The Unz Review: An Alternative Media Selection
A Collection of Interesting, Important, and Controversial Perspectives Largely Excluded from the American Mainstream Media
 TeasersiSteve Blog
Efficient Markets or Complacent Markets?
🔊 Listen RSS
Email This Page to Someone

 Remember My Information



=>

Bookmark Toggle AllToCAdd to LibraryRemove from Library • BShow CommentNext New CommentNext New ReplyRead More
ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
AgreeDisagreeThanksLOLTroll
These buttons register your public Agreement, Disagreement, Thanks, LOL, or Troll with the selected comment. They are ONLY available to recent, frequent commenters who have saved their Name+Email using the 'Remember My Information' checkbox, and may also ONLY be used three times during any eight hour period.
Ignore Commenter Follow Commenter
Search Text Case Sensitive  Exact Words  Include Comments
List of Bookmarks

Today seems to be the day when the stock market noticed, “Oh, yeah, this coronavirus thing could be bad.”

Financial historian Niall Ferguson has pointed out that during the five weeks in 1914 between the assassination of the Archduke Franz Ferdinand on June 28 and the outbreak of mass fighting in the first week of August, the financial markets were clueless about what was coming until the last week of July 1914. Russian imperial bond yields, for example, were absolutely stable through July until the last week of the month, even though Communists would be ruling Russia within 40 months.

 
Hide 81 CommentsLeave a Comment
Commenters to Ignore...to FollowEndorsed Only
Trim Comments?
  1. Perhaps it’s more than stock markets aren’t as “panicky” as media might have us believe?

    It’s really annoying when the market has a rise or a dip and some pundit claims its because “X” happened simultaneously. That’s it; it’s all correlation, no proof of causation, and yet economic history is full of writings claiming the correlation proves causation.

    Financial pundits are almost as useless as political ones, and for the same reasons.

    • Replies: @Hhsiii
    Yes I also heard today’s pullback referred to as due to Corona, but also because of Bernie Sanders doing well. Or because it’s overdue for a correction.
    , @Achmed E. Newman

    That’s it; it’s all correlation, no proof of causation, and yet economic history is full of writings claiming the correlation proves causation.
     
    Right. Thank you for that one, Mr. Camara.

    It's not only that there's no theory behind their "technical trading" BS (more like seances with graphs), but do you notice that none of these financial pundits tell you IN THE MORNING that this or that stock, bond or exchange rate will go up or down because of what we all know is happening that day? Nope, they tell you in the evening, after the markets close. Missed it by THAT much!

    They do a great deal of after-the-fact explaining.
  2. It was cheap to hedge against market risk last week.

    But a bigger risk may be a shortage of medicine and medical equipment due to supply chain disruptions in China. Ultimately, the coronavirus may do more to bring manufacturing back to the U.S. than Trump’s tariffs. It will certainly complement them.

    • Agree: James Speaks, El Dato
    • Replies: @RichardTaylor

    But a bigger risk may be a shortage of medicine and medical equipment due to supply chain disruptions in China.
     
    Great point, we need to get the production of key medicines and medical supplies back to America.
  3. The patients can only pray that they are undocumented so they’ll get expedited treatment.

  4. I’ve been following coronavirus closer than any news story since the 2016 election.

    A few signs it could be very bad:

    1 or 2 superspreaders infected 600+ people on a cruise ship

    1 person spread it to 200+ people in one Korean city

    With these two credible non-Chinese sources showing the ability of single people to superspread, and likely 100k infected people fleeing Wuhan (or passing through because it is a major train hub), you’d expect similar stories all over China.

    15% of the people infected in the Dec 2019 and Jan 1-10 periods in Wuhan in one study died.

    Those dystopian nightmare cell phone videos of Chinese soldiers and police with facemasks beating and dragging people away on the street. If it were just a couple I might think anecdotes or fakes. But I’ve seen dozens.

    Those built in a week Chinese “hospitals” are just giant steel hangers full of hospital beds crammed together. If you got sent to one with just a regular head cold or flu, the chance of a corona infection must be over 75%.

    TomTom has realtime traffic stats for about 15 major Chinese cities. All of them show car travel is down about 80%. And of course subway and bus travel would be down even more. You can’t shut down most of the world’s 2nd largest economy like this for months without a worldwide recession. Pollution trackers also show that industrial activity has nearly stopped.

    • Agree: Desiderius
    • Replies: @415 reasons
    You think that’s bad? In less than 100 days we’ll all be living in that nightmarish cell phone video. There’s two kinds of people in this world... people who understand exponential growth and people who aren’t scared of Coronavirus.
    , @Reg Cæsar

    Those dystopian nightmare cell phone videos of Chinese soldiers and police with facemasks beating and dragging people away on the street. If it were just a couple I might think anecdotes or fakes. But I’ve seen dozens.

     

    The Viricultural Revolution. Led by the Bed Guards.

    You can’t shut down most of the world’s 2nd largest economy like this for months without a worldwide recession.
     
    The shelves at Dollar Tree will be empty!

    Pollution trackers also show that industrial activity has nearly stopped.
     
    Climate change we can live with!

    Say, has anyone heard from Greenpeace lately? They've been awful quiet of late...
    , @reiner Tor

    15% of the people infected in the Dec 2019 and Jan 1-10 periods in Wuhan in one study died.
     
    Though only the worst cases were caught at the time, the rest being like a regular flu, and the asymptomatic cases never tested either. So a lot of selection bias.

    What worries me most is things like this:

    https://edition.cnn.com/2020/02/19/business/pharma-drugs-coronavirus/index.html

    We might die of secondary bacterial infections, because we won’t have a large enough stockpiles of antibiotics, and supply chains will be disrupted.

    Will there be people working at power plants, or will they stay home, either because they are ill or they fear being ill? What would happen if power plants no longer had employees, either because of illness or to avoid infection? I now think the Chinese shut down their economy for this reason, to avoid such a scenario. Will we shut down our own societies, too? It could be worse than in China.

    I now fear the moment when Xi Jinping will look better than our own leaders...

    , @Bill P
    Chinese "public safety" brigades (they used to be called bao an, but I think they have a different name now) beat and drag people all the time, virus or not. It only looks more menacing now because they're wearing masks.

    Coronavirus is real, and it's bad, but I doubt the fatality rate would be as high here in the US as it is in China. For starters, Americans know better than to put their faith in Chinese medicine and associated superstitious quackery, whereas Chinese still genuinely believe in that stuff. We're also way cleaner than Chinese, who don't even bother washing their hands in restaurant washrooms, let alone hospitals.

    That said, I hope I don't have to take my chances with this virus. I've already had enough nasty infections, including a bout of viral pneumonia (contracted in China) and the swine flu, to know how unpleasant they can be.

    I just hope everyone learns the proper lesson from this, which is that China's progress toward modernity is a mile wide and an inch deep.
  5. @Lot
    I’ve been following coronavirus closer than any news story since the 2016 election.

    A few signs it could be very bad:

    1 or 2 superspreaders infected 600+ people on a cruise ship

    1 person spread it to 200+ people in one Korean city

    With these two credible non-Chinese sources showing the ability of single people to superspread, and likely 100k infected people fleeing Wuhan (or passing through because it is a major train hub), you’d expect similar stories all over China.

    15% of the people infected in the Dec 2019 and Jan 1-10 periods in Wuhan in one study died.

    Those dystopian nightmare cell phone videos of Chinese soldiers and police with facemasks beating and dragging people away on the street. If it were just a couple I might think anecdotes or fakes. But I’ve seen dozens.

    Those built in a week Chinese “hospitals” are just giant steel hangers full of hospital beds crammed together. If you got sent to one with just a regular head cold or flu, the chance of a corona infection must be over 75%.

    TomTom has realtime traffic stats for about 15 major Chinese cities. All of them show car travel is down about 80%. And of course subway and bus travel would be down even more. You can’t shut down most of the world’s 2nd largest economy like this for months without a worldwide recession. Pollution trackers also show that industrial activity has nearly stopped.

    You think that’s bad? In less than 100 days we’ll all be living in that nightmarish cell phone video. There’s two kinds of people in this world… people who understand exponential growth and people who aren’t scared of Coronavirus.

    • Replies: @Kratoklastes

    There’s two kinds of people in this world… people who understand epidemiology and people who are scared of Coronavirus.
     
    FIFYA.

    Every time the northern flu season generates this 'Pestilence Armageddon' media-hysteric horse-shit, a bunch of scaredy-cat gullible innumerate 'tards get shown a chart of eʸ and think that means everyone in the world will be infected in t = f(y).

    There is nothing in the data for coronavirus that is worrisome.

    I fetch the data every day (there are now plenty of repositories with good APIs) and look at it every day just to confirm my prior.

    To be clear, my prior is that it's a typical northern-Flu-Season hysteria being ginned up by the media and government - like SARS, H1N1, Chikungunya, 'grippe aviare' and so forth. All touted as potential existential threats - all turned out to be damp squibs.

    Then again, nobody ever got their government sinecure/quango/boondoggle extended by crying "No Wolf!" or "The Sky Is Not Falling".

    .

    Almost nobody on the planet would be happier than me if this turned out to cut a massive swathe through the billions of dumbfounded dipshits that infest major cities: I have long said that a Black Death would be a nice purgative. Harsh, but I think you'll agree, fair.

    But this pissweak pathogen is not it.

    Humanity is well overdue for a genuine "middle finger" from Nature's panoply of greeblies: the irresponsible over-use of antibiotics, anti-retrovirals and disinfectants in the mid-late 20th century was like humanity tasking evolution with selectively strengthening its mechanisms to fuck humans up.

    This is not that. It's nowhere near that.

    A month after the first identified 'outbreak', a densely-populated city of 20 million has roughly 100K cases (many of which will be false positives): the deaths have been almost universally associated with advanced age, comorbidities, or both.

    That is fucking pissweak. Nature can do better. No - Nature must do better in order to be taken seriously.

    .

    Compare pissweak coronavirus to what swine flu did to the Chinese pig population in 2019: if the epidemiology is to be believed, it was responsible for the death of 55% of China's pig herd in less than 6 months.

    ASF wasn't 'taking off' elderly pigs (no such thing in Chinese factory-farms), or just pigs with dicky tickers or dodgy livers. It was fucking up entire herds - as I understand it, the death toll from the pathogen itself was greater than the 'prophylactic' slaughter.

    May2019 the death toll was 1 million; by December 2019 it was 100 million.

    Worse still: it was almost certainly spread deliberately.

    Tangentially, it's yet more evidence that organised international terrrrrrism is a fabrication.

    The International Fraternity of Butthurt Arabs could very easily acquire a pathogen like ASF and distribute it in US industrial farms - it is one of 100 easy plots that they could hatch if they were an adversary worth the name (or if they existed).

    Likewise, they have failed to perpetrate widespread pylloxera in the Napa Valley etc. Why not, given that it would be a high-yield, low-cost, impossible-to-prevent action?

    Answer: because there is no such thing as organised global terrrrrrism - it's a media and government-created boogeyman.

    Just like coronavirus.

    .

    When this horse-shit is dropped like a hot potato the moment the Northern Spring starts in earnest, I will be certain to come back to this and tell you I told you so. Not terribly sporting, but it is what it is.
  6. Anon[315] • Disclaimer says:

    No, it’s because Sanders might become president. Cooperman represents the views of people who move markets:

    https://www.cnbc.com/2020/02/18/leon-cooperman-says-bernie-sanders-is-a-bigger-threat-to-the-stock-market-than-the-coronavirus.html

    “I look at Bernie Sanders as a bigger threat [to the stock market] than the coronavirus,” Cooperman, the billionaire investor and founder of Omega Advisors, told CNBC’s Scott Wapner on the “Halftime Report.” “I don’t have any insight into the coronavirus, but I assume, with all the great minds of the world focused on this problem, that in three or four months this will become resolved.”

    But “there are things that are very troubling to me. No. 1 is Bernie Sanders,” Cooperman said Tuesday. “He is not a socialist. He is, rather, a communist. … I just hope the country isn’t ready to elect a communist or a socialist. If we do, I think the market is in store for a big problem.”

    • Replies: @Anon
    Sanders is in the age range where, if he catches Covid-19, he'd better watch out. He's elderly and he's had a heart attack, and is presumably taking heart medicine. There's already been information coming out of studies that you don't want to be an elderly person with a heart condition if you catch this. Covid-19 can finish you off.

    Bloomberg's got an irregular heartbeat, and he's on meds for it. He may not do well, either.

    Biden's doc says Biden's got an irregular heartbeat, but he doesn't take medication to stabilize it! That guy . . . what a moron.

    Buttigieg had better watch out too. His immune system may also be compromised if he's spend too much time cruising for sex. A doctor once noted that one reason why the gay community got hit so hard by HIV is because gays' sexual habits had trashed their immune systems, exposing them to massive viral loads, right before HIV hit. Although HIV was a death sentence in its early days, some gays might have lived long enough to be able to take the new generation of HIV medicines.

    Obama smokes. He's not going to do well if he gets sick with Covid-19.

    As for Hillary and Pelosi, supposedly they're on meds for various conditions, too.

    The future is going to be interesting.
  7. @Lot
    I’ve been following coronavirus closer than any news story since the 2016 election.

    A few signs it could be very bad:

    1 or 2 superspreaders infected 600+ people on a cruise ship

    1 person spread it to 200+ people in one Korean city

    With these two credible non-Chinese sources showing the ability of single people to superspread, and likely 100k infected people fleeing Wuhan (or passing through because it is a major train hub), you’d expect similar stories all over China.

    15% of the people infected in the Dec 2019 and Jan 1-10 periods in Wuhan in one study died.

    Those dystopian nightmare cell phone videos of Chinese soldiers and police with facemasks beating and dragging people away on the street. If it were just a couple I might think anecdotes or fakes. But I’ve seen dozens.

    Those built in a week Chinese “hospitals” are just giant steel hangers full of hospital beds crammed together. If you got sent to one with just a regular head cold or flu, the chance of a corona infection must be over 75%.

    TomTom has realtime traffic stats for about 15 major Chinese cities. All of them show car travel is down about 80%. And of course subway and bus travel would be down even more. You can’t shut down most of the world’s 2nd largest economy like this for months without a worldwide recession. Pollution trackers also show that industrial activity has nearly stopped.

    Those dystopian nightmare cell phone videos of Chinese soldiers and police with facemasks beating and dragging people away on the street. If it were just a couple I might think anecdotes or fakes. But I’ve seen dozens.

    The Viricultural Revolution. Led by the Bed Guards.

    You can’t shut down most of the world’s 2nd largest economy like this for months without a worldwide recession.

    The shelves at Dollar Tree will be empty!

    Pollution trackers also show that industrial activity has nearly stopped.

    Climate change we can live with!

    Say, has anyone heard from Greenpeace lately? They’ve been awful quiet of late…

  8. anon[130] • Disclaimer says:

    Today seems to be the day when the stock market noticed, “Oh, yeah, this coronavirus thing could be bad.”

    Apple’s warning earlier this week regarding their supply chains percolated through the financial analyst world. Then selloff. Treasury bond yields are the lowest ever. a sign of fear.

    Any good news, or even not-bad news should cause a rebound, though, given the quantitative-easing that is not QE.

    Production has been moving out of China for a few years, to places such as Viet Nam, this year it has increased.

    Trump’s statement about bringing drug production back to the US is a good play for him and a good idea for the US.

  9. Today seems to be the day when the stock market noticed

    Commodities markets noticed a couple of days ago. But it’s truly weird how long it takes the stock market to notice things. Time after time. I always trade too soon, which–while better than trading too late–isn’t the way to make a killing. I agree with Mr Camara upthread that correlations are often claimed even when unwarranted, but I’m also inclined to agree with Lot that this event seems uniquely scary.

    Lately there have been reports that the virus can remain viable on environmental surfaces (doorknobs, elevator buttons, etc) much longer than originally thought–several days, it’s been claimed. Compared to every single person I know IRL, I’m almost panicking. Compared to several people in this very comment thread, not to mention elsewhere online, I’m complacent.

    One thing I have been doing is stocking up on shelf-stable foods and such. Only buying things my family will consume anyway. What can be the harm in that? By the time other people have this idea, it’ll be too late. Heck, our grocery stores have their shelves cleared when an inch or two of snow is predicted. So, just as with trading, I jump the gun a bit.

  10. FWIW I’ve been watching gold prices spike. Even goldprice.org lost the thread on their 30-day chart.

    • Replies: @LondonBob
    Gold has gone ballistic, on the plus side Steve will be getting a nice donation from me shortly when I decide to take some profits on my gold mining shares.
  11. Anon[126] • Disclaimer says:

    In Japan, where there are not even really that many patients yet compared to China and Korea:

    — Complaints about lack of disclosure from local officials about what train lines patients rode on, where they are, etc. I’m not sure this sort of information should be made public in a sort of “sex offender database” style manner, but the controversy shows growing concern on the part of the public.

    — A couple of B level theme parks shut down for the next month, including the Hello Kitty park. The Tokyo marathon had previously changed to a pros only, no amateur event.

    — Doctors and small clinics want to be able to turn away patients, and want the government to designate places for them to go for examination. The clinics say that they cannot segregate different types of patients, and they cannot do the test themselves. The government has already told concerned people to stay at home if they do not have serious symptoms and are not in a high risk group for pneumonia death.

    — Hospitals say they are at risk of maxing out on beds so they will not be able to handle a big increase.

    — People are wondering why so much decision-making is being done at the local level by indecisive local bureaucrats and politicians. I think that this will be a big problem in the United States with all its federalism, made worse by “diversity” and the resulting claims that any decision is discriminatory towards someone.

    Ever since Fukushima I have felt that there should be some sort of disaster special forces organization that would be statutorily tasked with jumping in and managing disasters, with the explicit goal of taking bureaucrats and politicians out of the loop and giving them some CYA. The disaster organization would be given something akin to martial law power for a period of time, a week or a month or so, to make hard decisions, for instance for decisions like venting radioactive gas from reactors to avoid worse future consequences. It would be like having EU-style technocrats running things for a little while without having EU-style technocrats in charge all the time.

    But I already sense a sort of epidemic fatigue, people moving on to other topics. Japanese victims have mostly been elderly, so people may think of it as a kinder way for gramps to die than cancer. When young adults start to die, maybe the panic will reassert itself.

    I think I might pick up some books about the black plague. I had always intended to read Daniel Defoe’s quasi-fictional A Journal of the Plague Year. Here’s Samuel Pepys bragging about his courage in not fleeing London until things completely went off the rails:

    I having stayed in the city till above 7,400 died in one week, and of them above 6,000 of the plague, and little noise heard day nor night but tolling of bells; till I could walk Lombard Street and not meet twenty persons from one end to the other, and not fifty upon the Exchange; till whole families (ten and twelve together) have been swept away; till my very physican, Dr. Burnet, who undertook to secure me against any infection . . . died himself of the plague; till the nights (though much lengthened) are grown too short to conceal the burials of those that died the day before, people thereby constrained to borrow daylight for that service; lastly, till I could find neither meat nor drink safe, the butcheries being everywhere visited, my brewer’s house shut up, and my baker with his whole family dead of the plague. Yet, Madam, through God’s blessing and the good humours begot in my attendance upon our late Amours [he means the recent wedding] your poor servant is in a perfect state of health.

    • Replies: @Eagle Eye

    Ever since Fukushima I have felt that there should be some sort of disaster special forces organization that would be statutorily tasked with jumping in and managing disasters, with the explicit goal of taking bureaucrats and politicians out of the loop and giving them some CYA.

    The disaster organization would be given something akin to martial law power for a period of time, a week or a month or so, to make hard decisions, for instance for decisions like venting radioactive gas from reactors to avoid worse future consequences. It would be like having EU-style technocrats running things for a little while without having EU-style technocrats in charge all the time.
     

    Brilliant idea! Send in the supermen to clean things up, like the Pied Piper.

    The plague cleaned up, our unaccountable supermen will, of course, quietly and without payment return to their far-away military bases, never to be heard from again.

  12. Anon[999] • Disclaimer says:
    @Anon
    No, it's because Sanders might become president. Cooperman represents the views of people who move markets:

    https://www.cnbc.com/2020/02/18/leon-cooperman-says-bernie-sanders-is-a-bigger-threat-to-the-stock-market-than-the-coronavirus.html

    "I look at Bernie Sanders as a bigger threat [to the stock market] than the coronavirus," Cooperman, the billionaire investor and founder of Omega Advisors, told CNBC's Scott Wapner on the "Halftime Report." "I don't have any insight into the coronavirus, but I assume, with all the great minds of the world focused on this problem, that in three or four months this will become resolved."

    But "there are things that are very troubling to me. No. 1 is Bernie Sanders," Cooperman said Tuesday. "He is not a socialist. He is, rather, a communist. ... I just hope the country isn't ready to elect a communist or a socialist. If we do, I think the market is in store for a big problem."
     

    Sanders is in the age range where, if he catches Covid-19, he’d better watch out. He’s elderly and he’s had a heart attack, and is presumably taking heart medicine. There’s already been information coming out of studies that you don’t want to be an elderly person with a heart condition if you catch this. Covid-19 can finish you off.

    Bloomberg’s got an irregular heartbeat, and he’s on meds for it. He may not do well, either.

    Biden’s doc says Biden’s got an irregular heartbeat, but he doesn’t take medication to stabilize it! That guy . . . what a moron.

    Buttigieg had better watch out too. His immune system may also be compromised if he’s spend too much time cruising for sex. A doctor once noted that one reason why the gay community got hit so hard by HIV is because gays’ sexual habits had trashed their immune systems, exposing them to massive viral loads, right before HIV hit. Although HIV was a death sentence in its early days, some gays might have lived long enough to be able to take the new generation of HIV medicines.

    Obama smokes. He’s not going to do well if he gets sick with Covid-19.

    As for Hillary and Pelosi, supposedly they’re on meds for various conditions, too.

    The future is going to be interesting.

    • Replies: @Redneck farmer
    Congressman Smith (Bernie Bro-Illinois)
    , @Jus' Sayin'...
    I'm glad someone has finally found a silver lining in the coming Covid-19 pandemic.
  13. @415 reasons
    You think that’s bad? In less than 100 days we’ll all be living in that nightmarish cell phone video. There’s two kinds of people in this world... people who understand exponential growth and people who aren’t scared of Coronavirus.

    There’s two kinds of people in this world… people who understand epidemiology and people who are scared of Coronavirus.

    FIFYA.

    Every time the northern flu season generates this ‘Pestilence Armageddon‘ media-hysteric horse-shit, a bunch of scaredy-cat gullible innumerate ‘tards get shown a chart of eʸ and think that means everyone in the world will be infected in t = f(y).

    There is nothing in the data for coronavirus that is worrisome.

    I fetch the data every day (there are now plenty of repositories with good APIs) and look at it every day just to confirm my prior.

    To be clear, my prior is that it’s a typical northern-Flu-Season hysteria being ginned up by the media and government – like SARS, H1N1, Chikungunya, ‘grippe aviare‘ and so forth. All touted as potential existential threats – all turned out to be damp squibs.

    Then again, nobody ever got their government sinecure/quango/boondoggle extended by crying “No Wolf!” or “The Sky Is Not Falling“.

    .

    Almost nobody on the planet would be happier than me if this turned out to cut a massive swathe through the billions of dumbfounded dipshits that infest major cities: I have long said that a Black Death would be a nice purgative. Harsh, but I think you’ll agree, fair.

    But this pissweak pathogen is not it.

    Humanity is well overdue for a genuine “middle finger” from Nature’s panoply of greeblies: the irresponsible over-use of antibiotics, anti-retrovirals and disinfectants in the mid-late 20th century was like humanity tasking evolution with selectively strengthening its mechanisms to fuck humans up.

    This is not that. It’s nowhere near that.

    A month after the first identified ‘outbreak’, a densely-populated city of 20 million has roughly 100K cases (many of which will be false positives): the deaths have been almost universally associated with advanced age, comorbidities, or both.

    That is fucking pissweak. Nature can do better. No – Nature must do better in order to be taken seriously.

    .

    Compare pissweak coronavirus to what swine flu did to the Chinese pig population in 2019: if the epidemiology is to be believed, it was responsible for the death of 55% of China’s pig herd in less than 6 months.

    ASF wasn’t ‘taking off’ elderly pigs (no such thing in Chinese factory-farms), or just pigs with dicky tickers or dodgy livers. It was fucking up entire herds – as I understand it, the death toll from the pathogen itself was greater than the ‘prophylactic’ slaughter.

    May2019 the death toll was 1 million; by December 2019 it was 100 million.

    Worse still: it was almost certainly spread deliberately.

    Tangentially, it’s yet more evidence that organised international terrrrrrism is a fabrication.

    The International Fraternity of Butthurt Arabs could very easily acquire a pathogen like ASF and distribute it in US industrial farms – it is one of 100 easy plots that they could hatch if they were an adversary worth the name (or if they existed).

    Likewise, they have failed to perpetrate widespread pylloxera in the Napa Valley etc. Why not, given that it would be a high-yield, low-cost, impossible-to-prevent action?

    Answer: because there is no such thing as organised global terrrrrrism it’s a media and government-created boogeyman.

    Just like coronavirus.

    .

    When this horse-shit is dropped like a hot potato the moment the Northern Spring starts in earnest, I will be certain to come back to this and tell you I told you so. Not terribly sporting, but it is what it is.

    • Thanks: Old Prude
    • Replies: @The Wild Geese Howard

    When this horse-shit is dropped like a hot potato the moment the Northern Spring starts in earnest, I will be certain to come back to this and tell you I told you so. Not terribly sporting, but it is what it is.
     
    March is a little over a week away, the official start of Spring is a month away.

    Get ready for Dow 32k!
    , @reiner Tor
    So you think China shut down its economy over the flu? Okay.
    , @Anonymous
    Has anyone noticed it mainly kills Asians? I read somewhere that East Asians have more ACE2 receptors in the lungs and results in their lungs being overwhelmed by this specific virus. SARS and this coronavirus adhere to those ACE2 receptors. Other ethnic groups don’t have as many ACE2 receptors. Something for us in HBD world to think about. Different genes, different immune system response...

    Light research of SARS from 2002-2003 shows only 2 Caucasians died from it. One was an Italian doctor who treated the first cases in Asia and he technically died from a heart attack.

    The Italian victim announced this morning only tested positive for the initial simple Coronavirus swab test, definitive blood tests are not back yet. And he was aged 78 and may have had pre-existing conditions.

    Something to contemplate. Any epidemiologists out there? I don’t think it’s a biological weapon, that’s a bridge too far. But I’d love some research on SARS and this new novel virus to test this thesis if it kills certain group more quickly due to genetic underlying reasons.

    , @Johnny Smoggins
    The virus was designed to fuck up the Chinese economy, not to kill hundreds of millions of people. And in that regard, it's been very successful.
    , @Jus' Sayin'...
    I spent the last fifteen years of my active career as an epidemiologist in my state's department of public. Back in the 1980s I and a colleague developed a model that quite accurately predicted the eventual spread of HIV/AIDS, by dividing the population into infection pools, with transmission rates that differed within and between group and by stage of disease, a novel approach at the time. In my later career I was part of a team studying different drug addictions and the resulting morbidity and mortality as if they were infectious, chronic diseases.

    I know as well as anyone how difficult it is to predict the spread of a novel pathogen and the resulting mortality and morbidity. However, the patterns that are beginning to emerge from within China, from the quarantined cruise ship, and now from a growing number of widely scattered hot spots are extremely concerning. The apparent likelihood of a worldwide pandemic now appears to be much greater than it was even a week ago and the growth in potential threat level seems to be accelerating. A pandemic, should it occur, would be accompanied by severe social disruption and high mortality rates, due both to the disease itself and the pandemic's broader impacts on society. It would likely be accompanied and followed by widespread and novel patterns of morbidity.

    I do not intend to write a jeremiad but neither would I scoff at the potential for a serious, possibly catastrophic, pandemic.
    , @Mike1
    Too stupid to understand garbage in, garbage out. Also wtf does an API have to do with looking at this data?!
  14. @Lot
    I’ve been following coronavirus closer than any news story since the 2016 election.

    A few signs it could be very bad:

    1 or 2 superspreaders infected 600+ people on a cruise ship

    1 person spread it to 200+ people in one Korean city

    With these two credible non-Chinese sources showing the ability of single people to superspread, and likely 100k infected people fleeing Wuhan (or passing through because it is a major train hub), you’d expect similar stories all over China.

    15% of the people infected in the Dec 2019 and Jan 1-10 periods in Wuhan in one study died.

    Those dystopian nightmare cell phone videos of Chinese soldiers and police with facemasks beating and dragging people away on the street. If it were just a couple I might think anecdotes or fakes. But I’ve seen dozens.

    Those built in a week Chinese “hospitals” are just giant steel hangers full of hospital beds crammed together. If you got sent to one with just a regular head cold or flu, the chance of a corona infection must be over 75%.

    TomTom has realtime traffic stats for about 15 major Chinese cities. All of them show car travel is down about 80%. And of course subway and bus travel would be down even more. You can’t shut down most of the world’s 2nd largest economy like this for months without a worldwide recession. Pollution trackers also show that industrial activity has nearly stopped.

    15% of the people infected in the Dec 2019 and Jan 1-10 periods in Wuhan in one study died.

    Though only the worst cases were caught at the time, the rest being like a regular flu, and the asymptomatic cases never tested either. So a lot of selection bias.

    What worries me most is things like this:

    https://edition.cnn.com/2020/02/19/business/pharma-drugs-coronavirus/index.html

    We might die of secondary bacterial infections, because we won’t have a large enough stockpiles of antibiotics, and supply chains will be disrupted.

    Will there be people working at power plants, or will they stay home, either because they are ill or they fear being ill? What would happen if power plants no longer had employees, either because of illness or to avoid infection? I now think the Chinese shut down their economy for this reason, to avoid such a scenario. Will we shut down our own societies, too? It could be worse than in China.

    I now fear the moment when Xi Jinping will look better than our own leaders…

    • Replies: @Lot
    “ I now fear the moment when Xi Jinping will look better than our own leaders”

    We can’t shut down illegal migration at our border, we sure aren’t going to be enforcing massive quarantines like the Chinese are.

    We still don’t have a China travel ban!

  15. @reiner Tor

    15% of the people infected in the Dec 2019 and Jan 1-10 periods in Wuhan in one study died.
     
    Though only the worst cases were caught at the time, the rest being like a regular flu, and the asymptomatic cases never tested either. So a lot of selection bias.

    What worries me most is things like this:

    https://edition.cnn.com/2020/02/19/business/pharma-drugs-coronavirus/index.html

    We might die of secondary bacterial infections, because we won’t have a large enough stockpiles of antibiotics, and supply chains will be disrupted.

    Will there be people working at power plants, or will they stay home, either because they are ill or they fear being ill? What would happen if power plants no longer had employees, either because of illness or to avoid infection? I now think the Chinese shut down their economy for this reason, to avoid such a scenario. Will we shut down our own societies, too? It could be worse than in China.

    I now fear the moment when Xi Jinping will look better than our own leaders...

    “ I now fear the moment when Xi Jinping will look better than our own leaders”

    We can’t shut down illegal migration at our border, we sure aren’t going to be enforcing massive quarantines like the Chinese are.

    We still don’t have a China travel ban!

    • Agree: reiner Tor
    • Replies: @Mr McKenna
    In 2012 I was refused entry to Hong Kong because I'd been in Brasil during the previous few months, and hadn't had yellow fever & malaria immunizations (because I hadn't travelled to any endemic zones). Strangely, there were no protests against the racist Chinese policies at the time.
    , @Desiderius
    We've been without leaders for several years, maybe decades.
    , @RichardTaylor

    We can’t shut down illegal migration at our border, we sure aren’t going to be enforcing massive quarantines like the Chinese are.
     
    They could shut down illegal immigration in a heartbeat if they wanted to. Eisenhower did so and kicked out over a million illegals in the 50s.
  16. My own theory is that World War I broke out because the main peacekeeper among the European royalty, the Countess de Pourtales, had died a few months earlier.

    The Countess de Pourtales, who was one or the
    most beautiful among the many beautiful women of
    the court of Napoleon III, and is still one of the
    most celebrated of the grandes dames in the salons,
    which are the last footholds of French aristocracy,
    is a devoted wife and mother, a skilful financier and
    clever politician. It is said of her that “the Countess
    de Pourtales can wash her grandchild’s face or hem
    a towel just as easily as she can dictate terms for
    the peace of a kingdom or place an empire at her
    feet.”

    [Boston Daily Globe, Wed. July 13, 1892]

    In the Washington Post, May 11, 1914:

    KINGS AND QUEENS HER WARM FRIENDS
    Queen Alexandra, Empress Eugenie, and Princess Pauline Metternich are the three who will feel more deeply than any one else in the world the death of Countess Edmond de Pourtales, in her seventy-eighth year, last week in Paris.

    Although there are many thousands of women in the French capital bearing the title of countess, with more or less right, yet whenever one spoke of “la comtesse,” everyone knew that Mme. de Pourtales was meant thereby, just as if she had been the only dame of her rank in the gay metropolis.

    Queen Alexandra’s intimacy with Mme. de Pourtales dates back to 1863, when, as Princess of Wales, she first came to Paris as a bride. They have been lifelong friends, and it is to the wise and tactful counsel of the countess in those days that Queen Alexandra, a much younger woman is indebted for her marvelous grace and elegance in dress. Queen Alexandra never dreamed of passing through Paris without visiting Mme. de Pourtales at her beautiful home in the Rue Tronchet, and King Edward was also devoted to her…

    She was Countess Mélanie Renouard de Bussière, wife of Count Edmond de Pourtalès. She was from Alsace-Lorraine.
    http://www.chateau-pourtales.eu/en/History

  17. @Lot
    “ I now fear the moment when Xi Jinping will look better than our own leaders”

    We can’t shut down illegal migration at our border, we sure aren’t going to be enforcing massive quarantines like the Chinese are.

    We still don’t have a China travel ban!

    In 2012 I was refused entry to Hong Kong because I’d been in Brasil during the previous few months, and hadn’t had yellow fever & malaria immunizations (because I hadn’t travelled to any endemic zones). Strangely, there were no protests against the racist Chinese policies at the time.

    • Replies: @Jake Barnes
    Did you volunteer your travel history or did they just happen to notice a stamp? I’ve flown into HKIA probably 40 times and never get asked anything (except occasionally asking if I’m arriving to work since my work visa expired long ago).
  18. Communist Andromeda Strain:

    Chinese Netizens and Expert Suspect Wuhan Bioresearch Lab Is the Source of the Coronavirus

    …Wu also disclosed that some biolabs in China are very poorly regulated.

    “…Some cut up the laboratory pigs and took the meat home to eat. I know this happened at Beijing 301 Hospital’s spine surgery lab. Worst of all, some laboratory animals were sold to wet markets as wild-caught animals for profit,” he wrote.

    …Xu cited a news report about a lawsuit against biologist Li Ning.

    Li is an academician of China Engineering Academy, and a former professor at China Agricultural University. The judgment in Li’s case…stated that between 2008 and 2012, Li’s lab sold experimental pigs, cows, and milk to local markets.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
    FWIW, that link is from New Tang Dynasty news, which is affiliated with the Falun Gong movement. The Falun Gong is said to have ties to the CIA and NED (National Endowment for Democracy), which uses Falun Gong media outlets like New Tang Dynasty and The Epoch Times to promote anti Chinese communist regime messaging.
    , @El Dato

    Chinese Netizens and Expert Suspect Wuhan Bioresearch Lab Is the Source of the Coronavirus
     
    Vague rumors by vague "people". "Experts" and far worse, "Netizens" (what is that anyway? A C.H.U.D.?) suddenly coming out of the woodwork to propose dodgy, but newspaper-selling ideas? Not legit.

    As if intermittent outbreaks needed a bioresearch lab.

    This particular coronavirus was practically listed in some database a year yearlier. It's not new.

    Just keep a stock of whiskey to get through and ya will be fine.
  19. Maybe in the long run the Russian bond market is efficient; but in the long run the Czar is dead.

    • LOL: Achmed E. Newman
  20. @Kratoklastes

    There’s two kinds of people in this world… people who understand epidemiology and people who are scared of Coronavirus.
     
    FIFYA.

    Every time the northern flu season generates this 'Pestilence Armageddon' media-hysteric horse-shit, a bunch of scaredy-cat gullible innumerate 'tards get shown a chart of eʸ and think that means everyone in the world will be infected in t = f(y).

    There is nothing in the data for coronavirus that is worrisome.

    I fetch the data every day (there are now plenty of repositories with good APIs) and look at it every day just to confirm my prior.

    To be clear, my prior is that it's a typical northern-Flu-Season hysteria being ginned up by the media and government - like SARS, H1N1, Chikungunya, 'grippe aviare' and so forth. All touted as potential existential threats - all turned out to be damp squibs.

    Then again, nobody ever got their government sinecure/quango/boondoggle extended by crying "No Wolf!" or "The Sky Is Not Falling".

    .

    Almost nobody on the planet would be happier than me if this turned out to cut a massive swathe through the billions of dumbfounded dipshits that infest major cities: I have long said that a Black Death would be a nice purgative. Harsh, but I think you'll agree, fair.

    But this pissweak pathogen is not it.

    Humanity is well overdue for a genuine "middle finger" from Nature's panoply of greeblies: the irresponsible over-use of antibiotics, anti-retrovirals and disinfectants in the mid-late 20th century was like humanity tasking evolution with selectively strengthening its mechanisms to fuck humans up.

    This is not that. It's nowhere near that.

    A month after the first identified 'outbreak', a densely-populated city of 20 million has roughly 100K cases (many of which will be false positives): the deaths have been almost universally associated with advanced age, comorbidities, or both.

    That is fucking pissweak. Nature can do better. No - Nature must do better in order to be taken seriously.

    .

    Compare pissweak coronavirus to what swine flu did to the Chinese pig population in 2019: if the epidemiology is to be believed, it was responsible for the death of 55% of China's pig herd in less than 6 months.

    ASF wasn't 'taking off' elderly pigs (no such thing in Chinese factory-farms), or just pigs with dicky tickers or dodgy livers. It was fucking up entire herds - as I understand it, the death toll from the pathogen itself was greater than the 'prophylactic' slaughter.

    May2019 the death toll was 1 million; by December 2019 it was 100 million.

    Worse still: it was almost certainly spread deliberately.

    Tangentially, it's yet more evidence that organised international terrrrrrism is a fabrication.

    The International Fraternity of Butthurt Arabs could very easily acquire a pathogen like ASF and distribute it in US industrial farms - it is one of 100 easy plots that they could hatch if they were an adversary worth the name (or if they existed).

    Likewise, they have failed to perpetrate widespread pylloxera in the Napa Valley etc. Why not, given that it would be a high-yield, low-cost, impossible-to-prevent action?

    Answer: because there is no such thing as organised global terrrrrrism - it's a media and government-created boogeyman.

    Just like coronavirus.

    .

    When this horse-shit is dropped like a hot potato the moment the Northern Spring starts in earnest, I will be certain to come back to this and tell you I told you so. Not terribly sporting, but it is what it is.

    When this horse-shit is dropped like a hot potato the moment the Northern Spring starts in earnest, I will be certain to come back to this and tell you I told you so. Not terribly sporting, but it is what it is.

    March is a little over a week away, the official start of Spring is a month away.

    Get ready for Dow 32k!

  21. @Kratoklastes

    There’s two kinds of people in this world… people who understand epidemiology and people who are scared of Coronavirus.
     
    FIFYA.

    Every time the northern flu season generates this 'Pestilence Armageddon' media-hysteric horse-shit, a bunch of scaredy-cat gullible innumerate 'tards get shown a chart of eʸ and think that means everyone in the world will be infected in t = f(y).

    There is nothing in the data for coronavirus that is worrisome.

    I fetch the data every day (there are now plenty of repositories with good APIs) and look at it every day just to confirm my prior.

    To be clear, my prior is that it's a typical northern-Flu-Season hysteria being ginned up by the media and government - like SARS, H1N1, Chikungunya, 'grippe aviare' and so forth. All touted as potential existential threats - all turned out to be damp squibs.

    Then again, nobody ever got their government sinecure/quango/boondoggle extended by crying "No Wolf!" or "The Sky Is Not Falling".

    .

    Almost nobody on the planet would be happier than me if this turned out to cut a massive swathe through the billions of dumbfounded dipshits that infest major cities: I have long said that a Black Death would be a nice purgative. Harsh, but I think you'll agree, fair.

    But this pissweak pathogen is not it.

    Humanity is well overdue for a genuine "middle finger" from Nature's panoply of greeblies: the irresponsible over-use of antibiotics, anti-retrovirals and disinfectants in the mid-late 20th century was like humanity tasking evolution with selectively strengthening its mechanisms to fuck humans up.

    This is not that. It's nowhere near that.

    A month after the first identified 'outbreak', a densely-populated city of 20 million has roughly 100K cases (many of which will be false positives): the deaths have been almost universally associated with advanced age, comorbidities, or both.

    That is fucking pissweak. Nature can do better. No - Nature must do better in order to be taken seriously.

    .

    Compare pissweak coronavirus to what swine flu did to the Chinese pig population in 2019: if the epidemiology is to be believed, it was responsible for the death of 55% of China's pig herd in less than 6 months.

    ASF wasn't 'taking off' elderly pigs (no such thing in Chinese factory-farms), or just pigs with dicky tickers or dodgy livers. It was fucking up entire herds - as I understand it, the death toll from the pathogen itself was greater than the 'prophylactic' slaughter.

    May2019 the death toll was 1 million; by December 2019 it was 100 million.

    Worse still: it was almost certainly spread deliberately.

    Tangentially, it's yet more evidence that organised international terrrrrrism is a fabrication.

    The International Fraternity of Butthurt Arabs could very easily acquire a pathogen like ASF and distribute it in US industrial farms - it is one of 100 easy plots that they could hatch if they were an adversary worth the name (or if they existed).

    Likewise, they have failed to perpetrate widespread pylloxera in the Napa Valley etc. Why not, given that it would be a high-yield, low-cost, impossible-to-prevent action?

    Answer: because there is no such thing as organised global terrrrrrism - it's a media and government-created boogeyman.

    Just like coronavirus.

    .

    When this horse-shit is dropped like a hot potato the moment the Northern Spring starts in earnest, I will be certain to come back to this and tell you I told you so. Not terribly sporting, but it is what it is.

    So you think China shut down its economy over the flu? Okay.

    • Agree: Louis Renault
    • Replies: @Smithsonian_6

    So you think China shut down its economy over the flu? Okay.
     
    Border observers in South Korea have reported that the North Koreans are burning hundreds of bodies.
    The North Korean health minister appears on TV every evening to confirm that they have no cases of COVID-19.

    I report, you decide.
    , @CAL2
    That's what the "Don't worry, it's just another flu hysteria" crowd ignore. Do you think China would care if 30K old people caught some new flu bug and died? Sure it would be a pain with sick people. But overall, they would shrug their shoulders and go on just like the rest of the world does every flu season. China is worried enough that they've damaged their economy.

    Also, who believes any gov't stats, especially those out of China?
  22. Anonymous[139] • Disclaimer says:
    @Hippopotamusdrome
    Communist Andromeda Strain:

    Chinese Netizens and Expert Suspect Wuhan Bioresearch Lab Is the Source of the Coronavirus

    ...Wu also disclosed that some biolabs in China are very poorly regulated.

    “...Some cut up the laboratory pigs and took the meat home to eat. I know this happened at Beijing 301 Hospital’s spine surgery lab. Worst of all, some laboratory animals were sold to wet markets as wild-caught animals for profit,” he wrote.

    ...Xu cited a news report about a lawsuit against biologist Li Ning.

    Li is an academician of China Engineering Academy, and a former professor at China Agricultural University. The judgment in Li’s case...stated that between 2008 and 2012, Li’s lab sold experimental pigs, cows, and milk to local markets.

     

    FWIW, that link is from New Tang Dynasty news, which is affiliated with the Falun Gong movement. The Falun Gong is said to have ties to the CIA and NED (National Endowment for Democracy), which uses Falun Gong media outlets like New Tang Dynasty and The Epoch Times to promote anti Chinese communist regime messaging.

    • Replies: @Jus' Sayin'...
    Thanks, Godfree!
    , @anonymous

    FWIW, that link is from New Tang Dynasty news, which is affiliated with the Falun Gong movement. The Falun Gong is said to have ties to the CIA and NED (National Endowment for Democracy), which uses Falun Gong media outlets like New Tang Dynasty and The Epoch Times to promote anti Chinese communist regime messaging.
     
    You may be right that NTD is a CIA/NED front.

    Nonetheless, the underlying post re COVID-19 in Chinese (reproduced in full on the NTD website) makes a number of highly technical and seemingly knowledgeable points (e.g. about abuses at Chinese research labs) that are either authentic or a very well-researched forgery.

  23. Deluded markets responding to TINA for zero negative rates.

  24. @Anon
    Sanders is in the age range where, if he catches Covid-19, he'd better watch out. He's elderly and he's had a heart attack, and is presumably taking heart medicine. There's already been information coming out of studies that you don't want to be an elderly person with a heart condition if you catch this. Covid-19 can finish you off.

    Bloomberg's got an irregular heartbeat, and he's on meds for it. He may not do well, either.

    Biden's doc says Biden's got an irregular heartbeat, but he doesn't take medication to stabilize it! That guy . . . what a moron.

    Buttigieg had better watch out too. His immune system may also be compromised if he's spend too much time cruising for sex. A doctor once noted that one reason why the gay community got hit so hard by HIV is because gays' sexual habits had trashed their immune systems, exposing them to massive viral loads, right before HIV hit. Although HIV was a death sentence in its early days, some gays might have lived long enough to be able to take the new generation of HIV medicines.

    Obama smokes. He's not going to do well if he gets sick with Covid-19.

    As for Hillary and Pelosi, supposedly they're on meds for various conditions, too.

    The future is going to be interesting.

    Congressman Smith (Bernie Bro-Illinois)

  25. @reiner Tor
    So you think China shut down its economy over the flu? Okay.

    So you think China shut down its economy over the flu? Okay.

    Border observers in South Korea have reported that the North Koreans are burning hundreds of bodies.
    The North Korean health minister appears on TV every evening to confirm that they have no cases of COVID-19.

    I report, you decide.

    • Replies: @Hhsiii
    Aren’t they always burning hundreds of bodies in North Korea?
    , @El Dato

    Border observers in South Korea have reported that the North Koreans are burning hundreds of bodies.
     
    We absolutely need this for "Apocalyptica II: Deploralyptica".

    Russian imperial bond yields, for example, were absolutely stable through July until the last week of the month, even though Communists would be ruling Russia within 40 months.
     
    Also, it is time for a repost at 51:30

    https://youtu.be/FTupV8o3mW4?t=3102
  26. @Lot
    I’ve been following coronavirus closer than any news story since the 2016 election.

    A few signs it could be very bad:

    1 or 2 superspreaders infected 600+ people on a cruise ship

    1 person spread it to 200+ people in one Korean city

    With these two credible non-Chinese sources showing the ability of single people to superspread, and likely 100k infected people fleeing Wuhan (or passing through because it is a major train hub), you’d expect similar stories all over China.

    15% of the people infected in the Dec 2019 and Jan 1-10 periods in Wuhan in one study died.

    Those dystopian nightmare cell phone videos of Chinese soldiers and police with facemasks beating and dragging people away on the street. If it were just a couple I might think anecdotes or fakes. But I’ve seen dozens.

    Those built in a week Chinese “hospitals” are just giant steel hangers full of hospital beds crammed together. If you got sent to one with just a regular head cold or flu, the chance of a corona infection must be over 75%.

    TomTom has realtime traffic stats for about 15 major Chinese cities. All of them show car travel is down about 80%. And of course subway and bus travel would be down even more. You can’t shut down most of the world’s 2nd largest economy like this for months without a worldwide recession. Pollution trackers also show that industrial activity has nearly stopped.

    Chinese “public safety” brigades (they used to be called bao an, but I think they have a different name now) beat and drag people all the time, virus or not. It only looks more menacing now because they’re wearing masks.

    Coronavirus is real, and it’s bad, but I doubt the fatality rate would be as high here in the US as it is in China. For starters, Americans know better than to put their faith in Chinese medicine and associated superstitious quackery, whereas Chinese still genuinely believe in that stuff. We’re also way cleaner than Chinese, who don’t even bother washing their hands in restaurant washrooms, let alone hospitals.

    That said, I hope I don’t have to take my chances with this virus. I’ve already had enough nasty infections, including a bout of viral pneumonia (contracted in China) and the swine flu, to know how unpleasant they can be.

    I just hope everyone learns the proper lesson from this, which is that China’s progress toward modernity is a mile wide and an inch deep.

    • Thanks: Lot
    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    China still has antibiotics, probably. Secondary bacterial infections might be worse than the virus itself, after global drug producer supply chains get disrupted, and we'll run out of antibiotics.

    Chinese smoke a lot more, have air pollution and very high population densities. So any respiratory disease epidemic is bound to be worse there. But they still have a functional world around them.
    , @The Wild Geese Howard

    I just hope everyone learns the proper lesson from this, which is that China’s progress toward modernity is a mile wide and an inch deep.
     
    Yup.

    When comes to basic hygiene, proper food handling, eating proper food, and the germ theory of disease, the collective Chinese IQ is about 0, maybe 5 on a good day.
  27. @Dave Pinsen
    It was cheap to hedge against market risk last week.

    But a bigger risk may be a shortage of medicine and medical equipment due to supply chain disruptions in China. Ultimately, the coronavirus may do more to bring manufacturing back to the U.S. than Trump's tariffs. It will certainly complement them.

    But a bigger risk may be a shortage of medicine and medical equipment due to supply chain disruptions in China.

    Great point, we need to get the production of key medicines and medical supplies back to America.

    • Replies: @YetAnotherAnon
    If Chinese pharma is anything like Indian (and it may be, remember the baby milk with dioxins?), it should never have been offshored.

    https://fortune.com/2013/05/15/dirty-medicine/

    A pediatrician prescribed Ranbaxy's version of amoxiclav, a powerful antibiotic. For three scary days, his son's 102° fever persisted, despite the medicine. Finally, the pediatrician changed the prescription to the brand-name antibiotic made by GlaxoSmithKline (GSK). Within a day, his fever disappeared. Thakur hadn't thought about it much before. Now he took the boy in his arms and resolved not to give his family any more Ranbaxy drugs until he knew the truth.

    What Thakur unearthed over the next months would form some of the most devastating allegations ever made about the conduct of a drug company. His information would lead Ranbaxy into a multiyear regulatory battle with the FDA, and into the crosshairs of a Justice Department investigation that, almost nine years later, has finally come to a resolution.

    On May 13, Ranbaxy pleaded guilty to seven federal criminal counts of selling adulterated drugs with intent to defraud, failing to report that its drugs didn't meet specifications, and making intentionally false statements to the government. Ranbaxy agreed to pay $500 million in fines, forfeitures, and penalties -- the most ever levied against a generic-drug company. (No current or former Ranbaxy executives were charged with crimes.) Thakur's confidential whistleblower complaint, which he filed in 2007 and which describes how the company fabricated and falsified data to win FDA approvals, was also unsealed. Under federal whistleblower law, Thakur will receive more than $48 million as part of the resolution of the case.

    Fortune's account of what occurred inside Ranbaxy and how the FDA responded to it raises serious questions about whether our government can effectively safeguard a drug supply that last year was 84% generic, according to the IMS Institute for Healthcare Informatics, much of that manufactured in distant places. More than 80% of active pharmaceutical ingredients for all U.S. drugs now come from overseas, as do 40% of finished pills and capsules.
     
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ranbaxy_Laboratories#Controversies

    In 2019 author Katherine Eban published Bottle of Lies, an in-depth investigation of Ranbaxy. In addition to the incidents described above, Eban describes internal struggles within the FDA as investigators who might have shut down Ranbaxy were overruled due to pressure to increase the supply of cheap generic drugs.
     
  28. @Bill P
    Chinese "public safety" brigades (they used to be called bao an, but I think they have a different name now) beat and drag people all the time, virus or not. It only looks more menacing now because they're wearing masks.

    Coronavirus is real, and it's bad, but I doubt the fatality rate would be as high here in the US as it is in China. For starters, Americans know better than to put their faith in Chinese medicine and associated superstitious quackery, whereas Chinese still genuinely believe in that stuff. We're also way cleaner than Chinese, who don't even bother washing their hands in restaurant washrooms, let alone hospitals.

    That said, I hope I don't have to take my chances with this virus. I've already had enough nasty infections, including a bout of viral pneumonia (contracted in China) and the swine flu, to know how unpleasant they can be.

    I just hope everyone learns the proper lesson from this, which is that China's progress toward modernity is a mile wide and an inch deep.

    China still has antibiotics, probably. Secondary bacterial infections might be worse than the virus itself, after global drug producer supply chains get disrupted, and we’ll run out of antibiotics.

    Chinese smoke a lot more, have air pollution and very high population densities. So any respiratory disease epidemic is bound to be worse there. But they still have a functional world around them.

    • Replies: @LondonBob
    Asians also have ACE2 receptors in abundance, Europeans not so much. None of the British infected have had anything but mild symptoms.
  29. @R.G. Camara
    Perhaps it's more than stock markets aren't as "panicky" as media might have us believe?

    It's really annoying when the market has a rise or a dip and some pundit claims its because "X" happened simultaneously. That's it; it's all correlation, no proof of causation, and yet economic history is full of writings claiming the correlation proves causation.

    Financial pundits are almost as useless as political ones, and for the same reasons.

    Yes I also heard today’s pullback referred to as due to Corona, but also because of Bernie Sanders doing well. Or because it’s overdue for a correction.

  30. @Smithsonian_6

    So you think China shut down its economy over the flu? Okay.
     
    Border observers in South Korea have reported that the North Koreans are burning hundreds of bodies.
    The North Korean health minister appears on TV every evening to confirm that they have no cases of COVID-19.

    I report, you decide.

    Aren’t they always burning hundreds of bodies in North Korea?

    • LOL: Alden
    • Replies: @Smithsonian_6

    Aren’t they always burning hundreds of bodies in North Korea?
     
    I expect so, but the border guards didn't say '..... as usual', at the end of their report.
  31. Central banks have been pouring money in to the markets keeping equities levitated. Equity markets are dumb money, gold has shot up, bonds and commodities have already reacted. I still remember having an interview in 07 where we talked about the failure of the Bear Stearns subprime mortgage funds, that was the start of the GFC, but it still tooks months for it to register with the financial community, let alone the general public, and the panic to really start.

  32. @reiner Tor
    China still has antibiotics, probably. Secondary bacterial infections might be worse than the virus itself, after global drug producer supply chains get disrupted, and we'll run out of antibiotics.

    Chinese smoke a lot more, have air pollution and very high population densities. So any respiratory disease epidemic is bound to be worse there. But they still have a functional world around them.

    Asians also have ACE2 receptors in abundance, Europeans not so much. None of the British infected have had anything but mild symptoms.

  33. Anonymous[163] • Disclaimer says:

    Reminds me of all the blather and bullshit surrounding Brexit.

    If, hypothetically, Brexit results in a full scale EU trade embargo of the UK – which *definitely* will NOT happen, under any possible circumstance – then, I’m pretty sure the UK could substitute EU production from international markets, if not fulfill the loss internally.

    But, if Chinese imports were cut off, I’m fairly certain that the impact would be devastating, both in terms of industry and the consumer market. Empty shelves and seized up machinery would be the order of the day – and damned quickly.
    Such is the scale of British dependence on China for industrial and consumer production.

  34. If this reveals the dangers of offshoring your supply chain and brings manufacturing back to the US, it could be a good thing long-term.

    • Agree: Rob, Achmed E. Newman
    • Replies: @Desiderius
    As long as Keynes wasn't too literally right.
    , @Anonymous
    Offshoring of pharmaceuticals has many negative aspects, one being that the offshore vendors apparently feel that they can control how their products are used, e.g., states can not get hold of drugs for executions. Another is that eventually each pharmaceutical gets to be a single source item due to economies of scale, and a disaster can throttle the world supply.

    How to make US pharma houses make a broad spectrum of basic pharmaceuticals is a question I do not know the answer to. Tariffs could be a problem especially as they might have to be quite high to have any effect.

    I have long held that the tax code should have "manufacturing gains" wherein domestic manufacturing profits would be taxed at a lower rate. It should be lower even than "capital gains" but there should be some strings attached shitty bottom feeder businesses should be less eligible than high quality ones genuinely positively impacting the economy.
  35. @RichardTaylor

    But a bigger risk may be a shortage of medicine and medical equipment due to supply chain disruptions in China.
     
    Great point, we need to get the production of key medicines and medical supplies back to America.

    If Chinese pharma is anything like Indian (and it may be, remember the baby milk with dioxins?), it should never have been offshored.

    https://fortune.com/2013/05/15/dirty-medicine/

    A pediatrician prescribed Ranbaxy’s version of amoxiclav, a powerful antibiotic. For three scary days, his son’s 102° fever persisted, despite the medicine. Finally, the pediatrician changed the prescription to the brand-name antibiotic made by GlaxoSmithKline (GSK). Within a day, his fever disappeared. Thakur hadn’t thought about it much before. Now he took the boy in his arms and resolved not to give his family any more Ranbaxy drugs until he knew the truth.

    What Thakur unearthed over the next months would form some of the most devastating allegations ever made about the conduct of a drug company. His information would lead Ranbaxy into a multiyear regulatory battle with the FDA, and into the crosshairs of a Justice Department investigation that, almost nine years later, has finally come to a resolution.

    On May 13, Ranbaxy pleaded guilty to seven federal criminal counts of selling adulterated drugs with intent to defraud, failing to report that its drugs didn’t meet specifications, and making intentionally false statements to the government. Ranbaxy agreed to pay $500 million in fines, forfeitures, and penalties — the most ever levied against a generic-drug company. (No current or former Ranbaxy executives were charged with crimes.) Thakur’s confidential whistleblower complaint, which he filed in 2007 and which describes how the company fabricated and falsified data to win FDA approvals, was also unsealed. Under federal whistleblower law, Thakur will receive more than $48 million as part of the resolution of the case.

    Fortune’s account of what occurred inside Ranbaxy and how the FDA responded to it raises serious questions about whether our government can effectively safeguard a drug supply that last year was 84% generic, according to the IMS Institute for Healthcare Informatics, much of that manufactured in distant places. More than 80% of active pharmaceutical ingredients for all U.S. drugs now come from overseas, as do 40% of finished pills and capsules.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ranbaxy_Laboratories#Controversies

    In 2019 author Katherine Eban published Bottle of Lies, an in-depth investigation of Ranbaxy. In addition to the incidents described above, Eban describes internal struggles within the FDA as investigators who might have shut down Ranbaxy were overruled due to pressure to increase the supply of cheap generic drugs.

    • Agree: RichardTaylor
  36. Anonymous[367] • Disclaimer says:
    @Kratoklastes

    There’s two kinds of people in this world… people who understand epidemiology and people who are scared of Coronavirus.
     
    FIFYA.

    Every time the northern flu season generates this 'Pestilence Armageddon' media-hysteric horse-shit, a bunch of scaredy-cat gullible innumerate 'tards get shown a chart of eʸ and think that means everyone in the world will be infected in t = f(y).

    There is nothing in the data for coronavirus that is worrisome.

    I fetch the data every day (there are now plenty of repositories with good APIs) and look at it every day just to confirm my prior.

    To be clear, my prior is that it's a typical northern-Flu-Season hysteria being ginned up by the media and government - like SARS, H1N1, Chikungunya, 'grippe aviare' and so forth. All touted as potential existential threats - all turned out to be damp squibs.

    Then again, nobody ever got their government sinecure/quango/boondoggle extended by crying "No Wolf!" or "The Sky Is Not Falling".

    .

    Almost nobody on the planet would be happier than me if this turned out to cut a massive swathe through the billions of dumbfounded dipshits that infest major cities: I have long said that a Black Death would be a nice purgative. Harsh, but I think you'll agree, fair.

    But this pissweak pathogen is not it.

    Humanity is well overdue for a genuine "middle finger" from Nature's panoply of greeblies: the irresponsible over-use of antibiotics, anti-retrovirals and disinfectants in the mid-late 20th century was like humanity tasking evolution with selectively strengthening its mechanisms to fuck humans up.

    This is not that. It's nowhere near that.

    A month after the first identified 'outbreak', a densely-populated city of 20 million has roughly 100K cases (many of which will be false positives): the deaths have been almost universally associated with advanced age, comorbidities, or both.

    That is fucking pissweak. Nature can do better. No - Nature must do better in order to be taken seriously.

    .

    Compare pissweak coronavirus to what swine flu did to the Chinese pig population in 2019: if the epidemiology is to be believed, it was responsible for the death of 55% of China's pig herd in less than 6 months.

    ASF wasn't 'taking off' elderly pigs (no such thing in Chinese factory-farms), or just pigs with dicky tickers or dodgy livers. It was fucking up entire herds - as I understand it, the death toll from the pathogen itself was greater than the 'prophylactic' slaughter.

    May2019 the death toll was 1 million; by December 2019 it was 100 million.

    Worse still: it was almost certainly spread deliberately.

    Tangentially, it's yet more evidence that organised international terrrrrrism is a fabrication.

    The International Fraternity of Butthurt Arabs could very easily acquire a pathogen like ASF and distribute it in US industrial farms - it is one of 100 easy plots that they could hatch if they were an adversary worth the name (or if they existed).

    Likewise, they have failed to perpetrate widespread pylloxera in the Napa Valley etc. Why not, given that it would be a high-yield, low-cost, impossible-to-prevent action?

    Answer: because there is no such thing as organised global terrrrrrism - it's a media and government-created boogeyman.

    Just like coronavirus.

    .

    When this horse-shit is dropped like a hot potato the moment the Northern Spring starts in earnest, I will be certain to come back to this and tell you I told you so. Not terribly sporting, but it is what it is.

    Has anyone noticed it mainly kills Asians? I read somewhere that East Asians have more ACE2 receptors in the lungs and results in their lungs being overwhelmed by this specific virus. SARS and this coronavirus adhere to those ACE2 receptors. Other ethnic groups don’t have as many ACE2 receptors. Something for us in HBD world to think about. Different genes, different immune system response…

    Light research of SARS from 2002-2003 shows only 2 Caucasians died from it. One was an Italian doctor who treated the first cases in Asia and he technically died from a heart attack.

    The Italian victim announced this morning only tested positive for the initial simple Coronavirus swab test, definitive blood tests are not back yet. And he was aged 78 and may have had pre-existing conditions.

    Something to contemplate. Any epidemiologists out there? I don’t think it’s a biological weapon, that’s a bridge too far. But I’d love some research on SARS and this new novel virus to test this thesis if it kills certain group more quickly due to genetic underlying reasons.

    • Replies: @Smithsonian_6

    Has anyone noticed it mainly kills Asians? I read somewhere that East Asians have more ACE2 receptors in the lungs and results in their lungs being overwhelmed by this specific virus
     
    Only because the outbreak started there and is well ahead of the rest of the world. I definitely would not count on that continuing.
  37. A friend of mine is a pilot for United Airlines. Since flights to China have been stopped completely, flight volume has decreased significantly. He can no longer pick up extra flights past what his guaranteed flight hours are, as pilots who were assigned to that region scramble to find alternative flights of their own. He speculates that up to 2000 pilots could end up being furloughed, just with United. So it appears the coronavirus issue is going to have effects in quite a few markets.

  38. as to the WWI analogy, I cannot explain what caused that war and why it continued. Honestly, was it Germany against all the other European powers and Russia? Why did Great Britain get involved to the point of years long trench warfare?

    • Replies: @JMcG
    I’ve been studying it for 25 years now, and I’m no better off than you.
    , @El Dato
    The game matrix says that to disengage once engaged, everyone has to agree to stop the bullshit in good faith and at the same time. This is a rare occurence.
    , @Desiderius
    Think of it (WWI and WWII as one war) as the European Civil War or as the second Thirty Years War.

    Why didn't the UK get involved in our Civil War as the Confederacy expected, indeed counted on? It was a close run thing. The Brits got where they were by strangling rival powers in the crib after they themselves got the upper hand on the Sun King. If Germany had succesfully created an EU in 1914 they would have quickly gained supremacy on the Brits, who had been declining is relative terms for half a century.

    Brit dominance in colonial wars against outgunned natives made them overconfident that taking out the Kaiser would be just as quick and easy. Germany's industrial/technological power gave them power orders of magnitude above their numbers just as ours does today when unconstrained by lawyers and the like.
  39. Blame Trump on US public not being better informed on threat of Corona. US should be overseas treating people. Simply so our medical professionals can gain first hand knowledge of how to treat the disease and to learn of how deadly it is.

  40. @Kratoklastes

    There’s two kinds of people in this world… people who understand epidemiology and people who are scared of Coronavirus.
     
    FIFYA.

    Every time the northern flu season generates this 'Pestilence Armageddon' media-hysteric horse-shit, a bunch of scaredy-cat gullible innumerate 'tards get shown a chart of eʸ and think that means everyone in the world will be infected in t = f(y).

    There is nothing in the data for coronavirus that is worrisome.

    I fetch the data every day (there are now plenty of repositories with good APIs) and look at it every day just to confirm my prior.

    To be clear, my prior is that it's a typical northern-Flu-Season hysteria being ginned up by the media and government - like SARS, H1N1, Chikungunya, 'grippe aviare' and so forth. All touted as potential existential threats - all turned out to be damp squibs.

    Then again, nobody ever got their government sinecure/quango/boondoggle extended by crying "No Wolf!" or "The Sky Is Not Falling".

    .

    Almost nobody on the planet would be happier than me if this turned out to cut a massive swathe through the billions of dumbfounded dipshits that infest major cities: I have long said that a Black Death would be a nice purgative. Harsh, but I think you'll agree, fair.

    But this pissweak pathogen is not it.

    Humanity is well overdue for a genuine "middle finger" from Nature's panoply of greeblies: the irresponsible over-use of antibiotics, anti-retrovirals and disinfectants in the mid-late 20th century was like humanity tasking evolution with selectively strengthening its mechanisms to fuck humans up.

    This is not that. It's nowhere near that.

    A month after the first identified 'outbreak', a densely-populated city of 20 million has roughly 100K cases (many of which will be false positives): the deaths have been almost universally associated with advanced age, comorbidities, or both.

    That is fucking pissweak. Nature can do better. No - Nature must do better in order to be taken seriously.

    .

    Compare pissweak coronavirus to what swine flu did to the Chinese pig population in 2019: if the epidemiology is to be believed, it was responsible for the death of 55% of China's pig herd in less than 6 months.

    ASF wasn't 'taking off' elderly pigs (no such thing in Chinese factory-farms), or just pigs with dicky tickers or dodgy livers. It was fucking up entire herds - as I understand it, the death toll from the pathogen itself was greater than the 'prophylactic' slaughter.

    May2019 the death toll was 1 million; by December 2019 it was 100 million.

    Worse still: it was almost certainly spread deliberately.

    Tangentially, it's yet more evidence that organised international terrrrrrism is a fabrication.

    The International Fraternity of Butthurt Arabs could very easily acquire a pathogen like ASF and distribute it in US industrial farms - it is one of 100 easy plots that they could hatch if they were an adversary worth the name (or if they existed).

    Likewise, they have failed to perpetrate widespread pylloxera in the Napa Valley etc. Why not, given that it would be a high-yield, low-cost, impossible-to-prevent action?

    Answer: because there is no such thing as organised global terrrrrrism - it's a media and government-created boogeyman.

    Just like coronavirus.

    .

    When this horse-shit is dropped like a hot potato the moment the Northern Spring starts in earnest, I will be certain to come back to this and tell you I told you so. Not terribly sporting, but it is what it is.

    The virus was designed to fuck up the Chinese economy, not to kill hundreds of millions of people. And in that regard, it’s been very successful.

  41. I am already starting to wonder if the Coronavirus will still be around by summer. South Korea and Japan have hundreds of cases now, and if it lingers it will only get worse. Japan has got to be worried of the effect this is going to have on the Olympics.

  42. @reiner Tor
    So you think China shut down its economy over the flu? Okay.

    That’s what the “Don’t worry, it’s just another flu hysteria” crowd ignore. Do you think China would care if 30K old people caught some new flu bug and died? Sure it would be a pain with sick people. But overall, they would shrug their shoulders and go on just like the rest of the world does every flu season. China is worried enough that they’ve damaged their economy.

    Also, who believes any gov’t stats, especially those out of China?

  43. @Mr McKenna
    In 2012 I was refused entry to Hong Kong because I'd been in Brasil during the previous few months, and hadn't had yellow fever & malaria immunizations (because I hadn't travelled to any endemic zones). Strangely, there were no protests against the racist Chinese policies at the time.

    Did you volunteer your travel history or did they just happen to notice a stamp? I’ve flown into HKIA probably 40 times and never get asked anything (except occasionally asking if I’m arriving to work since my work visa expired long ago).

    • Replies: @Mr McKenna
    In my case I was warned off for this reason and never flew to HK in the first place. With your experience I'd probably have been more persistent. But I didn't want to risk the enormous cost of forfeiting business-class round-trip airline tickets, plus the fact that I'd then have to buy a last-minute ticket out of there.
  44. • Replies: @El Dato
    You are now being accused of being a Russian Troll!

    Russia isn’t only behind election hacking! They’re also trying to smear US over coronavirus … according to State Department

    US State Department officials are claiming Moscow is behind an internet campaign to blame the coronavirus on the US government.

    Without citing specific examples, officials told AFP [Graunshit, Yahoo) that the foreign nation is using “false personas” to spread conspiracy theories about the virus, including that the virus is the US’ attempt to “wage economic war on China” and that it could be a biological weapon deployed by the CIA to “spread anti-China messages.”

    The messages are apparently spread through thousands of online accounts, run by people and not bots, which post similar messages in multiple languages and can be “linked back to Russian proxies.” The unknown number of accounts all received “carte blanche” from the Russian government to say whatever they can to damage the US’ reputation [why not just sit still and let events develop then?], the report claims.

    Philip Reeker [the name goes wit hthe territory], the acting Assistant Secretary of State for Europe and Eurasia, says Russia’s intent in this loosely-detailed effort is to “undermine US institutions and alliances from within.” The State Department also blamed this campaign of “Russian talking points” for slower responses to the coronavirus in Africa and Asia. [ridiculous to 85-IQ persons even]

    All this information is supposedly gathered in a report by the Global Engagement Center (GCE) and seen by AFP. The State Department’s GCE has a sketchy history of being accused of spreading its own propaganda, like a $1.5 million program that was deployed to discredit any and all critics of Trump’s policies in Iran. The account @IranDisinfo was running smear campaigns against anyone, including journalists, who dared to challenge the president’s hawkish policies, despite the account supposedly being meant to only combat Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS) propaganda.
     
    People being given tax dollars to use up leather chairs, perform bullshit jobs, perform daily commutes in the DC area and be insufferable nuisances.
  45. @SFG
    If this reveals the dangers of offshoring your supply chain and brings manufacturing back to the US, it could be a good thing long-term.

    As long as Keynes wasn’t too literally right.

  46. @Lot
    “ I now fear the moment when Xi Jinping will look better than our own leaders”

    We can’t shut down illegal migration at our border, we sure aren’t going to be enforcing massive quarantines like the Chinese are.

    We still don’t have a China travel ban!

    We’ve been without leaders for several years, maybe decades.

  47. @R.G. Camara
    Perhaps it's more than stock markets aren't as "panicky" as media might have us believe?

    It's really annoying when the market has a rise or a dip and some pundit claims its because "X" happened simultaneously. That's it; it's all correlation, no proof of causation, and yet economic history is full of writings claiming the correlation proves causation.

    Financial pundits are almost as useless as political ones, and for the same reasons.

    That’s it; it’s all correlation, no proof of causation, and yet economic history is full of writings claiming the correlation proves causation.

    Right. Thank you for that one, Mr. Camara.

    It’s not only that there’s no theory behind their “technical trading” BS (more like seances with graphs), but do you notice that none of these financial pundits tell you IN THE MORNING that this or that stock, bond or exchange rate will go up or down because of what we all know is happening that day? Nope, they tell you in the evening, after the markets close. Missed it by THAT much!

    They do a great deal of after-the-fact explaining.

    • Agree: Old Prude
  48. @Anon
    Sanders is in the age range where, if he catches Covid-19, he'd better watch out. He's elderly and he's had a heart attack, and is presumably taking heart medicine. There's already been information coming out of studies that you don't want to be an elderly person with a heart condition if you catch this. Covid-19 can finish you off.

    Bloomberg's got an irregular heartbeat, and he's on meds for it. He may not do well, either.

    Biden's doc says Biden's got an irregular heartbeat, but he doesn't take medication to stabilize it! That guy . . . what a moron.

    Buttigieg had better watch out too. His immune system may also be compromised if he's spend too much time cruising for sex. A doctor once noted that one reason why the gay community got hit so hard by HIV is because gays' sexual habits had trashed their immune systems, exposing them to massive viral loads, right before HIV hit. Although HIV was a death sentence in its early days, some gays might have lived long enough to be able to take the new generation of HIV medicines.

    Obama smokes. He's not going to do well if he gets sick with Covid-19.

    As for Hillary and Pelosi, supposedly they're on meds for various conditions, too.

    The future is going to be interesting.

    I’m glad someone has finally found a silver lining in the coming Covid-19 pandemic.

  49. @Hhsiii
    Aren’t they always burning hundreds of bodies in North Korea?

    Aren’t they always burning hundreds of bodies in North Korea?

    I expect so, but the border guards didn’t say ‘….. as usual’, at the end of their report.

    • LOL: Hhsiii
  50. @Bill P
    Chinese "public safety" brigades (they used to be called bao an, but I think they have a different name now) beat and drag people all the time, virus or not. It only looks more menacing now because they're wearing masks.

    Coronavirus is real, and it's bad, but I doubt the fatality rate would be as high here in the US as it is in China. For starters, Americans know better than to put their faith in Chinese medicine and associated superstitious quackery, whereas Chinese still genuinely believe in that stuff. We're also way cleaner than Chinese, who don't even bother washing their hands in restaurant washrooms, let alone hospitals.

    That said, I hope I don't have to take my chances with this virus. I've already had enough nasty infections, including a bout of viral pneumonia (contracted in China) and the swine flu, to know how unpleasant they can be.

    I just hope everyone learns the proper lesson from this, which is that China's progress toward modernity is a mile wide and an inch deep.

    I just hope everyone learns the proper lesson from this, which is that China’s progress toward modernity is a mile wide and an inch deep.

    Yup.

    When comes to basic hygiene, proper food handling, eating proper food, and the germ theory of disease, the collective Chinese IQ is about 0, maybe 5 on a good day.

  51. @Kratoklastes

    There’s two kinds of people in this world… people who understand epidemiology and people who are scared of Coronavirus.
     
    FIFYA.

    Every time the northern flu season generates this 'Pestilence Armageddon' media-hysteric horse-shit, a bunch of scaredy-cat gullible innumerate 'tards get shown a chart of eʸ and think that means everyone in the world will be infected in t = f(y).

    There is nothing in the data for coronavirus that is worrisome.

    I fetch the data every day (there are now plenty of repositories with good APIs) and look at it every day just to confirm my prior.

    To be clear, my prior is that it's a typical northern-Flu-Season hysteria being ginned up by the media and government - like SARS, H1N1, Chikungunya, 'grippe aviare' and so forth. All touted as potential existential threats - all turned out to be damp squibs.

    Then again, nobody ever got their government sinecure/quango/boondoggle extended by crying "No Wolf!" or "The Sky Is Not Falling".

    .

    Almost nobody on the planet would be happier than me if this turned out to cut a massive swathe through the billions of dumbfounded dipshits that infest major cities: I have long said that a Black Death would be a nice purgative. Harsh, but I think you'll agree, fair.

    But this pissweak pathogen is not it.

    Humanity is well overdue for a genuine "middle finger" from Nature's panoply of greeblies: the irresponsible over-use of antibiotics, anti-retrovirals and disinfectants in the mid-late 20th century was like humanity tasking evolution with selectively strengthening its mechanisms to fuck humans up.

    This is not that. It's nowhere near that.

    A month after the first identified 'outbreak', a densely-populated city of 20 million has roughly 100K cases (many of which will be false positives): the deaths have been almost universally associated with advanced age, comorbidities, or both.

    That is fucking pissweak. Nature can do better. No - Nature must do better in order to be taken seriously.

    .

    Compare pissweak coronavirus to what swine flu did to the Chinese pig population in 2019: if the epidemiology is to be believed, it was responsible for the death of 55% of China's pig herd in less than 6 months.

    ASF wasn't 'taking off' elderly pigs (no such thing in Chinese factory-farms), or just pigs with dicky tickers or dodgy livers. It was fucking up entire herds - as I understand it, the death toll from the pathogen itself was greater than the 'prophylactic' slaughter.

    May2019 the death toll was 1 million; by December 2019 it was 100 million.

    Worse still: it was almost certainly spread deliberately.

    Tangentially, it's yet more evidence that organised international terrrrrrism is a fabrication.

    The International Fraternity of Butthurt Arabs could very easily acquire a pathogen like ASF and distribute it in US industrial farms - it is one of 100 easy plots that they could hatch if they were an adversary worth the name (or if they existed).

    Likewise, they have failed to perpetrate widespread pylloxera in the Napa Valley etc. Why not, given that it would be a high-yield, low-cost, impossible-to-prevent action?

    Answer: because there is no such thing as organised global terrrrrrism - it's a media and government-created boogeyman.

    Just like coronavirus.

    .

    When this horse-shit is dropped like a hot potato the moment the Northern Spring starts in earnest, I will be certain to come back to this and tell you I told you so. Not terribly sporting, but it is what it is.

    I spent the last fifteen years of my active career as an epidemiologist in my state’s department of public. Back in the 1980s I and a colleague developed a model that quite accurately predicted the eventual spread of HIV/AIDS, by dividing the population into infection pools, with transmission rates that differed within and between group and by stage of disease, a novel approach at the time. In my later career I was part of a team studying different drug addictions and the resulting morbidity and mortality as if they were infectious, chronic diseases.

    I know as well as anyone how difficult it is to predict the spread of a novel pathogen and the resulting mortality and morbidity. However, the patterns that are beginning to emerge from within China, from the quarantined cruise ship, and now from a growing number of widely scattered hot spots are extremely concerning. The apparent likelihood of a worldwide pandemic now appears to be much greater than it was even a week ago and the growth in potential threat level seems to be accelerating. A pandemic, should it occur, would be accompanied by severe social disruption and high mortality rates, due both to the disease itself and the pandemic’s broader impacts on society. It would likely be accompanied and followed by widespread and novel patterns of morbidity.

    I do not intend to write a jeremiad but neither would I scoff at the potential for a serious, possibly catastrophic, pandemic.

    • Agree: reiner Tor
    • Thanks: Desiderius
    • Replies: @Desiderius
    The only scoffers are sufferers of IQ poisoning.
  52. @Anonymous
    FWIW, that link is from New Tang Dynasty news, which is affiliated with the Falun Gong movement. The Falun Gong is said to have ties to the CIA and NED (National Endowment for Democracy), which uses Falun Gong media outlets like New Tang Dynasty and The Epoch Times to promote anti Chinese communist regime messaging.

    Thanks, Godfree!

    • Replies: @Lot
    Godfree has a new Unzer friend! Perfect for people who want Chinese propaganda, but with a heaping dose of rabid antisemitism and antiamericanism that the mild-mannered GR doesn’t seem to have in him.

    https://www.unz.com/pescobar/no-weapon-left-behind-the-american-hybrid-war-on-china/
  53. @Kratoklastes

    There’s two kinds of people in this world… people who understand epidemiology and people who are scared of Coronavirus.
     
    FIFYA.

    Every time the northern flu season generates this 'Pestilence Armageddon' media-hysteric horse-shit, a bunch of scaredy-cat gullible innumerate 'tards get shown a chart of eʸ and think that means everyone in the world will be infected in t = f(y).

    There is nothing in the data for coronavirus that is worrisome.

    I fetch the data every day (there are now plenty of repositories with good APIs) and look at it every day just to confirm my prior.

    To be clear, my prior is that it's a typical northern-Flu-Season hysteria being ginned up by the media and government - like SARS, H1N1, Chikungunya, 'grippe aviare' and so forth. All touted as potential existential threats - all turned out to be damp squibs.

    Then again, nobody ever got their government sinecure/quango/boondoggle extended by crying "No Wolf!" or "The Sky Is Not Falling".

    .

    Almost nobody on the planet would be happier than me if this turned out to cut a massive swathe through the billions of dumbfounded dipshits that infest major cities: I have long said that a Black Death would be a nice purgative. Harsh, but I think you'll agree, fair.

    But this pissweak pathogen is not it.

    Humanity is well overdue for a genuine "middle finger" from Nature's panoply of greeblies: the irresponsible over-use of antibiotics, anti-retrovirals and disinfectants in the mid-late 20th century was like humanity tasking evolution with selectively strengthening its mechanisms to fuck humans up.

    This is not that. It's nowhere near that.

    A month after the first identified 'outbreak', a densely-populated city of 20 million has roughly 100K cases (many of which will be false positives): the deaths have been almost universally associated with advanced age, comorbidities, or both.

    That is fucking pissweak. Nature can do better. No - Nature must do better in order to be taken seriously.

    .

    Compare pissweak coronavirus to what swine flu did to the Chinese pig population in 2019: if the epidemiology is to be believed, it was responsible for the death of 55% of China's pig herd in less than 6 months.

    ASF wasn't 'taking off' elderly pigs (no such thing in Chinese factory-farms), or just pigs with dicky tickers or dodgy livers. It was fucking up entire herds - as I understand it, the death toll from the pathogen itself was greater than the 'prophylactic' slaughter.

    May2019 the death toll was 1 million; by December 2019 it was 100 million.

    Worse still: it was almost certainly spread deliberately.

    Tangentially, it's yet more evidence that organised international terrrrrrism is a fabrication.

    The International Fraternity of Butthurt Arabs could very easily acquire a pathogen like ASF and distribute it in US industrial farms - it is one of 100 easy plots that they could hatch if they were an adversary worth the name (or if they existed).

    Likewise, they have failed to perpetrate widespread pylloxera in the Napa Valley etc. Why not, given that it would be a high-yield, low-cost, impossible-to-prevent action?

    Answer: because there is no such thing as organised global terrrrrrism - it's a media and government-created boogeyman.

    Just like coronavirus.

    .

    When this horse-shit is dropped like a hot potato the moment the Northern Spring starts in earnest, I will be certain to come back to this and tell you I told you so. Not terribly sporting, but it is what it is.

    Too stupid to understand garbage in, garbage out. Also wtf does an API have to do with looking at this data?!

  54. @Hippopotamusdrome
    Communist Andromeda Strain:

    Chinese Netizens and Expert Suspect Wuhan Bioresearch Lab Is the Source of the Coronavirus

    ...Wu also disclosed that some biolabs in China are very poorly regulated.

    “...Some cut up the laboratory pigs and took the meat home to eat. I know this happened at Beijing 301 Hospital’s spine surgery lab. Worst of all, some laboratory animals were sold to wet markets as wild-caught animals for profit,” he wrote.

    ...Xu cited a news report about a lawsuit against biologist Li Ning.

    Li is an academician of China Engineering Academy, and a former professor at China Agricultural University. The judgment in Li’s case...stated that between 2008 and 2012, Li’s lab sold experimental pigs, cows, and milk to local markets.

     

    Chinese Netizens and Expert Suspect Wuhan Bioresearch Lab Is the Source of the Coronavirus

    Vague rumors by vague “people”. “Experts” and far worse, “Netizens” (what is that anyway? A C.H.U.D.?) suddenly coming out of the woodwork to propose dodgy, but newspaper-selling ideas? Not legit.

    As if intermittent outbreaks needed a bioresearch lab.

    This particular coronavirus was practically listed in some database a year yearlier. It’s not new.

    Just keep a stock of whiskey to get through and ya will be fine.

  55. @Smithsonian_6

    So you think China shut down its economy over the flu? Okay.
     
    Border observers in South Korea have reported that the North Koreans are burning hundreds of bodies.
    The North Korean health minister appears on TV every evening to confirm that they have no cases of COVID-19.

    I report, you decide.

    Border observers in South Korea have reported that the North Koreans are burning hundreds of bodies.

    We absolutely need this for “Apocalyptica II: Deploralyptica”.

    Russian imperial bond yields, for example, were absolutely stable through July until the last week of the month, even though Communists would be ruling Russia within 40 months.

    Also, it is time for a repost at 51:30

  56. I give the Chinese credit that for all their hard work their lab guys realized *this* virus was a failure–it infected Chinese people rather than just targetting non-Chinese people.

    But then selling off the infected pigs to the local market … uh …

    IQ isn’t everything.

    (Of course the question is … do they have the version that works per spec?)

  57. So, I wasted a few hours of my life reading the Dean Koontz novel that predicted a bioweapon from Wuhan:

    Wuhan-400 Coronavirus: 1981 Novel Predicts Virus Origin

    https://www.zerohedge.com/geopolitical/wuhan-400-coronavirus-1981-novel-predicts-virus-origin

    In a bizarre coincidence, a 1981 fictional novel The Eyes of Darkness by Dean Koontz predicts a Coronavirus like outbreak and its origin. The book talks about how the virus called Wuhan-400, was developed in military labs around the Chinese city of Wuhan from where it got its name. The top secret information of the Biological weapons Program is later acquired by US intelligence from a Chinese defector.

    It’s really not a great book, and I regret having invested the time. The virus is simply a Macguffin that shows up at the end to explain why certain people mysteriously disappeared and one character has developed psychic powers that serve as a deus ex machina which facilitate the final two or three chapters of the book.

    The plot is very linear and straightforward, really what you’d expect from a young adult novel. The protagonists are upper middle/lower upper class multimillionaires living charmed lives in Las Vegas. The male protagonist is an enormous Gary Stu throughout the story.

    There’s very little gore or violence. What is described is fairly matter-of-fact without a lot of excess detail. The big love scene between the protagonists is only 20 or 25 lines long and well-abstracted, almost tasteful by today’s standards.

    You could give this book to a 9th or 10th grader and not worry they’ll be scarred for life. It’s not even close to the level of films like Friday the 13th, Hostel, Saw, etc.

  58. This chap seems to be worth listening to re: COVID-19. Straightforward analysis of reports and research papers:

  59. Anon[298] • Disclaimer says:

    I would advise people to start pulling various Covid-19 and other medical data off websites right now, because when the virus starts spreading across the Europe and US, there’s going to be mass panic among the elites, and they’re going to be yanking down or blocking websites that discuss these things. The elites, who control our media and think they know better than the masses what’s good for the public, will think it’s better for the masses to be left in ignorance and thus stay ‘calm.’

    Secondly, Quinine has been found to be useful against Covid-19. Why do I mention this? Because it’s available over the counter as Red Cinchona bark in the herbal section, and these three things can occur during a pandemic:

    A) You can’t get into a hospital because they’re overloaded with patients. So you aren’t given any treatment even if you’re really sick.

    B) We run out of drugs. Most of the US supply is made in China, whose industries have ground to a halt. Even so, if they gear up again, they may have so many sick people (1 billion population) that their government may reserve all their medicine for their own population. So we get none. So you aren’t given any medications in the US even if you’re really sick.

    C) You’re too poor to afford to pay a hefty drug price or cover a hospital stay. You have no insurance.

    D) Your whole city has been quarantined, and you can’t work your job. You live paycheck to paycheck, and once that money is gone, you’re broke and can’t afford to buy anything, much less medicine.

    So you might want to consider the Quinine option. Like, buy some right now just in case. Cinchona bark has been used against malaria for hundreds of years, and it’s pretty safe to use.

    Also, buy a bottle of real olive oil. Most of our supply is adulterated, but the stuff from California olive farms is real. The acids in olive oil have anti-viral properties (as do the ones in coconut oil), and olive oil can help deal with a viral load in your digestive tract. Butter has zero anti-viral properties. Also, soap doesn’t kill viruses. If stores run out of disinfectants, you can rub olive oil or coconut oil on your hands to help with virus contamination.

    Olive oil also has medium-chain triglycerides, which can help you if you’re sick. When you’re sick, you go into keto, and you lose your appetite. Your body starts burning your fat reserves. The human body is programmed to do this when you’re sick because digestion is a process that uses a lot of fuel, and your body is trying to conserve its energy. Medium-chain triglycerides can be absorbed for bodily fuel directly by the liver without having to undergo any sort of conversion process, so it’s easier on the body. Just don’t overdose on olive oil.

    Finally, if you get a tax return this year, SAVE IT, because a lot of us are going to be out of work for a while in case of quarantine. You’ll need a cash reserve to help pay the bills. If you’re getting a return, go ahead and do it NOW. The IRS may shut down if they’re all off sick in a month or so, and not issuing any returns at all.

    In a pandemic, you need to think 3-4 steps ahead to protect yourself and your family.

  60. @Jus' Sayin'...
    Thanks, Godfree!

    Godfree has a new Unzer friend! Perfect for people who want Chinese propaganda, but with a heaping dose of rabid antisemitism and antiamericanism that the mild-mannered GR doesn’t seem to have in him.

    https://www.unz.com/pescobar/no-weapon-left-behind-the-american-hybrid-war-on-china/

  61. For those who are living in US, I would suggest storing a couple of bags of rice & beans (or canned food/ ready to eat tins if you prefer). I went to Costco today & all the isles are stocked and everything is normal. But once people get panicky & quarantines are imposed, I expect people rushing to buy as many food items as they can. If you want to panic, panic early.

  62. Hey, it’s great to read a little bit of prepper talk here on iSteve. Usually nobody wants to talk to them about their crazy ideas, until until everybody does, and they’re not reachable out in the sticks or their bunkers.

    • Replies: @Lot
    I think US preppers, especially the dabblers, focus way too much about food. That will be just about the last thing the US, a massive food waster and massive net exporter, will run out of.

    I also think a full social breakdown just isn’t going to happen. We’re an extension of England and it hasn’t really happened since the 11th Century. Even The Anarchy wasn’t really that anarchic. Wiki:

    “ Later historians critiqued the term, however, as analysis of the financial records and other documents from the period suggested that the actual breakdown in law and order during the conflict had been more nuanced and localised than chronicler accounts alone might have suggested”

    I think the most important thing to be ready for are short term disruption in water and electric supply. So lots of potable water, fuel for generators or a solar system, batteries, etc. Also a supply of any medication you need.
  63. @Anonymous
    Has anyone noticed it mainly kills Asians? I read somewhere that East Asians have more ACE2 receptors in the lungs and results in their lungs being overwhelmed by this specific virus. SARS and this coronavirus adhere to those ACE2 receptors. Other ethnic groups don’t have as many ACE2 receptors. Something for us in HBD world to think about. Different genes, different immune system response...

    Light research of SARS from 2002-2003 shows only 2 Caucasians died from it. One was an Italian doctor who treated the first cases in Asia and he technically died from a heart attack.

    The Italian victim announced this morning only tested positive for the initial simple Coronavirus swab test, definitive blood tests are not back yet. And he was aged 78 and may have had pre-existing conditions.

    Something to contemplate. Any epidemiologists out there? I don’t think it’s a biological weapon, that’s a bridge too far. But I’d love some research on SARS and this new novel virus to test this thesis if it kills certain group more quickly due to genetic underlying reasons.

    Has anyone noticed it mainly kills Asians? I read somewhere that East Asians have more ACE2 receptors in the lungs and results in their lungs being overwhelmed by this specific virus

    Only because the outbreak started there and is well ahead of the rest of the world. I definitely would not count on that continuing.

    • Agree: reiner Tor
  64. @Lot
    “ I now fear the moment when Xi Jinping will look better than our own leaders”

    We can’t shut down illegal migration at our border, we sure aren’t going to be enforcing massive quarantines like the Chinese are.

    We still don’t have a China travel ban!

    We can’t shut down illegal migration at our border, we sure aren’t going to be enforcing massive quarantines like the Chinese are.

    They could shut down illegal immigration in a heartbeat if they wanted to. Eisenhower did so and kicked out over a million illegals in the 50s.

  65. @Achmed E. Newman
    Hey, it's great to read a little bit of prepper talk here on iSteve. Usually nobody wants to talk to them about their crazy ideas, until until everybody does, and they're not reachable out in the sticks or their bunkers.

    I think US preppers, especially the dabblers, focus way too much about food. That will be just about the last thing the US, a massive food waster and massive net exporter, will run out of.

    I also think a full social breakdown just isn’t going to happen. We’re an extension of England and it hasn’t really happened since the 11th Century. Even The Anarchy wasn’t really that anarchic. Wiki:

    “ Later historians critiqued the term, however, as analysis of the financial records and other documents from the period suggested that the actual breakdown in law and order during the conflict had been more nuanced and localised than chronicler accounts alone might have suggested”

    I think the most important thing to be ready for are short term disruption in water and electric supply. So lots of potable water, fuel for generators or a solar system, batteries, etc. Also a supply of any medication you need.

  66. Financial historian Niall Ferguson has pointed out that during the five weeks in 1914 between the assassination of the Archduke Franz Ferdinand on June 28 and the outbreak of mass fighting in the first week of August, the financial markets were clueless about what was coming until the last week of July 1914.

    It’s an interesting problem. There was a diplomatic crisis every few years in the early 20th century, and each time (until the last) the best bet was that the Great Powers would come to their senses and preserve the peace.

    Now, we have an epidemiological crisis every 10 years – AIDS, BSE, SARS, MERS, and Coronavirus, along with perpetual warnings that antibiotics will soon cease to be effective. The rational response is to assume that each new crisis will be managed correctly and will fizzle out. This will always be the correct guess – until one day it isn’t.

    • Replies: @El Dato

    managed correctly
     
    The thing is that these "crises" are barely managed.

    It's same as for the Space Shuttle O-Ring problem.

    > We have nearly had burn-through this time.
    > Maybe we need to change the design ... hmmm .... no, too difficult.
    > Listen, it worked. Looks we have still some margin left in the old horse.
    > Ok, are we go for launch?
    > GO GO GO
    > We have really nearly had burn-through this time though.
    > Maybe we need to change the design ... hmmm .... no, too difficult.
    > Listen, it's risky but it always worked before. Looks we have still some margin left in the old horse.
    > Ok, are we go for launch?
    > GO GO GO

    etc.

    "Normalization of Deviance"
  67. Anonymous[427] • Disclaimer says:
    @SFG
    If this reveals the dangers of offshoring your supply chain and brings manufacturing back to the US, it could be a good thing long-term.

    Offshoring of pharmaceuticals has many negative aspects, one being that the offshore vendors apparently feel that they can control how their products are used, e.g., states can not get hold of drugs for executions. Another is that eventually each pharmaceutical gets to be a single source item due to economies of scale, and a disaster can throttle the world supply.

    How to make US pharma houses make a broad spectrum of basic pharmaceuticals is a question I do not know the answer to. Tariffs could be a problem especially as they might have to be quite high to have any effect.

    I have long held that the tax code should have “manufacturing gains” wherein domestic manufacturing profits would be taxed at a lower rate. It should be lower even than “capital gains” but there should be some strings attached shitty bottom feeder businesses should be less eligible than high quality ones genuinely positively impacting the economy.

    • Agree: Rob
  68. @Steve Richter
    as to the WWI analogy, I cannot explain what caused that war and why it continued. Honestly, was it Germany against all the other European powers and Russia? Why did Great Britain get involved to the point of years long trench warfare?

    I’ve been studying it for 25 years now, and I’m no better off than you.

  69. @Desiderius
    https://twitter.com/toad_spotted/status/1231227300768833536?s=20

    https://twitter.com/toad_spotted/status/1231237980976812033?s=20

    You are now being accused of being a Russian Troll!

    Russia isn’t only behind election hacking! They’re also trying to smear US over coronavirus … according to State Department

    US State Department officials are claiming Moscow is behind an internet campaign to blame the coronavirus on the US government.

    Without citing specific examples, officials told AFP [Graunshit, Yahoo) that the foreign nation is using “false personas” to spread conspiracy theories about the virus, including that the virus is the US’ attempt to “wage economic war on China” and that it could be a biological weapon deployed by the CIA to “spread anti-China messages.”

    The messages are apparently spread through thousands of online accounts, run by people and not bots, which post similar messages in multiple languages and can be “linked back to Russian proxies.” The unknown number of accounts all received “carte blanche” from the Russian government to say whatever they can to damage the US’ reputation [why not just sit still and let events develop then?], the report claims.

    Philip Reeker [the name goes wit hthe territory], the acting Assistant Secretary of State for Europe and Eurasia, says Russia’s intent in this loosely-detailed effort is to “undermine US institutions and alliances from within.” The State Department also blamed this campaign of “Russian talking points” for slower responses to the coronavirus in Africa and Asia. [ridiculous to 85-IQ persons even]

    All this information is supposedly gathered in a report by the Global Engagement Center (GCE) and seen by AFP. The State Department’s GCE has a sketchy history of being accused of spreading its own propaganda, like a $1.5 million program that was deployed to discredit any and all critics of Trump’s policies in Iran. The account @IranDisinfo was running smear campaigns against anyone, including journalists, who dared to challenge the president’s hawkish policies, despite the account supposedly being meant to only combat Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS) propaganda.

    People being given tax dollars to use up leather chairs, perform bullshit jobs, perform daily commutes in the DC area and be insufferable nuisances.

  70. @James N. Kennett

    Financial historian Niall Ferguson has pointed out that during the five weeks in 1914 between the assassination of the Archduke Franz Ferdinand on June 28 and the outbreak of mass fighting in the first week of August, the financial markets were clueless about what was coming until the last week of July 1914.
     
    It's an interesting problem. There was a diplomatic crisis every few years in the early 20th century, and each time (until the last) the best bet was that the Great Powers would come to their senses and preserve the peace.

    Now, we have an epidemiological crisis every 10 years - AIDS, BSE, SARS, MERS, and Coronavirus, along with perpetual warnings that antibiotics will soon cease to be effective. The rational response is to assume that each new crisis will be managed correctly and will fizzle out. This will always be the correct guess - until one day it isn't.

    managed correctly

    The thing is that these “crises” are barely managed.

    It’s same as for the Space Shuttle O-Ring problem.

    > We have nearly had burn-through this time.
    > Maybe we need to change the design … hmmm …. no, too difficult.
    > Listen, it worked. Looks we have still some margin left in the old horse.
    > Ok, are we go for launch?
    > GO GO GO
    > We have really nearly had burn-through this time though.
    > Maybe we need to change the design … hmmm …. no, too difficult.
    > Listen, it’s risky but it always worked before. Looks we have still some margin left in the old horse.
    > Ok, are we go for launch?
    > GO GO GO

    etc.

    “Normalization of Deviance”

  71. @Steve Richter
    as to the WWI analogy, I cannot explain what caused that war and why it continued. Honestly, was it Germany against all the other European powers and Russia? Why did Great Britain get involved to the point of years long trench warfare?

    The game matrix says that to disengage once engaged, everyone has to agree to stop the bullshit in good faith and at the same time. This is a rare occurence.

    • Replies: @Desiderius
    The game matrix says no bullshit to begin with. Tit-fot-tat contains no disengagement mechanism. That requires a New Testament.
  72. @Jus' Sayin'...
    I spent the last fifteen years of my active career as an epidemiologist in my state's department of public. Back in the 1980s I and a colleague developed a model that quite accurately predicted the eventual spread of HIV/AIDS, by dividing the population into infection pools, with transmission rates that differed within and between group and by stage of disease, a novel approach at the time. In my later career I was part of a team studying different drug addictions and the resulting morbidity and mortality as if they were infectious, chronic diseases.

    I know as well as anyone how difficult it is to predict the spread of a novel pathogen and the resulting mortality and morbidity. However, the patterns that are beginning to emerge from within China, from the quarantined cruise ship, and now from a growing number of widely scattered hot spots are extremely concerning. The apparent likelihood of a worldwide pandemic now appears to be much greater than it was even a week ago and the growth in potential threat level seems to be accelerating. A pandemic, should it occur, would be accompanied by severe social disruption and high mortality rates, due both to the disease itself and the pandemic's broader impacts on society. It would likely be accompanied and followed by widespread and novel patterns of morbidity.

    I do not intend to write a jeremiad but neither would I scoff at the potential for a serious, possibly catastrophic, pandemic.

    The only scoffers are sufferers of IQ poisoning.

  73. @Steve Richter
    as to the WWI analogy, I cannot explain what caused that war and why it continued. Honestly, was it Germany against all the other European powers and Russia? Why did Great Britain get involved to the point of years long trench warfare?

    Think of it (WWI and WWII as one war) as the European Civil War or as the second Thirty Years War.

    Why didn’t the UK get involved in our Civil War as the Confederacy expected, indeed counted on? It was a close run thing. The Brits got where they were by strangling rival powers in the crib after they themselves got the upper hand on the Sun King. If Germany had succesfully created an EU in 1914 they would have quickly gained supremacy on the Brits, who had been declining is relative terms for half a century.

    Brit dominance in colonial wars against outgunned natives made them overconfident that taking out the Kaiser would be just as quick and easy. Germany’s industrial/technological power gave them power orders of magnitude above their numbers just as ours does today when unconstrained by lawyers and the like.

  74. @El Dato
    The game matrix says that to disengage once engaged, everyone has to agree to stop the bullshit in good faith and at the same time. This is a rare occurence.

    The game matrix says no bullshit to begin with. Tit-fot-tat contains no disengagement mechanism. That requires a New Testament.

  75. @Jake Barnes
    Did you volunteer your travel history or did they just happen to notice a stamp? I’ve flown into HKIA probably 40 times and never get asked anything (except occasionally asking if I’m arriving to work since my work visa expired long ago).

    In my case I was warned off for this reason and never flew to HK in the first place. With your experience I’d probably have been more persistent. But I didn’t want to risk the enormous cost of forfeiting business-class round-trip airline tickets, plus the fact that I’d then have to buy a last-minute ticket out of there.

  76. @Puremania
    FWIW I’ve been watching gold prices spike. Even goldprice.org lost the thread on their 30-day chart.

    Gold has gone ballistic, on the plus side Steve will be getting a nice donation from me shortly when I decide to take some profits on my gold mining shares.

  77. @Anon
    In Japan, where there are not even really that many patients yet compared to China and Korea:

    -- Complaints about lack of disclosure from local officials about what train lines patients rode on, where they are, etc. I'm not sure this sort of information should be made public in a sort of "sex offender database" style manner, but the controversy shows growing concern on the part of the public.

    -- A couple of B level theme parks shut down for the next month, including the Hello Kitty park. The Tokyo marathon had previously changed to a pros only, no amateur event.

    -- Doctors and small clinics want to be able to turn away patients, and want the government to designate places for them to go for examination. The clinics say that they cannot segregate different types of patients, and they cannot do the test themselves. The government has already told concerned people to stay at home if they do not have serious symptoms and are not in a high risk group for pneumonia death.

    -- Hospitals say they are at risk of maxing out on beds so they will not be able to handle a big increase.

    -- People are wondering why so much decision-making is being done at the local level by indecisive local bureaucrats and politicians. I think that this will be a big problem in the United States with all its federalism, made worse by "diversity" and the resulting claims that any decision is discriminatory towards someone.

    Ever since Fukushima I have felt that there should be some sort of disaster special forces organization that would be statutorily tasked with jumping in and managing disasters, with the explicit goal of taking bureaucrats and politicians out of the loop and giving them some CYA. The disaster organization would be given something akin to martial law power for a period of time, a week or a month or so, to make hard decisions, for instance for decisions like venting radioactive gas from reactors to avoid worse future consequences. It would be like having EU-style technocrats running things for a little while without having EU-style technocrats in charge all the time.

    But I already sense a sort of epidemic fatigue, people moving on to other topics. Japanese victims have mostly been elderly, so people may think of it as a kinder way for gramps to die than cancer. When young adults start to die, maybe the panic will reassert itself.

    I think I might pick up some books about the black plague. I had always intended to read Daniel Defoe's quasi-fictional A Journal of the Plague Year. Here's Samuel Pepys bragging about his courage in not fleeing London until things completely went off the rails:

    I having stayed in the city till above 7,400 died in one week, and of them above 6,000 of the plague, and little noise heard day nor night but tolling of bells; till I could walk Lombard Street and not meet twenty persons from one end to the other, and not fifty upon the Exchange; till whole families (ten and twelve together) have been swept away; till my very physican, Dr. Burnet, who undertook to secure me against any infection . . . died himself of the plague; till the nights (though much lengthened) are grown too short to conceal the burials of those that died the day before, people thereby constrained to borrow daylight for that service; lastly, till I could find neither meat nor drink safe, the butcheries being everywhere visited, my brewer’s house shut up, and my baker with his whole family dead of the plague. Yet, Madam, through God’s blessing and the good humours begot in my attendance upon our late Amours [he means the recent wedding] your poor servant is in a perfect state of health.
     

    Ever since Fukushima I have felt that there should be some sort of disaster special forces organization that would be statutorily tasked with jumping in and managing disasters, with the explicit goal of taking bureaucrats and politicians out of the loop and giving them some CYA.

    The disaster organization would be given something akin to martial law power for a period of time, a week or a month or so, to make hard decisions, for instance for decisions like venting radioactive gas from reactors to avoid worse future consequences. It would be like having EU-style technocrats running things for a little while without having EU-style technocrats in charge all the time.

    Brilliant idea! Send in the supermen to clean things up, like the Pied Piper.

    The plague cleaned up, our unaccountable supermen will, of course, quietly and without payment return to their far-away military bases, never to be heard from again.

  78. anonymous[414] • Disclaimer says:
    @Anonymous
    FWIW, that link is from New Tang Dynasty news, which is affiliated with the Falun Gong movement. The Falun Gong is said to have ties to the CIA and NED (National Endowment for Democracy), which uses Falun Gong media outlets like New Tang Dynasty and The Epoch Times to promote anti Chinese communist regime messaging.

    FWIW, that link is from New Tang Dynasty news, which is affiliated with the Falun Gong movement. The Falun Gong is said to have ties to the CIA and NED (National Endowment for Democracy), which uses Falun Gong media outlets like New Tang Dynasty and The Epoch Times to promote anti Chinese communist regime messaging.

    You may be right that NTD is a CIA/NED front.

    Nonetheless, the underlying post re COVID-19 in Chinese (reproduced in full on the NTD website) makes a number of highly technical and seemingly knowledgeable points (e.g. about abuses at Chinese research labs) that are either authentic or a very well-researched forgery.

Comments are closed.

Subscribe to All Steve Sailer Comments via RSS