    This is where government researchers with lax standards research and release deadly contagions upon the world. This is where doctors and PHD consultants are tasked to believe what they are told to believe, never mind common sense and their fiduciary responsibilities, as long as there exists plausible deniability and a finger can be pointed else where.

    Ian C, I again salute your honesty and I wish you the best of luck with your weighty load, you obviously have broad shoulders.

    This song came on the radio while I was writing this comment, I thought it appropriate: https://youtu.be/2Beda3kFNjo

  • Rick

    Fauci and Birx were touting the 2.2 million number. Then the 100,000-240,000 number and insisting that freedoms be taken away.
    Now that they have modified the models to more reasonable numbers, Fauci claims that they never made decisions based on the models.
    Scum.

  • Max

    Edward has it right, I agree.

    Zimmerman Said;
    “So we come to the fundamental question: Why have our press and politicians repeatedly relied on this quack’s predictions? Could it be that his over-the-top cries that the world is about to end might serve their interests, and not the general public’s? Might it be possible that they are using him to convince the pubic to give them more power? Could it?”

    Ian C. said;
    “Bob,“Endorsing” doesn’t describe it, I’m just telling how the game is played.”

    I say, the “game” has always been about the “ends justify the means”. And here is how it’s “played” (proving Bob’s suspicions right) directly from the horses mouth.

    Objective 2020, forced vaccinations:

    https://www.hhs.gov/sites/default/files/nvpo/national-adult-immunization-plan/naip-path-to-implementation.pdf

    “Priority Area 1: Address Technical, Legal, Administrative, And Practical Barriers To Greater Use Of Electronic Health Records (EHRS) And Immunization Information Systems (IIS) To Collect And Track Adult Immunization Data”

    How?

    Federal government partners can encourage providers and EHR systems that support adult vaccines to build functionality for accurate evaluation of vaccine history and forecast of vaccines due. These systems need to use relevant historical data and/or services from IIS to make these timely decisions. Guidance on these decisions is provided by the Clinical Decision Support for Immunization (CDSi) resources, which provide an implementation-neutral foundation for development and maintenance of clinical decision support engines.2

    The plan is all outlined here do use the federal government for the heavy lifting, and the partners to follow orders. The address how they plan to get around personal and legal rights. Most of this has already been addressed in Obamacare. That’s why it has not been revoked yet by the Republicans dragging their feet, and the Democrats making up one crisis after another. The plan has been in action for sometime, and they’re following through even though it hit some road bumps because of President Trump. Someone else was supposed to be in the office.

    To encourage production of pandemic vaccines, Senators Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-NY) and Pat Roberts (R-Kan.) have introduced legislation, known as the Influenza Vaccine Security Act, that shifts liability from pharmaceutical companies to the federal government for personal injury or death resulting from the manufacture, administration, or use of qualified pandemic influenza technologies.

    http://www.ufrgs.br/imunovet/molecular_immunology/preventionprimaryimmunovaccine.html

    If you can make billions with no liability, would you care about the safety of your product?

    Why I do not trust the pharmaceutical Industry;

    49,000 Americans dead.(compare that to our current crisis)

    https://wjla.com/news/nation-world/chinese-fentanyl-is-fueling-the-us-opioid-crisis-drug-trade-tensions-escalate

    Many people I knew in early 2000 caught the flu after having a flu shot. It wasn’t the flu, but a drug resistant bacterial infection. They were given antibiotics to cure their flu. FDA dropped the ball.

    https://money.cnn.com/2004/10/11/news/midcaps/chiron/

    The tough little Bacteria used in subways for human experimentation. There’s also a problem for space.(#5)

    https://www.idstewardship.com/5-interesting-things-serratia-marcescens/

    Chiron’s curse. The whole story.

    https://www.pharmamanufacturing.com/articles/2004/187/

    Who owns Chiron now? A long history, right up to the present, of corruption and bribes.

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Novartis

    Scroll down to controversies and criticisms.

    None of these people have my trust, and motivation is not the health and well-being of this nation.

    Bacteria from eggs (that come from chickens butts) that is known to cause bladder infections introduced into the bloodstream is one contamination. Viruses and pathogens from Reesie’s monkeys that cause cancer is another.

    The most insidious, beyond even Thimerosal (methylmercury, completely safe as long as you stay out of the sun) is agents that has sterilizing side effects.

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reproductive_immunology

    “The mechanism of the vaccine is injection with cloned ZP cDNA, therefore this vaccine is a DNA based vaccine. This results in the production of antibodies against the ZP, which stop the sperm from binding to the zona pellucida and ultimately from fertilizing the ovum.[7]”

    “Another vaccine in investigation is one against HCG. This immunization would produce antibodies against hCG and TT. Antibodies against hCG would prevent the maintenance of the uterus for a viable pregnancy therefore preventing conception. Another vaccine that is utilized is the peptide β-hCG that is more specific to hCG and a more rapid and effective response”

    This additive will boost the immune system… So much that woman’s body will reject the sperm before conception, making impregnation impossible without a doctors intervention.

    Bill Gates funds the people providing bad information to trump on this outbreak. And this is what he said recently.

    https://vaccineimpact.com/2020/bill-gates-calls-for-vaccine-certificates-as-requirement-for-travel/

    Will we be willing participants in the New Dark age? Trade our freedom… For what security? If they’re cutting back oil production, will they lift the energy restrictions against the orders of the green new deal, now that they have what they’ve always wanted, to provide carbon for the Economy?
    Not if Bill Gates has something to say about it.
    https://www.ted.com/talks/bill_gates_innovating_to_zero/transcript

  • wayne

    Unconditional Surrender: Polio Vaccine Field Trials
    (1956)
    https://youtu.be/G9z2uym00jE
    14:33

  • wayne

    Max–
    to answer one of your many questions/observations–
    (One of) The reasons pharmaceutical company’s don’t appear to be responsive to your individual/personal interests, is because you (collectively) are not the Customer.

    The Federal Government is the Customer.

    And when you sell products that must be approved by un-elected government technocrats, you don’t want to be left holding the bag when the “1-800-Sue Big Pharma” class-action lawsuit commercial starts running.

  • Edward

    Ian C.,
    You wrote: “So when I say “dirty” then please think of ‘pragmatic lie’ and ‘giving a decision-maker what he wants in exchange for save passage’ and not of ‘doing stuff that kills people.’

    You just rationalized the use of the Trump “dossier,” the false accusation against Gen. Micheal Flynn, and other dirty deeds of the leftist swamp. Trump and his team have not fought back “in the same ruthless ways.” Even by your definition, Trump and his team have clean hands, but the modelers and health advisors are dirty.

    They’re not the swamp, they have to play along with the swamp’s rules.

    How does this make them different from the swamp? Everything you wrote makes it sound as though you left because you did not want to be part of the swamp. Please don’t defend their bad behavior and their easy willingness to fudge results and maybe even data.

    Not everybody like Bob or me can just move out of toxic affairs.

    In a free country, there are plenty of other options. You continue to argue that the Dark Age has arrived.

    The modelers’ recommendations aren’t wrong (from what I see).

    Wasting the lives of hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of people is worth saving a couple of tens of thousands of lives? Add in the destroyed lives of those who are losing their businesses and homes, as well as the other unseen collateral damage such as reduced healthcare access for the rest of us (is that going to cost us tens or hundreds of thousands of lives?), and that recommendation is extremely wrong.

    What do you imagine is not wrong about giving up our liberties to government? Protecting these liberties and freedoms was the very reason that we fought the biggest wars that we have fought. Now, because of lies and our eagerness to help the underdog, we no longer have liberty or reasonable healthcare. This makes it the biggest cluster-bleep ever.

    This is the problem when people put themselves in charge of the decisions that the decision-makers make. We hired the real decision-makers for a reason, and we hired others only to give accurate inputs so that our decision-makers can come to the right decision, not come to the decision that these myopic advisors choose.

    We complain about having a ruling class only to discover that there is competition for being in that class. Now we have a new set of overreaching opportunity-grabbers to watch out for and fight back against. They think that they are doing good, but then, so do the leftists and other swamp dwellers, including those who created the “pragmatic” Trump dossier, falsely accused Flynn, and arrested Roger Stone at his house, complete with a SWAT team, frogmen, and CNN as part of the predawn raiding force.

  • Ian C.

    Edward,

    Trump and his team have not fought back “in the same ruthless ways.”

    Fighting back doesn’t imply that one has to use the same (illegal) means one was attacked with. Don’t let them determine how you respond (where they’d have the upper hand), don’t let them set the agenda or follow their narrative, bully back in ways you’re good at and focus on pushing your own agenda. It’s dirty nonetheless. As Trump so often emphasizes, it’s about reciprocity; and if you’re bullied, get even.

    How does this make them different from the swamp?

    The core swamp consists of established profiteers. Most of the poor modelers are servants, their connection to the swamp can end next Tuesday. The swamp thinks in millions or billions of dollar, the modeler hopes to get his next grant and to make perhaps another step on the career ladder.

    Everything you wrote makes it sound as though you left because you did not want to be part of the swamp.

    I left because the community is too small and it’s hard to avoid its rituals and authorities, the art of modeling such complex (social) systems is underdeveloped and hard to apply outside academia/government, the incentives lead to “whining louder” and kowtowing. My specialization is better applied to swarms of planetary rovers or distributed manufacturing systems.

    that recommendation is extremely wrong.

    The general recommendations are increased hygiene, social distancing, protection of risk groups. How that’s implemented is a political decision eventually. There are standard epidemiological responses that under normal circumstances are rather harmless (like closing a kindergarten or reducing traffic to/from affected areas) but that definitely have their impact if applied simultaneously and nationwide. Epidemiologists aren’t economists or lawyers, so their expertise needs to be complemented and their models and recommendations need to be tailored to local situations. They can guide but not determine policy.

    The concern for the health care system’s surge capacity was (and is) valid, considering the uncertainties about the disease and from the experiences in Wuhan, then Northern Italy, then Madrid with overflowing hospitals and all the reports and pictures that came with it. The West lost 6–8 weeks and then had to shut down the economy in an overreaction.

    Now we need to focus on getting back to normal in incremental and reversible ways (a lot will be trial and error) and make sure that those restrictions on liberties and the economy are lifted as good as we can (note that even role models like South Korea and Taiwan have still restrictions in place, so “back to normal” will not be the normal we’re used to for some time).

  • Edward

    Ian C.,
    You wrote: “Fighting back doesn’t imply that one has to use the same (illegal) means one was attacked with. Don’t let them determine how you respond (where they’d have the upper hand), don’t let them set the agenda or follow their narrative, bully back in ways you’re good at and focus on pushing your own agenda. It’s dirty nonetheless. As Trump so often emphasizes, it’s about reciprocity; and if you’re bullied, get even.

    Are you kidding me? Responding or fighting back from an attack is inherently dirty? There are no clean ways to disagree with someone?

    O. M. G.! That means that I now have dirty hands just for this response.

    The core swamp consists of established profiteers.

    So the others who abuse power, such as using the IRS, DoJ, FBI, and other government means, for political means don’t count as part of the swamp? I guess Comey, and the others aren’t swamp material after all. In the meantime, the medical modelers manipulated our leadership in order to get their own way, so I guess that is OK, too — no swamp-like activity in that.

    I left because the community is too small and it’s hard to avoid its rituals and authorities, the art of modeling such complex (social) systems is underdeveloped and hard to apply outside academia/government, the incentives lead to “whining louder” and kowtowing

    I stand corrected. You aren’t so anti-swamp as I had deduced. This explains why you excuse the inexcusable behavior of those who manipulate our government for their own purposes.

    The general recommendations are …

    But the recommendation that we are complaining about is the manipulation of information to drive our nation into lockdown.

    They can guide but not determine policy.

    And yet your original comment was that you would fudge the information, making an exaggeration in order to assure that the decision was heavily weighed in one specific direction. In this case, the economic shutdown of the U.S. This is not guidance but policy determination. It worked, to the detriment of the rest of America.

    The concern may have been valid, but the extent of the problem was not properly weighed and balanced against the damage that would be done. This also includes millions of routine doctor visits that could have headed off growing problems that now may lead to terrible consequences for some or many of those who have not been diagnosed in a timely manner due to the shutdown of so much of our healthcare industry.

    The myopic viewpoint of a small group of people has cost us so very much in terms of medical care, liberty, saving, housing, jobs, livelihoods, and all kinds of other costs and problems that come up from not being able to live life for a month and a half.

    The surgery was a success. The patient died.

  • don eagle

    too much time required to read all the vituperation, suffice it to say that at this point, 26April, all the evidence points to a mortality rate for COVID-19 exactly within the parameters of seasonal flu. You can do the research yourself, Stanford University studies, NY state coronavirus testing etc. all indicate a much higher infection rate, which pulls the death reate down to around .1%. In addition, early reports about how the disease would devastate old and young alike are completely false. The CDC provisional death count, updated daily during the business week, showed almost no mortality at all among those 25 and younger, and almost all of those deaths are in a population with significant pre-existing conditions. comparing the mortality by age cohort for previous years seasonal flu shows an overall similar upward curve for older people, but also contains much higher numbers of dead in the younger age groups. my personal opinion at this point is that democrat politicians and the media have contrived to produce what they hope to be an election buster, and the $40K plus in income that i have lost so far ensures that i will never vote for another liberal again as long as i live. You can pretend that you are “giving” me money to replace lost income all you want, i am not so stupid that i do not understand that eventually i will have to pay for it myself.

  • Andrew_W

    Don eagle, the Santa Clara study was trash, you only need to read the abstract to know that. The NY study points to a fatality rate of 0.8%, the evidence from countries that have diligently used high test rates to track and trace agrees with the NY study. About 8% of the U.S. population gets sick from flu each season, with a range of between 3% and 11%, depending on the season, only 14% of flu cases are asymptomatic. The evidence suggests that the number that get C19 should it go through all communities until herd immunity is reached will be far higher than the number than the number of people that catch flu each year.
    So, without some factor reducing the spread, the math says 8 times as many catch it as the flu, 8 times as many of those people die from it, perhaps you can finish the equation..

  • Ian C.

    Edward,

    Responding or fighting back from an attack is inherently dirty? There are no clean ways to disagree with someone?

    You don’t have to go dirty, but ruling it out completely isn’t smart either.

    This explains why you excuse the inexcusable behavior of those who manipulate our government

    I explained the dilemma. Nothing more.

    But the recommendation that we are complaining about is the manipulation of information to drive our nation into lockdown.

    Modelers only recommend actions to attain specific outcomes. How it’s implemented is a political decision. Of course, you have to take the specific circumstances into account. You cannot do it like, say, South Korea if you’re completely unprepared, have no masks and mask wearing culture, no testing, no contact tracking. That leaves you with lockdowns and in effect a partial shutdown of the economy. It’s a rather novel situation for policymakers, so in the beginning they start with restrictions that might get things wrong or look silly in detail. (Again, I’m just explaining.)

    And yet your original comment was that you would fudge the information, making an exaggeration in order to assure that the decision was heavily weighed in one specific direction.

    You run models with the best (plausible) assumptions at that time, take the more dramatic scenario outcomes, and use them to get the policymakers’ attention. That’s the “whine louder” part.

    Bob,

    On April 25 we’ve had the 20,000th death in the UK. If we’re generous, my statement “20,000 will be reached around April 20” was rather correct.

    Note that this mostly (or even only?) counts hospital deaths. Those in private homes, elderly care etc. aren’t included. I’ve read estimates that this would double the number to 40,000.

  • Andrew_W

    As COVID-19 numbers have come in, Ferguson downgraded his predictions, lowering his UK prediction from 500,000 to only 20,000. At this moment the death toll in the Great Britain is under 9,000. It is very unlikely it will reach Ferguson’s revised number.

    Wrong.

  • don eagle

    just read the abstract, andrew w, so now you have to first tell me what part of it was “Trash”, and second, explain why the basic finding, that COVID-19 is and has been much more widespread in the population worldwide is not important. estimating the true infection rate is critical for establishing the mortality rate: just to make sure you understand, it is called a “denominator”. Santa Clara, New York, Gangelt Germany, Scotland and more, all have been studied, all come up with infection rates above the “confirmed cases”, and by a wide margin. further, reviewing your numbers based in information available online the morning , 27 april, and focusing on New York City, the serological study done there indicates around 21% off the population to have COVID-19 antibodies. the population of NYC presently is just under 19 million, i will use 19 million as a convenient number. as of this morning the deaths fromCOVID-19 in the city are 12,067. When i do the “math” the figure i come up with is .3% mortality. it is know that the mortality rate in new york city is much higher than in other places, california for example. the death rate in new york is 30 times higher, although the metric i am using is the COVID-19 death rate per million (NY 513, CA 17 per million) so, this does not exactly compare the essential features involving the infection rate, etc. so at the end of the day, nationwide, we have a mortality rate as i said before, close to the mortality rate for the seasonal flu.

    i have pasted two cdc pages here, at the very bottom of this post. it is interesting to see a couple of things. first, twice as many people have died this year from pneumonia, in the absence of COVID-19. second, the anomalously low seasonal flu deaths this year. could it be that COVID-19 is really just a particularly bad seasonal flu? (remember, corona viruses are a family of viruses to which season flu and the common cold belong). Last, look at the total deaths form the 2017-2018 flu season: 61,099. compare this to the CDC number to date for COVID-19: 24,555. The page was not updated for friday yet so i concede that the number is now higher than that. Now take a look at the age distributed data for both years, and notice that the assertion that COVID-19 is more dangerous for all age groups is patently false. to make the entry of these data easier, there will be two columns, the first for 2017-2018 season, the second for the COVID-19 outbreak, with the cohorts from the charts (the data are not divided the same way in the two sources) listed to the left
    0-4 years: 115 under 1 year: 0
    5-17 years: 528 1-4 years: 2
    18-49 years: 2,803 5-14 years: 1
    15-24 years: 22
    25-34 years: 194
    35-44 years: 479
    45-54 years: 1316

    the total for 15-54 years for COVID-19, although a larger cohort, is 2,011, smaller than the
    18-49 cohort from 2017-18.

    50-64 years: 6751 55-64 years: 3124
    65+ years: 50,903 65-74 years: 5376
    75-84 years: 6773
    85+ years 7268

    once again, the total for COVID-19 65-85+ is less, at 19,417, than the total from 2017-18.
    it is interesting to printout that t he mortality rate given for the 65+ age cohort (it is in a chart later in the document) is 100%.

    the caveats when comparing these two sets of data: 1. the 2017-18 data are for influenza-associate disease outcomes, so it might be appropriate to include the numbers form column 4 in the provisional death count chart for COVID-19, which is “deaths with pneumonia and COVID-19”. look at them for yourself, the total are still lower, e.g. for the total deaths, 24,555 + 11,070 = 35,625 for COVID-19 to date, compared to 61,099 for 2017-18. Caveat 2. the COVID-19 numbers will certainly grow.

    One more important point that it is being reported that many people are avoiding going to the doctor for serious things other than COVID-19, out of fear of contagion. It is not possible to know how many deaths might result from this behavior. It is also the case that the ability of Americans to afford the necessities is now seriously reduced, and the outcome of that remains to be seen. as for me, i was working in my yard a week ago, and my wife found a tick on me later that night. it had already started to bite. she was able to remove it with alcohol and tweezers, but it left a dime-sized red welt, which looked just as bad the next day, so i called the “Urgent care” folks and described the situation, asking if i could come in. after getting passed around to 3 different people, getting as far up the foodchain as a PA, i was told to just look out for fever and joint pain, and come in then. I i am 67, and have 3 compression fractures in my back from a fall i had doing some tree work on my farm. so i get pain all the time, am i supposed to distinguish the kinds of pain? also, the philosophy seems to be “don’t bother me, get really sick first.” lyme disease is hard to get rid of, just sayin. in addition, i had cataract surgery scheduled for this june, but it has been indefinitely postponed, as being non-essential. so, ok, i can’t work well due to my eyes, but at this point, since i had all my work cancelled through july already, and into the future indefinitely, i guess whether i can work or not is “non-essential”. i have lost more than $20K in income from this already, so i cant pay for the surgery anyway at this point. so, andrew dubya, saying things are “trash”, and blithely saying “wrong”, etc, might indicate a condition known as “knee- jerk”. had you reflexes tested recently? i have a mallet, if you need one.

    https://www.cdc.gov/flu/about/burden/2017-2018.htm#table1
    https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/nvss/vsrr/covid19/index.htm

  • Andrew_W

    “. . so now you have to first tell me what part of it was “Trash”, ”

    We also adjust for test performance characteristics using 3 different estimates: (i) the test manufacturer’s data, (ii) a sample of 37 positive and 30 negative controls tested at Stanford, and (iii) a combination of both. Results The unadjusted prevalence of antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 in Santa Clara County was 1.5%

    ” . .COVID-19 is and has been much more widespread in the population worldwide is not important.”
    I am aware of no international evidence that supports the Santa Clara study results of there being such low symptomatic a fatality rates – not even close to.

    ” . .the population of NYC presently is just under 19 million,” Wrong.

    “Caveat 2. the COVID-19 numbers will certainly grow.” Ya think?

    Your personal experiences regarding you health care providers are irrelevant with regard to the asymptomatic and fatality rates of Covid-19, though they may well influence your opinions on such.

  • don eagle

    so, just exactly how long does “moderation” take?

  • don eagle: Moderation takes as long as it takes me to get to something. I do not see anything by you pending.

  • Cotour

    Here is a prediction for you:

    Tara Reade and her very credible sexual assault allegations gives the Democrat party justification to reject Joe Biden for president.

    Then what? Bernie un suspends? Some other extreme Left leaning Democrat candidate emerges? Amy Klobuchar? Might as well run a card board box.

    You can see them beginning to waver under the extreme pressure of the illogic of it all, it works for those who want a true Leftist to run against Trump. And that is the race that I want, Left / Leftist / Socialism / “adjust” the Constitution V Right / Capitalism / Constitution as intended.

    https://dailycaller.com/2020/04/28/joe-biden-tara-reade-senate-documents-university-delaware/

    That is where the real action is and that is the race that desperately needs to be had once and for all in America and this situation may force it to happen. Joe Biden is a “Progressive” compromise and a straw horse that fraudulently panders to the real American meat and potato rational Democrats in America who are tired of the Leftist lies and culture of dependency insanity of their leadership.

    That I suspect may well be where this is going, and I say thank you crazy, insane Leftist Democrat leadership, in the end you will serve a great service to our country and the world. You yourselves will play a major part and destroy what must be destroyed. Because that is the nature of the beast and what the beast manifests.

    The potential is very promising.

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