Pioneer cover

From the press release: From the moment he is handed a possibility of making the first alien contact, Saunders Maxwell decides he will do it, even if doing so takes him through hell and back.

 
Unfortunately, that is exactly where that journey takes him.

 
The vision that Zimmerman paints of vibrant human colonies on the Moon, Mars, the asteroids, and beyond, indomitably fighting the harsh lifeless environment of space to build new societies, captures perfectly the emerging space race we see today.


He also captures in Pioneer the heart of the human spirit, willing to push forward no matter the odds, no matter the cost. It is that spirit that will make the exploration of the heavens possible, forever, into the never-ending future.

 
Available everywhere for $3.99 (before discount) at amazon, Barnes & Noble, all ebook vendors, or direct from the ebook publisher, ebookit.
 

Total mortality is DOWN in Europe during Wuhan panic

According to the latest weekly report of overall mortality in Europe, the number of deaths during the March 18 to 24 time period had dropped, even though that was the exact period when the panic and alarm over the COVID-19 epidemic began to reach its height.

The article at the link also notes that this particular flu season has so far been relatively mild, which corresponds with the U.S. data I posted on March 26.

Both the article and his source speculate with some puzzlement as to why this is the case. Obviously, the panic shutting down our entire economy and society is probably helping. At the same time, this flu season was already clearly going to be a mild one, long before the Wuhan panic took over.

Regardless, what these numbers once again suggest is that the response to COVID-19 has been way out of line and over the top. While our bankrupt press keeps focusing on specific deaths and coronavirus mortality rates, they are failing to note that the overall death rate is not changing, and is possibly even dropping.

A good example are the wild rumors, widely reported, of a gigantic order of burial urns for China, implying that these urns were needed because of millions of extra COVID-19 deaths, not reported by the Chinese authorities. What nobody asks is how many urns are normally ordered each year? I suspect the numbers would be quite similar.

We are not all going to die from the Wuhan virus, though the extreme measures our government is forcing us to take might very well kill us, in other ways. At a minimum, those extreme measures are destroying what was once a free society.

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35 comments

  • Ian C.

    I’ve read in European media about the reduced mortality and the lower flu deaths. One assumption is that Covid-19 spreads faster and basically eats flu’s lunch. The other is that greater care and reduced accidents due to Covid-19 awareness and shut down of traffic, work etc. spared a couple of lives.

    Please continue to remain skeptical, it’s always interesting and challenging. In the end, it’s us doomsday drama queens who have to deliver proof.
    In that spirit I’ll compare tomorrow my predictions for American and Swedish (for Lee S) bat soup flu fatalities that I’ve made for March 31 a couple of days ago.

  • Jesse Mullins

    Just more proof that, in typical fashion, any fact that does not advance the chosen narrative is passed over by “journalists.”

  • pzatchok

    Just a thought here.

    I am a gun guy. Have them and use them often.

    Well we have all heard the theory that having a gun in the home increases out chances of being shot by that very gun.
    Now that we are all shut up in our homes with those millions of homicidal firearms just how many more ‘accidental’ gun shot cases are out there? Even with the increased stress we should see a noticeable uptick in home shootings. Shouldn’t we?

  • hondo

    Pity – I was somewhat hoping for zombies so I can truly test my survival skills.

  • Fred Ward

    CDC stats show total deaths from all causes in NYC is down significantly, yet there are reports of reefer trucks used as morgues. Why? There were ZERO traffic fatalities in NYC last week, and other causes of death are way down, too, yet “bodies” are allegedly “stacking up.” From what?

  • Fred Ward: It is called fake news. Any news organization or blogger who reports such stories are lying, or grossly incompetent.

  • Fred Ward: By the way, can you provide the CDC link for the stats on total deaths in New York?

  • Lee S

    @Ian C. Thanks for including my little experiment of a country in your figures!
    Boots on the ground report… I still have a sore throat, intermittent fever has calmed down, and only coughing in the mornings and evenings. Out sitting with a whisky in my local Chinese restaurant/bar….( Which is pretty much empty) 20 feet from anyone else. Generally life continues pretty much as normal here in pinko commie Sweden… Folks on the street, no particular shortages in the stores, public transport an absolute pleasure to use as busses (and I believe trains) are very quiet. I continue to use hand sanitizer and frequent hand washing.. both of which are probably a good idea at the best of times.
    So far only one death of anyone I know, but he was 81 with pre existing lung problems…. Sad, but the flu might have seen him off anyway… Except he had the flu jab, ( which seems to have nailed this season’s strain), still no vaccine for Corona tho…

  • Lee s

    @pzatchok, I know your joking… But it will be interesting to see figures for gun deaths in the US, along with many other metrics… ( Scandinavian countries have high levels of domestic violence… I’m interested to see these figures when all this has passed)

  • Lee S

    It will also be interesting to see what lasting changes occur in society… I predict that working from home ( for those who can ) will either be proved to be a great or bad idea.. personally I hope it proves to be a good thing… So many less commuters can’t be a bad thing for the environment. And I don’t know how it is over there, but in the UK the lockdown seems to have bought out the best in folk, charitable donations are thru the roof, appreciation for healthcare workers ( underpaid everywhere!) Has never been higher, even the appreciation of the unseen vital sevice providers ( think trash collectors, think delivery drivers, think service workers who work the checkouts, fill the shelves etc. ) Has never been higher… Those that oil the wheels that keep our country’s turning might just get a little more kudos… Or perhaps I’m being a little optimistic….

  • Lee S

    @Bob Zimmerman….. You, not I have any idea how this is going to pan out… It could be better than we are being told, it could be much worse…. We simply do not have enough (corroborated) facts to make a balanced judgement yet. It should be pointed out you are just as much “chicken little” as those you reports you cherry pick to report . Quote ‘At a minimum, those extreme measures are destroying what was once a free society.” …. your pushing your agenda, but the sky is not falling in yet… My guess is you will all be ok, whatever the outcome.. and you will still have your Democratic Republic.

  • sippin_bourbon

    Pzatchok

    “Well we have all heard the theory that having a gun in the home increases out chances of being shot by that very gun.”.

    Yes. It is also true the presence of a backyard swimming pool increases the chances of drowning in the very pool.

    Driving increases your chance of causing an accident.

    And being alive increases the chances of dying in general.

    It is a meaningless factoid pushed by those that would rather you not have your weapons of mass destruction.

    “A well-educated electorate, being necessary to the preservation of a free society, the right of the people to keep and read books, shall not be infringed”.

  • Lee S

    Let’s all be honest guys…. There are many many days we are alive, there is only one we die on…. Statically that’s not too bad!

  • Lee S

    I’m babbling now… Probably due to the whisky…. But I’ve made a huge pot of Dhal ( Indian lentil / onion / tomato curry) , cheep as chips, really good, nutritious, and freezes well… A huge pot of root veg soup… Also good, nutritious, and when blended freezes well, bought a load of flour and rice, and some cuts of meat , and some genuine Indian bread for the Dahl… ( I just can’t bake it like my friends or even my corner store can)
    I’m expecting lock down any day now… Reading Swedish news it sounds as much bullcrap as anywhere else in the world… But this “herd immunity” policy don’t seem to be working… Fire up those crematoriums…. I know the opinion on here is “it’s nothing”… But honestly, why do you trust your news sources any more than you trust mine? Why do you trust your governments figures any more than Italy, Spain, the UK, or China? We all know what world we live in… Be skeptical about everything, and cook Indian food… It’s sooooo good! Stay safe guys… I’m back off to bed!

  • James Street

    I noticed when they first started reporting coronavirus deaths they used the phrase “died with the coronavirus”. Lately they use phrases like “coronavirus related deaths”. To inflate the numbers and sell more papers I think the media is counting deaths from cancer or a person being hit and killed by a bus as “coronavirus related death” even if they died from something else and by coincidence also happened to have the coronavirus. Even if the media says outright “died from coronavirus” I would bet they are including all deaths where a person also had the coronavirus.

  • wayne

    Jordan B Peterson’s Drinking Song ?
    2018
    https://youtu.be/VJ3v2oGm6Sk
    3:15

    “You need Adventure man. You need to get out there and have something to do; something worth waking up for. That’s the substitute for the addiction. Actually the addiction is the substitute for that – if truth be known.”

  • pzatchok

    Someone needs to cut back on their medication.

  • Ian C.

    Lee,

    Please consider that consuming alcohol reduces your immune system’s strength. Gargling with alcohol is fine (it has signs of an upper respiratory tract infection), though alcoholic mouthwash should be preferred over expensive whiskey. Having an occasional drink or two won’t exactly kill you (though be careful here during an infection, you need all the immune system’s action), but drinking so much that you question your government’s pandemics strategy is definitely over the top. :)

    Anyway, here are the values for bat flue fatalities vs. my predictions for the US and Sweden:

    US: 4,053 (vs. 3,600 predicted), I was a bit conservative and used the lower end of the growth rate. That’s what I get for not trusting my own numbers.
    https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/us/

    SE: 180 (vs. 300 predicted), numbers made an unexpected side move but are now right on track again and should catch up with the predictions.
    https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/sweden/

    For reference my predictions and when I made them:

    US: (1,209 @ 25Mar2020)
    31Mar2020: 3,600
    05Apr2020: 11,000
    15Apr2020: 105,000

    https://behindtheblack.com/behind-the-black/essays-and-commentaries/covid-19-is-not-going-to-overwhelm-our-healthcare-system/#comment-1078158

    SE: (105 @ 27Mar2020)
    31Mar2020: 300
    05Apr2020: 1,100
    15Apr2020: 15,000

    https://behindtheblack.com/behind-the-black/essays-and-commentaries/covid-19-is-not-going-to-overwhelm-our-healthcare-system/#comment-1078179

    Let’s hope that the American containment measures will show effect between April 5 and 15 and we can switch to the logistic growth phase.
    Sweden on the other hand will continue to go straight up for some weeks until herd immunity is attained or they chicken out like the UK and start implementing measures as well (that should be represented in numbers around three weeks later).

  • Lee S

    @James Street… I’m pleased you would bet … Quote “I would bet they are including all deaths where a person also had the coronavirus.”…. This is a nothing statement… It’s going to be down to the final numbers, after Corona has done it’s 3 sweeps ( historical speaking, that’s how it works .) Thru our population. Betting means nothing right now… Don’t get me wrong… I hope all the nay sayers are correct… But there is a chance you are wrong… The only difference is our opinion of the odds…

  • Lee S

    And here is a question directed directly to our host… Bob, I questioned at the start of this whole poo storm if it was a test for the world’s readiness. The world has been shown to be lacking and with no plan for containment or management. Even if this is a storm in a tea cup, do you have any better idea how we will cope with the inevitable deadly human virus, which is overdue?
    If this isn’t it, it’s in the post… I hope we can vaccine our way out of it… But again, if this is not it, it’s on its way…

  • Lee S

    @Ian C… Quote “Sweden on the other hand will continue to go straight up for some weeks until herd immunity is attained or they chicken out like the UK and start implementing measures as well (that should be represented in numbers around three weeks later).”
    I genuinely have no idea.. as I’ve said before, I feel bad about being sick in such an experiment… But perhaps the government, ( which has many accredited scientists on board… Unlike many other countries) has the best idea… Industry and commerce continues here… Time will tell…

  • Lee S: The first thing one must do in any stressful situation is not panic. Nothing else will help if you either over-react, or act too dismissive.

    It was clear from the beginning that this virus was probably, at worst, going to be comparable (though obviously not identical) to either swine flu or SARS, in a variety of ways. None of the data so far has changed this conclusion. In both those cases, the global community and the U.S. handled it without shutting down the entire society. This time, however, for reasons that I suspect but will put aside for the moment, the reaction was panic and desperate authoritarian edicts.

    Now I worry that when the real pandemic finally arrives sometime in the future, people will shrug and say, “Big deal. It’s probably just another fake Wuhan flu panic.”

    The other possibility, which is as bad, is that we have established the precedent that our government authorities have the right to nonchalantly shutter businesses, religious institutions, political rallies, and even individuals in their homes, merely on a whim.

    To deal with these issues you need to look at the data, compare that with previous similar situations, and make policy based on that. Using models, which is what we have done here, is a very bad mistake. Such models have consistently been found to be wrong, as we have discovered here. See for example this story.

  • Lee s

    Acctually, all the bad things put to one side, I will laugh my ass off if the Swedish model proves more effective than the rest of the world, and especially you guys in the US… I will have ammunition for years .. or Sweden is wrong and the population will die in droves…. It’s a game of wait and see… I’m going 40 on black and 50 on red…. And keeping my masks on hand!

  • Lee S: If you have been reading my posts, you might have sensed that I entirely agree with the approach that Sweden is taking. Your society is actually giving freedom and individual responsibility a higher priority than the general public and our government here in the U.S. It sickens and shames me.

  • Lee S. I should add that it does not do you credit to say that you might get joy from any of this.

  • Cotour

    Some more interesting information from the real world, just spoke to a lab tech from one of the big Manhattan hospitals and asked her if she had any information for me on the virus.

    The hospital has determined that raising the temperature of the hospital and increasing the humidity helps to mitigate the virus.

    Temp in the hospital is now at 80 degrees, I did not ask what the humidity was being kept at.

  • Edward

    Lee S wrote: “The world has been shown to be lacking and with no plan for containment or management.

    Actually, the world was tested with the ebola virus, and passed the test. In that case, the source country did not hide the problem, and the world was able to gain quick containment even on the outliers that escaped the primary containment mechanism. In this case, the primary and secondary containment mechanisms failed because the information that would initiate them was hidden from us.

    Robert wrote: “Such models have consistently been found to be wrong, as we have discovered here.

    Keep in mind that all models are wrong. Some models are useful. A model’s accuracy depends upon what is known for its creation and for the boundary conditions input into it. Many people mistake the map for the territory. With as much uncertainty as we have with the Wuhan Flue, we cannot trust the map.

    For comparison with last year’s flue deaths of 60,000, consider that this is 20 deaths for every 100,000 people in America. Assuming that this was distributed evenly throughout the country (low density rural areas equally as affected as high density urban areas), then we should have seen 1600 deaths occur in New York City and more in the region around NYC. Since we now have a lockdown in NYC and its region, a direct comparison this year will be difficult. However, perhaps we can compare the two years in Sweden, as it seems to be a reasonable control group, as its reaction this year is similar to last year. We can also compare other areas that reacted differently, such as South Korea and Japan. An analysis of the three different reactions should prove useful for future outbreaks.

    On the other hand, New York’s Democratic Governor, Cuomo, said that he may have made a mistake and overreacted with his lockdown, now that the latest model shows 10% as many deaths as predicted in the earlier model that he used to make his decision. What a difference a weekend makes.

    We may be discovering what a life is worth. Cuomo seems to think that it may be worth destroying the economy and ending our liberty in order to save two million lives, but not 2 hundred thousand.

    [Sweden] is actually giving freedom and individual responsibility a higher priority than the general public and our government here in the U.S. It sickens and shames me.

    Welcome to Obama’s (fundamentally transformed) America, land of the formerly free.

  • pzatchok

    I kind of look at this as a whole world testing ground.
    With just about every nation doing something a little different we will know in a year which was the most effective in slowing or stopping the deaths.

    As for our government shutting things down.
    I think Trumps advisors over reacted and advised his a little to forcefully.
    But i also think that everything Trump has done is at least in part politically motivated.
    If he did nothing he would be a mass murderer and is he instituted martial law he would be a called a dictator. All by the same people who hate him.
    So he took a soft hand approach.
    It might have also been slower but I think he was basically forced into it with the election coming up.

    Obama did nothing when it was his turn but he walked on water according to the MSM press and could do no wrong.

    For as bad as it tastes i think Trump has done well.

  • Rose

    Lee S: … as I’ve said before, I feel bad about being sick in such an experiment…

    Bad? You feel bad? You are on track to make it through without lasting damage, right? Then why don’t you instead feel proud that you are contributing to your region’s herd immunity, and hugely relived that you have achieved personal immunity at so little cost?

  • Lee S

    @Bob…quote “Lee S. I should add that it does not do you credit to say that you might get joy from any of this.”
    This is a “lost in translation” moment. I gain no joy at all from any of this… It’s just the British ironic humour, we tend to make wisecracks as a coping mechanism. I forget sometimes that although we almost share the same language, sometimes the humour does not translate.

  • Cotour

    But your Swedish now.

    You Left the way, way too Liberal and Left leaning chaos of England 20 years ago, for the preferred and more civilized Liberalism of the Swedes. Are you not required to fully assimilate and adjust your humor?

    And I appreciate dark humor, but your statement was based in your anticipate glee in being right about how many deaths there would be or not be.

    Maybe even too dark for me.

  • Lee S

    @Cotour, sorry you didn’t get the irony also…. I know if you have to explain the joke it’s not funny…. But I was kinda pointing at the absurdity of getting glee on a forum Vs people dying.
    Regarding assimilating Swedish humour… As I tell my friends, Swedish humour is just like English humour, but without the funny bits. ;-)

  • Lee S

    @Rose…. That was a bit of a typo… I meant to type “stuck” rather than “sick”… Not that it matters much. I have massive cognitive dissonance here…. I’m kinda proud that the Swedish government has the balls to “go it alone” , and I hope their approach works…. I am also nervous that it won’t….
    As for contributing to herd immunity, of course I’m happy for that… even us pinko commies have a sense of social responsibility. ;-)

  • Lee S

    @anyone who will listen…. I listen to Rachel Maddow from time to time… ( I’m sure that will not suprise anyone!), But oh my….. I kinda get what Bob is saying regarding chicken little syndrome! I could not get past the first 5 min. of yesterday’s show… There is no point of outrage for its own sake, but she’s got it in trump’s just lately! ( Pun very much intended!)
    Obviously I tend to favour the more left leaning news sources over here ( although not exclusively), but we have nothing like the panic and outrage Rachel was spouting… So Bob, I take some of what I said regarding “chicken little” back… I still believe we don’t yet know what we are dealing with, but I didn’t realize we are all going to die, and it’s all Trump’s fault!

  • Cotour

    You have been voluntarily polluting your own brain by choosing to watch such a person. It should have taken you maybe 15 minutes to realize what Ms. Maddow was all about.

    The people that I know who have watched her are all screwed up and come to me when they are soooo confused about things that they can not take it any more. You are a classic case.

    What do I tell ALL people who come to me terrified and trembling with fear? STOP WATCHING THE MEDIA!”. They are not your friend.

    There is however hope if you have seen what you say you have seen.

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