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Infection Rate in Silicon Valley in Early April Was 1% to 6%, Suggesting Infection Fatality Rate Is Much Lower Than Case Fatality Rate, But That Herd Immunity Is Far Off
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Here’s today’s much-awaited PDF preprint (not peer reviewed) by a Stanford team that performed blood antibody tests on a fairly representative sample of 3,330 Santa Clara County residents on April 3-4. Stanford professor authors Bendavid, Bhattacharya, and Ioannidis have been prominent skeptics of the recent doom-oriented conventional wisdom.

COVID-19 Antibody Seroprevalence in Santa Clara County, California

Eran Bendavid, Bianca Mulaney, Neeraj Sood, Soleil Shah, Emilia Ling, Rebecca Bromley-Dulfano, Cara Lai, Zoe Weissberg, Rodrigo Saavedra, James Tedrow, Dona Tversky, Andrew Bogan, Thomas Kupiec, Daniel Eichner, Ribhav Gupta, John Ioannidis, Jay Bhattacharya

Background: Addressing COVID-19 is a pressing health and social concern. To date, many epidemic projections and policies addressing COVID-19 have been designed without seroprevalence data to inform epidemic parameters. We measured the seroprevalence of antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 in Santa Clara County.

As you’ll recall, a PCR nasal swab test is intended to measure whether you are infected right now, while an antibody blood test is intended to measure whether you have ever been infected (or perhaps not counting the most recent days).

Methods: On 4/3-4/4, 2020, we tested county residents for antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 using a lateral flow immunoassay. Participants were recruited using Facebook ads targeting a representative sample of the county by demographic and geographic characteristics. We report the prevalence of antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 in a sample of 3,330 people, adjusting for zip code, sex, and race/ethnicity. We also adjust for test performance characteristics using 3 different estimates: (i) the test manufacturer’s data, (ii) a sample of 37 positive and 30 negative controls tested at Stanford, and (iii) a combination of both.

Results: The unadjusted prevalence of antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 in Santa Clara County was 1.5% (exact binomial 95CI 1.11-1.97%), and the population-weighted prevalence was 2.81% (95CI 2.24-3.37%). Under the three scenarios for test performance characteristics, the population prevalence of COVID-19 in Santa Clara ranged from 2.49% (95CI 1.80-3.17%) to 4.16% (2.58-5.70%).

For all its biomedical technology, California had shamefully low testing percentages, among the worst in the country until late March. So its Case Fatality Rate (deaths/confirmed cases) was much exaggerated relative to its Infection Fertility Rate (deaths/actual infections).

But everybody already knew that Confirmed Cases was much lower due to lack of testing than any plausible estimate of actual cases.

These prevalence estimates represent a range between 48,000 and 81,000 people infected in Santa Clara County by early April, 50-85-fold more than the number of confirmed cases.

Today, Santa Clara County has 1,870 official cumulative cases, with a current doubling rate of every three weeks, one of the lower in the country. Today, it has 73 official deaths. So that’s a Case Fatality Rate of 3.9% (which I don’t think anybody believes anymore).

Conclusions: The population prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 antibodies in Santa Clara County implies that the infection is much more widespread than indicated by the number of confirmed cases. Population prevalence estimates can now be used to calibrate epidemic and mortality projections.

On the other hand, that looks like a long way from herd immunity, which is usually assumed to be over 50%.

There have been two popular arguments for optimism:

  • Infection Fatality Rate has been much lower than the Case Fatality Rate
  • We are practically to Herd Immunity already

This new paper seems to support the first proposition, but not the second.

On the other other hand, Silicon Valley has been surprisingly lightly hit for a place with a lot of contact with China and some of the earliest known infections in the U.S.

Presumably, places like NYC have higher infection rates. One study from a New York City hospital of women coming in for childbirth found a 15% infection rate, although one commenter alleged that hospital had a lot of Ultraorthodox patients, who have seemingly been hard hit.

By the way, even a study like this one that made an effort to reduce self-selection will still have problems with self-selection, although it’s hard to guess how they will bias results. They probably got a lot of people who signed up for the drive-thru because they are worried they might have the virus, perhaps because they are out and about. They perhaps got fewer hard-core isolaters and fewer What-Me-Worry? Alfred E. Neumans.

Mandatory maternity ward testing is probably a decent way to get around self-selection, at least for a sample of youngish women, which can then be adjusted for demographics (since we know a lot about the demographics of new mothers).

Here is the March 24 Wall Street Journal op-ed by Professors Bendavid and Bhattacharya

Is the Coronavirus as Deadly as They Say?

Current estimates about the Covid-19 fatality rate may be too high by orders of magnitude.

By Eran Bendavid and Jay Bhattacharya
March 24, 2020 6:21 pm ET

If it’s true that the novel coronavirus would kill millions without shelter-in-place orders and quarantines, then the extraordinary measures being carried out in cities and states around the country are surely justified. But there’s little evidence to confirm that premise—and projections of the death toll could plausibly be orders of magnitude too high.

Fear of Covid-19 is based on its high estimated case fatality rate—2% to 4% of people with confirmed Covid-19 have died, according to the World Health Organization and others. So if 100 million Americans ultimately get the disease, two million to four million could die. We believe that estimate is deeply flawed. The true fatality rate is the portion of those infected who die, not the deaths from identified positive cases.

The latter rate is misleading because of selection bias in testing. The degree of bias is uncertain because available data are limited. But it could make the difference between an epidemic that kills 20,000 and one that kills two million. If the number of actual infections is much larger than the number of cases—orders of magnitude larger—then the true fatality rate is much lower as well. That’s not only plausible but likely based on what we know so far.

,,, An epidemic seed on Jan. 1 implies that by March 9 about six million people in the U.S. would have been infected. As of March 23, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there were 499 Covid-19 deaths in the U.S. If our surmise of six million cases is accurate

Ten days later, Santa Clara County had 1% to 6% infected, which would be 3 million to 20 million nationwide, although it’s hard to guess how Silicon Valley compares to the rest of the country: it has a very high percentage of world travelers, but it also went heavily for work-from-home fairly early in March and has a population that is way above the American average in the cognitive power to grasp and follow new rules. I’m guessing Santa Clara County (Palo Alto and San Jose) is the highest average IQ large county in the country, or at least up there with some DC suburban counties.

, that’s a mortality rate of 0.01%, assuming a two week lag between infection and death. This is one-tenth of the flu mortality rate of 0.1%. Such a low death rate would be cause for optimism.

But now we are up from 499 deaths to 31,647 deaths.

Anyway, this valuable new data suggest that Case Fatality Rates aren’t all that high (absent hospitals being overwhelmed), but Herd Immunity is still a long way off.

My opinion is the big, unexpected development is that hospital capacity has proven more elastic than was assumed.

Strikingly, this didn’t happen so much by expanding medical care supply as by depressing medical care demand. Non-COVID trips to the emergency room went way down, and NYC doctors innovated a new protocol for treating COVID patients with breathing problems (put them on their stomachs and treat with oxygen masks) that cut ventilator demand substantially. Because caring for patients on ventilators is hugely labor-intensive, that in turn cut demand for doctors and nurses to far below earlier estimates.

So, we appear to have Flattened the Curve.

Now what?

 
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  1. On the other hand, Silicon Valley has been surprisingly lightly hit for a place with a lot of contact with China and some of the earlier known infections in the U.S.

    They listened to Ron and took off for Telluride.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
    Dont get him started on ski bums, hurricanes etc.


    This whole era has taken @ Isteve well out of his empiricistic commentary to some whacked out support news aggregator.
  2. In the east, the opposite result:

    A large Boston homeless shelter was given universal testing. Result:

    397 people tested, 146 people tested positive. Not a single one had any symptoms.

    That’s 37% positives. Zero symptoms for a sample of 146 coronavirus-positives lends credibility to the theorized all-population 99% asymptomatic estimate proposed by increasing numbers of experts.

    (“CDC reviewing ‘stunning’ universal testing results from Boston homeless shelter,” April 15, Boston25News [local Fox affiliate].)

    • Replies: @Elli
    One bad possibility is that they all got infected at the same time in a super spreader event and they are still at a very early presymptomatic stage of infection.

    Or maybe they are all skinny and hardy with high vitamin D levels, and substance abuse and mental illness or its treatment are protective.

    Or maybe the tests are bad.

    , @Jake
    Shouldn't the homeless be dying and nearly dying of Covid-19 in huge numbers?

    They have underlying issues, and they do not follow orders; nor do they have common sense.

  3. A long way from herd immunity, and a long way from Wuhan virus being especially deadly to an individual infected. Shouldn’t a 1% death rate indicate 5000 to 8000 dead in Santa Clara County alone by now? Where exactly are the dead? Maybe, just maybe, both exponential junkies and skeptics were both a little right. The Wuhan virus is more contagious than the flu, but not more deadly — as a percentage of the infected. Overall though, it would cause more deaths if no mitigation is taken.

    • Agree: LondonBob
    • Replies: @Hail

    Where exactly are the dead?
     
    Be careful with impudent questions like that, XYZ. You'll get labeled a Krazy Korona Hoaxer by certain parties.
    , @AnotherDad

    Shouldn’t a 1% death rate indicate 5000 to 8000 dead in Santa Clara County alone by now?
     
    Check math.
    , @Negrolphin Pool
    The 8,893 deaths currently attributed to Covid 19 in New York City — population 8.4 million — imply an absolute minimum local long-term fatality rate of just over .1 percent, which is equivalent to an exceptionally bad flu season. This unrealistically assumes that the entire population has already been infected, has recovered and is immune.

    The caveat is that NYC residents almost certainly suffer from higher rates of comorbidities than those in Silicon Valley, which can have a massively disproportionate mortality impact.

    Applying an assumed 5 percent infection prevalence, this would place the long-term NYC fatality rate at 2 percent. A discrepancy of that magnitude with an IFR in a different location of <.05 percent is still possible, but pushing the limits of probability.

  4. anon[369] • Disclaimer says:

    , Silicon Valley has been surprisingly lightly hit for a place with a lot of contact with China and some of the earlier known infections in the U.S.

    The demographics, definitely skew younger than NYC and probably fitter with lower obesity rates. That would mean lower rates of Type II diabetes and hypertension. With fewer comorbid people, fewer serious cases to be expected.

    Presumably, places like NYC have higher infection rates.

    I’m tired of presuming. Let’s find out. Gov. Cuomo has plenty of money and authority, let him repeat this experiment on a cross section of New York City residents, instead of presuming. If he won’t do it, then let Bloomberg spend a bit of his money on something other than a vanity-press political campaign.

    Enough talk. There are actions to be taken at the state and municipality level, time to put the pressure on governors and mayors to get the facts.

  5. Meanwhile, ultra-orthodox Jews are getting their ultra-orthodox Asses kicked.

    Helpful Hint: Try shaving your China Flu beards. They’re like virus flypaper ya dumb putzes!!

    Jesus Christ, some people’s Jews…

  6. That’s the conclusion you draw?

    The area has a current CFR of 3% that needs to be divided more than 50 fold and you don’t think it worth mentioning?

    The more data that comes out the more likely it seems for a not weird population in not weird circumstances to experience an IFR of considerably less than 0.1%

    And of those 0.1% the average age seems to be about 80 years old.

    It is a real virus that causes a real illness and it is a bad thing, but a sense of proportion would do people a huge amount of good. It would also stop our countries throwing the baby out with the bathwater by lockdown.

    Nevermind that lockdowns themselves are kind of stupid, given that the more lockdowned you are the less the benefit and the worse the cost, therefore total lockdown is completely idiotic. Like buying the world’s most expensive speaker system only to play just low quality MP3 files through it.

    • Replies: @Hail

    The more data that comes out the more likely it seems for a not weird population in not weird circumstances to experience an IFR of considerably less than 0.1%

    And of those 0.1% the average age seems to be about 80 years old.

    It is a real virus that causes a real illness and it is a bad thing, but a sense of proportion would do people a huge amount of good.
     

    Exactly right.

    "These prevalence estimates represent a range between 48,000 and 81,000 people infected in Santa Clara County by early April"

    Santa Clara County had 47 corona-positive deaths by April 9, almost a week after the study posted here. Given that even some of these 47 might be deaths-with and notdeaths-from, we're talking a good bet that a fairly-measured coronavirus fatality rate may even round to 0.0% (i.e., <0.05%).

    I've said this here before, and it is a bold claim. Actually it is really a kind of blasphemy. 'Believers' will get angry if you suggest that a final, fairly-measured, all-population fatality rate might round to 0.0%, and very-unlikely is much above 0.1%. Maybe when all cases resolve, the partisans of the Panic can argue over the scraps and push the final figure above 0.1%, if they really want. But that this is a unremarkable virus now seems more and more certain by the day. This was either a giant mistake or the Hoax of the Twenty-First Century. Maybe that's an "and/or."

    A low fatality rate within the range of a bad flu strain was exactly what top experts have been saying for over a month, but they lost the initiative as the Doomers, misanthropes, wackos, fanatics (and also some good people, believe me) seized control of the ship of state. Oh, and the Corona Coup d'Etat squad.

    , @Anonymousse
    Yep... all the real evidence says lockdown should never have happened but since it ALREADY happened it should NOW be lifted completely, everywhere, and immediately. Corona was never a real threat but our terrible decision making IS.

    An awful lot of people seem to have climbed way up in a tree with their rhetoric on this one (media, international organizations, healthcare experts, politicians generally, even trump, and yes Sailer too) and are all kind of politely edging their way back down.

    It’s fine if they want to play this game and even act like the initial reaction made sense. But it’s not fine when the face saving is dragging this thing out potentially months more at a cost of trillions of dollars, millions of jobs, hundreds of thousands of businesses, and yes thousands of lives through despair and disruption.

    News organizations are barely even *carrying* the new antibody studies and if they do they are portraying it as a SCARY BAD result (OH NO 85x as many people have this DEADLY VIRUS!). That’s how dishonest we are still being on this; your average normie still thinks their healthy third grader could keel over at any second.

    If they don’t come clean and admit the gigantic mistake they’ve made... regular people may be scared enough to stay home - even when the dozens of people on the task force decided we’ve jumped through sufficient hoops. This demand and productivity destruction could be catastrophic just by itself.

  7. “Facebook ads targeting a representative sample”

    Representative sample of what? Facebook users?

    • Agree: Meretricious, botazefa
    • Replies: @Negrolphin Pool
    Facebook users who are itching to know if they're infected.
  8. Participants were recruited using Facebook ads targeting a representative sample of the county by demographic and geographic characteristics

    Facebook ads

    If at least one Russian, or anyone who speaks Russian, is involved… prepare for accusations of “Coronavirus Meddling.” (Or are the political-crimes-against-humanity of Meddling and Collusion, as discovered by the Holy Media a few years ago, now discarded? It’s hard to keep up.)

    Breaking news. Dr. Ioannidis was spotted on several occasions since 2018 at an Orthodox church of some kind. Can you believe that? It’s so obvious. He’s one of them. “None dare call it CoronaTreason.”

  9. Infection Rate in Silicon Valley Was 1% to 6% in Early April, Far Below Herd Immunity Level

    Herd is the right word.

  10. @Hail
    In the east, the opposite result:

    A large Boston homeless shelter was given universal testing. Result:

    397 people tested, 146 people tested positive. Not a single one had any symptoms.
     
    That's 37% positives. Zero symptoms for a sample of 146 coronavirus-positives lends credibility to the theorized all-population 99% asymptomatic estimate proposed by increasing numbers of experts.

    ("CDC reviewing ‘stunning’ universal testing results from Boston homeless shelter," April 15, Boston25News [local Fox affiliate].)

    One bad possibility is that they all got infected at the same time in a super spreader event and they are still at a very early presymptomatic stage of infection.

    Or maybe they are all skinny and hardy with high vitamin D levels, and substance abuse and mental illness or its treatment are protective.

    Or maybe the tests are bad.

    • Replies: @epebble
    Occam's razor points to this being an antibody test 1.0 problem. Antibody testing is quite difficult and current early versions are very error prone. Works well in lab but not in field.

    https://www.sciencetimes.com/articles/25145/20200329/spain-and-other-countries-return-defective-covid-19-test-kits-to-china.htm

    The Stanford experiment should also be considered an early experiment and conclusions are very tentative at best. China and South Korea have reported possible cases of reinfection:

    https://qz.com/1837798/why-some-covid-19-patients-might-have-tested-positive-twice/

    If that is true, our understanding of Covid antibodies may be incomplete.
  11. But now we are up from 499 deaths to 31,647 deaths.

    But exactly how many of them are due to COVID-19, how many are people who would have otherwise died anyway who happened to have SARS-COV-2, and how many were caused by the Lockdown:

    https://archive.is/2eKCW#selection-743.0-755.126

    England and Wales have experienced a record number of deaths in a single week, with 6,000 more than average for this time of year. Only half of those extra numbers were attributed to the coronavirus. Experts said they were shocked by the rise, particularly in non-Covid-19 deaths, and expressed concern that the lockdown might be having unintended consequences for people’s health. There are fears that patients are not seeking help for life-threatening conditions, including heart attacks, because they are worried about catching coronavirus in hospital. Experts said that conditions such as diabetes or high blood pressure may also be proving harder to manage during the lockdown.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    The early data out of Northern Italy, Spain, UK, and NYC suggested that official coronavirus deaths were only a fraction, such as one half, of total excess mortality. One reason was often due to only counting deaths in hospitals as due to CV.

    Recently, counting methods have tended to change toward counting more CV deaths.

    , @Meretricious
    'Tis an evil virus indeed which can kill so many without even infecting them.
  12. Some key takeaways from this study and quite a number of others like it seem to be:

    (1) SARS-CoV-2 is a lot more infectious than is generally admitted or accepted.

    (2) Most of those infected with SARS-CoV-2 are either asymptomatic or experience mild symptoms.

    (3) Where SARS-CoV-2 infections are epidemic the prevalence of those who are or have been infected is often (usually?) many orders of magnitude greater than official estimates.

    (4) The virulence of Covid-19 as measured by need for hospitalization and/or case fatality rates is much lower than official estimates and probably less than an order of magnitude greater than similar measures for the flu.

    This leads me to the conclusion that an individual’s reaction to a SARS-CoV-2 infection is strongly mediated by both genetics and pre-existing conditions. Most people are lucky and have either no response to a SARS-CoV-2 infection or a very mild one. An unfortunate minority are genetically predisposed to a severe reaction. Pre-existing conditions may amplify an individual’s response to a SARS-CoV-2 infection. For all we know now, those who have been infected once can be infected again and this is more than likely also genetically determined,

    If these rather reasonable conclusions are correct then the SARS-CoV-2 virus will continue burning its way through human populations until a significant proportion those predisposed to a severe response to infection are removed from the gene pool and herd immunity emerges. This is basic Darwinian theory. It’s been operating for thousands of years.

    And if that is true then all the economic, social, and political chaos created by current, stringent public health measures may be for nought. They may just delay the inevitable culling of the herd that occurs when a new pathogen appears on the scene.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    But if everybody over a certain age is playing Russian Roulette with 1 bullet in a 100 chamber revolver, how vibrant is the economy going to be?
    , @Eagle Eye

    Some key takeaways from this study and quite a number of others like it seem to be: ...
     
    The authorship of the paper is a blue-ribbon assembly of individuals solely motivated by by the quest for objectivity and truth:

    3 Sol Price School of Public Policy, University of Southern California, Los Angeles CA


    Price faculty are renowned for their ...
    engagement with policy leaders at the local, state, national and international levels, and the actionable knowledge resulting from their work
     
    4 Health Education is Power, Inc., Palo Alto CA

    Website is curiously reticent about the organization's funding, history, staffing, etc.

    5 The Compliance Resource Group, Inc., Oklahoma City OK

    CRG is the Consulting Subsidiary of the Council of Ethical Organizations and Health Ethics Trust.
     


    CRG is the Consulting Subsidiary of the Council of Ethical Organizations and Health Ethics Trust.
     
    6 Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford
    CA

    Our faculty members are ... community engaged leaders with transformative impact across many disciplines of science, medicine, and health policy.
     

    7 Bogan Associates, LLC, Palo Alto CA

    Bogan Associates, LLC has been recognized by Wealth & Finance International magazine’s Wealth & Money Management Awards 2014, being named Best Head Fund Manager - Massachusetts.
     

  13. Hmm. Study says the manufacturer found that 2 out of 327 control samples (taken pe-covid) were false positives. That would seem to make their raw 1.5% positive result meaningless. Or am I missing something?

    • Replies: @Frank the Prof
    No, I think you're on to something.
  14. @Jus' Sayin'...
    Some key takeaways from this study and quite a number of others like it seem to be:

    (1) SARS-CoV-2 is a lot more infectious than is generally admitted or accepted.

    (2) Most of those infected with SARS-CoV-2 are either asymptomatic or experience mild symptoms.

    (3) Where SARS-CoV-2 infections are epidemic the prevalence of those who are or have been infected is often (usually?) many orders of magnitude greater than official estimates.

    (4) The virulence of Covid-19 as measured by need for hospitalization and/or case fatality rates is much lower than official estimates and probably less than an order of magnitude greater than similar measures for the flu.

    This leads me to the conclusion that an individual's reaction to a SARS-CoV-2 infection is strongly mediated by both genetics and pre-existing conditions. Most people are lucky and have either no response to a SARS-CoV-2 infection or a very mild one. An unfortunate minority are genetically predisposed to a severe reaction. Pre-existing conditions may amplify an individual's response to a SARS-CoV-2 infection. For all we know now, those who have been infected once can be infected again and this is more than likely also genetically determined,

    If these rather reasonable conclusions are correct then the SARS-CoV-2 virus will continue burning its way through human populations until a significant proportion those predisposed to a severe response to infection are removed from the gene pool and herd immunity emerges. This is basic Darwinian theory. It's been operating for thousands of years.

    And if that is true then all the economic, social, and political chaos created by current, stringent public health measures may be for nought. They may just delay the inevitable culling of the herd that occurs when a new pathogen appears on the scene.

    But if everybody over a certain age is playing Russian Roulette with 1 bullet in a 100 chamber revolver, how vibrant is the economy going to be?

    • Troll: Je Suis Omar Mateen
    • Replies: @UK
    Those people over the age of 75 or whatever can simply choose to isolate themselves if they don't like the risk. It isn't ideal. In fact it is pretty horrible, but obviously less horrible than everyone under that age isolate themselves as well.
    , @Whiskey
    It would be better than this. More than half of LA County adults are unemployed. National unemployment is 25% and over 17 million are unemployed.

    Small business is extinct. Permanently. Period.

    And President Stacey Abrams has her GET YT plan ready to go. Since Biden is a slam dunk and she is his running mate.

    Camps for Whitey will be opening soon. Gavin Newsome has plans. Jello Biafra tried to warn you.
    , @Jus' Sayin'...
    Darwin wrote words to the effect that he had difficulty believing in a merciful deity when he contemplated the cruelty and suffering inherent in nature and natural selection. My main point is that current policies just delay the cruel and inevitable Darwinian selection while imposing unnecessary and onerous damage on economy and society.

    But beyond this, the unfortunate fact is that many, if not most, of those who will be forced to "play Russian Roulette" are economic deadwood or, even worse, a drag on the economy. Clearing pension, Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid rolls will be a significant benefit to the economy. This is not callousness on my part but just a recognition of actuarial and economic realities. I myself may be high risk for a serious or fatal case of Covid-19 since I'm a male, over 70, overweight, and immuno-compromised.
    , @Nonsubhomine
    Everyone over a certain age plays such a game every winter. We (broadly construed) could reduce the number of flu deaths every single winter by going into lockdown between New Year’s Day and Easter, yet people generally accept the risks of flu infection as part of life. Ultimately people will have to do the same here as well; perhaps we’ll start getting annual Coronavirus vaccines of varying effectiveness. Nonetheless, people—usually older or otherwise medically compromised—will succumb to the disease on a regular basis. Maybe your prediction of widespread prophylaxis, e.g., masks and other physical barriers, will become part of the new normal, but the primary adjustment will be an appreciation of the “old normal,” i.e., that life is accompanied by some amount of unavoidable risk but that the opportunity to enjoy the basic good things in life outweighs that risk.
    , @Inquiring Mind
    I am told that by age 60, your yearly chance of dying is 1 in 100 from all causes.
    , @Hebrew National
    Based on this new study, what population is that, which faces a 1% chance of dying from Corona? Is that population's risk from influenza any less than 1%?
    , @AnotherDad
    Hate to break it to you Steve, but up here in the nosebleed years your chance of croaking every year is greater than 1%.
    https://www.ssa.gov/oact/STATS/table4c6.html

    Granted most of the 1.24% of 61 year-olds who are supposed to cash in this year, you could sort of guess were "ready". You could probably sort through all the 61 year-olds and pick out the 5% you thought were "in trouble" and they would account for over half of that 1.24%. But they'll be some surprises too.

    We all fly away.
    , @Stealth
    A whole lot more vibrant than it is right now.
  15. The authors of the study adjust their raw data for zip code (essentially class), sex and ethnicity but not for age. Is age not relevant? On the face of it, you would expect those no longer in education or employment to have the least risk of exposure but (in this particular epidemic) the greatest risk of removal from the population given that exposure has occurred.

  16. @Mr. Anon

    But now we are up from 499 deaths to 31,647 deaths.
     
    But exactly how many of them are due to COVID-19, how many are people who would have otherwise died anyway who happened to have SARS-COV-2, and how many were caused by the Lockdown:

    https://archive.is/2eKCW#selection-743.0-755.126

    England and Wales have experienced a record number of deaths in a single week, with 6,000 more than average for this time of year. Only half of those extra numbers were attributed to the coronavirus. Experts said they were shocked by the rise, particularly in non-Covid-19 deaths, and expressed concern that the lockdown might be having unintended consequences for people’s health. There are fears that patients are not seeking help for life-threatening conditions, including heart attacks, because they are worried about catching coronavirus in hospital. Experts said that conditions such as diabetes or high blood pressure may also be proving harder to manage during the lockdown.
     

    The early data out of Northern Italy, Spain, UK, and NYC suggested that official coronavirus deaths were only a fraction, such as one half, of total excess mortality. One reason was often due to only counting deaths in hospitals as due to CV.

    Recently, counting methods have tended to change toward counting more CV deaths.

    • Replies: @vhrm
    Sure, but that means that we can't look at excess mortality in general and attribute it to the virus's direct biological effects vs our reaction to the presence of the virus.

    A) a person who died at home of viral pneumonia caused by Sars-cov-2

    B) a person who dies of a heart attack at home with no virus in his system "because" he's been stressed out about the pandemic (or losing his job) etc.

    I'm all for counting A as a Covid-19 death, but the people quoted in Mr Anon's article will also count excess death B as one as well. On the one hand, it is. He would not have died (this quarter) if Covid-19 weren't around.

    However, i think B is actually collateral damage due to response and should be called out as such when the response is analysed*.

    *) and blame for the overreaction is allocated. Ok ok, "so we won't do it again next time."
    , @JerseyJeffersonian
    One of the very first topics discussed with my new urologist when discussing my PSA count was that way, way, way fewer men died from a cancer originating in the prostate than died with a cancer originating in the prostate (since characteristically most such cancers were not of a sort that would metastasize). This was clearly done to minimize panic, and to frame requests for any more invasive testing procedures than the blood test by which PSA count was obtained. I have gone through subsequent forms of testing, and although the importance of continued vigilance is crystal clear, the avoidance of undue anxiety was a high value to this physician throughout. So far, no worrying signs have been identified despite the ratcheting up of testing, and the professionalism exhibited by my urologist throughout is confirmed.

    The difference from the handling of this issue by my urologist to the, to my mind, clear panic-mongering of the "experts" such as Fauci & Co. could scarcely be more stark. Whatever panicking induced in the population which seemed appropriate to them has been arguably related to their unforgivable ineptitude (or turpitude if they were persuaded to serve an agenda of some other powerful lobby such as Big Pharma lusting after a fantastically lucrative cash flow from a projected, but not yet developed, vaccine...) in not being prepared to effectively respond to the real possibility of the advent of the long-threatened deadly global pandemic toward which the arc of their careers supposedly equipped them, and which preparation should have justified the public trust (and more importantly, the trust of President Trump as his advisors) in them.

    Frankly, I'm not seeing it. One could argue persuasively that the Chinese - out of embarassment, or malice - obscured the potential of the outbreak, and led the CDC and others to fail to act with dispatch to enlist the assistance of all of those, public or private, available with the expertise to properly assess the threat, and explore all avenues for minimization of infections, or for identification of treatments for those afflicted. But for whatever reasons, the reaction was unfocused, and the "experts" panicked in result of this. And here we are, with little in the way of epidemiological coherence, lots of ass covering, and very serious economic and social consequences with which to deal.

    Twice in my personal experience, either bad judgment or bad execution by supposed medical professionals has jeopardized my life and now, absent reliable assurance on both accounts, I am certainly justified in having a high degree of skepticism.

    I trust my urologist; his counsel and expertise have secured my confidence. But could I say the same for these guys? No, I can't say that it has.
    , @Mr. Anon

    The early data out of Northern Italy, Spain, UK, and NYC suggested that official coronavirus deaths were only a fraction, such as one half, of total excess mortality. One reason was often due to only counting deaths in hospitals as due to CV.
     
    But how many of those people who died at home died from coronavirus, rather than just dying of stroke, heart-attack, or even neglect. A lot of younger-to-middle-aged people have been holding their elderly relatives at arms length so as to not infect them. And I have read that, in Italy, a lot of home health-care workers were foreigners (eastern european) who left Italy when the lockdown began, so as not to get stranded there. How many old people have been dying at home of neglect?

    As to old folks dying in nursing homes - those should be the easiest people to isolate from potential infection spreaders and protect. Social distancing would have done little to help them.
  17. I think herd immunity is something that happens when all the vulnerable are dead, the living are tired of hearing about it, and the grandkids are dancing on our graves.

    Something to look forward to.

  18. @Steve Sailer
    But if everybody over a certain age is playing Russian Roulette with 1 bullet in a 100 chamber revolver, how vibrant is the economy going to be?

    Those people over the age of 75 or whatever can simply choose to isolate themselves if they don’t like the risk. It isn’t ideal. In fact it is pretty horrible, but obviously less horrible than everyone under that age isolate themselves as well.

    • Replies: @Alexander Turok
    What do you think of my idea to selectively end the shutdown? People can stop isolating themselves so long as they agree to two conditions:

    1. Agree that if they do get sick with corona or some disease that looks like it could be corona, they will renounce their right to all medical care more serious than CVS Health Day & Night Cold + Flu Plus Softgels, whether they have insurance or not, whether they have the ability to pay or not, and that if they try to renege on this they will be criminally prosecuted.

    2. Agree to wear a special symbol on their clothing so that others can distinguish them from responsible people who go out once a month to buy needed supplies or work jobs which must be done, and agree that others have an absolute right to discriminate against them, such as by refusing to hire them, refusing to allow them to use their stores, segregating them within, etc., for the remainder of the pandemic. I suggest the symbol be a pinhead.
  19. Silicon Valley has been surprisingly lightly hit for a place with a lot of contact with China and some of the earlier known infections in the U.S.

    Santa Clara, San Mateo, San Francisco counties are among the worst in California when it comes to case rate and/or death rate per 100,000. San Jose County is number two in deaths. https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/us/california-coronavirus-cases.html

    • Replies: @Alden
    I looked at the county graph the NYSLIMES provided. It appears marijuana farming prevents China virus. Perhaps all the potassium or the enormous amounts of water kills the China flu virus.

    On the other hand, who believes anything in the Slimes?
    , @Pincher Martin
    That's to be expected. California as a whole is doing pretty well, but the hardest hit areas are to be expected. The denser urban areas filled with heterogenous populations who are constantly on the move and do a lot of business overseas.

    But compare San Francisco to New York City. SF is the second densest city in America, after NYC, with a population over 250,000.

    Also like New York City, San Francisco has a large percentage of its working population which commutes to work via mass transit, whether by BART, ferry or bus. This makes it very different from San Diego, LA, and San Jose, which are cities in which the vast majority of people commute to work in their cars.

    Yet to date, SF has only 1,000 cases and 20 deaths.

    NYC has at least 120,000 cases and at least 8,000 deaths. And both those numbers are most likely very low. San Francisco's numbers are also low, but probably a more accurate a gauge of what is happening in that city than NYC's numbers are an accurate gauge of what is happening there.

    Even accounting for the fact that NYC is more densely populated than SF (27,800 per square mile compared to 17,250 per square mile) and about ten times as large (8 million in population compared to 800K), the difference between those two cities' coronavirus numbers is shocking.
  20. @XYZ (no Mr.)
    A long way from herd immunity, and a long way from Wuhan virus being especially deadly to an individual infected. Shouldn't a 1% death rate indicate 5000 to 8000 dead in Santa Clara County alone by now? Where exactly are the dead? Maybe, just maybe, both exponential junkies and skeptics were both a little right. The Wuhan virus is more contagious than the flu, but not more deadly -- as a percentage of the infected. Overall though, it would cause more deaths if no mitigation is taken.

    Where exactly are the dead?

    Be careful with impudent questions like that, XYZ. You’ll get labeled a Krazy Korona Hoaxer by certain parties.

    • Replies: @Alexander Turok
    Coronavirus is the #1 cause of death in the U.S. right now. It's far deadlier than the flu. The problem is not people asking the questions, it's people refusing to listen to the answers.
    , @Ron Unz

    Be careful with impudent questions like that, XYZ. You’ll get labeled a Krazy Korona Hoaxer by certain parties.
     
    Not really. But the commenter you endorsed does have problems with multiplication, and since you didn't notice, perhaps you do as well.
  21. Strikingly, this didn’t happen so much by expanding medical care supply as by depressing medical care demand

    No kidding. If you know anyone who works at a hospital, you will know that the lockdown recession has paradoxically hit healthcare as well. So many are getting furloughed or having their hours cut. I guess we solved the Great American Nurse Shortage.

    BTW, where can I go and look at cool analytic dashboards that show how many people will die as a result of “elective” procedures being put on hold indefinitely?

    • Agree: Hail
    • Replies: @Alden
    Good point. Except for purely cosmetic surgery, there’s no such thing as elective surgery.

    There are 3 kinds of surgery

    Cosmetic elective surgery
    Emergency surgery
    Necessary surgery that need not be done within a few days but does need to be done within a reasonable time before further damage or death results.

    Think of all the people whose hip and leg ligaments tendons and muscles and spines will deteriorate further because of unwise delay of hip and knee replacements?

    How many cardiac patients will die because surgery is delayed?

    How many people with macular deterioration will go blind because necessary treatment is delayed?

    How many medical practices will go bankrupt because of lack of customers? A medical practice is no different from any other business. No revenue, no customers, equals no paychecks and no bills paid.
    , @Coemgen
    COVID-19 patients tend to be "cost centers" for hospitals rather than "profit centers."

    The big money for hospitals is in expensive surgeries. They can't afford to be be "convalescent homes" which is what COVID-19 patient support tends to require.

    I wonder how much profit there is for hospitals in unnecessary surgeries such as "gender" reassignment?
  22. @Steve Sailer
    But if everybody over a certain age is playing Russian Roulette with 1 bullet in a 100 chamber revolver, how vibrant is the economy going to be?

    It would be better than this. More than half of LA County adults are unemployed. National unemployment is 25% and over 17 million are unemployed.

    Small business is extinct. Permanently. Period.

    And President Stacey Abrams has her GET YT plan ready to go. Since Biden is a slam dunk and she is his running mate.

    Camps for Whitey will be opening soon. Gavin Newsome has plans. Jello Biafra tried to warn you.

    • Replies: @Alexander Turok
    The funny thing is that, in normal circumstances, the electorate "rallies around the flag" when their nation is in crisis. The incumbent gets a bump. He doesn't even need to handle it well, just look like he's taking it seriously. But Trump is too dumb to see that. He thinks those voters in Michigan are gonna lynch him if the Dow falls.

    And he will lose.
    , @Anonymous

    Small business is extinct. Permanently. Period.
     
    No, small business is never extinct. Even in the Soviet Union where it was outright illegal, there were small businesses.

    But small business is inherently ephemeral. People start them, and wind them up. By nature, it's a rough way to make a living. Conservatives and the GOP constantly promote and aggrandize small business when in truth, a lot of people have no business being in business for themselves and do much better as employees in a paternalistic corporation with benefits.

    The fifties, sixties and seventies were the golden era of being a working class schlub because a 100 IQ guy could get a union job, or a nonunion job from a plant that paid more to keep the union out, with a defined benefit pension plan (because even most white people can not plan very well for their future-let alone blacks and mestizos) and healthcare. A lot of people sent their kids through college largely or wholly on their dime, bought little vacation houses and boats and even airplanes, and had comfortable retirements who in their own businesses would have made a major cock-up of it and died penniless.

    Even bigger businesses fail more often than they succeed. Apple started small and are now the biggest business on planet, but look at Commodore, look at Gateway 2000, look at all the high flying workstation companies of the late 80s. Look at all the dead retailers, the dead restaurant chains.

    The mill hunkies and Polacks in my family who worked in Chicago-Republic Steel, IH Wisconsin Steel, USS South Works-had good lives and are all dead now, but most of them died happier than their kids,most of them became engineers and accountants and such and had decent lives and families but they worked 70, 80 hour weeks, they had more stuff but their kids in turn went to shit as often as not due to a total lack of parental attention.

    If people need encouragement to start their own businesses, they shouldn't be starting their own businesses-it's a pretty good rule. The GOP of the Chamber of Commerce needs to die, worse than the Democrats do. We need to rig the system so if you want to make a lot of money and have the capacity for hard smart work, the drive and the ruthlessness you can, but you have to be a net asset and not a net liability to Joe Average. Offshoring manufacturing needs to be made unprofitable or marginally profitable. The FIRE sector needs trimming down to size.

    It won't happen, of course, because in the long run the Empire is doomed and there is going to be an enormous upheaval. And in the short run, Joe Average is too naive, too unorganized, too bovine to do what needs doing.
    , @Alexander Turok

    Small business is extinct. Permanently. Period.
     
    And it's all part of the Democrat plot, right? That's what Gavin Newsom and Barbara Boxer want. It's not like they ever eat in expensive restaurants, no, they rely entirely on a diet of aborted fetuses.

    I think that, deep down, people who say things like this know their beliefs to be spurious. They do it to signal their loyalty to the tribe: that he's willing to debase himself(anonymously on the internet, of course) by saying these dumb things, that they're "all-in," unlike others who may be sitting on the fences. They know, too, that this kind of radical LARPing alienates people and ends up harming the causes they believe in. They don't really care.
  23. @Hail
    In the east, the opposite result:

    A large Boston homeless shelter was given universal testing. Result:

    397 people tested, 146 people tested positive. Not a single one had any symptoms.
     
    That's 37% positives. Zero symptoms for a sample of 146 coronavirus-positives lends credibility to the theorized all-population 99% asymptomatic estimate proposed by increasing numbers of experts.

    ("CDC reviewing ‘stunning’ universal testing results from Boston homeless shelter," April 15, Boston25News [local Fox affiliate].)

    Shouldn’t the homeless be dying and nearly dying of Covid-19 in huge numbers?

    They have underlying issues, and they do not follow orders; nor do they have common sense.

    • Replies: @Alden
    The homeless have fewer Chinese virus patient than the housed and employees. That’s because they are outside most of the time breathing fresh air, not cooped up with fellow workers breathing each other’s germs and viruses. Plus they get more virus killing sunshine than workers or those with homes.
    , @Simon Tugmutton
    The homeless are exposed to far more dirt than most people, and are likely to develop immunity to a lot of microbes, including other coronaviruses. Of course, bad diet, alcohol, drugs, lack of sleep, etc. will predispose them to succumb to maladies in general, especially if their immune systems are out of whack. It may be that in this particular case they have acquired some resistance. As a group, they are are exceptional in epidemiological terms.
    , @BB753
    Homelesness is good for you. Fresh air, plenty of sunshine, a boost to your immune system. Plenty of cheap booze and food and stuff. No rent, no bills, no taxes.
  24. @Steve Sailer
    But if everybody over a certain age is playing Russian Roulette with 1 bullet in a 100 chamber revolver, how vibrant is the economy going to be?

    Darwin wrote words to the effect that he had difficulty believing in a merciful deity when he contemplated the cruelty and suffering inherent in nature and natural selection. My main point is that current policies just delay the cruel and inevitable Darwinian selection while imposing unnecessary and onerous damage on economy and society.

    But beyond this, the unfortunate fact is that many, if not most, of those who will be forced to “play Russian Roulette” are economic deadwood or, even worse, a drag on the economy. Clearing pension, Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid rolls will be a significant benefit to the economy. This is not callousness on my part but just a recognition of actuarial and economic realities. I myself may be high risk for a serious or fatal case of Covid-19 since I’m a male, over 70, overweight, and immuno-compromised.

    • Agree: leterip
    • Thanks: Redneck farmer
  25. @Steve Sailer
    But if everybody over a certain age is playing Russian Roulette with 1 bullet in a 100 chamber revolver, how vibrant is the economy going to be?

    Everyone over a certain age plays such a game every winter. We (broadly construed) could reduce the number of flu deaths every single winter by going into lockdown between New Year’s Day and Easter, yet people generally accept the risks of flu infection as part of life. Ultimately people will have to do the same here as well; perhaps we’ll start getting annual Coronavirus vaccines of varying effectiveness. Nonetheless, people—usually older or otherwise medically compromised—will succumb to the disease on a regular basis. Maybe your prediction of widespread prophylaxis, e.g., masks and other physical barriers, will become part of the new normal, but the primary adjustment will be an appreciation of the “old normal,” i.e., that life is accompanied by some amount of unavoidable risk but that the opportunity to enjoy the basic good things in life outweighs that risk.

    • Replies: @moshe
    Yes, Older people, for whom the possibility of death is one they've come to expect tend to respond to this coronavirus far more rationally than the completely safe pundit class of blogging troglodytes.

    https://youtu.be/9L5co0f_Jag
  26. @UK
    That's the conclusion you draw?

    The area has a current CFR of 3% that needs to be divided more than 50 fold and you don't think it worth mentioning?

    The more data that comes out the more likely it seems for a not weird population in not weird circumstances to experience an IFR of considerably less than 0.1%

    And of those 0.1% the average age seems to be about 80 years old.

    It is a real virus that causes a real illness and it is a bad thing, but a sense of proportion would do people a huge amount of good. It would also stop our countries throwing the baby out with the bathwater by lockdown.

    Nevermind that lockdowns themselves are kind of stupid, given that the more lockdowned you are the less the benefit and the worse the cost, therefore total lockdown is completely idiotic. Like buying the world's most expensive speaker system only to play just low quality MP3 files through it.

    The more data that comes out the more likely it seems for a not weird population in not weird circumstances to experience an IFR of considerably less than 0.1%

    And of those 0.1% the average age seems to be about 80 years old.

    It is a real virus that causes a real illness and it is a bad thing, but a sense of proportion would do people a huge amount of good.

    Exactly right.

    “These prevalence estimates represent a range between 48,000 and 81,000 people infected in Santa Clara County by early April”

    Santa Clara County had 47 corona-positive deaths by April 9, almost a week after the study posted here. Given that even some of these 47 might be deaths-with and notdeaths-from, we’re talking a good bet that a fairly-measured coronavirus fatality rate may even round to 0.0% (i.e., <0.05%).

    I've said this here before, and it is a bold claim. Actually it is really a kind of blasphemy. 'Believers' will get angry if you suggest that a final, fairly-measured, all-population fatality rate might round to 0.0%, and very-unlikely is much above 0.1%. Maybe when all cases resolve, the partisans of the Panic can argue over the scraps and push the final figure above 0.1%, if they really want. But that this is a unremarkable virus now seems more and more certain by the day. This was either a giant mistake or the Hoax of the Twenty-First Century. Maybe that’s an “and/or.”

    A low fatality rate within the range of a bad flu strain was exactly what top experts have been saying for over a month, but they lost the initiative as the Doomers, misanthropes, wackos, fanatics (and also some good people, believe me) seized control of the ship of state. Oh, and the Corona Coup d’Etat squad.

  27. @UK
    Those people over the age of 75 or whatever can simply choose to isolate themselves if they don't like the risk. It isn't ideal. In fact it is pretty horrible, but obviously less horrible than everyone under that age isolate themselves as well.

    What do you think of my idea to selectively end the shutdown? People can stop isolating themselves so long as they agree to two conditions:

    1. Agree that if they do get sick with corona or some disease that looks like it could be corona, they will renounce their right to all medical care more serious than CVS Health Day & Night Cold + Flu Plus Softgels, whether they have insurance or not, whether they have the ability to pay or not, and that if they try to renege on this they will be criminally prosecuted.

    2. Agree to wear a special symbol on their clothing so that others can distinguish them from responsible people who go out once a month to buy needed supplies or work jobs which must be done, and agree that others have an absolute right to discriminate against them, such as by refusing to hire them, refusing to allow them to use their stores, segregating them within, etc., for the remainder of the pandemic. I suggest the symbol be a pinhead.

    • Troll: Je Suis Omar Mateen
    • Replies: @Meretricious
    You are channelling Cuthbert Rumbold.
    , @Sam Haysom
    I prefer my plan of beginning tomorrow we launch a 24 hour go fund me. If boomers deposit 400 million dollars of assets before time runs out- the lockdown is extended one more day. On day 2 it goes up to 500 million dollars. And so on.

    Additionally boomers can designate 100 I’ll call them fatties (morbidly obese boomers you probably qualify). At the end of each week if these 100 fatties lose an average of ten pounds each the amount of the go fund me is reduced 100 million dollars.
    , @JosephB
    Sure thing! If those who continue to socially distance are forced to sign an agreement to forgo any COVID-related benefits, and any unemployment compensation beyond that which existed January 1, 2020. Hey, if you're not willing to risk generating the revenue that funds these wondrous schemes, why should you benefit from them?
  28. @Hail

    Where exactly are the dead?
     
    Be careful with impudent questions like that, XYZ. You'll get labeled a Krazy Korona Hoaxer by certain parties.

    Coronavirus is the #1 cause of death in the U.S. right now. It’s far deadlier than the flu. The problem is not people asking the questions, it’s people refusing to listen to the answers.

    • Agree: JRB
    • Disagree: The Wild Geese Howard, Hail
    • Replies: @Daniel Williams

    Coronavirus is the #1 cause of death in the U.S. right now.
     
    No it isn’t. Heart disease is. It kills hundreds of thousands of Americans a year.
    , @XYZ (no Mr.)
    1) I didn't say it wasn't killing people.

    2) 8,000 Americans die every day on average. Just because Wuhan virus is the number one cause of death recently (at approximately 2000 deaths per day) doesn't at all mean it's close to causing most deaths. Learn to reason -- it may help you in life.

    3) I believed the 1% fatality rate -- wasn't that expounded by many here? So to break it down slowly for you: 50000 to 80000 infected in Santa Clara County, California, suggests I should be seeing lots of dead people in Santa Clara County, California. New York City hospitals overflowing is not related to this. Problems in Michigan are not related to this. So again, where are the dead?
  29. @Whiskey
    It would be better than this. More than half of LA County adults are unemployed. National unemployment is 25% and over 17 million are unemployed.

    Small business is extinct. Permanently. Period.

    And President Stacey Abrams has her GET YT plan ready to go. Since Biden is a slam dunk and she is his running mate.

    Camps for Whitey will be opening soon. Gavin Newsome has plans. Jello Biafra tried to warn you.

    The funny thing is that, in normal circumstances, the electorate “rallies around the flag” when their nation is in crisis. The incumbent gets a bump. He doesn’t even need to handle it well, just look like he’s taking it seriously. But Trump is too dumb to see that. He thinks those voters in Michigan are gonna lynch him if the Dow falls.

    And he will lose.

    • Troll: Manfred Arcane
    • Replies: @Kyle
    No voters in Michigan are going to lynch the governor once money for food and rent runs out. Trump is irrelevant.
    , @Je Suis Omar Mateen
    "Trump is too dumb to see that. He thinks those voters in Michigan are gonna lynch him if the Dow falls."

    It is obvious to everyone that Democratic governors colluded to interfere with the results of the 2020 election after it was clear that a child-sniffing pederast in the throes of stage-three Alzheimer's is the Democratic nominee.

    The data from Europe prove kungflu is a mild virus. The debate is over.

    #CoronaHoax
    , @botazefa

    And he will lose.
     
    Or, Trump has recognized that arrogant Democrat governors are going to dig in and push the lockdowns too far - cratering local economies. Those Michigan unemployment benefits will be history by election day. What those Michigan voters may remember is how Trump was "fighting" for them on Twitter when he demanded their governor re-open the economy - a demand the Michigan governor is likely to resist for reasons.
  30. So, we appear to have Flattened the Curve. Now what?

    Something tells me that whatever the answer is, it won’t include an apology to the millions of people whose lives have been puréed thanks to our big-brained masters, the experts who advised them, and the various models that have proven so accurate (no augury here—we’re a scientific people!) these last few months.

    • Replies: @Alexander Turok

    it won’t include an apology to the millions of people whose lives have been puréed thanks to our big-brained masters, the experts who advised them, and the various models that have proven so accurate
     
    Would a non-apology apology be accepted? How about "I'm sorry you're too dumb to grasp that the shutdowns were what prevented all the deaths we warned would happen without them?"

    I like the scare-italics around "models." What have scientific models ever done for the world? You can't think of anything, so the answer must be nothing.

    When I first watched Idiocracy, I thought it was funny, but had a hard time getting over how unrealistic the premise was. A world of morons would never appoint the smartest man alive to a government position thinking he will fix their problems. They'd just keep laughing at him.
  31. @Alexander Turok
    Coronavirus is the #1 cause of death in the U.S. right now. It's far deadlier than the flu. The problem is not people asking the questions, it's people refusing to listen to the answers.

    Coronavirus is the #1 cause of death in the U.S. right now.

    No it isn’t. Heart disease is. It kills hundreds of thousands of Americans a year.

    • Replies: @Alexander Turok
    And if coronavirus keeps it up, it'll kill even more:

    https://www.healthleadersmedia.com/welcome-ad?toURL=/covid-19/coronavirus-becomes-number-one-cause-death-day-us-surpassing-heart-disease-and-cancer
    , @Pincher Martin
    That's no longer true. On a daily basis, coronavirus took over the #1 spot sometime last week.
    , @Frank the Prof

    No it isn’t. Heart disease is. It kills hundreds of thousands of Americans a year.
     
    See the graph for NY state at

    https://www.thenewatlantis.com/publications/not-like-the-flu-not-like-car-crashes-not-like

    Coronavirus deaths are now 2.5x greater than all other deaths combined for NY state.

    You can see a heart disease vs CV breakout here:

    https://www.businessinsider.com/coronavirus-deaths-how-pandemic-compares-to-other-deadly-outbreaks-2020-4

    CV is now the #1 cause of death in the US.
  32. assuming a two week lag between infection and death.

    That is not a reasonable assumption.

    • Replies: @Pincher Martin

    That is not a reasonable assumption.
     
    I agree. It should be longer. At least one Diamond Princess fatality from the coronavirus took nearly two months from the time the infected man tested positive for the virus. I think half of the 14 deaths came more than a month after the cruise liner was first quarantined and passengers were isolated in their rooms. The last man to die from the DP cruise passed away on April 14th.
  33. Santa Clara county reports 69 total deaths today, two weeks after the study’s sample. With

    These prevalence estimates represent a range between 48,000 and 81,000 people infected in Santa Clara County by early April

    That’s 0.09% to 0.14% IFR which is solidly in the flu camp.

    However, to get to NYC’s 8k -12k deaths with that IFR it would mean everyone in NYC (~9m people) already has had it. Or at least anyone who would die of it, already has had it. That seems unlikely.

    • Replies: @Polynikes
    Or NYC is cooking the books a bit. A hate to get into that because it takes us away from hard numbers, but the financial, and political, incentive is there. They just added 3700 back dated deaths.

    Or maybe they're not. And NYC is just hit really hard for a multitude of reasons. I'm sure that tucked within the flu's normal 0.1% rate is set of varying numbers all over the country. On average Pennsylvania is probably hit harder with the flu than New Mexico. And at the end of the day it averages out to 0.1%.

    So that means NYC is going through a rough time. Most of the country isn't. At the end of the day, if the numbers are reliable, the average for the whole country will come out. It won't truly reflect the acute hardship of NYC nor the relative ease Florida is having.
  34. If the true mortality rate is on par with the flu, then how does one explain the deluge of deaths and hospitalizations experienced in epicenters like Northern Italy and NYC? I personally know physicians working in NYC and they are adamant what they are experiencing is an absolute nightmare that bears no comparison to the flu whatsoever.

    • Thanks: Alden
    • Troll: LondonBob
    • Replies: @XYZ (no Mr.)
    Because the mortality rate is separate from the infection rate for all but the most deadly diseases.

    The flu appears to spread much more slowly than the Wuhan virus. Imagine if everyone in America got the flu at the exact same time. If you collapsed all the deaths from a bad flu season into one month it would be very rough indeed. Which is exactly what we are seeing now.

    That is very different than saying if you get the virus you are much more likely to die than if you get the flu.

    And the Wuhan virus may certainly be deadlier on average than the flu to an individual, but the factor certainly appears to be trending down from 10 or 20 times deadlier as first estimated, to perhaps a few.
    , @Anonymous
    A lower fatality rate would be consistent with more hospitalizations if corona were more contagious than the flu. Which it appears to be.
    , @NOTA
    That’s the mystery here. Is this result explained by different strains of the virus spreading in different places? Different genetics or behavioral factors making the disease so much nastier in NYC and Northern Italy than in California? False positives among the tests giving us a much-inflated estimate of the number of cases so far? Different ways of catching it (inhaling one droplet as I pass you jogging vs stewing in contagion in a New York subway car for 15 minutes?)
  35. @Reg Cæsar

    On the other hand, Silicon Valley has been surprisingly lightly hit for a place with a lot of contact with China and some of the earlier known infections in the U.S.
     
    They listened to Ron and took off for Telluride.

    Dont get him started on ski bums, hurricanes etc.

    This whole era has taken @ Isteve well out of his empiricistic commentary to some whacked out support news aggregator.

  36. The doubling time in CA in early April was six days. The sample was taken on April 3-4, which means the number of cases may have doubled more than twice since then. The infection rate is in the teens, using the mid-point of the study. How is herd immunity so far away?

    Hard to say how distancing changed the doubling time, but by early April the measures had been in place for two weeks, so you might expect to see the effect by then.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    Doubling time of official confirmed cases in Santa Clara County is currently 21.3 days. Official cases have increased from about 1100 on April 3 to 1870 on April 17.

    Santa Clara County is one of the brighter spots in the country in terms of the trajectory.

  37. NYC doctors innovated a new protocol for treating COVID patients with breathing problems (put them on their stomachs and treat with oxygen masks) that cut ventilator demand substantially. Because caring for patients on ventilators is hugely labor-intensive, that in turn cut demand for doctors and nurses to far below earlier estimates.

    Optimism depends on the immediate environment. Silicon Valley people behave differently than those who lick microphones and engage in sociable behavior regardless of risks. Plus, Remidisvir shows promise, but your doctor needs to know enough to use prescribe it and you need to follow instructions such as take your diabetes meds.

    So, we appear to have Flattened the Curve.

    I still think there will be several curves; one for those who decided to wear face masks early and another for those who decide to forego caution too early.

  38. @Steve Sailer
    But if everybody over a certain age is playing Russian Roulette with 1 bullet in a 100 chamber revolver, how vibrant is the economy going to be?

    I am told that by age 60, your yearly chance of dying is 1 in 100 from all causes.

  39. @varsicule

    Strikingly, this didn’t happen so much by expanding medical care supply as by depressing medical care demand
     
    No kidding. If you know anyone who works at a hospital, you will know that the lockdown recession has paradoxically hit healthcare as well. So many are getting furloughed or having their hours cut. I guess we solved the Great American Nurse Shortage.

    BTW, where can I go and look at cool analytic dashboards that show how many people will die as a result of "elective" procedures being put on hold indefinitely?

    Good point. Except for purely cosmetic surgery, there’s no such thing as elective surgery.

    There are 3 kinds of surgery

    Cosmetic elective surgery
    Emergency surgery
    Necessary surgery that need not be done within a few days but does need to be done within a reasonable time before further damage or death results.

    Think of all the people whose hip and leg ligaments tendons and muscles and spines will deteriorate further because of unwise delay of hip and knee replacements?

    How many cardiac patients will die because surgery is delayed?

    How many people with macular deterioration will go blind because necessary treatment is delayed?

    How many medical practices will go bankrupt because of lack of customers? A medical practice is no different from any other business. No revenue, no customers, equals no paychecks and no bills paid.

    • Replies: @Anonymous

    A medical practice is no different from any other business. No revenue, no customers, equals no paychecks and no bills paid.
     
    What bills need to be paid if they aren’t operating?
  40. @DJ
    The doubling time in CA in early April was six days. The sample was taken on April 3-4, which means the number of cases may have doubled more than twice since then. The infection rate is in the teens, using the mid-point of the study. How is herd immunity so far away?

    Hard to say how distancing changed the doubling time, but by early April the measures had been in place for two weeks, so you might expect to see the effect by then.

    Doubling time of official confirmed cases in Santa Clara County is currently 21.3 days. Official cases have increased from about 1100 on April 3 to 1870 on April 17.

    Santa Clara County is one of the brighter spots in the country in terms of the trajectory.

    • Replies: @trelane
    That Santa Clara "bright spot" has infections increasing 3-4% per day using your numbers.

    R0>1.0 is indicated because the numbers are going up week over week and not down.

    There are probably 50,000 infections in Santa Clara (not the detected 1800)

    Your chance of meeting an infected person at random is probably 1-in-30 in Santa Clara

    Santa Clara is a real "bright spot"

    Visit Santa Clara to meet Ron Unz, publisher of the Unz report or whatever it's called!
  41. Yesterday I was driving by a large hospital in a NOCAL suburb with a huge (American Born) Chinese population percentage. Parked and walked around it and looked inside the window of the emergency room. At 10:00 A.M.

    1. parking lot ~ 1/3 full
    2. all employees masked
    3. ~> 50% customers unmasked
    4. no vehicles in emergency room driveway
    5. handful of customers in emergency room waiting area (it looked from the outside like it was the emergency room waiting area–I did not go inside the door and make a more thorough determination)
    6. no haz mat suits
    7. no armed security personnel

    The last time I looked at one of those census maps with the different color dots on it about a half of the people in this city are of Asian descent. I parked on the street about a block away. If they had a surveillance camera that facially-recognized me more power to those shit eaters. I wonder what their preferred condiments are?

  42. @Jake
    Shouldn't the homeless be dying and nearly dying of Covid-19 in huge numbers?

    They have underlying issues, and they do not follow orders; nor do they have common sense.

    The homeless have fewer Chinese virus patient than the housed and employees. That’s because they are outside most of the time breathing fresh air, not cooped up with fellow workers breathing each other’s germs and viruses. Plus they get more virus killing sunshine than workers or those with homes.

    • Replies: @Clyde

    The homeless have fewer Chinese virus patient than the housed and employees. That’s because they are outside most of the time breathing fresh air, not cooped up with fellow workers breathing each other’s germs and viruses. Plus they get more virus killing sunshine than workers or those with homes.
     
    This is why all parks should be open. All beaches too. It is supremely evil and dumb to keep people cooped up and away from fresh air and sunshine. This virus wafts into the air and becomes meaningless in the outdoors. And I mean even Central Park in NYC if it becomes crowded on a nice spring day. Spring is here and thank God people are rebelling against the evil retard Democrat governors of some states. Michigan being the prime example right now. Jay Inslee (Washington) awful too.

    Power tripping Democrat Governors that are evil-dumb, are now adding to the familiar anarcho-tyranny. Idiocracy has arrived early in some states.
  43. @Steve Sailer
    The early data out of Northern Italy, Spain, UK, and NYC suggested that official coronavirus deaths were only a fraction, such as one half, of total excess mortality. One reason was often due to only counting deaths in hospitals as due to CV.

    Recently, counting methods have tended to change toward counting more CV deaths.

    Sure, but that means that we can’t look at excess mortality in general and attribute it to the virus’s direct biological effects vs our reaction to the presence of the virus.

    A) a person who died at home of viral pneumonia caused by Sars-cov-2

    B) a person who dies of a heart attack at home with no virus in his system “because” he’s been stressed out about the pandemic (or losing his job) etc.

    I’m all for counting A as a Covid-19 death, but the people quoted in Mr Anon’s article will also count excess death B as one as well. On the one hand, it is. He would not have died (this quarter) if Covid-19 weren’t around.

    However, i think B is actually collateral damage due to response and should be called out as such when the response is analysed*.

    *) and blame for the overreaction is allocated. Ok ok, “so we won’t do it again next time.”

    • Agree: UK, JosephB
  44. The factors are these.

    1. New unknown disease with no treatment or cure is spreading.

    2. Certain ‘marginalized’ populations disproportionately affected. Early victims are high profile. Tom Hanks, Prince Charles, NBA stars.

    3, Impeachment having failed, Demo presidential campaign peters out after Super Tuesday. Democrats realize Biden is incapable of conducting a traditional presidential campaign but Trump is.

    4. Machina Ex Deus is needed to defeat Trump.

    5. See #1

    • Replies: @Daniel Williams

    Certain ‘marginalized’ populations disproportionately affected. Early victims are high profile. Tom Hanks, Prince Charles, NBA stars.
     
    That’s crazy talk! Whoever heard of big stars like Cary Grant or Greta Garbo working behind the scenes to advance some kind of agenda?
  45. @Daniel Williams

    Coronavirus is the #1 cause of death in the U.S. right now.
     
    No it isn’t. Heart disease is. It kills hundreds of thousands of Americans a year.
    • LOL: LondonBob
    • Replies: @Daniel Williams
    There’s been an individual day or two when atomic warfare was the #1 killer of Japanese. And plane crashes of New Yorkers. It doesn’t mean what you appear to think it does.
  46. a good bet that a fairly-measured coronavirus fatality rate may even round to 0.0% (i.e., <0.05%).

    In Lombardy, there have been 11,851 deaths so far. If that .05% number is correct would translate to about 23,702,000 Lombards infected, which is interesting since there are only 10 million people in Lombardy.

    https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/world/europe/italy-coronavirus-cases.html

  47. @Daniel Williams

    Coronavirus is the #1 cause of death in the U.S. right now.
     
    No it isn’t. Heart disease is. It kills hundreds of thousands of Americans a year.

    That’s no longer true. On a daily basis, coronavirus took over the #1 spot sometime last week.

    • Replies: @Daniel Williams

    On a daily basis, coronavirus took over the #1 spot sometime last week.
     
    Not according to the Washington Post in this article published yesterday (4/16):

    They wrote:


    Covid-19 killed more people from April 6 to April 12 than any other cause of death except heart disease typically does in a normal April week.
     
    And it’s pretty obvious now that Coronavirus is not going to produce an annual number of deaths comparable to those caused by heart disease.
  48. @AnonAnon

    Silicon Valley has been surprisingly lightly hit for a place with a lot of contact with China and some of the earlier known infections in the U.S.
     
    Santa Clara, San Mateo, San Francisco counties are among the worst in California when it comes to case rate and/or death rate per 100,000. San Jose County is number two in deaths. https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/us/california-coronavirus-cases.html

    I looked at the county graph the NYSLIMES provided. It appears marijuana farming prevents China virus. Perhaps all the potassium or the enormous amounts of water kills the China flu virus.

    On the other hand, who believes anything in the Slimes?

  49. @Peter Frost
    assuming a two week lag between infection and death.

    That is not a reasonable assumption.

    That is not a reasonable assumption.

    I agree. It should be longer. At least one Diamond Princess fatality from the coronavirus took nearly two months from the time the infected man tested positive for the virus. I think half of the 14 deaths came more than a month after the cruise liner was first quarantined and passengers were isolated in their rooms. The last man to die from the DP cruise passed away on April 14th.

    • Replies: @unit472
    It is astonishing that there are more than 40 active cases still associated with the Diamond Princess. Its been two months since the infected were removed from the ship and hospitalized. At some point you need to fish or cut bait medically but... since a cause of death is necessary on a death certificate, and since legal liability is an issue, hospitals and or families, things can drag on far beyond what is medically necessary.
    , @UK
    Did he even have Chinavirus by the time he died?
  50. What is a group of lemmings called?

    • Replies: @Jus' Sayin'...
    A panic?
    , @englishmike
    A leap?
  51. @Daniel Williams

    So, we appear to have Flattened the Curve. Now what?
     
    Something tells me that whatever the answer is, it won’t include an apology to the millions of people whose lives have been puréed thanks to our big-brained masters, the experts who advised them, and the various models that have proven so accurate (no augury here—we’re a scientific people!) these last few months.

    it won’t include an apology to the millions of people whose lives have been puréed thanks to our big-brained masters, the experts who advised them, and the various models that have proven so accurate

    Would a non-apology apology be accepted? How about “I’m sorry you’re too dumb to grasp that the shutdowns were what prevented all the deaths we warned would happen without them?”

    I like the scare-italics around “models.” What have scientific models ever done for the world? You can’t think of anything, so the answer must be nothing.

    When I first watched Idiocracy, I thought it was funny, but had a hard time getting over how unrealistic the premise was. A world of morons would never appoint the smartest man alive to a government position thinking he will fix their problems. They’d just keep laughing at him.

    • Troll: Manfred Arcane, JosephB
    • Replies: @Daniel Williams

    I like the scare-italics around “models.”
     
    Bummed you didn’t get your apocalypse, huh? Finally get even with all those bullies?

    The best-case scenarios predicted by the models—the ones you still appear to think were accurate somehow—was 100K dead by now.

    Did that happen or not?

    Ever think that most of the so-called experts might be as mediocre as their jobs are you are at yours, or I am at mine?

    , @ken
    All the shutdowns did was prevent herd immunity and kill the economy. The further into this we get the more evidence is presented showing this flu to not be a 3% killer.
    , @William Badwhite

    “I’m sorry you’re too dumb to grasp
     

    Idiocracy, I thought it was funny, but had a hard time getting over how unrealistic the premise was. A world of morons
     
    Both you and Unz spend a remarkable amount of time calling people names rather than countering arguments.
  52. @Alexander Turok
    Coronavirus is the #1 cause of death in the U.S. right now. It's far deadlier than the flu. The problem is not people asking the questions, it's people refusing to listen to the answers.

    1) I didn’t say it wasn’t killing people.

    2) 8,000 Americans die every day on average. Just because Wuhan virus is the number one cause of death recently (at approximately 2000 deaths per day) doesn’t at all mean it’s close to causing most deaths. Learn to reason — it may help you in life.

    3) I believed the 1% fatality rate — wasn’t that expounded by many here? So to break it down slowly for you: 50000 to 80000 infected in Santa Clara County, California, suggests I should be seeing lots of dead people in Santa Clara County, California. New York City hospitals overflowing is not related to this. Problems in Michigan are not related to this. So again, where are the dead?

  53. So, we appear to have Flattened the Curve.

    Now what?

    Now that we’ve flattened the curve, the next step is to repatriate illegal aliens and put a stop to mass immigration.

    Steve has become weirdly silent about immigration.

    • Replies: @Known Fact
    Someone needs to do all the work while Americans are Staying Home and Saving Lives
  54. @Alden
    Good point. Except for purely cosmetic surgery, there’s no such thing as elective surgery.

    There are 3 kinds of surgery

    Cosmetic elective surgery
    Emergency surgery
    Necessary surgery that need not be done within a few days but does need to be done within a reasonable time before further damage or death results.

    Think of all the people whose hip and leg ligaments tendons and muscles and spines will deteriorate further because of unwise delay of hip and knee replacements?

    How many cardiac patients will die because surgery is delayed?

    How many people with macular deterioration will go blind because necessary treatment is delayed?

    How many medical practices will go bankrupt because of lack of customers? A medical practice is no different from any other business. No revenue, no customers, equals no paychecks and no bills paid.

    A medical practice is no different from any other business. No revenue, no customers, equals no paychecks and no bills paid.

    What bills need to be paid if they aren’t operating?

    • Replies: @Anon
    Rent?
    , @anon
    Salaries to doctors, nurses, and support personnel. Rents, supply contracts, utilities etc.
    Hospitals are losing money big time right now.
    , @NOTA
    Rent, interest on debt, salaries and benefits for any permanent employees, depreciation on expensive equipment, cost to replace perishable supplies that went bad during the shutdown, etc. A lot of small businesses will never reopen if they’re closed down with no revenue for a few months, and many others will just barely manage it.
  55. @Pincher Martin
    That's no longer true. On a daily basis, coronavirus took over the #1 spot sometime last week.

    On a daily basis, coronavirus took over the #1 spot sometime last week.

    Not according to the Washington Post in this article published yesterday (4/16):

    They wrote:

    Covid-19 killed more people from April 6 to April 12 than any other cause of death except heart disease typically does in a normal April week.

    And it’s pretty obvious now that Coronavirus is not going to produce an annual number of deaths comparable to those caused by heart disease.

    • Agree: Mark G.
    • Replies: @Pincher Martin

    Not according to the Washington Post in this article published yesterday (4/16):
     
    I read something different last week.

    But let's assume the WP is right. The trajectory for this virus, which has been in country for just a couple of months, is still in line to hit the #1 spot - even with 85 percent of the country under severe social distancing restrictions.

    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/EVzR2YlWoAA08ji.jpg


    And it’s pretty obvious now that Coronavirus is not going to produce an annual number of deaths comparable to those caused by heart disease.
     
    Again, that is only true because of the social distancing restrictions that have been put in place by most states. Even with those restrictions, 10,000 Americans have still died over the past five days. If that daily rate continues for a year (it won't - but let's pretend we did nothing about the spread of the virus), the number of dead would be over 700,000 - or slightly higher than the estimated 600,000+ Americans who die every year because of cancer and heart disease.
    , @Hail

    Washington Post in this article published yesterday (4/16) [...]:

    Covid-19 killed more people from April 6 to April 12 than any other cause of death except heart disease typically does in a normal April week.
     

     
    I assume this refers to all coronavirus-positive deaths; many would have died anyway.

    Alexander Turok wants unpatriotic people who ask too much questions (like the above) to wear Yellow Stars that say 'Corona Denier,' but it's a point worth repeating until we get answers. We have heard answers for other countries, and the effect is large.

  56. The infection rate is much higher because the virus was likely here long before they caught on.

    Iceland did a study and found that a significant percentage had been exposed.

    The death rate is far lower than the lying MSM would have you believe.

    And a recent German study concluded that casual transmission is unlikely, that transmission is from close and repeated contact, for instance in the same home with an infected individual, as opposed to casual contact in the supermarket.

    The other aspect that is rarely mentioned is that there are viruses all around us everyday, and generally our immune systems take care of the exposure as long as the viral load is low. Outside there is little chance of ingesting a viral load large enough to be problematic because a sneeze dissipates outside in trillions of cubic feet of air. However, inside the house with a sick family member you get repeated doses of the virus, a high viral load, at which point your immune system has a much harder time of fighting off the intruder. And if you’re old and weak it can do you in.

  57. @AnonAnon

    Silicon Valley has been surprisingly lightly hit for a place with a lot of contact with China and some of the earlier known infections in the U.S.
     
    Santa Clara, San Mateo, San Francisco counties are among the worst in California when it comes to case rate and/or death rate per 100,000. San Jose County is number two in deaths. https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/us/california-coronavirus-cases.html

    That’s to be expected. California as a whole is doing pretty well, but the hardest hit areas are to be expected. The denser urban areas filled with heterogenous populations who are constantly on the move and do a lot of business overseas.

    But compare San Francisco to New York City. SF is the second densest city in America, after NYC, with a population over 250,000.

    Also like New York City, San Francisco has a large percentage of its working population which commutes to work via mass transit, whether by BART, ferry or bus. This makes it very different from San Diego, LA, and San Jose, which are cities in which the vast majority of people commute to work in their cars.

    Yet to date, SF has only 1,000 cases and 20 deaths.

    NYC has at least 120,000 cases and at least 8,000 deaths. And both those numbers are most likely very low. San Francisco’s numbers are also low, but probably a more accurate a gauge of what is happening in that city than NYC’s numbers are an accurate gauge of what is happening there.

    Even accounting for the fact that NYC is more densely populated than SF (27,800 per square mile compared to 17,250 per square mile) and about ten times as large (8 million in population compared to 800K), the difference between those two cities’ coronavirus numbers is shocking.

    • Replies: @unit472
    It is an interesting point but I would answer 'horses for courses'. A commuter using Muni, Bart or a company bus in SF to get to work could be expected to have showered, shaved or put on make up and clean clothes sometime in the previous 24 hours before boarding mass transit. It might be a bit different in NYC.
    , @Steve Sailer
    Stanford has signed up to do a study with 10,000 people affiliated with Major League Baseball (players, front office employees, family members) to get some numbers from all around the country.
  58. @Pincher Martin

    That is not a reasonable assumption.
     
    I agree. It should be longer. At least one Diamond Princess fatality from the coronavirus took nearly two months from the time the infected man tested positive for the virus. I think half of the 14 deaths came more than a month after the cruise liner was first quarantined and passengers were isolated in their rooms. The last man to die from the DP cruise passed away on April 14th.

    It is astonishing that there are more than 40 active cases still associated with the Diamond Princess. Its been two months since the infected were removed from the ship and hospitalized. At some point you need to fish or cut bait medically but… since a cause of death is necessary on a death certificate, and since legal liability is an issue, hospitals and or families, things can drag on far beyond what is medically necessary.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    What kind of medical care are the 40 Diamond Princess patients who aren't recovered or dead getting? Two aspirin and call me in the morning or are they on a tube?

    I've always been concerned about the fair number of people who don't die but require hospitalization.

  59. Anyway, this valuable new data suggest that Case Fatality Rates aren’t all that high (absent hospitals being overwhelmed), but Herd Immunity is still a long way off.

    This whole concept of herd immunity needs some serious criticism. As I have been saying for awhile now, the herd is already immune with or without antibodies. If it were not so, the herd would already be sick. We are exposed to viruses all the time, and most of them are cleared from the system without going through the expedient of a full blown immunological response that results in the production of antibodies. The various grades of infection are:

    0. Never infected.
    1. Infected, aymptomatic, no antibodies.
    2. Infected, asymptomatic, antibodies
    3. Infected, symptomatic, antibodies.

    Everybody forgets about number one and goes directly from zero to two and three, and this frames the whole herd immunity debate. There is an extra step in there that gets routinely ignored.

    We have pretty much all been exposed to this already. Every country is following a similar curve regardless of when, whether, and what social distancing measures were adopted. The increasing case numbers are entirely an artifact of the greater number of tests administered. The death counts are being pulled out of statistical noise. Gross excess deaths are not materializing.

    Covid-19 is a real virus, but this pandemic is not a real pandemic. It is being manufactured out of questionable statistics, mass media propaganda, and the iatrogenic effects of the lockdowns themselves. It is time to close the book on this hysteria.

    • Replies: @jsm

    The death counts are being pulled out of statistical noise. Gross excess deaths are not materializing.
     
    Could you give the cite for this? I need it for an argument I'm having.
  60. @Anonymous (n)
    If the true mortality rate is on par with the flu, then how does one explain the deluge of deaths and hospitalizations experienced in epicenters like Northern Italy and NYC? I personally know physicians working in NYC and they are adamant what they are experiencing is an absolute nightmare that bears no comparison to the flu whatsoever.

    Because the mortality rate is separate from the infection rate for all but the most deadly diseases.

    The flu appears to spread much more slowly than the Wuhan virus. Imagine if everyone in America got the flu at the exact same time. If you collapsed all the deaths from a bad flu season into one month it would be very rough indeed. Which is exactly what we are seeing now.

    That is very different than saying if you get the virus you are much more likely to die than if you get the flu.

    And the Wuhan virus may certainly be deadlier on average than the flu to an individual, but the factor certainly appears to be trending down from 10 or 20 times deadlier as first estimated, to perhaps a few.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    The R0 for the typical winter flu is around 1.3. Nobody knows what the R0 is for this without extraordinary distancing, but it's clearly much higher.
    , @Anonymous (n)
    You have people in their 50s and 60s dying by the dozen in the same hospital day after day. The flu simply doesn't decimate middle aged people in this fashion. It's a freak occurrence for a hospital to have a single flu death in a relatively healthy person during the entire flu season, yet here we have hundreds succumbing per day in a single city. It does not add up to merely a compressed flu season no matter how you slice it.
  61. @Alexander Turok
    The funny thing is that, in normal circumstances, the electorate "rallies around the flag" when their nation is in crisis. The incumbent gets a bump. He doesn't even need to handle it well, just look like he's taking it seriously. But Trump is too dumb to see that. He thinks those voters in Michigan are gonna lynch him if the Dow falls.

    And he will lose.

    No voters in Michigan are going to lynch the governor once money for food and rent runs out. Trump is irrelevant.

    • Replies: @Alexander Turok
    Voters in Michigan will keep collecting unemployment. I know you can't imagine any alternative to wagin'. Others can.

    Trump won in 2016 on a populist message. He decided to abandon it for The Dow. He will lose, and he'll deserve to lose.
  62. @Pincher Martin

    That is not a reasonable assumption.
     
    I agree. It should be longer. At least one Diamond Princess fatality from the coronavirus took nearly two months from the time the infected man tested positive for the virus. I think half of the 14 deaths came more than a month after the cruise liner was first quarantined and passengers were isolated in their rooms. The last man to die from the DP cruise passed away on April 14th.

    Did he even have Chinavirus by the time he died?

    • Replies: @Pincher Martin

    Did he even have Chinavirus by the time he died?
     
    I assumed the reason for the long delay between his positive test and his death was because he was one of the many passengers who initially tested asymptomatic, but later developed the obvious telltale signs of fever and a cough. But I can't be sure because the source is in Japanese, not English.
  63. @Pincher Martin
    That's to be expected. California as a whole is doing pretty well, but the hardest hit areas are to be expected. The denser urban areas filled with heterogenous populations who are constantly on the move and do a lot of business overseas.

    But compare San Francisco to New York City. SF is the second densest city in America, after NYC, with a population over 250,000.

    Also like New York City, San Francisco has a large percentage of its working population which commutes to work via mass transit, whether by BART, ferry or bus. This makes it very different from San Diego, LA, and San Jose, which are cities in which the vast majority of people commute to work in their cars.

    Yet to date, SF has only 1,000 cases and 20 deaths.

    NYC has at least 120,000 cases and at least 8,000 deaths. And both those numbers are most likely very low. San Francisco's numbers are also low, but probably a more accurate a gauge of what is happening in that city than NYC's numbers are an accurate gauge of what is happening there.

    Even accounting for the fact that NYC is more densely populated than SF (27,800 per square mile compared to 17,250 per square mile) and about ten times as large (8 million in population compared to 800K), the difference between those two cities' coronavirus numbers is shocking.

    It is an interesting point but I would answer ‘horses for courses’. A commuter using Muni, Bart or a company bus in SF to get to work could be expected to have showered, shaved or put on make up and clean clothes sometime in the previous 24 hours before boarding mass transit. It might be a bit different in NYC.

    • Replies: @Pincher Martin
    You may be the first person I've heard argue that BART is relatively clean. I didn't take it regularly when I lived n SF, but that's not been my experience. Homeless people and drug addicts haunt some of its stations.
    , @Alden
    A person with an infectious respiratory disease will infect others on the bus no matter how clean he is. Just as he’ll infect others at school or workplace.
  64. @Steve Sailer
    Doubling time of official confirmed cases in Santa Clara County is currently 21.3 days. Official cases have increased from about 1100 on April 3 to 1870 on April 17.

    Santa Clara County is one of the brighter spots in the country in terms of the trajectory.

    That Santa Clara “bright spot” has infections increasing 3-4% per day using your numbers.

    R0>1.0 is indicated because the numbers are going up week over week and not down.

    There are probably 50,000 infections in Santa Clara (not the detected 1800)

    Your chance of meeting an infected person at random is probably 1-in-30 in Santa Clara

    Santa Clara is a real “bright spot”

    Visit Santa Clara to meet Ron Unz, publisher of the Unz report or whatever it’s called!

  65. One man’s “herd immunity” is another man’s “cytokine storm.”

  66. @vhrm
    Santa Clara county reports 69 total deaths today, two weeks after the study's sample. With



    These prevalence estimates represent a range between 48,000 and 81,000 people infected in Santa Clara County by early April
     

     
    That's 0.09% to 0.14% IFR which is solidly in the flu camp.

    However, to get to NYC's 8k -12k deaths with that IFR it would mean everyone in NYC (~9m people) already has had it. Or at least anyone who would die of it, already has had it. That seems unlikely.

    Or NYC is cooking the books a bit. A hate to get into that because it takes us away from hard numbers, but the financial, and political, incentive is there. They just added 3700 back dated deaths.

    Or maybe they’re not. And NYC is just hit really hard for a multitude of reasons. I’m sure that tucked within the flu’s normal 0.1% rate is set of varying numbers all over the country. On average Pennsylvania is probably hit harder with the flu than New Mexico. And at the end of the day it averages out to 0.1%.

    So that means NYC is going through a rough time. Most of the country isn’t. At the end of the day, if the numbers are reliable, the average for the whole country will come out. It won’t truly reflect the acute hardship of NYC nor the relative ease Florida is having.

    • Replies: @William Badwhite

    Or NYC is cooking the books a bit.
     
    Jeffery Epstein died of CV.
  67. @Pincher Martin
    That's to be expected. California as a whole is doing pretty well, but the hardest hit areas are to be expected. The denser urban areas filled with heterogenous populations who are constantly on the move and do a lot of business overseas.

    But compare San Francisco to New York City. SF is the second densest city in America, after NYC, with a population over 250,000.

    Also like New York City, San Francisco has a large percentage of its working population which commutes to work via mass transit, whether by BART, ferry or bus. This makes it very different from San Diego, LA, and San Jose, which are cities in which the vast majority of people commute to work in their cars.

    Yet to date, SF has only 1,000 cases and 20 deaths.

    NYC has at least 120,000 cases and at least 8,000 deaths. And both those numbers are most likely very low. San Francisco's numbers are also low, but probably a more accurate a gauge of what is happening in that city than NYC's numbers are an accurate gauge of what is happening there.

    Even accounting for the fact that NYC is more densely populated than SF (27,800 per square mile compared to 17,250 per square mile) and about ten times as large (8 million in population compared to 800K), the difference between those two cities' coronavirus numbers is shocking.

    Stanford has signed up to do a study with 10,000 people affiliated with Major League Baseball (players, front office employees, family members) to get some numbers from all around the country.

  68. @varsicule

    Strikingly, this didn’t happen so much by expanding medical care supply as by depressing medical care demand
     
    No kidding. If you know anyone who works at a hospital, you will know that the lockdown recession has paradoxically hit healthcare as well. So many are getting furloughed or having their hours cut. I guess we solved the Great American Nurse Shortage.

    BTW, where can I go and look at cool analytic dashboards that show how many people will die as a result of "elective" procedures being put on hold indefinitely?

    COVID-19 patients tend to be “cost centers” for hospitals rather than “profit centers.”

    The big money for hospitals is in expensive surgeries. They can’t afford to be be “convalescent homes” which is what COVID-19 patient support tends to require.

    I wonder how much profit there is for hospitals in unnecessary surgeries such as “gender” reassignment?

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    Ten days or so on a ventilator in ICU with round the clock nursing likely costs the hospital vastly more than $39,000.
    , @Alden
    I’m pretty sure gender re assignment surgery can be done in offices and those office, not hospital, surgery centers. Most of it is hormone pills and injections.

    The Dr who invented the turn the penis into a vaginaish insertion into the groin muscles was unlicensed been kicked out of the profession. He figured it out and did it in his house. I think abortion was legal by then. So the Drs who’d lost their licenses had to figure out some other way to Make a living. The testucle remover instrument is the same thing they use for animals. No need for a hospital surgery room.

    Might not need general anesthesia. There’s lots of meds that prevent feeling the surgery but you’re completely awake. I’ve had some for eye surgery. Totally awake and aware as she was cutting my eyeballs. But no pain.

    It’s a total violation of weirdos civil rights to postpone their tranny surgery. Expect lawsuits soon because it’s all Trump’s fault.
  69. @Mr. Anon

    But now we are up from 499 deaths to 31,647 deaths.
     
    But exactly how many of them are due to COVID-19, how many are people who would have otherwise died anyway who happened to have SARS-COV-2, and how many were caused by the Lockdown:

    https://archive.is/2eKCW#selection-743.0-755.126

    England and Wales have experienced a record number of deaths in a single week, with 6,000 more than average for this time of year. Only half of those extra numbers were attributed to the coronavirus. Experts said they were shocked by the rise, particularly in non-Covid-19 deaths, and expressed concern that the lockdown might be having unintended consequences for people’s health. There are fears that patients are not seeking help for life-threatening conditions, including heart attacks, because they are worried about catching coronavirus in hospital. Experts said that conditions such as diabetes or high blood pressure may also be proving harder to manage during the lockdown.
     

    ‘Tis an evil virus indeed which can kill so many without even infecting them.

  70. @Coemgen
    COVID-19 patients tend to be "cost centers" for hospitals rather than "profit centers."

    The big money for hospitals is in expensive surgeries. They can't afford to be be "convalescent homes" which is what COVID-19 patient support tends to require.

    I wonder how much profit there is for hospitals in unnecessary surgeries such as "gender" reassignment?

    Ten days or so on a ventilator in ICU with round the clock nursing likely costs the hospital vastly more than $39,000.

    • Replies: @Je Suis Omar Mateen
    "Ten days or so on a ventilator in ICU with round the clock nursing likely costs the hospital vastly more than $39,000."

    Retroactively designating every stiff a "death by kungfluey" at $13,000 a pop is, however, very lucrative indeed - this incentive alone is driving up the body count.

    What percent of these 13Ka-ching diagnoses are fake? 50%, 75%, 90%? We will never know. The data sets are polluted - by design.
    , @Polynikes
    But they’re being ordered to take no other cases. So 39,000 dollars is more than 0. Or more than they’ll get from insurance or private payment if it’s not classified as covid 19.
  71. @XYZ (no Mr.)
    Because the mortality rate is separate from the infection rate for all but the most deadly diseases.

    The flu appears to spread much more slowly than the Wuhan virus. Imagine if everyone in America got the flu at the exact same time. If you collapsed all the deaths from a bad flu season into one month it would be very rough indeed. Which is exactly what we are seeing now.

    That is very different than saying if you get the virus you are much more likely to die than if you get the flu.

    And the Wuhan virus may certainly be deadlier on average than the flu to an individual, but the factor certainly appears to be trending down from 10 or 20 times deadlier as first estimated, to perhaps a few.

    The R0 for the typical winter flu is around 1.3. Nobody knows what the R0 is for this without extraordinary distancing, but it’s clearly much higher.

    • Replies: @TomSchmidt
    This spreads faster, so we locked down to keep it from generating so many cases that the healthcare system got overloaded. Even in NYC, the system has bent, but not broken. Time to let more people get infected yet?

    Of course, current death totals in NYC are 8893. If it's a .1% killer, then everyone is infected.
  72. @unit472
    It is astonishing that there are more than 40 active cases still associated with the Diamond Princess. Its been two months since the infected were removed from the ship and hospitalized. At some point you need to fish or cut bait medically but... since a cause of death is necessary on a death certificate, and since legal liability is an issue, hospitals and or families, things can drag on far beyond what is medically necessary.

    What kind of medical care are the 40 Diamond Princess patients who aren’t recovered or dead getting? Two aspirin and call me in the morning or are they on a tube?

    I’ve always been concerned about the fair number of people who don’t die but require hospitalization.

  73. @Alexander Turok
    What do you think of my idea to selectively end the shutdown? People can stop isolating themselves so long as they agree to two conditions:

    1. Agree that if they do get sick with corona or some disease that looks like it could be corona, they will renounce their right to all medical care more serious than CVS Health Day & Night Cold + Flu Plus Softgels, whether they have insurance or not, whether they have the ability to pay or not, and that if they try to renege on this they will be criminally prosecuted.

    2. Agree to wear a special symbol on their clothing so that others can distinguish them from responsible people who go out once a month to buy needed supplies or work jobs which must be done, and agree that others have an absolute right to discriminate against them, such as by refusing to hire them, refusing to allow them to use their stores, segregating them within, etc., for the remainder of the pandemic. I suggest the symbol be a pinhead.

    You are channelling Cuthbert Rumbold.

  74. @UK
    Did he even have Chinavirus by the time he died?

    Did he even have Chinavirus by the time he died?

    I assumed the reason for the long delay between his positive test and his death was because he was one of the many passengers who initially tested asymptomatic, but later developed the obvious telltale signs of fever and a cough. But I can’t be sure because the source is in Japanese, not English.

  75. @Kyle
    No voters in Michigan are going to lynch the governor once money for food and rent runs out. Trump is irrelevant.

    Voters in Michigan will keep collecting unemployment. I know you can’t imagine any alternative to wagin’. Others can.

    Trump won in 2016 on a populist message. He decided to abandon it for The Dow. He will lose, and he’ll deserve to lose.

    • Replies: @Meretricious
    I don't mind Trump losing.
    I mind Biden winning.
    , @Manfred Arcane
    OK, newest Doomer. I don't know if you're from the Alt-Reich branch or the Antifa branch of Doomerism, but both branches keep pushing this "die for the dow" nonsense, and I am sick of it. Trump is not trying to save "the dow" by pushing back against the Corona Panic Shutdown--he's trying to save people's jobs, more of which are being lost every day because of the disgraceful Doomer hysteria of you and your kind. Most people need jobs because they have to, like, provide for their families and stuff, and to most ordinary people, being unable to do stuff like that is a lot scarier than the possibility of getting a virus with a fatality rate not much worse than that of the flu. Trying to make sure that people can keep their jobs is about as populist as it gets, and trying to force the populace to live like cringing, welfare-dependent bugmen--which you Doomers want--is about as anti-populist as it gets.
    , @botazefa
    "Voters in Michigan will keep collecting unemployment"

    For 20 weeks: https://eligibility.com/unemployment/michigan-mi-unemployment-benefits

    My my count, that means Michiganers will be running out of benefits just in time for the election. Who do you think they are likely to blame for their predicament? Trump?
  76. Remember “stagflation”?

    What would “stagfection” look like?

  77. @Daniel Williams

    On a daily basis, coronavirus took over the #1 spot sometime last week.
     
    Not according to the Washington Post in this article published yesterday (4/16):

    They wrote:


    Covid-19 killed more people from April 6 to April 12 than any other cause of death except heart disease typically does in a normal April week.
     
    And it’s pretty obvious now that Coronavirus is not going to produce an annual number of deaths comparable to those caused by heart disease.

    Not according to the Washington Post in this article published yesterday (4/16):

    I read something different last week.

    But let’s assume the WP is right. The trajectory for this virus, which has been in country for just a couple of months, is still in line to hit the #1 spot – even with 85 percent of the country under severe social distancing restrictions.

    And it’s pretty obvious now that Coronavirus is not going to produce an annual number of deaths comparable to those caused by heart disease.

    Again, that is only true because of the social distancing restrictions that have been put in place by most states. Even with those restrictions, 10,000 Americans have still died over the past five days. If that daily rate continues for a year (it won’t – but let’s pretend we did nothing about the spread of the virus), the number of dead would be over 700,000 – or slightly higher than the estimated 600,000+ Americans who die every year because of cancer and heart disease.

    • Replies: @Polynikes

    Again, that is only true because of the social distancing restrictions that have been put in place by most states.
     
    There’s little evidence for that, at least in terms of lockdowns. Steve posted the Chinese study that indicates keeping people at home may be increasing the spread.
    , @TomSchmidt
    "Again, that is only true because of the social distancing restrictions that have been put in place by most states."

    I guess the drop in Sweden is also due to the social distancing measures they put in place?
    https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/sweden/
    http://www.euromomo.eu/

    Nasty spike, with deaths 8stDev above the normal death rate (not as bad as locked-down UK, of course).
    , @Jus' Sayin'...

    "Again, that is only true because of the social distancing restrictions that have been put in place by most states."
     
    This argument reminds me of the story about the Vermonter whose neighbors complain to the sheriff that he's filled his yard with sheep dung and the smell is unbearable. The sheriff pays a visit and asks the man why he's created this smelly public nuisance. The man tells him that he does it to keep tigers away. The sheriff scratches his head and asks the man if he really thinks sheep dung keeps tigers away. The man responds, "Do you see any tigers around here?"
  78. Anonymous[427] • Disclaimer says:
    @Whiskey
    It would be better than this. More than half of LA County adults are unemployed. National unemployment is 25% and over 17 million are unemployed.

    Small business is extinct. Permanently. Period.

    And President Stacey Abrams has her GET YT plan ready to go. Since Biden is a slam dunk and she is his running mate.

    Camps for Whitey will be opening soon. Gavin Newsome has plans. Jello Biafra tried to warn you.

    Small business is extinct. Permanently. Period.

    No, small business is never extinct. Even in the Soviet Union where it was outright illegal, there were small businesses.

    But small business is inherently ephemeral. People start them, and wind them up. By nature, it’s a rough way to make a living. Conservatives and the GOP constantly promote and aggrandize small business when in truth, a lot of people have no business being in business for themselves and do much better as employees in a paternalistic corporation with benefits.

    The fifties, sixties and seventies were the golden era of being a working class schlub because a 100 IQ guy could get a union job, or a nonunion job from a plant that paid more to keep the union out, with a defined benefit pension plan (because even most white people can not plan very well for their future-let alone blacks and mestizos) and healthcare. A lot of people sent their kids through college largely or wholly on their dime, bought little vacation houses and boats and even airplanes, and had comfortable retirements who in their own businesses would have made a major cock-up of it and died penniless.

    Even bigger businesses fail more often than they succeed. Apple started small and are now the biggest business on planet, but look at Commodore, look at Gateway 2000, look at all the high flying workstation companies of the late 80s. Look at all the dead retailers, the dead restaurant chains.

    The mill hunkies and Polacks in my family who worked in Chicago-Republic Steel, IH Wisconsin Steel, USS South Works-had good lives and are all dead now, but most of them died happier than their kids,most of them became engineers and accountants and such and had decent lives and families but they worked 70, 80 hour weeks, they had more stuff but their kids in turn went to shit as often as not due to a total lack of parental attention.

    If people need encouragement to start their own businesses, they shouldn’t be starting their own businesses-it’s a pretty good rule. The GOP of the Chamber of Commerce needs to die, worse than the Democrats do. We need to rig the system so if you want to make a lot of money and have the capacity for hard smart work, the drive and the ruthlessness you can, but you have to be a net asset and not a net liability to Joe Average. Offshoring manufacturing needs to be made unprofitable or marginally profitable. The FIRE sector needs trimming down to size.

    It won’t happen, of course, because in the long run the Empire is doomed and there is going to be an enormous upheaval. And in the short run, Joe Average is too naive, too unorganized, too bovine to do what needs doing.

    • Thanks: Neoconned
    • Replies: @Intelligent Dasein
    One of the better all around comments of late. You should pick a screen name.
    , @Reg Cæsar
    So you want us to be Sweden, or Japan. Big businesses, big taxes, big loopholes. The zaibatsu life.
    , @Pericles

    Even bigger businesses fail more often than they succeed. Apple started small and are now the biggest business on planet, but look at Commodore, look at Gateway 2000, look at all the high flying workstation companies of the late 80s. Look at all the dead retailers, the dead restaurant chains.

     

    Apple had a near death experience in 1997 and survived because of a loan from Microsoft. Possibly because the latter would otherwise have looked even more like a monopolist.

    https://www.wired.com/2009/08/dayintech-0806/
    , @Anonymous
    A good comment. Thanks for posting.
    , @Russ

    Conservatives and the GOP constantly promote and aggrandize small business when in truth, a lot of people have no business being in business for themselves and do much better as employees in a paternalistic corporation with benefits.
     
    Very salient point in a great overall comment. Some are just better suited to working the nuances of the large corporation.
    , @TomSchmidt
    Excellent comment. Pick a name, as Intelligent dasein said.
  79. @unit472
    It is an interesting point but I would answer 'horses for courses'. A commuter using Muni, Bart or a company bus in SF to get to work could be expected to have showered, shaved or put on make up and clean clothes sometime in the previous 24 hours before boarding mass transit. It might be a bit different in NYC.

    You may be the first person I’ve heard argue that BART is relatively clean. I didn’t take it regularly when I lived n SF, but that’s not been my experience. Homeless people and drug addicts haunt some of its stations.

    • Replies: @Marty
    Yeah, I was once in BART’s Civic Center station when a homeless guy wearing an AIDS quilt tried to bear-hug me. When I repelled him, he said, “I’m SO glad you did that.” As for shaving, I can’t even. Somewhere in the early ‘00’s, people in SF decided they wanted to look like they’d stepped out of a R. Crumb strip. Blacks view BART cars as their living room, and routinely chow down. Once I stepped onto a car in Oakland with only two people on it, a black dude and his girlfriend. The stench of McDonald’s drove me off, and as I ducked out he yelled, “oh it’s like that, huh?”
  80. @Steve Sailer
    But if everybody over a certain age is playing Russian Roulette with 1 bullet in a 100 chamber revolver, how vibrant is the economy going to be?

    Based on this new study, what population is that, which faces a 1% chance of dying from Corona? Is that population’s risk from influenza any less than 1%?

  81. This study is probably bullshit. Two reasons.

    First, the kits have a false positive rate that could account for half of their positives. Also the number of ground truth negative samples was so low the confidence interval on their false positive rate is so great that it could account for all or none of their positive results.

    Second, the sample was selected from a sample of people recruited off a Facebook ad. Are people who have a had a viral illness recently more likely to be motivated enough to go get tested? I’d say probably. If that is the case, then the measured rate of positivity is off by some unknown amount corresponding to that systematic bias. Also, they extrapolate the rate for the whole population based off a demographic adjustment that may or may not be statistically justified. I.e. they got more white women proportionally than live in Santa Clara County then made adjustments to the inferred rate based off the small samples of underrepresented demographics. But of course since those samples of minority groups were small to begin with they were underpowered to tell if the measured rates were accurate in the first place. It’s pretty suspect to me to measure 1.5% positive and say that implies 3% of people have had it.

    Anyways Ioaniddis clearly has had it in his head from the beginning that this is a nothing burger. If his IFR is correct it suggests that the prevalence in NYC is around 125%

  82. @Alexander Turok
    The funny thing is that, in normal circumstances, the electorate "rallies around the flag" when their nation is in crisis. The incumbent gets a bump. He doesn't even need to handle it well, just look like he's taking it seriously. But Trump is too dumb to see that. He thinks those voters in Michigan are gonna lynch him if the Dow falls.

    And he will lose.

    “Trump is too dumb to see that. He thinks those voters in Michigan are gonna lynch him if the Dow falls.”

    It is obvious to everyone that Democratic governors colluded to interfere with the results of the 2020 election after it was clear that a child-sniffing pederast in the throes of stage-three Alzheimer’s is the Democratic nominee.

    The data from Europe prove kungflu is a mild virus. The debate is over.

    #CoronaHoax

    • Agree: Manfred Arcane, Hail
    • Replies: @NOTA
    You mean the data from Northern Italy?
  83. Anonymous[165] • Disclaimer says:
    @Anonymous (n)
    If the true mortality rate is on par with the flu, then how does one explain the deluge of deaths and hospitalizations experienced in epicenters like Northern Italy and NYC? I personally know physicians working in NYC and they are adamant what they are experiencing is an absolute nightmare that bears no comparison to the flu whatsoever.

    A lower fatality rate would be consistent with more hospitalizations if corona were more contagious than the flu. Which it appears to be.

  84. @Alexander Turok
    And if coronavirus keeps it up, it'll kill even more:

    https://www.healthleadersmedia.com/welcome-ad?toURL=/covid-19/coronavirus-becomes-number-one-cause-death-day-us-surpassing-heart-disease-and-cancer

    There’s been an individual day or two when atomic warfare was the #1 killer of Japanese. And plane crashes of New Yorkers. It doesn’t mean what you appear to think it does.

    • Replies: @Alexander Turok
    I can't help it if you aren't bright enough to see the difference.
  85. @Steve Sailer
    The early data out of Northern Italy, Spain, UK, and NYC suggested that official coronavirus deaths were only a fraction, such as one half, of total excess mortality. One reason was often due to only counting deaths in hospitals as due to CV.

    Recently, counting methods have tended to change toward counting more CV deaths.

    One of the very first topics discussed with my new urologist when discussing my PSA count was that way, way, way fewer men died from a cancer originating in the prostate than died with a cancer originating in the prostate (since characteristically most such cancers were not of a sort that would metastasize). This was clearly done to minimize panic, and to frame requests for any more invasive testing procedures than the blood test by which PSA count was obtained. I have gone through subsequent forms of testing, and although the importance of continued vigilance is crystal clear, the avoidance of undue anxiety was a high value to this physician throughout. So far, no worrying signs have been identified despite the ratcheting up of testing, and the professionalism exhibited by my urologist throughout is confirmed.

    The difference from the handling of this issue by my urologist to the, to my mind, clear panic-mongering of the “experts” such as Fauci & Co. could scarcely be more stark. Whatever panicking induced in the population which seemed appropriate to them has been arguably related to their unforgivable ineptitude (or turpitude if they were persuaded to serve an agenda of some other powerful lobby such as Big Pharma lusting after a fantastically lucrative cash flow from a projected, but not yet developed, vaccine…) in not being prepared to effectively respond to the real possibility of the advent of the long-threatened deadly global pandemic toward which the arc of their careers supposedly equipped them, and which preparation should have justified the public trust (and more importantly, the trust of President Trump as his advisors) in them.

    Frankly, I’m not seeing it. One could argue persuasively that the Chinese – out of embarassment, or malice – obscured the potential of the outbreak, and led the CDC and others to fail to act with dispatch to enlist the assistance of all of those, public or private, available with the expertise to properly assess the threat, and explore all avenues for minimization of infections, or for identification of treatments for those afflicted. But for whatever reasons, the reaction was unfocused, and the “experts” panicked in result of this. And here we are, with little in the way of epidemiological coherence, lots of ass covering, and very serious economic and social consequences with which to deal.

    Twice in my personal experience, either bad judgment or bad execution by supposed medical professionals has jeopardized my life and now, absent reliable assurance on both accounts, I am certainly justified in having a high degree of skepticism.

    I trust my urologist; his counsel and expertise have secured my confidence. But could I say the same for these guys? No, I can’t say that it has.

    • Thanks: Joseph Doaks
  86. @Steve Sailer
    Ten days or so on a ventilator in ICU with round the clock nursing likely costs the hospital vastly more than $39,000.

    “Ten days or so on a ventilator in ICU with round the clock nursing likely costs the hospital vastly more than $39,000.”

    Retroactively designating every stiff a “death by kungfluey” at $13,000 a pop is, however, very lucrative indeed – this incentive alone is driving up the body count.

    What percent of these 13Ka-ching diagnoses are fake? 50%, 75%, 90%? We will never know. The data sets are polluted – by design.

  87. @Hail

    Where exactly are the dead?
     
    Be careful with impudent questions like that, XYZ. You'll get labeled a Krazy Korona Hoaxer by certain parties.

    Be careful with impudent questions like that, XYZ. You’ll get labeled a Krazy Korona Hoaxer by certain parties.

    Not really. But the commenter you endorsed does have problems with multiplication, and since you didn’t notice, perhaps you do as well.

    • Replies: @XYZ (no Mr.)
    You've never had a problem pushing wildly inflated death estimates before....why give me grief, Ron?

    As you have said, this ain't global warming, we'll see who is right soon enough.
  88. @Alexander Turok

    it won’t include an apology to the millions of people whose lives have been puréed thanks to our big-brained masters, the experts who advised them, and the various models that have proven so accurate
     
    Would a non-apology apology be accepted? How about "I'm sorry you're too dumb to grasp that the shutdowns were what prevented all the deaths we warned would happen without them?"

    I like the scare-italics around "models." What have scientific models ever done for the world? You can't think of anything, so the answer must be nothing.

    When I first watched Idiocracy, I thought it was funny, but had a hard time getting over how unrealistic the premise was. A world of morons would never appoint the smartest man alive to a government position thinking he will fix their problems. They'd just keep laughing at him.

    I like the scare-italics around “models.”

    Bummed you didn’t get your apocalypse, huh? Finally get even with all those bullies?

    The best-case scenarios predicted by the models—the ones you still appear to think were accurate somehow—was 100K dead by now.

    Did that happen or not?

    Ever think that most of the so-called experts might be as mediocre as their jobs are you are at yours, or I am at mine?

    • Replies: @Alexander Turok
    Source?
    , @Anonymous
    "Bummed you didn’t get your apocalypse, huh? Finally get even with all those bullies?"

    There's a fitting symmetry between SJWs and the Infowars crowd which is infesting and destroying the HBDSphere. SJWs appeal to the rage of the thots that so much money is flowing into Silicon Valley. After all, they grew up with a belief that they are naturally superior to those "creepy nerds," so it's a huge social injustice that many of them have more money than they do. The Infowars crowd appeals to similar resentments. Remember the sixteen-year-old who thought he was the King of Coolness because he stole his uncle's beer and stumbled around the suburb drunk? Well, twenty years later, he rages that the "nerds" he once looked down on have more money than him. But while the SJWs make at least semi-coherent demands, for affirmative action jobs and the like, the Infowars man just launches into these incoherent rants. He rants against science, against rationality, sometimes against secularism.(Though he won't listen to clerics either, as he sees them as just another variety of nerd.)

    This isn't to say that you can't criticize the "bugmen." I live in Silicon Valley, I see plenty of weak, cuckolded male feminists here. But the fat middle American who waves the flag, believes in corporate tax cuts, and cheers the neocon wars is really no better.
  89. @Pincher Martin
    You may be the first person I've heard argue that BART is relatively clean. I didn't take it regularly when I lived n SF, but that's not been my experience. Homeless people and drug addicts haunt some of its stations.

    Yeah, I was once in BART’s Civic Center station when a homeless guy wearing an AIDS quilt tried to bear-hug me. When I repelled him, he said, “I’m SO glad you did that.” As for shaving, I can’t even. Somewhere in the early ‘00’s, people in SF decided they wanted to look like they’d stepped out of a R. Crumb strip. Blacks view BART cars as their living room, and routinely chow down. Once I stepped onto a car in Oakland with only two people on it, a black dude and his girlfriend. The stench of McDonald’s drove me off, and as I ducked out he yelled, “oh it’s like that, huh?”

    • LOL: Pincher Martin
  90. These are certainly interesting results, but I’d make several points:

    (1) The claim is that Santa Clara County actually had 48K-81K infections as of two weeks ago, and currently has 73 deaths, suggesting an IFR of 0.10%-0.15%. But the infection-to-death period is generally three weeks and often runs considerably longer, as shown from the South Korea data. So we really should look at the total deaths a week or two from now, which may be substantially larger.

    (2) I’m not entirely sure how representative a sample you’d get from Facebook ads. Perhaps older/sicker people wouldn’t be as likely to respond. Are people in nursing homes on Facebook?

    (3) The death rate most widely quoted had been 1%, which is what I’d generally assumed. But as of a few days ago, I’d been persuaded by the supposedly very large number of asymptomatic Iceland infections that the correct figure might be considerably lower, perhaps IFR=0.5%. So these SC results seem extreme, but not totally outlandish to me.

    (4) Anyway, as someone already mentioned, consider NY. Deaths are currently running 1000/day and should very soon hit 20K total, probably a substantial underestimate based on that “excess death” analysis in the NYT. The state has a population of 20M. So unless you believe that *everyone* in NY was infected weeks ago, how does a IFR=0.1% make any sense? Lombardy is even more extreme.

    The bottom line is that there seems a great deal of rather contradictory IFR evidence coming from all sorts of different countries, cities, and states, and it may take time and effort to clear up the confusion and figure out what’s correct.

    I’ve certainly never claimed to be a medical expert, and perhaps IFR=1.0% is indeed too high, but I’d argue that IFR=0.1% is far too low.

    • Thanks: L.K
    • Replies: @Polynikes
    (1) they didn’t claim people had the infections as of two weeks ago. They claimed they’d had it since jan 1st or later and recovered by two weeks ago. Hence the antibodies.

    (2) what would older people responding have to do with it? They adjusted for age. older people die at a greater rate, there’s no indication they’re infected at a greater rate.


    Anyways this studies match recent results from Cincinnati. In Kansas City random testing resulted in 4% active cases, indicating a much higher prevalence if you tested for antibodies. https://www.jocogov.org/coronavirus-covid-19-testing-johnson-county
    , @AnotherDad
    Spot on Ron. Excellent comment end to end.

    You made all the key points, i wanted to make. And your follow on post on viral load says the rest.

    From the beginning i've been a moderate--based primarily on the Diamond Princess as the most solid set of data we have with both numerator and denominator. Less < 1% and i've guessed as low as .2-.3% on my most optimistic days.

    Obviously age/health of various populations will be the biggest variable for varying results, but your next comment on viral load gets at what i've concluded is a huge issue. You just don't want this thing to get too much of a head start on your immune system--that's when it kicks your ass. It seems to be the only way it can kick a younger healthy persons ass--dumping them into a cytokine storm.


    The thing that's been beaten home to me reading comments here--most people are just averse to data and basic math. Weirdly even about something where you'd think no one has any particular great emotional investment.
    , @Alden
    Maybe disease, infection, course of the disease, survival, and lingering effects of the disease can’t be reduced to algorithms, statistics or any other forms of math, graphs etc??
    , @O'Really
    Unfortunately, this study was very flawed. Most importantly:

    1) Respondents were self-selected from Facebook ads, undoubtedly skewing the sample towards individuals who may have suspected exposure or infection.

    2) Although specificity of the test was quite high, with such low base rates the results are likely almost certainly skewed by false positives.

    3) As you mentioned, their fatality data is underestimated due to temporal lag.

    https://twitter.com/jjcherian/status/1251272333177880576

    https://twitter.com/nataliexdean/status/1251309217215942656

    https://twitter.com/trvrb/status/1251332447691628545
    , @Daniel Williams

    The bottom line is that there seems a great deal of rather contradictory IFR evidence coming from all sorts of different countries, cities, and states, and it may take time and effort to clear up the confusion and figure out what’s correct.
     
    The press has been delivering total nonsense about this disease from the beginning. Drudge has run recent headlines from mainstream sources alleging that this virus:

    • originated in a lab;
    • is of natural origin;
    • causes “fizziness” as a major symptom;
    • can live for weeks outside the body;
    • can be transmissed to the living by the dead;
    • can reinfect Koreans indefinitely...

    Firsthand recollections of Muhammad were probably more accurate. I’m going to have a hard time believing anything I’m told about this illness until the hysteria dies down.

    , @res

    (1) The claim is that Santa Clara County actually had 48K-81K infections as of two weeks ago, and currently has 73 deaths, suggesting an IFR of 0.10%-0.15%. But the infection-to-death period is generally three weeks and often runs considerably longer, as shown from the South Korea data. So we really should look at the total deaths a week or two from now, which may be substantially larger.
     
    They actually assumed 3 weeks and extrapolated the deaths. We'll have a better idea on 4/22 if they were on target. Here is the relevant part of the paper.

    We can use our prevalence estimates to approximate the infection fatality rate from COVID-19 in Santa Clara County. As of April 10, 2020, 50 people have died of COVID-19 in the County, with an average increase of 6% daily in the number of deaths. If our estimates of 48,000-81,000 infections represent the cumulative total on April 1, and we project deaths to April 22 (a 3 week lag from time of infection to death22), we estimate about 100 deaths in the county. A hundred deaths out of 48,000-81,000 infections corresponds to an infection fatality rate of 0.12-0.2%. If antibodies take longer than 3 days to appear, if the average duration from case identification to death is less than 3 weeks, or if the epidemic wave has peaked and growth in deaths is less than 6% daily, then the infection fatality rate would be lower. These straightforward estimations of infection fatality rate fail to account for age structure and changing treatment approaches to COVID-19. Nevertheless, our prevalence estimates can be used to update existing fatality rates given the large upwards revision of under-ascertainment.
     
    You:

    (2) I’m not entirely sure how representative a sample you’d get from Facebook ads. Perhaps older/sicker people wouldn’t be as likely to respond. Are people in nursing homes on Facebook?
     
    Agreed. Here is what the paper had to say about that.

    This study had several limitations. First, our sampling strategy selected for members of Santa Clara County with access to Facebook and a car to attend drive-through testing sites. This resulted in an overrepresentation of white women between the ages of 19 and 64, and an under-representation of Hispanic and Asian populations, relative to our community. Those imbalances were partly addressed by weighting our sample population by zip code, race, and sex to match the county. We did not account for age imbalance in our sample, and could not ascertain representativeness of SARS-CoV-2 antibodies in homeless populations. Other biases, such as bias favoring individuals in good health capable of attending our testing sites, or bias favoring those with prior COVID-like illnesses seeking antibody confirmation are also possible. The overall effect of such biases is hard to ascertain.
     
    You:

    (3) The death rate most widely quoted had been 1%, which is what I’d generally assumed. But as of a few days ago, I’d been persuaded by the supposedly very large number of asymptomatic Iceland infections that the correct figure might be considerably lower, perhaps IFR=0.5%. So these SC results seem extreme, but not totally outlandish to me.
     
    Agreed. On April 4th I commented: "My own current estimate of the IFR is 1%, with a decent chance of 0.5%. There is significant uncertainty there though. It will be interesting to see if we ever do get a decent estimate."
    https://www.unz.com/isteve/l-a-mayor-public-should-wear-masks-but-not-n95s/#comment-3816684

    (4) Anyway, as someone already mentioned, consider NY. Deaths are currently running 1000/day and should very soon hit 20K total, probably a substantial underestimate based on that “excess death” analysis in the NYT. The state has a population of 20M. So unless you believe that *everyone* in NY was infected weeks ago, how does a IFR=0.1% make any sense? Lombardy is even more extreme.
     
    Good point. Worth repeating. Perhaps some of the low-IFR advocates could offer a response?

    The bottom line is that there seems a great deal of rather contradictory IFR evidence coming from all sorts of different countries, cities, and states, and it may take time and effort to clear up the confusion and figure out what’s correct.

    I’ve certainly never claimed to be a medical expert, and perhaps IFR=1.0% is indeed too high, but I’d argue that IFR=0.1% is far too low.
     
    Agreed (except I would probably omit the "far" from "far too low"). I think we will find there is no one true IFR. Whether or not we get any kind of decent handle on what contributes to the differences remains to be seen.

    It is worth noting that agreement on things like R0 and IFR is uncommon for flu seasons in general.
  91. @Steve Sailer
    Ten days or so on a ventilator in ICU with round the clock nursing likely costs the hospital vastly more than $39,000.

    But they’re being ordered to take no other cases. So 39,000 dollars is more than 0. Or more than they’ll get from insurance or private payment if it’s not classified as covid 19.

  92. @Coemgen
    COVID-19 patients tend to be "cost centers" for hospitals rather than "profit centers."

    The big money for hospitals is in expensive surgeries. They can't afford to be be "convalescent homes" which is what COVID-19 patient support tends to require.

    I wonder how much profit there is for hospitals in unnecessary surgeries such as "gender" reassignment?

    I’m pretty sure gender re assignment surgery can be done in offices and those office, not hospital, surgery centers. Most of it is hormone pills and injections.

    The Dr who invented the turn the penis into a vaginaish insertion into the groin muscles was unlicensed been kicked out of the profession. He figured it out and did it in his house. I think abortion was legal by then. So the Drs who’d lost their licenses had to figure out some other way to Make a living. The testucle remover instrument is the same thing they use for animals. No need for a hospital surgery room.

    Might not need general anesthesia. There’s lots of meds that prevent feeling the surgery but you’re completely awake. I’ve had some for eye surgery. Totally awake and aware as she was cutting my eyeballs. But no pain.

    It’s a total violation of weirdos civil rights to postpone their tranny surgery. Expect lawsuits soon because it’s all Trump’s fault.

  93. @Pincher Martin

    Not according to the Washington Post in this article published yesterday (4/16):
     
    I read something different last week.

    But let's assume the WP is right. The trajectory for this virus, which has been in country for just a couple of months, is still in line to hit the #1 spot - even with 85 percent of the country under severe social distancing restrictions.

    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/EVzR2YlWoAA08ji.jpg


    And it’s pretty obvious now that Coronavirus is not going to produce an annual number of deaths comparable to those caused by heart disease.
     
    Again, that is only true because of the social distancing restrictions that have been put in place by most states. Even with those restrictions, 10,000 Americans have still died over the past five days. If that daily rate continues for a year (it won't - but let's pretend we did nothing about the spread of the virus), the number of dead would be over 700,000 - or slightly higher than the estimated 600,000+ Americans who die every year because of cancer and heart disease.

    Again, that is only true because of the social distancing restrictions that have been put in place by most states.

    There’s little evidence for that, at least in terms of lockdowns. Steve posted the Chinese study that indicates keeping people at home may be increasing the spread.

    • Replies: @Pincher Martin

    There’s little evidence for that, at least in terms of lockdowns. Steve posted the Chinese study that indicates keeping people at home may be increasing the spread.
     
    Why look at the Chinese study when we have fifty different experiments happening in the states?

    We can take a look at the daily percentage growth in the infection rates in various states since they've put restrictions in place. I've looked at several, and they suggest the restrictions are working in slowing the spread. The rates usually go from 25 all the way up to 100 percent growth per day to less than 5 percent.

    I don't think it makes any sense to believe that staying home isolated from others makes it easier to spread an infectious disease among your family members. What families don't typically live in close proximity? Chinese businessmen with mistresses holed up in an apartment on the other side of town, maybe?
  94. @Steve Sailer
    But if everybody over a certain age is playing Russian Roulette with 1 bullet in a 100 chamber revolver, how vibrant is the economy going to be?

    Hate to break it to you Steve, but up here in the nosebleed years your chance of croaking every year is greater than 1%.
    https://www.ssa.gov/oact/STATS/table4c6.html

    Granted most of the 1.24% of 61 year-olds who are supposed to cash in this year, you could sort of guess were “ready”. You could probably sort through all the 61 year-olds and pick out the 5% you thought were “in trouble” and they would account for over half of that 1.24%. But they’ll be some surprises too.

    We all fly away.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
    One of my old inveterate-tinkerer friends dropped dead last week. He was 78 and felt great up until he walked into the house where his daughter was doing something, said he didn't feel good, and he fell over dead a few minutes later. They did an autopsy and found that he had had massive fourth stage cancer and severe heart disease, but he'd been asymptomatic until the end. I told the girl that as much as we missed him, we should be glad it happened like it did, because if they'd found it he would have had 1) a chest crack bypass and 2) massive chemo and radiation. And it probably would have not bought him very much time, if any. He had a great life and he would have hated being an invalid and in pain.
    , @danand
    AnotherDad, just a visual to your data, that I had handy on the desktop:

    https://flic.kr/p/2iRns4a

    https://flic.kr/p/2iRqcET


    Interesting that Suicide and Influenza/Pneumonia typically run neck & neck in the US.
  95. “ An epidemic seed on Jan. 1 implies that by March 9 about six million people in the U.S. would have been infected”

    Whoa whoa whoa! Hold on. That number is already taken.

  96. Actually, I might as well add one very speculative issue, perhaps merely demonstrating my total ignorance of medicine…

    There seems a great deal of evidence that “viral load” may sometimes be an important factor in deaths or serious cases of Coronavirus. For example, lots of young, perfectly healthy doctors have died, something that should otherwise be exceptionally rare. And perhaps the viral load factor is continuous rather than based upon a threshold exposure level.

    I’m wondering whether the antibody test might be entirely independent of viral load. Perhaps 70-80% of the Santa Clara positives had received viral loads far too low to likely cause infection, but still sufficient to produce antibodies. If so, then they might have been “exposed” but not “infected” in the usual sense.

    Obviously, the crucial question would be whether such minimal “exposures” would provide immunity to a more substantial viral load exposure at a later date. If there’s little or no immunity, then those “exposures” essentially amount to false positives.

    Like I said, I don’t claim to know any medicine so this is just ignorant speculation…

    • Replies: @PennTothal

    There seems a great deal of evidence that “viral load” may sometimes be an important factor in deaths or serious cases of Coronavirus
     
    .


    Dr. Adalja from Johns Hopkins University addressed this very topic back on March 11th in an interview with Sam Harris.

    (Listen to minute 38-39 of the audio podcast:)

    https://samharris.org/podcasts/191-early-thoughts-pandemic/

    His opinion was that viral load likely does influence severity of illness, and that this was well-known for other viral diseases and in animal models of viral illness.
    , @Brás Cubas

    Perhaps 70-80% of the Santa Clara positives had received viral loads far too low to likely cause infection, but still sufficient to produce antibodies.
     
    You are supposing that antibodies are more frequent than infections. Well, at least in regards to this novel coronavirus, yesterday the World Health Organization produced a statement that goes in direct opposition to what you said. Maybe some people have watched it: the speaker was a red-haired plump guy with a distinctly Irish accent.

    As I have made a comment about this on Gilad Atzmon's article 'The Meaning of Corona', I will just reproduce it almost word by word:

    In the news yesterday, the World Health Organization declared that very few of the recovered develop antibodies, and thus herd immunity is not going to happen. Also, the TV reporter — it wasn’t clear whether she was quoting the W.H.O. on that — said that those who develop antibodies are possibly becoming reinfected, so antibodies would be a poor protection.

    If true, those are very bad news. Forget herd immunity. And, possibly, forget vaccines as well.

    On the other hand, those declarations seem totally at odds with the following news:

    Why we’re still relying on a century-old strategy to treat COVID-19
    https://www.theverge.com/2020/4/13/21216513/plasma-blood-coronavirus-treament-drug-development-antibodies

    ‘Liquid gold’: the rush for plasma and the Covid-19 survivors who want to help
    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/apr/16/plasma-donations-coronavirus-patients-survivors

    Italy aims to turn suffering to advantage with experimental Covid-19 treatment
    https://edition.cnn.com/2020/04/15/europe/italy-coronavirus-antibody-plasma-treatment-intl/index.html

    Very strange.

    , @Mr. Anon

    There seems a great deal of evidence that “viral load” may sometimes be an important factor in deaths or serious cases of Coronavirus. For example, lots of young, perfectly healthy doctors have died, something that should otherwise be exceptionally rare. And perhaps the viral load factor is continuous rather than based upon a threshold exposure level.
     
    It would make sense that viral load would be important. However, are you sure that "lots of young, perfectly healthy doctors have died."? Were they all perfectly healthy? Were they all young? A few weeks ago, the Italian equivalent to the AMA put out a list of about a hundred doctors who died of COVID-19 - a list with dates of birth and death - and implied that they died while practicing medicine during the epidemic. When it was pointed out to them that a lot of those doctors were in there in their 80s and 90s and were probably just retirees who had succumbed as might any other retiree, that Italian medical organization................removed all the birth dates from the website.
  97. @XYZ (no Mr.)
    A long way from herd immunity, and a long way from Wuhan virus being especially deadly to an individual infected. Shouldn't a 1% death rate indicate 5000 to 8000 dead in Santa Clara County alone by now? Where exactly are the dead? Maybe, just maybe, both exponential junkies and skeptics were both a little right. The Wuhan virus is more contagious than the flu, but not more deadly -- as a percentage of the infected. Overall though, it would cause more deaths if no mitigation is taken.

    Shouldn’t a 1% death rate indicate 5000 to 8000 dead in Santa Clara County alone by now?

    Check math.

    • Replies: @XYZ (no Mr.)
    Fair enough. 500 to 800 deaths then. California in total has a little over 1000 deaths. So again, where is this spike in deaths for Santa Clara County?
  98. @Ron Unz
    These are certainly interesting results, but I'd make several points:

    (1) The claim is that Santa Clara County actually had 48K-81K infections as of two weeks ago, and currently has 73 deaths, suggesting an IFR of 0.10%-0.15%. But the infection-to-death period is generally three weeks and often runs considerably longer, as shown from the South Korea data. So we really should look at the total deaths a week or two from now, which may be substantially larger.

    (2) I'm not entirely sure how representative a sample you'd get from Facebook ads. Perhaps older/sicker people wouldn't be as likely to respond. Are people in nursing homes on Facebook?

    (3) The death rate most widely quoted had been 1%, which is what I'd generally assumed. But as of a few days ago, I'd been persuaded by the supposedly very large number of asymptomatic Iceland infections that the correct figure might be considerably lower, perhaps IFR=0.5%. So these SC results seem extreme, but not totally outlandish to me.

    (4) Anyway, as someone already mentioned, consider NY. Deaths are currently running 1000/day and should very soon hit 20K total, probably a substantial underestimate based on that "excess death" analysis in the NYT. The state has a population of 20M. So unless you believe that *everyone* in NY was infected weeks ago, how does a IFR=0.1% make any sense? Lombardy is even more extreme.

    The bottom line is that there seems a great deal of rather contradictory IFR evidence coming from all sorts of different countries, cities, and states, and it may take time and effort to clear up the confusion and figure out what's correct.

    I've certainly never claimed to be a medical expert, and perhaps IFR=1.0% is indeed too high, but I'd argue that IFR=0.1% is far too low.

    (1) they didn’t claim people had the infections as of two weeks ago. They claimed they’d had it since jan 1st or later and recovered by two weeks ago. Hence the antibodies.

    (2) what would older people responding have to do with it? They adjusted for age. older people die at a greater rate, there’s no indication they’re infected at a greater rate.

    Anyways this studies match recent results from Cincinnati. In Kansas City random testing resulted in 4% active cases, indicating a much higher prevalence if you tested for antibodies. https://www.jocogov.org/coronavirus-covid-19-testing-johnson-county

    • Agree: Travis
  99. The Italian study that reported 2/3 immune was based on actual blood donors and not the drive through testing used here, so you gotta wonder if the bigger volume gave more sensitivity for detecting antibodies.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    The Italian town with 2/3rd having antibodies had one of the highest death rates in the world, with total deaths being 10 times the normal deaths for the same time period. New York is more like 2X or maybe 3X lately.
  100. @Alexander Turok
    What do you think of my idea to selectively end the shutdown? People can stop isolating themselves so long as they agree to two conditions:

    1. Agree that if they do get sick with corona or some disease that looks like it could be corona, they will renounce their right to all medical care more serious than CVS Health Day & Night Cold + Flu Plus Softgels, whether they have insurance or not, whether they have the ability to pay or not, and that if they try to renege on this they will be criminally prosecuted.

    2. Agree to wear a special symbol on their clothing so that others can distinguish them from responsible people who go out once a month to buy needed supplies or work jobs which must be done, and agree that others have an absolute right to discriminate against them, such as by refusing to hire them, refusing to allow them to use their stores, segregating them within, etc., for the remainder of the pandemic. I suggest the symbol be a pinhead.

    I prefer my plan of beginning tomorrow we launch a 24 hour go fund me. If boomers deposit 400 million dollars of assets before time runs out- the lockdown is extended one more day. On day 2 it goes up to 500 million dollars. And so on.

    Additionally boomers can designate 100 I’ll call them fatties (morbidly obese boomers you probably qualify). At the end of each week if these 100 fatties lose an average of ten pounds each the amount of the go fund me is reduced 100 million dollars.

    • Replies: @Alexander Turok
    You believe in the just-world fallacy. You made the right choices, aren't fat, so a virus can't affect you.

    I'd be happy to let you have that belief so long as you agree to forsake use of the healthcare system and wear the badge.
  101. @unit472
    It is an interesting point but I would answer 'horses for courses'. A commuter using Muni, Bart or a company bus in SF to get to work could be expected to have showered, shaved or put on make up and clean clothes sometime in the previous 24 hours before boarding mass transit. It might be a bit different in NYC.

    A person with an infectious respiratory disease will infect others on the bus no matter how clean he is. Just as he’ll infect others at school or workplace.

  102. @Ron Unz
    These are certainly interesting results, but I'd make several points:

    (1) The claim is that Santa Clara County actually had 48K-81K infections as of two weeks ago, and currently has 73 deaths, suggesting an IFR of 0.10%-0.15%. But the infection-to-death period is generally three weeks and often runs considerably longer, as shown from the South Korea data. So we really should look at the total deaths a week or two from now, which may be substantially larger.

    (2) I'm not entirely sure how representative a sample you'd get from Facebook ads. Perhaps older/sicker people wouldn't be as likely to respond. Are people in nursing homes on Facebook?

    (3) The death rate most widely quoted had been 1%, which is what I'd generally assumed. But as of a few days ago, I'd been persuaded by the supposedly very large number of asymptomatic Iceland infections that the correct figure might be considerably lower, perhaps IFR=0.5%. So these SC results seem extreme, but not totally outlandish to me.

    (4) Anyway, as someone already mentioned, consider NY. Deaths are currently running 1000/day and should very soon hit 20K total, probably a substantial underestimate based on that "excess death" analysis in the NYT. The state has a population of 20M. So unless you believe that *everyone* in NY was infected weeks ago, how does a IFR=0.1% make any sense? Lombardy is even more extreme.

    The bottom line is that there seems a great deal of rather contradictory IFR evidence coming from all sorts of different countries, cities, and states, and it may take time and effort to clear up the confusion and figure out what's correct.

    I've certainly never claimed to be a medical expert, and perhaps IFR=1.0% is indeed too high, but I'd argue that IFR=0.1% is far too low.

    Spot on Ron. Excellent comment end to end.

    You made all the key points, i wanted to make. And your follow on post on viral load says the rest.

    From the beginning i’ve been a moderate–based primarily on the Diamond Princess as the most solid set of data we have with both numerator and denominator. Less < 1% and i've guessed as low as .2-.3% on my most optimistic days.

    Obviously age/health of various populations will be the biggest variable for varying results, but your next comment on viral load gets at what i've concluded is a huge issue. You just don't want this thing to get too much of a head start on your immune system–that's when it kicks your ass. It seems to be the only way it can kick a younger healthy persons ass–dumping them into a cytokine storm.

    The thing that's been beaten home to me reading comments here–most people are just averse to data and basic math. Weirdly even about something where you'd think no one has any particular great emotional investment.

  103. Anonymous[326] • Disclaimer says:

    Steve Sailer, you are way too optimistic. I believe that case fatality rates are actually pretty good proxies for total infection deaths rates because the quarantine measures were put in place shortly after the first people in America with COVID-19 got sick and admitted to the hospital. And yet, the number of deaths increased from 100 a day to 500 a day, than to 2,000 a day and not closre to 5,000 a day. Yestarday we had the worsst day, at over 4,300 deaths.

    If you assume that it takes 1 to 2 weeks for infected people to show the first signs of being ill, there simply wasn’t enough time for huge numbers of the population to get infected given the time that elapsed from the first people that showed signs of being ill to the beggining of the quarantine.

    P:ostulating a 0.01% fatality rate is ridiculous. Do the math. Given 150,000 deaths so far Worldwide, you would need for 1.5 *billion* people to have been infected for that number of fatalities to be representative of the truth. There is no way that COVID-19 infected 1.5 billion people in the three months that elapsed from the beggining of the shutdown in Wuhan to the beggining of the global shutdown.

    Also the curve is not flattening. The number of casulaties increases every day, and it jumped from 100 a day a month ago to 4,000 day today.

    You are delusionally optimistic. There is a word for that: denial. When faced with tragedies and extremely gloomy prospects, human being resort to wishful thinking. Think a terminally ill patient who, having exhausted all medical options, resorts to alternative medicine despite lack of evidence. Or who converts to religion, in a last ditch attempt to avoid death by pretending they have an immortal part that can be saved.

    • Replies: @Manfred Arcane
    OK, Doomer. So, I guess we may as well all kill ourselves right now, because MATH!
  104. @Ron Unz
    These are certainly interesting results, but I'd make several points:

    (1) The claim is that Santa Clara County actually had 48K-81K infections as of two weeks ago, and currently has 73 deaths, suggesting an IFR of 0.10%-0.15%. But the infection-to-death period is generally three weeks and often runs considerably longer, as shown from the South Korea data. So we really should look at the total deaths a week or two from now, which may be substantially larger.

    (2) I'm not entirely sure how representative a sample you'd get from Facebook ads. Perhaps older/sicker people wouldn't be as likely to respond. Are people in nursing homes on Facebook?

    (3) The death rate most widely quoted had been 1%, which is what I'd generally assumed. But as of a few days ago, I'd been persuaded by the supposedly very large number of asymptomatic Iceland infections that the correct figure might be considerably lower, perhaps IFR=0.5%. So these SC results seem extreme, but not totally outlandish to me.

    (4) Anyway, as someone already mentioned, consider NY. Deaths are currently running 1000/day and should very soon hit 20K total, probably a substantial underestimate based on that "excess death" analysis in the NYT. The state has a population of 20M. So unless you believe that *everyone* in NY was infected weeks ago, how does a IFR=0.1% make any sense? Lombardy is even more extreme.

    The bottom line is that there seems a great deal of rather contradictory IFR evidence coming from all sorts of different countries, cities, and states, and it may take time and effort to clear up the confusion and figure out what's correct.

    I've certainly never claimed to be a medical expert, and perhaps IFR=1.0% is indeed too high, but I'd argue that IFR=0.1% is far too low.

    Maybe disease, infection, course of the disease, survival, and lingering effects of the disease can’t be reduced to algorithms, statistics or any other forms of math, graphs etc??

  105. I respect anyone who does good work, but…Good grief that author list. Isn’t anyone named Johnson, Smith, or Jones going into research fields like this (or perhaps even being allowed to)?

    • Replies: @anon
    Lots of Johnsons, Smiths, Joneses in the NBA and the NFL. It must be because all other avenues of advancement are closed to them. They are not allowed to do 20+ years of schooling plus a postdoc, only to face uncertain job prospects in academia and an OK, but not great, salary.
    , @epebble
    They are all busy running their hedge funds longing/shorting/calling/putting various drug maker stocks based on how the research/testing is saying. Alternately, they may be figuring out whom to sue/defend for all the thousands of deaths, Hey, somebody has to be responsible. They may also be writing juicy text that will become CARES Act XXXIV that will enrich their clients. All these jobs pay lot higher than dealing with deadly viruses in an infectious diseases lab. Division of labor, Capitalism 101.
    , @vhrm

    I respect anyone who does good work, but…Good grief that author list. Isn’t anyone named Johnson, Smith, or Jones going into research fields like this (or perhaps even being allowed to)?
     
    Allowed to? sure. But if Johnson, Smith, or Jones have the brains for this massive they got hip to the game and are off in finance or marketing somewhere making a lot of money instead.

    (not that I'm questioning my life choices or anything... >.> )

  106. @Elli
    One bad possibility is that they all got infected at the same time in a super spreader event and they are still at a very early presymptomatic stage of infection.

    Or maybe they are all skinny and hardy with high vitamin D levels, and substance abuse and mental illness or its treatment are protective.

    Or maybe the tests are bad.

    Occam’s razor points to this being an antibody test 1.0 problem. Antibody testing is quite difficult and current early versions are very error prone. Works well in lab but not in field.

    https://www.sciencetimes.com/articles/25145/20200329/spain-and-other-countries-return-defective-covid-19-test-kits-to-china.htm

    The Stanford experiment should also be considered an early experiment and conclusions are very tentative at best. China and South Korea have reported possible cases of reinfection:

    https://qz.com/1837798/why-some-covid-19-patients-might-have-tested-positive-twice/

    If that is true, our understanding of Covid antibodies may be incomplete.

  107. @Ron Unz
    These are certainly interesting results, but I'd make several points:

    (1) The claim is that Santa Clara County actually had 48K-81K infections as of two weeks ago, and currently has 73 deaths, suggesting an IFR of 0.10%-0.15%. But the infection-to-death period is generally three weeks and often runs considerably longer, as shown from the South Korea data. So we really should look at the total deaths a week or two from now, which may be substantially larger.

    (2) I'm not entirely sure how representative a sample you'd get from Facebook ads. Perhaps older/sicker people wouldn't be as likely to respond. Are people in nursing homes on Facebook?

    (3) The death rate most widely quoted had been 1%, which is what I'd generally assumed. But as of a few days ago, I'd been persuaded by the supposedly very large number of asymptomatic Iceland infections that the correct figure might be considerably lower, perhaps IFR=0.5%. So these SC results seem extreme, but not totally outlandish to me.

    (4) Anyway, as someone already mentioned, consider NY. Deaths are currently running 1000/day and should very soon hit 20K total, probably a substantial underestimate based on that "excess death" analysis in the NYT. The state has a population of 20M. So unless you believe that *everyone* in NY was infected weeks ago, how does a IFR=0.1% make any sense? Lombardy is even more extreme.

    The bottom line is that there seems a great deal of rather contradictory IFR evidence coming from all sorts of different countries, cities, and states, and it may take time and effort to clear up the confusion and figure out what's correct.

    I've certainly never claimed to be a medical expert, and perhaps IFR=1.0% is indeed too high, but I'd argue that IFR=0.1% is far too low.

    Unfortunately, this study was very flawed. Most importantly:

    1) Respondents were self-selected from Facebook ads, undoubtedly skewing the sample towards individuals who may have suspected exposure or infection.

    2) Although specificity of the test was quite high, with such low base rates the results are likely almost certainly skewed by false positives.

    3) As you mentioned, their fatality data is underestimated due to temporal lag.

  108. @Kgghj
    The Italian study that reported 2/3 immune was based on actual blood donors and not the drive through testing used here, so you gotta wonder if the bigger volume gave more sensitivity for detecting antibodies.

    The Italian town with 2/3rd having antibodies had one of the highest death rates in the world, with total deaths being 10 times the normal deaths for the same time period. New York is more like 2X or maybe 3X lately.

  109. Actually, I should make one more point…

    A week or two ago, Victor Davis Hanson, a scientifically-ignorant Neocon shill, spouted off that maybe California had already achieved “herd immunity.” Naturally, his ridiculous speculation was quickly picked up by National Review, FoxNews, and lots of random retards who were looking for a reason why hated California had done so well.

    Herd immunity would probably be 50-70% exposure. Santa Clara County was the epicenter of the California outbreak and we’ve now discovered the exposure is more like 2-3%. So VDH’s claims were garbage, just as expected.

    • Replies: @Inquiring Mind
    Mr. Unz:

    If Professor Hanson is wrong, state your position. But where do get "scientifically-ignorant (sic -- you don't hyphenate adverbs) Neocon shill" on a raison farmer who writes about ancient Greek wars?

    Where do you get Neocon on a guy who goes around giving speeches "The Case for Trump." Is President Trump a Neocon?

    You need to take a look at yourself if you are an anti-Sweden-ite

    https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=larry+finds+out+his+lawyer+isn%27t+jewish&docid=607986967267708199&mid=6B5ED4C7E4F030FFECAC6B5ED4C7E4F030FFECAC&view=detail&FORM=VIRE

  110. @Ron Unz
    These are certainly interesting results, but I'd make several points:

    (1) The claim is that Santa Clara County actually had 48K-81K infections as of two weeks ago, and currently has 73 deaths, suggesting an IFR of 0.10%-0.15%. But the infection-to-death period is generally three weeks and often runs considerably longer, as shown from the South Korea data. So we really should look at the total deaths a week or two from now, which may be substantially larger.

    (2) I'm not entirely sure how representative a sample you'd get from Facebook ads. Perhaps older/sicker people wouldn't be as likely to respond. Are people in nursing homes on Facebook?

    (3) The death rate most widely quoted had been 1%, which is what I'd generally assumed. But as of a few days ago, I'd been persuaded by the supposedly very large number of asymptomatic Iceland infections that the correct figure might be considerably lower, perhaps IFR=0.5%. So these SC results seem extreme, but not totally outlandish to me.

    (4) Anyway, as someone already mentioned, consider NY. Deaths are currently running 1000/day and should very soon hit 20K total, probably a substantial underestimate based on that "excess death" analysis in the NYT. The state has a population of 20M. So unless you believe that *everyone* in NY was infected weeks ago, how does a IFR=0.1% make any sense? Lombardy is even more extreme.

    The bottom line is that there seems a great deal of rather contradictory IFR evidence coming from all sorts of different countries, cities, and states, and it may take time and effort to clear up the confusion and figure out what's correct.

    I've certainly never claimed to be a medical expert, and perhaps IFR=1.0% is indeed too high, but I'd argue that IFR=0.1% is far too low.

    The bottom line is that there seems a great deal of rather contradictory IFR evidence coming from all sorts of different countries, cities, and states, and it may take time and effort to clear up the confusion and figure out what’s correct.

    The press has been delivering total nonsense about this disease from the beginning. Drudge has run recent headlines from mainstream sources alleging that this virus:

    • originated in a lab;
    • is of natural origin;
    • causes “fizziness” as a major symptom;
    • can live for weeks outside the body;
    • can be transmissed to the living by the dead;
    • can reinfect Koreans indefinitely…

    Firsthand recollections of Muhammad were probably more accurate. I’m going to have a hard time believing anything I’m told about this illness until the hysteria dies down.

  111. This is interesting: https://www.bostonglobe.com/2020/04/17/business/nearly-third-200-blood-samples-taken-chelsea-show-exposure-coronavirus/

    Semi-random (“Man on the Street” method) serosurvey in a hard-hit, Latino-majority Boston suburb demonstrates 32% positive rate. [Full details of false positives, etc. not available in this news report.]

    Given the size of the town (~40,000) and number of recorded deaths (39), this would result in a 0.3% IFR not adjusting for time lag, so maybe more like 0.4-0.5%.

    • Replies: @anon
    It has been claimed that Chelsea, MA residents are less healthy due to being wedged between the Tobin Bridge/Rt. 1 and the Logan airport, having high exposure due to using public transportation more, being "essential workers", and high population density, and, you know, "structural racism".

    That is to say, their IFR might be elevated. It's less a suburb and more a city neighborhood of Boston, and so poorly run, Boston had to take Chelsea into receivership some years ago. On the plus side, it is on the water and has pleasant views of the Boston harbor.
    All of the hardest hit communities in MA are heavily Latino and/or Black.
  112. @Anonymous

    A medical practice is no different from any other business. No revenue, no customers, equals no paychecks and no bills paid.
     
    What bills need to be paid if they aren’t operating?

    Rent?

  113. @Anonymous

    A medical practice is no different from any other business. No revenue, no customers, equals no paychecks and no bills paid.
     
    What bills need to be paid if they aren’t operating?

    Salaries to doctors, nurses, and support personnel. Rents, supply contracts, utilities etc.
    Hospitals are losing money big time right now.

  114. @Ron Unz
    These are certainly interesting results, but I'd make several points:

    (1) The claim is that Santa Clara County actually had 48K-81K infections as of two weeks ago, and currently has 73 deaths, suggesting an IFR of 0.10%-0.15%. But the infection-to-death period is generally three weeks and often runs considerably longer, as shown from the South Korea data. So we really should look at the total deaths a week or two from now, which may be substantially larger.

    (2) I'm not entirely sure how representative a sample you'd get from Facebook ads. Perhaps older/sicker people wouldn't be as likely to respond. Are people in nursing homes on Facebook?

    (3) The death rate most widely quoted had been 1%, which is what I'd generally assumed. But as of a few days ago, I'd been persuaded by the supposedly very large number of asymptomatic Iceland infections that the correct figure might be considerably lower, perhaps IFR=0.5%. So these SC results seem extreme, but not totally outlandish to me.

    (4) Anyway, as someone already mentioned, consider NY. Deaths are currently running 1000/day and should very soon hit 20K total, probably a substantial underestimate based on that "excess death" analysis in the NYT. The state has a population of 20M. So unless you believe that *everyone* in NY was infected weeks ago, how does a IFR=0.1% make any sense? Lombardy is even more extreme.

    The bottom line is that there seems a great deal of rather contradictory IFR evidence coming from all sorts of different countries, cities, and states, and it may take time and effort to clear up the confusion and figure out what's correct.

    I've certainly never claimed to be a medical expert, and perhaps IFR=1.0% is indeed too high, but I'd argue that IFR=0.1% is far too low.

    (1) The claim is that Santa Clara County actually had 48K-81K infections as of two weeks ago, and currently has 73 deaths, suggesting an IFR of 0.10%-0.15%. But the infection-to-death period is generally three weeks and often runs considerably longer, as shown from the South Korea data. So we really should look at the total deaths a week or two from now, which may be substantially larger.

    They actually assumed 3 weeks and extrapolated the deaths. We’ll have a better idea on 4/22 if they were on target. Here is the relevant part of the paper.

    We can use our prevalence estimates to approximate the infection fatality rate from COVID-19 in Santa Clara County. As of April 10, 2020, 50 people have died of COVID-19 in the County, with an average increase of 6% daily in the number of deaths. If our estimates of 48,000-81,000 infections represent the cumulative total on April 1, and we project deaths to April 22 (a 3 week lag from time of infection to death22), we estimate about 100 deaths in the county. A hundred deaths out of 48,000-81,000 infections corresponds to an infection fatality rate of 0.12-0.2%. If antibodies take longer than 3 days to appear, if the average duration from case identification to death is less than 3 weeks, or if the epidemic wave has peaked and growth in deaths is less than 6% daily, then the infection fatality rate would be lower. These straightforward estimations of infection fatality rate fail to account for age structure and changing treatment approaches to COVID-19. Nevertheless, our prevalence estimates can be used to update existing fatality rates given the large upwards revision of under-ascertainment.

    You:

    (2) I’m not entirely sure how representative a sample you’d get from Facebook ads. Perhaps older/sicker people wouldn’t be as likely to respond. Are people in nursing homes on Facebook?

    Agreed. Here is what the paper had to say about that.

    This study had several limitations. First, our sampling strategy selected for members of Santa Clara County with access to Facebook and a car to attend drive-through testing sites. This resulted in an overrepresentation of white women between the ages of 19 and 64, and an under-representation of Hispanic and Asian populations, relative to our community. Those imbalances were partly addressed by weighting our sample population by zip code, race, and sex to match the county. We did not account for age imbalance in our sample, and could not ascertain representativeness of SARS-CoV-2 antibodies in homeless populations. Other biases, such as bias favoring individuals in good health capable of attending our testing sites, or bias favoring those with prior COVID-like illnesses seeking antibody confirmation are also possible. The overall effect of such biases is hard to ascertain.

    You:

    (3) The death rate most widely quoted had been 1%, which is what I’d generally assumed. But as of a few days ago, I’d been persuaded by the supposedly very large number of asymptomatic Iceland infections that the correct figure might be considerably lower, perhaps IFR=0.5%. So these SC results seem extreme, but not totally outlandish to me.

    Agreed. On April 4th I commented: “My own current estimate of the IFR is 1%, with a decent chance of 0.5%. There is significant uncertainty there though. It will be interesting to see if we ever do get a decent estimate.”
    https://www.unz.com/isteve/l-a-mayor-public-should-wear-masks-but-not-n95s/#comment-3816684

    (4) Anyway, as someone already mentioned, consider NY. Deaths are currently running 1000/day and should very soon hit 20K total, probably a substantial underestimate based on that “excess death” analysis in the NYT. The state has a population of 20M. So unless you believe that *everyone* in NY was infected weeks ago, how does a IFR=0.1% make any sense? Lombardy is even more extreme.

    Good point. Worth repeating. Perhaps some of the low-IFR advocates could offer a response?

    The bottom line is that there seems a great deal of rather contradictory IFR evidence coming from all sorts of different countries, cities, and states, and it may take time and effort to clear up the confusion and figure out what’s correct.

    I’ve certainly never claimed to be a medical expert, and perhaps IFR=1.0% is indeed too high, but I’d argue that IFR=0.1% is far too low.

    Agreed (except I would probably omit the “far” from “far too low”). I think we will find there is no one true IFR. Whether or not we get any kind of decent handle on what contributes to the differences remains to be seen.

    It is worth noting that agreement on things like R0 and IFR is uncommon for flu seasons in general.

    • Replies: @The one
    I think the IFR for the under-65s is probably under 0.1%. Most of the debate I see here is really between people that think we should spend unlimited amounts of money to give the old and sick a few more years to live and those that believe a robust society invests in the next generation.
    , @utu

    There is significant uncertainty there though. It will be interesting to see if we ever do get a decent estimate.
     
    Probably not. IFR is strongly age dependent. Its value may change by orders of magnitude between age=20 and age=80. Also the infection rate will be age dependent. The old folks are less mobile and can have lower infection rate as they are the ones who take protective measures more seriously and otoh when in group home living like a nursing home they are more vulnerable and at the mercy of careless staff.

    Therefore, imo, IFR estimates can vary widely from place to place and from study to study depending on the age demographics and how the age correction if at all are calculated. I would not be surprised that the same data may yield IFR estimates differing by an order of magnitude. I would go even further: the IFR as a single number is pretty meaningless because the disease outcomes in population with vastly different age demographic will be very different. Perhaps CDC and WHO have a standard population of age demographics against which the IFR is calculated.

    When the authors of the Stanford paper say "We did not account for age imbalance in our sample" they should also state that while their work is meaningful to establish the infection rate in the population it cannot yield good a estimate do the death rate.
    , @UK
    In places like New York, where hospitals get stuffed with patients, other patients all get Chinavirus. This massively inflates the death rates as it becomes an infection of opportunity in those circumstances among the very sick and gets the blame for merely being there at the end/being the straw that breaks the camel's back.

    Isn't it kind of obvious that a highly infectious novel pathogen would have this (seeming) effect in crowded hospitals?

    Therefore the real chance of it actually killing you if you get it is still <0.1% as seen through antibody testing in places where the dying aren't especially exposed to it and their deaths especially attributed to it.
    , @res
    If anyone cares, the paper estimated 100 deaths on 4/22. Actual total at the moment (from their site: "Values for the most recent five days will likely increase as the results are received.") is 94 deaths.
    https://www.sccgov.org/sites/covid19/Pages/dashboard.aspx

    If you click "-> Death Data" under page navigation you can see demographics. Definitely hitting the elderly hardest, but there are a number of not so old people. In %
    31-40: 4
    41-50: 5
    51-60: 15
    61-70: 14
    71-80: 28
    81-90: 19
    90+: 15

    And 61/39% M/F.
  115. @unit472
    The factors are these.

    1. New unknown disease with no treatment or cure is spreading.

    2. Certain 'marginalized' populations disproportionately affected. Early victims are high profile. Tom Hanks, Prince Charles, NBA stars.

    3, Impeachment having failed, Demo presidential campaign peters out after Super Tuesday. Democrats realize Biden is incapable of conducting a traditional presidential campaign but Trump is.

    4. Machina Ex Deus is needed to defeat Trump.

    5. See #1

    Certain ‘marginalized’ populations disproportionately affected. Early victims are high profile. Tom Hanks, Prince Charles, NBA stars.

    That’s crazy talk! Whoever heard of big stars like Cary Grant or Greta Garbo working behind the scenes to advance some kind of agenda?

    • Replies: @Jus' Sayin'...
    That's very subtle. You need to put a /sarc/ in there.
  116. Anonymous[427] • Disclaimer says:
    @AnotherDad
    Hate to break it to you Steve, but up here in the nosebleed years your chance of croaking every year is greater than 1%.
    https://www.ssa.gov/oact/STATS/table4c6.html

    Granted most of the 1.24% of 61 year-olds who are supposed to cash in this year, you could sort of guess were "ready". You could probably sort through all the 61 year-olds and pick out the 5% you thought were "in trouble" and they would account for over half of that 1.24%. But they'll be some surprises too.

    We all fly away.

    One of my old inveterate-tinkerer friends dropped dead last week. He was 78 and felt great up until he walked into the house where his daughter was doing something, said he didn’t feel good, and he fell over dead a few minutes later. They did an autopsy and found that he had had massive fourth stage cancer and severe heart disease, but he’d been asymptomatic until the end. I told the girl that as much as we missed him, we should be glad it happened like it did, because if they’d found it he would have had 1) a chest crack bypass and 2) massive chemo and radiation. And it probably would have not bought him very much time, if any. He had a great life and he would have hated being an invalid and in pain.

    • Agree: vhrm
  117. @Daniel Williams
    There’s been an individual day or two when atomic warfare was the #1 killer of Japanese. And plane crashes of New Yorkers. It doesn’t mean what you appear to think it does.

    I can’t help it if you aren’t bright enough to see the difference.

  118. @Daniel Williams

    I like the scare-italics around “models.”
     
    Bummed you didn’t get your apocalypse, huh? Finally get even with all those bullies?

    The best-case scenarios predicted by the models—the ones you still appear to think were accurate somehow—was 100K dead by now.

    Did that happen or not?

    Ever think that most of the so-called experts might be as mediocre as their jobs are you are at yours, or I am at mine?

    Source?

    • Replies: @TomSchmidt
    https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-020-01003-6

    Some specifics from, you know, THE model, the one that got the U.K. locked down. First, the death rate of infected people was assumed at .9%, which was fitted to the U.K. population. As pointed out for real data from Santa Clara, with 73 deaths and 81,000 possible infections, you have .09% infection fatality rate, an order of magnitude wrong. Using the lower number of infections in the county, you have .15% IFR, 50% worse than the flu, we think. That's only six times lower.

    Take a look at the graph from that article derived from the model. According to it, we should be experiencing deaths of 1/100,000 now in the USA, or about 3300/day. According to Worldometers, we were 1/3rd of that yesterday.

    Further from the model: "had the United States taken no action against the virus, it would have seen 2.18 million deaths. By comparison, the earlier agent-based simulation, run using the same assumptions about mortality rate and reproduction number, estimated 2.2 million US deaths."

    That prediction flows from the .9% IFR, since it suggests that .67% of the entire country would have died from the virus. The data From a number of studies show clearly: the model was WRONG. Catastrophically so, since the Chinese-style lockdowns put in place in response to it throughout the West will drive millions into poverty and early graves from deaths of despair. But that isn't the fault of the model but the politicians: the modelers are only the court eunuchs serving the emperor's desires.

  119. The smoking gun on the Bay area study:

    • Replies: @Hail
    Razib Khan is a CoronaPanic supporter?

    Razib "self quarantine if you" Khan
    @razibkhan

    [...] the [Santa Clara] results aren't really consistent with a bunch of other stuff
     

    , @UK
    The random internet bloke didn't even end up testing positive...
  120. @res

    (1) The claim is that Santa Clara County actually had 48K-81K infections as of two weeks ago, and currently has 73 deaths, suggesting an IFR of 0.10%-0.15%. But the infection-to-death period is generally three weeks and often runs considerably longer, as shown from the South Korea data. So we really should look at the total deaths a week or two from now, which may be substantially larger.
     
    They actually assumed 3 weeks and extrapolated the deaths. We'll have a better idea on 4/22 if they were on target. Here is the relevant part of the paper.

    We can use our prevalence estimates to approximate the infection fatality rate from COVID-19 in Santa Clara County. As of April 10, 2020, 50 people have died of COVID-19 in the County, with an average increase of 6% daily in the number of deaths. If our estimates of 48,000-81,000 infections represent the cumulative total on April 1, and we project deaths to April 22 (a 3 week lag from time of infection to death22), we estimate about 100 deaths in the county. A hundred deaths out of 48,000-81,000 infections corresponds to an infection fatality rate of 0.12-0.2%. If antibodies take longer than 3 days to appear, if the average duration from case identification to death is less than 3 weeks, or if the epidemic wave has peaked and growth in deaths is less than 6% daily, then the infection fatality rate would be lower. These straightforward estimations of infection fatality rate fail to account for age structure and changing treatment approaches to COVID-19. Nevertheless, our prevalence estimates can be used to update existing fatality rates given the large upwards revision of under-ascertainment.
     
    You:

    (2) I’m not entirely sure how representative a sample you’d get from Facebook ads. Perhaps older/sicker people wouldn’t be as likely to respond. Are people in nursing homes on Facebook?
     
    Agreed. Here is what the paper had to say about that.

    This study had several limitations. First, our sampling strategy selected for members of Santa Clara County with access to Facebook and a car to attend drive-through testing sites. This resulted in an overrepresentation of white women between the ages of 19 and 64, and an under-representation of Hispanic and Asian populations, relative to our community. Those imbalances were partly addressed by weighting our sample population by zip code, race, and sex to match the county. We did not account for age imbalance in our sample, and could not ascertain representativeness of SARS-CoV-2 antibodies in homeless populations. Other biases, such as bias favoring individuals in good health capable of attending our testing sites, or bias favoring those with prior COVID-like illnesses seeking antibody confirmation are also possible. The overall effect of such biases is hard to ascertain.
     
    You:

    (3) The death rate most widely quoted had been 1%, which is what I’d generally assumed. But as of a few days ago, I’d been persuaded by the supposedly very large number of asymptomatic Iceland infections that the correct figure might be considerably lower, perhaps IFR=0.5%. So these SC results seem extreme, but not totally outlandish to me.
     
    Agreed. On April 4th I commented: "My own current estimate of the IFR is 1%, with a decent chance of 0.5%. There is significant uncertainty there though. It will be interesting to see if we ever do get a decent estimate."
    https://www.unz.com/isteve/l-a-mayor-public-should-wear-masks-but-not-n95s/#comment-3816684

    (4) Anyway, as someone already mentioned, consider NY. Deaths are currently running 1000/day and should very soon hit 20K total, probably a substantial underestimate based on that “excess death” analysis in the NYT. The state has a population of 20M. So unless you believe that *everyone* in NY was infected weeks ago, how does a IFR=0.1% make any sense? Lombardy is even more extreme.
     
    Good point. Worth repeating. Perhaps some of the low-IFR advocates could offer a response?

    The bottom line is that there seems a great deal of rather contradictory IFR evidence coming from all sorts of different countries, cities, and states, and it may take time and effort to clear up the confusion and figure out what’s correct.

    I’ve certainly never claimed to be a medical expert, and perhaps IFR=1.0% is indeed too high, but I’d argue that IFR=0.1% is far too low.
     
    Agreed (except I would probably omit the "far" from "far too low"). I think we will find there is no one true IFR. Whether or not we get any kind of decent handle on what contributes to the differences remains to be seen.

    It is worth noting that agreement on things like R0 and IFR is uncommon for flu seasons in general.

    I think the IFR for the under-65s is probably under 0.1%. Most of the debate I see here is really between people that think we should spend unlimited amounts of money to give the old and sick a few more years to live and those that believe a robust society invests in the next generation.

    • Replies: @res
    Hard to say. I've been tending to take these numbers and divide by two (for half asymptomatic seen in Iceland) for my 1% estimate. If you divide by another two for a 0.5% overall IFR that would put the 0.1% threshold around 50.
    https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/coronavirus-age-sex-demographics/
  121. @Sam Haysom
    I prefer my plan of beginning tomorrow we launch a 24 hour go fund me. If boomers deposit 400 million dollars of assets before time runs out- the lockdown is extended one more day. On day 2 it goes up to 500 million dollars. And so on.

    Additionally boomers can designate 100 I’ll call them fatties (morbidly obese boomers you probably qualify). At the end of each week if these 100 fatties lose an average of ten pounds each the amount of the go fund me is reduced 100 million dollars.

    You believe in the just-world fallacy. You made the right choices, aren’t fat, so a virus can’t affect you.

    I’d be happy to let you have that belief so long as you agree to forsake use of the healthcare system and wear the badge.

    • Replies: @Nonsubhomine
    Oooh a named fallacy, and identified by mind reading no less!

    A person might believe that a virus won’t affect him because, in the end, it’s not a particularly dangerous virus. That is just cost/benefit analysis that normal people do on a regular basis. There is no “just world fallacy” involved in taking a commercial flight: most people realize that the benefits, on average, greatly outweigh the costs.
  122. @Polynikes

    Again, that is only true because of the social distancing restrictions that have been put in place by most states.
     
    There’s little evidence for that, at least in terms of lockdowns. Steve posted the Chinese study that indicates keeping people at home may be increasing the spread.

    There’s little evidence for that, at least in terms of lockdowns. Steve posted the Chinese study that indicates keeping people at home may be increasing the spread.

    Why look at the Chinese study when we have fifty different experiments happening in the states?

    We can take a look at the daily percentage growth in the infection rates in various states since they’ve put restrictions in place. I’ve looked at several, and they suggest the restrictions are working in slowing the spread. The rates usually go from 25 all the way up to 100 percent growth per day to less than 5 percent.

    I don’t think it makes any sense to believe that staying home isolated from others makes it easier to spread an infectious disease among your family members. What families don’t typically live in close proximity? Chinese businessmen with mistresses holed up in an apartment on the other side of town, maybe?

    • Replies: @TomSchmidt
    "We can take a look at the daily percentage growth in the infection rates in various states since they’ve put restrictions in place."
    Those are bullshit numbers based on biased data. At least the Santa Clara numbers do something to avoid bias. Literally NO state is tracking "growth in the infection rates." The best state-wide data is death rates, and those are going to have to be adjusted for all the deaths miscoded for and against the virus (and there's real incentive now to code everything FOR the virus, so overall deaths may be the only reliable number)

    " I’ve looked at several, and they suggest the restrictions are working in slowing the spread."
    I would look askance on anyone who thought that the lockdown wouldn't slow the spread. I assume it has, even though it is a disastrous policy.

    Interestingly, Andrew Cuomo is gradually coming around to the iSteve idea from February: mask everybody. His literal words a few days ago were "if you cannot practice social distancing, wear a mask." He is VERY close to realizing what the Taiwanese and Koreans already know: masking is social distancing, without all the gestapo questioning people out and about, and without the Pavel Morozovs ratting out their fellow citizens to the authorities for violating rules. It's also easy to enforce.
  123. This result is heavily dependent on the rate of false positives for the anti-body test, and there is something sketchy going on. First, the manufacturers rate of false negatives 96% (I’m averaging 100% and 91.8% for the two antibodies ) and the false negative rate of 67.6% that the Stanford group found from testing locally clinically confirmed cases are outside of each other’s 95% confidence intervals. For false positives, the Stanford group only tested 30 pre-covid samples (to be sure they are true negatives) all of which tested negative, which means they can’t rule out a 3% false positive rate at all using only this data (you can’t tell if the there should have been 1 false positive on average in a sample of 30 but you got 0 this time) and even if the false positive rate is 6% the probability of 0 positive results in a sample of 30 true negatives is 15%. The manufacturer tested 371 pre-covid samples and found 2 positives, which together with the Stanford groups 30 is enough to reject the hypothesis that all of the raw positives in the study were false at 94% confidence. But since the other validation data differ so much between the manufacturer and the Stanford group I’m not sure if trusting the manufacturer’s data is warranted. If you ignore the manufacturer’s validation data then there is simply no result here at all.

    The positive test rate adjusted for demographics (but not adjusted for test errors) is 2.8% compared to 1.5% raw, so there are substantial differences between demographic groups. Men and hispanics in particular are underrepresented and so must have tested positive at a higher rate than the average. If the results were broken down by demographic group then a better estimate of the false positive rate might be calculated but they didn’t do that.

  124. @Mike_from_SGV
    I respect anyone who does good work, but...Good grief that author list. Isn't anyone named Johnson, Smith, or Jones going into research fields like this (or perhaps even being allowed to)?

    Lots of Johnsons, Smiths, Joneses in the NBA and the NFL. It must be because all other avenues of advancement are closed to them. They are not allowed to do 20+ years of schooling plus a postdoc, only to face uncertain job prospects in academia and an OK, but not great, salary.

  125. @O'Really
    The smoking gun on the Bay area study:
    https://twitter.com/mattmcnaughton/status/1251322235484168192

    Razib Khan is a CoronaPanic supporter?

    Razib “self quarantine if you” Khan
    @razibkhan

    […] the [Santa Clara] results aren’t really consistent with a bunch of other stuff

  126. Razib Khan is a CoronaPanic supporter?

  127. anon[364] • Disclaimer says:
    @O'Really
    This is interesting: https://www.bostonglobe.com/2020/04/17/business/nearly-third-200-blood-samples-taken-chelsea-show-exposure-coronavirus/

    Semi-random ("Man on the Street" method) serosurvey in a hard-hit, Latino-majority Boston suburb demonstrates 32% positive rate. [Full details of false positives, etc. not available in this news report.]

    Given the size of the town (~40,000) and number of recorded deaths (39), this would result in a 0.3% IFR not adjusting for time lag, so maybe more like 0.4-0.5%.

    It has been claimed that Chelsea, MA residents are less healthy due to being wedged between the Tobin Bridge/Rt. 1 and the Logan airport, having high exposure due to using public transportation more, being “essential workers”, and high population density, and, you know, “structural racism”.

    That is to say, their IFR might be elevated. It’s less a suburb and more a city neighborhood of Boston, and so poorly run, Boston had to take Chelsea into receivership some years ago. On the plus side, it is on the water and has pleasant views of the Boston harbor.
    All of the hardest hit communities in MA are heavily Latino and/or Black.

    • Replies: @O'Really
    Helpful context - thanks.

    Also worth noting that the "man on the street" methodology is biased towards...men on the street.

    That is, people who are mostly hiding out in their homes will tend to be missed by this method, so the subjects sampled are skewed towards those more exposed.
  128. @AnotherDad

    Shouldn’t a 1% death rate indicate 5000 to 8000 dead in Santa Clara County alone by now?
     
    Check math.

    Fair enough. 500 to 800 deaths then. California in total has a little over 1000 deaths. So again, where is this spike in deaths for Santa Clara County?

  129. @XYZ (no Mr.)
    Because the mortality rate is separate from the infection rate for all but the most deadly diseases.

    The flu appears to spread much more slowly than the Wuhan virus. Imagine if everyone in America got the flu at the exact same time. If you collapsed all the deaths from a bad flu season into one month it would be very rough indeed. Which is exactly what we are seeing now.

    That is very different than saying if you get the virus you are much more likely to die than if you get the flu.

    And the Wuhan virus may certainly be deadlier on average than the flu to an individual, but the factor certainly appears to be trending down from 10 or 20 times deadlier as first estimated, to perhaps a few.

    You have people in their 50s and 60s dying by the dozen in the same hospital day after day. The flu simply doesn’t decimate middle aged people in this fashion. It’s a freak occurrence for a hospital to have a single flu death in a relatively healthy person during the entire flu season, yet here we have hundreds succumbing per day in a single city. It does not add up to merely a compressed flu season no matter how you slice it.

    • Replies: @XYZ (no Mr.)
    A bad flu season can kill up to 100K Americans. So yes, compressed it would be very bad. But it would also be widespread, not focused in one area, that is true. The events in NYC have not been replicated around the country, even in states with weak shelter orders. So what is it? If suburban Santa Clara County -- everyone drives alone -- is at 4 percent, what is NYC?
    , @vhrm

    You have people in their 50s and 60s dying by the dozen in the same hospital day after day.
     
    Do we, though? i wonder if there exists a hospital in the US where 12+ people 50 -69 have died of Covid-19 on two consecutive days.


    This article from 6 days ago in NYC looks at some of the hardest hit hospitals (though not necessarily THE hardest hit) and the highest single day number mentioned is 18 deaths. For another hospital they mention a peak of 13 hit twice on Tues and Friday.

    https://nypost.com/2020/04/11/two-nyc-hospitals-grapple-with-rising-coronavirus-deaths/

    Given what we know from elsewhere about the age distribution it's likely that something like what 1/4th maybe are under 70?

    I understand you're just saying that "more middle age people die of Covid-19 than do of flu", and that's probably true, but the specific doing by the dozens every day image i don't think is even close to happening on the US.
  130. @Ron Unz

    Be careful with impudent questions like that, XYZ. You’ll get labeled a Krazy Korona Hoaxer by certain parties.
     
    Not really. But the commenter you endorsed does have problems with multiplication, and since you didn't notice, perhaps you do as well.

    You’ve never had a problem pushing wildly inflated death estimates before….why give me grief, Ron?

    As you have said, this ain’t global warming, we’ll see who is right soon enough.

    • Replies: @Ron Unz

    You’ve never had a problem pushing wildly inflated death estimates before….why give me grief, Ron?
     
    Well, I don't know about that...

    Back three or four weeks ago when NY deaths were running around 50/day, I boldly predicted they might reach 500 or perhaps even 1000 by Easter, thereby drawing a huge number of attacks and insults:

    https://www.unz.com/isteve/so-uh-what-just-happened/#comment-3793485

    But sure enough, that's exactly what happened, and much sooner than I had projected:

    https://www.unz.com/isteve/is-the-subway-why-new-york-city-is-so-hard-hit/#comment-3829467

    On the other hand, the big surprise to me has been that the NY health system didn't totally crash, which would have quickly raised deaths to more like 4K-5K/day. That's because serious hospitalizations have been running 85% lower than predicted:

    https://www.unz.com/isteve/is-the-subway-why-new-york-city-is-so-hard-hit/#comment-3829519

    I'm not sure why that's the case. Maybe it's the widespread early use of those special drugs that some Chinese doctors had recommended.

    Anyway, NY deaths are still rising, and are probably well north of 20K by now, while Michigan is really starting to take off. Don't forget that the first NY death was only five weeks ago. Going from zero to 20K that quickly is what an exponential process looks like. Why are you so sure it can't possibly happen elsewhere?

    And all of that is despite America adopting an absolutely unprecedented national health care lockdown. Just imagine what the numbers would be otherwise. And what might still happen if the lockdown is prematurely reversed.

    I'm certainly not claiming that all my predictions have been correct. But were you expecting to see something like 30K American deaths just in the first couple of weeks of April? And despite a huge national lockdown?
  131. Anonymous[987] • Disclaimer says:

    eh they got the false positive rate by find 2 false positives out of 400 controls.
    Because most people aren’t immune, even a small false positive rate would cause most detections to be mistakes.

    So maybe the false positive rate is 2/400=0.5% like they use.
    Or maybe that was a low estimate from the vagaries of random sampling.
    How much would you wager that number shouldn’t really 1 or 3 or 4 our of 400 ?

    And if its 6/400 =1.5% then all the positive are false positives and this is a nothing burger experiment.

    Hard to be that confident with small number statistics. They need to replicate and repeat.

    • Replies: @utu
    Excellent point. One may think that the effect of false positives will be cancelled by false negatives but this is not the case when the infection rate is small.

    IR_est=[(N-n)*PFP+ n*(1-PFN)]/N=(1-IR)*PFP+IR*(1-PFN)= IR*(1-PFN-PFP) +PFP

    PFP -probability of false positive
    PFN -probability of false negative
    N - sample size
    n - number of infected
    IR - actual infection rate
    IR_est - estimated infection rate

    The cancellation of errors happens when IR=PFP/(PFP+PFN). When IR<PFP/(PFP+PFN) then a good approximation is IR_est≈IR+PFP, meaning that for small IR the result is always overestimated but it could be corrected by subtracting PFP from the result.

    In the Appendix
    https://www.medrxiv.org/content/medrxiv/suppl/2020/04/17/2020.04.14.20062463.DC1/2020.04.14.20062463-1.pdf

    bases on the test manufacturer specifications (out of 371 negative samples 2 tested positive) and their own small (n=30) test negative sample that all 30 tested negative they estimate the specificity to be 99.5%, meaning that PFP=0.005. Did they subtract this PFP from their result?
    , @utu
    Excellent point. One may think that the effect of false positives will be cancelled by false negatives but this is not the case when the infection rate is small.

    IR_est=[(N-n)*PFP+ n*(1-PFN)]/N=(1-IR)*PFP+IR*(1-PFN)= IR*(1-PFN-PFP) +PFP

    PFP -probability of false positive
    PFN -probability of false negative
    N – sample size
    n – number of infected
    IR – actual infection rate
    IR_est – estimated infection rate

    The cancellation of errors happens when IR=PFP/(PFP+PFN). When IR<PFP/(PFP+PFN) then a good approximation is IR_est≈IR+PFP, meaning that for small IR the result is always overestimated but it could be corrected by subtracting PFP from the result.

    In the Appendix
    https://www.medrxiv.org/content/medrxiv/suppl/2020/04/17/2020.04.14.20062463.DC1/2020.04.14.20062463-1.pdf

    bases on the test manufacturer specifications (out of 371 negative samples 2 tested positive) and their own small (n=30) test negative sample that all 30 tested negative they estimate the specificity to be 99.5%, meaning that PFP=0.005. Did they subtract this PFP from their result?
  132. @Mike_from_SGV
    I respect anyone who does good work, but...Good grief that author list. Isn't anyone named Johnson, Smith, or Jones going into research fields like this (or perhaps even being allowed to)?

    They are all busy running their hedge funds longing/shorting/calling/putting various drug maker stocks based on how the research/testing is saying. Alternately, they may be figuring out whom to sue/defend for all the thousands of deaths, Hey, somebody has to be responsible. They may also be writing juicy text that will become CARES Act XXXIV that will enrich their clients. All these jobs pay lot higher than dealing with deadly viruses in an infectious diseases lab. Division of labor, Capitalism 101.

    • Thanks: moshe
  133. @anon
    It has been claimed that Chelsea, MA residents are less healthy due to being wedged between the Tobin Bridge/Rt. 1 and the Logan airport, having high exposure due to using public transportation more, being "essential workers", and high population density, and, you know, "structural racism".

    That is to say, their IFR might be elevated. It's less a suburb and more a city neighborhood of Boston, and so poorly run, Boston had to take Chelsea into receivership some years ago. On the plus side, it is on the water and has pleasant views of the Boston harbor.
    All of the hardest hit communities in MA are heavily Latino and/or Black.

    Helpful context – thanks.

    Also worth noting that the “man on the street” methodology is biased towards…men on the street.

    That is, people who are mostly hiding out in their homes will tend to be missed by this method, so the subjects sampled are skewed towards those more exposed.

  134. @Anonymous (n)
    You have people in their 50s and 60s dying by the dozen in the same hospital day after day. The flu simply doesn't decimate middle aged people in this fashion. It's a freak occurrence for a hospital to have a single flu death in a relatively healthy person during the entire flu season, yet here we have hundreds succumbing per day in a single city. It does not add up to merely a compressed flu season no matter how you slice it.

    A bad flu season can kill up to 100K Americans. So yes, compressed it would be very bad. But it would also be widespread, not focused in one area, that is true. The events in NYC have not been replicated around the country, even in states with weak shelter orders. So what is it? If suburban Santa Clara County — everyone drives alone — is at 4 percent, what is NYC?

  135. @Alden
    The homeless have fewer Chinese virus patient than the housed and employees. That’s because they are outside most of the time breathing fresh air, not cooped up with fellow workers breathing each other’s germs and viruses. Plus they get more virus killing sunshine than workers or those with homes.

    The homeless have fewer Chinese virus patient than the housed and employees. That’s because they are outside most of the time breathing fresh air, not cooped up with fellow workers breathing each other’s germs and viruses. Plus they get more virus killing sunshine than workers or those with homes.

    This is why all parks should be open. All beaches too. It is supremely evil and dumb to keep people cooped up and away from fresh air and sunshine. This virus wafts into the air and becomes meaningless in the outdoors. And I mean even Central Park in NYC if it becomes crowded on a nice spring day. Spring is here and thank God people are rebelling against the evil retard Democrat governors of some states. Michigan being the prime example right now. Jay Inslee (Washington) awful too.

    Power tripping Democrat Governors that are evil-dumb, are now adding to the familiar anarcho-tyranny. Idiocracy has arrived early in some states.

    • Agree: Hail
  136. Given that SARS-CoV2 is known to evade the immune system at early very long long lasting stages is possible that the antibody test might be underestimating/undercounting the infection rate and therefore some of the estimates are skewed?

  137. ” We did not account for age imbalance in our sample”

    If old people who have much higher mortality rate are underrepresented in the sample and if the old people due to the countermeasures are shielded better from the virus than the rest of population so their infection rate is smaller than average then the IFR derived from the Stanford study is underestimated.

    • Agree: Pincher Martin
  138. @Steve Sailer
    The early data out of Northern Italy, Spain, UK, and NYC suggested that official coronavirus deaths were only a fraction, such as one half, of total excess mortality. One reason was often due to only counting deaths in hospitals as due to CV.

    Recently, counting methods have tended to change toward counting more CV deaths.

    The early data out of Northern Italy, Spain, UK, and NYC suggested that official coronavirus deaths were only a fraction, such as one half, of total excess mortality. One reason was often due to only counting deaths in hospitals as due to CV.

    But how many of those people who died at home died from coronavirus, rather than just dying of stroke, heart-attack, or even neglect. A lot of younger-to-middle-aged people have been holding their elderly relatives at arms length so as to not infect them. And I have read that, in Italy, a lot of home health-care workers were foreigners (eastern european) who left Italy when the lockdown began, so as not to get stranded there. How many old people have been dying at home of neglect?

    As to old folks dying in nursing homes – those should be the easiest people to isolate from potential infection spreaders and protect. Social distancing would have done little to help them.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    Old people in nursing homes need not old people to take care of them. They are the hardest to isolate from the not old.
  139. @Anonymous

    Small business is extinct. Permanently. Period.
     
    No, small business is never extinct. Even in the Soviet Union where it was outright illegal, there were small businesses.

    But small business is inherently ephemeral. People start them, and wind them up. By nature, it's a rough way to make a living. Conservatives and the GOP constantly promote and aggrandize small business when in truth, a lot of people have no business being in business for themselves and do much better as employees in a paternalistic corporation with benefits.

    The fifties, sixties and seventies were the golden era of being a working class schlub because a 100 IQ guy could get a union job, or a nonunion job from a plant that paid more to keep the union out, with a defined benefit pension plan (because even most white people can not plan very well for their future-let alone blacks and mestizos) and healthcare. A lot of people sent their kids through college largely or wholly on their dime, bought little vacation houses and boats and even airplanes, and had comfortable retirements who in their own businesses would have made a major cock-up of it and died penniless.

    Even bigger businesses fail more often than they succeed. Apple started small and are now the biggest business on planet, but look at Commodore, look at Gateway 2000, look at all the high flying workstation companies of the late 80s. Look at all the dead retailers, the dead restaurant chains.

    The mill hunkies and Polacks in my family who worked in Chicago-Republic Steel, IH Wisconsin Steel, USS South Works-had good lives and are all dead now, but most of them died happier than their kids,most of them became engineers and accountants and such and had decent lives and families but they worked 70, 80 hour weeks, they had more stuff but their kids in turn went to shit as often as not due to a total lack of parental attention.

    If people need encouragement to start their own businesses, they shouldn't be starting their own businesses-it's a pretty good rule. The GOP of the Chamber of Commerce needs to die, worse than the Democrats do. We need to rig the system so if you want to make a lot of money and have the capacity for hard smart work, the drive and the ruthlessness you can, but you have to be a net asset and not a net liability to Joe Average. Offshoring manufacturing needs to be made unprofitable or marginally profitable. The FIRE sector needs trimming down to size.

    It won't happen, of course, because in the long run the Empire is doomed and there is going to be an enormous upheaval. And in the short run, Joe Average is too naive, too unorganized, too bovine to do what needs doing.

    One of the better all around comments of late. You should pick a screen name.

  140. “but it also went heavily for work-from-home fairly early in March and has a population that is way above the American average in the cognitive power to grasp and follow new rules.”

    Most Americans can understand a new rule if it is explained in concrete terms (e.g. self isolation and avoidance of public events is a good thing, because it prevents unnecessary infection and possible death). Northern CA, and CA in general had the advantage of being among the earliest states to shut down their state economy before the virus got out of hand. Hopefully this action continues for as long as necessary.

  141. @Mr. Anon

    The early data out of Northern Italy, Spain, UK, and NYC suggested that official coronavirus deaths were only a fraction, such as one half, of total excess mortality. One reason was often due to only counting deaths in hospitals as due to CV.
     
    But how many of those people who died at home died from coronavirus, rather than just dying of stroke, heart-attack, or even neglect. A lot of younger-to-middle-aged people have been holding their elderly relatives at arms length so as to not infect them. And I have read that, in Italy, a lot of home health-care workers were foreigners (eastern european) who left Italy when the lockdown began, so as not to get stranded there. How many old people have been dying at home of neglect?

    As to old folks dying in nursing homes - those should be the easiest people to isolate from potential infection spreaders and protect. Social distancing would have done little to help them.

    Old people in nursing homes need not old people to take care of them. They are the hardest to isolate from the not old.

    • Replies: @danand

    "Old people in nursing homes need not old people to take care of them."
     

    "ABC7 I-Team has learned that an Indian film actor owns the East Bay nursing home that is now under criminal investigation, after at least 13 patients died in a coronavirus outbreak.

    "Staff was encouraged, they were pressured to come and work even though Gateway knew the staff were positive with the virus. You had a situation here that was just a tinder box ready to explode."

    A total of 45 patients have tested positive for COVID-19 since the outbreak was first announced last week, with 23 staff members and 22 residents falling ill with the virus.

    88-year-old Korean War veteran Costell Akrie was only supposed to stay at Gateway for physical therapy for a couple of weeks. Instead, he contracted the coronavirus during his stay and died on April 4th."
     
    An elderly woman sent back to this same Gateway (to heaven, or hell) nursing home from where she contracted her coronavirus. Fortunately the woman was treated at the hospital (just South of Oakland California) with the Hydroxychloroquine/Zpack cocktail and perked right up.

    "Kaiser Permanente wants to send 89-year-old novel coronavirus patient Evelyn Tomei back to the nursing home where she contracted it. She is terrified. Her family is terrified, and they asked the I-Team's Chief Investigative Reporter Dan Noyes to investigate.

    "I don't want to die," said Tomei, who is a two-time cancer survivor who is currently battling bronchitis and COVID-19, which she contracted at Gateway Care and Rehabilitation in Hayward.

    A nurse manager at Gateway Care, who didn't want to give his name, said the staff at the rehabilitation center is at wits end, working very long hours.

    Now at Kaiser Fremont, doctors say Tomei has responded to hydroxychloroquine treatments, so they want to send her back to Gateway.

    Kaiser said in an emailed statement, "Mrs. Tomei no longer needs acute care and is ready to be discharged. It is important to understand that being a COVID-positive patient, living with other patients with the virus does not pose an increased risk to a patient's health and safety."

    Dr. Wasserman says the risk is possibly creating another Kirkland, the nursing home in Washington State that's seen more than 120 cases and at least 37 deaths."
     
    https://abc7news.com/video/embed/?pid=6103855
    , @Mr. Anon
    But they can restrict visitors, especially children. The residents don't have to go out. And the staff can not come in to work when they're sick and they can wear PPE. This may not happen at a lot of nursing homes, but there's no reason it can't or shouldn't happen. It would be easier to keep the very old and infirm in old folks homes away from the rest of us by isolating them than by isolating the entire rest of the World.
  142. @The one
    I think the IFR for the under-65s is probably under 0.1%. Most of the debate I see here is really between people that think we should spend unlimited amounts of money to give the old and sick a few more years to live and those that believe a robust society invests in the next generation.

    Hard to say. I’ve been tending to take these numbers and divide by two (for half asymptomatic seen in Iceland) for my 1% estimate. If you divide by another two for a 0.5% overall IFR that would put the 0.1% threshold around 50.
    https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/coronavirus-age-sex-demographics/

    • Replies: @The one
    In the NYC 25% of deaths under 65 yo. In Europe less than 10% of deaths are under 65 and more than half of all deaths are in nursing homes (Spain 12,000 out of 20,000).
  143. @Mike_from_SGV
    I respect anyone who does good work, but...Good grief that author list. Isn't anyone named Johnson, Smith, or Jones going into research fields like this (or perhaps even being allowed to)?

    I respect anyone who does good work, but…Good grief that author list. Isn’t anyone named Johnson, Smith, or Jones going into research fields like this (or perhaps even being allowed to)?

    Allowed to? sure. But if Johnson, Smith, or Jones have the brains for this massive they got hip to the game and are off in finance or marketing somewhere making a lot of money instead.

    (not that I’m questioning my life choices or anything… >.> )

  144. @Anonymous (n)
    You have people in their 50s and 60s dying by the dozen in the same hospital day after day. The flu simply doesn't decimate middle aged people in this fashion. It's a freak occurrence for a hospital to have a single flu death in a relatively healthy person during the entire flu season, yet here we have hundreds succumbing per day in a single city. It does not add up to merely a compressed flu season no matter how you slice it.

    You have people in their 50s and 60s dying by the dozen in the same hospital day after day.

    Do we, though? i wonder if there exists a hospital in the US where 12+ people 50 -69 have died of Covid-19 on two consecutive days.

    This article from 6 days ago in NYC looks at some of the hardest hit hospitals (though not necessarily THE hardest hit) and the highest single day number mentioned is 18 deaths. For another hospital they mention a peak of 13 hit twice on Tues and Friday.

    https://nypost.com/2020/04/11/two-nyc-hospitals-grapple-with-rising-coronavirus-deaths/

    Given what we know from elsewhere about the age distribution it’s likely that something like what 1/4th maybe are under 70?

    I understand you’re just saying that “more middle age people die of Covid-19 than do of flu”, and that’s probably true, but the specific doing by the dozens every day image i don’t think is even close to happening on the US.

  145. @res

    (1) The claim is that Santa Clara County actually had 48K-81K infections as of two weeks ago, and currently has 73 deaths, suggesting an IFR of 0.10%-0.15%. But the infection-to-death period is generally three weeks and often runs considerably longer, as shown from the South Korea data. So we really should look at the total deaths a week or two from now, which may be substantially larger.
     
    They actually assumed 3 weeks and extrapolated the deaths. We'll have a better idea on 4/22 if they were on target. Here is the relevant part of the paper.

    We can use our prevalence estimates to approximate the infection fatality rate from COVID-19 in Santa Clara County. As of April 10, 2020, 50 people have died of COVID-19 in the County, with an average increase of 6% daily in the number of deaths. If our estimates of 48,000-81,000 infections represent the cumulative total on April 1, and we project deaths to April 22 (a 3 week lag from time of infection to death22), we estimate about 100 deaths in the county. A hundred deaths out of 48,000-81,000 infections corresponds to an infection fatality rate of 0.12-0.2%. If antibodies take longer than 3 days to appear, if the average duration from case identification to death is less than 3 weeks, or if the epidemic wave has peaked and growth in deaths is less than 6% daily, then the infection fatality rate would be lower. These straightforward estimations of infection fatality rate fail to account for age structure and changing treatment approaches to COVID-19. Nevertheless, our prevalence estimates can be used to update existing fatality rates given the large upwards revision of under-ascertainment.
     
    You:

    (2) I’m not entirely sure how representative a sample you’d get from Facebook ads. Perhaps older/sicker people wouldn’t be as likely to respond. Are people in nursing homes on Facebook?
     
    Agreed. Here is what the paper had to say about that.

    This study had several limitations. First, our sampling strategy selected for members of Santa Clara County with access to Facebook and a car to attend drive-through testing sites. This resulted in an overrepresentation of white women between the ages of 19 and 64, and an under-representation of Hispanic and Asian populations, relative to our community. Those imbalances were partly addressed by weighting our sample population by zip code, race, and sex to match the county. We did not account for age imbalance in our sample, and could not ascertain representativeness of SARS-CoV-2 antibodies in homeless populations. Other biases, such as bias favoring individuals in good health capable of attending our testing sites, or bias favoring those with prior COVID-like illnesses seeking antibody confirmation are also possible. The overall effect of such biases is hard to ascertain.
     
    You:

    (3) The death rate most widely quoted had been 1%, which is what I’d generally assumed. But as of a few days ago, I’d been persuaded by the supposedly very large number of asymptomatic Iceland infections that the correct figure might be considerably lower, perhaps IFR=0.5%. So these SC results seem extreme, but not totally outlandish to me.
     
    Agreed. On April 4th I commented: "My own current estimate of the IFR is 1%, with a decent chance of 0.5%. There is significant uncertainty there though. It will be interesting to see if we ever do get a decent estimate."
    https://www.unz.com/isteve/l-a-mayor-public-should-wear-masks-but-not-n95s/#comment-3816684

    (4) Anyway, as someone already mentioned, consider NY. Deaths are currently running 1000/day and should very soon hit 20K total, probably a substantial underestimate based on that “excess death” analysis in the NYT. The state has a population of 20M. So unless you believe that *everyone* in NY was infected weeks ago, how does a IFR=0.1% make any sense? Lombardy is even more extreme.
     
    Good point. Worth repeating. Perhaps some of the low-IFR advocates could offer a response?

    The bottom line is that there seems a great deal of rather contradictory IFR evidence coming from all sorts of different countries, cities, and states, and it may take time and effort to clear up the confusion and figure out what’s correct.

    I’ve certainly never claimed to be a medical expert, and perhaps IFR=1.0% is indeed too high, but I’d argue that IFR=0.1% is far too low.
     
    Agreed (except I would probably omit the "far" from "far too low"). I think we will find there is no one true IFR. Whether or not we get any kind of decent handle on what contributes to the differences remains to be seen.

    It is worth noting that agreement on things like R0 and IFR is uncommon for flu seasons in general.

    There is significant uncertainty there though. It will be interesting to see if we ever do get a decent estimate.

    Probably not. IFR is strongly age dependent. Its value may change by orders of magnitude between age=20 and age=80. Also the infection rate will be age dependent. The old folks are less mobile and can have lower infection rate as they are the ones who take protective measures more seriously and otoh when in group home living like a nursing home they are more vulnerable and at the mercy of careless staff.

    Therefore, imo, IFR estimates can vary widely from place to place and from study to study depending on the age demographics and how the age correction if at all are calculated. I would not be surprised that the same data may yield IFR estimates differing by an order of magnitude. I would go even further: the IFR as a single number is pretty meaningless because the disease outcomes in population with vastly different age demographic will be very different. Perhaps CDC and WHO have a standard population of age demographics against which the IFR is calculated.

    When the authors of the Stanford paper say “We did not account for age imbalance in our sample” they should also state that while their work is meaningful to establish the infection rate in the population it cannot yield good a estimate do the death rate.

    • Replies: @Anon
    Fatalities may be related to a bad diagnosis. Italians have discovered (through autopsies) covid19 is not a respiratory insufficiency problem, but a disseminated micro thrombosis. There is hope and evidence the new diagnosis allows for home treatment.
    https://www.maurizioblondet.it/eparina-funziona-scoperta-del-genio-italico-e-il-suo-contrario/

    The Anglosphere media is very quite about this, only hinting that heroic New York doctors question use of ventilators (see Daily Mail)

    In Spain, Italy and Mexico, doctors are already treating with anti-inflammatories, anti-coagulants and antibiotics (if required). An internist suggested, for example: a throat medicine Bisolvon, Ivermectin or Hidroxicloroquina, Tylex 750 (ibuprofen still controversial), and two subcutaneous inyections a day of Clexane 60mg S.C. (heparin).
  146. @Anonymous

    Small business is extinct. Permanently. Period.
     
    No, small business is never extinct. Even in the Soviet Union where it was outright illegal, there were small businesses.

    But small business is inherently ephemeral. People start them, and wind them up. By nature, it's a rough way to make a living. Conservatives and the GOP constantly promote and aggrandize small business when in truth, a lot of people have no business being in business for themselves and do much better as employees in a paternalistic corporation with benefits.

    The fifties, sixties and seventies were the golden era of being a working class schlub because a 100 IQ guy could get a union job, or a nonunion job from a plant that paid more to keep the union out, with a defined benefit pension plan (because even most white people can not plan very well for their future-let alone blacks and mestizos) and healthcare. A lot of people sent their kids through college largely or wholly on their dime, bought little vacation houses and boats and even airplanes, and had comfortable retirements who in their own businesses would have made a major cock-up of it and died penniless.

    Even bigger businesses fail more often than they succeed. Apple started small and are now the biggest business on planet, but look at Commodore, look at Gateway 2000, look at all the high flying workstation companies of the late 80s. Look at all the dead retailers, the dead restaurant chains.

    The mill hunkies and Polacks in my family who worked in Chicago-Republic Steel, IH Wisconsin Steel, USS South Works-had good lives and are all dead now, but most of them died happier than their kids,most of them became engineers and accountants and such and had decent lives and families but they worked 70, 80 hour weeks, they had more stuff but their kids in turn went to shit as often as not due to a total lack of parental attention.

    If people need encouragement to start their own businesses, they shouldn't be starting their own businesses-it's a pretty good rule. The GOP of the Chamber of Commerce needs to die, worse than the Democrats do. We need to rig the system so if you want to make a lot of money and have the capacity for hard smart work, the drive and the ruthlessness you can, but you have to be a net asset and not a net liability to Joe Average. Offshoring manufacturing needs to be made unprofitable or marginally profitable. The FIRE sector needs trimming down to size.

    It won't happen, of course, because in the long run the Empire is doomed and there is going to be an enormous upheaval. And in the short run, Joe Average is too naive, too unorganized, too bovine to do what needs doing.

    So you want us to be Sweden, or Japan. Big businesses, big taxes, big loopholes. The zaibatsu life.

  147. @Jake
    Shouldn't the homeless be dying and nearly dying of Covid-19 in huge numbers?

    They have underlying issues, and they do not follow orders; nor do they have common sense.

    The homeless are exposed to far more dirt than most people, and are likely to develop immunity to a lot of microbes, including other coronaviruses. Of course, bad diet, alcohol, drugs, lack of sleep, etc. will predispose them to succumb to maladies in general, especially if their immune systems are out of whack. It may be that in this particular case they have acquired some resistance. As a group, they are are exceptional in epidemiological terms.

  148. @Ron Unz
    Actually, I might as well add one very speculative issue, perhaps merely demonstrating my total ignorance of medicine...

    There seems a great deal of evidence that "viral load" may sometimes be an important factor in deaths or serious cases of Coronavirus. For example, lots of young, perfectly healthy doctors have died, something that should otherwise be exceptionally rare. And perhaps the viral load factor is continuous rather than based upon a threshold exposure level.

    I'm wondering whether the antibody test might be entirely independent of viral load. Perhaps 70-80% of the Santa Clara positives had received viral loads far too low to likely cause infection, but still sufficient to produce antibodies. If so, then they might have been "exposed" but not "infected" in the usual sense.

    Obviously, the crucial question would be whether such minimal "exposures" would provide immunity to a more substantial viral load exposure at a later date. If there's little or no immunity, then those "exposures" essentially amount to false positives.

    Like I said, I don't claim to know any medicine so this is just ignorant speculation...

    There seems a great deal of evidence that “viral load” may sometimes be an important factor in deaths or serious cases of Coronavirus

    .

    Dr. Adalja from Johns Hopkins University addressed this very topic back on March 11th in an interview with Sam Harris.

    (Listen to minute 38-39 of the audio podcast:)

    https://samharris.org/podcasts/191-early-thoughts-pandemic/

    His opinion was that viral load likely does influence severity of illness, and that this was well-known for other viral diseases and in animal models of viral illness.

  149. @AnotherDad
    Hate to break it to you Steve, but up here in the nosebleed years your chance of croaking every year is greater than 1%.
    https://www.ssa.gov/oact/STATS/table4c6.html

    Granted most of the 1.24% of 61 year-olds who are supposed to cash in this year, you could sort of guess were "ready". You could probably sort through all the 61 year-olds and pick out the 5% you thought were "in trouble" and they would account for over half of that 1.24%. But they'll be some surprises too.

    We all fly away.

    AnotherDad, just a visual to your data, that I had handy on the desktop:

    C016C78C-233E-4BF5-87B4-88628C3CAA1B

    7E1D20F9-32A2-478F-B88C-88CF3163EFF4

    Interesting that Suicide and Influenza/Pneumonia typically run neck & neck in the US.

  150. it should be infection fatality rate instead of infection fertility rate, shouldn’t it?

  151. If we’d somehow had these results — especially the knowledge that IFR is no worse than flu — in hand six weeks ago then there’d have been no shutdown of anything (except maybe visiting hours at nursing homes).

    I see a quick reopening of the economy now, and within a month new impeachment proceedings centered on an anonymous tip from Uzbekistan that Trump engineered the whole panic.

    • Replies: @anonymous
    These type of skeptical opinions only make sense if it can explain what happened in the worst hit places in Lombardy.
  152. @res
    Hard to say. I've been tending to take these numbers and divide by two (for half asymptomatic seen in Iceland) for my 1% estimate. If you divide by another two for a 0.5% overall IFR that would put the 0.1% threshold around 50.
    https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/coronavirus-age-sex-demographics/

    In the NYC 25% of deaths under 65 yo. In Europe less than 10% of deaths are under 65 and more than half of all deaths are in nursing homes (Spain 12,000 out of 20,000).

  153. @Steve Sailer
    Old people in nursing homes need not old people to take care of them. They are the hardest to isolate from the not old.

    “Old people in nursing homes need not old people to take care of them.”

    “ABC7 I-Team has learned that an Indian film actor owns the East Bay nursing home that is now under criminal investigation, after at least 13 patients died in a coronavirus outbreak.

    Staff was encouraged, they were pressured to come and work even though Gateway knew the staff were positive with the virus. You had a situation here that was just a tinder box ready to explode.”

    A total of 45 patients have tested positive for COVID-19 since the outbreak was first announced last week, with 23 staff members and 22 residents falling ill with the virus.

    88-year-old Korean War veteran Costell Akrie was only supposed to stay at Gateway for physical therapy for a couple of weeks. Instead, he contracted the coronavirus during his stay and died on April 4th.”

    An elderly woman sent back to this same Gateway (to heaven, or hell) nursing home from where she contracted her coronavirus. Fortunately the woman was treated at the hospital (just South of Oakland California) with the Hydroxychloroquine/Zpack cocktail and perked right up.

    “Kaiser Permanente wants to send 89-year-old novel coronavirus patient Evelyn Tomei back to the nursing home where she contracted it. She is terrified. Her family is terrified, and they asked the I-Team’s Chief Investigative Reporter Dan Noyes to investigate.

    “I don’t want to die,” said Tomei, who is a two-time cancer survivor who is currently battling bronchitis and COVID-19, which she contracted at Gateway Care and Rehabilitation in Hayward.

    A nurse manager at Gateway Care, who didn’t want to give his name, said the staff at the rehabilitation center is at wits end, working very long hours.

    Now at Kaiser Fremont, doctors say Tomei has responded to hydroxychloroquine treatments, so they want to send her back to Gateway.

    Kaiser said in an emailed statement, “Mrs. Tomei no longer needs acute care and is ready to be discharged. It is important to understand that being a COVID-positive patient, living with other patients with the virus does not pose an increased risk to a patient’s health and safety.”

    Dr. Wasserman says the risk is possibly creating another Kirkland, the nursing home in Washington State that’s seen more than 120 cases and at least 37 deaths.”

    https://abc7news.com/video/embed/?pid=6103855

  154. Only one question – are those antibody tests any good, and how can they tell? If they are confident in their accuracy, then I’m sure the UK government would like to know – or are they good enough for a rough figure, but no good at individual level – if such a thing is even possible?

    Posted this before

    https://www.research.ox.ac.uk/Article/2020-04-05-trouble-in-testing-land

    There are many challenges to creating accurate tests; hence these tests need to be validated carefully. Other countries such as Spain have already sent tests back because they don’t work. There are 100 or more such tests kits from different suppliers available for identifying Covid-19 antibodies, and it is important that each of these is checked for accuracy before making them available to the public. Crucially it is essential that the test does not tell you are positive for anti-Covid serology when you are not; otherwise you might return to work when you are not immune. Similarly, it is important that the test does not tell you that you are not immune when you actually are.

    Sadly, the tests we have looked at to date have not performed well. We see many false negatives (tests where no antibody is detected despite the fact we know it is there) and we also see false positives. None of the tests we have validated would meet the criteria for a good test as agreed with the MHRA. This is not a good result for test suppliers or for us.

    Interestingly we are not the only ones who having difficulty identifying commercial tests that work in a home test kit format. The Spanish apparently returned test kits that were not working, and the Germans who are developing their own sensitive kits believe they are three months away from getting these available and validated. No (it says ‘Not’, typo assumed – YAA) test has been acclaimed by health authorities as having the necessary characteristics for screening people accurately for protective immunity.

    That is particularly interesting, as the actual CV19 tests (i.e. are you infected as of today?) are not exactly perfect – the consensus on both sides of the Atlantic seems to be that if it’s positive, you have CV19, but in a Chinese study, 30% of the patients admitted with CV symptoms tested negative. That Chinese doctor who died, Li Wenliang, had multiple negative tests.

    If 30% of people ill enough to be hospitalised tested negative, there must be more people with milder symptoms testing negative.

    https://pubs.rsna.org/doi/10.1148/radiol.2020200642

    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-04-11/false-negative-coronavirus-test-results-raise-doctors-doubts

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-51491763

    https://www.medpagetoday.com/infectiousdisease/covid19/85717

  155. It has been clear for a long time this isn’t much worse than a bad flu.

    The economic impact of the lockdown and the unwinding of the huge leverage in the world economy is without precedent though.

    • Replies: @Peter Frost
    "It has been clear for a long time this isn’t much worse than a bad flu."

    Nothing will be clear until a year from now. If you're proven wrong at that time, will you bring the dead back to life?

    We are working with data that would be considered preliminary in any other situation. In this case, we're discussing a study that hasn't even passed peer review. Most papers end up getting rejected, and this is probably one of them. It has two irremediable flaws:

    - the rate of false positives is inevitably many times higher than the rate of false negatives.

    - the death rate is a lagging indicator, but we cannot quantify the time lag with any certainty. The author assumes a two-week lag between infection and death. In my opinion, that assumption is wrong. The real lag is probably longer, but nobody knows how long it should be. Any estimate will be biased toward a short time lag because we are still at the beginning of this pandemic.

    All of these studies suffer from another problem: different populations seem to react differently to the virus. It looks like the virus is most virulent within a belt of territory that covers the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East, and East Asia. Ashkenazi Jews also seem to be badly affected. These are populations that have a long history of coevolving with respiratory viruses in "crowded environments," i.e., where people live in proximity not only to other people but also to domesticated animals. In any case, we should not base our judgments on data from one population and assume that everyone else will react the same way.

    Finally, we focus on the death rate because it presumably leaves little room for uncertainty. There is no such thing as asymptomatic death. A dead body is a dead body.

    Unfortunately, the death rate is not the only way COVID-19 differs from the seasonal flu. COVID-19 causes much more damage to other organs of the body, and most people who get hospitalized will end up suffering some permanent damage to those organs. That outcome is harder to quantify than death, yet it is just as real.
  156. @Anonymous

    Small business is extinct. Permanently. Period.
     
    No, small business is never extinct. Even in the Soviet Union where it was outright illegal, there were small businesses.

    But small business is inherently ephemeral. People start them, and wind them up. By nature, it's a rough way to make a living. Conservatives and the GOP constantly promote and aggrandize small business when in truth, a lot of people have no business being in business for themselves and do much better as employees in a paternalistic corporation with benefits.

    The fifties, sixties and seventies were the golden era of being a working class schlub because a 100 IQ guy could get a union job, or a nonunion job from a plant that paid more to keep the union out, with a defined benefit pension plan (because even most white people can not plan very well for their future-let alone blacks and mestizos) and healthcare. A lot of people sent their kids through college largely or wholly on their dime, bought little vacation houses and boats and even airplanes, and had comfortable retirements who in their own businesses would have made a major cock-up of it and died penniless.

    Even bigger businesses fail more often than they succeed. Apple started small and are now the biggest business on planet, but look at Commodore, look at Gateway 2000, look at all the high flying workstation companies of the late 80s. Look at all the dead retailers, the dead restaurant chains.

    The mill hunkies and Polacks in my family who worked in Chicago-Republic Steel, IH Wisconsin Steel, USS South Works-had good lives and are all dead now, but most of them died happier than their kids,most of them became engineers and accountants and such and had decent lives and families but they worked 70, 80 hour weeks, they had more stuff but their kids in turn went to shit as often as not due to a total lack of parental attention.

    If people need encouragement to start their own businesses, they shouldn't be starting their own businesses-it's a pretty good rule. The GOP of the Chamber of Commerce needs to die, worse than the Democrats do. We need to rig the system so if you want to make a lot of money and have the capacity for hard smart work, the drive and the ruthlessness you can, but you have to be a net asset and not a net liability to Joe Average. Offshoring manufacturing needs to be made unprofitable or marginally profitable. The FIRE sector needs trimming down to size.

    It won't happen, of course, because in the long run the Empire is doomed and there is going to be an enormous upheaval. And in the short run, Joe Average is too naive, too unorganized, too bovine to do what needs doing.

    Even bigger businesses fail more often than they succeed. Apple started small and are now the biggest business on planet, but look at Commodore, look at Gateway 2000, look at all the high flying workstation companies of the late 80s. Look at all the dead retailers, the dead restaurant chains.

    Apple had a near death experience in 1997 and survived because of a loan from Microsoft. Possibly because the latter would otherwise have looked even more like a monopolist.

    https://www.wired.com/2009/08/dayintech-0806/

  157. @Alexander Turok
    Voters in Michigan will keep collecting unemployment. I know you can't imagine any alternative to wagin'. Others can.

    Trump won in 2016 on a populist message. He decided to abandon it for The Dow. He will lose, and he'll deserve to lose.

    I don’t mind Trump losing.
    I mind Biden winning.

  158. @res

    (1) The claim is that Santa Clara County actually had 48K-81K infections as of two weeks ago, and currently has 73 deaths, suggesting an IFR of 0.10%-0.15%. But the infection-to-death period is generally three weeks and often runs considerably longer, as shown from the South Korea data. So we really should look at the total deaths a week or two from now, which may be substantially larger.
     
    They actually assumed 3 weeks and extrapolated the deaths. We'll have a better idea on 4/22 if they were on target. Here is the relevant part of the paper.

    We can use our prevalence estimates to approximate the infection fatality rate from COVID-19 in Santa Clara County. As of April 10, 2020, 50 people have died of COVID-19 in the County, with an average increase of 6% daily in the number of deaths. If our estimates of 48,000-81,000 infections represent the cumulative total on April 1, and we project deaths to April 22 (a 3 week lag from time of infection to death22), we estimate about 100 deaths in the county. A hundred deaths out of 48,000-81,000 infections corresponds to an infection fatality rate of 0.12-0.2%. If antibodies take longer than 3 days to appear, if the average duration from case identification to death is less than 3 weeks, or if the epidemic wave has peaked and growth in deaths is less than 6% daily, then the infection fatality rate would be lower. These straightforward estimations of infection fatality rate fail to account for age structure and changing treatment approaches to COVID-19. Nevertheless, our prevalence estimates can be used to update existing fatality rates given the large upwards revision of under-ascertainment.
     
    You:

    (2) I’m not entirely sure how representative a sample you’d get from Facebook ads. Perhaps older/sicker people wouldn’t be as likely to respond. Are people in nursing homes on Facebook?
     
    Agreed. Here is what the paper had to say about that.

    This study had several limitations. First, our sampling strategy selected for members of Santa Clara County with access to Facebook and a car to attend drive-through testing sites. This resulted in an overrepresentation of white women between the ages of 19 and 64, and an under-representation of Hispanic and Asian populations, relative to our community. Those imbalances were partly addressed by weighting our sample population by zip code, race, and sex to match the county. We did not account for age imbalance in our sample, and could not ascertain representativeness of SARS-CoV-2 antibodies in homeless populations. Other biases, such as bias favoring individuals in good health capable of attending our testing sites, or bias favoring those with prior COVID-like illnesses seeking antibody confirmation are also possible. The overall effect of such biases is hard to ascertain.
     
    You:

    (3) The death rate most widely quoted had been 1%, which is what I’d generally assumed. But as of a few days ago, I’d been persuaded by the supposedly very large number of asymptomatic Iceland infections that the correct figure might be considerably lower, perhaps IFR=0.5%. So these SC results seem extreme, but not totally outlandish to me.
     
    Agreed. On April 4th I commented: "My own current estimate of the IFR is 1%, with a decent chance of 0.5%. There is significant uncertainty there though. It will be interesting to see if we ever do get a decent estimate."
    https://www.unz.com/isteve/l-a-mayor-public-should-wear-masks-but-not-n95s/#comment-3816684

    (4) Anyway, as someone already mentioned, consider NY. Deaths are currently running 1000/day and should very soon hit 20K total, probably a substantial underestimate based on that “excess death” analysis in the NYT. The state has a population of 20M. So unless you believe that *everyone* in NY was infected weeks ago, how does a IFR=0.1% make any sense? Lombardy is even more extreme.
     
    Good point. Worth repeating. Perhaps some of the low-IFR advocates could offer a response?

    The bottom line is that there seems a great deal of rather contradictory IFR evidence coming from all sorts of different countries, cities, and states, and it may take time and effort to clear up the confusion and figure out what’s correct.

    I’ve certainly never claimed to be a medical expert, and perhaps IFR=1.0% is indeed too high, but I’d argue that IFR=0.1% is far too low.
     
    Agreed (except I would probably omit the "far" from "far too low"). I think we will find there is no one true IFR. Whether or not we get any kind of decent handle on what contributes to the differences remains to be seen.

    It is worth noting that agreement on things like R0 and IFR is uncommon for flu seasons in general.

    In places like New York, where hospitals get stuffed with patients, other patients all get Chinavirus. This massively inflates the death rates as it becomes an infection of opportunity in those circumstances among the very sick and gets the blame for merely being there at the end/being the straw that breaks the camel’s back.

    Isn’t it kind of obvious that a highly infectious novel pathogen would have this (seeming) effect in crowded hospitals?

    Therefore the real chance of it actually killing you if you get it is still <0.1% as seen through antibody testing in places where the dying aren't especially exposed to it and their deaths especially attributed to it.

  159. @Nonsubhomine
    Everyone over a certain age plays such a game every winter. We (broadly construed) could reduce the number of flu deaths every single winter by going into lockdown between New Year’s Day and Easter, yet people generally accept the risks of flu infection as part of life. Ultimately people will have to do the same here as well; perhaps we’ll start getting annual Coronavirus vaccines of varying effectiveness. Nonetheless, people—usually older or otherwise medically compromised—will succumb to the disease on a regular basis. Maybe your prediction of widespread prophylaxis, e.g., masks and other physical barriers, will become part of the new normal, but the primary adjustment will be an appreciation of the “old normal,” i.e., that life is accompanied by some amount of unavoidable risk but that the opportunity to enjoy the basic good things in life outweighs that risk.

    Yes, Older people, for whom the possibility of death is one they’ve come to expect tend to respond to this coronavirus far more rationally than the completely safe pundit class of blogging troglodytes.

  160. @XYZ (no Mr.)
    You've never had a problem pushing wildly inflated death estimates before....why give me grief, Ron?

    As you have said, this ain't global warming, we'll see who is right soon enough.

    You’ve never had a problem pushing wildly inflated death estimates before….why give me grief, Ron?

    Well, I don’t know about that…

    Back three or four weeks ago when NY deaths were running around 50/day, I boldly predicted they might reach 500 or perhaps even 1000 by Easter, thereby drawing a huge number of attacks and insults:

    https://www.unz.com/isteve/so-uh-what-just-happened/#comment-3793485

    But sure enough, that’s exactly what happened, and much sooner than I had projected:

    https://www.unz.com/isteve/is-the-subway-why-new-york-city-is-so-hard-hit/#comment-3829467

    On the other hand, the big surprise to me has been that the NY health system didn’t totally crash, which would have quickly raised deaths to more like 4K-5K/day. That’s because serious hospitalizations have been running 85% lower than predicted:

    https://www.unz.com/isteve/is-the-subway-why-new-york-city-is-so-hard-hit/#comment-3829519

    I’m not sure why that’s the case. Maybe it’s the widespread early use of those special drugs that some Chinese doctors had recommended.

    Anyway, NY deaths are still rising, and are probably well north of 20K by now, while Michigan is really starting to take off. Don’t forget that the first NY death was only five weeks ago. Going from zero to 20K that quickly is what an exponential process looks like. Why are you so sure it can’t possibly happen elsewhere?

    And all of that is despite America adopting an absolutely unprecedented national health care lockdown. Just imagine what the numbers would be otherwise. And what might still happen if the lockdown is prematurely reversed.

    I’m certainly not claiming that all my predictions have been correct. But were you expecting to see something like 30K American deaths just in the first couple of weeks of April? And despite a huge national lockdown?

    • Replies: @Nonsubhomine
    Yes, as anyone familiar with the normal course of life in a country of 330 million people would know: https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/fastats/deaths.htm
    , @XYZ (no Mr.)
    You also stressed a 1% percent mortality rate -- it's right there, in some of your old posts. Besides this Santa Clara County study there was also the study in Gangelt, Germany that revealed the Wuhan virus is much more widespread than was commonly assumed. And my original comment -- math error and all -- was alluding to the fact that many exponential growth proponents are also pretty firm about the Wuhan virus being much deadlier to an individual that catches it than the flu, and certainly the American media constantly pushes stories to the public to believe this. Only 'skeptics' seemed to doubt the official 1% percent line. That is my takeaway from these studies, not that the virus doesn't spread fast to large numbers of people, and in doing so manage to kill many.
  161. @Anonymous

    Small business is extinct. Permanently. Period.
     
    No, small business is never extinct. Even in the Soviet Union where it was outright illegal, there were small businesses.

    But small business is inherently ephemeral. People start them, and wind them up. By nature, it's a rough way to make a living. Conservatives and the GOP constantly promote and aggrandize small business when in truth, a lot of people have no business being in business for themselves and do much better as employees in a paternalistic corporation with benefits.

    The fifties, sixties and seventies were the golden era of being a working class schlub because a 100 IQ guy could get a union job, or a nonunion job from a plant that paid more to keep the union out, with a defined benefit pension plan (because even most white people can not plan very well for their future-let alone blacks and mestizos) and healthcare. A lot of people sent their kids through college largely or wholly on their dime, bought little vacation houses and boats and even airplanes, and had comfortable retirements who in their own businesses would have made a major cock-up of it and died penniless.

    Even bigger businesses fail more often than they succeed. Apple started small and are now the biggest business on planet, but look at Commodore, look at Gateway 2000, look at all the high flying workstation companies of the late 80s. Look at all the dead retailers, the dead restaurant chains.

    The mill hunkies and Polacks in my family who worked in Chicago-Republic Steel, IH Wisconsin Steel, USS South Works-had good lives and are all dead now, but most of them died happier than their kids,most of them became engineers and accountants and such and had decent lives and families but they worked 70, 80 hour weeks, they had more stuff but their kids in turn went to shit as often as not due to a total lack of parental attention.

    If people need encouragement to start their own businesses, they shouldn't be starting their own businesses-it's a pretty good rule. The GOP of the Chamber of Commerce needs to die, worse than the Democrats do. We need to rig the system so if you want to make a lot of money and have the capacity for hard smart work, the drive and the ruthlessness you can, but you have to be a net asset and not a net liability to Joe Average. Offshoring manufacturing needs to be made unprofitable or marginally profitable. The FIRE sector needs trimming down to size.

    It won't happen, of course, because in the long run the Empire is doomed and there is going to be an enormous upheaval. And in the short run, Joe Average is too naive, too unorganized, too bovine to do what needs doing.

    A good comment. Thanks for posting.

  162. @Alexander Turok
    Voters in Michigan will keep collecting unemployment. I know you can't imagine any alternative to wagin'. Others can.

    Trump won in 2016 on a populist message. He decided to abandon it for The Dow. He will lose, and he'll deserve to lose.

    OK, newest Doomer. I don’t know if you’re from the Alt-Reich branch or the Antifa branch of Doomerism, but both branches keep pushing this “die for the dow” nonsense, and I am sick of it. Trump is not trying to save “the dow” by pushing back against the Corona Panic Shutdown–he’s trying to save people’s jobs, more of which are being lost every day because of the disgraceful Doomer hysteria of you and your kind. Most people need jobs because they have to, like, provide for their families and stuff, and to most ordinary people, being unable to do stuff like that is a lot scarier than the possibility of getting a virus with a fatality rate not much worse than that of the flu. Trying to make sure that people can keep their jobs is about as populist as it gets, and trying to force the populace to live like cringing, welfare-dependent bugmen–which you Doomers want–is about as anti-populist as it gets.

    • Agree: Hail
    • Replies: @Alexander Turok

    the possibility of getting a virus with a fatality rate not much worse than that of the flu
     
    That isn't true.

    Trying to make sure that people can keep their jobs is about as populist as it gets, and trying to force the populace to live like cringing, welfare-dependent bugmen–which you Doomers want–is about as anti-populist as it gets.
     
    I never thought of unemployment benefits as "anti-populist." Maybe you're just saying "populist" when you mean "libertarian." It's a standard liberal and libertarian talking point that any benefits one receives from the government are equivalent to welfare and that you're a "hypocrite" if you support one government program and reject another. I reject that notion completely. To quote my reply to the other commenter:

    You could point out “hey, the disabled person is asking for aid and the lazy person who doesn’t want to work is asking for aid, where’s the difference?” There’s no hypocrisy in wanting to help one rather than the other.
     
    I can't think of anything more anti-populist than the notion that workers should have to brave sickness and death in order to avoid being accused of collecting welfare by the Koch brothers.
    , @TomSchmidt
    Nicely put.
  163. @Anonymous
    Steve Sailer, you are way too optimistic. I believe that case fatality rates are actually pretty good proxies for total infection deaths rates because the quarantine measures were put in place shortly after the first people in America with COVID-19 got sick and admitted to the hospital. And yet, the number of deaths increased from 100 a day to 500 a day, than to 2,000 a day and not closre to 5,000 a day. Yestarday we had the worsst day, at over 4,300 deaths.

    If you assume that it takes 1 to 2 weeks for infected people to show the first signs of being ill, there simply wasn't enough time for huge numbers of the population to get infected given the time that elapsed from the first people that showed signs of being ill to the beggining of the quarantine.

    P:ostulating a 0.01% fatality rate is ridiculous. Do the math. Given 150,000 deaths so far Worldwide, you would need for 1.5 *billion* people to have been infected for that number of fatalities to be representative of the truth. There is no way that COVID-19 infected 1.5 billion people in the three months that elapsed from the beggining of the shutdown in Wuhan to the beggining of the global shutdown.

    Also the curve is not flattening. The number of casulaties increases every day, and it jumped from 100 a day a month ago to 4,000 day today.

    You are delusionally optimistic. There is a word for that: denial. When faced with tragedies and extremely gloomy prospects, human being resort to wishful thinking. Think a terminally ill patient who, having exhausted all medical options, resorts to alternative medicine despite lack of evidence. Or who converts to religion, in a last ditch attempt to avoid death by pretending they have an immortal part that can be saved.

    OK, Doomer. So, I guess we may as well all kill ourselves right now, because MATH!

  164. @O'Really
    The smoking gun on the Bay area study:
    https://twitter.com/mattmcnaughton/status/1251322235484168192

    The random internet bloke didn’t even end up testing positive…

  165. @Ron Unz
    Actually, I might as well add one very speculative issue, perhaps merely demonstrating my total ignorance of medicine...

    There seems a great deal of evidence that "viral load" may sometimes be an important factor in deaths or serious cases of Coronavirus. For example, lots of young, perfectly healthy doctors have died, something that should otherwise be exceptionally rare. And perhaps the viral load factor is continuous rather than based upon a threshold exposure level.

    I'm wondering whether the antibody test might be entirely independent of viral load. Perhaps 70-80% of the Santa Clara positives had received viral loads far too low to likely cause infection, but still sufficient to produce antibodies. If so, then they might have been "exposed" but not "infected" in the usual sense.

    Obviously, the crucial question would be whether such minimal "exposures" would provide immunity to a more substantial viral load exposure at a later date. If there's little or no immunity, then those "exposures" essentially amount to false positives.

    Like I said, I don't claim to know any medicine so this is just ignorant speculation...

    Perhaps 70-80% of the Santa Clara positives had received viral loads far too low to likely cause infection, but still sufficient to produce antibodies.

    You are supposing that antibodies are more frequent than infections. Well, at least in regards to this novel coronavirus, yesterday the World Health Organization produced a statement that goes in direct opposition to what you said. Maybe some people have watched it: the speaker was a red-haired plump guy with a distinctly Irish accent.

    As I have made a comment about this on Gilad Atzmon’s article ‘The Meaning of Corona’, I will just reproduce it almost word by word:

    In the news yesterday, the World Health Organization declared that very few of the recovered develop antibodies, and thus herd immunity is not going to happen. Also, the TV reporter — it wasn’t clear whether she was quoting the W.H.O. on that — said that those who develop antibodies are possibly becoming reinfected, so antibodies would be a poor protection.

    If true, those are very bad news. Forget herd immunity. And, possibly, forget vaccines as well.

    On the other hand, those declarations seem totally at odds with the following news:

    Why we’re still relying on a century-old strategy to treat COVID-19
    https://www.theverge.com/2020/4/13/21216513/plasma-blood-coronavirus-treament-drug-development-antibodies

    ‘Liquid gold’: the rush for plasma and the Covid-19 survivors who want to help
    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/apr/16/plasma-donations-coronavirus-patients-survivors

    Italy aims to turn suffering to advantage with experimental Covid-19 treatment
    https://edition.cnn.com/2020/04/15/europe/italy-coronavirus-antibody-plasma-treatment-intl/index.html

    Very strange.

    • Replies: @Brás Cubas

    In the news yesterday, the World Health Organization declared that very few of the recovered develop antibodies, and thus herd immunity is not going to happen.
     
    Sorry, they (Michael J. Ryan) didn’t say that. It was just the lousy translation from Brazilian TV. I checked, and he said that too few of the *population* have antibodies. It’s at 29′ of the video below:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pC4Ad4Q2-xc

    The rest of the comment may still have some interest.
  166. @Alexander Turok
    You believe in the just-world fallacy. You made the right choices, aren't fat, so a virus can't affect you.

    I'd be happy to let you have that belief so long as you agree to forsake use of the healthcare system and wear the badge.

    Oooh a named fallacy, and identified by mind reading no less!

    A person might believe that a virus won’t affect him because, in the end, it’s not a particularly dangerous virus. That is just cost/benefit analysis that normal people do on a regular basis. There is no “just world fallacy” involved in taking a commercial flight: most people realize that the benefits, on average, greatly outweigh the costs.

  167. @Ron Unz

    You’ve never had a problem pushing wildly inflated death estimates before….why give me grief, Ron?
     
    Well, I don't know about that...

    Back three or four weeks ago when NY deaths were running around 50/day, I boldly predicted they might reach 500 or perhaps even 1000 by Easter, thereby drawing a huge number of attacks and insults:

    https://www.unz.com/isteve/so-uh-what-just-happened/#comment-3793485

    But sure enough, that's exactly what happened, and much sooner than I had projected:

    https://www.unz.com/isteve/is-the-subway-why-new-york-city-is-so-hard-hit/#comment-3829467

    On the other hand, the big surprise to me has been that the NY health system didn't totally crash, which would have quickly raised deaths to more like 4K-5K/day. That's because serious hospitalizations have been running 85% lower than predicted:

    https://www.unz.com/isteve/is-the-subway-why-new-york-city-is-so-hard-hit/#comment-3829519

    I'm not sure why that's the case. Maybe it's the widespread early use of those special drugs that some Chinese doctors had recommended.

    Anyway, NY deaths are still rising, and are probably well north of 20K by now, while Michigan is really starting to take off. Don't forget that the first NY death was only five weeks ago. Going from zero to 20K that quickly is what an exponential process looks like. Why are you so sure it can't possibly happen elsewhere?

    And all of that is despite America adopting an absolutely unprecedented national health care lockdown. Just imagine what the numbers would be otherwise. And what might still happen if the lockdown is prematurely reversed.

    I'm certainly not claiming that all my predictions have been correct. But were you expecting to see something like 30K American deaths just in the first couple of weeks of April? And despite a huge national lockdown?

    Yes, as anyone familiar with the normal course of life in a country of 330 million people would know: https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/fastats/deaths.htm

  168. @Alexander Turok

    it won’t include an apology to the millions of people whose lives have been puréed thanks to our big-brained masters, the experts who advised them, and the various models that have proven so accurate
     
    Would a non-apology apology be accepted? How about "I'm sorry you're too dumb to grasp that the shutdowns were what prevented all the deaths we warned would happen without them?"

    I like the scare-italics around "models." What have scientific models ever done for the world? You can't think of anything, so the answer must be nothing.

    When I first watched Idiocracy, I thought it was funny, but had a hard time getting over how unrealistic the premise was. A world of morons would never appoint the smartest man alive to a government position thinking he will fix their problems. They'd just keep laughing at him.

    All the shutdowns did was prevent herd immunity and kill the economy. The further into this we get the more evidence is presented showing this flu to not be a 3% killer.

  169. @Brás Cubas

    Perhaps 70-80% of the Santa Clara positives had received viral loads far too low to likely cause infection, but still sufficient to produce antibodies.
     
    You are supposing that antibodies are more frequent than infections. Well, at least in regards to this novel coronavirus, yesterday the World Health Organization produced a statement that goes in direct opposition to what you said. Maybe some people have watched it: the speaker was a red-haired plump guy with a distinctly Irish accent.

    As I have made a comment about this on Gilad Atzmon's article 'The Meaning of Corona', I will just reproduce it almost word by word:

    In the news yesterday, the World Health Organization declared that very few of the recovered develop antibodies, and thus herd immunity is not going to happen. Also, the TV reporter — it wasn’t clear whether she was quoting the W.H.O. on that — said that those who develop antibodies are possibly becoming reinfected, so antibodies would be a poor protection.

    If true, those are very bad news. Forget herd immunity. And, possibly, forget vaccines as well.

    On the other hand, those declarations seem totally at odds with the following news:

    Why we’re still relying on a century-old strategy to treat COVID-19
    https://www.theverge.com/2020/4/13/21216513/plasma-blood-coronavirus-treament-drug-development-antibodies

    ‘Liquid gold’: the rush for plasma and the Covid-19 survivors who want to help
    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/apr/16/plasma-donations-coronavirus-patients-survivors

    Italy aims to turn suffering to advantage with experimental Covid-19 treatment
    https://edition.cnn.com/2020/04/15/europe/italy-coronavirus-antibody-plasma-treatment-intl/index.html

    Very strange.

    In the news yesterday, the World Health Organization declared that very few of the recovered develop antibodies, and thus herd immunity is not going to happen.

    Sorry, they (Michael J. Ryan) didn’t say that. It was just the lousy translation from Brazilian TV. I checked, and he said that too few of the *population* have antibodies. It’s at 29′ of the video below:

    The rest of the comment may still have some interest.

  170. @Anonymous (n)
    If the true mortality rate is on par with the flu, then how does one explain the deluge of deaths and hospitalizations experienced in epicenters like Northern Italy and NYC? I personally know physicians working in NYC and they are adamant what they are experiencing is an absolute nightmare that bears no comparison to the flu whatsoever.

    That’s the mystery here. Is this result explained by different strains of the virus spreading in different places? Different genetics or behavioral factors making the disease so much nastier in NYC and Northern Italy than in California? False positives among the tests giving us a much-inflated estimate of the number of cases so far? Different ways of catching it (inhaling one droplet as I pass you jogging vs stewing in contagion in a New York subway car for 15 minutes?)

  171. @Anonymous

    A medical practice is no different from any other business. No revenue, no customers, equals no paychecks and no bills paid.
     
    What bills need to be paid if they aren’t operating?

    Rent, interest on debt, salaries and benefits for any permanent employees, depreciation on expensive equipment, cost to replace perishable supplies that went bad during the shutdown, etc. A lot of small businesses will never reopen if they’re closed down with no revenue for a few months, and many others will just barely manage it.

  172. @Je Suis Omar Mateen
    "Trump is too dumb to see that. He thinks those voters in Michigan are gonna lynch him if the Dow falls."

    It is obvious to everyone that Democratic governors colluded to interfere with the results of the 2020 election after it was clear that a child-sniffing pederast in the throes of stage-three Alzheimer's is the Democratic nominee.

    The data from Europe prove kungflu is a mild virus. The debate is over.

    #CoronaHoax

    You mean the data from Northern Italy?

    • Replies: @Mr. Anon

    You mean the data from Northern Italy?
     
    And what do you think that data shows?
    , @Fredrik
    Yeah, that data must be explained in order to understand the low ifr of this study.

    Lombardy which is the region in Italy with the most cases is also the most advanced region in the country so it's not the s**thole the US Italian ancestors emigrated from.
  173. @Anonymous

    So, we appear to have Flattened the Curve.

    Now what?
     
    Now that we’ve flattened the curve, the next step is to repatriate illegal aliens and put a stop to mass immigration.

    Steve has become weirdly silent about immigration.

    Someone needs to do all the work while Americans are Staying Home and Saving Lives

  174. @Steve Sailer
    Old people in nursing homes need not old people to take care of them. They are the hardest to isolate from the not old.

    But they can restrict visitors, especially children. The residents don’t have to go out. And the staff can not come in to work when they’re sick and they can wear PPE. This may not happen at a lot of nursing homes, but there’s no reason it can’t or shouldn’t happen. It would be easier to keep the very old and infirm in old folks homes away from the rest of us by isolating them than by isolating the entire rest of the World.

  175. @NOTA
    You mean the data from Northern Italy?

    You mean the data from Northern Italy?

    And what do you think that data shows?

  176. @Ron Unz
    Actually, I might as well add one very speculative issue, perhaps merely demonstrating my total ignorance of medicine...

    There seems a great deal of evidence that "viral load" may sometimes be an important factor in deaths or serious cases of Coronavirus. For example, lots of young, perfectly healthy doctors have died, something that should otherwise be exceptionally rare. And perhaps the viral load factor is continuous rather than based upon a threshold exposure level.

    I'm wondering whether the antibody test might be entirely independent of viral load. Perhaps 70-80% of the Santa Clara positives had received viral loads far too low to likely cause infection, but still sufficient to produce antibodies. If so, then they might have been "exposed" but not "infected" in the usual sense.

    Obviously, the crucial question would be whether such minimal "exposures" would provide immunity to a more substantial viral load exposure at a later date. If there's little or no immunity, then those "exposures" essentially amount to false positives.

    Like I said, I don't claim to know any medicine so this is just ignorant speculation...

    There seems a great deal of evidence that “viral load” may sometimes be an important factor in deaths or serious cases of Coronavirus. For example, lots of young, perfectly healthy doctors have died, something that should otherwise be exceptionally rare. And perhaps the viral load factor is continuous rather than based upon a threshold exposure level.

    It would make sense that viral load would be important. However, are you sure that “lots of young, perfectly healthy doctors have died.”? Were they all perfectly healthy? Were they all young? A few weeks ago, the Italian equivalent to the AMA put out a list of about a hundred doctors who died of COVID-19 – a list with dates of birth and death – and implied that they died while practicing medicine during the epidemic. When it was pointed out to them that a lot of those doctors were in there in their 80s and 90s and were probably just retirees who had succumbed as might any other retiree, that Italian medical organization…………….removed all the birth dates from the website.

    • Replies: @Ron Unz

    However, are you sure that “lots of young, perfectly healthy doctors have died.”?
     
    Well, I haven't tried to produce a list. But that famous early doctor in China died in his 30s, and there was a big NYT Magazine piece about the first case in NJ, a young perfectly healthy physicians assistant in his 30s who came very close to dying. I'm sure I've read other stories here and there as well.
  177. Anonymous[329] • Disclaimer says:
    @Daniel Williams

    I like the scare-italics around “models.”
     
    Bummed you didn’t get your apocalypse, huh? Finally get even with all those bullies?

    The best-case scenarios predicted by the models—the ones you still appear to think were accurate somehow—was 100K dead by now.

    Did that happen or not?

    Ever think that most of the so-called experts might be as mediocre as their jobs are you are at yours, or I am at mine?

    “Bummed you didn’t get your apocalypse, huh? Finally get even with all those bullies?”

    There’s a fitting symmetry between SJWs and the Infowars crowd which is infesting and destroying the HBDSphere. SJWs appeal to the rage of the thots that so much money is flowing into Silicon Valley. After all, they grew up with a belief that they are naturally superior to those “creepy nerds,” so it’s a huge social injustice that many of them have more money than they do. The Infowars crowd appeals to similar resentments. Remember the sixteen-year-old who thought he was the King of Coolness because he stole his uncle’s beer and stumbled around the suburb drunk? Well, twenty years later, he rages that the “nerds” he once looked down on have more money than him. But while the SJWs make at least semi-coherent demands, for affirmative action jobs and the like, the Infowars man just launches into these incoherent rants. He rants against science, against rationality, sometimes against secularism.(Though he won’t listen to clerics either, as he sees them as just another variety of nerd.)

    This isn’t to say that you can’t criticize the “bugmen.” I live in Silicon Valley, I see plenty of weak, cuckolded male feminists here. But the fat middle American who waves the flag, believes in corporate tax cuts, and cheers the neocon wars is really no better.

    • Replies: @Anon
    Know your place, HBD nerd. How does it feel to know that those fat middle Americans are morally superior to you in every way? Oh well, at least you have your HBD blogs and your $10,000 a month apartment.

    HBD is over and it got replaced by right-wing populism in 2016 so deal with it.
  178. There is a problem with testing in a population with low prevalence. If you have a test with a 10% false positive rate, and a true prevalence of 1 in 1000, if you test 10,000 people, you end up with 1,000 false positives and 9 true positives (assuming 10% false negative rate), and 1 missed positive.

    If its 1% either way, with a testing population of 10,000, you have 100 false positives and 9 true positives.

    In the first case, you overstate the prevalence by 100%, in the second 10%. If you then simply use your prevalence rate to compute fatality, you will massively understate your fatality rate. I can’t imagine any of these tests don’t have at least a 1% false positive rate.

  179. @Alexander Turok

    it won’t include an apology to the millions of people whose lives have been puréed thanks to our big-brained masters, the experts who advised them, and the various models that have proven so accurate
     
    Would a non-apology apology be accepted? How about "I'm sorry you're too dumb to grasp that the shutdowns were what prevented all the deaths we warned would happen without them?"

    I like the scare-italics around "models." What have scientific models ever done for the world? You can't think of anything, so the answer must be nothing.

    When I first watched Idiocracy, I thought it was funny, but had a hard time getting over how unrealistic the premise was. A world of morons would never appoint the smartest man alive to a government position thinking he will fix their problems. They'd just keep laughing at him.

    “I’m sorry you’re too dumb to grasp

    Idiocracy, I thought it was funny, but had a hard time getting over how unrealistic the premise was. A world of morons

    Both you and Unz spend a remarkable amount of time calling people names rather than countering arguments.

    • Replies: @Alexander Turok
    I try to always counter the arguments, as I did when I said: "the shutdowns were what prevented all the deaths we warned would happen without them." Sometimes I also call people names. There are some instances where there are no arguments present to counter, in which name-calling is all I have.
  180. @Alexander Turok
    The funny thing is that, in normal circumstances, the electorate "rallies around the flag" when their nation is in crisis. The incumbent gets a bump. He doesn't even need to handle it well, just look like he's taking it seriously. But Trump is too dumb to see that. He thinks those voters in Michigan are gonna lynch him if the Dow falls.

    And he will lose.

    And he will lose.

    Or, Trump has recognized that arrogant Democrat governors are going to dig in and push the lockdowns too far – cratering local economies. Those Michigan unemployment benefits will be history by election day. What those Michigan voters may remember is how Trump was “fighting” for them on Twitter when he demanded their governor re-open the economy – a demand the Michigan governor is likely to resist for reasons.

  181. @Polynikes
    Or NYC is cooking the books a bit. A hate to get into that because it takes us away from hard numbers, but the financial, and political, incentive is there. They just added 3700 back dated deaths.

    Or maybe they're not. And NYC is just hit really hard for a multitude of reasons. I'm sure that tucked within the flu's normal 0.1% rate is set of varying numbers all over the country. On average Pennsylvania is probably hit harder with the flu than New Mexico. And at the end of the day it averages out to 0.1%.

    So that means NYC is going through a rough time. Most of the country isn't. At the end of the day, if the numbers are reliable, the average for the whole country will come out. It won't truly reflect the acute hardship of NYC nor the relative ease Florida is having.

    Or NYC is cooking the books a bit.

    Jeffery Epstein died of CV.

    • LOL: LondonBob
  182. Anonymous[270] • Disclaimer says:

    This is embarrassingly bad paper and I hope it gets rejected:

    1. The rate at which they detected “positives”, 1.5%, is entirely contained in the known uncertainty about false-positive rate (0.5-2%) for the kind of primitive test they employ.

    2. Their IFR estimates necessarily imply that somewhere between 50 to 100% people have already been infected. This flies in the face of the numerous good estimates of seroprevalence. IOW, the numbers are utterly nonsensical.

    This is one clear example how ideological biases make you brain dead.

  183. @Alexander Turok
    Voters in Michigan will keep collecting unemployment. I know you can't imagine any alternative to wagin'. Others can.

    Trump won in 2016 on a populist message. He decided to abandon it for The Dow. He will lose, and he'll deserve to lose.

    “Voters in Michigan will keep collecting unemployment”

    For 20 weeks: https://eligibility.com/unemployment/michigan-mi-unemployment-benefits

    My my count, that means Michiganers will be running out of benefits just in time for the election. Who do you think they are likely to blame for their predicament? Trump?

    • Replies: @Alexander Turok
    That's why the benefits will be extended. I repeat myself when I say that you can’t imagine any alternative to wagin’. Others can.
  184. Anon[194] • Disclaimer says:
    @utu

    There is significant uncertainty there though. It will be interesting to see if we ever do get a decent estimate.
     
    Probably not. IFR is strongly age dependent. Its value may change by orders of magnitude between age=20 and age=80. Also the infection rate will be age dependent. The old folks are less mobile and can have lower infection rate as they are the ones who take protective measures more seriously and otoh when in group home living like a nursing home they are more vulnerable and at the mercy of careless staff.

    Therefore, imo, IFR estimates can vary widely from place to place and from study to study depending on the age demographics and how the age correction if at all are calculated. I would not be surprised that the same data may yield IFR estimates differing by an order of magnitude. I would go even further: the IFR as a single number is pretty meaningless because the disease outcomes in population with vastly different age demographic will be very different. Perhaps CDC and WHO have a standard population of age demographics against which the IFR is calculated.

    When the authors of the Stanford paper say "We did not account for age imbalance in our sample" they should also state that while their work is meaningful to establish the infection rate in the population it cannot yield good a estimate do the death rate.

    Fatalities may be related to a bad diagnosis. Italians have discovered (through autopsies) covid19 is not a respiratory insufficiency problem, but a disseminated micro thrombosis. There is hope and evidence the new diagnosis allows for home treatment.
    https://www.maurizioblondet.it/eparina-funziona-scoperta-del-genio-italico-e-il-suo-contrario/

    The Anglosphere media is very quite about this, only hinting that heroic New York doctors question use of ventilators (see Daily Mail)

    In Spain, Italy and Mexico, doctors are already treating with anti-inflammatories, anti-coagulants and antibiotics (if required). An internist suggested, for example: a throat medicine Bisolvon, Ivermectin or Hidroxicloroquina, Tylex 750 (ibuprofen still controversial), and two subcutaneous inyections a day of Clexane 60mg S.C. (heparin).

    • Thanks: utu
    • Replies: @Anon
    Blacks get blood clots at a higher rate than whites. Here's a study:

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26888256
    , @Anon
    Here's a paper saying that people with type A blood are more prone to getting blood clots than those with type O. There was a paper published a while back saying that people with type A blood were more prone to getting Covid-19 and dying from it if they had it.

    https://www.medicinenet.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=227586

    "Compared to people with type O blood, individuals in the type A and B groups were 51% more likely to develop deep vein thrombosis and 47% more likely to develop a pulmonary embolism."
    , @Anon
    There is some experience with great results in two days with ivermectin (1 tablet 6 mg today, one in seven days) if taken early on. Of course doctors question whether it was the patient’s response or the pill. But since it is a well-known substance, harmless on humans , it seems a good way to go.
  185. @William Badwhite

    “I’m sorry you’re too dumb to grasp
     

    Idiocracy, I thought it was funny, but had a hard time getting over how unrealistic the premise was. A world of morons
     
    Both you and Unz spend a remarkable amount of time calling people names rather than countering arguments.

    I try to always counter the arguments, as I did when I said: “the shutdowns were what prevented all the deaths we warned would happen without them.” Sometimes I also call people names. There are some instances where there are no arguments present to counter, in which name-calling is all I have.

    • LOL: YetAnotherAnon
    • Replies: @William Badwhite
    Thank you for your reply

    I try to always counter the arguments, as I did when I said: “the shutdowns were what prevented all the deaths we warned would happen without them.”
     
    Writing "the shutdowns were what prevented all the deaths" is assertion more than argument. That said, I'm sympathetic to being unable to make an argument about this because:

    It is difficult if not impossible to make really sound arguments about this because there are far too many unknowns. There still isn't widespread testing so nobody really knows how many people have been exposed (exposed as distinct from symptomatic) other than in some fairly small subsets (that cruise ship, the US carrier, a few towns here and there). And even those subsets have factors that distinguish them from other towns so one can't draw a firm conclusion. For example: the aircraft carrier is populated by relatively young people - the captain himself was only 50 - who are for the most part in fairly decent physical shape so we would think this would make them less susceptible to illness and death. However there are also approximately 5,000 people crammed onto it and they live in tight confines, walk through very narrow passageways, eat in close proximity to others so this would theoretically increase their viral load thus making them more susceptible. We can't really export that data and apply it to Whereversville, USA.

    It also seems as if there are countless variables for which the effect isn't understood: age, race, various other physical maladies, genetics, air quality in the vicinity, viral load (we know viral load is a factor but we don't know how much of a factor), prior vaccinations (or lack thereof) for various other viruses, weather (and its own sub factors such as temperature, humidity). The fact we are whatever months into this and we're still reading things like "why is Silicon Valley different from NY" is because nobody really knows.

    I am of the opinion the widespread lockdowns are mostly overreactions by innumerate politicians and ass-covering bureaucrats like Dr. "heterosexuals are as likely to get AIDS as homosexuals" Fauci, but I freely admit I don't really know that.

    Some arguments are better than others of course. But even the best arguments are based on a fairly high degree of speculation.

    Sometimes I also call people names. There are some instances where there are no arguments present to counter, in which name-calling is all I have.
     

    I'm guilty of this at times as well, though mostly I direct it at a few deserving targets like Corvirus. In general though name-calling makes one look emotional and easily baited. Maybe its better to just ignore them.

    Stay safe.

  186. @Ron Unz

    You’ve never had a problem pushing wildly inflated death estimates before….why give me grief, Ron?
     
    Well, I don't know about that...

    Back three or four weeks ago when NY deaths were running around 50/day, I boldly predicted they might reach 500 or perhaps even 1000 by Easter, thereby drawing a huge number of attacks and insults:

    https://www.unz.com/isteve/so-uh-what-just-happened/#comment-3793485

    But sure enough, that's exactly what happened, and much sooner than I had projected:

    https://www.unz.com/isteve/is-the-subway-why-new-york-city-is-so-hard-hit/#comment-3829467

    On the other hand, the big surprise to me has been that the NY health system didn't totally crash, which would have quickly raised deaths to more like 4K-5K/day. That's because serious hospitalizations have been running 85% lower than predicted:

    https://www.unz.com/isteve/is-the-subway-why-new-york-city-is-so-hard-hit/#comment-3829519

    I'm not sure why that's the case. Maybe it's the widespread early use of those special drugs that some Chinese doctors had recommended.

    Anyway, NY deaths are still rising, and are probably well north of 20K by now, while Michigan is really starting to take off. Don't forget that the first NY death was only five weeks ago. Going from zero to 20K that quickly is what an exponential process looks like. Why are you so sure it can't possibly happen elsewhere?

    And all of that is despite America adopting an absolutely unprecedented national health care lockdown. Just imagine what the numbers would be otherwise. And what might still happen if the lockdown is prematurely reversed.

    I'm certainly not claiming that all my predictions have been correct. But were you expecting to see something like 30K American deaths just in the first couple of weeks of April? And despite a huge national lockdown?

    You also stressed a 1% percent mortality rate — it’s right there, in some of your old posts. Besides this Santa Clara County study there was also the study in Gangelt, Germany that revealed the Wuhan virus is much more widespread than was commonly assumed. And my original comment — math error and all — was alluding to the fact that many exponential growth proponents are also pretty firm about the Wuhan virus being much deadlier to an individual that catches it than the flu, and certainly the American media constantly pushes stories to the public to believe this. Only ‘skeptics’ seemed to doubt the official 1% percent line. That is my takeaway from these studies, not that the virus doesn’t spread fast to large numbers of people, and in doing so manage to kill many.

    • Replies: @Ron Unz

    this Santa Clara County study
     
    Actually, I think this Santa Clara County study has been totally demolished by others in the comments here, who actually read the preprint, and also on a few Twitter threads:

    https://www.unz.com/isteve/infection-rate-in-silicon-valley-was-under-5-in-early-april/#comment-3845575

    It's just garbage and no one should now take it seriously.

    You also stressed a 1% percent mortality rate — it’s right there, in some of your old posts.
     
    Absolutely. And the data from South Korea, which did very thorough testing, had even pointed to a 2% fatality rate:

    https://www.unz.com/akarlin/corona-cfr-in-korea/

    However, I've been persuaded that asymptomatic cases are far more common than was previously believed, so on balance 1% is probably high. But there are so many conflicting datapoints, it's very difficult to form a solid opinion right now.
  187. @NOTA
    You mean the data from Northern Italy?

    Yeah, that data must be explained in order to understand the low ifr of this study.

    Lombardy which is the region in Italy with the most cases is also the most advanced region in the country so it’s not the s**thole the US Italian ancestors emigrated from.

  188. @Alexander Turok
    What do you think of my idea to selectively end the shutdown? People can stop isolating themselves so long as they agree to two conditions:

    1. Agree that if they do get sick with corona or some disease that looks like it could be corona, they will renounce their right to all medical care more serious than CVS Health Day & Night Cold + Flu Plus Softgels, whether they have insurance or not, whether they have the ability to pay or not, and that if they try to renege on this they will be criminally prosecuted.

    2. Agree to wear a special symbol on their clothing so that others can distinguish them from responsible people who go out once a month to buy needed supplies or work jobs which must be done, and agree that others have an absolute right to discriminate against them, such as by refusing to hire them, refusing to allow them to use their stores, segregating them within, etc., for the remainder of the pandemic. I suggest the symbol be a pinhead.

    Sure thing! If those who continue to socially distance are forced to sign an agreement to forgo any COVID-related benefits, and any unemployment compensation beyond that which existed January 1, 2020. Hey, if you’re not willing to risk generating the revenue that funds these wondrous schemes, why should you benefit from them?

    • Agree: Mehen
    • Replies: @Alexander Turok

    Hey, if you’re not willing to risk generating the revenue that funds these wondrous schemes, why should you benefit from them?
     
    Same reason a Japanese can collect unemployment if he was working next to Fukushima Daiichi and wasn't willing to take the risk to keep generating revenue.

    We tend to want to direct help to people who are in need for no fault of their own. You could point out "hey, the disabled person is asking for aid and the lazy person who doesn't want to work is asking for aid, where's the difference?" There's no hypocrisy in wanting to help one rather than the other. Similarly, I want to help victims of radiation sickness who are blameless and not those who purposely ventured into the irradiated zone. I want to help corona victims who are blameless and not those who acted recklessly and got infected.
  189. Covid Twitter has gone to work on that paper, now it’s toast. Suggesting Twitter is a toaster.

    • Replies: @Hail
    Alan Cole wrote:

    I have zero confidence in the Santa Clara serology study, and the recent work of Eran Bendavid generally.
     
    Translation:

    "Blasphemy!"
  190. @Whiskey
    It would be better than this. More than half of LA County adults are unemployed. National unemployment is 25% and over 17 million are unemployed.

    Small business is extinct. Permanently. Period.

    And President Stacey Abrams has her GET YT plan ready to go. Since Biden is a slam dunk and she is his running mate.

    Camps for Whitey will be opening soon. Gavin Newsome has plans. Jello Biafra tried to warn you.

    Small business is extinct. Permanently. Period.

    And it’s all part of the Democrat plot, right? That’s what Gavin Newsom and Barbara Boxer want. It’s not like they ever eat in expensive restaurants, no, they rely entirely on a diet of aborted fetuses.

    I think that, deep down, people who say things like this know their beliefs to be spurious. They do it to signal their loyalty to the tribe: that he’s willing to debase himself(anonymously on the internet, of course) by saying these dumb things, that they’re “all-in,” unlike others who may be sitting on the fences. They know, too, that this kind of radical LARPing alienates people and ends up harming the causes they believe in. They don’t really care.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
    I wouldn't rule out that Boxer-fetuses theory. BTW, are you any relation to the dinosaur hunter?
  191. @Intelligent Dasein

    Anyway, this valuable new data suggest that Case Fatality Rates aren’t all that high (absent hospitals being overwhelmed), but Herd Immunity is still a long way off.
     
    This whole concept of herd immunity needs some serious criticism. As I have been saying for awhile now, the herd is already immune with or without antibodies. If it were not so, the herd would already be sick. We are exposed to viruses all the time, and most of them are cleared from the system without going through the expedient of a full blown immunological response that results in the production of antibodies. The various grades of infection are:

    0. Never infected.
    1. Infected, aymptomatic, no antibodies.
    2. Infected, asymptomatic, antibodies
    3. Infected, symptomatic, antibodies.

    Everybody forgets about number one and goes directly from zero to two and three, and this frames the whole herd immunity debate. There is an extra step in there that gets routinely ignored.

    We have pretty much all been exposed to this already. Every country is following a similar curve regardless of when, whether, and what social distancing measures were adopted. The increasing case numbers are entirely an artifact of the greater number of tests administered. The death counts are being pulled out of statistical noise. Gross excess deaths are not materializing.

    Covid-19 is a real virus, but this pandemic is not a real pandemic. It is being manufactured out of questionable statistics, mass media propaganda, and the iatrogenic effects of the lockdowns themselves. It is time to close the book on this hysteria.

    The death counts are being pulled out of statistical noise. Gross excess deaths are not materializing.

    Could you give the cite for this? I need it for an argument I’m having.

    • Replies: @Intelligent Dasein
    Check out this post by Hail. He has graphs showing deaths consistent with prior year flu spikes. His comment feed in general contains lots of links to useful information.

    https://www.unz.com/anepigone/conflusion/#comment-3837493
    , @YetAnotherAnon
    "Gross excess deaths are not materializing."

    They are certainly materialising in Europe, although not everywhere.

    http://www.euromomo.eu/

    Pooled mortality estimates from the EuroMOMO network continue to show a marked increase in excess all-cause mortality overall for the participating European countries, coinciding with the current COVID-19 global pandemic. This overall excess mortality is, however, driven by a very substantial excess mortality in some countries, primarily seen in the age group of 65 years and above, but also in the age group of 15-64 years.
    Data from 24 participating countries or regions were included in this week’s pooled analysis of all-cause mortality.
     
    http://www.euromomo.eu/slices/Maps-2020/MAP-2020-14.png

    Also in NY. Deaths in Sept 2001 were 7,010, deaths March 5-Apr 4 were 9,780.

    https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/04/10/upshot/coronavirus-deaths-new-york-city.html
  192. Anonymous[107] • Disclaimer says:

    Infection Fertility Rate?

  193. @UK
    That's the conclusion you draw?

    The area has a current CFR of 3% that needs to be divided more than 50 fold and you don't think it worth mentioning?

    The more data that comes out the more likely it seems for a not weird population in not weird circumstances to experience an IFR of considerably less than 0.1%

    And of those 0.1% the average age seems to be about 80 years old.

    It is a real virus that causes a real illness and it is a bad thing, but a sense of proportion would do people a huge amount of good. It would also stop our countries throwing the baby out with the bathwater by lockdown.

    Nevermind that lockdowns themselves are kind of stupid, given that the more lockdowned you are the less the benefit and the worse the cost, therefore total lockdown is completely idiotic. Like buying the world's most expensive speaker system only to play just low quality MP3 files through it.

    Yep… all the real evidence says lockdown should never have happened but since it ALREADY happened it should NOW be lifted completely, everywhere, and immediately. Corona was never a real threat but our terrible decision making IS.

    An awful lot of people seem to have climbed way up in a tree with their rhetoric on this one (media, international organizations, healthcare experts, politicians generally, even trump, and yes Sailer too) and are all kind of politely edging their way back down.

    It’s fine if they want to play this game and even act like the initial reaction made sense. But it’s not fine when the face saving is dragging this thing out potentially months more at a cost of trillions of dollars, millions of jobs, hundreds of thousands of businesses, and yes thousands of lives through despair and disruption.

    News organizations are barely even *carrying* the new antibody studies and if they do they are portraying it as a SCARY BAD result (OH NO 85x as many people have this DEADLY VIRUS!). That’s how dishonest we are still being on this; your average normie still thinks their healthy third grader could keel over at any second.

    If they don’t come clean and admit the gigantic mistake they’ve made… regular people may be scared enough to stay home – even when the dozens of people on the task force decided we’ve jumped through sufficient hoops. This demand and productivity destruction could be catastrophic just by itself.

    • Agree: Mehen
    • Replies: @UK
    What's really strange is that a consensus has actually emerged among professionals in this area and is very similar to your post, but politics has prevented it from emerging as a proper talking point. Politicians are too scared to repeat it as the volume of public and media hysteria is petrifying.

    Sweden followed the expert advice all of the way through because constitutionally the experts were in charge and Swedish people are conformist enough to not buck that wisdom.

    Ironically, the people who shout at others to stay home while screaming "science is science" are most certainly not on the side of the science. They had some backing two months ago because there were enough unknowns for a wide range of views to fit (just) within consensus, but not anymore.

    Meanwhile the lunatic "it is a hoax and also a terrible virus that the Jews released" lot have happened to find themselves at least in the same direction as the experts, if for difference reasons and far off to the extreme.

    Ron Unz is just following his usual pattern of being absolutely wrong about everything, except on totally banal statements, like "China is a rising power", to which everyone (except perhaps rhetorically and hyperbolically) agrees and has agreed for many decades. Of course he takes his proven record of repeating banal talking points in an astonished tone, as proof of his actual crackpot theories and general genius. Or maybe he is just a troll amusedly hoovering up all dissident traffic onto one website. The website is phenomenal so he is certainly some kind of savant regardless.

    Meanwhile China's reaction was just some mix of coverup, overreaction to their initial failure and a natural result of their overbearing authoritarian government. It amazes the ignorant only. Just as the ignorant are amazed by China still massively lagging Hong Kong despite Hong Kong having gotten rich (with China still being poor on average) with a disinterested and exhausted British government in charge.

    Sweden will be absolutely vindicated in a year. Almost everyone else will look pretty foolish. Or not, because the Emperor rarely admits to wearing no clothes.
  194. Anonymous[107] • Disclaimer says:
    @Alexander Turok

    Small business is extinct. Permanently. Period.
     
    And it's all part of the Democrat plot, right? That's what Gavin Newsom and Barbara Boxer want. It's not like they ever eat in expensive restaurants, no, they rely entirely on a diet of aborted fetuses.

    I think that, deep down, people who say things like this know their beliefs to be spurious. They do it to signal their loyalty to the tribe: that he's willing to debase himself(anonymously on the internet, of course) by saying these dumb things, that they're "all-in," unlike others who may be sitting on the fences. They know, too, that this kind of radical LARPing alienates people and ends up harming the causes they believe in. They don't really care.

    I wouldn’t rule out that Boxer-fetuses theory. BTW, are you any relation to the dinosaur hunter?

  195. @Daniel Williams

    Certain ‘marginalized’ populations disproportionately affected. Early victims are high profile. Tom Hanks, Prince Charles, NBA stars.
     
    That’s crazy talk! Whoever heard of big stars like Cary Grant or Greta Garbo working behind the scenes to advance some kind of agenda?

    That’s very subtle. You need to put a /sarc/ in there.

  196. @Dtbb
    What is a group of lemmings called?

    A panic?

  197. @Pincher Martin

    Not according to the Washington Post in this article published yesterday (4/16):
     
    I read something different last week.

    But let's assume the WP is right. The trajectory for this virus, which has been in country for just a couple of months, is still in line to hit the #1 spot - even with 85 percent of the country under severe social distancing restrictions.

    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/EVzR2YlWoAA08ji.jpg


    And it’s pretty obvious now that Coronavirus is not going to produce an annual number of deaths comparable to those caused by heart disease.
     
    Again, that is only true because of the social distancing restrictions that have been put in place by most states. Even with those restrictions, 10,000 Americans have still died over the past five days. If that daily rate continues for a year (it won't - but let's pretend we did nothing about the spread of the virus), the number of dead would be over 700,000 - or slightly higher than the estimated 600,000+ Americans who die every year because of cancer and heart disease.

    “Again, that is only true because of the social distancing restrictions that have been put in place by most states.”

    I guess the drop in Sweden is also due to the social distancing measures they put in place?
    https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/sweden/
    http://www.euromomo.eu/

    Nasty spike, with deaths 8stDev above the normal death rate (not as bad as locked-down UK, of course).

    • Replies: @Pincher Martin
    Sweden isn't testing that much, Tom. So how would the Swedes know if their infection rate was slowing down? Or what their infection rate was compared to other European countries?

    Plus, Sweden is one of the least densely populated countries in Europe, while the UK - and even more so England - is one of the most densely populated countries in Europe. Such things matter when talking about the spread of the virus.

  198. @Pincher Martin

    There’s little evidence for that, at least in terms of lockdowns. Steve posted the Chinese study that indicates keeping people at home may be increasing the spread.
     
    Why look at the Chinese study when we have fifty different experiments happening in the states?

    We can take a look at the daily percentage growth in the infection rates in various states since they've put restrictions in place. I've looked at several, and they suggest the restrictions are working in slowing the spread. The rates usually go from 25 all the way up to 100 percent growth per day to less than 5 percent.

    I don't think it makes any sense to believe that staying home isolated from others makes it easier to spread an infectious disease among your family members. What families don't typically live in close proximity? Chinese businessmen with mistresses holed up in an apartment on the other side of town, maybe?

    “We can take a look at the daily percentage growth in the infection rates in various states since they’ve put restrictions in place.”
    Those are bullshit numbers based on biased data. At least the Santa Clara numbers do something to avoid bias. Literally NO state is tracking “growth in the infection rates.” The best state-wide data is death rates, and those are going to have to be adjusted for all the deaths miscoded for and against the virus (and there’s real incentive now to code everything FOR the virus, so overall deaths may be the only reliable number)

    ” I’ve looked at several, and they suggest the restrictions are working in slowing the spread.”
    I would look askance on anyone who thought that the lockdown wouldn’t slow the spread. I assume it has, even though it is a disastrous policy.

    Interestingly, Andrew Cuomo is gradually coming around to the iSteve idea from February: mask everybody. His literal words a few days ago were “if you cannot practice social distancing, wear a mask.” He is VERY close to realizing what the Taiwanese and Koreans already know: masking is social distancing, without all the gestapo questioning people out and about, and without the Pavel Morozovs ratting out their fellow citizens to the authorities for violating rules. It’s also easy to enforce.

    • Replies: @Pincher Martin

    Those are bullshit numbers based on biased data. At least the Santa Clara numbers do something to avoid bias.
     
    They're not biased. If anything, the confirmed infection rate would be biased downward early because of the limited number of test kits. You can't confirm what you can't test.

    As more test kits become available, you are able to keep up with demand, as more people who both want and need a test are able to get one.

    If anything, the new Santa Clara study suggests the infection rate HASN'T gone down in the area, in which case please explain why has the confirmed infection case load has leveled off?

    Interestingly, Andrew Cuomo is gradually coming around to the iSteve idea from February: mask everybody. His literal words a few days ago were “if you cannot practice social distancing, wear a mask.” He is VERY close to realizing what the Taiwanese and Koreans already know: masking is social distancing,
     
    Masks are now mandatory in most Bay Area counties. Santa Clara County is still an exception, but I bet not for long.

    But since, as you admit, masks are just another form of social distancing, what's your point of pooh-poohing the effectiveness of social distancing measures at the same time you laud wearing masks? I was responding to someone who claimed that lockdowns don't work at all and in fact might increase the spread of the virus among families. That seems insane to me, but that's what he said.
  199. @Anonymous

    Small business is extinct. Permanently. Period.
     
    No, small business is never extinct. Even in the Soviet Union where it was outright illegal, there were small businesses.

    But small business is inherently ephemeral. People start them, and wind them up. By nature, it's a rough way to make a living. Conservatives and the GOP constantly promote and aggrandize small business when in truth, a lot of people have no business being in business for themselves and do much better as employees in a paternalistic corporation with benefits.

    The fifties, sixties and seventies were the golden era of being a working class schlub because a 100 IQ guy could get a union job, or a nonunion job from a plant that paid more to keep the union out, with a defined benefit pension plan (because even most white people can not plan very well for their future-let alone blacks and mestizos) and healthcare. A lot of people sent their kids through college largely or wholly on their dime, bought little vacation houses and boats and even airplanes, and had comfortable retirements who in their own businesses would have made a major cock-up of it and died penniless.

    Even bigger businesses fail more often than they succeed. Apple started small and are now the biggest business on planet, but look at Commodore, look at Gateway 2000, look at all the high flying workstation companies of the late 80s. Look at all the dead retailers, the dead restaurant chains.

    The mill hunkies and Polacks in my family who worked in Chicago-Republic Steel, IH Wisconsin Steel, USS South Works-had good lives and are all dead now, but most of them died happier than their kids,most of them became engineers and accountants and such and had decent lives and families but they worked 70, 80 hour weeks, they had more stuff but their kids in turn went to shit as often as not due to a total lack of parental attention.

    If people need encouragement to start their own businesses, they shouldn't be starting their own businesses-it's a pretty good rule. The GOP of the Chamber of Commerce needs to die, worse than the Democrats do. We need to rig the system so if you want to make a lot of money and have the capacity for hard smart work, the drive and the ruthlessness you can, but you have to be a net asset and not a net liability to Joe Average. Offshoring manufacturing needs to be made unprofitable or marginally profitable. The FIRE sector needs trimming down to size.

    It won't happen, of course, because in the long run the Empire is doomed and there is going to be an enormous upheaval. And in the short run, Joe Average is too naive, too unorganized, too bovine to do what needs doing.

    Conservatives and the GOP constantly promote and aggrandize small business when in truth, a lot of people have no business being in business for themselves and do much better as employees in a paternalistic corporation with benefits.

    Very salient point in a great overall comment. Some are just better suited to working the nuances of the large corporation.

  200. @Pincher Martin

    Not according to the Washington Post in this article published yesterday (4/16):
     
    I read something different last week.

    But let's assume the WP is right. The trajectory for this virus, which has been in country for just a couple of months, is still in line to hit the #1 spot - even with 85 percent of the country under severe social distancing restrictions.

    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/EVzR2YlWoAA08ji.jpg


    And it’s pretty obvious now that Coronavirus is not going to produce an annual number of deaths comparable to those caused by heart disease.
     
    Again, that is only true because of the social distancing restrictions that have been put in place by most states. Even with those restrictions, 10,000 Americans have still died over the past five days. If that daily rate continues for a year (it won't - but let's pretend we did nothing about the spread of the virus), the number of dead would be over 700,000 - or slightly higher than the estimated 600,000+ Americans who die every year because of cancer and heart disease.

    “Again, that is only true because of the social distancing restrictions that have been put in place by most states.”

    This argument reminds me of the story about the Vermonter whose neighbors complain to the sheriff that he’s filled his yard with sheep dung and the smell is unbearable. The sheriff pays a visit and asks the man why he’s created this smelly public nuisance. The man tells him that he does it to keep tigers away. The sheriff scratches his head and asks the man if he really thinks sheep dung keeps tigers away. The man responds, “Do you see any tigers around here?”

    • Agree: vhrm
    • Replies: @Pincher Martin
    That has got to be the dumbest and most inapt analogy I've read this entire week.
  201. @Steve Sailer
    The R0 for the typical winter flu is around 1.3. Nobody knows what the R0 is for this without extraordinary distancing, but it's clearly much higher.

    This spreads faster, so we locked down to keep it from generating so many cases that the healthcare system got overloaded. Even in NYC, the system has bent, but not broken. Time to let more people get infected yet?

    Of course, current death totals in NYC are 8893. If it’s a .1% killer, then everyone is infected.

  202. @Alexander Turok
    I try to always counter the arguments, as I did when I said: "the shutdowns were what prevented all the deaths we warned would happen without them." Sometimes I also call people names. There are some instances where there are no arguments present to counter, in which name-calling is all I have.

    Thank you for your reply

    I try to always counter the arguments, as I did when I said: “the shutdowns were what prevented all the deaths we warned would happen without them.”

    Writing “the shutdowns were what prevented all the deaths” is assertion more than argument. That said, I’m sympathetic to being unable to make an argument about this because:

    It is difficult if not impossible to make really sound arguments about this because there are far too many unknowns. There still isn’t widespread testing so nobody really knows how many people have been exposed (exposed as distinct from symptomatic) other than in some fairly small subsets (that cruise ship, the US carrier, a few towns here and there). And even those subsets have factors that distinguish them from other towns so one can’t draw a firm conclusion. For example: the aircraft carrier is populated by relatively young people – the captain himself was only 50 – who are for the most part in fairly decent physical shape so we would think this would make them less susceptible to illness and death. However there are also approximately 5,000 people crammed onto it and they live in tight confines, walk through very narrow passageways, eat in close proximity to others so this would theoretically increase their viral load thus making them more susceptible. We can’t really export that data and apply it to Whereversville, USA.

    It also seems as if there are countless variables for which the effect isn’t understood: age, race, various other physical maladies, genetics, air quality in the vicinity, viral load (we know viral load is a factor but we don’t know how much of a factor), prior vaccinations (or lack thereof) for various other viruses, weather (and its own sub factors such as temperature, humidity). The fact we are whatever months into this and we’re still reading things like “why is Silicon Valley different from NY” is because nobody really knows.

    I am of the opinion the widespread lockdowns are mostly overreactions by innumerate politicians and ass-covering bureaucrats like Dr. “heterosexuals are as likely to get AIDS as homosexuals” Fauci, but I freely admit I don’t really know that.

    Some arguments are better than others of course. But even the best arguments are based on a fairly high degree of speculation.

    Sometimes I also call people names. There are some instances where there are no arguments present to counter, in which name-calling is all I have.

    I’m guilty of this at times as well, though mostly I direct it at a few deserving targets like Corvirus. In general though name-calling makes one look emotional and easily baited. Maybe its better to just ignore them.

    Stay safe.

  203. @TomSchmidt
    "Again, that is only true because of the social distancing restrictions that have been put in place by most states."

    I guess the drop in Sweden is also due to the social distancing measures they put in place?
    https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/sweden/
    http://www.euromomo.eu/

    Nasty spike, with deaths 8stDev above the normal death rate (not as bad as locked-down UK, of course).

    Sweden isn’t testing that much, Tom. So how would the Swedes know if their infection rate was slowing down? Or what their infection rate was compared to other European countries?

    Plus, Sweden is one of the least densely populated countries in Europe, while the UK – and even more so England – is one of the most densely populated countries in Europe. Such things matter when talking about the spread of the virus.

    • Replies: @TomSchmidt
    I ignore "infection rate" since the data are so subject to selection bias. Deaths are much harder to fake. Sweden has seen dropping deaths from the virus of late, as have a number of countries. Most locked down, severely. Sweden has locked down, mildly, canceling large gatherings. The euromomo data show overall deaths in excess. The spike in Italy and Spain shows this virus to have caused one or two more StDev more deaths than the flu of a few years back. That's rare.

    In point of fact, we could all do with some randomized sampling to get more realistic infection rates.

    Your point about population density is well taken. Sweden is doing poorly on a density comparison. It's doing better on overall death rates by StDev than Scotland, which is the least-densely populated part of the UK, and was fully locked down.

    Spain versus Portugal is another interesting case in deaths at Euromomo. The lockdown is evident in the latter in deaths being BELOW the normal level for this time of year. They're under dying as a result. Best argument I've read is either high pollution in Madrid causes lung damage, or latent TB due to Spain's having stopped inoculating for TB, and Portugal having continued it.
  204. UK says:
    @Anonymousse
    Yep... all the real evidence says lockdown should never have happened but since it ALREADY happened it should NOW be lifted completely, everywhere, and immediately. Corona was never a real threat but our terrible decision making IS.

    An awful lot of people seem to have climbed way up in a tree with their rhetoric on this one (media, international organizations, healthcare experts, politicians generally, even trump, and yes Sailer too) and are all kind of politely edging their way back down.

    It’s fine if they want to play this game and even act like the initial reaction made sense. But it’s not fine when the face saving is dragging this thing out potentially months more at a cost of trillions of dollars, millions of jobs, hundreds of thousands of businesses, and yes thousands of lives through despair and disruption.

    News organizations are barely even *carrying* the new antibody studies and if they do they are portraying it as a SCARY BAD result (OH NO 85x as many people have this DEADLY VIRUS!). That’s how dishonest we are still being on this; your average normie still thinks their healthy third grader could keel over at any second.

    If they don’t come clean and admit the gigantic mistake they’ve made... regular people may be scared enough to stay home - even when the dozens of people on the task force decided we’ve jumped through sufficient hoops. This demand and productivity destruction could be catastrophic just by itself.

    What’s really strange is that a consensus has actually emerged among professionals in this area and is very similar to your post, but politics has prevented it from emerging as a proper talking point. Politicians are too scared to repeat it as the volume of public and media hysteria is petrifying.

    Sweden followed the expert advice all of the way through because constitutionally the experts were in charge and Swedish people are conformist enough to not buck that wisdom.

    Ironically, the people who shout at others to stay home while screaming “science is science” are most certainly not on the side of the science. They had some backing two months ago because there were enough unknowns for a wide range of views to fit (just) within consensus, but not anymore.

    Meanwhile the lunatic “it is a hoax and also a terrible virus that the Jews released” lot have happened to find themselves at least in the same direction as the experts, if for difference reasons and far off to the extreme.

    Ron Unz is just following his usual pattern of being absolutely wrong about everything, except on totally banal statements, like “China is a rising power”, to which everyone (except perhaps rhetorically and hyperbolically) agrees and has agreed for many decades. Of course he takes his proven record of repeating banal talking points in an astonished tone, as proof of his actual crackpot theories and general genius. Or maybe he is just a troll amusedly hoovering up all dissident traffic onto one website. The website is phenomenal so he is certainly some kind of savant regardless.

    Meanwhile China’s reaction was just some mix of coverup, overreaction to their initial failure and a natural result of their overbearing authoritarian government. It amazes the ignorant only. Just as the ignorant are amazed by China still massively lagging Hong Kong despite Hong Kong having gotten rich (with China still being poor on average) with a disinterested and exhausted British government in charge.

    Sweden will be absolutely vindicated in a year. Almost everyone else will look pretty foolish. Or not, because the Emperor rarely admits to wearing no clothes.

    • Agree: Hail
    • Replies: @Hail

    Sweden will be absolutely vindicated in a year
     
    Sweden is already vindicated, as we speak, as far as I'm concerned. In fact, probably by early April it was already a done deal. Now that we're into the latter part of April, there's just no question.

    There is a lag effect here, and people are reacting to situations they see now but which reflect conditions of x days/weeks ago, like seeing the light of a distant star, light that is already x million years old.

    It's settled. It's over.

    I know this is late-thread. I do think the commentariat here is sharp, and if there are well-meaning holdouts out there who still believe this is an apocalyptic virus best comparable the 1918 Influenza, I'd just say they need to read more on the matter.

    I recommend the series "A Swiss Doctor on COVID19" from the excellent website Swiss Propaganda Research. The website OffGuardian has also truly distinguished itself in this.

    The series of updates from Dr. Knut Wittkowski which I have been re-posting here (that links to a series of replies with updates from him that he has been posting elsewhere) may also be helpful. Wittkowski, among many other actual experts, knew of what he spoke, and called it right; this is his field of expertise, alas, but no one listened; the media had already made its pact with the devil.


    Almost everyone else will look pretty foolish.
     
    I must say that while a lot of people look bad, at really all layers of society, I have noticed the Germanic NW Europeans (with Sweden the standout on a national-policy basis) as being leading anti-Panic voices. Several Swiss have distinguished themselves. A lot of Germans. The Netherlands did pretty well with resisting the madness, afaik. Brazil's president did well in a personal sense but I'm not clear on whether he was bale to keep the wackos and Shutdown-fanatics at bay.

    The English-speaking countries did well for a time, but then caved in. Our achilles heel was and is a bloodthirsty, "Enemy of the People" media, a hostile and parasitic force attached to a society it hates rather than an organic part of the society.

    What is the lesson of the Coronavirus Crisis? In three Latin words. I'll submit this one:

    MEDIA DELENDA EST.

  205. @Alexander Turok
    Source?

    https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-020-01003-6

    Some specifics from, you know, THE model, the one that got the U.K. locked down. First, the death rate of infected people was assumed at .9%, which was fitted to the U.K. population. As pointed out for real data from Santa Clara, with 73 deaths and 81,000 possible infections, you have .09% infection fatality rate, an order of magnitude wrong. Using the lower number of infections in the county, you have .15% IFR, 50% worse than the flu, we think. That’s only six times lower.

    Take a look at the graph from that article derived from the model. According to it, we should be experiencing deaths of 1/100,000 now in the USA, or about 3300/day. According to Worldometers, we were 1/3rd of that yesterday.

    Further from the model: “had the United States taken no action against the virus, it would have seen 2.18 million deaths. By comparison, the earlier agent-based simulation, run using the same assumptions about mortality rate and reproduction number, estimated 2.2 million US deaths.”

    That prediction flows from the .9% IFR, since it suggests that .67% of the entire country would have died from the virus. The data From a number of studies show clearly: the model was WRONG. Catastrophically so, since the Chinese-style lockdowns put in place in response to it throughout the West will drive millions into poverty and early graves from deaths of despair. But that isn’t the fault of the model but the politicians: the modelers are only the court eunuchs serving the emperor’s desires.

  206. @JosephB
    Sure thing! If those who continue to socially distance are forced to sign an agreement to forgo any COVID-related benefits, and any unemployment compensation beyond that which existed January 1, 2020. Hey, if you're not willing to risk generating the revenue that funds these wondrous schemes, why should you benefit from them?

    Hey, if you’re not willing to risk generating the revenue that funds these wondrous schemes, why should you benefit from them?

    Same reason a Japanese can collect unemployment if he was working next to Fukushima Daiichi and wasn’t willing to take the risk to keep generating revenue.

    We tend to want to direct help to people who are in need for no fault of their own. You could point out “hey, the disabled person is asking for aid and the lazy person who doesn’t want to work is asking for aid, where’s the difference?” There’s no hypocrisy in wanting to help one rather than the other. Similarly, I want to help victims of radiation sickness who are blameless and not those who purposely ventured into the irradiated zone. I want to help corona victims who are blameless and not those who acted recklessly and got infected.

    • Replies: @JosephB
    The problem is you equate "acting blamelessly" with taking extreme precaution for safety, with little to no consideration of its economic impact. If it stopped there, I'd be ok. Some would call those folks "smart," others would consider them "cowards." But such people also want:
    1. The moral high ground.
    2. Payment from others who continue to work (e.g., cashiers).
    3. Payment from...someone once the economy sort of restarts.

    To me, that is selfishness.

    I have no direct skin in the game. My job and my wife's job are both safe and I can work remotely. I'm not a social animal, and have multiple risk factors so would socially distance anyway.
  207. @Anonymous

    Small business is extinct. Permanently. Period.
     
    No, small business is never extinct. Even in the Soviet Union where it was outright illegal, there were small businesses.

    But small business is inherently ephemeral. People start them, and wind them up. By nature, it's a rough way to make a living. Conservatives and the GOP constantly promote and aggrandize small business when in truth, a lot of people have no business being in business for themselves and do much better as employees in a paternalistic corporation with benefits.

    The fifties, sixties and seventies were the golden era of being a working class schlub because a 100 IQ guy could get a union job, or a nonunion job from a plant that paid more to keep the union out, with a defined benefit pension plan (because even most white people can not plan very well for their future-let alone blacks and mestizos) and healthcare. A lot of people sent their kids through college largely or wholly on their dime, bought little vacation houses and boats and even airplanes, and had comfortable retirements who in their own businesses would have made a major cock-up of it and died penniless.

    Even bigger businesses fail more often than they succeed. Apple started small and are now the biggest business on planet, but look at Commodore, look at Gateway 2000, look at all the high flying workstation companies of the late 80s. Look at all the dead retailers, the dead restaurant chains.

    The mill hunkies and Polacks in my family who worked in Chicago-Republic Steel, IH Wisconsin Steel, USS South Works-had good lives and are all dead now, but most of them died happier than their kids,most of them became engineers and accountants and such and had decent lives and families but they worked 70, 80 hour weeks, they had more stuff but their kids in turn went to shit as often as not due to a total lack of parental attention.

    If people need encouragement to start their own businesses, they shouldn't be starting their own businesses-it's a pretty good rule. The GOP of the Chamber of Commerce needs to die, worse than the Democrats do. We need to rig the system so if you want to make a lot of money and have the capacity for hard smart work, the drive and the ruthlessness you can, but you have to be a net asset and not a net liability to Joe Average. Offshoring manufacturing needs to be made unprofitable or marginally profitable. The FIRE sector needs trimming down to size.

    It won't happen, of course, because in the long run the Empire is doomed and there is going to be an enormous upheaval. And in the short run, Joe Average is too naive, too unorganized, too bovine to do what needs doing.

    Excellent comment. Pick a name, as Intelligent dasein said.

  208. @Mr. Anon

    There seems a great deal of evidence that “viral load” may sometimes be an important factor in deaths or serious cases of Coronavirus. For example, lots of young, perfectly healthy doctors have died, something that should otherwise be exceptionally rare. And perhaps the viral load factor is continuous rather than based upon a threshold exposure level.
     
    It would make sense that viral load would be important. However, are you sure that "lots of young, perfectly healthy doctors have died."? Were they all perfectly healthy? Were they all young? A few weeks ago, the Italian equivalent to the AMA put out a list of about a hundred doctors who died of COVID-19 - a list with dates of birth and death - and implied that they died while practicing medicine during the epidemic. When it was pointed out to them that a lot of those doctors were in there in their 80s and 90s and were probably just retirees who had succumbed as might any other retiree, that Italian medical organization................removed all the birth dates from the website.

    However, are you sure that “lots of young, perfectly healthy doctors have died.”?

    Well, I haven’t tried to produce a list. But that famous early doctor in China died in his 30s, and there was a big NYT Magazine piece about the first case in NJ, a young perfectly healthy physicians assistant in his 30s who came very close to dying. I’m sure I’ve read other stories here and there as well.

    • Replies: @UK
    Can I write a bloviating and tendentious article "explaining" how proportions work while claiming that those who disagree with me are "End of Days/Ragnarokists", and adding in my pet theories about how the world is actually secretly ruled by cats?
  209. @botazefa
    "Voters in Michigan will keep collecting unemployment"

    For 20 weeks: https://eligibility.com/unemployment/michigan-mi-unemployment-benefits

    My my count, that means Michiganers will be running out of benefits just in time for the election. Who do you think they are likely to blame for their predicament? Trump?

    That’s why the benefits will be extended. I repeat myself when I say that you can’t imagine any alternative to wagin’. Others can.

  210. Important/relevant thread:

    • Replies: @Polynikes
    Yes... the guy selling the “cure” doesn’t want to ease up on social distancing. Shocker.

    PT Barnum would’ve been sheepish in his own naivety claiming there’s a sucker born every minute had he visited unz.com. Clearly he underestimated.
  211. @jsm

    The death counts are being pulled out of statistical noise. Gross excess deaths are not materializing.
     
    Could you give the cite for this? I need it for an argument I'm having.

    Check out this post by Hail. He has graphs showing deaths consistent with prior year flu spikes. His comment feed in general contains lots of links to useful information.

    https://www.unz.com/anepigone/conflusion/#comment-3837493

  212. @XYZ (no Mr.)
    You also stressed a 1% percent mortality rate -- it's right there, in some of your old posts. Besides this Santa Clara County study there was also the study in Gangelt, Germany that revealed the Wuhan virus is much more widespread than was commonly assumed. And my original comment -- math error and all -- was alluding to the fact that many exponential growth proponents are also pretty firm about the Wuhan virus being much deadlier to an individual that catches it than the flu, and certainly the American media constantly pushes stories to the public to believe this. Only 'skeptics' seemed to doubt the official 1% percent line. That is my takeaway from these studies, not that the virus doesn't spread fast to large numbers of people, and in doing so manage to kill many.

    this Santa Clara County study

    Actually, I think this Santa Clara County study has been totally demolished by others in the comments here, who actually read the preprint, and also on a few Twitter threads:

    https://www.unz.com/isteve/infection-rate-in-silicon-valley-was-under-5-in-early-april/#comment-3845575

    It’s just garbage and no one should now take it seriously.

    You also stressed a 1% percent mortality rate — it’s right there, in some of your old posts.

    Absolutely. And the data from South Korea, which did very thorough testing, had even pointed to a 2% fatality rate:

    https://www.unz.com/akarlin/corona-cfr-in-korea/

    However, I’ve been persuaded that asymptomatic cases are far more common than was previously believed, so on balance 1% is probably high. But there are so many conflicting datapoints, it’s very difficult to form a solid opinion right now.

    • Replies: @res

    It’s just garbage and no one should now take it seriously.
     
    I could be wrong, but it pushes my Bayesian predictive distribution a little lower. Not that I have formally worked one out, but after seeing that Santa Clara County study I think the chance of 0.5% is a bit higher and 1.0% a bit lower than I thought before.

    Your NYC counterargument is the most compelling I have seen. Can you recommend others? Most of the Twitter storm seems to be short of concrete arguments (especially the quantitative kind) and is just (fairly valid) complaints about assumptions.
    , @Anatoly Karlin
    To date the Diamond Princess is our only fully controlled "petri dish". Age-adjusted IFR stands at ~1.5% there.

    https://twitter.com/tomaspueyo/status/1251203756076777474

    People who take cruises are, I assume, wealthier/healthier than average at any age group, and they all had access to hospital healthcare.
  213. @Manfred Arcane
    OK, newest Doomer. I don't know if you're from the Alt-Reich branch or the Antifa branch of Doomerism, but both branches keep pushing this "die for the dow" nonsense, and I am sick of it. Trump is not trying to save "the dow" by pushing back against the Corona Panic Shutdown--he's trying to save people's jobs, more of which are being lost every day because of the disgraceful Doomer hysteria of you and your kind. Most people need jobs because they have to, like, provide for their families and stuff, and to most ordinary people, being unable to do stuff like that is a lot scarier than the possibility of getting a virus with a fatality rate not much worse than that of the flu. Trying to make sure that people can keep their jobs is about as populist as it gets, and trying to force the populace to live like cringing, welfare-dependent bugmen--which you Doomers want--is about as anti-populist as it gets.

    the possibility of getting a virus with a fatality rate not much worse than that of the flu

    That isn’t true.

    Trying to make sure that people can keep their jobs is about as populist as it gets, and trying to force the populace to live like cringing, welfare-dependent bugmen–which you Doomers want–is about as anti-populist as it gets.

    I never thought of unemployment benefits as “anti-populist.” Maybe you’re just saying “populist” when you mean “libertarian.” It’s a standard liberal and libertarian talking point that any benefits one receives from the government are equivalent to welfare and that you’re a “hypocrite” if you support one government program and reject another. I reject that notion completely. To quote my reply to the other commenter:

    You could point out “hey, the disabled person is asking for aid and the lazy person who doesn’t want to work is asking for aid, where’s the difference?” There’s no hypocrisy in wanting to help one rather than the other.

    I can’t think of anything more anti-populist than the notion that workers should have to brave sickness and death in order to avoid being accused of collecting welfare by the Koch brothers.

    • Replies: @Manfred Arcane
    I still can't tell if you're a Richard Spencer acolyte or a Bernie Bro, but either way you're betraying utter ignorance of the way the world works and of the people you claim you want to help. Your smug disdain for "waging" ignores the reality that the vast majority of people live in and have lived in since the dawn of time.

    You appear to believe that the millions of workers who are losing their jobs to hysteria over a bad flu/cold can simply live happily off unemployment indefinitely. They can't; UE benefits are designed to allow people to scrape by on a temporary basis, not provide a full substitute for lost wages. The working class doesn't want to be free from all risk of catching this ridiculously overhyped disease; they want to be able to provide for their families, see their friends and relatives, go to church, engage in recreation, and live without having to be dependent on a heartless bureaucracy for a bare subsistence, as you apparently want them to do.

    If anything useful has come out of the Hysteria Pandemic of 2020, it's the exposure of so many Internet "independent thinkers" as friendless, childless, clueless, cowardly, and selfish Doomers who will believe anything the Establishment tells them as long as it's based on impressively complex-looking data, and who will throw middle-class and working-class whites under the bus if allows them to feel smart. Tony Martel recently got all his columns on Occidental Dissent deleted for pointing this out, but it's true nonetheless.

    , @Kratoklastes

    That isn’t true.
     
    Oh, yes it is... unless you're a chronically-ill person above 75.

    Why is it that Doomers are so fixated on age-agnosticism?

    Let's assume you're not a charlatan - i.e., someone whose position is based on fear, but who pretends that it's based on data.

    Get some data and delete anything to do with the 75+ cohort (if the highest age bracket is 65+ delete those).

    Do it assiduously - for cases, hospitalisations, ICU admissions (if available), and deaths.

    Here are links to PDFs files for the latest data on cases, hospitalisations, and deaths by age cohort for NYC. NYC's testing data is not worth looking at: they've only done 227k tests and got 129k positives (so about 57% positives), which is evidence that they're only testing likely positives.

     • NYC - Latest Cases by age group, gender and borough
     •  NYC - Latest hospitalisation count by age group, gender and borough
     • NYC - Latest Confirmed-case deaths by age group, gender and borough

    Bottom line:
     • for people under 45, there have only been 383 deaths.
     • of those 383 deaths, there have only been 9 deaths of people with no underlying conditions; 67 where no data on UCs is available, and 316 with known UCs.

    About the only thing that's constant across age groups, is that deaths that have confirmed underlying conditions, are a very large proportion of age-group deaths.

    Over all NYC confirmed cases for people under 75, there have been 4550 deaths, but only 935 deaths where the victim has no-or-unknown comorbidities.

    Given that it's finally becoming obvious that people were right to criticise the 'C' in CFR as being a stupidly retarded under-estimate (because of low- and no-symptom cases), there's a good case for slamming CFR estimates down by at least 1 order of magnitude.

    .

    Seriously: if you're not completely convinced of the extremely low marginal mortality risk for everybody under 75 (even people with chronic underlying conditions), head over to Udemy and sign up for an introductory Excel course, because you've done something wrong.

  214. @LemmusLemmus
    Covid Twitter has gone to work on that paper, now it's toast. Suggesting Twitter is a toaster.

    https://twitter.com/JeanClaudeFox2/status/1251221827193618433

    https://twitter.com/i/status/1251332447691628545

    https://twitter.com/AlanMCole/status/1251493794039705600

    Alan Cole wrote:

    I have zero confidence in the Santa Clara serology study, and the recent work of Eran Bendavid generally.

    Translation:

    “Blasphemy!”

  215. @Anonymous
    eh they got the false positive rate by find 2 false positives out of 400 controls.
    Because most people aren't immune, even a small false positive rate would cause most detections to be mistakes.

    So maybe the false positive rate is 2/400=0.5% like they use.
    Or maybe that was a low estimate from the vagaries of random sampling.
    How much would you wager that number shouldn't really 1 or 3 or 4 our of 400 ?

    And if its 6/400 =1.5% then all the positive are false positives and this is a nothing burger experiment.

    Hard to be that confident with small number statistics. They need to replicate and repeat.

    Excellent point. One may think that the effect of false positives will be cancelled by false negatives but this is not the case when the infection rate is small.

    IR_est=[(N-n)*PFP+ n*(1-PFN)]/N=(1-IR)*PFP+IR*(1-PFN)= IR*(1-PFN-PFP) +PFP

    PFP -probability of false positive
    PFN -probability of false negative
    N – sample size
    n – number of infected
    IR – actual infection rate
    IR_est – estimated infection rate

    The cancellation of errors happens when IR=PFP/(PFP+PFN). When IR<PFP/(PFP+PFN) then a good approximation is IR_est≈IR+PFP, meaning that for small IR the result is always overestimated but it could be corrected by subtracting PFP from the result.

    In the Appendix
    https://www.medrxiv.org/content/medrxiv/suppl/2020/04/17/2020.04.14.20062463.DC1/2020.04.14.20062463-1.pdf

    bases on the test manufacturer specifications (out of 371 negative samples 2 tested positive) and their own small (n=30) test negative sample that all 30 tested negative they estimate the specificity to be 99.5%, meaning that PFP=0.005. Did they subtract this PFP from their result?

    • Replies: @Negrolphin Pool
    Probably even more importantly, due to the uncertainty in the test's specificity, the 95 percent confidence interval for community prevalence of Covid-19 should include zero.

    From the linked post:

    If you really trust these [specificity] numbers, you’re cool: with y=399 and n=401, we can do the standard Agresti-Coull 95% interval based on y+2 and n+4, which comes to [98.0%, 100%].
     
    I'm not familiar with the advanced statistical methods the author uses. But in lay terms, it looks like once the false-positive rate, the probabilistic complement of specificity, equals or exceeds the estimated prevalence rate, then there will be a significant chance that the true prevalence is zero.

    And it looks like, conservatively, the range of possible specificities for the test used drops well below the minimum 98.5 percent needed for the left end of the 95-percent confidence interval for Covid-19 prevalence to stay above zero.

    What this guy wrote looks solid. If so, the study's junk.
  216. @Ron Unz

    this Santa Clara County study
     
    Actually, I think this Santa Clara County study has been totally demolished by others in the comments here, who actually read the preprint, and also on a few Twitter threads:

    https://www.unz.com/isteve/infection-rate-in-silicon-valley-was-under-5-in-early-april/#comment-3845575

    It's just garbage and no one should now take it seriously.

    You also stressed a 1% percent mortality rate — it’s right there, in some of your old posts.
     
    Absolutely. And the data from South Korea, which did very thorough testing, had even pointed to a 2% fatality rate:

    https://www.unz.com/akarlin/corona-cfr-in-korea/

    However, I've been persuaded that asymptomatic cases are far more common than was previously believed, so on balance 1% is probably high. But there are so many conflicting datapoints, it's very difficult to form a solid opinion right now.

    It’s just garbage and no one should now take it seriously.

    I could be wrong, but it pushes my Bayesian predictive distribution a little lower. Not that I have formally worked one out, but after seeing that Santa Clara County study I think the chance of 0.5% is a bit higher and 1.0% a bit lower than I thought before.

    Your NYC counterargument is the most compelling I have seen. Can you recommend others? Most of the Twitter storm seems to be short of concrete arguments (especially the quantitative kind) and is just (fairly valid) complaints about assumptions.

  217. @jsm

    The death counts are being pulled out of statistical noise. Gross excess deaths are not materializing.
     
    Could you give the cite for this? I need it for an argument I'm having.

    “Gross excess deaths are not materializing.”

    They are certainly materialising in Europe, although not everywhere.

    http://www.euromomo.eu/

    Pooled mortality estimates from the EuroMOMO network continue to show a marked increase in excess all-cause mortality overall for the participating European countries, coinciding with the current COVID-19 global pandemic. This overall excess mortality is, however, driven by a very substantial excess mortality in some countries, primarily seen in the age group of 65 years and above, but also in the age group of 15-64 years.
    Data from 24 participating countries or regions were included in this week’s pooled analysis of all-cause mortality.

    Also in NY. Deaths in Sept 2001 were 7,010, deaths March 5-Apr 4 were 9,780.

    https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/04/10/upshot/coronavirus-deaths-new-york-city.html

    • Replies: @LondonBob
    We know covid is a lot more contagious so it is a quicker burner, essentially a very bad flu season is compressed in to a few weeks rather than a couple of months so a spike in excess deaths should be expected. Similarly herd immunity will build up a lot quicker as more are infected. We also know a large number, probably fifty percent, are asymptomatic, we know this is less dangerous than the flu for young people. We also know it is spread by close contact in confined spaces for a period of time, hence the lockdowns of families with some workplaces open hasn't really worked, there was a reason the Chinese separated infected individuals from their families. We know the great ventilator scare was nonsense, oxygen is needed, so the healthcare system is able to handle it.

    What we don't know is why the percentage of people infected on the Diamond Princess and the French aircraft carrier was only around twenty percent. Do some people never get infected, even when exposed to a high viral load in confined spaces?
  218. @Dtbb
    What is a group of lemmings called?

    A leap?

  219. The result of Stanford study is completely incongruent with Lombardy and New You. Its IFR estimate implies that everybody in Lombardy was infected already twice and that almost everybody in New York state is infected. To reconcile Stanford with Lombardy and New York one must postulate that both Lombardy and New York inflate fatalities by orders of magnitude while Santa Clara engages in Swedish shenanigans:

    From Sweden’s Chief Epidemiologist Anders Tegnell
    https://archive.fo/seBhv#selection-981.0-981.230
    April 3
    The Swedes believe that changing how the figures are reported will cut the number of people dying from coronavirus by as much as four fifths, and slash the death rate to well below 1 per cent, perhaps even lower than seasonal flu

    • Replies: @LondonBob
    More likely NY and Lombardy are inflating their figures, we already know that they are recording deaths with Covid, even when the causes is terminal cancer etc.
  220. @LondonBob
    It has been clear for a long time this isn't much worse than a bad flu.

    https://twitter.com/AlexBerenson/status/1251342767189626880?s=20

    The economic impact of the lockdown and the unwinding of the huge leverage in the world economy is without precedent though.

    “It has been clear for a long time this isn’t much worse than a bad flu.”

    Nothing will be clear until a year from now. If you’re proven wrong at that time, will you bring the dead back to life?

    We are working with data that would be considered preliminary in any other situation. In this case, we’re discussing a study that hasn’t even passed peer review. Most papers end up getting rejected, and this is probably one of them. It has two irremediable flaws:

    – the rate of false positives is inevitably many times higher than the rate of false negatives.

    – the death rate is a lagging indicator, but we cannot quantify the time lag with any certainty. The author assumes a two-week lag between infection and death. In my opinion, that assumption is wrong. The real lag is probably longer, but nobody knows how long it should be. Any estimate will be biased toward a short time lag because we are still at the beginning of this pandemic.

    All of these studies suffer from another problem: different populations seem to react differently to the virus. It looks like the virus is most virulent within a belt of territory that covers the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East, and East Asia. Ashkenazi Jews also seem to be badly affected. These are populations that have a long history of coevolving with respiratory viruses in “crowded environments,” i.e., where people live in proximity not only to other people but also to domesticated animals. In any case, we should not base our judgments on data from one population and assume that everyone else will react the same way.

    Finally, we focus on the death rate because it presumably leaves little room for uncertainty. There is no such thing as asymptomatic death. A dead body is a dead body.

    Unfortunately, the death rate is not the only way COVID-19 differs from the seasonal flu. COVID-19 causes much more damage to other organs of the body, and most people who get hospitalized will end up suffering some permanent damage to those organs. That outcome is harder to quantify than death, yet it is just as real.

    • Replies: @Nonsubhomine
    If you and all the panic-mongers are proved wrong in a year, will you give back what people have lost? Why does a pandemic skeptic bear the gravest burden of his error, while the pandemic pushers have no responsibility for all of the human suffering caused by this massive overreaction—which is truly “harder to quantify than death, yet...just as real? Many of the effects of missed work, school, recreation, i.e., missed life, are no more reversible than a death due to one particular virus. (And let us not forget, of course, the people literally dying right now as a result of the quasi-quarantine.)
    , @res

    The author assumes a two-week lag between infection and death
     
    Why do people (you and Ron here) keep saying this? From the Stanford Santa Clara County paper (emphasis mine):

    We can use our prevalence estimates to approximate the infection fatality rate from COVID-19 in Santa Clara County. As of April 10, 2020, 50 people have died of COVID-19 in the County, with an average increase of 6% daily in the number of deaths. If our estimates of 48,000-81,000 infections represent the cumulative total on April 1, and we project deaths to April 22 (a 3 week lag from time of infection to death22), we estimate about 100 deaths in the county. A hundred deaths out of 48,000-81,000 infections corresponds to an infection fatality rate of 0.12-0.2%. If antibodies take longer than 3 days to appear, if the average duration from case identification to death is less than 3 weeks, or if the epidemic wave has peaked and growth in deaths is less than 6% daily, then the infection fatality rate would be lower. These straightforward estimations of infection fatality rate fail to account for age structure and changing treatment approaches to COVID-19. Nevertheless, our prevalence estimates can be used to update existing fatality rates given the large upwards revision of under-ascertainment.
     
    P.S. Figured it out. Steve also quoted a WSJ oped which used the two week figure to estimate an IFR of 0.01%. That estimate deserves your scorn. But that's not the paper.
  221. @Anon
    Fatalities may be related to a bad diagnosis. Italians have discovered (through autopsies) covid19 is not a respiratory insufficiency problem, but a disseminated micro thrombosis. There is hope and evidence the new diagnosis allows for home treatment.
    https://www.maurizioblondet.it/eparina-funziona-scoperta-del-genio-italico-e-il-suo-contrario/

    The Anglosphere media is very quite about this, only hinting that heroic New York doctors question use of ventilators (see Daily Mail)

    In Spain, Italy and Mexico, doctors are already treating with anti-inflammatories, anti-coagulants and antibiotics (if required). An internist suggested, for example: a throat medicine Bisolvon, Ivermectin or Hidroxicloroquina, Tylex 750 (ibuprofen still controversial), and two subcutaneous inyections a day of Clexane 60mg S.C. (heparin).

    Blacks get blood clots at a higher rate than whites. Here’s a study:

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26888256

  222. @Daniel Williams

    On a daily basis, coronavirus took over the #1 spot sometime last week.
     
    Not according to the Washington Post in this article published yesterday (4/16):

    They wrote:


    Covid-19 killed more people from April 6 to April 12 than any other cause of death except heart disease typically does in a normal April week.
     
    And it’s pretty obvious now that Coronavirus is not going to produce an annual number of deaths comparable to those caused by heart disease.

    Washington Post in this article published yesterday (4/16) […]:

    Covid-19 killed more people from April 6 to April 12 than any other cause of death except heart disease typically does in a normal April week.

    I assume this refers to all coronavirus-positive deaths; many would have died anyway.

    Alexander Turok wants unpatriotic people who ask too much questions (like the above) to wear Yellow Stars that say ‘Corona Denier,’ but it’s a point worth repeating until we get answers. We have heard answers for other countries, and the effect is large.

  223. Anon[397] • Disclaimer says:
    @Anon
    Fatalities may be related to a bad diagnosis. Italians have discovered (through autopsies) covid19 is not a respiratory insufficiency problem, but a disseminated micro thrombosis. There is hope and evidence the new diagnosis allows for home treatment.
    https://www.maurizioblondet.it/eparina-funziona-scoperta-del-genio-italico-e-il-suo-contrario/

    The Anglosphere media is very quite about this, only hinting that heroic New York doctors question use of ventilators (see Daily Mail)

    In Spain, Italy and Mexico, doctors are already treating with anti-inflammatories, anti-coagulants and antibiotics (if required). An internist suggested, for example: a throat medicine Bisolvon, Ivermectin or Hidroxicloroquina, Tylex 750 (ibuprofen still controversial), and two subcutaneous inyections a day of Clexane 60mg S.C. (heparin).

    Here’s a paper saying that people with type A blood are more prone to getting blood clots than those with type O. There was a paper published a while back saying that people with type A blood were more prone to getting Covid-19 and dying from it if they had it.

    https://www.medicinenet.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=227586

    “Compared to people with type O blood, individuals in the type A and B groups were 51% more likely to develop deep vein thrombosis and 47% more likely to develop a pulmonary embolism.”

  224. @Peter Frost
    "It has been clear for a long time this isn’t much worse than a bad flu."

    Nothing will be clear until a year from now. If you're proven wrong at that time, will you bring the dead back to life?

    We are working with data that would be considered preliminary in any other situation. In this case, we're discussing a study that hasn't even passed peer review. Most papers end up getting rejected, and this is probably one of them. It has two irremediable flaws:

    - the rate of false positives is inevitably many times higher than the rate of false negatives.

    - the death rate is a lagging indicator, but we cannot quantify the time lag with any certainty. The author assumes a two-week lag between infection and death. In my opinion, that assumption is wrong. The real lag is probably longer, but nobody knows how long it should be. Any estimate will be biased toward a short time lag because we are still at the beginning of this pandemic.

    All of these studies suffer from another problem: different populations seem to react differently to the virus. It looks like the virus is most virulent within a belt of territory that covers the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East, and East Asia. Ashkenazi Jews also seem to be badly affected. These are populations that have a long history of coevolving with respiratory viruses in "crowded environments," i.e., where people live in proximity not only to other people but also to domesticated animals. In any case, we should not base our judgments on data from one population and assume that everyone else will react the same way.

    Finally, we focus on the death rate because it presumably leaves little room for uncertainty. There is no such thing as asymptomatic death. A dead body is a dead body.

    Unfortunately, the death rate is not the only way COVID-19 differs from the seasonal flu. COVID-19 causes much more damage to other organs of the body, and most people who get hospitalized will end up suffering some permanent damage to those organs. That outcome is harder to quantify than death, yet it is just as real.

    If you and all the panic-mongers are proved wrong in a year, will you give back what people have lost? Why does a pandemic skeptic bear the gravest burden of his error, while the pandemic pushers have no responsibility for all of the human suffering caused by this massive overreaction—which is truly “harder to quantify than death, yet…just as real? Many of the effects of missed work, school, recreation, i.e., missed life, are no more reversible than a death due to one particular virus. (And let us not forget, of course, the people literally dying right now as a result of the quasi-quarantine.)

    • Replies: @Mr. Anon

    Many of the effects of missed work, school, recreation, i.e., missed life, are no more reversible than a death due to one particular virus.
     
    It isn't just all that. It is also death. People will die because of the lockdown. People are already dying because of the lockdown. Maybe a lot of people will die because of the lockdown.
  225. @Querc
    Hmm. Study says the manufacturer found that 2 out of 327 control samples (taken pe-covid) were false positives. That would seem to make their raw 1.5% positive result meaningless. Or am I missing something?

    No, I think you’re on to something.

  226. @Peter Frost
    "It has been clear for a long time this isn’t much worse than a bad flu."

    Nothing will be clear until a year from now. If you're proven wrong at that time, will you bring the dead back to life?

    We are working with data that would be considered preliminary in any other situation. In this case, we're discussing a study that hasn't even passed peer review. Most papers end up getting rejected, and this is probably one of them. It has two irremediable flaws:

    - the rate of false positives is inevitably many times higher than the rate of false negatives.

    - the death rate is a lagging indicator, but we cannot quantify the time lag with any certainty. The author assumes a two-week lag between infection and death. In my opinion, that assumption is wrong. The real lag is probably longer, but nobody knows how long it should be. Any estimate will be biased toward a short time lag because we are still at the beginning of this pandemic.

    All of these studies suffer from another problem: different populations seem to react differently to the virus. It looks like the virus is most virulent within a belt of territory that covers the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East, and East Asia. Ashkenazi Jews also seem to be badly affected. These are populations that have a long history of coevolving with respiratory viruses in "crowded environments," i.e., where people live in proximity not only to other people but also to domesticated animals. In any case, we should not base our judgments on data from one population and assume that everyone else will react the same way.

    Finally, we focus on the death rate because it presumably leaves little room for uncertainty. There is no such thing as asymptomatic death. A dead body is a dead body.

    Unfortunately, the death rate is not the only way COVID-19 differs from the seasonal flu. COVID-19 causes much more damage to other organs of the body, and most people who get hospitalized will end up suffering some permanent damage to those organs. That outcome is harder to quantify than death, yet it is just as real.

    The author assumes a two-week lag between infection and death

    Why do people (you and Ron here) keep saying this? From the Stanford Santa Clara County paper (emphasis mine):

    We can use our prevalence estimates to approximate the infection fatality rate from COVID-19 in Santa Clara County. As of April 10, 2020, 50 people have died of COVID-19 in the County, with an average increase of 6% daily in the number of deaths. If our estimates of 48,000-81,000 infections represent the cumulative total on April 1, and we project deaths to April 22 (a 3 week lag from time of infection to death22), we estimate about 100 deaths in the county. A hundred deaths out of 48,000-81,000 infections corresponds to an infection fatality rate of 0.12-0.2%. If antibodies take longer than 3 days to appear, if the average duration from case identification to death is less than 3 weeks, or if the epidemic wave has peaked and growth in deaths is less than 6% daily, then the infection fatality rate would be lower. These straightforward estimations of infection fatality rate fail to account for age structure and changing treatment approaches to COVID-19. Nevertheless, our prevalence estimates can be used to update existing fatality rates given the large upwards revision of under-ascertainment.

    P.S. Figured it out. Steve also quoted a WSJ oped which used the two week figure to estimate an IFR of 0.01%. That estimate deserves your scorn. But that’s not the paper.

    • Replies: @Peter Frost
    Steve also quoted a WSJ oped which used the two week figure to estimate an IFR of 0.01%. That estimate deserves your scorn. But that’s not the paper.

    Yes, I assumed that the lead author, Eran Bendavid, would use the same estimate in the WSJ oped that he used in his paper. Silly me to assume consistency.

    In any case, the other estimate of 3 weeks is likewise wrong. Currently, the lag time is 4 weeks, but that's only because most infections have occurred over the past month. As time goes on, the lag time will steadily lengthen. This is because COVID-19 is not like the seasonal flu. It doesn't simply affect the lungs, it causes damage to other body organs, notably the heart and the liver.

    Let's suppose that the virus disappears from the earth tomorrow. People will continue to die, and the final death toll will be much greater than the current one. In this, it's quite different from the seasonal flu.

  227. @Daniel Williams

    Coronavirus is the #1 cause of death in the U.S. right now.
     
    No it isn’t. Heart disease is. It kills hundreds of thousands of Americans a year.

    No it isn’t. Heart disease is. It kills hundreds of thousands of Americans a year.

    See the graph for NY state at

    https://www.thenewatlantis.com/publications/not-like-the-flu-not-like-car-crashes-not-like

    Coronavirus deaths are now 2.5x greater than all other deaths combined for NY state.

    You can see a heart disease vs CV breakout here:

    https://www.businessinsider.com/coronavirus-deaths-how-pandemic-compares-to-other-deadly-outbreaks-2020-4

    CV is now the #1 cause of death in the US.

    • Replies: @Daniel Williams
    C’mon, at least thoroughly read the article that you yourself sent me:

    Sayeth your experts:

    But last week, reported U.S. Covid-19 deaths were just shy of the normal rate from heart disease, usually the leading cause of death.
     
    It says exactly the same thing that the other goofy guy sent me; i.e., the opposite of the argument you’re trying use it to support.

    I understand that many people died of this illness recently. But I betcha that on December 31, heart disease is gonna be dancing around the ring with a big gaudy belt in its hands.
  228. @Ron Unz

    this Santa Clara County study
     
    Actually, I think this Santa Clara County study has been totally demolished by others in the comments here, who actually read the preprint, and also on a few Twitter threads:

    https://www.unz.com/isteve/infection-rate-in-silicon-valley-was-under-5-in-early-april/#comment-3845575

    It's just garbage and no one should now take it seriously.

    You also stressed a 1% percent mortality rate — it’s right there, in some of your old posts.
     
    Absolutely. And the data from South Korea, which did very thorough testing, had even pointed to a 2% fatality rate:

    https://www.unz.com/akarlin/corona-cfr-in-korea/

    However, I've been persuaded that asymptomatic cases are far more common than was previously believed, so on balance 1% is probably high. But there are so many conflicting datapoints, it's very difficult to form a solid opinion right now.

    To date the Diamond Princess is our only fully controlled “petri dish”. Age-adjusted IFR stands at ~1.5% there.

    People who take cruises are, I assume, wealthier/healthier than average at any age group, and they all had access to hospital healthcare.

    • Replies: @Polynikes
    His data is way off. Ioannidis has age adjusted IFR below 0.1% for the princess ship.

    You also have the roosevelt air craft carrier who’s IFR is 0%.
    , @Daniel Williams

    People who take cruises are, I assume, wealthier/healthier than average at any age group ...
     
    I dunno. Have you seen many cruisers? They’re often outrageously fat—one of the attractions on those boats are the neverending troughs.

    David Foster Wallace wrote about it—a lot—in Harper’s:


    I have seen every type of erythema, pre-rnelanomic lesion, liver spot, eczema, wart, papular cyst, pot belly, femoral cellulite, varicosity, collagen and sili- cone enhancement, bad tint, hair transplants that have not taken-Le., I have seen nearly naked a lot of people I would prefer not to have seen nearly naked.
     

    Most of the exposed bodies to be seen all over the daytime Nadir were in various stages of disintegration.
     
    , @Felix Keverich
    Your calculations seem way off. 712 people contracted corona on the Diamond Princess. Those were all people in their 60-80s. 13 died. That's 1,8%. So how do you age-adjust it to 1,5%? Makes no sense.
  229. @Manfred Arcane
    OK, newest Doomer. I don't know if you're from the Alt-Reich branch or the Antifa branch of Doomerism, but both branches keep pushing this "die for the dow" nonsense, and I am sick of it. Trump is not trying to save "the dow" by pushing back against the Corona Panic Shutdown--he's trying to save people's jobs, more of which are being lost every day because of the disgraceful Doomer hysteria of you and your kind. Most people need jobs because they have to, like, provide for their families and stuff, and to most ordinary people, being unable to do stuff like that is a lot scarier than the possibility of getting a virus with a fatality rate not much worse than that of the flu. Trying to make sure that people can keep their jobs is about as populist as it gets, and trying to force the populace to live like cringing, welfare-dependent bugmen--which you Doomers want--is about as anti-populist as it gets.

    Nicely put.

  230. @Pincher Martin
    Sweden isn't testing that much, Tom. So how would the Swedes know if their infection rate was slowing down? Or what their infection rate was compared to other European countries?

    Plus, Sweden is one of the least densely populated countries in Europe, while the UK - and even more so England - is one of the most densely populated countries in Europe. Such things matter when talking about the spread of the virus.

    I ignore “infection rate” since the data are so subject to selection bias. Deaths are much harder to fake. Sweden has seen dropping deaths from the virus of late, as have a number of countries. Most locked down, severely. Sweden has locked down, mildly, canceling large gatherings. The euromomo data show overall deaths in excess. The spike in Italy and Spain shows this virus to have caused one or two more StDev more deaths than the flu of a few years back. That’s rare.

    In point of fact, we could all do with some randomized sampling to get more realistic infection rates.

    Your point about population density is well taken. Sweden is doing poorly on a density comparison. It’s doing better on overall death rates by StDev than Scotland, which is the least-densely populated part of the UK, and was fully locked down.

    Spain versus Portugal is another interesting case in deaths at Euromomo. The lockdown is evident in the latter in deaths being BELOW the normal level for this time of year. They’re under dying as a result. Best argument I’ve read is either high pollution in Madrid causes lung damage, or latent TB due to Spain’s having stopped inoculating for TB, and Portugal having continued it.

    • Replies: @Pincher Martin

    I ignore “infection rate” since the data are so subject to selection bias. Deaths are much harder to fake.
     
    Both stats have their problems. We already know, for example, that fully one-third of the possible coronavirus deaths in New York City have been listed by the authorities as only "probable" coronavirus deaths rather than "confirmed" coronavirus deaths. And those are just the ones they've decided to list as probable.

    That's a helluva difference.

    Many Swedish academics are also complaining that their government's data on COVID-19 is not trustworthy. I don't know if their case has merit, but it's interesting to note that many educated Swedes themselves don't fully trust their government on handling the coronavirus.

    The Swedish government has responded that unlike some European countries they are actually counting deaths inside homes as coronavirus deaths if they have reason to believe they are. But who really knows?

    Most locked down, severely. Sweden has locked down, mildly, canceling large gatherings.
     
    You're mistaking government orders for what is actually happening there. I've read the economy is in shatters. Unemployment is near 10% and getting worse. They had to pass a stimulus package in mid-March and already plan to do another one soon again.

    If you think you can have a plague go through your country and the economy will be alright if the government just pretends the plague is not there and let's individuals assume their own level of risk, guess again.
  231. @Steve Sailer
    But if everybody over a certain age is playing Russian Roulette with 1 bullet in a 100 chamber revolver, how vibrant is the economy going to be?

    A whole lot more vibrant than it is right now.

  232. Anon[312] • Disclaimer says:
    @Anon
    Fatalities may be related to a bad diagnosis. Italians have discovered (through autopsies) covid19 is not a respiratory insufficiency problem, but a disseminated micro thrombosis. There is hope and evidence the new diagnosis allows for home treatment.
    https://www.maurizioblondet.it/eparina-funziona-scoperta-del-genio-italico-e-il-suo-contrario/

    The Anglosphere media is very quite about this, only hinting that heroic New York doctors question use of ventilators (see Daily Mail)

    In Spain, Italy and Mexico, doctors are already treating with anti-inflammatories, anti-coagulants and antibiotics (if required). An internist suggested, for example: a throat medicine Bisolvon, Ivermectin or Hidroxicloroquina, Tylex 750 (ibuprofen still controversial), and two subcutaneous inyections a day of Clexane 60mg S.C. (heparin).

    There is some experience with great results in two days with ivermectin (1 tablet 6 mg today, one in seven days) if taken early on. Of course doctors question whether it was the patient’s response or the pill. But since it is a well-known substance, harmless on humans , it seems a good way to go.

  233. @Ozymandias
    "Facebook ads targeting a representative sample"

    Representative sample of what? Facebook users?

    Facebook users who are itching to know if they’re infected.

  234. @XYZ (no Mr.)
    A long way from herd immunity, and a long way from Wuhan virus being especially deadly to an individual infected. Shouldn't a 1% death rate indicate 5000 to 8000 dead in Santa Clara County alone by now? Where exactly are the dead? Maybe, just maybe, both exponential junkies and skeptics were both a little right. The Wuhan virus is more contagious than the flu, but not more deadly -- as a percentage of the infected. Overall though, it would cause more deaths if no mitigation is taken.

    The 8,893 deaths currently attributed to Covid 19 in New York City — population 8.4 million — imply an absolute minimum local long-term fatality rate of just over .1 percent, which is equivalent to an exceptionally bad flu season. This unrealistically assumes that the entire population has already been infected, has recovered and is immune.

    The caveat is that NYC residents almost certainly suffer from higher rates of comorbidities than those in Silicon Valley, which can have a massively disproportionate mortality impact.

    Applying an assumed 5 percent infection prevalence, this would place the long-term NYC fatality rate at 2 percent. A discrepancy of that magnitude with an IFR in a different location of <.05 percent is still possible, but pushing the limits of probability.

    • Replies: @Negrolphin Pool
    Timed out again. "long-term NYC fatality rate" should read "minimum NYC IFR".
    , @Polynikes
    Or your misplacing malfeasance. The wrong numbers could easily be NYCs. They’re the outlier. You don’t rely on the outlier.
  235. @Negrolphin Pool
    The 8,893 deaths currently attributed to Covid 19 in New York City — population 8.4 million — imply an absolute minimum local long-term fatality rate of just over .1 percent, which is equivalent to an exceptionally bad flu season. This unrealistically assumes that the entire population has already been infected, has recovered and is immune.

    The caveat is that NYC residents almost certainly suffer from higher rates of comorbidities than those in Silicon Valley, which can have a massively disproportionate mortality impact.

    Applying an assumed 5 percent infection prevalence, this would place the long-term NYC fatality rate at 2 percent. A discrepancy of that magnitude with an IFR in a different location of <.05 percent is still possible, but pushing the limits of probability.

    Timed out again. “long-term NYC fatality rate” should read “minimum NYC IFR”.

  236. @Anonymous
    eh they got the false positive rate by find 2 false positives out of 400 controls.
    Because most people aren't immune, even a small false positive rate would cause most detections to be mistakes.

    So maybe the false positive rate is 2/400=0.5% like they use.
    Or maybe that was a low estimate from the vagaries of random sampling.
    How much would you wager that number shouldn't really 1 or 3 or 4 our of 400 ?

    And if its 6/400 =1.5% then all the positive are false positives and this is a nothing burger experiment.

    Hard to be that confident with small number statistics. They need to replicate and repeat.

    Excellent point. One may think that the effect of false positives will be cancelled by false negatives but this is not the case when the infection rate is small.

    IR_est=[(N-n)*PFP+ n*(1-PFN)]/N=(1-IR)*PFP+IR*(1-PFN)= IR*(1-PFN-PFP) +PFP

    PFP -probability of false positive
    PFN -probability of false negative
    N – sample size
    n – number of infected
    IR – actual infection rate
    IR_est – estimated infection rate

    The cancellation of errors happens when IR=PFP/(PFP+PFN). When IR<PFP/(PFP+PFN) then a good approximation is IR_est≈IR+PFP, meaning that for small IR the result is always overestimated but it could be corrected by subtracting PFP from the result.

    In the Appendix
    https://www.medrxiv.org/content/medrxiv/suppl/2020/04/17/2020.04.14.20062463.DC1/2020.04.14.20062463-1.pdf

    bases on the test manufacturer specifications (out of 371 negative samples 2 tested positive) and their own small (n=30) test negative sample that all 30 tested negative they estimate the specificity to be 99.5%, meaning that PFP=0.005. Did they subtract this PFP from their result?

  237. @Nonsubhomine
    If you and all the panic-mongers are proved wrong in a year, will you give back what people have lost? Why does a pandemic skeptic bear the gravest burden of his error, while the pandemic pushers have no responsibility for all of the human suffering caused by this massive overreaction—which is truly “harder to quantify than death, yet...just as real? Many of the effects of missed work, school, recreation, i.e., missed life, are no more reversible than a death due to one particular virus. (And let us not forget, of course, the people literally dying right now as a result of the quasi-quarantine.)

    Many of the effects of missed work, school, recreation, i.e., missed life, are no more reversible than a death due to one particular virus.

    It isn’t just all that. It is also death. People will die because of the lockdown. People are already dying because of the lockdown. Maybe a lot of people will die because of the lockdown.

  238. @Ron Unz
    Actually, I should make one more point...

    A week or two ago, Victor Davis Hanson, a scientifically-ignorant Neocon shill, spouted off that maybe California had already achieved "herd immunity." Naturally, his ridiculous speculation was quickly picked up by National Review, FoxNews, and lots of random retards who were looking for a reason why hated California had done so well.

    Herd immunity would probably be 50-70% exposure. Santa Clara County was the epicenter of the California outbreak and we've now discovered the exposure is more like 2-3%. So VDH's claims were garbage, just as expected.

    Mr. Unz:

    If Professor Hanson is wrong, state your position. But where do get “scientifically-ignorant (sic — you don’t hyphenate adverbs) Neocon shill” on a raison farmer who writes about ancient Greek wars?

    Where do you get Neocon on a guy who goes around giving speeches “The Case for Trump.” Is President Trump a Neocon?

    You need to take a look at yourself if you are an anti-Sweden-ite

    https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=larry+finds+out+his+lawyer+isn%27t+jewish&docid=607986967267708199&mid=6B5ED4C7E4F030FFECAC6B5ED4C7E4F030FFECAC&view=detail&FORM=VIRE

    • Replies: @Alexander Turok

    Where do you get Neocon on a guy who goes around giving speeches “The Case for Trump.” Is President Trump a Neocon?
     
    Thanks for this, it provides a great example of something I find annoying about Trump supporters. They use these words - neocon, globalist, to mean anyone who opposes Trump. So when you complain about Trump appointing all these neocons, that sounds to them like an oxymoron. When the rest of us use the word, we're referring to an ideology/worldview:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neoconservatism
  239. @Anatoly Karlin
    To date the Diamond Princess is our only fully controlled "petri dish". Age-adjusted IFR stands at ~1.5% there.

    https://twitter.com/tomaspueyo/status/1251203756076777474

    People who take cruises are, I assume, wealthier/healthier than average at any age group, and they all had access to hospital healthcare.

    His data is way off. Ioannidis has age adjusted IFR below 0.1% for the princess ship.

    You also have the roosevelt air craft carrier who’s IFR is 0%.

  240. @Negrolphin Pool
    The 8,893 deaths currently attributed to Covid 19 in New York City — population 8.4 million — imply an absolute minimum local long-term fatality rate of just over .1 percent, which is equivalent to an exceptionally bad flu season. This unrealistically assumes that the entire population has already been infected, has recovered and is immune.

    The caveat is that NYC residents almost certainly suffer from higher rates of comorbidities than those in Silicon Valley, which can have a massively disproportionate mortality impact.

    Applying an assumed 5 percent infection prevalence, this would place the long-term NYC fatality rate at 2 percent. A discrepancy of that magnitude with an IFR in a different location of <.05 percent is still possible, but pushing the limits of probability.

    Or your misplacing malfeasance. The wrong numbers could easily be NYCs. They’re the outlier. You don’t rely on the outlier.

    • Replies: @Fredrik
    . We don't know if Silicon Valley or New York/Lombardy are the outliers.

    What we do know is that Silicon Valley is youngish and affluent. I'd say their number is the floor. Don't forget too that whilst IT nerds contrary to public perception are healthy then that's not true for a whole lot of people elsewhere. It's obvious by now that obesity is a major risk factor whether directly or indirectly. It also looks like being a smoker is really bad for you. It's not rocket science but the IFR will be vastly different for different sub-populations. Then it's up to scientists to combine this in a meaningful way.
  241. Anon[368] • Disclaimer says:
    @Anonymous
    "Bummed you didn’t get your apocalypse, huh? Finally get even with all those bullies?"

    There's a fitting symmetry between SJWs and the Infowars crowd which is infesting and destroying the HBDSphere. SJWs appeal to the rage of the thots that so much money is flowing into Silicon Valley. After all, they grew up with a belief that they are naturally superior to those "creepy nerds," so it's a huge social injustice that many of them have more money than they do. The Infowars crowd appeals to similar resentments. Remember the sixteen-year-old who thought he was the King of Coolness because he stole his uncle's beer and stumbled around the suburb drunk? Well, twenty years later, he rages that the "nerds" he once looked down on have more money than him. But while the SJWs make at least semi-coherent demands, for affirmative action jobs and the like, the Infowars man just launches into these incoherent rants. He rants against science, against rationality, sometimes against secularism.(Though he won't listen to clerics either, as he sees them as just another variety of nerd.)

    This isn't to say that you can't criticize the "bugmen." I live in Silicon Valley, I see plenty of weak, cuckolded male feminists here. But the fat middle American who waves the flag, believes in corporate tax cuts, and cheers the neocon wars is really no better.

    Know your place, HBD nerd. How does it feel to know that those fat middle Americans are morally superior to you in every way? Oh well, at least you have your HBD blogs and your $10,000 a month apartment.

    HBD is over and it got replaced by right-wing populism in 2016 so deal with it.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
    "How does it feel to know that those fat middle Americans are morally superior to you in every way?"

    Why, because they believe in a 3000 year old book of fiction most haven't even bothered to read? Or is there some other "morality" that they have and I don't?

    "got replaced by right-wing populism in 2016 so deal with it."

    By right-wing populism you mean the neolib/neocon/neocuck system with a loudmouth New Yorker as a figurehead to rile up the proles.
  242. @Frank the Prof

    No it isn’t. Heart disease is. It kills hundreds of thousands of Americans a year.
     
    See the graph for NY state at

    https://www.thenewatlantis.com/publications/not-like-the-flu-not-like-car-crashes-not-like

    Coronavirus deaths are now 2.5x greater than all other deaths combined for NY state.

    You can see a heart disease vs CV breakout here:

    https://www.businessinsider.com/coronavirus-deaths-how-pandemic-compares-to-other-deadly-outbreaks-2020-4

    CV is now the #1 cause of death in the US.

    C’mon, at least thoroughly read the article that you yourself sent me:

    Sayeth your experts:

    But last week, reported U.S. Covid-19 deaths were just shy of the normal rate from heart disease, usually the leading cause of death.

    It says exactly the same thing that the other goofy guy sent me; i.e., the opposite of the argument you’re trying use it to support.

    I understand that many people died of this illness recently. But I betcha that on December 31, heart disease is gonna be dancing around the ring with a big gaudy belt in its hands.

  243. @Anatoly Karlin
    Important/relevant thread:

    https://twitter.com/PeterKolchinsky/status/1251585935994740736

    Yes… the guy selling the “cure” doesn’t want to ease up on social distancing. Shocker.

    PT Barnum would’ve been sheepish in his own naivety claiming there’s a sucker born every minute had he visited unz.com. Clearly he underestimated.

    • Agree: Manfred Arcane
  244. @Anatoly Karlin
    To date the Diamond Princess is our only fully controlled "petri dish". Age-adjusted IFR stands at ~1.5% there.

    https://twitter.com/tomaspueyo/status/1251203756076777474

    People who take cruises are, I assume, wealthier/healthier than average at any age group, and they all had access to hospital healthcare.

    People who take cruises are, I assume, wealthier/healthier than average at any age group …

    I dunno. Have you seen many cruisers? They’re often outrageously fat—one of the attractions on those boats are the neverending troughs.

    David Foster Wallace wrote about it—a lot—in Harper’s:

    I have seen every type of erythema, pre-rnelanomic lesion, liver spot, eczema, wart, papular cyst, pot belly, femoral cellulite, varicosity, collagen and sili- cone enhancement, bad tint, hair transplants that have not taken-Le., I have seen nearly naked a lot of people I would prefer not to have seen nearly naked.

    Most of the exposed bodies to be seen all over the daytime Nadir were in various stages of disintegration.

  245. @TomSchmidt
    I ignore "infection rate" since the data are so subject to selection bias. Deaths are much harder to fake. Sweden has seen dropping deaths from the virus of late, as have a number of countries. Most locked down, severely. Sweden has locked down, mildly, canceling large gatherings. The euromomo data show overall deaths in excess. The spike in Italy and Spain shows this virus to have caused one or two more StDev more deaths than the flu of a few years back. That's rare.

    In point of fact, we could all do with some randomized sampling to get more realistic infection rates.

    Your point about population density is well taken. Sweden is doing poorly on a density comparison. It's doing better on overall death rates by StDev than Scotland, which is the least-densely populated part of the UK, and was fully locked down.

    Spain versus Portugal is another interesting case in deaths at Euromomo. The lockdown is evident in the latter in deaths being BELOW the normal level for this time of year. They're under dying as a result. Best argument I've read is either high pollution in Madrid causes lung damage, or latent TB due to Spain's having stopped inoculating for TB, and Portugal having continued it.

    I ignore “infection rate” since the data are so subject to selection bias. Deaths are much harder to fake.

    Both stats have their problems. We already know, for example, that fully one-third of the possible coronavirus deaths in New York City have been listed by the authorities as only “probable” coronavirus deaths rather than “confirmed” coronavirus deaths. And those are just the ones they’ve decided to list as probable.

    That’s a helluva difference.

    Many Swedish academics are also complaining that their government’s data on COVID-19 is not trustworthy. I don’t know if their case has merit, but it’s interesting to note that many educated Swedes themselves don’t fully trust their government on handling the coronavirus.

    The Swedish government has responded that unlike some European countries they are actually counting deaths inside homes as coronavirus deaths if they have reason to believe they are. But who really knows?

    Most locked down, severely. Sweden has locked down, mildly, canceling large gatherings.

    You’re mistaking government orders for what is actually happening there. I’ve read the economy is in shatters. Unemployment is near 10% and getting worse. They had to pass a stimulus package in mid-March and already plan to do another one soon again.

    If you think you can have a plague go through your country and the economy will be alright if the government just pretends the plague is not there and let’s individuals assume their own level of risk, guess again.

    • Replies: @LondonBob
    The Swedish economy is highly integrated, the world economy collapses then they also get hit. I have relatives in Sweden, they are not locked down, shops, bars and restaurants are still open. People who can work from home are doing so, large gatherings are banned, but in no sense is this comparable to what most European countries are doing.
    , @TomSchmidt
    Both stats have their problems. We already know, for example, that fully one-third of the possible coronavirus deaths in New York City have been listed by the authorities as only “probable” coronavirus deaths rather than “confirmed” coronavirus deaths. And those are just the ones they’ve decided to list as probable.

    Yes, that's why I trust total deaths more than anything. I guess I did not make that clear. For the euromomo data, you can clearly see a spike in some countries, including Sweden, of recent vintage. Now, it's possible that that March spike was caused by the flu, but that's not when the flu normally peaks; I assume that those excess deaths are COVID.

    NYC expects about 4500 deaths monthly, probably about 4700 in Winter and summer and fewer in fall and spring. I think it's fair to assign all the deaths over 4500 or so to COVID. To quote from one article:
    "That comes out to a projected total of 5155.2 deaths expected for New York City from March 11-April 13, 2020. The reality was 18,551 deaths." I'd call that a little over 13,000 deaths chalked up to the virus.

    That's a lot of deaths; Spanish Flu killed 33k/5.6MM, equivalent to about 52,000 deaths in the city at present size. In other words, the virus has killed 1/4 the number of Spanish flu in one month, while that took 14 months. I don't know how it compares to 1957 or 1968 and those pandemics. Of course, if the virus takes 3 weeks from infection to killing someone (a topic of debate around here), then the people dying from April 9-13 were the ones infected after the lockdown in the city; what you see from March 11-April 8 is essentially what the virus could do in a non-locked-down populace. Deaths after April 9 must almost completely be post-lockdown-infection deaths.

    If the infection fatality rate is 1%, then 1.3MM people int he city must have had the virus already. If below that, as in Santa Clara, then more must have had it. It cannot be a rate of .1% as in Santa Clara, since that would require 1.5x the population of the city.

    I think it's critical to run a randomized population survey to get closer at the truth. If only 15% of New Yorkers have the antibodies, then there's a huge problem.

    The other possibility is that, having been given free rein in the city until March 20th, the virus found its way to a lot of the possible killable people. If so, then we might not see a death spike back on loosening.

    I don't know. I do know that I won't be traveling in the city without a mask for a while, at least until I personally get an antibody test. I suspect the same will be true of anyone with any sense.

  246. @Jus' Sayin'...

    "Again, that is only true because of the social distancing restrictions that have been put in place by most states."
     
    This argument reminds me of the story about the Vermonter whose neighbors complain to the sheriff that he's filled his yard with sheep dung and the smell is unbearable. The sheriff pays a visit and asks the man why he's created this smelly public nuisance. The man tells him that he does it to keep tigers away. The sheriff scratches his head and asks the man if he really thinks sheep dung keeps tigers away. The man responds, "Do you see any tigers around here?"

    That has got to be the dumbest and most inapt analogy I’ve read this entire week.

  247. @TomSchmidt
    "We can take a look at the daily percentage growth in the infection rates in various states since they’ve put restrictions in place."
    Those are bullshit numbers based on biased data. At least the Santa Clara numbers do something to avoid bias. Literally NO state is tracking "growth in the infection rates." The best state-wide data is death rates, and those are going to have to be adjusted for all the deaths miscoded for and against the virus (and there's real incentive now to code everything FOR the virus, so overall deaths may be the only reliable number)

    " I’ve looked at several, and they suggest the restrictions are working in slowing the spread."
    I would look askance on anyone who thought that the lockdown wouldn't slow the spread. I assume it has, even though it is a disastrous policy.

    Interestingly, Andrew Cuomo is gradually coming around to the iSteve idea from February: mask everybody. His literal words a few days ago were "if you cannot practice social distancing, wear a mask." He is VERY close to realizing what the Taiwanese and Koreans already know: masking is social distancing, without all the gestapo questioning people out and about, and without the Pavel Morozovs ratting out their fellow citizens to the authorities for violating rules. It's also easy to enforce.

    Those are bullshit numbers based on biased data. At least the Santa Clara numbers do something to avoid bias.

    They’re not biased. If anything, the confirmed infection rate would be biased downward early because of the limited number of test kits. You can’t confirm what you can’t test.

    As more test kits become available, you are able to keep up with demand, as more people who both want and need a test are able to get one.

    If anything, the new Santa Clara study suggests the infection rate HASN’T gone down in the area, in which case please explain why has the confirmed infection case load has leveled off?

    Interestingly, Andrew Cuomo is gradually coming around to the iSteve idea from February: mask everybody. His literal words a few days ago were “if you cannot practice social distancing, wear a mask.” He is VERY close to realizing what the Taiwanese and Koreans already know: masking is social distancing,

    Masks are now mandatory in most Bay Area counties. Santa Clara County is still an exception, but I bet not for long.

    But since, as you admit, masks are just another form of social distancing, what’s your point of pooh-poohing the effectiveness of social distancing measures at the same time you laud wearing masks? I was responding to someone who claimed that lockdowns don’t work at all and in fact might increase the spread of the virus among families. That seems insane to me, but that’s what he said.

    • Replies: @TomSchmidt
    I don't Pooh-Pooh that social distancing has reduced transmission. Anyone who thinks it has increased transmission might be short-term right but must be long-term wrong. In Italy, houses with people with the Black Death in them were bricked up. Presumably everyone in them subsequently got the disease, but they did not have the ability to spread it through "mal aria," bad air. Of course, we now know Black Death is typically spread by flea bites, but it's airborne form, pneumonic plague, was, ive read, 100% fatal.

    Objections are to two things: 1) the advocates of lockdowns are rapidly lying about the motivation. It was to "flatten the curve," and drive the number of infections below the level that collapses the healthcare system. I suspect that NYC got a full dose of infection before the March 20th lockdown, and the subsequent three weeks were an experiment in what happens when you infect a city. Deaths are high, but the healthcare system has not broken. The curve has been flattened below the level of collapsing the healthcare system; no one died because he needed a ventilator and none was available. Meanwhile, curve flattening has been dropped down the memory hole, and another goal has replaced it: obedience to political fiat seems about the best summary, with Ron Unz bidding us to praise a health bureaucrat for "saving millions" of lives. (And to be fair, if the virus were as fatal as 1%, which it does not appear to be, then millions would have died.)

    2) in typical fashion, the state assumes "equality" amongst the people. Steve, too, when we know that the harrowing effected by the disease falls most heavily upon the old and sick. So a tremendously costly method of preventing the disease from reaching everyone was chosen, to the loud objections of many on this site. I thought Steve's idea of a mask a day per person at a cost of billions was a better way of handling things; it seems the governor of New York, having blown an irreparable multi-billion-dollar hole in his budget and his major city's budget (make no mistake: the value of office properties in NYC, and their tax yield, will not swiftly recover from this), has finally come around to the understanding that he cannot, paterfamilias-like, run everyone's life, or he will soon lack any resources to do so.
  248. anonymous[100] • Disclaimer says:
    @Hebrew National
    If we'd somehow had these results — especially the knowledge that IFR is no worse than flu — in hand six weeks ago then there'd have been no shutdown of anything (except maybe visiting hours at nursing homes).

    I see a quick reopening of the economy now, and within a month new impeachment proceedings centered on an anonymous tip from Uzbekistan that Trump engineered the whole panic.

    These type of skeptical opinions only make sense if it can explain what happened in the worst hit places in Lombardy.

  249. @Jus' Sayin'...
    Some key takeaways from this study and quite a number of others like it seem to be:

    (1) SARS-CoV-2 is a lot more infectious than is generally admitted or accepted.

    (2) Most of those infected with SARS-CoV-2 are either asymptomatic or experience mild symptoms.

    (3) Where SARS-CoV-2 infections are epidemic the prevalence of those who are or have been infected is often (usually?) many orders of magnitude greater than official estimates.

    (4) The virulence of Covid-19 as measured by need for hospitalization and/or case fatality rates is much lower than official estimates and probably less than an order of magnitude greater than similar measures for the flu.

    This leads me to the conclusion that an individual's reaction to a SARS-CoV-2 infection is strongly mediated by both genetics and pre-existing conditions. Most people are lucky and have either no response to a SARS-CoV-2 infection or a very mild one. An unfortunate minority are genetically predisposed to a severe reaction. Pre-existing conditions may amplify an individual's response to a SARS-CoV-2 infection. For all we know now, those who have been infected once can be infected again and this is more than likely also genetically determined,

    If these rather reasonable conclusions are correct then the SARS-CoV-2 virus will continue burning its way through human populations until a significant proportion those predisposed to a severe response to infection are removed from the gene pool and herd immunity emerges. This is basic Darwinian theory. It's been operating for thousands of years.

    And if that is true then all the economic, social, and political chaos created by current, stringent public health measures may be for nought. They may just delay the inevitable culling of the herd that occurs when a new pathogen appears on the scene.

    Some key takeaways from this study and quite a number of others like it seem to be: …

    The authorship of the paper is a blue-ribbon assembly of individuals solely motivated by by the quest for objectivity and truth:

    3 Sol Price School of Public Policy, University of Southern California, Los Angeles CA

    Price faculty are renowned for their …
    engagement with policy leaders at the local, state, national and international levels, and the actionable knowledge resulting from their work

    4 Health Education is Power, Inc., Palo Alto CA

    Website is curiously reticent about the organization’s funding, history, staffing, etc.

    5 The Compliance Resource Group, Inc., Oklahoma City OK

    CRG is the Consulting Subsidiary of the Council of Ethical Organizations and Health Ethics Trust.

    CRG is the Consulting Subsidiary of the Council of Ethical Organizations and Health Ethics Trust.

    6 Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford
    CA

    Our faculty members are … community engaged leaders with transformative impact across many disciplines of science, medicine, and health policy.

    7 Bogan Associates, LLC, Palo Alto CA

    Bogan Associates, LLC has been recognized by Wealth & Finance International magazine’s Wealth & Money Management Awards 2014, being named Best Head Fund Manager – Massachusetts.

  250. @YetAnotherAnon
    "Gross excess deaths are not materializing."

    They are certainly materialising in Europe, although not everywhere.

    http://www.euromomo.eu/

    Pooled mortality estimates from the EuroMOMO network continue to show a marked increase in excess all-cause mortality overall for the participating European countries, coinciding with the current COVID-19 global pandemic. This overall excess mortality is, however, driven by a very substantial excess mortality in some countries, primarily seen in the age group of 65 years and above, but also in the age group of 15-64 years.
    Data from 24 participating countries or regions were included in this week’s pooled analysis of all-cause mortality.
     
    http://www.euromomo.eu/slices/Maps-2020/MAP-2020-14.png

    Also in NY. Deaths in Sept 2001 were 7,010, deaths March 5-Apr 4 were 9,780.

    https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/04/10/upshot/coronavirus-deaths-new-york-city.html

    We know covid is a lot more contagious so it is a quicker burner, essentially a very bad flu season is compressed in to a few weeks rather than a couple of months so a spike in excess deaths should be expected. Similarly herd immunity will build up a lot quicker as more are infected. We also know a large number, probably fifty percent, are asymptomatic, we know this is less dangerous than the flu for young people. We also know it is spread by close contact in confined spaces for a period of time, hence the lockdowns of families with some workplaces open hasn’t really worked, there was a reason the Chinese separated infected individuals from their families. We know the great ventilator scare was nonsense, oxygen is needed, so the healthcare system is able to handle it.

    What we don’t know is why the percentage of people infected on the Diamond Princess and the French aircraft carrier was only around twenty percent. Do some people never get infected, even when exposed to a high viral load in confined spaces?

    • Replies: @Intelligent Dasein

    What we don’t know is why the percentage of people infected on the Diamond Princess and the French aircraft carrier was only around twenty percent. Do some people never get infected, even when exposed to a high viral load in confined spaces?
     
    This is why the serology tests are a gigantic red herring, as I've said about a half dozen times over the past few days. The presence of antibodies does not equal past exposure. A person might have been infected with coronavirus and been asymptomatic (or even symptomatic) and might subsequently test negative for antibodies, either because he never produced antibodies in large amounts or because he produced them and they've already disappeared.

    I don't know why everybody keeps forgetting this. I don't know why I get ridiculed for saying it.

    This means that, in addition to those who test positive for the virus and those who test positive for antibodies, there is also an undefined additive proportion of people who have already been exposed and have passed through this particular hurdle without much evidence. And given the surprising prevalence of positive serology tests in unexpected places, this additive proportion is likely to be quite large. This needs to be taken into account when discussing the bone-headed idea of "herd immunity." THE HERD IS ALREADY IMMUNE!

    The half-assed social distancing measures that we've adopted thus far, which ought rather to be described as Potemkin Social Distancing or Social Distancing Theater, would not have stopped the spread of the virus. Too many common areas still remain open. It is not possible to impose the kind of medical grade prophylaxis upon the entire society that would be sufficient in and of itself to actually prevent contamination.

    The cat is out of the bag, in other words. This virus has already spread around and done what it's going to do. If you haven't gotten sick by now, you probably aren't going to.
  251. @utu
    The result of Stanford study is completely incongruent with Lombardy and New You. Its IFR estimate implies that everybody in Lombardy was infected already twice and that almost everybody in New York state is infected. To reconcile Stanford with Lombardy and New York one must postulate that both Lombardy and New York inflate fatalities by orders of magnitude while Santa Clara engages in Swedish shenanigans:

    From Sweden's Chief Epidemiologist Anders Tegnell
    https://archive.fo/seBhv#selection-981.0-981.230
    April 3
    The Swedes believe that changing how the figures are reported will cut the number of people dying from coronavirus by as much as four fifths, and slash the death rate to well below 1 per cent, perhaps even lower than seasonal flu
     

    More likely NY and Lombardy are inflating their figures, we already know that they are recording deaths with Covid, even when the causes is terminal cancer etc.

    • Replies: @Pincher Martin
    That's not true. NY and Lombardy are both underestimating their number of coronavirus deaths. Unless you believe that small towns in northern Italy are being particularly plagued by terminal cancer for the first time in five years so that it has more than quadrupled their annual mortality rate.

    Nembro (reported on March 31st) -

    158 deaths so far this year.

    35 on average to this date for the previous five years.

    Only 31 coronavirus deaths.

    I guess it's a really, really bad year for terminal cancer in Nembro.

    There's evidence for the same phenomenon in New York, even if it not nearly as stark and obvious.
    , @Frank the Prof
    NY State deaths are run over twice the normal rate:

    https://www.thenewatlantis.com/publications/not-like-the-flu-not-like-car-crashes-not-like

    What are the excess deaths from if it's not from Wuflu?
  252. @Pincher Martin

    I ignore “infection rate” since the data are so subject to selection bias. Deaths are much harder to fake.
     
    Both stats have their problems. We already know, for example, that fully one-third of the possible coronavirus deaths in New York City have been listed by the authorities as only "probable" coronavirus deaths rather than "confirmed" coronavirus deaths. And those are just the ones they've decided to list as probable.

    That's a helluva difference.

    Many Swedish academics are also complaining that their government's data on COVID-19 is not trustworthy. I don't know if their case has merit, but it's interesting to note that many educated Swedes themselves don't fully trust their government on handling the coronavirus.

    The Swedish government has responded that unlike some European countries they are actually counting deaths inside homes as coronavirus deaths if they have reason to believe they are. But who really knows?

    Most locked down, severely. Sweden has locked down, mildly, canceling large gatherings.
     
    You're mistaking government orders for what is actually happening there. I've read the economy is in shatters. Unemployment is near 10% and getting worse. They had to pass a stimulus package in mid-March and already plan to do another one soon again.

    If you think you can have a plague go through your country and the economy will be alright if the government just pretends the plague is not there and let's individuals assume their own level of risk, guess again.

    The Swedish economy is highly integrated, the world economy collapses then they also get hit. I have relatives in Sweden, they are not locked down, shops, bars and restaurants are still open. People who can work from home are doing so, large gatherings are banned, but in no sense is this comparable to what most European countries are doing.

    • Replies: @Pincher Martin
    Sweden has several advantages that other European countries do not have.

    * The highest percentage of any European labor force that was already working from home before the coronavirus hit.

    * Half of Swedish households are single-member households (sad, but apparently true).

    * The least dense population of any large, hard-hit country in European.

    Netherlands - 521 per square kilometer.

    England (U.K.) - 424

    Belgium - 376

    U.K. - 272

    Switzerland - 206

    Italy - 200

    France - 118

    Spain - 92

    European average - 73

    Sweden - 23


    * A sheepish population that follows government "guidelines" as if they were law.

    But Sweden has been hit harder than any of its neighbors by far. Even Germany, which shares borders with several hard-hit countries, doesn't come close.

    And for what purpose? The economy is way down. Unemployment is way up - nearly at 10%. And if you think you save the economy by keeping restaurants and bars open, think again. Most restaurants will not survive if their business is down 30%. I doubt Sweden is much different in this regard than the rest of the world.

  253. Quality posts is the important to invite the visitors to pay a visit the website,
    that’s what this web site is providing.

    • Replies: @Dissident
    Wow, straight-up commercial spam! This may be the first I've seen that anywhere on Unz. A sign of hitting the big-time, perhaps.
  254. @res

    The author assumes a two-week lag between infection and death
     
    Why do people (you and Ron here) keep saying this? From the Stanford Santa Clara County paper (emphasis mine):

    We can use our prevalence estimates to approximate the infection fatality rate from COVID-19 in Santa Clara County. As of April 10, 2020, 50 people have died of COVID-19 in the County, with an average increase of 6% daily in the number of deaths. If our estimates of 48,000-81,000 infections represent the cumulative total on April 1, and we project deaths to April 22 (a 3 week lag from time of infection to death22), we estimate about 100 deaths in the county. A hundred deaths out of 48,000-81,000 infections corresponds to an infection fatality rate of 0.12-0.2%. If antibodies take longer than 3 days to appear, if the average duration from case identification to death is less than 3 weeks, or if the epidemic wave has peaked and growth in deaths is less than 6% daily, then the infection fatality rate would be lower. These straightforward estimations of infection fatality rate fail to account for age structure and changing treatment approaches to COVID-19. Nevertheless, our prevalence estimates can be used to update existing fatality rates given the large upwards revision of under-ascertainment.
     
    P.S. Figured it out. Steve also quoted a WSJ oped which used the two week figure to estimate an IFR of 0.01%. That estimate deserves your scorn. But that's not the paper.

    Steve also quoted a WSJ oped which used the two week figure to estimate an IFR of 0.01%. That estimate deserves your scorn. But that’s not the paper.

    Yes, I assumed that the lead author, Eran Bendavid, would use the same estimate in the WSJ oped that he used in his paper. Silly me to assume consistency.

    In any case, the other estimate of 3 weeks is likewise wrong. Currently, the lag time is 4 weeks, but that’s only because most infections have occurred over the past month. As time goes on, the lag time will steadily lengthen. This is because COVID-19 is not like the seasonal flu. It doesn’t simply affect the lungs, it causes damage to other body organs, notably the heart and the liver.

    Let’s suppose that the virus disappears from the earth tomorrow. People will continue to die, and the final death toll will be much greater than the current one. In this, it’s quite different from the seasonal flu.

    • Replies: @res

    Silly me to assume consistency.
     
    What was silly was critiquing the paper apparently without having made an effort to read and understand it.

    I thought this article provided a good criticism of the paper.
    https://medium.com/@balajis/peer-review-of-covid-19-antibody-seroprevalence-in-santa-clara-county-california-1f6382258c25

    Their bullets:
    1. The False Positive Rate of the Test is High
    2. Were Participants Enriched for COVID-19 Cases?
    3. The Study Would Imply Faster Spread than Past Pandemics
    Conclusion of that article after the MORE.

    I would be interested in any other good assessments of the merits of this paper people have seen.
    Hint: Unless tweets contain a reference they generally aren't useful criticisms.

    In any case, the other estimate of 3 weeks is likewise wrong. Currently, the lag time is 4 weeks, but that’s only because most infections have occurred over the past month. As time goes on, the lag time will steadily lengthen
     
    Apparent lag time lengthening is a natural consequence of gathering the data over time. For example, the way the Diamond Princess deaths have continued to trickle in.

    Do you have a reference for that 4 week lag time estimate? What would be useful is a distribution which would let us estimate "what % of deaths have occurred by 2/3/4 weeks?"

    Let’s suppose that the virus disappears from the earth tomorrow. People will continue to die, and the final death toll will be much greater than the current one. In this, it’s quite different from the seasonal flu.
     
    Not sure what this means. It sounds like an attempt at a highbrow way of saying "everyone dies eventually."


    4. Conclusion

    To summarize, there are three broad reasons why I am skeptical of this study’s claims.

    First, the false positive rate may be high enough to generate many of the reported 50 positives out of 3330 samples. Or put another way, we don’t have high confidence in a very low false positive rate, as the 95% confidence interval for the false positive rate is roughly [0%, >1.2%] and the reported positive rate is ~1.5%.

    Second, the study may have enriched for COVID-19 cases by (a) serving as a test-of-last-resort for symptomatic or exposed people who couldn’t get tests elsewhere in the Bay Area and/or (b) allowing said people to recruit other COVID-19 cases to the study in private groups. These mechanisms could also account for a significant chunk of the 50 positives in 3330 samples.

    Third, in order to produce the visible excess mortality numbers that COVID-19 is already piling up in Europe and NYC, the study would imply that COVID-19 is spreading significantly faster than past pandemics like H1N1, many of which had multiple waves and took more than a year to run their course.

    These points may be mistaken. If so, I welcome corrections. And it would be wonderful news as it would imply we were much closer to herd immunity at a lower cost than people thought.

    Alternatively, if these points are correct, we should try to do a second round of serosurveys that (a) aggressively reduces the false positive rate with many controls and possibly multiple independent tests and (b) that uses some form of unbiased recruitment for the serosurvey, potentially similar to jury duty.

    While I disagree with the conclusion of the paper, I want to thank the authors for their hard work and hope that these comments prove useful in future serosurveys.
     
  255. @Polynikes
    Or your misplacing malfeasance. The wrong numbers could easily be NYCs. They’re the outlier. You don’t rely on the outlier.

    . We don’t know if Silicon Valley or New York/Lombardy are the outliers.

    What we do know is that Silicon Valley is youngish and affluent. I’d say their number is the floor. Don’t forget too that whilst IT nerds contrary to public perception are healthy then that’s not true for a whole lot of people elsewhere. It’s obvious by now that obesity is a major risk factor whether directly or indirectly. It also looks like being a smoker is really bad for you. It’s not rocket science but the IFR will be vastly different for different sub-populations. Then it’s up to scientists to combine this in a meaningful way.

  256. @Alexander Turok

    Hey, if you’re not willing to risk generating the revenue that funds these wondrous schemes, why should you benefit from them?
     
    Same reason a Japanese can collect unemployment if he was working next to Fukushima Daiichi and wasn't willing to take the risk to keep generating revenue.

    We tend to want to direct help to people who are in need for no fault of their own. You could point out "hey, the disabled person is asking for aid and the lazy person who doesn't want to work is asking for aid, where's the difference?" There's no hypocrisy in wanting to help one rather than the other. Similarly, I want to help victims of radiation sickness who are blameless and not those who purposely ventured into the irradiated zone. I want to help corona victims who are blameless and not those who acted recklessly and got infected.

    The problem is you equate “acting blamelessly” with taking extreme precaution for safety, with little to no consideration of its economic impact. If it stopped there, I’d be ok. Some would call those folks “smart,” others would consider them “cowards.” But such people also want:
    1. The moral high ground.
    2. Payment from others who continue to work (e.g., cashiers).
    3. Payment from…someone once the economy sort of restarts.

    To me, that is selfishness.

    I have no direct skin in the game. My job and my wife’s job are both safe and I can work remotely. I’m not a social animal, and have multiple risk factors so would socially distance anyway.

  257. @Jake
    Shouldn't the homeless be dying and nearly dying of Covid-19 in huge numbers?

    They have underlying issues, and they do not follow orders; nor do they have common sense.

    Homelesness is good for you. Fresh air, plenty of sunshine, a boost to your immune system. Plenty of cheap booze and food and stuff. No rent, no bills, no taxes.

    • Agree: LondonBob
  258. @Alexander Turok

    the possibility of getting a virus with a fatality rate not much worse than that of the flu
     
    That isn't true.

    Trying to make sure that people can keep their jobs is about as populist as it gets, and trying to force the populace to live like cringing, welfare-dependent bugmen–which you Doomers want–is about as anti-populist as it gets.
     
    I never thought of unemployment benefits as "anti-populist." Maybe you're just saying "populist" when you mean "libertarian." It's a standard liberal and libertarian talking point that any benefits one receives from the government are equivalent to welfare and that you're a "hypocrite" if you support one government program and reject another. I reject that notion completely. To quote my reply to the other commenter:

    You could point out “hey, the disabled person is asking for aid and the lazy person who doesn’t want to work is asking for aid, where’s the difference?” There’s no hypocrisy in wanting to help one rather than the other.
     
    I can't think of anything more anti-populist than the notion that workers should have to brave sickness and death in order to avoid being accused of collecting welfare by the Koch brothers.

    I still can’t tell if you’re a Richard Spencer acolyte or a Bernie Bro, but either way you’re betraying utter ignorance of the way the world works and of the people you claim you want to help. Your smug disdain for “waging” ignores the reality that the vast majority of people live in and have lived in since the dawn of time.

    You appear to believe that the millions of workers who are losing their jobs to hysteria over a bad flu/cold can simply live happily off unemployment indefinitely. They can’t; UE benefits are designed to allow people to scrape by on a temporary basis, not provide a full substitute for lost wages. The working class doesn’t want to be free from all risk of catching this ridiculously overhyped disease; they want to be able to provide for their families, see their friends and relatives, go to church, engage in recreation, and live without having to be dependent on a heartless bureaucracy for a bare subsistence, as you apparently want them to do.

    If anything useful has come out of the Hysteria Pandemic of 2020, it’s the exposure of so many Internet “independent thinkers” as friendless, childless, clueless, cowardly, and selfish Doomers who will believe anything the Establishment tells them as long as it’s based on impressively complex-looking data, and who will throw middle-class and working-class whites under the bus if allows them to feel smart. Tony Martel recently got all his columns on Occidental Dissent deleted for pointing this out, but it’s true nonetheless.

    • Replies: @Alexander Turok

    You appear to believe that the millions of workers who are losing their jobs to hysteria over a bad flu/cold can simply live happily off unemployment indefinitely. They can’t; UE benefits are designed to allow people to scrape by on a temporary basis, not provide a full substitute for lost wages.
     
    UE benefits have been increased. They can be increased even more.

    The working class doesn’t want to be free from all risk of catching this ridiculously overhyped disease; they want to be able to provide for their families, see their friends and relatives, go to church, engage in recreation, and live
     
    I don't know what they want, do you? How? Even granting your point, how much of the working class is fat or smokes? If this group wants X or Y, well, I don't have much faith in their judgment. On this issue, I don't have much respect in general for the opinions of people who can't do math. What’s next, are we going to let anyone have an opinion on civil engineering? Next time your town wants to design a bridge, allow any random person with no engineering knowledge to submit a design and then vote democratically on which to build.

    If anything useful has come out of the Hysteria Pandemic of 2020, it’s the exposure of so many Internet “independent thinkers” as friendless, childless, clueless, cowardly, and selfish Doomers
     
    If anything useful has come out of this, it's the exposure of so many Internet "independent thinkers" as weak-willed whiners. How many of these people were, six months ago, condemning modern society for its "materialism" and "consumerism" and condemning libertarians for elevating money and GDP above all else? How many of them are now saying "oh, who cares if Grandpa dies, I need to buy the latest iPhone, let's open everything back up?"

    who will believe anything the Establishment tells them
     
    I knew about corona long before the establishment did. I told people to stock up on food back on Feb 1:

    https://alexanderturok.wordpress.com/2020/02/01/dont-use-corona-to-signal/

    Just because you can't think for yourself, believing whatever some media outlet be it CNN or Fox says about the world, doesn't mean the same is true for the rest of us.
  259. @Inquiring Mind
    Mr. Unz:

    If Professor Hanson is wrong, state your position. But where do get "scientifically-ignorant (sic -- you don't hyphenate adverbs) Neocon shill" on a raison farmer who writes about ancient Greek wars?

    Where do you get Neocon on a guy who goes around giving speeches "The Case for Trump." Is President Trump a Neocon?

    You need to take a look at yourself if you are an anti-Sweden-ite

    https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=larry+finds+out+his+lawyer+isn%27t+jewish&docid=607986967267708199&mid=6B5ED4C7E4F030FFECAC6B5ED4C7E4F030FFECAC&view=detail&FORM=VIRE

    Where do you get Neocon on a guy who goes around giving speeches “The Case for Trump.” Is President Trump a Neocon?

    Thanks for this, it provides a great example of something I find annoying about Trump supporters. They use these words – neocon, globalist, to mean anyone who opposes Trump. So when you complain about Trump appointing all these neocons, that sounds to them like an oxymoron. When the rest of us use the word, we’re referring to an ideology/worldview:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neoconservatism

    • Agree: Ron Unz
  260. @LondonBob
    We know covid is a lot more contagious so it is a quicker burner, essentially a very bad flu season is compressed in to a few weeks rather than a couple of months so a spike in excess deaths should be expected. Similarly herd immunity will build up a lot quicker as more are infected. We also know a large number, probably fifty percent, are asymptomatic, we know this is less dangerous than the flu for young people. We also know it is spread by close contact in confined spaces for a period of time, hence the lockdowns of families with some workplaces open hasn't really worked, there was a reason the Chinese separated infected individuals from their families. We know the great ventilator scare was nonsense, oxygen is needed, so the healthcare system is able to handle it.

    What we don't know is why the percentage of people infected on the Diamond Princess and the French aircraft carrier was only around twenty percent. Do some people never get infected, even when exposed to a high viral load in confined spaces?

    What we don’t know is why the percentage of people infected on the Diamond Princess and the French aircraft carrier was only around twenty percent. Do some people never get infected, even when exposed to a high viral load in confined spaces?

    This is why the serology tests are a gigantic red herring, as I’ve said about a half dozen times over the past few days. The presence of antibodies does not equal past exposure. A person might have been infected with coronavirus and been asymptomatic (or even symptomatic) and might subsequently test negative for antibodies, either because he never produced antibodies in large amounts or because he produced them and they’ve already disappeared.

    I don’t know why everybody keeps forgetting this. I don’t know why I get ridiculed for saying it.

    This means that, in addition to those who test positive for the virus and those who test positive for antibodies, there is also an undefined additive proportion of people who have already been exposed and have passed through this particular hurdle without much evidence. And given the surprising prevalence of positive serology tests in unexpected places, this additive proportion is likely to be quite large. This needs to be taken into account when discussing the bone-headed idea of “herd immunity.” THE HERD IS ALREADY IMMUNE!

    The half-assed social distancing measures that we’ve adopted thus far, which ought rather to be described as Potemkin Social Distancing or Social Distancing Theater, would not have stopped the spread of the virus. Too many common areas still remain open. It is not possible to impose the kind of medical grade prophylaxis upon the entire society that would be sufficient in and of itself to actually prevent contamination.

    The cat is out of the bag, in other words. This virus has already spread around and done what it’s going to do. If you haven’t gotten sick by now, you probably aren’t going to.

    • Replies: @res

    The presence of antibodies does not equal past exposure. A person might have been infected with coronavirus and been asymptomatic (or even symptomatic) and might subsequently test negative for antibodies, either because he never produced antibodies in large amounts or because he produced them and they’ve already disappeared.

    I don’t know why everybody keeps forgetting this. I don’t know why I get ridiculed for saying it.
     
    Perhaps because you have never provided any supporting evidence? Or did I miss it?

    I don't doubt there is a range of antibody response. And ANY test is likely to have some proportion of false negatives (as well as false positives, and if you know anything about this topic you understand there is a tradeoff between the two types of error).

    I am skeptical of the exact numbers claimed here (and they appear to be talking about symptomatic cases), but if the tests are anywhere close to that good then you are wrong.
    https://www.contagionlive.com/news/covid19-finally-an-elisa-emerges

    According to published reports, the number of true positives will be almost 100% within 14 days after the onset of symptoms. Remarkably, Abbott claims the false-negative rate is 99% after 14 days. It is unclear whether the test detects only IgG, or both IgG and IgM immunoglobulins.
     
    Please give detailed evidence for why you think there are a large number of people in this category (false negatives from a serology test). And then give an estimate of how big an undercount you think there is due to this. 10%, 2x, 10x, ?
    , @Eagle Eye

    A person might have been infected with coronavirus and ... might subsequently test negative for antibodies, either because he never produced antibodies in large amounts or because he produced them and they’ve already disappeared.
     
    By now we have hundreds of thousands of KNOWN individuals who at some point tested positive for the virus (using PCR tests). It would be an easy matter now to conduct follow-up studies to see how many of the formerly infected subjects (symptomatic and asymptomatic) now have antibodies.

    Antibody tests are easy to administer (finger prick) and can be evaluated immediately. Such antibody studies should not take more than a week to implement in a functioning health system.

    The real question is why we don't already have a number of large, high-quality studies along these lines. Subjects and data were available by mid-March.

  261. @Pincher Martin

    Those are bullshit numbers based on biased data. At least the Santa Clara numbers do something to avoid bias.
     
    They're not biased. If anything, the confirmed infection rate would be biased downward early because of the limited number of test kits. You can't confirm what you can't test.

    As more test kits become available, you are able to keep up with demand, as more people who both want and need a test are able to get one.

    If anything, the new Santa Clara study suggests the infection rate HASN'T gone down in the area, in which case please explain why has the confirmed infection case load has leveled off?

    Interestingly, Andrew Cuomo is gradually coming around to the iSteve idea from February: mask everybody. His literal words a few days ago were “if you cannot practice social distancing, wear a mask.” He is VERY close to realizing what the Taiwanese and Koreans already know: masking is social distancing,
     
    Masks are now mandatory in most Bay Area counties. Santa Clara County is still an exception, but I bet not for long.

    But since, as you admit, masks are just another form of social distancing, what's your point of pooh-poohing the effectiveness of social distancing measures at the same time you laud wearing masks? I was responding to someone who claimed that lockdowns don't work at all and in fact might increase the spread of the virus among families. That seems insane to me, but that's what he said.

    I don’t Pooh-Pooh that social distancing has reduced transmission. Anyone who thinks it has increased transmission might be short-term right but must be long-term wrong. In Italy, houses with people with the Black Death in them were bricked up. Presumably everyone in them subsequently got the disease, but they did not have the ability to spread it through “mal aria,” bad air. Of course, we now know Black Death is typically spread by flea bites, but it’s airborne form, pneumonic plague, was, ive read, 100% fatal.

    Objections are to two things: 1) the advocates of lockdowns are rapidly lying about the motivation. It was to “flatten the curve,” and drive the number of infections below the level that collapses the healthcare system. I suspect that NYC got a full dose of infection before the March 20th lockdown, and the subsequent three weeks were an experiment in what happens when you infect a city. Deaths are high, but the healthcare system has not broken. The curve has been flattened below the level of collapsing the healthcare system; no one died because he needed a ventilator and none was available. Meanwhile, curve flattening has been dropped down the memory hole, and another goal has replaced it: obedience to political fiat seems about the best summary, with Ron Unz bidding us to praise a health bureaucrat for “saving millions” of lives. (And to be fair, if the virus were as fatal as 1%, which it does not appear to be, then millions would have died.)

    2) in typical fashion, the state assumes “equality” amongst the people. Steve, too, when we know that the harrowing effected by the disease falls most heavily upon the old and sick. So a tremendously costly method of preventing the disease from reaching everyone was chosen, to the loud objections of many on this site. I thought Steve’s idea of a mask a day per person at a cost of billions was a better way of handling things; it seems the governor of New York, having blown an irreparable multi-billion-dollar hole in his budget and his major city’s budget (make no mistake: the value of office properties in NYC, and their tax yield, will not swiftly recover from this), has finally come around to the understanding that he cannot, paterfamilias-like, run everyone’s life, or he will soon lack any resources to do so.

    • Replies: @Pincher Martin

    Objections are to two things: 1) the advocates of lockdowns are rapidly lying about the motivation. It was to “flatten the curve,” and drive the number of infections below the level that collapses the healthcare system.
     
    Motivations can change over time for perfectly sensible and honest reasons.

    The advocates of the lockdown who I've read were hoping to keep the virus under control in the U.S. in February and then, once that became impossible in March, hoped to keep the curve flat long enough to buy time for our heath care system.

    That's not dishonesty; that's simply understanding the context in which they are making policy suggestions. If your first defense falls, you move back to your second defense.

    Far more dishonest have been the advocates of letting it rip.

    1) They first said it was no worse than the flu.

    2) Then they said that is was no worse than a bad case of the flu.

    3) Then they said that while it might be worse than a bad case of the flu, it still only killed people who were already old, decrepit and useless.

    4) Now, with many working-age people dying, they are hanging their hats on any piece of good news which comes their way.


    Meanwhile, curve flattening has been dropped down the memory hole, and another goal has replaced it: obedience to political fiat seems about the best summary, with Ron Unz bidding us to praise a health bureaucrat for “saving millions” of lives.
     
    I'm a conservative Republican who lives in Santa Clara County. So believe me when I tell you it hurts me to say this, but California's typically-loony leaders have done a bang-up job of keeping this virus under control. The situation in SF could easily be as bad as New York City, and it's not even close.
  262. @Peter Frost
    Steve also quoted a WSJ oped which used the two week figure to estimate an IFR of 0.01%. That estimate deserves your scorn. But that’s not the paper.

    Yes, I assumed that the lead author, Eran Bendavid, would use the same estimate in the WSJ oped that he used in his paper. Silly me to assume consistency.

    In any case, the other estimate of 3 weeks is likewise wrong. Currently, the lag time is 4 weeks, but that's only because most infections have occurred over the past month. As time goes on, the lag time will steadily lengthen. This is because COVID-19 is not like the seasonal flu. It doesn't simply affect the lungs, it causes damage to other body organs, notably the heart and the liver.

    Let's suppose that the virus disappears from the earth tomorrow. People will continue to die, and the final death toll will be much greater than the current one. In this, it's quite different from the seasonal flu.

    Silly me to assume consistency.

    What was silly was critiquing the paper apparently without having made an effort to read and understand it.

    I thought this article provided a good criticism of the paper.
    https://medium.com/@balajis/peer-review-of-covid-19-antibody-seroprevalence-in-santa-clara-county-california-1f6382258c25

    Their bullets:
    1. The False Positive Rate of the Test is High
    2. Were Participants Enriched for COVID-19 Cases?
    3. The Study Would Imply Faster Spread than Past Pandemics
    Conclusion of that article after the MORE.

    I would be interested in any other good assessments of the merits of this paper people have seen.
    Hint: Unless tweets contain a reference they generally aren’t useful criticisms.

    In any case, the other estimate of 3 weeks is likewise wrong. Currently, the lag time is 4 weeks, but that’s only because most infections have occurred over the past month. As time goes on, the lag time will steadily lengthen

    Apparent lag time lengthening is a natural consequence of gathering the data over time. For example, the way the Diamond Princess deaths have continued to trickle in.

    Do you have a reference for that 4 week lag time estimate? What would be useful is a distribution which would let us estimate “what % of deaths have occurred by 2/3/4 weeks?”

    Let’s suppose that the virus disappears from the earth tomorrow. People will continue to die, and the final death toll will be much greater than the current one. In this, it’s quite different from the seasonal flu.

    Not sure what this means. It sounds like an attempt at a highbrow way of saying “everyone dies eventually.”

    [MORE]

    4. Conclusion

    To summarize, there are three broad reasons why I am skeptical of this study’s claims.

    First, the false positive rate may be high enough to generate many of the reported 50 positives out of 3330 samples. Or put another way, we don’t have high confidence in a very low false positive rate, as the 95% confidence interval for the false positive rate is roughly [0%, >1.2%] and the reported positive rate is ~1.5%.

    Second, the study may have enriched for COVID-19 cases by (a) serving as a test-of-last-resort for symptomatic or exposed people who couldn’t get tests elsewhere in the Bay Area and/or (b) allowing said people to recruit other COVID-19 cases to the study in private groups. These mechanisms could also account for a significant chunk of the 50 positives in 3330 samples.

    Third, in order to produce the visible excess mortality numbers that COVID-19 is already piling up in Europe and NYC, the study would imply that COVID-19 is spreading significantly faster than past pandemics like H1N1, many of which had multiple waves and took more than a year to run their course.

    These points may be mistaken. If so, I welcome corrections. And it would be wonderful news as it would imply we were much closer to herd immunity at a lower cost than people thought.

    Alternatively, if these points are correct, we should try to do a second round of serosurveys that (a) aggressively reduces the false positive rate with many controls and possibly multiple independent tests and (b) that uses some form of unbiased recruitment for the serosurvey, potentially similar to jury duty.

    While I disagree with the conclusion of the paper, I want to thank the authors for their hard work and hope that these comments prove useful in future serosurveys.

    • Replies: @Pincher Martin

    Not sure what this means. It sounds like an attempt at a highbrow way of saying “everyone dies eventually.”
     
    He's saying deaths are always a lagging indicator with COVID-19 - much more so than with the flu.
  263. One thing I have not seen addressed in this analysis (or the commentary appearing around it) is how patients are being treated in Santa Clara county. This comment by danand in the Kaiser Permanente study thread:
    https://www.unz.com/isteve/kaiser-permanente-data-on-hospitalizations/#comment-3845891
    states:

    UK, the couple of people I know who were hospitalized at Silicon Valley Kaiser facilities were treated with the Hydroxychloroquine /Zpack “cocktail”. They survived. Excerpt from an earlier post covering local news clip on another Kaiser patient:

    “Now at Kaiser Fremont, doctors say Tomei has responded to hydroxychloroquine treatments, so they want to send her back to Gateway.”

    Video of news-clip, ~3 min long; “hydroxychloroquine” reference within first few seconds:

    https://abc7news.com/video/embed/?pid=6103855

    If that treatment is common in Santa Clara county and has a significant positive effect (have there been any studies looking at death rates with and without?) that could have a material effect on IFR observed.

  264. @res

    Silly me to assume consistency.
     
    What was silly was critiquing the paper apparently without having made an effort to read and understand it.

    I thought this article provided a good criticism of the paper.
    https://medium.com/@balajis/peer-review-of-covid-19-antibody-seroprevalence-in-santa-clara-county-california-1f6382258c25

    Their bullets:
    1. The False Positive Rate of the Test is High
    2. Were Participants Enriched for COVID-19 Cases?
    3. The Study Would Imply Faster Spread than Past Pandemics
    Conclusion of that article after the MORE.

    I would be interested in any other good assessments of the merits of this paper people have seen.
    Hint: Unless tweets contain a reference they generally aren't useful criticisms.

    In any case, the other estimate of 3 weeks is likewise wrong. Currently, the lag time is 4 weeks, but that’s only because most infections have occurred over the past month. As time goes on, the lag time will steadily lengthen
     
    Apparent lag time lengthening is a natural consequence of gathering the data over time. For example, the way the Diamond Princess deaths have continued to trickle in.

    Do you have a reference for that 4 week lag time estimate? What would be useful is a distribution which would let us estimate "what % of deaths have occurred by 2/3/4 weeks?"

    Let’s suppose that the virus disappears from the earth tomorrow. People will continue to die, and the final death toll will be much greater than the current one. In this, it’s quite different from the seasonal flu.
     
    Not sure what this means. It sounds like an attempt at a highbrow way of saying "everyone dies eventually."


    4. Conclusion

    To summarize, there are three broad reasons why I am skeptical of this study’s claims.

    First, the false positive rate may be high enough to generate many of the reported 50 positives out of 3330 samples. Or put another way, we don’t have high confidence in a very low false positive rate, as the 95% confidence interval for the false positive rate is roughly [0%, >1.2%] and the reported positive rate is ~1.5%.

    Second, the study may have enriched for COVID-19 cases by (a) serving as a test-of-last-resort for symptomatic or exposed people who couldn’t get tests elsewhere in the Bay Area and/or (b) allowing said people to recruit other COVID-19 cases to the study in private groups. These mechanisms could also account for a significant chunk of the 50 positives in 3330 samples.

    Third, in order to produce the visible excess mortality numbers that COVID-19 is already piling up in Europe and NYC, the study would imply that COVID-19 is spreading significantly faster than past pandemics like H1N1, many of which had multiple waves and took more than a year to run their course.

    These points may be mistaken. If so, I welcome corrections. And it would be wonderful news as it would imply we were much closer to herd immunity at a lower cost than people thought.

    Alternatively, if these points are correct, we should try to do a second round of serosurveys that (a) aggressively reduces the false positive rate with many controls and possibly multiple independent tests and (b) that uses some form of unbiased recruitment for the serosurvey, potentially similar to jury duty.

    While I disagree with the conclusion of the paper, I want to thank the authors for their hard work and hope that these comments prove useful in future serosurveys.
     

    Not sure what this means. It sounds like an attempt at a highbrow way of saying “everyone dies eventually.”

    He’s saying deaths are always a lagging indicator with COVID-19 – much more so than with the flu.

    • Replies: @res
    Thanks. Deaths are always a lagging indicator for disease so what is relevant is the flu comparison. Do we have good data for that comparison? (these conversations are so much better with references supporting one's points)

    I'm having trouble finding quantitative data for infection-death time distribution for seasonal flu, but here is a similar complaint concerning the 2009 H1N1 flu:
    https://www.cmaj.ca/content/182/2/131

    Early in an epidemic, the case-fatality rate may be underestimated because of the temporal lag between onset of infection and death; the delay between initial identification of a new case and death may lead to an apparent increase in deaths several weeks into an epidemic that is an artifact of the natural history of the disease.
     
    Figure 3 (text just above) shows the incubation period with a mean of 4.3 days. I don't see any infection-death estimate (there were only 10 deaths). Figure 4 shows symptoms duration with a mean of 9.3 days and a 95%CI of 2.6-24.2 days.
  265. @Pincher Martin

    Not sure what this means. It sounds like an attempt at a highbrow way of saying “everyone dies eventually.”
     
    He's saying deaths are always a lagging indicator with COVID-19 - much more so than with the flu.

    Thanks. Deaths are always a lagging indicator for disease so what is relevant is the flu comparison. Do we have good data for that comparison? (these conversations are so much better with references supporting one’s points)

    I’m having trouble finding quantitative data for infection-death time distribution for seasonal flu, but here is a similar complaint concerning the 2009 H1N1 flu:
    https://www.cmaj.ca/content/182/2/131

    Early in an epidemic, the case-fatality rate may be underestimated because of the temporal lag between onset of infection and death; the delay between initial identification of a new case and death may lead to an apparent increase in deaths several weeks into an epidemic that is an artifact of the natural history of the disease.

    Figure 3 (text just above) shows the incubation period with a mean of 4.3 days. I don’t see any infection-death estimate (there were only 10 deaths). Figure 4 shows symptoms duration with a mean of 9.3 days and a 95%CI of 2.6-24.2 days.

    • Replies: @Pincher Martin

    Thanks. Deaths are always a lagging indicator for disease so what is relevant is the flu comparison. Do we have good data for that comparison? (these conversations are so much better with references supporting one’s points)
     
    I don't know the answer to that question. I've always assumed so, since that seems to be the consensus among the informed people I've read, but I've seen no comparison with hard data.

    However, I wasn't making an argument for it. I was merely interpreting Frost's point.
  266. @res
    Thanks. Deaths are always a lagging indicator for disease so what is relevant is the flu comparison. Do we have good data for that comparison? (these conversations are so much better with references supporting one's points)

    I'm having trouble finding quantitative data for infection-death time distribution for seasonal flu, but here is a similar complaint concerning the 2009 H1N1 flu:
    https://www.cmaj.ca/content/182/2/131

    Early in an epidemic, the case-fatality rate may be underestimated because of the temporal lag between onset of infection and death; the delay between initial identification of a new case and death may lead to an apparent increase in deaths several weeks into an epidemic that is an artifact of the natural history of the disease.
     
    Figure 3 (text just above) shows the incubation period with a mean of 4.3 days. I don't see any infection-death estimate (there were only 10 deaths). Figure 4 shows symptoms duration with a mean of 9.3 days and a 95%CI of 2.6-24.2 days.

    Thanks. Deaths are always a lagging indicator for disease so what is relevant is the flu comparison. Do we have good data for that comparison? (these conversations are so much better with references supporting one’s points)

    I don’t know the answer to that question. I’ve always assumed so, since that seems to be the consensus among the informed people I’ve read, but I’ve seen no comparison with hard data.

    However, I wasn’t making an argument for it. I was merely interpreting Frost’s point.

    • Replies: @res

    I’ve always assumed so, since that seems to be the consensus among the informed people I’ve read, but I’ve seen no comparison with hard data.
     
    I hope you can see why I am skeptical about "consensus among the informed people" unaccompanied by hard data. I am mystified by how many smart people are uncritically accepting things like that.

    However, I wasn’t making an argument for it. I was merely interpreting Frost’s point.
     
    Understood. I hope my comment before reflected my realization that that was likely. Thanks again.

    P.S. I am becoming rather frustrated by these COVID-19 conversations. Seeing both Ron Unz and Peter Frost (two people I consider quite knowledgeable and thoughtful) make the same careless mistake in this thread exceeded my patience. I just wish someone would engage with what I consider more interesting points. Like comment 262 about how treatment protocols might affect fatality rates for Santa Clara county. I think that is an important consideration for interpreting the results from this paper.
  267. @LondonBob
    More likely NY and Lombardy are inflating their figures, we already know that they are recording deaths with Covid, even when the causes is terminal cancer etc.

    That’s not true. NY and Lombardy are both underestimating their number of coronavirus deaths. Unless you believe that small towns in northern Italy are being particularly plagued by terminal cancer for the first time in five years so that it has more than quadrupled their annual mortality rate.

    Nembro (reported on March 31st) –

    158 deaths so far this year.

    35 on average to this date for the previous five years.

    Only 31 coronavirus deaths.

    I guess it’s a really, really bad year for terminal cancer in Nembro.

    There’s evidence for the same phenomenon in New York, even if it not nearly as stark and obvious.

    • Replies: @Negrolphin Pool
    Any idea how many standard deviations from the mean 158 is?
  268. @LondonBob
    The Swedish economy is highly integrated, the world economy collapses then they also get hit. I have relatives in Sweden, they are not locked down, shops, bars and restaurants are still open. People who can work from home are doing so, large gatherings are banned, but in no sense is this comparable to what most European countries are doing.

    Sweden has several advantages that other European countries do not have.

    * The highest percentage of any European labor force that was already working from home before the coronavirus hit.

    * Half of Swedish households are single-member households (sad, but apparently true).

    * The least dense population of any large, hard-hit country in European.

    Netherlands – 521 per square kilometer.

    England (U.K.) – 424

    Belgium – 376

    U.K. – 272

    Switzerland – 206

    Italy – 200

    France – 118

    Spain – 92

    European average – 73

    Sweden – 23

    * A sheepish population that follows government “guidelines” as if they were law.

    But Sweden has been hit harder than any of its neighbors by far. Even Germany, which shares borders with several hard-hit countries, doesn’t come close.

    And for what purpose? The economy is way down. Unemployment is way up – nearly at 10%. And if you think you save the economy by keeping restaurants and bars open, think again. Most restaurants will not survive if their business is down 30%. I doubt Sweden is much different in this regard than the rest of the world.

    • Replies: @utu
    Isolation and atomization is a big part of Swedish social model that has been under construction for years. It is based on the ideology of 'statist individualism'. There was 2015 documentary "The Swedish Theory of Love" that is worth watching.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Swedish_Theory_of_Love
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n12Z9gKbI6Y
    , @LondonBob
    A significant proportion of the Swedish population lives in Stockholm, Gothenburg and Malmo. The others live in small towns and hamlets, hardly anyone lives in the vast north area of the country, essentially the Swedish Siberia. So Sweden is really a combination of very low density and high density.

    There really isn't much evidence that lockdowns have made much difference, as those Israeli scientists showed. The Chinese lockdown was similar to the Spanish, French or Italian, but the Chinese realised to be actually effective they had to separate the infected and potentially infected from everyone else and housed them away from their families, no one in Europe has done this, unlike the Orientals. In reality I expect the virus quickly takes the low hanging fruit and, combined with rising immunity, burns itself out.

  269. @LondonBob
    More likely NY and Lombardy are inflating their figures, we already know that they are recording deaths with Covid, even when the causes is terminal cancer etc.

    NY State deaths are run over twice the normal rate:

    https://www.thenewatlantis.com/publications/not-like-the-flu-not-like-car-crashes-not-like

    What are the excess deaths from if it’s not from Wuflu?

  270. @Intelligent Dasein

    What we don’t know is why the percentage of people infected on the Diamond Princess and the French aircraft carrier was only around twenty percent. Do some people never get infected, even when exposed to a high viral load in confined spaces?
     
    This is why the serology tests are a gigantic red herring, as I've said about a half dozen times over the past few days. The presence of antibodies does not equal past exposure. A person might have been infected with coronavirus and been asymptomatic (or even symptomatic) and might subsequently test negative for antibodies, either because he never produced antibodies in large amounts or because he produced them and they've already disappeared.

    I don't know why everybody keeps forgetting this. I don't know why I get ridiculed for saying it.

    This means that, in addition to those who test positive for the virus and those who test positive for antibodies, there is also an undefined additive proportion of people who have already been exposed and have passed through this particular hurdle without much evidence. And given the surprising prevalence of positive serology tests in unexpected places, this additive proportion is likely to be quite large. This needs to be taken into account when discussing the bone-headed idea of "herd immunity." THE HERD IS ALREADY IMMUNE!

    The half-assed social distancing measures that we've adopted thus far, which ought rather to be described as Potemkin Social Distancing or Social Distancing Theater, would not have stopped the spread of the virus. Too many common areas still remain open. It is not possible to impose the kind of medical grade prophylaxis upon the entire society that would be sufficient in and of itself to actually prevent contamination.

    The cat is out of the bag, in other words. This virus has already spread around and done what it's going to do. If you haven't gotten sick by now, you probably aren't going to.

    The presence of antibodies does not equal past exposure. A person might have been infected with coronavirus and been asymptomatic (or even symptomatic) and might subsequently test negative for antibodies, either because he never produced antibodies in large amounts or because he produced them and they’ve already disappeared.

    I don’t know why everybody keeps forgetting this. I don’t know why I get ridiculed for saying it.

    Perhaps because you have never provided any supporting evidence? Or did I miss it?

    I don’t doubt there is a range of antibody response. And ANY test is likely to have some proportion of false negatives (as well as false positives, and if you know anything about this topic you understand there is a tradeoff between the two types of error).

    I am skeptical of the exact numbers claimed here (and they appear to be talking about symptomatic cases), but if the tests are anywhere close to that good then you are wrong.
    https://www.contagionlive.com/news/covid19-finally-an-elisa-emerges

    According to published reports, the number of true positives will be almost 100% within 14 days after the onset of symptoms. Remarkably, Abbott claims the false-negative rate is 99% after 14 days. It is unclear whether the test detects only IgG, or both IgG and IgM immunoglobulins.

    Please give detailed evidence for why you think there are a large number of people in this category (false negatives from a serology test). And then give an estimate of how big an undercount you think there is due to this. 10%, 2x, 10x, ?

    • Replies: @Intelligent Dasein
    No, no. It's not a false negative from a serology test. It's a true negative from a serology test.
    , @Travis
    https://www.businessinsider.com/study-recovered-coronavirus-patients-antibodies-2020-4

    6% of recovered patients in one study didn't develop antibodies at all. These patients were actually hospitalized CV patients and they never produced any antibodies.

    if 6% of hospitalized CV patients produced zero antibodies then we could assume many of those with CV who have mild symptoms , or no symptoms, probably have zero antibodies

    Would not be strange if 10% of those with mild or no symptoms did not produce antibodies. If your primary immune system is strong enough to defeat CV your body will not have the need to produce antibodies. This could be the reason young people in the study produced less antibodies. Of those without any antibodies 90% of them were under the age of 40
  271. @Pincher Martin

    Thanks. Deaths are always a lagging indicator for disease so what is relevant is the flu comparison. Do we have good data for that comparison? (these conversations are so much better with references supporting one’s points)
     
    I don't know the answer to that question. I've always assumed so, since that seems to be the consensus among the informed people I've read, but I've seen no comparison with hard data.

    However, I wasn't making an argument for it. I was merely interpreting Frost's point.

    I’ve always assumed so, since that seems to be the consensus among the informed people I’ve read, but I’ve seen no comparison with hard data.

    I hope you can see why I am skeptical about “consensus among the informed people” unaccompanied by hard data. I am mystified by how many smart people are uncritically accepting things like that.

    However, I wasn’t making an argument for it. I was merely interpreting Frost’s point.

    Understood. I hope my comment before reflected my realization that that was likely. Thanks again.

    P.S. I am becoming rather frustrated by these COVID-19 conversations. Seeing both Ron Unz and Peter Frost (two people I consider quite knowledgeable and thoughtful) make the same careless mistake in this thread exceeded my patience. I just wish someone would engage with what I consider more interesting points. Like comment 262 about how treatment protocols might affect fatality rates for Santa Clara county. I think that is an important consideration for interpreting the results from this paper.

    • Replies: @utu

    I am becoming rather frustrated by these COVID-19 conversations. Seeing both Ron Unz and Peter Frost (two people I consider quite knowledgeable and thoughtful) make the same careless mistake in this thread exceeded my patience.
     
    Says who? The same guy who wasted lots of energy and space arguing the the infection-to-death time was two weeks and not three weeks as Ron Unz assumed in his rough estimations.. Kaiser Permanent study now shows it is three week + six days.

    https://www.unz.com/isteve/kaiser-permanente-data-on-hospitalizations/#comment-3845777
  272. Incidentally, there’s a long piece in this morning’s NYT Sunday Magazine by an ER doctor in NYC:

    https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/14/magazine/coronavirus-er-doctor-diary-new-york-city.html

    What do the Flu Hoaxers think about this? Is she a liar? Is everyone mentioned a “crisis actor”? It really doesn’t sound like “the Flu” to me…

    • Replies: @vhrm

    What do the Flu Hoaxers think about this? Is she a liar? Is everyone mentioned a “crisis actor”? It really doesn’t sound like “the Flu” to me…
     
    First, I'm not a hoaxer.
    On to the article, it is definitely moving and I'm glad that she wrote it, but a close reading shows that most of the "striking" events described are 2nd hand or in people's heads.

    Overall your could title this "New York doctor gets stressed to the limit by what she hears from her Italian friends."

    The first quarter is just about Italy.

    The second quarter is about decisions she and her colleagues MIGHT have to make.
    The third quarter more of the same. But they're sad that people are dying.
    The fourth is how the 2nd hospital has plenty of room... but for some reason the nurses skipped out so people aren't attached to oxygen and also sitting in their own waste(?). I don't even know what that's about (she doesn't say WHY there are no nurses. There's an implication that they're out sick, but she doesn't say why. Like with the cops and careers in shine nursing homes i wonder how many were sick and how many were afraid.

    From her first hand experiences she related the only "bad" thing that sticks out is that they had to reuse their n95s.

    AFAICT at no time does she say that she or her direct colleagues had to ration care.

    Including:


    A man in his late 80s is sent in from a nursing home with a fever, cough and diarrhea. He is my first patient who is most likely Covid-positive; I can’t know for sure, because tests are taking up to 24 hours to come back in our internal lab. Although the man is designated D.N.R./D.N.I. — “do not resuscitate” and “do not intubate,” which instruct us not to pursue aggressive interventions like electric shocks and breathing tubes — his family, with death now looming, reverses his no-resuscitation order and decides, instead, that he should receive even the most extraordinary lifesaving maneuvers. The man hasn’t walked in years; he has advanced dementia and was unable to talk even before this most recent illness.
     
    This was from early on... and guess what? she intubated the guy. (this was really on, weeks later and battle scarred she wonders if she shouldn't have. Of course it's moot since they never did run out of ventilators.

    Clearly hey hospitals were hard hit but notice she had regular time off, including several days in a row at some point.

    A lot of what she writes about is the same fear and anxiety everyone else had and amplified by her social networks. (e.g. "a colleague texted that her residence class mate has been hospitalized")

    It's understandable that being exposed to so many infected people day in and day out the anxiety would be especially strong. I don't know how I'd deal with it, and I'm glad i don't have to.

    But the objective things she describes are "not that bad".

    , @Johnny Rico
    Ron, with all due respect, I think you need to step back and meditate a little on this whole "hoaxer" thing.

    This really is not a black-and-white issue.

    The vast majority of readers here are able to take what these "hoaxers" say with a grain of salt at the least.

    There was also an interview on 60 Minutes last week with a New York City emergency room doctor. The guy was almost incoherent with exhaustion.

    Nobody is doubting what these people are saying. But it would be like interviewing a captain in the Anzio beachhead regarding what WWII was about.

    These interviews and arguments are missing the forest for the trees. Cliche.

    There were protests at several State capitols this weekend to lift the lockdown.

    There are bigger issues. Are we seeing the seeds of a French Revolution type upheaval?

    20 percent of the population is the United States which includes New York has a "confirmed" infection rate averaging about 6 per thousand residents. NYC is maybe 20 per thousand.

    The other 80 percent of the United States which includes California and Washington State has a confirmed infection rate under 1.5 per thousand, at least 4 times less than the hotspots.

    Everybody knows somebody that knows somebody who has died, and now almost everybody knows somebody who was sick. But the vast majority have zero observations of a plague.

    But they do have daily observation of the effects of the lockdown.

    The cognitive dissonance only builds.

    When we compare this thing to "the normal flu" it turns out we are comparing a lack of hard testing data to a lack of hard testing data. Our knowledge of past flu seasons it seems is based on the educated guesswork and models of a scientific/medical community that is awkwardly trying to avoid anyone noticing they can't help us.

    How many of the 30-60,000 dead in past flu epidemics were put on ventilators? What we're their ages?

    COVID I was told by a friend currently working on a COVID ward (half the floors in her hospital in Boston are COVID patients) is now the number 2 cause of death. I asked her what number 1 was. She said heart disease.

    I would like to know what the current deathrate for heart-disease is in NYC.

    My friend also says that clerical and other hospital employees have been impressed into moving bodies because there are too many to deal with. And I have no reason to doubt this. But is this anecdotal or is it a widespread, continuing issue?

    You have highlighted the fact that even in NYC the healthcare system has not actually been overwhelmed. But I think you jump too fast to the conclusion that it would have been without lockdown orders. Maybe the lockdown inhibited the supply-system and transport system enough or in some ways we don't understand yet that exacerbated the problem. History frequently sees things that we were oblivious to at the time.

    I personally don't think Sweden can be used as an example for anything definitive because of its unique characteristics and its small population and population density. It also doesn't sport numbers that are orders of magnitude different from other similarly sized regions. But it is a bit of an outlier so we need to be honest and take a hard look at successes and failures across the board.
  273. @Pincher Martin

    I ignore “infection rate” since the data are so subject to selection bias. Deaths are much harder to fake.
     
    Both stats have their problems. We already know, for example, that fully one-third of the possible coronavirus deaths in New York City have been listed by the authorities as only "probable" coronavirus deaths rather than "confirmed" coronavirus deaths. And those are just the ones they've decided to list as probable.

    That's a helluva difference.

    Many Swedish academics are also complaining that their government's data on COVID-19 is not trustworthy. I don't know if their case has merit, but it's interesting to note that many educated Swedes themselves don't fully trust their government on handling the coronavirus.

    The Swedish government has responded that unlike some European countries they are actually counting deaths inside homes as coronavirus deaths if they have reason to believe they are. But who really knows?

    Most locked down, severely. Sweden has locked down, mildly, canceling large gatherings.
     
    You're mistaking government orders for what is actually happening there. I've read the economy is in shatters. Unemployment is near 10% and getting worse. They had to pass a stimulus package in mid-March and already plan to do another one soon again.

    If you think you can have a plague go through your country and the economy will be alright if the government just pretends the plague is not there and let's individuals assume their own level of risk, guess again.

    Both stats have their problems. We already know, for example, that fully one-third of the possible coronavirus deaths in New York City have been listed by the authorities as only “probable” coronavirus deaths rather than “confirmed” coronavirus deaths. And those are just the ones they’ve decided to list as probable.

    Yes, that’s why I trust total deaths more than anything. I guess I did not make that clear. For the euromomo data, you can clearly see a spike in some countries, including Sweden, of recent vintage. Now, it’s possible that that March spike was caused by the flu, but that’s not when the flu normally peaks; I assume that those excess deaths are COVID.

    NYC expects about 4500 deaths monthly, probably about 4700 in Winter and summer and fewer in fall and spring. I think it’s fair to assign all the deaths over 4500 or so to COVID. To quote from one article:
    “That comes out to a projected total of 5155.2 deaths expected for New York City from March 11-April 13, 2020. The reality was 18,551 deaths.” I’d call that a little over 13,000 deaths chalked up to the virus.

    That’s a lot of deaths; Spanish Flu killed 33k/5.6MM, equivalent to about 52,000 deaths in the city at present size. In other words, the virus has killed 1/4 the number of Spanish flu in one month, while that took 14 months. I don’t know how it compares to 1957 or 1968 and those pandemics. Of course, if the virus takes 3 weeks from infection to killing someone (a topic of debate around here), then the people dying from April 9-13 were the ones infected after the lockdown in the city; what you see from March 11-April 8 is essentially what the virus could do in a non-locked-down populace. Deaths after April 9 must almost completely be post-lockdown-infection deaths.

    If the infection fatality rate is 1%, then 1.3MM people int he city must have had the virus already. If below that, as in Santa Clara, then more must have had it. It cannot be a rate of .1% as in Santa Clara, since that would require 1.5x the population of the city.

    I think it’s critical to run a randomized population survey to get closer at the truth. If only 15% of New Yorkers have the antibodies, then there’s a huge problem.

    The other possibility is that, having been given free rein in the city until March 20th, the virus found its way to a lot of the possible killable people. If so, then we might not see a death spike back on loosening.

    I don’t know. I do know that I won’t be traveling in the city without a mask for a while, at least until I personally get an antibody test. I suspect the same will be true of anyone with any sense.

  274. Anonymous[341] • Disclaimer says:
    @Anon
    Know your place, HBD nerd. How does it feel to know that those fat middle Americans are morally superior to you in every way? Oh well, at least you have your HBD blogs and your $10,000 a month apartment.

    HBD is over and it got replaced by right-wing populism in 2016 so deal with it.

    “How does it feel to know that those fat middle Americans are morally superior to you in every way?”

    Why, because they believe in a 3000 year old book of fiction most haven’t even bothered to read? Or is there some other “morality” that they have and I don’t?

    “got replaced by right-wing populism in 2016 so deal with it.”

    By right-wing populism you mean the neolib/neocon/neocuck system with a loudmouth New Yorker as a figurehead to rile up the proles.

  275. Some of these findings are difficult to reconcile. The Santa Clara website says that it has tested 18,336 people, of which 1,871, 10.2 percent, have tested positive. This is a relatively low positive rate, suggesting that the criteria the county is using to test people are markedly less stringent than many other locations. Taken alone, it would also tend to suggest that the number of known cases, at least for symptomatic people, is probably quite accurate because such a wide testing net has been cast.

    Still, the site says that testing availability is limited. It is probably safe to assume that testing is therefore limited to those either showing noticeable symptoms or who have been exposed to known cases. This is especially true given the orders elsewhere in California to cease testing unless it would be likely to change the treatment course.

    The paper suggests that around 3 percent of Santa Clara’s population is already infected. If a county’s population is 1,000 people and 3 percent are infected, then 30 people have it.

    There are many sources, often badly conflicting, that estimate the number of asymptomatic Wu flu carriers. But the sources available indicate asymptomatic carriers are certainly no higher than 80 percent of all those infected.

    Let’s assume that 50 percent of the 30 infected people in the above example are asymptomatic. We assume that all who were tested in Santa Clara’s official figures suffered from bad enough symptoms that they were willing to subject themselves to an unpleasant experience to quell their angst. 18k tests is a big number, so a 10 percent positive rate is probably a roughly accurate picture of how frequently people with worrisome symptoms will test positive for Covid 19 in Santa Clara*, at least currently.

    This implies, then, that a full 150 people, 10 times the number who actually have it, out of the hypothetical community of 1,000 are sick enough that they are seriously worried that they may have Covid 19. That’s 15 percent of the population. I don’t live in Santa Clara. Does that jive with facts on the ground? Does everyone who lives there personally know dozens of people who currently believe they have it? If 15 percent of everyone in a given location are currently suffering from Covid-19-like symptoms, that local outbreak would probably be making national headlines. But that doesn’t seem to be the case.

    And if only 10 percent of those infected are asymptomatic, leaving 27 of the 30 infected having symptoms, then 27 percent of the population is going to be suffering from red-flag Covid-19 symptoms. That kind of population-wide deluge of plague symptoms would likely spur flashing-neon hysteria.

    What is going on then? There must be some other virulent epidemic raging throughout Santa Clara if 3 percent of the population is Covid-19 positive yet 90 percent of those with symptoms notable enough to get tested still don’t have it. Maybe this can be explained by data being collected at different times or otherwise being unreliable. But it should be explained.

    And if you even try to apply any of these conclusions to disease hotspots around the country, the results get silly in a hurry. The population of Santa Clara is 1,927,852. This means that a 3 percent infection rate yields 57,836 people currently infected and a mortality rate of .13 percent, equivalent to a very nasty flu season.

    Here we run into problems. If that infection fatality rate were applied to New York City, given today’s death count of 8,893, it would mean that 6,840,769 people had already been infected, 81 percent of the population and well past the point where herd immunity would be dramatically slowing the infection’s spread even in the complete absence of preventive measures. Even with draconian containment measures, we don’t see anything close to that happening. And surely we would hear from or about the >40 percent of NYC residents who are currently suffering or had recently suffered overt symptoms.

    One research team above also postulated that Covid-19 may have a mortality rate as low as .01 percent. Applied to NYC, this would imply that 88 million New Yorkers, or 10 times the city’s actual population, had been infected.

    Another reality check is the fact that Covid-19 cases appear to still be the number-one cause of death across the entire country, still beating out mega-killer heart disease by about 100 daily deaths as of yesterday. The deaths are highly concentrated in just a few regions, with almost 67 percent of the deaths in the top 5 states. Having largely spared most of the country, the China virus is still the number-one cause of death at the national level.

    Heart disease kills about .2 percent of the population each year. In New York, that would mean about 45 people die of heart disease on a typical day. Recently, daily deaths attributed to the China virus have been running around 10 times that figure. And heart disease’s 45 deaths per day is considerably worse than even a bad flu season.

    If the entire US population were infected with Covid-19, and it had a mortality rate of .01 percent, that would mean that 32,800 people would die. It would be killing around 89 people per day on average if it took a year to run through the entire population. But the real daily death count is currently running at well over 20 times that.

    That implies that, at current daily mortality rates, the virus would run through the entire population, achieving a 100 percent infection prevalence, in just 18 days given a flat current-infection curve. With exponential growth, it should achieve a more realistic 70 percent prevalence in perhaps a couple days. So, if the researchers above are correct, then the outbreak should all be over by the beginning of May with continued total lockdowns and perhaps as early as this Tuesday if restrictions were lifted. It’s pure fantasy.

    It also turns out that Wu flu has reportedly already killed over 40k people in the US, 8k more than would be possible with a .01 percent IFR. And its total current infection prevalence is almost certainly not more than 3 percent across the country, considering all of the above issues and that Santa Clara’s roughly 1,000 cases per million people is around the median for all states.

    None of the numbers put forth in the studies in the OP come close to meshing with observed reality unless we postulate that the national figures are maimed beyond recognition.

    There is a lot of uncertainty in the data from all sources. Maybe Santa Clara has been randomly administering most of the 18,000 tests to healthy people. But that doesn’t look like the way to bet.

    For now, I’ll err on the side of listening to the medical professionals who are on the front lines, the near entirety of whom warn us of a genuine menace.

    *Hypochondriacs, randomly testing healthy people or testing asymptomatic critical workers could push the positive rate down. Still, it won’t dramatically affect the conclusions. 10% or 5% of a population having worrisome symptoms would mean virtually every Santa Clara resident would know many people with Covid-19 symptoms.

    • Replies: @Johnny Rico
    You say some very important things, but be careful.

    "18k tests is a big number..."
     
    You say Santa Clara has a population of 2m. Massachusetts has a population 3.5 times bigger. We've done over 160,000 tests. So twice as many tests per capita. We do on average 6k per day or 1% of our population.

    I've ceased to consider whether any of these numbers are big or small because they are the biggest we as a nation have ever done in such a time period.

    The lastest number I read was that we inoculated 2.4 million service members against anthrax in the 80s I think. We have tested about 4 million Americans for Covid. So there's that. Good news?

    To me, it is impossible to compare this present outbreak to past flu seasons because we never did anywhere near this type of testing in any of those flu seasons. Although everybody to this point has kind of taken those numbers for granted, they are complete guesswork and extrapolation using models using very little hard data.

    Numbers like 30-60,000 deaths and 18-26 million infections are not projections they are estimates of the past!!! They might as well be for the Black Death in 1346.

    What we are doing know is literally the best hard data we have ever attempted to collect in real time. And EVERYBODY AGREES it is pretty bad and that it doesn't tell us anything that we really would like to know. It has only accounted for 1% of the population and at most 3% of the population in the real hotspots. And it took 30-40 days to collect.


    "For now, I’ll err on the side of listening to the medical professionals who are on the front lines, the near entirety of whom warn us of a genuine menace."
     
    Yeah. I hear ya. But, again, be careful. This might be like listening to the generals and colonels during the War on Iraq/Afghanistan/Terrrorism. Do you ever recall any of the professionals on the front-line saying anything but that this was a war we had to fight the way we were fighting it?

    You know, that whole Upton Sinclair thing:

    “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it.”

    And remember, sometimes it seems like the only people observing a plague are those medical professionals in certain hotspot hospitals. In 80% of the United States less than 1.5 people out of a thousand have been confirmed infected. Therefore only about 0.15 people out of 1000 or 15 out of 100,000 have been hospitalized and then one tenth of that again have died of COVID-19. So the people in all those communities see almost no effects of the disease itself and yet 35% have lost their income and life has been put on hold as they know it.

    The cognitive dissonance can only grow.

    Nobody in the medical community or at a political level or even at the the level of Ron Unz - who have taken a definite stand on the side of the political decisions that have been made - can EVER admit to having made mistakes, misjudgments, or were wrong in any way. They will always have to maintain that they were trying to save lives and were "erring on the side of..."

    I'm on the fence. I don't know. I'm grateful I live in the United States. But some days things can be really dark.

  276. @Pincher Martin
    That's not true. NY and Lombardy are both underestimating their number of coronavirus deaths. Unless you believe that small towns in northern Italy are being particularly plagued by terminal cancer for the first time in five years so that it has more than quadrupled their annual mortality rate.

    Nembro (reported on March 31st) -

    158 deaths so far this year.

    35 on average to this date for the previous five years.

    Only 31 coronavirus deaths.

    I guess it's a really, really bad year for terminal cancer in Nembro.

    There's evidence for the same phenomenon in New York, even if it not nearly as stark and obvious.

    Any idea how many standard deviations from the mean 158 is?

  277. Seeing both Ron Unz and Peter Frost (two people I consider quite knowledgeable and thoughtful) make the same careless mistake in this thread exceeded my patience.

    It was an honest mistake. I went to Bendavid’s op-ed to get his estimate of the time lag between infection and death. I didn’t think to double-check the estimate he used in his paper.

    I just wish someone would engage with what I consider more interesting points.

    A lot of people here have already made up their minds. And some feel we should let the virus do its work. It will “cull the elderly” and reduce the number of people with permanent health issues.

    Actually, the opposite will happen. When this is over, a higher proportion of people over 50 will have permanent health issues, as a result of COVID-19.

  278. @res

    The presence of antibodies does not equal past exposure. A person might have been infected with coronavirus and been asymptomatic (or even symptomatic) and might subsequently test negative for antibodies, either because he never produced antibodies in large amounts or because he produced them and they’ve already disappeared.

    I don’t know why everybody keeps forgetting this. I don’t know why I get ridiculed for saying it.
     
    Perhaps because you have never provided any supporting evidence? Or did I miss it?

    I don't doubt there is a range of antibody response. And ANY test is likely to have some proportion of false negatives (as well as false positives, and if you know anything about this topic you understand there is a tradeoff between the two types of error).

    I am skeptical of the exact numbers claimed here (and they appear to be talking about symptomatic cases), but if the tests are anywhere close to that good then you are wrong.
    https://www.contagionlive.com/news/covid19-finally-an-elisa-emerges

    According to published reports, the number of true positives will be almost 100% within 14 days after the onset of symptoms. Remarkably, Abbott claims the false-negative rate is 99% after 14 days. It is unclear whether the test detects only IgG, or both IgG and IgM immunoglobulins.
     
    Please give detailed evidence for why you think there are a large number of people in this category (false negatives from a serology test). And then give an estimate of how big an undercount you think there is due to this. 10%, 2x, 10x, ?

    No, no. It’s not a false negative from a serology test. It’s a true negative from a serology test.

    • Replies: @res

    No, no. It’s not a false negative from a serology test. It’s a true negative from a serology test.
     
    There can be legitimately different uses of terminology here. If you claim the test is testing for "has been infected" then the definition I used is correct (this is typically the intent of doing the test). Your definition is the more literal one for "antibody test" (and I would say is the more technically correct).

    An interesting question is whether someone who has been infected with no (or undetectable) antibodies now can be re-infected.

    Practically speaking (which is what I care about here) your clarification leaves these relevant cases.

    Has been infected, has antibody response, tests positive - true positive
    Has been infected, has antibody response, tests negative - false negative
    Has been infected, no antibody response, tests negative - false negative wrt infection, true negative wrt antibodies

    How relatively big do you think those categories are? Data would be very helpful for this discussion.
  279. @res

    I’ve always assumed so, since that seems to be the consensus among the informed people I’ve read, but I’ve seen no comparison with hard data.
     
    I hope you can see why I am skeptical about "consensus among the informed people" unaccompanied by hard data. I am mystified by how many smart people are uncritically accepting things like that.

    However, I wasn’t making an argument for it. I was merely interpreting Frost’s point.
     
    Understood. I hope my comment before reflected my realization that that was likely. Thanks again.

    P.S. I am becoming rather frustrated by these COVID-19 conversations. Seeing both Ron Unz and Peter Frost (two people I consider quite knowledgeable and thoughtful) make the same careless mistake in this thread exceeded my patience. I just wish someone would engage with what I consider more interesting points. Like comment 262 about how treatment protocols might affect fatality rates for Santa Clara county. I think that is an important consideration for interpreting the results from this paper.

    I am becoming rather frustrated by these COVID-19 conversations. Seeing both Ron Unz and Peter Frost (two people I consider quite knowledgeable and thoughtful) make the same careless mistake in this thread exceeded my patience.

    Says who? The same guy who wasted lots of energy and space arguing the the infection-to-death time was two weeks and not three weeks as Ron Unz assumed in his rough estimations.. Kaiser Permanent study now shows it is three week + six days.

    https://www.unz.com/isteve/kaiser-permanente-data-on-hospitalizations/#comment-3845777

    • Replies: @res

    Says who? The same guy who wasted lots of energy and space arguing the the infection-to-death time was two weeks and not three weeks as Ron Unz assumed in his rough estimations..
     
    You are a fine one to be talking about wasting energy and space. You have written 768 comments so far during March and April. I would be happy to compare the relative signal to noise ratio of our respective comments over this period.

    It would help if you accurately represented the point I was arguing. Ron had been citing the 2-3 week estimate then focusing on the three week version. I was noting that there was evidence for the two week side (i.e. should maybe consider somewhere between). The thread following this comment includes the discussion for anyone who would like to judge for themselves. If you read through the exchange you will see a whole three comments from me (some waste of energy and space). You will also notice that Ron seemed to at least take my argument seriously.

    https://www.unz.com/anepigone/americas-coronavirus-peak/#comment-3817321

    Ron, I basically agree with your analysis process (I am less sure about your conclusions). But I think you should consider these points (if you have not already).

    – The infection-mortality period may very well be less than 3 weeks. Kratoklastes and I have some back and forth about this here:
    https://www.unz.com/isteve/uk-r0-supposed-to-have-fallen-from-2-6-to-0-6/#comment-3814967
    He argues for substantially less than two weeks. I disagreed and counterargued for a little longer, but think his points are worth considering.
     
    Back to you.

    Kaiser Permanent study now shows it is three week + six days.

    https://www.unz.com/isteve/kaiser-permanente-data-on-hospitalizations/#comment-3845777
     
    Yes, that is a very interesting result. First though, when a good Bayesian encounters new contradictory data he does not immediately change his estimate to agree with it. He updates his prior based on the relative weight of evidence supporting each position.

    Second, thanks for reemphasizing that point. I suspect that was where Peter Frost got his four week estimate. I had noticed and appreciated your original linked comment but did not internalize it enough.

    Lastly, how to explain the difference with the other results? My best guess is the treatment protocol both helped to reduce the fatality rate and also increased the time until death. I'd be interested in other ideas. The important question is what estimate to use going forward. For me the KP study moves my estimate back to three weeks (or maybe a day or two longer) from thinking it was a little less.
  280. @Ron Unz
    Incidentally, there’s a long piece in this morning’s NYT Sunday Magazine by an ER doctor in NYC:

    https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/14/magazine/coronavirus-er-doctor-diary-new-york-city.html

    What do the Flu Hoaxers think about this? Is she a liar? Is everyone mentioned a “crisis actor”? It really doesn’t sound like “the Flu” to me…

    What do the Flu Hoaxers think about this? Is she a liar? Is everyone mentioned a “crisis actor”? It really doesn’t sound like “the Flu” to me…

    First, I’m not a hoaxer.
    On to the article, it is definitely moving and I’m glad that she wrote it, but a close reading shows that most of the “striking” events described are 2nd hand or in people’s heads.

    Overall your could title this “New York doctor gets stressed to the limit by what she hears from her Italian friends.”

    The first quarter is just about Italy.

    The second quarter is about decisions she and her colleagues MIGHT have to make.
    The third quarter more of the same. But they’re sad that people are dying.
    The fourth is how the 2nd hospital has plenty of room… but for some reason the nurses skipped out so people aren’t attached to oxygen and also sitting in their own waste(?). I don’t even know what that’s about (she doesn’t say WHY there are no nurses. There’s an implication that they’re out sick, but she doesn’t say why. Like with the cops and careers in shine nursing homes i wonder how many were sick and how many were afraid.

    From her first hand experiences she related the only “bad” thing that sticks out is that they had to reuse their n95s.

    AFAICT at no time does she say that she or her direct colleagues had to ration care.

    Including:

    A man in his late 80s is sent in from a nursing home with a fever, cough and diarrhea. He is my first patient who is most likely Covid-positive; I can’t know for sure, because tests are taking up to 24 hours to come back in our internal lab. Although the man is designated D.N.R./D.N.I. — “do not resuscitate” and “do not intubate,” which instruct us not to pursue aggressive interventions like electric shocks and breathing tubes — his family, with death now looming, reverses his no-resuscitation order and decides, instead, that he should receive even the most extraordinary lifesaving maneuvers. The man hasn’t walked in years; he has advanced dementia and was unable to talk even before this most recent illness.

    This was from early on… and guess what? she intubated the guy. (this was really on, weeks later and battle scarred she wonders if she shouldn’t have. Of course it’s moot since they never did run out of ventilators.

    Clearly hey hospitals were hard hit but notice she had regular time off, including several days in a row at some point.

    A lot of what she writes about is the same fear and anxiety everyone else had and amplified by her social networks. (e.g. “a colleague texted that her residence class mate has been hospitalized”)

    It’s understandable that being exposed to so many infected people day in and day out the anxiety would be especially strong. I don’t know how I’d deal with it, and I’m glad i don’t have to.

    But the objective things she describes are “not that bad”.

    • Thanks: Manfred Arcane, res
  281. @Ron Unz
    Incidentally, there’s a long piece in this morning’s NYT Sunday Magazine by an ER doctor in NYC:

    https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/14/magazine/coronavirus-er-doctor-diary-new-york-city.html

    What do the Flu Hoaxers think about this? Is she a liar? Is everyone mentioned a “crisis actor”? It really doesn’t sound like “the Flu” to me…

    Ron, with all due respect, I think you need to step back and meditate a little on this whole “hoaxer” thing.

    This really is not a black-and-white issue.

    The vast majority of readers here are able to take what these “hoaxers” say with a grain of salt at the least.

    There was also an interview on 60 Minutes last week with a New York City emergency room doctor. The guy was almost incoherent with exhaustion.

    Nobody is doubting what these people are saying. But it would be like interviewing a captain in the Anzio beachhead regarding what WWII was about.

    These interviews and arguments are missing the forest for the trees. Cliche.

    There were protests at several State capitols this weekend to lift the lockdown.

    There are bigger issues. Are we seeing the seeds of a French Revolution type upheaval?

    20 percent of the population is the United States which includes New York has a “confirmed” infection rate averaging about 6 per thousand residents. NYC is maybe 20 per thousand.

    The other 80 percent of the United States which includes California and Washington State has a confirmed infection rate under 1.5 per thousand, at least 4 times less than the hotspots.

    Everybody knows somebody that knows somebody who has died, and now almost everybody knows somebody who was sick. But the vast majority have zero observations of a plague.

    But they do have daily observation of the effects of the lockdown.

    The cognitive dissonance only builds.

    When we compare this thing to “the normal flu” it turns out we are comparing a lack of hard testing data to a lack of hard testing data. Our knowledge of past flu seasons it seems is based on the educated guesswork and models of a scientific/medical community that is awkwardly trying to avoid anyone noticing they can’t help us.

    How many of the 30-60,000 dead in past flu epidemics were put on ventilators? What we’re their ages?

    COVID I was told by a friend currently working on a COVID ward (half the floors in her hospital in Boston are COVID patients) is now the number 2 cause of death. I asked her what number 1 was. She said heart disease.

    I would like to know what the current deathrate for heart-disease is in NYC.

    My friend also says that clerical and other hospital employees have been impressed into moving bodies because there are too many to deal with. And I have no reason to doubt this. But is this anecdotal or is it a widespread, continuing issue?

    You have highlighted the fact that even in NYC the healthcare system has not actually been overwhelmed. But I think you jump too fast to the conclusion that it would have been without lockdown orders. Maybe the lockdown inhibited the supply-system and transport system enough or in some ways we don’t understand yet that exacerbated the problem. History frequently sees things that we were oblivious to at the time.

    I personally don’t think Sweden can be used as an example for anything definitive because of its unique characteristics and its small population and population density. It also doesn’t sport numbers that are orders of magnitude different from other similarly sized regions. But it is a bit of an outlier so we need to be honest and take a hard look at successes and failures across the board.

    • Replies: @utu
    "The cognitive dissonance only builds." - This cognitive dissonance is not a true cognitive riddance as it presupposes a cognition. The people who are preparing the French Revolution of Flu Hoaxers Minutemen in Minnesota by rejecting the Anzio experience in New York are not data driven but belief driven. They accumulate data according to their prior confirmation bias. They do not experience any cognitive dissonance, they just believe what they always wanted to believe.
  282. @Intelligent Dasein

    What we don’t know is why the percentage of people infected on the Diamond Princess and the French aircraft carrier was only around twenty percent. Do some people never get infected, even when exposed to a high viral load in confined spaces?
     
    This is why the serology tests are a gigantic red herring, as I've said about a half dozen times over the past few days. The presence of antibodies does not equal past exposure. A person might have been infected with coronavirus and been asymptomatic (or even symptomatic) and might subsequently test negative for antibodies, either because he never produced antibodies in large amounts or because he produced them and they've already disappeared.

    I don't know why everybody keeps forgetting this. I don't know why I get ridiculed for saying it.

    This means that, in addition to those who test positive for the virus and those who test positive for antibodies, there is also an undefined additive proportion of people who have already been exposed and have passed through this particular hurdle without much evidence. And given the surprising prevalence of positive serology tests in unexpected places, this additive proportion is likely to be quite large. This needs to be taken into account when discussing the bone-headed idea of "herd immunity." THE HERD IS ALREADY IMMUNE!

    The half-assed social distancing measures that we've adopted thus far, which ought rather to be described as Potemkin Social Distancing or Social Distancing Theater, would not have stopped the spread of the virus. Too many common areas still remain open. It is not possible to impose the kind of medical grade prophylaxis upon the entire society that would be sufficient in and of itself to actually prevent contamination.

    The cat is out of the bag, in other words. This virus has already spread around and done what it's going to do. If you haven't gotten sick by now, you probably aren't going to.

    A person might have been infected with coronavirus and … might subsequently test negative for antibodies, either because he never produced antibodies in large amounts or because he produced them and they’ve already disappeared.

    By now we have hundreds of thousands of KNOWN individuals who at some point tested positive for the virus (using PCR tests). It would be an easy matter now to conduct follow-up studies to see how many of the formerly infected subjects (symptomatic and asymptomatic) now have antibodies.

    Antibody tests are easy to administer (finger prick) and can be evaluated immediately. Such antibody studies should not take more than a week to implement in a functioning health system.

    The real question is why we don’t already have a number of large, high-quality studies along these lines. Subjects and data were available by mid-March.

    • Agree: Johnny Rico
    • Replies: @Johnny Rico

    "It would be an easy matter now to conduct follow-up studies to see..."
     
    Yes. One would think. However:

    1) Testing 150,000 people a day for the last 30 days seems to be our capacity limit. and that has gotten us to about 1% of the population having been tested. Also, these were people who showed symptoms and were triaged as a requirement before being tested. approximately 25% have tested positive.

    2) So conducting comprehensive follow-up is going to require a certain percentage of that already strained capacity.

    3) Where are the plans for any of this being done? Where is the leadership and where are the healthcare conglomerates and drug companies and universities on this?

    4) Where are Bill Gates and Elon Musk and the other great "thinkers."?

    5) Fauci was talking a couple weeks ago about ramping up anti-body testing. Is this happening? Why not?

    The way I see it, it is either NOT an easy matter or it IS an easy matter but there is some reason it is hasn't already started happening. As you correctly point out.

    It was said by some that we didn't have enough data to justify the lockdown. Now those who husband the lockdown say we don't have enough data to lift the lockdown safely. But nothing is being done to gather that data.

    In the end, I fear, it will be a mob of unemployed peasants who overthrow the lockdown. In many ways, there was no real quarantine that was enforced by the military anyway. It was honor-system social-distancing with no attempt to randomly test people so we can't draw any hard conclusions about efficacy. It is like having a peeing section in a swimming pool. The analogy holds for the entire United States including New York City. Complete clusterfuck. Where anybody on either side of the argument has all the material they need to spin any narrative they want. We will never know.

    , @utu
    What is a greater problem of the tests: false negatives or false positives? Are the false negatives indeed false if some infected people do not develop antibodies or if the presence of the antibodies does not imply immunity?

    https://www.sciencemediacentre.org/expert-reaction-to-unpublished-preliminary-findings-looking-at-the-presence-of-antibodies-to-sars-cov-2-virus-in-residents-of-gangelt-in-germany/
    "...merely having some antibodies does not necessarily prove immunity, as is often casually asserted. We don’t know what the correlates of protection, the measurable signs that someone has immunity to a disease, are for this virus and neither do we know how long any immunity would last."

     

    False positives otoh may lead to too optimistic conclusions that the heard immunity is near or that IFR is so low that there is no reason to worry too much.

    https://www.sciencemediacentre.org/expert-reaction-to-unpublished-preliminary-findings-looking-at-the-presence-of-antibodies-to-sars-cov-2-virus-in-residents-of-gangelt-in-germany/
    "It is important to understand the sensitivity and specificity of the serological test used in the German studies to be sure the test is not picking up antibody to other corona viruses (4 different common cold causing coronaviruses have been isolated in humans during the past years and 3 more serious ones (SARSCoV1 and 2, and MERSCoV)"
     
  283. @Pincher Martin
    Sweden has several advantages that other European countries do not have.

    * The highest percentage of any European labor force that was already working from home before the coronavirus hit.

    * Half of Swedish households are single-member households (sad, but apparently true).

    * The least dense population of any large, hard-hit country in European.

    Netherlands - 521 per square kilometer.

    England (U.K.) - 424

    Belgium - 376

    U.K. - 272

    Switzerland - 206

    Italy - 200

    France - 118

    Spain - 92

    European average - 73

    Sweden - 23


    * A sheepish population that follows government "guidelines" as if they were law.

    But Sweden has been hit harder than any of its neighbors by far. Even Germany, which shares borders with several hard-hit countries, doesn't come close.

    And for what purpose? The economy is way down. Unemployment is way up - nearly at 10%. And if you think you save the economy by keeping restaurants and bars open, think again. Most restaurants will not survive if their business is down 30%. I doubt Sweden is much different in this regard than the rest of the world.

    Isolation and atomization is a big part of Swedish social model that has been under construction for years. It is based on the ideology of ‘statist individualism’. There was 2015 documentary “The Swedish Theory of Love” that is worth watching.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Swedish_Theory_of_Love

  284. @Eagle Eye

    A person might have been infected with coronavirus and ... might subsequently test negative for antibodies, either because he never produced antibodies in large amounts or because he produced them and they’ve already disappeared.
     
    By now we have hundreds of thousands of KNOWN individuals who at some point tested positive for the virus (using PCR tests). It would be an easy matter now to conduct follow-up studies to see how many of the formerly infected subjects (symptomatic and asymptomatic) now have antibodies.

    Antibody tests are easy to administer (finger prick) and can be evaluated immediately. Such antibody studies should not take more than a week to implement in a functioning health system.

    The real question is why we don't already have a number of large, high-quality studies along these lines. Subjects and data were available by mid-March.

    “It would be an easy matter now to conduct follow-up studies to see…”

    Yes. One would think. However:

    1) Testing 150,000 people a day for the last 30 days seems to be our capacity limit. and that has gotten us to about 1% of the population having been tested. Also, these were people who showed symptoms and were triaged as a requirement before being tested. approximately 25% have tested positive.

    2) So conducting comprehensive follow-up is going to require a certain percentage of that already strained capacity.

    3) Where are the plans for any of this being done? Where is the leadership and where are the healthcare conglomerates and drug companies and universities on this?

    4) Where are Bill Gates and Elon Musk and the other great “thinkers.”?

    5) Fauci was talking a couple weeks ago about ramping up anti-body testing. Is this happening? Why not?

    The way I see it, it is either NOT an easy matter or it IS an easy matter but there is some reason it is hasn’t already started happening. As you correctly point out.

    It was said by some that we didn’t have enough data to justify the lockdown. Now those who husband the lockdown say we don’t have enough data to lift the lockdown safely. But nothing is being done to gather that data.

    In the end, I fear, it will be a mob of unemployed peasants who overthrow the lockdown. In many ways, there was no real quarantine that was enforced by the military anyway. It was honor-system social-distancing with no attempt to randomly test people so we can’t draw any hard conclusions about efficacy. It is like having a peeing section in a swimming pool. The analogy holds for the entire United States including New York City. Complete clusterfuck. Where anybody on either side of the argument has all the material they need to spin any narrative they want. We will never know.

  285. Santa Clara study by the Stanford team grossly overestimates the number of infected and leads to unrealistically low estimates of IFR.

    1. False positives are underestimated and not corrected
    2. Non random sample (self selected)
    3. Ignoring age distribution in the sample (” We did not account for age imbalance in our sample”)

    • Replies: @Eagle Eye

    Santa Clara study by the Stanford team grossly overestimates the number of infected and leads to unrealistically low estimates of IFR.
     
    As noted earlier, the Stanford study counts some rather dubious entities among its collaborators/backers.
  286. @Eagle Eye

    A person might have been infected with coronavirus and ... might subsequently test negative for antibodies, either because he never produced antibodies in large amounts or because he produced them and they’ve already disappeared.
     
    By now we have hundreds of thousands of KNOWN individuals who at some point tested positive for the virus (using PCR tests). It would be an easy matter now to conduct follow-up studies to see how many of the formerly infected subjects (symptomatic and asymptomatic) now have antibodies.

    Antibody tests are easy to administer (finger prick) and can be evaluated immediately. Such antibody studies should not take more than a week to implement in a functioning health system.

    The real question is why we don't already have a number of large, high-quality studies along these lines. Subjects and data were available by mid-March.

    What is a greater problem of the tests: false negatives or false positives? Are the false negatives indeed false if some infected people do not develop antibodies or if the presence of the antibodies does not imply immunity?

    https://www.sciencemediacentre.org/expert-reaction-to-unpublished-preliminary-findings-looking-at-the-presence-of-antibodies-to-sars-cov-2-virus-in-residents-of-gangelt-in-germany/
    “…merely having some antibodies does not necessarily prove immunity, as is often casually asserted. We don’t know what the correlates of protection, the measurable signs that someone has immunity to a disease, are for this virus and neither do we know how long any immunity would last.”

    False positives otoh may lead to too optimistic conclusions that the heard immunity is near or that IFR is so low that there is no reason to worry too much.

    https://www.sciencemediacentre.org/expert-reaction-to-unpublished-preliminary-findings-looking-at-the-presence-of-antibodies-to-sars-cov-2-virus-in-residents-of-gangelt-in-germany/
    “It is important to understand the sensitivity and specificity of the serological test used in the German studies to be sure the test is not picking up antibody to other corona viruses (4 different common cold causing coronaviruses have been isolated in humans during the past years and 3 more serious ones (SARSCoV1 and 2, and MERSCoV)”

    • Replies: @Eagle Eye
    Good points. Responses below.

    Are the false negatives indeed false if some infected people do not develop antibodies or if the presence of the antibodies does not imply immunity?
     
    The proof of the pudding is in the eating. Once we have the antibody data, we can continue to monitor the subjects. Let's say we contact 20,000 candidates (spread across a range of demographics) based on past test results (PCR) showing the presence of the COVID-19 virus. This time, the subjects are asked to undergo an antibody test.

    It should be easy to motivate most patients in this group - they know their past PCR test results and will be at least curious to know whether they have developed antibodies. (Of course, there will be disclaimers that antibodies may not confer immunity.)

    With minimal effort we should be able to collect 10,000 antibody test results of previously infected subjects. Viral load (PCR) testing should be re-administered at the same time, and a questionnaire will ask about recent flu-like infections SINCE the time of the previous PCR test. In addition, forward monitoring of pertinent doctor visits and hospitalizations will be arranged, free of charge to the subject.

    With this simple and practicable test design, we get a good initial picture of reinfection risks within, say 2-3 months of the initial infection. In addition, forward tracking of antibody-positive subjects for future COVID-19 infection will generate a much better view of the re-infection risk in different cases within 2-3 months. It is likely that countries such as South Korea, China, and various European countries already have such data (although data manipulation for political, economic and vanity reasons is always a risk).


    False positives otoh may lead to too optimistic conclusions that the heard immunity is near or that IFR is so low that there is no reason to worry too much.
     
    Not correct. The premise is that we are RE-TESTING people with a track record of past active COVID-19 infection to see whether they have developed antibodies. Even a false finding of antibodies where none are present doesn't change the fact that the subjects did test positive for the virus (PCR test) in the past. Even if the antibody test comes out as a false positive, the subject does legitimately belong in the "infected" category for purposes of assessing "herd immunity."

    EFFECT OF NON-SPECIFIC IMMUNE RESPONSES. As others have pointed out, non-specific immune response mechanisms are known to operate without generating antibodies. The question then is how likely is it that a subject who successfully fought off the infection once without developing antibodies will be able to fight it off a second time? And how likely that the second bout with the disease will result in antibodies forming?

  287. @Negrolphin Pool
    Some of these findings are difficult to reconcile. The Santa Clara website says that it has tested 18,336 people, of which 1,871, 10.2 percent, have tested positive. This is a relatively low positive rate, suggesting that the criteria the county is using to test people are markedly less stringent than many other locations. Taken alone, it would also tend to suggest that the number of known cases, at least for symptomatic people, is probably quite accurate because such a wide testing net has been cast.

    Still, the site says that testing availability is limited. It is probably safe to assume that testing is therefore limited to those either showing noticeable symptoms or who have been exposed to known cases. This is especially true given the orders elsewhere in California to cease testing unless it would be likely to change the treatment course.

    The paper suggests that around 3 percent of Santa Clara’s population is already infected. If a county’s population is 1,000 people and 3 percent are infected, then 30 people have it.

    There are many sources, often badly conflicting, that estimate the number of asymptomatic Wu flu carriers. But the sources available indicate asymptomatic carriers are certainly no higher than 80 percent of all those infected.


    Let’s assume that 50 percent of the 30 infected people in the above example are asymptomatic. We assume that all who were tested in Santa Clara’s official figures suffered from bad enough symptoms that they were willing to subject themselves to an unpleasant experience to quell their angst. 18k tests is a big number, so a 10 percent positive rate is probably a roughly accurate picture of how frequently people with worrisome symptoms will test positive for Covid 19 in Santa Clara*, at least currently.


    This implies, then, that a full 150 people, 10 times the number who actually have it, out of the hypothetical community of 1,000 are sick enough that they are seriously worried that they may have Covid 19. That’s 15 percent of the population. I don’t live in Santa Clara. Does that jive with facts on the ground? Does everyone who lives there personally know dozens of people who currently believe they have it? If 15 percent of everyone in a given location are currently suffering from Covid-19-like symptoms, that local outbreak would probably be making national headlines. But that doesn’t seem to be the case.

    And if only 10 percent of those infected are asymptomatic, leaving 27 of the 30 infected having symptoms, then 27 percent of the population is going to be suffering from red-flag Covid-19 symptoms. That kind of population-wide deluge of plague symptoms would likely spur flashing-neon hysteria.

    What is going on then? There must be some other virulent epidemic raging throughout Santa Clara if 3 percent of the population is Covid-19 positive yet 90 percent of those with symptoms notable enough to get tested still don’t have it. Maybe this can be explained by data being collected at different times or otherwise being unreliable. But it should be explained.

    And if you even try to apply any of these conclusions to disease hotspots around the country, the results get silly in a hurry. The population of Santa Clara is 1,927,852. This means that a 3 percent infection rate yields 57,836 people currently infected and a mortality rate of .13 percent, equivalent to a very nasty flu season.

    Here we run into problems. If that infection fatality rate were applied to New York City, given today’s death count of 8,893, it would mean that 6,840,769 people had already been infected, 81 percent of the population and well past the point where herd immunity would be dramatically slowing the infection’s spread even in the complete absence of preventive measures. Even with draconian containment measures, we don’t see anything close to that happening. And surely we would hear from or about the >40 percent of NYC residents who are currently suffering or had recently suffered overt symptoms.

    One research team above also postulated that Covid-19 may have a mortality rate as low as .01 percent. Applied to NYC, this would imply that 88 million New Yorkers, or 10 times the city’s actual population, had been infected.

    Another reality check is the fact that Covid-19 cases appear to still be the number-one cause of death across the entire country, still beating out mega-killer heart disease by about 100 daily deaths as of yesterday. The deaths are highly concentrated in just a few regions, with almost 67 percent of the deaths in the top 5 states. Having largely spared most of the country, the China virus is still the number-one cause of death at the national level.

    Heart disease kills about .2 percent of the population each year. In New York, that would mean about 45 people die of heart disease on a typical day. Recently, daily deaths attributed to the China virus have been running around 10 times that figure. And heart disease’s 45 deaths per day is considerably worse than even a bad flu season.

    If the entire US population were infected with Covid-19, and it had a mortality rate of .01 percent, that would mean that 32,800 people would die. It would be killing around 89 people per day on average if it took a year to run through the entire population. But the real daily death count is currently running at well over 20 times that.

    That implies that, at current daily mortality rates, the virus would run through the entire population, achieving a 100 percent infection prevalence, in just 18 days given a flat current-infection curve. With exponential growth, it should achieve a more realistic 70 percent prevalence in perhaps a couple days. So, if the researchers above are correct, then the outbreak should all be over by the beginning of May with continued total lockdowns and perhaps as early as this Tuesday if restrictions were lifted. It’s pure fantasy.

    It also turns out that Wu flu has reportedly already killed over 40k people in the US, 8k more than would be possible with a .01 percent IFR. And its total current infection prevalence is almost certainly not more than 3 percent across the country, considering all of the above issues and that Santa Clara’s roughly 1,000 cases per million people is around the median for all states.

    None of the numbers put forth in the studies in the OP come close to meshing with observed reality unless we postulate that the national figures are maimed beyond recognition.

    There is a lot of uncertainty in the data from all sources. Maybe Santa Clara has been randomly administering most of the 18,000 tests to healthy people. But that doesn’t look like the way to bet.

    For now, I’ll err on the side of listening to the medical professionals who are on the front lines, the near entirety of whom warn us of a genuine menace.

    *Hypochondriacs, randomly testing healthy people or testing asymptomatic critical workers could push the positive rate down. Still, it won't dramatically affect the conclusions. 10% or 5% of a population having worrisome symptoms would mean virtually every Santa Clara resident would know many people with Covid-19 symptoms.

    You say some very important things, but be careful.

    “18k tests is a big number…”

    You say Santa Clara has a population of 2m. Massachusetts has a population 3.5 times bigger. We’ve done over 160,000 tests. So twice as many tests per capita. We do on average 6k per day or 1% of our population.

    I’ve ceased to consider whether any of these numbers are big or small because they are the biggest we as a nation have ever done in such a time period.

    The lastest number I read was that we inoculated 2.4 million service members against anthrax in the 80s I think. We have tested about 4 million Americans for Covid. So there’s that. Good news?

    To me, it is impossible to compare this present outbreak to past flu seasons because we never did anywhere near this type of testing in any of those flu seasons. Although everybody to this point has kind of taken those numbers for granted, they are complete guesswork and extrapolation using models using very little hard data.

    Numbers like 30-60,000 deaths and 18-26 million infections are not projections they are estimates of the past!!! They might as well be for the Black Death in 1346.

    What we are doing know is literally the best hard data we have ever attempted to collect in real time. And EVERYBODY AGREES it is pretty bad and that it doesn’t tell us anything that we really would like to know. It has only accounted for 1% of the population and at most 3% of the population in the real hotspots. And it took 30-40 days to collect.

    “For now, I’ll err on the side of listening to the medical professionals who are on the front lines, the near entirety of whom warn us of a genuine menace.”

    Yeah. I hear ya. But, again, be careful. This might be like listening to the generals and colonels during the War on Iraq/Afghanistan/Terrrorism. Do you ever recall any of the professionals on the front-line saying anything but that this was a war we had to fight the way we were fighting it?

    You know, that whole Upton Sinclair thing:

    “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it.”

    And remember, sometimes it seems like the only people observing a plague are those medical professionals in certain hotspot hospitals. In 80% of the United States less than 1.5 people out of a thousand have been confirmed infected. Therefore only about 0.15 people out of 1000 or 15 out of 100,000 have been hospitalized and then one tenth of that again have died of COVID-19. So the people in all those communities see almost no effects of the disease itself and yet 35% have lost their income and life has been put on hold as they know it.

    The cognitive dissonance can only grow.

    Nobody in the medical community or at a political level or even at the the level of Ron Unz – who have taken a definite stand on the side of the political decisions that have been made – can EVER admit to having made mistakes, misjudgments, or were wrong in any way. They will always have to maintain that they were trying to save lives and were “erring on the side of…”

    I’m on the fence. I don’t know. I’m grateful I live in the United States. But some days things can be really dark.

    • Replies: @Negrolphin Pool

    It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it.
     
    Truer words have never been spoken. In your analogy above though, I would instinctively listen to the soldiers far more readily than the generals.

    I'm on the fence too. Even though it is clear that many on the anti-lockdown side of the argument are taking extreme liberties in minimizing the risk, the other side's solutions could end up imposing even greater long-term costs.
  288. @Johnny Rico
    Ron, with all due respect, I think you need to step back and meditate a little on this whole "hoaxer" thing.

    This really is not a black-and-white issue.

    The vast majority of readers here are able to take what these "hoaxers" say with a grain of salt at the least.

    There was also an interview on 60 Minutes last week with a New York City emergency room doctor. The guy was almost incoherent with exhaustion.

    Nobody is doubting what these people are saying. But it would be like interviewing a captain in the Anzio beachhead regarding what WWII was about.

    These interviews and arguments are missing the forest for the trees. Cliche.

    There were protests at several State capitols this weekend to lift the lockdown.

    There are bigger issues. Are we seeing the seeds of a French Revolution type upheaval?

    20 percent of the population is the United States which includes New York has a "confirmed" infection rate averaging about 6 per thousand residents. NYC is maybe 20 per thousand.

    The other 80 percent of the United States which includes California and Washington State has a confirmed infection rate under 1.5 per thousand, at least 4 times less than the hotspots.

    Everybody knows somebody that knows somebody who has died, and now almost everybody knows somebody who was sick. But the vast majority have zero observations of a plague.

    But they do have daily observation of the effects of the lockdown.

    The cognitive dissonance only builds.

    When we compare this thing to "the normal flu" it turns out we are comparing a lack of hard testing data to a lack of hard testing data. Our knowledge of past flu seasons it seems is based on the educated guesswork and models of a scientific/medical community that is awkwardly trying to avoid anyone noticing they can't help us.

    How many of the 30-60,000 dead in past flu epidemics were put on ventilators? What we're their ages?

    COVID I was told by a friend currently working on a COVID ward (half the floors in her hospital in Boston are COVID patients) is now the number 2 cause of death. I asked her what number 1 was. She said heart disease.

    I would like to know what the current deathrate for heart-disease is in NYC.

    My friend also says that clerical and other hospital employees have been impressed into moving bodies because there are too many to deal with. And I have no reason to doubt this. But is this anecdotal or is it a widespread, continuing issue?

    You have highlighted the fact that even in NYC the healthcare system has not actually been overwhelmed. But I think you jump too fast to the conclusion that it would have been without lockdown orders. Maybe the lockdown inhibited the supply-system and transport system enough or in some ways we don't understand yet that exacerbated the problem. History frequently sees things that we were oblivious to at the time.

    I personally don't think Sweden can be used as an example for anything definitive because of its unique characteristics and its small population and population density. It also doesn't sport numbers that are orders of magnitude different from other similarly sized regions. But it is a bit of an outlier so we need to be honest and take a hard look at successes and failures across the board.

    “The cognitive dissonance only builds.” – This cognitive dissonance is not a true cognitive riddance as it presupposes a cognition. The people who are preparing the French Revolution of Flu Hoaxers Minutemen in Minnesota by rejecting the Anzio experience in New York are not data driven but belief driven. They accumulate data according to their prior confirmation bias. They do not experience any cognitive dissonance, they just believe what they always wanted to believe.

    • Replies: @Johnny Rico
    Some of them, sure.

    But there are very few hard facts based on hard numbers that those spinning the official narrative for the hoi polloi can use to convince the skeptical that what they observe with their own eyes is not in fact reality.

    First, here is people's observation in the United States:

    1) The crisis only exists in New York City. New York City's healthcare apparatus has never been actually overwhelmed. Maybe Federal help saved it, but is has not been overwhelmed. And the governor of New York is already looking to open up the economy.

    2) There is no plague ravaging the rest of the country that would require putting 25%+ of the workforce out of a job and destroying the economy, literally creating a situation worse than 1930 overnight.

    3) What does exist in most of the country is 40,000 deaths in the last 30 days of people 80% of which are over 80 years old and those under that age who die are seriously unhealthy or obese or have heart-disease. We are now going on two weeks of averaging 2000 deaths per day. That means 100,000 death certificates that will be signed COVID-19 by June 1st - no matter what - no matter why the people actually died. In any other year you would have that many deaths, but they would be marked down for a range of reasons, some of them flu. Not this year.

    4) Skeptics and believers alike can knock that figure in half, say that half are fraudulent. Doesn't matter. 50,000 by June 1st. It will be 100,000 by October. Whatever. It falls within that 100-240,000 estimate that "The White House" put out at some point. You can actually split hairs and argue and make the same figure, 50,000/100,000 whatever fit "the regular flu" range...the key is that it will never be the Magic One Million figure that the fear-mongers and hysteria-mongers touted.

    5) Any number under a quarter million can be explained as "the regular flu" because - SURPRISE! - our touted medical/scientific community doesn't have any hard numbers or testing history. They were all just wild speculation and models. Read McNeill's Plagues and Peoples. The numbers for the 2016 flu season or whatever look a lot like the numbers for the Black Death in 1346. Listen to the regularly updated This Week In Virology podcast. https://www.microbe.tv/twiv/ It is enlightening to realize how little the world's experts know and agree on now after 60 or 90 days experience with this virus.

    To counter what people actually see with their own eyes, here is the best, hard, tested, confirmed numbers we have:

    20% of the population of the United States which resides in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Washington DC, Rhode Island, Michigan, and Louisiana was infected at a rate of 4.5 per 1000 five days ago. Today that number has climbed to 7.1. The other 80% of the country including Pueryo Rico was 0.8/1000 infected 5 days ago and 1.0/1000 today.

    80% of the country is 0.1% infected and infections grow by 25% in 5 days. 20% of the country is 0.7% infected. Those states get 45% more infected every 5 days.

    Put simply - 7/8ths of the problem is in 1/5th of the country. And that inequality/imbalance gets slightly worse with time, or at least it has been. The simplistic notion that is being touted by the mainstream media that "certain hotspots are dying down while others are expanding" is unsubstantiated and made by journalists who clearly have no understanding of the movement of these numbers.

    Again, simple but important point - on average 3 out of 1000 people are definitely infected, maybe as many as 100 out of 1000 or even more, but only 1 out of a thousand ever has symptoms that make it noticable.

    I have no idea about any long-term effects.

    My own opinion (subject to change) is that the virus spread fastest and hardest in the places where the testing/medical-care response was strongest. Younger/healthier doctors and healthcare workers with inadequate information or PPE contracted large viral loads in the first weeks and were actively infecting other staff and their families while asymptomatic in the first fives days of infection. Before they showed any symptoms the people they infected were already infecting a third-level.

    Wyoming with a population of 580,000 has 313 infected and 2 deaths.

    It appears that approximately of every ten people tested confirmed positive only one is hospitalized. Of ten hospitalized, one dies.

    Do you think Wyoming and the other 40 or so states and 80% of the country that are infected at that low a level have enough doctors, nurses and ambulances to handle the problem?

    I'm guessing that in this hysterical climate if four other people died in Wyoming this month they had motive to take the time to test the bodies. I realize they don't have the time or man-power to do that in New York. But Wyoming? Or maybe not, maybe they layed off or furloughed the entire staffs of all the hospitals in Wyoming.

    Do you think Wyoming needs to be locked-down/out-of-work/stay-at-home/quarantined?

    Is it possible that Wyoming suffered more flu deaths during March/April 2019.

    The details I've giving you here take a minimum amount of work with a spreadsheet.

    But I'm a little confused why I have to do this. Shouldn't these numbers be front page New York Times every day?

  289. @Pincher Martin
    Sweden has several advantages that other European countries do not have.

    * The highest percentage of any European labor force that was already working from home before the coronavirus hit.

    * Half of Swedish households are single-member households (sad, but apparently true).

    * The least dense population of any large, hard-hit country in European.

    Netherlands - 521 per square kilometer.

    England (U.K.) - 424

    Belgium - 376

    U.K. - 272

    Switzerland - 206

    Italy - 200

    France - 118

    Spain - 92

    European average - 73

    Sweden - 23


    * A sheepish population that follows government "guidelines" as if they were law.

    But Sweden has been hit harder than any of its neighbors by far. Even Germany, which shares borders with several hard-hit countries, doesn't come close.

    And for what purpose? The economy is way down. Unemployment is way up - nearly at 10%. And if you think you save the economy by keeping restaurants and bars open, think again. Most restaurants will not survive if their business is down 30%. I doubt Sweden is much different in this regard than the rest of the world.

    A significant proportion of the Swedish population lives in Stockholm, Gothenburg and Malmo. The others live in small towns and hamlets, hardly anyone lives in the vast north area of the country, essentially the Swedish Siberia. So Sweden is really a combination of very low density and high density.

    There really isn’t much evidence that lockdowns have made much difference, as those Israeli scientists showed. The Chinese lockdown was similar to the Spanish, French or Italian, but the Chinese realised to be actually effective they had to separate the infected and potentially infected from everyone else and housed them away from their families, no one in Europe has done this, unlike the Orientals. In reality I expect the virus quickly takes the low hanging fruit and, combined with rising immunity, burns itself out.

    • Replies: @LondonBob
    https://twitter.com/AlexBerenson/status/1251996642640879616?s=20

    Another paper showing that there isn't much upside to going further than just sensible social distancing measures.
    , @utu
    "Sweden is really a combination of very low density and high density. There really isn’t much evidence that lockdowns have made much difference" - What a nonsense. It suffices to compare Sweden and Finland as they have similar population densities. Sweden has ten times more deaths per capita than Finland. When you take Scandinavian countries Norway, Denmark and Finland that are very similar on economic level and culturally, their death per capita and population density correlate at over 95% but when you add Sweden to the list the correlation drops to 15%. Clearly Sweden is a striking outlier.
    , @Pincher Martin

    A significant proportion of the Swedish population lives in Stockholm, Gothenburg and Malmo. The others live in small towns and hamlets, hardly anyone lives in the vast north area of the country, essentially the Swedish Siberia. So Sweden is really a combination of very low density and high density.
     
    By any comparison, Swedes live more isolated than the other hard-hit European countries on the list.
  290. @LondonBob
    A significant proportion of the Swedish population lives in Stockholm, Gothenburg and Malmo. The others live in small towns and hamlets, hardly anyone lives in the vast north area of the country, essentially the Swedish Siberia. So Sweden is really a combination of very low density and high density.

    There really isn't much evidence that lockdowns have made much difference, as those Israeli scientists showed. The Chinese lockdown was similar to the Spanish, French or Italian, but the Chinese realised to be actually effective they had to separate the infected and potentially infected from everyone else and housed them away from their families, no one in Europe has done this, unlike the Orientals. In reality I expect the virus quickly takes the low hanging fruit and, combined with rising immunity, burns itself out.

    Another paper showing that there isn’t much upside to going further than just sensible social distancing measures.

  291. @TomSchmidt
    I don't Pooh-Pooh that social distancing has reduced transmission. Anyone who thinks it has increased transmission might be short-term right but must be long-term wrong. In Italy, houses with people with the Black Death in them were bricked up. Presumably everyone in them subsequently got the disease, but they did not have the ability to spread it through "mal aria," bad air. Of course, we now know Black Death is typically spread by flea bites, but it's airborne form, pneumonic plague, was, ive read, 100% fatal.

    Objections are to two things: 1) the advocates of lockdowns are rapidly lying about the motivation. It was to "flatten the curve," and drive the number of infections below the level that collapses the healthcare system. I suspect that NYC got a full dose of infection before the March 20th lockdown, and the subsequent three weeks were an experiment in what happens when you infect a city. Deaths are high, but the healthcare system has not broken. The curve has been flattened below the level of collapsing the healthcare system; no one died because he needed a ventilator and none was available. Meanwhile, curve flattening has been dropped down the memory hole, and another goal has replaced it: obedience to political fiat seems about the best summary, with Ron Unz bidding us to praise a health bureaucrat for "saving millions" of lives. (And to be fair, if the virus were as fatal as 1%, which it does not appear to be, then millions would have died.)

    2) in typical fashion, the state assumes "equality" amongst the people. Steve, too, when we know that the harrowing effected by the disease falls most heavily upon the old and sick. So a tremendously costly method of preventing the disease from reaching everyone was chosen, to the loud objections of many on this site. I thought Steve's idea of a mask a day per person at a cost of billions was a better way of handling things; it seems the governor of New York, having blown an irreparable multi-billion-dollar hole in his budget and his major city's budget (make no mistake: the value of office properties in NYC, and their tax yield, will not swiftly recover from this), has finally come around to the understanding that he cannot, paterfamilias-like, run everyone's life, or he will soon lack any resources to do so.

    Objections are to two things: 1) the advocates of lockdowns are rapidly lying about the motivation. It was to “flatten the curve,” and drive the number of infections below the level that collapses the healthcare system.

    Motivations can change over time for perfectly sensible and honest reasons.

    The advocates of the lockdown who I’ve read were hoping to keep the virus under control in the U.S. in February and then, once that became impossible in March, hoped to keep the curve flat long enough to buy time for our heath care system.

    That’s not dishonesty; that’s simply understanding the context in which they are making policy suggestions. If your first defense falls, you move back to your second defense.

    Far more dishonest have been the advocates of letting it rip.

    1) They first said it was no worse than the flu.

    2) Then they said that is was no worse than a bad case of the flu.

    3) Then they said that while it might be worse than a bad case of the flu, it still only killed people who were already old, decrepit and useless.

    4) Now, with many working-age people dying, they are hanging their hats on any piece of good news which comes their way.

    Meanwhile, curve flattening has been dropped down the memory hole, and another goal has replaced it: obedience to political fiat seems about the best summary, with Ron Unz bidding us to praise a health bureaucrat for “saving millions” of lives.

    I’m a conservative Republican who lives in Santa Clara County. So believe me when I tell you it hurts me to say this, but California’s typically-loony leaders have done a bang-up job of keeping this virus under control. The situation in SF could easily be as bad as New York City, and it’s not even close.

    • Replies: @Johnny Rico

    "but California’s typically-loony leaders have done a bang-up job of keeping this virus under control."
     
    I think the question a lot of people have is what exactly did they do?

    Can you describe what that looks like technically, tactically, and operationally?

    When the forensics of San Francisco and New York are laid out in the history books five years from now, what is it going to say?

    New York has done more testing than California. Is it possible that if California tested as many people per capita as New York it would have many more confirmed cases and more people convinced they need hospitalization and traffic through a system which will spread the virus unintentionally but unavoidably?
    , @Hernan Pizzaro del Blanco
    The demographics of NY are very different from California. The NY Metro area is 21% Black and 12% Puerto Rican , 10% Dominican

    Santa Clara is 2% Black and has 0 Dominicans

    The median age in Santa Clara is 33 verse 40 in the NY Metro area

    The elderly population in the the NY Metro area is 20% verse 12% in Santa Clara

    Here in the NY Metro area the majority of deaths under the age of 60 are among Blacks. Almost no white or Asian victims under the age of 50.
    , @utu
    Another good comment from you. Thanks!
    , @Kratoklastes

    Now, with many working-age people dying
     
    Where? Prove it.

    Try to use only deaths with a test confirming covid19.

    NYC helpfully splits them out - as of yesterday, they've had a total of 2368 deaths in people under 65 who tested positive, of which over 85% had relevant pre-existing conditions.

    NYC's population aged 20-65: 5.1 million. (I'm assuming that the census data covers the same area)

    2368 of that 5.1 million have died-with covid19. That's 0.044% - the margin of error in the census data is 0.1% more than 20x that.

    Sad for their families, but demographically it's a rounding error. It's late APRIL and this thing has been around since late DECEMBER.

    Who told you that 'many working age people were dying'? Relative to what?

    I don't know of a single country where the deaths of people of working age are a demographically-relevant number.

    The world's absolutely awash in data that's deliberately over-reporting covid19 deaths (by saying "heart attack + covid19 = covid19", for example) and yet I guarantee you won't be able to find a country where deaths in working age populations are non-trivial in the context of the entire age cohort.

    I get age-cohort data for 26 countries every single day, and I'm adding countries as I find good data sources.

    The age-group data is so revealing that the UK government has consistently refused to make it readily available. (It's been a few days since I checked, I admit... maybe you can find something).
    , @TomSchmidt
    Letting it rip, in the context of what we saw in Italy, could have led to disaster here. I'd argue that the efforts or lack thereof in NYC in March constituted "let it rip," and the 13,000 excess deaths in the city from March 11 to April 13 constitute the people killed by what the Brits might originally call the pursuing the herd immunity strategy. (Deaths after about April 10 are almost certainly post-lockdown-acquired infections. People dying this week must surely be post-lockdown, at a very high percentage.)

    Flatten the curve is still the herd immunity strategy, but without unnecessary deaths due to healthcare overload. Now, if the objective has changed (crush the curve, exterminate the virus), I haven't heard that from my political leaders at a national or state level, but they are acting like that is their goal.

    Which leads to the questions: is that goal achievable? realistic? How might it be phrased as a SMART goal?

    I quote Ann Coulter:


    According to a model recently published in The New York Times, if Trump had issued social distancing guidelines just two weeks earlier — on March 2, rather than March 16 — instead of 60,000 Americans dying from the Chinese coronavirus (projected!), only 6,000 would have died.

    If that’s what a two-week quarantine would have done, then how about a four-week quarantine?

    By the end of the month, 90% of the country will have been shut down, quarantined and socially distancing for FOUR WEEKS. ...

    After two weeks, you’re either sick or the infection has passed through you with no symptoms.

    Again: It’s been three. Does social distancing work or doesn’t it?

    After four weeks of self-isolation, won’t 90% of the country be Wuhan-free? Or are we in a sci-fi movie with a virus that can live forever without a host?
     

    Keeping the healthcare system from collapsing was a good idea. In the absence of a vaccine, so is herd immunity, the original goal of curve-flattening. Manifestly, the healthcare system has not collapsed. Despite being locked down for 31 days now, NYC still suffered about 500 deaths yesterday, most of which must have been post-lockdown infections.

    My guess would be that NYC will be better off on reopening than "the City," simply because of the numbers of people who died and the concomitant numbers who must have gotten infected and recovered. That we have no idea in the latter case due to lack of randomized testing is the true scandal, in addition to government failing mask stockpiling.

    The elderly and sickly in areas that haven't experienced NYC rates of dying are especially at risk, I should think, and will continue to be so. Time, perhaps, to move to a more cost-effective and life-sparing approach than the typical one taken by one-size-fits-all egalitarian liberalism, perhaps?

  292. @LondonBob
    A significant proportion of the Swedish population lives in Stockholm, Gothenburg and Malmo. The others live in small towns and hamlets, hardly anyone lives in the vast north area of the country, essentially the Swedish Siberia. So Sweden is really a combination of very low density and high density.

    There really isn't much evidence that lockdowns have made much difference, as those Israeli scientists showed. The Chinese lockdown was similar to the Spanish, French or Italian, but the Chinese realised to be actually effective they had to separate the infected and potentially infected from everyone else and housed them away from their families, no one in Europe has done this, unlike the Orientals. In reality I expect the virus quickly takes the low hanging fruit and, combined with rising immunity, burns itself out.

    “Sweden is really a combination of very low density and high density. There really isn’t much evidence that lockdowns have made much difference” – What a nonsense. It suffices to compare Sweden and Finland as they have similar population densities. Sweden has ten times more deaths per capita than Finland. When you take Scandinavian countries Norway, Denmark and Finland that are very similar on economic level and culturally, their death per capita and population density correlate at over 95% but when you add Sweden to the list the correlation drops to 15%. Clearly Sweden is a striking outlier.

    • Replies: @Johnny Rico
    Now I don't see anything exceptional about any of those countries' numbers.

    Sweden has a population of 10m, the other three about 5.5m each.

    Sweden has an infection rate of 1.4/1000 and a death rate of 0.15/1000

    Denmark (1.3, 0.06)

    Norway (1.3, 0.03)

    Finland(0.7, 0.02)

    For comparison, Sweden has a higher infection rate than about half of the United States and a Death rate that would rank it in the top 15% of the United States. Sweden has a death rate less than Massachusetts at 0.25 but more than Washington DC at 0.14.

    Sweden's infection rate is more than twice that of California. That, I think, is notable.

  293. Hail says: • Website
    @UK
    What's really strange is that a consensus has actually emerged among professionals in this area and is very similar to your post, but politics has prevented it from emerging as a proper talking point. Politicians are too scared to repeat it as the volume of public and media hysteria is petrifying.

    Sweden followed the expert advice all of the way through because constitutionally the experts were in charge and Swedish people are conformist enough to not buck that wisdom.

    Ironically, the people who shout at others to stay home while screaming "science is science" are most certainly not on the side of the science. They had some backing two months ago because there were enough unknowns for a wide range of views to fit (just) within consensus, but not anymore.

    Meanwhile the lunatic "it is a hoax and also a terrible virus that the Jews released" lot have happened to find themselves at least in the same direction as the experts, if for difference reasons and far off to the extreme.

    Ron Unz is just following his usual pattern of being absolutely wrong about everything, except on totally banal statements, like "China is a rising power", to which everyone (except perhaps rhetorically and hyperbolically) agrees and has agreed for many decades. Of course he takes his proven record of repeating banal talking points in an astonished tone, as proof of his actual crackpot theories and general genius. Or maybe he is just a troll amusedly hoovering up all dissident traffic onto one website. The website is phenomenal so he is certainly some kind of savant regardless.

    Meanwhile China's reaction was just some mix of coverup, overreaction to their initial failure and a natural result of their overbearing authoritarian government. It amazes the ignorant only. Just as the ignorant are amazed by China still massively lagging Hong Kong despite Hong Kong having gotten rich (with China still being poor on average) with a disinterested and exhausted British government in charge.

    Sweden will be absolutely vindicated in a year. Almost everyone else will look pretty foolish. Or not, because the Emperor rarely admits to wearing no clothes.

    Sweden will be absolutely vindicated in a year

    Sweden is already vindicated, as we speak, as far as I’m concerned. In fact, probably by early April it was already a done deal. Now that we’re into the latter part of April, there’s just no question.

    There is a lag effect here, and people are reacting to situations they see now but which reflect conditions of x days/weeks ago, like seeing the light of a distant star, light that is already x million years old.

    It’s settled. It’s over.

    I know this is late-thread. I do think the commentariat here is sharp, and if there are well-meaning holdouts out there who still believe this is an apocalyptic virus best comparable the 1918 Influenza, I’d just say they need to read more on the matter.

    I recommend the series “A Swiss Doctor on COVID19” from the excellent website Swiss Propaganda Research. The website OffGuardian has also truly distinguished itself in this.

    The series of updates from Dr. Knut Wittkowski which I have been re-posting here (that links to a series of replies with updates from him that he has been posting elsewhere) may also be helpful. Wittkowski, among many other actual experts, knew of what he spoke, and called it right; this is his field of expertise, alas, but no one listened; the media had already made its pact with the devil.

    Almost everyone else will look pretty foolish.

    I must say that while a lot of people look bad, at really all layers of society, I have noticed the Germanic NW Europeans (with Sweden the standout on a national-policy basis) as being leading anti-Panic voices. Several Swiss have distinguished themselves. A lot of Germans. The Netherlands did pretty well with resisting the madness, afaik. Brazil’s president did well in a personal sense but I’m not clear on whether he was bale to keep the wackos and Shutdown-fanatics at bay.

    The English-speaking countries did well for a time, but then caved in. Our achilles heel was and is a bloodthirsty, “Enemy of the People” media, a hostile and parasitic force attached to a society it hates rather than an organic part of the society.

    What is the lesson of the Coronavirus Crisis? In three Latin words. I’ll submit this one:

    MEDIA DELENDA EST.

    • Agree: Kratoklastes, Mehen
    • Replies: @Johnny Rico

    It’s settled. It’s over.
     
    Haha. You got some good stuff, but Clausewitz disagrees on that point. Book I. Chapter 1. Section 9. Look it up :)
    , @utu
    I see you continue trolling with your German brigade lead by Knut Wittkowski.

    https://www.unz.com/jthompson/models-the-logic-of-failure/#comment-3843362
    The strongest among the countering theories is that the virus or viruses in general do not exist. Somebody wrote about it here at UR; then I googled it and indeed there is this guy in Germany who even went to court for it. It is interesting that hoaxers get so much support in terms of arguments and talking points from people like Wittkowski and several other credentialed Germans. Few hoaxer commenters here have German connection as well. Is Germany running a psyop and what we see is a concerted operation to gather all the anti-gov skeptics and libertarian nutjobs together or just the usual thing when some Germans are carried away by their logical mind unrestrained by a common sense and intuition that Gods for some reason haven’t blessed them with?

    BTW, in the KGB disinformation campaign about HIV in 1980’s (Operation Infection) a German-Jewish microbiologist played a very prominent role. The operation was quite successful. The are tens of millions in America who fell for it.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Infektion
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jakob_Segal
     
  294. @LondonBob
    A significant proportion of the Swedish population lives in Stockholm, Gothenburg and Malmo. The others live in small towns and hamlets, hardly anyone lives in the vast north area of the country, essentially the Swedish Siberia. So Sweden is really a combination of very low density and high density.

    There really isn't much evidence that lockdowns have made much difference, as those Israeli scientists showed. The Chinese lockdown was similar to the Spanish, French or Italian, but the Chinese realised to be actually effective they had to separate the infected and potentially infected from everyone else and housed them away from their families, no one in Europe has done this, unlike the Orientals. In reality I expect the virus quickly takes the low hanging fruit and, combined with rising immunity, burns itself out.

    A significant proportion of the Swedish population lives in Stockholm, Gothenburg and Malmo. The others live in small towns and hamlets, hardly anyone lives in the vast north area of the country, essentially the Swedish Siberia. So Sweden is really a combination of very low density and high density.

    By any comparison, Swedes live more isolated than the other hard-hit European countries on the list.

  295. NYC doctors innovated a new protocol for treating COVID patients with breathing problems (put them on their stomachs and treat with oxygen masks) that cut ventilator demand substantially

    How is this considered ‘innovative’, tho?

    I know they had some people from marketing think up the term ‘proning‘, but the technique itself is an ages-old way of clearing clogged lungs generally… to give it a crack for covid patients seems obvious.

    When my younger brother contracted bacterial pneumonia as a kid – 40 years ago – part of his daily treatment (after a short stay in hospital) involved postural drainage with percussion. He had to lay down in a specific set of postures, and for some of them my Mum had to ‘slap’ different parts of his back (‘slap’ is the wrong word: using a cupped hand, so that a pocket of air gets trapped on each strike) .

    That’s one of the reasons I mentioned it a week or so ago when I queried the efficacy of ventilators (and proposed what might be more useful than forcing oxygen into liquid-filled lungs – i.e., guaphenesin, aspiration of the sputum, and postural percussive drainage).

    With ‘bashing’ provided by The Lovely, I have used the same technique 3 or 4 times this millennium (first event was in 2004), when I have managed to contract horrible bacterial chest infections – usually as a result of being breathed on by a foreigner (and usually the foreigner had fetid breath).

    You see, my personal kryptonite is very specifically lung-related, and only kicks in under very specific circumstances.

    I have relatively narrow bronchioles (one level down from the tertiary bronchi), and if I get a chest infection they narrow further.

    In the ordinary course of events they’re not a problem – I have abnormally large lung capacity, and my bronchioles are small relative to capacity, not outright.

    So if I detect grossness a-lurking, I get on top of that shit immediately – massive hydration; hot baths and showers; lots of gargling and (ewww) nasal lavage; guaiphenesin as an expectorant and salbutamol to open up the pipes. (To be fair: the entire therapeutic effect might be down to those last 2 things).

    If I don’t get on top of it in time and things close up, my entire life gets very snotty very quick – because everything gets trapped and basically starts to congeal and go foul.

    As I wrote back in 2008 –

    the output is a very fine example of the snotmaker’s craft. Thicker than contact adhesive left in a warm room for five minutes, and greener than the pus that oozes from the hole where Cheney’s conscience ought to reside. Getting the stuff out through my finely constructed (but prone to contraction) bronchii requires coughing on a scale to wake the dead

    • Replies: @gfhändel
    Have you considered the possibility of your having atypical cystic fibrosis?
  296. @utu
    "The cognitive dissonance only builds." - This cognitive dissonance is not a true cognitive riddance as it presupposes a cognition. The people who are preparing the French Revolution of Flu Hoaxers Minutemen in Minnesota by rejecting the Anzio experience in New York are not data driven but belief driven. They accumulate data according to their prior confirmation bias. They do not experience any cognitive dissonance, they just believe what they always wanted to believe.

    Some of them, sure.

    But there are very few hard facts based on hard numbers that those spinning the official narrative for the hoi polloi can use to convince the skeptical that what they observe with their own eyes is not in fact reality.

    First, here is people’s observation in the United States:

    1) The crisis only exists in New York City. New York City’s healthcare apparatus has never been actually overwhelmed. Maybe Federal help saved it, but is has not been overwhelmed. And the governor of New York is already looking to open up the economy.

    2) There is no plague ravaging the rest of the country that would require putting 25%+ of the workforce out of a job and destroying the economy, literally creating a situation worse than 1930 overnight.

    3) What does exist in most of the country is 40,000 deaths in the last 30 days of people 80% of which are over 80 years old and those under that age who die are seriously unhealthy or obese or have heart-disease. We are now going on two weeks of averaging 2000 deaths per day. That means 100,000 death certificates that will be signed COVID-19 by June 1st – no matter what – no matter why the people actually died. In any other year you would have that many deaths, but they would be marked down for a range of reasons, some of them flu. Not this year.

    4) Skeptics and believers alike can knock that figure in half, say that half are fraudulent. Doesn’t matter. 50,000 by June 1st. It will be 100,000 by October. Whatever. It falls within that 100-240,000 estimate that “The White House” put out at some point. You can actually split hairs and argue and make the same figure, 50,000/100,000 whatever fit “the regular flu” range…the key is that it will never be the Magic One Million figure that the fear-mongers and hysteria-mongers touted.

    5) Any number under a quarter million can be explained as “the regular flu” because – SURPRISE! – our touted medical/scientific community doesn’t have any hard numbers or testing history. They were all just wild speculation and models. Read McNeill’s Plagues and Peoples. The numbers for the 2016 flu season or whatever look a lot like the numbers for the Black Death in 1346. Listen to the regularly updated This Week In Virology podcast. https://www.microbe.tv/twiv/ It is enlightening to realize how little the world’s experts know and agree on now after 60 or 90 days experience with this virus.

    To counter what people actually see with their own eyes, here is the best, hard, tested, confirmed numbers we have:

    20% of the population of the United States which resides in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Washington DC, Rhode Island, Michigan, and Louisiana was infected at a rate of 4.5 per 1000 five days ago. Today that number has climbed to 7.1. The other 80% of the country including Pueryo Rico was 0.8/1000 infected 5 days ago and 1.0/1000 today.

    80% of the country is 0.1% infected and infections grow by 25% in 5 days. 20% of the country is 0.7% infected. Those states get 45% more infected every 5 days.

    Put simply – 7/8ths of the problem is in 1/5th of the country. And that inequality/imbalance gets slightly worse with time, or at least it has been. The simplistic notion that is being touted by the mainstream media that “certain hotspots are dying down while others are expanding” is unsubstantiated and made by journalists who clearly have no understanding of the movement of these numbers.

    Again, simple but important point – on average 3 out of 1000 people are definitely infected, maybe as many as 100 out of 1000 or even more, but only 1 out of a thousand ever has symptoms that make it noticable.

    I have no idea about any long-term effects.

    My own opinion (subject to change) is that the virus spread fastest and hardest in the places where the testing/medical-care response was strongest. Younger/healthier doctors and healthcare workers with inadequate information or PPE contracted large viral loads in the first weeks and were actively infecting other staff and their families while asymptomatic in the first fives days of infection. Before they showed any symptoms the people they infected were already infecting a third-level.

    Wyoming with a population of 580,000 has 313 infected and 2 deaths.

    It appears that approximately of every ten people tested confirmed positive only one is hospitalized. Of ten hospitalized, one dies.

    Do you think Wyoming and the other 40 or so states and 80% of the country that are infected at that low a level have enough doctors, nurses and ambulances to handle the problem?

    I’m guessing that in this hysterical climate if four other people died in Wyoming this month they had motive to take the time to test the bodies. I realize they don’t have the time or man-power to do that in New York. But Wyoming? Or maybe not, maybe they layed off or furloughed the entire staffs of all the hospitals in Wyoming.

    Do you think Wyoming needs to be locked-down/out-of-work/stay-at-home/quarantined?

    Is it possible that Wyoming suffered more flu deaths during March/April 2019.

    The details I’ve giving you here take a minimum amount of work with a spreadsheet.

    But I’m a little confused why I have to do this. Shouldn’t these numbers be front page New York Times every day?

  297. @Pincher Martin

    Objections are to two things: 1) the advocates of lockdowns are rapidly lying about the motivation. It was to “flatten the curve,” and drive the number of infections below the level that collapses the healthcare system.
     
    Motivations can change over time for perfectly sensible and honest reasons.

    The advocates of the lockdown who I've read were hoping to keep the virus under control in the U.S. in February and then, once that became impossible in March, hoped to keep the curve flat long enough to buy time for our heath care system.

    That's not dishonesty; that's simply understanding the context in which they are making policy suggestions. If your first defense falls, you move back to your second defense.

    Far more dishonest have been the advocates of letting it rip.

    1) They first said it was no worse than the flu.

    2) Then they said that is was no worse than a bad case of the flu.

    3) Then they said that while it might be worse than a bad case of the flu, it still only killed people who were already old, decrepit and useless.

    4) Now, with many working-age people dying, they are hanging their hats on any piece of good news which comes their way.


    Meanwhile, curve flattening has been dropped down the memory hole, and another goal has replaced it: obedience to political fiat seems about the best summary, with Ron Unz bidding us to praise a health bureaucrat for “saving millions” of lives.
     
    I'm a conservative Republican who lives in Santa Clara County. So believe me when I tell you it hurts me to say this, but California's typically-loony leaders have done a bang-up job of keeping this virus under control. The situation in SF could easily be as bad as New York City, and it's not even close.

    “but California’s typically-loony leaders have done a bang-up job of keeping this virus under control.”

    I think the question a lot of people have is what exactly did they do?

    Can you describe what that looks like technically, tactically, and operationally?

    When the forensics of San Francisco and New York are laid out in the history books five years from now, what is it going to say?

    New York has done more testing than California. Is it possible that if California tested as many people per capita as New York it would have many more confirmed cases and more people convinced they need hospitalization and traffic through a system which will spread the virus unintentionally but unavoidably?

  298. @Ron Unz

    However, are you sure that “lots of young, perfectly healthy doctors have died.”?
     
    Well, I haven't tried to produce a list. But that famous early doctor in China died in his 30s, and there was a big NYT Magazine piece about the first case in NJ, a young perfectly healthy physicians assistant in his 30s who came very close to dying. I'm sure I've read other stories here and there as well.

    Can I write a bloviating and tendentious article “explaining” how proportions work while claiming that those who disagree with me are “End of Days/Ragnarokists”, and adding in my pet theories about how the world is actually secretly ruled by cats?

  299. @Pincher Martin

    Objections are to two things: 1) the advocates of lockdowns are rapidly lying about the motivation. It was to “flatten the curve,” and drive the number of infections below the level that collapses the healthcare system.
     
    Motivations can change over time for perfectly sensible and honest reasons.

    The advocates of the lockdown who I've read were hoping to keep the virus under control in the U.S. in February and then, once that became impossible in March, hoped to keep the curve flat long enough to buy time for our heath care system.

    That's not dishonesty; that's simply understanding the context in which they are making policy suggestions. If your first defense falls, you move back to your second defense.

    Far more dishonest have been the advocates of letting it rip.

    1) They first said it was no worse than the flu.

    2) Then they said that is was no worse than a bad case of the flu.

    3) Then they said that while it might be worse than a bad case of the flu, it still only killed people who were already old, decrepit and useless.

    4) Now, with many working-age people dying, they are hanging their hats on any piece of good news which comes their way.


    Meanwhile, curve flattening has been dropped down the memory hole, and another goal has replaced it: obedience to political fiat seems about the best summary, with Ron Unz bidding us to praise a health bureaucrat for “saving millions” of lives.
     
    I'm a conservative Republican who lives in Santa Clara County. So believe me when I tell you it hurts me to say this, but California's typically-loony leaders have done a bang-up job of keeping this virus under control. The situation in SF could easily be as bad as New York City, and it's not even close.

    The demographics of NY are very different from California. The NY Metro area is 21% Black and 12% Puerto Rican , 10% Dominican

    Santa Clara is 2% Black and has 0 Dominicans

    The median age in Santa Clara is 33 verse 40 in the NY Metro area

    The elderly population in the the NY Metro area is 20% verse 12% in Santa Clara

    Here in the NY Metro area the majority of deaths under the age of 60 are among Blacks. Almost no white or Asian victims under the age of 50.

  300. @Hail

    Sweden will be absolutely vindicated in a year
     
    Sweden is already vindicated, as we speak, as far as I'm concerned. In fact, probably by early April it was already a done deal. Now that we're into the latter part of April, there's just no question.

    There is a lag effect here, and people are reacting to situations they see now but which reflect conditions of x days/weeks ago, like seeing the light of a distant star, light that is already x million years old.

    It's settled. It's over.

    I know this is late-thread. I do think the commentariat here is sharp, and if there are well-meaning holdouts out there who still believe this is an apocalyptic virus best comparable the 1918 Influenza, I'd just say they need to read more on the matter.

    I recommend the series "A Swiss Doctor on COVID19" from the excellent website Swiss Propaganda Research. The website OffGuardian has also truly distinguished itself in this.

    The series of updates from Dr. Knut Wittkowski which I have been re-posting here (that links to a series of replies with updates from him that he has been posting elsewhere) may also be helpful. Wittkowski, among many other actual experts, knew of what he spoke, and called it right; this is his field of expertise, alas, but no one listened; the media had already made its pact with the devil.


    Almost everyone else will look pretty foolish.
     
    I must say that while a lot of people look bad, at really all layers of society, I have noticed the Germanic NW Europeans (with Sweden the standout on a national-policy basis) as being leading anti-Panic voices. Several Swiss have distinguished themselves. A lot of Germans. The Netherlands did pretty well with resisting the madness, afaik. Brazil's president did well in a personal sense but I'm not clear on whether he was bale to keep the wackos and Shutdown-fanatics at bay.

    The English-speaking countries did well for a time, but then caved in. Our achilles heel was and is a bloodthirsty, "Enemy of the People" media, a hostile and parasitic force attached to a society it hates rather than an organic part of the society.

    What is the lesson of the Coronavirus Crisis? In three Latin words. I'll submit this one:

    MEDIA DELENDA EST.

    It’s settled. It’s over.

    Haha. You got some good stuff, but Clausewitz disagrees on that point. Book I. Chapter 1. Section 9. Look it up 🙂

  301. @utu
    "Sweden is really a combination of very low density and high density. There really isn’t much evidence that lockdowns have made much difference" - What a nonsense. It suffices to compare Sweden and Finland as they have similar population densities. Sweden has ten times more deaths per capita than Finland. When you take Scandinavian countries Norway, Denmark and Finland that are very similar on economic level and culturally, their death per capita and population density correlate at over 95% but when you add Sweden to the list the correlation drops to 15%. Clearly Sweden is a striking outlier.

    Now I don’t see anything exceptional about any of those countries’ numbers.

    Sweden has a population of 10m, the other three about 5.5m each.

    Sweden has an infection rate of 1.4/1000 and a death rate of 0.15/1000

    Denmark (1.3, 0.06)

    Norway (1.3, 0.03)

    Finland(0.7, 0.02)

    For comparison, Sweden has a higher infection rate than about half of the United States and a Death rate that would rank it in the top 15% of the United States. Sweden has a death rate less than Massachusetts at 0.25 but more than Washington DC at 0.14.

    Sweden’s infection rate is more than twice that of California. That, I think, is notable.

    • Replies: @utu
    "Now I don’t see anything exceptional about any of those countries’ numbers." - I thought I have explain it well so perhaps this picture will help:

    https://i.ibb.co/PNZ6qw2/Graph2.png
  302. @res

    The presence of antibodies does not equal past exposure. A person might have been infected with coronavirus and been asymptomatic (or even symptomatic) and might subsequently test negative for antibodies, either because he never produced antibodies in large amounts or because he produced them and they’ve already disappeared.

    I don’t know why everybody keeps forgetting this. I don’t know why I get ridiculed for saying it.
     
    Perhaps because you have never provided any supporting evidence? Or did I miss it?

    I don't doubt there is a range of antibody response. And ANY test is likely to have some proportion of false negatives (as well as false positives, and if you know anything about this topic you understand there is a tradeoff between the two types of error).

    I am skeptical of the exact numbers claimed here (and they appear to be talking about symptomatic cases), but if the tests are anywhere close to that good then you are wrong.
    https://www.contagionlive.com/news/covid19-finally-an-elisa-emerges

    According to published reports, the number of true positives will be almost 100% within 14 days after the onset of symptoms. Remarkably, Abbott claims the false-negative rate is 99% after 14 days. It is unclear whether the test detects only IgG, or both IgG and IgM immunoglobulins.
     
    Please give detailed evidence for why you think there are a large number of people in this category (false negatives from a serology test). And then give an estimate of how big an undercount you think there is due to this. 10%, 2x, 10x, ?

    https://www.businessinsider.com/study-recovered-coronavirus-patients-antibodies-2020-4

    6% of recovered patients in one study didn’t develop antibodies at all. These patients were actually hospitalized CV patients and they never produced any antibodies.

    if 6% of hospitalized CV patients produced zero antibodies then we could assume many of those with CV who have mild symptoms , or no symptoms, probably have zero antibodies

    Would not be strange if 10% of those with mild or no symptoms did not produce antibodies. If your primary immune system is strong enough to defeat CV your body will not have the need to produce antibodies. This could be the reason young people in the study produced less antibodies. Of those without any antibodies 90% of them were under the age of 40

    • Thanks: ic1000
    • Replies: @res
    Thanks for the information! Here is a direct link to the paper:
    https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/2020.03.30.20047365v1

    I could believe the 10% figure. I don't think that would materially change estimates of the infection rate (I think 10% is well within the uncertainty) but would bias them. Where this point matters more IMHO is with ideas like allowing people back to work based on antibody tests.

    The other question is how much higher than 10% might it be? If we are looking at 6% of hospitalized patients with the age bias you describe, then I could see how it might be higher for the symptomatic but unhospitalized and higher still for the asymptomatic.
    , @ic1000
    Yes, the absence of neutralizing antibodies in ~8% of recovered patients moves the ball in terms of understanding what's happening. Here are a few possibilities.

    * These patients' cellular immune system -- T cells, NK cells, and other white blood cells -- beat the virus without much participation by the antibody-producing B cells. This would be unusual but not impossible. T cell response and B cell response are usually intertwined.

    * These patients' innate immune system beat the virus without much participation by the adaptive immune system (described above). Again, not impossible.

    * These patients have clinically recovered because they are able to live with the virus. Sometimes it's not the virus but the body's response to the virus (e.g. cytokine storm) that does the damage.

    * Something else I'm not thinking of.

    As the authors allude to in the Business Insider summary, it will be pretty straightforward to figure out which of these is happening.
  303. @Kratoklastes

    NYC doctors innovated a new protocol for treating COVID patients with breathing problems (put them on their stomachs and treat with oxygen masks) that cut ventilator demand substantially
     
    How is this considered 'innovative', tho?

    I know they had some people from marketing think up the term 'proning', but the technique itself is an ages-old way of clearing clogged lungs generally... to give it a crack for covid patients seems obvious.

    When my younger brother contracted bacterial pneumonia as a kid - 40 years ago - part of his daily treatment (after a short stay in hospital) involved postural drainage with percussion. He had to lay down in a specific set of postures, and for some of them my Mum had to 'slap' different parts of his back ('slap' is the wrong word: using a cupped hand, so that a pocket of air gets trapped on each strike) .

    That's one of the reasons I mentioned it a week or so ago when I queried the efficacy of ventilators (and proposed what might be more useful than forcing oxygen into liquid-filled lungs - i.e., guaphenesin, aspiration of the sputum, and postural percussive drainage).

    With 'bashing' provided by The Lovely, I have used the same technique 3 or 4 times this millennium (first event was in 2004), when I have managed to contract horrible bacterial chest infections - usually as a result of being breathed on by a foreigner (and usually the foreigner had fetid breath).

    You see, my personal kryptonite is very specifically lung-related, and only kicks in under very specific circumstances.

    I have relatively narrow bronchioles (one level down from the tertiary bronchi), and if I get a chest infection they narrow further.

    In the ordinary course of events they're not a problem - I have abnormally large lung capacity, and my bronchioles are small relative to capacity, not outright.

    So if I detect grossness a-lurking, I get on top of that shit immediately - massive hydration; hot baths and showers; lots of gargling and (ewww) nasal lavage; guaiphenesin as an expectorant and salbutamol to open up the pipes. (To be fair: the entire therapeutic effect might be down to those last 2 things).

    If I don't get on top of it in time and things close up, my entire life gets very snotty very quick - because everything gets trapped and basically starts to congeal and go foul.

    As I wrote back in 2008 -

    the output is a very fine example of the snotmaker’s craft. Thicker than contact adhesive left in a warm room for five minutes, and greener than the pus that oozes from the hole where Cheney’s conscience ought to reside. Getting the stuff out through my finely constructed (but prone to contraction) bronchii requires coughing on a scale to wake the dead
     

    Have you considered the possibility of your having atypical cystic fibrosis?

    • Replies: @Kratoklastes
    No, it's not something I've ever been checked for - my 'gross lung oyster' episodes have always been very strongly linked to winter and exposure to someone who is obviously carrying some pathogen.

    The one time I had a specialist look at my lungs was in 2009 - I got a shocking dose of something unpleasant while being held in a French detention centre, so went to see a specialist once I got back to Australia.

    He confirmed the 'narrow bronchioles' thing, and told me I didn't need antibiotics (I didn't want any anyway).

    All the genetic disasters are on The Lovely's side of the family - her father has Parkinson's; her mother had breast cancer; her sister is retarded (mildly - Prader-Willi syndrome); her brother died of liver cancer aged 17; her uncle died of a heart attack at 48; her grandmother was Type I diabetic. That's a lot of shit going wrong.

    On my side we are a bizarre cross-breed of all sorts of nonsense, so we have hybrid vigour. KEK
  304. @Johnny Rico
    Now I don't see anything exceptional about any of those countries' numbers.

    Sweden has a population of 10m, the other three about 5.5m each.

    Sweden has an infection rate of 1.4/1000 and a death rate of 0.15/1000

    Denmark (1.3, 0.06)

    Norway (1.3, 0.03)

    Finland(0.7, 0.02)

    For comparison, Sweden has a higher infection rate than about half of the United States and a Death rate that would rank it in the top 15% of the United States. Sweden has a death rate less than Massachusetts at 0.25 but more than Washington DC at 0.14.

    Sweden's infection rate is more than twice that of California. That, I think, is notable.

    “Now I don’t see anything exceptional about any of those countries’ numbers.” – I thought I have explain it well so perhaps this picture will help:

    • Replies: @LondonBob
    Obviously if you completely lockdown before the virus is circulating in your country it will slow the spread as this is no spread, the problem for these countries is they will have to open up eventually and then the virus will spread and they will either adopt Sweden's approach or lockdown again.
  305. @Hail

    Sweden will be absolutely vindicated in a year
     
    Sweden is already vindicated, as we speak, as far as I'm concerned. In fact, probably by early April it was already a done deal. Now that we're into the latter part of April, there's just no question.

    There is a lag effect here, and people are reacting to situations they see now but which reflect conditions of x days/weeks ago, like seeing the light of a distant star, light that is already x million years old.

    It's settled. It's over.

    I know this is late-thread. I do think the commentariat here is sharp, and if there are well-meaning holdouts out there who still believe this is an apocalyptic virus best comparable the 1918 Influenza, I'd just say they need to read more on the matter.

    I recommend the series "A Swiss Doctor on COVID19" from the excellent website Swiss Propaganda Research. The website OffGuardian has also truly distinguished itself in this.

    The series of updates from Dr. Knut Wittkowski which I have been re-posting here (that links to a series of replies with updates from him that he has been posting elsewhere) may also be helpful. Wittkowski, among many other actual experts, knew of what he spoke, and called it right; this is his field of expertise, alas, but no one listened; the media had already made its pact with the devil.


    Almost everyone else will look pretty foolish.
     
    I must say that while a lot of people look bad, at really all layers of society, I have noticed the Germanic NW Europeans (with Sweden the standout on a national-policy basis) as being leading anti-Panic voices. Several Swiss have distinguished themselves. A lot of Germans. The Netherlands did pretty well with resisting the madness, afaik. Brazil's president did well in a personal sense but I'm not clear on whether he was bale to keep the wackos and Shutdown-fanatics at bay.

    The English-speaking countries did well for a time, but then caved in. Our achilles heel was and is a bloodthirsty, "Enemy of the People" media, a hostile and parasitic force attached to a society it hates rather than an organic part of the society.

    What is the lesson of the Coronavirus Crisis? In three Latin words. I'll submit this one:

    MEDIA DELENDA EST.

    I see you continue trolling with your German brigade lead by Knut Wittkowski.

    https://www.unz.com/jthompson/models-the-logic-of-failure/#comment-3843362
    The strongest among the countering theories is that the virus or viruses in general do not exist. Somebody wrote about it here at UR; then I googled it and indeed there is this guy in Germany who even went to court for it. It is interesting that hoaxers get so much support in terms of arguments and talking points from people like Wittkowski and several other credentialed Germans. Few hoaxer commenters here have German connection as well. Is Germany running a psyop and what we see is a concerted operation to gather all the anti-gov skeptics and libertarian nutjobs together or just the usual thing when some Germans are carried away by their logical mind unrestrained by a common sense and intuition that Gods for some reason haven’t blessed them with?

    BTW, in the KGB disinformation campaign about HIV in 1980’s (Operation Infection) a German-Jewish microbiologist played a very prominent role. The operation was quite successful. The are tens of millions in America who fell for it.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Infektion
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jakob_Segal

  306. @Pincher Martin

    Objections are to two things: 1) the advocates of lockdowns are rapidly lying about the motivation. It was to “flatten the curve,” and drive the number of infections below the level that collapses the healthcare system.
     
    Motivations can change over time for perfectly sensible and honest reasons.

    The advocates of the lockdown who I've read were hoping to keep the virus under control in the U.S. in February and then, once that became impossible in March, hoped to keep the curve flat long enough to buy time for our heath care system.

    That's not dishonesty; that's simply understanding the context in which they are making policy suggestions. If your first defense falls, you move back to your second defense.

    Far more dishonest have been the advocates of letting it rip.

    1) They first said it was no worse than the flu.

    2) Then they said that is was no worse than a bad case of the flu.

    3) Then they said that while it might be worse than a bad case of the flu, it still only killed people who were already old, decrepit and useless.

    4) Now, with many working-age people dying, they are hanging their hats on any piece of good news which comes their way.


    Meanwhile, curve flattening has been dropped down the memory hole, and another goal has replaced it: obedience to political fiat seems about the best summary, with Ron Unz bidding us to praise a health bureaucrat for “saving millions” of lives.
     
    I'm a conservative Republican who lives in Santa Clara County. So believe me when I tell you it hurts me to say this, but California's typically-loony leaders have done a bang-up job of keeping this virus under control. The situation in SF could easily be as bad as New York City, and it's not even close.

    Another good comment from you. Thanks!

  307. @Alexander Turok

    the possibility of getting a virus with a fatality rate not much worse than that of the flu
     
    That isn't true.

    Trying to make sure that people can keep their jobs is about as populist as it gets, and trying to force the populace to live like cringing, welfare-dependent bugmen–which you Doomers want–is about as anti-populist as it gets.
     
    I never thought of unemployment benefits as "anti-populist." Maybe you're just saying "populist" when you mean "libertarian." It's a standard liberal and libertarian talking point that any benefits one receives from the government are equivalent to welfare and that you're a "hypocrite" if you support one government program and reject another. I reject that notion completely. To quote my reply to the other commenter:

    You could point out “hey, the disabled person is asking for aid and the lazy person who doesn’t want to work is asking for aid, where’s the difference?” There’s no hypocrisy in wanting to help one rather than the other.
     
    I can't think of anything more anti-populist than the notion that workers should have to brave sickness and death in order to avoid being accused of collecting welfare by the Koch brothers.

    That isn’t true.

    Oh, yes it is… unless you’re a chronically-ill person above 75.

    Why is it that Doomers are so fixated on age-agnosticism?

    Let’s assume you’re not a charlatan – i.e., someone whose position is based on fear, but who pretends that it’s based on data.

    Get some data and delete anything to do with the 75+ cohort (if the highest age bracket is 65+ delete those).

    Do it assiduously – for cases, hospitalisations, ICU admissions (if available), and deaths.

    Here are links to PDFs files for the latest data on cases, hospitalisations, and deaths by age cohort for NYC. NYC’s testing data is not worth looking at: they’ve only done 227k tests and got 129k positives (so about 57% positives), which is evidence that they’re only testing likely positives.

     • NYC – Latest Cases by age group, gender and borough
     •  NYC – Latest hospitalisation count by age group, gender and borough
     • NYC – Latest Confirmed-case deaths by age group, gender and borough

    Bottom line:
     • for people under 45, there have only been 383 deaths.
     • of those 383 deaths, there have only been 9 deaths of people with no underlying conditions; 67 where no data on UCs is available, and 316 with known UCs.

    About the only thing that’s constant across age groups, is that deaths that have confirmed underlying conditions, are a very large proportion of age-group deaths.

    Over all NYC confirmed cases for people under 75, there have been 4550 deaths, but only 935 deaths where the victim has no-or-unknown comorbidities.

    Given that it’s finally becoming obvious that people were right to criticise the ‘C’ in CFR as being a stupidly retarded under-estimate (because of low- and no-symptom cases), there’s a good case for slamming CFR estimates down by at least 1 order of magnitude.

    .

    Seriously: if you’re not completely convinced of the extremely low marginal mortality risk for everybody under 75 (even people with chronic underlying conditions), head over to Udemy and sign up for an introductory Excel course, because you’ve done something wrong.

  308. @Johnny Rico
    You say some very important things, but be careful.

    "18k tests is a big number..."
     
    You say Santa Clara has a population of 2m. Massachusetts has a population 3.5 times bigger. We've done over 160,000 tests. So twice as many tests per capita. We do on average 6k per day or 1% of our population.

    I've ceased to consider whether any of these numbers are big or small because they are the biggest we as a nation have ever done in such a time period.

    The lastest number I read was that we inoculated 2.4 million service members against anthrax in the 80s I think. We have tested about 4 million Americans for Covid. So there's that. Good news?

    To me, it is impossible to compare this present outbreak to past flu seasons because we never did anywhere near this type of testing in any of those flu seasons. Although everybody to this point has kind of taken those numbers for granted, they are complete guesswork and extrapolation using models using very little hard data.

    Numbers like 30-60,000 deaths and 18-26 million infections are not projections they are estimates of the past!!! They might as well be for the Black Death in 1346.

    What we are doing know is literally the best hard data we have ever attempted to collect in real time. And EVERYBODY AGREES it is pretty bad and that it doesn't tell us anything that we really would like to know. It has only accounted for 1% of the population and at most 3% of the population in the real hotspots. And it took 30-40 days to collect.


    "For now, I’ll err on the side of listening to the medical professionals who are on the front lines, the near entirety of whom warn us of a genuine menace."
     
    Yeah. I hear ya. But, again, be careful. This might be like listening to the generals and colonels during the War on Iraq/Afghanistan/Terrrorism. Do you ever recall any of the professionals on the front-line saying anything but that this was a war we had to fight the way we were fighting it?

    You know, that whole Upton Sinclair thing:

    “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it.”

    And remember, sometimes it seems like the only people observing a plague are those medical professionals in certain hotspot hospitals. In 80% of the United States less than 1.5 people out of a thousand have been confirmed infected. Therefore only about 0.15 people out of 1000 or 15 out of 100,000 have been hospitalized and then one tenth of that again have died of COVID-19. So the people in all those communities see almost no effects of the disease itself and yet 35% have lost their income and life has been put on hold as they know it.

    The cognitive dissonance can only grow.

    Nobody in the medical community or at a political level or even at the the level of Ron Unz - who have taken a definite stand on the side of the political decisions that have been made - can EVER admit to having made mistakes, misjudgments, or were wrong in any way. They will always have to maintain that they were trying to save lives and were "erring on the side of..."

    I'm on the fence. I don't know. I'm grateful I live in the United States. But some days things can be really dark.

    It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it.

    Truer words have never been spoken. In your analogy above though, I would instinctively listen to the soldiers far more readily than the generals.

    I’m on the fence too. Even though it is clear that many on the anti-lockdown side of the argument are taking extreme liberties in minimizing the risk, the other side’s solutions could end up imposing even greater long-term costs.

    • Agree: Johnny Rico
  309. @Pincher Martin

    Objections are to two things: 1) the advocates of lockdowns are rapidly lying about the motivation. It was to “flatten the curve,” and drive the number of infections below the level that collapses the healthcare system.
     
    Motivations can change over time for perfectly sensible and honest reasons.

    The advocates of the lockdown who I've read were hoping to keep the virus under control in the U.S. in February and then, once that became impossible in March, hoped to keep the curve flat long enough to buy time for our heath care system.

    That's not dishonesty; that's simply understanding the context in which they are making policy suggestions. If your first defense falls, you move back to your second defense.

    Far more dishonest have been the advocates of letting it rip.

    1) They first said it was no worse than the flu.

    2) Then they said that is was no worse than a bad case of the flu.

    3) Then they said that while it might be worse than a bad case of the flu, it still only killed people who were already old, decrepit and useless.

    4) Now, with many working-age people dying, they are hanging their hats on any piece of good news which comes their way.


    Meanwhile, curve flattening has been dropped down the memory hole, and another goal has replaced it: obedience to political fiat seems about the best summary, with Ron Unz bidding us to praise a health bureaucrat for “saving millions” of lives.
     
    I'm a conservative Republican who lives in Santa Clara County. So believe me when I tell you it hurts me to say this, but California's typically-loony leaders have done a bang-up job of keeping this virus under control. The situation in SF could easily be as bad as New York City, and it's not even close.

    Now, with many working-age people dying

    Where? Prove it.

    Try to use only deaths with a test confirming covid19.

    NYC helpfully splits them out – as of yesterday, they’ve had a total of 2368 deaths in people under 65 who tested positive, of which over 85% had relevant pre-existing conditions.

    NYC’s population aged 20-65: 5.1 million. (I’m assuming that the census data covers the same area)

    2368 of that 5.1 million have died-with covid19. That’s 0.044% – the margin of error in the census data is 0.1% more than 20x that.

    Sad for their families, but demographically it’s a rounding error. It’s late APRIL and this thing has been around since late DECEMBER.

    Who told you that ‘many working age people were dying‘? Relative to what?

    I don’t know of a single country where the deaths of people of working age are a demographically-relevant number.

    The world’s absolutely awash in data that’s deliberately over-reporting covid19 deaths (by saying “heart attack + covid19 = covid19“, for example) and yet I guarantee you won’t be able to find a country where deaths in working age populations are non-trivial in the context of the entire age cohort.

    I get age-cohort data for 26 countries every single day, and I’m adding countries as I find good data sources.

    The age-group data is so revealing that the UK government has consistently refused to make it readily available. (It’s been a few days since I checked, I admit… maybe you can find something).

  310. @Manfred Arcane
    I still can't tell if you're a Richard Spencer acolyte or a Bernie Bro, but either way you're betraying utter ignorance of the way the world works and of the people you claim you want to help. Your smug disdain for "waging" ignores the reality that the vast majority of people live in and have lived in since the dawn of time.

    You appear to believe that the millions of workers who are losing their jobs to hysteria over a bad flu/cold can simply live happily off unemployment indefinitely. They can't; UE benefits are designed to allow people to scrape by on a temporary basis, not provide a full substitute for lost wages. The working class doesn't want to be free from all risk of catching this ridiculously overhyped disease; they want to be able to provide for their families, see their friends and relatives, go to church, engage in recreation, and live without having to be dependent on a heartless bureaucracy for a bare subsistence, as you apparently want them to do.

    If anything useful has come out of the Hysteria Pandemic of 2020, it's the exposure of so many Internet "independent thinkers" as friendless, childless, clueless, cowardly, and selfish Doomers who will believe anything the Establishment tells them as long as it's based on impressively complex-looking data, and who will throw middle-class and working-class whites under the bus if allows them to feel smart. Tony Martel recently got all his columns on Occidental Dissent deleted for pointing this out, but it's true nonetheless.

    You appear to believe that the millions of workers who are losing their jobs to hysteria over a bad flu/cold can simply live happily off unemployment indefinitely. They can’t; UE benefits are designed to allow people to scrape by on a temporary basis, not provide a full substitute for lost wages.

    UE benefits have been increased. They can be increased even more.

    The working class doesn’t want to be free from all risk of catching this ridiculously overhyped disease; they want to be able to provide for their families, see their friends and relatives, go to church, engage in recreation, and live

    I don’t know what they want, do you? How? Even granting your point, how much of the working class is fat or smokes? If this group wants X or Y, well, I don’t have much faith in their judgment. On this issue, I don’t have much respect in general for the opinions of people who can’t do math. What’s next, are we going to let anyone have an opinion on civil engineering? Next time your town wants to design a bridge, allow any random person with no engineering knowledge to submit a design and then vote democratically on which to build.

    If anything useful has come out of the Hysteria Pandemic of 2020, it’s the exposure of so many Internet “independent thinkers” as friendless, childless, clueless, cowardly, and selfish Doomers

    If anything useful has come out of this, it’s the exposure of so many Internet “independent thinkers” as weak-willed whiners. How many of these people were, six months ago, condemning modern society for its “materialism” and “consumerism” and condemning libertarians for elevating money and GDP above all else? How many of them are now saying “oh, who cares if Grandpa dies, I need to buy the latest iPhone, let’s open everything back up?”

    who will believe anything the Establishment tells them

    I knew about corona long before the establishment did. I told people to stock up on food back on Feb 1:

    https://alexanderturok.wordpress.com/2020/02/01/dont-use-corona-to-signal/

    Just because you can’t think for yourself, believing whatever some media outlet be it CNN or Fox says about the world, doesn’t mean the same is true for the rest of us.

    • Replies: @Manfred Arcane
    At this point you're just screaming irrelevancies at strawmen. We're not talking about buying I-phones, and you bloody well know it. People protesting the lockdown need money to keep their families fed, their businesses operating, their rent paid. I take it you're above such vulgar, materialistic concerns, but most people aren't. Grandpa and grandma are going to die anyway if they or the family members supporting them can't afford food, shelter, or nursing home bills. I am already witnessing people standing in food bank lines for hours in my state, and I have nothing but contempt for posturing Doomers like you who want to perpetuate this hellish situation because you're terrified of a bad cold.
  311. @gfhändel
    Have you considered the possibility of your having atypical cystic fibrosis?

    No, it’s not something I’ve ever been checked for – my ‘gross lung oyster’ episodes have always been very strongly linked to winter and exposure to someone who is obviously carrying some pathogen.

    The one time I had a specialist look at my lungs was in 2009 – I got a shocking dose of something unpleasant while being held in a French detention centre, so went to see a specialist once I got back to Australia.

    He confirmed the ‘narrow bronchioles’ thing, and told me I didn’t need antibiotics (I didn’t want any anyway).

    All the genetic disasters are on The Lovely‘s side of the family – her father has Parkinson’s; her mother had breast cancer; her sister is retarded (mildly – Prader-Willi syndrome); her brother died of liver cancer aged 17; her uncle died of a heart attack at 48; her grandmother was Type I diabetic. That’s a lot of shit going wrong.

    On my side we are a bizarre cross-breed of all sorts of nonsense, so we have hybrid vigour. KEK

  312. @utu
    Excellent point. One may think that the effect of false positives will be cancelled by false negatives but this is not the case when the infection rate is small.

    IR_est=[(N-n)*PFP+ n*(1-PFN)]/N=(1-IR)*PFP+IR*(1-PFN)= IR*(1-PFN-PFP) +PFP

    PFP -probability of false positive
    PFN -probability of false negative
    N - sample size
    n - number of infected
    IR - actual infection rate
    IR_est - estimated infection rate

    The cancellation of errors happens when IR=PFP/(PFP+PFN). When IR<PFP/(PFP+PFN) then a good approximation is IR_est≈IR+PFP, meaning that for small IR the result is always overestimated but it could be corrected by subtracting PFP from the result.

    In the Appendix
    https://www.medrxiv.org/content/medrxiv/suppl/2020/04/17/2020.04.14.20062463.DC1/2020.04.14.20062463-1.pdf

    bases on the test manufacturer specifications (out of 371 negative samples 2 tested positive) and their own small (n=30) test negative sample that all 30 tested negative they estimate the specificity to be 99.5%, meaning that PFP=0.005. Did they subtract this PFP from their result?

    Probably even more importantly, due to the uncertainty in the test’s specificity, the 95 percent confidence interval for community prevalence of Covid-19 should include zero.

    From the linked post:

    If you really trust these [specificity] numbers, you’re cool: with y=399 and n=401, we can do the standard Agresti-Coull 95% interval based on y+2 and n+4, which comes to [98.0%, 100%].

    I’m not familiar with the advanced statistical methods the author uses. But in lay terms, it looks like once the false-positive rate, the probabilistic complement of specificity, equals or exceeds the estimated prevalence rate, then there will be a significant chance that the true prevalence is zero.

    And it looks like, conservatively, the range of possible specificities for the test used drops well below the minimum 98.5 percent needed for the left end of the 95-percent confidence interval for Covid-19 prevalence to stay above zero.

    What this guy wrote looks solid. If so, the study’s junk.

  313. @Pincher Martin

    Objections are to two things: 1) the advocates of lockdowns are rapidly lying about the motivation. It was to “flatten the curve,” and drive the number of infections below the level that collapses the healthcare system.
     
    Motivations can change over time for perfectly sensible and honest reasons.

    The advocates of the lockdown who I've read were hoping to keep the virus under control in the U.S. in February and then, once that became impossible in March, hoped to keep the curve flat long enough to buy time for our heath care system.

    That's not dishonesty; that's simply understanding the context in which they are making policy suggestions. If your first defense falls, you move back to your second defense.

    Far more dishonest have been the advocates of letting it rip.

    1) They first said it was no worse than the flu.

    2) Then they said that is was no worse than a bad case of the flu.

    3) Then they said that while it might be worse than a bad case of the flu, it still only killed people who were already old, decrepit and useless.

    4) Now, with many working-age people dying, they are hanging their hats on any piece of good news which comes their way.


    Meanwhile, curve flattening has been dropped down the memory hole, and another goal has replaced it: obedience to political fiat seems about the best summary, with Ron Unz bidding us to praise a health bureaucrat for “saving millions” of lives.
     
    I'm a conservative Republican who lives in Santa Clara County. So believe me when I tell you it hurts me to say this, but California's typically-loony leaders have done a bang-up job of keeping this virus under control. The situation in SF could easily be as bad as New York City, and it's not even close.

    Letting it rip, in the context of what we saw in Italy, could have led to disaster here. I’d argue that the efforts or lack thereof in NYC in March constituted “let it rip,” and the 13,000 excess deaths in the city from March 11 to April 13 constitute the people killed by what the Brits might originally call the pursuing the herd immunity strategy. (Deaths after about April 10 are almost certainly post-lockdown-acquired infections. People dying this week must surely be post-lockdown, at a very high percentage.)

    Flatten the curve is still the herd immunity strategy, but without unnecessary deaths due to healthcare overload. Now, if the objective has changed (crush the curve, exterminate the virus), I haven’t heard that from my political leaders at a national or state level, but they are acting like that is their goal.

    Which leads to the questions: is that goal achievable? realistic? How might it be phrased as a SMART goal?

    I quote Ann Coulter:

    According to a model recently published in The New York Times, if Trump had issued social distancing guidelines just two weeks earlier — on March 2, rather than March 16 — instead of 60,000 Americans dying from the Chinese coronavirus (projected!), only 6,000 would have died.

    If that’s what a two-week quarantine would have done, then how about a four-week quarantine?

    By the end of the month, 90% of the country will have been shut down, quarantined and socially distancing for FOUR WEEKS. …

    After two weeks, you’re either sick or the infection has passed through you with no symptoms.

    Again: It’s been three. Does social distancing work or doesn’t it?

    After four weeks of self-isolation, won’t 90% of the country be Wuhan-free? Or are we in a sci-fi movie with a virus that can live forever without a host?

    Keeping the healthcare system from collapsing was a good idea. In the absence of a vaccine, so is herd immunity, the original goal of curve-flattening. Manifestly, the healthcare system has not collapsed. Despite being locked down for 31 days now, NYC still suffered about 500 deaths yesterday, most of which must have been post-lockdown infections.

    My guess would be that NYC will be better off on reopening than “the City,” simply because of the numbers of people who died and the concomitant numbers who must have gotten infected and recovered. That we have no idea in the latter case due to lack of randomized testing is the true scandal, in addition to government failing mask stockpiling.

    The elderly and sickly in areas that haven’t experienced NYC rates of dying are especially at risk, I should think, and will continue to be so. Time, perhaps, to move to a more cost-effective and life-sparing approach than the typical one taken by one-size-fits-all egalitarian liberalism, perhaps?

  314. @Anatoly Karlin
    To date the Diamond Princess is our only fully controlled "petri dish". Age-adjusted IFR stands at ~1.5% there.

    https://twitter.com/tomaspueyo/status/1251203756076777474

    People who take cruises are, I assume, wealthier/healthier than average at any age group, and they all had access to hospital healthcare.

    Your calculations seem way off. 712 people contracted corona on the Diamond Princess. Those were all people in their 60-80s. 13 died. That’s 1,8%. So how do you age-adjust it to 1,5%? Makes no sense.

  315. @Intelligent Dasein
    No, no. It's not a false negative from a serology test. It's a true negative from a serology test.

    No, no. It’s not a false negative from a serology test. It’s a true negative from a serology test.

    There can be legitimately different uses of terminology here. If you claim the test is testing for “has been infected” then the definition I used is correct (this is typically the intent of doing the test). Your definition is the more literal one for “antibody test” (and I would say is the more technically correct).

    An interesting question is whether someone who has been infected with no (or undetectable) antibodies now can be re-infected.

    Practically speaking (which is what I care about here) your clarification leaves these relevant cases.

    Has been infected, has antibody response, tests positive – true positive
    Has been infected, has antibody response, tests negative – false negative
    Has been infected, no antibody response, tests negative – false negative wrt infection, true negative wrt antibodies

    How relatively big do you think those categories are? Data would be very helpful for this discussion.

    • Replies: @Intelligent Dasein
    Hey res,

    This thread is getting old by now; I'm sure we'll pick this up again in a newer thread.

    I don't really have any data at the moment. I'm just inferring from what seems apparent. I would guess that the number of exposed true seronegatives is one Pareto greater than exposed true seropositives. Ergo, if 6% of the population is seropositive, an additional 24% have been exposed and are seronegative.
  316. Recent serology studies may be wrong. But if wrong, they‘re all wrong *in the same direction.*

    Finnish: 20-50x undercount
    Scottish: 27-55x
    Stanford: 50-85x
    Italian: 30x
    Mass: 17x
    Germany: 0.37% CFR
    Denmark: 0.21%

    [tweet by @naval ]

    As in the replies under that, this list needs to include a large Dutch serology study which concludes an IFR for under 70s at 0.08 %.
    Care to further update your opinion Ron , or are there studies which indicate currently quoted mortality rates are anything except grossly exaggerated ?

  317. @utu

    I am becoming rather frustrated by these COVID-19 conversations. Seeing both Ron Unz and Peter Frost (two people I consider quite knowledgeable and thoughtful) make the same careless mistake in this thread exceeded my patience.
     
    Says who? The same guy who wasted lots of energy and space arguing the the infection-to-death time was two weeks and not three weeks as Ron Unz assumed in his rough estimations.. Kaiser Permanent study now shows it is three week + six days.

    https://www.unz.com/isteve/kaiser-permanente-data-on-hospitalizations/#comment-3845777

    Says who? The same guy who wasted lots of energy and space arguing the the infection-to-death time was two weeks and not three weeks as Ron Unz assumed in his rough estimations..

    You are a fine one to be talking about wasting energy and space. You have written 768 comments so far during March and April. I would be happy to compare the relative signal to noise ratio of our respective comments over this period.

    It would help if you accurately represented the point I was arguing. Ron had been citing the 2-3 week estimate then focusing on the three week version. I was noting that there was evidence for the two week side (i.e. should maybe consider somewhere between). The thread following this comment includes the discussion for anyone who would like to judge for themselves. If you read through the exchange you will see a whole three comments from me (some waste of energy and space). You will also notice that Ron seemed to at least take my argument seriously.

    https://www.unz.com/anepigone/americas-coronavirus-peak/#comment-3817321

    Ron, I basically agree with your analysis process (I am less sure about your conclusions). But I think you should consider these points (if you have not already).

    – The infection-mortality period may very well be less than 3 weeks. Kratoklastes and I have some back and forth about this here:
    https://www.unz.com/isteve/uk-r0-supposed-to-have-fallen-from-2-6-to-0-6/#comment-3814967
    He argues for substantially less than two weeks. I disagreed and counterargued for a little longer, but think his points are worth considering.

    Back to you.

    Kaiser Permanent study now shows it is three week + six days.

    https://www.unz.com/isteve/kaiser-permanente-data-on-hospitalizations/#comment-3845777

    Yes, that is a very interesting result. First though, when a good Bayesian encounters new contradictory data he does not immediately change his estimate to agree with it. He updates his prior based on the relative weight of evidence supporting each position.

    Second, thanks for reemphasizing that point. I suspect that was where Peter Frost got his four week estimate. I had noticed and appreciated your original linked comment but did not internalize it enough.

    Lastly, how to explain the difference with the other results? My best guess is the treatment protocol both helped to reduce the fatality rate and also increased the time until death. I’d be interested in other ideas. The important question is what estimate to use going forward. For me the KP study moves my estimate back to three weeks (or maybe a day or two longer) from thinking it was a little less.

    • Replies: @utu
    I simply pointed out that you were giving hard time to Peter Frost for using "2" instead "3" to the point of being distressed on the verge of mental breakdown and throwing a fit:

    I am becoming rather frustrated by these COVID-19 conversations. Seeing both Ron Unz and Peter Frost (two people I consider quite knowledgeable and thoughtful) make the same careless mistake in this thread exceeded my patience.
     
    while not so long before you were arguing the opposite case that it was "2" not "3".

    The wasting time thing was not meant literary. Who cares about time here in the zoo. Anyway, you are a piece of work, res. Don't take the zoo too seriously. There is a world outside of the zoo. A Good Bayesian - funny.
  318. @Travis
    https://www.businessinsider.com/study-recovered-coronavirus-patients-antibodies-2020-4

    6% of recovered patients in one study didn't develop antibodies at all. These patients were actually hospitalized CV patients and they never produced any antibodies.

    if 6% of hospitalized CV patients produced zero antibodies then we could assume many of those with CV who have mild symptoms , or no symptoms, probably have zero antibodies

    Would not be strange if 10% of those with mild or no symptoms did not produce antibodies. If your primary immune system is strong enough to defeat CV your body will not have the need to produce antibodies. This could be the reason young people in the study produced less antibodies. Of those without any antibodies 90% of them were under the age of 40

    Thanks for the information! Here is a direct link to the paper:
    https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/2020.03.30.20047365v1

    I could believe the 10% figure. I don’t think that would materially change estimates of the infection rate (I think 10% is well within the uncertainty) but would bias them. Where this point matters more IMHO is with ideas like allowing people back to work based on antibody tests.

    The other question is how much higher than 10% might it be? If we are looking at 6% of hospitalized patients with the age bias you describe, then I could see how it might be higher for the symptomatic but unhospitalized and higher still for the asymptomatic.