The real facts about COVID-19 show the panic about it is absurd


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UPDATE 2: The article censored by Medium has now been posted at zero hedge, and I have changed the link below. As I said, spend some time reading it. The information is substantial, the analysis thoughtful and detailed, and the perspective calm and rational.

UPDATE 1: The article I link to has been blocked by the server. You get this message:

Error
410
This post is under investigation or was found in violation of the Medium Rules.

Or to put it more bluntly, “Medium Rules” are hostile to thoughtful, fact-based analysis. Quite disgusting. If I was the writer I would switch servers in a heartbeat. And if I was another writer on the same server I’d tell them to go to hell as well.

You can read another analysis of the article here, which provides a few more quotes from the article. I will also not be surprised if the article reappears shortly.
—————————————————————–
Original post:

Link here. The article is incredibly detailed about every single aspect of the virus, and finds that it is simply not significantly different from the flu. The numbers outlined also confirm my conclusions from earlier in the week, that the panic over the Wuhan/COVID-19/coronavirus are simply unwarranted. More than anything else, this fact about the virus illustrates this fact:

Dr. Paul Auwaerter, the Clinical Director for the Division of Infectious Diseases at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine echoes [other findings], “If you have a COVID-19 patient in your household, your risk of developing the infection is about 10%….If you were casually exposed to the virus in the workplace (e.g., you were not locked up in conference room for six hours with someone who was infected [like a hospital]), your chance of infection is about 0.5%”

According to Dr. Auwaerter, these transmission rates are very similar to the seasonal flu.

To put it mildly, this epidemic is a nothing burger. Yes, it is killing a small percentage of the population worldwide, but almost all of those are old and already sick. Yes, it is spreading fast, but the spread is comparable to the flu and is thus not special or unusual.

And yes, actions to slow the spread will be helpful to both the scientists trying to come up with treatments and cures and the healthcare system that has to treat this new influx of patients, but the autocratic restrictions being imposed by state and city governments in the U.S. are almost all counter-productive. As the article notes:

Local governments and politicians are inflicting massive harm and disruption with little evidence to support their draconian edicts. Every local government is in a mimetic race to one-up each other in authoritarian city ordinances to show us who has more “abundance of caution”. Politicians are competing, not on more evidence or more COVID-19 cures but more caution. As unemployment rises and families feel unbearably burdened already, they feel pressure to “fix” the situation they created with even more radical and “creative” policy solutions. This only creates more problems and an even larger snowball effect. The first place to start is to stop killing the patient and focus on what works.

Start with basic hygiene: The most effective means to reduce spread is basic hygiene. Most American’s don’t wash their hands enough and aren’t aware of how to actually wash your hands. Masks aren’t particularly effective if you touch your eyes with infected hands. Ask businesses and public places to freely distribute disinfectant wipes and hand sanitizer to the customers and patrons. If you get sick or feel sick, stay home. These are basic rules for preventing illness that doesn’t require trillions of dollars.

Meanwhile, our federal government is about to pass a one to two trillion dollar stimulus bill that will further bankrupt the government, aimed at distributing money, not for developing and making available the necessary drugs to combat the virus, but to their buddies and to Americans as a pay-off for their terrible policies that are destroying jobs, incomes, lives, and the economy.

Read it all. Take your time doing it, as the amount of information is substantial. The bottom line, however, is that if you inform yourself properly about COVID-19, you will realize that we are panicking for no reason. And with our panic we are allowing corrupt politicians to destroy our freedoms and rights while they increase their power over us.

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67 comments

  • Cotour

    This reminds me of the “Vaxing” discussion and how we do not know what we don’t know or think that we don’t know or that we do know. And this creates confusion and fear especially in a parent who would look to do what was best for their child.

    The “facts” about this thing are flying. Here we see a I think professional nurse who has become a bit of a Youtube sensation and he is putting forth that this is going to be devastating, possibly half of the worlds 7.7 billion people will contract it and I think he is promoting that a fairly high percentage of them will die as a result, especially in third world countries.

    https://youtu.be/o2FkuQZTYO4

    So it remains to be seen just how devastating this Covid 19 will shake out to be.

    And the suspicious and curious nature that I have grown just finds it so curious that such a devastating and world shaking virus would come to exist and find itself expressing itself in the populations of the world at such an opportune time both politically and economically. Its just such an effective way to reorganize things that its very hard not to watch in awe and scratch ones head.

    ———

    My response to Libertarian I was having a conversation with today, the subject: Our freedom as it is, and what may come as a reaction to this virus contagion:

    We are all as Americans “free”, we are not FREE.

    And I entirely understand your point about what the Constitution says literally. But we by necessity live within the parameters that the Constitution and by extension law formulates. If this was not so then chaos would reign. No human being except maybe someone who lives entirely apart from civilization on an isolated mountain in the middle of nowhere is FREE. And just how free is that?

    We are “free” within those Constitutionally formulated parameters. And that is why the pure Libertarian view is really not a practical or manageable argument.

    So, under a special situation where the president himself proclaims a national emergency certain laws are allowed to emerge for the “Greater good” and security of the whole and the individual becomes a lesser concern.

    And this is where we all must carefully pay attention for this is where more and more of our “freedom” can and will be stolen “For the good of the whole”. (The two conversations)

    And so we must ask: Is this situation, 8 months out from a critical presidential election, a bit too convenient? Stay tuned for that answer, trust none of them. This world wide financial destruction may benefit the Globalists or it may serve to destroy them and their goals. Like I said, stay tuned. (What are a couple of the Globalist must haves? Population reduction and sweeping centralized governmental control of all governments. What better way to accomplish that reduced population and control than by a viral contagion that kills masses and economically bankrupting all of them?)

    When its big, its usually S.O.M. being employed IMO.

    And like Rahm Emanuel says: “Never let a serious crisis go to waste”. I hear you Rahm.

  • Michael

    Money Quote: “Over three-fourths of Americans are scared not of COVID-19 but what it is doing to our society.”

    I find that if one stays in and does nothing but listen to the latest new flashes a feeling of despair quickly follows. Get out in the sunshine and amongst people – it really buoys you up.

  • Michael: Diane and I went hiking today with friends. The trails were packed with people doing the same. With many I joked as I went by, “Oh no! Other people! We’re all gonna die! Don’t breath on me!”

    They all laughed. Very clearly they saw this thing as being as crazy as I.

  • commodude

    And the article has been blocked for rules violations.

    Facts against hysteria, hysteria will win every time.

  • Andrew_W

    I’ve long been of the opinion that you are outstanding at uncovering the ‘facts’ that you want to find. I’ve looked at this using about every medical source that I can find. My conclusions are the opposite of yours, do nothing this year to limit the spread and the death rate in the US over the next year at the very least quadruples.

  • commodude

    Andrew, which fact sources are you using? Inquiring minds want to know…..

  • John

    Looks like the thought police got to the article. Censorship in this day and age means “It goes against our narrative and we don’t have an argument against it”.

    Now they’re going to blow the bridges to major cities.

    Satire? Can you even tell anymore?

  • Andrew_W

    https://medium.com/@tomaspueyo/coronavirus-the-hammer-and-the-dance-be9337092b56

    https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/

    In the second link you can see and compare the death rates and the rate of spread of the disease between the East Asian countries like Japan, Singapore, Taiwan and Hong Kong which have taken it seriously, and so been proactive in fighting it, and Western countries where governments have been reactive, not moving to fight the progress of the spread until after they’ve become alarmed at the strain on health systems of its spread, acting not on what will happen, given the experience of other countries, but rather what has happened in their own.
    Especially helpful is to go to the links for the top countries and switch to the logarithmic scale. The graph for the US should make doubting Americans think again.

  • Andrew_W

    Comment in moderation Mr. Zimmerman. Thanks.

  • commodude

    Andrew, the timeline given for the US starts far earlier than the “Hammer and the Dance” article suggests. It’s an excellent example of twisting numbers (NOT data) to force them into your worldview.

  • commodude: Note also that the “Hammer and the Dance” article that Andrew_W linked to has not been blocked, even though it is on the same server, Medium, as the article I linked to that Medium quickly censored.

    In this context, I found the timing of Andrew’s comment quite amusing.

  • commodude

    Robert,

    There are multiple holes in the article, some large enough to drive the proverbial truck through. This has been so sensationalized by the media that it has become impossible to combat the hysteria with logic.

    I was in a presentation given by for employees, done by a clinician trying to defuse the hysteria. A young woman actually got combative with the presenting clinician. She insisted that the tripe spread on social media is fact, and what the clinician was presenting was propaganda.

    We’re left to just pick up the pieces, and hope that society doesn’t accept this dictatorial bent as normal.

  • commodude

    As an aside, in defiance of orders from our betters in the capital, we had an excellent turnout at the chicken BBQ , which turned into a charity event for those who are facing layoffs from this utter stupidity.

  • Lee S

    You can quote statistics all day long…. You can cherry pick which statistics you like, but the facts are…. Italy, 627 deaths in one day, Spain, 235 deaths in one day… From Corona…. The army have been helping out in Italy to move the bodies as funeral services are overwhelmed.
    It’s sensible not to panic, but it’s also important to not underestimate the potential danger here.
    Posting a link to a paper written by someone with no medical knowledge, and who has no doubt cherry picked his own information ( I read the synopsis ) does nothing to help.
    I also get annoyed by the parroting of “but almost all of those are old and already sick”, like the old and sick don’t really matter…. It’s not just here, it’s everywhere… The old and sick matter just as much as the young and healthy, perhaps not economically, but certainly morally.

  • Andrew_W

    At one stage, in comments on Quillette, – when China was flattening the curve, and East Asian countries were getting control, I said that I thought “the number of infected people probably wouldn’t get much past 50,000”. I was wrong.

    When my information changes I alter my conclusions, what do you do ,sir?
    -Keynes.

    The timelines of these assessments usually start when there’s evidence of community transmission, having some people come home with the disease is only relevant to a pandemic from when they pass the pathogen on to others in the community.

  • commodude

    Lee,

    Those deaths mirror the deaths from the flu or any other viral disease that hits populations with underlying medical issues. Italy would, statistically speaking, have roughly 650 deaths per day from all causes. That would indicate double the normal death rate, however, when you look at the population spread and who is getting killed by the virus, it’s not surprising. Italy, like much of Europe, is getting VERY old statistically.

    The hysteria is strictly media hype, the numbers don’t live up to the fear.

  • commodude

    As to China’s numbers, I do not believe the numbers out of that country. They lie about everything else, they and WHO lied about transmission rates, why would they tell the truth about the number of cases?

  • Lee S

    @commodude, it ain’t over till it’s over.
    If this turns out to be a storm in a teacup, I will meekly apologize for being wrong… But it ain’t over yet.

  • Lee S

    And boots on the ground… I’m pretty sure Corona has come and gone thru this Englishman… I was coughing and short of breath for a few days there…. But unfortunately for you guys… I’m feeling fit and well again… I guess I was not destined to be one of the 0.5-10% …. You are going to have to put up with me a little while longer ;-)

  • Chris

    Lee – be well.
    It is never unfortunate for us that you or anyone else is well – and are able to debate.

  • Ray Van Dune

    There has been a hidden “epidemic” of corruption among top level politicians, bureaucrats and oligarchs in the US for a decade or more. The election of a financially independent (thus unbribeable) outsider as President has put billions of dollars in criminally-attained wealth, and the freedom of the criminals, at grave risk. The hoaxes they have perpetrated so far have failed to dislodge this interloper, but a new viral epidemic has provided the golden opportunity to oust him. by destroying his signature achievement, a vibrant US economy, unique in the world at present.

    That’s what’s really going on.

  • wayne

    Michael–
    Oh yeah. This is precisely why I cancelled my satellite dish 16 months ago.
    Personally–I only watch the daily-briefing from the White House feed. Pretty much everything else is Fake News, Inc.

    commodude–
    Absolutely.
    The Chinese communist ruling elite are professional liars. (As are the Fake News and a large portion of our elderly, demented, so-called, “leaders.”

    “There are two reasons things fall apart”
    Jordan Peterson
    https://youtu.be/d4LpaKnjYz0
    15:48

  • m d mill

    All people under 50 (66 % of the population) , and not living with an older person, should go out into public domain robustly (keep schools open), get infected perhaps, get the covid flu perhaps, endure the flu like symptoms if any, and then become immune to the virus and future infection. The virus will then have few bodies in which to multiply and the “pandemic” will then rapidly die away. Then the elderly can then again come out (using common sense precautions) and be relatively safe. By that time vaccines and antivirals may be available.
    The total “shutdown” response of fearful politicians who need to act like they are active virtuous leaders is a cure far worse than the disease. The loss of jobs for tens of millions , inability to pay rent and other bills, hoarding of store goods, printing of money, and further debt, etc, is a disaster that is caused by foolish men, not a virus.

    Of course elderly people should stay away from possibly infected people/groups, wear masks around visitors, stay at home, have groceries delivered, etc just to be safer during that time…BUT THE EPIDEMIC WOULD BE OVER IN ABOUT A MONTH…IMO.
    Do not respond that the “death of any infirmed elderly” is unacceptable…we accept 30,000 influenza deaths per year without shutting down the economy and much needed job income and national productivity (eg food, energy, clothing, housing.) We are ruining ourselves for no reason…It is amazing to see what has happened in only a month.

  • commodude

    The shutdown by government isn’t a fear response, it’s a power grab, nothing less, one that we need to trim going forward so it doesn’t happen again.

    The deep state Dr. was unconcerned about H1N1, which killed thousands:

    https://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2020/03/what_did_dr_fauci_have_to_say_in_2009_about_the_deadly_h1n1_pandemic.html

    Now that a threat to the bureaucracy is President, it’s a different game.

  • wayne

    commodude–

    Good stuff.

  • Cotour

    “In the face of trying times we put our heads down and do what must be done, and we take care of business” JGL

    Have faith that in time this too will pass and America and its beautiful Constitution will persevere.

  • Cotour

    Dr. John Campbell:

    Reviewing some data on the survivability on surfaces of this particular or similar viruses: https://youtu.be/JNQUHc8wbRc

  • Cotour

    More, Dr. John Campbell explaining basic virus / bacteriological reproduction: https://youtu.be/dDL6XZ8DDbs

  • John

    Can’t recall if I have posted on this forum on any other topic. Hopefully that won’t discourage other people from trying to answer some of the questions I have regarding the original article and other data on COVID-19.

    Does anything think it worthwhile to send an email to Medium criticizing their decision to censor the article?

    Should Zero Hedge be asked why they chose to begin their post of Mr Ginn’s article with a link to a series of tweets that attempt to refute his findings. I only scanned the tweets, from what I read there seemed to be more snark, ad hominem attacks and very little links to sources or studies?

    Has anyone seen or can point to a source on the number of COVID 19 test administered and what the results are, i.e. number of positive tests, number of negative tests?

    I found a source that is ten years old on the number of ventilators available in the USA., 160,000 with another 10,000 in reserve. Does anyone know of the current number of ventilators?

    Do we know number of people admitted to hospitals with COVID 19 and how many are on ventilators?

    Are there any demographics available on those who have died from COVID 19?

    Thanks to all for an interested discussion thread.

  • Cotour

    Here is a site that may answer some of you questions, and you can go to other countries to see their stats:

    https://epidemic-stats.com/coronavirus/usa

  • mkent

    Robert: It is maddening that after the events of the last week you any so many other people still feel this is just another flu. In that timeframe the worldwide fatality rate has gone *UP* — nearly doubled — to 13%, not down as you predicted. The current data:

    14,611 deaths / 112,247 closed cases = 13.0% fatality rate

    You are quoting sites telling you what the data *should* say, not what they *do* say. This is no different than the global warming people who adjust the data to fit their models instead of adjusting their models to fit the data. You’re doing the same thing here. We can all hope that as new treatments come online, that fatality rate will decrease, but that’s not the truth on the ground right now.

  • commodude

    mkent, you’re cherry picking numbers.

    That dog won’t hunt.

  • mkent: I am sorry you are “maddened.” You should calm down (and carry on). It might also help you find some real numbers, rather than the false numbers you quote. From COVID19Info.live, as of March 22, 2020:

    14,625 deaths / 334,470 confirmed infections = 4.4%.

    Slightly different than your numbers eh? And that 4.4% number is certainly high because the number of confirmed infections has not yet caught up with the number of deaths, especially because we are now seeing the virus appear in many places at once. Lots more confirmed infections with lots more as yet detected. It will take about two weeks for things to catch up.

    Moreover, that 4.4% number is almost all people over 60, with the majority of those over 70 with other health issues, just like the flu. Isn’t that interesting?

  • Andrew_W

    mkent’s numbers are dead/recovered.

    Your numbers are dead/total diagnosed as infected.

    Both of those are the wrong way to get a useful idea of what the current fatality rate actually is.

  • Andrew_W

    mkent’s numbers are dead/recovered.
    Sorry dead/closed cases.
    With the dead/diagnosed you need to allow for the average delay between being diagnosed as infected and dying, which has been claimed to be 10 days or more, so should be:
    Dead/ number diagnosed as infected ~10 days ago =

    Then of course you need to ask how many undiagnosed, 3x, 6x the number diagnosed? In RoK I can believe that they’ve correctly located the majority of those infected, which is why they’ve got relatively few new cases and part of the reason for a lower fatality rate, in the US . . .?

  • Andrew_W: And the final answer in South Korea? A 0.9% death rate. Nor has South Korea been the only place to indicate this lower death rate (a death rate by the way before any treatments had been found).. All evidence continues to point downward, to an overall pattern close to the flu.

  • John

    Cotour, thank you for the (https://epidemic-stats.com/coronavirus/usa) I’ve been visiting the Johns Hopkins site, find the information on the site you suggested easier to digest.

    I think at the end of the coming week it will be interesting to see the directions of the tread lines.

  • Cotour

    A little bit more.

    I found this: Professor Francis Boyle on YouTube https://youtu.be/3DAI3c9wE0Q

    He has some interesting opinions on the virus and its potentials and whether they are natural or manipulated. I sent this note out to a friend who is involved in advanced therapeutics to see if he had the expertise or understanding of the subject to comment on it. We wait.

    R,

    The Chinese have a saying: “May you live in interesting times”, and we certainly do.

    I have been looking into this virus situation and was reading this piece in Antiviral Research about the Covid 19 virus and was wondering if you had an opinion on what exactly they mean when they talk about “Priming” and “Gain of function” in the “efficient spreading in the human population”?

    Does this indicate that this is just a proclivity of this virus, or does it mean that it has been manipulated to do so?

    All the best.

    https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0166354220300528

    ” This furin-like cleavage site, is supposed to be cleaved during virus egress (Mille and Whittaker, 2014) for S-protein “priming” and may provide a gain-of-function to the 2019-nCoV for efficient spreading in the human population compared to other lineage b betacoronaviruses. This possibly illustrates a convergent evolution pathway between unrelated CoVs. Interestingly, if this site is not processed, the S-protein is expected to be cleaved at site 2 during virus endocytosis, as observed for the SARS-CoV.”

  • Andrew_W

    Mr. Zimmerman, RoK has gotten on top of it without crippling their economic or their health care system, they’ve done that by taking the threat seriously and being proactive. If they had not taken that course of action they would almost certainly have ended up with the flood of critical care cases that is overwhelming several European countries, a tsunami that has multiplied the fatality rate. 0.9% when a countries health care isn’t stretched beyond design DOES turn into a far higher fatality rate when it is.

  • Andrew_W: I wish you would read what I write. I have noted South Korea’s aggressive effort already repeatedly. You aren’t telling me anything I don’t already know.

    What they did not do however is lock down their society, in any way at all. No panic, just a careful rational response, which is all I have been asking for and not getting. See COVID-19: the unwarranted panic, especially this quote:

    “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.

  • wayne

    “Coronavirus Is the Health of the State”
    Reason TV
    March 16, 2020
    https://youtu.be/2bsjbmpvI2g
    2:41

  • wayne

    here we go….

    “Don’t Expect Millions To Die From Coronavirus”
    Richard Epstein / Nick Gillespie
    Reason TV
    March 18, 2020
    https://youtu.be/bCnT2owc1Z8
    38:10

    “The NYU Law professor thinks we’re in for a mess of bad epidemiology, ineffective stimulus, and misguided quarantines…”

  • Andrew_W

    But you consider this: “To put it mildly, this epidemic is a nothing burger” accurate and reasonable?

    Perhaps you and I see the phrase “nothing burger” differently, to me that means something like “not big enough to take serious action to avoid.”

    And you more or less agree with my comment? “. . . do nothing this year to limit the spread and the death rate in the US over the next year at the very least quadruples.”

    If 60% of American’s were to get infected due to a BAU approach, with a rapid spread US healthcare would be overloaded and mortality rates could easily get well above 1% – up to 5% of cases with ICU healthcare is completely overloaded. That gets you to this virus quadrupling US death rates – if that all happens inside 1 year.

    Maybe we were just talking past each other.
    You would recommend the attitude and measures RoK has taken: Take the threat seriously, social distancing, wear masks, avoid crowds, wash hands hourly, avoid physical contact, test, test, test?

  • mkent

    It might also help you find some real numbers, rather than the false numbers you quote. From COVID19Info.live, as of March 22, 2020…

    Your site gives nearly identical numbers as mine (as of this writing):

    14,657 deaths / 113,636 closed cases = 12.9% fatality rate

    Sure, they’re a few numbers off, because we’re looking at live update sites at different times, but that doesn’t make my numbers false. The ratios only differ from each other by a tenth of a percentage point.

    14,625 deaths / 334,470 confirmed infections = 4.4%.

    Your calculation is gibberish. You are including ~221,000 active cases in your denominator. By doing so you are assuming that all of them — every last one of them — are going to recover. But the events of the last two months show that is a bad assumption. Many of them are going to die.

    But even with your bad assumption your own calculation shows a fatality rate *220 times* that of the 2009 swine flu epidemic in the United States. COVID-19 is not the flu.

    And the final answer in South Korea? A 0.9% death rate.

    Again, no. The fatality rate in South Korea is 111 deaths / 3,277 closed cases = 3.4%. That’s better than the worldwide average, but still 170 times that of the swine flu.

    Then of course you need to ask how many undiagnosed, 3x, 6x the number diagnosed? In RoK I can believe that they’ve correctly located the majority of those infected, which is why they’ve got relatively few new cases and part of the reason for a lower fatality rate, in the US . . .?

    The RoK has probably identified most of their infected. The United States almost certainly has not due to the way the CDC botched testing by demanding under force of regulation to be in control of it all. However, in places with adequate testing, don’t expect to find a lot of undiagnosed cases. The Chinese did an antibody test on 320,000 people in Guangdong province and did not find many, not enough to change their CFR statistics anyway.

  • Andrew_W

    mkent.
    Working on a 14 day lag between diagnosis and death (a good bet that RoK are picking them up very early) the figure I’d expect for mortality to be more accurate would be deaths 111/7313(total # diagnosed up to 14 days ago) = 1.5%.

    Your methodology would require there not to be a slow recovery time, we know there is, people might die 10 – 14 days after diagnosis but average recovery times are showing up as being much, much longer, depressing the number of recovered below the number of deaths, same mistake as Mr. Zimmerman, but from the opposite direction.

  • John C.

    You know, one would think that those on the political left, who tend to have a Malthusian bent would be embracing this virus! In their opinion humans are also a virus, destroying the earth. Now is their chance to get rid of a whole lot of humans and wouldn’t that be great for the environment! This is far more efficient than abortion, or some other type of population control method. “We need to stop having so many kids”, they say. Well, well, well, I guess when it all comes down to it they are “all hat and no cattle”. Look at the most left wing states and you see the most restrictive measures in order to protect public health. Anything is on the table to save lives! So a couple questions, do they love power more than their ultimate goal of saving the earth? Do they love drama and hysteria more than Mother Earth? Why do they want to tamper with nature? Let this virus run it’s course! My guess is that they haven’t thought any of this through and are just caught up in the hysteria themselves. You guys are missing a great opportunity. Do nothing and let’s see what happens!!

  • Andrew_W: Your point is well taken. My statement was very truly an overstatement, mostly a reaction to the wild over-reaction I see to this virus.

    Yes, I think smart and focused action should be taken, as South Korea has, but this is also almost exactly what is done yearly with the flu, except for the extra testing because COVID-19 is a new disease and we need to know more about it. I will say that some of the social distancing people are doing at this point (including shutting down sports and entertainment events) is an over reaction as well, based on what we know now.

  • Ian C.

    The Chinese are watching the foolish Europeans and Americans, amazed that they behave as predicted.

  • Chris

    Ian C. I agree and disagree with you on our adversaries observing us.

    One one hand they (China, Russia, NK and Iran -possibly Venezuela) see us argue back and forth federal to state to municipality and then all with the press. They see Pres Trump telling the states and munis to handle it – they see this as weakness, it is strength. The big boys China and Russia (and the wanna be Iran) see how our economy has been hit hard and how our society is somewhat churning. We are certainly not a Dec 8, 1941 America. With this churning the big boys must be wondering what an infrastructure cyber attack would yield. Would the NATO article 5 be invoked on a Suwalki gap incursion or a total Hong Kong clampdown or Taiwan play? Will the American and European populace tell their governments to stay home and protect us?
    On the other hand, I think that at least Xi is shaking. He has seen Pres Trump take decisive action to close borders without the “normal” fear of the xenophobic or racist charge. He has not tried to take full charge of the country – instead actually let the systems in place work. He has worked to use his power judiciously. – how odd for the Xis and Putins and Kims to see this. China, though reported as coming back “on-line” in production is seeing a ticked off customer in the US. We are not going to continue to play the “buy it cheap at all costs game” anymore. Quietly the US has kept is military up and running (maybe somewhat isolated from the Chinese virus?)
    Trump did not need to quell revolts in the populace.

    So yes I think Xi is seeing us behave as predicted – and he filled his pants when he saw it.

  • Jason Hillyer

    Mr. Zimmerman, instead of focusing only on countries that have done well to mitigate the spread of this virus, we should instead look at ALL countries.

    Italy locked down the entire country, yet their death rate is at 9.26%, roughly 73x deadlier than the seasonal flu.

    Thoughts?

  • wayne

    “Stop The Coronavirus Corporate Coup: Here Is A List Of Everyone Demanding A Bail Out”
    Courtesy of BIG newsletter author and monopoly researcher, Matt Stoller
    Via Zero Hedge 3-22-2020
    https://www.zerohedge.com/markets/stop-coronavirus-corporate-coup-here-list-everyone-demanding-bail-out

    one little tidbit for us space-nerds:

    3. Elon Musk and Jeff Bezo want “$5 billion in grants or loans to keep commercial space company employees on the job and launch facilities open.” They also want the IRS to give them cash for R&D tax credits.
    (at) Mathew Stoller

  • Cotour

    Musk and Bezos can ask for what ever they want.

    At this point it might be a good idea, seeing how much they both have invested, and the financial pressures that are now on the government, to deny them “free” money and see just how committed to their projects they are. After all they are among the wealthiest people on the planet. This can become one big money grab if it is allowed to get out of control.

    Unemployment, maybe some lay offs, these are very creative and well heeled people. Just how committed are they?

    This entire unfolding contagion event, whether it is by nature or agenda / nurture, presents certain opportunities to those who would seek to dominate. You can bet that Soros is at some level rubbing his hands together and smiling as he plods along on his Globalist agenda.

    One other thing, politics is dead for the moment. But the media pushes on with their anti Trump / anti America agenda. How Joe Biden gains any traction now is unknown to me, he is sitting at home sucking his thumb. Which is exactly where he belongs. And you may see Andrew Cuomo emerge as the Democrat candidate, if not in 2020 certainly in 2024.

    Cuomo has held several very competent news conferences where he (Unlike DeBlasio who is a chicken running around without a head) presents as a competent leader. And my problem with Cuomo is that I understand him to be a Liberal Democrat and purely a political animal, and he panders to the Leftist “Progressive” among us. But that’s politics.

  • Jason Hillyer: Italy’s lockdown clearly failed. That country’s problems also stem from cultural and governmental issues. It has the oldest population in Europe. It likes to put a lot of its elderly in nursing homes where they are closely confined together. And it has a socialized medical system, run by the government that was immediately over-stressed and unable to adjust to unexpected circumstances (as is typical with governments).

    I predict however that the death rate will drop once again as time passes and more data comes in on the total rate of infection. It will not end up at this high number.

  • wayne

    This just in–
    Our Governor (Michigan) has [lost her darn mind, to be polite] just ordered some sort of State wide “lockdown.”

  • sippin_bourbon

    Question for the group.

    Does anyone really believe the numbers coming out of China?

    Epoch Times (which is run out of Hong Kong, and has a bias of its own, so take with a grain of salt) is reporting that Chinese cell phones services are down about 21 Million subscribers.
    That in a society that uses their phones and tech as much as we do.

    Either they are locked out by a controlling government that is trying to restrict the flow of info, or they are no longer capable of having a phone (wrong side of the grass?) or some combination in between.

    I struggle to consider any other reasons.

    As I said, that source has its own biases, namely, they are “liberal” compared to the communist government. But even if the reported number is inflated, it is still way bigger than what the Chinese government reports for infections.

  • sippin_bourbon: China’s government will certainly try to fudge the numbers, if it can. The last three words however are operative. From my experience researching the space program of the Soviet Union, which always tried to control information leaving its country (and in the end generally failed, especially on events involving a lot of people), I do not think China can really suppress truly terrible numbers. Too many people involved, too much international involvement by researchers.

    At this point in this story China’s numbers are probably somewhat close to reality. That they seem to match what other countries are measuring further confirms this conclusion.

  • Andrew

    Thank you for reprinting this piece of sanity. Thank Gawd someone else is paying attention to this FARCE.

  • Jason Hillyer

    In essence, Mr. Zimmerman, what you’re saying is that this virus is a nothing burger… unless you have a socialized medicine program (which can be overwhelmed VERY quickly), or an relatively old population. I understand this logic and hopefully the situation ends up better for the US as well as the other countries who do not share Italy’s culture and demographics.

    However, I’m beginning to think you are conceding to my opinion, which is that this virus is indeed, different, and worse than the seasonal flu. I think your main issue is with HOW much worse it is, and with the effectiveness of the US’s methods to slow the spread. Do I have the right idea?

  • Jason Hillyer: No, I still think this disease is going to end up not much different than the flu. I’ve seen nothing so far to make me think otherwise. And if I do, I will say so.

    Most of the actions taken by our government so far have been over-reactions and poorly focused. Rather than aim at the virus, they are aiming their actions at our freedoms and our rights. I will have more to say about this in an essay this afternoon.

  • sippin_bourbon

    I believe it to be significantly different than flu.
    Most people already have some general immunity for most flu strains.
    Not the case for COVID-19.

    The incubation phase when still contagious is significantly longer.
    Influenza can live on surfaces for 24 to 48 hours, COVID-19 can last 36 to 72 (last I heard), increasing chance of spreading again.

    There are indications of lasting impacts, since it is mostly a respiratory disease, where severe cases seem to leave the person with diminished lung capacity after the fact. Permanent or not appears to still be an open question.

    In short, there are a lot of people that want to compare this to a seasonal flu outbreak, but I think its a poor comparison. That is not to say that I agree with the MSM pushing the panic.

  • Andrew_W

    In Italy the lock-down of the North of the country failed because the disease had already spread from there, and at the announcement of the lock-down tens or even hundreds of thousands of Italians fled South, carrying and so spreading the disease. Since they’ve locked-down the rest of the country the rate of spread has slowed, over the next few days the number of daily deaths will decline, and they’ll start following the Chinese curve downwards.

    In the US the rate of new infections has continued as a geometric progression, a straight line on a logarithmic graph. The US will undoubtedly get to number one (where Americans like to be ;-) ). It’ll turn down with the lock-downs being imposed, it would also have eventually turned down as people saw what was happening and acted in their own interested, voluntarily practicing social isolation etc. But by then your healthcare system would have been swamped with a higher death rate as a result, and because young people see themselves as invulnerable (with good reason in this case) much of your community would be slow to switch – because – not in their self interest.

    In New Zealand the government has put the country into lock-down for 4 weeks as of tomorrow, Mr. Zimmerman would see that as government taking away our freedoms and rights, but the government is following the people on this one, most of us, arguably especially the right, would have preferred far more aggressive measures to stop the arrival of the disease in the country most see the government as not being decisive enough in the first place.

    We still have a low rate of infection, 21/million, with only 2 cases of community transmission detected, and there’s a good bet this lock-down will eliminate the disease here. If so, we’ll be able to return to near normalcy apart from international travel, Kiwi’s will just have to go see their own country for a change.

    Libertarians recognize that governments have an obligation to act to defend their country from a hostile intrusion and patriots are willing to act to defend their country.

  • sippin_bourbon wrote: “The incubation phase when still contagious is significantly longer.”

    Actually, the paper that posited this has been rejected by a number of other studies (see the article at the link). Right now it appears the incubation period is very short, and that you get symptoms very soon after getting infected.

    Once again, the lasting impacts (mostly among older patients with other prior health problems) are not dissimilar to the same lasting impacts you see with the flu.

    The issue of immunity you mention is a valid concern, but all evidence so far indicates that though more people can get this disease, the spread is not as widespread as expected for such a situation. That most people on the Diamond Princess (83%) did not become infected points to this.

    This isn’t the flu, but its consequences appear increasingly similar.

  • Phill O

    This virus is extremely dangerous: not to health but the economic consequences of fear mongering by the media in order to get viewers! And also the dems whose biggest desire is to get at Trump.

    By the way, my opinion of Trump has not changed since before his election: He is a jerk, but one who will get what the average citizen needs!

  • Cotour

    Vitamin D3 helps in reducing both bacteriological and viral infections.

    Dr. John Campbell: https://youtu.be/W5yVGmfivAk

  • Cotour

    Here is another little lecture on vitamin D3 and the upper respiratory tract and its anti viral effects, very informative.

    https://youtu.be/fmDng_uMCnY

  • John

    Here’s an article about Germany’s low death rate. The numbers on this disease have been all over the place.

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8141929/Why-Germanys-coronavirus-death-rate-low.html

  • Raymond A Brooks

    Perspicacity

    We are mere guests in the world of bacteria and viruses. They own the planet. We cannot survive without bacteria – the good ones in our gut for example.
    The nasty ones kill us as fast as Liberty Valance.

    Per Wikipedia:

    “Viruses are found in almost every ecosystem on Earth and are the most numerous type of biological entity.

    Viruses are found wherever there is life and have probably existed since living cells first evolved.

    Virus self-assembly within host cells has implications for the study of the origin of life, as it lends further credence to the hypothesis that life could have started as self-assembling organic molecules.”

    Those three sentences show how centrally important viruses are to life. In fact, life probably could not have evolved without viruses. It is almost like saying life could not exist without DNA.

    You would have a very difficult time convincing me that this is the first time COVID-19 has made a world tour. (Of course, “the world” 2,000 years ago was pretty much the Mediterranean; 5 to 10 thousand years ago it was Mesopotamia). Statistically it is extremely unlikely that this is the first time it appeared – unless it was created in a lab but the consensus is it was in dead and live animals in the Wuhan market.

    If a new virus gets invented by Mother Nature every ten years then in the last billion years, 100 million viruses have been designed by Nature. And life began much longer than one billion years ago – likely 3.9 billion years ago. This is not the first rodeo for COVID-19. The young feel like crap and recover…. or feel nothing at all and recover not ever knowing they were sick.

    Per Wikipedia:
    “An enormous variety of genomic structures can be seen among viral species; as a group, they contain more structural genomic diversity than plants, animals, archaea, or bacteria. There are millions of different types of viruses,[4] although only about 5,000 types have been described in detail.[3] As of September 2015, the NCBI Virus genome database has more than 75,000 complete genome sequences,[91] but there are doubtlessly many more to be discovered.”

    Most people do not die from getting a cold. Why? Those are coronaviruses too. Some cold viruses are damn nasty. Rhinovirus and pneumo-viruses. Some old people do die from a bad cold if it goes into pneumonia. This is normal. Most people do not die from a cold because there is a fantastic “vaccine”; it is called the human immune system.

    There were lines of humans with poor corona immune design and they died out from cold viruses. We are the survivors. We can handle most cold viruses. The survivors endure.

    Common sense has been thrown out the window with this panic. The cure today is way worse than the disease. So old people like me die. So what! Welcome to Planet Earth where everyone gets to die. We do not shutdown the USA every winter because we know 18,000 to 46,000 people die every year from the flu. This is insane. We have only lost 775 people in the US from coronavirus. If they had not given it a name then the flu numbers for 2020 so far would look like 23,775 instead of 23,000. We would be unaware of anything called COVID.

    We used to say, “Wow there is a bad bug going around this year.” Now we shut down the restaurants, theaters, the markets, Wall Street. This is nuts. Remember the Hong Kong Flu? We did not close Planet Earth.

    This is the medical version of the “Polar Vortex”. They started using that name a few years ago like it was something new. The Polar Vortex has existed forever – if something is older than 3 million years ago I consider that “forever” from a human point of view since humans have only existed that long.

    Yikes, they say we are cold from a Polar Vortex. I bet that started after we landed on the Moon! :)

    Mother Nature engages in strategies that work well for a species but are extremely risky for the individual. Hibernation is dangerous for the individual. It takes about one-third to one-half of fat reserves for one cycle into and out of hibernation. If a bear has not put on a lot of fat it might not survive winter. If winter gets too warm they come out to feed, if it gets extremely cold a bear comes out of hibernation to avoid freezing to death. It is very risky to enter a second hibernation cycle. The individual might not come out of it.

    Re-open the planet, most people will be fine. Some will die.

    If this is about saving lives then shutdown all the highways in America. Over 100 people die per day in car accidents. So the 775 deaths from COVID is only one week of driving ! This is craziness.

    So what can we anticipate from winter to summer? Per yesterday from Accuweather:
    “As of Tuesday, Iceland has among the world’s highest rates of confirmed coronavirus cases per capita at 0.177 percent, with 648 cases from a population of 364,260. Australia’s confirmed infected rate is just 0.0083 percent – 2,044 cases from a population of 25.4 million people.

    That means Iceland’s infection rate is roughly 22 times greater than Australia’s, not factoring in other variables for either location. While heat and humidity could play a role in the disparity, a look at the impact of UV rays reveals it may be more substantial than the other two weather factors. “
    So it looks like this is what I said above – a variation to the seasonal flu.

    But, yikes, they have found almost 440,000 cases worldwide! Yes, because they are testing specifically for that. If they did not test for it we would say this has been a bad flu season. If for some reason they began looking for blue dots on female left ovaries they would probably find some and claim it is a new phenomenon. It seems new because you are looking for it.

    They are absolutely guilty of sensationalism. A few days ago the headline was “50% increase overnight in Canada” Well there goes Montreal and Quebec and Alberta! The cases went from 20 to 39 – they added 19 cases. This is simply a counting artifact.

    Suspending the US economy for 2 weeks is a negative 4% growth. 2/52 weeks.
    We rave about a 3% GDP growth then we trash it by panicking. This is nuts.

    There are too many people on the planet anyway. The zoological pyramid is teetering. The largest species, whales, comprise the smallest biomass on Earth. Ant’s total mass greatly exceeds that of whales. And bacteria exceed ants. Human biomass is way top heavy for its size.

    If it were young, working, fertile adults dying it would be quite different.
    This stupid fire drill will likely be replayed all over again next year no matter how many people are quarantined now.

    Open Planet Earth. It will be fine.

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